Part IV




Note: The following is largely excerpted from the book "Whoever You Thought You Were ... You're A Jew!"



Self-appointed Qur'an commentators have done a masterful job of persuading the world that they are under a binding commandment from the prophet Muhammad to murder all non-Muslims, and to proclaim Islam to be the sole lawful religion of the planet Earth.

They refer to this as "jihad", an Arabic word interpreted to mean "holy war". The enemies in this "holy war" are said to be Jews and Christians primarily, but Hindus, Buddhists and others may be included. Some self-appointed commentators even go beyond religion in identifying their perceived "enemies", and include Caucasians generally, implying that Islam is somehow a religion of the "colored" races.

The entire "jihad" story is an elaborate work of fiction. It is publicized continuously by world banking interests, whose object is the destruction of all religion, including Islam, and the replacement of the fear of God by the fear of money. Their money.

Is there a commandment for "holy war"? Yes, there is. But, like monotheism in general, it did not originate in the Qur'an, and was not changed by it in any important way.

The commandment for holy war was promulgated by Moses, and was defined quite satisfactorily in the Torah. The commandment was given repeatedly, beginning at the time of the Exodus itself and continuing up to the actual invasion of the Holy Land by the Israelites 40 years later.

That there would be such war was pre-ordained in the days of Abraham, during his sojourn in Israel, about 600 years before the Exodus. In the Book of Genesis, God announced his Covenant with Abraham, saying at that time:

"Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates; the Kenite, and the Kenizzite, and the Kadmonite, and the Hittite, and the Perizzite, and the Rephaim, and the Amorite, and the Canaanite, and the Girgashite, and the Jebusite".

Genesis 15:18-20

The names are the names of the ancient tribes who occupied Israel before the Exodus. It is not explicitly stated that they are to be removed, or that a war would be involved.

Nor was the inevitability of war necessarily clear to Moses in his first encounter with God, at the Burning Bush. There God said, concerning the Children of Israel:

"I am come down to deliver them out of the hands of the Egyptians, and to bring them up out of that land unto a good land and a large, unto a land flowing with milk and honey; unto the place of the Canaanite, and the Hittite, and the Amorite, and the Perizzite, and the Hivite, and the Jebusite."

Exodus 3:8

Couldn't this have meant "peaceful coexistence"? Theoretically, perhaps. But when God later gave Moses the Ten Commandments and the Law on Mount Sinai, the painful nature of what was about to happen began to emerge:

Behold, I send an angel before thee, to keep thee by the way, and to bring thee into the place which I have prepared. Take heed of him, and hearken unto his voice; be not rebellious against him; for he will not pardon your transgression; for My name is in him.

But if thou shalt indeed hearken unto his voice, and do all that I speak; then I will be an enemy unto thine enemies, and an adversary unto thine adversaries. For Mine angel shall go before thee, and bring thee in unto the Amorite, and the Hittite, and the Perizzite, and the Canaanite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite; and I will cut them off.

Thou shalt not bow down to their gods, nor serve them, nor do after their doings; but thou shalt utterly overthrow them, and break in pieces their pillars. And ye shall serve the LORD your God, and He will bless thy bread, and thy water; and I will take sickness away from the midst of thee. None shall miscarry, nor be barren, in thy land; the number of thy days I will fulfil.

I will send My terror before thee, and will discomfit all the people to whom thou shalt come, and I will make all thine enemies turn their backs unto thee. And I will send the hornet before thee, which shall drive out the Hivite, the Canaanite, and the Hittite, from before thee.

I will not drive them out from before thee in one year, lest the land become desolate, and the beasts of the field multiply against thee. By little and little I will drive them out from before thee, until thou be increased, and inherit the land.

And I will set thy border from the Red Sea even unto the sea of the Philistines, and from the wilderness unto the River [i.e., Euphrates]; for I will deliver the inhabitants of the land into your hand; and thou shalt drive them out before thee.

Thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor with their gods. They shall not dwell in thy land—lest they make thee sin against Me, for thou wilt serve their gods—for they will be a snare unto thee.

Exodus 23:20-33

The full horror of the holy war commanded by God was finally spelled out, in detail, in Moses' final discourses in the Book of Deuteronomy:

When the LORD thy God shall bring thee into the land whither thou goest to possess it, and shall cast out many nations before thee, the Hittite, and the Girgashite, and the Amorite, and the Canaanite, and the Perizzite, and the Hivite, and the Jebusite, seven nations greater and mightier than thou; and when the LORD thy God shall deliver them up before thee, and thou shalt smite them; then thou shalt utterly destroy them.

Thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor show mercy unto them; neither shalt thou make marriages with them: thy daughter thou shalt not give unto his son, nor his daughter shalt thou take unto thy son. For he will turn away thy son from following Me, that they may serve other gods; so will the anger of the LORD be kindled against you, and He will destroy thee quickly.

But thus shall ye deal with them: ye shall break down their altars, and dash in pieces their pillars, and hew down their Asherim, and burn their graven images with fire. For thou art a holy people unto the LORD thy God: the LORD thy God hath chosen thee to be His own treasure, out of all peoples that are upon the face of the earth.

Deuteronomy 7:1-6

Did you catch the threat? Not only were the Children of Israel commanded to practice what nowadays is called "ethnic cleansing", but they were told explicitly that if they failed to obey this command, then "the anger of the LORD" would be kindled against them, and He would destroy them quickly!

Why did the LORD order this holy war? Was it because the Children of Israel were "good", and the other nations "bad"? Not exactly:

Speak not thou in thy heart, after that the LORD thy God hath thrust them out from before thee, saying: 'For my righteousness the LORD hath brought me in to possess this land'; whereas for the wickedness of these nations the LORD doth drive them out from before thee.

Not for thy righteousness, or for the uprightness of thy heart, dost thou go in to possess their land; but for the wickedness of these nations the LORD thy God doth drive them out from before thee, and that He may establish the word which the LORD swore unto thy fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob.

Know therefore that it is not for thy righteousness that the LORD thy God giveth thee this good land to possess it; for thou are a stiffnecked people.

Deuteronomy 9:4-6

The threat of heavenly reprisal for failure to drive out the inhabitants of the land was given very explicitly in the Book of Numbers:

"Speak unto the Children of Israel, and say unto them: When ye pass over the Jordan into the land of Canaan, then ye shall drive out all the inhabitants of the land from before you, and destroy all their figured stones, and destroy all their molten images, and demolish all their high places. And ye shall drive out the inhabitants of the land, and dwell therein...

...But if ye will not drive out the inhabitants of the land from before you, then shall those that ye let remain of them be as thorns in your eyes, and as pricks in your sides, and they shall harass you in the land wherein ye dwell.

And it shall come to pass, that as I thought to do unto them, so will I do unto you."

Numbers 33:51-56

What were the Israelites instructed to do with the enemies in this Holy War? In Deuteronomy, Chapter 20, we learn this concerning the fate of the enemy cities against whom Israel would war:

  1. If a city surrendered, all the people were to be made "tributary", to serve Israel.
  2. If the city chose to fight, it was to be besieged until it surrendered.

It was presumed, in the giving of the second instruction, that the city would eventually surrender. The subsequent disposition was to be determined by its location. It the city was far away, all the males were to be killed. The women, children, cattle and wealth, however, were to be taken as spoil.

If, however, the city was within the precincts of the Holy Land, then the instructions were downright chilling:

Howbeit of the cities of these peoples, that the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance, THOU SHALT SAVE ALIVE NOTHING THAT BREATHETH, but thou shalt utterly destroy them: the Hittite, and the Amorite, the Canaanite, and the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite; as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee; that they teach you not to do after all their abominations, which they have done unto their gods, and so ye sin against the LORD your God.

Deuteronomy 20:16-18

Men, women, and children were to be destroyed. Even animals were not to be spared. How seriously were these commands taken? Since the Holy Wars of Israel went on for many years, the subject was raised repeatedly throughout the Old Testament, and the seriousness of it was amply illustrated therein.

One good example may be found in I Samuel chapter 15. There we learn that Saul, the first King of Israel, lost the support of the High Priest Samuel, and eventually the throne itself, simply because he took sheep and cattle as spoil in a Holy War with the Amalekites.

In the Book of Joshua, Moses' successor, we find an even more extraordinary example. Therein is described the bloody conclusion of the famous "Battle Of Jericho" (Joshua, chapters 7 & 8). God commanded this to be a major Holy War. Every man, woman, child, and animal was ordered killed (with the exception of the prostitute Rahab, who had become a spy for Israel). The city itself was to be totally burned to the ground. No spoil was to be saved, except that any gold and silver found was to be given over to the Tabernacle of the LORD. But an Israeli man named Achan had an opportunity to seize a few bars of Jericho's gold and silver for himself. When he was discovered, Joshua ordered him stoned, along with his wife, his children, his animals, and all his worldly possessions. Then their dead bodies were burned, along with the expropriated gold and silver. How serious was Joshua about Holy War? Serious enough to burn gold and silver!


