Islam and the 'Great Religions'

Political correctness dictates that all religions are of equal worth; that there are “Three Great Abrahamic Religions,” and “The Arabs are Semites too, so they can’t be anti-Semites.”  All these clichés need to be buried.

While Christianity and Islam were both offshoots of the Jews and took from them the concept of having one’s own Holy Writ, their self-definitions as new faith communities were radically different.  The Coine Greek language narratives appended to the Hebrew Bible purport to be a continuation of Jewish history.  The Catholic Church even defines itself in Latin as Verus Israel, the True Israel.

But Muslims make no such claim.  On the contrary, the Koran re-wrote many of the stories in the Hebrew Bible in the spirit of Islam’s doctrine that Muslims are Allah’s true chosen people.  The early Christians left Jewish Scripture intact; the Muslims did not. Christianity wanted to hold onto Jewishness to a degree; Muslims dismissed it as a pack of lies.

Moreover, in plagiarizing the Jewish Bible instead of adding to it -- which makes of the Koran a form of copyright infringement or intellectual property theft -- Muslims claim that the discrepancies between the two versions are the result of the Jews’ theft of the Koran.  And never mind that the God of Israel bestowed upon the Israelites the Five Books of Moses in the year 1313 b.c.e. and the Koran dates to the late 7th and early 8th centuries c.e., almost two thousand years later.  When a Muslim is confronted with the contradictory narratives of the same incidents, he answers that Musa (the Arabic mispronunciation of the Hebrew name Mosheh) brought the Koran down from Mt. Sinai but the perfidious Jews then re-wrote it and called it their Torah until Muhammad came along and restored the original text.  In Islam’s moral universe, the Torah is a stolen, plagiarized version of the Koran (which tracks with the contemporary charge that the Jews also stole the Promised Land from the “Palestinians.”)

Likewise, the cliché that Islam is an Abrahamic religion must go.  To Jews, Abraham was the kindest of men, which fits his vision of the One G-d Who tested him by asking that he prepare his son for a human sacrifice in an era when that was normal religious ritual.  But in the end, He commanded him not to go through with it.  Abraham’s G-d, unique in the world, was opposed to human sacrifice.

Versus the Muslims whose behavior throughout history and certainly in our time reveals them to be not of the seed of a kind man, for they are masters of cruelty; head-choppers, mutilators, skyjackers, kidnappers and rapists.  Their Allah smiles on mass murder and no less the “glorious” sacrifice of oneself, viz. suicide.  Totalitarians, they also license themselves to slay anyone who does not venerate their prophet.  That’s not very kind. See recent events at the Paris office of Charlie Hebdo and Garland, Texas.

But most central to Islam’s ransack of Judaism is the claim that the son Abraham bound for a sacrifice was not Isaac but Ishmael, and that the Jews also lie about the location of that world historical event.  Jews say it took place on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem; Muslims say it happened in Mecca. By making the hajj/pilgrimage to the “real” site of the test, the Qaaba in the middle of the Grand Mosque, Muslims bear witness to their belief the Jews are liars.

And as for the third cliché, viz. the Arabs as Semites too:  no, they are Hamites.  Yes, Muhammad was an Arab descended from Ishmael, one of Abraham’s eight biological sons, but Judaism also makes clear that Ishmael was not his father’s spiritual heir.  Ishmael is even expelled (Genesis 21:9) from his father’s tents for being a “wild ass of a man” (16:12).  His expulsion at age sixteen or seventeen came about when he jealously mocked his little half-brother Isaac at the latter’s weaning party -- whose wise and perceptive mother Sarah, who had watched Ishmael grow up, realized he was capable of murdering her son.

Furthermore, Abraham and Sarah were descendants of Shem, son of Noah (whence the word “Semite”) but Ishmael was not.  While many nations hold that a son inherits his nationality from his father, the Jews do not.  For them, it passes through the mother.  Thus because Ishmael’s mother Hagar was an Egyptian, and Egypt was one of the four sons of Noah’s other son Ham, so Ishmael was a Hamite.

