Surah 4:89 "seize them and slay them wherever you find them." (And for those wondering if that verse has been taken out of context, it hasn't: Quran Chapter 4).
The other day I was the main guest for the Skeptics and Believers YouTube show. I thought it went pretty well, although it was challenging dealing with Michael's absurd objections.
His main objection was that I was taking verses from the Qur'an out of context. But that just isn't the case. Verses like Surah 4:89 are just one of hundreds of violent verses from the Qur'an that are on nearly every page (see my blog post on the Quran at the bottom of this post), and unlike the Bible there aren't any verses in the Qur'an that are telling Muslims to love their non-Muslim neighbours, and certainly they aren't commanded to love their enemies like Jesus commanded us to do.
(This link refutes the idea that Verses of violence are taken out of context. And this link refutes the idea that Muslims Only Kill in Self-Defense.)
Also, Islam is not just the Qur'an - it is the Qur'an and the Sunnah, which is the sayings and actions of Muhammad as recorded in the Hadith. The most authentic hadiths are Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim, and these are even more violent than the Qur'an.
review of the Sira and blog post on the Quran)
Bible Reading vs Quran
Another issue that came up was how many Christians have read all of the Bible vs how many Muslims have read all of the Qur'an. In relation to this I found this survey that says that amongst evangelical Christians in the USA 61% say they have read all of the Bible, and 1 in 5 Americans say they've read all of it).
The reason that this is important is because apologists for Islam often argue (as Michael did) that if Islam was really so violent why aren't all Muslims violent. That's an absurd argument especially given the fact that most Muslims (perhaps 99%) haven't read all of the Qur'an. And even if they have read it doesn't mean they've understood it, especially if they've just mindlessly recited it in Arabic (which is often what happens). The emphasis in Islam is simply not on studying and understanding the Qur'an or Hadith, and so Muslims often just don't believe that the Qur'an is full of violence and evil but have been brainwashed into believing what other Muslims have told them about Islam being "peace".
Even if half of Christians or more haven't read all of the Bible - they aren't the ones going around committing acts of terrorism. And when Christians do read the Bible and decide to take it literally and obey it - they become more loving people because the message of love is so clear in the Bible. Of course objectors point out groups like Westboro Baptist, but they are a tiny minority and clearly distorting true Christianity and most people would call them a cult. Westboro aren't even killing people anyway.
And even if orthodox Jews tried to take the Old Testament verses of violence out of context and try and kill Canaanites they aren't going to kill anyone because the Canaanites don't exist today.
Compare this to fundamentalist Islam and there is serious cause for concern especially given that worldwide statistics show that at least 10% of Muslims are fundamentalist. In some countries that figure is much higher. (See here for statistics).
Pedophilia in Islam vs Marriage in Jewish Culture
We don't know how old Mary was when she was betrothed to Joseph. For all we know she could have been 18. And as I tried to explain in the discussion it's absurd to compare Muhammad having sex with a 9 year old and Mary miraculously having a virgin birth at an older age. As Christians we don't follow Joseph or Mary anyway - we follow Jesus, but Muslims follow Muhammad, and Muhammad married Aisha when she was 6 and consummated the marriage when she was 9 and he was 53.
After doing a bit of research I found that the absolute minimum age for marriage under Judaism was 12 for girls and 13 for boys. (See Muhammad, Aisha, Islam, and Child Brides - Appendix 2 - Jewish Culture and Marriage)
There is no minimum age for marriage in Islam and the marriage of prepubescent girls is permitted. (See above article and also here and here).
The order of the Qur'an is from longest chapter to shortest. (See Chronological Order of Quran). This is important because it's the latter part of the Qur'an that is more violent and the latter part of the Qur'an "abrogates" (supersedes) the earlier more peaceful parts.
Fireworks at End of Discussion
I'm convinced that the reason that Michael and Joe lost it at the end is because they have no basis for truth in their worldview. That's why they object to presuppositional apologetics and get angry about it.
In the previous discussion with Michael he said that he didn't believe in absolutes. (See here). When I asked him if that was absolutely true he got angry and tried to block the discussion because it exposed the absurdity of his worldview which is not founded in Christ but on humanism. I'm not saying that Michael isn't a Christian (although I do seriously wonder) - I'm just saying that at the very least his beliefs have serious problems at a foundational level. It's telling that when I asked him if he accepted that the Bible is true he wouldn't even answer that.
As for Joe who is a professed atheist, I can definitely understand why he started swearing and getting angry when I challenged him with the issue of truth. You can't get truth without God, and presuppositional apologetics exposes that fact. So rather than honestly deal with difficult questions he got angry.
