ISIS, THEIR 6 REASONS FOR JIHAD, AND CHRISTIANITY
ISIS publishes a magazine called Dabiq. The most recent volume, Dabiq, vol 15, Break the Cross, has created quite a stir around the globe, as one of the articles confronts the Occidental "urban legend" that the violence of ISIS is being done by radicals who have twisted the teaching of Islam. In this article, "Why we hate you & why we fight you", they provide 6 reasons why they are attacking the Occident. They are:
1. "We hate you, first and foremost, because you are disbelievers; you reject the oneness of Allah" (p. 31)
2. "We hate you because your secular, liberal societies permit the very things that Allah has prohibited while banning many of the things He has permitted" (p. 31)
3. "In the case of the atheist fringe, we hate you and wage war against you because you disbelieve in the existence of your Lord and Creator." (p. 32)
4. "We hate you for your crimes against Islam and wage war against you to punish you for your transgressions against our religion. As long as your subjects continue to mock our faith, insult the prophets of Allah – including Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad – burn the Quran, and openly vilify the laws of the Shari’ah, we will continue to retaliate, not with slogans and placards, but with bullets and knives." (p. 32)
5. "We hate you for your crimes against the Muslims; your drones and fighter jets bomb, kill, and maim our people around the world, and your puppets in the usurped lands of the Muslims oppress, torture, and wage war against anyone who calls to the truth." (p. 32)
6. "We hate you for invading our lands and fight you to repel you and drive you out. As long as there is an inch of territory left for us to reclaim, jihad will continue to be a personal obligation on every single Muslim." (p. 32)
The author then states that even if the so called "political or financial reasons" ceased to be reasons for "Jihad",
"The fact is, even if you were to stop bombing us, imprisoning us, torturing us, vilifying us, and usurping our lands, we would continue to hate you because our primary reason for hating you will not cease to exist until you embrace Islam. Even if you were to pay jizyah and live under the authority of Islam in humiliation, we would continue to hate you. No doubt, we would stop fighting you then as we would stop fighting any disbelievers who enter into a covenant with us, but we would not stop hating you. What’s equally if not more important to understand is that we fight you, not simply to punish and deter you, but to bring you true freedom in this life and salvation in the Hereafter, freedom from being enslaved to your whims and desires as well as those of your clergy and legislatures, and salvation by worshiping your Creator alone and following His messenger. We fight you in order to bring you out from the darkness of disbelief and into the light of Islam, and to liberate you from the constraints of living for the sake of the worldly life alone so that you may enjoy both the blessings of the worldly life and the bliss of the Hereafter." (p. 33)
After having looked through this article, and looked at the 6 reasons that are given to support the violence of ISIS, I would like to bring up two points. First of all, the reasons provided in this article are not the views of radical Islamic war-mongers who interpret the sacred scriptures of Islam so as to support their love for violence, but, rather, the reasons provided are based upon the most natural reading of the authoritative Islamic texts.
Secondly, even a superficial reading, of the reasons that the author provides to support Jihad and the violence of ISIS, must bring the reader to the most obvious conclusion that True Bible-based Christianity and True Islam are nothing alike. Let’s look at each of the 6 reasons that they provide through the eyes of the New Testament.
(1) Christians don't hate those who do not believe in the Holy Trinity, nor are they instructed to kill them. On the contrary, the Bible clearly teaches, “So then, as we have opportunity, let us do good to everyone, and especially to those who are of the household of faith. (Gal. 6:10)” Paul says that in order to be qualified to be a Christian Elder/Pastor, one must, “be well thought of by outsiders (2 Tim. 3:7a)”, and, in Romans 12:18 Paul says, “If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all.” We could also add the words of Peter, who, in his first Epistle, says “For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. Live as people who are free, not using your freedom as a cover-up for evil, but living as servants of God. Honor everyone. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honor the emperor. (1 Pet. 2:15-17)” Regardless of what some, who have claimed to be Christians, might actually do, the Bible tells Christians to love their unbelieving neighbours, and to seek peace with them. Muslims who truly love their non-Muslim neighbours, if they obey the authoritative teachings of Islam, will love them by violently subjugating them until they either die or submit to Allah. So, the Christian who seeks to pound submission to Christianity into the “pagans” through violence, is disobeying the very clear commands of the New Testament. On the other hand, the Muslim who seeks to live peacefully with his “pagan” neighbours, not forcing them, through violence, terror, and fear, to submit to Allah, is disobeying the very clear commands of the Holy writings of Islam.
