What the Qur'an Really Says About Violence
[ Read Part 1 & Part 2 first. ]
Then there is the issue of how the Qur'an treats Jews and Christians. Some have claimed that the Qur'an says Jews are consigned to "humiliation and wretchedness" (2:61), try to introduce corruption (5:64), have always been disobedient (5:78), and are enemies of God (2:97-98). When addressing verses that, on the surface, seem to be derogatory toward Jews, again, it is essential that the verses be placed in context (remember Scriptural Exegesis 101) .
When sincere scholarship and exegesis is applied to the Qur'an, it becomes a clear that the claim of the Qur'an's anti-Semitism is an absurd fallacy.
There are many verses in the Quran about Jews and Christians. Hassaballa is correct in saying that some of them are for specific people for a specific time, but others, conveniently omitted by Hassaballa, are to be applied to todays Christians and Jews.
We need to know which verses apply to todays Christians and Jews. We need to hear what the great Islamic scholars taught about the Quranic position regarding the Christians and Jews. We need to see what Muhammad did with respect to those verses, i.e. what were his actions in dealing with the Christians and Jews once he had the power to dominate them. Did he honor them, or subject them brutally?
Lets take a look at a specific Quranic injunction against Jews and Christians that is applicable now and to be obeyed by todays Muslims.
The most vulgar of Quranic verses that instruct Muslims on how to deal with Jews and Christians is 9:29. Below are 2 different translations:
9:29 Fight against those who (1) believe not in Allah, (2) nor in the Last Day, (3) nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger (4) and those who acknowledge not the religion of truth (i.e. Islam) among the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), until they pay the Jizyah with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued.The Noble Quran.
9:29 Fight against such of those to whom the Scriptures were given as believe neither in God nor the Last Day, who do not forbid what God and His apostle have forbidden, and do not embrace the true Faith, until they pay tribute out of hand and are utterly subdued.N. J. Dawood .
Here Muhammad is commanding his followers to make war upon Christians and Jews unless they converted to Islam or paid extortion (this is jizyah).
Now lets read what the great Islamic scholars say about this verse. Ibn Kathirs Quranic commentary for verse 9:29, pages 405 409, states:
The Order to fight People of the Scriptures until they give the Jizyah.
This honorable Ayah was revealed with the order to fight the People of the Book, after the Pagans were defeated, the people entered Allahs religion in large numbers, and the Arabian Peninsula was secured under the Muslims control. Allah commanded His Messenger to fight the People of the Scriptures, Jews and Christians, on the ninth year of Hijrah, and he prepared his army to fight the Romans and called the people to Jihad announcing his intent and destination .
Paying Jizyah is a Sign of Kufr (Unbeliever) and Disgrace.
Allah said, until they pay the Jizyah, if they do not choose to embrace Islam, with willing submission, in defeat and subservience, and feel themselves subdued, disgraced, humiliated and belittled. Therefore, Muslims are not allowed to honor the people of Dhimmah or elevate them above Muslims, for they are miserable, disgraced and humiliated.
I dont want you to miss it. Ibn Kathir, one of the greatest Muslim scholars ever, states that Christians and Jews that dont embrace Islam are forced to submit in defeat, subservience, and feel themselves subdued, disgraced, humiliated and belittled. Muslims are not allowed to honor Christians and Jews, for they are miserable, disgraced, and humiliated.
A second reference for this verse comes from the "Reliance of the Traveler", page 559 . This book is not just a commentary; rather it is "A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law." It is based upon the Shafii school of Islamic law. (There are four major schools of Islamic jurisprudence, the Shafii being the largest of them). The book represents not just the work of a single scholar, but rather "represents a large collectivity of scholars ." It is not just a simple Quranic commentary; rather it is a foundational theological textbook.
The Caliph makes war upon the Jews, Christians, and Zoroastrians, provided he has first invited them to enter Islam in faith and practice, and if they will not, then invited them to enter the social order of Islam by paying the non-Muslim poll tax Jizya in accordance with the word of Allah Most High:
"Fight those who do not believe in Allah and the Last Day and who forbid not what Allah and His messenger have forbidden who do not practice the religion of truth, being of those who have been given the Book until they pay the poll tax out of hand and are humbled." 9:29
The Caliph fights all other peoples until they become Muslim .
It sounds like to me that Islamic teaching oppresses the Christians and the Jews. It certainly doesnt honor them. Look! The Muslims are to make war upon them, compel to convert to Islam, or pay extortion. Id say that Hassaballa has presented us with a whitewashed account of how Islam denigrates non-Muslims, and he has presented us with his "absurd fallacy".
Now lets bump this up a notch and observe Muhammads actions. Actions speak louder than words so, what do Muhammads actions tell us?
