Since September 11, 2001, Americans have experienced a heightened awareness of the reality that is Islamic Jihad / terrorism. Islam claims to be a religion of peace… but the statistics prove otherwise. Now I know – Tony, are you about to be condemning of the religion of Islam? Don’t you know that it’s only the “radical” Muslims that believe in murdering innocent people? And aren’t there “radical” Christians who do crazy things in the name of Jesus as well?
This is one of the most pressing issues of our day. Can’t we be accepting of the religion of Islam and still hope for peace? I think not. There have been entire books and websites dedicated to this question and to the defense or condemnation of Islam. I confess that I do not have the education or desire, honestly, to explain the intricacies of the Islamic faith – but I know one thing for sure… Islamic Terrorists are MURDERERS, NOT MARTYRS.
Martyrs are those who were persecuted for their beliefs (usually religious) and died while exercising it. Cassie Bernall was a martyr of the Christian faith. At Columbine High School on April 20, 1999 she was asked at gunpoint if she believed in God, and after answering affirmatively, she was shot. Hans Brael, Felix Manz, Michael Sattler, and many more were 16th Century martyrs for the Christian faith; they were tortured, drowned, or hung because they believed what the Bible said and exercised their religious freedom. Historically, Jesus’ disciples were hunted and executed by crucifixion or the sword after Jesus’ resurrection. What is important to note here is that the exercising of this religious freedom was imposing upon no one, save the religious adherent. They were hurting no one, and did not in any way impose upon the free will or liberty of another. They were killed because they believed, nothing else. That’s what makes a martyr.
But the Qur’an instructs the Muslim to kill the “infidel.” To murder those who DON’T believe as they do. I don’t know if you’ve ever read through the Qur’an or parts of it, but here are a few snippets…
“Slay the idolators [non-Muslims] wherever ye find them, and take them captive, and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. Fight against such of those who have been given the Scripture as believe not in Allah nor the last Day…. Go forth, light-armed and heavy-armed, and strive with your wealth and your lives in the way of Allah! (Sura 9:5,29,41).
“The Prophet said, “The person who participates in (Holy battles) in Allah’s cause and nothing compels him to do so except belief in Allah and His Apostles, will be recompensed by Allah either with a reward, or booty (if he survives) or will be admitted to Paradise (if he is killed in the battle as a martyr). Had I not found it difficult for my followers, then I would not remain behind any sariya going for Jihad and I would have loved to be martyred in Allah’s cause and then made alive, and then martyred and then made alive, and then again martyred in His cause” (Volume 1, Book 2, Number 35, Narrated Abu Huraira).
“Whoever changes his Islamic religion, kill him.” (Hadith Al Buhkari vol. 9:57)
So what exactly is an “extreme” or “radical” Muslim? One who believes and lives by the words of the Qur’an? Well, these instructions seem pretty straight forward to me… but I know that many Muslims have defended their faith against the attack that I’m making. That is not the point of this blog.
The point is this… In exercising their religion, Islamic terrorists are compelled to infringe on the lives of non-believers (non-Muslims) to the point of taking their lives.
They are not the persecuted… they are the persecutors.
They are not the oppressed… they are the oppressors.
They are not the misunderstood… they are the underestimated.
They are not the religion of peace… they are the religion of destruction.
They are not martyrs… they are murderers.
Here is a Word from the God of the Bible – the God of Christianity.
There is no other God but Me, a righteous God and Savior. There is no one except Me.
Turn to me and be saved, all the ends of the earth. For I am God, and there is no other.
By Myself I have sworn, Truth has gone from My mouth, a word that will not be revoked:
Every knee will bow to me, every tongue will swear allegiance.
It will be said to Me: Only in the Lord is righteousness and strength.
All who are incensed against Him will come to Him and be put to shame.
– Isaiah 45:21-24
A real God does not need or desire the suicide of an “extremist” follower to carry out His purposes and defend His name against other gods. He is the only God. All others do not exist. And one glorious day, even those who have given their lives for Islam will bow to the authority of Yahweh, the God of Israel – the God of Christianity.
Grace and Peace,