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Author Topic: Deal seriously with violent biblical texts, historian says  (Read 1517 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: February 17, 2012, 11:53:54 AM »

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WACO, Texas (ABP) – Before characterizing Islam as inherently violent based on selected passages in the Quran, Christians should consider violent verses in the Holy Bible, historian Philip Jenkins told a recent gathering at Baylor University.
....
Jenkins, author of books including Laying Down the Sword: Why We Can't Ignore the Bible's Violent Verses, said Christians who view violent texts in the Old Testament as irrelevant to modern faith need to "exorcise the spirit of Marcion," a second-century heretic who believed that Jesus Christ is savior but rejected the wrathful Hebrew God of the Old Testament.
....
When it comes to violent Scripture passages, Jenkins said Christians should "absorb them" -- study them within historical context, view them with humility and interpret them in light of the revelation of God in Christ -- "but never forget them."
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« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2012, 12:58:34 PM »

I've been reading the Book of Judges lately.  FWIW, I've never made any attempt to downplay my admiration for Ehud, Gideon, and Samson.
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« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2012, 01:06:54 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

I agree completely.  Folks often misconstrue the Kuran without considering the Old Testament.  We have a similar history within our own texts, and further, many Christians have in the past inappropriately justified using violence in the name of Old Testament Scripture.

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habte selassie
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« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2012, 01:17:03 PM »

I think this is right, but I also think that the violence we see in the Qur'an and in the history of Islam is a different animal than what we're dealing with in the Old Testament Scriptures. There are, of course, similarities as well, but we also have the light of Christ through which we interpret those passages. The Qur'an does no such thing.
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« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2012, 01:24:37 PM »

Is this, in any way, a new comparison?

What groundbreaking scholarship, to discover violent passages in the Old Testament.   
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« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2012, 01:28:18 PM »

Of course the OT has violence in it. However, Christ changed everything, Mohammed expanded it.

PP
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« Reply #6 on: February 17, 2012, 01:39:37 PM »

Of course the OT has violence in it. However, Christ changed everything, Mohammed expanded it.

Exactly.  Christ gave us a new and higher way; the Qur'an gets more violent as time goes on.  If one believes in a progressive revelation, common to both Christianity and Islam, then one sees a movement to peace in the former and a movement to violence in the latter.
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« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2012, 01:42:13 PM »

And they shall beat their swords into plowshares...

The lion will lie down with the lamb...

I don't remember that in the Koran.
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« Reply #8 on: February 17, 2012, 02:20:21 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

And they shall beat their swords into plowshares...

The lion will lie down with the lamb...

I don't remember that in the Koran.
Then you weren't reading carefully.There specific passages which specifically condemn violence, both against non-Muslims, and especially inter-Muslim violence.  I'm at work so I don't have the time to reference, but trust me, its there.  That being said, the Kuran, while not carrying the force of the Holy Spirit which teaches us how to fulfill the Law, none-the-less does specifically address the moral and religious wrongs of violence.  Today, radical Islamists who use violence and terrorism as a tactic, are manipulating the Kuran just as lynch mobs in the Deep South used to manipulate the Scriptures to support KKK terrorism, or the way the Crusades manipulated the Scriptures to support attacking Byzantium..

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #9 on: February 17, 2012, 02:37:09 PM »

Quote
Today, radical Islamists who use violence and terrorism as a tactic, are manipulating the Kuran just as lynch mobs in the Deep South used to manipulate the Scriptures to support KKK terrorism, or the way the Crusades manipulated the Scriptures to support attacking Byzantium
So Mohammed was a radical Muslim then correct? His hands are loaded with blood. Even after the conquest of Mecca.

Thats way different than simply misguided followers (Terrorists or the Westboro crazies).

PP
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« Reply #10 on: February 17, 2012, 02:40:26 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Quote
Today, radical Islamists who use violence and terrorism as a tactic, are manipulating the Kuran just as lynch mobs in the Deep South used to manipulate the Scriptures to support KKK terrorism, or the way the Crusades manipulated the Scriptures to support attacking Byzantium
So Mohammed was a radical Muslim then correct? His hands are loaded with blood. Even after the conquest of Mecca.

Thats way different than simply misguided followers (Terrorists or the Westboro crazies).

PP

Again, within the Kuran are specific verses which condemn violence, period.  There is really nothing more I can add without taking the time to add references, which when I get home from work I will be sure to do.

for the meantime, lets see if this helps

Quote
Clearly, the above verses can incite much animosity and subsequent violence vis-a-vis all non-Muslims. Accepted literally - and uncritically - these verses lend themselves to the unjust persecution of otherwise innocent people, whose only crime is being non-Muslim. However, a pivotal matter of linguistic importance is often overlooked: the significance and usage of the definite article, "al" (i.e., "the"), which precedes the various disparaging Arabic words - kafirun, mushrikun - that describe non-believers in the Quran and which are often translated as "non-believers," "infidels," "idolaters," or "polytheists." Furthermore, in Arabic, the definite article is physically attached to the word it describes.

See below:

    Quran: {The infidels are your sworn enemies Sura 4:101}
    Quran {Prophet, make war on the infidels Sura 66: 9
    Quran {Never be a helper to the disbelievers Sura 28:86}

The exact Arabic expression in these verses - indeed, in every verse that talks of the non-believer - is "Al-Kaferrin" or "Al-la-dhina Kafaru." The use of "Al-" or "Al-la-dhina" limits the verse (and thus commandment) to 1) a specific time and place in historyand 2) a specific group of people who were obstacles to the establishment of Islam in its nascent phase. It is these two factors that caused these verses to be revealed. Had the intentions of the Quran been to extend the application of these verses in perpetuity, it would have used the expression "Man Kafar," rather than "Al-Kafereen" or "Al-La-dhina Kafaru". The former, "Man Kafar," literally means any one who does not believe in God; while the latter, "Al-Kafereen," - the infidels - denotes a specific group of people: they who fought Prophet Mohamed in the early stages of Islam.

