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    Default Muslim Call to Christians

    Related Threads: * Introduction to Islam * Journey through Evolution * Redirected Arguments


    Muslim civic organisations, Muslim universities, heads of state of every Muslim country and leaders from every sphere from all across the globe recently wrote an open letter to all Christians in the world. A letter of this type is totally unprecedented and is truly a letter representative of the entire Muslim world.

    The full text of the letter can be found at "A Common Word" and I highly recommend that the full letter is read before conclusions are jumped to or irrelevant posts are made.

    See below for an abridged version of the text:

    In the Name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful

    A Common Word between Us and You

    (Summary and Abridgement)

    Muslims and Christians together make up well over half of the world’s population. Without peace and justice between these two religious communities, there can be no meaningful peace in the world. The future of the world depends on peace between Muslims and Christians.

    The basis for this peace and understanding already exists. It is part of the very foundational principles of both faiths: love of the One God, and love of the neighbour. These principles are found over and over again in the sacred texts of Islam and Christianity. The Unity of God, the necessity of love for Him, and the necessity of love of the neighbour is thus the common ground between Islam and Christianity. The following are only a few examples:

    Of God’s Unity, God says in the Holy Qur’an: Say: He is God, the One! / God, the Self-Sufficient Besought of all! (Al-Ikhlas, 112:1-2). Of the necessity of love for God, God says in the Holy Qur’an: So invoke the Name of thy Lord and devote thyself to Him with a complete devotion (Al-Muzzammil, 73:8). Of the necessity of love for the neighbour, the Prophet Muhammad said: “None of you has faith until you love for your neighbour what you love for yourself.”

    In the New Testament, Jesus Christ said: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is One. / And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength.’ This is the first commandment. / And the second, like it, is this: ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:29-31)

    In the Holy Qur’an, God Most High enjoins Muslims to issue the following call to Christians (and Jews—the People of the Scripture):

    Say: O People of the Scripture! Come to a common word between us and you: that we shall worship none but God, and that we shall ascribe no partner unto Him, and that none of us shall take others for lords beside God. And if they turn away, then say: Bear witness that we are they who have surrendered (unto Him).
    (Aal ‘Imran 3:64)

    The words: we shall ascribe no partner unto Him relate to the Unity of God, and the words: worship none but God, relate to being totally devoted to God. Hence they all relate to the First and Greatest Commandment. According to one of the oldest and most authoritative commentaries on the Holy Qur’an the words: that none of us shall take others for lords beside God, mean ‘that none of us should obey the other in disobedience to what God has commanded’. This relates to the Second Commandment because justice and freedom of religion are a crucial part of love of the neighbour.

    Thus in obedience to the Holy Qur’an, we as Muslims invite Christians to come together with us on the basis of what is common to us, which is also what is most essential to our faith and practice: the Two Commandments of love.


    Please see full letter at A Common Word: http://www.acommonword.com

    The letter was addressed to all major Christian Churches.

    These Churches returned very interesting responses.
    Last edited by wayfarer; 18-02-2016 at 04:58 PM.

  2. #2
    Banned Balstrome's Avatar
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    So I guess that leaves us out of the question, being Godless atheists and fence sitting agnostics, not to mention the many pagans of the world.. Oh well, we can make our own club.

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    Garfield's Teddy Pooky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Balstrome View Post
    So I guess that leaves us out of the question, being Godless atheists and fence sitting agnostics, not to mention the many pagans of the world.. Oh well, we can make our own club.
    Yeah you guys don't really count.
    Only one of these adds to your value as a human being: Consuming things other people have made or making your own.
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    Banned Balstrome's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pooky View Post
    Yeah you guys don't really count.
    Sucks really, and we don't even get to call done the Wrath of nothing on these believers.... Fruits of reason and rationality (No, OC not that type of fruit!)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Balstrome View Post
    Sucks really, and we don't even get to call done the Wrath of nothing on these believers.... Fruits of reason and rationality (No, OC not that type of fruit!)
    Surely atheists don't need Wrath. There is nothing that hurts more than reality.
    "The problem with internet quotes is that you can't always depend on their accuracy" -Abraham Lincoln, 1864

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pooky View Post
    Yeah you guys don't really count.
    We also don't bomb maim and pillage in the name of a fictitious being

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    Banned Balstrome's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by warchylde View Post
    We also don't bomb maim and pillage in the name of a fictitious being
    Of course we do, you know, Hither, Stalin, Pol Pot, Mussolini, etc.

  8. #8

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    Yale University scholars buy full page in New York Times to respond to Muslim letter!


    In the name of the Infinitely Good God whom we should love with all our being

    LOVING GOD AND NEIGHBOR TOGETHER:

    A CHRISTIAN RESPONSE TO A COMMON WORD BETWEEN US AND YOU


    Preamble

    As members of the worldwide Christian community, we were deeply encouraged and challenged by the recent historic open letter signed by 138 leading Muslim scholars, clerics, and intellectuals from around the world. A Common Word Between Us and You identifies some core common ground between Christianity and Islam which lies at the heart of our respective faiths as well as at the heart of the most ancient Abrahamic faith, Judaism. Jesus Christ’s (Peace Be Upon
    Him) call to love God and neighbor was rooted in the divine revelation to the people of Israel embodied in the Torah (Deuteronomy 6:5; Leviticus 19:18). We receive A Common Word as a Muslim hand of conviviality and cooperation extended to Christians world-wide. In this response we extend our own Christian hand in return, so that together with all other human beings we may live in peace and justice as we seek to love God and our neighbors.

    Muslims and Christians have not always shaken hands in friendship; their relations have sometimes been tense, even characterized by outright hostility. Since Jesus Christ (Peace Be UponHim) says, “First take the log out your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take a speck out of your neighbor’s eye” (Matthew 7:5), we want to begin by acknowledging that in the past (e.g. the Crusades) and in the present (e.g. the war in Iraq) Christians have been guilty of sinning against our Muslim neighbors. Before we “shake your hand” in responding to your letter, we ask forgiveness of the All-Merciful One and of the Muslim community around the world.

    Religious Peace—World Peace

    “Muslims and Christians together make up well over half of the world’s population. Without peace and justice between these two religious communities, there can be no meaningful peace in the world.” We share the sentiment of the Muslim signatories expressed in these opening lines of their open letter. Peaceful relations between Muslims and Christians stand as one of the central challenges of this century, and perhaps of the whole present epoch. Though tensions, conflicts, and even wars in which Christians and Muslims stand against each other are not primarily religious in character, they possess an undeniable religious dimension. If we can achieve religious peace between these two religious communities, peace in the world will clearly be easier to attain. It is therefore no exaggeration to say, as you have in A Common Word Between Us and You, that “the future of the world depends on peace between Muslims and Christians.”

    Common Ground


    What is so extraordinary about A Common Word Between Us and You is not that its signatories recognize the critical character of the present moment in relations between Muslims and Christians. It is rather a deep insight and courage with which they have identified the common ground between the Muslim and Christian religious communities. What is common between us lies not in something marginal nor in something merely important to each. It lies, rather, in something absolutely central to both: love of God and love of neighbor. Surprisingly for many Christians, your letter considers the dual command of love to be the foundational principle not just of the Christian faith, but of Islam as well. That so much common ground exists—common ground in some of the fundamentals of faith—gives hope that undeniable differences and even the very real external pressures that bear down upon us cannot overshadow the common ground upon which we stand together. That this common ground consists in love of God and of neighbor, gives hope that deep cooperation between us can be a hallmark of the relations between our two communities.

    Love of God

    We applaud that A Common Word Between Us and You stresses so insistently the unique devotion to one God, indeed the love of God, as the primary duty of every believer. God alone rightly commands our ultimate allegiance. When anyone or anything besides God commands our ultimate allegiance— a ruler, a nation, economic progress, or anything else—we end up serving idols and inevitably get mired in deep and deadly conflicts. We find it equally heartening that the God whom we should love above all things is described as being Love. In the Muslim tradition, God, “the Lord of the worlds,” is “The Infinitely
    Good and All-Merciful.” And the New Testament states clearly that “God is love” (1 John 4:8). Since God’s goodness is infinite and not bound by anything, God “makes his sun rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous,” according to the words of Jesus Christ (Peace Be Upon Him) recorded in the Gospel (Matthew 5:45). For Christians, humanity’s love of God and God’s love of humanity are intimately linked. As we read in the New Testament: “We love because he [God] first loved us” (1 John 4:19). Our love of God springs from and is nourished by God’s love for us. It cannot be otherwise, since the Creator who has power over all things is infinitely good.

