New Vent: Michelle interviews Robert Spencer about Religion of Peace: Why Christianity is and Islam Isn’t

posted at 8:50 am on August 13, 2007 by Allahpundit

Robert Spencer’s 7th book, Religion of Peace: Why Christianity is and Islam Isn’t, is released today. Michelle talks with Robert about why he wrote the book and more.

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Religion of Peace: Why Christianity is and Islam Isn’t

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The ultimate reason why Christianity is a religion of peace is not because of the peace between Christians and other unbelievers but because of the peace offered by God to man through the finished work of Christ.

shick on August 13, 2007 at 9:02 AM

Jews faced centuries of persecution at the hands of our Christian neighbors. But today, even though we may disagree on a number of political issues, Evangelical Christians are our best friends when it comes to supporting Israel and combating the spread of militant Islam.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 9:09 AM

The ultimate reason why Christianity is a religion of peace is not because of the peace between Christians and other unbelievers but because of the peace offered by God to man through the finished work of Christ.

shick on August 13, 2007 at 9:02 AM

So true, but it must be said that the peace offered to man by God is reflected in the peace that we are commanded to live in with each other. Put another way, worldly Christian peace is a product of Christian theology, just as jihad is a product of islamist theology.

gryphon202 on August 13, 2007 at 9:10 AM

Jews faced centuries of persecution at the hands of our Christian neighbors. But today, even though we may disagree on a number of political issues, Evangelical Christians are our best friends when it comes to supporting Israel and combating the spread of militant Islam.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 9:09 AM

ever wonder why that is?

zane on August 13, 2007 at 9:15 AM

Well Done!

hinduconservative on August 13, 2007 at 9:20 AM

ever wonder why that is?

I did — until I read this book.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 9:28 AM

YAY VENT!

ThackerAgency on August 13, 2007 at 9:29 AM

Fantastic interview!

Where can we buy signed copies?

Keep speaking out Robert.

We all need to do our part to spread the word.

TheBigOldDog on August 13, 2007 at 9:52 AM

worldly Christian peace is a product of Christian theology, just as jihad is a product of islamist theology.

Read the whole New Testament and you won’t find any justification for the Crusades, the witch-hunts and the Inquisition. Westerners deviated from Biblical Christianity when our ancestors did these things. On the other hand, when muslims engage in jihad, they are not deviating from their religion, but are acting according to it.

Bigfoot on August 13, 2007 at 9:53 AM

Read the whole New Testament and you won’t find any justification for the Crusades, the witch-hunts and the Inquisition. Westerners deviated from Biblical Christianity when our ancestors did these things. On the other hand, when muslims engage in jihad, they are not deviating from their religion, but are acting according to it.

thats easy to say now, i bet my last dollar that the inquisitors, crusaders, and witchfinder generals would have told you their actions where demanded by their religion and sanctioned by their god.

zane on August 13, 2007 at 9:55 AM

Rosie O’Donnell gets the first copy.

As someone said:

Christians are dangerous when they do not follow their religion, Muslims are dangerous when they do.

profitsbeard on August 13, 2007 at 10:02 AM

Zane,

Don’t be so quick to part from your money. Actually, the inquisitors, crusaders and whitchunters weren’t interested in obeying the written word. Rather they were inclined to follow their own wicked hearts.

shick on August 13, 2007 at 10:06 AM

zane on August 13, 2007 at 9:55 AM

How about trying to live in this century?

TheBigOldDog on August 13, 2007 at 10:06 AM

Zane,

Don’t be so quick to part from your money. Actually, the inquisitors, crusaders and whitchunters weren’t interested in obeying the written word. Rather they were inclined to follow their own wicked hearts.

shick on August 13, 2007 at 10:06 AM

and the orders of the vatican.

zane on August 13, 2007 at 10:09 AM

zane on August 13, 2007 at 9:55 AM

Boy, zane, your last dollar’s safe. *whew* But…ahem…that WASN’T the point! The point was what the Bible demands versus what the Qur’an demands. The difference is that anyone committing “Christian jihad” is acting outside Biblical prescription, whereas Muslim jihadis are not. Even in your statement about the [V]atican, its actions (such as crushing the Albigensian Heresy, partially for claims that it was possible to have a personal relationship with God, unmitigated be the Church) had to do with the temporal power of the Church and not the commands of the Bible.

eeyore on August 13, 2007 at 10:19 AM

zane on August 13, 2007 at 9:55 AM

We can’t even include the Crusades in this, as it was a response to 300 years of jihad by muslims in Jerusalem & other parts of the territory.

It may not be specifically sanctioned by the New Testament, but fighting oppression by muslims was vital to protect the Christians and Jews in the region.

That needs to be kept in mind…that and 350 years of the Inquisition killed fewer than 4 years of attacks today, or 500 years of Moghul rule.

Miss_Anthrope on August 13, 2007 at 10:21 AM

No one should bother questioning the stupidity of the crusades (and let’s not forget the Muslim armies were hardly interested in saving Jerusalem for shared use by all faiths), but that is NOT the issue here, as Spencer points out.