Moreover, the overriding principle which must ultimately guide our understanding of these verses is the constant Quranic reminder that good Muslims do not initiate violence against others so long as the latter do not provoke hostilities.

    Quran 2:190 Fight in the cause of God those who start fighting you, but do not transgress limits (or start the attack); for God loveth not transgressors.

Indeed, according to other verses, even if a Muslim deemed someone an infidel, according to the Quran, he is still obligated to:

1. Behave with courtesy :
Consider, for instance, the following verse, which is supposed to instruct Muslims as to how they should deal with non-Muslims in the midst of hostilities (such as war): 9:6 And if any of the Idolatries (who are fighting you) seeks thy protection, grant him protection, so that he might [be able to] hear the word of God [from thee]; and thereupon convey him to a place where he can feel secure:
If Muslims are to behave with such clemency and magnanimity vis-a-vis the infidel during times of war and conflict, how much more should be expected of their interactions with non-Muslims during times of peace?

2. Respect his freedom of choice to be a "Disbeliever" - as this is a right bestowed upon humanity by God:
Quran 18:29 proclaims, "The truth is from your Lord": it is the free will of any person to believe (in God) or to be an Infidel (Un believer).

3. Even if a Muslim should be convinced that someone is a non-believer, still he must accept that his fate is in the hands of God alone, since no one human can condemn another - this must be left to the judgment of God.
Quran 88:25-26 for behold, unto (ONLY) Us (means God) will be their return, Then it will be for (ONLY) Us to Judge (humans).
22:17 Those who believe (in the Qur'an), those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Sabians (can mean an ancient religion or people with no specific religion), Christians, Magians, and Polytheists,- God will judge between them on the Day of Judgment: for God (alone) is witness of all things.

The significance of the definite article ("al") or the substantive pronoun ("al-la dhina") which confines the aforementioned verses to a specific time and place - that is, the past, history - as well as against a specific people (i.e., the polytheists of the Arabian peninsula), is also key to understanding those many other verses that are often cited to incite violence against non-Muslims:
1- The infidels are your sworn enemies Sura 4:101
2- Make war on The infidels who dwell around you Sura 9:123
3- When you meet The Infidels in the battlefield, strike off their heads Sura 47:4
4- Mohamed is Alla's apostale. Those who follow him are ruthless to The infidels Sura 48:29
5- Prophet, make war on The infidels Sura 66: 9
6- Never be a helper to The disbelievers Sura 28:86
7- Kill The disbelievers wherever we find them (Sura 2:191)
8- 9:29 [And] fight against those (Al-La-Zina) who - despite having been vouchsafed revelation [aforetime] [40] -do not [truly] believe either in God or the Last Day, and do not consider forbidden that which God and His Apostle have forbidden, [41] and do not follow the religion of truth [which God has enjoined upon them] [42] till they [agree to] pay the exemption tax with a willing hand, after having been humbled [in war]. [43]
9- 47:4 Therefore, when you meet The infidels (unbelievers), [4] smite their necks until you overcome them fully, and then tighten their bonds; [5] but thereafter [set them free,] either by an act of grace or against ransom, so that the burden of war may be lifted: [6]

 
http://www.islamforpeace.org/quran.html

Quote
For example, those Quranic verses which condone Muslims fighting non-Muslims (9:5, 29 and 36), are not directed against the non-Muslims for being outside the faith, but because those non-Muslims were aggressors and/or transgressors. But if taken alone, and interpreted in isolation, such verses could lead one to believe that the Qur'an advocates war-like relations between Muslims and non-Muslims until the latter surrender or convert. So widespread are such de-contextualized assumptions that one Qur'an verse (9:5) was mislabelled "the Sword Verse."

When viewed against more than 100 other parallel Quranic verses, such extreme interpretations of these verses invalidate their own logic. For example, one of the most fundamental Quranic teachings is, "There shall be no coercion in matters of faith" (2:256), which lays down categorically that any attempt at the forcible conversion of unbelievers is prohibited and condemned. This precludes any legitimate possibility of true Muslims demanding or expecting that a defeated enemy should embrace Islam as the price for immunity or mercy.

Thus, the dangerously extremist interpretation that a state of war is normal between Muslims and non-Muslims is an exaggerated exception, expressed by a very small minority of scholars, among them the Egyptian Sayied Qutb, in his book of Quranic interpretation entitled, "Fe-zelal-al-Qur'an". In actual fact, his views were at odds with the prevailing opinions of his peers, including Abdo, Rida, Al-Gazali, Draaz, Khallaf, Shaltout, Al-Khoudry, and many other respected scriptural authorities.
http://www.mediamonitors.net/elmasry31.html

stay blessed,
habte selassie
« Last Edit: February 17, 2012, 02:44:46 PM by HabteSelassie » Logged

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« Reply #11 on: February 17, 2012, 02:43:00 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Quote
Today, radical Islamists who use violence and terrorism as a tactic, are manipulating the Kuran just as lynch mobs in the Deep South used to manipulate the Scriptures to support KKK terrorism, or the way the Crusades manipulated the Scriptures to support attacking Byzantium
So Mohammed was a radical Muslim then correct? His hands are loaded with blood. Even after the conquest of Mecca.

Thats way different than simply misguided followers (Terrorists or the Westboro crazies).

PP

Again, within the Kuran are specific verses which condemn violence, period.  There is really nothing more I can add without taking the time to add references, which when I get home from work I will be sure to do.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
It really doesn't matter since Mohammed invented the koran and he was a violent bloothirsty thug. The koran can say whatever it wants. History is pretty clear on the kind of man Mohammed was.

PP
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« Reply #12 on: February 17, 2012, 02:46:22 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


Quote
Today, radical Islamists who use violence and terrorism as a tactic, are manipulating the Kuran just as lynch mobs in the Deep South used to manipulate the Scriptures to support KKK terrorism, or the way the Crusades manipulated the Scriptures to support attacking Byzantium
So Mohammed was a radical Muslim then correct? His hands are loaded with blood. Even after the conquest of Mecca.

Thats way different than simply misguided followers (Terrorists or the Westboro crazies).

PP

Again, within the Kuran are specific verses which condemn violence, period.  There is really nothing more I can add without taking the time to add references, which when I get home from work I will be sure to do.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
It really doesn't matter since Mohammed invented the koran and he was a violent bloothirsty thug. The koran can say whatever it wants. History is pretty clear on the kind of man Mohammed was.

PP

Oh, what a lovely argument, if our criticisms of the Kuran turn out to be strawman fallacies then lets just ignore the Kuran entirely then eh?

The Kuran, be it Divinely inspired or simply a work of pure fiction, regardless is a book which a billion people base their lives upon, and so it is very relevant, and much like the Bible should be carefully interpreted by scholars and within its own full context.  By the way, that is what the OP discussion is about..

stay blessed,
habte selassie
« Last Edit: February 17, 2012, 02:48:03 PM by HabteSelassie » Logged

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« Reply #13 on: February 17, 2012, 02:49:25 PM »

Mohammed was a warlord.

Jesus was not.

This says a lot right there.
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« Reply #14 on: February 17, 2012, 02:51:49 PM »

Not a strawman argument if you think upon it.

We are to emulate Christ...correct? Most believers are to emulate their spiritual patriarch. In this case, with Mohammed, if you emulate him, then the peaceful Muslims are the radicals. His wars of aggression are very, very well documented.

If Christ said love, but himself hated, it would not matter what he said. He loved until crucifixion and afterwards.

Mohammed can say peace and love, but he himself waged wars of aggression, then does it matter what he said?

Its really not that hard, and nope not a strawman.

PP

EDIT: Mohammed's actions invalidates the Koran's supposed peaceful words; plain and simple.
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« Reply #15 on: February 17, 2012, 02:54:53 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Not a strawman argument if you think upon it.

We are to emulate Christ...correct? Most believers are to emulate their spiritual patriarch. In this case, with Mohammed, if you emulate him, then the peaceful Muslims are the radicals. His wars of aggression are very, very well documented.

If Christ said love, but himself hated, it would not matter what he said. He loved until crucifixion and afterwards.

Mohammed can say peace and love, but he himself waged wars of aggression, then does it matter what he said?

Its really not that hard, and nope not a strawman.

PP

EDIT: Mohammed's actions invalidates the Koran's supposed peaceful words; plain and simple.

That is not fair because Jesus Christ is GOD, and Mohammed is just a man.  Further, many Christian leaders have also failed to live up to the ideals of the Gospel, should we also then throw out the Bible because of these misconceptions?

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #16 on: February 17, 2012, 02:59:12 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Not a strawman argument if you think upon it.

We are to emulate Christ...correct? Most believers are to emulate their spiritual patriarch. In this case, with Mohammed, if you emulate him, then the peaceful Muslims are the radicals. His wars of aggression are very, very well documented.

If Christ said love, but himself hated, it would not matter what he said. He loved until crucifixion and afterwards.

Mohammed can say peace and love, but he himself waged wars of aggression, then does it matter what he said?

Its really not that hard, and nope not a strawman.

PP

EDIT: Mohammed's actions invalidates the Koran's supposed peaceful words; plain and simple.

That is not fair because Jesus Christ is GOD, and Mohammed is just a man.  Further, many Christian leaders have also failed to live up to the ideals of the Gospel, should we also then throw out the Bible because of these misconceptions?

stay blessed,
habte selassie
ok, lets try this again.

Let us put aside Christ being God for a minute.

Followers of a faith are to emulate its progenitor. Correct?

Muslims, if they emulate their progenitor, will act as Mohammed did. Which is a life of violence.

Christ spoke love and peace and died doing so. He died with a prayer of forgiveness on his lips.

If Christian leaders go against Christ's example, then they are violent, as history has shown via Crusades, oppression, etc.

If Muslims go against Mohammed's example, they are peaceful. Fairness does not enter into it.

The Koran is invalidated, if it teaches peace, by it's progenitor's ACTIONS.

PP
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« Reply #17 on: February 17, 2012, 03:05:35 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!


Quote
Today, radical Islamists who use violence and terrorism as a tactic, are manipulating the Kuran just as lynch mobs in the Deep South used to manipulate the Scriptures to support KKK terrorism, or the way the Crusades manipulated the Scriptures to support attacking Byzantium
So Mohammed was a radical Muslim then correct? His hands are loaded with blood. Even after the conquest of Mecca.

Thats way different than simply misguided followers (Terrorists or the Westboro crazies).

PP

Again, within the Kuran are specific verses which condemn violence, period.  There is really nothing more I can add without taking the time to add references, which when I get home from work I will be sure to do.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
It really doesn't matter since Mohammed invented the koran and he was a violent bloothirsty thug. The koran can say whatever it wants. History is pretty clear on the kind of man Mohammed was.

PP

Oh, what a lovely argument, if our criticisms of the Kuran turn out to be strawman fallacies then lets just ignore the Kuran entirely then eh?

