Sunday, August 1, 2010

Should Qur'ans be Burned at a Church Sponsored Event?

I walked into this "debate" on a Facebook friend's page. Evidently, CNN reported on Saturday that a church in Gainesvile, FL is promoting its "International Burn a Quran Day" scheduled for September 11, the ninth anniversary of the September 11, 2001 Islamic terrorist attacks. While the quality of the debate quickly devolved into me being called a liberal, a Muslim, a coward, and a fag. I don't care about the name calling. I have often found with fundamentalists of all types, that they will resort to this sort of name calling when their arguments begin to fail. However, I digress.

I stand behind my Biblical reasons for believing that this event is a bad idea for this church in particular and for Christians in general. My reasons I will lay out in detail, but first I want to make some things clear about my thoughts on Islam. First, Islam is a false religion that worships a demon. Second, Muhammad is a false prophet that not only married a six or seven year-old girl, but later consummated the marriage with her while she was still nine. Third, Islam is not the religion of peace that its American adherents would have us believe. Much of what I will be writing comes from Dr. Robert Morey's work Islamic Invasion.

My first point, Allah is a demon. If one is not worshiping the true God, then it logically follows that one is worshiping a demon. However, in the case of Islam, allah is the pre-Islamic Arabic moon god, al-ilah. There is sufficient archeological evidence to warrant the conclusion that Allah is this same moon god, al-ilah. It is interesting to point out that the Qur'an never defines who Allah is. Could it be that Muhammad did not need to explain a god that pre-Islamic Arabs were already familiar with?

Secondly, Is Muhammad a false prophet? If one simply looks at Deuteronomy 18, and applies the criteria logically, then the only logical result is that Muhammad is a false prophet. Let me demonstrate two logical arguments:

False god=false prophet
If a person speaks in the in the name of a false god, that person is a false prophet.
Muhammad spoke in the name of a false god, Allah.
Therefore, Muhammad was a false prophet.

False revelation=false prophet
If a person reveals something that did not come from God, then that person is a false prophet.
Muhammad delivered a message that did not come from God.
Therefore, Muhammad was a false prophet.

For a full discussion of these arguments, please see The Deuteronomy Deductions.

Muhammad's marriage and consummation to the little girl Aihsa, is confirmed in Islam's greatest Hadiths, Sahih al-Bukhari, 7:62:64.

Lastly, it is clear that Islam is not a religion of peace as can be found in the pages of the Qur'an itself:

Surah 9:111: "The believers...shall fight in the way of Allah and shall slay and be slain..."

Surah 9:5: "When the sacred forbidden months for fighting are past, fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them, take them captive, torture them, and lie in wait and ambush them using every stratagem of war."

Surah 5:33: "The punishment for those who wage war against Allah and His Prophet and perpetrate mischief [reject Islam or oppose its goals] in the land, is to murder them, to hang them, to mutilate them, or banish them. Such is their disgrace. They will not escape the fire, suffering constantly."

Surah 47:4: "So when you meet in battle those who disbelieve, then smite the necks until when you have overcome them, then make (them) prisoners, and afterwards either set them free as a favor or let them ransom (themselves) until the war terminates. That (shall be so); and if Allah had pleased He would certainly have exacted what is due from them, but that He may try some of you by means of others; and (as for) those who are slain in the way of Allah, He will by no means allow their deeds to perish."

Surah 21:44: "Do they not see Us advancing, gradually reducing the land (in their control), curtailing its borders on all sides? It is they who will be overcome."

Surah 47.35: "And be not slack so as to cry for peace and you have the upper hand, and Allah is with you, and He will not bring your deeds to naught."

Surah 3:56: "As for those disbelieving infidels, I will punish them with a terrible agony in this world and the next. They have no one to help or save them."

Surah 4.89: "They desire that you should disbelieve as they have disbelieved, so that you might be (all) alike; therefore take not from among them friends until they fly (their homes) in Allah's way; but if they turn back, then seize them and kill them wherever you find them, and take not from among them a friend or a helper."

Surah 2:191: "...kill the disbelievers wherever we find them."

Surah 9.33: "He it is Who sent His Apostle with guidance and the religion of truth, that He might cause it to prevail over all religions."

Surah 2:193: "And fight with them until there is no persecution, and religion should be only for Allah."

Surah 8:71: "And if they intend to act unfaithfully towards you, so indeed they acted unfaithfully towards Allah before, but He gave you mastery over them."

Surah 8:12: "Your Lord inspired the angels with the message: 'I will terrorize the unbelievers. Therefore smite them on their necks and every joint and incapacitate them. Strike off their heads and cut off each of their fingers and toes.'"

Surah 8:58: "If you apprehend treachery from any group on the part of a people (with whom you have a treaty), retaliate by breaking off (relations) with them. The infidels should not think they can bypass (Islamic law or the punishment of Allah). Surely they cannot escape."

Surah 8:39: "So, fight them till all opposition ends and the only religion is Islam."

Surah 8:59: "The infidels should not think that they can get away from us. Prepare against them whatever arms and weaponry you can muster so that you may terrorize them. They are your enemy and Allah's enemy."

