Christianity is about people, Islam is about rules
Jesus said in Mark 2:27 “The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath” In the eyes of the religious men of his day he had just “violated” the Sabbath by doing work on the Sabbath in healing a man. He asked if it was lawful to do good on the Sabbath. His whole ministry was to mankind (both men and women) to make them better people by having them follow the laws of God, the maker’s manual. His message did not enslave. It set people free to serve others.
The male Muslim must wear his beard a certain length and pray in a certain position and time. The Muslim woman is bound by an even more stringent set of rules. Men and women can be killed for violating these rules in societies that have ritual police. Many will say, “these are the extremists” and I will admit there are moderates and there are extremists in Islam. But where in the Christian faith the extremes are looked upon by the moderates as ones who pervert the faith, in Islam the extremists are looked upon as the solid defenders of the faith. Much of this goes back to Mohammed who can easily be diagnosed as having a terribly inferior self image.
Islam’s problem with self image and persecution complex goes back to the cult’s founder, Mohammed. When everyone did not embrace his teaching he blamed them. His early teaching was to convince people his message was true. Later he settled upon the idea of conversion to Islam being forced at the point of the sword. There have been periods when Christian leaders have lost sight of the truth and tried similar tactics but they have been aberrations, not the main line and for short times, not a standard practice. With Islam, this thinking is not an aberration.
Christianity elevates women, Islam degrades and devalues them
Many in Christianity point to the Virgin Mary as the ultimate in elevating women. I consider this only one of many examples and probably not the most important. Certainly the treatment of both the woman at the well, a six time divorce who was currently shacking up with number seven, points to Jesus’ love for mankind and that this was not limited to men.
She had a triple whammy, a divorcee, a Samaritan – the lowest form of life, and a woman – in that society a second class citizen at best. And Jesus cared about her. There was also the woman taken in adultery who he spared from a mob intent on stoning her, not by condoning her sin but by dealing with her accusers. He however told her to go and sin no more. There were also Mary and Martha whom he taught.
Paul spoke highly of several women including Priscilla who with her husband Aquila taught Apollos. Peter on the day of Pentecost stood and said, “Your sons and daughters will prophecy.” If women are treated as second class in Christianity, it is an aberration, not because of valid Christian teaching.
Under Islam the testimony of a woman is less than that of a man to the extent that if a woman accuses a man of rape and there are three women who witnessed it and will confirm it, the man’s word that he did not commit the rape is still enough to free him! And the woman will be charged with adultery and can be stoned because she has admitted to having sex outside marriage! It reduces the number of proven rapes!
This exists today and there are women who have been sentenced to be stoned within the last year on such a charge. Worse there is no outcry from the UN Commission on Human Rights on many of these things.
In some cases the representative from the country involved is on the UN Commission on Human Rights! The adage about the fox guarding the hen house comes to mind! Muslim countries allow “female circumcision” – which is really a mutilating and dangerous procedure and has no corollary to male circumcision. Where is the UN on this?
Christianity teaches forgiveness, Islam teaches retribution
Jesus said if we do not forgive one another, how can our father in heaven forgive us? That forgiveness is initially evidenced by Jesus’ statement on the cross, “Father forgive them because they know not what they do.” And it follows the faith in both word and deed down to the present. It comes down to Amish families in Pennsylvania forgiving the man who killed and wounded their children. On a different level it involves parents forgiving children, children forgiving parents, spouses forgiving each other. There is no place in Christianity for unforgiveness. If there is a practice or teaching that is not forgiveness it is false.
Islam is rife with retribution both in teaching and in deed. Honor killings of women who have “offended the family honor” and beheading people who have been taken captive certainly lead the list of examples. And they are not isolated incidents.
In both the Bible and the Koran we find the concept, “an eye for an eye.” In the Koran it is almost demanded that there be retribution.
5.45: And We prescribed to them in it that life is for life, and eye for eye, and nose for nose, and ear for ear, and tooth for tooth, and (that there is) reprisal in wounds; but he who foregoes it, it shall be an expiation for him; and whoever did not judge by what Allah revealed, those are they that are the unjust.
But if we look to the New Testament Jesus taught a higher law and that is what Christians are to follow. Note also this is reinforced by both Paul and Peter. In the Old Testament is set a limit of punishment. In the new is set a law of love.
