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We are an Assemblies of God church serving English speaking community in Stuttgart, Germany.

Pastor's Blog



Is Most of Islam Non-Violent?

Matthew Leighty

Captured Jordanian pilot Maaz al-Kassabeh was burned alive by ISIS.

Captured Jordanian pilot Maaz al-Kassabeh was burned alive by ISIS.

In a recent conversation about Islam on social media, someone wrote this to me: "The overwhelming majority of Muslims are peaceful." She quoted the following statistics to support her argument, "As for stats there are 1.6 billion Muslims in the world and <1% are violent. Most acts of terror in the US and Europe are not Islamic" (2016 pew research). So, is she right? Below is my response.

Let's me state it like this: Matthew 28:19 says “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.” This command to go into all the world is for ALL Christians (2.2 billion), but much less than 1% are actually going into the world to preach the Gospel as missionaries; why?

It's not that they don't believe that God said "go," it's that they are "going" in other ways. Sure they are not on the ground in places like China, Iraq, or Chile, but they support it, they rally behind the efforts of others, and at the very least they agree that missions work is part of Christianity. Why? Because the Bible says so.

In much the same way the Muslim community, while not directly engaged in acts of violence, supports it, rallies behind it, and funds it. Why? Because the Quran, and to a much larger extent the teachings of Muhammad, promote it. At they very least they accept violence as part of the Muslim experience.

So to say that less than 1% of Islam is violent is not true. It is like saying that less than 1% of Christians care about world missions. I also agree that this does not apply to the entire Muslim world. I know many Muslims that are only part of Islam from a cultural perspective, that is to say they were born Muslim. However, the same could be said of Christianity and the fact that these culturally religious people do nothing is more a reflection of their lack of faith and conviction. Also, there are major differences in Western (minority) and Eastern (majority) Islamic ideologies.

The question of interpretation is very cloudy in the world of Islam, but I am speaking of the Quran and the Hadith as interpreted literally, as we do the Bible. If you interpret the Quran and the Hadith literally, then you get violence, jihad, and hate. If you interpret the Bible literally, you get love, peace, compassion, charity, and grace.

Believe me when I say I am praying for more Christians to take the Bible literally and start living the words of Christ. When this happens the world will be a better place. However, I do not hope the same for the Muslim because it will result in much more violence, hatred, and make the world a far worse place.

I recommend reading the book Seeking Allah, Finding Jesus by Dr. Nabeel Qureshi. I have yet to read his other works but I hope to soon as I expand my understanding on this issue.

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