Very often I am presented with two claims.
Claim #1: The Qur’an copied from the Bible
Claim #2: The Qur’an is a manual for violence.
Those who make these claims do not seem to understand that the only possible conclusion in which both these claims can be true is if the Qur’an’s “violent” verses were copied from the Bible. To help those who hate us understand this point, I often ask the question:
Did the Qur’an Copy the Bible’s Violence?
Quite often the answer is no. Yet if the author of the Qur’an did create a religion for the purpose of warfare, genocide and terrorism, and if this author was copying from the Bible then it stands to reason that the Qur’an at the very least should contain some or most of the Bible’s most violent verses. Yet this is not the case. In fact, the most violent verse in the Bible is not matched by any verse of the Qur’an:
“However, in the cities of the nations the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance, do not leave alive anything that breathes.” – Deuteronomy 20:16 (NIV)
It would seem very strange that the author of the Qur’an (assuming it is not God as Christians claim) would create a religion for the purpose of warfare and copy from the Bible, while at the same time avoiding copying any verses which allow for violence. Surely, a religion created for the purpose of warfare which had the Bible available for source material would quote the most violent verse possible to support its ideology, yet we find no equal verse to Deuteronomy 20:16 in the Qur’an, or a verse more violent than it altogether.
On the other hand, the Qur’an echoes a teaching once given to a previous messenger (or messengers) to the Children of Israel:
“That is why We ordained for the Children of Israel that whoever takes a life—unless as a punishment for murder or mischief in the land—it will be as if they killed all of humanity; and whoever saves a life, it will be as if they saved all of humanity.” – Qur’an 5:32 (translation by Dr. Mustafa Khattab).
and Allah knows best.
In a stunning admission, William Lane Craig, in response to a question sent to him has acknowledged that he has no good answer to problematic Old Testament stories. He says:
When people ask me what unanswered questions I still have, I tell them, “I don’t know what to do with these Old Testament stories about Noah and the ark, the Tower of Babel, and so on.” So I find myself in the same boat as you, Jon. I don’t have any good answer how to resolve these problems. Yet these unanswered difficulties have not kept me from Christian faith or from abandoning Christian faith. Why not?
Well, a large part of the reason, as you note, is that the truth of what C. S. Lewis called “mere Christianity” doesn’t stand or fall with such questions.
In essence, he’s claiming that the problems with the stories in the Old Testament should not effect some beliefs of Christianity, so it’s okay not to have answers to those questions. The problem here is that they do affect core Christian beliefs, namely the reliability of scripture, the truthfulness of scripture, the preservation of scripture and even salvation as it pertains to Jesus’s ability to hold or share false beliefs:
Since I have good reason to believe in his deity, as explained above, I would sooner admit that Jesus could hold false beliefs (that ultimately don’t matter) rather than deny his divinity.
Apparently Jesus who is God, can have false beliefs that “shouldn’t matter”. In other words, it’s okay if “God as a human”, was fallible with respect to his own theology! Quite the disaster this is.
and God knows best!
Most Christians either completely gloss over or ignore the violence of the Old Testament. Such an apologetic is usually framed in the form of contextualising this violence as being for a specific period and people. We’re speaking about genocide, mass rape, mass torture, and horrendous acts of this nature. When compared with the New Testament, it is difficult to reconcile the two versions of God being presented to us. Our most read article also inspects some of these stories of the Old Testament.
The Old Testament contains the single most violent passage among any scripture in world history:
However, in the cities of the nations the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance, do not leave alive anything that breathes. – Deuteronomy 20:16.
Rivaled by none, the scale of sheer violence and bloodshed in the Bible is not only disturbing, it is also extremely difficult to accept that this is the God that Christians want us to build a relationship with. Concerning the apologetic that such violence is meant for a specific place and time, this betrays the Bible’s teachings itself. To begin with, the Bible teaches that all of God’s laws are eternal:
All your words are true; all your righteous laws are eternal. – Psalm 119:160.
Pursuant to this belief, of the 613 commandments given in the Old Testament, several of them are to act upon the rules of Deuteronomy Chapter 20. This includes Deuteronomy 20:16. Some Christians in reading this chapter may state that it mentions Israel a number of times so it must only refer to the Children of Israel, however this is incorrect as the Church today is considered to be partakers in Israel, as is explained by one popular Christian ministry (emphasis mines):
Finally, Galatians 3:29 says, “If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” In other words, in Christ, believers are counted righteous by faith in the same way that Abraham was (Galatians 3:6-8). If we are in Christ, then we are partakers of the blessing of Israel and all nations in the redemptive work of Christ. Believers become the spiritual descendants of Abraham. Believers do not become physical Jews, but they may enjoy the same type of blessings and privileges as the Jews.
and God knows best.
Horrifying news out of Australia yesterday. A Muslim woman was attacked by a male assailant for being Muslim in appearance. The woman was grabbed by the neck and hair, then repeatedly and violently slammed into the train’s carriage. He continued to scream and shout anti-Muslim and racial slurs at her while continuing to physically harm her. As the train approach the station, he threw her off of the train, severely hurting her. Read shocking and terrifying full news report here
Another video, also taken this week in midtown New York features a group of Muslim women being insulted, and violently screamed at by another male assailant. The language in the video is unsuitable for minors and those sensitive to abusive terms. Click here to see the Live Leak video. These attacks will continue to grow as more rhetoric against Muslims is published in the media. It is the duty of the males in the Muslim community to accompany the women of our Ummah, so that we may be able to the best of our legal ability escort and thereby protect them during these times.
The disturbing trend is that these attacks are carried out by males against females and almost never by males against males. I do not know what these aggressive sycophants are capable of and it is clear they will prey on the women in our communities, even if they are in large groups as seen in the Live Leak video above. These attacks are random and without provocation, where even in public areas our women can still be attacked. Safety in numbers does not guarantee that our mothers and sisters will be safe. So I encourage the males in our community to be a bit more aware and careful with our women and I hope that these instances do not escalate any further.
We must however, continue to observe this growing trend of attacks with close and pedantic attention. It would be helpful for Imams and Muslim Organizations in areas where hostility has historically been expressed or where tensions have recently escalated to consult with their local Police Departments and to have consultations with other community groups to foster goodwill and to raise some awareness of this growing issue. If you or someone you know has been attacked verbally or otherwise, please contact your local Police Department and inform them of the location and the threat you have experienced. Silence is not an option in these times and it is necessary for us to be vigilant in our affairs.
and Allaah knows best.
Religion is supposed to cross ethnic, cultural and socio-economic divides. Unfortunately, it has become quite too easy and quite too profitable for some religious individuals to misuse religious ideals to demonize those they disagree with. Below is a post by Dr. Michael Brown, a Christian scholar and missionary who many in the Christian community respect due to his knowledge about Judaism and his works in converting the Jewish peoples. To my displeasure, I saw an inflammatory post by Dr. Brown regarding Muslim beliefs and it is because of this I have decided to share my thoughts on his disrespectful and immature statements. While I understand that he supports the illegal State of Israel, and he is free to do so, and while I understand his ire with ISIS, I cannot allow him to demonize the entire Islamic community by defacing the message of the Qur’aan. Out of all people, he himself should know that it is irresponsible and intellectually dishonest to misrepresent what scripture teaches. Below, we can read the image he has been circulating quite proudly, one may note his watermark in the lower right corner of the image:
I produced the following image, which I encourage Muslims to share with their Christian and Right-Wing friends, including Dr. Michael Brown on his Facebook page.
and God knows best.
You won’t find this as an example of religious extremism on David Wood’s site or on Atlas Shrugs. I’d like to emphatically state that this cult is not representative of all Christians or of the Christian faith. What this video is an example of, is the end result of radical, violent, hateful figures who prey on those who don’t agree with their extremist rhetoric. Humans partake in religion, humans are violent, religious humans can be and will be violent – it’s human nature and they’ll justify their violence through whatever philosophy or ideology or religion that allows them to do so. What people like Sam Shamoun and David Wood are afraid to come forward and say is that Christians have been and can be violent too. It’s just under reported. They will celebrate and gladly announce how the Christian Church is growing in China, but they will never say that it as a result of violent, hateful Churches like these, producing cults!
Maybe someone can shoot David Wood or Pamela Geller an email and ask them why they don’t also highlight the growing trend of violent Chinese Christian cults?
and God knows best.
Not sure if he’s ever read the Old Testament, or he’s just trying to imply the Muslim God is weak because Muslims fight in God’s path, but Pastor Isang sure embarrassed himself and I took full advantage of it:
Missionaries, don’t you ever think before you post/ speak/ write?
and Allaah knows best.