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Does Islam Teach or Condone Terrorism? Absolutely NOT!

By: Shannon Abulnasr © 2017

No Terrorism

The most common questions these days asked by non-Muslims, are inquiries related to terrorism. Does Islam teach it or condone it? No. 

Firstly, don’t Judge Islam based on the actions of Muslims.  Muslims are just like anyone else in the world.  There are good, bad, intelligent, ignorant, religious, and non-religious people belonging to every religious group, even amongst Atheists.  Actions of a person does not mean that their religion approves of it, or teaches it.

Islam, as a religion, should not be judged on the actions of Muslim, because some of them are not practicing their religion, or are ignorant of the religion. Many simply ignore the teachings of Islam completely, and just do whatever they want to do for whatever reasons or agendas they have.  Then there are those that ‘appear’ to be religious, because they claim they are Muslims, yet are doing horrific crimes that contradict the teachings, making them criminals according to sharia, and they will get the wrath of Allah for the crimes they do.  They should not be considered representatives of Islam, and this goes for ISIS, the Taliban, Al-Qaeda, etc. - Just as Christian priests that rape children are not representatives of Christian beliefs.   

Terrorism has no religion

Islam strictly forbids the acts terrorism we hear about these days.  The killing of innocents, and even harming animals and plants in times of war are forbidden in Islam.  

Islam does permit the use of self-defense, but not initiating violence against anyone, regardless of religion of that person. Islam teaches tolerance of non-Muslims as long as they are not fighting the Muslims, and are even protected and defended by the Muslims if they reside in Muslim ruled nations.

There is not a single verse in the Qur’an that condones killing people based on their religion or disbelief in Islam. This however can NOT be said for other religions commands in their scriptures because they actually command to kill disbelievers of their faith in their scriptures simply for disbelieving, but this can’t found in the Qur’an.

Are Forced Conversions Allowed Under Sharia?

Many people are holding the misconception that Muslims can force people to convert to Islam, but this is completely false!  The Quran says that there is no compulsion in religion.

“Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from Error: whoever rejects evil and believes in Allah hath grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold, that never breaks. And Allah heareth and knoweth all things.” (Quran, 2:256)

Therefore, ‘forced conversions’ are forbidden in Islam and considered invalid.

What does the Qur’an say about how to treat non-Muslims? 

Let’s see what it says:

“Again and again will those who disbelieve, wish that they had bowed (to God’s will) in Islam. LEAVE THEM ALONE, to enjoy (the good things of this life) and to please themselves: let (false) hope amuse them: soon will knowledge (undeceive them).” (Quran 15:2-3)

“And say, "The truth is from your Lord, so whoever wills - let him believe; and WHOEVER WILLS – LET HIM DISBELIEVE." Indeed, We have prepared for the wrongdoers a fire whose walls will surround them…” (Qur’an 18:29)

“If it had been thy Lord's will, they would all have believed,- all who are on earth! wilt thou then compel mankind, against their will, to believe!” (Qur’an 10:99)

“Say: "Obey Allah, and obey the Messenger: but if ye turn away, he is only responsible for the duty placed on him and ye for that placed on you. If ye obey him, ye shall be on right guidance. The Messenger's duty is ONLY to preach the clear (Message).” (Qur’an 24:54) 

““Say : O ye that reject Faith! I worship not that which ye worship, Nor will ye worship that which I worship. And I will not worship that which ye have been wont to worship, Nor will ye worship that which I worship. TO YOU BE YOUR WAY, AND TO ME MINE.”” (Qur’an 109:1-6)

"Do good to others, surely Allah loves those who do good to others." (Qur’an 2:195)

"Mankind is a single nation." (Qur’an 2:213)

"We (Allah) have not sent you (O Muhammad) except as a mercy to the nations." (Qur’an 21:107)

"Speak good words to all people." (Qur’an 2:83)

"Allah commands you that . . . when you judge between people (i.e., of any race, religion, family, class, etc.), you judge with justice." (Qur’an 4:58)

"Bear patiently what they (abusers) say." (Qur’an 20:130)

"And if you invite them to guidance, they hear not; and you see them looking towards you, yet they see not. Take to forgiveness and enjoin good and turn away from the ignorant." (Qur’an 7:198-199)

“And if any one of the polytheists seeks your protection, then grant him protection so that he may hear the words of Allah . Then deliver him to his place of safety. That is because they are a people who do not know.” (Qur’an 9:6)

"O you who believe, be upright for Allah, bearers of witness with justice; and do not let the hatred of a people incite you not to act with justice. Be just;that is nearer to observance of duty." (Qur’an 5:8)

“And have patience against what they (your enemies) say, and withdraw from them in a beautiful manner” (Qur’an 73:10)

“And Allah does not forbid you from being kind and just to those (disbelievers) who do not fight you with regards to Religion, nor evict you from your homes. Verily Allah loves those who are just.” (Qur’an 60:8)

“And if they (The Pagans) desist (from fighting you) then there should be no transgression (against them), except against a people who are oppressors.” (Qur’an 2:193)

“And if they (the enemy) incline towards peace then you too, incline towards the same.” (Qur’an 8:61)

“Many of the People of the Scripture wish they could turn you back to disbelief after you have believed, out of envy from themselves [even] after the truth has become clear to them. So pardon and overlook until Allah delivers His command. Indeed, Allah is over all things competent.” (Qur’an 2:109)

The Messenger of Allah and his Companions used to forgive the idolaters and the followers of the book (Jews and Christians), as Allah had commanded them, and they used to show patience on hearing hurtful words. (Summary from Bukhari Volume 6, Book 60, Hadith 89 )

The Quran instructs Muslims to treat non-Muslims courteously in a spirit of kindness and generosity, given they are not hostile towards Muslims.

