Muslim scholars tell Islamic State: You don’t understand Islam

“More than 120 Muslim scholars from around the world joined an open letter to the ‘fighters and followers’ of the Islamic State, denouncing them as un-Islamic by using the most Islamic of terms.” RNS

3162 reads

There are 16 Comments

Bert Perry's picture

I hope that someone listens, but in light of the long-time Muslim tradition of capturing slaves from neighboring nations to serve in their harems--the men brutally castrated--suffice it to say they have an uphill battle convincing these guys that they are not Muslim.  They need Christ, and if they will not have Christ, they probably need a good sized chunk of metal to impact their head or heart.  This is a clear Romans 13 case where human government needs to punish the wicked.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

This would be comical if it weren't so deadly serious. ISIS is doing exactly what Mohamud and his followers did all the way until the fall of the Ottoman Empire after WWI. For these liberal, modern Muslim scholars to make this claim is no different than having the corrupt mainline "Christian" denominations denounce conservative Christians as unChristian because we continue to reject homosexuality. ISIS is the true manifestation of Islam.

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

Ron Bean's picture

I had a brief but informative discussion with two Muslims, one Shia and one Sunni. They explained their differences and both denounced ISIS and violence. I asked if they desired a world ruled by Islam and they said, "Yes. The same way you would like to see a world ruled by Christianity." When they both spoke against using violence to accomplish their ends, I brought up Islam's history then they brought up the Crusades and things pretty much fell apart.

"Some things are of that nature as to make one's fancy chuckle, while his heart doth ache." John Bunyan

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

Ron,

The difference, at least one of them, is Jesus didn't lead disciples in any crusades, but Mohamud led the original Muslims in religious conquest right up until the day he died.

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

Bert Perry's picture

On a business trip to Malaysia, they had a Qu'ran in the hotel room, or rather an English translation, and I quickly noted that some of the Suras have unmistakably warlike intentions, and unlike the Bible, those passages are addressed to all Muslims, not just, say, Israel as far as Amalek was concerned or some such thing.  

Now there are clear ambiguities in the Qu'ran, as well as places where it appears to contradict itself, but I really don't see how you get from the Qu'ran to a society that tolerates others.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Bert Perry's picture

Jim wrote:

Is there a Muslim - majority country where Christians are not persecuted?

Turkey is perhaps the most moderate of the Muslim - majority countries and there has been violence against Christians there

There is a fairly radical Muslim party in Malaysia, but for the most part, is pretty peaceful that way.  Part of the deal is that they know that western companies will leave if non-Muslims are mistreated, not to mention business with Singapore.  It would plunge the whole country into an economic abyss.  

What this means, however, is that in practice, Muslims run the government while the Chinese and Indian minorities run business, which is a constant source of resentment, and hence the law does protect Islam.  If you lead a Muslim to Christ, the government will need to be persuaded to recognize his new religion, and you can be put in jail for your part in his conversion.  There are also extensive set-asides for Malay (read Muslim) contractors and such, much like our own Affirmative Action set-asides.  

About 20 years back, I believe as well that a large portion of wealth held by the minorities was taken and given to the Malay majority.   The irony was that by 2003, when I visited, a new study had come out that noted that all of that money was.....

.....yup, right back in the hands of the Chinese and Indian businessmen/etc.. from whom it had been taken.  Object lesson for those who support "reparations", I think.

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

GregH's picture

A few comments about this.

1) Study after study shows that Muslims overwhelmingly are not violent and the trend is away from violence as they get more modern and liberal.

2) It seems a bit inconsistent to refer to the war passages in the Qu'ran as proof that the religion is violent when the Bible has way more than its share of extreme violence including killing tens of thousands of women and children. I do understand the idea that the commands in the Bible to commit violence stopped in the OT while the Qu'ran's commands are ongoing but to be fair, that argument understandably rings hollow from the outside of Christianity.

So, as bad as all the Muslim violence is in parts of the world, I just don't think it fair to paint with too broad of a brush. I would hate to be judged on the basis of the Crusaders and any other number of "Christians" through history.

Andrew K's picture

I live in Indonesia and have Muslims among my wife's family. And yes, although every religion has its nutters, there is something different about Islam. Something oppressive and violent that has plagued it from the very beginning.

I think much of it can be explained in the following way: both Christianity and Islam are "evangelistic" religions. They are not content, as are many other religions, to simply contain themselves to a particular ethnicity or group of ethnicities.

The main difference appears to be in the fact that, while Christ takes Peter's sword and passes it to Caesar (severing his kingdom from state until his return), Muhammad will not and indeed cannot release his.
 

