Glasgow Cathedral Koran
Islam

Qur’an in the Eucharist? The Provost of Glasgow Cathedral subverts Christian revelation

This is a guest post by the Rev’d Dr Gavin Ashenden, Chaplain to the Queen.

__________________________

I have just returned from Paris where I was invited to be part of a conversation with three imams sponsored by Lebanese TV.

I thought they were kind, impressive and delightful people. It was a privilege to meet them and talk to them. We had many things in common, but most of all a deep attraction to God who made us, whose intentions towards us, we know, are love and mercy.

The strength of the encounter was the friendship and mutual admiration it produced. The weakness was that we did not speak at all about ‘the problem’.

The problem was not about the ‘Good’ which we recognised together; it was about two things: the ranking of God’s virtues, and the struggle between truth and deception.

Islam sees power as God’s primary defining characteristic, and Christianity tells us that it is love. The difference is enormous in implication. Power remains invulnerable; love reaches out to the beloved and becomes vulnerable.

Jesus, to a Muslim, cannot be the Son of God, the Word made Flesh, for it makes God vulnerable. In which case anyone claiming that God is like that is peddling a deceit.

Christianity finds, however, in the life and person of Christ, that God is above all else Love – and holds that view because of what it finds written in the Gospels.

Christians also experience the spiritual dimension of putting the Gospels into practice. It confirms for them the integrity of the whole venture; the loving of the enemy, the turning of the other cheek, the forgiveness without limit – these practices flow from a God of Love who invites us to make ourselves vulnerable as He is vulnerable.

To Mohammed, and those who look to him for their window into God, the writers of the Gospels are deceivers. They have invented or distorted the claims and the evidence that Jesus is God incarnate, and that to look on Him is to experience the Father. The Koran claims to expose this deception and condemns it.

As you might expect, there are practical out-workings of these two different theologies and claims about God.

How does ‘power’ act when it is affronted and challenged? It usually confronts whatever challenges it and then contains or even destroys it. This is how power acts to be true to itself.

And, indeed, this is how Islam acts on behalf of Allah when faced with Christianity and Christians who insist that the life of Jesus shows God as pre-eminently Love, whether it is by the invocation of blasphemy laws in Pakistan, the Jihadi beheadings of Coptic Christians on a Libyan beach, or the complete ban on churches and the Christian faith in Saudi Arabia.

Love, when denied, confronted or attacked, responds with more love. We have, beyond the example of Jesus, those who faithfully embody him: the known, like St Francis of Assisi; the famous, like Mother Teresa of Calcutta; or the hidden, like Charles de Foucauld of Algiers.

In the turbulent conjunction of Christianity and Islam we are not faced with two sides of the same coin, or different legs of the same elephant. We are faced with two forces or energies with very different preoccupations and outcomes.

This is not to say that Christianity does not get touched and deflected by a preoccupation with power. It has often. And when it does, it behaves more like Islam in its crushing of the opposition and its exercise of force against its opponents.

Nor is it to say that Islam is not touched or infused by love. It is, as evidenced by the dignified, warm and impressive imams I met through Lebanese TV. Evidenced also by certain aspects of Islam, particularly the Sufi tradition or the Ahmadiyya sect. (Though it needs to be pointed out that both Suffism and the Ahmadiyya are often badly persecuted by mainstream Islam – which only goes to offer further support for the analysis offered here).

What is the significance, then, of a Muslim standing at the lectern in a Christian cathedral and publicly proclaiming words from the Koran which announce that the Gospel writers were engaged in a blasphemous deceit?

‘Allah can have no son’ insists Surah 19. Jesus was mistaken or misreported when he proclaimed himself one with the Father, the Way, the Truth and the Life, the only access to Him.

For this is what happened in Glasgow Cathedral when a Muslim law student called Madinah Javed read out from the lectern Surah 19 on January 6th, the Feast of the Epiphany:

 

It’s hard to know what was in the mind of the Provost of Glasgow Cathedral when he arranged for this assault on Jesus and the apostles who authored the Gospels, during the proclamation of the Word in the Epiphany Eucharist at the place of the bishop’s seat, the heart of the Christian community.

The accusation of lying or deception was not just directed towards Jesus and the Apostles; but is also directed against those who have lived out this deceit; those who as a tribute to them who built the cathedral in which he serves, in the shape of a crucified God; to those, too, who have been martyred at the hands of Islam, because they refused to renounce this deception when confronted with it.

The Provost, the Very Rev’d Kelvin Holdsworth, has helpfully explained what lay behind his strategy of having the Koran read in the Cathedral. He intended that it should help build relationships between Christians and Muslims in Glasgow.

This is a laudable aim. Who could be against such a worthwhile strategy? But is that what happened? Only if he had set about it with a sufficient degree of theological awareness and political acumen. He hoped it might “lead to a greater awareness of the things we hold in common and to dialogue about the ways in which we differ”.

The flaw in his approach is that while the Muslims who chose the reading seem to have been only too aware of the differences, and chose to declare them in their Koranic reading during the Christian worship, the Provost, on the other hand, appears to have been unaware.

When asked if he had known what the passage of the Koran said about Jesus, how it denied what Christians hold central to their faith, he “declined to comment further”.

This was not, then, “a dialogue about the ways we differ”. It was not even a strategy of parity. If there had been a conversation in which he had said, “Let us insert into each other’s worship and prayers readings from our sacred scriptures which confront and contradict each others’ faith”, how would the Islamic community have responded? We will never know, because the exercise was not actually the one he claimed it to be.

There was no dialogue in the Epiphany Eucharist; only a refutation of what Christians hold most dear and upon which salvation depends – God himself in Christ, dying for our sins and inviting our worship – which Surah 19 denies.

As for the strategy, in over 30 years of interfaith conversations, I have never yet come across a Muslim community which allowed those passages in the Gospels acclaiming the divinity of Christ to be read in Friday prayers.

Kelvin Holdsworth’s lack of awareness, and his carelessness with the sanctity of worship offered to Christ, declared by the creeds to be “God from God, Light from Light, of one very substance with the Father” is not so much a contribution to interfaith dialogue as a betrayal of those Christians throughout the world whose churches have been forcibly torn down and desecrated by an Islam that energetically repudiates the claims of Christian revelation.

There are ways of setting about creating a deeper trust between Christians and Muslims, and personal friendships between Christian priests and Muslim imams is one of them. Honesty and informed theological dialogue is another. But offering a platform for Koranic repudiation of the central tenets of the Christian faith during the Holy Eucharist on the solemn feast of the Epiphany is not one of them.

The Provost might consider apologising to Christians, especially those who have suffered so deeply at the hands of a re-energised Islam that has violently assaulted Christians and the Christian faith across countries and continents, from Europe to Australia.

Some people will wonder if he has sufficient theological astuteness to remain in such a responsible office in times as fraught as these? Our interfaith relations require both integrity and competence. The strategy in Glasgow appears to have been short of both.

  • Concerned nominal Christian

    If this is true, your Grace – and from your description I have to believe it is (not understanding Arabic and taking it on trust that the chant is indeed from Sura 19) – then surely the Provost must be replaced, as this Sura specifically states that it is blasphemous to call Jesus the son of God?

  • Coniston

    ‘Islam sees power as God’s primary defining characteristic, and Christianity tells us that it is love’.

    The Christian God is a God of Love, but he does not cease to be a God of Reason – the Divine Reason or Logos implicit in the cosmos, ordering it and giving it form. Jesus is the Logos – the Word of God – the principle of God active in the creation. ‘In the beginning was the Word’. If God is not also the God of Reason (as well as Love) he is just unmediated raw will, and his followers can slaughter, kill and burn. This god is thoroughly irrational, and can reverse his commands at any moment.

  • Ivan M

    How can anything like this be allowed in a Christian church? Of all things to allow a Muslim to question the Divinity of Jesus Christ is a serious assault on the fundamentals of the faith.

    • Wads42

      How do you think Muslims feel about Christian assaults upon Islam,-beginning with the Crusades?

      • Ivan M

        We should
        a) live with our differences,
        b) you are confusing different things. I do not expect to make it out in one piece, if I calculatedly assault the tenets of the Islamic faith in a mosque,
        c) the balance of bloodshed between Islam and Christianity is to the favour of Muslims; we owe them nothing.

      • Old Nick

        The Crusades were an attempt to ward off fresh Islamic aggression, following Manzikert – they were not gratuitous aggression. I would rather start with the razzia at Aqaba in 631 (recorded by Ibn Ishaq), followed by the Yarmuk, Qaddisiya, Nihawand and so forth leading up to Poitiers in 732.
        The original reason for modern people in the Near East getting exercized about the Crusades is that the French were unwise enough to use them to justify their activities in Syria and the Lebanon in the 19th century.

      • Anton

        As a response to several centuries of pro-active Islamic aggression against Western Europe, the Crusades were simply a matching response. It was wrong of the papacy to peddle them as a Christian jihad, though.

      • 1642again

        Islam launched unprovoked invasions and persecutions of the Christian Mediterranean littoral from the early 7th century, also Zoroastrian Persia, Buddhist Afghanistan and Northern India, and down through animist and Christian North Africa. There was no effective fightback until the rise of the Macedonian dynasty of the Byzantines in the 10th century and the Franks from the 8th in the West.

        The crusades were launched in response to the Byzantines’ appeal for western aid after defeat at Manzikert in 1079 which opened up the whole of Christian Asia Minor to Islamic conquest, and to the persecution of the Christian population of Palestine and pilgrims to Jerusalem by the Sunnis of Egypt.

        The Crusades were long overdue and entirely justified as acts of self-defence, and my only regret is that they failed.

        Where today are Christian inhabitants of Asia Minor and North Africa? Dead and gone through persecution and genocide. Read about the Armenian and Assyrian genocides by the Turks if you’ve got the nerve and intellectual honesty.

        • David Harkness

          Sorry 1642, should,ve read down to your post before setting finger to keyboard, you had already covered the main points, though manzikert was 1071, I think.

          • David Harkness

            Also look up bill Warner, jihad vs crusades on YouTube to get a feel for the real context of the crusades, and how brainwashed folks are who think that the crusades were a motivator for Islamic militarism.

          • 1642again

            Sorry if got the date wrong. Should have double checked.

          • magnolia

            I did the same immediate response without reading down! Still it shows something….

        • Wads42

          Yes I realize all that, but this is not a competition to between who knows more history. One does not need a perfect knowledge of anything (whether History, science, or indeed Gödel’s Theorem, to come to a rational conclusion. One just needs sufficient for the purpose. Islam embarked upon a career of conquest (just like the ancient Israelites), as soon as they suddenly realized that it was they after all, who were God’s Chosen People, ( and jesus was an imposter) and could therefore slaughter or enslave or tax into submission, all the Kaffirs, (who were actually just other human beings).
          And yes, apart from having read history, I also possess nerve and intellectual honesty. I do not believe in debate by swapping cheep jibes.

          • 1642again

            An opinion based on erroneus fact is not of value. Islam launched unprovoked aggression. The crusades were a too long delayed response.

      • Martin

        Actually they were a response to the Muslim invasions and incursions.

        • Wads42

          Yes I agree, but that does not make them into saints. When the First Crusaders captured Jerusalem they slaughtered 100,000 Moslems (no doubt for worshipping the “wrong” god),-as well as for political reasons of course. This is to be contrasted with Saladin later allowing Christians to leave peaceably after he had recaptured Jerusalem, (where was God?). Moreover, if the Crusaders were such victims why did they find it necessary to sack the great Christian Capital of Constantinople in 1209 while on the way to slaughter Muslims?–wrong god again, or just looting and bloodlust,–while praying to Jesus of course.
          What was that about getting a history book, David?

          • Pubcrawler

            “When the First Crusaders captured Jerusalem they slaughtered 100,000 Moslems”

            Source for that figure, please.

          • Wads42

            Sorry I cannot recall all references to everything all the time on demand. I am happy to concede with your above point that some were ransomed and the others enslaved, That was usual practice. I did not say Everyone walked out scot free.
            But at least it appears that they were not slaughtered.
            Those who claim that Muslims and Christians lived together peacefully for centuries (perhaps not you), never seem to mention the Christian’s Dhimmi status, and having to pay a (protection) tax as second-class citizens. Perhaps that came later?

          • bluedog

            1204.

          • Martin

            And which web site did you get that off?

            I do note that you’ve not repudiated my point.

          • Wads42

            Sorry if I missed something, I am losing track of all this correspondence, apart from also going out and doing other things. I try to respond to everything. What was your point? I may already have responded. No I don’t pinch second-hand material off other web-sites,-I have a substantial library of my own.

          • Martin

            So you make up history to fit your argument?

