In an effort to distinguish between the God of the Bible and the god of Islam, one topic has been conspicuously absent from this site until now: that of violence in the Bible. I know that the Bible, especially the Old Testament, has violence in it, often at the command of God (of the Bible). I hear many reports that begin with “Well the God of the Bible endorses violence just like the god of Islam”, etc. What the ones uttering such nonsense fail to understand is the reason for such violence, so I thought it time to work on exposing the differences. One must understand the god he has chosen to serve otherwise there is no purpose is service (and trust me, even if you consider yourself an atheist you will serve a god, hopefully the Right One – you just haven’t found your need yet).
So let’s get started with some examples of violence across the board and compare them to see motives and gain a better understanding.
The media, especially Western media, is guilty of painting Islam and Islamists as peaceful patrons who have and want nothing to do with violence. When people try to take a stand against the violence in Islam, we hear objections to Islamic violence such as “Every religion is compatible with the best and the worst of humankind. Through its long history, Christianity has supported inquisitions and anti-Semitism, but also human rights and social welfare.” In other words, when you try to defend Christianity, folks will reply with “Yeah, but Christianity is no different from (fill in the blank).” I’m not about to say that everyone ever killed in a war in the name of “Christianity” has been killed for noble reasons, nor will I suggest that I agree with all of the killings and violence. To be honest, I wasn’t alive during the more violent times of our history and so I don’t know the exact reasons and thoughts behind such violence.
But that is not the point! I’m not writing this to defend history, the Crusades, or anything else that MAN has done. I’m here to distinguish between what the God of the Bible has written in His Word about violence and what the false god of Islam has written in his book about violence. So make your own distinction between the two and let’s see what is written and directed by each of them.
So how are Christians supposed to respond to counter-charges about Biblical support of violence? Is the Bible really such that it should create Christians that are no different than Muslim terrorists and others who use violence in the name of God to destroy their enemies? When you are questioned about violence in the Bible, what can you say?
As Christians we MUST be the first to admit that Christians have (and even continue today) to act despicably in the Name of Jesus (of the Bible), but the fact is that those so-called Christians who would do so have no justification for their actions from Jesus Christ, his life and teachings as found in the New Testament. Christians are told to imitate Jesus (of the Bible):
“Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.”
1st Corinthians 11:1 (KJV)
“And you should imitate me, just as I imitate Christ.”
1st Corinthians 11:1 (NLT)
“I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you. For though ye have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel. Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me.”
1st Corinthians 4:14-16
So we can see that Paul, one of the most influential writers of the New Testament, practically begged us to “imitate him” as he “imitated Jesus (of the Bible)”. That means that he was asking us to act like Jesus (of the Bible). In other words, we are to use WHAT JESUS DID as an example for our life!
Let’s change the popular phrase
“WWJD” (what would Jesus do?)
“WDJD” (what DID Jesus do?)
Now when I survey the world scene in the 21st century, I have to admit that I don’t see nearly the amount of violence purported by Christians as I do for Muslims. So talking about history is one thing but we must also remember that while it is not something with which we agree anyway, it is also something that none of us can correct. We weren’t alive hundreds or thousands of years ago. So let’s focus on today. Do we see worldwide violence occurring at the hands of Muslims today? Of course! And what’s worse, the Muslims doing the violence are usually aiming it towards people who oppose Islam. And they use their book (the unholy Quran), their prophet (the lying, murdering, pedophile Muhammad), and their false god of Islam as examples! Each of these provide ample justification for the actions of today’s Muslims in their “jihad”. Throughout the life of Muhammad, he encouraged the intimidation and slaughter of his enemies, not just in self defense as it is commonly reported by Muslims, but in the promotion of the cause of his false god and the spread of Islam.
The point is that yes, Christians have done heinous deeds in the name of Christianity and Jesus (of the Bible), but they had no Biblical support nor did they have the example of Jesus Christ Himself for their deeds. They were wrong. On the other hand, Muslims have and they use their sources to justify their actions. When Muslims commit such acts, they can in fact claim that they are following the example of their prophet and thus fulfilling the will of their false moon god and that they are promoting Islam. There is no similarity between the God of the Bible and the god of Islam.
“But,” you say, “there are times in the Old Testament when God ordered the killing of people in His Name.” You would be correct about that and we must examine the difference between such orders and our world today. It’s all about context and if we leave out the context, anything goes! We can’t have that!!
