UI – Part 267 – How Will The Movie End
A joyful, wise and caring Muslim would be a person all would enjoy. There are many that love the Lord and see life a victory for those who love Him. What is behind the veil? Can they be servants, as was Christ? Was Muhammad a servant? Did he not demand those who followed never leave? Freedom denied. When beheading the Banu Qurayza Jews was he being tolerant and caring? So they did not agree; did they deserve to die as they did, at Muhammad’s command?
I struggle understanding the foundational elements of Islam. History, timing, interpretation, and influences on the scholars of Islam when they teach create a fog over the world of Islam making it difficult to see what lies beneath. No single pattern can be found that makes a perfect outfit to suit the character of the right guided Islamist. It is a dilemma of unmitigated proportions that suggests a world All for Allah is impossible. It cannot avoid conflict and disagreements.
Movies – Christianity – Islam
The two dominant religions of the world– Christianity and Islam – with over a Billion adherents each are the movies we need to see. Their scripts are written in Scripture – the Bible and the Quran, respectively. The Quran uses the Bible as its basis. A review of the content of the script of Islam raises in my mind all too many questions. The directors are the many scholars and teachers who continue to transform the movies from black and white, to talkies, to CinemaScope, to widescreen, to high-definition, even 3D, and more to come with future technological advances. How the story is portrayed is ever-changing and not fully accepted or agreed upon by the many hands at play in preparing the edition for the viewers.
Muslim’s Movie Based on Quran
Muslims have a Quran few can read. It needs translation and interpretation. It may be a one copy book, but its history tells us Caliphs after Muhammad were responsible for its composition. Companions and Memorizers of words spoken by Muhammad were the source of much of this Scripture. Many Memorizers, hundreds, were lost, died, in the Battle of Yamama after Muhammad’s death, during the reign of the 1st Caliph. This fact tells us the Quran is incomplete. Interpreting the Quran uses Hadiths, tens of thousands that many scholars find useful and many scholars find problematic, thus taking Bukhari writings one by one as preferred or useful for their purposes. The first of the Hadiths came over 200 years after Muhammad died which is a large gap of ancient history lost and/or garbled in the mouth to mouth recitations of persons who shared the information one to another.
The 2nd and 3rd Caliphs finished the Book. The 2nd a great military man who expanded the territory Muhammad established for Allah beyond the borders of the Arabian Peninsula. He imposed restrictions on those conquered. One restriction said residents could not pursue or promote (proselytize) a belief other than that brought to them by the commander. His success was attributed to Allah, and their future would now rely on Allah. He established laws that have become components of Islamic Law and reflected in part in the Quran.
The 3rd Caliph from Muhammad’s home town took the opportunity to complete this composition. There was more than one draft, but he chose and destroyed all but one Book. He had a hand in the final document, to include, I contend, useful language to suit his understanding and control. Did his assassination occur before or after the final Scripture was struck? The scribes who made additional copies could they have made alterations suitable to the overseer?
The Hadiths and Sunnah (traditions) when amassed represent thousands and thousands of pages. Some claim over 700,000. They are also relied upon to determine and define Islam by one faction or another, useful in the formation of local Sharia Law. But not all scholars are in accord with what and whose writings apply. They are sourced to interpret and explain the Quran. These are secondary source documents filled with hearsay. From Wikipedia, “Bukhari’s collection which is considered by many traditional religious scholars as the most reliable was compiled two centuries after Muhammad’s death.”[i] (read more). Bukhari was born 238 years after Muhammad’s burial. Different Muslim sects rely on different Hadiths. And within the sects the teachers scale what is reflected as tradition from weak to strong. They do not all agree on the rankings. As time passed more Hadiths, hundreds, possibly thousands, kept appearing, 300 and 400 years after Muhammad. Who chooses?
During Muhammad’s lifetime the term ‘Islam’ or the appellation ‘Muslim’ was never used. At least not in historical documents. That came later.