          • Albert

            I think you have a very questionable view of the crusades. Saladin had planned a massacre for Jerusalem, but the defenders threatened to sack the city, burn its treasures and slaughter the Muslim inhabitants. Thus Saladin had to give in to a peaceful surrender of the city. Saladin in character personally butchered captives (e.g. after the battle of Hattin). As his secretary puts it:

            Saladin ordered that they should be beheaded, choosing to have them dead rather than in prison. With him was a whole band of scholars and sufis and a certain number of devout men and ascetics, each begged to be allowed to kill one of them, and drew his sword and rolled back his sleeve. Saladin, his face joyful, was sitting on his dais, the unbelievers showed black despair.

            Now this evidence is not new. So why does it not feature in your account?

            Moreover, if the Crusaders were such victims why did they find it necessary to sack the great Christian Capital of Constantinople in 1209 while on the way to slaughter Muslims?

            It happened in 1204 not 1209 and was a disgrace. It’s the kind of thing that happens in war. It does not in any way alter the fact that the crusades originated as a war of self-defence and your suggestion that it does lacks evidence.

      • Pubcrawler

        Quite clearly they are indignant that we do not gladly submit to their prior aggression and assault.

      • Albert

        If IS had got their act together, and was pressing Europe through Turkey and Spain (having previously reached into France), then the West would fight to defend itself. And pretty well anyone who disagreed with that being a just cause would either be a pacifist or an Islamist. Which are you?

        • Wads42

          Actually I concede that the Crusades were in self defence, (apart from the absurd Children’s Crusade), but the fact is that all three Abrahamic religions were and are at each others throats, and Islam being “revised” Judaism was only doing what the ancient Israelites had done by way of conquest against (other) Canaanites, Ammonites, Moabites Edomites(later), Philistines, Midianites etc,–with the full later approval of Christians who inherited their mantle, and who consider it fine to worship bloodthirsty gods who inspire atrocities in their followers. Better to scrap the lot of them; I don’t think the sky would fall if you did.

          • Albert

            Thank you Wads42. I was right with you until this bit:

            with the full later approval of Christians who inherited their mantle, and who consider it fine to worship bloodthirsty gods who inspire atrocities in their followers. Better to scrap the lot of them

            What do you mean specifically (i.e. give an example) by, (i) It’s fine to worship bloodthirsty gods who inspire atrocities in their followers and (ii) scrap the lot of them?

          • Wads42

            Perhaps Hebrew atrocities against Canaanites, Midianites, Amalekites etc, the slaughter of babies and livestock, and “using” the women.. But of course all this was justified as they were God’s chosen people and had been given (other people’s) land for their own; how convenient. And it still goes on in modern Palestine.

          • Albert

            Perhaps Hebrew atrocities against Canaanites…

            Yes, but my question was about Christians saying it’s fine. You haven’t answered that. Secondly, you haven’t answered my other question: what do you mean by scrap the lot of them?

      • David Harkness

        You really need to get a history book.

        Islam was engaged on a military campaign to subdue Europe from the very beginning. They had to be repulsed from northern France in 732′ and they were still trying nearly 1000 years later when they were pushed back from Vienna in 1683. The crusades (justified as they were ) fade to insignificance against the backdrop of Islamic military expansions across Europe, Africa and Asia.

        • Wads42

          Yes I know that. It is all a question of who owns the land. It belongs to whoever is strong enough to occupy and hold it. The Jews were just one group among many. If we go back before the Muslims took over, we find Jerusalem “owned” by Byzantine Christians who inherited it from the “pagan” Romans who took it off the Jews, who had taken it back from the Seleucids, then there were Persians , Babylonians, Assyrians and Egyptians. Before that the Judahites had it when it was just an isolated village in the time of David and Solomon made it their “Capital”. Read “The Bible Unearthed” by Israel Finkelstein for more a more up-to-date history than what you find in the Bible. And don’t forget, Islam is just second-hand Judaism and Christianity, the same Abrahamic god under another name,–and all of them false.

          • bluedog

            ‘And don’t forget, Islam is just second-hand Judaism and Christianity,’ No, it isn’t. The god may seem the same to the religiously illiterate, but if you had bothered to read what Ashenden says, you would by now recognise that the metaphysics of Christianity and Islam are completely different.

      • bluedog

        On 18th October 2009, the Fatimid caliph ordered the destruction of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem, which was duly done. Built on orders of the Emperor Constantine following the work of his mother Helena in Jerusalem, the destruction of this church shocked Europe.

        One is tempted to suggested that if Christians had destroyed the Kabaa on 18th October 1009, we would still be reminded of the fact on an annual basis. Israel would be showered with rockets and the sound of feu de joie would echo through the cities of the West as the faithful discharged their AK 47s in the air, if not into the Christians.

        • Anton

          I think you mean 1009 not 2009 in your opening sentence!

          • bluedog

            Woops! Fixed.

      • magnolia

        Are you aware of the thousands of raids and assaults which took place from Islam before any Christian retaliation happened?

        Now, don’t get me wrong, retaliation is far from the best way. But to refuse to research what actually happened is not responsible. Are you aware that the fez is coloured red because so much Christian blood flowed that Muslim soldiers leant down and dipped their hats in it? Not exactly the chivalry some of the stories claim, is it? Wholesale slaughters occurred

      • BEGINNING with the Crusades? You do know Sir, don’t you, that the Crusades were a long delayed and proportionate defensive response to invasive Islamic Jihad?

  • len

    The enemy is within the church, what better way to destroy the remnants of Christianity?.

  • The Explorer

    Islam thinks it blasphemous to call Jesus the Son of God. The problem is, so does liberal theology. Well no, not blasphemous as such: liberal theology is not certain enough about the existence of God to want to call anything blasphemous. But misguided, certainly. From that premise. much follows.

  • Unbelievable! It is hard to know what else to say.
    Most days, I expect the Very Rev’d Holdsworth worries about falling attendances in his cathedral and denomination. But how can it be otherwise when the leaders of the Church are so cavalier with its most basic doctrines?
    650 years ago, Chaucer wrote, ‘If gold shall rust, what shall iron do?’ If those entrusted with the well-being and integrity of the Church not only fail to protect her, but actually participate in her destruction, how can anyone be surprised if the congregation decides that there really isn’t much point in them turning up?
    May I suggest to your readers a browse through Ezekiel 34? Let us be praying that the Lord will indeed rescue His flock from the wicked shepherds.

    • David

      Amen !

      • Roddy Neilson

        The congregation of St Mary’s Cathedral has been growing steadily since Kelvin Holdsworth was appointed Provost. Sorry to burst your bubble.

    • Dominic Stockford

      I doubt he cares much about falling attendances at his rituals, the people just get in the way of the ceremony – but he would be worried if the tourists stopped bringing in the shekels, the shop stopped selling tat, and the cafe’s takings were down.

      • Anton

        Taking a salary from the faithful, to peddle apostasy… I wouldn’t be him.

  • TIME to CTRL ALT & DEL

    How sad. We are living in the days just like before the exile. Beware the prophecey of Habakkuk will be fulfilled again in our day. The call of repentance should be coming loud.

    • Wads42

      So where is the Lord’s reply to Habakkuk’s second complaint? https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Habakkuk+1

      The Lord should not have bothered to raise up the neo-Babylonians,–they did not last long before the Cyrus the Persian conquered them. And as for occupying the whole Earth, they barely managed to get out of Mesopotamia. Didn’t God do geography at Theology College?

      • Anton

        They did occupy the whole ERETZ (Hebrew), meaning the whole of the land, meaning in context the whole of the Holy Land. Do you not know that ERETZ has two meanings?

    • orthodoxgirl

      It is. Our Blessed Mother has been calling for our repentance for years and years through her many visits to us. Jesus is begging us to turn back to Him and has been saying so also through His messages to Vassula Ryden, a Greek Orthodox mystic. We are heading to Hell in a handcart. If you wish to know more about His words to us in these times, visit http://www.tlig.org True Life In God. Then you will understand the urgency for the world to repent.

  • 1642again

    Sadly the Episcopalian Church of Scotland, along with the Church of Scotland, have passed into heresy. Next stop vague unitarianism on the way to humanism or conversion to Islam. The recent performance of the non-established episcopalian churches is a big argument for the retention of the CoE’s establishment status.

    • Martin

      Alternatively it could point to the inability of the episcopalian to hold fast to a doctrinal position.

      • 1642again

        Yawn.

        • Martin

          You can’t be telling me that the CoE is in a doctrinally sound state, surely.

  • IanCad

    What a truly exceptional guest post! A stirring testimony to the integrity and purpose of that in which we believe. Love and Truth. The former so well proclaimed in the first part of his post; the latter in the form of a firm rebuke to those would compromise the uniqueness of our Gospel by blending it with the writings of an alien faith.
    Yes! Christians and Muslims can co-exist. They did in Syria and elsewhere until we stuck our oar in. Both faiths can only live in harmony when they remain separate and free.
    The Rev’d Ashenden has given a reason for the faith that is in him. How very uplifting.

    • 1642again

      Christians co-existed in Syria because a secular dictator from a minority sect of Islam, which other Muslim’s call Nusayri (Little Christians) and would like to wipe out, needs the support of the prosperous and educated Christian minority (among others) to keep on top of the Sunni majority. Saddam’s Iraq was the same. Sunni Islam is the worst persecutor of Christians we have ever seen, even the Shi’ite Iranians fundamentalists are better. There is no enduring co-existence with Islam. Churchill knew it, any clear eyed historian can see it. It is light and dark through the ages.

      • IanCad

        My point exactly, and one the rulers in the West seem not to grasp.
        Majority rule and democracy are not always the best systems of governance.

  • Anton

    Would the Apostle Paul have approved of multifaith meetings? He wrote: What fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial?…What agreement is there between the temple of God and idols? For we are the temple of the living God…Be separate, says the Lord (from 2 Corinthians 6:14-17). How separate? We should befriend people of other faiths as we find them in our daily lives; we should unite with people of other faiths against secular evils such as pornographic sex education in schools; we should debate people of other faiths in front of uncommitted audiences (including online) so that the audience can see the Christian position set out and defended. But where is the good in taking part in multifaith gatherings in which people discuss their own religions amongst each other? If prayer is offered at such gatherings, to whom? When people say “I want you to respect my beliefs” the proper reply is “I respect you because you are a human being (in the image of God); in particular I respect your freedom of conscience to hold your beliefs; but I don’t agree with them or else I would hold them myself.” To make the point by an extreme example, I am called to love Nazis but not Nazism.

    I don’t know very much about Scottish church polity. Is the Provost the equivalent of the Dean?

    • Old Nick

      Yes because Scotch cathedrals were deemed Cathedrals of the New Foundation (i.e. not mediaeval) – though the C of E has now abolished that distinction in an act of unnecessary vandalism. When it is not necessary to change, it is necessary not to change.

      • Anton

        Thank you!

  • Andrew Holt

    I struggled for years with the question of whether God (Yahweh) and Allah were but two faces of the same deity. Since I settled to my satisfaction that it was not possible to reconcile the two I have been left with the enormous implications of this fact. Therefore what kind of spiritual being is Allah? A being who demands unquestioning obedience, sacrifices bomb transporting children, and encourages the loathing, subjugation and murder of Jews and Christians. This is a spiritual war and to allow such an act of surrender as the reading of this particular surah from the Koran is a monstrous act of betrayal and cowardice.

    • 1642again

      I would have thought it was immediately obvious. One of Allah’s epithets is ‘The Deceiver’, Christians call another spiritual being by this title, its name is Satan. But of of course the liberal clergy don’t believe in Lucifer or Hell any more do they, so no wonder they get confused?

      • orthodoxgirl

        They too have been duped by The Father of Lies and would rather peddle an agenda of universal love – there being no evil. No wonder we have such an unhappy world and a society that is struggling with all kinds of addictions, destructive behaviours and discontent. Dangerous stuff.

        • 1642again

          Satan’s greatest success – persuading humanity of his non-existence.

    • Anton

      Regarding the question “Is Allah Jehovah?”, it is important to clarify whether you are talking ontologically or epistemologically, because the following statements (made in an imaginary conversation) do not have the same content:

      1: Two volitional spirit beings exist, each claiming to have created the world; you worship one, whereas I worship the other.

      2. One volitional spirit being exists who claims to have created the world, but you and I have different ideas of his personality and his actions in human history.

      No.1 is different gods; no.2 is different human ideas of god, but is often spoken as “different gods”. That is why it is important to clarify whether the conversation is ontological or epistemological. The situation between Jews and Muslims is (2), not (1). In addition we Christians take Jesus to be equally divine, and we differ from both Jews and Muslims about that.

