"I went to Jerusalem to become acquainted (Gk. istoria) with Cephas" - Paul's words from Galatians 1:18.

A Sincere Question for Those Who Condemn the Burning of Korans in America

The U.S. military has confirmed that Bibles of United States soldiers serving in Afghanistan were confiscated and destroyed by order of the U.S. State Department because Muslims were offended that the soldiers were filmed reading the Bibles on Arabic Al Jazeera television.  CNN reported that that the Bibles were "burned" in order to satisfy the demands of Muslim authorities who were deeply offended that copies of the official sacred book of Christianity, printed in the local language of the Afghans and read by U.S. soldiers fluent in Pashto, were allowed into the country. The burning of the Bibles in Afghansitan was approved by the U.S. government, lauded by the Afghan Muslims and seemed to satiate the anger of those Muslims deeply offended at Bible reading on Arab network television.

Now General David H. Petraeus, U.S. military commander in Afghanistan, has denounced plans by a Florida church to burn copies of the Koran this weekend. The White House has also condemned the Florida church's plan, with press secretary Robert Gibbs reiterating Petraeus's contention that the act would be "offensive" to Muslims.  State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley called the proposed demonstration "un-American" and said it was "inconsistent with the values of religious tolerance and religious freedom." Muslim, Christian, and other religious leaders are putting pressure on Pastor Terry Jones of Dove World Outreach Center in Gainsville, Florida not to follow through with his declaration that he will burn the Korans this Saturday, September 11.

I  happen to agree that the church's plan to burn the Korans is unwise, and it is obvious that there is outrage in the Muslim world and in our government over the pastor's plan, but my question is a simple and sincere one:  Why was there not a similar outrage among Muslims, the American military and the American government over the burning of Bibles in Afghanistan?



104 comments:

Darby Livingston said...

A serious answer for a serious question: Because Christians don't kill their opponents. I don't think it goes beyond going along to get along in these people's minds.

Thy Peace said...

Because Christians by intrinsic nature do not go about destroying their enemies, as in attempting to do them bodily harm or burn buildings. I do have to admit that there are some professed Christians who did do harm, but their actions go against the teachings of Christ.

As in ... Love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you and persecute you.

The U.S. military was appeasing the Moslems in Afghanistan. Because of the endemic corruption, Afghanistan is a lost cause.

Wade Burleson said...

Darby and Thy Peace,

I think both of you have offered a thoughtful answer. We seem to be attempting appeasement toward radicals who are only appeased by the absence of any other religion but their own. In the long run one wonders how effective appeasement is.

Thy Peace said...

There is one other minor difference.

For Moslems, the Koran is a holy object. For them to burn or deface it is a defilement or a sacrilege.

For Christians, the Bible is a holy book and it reveals a living God Jesus Christ. But the Bible is not held to the same "holy object" status as by the Moslems of the Koran. That is Christians do not worship the Bible. At least that is my understanding.

Wade Burleson said...

Thy Peace,

Great point. I think you are spot on.

Christiane said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bob Cleveland said...

One might also observe that God says vengeance is His, which not only means that it is not ours, but also that He will settle the score in His own time.

That is apparently not the case with Islam.

Thy Peace said...

L's: What of a soldier who wishes to read the Bible in a local language? Why is that against the military rules, as long as that soldier is not proselytizing. When someone wants to learn a foreign language, it is helpful to read a familiar text in the new language.

Steven Stark said...

It may be important to remember that we are occupying Afghanistan right now. We are an invading power. So I am sure the military is taking extra pains to show that we have little interest in dominating them culturally and religiously.

Burning bibles or Korans is still silly of course, but it's a bad strategy to start arguing with locals about their religious and cultural wishes - so long as they do not interfere with our security in an immediate way.

Steven Stark said...

Basically, it looks like we are taking great pains to keep this war from looking religious in nature. To keep it us from looking like the "crusading" West.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

I think it unwise, irresponsible, and an attempt to simply draw attention to the church.

But I agree with NYC mayor Bloomberg:

"In a strange way, I'm here to defend his right to do that. I happen to think that it is distasteful."

"The First Amendment protects everybody, and you can't say that we're going to apply the First Amendment to only those cases where we are in agreement."

"If you want to be able to say what you want to say when the time comes that you want to say it, you have to defend others, no matter how, how much you disagree with them."

You see, his burning of the Koran is "protected free speech". He is free to burn any book he wants to in the U.S. But I hope he decides not to go through with it.

Yes, protected free speech means that he is free to exercise his speech without fear that the government will intervene and attempt to stop him.

But I lived in Gainesville for a decade or so, and I believe the fire department or the environmental agency there will enforce their burn ban and somehow not allow him to go through with it.

Perhaps environmentalists will save the day. :)

Gene Scarborough said...

I think it has more to do with TV ratings than the importance of telling truth!!!

That crazy unknown preacher in Florida has gotten more advertising by being mean / crazy / vengeful than he ever could have gotten locally by good ministry.

Ratings, man, ratings!!!!

shadowspring said...

To answer the final question of your blog post: because Afghanistan is not the United States of American, obviously!

Afghanistan is not America. It is not a safe place. Even if someone was privately disturbed by the Bible burning, the general populace is not free to discuss such things. The Taliban still has spies in many places, and long memories. Who will protect dissenters in the middle of the night, when the US soldiers are not around? This is the conundrum of all trying to restore Afghanistan to the more free country it once was.

Neither do they think like Americans, so there were many who probably thought "big deal". After all, the Taliban publicly hangs and beats people for much less than that. Those righteous who have survived under that regime have seen so much greater suffering that taking your second language copy of your religious text away would not seem worthy of an outpouring of emotion.

No English Bibles were destroyed. The soldiers in question could still freely practice their religion. They just could not practice their Pashtun skills at the same time.

Since we are all living epistles, read and known by all men, not having a Pashtun Bible won't end the Christian witness of these soldiers either.

Another Christian response: http://trinityandhumanity.wordpress.com/2010/09/08/jesus-has-created-one-new-humanity/

Tami Martin said...

I don't post often, but this just really caught me.

I feel like I'm standing with two of my children teaching them a valuable lesson: two wrongs don't make a right. Just because your brother did this to you, does not make it right for you to do it to him. Yes. He was wrong. But you don't need to be wrong too.

Anonymous said...

Good question.

It is ridiculous to go around burning books. It is ridiculous to burn the Koran or to burn the Bible.

Christians should not get on the bandwagon of burning religious books.

But since we live in a free society, people around the world are going to have to "buck up" and realize that someone, somewhere in the U.S. might do something they don't like. That just happens in a society with 300 million people, you know.

All of this apologizing and worrying about how this one guy's act is going to put missionaries and soldiers at risk, while heartfelt, is misplaced. One, we can't do anything about it. And two, are the public worrying about it just sounds defensive.

In WWII the music, movie and radio industry personalities (as well as common citizens) made fun of Hitler, the Nazis, the Emperor of Japan, used racial stereotypes etc. Nothing was out of bounds.

Did this stuff incense or enemies? Of course it did. Was it all in good taste? Of course it wasn't.

Did the American people sit around and fret about how this make our enemies fight us harder or get them worked up?

Of course not.

And the reason was that even if a particular display was out of bounds, it really didn't matter how opponents felt about it. We were not interested in our how our opponents felt. If it caused more people to support the Nazis or the Emperor, then so be it. Let them die for the cause they believe in.

The Army's burning of Bibles is an illustration of how we are off track on this. We are all too worried about what other people are going to think.

I don't like the idea of the guy burning the Koran. But I don't like it because it gets Muslim's fired up. I could care less what gets them fired up.

I don't like it because it's the kind of thing that Muslims would do, and it's not representative of what Christ stands for. I am concerned with His glory, not Muslim sensibilities.

The entire Muslim world needs to loosen up. We are in the 21st century. The Muslim world may not want to loosen up. That's their prerogative.

But if they don't want to, that does not mean that the whole world has to try an assuage their tender feelings.

That's what the U.S. Army and too many of us are caught up in.

Louis

Robin Michelle said...

Burning religious text is wrong, period.

I question how wise it was to translate the Bible then read it over local networks. We should spread the gospel,yes, but we should do it in a sensitive manner. Blatantly flaunting Christianity and the Bible in an extremist Muslim world where they are all too happy to slaughter people over smaller things? notsobright.

