Once again the issue has been raised regarding Islam and whether or not it is a religion of peace or violence. The Christian Bible uses the word “love” 409 times with 223 of those in the New Testament. The Qur’an uses the word 79 times in these five categories:
(1) Man's love of things. (15 times)
(2) Human love. (15 times)
(3) Man's love for God. (7 times)
(4) God's love in the negative sense, i.e. "God loveth not ..." (22 times)
(5)God's love for man. (20 times)
While the Bible was written in Aramaic it has been translated into Greek, Latin, and a host of other languages including English. Although there have been disputes at various times over the translation of the original text, there is general agreement overall. This is much the situation with the Qur’an which is written in Arabic and translated into English. The above references are from a translation by Abdullah Yusuf Ali, but the translation by Amatul Rahman Omar and Abdul Mannan Omar which is sanctioned by the Noor Foundation (similar to Gideons) has some significant variances. For example in verses 14:3 and 16:107 Abdullah Yusef uses the word “love” while the Amatul translates the same word as “preferred”. In fact there are some very significant variations between these two translations, with the former translating the Arabic more liberally than the latter. In fact in checking various translations, I have found some very significant variances in the translation which significantly change the meaning.
The failure of the Qur’an to use the word “love” is not in itself an indication that Islam is more violent than Christianity but the reality is that the Qur’an is filled with exhortations to violence for a variety of reasons. Furthermore, the Qur’an specifically states (5:51) that a Muslim is NOT to take Jews and Christians for allies and any Muslim who does so becomes one of them. Then again in Chapter 9 there are multiple verses exhorting Muslims to fight the non-believers and those “who have been given he scripture” but do not follow it. In Chapter 22:39 Muslims are given permission to fight in self-defense against those who have attacked them for no reason. Certainly this verse can be stretched to justify the current attacks by Muslims on all non-Muslims on the basis that these people and their governments have wronged or otherwise “attacked” Muslims.
The treatment of prisoners is specifically spelled out in various treaties and in the Geneva Convention in particular, but these are Western views established by secular governments. Within the world of Islam, secular governments are secondary to the religious structure so the Qur’an takes precedence over laws or agreements made by these secular governments. The Qur’an specifically (4:81 and 4:91) calls the killing of captives permissible. Nevertheless Western governments continue to act as if treaties and agreements between them and these Islamic governments carry weight – they do not. The Western Governments continue to abide by the Geneva Convention and act shocked when the Islamofascists do not but instead murder innocent civilians, execute captives in barbaric ways, and hide behind human shields. Furthermore, the Qur’an specifically directs Muslims to not take Jews and Christians as allies (5:51) because they are in league against Islam. And 5:101 specifically forbids Muslims from inquiring into divine laws (i.e. Qur’an and Shar’ia) lest they become disbelievers. Of course this simply reinforces the control the Imam’s have over the believers who are kept ignorant by disallowing and rejecting any education outside of the Qur’an.
Now the Muslim Imam’s insist that Islam is a religion of peace and go to great lengths to demonstrate this. But the reality is that the Qur’an is filled with exhortations to violence to fight, to kill, to destroy. Certainly the word love is found in the Qur’an but the usage of this word is largely an matter of interpretation and certainly does not exhort the reader or believer to “love” their fellow man or to forgive trespasses. While it is true that there are many passages in the Qur’an that deal with forgiveness that are just as many that preach violence against non-believers. An example of this dichotomy is found in chapters 5:32 and 5:33
If anyone slays a person- unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land -it would be as if he slew all people.And if anyone saves a life,it would be as if he saved the life of all people.
However this quote does not include the entire verse and the beginning of this verse states “
Because of this incident we laid down for the Children of Israel that he who kills a human being – unless it be for murdering a person or for (reforming) disorder in the country ....
The next verse (5:33) is a little more specific and states:
The only recompense of those who make war against Allah and His Messenger and who strive hard to create disorder in the land, is (according to the nature of the crime) that tehy be executed or crucified to death, or that their hands and feet be cut off on account of their opposition, or their free movement in the land be banned ...”
So the reality is that these verses are taken out of context and thus can be interpreted in various ways. These verses are part of Section 5 of Chapter 5 which deals with the sin of murder as described between Cain and Abel. But it also puts this crime and others into the framework of crimes against Allah and describes the punishments for those who commit crimes against Allah.
There are various verses that exhort the believer to violence but 9:29 through 9:35 generally encourage or direct the true believer to attack Christians and Jews as non-believers. So while Islam may view itself as a religion of peace it does not require much of a stress for a radical Muslim to find that it instructs him to attack and destroy all non-believers. The fact is that the current war on terror is simply another Crusade between Islam and Christendom.