      The question “Same or different god?” fails to clarify between (1) and (2), which is why I think it is better not to answer it directly.

      Christians might then ponder what spiritual forces are behind the denial of Christ’s divinity and the distortion of the scriptures re (2). Answers to both issues can be found in the Bible.

      “Allah” is just the Arabic for “THE god”. It is a concatenation of al-illah, and illah in Arabic is equivalent to eloah in Hebrew, of which the plural is elohim, a name/title of God in the Old Testament (and a hint at the Trinity). Today, “Allah” has too much Islamic baggage to be part of a good translation into Arabic of the Old Testament.

      • Dominic Stockford

        Allah is NOT the same God – Christian Concern have a fantastic publication explaining in detail why this is – written by two ex-muslims.

        Further, Jesus is clear that you cannot KNOW the Father if you do not accept him. Denial of Christ Jesus is denial of God.

        • Anton

          Dominic, that is too simplistic a response. The question can’t be dealt with on a Yes/No basis for the reasons I’ve explained. Logically, there can be only one Creator of the universe; the question is which of the Quran and the Bible accurately depicts his personality and actions in the world. You and I agree which book that is, and I’m sure we would agree on what spirit is behind the distortions in the other book. Do not think that I am compromising.

          • Dominic Stockford

            A triune God and a mono god CANNOT be the same God. It is not ‘too simplistic’, it is just simple logic and fact.

          • Anton

            If I wanted to contend (which I don’t) then I’d ask “Do you mean epistemologically or ontologically?” Then I hope you’d see what I’m getting at. I entirely agree, of course, with your added comment above that “Jesus is clear that you cannot KNOW the Father if you do not accept him. Denial of Christ Jesus is denial of God.”

          • Wads42

            Is this the same as “you’ve got to believe it in order to believe it?”–which of course is a non-starter, as it can be applied to any proposition.

          • Anton

            No it isn’t the same. Please read my longer post above and let me know if you’d like the words ‘epistemological’ and ‘ontological’ explaining, which I’d gladly do.

        • Old Nick

          Of course there is a massive difference, and all Trinity Sunday sermons should point this out (instead of being handed to the curate, who can then say that theology does not really matter). This might be stated a mite more clearly by saying that Muslims think of Allah otherwise than Christians do – for instance as not being triune, incarnate, and so on. But Allaha/ Olloho is the name Oriental Orthodox Christians have always used for God when worshipping Him in Syriac. God is the name of the god locally known as God, and Allah is simply the Arabic for it.

    • Wads42

      You will be much happier and settled in your mind if you regard the whole notion as amusing fiction and become an atheist.

  • Wads42

    Very good Gavin; Now how about initiating another schism by having the Churches read out an Atheist/Humanist Manifesto from the pulpit?
    Reg the Atheist from Jersey.

    • Doctor Crackles

      Secularists are alive and well in the CofE. As always it is the true believers that are shunned and persecuted.

      Fond memories of the Hungry Man at Rozel

  • Dreadnaught

    “Let us insert into each other’s worship and prayers readings from our sacred scriptures which confront and contradict each others’ faith”, how would the Islamic community have responded? We will never know

    Ha-ha-ha-ha – I could hazard a guess; and so could you Dr Ashenden.

  • Doctor Crackles

    Ichabod

  • David

    What has happened is very serious indeed.

    Jesus being the Son of God is of course a crucial component of the Christian concept of the Triune God. It also supports the key doctrine of salvation or atonement, and much else.

    “Who is the liar but the one who denies that Jesus is the Christ ? This is the antichrist, the one who denies the Father and the Son” 1John 2 : 22.

    If the Provost intended for this sura to be read aloud in the Cathedral, that represents a very serious apostasy. In an ordained minister it is utterly unacceptable, constituting a sacking offence.

    If on the other hand he gave permission for this to occur, unwittingly, in ignorance of what would be said, then he must be naive to the point of gross incompetence. Surely he has access to a Koran ? If it is incompetence, then he should be gently retired.

    This event is either apostasy or incompetence and Christians need to know which. Discipline must be demonstrated.

    • 1642again

      Incompetence in any business leads to sacking after warning. If gross negligence, as in this case apparently, the result would be dismissal after a hearing. If the people involved knew she was intending to do this, it is dismissal for gross misconduct.

      I know the public sector likes to retire the disgraced and useless, but the Church needs to see itself as a private sector organisation and adopt it’s disciplines. It may not seek to make a financial profit, but it does aim to make a profit as measured by saved souls.

      • David

        My impression, certainly of the C of E, is that over decades discipline has virtually collapsed and people are never removed. Even straightforward blatant heresy attracts no sanction. The “niceness” factor of the C of E is one of its huge errors.

        • Wads42

          And so, back to the rack and burnings alive and the Index Librorum prohibitorum to ensure the compliance and obedience of the faithful?–back to the Dark Ages of faith, a pox on your hateful religion.

          • David

            Congratulations ! You’ve won first prize in hyperbole.

          • Pubcrawler

            Linus will be disappointed.

          • Wads42

            Gee thanks.

            Anyway I am going out soon, so you can all have a rest. pause for thought?

          • magnolia

            What about your hateful materialism? Scientific materialism and social darwinism, which is all you offer, indeed, all you can offer, stink, and create thorough-going nastiness I want nothing of.

            To hell with the world, the flesh, and the devil!

          • Wads42

            There is nothing hateful about Materiallist Philosophy which concludes that Monism is the correct conclusion, not Substance Dualism or Property Dualism, which are the false inventions of Plato and Descartes,-which has sowed epistemological confusion by inventing a parallel “spiritual” world alongside the real physical (material) one. I think you are confusing materialism with crude capitalist consumerism.
            Social Darwinism, as well as biological evolution are real facts of Nature, whether you like it or not. The world is a dangerous and tough place’ only the fittest survive. We do not enjoy this,-we wish everyone was lovey- dovey,–but we can improve. As Prof Dawkins says, “we can rise above our genes” and override their effects upon our natural violent tendencies; that is what secular humanist philosophy is all about.
            You don’t have to be so bitter and twisted just because not everyone agrees with you. Aren’t you supposed to be ecstatic and “saved”?

          • magnolia

            No, I am not confusing materialism with consumerism, though they clearly intersect. Social darwinism is not a fact of nature, though if it were your hero Darwin, with his marriage to a first cousin, lots of children, and no grandchildren, was not very successful in the all-important aspect of passing the fit genes on, was he?

            The ideas which come out of social Darwinism, Francis Galton et al are horrid- eugenicism, abortion, Nazism, apartheid, euthanasing the handicapped, and population control through many pestilential means, plus any “dog eat dog” aspects of financial dealings in which the lesser bright are said to deserve fleecing, by innumerable internet posters, because they do not deserve to be in the gene pool. And you wonder why I hate it?

            Human beings, whether you like it or not, though you ought to like it, are primarily spiritual beings, and eternal ones.

            If you are stuck down a dark and gloomy well you don’t get out by “rising above your genes” you need someone to rescue you from outside. That is the human condition. You need someone indeed who is both fully human and fully divine to rescue you. Once you are rescued you may be glad for a time, but if you see there are others down there you will ask your rescuer to help them too. If they pretend it is fine down the well you will feel irritated, and if they say the fittest will survive, and it’s fine to push others under to give themselves more space you just may not be a great fan…you may say their attitudes lead to them remaining in a dark place…that’s not twisted.

          • Wads42

            When I say social Darwinism is a fact, I mean that is how humans behave. I did not say I condone social engineering, abortion etc; and neither did Darwin; no civilised person does,. The Nazis attempted it, and were rightly suppressed.
            Your example about Darwins genetic misfortunes merely confirm my point about how were are at the mercy of our genes. The solution is to try and overcome it by not interbreeding inappropriately. They did not know this in mid-Victorian times. Darwin himself knew nothing of genes and DNA; that knowledge came later. He was a victim of natural selection, just as we all are,-and as you say, was not the fittest person around, or the best adapted to his particular environment.
            You talk about “dog eat dog”, but also claim we are “spiritual eternal beings”,–whatever that means Do you really think an angel or God will pluck you out of the way of a lorry when you cross the road with your eyes closed in blind faith? No, that lorry will winnow you out ;–that is natural selection in action. You have to look out for yourself; no-one from “outside” will save you, –except your friends and kin,-maybe.
            As I tried to explain first time- the world is cruel, and if you are maladapted because you rely on a non-existent helper instead of your own senses and those of other humans,–then you will be swept away. Being “fit” to survive just means being careful, rational-and lucky.

    • orthodoxgirl

      Well said David!! AMEN.

    • Dominic Stockford

      It is clearly heresy, for no true Christian would allow such a thing.

      • David

        Agreed !

      • Wads42

        So burn him!

  • There are ways of setting about creating a deeper trust between Christians and Muslims

    Please read the following extracts from Reliance of the Traveller, the book of Islamic law:

    w4.1 (2) Previously revealed religions were valid in their own eras, as is attested to by many verses of the Holy Koran, but were abrogated by the universal message of Islam, as is equally attested to by many verses of the Koran. Both points are worthy of attention from English-speaking Muslims, who are occasionally exposed to erroneous theories advanced by some teachers and Koran translators affirming these religions’ validity but denying or not mentioning their abrogation, or that it is unbelief (kufr) to hold that the remnant cults now bearing the names of formerly valid religions, such as ‘Christianity’ or ‘Judaism’, are acceptable to Allah Most High after He has sent the final Messenger (Allah bless him and give him peace) to the entire world. This is a matter over which there is no disagreement among Islamic scholars.

    To Muslims, Christianity and Christians are worthless and any apparent trust is nothing more than a strategic deception by Muslims:

    r8.2 If a praiseworthy aim is attainable through both telling the truth and lying, it is unlawful to accomplish through lying because there is no need for it. When it is possible to achieve such an aim by lying but not by telling the truth, it is permissible to lie if attaining the goal is permissible and obligatory to lie if the goal is obligatory.

    • David

      The Islamic doctrine of taqiyya – “justified” deception to spread Islam.

    • Dominic Stockford

      They teach, and believe, that the Bible is a perverted lie, changed over the years and therefore totally untrustworthy. It is impossible to debate faith with a muslim as they eventually end up denying the Bible from which we argue (just like any unbeliever of course).

      • @ Dominic Stockford—Yes, under the heading ‘Belief in Allah’s Inspired Books’, Reliance of the Traveller states:

        u3.4 To believe in His inspired Books means those which He revealed to His messengers, believe meaning to be convinced that they are the word of Allah Most High, and all they contain is the truth. The obligation of belief applies to the original revelations, not the various scriptures in the hands of non-Muslims, which are textually corrupt in their present form.

        • Wads42

          So if all Holy Books are inspired, which of the Inspirations is the most inspired?–and how would you know?-and what actually is the nature of the inspiration?-information on the origin of the Universe, of Life of Destiny?–where are the answers which you purport to provide?

          • @ Wads42—which of the inspirations is the most inspired?
            It would be a lacklustre religion which did not assert that its own sacred texts were the most inspired.

            what is the nature of the inspiration?
            Russell Gmirkin argues that Genesis was based on Berossus’ Babyloniaca and Exodus on Manetho’s Aegyptiaca. He writes that Exodus ‘shows considerable knowledge of Manetho’s accounts regarding Hyksos and expelled Egyptians, showing systematic agreement with Manetho in all details favorable or neutral to the Jews but containing polemics against precisely those points in Manetho that reflected unfavorably on the Jews.’

          • Wads42

            Yes it would; but then are you saying that a religion should just be entertaining rather than factually true?
            Yes Manetho was very vexed about the humiliation of the Hyksos kings’ invasion of Egypt after the end of the Middle Kingdom. After the Egyptians of the 17th Dynasty expelled them and chased them back to Canaan, they established the New Kingdom.
            I have always maintained (along with Finkelstein), that there was no mass Exodus of Hebrews around the 13th century BCE, but that the story is a folk memory of the earlier exodus of the expelled Hyksos shepherd-kings around the 16th century BCE by Pharoah Ahmose 1st, (whose mummy has been found , and shows severe battle head wounds)
            The memories of “parting of the water” would have been the effects of a tsunami which reached the coast of Egypt, caused by the explosive eruption of Santorini in the Aegean , geologically dated to around 1628 BCE; the same one that destroyed the Minoan civilisation on Crete,–and no doubt drowned people on or near the Egyptian coast,-maybe including some fleeing Hyksos, and the Egyptian soldiers chasing them.
            There were probably also later eruptions which were seen much later on by Elijah in the 8th century BCE, when he reported “a black cloud, like a man’s hand, on the horizon”, (and thought it was God). So either God was in a boat far out at sea in the direction of the Aegean,–or it was the smoking volcano.

