It is almost impossible to reflect on the 10th anniversery of September 11th without considering the centuries of warfare that have occurred between Christians and Muslims. September 11th itself was part of that warfare.
As we all know both sides have been guilty of some horrible massacres. During the middle ages both the Muslim and the Christian world accepted the idea of Holy war, That God is behind a specific national army as it goes to attack another country. The Muslims believed this because it was clearly taught in their Holy Book, the Quran. The Christians, on the other hand, did not have a similar excuse. The New Testament clearly discounts the idea of a Holy War, until Christ comes back at the end of the age. Jesus said “My Kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world my servants would fight, so that I would not be delivered to the Jews; but now My kingdom is not from here.” (John 18:36)
Christians today have no excuse if they endorse the idea of a Holy War. Almost every Christian today has access to a Bible. If they read it they will see that Jesus did not come as a warrior: He came to serve. He died to save His enemies, not to kill them. By doing so he provided an example to all true Christians. We are not to treat our Muslim friends with hatred. We are not to hurl derogatory epitaphs at them or bar them from employment. We know how to treat them from the example that Jesus left for us. He told us to “love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you.” We need to love our Muslim friends and, if necessary, even die for them because we love them so much. Unfortunately, many Christians are forced to do just that in Muslim majority countries today.
Muslims on the other hand do not have the testimony of our Jesus to guide them. The Jesus they believe in never died for His enemies: He would never have dishonored God by showing that kind of weakness! Instead they have the testimony of Muhammed, a man who had approximately 9 wives, cruelly tortured His enemies, and proudly stole the wives of those he defeated in battle. This is the man that Muslims claim is the ultimate example for human conduct. He never blessed His enemies the way Jesus did (Luke 23:34)!
Not all Muslims believe in jihad. I understand this. Some of them are peace-loving citizens and friendly neighbors. But they are not peace-loving citizens as a result of believing that Muhammed is God’s prophet; they are peace loving citizens despite this. Some of them are probably secretly doubtful of the claims of the Quran, but will not leave Islam publically because they are afraid for their lives and the lives of their families. There are many cases, even in America, where former Muslims have been killed for changing their religion.
As the ten year anniversery of 9/11 approaches tomorrow we need to remember the victims of that horrible day. But we also need to remember the killers. Not because we hate them, but because we need to be aware that evil is still alive and well in this world. Not all Muslims endorse what the hijackers done. But all of them believe the same dangerous lie: that Mohammed’s bloody rampages were sanctioned by God, and that Jesus never died for his enemes. Islam must be defeated. It must not and cannot be ultimately defeated by war and blood shed. It must be defeated by love. Christians must show their Muslim friends that they love them even more than they love themselves. We must show the love of Christ in our actions, so that Muslims will learn that God loves them enough to die for them. This, alone, is a powerful enough antidote to defeat the legacy of Muhammed.