An Invitation to the People of the Book: Let us Join Forces

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It is a fact that those centres of power that have religion and its moral values in their sights have combined the wide opportunities at their disposal and are acting in alliance against people who have religious beliefs. It is actually not that difficult to destroy, in the ideological sense, that wicked alliance, to eliminate the negative and destructive effects of atheist- materialist indoctrination, and to bring about a society where proper morality, happiness, peace, security and well-being prevail. The one way of doing that lies in the three revealed religions (Islam, Judaism and Christianity) joining forces in the light of that common objective.

The task of sincere Christians, Jews and Muslims who possess a conscience and common sense is to wage a joint struggle against evil and those who engage in it, to help one another and to act in a spirit of unity and cooperation. That unity must rest on the principles of love, respect, tolerance, understanding, harmony and cooperation. We must bear in mind the urgency of the situation, and factors likely to give rise to conflict, argument and division must be scrupulously avoided.

Here, Jews, Christians and Muslims are called to join in the light of common objectives to wage a joint struggle against atheism, social and moral degeneration, and to spread good morals throughout the world. This call is to all the sincere, scrupulous, benevolent, agreeable, decent, pacifist, and just Jews, Christians and Muslims.

From time to time we see images on the television of the rescue operations carried out in the wake of disasters such as earthquakes and floods. One common feature of all these images is particularly striking. People from different countries and nations, and members of different religions join forces in the aftermath of a natural disaster, and are willing to make any sacrifice and work hand in hand so that the victims should be rescued as quickly as possible. Even countries that are hostile to one another put their enmity to one side during such times of crisis. They rush without hesitation to the aid of the country that has suffered the disaster. And that is just what should happen, of course. In such an event it would be an act of the greatest injustice to bring up problems, conflicts, debates and prejudices rooted in the past at a time when people are waiting for help.

Let us also consider the situation facing the communities of the world: The worldwide activities of ideologies that take atheism as their basic principle – social degeneration, moral collapse, poverty, hunger, growing evil, families splitting up, people living in a spiritual vacuum, illegal activities, killings, conflict, war, tension…

There is no doubt that these and similar evils are rapidly dragging the communities of the world to the brink of a material and spiritual collapse. On the other hand, atheist-materialist, destructive and harmful philosophies pose a terrible threat to lives in this world and in the hereafter. As a consequence, there is no difference between the billions of people living in the world and the victims of natural disasters urgently awaiting assistance.

It is a fact that those centres of power that have religion and its moral values in their sights have combined the wide opportunities at their disposal and are acting in alliance against people who have religious beliefs. It is actually not that difficult to destroy, in the ideological sense, that wicked alliance, to eliminate the negative and destructive effects of atheist- materialist indoctrination, and to bring about a society where proper morality, happiness, peace, security and well-being prevail. The one way of doing that lies in the three revealed religions (Islam, Judaism and Christianity) joining forces in the light of that common objective.

The task of sincere Christians, Jews and Muslims who possess a conscience and common sense is to wage a joint struggle against evil and those who engage in it, to help one another and to act in a spirit of unity and cooperation. That unity must rest on the principles of love, respect, tolerance, understanding, harmony and cooperation. We must bear in mind the urgency of the situation, and factors likely to give rise to conflict, argument and division must be scrupulously avoided.

Religious reasons may have been cited in the past by members of these religions as an excuse for various conflicts and misunderstandings: That is a historical fact. Yet these stemmed not from the essence of the divine religions themselves, but from mistaken decisions and ideas of states, societies and individuals, and generally from expectations of economic or political gain. Whereas one of the common aims of each of the divine religions is for all people to live together in peace, security and happiness, and a conflict that works against that aim is a mistake in the eyes of all three religions.

When we look at the Old and New Testaments, the foundations of Judaism and Christianity, and at the Qur’an, the foundation of Islam, we see that pleasant words and behaviour are recommended in mutual relations. This is how the Bible describes the kind of behaviour that believers should adopt towards other people:

Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live: and so the LORD, the God of hosts, shall be with you, as ye have spoken. Hate the evil, and love the good… (Amos 5, 14-15)

He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? (Micah 6, 8)

…Ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men. (1 Thessalonians 5, 15)

To speak evil of no man, to be no brawlers, but gentle, shewing all meekness unto all men. (The Epistle of Paul to Titus 3, 2)

In our time, the way that the Christian world takes great care to abide by these principles of tolerance and respect thus set out is a development of the very greatest importance. A number of positive developments have taken place, particularly in the second half of the 20th century. The Christian world has now largely abandoned the view that other religions are totally mistaken and unfounded. Members of other religions are no longer regarded as sinners, and the view that they, too, can be saved has come to prevail. Christian writers, researchers and men of religion have widely expressed that idea. Those bodies representative of Christianity have decided to establish dialogue and cooperate with other religions in the face of the problems facing the world today. The conservative views that used to hold sway have been replaced by the wide tolerance that lies at the heart of the religion. With its own holy book, the Qur’an, and the hadiths of its prophets, Islam, on the other hand, has demonstrated its own tolerant views over the last 1,400 years. As a result, the atmosphere of mutual tolerance that has come to embrace both sides has now reached the very highest levels.