The accusation that I was preaching was a smokescreen. I just quoted a verse from the Bible and asserted that I know that the Bible is true and Islam is false. At that point there was no point in continuing because they were trying to control the conversation and dictate what could and couldn't be said. So rather than abandon my Christian foundation and continue the discussion as if we could just neutrally examine things I felt it was best for me to hang up.
After I'd Hung Up
After I'd left the discussion Michael, Joe and James continued the show for about another 10 minutes. Michael quoted this verse from the Qur'an:
Surah 3:134 "Those who spend (benevolently) in ease as well as in straitness,
and those who restrain (their) anger and pardon men; and Allah loves the doers of good (to others)."
This doesn't show whether or not Islam is loving or hateful. In the wider context of the whole Qur'an it can only be logically interpreted as meaning doing good to other Muslims and pardoning Muslims. I say this because there are many many more verses in the Qur'an like this:
"Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah, and those who are with him are severe against disbelievers,
and merciful among themselves." (Surah 48:29)
"O Prophet! Make war on the unbelievers and the hypocrites.
Be harsh with them. Their ultimate abode is hell, a hapless journey's end." (Surah 9:73)
Michael then quoted Matthew 5:44 where Jesus said, "But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you", and accused me of not being loving. This is absurd. It's because of a deep love for Muslims that I care enough to speak the truth about Islam in the hope that they'd come to know the truth that is found in Jesus Christ. Furthermore, the Bible commands us to hate. Romans 12:9 says, "Hate what is evil." And Proverbs 8:13 says, "To fear the LORD is to hate evil; I hate pride and arrogance, evil behavior and perverse speech."
Hate for Islam is not hate for Muslims. I think that often people get confused at this and think that anyone who speaks negatively about Islam is automatically speaking negatively about all Muslims. But we need to differentiate between hating that which is evil, and loving those who need to hear the truth. If a person is heading for a cliff, who is more loving, the person who smiles and says to them 'have a nice day' or the person who warns them of the cliff? Clearly true love warns people if they are in danger.
The way Michael makes it sound we should be baking cakes for ISIS to show our love for our enemy. Loving your enemy doesn't mean helping them to kill you or wage war against you. That's not what Jesus meant, and if Michael professes to believe that I highly doubt that he lives that way. I'd go further than this and say that Michael is not showing love to Muslims who are in bondage to Islam by not challenging them on their false beliefs. He is not showing love to those who are forced into marriage as young children under Islam. He is not showing love to those who suffer FGM (Female Genital Mutilation). He is not showing love to the women in Islam who are being beaten by their husbands because the Qur'an condones it. He is not showing love to our Christian brothers and sisters in the Middle East and Africa who are being put to death by Muslims just because of their faith. He really is ignorant of what Islam is - and this was shown clearly when he said that Muslims believe that Jesus is the son of God. It's Islam 101 that Muslims don't accept that Jesus is the son of God. Again and again in the Qur'an it says that Allah does not have a son.
Michael then went on to say that the verses in the Qur'an that say that the Bible is true are only referring to the Old Testament and not the New. That's just not true. I go through the verses relating to this on my website www.godorabsurdity.com/islam.html. It's called the Islamic dilemma and it's a powerful argument. The verses in the Qur'an referring to Bible being true relate to the Old Testament AND the New Testament. The idea that the New Testament has been changed is not in the Qur'an but is a popular Muslim belief.
After that Michael made the statement that there were plenty of Christians prior to the council of Nicea that didn't believe that Jesus died on the cross. This is absolutely absurd nonsense. A person isn't a Christian if they don't believe that. It's a central tenet of Christianity.
Then Michael seemed to be saying that he isn't sure if Jesus is God or not. (@1:47:30).
He said, "I'm not going to sit there and try and make the philosophical argument as to whether Christ is literally God, or some kind of strange other being. I happen to believe in Christ's teachings and that's enough for me."
This is so ignorant and bordering on heresy I'm flabbergasted. The doctrine of the deity of Christ is central to Christianity and those that deny this are cult groups that aren't Christian such as JWs or Mormons. Jesus said, "I told you that you would die in your sins; if you do not believe that I am he, you will indeed die in your sins.
“Very truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!” At this, they picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus hid himself, slipping away from the temple grounds." (John 8:24, 58,59)
The reason the Jews tried to stone him was for blasphemy. Because they realised that Jesus was claiming to be God. Jesus was echoing Exodus 3:14 where YHWH revealed himself to Moses as "I am".
It's as if every time Michael opens his mouth in these kinds of discussions nearly everything he says is wrong. Almost every sentence he spoke had some kind of wrong information in it. That's why at one point I said, "Where do I start?". It wasn't because I was confused - it was because in just a few minutes of talking Michael had said so many things that were incorrect. I could say so much more to address what was said, but I think I've got all of the main issues so I'll leave it there.
P.S. This about sums up the situation:
For Further Reading / Research: