In spite of all the chaos around them, many of these Christian victims were loved and protected by other Muslims. Most of their neighbors were zealots who only did what Mohammad called them to do! Others were nominal or secular Muslims who demonstrated love for their fellow man. Even though their religion is different than ours those who risked their lives to help Christians are the true heroes, but not saints, because they did what mankind knows is the right thing to do!
There are many "good" and loving Muslims. Many are coerced into staying Muslim for the penalty of apostasy is so great, even death! Others ignore the vengeful teachings in Islam and obey what was "good" in the Quran. Satan is deceitful. He always mixes just enough "good" in his deeds to propagate evil. Many things Mohammad wrote are good things, but it was to gain acceptance for wrong things. Some Muslims discern what is good or bad, but zealots for Islam swallow it all!
By the time Jesus had died sincere, but sincerely wrong, followers had already misunderstood who he was, why he came, if he died and whether he was even resurrected or not. It was even thought that Jesus was not a man nor was it a man who died on the cross. In modern times these skeptics still exist!
Paul spent much of his ministry in competition with a false gospel. Paul told Timothy:
1 Timothy 1:3 "As I urged you when I went into Macedonia, stay there in Ephesus so that you may command certain people not to teach false doctrines any longer."By far the most false doctrine was Gnosticism preached by many, but largely by the one who I believe was Paul's "thorn in his side": Simon the Magician or Simon Magus. The primary teachings of Gnosticism are:
- Material is evil and only spirit is good. Hence the Creator God is aa demiurge who is at odds with the Supreme God and this demiurge is against the spiritual world. There are those who call this demiurge Satan, thus it was Satan who created all material things in the universe. As such it is Satan in their view who is our father. The implication is that Satan tries to make the world a better place to live.
- That lesser Gods evolved from the Supreme God. (Aeons).
- Since all matter is evil then the body is something from which to escape. One can easily see the relationship between karma and endless cycles of reincarnation! Hence, they did believe in a physical resurrection of all people. (Note that it is physical only).
- That scripture has a deep hidden meaning and only those who have this secret wisdom would be resurrected.
- That Jesus only seemed to be human. In other words it was a phantasm who died on the cross.
- Thus incarnation was not accepted as right doctrine. (i.e. Jesus was not Man) and there was no virgin birth.
- That men only "fall" into the material world and that salvation is when the divine element returns to the divine realm by a spiritual awakening.
These are all false teachings. False religions distort Christianity on one or more of these elements. Regardless of the element the Creator's power and goodness is diminished and the efficacy of the birth and death of Jesus Christ is diminished! Being given that secret knowledge is the key to what opens the door to their own salvation. Hence, secret knowledge (gnosis) is given to those heretics!
The nature of Gnosticism brings me to Islam. Before I get into that religion let me first comment. Of course the perfunctory "I have many Muslim friends," is in order, but the reader expects me to say that. As a matter of fact my partner was one of my best friends and he was Muslim. This commentary is not against people, but is to point out the errors of Islam.
Like Christianity today, many of whom are nominal Christians, the same holds true for Islam. In Christianity people call themselves Christians because they believe that Jesus existed, but practise few if any of his teachings. In essence they consider themselves Christians because they live in a nation which defines itself that way and most people they know do as well. Nominal Christians establish a comfort zone by being like everyone else. They are a product of their place and time in history when it was in vogue to call oneself a "Christian". However, they fail to live as Christ taught. In order to be a follower of Christ, it's necessary to let Jesus be the model for one's beliefs and behaviors. Most Christians do not do that! They can be nice people, but in God's eyes, their nicety is as filthy rags!
True Christians are those who believe and practise the teachings of Jesus. The paramount teaching in Christianity is to love God with all the heart, mind and soul. Few people do that! Those that do are the few because that gate is strait, having a narrow passage. It's narrowness is that only those who believe in Jesus as Savior may enter in! After the gate is entered we find that the path is narrow. Many fall off the path. One must endure persecution and temptation to sin until the end of life. In other words, they must have steadfast faith until they die! These Christians are in effect "fanatics" because they are "fans" of Christ. In scripture they are zealots, not for Zionism, but for Jesus Christ!
