HOW A CHRISTIAN REGARDS THE CHURCH OF THE FLYING SPAGHETTI MONSTER AND ISLAM

Touched by His Noodly Appendage, a parody of Michelangelo's The Creation of Adam, is an iconic image of the Flying Spaghetti Monster[1] by Arne Niklas Jansson.
Touched by His Noodly Appendage, a parody of Michelangelo’s The Creation of Adam, is an iconic image of the Flying Spaghetti Monster by Arne Niklas Jansson. (from here)
Christmas 2015 has passed. The showy lights and the gift-giving have passed. The cleanup and post-holiday sales remain. What Christians can take away are memories of family time and thoughts about a God who so loved the world.

There is also that time us news junkies spent perusing the Internet and the local paper. One article I read included the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. I wondered. Is the Flying Spaghetti Monster real? Do people actually worship it? The answers to those questions are, surprisingly, yes and yes. The Flying Spaghetti Monster looks to all the world like a spoof. The primary website promoting the “One True Church of our Noodly Lord” obviously poses as a spoof (see here, here, and here) against Christianity.  Yet it would be a mistake to assume the followers of the Noodly Lord are not serious.

Why serious? There is money involved. There is prestige. There is the power to make others think “correct thoughts.” There is the power to influence and control government. There is the worship of the state, and the state is quite real and concrete.

Whether inadvertent or not, the Flying Spaghetti Monster is a good symbol for an all-powerful state. The unblinking eyes. Tentacles that reach everywhere. Juicy meatballs that alternatively represent virility and the reward of true believers.

The word 'Allah' in Arabic calligraphy
The word ‘Allah’ in Arabic calligraphy (from here)

What does the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster have to do with Islam? Read on.

The followers of Islam worship a god they call Allah. Allah, I suppose, is a bit more traditional sort of god, a warrior’s god. No spoofing. Just worship Allah properly, and his clerics promise paradise and endless sex.

Some, such as those as those who run Wikipedia (here) equate Allah and Jehovah. Others (such as here and here) do not equate Allah with Jehovah.

Is Allah real? Do people worship Allah? Let it suffice to say that the dream of Allah — the wish for Allah’s blessing — is real. Because they wish to believe, people follow Allah with the same self-centered ferocity as those who worship the Flying Spaghetti Monster.

Both statists, the worshipers of the Flying Spaghetti Monster,  and Muslims have much in common. Both seek salvation through their own works. Where they differ is that statists seek their reward in this life and Muslims seek their reward in the next. Islam, however, is a practical religion. Muslims, their leaders in particular, have been known to eagerly benefit from rewards in this life.

So what does this Christian think of Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster and Islam?

  • Both the statists and the Muslims need Jesus just as much as I do.  These are the sort of people for whom Jesus gave us the Great Commission (Matthew 28:16-20).
  • From a political perspective, I find it difficult to choose between a statist and a Muslim who advocates Sharia. It is the choice between a rock and a hard place. Neither group respects the rights of Christians. Well, perhaps that’s not entirely true. The statist (essentially a Liberal Democrat in this country) thinks Christians have the right to a state funded abortion and/or contraceptives. The Muslim thinks Christians have the right to worship Allah.

Anyone who has studied nations dominated by Islam can figure out Islam is antithetical to God-given rights, but what about those who worship at the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster? What about those Liberal Democrats?

Consider how many Liberal Democrats equate what is moral with what it legal. Consider the Constitution itself. Which is more important to a Liberal Democrat, what the Constitution actually says or what judges says that it says?

What is the basic problem with a Liberal Democrat or a big spending Republican or a Muslim? Consider this verse.

Philippians 1:6 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.

The Christian sees virtue as coming from Jesus. If we have faith in Christ, He justifies us. Christians do not depend upon or even expect virtue to flow from the state. That is, Christians do not believe the state (or the Law (Romans 7:14-25)) can perfect mankind.

Yet both statists and Muslims expect some form of salvation from government or the Law, statists because they worship the power of government, Muslims because Islam ordains a theocracy.

Ironically, both the statists and Muslims prove through their actions the power of sin over man. With cowardly and treacherous glee, statists deride and torment those who recognize their right to make fools of themselves. With suicidal madness, Muslim radicals torture and crush the enemies of Allah. Because their egos demand preeminence, neither group leaves others in peace.