Radical Islam wants to impose by sword a form of government “perfected” by Muslims in the seventh century that imposes Islam by government decree, leaves women as little better than slaves and would put to death people who leave the faith, engage in homosexual acts or who criticize a prophet (who was after all, like all prophets, only human). And no other (apparently popular) interpretation of any major faith calls for its followers to kill and seek martyrdom,

The crusades are a red herring. Timothy McVie (sp?) is a red herring.

doufree on August 13, 2007 at 10:23 AM

You know what, I think I’ll buy this book, and get the PIG to Islam as well.

I hope the next interview Hot Air does is with Steven Emerson, or someone else from the Investigative Project, to discuss the Holy Land Fund case and CAIR.

mram on August 13, 2007 at 10:27 AM

zane on August 13, 2007 at 10:09 AM

This ‘zane’ might be the troublemaker from LGF with 4 or 5 pseudonyms most of which have been banned or asked to leave multiple blogs.

If not, I apologize.

If so, don’t feed it.

shooter on August 13, 2007 at 10:36 AM

I deeply admire Robert Spencer, but he is wrong in this clip. The origin of the moral equivalence card is not in the 1960′s moral leftism.

It’s far older and far more decent than is often admitted by most people who are aware of how dangerous simple-minded Christianity hating has become. (Christianity hating needs to become more complex for today’s secularists–a love/hate relationship that accepts Christianity’s role in how we become what we are.) The moral equivalence card comes out of the struggle for secularism in Europe that is older than the European discovery of America; the Investiture Controversy that lead to the Concordat of Worms in 1122 is one major example. That there is a First Amendment to the US Constitution show the success of the secularist in Western society.

Now, while at least some of us rejoice in the success of the secularists, the stories that secularists told weren’t always accurate. They matched the Church misrepresentation to misrepresentation. In particular, the secularist mocked the Crusades as a senseless war of aggression, rather than the belated defensive war that they in fact were. The secularists won the battle for how we Westerners conceive of the Crusades. This victory and similar ones combined with a lack of moral imagination on the behalf of secularist humanists and liberal “Christians” that anyone could take religion seriously without being a fool or a devil is what has to lead to the high appeal of the moral equivalence card.

There are two things we can do now. They are to engage in serious debate and to refuse to accept the idea that all religions say the same thing. The last shouldn’t be that hard for fundamentalist Christians, but they too fall prey to this trap. Here’s a personal anecdote. I was in conversation with a fanatic fundamentalist Christian and a Hindu. The Christian did not put up an objection when the Hindu asserted all religions say the same thing. I suppose it was the Christian’s effort to be reasonable, but the equivalence assertion is a dangerous way of trivializing a Christian’s argument for why Christianity is better than Hinduism in this case. Ultimately under all religions say the same thing ideology, a Christian is unable to explain why Christianity is a better religion than traditional Aztec beliefs. This is simultaneously anti-Christian and anti-intellectual. (My point is similar to what Pope Benedict was saying that got the muslims to do their usual rioting.)

As an atheist, I urge Christians to make their case, so we can understand them and other religions. Otherwise, we trivialize not just Christianity, but other religions. And religion is important. To overlook religion as most atheist, secular humanists and liberal “Christians” do is to misunderstand the world in a way dangerous given muslim aggression.

thuja on August 13, 2007 at 10:40 AM

What a guy! Thank you so much Mr. Spencer for allowing this interview. I could listen to you for hours.

Babs on August 13, 2007 at 10:52 AM

zane, since you bring up the Vatican, let me point out that my earlier post refers not to Christianity as practiced by the Vatican, or by any protestant or eastern orthodox authority, but to biblical Christianity. Indeed, it was the Vatican that called for the Crusades, carried out the Inquisition, and otherwise intermingled church and state. (Witchhunts, such as those of colonial Salem, I believe, were more of a Protestant phenomenon.) I’m not denying that these things were part of Christian history. I only allege that none of them has any basis in the New Testament.

Bigfoot on August 13, 2007 at 10:55 AM

Islam is 3023 percent less peaceful than Christianity.

TheSitRep on August 13, 2007 at 10:58 AM

zane, since you bring up the Vatican, let me point out that my earlier post refers not to Christianity as practiced by the Vatican, or by any protestant or eastern orthodox authority, but to biblical Christianity. Indeed, it was the Vatican that called for the Crusades, carried out the Inquisition, and otherwise intermingled church and state. (Witchhunts, such as those of colonial Salem, I believe, were more of a Protestant phenomenon.) I’m not denying that these things were part of Christian history. I only allege that none of them has any basis in the New Testament.

now you have made that clear, i do agree with you completely, what the Messiah taught and what the christians did where sometimes different. but what He taught was justice and love, this i think even muslims would agree with, most muslims i have asked about Christ, say the same.

zane on August 13, 2007 at 10:58 AM

Only here at Hot Air. Thanks Michelle and Robert. Get this guy on Fox too.

I have read Robert’s two books on Islam and I found them informative and deeply troubling. I’m looking forward to his new book.

Mojave Mark on August 13, 2007 at 10:59 AM

Great interview Michelle, thanks for your dedication.