MUHAMMADS ATTACK UPON TABUK AND DEALINGS WITH AYLAH
Muhammad had no intention of living peacefully, side by side with non-Muslims, even with those who were far from his communitys borders. Jews and Christians were to be given the option of converting to Islam, pay the extortion, or fight and die.
An account of this incident is given in this chapter.
The account describes that Muhammad heard the Romans were going to attack him. He marshaled 30,000 of his troops and they went north to the town of Tabuk to do battle with the Romans. However, upon arriving, they found that there was no threat at all. Instead Muhammad sent a detachment to Ayla, a small nearby Christian fishing village, to give them the afore mentioned options: convert, pay the extortion tax - jizya, or die. The Christian leader decided to pay the tribute.
Ive extracted this excerpt from the webpage above.
"To John ibn Rabah and the Chiefs of Aylah. Peace be on you! I praise God for you, beside whom there is no Lord. I will not fight against you until I have written thus unto you. Believe, or else pay tribute. And be obedient unto the Lord and his Prophet, and the messengers of his Prophet. Honor them and clothe them with excellent vestments, not with inferior raiment. Specially clothe Zeid with excellent garments. As long as my messengers are pleased, so likewise am I. Ye know the tribute. If ye desire to have security by sea and by land, obey the Lord and his Apostle, and he will defend you from every claim, whether by Arab or foreigner, saving the claim of the Lord and his Apostle. But if ye oppose and displease them, I will not accept from you a single thing, until I have fought against you and taken captive your little ones and slain the elder.
Do you see how Muhammads threats to attack these people demonstrate his teachings in Sura 9:29? Make war upon the Christians and Jews, unless they convert or pay the extortion. Real Islam, i.e. Muhammads Islam, is clearly taught in the Quran and demonstrated by Muhammads actions and they speak loudly here. Committed near the end of his life, they portray what he wanted his followers to continue to do: attack and conquer non-Muslim people.
I dont know about you, but I dont think Id view someone who threatens me with death, or coerces me to convert to his religion, or forces me to pay him extortion, as someone who "honors" me. Instead, Id view him as a criminal.
I view Muhammad little different than:
|"Youre Gonna Pay For Protection" - Al Capone|
Muhammad was a religious criminal. He used religion to justify his crimes. Just as todays Muslims justify their crimes under Islam, so Muhammad did the same. Muhammad is the terrorists example. They are only doing what he did.
Hassaballa is clearly wrong about Islam honoring Jews and Christians of today. Instead it denigrates them. Hassaballas imagination that the Quran honors Christians and Jews is the real "absurd fallacy"
I neither deny nor dismiss the existence of Muslims who use the Qur'an to justify their acts of terrorism and murder. These Muslims, like Islam's conservative critics, also misquote or quote the Qur'an out of context.
Isnt it interesting that Hassaballa accuses others of not providing actual contexts while he himself never provides a single reference? I have quoted the Quran and other Islamic source materials, and I have provided the contexts and the references. Rather, it is the Muslim writers like Hassaballa who misquote the Quran out of context.
It is this fueling of hatred and intolerance against American Muslims that threatens to destroy the fabric of our nation's unity.
There cannot be national unity when Muslims are not committed to the nation! True Muslims follow Muhammad and are not committed to any nation; rather they are committed to the cause of Islams domination. Many Muslims in America have stated that they are not loyal to America but loyal only to their fellow Muslims. In this, they are telling the truth.
Take for example an Imam from one of the largest mosques in New York.
This Imam, Sheik Mohammad Al-Gameia, was proclaimed to be a moderate Muslim. He was involved in "interfaith-dialogs", he met with and prayed with leaders of other faiths, and he spoke against anti-Semitism and violence. He spoke just like Hassaballa and did a good job whitewashing the dark truth about Islam and fooling many prominent New Yorkers.
In late 2001 he left the country and went to Egypt. There he began to speak the truth of what he really thought. What do you imagine he said? You can read about him at this article:
Let me quote a portion of it:
The press is also starting to look into the Islamic Cultural Center in New York. Its erstwhile imam, Sheik Mohammad Al-Gamei'a, had been participating as a moderate in interfaith dialogue in the city. In the wake of Sept. 11, he decamped to Egypt, where, in an interview on an unofficial Web site of Al-Azhar University, he voiced the rankest sort of anti-Semitism, saying, among other things, that a Jewish conspiracy was behind the Sept. 11 atrocities.
There is another similar case like this going on in Ohio. The leader of one of the largest Mosques in Ohio has just been convicted of crimes. It seems that prior to becoming the mosque leader he was involved with many terrorist groups. He is on film for making statements to encourage the murder of Jewish people and he said that terrorism was his life. You can read the article here:
Below is a quote:
But it's not just the White House that has been taken in. In Cleveland, the head of the local Islamic Center, Fawaz Damra, was exposed recently for having called on fellow Palestinians in Chicago to donate money to Islamic Jihad, a terrorist group, this despite being the model of interfaith cooperation in Cleveland. Damra is well-known for inviting Jews to celebrate the end of Ramadan at his Islamic Center, but he has also been videotaped in 1991 asking a group to donate money to kill Jews. " Who will give $500?" he asks on the tape, to kill "12 Jews," whom he calls "the sons of monkeys and pigs."
