Gingrich: How To newter Muslims

As is well known by those those who follow the US election race, Donald Trump said that all Muslims wanting to enter the country should be forbidden to do so “until we find out what the hell is going on.” In a recent interview, Newt Gingrich goes further by saying that American Muslims “who believe in Sharia should be deported because Sharia is incompatible with Western civilisation.” See Newt Gringrich interview here).

in Islamic countries, the legal buttress of Islam is Sharia, Islamic law, which is based on the Qu’ran and other Islamic texts. It controls all areas of life. It is a penal code where violators are punished by the state. In Islam, Muslims are slaves of Allah. The tern Islam, contrary to Muslim apologists and ignorant non-Muslims, is not derived from the Arabic for “peace,” but from the Arabic for “surrender, devotion and submission”. Those who fall away from Islam, according to Sharia, must be arrested and admonished to repent – with, if necessary, a helping hand from the whip, and/or imprisonment. If the recalcitrant still refuses to submit, put him to death.

We also find this evil in Christian history – the Roman Catholic Inquisition. The difference, however, between Sharia and the Inquisition is that Sharia is based on the Islamic scriptures whereas the Inquisition was a mutilation of the New Testament.

Speaking of mutilations, another Sharia law is the cutting off clitorises.
(See http://www.answering-islam.org/Sharia/fem_circumcision.html).

There are many more Sharia laws that if known or published by the Western Islamophilic media would make the collective prepuce of the populace quiver.

To return to Newt’s proposal, namely, ask Muslim Americans, and by implication, prospective refugees, immigrants, whether they follow Sharia, and if yes, boot them out of the country or refuse entry, respectively. This proposal won’t work. The reason is because of another Sharia tactic – “taqiyya” veiled deception. The Qur’an (16:106 and 3:28) encourages Muslims to lie to protect themselves or the Muslim community.

Many Muslims in the West – as with many professing Christians – are either ignorant of or don’t give a toss for the core elements of their religion. So, if these professing Muslims say that Islam is a religion of peace, they could very well mean it. Islam, alas, is not defined by these ignorant peace-loving Muslims but by Allah and Mohammad, and the Islamic commentators, who teach that all Muslims should endeavour to subjugate non-Muslims; and if the latter refuse, they’re dead meat. See David Wood on Taqiyya – https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=324&v=6F4wBeshTsw#

An Islamic distortion of the Lord’s prayer

In my city’s main newspaper, The Islamic Awareness Centre in South Africa continues to distort their own beliefs and the Bible. Their topic title is one line from the Lord’s Prayer, “Forgive us our trespasses,” which runs into the body of the advert to complete the sentence: “begged Jesus (pbuh) of His Lord…”

There is no passage in the Qur’an which speaks explicitly of Jesus’ sinlessness. The Qur’an does say in Surah 19:19 that the Angel said to Mary: He said, “I am but a messenger come from thy Lord, to give thee a boy most pure.” Jesus is called “a boy most pure”. It is not bodily purity that is meant here but purity of a sinless life. The Qur’an says that Muhammad prayed for the forgiveness of his sins (Surah 40:55 ; 47:19 ; 48:2 ). Concerning Jesus in the Quran, there is no praying for forgiveness. The Quran calls Jesus the “word of God.” Muslims say the word of God is the (uncreated) Quran. This means that the Quran, Jesus and Allah are eternal; a Muslim trinity? Eternal beings/persons don’t sin.

In the Bible we find clear testimonies of the sinlessness of Jesus. Jesus himself said:

Which one of you convicts Me of sin? If I speak truth, why do you not believe Me? (John 8:46). In 2 Corinthians 5:21, we read (what do Muslims read?). “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” There are many other relevant biblical passages.

The excerpt “Forgive us our sins” is, of course, from the Bible, from “the Lord’s prayer.”

“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts (trespasses, sins) as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Why is this called the Lord’s prayer? Because it is the Lord’s (Jesus’s) prayer to God? No, silly. It’s called the Lord’s prayer because it is the prayer that the Lord (Jesus) told his followers to pray. The prayer is contained in the verses Matthew 6:9b – 13. And here are the words of Jesus’s directive immediately prior to the (Lord’s) prayer:

7 “And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8 Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. 9 Pray then like this: (the prayer follows).

Muslims, let context, not pretext, be your guide.

For those who say, like James White, the Qur’an is open to several interpretations

“I was recently accused of having a “categorical perspective” of Islam. I’m here to tell you that it doesn’t matter what interpretation I, you, the “moderate Muslims,” or even the Islamic State have. There’s only one interpretation of Islam that is approved by Allah in the Quran — Muhammad’s. Let’s take a look at how the Islamic Prophet, Allah’s messenger, the “perfect man” Muhammad interpreted the Quran.”

James White, please stop trying to be friends with Muslims

Over many years I have profited from James White insights into Christian theology. I believe he does an excellent job. Alas, since his excursions into Islam, I am becoming very frustrated with his blindness/refusal to understand that Islam is a violent and deceptive religion. I have written several posts on this issue. In the video below he says he has the rare experience (rare for Christians) to develop friendships with Muslims – believing, obedient ones. Friendship is a two-way street. No Muslim worth his Qur’an is allowed to be friends with non-Muslims, not even if the unbelieving-disobedient ones are members of his close family. Here is a critique from “Christian Prince.” if you want to know what Islam is, he is the person to teach you.

James White, enough already; you are a great tool of Islam, of the deception of Allah.

Muslims don’t have or want to have a clue what their own scriptures say about the Bible.

Islam teaches that Jews and Christians have corrupted their scriptures, while the Qur’an remains pure and thus free of error. One reason why free of error is that the Qur’an, like Allah, is uncreated, thus, eternal, and so not susceptible to change. I examine the argument of corruption of the Bible with a helping hand from David Wood and “Christian Prince.” The latter is Christian Iraqi with qualifications in Islamic law and the literature of Islam.

In David Wood’s “Muslims have no clue what their own scriptures say about the Bible,” he quotes Shabir Ally.

“Why not [the preservation of] the previous books then? God was sending one book after another, God was sending one prophet after another so that if the message of the previous prophets was changed over time, that was not much of a great issue because another prophet came to restore the message and bring it back to its pristine purity. So, for example, when previous messages were confused by people, Jesus came and restored it, and preached again ‘this is the word of God for you.’ Now after him, the message becomes diluted again, and the prophet Muhammad (PBUH) comes and restores the message and puts it in its final form. Now it cannot be diluted because if it is diluted, people would be left without the guidance. This is why God has undertaken t preserve the Qur’an as he has not done with the previous books.”

There are many verses in the Qur’an that contradict the Islamic notion that God has preserved only the Qur’an.

Surah 5:47-48 (Malik) 47 Therefore, let the people who follow the Injeel (Gospel) judge by the Law which Allah has revealed therein; those who do not judge by the Law which Allah has revealed, they are the transgressors. 48 To you, O Muhammad, We have revealed this Book with the truth. It confirms whatever has remained intact in the scriptures which came before it and also to safeguard it. Therefore, judge between people according to Allah’s revelations and do not yield to their vain desires diverging from the truth which has come to you…

Here is Pickthall’s translation of verse 48: And unto thee have We revealed the Scripture with the truth, confirming whatever Scripture was before it, and a watcher over it. So judge between them by that which Allah hath revealed, and follow not their desires away from the truth which hath come unto thee…

Compare Malik “whatever has remained intact” with Pickthall’s (Yusuf Ali’s translation is similar) “confirming whatever Scripture was before it” [the Bible – my square brackets].

By replacing the faithful translation of “confirming whatever came before it” (Pickthall and Ali) with the misleading “whatever has remained intact,” Malik misleads English speakers with words such as “whatever” (the leftovers?) remained intact (was left over after the Jews and Christians had corrupted there texts).

In the above passage it is Allah who revealed the Bible. Thus 1. Allah decreed that it be written, and 2. the Bible that Allah revealed was in possession of the Jews and the Christians at the time the above Qur’anic verses appeared. And these verses state that this Book/Scripture [the Qur’an]…confirms whatever came before it (Torah and Gospel).

But see Surah 3:84:

Say:”We believe in Allah and in what has been revealed to us and what was revealed to Abraham Ismail, Isaac, ,Jacob and the Tribes, and in (Books) given to Moses Jesus and the Prophets from their Lord; we make no distinction between one and another among them and to Allah do we bow our will (in Islam).”

The Arabic does not have the words in brackets – in Islam. Pickthall’s translation omits these words because the last two Arabic words of the verse are ahu muslimoona, which means “to Allah we bow/submit/surrender our will.” Arabic Muslim/Islam means “surrender/submit.” Islam, in spite of what many Muslims assert, does not mean “peace.”

A Muslim would say that the words “make no distinction among them” in the above verse does not mean that all revelations from God are of equal worth but rather that all God’s prophets were of equally good character.

Regarding “what was revealed” (Surah 3:84 above), Shabir Ally and other Muslims believe that the Qur’an affirms the initial inspiration of the previous scriptures but not their preservation and authority. On the contrary, the Qur’an (7th century) affirms all three – inspiration, preservation and authority.

Surah 3:3-4

  1. He has revealed to you this Book with the Truth, confirming the scripture which preceded it, as He revealed the Taurat (Torah) and Injeel

  2. (Gospel), 4. before this, as a guidance for mankind and also revealed this Al-Furqan (criterion for judgment between right and wrong). Surely those who reject Allah’s revelations will be sternly punished; Allah is Mighty, capable of retribution.

David Wood points out that Muslims don’t believe that the Bible was preserved because they say it contradicts the Qur’an, for example, Jesus is the eternal Son of God; he died and rose from the dead. So, the Muslim reasons thus: the Qur’an affirms the inspiration of the Bible. They open the Bible and see it contradicts the Qur’an. Ergo, the Bible was not preserved but is corrupted. We saw, in contrast, that the Bible was preserved. If not, then Allah/Muhammad must be a fool.

Surah 7:157 says: “Those who follow the apostle the unlettered prophet whom they find mentioned in their own (Scriptures – the Bible); in the law and the Gospel; for he commands them what is just and forbids them what is evil: he allows them as lawful what is good (and pure) and prohibits them from what is bad (and impure); He releases them from their heavy burdens and from the yokes that are upon them. So it is those who believe in him honor him help him and follow the light which is sent down with him it is they who will prosper.” (The Jews and Christians mentioned above are those living in Muhammad’s time).

Muslims say Muhammad was prophesied in the Bible. I thought the Bible was corrupted, which implies that no one knows Arthur (or Muhammad) from Martha. Muslims will say that there are bits of Bible that were preserved; the bits that gel with the Qur’an.

Another verse – Surah 18:27 (Yusuf Ali)

And recite (and teach) what has been revealed to thee of the Book of thy Lord: none can change His Words and none wilt thou find as a refuge other than Him.”

So no one can corrupt the Lord’s (Arabic rabb) word. Is there any wiggle room left for the Muslim. Yes. He says “the Book of the Lord refers to different times and climes: “For each period Is a Book (revealed).” So, for thousands of periods and of specific groups, God revealed his word to thousands of prophets where the revelations were unique to that period/group/language. All were corrupted, says the Muslim, except the Qur’an. This means that Allah’s word has been corrupted more than anyone’s word in history. But as we see ad nauseam in the Qur’an, Allah says that no one can corrupt his word.

I turn to Christian Prince:

Here is a paraphrase of Christian Prince’s critique of Shabir Ally’s argument that the Bible has been corrupted by the Jews and the Christians.

In the Qur’an it says that Allah gave the Torah and the Gospel. Alas, he did not protect them. Muslims say that Christians and Jews corrupted the Torah and the Gospel. Is this true? According to Islam, yes – and no. “Because Islam is a stupid religion, says Christian Prince (CP), made by a stupid mental idiot, it contradicts itself.” CP is going to show that Shabir Ally, in trying to prove that the Christians and Jews corrupted their book, ends up proving the opposite. Someone will ask Shabir how the Qur’an was preserved. Because he is overconfident he makes statements that destroy what he is trying to prove.

Everything people do is according to a divine plan. The Muslims believe there is nothing out of the divine plan. The Bible, according to Islam, is God’s word, and, if God’s word, is eternal (like the Qur’an), and therefore it cannot be corrupted. Allah is the infallible guardian of his word, Shabir Ally says that Allah is the guardian and preserver of the Qur’an only, protecting it from all corruption. He tries to prove his point by quoting Surah 15:9:

The Reminder al-thikra

Asad: Behold, it is We Ourselves who have bestowed from on high, step by step, this reminder: and, behold, it is We who shall truly guard it [the Qur’an, from all corruption].

Malik: Surely We have revealed this reminder (The Qur’an); and We will surely preserve it Ourself.

Pickthall: Lo! We, even We, reveal the Reminder, and lo! We verily are its Guardian.

Yusuf Ali: We have without doubt sent down the Message; and We will assuredly guard it (the Qur’an, from corruption).

Shabir Ally, and the four Muslim translators above, state that the “Reminder” in Surah 15:9 above refers to the Qur’an only, and so the Bible is excluded.

Christian Prince says surah 15:9 has nothing to do with the Qur’an. Not so fast; CP is trigger happy. A better approach is to ask Shabir, which CP then does, the question, “How do you know [the word “reminder” in] this verse has to do with the Qur’an? Let us examine, says CP, other verses where “reminder” appears. “Reminder” in surah 21:7 refers not to the Qur’an but the Bible.

Malik: The Rasools [Prophets] which We sent before you, O Muhammad, were also human to whom We sent revelation. If you, O objectors, do not know this, then ask the people of the reminder (Jews and Christians).

Revelation” refers to the “reminder” (the Bible) of the Jews and the Christians.

Asad: For [even] before thy time, [O Muhammad,] We never sent [as Our apostles] any but [mortal] men, whom We inspired-hence, [tell the deniers of the truth,] “If you do not know this, ask the followers of earlier revelation.” (Asad note: “Literally “followers of the Bible, which in its original, uncorrupted form represented one of God’s “reminders” to man”).

Malik: The Rasools [Prophets] which We [Allah] sent before you, O Muhammad, were also human to whom We sent revelation. If you, O objectors, do not know this, then ask the people of the reminder (Jews and Christians).

Pickthall: And We sent not (as Our messengers) before thee other than men whom We inspired. Ask the followers of the Reminder if ye know not?

Yusuf Ali: Before thee also the apostles we sent were but men to whom We granted inspiration: if ye realize this not ask of those who possess the Message.

Christian Prince points out that when these verses were “sent down” the Qur’an had not been completed yet. The Muslim might argue that the “reminder” (“message”), in this case, the Qur’an, can still be in progress, and therefore, not the finished product,

Surah 21:105 also refers to the Bible as the “reminder/message/revelation”:

Malik: We wrote this in The Zaboor (Psalms xxxvii, 29) after the reminder (Torah given to Musa): that as for the land, My righteous servants shall inherit it.”

Pickthall: And verity We have written in the Scripture, after the Reminder: My righteous slaves will inherit the earth:

Yusuf Ali: Before this We wrote in the Psalms after the Message (given to Moses): My servants the righteous shall inherit the earth.”

Christian Prince comments:

Allah made people responsible for protecting the bible. He found out (according to Muslims) he was wrong to do that, so never again. So he decided with the Qur’an that he would preserve it himself. Look how stupid, how silly this argument is. This Abdul is saying to us that Allah made a stupid decision, he trusted the rabbis, which means that Allah is not the almighty, because if the almighty is almighty, he should not trust someone who is corrupt. How do we know the rabbis are corrupt? Because the Muslims are accusing the rabbis of being corrupt. No decent man will corrupt his holy book unless he is corrupt himself, evil. Allah decides to correct it. So today (Allah says) I made a stupid mistake, and I promise you I will never do it again. I tried it once, I will never try it again. [Comment Allah, according to the Islamic literature tried it thousands of times in different times with different groups/languages]. This is the stupid logic of this religion called Islam. Can you find me anyone more stupid than Allah, because he is trusting the wrong ones to protect his book? And Allah is the one who is divine, and he (Shabir Ally) just said to us that no human being can do anything except from the plan of Allah. So how does this work? It’s stupid it’s funny, it’s dummy.”

I comment on CP’s last sentence: CP, like the majority of Christians, do not understand that owing to the fact that God is sovereign over everything, it follows that His decrees, even evil acts (such as the crucifixion) are compatible with man’s freedom, and thus man is responsible for the evil he does. (See more here: “We can’t let confusion get in the way of God’s decree: Response to a liberal Muslim”). With regard to the preservation/corruption of the Bible, the issue is that God (of the Bible) says (Isaiah 40:8) says: “The grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of our God endures forever.” And the (Muslim and Christian) Messiah says: “Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.”

Alan Shlemon in his “Ambassador Guide to Islam” (pp.23-24) writes:

And Sayyid Ahmad Husayn Shawkat Mirthi notes how counterintuitive it is to claim that a religious community would knowingly corrupt their own scriptures. The ordinary Muslim people acknowledge that the Injil is the Word of God. Yet they also believe through hearsay (taqlidi ‘aqida) that the Injil is corrupted, even though they cannot indicate what passage was corrupted, when it was corrupted, and who corrupted it. Is there any religious community in this world whose lot is so miserable that they would shred their Muslim scholar Mahmoud Mustafa Ayoub agrees. He doesn’t believe that Christians and Jews corrupted the Bible. Instead, he believes they misunderstood and misapplied it. Contrary to the general Islamic view, the Qur’an does not accuse Jews and Christians of altering the text of their scriptures, but rather of altering the truth which those scriptures contain. The people do this by concealing some of the sacred texts, by misapplying their precepts, or by “altering words from their right position” (4:26; 5:13, 41; see also 2:75).”

However, this refers more to interpretation than to actual addition or deletion of words from the sacred books. The Qur’an does not claim Jews and Christians corrupted the Bible. What it claims is that certain Jews and Christians distorted the meaning, interpretation, and application of their scriptures. The biblical text has remained the same prior to, during, and after the 7th century. Muslims who claim the Bible is corrupt either force the Qur’an into contradiction or worse, make Allah sound like a failure. The Qur’an assured Muslims in the 7th century that they could trust the Bible. If it was reliable then, it is reliable today. Here is a chart from Shlemon, p. 17.

shlemon chart

Yet another verse: “If you are in doubt regarding what We have revealed to you, ask those who have been reading the Book before you (Muhammad). In fact, the truth has indeed come to you from your Rabb: therefore, do not be of those who doubt” (Surah 10:94):

There are only two possibilities: the Bible is corrupted or not corrupted. If corrupted then Qur’an is wrong because it says the Bible is not corrupted. If the Bible is not corrupted then the Qur’an is also false and that score because it denies events in the Bible such as the death and resurrection of Christ.

Finally, Jesus says to the Jews, “unless you believe that I am (Greek ego eimi, Hebrew Yahweh) you will die in your sins.” He says this to Muslims, Jews and the rest of mankind.

We can’t let confusion get in the way of God’s decree: Response to a liberal Muslim

Where in the US or Western Europe would the mainstream media publish the letter below? Envy my freedom in South Africa (it’s a country, not a region)?

My letter (culled from my longer Our fatalism pacifies us as Muslims: God’s decree and free will).

“Our fatalism pacifies us as Muslims” (Weekend Post, Port Elizabeth, South Africa, December 5, 2015), Imraahn Ismail Mukkaddam writes: “Whenever I speak to people of faith – Muslim and others – about the condition of humanity and the planet, I am confronted by the Qur’anic and Biblical revelations that all of this mess we find ourselves in is God’s will. As believers in a Supreme Being we affirm and attest to God’s will, predestination and divine decree, but to what extent are we allowing ourselves to be pacified into sheepish acceptance of what we perceive as inevitable without questioning if this is really predestined… Is the Allah who we worship really such a cruel creator that He contradicts His foremost attributes – that of being Most Merciful and Most Beneficent?”
I reply:

Isaiah 46:10 says: “I make known the end from the beginning, from ancient times, what is still to come. I say, ‘My purpose will stand, and I will do all that I please.’” Compare Isaiah with two Islamic definitions. The first, taqdeer (fate/destinity): “Every individual has been given free-will and should use it to work towards attaining the pleasure of Allah and that Allah has full knowledge of the individual’s actions; past, present and future.” The second, qadr (God’s decree/predestination/predetermination).

God’s purpose is to know everything in eternity and in time-space. And knowing all this pleases him. But, as it says in Isaiah above, the reason why God knows the end from the beginning is because he decreed it, he purposed it, he ordained it. How to reconcile this with human free will? The Muslim is caught between the rock of taqdeer (God’s foreknowledge of human free acts) and the hard place of qadr (God’s decree/predestination/predetermination.