Surah 8:60: "Prepare against them (non-Muslims) whatever arms and cavalry you can muster that you may strike terror in the enemies of Allah (non-Muslims), and others besides them not known to you. Whatever you spend in Allah's Cause will be repaid in full, and no wrong will be done to you."

Surah 8:7: "Allah wished to confirm the truth by His words: 'Wipe the infidels (non-Muslims) out to the last.'"

Surah 4:101: "The unbelievers (non-Muslims) are your inveterate foe."

Surah 9.29: "Fight those who do not believe in Allah, nor in the latter day, nor do they prohibit what Allah and His Apostle have prohibited, nor follow the religion of truth, out of those who have been given the Book, until they pay the tax in acknowledgment of superiority and they are in a state of subjection."

Surah 9.30: "And the Jews say: Uzair (Ezra) 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!"

My thoughts about Islam are pretty clear. I am not a fan of Islam, as I am not fan of Jehovah's WItnesses, Mormons, Scientologists, and abusive Christian sects/cults. Further, I believe that Islam will start World War III, if it hasn't already.  I believe that this country must do everything in its power to stop the spread of radical Islam, and the violence it fosters.

In fact, let me emphasize my issues with Islam even further. I believe that Islam is anti-Christ. 1 John 2:24 states, "No one who denies the Son has the Father. Whoever confesses the Son has the Father." Islam has clearly denied the Sonship of Jesus (Surah 4:171).

With all the above said, I know want to shift gears and talk about what the church's response should be to Islam in general and Muslims in particular. First, what did Jesus say about dealing with our enemies? Jesus said the following in Luke 6:27-31:

"But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who abuse you.  To one who strikes you on the cheek, offer the other also, and from one who takes away your cloak do not withhold your tunic either. Give to everyone who begs from you, and from one who takes away your goods do not demand them back. And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them. (ESV)
No where do we find in Jesus words an excuse to perform provacative acts against our (Christian's) enemies, which is how the world reacts to its enemies, but rather we are to act graciously and mercifully to our enemies.

Paul states in Romans 12:14 that Christians are to "Bless those that persecute you; bless and do not curse them." Here Paul is reminding his readers that with the same grace and mercy that God showed them when they were enemies of God should be demonstrated toward those that persecute Christians. Later in chapter 12 Paul writes about the results of this demonstration of mercy and grace to our enemies. In verse 20 Paul likens this mercy and grace to "burning coals" that we pile on the heads of our enemies. These "burning coals" burn into the enemy and cause him to see the error of his way. Imagine the amount of "burning coals" Paul had heaped upon him between his approval of Stephen's stoning (Acts 6) and his conversion (Acts 9)?

Further, Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 4:12-13 that when "reviled, we bless; when persecuted, we endure; when slandered, we entreat." Paul is using his own example of patience under fire to show Corinthian Christians the proper way to act towards non-Christian enemies of the faith.

Peter writes that Christians are not to repay "evil for evil" or "reviling for reviling". Instead Peter commands Christians to "bless" those that perform these acts against us.

There is one "big question" from those that support this Qur'an burning escapade. They ask, "But we (America) is at war with Islam, and we must act proactively to protect ourselves. Are you advocating pacifism?" My answer is a hearty, "NO!" I do not advocate any sort of pacifism, and the reason why is found in one of the same verses I have used to demonstrate why Christians should not burn Qur'ans. My justification is found in Romans 12:18, "If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all." Based on this Scripture my interactions with Muslims in America will be peaceable, insofar as I can make it so. However, if Muslims in America do not want to live peaceably, then I will defend myself and my family from their violence.

Likewise, because of the 10% within Islam that are "true believers", this country has had to go to war with other countries who have refused to coexist peacefully with the rest of the world due to the teachings of Islam. America has the God-given right to protect both her citizens and interests from the violence that Islam has perpetrated over the earth for so long. In doing so, America is acting within its God given mandate according to Scripture (Romans 13:1-7).

One last comment. A Facebook poster said I "believe theology over faith." I was floored by this because it clearly demonstrates just how ignorant those who profess Christ are of where they are to get their faith from. Theology is not my faith. My faith, or trust, is placed on the saving work of Jesus on Calvary's cross. It is not placed in my theology, though my theology tells me what I should and shouldn't believe. Neither is my faith placed upon America. America for all its historical faults is still the best country on this earth, but it is not the basis for my faith. If it ever becomes that, then I would be guilty of idolatry. Sadly, I believe that there are many professed Christians out there that have set America up as an idol. They believe that America is a Christian nation. While this country was founded upon certain Christian ideals and principles, it is not a Christian nation. Neither Jesus nor the apostles spoke of a Christian nation. Instead they spoke of a kings and priests being gathered from all peoples, including Muslims.

With the above said, should Qur'ans be burned at a church? The Biblical answer is a clear and resounding, "NO!" This action is not living peaceably with all men. It is an act of unnecessary provocation that should be avoided at all costs. Burning Qur'ans is "reviling for reviling". It is slapping those that have slapped us rather than turning the other cheek. Worse yet, it is heaping more shame on an already shameful cross. Is that something you as a believer in Christ want to do?

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