Kingdom of Heaven : Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

That line alone should make people pause for a bit.

In fact, it should be joined by a simple yet effective illustration:
- Mohammed, in battle armour and carrying a sword, followed by his disciples also carrying weapons, saying "Submit" (or if you want, not carrying weapons nor armour, but always with an army visibly behind him).
- Jesus, wearing rags and carrying his cross, followed by his disciples whom were told quite clearly to lay down their swords by Jesus himself (Peter), saying "Decide".

I mean, it wouldn't be an unfair or inaccurate portrait, would it be?

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

Yes, it would. For one thing, Jesus never wore rags; the gospel of John specifically states that he wore a full outfit at his arrest, including a tunic woven all in one piece without a seam which was quite a high-grade item.

For another, he explicitly said he had come not to bring peace but a sword, and was executed for political anti-Roman sedition.

For a third, nowhere in any of the Gospels does Jesus tell his listeners to 'decide' anything for themselves, and the medieval Christian tradition (both Eastern and Western) certainly never suggested that he did. Quite the contrary, they firmly dictated what the faithful were to believe and do. (Were you aware that the word 'heresy' comes from a Greek word meaning 'choice, decision, opinion'? If you chose or decided your own belief or opinion, you were a heretic.)

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+14%3A25-27&version=ERV

There, want more? Because I can give you much more...

And by the time he was carrying his cross after been whipped, whatever clothing he had most likely was reduced to bloody rags, which was my implication (you do get context, right?)

And as for "he explicitly said he had come not to bring peace but a sword", I challenge you to the same I challenged the bellow responder.

Seems like you people get coordinated in your responses (and logic). Can't you guys come up with different replies?

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...


And by the time he was carrying his cross after been whipped, whatever clothing he had most likely was reduced to bloody rags


No, it wasn't. The Gospel accounts clearly say that he was stripped before being flogged, that he was wearing a loaned scarlet robe for his crowning with thorns, and that he didn't get his own clothes back till he was led off to be crucified. Then they go on to say that after he was stripped naked* to be crucified the soldiers divvied up his own clothes between them as a saleable 'perk' of their job; all except the tunic which they gambled for, because it was too good just to tear up. Those 'bloody rags' are a figment of your imagination.


https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Luke+14%3A25-27&version=ERV


Duh. You do realise, don't you, that "Decide if You Can Follow Me" isn't part of the text of Luke, just the spin the Biblehub boys chose to put on it. Here's something for you (John 15.6): 'If anyone does not remain in Me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers. Such branches are gathered up, thrown into the fire, and burned.' Sure, the people listening to Jesus could decide either to follow him, or be thrown into eternal hell-fire. Just as the inhabitants of the countries conquered by Muhammad and his followers could decide either to convert to Islam or have their heads chopped off. Each choice as coercive in its way as the other. (And before anybody here accuses me of insulting their religion, I'd point out that devout believers in both Islam and Christianity have deplored the promise-and-threat element common to both faiths.)

And of course it's a truly absurd line to have put into the mouth of a Catholic princess in the 12th century: a time when heretics were routinely burned alive, and one of the delights that was officially promised to blessed souls in heaven was the enjoyment of watching the torments of the damned in Hell.



* And I do mean naked; that's how the Romans crucified people. It's only because the Christian authorities jibbed at the notion of Jesus's willy being painted in churches for all to see, that the Crucifixion in Christian art has always included a loincloth.

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

"that he was wearing a loaned scarlet robe"

You just admitted he was wearing a robe (which is a clothing item). I never said he was wearing his own clothes, I said "whatever clothing he had", which in this case was that robe.

What else you got?

"Duh"

Fair enough. If we're going to play the quote mining game, how's this for starters?
"Slay the unbelievers wherever ye find them..." (Quran, 9:5)
"Fight everyone in the way of Allah and kill those who disbelieve in Allah." Muhammad (Ibn Ishaq 992)
"I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them." "Allah"(Quran, 8:12)
"As to those who reject faith, I will punish them with terrible agony in this world and in the Hereafter, nor will they have anyone to help." (Quran, 3:56)