The Bible also records (21:21) that Hagar found him an Egyptian wife, which only compounds the evidence that his offspring were Hamites too.

And who was Ham? Noah’s “problem child” whose transgression was sexual in nature. (Genesis 9)

Indeed, to this day, sexually speaking, an abyss separates contemporary Judeo-Christian society from Islamic, and that is most apparent in the Judeo-Christian insistence on monogamy versus Islam’s polygamy.  It is part of the Western respect for women, versus Islam’s abuse of them.  (Feminists in the West can complain all they want about men, but compared to the life of women in Islam, they are living in paradise.)

Osama bin Ladin’s father sired children with fifty-six separate females.  Ibn Saud, the tribal chieftain who founded the Saudi Arabia where he grew up, produced today’s four thousand princes who monopolize that country’s wealth and vie among themselves for power.  Polygamy famously leads to rivalry among wives, among mothers fighting for their sons, and among half-brothers.  One could make the case that Islam’s attitudes toward women are at the root of its many social pathologies and why it does not belong in America.

American culture also enshrines Patrick Henry’s “Give me liberty or give me death”; the Statue of Liberty in New York and the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia engraved with the Bible’s Hebrew phrase marking the Jubilee Year, “Proclaim liberty throughout the Land.”

By contrast, Islam is no friend of liberty.  It means “submission,” and when a Muslim prays, he assumes the position of a slave, face to the floor.  There are fifty-six officially Muslim states, most of them dictatorships and not one is a liberal democracy that any red-blooded American man or woman would want to live in.

Until Islam reforms itself or is forced to reform, it cannot be regarded as consistent with American values.

Sha’i ben-Tekoa’s PHANTOM NATION: Inventing the “Palestinians” as the Obstacle to Peace is available at Amazon.com and www.deprogramprogram.com.

Political correctness dictates that all religions are of equal worth; that there are “Three Great Abrahamic Religions,” and “The Arabs are Semites too, so they can’t be anti-Semites.”  All these clichés need to be buried.

While Christianity and Islam were both offshoots of the Jews and took from them the concept of having one’s own Holy Writ, their self-definitions as new faith communities were radically different.  The Coine Greek language narratives appended to the Hebrew Bible purport to be a continuation of Jewish history.  The Catholic Church even defines itself in Latin as Verus Israel, the True Israel.

But Muslims make no such claim.  On the contrary, the Koran re-wrote many of the stories in the Hebrew Bible in the spirit of Islam’s doctrine that Muslims are Allah’s true chosen people.  The early Christians left Jewish Scripture intact; the Muslims did not. Christianity wanted to hold onto Jewishness to a degree; Muslims dismissed it as a pack of lies.

Moreover, in plagiarizing the Jewish Bible instead of adding to it -- which makes of the Koran a form of copyright infringement or intellectual property theft -- Muslims claim that the discrepancies between the two versions are the result of the Jews’ theft of the Koran.  And never mind that the God of Israel bestowed upon the Israelites the Five Books of Moses in the year 1313 b.c.e. and the Koran dates to the late 7th and early 8th centuries c.e., almost two thousand years later.  When a Muslim is confronted with the contradictory narratives of the same incidents, he answers that Musa (the Arabic mispronunciation of the Hebrew name Mosheh) brought the Koran down from Mt. Sinai but the perfidious Jews then re-wrote it and called it their Torah until Muhammad came along and restored the original text.  In Islam’s moral universe, the Torah is a stolen, plagiarized version of the Koran (which tracks with the contemporary charge that the Jews also stole the Promised Land from the “Palestinians.”)

