Gujranwala. October 16. (CNI) Rt. Rev. Dr. Major (Retired) Timotheus Nasir, Bishop of Siloam Biblical Christian Churches of Pakistan, rejected the very idea of any sort of dialogue between Christianity and Islam for Peace and Harmony between the two
Speaking to Mr. Martin Novak, Correspondent of a Check Republic daily in Gujranwala, Pakistan, the bishop expressed his concern that the “Christian” Interfaith Dialogue Activists might have to abandon or compromise their Christian faith in order to achieve “Peace and Harmony” between the two religions. Explaining his point of views, Bishop Nasir said, that the very meanings of the word “dialogue” is a conversation between two persons or groups having totally different opinion or point of view on the subject or topic of dialogue. To reach an acceptable conclusion, one or both the persons and groups have to compromise on their point of view. A dialogue between Christianity and Islam can only reap a result if both Christians and Muslims decide to give up their basic religious belief. Christians and Muslims after accepting suggested changes in their faith could reach to an acceptable conclusion of the “Interfaith Dialogue”. He further added that some Christians might give in yet no Muslim will give up his/her faith. We can talk on peaceful co-existence and live together in Peace and Harmony, according to terms and conditions laid down by our Muslim friends and in Pakistan; we have this kind of “Peace and Harmony”. What so far has been achieved by the Interfaith Dialogue Activists in recent dialogue between the two religions has revealed that the Christians are giving in yet Muslims are not giving up, he added. He reminded the instructions of Pope John Paul II; Christians observed the “Fast” of the last Friday of Ramadan, December the 14th 2001. The Roman Catholic Church in Pakistan invited Muslims to their churches for “Iftar” (breaking the fast of the day). Muslims offered their prayers (the Maghrab or Sun Set Prayer) in Christian worship places. Yet again in January 2002 the Pope invited religious leaders of all faiths to worship and pray together in Church in Assisi. The whole world witnessed the defilement of the House of God by praying and worshiping God with other “gods”. In response to this un-Godly act of the Pope, only one Muslim leader, Dr. Tahir Ul Qadri (a bitter critic of Christianity) invited Christians to his mosque for “Iftar”. The motives of Dr. Qadri were not the he developed love for Christians, he needed the “Christian Votes” of his constituency in October 2002 general elections. His Islamic political party won just “one” seat in National assembly with the help of the Christian voters in his constituency. No political party gave ticket to a Christian candidate to contest general elections in October 2002 on party bases. The bitter truth is that no political party could afford to lose a seat by giving party ticket to a Christian candidate as no Muslim will vote for a Christian candidate if they have a choice to vote for a Muslim candidate. Coming back to “Interfaith Dialogue for Peace and Harmony” between Christianity and Islam, Bishop Nasir once again reiterated that there is no common ground between Christianity and Islam when it comes to the basic ingredients or doctrines of the two faiths. Neither Christians should nor any Muslims would agree to give up the very basic tenants of their faith. He further added that no Muslim in the world would cut down the number of daily prayers (from Five to Four or less). No Muslim would give up fasting, paying of alms, the Annual Pilgrimage or/and Jihad (Holy War). No Muslim will accept the “Divinity” of Lord Jesus Christ, His Crucifixion and death for the sins of all mankind. No Muslim has ever given or will give reverence to the Holy Bible or preference over Koran. Even after total peace and stability is achieved in Iraq and Afghanistan (especially) Christianity will remain “banned” in both countries. Where as the countries, that once were known as Christian countries are flooded with Muslim evangelists from all over the Muslim world. The “Christian” Interfaith Dialogue could not notice this huge and visible contrast for Peace and Harmony. On much talked Islamic tolerance, Bishop Nasir suggested a “thumb rule”. He said, “Ask a very friendly, moderate and tolerant Muslim family the hand of their daughter for your Christian son. If they agree, I shall work diligently for the cause of “Interfaith Peace and Harmony and Dialogue”. But it will not happen, they will certainly refuse”. They will even break off all friendly relationship with you and become very aggressive against you”.
The final goal of both Christianity and Islam is to win more and more people for their faith. Christianity never tried to achieve this goal by force but through evangelism. On contrary, Islam never let go an opportunity to use force (sword). Much spoken and written word “Crusades” were not to gain an upper hand on Islam or to convert Muslims to Christianity by force but to retrieve the Holy places of the Christian world that Muslims took by sword. Likewise the aim of European or American Colonial rule in various parts of the world was not to spread or preach Christianity. Their aim was economical gains and control over the existing resources of a particular country at that particular time. In India and what is Pakistan today, the British Colonial Rulers did not come to preach and establish Christianity. In this part of the world Christianity today exists through the efforts of Missionaries from America and Europe. If the aim of British Colonial Rulers had been to preach Christianity, the Indian sub-continent would have been a “Christian India”. Though they did not stop Missionaries to preach Christianity and establish Christian institutions and churches, they never cared for or helped the Christian converts. They made many Muslims, Hindus and Sikhs, “big land lords” but ignored newly converted Christians mercilessly. Therefore any one who claims that Christianity flourished under Colonial Rule in any part of the world is grossly wrong. On the other hand, the basic concept of Islam is to gain total supremacy in the world. A Muslim can live in only two types of places. One “Dar-Ul-Islam” and “Dar-Ul-Harab”. “Dar –Ul-Islam means a place or country which is ruled by Muslims under Islamic laws. “Dar-UL-Harab” means a place or country that is not ruled by Muslims. The word “Harab” means “war” that was named “struggle” before 9th September 2001. Any or all Muslims living in “Dar-UL-Harab” must struggle to make “Dar-UL-Harab”, “Dar-UL-Islam” and enforce Islamic laws once they make Dar-UL-Harab”, “Dar-UL-Islam. It starts with migration from “Dar-Ul-Islam” to “Dar-Ul-Harab”. Establish trade or trade relations with non-Islamic country. Polygamy and multiplication (For example, a Christian for instant will have four children from “one wife” at the same time a Muslim who is allowed to have “four wives” with this proportion can have Sixteen children from “four wives”. In one generation the ratio of increase in Muslim population is three times more than a Christian family. Please remember Osama Bin Laden has sixty odd brothers and sisters.) And finally “Jihad” or the Holy War at an appropriate time! I do not need to explain “Jihad” the world today knows is too well, Bishop Nasir added. When asked, if he can foresee a total collapse of Christianity in next fifty to one hundred years? Bishop Nasir smiled and said firmly “No” Christianity has always been under threat and persecution from with in and from out side, yet it prevailed. Christianity has never failed and it will not fail. From day one, evil forces are trying to destroy or finish Christianity, yet it remains a dominant and the only way to eternal life. It survived under Jewish, Roman, Islamic and internal oppression and persecution, yet it not only survived but flourished by the Grace of Lord Jesus Christ. Who can destroy the Body of Christ? Bishop Nasir asked calmly!
On the present global church situation Bishop Nasir, yes their “weeds” or “tares” among the “wheat”, it has grown with the “wheat”. It will keep growing until the harvest. But the “weeds” or “tares” will be reaped first, bound and burned and “wheat” will be taken to His “Barn”.