Recognizing and accepting the sinfulness of our nature, the people who founded this country sought a government designed to check our more vile impulses. Hence, James Madison advocated a constitutional republic (see THE ADVANTAGE OF A REPUBLIC OVER A DEMOCRACY). Even so, unless we are willing to see the need for a constitutional republic, we cannot make one work. So our budgets are out of control, much of our infrastructure is crumbling, our foreign policy is in a shambles,….. our government is tottering.

Therefore, if you do not believe you need Jesus, look carefully at what Islam has produced.  Consider what those who worship at the altar of government are producing. Then take the time to read and study the Bible. Pray to understand why Jesus is the only cure for what ails the human heart.

John 14:1-6 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

Jesus Comforts His Disciples

14 “Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also. And you know the way where I am going.” Thomas *said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, how do we know the way?” Jesus *said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through Me.

WHY ARE WE AFRAID TO DISCUSS ISLAM?

Keith DeHavelle‘s post, The Jihadist War, features a couple of interesting videos.  The first is a production of Dr. Bill Warner, a scientist/mathematician who decided someone needed to study Islam using statistical methods.  Intrigued by that first video, I decided to watch the one below.

Admittedly, I need to study Warner’s sources more carefully, but in light of what I already know, Warner’s theories make remarkably good sense.

  • Warner argues that political Islam is at war with non-Muslims. He points to history, current events, and Islamic doctrine.
  • Warner claims the rise of Islam brought about the Dark Ages. When I was growing up, I heard everything from the Vikings to lead in Roman pottery blamed for the Dark Ages. Yet while it may make sense to blame the Germanic tribes in part for the collapse of the Roman Empire, the Germanic tribes obviously did not cause the collapse of the Byzantine Empire.
  • Warner argues that non-Muslims have allowed themselves to become too traumatized to face the fact that we are at war with political Islam. He point to the Stockholm syndrome, and he says we are suffering from it. Here Warner and I part company. Frankly, I don’t understand why we refuse to point to political Islam and identify it as hostile and dangerous. Nevertheless, I am certain the Stockholm syndrome doesn’t explain it. I think the explanation has to do with the devout belief of some in multiculturalism. Why do people want to believe in multiculturalism? Since it is so irrational, I am not certain. Yet it does seem to me that those who don’t believe in Jesus Christ find it easier to accept multiculturalism on faith.

Anyway, for those with a short attention span (like me) Warner’s video is a bit long. Nevertheless, it is very interesting. So if you willing to make the effort, please comment. I would like to hear what you think.

ARE YOU ATHEISTS, AGNOSTICS, AND DOUBTERS READY FOR THIS?

Mosque
Muslims in prostration in Syria. (from here)

H/T to The “Call To Prayer” begins at 6 AM every day in Hamtramck, Michigan! by Lines By Liming.

When I read ‘s post I decided to have a little “fun” and investigate.  This story has actually been around for awhile; it’s just that the implications continue to become more dire, but there is an amusing aspect. Consider this September 2013 story, Residents complain that ‘call to prayer’ is too loud.

The debate over the Muslim call to prayer is reverberating once again.

At last week’s city council meeting, several residents of the Hamtramck Senior Plaza apartments on Holbrook complained about the volume level of the call to prayer coming from the Ideal Islamic Center, located across from the apartment complex.

Jeanette Powell said she’s not complaining as a way to “bash anyone’s religion.”

She said the call or prayer was broadcast at 6 a.m. and found the volume “overbearing.” (continued here)

Since the Ideal Islamic Center (another name for mosque) blasts its call to prayer five times a day, I expect that those atheists, agnostics, and doubters who are hostile to religion are probably fit to be tied. However, for some reason Muslims generally don’t seem to be much concerned by the possibility of offending such people. Christians would be. Muslims? Nope!

My personal concern is that I don’t want to see my country slowly turned into an Islamic caliphate. Because I fully support defending freedom of religion, I don’t see anything to gain by allowing hordes of Muslims into our country. There are plenty of nations dominated by Muslims, and most of them vigorously deny their citizens freedom of religion.

Even The Washington Post, famed for its propensity for putting lipstick on a pigs observed:

Is it true that Islam is uniquely unreceptive to religious freedom? Comparative political science can offer some helpful perspective. An aggregate, satellite view does indeed show a dearth of religious freedom in Islam. A comparison between the world’s 47 or so Muslim-majority countries and the rest of the world – derived from measurements developed by sociologists Brian Grim and Roger Finke and undergirding the Pew Forum’s rankings on religious freedom – shows that Islam clearly has considerably lower levels of religious freedom than the rest of the world and Christian-majority countries. (from here)

When the writer came down to earth, what countries did that Washington Post article identify as religiously free?

