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Is Islam a Violent Religion?

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Something has always bothered me about declarations that claim Islam is a violent religion. Largely relying on circumstantial evidence, because the regions that are typically the most violent tend to be Islamic, the argument goes that Islam is a violent religion. I haven’t read the Koran that I was sent by CAIR yet to decide for myself, but the claim sounds eerily similar to those that come from another sector of society.

The problem I have with this line of reasoning is that if you take history from a few hundred years ago, it could just as easily be applied to Christianity, and in fact, many secular “thinkers” continue to argue that Christianity breeds nothing but violence. It is this line of thought the leads social elites to demand that students say nothing that could smell of religion because that would violate the “wall of separation”. How it can be argued that the First Amendment (designed solely to protect individual citizen’s right of expression) supports the notion that private citizens not be allowed to speak their minds is beyond rationality.

Universities unconstitutionally suppress religious speech. Anything that can be related to Christianity is ripped out of the public square. This is what Enlightenment thinking has wrought, not freedom of expression, but restriction of the lines of inquiry into the deepest questions of human existence.

By claiming Islam is a violent religion on similar bases, people have unconsciously validated the Enlightenment thought that religion only breeds violence. This idea is simply wrong.

As an example, take Northern Ireland, which is often described as suffering from sectarian violence. On one hand, you have the Catholics who want to claim Northern Ireland as their own, and on the other, you have the Protestants (Anglicans) who want to claim Northern Ireland as theirs. The problem is the fighting has nothing to do with religion. Belfast holds no particular weight for the Papacy, and unless Belfast figures into Henry VIII’s problems with his Y chromosome, it has nothing to do with Anglicanism either.

The fighting over North Ireland is a political fight based on two nations’ claims that the land belongs to them. The Irish (a predominantly Catholic people) claim that Belfast rightfully belongs to them. The English (predominantly Anglican) claim it is theirs. Religion isn’t the area of contention. Anyone who describes this as a sectarian fight largely misses the point or is intentionally trying to find a tendency of violence in religion where it does not exist.

Another example is the so-called sectarian violence in Iraq. The Sunnis and Shiites don’t like each other, that is clear. However, when they have been fighting in Iraq, it doesn’t appear that they are fighting over the finer points of Islam. They do appear to be fighting over economics and political power. For the two groups to come together and form a viable government, it won’t take a reconciliation of the finer points of religious doctrine, but a political compromise.

The problem with religion is that it makes good propaganda in the hands of social elites who want to manipulate public opinion in their favor. This is why the “wall of separation” exists, to prevent the organs of government from misusing religion and vice versa. The institutions ought to remain separate.

It isn’t religion that drives people to violence; it is the social elites who use religion as a tool. It is naïve in the first degree to think heads of state sit around and think about what God wants of them. Generally, the most power hungry are more concerned with an increase of their own power and wealth, typically the things directly antithetical to most religions.

The next time someone says Islam (or another religion for that matter) is violent, take pause. Such over-simplistic stereotypes tend not to be well thought out and are generally just intellectual laziness on the part of a person who can’t win an argument otherwise. Anyone can cherry-pick a verse or two from a book.

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About John Bambenek

John Bambenek is a political activist and computer security expert. He has his own company Bambenek Consulting in Champaign, IL that specializes in digital forensics and computer security investigations.
  • Joan Bias

    “Anyone can cherry-pick a verse or two from a book.”

    Except you, Mr. Bambanek, who haven’t read it.

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    And once upon a time people thought it was a good thing to not characterize (or rather mischaracterize) things you haven’t read.

    Note the lack of characterization of Islam.

    Then note the correct spelling of my name.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    I appreciated this one, Bambenek, damn near through-and-through. My experience (at an extremely liberal university) wasn’t nearly the religiously oppressive institution you depict, but admittedly I graduated before 9/11 and can’t speak to how things have been afterward.

    In any case, we generally don’t agree much, but this time we’re in lock-step.

  • TS

    “Is Islam a Violent Religion?”
    Yes. Inherently. Muhammed directed battles and had his detractors assassinated. Even pregnant women. And old men. He ordered torture and beheadings. Anyone who insulted him or questioned his prophethood got the sword (when he was able to weild that kind of power). When he was weak he preached peaceful coexistence, when he was strong he preached war. His deathbed wish was that the Arabian peninsula should be cleansed of ‘infidels’.
    Anyway, Jesus did not preach war, that is why Christianity could be reformed. Muhammed did, and a reformation of Islam is actually what we are seeing now with the violence. Going back to the roots of Islam, to Muhammed’s words and deeds, leads to more violence. This is the difference many fail to see.
    In any matter, you should read the Koran, and the biography of Muhammed’s life and you will see he was a cult leader, complete with taking his best friend’s young daughter for his ‘wife’ at the age of 6, and consumating that ‘marriage’ when the girl, Aisha, was the age of 9. (‘Allah’ told him it was ok) The stress of this caused the girl’s hair to fall out. How’s that for violence?
    Once you read the Koran and learn about Muhammed it will all become clear to you.

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    Glad you liked the article, Michael.

    I don’t know if I’d call it religiously oppressive, but the rules clearly disallow for any speech accept “prolytizing”. However, since most speech in this context is persuasive, why the specific category of persuading for religion? They certainly allow persuasion against it. By disallow, I should say it won’t be funded. It’s not precisely free speech to preregulate what categories of speech are allowed without a real good reason (and I wouldn’t necessarily consider hate speech in that category, isn’t the ostracization enough). Religious groups also tend not to be allowed to form on religious lines. For instance, you can’t require the leadership of a Christian group to be Christian. Sure, in other contexts it makes sense to not allow discrimination, but when a group is organized around an idea (or religion) it strikes to the very heart of free association to not allow groups to reflect that religion in their formation.

    Is it oppresive? I think that’s a rather strong word for it, but it certainly unconstitutionally restricts the freedom of the religious, and the federal courts have said as much when those institutions have been (rarely) called on it.

  • Nancy

    You’re writing an article on Islam being a violent religion without bothering to read the Qu’ran first? That rather removes any credibility or relevance of this article, or you as the writer, IMO.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    I understand, JB, but my experience (’97-’01) was not the same as you describe above. Religious groups of all stripes received funding from the university–many of them were guaranteed by the university constitution.

    I do think it’s splitting hairs a bit to say, “for instance you can’t require the leadership of a Christian group to be Christian.” I won’t deny that this might be true in some places (I have no knowledge either way), but I doubt that it’s ever caused a problem with any Christian group because, say, an atheist assumed leadership of the group against the members’ wishes.

    As for whether it’s oppressive, you say, “it certainly unconstitutionally restricts the freedom of the religious.” That’s a textbook definition of oppressive, isn’t it?

  • Joan Bias

    Sorry about the misspelling. And I was merely pointing out the necessary inadequacy of your “analysis,” since it’s based on the false premise that claims that Islam is a violent religion “largely rely(ing) on circumstantial evidence.” Why would anyone listen to such an analysis when the actual evidence of the religion’s beliefs and workings are widely available. For instance, on Mr. Bambenek’s bookshelf.

    I’m not accusing you of mischaracterization of Islam, I’m pointing out that you already know the best way to answer the question of your post’s title.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    Joan,

    Why would anyone listen to such an analysis when the actual evidence of the religion’s beliefs and workings are widely available. For instance, on Mr. Bambenek’s bookshelf.

    Not necessarily true.

    Bear in mind that despite what many people think, the Christian Bible takes a good bit of study, cultural and historical context, and several levels of translation. You don’t really get much handle on Christianity and its traditions, doctrines, etc. just by reading the raw text of the Bible. That’s why so many versions of it are so heavily annotated.

    So why take it for granted that reading the Koran, without further education in its cultural/historical context and in classical Arabic, will give you any realistic picture of Islam?

  • Joan Bias

    Well, of course. No one’s suggesting anybody stop at the Koran.

  • Joan Bias

    My point is that his central, stated premise is wrong, and reading the Koran would have disabused him of it.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    The central, stated premise that Islam is not inherently a violent religion would be invalidated by reading the Koran?

  • Joan Bias

    What is wrong is the premise (central and stated in the second sentence) that Islam is characterized as violent based on circumstantial evidence. A reading of the actual evidence (ie the Koran) would indeed disabuse him of that notion, that its characterization as violent is based on circumstantial evidence.

    You seem to be willfully misreading what is quite clear, I’m not sure to what end.

  • Bliffle

    But even if your argument is granted, it remains true that religion gives power-mad rulers a convenient tool to mass people and manipulate them through their religious organization. And the peculiar obsession of religion that distinguishes it from other organizations, such as the Garden Club, is the belief that they hold transcendant values, given from some god, that is above worldly matters. Thus, the power-mad can claim that they talk to god, that they understand god, and therefore claim the allegiance and obedience of The Faithful.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    I’m not willfully misreading anything. A reading of the actual evidence might lead Bambenek to conclude that Islam is violent, but reading it would not change his belief that other people are characterizing it as violent WITHOUT regard to the actual evidence.

    I think you’re presuming from a disconnect in logic. The Koran might or might not characterize Islam as a violent religion. Bambenek is not arguing that, since he hasn’t read it. What he’s saying is that too many of the people who insist that it’s a violent religion, haven’t read the Koran either–they’re just going on what they see on the news every night.

    How will his reading the Koran make him decide that the people who are calling Islam “violent” have read it too? Unless he recognizes specific passages that those people have quoted, it won’t make any difference.

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    I find it amusing that people are arguing about the central premise in something I wrote with me sitting right here…

    Just an aside.

  • Diz

    “We should fully understand our religion. Fighting is a part of our religion and our Sharia. Those who love God and his Prophet and this religion cannot deny that. Whoever denies even a minor tenet of our religion commits the gravest sin in Islam.”

    -osama bin laden

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    Fair enough, JB. (This happens all the time in literary circles, of course.)

    What do you see as the central premise?

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    Bin Laden is not exactly the most reliable source on Islamic doctrine, is he, Diz?

  • Diz

    John please let the thousands of jihadists know that their religion is not violent.

  • Joan Bias

    Oh, now I see to what end. That’s all for me.