      • Wads42

        Have you ever tried investigating genuine Higher Biblical Criticism?–or do you automatically believe everything written in a big gold encrusted impressive book endorsed by lying priests?

        • Anton

          I have. Name one you trust and why.

          • Wads42

            Well I have not studied it for quite a while, but The Jesus Seminar rings a bell, and the Documentary Hypothesis.
            Also one can regard a book which I mentioned earlier and is a recent publication; “Unearthing the Bible”, by Israel Finkelstein (and someone else),–as Biblical criticism, using recent archaeological finds (and lack of them), and linguistic analysis, and comparisons with contemporary Assyrian records in cuneiform script, some of them found in the library of King Assurbanipal in Nineveh.
            besides, I trust no-one; and as I am a Doctor, not an antiquarian (except as a hobby), I have to compare the wrings of many different modern authors on the subject,-so as not to be lead astray by any particular one with an axe to grind.
            My first ever foray into the subject was reading: “The Bible as History”, when I was a teenager. It was fascinating to read the Genesis account of the Flood alongside an independent source, in “The epic of Gilgamesh”.

          • Anton

            Higher critics are liable to suggest that ancient Old Testament figures were not real people and were invented to make points, even though much irrelevant detail is given about their lives. In questioning the Book of Genesis the leading liberal name is Julius Wellhausen, who claimed to discern four strands in the Pentateuch, which supposedly have been combined in the biblical text. This ‘documentary hypothesis’ was demolished by PJ Wiseman, who recognised that Genesis is a compiled sequence of ancient texts that had originally been written on stone tablets. Many stone tablets from Mesopotamia, dated as old as Abraham and Noah, have been found, and they have their own writing conventions, which Wiseman recognised within Genesis. The retaining of those conventions by the compiler – presumably Moses, who also wrote the last part of Genesis, set in Egypt – shows that he copied faithfully. Moses added the names of places which had changed name by his time, but that is all. We even know who each tablet was written by (or for), because the earlier, Mesopotamian parts of Genesis each end (not begin!) with the phrase “These are the toledoth of…” and toledoth means “historical origins”. Each section runs up close to the death of the man named yet never reaches it, and each section gives information which only that man could have known or found out reliably. Wiseman’s work deserves to be better known.

          • Wads42

            I think this Wiseman fellow, of whom I have never heard until now (perhaps because he is not taken seriously),-sounds a bit of a religious crackpot. Yes I was trying to recall the name “Wellhausen”, in connection with the Documentary hypothesis. To my mind it seems far more plausible that the different dual versions of creation accounts and Commandments in Genesis, is to be explained by alternative versions which developed in the split-up Israelite kingdoms of Israel and Judah after about 950 BCE in the times of Jeroboam and Rehoboam respectively.
            To try and go back to stone tablets written in an un- identified language in the time of Abraham (?1900 BCE?), or even Noah (who knows when?) is just plain absurd.
            What language was used?-Akkadian?, Canaanite?, proto-Hebrew?, Egyptian?–you do not say. Literacy generally was sparse in Palestine until about 8 or 9th century BCE. The earliest known writing in early Hebrew dates only from about 1000 BCE I believe,-but then I don’t claim to be an expert.
            On the other hand the Epic of Gilgamesh goes back to perhaps about 2500 BCE and was probably first written in Akkadian, and as you know, it gives an account of Gilgamesh;s search for “Utnapistim” (:?the original “Noah”). There are also other named flood-survivors,.
            The “Flood” of course refers to a local flood in southern Mesopotamia, (a damp place permeated by two large leaky rivers, connected by irrigation canals and emptying into the Persian Gulf),–a place just crying out for natural regular floodings,-ie -not world-wide,-like covering Mount Everest!!–anyway the Egyptians seemed to survive, and they do not mention it, and they wrote down everything. It was probably just a large puddle after a bad thunderstorm.

          • Anton

            You might consider reading Wiseman before deciding that he is a “crackpot”. Dismissing that which you don’t understand puts you in a poor light. I consider Wellhausen as blatantly agenda-driven for claiming to be able to disentangle four strands in the Pentateuch with accuracy down to individual verses.

        • Dominic Stockford

          I was forced to endure the nonsense of higher biblical criticism by those you call priests – the Church of Rome. However, the Bible is not there to be judged by us, we should allow it to judge us.

          And, with a mere 92 comments over the last few days, it is clear you are an ‘interesting’ package.

          • Wads42

            I am sure priests would turn any criticism of their precious bible into nonsense.
            To paraphrase:; “the Law is written for Man, -not Man for the Law”.

            Thanks for the compliment, –I hoped I was not boring you. After a while I feel like a change, and go off and annoy someone else.

  • len

    King Nebuchadnezzar made an image of gold, sixty cubits high and six cubits wide, and set it up on the plain of Dura in the province of Babylon.(Daniel 2) (Babylon is the very image of Idolatry)

    Each part of the body of the image represents different Kingdoms in descending order.

    The two legs represent (IMO) Rome and Constantinople (Istanbul) two parts of the same Kingdom, Constantine moved the capital Rome to Constantinople.

    What we are witnessing today is the joining of a false type of Christianity to Islam.Movements towards this have already been made by the RCC. The connection will be made with the common regard for the Catholic ‘Mary’ held in high regard by the Catholics and Muslims alike.It can be no coincidence that Mohamed s daughter ‘Fatima’ and the place where ‘the miracles’ occurred are connected?.

    • Dominic Stockford

      The current (and to some extent previous) popes’ rather lax and welcoming attitude towards Islam is a great concern, or should be, for the thinking man.

      • Anton

        Yes, John Paul II kissed a copy of the quran in the presence of Muslims on 14th May 1999. Pictures of the event are all over the internet.

        • Wads42

          Is that worse than Gavin rubbing noses with the Pope a few months ago?

          • Anton

            Ask him, not me!

    • Wads42

      How come everyone BC was clairvoyant, even non -Jews? Did Nebuchadnezzar presciently know about the Roman Empire, (from 27 BC) and Constantinopolis )from about 313 BC)? I wish I could do that. I would win the lottery for starters.

      • Wads42

        I mean 313 Ad

        • bluedog

          A truly progressive secularist would have said 313CE. Is your purity already contaminated by exposure to this site? Be more careful.

          • Wads42

            Yes I know that, I was trying not to be too clever, and old habits die hard anyway.
            –and I should also have said 27 BCE

          • bluedog

            Old habits? Tradition? The superstition that is religion? Away with this sentimentality. To paraphrase the words of the greatest PM since the anti-fascist war, a new Britain is being forged in the white heat of the cultural revolution. May you be the WD40 that oils the wheels of progress.

  • Martin

    I’d say that God’s attributes of love and power are held balanced, indeed so is His Justice and all the other attributes of God. God is not vulnerable, He is above all power, yet loves His Creation, is just but tempers His justice with mercy.

    So what, indeed, was one who claims to be a Christian minister doing allowing a heathen reading at what was supposed to be a Christian service? Trying to bring together the communities? Does he not know there can be no unity between darkness and light?

    Is this not the great error of the Anglicans, and others, the seeking of unity when there is none?

    Christianity is about having a message, a message of salvation for the sinner, the only message of salvation. There is no other way that through Christ Jesus. Islam cannot save, nor
    can any other religion, save that which God created.

    So what should we do for the Muslim, save tell him of the gospel, that Jesus died for sinners and he is a sinner. If you want dialogue, then debate, destroy all the arguments of the Qur’an. Do it respectfully, honestly, using his book as you would expect him to use the Bible.

    The fortresses of the enemy must be broken down, we do not do that by allowing him into our churches.

    • David

      He is a God of love, but also of justice. The two act together. That’s my reading of The Bible.

    • Wads42

      So

      • Could you please stop this silly manner of posting comments? Bless you.

        • Wads42

          Apologies; it was not intentional. Please tell me how to delete them, I can’t find out how.

          • Wads42

            Hurrah!-done it!

    • Wads42

      thn

    • Wads42

      by

    • Wads42

      your

      • Wads42

        Hurrah!-done it!

    • Wads42

      attitude

    • Wads42

      you

    • Wads42

      are

    • Wads42

      forever

    • Wads42

      condemned

    • Wads42

      to

    • Wads42

      spilt

    • Wads42

      humanity

    • Wads42

      up

    • Wads42

      So then, by your attitude you are forever condemned to split humanity up into cultural ghettos and warring factions, -all hating each other,–to date, about 45,000 different sects. It would be funny if it wasn’t so pitiable.

      • Anton

        Not that mistake again by people who don’t check their sources! A while ago it was 25,000 denominations, a claim traceable back to the World Christian Encyclopedia compiled by David Barrett in 1982. Its second edition (Oxford Univ Press, 2001) refers to 33000+ total Christian denominations, but it defines the word ‘denomination’ as an organised Christian group within a specific country. That is an eccentric use of the word, for denominations run across national borders. Who would say that the Roman Catholic church in Canada and the USA are different denominations?

        As there are several hundred countries (and as smaller denominations are not represented in all of them) we should divide the figure of 25,000 by about 100. This gives a few hundred genuine denominations, consistent with the list recorded in Wikipedia:

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_denominations_by_number_of_members

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_denominations

        Please check your sources.

        • Wads42

          Yes I concede that the number varies wildly depending upon the source you are viewing at the time. Most one the ones I have seen so far vary between about 25,000 and nearly double that number. The actual number is unimportant. To me,-one extra Christian sect, denomination or whatever you would like to call it,–is one too many, in a creed which boasts about being the one and only Universal Truth.
          Naturally you would choose the lowest possible number so as to support your own Faith. Right from its inception Christian factions were at war, Docetists, Donatists, Monophysites, Diophysites, etc etc. Does Jesus have a Divine or a Human Nature?
          Is he all God or all Man,-or half and half or both simultaneously, and it what proportions,–and how do you know anyway?
          And so it goes on throughout the “Dark Ages, and medieval periods. Michael Servetus, Savonarola, Giordano Bruno, Latimer, Ridley, Cranmer, burned at the stake,-and for what?– the wholly Universal religion of Love?
          (If I make the odd factual error, I am not perfect, I am quoting from memory; and at nearly 74 perhaps I am just starting to leave my prime?)

          • Wads42

            O dear, I mean I am nearly 77;–the brain is going!

          • Anton

            I’ve sympathy for anybody who grows old but if you can no longer take the heat of debate then it would be better not to enter the kitchen. Because you didn’t check how your sources compiled that figure, you were out by a factor of approximately 100, or 10,000%.

            What you actually find in the New Testament is a church that comprises a congregation in each town, run autonomously under God, ie with no hierarchy above it that is connected to the political authorities. I deplore politicised Christianity as much as you do; the authentic faith is about changing people for the better in ways they cannot do for themselves. Please notice that with the decentralised structure there can be no such thing as denominations.

          • CliveM

            “I’ve sympathy for anybody who grows old”

            Really, as the alternative is premature death, I fail to see why:0)

          • Wads42

            I thought in every town you find a multitude of different denominational Churches,–why?

          • Anton

            Because the original church deviated from the Bible by developing a hierarchy above individual congregations. This meant that theological fallings-out led to rival hierarchies, ie denominations.

          • bluedog

            ‘(If I make the odd factual error, I am not perfect, I am quoting from memory; and at nearly 74 perhaps I am just starting to leave my prime?)’

            Sadly it seems you have learned nothing of the human condition in your long life, and you continue to promote ideas that have brought misery to millions and deserve to be rejected.

            Your problem is largely cultural. Like so many of the western elites you have become utterly divorced from the lower orders you instinctively despise. You share none of their interests and aspirations and you lecture to them, and to us here, not to persuade, but as an ego trip to remind yourself of your own genius.

            Is that all you have left?

      • Martin

        No, there are two, the Christian and the non Christian.

        • Wads42

          Yes as I said, warring factions. Tell me ,–which is it, “Onward Christian soldiers” ?-or Christian love,–and I mean “Love” of all mankind, not just various Christian sects.?

          • Martin

            And you imagine you aren’t a warring faction?

            Of course, our love for you is demonstrated in the way we remind you that you know God exists.