You can find the order of the destruction of Canaan in the Book of Joshua. God clearly ordered the destruction of all of the Canaanites living in the land! And this story is used by those outside of Christianity to prove that God (of the Bible) condones violence and therefore is no different than the god of Islam. What they fail to recognize, however, is that God (of the Bible) gave orders to kill all of the Canaanites because of His Holiness! Let me explain. The nation of Israel was chosen to be a witness to the world of the True and Living God (of the Bible). The Israelites were to live in the Promised Land surrounded by the heathen nations, yet they were not to be influenced by the other nations’ religions. God (of the Bible) instructed His people that they were not to take to themselves any of the elements of the false pagan religions, and that they certainly weren’t to do any of those kinds of worship and apply it to Him! He had instructed the nation about this earlier – see the following passage from Deuteronomy (it’s long but necessary to prove the point):
“These are the statutes and judgments, which ye shall observe to do in the land, which the LORD God of thy fathers giveth thee to possess it, all the days that ye live upon the earth. Ye shall utterly destroy all the places, wherein the nations which ye shall possess served their gods, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every green tree: And ye shall overthrow their altars, and break their pillars, and burn their groves with fire; and ye shall hew down the graven images of their gods, and destroy the names of them out of that place. Ye shall not do so unto the LORD your God. But unto the place which the LORD your God shall choose out of all your tribes to put his name there, even unto his habitation shall ye seek, and thither thou shalt come: And thither ye shall bring your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, and your tithes, and heave offerings of your hand, and your vows, and your freewill offerings, and the firstlings of your herds and of your flocks: And there ye shall eat before the LORD your God, and ye shall rejoice in all that ye put your hand unto, ye and your households, wherein the LORD thy God hath blessed thee. Ye shall not do after all the things that we do here this day, every man whatsoever is right in his own eyes. For ye are not as yet come to the rest and to the inheritance, which the LORD your God giveth you. But when ye go over Jordan, and dwell in the land which the LORD your God giveth you to inherit, and when he giveth you rest from all your enemies round about, so that ye dwell in safety; Then there shall be a place which the LORD your God shall choose to cause his name to dwell there; thither shall ye bring all that I command you; your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, your tithes, and the heave offering of your hand, and all your choice vows which ye vow unto the LORD: And ye shall rejoice before the LORD your God, ye, and your sons, and your daughters, and your menservants, and your maidservants, and the Levite that is within your gates; forasmuch as he hath no part nor inheritance with you. Take heed to thyself that thou offer not thy burnt offerings in every place that thou seest: But in the place which the LORD shall choose in one of thy tribes, there thou shalt offer thy burnt offerings, and there thou shalt do all that I command thee.”
So we see that God (of the Bible) ordered destruction but for reasons of keeping worship pure. He didn’t want exactly what would later happen around the world as pagan influences found their way into True worship (the Christmas tree, the celebration of Easter with an “Easter Bunny” (even the name Easter comes from another god), etc. In the case of the story in Joshua, the Promised Land in which the Israelites were to settle was populated by the Canaanites who had corrupted and perverted the Truth of God (of the Bible). These people were so corrupt that were beyond saving, and only God (of the Bible) can make such a determination. What is certain is that had any been permitted to live, they would have influenced Israel with their moral depravity.
So what we have occurring is God (of the Bible) using Israel as an instrument of His justice to purge the land of its sinfulness! It is SIN that God is fighting against – not people. Remember context! This is not a story of a people going into a land and destroying everyone/everything; rather this is a story of a cleansing or purging of sin to allow the inhabitants to live there, and it was, in fact, good for the land as well! Of course you probably know that Israel did not follow God’s (of the Bible) orders and when their sin got out of control, God did the same kinds of things to them – He used other nations like the Assyrians and the Babylonians as His instruments to cleanse the land by destroying the people of Israel for their sinfulness. So this isn’t injustice happening…it is pure JUSTICE happening. I hope you can see that.
Back to Islam now, and, specifically, Muhammad. His raids and wars were not about being against sin (not at all!). They were about killing and looting of enemies and amassing as much of the spoils of war as possible while setting up the rule of Islam (which means the rule of the pedophile prophet). There are plenty of Islamic writings that show proof of Muhammad’s fighting and destruction. Do your own homework because it is way too much to include here.
Also important to note is that in the Qur’an, there are commands to kill and destroy the enemies of Islam that are applicable for all times and places. No ones disputes that from the earliest times, right after the death of the prophet, all the way to today, Muslim groups have been fighting, killing and assassinating even each other, in the name of their false moon god. The history of Islam, down to the present day is filled with the appeals of various Muslims to Qur’anic passages to destroy and kill their enemies.
Finally, when we discuss violence and tolerance, I can’t help but show the ultimate difference as Paul describes how Jesus (of the Bible) patiently waited for him and then changed his life with eternal salvation. Compare this to the Quran:
“And I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who hath enabled me, for that he counted me faithful, putting me into the ministry; Who was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: but I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief. And the grace of our Lord was exceeding abundant with faith and love which is in Christ Jesus. This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief. Howbeit for this cause I obtained mercy, that in me first Jesus Christ might shew forth all longsuffering, for a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting. Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen.”
1st Timothy 1:12-17
Yeah, that’s the example to follow, folks. Jesus’ (of the Bible) example is one of love and patience – longsuffering as Paul put it in the King James Version of the Bible. There is tolerance in Christianity that doesn’t exist in the Quran, but even that tolerance, as we’ve seen in the Old Testament, has a limit. But the important piece to remember is that that limit is one of Holiness and Truth; it is not a limit of personal gain or attempt to assert oneself above others. God (of the Bible) does not approve of murder:
“Thou shalt not kill.”
There’s no way to find anything similar to God (of the Bible) in the Quran. That god is a false god of pain and hatred and there is no way to find any hint of Jesus (of the Bible) there because…
Jesus is NOT in the Quran!