Another factor bringing Christianity and Islam together is the love the members of both religions feel for the Prophet Isa, or Jesus. In the Qur’an, it is revealed that all the prophets carried the same divine message, that they brought people glad tidings and warnings, and that they were at the same time the finest role models for their societies. For that reason, Muslims believe in all the prophets, making no distinction between them. In the same way that they believe in the prophet Muhammed, Muslims also believe in the Prophet Isa, and feel great love and respect for him. In the Qur’an, the Prophet Isa is described as “The Messenger of Allah and His Word” (Surat an-Nisa’: 171) and as being “A Sign” (Surat al-Anbiya’: 91) Important information about his struggle, miracles and life is also given. In one part of the Qur’an the Prophet Isa is praised in these terms:

When the angels said, ‘Maryam, your Lord gives you good news of a Word from Him. His name is the Messiah, ‘Isa, son of Maryam, of high esteem in the dunya and the akhira, and one of those brought near.                                                   (Surah Al ‘Imran: 45)

Muslims tolerance and just attitude towards the Jews has enabled them to live in peace and comfort in the Islamic world throughout history. Anti-Semitism has never been seen in the Islamic world. On the contrary, the Jews suffered great cruelty in Europe during the Middle Ages and sought the protection of the Muslim Ottoman Empire, and always lived in security under Ottoman rule. That situation forms the natural basis of the unity that will be established between Muslims and Jews.

In the same way that they believe in the Qur’an, Muslims also believe in the divine books that were revealed before it, and definitely believe in the Bible. Like Muslims, Christians and Jews accept that they are Peoples of the Book, in other words that they are included in the divine books revealed in the sight of God. They sincerely believe that the Old and New Testaments were revealed as guides, with the properties of separating good from evil and the lawful from the unlawful. In fact, the aims of the Bible given to the Prophet Isa, are revealed in the Qur’an in these words:

And We sent ‘Isa son of Maryam following in their footsteps, confirming the Torah that came before him. We gave him the Injil containing guidance and light, confirming the Torah that came before it, and as guidance and admonition for those who have taqwa.                                                   (Surat al- Ma’ida: 46)

One of the verses in the Qur’an regarding the Old Testament, the holy book of the Jews, reads:

We sent down the Torah containing guidance and light, and the Prophets who had submitted themselves gave judgement by it for the Jews – as did their scholars and their rabbis – by what they had been allowed to preserve of Allah’s Book to which they were witnesses?                                                     (Surat al-Ma’ida: 44)

At this point, the following question comes to mind, one which has been debated and considered for hundreds of years: What does one need to do in order to be one of the saved and earn the mercy and good pleasure of God? The answer to that question is given in the Qur’an, in a manner that allows no debate or doubt:

Those with iman, those who are Jews, and the Christians and Sabaeans, all who have iman in Allah and the Last Day and act rightly, will have their reward with their Lord. They will feel no fear and will know no sorrow.                                         (Surat al-Baqara: 62)

The great majority of those who believe in God today and serve only Him are members of the Judaic, Christian and Islamic religions. That does not represent a violation of God’s wishes. Members of different religions are invited to compete in terms of good deeds in a verse from the Qur’an:

We have appointed a law and a practice for every one of you. Had Allah willed, He would have made you a single community, but He wanted to test you regarding what has come to you. So compete with each other in doing good. Every one of you will return to Allah and He will inform you regarding the things about which you differed.                                       (Surat al-Ma’ida: 48)

As is made clear in that verse, God has set out different paths for different communities. The important thing is that the people on those different paths should compete in terms of good deeds. In other words, Jews, Christians and Muslims are called upon to compete in such areas as living in the way revealed by God, calling on people to exhibit proper morality and to do good, and avoiding evil.

The fact that Christians will enjoy a closer friendship with Muslims than with other beliefs is stressed in another verse of the Qur’an. The way that the Christians will be the Muslims closest friends, and the reasons for that, is stated as follows:

You will find the people most affectionate to those who have iman are those who say, ‘We are Christians.’ That is because some of them are priests and monks and because they are not arrogant.        (Surat al-Ma’ida: 82)

The earliest examples of this closeness and warm relations were experienced in the time of the Prophet Muhammed. Good relations built on the basis of tolerance, peace, respect, cooperation, mutual assistance, religion, belief and freedom of worship were established during the earliest years of Islam. Again in that same period, such elements of social life as marriage, commerce and neighbourliness were established in such a way as to set an example to all Muslims and Christians. That being the case, the following conclusion emerges when one looks at the verses of the Qur’an and the practices of the Prophet Muhammed: Islam poses no obstacle to dialogue with The People of the Book and cooperation and joint action with them. On the contrary, it encourages them. There is a strong parallel in this situation to both the understanding of tolerance and respect revealed in the Old and New Testaments, as we have seen above, and to the present attitude of the Christian and Judaic worlds.

Harun Yahya is a prominent Turkish intellectual.

Buy the relevant  / Harun Yahya’s book (s) now:

Islam Denounces Terrorism by Harun Yahya

The Evolution Deceit by Harun Yahya

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