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"Discover the Truth's" Game

18:65-81
"They Proceeded, Till They Met a Boy, Whom He Killed"


From Discover the Truth:

Some misguided individuals have distorted the above passage and claim that it sanctions ‘Honor killing’.
(October 23, 2014)

What the Quran Says

18:66. Musa (Moses) said to him (Khidr) "May I follow you so that you teach me something of that knowledge (guidance and true path) which you have been taught (by Allah)?"...
18:74. Then they both proceeded, till they met a boy, he (Khidr) killed him. Musa (Moses) said: "Have you killed an innocent person who had killed none?"...
18:80. As for the boy, his parents were believers, and we feared lest he should oppress them by rebellion and disbelief

What the Apologists Want You to Believe

The verses tell of a boy who was killed by a holy figure, al-Khadir, because he would have grown up and "oppressed" his parents with "rebellion and disbelief."  "Misguided individuals" take this as an endorsement of honor killing (which is endemic to the Islamic world and sanctioned by Sharia).

Nothing could be further from the truth, DTT insists.  For one, the figure in the story was an angel.  For another, there is a hadith verse from Sahih Bukhari which forbids killing one's children.  Therefore, only an angel is allowed to kill a child, and parents are never to do so.


Why They are Wrong

For starters, DTT's argument that because an angel kills a child, it is forbidden for a parent to do so is bad logic.  The conclusion does not follow from the premise.  If anything, one would probably be expected to emulate a "slave of Allah," as the Quran refers to al-Khadir.

Neither is it actually alleged than al-Khadir is an angel as DTT casually designates him.  Ibn Kathir calls him a "learned man", for example."  There does not appear to be anything in the Quran passage or early writings that make him other than human.  It is not until many centuries later that tall tales arise about immortality and dragon-slaying.

So what about the sahih hadith verse in which Muhammad forbids the killing of children?  This actually refers to the pre-Islamic Arab practice of infanticide, which is referenced in the Quran verses 81:8-9 and 6:151. 

The hadith verse that DTT cites refers to a general rule, not a rule without exceptions.  For example, there are several sahih hadith in which Muhammad forbids the killing of women - but several others in which he does order a woman killed, in cases in which she is said to merit it.

In the same way, a general rule against killing children doesn't mean that there aren't exceptions. Sahih hadith, such as those from al-Tirmidhi say that the boy had his head pulled off because "he was a disbeliever."   The Quran itself says that the boy was killed because he was destined to "oppress his [believing] parents with rebellion and disbelief."  Recall that fitna is said to be worse than killing.


Further Reading

Discover the Truth Propaganda Index

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