  • Diz

    Maybe not michael but the crazy assholes who brainwashed him are.

    Jihad: A holy war or spiritual struggle against infidels.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    Not if they’re crazy assholes.

  • Diz

    Your arguments are invalid because a religion’s nature is in the eye of the beholder. Religions can be interpreted in millions of ways because the documentation is always so inconsistent. It just so happens that muslims have more of a tendency to believe their religion wants them to murder innocent civilians so they can become a martyr and have sex with tons of virgins in heaven with mohammed.

  • Clavos

    MJW 19:

    No he isn’t, but unfortunately he does get a lot of exposure and thus wields a lot of influence.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    True, Clavos, but he wields a great deal more influence on our perceptions of Muslims than on Muslims’ perceptions of themselves.

  • Clavos

    True, except for the crazies who follow him.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    It just so happens that muslims have more of a tendency to believe their religion wants them to murder innocent civilians so they can become a martyr and have sex with tons of virgins in heaven with mohammed.

    Some do.

    Not all.

    Not even most.

    You’ve mentioned the word “thousands,” Diz, which is probably an accurate number, but considering there are a billion Muslims worldwide, “thousands” of Muslims adds up to virtually nothing.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    True, except for the crazies who follow him.

    Again, though: not a good example. :-)

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    Michael-

    I think the central premise is much as you describe. The people who rush to claim Islam is a violent religion cherry-pick some facts, cherry-pick some verses and draw conclusions. Just because all the terrorists right now happen to be Islamic, it doesn’t follow that all in Islam are terrorists. The problem with Islam is that the violence can easily be attributed to being too closely tied into the ambitions of nations.

    If we are going to proclaim a religion violent, we need to do serious footwork first (which hasn’t been done), otherwise it is just a capitulation to the Enlightenment idea that all religion is violence.

  • Diz

    I think the problem with this whole debate is a misperception of what people are implying when they say islam is violent.

    I believe most people imply that islam is the source of violence, not that islam is by violent by its own nature…and once again, theres no way to say what the nature of islam is because its in the eye of the beholder.

  • Diz

    You seem to think they I myself believe that islam is violent, i’ve already tried making it clear that its not up to us to say whether or not islam is violent, its up to its followers…some of which seem to think that it is violent.

  • http://www.nationalvanguard.org/ Richard Brodie

    have sex with tons of virgins in heaven

    And what happens after a martyr is done fucking all 72 of them. That could happen in a very short time, leaving him with a rather unsatisfying eternity with no longer any virgins to deflower.

    I presume Allah will make sure these virgins are all Nordic beauties, since the rape victim preference, at least for Nigerian Muslims in Sweden and Norway, leans heavily towards cute little White girls, instead of their own, not exactly Miss Universe, Black, Muslim females.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    Heyyyy, Brodie! Way to make a totally irrelevant statement!

  • Joan Bias

    No, Mr. Bambenek, it’s not a capitulation to anything. It’s an uninformed opinion.

    How would you know if people are cherry-picking if you haven’t read the book? You continue to declare things (“The problem with Islam is…) when you don’t know what you’re talking about, as you confess in the very next sentence.

    Plenty of people have been doing the “footwork” you describe. Just not you.

  • troll

    John – what do you say to folks who did spend time reading the Muslim holy books and Sharia and came away thinking: ‘now there’s some creepy violent dogma!’ – ?

    troll

  • Diz

    Michael youre right that the word “thousands” is on target and is minor in the grand scheme of things but jihadists arent the only muslims you could consider violent.

    What about the millions that want people stabbed in the fucking throat over the mohammed cartoons?

  • http://www.nationalvanguard.org/ Richard Brodie

    “Heyyyy, Brodie! Way to make a totally irrelevant statement!”

    Somebody else (Diz) brought up the virgins. Rape is a form of violence. Re-read the subject line of this article.

  • zingzing

    yeah richard, re-read the subject line, throw in some racism and what do you get? idiocy! yes… islamic terrorists rape scandenavian little girls… of course they do… save the aryans!

    john, i think you have to realize that this is all a cycle. islamic regions of the world are violent both by politics and by religion. the politics create the religious strife creates the politics and around and around.

    that said, i think you wrote this article, totally under-researched as it is, just so you could say something about the “oppression of christianity,” which is grossly misstated and manipulative.

    just thinking.

  • zingzing

    and i don’t think that any religion, as they are, is inherently violent. but all major religions (with a notable exception for buddhism) can easily become violent when put into contention with another religion. it’s something that can be used to manipulate people, and it has been time and time again throughout history. it’s a reason, an excuse, for violent politics. of course politics is just as bad, maybe worse, but when you add politics and religion together, you can easily find yourself in violent conflict, sometimes to the point of bloodshed.

  • Diz

    hey zing, if you’re so convinced that the islamic religion derives its strife from regional politics why don’t you test your theory outside of the islamic regions?

    Heres an idea, paint a picture of mohammed on the side of your house and wait to see what happens. If your house doesn’t get bombed out it is probably safe to assume your theory is correct.

  • http://www.nationalvanguard.org/ Richard Brodie

    yes… islamic terrorists rape scandenavian little girls… of course they do… save the aryans!

    What is really behind your words is this:

    little white girls don’t matter. yes islamic men rape scandinavian little girls. so what. the world would be better off without the white race. they’re doing us a favor by impregnating these aryan kids with black seed. the sooner the white race disappears the better.

  • troll

    Richard – since outing yourself as a member of the White Victimhood your entries have become asinine

    troll

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    all major religions (with a notable exception for buddhism) can easily become violent when put into contention with another religion.

    Same is true of any ideology, of any kind. Right wing vs. left wing. Mods vs. rockers. East Coast vs. West Coast rappers. Arsenal vs. West Ham United, for our British friends.

  • zingzing

    most islamic folk aren’t particularily black richard. where did you get that idea?

    as for you translation, you’re an idiot. come on, you really can’t believe that’s what i’m thinking. that was my translation of your words, and your translation of my words points our that my translation of your words is 100% spot on, you racist.

    what’s behind my words is this: “islamic terrorists don’t rape little white girls, particularily not scandenavians, all that much. in fact, isn’t most of the islamo-terrorist-rape-fun going on in dafur, etc? most of those people are black, yeah? where else are they going about raping? hmm? let me know…”

    and diz… if you’ll notice, i say it’s a cycle… religion breeding politics breeding religious strife (mixed up with political power struggle) breeding violence. i don’t put either politics or religion on a pedastal. both are equally bad, if pushed in the wrong direction. what i said is that they are not “inherantly” violent. if, say, several decades ago, before all of this christianity vs. islam vs. judaism shit got going again, i had painted mohammed on the side of my house, there probably would have been some nasty remarks, but no fire-bombs. now that the political engine has started running, any painting of mohammed automatically brings up some sort of religious hatred, both perceived on my part and a natural reaction on their’s. it’s a cycle. why don’t you walk into a christian church and turn the cross upside-down and piss in the holy water, see how the congregation treats you.

  • zingzing

    true, mike. led zepp fans vs. who fans, you goddamn deaf nutball. i’ll kick your ass.

    but… religious conflict has a bigger potential for nastiness on a larger, more brutal scale (and you know, that whole “killing of innocents” thingie).

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    So how come the two most prolific mass murders in world history, Stalin and Mao, were atheists?

  • Diz

    Zing I don’t mean to totally dismiss politics as a factor but what do you suppose is the political motivation behind masses of muslims pissed off and looking to kill people over cartoons in non-islamic regions?

  • Diz

    psychological disorders michael

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    News to me, Diz.

  • zingzing

    are you really asking a question, mike? i think it was probably some ridiculous hunger for power that drove them psychotic levels of paranoia… and the fact is that a corpse is cheaper than a human being.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    No, it was a rhetorical question, Zing. Just trying to suggest that maybe there is no correlation between brutality and religiosity.

  • zingzing

    no direct correlation anyway. i’ll agree there. still have to say that organized religion, as a whole, is a dangerous thing.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    I agree with that, too, but not because I think it makes violence more likely. Just because it discourages people from thinking for themselves, as most organized things (like political parties!) do.

  • zingzing

    sigh… it’s a sad state of affairs. we can’t be trusted in large numbers.

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    Joan-

    I’ve seen this footwork.

    I’ve found it lacking.

    That’s the point.

  • Dean

    Is Islam a Violent Religion?

    Are bees violent?

    Only if you poke at their nest.

  • http://www.truthbeknown.com Acharya S

    There is no question that Islam is a violent religion, as should be obvious from the deeds of its most ardent adherents. The Koran constantly calls for violence against the infidel. Please see my Quotes on Islam for more information in that regard.

    Islam was designed to be a warrior religion, and it remains a violent religion. No amount of sophistry or wishful thinking will change that fact, but thanks for the hopeful try. Now that I’ve said that, however did you manage to get your blog entry listed with Google such that you’ve gotten so many responses? Nice work.

    Acharya S
    Archaeologist, Historian, Mythologist, Linguist
    Religious Scholar
    Author, “The Christ Conspiracy: The Greatest Story Ever Sold”
    my blog

  • Dean

    “There is no question that Islam is a violent religion.”

    Which religion is not?

  • Baronius

    John, it’s peculiar how the focus of the debate became your not reading the Koran. As if most reporters and commentators have. Of course, you haven’t read the Koran if you read a translation. And the Koran isn’t supposed to be read, but heard. So the only people who can comment on Islam are those who can understand classical Arabic on hearing it. I guess everyone here but you and me is able to.

    Ideally, we should study the central text (with commentary) and the history of a religion before judging its violence. You provide some genuine historical insights in your article. Nice going. I don’t agree with every word of your article, but it is thought-provoking.

  • pleasexcusetheinteruption12

    zing #53…have you ever tried unorganized religion?

  • pleasexcusetheinteruption12

    I just want to ask Mr. Bambenek what kind of crazy far out loon he is. Who ever heard of a christian defending islam in order to defend his own religion from enlightenment attacks on the inherent violence of all religion.

    Cant you just be a normal christian and hate Islam?

    What’s wrong with you Babenek? Those free-thinking enlightenment loons get into your head?