For those who say "Christians don't kill their enemies" Check history...or even current events around the world. There have been and still are many, many distasteful things done in the name of Christianity.

Steve Bezner said...

Wade,

Good question. Wouldn't it have something to do with being a gracious guest (yes, I see the irony of an invading army being a "guest") as opposed to a gracious host?

Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

Re: "burning of religious books is wrong"

Acts 19.17-20
When this became known to the Jews and Greeks living in Ephesus, they were all seized with fear, and the name of the Lord Jesus was held in high honor. Many of those who believed now came and openly confessed their evil deeds. A number who had practiced sorcery brought their scrolls together and burned them publicly. When they calculated the value of the scrolls, the total came to fifty thousand drachmas. In this way the word of the Lord spread widely and grew in power.

Jonquil said...

38 "You have heard that it was said, 'Eye for eye, and tooth for tooth.' 39 But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. 40 And if someone wants to sue you and take your tunic, let him have your cloak as well. 41 If someone forces you to go one mile, go with him two miles. 42 Give to the one who asks you, and do not turn away from the one who wants to borrow from you.


43 "You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' 44 But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? 47 And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? 48 Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

I'm serious. That's my answer.

Roadmaker said...

In answer to your final question, Wade, there was no outrage among: a) the Muslims, because they're lost and in darkness - lost people act that way, b) our government, because they're not far behind "a)" and the military, because Soldiers don't have the privilege of free speech given to our citizens, especially when they're in combat.

Jonquil said...

Tami, I was troubled by this:

"And the reason was that even if a particular display was out of bounds, it really didn't matter how opponents felt about it. We were not interested in our how our opponents felt."

The problem is that the "Japs" in this country weren't our opponents. There were real American citizens, citizens for multiple generations, who were being caricatured in Disney and Warners cartoons that to this day are considered too offensive to show. (This is just one example, by the way.)

Life magazine published an article called "How to tell the Japs from the Chinese" that was full of physical slurs -- why? Because the Chinese government was our ally, not because Chinese human beings were actually better human beings than Japanese human beings. Again, that endangered real Japanese citizens.

I mention this because the same principle applies. We have decent fellow Americans who are Muslims, have had for generations. Most of those people are just as horrified by beheadings and assassinations as our Catholic citizens were by the atrocities committed by the IRA.

When we stereotype all Muslims, we are stereotyping our brothers and sisters -- not just our brothers and sisters in the human family, but our brother and sister Americans.

I like to think that we get a little better with the passing years, and that we don't look with nostalgia on the practices we have outgrown. Collective punishment is not in the best traditions of our country, or, I believe, of our faith.

Joe White... said...

I think President Obama is missing a golden opportunity to brooker a peace deal. (1) The man in Florida agrees not to burn the Quran or call Islam a religion of hate... and (2)Muslims agree to stop flying planes into buildings, killing innocent people, stoning women, threatening cartoonists, and issuing fatwas against people who disagree with them!

Deal? Yes? No?

Darby Livingston said...

Great comment Joe White!

Isn't it interesting that one man has merely threatened to burn Korans and already worldwide Muslims are actually protesting, burning American flags and chanting "death to Christians"?

It's also interesting that the president is chastising this man's use of freedom of speech and religion because it goes against the American value of religious free speech and tolerance. How about some consistency?

Steven Stark said...

"It's also interesting that the president is chastising this man's use of freedom of speech and religion because it goes against the American value of religious free speech and tolerance. How about some consistency?"

Having the right to do something is different than it being right to do something. Criticism is not a threat to free speech.

But of course I have little sympathy towards the Muslim overreaction to this event.

Jonquil said...

"Muslims agree to stop flying planes into buildings, killing innocent people, stoning women, threatening cartoonists, and issuing fatwas against people who disagree with them!"

Tell you what. Let's have Christians agree to stop bombing people (the Basque bombers), killing women (honor killings in Brazil), and calling for the expulsion of believers (Muslims) from the United States.

That sounds impossible, doesn't it? Of course it's impossible, because "Christians" covers so very many people. There are Christians out there doing horrible, horrible things in the name of their faith, and taking pride in it. "Christian" covers so many different people, from the pacifist Society of Friends I grew up in, to the Southern Baptists, to the Catholics, to the Dominionists. You can't get all of them to agree on a cup of coffee, far less a political statement.

Absolutely the same is true of Muslims. There are Muslims -- too many Muslims -- who hate and use their religion as an excuse to murder. There are also, especially outside Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, and Pakistan millions of Muslims who are leading quiet everyday lives and are horrified by the atrocities perpetrated in the name of their faith. Those Muslims' interpretation of the Koran is quite different from the radical interpretation that gets the headlines. There are hundreds of different Islams. Those decent Muslims can't stop other Muslims from doing atrocities, any more than Christians were able to prevent Eric Rudolph from perpetrating the Atlanta Olympic bombings, or (a better parallel) the IRA from perpetrating multiple murders in the Troubles.

We can consider Muslims to be practicing an invalid faith -- just as many of us consider the Latter-Day Saints to be an invalid faith -- without lumping all of them together as one hateful object.

I was raised singing, in Sunday school, "They will know that we are Christians by our love." That's a touchstone for me.

Anonymous said...

Anon:

Great reference to Acts. I think there is another place where they burned idols.

There are 2 characteristics of that passage that are key for me.

First, it was the followers of sorcery or other religions who burned their scrolls etc. It signified someone leaving their past and religious practices. It was not an act of the apostles to show disdain for the religion. I would have more respect for a Muslim who converts and what he might do symbolically than for a person of another faith who wants to show disdain for another faith by burning their holy writings.

Second, I believe that with the history of the 20th century fresh in our mind, "Book Burning" conjures images that we do not want to associate with. That is a negative association that many people in the general public have, not Muslims. As I said, I would suspect that Muslims would be into book burning. Christians don't need to be.

The same thing could be accomplished by throwing the book in the trash.

Louis

Anonymous said...

Jonquil:

Thanks for the support on the references.

But don't put words in my mouth.

I do not look with nostalgia on any of that, and I did not say that I did. Again, I am opposed to this book burning silliness.

But, it's not because I am fearful of what Muslims will think.

That kind of thinking is what drove the U.S. Army to burn Bibles.

And if we go around trying to worry about Muslim sensiblities and we let that be the basis for what we will do or not do, then we'll be tied up with Muslim sensibilities until the cows come home.

I would rather do what I do for the glory of Christ and in kindness and be done with it. That is the proper test for Christians.

Of course I am concerned what people think. But being overly concerned, especially when dealing with a group of super-sensitive people, puts one in a constant state of defensiveness. And it never brings the super-sensitive around, anyway.

I mean what is there to say about a people who are compelled to burn buildings, commit mayhem and murder over a cartoon?

One can't ever be sensitive enough to please people like that.

Louis

Darby Livingston said...

Let me clarify, Steven. I think what this man plans to do is downright foolish and needlessly provocative. However, I wouldn't think it foolish if he was a recently converted Muslim who decided to burn his own Koran and invited other recently converted Muslims to join him.

But I also think it's foolish for Christians to immediately jump on the tolerance bandwagon and bash this man for burning what Franklin Graham called a "sacred text."

While Jesus never called his followers to violence, he certainly didn't call them to tolerance either. For goodness sakes, he said he came to tear apart households!

Darby Livingston said...

This quote helps clarify my comments.

Obama said this concerning the mosque at ground zero:

"This is America, and our commitment to religious freedom must be unshakable.... I will not comment on the wisdom of making a decision to put a mosque there."

Why isn't he saying the same thing concerning this Florida Pentacostal? He has no problem commenting on this man's religious freedom.

B Nettles said...

I thought that the writings of Moses (the Torah)and the sayings of Jesus (the Injil) and the writings of David were holy books. Why isn't burning them offensive to true Muslims?

My suspicion is that hatred of America is more important than their religious beliefs. Plus they don't really know the Quran. Kind of like a lot of people who call themselves Christians don't know the Bible.

I am disappointed that Gen. Petreus chose to mouth off, buying into the hypocrisy of book burning. Or maybe he was forced to issue a statement.

Jonquil said...

"I mean what is there to say about a people who are compelled to burn buildings, commit mayhem and murder over a cartoon?"

