Modernize Islam?

 
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Daniel Pipes, who has a tendency to polarize people with some of his views on Islam came to the University of Michigan to speak on how to combat radical Islam. An article was written by the Michigan Daily about his talk, which was sponsored by a pro-Israeli student group.

In the article it quoted Pipes saying, “Our goal in the case of the current war is the modernization of Islam.” This quote got me thinking on several levels.

First of all, the purist in the radical Islam movement would be infuriated with his comments. They see the “modernization of Islam” as one of their greatest fights. They want to see the whole world dominated by the Sharia Law.

Secondly, I couldn’t help to think about the modernization or secularization of Christianity over the years. In many ways, this has brought forth the current condition of Christianity in our generation. We have seen more consumerism and self-centeredness in the Church today than ever before.

Christ’s calling of “denying ourselves and taking up our cross” is not a popular concept in our secularized Christianity. In fact, I am wondering if a lot of the Christianity that we see today goes against many of the teachings of Christ.

Maybe, the radical Muslims and the fully-surrendered Christ-followers have something in common – well, this is how some of the secular newscasters would like to see it. But the big difference is that Christ calls us to bring forth transformation with love rather than violence.