"Jihad" explained from a modern perspective


How can we make sense of this sort of violence now, in a world obsessed with the twin concepts of peace and racial/ethnic equality?

We can. But we must make an effort to do so, and we must not be presumptuous about our own "righteousness".

This discussion must, by necessity, be limited to a western perspective. Here in the west, all major religions purport to be the sole legitimate heirs of the Revelation on Mount Sinai, i.e., the Ten Commandments and the Law of Moses. Jews claim to be so through Torah, Christians through the New Covenant, and Muslims through Qur'an. Therefore, it can be forcefully argued that if not for the Revelation on Sinai, none of our ideas about "peace" or "racial/ethnic equality" would even exist.

I would so argue.

This means that before the Revelation on Sinai, the sort of violence which characterized "jihad", or "holy war", was routine. I shouldn't have to tell you that. You've seen enough epic movies with "casts of thousands" to know that the ancient world was characterized by war, murder, racial and ethnic exterminations, expropriation of goods and lands, and by a general mentality of duplicitousness and treachery. No one thought there was anything wrong with it—just as long as they won the damned war.

Whether the Law of Moses was the first morally correct law or not is a point which many would love to argue, but it matters not whether it was first. It stuck, and the others didn't. There's nothing left to argue.

It was the Law of Moses, and its Christian and Muslim ramifications, which became the foundation of all secular law, and which led to a world in which the idea of "peace on earth, and goodwill to men" became even thinkable.

If you consider "peace on earth, and goodwill to men" to be desirable, then you are implicitly endorsing the Holy Wars of ancient Israel, since, if not for them, you would still be a member of a warring nation doing its best to murder its neighbors, rape their wives, enslave their children, and steal their property.

(Even with religion, mankind still does these things. At least now, however, we cannot claim innocence when caught).

Therefore, the first thing you must do, if you wish to logically comprehend the meaning of "jihad" in the modern world, is to recognize that the original Holy Wars of Israel had to be fought, or you would not be of sufficient moral stature now to question them from your "modern" self-righteous perspective.

And what was the stated object of the Holy Wars of ancient Israel? First and foremost, the object was the absolute destruction of idolatry. The bowing down to, and worshipping of idols was the primary activity which Holy War sought to root out.

Yeshua (Jesus) said "they that be whole need not a doctor, but they that are sick" (Matthew 9:12). If you don't believe in God or Enlightenment, I'm going to diagnose you as being "sick", and I propose to be a physician to you. Since you can't, or won't, believe in God, I'm now going to explain "jihad" ("holy war") to you in worldly terms.

The historical significance of the Law of Moses rests wholly upon the belief that it came directly from God. If God was indeed the force behind it, then Fear of Him was the basis of the enforcement of it. It follows that in the absence of the Fear of God, none of the Law was in any way enforceable except through violence; either legally-sanctioned violence, or old-fashioned brute force.

But in the long run, violence—in the absence of faith—does not work. There's an old saying, "you can't legislate morality". Either the Law comes from God, or, in the final analysis, it's essentially unenforceable.

Therefore, the obsessive drive of many to promote worship of the One God may be likened to the keel of a boat, working in the background to provide direction in the world of otherwise continuously-drifting secular law. Take away God, and all that remains is the power of public opinion, often referred to as "mob-rule democracy". As Socrates pointed out in The Republic, the power of mob-rule democracy eventually destroys a nation, as a succession of individuals and groups seize power, each in turn attempting to subvert all which came before, in favor of their own pre-conceived, ignorant notions.

The second great Law of religion, after the commandment to worship the One God, is the "Golden Rule", recognized throughout the world, and throughout history, as being the primary rule of human behavior upon which all else is based. Hillel, the greatest of the ancient Israeli Torah commentators, said of the Golden Rule that it was, in effect, a one-line summary of the entire Torah; the rest being merely "commentary". Likewise, Yeshua (Jesus) said, in the Sermon on the Mount, "all things whatsoever ye would that men do unto you, do them even so to others, for this is the Law and the Prophets".

The Old Testament has a commandment which is considered to be a corollary, or re-statement of the Golden Rule: "Love your neighbor as yourself".

Before the Revelation on Sinai, no nation taught anyone to "love their neighbor". On the contrary, the Old Law was "kill your neighbor and steal his money".

