Below is the most recent opinion piece by the Austrian writer Andreas Unterberger, as published last Friday at the author’s website. Many thanks to JLH for the translation:
Islam: The Good News and the Bad News for Europe
by Andreas Unterberger
January 9, 2015
The new book by the bestselling French author Michel Houellebecq is on everyone’s mind, because of the Paris attacks. It envisions a Muslim president of France in eight years, and the elimination of all “infidels” from the “Islamic University of the Sorbonne.” Actually, the demographic development makes that most likely a few years later. But, in fact, the triumph of Islam over what was once the West could take place in eight years. Indeed, the tendency of most leftist parties is to prefer voting for Muslim candidates than for those from anti-Islamic parties.
That is the logical result of their intensive efforts in recent years to label all Islam critics as neo-Nazis. It was ostensibly a strategy to retain power, but with no factual basis. This characterization has become an unquestioned axiom and, therefore, a self-made trap.
Something similar is happening in Germany, where there has been increasing support for Islam-critical demonstrations. Where, however, all the Bundestag parties (excepting only the CSU*) have made the mistake of denouncing as rightist-radical the rapidly growing concerns of that portion of the population that is still in the majority. Even as partisan tactics, that is stupid. It is to be expected that Muslim-qua-Muslim parties will be forming everywhere in Europe in coming years. And as that happens, the present membership of Muslims in red and green parties will be a thing of the past.
The SPD parliamentary leader Opperman had a particularly dramatic reaction after the Paris attacks. “These are killers, not Muslims,” he decreed, without explaining why these two terms should be mutually exclusive, And, as a reaction to this attack on freedom of expression, he actually demanded that PEGIDA stop its demonstrations. With no understanding of the fact that this is what the Islamists want — for any further peaceful exercise of freedom of expression to be made impossible. Some Europeans believe that prognoses about an Islamic majority are like predictions of economic cycles — just reading tea leaves. But that is wrong, because demography — even in reference to the future — is based on hard facts. The mothers of the next generations are already born. Or not born. And the tendency to be prolific is an amazingly firm constant. The more educated, the more cosmopolitan, the more non-Muslim women are, the fewer children they have. That has been true for decades now. And in every country in Europe. It is therefore almost inevitable that several European countries will have Muslim majorities sometime in this century.
A Religion Like Any Other?
Now this does not mean that we can just await Europe’s future with resignation. There are a number of factors that can still be influenced (by, for instance: emphatically liberal-democratic education, stopping any further immigration, firm action against preachers hostile to women and the constitution, etc.). Of course, that will only happen if Europe’s governments, the EU and the media finally recognize the ominous developments. If they do not continue across-the-board to prefer repression and concentration on the teeny-tiny pseudo-problems of the real world.
Others are soothing, saying: Islam is a religion like many others. That’s not bothering anybody. It doesn’t matter, in present-day Europe, whether you live in a country with a Catholic or an Anglican or a lay majority, or a Nordic national church. Buddhist, Islamic, Hindu — it’s all the same.
Some conservative Christians even find the rapid growth of Islam in Europe a good thing. In Islam, people do at least believe in a God. Abortions, homosexuality, drugs and alcohol are banned. Full concealment for women is seen as a necessary counterweight to extreme exhibitionism. And no more pork? Well that’s sad, but bearable. Their analysis of Islam probes no deeper.
Militant atheists, on the other hand, are so engrossed with their struggle against the hegemony of the Catholic Church, that they fail to notice they are fighting against something that no longer exists (or is expressed scarcely anywhere except in crosses on mountaintops.). They certainly do not notice that they are opening the door to a far greater threat. To say nothing of the (actual) neo-Nazis — they are for Islam solely because it is anti-Semitic. And neo-Nazis have no time for Christianity and liberalism.
The History of Islam
Historically, Islam has been the great threat to the Christian West for far more than a millennium.
- It killed, forcibly converted or enslaved millions of Christians (=Europeans).
- It conquered and Islamized the entire Byzantine Empire (to be sure with Catholic rulers from Venice to France as accomplices).
- It brought science and research to an almost total standstill in its countries. Even the erstwhile medical and cultural achievements of the Arab world stemmed almost completely from Christian or Jewish roots (despite contemporary propaganda films to the contrary).
