26. The Kaaba is a square stone building in Al-Masjid-al-Haram (the well-known mosque at Makka). Muslims line up in prayer facing towards this direction. It is covered by a large black cloth embroidered with gold thread to display Quranic verses.
We talked about the Hajj last week, and this is the place where Muslims go on the Hajj (pilgrimage). This building was called the “house of Allah” before Islam came into existence. Most Muslims don’t know the history of the Kaaba. They only know that they are to pray toward it and to make the Hajj once in their lifetime. All of the things Muslims do on their Hajj were done by the pre-islamic people in Arabia. The Hajj to the Kaaba is a continuation of the pagan practices of the pre-islamic Arab poeople.
Before the rise of Islam the Kaaba hosed 360 idols and Allah was the chief god over these idols. Today Muslims are taught that this is the place where Abraham was to offer Ishmael. Remember, Muslims believe that Abraham offered Ismael, not Isaac.
An important part of the Kaaba is the black stone that is called the “moon rock.” They believe that Adam descended out of Heaven on this black rock. This rock is still worshiped by Muslims and many of them and they believe that if the touch or kiss this rock their sins will be remitted. From this we see that although Islam claims to have rejected all forms of idolatry, it does, in fact, practice it.
One of the gods of the Kaaba was Hubal which is a derivatives of Baal and the worship of the Kaaba is a form of Baal worship. Even though the practices of Islam are the same as the pagans before Islam, Muhammad said that Allah commanded these practices.
27. The Kafir are the non-believers. This is closely related to number 28, the Kuffar, which is the plural of Kafir.
We, as non-Muslims, should be greatly offended by these words. The word actually means the filth or more technically the excrement. They often translate it with nicer words like infidel, but this does not remove its real meaning. The Qur’an teaches that Allah hates the unbeliever and this is why this word is used to describe those who do not follow Islam.
29. The Madrassa is simply a school where children go to learn.
30. The Mahdi is the Islamic Messiah. This is the one the Muslims are waiting for. They are also waiting for Isa, the Muslim Jesus, but Isa will serve the Mahdi. As I said last week, the Islamic teaching in this area is like looking at the teaching in Revelation in a mirror. Our Messiah is their Antichrist and our Antichrist is their Mahdi.
31. Mecca is the holiest city in Islam. It is claimed to be the birthplace of the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad.
32. Medina is called the city of the Prophet, It is about 100 km (60 miles) north of Mecca.
There is a major shift in the teaching of Islam between these two cities. When Muhammad was in Mecca he received what he claimed to be the early verses of the Qur’an. These are the verses that are supposed to be non-compulsive and peaceful. In these teachings Muhammad tried to get along with those of other religions, especially Jews and Christians.
After Muhammad was thrown out of Mecca and went to Medina his teachings changed. It is here that he became a warlord and where he received the latter verses of the Qur’an. This is also where the principle of abrogation was born. This is the teaching that the latter verses supersede the earlier verses of the Qur’an.
The latter verses teach that there is compulsion in Islam. It is these verses that tell the Kuffar to submit to Islam or die. Abrogation dictates that these verses have overrule the earlier verses. The Muslims can live under the earlier verses when they don’t have the power to compel non-believers, but when they reach a point where they can, they are to move to the latter verses.
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