Oh so tolerant Catholics

Our good Catholic friend, Archbishop of Sydney, Cardinal George Pell, is at it once again and publicly declaring that “Islam is more warlike than Christianity” and that “the Koran is riddled with invocations to violence”.

To put things into context, today I have undertaken the “5 minute challenge”, where I search the Bible for 5 minutes to see what I can come up with. Here’s what I found…

  • Numbers 25:17
    “Treat the Midianites as enemies and kill them”
  • Exodus 32:12
    The LORD said to Moses, “Take all the leaders of these people, kill them and expose them in broad daylight before the LORD, so that the LORD’s fierce anger may turn away from Israel.”
  • Numbers 14:12
    I will strike them down with a plague and destroy them, but I will make you into a nation greater and stronger than they.”
  • Deuteronomy 7:2
    and when the LORD your God has delivered them over to you and you have defeated them, then you must destroy them totally. Make no treaty with them, and show them no mercy.
  • Joshua 11:20
    For it was the LORD himself who hardened their hearts to wage war against Israel, so that he might destroy them totally, exterminating them without mercy, as the LORD had commanded Moses.
  • Jeremiah 14:12
    Although they fast, I will not listen to their cry; though they offer burnt offerings and grain offerings, I will not accept them. Instead, I will destroy them with the sword, famine and plague.”
  • Lamentations 3:66
    Pursue them in anger and destroy them from under the heavens of the LORD.
  • Leviticus 20:15
    ” ‘If a man has sexual relations with an animal, he must be put to death, and you must kill the animal.

Yep, I agree Dr. Pell, Christianity is definately a tolerant religion and not in the slightest “riddled with invocations to violence”. How do I convert?

9 thoughts on “Oh so tolerant Catholics”

  1. I don’t understand your comparison. Surely Pell is saying that the Qu’ran has invocations to physical violence that are intended to be followed by its adherents of all times, including specifically today. (I don’t think we would have much trouble in coming up with contemporary examples where many people seem to be acting in exactly those ways.) So, if you want to compare that to the Bible, then you have to come up with much more than just some Biblical references back to historical events of the past. You have to show that there are clear Biblical calls for physical violence that are intended to apply to all times. Else it’s apples and oranges.

  2. I don’t quite follow Paul’s comments. Certainly a LORD who commanded his followers to extinguish their opponents a few thousand years ago would do the same today. In history, Islam has generally been more tolerant to Jews and Christians than vice versa (although the record is not unblemished). Islamic fundamentalism today is to a large degree a reaction to fundamentalist Christianity and its aggressive politics. Tolerance was advocated by Mohammed in the following Sure from the Koran (I apologize for the bad translation, not from Arabic):

    Sure 109

    Say: Oh you infidels
    I do not serve whom you serve
    And you are not servants of whom I serve
    And I am not servant of whom you serve
    And you are not servants of whom I serve
    Your belief to you and my belief to me

    (Is there an equivalent statement in the Bible?).

  3. Note that the LORD says that the proper treatment of enemies is to kill them. The LORD also preached loving your enemies. This implies killing someone is an expression of love.

  4. You are making the mistake of looking in the Old Testament for examples of Christian Faith. (That is understandable if you aren’t familiar with the Bible.) Jesus, who showed up in the 2nd Half, the New Testament, changed a few things. Among them, He taught about love, grace, compassion, and forgiveness. The Church is full of sins, True CHRISTIANITY, is not.

  5. I’m quite aware that the primary basis of Christian faith is the New Testament as opposed to the Old Testament. However, this does not discount the fact that Christians also accepts the Old Testament as the word of God. Do Christians believe in creationism? Yes? Why? Because that’s what’s written in Genesis.

    I don’t in any way want to undermine true Christian teachings, as taught by Jesus. However, contemporary Christian theology encompasses far more than just the teachings of Jesus Christ and therefore needs to be judged on that basis.

  6. This is pure rubbish, flame bait, etc. The first error is that Catholicism is not Christianity. Second, the Catholic religion considers the New Testament to be more authoritative source of information on the teachings of God.

    I can easily find a fundamental principle in Islamic religion which calls for violence against others (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jihad). Since you picked Catholicism to begin with, can you find an analog in current Catholic dogma? Can you find an analog in Protestantism/Baptist/Presbyterian/etc? No –

    You may want to point back to the crusades and declare, “Ah-ha! See! The Catholics are no better! Look at the atrocities they committed!” Of course , that argument is wrought with folly. The institution of the Catholic Church is not the same as Catholicism. Second, the last crusades ended somewhere in the early 1600’s, and the Catholic Chuch and its constituents have actually evolved in both mindset and action since those times. The same cannot be said for Islam.

    Regardless, one only needs to look at the religious followers today to determine which group exhibits more outward violence. Yassir? Yessir!

  7. Klaus, there is something in the Bible that parallels what you quoted from the Koran, but it’s something I hear and see mentioned so few by christians that I feel I MUST quote it here. I have no idea why Christians ignore this one, but that’s them and I’m not them. I just like to quote their own holy book when they talk down to me for not following a religion I was born into. Moving on to the quote:

    “Judge not, and ye shall not be judged: condemn not, and ye shall not be condemned: forgive, and ye shall be forgiven:”
    Luke 6:37

    (taken exactly as copied and pasted from biblegateway.com, the first site i happened upon when typing “online bible” in google and searching the king james version)

  8. I can see the argument here: The Christians claim that Jesus “changed” the ways of God’s people to love rather than OT violence. True, but Christians killed in God’s name anyway in earlier centuries. Christans have only become more civilized recently, not because of the Bible, but because of the societies in which they live. The only difference between Christianity and Islam is that most of the societies where Islam predominates are backwards. As they become more progressive, Islam will follow suite.



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