Chapter 16 : Spreading the sword

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Jesus leading the charge (based on: Battle of Poitiers, Charles de Steuben)

 

(Matthew 10:1 -23)

The next morning Jesus counted his followers and found that they were few.

He went back to his tent in a bad mood and he called in his twelve disciples and said:

“Our numbers are growing too slowly. This way we will never bring our conquest… ahum, I mean “message of salvation” to all the peoples in the world. From now on you will all travel and seek out the infidels and tell them to join our ranks, or pay us tribute8.

And one of the disciples asked:

“But what if they disobey us, o Lord?”

And Jesus responded: “Then may God, praise be upon him, grant you the strength to fight them. And fight them until their disbelief is no more, and religion be only for God. But if they desist, then let there be no hostility except against wrong-doers.103

And he gave them authority over unclean spirits, so as to cast them out, and to heal every sickness and every disease (with camel urine!158).

Twelve apostles Jesus sent out and he ordered them, saying, “Go wherever you can achieve victory. Go the Gentiles, the Samaritans, the house of Israel: it does not matter. Conquer them all!”

“And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ And if you have to do battle with the infidels and you find yourselves victorious, then help yourselves to their gold and silver 9, their wives and their slaves . For the worker is worthy of his nourishment. And as you enter into a house, salute it. And if the house indeed is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, then let there be no peace until the inhabitants have submitted to our will.103

And whoever will not receive you, nor hear your words, while departing that house or that city, shake off the dust of your feet. Truly I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrha in the day of judgement, than for that city, for we will soon return there with a mighty host and destroy every building and kill every unbeliever we may find.

“See, I am sending you out as sheep among wolves wolves among sheep. Be therefore as wise as serpents, and pretend to be innocent as doves. But beware of men, for they will deliver you up to the councils, and they will scourge you in their synagogues. But when they deliver you up, do not be anxious how or what you should say. You must lie if it is necessary to protect yourself, and deny that you are a Christian. 16

But remember, this is only to fool the unbelievers. And if some of you will lose their faith and denounce me, then know that their lives are forfeit and you should punish them108. A brother should deliver up a brother to death if he became an apostate, and a father a child. And children should rise up against parents, and condemn them to death if they dare to leave the ranks of the faithful. And you will be hated by all men because of me, but he who endures to the end, he will be saved.

But when they persecute you in this city, flee to the other, for truly I say to you, you will not have completed the cities of Israel till the Son of Man comes with his army to conquer all the lands of the infidels and reign over the whole world.

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Christian Coptic Priest Father Samuel stands inside the St. Mousa church in Minya, Egypt, after followers of the Updated Gospel helped redecorate it as a sign of affection (2015).

 

 

Comments:

In the Gospel, Jesus sends his disciples to teach a message of peace throughout the land: as ‘sheep among wolves’. In the Quran and Hadiths, Muhammad sends his soldiers to raid and plunder. More like wolves among sheep, that is.

The turning point for Islam came after 13 years of preaching. Muhammad realised he had only attracted a handful of followers in that time, so he changed his approach drastically. During the last ten years he organised military campaigns and forced the surrounding tribes into submission at the point of a sword. Apostasy became punishable by death (and according to polls many European muslims still agree with this).177

His Quranic verses and speeches changed their tone around this time too: the later verses and Hadiths sanction war, pillaging and the rape of female slaves. We can imagine his movement started attracting a lot of violent young men which made his armies even more powerful. This recruitment tool is still in use nowadays by the “Islamic State” and other terror groups (Hamas, Boko Haram, …) ).

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