They have forsaken the Lord (Part 2)

DM (Catholic):
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dave_Hunt.  While Hunt is voluble and persistent he doesn’t seem to be a serious scholar.

His position on abortion is substantially correct.  Look at the Canaanites that sacrificed to Moloch: they imagined they were gaining some good for the community (better crops, victory in battle).  What is the purpose of abortion?  To further our own convenience and pleasure.

I support his stance on sexual morality too.  This is the key phrase: “They seek not children but pleasure, to the exclusion of all else.” He’s talking about homosexuals but the words apply to the culture at large.  Pleasure is the new god; causing pain is bad; speech that is “hurtful” is punished to the full extent of the press, regardless of its truthfulness.

His version of religious and Catholic history is obviously wrong.  For anyone who’s actually curious about the real doctrine of indulgences, here is a good article: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/07783a.htm.  A corresponding article on relics is here: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12734a.htm.  It is true that indulgences and relics have been the subject of abuses.  The people in the Church, like every person, are sinners!  But the behavior of individuals does not affect the truth of doctrine.

His analysis of the fruits of the Reformation is incomplete.  Much more has gone into the current state of affairs than the rift in the Church – the names Descartes, Freud, Darwin, etc. should spring to your mind. Check out the book “Architects of the Culture of Death”: http://www.amazon.com/Architects-Culture-Death-Donald-Marco/dp/1586170163.

Robert, he is writing about Islamic culture and the Sharia (spelling?) law; not about individual Muslims.  It is an established historical fact that Islamic law follows Muslim immigration and conquest.  How many Christian churches are there is Saudi Arabia?  You can count them on the fingers of no hands – there are none.  (Search for “Christian churches in Saudi Arabia”… They even block Christian web sites).  If I went to preach the Gospel of Our Lord in Riyadh I’d be thrown in jail and probably executed.  It is legal for a Muslim religious leader to issue a death warrant against an individual, and there is no shortage of individuals willing to carry out the sentence.  If the Washington Post were to print cartoons of the Prophet, its headquarters would be burned and its publishers assassinated.  When Muslim bombers kill hundreds or thousands of innocent people, Muslims come out into the streets to cheer, and young Muslims grow up wanting to imitate the bombers.

These are all facts.  I have nothing against Muslims who are living peaceful lives and have no desire to kill me for professing the truth of Christianity, and I don’t want to kill any Muslims.  But I’d rather live in the United States than in Saudi Arabia or Pakistan.  Life will be much shorter and less pleasant for me, as a faithful Catholic, when Islamic law is declared in this country.

The point he is trying clumsily to make about multiculturalism is that people no longer believe that truth is real; they don’t believe that there is an objective truth beyond the bounds of their subjective experiences and pleasures.  The Catholic Faith’s claim to objective truth is what people react against so intensely.  Clearly Islam makes even stronger claims to absolute truth.  Islam is fashionable in certain liberal circles only because they think anything opposed to the Christian faith must be good.

Robert (Muslim):
Peace and blessings be unto you DM,
I would  love to know where you get your ideas about Islam from?
What is “Islamic Culture”?  I’m curious to know, since as a Muslim myself, I’m not sure what that implies…
As far as “Muslim Conquest” find me one society, culture, country, who didn’t conquer another and had their law as supreme?  However, the neat little caveat, people tend to miss in Islamic history is that religious communities, namely Jews and Christians were not subject to Shariah, but were able to abide by their laws, they payed the jizah tax and Muslims payed zakat.  Furthermore, if Shariah was an imposed system that the conquered had to live under, how do you explain the millions of Muslim nations that were never conquered but accepted Islam freely from exposure from trade, reading, etc?  like the majority Muslim ethnic groups in Asia?  Lastly, Shariah is the name of legal code, not an actual set of laws.  So it varies from govt to govt.

As far as churches in Saudi Arabia?  What is that supposed to prove?  Why build one there anyway?  Take that up with the Saudi’s, has nothing to do with Islam, if it did, there wouldn’t be churches in any Muslim majority nation.  Surely you know about the 133,000 Christians in places like Tehran, there’s even a Catholic mission there, the Vatican recently sent their delegation there last year to check on the congregation…but I digress….

Who is a Muslim “religious leader”?  You do know that there is no formal structure that says who can and cannot be a “leader” right?  I have just as much authority as any fool who stands up and issues death threats.  So I don’t see how your point is valid.  Surely you jest in your commentary about extremists and such as if they represent over a billion Muslims.  Even if we said that the whole Middle East was like this, you would find out that they still only represent less than 20% of the entire Muslim population.