Below is another article detailing this mans vulgar speech:
Here is a quote:
"[Muslims should be] directing all rifles at the first and last enemy of the Islamic nation, and that is the sons of monkeys and pigs, the Jews," he told the audience.
Now then, does this Muslim have a precedent to follow from early Islam? You bet he does! Why did Damra say that Jews were descendants of pigs and apes? Because that is what the Quran teaches!
Muhammad spoke the Quranic verse below in reference to Jews:
5:60 Say: Shall I tell you who will receive a worse reward from God? Those whom God has cursed and with whom He has been angry, transforming them into apes and swine, and those who serve the devil. Worse is the plight of these and they have strayed farther from the right path.
In fact, Muhammad taught that Allah had turned Jews into pigs, apes, rats, and lizards! Yes, Muhammad was a bizarre man, with bizarre and denigrating beliefs. Read this article to see some of Muhammads weird beliefs: Muhammad and the Animals
Now, why did Mohammad Al-Gamei'a, betray those that trusted him and why did he proclaim terrorism? Because that is what the early Muslims did! During Muhammads time Muslims betrayed their friendships with a people who were their allies. For example, there were Muslims who were allies with the Jewish tribe of the Banu Qaynuqa. The Muslims attacked these people and told them:
"Hearts have changed. Islam has blotted all treaties out.""The Life of Muhammad", by Sir William Muir, chapter 13.
Later, Muhammads followers betrayed another group of people they had a covenant with, the Banu Nadhir tribe. Muhammad told them,
"Hearts have changed," he replied, "and Islam has wiped out the old covenants." From Tabaris History, volume 7, page 158.
True Muslims will not be loyal to any non-Muslim society. Hassaballa isnt worried about our nations fabric; he is worried about Islam being exposed for what it really is. If the early Muslims betrayed friends, so to will todays Muslims. In fact, weve already seen it happen several times. How many more Muslim "Americans" will have to murder other Americans, before you figure this out? How many more violent crimes will "ordinary" Muslims need to commit before you realize, "hey, their religion really is about domination and violence"?
It would be foolish for Americans to trust true Muslims. Because they are committed to Islam, they cannot be loyal to America. They will not serve two masters. Unlike many other faiths, Islam is about domination over non-Muslims. That is why they cannot be loyal to a non-Islamic system.
It is not the critics that are fueling hatred, it is Islam. Islam teaches subjection and violence against non-Muslims. When the Quran commands Muslims to make war upon Christians and Jews unless they convert to Islam or pay an extortion tax, (jizyah), then it is Islam that is causing the harm. When the Quran commands Muslims to humiliate and subdue Jews and Christians, then it is Islam that is preaching bigotry and hatred. When Islam teaches betrayal of non-Muslims it is Islam that fuels the hatred.
Want more? What does the Quran call todays Christians and Jews? What does it ask God to do to them? Lets see: Below are 3 translations of 9:30
YUSUFALI: The Jews call 'Uzair a son of Allah, and the Christians call Christ the son of Allah. That is a saying from their mouth; (in this) they but imitate what the unbelievers of old used to say. Allah's curse be on them: how they are deluded away from the Truth!
PICKTHALL: And the Jews say: Ezra is the son of Allah, and the Christians say: The Messiah is the son of Allah. That is their saying with their mouths. They imitate the saying of those who disbelieved of old. Allah (Himself) fighteth against them. How perverse are they!
SHAKIR: And the Jews say: Uzair 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!
Look at the ugliness in this verse. 1) We hear Muhammad asking Allah to curse, fight, and destroy the Christians and Jews. 2) We hear Muhammad call the Christians and Jews deluded, perverse, and turned away.
Does that sound like respect and honor to you? It sounds like Muhammad hated the Christians and Jews because they rejected him as a false prophet.
The fabric of American society is built upon fidelity. Yet true Muslims cannot deliver this fidelity. Muhammad and his Muslims told the people they betrayed that their loyalty to Islam was greater than his loyalty to his fellow citizens. And take note, we have already seen several Muslim Americans betray their fellow Americans. Soon we will see more. It is now only a matter of time before Muslim car bombers begin their work here in America.
FINAL COMMENTS, CONCLUSION, AND CRITICISMS
I have several comments.
I challenge all Muslims to review the darkness in their faith. And I ask the Muslims, "If you truly seek peace amongst mankind, why do you follow a man who not only taught, but practiced warfare, oppression, discrimination, and humiliation of all non-Muslims?