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com/ Michael J. West

    There is no question that Islam is a violent religion, as should be obvious from the deeds of its most ardent adherents.

    Judging by the deeds of its most ardent adherents, Judaism is a violent religion. (An ardent adherent of Judaism, after all, shot his own Prime Minister in Israel.)

    Judging by its most ardent adherents, Wicca is a violent religion. (Some of its most ardent adherents practice animal sacrifices.)

    Judging by the deeds of its most ardent adherents, Christianity is an EXTREMELY violent religion. (Witness the Crusades, the Inquisition, the Wars of the Roses, pogroms here there and everywhere, and lovely people like Eric Rudolph.)

    Your statement is completely wrongheaded, Acharya S. A religion’s most ardent adherents are, by definition, not representative the religion as a whole.

  • Clavos

    Judging by its most ardent adherents, Wicca is a violent religion. (Some of its most ardent adherents practice animal sacrifices.)

    As do those who practice Santería, and not just its most ardent adherents, either.

    Do you really consider that to be violence, MJW? Animal cruelty, certainly; but violence?

    Here in Florida, it’s even legal.

  • duane

    What’s the point of having a religion in the first place if most of its adherents aren’t ardent? Shouldn’t an ardent Christian follow most closely the teachings of Jesus and be wholly non-violent? Does “ardent” mean “fanatical”?

  • pleasexcusetheinteruption12

    The correct phrase MJW uses is “most ardent.” You can’t have a whole religion of “most ardent” unless everyone was exactly as ardent, in which case what would be the point of religion? God would run out of room in heaven.

  • Dean

    According to the Lebanese Foreign Minister, Tarek Mitri, Hezbollah took two Israeli soldiers as bargaining chips for a negotiation.

    What was to be negotiated for the two soldiers was the release of three Lebanese prisoners in Israeli jails, return by Israel of Shaba Farms, Lebanese land still occupied by Israel, and maps of Israeli land mines in Lebanon to prevent further maiming and killing of innocent Lebanese.

    Instead of discussing and negotiating these issues, Israel decided to destroy the country of Lebanon.

    Does this make any sense?

  • duane

    OK, then, shouldn’t the most ardent Christians follow most closely the teachings of Jesus and be wholly non-violent?

    And I guess I forgot that Heaven doesn’t have suburbs. Space is limited, folks, so you better work on your ardentiousness.

  • Dean

    “For many are invited, but few are chosen.”
    — Matthew 22:14

  • duane

    Kind of like the Dreyfuss character in Close Encounters of the Third Kind.

  • pleasexcusetheinteruption12

    Duane #68:
    Im not a biblical scholar by any means but I would imagine to prove your statement you would have to first prove that Jesus taught his followers to be nonviolent. After you proved that the question would become who is the most ardent and are they nonviolent?

    All I know is that those who claim to be “most ardent” also tend to be “most violent.” Whether they actually are most ardent, I wouldnt know, im less concerned about the ardent part than I am about the violent part.

  • Mohjho

    What is a social elite?

  • duane

    Well, peti (#71), it was a question, not a statement.

    I’m no Bible scholar either, but it’s easy enough to find Jesus quoted as saying things like

    “Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth; but I say unto you, that ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek, turn to him the other also.”

    — Mathew 6:38,39

    ” But I say unto you, love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you.”

    — Matthew 6:44

    Of course, I can’t prove that these words were spoken by Jesus, but let’s assume that they were, and someone scribbled them down more or less accurately. In any case, Christians supposedly believe that these are, in fact, the translated words of Jesus.

    The word “ardent” means “fervent” or “impassioned.” The word “adherent” means “someone who believes and helps to spread the doctrine of another.” So, I would have to conclude, putting two and two together, that while those using violence in the name of Christianity may be ardent, they are not ardent adherents to the one they profess to follow. They are ardently heretical, while not admitting it, and maybe, in the their ardor, not even realizing it.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    Yes, Duane, in theory, the “most ardent” followers should be wholly nonviolent. In theory.

    But yes, the phrase “most ardent” does imply “fanatical.” As it happens, the word ardent literally means “fiery,” which also implies zealousness.

  • Bliffle

    In a sense it’s no important whether islam is a violent religion or whether islam has been taken over by violent people. It’s almost irrelevant to those who want to avoid being hurt by a violent islamist.

  • Joan Bias

    Judaism, Christianity, and Islam are all violent. How could it be otherwise? The OT, the NT, and the Koran (each infallible and written by the creator of the universe) are all filled with horrors, exhortations to violence and precise descriptions of the tortures that will befall non-believers.

    It is well past time we discard this evil crap. To be a person of faith is to be a terrible, ignorant, dangerous person.

  • duane

    Bliffle: In a sense it’s no important whether islam is a violent religion or whether islam has been taken over by violent people.

    It probably does matter to non-violent followers of Islam whether or not their religion is perceived as being intrinsically violent. To people outside of Islam, it should be important to make a distinction between the teachings of their religion, the practices of its true adherents, and the practices of those killing in the name of Islam.

    It’s almost irrelevant to those who want to avoid being hurt by a violent islamist.

    Sure. But their are wider issues for those not facing imminent death. The odds that you or I will be killed by anyone, let alone some delusional jihadist with a bomb in his suitcase, are miniscule.

    Joan (#76), I share your bias to a degree. I agree to an extent with the “ignorance” part of your comment. But to say that the local churchgoers passing around fried chicken and potato salad at the Sunday afternoon potluck are “dangerous” is a bit of an exaggeration.

  • Joan Bias

    The book they believe in is dangerous, and their continued reverance for these holy books only perpetuates the power they hold over all of us. Sam Harris’ great book, End of Faith, has a wonderful argument against religious moderates that I couldn’t hope to do justice to here.

  • Dean

    The dangerous “christians” are those who follow Falwell and Robertson in believing that the sole reference to “Armageddon” in the Book of Revelation is their means to “salvation”.

    They say the hell with the Sermon on the Mount.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    It is well past time we discard this evil crap. To be a person of faith is to be a terrible, ignorant, dangerous person.

    So what? To be a person of NO faith is to be a terrible, ignorant, and dangerous person.

    Humans aren’t terrible, ignorant, and dangerous because of religion. They’re terrible, ignorant, and dangerous because they’re humans. And it’s not going to decrease because they stop believing in this or that ethos.

  • duane

    Michael, yeah, humans en masse may have a natural inclination towards ignorance. I don’t know about the “terrible” part. I’m not sure what “terrible” means in this context. But it could be argued that the various religious institutions provide a haven for ignorance. Religion justifies ignorance by purporting to decide what the important questions are, and by providing the answers. Religion nurtures ignorance by attempting to relegate worldly concerns to a tier that lies below spiritual concerns. In so doing, the followers of religion develop a far-sighted view of their own existence, but a short-sighted and narrowed view of their fellow man. This encourages complacency. Complacency begets ignorance.

    I am not saying that all believers are ignorant non-contributors to the advancement of humankind. There are exceptions, of course. But in general, as long as believers can stand back with their arms folded and say smirkingly, “Hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?” (I Corinthians 2:20), they will not feel conflicted by their own ignorance.

  • Joan Bias

    Proof, please.

  • Joan Bias

    I ask for proof of the statement about mankind’s inherent terribleness, ignorance, and danger.

  • zingzing

    joan–the 20th century will do.

  • Joan Bias

    I’m afraid you’ll have to explain.

  • zingzing

    um… genocide, nuclear war, religious warfare, war of attrition, serial murder, apartheid…

  • Joan Bias

    Also, heavy metal was mixed with hip hop to create a new hybrid form of music, rap metal. None of this proves man’s inherent nastiness.

    Religious warfare, for instance, is caused by religion.

    I mean actual proof.

  • zingzing

    stalin, mao, hitler, pol pot, idi amin, milosevic, agha mohammed yahya khan, hussein…

  • zingzing

    if you’re trying to say that man is not necesarilly evil, i’ll agree with you there.

    but man is quite capable of evil and has been throughout history, regardless of any religion, and will continue to produce disgusting amounts of evilness in the forseeable future.

    what about wars of attrition and apartheid and genocide aren’t fucking evil?

  • zingzing

    isn’t… hrm. grammar got really fucked on that last sentence.

  • Joan Bias

    I asked for proof that man is inherently evil, not just a list of bad things.

    The atrocities you list are completely tied to religion and the lack of rational thinking it promotes.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    An abridged list of atrocities, Joan, that were perpetrated irregardless of religion:

    – Slavery
    – The death camp at Andersonville, Georgia, during the U.S. Civil War
    – The genocide of Native Americans
    – Jack the Ripper
    – Racism and the subjugation of various ethnic/racial/gender groups
    – The assassinations of Presidents Lincoln, Garfield, McKinley, and Kennedy
    – The exploitation of workers by wealthy businessmen with no regard for safety, health, overexertion, child labor, or standard of living
    – The Russo-Japanese War
    – The assassination of Franz Ferdinand
    – World War I
    – The St. Valentine’s Day Massacre
    – The Japanese invasion of Manchuria
    – The Japanese invasion of Nanking
    – Stalin’s Great Purge
    – The rise of Mussolini
    – The advent of the nuclear bomb
    – The entire Pacific war zone in World War II
    – The Korean War
    – The Suez Crisis
    – Race- and civil-rights-related violence
    – The Bay of Pigs invasion
    – The Vietnam War
    – McCarthyism
    – The assassination of Martin Luther King
    – The assassination of Medgar Evers
    – Albert De Salvo, the Boston Strangler
    – Charles Manson
    – Ed Gein
    – The Zodiac Killer
    – Watergate
    – School shooting after school shooting after school shooting after school shooting
    – The assassination of John Lennon
    – The attempted assassination of Ronald Reagan
    – Iran Contra
    – The international drug trade
    – The crack epidemic
    – Gang warfare
    – White collar crime
    – AIDS
    – Saddam Hussein’s gassing of the Kurds
    – Mao Tse Tung’s Cultural Revolution
    – Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge
    – Idi Amin
    – Apartheid
    – Jeffrey Dahmer
    – Ted Bundy
    – Tiananmen Square

    The list goes on and on.

