“Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake. Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.” — Matthew 5:10-12
Christian Persecution in the Middle East continues to rage on. On March 12th, The Grand Mufti of Saudi Arabia, Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah declared that it is “necessary to destroy all the churches of the region,” Raymond Ibrahim of Jihad Watch reported. The Grand Mufti made the statement in response to questions at a forum regarding Kuwait’s move to ban the building of Christian churches in the country.
“The Sheikh based his proclamation on the famous tradition, or hadith, wherein the prophet of Islam [Muhammed] declared on his deathbed that ‘There are not to be two religions in the [Arabian] Peninsula,’ which has always been interpreted to mean that only Islam can be practiced in the region,” Ibrahim explained. The article goes on to detail the importance of the Saudi Grand Mufti in the Arab Muslim community:
“Sheikh Abdul Aziz bin Abdullah is not just some random Muslim hating on churches. He is the Grand Mufti of the nation that brought Islam to the world. Moreover, he is the President of the Supreme Council of Ulema [Islamic scholars] and Chairman of the Standing Committee for Scientific Research and Issuing of Fatwas. Accordingly, when it comes to what Islam teaches, his words are immensely authoritative.” (source)
Ibrahim also very correctly compared the muted reaction among leaders in America, including President Obama, and contrasted that with the massive media coverage, protests and outrage over Florida Pastor Terry Jones, who planned a “Koran Burning” at his tiny church in Florida last year. President Obama passionately condemned the plans of Terry Jones (an unknown Pastor with no real influence) but has been strangely silent in the face of this proclamation from one of the most influential leaders in the Muslim community who also has the authority to issue Fatwas to the Muslim world. Additionally, in Saudi Arabia, Christianity is banned altogether and there are no churches. In December 2011, 35 Ethiopian Christians were arrested, jailed and eventually deported by Saudi authorities after being caught holding a private prayer session. Yet somehow legislators and leaders seem to leave this country off of the list of those in need of “freedom” and “human rights” when discussing the much-heralded Arab Spring.
Jihad Watch article also raised the point that the Grand Mufti’s declaration was based on the hadith, which is considered part of Islamic jurisprudence, even though it condones and promotes violence against non-Muslims. As we have covered at Beginning and End, persecution of Christians in the majority Muslim nations has been a severe problem for some time. Consider the attacks of the past month:
Iran — authorities have begun sweeping through towns arresting Christians suspected of holding worship meetings in an effort to stamp out the house church movement (source).
Nigeria — Terrorist group Boko Haram claimed responsibility for suicide bombers who set off a car bomb at a church in Jos, Nigeria, killing a church member and a baby (source).
Bible prophecy predicted massive Christian persecution and in many areas that persecution is coming to light. Continue in prayer Christians in Saudi Arabia and other Middle Eastern nations that they will stay strong in the faith despite clear opposition and potentially risking their lives. And pray that the light of the Gospel of Jesus Christ will continue to shine in these nations and touch the hearts of those who seek to destroy Christianity so that they know they too can be forgiven by the Lord through Jesus. As the Bible records in the book of Acts, Christian persecution d only served to make the church stronger. God willing, that will be the case here.
Accept Jesus christ as your lord and saviour. You never know how soon is too late. Trancend the world illusion on enslavement. The world denounces truth. Accepting Jesus will result in something like seeng a new colour. You will see it but will not beable to clealy explain it to anyone else. Its meant to be that way to transend any selfism within you. Currently your constructing your own path that suits your sin lifestyle. Look closely at the economy, Lust , greed , envy, sloth, pride of life, desire for knowledge, desire for power, desire for revencge,gluttony with food . Just think if you can find a truth you can take with you in any of these things. When you die your riches go to someone who will spend away your life. You will be forgotten history will repeat iteslf, the greates minds knowledge fates or is eventually plagerzed, your gooddeeds are forgotten. your teachings are forgotten or mutated, your gold is transfered back to the rullers that rule you through deception. Your grave will grow over . Trancend you ego and free yourself from the dominion of satan. Evidence follows faith. Faith does not follow evidence. Faith above reason in Jesus Christ. Read Ecclesiastes. Read corinthians.You cant trancend your own egoism by adapting a world philosophy to suit your needs. Seek the truth. Sell your cleverness and purchase bewilderment. You don’t get what you want you get what you are in christ. I promise this has been the truth for me. In Jesus christ .
Think of what you really have to lose. …your ego?
Down is up. Break the Matrix of illusion that holds your senses captive.
I came across this site and I’ve been reading different articles for hours, I ran into this post and I wanted to tell you something, as a Muslim, not all muslims agree to this, not all muslims are represented by these “sheiks” infact some of them rebel against these “sheiks”, everyone has the right to practice their religion, non-extremist true muslims know that, they know that according to Quran we have no right to force anyone to do anything or follow a religion or embrace a faith.
you may see a lot of muslims who talk about our prophet Mohammed, most of them deliver a bad image…but I tell you that the Mohammed they speak of is not the prophet that I love, not the prophet that I knew since childhood.
also do not believe all which is said, I live in Kuwait, I personally visited a church here which was constructed a long time ago by an order from the prince who ruled kuwait at the time, we have multiple churches in fact, for different sects of christianity, one of them is only a few minutes away from my house.
Muslims are not all the same, infact the Jihadist may have killed more muslims than christians….just because we did not agree with them or their ways.
Beginning and End says
Thanks for your comments. I was definitely not trying to say all Muslims are like the Saudi Arabian Grand Mufti. So I agree with your point wholeheartedly.
One question I have for you though is – do you think the Koran commands violence? What is your take on those verse people cite that appear to command “forcing” people into the religion?
first of all, I’d like to thank you for your kind reply.
I will try my best to explain my point of view using some examples from the Quran and the life of prophet Mohammad as this topic of discussion is very wide and there are many opinions:
1- the Quran is not specific in most of its commands and teachings: Muslims believe that the teaching of the Quran are “Mujmal” which means general in most cases and that’s why the a lot of the prophet’s Sunna (actions/sayings) where about adding details to the verses of the Quran, for example: in the Quran (Al-Baqara – Verse: 43) the Quran commanded Muslim to pray to God, it did not specify the meaning nor the method of this prayer but the actions of the prophet defined the meaning behind it, the same goes for ablution, it is true that it is explained more that other things in the Quran, people who specialize in studying the Arabic language still have different opinions on the correct order and steps of ablution (mostly trying to prove their sect is correct).
now when the Quran says that we have to go to war or perform acts of violence (usually these verses are associated with Jews/Christians/Non-Believers) these verses are general in their approach but from history and the Sunna of prophet Muhammad we see that these commands where specific to certain groups of people who were actively on the offensive to Muslims.
if you read the the story of the departure of Muslims from Makkah to Al-Madina you will come a cross a tribe of Jews (I’m not sure if they were Arab or were Arabized but they had an Arabic name which is “Banu Quraizah” the sons of Quraizah) who lived there before Islam, that tribe owned a fortress in Al-Madina, upon the arrival of the prophet there he made a contract to set the relationship between the Muslim and non-Muslim communities of Al-Medina, that contract stated that this tribe of Jews are free to stay and had the rights to practice this religion as long as their fortress stood to protect Al-Medina from attackers trying to eliminate Islam.
One day new arrived that the people of Quraish were marching on Al-Medina so, an arrangement was made that the gates of the fortress were to be closed and every outsider should be prevented from entering the city, while Muslim fighters were fortifying the other Muslim fighters where digging a trench around the city, leaving only the entrance covered by the fortress, on the day of the raid Muslims were surprised that in the midst of action the gates were opened and allowed the attacking army to pass. verses of the Quran that were revealed to the prophet mentioning Jihad against Jews during these events were specific to this tribe who did not honor their part of the contract, although it did not specify their name, the Sunna of the prophet clearly shows it as he did not command Muslims to go killing any Jewish person except for fighting this tribe of which many survived but had to leave Al-Madina.
we do believe that the Quran is applicable regardless of time and place, as long as the conditions or waging war are met we are permitted to follow through but it doesn’t mean meaningless/crazy killing of any one and trying to justify it by saying it is the word of God.
2- Islam does not force anyone to embrace it: in the Quran it states that there is no forcing things when it comes to religion, as rights is very distinct from wrong (Al-Baqarah – Verse: 256)
I’ll tell you a story of huge debate, before the migration of the prophet from Makkah to Al-Madina, the numbers of Muslims who were in Makkah was very small, most of them were slaves and poor people so they did not pose as a significant force and where unable to fight back when their lives were endangered. the prophet commanded the Muslims to seek help from the kind of “Al-Habasha” now knows as Ethiopia saying that “it is ruled by a king who’s rule is fair where no one is misjudged” upon arrival of the Muslim Messenger there the King who was christian was handed a letter from the prophet a part of it invited the king and his people to believe in the prophecy of Muhammad and Islam but the prophet ended it by saying “I’ve informed and advised so accept my advice, and may peace be upon those who have followed the guidance”
it is unclear whether or not the king accepted Islam, some say that he did and was kept a secret as his subjects were all Christians, most importantly the King was not threatened or forced in anyway to join Islam, the Muslims at the time were seeking refuge in the king’s kingdom and were too week to actually be a threat to him.
the Quran said that the prophet only had to inform the people of his prophecy and that he was not sent as their keeper (A-shura – Verse 48) .
