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The Religion of Peace

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"Discover the Truth's" Game

9:38-42
"If You March Not Forth,
He Will Punish You With
 a Painful Torment..."


From Discover the Truth:

When we look at these verses in its historical context, the verses do not encourage Muslims to commit violence against the innocent
(October 11, 2014)

What the Quran Says

9:38. O you who believe! What is the matter with you, that when you are asked to march forth in the Cause of Allah (i.e. Jihad) you cling heavily to the earth? Are you pleased with the life of this world rather than the Hereafter? But little is the enjoyment of the life of this world as compared with the Hereafter.
9:39. If you march not forth, He will punish you with a painful torment and will replace you by another people, and you cannot harm Him at all, and Allah is Able to do all things.
9:40. If you help him (Muhammad ) not (it does not matter), for Allah did indeed help him...
9:41. March forth, whether you are light or heavy, strive hard with your wealth and your lives in the Cause of Allah. This is better for you, if you but knew.
9:42. Had it been a near gain (booty in front of them) and an easy journey, they would have followed you, but the distance was long for them, and they would swear by Allah, "If we only could, we would certainly have come forth with you." They destroy their ownselves, and Allah knows that they are liars


What the Apologists Want You to Believe

Discover the Truth says that believers are supposed to view this verse in its historical context, rather than as a personal directive:
Chapter 9, verse 38 to 42 was revealed to Prophet Muhammed (p) in order to engage the Byzantine (Roman) Empire who had mobilised troops in order to exterminate Muslims. When we look at these verses in its historical context, the verses do not encourage Muslims to commit violence against the innocent.
By this, they are referring to an occassion in which Muhammad formed a military expedition to attack Christian lands at Tabuk.


How They Do It: 'Adding' to the Quran

The words 'Tabuk,' 'Byzantine' or 'Roman' do not appear in the verses, even though DTT insists that this must be read into them.


How They Do It: Citing Contemporary Apologists and Weak Hadith

Discover the Truth finds two 20th century apologists who seem to have discovered detail about the Tabuk campaign which does not appear in the earliest Sira or reliable Hadith.


How They Do It: Sleight of Hand

It is curious that DTT insists that verses 9:29 and 9:38-42 refer, but that a verse in between, 9:30, somehow does not.  Allah certainly works in mysterious ways...


Why They are Wrong

Discover the Truth is not wrong about verses 9:38-42 referring to the Tabuk expedition when they were narrated.  They do not constitute an order to Muhammad, however, but a threat from Muhammad (see v. 40) to a people who evidently did not feel that they were under any sort of danger, and, hence, did not see the need to go marching a great distance "for the cause of Allah."

Neither is there anything in the context that limits this to history or matters of self-defense, as DTT insists.  Certainly Allah was capable of including these limitations in the passage if it were the case.  Instead, he defined the enemy in terms of their religious belief and whether they would pay the jizya to Muslims.

Further Readinge">Further Reading

Did a Byzantine Army Really Attack Muhammad?

Discover the Truth Propaganda Index

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