  • zingzing

    apartheid is religion? war of attrition is religion? nuclear war… religious?

    some genocide is religious… some is racist.

    how are these all “completely tied to religion?”

    btw- i despise organized religion as well… but there are other evils in this world, #1 among them being man and human nature. (of course, man is capable of considerable good as well, but that isn’t what is being argued.)

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    Of course man is capable of considerable good. For that matter, so is organized religion. All I’m saying is, if religion were completely eradicated from the human mind and life tomorrow, we’d find some other reason to kill and ruin each other.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    Perhaps I should also clarify: I don’t think that humans are inherently evil. I think they are inherently flawed, which makes them capable of, and defined by, great good and great evil. And since they are so defined, everything they create is naturally defined by and capable of great good and greate evil.

    But if religion is inherently evil–and I don’t believe it is–it can only be because man created it that way.

  • zingzing

    hmm?

  • zingzing

    ahh. good.

  • Joan Bias

    OK, so let’s just keep believing the bullshit we’ve always believed and which is killing us. Ater all, we’d probably just come up with some other reason to kill each other.

    Anything to avoid actually discussing and disproving the religious dogma that will undoubtedly lead us to blow each other up.
    By the way, your list of atrocities is rife with religion. Almost every item on it is inextricably tied up with irreason and religious dogma.

    The genocide of Native Americans? Slavery? The drug trade? AIDS? These are all rooted in or exacerbated by religion.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    Kid yourself if you’d like, Joan.

  • zingzing

    joan! how the hell is aids religious? or any of the other things i asked you?

    yes–religion is dangerous! obvious! not a question! moreso today than ever! one of the greatest evils on this planet! all true!

    but, religion is just a man-made construct, like power, and religion is nothing more than power, and power will always be fought over, if it is called “religion” or whatever, and it will be fought over in the same way.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com Michael J. West

    Zing, I’m not even sure it’s about power–it’s about difference.

    It’s human nature to hate and fear and attack whatever’s different from ourselves. Religion is one, but if it ain’t religion, it’s skin color. Or culture. Or anatomy. Or sexual persuasion. Or what team you like. Or who you’re voting for for president. Or what you fucking do for a living.

    The only possible way to prevent people from hating and fearing and attacking each other is to make them all absolutely alike in every possible way. Trying to get rid of religion or political parties or other things conceived by humans is attacking a symptom, not a disease.

  • zingzing

    yes, but why do we hate, fear and attack that which is different? i’d say it’s to gain control over it, to neutralize or destroy its potential power.

  • http://www.ladydragonfyre.com Lady Dragonfyre

    zingzing:

    joan! how the hell is aids religious?

    The disease isn’t, but religious beliefs cause its spread.

    In Africa for example, people following the indigenous religions believe that men and women who fail to contribute to the propagation of the village will be denied a place in the ancestral village when they die.

    PLUS, in a part of the world that has such a high infant mortality, you can’t really afford to use contraception when you want to make damn that you’ll have at least one child that will survive childhood.

    Thus, contraception/protection is often discouraged in their circles.

    Even a sizeable percentage of Westernized (and predominantly Catholic) Africans don’t believe in using protection because of their beliefs.

    This is partially why Africa has the highest HIV infection rates in the world.

    Of course, it also doesn’t help when the president of South Africa publicly rejects the notion that AIDS is caused by a virus, but that’s another story.

    However, while I personally believe that religion is the “opiate of the masses,” I DON’T think that it’s at the root of all the ignorance and evil in the world; the crazy assholes who use it to justify atrocities are.

    I imagine that if you murder a bunch of people, it’s much easier on the conscience if you convince yourself that God wanted you to do it.

  • zingzing

    lady– ok, i can see that… religion has made it worse, that is true. but it wasn’t religion that created aids. it was monkey-sex! or at least monkey-blood… much more fun if it was monkey-sex! you know, like doin’ a monkey!

    anyway. you can’t blame aids on religion. you can blame SOME of its spread on religion, although i would guess that it would be a problem regardless of religious ignorance.

    still. apartheid? attrition? i’m sure religion had some part in these, or at least people justified some part of this stuff with religion… but… come on now. religion is just a facet the human psyche. it’s just an excuse at hand.

  • Dean

    So let’s just totally revert to the law of the jungle.

    Survival of the fittest.

    Isn’t that the way it was before the Barbarians found religion?

    The problem is many still behave like barbarians.

  • Ruvy in Jerusalem

    I looked at the title of this article and didn’t want to read it, but thought, “well I’m going to sleep soon anyway…”

    Mr. Bambenek has a problem that he doesn’t really deal with at all in this piece and the resulting comments reflect this. And then there is one big point that sticks out like a sore thumb.

    First, he deals with Islam as if it is a monolitihic Borg ship. The result is that all of the other religions are spoken of this way, and finally religion itself is condemned…

    Then there is the part of his piece tht really made me smile. He has trouble condeemning Islam as violent not because it is or isn’t, but because doing so would possibly condemn Christianity as violent as well. He realizes – without coming out and saying so – that a religion that seeks for everyone else to be its adherent is by its nature going to have elemnets of violence in it to accomplish the world conquest it desires. This is as true of Christianity as well as Islam in a general sense. Any Jew who really knows his history knows just what a vile and violent religion Christianity can be.

  • Chuck The Great

    Religion itself does not cause violence, but the conflict between contrasting ideas can cause violence. This can occur within a religion or between diffrent religions.
    For example,
    -the conflict between the protestant princes of Germany and the Papacy following the division of the catholic church
    -Secterian violence betwean sunnis and shiites

    So even if religion does not preach violence, it has inadvertantly caused violence.

  • Baronius

    I can do this one. AIDS is related to sexual morality, which is related to religion, which was the subject of “The Mission”, which starred Robert DeNiro, who was in “Sleepers” with Kevin Bacon!

    In case I’m being too subtle, let me state this clearly: religion is a part of every human society. In any subject, one can find an element of religion that touches on it. So it isn’t enough to say that a society had both religion and violence. You have to examine the role that religion played.

    That’s why we’re able to have this conversation, by the way. We may still interpret the 1,350 years of evidence differently. For example, Muslim violence is much more prevalent in Arab regions than in, say, Indonesia. On the other hand, Palestinian Christians don’t explode in public places, indicating that religion is more important than culture.

    The question of “ardent devotion” misses the point, I think. It’s fair to ask if violent extremism is a misreading of a religion, or its natural tendency. The Amish didn’t attack the World Trade Center, after all.

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    Ruvy-

    I don’t deal with Islam… **at all**. I deal with those who condemn Islam as violent as if it were some big Borg ship.

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    And the comments that Christianity can be vile and violent are just as true of Judaism.

  • Josh

    #102:
    Perhaps as a survival trait — in order to protect themselves, people began preemptive attacks against different groups.

    Maybe wrong, but just a thought.

  • http://www.ladydragonfyre.com Lady Dragonfyre

    Zingzing: lady– ok, i can see that… religion has made it worse, that is true. but it wasn’t religion that created aids. it was monkey-sex! or at least monkey-blood… much more fun if it was monkey-sex! you know, like doin’ a monkey!

    anyway. you can’t blame aids on religion. you can blame SOME of its spread on religion, although i would guess that it would be a problem regardless of religious ignorance.

    still. apartheid? attrition? i’m sure religion had some part in these, or at least people justified some part of this stuff with religion… but… come on now. religion is just a facet the human psyche. it’s just an excuse at hand.

    That’s what I meant – that religious beliefs are only a contributing factor in the spread of HIV in Africa. There are tons of cultural factors, such as handling and eating bush meat. Still, you can’t blame the poor ol’ monkeys! If HIV/SIV originated in primates, they’d carry those viruses without getting sick. There has to be another species out there that does.

    It’s just that some people would rather put all the blame on sexual “immorality,” or chalk it up to predictions contained in the book of Revelations than accept the fact that A.) shit just happens sometimes, and B.) There’s a lot we don’t know about the world around us.

    We feel more comfortable when we have, or think we have, all the answers. It’s simply human nature. It just saddens me that human beings very adept at using religion to brainwash themselves into believing all gays should die, or that blowing themselves up glorifies God.

    Human beings ARE responsible for their own actions and choices, but considering history, I think humanity would’ve been better off without religion all together. We’re already good at hindering our own progress; we don’t need help.

    If there is a god(s) up there, he’s probably been laughing his ass off for the past 10,000+ years as we continue to make fools of ourselves. If you’ve read the Iliad, you know that the ancient Greeks certainly believed that.

  • Joan Bias

    Ruvy is completely correct about the nature of christianity and violence. The Catholic Church has encouraged Anti-Semitism and violence from its very founding.

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    Point of reference, at the very founding of the Catholic Church, it was persecuted by adherents of Judaism. One such persecutor is even characterized in the Acts of the Apostles as attemping genocide against the group. His name was Saul… you may know him better as Paul.

    We’ll skip past all the favors we bestowed on the Jews during WWII, at great danger to those clerics involved.

    But again, trying to keep score is precisly NOT THE POINT. And in fact, Joan, you comment precisely demonstrates my point… the knee-jerk unthinking condemnation of religion because of a few instances of violence that, at least in Christianity’s case, are against the clear teaching of the Catholic Church.

  • Dean

    Joan,

    “The Catholic Church has encouraged Anti-Semitism and violence from its very founding.“

    As usual, there is another side to the story.

    For your edification…

    The earliest Christians suffered persecution at the hands of the Jewish leadership of the day, commencing with Jesus himself.

    Persecution of Jesus’ followers continued after his death. Peter and John were imprisoned by the Jewish leadership, including high priest Ananias. All the apostles were imprisoned by the high priest and other Sadducees. The apostles were then taken before the Sanhedrin again, but then freed them, after having flogged them.

    The stoning of Stephen was done by the members of the Sanhedrin. Stephen’s execution was followed by a major persecution of Christians, led by the Pharisee named Paul of Tarsus throwing many Christians into prison. This persecution continued until Paul converted to Christianity. The Jews” in Damascus then tried to kill Paul. Another attempt on his life was made by a group of Hellenistic Jews whom he debated while in or around Jerusalem.