Are you still sorry that the ancient Israelites carried out a series of Holy Wars? Would it be better for you if that had never happened, and if today the world remained a collection of petty nations, each openly proclaiming to have the sole right to destroy all the others?

There are many, many other aspects of the Law of Moses which form a basis for any moral society. These include:

  1. The prohibition against "sacrificing" children to the gods.
  2. The prohibition against all other 1st-degree murder.
  3. The prohibition against stealing.
  4. The prohibition against adultery and other forms of troublesome sex.
  5. The prohibition against failing to help the needy.
  6. The prohibition against interest on loans to one's fellow citizens.
  7. The prohibition against failing to provide for one's family.

Jews perceive there to be 613 Laws in the Bible; we shall not list them all.

It was the Holy Wars of Moses which established that there can be a world without Holy Wars. Collectively, therefore, they were the original "War To End All Wars". The trouble is, the War is not over.


"Jihad". What does it mean today?


To understand the meaning of "holy war"— i.e., "jihad"—in the modern world, all that is necessary is to keep clearly in mind what the original purpose was, since it's the same now.

The primary purpose of holy war was—and is—to rid the land of idolatry. Some might opine that this has already been accomplished. Have you seen anyone falling on his face in front of a statue lately? I didn't think so.

In the Bible, however, the activity we now call "idolatry" is more broadly defined, consisting of absolutely any form of worship other than worship of God. This includes the worship of trees, animals and celestial objects.

Don't think for a moment, therefore, that there aren't people in the world today who worship the forbidden things. It's hardly a secret that there are worshippers of the Sun, the Moon, "Mother Earth", nature in general, and Satan himself. They rarely practice their abominations in plain public view, although they often belong to organizations which promote themselves openly. It is a shortcoming of the legal doctrine of "freedom of speech" that these practices cannot be removed by process of civil law.

In Israel, there is, in principle, an ongoing biblical prohibition against idolatry. If any man, woman or child in Israel were to fall before a statue and worship it, that person should be liable for the death penalty.

Of course, modern Israeli law has no provision for capital punishment for idolatry. That is why the modern nation of Israel is fighting for its life. It isn't what it purports to be.

If it is not proper to regard idolatry as a capital offense—punishable by death—in Israel today, then why was it a capital offense in ancient Israel? Conversely, if it was improper to regard idolatry as a capital offense, even in ancient Israel, then how can the Law of Moses have come from God? No god would promulgate a law which was "improper".

And if none of the Laws taught by Moses actually came from God, then what right do Jews have to inhabit Israel today, seeing that they have displaced other peoples who lived there before 1948? Is it merely that "might makes right", and that they won a war?

There's another war going on now. The Jews may lose. If so, then will "might make right" in that war also?

Sooner or later every right-thinking person begins to understand that unless the Revelation on Sinai is accepted as having come from God, then there never really was any true Jewish religion at all. Or, by logical extension, any Christian or Muslim religion. If that's true, then all we've ever really had has been chaos, which is Hell, because when every man does what's right in his own eyes, the world is destroyed.

The price for believing in God is that His Laws must be obeyed. One of these laws is that idolaters in Israel must be totally, ruthlessly destroyed. This law is therefore not dated. It is current—whether the government chooses to enforce it or not.

Outside of Israel, the Law specifies that idolaters must be dealt with as effectively as possible, but the rule of total extermination remains legally binding within Israel, right up to the present minute—if, that is, Israel is to be accepted as being the living embodiment and manifestation of the Torah, which it purports to be.

Of course, no one in this day and age falls on his face before an idol. But there is another, more insidious form of idolatry which is rampant in the world. If we define "religion" as being...

{That which has the highest priority, overriding all else in importance}

... then there's the matter of money. In this world, "money talks". The majority of human beings in the world today "take care of the money" before anything else, and before everything else.

"Everything else" includes God.

When Moses came down from the Mount with the Ten Commandments, he found the Children of Israel groveling before a statue of a calf. The calf was, of course, a golden calf. And so it's been ever since—the highest priority has always been gold, i.e., money. And that ordering of priorities, with gold at the top, has always been the established order both within and without Israel.

So idolatry, in the form of worship of nature, or of gold, or of anything else under the sun except God, is, in actuality, rampant in the world today. Therefore, there is going to be "jihad".

But, in a world in which everyone publicly shuns idols, and in which all churches claim to be the "one true religion of God", how can idolaters be identified? In other words, "Who is the enemy?".


