April 16, 2006


Is Allah God? (Daniel Pipes, 6-28-05, NY Sun)

Historical: Chronologically, Islam followed after Judaism and Christianity, but the Koran claims Islam actually preceded the other monotheisms. In Islamic doctrine (Sura 3:67), Abraham was the first Muslim. Moses and Jesus introduced mistakes into the Word of God; Muhammad brought it down perfectly. Islam views Judaism and Christianity as flawed versions of itself, correct on essentials but wrong in important details. This outlook implies that all three faiths share the God of Abraham.

Linguistic: Just as Dieu and Gott are the French and German words for God, so is Allah the Arabic equivalent. In part, this identity of meaning can be seen from cognates: In Hebrew, the word for God is Elohim, a cognate of Allah. In Aramaic, the language spoken by Jesus, God is Allaha. In the Maltese language, which is unique because it is Arabic-based but spoken by a predominantly Catholic people, God is Alla. [...]

The God=Allah equation means that, however hostile political relations may be, a common "children of Abraham" bond does exist and its exploration can one day provide a basis for interfaith comity. Jewish-Christian dialogue has made great strides and Jewish-Christian-Muslim trialogue could as well.

In the modern world there's more we have in common than what separates us.

[Originally posted: July 3, 2005]

Posted by Orrin Judd at April 16, 2006 12:00 AM

The Christian God wants a voluntary parent/child relationship. He is our Father and he wants us to be his children. Allah wants a master/slave relationship, by force if necessary. Islam (lit "submit") preaches forced conversion and killing of recalitrants.

God is a parent. Allah is an employer. Allah pays a salary for following his orders (72 vigins). Christianity is voluntary; forced conversions are worthless and repugnant. You cannot earn your way into heaven by any works. God promises nothing except the opportunity to get to know Him better.

Allah asks his follows to die for him. The Christian God died for us. Allah is a god of power. My God is a god of love.

Posted by: Gideon at July 3, 2005 1:38 AM

Allah's directive to kill all us infidels may prove a stumbling block to rapprochement.

Posted by: erp at July 3, 2005 9:19 AM

Oh brother. Why can't we all just get along, eh OJ?

Posted by: NC3 at July 3, 2005 9:20 AM

We do.

Posted by: oj at July 3, 2005 9:30 AM


Same God.

Posted by: oj at July 3, 2005 9:30 AM

"Same God"

OJ, got a link for that one?

Posted by: NC3 at July 3, 2005 10:18 AM

But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.

Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

James, 4:6-7

Submission is not just the meaning of Islam.

Posted by: David Cohen at July 3, 2005 10:54 AM

Children of Israel, remember My blessing
wherewith I blessed you, and fulfil My covenant
and I shall fulfil your covenant; and have awe of Me.

Posted by: oj at July 3, 2005 11:06 AM

It is fit and becoming in all people, at all times, to acknowledge and revere the Supreme Government of God; to bow in humble submission to His chastisement; to confess and deplore their sins and transgressions in the full conviction that the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; and to pray, with all fervency and contrition, for the pardon of their past offenses, and for a blessing upon their present and prospective action.

Abraham Lincoln Declaring a National Day of Prayer and Fasting following the Battle of Bull Run

Posted by: David Cohen at July 3, 2005 11:50 AM

The God=Allah equation means that, however hostile political relations may be, a common "children of Abraham" bond does exist and its exploration can one day provide a basis for interfaith comity. Jewish-Christian dialogue has made great strides and Jewish-Christian-Muslim trialogue could as well.

We reserve our most bitter hatred for those who are most like us.

Posted by: Robert Duquette at July 3, 2005 12:05 PM

Unlike say, Catholicism, Islam doesn't teach forced conversion to Islam.

As long as you're a monotheist and not a pagan you're allowed to maintain your beliefs, of course, you must still submit to Muslim secular authority.

That's the whole point of dhimmi. You can't force people to become Muslims, but you can make them bow to the authority of the caliph.

Posted by: H.D. Miller at July 3, 2005 12:19 PM

And God puts His word above every name He is called.

Posted by: Renee at July 3, 2005 1:28 PM

Mono e mono. May the better mono win.

This is a fight among macho monos. Astarte is amused.

Posted by: ghostcat at July 3, 2005 2:44 PM

the american god is mars.

Posted by: cjm at July 3, 2005 2:49 PM

That's the whole point of dhimmi.

No, the whole point of dihimi is to humiliate the conquered people. It is quite the opposite of tolerance.

As Bat Yeor has said

"the traditional contempt for dhimmis - not so different from that of African Americans in the past - and irritation because they are outstepping their rights and must be obliged to return to their former status."

"One important aspect of dhimmitude is the principle of the dhimmi's inferiority to Muslims in every walk of life. This civilization of dhimmitude expanded on three continents, representing millions of peoples. Over the centuries, populations and entire civilizations disappeared, or barely survived.

This protection is abolished: - if the dhimmis should rebel against Islamic law; give allegiance to non-Muslim power; refuse to pay the koranic jizya; entice a Muslim from his faith; harm a Muslim or his property; commit blasphemy. Blasphemy includes denigration of the Prophet Muhammad, the Koran, the Muslim faith, the shari'a by suggesting that it has a defect, and by refusing the decision of the ijma - which is the consensus of the Islamic community. ... The moment the "pact of protection" is abolished, the jihad resumes, which means that the lives of the dhimmis and their property are forfeited. Those Islamists in Egypt who kill and pillage Copts consider that these Christians - or dhimmis - have forfeited their "protection" because they do not pay the jizya.

... dhimmis suffered many legal disabilities intended to reduce them to a condition of humiliation and segregation.

