Thursday, 9 September 2010

Don't burn Qur'ans, read Bibles

  If you haven't seen in the news, the latest extremist Christian from America, Terry Jones of Dove World Outreach Centre in Gainesville, Florida, plans to hold an 'International Burn a Koran Day'.  First of all, let me say that the burning of Qur'ans is a shocking thing to do and he should quit whilst he is ahead (if you can call it ahead...).  If you put any inch of research into what Muslims think of their holy book then it is clear that intentional damage of Qur'ans is deeply offensive to them and to purposefully offend someone is really not on.

  However, look at this man's motives and he isn't such an evil doer as it may seem.  The motives behind the initiative are solid: Jones sees Islam as a danger to the salvation of those who follow it and wants to warn people about what he believes.  He says that he is acting out of love, acting with the aim to 'bring people to the knowledge of the truth'.  Think about it: if you thought that someone was doing something that was severely detrimental to their health, would you not try to warn them about it?  Again, I seriously condemn the actions he is taking to do this but it's worth a thought, I think he just doesn't quite realise what offense he is causing.

  The thing he should be doing, however, is not warning against the loss of salvation by clumsily upsetting millions, but teaching how to gain salvation.  Jesus Christ said that he was the one and only way to salvation after death, the one way to get to the Father in heaven (John 14:6) and to receive eternal life (John 4:13-14).  The problems with those that Jones is protesting against is not that they are Muslim or that they follow the Qur'an but that they don't know Jesus and the amazing offer he gives.

  I agree it is important to know about all different faiths, cultures and backgrounds, typified by the reply initiative, 'International Read a Koran Day', to avoid offensive statements and know on what grounds to speak to people.  However, the most important thing to do, I would say, is to read the Bible, get to know who Jesus was, and is, and what he claimed.  

Let's also not retaliate against this act, as many are doing by burning American flags (also offensive) and other such things.  Many are saying that this may cause rising tensions within Muslim communities and will heighten to danger to US troops in the Middle East and elsewhere.  Let us not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good (Romans 12:21).