It’s been a fascinating weekend for me, and a true learning experience. Actually, more like a public spanking, to be honest ;0)
After the San Bernadino attacks, an article I wrote on Islam was published in our local paper.
The article received several comments at the Naples News online site, as well as on my website and my church’s site. Most were supportive and thanked me for writing the article. But several on the newspaper’s site were highly critical of the commentary. Here is a link to my commentary that appeared in the paper: FUNDAMENTAL DIFFERENCES.
In addition, I had posted on Twitter earlier about peace coming in our world only when the Prince of Peace comes…something to that effect. What surprised me was the responses on Twitter from white supremacists, who took my statements about peace as admonitions against any military or armed response to the terrorist attacks. Of course, that was not at all what I was saying, but it didn’t stop them from spewing their hatred.
When you actually see someone say in print we should just “kill all the Muslims”, it is jarring to say the least! While I won’t honor racist comments with a respectful answer, I would like to respond to the other critiques.
One commenter asked isn’t it hypocritical for me to point out the evil in the Quran, while ignoring all the violence sanctioned by God Himself in the Old Testament?
Yes, the Bible has lots of violence, but much of it is only describing what people are doing outside of God’s will. That’s the first mistake people make, not realizing God was not always “prescribing” the violence, just “describing” what happened in many cases.
But there are times in the Old Testament that God specifically told Israel to utterly destroy other groups in battle. However, these battles were ones of “self-preservation”. If Israel did not destroy the other tribes, those tribes would have destroyed them. In fact, there were several times when Israel’s leaders didn’t obey God fully and left part of the tribe alive, only to have those survivors come back and attack Israel later.
We see that scenario reflected in our war with Radical Islam today. If we do not destroy the terrorists who are attacking us, they will surely keep coming. It has been this way for thousands of years in the Middle East, and it remains so today.
The other main difference is that when God sanctioned violence in the Bible, it always had limits. You could only kill in that one circumstance. But Islam’s calls to violence are without time limits and against anyone who would not submit, forever.
For example: as a Christian, I can’t take a passage from the Bible and rightly use it as a call to kill someone today: it always had boundaries around it specific to one people at one specific time in history. In contrast, the calls to violence in the Quran are against ALL people for all ETERNITY. That’s why a radical Muslim fundamentalist can feel justified in killing us today, because there’s no limits on the number of infidels he can kill.
Not only is he allowed to keep killing, he’s encouraged to do so by his holy book!
Another criticism was that there’s no moral high ground for Christians since people do awful things in the name of Christianity as well as Islam. They cite the madman who attacked a Colorado Planned Parenthood clinic, killing several. So Christianity’s hands have just as much blood on them, right?
Wrong. The difference is that our holy book (the Bible) speaks against the very thing that happened in Colorado. That madman may think he was acting for God, but God specifically says in His Word that he’s wrong. While I stand for the human rights of unborn babies, there’s no justification for murdering clinic workers. So Christianity bears no responsibility for that horrible act because it’s against everything we teach and stand for.
I may rob a bank today and tell them that you sent me there to rob it. However, that in no way makes you responsible. Dropping your name as I run out the door is just my way of shifting blame. In the same way, madmen dropping the name of God doesn’t make Christians responsible for their actions. However, when the Quran sanctions and even encourages taking innocent life in the name of Allah, then those Muslims who hold to a literal interpretation of the Quran must take responsibility for those actions.
Bottom line: there is a huge difference in what Islam and Christianity teach. Maybe I’m missing something, but I haven’t heard of bands of marauding Presbyterians running rampant in our land…
What I would encourage us all to do is to avoid the tactics of demonization. We of course know not every Muslim supports terrorism, so we shouldn’t demonize them all for the acts of a few. But in the same way, we need to stop demonizing anyone who speaks the truth about the violence sanctioned in the Quran.
Sure, we can keep pretending Islam is at heart a religion of peace. But that statement is simply not accurate. There are Muslims who are peaceful and live peaceful lives, but their holy book is in direct conflict with that peace. Many Muslims are completely ignorant of some of the things found in their holy book (just as many Christians are ignorant of theirs).
Islam, when lived in complete obedience to the Quran, is a violent faith bent on dominating the world and annihilating unbelievers.
Last night in his address to the nation, President Obama spoke of the threat being only from those who have a “poisonous interpretation” of the Quran. But in truth, no interpretation is needed: one only has to read it to see the violence it supports. The poison is in the text, not the interpretation.
Sorry, it’s there in over 100 hateful passages of the Quran, in black ink on white paper.
This is a painfully hard truth. We can pretend otherwise and continue to live in a “happy place” of our own creation. Or we can embrace the challenge of this generation and fight against a foe that seeks to destroy everything we cherish as a free society.
It’s your choice. And as the old knight in “Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade” admonished…”Choose wisely”.