- It first Islamized Christian Palestine and then undertook countless wars against the Christian countries of Europe (compared to which the Crusades seem downright petty).
- Even where it is portrayed as tolerant by some tunnel-vision historians, it treated Christians and Jews as second-class citizens who had to pay a head tax.
- And in recent months, those bloodthirsty monsters Al Qaeda and the Islamic State have revealed with great clarity what so many Muslims living in Europe as well as elsewhere regard as the true content of their religion. They can base their opinion on seventeen calls for murder in the Koran.
And yet, it is not simply Christianity and Judaism that are most at risk from Islam today. It is all of Western civilization, humanity’s progress — what the Enlightenment made possible.
The most significant element of which is the separation of religion and state. To be sure, this separation can be found in the New Testament (“Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s”). It was brought to an end by Constantine, and during the Enlightenment caused problems for many Christians. Yet it has now been a matter of course for generations almost all over the world.
Except in the Islamic world. From Nigeria’s northern provinces to Malaysia, states are at least in part instruments of power for religion. There are far too many statements by Islamic exponents to the effect that they will only accept the church-state separation so long as Islam is in the minority.
This perspective is all the more depressing, considering that for many Muslims Islam is a religion based exclusively on the text of the Koran. And this text, 1,400 years later, is to be taken literally. Any interpretation, any doctrine, any theological progression, any attention to knowledge of the natural sciences, any pluralism, is forbidden. Since there is no single authoritative figure in Islam, even the most uneducated preachers have an equal right to function as imams. Each one can look for and use whatever in the Koran suits his muddled thinking.
What May Be Reason to Hope
Will the European political system face up to this challenge? Will it at least recognize it? The almost greater hope that it will not turn out so bad is more likely to occur among the Muslims themselves.
For they are at seriously at odds with one another. This is evident not only from the many wars between them in Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan and Libya. Not only from the great differences between the medieval Wahhabi Saudi Arabians and the apparently quite tolerant Kurdish Muslims. This is evident above all in the fact that, of all the Muslims living in Europe, only about half of them are Muslim, strictly speaking. That can be seen in the attendance at Islamic religious instruction. Or in opinion polls where only about half of Muslims place sharia before the laws of the state. This also shows in the welcome — if small — initiatives to develop a liberal, European, enlightened, intellectual Islam. On the other hand, the fact that circa one half of the Muslims living in Europe are thoroughly fundamentalist is cause for real anxiety.
This anxiety is not alleviated by the fact that, for many Turkish, Chechen and Arabic immigrants, Islam means an emotional tie to their old homeland. One which they have revived for that very reason.
|*||The (essentially Bavarian) component of Merkel’s CDU-CSU “conservative” party.
The fundamental question is this: can a society which has few children and doesn’t teach them to respect its core values prevail (or even survive) in the long run — whatever its initial military or economic advantages — against one that has lots of kids and does?
Yes, but only if that failing to uphold what is good about Western civilization can be reversed.
Exactly my thoughts, Nemesis. What an enormous “if”….
My apologies for the late reply. You had me thinking with that big ‘if’.
It can be done, but if it is not able to be done politically, then it must be done rapidly when we defeat the forces of darkness ( I call them that, not from a religious belief, but from what their true calling card is) so as to keep them on their back feet as we will never be totally rid of them.
The answer is clearly no.
Not only are Muslims having children, but we in the “liberal” West are aborting our next generation apace.
Furthermore, the very idea of Western Exceptionalism (i.e. ‘What The West Has Built Is Better’) is now considered heresy in every Western country…the US included. This is nothing more or less than cultural nihilism. Who needs The Jihad when we have professors who are doing a fine job of destroying Western Civilization all by themselves? The average muddle headed 20 something college graduate (who somehow managed to make it through the abortion minefield) is a mute testimony to their success in that regard. They are far more concerned about global warming than about the Islamization of Europe.
And finally, if the intelligence chatter of the last year or so is any indication, we may get a little push along the road to cultural annihilation. It seems the jihadi shock troops are actively trolling the black markets for…wait for it…bio weapons. If this is true, then all bets are off. No need for a high tech missile delivery system there. Just find a few dedicated foot soldiers who are willing to die for their cause. Any of those in Islam? Then have a couple hundred of them infect themselves with a deadly germ warfare agent and board planes bound for various airports in The West. I needn’t tell you what the end result would be.