(2) Christians are called upon to having nothing to do with the sinful passions of the world, BUT, as we saw above in the first point, to LOVE sinners enough that Christians are willing to die at the hands of Pagans because of their goodness. Note what Peter says, “But, if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God. (1 Pet. 2:20b)” And again, “But even if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. (1 Pet. 3:14a).” Oh wait, again, “For it is better to suffer for doing good, if that should be God’s will than for doing evil. (1 Pet. 3:17.)” And once again, “For the time that is past suffices for doing what the Gentiles want to do, living in sensuality, passions, drunkenness, orgies, drinking parties, and lawless idolatry. With respect to this they are surprised when you do not join them in the same flood of debauchery, and they malign you; but they will give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. (1 Pet. 4: 3-5)” Note, it is not the Christian that carries out judgment on the unbelievers for their sinful ways, but God. What do true Christians do? Live holy lives. “Therefore let those who suffer according to God’s will entrust their souls to a faithful Creator while doing good. (1 Pet. 4:19)” Doing Good.
(3) See my first point.
(4), (5), & (6) What are Christians to do when they are personally oppressed? Oppressed as a group by their, or another, government? Attacked and Killed? Christians distinguish between their roles as citizens of an earthly country and their roles as Christians (citizens of the Kingdom of God). As citizens of an earthly country they may join the army, air force, or navy; and in this role they may be sent, as servants of their country, into war. However, as citizens of the Kingdom of God Christians are called upon to suffer attacks, massacre, and all forms of persecution against themselves and their local Christian communities, willingly and joyfully. Peter, for example, says, “Yet if anyone suffers as a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in that name. (1 Pet. 4:16)” Earlier, Peter says, “But if you should suffer for righteousness’ sake, you will be blessed. Have no fear of them, nor be troubled, but in your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense (apologia=a rational argument providing reasons) to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you: yet do it with gentleness and respect, having a good conscience, so that, when you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ may be put to shame. (1 Pet. 3:14-16)” Finally, earlier in the same letter, Peter says, “But if when you do good and suffer for it you endure, this is a gracious thing in the sight of God.” Peter provides Jesus-Christ as the example that Christians are to follow: Doing no evil, Christ allowed himself to be killed on a Cross. Suffering unjustly. Paul agrees with Peter, and says in Romans 12: 14 “Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them.” In verse 17 of the same chapter he says, “Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all.” Then, in verses 19-21 of the same chapter, he says, “Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, ‘Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.’ To the contrary, ‘if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.’ Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” Islam teaches, “avenge yourselves.” Jesus teaches, “Do not avenge yourselves.” Islam teaches, “If they drop a bomb on you, kill as many of them as you can.” Jesus teaches, “Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all.” So, no bombs, no knives, no axes, no guns…just a glass of water and some good food to eat. Jesus teaches that when Christians are attacked, they should invite their attacker to the next potluck dinner, and hold it in their honor!!! Islam teaches death. Christ gives life.
Many News groups have already published articles about this particular issue, such as: Fox News (http://www.foxnews.com/world/2016/08/01/isis-details-why-hate-in-new-magazine.html), the Mirror (http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/why-hate-you-isis-reveal-8533563), and the Clarion Project (http://www.clarionproject.org/news/breaking-cross-latest-isis-magazine-aimed-christians). Interestingly enough, no major news groups are talking about this.
Cf. Yoel Natan, “164 Jihad Verses in the Koran,” http://www.answering-islam.org/Quran/Themes/jihad_passages.html (accessed 2016/08/02)