Can it be reasonably expected that there was no corruption, no deception, in the preparation of the Quran and the thousands upon thousands of Hadiths. We know that one is permitted in Islam, when advancing their belief, to use deception. Why would this practice not apply to early compilations? After all the Scripture was considered by the 2nd Caliph as a necessary document to guide those conquered. The people overcome were accustomed to Scripture – The Bible – and found such a guide useful in their daily lives. He encouraged the Quran be compiled as quickly as possible. And why would anyone need to record that “Allah is free from liability to the idolaters, and so is His Messenger,” (Sura 9:3.) Why would God be anything other than truthful? Then suggesting the ‘superiority’ of those that believe as the conquerors, the early Caliphs, be acknowledged, as in Sura 9.29. This appears more man’s wording than God’s.
My reading of the Quran (English interpretations) suggests the world as perceived by the Islamists is not as the Christian (or Jewish) God intended, except at the end, when times conclude and Judgment is meted. Peace is problematic, while fighting is ongoing.
Thus the Muslim movie – filled with suspicion and doubt. War is common, with outsiders and within. After the founder dies imperialism of regions bordering the Arabian Peninsula begins in earnest. The Bible is held high, often referenced, but rewritten to serve Allah’s needs, and those of their prophet. The Messenger demonstrates vengeance towards those who would not accept his one god Allah belief; this posture continues as the conquerors find advantageous wars fought in the name of the Almighty. Easy victories provide comfort that god is on their side, not on the side of those overtaken. Those converted, forced or otherwise, are restrained within the fences of their newly assigned ideology and told that leaving would have them facing the death penalty. Time passes, generations grow up within the boundaries, a culture is established and the ideological boundaries of Muhammad’s founded religion, Islam, grows at the expense of much blood and thousands of lives. Laws are imposed on those made captive by their captors. God’s laws are superseded by man’s laws and then imposed as a Theocracy. Flashbacks to Muhammad are frequent with actions he would do in given situations put on the screen and considered the standard for the actions of those to follow in leadership positions. The example of the mortal self-proclaimed prophet overshadows what God would do, as a visual can be used.
The smoke of constant battles rises over the landscape of the northern African coast, the Levant and to the East. The body of water known as the Persian Gulf, or the Arabian Gulf, becomes the symbol of differences among the people, their thinking, their interpretation and their desperate need to be the more superior. Over time the expansion bogs down on the border of Vienna and Islam languishes contained for hundreds of years upon the same land. The central theme of Islam other than ‘All for Allah’ is confused and confusing as scholar after scholar argue with each other. A multitude of screenwriters enter their manuscript and the decision is made to create a mosaic of them all.
Christian’s Movie Based on The Bible
Many Christian movies have already been written – The Bible, Noah, The Passion, Jesus, Ben Hur, the Ten Commandments and so many more. History is filled with source material, factual history that make many movies possible. In each film there is truth to be shared; truth to be told. God does not deceive. Jesus saves. Man confronts God and is condemned for betraying Him or blaspheming Him. The wrath of God is made clear, his abilities in the covenant of the Old Testament, a lead in to the next Act, if the Old Testament is Act I. The New Testament is Act II and wars are no more. The stories tell of Love, for God and for one another, for neighbor, family, friend and foe. We see the progression of life with God and learn from each chapter how to live in obedience to Him. We distinguish God’s laws and man’s laws; they are not the same. How a godly person lives is no different in a Theocratic or Secular society, but there is no need for a Theocracy, as man is never called upon to replace God in making judgment. Judgment comes through a loud voice heard from the heavens and from blasts of thunder, light, volcanic action and earthquakes when His demands are made known.
Earth is but a short-term stay for those so privileged, yet it is also the testing ground for hearts for God, for those who come to know Him, love Him and believe in His Saving Grace through His incarnation, life, death on our planet, and His ascension from our planet. The Return to The Celestial City may be a title in the future.
There is no fear sharing an image of God. It may not be right, but it is not wrong either in that it shows respect, reverence for the image of God made manifest in man. Why not show pictures, real or imagined, of those you love. What is there to hide.
At The End whose world prevails; whose movie will we have been watching; what kingdom exists for eternity? Who is God? I am a Trinitarian – a convicted believer in One God whose attributes provide the assurance of a relationship with Him and a reminder within believers that they are in good company. Who will live in Hell and who will be with Him forevermore? There is an answer. For me it is the Christian movie, as which other film could be called Assured Salvation. The sequel, from the lens through which I see, will have the suffering servant, Jesus, as savior and as the advocate for those who found hope and joy in living a life on earth as purposed by God.
Grace and Peace.