I say that they are a small fragment of an enormous number of decent people trying to live their lives. I think most of the people who read this blog do not believe that all anti-abortion activists should be judged by the murderers who act in their name.

Why should we be tender of Muslim sensibilities? Because we are fighting a war in Muslim countries, and many of our enemies are, successfully, telling the countryside that we are fighting against Islam itself, not against assassins and murderers. We cannot afford to make that lie truth. We cannot afford to have the man in the hills in Pakistan believe that the American soldier comes to destroy his faith.

As to Jesus calling us to tolerance, I'm going to go back to Exodus:

"You shall not wrong a sojourner or oppress him, for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt." Along those exact same lines, we remember the martyrdom of Christians in Rome, their persecution for their heretical (to Romans) religious beliefs; we remember all the martyrdoms that followed those down the ages. We must not wrong the sojourner or oppress him.

Steven Stark said...

Jesus also said to turn the other cheek, which could be interpreted as tolerance. I think there are mixed messages in Scripture - or at least ambiguous ones that require a lot of discernment.

Perhaps "tolerance" is not as good as "mutual respect."

Scott said...

Wade writes, "CNN reported that that the Bibles were "burned" in order to satisfy the demands of Muslim authorities who were deeply offended that copies of the official sacred book of Christianity, printed in the local language of the Afghans and read by U.S. soldiers fluent in Pashto, were allowed into the country. The burning of the Bibles in Afghansitan was approved by the U.S. government, lauded by the Afghan Muslims and seemed to satiate the anger of those Muslims deeply offended at Bible reading on Arab network television."

However, the CNN report that is linked above says, "This decision came to light recently, after the Al Jazeera English network aired video of a group prayer service and chapel sermon that a reporter said suggested U.S. troops were being encouraged to spread Christianity." and "The military says a soldier at Bagram received the Bibles and didn't realize he wasn't allowed to hand them out. In the Al Jazeera video, which shows the Bibles at the prayer service, an unnamed soldier says members of his church raised money for them."

There is no mention of Pashto speaking soldiers being shown reading the Pashto Bible, instead the concern is that American soldiers passing out Pashto Bibles to Afghans, and the concern that US soldiers were trying to convert Afghans.

What CNN (and the onenewsnow) reports is very different than what you say.

Darby Livingston said...

"Perhaps "tolerance" is not as good as "mutual respect."

Or maybe "speak the truth in all of its exclusive offensiveness and then let your opponents kill you for the glory of God" like the couple in Wade's previous post.

Anonymous said...

Jonquil:

Another good point you have made.

Not all Muslims are bad people.

I would confirm that by experience all of the Muslims whom I have met in the U.S. are fine, friendly people.

But, again, no one has said that they are not.

But I don't know of a Muslim country that I would want to live in, as a free man (setting aside my faith completely).

The system of laws, the subjection of women, the treatment of independent thought, the disallowance (and imposition of the death penalty, I believe) of conversions of other faiths, not allowing the presence of religious texts of other faiths, that is present in Muslim societies and countries is staggering.

There is no equivalence in countries that are predominantly Christian.

If there is a country that is predominanlty populated by and governed by Christians that is anything compared to what is found all throughout the Muslim world, please provide the name of that country.

Your attempt to compare the pathologies in the Muslim world and the countries that are governed by Muslims with the pathologies of a couple of other minority people groups in Spain and Brazil is really not thought through.

There is no way in the world that you would choose living in any Muslim country over Spain or Brazil.

And your comparison with the differences in Christian denominations with differences in the Muslim world is also misplaced.

Sure, Christians differ on points of doctrine. So what.

If what we were talking about was some difference between the Shia and the Sunni in some tradition or doctrine, nobody would be talking about Islam, at all.

A major problem faced at many points in the world today are the basic human rights abuses, inhumanity and violence of Muslim societies and the countries governed by Muslims.

I surely hope that your comments are just made to give some perspective and not in ignorance of this fact.

That is what people are so bothered by about Islam right now.

Louis

Anonymous said...

Jonquil:

The problem is the man in Pakistan who thinks that the Americans are there to destroy his faith is very limited in his experience and understanding and is deluded by those in and who rule his society.

We have 300,000,000 in this country. We have a free society.

The man in Pakistan will have to realize that. If he cannot, he is going to have a hard time in this world.

The religious freedom of our soldiers in another country should not be denied to comfort the man in Pakistan. If our soldiers want to read Bibles, Playboy, drive cars (women) or grill barbecue or have a beer, the man in Pakistan will just have to learn to live with it.

We should not be deliberately offensive, but we should not restrict our society or freedoms to help comfort the man in Pakistan.

Of course, what would solve all of this is that the man in Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, SA etc., since they are in the vast majority (as you seem to indicate) should simply get control of their own countries and impose reasonable standards of justice and behavior. Then we won't have to send troops over there in the first place.

Finally, surely you are not implying that we should send no missionaries to Pakistan?

The right to hear the Gospel is a fundamental right and the obligation to preach the Gospel is a command from our Lord.

By your logic, if the man in Pakistan thinks we are coming to convert him, we shoudn't go.

I know that you don't mean that.

But the point is that the importance of the mission (whether it is religious, humanitarian or military) often outweights the sensitivities of many (even the majority) of the people in a country. So, sometimes sensitivities give way to bigger issues.

To think of it, the Roman world was hostile to the Gospel. I am glad that Paul, Peter and others ignored Roman sensiblities (to worship the Emporer) and preached the Gospel anyway.

Louis

Thy Peace said...

Founders Ministries Blog [Tom Ascol] > Terry Jones, Quran burning and the way of Jesus

Jonquil said...

"The system of laws, the subjection of women, the treatment of independent thought, the disallowance (and imposition of the death penalty, I believe) of conversions of other faiths, not allowing the presence of religious texts of other faiths, that is present in Muslim societies and countries is staggering."

None of these applies to Indonesia. And most Muslim sects don't believe in imposing the death penalty for conversion; that verse is quite specifically fenced off for rare circumstances, just as stoning for adultery is fenced off. (There are supposed to be four eyewitnesses, for pity's sake!)

As to Christian insularity, I give you Ireland any time before the last ten years. If you read about it, the local priests did indeed suppress independent thought, the priesthood had equal footing with -- and often superiority over -- the police, the Church controlled state law to the extent that almost all the schools are Catholic (still true) and there was no divorce available until 1995. Young women who were seen as sexually promiscuous were sent to Catholic workhouses and often never came out -- read about the Magdalen laundries here.

I wouldn't want to live in any theocracy, period end.

Anonymous said...

Jonquil:

I was just thinking, again, about WWII.

We did essentially destroy the faith of the Japanese by the way we defeated and subjugated the Emporer to foreign rule and instituted a democracy.

I agree that it is not necessary or wise for the U.S. to do that with Islam for a variety of reasons.

But there are some aspects of the Muslim culture in those countries that are going to be tested by an international military and governmental presence.

But we shouldn't be burning our own soldiers' Bibles, don't you agree?

Louis

Jonquil said...

Louis, did you read Scott's posting? "Our own soldiers' Bibles" were Bibles that they had brought to proselytize the locals, something that was explicitly forbidden by our rules of engagement *to avoid giving the enemy ammunition*. Nobody was ripping people's personal religious books from their hands; the military was preventing soldiers from violating standing orders, using Bibles that had been sent to them by their congregations back home. (I think burning them, if that is how they were disposed of, was a blindingly crazy and offensive solution.)

Douglas Macarthur took enormous pains to preserve the Japanese state religion applying to the Emperor, and went so far as to protect the entire Royal Family from war crimes prosecution. That doesn't sound like suppressing the state religion to me.

Anonymous said...

Jonquil:

I am glad that you do not want to live in a theocracy. We are agreed on that.

Indonesia is both a good and a poor example.

It was ruled by Christians (the Dutch) for 400 years. Since around WWII, it was ruled until recently by 2 dictators - the first one, a leftist (Sukarno, I think), then a right winger (Suhartu, I think). So the governments there suppressed the exercise of Islam in a significant way.

About 85% of Indoneisa's 220 million population is Muslim, but a large number of them have Buddhism and other religions mixed in. 5% Catholic, 5% Protestant.

Within the last few years 500,000 Muslims gathered in the Capitol to chant for the death of Christians and the burning of churches in the country.