Dersu on August 13, 2007 at 11:08 AM

Read the whole New Testament and you won’t find any justification for the Crusades, the witch-hunts and the Inquisition. Westerners deviated from Biblical Christianity when our ancestors did these things. On the other hand, when muslims engage in jihad, they are not deviating from their religion, but are acting according to it.

Bigfoot on August 13, 2007 at 9:53 AM

The whole thing in one shiny little nutshell.

Professor Blather on August 13, 2007 at 11:27 AM

I’m sorry to see that this thread immediately devolved into squabbling about whether or not Christianity is a religion of peace. One thing for sure, Islam is not and it seems to me that the take away point from the interview is that we must wise up about this and start resisting it.

student on August 13, 2007 at 11:27 AM

ever wonder why that is?

In the book I cited above, the author argues that those Christians who subscribed to Replacement Theology were much more likely to threaten and harm the Jews. When Christians accepted Dispensationalism, they were taught a positive view of the Jewish people, and they acted accordingly.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 11:30 AM

I’ve got my copy. I waited at the bookstore yesterday for the clerk to get the book from the stockroom and put it on the shelf. Well, encouraged actually.

Spencer is da man.

awake on August 13, 2007 at 11:38 AM

As an atheist, I urge Christians to make their case, so we can understand them and other religions.

thuja on August 13, 2007 at 10:40 AM

It is difficult to make a case that is understood by others. Christianity is based on the belief that Christ fulfilled the prophecy of the old testament of God’s covenant with mankind. Christ fulfilled all of the prophecies in the old testament.

Having said that, you have to wonder if Christ was who He said He was. Christ is a historical figure during a time in history. That is fairly undisputable. (Crucifixion was common, King Harrod ordered the killing of babies under 2 when He was born – yet He was spared, lots of historical interesting ‘coincidences’.) He was revered by many, and hated by some in the establishment. Yet He has not tomb. You would have thought His followers would have marked the grave of such an important figure. Where is He?

So you have to consider. . . what did Christ himself gain from doing what He did (die on the Cross). At any moment Christ could have disavowed what He was saying and He would have been let go. Pontius Pilate did not want to crucify Him (didn’t want to make a martyr – especially during the Holy Days). Christ had done nothing wrong (save messing up the Temple a bit). He healed the sick, fed the hungry, raised the dead, and generally tried to help people during His life. So you have to ask what did Christ stand to gain by allowing himself to be crucified for doing nothing wrong? The answer is NOTHING.

He gave everything for NOTHING in return. He wouldn’t have gotten power, or money, or women, or anything. He died for a purpose. Maybe He was crazy, maybe He was lucky that he rose again, but MAYBE He IS who He says HE IS. (The Great I AM).

He doesn’t ask for anything in return but that you accept Him as sacrifice for your sins and return to the original covenant of the garden of eden (no death, no sin, no pain, no suffering).

A Christian’s job is to spread the Gospel. Do nothing more than tell people who Christ said He is. Tell people what Christ did. From that point, they either believe or they don’t. It is up to the Holy Spirit to guide the hearts of man. It isn’t a Christian’s obligation to force someone to believe something or do something or even judge someone else for something they might have done. Every sin is as bad as any sin. But every sin is forgiven if you accept Christ as payment for that sin. He washes sin clean with His blood.

It is just a love. It is all about love. Love for God, Love from God. All worship is done out of love because God loved us first.

Sorry to get all preachy on everybody. I don’t know what gets into me. I don’t even go to Church much. But I do love God/Jesus for what He did for little ole unworthy me. I hope this sheds a little light of understanding and may the Holy Spirit guide anyone who might read this the rest of the way to the Truth. :)

ThackerAgency on August 13, 2007 at 11:41 AM

student on August 13, 2007 at 11:27 AM

Did you read the article in yesterday’s “quote of the day” here on HA? The Author makes the following point:

Democracies don’t easily adopt painful measures in the present to avert possible future problems

Unfortunately we won’t do anything until we are forced to. Then, historians will point to people like Robert Spencer and wonder why they were ignored.

TheBigOldDog on August 13, 2007 at 11:46 AM

Not to wander off topic and be a complete pig (oink!) … but its hard not to notice how pretty Michelle is in this clip. She’s truly a natural beauty who actually shines best when she skips the studio makeup and clever television lighting.

Okay, I’m going to go check myself into the Nancy Pelosi Heterosexual Male Re-Education Center now. Shame on me.

Professor Blather on August 13, 2007 at 11:46 AM

In this interview at least, I think Robert hasn’t taken serious the fundamentalists and Pentecostals in America who are so vehemently serious about bringing on the end times.

Much of the fear of them (aside from the typical hatred of America as found on the left) is the result of accurately understanding these Christians’ confusing the “two kingdoms” (the city of God and the city of man) as found throughout orthodoxy (small “o”). That is, they confuse theological covenants with political covenants and the result is made manifest in the idea that “as goes America, so goes Christianity.” And these people influence the Republican Party. As to how much, I’m not sure, though I assume it’s quite a bit.

Their (I’m thinking of of John Hagee, et al) encouragement of America’s ties to Israel is not for geopolitical, cultural, and civilizational, reasons, but because they seek the end times — the end of this world — and the return of Christ.