Qur'anic definition of "the enemy"


At the time these words are being written, the acts of self-proclaimed "Muslim terrorists" are dominating the news.

If you believe everything you read in the papers, then you will live in ignorance for the rest of your life. The news media all report exactly what the so-called "Muslim terrorists" say, word-for-word. They do so because they hate all religion, and have a deep longing to live in a world of atheistic corruption. No, it's not because they like corruption. It's because they are currently benefiting from it, and they think their reign will never end.

It has been widely reported, by the news media, that Muslim terrorists the world over are involved in some sort of a "holy war", or "jihad", against, well, just about everybody. The acts of terror are real, but is this really a "holy war"?

We have seen that the concept of "holy war" did not arise in the Qur'an at all. It arose in the Old Testament. It surely did not end in the New Testament. There Yeshua (Jesus) said:

"Think not that I have come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword".

(Matthew 10:34).

Neither the Old Testament Book of Daniel, nor its New Testament sequel, the book of Revelation, contain any prophecies of "love and peace" in our immediate futures.

So if, in mankind's further revelation, the Qur'an, we read of "holy war", think not that Muhammad made it up in his own mind. Our God did indeed command war against idolatry in all forms.

Therefore, all that remains to understand modern Islamic "fundamentalism" is to read what the Qur'an says about who the idolaters are, and where they are to be found.

All right. Who are the idolaters? Are they "the Jews"? Are they "the Christians"?

Here's what Muhammad actually said about Jews and Christians:

Those who believe in the Qur’an,

And those who are Jews,

And the Christians ...

Any who believe in Allah and the Last Day,

And work righteousness,

Shall have their reward with their Lord;

On them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

Qur’an 2:62

What's this? "Reward"? "No fear"? What sort of "holy war" is this? It sounds more like a blessing!

The above quotation from the Qur’an was neither a mistake nor a casual remark. Just to make sure that the point got across, the Prophet repeated the passage, almost verbatim, in a later Chapter (5:69).

Obviously, there is something dreadfully wrong with the way Islam is depicted on television.

Islam has never failed to acknowledge the prophets of the Jewish and Christian religions, but, if its television spokespeople are to be believed, all those prophets pale in comparison with Muhammad, who—they say—was the "greatest" of all of them. But is this what he said? You decide. Here's what the Qur'an says about who the "greatest" prophet is:

We believe in Allah, and the revelation given to us, and to Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to Moses and Jesus, and that given to all Prophets from their Lord: We make no difference between one and another of them...

Qur'an 2:136

This message is repeated so many times in the Qur’an that it's impossible to deny the full implication of it. Muhammad certainly did not regard himself as the "greatest" of the prophets, because he did not acknowledge that such a thing existed.

Doesn't reading and following the Qur'an make a Muslim "morally superior" to Jews and Christians, and mustn't these older religions therefore be ruthlessly suppressed? This is a slightly more subtle point. In Muhammad's day, Jews and Christians frequently supported the war of resistance against the rising power of Islam. Since, as we have already seen, the Prophet had nothing but respect for the Jewish and Christian religions, he regarded the people involved in this resistance as "Jews" and "Christians" in name only. But he referred to them as "hypocrites". The formal term for Jewish and Christian hypocrites was “People of the Book”, the "Book" being, of course, the Bible.

It is known that Muhammad often lamented the fact that his people, the Arabs, did not have a "Book" of their own, like the Torah or the New Testament. That notwithstanding, he believed that those Books, by themselves, were not sufficient to save his people from their sins, and he constantly criticized any who purported themselves to be "perfected" simply by virtue of the fact that their religion had a Bible (a "Book"). Here is a passage which illustrates Muhammad's point of view:

...That the People of the Book may know that they have no power whatever over the Grace of Allah, that His Grace is entirely in His Hand, to bestow it on whomsoever He wills.

Qur’an 57:29

If there is to be "peace on earth", both Muslims and non-Muslims must keep one subtle point firmly in mind at all times. Since the death of Muhammad, at which time his sayings were quickly compiled as the Qur’an, the Muslims themselves have had a "Book" also! Thus, they are now also "People of the Book", and have been for 1400 years. Therefore, the above admonition of the Prophet Muhammad also applies to them, and they should bear in mind that the mere reading of praises for the names of Allah and his Prophet Muhammad will not, by themselves, force the hand of Allah to bestow grace upon them.

We are now ready to consider the Qur'anic meaning of the word "jihad". Although most readers cannot read Arabic, we shall include the Arabic words we need to consider to learn the truth, alongside their English transliterations and translations.


