Before we begin, I want to state in a clear and succinct fashion that I do not hate individual Muslims. What I hate are the lies that deceive individual Muslims that are found in the Islam religion. Personally, I think it is sad that one has to make this type of statement, especially when addressing issues that are historical and documented facts. However, because of the politically correct world we live in, and the post-modern, multi-cultural philosophy that is in full effect in this country (USA) and world, a person must make the sort of statement like the one above.
It is really not my desire to offend 1/6th of the world's population.
However, the truth must be told, and sometimes the truth contains nasty facts that are embarrassing, offensive or angering to our Muslims friends. Let me say that it is not my intention to offend Muslims. My desire is to help Christians to prepare for the day when they have to deal with a Muslim at work, school or in their neighborhood.
The first reason for this series is to expose the lies that Mohammed and his followers have told and believed themselves. The second reason is to help Christians to understand what Islam is and what it isn’t. In studying Islam, I have found many lies. However, I am limiting the focus of this series to six lies that have been promulgated not only by Muslims (radical and moderate), but also by various political leaders both in the United States and in the world.
These six lies are as follows:
- Islam is a religion of peace.
- Islam is a religion of love.
- Allah is the same God that Jews and Christians worship.
- Mohammed is a true prophet.
- The Qur’an is a true revelation from God.
- The Arabs are descendants of Ishmael.
Each one of statements must be analyzed and accepted or dismissed on the merits of the evidence that can be found by conducting some basic research. It is my firm belief that each one of the above statements must be dismissed as lies, and consequently denounced by those in power every time they are uttered by Muslim religious leaders.
A Brief History of Islam
In 610 A.D., Muhammad, at the age of 40, received his first message from Allah in a cave outside the Arabian city of Mecca. Muhammad says that the angel Gabriel came to him and told him to recite what he was told. By Muhammad’s own admission, it was some two years later that he actually believed what had happened to him. The reason for this is that Muhammad apparently suffered from epilepsy. This is documented in various Hadiths (collections of Muslim oral traditions). These are commentaries on the life of Muhammad, and are considered sacred by Muslims.
In time, many of the Bedouin tribes on the Arabian Peninsula had converted to Islam. This group became a serious threat to the Quraysh tribe that controlled Mecca. This fact is important because Mecca was the center of Arabic paganism. In Mecca is the Kaaba, and in the Kaaba were the idols to the 360 Arabian gods, of which one was the moon god, Al-Ilah (I will discuss this Arabian god in depth in a later post). On September 17, 622, Muhammad and his followers had to flee Mecca for their lives for Medina. This journey is called the “Hijrah” and is considered by many Muslims to be the official beginning of the Islam religion.
In 630 A.D., Muhammad regained control of Mecca, and Islam became the religion of the Arabs. Two years later, Muhammad died after complaining of a headache and weakness. Muhammad did not name a successor to his budding religion, and a civil war within the Muslims exploded, and still exists to this day. During this time, two candidates emerged as successors to Muhammad, his cousin and son-in-law, Ali ibn Abi Talib and Abu Bakr, who was one of the first converts to Islam and Muhammad’s close companion.
Abu Bakr was eventually named as Muhammad’s successor, or caliph, because Ali was considered too young to hold the office. Bakr conducted The Wars of Al-Riddah (wars against apostasy) against those that rejected his claim as successor to Muhammad. Bakr ruled as caliph from 632 to 634. Bakr was succeeded by his hand-picked successor, Umar ibn Khattab. Umar ruled as caliph from 634 to 644. Umar was murdered by a servant and succeeded by Uthman ibn Affan. Uthman ruled as caliph from 644 to 656 when he too was murdered and succeeded by Muhammad’s cousin Ali. It was under these four caliphs that that Islam spread beyond the Arabian Peninsula. Islam eventually reached from modern day Afghanistan in the east to modern day Portugal in the west.
These four men are important today because of the Shia and Sunni sects within Islam. Shias are adherents of Ali and reject the caliphs that preceded Ali as caliph. Sunni Muslims are adherents of the first three caliphs, and reject Ali. Shia Muslims compose about 10% of the total Muslim population, and are primarily located in Azerbijian, Iraq, Iran, Oman and Lebanon. Sunni Muslims make up roughly 90% of Muslims worldwide and reject Ali as a rightful caliph, and accept the first three as rightful caliphs.
Islam reached its peak in the tenth century. However, when the Turks converted to Islam in the 13th century, the so-called, “second wave of Islam” was initiated. Under the Turks, Islam spread into Europe and the Balkans beginning an occupation that would last 500 years. This second wave was eventually checked at Vienna, Austria in 1683 and in 1687 by Polish.
A Brief History of the Qur’an
The Qur’an is a revelation of the Creator as opposed to the revelation of the messenger. Muhammad was an illiterate Arab, and recited what he was told in his visions. These recitations were memorized by his followers. Eventually, Muhammad’s followers saw the need to write down Muhammad’s recitations, and made use of whatever they had on hand to record the words of Muhammad. They used papyrus, flat stones, palm leaves, shoulder blades of animals, wood boards and leather to record what Muhammad said.
Abu Bakr began the first collections of these writings. Bakr’s wishes eventually led to a divergent number of translations. Eventually Uthman determined the need for a single text of the Qur’an. Therefore, between 650 and 656, a single text of the Qur’an was produced and all other versions were burned.
The Qur’an is divided into chapters, called suras and verses. The Suras are not arranged in chronological order. They are arranged from shortest to longest. The early surahs seem to deal with specific issues that Muhammad experienced with his nearly found sect. It appears that as these problems appeared Muhammad would receive a vision, recite it, and his followers would implement it.
Second to the Qur’an are the Hadiths. Hadiths are to Islam as the Talmuds are to Judaism. The Hadiths are commentaries on the Qur’an as well as narratives on the life of Muhammad and his earliest followers. The Hadiths are considered to be sacred writings and are second only to the Qur’an. It is from the Hadiths that much of Islam stands or falls.
The above has been a very brief history of Islam. If a reader wants to do more research on the history of Islam, the Qur’an and the Hadiths there are a number of resources available to research these topics. I believe that if a person, Muslim or not, that wants to find out what Islam is all about the information is out there. My attempt is simply to provoke people to think abut Islam and whether or not it is a religion based on truth or lies.
Next post: Islam is a religion of peace.