The Kuran, be it Divinely inspired or simply a work of pure fiction, regardless is a book which a billion people base their lives upon, and so it is very relevant, and much like the Bible should be carefully interpreted by scholars and within its own full context.  By the way, that is what the OP discussion is about..

stay blessed,
habte selassie

Habte, I think PP has this one.  Sure, there were plenty of naughty Christians for every Moslem radical.  But at least we can point to Christ's example to show that Christianity is not about violence.  If you study the life of Mohammed and have any honesty at all, you are pretty much left with the same conclusion that PP, Biro, and Fr. George came to.
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« Reply #18 on: February 17, 2012, 03:14:12 PM »

Jenkins statement is about as groundbreaking and unexpected as Habte's Islamic sycophantism. Yawn. Some people will do anything to defend the indefensible...or to sell a book.
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« Reply #19 on: February 17, 2012, 03:27:48 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Jenkins statement is about as groundbreaking and unexpected as Habte's Islamic sycophantism. Yawn. Some people will do anything to defend the indefensible...or to sell a book.

Please, there is no reason to be insulting by calling my a sycophant just because we disagree on this Sad

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #20 on: February 17, 2012, 03:31:47 PM »

Comparing Jesus (even excluding the Divinity question) and Muhammad is comparing apples and oranges, because Jesus was not a political leader. A more appropriate comparison is Moses and Muhammad, because both instituted a set of laws and were involved in leading a large community amidst hostile, neighboring communities. And both engaged in violence, in one way or another.

It seems that when cultures moved from a poly-sacred culture to a mono-sacred culture (whether such changes occurred in West Asia, India, or Europe) there is a period of war and violence (Moses, Muhammad, Krishna, e.g.). Once mono-sacredness is established, then a 'self-emptying' form of mono-sacredness arises, centered on a non-violent individual (Jesus, Baha'ullah, Buddha, e.g.). It would not make a lot of sense to compare, say, a Buddha, to a Muhammad, since they operated at different levels of human, religious evolution. However, we can still be critical of the limitations of those earlier levels of human evolution.
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« Reply #21 on: February 17, 2012, 03:36:12 PM »

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A more appropriate comparison is Moses and Muhammad
If we were comparing Islam and Judaism then yes you would be correct.

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Please, there is no reason to be insulting by calling my a sycophant just because we disagree on this
I agree Habte. Although we disagree on basically everything, AND we've both been prtty harsh on each other on occassion, I do respect you.

PP
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« Reply #22 on: February 17, 2012, 03:40:20 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Comparing Jesus (even excluding the Divinity question) and Muhammad is comparing apples and oranges, because Jesus was not a political leader. A more appropriate comparison is Moses and Muhammad, because both instituted a set of laws and were involved in leading a large community amidst hostile, neighboring communities. And both engaged in violence, in one way or another.


Agreed completely.

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A more appropriate comparison is Moses and Muhammad
If we were comparing Islam and Judaism then yes you would be correct.

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Please, there is no reason to be insulting by calling my a sycophant just because we disagree on this
I agree Habte. Although we disagree on basically everything, AND we've both been prtty harsh on each other on occassion, I do respect you.

PP

Thank you, like wise Smiley

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #23 on: February 17, 2012, 04:31:59 PM »

First, a few articles responding to the Muslim critique of violence in the Old Testament

http://www.answering-islam.org/Hahn/jihad.htm
http://www.answering-islam.org/Terrorism/violence.html
http://answering-islam.org/Shamoun/q_amalekites.htm

Second, let's make a simple comparison between Jesus' and Muhammad's deity's statements:

Then Peter came to him and said, “Lord, how many times must I forgive my brother who sins against me? As many as seven times?” Jesus said to him, “Not seven times, I tell you, but seventy-seven times! (Matthew 18:21-22)

Ask forgiveness for them (O Muhammad), or ask not forgiveness for them; though thou ask forgiveness for them seventy times Allah will not forgive them. That is because they disbelieved in Allah and His messenger, and Allah guideth not wrongdoing folk. (Surah 9:80)

Third, the fundamental Islamic lie that Islam means peace is rebutted here: http://www.answering-islam.org/Hoaxes/salamislam.html

Finally, Habte, I would never consider the teachings/claims of an Islamic website trustworthy. This is because they worship the Father of lies.

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« Reply #24 on: February 17, 2012, 04:35:54 PM »

There is an Arabic term for it being acceptable to lie to an infidel if it furthers the cause of Islam.  At some point I may remember it.
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« Reply #25 on: February 17, 2012, 04:55:41 PM »

The Islamic website, from which Habte unfortunately quoted some claims, worships the Father of lies. Let's analyze their first argument and see how easily they tell lies to defend their diabolical faith:

LIE I
Quote
Indeed, according to other verses, even if a Muslim deemed someone an infidel, according to the Quran, he is still obligated to:

1. Behave with courtesy :
Consider, for instance, the following verse, which is supposed to instruct Muslims as to how they should deal with non-Muslims in the midst of hostilities (such as war): 9:6 And if any of the Idolatries (who are fighting you) seeks thy protection, grant him protection, so that he might [be able to] hear the word of God [from thee]; and thereupon convey him to a place where he can feel secure.