But you are right, it is not as bad as the birthplace of Islam - the Middle East.

Wouldn't you rather live under the laws of and in the community of Ireland, than Indoneisa?

When was the last time 500,000 gathered in Belfast for the killing and burning of the Churches in Ireland?

Louis

Jonquil said...

Louis, the military mission is not going to succeed if it is seen as a Christian mission. It's that simple -- we cannot win this war if it's a Crusade. Furthermore, it is not the duty of the American military to convert the unenlightened; far from it, it is a violation of their duty.

There is a difference between individual Christians going to Pakistan as missionaries and Christian members of the military acting as missionaries. Members of the military swear (or affirm) oaths that restrict many of their freedoms, including their freedom of speech. I am not saying "nobody anywhere should minister to Muslim countries"; I'm saying that members of the American military should not, because that is not only not their job, not only a violation of the Constitution, but will get in the way of doing their job.

In any case, burning the sacred text of Muslims is no way to win hearts and souls. It is an act of hate, not an act of the Gospel.

Jonquil said...

Louis,
I don't think it's fair to Wade to sidetrack his journal on to whether the sins committed in the name of Islam are worse than those committed in the name of Christianity. Wade asked, why wasn't there equivalent outrage about burning Bibles in Afghanistan, not what are Jonquil's feelings about Islam. I got caught up in replying to commenters, not in Wade's question. Mea culpa.

Anonymous said...

Jonquil:

Yes, Macarthur, per U.S. policy, did not have the Emperor tried or destroyed.

But neither did he allow the Emperor to maintain his prewar status, which was religious in nature.

A significant portion of the Emperor's religious significance was and had to be destroyed by the war.

The biggest thing was that the Emperor answered to Macarthur.

I really don't think that we are that far apart on this.

As to the Bibles, if they were Bibles belonging to the soldiers in a language that they themselves read, they should be able to possess those Bibles.

The soldiers should not be allowed to Proseletyze, and they should be brought up on charges if they did that. But confiscating Bibles from soldiers is not proper.

I think that we were too sensitive toward Afghan sensibilities after we won that war (we won the war, now I am not sure we can win the peace).

When the new consitution was written, it provided that Afghanistan was a Muslim nation.

I understood why Bush and the U.S. did that.

But I would have insisted that nothing be in the constitution like that, and that the constitution provided for freedom on religion. (I am speaking from memory here, someone can look this up and correct me).

The other thing that I would have done was allowed Corkeys and some other barbecue restaurants to set up in Afghanistan.

If they did not make it for lack of customers - so be it. Free market and all.

But I think that any people deprived of barbecue are truly impoverished!

btw - word verification - "pigness" - I am not kidding.

Louis

Anonymous said...

Jonquil:

Good point. I'll leave off here.

But you are a well spoken and very smart person.

I truly enjoyed blogging with you, and hope we get to chat again.

Louis

blogitch said...

The "but they did it to us first!" argument is straight from the school yard. I'm surprised you raise it.

FBC Jax Watchdog said...

Sorry to play Thy Peace, and my apologies for promoting my own blog, but this issue will ultimately be one of free speech.

The Sheriff's department painted over a church's sign advertising the event. They are intimidating the pastor by saying he will have to pay tens of thousands of dollars for security...security for what? From those who want to shut down his free speech or harm him?

Unbelievable.

Read my article:

What is More Dangerous: Burning Qurans or the Local Sheriff Trying to Stop It?

Steven said...

In response to Anonymous: Indonesia and Turkey

Both have secular constitutions with Muslim-majority populations. Until the EU's recent rejection of Turkey's bid to join the union, it was really making a lot of progress as a society. That setback predictably created some blowback from conservative elements, which captured the media's attention.

Likewise, the world's largest Muslim society is Indonesia, which is also a religiously-plural secular democracy whose constitution has been successfully amended several times. In the aftermath of a total economic collapse in the late 90s, the end of a 60 years of dictatorship following Dutch colonialism, and the devastating tsunami, some extremists tried to capitalize on national suffering but have largely failed. No national Muslim political party even espouses shari'ah in its platform any longer. On the whole it is not a bad place to live, and a city like Jakarta can rival the glitz, conspicuous consumption, and pollution of most any Western city.

Can you find violent extremists in both places? Sure, but these societies are socio-politically and religiously as far away from places like Pakistan and Afghanistan as Brazil is. And they are overwhelmingly Muslim.

I'd take my chances in Indonesia and Turkey over the levels of violence plaguing Catholic-majority nations like Brazil and Mexico currently.

I am not sure Spain is a fair comparison. Perhaps a more interesting comparison (though still not fair in terms of development) would be France where you have freedom, but the version of secularism that underwrites that freedom is blatantly antagonistic to public religious expression regardless of religious affiliation (Christian, Muslim, etc.).

Karen in OK said...

Louis,
All your comments were great, except you lost me on the one that soldiers in Afghanistan should have had charges brought against them for proselytizing.
I don't see that at all.

Gram said...

wade, fodder for future post: first baptist dallas jeffress recent comments re: islam and the resulting fallout (dallas morning news columnist steve blow).

Kevin M. Crowder said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kevin M. Crowder said...

None of this matters, folks. Looks like Obama, the destroyer of freedom, is going to step in and ban the burning.

What a stupid president!

That Jeremy Guy said...

Great question Wade. It exposes the blatant hypocrisy of our media.

Anonymous said...

Karen in OK:

I believe it is against the military rules for soldiers to try and convert persons in an occupied or war zone. If a soldier violates the rules, he/she should be prosecuted for a violation of the rules.

That's what I was thinking.

Louis

Anonymous said...

Steven:

Sure, there is violence in Brazil and Mexico - because of poverty, not religious intolerance.

Go to Brazil, Mexico, France, and lots of other places, and you will not see the issues that plague the Muslim world.

I have had friends that have been to and lived in Turkey. Compared to the rest of the Muslim world, it is tolerant. Compared to tolerant countries, it is not religiously tolerant.

Indonesia is an interesting place for many reasons. They have only had a shot at Muslim rule for the last 10 or 20 years. The Dutch and the dictators kept that from happening before that.

I still say that wherever a half a million Muslims are able to assemble and chant to kill all the Christians and burn all the churches is not a place I would want to live. One would be much better off in Brazil or Mexico from religious standpoint.

I know lots of people who have retired to Mexico, and a few to Brazil.

I don't know anyone dying to get into Indonesia.

Just seems like common wisdom to me.

Louis

Anonymous said...

Great question, Wade.

There have also been a few good answers that point to the difference between how the church and Christians respond differently to bigotry, hate, and threats. That's as it should be. It is not, imo, a smart move to burn Qurans.

However, the response from our President and the media begs the question of how they can be so blatantly biased in favor of another religion besides Christianity. Their hypocrisy in demanding the right of freedom of speech for Muslims and everyone else while intimidating a Christian who is asserting his right to burn a Quran is as clear as a double-rainbow. What does it mean? It means that we are battling not against flesh and blood but rather against spiritual powers. And we should all remember that, no matter what government we have, no matter what media we have, no matter how divided the church may or may not be, and no matter how desperate the situation may appear, JESUS WINS!!!! HE is LORD!!! They may burn a book that has the Word of God printed in it; but no one, anywhere, will ever destroy God's Word, ever.

The Quran, on the other hand. Well......

Christiane said...

I just heard on the news that the idiot in Florida has 'cancelled' the burning of islamic holy books.

He gave as his reason 'protests from all over the world'.


I posted last night before learning all the known facts about the situation involving the Florida church sending Bibles to a soldier.
I can't help wondering, though, if all of the brouhaha was 'planned' to get a public reaction.
I'm sorry for feeling this way, but I no longer take everything at face value, especially when our military is demeaned. They have been placed 'in the middle' by proselytizers and by the extremes of left and right. Our military has its hands full sorting out how to keep our troops safe. They don't need the harassment of proselytizers and pot-stirrers.

God protect our troops from all the forces who would put them in harms way, either out of ignorance, or contempt.

Lydia said...

"hy should we be tender of Muslim sensibilities? Because we are fighting a war in Muslim countries, and many of our enemies are, successfully, telling the countryside that we are fighting against Islam itself, not against assassins and murderers."

This is probably the most misunderstood concept out there and it is a dangerous position. We ARE fighting Islam. There are moderate Muslims but there is NOT a moderate Islam.