In the following remarkable verse in scripture on the crucifixion of Christ, the Bible juxtaposes human and divine causality. “This man was handed over to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross” (Acts 2:23). Ironically, Muslims reject one of the most reliable of all historical facts, that Christ died on the cross. The Qur’an says “They killed him not” (Surah 4:57)..

Acts 2:23 shows that God’s deliberate plan, his decree (which is the reason why he foreknows it) to have Jesus, the Son of God crucified (planned from eternity in colloboration with the Son) is compatible with the free agency of man to do this evil deed. Do we reject the scripture because we can’t understand how God decree and free human agency fit together? Our confusion is caused by our limited understanding of the relationship between the finite and the infinite, time and eternity. We have a limited insight into the divine mind: “The concatenation of all his counsels is not intelligible to us; for he is as essentially and necessarily wise, as he is essentially and necessarily good and righteous.” (Stephen Charnock, 1632 -1680. “A discourse on the wisdom of God”).

In passing, I’m sure Mukkaddam is grateful to be living in a country – are you living in South Africa, Mukkaddam? – with a free press where he is safe to express his frustration with Islam, which can’t be done in Muslim countries, in the US and in Europe.

Islam: bad for Kafirs, bad for Muslims. james White’s definitely gone soft on Islam

I have often found James White’s  ambiguous attitude regarding violence frustrating. In his latest podcast on the topic, he says “people always say I am soft on Islam.   Why am I soft on Islam? Because I dare to recognise that just as there are differences of viewpoints among Mormons..there are liberal Catholics and conservative Catholics…and because I dare extend that (same) truthful observation that is founded in reality and truth to Muslims that (people say) I am soft on Muslims.” (7:21).

He presents two videos from Muslims, one about Muhammad’s peaceful and saintly qualities (Nothing to do with my Prophet) the other about the faithfulness of ISIL to  Muhammad’s legacy (audio on the podcast 50:02).

He castigates Christians (1:06:5 on the podcast) for not appreciating that “the sources from which Islam derives its self-understanding are too inconsistent and incoherent to provide a meaningful resolution to the problems we are facing in the world today due to groups like ISIS…Here in these two videos you see illustrated exactly what I have been talking about from the beginning, because both of them claim to be drawing from the Qur’an, from the Sunna of the prophet (Muhammad), from the Hadiths, and coming to diametrically opposed conclusions.”

White says he is not soft on Islam, and refers to his many debates and books in which he demonstrates –  and I say, admirably – the “flaws” (White’s description) in Islamic theology. For example, its misunderstanding of the trinity and the incarnation.  When, though, it comes to violence, there exists for White “radical” Islam, represented by ISIS, and true Islam represented by the non-violent Muslims. He sings a different, non-ambiguous, tune in his article “Breaking the Cross, Killing the Swine: Truly Thinking About ISIS and the Murder of 21 Copts”:

“Oh sure, I know some of them are doing it just because they love murder and bloodshed and evil.  But some of them do it because they really believe Muhammad was a prophet and that Muhammad showed them the way the day he and his cohorts did exactly what they did on that beach…not to 21 Christians but to between 400 and 900 Jews of the Banu Qurayza tribe. Now, I am well aware of the fact that Islamic apologists say this was a just act because the Jews had, allegedly, betrayed Muhammad in the Battle (or, non-battle, in a more realistic sense) of the Trench (AD 627).  But the reality is that Muhammad was a man of war, not a man of peace. You are changed when you personally behead someone.  The blood may wash off the hands, but it is not washed out of the mind.  Muhammad died in 632, so this was done toward the end of his life.  The progression of his life was from peaceful monotheistic prophet to warring leader and general, not the other way around.  Add in the doctrine of abrogation and you can see why the scholars of Al Qaeda and ISIS and Boko Haram have plenty of material to draw from in forming their theology.  They teach that the later revelations abrogate earlier ones (such as the later command not to consume alcohol abrogates the earlier commands which allowed it even though in moderation).  Sadly, that means the later sections of the Qur’an, which contain the warfare passages, are considered by most (not all) Muslims in the world to be more authoritative than the peaceful passages that came earlier.”

Here’s the rub:  the later revelations are unambiguous. This does not mean that different Muslim camps won’t arrive at “diametrically opposed conclusions” (White above). I explain: The scientific method consists of the following steps: 
Ask a Question    * Do Background Research    * Construct a Hypothesis    * Test Your Hypothesis by Doing an Experiment    * Obtain results * Analyze Your Data  * Draw a Conclusion  * Communicate Your Results.

With regard to the science of textual analysis (historiography), the stages are similar: ask questions, do research, which requires skills in fields such as linguistics and history, (no, we don’t do experiments), obtain results, analyse the results (data), arrive at a conclusion, and finally communicate our results and conclusions. We communicate in various ways: reports, debates, teaching; and in religion, often, witnessing/defending in the attempt to make converts.

James White is in my book, very good at biblical exegesis and doctrine. And I love him for that. He says that the job of the exegete is to discover the single meaning of the words on the page. So, if someone disagrees with him about, say, the Reformed (Protestant Reformation) assertion that the Bible teaches that one will not desire to trust in Christ unless He first raises one from spiritual death, releasing one from the bondage of the radically corrupt will (Ephesians 2:10 ff`), White will say that such a person has arrived at the wrong conclusion of what is, in truth and reality, the unequivocal meaning of the text.

With regard to the Qur’an, Allah is obsessed with the unequivocal clarity of his revelation, which he can’t emphasise enough:
Qur’an 6:114—Shall I seek for a judge other than Allah, when He it is Who has sent down to you the Book fully explained?
Qur’an 11:1—This is a Book, whose verses have been made firm and free from imperfection and then they have been expounded in detail.
Qur’an 12:1—These are verses of the clear Book.
Qur’an 16:89—And We have sent down to thee the Book explaining all things.
Qur’an 24:46—Certainly We have revealed clear communications, and Allah guides whom He pleases to the right way.
Qur’an 27:1—These are verses of the Qur’an—a book that makes (things) clear.

To return to the question of violence and Islam:

Many people know  bits and bobs about violence in Islam, but they don’t want to talk about it. They, including many historians? know little about the history of Islam. How did the Middle East go from being Christian to being Muslim?  The  Sira (Muhammad’s biography) relates that the last years of his life consisted of a plethora of killing and subjugating Christians. This  mayhem was continued after he died by his “companions” and relatives, It has never stopped. We were told that Rome fell when German invaders occupied Rome. Not true. The German invaders set up their own version of the Roman Empire,  but preserving classical culture. They spoke Latin, hired Roman philosophers, lawyers and teachers to  run their schools. The Byzantine (Greek-speaking) Empire took over, and  kept the Classical Empire running.

After Muhammad’s death, his Muslim “apostles” – caliphs,companions, relatives went on the rampage in all directions. Preaching the Qur’an? Not on your nelly. They went on a continual Jihad spree,  killing thousands upon thousands of Christians – and fellow Muslims. Syria – the epi-centre of Christian culture was destroyed, just as ISIS is doing today to the remaining  Christians in Syria, ISIS has excellent mentors.  The brutal asssaults went on for centuries in many countries – 540 battles in all. Most historians, and Muslims, can only scratch up 5 battles. In Spain, the heads of Spanish knights were piled so high that you couldn’t see over them.

Classical Christian civilisation was destoyed by Islam. And now the followers of Muhammad want to lop off its remaining vestiges in Europe, which they very well might achieve in the near future – thanks to the effete Europeans themselves, who have practically ditched their Christian heritage.

White is Hard on systematic theology  but soft on missiology (making converts). None of White’s dozens of moderated public debates with Muslims has been on how Islam makes converts. Such a debate, if of any worth, will have to deal with Islam’s use of force and violence to bring new members into its fold. And keep them there. The penalty of leaving Islam, or attempting to do so, has been, and continues to be, in many times and climes, slicing off such members from the Umma (Islamic nation) –  slicing off heads. In this department, ISIS is following the greats of the “golden” age of Islamic history. If James White wants to continue his friendly  debates with Muslims in large public forums – I don’t need to tell him, give missiology a miss.

In conclusion, Islam is bad for Kafirs (unbelievers). But also bad for Muslims; those Muslims, of which there are many, who either/both do not know much, do not want to know much, and do not want to obey much, Islam.

Muslm striker, Emmanuel Adeyabor, explains why he follows “Prophet jesus.” scores own goal

Football star, Tottenham Hotspur striker, Emmanuel Adebayor, a Muslim, gives “13 reasons why Muslims follow Prophet Jesus.” Here are some of the reasons with my comments:

EMMANUEL MUSLIM

  1. There is only one God.


    Comment: Christians also believe there is only one God. Mohammed-Allah didn’t understand anything about One God-Three Persons, because He had no clue what was in the New Testament. Mohammed said Muslims should follow the Gospel because it came, he said, from God. “And let the People of the Gospel judge by what Allah has revealed therein. And whoever does not judge by what Allah has revealed, then it is those who are the defiantly disobedient.” (Surah 5:47).


    2. There is no mediator between God and man.


    Comment: Jesus said in the Gospel he is the (only) mediator between his Father and man: “I am the way the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father but by me” – including all Muslims.



    3. Jesus greeted with “Peace be upon you.”



    Comment: Muslims do the same. It was a common greeting among Jews and Christians for centuries. Jews still say it: “Shalom.” C’mon Christians get with the Muslims and the Jews.

    

4. Jesus had a beard.


    Comment: In a similar Islamic advert about the Muslim Jesus (Issa), it said “long beard.” Will a goatee then make you a shirker? (See Why should Christians follow Mohammed? The answer lies in the beard).

    5. Jesus was circumcised.


    Comment: Jesus fulfilled the law and so was circumcised. Muslims reject/do not understand the relationship between physical circumcision in the Old Testament (the Law) and spiritual circumcision of the heart in the New Testament; they ignore/oppose the New Testament.


    The big lie of Islam, which nullifies its whole anti-Christian enterprise, is that it denies that Jesus died on the cross:
    “That they said (in boast), “We killed Christ Jesus the son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah”—but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but so it was made to appear to them, and those who differ therein are full of doubts, with no (certain) knowledge, but only conjecture to follow, for of a surety they killed him not—nay, Allah raised him up unto Himself; and Allah is Exalted in Power, Wise” (Surah 4:157-158). For Muslims, history died the day those verses “came down” because if you reject the solid historical fact of the crucifixion of Jesus Christ, all history is called into question. Also, who created this deception for Christians? Allah. Bizarre, at best. What is more, if Jesus did not die, no blood of Christ shed, there is no resurrection, no mediation, no salvation. Muslims, even famous football stars, end up in the sin bin, permanently.

    Emmanuel (God with us), you have scored an own goal.

ISIS: when Theology matters, blood spatters

Summary

The terrorist researcher, Scott Atran, in his interview on Russia Today, says ISIS attracts frustrated young people, but never mentions they are ALL Muslims. His political correctness is galling.
James White’s position is confusing. He says, on the one hand, the theology (for example, the nature and person Christ) of the Qur’an is flawed. What floors me is that he does not give the impression that the deluge of violent passages in the Qur’an are also theological.
Al Mohler does a better job. He says that what “ISIS is doing is in keeping with historic Islamic teachings and is doing so while recruiting thousands of Muslims (not merely “young people” Scott Atran) with many coming from the most modernized cities in the world including Paris and London and Amsterdam and Bonn and Minneapolis and New York.”

Here is what many Muslims say (see article for context):
“This hatred and violence (of “hard-line Islamist terrorists”) has to be fought by all peace lovers… We should support the call by over 100 Muslim scholars and clergymen” that the Islamic State “through their acts of violence, violated fundamental principles of Islam.” They point out that such acts as “harming or mistreating believers of other religions of the Scripture… and ignoring the reality of ‘contemporary times’ are actually forbidden in Islam… Simply put, IS is a group of mass murderers masquerading as unbelievers.”

Should I insult the intelligence of these Muslim scholars by calling them stupid and ignorant? Or should I call them cunning deceivers? The violent and detestable actions of ISIS are right on the Qur’anic money. The Qur’an is a deluge of directives to subdue and kill non-Muslims and apostate Muslims, and contains commands that are, at best, out of kilter in “contemporary times.” Space does not allow me to cite the dozens of texts on violence against the “unbelievers.” It’s mostly useless telling non-Muslims to read the Qur’an. But if they do, they must not expect any historical coherence: the Qur’an does not appear in the order that Allah is purported to have revealed it. For example, the final “revelations” – about Muslims forcing Jews and Christians to either 1. convert to Islam, 2. submit to paying a crippling tax and being subdued, or 3. being killed – were “revealed” in Surah 9, long before the end of the printed Qu’ran. There are few “peace” passages in the Qur’an, but these were “revealed” to Mohammed early in his career, when he was weak. These peace passages were abrogated (by Allah) by all the nasty stuff that “came down” later when Mohammed had a big enough army to subdue or kill his enemies.

————————————–

Someone who fears Islam is called an Islamophobe. To most this term means, which it does not mean, “hatred of Islam.” Fear of what in Islam? Violence. If you fear violence, you’re going to hate it, and often hate those who perpetrate it. Is there anything to fear and hate in Islam? This article examines this question with regard to ISIS.

Politicians and the mainstream “Western” media no longer say ISIS or ISIL – IS for short – but DAESH. ISIL hates this latter term, one reason being that it replaces the two key terms “Islamic” and “State.” Opponents of the term IS say it is neither a state nor Islamic; not Islamic because it is an aberration of Islam. In this article, I examine whether the term “Islamic” is indeed a misnomer.

Dr. Scott Atran, anthropologist and terrorism researcher, was in conversation with Sophie Shevardnadze (host of Sophieco) on Russia Today, “ISIS sings the same tune Hitler did, promising Utopia in the end” (Atran), 16 Nov, 2015.

Here are a few pertinent excerpts from the conversation. (the term “ISIS is used – Russia Today retains the term). My comments appear in italics:

SS: There are a lot of people joining ISIS from all over the world, not only their region, or the Asian region, but we’ll talk about it a bit later. But, at the same time, ISIS displays of brutality helped governments rally in action against the terror group. Does ISIS not care if it’s provoking an international bombing campaign?

DR.SA: Oh, they actually want it. Again, if you read their sort of Bible, “The Management of Savagery”, they want to provoke the intervention of the Great Powers like the U.S. and Russia, that is their plan. Their plan is to create a sort of apocalyptic scenario, to create as much chaos as possible, in which they can take root and offer their own alternative…. George Orwell in his review of Adolf Hitler’s “Mein Kampf” back in 1939 have described the essence of the problem. He said: “Mr. Hitler has discovered that human beings don’t only want peace and security and comfort and free from want. They want adventure, glory and self-sacrifice, and Mr. Hitler’s appealed to that – and while the Oxford student union at that time vowed to never fight again, Mr. Hitler has 80 million people fall down to his feet, in one of the most advanced countries in the world.” How did that happen? Again, ISIS is appealing to the same sort of sentiments, that have been appealed to throughout human history.

Comment

Atran does not mention the Qur’an. That is verboten in any “Western” discussion of ISIS. If “The Management of Savagery is their “sort of” Bible (Atran), then the Qur’an is their Bible.

SS: You know, ISIS has a message that “everything is bad and corrupt, and we will change the world for the better”, a message of revolution, a message of cause; and, in response, all we can muster is basically: “oh, ISIS is baad” – you know, only negating what they say, not offering any counter-cause. What kind of a positive idea can stand up to ISIS’ slogans?

DR.SA: I think you’ve hit the nail on the head. I mean, the counter-narratives I hear, at least in the Western Europe and in the U.S. are pathetic. They basically say: “look, ISIS beheads people, they’re bad people” – God, didn’t we know about that before already? The way ISIS attracts people is that they actually are both very intimate and very expansive. So, they’ve brought in people from nearly 90 countries in the world, and they spend hundreds, sometimes even thousands of hours on a single person, talking about their family, saying to young women, for example, in the U.S.:”Look, we know you love your parents and your brothers and your sisters, and we know how hard it’s going to be to leave them, but there are more things to do in life. Grander things. More important things. Let us try to help you explain it to yourselves when you get here, and explain it to them.” And they go through the personal history and grievances and frustrated aspirations of each of these individuals, and they wed it to a global cause, so that personal frustration becomes universalized into moral outrage, and this is especially appealing to young people in transitional stages in their lives: immigrants, students, between jobs, between mates, having just left their genetic family, their natural family and looking for a new family of friends and fellow travellers. This is the age that ISIS concentrates on, and in response, most of the countries of the world, and the Muslim establishments, who call for “wasatiyyah”, moderation. Well, everybody who has ever had teenage children, they know how worthless that is. So, the counter-narratives we’re proposing are pretty pathetic.

Comment

Why don’t you mention that these frustrated young people are Muslims? Followers of Mohammed, servants of Allah. That would be what they would say is the heart of their calling.

SS: So, you’re saying, you know, the Western volunteers for ISIS are mostly youth in transition and parents usually have no idea what their kids are up to – so, is it a sort of teen rebellion, is it a form of a teen rebellion?

DR.SA: Right, it’s driven by young people, well actually most revolutionary movements are driven by people who are fairly well off and well educated, especially doctors and engineers, for some reason, ever since the XIX century, because they can show commitment and hands on operation knowledge of things… But yes, it appeals to young people and their rebelliousness, and again, that’s the specific target population of the Islamic State – and they provide a very positive message.

Comment

Young Muslim people only. You couldn’t join ISIS unless you were a Muslim or wanted your head chopped off, or if you’re a Christian or Jew – and lucky- allowed to live in subjugation to ISIS, which is what the Qur’an teaches.

SS: But, you know, we’re used to think that young people, teen in transition, like you say, they want freedom. They want to have fun, they want to have sex and drugs and drink. What we see with ISIS is forbidding this, for young people and for everyone – yet, there is this flock towards ISIS. I still don’t understand why, because whatever they’re trying to convince young people of, it’s pretty obvious there is no freedom where they are going. And young people usually strive for freedom…

DR.SA: Yeah, but I believe they do think they’re getting freedom. Instead of freedom-to-do-things, it’s freedom-from-having-to-do-things, where a life well-ordered and promising…

about. The choices are too great, there’s too much ambiguity and ambivalence. There are too many degrees of freedom and so one can’t chart a life path that’s at all meaningful, and so these young people are in search of significance, and ISIS is trying to show them a way towards significance. Again, we have to take it very seriously, that’s why I think it’s the most dynamic counter-cultural movement since WWII, and it’s something I don’t think people are taking seriously, just dismissing them as psychopaths and criminals and… this, of course, is something that we have to destroy… People talk about the clash of civilizations – well, that’s, woefully, inadequate. I mean, that is not the clash of civilizations, that is the collapse of civilizations, as…this is the Dark Side of globalisation, as territorial cultures are imploding in the face of globalization and young people, who used to get their learning and their guidance from their elders are now completely divorced from their elders and they’re hooking up peer-to-peer, across the world, across the territories, over the internet, and they’ve developed a facility in moving across the Internet that’s quite phenomenal. They’re hooking up and making alliances with one another that actually can bring people to kill for one another even if they’ve never met up before – and this is new.

Comment

To describe this as merely a sociological issue is typical of Western (secular) Academia, politics and the media. True, seeking to live a significant life is correct, The key question is where do these these young people (aka Muslims) find their significance? They find it in living – and, glory of glories, dying for Allah. It seems that Atran, the anthropologist, models himself on the Aristotelian maxim. Anthropos politikon zoon esti – “Man is a socio-political animal.”

SS: So, there’s no way to win this social media war against the Islamic State?

DR.SA: Yes, there is; and that is coming up with some kind of equally adventurous and glorious message that can give significance to these young people (who are) finding this call to glory and adventure quite enticing. Again, it’s understandable. Now, how to get them away from that? How to bring them into some kind of prod…You know, people talk about “the youth problem” in the Middle East and in the world – well, it’s not really a problem if you have the right motivation. It could be a “youth boom”, because young people are the source of creativity in the world. But there’s no channels now that I’ve seen existing, whether it is in UN or on the level of governments, where youth can have a voice…

Comment

ISIS has (like Islam from its inception) has come up with not some kind but a particular “kind of equally adventurous and glorious message that can give significance to these young people (who are) finding this call to glory and adventure quite enticing.” It’s called Islam.

Here are two Christian appraisals of the ISIS question. James White and Al Mohler. While White pussyfoots a bit, Mohler gets close to the heart of the matter.

Here is my transcription of a pertinent chunk from white presentation (Dividing Line, 17 Novwmber, 2015, minute 41 ff). My comments appear in italics:

(Many Christians argue that) “they (ISIS) are the real Muslims, and any Muslim that tells you “I don’t support what Isis is doing” is deceiving you and lying to you. This is what is really really concerning me…what I am hearing from so many people, social media, on television, is that Isis represents the real Islam, and any other view is a fake Islam… Here’s the problem: on the one side you have those who say that Isis has nothing to do with Islam, Islam is a religion of peace. On the other side you have those who say this is the real Islam, anyone who does this (what Isis does) is not a true Muslim. Both of them share the same black and white mind set that cannot function in this world, and that is that everything is got to be this or that, and nothing in between.

