Tuesday, March 29, 2016

In Lahore, Pakistan: Muslims Murder 70, Injure 300 Christians At Resurrection Celebration.

On Easter Sunday, a Taliban-linked group conducted a suicide bombing killing nearly 70 Christians and injured roughly 300. The explosion, which took place in Lahore, Pakistan, was over the religious celebration which Christians hold dear. The fact that Jesus Christ died was buried and rose from the dead, enrages [some] Muslim. In Pakistan, Christians consist of roughly 1.6% of the population and are often subjected to discrimination due to blasphemy laws which forbid insulting Islam; some hold Christians should convert or suffer persecution. Just last month, an Islamic extremist was executed for murdering a governor who voted against the blasphemy bill. The group who carried out the attack confirmed the terror was meant for Christians. Although some media outlets indicate Christians were targeted, many news outlets do not include Christians as the target of the terrorist attack.

"There is a growing sense of insecurity among minorities in Pakistan, and whoever is not a Muslim is not safe in this country," Cecil Shane Chaudhry, executive director of the National Commission for Justice and Peace, a Christian NGO, told Agence France-Presse.

Tensions have risen over Pakistan's blasphemy law in recent weeks. Critics of the law — which criminalizes insulting Islam — argue that it has been unfairly wielded against scores of Christians to settle personal disputes. Last month, an extremist was executed for assassinating a governor opposed to the blasphemy law. The death sentence of Mumtaz Qadri, a police officer, sparked mass protests and heightened anger among extremists. They held protests over the weekend, marking the 40th day since Qadri's death."

"There have not been major attacks in Lahore for the last four or five years," said Rumi, who is also a consulting editor for the Friday Times, a Pakistani newspaper. "But this attack [could mark the] return of large-scale terrorist attacks."

The Christian community had the feeling that there would be backlash from Qadri's execution, especially on festivals like Easter," Shamoon Gill, a Christian activist and spokesman for the All Pakistan Minorities Alliance, told the Agence France-Presse."

Can we say Islam is the problem? Or, is it inappropriate to state the obvious? People who interpret religion, especially Islam, literally legitimize unthinkable actions. If you take literal what should be interpreted spiritually, you get confused ideology which the text is actually speaking against; or simply meant to be taken figuratively. For example, slavery, in the New Testament wasn't meant to be taken literally, rather it was a spiritual connotation of spiritual servitude, but that text was taken literally and caused Southerners in America to endorse the barbaric Trans-Atlantic Save Trade in the early 1800's. And, it was that same Bible used to overturn that very idea that slavery was okay. If the Holy Spirit doesn't inspire people's heart through the text, it's not from God. Meaning, Christ doesn't call people to violence, no to the contrary, Christ says blessed are the peacemakers. Blessed are the peacemakers not the racist, not the wicked hatred for our fellow man. There is one pure religion, and there is one way to God through Christ, the prince of peace.

1). Micheal Kaplan. (28 March 2016). Why The Taliban Targeted Pakistan’s Christians: Lahore Attack Underscores Religious Minority’s Plight. IBT. http://www.ibtimes.com/why-taliban-targeted-pakistans-christians-lahore-attack-underscores-religious-2344263

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