We start today’s link round-up with something I wrote on Facebook this morning. It relates to two of today’s links, and I’ll link a third article in this:
Christians and Muslims worship the same god.
This isn’t and shouldn’t be a controversial statement. As a matter of history, it’s as much of a fact as the date of the Battle of Hastings.
Yet, for one college professor at Wheaton College, a conservative Christian college in Illinois, this statement was controversial enough that the college suspended her for being in violation of their Statement of Faith and her refusal to say that her belief that Christians and Muslims worship the same god were in conflict with that statement.
It’s an impossible statement to recant. It would be like trying to recant that π is the circumference of a circle divided by its diameter because the Bible says otherwise. That’s a case where the Bible is unambiguously incorrect; the only way one could say that π isn’t what it is is if they willfully ignored plain fact. Recanting that Jehovah and Allah are the same would be to fly in the face of fifteen hundred years of history and theology. She would have to lie.
Historically, until the time of the Protestant Reformation, Islam wasn’t always seen as a separate religion from Christianity as it is today. It was common for Christians to treat Islam (or, at they sometimes referred to it, Mohametanism) as a heretical form of Christianity, one that denied Jesus’ divinity. Muslims believe in Jesus, the Qur’an talks about him and the Virgin Mary both, but they don’t believe that Jesus was the Son of God. Rather, they believe that the early Christian leaders corrupted Christianity and brought in lots of nonsense. Frankly, I’m not sure the Islamic view of Christianity is totally wrong.
The four Abrahamic religions — Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Mormonism — all worship the same god, but they think the others have a faulty understanding of their shared god. The Qur’an, for instance, takes pains to say that Muslims should respect “the people of the Book” — Jews and Christians — because they believe in and worship the right god. (I’ve written before that I preferred the Christian heresies to the orthodoxy in the day when I had a theology.)
Christians and Muslims worship the same god, just in different ways and with different understandings. Wheaton College, by suspending a professor for stating an incontrovertible fact, is demonstrating their ignorance.
Now, for the linkage:
And tonight, to my surprise, I’m seeing Star Wars: The Force Awakens. There’s a work outing. I hadn’t planned upon seeing it (as I misunderstood the nature of said work outing), but the situation was better explained to me and there was an extra ticket, so tonight I’ll return to that Galaxy Far Far Away.
If there aren’t scene wipes, I’ll be disappointed!