And my very own favourites:
- The Apostle of Allah said. When any one of you awakes up from sleep and performs ablution, he must clean his nose three times, for the devil spends the night in the interior of his nose. (Sahih Muslim, Book 002, Number 0462)
- The Prophet said, “If anyone of you rouses from sleep and performs the ablution, he should wash his nose by putting water in it and then blowing it out thrice, because Satan has stayed in the upper part of his nose all the night.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 54, Number 516)

Heck, even the commentary from Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan states this is to be taken literally:
"We should believe that Satan actually stays in the upper part of one’s nose, though we cannot perceive how, for this is related to the unseen world of which we know nothing except what Allah tells us through his Messenger"

You sure you still want to quote mine? Don't make me paste the mentions of where Satan pees into or what causes him to pass wind (I'm sure it MUST be a figure of speech, it HAS to be...).

Don't bother quoting me OT BTW, unless you're willing to concede Jesus to be truly God and thus being able to ascribe the OT commandments to him (I have heard that one before, and when I point out they just conceded Jesus to be God, they kinda backtrack rather poorly).

It must be easier than address the point of my post (when comparing the founder of each religion side by side, it's crystal clear who offers what, once informed pick your poison)

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...


It must be easier than address the point of my post


And you clearly find it easier to quote-mine than address my main point, which is that the idea 'Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"' is a false dichotomy anyway - threatening people with hell if they don't accept your teaching is not essentially any less coercive than threatening them with decapitation, and faces them with an equivalent decision. Jesus, unlike Muhammad, was never in a position to physically coerce people to accept his teachings. It's futile to speculate whether he would have done so had he ever found himself in a position of power; but it's certain that if Muhammad had similarly been martyred at a time when he and his followers were still a threatened minority, any sect that survived him would have been very different, and a great deal less triumphalist.

Also my secondary point, which is that the whole notion that 'Jesus asks us to decide for ourselves rather than to submit' would have been literally unthinkable to a 12th-century Frankish woman, and that putting the line into movie-Sibylla's mouth was idiotic. (The great exemplar of Christian womanhood is of course Mary, whose virtue and wisdom Christian girls have been exhorted to imitate for millennia - and her wise and virtuous response to the Annunciation was 'I am God's slave girl'. You really can't get any more submissive than that.

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

"is a false dichotomy anyway - threatening people with hell if they don't accept your teaching is not essentially any less coercive than threatening them with decapitation, and faces them with an equivalent decision."

Is that so? A decapitation is an objective end of you life (no debate there). A condemnation to hell is a subjective possible future (it may not exist, and he may be wrong).

Apples and oranges.

"Jesus, unlike Muhammad, was never in a position to physically coerce people to accept his teachings."

Is that so? At one point he was welcomed into Jerusalem like a king (even if on a donkey). Had he harboured an earthly power trip he could have right then and there attempt to seize the city.

He could have gone to where he had most disciples and started arming them, raiding caravans, and build up his power base.

Yet he never did any such thing.

"'Jesus asks us to decide for ourselves rather than to submit' would have been literally unthinkable to a 12th-century Frankish woman, and that putting the line into movie-Sibylla's mouth was idiotic."

It may sound so, until you realize the not so hidden hint:
- Christianity is based on the notion that God is (among other things), reason, thus bound by itself (sort of speak, God cannot make 2+2=5) and thus Christians are encouraged to use reason to interpret the Bible and figure how best to apply its teachings in the real world.
- Islam however says God transcends even reason, and thus can will literally anything (even idolatry), and contradict himself if needed without explanation (the practice of abrogation in the Quran is based on that notion). Thus Muslims are discouraged to use reason and philosophy to interpret their teachings and apply them to the real world (why their golden age faded and never recovered).

Great article on that is here (it's long, you may want to settle for the end):
http://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/why-the-arabic-world-turned-away-from-science

"I am God's slave girl"

She actually said servant, not slave (don't expect a girl of that time and place to have 21 century notions/vocabulary of feminism and consent). And Christian theology has always maintained Mary was actually free to refuse.

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

Matthew 10:34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.

The church may shout but Darwin roars

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

Care to paste the full passage, alongside it's proper context and theological interpretation (one that Catholics, Protestants and Orthodox churches all agree upon)?

Because if you want to play the quote cherrypicking game between the NT and the Quran, I can tell you right now who's gonna lose, and lose huge (never mind getting into whom actually picked up an actual sword and used it to advance his religion beliefs, take a guess whom that was)...