This is a spiritual disease and I think we ignore it our peril.

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 11:57 AM

Alla, I really want to download this one to my Ipod. There are people I cavort with that just NEED to see this. Can you make this one available for download? Thanks.

KMC1 on August 13, 2007 at 12:07 PM

This promises to be Robert’s best book yet.

infidel4life on August 13, 2007 at 12:09 PM

Excellent! All of it truly informative and right on target. God bless Michelle and Robert Spencer! It’s too bad George and Carl and the boys – our congressmen, never read Robert before taking on Osama and his bunch. Yes, history might point to Robert and wonder why we didn’t listen, but it’s not to late. There is still time to counter the jihadists. Our President and government have to stop, right now, appeasintg CAIR and the Saudi wahabbis in this country. Even tho the door to the barn was left open and the horses got out, they can be put back in, where they belong. Unfortunately the same can be said for the door to our borders. George and the ‘G’ still don’t get it, do they. It’s going to take more catastrophes on both fronts to put things right.

countywolf on August 13, 2007 at 12:12 PM

I have one question (trust it may be answered in the text (?), in the interview Robert states (on the question about Timothy McVeigh) that the verses in the Koran regarding Jihad are pre-scripted and valid for all time, whereas in the bible, this is not the case, Robert then goes on to state that “there are violent passages where prophets are given messages from God, and that’s a very troubling thing, and theologians have dealt with that — Jewish and Christian theologians in vastly different ways…” hmmm..”vastly different ways”? Or is it just “different ways…” as opposed to “vastly” different (?)

Slightly off topic — I have also read commentary in which the writer will allege that the “roots” or “source” of Muslim violence is grounded in either the “Old Testament” or from “The Crusades.” Thus, once again, side-stepping (exempting) Muslims from any responsiblity for their behavior.

J.S. on August 13, 2007 at 12:13 PM

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 11:57 AM

I’m also not comfortable with the Hagge/Copeland/faith movement/pre-trib crowd, but in my view Christian support for Israel has nothing to do with what they say or believe. It is based on what God tells us in Romans 11:17-19. There isn’t (or shouldn’t be) an agenda. We are a branch from the same tree.

infidel4life on August 13, 2007 at 12:23 PM

We can compare and contrast what Christians or Muslims have done in any given context and provide proof to support or reject either position.

However,… let us first look at the core doctrines.

Western Christian civilization is based primarily on Mosaic Law. The Ten commandments. First part is to give God appropriate Glory as God. Second part is to treat each other fairly in context of God’s wishes.

Eastern Muslim civilization is based on Sharia Law, which is primarily rule by fear and intimidation, through servitude and threat of death.

Is there any reason we can’t understand what this current global conflict is all about? Is it simply that the facts we see are simply not the facts we would like?

Western Christian culture is based on the ideology of fairness.

Eastern Muslim culture is based on the ideolgoy of submission.

What is it about this are we not understanding?

Lawrence on August 13, 2007 at 12:30 PM

Shame on me.

Professor Blather on August 13, 2007 at 11:46 AM

Shame for what? Saying what the rest of us are thinking?

Lawrence on August 13, 2007 at 12:33 PM

Allah,

Can we get this on You Tube? I’d really love to post this entire thing on my site. It’s really right up my alley, so to speak.

Great, great work.

John on August 13, 2007 at 12:42 PM

Their (I’m thinking of of John Hagee, et al) encouragement of America’s ties to Israel is not for geopolitical, cultural, and civilizational, reasons, but because they seek the end times — the end of this world — and the return of Christ. Drum on August 13, 2007 at 11:57 AM

Let me break it down for you. It all goes back to God blessing Abraham and saying this:

“I will make you into a great nation and I will bless you; I will make your name great, and you will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you.” (Genesis 12:2-3)

Now whose side would you rather be on when the caca hits the fan? The thing that separates Bible prophecy from all the posers out there is that it actually comes true. Besides the “end of the world” comes for all of us when we die. Why worry about something like Armageddon that you have zero control over, when you could be worried about where you’ll spend eternity.

Mojave Mark on August 13, 2007 at 12:45 PM

…its hard not to notice how pretty Michelle is in this clip.
Professor Blather on August 13, 2007 at 11:46 AM

What I noticed momentarily (when I was listening more than looking at the clip) was “I didn’t know MM had a red tat on her shoulder…”

eeyore on August 13, 2007 at 12:48 PM

Mojave,

That prophecy was realized in Christ. It doesn’t come true in nuclear war in the Middle East.

One ridiculous aspect of the Hagees of this nation is that back in the 80s, instead of Iran being the Gog or Magog or whatever, it was the USSR. The fundies were all wet preparing for that big final battle, but it didn’t materialize and so now they’ve set their hopes elsewhere.

Conservatives fete these people and it’s really stupid.

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 12:52 PM

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 12:52 PM

The valley of Armageddon is in Israel. No matter what country starts the end of days, we all know WHERE it’s going to be fought. Imagine a country the size of Wales causing all this consternation for the world.

Nuclear war WILL come, we all know that. The question is will we fight or submit to the demon moon god of Islam.