Comment

Surely ISIS must be either “real Islam” (white?) or “nothing to do with Islam (black). So logically it indeed a black or white issue. What we don’t want is some kind of Jesuit casuistry where if the Pope says black is white or grey, then so it is. The question then is “Which one is correct?”

Many in ISIS believe that they are orthodox, practising Muslims doing their best to follow the example of their prophet as they understand it. There are also among them men who simply love evil; they love to rape, they love to maim, to kill, and they are more than willing to do the religious stuff that allows them to do those things…Isis has its theologians, Isis has its people who are going to have their doctoral degrees and will be able to make their arguments from the literature, from the Hadiths and so forth… This (different interpretations of the literature) is an Islamic problem. On the other side, there are Muslims who are saying they (ISIS) are wrong, here is why they are wrong, here is what they are ignoring… I don’t think that the sources they (the two sides) are relying on are authoritative enough and consistent enough to solve the debate between these two sides.

Comment

White sounds like Reza Aslan, the professor of creative writing and self-styled professor of religions, including the New Testament. That is what I do for a living, actually.” (Reza Aslan). calls himself a Muslim believes that each religion brings its own truths to the table. Atheists call Aslan a “new atheist.” New atheists are like the emperor who says “look at my beautiful clothes,” when, as we know, he is really naked. The “new atheist” is a nude atheist – let it all hang out; we’ve all got something to give: Muslim, Christian, Jew, Jubu (Jewish Buddhist).

The sources are the Qur’an and the authoritative Hadiths. Muslims say you have to read it in Arabic, which means that 80% of Muslims, whose mother tongue is non Arabic, have to rely on their Arabic speaking leaders. We are reminded of the Roman Catholic Church, where the Bible and the Liturgy existed only in Latin, so that the “laity” had to rely on the priests. When White debates Muslims, Roman Catholics and non-Calvinist Protestants, his starting point is that the biblical texts have one unequivocal meaning and the issue is finding out what this single meaning is. White has had many debates with Muslims on Christian doctrines such as the Trinity and the Incarnation. He argues that the Qur’an misunderstands these doctrines.

White has written “What Every Christian Needs to Know About the Qur’an,” which, like all his books, debates and his theology in general is based on the premise that there is a right and a wrong way to read texts; that there is a real meaning that needs to be discovered. White says:

I am a scholar of religions with degrees including one in the New Testament and fluency in biblical Greek and biblical Hebrew and biblical Aramaic, who has been studying the origin of Christianity for four decades. I also happen to be an expert with degrees in the history of religions. So why did I write this book on Islam? In brief, I wrote it because it is my job as an academic. And because I wanted – very important – to show that Islam is flawed. (See here).

Comment

In other words, for him, it is indeed a black and white issue.

What I am concerned about, White continues, is that there are Christians who would deny that there are any on this side (the peaceful side)… We want to force Islam to be monolithic, all on the same page (as Isis).

If you don’t recognize the difference between these groups, says White, how are you any different from the jihadis likewise refuse to make any distinction between us and what we believe. It does not make any sense to me, and it frightens me greatly, and it makes me wonder how any of these people who are adopting this attitude can be seriously praying for an opportunity to actually invest themselves in witnessing to one of these Muslims.

Comment

It seems that White above holds the multiple-interpretations view of the Qur’an only when it applies to the flood of “violent” passages in the Islamic literature. Yet elsewhere he says (Breaking the Cross, Killing the Swine: Truly Thinking About ISIS and the Murder of 21 Copts):

Oh sure, I know some of them are doing it just because they love murder and bloodshed and evil. But some of them do it because they really believe Muhammad was a prophet and that Muhammad showed them the way the day he and his cohorts did exactly what they did on that beach…not to 21 Christians but to between 400 and 900 Jews of the Banu Qurayza tribe. (See here for a more in-depth discussion of this event in Muhammad’s life). Now, I am well aware of the fact that Islamic apologists say this was a just act because the Jews had, allegedly, betrayed Muhammad in the Battle (or, non-battle, in a more realistic sense) of the Trench (AD 627). But the reality is that Muhammad was a man of war, not a man of peace. You are changed when you personally behead someone. The blood may wash off the hands, but it is not washed out of the mind. Muhammad died in 632, so this was done toward the end of his life. The progression of his life was from peaceful monotheistic prophet to warring leader and general, not the other way around. Add in the doctrine of abrogation and you can see why the scholars of Al Qaeda and ISIS and Boko Haram have plenty of material to draw from in forming their theology. They teach that the later revelations abrogate earlier ones (such as the later command not to consume alcohol abrogates the earlier commands which allowed it even though in moderation). Sadly, that means the later sections of the Qur’an, which contain the warfare passages, are considered by most (not all) Muslims in the world to be more authoritative than the peaceful passages that came earlier.”

Comment

It seems White tries hard not to offend Muslims, which is understandable, but loves theology too much to be politically correct. Others (like atheists) say we must not take the Islamic literature, or any religious literature too literally. When we read that Muslims must kill idolators/polytheists, it is silly to say that we must not take this “literally.” Half-literally then? Keep the “ki” and discard the “ll.” And replace “ll” with “ss?” (The verse of the sword: Sura 9:5 and Jihad). KISS the polytheists?

Another Christian theologian, Al Mohler, says that what “ISIS is doing is in keeping with historic Islamic teachings and is doing so while recruiting thousands of Muslims (not merely “young people,” – see Scott Atran above in his interview with Sophieco) with many coming from the most modernized cities in the world including Paris and London and Amsterdam and Bonn and Minneapolis and New York.”

Comment

Great Scott, all of these recruits are Muslims!

Christians operating out of a Christian world-view understand that we have to look at these issues theologically precisely because even as theology is always very near in the headlines in this particular case, it’s even in the foreground. We’re talking about a group and we’re talking about an Army and we’re now talking about a state that names itself the Islamic State… the reality is that Christians understand that where theology is engaged it is engaged at the most basic level and nothing makes that point more graphically and chillingly then the statement that was actually released by ISIS in the aftermath of the murderous attacks, indeed the massacres that took place in Paris. Part of the statement reads, “Eight brothers wearing explosive belts and assault weapons targeted areas carefully chosen in the heart of the French capital. The French stadium, during a match of two crusaders countries French and Germany where the imbecile of France Francois Hollande was present, the bataclan where hundreds of idolaters participating in a party of perversity were assembled, in addition to other targets in the 10, 11 and 18 arrondissement– all simultaneously.”

ISIS then went on to say, “The ground of Paris trembled under their feet and its roads became too tight for them. The toll of this attack is a minimum of 200 crusaders killed and even more injured, the praise and honor belongs to Allah. “Allah helped his brothers and gave them what they hoped for.”

One of the things we must note is the insane insistence on the part of so many Western leaders to deny the obvious and that is the theological identity and the theological ambition behind these attacks in Paris. But the sad fact is that so many modern secular leaders of modern secular governments now increasingly on both sides of the Atlantic lack even the basic theological understanding to know what is at stake in these attacks. (Underlining added). For example, the statement is very clear about martyrdom. And even though martyrdom is something most Western leaders think they understand what they likely do not understand is that martyrdom in Islam is the only way to be assured of spending eternity in paradise… Martyrs for the faith are promised entrance into paradise.

Here is one of the oddest most ironic and most dangerous presuppositions of modern secular governments and that is that theology really doesn’t matter… (Underlining added). As we must repeat over and over again, we are not at war with all Muslims and for that we should be very thankful. But we also have to be equally candid about the fact that our foe in this case is clearly Islamic and is driven by an Islamic worldview, Islamic theology and a very clear and growing Islamic identity.

Comment

There is nothing odd about the fact that atheists (secularists) trash theology; atheist don’t liker them theists, especially the “organised” (as in religions) ones. Mohler thinks “theology matters.” James White thinks so too. (see his weekly radio programme “Theology Matters”).

We should not be, as Mohler says, “at war with all Muslims.” Bernard Haykel, professor of Near Eastern Studies , says – “A lot of Muslims are embarrassed by Isis.” True, because they, like the majority of members of all religions, do not take their religion seriously and/or are too ignorant to do so.

Those Muslims who are embarrassed by ISIS, are they prepared to say to the world that members of ISIS are apostates? Not if you want to keep your head. I cite from an editorial of my city’s newspaper, “Weekend Post,” Saturday, June 27, 2015, “Horrific attacks must be stopped.”

This hatred and violence (of “hard-line Islamist terrorists”) has to be fought by all peace lovers… We should support the call by over 100 Muslim scholars and clergymen” that the Islamic State “through their acts of violence, violated fundamental principles of Islam.” They point out that such acts as “harming or mistreating believers of other religions of the Scripture… and ignoring the reality of ‘contemporary times’ are actually forbidden in Islam… Simply put, IS is a group of mass murderers masquerading as unbelievers.”

Should I insult the intelligence of these Muslim scholars by calling them stupid and ignorant? Or should I call them cunning deceivers? The violent and detestable actions of ISIS are right on the Qur’anic money. The Qur’an is a deluge of directives to subdue and kill non-Muslims and apostate Muslims, and contains commands that are, at best, out of kilter in “contemporary times.” Space does not allow me to cite the dozens of texts on violence against the “unbelievers.” It’s mostly useless telling non-Muslims to read the Qur’an. But if they do, they must not expect coherence: the Qur’an does not appear in the order that Allah is purported to have revealed it. For example, the final “revelations” – about Muslims forcing Jews and Christians to either 1. convert to Islam, 2. submit to paying a crippling tax and being subdued, or 3. being killed – were “revealed” in Surah 9, long before the end of the printed Qu’ran. (See James White again. Why are peaceful muslims not speaking out against Boko Haram).

As ISIS would say “Theology matters, therefore blood spatters.”

Bernie Sanders, the US democratic presidential candidate says ISIS is not the problem; global warming is – and jobs. Prince Charles says the reason why there are so many non-Europeans flooding Europe is because they are fleeing global warming. Where did they find these people?

Want to stop ISIS? Give them jobs – and stop global warming.

Visions: why does God give them only to some?

 

Dozens of Muslims say that a vision of Jesus led them to Christian conversion. Most Calvinist Christians say that all these visions are delusions. With regard to conversion, a Calvinist believes that in conversion, one has to be raised from spiritual death (regenerated/born again) before one can or wants to believe in Christ as saviour. I hold the Calvinist view of conversion, which means the whole process of conversion is a sovereign act of God’s grace/mercy. An Arminian Christian friend to whom I tried to explain the sovereign grace of God in salvation sent me a link to a video of a Muslim, Afshin Javid, who came to Christ through a vision. After seeing the video, I believe Javid had a genuine experience of “I am the way, the truth and the life…I am Jesus Christ, the living God…” (Minute 9:30).

I asked my Arminian friend why does God give this vision to some but not to other Muslims? No answer. I said because God says, “I will have mercy on who I want to have mercy and compassion on whom I want to have compassion” (Exodus 33:19, Romans 9:15).She rebuked me, saying “It must be something else.” I left it there because I wanted to avoid yet another unpleasant confrontation. This difference in the nature of God’s sovereignty between Calvinists and Arminians shimmers through the whole of their opposing theologies, and consequently through every aspect of the way they pray, understand and communicate their faith.

I said to my friend that there are only two possibilities of why God gives only some Muslims a genuine vision of Jesus Christ: either God has mercy on them or He sees something good in them and consequently rewards them with a vision. My friend said that there might be a third reason. Most Arminians will say both of the following are true: there is nothing in them that can influence God to save them, AND – which seems to be this third thing my friend means – God has mercy on those who show a desire to be born again; which my friend says does not mean that they deserve to be saved. Odd. Regarding the desire to be saved, the Bible says that no one in their natural state can have the desire to be saved:

The person without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God but considers them foolishness, and cannot understand them because they are discerned only through the Spirit” (1 Corinthians 2:14). And – “5 Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. 6 The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace. 7 The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God’s law, nor can it do so. 8 Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God” (Romans 8).

What pleases God most? To regenerate you (birth you again). The Arminian (Jacob Arminius), in contrast, says that the natural man can please God. Other Arminians, like my friend, would say that the natural ISH (“man” – Hebrew) “cannotish” please Him. (See The Arminian view of free will: Those who are in the flesh cannotish please God).

Run for President 2016: A Muslim in the White House

Regarding the recent furore over Ben Carson’s remark that he was not partial (that is, not impartial – English!) to seeing a Muslim President in the White House, Dean Obeidallah, the comic Muslim, said on CNN today that he cherishes his friendships with non-Muslims.
He said Americans are very ignorant of true Islam, and that they often take the Qur’an out of context. As far as taking things out of context, that, indeed, is a common failing. I must say, however, that this kind of criticism is often both a pretext and a protest that hides either ignorance or duplicity – or a penchant for comedy. For example, consider Obeidallah’s statement that he has many non-Muslim friends.

Please don’t fall for the knowledgeable, believing, obedient Muslims’ “friendliness.” If it were genuine they would end up – they know it well – in hell. Qur’an (5:80) – “You will see many of them (professing Muslims) befriending those who disbelieve; certainly evil is that which their (professing Muslims) souls have sent before for them, that Allah became displeased with them and in chastisement shall they abide.” Muslims who befriend unbelievers will be thrust into everlasting torment.

Obeidallah, if he is on or comes to any nodding acquaintance with the above verse would probably cry “You’ve taken it out of context; that only applies when Muslims are attacked by enemies of peace.” Tripe.

Stand-up comedy in the West is much ado about parody; not an Islamic thing; unless cultural Muslims are considered Islamic. For many Muslims in the West, as with Jews and Christians, religion is a cultural thing, no more.

The beauty of Islam lies in its seventy faces

 

Related: See my ISIS, politics and Islam and Documentaries on Understanding Isis and Al Nustra.

 

Rhetorical question: If my title is meaningful, what meaning do you give to it?

We’re all ignorant until God gives us light. Does that mean we’re off the hook? Not at all. Acts 2:22-24 “Men of Israel, hear these words: Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God unto you by mighty works and wonders and signs which God did by him in the midst of you, even as ye yourselves know; 23 him, being delivered up by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye by the hand of lawless men did crucify and slay: 24 whom God raised up, having loosed the pangs of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.” If you don’t understand the truth that God’s decrees – He decrees everything – do not exonerate our ignorance, we would be ignorant of what He has revealed about Himself in the Bible. If we are to obey this revelation, we have to accept that the ideas conveyed by the words deal with certitudes, which demand a one-to-one correspondence between the words (signifiers) and concepts (signifieds). One would expect this rule to be flouted among agnostics/atheists in the post-modern strain, but one would hope not among theologians, especially Christian theologians. Yet, since the abandonment of scriptural inerrancy, postmodernism has been making inroads into Christian theology.

I discuss post-modernism in Christianity and philosophy, which is preparation for the discussion on Islam.

Here is a transcript of part of the Q&A session of the 2004 Emergent Theological Conversation with Walter Brueggemann. (The audio and the Brueggemann’s theses can be found here). There are four Q&A sessions. In this discussion, I deal with Session 1.

Q and A Session 1 (Parts in brackets have been added)

Question:How do you live with the ambivalence of biblical narrative.”

Brueggemann: “We all have a hunger for certitude. The problem is the Gospel is not about certitude, it’s about fidelity. So, what we all want to do, if we can, is immediately transpose fidelity into certitude, because fidelity is a relational category, and certitude is a flat mechanical category (such as systematic theology, says Brueggemann in his theses ). So, we have to acknowledge our thirst for certitude, and then to recognise that if you had all the certitudes in the world, it would not make the quality if your life any better because what we must have is fidelity. …It all went haywire in the 17th century with Lutheranism and Calvinism when we tried to outscience science and switch into categories of certitude …Fidelity is like having a teenager in the house and you never get it settled for more than three minutes, and you’ve got to keep doing it again or you don’t have a relationship.

I elaborate on Brueggemann’s distinction between “certitude” and “fidelity.”

For Brueggemann, any interaction between 1. certitude, which he considers limited because it is restricted to a single meaning (univocity) and 2. fidelity, should be frowned upon. We should, therefore, be open, as Jacques Derrida (the father of “Deconstuction”) says, to “an unlimited number of contexts over an indefinite period of time,” and thus unrestricted interaction between suffering persons desiring to tell their personal stories. For Brueggemann and Derrida, and all poststructuralists (who believe there is no metaphysical centre, no fixed structures), there exists no such entity as “Being,” no such entity as essence, no such thing as a True story, but only (human) beings telling their true-ish stories, which are the only stories that ultimately matter. And if the Bible stories are able to buck – and back – them up, thank you Holy Spirit. (See Certainty and fidelity in biblical interpretation: the decinstruction of Walter Brueggeman).

There is at least one Muslim who reminds me of this postmodern trend. In the forum “Does Islam need a better PR,” one of the participants says:

What we’ve got to realise is that Islam is not a monolithic block; there are many different interpretations and many different streams. Now the violence of a few violent extremists, who are against the teachings of the the Qur’an, that is the problem. This casts a shadow over the entire media discourse. The vast majority of Muslims condemn these actions and are against them, There is a completely different version, a beautiful version of Islam where social equities, social justice, all these things such as be kind to the weak, be kind to the elderly. All that is part of our value system (minute 2;34 ff).

Summary in a syllogism

Major premise: There are many different interpretations and streams in the Qur’an.

Minor premise: Violent extremism does not belong to the many different interpretations of the Qur’an.

Conclusion: Therefore violent extremism cannot be one of the legitimate interpretations of the Qur’an,

How can I be sure that what the participant says – about the rich variety of different meanings of Islamic texts – has only one meaning (interpretation). In her eyes, the very beauty of Islam is that you can select any interpretation you want and you’ll always find it bristling with beauty and compassion – for not only the poor and widows but also for Christians, Jews, idolators and Muslim apostates.

A course on rabbinical Judaism teaches that interpretation is ”bound to a text with wide room for interpreting its meaning?” In the room are seventy rabbis, each doing his own thing, or rather one rabbi with seventy faces. “There are seventy faces to the Torah: turn it around and around, for everything is in it” (Midrash Bamidbar [Numbers] Rabba 13:15); everything in the sense that it contains the building blocks of everything in and under heaven, which Jacob Neusner calls the “grammar” of rabbinical theology (See Jacob Neusner and Rabbinical Theology).

A Muslim version: A course on Islamic interpretation teaches that interpretation is bound to a text with wide room for interpreting its meaning? In the room are seventy Imams, each doing his own thing, or rather in the room in only one Imam with seventy faces. There are seventy faces to the Qur’an (and Hadiths): turn it around and around, for everything is in it.

Our Muslim participant reminds me of Jacques Derrida. In Derrida’s deconstruction (there is no other kind of deconstruction), language – the sediment of the desire to mean, to communicate – has no locatable centre nor retrievable origin; its existence is a network of differences between signifiers (sounds or written symbols signifying meaning), each tracing and tracking the other. In deconstruction there is no necessary connection between the desire to signify (to mean) and the signifiers (linguistic elements – sounds and writing) that evoke that desire:

[I]f language is not inherently determined by a set of univocal (single) meanings, then language use, given an unlimited number of contexts over an indefinite period of time, becomes an unrestricted interaction of signifiers, the Nietzschean affirmation of free play without nostalgia for a “center” or for ‘origins’” (J. Derrida 1981, Dissemination. Translated by Barbara Johnson. London: Athlone, 278-93).

Our Muslim participant’s joy over the free play of meanings inherent in the Qur’an clashes with Allah’s obsession with clarity, which he can’t emphasise enough:

Qur’an 6:114—Shall I seek for a judge other than Allah, when He it is Who has sent down to you the Book fully explained?

Qur’an 11:1—This is a Book, whose verses have been made firm and free from imperfection and then they have been expounded in detail.

Qur’an 12:1—These are verses of the clear Book.

Qur’an 16:89—And We have sent down to thee the Book explaining all things.

Qur’an 24:46—Certainly We have revealed clear communications, and Allah guides whom He pleases to the right way.

Qur’an 27:1—These are verses of the Qur’an—a book that makes (things) clear.

Contrary to the Muslim participant in the Forum, the Qur’an claims to be not only clear but the clearest book in the world – which must imply clearer than the instruction manual on how to plug in my TV. Allah says his Qur’an is not only clear but makes everything else clear. For me, Allah’s “clear” means “it says what he means” where the what is not whatnot, but an explicit what. Similarly, the Qur’an is crystal clear that the ISIS types represent the apotheosis of Islam. (See David Wood’s ISIS and the Radicalization of Young Muslims).