          • Wads42

            Well it is all relative. We see ourselves as being warred against, and our response is self-defence and defence of The Enlightenment, Reason, Logic, Science, Evolution, Naturalism. It is these, especially Naturalism that inspired Gavin Ashenden to launch an unprovoked attack against atheists, especially me, and it was unprovoked; I was just trying to live a quiet naturalistic heathenish life. Well, being touchy I could not let that pass, and I riposted vigorously,-several times. I am sure you don’t mind, Gavin, if you are there,-but it is true isn’t it? (I like you really).
            I can of course understand that you Christians think you are the injured parties, and I am the aggressor;–all relative. The Muslims think the same,-that they are victims of your aggression, while you think you are victims of their aggression. I can’t really see a way out of the impasse.
            Except that you seem to claim authenticity because you have chronological priority; there were Believers before there were Unbelievers (just). But another way to look at it is that knowledge evolves, and earlier accounts become obsolete; (the Muslims agree and state that their religion is up-to-date, and yours is obsolete, antiquated and redundant. We secularists say that we have evolved to a higher plane of Enlightenment, scientific and social knowledge, and that early claims by Jews, Christians (and Muslims) are all false and should be scrapped,–just like discarded scientific theories like the Luminiferous aether, phlogiston, Cold fusion, Spiritualism, homeopathy.
            The whole problem is that you want to maintain a religious ghetto, and draw up a lager to defend yourselves against a world that has evolved and moved on.
            You are a species in line for extinction,–like the 995 species of biological organism that are now all extinct,–as well as all the ancient religions and their gods. Only one more (Abrahamic god to go,-then we might be free of them forever.

          • bluedog

            ‘We secularists say that we have evolved to a higher plane of Enlightenment, scientific and social knowledge’

            Delete ‘Enlightenment’, insert ‘Consciousness’ and we can see who and what you really are.

            You say of Christians, ‘You are a species in line for extinction,–‘ But where is the evidence for that? Communism has become extinct and was never introduced democratically. Like Islam, it comes to the people through force. For reasons you will never understand, the proletariat rejected the leadership of you and your fellow intellectuals, they left The Party and joined the consumer society.

            Of the trinity you mention above, what has secularism given us in terms of ‘social knowledge’:

            1) The commodification of sex
            2) The destruction of the family
            3) A sustained assault on the male and fatherhood
            4) The promotion of homosexuality as a valid lifestyle
            5) The denial of the complementarity and essential difference between the sexes.

            Progress, or the road to oblivion? It’s the latter.

          • Wads42

            I was referring to the socio/philosophical Enlightenment Movement of the 18th/19th century, mainly in England, Scotland, France, and which includes the Scientific revolution, with luminaries like Hume, Locke, Berkeley, J.S Mill, and the French Encyclopaedists, and Voltaire, Thomas Paine, and the founding fathers of the U.S.-not some personal mental revelation featuring “consciousness”; -and yes, it is for the “chosen?”, few; the proletariats, plebeians, common people etc cannot cope with intellectualism because they are generally disadvantaged, poor and uneducated, (and encouraged to be so by the wealthy, including the Churches).
            All the statistics show that religion generally is declining in the civilised, educated “enlightened” West,–even the hyper-religious US. I am sure you will mention China and other developing ( and underdeveloped ) countries. In China it grows, relatively, but it is still a small proportion of the population.
            Religion appears to die off in the centre as it expands at the periphery,–just like “fairy rings”,-those growths of fungus you sometimes see on grass lawns; it must be a mathematical law.

          • Wads42

            Continued: You criticise secularism (of course) and ask what it has contributed to social knowledge, I would not call it “knowledge”, but rather social mores and practices. Yes there is social evolution which is changing all the old values. But surely world wide communication and the Internet has contributed more to this than simply giving up Jesus and Christianity,-which has never had more than a superficial hold on society anyway, despite being applied by force and discrimination from above, (I mean the State/ Church alliance)- not God.
            Besides most people still think of themselves as “spiritual” and sort-of religious in a diluted and altered way,-so religion is still around,-yet all your complaints as in the above list,have not been cured; so there must be other factors: The Internet, more education, increasing wealth and prosperity and a desire for freedom and independence (including from God and Church)), and the ability to experiment with their sexuality, and their family relationships, and the greater empowerment of women (representing half the human race).
            To use a religious metaphor, they have tasted of the Tree of Knowledge, and there is no going back: Get used to it.

          • bluedog

            ‘I would not call it “knowledge”, but rather social mores and practices. ‘

            But you did call it ‘social knowledge’. My use of the term is taken directly from your post. Yet you now deny your own comment!

            You also say, ‘You criticise secularism (of course) and ask what it has contributed…’ There is no question in my post, merely a number of specific accusations.

            As for the metaphoric ‘Tree of Knowledge’, one can guess that it stands in the grounds of The Frankfurt School, itself in the Vale of Tears.

          • Martin

            You have made yourself a rebel against God, so of course you will be warred against. When someone takes up arms against their rightful ruler they can expect warfare. So stop whinging that you want to live a quiet life, you have chosen war and war you shall have.

            As for the Muslims, you really need to learn a bit of history, they were the aggressors against both Jerusalem and Europe. They also fail to represent what Christians believe, so clearly they’re not what they claim to be, their Qur’an is not the revelation of God.

            Sorry, but you don’t even get the science bit right, most of the early scientists were Christians and it is Christianity that lays the foundation for science. Nor can you claim the support of science for your position.

          • Wads42

            But I have never received any communication from God whatever, neither hostile nor benevolent. No, it is you human Christians who declare war on unbelievers. Statistics show that you are becoming a dinosaur-like minority, which means that warring against the rest of mankind is not just an error, but an impertinence.
            Not the old “you should read history “canard again?–Please give it a rest.

            The foundations of science began with the Greeks, specifically the pre-Socratic Milesian Materialists, and Atomists like Epicurus and Democritus. It was continued by Archimedes, Aristotle, Claudius Ptolemy. Hippocrates, Galen,–until largely suppressed by Christians who thought it inimical to faith. The dissection of bodies for medical studies was forbidden by both Christians and Muslims.
            It was only during the Renaissance and Enlightenment that Church influence began to lose its grip, and intellectuals began to seek knowledge for its own sake, in comparative safety from religious persecution. They were indeed nominal Christians,–everyone was. By the time the Inquisition had finished with dissidents, Christianity was the only show left in town,–so of course they claimed credit for all knowledge. Advances were made in the face of Church opposition; see Copernicus, Galileo, Giordano Bruno, who were persecuted,– threatened with torture and given House arrest,- and burned alive -respectively.
            How’s that for history?

            Anyway, I am starting to have to repeat myself to every comer, and it is taking up too much of my time,-so I think I shall leave you at this point, as there is nothing more to add and I have things to do.
            I have enjoyed chatting to you. Bye.

          • Martin

            What you think is Christianity isn’t. Christians have always been in a minority and the Church is those Christians, not an organisation. Christians didn’t suppress the Grecian intellectuals, they collapsed under their own corruption, like Rome. The foundation for all science, for science can only be done when a stable Universe is investigated in a honest way, is Christianity.

            Galileo was punished, not for what he said but for how he said it. And in any case, he wasn’t punished by Christians. You will note that those who go against the accepted scientific paradigm often find persecution from their fellows, the attitude to Creationism is a modern example.

            And so we see that modern science is in danger of collapsing under its own corruption.

        • Wads42

          I tried to delete them; don’t know how; it just happened. I will try again. Sorry.

          • Wads42

            Hurrah!–done it!

  • saintmark

    Will there be a reading of the Gospels or any of the New Testament in the mosque this Friday??

    • orthodoxgirl

      Hah! Dream on 😉 They would probably (sadly) burn the Christian Bible.

      • Wads42

        –and good riddance say I.

        • magnolia

          clearly from a position of rank ignorance.

          Instead you propose a “dog eat dog” world where petty squabbles persist over worldly goods, and worldly services, for there is nothing else

          • Wads42

            No you don’t understand; we are Humanists, scientists and philosophers,–a real and effective Trinity,-and also biblical historians. Islam and Christianity are upstart plagiarising and eclectic religions going back only 2000 years and less. Humanism and Humanity have been practicing secular morality for tens of thousands of years and more.
            See the Instruction of Ptah-hotep around the time when the pyramids were being built, and the later Instruction of Amenemope,–before Moses. Then we have deontological ethics from Confucius,-who was among the first to say “Do as you would be done by”,-then the Virtue ethics of Aristotle,-practicing “excellence”, and then consequentialist or utilitarian ethics, and Buddhist Compassion–all secular and rational.
            What do Christians have by contrast?–I’ll tell you; Carrot and stick morality, scapegoat morality (killing an innocent for the imaginary sins of the “guilty”.), and damnation to Hell-fire for disobedience or answering back;–the inversion of the meaning of words (equivocation), so as to re-label Hate as “Love”, and vice versa, and spiteful retaliation against “”heretics”;–see the awful lynching of the Stoic Philosopher and mathematician, Hypatia in Alexandria in 415 AD. Edward Gibbon gives an account of it based on the contemporary account of Ammianus Marcellinus in his “Decline and Fall”.
            As for the persistence of petty squabbles,-how about Original Sin?–still arguing over Adam and Eve and their silly apple in the Garden of Eden.

          • magnolia

            I’m afraid you don’t understand, from the absurd “Trinity” onwards. The Christian doctrine of the Trinity has nothing to do with lumping three abstract nouns together that have a small degree of intersection and plonking them down simultaneously on the semantic table.

            Much huff and puff has happened about the pyramids. The acme of architecture they are not. Vaguely impressive but functionally useless, and a great waste of human lives given building them. (Their religious ideas have large areas of grim which I am astonished that you countenance.) Give me Western Christian architecture over these sand piles over dead bodies any time.

            Judaism, which you appear to fluctuate between using to bash Christians, and bashing in its own right when you found a more primitive idea, has roots long predating Moses. As for Aristotle, I am surprised that you regard him as a modern atheist since he believed in an “unmoved mover” Creator, and his doctrine of the mean has been regarded with enthusiasm by many a Christian theologian.

            You are used to discussing these things without having gone through any disciplined study of the discipline in question using the right methodology. Thus your work smacks of nurture in the echo-chamber of sour cherry-picking, of decontextualised brickbat-throwing, and of the arrogance of some of the atheistic scientific community which exists within the delusion that their discipline is the highest and they can do the others carelessly in a few minutes of spare time with sheer dazzling brilliance. It isn’t so, and phrases like “l’ll tell you” followed by a straw man argument is not seemly in respectable academic circles. No one here has ever suggested putting anyone to death for heresy, indeed the most anger and most violent words towards others of differing views are your own towards Christians. Get a grip.

          • Wads42

            I expect accidents happened during the building of the pyramids, as in any large project. The worshippers were not slaves, but employed labour while the Nile was in flood and nothing else to do. It was a labour of love for their god-pharoah,-(until they became disillusioned at the end of the Old Kingdom.)
            The Negative Confession of Ptah-hotep, around 2500 BC I think, mentions “God” a lot, but the moral code is secular and consequentialist. ” I have not killed” etc.
            Of course this was millennia and centuries before Yahweh, Abraham and the Israelites were ever thought of. Maybe ancient Egyptians were God’s original Chosen People? (Just like nearer our own time, the Puritans of the Mayflower, and the (white, racist) Afrikaners of South Africa also fancied themselves as chosen people. All pride and vanity.

          • magnolia

            For Christians it is no surprise if some remnants of “natural grace” shine like small lights in the darkness of some fairly dark creeds, because we are all made in the image and likeness of God.

            There were even glimmerings of monotheism amongst the Pharaohs. Some of what you admire is distinctly grim however. One of the noticeable differences between the Jews and the other people of the world was the lack of human sacrifice and cannibalism, probably not complete, but 99.8% or more.

            Whilst the Jewish people were “chosen” to be a purifying people, it was always intended to spread out to all the nations. Jesus was Jewish, and Christianity is a continuation not a deviation, with clear roots in Judaism.

          • Wads42

            Yes, as you know, Akhenaten (Amenhotep IV) went off and established his own monotheistic worship of the Aten, and greatly annoyed the priests of the official religion of Amun-Ra. It did not last; his son Tut ankh Aten, changed his name back to Tut ankh Amun (Living image of Amun).
            At least one of the biblical psalms originates from Egypt.

          • Wads42

            I think your criticism of pyramids is a bit unfair. The step-pyramid of Sakkara was the first and therefore oldest stone-building in the world, and evolved from earlier flat mastabas, around 2900 BC when Imhotep realized he could build an impressive structure by piling diminished-sized mastabas on top of each other. They are not just piles of rubble, but intricate and complex structures with many rooms and passages, and often decorated with hieroglyphic funeral texts. They were the archetypes of all later stone building everywhere, and were stable structures before separate stone columns had been pioneered. Christian cathedrals evolved from Egyptian, Greek and Roman structures of ever evolving sophistication.
            Things usually start simple eg Life_, and evolve to become complex. Everything has to start somewhere. The pyramids have survived most other buildings; the architects were true pioneers.

          • bluedog

            Great post, magnolia, much enjoyed; and your other posts in reply to comment by Wads42 as well.