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

Which translation of the Q'ran are you using? The one with all the blood and thunder, I'll bet. Are you going to dig up those three paragraphs by Churchill about Islam too?

The Christian god may be 'choose' - but it is also "choose wrong and you'll get smitten"

The church may shout but Darwin roars

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

Well finally, an independent reply:

"Which translation of the Q'ran are you using?"

None, just yet.

However, doesn't Islam literally mean "submission" (voluntary submission to God)? I don't need a Quran to know that. Correct me if incorrect.

But since since you bring up the translation issue, please be kind to answer me this:
- What translation are YOU using? Unless you're an expert in Quraish Arabic dialect yourself, how can you possibly know what your own book says? Or are you relying on what somebody else says it says?
- Why can't the Quran be understood in any other language? No other religion claims their texts cannot be understood when translated properly and assisted by commentary (not even the Jews, whose language is also Semitic and far older).

I know what the Bible says because:
- I've read it, cover to cover.
- Christianity don't claim their text can only be grasped when read in ancient Hebrew, Aramaic and classical Greek. A certified translation, introduction for historical/literary context and footnotes are deemed more than enough for anyone to take a crack at it, even me.

"Are you going to dig up those three paragraphs by Churchill about Islam too?"

Nope, wasn't planning to. Why would I? Was Churchill a renown scholar on the side? May as well quote Nietzsche regarding his opinions on Christianity (I've read all his work).

"The one with all the blood and thunder, I'll bet. "

Here's a serious question: Even I have picked up on the fact that the so called "peace verses" (the ones nobody objects to) are earlier ones (Mecca period) and the so called "sword verses" are later ones (Medina period). Is that accurate? That the verses more associated (rightly or wrongly) with violence and excess are the latter ones, which coincide with Muhammad's period after he attained power and started fighting (self defence, attack, power vacuum, whichever)?

Any truth to that?

"The Christian god may be 'choose' - but it is also "choose wrong and you'll get smitten" "

Fair enough, but a few key differences:
- You may get smitten in the afterlife, but at least be left alone in THIS one (the only disciple of Jesus to actually pick up a sword was Peter, and was ordered to put it down, Jesus himself never picked up any sword or spear or nothing but a whip to clear out the Temple by himself). Crusades don't count (we're comparing founders of each religion and immediate circle here, not their long after followers)
- Jesus never ONCE called for violence in any way (the "I came to bring a sword" clearly refers to his teachings will cause conflict and hardship to his followers for they will not be well received by many people, and no apostle/church leader/pope has ever even hinted they meant anything else. And his clearing of the temple never mentions even hurting a single person (and he doesn't call on anyone to go do the same, clearing the temple was his prerogative alone).

However, in the Quran, you can find numerous calls to violence and brutality, all from Muhammad (he's the only human author, whatever divine inspiration was only he got it). Sure you can say context/figure of speech/culture and such make a lot of difference, but still there's more than enough ambiguity for actual Arabic native speakers to take those verses seriously (literally) and go do horrific things (as misguided as they may be, they are still quoting Quran sections that do seem pretty in line with what they say).

You won't find any crusader or abortion clinic bomber (or US presidents) ever quoting Jesus or his 12 disciples to justify their atrocities. They all end up quoting the OT (or at best a Pope), which had dozens of authors over hundreds of years and is acknowledged to contain the many author's own culture/context/historic limitations/prejudices/biases/etc.

If you could say "well that was the norm in those times, and the Quran was written/filtered/inspired/whatever by someone from then, not today" then no problem (the OT gets away with that). But since the Quran is said to be literally dictated (not inspired) by Gabriel, it cannot have any error/bias/excess/whatever from those times both the OT and NT of the Bible can admit they have, and thus address whatever commandments they may have that don't pass mustard today.


Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...


What translation are YOU using?

None just yet


Islam literally mean "submission" (voluntary submission to God)?

Does it really matter? All religions work on the same principle of kow-tow to your God or else."


Even I have picked up on the fact that the so called "peace verses" (the ones nobody objects to) are earlier ones (Mecca period) and the so called "sword verses" are later ones (Medina period). Is that accurate? That the verses more associated (rightly or wrongly) with violence and excess are the latter ones, which coincide with Muhammad's period after he attained power and started fighting (self defence, attack, power vacuum, whichever)?