    During the Bar Kochba Rebellion of AD 135, Christians refused to fight, as a result of which they were commanded to be punished severely, if they did not deny Jesus as the Messiah and blaspheme him.

    In pre-Islamic Yemen, the Jewish king Dhu Nuwas persecuted Christians and massacred their communities in Najran in 524. In the early sixth century, Khosrau II, King of Persia invaded Asia Minor and Syria. The Jews joined the Persians. The Tiberian Jews, with those of Nazareth and the mountain cities of Galilee, marched on Jerusalem with the Persian division commanded by Shahrbaraz. Later they were joined by the Jews of southern Palestine; and supported by some Arabs, the united forces took Jerusalem in 614. Ninety thousand Christians were killed.

    The Jews took over Palestine, destroyed the monasteries in the country, and expelled or killed the monks. Bands of Jews from Jerusalem, Tiberias, Galilee, Damascus, and even from Cyprus, united and undertook an incursion against Tyre, having been invited by the 4,000 Jewish inhabitants of that city to surprise and massacre the Christians on Easter night. The Jewish army is said to have consisted of 20,000 men. The expedition, however, backfired, as the Christians of Tyre learned of the impending danger, and seized the 4,000 Tyrian Jews as hostages. Then the Jewish invaders destroyed the churches around Tyre, an act which the Christians avenged by killing two thousand of their Jewish prisoners. The besiegers, to save the remaining prisoners, withdrew. According to the Jewish Encyclopedia, ‘The immediate results of these wars filled the Jews with joy.’

  • Joan Bias

    Hey, Dean, looks like you, me and Wikipedia all agree about the violence caused by religion.

    Thanks for the kind words.

    And Mr. Bambenek, I’m not sure you’re using “knee-jerk” or “unthinking” correctly. Or perhaps you have me confused with the straw men from your post. But I assure you my conclusions are well-considered.

    Your comment about “a few incidents of violence” indicates either total lack of any study in this area or a perverse sense of humor.

    Sincerely,
    Torquemada

  • zingzing
  • zingzing

    hrm. that didn’t work right. sorry for the nakie.

  • Bliffle

    Religion imbues it’s adherent with the certain belief that he is doing gods will, and thus every atrocity is justified.

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    I think if you took a look at most religions, they certainly frame the context of God’s will. I can’t speak for other religions, but I’m quite sure there is no justification in Christianity that would allow me to rape my wife and consider it God’s will. Sure, that doesn’t stop people, but are we really going to judge the whole by those who are in clear violation of the teaching that the rest accept and take seriously?

    At what point did we start letting the exceptions drive the rule?

  • http://www.ladydragonfyre.com Lady Dragonfyre

    John,

    Actually, I think there’s something in the Old Testament that if a woman doesn’t do her “wifely” duty, the man has a right to take it by force.

    Frighteningly enough, marital rape only became a crime in recent times.

  • Dean

    LadyOnFire:

    “Actually, I think there’s something in the Old Testament that if a woman doesn’t do her “wifely” duty, the man has a right to take it by force.”

    Your “think there’s something” could not be found in the Old Testament .

    It makes a good story but where did you find it?

    Did you confuse it with the New Testament?

    “Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her.” — Ephesians 5:25

    “Husbands, love your wives and do not be harsh with them.” — Colossians 3:19

  • Joan Bias

    The Bible can be quite contradictory on many matters (I’m not sure why God wouldn’t be completely clear). The selection and treatment of wives is one of them.

    Check the story told in Judges 19:22-29 for more Biblical wisdom about wifely rape.

    Deuteronomy 22:13-21 tells a lovely story of marital bliss.

    Deut 22:23-24 has nice things to say about a woman: That if she’s raped and doesn’t cry out loud enough, she should be stoned.

    The justification for rape is indeed in the Bible, as is the justification for the torture and killing of heretics and abunch of other not-nice things. Of course, whether one chooses to interpret any of this ancient, translated and retranslated crap literally is one’s own business. But the problem with scripture is that so many of its possible interpretations (often including the literal ones) can be used to justify all kinds of horrible shit in defense of the faith.

    Like Jesus’ own words in John 15:6.

  • zingzing

    ooooh! snap! take that, christians!

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    First, if you are going to try to make generalizations about Christian teaching, I wouldn’t use only OT verses.

    Second, I certainly wouldn’t use similes, particularly ones that involved eternal damnation or eternal salvation, as having any concrete application in regards to warfighting.

  • Joan Bias

    Your first sentence made no literal sense thanks to bad grammar, but I’ll take a guess at what you meant:

    I made no generalizations about Christian teachings.
    The only generalization I made about the Bible was that it “can be contradictory about many matters.” If this is disputed, I can cite verses (Exodus 15:3 and Romans 15:33, or Matt 27:46,50, Luke 23:46, John 19:30) but I think it’s a pretty widely accepted concept.

    And thanks for the advice about not using OT sources. Please note the other portions of the Bible which I can ignore, even though they are inerrant and written by God. Then see Matthew 5:18 for some of Jesus’ ideas on the matter.

    As to your second sentence, I cite myself in Joan 123:
    “But the problem with scripture is that so many of its possible interpretations (often including the literal ones) can be used to justify all kinds of horrible shit in defense of the faith.”

  • http://jcb.pentex-net.com John Bambenek

    There is nothing, absolutely nothing, contradictory in the Bible, when read in the light in which it was written. Sure, you might be able to show some English verses that appear in contradiction, but since it’s a Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic book, the English implications are irrelevant.

    And generally speaking Christianity does supercede some OT teachings, that is made perfectly clear also. For instance, we don’t sacrifice animals. This isn’t news. That’s why I said **only** OT verses, not don’t use OT verses **at all**.

    Third, your apparent ability to discover grammatical problems where they do not exist makes me question your command of the language.

  • Joan Bias

    Well, actually, English isn’t my first language. But I’ll try to help anyway.

    Hint: What is the subject of your first clause? What is the subject of your second?

  • Joan Bias

    Please explain the translation errors in the verses I cited, Mr. Bambenek. And logically, if “the English implications are irrelevent,” than how are those who do not speak those other languages to learn about God? How did you, assuming you don’t speak Greek? (and apologies if you do).
    Also, please provide a list of OT verses that are superceded by the NT (animal sacrifice, check — what ae the others), and explain in light of Matthew 5:17-18.

  • Joan Bias

    In my second sentence of 129, “then” is meant, not “than.” And in the last, “are,” not “ae.” Sorry for the mistakes. Must slow down and preview.

  • http://murasaki.blog-city.com Purple Tigress

    Some find that the Koran is a book of peace.

    Of course, if we do not cite quotes and translations it is hard to tell since I know from reading “The Tale of Genji” in an original translation and then a more modern translation and the original text in Japanese that there is a world of difference.

  • Joan Bias

    The Koran is teeming with hate. On almost every page, it teaches observant Muslims to despise and scorn nonbelievers, and sometimes just to fucking kill them and be done with it.

    I expect nobody to believe me or take my word for any of this, but rather to read it for yourself (and the Bible, too). In whatever language you speak.

  • Dean

    Joan:

    Why the Old Testament and the New Testament differ…

    “The time is coming,” declares the Lord, “when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah.

    — Jeremiah 31:31

    6 But the ministry Jesus has received is as superior to theirs as the covenant of which he is mediator is superior to the old one, and it is founded on better promises. For if there had been nothing wrong with that first covenant, no place would have been sought for another.

    — Hebrews 8:6-7

    By calling this covenant “new,” he has made the first one obsolete; and what is obsolete and aging will soon disappear.

    — Hebrews 8:13

    One is “New” — the other is “Obsolete“.

    Does that help?

  • Joan Bias

    And here’s the opposite point of view:

    2 Tim 3:16

    Matthew 5:17-18

    We could trade Bible verses all day. That is part of my point, in fact. You can find justification for your point of view, and I for its opposite. But the whole book is inerrant.

    I’m still waiting for the explanation of this or the two contradictions I cited in 126.

  • allah

    Becaus I am Allah, I command you all to fuck yourselves assholes

  • CC

    I have heard lot of nonsense about islam being non-violent.

    Let me tell you this. They celebrate something called bakri id. According to the religion, anyone who is affluent should sacrifice a goat to feed the homeless. Good thinking except for the part that you have to kill the goat yourself (or at least thats how they interpret it ). Its pretty brutal if you get to see it. Bear in mind that they are not butchers but regular citizens which behave in a manner no different from butchers.

    Non-violent? My ass!

  • Peacemaker

    This is a question to all muslims of the world…

    Just what the hell is your problem????

    Muslims against Hindus in Kashmir
    Muslims against Christians(US and UK) all over the world
    Muslims against Jews in Israel
    Muslims against Buddhists in Xinjiang(china)
    Muslims against Slavs in Chechnya

    Muslims cannot live in peace anywhere because their inherent mentality is that Islam is better and everyone should either convert or die.

    You are a sick bunch of people, a cancer for this world…and soon enough you will be wiped out off the face of this earth.

  • Jordan Richardson

    “Peacemaker,” is your name intentionally ironic or are you just a fucking idiot?

  • http://ex-conservative.blogspot.com Glenn Contrarian

    Peacemaker –

    Read your history. The religion that has killed more people in the Name of God than any other…is mainstream ‘Christianity’, counting as one those killed by Protestants and Catholics for not being one of the ‘true’ religion.

    Again, read your history – not just of the past few decades, but all the way back to when they took power in Rome. According to Gibbon in “Decline and Fall of Rome”, before Christians took power in Rome, they were completely pacifistic and would not retaliate even against physical violence and the threat of death. After they took power, things changed.

    The total death toll of murders committed by Muslims over the history of their religion, I’m sorry to say, doesn’t even come close to that of mainstream ‘Christianity’.

    And FYI, I am a Christian.

  • Jack Collins

    Joan Bias:

    Your reference to Matthew deserves to be quoted more fully to understand the message.

    17.”Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.

    18.I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished.

    19.Anyone who breaks one of the least of these commandments and teaches others to do the same will be called least in the kingdom of heaven, but whoever practices and teaches these commands will be called great in the kingdom of heaven.