          • Wads42

            You are putting words into my mouth(a common rhetorical device).
            1. I did not attempt to define the Christian Trinity,-I merely suggested an alternative secular one (tongue in cheek).
            2. I did not say Judaism started with Moses, and am aware that Abraham worshipped his own version of a monotheistic desert sky-god long before Moses, and I don’t think canonical Judaism had yet been invented.
            3. I did not say Aristotle was an atheist,-I merely pointed to his Virtue Ethics. His notion of a Prime Mover was not so much an external “God”, but rather that he believed Motion is intrinsic to Matter itself,–which is much closer to the modern scientific view.
            4, You are using the fallacious “Courtier’s Reply” by suggesting I have not used the “right” methodology, and am therefore not qualified to give an opinion.
            5. You are resorting to clever abuse in order to cheapen your debate opponents.
            I make no straw-man arguments, and I know that no-one on this site has suggested putting me or anyone else to death for heresy; are you suggesting that therefore “heretics” have never in fact been put to death for heresy,-ever,-throughout history by Catholic and Protestant Churches? You need to read real history, as well as taking heed of the mote in your own eye.
            6. And finally consider,-that none of these silly pointless time-wasting exchanges would be necessary without pushy evangelists wanting to conquer the world for Jesus (and Islam),–and instead we could just get on with trying to improve the human condition.

          • magnolia

            Not going to reply to all your points, as it is timewasting to do so. But the main objection stands.

            In order to effectively make a tongue in cheek comparison to the Trinity you need to understand Trinitarian theology and the shape and intersectedness of it. In order to posit a secular mirror of it you need to posit things which have no interlap with Christianity. “Philosophy” or “science” are not such entities. Nor is humanism a total opposite as we are not anti-humanists- far from it. Nor do we want nothing to do with science or philosophy in the same way you think you want nothing to do with Father, Son, nor Holy Spirit.

            As for saying that you need to do the methodology appropriate to the discipline to debate it sensibly, that is really not controversial and to call it a “courtier argument” is absurd. If I do Maths I have to understand the right method, or I can

          • Wads42

            The Trinity is like Quantum Mechanics; no-body understands it –said Richard Feynman (about QM). Yes we know about Christian Humanism and also Christian philosophy and science,–but the trouble is it confines your thinking so you cannot think outside the box. Whatever conclusion you come to, it must necessarily include Jesus/God,–otherwise you will probably be cast out of your Church as a heathen. Suppose your Christian “science” lead you to the conclusion that there is no God, and Jesus was just a Jewish preacher with delusions of grandeur?–that would never do would it?
            Yes but doing science and maths is not the same as doing religion,–which is the whole point of the discussion. Theology is basically the study of Nothing, and anyone can have a go; it has no methodology,-unless it is just to believe what you are told without evidence as part of the “method”.
            So what kind of God did Abraham worship? Most of his environment consisted of sand and sky,-and sheep of course. That was the limit of his experience.

    • Pubcrawler

      Maybe I’ll try outside my local one tomorrow. If you don’t hear from me again, you’ll know how I got on.

      • Anna

        Please read John 3:16.

  • Anton

    Provost Holdsworth in his own words, from the link which Dr Ashenden has kindly provided above:

    I’m one of the more outspoken members of clergy who happen to be gay and I write quite a lot about that… For me, equality is indivisible – I think that people should be treated alike whether or not they happen to be gay or happen to be straight and that has led me to be one of the campaigners to Equal Marriage in Scotland. I look forward to the day when I’ll be able to marry such couples in church.

    • IrishNeanderthal

      It should be a matter for serious scrutiny how come “homophobia” and “Islamophobia” have come to be the two most prominent political “phobias”.

      • David

        ’tis all part of the false “equality” agenda.

      • Wads42

        How about Arachnophobia?

        • Anton

          Isn’t that something to do with the World Wide Web?

          • Wads42

            I suppose they both have webs.

  • PessimisticPurple

    This would be the same Kirk that that used to freak out because there were too many Tims in Scotland. I think I prefered them before they got in touch with their feminine side.

  • 1642again

    Do you think Jesus would have over-turned the tables and used his horsewhip on the clergy in the Cathedral?

    • David

      He’d probably have given them a tongue lashing !

      • 1642again

        Oh, I believe he’d have gone a fair bit further than that.

      • orthodoxgirl

        Undoubtedly whilst fixing them with His intent gaze (which I am sure looks right into the recipient’s soul). He shows us in the Gospels how he responded strongly to some of His opponents.

        • David

          Yes, the gospels speak to us across 2000 years, revealing not only His incredible wisdom and street wise prescience, but also an ability to peer right into human motives.

          • Wads42

            Which are?

          • David

            Would you like us to organise a collection for you, so that you can then buy a New Testament ?

          • Wads42

            Actually I have several (and the OT as well.) I am quite proud of the fact that when I was a teenager I sat down and read the entire Bible from cover to cover. More recently I tried it on the Ouran but only lasted 3 pages; it was so tedious.

          • David

            I forced myself to read the Koran twice now, and some of the supporting works. As you say, tedious, not a great read.

          • David

            You’ve read the Bible twice, hmm, very good. Parts of the OT can be tedious, especially all the purity laws that are now redundant under the New Covenant. Other parts are beautiful and packed with deep wisdom. The Psalms are always a fruitful read, whatever your mood. The NT is distinctly different from the OT, although full of references back to it, and almost always a good read.
            The Koran. Hhmm. Tedious ? Yes, very. I have forced myself to read it all, twice, plus some of the supporting documents. It’s not a good read, and as you go through, anyone well versed in the Bible will spot the suaras that echo it, but the echo makes a different noise – very different !

          • Wads42

            Rather more than twice I think; I have been acquainted with it all my life, also other works pertaining to it like The Epic of Gilgamesh, the Enuma Elish, the Ugaritic aexts (in which it is revealed that Yahweh was the brother of Baal, and had a girlfriend,-a sort of consort, an “Asherah

          • David

            You clearly have an interest in such matters. It is obviously possible to study religion purely as an intellectual concern. I did that myself many years ago, before I became a Christian, as a sort of interest. But faith is a different creature. With faith, it essentially boils down to who or what you decide to trust, or not. Christians of all stripes put their trust in Jesus, as the door to God.

          • Wads42

            Yes I agree, but I take the more sceptical view that nothing and nobody should be taken on trust, and that religious faith is a blind alley. All claims must be checked and checked again, whether they are scientific or religious; (religion is “just” a form of early primitive attempts at science before it became more rigorous and reliable.
            For instance, we do not have “faith” in Darwinian Evolution, or Newton or Einstein,- we keep checking their science empirically and constantly. If they survive this process we assign greater probability to their pragmatic usefulness and provisional “truth”. That is why Science works.

          • David

            Yes I am very familiar with the philosophy and methods of science. It is a very useful tool to gain understanding of our physical environment; then through the combination of technology and capitalism, which produces the goods, we can manipulate that environment for good or ill.
            Faith deals with spiritual truths, not physical reality, and because it seeks truth in a different area it uses different methods.
            There is no clash between science and faith. The boundaries of the two areas of human endeavour are well explored at the Cambridge Institution of Science and Faith, in one of that University’s colleges. All the papers are available on on-line if you are interested.

          • Anna

            This shows that deep down you do hunger and thirst for God. To those who come to Him with humility, seeking for truth, He has promised to reveal Himself. So keep seeking and you will find God.

          • Wads42

            No sorry to disappoint you; I just take an academic interest in religious polemics, mainly because I regard them as false and meaningless and a public nuisance that engages godless rationalists in hours of wasteful exchanges of views (or insults), when we could be dealing with more pressing social and political problems, like poverty, war and funding the NHS and railways,
            Hope that clarifies the atheist position.

          • Anna

            At the root of these pressing social and political problems, lies the selfishness of man, not a lack of resources. If the atheists could find a solution to man’s selfishness and sin, then you might be able to solve those other problems as well. I understand that you are still trying, and will be for a long time!

          • Wads42

            Yes we are trying, but it is part of Man’s Nature, because we are a risen ape, not a fallen angel, and we still have the cunning and “malice of the ape”, as someone else put it.
            This of course is the Darwinian explanation, for which there is good scientific support. You would no doubt say Man is Fallen because of Original Sin. These two different ontologies are irreconcilable, despite what the “accommodationists” say,
            People have tried to alter Man’s nature by social and biological engineering, beginning with you Christians. Also the Soviets and the Nazis tried it,-but our genes are to resilient for us all to be turned into sweet doves and puppies..

          • Anna

            We are not fallen angels, thank God, or we would be irredeemable. About being ‘risen apes’, on the whole apes are less capable of evil than human beings, so if anything we must be fallen apes, if the Darwinian theory were true.

            However, there are huge gaps in the Darwin’s theory of evolution. I do not have much time for a discussion on this topic, but there was an interesting debate on this topic on another thread. Here is an excerpt –

            “In Darwin’s time, modern genetics and the structure of the DNA were little understood, and if he had knowledge of it, it is unlikely that he could logically speaking, have come up with conclusions he did.

            For example, beneficial mutations are extremely rare and most mutations tend to be harmful. For one mammalian species to change to another, thousands of identical beneficial mutations – which confer survival advantage – had to occur simultaneously in several of the offspring born to mothers within a single generation of the parent species, to facilitate breeding within the new species. If you calculate the probability of that happening – and it is doubtful anyone has – it might be easier to win several lotteries in a single day.

            Those who support evolution cannot explain (and have never calculated) how many times these nearly impossible transformations from one species to another had to occur from the common ancestor that we supposedly shared with the apes till we arrived at the Home sapiens stage. Nor can they give reasons why all these intermediate forms vanished from the earth.

            School biology textbooks – showing drawings of evolution from monkey to man – make it all look very simple. In medicine, however, you learn only of mutations that cause disease and not one instance of a mutation that produces unequivocal advantage for the individual.

            To believe evolution you do need to have huge amounts of faith.”

          • Wads42

            As always, you Christians have been fed with straw man versions of Evolution designed to ridicule it and turn you away from it because it may damage your faith.
            Tell me, were you “taught” about it in a Faith school, or a Church perhaps? What you need to do is go straight to an unbiased scientific teacher’s book and start from there without any of the perverted religious overlay. Start with Prof Richard Dawkins himself. “The Selfish gene”, or “The Blind Watchmaker” would be suitable”;–but you have to do some work,
            All your objections can be answered; evolution is a fact,-but even if it wasn’t, divine creation is an absurd claim without a shred of evidence.
            It is true, most mutations are harmful, but some are positively adaptive, and it is them that count. Evo is not teleological (looking for a goal or purpose),–therefore it can go anywhere. If “you” had ended up as a thinking octopus, you would no doubt claim that octopuses were God’s Ultimate Plan and Final Perfect fulfilment. The approximate number of mutations and speciations involved have been calculated through DNA studies. Have you heard of “Mitochondrial Eve”,.or “Y-chromosome Adam”?
            Try also Dawkin’s books “River out of Eden”, and “The Ancestors’ Tale” on the same topic. (And just in case you think Dawkins is the only Evolutionary Biologist in existence,–there are many more. Try also Prof. Jerry Coyne;–get to it!
            Darwin did not know about genes and DNA,-he had contributed quite enough already; but he new some kind of heritable factor must exist,–and so it has proved to be. Things have moved on since Darwin’s day. Evolution evolves,–it is not static Holy Writ.
            Beware of Creationism,–it can damage your Education.

          • Anna

            Sorry, if I have ridiculed your deeply held beliefs. But please calm down a bit – you are jumping to too many conclusions. First, I was never ‘taught’ arguments for or against evolution in any church I attended. In school like many others I ‘believed’ in Darwin’s theory. It was while studying medicine that I began to understand how little evidence there really was.

            You confidently assert that “the approximate number of mutations and speciations involved have been calculated through DNA studies.” Please give me a specific reference for these calculations, if you can.

            Coming to some of the points you raised, here is another excerpt from the earlier thread I mentioned – and please note that Darwin himself had his doubts –

            “Here is a short list of the types of evidence that evolutionary biologists have failed to produce – examples from history of animals having undergone speciation, presence of transitional (intermediate) forms, unequivocally beneficial mutations in humans and evidence of human improvement through genetic mutations. They also tend to be very vague about the mathematical probability for the occurrence of these events.

            Some difficulties that I have with their approach:

            Why is speciation not observable even in organisms that multiply at an extremely rapid rate? It is not enough to show that Streptococcus pneumoniae developed resistance to penicillin– you need to demonstrate that it evolved into a new type of bacterium.

