Islam: The Religion of War (II)

Let’s take a look at Muhammad’s teachings recorded in the Hadiths.

“The Prophet said, “A single endeavour of fighting in Allah’s Cause is better than the world and whatever is in it” (Bukhari 4:52:50).

“A man came to Allah’s Apostle and said, “Instruct me as to such a deed as equals Jihad in reward: He replied, ‘I do not find such a deed” (Bukhari 4:52:44).

“Allah’s Apostle was asked, ‘What is the best deed?’ He replied, ‘To believe in Allah and His Apostle Muhammad.’ The questioner then asked ‘What is the next best in goodness?’ He replied ‘To participate in Jihad, religious struggle in Allah’s Cause” (Bukhari 1:2:25).

Allah’s Apostle said “I have been ordered to fight the people till they say ‘None has the right to be worshipped but Allah” (Bukhari 8:387)

On the day of the Conquest [of Mecca] the Prophet said, “There is no emigration after the Conquest but Jihad and intentions. When you are called [by the Muslim ruler] for fighting, go forth immediately” (Bukhari 4:52:79).

When the Prophet returned [from jihad], he would say ‘Takbir’ thrice and add “We are returning, if Allah wishes, with repentance and worshipping and praising and
prostrating ourselves before our Lord. Allahfulfilled His promise and helped His Slave, and He alone defeated the [infidel] clans” (Bukhari 4:52:317)

During the affliction of Ibn Az-Zubair, two men came to Ibn Umar and said, ‘The people are lost, and you are the son of ‘Umar, and the companion of the Prophet, so what forbids you from coming out? He said, ‘What forbids me is that Allah has prohibited the shedding of my brother’s blood.’ They both said, ‘Didn’t Allah say, “And fight them until there is no more affliction?” He said ‘We fought until there was no more affliction and the worship is for Allah alone while you want to fight until there is affliction and until the worship become for other than Allah” (Bukhari 6:60:40).

He said: “Swords are the keys of paradise … Paradise is under the shadow of swords … He who draws his sword in the path of Allah has sworn an allegiance to Allah … The unbelievers and the one who kills him will never meet in Hell” (Kanz Muttaqi 2:252-86).

Ibn Qayyim said that when Muhammad “called people to Islam, his call was accompanied by the sword” (Sahih Jaami, 2831).

He said: “Whoever dies without having fought [for Islam] or thought to himself about fighting has died following one of the branches of hypocrisy” (Sahih Muslim, 3533).

Three people are in Allah’s safekeeping: a man who goes out to fight in Allah’s path, who is in Allah’s safekeeping till He takes his soul and brings him to paradise, or send him home with the reward or booty he has obtained…” (Mishkat al-Masabih, 811).

In the Sira, a Quranic passage is reiterated saying: “Allah said, ‘A prophet must slaughter before collecting captives. A slaughtered enemy is driven from the land. Muhammad, you craved the desires of this world, its goods and the ransom captives would bring. But Allah desires killing them to manifest the religion” (The Life of Muhammad, a translation of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasulullah, 1995, p. 327).

Elsewhere, Muhammad is quoted saying: “Fight everyone in the way of Allah and kill those who disbelieve in Allah” (Sirat, 992). Thus, it can be seen that war is inexorably tied to Islam. Without violence and bloodshed, Islam will wither and die.

The Islamic Trail of Blood

After Muhammad’s death, one of his first converts, Abu Bakr was selected as a successor (caliph). Most of the Meccans who had hitherto been forced into Islam by Muhammad found it so revolting and ghastly that after his death, they abandoned Islam and became apostates.

To make it worse, many of the people stopped paying the jizya taxes levied on them to Abu Bakr, the caliph. He rose up and fought them like a wounded lion. He burned many of them, stoned some to death, threw them from cliffs or cast them in wells. Hundreds of thousands died in this War of Apostasy (The History of Al-Tabari 4: 1392).