“These horrific attacks must stop,” say Muslim scholars. Yeah, right

All three of my letters about Islam – in response to letters from Muslims – were published in my city’s newspaper. Here is the fourth I sent to the same newspaper for publication, this time in response to an editorial. Maybe, fourth time unlucky.

I cite from your editorial of Saturday, June 27, 2015, “Horrific attacks must be stopped.”

“This hatred and violence (of “hard-line Islamist terrorists”) has to be fought by all peace lovers… We should support the call by over 100 Muslim scholars and clergymen” that the Islamic State “through their acts of violence, violated fundamental principles of Islam.” They point out that such acts as “harming or mistreating believers of other religions of the Scripture… and ignoring the reality of ‘contemporary times’ are actually forbidden in Islam… Simply put, IS is a group of mass murderers masquerading as unbelievers.”

Should I insult the intelligence of these Muslim scholars by calling them stupid and ignorant? Or should I call them cunning deceivers? The violent and detestable actions of ISIS are right on the Qur’anic money. The Qur’an is a deluge of directives to subdue and kill non-Muslims and apostate Muslims, and contains commands that are, at best, out of kilter in “contemporary times.” Space does not allow me to cite the dozens of texts on violence against the “unbelievers.” It’s mostly useless telling non-Muslims to read the Qur’an. But if they do, they must not expect coherence: the Qur’an does not appear in the order that Allah is purported to have revealed it. For example, the final “revelations” – about Muslims forcing Jews and Christians to either 1. convert to Islam, 2. submit to paying a crippling tax and being subdued, or 3. being killed – were “revealed” in Surah 9, long before the end of the printed Qu’ran.

Please don’t fall for the knowledgeable, believing, obedient Muslims’ “friendliness.” If it were genuine they would end up – they know it well – in hell. Qur’an (5:80) – “You will see many of them (professing Muslims) befriending those who disbelieve; certainly evil is that which their (professing Muslims) souls have sent before for them, that Allah became displeased with them and in chastisement shall they abide.” Muslims who befriend unbelievers will be thrust into everlasting torment.

Abraham, a Christian? I’ll be stoned!

As many who read Christian blogs know “Christ” is English for the Greek “Christos, which is Greek for the Hebrew “Mashiach” (Messiah).

Muslims say Abraham was a Muslim. If you mean he submitted (Arabic “Islam”) to God, yes, he was. Jews say he is the father of God’s chosen people – the Jews. Yes, he IS. Abraham, of course, wasn’t Jewish, but a “wandering” (Deuteronomy 26:5).

So, how can Abraham be Christian, a follower of the Messiah – who, two thousand years after Abraham, took on flesh in Jesus? Because Jesus said so, and called those who disbelieved him – members of God’s chosen people – children of the devil.

John 8:46-59
Which of convicts me of sin? And if I say the truth, why do ye not believe me? 47 He that is of God hears God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God. 48 Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil? 49 Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me. 50 And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeks and judges. 51 Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death. 52 Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death. 53 Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom make thou thyself? 54 Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honourme; of whom ye say, that he is your God: 55 Yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying. 56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. 57 Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? 58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am. 59 Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

Where did Abraham “rejoice to see my day, and saw it.” One place was:

11 And the ANGEL OF YAHWEH called to him from heaven and said, “Abraham! Abraham!” And he said, “Here I am.” 12 And he said, “Do not stretch out your hand against the boy; do not do anything to him. For now I know that you are one who fears God, since you have not withheld your son, your only child, from ME.”

John 8:51
Truly, truly, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death.

Psalms 95:8-11
8 Harden not your heart, as in the provocation,

and as in the day of temptation in the wilderness:

9 When your fathers tempted me,

proved me, and saw my work.

10 Forty years long was I grieved with this generation,

and said, It is a people that do err in their heart,

and they have not known my ways:

11 Unto whom I sware in my wrath

that they should not enter into my rest.

Wives and mothers in Islam: Mother, why is your skin so green? “Ask your father.”

Son – Mother, why is your skin so green?
Mother – Ask your father.
Son – The Prophet of Allah said that  mother is three times more worthy than  father.
Mother – I’m YOUR mother, not your father’s.

From the Hadiths

The wife

Bukhari, vol. 7, # 715.

“Narrated Ikrima: ‘Rifaa divorced his wife whereupon Abdur-Rahman married her. Aisha said that the lady came wearing a green veil and complained to her (Aisha) and showed her a green spot on her skin caused by beating. It was the habit of ladies to support each other, so when Allah’s messenger came, Aisha said, “I have not seen any woman suffering as much as the believing women. Look! Her skin is greener than her clothes! When Abdur-Rahman heard that his wife had gone to the prophet, he came with his two sons from another wife. She said, “By Allah! I have done no wrong to him, but he is impotent and is as useless to me as this,” holding and showing the fringe of her garment. Abdur-Rahman said, “By Allah, O Allah’s messenger! She has told a lie. I am very strong and can satisfy her, but she is disobedient and wants to go back to Rifaa.” Allah’s messenger said to her, “If that is your intention, then know that it is unlawful for you to remarry Rifaa unless Abdur-Rahman has had sexual intercourse with you.” The prophet saw two boys with Abdur-Rahman and asked (him), “Are these your sons?” On that Abdur-Rahman said, “Yes.” The prophet said, “You claim what you claim (that he is impotent)? But by Allah, these boys resemble him as a crow resembles a crow.””

Silas notes several items from this Hadith.

1) A woman was beaten by her husband because of marriage discord. The women did not commit any illegal sexual act. She was beaten and bruised because her husband said she was “disobedient” and he thought she wanted to go back to her former husband.

2) Aisha said, “I have not seen any woman suffering as much as the believing women. Look! Her skin is greener than her clothes!

The woman was badly bruised. Her skin was green. Aisha acknowledged that the Muslim women were suffering (from being beaten) more than the non-Muslim women. Muslims today proclaim that Islam gave women rights but Aisha, the “mother of the believers” said otherwise! She said that the Pagan women were treated better!

3) Muhammad did not rebuke the man for beating his wife. In fact, he reproached the women for saying Rahman was impotent. Even though she was hurt Muhammad accepted her bruises and beating because to Muhammad it was not abuse. In Muhammad’s eyes she deserved the beating.

Mother

A man came to the Prophet and said, ‘O Messenger of God! Who among the people is the most worthy of my good companionship? The Prophet said: Your mother. The man said, ‘Then who?’ The Prophet said: Then your mother. The man further asked, ‘Then who?’ The Prophet said: Then your mother. The man asked again, ‘Then who?’ The Prophet said: Then your father. (Bukhari, Muslim).

James White again: why are peaceful Muslims not speaking out against Boko Haram?

I hate being horrible to people, especially those whom other people hate so much, who happen also to be those to whom I am very grateful for shedding so much light on the beautiful truths of God’s sovereignty and his election of sinners to salvation. Such a man is James R. White of Alpha Omega ministries. I have no criticism of his teachings on Christianity – only delight. It’s what he says about Islam and Muslims – and only one thing – which makes me a smidgin mad.

In his most recent “Dividing Line” podcast (his podcasts don’t remain accessible gratis for long) of 9 April 2015, White says he is puzzled that peaceful Muslims don’t speak out about the atrocities committed by groups such as Boko Haram and Al Shabab. All White has to do is listen to his podcast of 1 November 2012, where he quotes several passages from the Qur’an, which promotes the torture and killing of non-Muslims.

I hope that now my relatives and friends will stop thinking I’m totally under the spell of that arch-Calvinist, James White. See, I can be impartial. I am determined to be so, as all good Calvinists are. And, dear James White, thank you for all you have taught me and others.

Also, there are no peaceful DEVOUT Muslims, unless they’re liars or ignorant of the Qur’an.

Related James White: It’s sad that most Muslims believe in violence and harshness against unbelievers. Sad yes, but is it true?

The killing of Christian students at Garissa university: did Shabab misunderstand the Qur’an?

Last week the Somali militant group Shabab attacked Garissa University College, and killed more than 100 Christian students. Did they misunderstand the “peaceful” teaching of the Qur’an that there is no compulsion in religion, and that, therefore, people are free to choose their poison? Not at all, for they know that the Qur’an, as it clearly says, is the clearest book on the planet, which is enough to make it the eternal word of Allah. This book contains no boobs, and thus perfectly describes the doctrine of abrogation, which states that where apparent contradictions exist, the older revelations are abrogated (cancelled and superceded) by later revelations. Hence the bit about no compulsion in religion, which “came down” when Muhammad had little power, was abrogated by the following verses when he had supreme power.

Fight Jews and Christians and subdue them:

Qur’an (9:29) – “Fight against such of those to whom the Scriptures (the Bible) were given as believe neither in God nor the Last Day, who do not forbid what God and His apostle have forbidden, and do not embrace the true Faith, until they pay tribute out of hand and are utterly subdued.”

As for other religions or secularists, slay them:

Qur’an (9:5) – “When the sacred months are over slay the idolaters wherever you find them. Arrest them, besiege them, and lie in ambush everywhere for them. If they repent and take to prayer and render the alms levy, allow them to go their way. God is forgiving and merciful.”

So did Shabab misunderstand the Qur’an? Of course they did; If Christians (or Jews) don’t want to convert but are prepared to pay a tribute tax and feel humiliated – permanently, there lives are spared. The ones they should kill, if they don’t want to convert to Islam, is the rest – such as Western politicians and liberals with their icky “The Holy Qur’an says…”

Why should Christians follow Muhammad? the answer lies in the beard

The following advert appealing to Christians appeared in the Weekend Post, 28 March, 2015 of my city. It illustrates the Islamic doctrine of Takiyah (dissimulation.

The religion of Jesus

Followed law of Moses – fasting praying regularly, prostrate one’s face (like Muslims do).
Fought for justice and truth, using force when necessary (John 2:15).
Prayed to God directly without intermediary.
Greeted with peace (as Muslims do).
Wore a long beard and long robe (as Muslims do today).
Never ate Pork.
Never celebrated Christmas.
Called his people to one almighty God.

At the bottom of the advert in Capitals: “THIS IS THE TRUTH, FOR THOSE WHO SINCERELY SEEK THE RELIGION OF JESUS. SUBMIT TO ALLAH THE ONE ALMIGHTY GOD.”

The following advert directed at Christians appeared in the Weekend Post, 28 March, 2015.

 

To understand the dissimulation (taqiyah) of Islam, one needs to know about “Jihad” (Struggle). It consists of three stages:

First, non-violent “stealth” Jihad, where it pretends to accept all religions. In this first stage, Muslims are in the minority with no political or military power. This is the present situation in the West.

Second, “defensive” Jihad – violent or non-violent – which does not necessarily mean that Muslims are defending themselves against violent attack, but against verbal criticism (as I am doing which could get violent) or pictorial criticism (cartoons, always violent).

Third, “offensive” Jihad, where Muslims take control, as in the violent Muslim takeover many centuries ago of the Christian Middle East and Christian North Africa; and in modern times, in Syria and Iraq by ISIS, faithful followers of the Qur’an. Muslims in modern Western democracies don’t need to overturn governments by violence; their relatively large birthrate will do the trick, where the violence will – inevitably – begin once Islamic Sharia law rules.

The advert above belongs to “stealth” Jihad. All the things said in it about Jesus are true, but many true things – indeed the very heart of Christianity – have been stealthily omitted. Let us ignore three asinine ones on the advert’s list: yes, he never wore a cross around his neck, yep he never celebrated Christmas (don’t Jews celebrate birthdays?), and, for sure, he wore a beard and a dress.

What exactly does the advert omit? Here are a few: He is the Son of God, the second person of the triune Godhead, 2. He died – on a cross, 3. He shed his blood as a substitute for sinners. 4. He rose from the dead. 5. He said he is the mediator between his Father and man: “I am the way the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father but by me” – including all Muslims. The Qur’an rejects all of these.

Here is a selection of mild verses from the friendly, peaceful Qur’an, which says what awaits Jews, Christians and other non-Muslims when Islam is a slam dunk.

Don’t befriend Jews and Christians:

Qur’an (5:51) – “O you who believe! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends; they are friends of each other; and whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them; surely Allah does bretenot guide the unjust people.”

Qur’an (5:80) – “You will see many of them befriending those who disbelieve; certainly evil is that which their souls have sent before for them, that Allah became displeased with them and in chastisement shall they abide.”

Qur’an (9:23) – “O ye who believe! Choose not your fathers nor your brethren for friends if the take pleasure in disbelief rather than faith. Whoso of you taketh them for friends, such are wrong-doers.”

Fight Jews and Christians and subdue them:

Qur’an (9:29) – “Fight against such of those to whom the Scriptures (the Bible) were given as believe neither in God nor the Last Day, who do not forbid what God and His apostle have forbidden, and do not embrace the true Faith, until they pay tribute out of hand and are utterly subdued.”

As for other religions or secularists, slay them:

Qur’an (9:5) – “When the sacred months are over slay the idolaters wherever you find them. Arrest them, besiege them, and lie in ambush everywhere for them. If they repent and take to prayer and render the alms levy, allow them to go their way. God is forgiving and merciful.”

Lastly, the advert includes as one of Jesus’s good Muslim qualities the use of violence when necessary, and cites John 2:15, which says “He made a switch of cattle-fodder rushes, he drove them all out of the temple, and the sheep, and the oxen; and poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew the tables.”

Swish Swoosh. Clink, Clanck, Ba-a-a-a, Mooo, Ouch.

Enough already!

The Torah and the Qur’an for preschoolers

I compare briefly the basic principles of  the Jewish Talmudic view of scripture, the Islamic view of the Qur’an, and the prevalent Western secular view of Islam.

The Torah

What is most important in textual interpretation should be context, that is, a single context – the grammatical-historical (surface) context. The surface text of scripture, namely, its normal linguistic and communicative properties, should be the best guide to its meaning. There are, of course, parts of scripture where the surface text is a hard nut to crack; for example, some of the visions of Ezekiel and parts of the book of Revelation. Those who believe scripture is God-breathed (theopneustos – breathed out by God; divine “expiration”) also believe that there are no deeper meanings lurking below the surface text. So, if one differs in the interpretation of a text, the interpreter is at fault.

In contrast, Rabbi Akiva Tatz  says in one of his lectures, “any six-year-old can understand” the Written Torah. Orthdox Judaism generally believes that one has to enter the pardes (the deeper levels) of Torah to derive any lasting good. These deeper levels are not found in the Written Torah, but in the Oral Torah, which for some Jewish movements is not found deep in the Written Torah but above and beyond it. For Tatz, Kabbalah (means “received”) is the apogee of Oral Torah. It is not always, or perhaps not even often, the case that the Oral Torah and the Written Torah complement each other. Often it is rather that the Written Torah implements what the Oral Torah dictates it to mean. For Tatz, it is the Kabbalah  that dictates the meaning of Oral Torah (See  Christian slave learns Midrash magic, The slaughter of scripture: Let his blood be on us and our children and The Written and Oral Torah: Which is Primary?

Islam and the Qur’an

Islamists (those who know and believe what is written in their texts) say, perhaps not in so many syllables, the Qur’an can be gobbledygook by itself – in Arabic and translation. Anyone who has read the Qur’an – in Arabic or translation – should agree with this view , if not heartlily. In contrast to the Torah or the Bible as a whole, there is no historical context in the Qur’an neither any meaningful connection between chapter and verse. Islam relies on the Hadiths to explain the Qur’an. The Hadiths are a vast collection of the purported deeds and sayings of Muhammad.

There are bits in the Qur’an – for example “kill” doesn’t mean “kiss” –   that any preschooler can understand. For example, after you explain what idolatory, beleagure, and Zakat, Surah 9:5 is a piece of cake- And when the forbidden months have passed, kill the idolaters wherever you find them and take them prisoners, and beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them at every place of ambush. But if they repent and observe Prayer and pay the Zakat, then leave their way free. Surely, Allah is Most Forgiving, Merciful.

Here is one Muslim’s “proof” that anti-Islamists use this verse to malign Islam: “The verse does not say infidels it says idolaters.” Duh. Merci beaucoup for nothing, says the Great Satan. Which takes us West.

Secular West and Islam

Western politicians and the intelligentsia, for example, in the land of free, are abysmally ignorant of the Qur’an; they swallow everything the Islamophiles feed them. For example, one of many lies is that Muslims don’t hate Jews; all they want is an equitable solution to the Israeli-Arab question. The truth is that Islam’s hatred of Zionism and the Jews are two edges of the same sword. The Imam of the Al-Haram mosque in Mecca, Sheikh Abd Al-Rahman Al-Sudayis, said in one of his sermons:

“Read history and you will understand that the Jews of yesterday are the evil forefathers of the even more evil Jews of today: infidels, falsifiers of words, calf worshippers, prophet murderers, deniers of prophecies … the scum of the human race, accursed by Allah, who turned them into apes and pigs … These are the Jews – an ongoing continuum of deceit, obstinacy, licentiousness, evil, and corruption …”

The intense Islamic hatred of the Jew did not originate with the Declaration of the State of Israel in 1948, but with “Allah.” In three places in the uncreated, eternal Qur’an, Allah calls Jews monkeys and/or pigs. For example: Surah 2:65 “And you know well the story of those among you who broke Sabbath. We said to them: “Be apes—despised and hated by all” (Trans. Maududi).”

(Islamic Jew-Hatred: It’s in the Qur’an).

When it comes to Islam, Western leaders and journalists are delusional. Here is another bit of hilarity from David Wood – “Pop Quiz for Potential World Leaders.” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXGFQ8TKzZ8&feature=youtube_gdata_player

The Arabic Issa (Jesus) in the Qur’an: Shouldn’t he be a woman, a Hebrew one?

Michael Heiser is a very good Hebrew scholar. I thank him for his profoundly interesting series on the “Two powers” in the Hebrew Bible (The LORD and THE ANGEL of the LORD). What I want to touch on briefly here is the origin of the Qur’anic name for the Hebrew “Yeshua” (Jesus) with a little (unwitting, if not witty) help from Heiser.

In one of his replies to questions on his blog, he corrects one person referring to Yeshua as Yahusha: “… there is no such word as “Yahusha” in Hebrew. Israel’s Messiah was named “Yeshua” – that is the Hebrew word, if you can read Hebrew; or better yet “Eshoa” if you want to get real technical, since the everyday language and therefore naming-process was in Aramaic.” http://michaelsheiser.com/TheNakedBible/bible-versions/

In the Qur’an, Yeshua is called Issa. Critics have pointed out (for example, Sam Shamoun of answeringislam.org that he doesn’t know where Allah/Muhammad got Issa from, because, Shamoun says, the Hebrew is Yeshua; and the Arabic for Yeshua would be a close equivalent and not anything like Issa. For one thing Arabic would not drop the initial consonant. The Aramaic “Eshoa” set me thinking. Muhammad had contact with the Eastern Syrian church whose Bible translation was in Syriac, a language similar to the Aramaic of Palestine. Actually the more accurate Syriac pronunciation of the Hebrew equivalent Yeshua seems to be “Isho.”

Ergo Isho (Syriac) -> Issa (Qur’an).

Now for proof that the Qur’an is divinely inspired or that Muhammad had a hearing problem:

If it was revealed or if he had heard the name “isha” instead, which is much closer to Issa, it wouldn’t look good calling Yeshua a woman (“isha” in Hebrew). Besides, Arabic is the eternal language of Allah. Also, with a name like Isha, Issa would only be half the man the Qur’an describes, because in Islam the witness of one woman is worth half a man’s.

Can you see it: Isha – “Go into half the world and bear witness to half the good news.”

Islamic Jew-hatred: It’s in the Qur’an

Robert Spencer on JihadWatch writes:

“Ace lawyer David Yerushalmi’s parting words below are worth setting in stone: “A word of advice to government bureaucrats doing the Muslim Brotherhood’s bidding: we will sue you and you will lose. Act accordingly.”

(AFDI [American Freedom Defense Initiative] free Speech victory: Philadelphia must run ad against  Islamic antisemitism, March 12, 2015. Read here for complete article).

The occasion was the Muslim Brotherhood-linked Council on American-Islamic Relations trying to stop the following Ad (appearing on buses):

Islamic-Jew-hatred new

“ADFI, why are you so anti-Islam, why do you hate us so?”

We don’t hate you, we hate what you  believe and promote

“We don’t know what you’re on about, you’re just, if we’ve said it thousand times, we’ve said it gazillions of  times, you’re a bunch of Islamophobes.”