I would like you to focus on the bolded section in the quote above. These words in brackets are not in the Qur'an! Actually, Surah 9:6 is attached to Surah 9:5 and must therefore be quoted together with it so that we can get the context:

Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them, and take them (captive), and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish worship and pay the poor-due, then leave their way free. Lo! Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. And if anyone of the idolaters seeketh thy protection (O Muhammad), then protect him so that he may hear the Word of Allah, and afterward convey him to his place of safety. That is because they are a folk who know not. (Surah 9:5-6)

Evidently, Muhammad is asked by his false deity to take the chance of forecefully converting scared idolaters. While kidnapping and attacking the idolaters as a divine bandit (!), he was supposed to stop and protect those who submitted in fear to the Muslim gangs and implored for survival.This propagation tactic is considered courtesy by the Islamic website! Using the same strategy, some people may regard Nazi's concentration camps as a sign of Hitler's courtesy.  Roll Eyes

LIE II
Quote
For example, those Quranic verses which condone Muslims fighting non-Muslims (9:5, 29 and 36), are not directed against the non-Muslims for being outside the faith, but because those non-Muslims were aggressors and/or transgressors.

Let's read Surah 9:29 to find out the truth and expose this reckless lie:

Fight against them who believe not in God, nor in the last day, and forbid not that which God and his apostle have forbidden, and profess not the true religion, of those unto whom the scriptures have been delivered, until they pay tribute by right of subjection, and they be reduced low. (Surah 9:29)

Despite the lie, this verse so simply and overtly says that Muslims are commanded to fight ALL non-Muslims who:

1) don't believe in God and the Day of Judgment.
2) forbid not what God and his apostle have forbidden.
3) do not profess the true religion, which is but Islam according to the Qur'an (Surah 3:19).

Not only that all these three criteria are about FAITH, but also they do not even imply what the Islamic website is trying to read into them. Allah/Muhammad did not state that only the transgressors and enemies from these groups would be subject to fight and humiliation through the payment of jizyah!

Let's read the two verses following this verse of sword:

The Jews say, Ezra is the son of God: And the Christians say Christ is the son of God. They say this (only) with their mouths: They imitate the saying of those who were unbelievers in former times. May God curse them (literally: fight against them)! How can they be so infatuated? They take their priests and their monks for [their] lords, besides God, and Christ the son of Mary; although they are commanded to worship one God only: There is no God but he; far be that from him, which they associate [with him]! (Surah 9:30-31)

In short, Muhammad declared ALL Jews and Christians polytheist infidels! In his sight a Jew and Christian was not different from the Meccan pagans he constantly fought and slayed.

Habte, I hope you can see how that Islamic website managed to deceive you.  Roll Eyes

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« Reply #26 on: February 17, 2012, 05:02:39 PM »

There is an Arabic term for it being acceptable to lie to an infidel if it furthers the cause of Islam.  At some point I may remember it.

Taqiyya.
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« Reply #27 on: February 17, 2012, 05:03:36 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!



Habte, I hope you can see how that Islamic website managed to deceive you.  Roll Eyes



If you think that I only got that information from Islamic websites, you are mistaken, those were just a quick google search since I'm at work.  Did the anti-Islamic website you got your information somehow make it less biased?

I would like to add this note, if we wanted to know about Orthodox Church, would we check out a Baptist's website? Hardly.. so why should we not trust Islamic information about themselves, Muslims are not competent to speak for themselves?

When I get home I will tackle in depth a response, until then I can only pray for peace between us all, whether we agree or not.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #28 on: February 17, 2012, 05:08:46 PM »

I guess we are kind of missing the point, though.

Without Christ to temper the OT, it's pretty violent stuff. Isn't it where legalists and fundamentalists love to dwell? I'm not saying it's right to do so, but the point is that there violence is there; horrible violence that can be used as a call to arms on so many issues.

I suppose my point is this. That without the revelation of Christ we could be just as violent as Muslims; and actually have been, even with it.

Islam is wrong, yes. Muslims lie to reach an end. Christianity is right. Christians lie to reach an end, too. And it's worse for us, because in the process of reaching into the OT to give credence to our violence, we actually overlook the revelation of Christ. Muslims don't have it to ignore.

 
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« Reply #29 on: February 17, 2012, 05:12:40 PM »


If you think that I only got that information from Islamic websites, you are mistaken, those were just a quick google search since I'm at work.  

The information you posted and I responded to was definitely taken from a lying Islamic website.  Wink

Did the anti-Islamic website you got your information somehow make it less biased?

It is for you to decide. I did not quote from any anti-Islamic website while exposing the inaccuracy of the Islamic information quoted by you.

I would like to add this note, if we wanted to know about Orthodox Church, would we check out a Baptist's website? Hardly.. so why should we not trust Islamic information about themselves, Muslims are not competent to speak for themselves?

Muslims should not be relied upon for any information about Islam. After hearing something from them, we must test its accuracy and be sure that they are not fooling people. This is because they worship the father of lies.

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« Reply #30 on: February 17, 2012, 05:53:54 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

I guess we are kind of missing the point, though.

Without Christ to temper the OT, it's pretty violent stuff. Isn't it where legalists and fundamentalists love to dwell? I'm not saying it's right to do so, but the point is that there violence is there; horrible violence that can be used as a call to arms on so many issues.


Agreed.

In regards to Islamic apologetics, I am not a Muslim, nor do I need to apologize for them so much as I don't like when the forum gets caught up in anti-Islamic fervor and pep rallies..

Theophilos, thank you for adding substance to the discussion, while I disagree with some of your conclusions, others are valid.  However I will not waste my energy on this any longer, it only seems to make me look worse so I will keep my peace, as dragging this out any further will only continue to splinter and divide us up. Its all love, and we should always be praying for everyone, ourselves and them included.  If some fight against us with swords, we shall win the battle with prayer beads.

stay blessed,
habte selassie
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« Reply #31 on: February 17, 2012, 07:22:12 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Jenkins statement is about as groundbreaking and unexpected as Habte's Islamic sycophantism. Yawn. Some people will do anything to defend the indefensible...or to sell a book.

