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‘He’s not the Messiah he’s just a very naughty Mohammed’

November 18, 2013

 

Excellent piece from Islam Watch that will interest those who wish to know more about the early encounters between Jews and Christians and Islam.

It seems that the idea of a new ‘prophet’ emerging from Arabia enthused the Jews of North Africa but when they found out just what the ideology of Islam was like, they quite rightly, rejected it.  As the piece said real prophets do not come armed with a sword or persuade by threat of violence.  As the Doctrina Jacobi says ‘there is no truth to be found in this so-called ‘prophet’ ‘

“Early non-Muslim writers on Islam

The earliest of all writings is the Doctrina Jacobi which dates to 634 A.D., a mere two years after Muhammad’s death. It recounts the excitement in the Jewish community of Ceasarea that news of the “appearance of the Prophet” produced. However when the eponymous Jacob meets someone who has actually encountered “the saracens”{3} he discovers that “He is false, for the prophets do not come armed with a sword {4} [and] there was no truth to be found in the so-called prophet, only the shedding of men’s blood.” What is clear is that “the Saracens” were pursuing a violent path   in Syria.

Sophronius, Patriarch of Jerusalem, writing 634-639 A.D. again recounts how the Saracens “ravage all with cruel and feral design, with impious and godless audacity [and how the Christians] are prevented from entering Bethlehem by way of the road. Unwillingly, indeed, contrary to our wishes, we are required to stay at home, not bound closely by bodily bonds, but bound by fear of the Saracens.” He goes on to lament “Why has there been so much destruction and plunder? Why are there incessant outpourings of human blood? Why have churches been pulled down? Why is the cross mocked?” and partially answers himself “Those God-fighters boast of prevailing over all, assiduously and unrestrainedly imitating their leader” Muhammad, whom Sophronius sees as being “the devil”.

Another anonymous writer of the mid. 630’s made a (now fragmentary) marginal note on a manuscript that “In January {the people of} Hims took the word for their lives and many villages were ravaged by the killings of {the Arabs of} Muhammad (Muhmd) and many people were slain and {taken} prisoner from Galilee as far as Beth. . . .”. This same fragment also links to the battle of Yarmuk (636 A.D.) in which the Muslims scored a stunning victory over Byzantine forces. A phrase that deserves elucidation is “took the word for their lives”, this phrase means that the people of Hims either accepted Islam or dhimmitude{5} for fear of their lives.

This battle is also described by Fredegar, a Frankish Chronicler (c.650s). His account parallels that of Sophronius, but he also describes the post-battle actions of “the Hagarenes, who are also called Saracens [then] proceeded, as was their habit, to lay waste the provinces of the empire that had fallen to them.”

Thomas the Presbyter (640 A.D.) records that “The Arabs climbed the mountain of Mardin and killed many monks there in [the monasteries of]Qedar and Bnata.”

Maximus the confessor (mid. 630’s) is so horrified by events that he writes “What is more terrible [than] to see a barbarous people of the desert overrunning another’s lands as though they were their own; to see civilization itself being ravaged by wild and untamed beasts whose form alone is human.”{6}”

Read the rest of this fascinating article at:  http://www.islam-watch.org/authors/165-jon-mc/1455-early-non-muslim-sources-concerning-the-advent-of-islam.html

This is good stuff and will help people understand the violent beginnings of Islam and may go someway to understanding why Islam was violent then and is violent now.

 

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