I was watching a Youtube video today of a guy who was doing a commentary about the mosque that is supposed to be built a few blocks from ground zero in New York. While the guy did seem to know what he was talking about, I found myself thinking less about what he was saying and more about the overall state of our country.
Now this post will not be political in nature so relax. I don’t even want to go there right now. But it is interesting to think about history and the behavior of Muslims throughout the centuries compared to that of Christians.
Now, right off the bat I have to make a disclaimer. When I refer to Christians I am referring to true followers of Christ, not empires who did political and social conquest in the name of Christ. The true Christian’s goal is not conquest and empire building.
The other part of my disclaimer, however, is to say that when I refer to Muslims, I am referring not to the casual, secular Muslims of this world, but those who truly espouse the fundamentals of Islam.
This whole comparison is extremely interesting. One might ask, well why would you characterize some Muslims as those who truly espouse the Muslim faith as if some don’t? I do this for the same reason there are lukewarm, secular “Christians.”
The lukewarm Christian is afraid to be persecuted and therefore is afraid to stand up for his faith. It is nearly impossible, if at all, to distinguish a lukewarm Christian from anyone else who is in the world. They don’t want to make a scene nor alienate themselves from their peers or cause unrest in their environment. They would much rather blend in and preserve the peace rather than stand up for the truth of their faith. Consequently they have no affect on society at all. In essence, these people are Christians in name only and only when it’s convenient for them.
Compare these lukewarm Christians to today’s secular Muslim. Modern secular Muslims seek not to offend or make waves. They express outrage over “radical fundamentalists” who kill others in the name of their “peaceful” religion. They would much rather blend in and preserve the peace rather than stand up for the the fundamentals of their faith like the radicals.
But a closer look at the other end of the spectrum of each of the faiths and we should see the true nature of each and, consequently, the true spirit behind this looming crisis that America is living though right now.
The word “fundamental” by definition describes getting to the root or core truth of something. One must learn the fundamentals of mathematics in order to be a true mathematician. And every true mathematician follows the fundamentals of math as their absolute necessary foundation to all they do. Everything they do is done, if you will, in full obedience and devotion to the fundamentals.
With this in mind, then, an Islamic fundamentalist is someone who lives their life in full obedience and devotion to the fundamentals of Islam. That is why it is a fallacy to call Islam a religion of peace.
True Christianity on the other hand, fundamental Christianity, is not Bible thumping, loud preaching, and legalistic condemnation as some people may perceive it to be. No, true Christianity, fundamental Christianity, is a life lived in full obedience and devotion, not to a religion, but to the Person of Jesus Christ who gave the ultimate gift of love to redeem a fallen humanity.
Someone who is a devoted follower of Mohammed, then, will seek to live in obedience to the Qu’ran. Throughout history, Islam has had the singular goal of conquest – to slowly and patiently infiltrate society for the purpose of eventually establishing Islamic rule. But the motivation behind this establishment of their faith is not love, but hatred of all who are not Muslim. This in fact is the very heart of Islam. The Islamic fundamentalist, therefore, is merely being true and devoted to the core, fundamental teachings of the heart of Islam.
In stark contrast, a true follower and devotee of Jesus Christ has as his motivation, not conquest from a motivation of hatred, but the redemption of sinners with the motivation of love. In fact, a true follower of Christ is instructed to “have the same attitude that Christ Jesus had. Though he was God, he did not think of equality with God as something to cling to. Instead, he gave up his divine privileges; he took the humble position of a slave and was born as human being. When he appeared in human form, he humbled himself in obedience to God and died a criminal’s death on a cross.” (Philippians 2:5-8 NLT)
So then, there are the the fundamental differences between the fundamentals of the two faiths. The one, Islam, seeks conquest and the domination of a people motivated by hatred, while the other, devotion to the Person of Christ, at it’s fundamental core operates in humility and love and seeks to share a life-changing truth that will ultimately save the eternal lives of those who choose to believe it.