Please, there is no reason to be insulting by calling my a sycophant just because we disagree on this Sad

stay blessed,
habte selassie

I really can't think of a nicer way to put it, though. It is not so much that you are personally in lock-step with Islam on a theological level as it is that whenever there is a thread on Islam/the Qur'an, it is expected (due to past experience in many such threads) that you will remind us that not all of Islam is X, that the Qur'an also says Y, etc., as though this is new information, or as though there is something wrong with being anti-Islam. Like sands through the hourglass, so are the responses to be expected whenever anything broaches this topic, as I have never seen anything else from you. (The same, I should say, could most definitely be said about me, as I have never had anything good to say about Islam, and am not about to start now.)

Hence, having a relativist historian like Jenkins jump on the Bible in defense of the Qur'an is likewise to be expected, as that's just the way that some people operate. If the comparison personally offends you, I'm sorry. There are a lot worse historians you could be compared to, yet at the same time I see nothing wrong with pointing out the ridiculousness of his false equivalency, which is likewise the territory of all who would like to favorably or even neutrally compare the work of Satan (the Qur'an) to the word of God.

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« Reply #32 on: February 17, 2012, 08:42:38 PM »

The Qur'an says a lot of things. I find some of them right and beautiful, and I find a lot of them....well, about as expected. Look at Judaism. Perhaps some will argue that rabbinic Judaism is somehow violent, deceitful, bloodthirsty, bent on world domination and overproduced high-budget films, etc. But I think most of us can agree that we haven't seen a lot of aggression there, even given all these violent passages, which we have in our own Bibles as well. I think this is because many factors go into determining the content and praxis of a religion. Foundational texts like the Qur'an, the Upanishads, the Gospels and Epistles, do bear study and scrutiny, but it seems to me this attack on Islam does exactly what we criticize in the historian.

As for me, I think Islam has been much demonized and much whitewashed as well. I have known a few Muslims, and I cannot think of one who really bears out this caricature some are projecting onto the religion. Oh sure, you say, probably there are lots of good, virtuous Muslims. But they're simply being inconsistent. The Qur'an really says X and Y, and this hadith says Z. But I am not interested in this sort of argumentation, because it reeks of everything I despise in fundamentalism.

I suppose I'm not interested in presenting an argument, either. I have skimmed through the Qur'an and examined a few passages in more detail, but I am far from an expert on any of the aforementioned holy books. My impression, though, is this: Islam is not irredeemably terrible. It is not intrinsically inhuman. It could use a reworking. There are schools of thought in Islam I favour over others. But there are praiseworthy elements in Islam. It is simple, in a way; simple, to me, in theology. Perhaps self-consciously so. Complex in jurisprudence. I think this trend needs to be reversed, but there is something to be said for the Muslim mindset - or for a Muslim mindset I know and approve of. Tongue

What's troubling to me is it does seem that, at the end of the day, Islam is and always will be tied up in politics. It is imperialistic. It is a religion designed to be integrated into the state and every facet of life, it is for everybody, and the prevailing attitude seems to be that while people can be free to practice their religion, they should also be practicing it in an Islamic state. I find this problematic on many levels, but this tendency can probably be moderated or eliminated. Something to watch for.
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« Reply #33 on: February 17, 2012, 10:14:25 PM »

Greetings in that Divine and Most Precious Name of Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ!

Jenkins statement is about as groundbreaking and unexpected as Habte's Islamic sycophantism. Yawn. Some people will do anything to defend the indefensible...or to sell a book.

Please, there is no reason to be insulting by calling my a sycophant just because we disagree on this Sad

stay blessed,
habte selassie

I really can't think of a nicer way to put it, though.

I'm sure you could have if you but tried. Wink

Quote
Hence, having a relativist historian like Jenkins jump on the Bible in defense of the Qur'an is likewise to be expected, as that's just the way that some people operate. If the comparison personally offends you, I'm sorry. There are a lot worse historians you could be compared to, yet at the same time I see nothing wrong with pointing out the ridiculousness of his false equivalency, which is likewise the territory of all who would like to favorably or even neutrally compare the work of Satan (the Qur'an) to the word of God.


Ok, let's say that's correct. That the Quran is the work of Satan and not just plargiorised meanderings that make little sense in the long run. The fact still stands that the word of God has plenty of nasty stuff, too. Stuff, which fundamentals have called upon to their advantage; and that Christians might conveniently forget that when criticising Islam.

And if using one's holy book to encourage inhuman acts is wrong for Muslims, it's wrong for us, too. More wrong for us, because we have the Revelation, not them. If anyone shouldn't be wrong, it's us. We can almost excuse them for doing savage things as humans that come naturally without the guidance of the Holy Spirit. We are the group with the *edge*, but look how that has played out in history.

I can't see why anyone would get so het up about what this historian has said.




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« Reply #34 on: February 17, 2012, 11:17:54 PM »

Ok, let's say that's correct. That the Quran is the work of Satan and not just plargiorised meanderings that make little sense in the long run. The fact still stands that the word of God has plenty of nasty stuff, too.

And one has what to do with the other?

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Stuff, which fundamentals have called upon to their advantage; and that Christians might conveniently forget that when criticising Islam.

I didn't forget it. It has nothing to do with Islam. You can criticize Islam without having to answer for anything in the Bible, and you can criticize the Bible without having any comparison to the Qur'an. Again, the two have nothing to do with one another but that some people want to make some sort of false equivalency between the two whereby we cannot take issue with Islam because there is also violence in the Bible. The Qur'an has nothing to do with anything. The Qur'an is garbage. It is the incoherent ramblings of a false prophet that people only take to have any connection to other scriptures because it says it does. That is yet another thing that I don't take the Qur'an as a trustworthy source on.