Finally, the Muslim world also contains religiously free regimes, adding even further complexity to the negative judgment of the satellite view. Examples of such regimes include Kosovo, Djibouti, Albania, Mali, Senegal and Sierra Leone – most of them noticeably outside the Arab world. (from here)

These nations represent the tiny exceptions that prove the rule. Each of these “religiously free” countries are small nations that have historical ties to the West. All of them are also poor. Therefore, their ties with the West remain important. So it is doubtful that their governments would risk overt discrimination against non-Muslims.

Anyway, back to that call to prayer story. Here are some of the news reports. First, let’s hear from the so-called Liberal papers.

Shariahville, USA: Cities ‘surrender’ to Islam by WND and Would liberals mind living next to mosques? by The American Thinker consider a plain fact. Hamtramck, Michigan is being invaded by an alien culture. When modern Liberals (not the sort of Liberal Thomas Jefferson was) speak of diversity, what they are doing is denying our People any right to protect the culture of America. Instead, because they hate America’s culture, they insist upon “diversity,” that all cultures are equally valid. What those Liberals are doing in practice is enabling those who would destroy America’s culture. Blind to the simple fact that some cultures promote rotten beliefs, these so-called Liberals risk depriving us our rights to Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness.

Islam is both a religion and a political system. The political system approved by Islam is Sharia. Because Sharia is a theocratic system, it is incompatible with America’s Constitution. Hence, we have nothing whatsoever to gain by bringing people who believe in Islam into our nation. In fact, when we do so, we risk national suicide.

Extremism — reblogged

 

Charles de Steuben's Bataille de Poitiers en octobre 732 depicts a triumphant Charles Martel (mounted) facing 'Abdul Rahman Al Ghafiqi (right) at the Battle of Tours.
Charles de Steuben‘s Bataille de Poitiers en octobre 732 depicts a triumphant Charles Martel (mounted) facing ‘Abdul Rahman Al Ghafiqi (right) at the Battle of Tours.

Here the object is to tag a fairly simple thought onto a more complex post, Extremism byKeith DeHavelle. Extremism considers the possibility of reforming Islam.

The Middle East is starting to look more sensible about Islamic extremism than is the Obama administration. Isn’t that a sad thing to say?

Here is a Saudi Arabian author being interviewed on television, and he describes the problem. He notes, correctly, that there is little difference between the “moderate” Muslim clerics and the most radical Muslim Brotherhood jihadist supporters: Both groups preach the same concepts from the same revered sources. He suggests that Islam needs a Reformation like Christianity had, and not just a Luther but a Calvin as well:

Turki Al-Hamad: “I don’t want to make generalizations, but most of our sheiks and preachers – or those who call themselves preachers – are incapable of producing discourse that would counter the extremist discourse, because the extremist discourse draws upon the same texts and sources as most of our sheiks and preachers. Their interpretation may differ, but the source is one and the same.”

What would a reformation of Islam look like? Sadly, we are seeing a reformation of Islam, but we just don’t see it as reform. However, ISIS and other radical Muslims probably do.

Perhaps we should try putting ourselves in their shoes. When Europe experienced the Protestant Reformation, what happened? Didn’t Christians make a large-scale effort to return Christianity back to its first century roots. Because those in charge of the status quo fought the change, many associate the Protestant Reformation with religious warfare. However, because Christianity does not support violence (Substantial numbers of Christians are pacifists.), when people began reading the Bible in large numbers, the violence subsided.

What would Islam’s 6th/7th century roots look like? When Muhammad started spreading Islam, he did so with force. Muslims warred upon infidels and punished those who refused to accept their religion. The violent spread of Islam is still the way large numbers of Muslims view at least one aspect of jihad (Jihad: holy struggle or holy war?), and their efforts to form an Islamic Caliphate in the Syria and Iraq looks altogether too much like what has happened before.

Depiction of the use of Greek fire, miniature from the Madrid Skylitzes (Related to the Seige of Constantinople (717-718))
Depiction of the use of Greek fire, miniature from the Madrid Skylitzes (Related to the Seige of Constantinople (717-718))

Would publishing the Qur’an and encouraging people to read it help? No. The Qur’an encourages Muslims to war against and maltreat infidels. Therefore, when we consider how to deal with radical Muslims, we may wish to review the events that stopped Islam from spreading into Europe. We may wish to remember that Christians fought back because hostile Muslims left them no other option.

Battle of Vienna, 12 September 1683 (from here)
Battle of Vienna, 12 September 1683 (from here)