It is NOT a religion. It is an ideology that comes complete with it's own government of laws that conflict with our Bill of Rights.

Does no one understand that it is considered a virtue to lie and deceive infidels?

Why are so many people willing to tolerate intoleration? I do not get it. What about Muslim women?

As bin Laden said, more Muslims must know the Quran so they will do their duty.

What did Churchill say about appeasers? They appease so the alligator will eat them last.

A HUGE deal is made about the Koran burning but not so big deal about the stonings and beheadings. I fear that is becoming so normal and expected, we simply dismiss this without a thought. It is just what they do and if we are nice enough, they will stop. Just don't provoke them. Problem is, they will just keep redrawing the "provoke line in the sand" until we allow a variation of Sharia law here.

The Afghani's who work for a mission org I am involved with would not dare own a Pashto bible
for fear of being assassinated. But many of them learned enough English while in refugee camps during the Taliban they can read it in English. But they still hide it and are in constant fear.

Muslims HATE freedom. It goes against everything they have been taught or believe. They will take advantage of it in the West for many reasons but they despise it.

It is almost impossible for us to get our heads around the mindset. And it will come back to bite us. They are in bondage to evil and we must boldly state the truth of Jesus Christ to them. They actually respect boldness.

Someday, we are going to wake up and realize that Islam, as presented in their Holy Scriptures, cannot coexist with our civil liberties. But by then, it will be too late.

Our government deals with Mormons and polygamy but will it deal with the civil liberties of Islamic women?

Steven said...

Louis,

I agree with your poverty point, but I think you downplay how difficult it is to disentangle various social factors that shape a society.

I have lived in Indonesia and studied interfaith relations and theology alongside Muslims and Christians at the country's premier public research university. The form of Islam that took root in Indonesian soil was Sufism, which blended very naturally with Java's indigenous mysticism. It makes for a very tolerant and syncretic form of Islam. I felt completely welcome and encouraged by my Muslim friends and professors even when we disagreed strongly. I also spoke to many Muslims who are not enamored with American culture and view it as profane and morally debased. Hard not to disagree with that if you consider the sorts of things we export around the world.

They have rejected shari'ah, but they are concerned not to follow the moral pattern of our nation.

I honestly doubt a half million protested. For example, it's notoriously difficult to determine attendance at rallies on the national mall in Washington, even though the space is confined and the National Park Service has spent a lot of time (and money) on scientific measures. How would you count the crowd density of a spur of the moment protest in an ill-defined space in Jakarta. I just don't trust reporters' attendance calculations any more than I'd trust a Baptist preacher's estimate of a Sunday morning congregation. The extremists that want to burn churches and so forth are a very small percentage of the society. Many live not in the cities but in the rural villages that are desperately poor and not modernized and Suharto proved they were easily manipulated toward violent ends.

Have a good night.

natamllc said...

Christ teaches two understandings about the evil forces at work on earth and in the heavens who bring about evil wars.

This Pastor's approach is not one of them.

This matter has now come to us by virtue of the General's remarks broadcast over the world media stream followed on by other Military and Civilian leadership.

Here is the ugly side of wisdom:

Psa 46:8 Come, behold the works of the LORD, how he has brought desolations on the earth.
Psa 46:9 He makes wars cease to the end of the earth; he breaks the bow and shatters the spear; he burns the chariots with fire.


Yes, see it? It's right there??

How does Christ intend on causing wars to cease to the end of the earth? He breaks the bow and shatters the spear. He burns the chariots with fire.

Modern day translation. He causes the Coalition of NATO Forces, my firstborn son is one of them, to occupy Afghanistan, well equipped to destroy all the weapons of war the Taliban have and are being supplied. How? With weapons of war!

Now, the other view of this ugly mess:

Luk 22:31 "Simon, Simon, behold, Satan demanded to have you, that he might sift you like wheat,
Luk 22:32 but I have prayed for you that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned again, strengthen your brothers."
Luk 22:33 Peter said to him, "Lord, I am ready to go with you both to prison and to death."
Luk 22:34 Jesus said, "I tell you, Peter, the rooster will not crow this day, until you deny three times that you know me."
Luk 22:35 And he said to them, "When I sent you out with no moneybag or knapsack or sandals, did you lack anything?" They said, "Nothing."
Luk 22:36 He said to them, "But now let the one who has a moneybag take it, and likewise a knapsack. And let the one who has no sword sell his cloak and buy one.
Luk 22:37 For I tell you that this Scripture must be fulfilled in me: 'And he was numbered with the transgressors.' For what is written about me has its fulfillment."
Luk 22:38 And they said, "Look, Lord, here are two swords." And he said to them, "It is enough."
Luk 22:39 And he came out and went, as was his custom, to the Mount of Olives, and the disciples followed him.
Luk 22:40 And when he came to the place, he said to them, "Pray that you may not enter into temptation."
Luk 22:41 And he withdrew from them about a stone's throw, and knelt down and prayed,
Luk 22:42 saying, "Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done."
Luk 22:43 And there appeared to him an angel from heaven, strengthening him.
Luk 22:44 And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.
Luk 22:45 And when he rose from prayer, he came to the disciples and found them sleeping for sorrow,
Luk 22:46 and he said to them, "Why are you sleeping? Rise and pray that you may not enter into temptation."
Luk 22:47 While he was still speaking, there came a crowd, and the man called Judas, one of the twelve, was leading them. He drew near to Jesus to kiss him,
Luk 22:48 but Jesus said to him, "Judas, would you betray the Son of Man with a kiss?"
Luk 22:49 And when those who were around him saw what would follow, they said, "Lord, shall we strike with the sword?"
Luk 22:50 And one of them struck the servant of the high priest and cut off his right ear.
Luk 22:51 But Jesus said, "No more of this!" And he touched his ear and healed him.


Here with these two views we can see both sides of this thorny issue!

We are there in Afghanistan to prosecute a war to bring about the end of this evil war being waged against our civil freedoms.

Here at home and for the homeland, though, should we not put down our sword, or, another way of saying it, we should not burn Qur'ans in the U.S. as a protest to the evils and evil forces of war against us?

LivingDust said...

I've always wondered what God would say about Mohammad and his "religion". If Jesus is the only way to the Father and His shed blood is the only hope for sins atoned and our pardon, then obviously Islam must be a fraud and deception. But why are American Christians so frightened to speak frankly about the spiritual danger of Islam. Are we now that gutless. Surely the Apostle Paul would bury a hatchet squarely in the forehead of the spiritual claims of Islam.

david b mclaughlin said...

When people do things offensive towards christianity I never get too worked up. I see it as a bit of a job description (not that I ignore our religious freedoms of course).

However, when christians do stupid things I feel it is important to speak out and either help them see the error of their ways or help others see that all christians are not idiots.

shibboleth
dm

jimmyd said...

Wade, just wanted to add a thought or two. I'm an Army chaplain and my understanding is that the Bibles were sent from the US to a soldier for the purpose of distributing to local Afghans, which is not allowed by military policy in that area of operations. I do not think that the Bibles were confiscated from the personal possession or use of our troops. In addition, the Bibles were burned instead of being sent back because the story was in the media and had gone worldwide and, in the event the church sent them back to Afghanistan and they ended up in the hands of locals, it might appear we had distributed them since it was known they had been in our possession. This could have created a backlash which might impede our mission there. If churches/ministries wish to send literature, I recommend checking with a chaplain at a nearby military installation to find out what is allowed and most useful. Thanks for your blog and keep up the good work!

Anonymous said...

Dear Robin Michelle,
You said " For those who say "Christians don't kill their enemies" Check history...or even current events around the world."

I am a missions pastor and I travel a bit working in mainly Muslim places. I think your statement is incorrect, at least from my perspective. What I see when I travel in muslim areas are Christians not only bringing the love of Christ and the gospel, but also bringing food, health care and much more.

The response I have seen and heard personally from Muslims is that the Christians care more about them than their own people. We had this response recently in Africa when we provided supplies to a much needed village and also in the Mountains of NW Africa.

You may be speaking from experience that I am not aware of. I realize Christians are not perfect and can be stupid as in the case of this Fl pastor.

But I would be curious to see what you are referring to as a recent evidence of true Christians carrying out violence against other religions. I am not foolish about the sin that Christians are capable of committing, I see it everyday in the church I serve. But neither do I think we jump on the bandwagon of those who try to paint Christianity as the same as Islam when it comes to violence.

Ken

Wade Burleson said...

JimmyD,

Thanks for the clarification. The problem was proselytising Muslims.

I could have been clearer by pointing out that it is fine for Muslims in America to proselytise Americans, but offensive for Muslims if Christians attempt to proselytise Muslims.

That's why the burned the Bibles in Afghanistan.

I realize that "policy" states soldiers should not speak of religion in foreign countries, but it seems the prohibition is for any American (think aid workers) to share their faith with a Muslim.

Anonymous said...

Steven:

Thanks for the great comment and good info.

I had read that the Islam in Indonesia was different, and thus, more peaceful, but your summary is succinct and makes sense.

The 500,000 was a press account I had seen. You are right about that, too. There are always disputes about those counts.

Take care.

Louis

Jake Barker said...

Lydia,
You hit the nail on the head with your response to this post.
"Does no one understand that it is considered a virtue to lie and deceive infidels?"
I was a team leader for a computer company a couple of years ago. Some of the team were Muslims from India by way of Canada. One, on certain days, Fridays would wear a paper tag over the company required name tag we all wore on our shirts. His would say "mufti". I called him aside and asked him point blank if he had changed his name. His excuse was that was his family name, I again point blank called him a liar. That mufti was the title of a muslim holy man and that he could no longer wear that name and remain on my team. He complied meekly. Some days later he attempted to present Islam to me and in return I presented the true Gospel to him. Hopefully some of it sunk in.

Arnie Adkison said...

Many have said this already, but it seems to me that the issue in question is less about burning the Bibles as a statement that Bibles are evil, but destroying the Bibles because they violated military policy. If a box of Bibles in local dialects were shipped to a soldier, I think it is a fair assumption that those Bibles were intended to be used to proselytize indigenous people, something the military prohibits. No one's personal Bible they brought with them was destroyed. I seriously doubt any American military personal needs EXCLUSIVELY to have a Bible in these languages, so as many others have said, I think it's a different situation altogether.

Robin Michelle said...

Ken,

crusades,Inquisition, Ireland, ethnic cleansing in certain parts of the world, Nigerian children labeled as witches then murdered, American Evangelist behind the anti gay laws in Uganda (where a law was proposed that would make being gay a capital offense)

Anytime someone even remotely comes against Christians or God- they get death threats. The murder of Tiller. The guy who was just today arrested for planning a bomb attack on an abortion clinic. Those who are issuing death treats and violence against the proposed Islamic community center and the people involved. The violence we see against Muslims, Threats against our president because people think he's 'anti christian Muslim antichrist...or whatever', My gay friends being constantly harassed, some even beaten into ICU- or grave.

The hate and violence against illegals. The disservice we do to our poor and needy through our politics. The "I have mine, screw you" attitude some try to pass off as 'Christian.'

As a Christian, I feel that I must make a strong stand against these things. These do not represent Christ at all, but some people do commit these acts of violence- and distasteful things -and try to apply 'God's' name to them. Those of us who stand for REAL Christianity must take a stand and drown out the insanity!

We can't decry the atrocities of another religious group while ignoring or downplaying those committed from our own.

The greatest command given to us is LOVE and it is about danged time we started to show it a little and start speaking out against those who pervert the name and mission of Christ.

LivingDust said...

Robin,

Jesus of Nazareth used a whip and tore into the money changers in the Jerusalem Temple court. Jesus of Nazareth publically blasting the Jewish religious leaders calling them a "brood of vipers", among other things. Jesus of Nazareth said in Luke - "Do you suppose that I came to grant peace on earth? I tell you, no, but rather division;" What do you suppose Jesus would say to us about a group who boldly preaches that His death on the cross was of no consequence, that his shed blood was of no benefit in the remission of sins and that he really had no role in the salvation of mankind? Yes, he would tell us to love them and pray for them, but he would also warn us about them because it is they who truly "pervert the name and mission of Christ".

Anonymous said...

Robin, Do you think those planning murder and violence are true followers of Christ?

Ken

Robin Michelle said...

No, but they claim to be.

Many self proclaimed Christians support these things- even whole churches do. You can bet your sweet bippy that there will be Koran burnings all over today at various churches. People were happy and supportive when Tiller was murdered, Pastors call for the death of our president from the pulpit, and say that we must call for the execution of gays.

This is the image many have of Christianity because we have allowed the psychos to be the vocal majority. We brush these actions off by saying "Oh they are not REAL Christians" then leave at at that.

Those of us who follow wha Christ actually taught should stand up against these people and WE must become the vocal majority. We sure as heck should not allow these psychos to take over our country. We would be indistinguishable from the Muslim countries.

Do you think the radical Muslims represent the whole?

Robin Michelle said...

Living dust, you don't think those who commit acts of violence against others while trying to attach the name of Jesus to it is a perversion of his teachings?

Really?

Where would Jesus be.....Hanging out at the human rights ball - an event put on by the local gay community- or out with the protesters yelling that they are all going to Hell?

Would Jesus shrug off murder and bombings? What would he burn?

John Wylie said...

Where ever Jesus would be He would be calling on people to repent. Jesus did not eat with the tax collectors and sinners because He was cool with them. Nor was He cool with the Pharisees who could not see their own unrighteousness.

"When Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of the physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." (Mark 2:17)

I don't believe Jesus would be at the local gay event if that event were sanctioning homosexuality. If you will recall the tax collectors and sinners gathered around Jesus for the purpose of hearing His teaching.

"Then drew near unto him all the publicans and sinners for to hear him." (Luke 15:1)

Lydia said...

"Do you think the radical Muslims represent the whole?"

No, I don't. But I also know their holy books affirm the violence as in killing infidels to please their god whereas our New Covenant does not.

So, in other words, there are moderate Muslims but there is no moderate Islam.

david b mclaughlin said...

Robin,
What would Jesus burn? That's awesome. If it's ok with you I'll use that. (Of course I'm sure some people will happily answer-those dirty sinners!)

Would Jesus be at a gay event if it was endorsing homosexuality? I bet he would if he were reaching out to somebody. Sometimes I don't think we understand grace at all. (And yes I understand the balance of grace and truth.) We are so concerned about being militant and taking a stand that we forget to see the heart.

John Wylie said...

Jesus would be addressing sin. The thing that gets me the most is that people actually believe that Jesus would march for gay rights and other social causes. He would preach the gospel and call for repentance.

Lydia said...

"Where would Jesus be.....Hanging out at the human rights ball - an event put on by the local gay community- or out with the protesters yelling that they are all going to Hell?"

So, the choices are hanging out at the human rights ball or yelling they are going to hell?

How about what Jesus told his disciples when he sent them out to preach the Gospel:

"13 If the household is worthy, let your peace come upon it. But if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. 14 And whoever will not receive you nor hear your words, when you depart from that house or city, shake off the dust from your feet. 15 Assuredly, I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city." Matthew 10

No hanging around or yelling seems to be required.

Christiane said...

Hi ROBIN MICHELLE,

I have always seen the similarities between extremists-fundamentalists, whether they be 'Christian' (?) or Muslim (?).

There will always be those who attempt to 'hijack' a faith for their own purposes. And they will always have a 'ready-made' group of like-minded followers, whose own proclivities towards extremism are rewarded by stereotyping, intolerance, and abuse of others.

Those who realize this, disagree with it, and remain silent are in collusion with it, through the action of their silence.

LivingDust said...

Robin Michelle,

Again, my question to you is - "What do you suppose Jesus would say to us about a group who boldly preaches that His death on the cross was of no consequence, that his shed blood was of no benefit in the remission of sins and that he really had no role in the salvation of mankind?"

Here's a helpful hint - Jesus didn't shy away from confrontation.

Robin, I've got a prediction for you - There won't be one single copy of the Koran in the presence the resurrected Christ.

John Wylie said...

No, liberalism hijacks a religion because it is not honest about what the religion teaches. This is true in both Islam and Christianity.

People who reframe Jesus in this mold of someone who never confronts sin, have hijacked Christianity. Yes fundamentalism take things to extremes, but liberals deny the very basic tenets of the faith.

Lydia had it right when she said "there are moderate Muslims but there is no moderate Islam."