The word "jihad"


I am well-aware that most readers of this book cannot read Arabic. That's all right. I'm still going to show you some Arabic words, along with English transliterations and translations. Hang in there—what you're about to learn is important.

The word "jihad" is derived from the Arabic verb...

... pronounced "ja-ha-da" in English. Ja-ha-da means "to strive, to fight, to struggle, to battle, to wage holy war or jihad".

The word "ja-ha-da" is used interchangeably in the Qur'an with the word...

... pronounced "ka-ta-la". It means "to fight, combat, battle against".

If one wishes to be a follower of the Prophet Muhammad, who exactly is it whom one will be "battling against"?

If we seek the answer to this question in the Qur'an, we find that the obligation to fight against unbelief is an oft-recurring theme throughout the Book. Nevertheless, the fine nuances of the commandment for "jihad" are most elaborately developed in Surah (i.e., chapter) 9, usually entitled "The Repentance" in English translations. There we find a comprehensive listing of the "enemies" against whom "jihad" is to be waged. They are, in order of their appearances,

I know you can't read Arabic. These words, in English transliteration and definition, are:


Al moosh-ree-kee-na

"the polytheists" (or "idolaters", or "pagans").


Al ka-fee-roo-na

"the unbelievers".


Al moo-na-fee-koo-na

"the hypocrites".


This, then, is the Muslim "enemies list". Who are the "polytheists"? The "unbelievers"? The "hypocrites"?


The "enemy" identified

1. Polytheists


"Polytheist" means the same thing today that it did in Moses' day. Polytheism is almost gone from the world, at least insofar as open worship is concerned. True; enemies of Christianity love to accuse Christians of "polytheism" because of the doctrine of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost, but it is clear that Christians regard these as different manifestations of the One God.

Similarly, Hindus, through the millennia, have maintained their pantheon of gods and goddesses, but it has been explicitly understood, since the days of the Bhagavad Gita, that these are all different manifestations of the One God, whom they know by the name Krishna.

We have seen that the ban on polytheism was commanded by Moses, and that the commandment is still binding today; binding upon believers, at least.

If the commandment is still binding today, then it was surely still binding in the days of Muhammad. Therefore the Quranic ban on polytheism was not original with Muhammad, but was simply a continuation of a Commandment originally given by God to Moses.


2. Unbelievers


The word "unbelievers", or the phrase "those who do not believe", are found innumerable times in the Qur’an. What's an "unbeliever"? Simply a person who does not believe in Allah and His Prophet.

This clearly includes "polytheists" and "idolaters", and therefore, to a large extent, "polytheist" and "unbeliever" mean the same thing. But what about Jews and Christians? They are, by Islam's own definition, believers in Allah, but they may not believe in His Prophet. Does that make them "unbelievers"?

Certainly not. We have seen already that believing Jews and Christians are specifically excluded from the "enemies" list, since, by the repeated word of the Prophet himself, believing Jews and Christians...

Shall have their reward with their Lord;

On them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

Qur’an 2:62 (and elsewhere)

Should they, upon whom God commanded that there should be "no fear", then be terrorized and murdered in the name of the same God? I think not.

All right. What about non-believing Jews and Christians?


3. Hypocrites


We now come to the crux of the matter. Just what exactly is a “Jew”, or a “Christian”, or, for that matter, a “Muslim”? Is it sufficient to merely possess a certificate showing that one's dues have been paid-up at the temple?

Very few would accept such a thin definition. But if an exact, scientifically-precise definition of any religion is sought, it recedes, like a mirage in the heat. It simply cannot be pinned down.

It is almost universally accepted that, buried within the masses of followers of any religion, there lie people—probably many people—who don't believe, and who "hang on" because of real or imagined material benefit of some sort.

There is nothing new about this. When the Children of Israel were led up out of Egypt, they were accompanied by a "mixed multitude" (Exodus12:38). This is understood as having been a large mass of non-believers who took it upon themselves to come along, either because they hated or feared the Egyptians, or because they believed that there was some sort of material benefit in hanging onto the Jews.

The "mixed multitude" was trouble. They were cited as having been the cause of at least one rebellion against Moses (Numbers 11:4), and they undoubtedly contributed greatly to all the unrest which accompanied Israel on it journey of 40 years through the wilderness. They were the "hypocrites" of the Exodus, although many Israelites undoubtedly shared in their unbelief.