    Love of Neighbor

    We find deep affinities with our own Christian faith when A Common Witness Between Us and You insists that love is the pinnacle of our duties toward our neighbors. “None of you has faith until you love for your neighbor what you love for yourself,” the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) said. In the New Testament we similarly read, “whoever does not love [the neighbor] does not know God” (1 John 4:8) and “whoever does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen” (1 John 4:20). God is love, and our highest calling as human beings is to imitate the One whom we worship.
    We applaud when you state that “justice and freedom of religion are a crucial part” of the love of neighbor. When justice is lacking, neither love of God nor love of the neighbor can be present. When freedom to worship God according to one’s conscience is curtailed, God is dishonored, the neighbor oppressed, and neither God nor neighbor is loved. Since Muslims seek to love their Christian neighbors, they are not against them, the document encouragingly states. Instead, Muslims are with them. As Christians we resonate deeply with this sentiment. Our faith teaches that we must be with our neighbors—indeed, that we must act in their favor—even when our neighbors turn out to be our enemies. “But I say unto you,” says Jesus Christ (Peace Be Upon Him), “Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be children of your Father in heaven; for he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good” (Matthew 5:44-45). Our love, Jesus Christ (Peace Be Upon Him) says, must imitate the love of the infinitely good Creator; our love must be as unconditional as is God’s—extending to brothers, sisters, neighbors, and even enemies. At the end of his life, Jesus Christ (Peace Be Upon Him) himself prayed for his enemies: “forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing” (Luke 23:34). The Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) did similarly when he was violently
    rejected and stoned by the people of Ta’if, saying, “The most virtuous behavior is to engage those who sever relations, to give to those who withhold from you, and to forgive those who wrong you.”
    (It is perhaps significant that after the Prophet Muhammad was driven out of Ta’if, it was the Christian slave ‘Addas who went out to Muhammad, brought him food, kissed him, and embraced him.)

    The Task Before Us

    “Let this common ground”—the dual common ground of love of God and of neighbor—“be the basis of all future interfaith dialogue between us,” your courageous letter urges. Indeed, in the generosity with which the letter is written you embody what you call for. We most heartily agree. Abandoning all “hatred and strife,” we must engage in interfaith dialogue as those who seek each other’s good, for the one God unceasingly seeks our good. Indeed, together with you we believe thatwe need to move beyond “a polite ecumenical dialogue between selected religious leaders” and work diligently together to reshape relations between our communities and our nations so that they genuinely reflect our common love for God and for one another. Given the deep fissures in the relations between Christians and Muslims today, the task before us is daunting. And the stakes are great. The future of the world depends on our ability as Christians and Muslims to live together in peace. If we fail to make every effort to make peace and come together in harmony you correctly remind us that “our eternal souls” are at stake as well. We are persuaded that our next step should be for our leaders at every level to meet together and begin the earnest work of determining how God would have us fulfill the requirement that we love God and one another. It is with humility and hope that we receive your generous letter, and we commit ourselves to labor together in heart, soul, mind and strength for the objectives you so appropriately propose.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Balstrome View Post
    Of course we do, you know, Hither, Stalin, Pol Pot, Mussolini, etc.
    And what fictitious being did they bomb maim and pillage for?

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Balstrome View Post
    So I guess that leaves us out of the question, being Godless atheists and fence sitting agnostics, not to mention the many pagans of the world.. Oh well, we can make our own club.
    Lol, you and your mates are welcome to post comments, within the requested framework. There will be plenty of opportunities to discuss "those other matters" that tickle your fancy in other threads. Surely atheists and agnostics can comment on interaction between religious groups based on what THEY have in common, without you sharing that commonality, and without stooping to ridicule and denigration.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by wayfarer View Post
    Lol, you and your mates are welcome to post comments, within the requested framework. There will be plenty of opportunities to discuss "those other matters" that tickle your fancy in other threads. Surely atheists and agnostics can comment on interaction between religious groups based on what THEY have in common, without you sharing that commonality, and without stooping to ridicule and denigration.
    Welcome to PD, any break from rza's ramblings will be a much needed relief.
    I once dated a girl who lisped, she wanted to watch Faith Like Potatoes. 20 minutes in it dawned that we weren't watching a movie about the Elephant Man...

  12. #12
    Garfield's Teddy Pooky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wayfarer View Post
    and without stooping to ridicule and denigration.
    That seems to be the only argument tactic Atheists employ.
    Only one of these adds to your value as a human being: Consuming things other people have made or making your own.
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  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pooky View Post
    That seems to be the only argument tactic Atheists employ.
    Normally I don't feed little trolls but I just to set you straight (as you seem to be trying to denigrate atheists) , atheists use logic, rationality and reason as their main arguments.

    It is ironic in your trolling of atheists that the fingers you are trying so hard to point at atheists are just your own ones pointing back at you.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Balstrome View Post
    So I guess that leaves us out of the question, being Godless atheists and fence sitting agnostics, not to mention the many pagans of the world.. Oh well, we can make our own club.
    Remember that you need to arrange your own "heavens", because you wont be allowed in any of the 80 or so heavens reserved for Muslims.

  15. #15
    King of the Hippies copacetic's Avatar
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    Holy bananas, we are going to be REALLY outnumbered now.

    If you do in fact have a learning disability, I apologise...

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