New BBC Open Forum said...

"Do you think the radical Muslims represent the whole?"

No, I don't. But I also know their holy books affirm the violence as in killing infidels to please their god whereas our New Covenant does not.

So, in other words, there are moderate Muslims but there is no moderate Islam.


This is one of the best commentaries I've read on the real issue at stake here.

Celestial Junk >> Why the Peaceful Majority is Irrelevant

And the follow-up which provides some good food for thought:

Celestial Junk >> Why the Peaceful Majority Might be Dangerous

Robin Michelle said...

Living dust, I am addressing one issue, why are you trying to make it sound I am saying something I am not even addressing?

There are many ways to pervert the teachings of Jesus. One would to commit violence in the name of Christianity, another would be to deny the power of Christ's sacrifice.

Are you saying that violence does NOT pervert the teachings of Christ?

I also never said Jesus is/would be cool with sin....He sure as heck would not be out 'protesting' and shouting people down, though.

I think Jesus would, in fact, march for social causes. It is odd to me that people think they can oppress others because of their personal religious beliefs. Jesus never made people follow him or 'live right' He never tried to prevent those who rejected him from their lives, either.

LivingDust said...

Robin Michelle,

The Pastor who threatened to burn the Koran did no violence. No American Christians have committed acts of violence against any Muslim in America that I re-call. However, the followers of the "religion of peace" around the world did in fact threaten to kill Americans wherever they could be found if Pastor Jones burned their "holy" book. Yes, I believe that the violence employed by Muslims (car bombs, suicide bombers, IED's, death threats) perverts the teachings of Christ. I would encourage you to consult with some folks from France, England and Sweden if you want to get understanding of what Islamic immigrants resort to when they don't get their way in their host country. Using your words - "We sure as heck should not allow these psychos to take over our country."

Christiane said...

Problem is:

the 'enemy' has won when you can't tell the psycho of 'one side' from the psycho of the 'other side'.

Look at that man that owns part of FOX NEWS who also supported the building of the mosque near ground zero:

take a good look at a 'pot-stirrer' and at those who worked for him and ask yourself what is really going on.

According to the report from Yahoo!'s John Cook, Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal, who owns part of News Corp., "has directly funded [Imam Feisal Abdul] Rauf's projects to the tune of more than $300,000."
FOX NEWS is a part of 'News Corp.' and FOX NEWS has hyped the protests big time.

Who is pulling the strings?
And playing the tune?

Beware of those that you choose to follow . . . you don't know who is behind them.

Find out. It might surprise you.

And it should.

Anonymous said...

"Why was there not a similar outrage among Muslims, the American military and the American government over the burning of Bibles in Afghanistan? "

Christiane, the above is Wade's question. Do you have any response to it?

Anonymous said...

I think both of you have offered a thoughtful answer. We seem to be attempting appeasement toward radicals who are only appeased by the absence of any other religion but their own. In the long run one wonders how effective appeasement is.

Thu Sep 09, 12:23:00 AM 2010

Wade wrote the above. Aren't you offended by such thoughts and think it is fundamentalistic? You seem to be when others say such things.

Lydia said...

From:
http://cjunk.blogspot.com/2006/02/why-peaceful-majority-is-irrelevant.html

I used to know a man whose family were German aristocracy prior to World War Two. They owned a number of large industries and estates. I asked him how many German people were true Nazis, and the answer he gave has stuck with me and guided my attitude toward fanaticism ever since.

“Very few people were true Nazis” he said, “but, many enjoyed the return of German pride, and many more were too busy to care. I was one of those who just thought the Nazis were a bunch of fools. So, the majority just sat back and let it all happen. Then, before we knew it, they owned us, and we had lost control, and the end of the world had come. My family lost everything. I ended up in a concentration camp and the Allies destroyed my factories.”

We are told again and again by “experts” and “talking heads” that Islam is the religion of peace, and that the vast majority of Muslims just want to live in peace. Although this unquantified assertion may be true, it is entirely irrelevant. It is meaningless fluff, meant to make us feel better, and meant to somehow diminish the specter of fanatics rampaging across the globe in the name of Islam.

The fact is, that the fanatics rule Islam at this moment in history. It is the fanatics who march. It is the fanatics who wage any one of 50 shooting wars world wide. It is the fanatics who systematically slaughter Christian or tribal groups throughout Africa and are gradually taking over the entire continent in an Islamic wave. It is the fanatics who bomb, behead, murder, or honor kill. It is the fanatics who take over mosque after mosque. It is the fanatics who zealously spread the stoning and hanging of rape victims and homosexuals. The hard quantifiable fact is, that the “peaceful majority” is the “silent majority” and it is cowed and extraneous.

david b mclaughlin said...

If I had any hair I would pull it out.

Jesus could be at a gay rights event and show compassion to someone who was gay without compromising truth. Why would anyone assume we are saying otherwise?

Woman where are your accusers? Go and sin no more.

Robin Michelle said...

David,

Jesus could be at a gay rights event and show compassion to someone who was gay without compromising truth. Why would anyone assume we are saying otherwise?

This!

Jesus would SO be with the sinners instead of the self-righteous fools. His reputation was that of 'eating with sinners and prostitutes.' He spent his time with the low down, the down trodden, and the undesirable.

People have such messed up thinking when it comes to relating to those we regard as sinners.

Robin Michelle said...

oh and ? No American Christians have committed acts of violence against any Muslim in America

Seriously? Try talking to an actual Muslim that lives in the US.

No, you can't play the "they were not real Christian" card. Just look at this very thread and all the nasty comments about Islam.

Yes, there are serious issues with Islam, yes the nutters are running the asylum.....but do you have the slightest clue what the nutters of Christians want if they were to gain control? We'd be practically indistinguishible from Muslim nations.

John Wylie said...

"Woman where are your accusers? Go and sin no more."

My point exactly, no matter who Jesus was talking to He confronted their sin. His message was the same whether He was speaking to the self righteous or to the ones who knew they weren't righteous. His message was repent and place their faith in Him.

Jesus may indeed attend a gay rights march, but He wouldn't be there marching for gay rights. He would be calling people to repentance and faith in Him.

Lydia said...

Why the Peaceful majority is dangerous:

Mubarka is a Canadian born woman of Pakistani parents. She grew up in Toronto among other Canadian children and attended university where she received a degree in commerce. Today she holds a prominent position with a transportation company.

Mubarka used to be as mainstream as any Canadian young adult could be; in fact, those who met her for the first time may have been struck by her vivacious personality. Her effervescence went hand in hand with her distinct Asian beauty which she shamelessly displayed with stylish clothing including the occasional low cut top. Mubarka used to converse for hours over topics as varied as business practices to Canadian politics to contemporary music.

It comes, therefore, as a shock, when one learns what path Mubarka has recently chosen for herself. She will be wedding a Pakistani man ... a devout Muslim, whom she has never met but who was chosen for her when she was an infant. Not only that, but she has donned the Hijab for the first time in her life and is strictly observing Muslim tenets. She has chosen subservience to a man and subservience to his religion over the gender freedom offered her by the Western democracy she grew up in, and she’s done so without so much as a whimper of protest.

When asked why she has picked the life of Sharia, Mubarka simply states that it is as Muhammad would will, and that there is no greater prophet than Muhammad. When asked how she will raise her children, Mubarka makes it clear ... they will be raised as Muslims first, and Canadians second.

Hardi, is perhaps one of the most pleasant Canadian women anyone could ever meet. In her capacity as a care giver of seniors, she is gentle, loving, and incredibly patient. She laughs deliciously at the kind of comical moments that only seniors can deliver and her mood seems to be permanently stuck on happy. Hardi is, an angel.

Those who encounter Hardi for the first time will be struck not by her character, that comes later, but by the fact that she is virtually covered from head to toe by tradition Indonesian Muslim attire. She covers her entire body with colourful costume that leaves only her hands and face exposed. Hardi is devout, in fact, so devout that during Christmas any appreciation given her by way of gifting must be void of any reference to the season. Furthermore, during quiet moments when Hardi is free to discuss her Muslim faith, it becomes clear that she believes wholeheartedly in the strict observance of Sharia. For her, Islam in it’s pure non-secular form, is truth.

continued...

Lydia said...