Mojave Mark on August 13, 2007 at 1:19 PM

eeyore on August 13, 2007 at 10:19 AM

Give up on him. He’s incorrigible. He’s so postmodern there’s nothing you can do.

One ridiculous aspect of the Hagees of this nation is that back in the 80s, instead of Iran being the Gog or Magog or whatever, it was the USSR. The fundies were all wet preparing for that big final battle, but it didn’t materialize and so now they’ve set their hopes elsewhere.

Hagee is clean off his rocker. Dispensationalists never die, they never fade either.

PRCalDude on August 13, 2007 at 1:19 PM

The valley of Armageddon is in Israel. No matter what country starts the end of days, we all know WHERE it’s going to be fought. Imagine a country the size of Wales causing all this consternation for the world.

Yeah. ‘Armageddon’ is better translated ‘Har Magedon’, or ‘Mountain of the Assembly’. It’s a figurative picture of the the universal church, not Meggido.

PRCalDude on August 13, 2007 at 1:22 PM

Nuclear war WILL come, we all know that.

I don’t know it. Will you prove it? And how?

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 1:33 PM

I’m sorry to see that this thread immediately devolved into squabbling about whether or not Christianity is a religion of peace. One thing for sure, Islam is not and it seems to me that the take away point from the interview is that we must wise up about this and start resisting it.

student on August 13, 2007 at 11:27 AM

That is in the title of the book and the blog entry, so the peacefulness of Christianity can’t be that off-topic. Actually it is critical, because resisting Jihad can only be effective by contrasting it with an alternative. You can’t resist with with secularism because people who are leaning toward Islam know they need a god in their lives, and so secularism won’t appeal to them. Showing them that Christianity is the only way to the true God is not only much better for them, but is the only way that will work.

pedestrian on August 13, 2007 at 1:44 PM

The greatest shame of Western civilization is/was slavery. In Europe and in America the force for its condemnation was Christianity and Judaism.

When civil rights issues were magnified in the 60s our messy society “exorcised” this demon for all the world to see. Our proudest moment. The casualties included lost lives of Christians and Jews.

In the Muslim lands slavery persists unabated even today, by the millions. In Muslim lands, civil rights is just another point of propaganda with a “liberal” use of socialist/communist language.

Maybe it is the heat.

Agrippa2k on August 13, 2007 at 2:05 PM

Drum,

Their (I’m thinking of of John Hagee, et al) encouragement of America’s ties to Israel is not for geopolitical, cultural, and civilizational, reasons, but because they seek the end times — the end of this world — and the return of Christ.

If that were the case, then Evangelicals would be supporting prostitution, abortion, murder, apostacy, global unification, and what they consider to be other signs that must happen before the return of Jesus. But they don’t.

It’s illogical to believe that they support Israel specifically as a prerequisite for the second coming but not all those other prerequisites. It’s also illogical that they don’t cite the need to support Israel on the basis of its being a prerequisite — instead they cite Genesis 12.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 2:15 PM

As an atheist, I urge Christians to make their case, so we can understand them and other religions. Otherwise, we trivialize not just Christianity, but other religions.

thuja on August 13, 2007 at 10:40 AM

Good point.

The thing is, though, that Christians are and do make their case. Unfortunately, the Christians making it into the press are usually those who are not very good at it and are being used by liberal editors as examples of bad Christianity. Because, I guess, good solid Christian teaching is just too scary to contemplate or report.

What is refreshing, in context of aethesist like yourself, is when you get the difference between true Christian teachings and false Christian teachings, and understand the dangers that false teaching presents.

Lawrence on August 13, 2007 at 2:17 PM

Here’s a downloadable audio mp3 of today’s show, for anyone who’s interested.

Bryan on August 13, 2007 at 2:21 PM

It’s illogical to believe that they support Israel specifically as a prerequisite for the second coming but not all those other prerequisites. It’s also illogical that they don’t cite the need to support Israel on the basis of its being a prerequisite — instead they cite Genesis 12.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 2:15 PM

Whatever his beliefs about Israel, his Christian beliefs are quite heretical.

PRCalDude on August 13, 2007 at 2:22 PM

ThackerAgency on August 13, 2007 at 11:41 AM

So you have to ask what did Christ stand to gain by allowing himself to be crucified for doing nothing wrong? The answer is NOTHING.

Lots of people do things that are not in their self-interest. And history is littered with numerous people deluded about their own self (David Koresh, Jim Jones, Mohammade, etc.) and who build a large following. And much of your argument is based on the belief that the New Testament is accurate, in other words circular reasoning.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 2:23 PM

Whatever his beliefs about Israel, his Christian beliefs are quite heretical

I’m referring to Evangelicals in general, not specifically Hagee.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 2:24 PM

Yeah, they may cite Genesis 12, but confusedly. This confusion is what leads, for example, Pat Robertson to pronounce God’s inevitable wrath on Israel because of its concession regarding Gaza. Pat Robertson, had he his theology and politics straight, should be more concerned with the real world fallout of that concession (and others). Why worry about the wrath of God (something Robertson clearly has little experience with) when the mayhem of Muslim fanatics is presently staring Israel (and us) in the face?