On 7 March 2015, the local newspaper (Weekend Post) of my home town published my letter. It was a response to a Muslim cleric who lambasts a Christian Pastor for reminding (informing?) the cleric that Jesus was a Jew, and the Jews were the ones who brought the INJIL (Gospel) to the world. Here is my letter:

Sheikh Shamiel Panday (28 February) excoriates Rev Wilmot (21 February) for his support of “Zionists” (Panday). Rev Wilmot didn’t mention the word “Zionist”, he said “Jew.” My brief here is not Zionism but to show that in Islam the hatred of Zionism and the Jews are two sides of the same coin. The Imam of the Al-Haram mosque in Mecca, Sheikh Abd Al-Rahman Al-Sudayis, said in one of his sermons:

“Read history and you will understand that the Jews of yesterday are the evil forefathers of the even more evil Jews of today: infidels, falsifiers of words, calf worshippers, prophet murderers, deniers of prophecies … the scum of the human race, accursed by Allah, who turned them into apes and pigs … These are the Jews – an ongoing continuum of deceit, obstinacy, licentiousness, evil, and corruption …”

The intense Islamic hatred of the Jew did not originate with the Declaration of the State of Israel in 1948, but with “Allah.” In three places in the uncreated, eternal Qur’an, Allah calls Jews monkeys and/or pigs. For example: Surah 2:65 “And you know well the story of those among you who broke Sabbath. We said to them: “Be apes—despised and hated by all” (Trans. Maududi).”

Ibn Ishaq, an early and reliable biographer of Muhammad, writes that Muhammad called the Medinan Jewish clan, Qurayzah, “brothers of monkeys.” Did Muhammad mean this figuratively? The Iranian Medieval commentator Razi said the appearances of the Jews were changed, but they kept their human minds. Maududi says that in the original Arabic: “The words of the Qur’an … indicate that it was… a physical metamorphosis.” Whether literal or figurative, this does not affect the fact that Muhammad and company hated Jews. Jews thought he was a very confused Gentile; spinning for him bizarre yarns about Abraham and Solomon, which he (Allah?) incorporated into his Qur’an.

The Qur’an says: “Fight those who believe not in God nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by God and His Apostle, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued” (Surah 9:29).

In sum, the Islamic hatred of the Jew didn’t originate with Zionism but with Allah/Muhammad. To be faithful to the Qur’an, a Muslim must believe and imitate – if not “ape” – every word of it; and, therefore, either kill or subjugate Jews and make them feel subdued – very subdued.


jew hatred letter new

Do Muslims hate only Zionists; or do they hate all Jews? Because they are commanded to imitate if not ape the Qur’an?

The Imam of the Al-Haram mosque in Mecca, Sheikh Abd Al-Rahman Al-Sudayis, said in one of his sermons:
Read history and you will understand that the Jews of yesterday are the evil forefathers of the even more evil Jews of today: infidels, falsifiers of words, calf worshippers, prophet murderers, deniers of prophecies … the scum of the human race, accursed by Allah, who turned them into apes and pigs… These are the Jews – an ongoing continuum of deceit, obstinacy, licentiousness, evil, and corruption .
..” (Contemporary Islamist Ideology Authorizing Genocidal Murder).

The Muslim’s intense hatred of the Jew did not originate with the Declaration of the State of Israel in 1948, but with Allah. In three places in the Qur’an, Allah refers to Jews as monkeys and/or pigs. For example: 2:65 And you know well the story of those among you who broke Sabbath. We said to them: “Be apes—despised and hated by all” (Trans. Maududi).

Ibn Ishaq, an early and reliable biographer of Muhammad, writes that Muhammad called the Medinan Jewish clan, Qurayzah, “brothers of monkeys.” Did Muhammad mean this figuratively? The Iranian Medieval commentator Razi said the appearances of the Jews were changed, but they kept their human minds. Maududi says that in the original Arabic: “The words of the Qur’an … indicate that it was… a physical metamorphosis.” Whether literal or figurative, this does not affect the fact that Muhammad and company hated Jews; they thought he was a very confused Gentile.

The Qur’an says: “Fight those who believe not in God nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by God and His Apostle, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued” (Surah 9:29).

In sum, the Islamic hatred of the Jew did not originate with Zionism but with Allah/Muhammad. To be faithful to the Qur’an, a Muslim must believe and imitate – if not “ape” – every word of it: hate Jews.

James White: It’s sad that most Muslims believe in violence and harshness against unbelievers. Sad yes, but is it true?

It’s sad that most Muslims believe in violence and harshness against “unbelievers,” But is it true?

James White’s “Dividing line” podcast of 17 Feb 2015 was on the latest ISIS video wherein Coptic Christians were beheaded and criticisms of his article on the issue that he was “soft on Islam (minute 13).

Here are a few relevant excerpts from his article Breaking the Cross, Killing the Swine: Truly Thinking About ISIS and the Murder of 21 Copts:

“Oh sure, I know some of them are doing it just because they love murder and bloodshed and evil. But some of them do it because they really believe Muhammad was a prophet and that Muhammad showed them the way the day he and his cohorts did exactly what they did on that beach…not to 21 Christians but to between 400 and 900 Jews of the Banu Qurayza tribe. (See here for a more in-depth discussion of this event in Muhammad’s life). Now, I am well aware of the fact that Islamic apologists say this was a just act because the Jews had, allegedly, betrayed Muhammad in the Battle (or, non-battle, in a more realistic sense) of the Trench (AD 627). But the reality is that Muhammad was a man of war, not a man of peace. You are changed when you personally behead someone. The blood may wash off the hands, but it is not washed out of the mind. Muhammad died in 632, so this was done toward the end of his life. The progression of his life was from peaceful monotheistic prophet to warring leader and general, not the other way around. Add in the doctrine of abrogation and you can see why the scholars of Al Qaeda and ISIS and Boko Haram have plenty of material to draw from in forming their theology. They teach that the later revelations abrogate earlier ones (such as the later command not to consume alcohol abrogates the earlier commands which allowed it even though in moderation). Sadly, that means the later sections of the Qur’an, which contain the warfare passages, are considered by most (not all) Muslims in the world to be more authoritative than the peaceful passages that came earlier.”

One Muslim site says abrogation only refers to abrogation of scriptures previous to the Qur’an such as the Hebrew and Christian scriptures. On the contrary, the Qur’an says Muslims should accept the scriptures as divine revelation.

“And in their footsteps, We sent Issa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary) confirming the Taurat (Torah) that had come before him, and We gave him the Injeel (Gospel), in which was guidance and light and confirmation of the Taurat (Torah) that had come before it, a guidance and an admonition for Al-Muttaqun” (the pious – see V.2:2). S. 5:46 Al-Hilali & Khan; cf. S. 57:27.

“He [Jesus] said, “Lo, I am God’s servant; God has given me the Book, and made me a Prophet.” S. 19:30 Arberry.

“It is He Who has sent down the Book (the Qur’an) to you (Muhammad SAW) with truth, confirming what came before it. And he sent down the Taurat (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel).” S. 3:3 Al-Hilali & Khan. (See more here).

Another problem with the Islamic idea of the eternality of the Qur’an is its doctrine of “abrogation,” which it says is not abrogation. What else can this verse mean?

Surah 2:106

None of Our revelations do We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, but We substitute something better or similar: Knowest thou not that Allah Hath power over all things? (“We” is the “royal we”).

The problem is that if the Qur’an has been residing in the bosom of the all-knowing, all-perfect, all-good Allah from all eternity, why would it contain a plethora of substitutions of something better, which implies change, becoming, time-bound. I am reminded of the open theist whose God is not totally free but merely reacts to human decisions, and arranges his thoughts and actions accordingly.

Examples from the Qur’an: 1. Allah decrees that Muslims are not allowed more than four wives. Later the revelation comes down of something better for Mohammed who ends up with 9 wives or more. 2. Mohammed desires his adopted son-in-law’s wife, but feels this desire wrong. Then something better comes down and says something better – not in the vein of the Joseph-Mary incident – when Allah reveals to Mohammed that it’s ok to take this woman to wife. (See Abrogadabra in the Qur’an: Abrogation and/or substituting something for something better).

There are many more “something betters” in the Qur’an, one of them being most relevant:

When Muhammad was in Mecca outnumbered by unbelievers, he following words “came down”: Say: ‘O unbelievers, I serve not what you serve and you are not serving what I serve, nor am I serving what you have served, neither are you serving what I serve To you your religion, and to me my religion!’ Surah 109 Al-Kafiroon “disbelievers.”).

When Muhammad’s followers were powerful enough to defeat those with a differenT religion, the following revelation came down:

O believers, the idolaters are indeed unclean; so let them not come near the Holy Mosque after this year of theirs. If you fear poverty, God shall surely enrich you of His bounty, if He will; God is All-knowing; All-wise. Fight those who believe not in God and the Last Day and do not forbid what God and His Messenger have forbidden — such men as practise not the religion of truth, being of those who have been given the Book — until they pay the tribute out of hand and have been humbled. The Jews say, ‘Ezra is the Son of God’; the Christians say, ‘The Messiah is the Son of God.’ That is the utterance of their mouths, conforming with the unbelievers before them. God assail them! How they are perverted! They have taken their rabbis and their monks as lords apart from God, and the Messiah, Mary’s son — and they were commanded to serve but One God; there is no god but He; glory be to Him, above that which they associate with Him.” (Surah 9:28-31).

White said above: Sadly, (italics added) that means the later sections of the Qur’an, which contain the warfare passages, are considered by most (not all) Muslims in the world to be more authoritative than the peaceful passages that came earlier.”

Yes, it’s sad; indeed, frightening. But true.

White says “not all” Muslims agree that this surah is more authoritative than the peaceful passages. Two points: first Islamic law would consider these dissenters as apostates – they probably live in the West where they are safe from being killed; second, it’s not a question of which text is more authoritative, it’s a question of which one abrogrates the other. In Europe and the US, where Muslims are vastly outnumbered, they emphasise, according to the rules of their game, “to you your democracy.” If they are true to their Book, they look forward to the day when they will be powerful enough to replace democracy with autocracy, with Sharia law.

White says he is not soft on Islam, and refers to his many debates and books in which he demonstrates – admirably – the flaws in Qu’ranic theology. When, though, it comes to violence, there are, for White, “radical” Islam and (non-radical) Islam. Al Mohler makes the same distinction (see Al Mohler” Islamic theologies and extremism).

In his podcast (minute 21:30), White mentions the denunciation of Isis by Islamic scholars. It is true, as White says, that ISIS kills 10 Muslims for every one Muslim, therefore it is understandable that many Muslims denounce ISIS. This denunciation, however, does not prove who is more faithful to Qur’an and the Hadiths. And that should be the point when discussing the violence of ISIS. In this regard, White, in his article, says:

“The fact is that the sources from which Islam derives its theology and practice are radically incompetent to provide a means of self-correction and consistency. You can, by choosing your scholars and sources carefully, construct a peaceful construct in which to interpret the Qur’an and hadith. At the height of Islamic civilization, that is what was done.”

Surely, Allah was not that unclear. “In the Qur’an, writes David Wood, Allah claims to be perfectly clear in his commands (see 6:114; 11:1; 12:1; 15:1; 16:89; 22:72; 24:1, 34, 46; 26:2; 27:1; 28:2; 36:69; 41:3; 57:9; 65:11; etc.). Yet when critics quote the Qur’an, many Muslims insist that Allah means something very different from what he says. This should cause us to wonder: Is Allah’s speech clear, or is it horribly unclear? Could Allah be the the worst communicator ever? (See the video Is Allah the Worst Communicator Ever? (David Wood).

White says in his podcast (minute 27:30) it is time to distinguish between Muslims. Ok, let’s do it. There are Muslims who love Islam but hate all the horrible stuff in the Qur’an and Hadiths like killing unbelievers, chopping off feet and hands, beating wives (that is, “tapping them on the shoulder with a light toothbrush” – David Wood), prohibiting the odd tipple – Zuhdi Jasser says he doesn’t drink not because the Imams say so but because he wants to please Allah. There are a few Muslims who want democracy and a separation between religion and the state, for example, Zuhdi Jasser, who writes Islam needs to shuck off “the ossified precepts of salafism, Wahhabism, Islamism, and various pre-modern identifications of eastern Muslim culture. With that challenge we pray that an awakening – possibly very similar to the modernization of the West, which ushered in “enlightenment” – may occur within the consciousness of Muslims everywhere, forever separating spiritual Islam or the domain of God (faith) from the domain of government and the state (reason).” The War of Ideas”: Comment on the debate between Zuhdi JasJasser (American Islamic Forum for Democracy) and Imam Ahmad Shqeirat on “Does Islam need reform and if so, how?

White says in his podcast (minute 43) perhaps there are some Muslims who will be disgusted with ISIS killing the Copts and may decide to study Christianity. But he also said ISIS is “radical” Islam. So why would Muslims who are disgusted want to know what Christians really believe rather than what Muslims “really” believe?

In a debate between Zhudi Jasser and Robert Spencer, Jasser distinguishes betweeen Islam, which is good, and Isamism, which is bad. Spencer says, “Islamist” is an “artifical Western construct. We have to let the Qu’an and islamic jurisprudence say what it is; not moderates, nor Bin laden, nor ISIS. Wage war on unbelievers, subdue them etc . Here is a small sample of immodrate passages in the Qur’an.

Surah 2:191-193: “And slay them wherever you come upon them, and expel them from where they expelled you; persecution is more grievous than slaying. But fight them not by the Holy Mosque until they should fight you there; then, if they fight you, slay them — such is the recompense of unbelievers, but if they give over, surely Allah is All-forgiving, All-compassionate. Fight them, till there is no persecution and the religion is Allah’s; then if they give over, there shall be no enmity save for evildoers.”

4:34: “Men are the managers of the affairs of women for that Allah has preferred in bounty one of them over another, and for that they have expended of their property. Righteous women are therefore obedient, guarding the secret for Allah’s guarding. And those you fear may be rebellious admonish; banish them to their couches, and beat them. If they then obey you, look not for any way against them; Allah is All-high, All-great.”

4:89: “They wish that you should disbelieve as they disbelieve, and then you would be equal; therefore take not to yourselves friends of them, until they emigrate in the way of Allah; then, if they turn their backs, take them, and slay them wherever you find them; take not to yourselves any one of them as friend or helper.”

5:33: “This is the recompense of those who fight against Allah and His Messenger, and hasten about the earth, to do corruption there: they shall be slaughtered, or crucified, or their hands and feet shall alternately be struck off; or they shall be banished from the land. That is a degradation for them in this world; and in the world to come awaits them a mighty chastisement.”

5:38: “And the thief, male and female: cut off the hands of both, as a recompense for what they have earned, and a punishment exemplary from Allah; Allah is All-mighty, All-wise.”

8:12: “When thy Lord was revealing to the angels, “˜I am with you; so confirm the believers. I shall cast into the unbelievers” hearts terror; so smite above the necks, and smite every finger of them!–

8:39: “Fight them, till there is no persecution and the religion is Allah’s entirely; then if they give over, surely Allah sees the things they do.”

8:60: “Make ready for them whatever force and strings of horses you can, to terrify thereby the enemy of Allah and your enemy, and others besides them that you know not; Allah knows them. And whatsoever you expend in the way of Allah shall be repaid you in full; you will not be wronged.”

9:5: “Then, when the sacred months are drawn away, slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them, and confine them, and lie in wait for them at every place of ambush. But if they repent, and perform the prayer, and pay the alms, then let them go their way; Allah is All-forgiving, All-compassionate.”

9:29: “Fight those who believe not in Allah and the Last Day and do not forbid what Allah and His Messenger have forbidden — such men as practise not the religion of truth, being of those who have been given the Book — until they pay the tribute out of hand and have been humbled.”

9:111: “Allah has bought from the believers their selves and their possessions against the gift of Paradise; they fight in the way of Allah; they kill, and are killed; that is a promise binding upon Allah in the Torah, and the Gospel, and the Koran; and who fulfils his covenant truer than Allah? So rejoice in the bargain you have made with Him; that is the mighty triumph.”

9:123: “O believers, fight the unbelievers who are near to you; and let them find in you a harshness; and know that Allah is with the godfearing.”

47:4: “When you meet the unbelievers, smite their necks, then, when you have made wide slaughter among them, tie fast the bonds; then set them free, either by grace or ransom, till the war lays down its loads. So it shall be; and if Allah had willed, He would have avenged Himself upon them; but that He may try some of you by means of others. And those who are slain in the way of Allah, He will not send their works astray.”

Here is the son of a Hamas leader:

“Wherever I go in the world, people ask me about ISIS. And I advise them to ignore the endless debates about the peaceful versus violent nature of Islam and take a long, hard look at the Islamic State. ISIS is Islam, exposed in all its cruelty and ugliness, unchanged since Muhammad. The atrocities committed by ISIS are merely an extension of the atrocities committed by Islam’s prophet. The true Five Pillars of Islam are: Slaughter, Intolerance, Oppression, Hatred, and Global Dominion, because Muhammad was a slaughterer, intolerant, oppressive, hateful, and drove his armies to destroy everything and everyone that stood in the way of his establishment of a world caliphate. Muhammad said to the people of Mecca, “I have brought slaughter to you,” then he beheaded every male, young and old. ISIS immolated Jordanian pilot Muath al-Kaseasbeh, because Muhammad burned people alive. When the leader of the Jewish Bani al-Nadir tribe refused to reveal the location of his tribe’s treasures, Muhammad ordered his soldiers to “Torture him until you extract what he has.” So a fire was built on the chest of Kinanah bin al-Rabi. Again, when some of his men resisted Muhammad’s planned attack against the Byzantines at Tabuk, the prophet commanded that they be burned alive in the house where they were meeting. ISIS enslaves and rapes women because Muhammad did, even when he took a six-year-old little girl as his wife and consummated their union when she turned nine. ISIS mutilates and crucifies men, women, and children because its prophet did. …The only difference between 1,400 years of slaughter by Muslims, who follow the practices of Muhammad, and the carnage carried out today by ISIS is that today’s atrocities are broadcast throughout the world by social media.”

Muslims are to be friendly to Jews and Christians when Muslims are outnumbered, as in Europe and the US. When, however, Muslims become uppermost, they bring Jews and Christians under their yoke. Their protection? Not on your nelly. They have to acknowledge their inferior status, pay a hefty tax and feel humiliated and subdued. Or be killed.

Here are some of Muhammad’s later teachings about Christians and Jews:

Qur’an 5:51—O you who believe! do not take the Jews and the Christians for friends; they are friends of each other; and whoever amongst you takes them for a friend, then surely he is one of them; surely Allah does not guide the unjust people.

Qur’an 9:30—And the Jews say: Uzair is the son of Allah; and the Christians say: The Messiah is the son of Allah; these are the words of their mouths; they imitate the saying of those who disbelieved before; may Allah destroy them; how they are turned away!

Qur’an 98:6—Those who reject (Truth), among the People of the Book and among the Polytheists, will be in Hell-Fire, to dwell therein. They are the worst of creatures.

Sahih Muslim 4366—Muhammad said: “I will expel the Jews and Christians from the Arabian Peninsula and will not leave any but Muslim.”

Al-Bukhari, Al-Adab al-Mufrad 1103—Muhammad said: “Do not give the People of the Book the greeting first. Force them to the narrowest part of the road.”

Needless to say, these teachings can hardly be considered peaceful or tolerant.

In conclusion: If you want to be a Muslim but can’t swallow all t he ghastly things Muhammad and his companions did, amd more important, wah they commanded that all Muslims should do until the end of the world, if you want democracy, hate Sharia and its overkill of rules, making the 613 Jewish mitzvot (laws) a breeze, then why stay Muslim? You say because Islam is monotheistic. MonoGod. So, you think mono is the greatest thing since Swiss falafel. What’s the good of such a God if this one God is the being described in the Qur’an, who tells you to kill idolators (e.g. American atheists), and all the rest? There is one thing, however, Allah says you should heed: he tells you that no one can corrupt his revelation and so you should follow the Bible. (See Responding to the Muslim Objections of the Bible).

The Bible says that no one can understand the Bible because they are dead in sin. You need to be raised from the dead to see the truth. (Ephesians 2:1-10) The Qur’an doesn’t say that; it says do this, do that, don’t do this, don’t do that. And if you don’t like it, you’re free to leave and ask Issa to bear your sins. Hmmm.

Al Mohler: Islamic theologies and extremism

In his podcast “The briefing” of 18 February 2015, Albert Mohler Jr. discusses the topic “Atrocities of past week and year seem to lead to significant shift in Western view of ISIS.”

Quotes are from his “rush transcript” which do not differ from his podcast.

Mohler says, “the West (intellectual and political elite) is denying what is fundamentally true.” With regard to Islam and violence, Mohler says that Obama denies that the problem is theological, which Mohler says it is.

A crucial hinge” in the conversation is an article published by Daniel Burke, religious editor of CNN, entitled “Religion’s Week from Hell” in which he describes the last seven days of horrific violence where all of it except the murder of three Muslims in North Carolina, apparently by an atheist.” (Not “apparently;” and it was over a parking space).