Read “I am Pilgrim”
Abortion, whether you approve or not, is a substitute for poor or non-existent contraception. Banning the former will make people more careful where possible, or encourage illegal abortion and increase adult fatalities.
Mark, that is a tired old excuse for the murdering of the innocent. Whatever happened to the women in the relationship just saying no to recreational sex?
Absolutely! Such a ridiculous rationalization.
I loved “I am Pilgrim.”
Whatever one’s personal views on the morality of abortion are, one thing is certain: abortions will take place. The only issue is whether they will take place legally or illegally. In the era of a illegal abortions, the women who could afford to do so paid doctors extortionate sums to carry out illegal abortions. Two of my relatives basically made fortunes doing this; charging four times an average weekly salary for the procedure. One woman I knew, an upper middle-class university student at the time, became a stripper to fund her doctor-carried out abortion. Then in that milieux became a heroin addict.
The women who couldn’t afford an illegal doctor-abortion used “backyard abortionists” who used metal coat-hangers as medical implements. Infections and deaths often resulted.
I have witnessed the lives of female friends blighted by having had legal abortions: unable to have children because they had too many abortions; psychologically damaged by the torment that they killed their unborn child, etc.
Also I’ve never met a woman who regretted having a child. In the 1980’s I was in a study group: myself and seven women. One was near 50, she had a son (to a husband she left before the son was born) who we all met. She told the other six much younger women: “If you ever get pregnant – have the baby, you’ll never regret it.” The other six looked at her as if she were from Mars! In a secular feministic society they’d never heard such an urging on that basis before.
I don’t personally approve of abortion for those reasons. There should be education programs aimed at discouraging abortion. My personal disapproval, however, shouldn’t determine the issue of its legality or otherwise because there will always be abortions.
I respect the views of people who oppose abortion for religious reasons – it certainly shouldn’t be taxpayer funded – but do they respect the reality that women will jeopardize their lives if abortion is or becomes illegal? Is the woman’s life worth less than that of her unborn child?
Julius that is a very persuasive comment that leaves me with the impression that it will always be the woman’s prerogative to obtain an abortion when the growing of a child would be too inconvenient to her lifestyle.
I cannot agree with that when the same woman had the opportunity to refuse coitus at some time in her relationship with her male partner whose own reluctance to think about his own accountability while taking part into the ‘bargain’ of recreational sexual intercourse just to get his ‘rocks off’ allows him to walk away without any culpability simply because the woman will decide to terminate the unwanted pregnancy.
Without his input there would have been no pregnancy.
How inconvenient it must be for the woman to grow another human who wishes to be doing otherwise, but how sad and just plain wrong it is for the terminated child who does not get a say in it.
And all because she failed to say No! And whether one is religious or not, the termination of what could be another human life cheapens us all as a species.
The 1960s will be looked back on as the time that put the West on the downhill path to whatever awaits us all in the not too distant future.
It has been calculated that in Shakespeare’s day, when this was a more “Christian” country than now, up to 40% of women were pregnant on their wedding day, contraception being rare. How many would have married the father otherwise? Tout ca change…
Oh Nemesis, if only everyone could be as free of human weaknesses as you.
Mark, what has the middle ages got to do with the mass genocide that we are witness to in the 21st Century? I am surprised that you call the safeguarding of unwanted pregnancies a ‘human weakness’? I thought your friends held you up as a moral person? Maybe you have forgotten that in days past, at least up until the 1980s, orphanages were kept in place for those women who found it impossible to say NO? I accept that some will never find the grit to say no. That is indeed a human frailty. But it is a human frailty that has in Christendom at least been catered for until recently when the state made it impossible to continue.
The state and Churches took in those babies not wanted by their mothers, and there were many of them, and regardless of what many have now been ‘conditioned’ to think of those institutions, at least those babies had a chance in life.
Isn’t just one human life worth striving for?
You seem to give human life an aspect not far above that of the animal. Please correct me if I am wrong.
And you call the action to protect the vulnerable a human weakness? So please tell me then what kind of human are you Mark?
