Thursday, October 16, 2008

Christian-Muslim statement on the global financial crisis

The Common Word group of Islamic scholars have met with sundry Christian theologians in Cambridge and London, and they have issued a joint declaration on the credit crunch.

Sadly, it did not talk of the love of Mammon being the root of all evil, but simply noted that:

We live in an increasingly global world that brings with it increased interdependence. The closer we are drawn together by this globalisation and interdependence, the more urgent is the need to understand and respect one another in order to find a way out of our troubles. Meeting at a time of great turbulence in the world financial system our hearts go out to the many people throughout the world whose lives and livelihood are affected by the current crisis. When a crisis of this magnitude occurs, we are all tempted to think solely of ourselves and our families and ignore the treatment of minorities and the less fortunate. In this conference we are celebrating the shared values of love of God and love of neighbour, the basis of A Common Word, whilst reflecting self-critically on how often we fall short of these standards. We believe that the divine commandment to love our neighbour should prompt all people to act with compassion towards others, to fulfil their duty of helping to alleviate misery and hardship. It is out of an understanding of shared values that we urge world leaders and our faithful everywhere to act together to ensure that the burden of this financial crisis, and also the global environmental crisis, does not fall unevenly on the weak and the poor. We must seize the opportunity for implementing a more equitable global economic system that also respects our role as stewards of the earth’s resources.

This could, of course, be a Jewish-Christian-Muslim-Hindu-Sikh-Buddhist-Jedi Knight statement, and it is all very pleasant indeed. Words are nice, especially the word nice, but they do not feed the starving, house the homeless, heal the depressed, of provide jobs for the unemployed. And where is there any mention of prayer?

It is one thing to talk of respect and understanding on a human level, for this is the very nexus of loving one’s neighbour. But talking of the ‘shared values of love of God and love of neighbour’ is precisely the sort of pseudo-theological multi-faith pap which confuses the faithful and leads people astray. Jesus defined one’s neighbour as everyone, including our enemies. The Qur’an makes it clear that the Muslim’s neighbours are ranked, with the kuffar treated somewhat differently from the ummah. The God of the Christians is not the God of the Muslims. One is YHWH, the other is Allah; one is immanent, the other is aloof; one has revealed himself, the other cannot be revealed; one is Father, the other is unknown and unknowable; one became man and dwelt among us; the other cannot condescend; one is mutable and responsive, the other is immutable and immovable; one is agape, the other is more judgemental; one is Trinity in unity, the other is unity; one died for us that we may be redeemed, the other refutes that Jesus died.

But as long as we can all agree that God is the omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent transcendent creator, there can be a joint strategy for dealing with global financial meltdown.

Isn’t that so very heartening?

10 Comments:

OpenID berenike said...

Cardinal Van Thuan Observatory:

http://www.vanthuanobservatory.org/p_en/news.php?id_news=618

16 October 2008 at 10:32  
Anonymous Rebel Saint said...

"One is YHWH, the other is Allah; one is immanent, the other is aloof; one has revealed himself, the other cannot be revealed; one is Father, the other is unknown and unknowable; one became man and dwelt among us; the other cannot condescend; one is mutable and responsive, the other is immutable and immovable; one is agape, the other is more judgemental; one is Trinity in unity, the other is unity; one died for us that we may be redeemed, the other refutes that Jesus died.

And of course, one is real the other is counterfeit.

16 October 2008 at 11:26  
Anonymous V said...

rebelsaint,

That's not a very nice way to talk about Christianity. It's just as valid as any other religion.

16 October 2008 at 12:05  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's not a very nice way to talk about Christianity. It's just as valid as any other religion.

Fairs, fair, they are all equal fantasies, though they seem to cater to varying levels of credulity depending on which part of the world you look at.

16 October 2008 at 12:50  
Blogger Dave said...

Your Grace,
Very well put. As a somewhat jaded former evangelical Christian, I find the statement falls somewhat short of what i've come to expect from Christians.
My experience is that when asked if they would do something, many Christians reply with a "I'll pray about it" which is shorthand for "No. I can't be bothered but I'll say something that sounds good."
As you so rightly remark, the concept of prayer has been omitted, so not only are they not going to do anything, they are not even offering the "I'll pray about it" line.
Duh.

16 October 2008 at 13:12  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some readers may well believe that religions are all equal fantasies, but of the two religions His Grace compares:
one benefits the world, the other damages it.
the founder of one was a courageous yet peaceful figure, the founder of the other was violent and a paedophile.

16 October 2008 at 17:14  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Our God lives and still speaks today. If only we'd listen.

http://www.moriel.org/articles/notice_board/to_the_church_and_nation_of_britain.htm

16 October 2008 at 18:06  
Anonymous len said...

I find it interesting that every religion thinks it is right!
How do you know if you have got the right one?
Prophesy!.
God supplies evidence of his word by prophesy.

Jesus Christ fufilled hundreds of prophesies only he could have fufilled. the evidence is there for all to read and examine.

16 October 2008 at 19:40  
Anonymous no nonny said...

They argue on "the basis of A Common Word," ??? So - as long as they're in our country - why aren't the Moslems speaking our language, using the Bible, and practicing Christianity?

So "our faithful" must "ensure that the burden of this financial crisis, and also the global environmental crisis, does not fall unevenly on the weak and the poor." .....Patronising of the invaders - assuming that we are among "their faithful." And aren't the hapless 'weak and the poor' on an uneven playing field regardless of the crunch? And isn't a great part of that uneven ground in Moslem countries? So....

They call for "a more equitable global economic system that also respects our role as stewards of the earth’s resources." What a beauty! So where are the resources they're talking about? So why are the boyos here, and talking about it instead of at home (where all the money is) doing it?

But wait...is that what they're doing? Helping the euros to change our system - via the crunch?

Before they qualify to issue statements from Cambridge about 'caritas' - maybe they should be required to pass rigorous courses in English Bible Study...and Chaucer!

17 October 2008 at 01:19  
Anonymous Convinced Anglican said...

no nonny

Brilliant. All this Allah 'equality' is so depressing. It truly is the slippery slope. Humour helps:

"Before they qualify to issue statements from Cambridge about 'caritas' - maybe they should be required to pass rigorous courses in English Bible Study...and Chaucer!"

Superb. Make it a qualification for entry!

20 October 2008 at 00:03  

Post a Comment

<< Home

Newer›  ‹Older