A question was recently asked in my adult class about the appropriateness of watching violence on TV. In responding to the question it was noted that the Bible contains a lot of violence, and now I read that according to computer textual analysis the Bible is more violent than the Quran. What are we to make of this?
The analyst, whose findings were published in the UK, said his findings cheer up Muslims and rile Christians, but the American Thinker author who was reviewing the findings made some very important points.
He began by noting that a raw word search in the U.S. criminal code would find all sorts of violence, but pointed out that that would not mean the code endorses murder and robbery and rape. He also noted that ancient Israel was a full-fledged nation with a military, surrounded by hostile nations that waged annihilation or near-annihilation warfare, and that if Israel’s neighbors had been peaceful, we wouldn’t find war verses in the Hebrew Bible.
The analyst also “discovered” that killing and destruction were referenced even more often in the New Testament than the Quran. The respondent agreed that the New Testament did have violence in it, but said recording that Jesus was crucified and Paul was beaten and stoned did not mean Christians should crucify or beat or stone people.
He went on to say: “There is simply no verse in all the New Testament that commands or even suggests Christians should form a militia or even a military to injure or kill people in the name of Christ. Rather, Peter and Paul hand the sword over to the state. This is where, once again, our Founders got things right. They separated the state from church, so the state does not meddle in church matters. Christians are called to preach the gospel that changes criminals to honest men, while the government is purposed to raise up a military and police force to protect the citizenry.”
He then notes that no Christian denomination today quotes the Old Testament to endorse or encourage violence, but the Quran is filled with violent verses that terrorists use to justify killing people in the name of Allah.
Just because a computer analysis suggests something is so doesn’t mean it is.
God Bless, Rick