The Muslim makes a very sick joke out of any arguments for lives or whatever ever being a benefit of abortion. I imagine that the next generstion will accidently stumble onto the brilliant idea that if they produce as many babies as possible they will stand a chance of one day having the numbers to have a go at ending new Muslim order. Just like with Espana that may take a long long long bloody time. Meantime abortion plays nicely into the death cults plans for the invasion, rape and impregnation of Euro Left Land. What may be coming down the line will be a catalyst for more survival oriented action.
“The state and Churches took in those babies not wanted by their mothers, and there were many of them, and regardless of what many have now been ‘conditioned’ to think of those institutions, at least those babies had a chance in life.”
Actually unwanted babies (in Australia at least, by the mid C20th) were only very briefly institutionalized, if at all, as they were adopted out to infertile couples*. There was a Catholic Adoption Agency that used to line up Catholic couples with their prospective baby and the baby would go straight from the maternity ward to them. I was never in a class (in both Catholic and State schools) where there wasn’t at least one adopted kid. Infertile couples since the 80’s have had to source their kids from overseas and from 3rd world countries.
* In two instances I know of from that era, couples with two sons, rather than roll the dice again, just went out and adopted the daughter they wanted!
What led to this European tragedy?
Documentary explains it all, the ultimate goal, the preparations, the Methods, the weakness of democrazy
Great video. Thanks.
The vulnerability of Democracy
The documentary explains it all, the ultimate goal, the preparations, the methods, the weakness of democracy
Some good points made. Although this I take issue with:
“only about half of them are Muslim, strictly speaking. That can be seen in the attendance at Islamic religious instruction. Or in opinion polls where only about half of Muslims place sharia before the laws of the state.”
From what’s known about the profiles of the Charlie Hebdo killers, they didn’t use to be that religious. Nor did Anjem Choudhury, nor many other Islamists now obsessed with defeating the infidels. As for the second point, “only about half” is a proportion good enough to win elections, in most countries. All it takes is for the other half to have no strong opinion on Sharia… Besides, has the author never heard of Taqiyya? It can surely be applied to opinion polls, as much as to anything else.
Hence my reasoning, that any Muslim, particularly the self-identifying kind, should never be trusted by anyone who values their own culture.
Disagree as well about Islamic parties replacing leftist ones… as long as leftist parties serve their interests and accept all their demands, why would they? An Islamic party would likely wake up a few more infidels. Somehow I can’t imagine the likes of Cem Ozdemir, or other smooth-talking “moderates”, accepting that.
Belgium has a Muslim Party.
When I landed through life’s circumstances in a “culturally enriched” neighborhood in 1997, it didn’t take long for me to understand that a tumor was forming and metastasizing. I knew then that the only hope for the west was to put a break on immigration from third/fourth world countries. Alas, we are now 20 years on, and, if anything, immigration has accelerated and intensified. A society in which a certain segment continuously has to pay up for the upkeep of another one, which, on top of being parasitic, is hostile to the host, criminal, violent, and seditious, can and never will be healthy.
A week is a long time in politics… The opposition is growing and is well past being nipped in the bud. It will snowball.
Snowballs are banned by the imams. Too much fun and pleasure. An exploding snowball however…
Yet another aspect to the troubles that bother us all in the West, and to others around the planet if the West is ever subjugated. A well thought out and reasoned essay that I have no doubt would put even the most ardent defender of the Collective on the back foot in trying to respond to it. Well done to the author!
Yes. But only if it firmly as resolutely rejects “love” as a core ethical principle and embraces its group survival above all else. Like the ancients of Europe once did. Back then 300 could hold off a horde. Today, we have embraced the ethics of love as a suicide cult. And most of us can’t bear to quit drinking the kool-aid.
Again — the female franchise; also, the liberal notion of equality — a battering ram against exceptionalism, both microcosmically and macrocosmically: of the individual and of the state, and of cultures, too.
Take no offense, but what you ask is not a fundamental question , it’s a given. A deracinated Merkelized Europe will not prevail. Only one question is fundamental- what is to be done?
Until “the people” are educated as to the reality of Muslim faith and beliefs — and I mean all of those beliefs — there is no hope. The MSM is studiously avoiding this obligation it would seem. Pork — ha. That’s not the point. Jews don’t eat pork, either — but they don’t kill others of different faiths who do. The point is, as the author notes, the many reasons why Muslims should kill “the infidel” and that is the problem. I think.