Umar Ibn Khattab succeeded Abu Bakr. He was like the “apostle Paul” of Islam who extended the kingdom of Allaah from Mecca to other nations. He raised armies which conquered Damascus (635 AD), Antioch (636 AD), Jerusalem (638), Syria (640), Egypt and Persia (641). Entire populations of cities like Behnesa, Aboit and Fayum in Egypt, Tripoli in Libya and Euchaita in Armenia were massacred. Carthage in Tunisia was burnt to the ground.

These Arab conquests, (which modern Muslims call “defensive battles”) according to a historian were “more rapid than the Roman, more lasting that the Mongol … the most amazing feat in military history” (Will Durant, The Story of Civilization, Simon and Schuster, 1950, 4:188)

Uthman, a Persian, succeeded Umar. But by this time, Islam had splintered into different warring sects. Conflicting versions of the Quran were being recited and kept by different groups but Uthman forced all Muslims to accept his own “standardized Quran” (still the Quran used today) in order to exert his political control. He was hated so much that a rival Muslim faction assassinated him. He wasn’t even allowed to be buried in a Muslim cemetery. His friends had to bury him by night in a Jewish cemetery.

Ali ibn Talib (Muhammad’s cousin) became the next caliph. Aisha (Muhammad’s child bride) supported a rebellion against him resulting in the Battle of the Camel where about 10,000 people died. Ali won, but was assassinated in 661 AD by a rival Muslim faction. His followers broke away and became known as the Shi’ites – still hated by the Sunni Muslims today.

From history, you can see that when Muslims succeed in wiping out all non-Muslims, they start to murder fellow Muslims. It’s a legacy of Muhammad and this is what is going on in several nations (including Nigeria) today.

Wars over who would succeed Ali erupted, pitting Quraish against Bedouins, Umayyads against Hasmites such that by 680 A.D, most of Muhammad’s lineage had been killed by rival Muslims. At a point, the troops of Yezid beseiged Mecca, burnt down the kaaba and split the black stone into 3 pieces. This was the time the Masjid al-aqsa in Jersualem became the focal point of Islamic convergence.

This is a huge contrast to the apostles of Jesus Christ who went everywhere preaching the gospel. And God bore “them witness both with signs and wonders, and gifts of the Holy Spirit” (Hebrews 2:4). When you have the truth, you don’t have to wage war or fight to impose it on others. And when you are serving the Living God, you don’t need to fight for Him.

The early Christians didn’t conquer nations or plunder their wealths like Muslim armies. Their focus was on a “better country” not made with human hands (Heb. 11:16). They didn’t take lives; they gave theirs. They were thrown to the beasts, crucified and made human torches. They reddened the soil with their blood and in the midst of the flames cried out “Christ is Victor!” They “esteemed the reproaches of Christ greater than the riches of Egypt” (Heb. 11:26). That is the real peace and love.

A modern Christian who keeps arguing (in spite of the facts) that Islam is a religion of peace is despising the blood of the millions of martyrs who have been victims of this death cult. And if you are a Muslim reading this, you have a choice to make today: to follow the Holy One or the Wicked one; to follow Christ who died for you or Barabbas who will doom you; to follow the Prince of Peace or the Arabian warlord. The choice you make now will determine your eternal destination.


Islam: The Religion of War (I)

The hoary slogan of “Islam is peace” has been drowned by bomb blasts amidst chants of “Allahu Akbar!” in Nigeria, Egypt, Syria, Iraq, Central Africa and other parts of the world. For years, many people have argued that Islam is basically a good religion but has been hijacked by some “hot headed” radicals. Some Christians who have neither read the Quran nor the hadiths even assert that “Islam is peace because I have peaceful Muslim friends and neighbours!”

It must be noted however, that it is the examples and teachings of religion’s founder that determine whether these peaceful adherents are the norms or exceptions. So in order to answer that question, let’s take a brief look at the life of Muhammad and his teachings.

