(Reuters) – Religion News Service | By Lauren Markoe
Over 120 Islamic scholars from around the world, many of them leading Muslim voices in their own countries, have issued an open letter denouncing Islamic State militants and refuting their religious arguments. … But the Muslim leaders who endorsed Wednesday’s letter called it an unprecedented refutation of the Islamic State ideology from a collaboration of religious scholars. It is addressed to the group’s self-anointed leader, Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi, and “the fighters and followers of the self-declared ‘Islamic State.’” An English version of the executive summary of the open letter is here. The full letter is here.
This is not the first time Muslims leaders have made such a declaration, In a lead story (July 7, 2014), Al Jazeera reported that Muslim leaders around the world were rejecting the recently declared Islamic State and its self-declared caliph, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Yusuf al-Qaradawi, an Egyptian Islamic Theologian based in Qatar, declared the Islamic State “void” according to the Islamic law. Especially pertinent was the statement of another scholar of Islam, Abu Muhammad al-Maqdisi, a one-time supporter of al-Qaeda affiliate, al-Nusra Front. He declared fighters associated with the Islamic State as “deviants.” In a study carried out by the Combating Terrorism Center of the United States Military Academy, it was concluded that Maqdisi “is the most influential living Jihadi Theorist” and that “by all measures, Maqdisi is the key contemporary ideologue in the Jihadi intellectual universe.”1
It seems that key mainstream Muslim leaders and scholars are taking a stand not on the issue of Islam as a caliphate that will one day encompass the whole world, but the level and type of violence being inflicted by the Islamic State on its prisoners and victims. Nevertheless, in spite of the many voices speaking against the Islamic State and its version of the Qur’an and writings, the point must be made — the statements will have little impact on the followers of the Islamic State. They consider such voices liberals who have misinterpreted the Qur’an. In fact, that is what the Islamic State is — a Salafi-jihadist organization that stands for the “path” of Muhammad and his companions in the earliest days of Islam. Those days were the days of the Sword, the days when Muhammad earned his nickname, the “prophet of the sword.”
What will decide the fate of the Islamic State? God will. The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob made manifest in the only Begotten Son, the Savior of the world. He will decide what will happen with America’s bombs. Will they cut off the head of the serpent and render him lifeless? Or is this the time prophesied by God to bring in the tribulation ? The question is whether the Islamic State is intended in this passage:
Revelation 13:5-8 (NASB) There was given to him a mouth speaking arrogant words and blasphemies, and authority to act for forty-two months was given to him. 6 And he opened his mouth in blasphemies against God, to blaspheme His name and His tabernacle, that is, those who dwell in heaven. 7 It was also given to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them, and authority over every tribe and people and tongue and nation was given to him. 8 All who dwell on the earth will worship him, everyone whose name has not been written from the foundation of the world in the book of life of the Lamb who has been slain.
If the Islamic State is the hand of the beast in the end-of-days, things will only get worse. The world will have a second plague it must deal with — the first, of course, Ebola. I suppose it depends where you get your mail which will be considered the most evil of satan.
Jesus come quickly.
JackFootnotes to post: