Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Violence in Islam vs. Violence in Judaism and Christianity

Below is a snippet from an insightful article published a few days ago on JihadWatch which excellently explains the difference between violence in Islam and violence in Judaism/Christianity. Click the link for the whole article.

Why should Islam be the one religion always characterized as intrinsically violent, simply because its holy book and its history also contain violence? Why should non-Muslims always point to the Koran and ancient history as evidence of Islam’s violence while never looking to their own scriptures and history?

While such questions are popular, they reveal a great deal of confusion between history and theology, between the temporal actions of men and what are understood to be the immutable words of God. The fundamental error being that Judeo-Christian history—which is violent—is being conflated with Islamic theology—which commands violence. Of course all religions have had their fair share of violence and intolerance towards the “other.” Whether this violence is ordained by God or whether warlike man merely wished it thus is the all-important question.

Old Testament violence is an interesting case in point. Yahweh clearly ordered the Hebrews to annihilate the Canaanites and surrounding peoples. Such violence is therefore an expression of God’s will, for good or ill. Regardless, all the historic violence committed by the Hebrews and recorded in the Old Testament is just that—history. It happened; God commanded it. But it revolved around a specific time and place and was directed against a specific people. At no time did such violence go on to become standardized or codified into Jewish law (i.e. the Halakha).

This is where Islamic violence is unique. Though similar to the violence of the Old Testament—commanded by God and manifested in history—certain aspects of Islamic violence have become standardized in Islamic law (i.e., Sharia) and apply at all times. Thus while the violence found in the Koran is in fact historical, its ultimate significance is theological, or, more specifically, doctrinal.

14 comments:

Khayyam said...

Salams,

We dont have any prescriptive violence like the one allegedley prescribed by Jesus:

Luke 19:27 (King James Version)

27But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.

Nabeel Qureshi said...

Khayyam--

Excellent job demonstrating how Muslim apologists enjoy taking verses out of context. I could not have done it better myself.

Let me try my hand at it:
"Say unto men, 'Take me and my mother as gods, apart from God'"
- Quran 5:116

Khayyam said...

Nabeel,

perhaps you (with the help of your Holy Spirit) can provide the context of Luke 19:27? I havent heard a good explanation for this verse yet...

Oh and make sure that it is the Holy Spirit that you ask and not Satan, as we all now that satan can sometimes disguise himslef as the holy spirit:

2 Corinthians 11:14 (New International Version)
14And no wonder, for Satan himself masquerades as an angel of light.

Nabeel Qureshi said...

Khayyam--

Excellent job demonstrating how Muslims apologists enjoy replacing words in the text with words of their choice. I especially appreciate your substitution of the words "holy spirit" for "angel of light".

You're making this too easy, my friend. I'm busy right now, but I will get to your request soon if no one else does it for me.

Semper Paratus said...

Khayyam,

Oh sure, it is prescriptive for Christians alright. Don't let the fact that it is obviously eschatalogical get in the way of thinking otherwise. Also, ignore the fact that Jesus does not say here who the agents are that carry out His judgment. (Elsehwere He identifies them as angels.)

"So He said, A nobleman went to a distant country to receive a kingdom for himself, and then return. And he called ten of his slaves, and gave them ten minas and said to them, 'Do business with this until I come back.' But his citizens hated him and sent a delegation after him, saying, 'We do not want this man to reign over us.' When he returned, after receiving the kingdom, he ordered that these slaves, to whom he had given the money, be called to him so that he might know what business they had done....

As everyone can see, Khayyam is obviously right. Jesus is giving a standing command here, and He is giving it to Christians. He is telling Chrisitans to fight while He is away until God's word is uppermost and the religion is for God. Obviously He is not saying that at the end of history He will return with His servants and judge His enemies....anything but that.

Semper Paratus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Fernando said...

Khayyam: do you really thinke Lk 19:27 prescribes violence?

I juste can't believe in itt... its juste impossible to believe... are you being serious? Are you trying to probe another thing?

I'm not going to say anything else on Lk 19:27 until you can clariffy your positione...

About 2 Cor 11:14... where is it saide thate Satan can disguise himself as the Holy Spirit?

Whe Christians, on our part, don't habe, for instance, any tradition on our founder being inspired by Satan himself...

Hogan Elijah Hagbard said...

Muslims seem to have a problem to differentiate between present-future narrative and eschatology.

How are we to debate people who lack even the simple-basic understanding of the Bible.

DAN12345 said...

This is getting really silly dont the muslim's actually read the whole chapter or do they pick out sentances on purpose to try and gain a few bonus points for the few seconds their little games last.You see if somebody read "slay them before me" from Jesus's own mouth they would be shocked and maybe you can get them to come into islam,But when Jesus IS TELLING A STORY why do you write it as if it is jesus speaking to someone?why do you try to deceieve in order to gain? Khayyam please go and read the chapter and you can see a story is being told here BY JESUS,not orders or commands by Jesus.What shock's me about this is it happens so regularly and the muslims know what they are doing........trying to fool people

THE STUDENT said...

Khayyan is a joke, I really feel sorry for lots of muslims who distort the text of the Bible and take verses out of context.

LB said...

Jesus is illustrating there a link to Exodus 20 v3 which says "You shall have no other God's before me". Showing we should worship no other God's or things of this world appart from him.
I want to know what you aboutthe part in the Quran which speaks of being able to beat your wife if she doesn't obey "those on whose part you fear desertion, admonish them, and leave them alone in the sleeping-places and beat them" sura 4:34. Be very interesting to hear your response. Glory to the one true God Jesus Christ!

Sepher Shalom said...

Khayyam-->"We dont have any prescriptive violence like the one allegedley prescribed by Jesus:

Luke 19:27..."

Since this is such a common verse to be eisogetically abused by Muslims, I decided to post an Exegesis of Luke 19:27 on my blog that shows why your comment here is a very uninformed attempt.

I hope that after reading it, you will make an honest investigation into the meaning of this verse and then drop this line of argumentation.

Also, please note that if you actually read the link in Nabeel's post you would have seen a lucid argument that refutes your assertion that Muslims "dont have any prescriptive violence".

I suggest you interact with the evidence provided by JihadWatch and post here a point by point refutation if what you are saying is true. Until then the evidence demonstrating Muslims are called to violence stands.

Shalom in the name of Yeshua

-Sepher

Dk said...

Khayyam..

Even if YOU believe Luke 19:27 is a universal prescription for Christian violence, YOUR interpretation is IRRELEVANT. (not being rude).

You would have to show the early church and all churches at all times understood this passage the exact same way that you do.

Yeah it sucks doesn't it, you don't get to inteprete the Bible how you see fit, you have to show where the inquisitiors, crusaders and witch-killers used this to justify there terrorism.

Then you have to show these groups of people were giving there instructions in alignment with the church understanding of the Bible!

Khaayyam, now do us all a favour and find surah 9:123 "fight those closet to you and then those furthest away", and give us the LAWFUL intepretation of this verse.

Khaayam, what must an Islamic state do in terms of propogation and military expansion?

Zameel said...

See: http://allahisalmighty.blogspot.com/2009/10/violence-in-judaism-christianity-and.html