In the New Testament, the concept of a "hypocrite" among the believers, like a weed in the garden, was more highly developed. Yeshua (Jesus) used the word "hypocrite", as a form of denunciation, 15 times in the Gospel of Matthew alone.

Therefore, when Muhammad railed against the "hypocrites", he was, once again, speaking firmly in the Judeo-Christian tradition, and promulgating no new doctrine.

How did Muhammad determine what lay in the minds of Jews and Christians, to know which ones "really" believed, and which ones were actually "hypocrites"?

He didn't. His definition of "hypocrite" was based not on what a man said, but what the man actually did. Those who fought against Islam and its Prophet were deemed the enemy, and Muslims were instructed to neutralize them by any and every means necessary. Killing was most assuredly not excluded from the methods to be employed. However...starting the fight was prohibited (Qur'an 2:190).

There is no doubt that the directive of the Qur'an was to leave unmolested those who, while refusing to follow Islam and its Prophet, nevertheless chose to coexist peacefully with the new order.

Did Muhammad have the "right" to decide who was, and who wasn't a "hypocrite"? If the LORD really did appear to him, then he had the right, for then anyone who was against him was against God. As far as the record shows, all the things he stood firmly against, such as idol worship, drunkenness, and sexual immorality, were also forbidden by Judaism and Christianity. So what was it that drove certain people to physically oppose him? It could only have been—he reasoned—that they were not sincere Jews and Christians, but "hypocrites".

On September 11, 2001, Arab terrorists, purportedly Muslim, launched a suicide air strike against a civilian target, the twin towers of the World Trade Center in New York. Were the 2,000-3,000 people slain in this attack among those known to be actively fighting against Islam or its Prophet? The idea is ludicrous.

Could there have been "hypocrites" among the thousands slain; people who were openly or secretly opposing the teachings of the Prophet? Certainly. Among thousands of people, one is likely to find examples of anything.

But is it lawful, under the Qur'an, to kill a mass of people in order to eliminate a few guilty parties?

You know the answer to that without being told. Of course the answer is "no". But where in the Qur'an may we find the Word of God on this matter?


Indiscriminate killing prohibited


In the 48th Surah of the Qur'an, entitled "The Victory", we find the Word of God on this matter. This Surah was revealed to Muhammad during his return from the Holy City of Mecca in the sixth year of his reign at Medina. Mecca, at that time, was still in the hands of hostile pagans. Muhammad and 1400 followers had attempted to make the Pilgrimage to Mecca over the objections of the rulers of that city. When the Prophet and his forces reached the outskirts of the city, there were some hostile encounters, which led the Muslims to take an oath, at a place called Al-Hudaybiyah, to either all stand or all fall together in battle. However, as things developed, there was no battle, but rather a 10-year peace treaty.

There was much disappointment among some of the Muslims about this treaty, since it seemed to give too much to the enemy, and nothing to them. At this point, Muhammad received a revelation from Allah, saying that He Himself had held them back from fighting. The reason? Because there were a number of sincere Muslims living in Mecca, in addition to the idolaters, and if war had broken out, the forces of Muhammad would have inadvertently killed Muslims along with idolaters, and thereby incurred guilt. This revelation from Allah stated further that if the Muslims and idolaters of the City of Mecca could have been separated, then the Unbelievers surely would have been punished by Him with a grievous punishment (Qur'an 48:25).

The God Who spoke thusly may well have been a God of war, but He was certainly not a God of indiscriminate killing; the sort which results when a terrorist blows up himself along with numerous other people he does not know.


Must Islam "prevail"?


You can perhaps see that the Qur'an, so far as we have looked into it, does not call for "jihad" the way the news media imply. In effect, the Qur'an simple re-states, from an Arabian perspective, the Law of Moses, which demands absolute suppression of idolatry.

However, there is a Quranic verse which, if taken out of context, seems to suggest that there is indeed a Divine Commandment to wage war against all non-Muslim religions until they are destroyed. This verse occurs in the 9th Surah (Qur'an 9:33). It is so important that it is repeated, almost verbatim, in two subsequent chapters (48:28, 61:9). Clearly, we'd better take a look at this verse. One very popular English translation of the Qur'an renders this verse:

It is He [i.e., Allah] Who has sent His Messenger with guidance and the religion of truth, to proclaim it over all religion, even though the pagans may hate it.

That phrase, "to proclaim it over all religion", is a problem. It seems to suggest that Islam must, in some way, overwhelm everything else. This could mean jihad. But does it? Let's see how other translators render the phrase. In another version of the Qur'an, the same passage states that Allah will...

