Christianity created Western Civilization. With its biblical principles of love thy neighbor as thyself and the belief all men should have equal opportunity, Christianity not only transformed the brutal, misogynist pagan culture of Rome, it also transformed the barbarian cultures wherever missionaries went. This fact has been pointed out by many of the best historians, including such disparate scholars as Christopher Dawson (“Religion And The Rise Of Western Culture”), Mircea Eliade, Walter Burkert and Alvin J. Schmidt (“How Christianity Changed The World”).
Recently, a Muslim scholar, Ibrahim Al-Buleihi, caused an uproar in Islamic circles when he correctly pointed out that all the achievements of modern civilization are the result of Western Christian culture, not Islam. However, Americans have forgotten the uniqueness of Christian Civilization, including the salvation that sets men free and the faith in Christ Jesus that empowers them to overcome.
This fact was brought home to me recently when one of my cars broke down, and I had to look for another vehicle. Running the official local dealership for an American car company were three Afghani Muslims. When they lied to me, I decided not to do business with the dealership.
The sales manager called me to win me back.
I asked him if he was Muslim, and he said yes. I asked him if he thought it was OK to lie to Christians, as the Quran recommends. He first started out saying he respected all religions, but then admitted that the Quran did recommend lying to all non-believers (see Sura 3:28, 3:85, 5:51, 40:28, and 16:106 in the Quran). He was very clear about his faith, and I was very clear that it would be impossible to do business with someone who was commanded to lie to me in by his scripture. I also noted that he could be delivered from following Muhammad, a tribal warlord who gleefully killed hundreds, according to the Quran, if he accepted the loving God who sent His only begotten son, Jesus Christ, to give him the free gift of salvation by sacrificing Himself to pay the penalty for his sins.
Of course, there are people of every stripe and religion who lie, but Christianity and Judaism condemn lying, from the beginning of the Bible in Exodus 20:16, where it says “thou shalt not bear false witness,” to the end in Revelation 21:8, where it says liars will not get into the Kingdom of God.
Why is this important? Because, you cannot sustain a healthy economy when people are lying to each other.
Adam Smith, the father of the free market, said you can only have a free market in a moral society. We have moved away from a moral society and have tolerated a breakdown in faith and values. We have also tolerated religions that are opposed to morality. This tolerance of evil will be our demise.
Wherever Christians went, society prospered. Wherever Muslims went, the green fields turned to desert. Even the Afghanis who ran this dealership complained about Afghanistan and how harsh, brutal and barbarous it was.
The solution, of course, is to witness to these people outside the Kingdom of God so they can have new life in Christ. And by doing that, as Deuteronomy 8:18 says, you will empower them to succeed.
The other solution is for Christians not to be unequally yoked to non-believers. As in the days of Rome, when Christians were subjected to tremendous tribulation, the church knew well enough not to be unequally yoked. It became a model to the Romans of love, compassion, free enterprise and all the virtues espoused in the Bible. As a result, Romans gave up Roman courts and came to Christian courts for judgment. And, many Romans became Christian.
Islam is not a good thing. It has brought slavery, tragedy and evil wherever it has been allowed to stand unopposed. Anyone who is interested in seeing the true face of Islam should see the movie “The Stoning Of Soraya M.,” which opens on June 26, 2009.
Christians in America need to reject the mushy-headed political correctness that allows evil to flourish in the name of a false sense of “tolerance,” “unity” and “empathy.” They need to be distinct from the collapsing culture around them, so that those with eyes to see will see Christian civilization as a city set upon a hill.