They do the same with all the “pray for the peace of Jerusalem” nonsense. We should indeed pray for the peace of Jerusalem (and everywhere else) but not because of some confused eschatology, but because the alternative is unthinkable in this very real world we presently live in.

To take politics and make it other-worldly is stupid.

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 2:25 PM

Regardless of whether or not their politics or theology is correct, my point was that their support for Israel IS NOT based on their end-times beliefs.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 2:30 PM

Because, I guess, good solid Christian teaching is just too scary to contemplate or report.

I’ll take your word for it, though I’m not sure what’s so scary about the teaching that man has escaped the wrath of God only because of the completed work of Christ. News like this kind of helps put politics in its place and might actually lead to some sane policy in the ME.

I guess it’s much more exciting to talk about “final battles,” the anti-Christ, and driving and being lifted out one’s car at 75 mph at the rapture. Funny, to me, that’s a hell of a lot scarier than the Gospel.

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 2:32 PM

>my point was that their support for Israel IS NOT based on their end-times beliefs.

I don’t agree. But nonetheless, were I Jewish, I guess I’d rather have ‘em freaking out over Israel in a nutty happy sort of way, than calling us Christ-killers and persecuting us.

The irony, is that most Jew-hatred today resides on leftist websites where peace and tolerance and diversity are supposed to reside and take precedence.

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 2:36 PM

I believed the way you do, until I read the book I cited above at 9:28AM. The author is a Jew who has had many experiences with Christian Zionists.

Previously I had no idea about the fundamental difference between Replacement theology and Dispensationalism, and how it affected Christians’ views of the Jewish people.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 2:42 PM

Christians are dangerous when they do not follow their religion, Muslims are dangerous when they do.

profitsbeard on August 13, 2007 at 10:02 AM

BINGO!!!

The more like Christ a Christian is the better person he likely is. The more like Mohammad a Muslim is the worse person he likely is. So I guess we should all want Christians to be good at being Christians and Muslims to be poor at being Muslims. Frankly the best Muslims seem to be those who are not very good at being Muslims.

MB4 on August 13, 2007 at 2:43 PM

Here is his website with more information on this book.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 2:43 PM

You can’t resist with with secularism because people who are leaning toward Islam know they need a god in their lives, and so secularism won’t appeal to them. Showing them that Christianity is the only way to the true God is not only much better for them, but is the only way that will work.

pedestrian on August 13, 2007 at 1:44 PM

I can resist them with secularism. I do resist them with secularism. And who said anything about appealing to them? I want them to take their beliefs and practices somewhere else and leave me alone. I don’t need Christianity for that.

student on August 13, 2007 at 2:48 PM

Since the Koran is the only “holy book” actually written by the founder of a major religion, Islam a special case. Upon reading it, one is faced with a stark choice: either it is what it says it is – the divinely inspired word of God – or it is the ravings of a madman. Can there be any other alternative? I think most people desperately avoid thinking about that.

Robert Spenser is doing a great service by encouraging people to actually read the Koran.

Halley on August 13, 2007 at 2:50 PM

loved all the post. As a christian i preach my beliefs daily and use words only when necessary.

riccangolf on August 13, 2007 at 3:07 PM

student on August 13, 2007 at 2:48 PM

There’s a billion of them and they have nukes. (How Pakistan got nukes and yet only 8 patents in 45 years is beyond me.) If they were willing to practice somewhere we wouldn’t be having this discussion. Given the Islamic commandment to treat non-believers as inferiors, there really is no just getting along with them. In this small world there will be endless conflict until they convert or we accept subjugation. My point was they aren’t going to convert to secularism. That was tried in Turkey and is gradually unraveling.

pedestrian on August 13, 2007 at 3:15 PM

My point was they aren’t going to convert to secularism. That was tried in Turkey and is gradually unraveling.

Then secular governments need to shut them down. Waiting around for Christian conversion is suicide.

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 3:26 PM

I have one question (trust it may be answered in the text (?), in the interview Robert states (on the question about Timothy McVeigh) that the verses in the Koran regarding Jihad are pre-scripted and valid for all time, whereas in the bible, this is not the case

That’s what I thought he said at first too. As the discussion went on I realized that what he said was that the Koran’s approach to jihad is “prescriptive”, in other words, it teaches that jihad is something the Muslims are supposed to do, much like a doctor’s prescription is something a patient is supposed to do. Furthermore, the Koran states it in a limitless fashion of fighting against unbelievers with no stated limits on time. In the few occasions in the Bible where Israel is told to destroy or attack a people group the limited group to be attacked is specified, a goal to be achieved is specified and the timing is explicitly understood. (I.e., do it now and stop when the goal is achieved.)

The limitless prescriptive verses in the Bible boil down to 2 commands: Love God and love everyone else, even your enemies.

EWTHeckman on August 13, 2007 at 3:27 PM

Bringing up witch hunters and Timothy McViegh is like a white guy bringing up Rocky Marciano or Larry Byrd.

Tony737 on August 13, 2007 at 3:31 PM

Then secular governments need to shut them down. Waiting around for Christian conversion is suicide.

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 3:26 PM

How is Pakistan going to do that? There rest of the Muslim countries are even less secular than they are.