BTW, I would much rather live in the nation of my origin (US) too!  Life in Saudi wouldn’t be good for me either and I’m a Muslim!  So there must be something else if Saudi is supposed to be paradise for Muslims and hell for others right?  Furthermore, just so you know this whole no Christian thing in Saudi is a new invention.  The Prophet (saw) welcomed Christians and Jews in both Mecca and Medina, and on several occasions let the Christian delegation use his Mosque for their prayer services.  As Muslims we are commanded to follow his example….but the Saudi’s….well I can write another 8 pages on them, just a little inside knowledge:  Most Muslims deplore the Saudi’s just so you know…

As far as Islam making “stronger” claims to absolute truth, I would love to see how that is.  Islam says that any who believes in the God of Abraham (saw) and the last day will go to paradise.  Most Christians say if you don’t believe as they do you go to hell, and Jews believe the righteous will be rewarded regardless.  I have yet to hear any Christian doctrine that doesn’t claim to be the only way.  In the second Surah of the Quran we are told that Jews and Christians will go to heaven too regardless of whether or not they are Muslim.  I can’t recall the last time I saw an entire cable channel dedicated to Muslim evangelism, or Muslims knocking on doors, riding bikes, handing out flyers etc. to show that we have ultimate truth.

no disrespect intended, but I’m reminded of a scripture about beams and eyes…

James:
Robert, I think DM’s point is that you seem to be in the minority in terms of your view of true Islam. Obviously, if most Muslims thought like you, the presumption is that Islam would truly be thought of as a religion of peace and not violence. I think an important thing to discuss is whether the terrorist are justified in the Quran or condemned. In Northern Nigeria (which is majority Muslim), most Muslim apostates are severely persecuted and or killed. My father-in laws house was burned to the ground and his family was forced to flee to the Christian west due to the dictates of the Muslim majority there. Are the Muslims over there justified in their actions? My aunt-in law was a Muslim apostate turned Christian but she was able to survive because she lived in the west among the Christian majority. Most would agree these accounts are not merely anecdotal. Why do you think this is?

Now I’m not a Muslim scholar so bare with me, (and I know you warned me about Surah 9 before) but I’d be interested in your interpretation of the following verse(s) that correspond with Dave Hunt’s article :

“Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor forbid what has been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger [i.e., uphold sharia], nor embrace the true faith, [even if they are] from among the People of the Book [Jews and Christians], until they pay tribute with willing submission, and feel themselves utterly subdued” (Surah 9:29)

“I have been commanded [by Allah] to fight against mankind until they testify that none but Allah is to be worshipped and that Muhammad is Allah’s Messenger” (Bukhari B2N24)

“Infidels are those who say Allah is one of three… [i.e., the Christian Trinity; ]” (5:73).

“Infidels are those who say Allah is the Christ [Jesus], son of Mary” (5:17).

DM, Well I hope you didn’t make up your mind concerning Dave Hunt based on a Wikipedia entry. That would most certainly be a hasty generalization. Keep in mind, I don’t necessarily agree with Dave Hunt especially in his complete condemnation of Calvinism as a falsehood. You assert that “His version of religious and Catholic history is obviously wrong” yet you yourself  admit to the abuses of indulgences and relics. Just out of curiosity, what specifically is wrong concerning what he wrote?

DM (Catholic):
The grace and peace of God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ be with
you all!  I didn’t have time to respond yesterday, so I’ll send a short
message now, I hope to send a more detailed one later.

James asked the right question.  It is my understanding that conversion
of unbelievers by force, destruction of unbelievers if they refuse to
convert, and armed defense and propagation of the Islamic faith are all
justifiable under Islamic faith and law, and that reasonable, faithful,
and orthodox Muslims are justified in acting on these tenets of faith.
I also understand that the peace of Islam is understood to be the peace
that will reign in the world after all people submit to the Islamic
faith, and there are no more unbelievers.

If I am wrong I would be very interested to read official pronouncements
by the heads of the various Muslim communities to the contrary.  I meant
to find documentary evidence to support my statements above but I don’t
have time now – maybe tonight.

As for the Reformation, indulgences, and saint’s relics:  the Catholic
church did not grind anyone under their heels; the Reformation was not a
liberation of the people; and Dave Hunt seemed to be opposed to the
doctrines themselves, not merely the abuses of the doctrines.

As for Saudi Arabia and religious freedom, the United States just
released an updated list of those countries deemed to be suffering under
prodigious abuses of religious freedoms.  I would bet that virtually all
of these countries are either Communist or dominant Muslim.  Tonight I
hope to find the list and confirm my suspicions.

Robert (Muslim):
Fair enough:

http://www.muhajabah.com/otherscondemn.php

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/west_midlands/5111092.stm

http://www.cair-net.org/html/911statements.html

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2005/07/28/national/main712548.shtml

http://groups.colgate.edu/aarislam/response.htm

http://www.islamworld.net/terror.html

http://saudinf.com/main/y7828.htm

http://www.usembassyjakarta.org/lawmaker.html

http://www.juancole.com/2005/07/friedman-wrong-about-muslims-again-and.html

http://www.fatwa-online.com/worship/jihaad/jih004/index.htm

On and On and On and On…I don’t know what to tell you guys, believe what you will, but in conjunction with my statements, fellow Muslims, and now this exhaustive list of links to official pronouncements, declarations, fatwa’s, condemnations, from scholars, mufti’s, Imams, etc. across the globe, if after this you still want to say Islam promotes, teaches, etc. violence then that’s just your belief.  As a Muslim, I respectfully disagree.

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