Burning a Koran

We live in a confusing world in some respects. We want the freedom of speech, but when speech offends or incites negative reactions many want regulation. I have to wonder if incitement to hatred can truly be held responsible for a crime or simply the one incited?

We also want freedom of religion, but some religions bring oppression and ultimately force out all others. Should freedom of religion be completely unchecked?

As the world continues in a tumult, because of the pastor in Florida who planned on burning a copy of the Koran, I want to make some of my feelings clear on the matter.

I hold no ill-will toward Muslims. The truth of the matter is that the vast majority of Muslims in the UK and USA, and probably most other Western nations, are peaceful. They would no sooner behead you as an infidel than would the Southern Baptist Convention in the USA mount a 21 century crusade to force converts from the Middle East at the tip of a sword.

However, another fact is this, in many Islamic nations Christianity, along with other faiths, is either illegal, oppressed or suppressed.

My heart’s desire for all Muslims, and every individual, is that they might come to Christ for salvation.

So when I make remarks on Twitter of Facebook regarding Islam do not take that as some unyielding hatred. My concern is that if the strain of Islam that permeates places like Iran and Saudi Arabia is allowed to flourish in my country, then in generations to come what kind of a life will my children or grandchildren have?

My desire is to live in a free country. One in which I can give someone the Gospel, politely, and leave it with them. If they want to embrace Christ then I want them to be able to do that without fear of reprisals or so-called honour-killings. By the same token that means others can speak to me of their beliefs, that’s fine.

The problem comes when people are forced to be a certain religion and all free choice is removed. That is the style of Islam prevalent in Iran and the type which many would like to see implemented in our countries.

Another issue is the continual surrender to radicals. This pastor in Florida I believe was wrong to make plans to burn the Koran, however, more wrong is the response of many Muslims who rioted and made death threats. When ground is surrendered in this way it is seldom regained without great cost. There is no such thing as a religious vacuum. Contrary to the beliefs of liberals and modernists humanity can never be completely without religion. Either we embrace a particular faith system or we are reduced to superstition. As well, many who disavow religion use politics and philosophical positions in the same way.

I know this has been something of a rant but what I want to make clear is this. My position is not political, I do not hate Muslims. My position is philosophical, ideological, based upon the Bible and my desire is to see Muslims and all people forgiven and putting their trust in Christ.

One last point, the idea that Islam is an inherently violent religion is not something created by 21 century war mongers. before the turn of the last century, 153 years ago, C.H. Spurgeon, a Baptist preacher in London said, “Mohammedans’ religion might be sustained by scimitars, but Christians’ religion must be maintained by love.” There is a battle for the truth going on, ultimately a battle between right and wrong. We must use discernment in these days of confusion.

Every believer has the responsibility to live according to the holiness and love of God, to reach out to ALL, Muslim, Buddhist or Pagan, and share the Good News of Jesus Christ.

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