I wish I knew more, but I do know that if Europe does not wake up, if America does not wake up, this will turn out badly. Paris should have awakened a lot more people, but it’s news and it’s on its way to the back pages and then will be forgotten. And there has already been the spin that they shouldn’t have “offended” Muslims in the first place.
Live and let live is not an option anymore.
Well, that’s the problem, isn’t it. Not only is live and let live no longer an option, it’s not universally agreed to, is it?
It is not true that mainstream Islamic thought holds that Islam is based exclusively on the Koran. Instead, there are also contemporary writings describing the life of Muhammad and there are contemporary exegeses. Hadith and Sunnah.
The Koran is a relatively short text, and because language drifts over time, the Arabic written there can be difficult for modern Arabic speakers. Also, allusions and metaphors can become obscure over time. For this and other reasons, it is common practice to refer to these other writings when there are difficulties of interpretation. True, the final authority rests with the Koran, but when even the most careful reading cannot resolve what exactly is intended by a passage, jurists look to related source material. Just as in other legal traditions.
The latter parts supersede the earlier parts. Dr. Bill Warner sets the Westerner straight on what is authoritative, as does Stephen Coughlin, to name two.
The writings describing the life of Mohammed most certainly are not contemporary, but more than a hundred years after his alleged time. They do not survive, but are cited in the work by Ibn Hisham who died in 833, two hundred years after Mohammed.
“The prophet is all Islam has.”
No crowds witnessing healings. No followers witnessing a transfiguration. No accounts written by those who knew him.
The Bible is a library, with books from many distinguished contributors over a very long period. The Koran, in compete contrast, was brought to the Arabs hundreds of years later by one man only, an illiterate desert tribesman camel dealer. He is the ONLY PERSON to vouch for it. There is no corroborative material. It was not, at first, written, but passed on by oral transmission.
The Hadiths, the traditions, concern this one man, and are not first- or second-hand, but many “hands” later, passed on by oral tradition. Many are considered “weak”.
The Sira, the biography of the one man, was put together nearly two hundred years after his alleged lifetime.
Islam has no other sources.
There is an enormous corpus of later writings concerning Mohammed and his life. It ALL depends on the one man. It is an inverted pyramid. Everything in Islam depends on one man’s word. However, the traditions record that Islam’s one man instructed his followers they could use deception in the cause of Islam.
There it is. EVERYTHING in Islam depends on a man who said it was permissible to lie.
For a helpful though long video: Jay Smith:
An Historical Critique of Islam’s Beginnings
Good. I suppose we can keep fighting Islam forever as our core values, as you put it, may emerge and crystallize as we are put under existential stress. I hope.
But our minds should be focused now on the horror. This is Pakistan. We know ISIS et al are going to try to take over Pakistan because they would be stupid not to. People who are so disturbed that they will go through a school and kill all the kids are going to use atomic weapons. Forget deterrence. We may go through a Blade Runner era for awhile if this happens.
It is critical at this juncture to have the proper leaders. We actually could lose these wars without them.
Constantine did not end the separation of church and state. He simply made Christianity the religion of the empire. There were still very clear demarcations between the civic and religious world.
Why are secularists so [not so bright and unaware] despite claiming to be so smart and knowledgeable?
Imperial Rome did not separate church and state. One of the most important cults was that of the Divine Augustus. One of the reasons Christians were persecuted was their opposition to divine honors being paid to the emperor, which reluctance was seen as treasonous. The Council of Elvira, held in Spain in 306, dealt with the difficulty Christian citizens who accepted governmental positions had with the obligatory pagan observances such positions entailed. Government and religion were closely entwined in pagan Rome.
Constantine’s Edict of Toleration did not make Christianity the official Roman religion, but halted the persecution of Christians, restored confiscated property, and gave Christian bishops privileges similar to those accorded pagan priests. Constantine did feel entitled to sit in on the Council of Nicea, of course.
Pagan bloody animal sacrifice was not outlawed until the reign of Theodosius the better part of a century later.
“Government and religion were closely entwined in pagan Rome” — but the Roman authorities did permit a variety of other cults as long as the imperial cult was honored alongside them. Otherwise, Christianity could not have gained a foothold.