Part 2

Both Hardi and Mubarka present us with a perplexing conundrum because they are members of what has become known as the “peaceful” Muslim majority. They don’t have a violent bone in their bodies, and are clearly law abiding and productive members of Canadian society. But, they are also both part of a very small minority within Canada where they and their fellow Muslims have very little effect on Canadian politics or on the evolution of Canadian cultural norms. What if though, Hardi and Mubarka were part of a Muslim majority where they and their co-religionists held the power?

Both women are Muslims first and Canadians second. No matter how much respect one may have for either woman’s character, there is little doubt where either would place her loyalty if faced with choosing between the Canadian traditions of liberty for all, or Sharia. There is also little doubt that if they were part of a majority, they would acquiesce to the demands of the Muslim clerical class and choose Sharia for all Canadians.

It is therefore irrelevant in the grand scheme of things whether or not Hardi or Mubarka are “good” people; most people on the planet are, no matter their religion, race, or culture. What matters in the greater sense, is that as parts of the Muslim collective, neither woman would set aside her Muslim beliefs in order to safeguard and protect the full rights of non-Muslims to live as they choose. What’s even more disturbing, is that both women have experienced the gender freedoms afforded them in Canada, yet both have voluntarily resigned themselves to the greater Muslim collective.

As long as each woman is part of a small minority within Canada, she offers Canada much; but once she becomes part of a significant minority, or heaven forbid, a majority, she becomes dangerous. Why? Because Muslims wherever they form a majority choose Islamic norms over the broader more tolerant standards of the West. If given a chance, as has been clearly demonstrated the world over, they would unravel hundreds of years of hard fought human rights gains and replace them with the medieval practices of their faith. As such, both Hardi and Mubarka are simply bit players in a monstrous and destructive Muslim vortex that would drag civilization backwards hundreds of years.

http://cjunk.blogspot.com/2009/11/why-peaceful-majority-may-be-dangerous.html

Anonymous said...

Do you think the radical Muslims represent the whole?

Of course not. RM, I understand your point and I do not totally disagree.

But my point is that this is a whole fabricated media circus designed to create two sides who fight and therefore the media gains ratings. I think we gain nothing by slamming so called "Christians" using the old crusades moniker. I usually hear that from non believers seeking to slam us as if that is really us. The crusades no more represents us that mormons.

Maybe ignoring them is best. And the ones we need to speak against are those seeking to develop ratings and a circus.

Again I work with Muslims all the time and the majority are like us seeking to live life.

RM, I am not trying to fight you but instead I wish people would quit using the crusades to attempt to slam us.

We do not need to bash so called Christians who have no evidence they are Jesus followers any more than we need to react to the media and their portrayal of radical Islam. Both are traps seeking ratings.

My point and challenge is for churches and people to quit worrying about radical Islam or non Christians and join us in Muslim countries sharing Christ.

Many will talk about crazy so called Christians or crazy muslims on blogs and few will go.

WADE: Sorry to hijack thread. I bow out.

Ken

Lydia said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ib9rofXQl6w

This is a must see if you want to be educated about Islam. It is only 8 min but show 3 things about Islam that everyone should know. And each one is completely true and folks would know if they would only do their homework.

This video is produced by a non Christian, non Jew so he cannot be accused of being a hateful fundy.

I have been trying to help people understand that Islam is an ideology that comes with it's own civil laws it must obey over the civil laws of the Western country they live in. These laws conflict with our Bill of Rights.

Christiane said...

LYDIA,

the following is sort of a rant, but don't take it personally.
I'm upset at a group that stole the name of an organization honored by the Holocaust Memorial Museum, of which I am an advocate.

there is a problem that you may not be aware of: the group which posts your video is NOT the same as the group that is honored by the Holocaust Memorial Museum.

Your video publishers are not in ANY WAY connected to the honorable group whose name they stole.
They are a German hate group that stole a name from some very honorable people and tried to pass themselves off as having some gravitas from that stolen name, as long as people didn't see through them.
Pitiful.

It's strange that they would use that name . . . the name of a group that had to fight off those who practiced the hideous ways of stereotyping, intolerance, and prejudice. Just goes to show you how vigilant you have to be, in order not to get sucked into what is a lie. Here is a reference:


MOSQUE OPPOSITION THREATENS AMERICA - Our Town - Connecticut News
Aug 23, 2010 ... These include an anti-Islam video produced by a German group known as The White Roses, which has the audacity to take its name from The White Rose, ... Zero was akin to putting a swastika next to the Holocaust museum. ...


http://blog.ctnews.com/rutgers/2010/08/23/mosque-opposition-threatens-america/

Lydia said...

Christiane, I will forgo your link but whomever the group is ….they get Islam right in the video. Not sure what your hypothesis proves…it certainly does not prove the video is wrong when facts back it up about what Islam teaches.

I know because I have done my homework.

I am also an advocate of the Holocaust Museum. And I am anti Islam. I cannot abide by a religion (ideology with it’s own civil law) that says a man can beat his wife or kill homosexuals.

Christiane said...

Very simply this:

when a group who advocates certain beliefs steal their name from another historical group who is very famous for fighting intolerance, stereotyping, and the results of these abuses,
there is an HONESTY problem;
particularly when the stealers advocate intolerance, stereotyping, etc. It is an attempted perversion of a reputation, in this case, and must be pointed out, for the sake and the memory of the original group.

BTW, have you thoroughly read the web site for the Holocaust Memorial Museum? You might want to do that before you state that you are an advocate. I think you will be VERY surprised by some of what you read there. I recommend that site for everyone, as I think we can all learn something important there that must not be forgotten in our own time.

Jonquil said...

Louis, thank you for the kind words; I enjoyed talking to you.

We are as one in the First Church of Barbecue. Although my parents, who are Texans, adhere to barbecued beef brisket. Crazy heretics! And I hear that in Memphis they barbecue sheep, I don't know *what* the world is coming to nowadays.

And my verification word is 'bible'.

Louis said...

I am coming late to the conversation, but let me offer my response to the original question. On the lack of outrage on the burning of Bibles from the U.S. military and government, I cannot speak. But as far as the lack of outrage over Bible burning from Muslims is concerned, it appears to me that the answer is simple: They act like persons unfamiliar with the love and grace of Jesus Christ because that is who they are.

I think it is unrealistic for us to expect that lost people will act like something other than what they are. My problem is with Christian people who think that the proper response to unbelievers is to treat them as they treat us.

A few days ago a lady told me that it's OK for Christians to burn Korans because Muslims burn Bibles. My reply to her: "Do we Christians want it said about us that in deciding how to behave, we intentionally followed the example of unbelievers?" I stand by that reply.

Grace and peace to all,

Louis (but not the same Louis who has offered other comments above)

david b mclaughlin said...

Robin Michelle,
You and I are on the same side.

John Wylie,
You keep saying/implying I am saying things I am not.

"Jesus may indeed attend a gay rights march, but He wouldn't be there marching for gay rights."

I didnt say he would. I just said he would show them compassion.

To stay on track-this relates to the Koran burning controversy because many christians go off and say and do things without thinking through the grace side of things just because they want to hold to the truth.

Jeff Rogers said...

In the history of the printed word...The only time books have been burned have been out of fear, not hatred.

Fear of ideas.

When one person could not answer or refute the ideas of his opponent he would seek to destroy the ideas in the fire.

I have no problem with the ideas of Islam. I can refute them easily from logic, scripture and history. I can show the ideas of the Koran to be false and passing away. I do not fear the ideas found in the Koran.

So, I do not desire to burn it.

The other problem is that soon after books are burned to squelch an idea....people are burned. And much for the same reason.

Most Christians (if not all) who have been burned at the stake throughout church history were burned for their ideas. Even heretics. But a heretical idea should be easy to refute logically and biblically so really there is no reason to burn heretics either.

Jeff

foxofbama said...

Wade:
I think you and Bruce Prescott of Norman have had some conversations before.
I am disappointed in your thinking here, a retreat from the promise you showed just last year in your participation in the Oklahoma Covenant event.
Bring Ben Cole into town and you and Bruce Prescott field a panel with a viewing of the DifferentBooksCommonword.com video.
With Prescott, Denzel Washington can show you a better way on this matter.
On another note, hope you will step out of your comfort zone and engage the Ezell NAMB discussion at SBCVoices. Voices seems to be losing its way as of late.