Luk 6:29 And unto him that smiteth thee on the one cheek offer also the other; and him that taketh away thy cloke forbid not to take thy coat also.
Rom 12:17 Recompense to no man evil for evil. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.
1Pe 3:9 Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing.
Muslims visit the tomb of Mohammed because he is there
Muslims are nearly forced to travel to see the tomb of Mohammed at least one time in their life. These treks are so emotional that people are routinely killed, trampled by the crowds. It is religious fervor run amuck. If this happened at a Christian event the liberal press would have a cow. But it is Islam’s culture so it is fine. The admission of it being their culture is an indictment of the bankruptcy of the cult.
Many Christians travel to Israel to see the tomb of Jesus but the tomb is open and empty because on that first Resurrection morning an angel rolled away the stone and He arose from the dead. The only deaths I am aware of on any of these journeys have been caused by the usual accidents that result in any travel in fact some have been caused by Muslims trying to interfere with these visits. These trips are not charged with emotion. They are often quiet experiences of introspection. He suffered, bled, died, was buried, rose and ascended for me.
A person is free to accept Christ or not. Failure to accept Islam can be a death sentence.
The basis of a Christian conversion is free choice. Anything that short circuits that invalidates it. There may be occasional zealots that go beyond this but they are few and the fruit that comes from their ministry is bad.
Islam in contrast is not bashful about enforced conversions. Within the last year at least one captured reporter has confessed a conversion while in captivity – with the alternative a beheading. This is not a “ancient myth” as some would have us believe. It is here and now. He repudiated that confession shortly after his release.
A person who renounces Christianity is to be loved and prayed for. A person who renounces Islam is sentenced to death.
The scripture says to treat the one who leaves the Christian faith as a “publican and sinner.” This is an interesting phrase that is totally misunderstood because those outside the faith do not understand how a “publican and sinner” is to be treated. They are not to be sunned, mistreated or cajoled but “loved”. This may in some cases be giving them “space” and time to think.
Islam holds that anyone who renounces the faith is an infidels and can be sentenced to death. Likewise someone attempting to convert a Muslim to another faith can be killed. There is no room in Islam for a free market of ideas. One would wonder if the Muslim community were still operating out of the poor self image of Mohammed – they must feel that if allowed to chose people will not chose Islam.
A Christian is promised eternal life if they accept Christ. A Muslim is promised to be with Allah only if he dies fighting the infidel.
To the Muslim Jesus is a prophet. He is in fact considered one of the minor prophets. To the Christian Jesus is the incarnate Son of God.
This is an interesting contradiction here. In Islam Jesus is said to be a prophet but they firmly deny he is the Son of God or that he rose from the dead. Since Jesus said both that He was the Son of God and that he rose from the dead, either Islam is wrong on these points or Jesus is a liar and Islam is claiming a prophet that is a liar. It is interesting that you can’t have this one both ways.
To a Christian women are to be cherished, loved and treasured. Christianity teaches that women are to be modest. To a Muslim women are simply a source of temptation. A woman’s body is covered to prevent her from tempting Muslim men to sin. Failure to properly cover her body can result in the loss of a leg or her life. Christian men are taught to be self controlled and Christian women are taught to practice modesty willingly.
Christianity and Islam teach sexual purity. Sex outside marriage is fornication or adultery. These are to be avoided. Islam has various external ways of promoting that purity including the requirement that women be accompanied by a male relative and female circumcision, a despicable practice. Christianity places that responsibility on free choice by the individual – the same as conversion is based on free choice. One is rules and punishment, the other is self control and grace.
Other Articles by Ralph Brandt
- Casting Out Demons
- Black Hawk Down
- Being Criticed For The Gospel
- I Count All Of This As Dung
- Slicing And Dicing The Word Of God
- Blind, Bound And Going In Circles
- Because He Lives
- Academia Glossary
- Tearing A Page Out Of The Bible
- Taking A Stand Takes Courage – Even In The Church
- God Is Doing A New Thing?
- President Obama, a Victim of The Right
- Obama – Misuse of Presidential Power
- King Bo and Queen Mo
- Obama and The Supreme Court
- Manure Spreader