Those captured Korean missionaries are exactly what we need a lot more of, except not captured.

pedestrian on August 13, 2007 at 3:31 PM

Previously I had no idea about the fundamental difference between Replacement theology and Dispensationalism, and how it affected Christians’ views of the Jewish people.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 2:42 PM

The term ‘replacement theology’ is the dispensationalists’ misunderstanding of our beliefs. We believe that Israel and its original people were (and are) a subset of the church. Those who don’t believe in Christ are cut off from the salvation originally promised to Israel vis-a-vis the Abrahamic covenant. Those who believe are ‘grafted in’ as ‘natural branches’ to the ‘righteous stump.’ (Romans 9-11). Many theologians (Geerhardus Vos, Calvin) believe that a massive conversion of the Jews will take place before the 2nd coming of Christ. Some modern Reformed theologians (Riddlebarger) see the nation state of Israel as possibly facilitating some mass conversion after the ‘time of the gentiles’ has come to an end.(Romans 11). How’s that for nuance?

PRCalDude on August 13, 2007 at 3:32 PM

There’s a billion of them and they have nukes. (How Pakistan got nukes and yet only 8 patents in 45 years is beyond me.) If they were willing to practice somewhere we wouldn’t be having this discussion. Given the Islamic commandment to treat non-believers as inferiors, there really is no just getting along with them. In this small world there will be endless conflict until they convert or we accept subjugation. My point was they aren’t going to convert to secularism. That was tried in Turkey and is gradually unraveling.

pedestrian on August 13, 2007 at 3:15 PM

Those Pakis can really think when they want to, can’t they? Islam forbids free inquiry except when it comes to jihad.

PRCalDude on August 13, 2007 at 3:34 PM

Lots of people do things that are not in their self-interest. And history is littered with numerous people deluded about their own self (David Koresh, Jim Jones, Mohammade, etc.) and who build a large following. And much of your argument is based on the belief that the New Testament is accurate, in other words circular reasoning.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 2:23 PM

I do believe in the accuracy of written eye witness accounts of Jesus’ time on Earth. Much of it can be corroborated in historical context (common crucifixion, Harrod’s decree to kill all babies under 2 is documented around the time of Jesus’ birth, and many others.) Everybody else lies. The written accounts have not changed. I’m not going to believe a human being. I don’t trust people. The Bible has not changed.

Those other people you compared to Jesus 1) died and stayed dead (you can visit their grave), and 2) stood to gain something from their delusions. Mohammed got booty, koresh got his young girls, etc, etc, etc. AND they all stayed dead.

Once again, it is not my job to convince you. That’s what the Holy Spirit is for. It is my job to tell you the story of Christ as it has been written and let you develop your own personal relationship with the loving God who loves YOU whether you want Him to or not. I don’t judge anyone because it’s written that Christians shouldn’t.

ThackerAgency on August 13, 2007 at 3:37 PM

>aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 2:43 PM

I understand what Hagee is about and the comfort many Jews no doubt feel from the support Israel gets from many American evangelicals. All I’m saying is that their support is theological, not political, and this will inevitably lead to trouble. That is, it’s far more effective and lasting to argue on the behalf of Israel when historical points backed by the issue of justice are used, rather than arguments based upon nebulous religious concepts such as “election” “chosen” “God’s people” and “love for the Jewish people.” When you get into that goofy theological realm, you’re essentially put yourself on Islam’s playing field, and we will then surely lose the battle, because Christianity is not a religion of war, and this battle, at least as it confronts us in this world, is geopolitical.

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 3:52 PM

All I’m saying is that their support is theological, not political, and this will inevitably lead to trouble.

You’re saying Israel would be in better shape if our support was political? Try telling that to the Iraqis as we pull out.

pedestrian on August 13, 2007 at 4:04 PM

the Irony here is this thread, Robert wrote this book to confront those that side step the big and real issue of Jihad by taking swipes at Christianity. And it being a red herring, well this whole thread backs that thesis up as its all about different Christian beleifs and not focusing on Islam/Jihad/Global Caliphate……and this isn’t really a mainstream, typical Joe Blow forum on the issue.

Conservatives UNITE, that is my wish. My fear is it will take another Clinton to do it, dang hard headed independent minds among us.

jp on August 13, 2007 at 4:09 PM

You’re making my point. When you say “Iraqis” who do you mean? If the US pulls out it will be consistent with the horrible hand we’ve dealt the average Iraqi at least since the first Gulf War. Where was Hagee when it was clear that UN sanctions on Iraq were doing nothing to harm Saddam, but a hell of a lot to ruin (and end) the lives of Iraqis, many of whom were Christians, and many of whom hated him a lot more than citizens of the US did at the time.

The point is, it would seem the right thing to do (not to mention the “Christian” thing) to watch out for justice for not only Iraq, but all people in the ME who will have it, regardless of whether or not they’re “chosen” “elect” or “loved by righteous gentiles.”

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 4:15 PM

I guess a good case in point at what I’m getting at might be Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who held Christian theological views that would strike a Jew as being pretty damned frightening. Nonetheless, Bonhoeffer’s fight was for political justice for Jews (granted, there was also an inescapable theological connection, but it was no where similar to Hagee’s).