            If you can find only a handful of related species to prove your point that we all evolved from a common ancestor, which has now become extinct – that is weak evidence. Darwin thought the same: “Firstly, why, if species have descended from other species by insensibly fine gradations, do we not everywhere see innumerable transitional forms? Why is not all nature in confusion instead of the species being, as we see them, well defined? Why do we not find them embedded in countless numbers in the crust of the earth.”

            To these questions, the Bible has the answer: “God created the creatures according to their kind …”

            Evolutionary biologists rarely give an estimation of the approximate number of mutations required for humans (or any other creature) to evolve from their most recent ancestor. ‘Several’ is too vague. Does the figure run into hundreds (too low), thousands or millions?

            If they say, for example, that approximately 1000 mutations are required for a single transition, they need to provide an estimate of the the probability for this number of the identical mutations to have occurred simultaneously in several members of the same species – to facilitate interbreeding within the new species.

            Next, how many intermediate forms are required for humans to evolve from the ancestor they shared with the monkeys? What is the probability that all these transitional forms will become extinct despite being some of the ‘most evolved’ of species? Conveniently saying that they all died somehow – is to suggest that evolution is highly inefficient and therefore improbable.”

            You may mock anyone questioning evolution, but even Darwin did not possess your unshakeable confidence in his own theory. Yes, I have heard of the ‘Mitochondrial Eve’ or the ‘Y-chromosome’, and find nothing there to contradict Christian beliefs.

            Coming to Dawkins, I have read his “The God Delusion”, and found no strong arguments there. I recommend that you read some of the arguments on the other side – perhaps you will see why there are too many scientists who do not ‘believe’ in this theory.

            Now, I will agree with you that arguments against evolution are not necessarily proofs for creationism. Here I tend to agree with Gould’s view that ‘science and religion each represent different areas of inquiry… and the two domains do not overlap’ (NOMA).

            I am a little surprised at your line of argument which is essentially that “the great ones – Darwin or Dawkins or Coyne – have spoken and it is heretical to think differently.” Surely you could mention your own reasons for being convinced instead of throwing names around.

          • Wads42

            In case you missed it first time (above). here it is again:
            In case you missed it above,-here it is again,–an extract from Prof Jerry Coyne’s site. I am not going to do your work for you,–just try reading the books yourself instead of expecting me to find references for you. For your info “The God Delusion” is about
            “Every time a female gives birth to offspring a new species is created. Whilst this isn’t new species in the sense you are meaning it is, nonetheless, a reality. Only in cases of cloning would this principle not operate. Species take countless generations to noticeably change to something discernibly observable as different. The time periods involved, and numbers of generations, means that observation is very difficult, though it has been noted in several species of rapidly reproducing insects, bacteria in the Lenski experiments, and of course Darwin’s finches are famous.
            As for the effect of mutation, these can be beneficial, harmful, or neutral. Generally mutations happen independently of the environment in which they occur; for example, bacteria do not develop resistance to antibiotics because of the existence of antibiotics, rather the random mutation of bacteria that gives rise to resistance allows that bacteria to thrive, whilst others perish. Of course, whether you regard this as harmful or not depends on your point of view. To humans, it’s harmful that bacteria become resistant to antibiotics, to the bacteria, however, it is of benefit. Evolution simply does its own thing.
            I do hope this helps as regards your confusion.

          • Wads42

            “”Conveniently saying that they all died somehow – is to suggest that evolution is highly inefficient and therefore improbable.””

            Answer: They did not all die,–that is how you come to be here as a living descendent. In other lineages, they actually did all die,-and left no descendants.
            Have you not noticed that some ancient families have gone extinct? How about “Last of the Mohicans”? Where are the Neanderthals now?-(-apart from some half Homo sapiens interbred descendants).

            –and yes, Evolution is highly inefficient,-that is why it takes so long in nature,- because it is random and unguided; (“Natural selection of random mutations)
            if you want to see rapid guided evolution, Google the Lenski program (see article),–this is fast human-guided Evolution. See also breeding pedigree dogs, cats, horses etc.

          • Anna

            Thank you, but you have further convinced me that people who profess faith in the theory of evolution really know little about it. What you have provided is essentially weak evidence (things most people learn in school biology textbooks) and a convenient redefining of ‘species’.



            For example – “They did not all die,–that is how you come to be here as a living descendent.” This is no evidence at all. What about the intermediate species? Please give examples – this should be easy enough if they exist. Even Darwin was puzzled by the absence of transitional forms in nature, but you seem to have such faith.

            It might be more helpful if you could provide answers to the questions I asked. You needn’t do my homework for me; but please do it for yourself. It appears that you do not have the answers, and you have never asked yourself these questions.

          • Wads42

            So unless I am wrong, you yourself are not a Professor of Evolutionary Biology, but you know much more about it than all of the world’s scientists who are?- How amazingly arrogant! Unless I missed it in your posts, you do not actually say what you are,– what are your qualifications?
            You say I should supply references for your convenience? Just read the books, then you won’t need references,–unless you want me to reference every sentence of every chapter of every book I have ever read.
            Visit Prof Jerry Coyne’s web-site WEIT (Why Evolution is True),-or read his book with the same title. Read Sean Carroll’s book “The Big Picture”, for an overall view of real science.
            Try googling the “Dunning-Kruger” effect. I will spare you an explanation of what it is out of politeness.
            This is my last post on the subject; there is a limit to my time and patience.

          • Anna

            “…but you know much more about it than all of the world’s scientists who are?”

            What about scientists like Frank Hoyle who did not accept the theory of evolution? Your tirade proves my point that most people who ‘believe’ in Darwin’s theory do not subject the evidence to proper scrutiny. You are obviously afraid to question the all-knowing experts, and yet ridicule Christians for their faith.

            You imply that I have over-estimated my intelligence; I suggest that you have hugely underestimated your gullibility. I don’t think you need superior intelligence, only practical common sense in these matters. After all, these theories are by no means infallible; and few scientists would claim to have produced irrefutable proofs for them.

            About my qualifications, I am a doctor. In my teens, like most of my peers, I assumed that the Darwin’s theory was backed by solid evidence. After reading ‘God’s Truth’ by Alan Hayward (who was a physicist), I realised that there are too many gaps and unproven assumptions, and my subsequent reading around this topic has confirmed this view.

            I do not want to know about all the books you have ever read, but perhaps you could name just one book, which gives a specific calculation for the probability for any of the key events in evolution occurring. I am sure that you cannot. Actually, such calculations are often supplied by people who reject the theory of evolution, as they have nothing to lose. Here is an example:

            https://answersingenesis.org/evidence-against-evolution/probability/does-evolution-have-a-chance/

            Most evolutionary biologists choose to ignore probability because it does not support their theories. Dawkins in his “God Delusion” claims that his belief that God does not exist is based on probability. But what is the probability of a new species of humans developing today. What are the chances that several couples at any given point of time will produce babies, with chromosomes that set them apart from their parent species, but sufficiently alike for them to be able to mate with each other?

            “…there is a limit to my time and patience”.

            I understand your frustration – you do not have the answers, so you resort to insults.

          • Wads42

            A little summary for you. I hope it helps your understanding of some aspects of Evolution.
            Every time a female gives birth to offspring a new species is created. Whilst this isn’t new species in the sense you are meaning it is, nonetheless, a reality. Only in cases of cloning would this principle not operate. Species take countless generations to noticeably change to something discernibly observable as different. The time periods involved, and numbers of generations, means that observation is very difficult, though it has been noted in several species of rapidly reproducing insects, bacteria in the Lenski experiments, and of course Darwin’s finches are famous.
            As for the effect of mutation, these can be beneficial, harmful, or neutral. Generally mutations happen independently of the environment in which they occur; for example, bacteria do not develop resistance to antibiotics because of the existence of antibiotics, rather the random mutation of bacteria that gives rise to resistance allows that bacteria to thrive, whilst others perish. Of course, whether you regard this as harmful or not depends on your point of view. To humans, it’s harmful that bacteria become resistant to antibiotics, to the bacteria, however, it is of benefit. Evolution simply does its own thing.
            I do hope this helps as regards your confusion.

        • Wads42

          Being a Doctor, one of my Obstetric colleagues specialised in “giving the stare” to the prosecuting Council; worked every time.

          • It begs the question why an obstetrician would need advanced staring-down skills against prosecutors.

          • Wads42

            Well you know how it is; all Doctors are vulnerable to litigation from patients and relatives; I have been there myself. Some prosecutors are bullies and you have to stand up to them when you know you are not at fault.

          • True enough. In the US litigation is an established industry; here in Canada, it’s trying to become one, but our courts are reluctant to hand out lavish compensations, so things are not as crazy.

    • Wads42

      Why didn’t they fight back? Sounds fishy to me; after all he must have been heavily outnumbered. Perhaps it was the Power of the Lord; (which Lord? Jesus himself, Yahweh. or Allah?)–and is that an alternative Trinity?

  • len

    Chrislam seems to be the latest false religion.An unholy mess if there ever was one.

  • Maalaistollo

    I find it difficult to believe that this Provost did not know exactly what he was doing. I can only speculate as to why he did it.

    ‘But he that is an hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and’… invites it into the sheepfold?

  • carl jacobs

    We had many things in common, but most of all a deep attraction to God who made us, whose intentions towards us, we know, are love and mercy.

    Islam knows nothing of God. It offers a false vision just like all other false religions. It does not declare God in part yet unawares. It teaches the total darkness of the dead. By definition there can be no commonality – no more than could have been possible between Elijah and the priests of Baal.

    and Christianity tells us that God’s [primary defining characteristic] is love.

    The angels do not cry out “Loving, Loving, Loving is the Lord God Almighty.” Neither does God swear by His Love. Holiness is the defining attribute of God.

    • Dominic Stockford

      I was tempted myself to be a bit theologically nitpicky, you give me the courage to do so.

      Surely the defining attribute of God, Father, Son and Spirit, is the complete and perfect balance between all His attributes (of which he lacks none) – something the human mind finds difficult to conceive. I suppose that one could give that balanced attribution the name ‘Holy’.

      • chefofsinners

        “Mercy and truth are met together. Righteousness and peace have kissed each other.”
        God’s perfect holiness and His perfect love are reconciled in Christ.

  • orthodoxgirl

    The Provost’s decision to do this was naïve at best and completely foolish at worst…..and I suppose everyone was expected to sit there politely and listen to Our Beloved Lord insulted and slain again by this heresy?! Unbelievable.

    • Anton

      It was chanted in Arabic; probably they didn’t know what was being said.

      • orthodoxgirl

        Even worse that the Provost would allow this to be chanted without knowing the content of the message. Foolish, idiotic man.

        • Anton

          Please do not think I am disagreeing with you!

        • magnolia

          I wonder if it has occurred to him that those who chose the passage will not be thinking what a wonderful kind man he is but what a gullible fool with no faithfulness to his beliefs, nor ability to see what is in people’s hearts and motivations.

          That is not a good witness to Jesus who sees into people’s hearts- unerringly, and would have warned him had he been asked.

          When he meets Jesus after death I hope he will by then have done some things for Christ which mark him out as “wise as serpents and gentle as doves” to save him further embarrassment.

      • Pubcrawler

        I prefer to think of it as an incantation than a chant.

  • pawnraider

    Apparently the Provost of Glasgow Cathedral is either unaware of this one following verse or has excised it from his Bible altogether. And that verse is, “Be ye not unequally yoked together with unbelievers: for what fellowship hath righteousness with unrighteousness? and what communion hath light with darkness?” 2 Corinthians 6:14. His intention that this little stunt was intended to “help build relationships between Christians and Muslims in Glasgow” not only failed but failed miserably. The reader, and therefore we must assume that the Muslim community, has made it abundantly clear that they do not want to have any part of this relationship building. What needs to happen now is that the Provost needs to issue a robust apology and demand the same from the reader and from the Muslim community if it sponsored the reader. If an apology from the Provost is not forthcoming then he should rethink his position at the Cathedral and if he refuses to do so then someone may have to make that decision for him.

    In the future no more invitations should be extended to any Muslims and the Muslim community because
    of this insult and their apparent lack of remorse in doing so.

    Christian Churches are for Christian worship and are not intended for any bridge building.

    • 1642again

      Liberal clergy have no time for Paul as he offends their many secular sensibilities time and again. I suspect they are in for a shock.

  • bockerglory

    All Christians should be taught what his Grace has eloquently explained as the difference between Christianity & Islam.

    This is my experience too when working with devout followers of Islam.

    Our Theological training is obsessed with women, homosexual and gender equality (obsession with sex & genitalia use).

    This obsession is Satanic and deflects from Christ.

    Islam is one of the false teachers Christ warns us about.

    An Apology should be given.

    • Wads42

      Isn’t Jesus one of the false gods that the Prophet warned us about?