The story of the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) gives many instances of his kindness and tolerance, and peaceful co-existence with non-Muslims. He would be generous towards his non-Muslim neighbors, and even exchange gifts with them.  He would visit them when they fell sick, and do business with them. There was even a Jewish family that he regularly gave charity to, and after his death, the Muslims maintained this charity towards them.[i]

Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), taught his companions to treat everyone, regardless of belief and background, with equality, respect, and tolerance. A neighbor, he said, has rights over you, and this extended to mean an entire community.

One of Muhammad’s first acts in Medina was to establish an agreement with the Jews which would protect them, respect their beliefs and give them equal rights. Later, when Christians arrived in the city Muhammad arranged for them to stay in the mosque where they held their religious services alongside Muslims who prayed in the same space. 

Diversity and pluralism is integral to the message of the Quran.

“God made you into nations and tribes so that you may know one other (not that ye may despise each other)” (Qur’an 49:13

Why are Muslims not saying or doing anything about terrorism?


Muslims are denouncing it, and even FIGHTING terrorism in every nation where it is found, so they are doing even more than simply denouncing it verbally.

70,000 Muslim clerics have come together to condemn global terrorist organizations, including the Taliban, al Qaeda and the militant group that calls itself the Islamic State, and during an annual gathering of South Asian Sunni Muslims in India, almost 1.5 million attendees signed a document protesting global terrorist activity, according to The Times of India and the HuffingtonPost . was originally a Google spreadsheet containing a 712-page list of Muslims condemning things with sources produced by Heraa Hashmi, a 19-year-old American Muslim student at the University of Colorado, who challenged those that confronted her with the question of why Muslims were not condemning terrorism.  It continues to grow, and you can search the seemingly endless list of organizations, Imams, scholars, and mosques that have done so, and continue to do so.

At least 500 imams and religious leaders have protested against the London Bridge attackers in condemnation of the “vile murderers” according to The Independent .

Over 120 Islamic scholars from around the world, many of them are the leading Muslim voices in their own countries, have issued an open letter denouncing Islamic State militants and refuting their religious arguments.  An array of Muslim leaders and groups have publicly rejected the Islamist movement since it imposed its brutal rule over large areas of Syria and Iraq. Read more on that here .

The Open letter to Baghdadi (leader of ISIS) – Is a declaration letter, signed by 120 Muslim Scholars, telling ISIS what they are doing wrong and why. It details many of the things that they are doing that is against Islamic teachings.

No one with a brain, or the ability to do a simple Google search, can ever claim that Muslims are not denouncing terrorism.

So, What about Jihad?

This article explains jihad in great detail, including what it is (it is NOT holy war, or fighting against innocent disbelievers as many think). It also explains what is permissible and not, and when it is permissible and not.

What do non-Muslim clerics say about Islam?

Mahatma Gandhi issued a statement published in 'Young India' in 1924 which said:

“I wanted to know the best of the life of one who holds today an undisputed sway over the hearts of millions of mankind.... I became more than ever convinced that it was not the sword that won a place for Islam in those days in the scheme of life. It was the rigid simplicity, the utter self-effacement of the Prophet the scrupulous regard for pledges, his intense devotion to his friends and followers, his intrepidity, his fearlessness, his absolute trust in God and in his own mission. These and not the sword carried everything before them and surmounted every obstacle. When I closed the second volume (of the Prophet's biography), I was sorry there was not more for me to read of that great life.”

The Pope in the Vatican has publicly stated that the Qur’an is a book teaching peace, and that Islam is a peaceful religion.

Listen to the advice of this Christian minister, talking about Islam, and how people of all faiths need to practice tolerance and should learn about each other to understand one another.  She also speaks against other Christian ministers that preach hate, and talks about how all religious texts talk about persecution and wars in history against believers, including the Bible, and quotes scripture from both the Bible and Qur’an about peace, and love, and worshipping the Creator.  She gives excellent advice for people of all faiths.  

If you have questions about Islam, and want to talk to a knowledgeable and qualified Muslim about Islam in a LIVE CHAT 24/7, please visit IslamReligion and click their live chat to start talking.

Other Related Recommended Reading:

Rights of Non-Muslims in Islam

What does Islam say about Justice?

Shariah Explained : Understanding Shariah

Should Muslims Obey the Laws of the Non-Muslim Countries they live in?

Crime and Punishment in Islam

Why Convert To A Religions That Supports Terrorism?

Is Allah a Loving God? 

What is an Infidel?

Jihad Explained

[i] Abu Ubayd, al-Amwaal, p. 613

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