Many people are misled into believing that Islam promotes terrorism and begin cherry-picking and quote verses of the Quran that specifically justifies their belief. This method is based on a corrupt belief and holds no water. The reason is the fact that people quote and take things out of context.
The Quran has a prescribed methodology towards reading , learning and understanding as well as interpretation if there are ambiguities. For some certain passages there is a reason why the revelation was sent down. Perhaps it was pertaining to an event that led to its revelation.
This is called the asbabunuzul ie. the cause of why the revelation was sent down. When seen in this context then people can see how the passage can be applied and we can rule out the false claims leveled against the book that is purported to promote terrorism.
A favourite verse that islamic hate -sites like to quote is:
Surah Al Baqarah 2:191
“And kill them wherever you find them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out. And Al-Fitnah is worse than killing. And fight not with them at Al-Masjid-al-Haram (the sanctuary at Makkah), unless they (first) fight you there. But if they attack you, then kill them. Such is the recompense of the disbelievers.”
Let us have a look at how Nouman Ali Khan answers the allegation that this verse is specific to wage war against unbelievers.
First things first. It is a question of perspective. If you watch the movie red dawn, the North Koreans are invading United states, and children are running into the forests. But the US and the children are considerered as the “terrorists”. Very uncanny. So really it is a question of who’s side are you on. To the Koreans you are the terrorist but to the Americans its the Koreans.
The prophet at the age of 40 he became a prophet. He started to recite verses of revelation until he began to become a threat. There were attempts on his life. People felt offended. There were even attempts to people who believed in him. So eventually it came to the state where they could not live there any more.
So they secretly migrated to another city named Madinah leaving their businesses and their homes. Some people were killed and tortured in Mecca but they did not fight back. So in madinah a conglomerate government was formed with the Jews and Christians.
And then they started to prepare for battle with the city they ran away from. From a political science perspective they have every right to do so because they were driven out and expelled from their homes for no reason and oppressed for believing in something.
So this is a universal belief that people have the right to take arms if they are driven out of their homes. So they enter into various battles.
Eventually the Muslims win. At the end a peaceful march of 100 000 muslims walk into Mecca and the Meccans are overwhelmed. Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. gathers all the chieftains, and says ” There is no harm coming to you today” .
Then revelation comes. God says give them four months to think about the faith, take them to a safe place so they do not feel intimidated. If they become a Muslim fine but if not they better not come back if they do kill them wherever you find them. No prisoners are being taken.
This is a specific context of that declaration. It is not a universal foreign policy. It has nothing to do with what will happen after the prophetic tradition because the belief is when any messenger is rejected the final wrath comes down. The penalty of god’stradition in administering his final wrath is absolute annihilation. It is known that in Noah’s flood when his wrath poured no soul was spared his wrath. But here , in this case it was not punishment that came from the sky or typhoon or a flood. It was the Muslim army that over the city of Meccca.
According to God’s tradition all enemies must be annihilated but what happened here?
The enemies were given a choice of leaving. If they returned they would be annihilated. So it is really about context. Many manipulate the words of the Quran and take it out of context.