Any truth to that?

Pretty much, based on my admittedly limited knowledge. But doesn't the OT do the same? Desert tribes fighting for survival.


Jesus himself never picked up any sword or spear

Maybe not, but her exhorted his followers to.


in the Quran, you can find numerous calls to violence and brutality

Ditto the Bible and (so far as I know) the Talmud),


(he's the only human author, whatever divine inspiration was only he got it)

Says the Q'ran. But do we know for certain? And how many people wrote the Bible?


actual Arabic native speakers to take those verses seriously (literally) and go do horrific things

There seems to be an assumption here that ALL Muslims are terrorists or anti-western world fighters. If that were the case we'd all be dead by now.


You won't find any crusader or abortion clinic bomber (or US presidents) ever quoting Jesus or his 12 disciples to justify their atrocities

Well, lets face it, it is a lot easier to go for the OT. More blood and thunder there, But I'm sure that, with a Little research,you could find quite a few "smite the unbeliever" quotes from Jesus It only took mr five minutes to find the quote I put in my OP.


the Quran is said to be literally dictated (not inspired) by Gabriel


Isn't the Bible the Word of God? Your'e leaving bit of a loophole there if you say it is not.

Sorry if you are expecting a deep theological debate, btw - I tend to steer clear of religion and have to look up any references I need. The only 'big beard' I really respect is Charles Darwin (well, maybe Charles Dickens as well, but he wasn't that up on faith as far as I know )

The church may shout but Darwin roars

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...


Does it really matter? All religions work on the same principle of kow-tow to your God or else."


Well, pace God in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, if you have a God you pretty much have to kow-tow to him (or her), or what's the point?

What's unique to Christianity and Islam is that both insist 'Everybody has to kow-tow to MY God, or else'. This really was new in the 1st century AD. We can't be sure that Jesus (or, just as probably, St Paul) actually invented the concept of 'One God and one way of worshipping him that everybody must follow or go to hell', because there were a great many radical religious movements cannoning around the Middle East at the time, and our knowledge of many of them is very sketchy. But it certainly had no roots in mainstream Judaism, which has never included any such idea, or in Romano-Hellenistic paganism. And although the cult of Mithra paralleled Christianity in many ways, it made no claim to be the unique gatekeeper to salvation, either.

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...


What's unique to Christianity and Islam is that both insist 'Everybody has to kow-tow to MY God, or else'.
Yes. It's basically the most toxic legacy of the proselytising Middle-Eastern monotheisms.

But it certainly had no roots in mainstream Judaism, which has never included any such idea, or in Romano-Hellenistic paganism. And although the cult of Mithra paralleled Christianity in many ways, it made no claim to be the unique gatekeeper to salvation, either.
Yes. Because a guy might be an initiate of Mithras but also of other gods, and his womenfolk would follow other gods/goddesses that meant something to them. The Romano-Hellenic traditions were genuinely inclusive and diverse: gods from different ethnic cultures within the Empire could be honoured for different purposes in your life, and you had your household/family ones, too.

"Active but Odd"

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

Wow, I didn't know that. Thanks, Syn. for filling a gap in my knowledge of history (Well, one of the many gaps if truth be told.......)

The church may shout but Darwin roars

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

"None just yet "

Then you must know Classical Arabic well enough. Is that so?

"Does it really matter?"

It actually does. The term "submission" implies submit either to God or to his followers (while paying a tax). That second section is the problematic one.

"But doesn't the OT do the same? Desert tribes fighting for survival"
- The OT was not written by ONE person
- The OT is INSPIRED, not DICTATED. Which means whatever revelation is there is mixed up with those author's limitations.
- The OT is DESCRIPTIVE (of what happened), not PRESCRIPTIVE (it doesn't say Jews or Christians should behave TODAY like the Israelites and the Judeans did when taking over Canaan). Only the NT is prescriptive.
- Jesus clearly states that Moses gave ample licence to divorce (and to many other things) because the people back then had hard hearts (they couldn't be asked to do better). And then clearly tells them how they should improve on that now that they can do better.

"but her exhorted his followers to."
I'm sure you meant he, but again, quote me where does he tells his followers to pick up weapons to fight. The sword quote I already explained quite clearly.