Also, Christian theologians (notably Augustine) wrote that secular powers had a legitimate, God-given function even if the rulers were not themselves Christian. That’s partly because of the Jewish history of living under non-Jewish powers for centuries, partly because of Jesus’ “my kingdom is not of this world” teaching, and partly because of the necessity of accepting a powerful non-Christian authority in the early centuries — an authority that (grudgingly and inconsistently) regarded their creed as one among many that were permitted, as Judaism had been permitted.
Too many Westerners take their point of reference only from the era when secular powers did, in one degree or another, enforce a Christian dominance, and then they say, “Look, Christianity reformed and became less oppressive, so Islam can too; it’s just a little behind, but of course it got a later start.” They either don’t understand that Islam is different in its fundamental view of political authority in relation to religion. Even when Muslims insist that Islam is “a total way of life,” definitely including government, too many Westerners don’t think it really means “total”; or they assume that it will naturally evolve over time.
Many Western leaders seem to believe that Islam as practiced within Europe will result in a cultural dynamic quite unlike what emerges in majority-Muslim countries. This might be a product of arrogance — the belief that the good aspects of Western culture (particularly, tolerance) are so obviously superior that they will inevitably be adopted by Muslims. Thus, any pattern to the contrary must be ascribed to the failure of the native population to be nice enough.
The complacent cultural arrogance is oddly joined to cultural self-contempt — the belief that Western culture is so unsatisfactory and impoverished that importing Islam and bending to Islamic ways can only be an improvement.
How those attitudes can be held simultaneously in the same head is a mystery, but apparently they are.
La Marseillaise and
La Marseillaise was sung spontaneously in the French Parliament on Tuesday. A most remarkable event. On this same day, the socialist Prime Minister Manuel Valls gave a very strong speech, which might remind you much about national identity.
All of a sudden, the socialists seem to find the importance of a nation’s, a people’s identity – something that they would under no circumstance hear of, during Nicolas Sarkozy’s Presidency, as much as he tried to make it a substantial question to be debated at the time.
I would suggest that what you heard was lip service only. The current crop of French ‘leaders’ do not have the intestinal fortitude to take the fight to the enemy.
The Euroweenie Union
The Euroweenie Onion
One dissenting point; Jesus may have said that his kingdom was not of this world, but the Catholic Church (and others, to a lesser extent, though the Russian Orthodox are catching up) still try to dictate the secular law; Google “concordats” if you’re sceptical).
My point was about the founding principles and original character of Christianity vs. Islam. Christians can look back to the origins of their religion and see a spiritual figure whose disciples converted people one by one, and centuries of development without the aim of seizing worldly power. Muslims look back to a warlord who forcibly made himself a political leader as well a “prophet” and moral exemplar, and who began a pattern of conquest that quickly subjugated a large part of the known world. That’s one reason why it’s overly optimistic to assume that the Islamic world will evolve and “reform” in the direction of secular governance and religious pluralism in the same way that the Western world has done.
Even when the church has tried to dictate secular law, even when the church was at its greatest influence in Europe, it still had to compete with a separate power — and vice versa. The fact that a structure of ecclesiastical authority grew up separate from secular authority was immensely consequential in the formation of Western civilization. It’s true that they sometimes acted in concert. (I don’t need to consult Google to know about concordats — which, of course, involve agreements between two distinct powers that have some different principles and motives but agree to reconcile some differences and cooperate for a common purpose.) But each power could also act as a check on the other, and secular authority is not always benign, nor is it necessarily more tolerant and less oppressive than religious powers. If you’re skeptical, Google “Soviet Union.”
>initiatives to develop a liberal, European, enlightened, intellectual Islam
Unfortunately, anyone who has read the Koran will understand it is impossible to do this without cutting out a third of the book and destroying a large amount of “strong’ hadithes.
I think encouraging Muslims to leave Islam is the only way forward. Here is an excellent piece on this from Quadrant:
A sticking point often overlooked when dealing with Islam as a ‘religion’ seems to be the too ready acceptance by many that Islam is truly a religion in every sense of the word that automatically fulfils the Western understanding of what a true religion is.
By our own understanding of religion Islam cannot be a religion because it goes against everything that Western religion, and generally other non-Christian religions uphold, such as the expectation that other ‘religions’ be respected and human life considered sacred.