Muhammad began his Medinan career by attacking rich Meccan caravans passing near his base. The first 3 assaults failed while the fourth succeeded because his victims didn’t expect an ambush during Ramadan. Arab tribes refrained from aggression during their pagan “holy month,” but Muhammad received a “revelation” authorizing him to plunder and murder in Allah’s name (Q 2:217). It’s curious that the same Allah who commanded Muhammad to raid people didn’t teach him how to do it. He had to learn it by trial and error like any greenhorn thief.

On March 16, 624 near Badr, he led 300 warriors in a vicious attack against a large Meccan caravan protected by 800 men. At last, 40 Meccans were killed and 60 taken as prisoners. Only 14 Muslims died. Verses quickly “descended” to absolve his men of the murders: “Ye slew them not, but Allah slew them” (8:17). Muhammad proved his prophethood with the sword and sealed his apostleship with blood.

One of the Meccans captured at the battle of Badr was Al-Nadir – Muhammad’s enemy – who pleaded with his tribesmen, now Muslims to spare his life. (The Quraish tribe do not kill war captives) He was told that the tribe bonds are now broken by Islam and since he had ridiculed Muhammad years before, it’s payback time. After he was killed, Muhammad recited a verse to justify it: “It is not for any Prophet to have captives until he had made slaughter in the land” (Q 8:67).

Muhammad arrived at Medina a poor man, but within a few years, he and his gang became wealthy. Their wealth came by robbing and killing the Jews in Medina, causing the disappearance of the Jewish communities from Arabia. This genocide was also justified by some verses (Q 33:26-7).

Poets who criticized Muhammad were not spared – from Asma bint Merwan to Abu Afak, to Kab Al-Ashraf. Muhammad justified their assassination by reciting that all poets were “inspired by Satan” (26:221-7).

Some Muslims in Medina (who apparently didn’t agree with jihad) built a mosque and invited Muhammad to bless it. He burnt down this mosque and recited:

“As for those who put up a mosque by way of harming and disbelief, and to disunite the believers, and as an outpost for those who warred against Allah and his messenger aforetime … Allah bears witness that they are certainly liars. Never set foot in it” (9:107-108). This set a precedent for Muslims destroying mosques that they judge to have deviated into heresy.

Allah’s dogmas in the Quran are clear:

Warfare is ordained for you, though it is hateful unto you; but it may happen that ye hate a thing which is good for you, and it may happen that ye love a thing which is bad for you. Allah knoweth, ye know not” (Sura 2:216).

And slay them wherever ye find them, and drive them out of the places whence they drove you out, for persecution [of Muslims] is worse than slaughter [of non-Muslims] … but if desist, then lo! Allah is forgiving and merciful. And fight them until persecution is no more, and religion is for Allah.” (Sura 2:191-193)

Soon shall We cast terror into the hearts of the Unbelievers, for that they joined companions with Allah, for which He had sent no authority” (Sura 3:151)

Let those fight in the way of Allah who sell the life of this world for the other. Whoso fighteth in the way of Allah, be he slain or be he victorious, on him We shall bestow a vast reward.” (Sura 4:74)

Those who believe do battle for the cause of Allah; and those who disbelieve do battle for the cause of idols. So fight the minions of the devil. Lo! the devil´s strategy is ever weak” (Sura 4:76)

They but wish that ye should reject Faith, as they do, and thus be on the same footing (as they): But take not friends from their ranks until they flee in the way of Allah (from what is forbidden). But if they turn renegades, seize them and slay them wherever ye find them; and (in any case) take no friends or helpers from their ranks.” (Sura 4:89)

The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His messenger and strive to make mischief in the land is only this, that they should be murdered or crucified or their hands and their feet should be cut off on opposite sides or they should be imprisoned; this shall be as a disgrace for them in this world and in the hereafter they shall have a grievous chastisement.” (Sura 5:33)

I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them.” (Sura 8:12)

O ye who believe! When ye meet those who disbelieve in battle, turn not your backs to them. Whoso on that day turneth his back to them, unless maneuvering for battle or intent to join a company, he truly hath incurred wrath from Allah, and his habitation will be hell, a hapless journey’s end.” (Sura 8:15-16)

And fight with them until there is no more persecution and religion should be only for Allah.” (Sura 8:39)

If thou comest on them in war, deal with them so as to strike fear in those who are behind them, that haply they may remember” (Sura 8:57).