Another important article is by Robert Cohen in the NY Times entitled “Is Islam and the West at war?” He begins the article relating the murders in Denmark at a Seminar on “on ‘Art, Blasphemy and Freedom of Expression’ and a Danish Jew guarding a synagogue were shot dead in Copenhagen, Helle Thorning-Schmidt, the prime minister of Denmark, uttered a familiar trope:” She said: “We are not in the middle of a battle between Islam and the West. It’s not a battle between Muslims and non-Muslims. It’s a battle between values based on the freedom of the individual and a dark ideology.”

Cohen, relates Mohler, then writes,

This statement — with its echoes of President Obama’s vague references to ‘violent extremists’ uncoupled from the fundamentalist Islam to which said throat-cutting extremists pledge allegiance — scarcely stands up to scrutiny. It is empty talk…“To call this movement, whose most potent recent manifestation is the Islamic State, a ‘dark ideology’ is like calling Nazism a reaction to German humiliation in World War I: true but wholly inadequate. There is little point in Western politicians rehearsing lines about there being no battle between Islam and the West, when in all the above-mentioned countries tens of millions of Muslims, with much carnage as evidence, believe the contrary.”

President Obama says that 99.9% of Muslims are not at war in the West. Mohler says that the truth is although “the vast majority of Muslims are not at war with the West, millions of others are.”

Mohler then discusses an article that “eclipses” the one in the NY Times. The very long article (about 30 pages) “What ISIS really wants” by Graeme Wood appeared in the Atlantic monthly, March 2015:

Graeme Wood explains that this wilful blindness on the part of the West to the theological challenge we face explains why President Obama just a matter of something like a year and a half ago, would refer to the Islamic state as not Islamic…[ISIS] It is growing, not receding, and it is inherently theological – abundantly so – and that’s the point Graeme Wood is now seeking to make…it’s a theology that will not accept peace as a matter of policy. It is a theology that understands world conquest, at least in terms of the dominance of Islam, to be absolutely necessary. It is a worldview, a theological worldview, that make it, says Wood, ‘…constitutionally incapable of certain types of change, even if that change might ensure its survival;” And most hauntingly, remember those words, …it considers itself a harbinger of—and headline player in—the imminent end of the world.’”

[A]s Graeme Wood makes clear, continues Mohler, one of the reasons why the Islamic State is winning the argument is because they have a more ancient and enduring tradition in Islam to claim as their own and as their justification, at the expense – not to mention of the West, not to mention of more mainstream leaders in the Arab world – but even at the expense of al Qaeda.”

The reality, says Graeme Wood, is that the Islamic State is Islamic. Very Islamic. Yes, it has attracted psychopaths and adventure seekers, drawn largely from the disaffected populations of the Middle East and Europe. But the religion preached by its most ardent followers derives from coherent and even learned interpretations of Islam. Virtually every major decision and law promulgated by the Islamic State adheres to what it calls, in its press and pronouncements, and on its billboards, license plates, stationery, and coins, “the Prophetic methodology,” which means following the prophecy and example of Muhammad, in punctilious detail. Muslims can reject the Islamic State; nearly all do. But pretending that it isn’t actually a religious, millenarian group, with theology that must be understood to be combated, has already led the United States to underestimate it and back foolish schemes to counter it.”

Mohler continues:

According to [Professor] Haykel, he [Graeme Wood] writes the ranks of the Islamic State are deeply infused with religious vigor. Koranic quotations are ubiquitous. “Even the foot soldiers spout this stuff constantly,” Haykel said. “They mug for their cameras and repeat their basic doctrines in formulaic fashion, and they do it all the time.” He regards the claim that the Islamic State has distorted the texts of Islam as preposterous, sustainable only through wilful ignorance.”

There’s the rub: ISIS is not distorting the Koran/Qur’an and the Hadiths, and it would be, says Haykel, “preposterous” to say this was so. The question is: “Does Mohler believe that ISIS reflects authentic Islam. Does he have anything to say on the matter besides quoting Haykel? No. The next and final words on the topic are:

Now at this point I simply have to say that in terms of the article we’re only nine pages in of an almost 30 page article. That tells you just how important this long-form journalism really is. And just how historically important I believe this article will turn out to be.”

The impression I get in his other podcast discussions of Islam (“The Briefing”) is that for Mohler, the “radical Islam” of ISIS is a distortion of genuine Islam, which contrasts with Haykel – whom Mohler quotes approvingly – who says that ISIS is following the precepts of the Qur’an to the letter. ISIS is indeed very faithful to the words of Allah. Read the Qur’an and Hadiths!

What is the different between “radical Islam,” “Islam” and “Muslims.” All Islamists are Muslims, but not all Muslims are Islamists. Why is  this so? Because an Islamist is one who follows the letter and the spirit of the Qur’an to a Q, while many Muslims don’t. Who are the Islamists par excellence? ISIS, Al Qaeda and their ilk? The ignorant or pusillanimous refer to the latter as “radical.” In one sense, they are right – the etymological sense. “Radical” derives from the Latin root “root” (radix). Islamists dig deep into the roots of Islam, while many Muslims play in the branches, In sum, “Islam” in its unmutilated form is radical. That explains its mutilations, which embrace two kinds: verbal – chopping and changing Qur’anic revelations (for example, abrogation – see Abrogadabra in the Qur’an) and chopping off heads. Most of those in the branches either encourage the radicals – or remain mum, for fear of attacking the root from which they sprout and the certain repercussions coming down upon their heads.

Al Mohler seems either not to get it, or not want to say it (himself) – ever. Here is a hadith binding on all Muslims: “The Holy Prophet (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: ‘Seventy-two (of the 73 sects of the Muslim nation) will be in the fire, and only one will be in Paradise; it is the Jama’ah (i.e. Ahle Sunnah Wa Jamaah).” (Abi Dawud, Ad-Darimi, Ahmad).” Sects who cavort like ISIS believe they will end up as the Jama’ah, numero 73, and so does every other sect doing delish things like chopping off heads. (Jama’ah has several meanings. One meaning is “majority”).

I return to the beginning of Mohler’s podcast and of this article: Mohler says, “the West (intellectual and political elite) is denying what is fundamentally true.” With regard to Islam and violence, Mohler says that Obama denies that the problem is theological, which Mohler says it is. Mohler is, of course right. Mohler might have said elsewhere that “radical Islam” theology is in reality true Islam theology, but I would be surprised and stand corrected if he said that. Would it be correct to say that only “blindness and wilful ignorance” (Mohler, referring to the worldview of “modern secular materialism”) will cause someone to see it – namely, that the two theologies are in fact one – otherwise?

The burning of the Qur’an: Pastor Terry Jones and the Imam

I discuss the video of Pastor Terry Jones vs Muslim Cleric Imam Al-Qazwini regarding Jones’ burning of the Qur’an.The person who posted it on YouTube added the caption. Interesting clip, A must see for every person out there that has misconceptions about Islam.” The caption tells us, at the most, that the person who posted it likes Islam.

Here are few excepts (verbatim and summations) of the conversation. The context of the video was a TV discussion involving the presenter, the Imam and a Christian Pastor, Ed Rowe versus Terry Jones. My comments and clarifications within the conversation are in italics and square brackets.

Terry jones says that Muslims who come to the US willing to obey the US constitution are welcome, but if they come with the agenda of wanting to impose Sharia, they are not welcome. The Imam asks Jones what he means by Sharia. Jones says his knowledge of Sharia is “somewhat limited” but what he said about obeying the USA Constitution applies to any movement. He says the punishment in Sharia is brutal, “it involves stoning and other cruel forms of punishment. And one of the aspects of that [USA] constitution is freedom of speech.”

Presenter: I don’t think the Imam will disagree with you.

Imam: “No, definitely [that is, he doesn’t disagree]. So why all this commotion? People in this country have a right to burn the Qur’an if they want to. But for you [to burn the Qur’an] who call yourself a pastor.”

[That is the Imam’s first lie. That’ll be the day that Muslims believe or that Islam teachers that anyone has the right in any country to burn the Qur’an.

Jesus was a great messenger who asked his followers to embrace others., to love his enemies.”

[We shall have to see where the misconception (deception?) lies. Where did the Imam read that Jesus commands to love your enemies. Not in the Islamic literature, but in the Bible. So does the Imam, as Mohammad did, accept the Bible of his day as the uncorrupted Word of God?“5:46 And in their footsteps We sent Jesus the son of Mary, confirming the Law that had come before him: We sent him the Gospel: therein was guidance and light, and confirmation of the Law that had come before him: a guidance and an admonition to those who fear Allah.” And: 57:27 We sent after them Jesus the son of Mary, and bestowed on him the Gospel; and We ordained in the hearts of those who followed him Compassion and Mercy …”

These verses prove that Mohammad (Allah) did not believe the Bible was corrupt].

As a pastor I don’t think you have grounds to burn a divine book that respects and glorifies Jesus for whom you speak in his name.

[Jesus would never regard a book as divine that says he never did what he came to earth to do – to die for sinners. What does the Qur’an say about the death of Jesus? From surah 4:157. “That they said (in boast), “We killed Christ Jesus the son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah.;- but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but so it was made to appear to them, and those who differ therein are full of doubts, with no (certain) knowledge, but only conjecture to follow, for of a surety they killed him not:-

158. Nay, Allah raised him up unto Himself; and Allah is Exalted in Power, Wise.”

According to Jesus, Allah is at best certainly not exalted in power and wise. The Bible – “None of the rulers of this age understood it, for if they had, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory” 1 Corinthians 2:8]

If you read the Qur’an that you burned three weeks ago, you will find out that almost on every page there is a verse in the Qur’an glorifying Jesus. “So, continues the Imam, what I think what you did three weeks ago was an insult against Jesus. Against your own faith because if you really believe in Jesus the the Qur’an glorifies Jesus. So when you burn the Qur’an you’re insulting Christianity.”

[The Imam said above that Jesus is on almost on every page of the Qur’an. Let’s see. In the Qur’an, there are 51 verses (ayahs) out of a total of 6236 about Jesus – .8%, in 12 of its 114 chapters (surahs). In 6 of these, Jesus is referred to as the messenger (of Allah). As far as the Qur’an glorifying Jesus, never. It is Allah whom the Qur’an glorifies, pointing out that he (Jesus) is no more than a messenger: 4:171 O People of the Book! Commit no excesses in your religion: Nor say of Allah aught but the truth. Christ Jesus the son of Mary was (no more than) a messenger of Allah, and His Word, which He bestowed on Mary, and a spirit proceeding from Him: so believe in Allah and His messengers. Say not “Trinity”: desist: it will be better for you: for Allah is one Allah: Glory be to Him: (far exalted is He) above having a son. To Him belong all things in the heavens and on earth. See also 5:116 “He (Jesus) will say: ‘Glory to thee’.”

Jesus is given honor and considered righteous, but never glorified. He is, like Mohammed, a messenger, who is the final and most important of all the messengers].

5:75 Christ the son of Mary was no more than a messenger; many were the messengers that passed away before him. His mother was a woman of truth. They had both to eat their (daily) food.

19:19 He said: “Nay, I am only a messenger from thy Lord, (to announce) to thee the gift of a holy son.”

And this one, where the Holy Spirit in the New Testament is replaced by “Achmad.”

61:6 And remember, Jesus, the son of Mary, said: “O Children of Israel! I am the messenger of Allah (sent) to you, confirming the Law (which came) before me, and giving Glad Tidings of a Messenger to come after me, whose name shall be Achmad.” But when he came to them with Clear Signs, they said, “this is evident sorcery!”

[Achmad in 61:6! Muslims switch the biblical Greek word parakletos (one who comes alongside – the Holy Spirit for Christians with paraklutos (the praised one) because there is a reference to Achmad in surah 61:6. See more on this topic here].

I think, continues the Imam, Pastor Jones needs to get educated on the words he is talking about. He is well misinformed about things he has been talking about.”

[Jones is not misinformed but insufficiently informed. That was his great weakness. He couldn’t provide even one verse – there are many dozens – from the Qur’an. Terry, next time, take the miniscule trouble to provide at least one source from the Qur’an or Hadiths to back up your beef].

Jones: “I am warning against Sharia and Jihad.

Presenter: In so doing aren’t you labeling everyone who is in Islam?

[All TV presenters in the popular media, for example, CNN, Sky News, are sycophantic Islamophiles, not necessarily by nature, but by orders from upstairs. One thing we can congratulate them for is their crass ignorance of Islam].

Jones: “I have made that very very clear. There are probably millions of Muslims who are peaceful but there is a radical element that cannot be denied.. are burned a book and seven thousand miles away people were killed. Something is definitely wrong.”

[Why then does Jones burn the Qur’an if the issue is the “radical element.” Jones is mince meat!].

Presenter: “Don’t you think you have blood on your hands? Because of what you did here in the USA 12 innocent people were killed.”

Jones: “Oh absolutely not. What I do believe is that those people in those governments should be held accountable.”

Presenter – Reverend Roe [ who is involved in bringing Muslims and Christians closer together] let me bring you in here because there are zealots in every faith. He [Jones] calls himself a Christian so do you. You read the same Bible. Why the difference in attitude.

Reverend Roe: I’m not here to defend violence anywhere on the part of the Christian Taliban (directed at Jones, of course) – or anybody else. I’m here to say that what happened with burning the Qur’an didn’t just burn the Qur’an it burned the sermon on the mount, Matthew 5. They burned every statement that Jesus made about loving enemies… People might think that Christianity supports what you did. I’m here to say that there is nothing in the Gospel that supports the burning of the Qur’an. And if you knew what was going to happen – the violence – the blood that was spilled.. The violence is your violence. You burnt a whole lot more than the Qur’an. You burnt every statement from Jesus Christ about non-violence. The peaceful Jesus that I know would never have done what you did.

[Reverend, aren’t you going a tad over the top? Also, the Imam does not agree with you. Didn’t you hear him say “People in this country have a right to burn the Qur’an if they want to,” but Pastors shouldn’t do it? Let me also, like the Reverend, refer to Matthew: Muslims do not be afraid that Allah will be cross with you if you do not go on the rampage whenever Islam is attacked. You don’t have to go out and kill bodies. In any case, people whose bodies you kill should not be afraid: Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell” (Matthew 12:28). This is the Jesus Islam rejects].

[I now want to make what I consider the most important point in this saga. Terry Jones says that he is doing what the Bible directs him to do. The Bible is not clear on this. In contrast, the Qur’an says Christians are blasphemers destined for hell fire; they need to convert to Islam, or  be subdued and pay a large tax. And Jews are monkeys and pigs. Do we see any Christians killing Muslims who follow these teachings?  There are hate speech laws in the US. I ask Ed Rowe, wouldn’t he consider what the Qur’an says about Jews  and Christians more serious than a Christian, who does not represent most devout Christians, burning  a book that says, at best, such vile, insulting things to Christians? Furthermore, instead of fawning over the Imam, why don’t you tick him off?

Presenter (Deceived parrot): “Would Jesus have done what you did?

Jones: “Yes, I think he definitely would. In acts 19:19 “books worth great sums of money” were burned. In the Old Testament the godly kings burned the high places. But I think we are missing the point… We’re not here to discuss the burning o the Koran. We are here to send a very clear message to the radical elements in Islam.”

Presenter to Imam: “There are many Americans who fear Islam.

Imam: “They fear Islam because of people like Pastor Terry jones who are working on their paranoia, who are making a monster out of Islam. I would respectfully ask Terry Jones to go and read he Qur’an instead of burning the Qur’an and he will be amazed and surprised on the commonalities that exist between Islam and Christianity. The problem is that Pastor Jones has not read the Qur’an. He has no knowledge of the Qur’an Therefore, he is trying to make a monster out of the Qur’an. By that he is terrifying Americans against Islam and telling them Islam is the danger. Now, no one is denying that there are radicals in Islam. There are radicals in christianity.”

[Pastor Jones, it was indeed silly of you to come to such a debate with zilch knowledge of the Qur’an].

Islam, continues the Imam, is “the Divine faith that has so much to offer to this world and humanity. The divine faith that speaks highly of Christianity and Judaism. “Someone who does not believe in Jesus cannot claim to be a Muslim. In order to be a true Muslim you have to embrace Jesus and his message. It seems that pastor jones does not get that.”

[The Imam is either ignorant (if so, how did he get his job?) or a liar. 1. The “divine” faith does not speak highly of Christianity and Judaism at all. For one, Jews are described on several occasions in the Qur’an as monkeys and pigs. Another, Christians under Islamic rule are subjugated, treated like outcasts, and have to pay a huge tax. Why do you think Egypt is 90% Muslim today. Most Christians couldn’t bear the hardship and converted to Islam when the Muslims hordes took over their country in the 7th century. The Qur’an rejects the fundamental doctrines of Christianity such as the Trinity, the incarnation, vicarious atonement through the shedding of Jesus’ blood].

What’s the difference between an Islamist and a Muslim?

Robert Spencer of JihadWatch writes:

“DHS [Department of Homeland Securiy] Secretary Jeh Johnson just said that to call the Islamic State Islamic would be “dignifying them as occupying some form of Islam.” And so here we see the cognitive dissonance clearly: the Islamic State is impatient with Syrians whom they claim know nothing about Islam, and non-Muslim authorities in the West (and Muslim authorities as well) insist that it is actually the jihadis of the Islamic State who know nothing about Islam. At very least, Western intelligence agents and policymakers should study the Islamic State’s understanding of Islam, so as to comprehend these jihadis’ motives and goals, and be able to counter them more effectively. But they will not do that, because that would lead them into study of…Islam. (Robert Spencer, “Islamic State jihadis complain that “the Syrians do not know anything of the Islamic religion”).

Most, if not all, Western leaders sing the same silly tune: ISIS has nothing to do with “peaceful” Islam. What is the touchy truth: 

All Islamists are Muslims, but not all Muslims are Islamists. Why is  this so? Because an Islamist is one who follows the letter and the spirit of the Qur’an to a Q, while many Muslims don’t. Who are the Islamists par excellence? ISIS, Al Qaeda and their ilk? The ignorant or pussilanimous refer to the latter as “radical.” In one sense, they are right – the etymological sense. “Radical” derives from the Latin root “root” (radix). Islamists go deep down into the roots of Islam, while many Muslims sit high in the branches, In sum, “Islam” in its unmutilated form is radical. That explains its mutilations, which embrace two kinds: verbal – chopping and changing Qur’anic revelations (for example, abrogation) and chopping off heads.

Most of those in the branches either encourage the radicals – or remain mum, for fear of attacking the root from which they spring and the certain repercussions coming down upon their heads.

Violence in Judaism, Christianity and Islam

Are Judaism and Christianity as violent as Islam?

Here is Raymond Ibrahim’s reply:

“There is far more violence in the Bible than in the Qur’an; the idea that Islam imposed itself by the sword is a Western fiction, fabricated during the time of the Crusades when, in fact, it was Western Christians who were fighting brutal holy wars against Islam.” (Andrea Bistrich, “Discovering the common grounds of world religions,” interview with Karen Armstrong, Share International, Sept. 2007, pp. 19-22).

So announces former nun and self-professed “freelance monotheist,” Karen Armstrong. This quote sums up the single most influential argument currently serving to deflect the accusation that Islam is inherently violent and intolerant: All monotheistic religions, proponents of such an argument say, and not just Islam, have their fair share of violent and intolerant scriptures, as well as bloody histories. Thus, whenever Islam’s sacred scriptures—the Qur’an first, followed by the reports on the words and deeds of Muhammad (the Hadith)—are highlighted as demonstrative of the religion’s innate bellicosity, the immediate rejoinder is that other scriptures, specifically those of Judeo-Christianity, are as riddled with violent passages.

Read on here. http://www.raymondibrahim.com/islam/are-judaism-and-christianity-as-violent-as-islam/

Abrogadabra in the Qur’an: abrogation and/or substituting something for something better

Islam teaches that the Qur’an, being the Word of God, is eternal. The problem is that the Word of God cannot be separate from Allah because that would mean that it, like Allah, is also a divine eternal being, which would mean the existence of more than one divine eternal being. Only God is eternal, therefore, not only Allah would be a God, so would Allah’s Word be a God. One way out of the “duonundrum” might be to say that God and his Word are One. This, alas would militate against the Islamic idea that God cannot consists of parts. So this won’t do.

Another problem with the Islamic idea of the eternality of the Qur’an is its doctrine of “abrogation,” which it says is not abrogation. What else can this verse mean?

Surah 2:106

None of Our revelations do We abrogate or cause to be forgotten, but We substitute something better or similar: Knowest thou not that Allah Hath power over all things? (“We” is the “royal we”).

The problem is that if the Qur’an has been residing in the bosom of the all-knowing, all-perfect, all-good Allah from all eternity, why would it contain a plethora of substitutions of something better, which implies change, becoming, time-bound. I am reminded of the open theist whose God is not totally free but merely reacts to human decisions, and arranges his thoughts and actions accordingly.

