Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Hatred and Violence in the Qur'an Awareness Month: "The curse of Allah is on the unbelievers"

Today's installment brings us some classic Qur'anic Jew-hatred:
And when We took compact with the Children of Israel: 'You shall not serve any save God; and to be good to parents, and the near kinsman, and to orphans, and to the needy; and speak good to men, and perform the prayer, and pay the alms.' Then you turned away, all but a few of you, swerving aside. And when We took compact with you: 'You shall not shed your own blood, neither expel your own from your habitations'; then you confirmed it and yourselves bore witness. Then there you are killing one another, and expelling a party of you from their habitations, conspiring against them in sin and enmity; and if they come to you as captives, you ransom them; yet their expulsion was forbidden you. What, do you believe in part of the Book, and disbelieve in part? What shall be the recompense of those of you who do that, but degradation in the present life, and on the Day of Resurrection to be returned unto the most terrible of chastisement? And God is not heedless of the things you do. Those who have purchased the present life at the price of the world to come -- for them the chastisement shall not be lightened, neither shall they be helped. 
And We gave to Moses the Book, and after him sent succeeding Messengers; and We gave Jesus son of Mary the clear signs, and confirmed him with the Holy Spirit; and whensoever there came to you a Messenger with that your souls had not desire for, did you become arrogant, and some cry lies to, and some slay? And they say, 'Our hearts are uncircumcised.'
Nay, but God has cursed them for their unbelief; little will they believe. When there came to them a Book from God, confirming what was with them -- and they aforetimes prayed for victory over the unbelievers -- when there came to them that they recognized, they disbelieved in it; and the curse of God is on the unbelievers. Evil is the thing they have sold themselves for, disbelieving in that which God sent down, grudging that God should send down of His bounty on whomsoever He will of His servants, and they were laden with anger upon anger; and for unbelievers awaits a humbling chastisement.
And when they were told, 'Believe in that God has sent down,' they said, 'We believe in what was sent down on us'; and they disbelieve in what is beyond that, yet it is the truth confirming what is with them. Say: 'Why then were you slaying the Prophets of God in former time, if you were believers?'
And Moses came to you with the clear signs, then you took to yourselves the Calf after him and you were evildoers. And when We took compact with you, and raised over you the Mount: 'Take forcefully what We have given you and give ear.' They said, 'We hear, and rebel'; and they were made to drink the Calf in their hearts for their unbelief. Say: 'Evil is the thing your faith bids you to, if you are believers.' Say: 'If the Last Abode with God is yours exclusively, and not for other people, then long for death -- if you speak truly.' But they will never long for it, because of that their hands have forwarded; God knows the evildoers; and thou shalt find them the eagerest of men for life. And of the idolaters; there is one of them wishes if he might be spared a thousand years, yet his being spared alive shall not remove him from the chastisement. God sees the things they do.
Say: 'Whosoever is an enemy to Gabriel -- he it was that brought it down upon thy heart by the leave of God, confirming what was before it, and for a guidance and good tidings to the believers. Whosoever is an enemy to God and His angels and His Messengers, and Gabriel, and Michael - surely God is an enemy to the unbelievers.' (2:83-98)
This passage reminds the Jews again of Allah’s favors, favors from which most of them “turned away” (v. 83), and chastises them for their willfulness and disobedience. Verse 85 summarizes their various acts of disobedience: "Then there you are killing one another, and expelling a party of you from their habitations, conspiring against them in sin and enmity." This culminates in the assertion that the Jews believe only in "part” of their sacred writings, and “disbelieve in part.”

Ibn Kathir says that they rejected parts of the Torah, and also: “they should not be believed when it comes to the description of the Messenger of Allah, his coming, his expulsion from his land, and his Hijrah, and the rest of the information that the previous Prophets informed them about him, all of which they hid. The Jews, may they suffer the curse of Allah, hid all of these facts among themselves…” Verses 88 and 89 emphasize that they have indeed been accursed for rejecting Islam. (This is why most Muslims don’t accept the idea that the Jews have any right to the land of Israel, despite Qur'an 5:21 and other verses: an accursed people doesn’t receive Allah’s gifts.)

Verses 94-96 issue a challenge: if the Jews’ claim that Paradise is reserved for them alone, why don’t they seek death, instead of being "the eagerest of men for life”? This is the foundation of a jihadist taunt, as an Al-Qaeda warrior in Afghanistan put it a few years ago: “The Americans love Pepsi-Cola, we love death.”

The true believers long for Paradise and disdain this world.

The passage ends with the assertion that the Jews' enemy is Allah himself.

This series inspired by Pat Condell.

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