The Bible tells us God is known by many names and people around the world believe many religions worship the same Lord in their own way – but one Cardinal claims the God of Islam is not the Christian God.
American Catholic Cardinal Raymond Burke, the former head of the highest court at the Vatican, believes Muslims and Christians do not worship the same God.
He believes the largest differences between the two religions is the way Christians attempt to follow Jesus’ example and how the Muslim god demands power to control countries and individuals’ lives.
The National Catholic Register transcribed Cardinal Burke’s comments, which were made during a teleconference earlier this week.
“[W]e know that the only answer to the very serious challenges we face today is Jesus Christ and his gospel, his teaching, his life given to us in the Church,” he stated.
He explained the “very serious responsibility” Church leaders have to share Christ’s truth. Church leaders have been tasked to share the Gospel in a humble way and “with a great sense of love, the same love that inspired our Lord and Savior.”
Cardinal Burke described: “That’s what is needed so much in the Church today. This is what people want to hear from priests, and bishops and cardinals – they want to hear the truth of the faith. They aren’t interested in my personal opinions about things, which won’t save their souls…they look to me to have reflected very deeply on the truth of the faith and on their application in society today and to speak to that truth with love and care for the society.”
After sharing the love saturating the Church, he spoke of Islam to say it is “influenced by a relativism of a religious order. I hear people saying to me, ‘Well, we’re all worshipping the same God. We all believe in love.’ “But I say stop a minute, and let’s examine carefully what Islam is, and what our Christian faith teaches us both.”
He said Christian faith views God as a creator of reason, the “giver of revelation” and “we’re given a divine grace to live according to that law. This is not true in Islam.”
The Cardinal claimed his views are not extreme but are based on fact.
He studied Islam, the Koran and commentators. He’s written several papers and came to the conclusion: “the God of Islam is a governor. In other words, fundamentally Islam is, Sharia is their law, and that law, which comes from Allah, must dominate every man eventually. And it’s not a law that’s founded on love.
“To say that we all believe in love is simply not correct. And while our experience may be with individual Muslims, [who] may be…gentle and kind and so forth, we have to understand that in the end what they believe most deeply, that to which they ascribe in their hearts, demands that they govern the world.
“Whereas, in the Christian faith, we’re taught that by the development of right reason, by sound metaphysics, and then that which leads to faith and to the light and strength that’s given by faith, we make our contribution to society also in terms of its governance, but the Church makes no pretense that it’s to govern the world, but rather that it’s to inspire and assist those who govern the world to act justly and rightly toward the citizens.”
Cardinal Burke explained general statements, such as “we’re all believing in the same God and so forth,” is “not helpful and ultimately it will be the end of Christianity.”
In closing, the Cardinal said he believes “what’s most important for us today is to understand Islam from its own documents and not to presume that we know already what we’re talking about.”
By Kenya Sinclair