Friday, February 28, 2014
Christians: The World's Most Persecuted Group -Raymond Ibrahim
Why are Christians, as a new Pew report documents, the most persecuted religious group in the world? And why is their persecution occurring primarily throughout the Islamic world?
In the category on "Countries with Very High Government Restrictions on Religion," Pew lists 24 countries—20 of which are Islamic and precisely where the overwhelming majority of "the world's" Christians are actually being persecuted.
The reason for this ubiquitous phenomenon of Muslim persecution of Christians is threefold:
Christianity is the largest religion in the world. There are Christians practically everywhere around the globe, including in much of the Muslim world. Moreover, because much of the land that Islam seized was originally Christian—including the Middle East and North Africa, the region that is today known as the "Arab world"—Muslims everywhere are still confronted with vestiges of Christianity...
Christianity is a proselytizing faith that seeks to win over converts. No other major religion—including Buddhism, Hinduism, and Judaism—except Islam itself has this missionary aspect (these faiths tend to be coterminous with their respective ethnicities: Buddhists, Asians; Judaism, Jews; Hinduism, Hindus). Thus because Christianity is the only religion that is actively confronting Muslims with the truths of its own message, not only is it the primary religion to be accused of proselytizing but, by publicly uttering teachings that contradict Muhammad's, Christians are accused of blaspheming as well.
Christianity is the quintessential religion of martyrdom. Few other religions encourage their adherents to embrace death rather than recant. Conversely, Islam teaches Muslims to openly renounce their faith (taqiyya)—not just when their lives are threatened, but even as a stratagem of war—as long as they remain Muslim in their hearts.
To summarize, because of their sheer numbers around the globe, including the Muslim world, Christians are the most likely targets of Islamic intolerance; because sharing the Gospel, or "witnessing," is a dominant element of Christianity, Christians are most likely to fall afoul of Islam's blasphemy and proselytism laws, as even the barest pro-Christian talk is by necessity a challenge to the legitimacy of Islam; because most Muslims who apostatize to other religions convert to Christianity, it is as Christians that they suffer persecution; and because boldness in face of certain death—martyrdom, dying for the faith—is as old as Christianity itself, Christians are especially prone to defy Islam's anti-freedom laws, whether by openly proclaiming Christianity or by refusing to recant it, and so they die for it.
[Front Page Magazine]