Good Americans?

I received this piece in the mail recently:

CAN A MUSLIM BE A GOOD AMERICAN ?
Theologically – no. Because his allegiance is to Allah, the moon god of Arabia.
Religiously – no. Because no other religion is accepted by his Allah except Islam (Quran, 2:256)
Scripturally – no. Because his allegiance is to the five pillars of Islam and the Quran (Koran).
Geographically – no. Because his allegiance is to Mecca, to which he turns in prayer five times a day.
Socially – no. Because his allegiance to Islam forbids him to make friends with Christians or Jews.
Politically – no. Because he must submit to the mullah (spiritual leaders), who teach annihilation of Israel and Destruction of America, the great Satan.
Domestically – no. Because he is instructed to marry four women and beat and scourge his wife when she disobeys him (Quran 4:34).
Intellectually – no. Because he cannot accept the American Constitution since it is based on Biblical principles and he believes the Bible to be corrupt.
Philosophically – no. Because Islam, Muhammad, and the Quran do not allow freedom of religion and expression. Democracy and Islam cannot co-exist. Every Muslim government is either dictatorial or autocratic.
Spiritually – no. Because when we declare “one nation under God,” the Christian’s God is loving and kind, while Allah is NEVER referred to as heavenly father, nor is he ever called love in The Quran’s 99 excellent names.
Sharia (Islamic Law) – no. The Sharia should be opposed for its imposition of theocracy over democracy, its abuse of human rights, its institutionalized discrimination, its denial of human dignity and individual autonomy, its punishment of alternative lifestyle choices, and for the severity of its punishments.
Therefore after much study and deliberation….perhaps we should be very suspicious of ALL MUSLIMS in this country. They obviously cannot be both”good” Muslims and good Americans.
Call it what you wish….it’s still the truth.

Since I’m not a Muslim, I don’t know how to handle all these charges. As a Christian, however, I’ve often wondered if I can be a good American. If the standards asked of Muslims in this piece are asked of me, I think I’d fail for sure.

Theologically? My primary allegiance is to Jesus and his kingdom. I’d like to see America and its people (us) do well, but my standards for what I count as “doing well” are based on the values of the Kingdom of God.

Religiously? Well, I know that in most Muslim countries non-Muslims are at best second class citizens. But just as many Muslims believe Islam is true (and other religions are not), I think Christianity best expresses the truth about God. I guess I’m a bad American too.

Scripturally? While in some ways the Quran functions in Muslim theology in a way analogous to the way Jesus functions in Christian theology, I understand what it is to have allegiance to the word of God.

Geographically? Well, Islam seems to have a geographic basis that is unlike what I find in Christian theology. I do see many American Christians that seem to have a similar attachment to Israel – or perhaps practice a version of British Israelism and treat America as the center of God’s world. As I read the New Testament, I find it all hogwash.

Socially? I’ve seen some passages in the bible that seem to indicate that we should have nothing to do with unbelievers (2 Cor. 6) – I’ve even known a few separatists over the years. Are these Christians bad Americans too? On the other side, I have made friends with Muslims before. I had no indication they were faking it or would take themselves to be unfaithful to their religion.

Politically? It’s hard to find any politicians to be excited about. As for what the Mullahs say, whoever wrote this piece is very deluded about the unity of their message. Sure, some Mullahs say evil things. Many others don’t.

Domestically? I don’t care for much of what I’ve heard of the Muslim teaching and practice regarding marriage & family. But of the Muslims I’ve met in America, I don’t know any that act like they need 4 wives. All the ones I’ve known are monogamous. And what’s the American way? Serial polygamy? Promiscuity? I don’t find either option particularly Christian.

Intellectually? Hmmm. Why the original author links this to the constitution, I’m not sure. I wonder which biblical principles in the constitutions he’s thinking of. I know many (most?) Muslims would not reject all biblical principles, since parallels can be found in thr Quran. While the believe the bible is corrupted, they don’t believe everything in it is wrong. Also, as a Christian, my allegiance is to the Kingdom of God before it is to the US Constitution. Can I fault a Muslim for have another allegiance?

Philosophically? Hmmm again. Is democracy compatible with Islam? We don’t know yet. There are folks who say it can’t happen. In the past there were folks who thought Christianity was incompatible with democracy. After a few centuries maybe we’ll know. Even so, however much I like democracy – and I (usually) do – it does not garner my highest allegiance.

Spiritually? So Americans have to think God is loving? I don’t remember reading that in the Constitution. Sure, it might be hidden somewhere in the volumes and volumes of laws that have come out since. But I have my doubts. I also doubt that all Muslims are convinced that God is not loving.

Sharia? I’m not a fan of what I’ve heard of Sharia law. I’ve heard too many stories of Christians suffering because of it. I don’t want to live under it. But I’m afraid I think it would be a good thing if Americans lived under more Christian morality. So if I judge the Muslims to be bad Americans, I guess I’d have to put myself in the same place.

So where do we end up? Can only nation worshipping bible thumpers be good Americans? Not by my standards. Can a Muslim – a Christian – a Jew – an atheist – be a good American? As far as I can tell. But by my standards being a good American isn’t the most important thing in the light of eternity. It’s not a bad thing, but it’s certainly not the best.

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5 Responses to Good Americans?

  1. guy says:

    well done, sir.

  2. Art says:

    Your ultimate point is very good and well-done. But much of the information about Muslims you received in the email is either taken out of context of is laughably incorrect.

  3. Thank you for your refreshing thoughts here. I get so many of these types of emails sent to me by my parishioners and it saddens me that all they can think about after reading this kind of garbage is hate. That is the devil at work. Sure there are Muslims out there that think in terms of hate. But if we’re going to guide our whole thoughts on the people based on them, then others should have their thoughts on Christianity based on the corrupted Church during the Inquistion or the KKK.

    Anyway, thanks for the piece. I may guide some of my own parishioners here at some point.

  4. John says:

    How should it be handled? Never believe anything in an e-mail forward. I’m so tired of people sending me these idiotic things.

  5. joan says:

    could you do a blog article about who or what sequimur is? a little about you? why “bandits no more”? ( it sounds familiar, but I don’t know where that quote might be from) some who have influenced your faith and faithwalk?
    thanks
    also, my sister converted to Bahia many years ago. That has definitely shaped my beliefs, especially since one reason she went looking for a spiritual home was the racism she saw in Christianity at that time.
    Mica 6:8 has helped me see (I think) the heart of the relationship.
    can we humbly accept God’s way?

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