The shari'a comprises the legal status of the dhimmis: what is permitted and what is forbidden to them.

It is this comprehensive system, which lasted for up to thirteen centuries, ... the "civilization of dhimmitude." ...

The main principles of "dhimmitude" are:

1) the inequality of rights in all domains between Muslims and dhimmis;

2) the social and economic discrimination of the dhimmis;

3) the humiliation and vulnerability of the dhimmis. ..."

Posted by: Robert Schwartz at July 3, 2005 5:08 PM

Bat Yeor's book was good comedy.

Posted by: Ali Choudhury at July 3, 2005 5:30 PM

What, we are all Deists now?

Posted by: Jeff Guinn at July 3, 2005 7:17 PM

ac: why do you say that ?

Posted by: cjm at July 3, 2005 8:20 PM


Always have been.

Posted by: oj at July 3, 2005 8:29 PM

"we are all Deists now?"

I think now is when we're all supposed to hold hands and sing Kubaya together.

Posted by: h-man at July 3, 2005 8:31 PM


It's a Michal Moore style polemic designed to give soundbites for Islam-haters. I read it a couple of years back and was amused by how often the author would present quotes from the Quran by stripping them of their context and ignoring anything in that text or from history that would contradict her thesis.

Religious minorities in the Islamic are treated appallingly in a lot of cases. I'd be sceptical of how much Islam to blame is for that since in my experience the Muslims who hated Christians living in Pkaistan and India tended to have very negative feelings towards black Muslims and Muslims from traditionally downtrdden ethnic groups like the Bengalis.

Posted by: Ali Choudhury at July 3, 2005 8:53 PM

When Muslims begin behaving like normal rational tolerant human beings, I will believe that Bat Yeor is wrong. Until then she seems to fit the facts better than any alternative.

Posted by: Robert Schwartz at July 3, 2005 10:36 PM

ac: thanks for the elaboration.

Posted by: cjm at July 3, 2005 11:24 PM


I don't blame the instruction manual if users wilfully ignore it. The Islamic world is quite badly f***** up but there's a lot of factors at play beyond simply religion.

Posted by: Ali Choudhury at July 4, 2005 4:58 AM

And don't forget the always useful distinction between Muslim and Arab.

Posted by: David Cohen at July 4, 2005 11:35 AM

American Muslim magazine, which purports (I don't know how authentically) to represent the views of civilized Muslims in America, is unequivocal about whether all you guys are worshipping the same god: You aren't.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at July 4, 2005 8:44 PM

The Koran is authoritative. We are.

Posted by: oj at July 4, 2005 9:10 PM

The Koran says Jesus is a "prophet". Prophets cannot lie. Jesus claims he is divine. If the Koran is authoritative about prophets, then the similarity ends right there.

Ali's point about what is messed up beyond JUST religion is instructive. The worst excesses of Islam are found in the local cultural (tribal) influences that have permeated the religious mores. Female circumcision, revenge killings, shame killings, murdering rape victims, killing entire families over dowries, etc. - none of that is religious, but it is wrapped up tightly with "Islam" by the extremists like Mullah Omar, who merely have to be the MOST extreme in order to exploit the conforming nature of Islam to get people to obey them.

The common Christian response to such extremism is schism, mockery, and petty fussing until things ebb away. Different Jewish groups tend to just ignore one another. But the Muslims are different. Is this difference totally derived from the Koran?

Now, the Christian experience in the West certainly has had its share of violence and intolerance. And the death of Christ shows that the Jews had their moments, too. But such things were always meshed with politics (or money), just like much of the internicine Islamic struggles today.

The question is, who will speak for Islam? And when?

Posted by: jim hamlen at July 4, 2005 10:56 PM

The New Testament saying that Jesus said that does not mean that He did. For the Muslim the Koran is a divine text while the Old & New Testaments are merely corrupted human texts. Moses and Christ are prophets, though Mohammed is the final prophet. Christ just isn't divine.

Posted by: oj at July 4, 2005 11:08 PM

There are about 1.7 billion Muslims in the world, out of which about -- being very generous -- 20,000 Arabs are causing the US some concern. There are only 300 million Americans, and you can find 20,000 who believe any random piece of nonsense: that Saddam never had WMDs; that the Rathergate documents are real; that there was never a moon landing; or that ET flew 150 light years to Earth just to check their prostate. The Muslims seem to be doing okay in comparison.

Posted by: David Cohen at July 4, 2005 11:30 PM

ET is a doctor?

Would Muslims riot if he touched the Koran?

Posted by: ratbert at July 5, 2005 11:19 AM

The question, Orrin, is not susceptible to finding any answer in Scripture. The question is not what is but what believers believe is.

The American Muslims claim their version is 'the genuine rendition of monotheism,' which means yours is not and implies that yours will be replaced.

I think you're all nuts, but I can distinguish an almond from a pecan.

Posted by: Harry Eagar at July 5, 2005 3:51 PM

All questions are resolved by scripture, especially in Islam where the book is God's word. Of course theirs is the genuine monotheism to them. They don't worship a different God though.

Posted by: oj at July 5, 2005 5:09 PM

Do they worship God, or do they worship a book?

Posted by: jim hamlen at July 5, 2005 9:10 PM

The book, unlike the Bible, is directly from God. That's why desecrating the Koran causes such consternation.


Posted by: oj at July 5, 2005 9:55 PM

Do they worship God, or do they worship a book?

Posted by: jim hamlen at July 6, 2005 11:19 AM

They revere the word of God, as we do. Their upset over the Koran is the same as ours over the 10 commandments.

Posted by: oj at July 6, 2005 11:31 AM