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And if using one's holy book to encourage inhuman acts is wrong for Muslims, it's wrong for us, too.


Muslims don't have a holy book. They have a book -- that's all. They might as well be quoting Strunk & White or Dr. Seuss. The comparison does not hold.

Quote
More wrong for us, because we have the Revelation, not them. If anyone shouldn't be wrong, it's us.


You see, this kind of reasoning is exactly why I approach this subject as I do: What we do or do not do is of no relation to Islam, just as what they do or do not do in accordance with their book and their belief system is not to be tied to us. We are separate communities, we have different religions, and their origin is not our origin and vice-versa (again, as religious communities; obviously, as individual people we are all created by the same God, which is the God whom they reject). I reject any effort to equate the two, whether the point is to tell us to get our act together or that we can't criticize them or whatever Jenkins is trying to say. Yes, we shouldn't be wrong, but it's not as though we just shouldn't be wrong in relation to them, because the behavior of Muslims or the dictates of Islam are not our yardstick. Completely separate from Islam, we should be living by our principles. After all, they're the late-comers with the religion that nobody needs that they insist on foisting upon the world. I'm not buying into the relativistic worldview that places Islam as somehow together with us, either in a good or a bad or an indifferent light. Islam is something else entirely, and it should have stayed in the cave where Muhammad claims to have been shown it.  

Quote
We can almost excuse them for doing savage things as humans that come naturally without the guidance of the Holy Spirit. We are the group with the *edge*, but look how that has played out in history.

I'm not a big fan of the idea that anyone should be excused from following God, so I'm going to have to disagree with you there. EVERY knee shall bow (Philippians 2:10), so if Muslims or any other non-Christian does not recognize Him now (through no fault of their own, sure), then they will eventually do so.

And I also don't care for this "look at how that has played out in history" hand-wringing. I look at Christian history (particularly before the Islamic cancer devastated the Christian East) and see St. Antony working for the Kingdom of God in the Egyptian desert, and St. Athanasius standing against the entire world of heretics for the true faith. And I see Amma Syncletica being a beacon for women called to monasticism, and St. Moses the Strong a pinnacle of humility and model of repentance. And St. Abanoub, the child martyr, giving up his spirit in unshakable commitment to Christ the Lord in a way that makes Islamic "martyrs" look like a bunch of weak little cowards (which they are). And St. Frumentius, "Abba Selama", bringing the Christian religion to Ethiopia and strengthening it and making it as a light unto the world. And St. Gregory the Illuminator doing the same among the Armenians, as Cyril and Methodius would later do among the Slavs, as St. Thomas earlier did among the Indians, etc. I see every single man, woman, and child who has ever taken seriously the Christian confession forming an indestructible fortress of which Christ Himself is the cornerstone.

Yes, look how that has played out in history! Look, and rejoice, and be strengthened by it! Nothing else compares to it, and nothing else can stand against it and expect not to be uprooted together with everything else that was not planted by the Father.

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I can't see why anyone would get so het up about what this historian has said.

It's not what the historian has said, it's how my fellow Christians have taken to it as though it is something that we should accept. I do not believe that it is.
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« Reply #35 on: February 19, 2012, 03:53:28 PM »


Theophilos, thank you for adding substance to the discussion, while I disagree with some of your conclusions, others are valid. 

You are welcome.

However I will not waste my energy on this any longer, it only seems to make me look worse so I will keep my peace, as dragging this out any further will only continue to splinter and divide us up. Its all love, and we should always be praying for everyone, ourselves and them included.  If some fight against us with swords, we shall win the battle with prayer beads.

stay blessed,
habte selassie

Agreed.
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« Reply #36 on: February 20, 2012, 06:11:50 PM »

Habte, I think PP has this one.  Sure, there were plenty of naughty Christians for every Moslem radical.  But at least we can point to Christ's example to show that Christianity is not about violence.  If you study the life of Mohammed and have any honesty at all, you are pretty much left with the same conclusion that PP, Biro, and Fr. George came to.

That works if you are a sola scriptura, ahistorical Protestant.  On the other hand Constantine, Justinian and Nikolai II are worshipped as saints in the Orthodox Church.  Unless a radical revision of the menaion is in order, it is not really fair to exclude the unpleasantries of Christian history that are still celebrated to this day by mainstream Orthodoxy. 
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« Reply #37 on: February 20, 2012, 06:20:06 PM »

Habte, I think PP has this one.  Sure, there were plenty of naughty Christians for every Moslem radical.  But at least we can point to Christ's example to show that Christianity is not about violence.  If you study the life of Mohammed and have any honesty at all, you are pretty much left with the same conclusion that PP, Biro, and Fr. George came to.

That works if you are a sola scriptura, ahistorical Protestant.  On the other hand Constantine, Justinian and Nikolai II are worshipped as saints in the Orthodox Church.  Unless a radical revision of the menaion is in order, it is not really fair to exclude the unpleasantries of Christian history that are still celebrated to this day by mainstream Orthodoxy. 

How do you deal with these apparent problems in Orthodox theology, Nektarios?
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« Reply #38 on: February 20, 2012, 06:23:42 PM »

Habte, I think PP has this one.  Sure, there were plenty of naughty Christians for every Moslem radical.  But at least we can point to Christ's example to show that Christianity is not about violence.  If you study the life of Mohammed and have any honesty at all, you are pretty much left with the same conclusion that PP, Biro, and Fr. George came to.

That works if you are a sola scriptura, ahistorical Protestant.  On the other hand Constantine, Justinian and Nikolai II are worshipped as saints in the Orthodox Church.  Unless a radical revision of the menaion is in order, it is not really fair to exclude the unpleasantries of Christian history that are still celebrated to this day by mainstream Orthodoxy. 

I was only going for the founder of the religion.  So yeah, I was going Sola Scriptura.  I wasn't aware of too many things about Christ out of the scriptures.  Perhaps you are thinking of the gospel of Judas or the infancy gospel of Thomas.  I wasn't including anything from them.
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« Reply #39 on: February 20, 2012, 06:28:29 PM »

Habte, I think PP has this one.  Sure, there were plenty of naughty Christians for every Moslem radical.  But at least we can point to Christ's example to show that Christianity is not about violence.  If you study the life of Mohammed and have any honesty at all, you are pretty much left with the same conclusion that PP, Biro, and Fr. George came to.

That works if you are a sola scriptura, ahistorical Protestant.  On the other hand Constantine, Justinian and Nikolai II are worshipped as saints in the Orthodox Church.  Unless a radical revision of the menaion is in order, it is not really fair to exclude the unpleasantries of Christian history that are still celebrated to this day by mainstream Orthodoxy. 

I was only going for the founder of the religion.  So yeah, I was going Sola Scriptura.  I wasn't aware of too many things about Christ out of the scriptures.  Perhaps you are thinking of the gospel of Judas or the infancy gospel of Thomas.  I wasn't including anything from them.

But how can you justify using sola scriptura when it is a minority position even within Christendom?

How do you deal with these apparent problems in Orthodox theology, Nektarios?

The same thing that everyone else does - ignore the weird stuff and get on with my life. 
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« Reply #40 on: February 21, 2012, 02:19:25 PM »

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But how can you justify using sola scriptura when it is a minority position even within Christendom?
It is a minority view, but we have to deal with issues we face locally. For me, I live in a bastion of Protestantism so I have to be educated on such things far more than someone that lives in say, Moscow because I deal with it literally, every day (especially since most Christians where I live state openly that RC's, Orthodox, Anglicans, etc. are not Christians AT ALL).

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That works if you are a sola scriptura, ahistorical Protestant.  On the other hand Constantine, Justinian and Nikolai II are worshipped as saints in the Orthodox Church.  Unless a radical revision of the menaion is in order, it is not really fair to exclude the unpleasantries of Christian history that are still celebrated to this day by mainstream Orthodoxy
Although I was talking about the progenitors of the faiths, you are correct. Such things must be addressed.

PP
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« Reply #41 on: February 21, 2012, 02:26:19 PM »

Jesus already dealt with them.
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« Reply #42 on: February 21, 2012, 05:15:14 PM »

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But how can you justify using sola scriptura when it is a minority position even within Christendom?
It is a minority view, but we have to deal with issues we face locally. For me, I live in a bastion of Protestantism so I have to be educated on such things far more than someone that lives in say, Moscow because I deal with it literally, every day (especially since most Christians where I live state openly that RC's, Orthodox, Anglicans, etc. are not Christians AT ALL).

Quote
That works if you are a sola scriptura, ahistorical Protestant.  On the other hand Constantine, Justinian and Nikolai II are worshipped as saints in the Orthodox Church.  Unless a radical revision of the menaion is in order, it is not really fair to exclude the unpleasantries of Christian history that are still celebrated to this day by mainstream Orthodoxy
Although I was talking about the progenitors of the faiths, you are correct. Such things must be addressed.

PP

More than that, both you and I were discussing Jesus and Mohammed.  For Mohammed you can get sources on him from the Koran, the Hadithas, and being a historical warlord there are likely going to be some Byzantine and Sassanid sources regarding him.

As for Christ, if you are going to discuss the actions of our Lord, I'd be interested to know which sources outside of the Scriptures Nektarios is using.  I use Sola Scriptura when discussing the earthly life of Christ because it is the only source I know of (as well as some Traditions of the Church - e.g. Christ's presence smashing the idols in Egypt).  Nonetheless, the New Testament is the largest, most complete set of information regarding the life of Christ that I know of, so it is what I use.  Information regarding our Lord from Suetonius and Tacitus is a bit too scant.
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« Reply #43 on: February 21, 2012, 05:21:09 PM »

Yeah Suetonius only mention "Christus" once. Josephus speaks about Christ but only off-hand. Other than what the Koran says about Christ (which is not contemporary anyways), I dont know of any contemporary accounts of Christ outside of scripture. I believe that is why you had the arguments in the 90's about the historicity of Christ. These folks said the Christ was an invention however, they've mostly been silenced as in debate they were found out to be really just anti-Christian.

PP
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« Reply #44 on: February 21, 2012, 06:03:04 PM »

More than that, both you and I were discussing Jesus and Mohammed.  For Mohammed you can get sources on him from the Koran, the Hadithas, and being a historical warlord there are likely going to be some Byzantine and Sassanid sources regarding him.

As for Christ, if you are going to discuss the actions of our Lord, I'd be interested to know which sources outside of the Scriptures Nektarios is using.  I use Sola Scriptura when discussing the earthly life of Christ because it is the only source I know of (as well as some Traditions of the Church - e.g. Christ's presence smashing the idols in Egypt).  Nonetheless, the New Testament is the largest, most complete set of information regarding the life of Christ that I know of, so it is what I use.  Information regarding our Lord from Suetonius and Tacitus is a bit too scant.

Actually there are a wide variety of sources about Mohammed.  That's what makes the book Hagarism so interesting.  Nonetheless it is unfair to compare an idealized Christianity to actual Islam.  If your thesis is that Christ rejected violence and terror, that would put you are direct odds with the history of the Orthodox Church.  The Orthodox Church has liturgical services dedicated to bloody tyrants.  So if you are going to argue against Islam with that tactic, you are just as strongly arguing against historic Christianity. 
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