When self-described ‘experts’ discuss religion, they often speak about the three ‘great’ religions, meaning Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. This is done, I think, to establish at the beginning a moral equivalence between the three; Moses equals Jesus equals Mohammed, right? Anyone who has actually studied something of the histories of each of these three faiths would disagree with such a misleading presumption, to say nothing of anyone who has studied the applied doctrines they live by. But the equivalence is an important element in Liberal blame-politics; the ‘blame-America’ crowd has to pretend a war against terrorism is a war against Islam, and rather than criticize Islam for its flaws, the faith must be presented as equal or superior to other faiths.
I mentioned the ‘great three’ lie, because it ignores a number of significant faiths, such as the Hindus and the Sikhs, and of course the Buddhists. Not so very long ago, the Taliban (I heard somewhere that they were Muslims) was going aroud blowing up large statues of the Buddha, in order to erase some inconvenient Afghan history. It helps to recall that Buddhism has been around for longer than Islam, and certainly long enough and with significant numbers in worship to be considered a major religion. Frankly, the practices of Buddhism stack up well historically with almost anyone. For instance, when was the last time anyone heard of a devout Buddhist who was a murdering despot? When was the last time that anyone heard of a bunch of Buddhists taking over a nation and then invading its neighbors in a conquest to impose Buddhism on other people by force. Sorry, doesn’t happen.
A religion becomes popular for any number of reasons, but it only survives a millenium because it has at least one basic truth to it. The reader will know by now that I find much in Islam to praise; a conviction of fundamental truths, a commitment to moral character, respect for tradition and spiritual growth. But the reader will also understand that Islam has ben hijacked a number of times in its history, and the present Jihadist is just such a situation. I cannot believe but that the latest fake ‘Mahdi’ will fail just as his predecessors did, and will cost many people their lives and security in doing so, to say nothing of once again killing the promise of Islamic culture as it was meant to be. But there is something which, oddly enough, the Jihadist movement may do to make a difference in the world for the better. I am speaking about bringing Christians around the world closer to the beliefs which Christ intended.
Hugh Hewitt interviewed author Robert Ferrigno about his book, “Prayers for the Assassin”, and linked to it on his site. In the interview, it was chilling how matter-of-factly Mr. Ferrigno mentioned that in the fictionalized America under Sharia, gays and lesbians would be summarily executed. I have no doubt, at all, that he is absolutely right,and this is one of those ‘flashbulb’ moments where a moral lesson becomes indelibly etched into my mind. Granted, in years past the Church has not been particularly kind to the GLBT community. I have always considered that, personally, to be a grave misreading of Scripture. Not because I am GLBT myself or believe that the lifestyle so often promoted by GLBT activists is a good moral choice, but when I go driving around and see the things which are available for entertainment - I could go to a bar and drink, and if I had the mind to, go to a bar where there were women in various stages of undress, all the way down to nude. I could pay to watch movies with extreme violence, or if that was not good enough, the web offers films of all kinds of real violence, up to real killings. And then there are casinos, where a hard-working man can ruin his life in one night if he’s stupid enough, and all sorts of similar temptations. But that’s America, liberty and pursuit of happiness assured, even if that pursuit destroys your life and soul.
Don’t think I’m arguing to take that freedom away, though. Making the U.S. a prison where you are compelled to do the right thing is useless, and more than a little hypocritical, since some people are always in position to do as they please, and in any case, forcing people to do the right thing when they don’t want to, does nothing to make them desire virtue. Sharia does not understand this, and the imposition of brutal punishment for effectively trivial offenses and personal choices is the mark of evil. even the strictest ‘God hates homosexuality’ ranter I know, stops short of wanting them dead, but Sharia would kill them quick as the Mullahs could find them. And facing that fact might wake up a lot of Christians. The differences between believers and followers of the Messiah Jesus quickly dissolve when we see real evil. Not Islam, but the perverted message of Jihad which thinks to take over the world. The ‘Caliphate’ they desire must be opposed, not because it is Muslim but because it serves death instead of life, fear instead of hope, and terror instead of understanding. The tools identify the spirit behind the mask. And if there is any good to such a vision, it is that we can quickly identify the people who are just like us where it really counts, and put away some of the things which have only led to factions and bickering in the past.