Examples from the Qur’an: 1. Allah decrees that Muslims are not allowed more than four wives. Later the revelation comes down of something better for Mohammed who ends up with 9 wives or more. 2. Mohammed desires his adopted son-in-law’s wife, but feels this desire wrong. Then something better comes down and says something better – not in the vein of the Joseph-Mary incident – when Allah reveals to Mohammed that it’s ok to take this woman to wife.

There are many more “something betters” in the Qur’an, which I won’t mention here.

Excerpt from “The Quran’s Doctrine of Abrogation” by Abdullah Al Araby http://www.islamreview.com/articles/quransdoctrineprint.htm

In an attempt to polish Islam’s image, Muslim activists usually quote verses from the Quran that were written in the early days of the Islamic movement while Mohammed lived in Mecca. Those passages make Islam appear loving and harmless because they call for love, peace and patience. Such is a deception. The activists fail to tell gullible people that such verses, though still in the Quran, were nullified, abrogated, rendered void by later passages that incite killing, decapitations, maiming, terrorism and religious intolerance. The latter verses were penned while Mohammed’s headquarters was based in Medina.

When speaking with people of Christianized/Western societies, Muslim activists deliberately hide a major Islamic doctrine called “al-Nasikh wal-Mansoukh” (the Abrogator and the Abrogated). This simply means that in situations wherein verses contradict one another, the early verses are overridden by the latter verses. The chronological timing in which a verse was written determines its authority to establish policies within Islam. Non-Muslims cannot afford to be ignorant about the full implications of the Abrogator and the Abrogated Doctrine (al-Nasikh wal-Mansoukh). When Islamic spokesmen say that Islam is a religion of peace and that the Quran does not support such things as human rights infractions, gender bias and terrorism, they are lying. This means that the Western politicians and liberal journalists, who continually spout that Islam is a noble religion of peace, are in reality propagating a deception that they have been deceived into parroting.

Abrogation – ok then “substitute something better” – only makes sense in open theism. Any other attempt to explain it is nothing more than abrogadabra.

Related Article: “The problem of abrogation in the Qur’an.” http://answering-islam.org/Authors/Farooq_Ibrahim/abrogation.htm

Islamic State: “Allah has revealed Islam to be the religion of the sword, and the evidence for this is…profuse.”

Islamic State: “Allah has revealed Islam to be the religion of the sword, and the evidence for this is…profuse.”

Cognitive dissonance: Bush, Obama, David Cameron and a host of others insist that Islam is a religion of peace. The Islamic State, which they claim has nothing to do with Islam, quotes the Qur’an copiously to establish that Islam is actually a religion of the sword that calls for permanent war against Infidels. Would it be permissible to examine the Qur’an to try to determine which claim is more accurate? Or would that be “Islamophobic”?

http://www.jihadwatch.org/2015/02/islamic-state-allah-has-revealed-islam-to-be-the-religion-of-the-sword-and-the-evidence-for-this-is-profuse#comments

is Islam an ideology or a religion?

 

One of the marked and remarked, but certainly unremarkable, human traits is ensuring where your bread is buttered. In modern politics, nowhere is this truth more evident than in “Islamophobia” wherein so much dread is muttered.

Geert Wilders, a Dutch politician, and very brave, is, in most of what he says on the issue, right on the money; for example, his address to the Danish Parliament. He makes the important distinction between Muslims and Islam, which “muticulturalists” do not make. “Multiculturalists” distinguish between “radical” Islam and “true” Islam, where the latter is a religion of peace; it’s just those radical nasties. In other words, they say there’s nothing to phobe but Islamophobia itself. (See James White: What more does every Christian need to know about Islam and the Qur’an).

If we return to the root of the word “radical” we find it means “root.” So, etymologically speaking, “radical” Islam is the root of Islam. There is no escaping the truth that Islam is rooted in violence. Muslims and Islamophiles say that the violence in the Qur’an is only against those who fight Muslims. Balderdash. If you prove your case by quoting the Qur’an, that is considered Islamophobia.

Geert Wilders calls Islam an ideology, not a religion. By “ideology,” I think he means a man-made system with political goals; and by “religion” he means beliefs and practice based on divine revelation. The point,  though, is that Muslims assert that their beliefs and practice are indeed based on divine revelation, Therefore for them,  Islam is indeed a religion.

Sam Shamoun, a critic of Islam, explains why Islam is not merely a political system – an “ideology.”

“I hope my intention is not to be unnecessarily offensive to Muslims but at the same time I don’t want to sugar coat what Islam actually teaches, because here is a man who claims to be a prophet of the same God as Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, who comes to complete and perfect a religion practised and proclaimed by all the Biblical prophets including our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ. A man who says that Jesus, the Son of God, did not come in the flesh. A man who says that Jesus did not die on the cross and rose again victorious as proof that he died in our place in order to do for us that which we could not do for ourselves. A man who says that if you say that Jesus is the divine Son of God you are an enemy to Allah, and he (Mohammed) will fight you. So that when we deal with Muhammad, we’re dealing with eternal matters, not simply a political game. We’re not talking about politics: “Well if Muhammad is wrong then the only consequences you suffer are temporal, earthly.” We are talking about a man who is commanding people to stake their eternal destinies on his claims.” (Why did Muhammad wear women’s clothing? Minute 20 ff).

Among so-called “radical” Muslim groups, there probably are members who don’t follow the Qur’an, who join these groups solely to gratify their lust for rape, pillage and blood – the extreme expression of the radical corruption of human nature. But many of these “radical” members are devout followers of the one they call Allah and the one they call his prophet. Here’s the rub: the so-called divinely inspired Islamic literature gives believers the right and privilege to rape, maim, kill and destroy those who do not believe in Allah and his prophet. It is Islamophiles who are the true Islamophobes. Being pussylanimous scaredy cats, they call anyone who quotes the violent truths in the Qur’an Islamophobes. They want a peaceful life, no upsetting of apple carts. To criticise Islam is to invite disruption, and the violent defence – taught in the Qur’an and Hadiths – of the honour of Allah and his messenger. “Better dread than dead.”

James White: What more does every Christian need to know about Islam and the Qur’an?

James R. White is not Jewish, alas. But I don’t mind. What matters is he’s a Calvinist AND worships Jesus, like I do, that is not to say we worship the same way. He, like me, is a five-point Calvinist, so a consistent one: no fudging with total depravity (radical corruption) and particular (“limited” atonement). I learn much from his books, debates and “Dividing line” podcast.

What I want to talk about here is White’s critique of Islam, mostly very sound. He wrote a good book “What every Christian needs to know about Islam.” What I have noticed is that there is one topic on Islam he never debates or writes about, which I suggest every Christian, indeed everybody, needs to know about. I’m thinking of the violence in Islam; not merely among Muslims, but in the Islamic literature itself – the Qur’an and the Hadiths.

When White does talk about violence in Islam, it is in the vein of most Western politicians where the distinction is made between “radical” Islam and the “true” Islam, which they say isis (oops) a religion of peace; it’s just those radical nasties. In other words, they say there’s nothing to phobe but Islamophobia itself.

Here is White on his Dividing Line podcast of August 7, 1914. He is lambasting Theodore Shoebat’s “Islamophobia”:

[I italicise salient parts. My comments appear in italics after each paragraph]

I happen to know that there is a cottage industry of real Islamophobia. I would describe Islamophobia as if you were someone who was trying to make every one afraid of every Muslim in the world, that would be true Islamophobia. If you cannot recognise that in a group of a billion people are all different kinds of people with different perspectives, standings and beliefs, if you try to say that all of Islam is the same and fail to recognise this, I ‘ve no more respect for that. It’s very easy to do by the way. If you want to divide people, that is how you do it. It’s us against them. Problem is, man I really get angry when people do that to me. I really get angry when I am held accountable for the Crusades, for the pornocracy of the papacy in Rome, for the sales of indulgences, all that kind of stuff … Homosexual marriage, abortion. From the world’s perspective they’re all Christians because you can just throw them into one pile right? Well no, you can’t.

About the Crusades:
“President Obama, writes Ravi Zacharias, basically lectured Christians not to get on a moral high horse in their castigation of the ISIS atrocities by reminding them that the Crusades and slavery were also justified in the name of Christ. Citing the Crusades, he used the single most inflammatory word he could have with which to feed the insatiable rage of the extremists. That is exactly what they want to hear to feed their lunacy.” (Ravi Zacharias – A presidential blunder: My response to Obama’s address at the National Prayer Breakfast).

Christianity should not be coupled with the violence of the Crusades. In passing, the crusadfers were not invading lands that belonged to Muslims but lands that Muslims had – with Muhammad and later his “companions, at the vanguard – taken by the sword.

White continues:

Does it take effort and time and energy to differentiate between those Muslim groups. You tell the difference even by just looking at the people I’ve debated among the Muslims. Can’t you discern real distinctions between them not only in their positions but on their mind set and their perspectives. If you can’t, I can for sure. And so I would say that islamophobia is when you try to paint all Muslims with the same broad brush which would mean Christophobia when you do that to Christians. I am concerned that I see some serious islamophobia on the Shoebat website because I don’t see any recognition that there are Muslims other than the radical bloodthirsty animals that we see going after the Azidi right now and killing Christians and fellow Muslims right left and centre. These are obviously demonic people. Then when you have that reality and make it an us versus them get your sword, kill everybody that looks like them attitude and mindset, that is when things really go wrong.”

There is indeed no need to be afraid of every Muslim in the world, because, as White says, in every society there are violent types and peaceful types. I would add that as long as most Muslims either remain ignorant or not care much about what the Qur’an (and Hadiths) teach, most Muslims won’t want to chop off the heads of Kafirs (unbelievers) and apostates. What does White mean by “Islam in “his if you try to say that all of Islam is the same and fail to recognise this, I ‘ve no more respect for that. It’s very easy to do by the way?” If he means the practise of Islam, then there is no doubt about that, but if by Islam he means its texts, then this is incorrect. The Qur’an and the Hadiths are chock full of knocking off the blocks and such like of unbelievers and apostates. The latter are those who do not do everything that Allah and Muhammad have commanded. Where do I end quoting the bucketfuls of verses on this matter! White says about Isis, “these are obviously demonic people.” But Isis is faithful to the Qur’an and Hadiths. The way White is talking you’d think he was unaware of the violence in the Qur’an.

The issue is not the (mal)practise of a religion but religious texts. Muslims do point to the violence in the Hebrew scriptures where God commands the Israelites to kill entire communities. What, though, I am arguing here is that Muslims and ignorant or frightened or politically correct Westerners say that Islam (by that they mean non-violent Muslims) is a religion of peace. Yes, peace when they are in the minority. But wait until they – the coming generation or two – are 30-40% of the European population, they’ll follow the example of their prophet by forcing Kafirs to submit. As more than one person has said, Islam is the fastest growing forced religion in the world. Europe’s turn is round the corner.

1 hour 8 minutes into his podcast, White expresses his disgust at Theodore Shoebat posting a video of an Arabaic teacher in a Muslim country talking about the definition of kafir. Here is White: “At one point he (the teacher) says to them, ‘So what do we do with kafirs ( those who have a differing religious belief)? We slaughter them.’ “And that, says White , is what the Inquisition did. The same mindset. It’s frightening. It should be frightening to you. Frightening to me.”

The Inquisition, not the Gospel, is demonic. What is really frightening is that the reason why that teacher tells his pupils to slay the unbeliever is because he is faithful to his demons, to his Qur’an.

Surah 9:5 When the sacred months are over slay the idolaters wherever you find them. Arrest them, besiege them, and lie in ambush everywhere for them. If they repent and take to prayer and render the alms levy, allow them to go their way. God is forgiving and merciful. (For background and context see THE VERSE OF THE SWORD: SURA 9:5 AND JIHAD).

Is Islam sort of devilish? Six reasons

 

When we say someone is Jewish, we don’t mean someone who wishes to be a Jew, nor do we mean someone who is a sort of Jew, as in deadish – sort of dead, reddish – sort of red; a bit dead, a bit red.

The English suffix ish has the meanin “sort of.” In Hebrew, though, ish is the noun “man.” What I want to talk about here is not whether humans are born dead in sin, that is, radically corrupt, deadish in sin, that is, partially corrupt (as in Roman Catholicism and much of Protestantism) or pure (as in Judaism, Islam and Atheism), but about whether it is right for one religion to call another religion devilish, whether in the sense of being totally inspired by the devil, or in the sense of being partially inspired, that is “sort of” inspired by the devil – yes devilish, but….

Here is Colin Chapman’s “yes-but” in his “Going Soft on Islam?” Vox Evangelica 19 (1989): 7-32.

Among the many visiting speakers who preached in the mid-week service during my days at the old London Bible College in Marylebone Road was a missionary who at that time was working in North Africa. I don’t remember his name, but I do remember his message, because it made a profound impact on me. His text was John 8 and he spoke about the challenge of Muslim evangelism. The main thrust of his message was that we cannot begin to have an effective ministry with Muslims until and unless we appreciate what we are dealing with in Islam….Just as Jesus was prepared to say to the Jewish leaders ‘You are of your father the Devil’ (John 8:44), so we today must recognize

that Islam is a religion inspired by the Devil, and therefore must think of our ministry among Muslims in terms of a confrontation with him. I never forgot that address, and it continued to challenge me during my years in Egypt.”

He asks: Is Islam inspired by the Devil? His response:

If I have to give a short and immediate answer to this question, it would consist of two words: ‘Yes… but’. In case I am laying myself open to misunderstanding, let me say right from the start that I do believe without hesitation that ‘the god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers…’ (2 Cor 4:4). I do believe that ‘our struggle is… against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms’ (Eph 6:12). 1 do also believe that ‘Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light’ (2 Cor 11:14). I am convinced that all these verses are thoroughly relevant to our thinking about other faiths and ideologies. I want to suggest, however, that there is a real danger in coming too easily and too quickly to the conclusion that Islam is a religion inspired by the Devil.”

Chapman gives six reasons for this conclusion.

[My contribution appear sin italics after each of his reasons].

Here are my six reasons for being hesitant about using these categories too freely in our teaching about Islam.”

Reason 1

Why single out Islam for special mention? What about Communism? What about the

godless Humanism of the West today? What about some of the demonic forces at work in parts of the Christian world, like Northern Ireland? When some Christians speak as if Islam is The Enemy No 1 in the world today, I wonder if they are not getting things out of proportion.”

What has this response got to do with the price of pork? Chapman is misdirecting. The topic is Islam, not other movements. First deal with Islam, then we can compare, if there’s time or the necessity.

Reason 2

An overemphasis on the role of Satan in Islam can easily prevent us as Christians from facing up to the terrible record of the Christian church in its relations with Muhammad and his followers. Attributing everything in Islam to demonic forces allows us, so to speak, to ‘pass the buck’, and fail to recognize the responsibility of the Christian church in all that has happened. The very existence of Islam can be seen as a judgement on the Christian church, and the record of the church over centuries in its relations with Islam should leave us with a sense of shame… [R]esorting too quickly to the explanation that Islam is inspired by the Devil may mean that we are letting ourselves off the hook too lightly, and that we never recognize the responsibility of the Christian church for all that has happened in the past.”

Misdirection again. Hey you hypercritical, hypocritical Christians, YOU also are a devilish bunch.

Reason 3

If we teach that all other religions are inspired by the Devil, some Christians jump to the conclusion that people of other faiths must therefore by definition be possessed by evil powers. If you think this sounds exaggerated, I must explain that I have more than once encountered this way of thinking in our students at Trinity, and I find it most in those who have been deeply influenced by the Charismatic Movement and the Signs and Wonders Movement. It is obvious that there are occult practices in some forms of Folk Islam, and I have no difficulty whatever in believing in demon possession. But I don’t believe it is either true or helpful to suggest that every Muslim must be treated as a case of demonic possession.”

It does not necessarily follow that “if we teach that all other religions [besides Christianity] are inspired by the Devil” that “some Christians jump to the conclusion that people of other faiths must therefore by definition be possessed by evil powers.” The reason why we (Christians] should teach that other religions are inspired by the devil is because the New Testament says that all religions that reject the incarnation of the Son of God are from Satan, the deceiver.

John 1

1 “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it…1And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

1 John 4:2

This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God.”

2 John 1:7

[M]any deceivers, who do not acknowledge Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh, have gone out into the world. Any such person is the deceiver and the antichrist.”

Revelation 12:9

And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world—he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him.”

Reason 4

We are probably influenced more than we realize by stereotypes of Islam which we have inherited from the past. It wasn’t for purely biblical and theological reasons that our

forefathers in the Eastern churches and in Europe thought of Islam in these terms. There were many other cultural, political and psychological factors which were at work not so far below the surface.”

Chapman never quotes the Qur’an or the Hadiths. I listened to his six-part lecture series. Not one quote from any Islamic source, but only about what Muslims say about their texts. There is so many distortions of the Bible in the Qur’an. Gospelygook. The Qur’an says that Jesus did not die. Without the incarnation, propitiatory death and resurrection, there is no Gospel. Did Allah deceive the Christians? If so. He is a bigger deceiver than Satan. And to top it, Allah’s directive to follow HIS Injil (Gospel).

Surah 4:157. That they said (in boast)

“We killed Christ Jesus the son of Mary the Apostle of Allah”;

but they killed him not nor crucified him

but so it was made to appear to them

and those who differ therein are full of doubts

with no (certain) knowledge but only conjecture to follow

for of a surety they killed him not.

4:158. Nay Allah raised him up unto Himself; …

The Qur’an distorts the Trinity

Surah 5:73-75

They have certainly disbelieved who say, ” Allah is the third of three.” And there is no god except one God. And if they do not desist from what they are saying, there will surely afflict the disbelievers among them a painful punishment.

Surah 5:116  And behold! God will say: “O Jesus the son of Mary! Didst thou say unto men, worship me and my mother as gods in derogation of God’?” He will say: “Glory to Thee! never could I say what I had no right (to say). Had I said such a thing, thou wouldst indeed have known it. Thou knowest what is in my heart, I know not what is in Thine. For Thou knowest in full all that is hidden.

The Qur’an is strewn with dozens of mutilations of the Bible.

Reason 5

When I find Christians interpreting the contemporary revival of Islam, especially in the

Middle East, simply in terms of the work of Satan, my reaction is to plead that this can lead to a terrible oversimplification of complex issues. This revival is to some extent a response to centuries of European colonialism, and we cannot understand what has been happening in countries like Iran if we do not even attempt to appreciate the many cultural, political and economic factors that have been involved. I believe we need to be aware that simple explanations expressed in purely spiritual terms can easily have the effect of preventing us from getting to grips with the complexities of history and politics.”

Any religion that is based on what it considers to be divine revelation embodied in a text, will base its thoughts and actions on these texts. Islam is no exception. Much in the Qur’an and the Hadiths conflict wit the Bible. For this reason, Christians worth their biblical salt believe that the more faithful a Muslim is to his Islamic sources, the more he is inspired by the devil.

You hear much today from Western politicians that pure Islam is not radical, that it is not violent. Chapman at the beginning of his lecture 5 on Islam says some Muslims are for violence, some are against. He doesn’t say quote the Qur’an. In an earlier lecture he says some Muslims believe that the later actions about peace abrogate the earlier bits about violence. A Muslim who believes that doesn’t know much about his Qur’an. In fact, the peaceful bits are abrogated by the violent bits. For example,

Surah 2:256: “There is no compulsion in religion” is abrogated by Surah 9:73, 123:

O Prophet! Strive against the disbelievers and the hypocrites! Be harsh with them…. (9:73)

O ye who believe! Fight those of the disbelievers who are near to you, and let them find harshness in you…. (9:123).

Radical” Islam takes the Islamic texts seriously – therefore, they’re violent towards all non-Muslims as well as those they believe are merely cultural, social, political Muslims. Maajid Nawaz is, though he might disagree, one of the latter. Nawaz is the liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Hampstead and Kilburn and co-founder and chairman of Quilliam, a counter-extremism think tank.

We Muslims, says Nawaz, must admit there are challenging Koranic passages that require reinterpretation today. Let us use existing tools of exegesis, such as specificity, restriction, abrogation and metaphor. Vacuous literalism as an interpretive method must be abandoned. It is bankrupt. Only by rejecting vacuous literalism are we able to condemn, in principle, ISIS-style slavery, beheading, lashing, amputation and other medieval practices forever (all of which are in the Qur’an). This is a struggle within Islam. Reformers either win, and get religion-neutral politics, or lose, and get ISIL-style theocracy.” (Source).

