Does Islam condone violence if God’s Prophet (e.g., Muhammad or Jesus) is insulted?
I seek refuge in God, from Satan the rejected. In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful
I will be using Dr. Rashad Khalifa’s Authorized English Version of the Quran.
God tells us that we do not make distinctions among God’s messengers. Would the reactions be as strong if say the prophet Moses was insulted? Or John?
No Distinction Among God's Messengers [2:136] Say, "We believe in GOD, and in what was sent down to us, and in what was sent down to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the Patriarchs; and in what was given to Moses and Jesus, and all the prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction among any of them. To Him alone we are submitters."
Does it sadden us when people we respect or care about are insulted? Even if someone insults God, God tells us to disregard such a person. How much greater is God than any human messenger? God gives people the freedom to wrong their souls. Even Satan is allowed to speak and whisper. Our job is to seek refuge in God and to disregard lies and insults, no matter how much we may want to respond in anger.
[7:180] To GOD belongs the most beautiful names; call upon Him therewith, and DISREGARD those who distort His names. They will be requited for their sins.
Quran does not tell us to kill those who insult God or any of His messengers. Instead, it says: [Quran 25:63] The worshipers of the Most Gracious are those who TREAD the earth gently, and when the IGNORANT speak to them, they only utter peace. [Quran 33:48] Do not obey the disbelievers and the hypocrites, DISREGARD their INSULTS, and put your trust in GOD; GOD suffices as an advocate.
It is but natural that if we are on the side of God, we are likely to be insulted.
The Inevitable Test* [3:186] You will certainly be tested, through your money and your lives, and you will hear from those who received the scripture, and from the idol worshipers, A LOT OF INSULT. If you steadfastly persevere and lead a righteous life, this will prove the strength of your faith.
- 3:186 After passing the admission tests, the proven worshipers of God ALONE enjoy a perfect life, now and forever. See 10:62, 24:55, and 29:2-3.
Responding insult with an insult is never the answer, in fact Quran consistently advocates countering evil with good.
Twice the Reward for Christians & Jews Who Recognize the Truth [28:54] To these we grant twice the reward, because they steadfastly persevere. They COUNTER EVIL WORKS WITH GOOD WORKS, and from our provisions to them, they give.
If terrorists applied their own justice system to themselves—they would kill their leaders for accepting Hadith: We know the fabricators of Hadith & Sunna: also insult the prophet by portraying him as a cruel, vicious and sometimes crazy man. God says “disregard them and their fabrications”. Hadith & Sunna: Fabrications by the Prophet's Enemies [6:112] We have permitted the enemies of every prophet―human and jinn devils―to inspire in each other fancy words, in order to deceive. Had your Lord willed, they would not have done it. You shall DISREGARD them and their fabrications. [7:199] You shall resort to pardon, ADVOCATE TOLERANCE, AND DISREGARD the ignorant. The problem is: such people seek attention. Disregarding them is in fact the best solution. The movie—is poorly made, and on its own merits would go nowhere. But for the terrorist actions, it would have its 5 minutes of fame and be forgotten.
Terrorism only feeds into the claims of those who hate God’s religion and would like it to be portrayed as evil. God tells us in Quran that life is sacred. The laws for capital punishment are very specific and clear. Here, there was a movie—not a killing. So there’s no equation of capital-punishment as justice even for the film-maker himself. And of course—the persons targeted in Africa were thousands of miles away from the ignorant movie-maker and probably hadn’t even heard of the film. Further, Quran condemns aggression of any kind. Rules of War*
[2:190] You may fight in the cause of GOD against those who attack you, but do not aggress. GOD does not LOVE the aggressors. Which mold do the terrorists who burnt the embassy and killed its occupants fall into? If we asked them to observe the command of resorting to patience and disregarding those who insult God or His messengers, would they obey God’s commandments?
Appearances May Be Deceiving [2:204] Among the people, one may impress you with his utterances concerning this life, and may even call upon GOD to witness his innermost thoughts, while he is a most ardent opponent.
[2:205] As soon as he leaves, he roams the earth corruptingly, DESTROYING PROPERTIES and LIVES. GOD does not love corruption. [2:206] When he is told, "Observe GOD," he becomes arrogantly indignant. Consequently, his only destiny is Hell; what a miserable abode.