About a month ago, Charisma News published an article called “Why I Am Absolutely Islamaphobic” by Gary Cass as an op-ed. The article is now removed since quite a lot of people were upset over the fact that Cass wants to steralize, deport and kill Muslims. You can still view the article on Cass’ website, and it’s not a pleasent reading. He collectively describes all Muslims as potential mass murders and says that there are only three “solutions” to the Muslim problem:
- Conversion to Christianity,
- “D.A.M.N.: Depart All Muslims Now.” (his words) or;
Cass immediately rules out option 1 because, in his opinion “History does not record a mighty move of God in saving masses of Muslims. I believe the scriptures militate against mass Muslim conversions.” Which means that he wants us to depart all Muslims, and wage war against them. “First trust in God, then obtain a gun(s), learn to shoot, teach your kids the Christian doctrines of just war and self defense.”
Oh, did I mention that he wants to “force them all to get sterilized” as well?
As a charismatic Christian, I think it’s totally unacceptable that Charisma lets this awful, hateful piece of shit on their website, and I think that they are extremely weak and cowardly to not issue an apology or any other sort of comment to the fact that the article is now removed. Cass’ Christian Islamophobia is one of the most extreme I’ve seen, but it’s unfortunately not rare in charismatic and evangelical circles nowadays to hear hate, prejudice and xenophobia towards Muslims. In my country, the racist party Sweden Democrats grew tremendously in the latest election, and since they build their politics on Islamophobia it has become more common these days that Christians dare to express hostility towards Muslims more clearly than before.
Christians who are anti-Islam are quick to point out that Muslims aren’t Christian (duh), and that we must combat their influence. Well, atheists aren’t Christian as well (they even tend to have much less respect for Jesus than Muslims), and yet I have rarely heard evangelical Christians proposing that we should deport, steralize or kill atheists. Isn’t it ironic that the same Christians who accuse Muslims for having a violent religion that wants to treat people with other faiths differently, usually have not so much problem with using violence against Muslims and treating them differently?
Now, I think there are several problems with the islamic religion – its view on the apostles and the New Testament is often historically inacurate, it has little room for pacifism (although several pacifist Muslims exists) and the official sharia view on the state is, with Christian terms, Constantinian, and as an Anabaptist follower of Jesus I think that is very problematic for the same reasons that I don’t like Christian Constantinianism (which has shaped European and American politics massively). Christians should be able to criticize Islam and witness to Muslims about the Son of God, I do that myself quite often when I’m out on the streets of Sweden evangelizing.
But when we bring in stuff like deportation and war on terrorism into this discussion, we want to use means that Jesus never used. Or have you read about how Jesus organized an army to fight the Pharisees, or how he wanted to deport the Roman immigrants from Israel? No, Christianity thrived even when it was oppressed and persecuted, but when Constantine connected the cross with the sword and Theodosius made it mandatory for all Roman citizens to be Christian, abolishing freedom of religion, Christianity became lame, dry and pagan.
I love when Muslims find that Jesus is the Son of God because I love them, and I hate when I see Christians who want to deport them or restrict their freedom of thought and freedom of religion. As Brother Andrew from Open Doors likes to say: “We must learn to spell ISLAM as ‘I Sincerely Love All Muslims’”.