O Prophet, exhort the believers (Muslims) to fight…” (Sura 8:65).

Lo! Allah loveth them who battle for His cause in ranks, as if they were a solid structure” (Sura 61:4).

In total, there are 100+ verses related to war in the Quran. Some Muslims try to evade these by saying: “These verses are only for the battlefield.” This argument is demonstrably false.

1. The Quranic war verses are explicitly offensive e.g

Q 4:77 “Have you not seen those to whom it was said: Withhold your hands, and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate; but when fighting is prescribed for them, lo! a party of them fear men as they ought to have feared Allah, or (even) with a greater fear, and say: Our Lord! why hast Thou ordained fighting for us? Wherefore didst Thou not grant us a delay to a near end? Say: The provision of this world is short, and the hereafter is better for him who guards (against evil); and you shall not be wronged the husk of a date stone

From this, it can be deduced that even Muhammad’s followers were initially reluctant to wage war against non-Muslims, but Muhammad convinced them to believe that this was Allah’s injuction which must be obeyed.

Q 47:4  “Now when ye meet those who disbelieve, smite their necks until when ye have slain them greatly, then make fast the bonds; then, thereafter let them off either freely or by ransom, until the war layeth down the burthens thereof. That ye shall do. And had Allah willed, He would have vindicated Himself against them, but He ordained fighting in order that He may prove you one by the other. And those who are slain in the way of Allah, He shall not send their works astray

Some English translators have slotted in “in war” after “when ye meet those who disbelieve” to make it seem like defensive war, but such an effort lacks textual basis and is self-defeating. In this verse, we are told that if Allah willed, he could have fought his own enemies himself to defend his name, but he just choose to use human slaves for his nefarious works. That is a self-admission of how weak Allah is.

Q 9:41 “Go forth, light-armed and heavy-armed, and strive with your wealth and your lives in the way of Allah! That is best for you if ye but knew

This is not self-defense but a call to offensive war.

Q 9:5 “Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them, and take them (captive), and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish worship and pay the poor-due, then leave their way free…”

This is indicting that unless the non-Muslims embrace Islam they are to be slain. Note also that the Arabic word “quateloo” which means “kill” was used here. Some English translators have censored the text to read: “Fight against the idolaters.”

2. From the contexts behind these verses, Muhammad and his army were the aggressors. They were the ones who initiated battles against non-Muslims. It is recorded that they fought a total of 63 battles with Muhammad personally leading 27 raids. Of all these wars, only two were defensive – the battle of Uhud and the battle of the Trench (or Confederates).

3. From an overall look of the Quran, it’s clear that the god of Islam relishes wanton destruction of lives and it is inconceivable that such a violent god would inspire a religion of peace.

4. The early Meccan verses which call for peace have been abrogated by the later verses of the sword. The earlier verses typify when Muslims are a minority while the latter exemplify when they become a majority. Therefore, Islam has a bifurcate form depending on its political or military strength in a geographical location.

The feeble attempts of Muslims to project their jihad mentality onto Christianity does not stand up to Biblical knowledge, theology and sound interpretation.

The Quran says Muhammad is the “perfect example” for all Muslims and all Muslims who love Allah must follow him (33:21). Thus, true Muslims must fight as he fought, kill as he killed and take women captives as he did, otherwise they are hypocrites (munafiq). No rational mind should expect anything better from a billion people who not only take a terrorist as a role model, but also follow, condone and defend his crimes.

On the other hand Christians have a perfect example in Jesus Christ who told no lie nor murdered His critics (1Pet. 2:22-3). Those who follow Him act like Him and for a Muslim to truly follow Christ, he must reject Muhammad.