    20.For I tell you that unless your righteousness surpasses that of the Pharisees and the teachers of the law, you will certainly not enter the kingdom of heaven.

    It’s about “righteousness.”

    Read the rest of the chapter for the referenced commandments which are not to be broken.

    They follow the repeated phrase:

    “Again, you have heard that it was said… ”

  • http://agusnizami.wordpress.com Agus Nizami

    See photos at: Is Islam the Most Violent Religion?.

    Hatred Against Islam

    Pope Benedict XVI quoted Emperor Manuel II Paleologos of the Byzantine Empire, the Orthodox Christian: “Show me just what Muhammad brought that was new and there you will find things only evil and inhuman, such as his command to spread by the sword the faith he preached.”*

    Samuel P Huntington: Islam is Number 1 Enemy

    Since Pre-Crusades until now many prominent Christians often describe Islam as evil and terrorist. Islam is their enemy that should be destroyed.

    *Source: BBC News.

    pizzaroSpreading Christianity by Sword

    Colonialism and Imperialism: From 15th – 20th Centuries Spain, Portuguese, British Kingdom, Dutch, and France invading Africa, Asia, and America for Gold, GOD, and Glory.

    Queen Isabella support exploration primarily to spread Christianity (MS Encarta, Spanish Empire).

    Livonian Order joined Teutonic Knights in forcing Slavs to convert to Christianity (MS Encarta, Military Religious Orders)

    Spreading Christianity with sword. Every warship has priests on it.

    “Explorers” such as Pizzaro and Cortez slaughtered many native people. Others make native people as slaves including the Afro-American.

    Hundreds of million people killed, enslaved, and wounded in Africa, Asia, Australia, and America

    Inquisition

    inquisitionEuropean countries spread their religious beliefs and eliminate other religions.

    Roman Catholic countries, particularly Spain, set out to convert non-Christian native peoples.

    Protestant countries also used religion as a motive for expansion. Beginning in the 19th century, Britain’s missionary movements served as a significant reason for that country’s colonial efforts

    Microsoft Encarta, Colonialism and Colonies

    Torture was used frequently during the Inquisition to obtain confessions of heresy

    MS Encarta, Inquisition

    Rob Land and Build Countries

    British Colonists robbed Aboriginal land and slaughtered them

    Microsoft Encarta, Aboriginal Australians

    The Indians slaughtered and become minority in US and Canada

    killingaboriginesBarbara Miller: ‘Declaring Australia Terra Nullius , uninhabited, and killing off any Aboriginal resistance to land seizure with superior weaponry, diseases, poisoned water-holes and flour laced with arsenic, the British settlers set up institutions and governments which have perpetrated their violent domination …’*

    US, Canada, and Australia are countries of successful invasion.

    “Civilization”

    Antonio’s Song, Michael Frank: The blankets they give the Indians only make them die

    The Whites give contaminated blankets to Indians to kill them

    banishingtheindians

    “The Trail of Tears”, Robert Lindneux, depicts the forced migration of Native Americans from the eastern US to the Indian Territory in Oklahoma during the 1830s and early 1840s.

    Among those peoples forced to make the journey on foot were the Cherokee, Creek, Choctaw, and Chickasaw. Many died on the long, hard journey

    Microsoft Encarta, Native Americans of North America

    “Civilization” #2

    woundedkneecreekmassacre

    U.S. Cavalry killed hundreds of Sioux men, women, and children who had fled to a camp along Wounded Knee Creek.

    Sand Creek Massacre

    1864, Colonel John M. Chivington and his soldiers killed 200 Cheyenne and Arapaho people, most of whom were still sleeping

    Microsoft Encarta, Native Americans of North America

    Slavery

    More than 10 million Africans forcibly transported to America for 200 years. For 1 captive there are 10 people died defending their family.

    Human cargo packed tightly that it was impossible to move

    Portuguese monopoly Slave Trade followed by British, Holland, France, Denmark, and the American colonies joined in transporting slaves from Africa to the New World.

    Who Start World War I?

    World War I: The First Bloody World War (1914-1918)

    +10 Million Soldiers died

    +20 Million Soldiers wounded

    Who start the war?

    France, Russia, Britain against Germany and Austro-Hungary. Mostly Christians.

    Not Muslim!

    Microsoft Encarta, World War I

    Who Start World War II?

    World War II: The Bloodiest War (1939-1945)

    55 Million people died

    Who start the war?

    France, Russia, Britain against Germany, Italy, and Japan. Mostly Christians.

    Not Muslim!

    Microsoft Encarta, World War II

    World War II Aftermath

    55 Million people died by the war waged by France, Russia, Britain, US against Germany, Italy, and Japan.

    Do you still think Islam is the most violent religion in the world?

    atombombinjapan

    Who Start Crusades War?

    Crusades War (1096-1291)

    Millions people died

    Who start the war?

    siegeofjerusalemWestern European Christians by Pope Urban II’s Order!

    Not Muslim!

    Microsoft Encarta, Crusades

    The Christians always slaughter many Muslims when they had victories (Kingdom of Heaven Movie).

    War by the Christians

    Not in the name of God?

    Siege of Jerusalem

    The western European Christian armies of the First Crusade surrounded the city of Jerusalem in June 1099. In mid-July, after a long siege, the Crusaders took the city by storm and massacred many of its inhabitants.

    Microsoft Encarta, Crusades

    Bible Verses on War

    1 Samuel 15

    1 Then Samuel said to Saul, “The LORD sent me to anoint you as king over His people, over Israel; now therefore, listen to the words of the LORD. 2 “Thus says the LORD of hosts, ‘I will punish Amalek for what he did to Israel, how he set himself against him on the way while he was coming up from Egypt. 3 ‘Now go and strike Amalek and utterly destroy all that he has, and do not spare him; but put to death both man and woman, child and infant, ox and sheep, camel and donkey.'”

    New American Standard Bible

    Hosea 13:16 “they shall fall by the sword: their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with children shall be ripped up.”

    Exodus 32:27 “Thus sayeth the Lord God of Israel, Put every man his sword by his side, . . . and slay every man his brother, . . . companion, . . . neighbor.”

    I Samuel 6:19 ” . . . and the people lamented because the Lord had smitten many of the people with a great slaughter.”

    New American Standard Bible

    TemplarsThe Templars, Hospitalers, Teutonic Knights are Military Religious Orders

    MS Encarta, Military Religious Orders

    The Misquoted Quran Verses 1

    “Those of them with whom thou madest a treaty, and, then at every opportunity they break their treaty, and they keep not duty (to Allah)” [Quran 8:56]

    Make ready for them all thou canst of (armed) force and of horses tethered, that thereby ye may dismay the enemy of Allah and your enemy, and others beside them whom ye know not. Allah knoweth them. Whatsoever ye spend in the way of Allah it will be repaid to you in full, and ye will not be wronged” [Quran 8:60]

    “And if they incline to peace, incline thou also to it, and trust in Allah. Lo! He is the Hearer, the Knower” [Quran 8:61]

    The Noble Qur’an, Islamasoft Solution

    The Misquoted Quran Verses 2

    “Those who disbelieve and turn (men) from the way of Allah, He rendereth their actions vain” [Quran 47:1]

    “Now when ye meet in battle those who disbelieve, then it is smiting of the necks until, when ye have routed them, then making fast of bonds; and afterward either grace or ransom till the war lay down its burdens. That (is the ordinance). And if Allah willed He could have punished them (without you) but (thus it is ordained) that He may try some of you by means of others. And those who are slain in the way of Allah, He rendereth not their actions vain” [Quran 47:4]

    The Noble Qur’an, Islamasoft Solution

    The Misquoted Quran Verses 3

    “They long that ye should disbelieve even as they disbelieve, that ye may be upon a level (with them). So choose not friends from them till they forsake their homes in the way of Allah; if they turn back (to enmity) then take them and kill them wherever ye find them, and choose no friend nor helper from among them,” [Quran 4:89]

    “Except those who seek refuge with a people between whom and you there is a covenant, or (those who) come unto you because their hearts forbid them to make war on you or make war on their own folk. Had Allah willed He could have given them power over you so that assuredly they would have fought you. So, if they hold aloof from you and wage not war against you and offer you peace, Allah alloweth you no way against them” [Quran 4:90]

    The Noble Qur’an, Islamasoft Solution

    The Misquoted Quran Verses 4

    “And remember, when ye were few and reckoned feeble in the land and were in fear lest men should extirpate you…” [Quran 8:26]

    And when those who disbelieve plot against thee (O Muhammad) to wound thee fatally, or to kill thee or to drive thee forth; they plot, but Allah (also) plotteth; and Allah is the best of plotters” [Quran 8:30]

    Tell those who disbelieve that if they cease (from persecution of believers) that which is past will be forgiven them; but if they return (thereto) then the example of the men of old hath already gone (before them, for a warning)” [Quran 8:38]

    “And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is all for Allah. But if they cease, then lo! Allah is Seer of what they do” [Quran 8:39]

    Just read the verses related before and after to understand the context.

    The Noble Qur’an, Islamasoft Solution

    Islam the Peaceful Religion

    “There is no compulsion in religion…” [Quran 2:256]

    “…So long as they are true to you, be true to them. Lo! Allah loveth those who keep their duty” [Quran 9:7]

    “…So, if they hold aloof from you and wage not war against you and offer you peace, Allah alloweth you no way against them” [Quran 4:90]

    “And if they incline to peace, incline thou also to it, and trust in Allah. Lo! He is the Hearer, the Knower” [Quran 8:61]

    “There is no good in much of their secret conferences save (in) him who enjoineth alms giving and kindness and peace making among the people. Whoso doeth that, seeking the good pleasure of Allah, We shall bestow on him a vast reward” [Quran 4:114]

    The Noble Qur’an, Islamasoft Solution

    Defensive War Only

    muslimskilledbyisraelsoldiers

    “Fight in the way of Allah against those who fight against you, but begin not hostilities. Lo! Allah loveth not, aggressors” [Quran 2:190]

    “And those who, when great wrong is done to them, defend themselves, The guerdon of an ill deed is an ill the like thereof. But whosoever pardoneth and amendeth, his wage is the affair of Allah. Lo! He loveth not wrong doers

    And whoso defendeth himself after he hath suffered wrong for such, there is no way (of blame) against them” [Quran 42:39-41]

    The Noble Qur’an, Islamasoft Solution

    The First 3 Big wars: Badr War, Uhud War, and Khandaq War happened near Madina (Muslim Capital) when the Infidel of Mecca attacked the Muslims.

