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Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Islam And Suicide Bombers

How is it that Moslems willingly blow themselves up? Such a final act must have something to offer the perpetrator for it to be a viable decision. The promise is that the bomber will be automatically accepted into heaven. If this is the case than why don't all Moslems, or anyone else for that matter, run out right now and kill a bunch of people by blowing themselves, literally to Kingdom Come.

The key to understanding this activity is realizing that Islam teaches a merit based system of pleasing God. The Quran states:

Salvation in Islam

"Then when the Trumpet is blown, there will be no more relationships between them that Day, nor will one ask after another! Then those whose balance (of good deeds) is heavy,- they will be successful: But those whose balance is light, will be those who have lost their souls, in Hell will they abide." S. 23:101-103

"Those who leave their homes in the Cause of Allah, and are then slain or die,- on them will Allah bestow verily a goodly Provision. Truly Allah is He Who bestows the best provision. Verily He will admit them to a place with which they shall be well pleased: for Allah is All-Knowing, Most Forbearing." S. 22:58-59


So the sum of one's deeds or the loss of life for the cause of Islam will compel God to give the reward of heaven. Now when a person finds they are burdened with sin, or wrong deeds and can be convinced that the weight of them is greater than that of their good deeds, they find they are excluded from heaven. Here the solution to their predicament is in giving their life for the cause.
We had a parallel experience with the Roman Church. At the time of the crusades the concept of indulgences was used as a way for Christians to negate their record of sins and compel God to let them into heaven. The result in both cases is that people will willingly put their lives in danger for a free ticket to Paradise. Although the use of indulgences in Christianity is heretical, it is clearly taught is Islam. We know that people will give their fortunes in the hope of gaining God's blessing, it's not much of a stretch to get them to give their lives.

The sad fact is that God, who has everything and needs nothing, dispenses his blessings according to His pleasure, and His mercy according to His grace. One cannot place another in debt without providing something the other does not have. If we give our very lives we don't give God anything he doesn't already have. I must assume the unwillingness of the Moslem leaders to lead the suicide bombers by example is that they do not have much faith in the concept that the rewards of this world are inferior to the next. What a horrible betrayal to catch a person in sin and use their guilt and shame as a lever to have them give their life for one's own temporal ambitions

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