Islam is an ideology that controls its believers 24/7 and in everything they do, say or think. No other belief system has this totalitarian aspect to it that even includes the right to kill those who wish to leave it. Islam is a totalitarian cult, not a religion and as such, has to be eliminated from this planet because it can never be reformed.
“Some conservative Christians even find the rapid growth of Islam in Europe a good thing. In Islam, people do at least believe in a God. Abortions, homosexuality, drugs and alcohol are banned. Full concealment for women is seen as a necessary counterweight to extreme exhibitionism. And no more pork? Well that’s sad, but bearable. Their analysis of Islam probes no deeper.”
I will call you out on this one. The “conservative Christians” who welcome the rapid growth of Islam seem to fall into one of two camps: Post-Vatican II Roman Catholics and ex-Evangelical Protestants desperate for some secular “respectability”.
Those of us who remain unabashedly Evangelical do not welcome Islam at all, even if we can have sympathy for individual Muslims (rest assured, the Paris murderers and Joker Tsarnaev are not among them). “I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge” (Rom. 10:2) fits Muslims.
What do we see in Islam? Sure, we agree that abortion and homosexuality are sins. But we note as well that in heterosexual relations, Islamic polygamy and the example of “the perfect man” bless the worst impulses and lusts of dominant males, and stray from God’s pattern of life-long monogamous heterosexual marriage or the single life that Christ Himself endorsed (Mt. 19:4). if you raise the examples of the patrairch’s, David’s and Solomon’s polygamy, I will tell you to look at Genesis, Samuel, and Kings and tell me if these relationships are presented as ideal. I think not.
Worst of all, Islam, thinking it honors Jesus Christ, declares that he was not truly crucified. But this contradicts the testimony of the New Testament, the Talmud, and Pagan Roman writers alike. Jesus’ sacrifice for us on the cross was the just for the unjust, and atonement to bring us sinners to God (I Peter 3:18). If Christ is now body and soul in glory, it is because this humiliation and suffering prior to his resurrection and exaltation was necessary for our salvation. Since we confess as well that Jesus is the Word of God become flesh (John 1:1-18) as well, how can we welcome some supposed creed which makes a garble out of any Scriptural material it touches, and then offers us the self-proclaimed visions and a mere code of conduct promulgated by a bandit warlord?
For us, we humbly rejoice at the goodness of God, which has re-planted indigenous Christian congregations and witness in places like Kabylia and southeastern Anatolia where there has been none. We have frankly been caught flat-footed by an unexpected openness to the Gospel of Christ on the part of our Muslim neighbors that has hardly ever been seen before and welcome them into our churches (as enquirers and fellow redeemed people–NOT to proclaim Muhammad and the Qur’an, as was foolishly done at Washington Cathedral). Hence, when we are seeing unforeseen fruit in missions, we do not wish to spoil it by calling for intercivilizational war (OURS is the religion that calls on us to pursue peace with all men, as much as it is up to us, Rom. 14.19). But this does not mean that we have any positive feelings for Islam as a religion.
Jesus Christ is risen from the dead, and reigns from Heaven, from whence he will come to judge the quick and the dead. Muhammad rests in the dust of Medina, from whence he will one day be called to be judged–just like the rest of us.
Nemesis (15th at 5.31 pm)- I didn’t mean that not taking precautions was a human weakness, rather that having sex outside marriage is, and always has been, whatever the prevailing morality. Even where contraception is available it’s not always reliable, and sometimes people just get carried away. If you’ve had the strength not to, good for you.
Abortion is something I’ve thought about a lot. I don’t know for sure whether, and at what stage, a foetus is a human, and I’m certainly not happy with terminations being used casually as an alternative form of contraception, as used to be common in the old communist bloc.
If one is approaching the subject from a religious, particularly Christian, point of view, I’ve seen justifications for regarding it as a sin, but on the other hand the Old Testament (sorry, I forget where) has a recipe for procuring an abortion if a woman is believed to have been unfaithful to her husband. Either way, believers – of any faith- have no right to impose their view on others; isn’t that much of what this blog is concerned with?
We may disagree, but I hope you will now accept that I do try to be a moral person, even if our conclusions differ.