Drum on August 13, 2007 at 4:21 PM

The funny thing about McVeigh is that he and Nichols had a co-conspirator that the authorities don’t want to talk about.

John Doe #2 was apparently a Muslim.

The Monster on August 13, 2007 at 4:23 PM

There’s a billion of them and they have nukes. Given the Islamic commandment to treat non-believers as inferiors, there really is no just getting along with them.

pedestrian on August 13, 2007 at 3:15 PM

That’s precisely why it’s time to wise up and start acting like they are a real menace. Sending missionaries to talk nice to them is not a responsible approach (ask the Koreans).

[...]well this whole thread backs that thesis up as its all about different Christian beleifs and not focusing on Islam/Jihad/Global Caliphate[...]

jp on August 13, 2007 at 4:09 PM

Exactly.

student on August 13, 2007 at 4:28 PM

The funny thing about McVeigh is that he and Nichols had a co-conspirator that the authorities don’t want to talk about.

John Doe #2 was apparently a Muslim.

The Monster on August 13, 2007 at 4:23 PM

also, http://jaynadavis.com

If this is true, the info on it will not be declassified until well after Janet Reno and Clinton are dead. I’ve heard this from several terror analyst before and I’ve always been curious. Linking Saddam to terror acts against Americans is something that needed to be done better a long time ago, it would stop the political dilemma we are in now.

jp on August 13, 2007 at 4:35 PM

That’s precisely why it’s time to wise up and start acting like they are a real menace. Sending missionaries to talk nice to them is not a responsible approach (ask the Koreans).

They tried Crusades for hundreds of years. Didn’t work. I’m not saying we shouldn’t vigorously defend ourselves, and I think the invasion of Iraq was the right thing to do. As we are finding out, Iraq is still a fertile recruiting ground for Islamists. What is missing is a strong effort to go with it to show them that Islam is a messed up religion, and to do that you need to show them a better religion.

Muslims already believe in a god, and we don’t need to change that. We just need to show them that the real God is loving.

pedestrian on August 13, 2007 at 4:39 PM

I do believe in the accuracy of written eye witness accounts of Jesus’ time on Earth….The Bible has not changed.

Again, that’s circular reasoning. You are assuming that the NT account is accurate.

Those other people you compared to Jesus 1) died and stayed dead (you can visit their grave), and 2) stood to gain something from their delusions. Mohammed got booty, koresh got his young girls, etc, etc, etc. AND they all stayed dead.

My point was that some of them did things not in their self-interest. Just because Jesus may have done things that were not in his self-interest doesn’t prove that he was a prophet or son of God.

Once again, it is not my job to convince you. That’s what the Holy Spirit is for

That is a non-sequitur.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 4:45 PM

pedestrian on August 13, 2007 at 4:39 PM

People like you scare me. You don’t want peace, you want a holy war.

Nonfactor on August 13, 2007 at 4:46 PM

Drum,

All I’m saying is that their support is theological, not political, and this will inevitably lead to trouble. That is, it’s far more effective and lasting to argue on the behalf of Israel when historical points backed by the issue of justice are used, rather than arguments based upon nebulous religious concepts such as “election” “chosen” “God’s people” and “love for the Jewish people.”

Christians may support Israel based on their theological views, but they certainly argue for America’s continued support by citing the other reasons you noted.

aunursa on August 13, 2007 at 4:48 PM

So what is the truth about the Crusades? Scholars are still working some of that out. But much can already be said with certainty. For starters, the Crusades to the East were in every way defensive wars. They were a direct response to Muslim aggression-an attempt to turn back or defend against Muslim conquests of Christian lands.

The Real History of the Crusades

TheBigOldDog on August 13, 2007 at 4:55 PM

Ahh. You gotta love it when people try to justify the Crusades.

Nonfactor on August 13, 2007 at 4:56 PM

Nonfactor on August 13, 2007 at 4:56 PM

Tell it to the Author:

Thomas F. Madden is associate professor and chair of the Department of History at Saint Louis University. He is the author of numerous works, including A Concise History of the Crusades, and co-author, with Donald Queller, of The Fourth Crusade: The Conquest of Constantinople.

TheBigOldDog on August 13, 2007 at 4:58 PM

The American Thinker has a great run down of the History of the Crusades

http://www.americanthinker.com/2005/11/the_truth_about_islamic_crusad.html

jp on August 13, 2007 at 5:00 PM

TheBigOldDog on August 13, 2007 at 4:58 PM

Of course a scholar couldn’t be motivated by his religion! He’s an associate professor, everything he says must be true! I can see clearly now!

Nonfactor on August 13, 2007 at 5:01 PM

Some extracurricular commentary: Doug Giles – Christianity Sucks and Islam is Awesome?.

MT on August 13, 2007 at 5:04 PM

As often as Michelle is hosting The O’Reilley factor, when is she going to have Robert Spencer on? I guess there needs to be some event to occur (other than book promotion) to bring him Fox news. He barely gets any exposure on network news and bringing him on more and more often will help feed his message.

Avatar72 on August 13, 2007 at 5:05 PM

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