Mike Scruggs- Is Islam a religion of peace? That is not Islamic doctrine, but many Western leaders have brought their countries to the edge of social and cultural chaos and possible extinction in that belief. As the Prophet Hosea said: “My people are destroyed by a lack of knowledge, because you have rejected knowledge…”–Hosea 4:6a.
The main problem, and the cause of many problems, is that Western leaders have rejected the Biblical wisdom that once strengthened Western culture and understanding.
A second problem, which this article, addresses, is that they have a shallow and mistaken knowledge of Islam.
They have put multiculturalist political correctness and virtue signaling above both Biblical Wisdom and common sense reasoning.
Hence we have little discernment of danger and are open to deception. We in fact cling to our deceptions and are unlikely to look beyond the surface of language and events.
All 114 chapters of the Koran have the same subtitle:
“In the name of Allah the compassionate and merciful.”
Since “Allah” is usually translated into English as “God,” people who do not look far into the depth of the Koran and the recorded words and actions of Muhammad, called the Sunna, often assume that Islam is much like Judaism and Christianity, teaching the same things about the same god. Indeed, many chapters of the Koran contain passages that tell some of the same stories of the Bible but with important differences. Many of the same characters are mentioned including Abraham, Moses, Marion, Ishmael, and Jesus (Isa), but Marion is confused with Mary, the mother of Jesus, and Jesus is of a completely different character than Isa of the Koran, Abraham’s sacrifice centers on Ishmael rather than Isaac.
According to Muslim religious authorities, the Koran came from Allah and existed from eternity, but was given to Muhammad by the Angel Gabriel for spreading to the world. The Sunna is a collection of sayings (hadiths) and acts of Muhammad by several early Muslim authors that give the context necessary to understand the Koran. The Sunna is held to be nearly as sacred as the Koran. Many Christian and Jewish scholars have noted that both the Koran and the Sunna seem rather obviously to come from Muhammad. For that reason, Churchill and others in the early twentieth century often referred to Islam as Mohammadanism.
Since the Koran urges Muslims to follow the example of Muhammad more than 90 times, this is quite descriptive, especially since the Koran represents a considerably smaller portion of sacred Muslim literature and doctrines than the Sunna. In fact, the Koran only represents 14 percent of Islam’s sacred foundational literature. The history and sayings of the Sunna represent 86 percent and are very important since they give the context necessary to understand the Koran.
Although there are some verses in the Bible that Christian scholars struggle with, the Bible is remarkably consistent in its teachings—one might even say miraculously consistent. However, there are many inconsistencies in the Koran.
Many of the Koran’s inconsistencies appear to be related to Muhammad’s change in strategy from the beginning of his ministry in Mecca to its latter years in Medina. In the Mecca period, Muhammad sought to convince Arabs, Jews, and Christians that he was the final and most authoritative prophet in the Abrahamic tradition and sought to convince them by persuasion, even though much that persuasion was stinging condemnation with terrifying descriptions of the fate of unbelievers in hell. The success of persuasion in Mecca was, however, limited. Becoming a caravan raider and warlord in Medina, he was very successful in using violence, war, and deception to bring all of Arabia under Islam. After Muhammad’s death in 632, Islam expanded rapidly over the Middle East and North Africa. That expansion was largely by the sword.
The Rule of Abrogation. Islam settles its inconsistencies with the Rule of Abrogation (in Arabic (Naskh.) The rule is that the last thing revealed by Muhammad is the truth, effectively superseding, cancelling, or suppressing the significance of early contradictory verses and giving later verses primacy. Whenever verses are in contradiction, the chronology of the verses determines the proper interpretation. Later verses abrogate contradictory earlier verses. .
There are many peaceful verses in the Koran, especially those written in the Mecca period. But all of them have been effectively abrogated, and thus the teachings of Islam are dominated by Jihad—Holy War against all unbelievers. Deception and stealth are part of Jihad, and therefore peaceful verses may be used to deceive unbelievers. This is part of a doctrine called Taqiyya, which allows Muslims to deceive unbelievers either to defend themselves or Islam and to advance Islam. While the God of the Bible must be understood as never changing his moral positions, Allah can change his mind. Allah and Jehovah God of the Bible are not the same, and it takes only a little knowledge of the Bible and the Koran to confirm it and avoid dangerous deception.
All this creates an enormous problem for those in the West who insist on believing Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance. Almost all the peace and tolerance verses of the Koran come from the earlier period of Allah’s alleged revelation to Muhammad in Mecca, when the Prophet still hoped to convince the Christian and Jewish minorities in Arabia of the compatibility of the new revelations with their faith. But what Muhammad knew of Christian and Jewish Scripture was not extensive, often quite distorted, and usually heretical. The verses of fire, sword, destruction, and oppressive subjugation for those who do not convert to Islam come from the later period in Medina, when Muhammad’s efforts to convince the Jews and Christians to follow him as the final and authoritative Prophet of God had failed. Chapter (Sura) 9, a Medina chapter of the Koran, is thought to be the last or next to last revelation to the Prophet. Thus it has a last word status in the Koran. Unfortunately, it is the most militant, violent, and anti-Jewish and anti-Christian. Earlier abrogated verses have much less status, but they are often used disingenuously by Muslim propagandists and naively by others to present a more acceptable and less threatening image of Islam to the West. Jihad is a major doctrine of Islam. Thirty-one percent of the combined Koran and Sunna is about Jihad, and almost all of that deals with holy war against all non-Muslims.
Hence after the interpretive Doctrine of Abrogation there is very little peace and tolerance for unbelievers left in Islam. Jihad, or holy war against unbelievers, is the rule and not the exception. The only peace in Islam is when all are converted or subjugated to Islam. All must submit to Islamic Law (Sharia). Islam, indeed, means “submission.” An important fact that one must confront in dealing with Islam, but dangerously ignored by modern, politically correct scholars is that Islam is much more than just a religion. It is a total worldview encompassing every aspect of life. It is also a totalitarian, revolutionary, and expansionist ideology demanding that Islamic Law reign supreme in all of life everywhere. Jihad is the struggle to establish that Islamic religious and political hegemony in the world. There are many forms of Jihad, but the ultimate objective is the same, the dominance of Islam. The most frequently exalted form of Jihad in the Koran and the sayings of Muhammad is armed conflict with those that resist the faith of Islam.
Another precaution that should be observed in understanding Islam is the idea of moderate and radical Islam. There are many moderate Muslims, but with the exception of rather small groups, like the Shia Alawites in Syria, there is no moderate Islam. Most so-called moderate Muslims are either secularized or purely cultural Muslims. Both mainstream Sunni and Shia Islam are strongly fundamentalist. Sharia Law and playing some role in supporting or fighting holy war against all non-Muslims are not optional in fundamentalist Islam. Therein are the seeds of radical Islam. The doctrines of fundamentalist and radical Islam are the same and come directly from the Koran, Sunna, and Sharia Law. Radical Islam is essentially unbridled resurgent and revivalist fundamentalist Islam.
“The first duty of the intellectual is to tell the truth. By suppressing the truth, however honorable the motive, we are only engendering an even greater evil.”