Likewise, the cliché that Islam is an Abrahamic religion must go.  To Jews, Abraham was the kindest of men, which fits his vision of the One G-d Who tested him by asking that he prepare his son for a human sacrifice in an era when that was normal religious ritual.  But in the end, He commanded him not to go through with it.  Abraham’s G-d, unique in the world, was opposed to human sacrifice.

Versus the Muslims whose behavior throughout history and certainly in our time reveals them to be not of the seed of a kind man, for they are masters of cruelty; head-choppers, mutilators, skyjackers, kidnappers and rapists.  Their Allah smiles on mass murder and no less the “glorious” sacrifice of oneself, viz. suicide.  Totalitarians, they also license themselves to slay anyone who does not venerate their prophet.  That’s not very kind. See recent events at the Paris office of Charlie Hebdo and Garland, Texas.

But most central to Islam’s ransack of Judaism is the claim that the son Abraham bound for a sacrifice was not Isaac but Ishmael, and that the Jews also lie about the location of that world historical event.  Jews say it took place on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem; Muslims say it happened in Mecca. By making the hajj/pilgrimage to the “real” site of the test, the Qaaba in the middle of the Grand Mosque, Muslims bear witness to their belief the Jews are liars.

And as for the third cliché, viz. the Arabs as Semites too:  no, they are Hamites.  Yes, Muhammad was an Arab descended from Ishmael, one of Abraham’s eight biological sons, but Judaism also makes clear that Ishmael was not his father’s spiritual heir.  Ishmael is even expelled (Genesis 21:9) from his father’s tents for being a “wild ass of a man” (16:12).  His expulsion at age sixteen or seventeen came about when he jealously mocked his little half-brother Isaac at the latter’s weaning party -- whose wise and perceptive mother Sarah, who had watched Ishmael grow up, realized he was capable of murdering her son.

Furthermore, Abraham and Sarah were descendants of Shem, son of Noah (whence the word “Semite”) but Ishmael was not.  While many nations hold that a son inherits his nationality from his father, the Jews do not.  For them, it passes through the mother.  Thus because Ishmael’s mother Hagar was an Egyptian, and Egypt was one of the four sons of Noah’s other son Ham, so Ishmael was a Hamite.

The Bible also records (21:21) that Hagar found him an Egyptian wife, which only compounds the evidence that his offspring were Hamites too.

And who was Ham? Noah’s “problem child” whose transgression was sexual in nature. (Genesis 9)

Indeed, to this day, sexually speaking, an abyss separates contemporary Judeo-Christian society from Islamic, and that is most apparent in the Judeo-Christian insistence on monogamy versus Islam’s polygamy.  It is part of the Western respect for women, versus Islam’s abuse of them.  (Feminists in the West can complain all they want about men, but compared to the life of women in Islam, they are living in paradise.)

Osama bin Ladin’s father sired children with fifty-six separate females.  Ibn Saud, the tribal chieftain who founded the Saudi Arabia where he grew up, produced today’s four thousand princes who monopolize that country’s wealth and vie among themselves for power.  Polygamy famously leads to rivalry among wives, among mothers fighting for their sons, and among half-brothers.  One could make the case that Islam’s attitudes toward women are at the root of its many social pathologies and why it does not belong in America.

American culture also enshrines Patrick Henry’s “Give me liberty or give me death”; the Statue of Liberty in New York and the Liberty Bell in Philadelphia engraved with the Bible’s Hebrew phrase marking the Jubilee Year, “Proclaim liberty throughout the Land.”

By contrast, Islam is no friend of liberty.  It means “submission,” and when a Muslim prays, he assumes the position of a slave, face to the floor.  There are fifty-six officially Muslim states, most of them dictatorships and not one is a liberal democracy that any red-blooded American man or woman would want to live in.

Until Islam reforms itself or is forced to reform, it cannot be regarded as consistent with American values.

Sha’i ben-Tekoa’s PHANTOM NATION: Inventing the “Palestinians” as the Obstacle to Peace is available at Amazon.com and www.deprogramprogram.com.