GregH's picture

Jim wrote:

Very close to the truth

http://inktrekker.wordpress.com/2014/09/20/the-fundamentalists/

It is? People get their head cut off because they leave Islam?

Yes, I know that there are hangings and beheadings in the Middle East similar that seem reminiscent of OT stonings for the same kinds of offenses. But in civilized countries, that simply does not happen. 

Andrew K's picture

GregH wrote:

 

Jim wrote:

 

Very close to the truth

http://inktrekker.wordpress.com/2014/09/20/the-fundamentalists/

 

 

It is? People get their head cut off because they leave Islam?

Yes, I know that there are hangings and beheadings in the Middle East similar that seem reminiscent of OT stonings for the same kinds of offenses. But in civilized countries, that simply does not happen. 

What "civilized countries" do you mean?

I live in one of the most tolerant Muslim-majority nations on earth. It's more tolerant than Turkey or Malaysia. It's not even officially Muslim at all. Yet infidels like the "heretical" Ahmadis get brutalized and murdered regularly.

Unless you mean countries with a Muslim minority. But that's a very, very different thing.

http://www.indonesiamedia.com/2011/02/23/intolerant-indonesia-muslim-har...

Bert Perry's picture

I can't help but notice how the Christian fundamentalist in Jim's cartoon resembles Wally from Dilbert.  Somehow it fits with hyperfundamentalism in my mind.  :^)

And regarding Andrew's comments, first of all, thank you, Andrew, for the pointer to Indonesia.  I had not contemplated that one.  What it brings to mind for me is that at some point, while the world sees the destruction of Amalek and current jihad in the same way, as GregH notes, the distinction--a command to a specific group in the past to annihilate a nation for rebellion against God is not equivalent to a present notion that all unbelievers must be killed without mercy--is probably one we need to start talking about.  Probably only a minority will get it, but we may be helping that minority to get to Heaven, no?

Aspiring to be a stick in the mud.

Chip Van Emmerik's picture

Excellent article today following the beheading yesterday in Oklahoma. 

Every religion has people who do repellent things in the name of God, but there are big differences in the degree of their offenses, their numbers, and how they're treated. Just to give you a couple of examples, the Westboro Baptist Church claims to be picketing funerals in the name of God. There have also been a handful of people who have killed abortion doctors because of their Christian beliefs. Is this the equivalent to what's going on with Islam? No, not even close. For one thing, these loons don't even represent 10,000th of a percent of Christians and for another, they're almost universally, harshly, publicly condemned by other Christians.

On the other hand, a significant number of Muslims support Sharia Law, forced conversions, slavery, rape, terrorism and religiously-inspired violence and murder. 

and

But, you may say, “Well, those are Muslims OVER THERE. Certainly, Muslims in Western countries wouldn’t hold those kind of radical beliefs.”

Don’t bet on that.

* A new, widely-covered poll shows that a full 16% of French people have positive attitudes toward ISIS. That includes 27% of French between the ages of 18-24

* In 2006, a poll for the Sunday Telegraph found that 40% of British Muslims wanted shariah law in the United Kingdom, and that 20% backed the 7/7 bombers.

* 19 percent of American Muslims as of 2011 said they were either favorable toward Al Qaeda or didn’t know.

Wherever there are Muslims in large numbers, there are usually going to be a significant number of them who believe Islam requires them to be violent, backward savages. Some of them may act on it while others just provide moral support, but they’re definitely going to be present. That’s not a statement of opinion; it’s a statement of fact backed up by history, experience, and poll numbers.

and

It’s a mistake to believe that Muslims are all bad people. In fact, most of them, particularly in the United States, are decent, patriotic citizens chasing the American dream just like everyone else. When decent people act like you’d want and expect decent people to behave, you can’t just always write it off as Taqiya and assume that it’s a trick.

Ironically, that’s also part of the reason why we shouldn’t keep making the mistake of referring to Islam as a “religion of peace.”

When we blanket over the fact that there are significant differences of opinion within Islam, it keeps us from being specific enough about the problem.

Why is it that my voice always seems to be loudest when I am saying the dumbest things?

Andrew Comings's picture

Ron Bean wrote:

I had a brief but informative discussion with two Muslims, one Shia and one Sunni. They explained their differences and both denounced ISIS and violence. I asked if they desired a world ruled by Islam and they said, "Yes. The same way you would like to see a world ruled by Christianity." When they both spoke against using violence to accomplish their ends, I brought up Islam's history then they brought up the Crusades and things pretty much fell apart.

May I recommend Rodney Stark's research into the Crusades. The argument need not fall apart there...

Missionary in Brazil, author of "The Astonishing Adventures of Missionary Max" Online at: http://www.comingstobrazil.com http://cadernoteologico.wordpress.com