Hence, zealous Christians are few and they can be recognized by their works. What are their works? Their "job" is to love others as themselves! They don't hate others, they don't murder others, they don't covet what they have, etc. Their love is so deep that they want others to have the hope of heaven just as they have! Such joy brings about the need to tell others of their hope. In secular terms, this is proselytizing and is not politically correct thing to do! Muslims take offense at others sharing their hope (because they love them), and have strict laws in their countries against Christians who show them this love! Why do Christians want Muslims to believe?
John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. "We tell Muslims about Jesus because God "so loved the world". God doesn't want anyone to perish in an eternal hell, so he has the grace to provide a sacrifice in our place. My sins are pride, lust, greed, selfishness and the like. The sins of Muslims include a false god. Allah, in Arabic, means God, but his nature is not the nature of The One True God! God has three "traits". He is Father, Son and Holy Spirit. He's not three Gods, he is One. Muslims and Christians agree on that, but Muslims fail to grant God any personality. God appears to mankind as the Creator Father, his earthly manifestation (Jesus) and his Spirit here on earth, the Holy Spirit.
Islam believes that Jesus WAS merely a prophet of Allah. Christians believe that Jesus IS God incarnate himself! Islam teaches that Jesus was merely transported to heaven and did not die on the cross, but that another person was substituted. Hence, Jesus (God) did not truly die for our sins! Since God didn't provide grace as a gift, then the only way to their paradise is by works. Hence Sharia Law provides the way. Unfortunately, their laws are for a different purpose! "The Ten Commandments" are ways to love God and others. Sharia is ways to punish people when they fail to obey!
Even Muslims zealots sin. ISIS members are great sinners. When Muslims sin they are harshly judged, sentenced and immediately punished. Even the types of punishment are unjust, unmerciful and lacking grace. God's reward when Christians sin is grace; he gives us another chance! What must Christians DO to be saved? Nothing at all! Although we don't deserve reprieve, all we must do is acknowledge that Jesus is God and his death on the cross paid for all our sins. Almighty God is a just and loving God. His righteousness is that he gives sinners a multitude of chances!
Zealot Muslims sin atrociously. They terrorize their own Islamic believers. Their only way of appearing righteous is to keep their own Sharia violations a secret for fear that their fellow Muslims will see their hypocrisy! Even the Twin Towers "martyrs" watched pornography before they were martyred! They thought what they did was their little secret, but now the world and Muslims know that they were mere hypocrites! ISIS is a caliphate founded on sin, lies and the deception of their own people. Not only are they secret sinners, but take pride in terror, rape and murder! What would a just Allah think of that? It certainly is not a reward they would give. Those seventy virgins are possibly only 72 lashes and burning flesh!
Muslims... use your head! God loves you, but Allah is merely a punisher god if he even was truly a God! God loves you and wants you to live for eternity. Allah deceives you. You even waste your lives trying to earn what can never be attained. Salvation is obtainable and free! Jesus knocks at your door right now. Answer that knock and you will be a new person; full of love and merciful yourself!
You believe that Jesus is coming back in the flesh. He is really coming back in body and spirit and as king. The real Jesus will battle your false Jesus who we call the Antichrist, and Islam will die for ever. I would hope that you want to be with the winner and Savior. That is Jesus. The false Christ will be destroyed!
Mohammad claimed to ascend to heaven the same place that Jesus died. Mohammad is now dead and in his grave. Jesus cannot be contained by walls. He IS ALIVE and in heaven right now trying to persuade you to believe in him! Don't look at nominal Christians in the west. They are infidels. Look at true Christians. You don't see them deep in sin, but living a righteous live. We share the same disdain of what you see. Many are not living as God would have them to live. Read the Bible and find the love of Jesus. He will give you love and joy, never vengeance and hate!
Even from a logical standpoint you should know that haters can never be happy. I've never seen such a pitiful group of believers than Muslims whose strong adherents hate the world, even their own believers! Jesus can take away that hate and those who turn from certain death in Islam can be made alive again in Christ!
Mohammad, just like the Gnostics, got secret knowledge, but those secrets were false doctrine. It wasn't Allah who gave Mohammad this knowledge, but Satan posing as Allah! God wants you to live forever in righteousness, whereas Allah wants you to die forever in agony! Only you can chose eternal life over eternal dying. Choose wisely!