Read the early Islamic writings for yourself. See the brutality and crimes Muhammad committed. And the early Muslims left a long trail of blood and destruction in their wake.
There are probably millions of wonderful, peaceful, Muslims in the world. This does not absolve their faith of the violence inherent in its core teaching. Real Islam, Muhammads Islam, is a poison in humanitys soul. From Indonesia, to Thailand, the Philippines, to Afghanistan, to Iran, to Turkey, to Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Algeria wherever you find real Islam, i.e. Muhammads Islam, you find atrocities and violence.
I invite Muslims to take a second look at Muhammads evil. I challenge them to compare Muhammad to Jesus. Jesus came to undo the works of Satan. Muhammad came to undo the work of Christ.
I say that Jesus came to bring us true life, and just as Jesus told the people of His time to put their faith in Him, so I invite Muslims to put their faith in Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
CONCLUSION: MUHAMMAD AND THE QURAN JUDGED
I have presented the contexts of what the Quran really says about violence and shown that based upon the early Islamic source materials, the Quran, Traditions, (Hadith), and Muhammads Biographical records (Sira), teach that violence is to be used to spread Islams domain.
We have seen that from the time Muhammad fled to Medina, he murdered, robbed, enslaved, and assassinated, non-Muslims. This record is documented by the early Muslim writers and historians. Weve read what some of the great Muslim scholars have written and they state that the Quran teaches, even commands, these violent acts. Enough with this false chant "Islam is peace." No! Islam is a religion of domination it has never been a religion of peace.
I have a criticism of Beliefnet. They have posted an inaccurate Muslims work as authentic teachings on Islam but they have not bothered to present the other side of the story. Why?
They have presented many pro and con articles on Christianity, even hosted a theological debate between a Christian, Ben Witherington, and non-Christian, Elaine Pagels. Theyve posted articles that criticize Christianity strongly. But Beliefnet remains silent when it comes to a simple article or discussion presenting the violent teachings of Islam. It chooses to allow its readers to wallow in the pit of ignorance.
Dont depend on modern, Western Muslim writers, like Hassaballa, to tell you the truth: they hardly ever will. Rather, listen to the ex-Muslims who will tell you the truth:
When the Muslim terrorists begin to car bomb and terrorize here in America, Steve Waldman and Deborah Caldwell will bear responsibility because as writers on Islam, theyve allowed their political or personal prejudices, to keep them silent and not tell Americans about Islams dark side. Theyve fed America and the West the bread of deception, leavened with the yeast of credulity, and seasoned with oblivion. The Muslim terrorists are dedicated, devout, and daring. They are rooted in the Quran and Muhammads lifestyle. Real Islam, Muhammads Islam, is a poison in humanitys soul.
PRAYER FOR SALVATION
This prayer is written for anyone. This includes Muslims who are seeking the truth and who want to know God in a personal and truthful way.
"Lord Jesus, I believe in You. I believe that You are the Son of God and the Lord. I believe that You died for my sins and were raised from the dead. I confess that I am a sinner and I ask You to come into my heart, cleanse me from my sins, and forgive me for my sins. I turn to follow and obey You I put my faith in you. I now receive You as Messiah and Lord and totally commit my life to You." Amen.
1) Encyclopadia of Islam, published by Brill, Leiden, Netherlands
2) al-Tabari, "The History of al-Tabari", (Ta'rikh al-rusul wa'l-muluk), State University of New York Press 1993
3) Guillaume, A., "The Life of Muhammad", a translation of Ibn Ishaq's "Sirat Rasul Allah", Oxford University Press, Karachi, Pakistan.
4) Muslim, A., "Sahih Muslim", translated by A. Sidiqqi, International Islamic Publishing House, Riyadh, KSA.
5) Ibn Sa'd, (d. 852 A.D.), "Kitab al-Tabaqat al-Kabir", (Book of the Major Classes), translated by S. Moinul Haq, Pakistan Historical Society.
6) The Noble Quran, translated by Dr. Muhammad Taqi-ud-Din Al-Hilali and Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan, published by Maktaba Dar-us-Salam, PO Box 21441, Riyadh 11475, Saudi Arabia, 1994
7) Gatje, Helmut, "The Quran and its Exegesis", Oneworld, Oxford, England, 1997
8) Ibn Kathir, "Tafsir of Ibn Kathir" published by Darussalam, New York, NY, 2000.
9) Abu Dawud, Suliman, "Sunan", al-Madina, New Delhi, 1985, translated by A. Hasan
10) Dawood, N. J., "The Koran", Penguin, London, England, 1995
11) al-Misri, Ahmad, "Reliance of the Traveler", (A Classic Manual of Islamic Sacred Law), translated by Nuh Ha Mim Keller, published by Amana publications, Beltsville, Maryland, USA 1991
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