Islam Teaches That Faith Must Essay

Total Length: 985 words ( 3 double-spaced pages)

Total Sources: 3

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There are many examples of God's love, but much violence as well. The Bible is full of stories of warring peoples, fighting to the death for their beliefs. Persecution of the Jews, seen on a massive scale as late as the 20th century's Holocaust, was fueled by the New Testament, as Jews were blamed for the crucifixion death of Jesus Christ. Even after World War II, Jews in the U.S. faced persecution through restricted access to certain colleges, clubs and organizations. The Ku Klux Klan, known for targeting African-Americans, has also targeted Jews.

The 20th century saw considerable violence in Northern Ireland, as Protestants and Catholics murdered each other in the name of their respective branches of Christianity. Like radical Muslims, a relatively small number of people believed that violence was the answer, and the only way to demonstrate their commitment to their God.

The Westboro Baptist Church has garnered considerable media attention in the past few years because of its radical leadership. Preacher Fred Phelps and his small following (mostly the Reverend Phelps' extended family) are deemed a "cult" by some. They are extremists in the Christian faith. They have staged protests at military funerals, for example, making the case that God is punishing the U.S. For its tolerance of homosexuality by allowing soldiers to die in wars overseas. Members of the church protested the funeral of Elizabeth Edwards, who at the time of her death was divorced from one-time presidential candidate John Edwards.
Ms. Edwards was a proponent of gay rights and, as the church charged, blasphemous and faithless, responsible for launching "a smash-mouthed assault on His deity" (Jonsson, 2010). Although some communities have successfully blocked the protests by this small but vocal group, the Supreme Court ruled that the members of the Westboro Baptist Church are protected by the First Amendment and entitled to free speech, no matter how hurtful it may be. Many Americans disagree and good Christians everywhere are both saddened and outraged to think that Phelps' followers claim to be acting in the name of Jesus Christ to spew their messages of hatred.

Likewise, good Muslims do not want to be identified with the radical minority. In the wake of recent events, Muslims who practice their faith in a peace-loving way are fearful that they will be targeted because of association, in name only, with radical Muslims. As has been shown, radical Christians have used violence in the name of God. They do not represent the majority of Christians any more than the radical minority represents Islam. The pillars of faith, like the Ten Commandments, guide most practitioners of their respective religions to serve God in their own way, in peace.

References

Jonsson, P. (2010). Why is the Westboro Baptist Church picketing Elizabeth Edwards' funeral?

Christian Science Monitor 12/11/10.

Khan, D. (2008). The five pillars of Islam. Faces 24(6), pp. 12-13.

Rid, T.….....

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