"Ditto the Bible and (so far as I know) the Talmud), "
Not the NT, and the Talmud is from the Rabbinic Jews, I'll let them defend that.

"Says the Q'ran. But do we know for certain? And how many people wrote the Bible?"
We don't. And as I said, many many people contributed to the Bible over many many years, hopefully while inspired.

"There seems to be an assumption here that ALL Muslims are terrorists or anti-western world fighters."
There is none, otherwise I would have said many/most/all.

"But I'm sure that, with a Little research,you could find quite a few "smite the unbeliever" quotes from Jesus It only took mr five minutes to find the quote I put in my OP"

That's because the Bible contents are far more available (and known) worldwide. Pretty much everybody knows at least some of Jesus' sayings. But again, that sword section is not what you say it is. If there's that many more (from the NT), please put them here.

Heck I'll even give you a little help: try www.answering-christianity.org, it's a Muslim website attempting to mirror and answer the Evangelical www.answering-islam.org.

"Isn't the Bible the Word of God? Your'e leaving bit of a loophole there if you say it is not. "
No it's not. It's a human produced document (written by humans) supposedly while inspired by God. Whomever says it's God's instruction manual for us (meaning that he dictated it and the human authors simply dutifully wrote it down without injecting their own stuff there) is wrong.

It does contain God's specific commands (10 commandments) and laws (Torah) and Jesus' teachings, but also many other things followers would be unwise to take up as actual commands/teachings as well (like say conquering any particular land that takes your fancy OT style just because that's what the Israelites say God told them to do THEN)

"Sorry if you are expecting a deep theological debate,"
Oh no, this is good enough, not to worry!

"The only 'big beard' I really respect is Charles Darwin"
Touche! Gotta hand it to you, good one...






Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...


Then you must know Classical Arabic well enough. Is that so?

Do you?


The term "submission" implies submit either to God or to his followers (while paying a tax). That second section is the problematic one.

So it applies to Christianity and Islam. Christianity just worded it more subtly.


- The OT was not written by ONE person
- The OT is INSPIRED, not DICTATED. Which means whatever revelation is there is mixed up with those author's limitations.

WEe don't know either of thode things. Not for certain


it doesn't say Jews or Christians should behave TODAY like the Israelites and the Judeans did when taking over Canaan

Even the ten commandments? What about all the laws in Leviticus? Did God tell Christians which ones to follow and which to chuck out at some point?


please put them here. Heck I'll even give you a little help: try www.answering-christianity.org, it's a Muslim website attempting to mirror and answer the Evangelical www.answering-islam.org.


Personally I prefer evilbible,com http://www.evilbible.com/do-not-ignore-the-old-testament/what-would-jesus-do/


"Isn't the Bible the Word of God? Your'e leaving bit of a loophole there if you say it is not. "
No it's not. It's a human produced document (written by humans) supposedly while inspired by God.

So its worthless then.



"The only 'big beard' I really respect is Charles Darwin"
Touche! Gotta hand it to you, good one...


Probably just as well that I didn't mention Karl Marx........



The church may shout but Darwin roars

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

Checked that link, it's about as worthless as you think it's revealing.

Don't take my word for it, even Jews don't use that when arguing against Jesus's claims of being prophet/messiah/divinity.

What else you got?

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

All I can say is that anybody who claims to be prophet/messiah/divinity has severe mental issues anyway (Though St John was maddder, or on drugs).

The church may shout but Darwin roars

Re: Mohammed's "Submit" versus Jesus' "Decide"...

Here's a fun thought experiment: what evidence would you accept of such claims?

But your answer is not as easy as you may think: such evidence
- must be valid for you AND for other people
- must withstand the test of time

Think long and hard about that: what could you possibly ask for that people elsewhere, and in the future, won't dismiss?
- Video evidence? can be faked now, never mind tomorrow
- A miracle in front of everyone? Two words: mass delusion/hysteria
- A cosmic event nobody can deny? Some people today still think the Moon landing was faked, or that the Earth is flat.

Kinda hard to come up with something once taking that into account, heh?

Assume the resurrection was real and that Jesus showed up all over afterwards. That would be a pretty rock solid definitive proof for those times, right? Yet even if it did happen, it can be easily disbelieved or dismissed by anyone not there (or even if they were there).

So no evidence can possibly satisfy everyone.
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