    After the 3 attacks, The Muslims conquered Mecca with almost no bloodshed except for a few war criminals

    The war between Muslims against Roman and Persian Empire also started by the Roman in Mu’tah War

    Muhammad Durra’s father helplessly try to protect his son from Israel soldiers

    Islam Gives Freedom

    Islam freed the people from Byzantines and Sassanids occupation and heavy taxes.

    “During the first years of the Umayyad caliphate the jizyah was significantly less than the heavy taxes that had been exacted by the Byzantines and the Sassanids. Therefore, it probably did not seem particularly onerous to most of the Caliph’s subjects.

    In fact, compared with conditions under the Byzantines and Sassanids, the period of the Arab Umayyad dynasty (661-751) was one of extraordinary religious and cultural tolerance for the non-Muslim subject populations

    MS Encarta, Internationalization of Islam, By Richard Foltz

    Muslims as War Victims

    Million Muslims killed by Christians during Crusades war

    Million Muslims killed during 15th-20th centuries colonialism

    Thousands Muslims slaughtered and raped in Bosnia Herzegovina

    muslimlittlegirlkilledbyisraelsoldiers

    Million Muslims killed in invasion in Afghanistan and Iraq by US and its Allies.

    Muslims slaughtered and treated as second class citizen by Israel

    Many Muslim women and children in Palestine killed by Israel.

    It is a war against terrorists, they said….

  • http://www.EurocriticsMagazine.com Christopher Rose

    Agus, it doesn’t matter which religious community has done the most killing, what matters is that the three monotheistic groups known as Judaism, Christianity and Islam are all victims of the god cult and that is what is the threat to all humanity.

  • meowmix

    You can only judge a religion by the sum teachings, legacies and actions of its followers.

    Regardless of what the Q’ran says, the fact that Muslims still honour murderers as martyrs, condone warful acts in the name of Allah and preach that it is the man’s RIGHT and RESPONSIBILITY to use violence against his wives says something to me.

    I used to be pretty neutral on the subject of Islam…even AFTER 9/11. I myself am not Christian and I believe that a person has the right to practice any faith they choose so long as they are not harming anyone by doing so.

    That was until a friend and roomate of mine converted to Islam and I started dropping her off at masjid.

    NEVER have I heard so much violent rhetoric uttered. At first, the members of her masjid were really wary of me and kept most talk to themselves and were cordial but stand-offish. In time, as they got to know me and became comfortable with me, the truth began to come out: Talk about “Insults to Islaam” and exclamations of how people–be it the US president or entire sections of western peoples–should be annihilated and made to suffer for everything from “indecency” to (perceived) acts of heresy against “The One True Faith.”

    It seems that while Christians (regardless of how utterly STUPID they are) have been able to adapt and accept other people’s faiths, Islaam makes no concessions. You are either with them or you are The Enemy. Period.

    I know a bit about the history of Islam and I must say: what a shame. There was a time where Muslims were the brightest, most forward-thinking culture on the planet. Emphasis on exploration and harmony and the Sciences…It is a shame that modern-day Islam is no longer a culture of thinkers and doctors and explorers, but have now become a culture of violent rhetoric and silly dogma.

    Just because you FEEL something, does not make it true. And it ESPECIALLY does not give you the right to judge and execute punishment against your fellow man who does not FEEL the same devotion for your beliefs.

    That’s my 0.02 as someone who HAS INDEED read much of the Q’ran AND been exposed to inner Muslim culture in only the Western world (Canada and US). Take it how you will.

    Thank you.

  • Amir

    Have you read these verses in the Qur’an?

    2: 89 The curse of Allah is on the infidels.

    2: 191 Kill them [the infidels] wherever you find them and drive them out from wherever they drove you out … and do not fight with them at the Sacred Mosque [in Mecca] until they fight with you, then kill them, for such is the penalty for infidels.

    2: 193 Fight with them until the struggle is over and there is no religion except Islam.

    3: 12 Say to the infidels: you shall be conquered and driven to hell.

    3: 85 No religion but Islam is acceptable …

    4: 34 Because men support women …, good women should be obedient … and for those women who are disobedient and ill mannered, then admonish them and if they refuse to obey and to behave properly, then let them sleep alone and beat them.

    4: 56 As for the infidels who reject our message, we shall burn them and as often as their skins are burned off, we shall give them new skins so that they may suffer the same punishment again.

    4: 76 Muslims fight for Allah and infidels fight for Satan, therefore fight the friends of Satan, for the way of Satan is surely weak.

    4: 101 When you travel abroad, there is no fault if you shorten your prayers for fear that the infidels may distress you, for surely the infidels are your enemies.

    5: 33 Those who resist Allah and Muhammad and cause trouble in the land shall be punished by killing or crucifying them or by cutting off their hands and feet on opposite sides of the body or by imprisoning them.

    5: 38 The man or woman who steals shall have their hands cut off as their deserved punishment from Allah.

    5: 60 Shall I tell you about them who suffer Allah’s wrath the most? They are the Jews whom Allah has cursed, upon whom he has visited his wrath, and whom he has converted into apes and swine, for they serve Satan. They are the worst and most grievous in error.

    7: 182 Those who reject our commandments, we shall ambush stealthily.

    8: 12 I shall strike terror into the hearts of the infidels. Therefore, strike off their heads and the fingertips of all of them.

    8: 39 Fight the infidels until there is no religion but Islam.

    8: 65 Oh Muhammad, urge the Muslims to war. Twenty of them can conquer two hundred infidels and a hundred of them can conquer a thousand infidels.

    9: 5 When the sacred months have passed, kill the infidels wherever you find them and take them captives and besiege them and ambush them, but if they become Muslims, leave them alone.

    9: 29 Fight those who reject Allah or the final judgment or do not forbid what Allah forbids, or follow Islam, but spare those who are “people of the Book” [Jews and Christians] provided that they pay to the Muslims the annual jizya (humiliation) tax in acknowledgment of the superiority of Muslims and their own abasement.

    9: 33 Allah sent his messenger [Muhammad] with guidance and with the religion of truth to prevail over all other religions.

    9: 111 Allah has purchased from the Muslims their persons and property in exchange for the promise of Paradise so that they may fight to kill and be killed in the cause of Allah …

    9: 123 Oh Muslims, fight the infidels around you and let them know how tough you are.

    40: 10 Surely those infidels who have been called upon to convert to Islam and who have rejected that call shall know Allah’s hatred which is far greater than their hatred of themselves.

    45: 11 This is a warning to infidels who reject Islam: they shall be punished for their own corruption.

    47: 4 When you engage the infidels in battle, cut off their heads until you have defeated them, take them prisoners and afterwards you may release them or hold them for ransom.

    48: 29 Muhammad is the messenger of Allah and his followers are tough on the infidels.

    76: 4 Surely we have prepared for the infidels chains and shackles and burning fire.

  • tlh

    I think all religions need to be respected but yes whtz wrong is bombing innocent ppl.thats wht shuld be pulled out not considering one religion to be good or bad.wht di u say?

  • Washington

    Nancy, Is it a violent religion? It is not decided by what was said in Qu’ran. It is answered by its believers’ actions! Jusr read the news! Why do the religion’s believers commit so much violence?

  • moshe kaufman

    i am starting to move away from the belief that islam in and of itself breeds violence.i am starting to lose this perspective because historically islam (like christianity but not judaism)has been used for terible acts of inhumanity but also for much good.for example turkey is an islamic country but it is relativly peaceful and also kuwait is an islamic country and they love the united states.

  • moshe kaufman

    also before you say something like “why do the religion’s followers commit so much violence?”well i am a jew my people have been butchered,slaughtered,and massacared for thousands of years in CHRISTIAN europe.nonetheless i respect all peoples religions(half my family is comepeltely christian)but i do beleive that my religion is the one true faith and that if all non jews follow the seven noahide laws(don’tkill,don’t steal,don’t be sexually immoral,don’t misuse the name of god,which is adonai by the way,don’t eat the limb from a living animal,don’t pray to idols,and do set up courts of justice)then they will go to heaven.we do NOT believe that you need to become jewish to go to heaven.we welcome sincere converts with open arms but we DO NOT prostelitize our faith.

  • TheFatPanda

    One thing I notice, whenever a discussion about the violence of religion comes into play, is how often people cite things that certain groups have done to other groups as proof of a religions violent nature (i.e. Crusades, Inquisition etc.)
    However, this is a logical fallacy. For just because someone claims to be of a certain group or acting in a particular way, doesnt mean they are. For instance, just because the crusaders or the catholics thought they were “doing God’s work”, does not, in point of fact, mean that they were. If one were to be honest about it, the teachings of Jesus are antithetical with such practices. Whether you are a christian or not, does not depend soley on whether you call yourself one, in my opinion. So, have many atrocities been commited IN THE NAME of christianity? Certainly, but there is a difference between the practitioner and the practice.
    One only needs to READ what jesus was teaching to see that he would never condone such actions.
    So, my suggestion for those wishing to use any religion as an example of its violence or non-violent nature, rather than looking at the worshipers, simply read what the holy documents for any particular faith says.

    That being said, one can certainly maintain a VERY distinct difference between islam and christianity. Nowhere does jesus command his followers to strike down infidels or make war upon them. Yet there it is, in black an white, in the koran. Does this automatically mean that islam must be violent in order to be practiced according to its book? Not necessarily, I suppose the practitioners themselves make that choice. But it is interesting to point out, when comparing just the teachings of the two religions (islam and christianity), one commands violence, and one commands love and peace.