...cause it [i.e., Islam] to prevail over all religion....

... which is even more threatening. That means war, because the other religions are not just going to quit without a fight. A third Qur'an version states that Allah has sent His Messenger—with the religion of truth— make it superior to other systems of belief...

This is a little less threatening, but not entirely so. If the followers of one religion are superior to followers of all others, then that can be seized upon as an excuse to kill the others.

If there is really a Divine Commandment to cause Islam to prevail over all else, then bloodshed cannot be averted. So, since lives are at stake, we are going to have to read this verse in Arabic. I know you can't read Arabic, but try to hold on, because I'm going to show you what the Qur'an really says:

These are the four Arabic words which are translated "to cause it (i.e., Islam) to prevail over all religion". They are transliterated as follows:

Lee-yooz-hee-ra-hoo     a-la     dee-nee     kool-leeh

The first 2 of these words, "lee-yooz-hee-ra-hoo a-la", are the words whose meanings we must determine. The last 2 words, "dee-nee kool-leeh" are non-controvesial, meaning "all religion". What is to be done to "all religion"? Destroy it?

The answer lies in the first two words. The first, "lee-yooz-hee-ra-hoo", is in the passive subjunctive tense (please keep this in mind; the verb tense here is of critical importance). It is derived from the Arabic verb "za-ha-ra":

...which, according to the Al-Mawrid dictionary, means: "To appear, come out, come to light, show, emerge, arise, manifest itself, reveal itself; to be or become apparent, visible, manifest, evident, clear, plain, known (etc.)".

This word is quite analogous to the Hebrew word "za-har", which means "to be enlightened, taught". Thus, according to the dictionary definitions, the Arabic phrase usually translated


" cause it [i.e., Islam] to prevail over all religion..."


...would be more accurately translated


" cause it [i.e., Islam] to become known to all religion..."


This, then, is not a call to war; but rather a call to education.

Ah, but it's not so simple. You see, there are idioms in Arabic, just as in every other language. In our phrase...


Lee-yooz-hee-ra-hoo     a-la     dee-nee     kool-leeh


... the conjugated verb za-ha-ra is followed by the word a-la. This combination is a distinct Arabic idiom. In Arabic, with the pronoun and adverb stripped from the verb, it is spelled...

(za-ha-ra   a-la)


...which has two very different meanings in the Al-Mawrid dictionary:


  1. Za-ha-ra   ala: To get the better of, overcome, overwhelm, overpower, conquer, vanquish.

  2. Za-ha-ra   ala: To know (of); to be or become aware of, acquainted with; to learn (about), come to know (about).


Can we figure out which is the correct one? You be the judge. As mentioned above, the verb za-ha-ra, in the form in which it appears in the Qur'an, is in the passive subjunctive tense. This means that the verb “to overcome” becomes “to be overcome”, and the verb “to know” becomes “to cause to be known”. Here are the two possible literal interpretations of Qur'an 9:33, based upon the ordinary principles of Arabic grammar:


  1. It is He [i.e., Allah] Who has sent His Messenger with guidance and the religion of truth, to have it be overcome (overwhelmed, overpowered, etc.) by all other religion...

  2. It is He [i.e., Allah] Who has sent His Messenger with guidance and the religion of truth, to cause all other religions to know about it...


    No matter which one you select, there's no commandment here for "jihad". Many hate-filled Jews and Christians would undoubtedly prefer (1), which would render Islam a laughing-stock in the eyes of the world. Therefore, the correct interpretation is, of course, (2), namely that the Messenger was sent to cause Allah's Religion to be known to all others.

    There is therefore no "jihad", insofar as the word is used by our lying press to describe the daily murders in the Middle East. Islam only commands death to idolaters, and the commandment was originally pronounced by Moses. Any idolater deserving to die under Islamic Law also deserves to die under Jewish Law. By a process of logical argument which I shall not bore you with, such also deserve death under Christian Law, even though the ranks of Christianity include many who have forgotten that Yeshua (Jesus) said:

"Think not that I have come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword".

(Matthew 10:34)

If Muhammad found there to be many among the Jews and Christians who were hypocrites, he still did not condemn anyone for being a "Jew" or a "Christian", but only for being a hypocrite, a person bent on mischief, hoping to be excused by claiming "membership" in a religious organization allegedly exempt from all judgment.

There is no religious organization which will grant any man or woman exemption from judgment. And that most assuredly includes Islam, history's most recent addition to the group called, in the Qur'an, "People Of The Book".