Isis takes the Qur’an “literally,” that is, “literaturely.” It studies the words as one would study any language, and accepts what the words (letters – Latin litera) mean, not what they, contrary to Maajid Nawaz, want them to mean. “Moderate” Muslims believe that Isis is an illiterate, uneducated bunch. One thing I will say in their favour, if they were in my language class assuming they were English speakers – for example that man (”ish” in Hebrew) alleged to be Brit-Ish), who loves circumcising (“brit” in Hebrew) the heads offf journalists for Allah – they would pass my reading course. If only they could could graduate to a course in post-modernism and post-structuralism, they could then metaphorise and morphorise (morph – change meaning) the words of Allah, shimmering on every page of the Qur’an.

Surah 6:114 – [Say], “Then is it other than Allah I should seek as judge while it is He who has revealed to you the Book explained in detail?” And those to whom We [previously] gave the Scripture know that it is sent down from your Lord in truth, so never be among the doubters.

Surah 57:9 – It is He who sends down upon His Servant [Muhammad] verses of clear evidence that He may bring you out from darknesses into the light. And indeed, Allah is to you Kind and Merciful.

Sahih International

While Isis wallows in a sea of depravity, in which they, like all of us, were born, Maajid Nawaz prefers to muddy the waters, clearly out of his out of his comfort zone, and thus out of his depth.

Reason 6

Some Christians use the language of the demonic to explain things that are culturally

strange and foreign to them. I remember some Christian friends saying to me before I first went to Cairo, that when they spent some days there they felt an atmosphere of evil in the city. I often used to think and worry about what they had said, because I came to love Cairo with all its crowds and dust and smells and broken pavements. Was it that I was spiritually blind to what was there in the atmosphere, or was it that my friends used the demonic to explain those aspects of the culture with which they couldn’t cope?”

Christians can be a silly lot.

Perhaps, says Chapman, the answer lies somewhere in between. But my basic fear about explaining Islam in terms of the Satanic is that it can become an easy way out. It absolves us from the need to face up to those areas where judgement may need to begin with the household of God (1 Pet 4:17), and saves us from the hard work of coming to terms with all those pastoral, psychological, political and cultural factors which come into the equation. Is Islam inspired by the Devil? I hope it is clear from what I have said that my ‘Buts’ do not turn my original ‘Yes’ into a ‘No!’ They are intended not to make it ‘die the death of a thousand qualifications’, but rather to qualify the simple ‘Yes’ and to encourage us to get beyond our favourite neat, simplistic answers.”

Indeed, “explaining Islam in terms of the Satanic… can become an easy way out [and can, if we let it] absolve us from the need to face up to those areas where judgement may need to begin with the household of God.”

Yep, it’s called radical corruption, the state in which all without exception or born. What is important is that Christians should learn more about Islam, if only for the reason that if they are going to blab about Islam, they’ll know what they’re blabbing about. And when they read the Qur’an they don’t need to worry about becoming bewitched and enslaved by its power, because they should learn that “our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms” (Ephesians 6:12). These forces occupy the earthly realm as well.

“Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world. You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world” (1 John 4:1-4).

I wonder whether Colin Chapman and Maajid Nawaz ever shared a cuppa together. Wish I could be a fly in the wings, if not in the cup. (The fly in the tea-cup: A lesson from the Hadith…”).

Related: David Wood – How ISIS Radicalizes Young Muslims

The logic of Islamorphobia

Law of contradiction: A cannot be not-A

Morph (transitive verb): To change the form or character of

With regard to modern violence among Muslims, Muslims and ignorant-and-scared non-Muslims (the vast majority of Westerners) say that only a minority of Muslims are to blame, that true Islam is about peace.

In the video “The myth of the tiny minority” David Wood is in conversation with a regular Muslim caller, Manna. Bill Warner, a Muslim scholar, is an invited guest.

[My clarifications in square brackets]

Mannu

I’m surprised that you are defending Isis as being Islamic when it is criminal misguided sect that both the majority of Sunnis and Shias believe are breaking multiple, multiple points of Qur’an and the Sunnah.” Mannu gives the “top three of them.” 1. “Killing the people who have surrendered without them (the people) fighting them (Isis). 2. Killing Sunni clerics who did not approve of their brand of Jihad. 3. They have stolen from the Muslim Ummah when they sacked all the banks in Mosul and other areas. These are all major, major areas of breaking Islamic Sunnah. And including what they had done in the past with the villagers they had kicked out in Syria because the fact that they were retaliating against people that they had even sided with the opposition with other groups that they were in conflict with [I’m not clear what he means, but it seems that he is saying that Isis kicked the villagers out in spit of the fact they were fighting on the side opposed to Assad].”

“If you put that together with what Muhammad did when he was victorious and came back to Makka [Mecca], and all his enemies he had, he said “remain in your houses, you’re safe, and the majority of people who remained in their houses there was no fighting. This group [Isis] has broken many many rules in Islam.”

[Ummah is the Muslim community. Sunnah is the way of life prescribed as normative for Muslims on the basis of the teachings and practices of the Islamic prophet Muhammad and interpretations of the Qur’an].

David Wood

“Mannu began by saying how can you say that Isis is Islamic when so many Muslims condemn them? What have we been saying this entire program? It’s not what this or that Muslim says; it is whether the Qur’an and the Hadiths agree [with them]. You’re not allowed to kill people who have surrendered? That is absolute nonsense. Well you can say that Muhammad didn’t kill the people who surrendered at Mecca, but when the Qurayzah [a Jewish tribe] surrendered to them, what did he do? He hauled them into the market place and chopped their heads off; big piles of heads. So, according to Mannu, Muhammad was not Islamic because he killed people who had surrendered….Yes, in Mecca he let many people off the hook until Surah 9:5 came down [the final statute on how to deal with unbelievers]. You cannot lay down what you said about Muhammad] as a blanket rule.”

[Surah 9:5 When the sacred months are over slay the idolaters wherever you find them. Arrest them, besiege them, and lie in ambush everywhere for them. If they repent and take to prayer and render the alms levy, allow them to go their way. God is forgiving and merciful. See The verse of the sword: Surah 9:5 and Jihad).

Bill Warner

Mannu has brought up a very interesting principle about Islam but he did this in an oblique way. I maintain that there are only two principles in Islam that are of real importance. The one is submission, the other is dualism. Both the Qur’an and Muhammad’s Sunnah are filled with dualistic statements. Yes it is true that in Mecca the prisoners weren’t killed, but at other times he did this. The important point is this: In almost very issue of `Islam there are two right answers: yes you can kill prisoners, and – isn’t there a Qur’anic verse that you should even take prisoners until there is a great slaughter in the land [give VERSE]. But the point is, and this is the trickiest thing about Islam, it always has two truths that always contradict each other. Now in our logic, in Western logic, if you have two statements that contradict each other, at least one of them must be wrong. But in Islamic logic, no: killing prisoners is Sunnah and not killing prisoners is Sunnah. This is what makes Islam so contradictory; its nature is contradiction.

David Wood

“It seems you can go to the Muslim sources and pull out anything.”

Might I add, “And pull the wool over stupid liberal eyes.”

Related:

The Islamic dilemma regarding the Qur’an and the Bible.

Bill Warner – “Why are we afraid? A fourteen-hundred-year old secret.”

Understanding jihad: business is aboomin’

You won’t be able to check out this video at the following link because Youtube has classified it as “offensive.” It is indeed offensive, thanks to the Qur’an. You can watch it at the second link. David Wood shows up the Western ignorance, deceit and fear of Islam. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-SoXs-0_rHY&feature=youtube_gdata_player

Watch here:

 

Jihad; and sex in the now and beyond for devout Muslims in the know

Most Muslims are either ignorant or disobey – as with most adherents of religions in general – their scriptures. The following only applies to the devout and in-the-know Muslim.

Sex Jihad by Raymond Ibrahim on June 23, 2013 in From The Arab World, Islam

Investigative Project on Terrorism

Excerpts

1. News emerged a few weeks ago in Arabic media that yet another fatwa had called on practicing Muslim women to travel to Syria and offer their sexual services to the jihadis fighting to overthrow the secularist Assad government and install Islamic law. Reports attribute the fatwa to Saudi sheikh Muhammad al-’Arifi, who, along with other Muslim clerics earlier permitted jihadis to rape Syrian women.

2. Indeed, Islam’s prophet Muhammad maintained that death during jihad not only blots out all sins—including sexual ones—but it actually gratifies them:

The martyr is special to Allah. He is forgiven [of all sins] from the first drop of blood [that he sheds]. He sees his throne in paradise, where he will be adorned in ornaments of faith. He will wed the ‘Aynhour [a.k.a. “voluptuous women”] and will not know the torments of the grave, and safeguards against the greater terror [hell]. … And he will copulate with 72 ‘Aynhour (see The Al Qaeda Reader, p. 143).

This goes to one of the many seeming contradictions in Islam: Muslim women must chastely be covered head-to-toe—yet, in the service of jihad, they are allowed to prostitute themselves. Lying is forbidden—but permissible to empower Islam. Intentionally killing women and children is forbidden—but permissible during the jihad. Suicide is forbidden—but permissible during the jihad—when it is called “martyrdom.”

Islamophobia: Why Cair?

In this video, Jonathan Matusitz, an associate professor at the University of Central Florida, tells Islam as it is. He can back up all he says from the accepted Islamic literature. Here is some froth spewed out by the pro-Sharia lobby in the US, who hate the video:

CAIR – Council of American-Islam Relations.

“CAIR-FL Seeks Review of UCF Courses Taught by Anti-Islam Prof. Professor at publicly-funded institution works with anti-Muslim hate group, says Germany will be ‘Islamic republic’ by 2050.

(TAMPA, FL, 6/17/13) – The Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-FL), along with other community organizations, announced today that it has called on the University of Central Florida (UCF) to review the accuracy and objectivity of information offered to students in courses taught by Dr. Jonathon Matusitz.

CAIR-FL says Matusitz, an associate professor in the UCF Nicholson School of Communication, is “membership director” for the anti-Muslim hate group ACT! for America and bizarrely claims Germany will “become an Islamic republic by 2050.”

Now, consider the recent horror “honor” killings in Paris. If you are faithful to the Qu’ran, and not merely a “cultural” Muslim. you will (unlike the devout Jew or Christian) do what those brothers did in Paris – kill those who attack your religion. (Most Christians and Jews are also cultural adherents of their faiths, and consequently ignorant, not giving a toss about the meat of “their” scriptures).

There is a deep meaning and a superficial meaning of “culture.”

Deep meaning – Culture is a conceptual framework: a way of representing one’s world through thinking. Each culture is a system of meanings shared by its members. What one represents in one’s mind becomes embodied in a mode of communication that expresses and addresses the self and the world, involving both verbal and nonverbal behaviour. For the devout Muslim, the main cultural influence is the Qur’an and the Hadiths.

Superficial meaning – “Cultural Muslims, for example, are religiously unobservant, secular or irreligious individuals who still identify with the Muslim culture due to family background, personal experiences, or the social and cultural environment in which they grew up.” (Wikipedia http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cultural_Muslim).

(See my Culture and Conceptual Frameworks).

You might say to me,”Hate speech.” I shall certainly say to you, “You’re either an ignorant klutz, want to be left alone, or are scared of Muslims – or a deceiver.

Relate: Vengeance and the cartoons about Mohammed.

 

Shabir Ally versus James White: God is not a man

A year ago, Shabir Ally and James White debated the topic Did the original Disciples of Jesus consider him God?

One of Ally’s arguments was that Numbers 23:19 says that “God is not a man.” He repeated this snippet on several occasions. White rebutted that when God took on a human nature in the person of the Son, He did not cease to be God and so even though he took on human nature, he remains God. Ally, like all Muslims, regards the divine nature of God in three divine persons like something being both a square and a circle.

White also said, in passing, that Numbers 23:19 says “God is not a man that he should lie.” He could have spent a little more time on the connection between “God is not a man” and the bit Ally omitted – “that he should lie.”

The complete verse runs:

God is not a man, that he should lie,
or a son of man, that he should change his mind.
Has he said, and will he not do it?
Or has he spoken, and will he not fulfill it?

Jews argue like Ally. On several occasions, I’ve responded to my Jewish kith that the conjunction “that,” which connects 1. “God is not man,” to 2. “he should lie” means that whereas man is (by nature) a liar, God is not. Numbers 23;19 has nothing to do with the nature of God’s being, namely, whether he has a divine or a human nature, or both. Therefore, it’s illegitimate to chop the verse into two chunks and present them as two separate arguments. It’s a bit like slicing up Raphael – the Ninja turtle – and ending up with Picasso.

“[God’s] mind and counsel is one; one and the same, ‘yesterday, to-day, and for ever.’ Therefore the apostle speaks of God, that there is no shadow of change or turning in him, James i. 17. He is not a man that he should lie, neither the son of man that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it?’ Numb. xxiii. 19. And shall he decree, and not execute it? Shall he purpose, and not perform it? ‘I am the Lord, I change not;’ that is his name, Mal. iii. 6. ‘The counsel of the Lord standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations,’ Psal. xxxiii. 1]. Men change their mind oftener than their garments. Poor vain man, even in his best estate, is changeableness, and vicissitude itself, altogether vanity! And this ariseth, partly from the imperfection of his understanding, and his ignorance, because he does not understand what may fall out. There are many things secret and hidden, which if he discovered, he would not be of that judgment; and many things may fall out which may give ground of another resolution: and partly from the weakness and perverseness of his will, that cannot be constant in any good thing, and is not so closely united to it, as that no fear or terror can separate from it. But there is no such imperfection in him, neither ignorance nor weakness. ‘All things are naked’ before him; all their natures, their circumstances, all events, all emergencies, known to him are they, and ‘all his works from the beginning,’ as perfectly as in the end. And therefore he may come to a fixed resolution from all eternity; and being resolved, he can see no reason of change, because there can nothing appear after, which he did not perfectly discover from the beginning. Therefore, whenever ye read in the Scripture of the Lord’s repenting – as Gen. vi. 7. Jer. xviii. 8. – ye should remember that the Lord speaks in our terms, and, like nurses with their children, uses our own dialect, to point out to us our great ignorance of his majesty, that cannot conceive more honourably of him, nor more distinctly of ourselves. When he changeth all things about him, he is not changed, for all these changes were at once in his mind; but when he changeth his outward dispensations, he is said to repent of what he is doing, because we use not to change our manner of dealing, without some conceived grief, or repentance and change of mind.”

(Hugh Binning – The Common Principles of the Christian Religion – Lecture 14).

 

 

 

ISIS, Politics and Islam

In  his “Is ISIS a faith-based terrorist group?” (Colombia Journalism Review), Christopher Massie argues:

The real problem [of ISIS] is that nobody can precisely calculate the aggregation of factors that have produced the modern phenomenon of Islamic extremism. And so the claims of people who cite religious causes cannot be dismissed any more than the claims of people who cite political ones. Hussain is right to caution that “Western society doesn’t have a great familiarity with Muslim culture,” and Nomani is also right to say that “we should cover Islam like we cover a city council meeting,” bearing in mind “political interests” and “ideological interests.”

David Wood, in contrast, argues that the main inspiration behind ISIS is Islam in the Qu’ran and the Hadiths.

Qu’ran

“Jihadists fighting for ISIS (the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria) claim that they are following the commands of Allah and Muhammad. Yet Westernized Muslims, politicians, and the media claim that ISIS is violating the principles of Islam. Who’s right? In the following video, David Wood presents the top ten Quran verses for understanding the beliefs and actions of ISIS.”

Hadiths

What would you say to someone who was adamant that Allah was the only true God? Narrow is the gate

An atheist friend challenged me with this question: “What would you say to someone who was adamant that Allah was the one and only god?” (His small “g”). As far as I  am aware, my friend knows very little about Islam. Here was my answer, which did not try and prove why Allah (described in the Qu’ran, I assume) was, at best, an inadequate portrayal of God, but focused on why only the Bible provides the correct revelation of God.

Every Christian, when asked, is admonished to give an answer to those who ask for the hope that is within him: “But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect” (1 Peter 3:15).

In Matthew 7:13-14 Jesus says, “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.” “I am the way the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father but by me.” (John 14:6). “Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life.” (John. 5:24).

The Apostle John writes: “We proclaim to you what we have seen and heard, so that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son, Jesus Christ” (1 John 1:3). John had seen the crucified Christ, but a thing most wonderful, also the risen Christ.

Why is it very possible you will reject the Jesus of the Bible? In Matthew 7:13-14 we read of Jesus saying, “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it.

Roman 3 says “11 there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God (of the Bible) 12 All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, Not even one; 13 Their throats are open graves; their tongues practice deceit. The poison of vipers is on their lips. 14  Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.

Unless Jesus has mercy on you and grants you repentance and faith in him, and by so doing bring you back from the spiritual death you deserve, you will remain in your sins. “No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws them, and I will raise them up at the last day” (John 6:44). The consequence of your rejection: “He who believes on Him is not condemned, but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only-begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than the Light, because their deeds were evil.” (John 3:18-19).” “… in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God and who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of His power, ….” (2Th 1:8-9).

What religions are inherently evil? Those that reject substitutionary atonement

The following is an excerpt of a review by Kendal B. Hunter from Ravi Zacharias’ Light in the Shadow of Jihad: The Struggle for Truth.

“In Chapter Three, Dr. Zacharias discusses the essential nature of Islam, whether it is good or bad. … I think that we make sweeping generalizations against Islam, since the key to understanding the two Islams is how one translated “jihad.” Dr. Zacharias makes the case that Islam is not inherently evil, but that the fundamentalists have hijacked it. He spends some time discussing the blasting cap book of radical Islam, “The Missing Religious Precept,” which focused on the negative, violent definition of “jihad.”

I haven’t read Zacharias’ book, but if he did indeed say that Islam is not inherently evil, here is the reason why the New Testament maintains that all non-Christian religions are inherently evil: they all fall down at religion’s highest point – the cross. I quote from Steve Lawson’s lecture The kind of preaching God blesses. at the Knox 500 Conference, Perth, Scotland, 11 August, 2014.

“Paul, “I’m determined to know nothing among you but Jesus Christ crucified.” The highest apex, the pinnacle the summit of Paul’s preaching was again and again to scale the heights of the person and work of Jesus Christ. Paul preached the full council of God, did he not? Paul preached the truth,the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. He preached all the areas of systematic theology, … Christology, pneumatology (Holy Spirit), eschatology, anthropology, harmatology (Si), soteriology (salvation), ecclesiology. Paul preached it all, yet here he says, ‘I am determined to nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified.’ What do you say if every area of systematic theology is rooted and grounded in one way or another in the person and work of Jesus Christ, and that all of the lines of his theology intersect at that highest point that sets forth the glory of Jesus Christ who has come into this world to lay down his life as a ransom for many. He preached Christ but not just Christ,the teacher, not just christ the example, and not just Christ the wise instructor.”

“But Christ the sin-bearing substitutionary saviour of sinners by whose death propitiated the righteous anger of God for sinners so that therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For Christ up on the cross reconciled holy God and sinful man by bringing them together through the blood of his cross.”

Judaism rejects the idea of Jesus’ substitutionary/vicarious penal sacrifice. Islam bolts out of history and says that Jesus wasn’t even crucified.

During the last few decades, many Christians are abandoning this crucial doctrine of substitutionary sacrifice, so vivid in Isaiah 53: “He was crushed for our iniquities.” A pox on their houses.

Vengeance and the cartoons about Mohammed: None can change the words of Allah, except Allah, which he does

OneDaring Jew

In Islam and the Book: The heart of the matter, I presented a discussion with a Muslim on the inspiration of the Quran and the Bible. The Quran states that the Hebrew and Christians scriptures (the “Book”) are divine revelation but they have both been corrupted from time immemorial and thus in Mohammed’s time no Jew or Christian – no matter how faithful to the original scriptures – had a copy of the original scriptures. The closest any Jew or Christian came to the “Book” sent down by God was, argued the Muslim, the few snippets they carried in their hearts.

I present here a specific example we discussed of the clash between the two religions on this matter: the Islamic violence unleashed on the world occasioned by the Danish cartoon of Mohammed.

(My part is in normal characters; his in italics).

– Do you agree with the violence that…

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Documentaries in understanding ISIS and Al Nusra (AL QAEDA)

A close up of the jihad in Syria.

The Domain for Truth

It is unfortunate that Al Qaeda affiliates in Syria and Iraq has achieved great strides pushing forth an imperalistic Islam upon other Muslims and Christians.  Its also unfortunate that many in the West don’t understand much of these two organizations, Al Nusra and Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL or better known as ISIS).  Apparently these two organizations aren’t getting along.

Here are two documentaries from earlier this year that gives a bit of perspective of  Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.

The first is an incredible documentary by Vice who embedded with Al Nusra.

The second is the perspective of some who have quit the Free Syria Army and their encounter with ISIS.

It is frightening.  We need to be praying.

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