    Just my 2 cents

  • http://blogcritics.org/politics/article/is-islam-a-violent-religion/ TM

    Islam is not a violent religion and to even think of it i have read the Quran and it clearly says “Those who hurt others, God will hurt him”
    Also have you ever thought that there were even muslim families living in the twin towers if all muslims were terrorists then there wouldn’t be any muslims in the twin towers at the time when the plane crashed

  • http://delibernation.com Silas Kain

    Oh, Jesus, here we go again. Islam is not a violent religion. Christianity is not a violent religion. Violence has been perpetrated by BOTH religions which teach us to kneel before the firmament and bow our heads low to the ground so that we may not see the truth which is there before us.

  • http://media-islam.or.id Agus Nizami

    Who Start World War I?

    World War I: The First Bloody World War (1914-1918)

    +10 Million Soldiers died

    +20 Million Soldiers wounded

    Who start the war?

    France, Russia, Britain against Germany and Austro-Hungary. Mostly Christians.

    Not Muslim!

    Microsoft Encarta, World War I

    Who Start World War II?

    atombombinhiroshima

    World War II: The Bloodiest War (1939-1945)

    55 Million people died

    Who start the war?

    France, Russia, Britain against Germany, Italy, and Japan. Mostly Christians.

    Not Muslim!

    Microsoft Encarta, World War II

    World War II Aftermath

    55 Million people died by the war waged by France, Russia, Britain, US against Germany, Italy, and Japan.

    Do you still think Islam is the most violent religion in the world?

    atombombinjapan

    Who Start Crusades War?

    Crusades War (1096-1291)

    Millions people died

    Who start the war?

    siegeofjerusalemWestern European Christians by Pope Urban II’s Order!

    Not Muslim!

    Do you still think Islam is the most violent religion in the world?

    Read more here.

  • asdsad

    U are all wrong Prophey Mohumad (may peace be upon him) was peaceful merciful just like Allah.
    so u guys stop be rascet to my religion
    GOD!

  • Z’d

    Every religion has had its share of bloodshed in the past, from the dawn of age to the age of civilization. Wether it be the Koran or the Bible, each has had its brand of violence dotted down in History both Muslims and Christians alike.
    We Christians should not pass Judgement on Muslims and their religious ethics when we also have had a very bloody unethical past, filled with violence and murder in the name of our God.
    Here are a few scriptures with such gruesome novelty that if Christians lived day by day as Muslims did through the Bible, we would be branded as savages.

    When at War…

    • Ezekiel 9:6 “Slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and women . . . ”
    • Isaiah 13:16 “Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be spoiled, and their wives ravished.”
    • Deuteronomy 13:15 “Thou shalt surely smite the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, destroying it utterly . . . ”
    • Exodus 32:27 “. . . Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Put every man his sword by his side, and go in and out from gate to gate throughout the camp, and slay every man his brother, and every man his companion, and every man his neighbour.”
    • Deut 21:10-12 “When thou goest forth to war against thine enemies, and the LORD thy God hath delivered them into thine hands, and thou hast taken them captive, And seest among the captives a beautiful woman, and hast a desire unto her, that thou wouldest have her to thy wife; Then thou shalt bring her home to thine house, and she shall shave her head, and pare her nails; ”
    • Exodus 12:29-30….. “And it came to pass, that at midnight the LORD smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle. And Pharaoh rose up in the night, he, and all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt; for there was not a house where there was not one dead.”

    Sinners

    • Leviticus 20:9 “For every one that curseth his father or his mother shall be surely put to death . . . ”
    • Exodus 31:15 ” . . . whosoever doeth any work in the sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death.”
    • Deut 21:21 “And all the men of his city shall stone him with stones, that he may die…”

    Murder
    2 Kings 2:23-24:
    • “And he [Elisha] went up from thence unto Bethel: and as he was going up by the way, there came forth little children out of the city, and mocked him, and said unto him, Go up, thou bald head; go up, thou bald head. And he turned back, and looked on them, and cursed them in the name of the LORD. And there came forth two she bears out of the wood, and tare forty and two children of them.”
    Elisha, a Prophet, was ridiculed by some little children who called him a name like “old baldy”. Elisha laid a curse on them in God’s name. God appears to have responded to the curse by sending two bears out of the woods who tare (tore up, killed) 42 of the little children.

    Executing a whole family for the sins of the father:
    Joshua 7:20-25:
    • “…Achan answered Joshua, and said, Indeed I have sinned against the LORD God of Israel… And Joshua, and all Israel with him, took Achan the son of Zerah, and the silver, and the garment, and the wedge of gold, and his sons, and his daughters, and his oxen, and his asses, and his sheep, and his tent, and all that he had: and they brought them unto the valley of Achor. And Joshua said, Why hast thou troubled us? the LORD shall trouble thee this day. And all Israel stoned him with stones, and burned them with fire, after they had stoned them with stones.”
    During the siege of Jericho, God had instructed Joshua to have the army avoid taking any loot from the city. Everything was to be destroyed. Only objects of silver and gold and utensils of bronze and iron were to be taken, and these were to be dedicated to God. Achan had violated these orders. He had taken and hidden a Babylonian robe, and a few thousand’s of dollars worth of silver and gold. Because of Achan’s sin, God allowed the Israelite army to be defeated in a battle for Ai, a small city close to Jericho. Many lives were lost. Achan confessed his sin. His punishment was death by stoning. Afterwards, his body was burned. But in addition to executing Achan, the Israelites stoned and burned his sons, his daughters, his animals and his tent. Apparently, his wife was already dead because she was not mentioned in this passage; otherwise she would have undoubtedly been murdered and burned as well.
    Mass murder of the Midianite children:
    Numbers 31:1-18:
    • “…And they warred against the Midianites, as the Lord commanded Moses, and they slew all the [adult] males. And the children of Israel took all the women of Midian captives, and their little ones…And they brought the captives, and the prey, and the spoil, unto Moses…And Moses was angry with the officers of the host And Moses said unto them, Have ye saved all the women alive? Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Ba’laam, to commit trespass against the Lord in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the Lord. Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the female children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.”
    God’s instructions, Moses sent 12,000 soldiers against the Midianites. The army killed every adult Midianite male. This is in response to some of the Israelite men having had sex with some of the Midianite women. Moses then ordered them to slaughter in cold blood each captive, including all of the boys, saving only female virgins. The latter were apparently to be retained for purposes of rape. The Midianite mothers were thus punished by having to watch their male children murdered in front of them. Then, they were themselves killed. Verse 35 talks about 32,000 virgin captives; this implies that there were probably about 32,000 boys killed.On
    Fortunately, other passages in the Bible imply that the above genocide and mass murder are just a myth. They not actually happen. If it did, then the entire Midian tribe would have been wiped out. All the males and many of the woman had been killed. Any children that the female captives later had would not be regarded as Midianites.

    Mass murder of Babylonian babies:
    • In Psalms 137:8-9, God is asked to bless those who would bash Babylonian babies against stones in an act of mass infanticide.
    So believers in Christ to brand one religion as Violent is to contradict your own when our own Bible has scriptures, verses and quotes filled with death as well.
    On the upside through time we have developed a more heightened sense, that being of a civilised believer in Christ therefore showing a greater value for life more then religion and or according to Gospel. I know that I as a Christian would never bring myself to the limits of murdering Children and babies even if God wanted me too that would be unethical and more importantly uncivilised. However Muslim extremists exist yet in Prehistoric times and continue to Murder and Kill according to their beliefs and for their god.
    For whatever reason, be it so many, I certainly hope America can bring some civility into Iraq and especially into Muslim Mosques during their occupation.

  • john

    islam is a violent religion.its not religion of peace.anyone who leave islam is killed in muslim country.all woman in saudi arabia and afghanistan forced to wear burqa
    and no one does anything for this.everyone is bored of islam.islam sucks.

  • http://media-islam.or.id Agus Nizami

    Who start World War I where 17 million people killed?
    France, Russia, Britain against Germany. Mostly Christians.
    Not Muslim!

    Who Start WW II where 55 million people killed? It’s Christians!
    Read more war such as Crusade War, Iraq and Afghanistan War.

  • Z’d

    I wouldn’t really relate religion to WW I & II in any circumstance here. However it may seem a bit contradictory on my behalf pending my last post, however both world wars were fought between countries, not religions. Adolf Hitler led a campaign against Jews, none can call him a follower in Christ and The Axis including Japan murdered many innocent muslims during their invasion of Asia as well. World War I & II was more or less fought for occupation through aggresion and strenght not to advocate some form of religious crusade.

  • http://media-islam.or.id Agus Nizami

    Just read this.

    From the statistics above, the number 1 killer is the Christians with 177,941,750 victims (World War I kill 17 million people and World War II kill 55 million people. The wars between Germany, British, France, US, etc). It outnumbers the Muslims which only kill 31,943,500 victims.
    Mark Levin in his blog counting the body count between the victims that the Judaeo-Christians kill compared to Muslims:
    In 20th century Judaeo Christians killed 200 million people in Stalin’s era, WW1, WW2, and others while in 1950 population in Northern America and Europe only 720 million. They killed more than 50% of “its own”. While Muslims killed less than 1% of the Judaeo-Christians killing.

  • http://blogcritics.org/writers/dr-dreadful/ Dr Dreadful

    Oh, Muslims only notched up 32 million stiffs. That’s all right, then.

    Any way you serve it, Agus – even if, as you did, one lumps in the body count from non-religious wars and other conflicts – if we have to start counting in the tens and even hundreds of millions, it hardly reflects glowingly on organized religions, does it?

  • itzme

    @Diz why u pick Bin Laden as an example of Islam? Islam is what Muhammad (pbuh) and Quran says, not what some Bin Laden says. So, if u wanna know about Islam.., I guess u just found out where to look.
    p.s. Trust me, U “hate” (dont like, whatever) Bin laden same as “We” muslims do. The difference is u hate him couz he is a terrorist, but we do couz he presents Islam totally wrong, so you think muslims are terrorists couz some Bin Laden “Big Muslim”.
    This thinking as I have also have other 99.9 % of muslims all over the world but strange thing is ull never hear that on TV, isnt it?
    (the other (probably even less) 00.1 % are “Threat to world”. LuL.