3- Faith VS Islam, which is more favorable to God?
I am not going to mention the name of my sect as I am not trying to promote anything nor am I trying to say it’s the only correct sect because I believe in the unity of Muslims and the Human Civilization in general. in my sect we believe in the sainthood of the sons and grandsons on the prophet, that they were to be the light that will guide us through this life after his death, we call them “Imams” which literally mean leaders.
we have a saying that is traced to the 9th Imam who said “Allah has favored faith above Islam by one level” in the Quran, the Jewish and Christian people where mentioned as “people of the book” these people of the book are considered faithful people who believe in the same God we believe in, their blood was not to be spilled, their property was not to be taken away, their religion was not to be condemned…we believe that the source of all religions is one, which may extend the meaning of “people of the book” to more that just Jews and Christians but it is very hard to trace the history of the older religions….we believe the only difference between these religions and Islam (and I’m not trying to offend anybody) is that the teaching of these religions and Islam were very close but with time some of it was changed, could be by intent or human error.
I am unsure about this but other sects might not believe in this saying.
a final word: Muslims who practice Islam wrong do not represent Islam but only themselves, Islam is a very beautiful religion and believe me, I for one do not like hurting any living being, Imagine how hard is it for me to believe in Islam if it was such a violence promoting/bloodthirsty religion, the thing is it isn’t, people make it that way to promote their agendas.
if you are wonder why did this happen? in my opinion, after the death of the prophet most Muslims went back to the pre-Islamic days, where the tribe/clan were the most important thing in their lives, every tribe wanted to gain rule and power trying to justify their actions by using and twisting the word of God.
I am sorry for the long post, but as I was typing this a lot of ideas came to my mind and I wanted to cover them all, I’m not sure how good (or bad) is my English but please bare with me.
if you have any more questions I’d be very glad to answer you.
May peace be upon you.
Jero Jones says
Prynhawn da/Good afternoon and Hi
Unfortunately there are lots of clerics in Islam that are giving their religion a bad name, clerics that have strayed from the orthodoxy to embrace fundamentalism and its sick interpretation of Quran. Like the grand Mufti, Sheik Abdul Aziz Bin Abdullah, these fundamentalist Islamic extremist are ignorant of what their prophet prophesied, and worldly matters outside Islam. The world owes a debt to the medieval Islamic pioneers of the sciences, who reintroduced ancient Greek philosophy, mathematics, astronomy, physics, geography, psychology and all the sciences to the west, as well as medicine, surgery and places of learning like universities were all faiths were welcomed. Great scholars such as the polymath, Averroes (1126-98), probably the greatest Islamic scholar of all time, who had a number of learned professions from philosophy, medicine, astronomy, physics, geography, and many more skill that made Córdoba, Al-Andalus (Spain), where he lived a better place for humanity.
Historians the world over will tell you that Islam was the most tolerant of all the Abrahamic religions, who welcomed all faiths and creeds, and it was the like of the Christian expedition wars to the Holy lands that dented Islam’s toleration.
However, every religion such as Christianity have these fundamentalist groups, Islam is no different as we see today as ISIS Jihadist, who call themselves Muslims are seen committing heinous crimes so barbaric in nature that are more suited to the times of the Christian Crusades.
It is sad that humanity is no near being at peace in this day and age, when religion of one sort or another still raises its ugly head to sets man against man. A conflict that has been with man from the beginning of time, when man first sort protection in a superstitious world of mythical unseeing supernatural being that supposedly traversed the heavens, and the dark world of night.
I would like to thank Tatsukage for his comments, that brought a glimmer of hope to an old man’s heart.
May peace be upon you.
Jero Jones, Mab Cymru
It’s my pleasure, I do believe if someone is offended by the existence of another opinion it means that this person is not confident enough in what they believe in.
faith isn’t a matter of debate, it’s what you feel deep inside and it cannot change unless this changes comes from you, so set the differences aside, there is no point in arguing.
Jason Joseph says
The Political violence of the Bible and the Koran is an article written by Bill Warner in the American Thinker. Warner says, “This is not a theological argument, but a political one. This argument is not about what goes on in a house of worship, but what goes on in the marketplace of ideas.
Warner further says “Cain killing Abel or killing a lamb for a meal or an animal sacrifice is not political violence. The political violence of the Koran is called “fighting in Allah’s cause”, a Jihad. Warner tells us “to know Islam, know Mohammed”. Mohammed averaged an event of violence every six weeks for the last 9 years of his life.
When Mohammed was a preacher of religion, Islam grew at the rate of 10 new Muslims per year. When he turned to Jihad, Islam grew at an average rate of 10,000 per year. A world conquest by the political process.
richard tetteh says
Pray for Christians all over the world