      • bockerglory

        Hi Wads42

        No, in the Quran Jesus is a prophet foretelling the coming of the judgement and the coming of the Counsellor (which for Islam is Mohammed). He is recognised as the messiah and is perfect but he is not divine, did not die on the cross & so was not resurrected. He is Islam’s Elijah – he just ascended to heaven.

        Islam claims that Paul and John are the false teachers who made up “grace” & resurrection & forgiveness of sins & corrupted the Gospels. Islam is a type of Judaism which recognises the existence of Jesus but cannot accept resurrection.

        Problem is that the Quran commands Moslems to read the Gospels as it sets out God’s plan. Arguably if a Moslem does not read the Gospels he is going against Allah which is a sin etc. However the Gospel (is. Matthew, Mark,Luke & John) contradicts the Quran about forgiveness & who Jesus was. The Quran is perfect tge direct word of omnipotent God/Allah – so either God has lied or the Gospel is corrupted. But why would God/Allah allow the Gospel to become corrupted when Moslems are commanded to read the Gospels? Wouldn’t God/Allah have left the Moslem people with an uncorrupted version?

        It is this conundrum & many other contradictions in the Quran that angers Islam so much that it’s followers will kill others.

        I hope this is helpful.

        Thank you

        • Wads42

          Thank you for that courteous summary.

  • CliveM

    In addition to being incredulous that the Provest allowed the reading of the Koran in Church, i was outraged that this gesture was abused in such a dishonest and deceitful way.

    Then I thought about it further and realised that the person being dishonest was the Provest; dishonest to God and deceitful to the Church, because he put his views above the revealed truth of the Biible. Whereas the student was at least being honest to her faith and was proclaiming the truth as she has been taught it.

    The problem here isn’t what she said, or that she said it, the problem here is the Provest allowed it.

  • carl jacobs

    Liberalism teaches that theology is non-essential because it begins with the presupposition that God does not actually reveal Himself to man. Rather, liberalism assumes that man grasps after God with each coming to an incomplete understanding. God is the proverbial elephant beneath the hands of the blind men – silent, passive, inert, ultimately unknowable.

    Different religions represent the different traditions of the blind. We are supposed to respect each other’s traditions because we are all supposed to realize the inherent incompleteness of our own apprehension. Each religion teaches truth yet only partially so. The quest for “understanding” is thus a quest to reveal the overlap of apprehension between mutually inadequate religions. The entire exercise is premised upon the presupposition that Truth is not knowable – that no man can ever definitively say “Thus sayeth the Lord.”

    Of course, both sides must agree to this formulation. Otherwise you get a Muslim saying these things in a church at the invitation of an Anglican priest. The Muslim at least deserves respect for refusing to acquiesce in this charade. He kept his integrity even if it is rooted in falsehood and rebellion and hatred of God.

    What was the priest thinking? That this Muslim say the world like he did. Bad assumption.

  • Dominic Stockford

    In our local hospital, and probably the same in many others across the country, people who heretically think as the Provost does, have allowed muslims to put up plaques in what used to be the chapel. Get a local expert to translate from the Arabic what is written on them to you, and I am sure you will find that Surah 19 will be on them – as it is on the one here. This is the idiotic, dangerous, and foolish position that such ecumenical groups and movements as “Churches Together” have led us on a path towards*. The end, of course, will be Islamic domination of British society, the majority of whom far from not seeing it coming, actually invited it to do so. As soon as you move away from salvation through Christ, and Him alone, this is all inevitable.

    *The folly of the basic premise of ecumenism – that ‘Christians’ are all really the same – is demonstrated more than adequately by the discussion threads on this site. It then steps onwards into interfaith (as Churches Together has done) and inaccurately and insanely claims that all religious groups ‘worship the same God’. Thus we end up with the heretical abomination (Proverbs 6:16-19) of what happened in Glasgow.

    • Pubcrawler

      I don’t know if they have a plaque, but the chapel of my local hospital is certainly used by Muslims for prayer. Its peculiar orientation permits them, when facing Mecca, to pray with their backs (and arses) towards the altar and the cross behind it.

      • Simon Platt

        They’ll like that.

        • Pubcrawler

          I’m normally one for low bows, but perhaps next time I have cause/opportunity to be in there, I might just adopt the practice to return the compliment. (Full-on prostration is not an option given my gammy knee.)

          • Simon Platt

            They’ll not like that.

    • Ah, yes, the contemporary hospital, university or airport ecumenical chapel. The modern communal doghouse for the disappearing “religious types,” those seeking “quiet meditation” …whatever that means… or for those insisting on publicly provided Muslim prayer space. Also a good place to duck into for some stealth-vaping at an airport, if you don’t want to go through security again.

  • William Lewis

    Is he hedging his bets?

  • Mrs Proudie of Barchester

    It would not happen in Barchester…I think the Provost should consider his position.

  • CliveM

    Just a clarification, Glasgow Cathedral is also known as the High Kirk and is Church of Scotland. St. Mary’s Cathedral (the Cathedral in question) is a Cathedral in Glasgow, but is not called Glasgow Cathdral.

    • Anton

      That’s St Mungo’s, isn’t it?

      • CliveM

        It’s also known as that and also St. Kentigern’s. I’ve been in it. Thought it a bit gloomy.

        Glasgow Cathedral is the most common name, although it reflects its history as previously being the RC Cathedral (pre reformation), and has no real status in the CofS. Hence being called the High Kirk of Glagow.

        If I remember rightly it was there that the post Indy reconciliation service was held, at which most of the SNP didn’t turn up.

        • dannybhoy

          “It’s also known as that and also St. Kentigern’s. I’ve been in it. Thought it a bit gloomy.”
          That’s Scotland for ye.

      • Mungo’s?

        Sing along with us
        Dee dee dee-dee dee
        Dah dah dah-dah dah
        Yeah we’re hap-happy
        Dah dah-dah
        Dee-dah-do dee-dah-do dah-do-dah
        Dah-do-dah-dah-dah
        Dah-dah-dah do-dah-dah

        • Anton

          “We love everybody but we do as we please” – liberal Christian motto.

  • Pubcrawler

    On the Feast at which we celebrate the manifestation of Christ to the gentiles, it is right and proper — nay, to be encouraged — that those of other faiths should be invited. But they should be there to listen, not to present the opposing view.

    • Anton

      You could offer to take them to the pub afterwards…

      • Pubcrawler

        Yes, the thirst after righteousness. So long as they’re paying.

      • A pint of stout and a plate of bangers and beans. What could be more ecumenical than that?

        • Pubcrawler

          Stop it, you’re making me hungry.

          • CliveM

            Being Glasgow, it’ll be a pint of Heavy and scotch pie, beans and chips.

            Bet you’re not so hungry now!

          • Pubcrawler

            On the contrary, that’ll do me nicely.

          • CliveM

            Have you ever had a scotch pie?

          • Pubcrawler

            Yes. Shop near where I used to work had them. Tasty!

          • CliveM

            They can be. They can also be greasy, cardiac inducing cack.

          • Pubcrawler

            I guess I’m just lucky like that.

          • CliveM

            I was being a bit harsh. There use to be a bakery i use to go to at 2 in the morning, straight from the oven, delicious!

          • Pubcrawler

            Post-pub snack?

          • CliveM

            Yep, you know how the munchies hit at that point!

          • Pubcrawler

            Moi? *innocent face*

          • CliveM

            You’re fooling no one.

          • carl jacobs

            A pie made out of scotch sounds terrible.

          • CliveM

            No mutton.

  • Surreal. A Muslim girl droning on endlessly from the Koran to a respectfully quiet congregation and a group of polite clerics in their Sunday best. Nice place too, with beautiful stone work; it will make a pretty mosque one day. That mural in the tympanum will have to go, of course.

    • Old Nick

      In a tongue not understanded of the people

      • Pubcrawler

        Nor, evidently, of the Provost.

      • I’m guessing the seated folks reading from sheets are going over a translation of the verses. Either that, or trying to figure out the list of who’s bringing what to the church potluck

        • You don’t know how to grab a vid off FB and put it on YouTube, do you?

          • Goodness, no, YG. I don’t do Facebook much. But I understand you need an app, such as from http://www.savefrom.net. The Facebook community “experts” seem to have a few ways: https://www.facebook.com/help/community/question/?id=324795250985478. Hope it helps.

          • PS, it may be advisable to just post the URL to the young lady’s vid embedded in her FB account, assuming it’s open. Fewer complications over copyright issue as well.

          • Anton

            The very words used in conversation between Henry VIII and Archbishop Cranmer regarding Ann Boleyn’s alleged infidelity, no doubt.

          • Bwahahahahah!

    • IanCad

      The video is no more Avi.

      • No doubt thanks to the notorious Cranmer gang of ruffians in the comments pit. We are supposed to be touched by the reaching out across the abyss of intolerance, awed by the beauty of the recitation, not to mention floored by the poignancy, or whatever. Well, it’s not like smart phones are rare, so expect someone else to put it up on YouTube.

    • Wads42

      Yes just like the Hagia Sofia;–very nice Mosque.

      • There was bonus of liberating all that gold lamination and precious stone mosaic bits.

  • Shadrach Fire

    Naïveity; What have dark and light in common.

  • A Berean

    Clergyman defends St. Mary’s Koran reading. http://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-glasgow-west-38591559

    • Martin

      “Asked if he had known what the Koran verse specifically said about Jesus, Mr Holdsworth declined to comment further.”

      Nuff said.

  • Jack would find it would be helpful to know what verses from Surah 19 were actually chanted.

  • Andrew Holt

    Thankyou Anton. After a couple of readings I take your point. However I am pretty sure I’m talking theologically and logically. The world and the church, regrettably, continue to duck this one. Which is why I think it better to answer the question, “same or different God” directly. We thus avoid any misunderstanding on the part of Muslims as to whether or not the path they follow leads to perdition or paradise. In this I only risk censure. Many of my brothers and sisters in the Ummah risk losing their lives.

    • Anton

      In discussion with Muslims rather than other Christians I’d stick to the issue of Jesus’ divinity.

  • dannybhoy

    Peter Dawson said it best: ” Where are the Yeomen, the Yeomen of England?”

    Still, as long as they get to wear their dresses..

    • IanCad

      Thanks Danny, your link led me to “Glorious Devon.” A song that I had completely forgotten.

      • dannybhoy

        Australian Peter Dawson was one of the greats. Always stirs my heart and reminds me that we once stood for something..

    • CliveM

      What do the Yeomen of England have tto do with the Scottish Episcopal Church?

      • dannybhoy

        I believe in the Union Clive, and I was thinking back to when we knew what we stood for I didn’t know what the Scottish equivalent of our Yeomen would be, but the yeomen exemplified that strong British spirit …
        This is just another load of pathetic mealy mouthed nonsense.
        “The Provost, the Very Rev’d Kelvin Holdsworth, has helpfully explained what lay behind his strategy of having the Koran read in the Cathedral. He intended that it should help build relationships between Christians and Muslims in Glasgow.”

        Look, if he wants to build relationships, go ask the Christian churches in Syria, Egypt, Sudan, Pakistan about building relationships with Muslims. Get some of their wives and daughters to share the kind of abuse they have suffered. This man is truly dim if he thinks devout Muslims in Britain have a different attitude to Christians than they do in Muslim countries. Jews and Christians are inferiors, dhimmis, and they get short shrift in Muslim countries when things go wrong..

        • CliveM

          Reivers perhaps, but not really the same.

          • dannybhoy

            Reivers were cross border raiders. One of my mother’s ancestors was hung on the border for sheep stealing..

    • Dreadnaught

      Substitute Yemen for Yeomen if you want to bring things up to date.

  • chefofsinners

    I do love Gavin’s manner. So gentlemanly and restrained, yet this smiling assassin inserts the stiletto of truth with unerring and insightful accuracy.
    Surely the Provost has committed a hate crime against Christianity, for this was no less offensive than a pork pie in a synagogue.

    Error’s greatest desire is to replace truth.
    Matthew 24:
    “When ye therefore shall see the abomination of desolation, spoken of by Daniel the prophet, stand in the holy place, (whoso readeth, let him understand:) Then let them which be in Judaea flee into the mountains.”

    So it is that gay people want to be married in church and the social harmony Tsar wants to teach secular humanism through Church schools.

    As Gavin says, it is all about power rather than love. Only Christianity truly, lovingly, vulnerably and humbly recognises an individual’s right to choose what they will believe and whom they will serve. And says “I will love and serve you regardless. God will judge.”

    • Sarky

      ‘Christianity recognises an individuals right to choose’…
      But burns them in hell for eternity if they choose the wrong answer. How loving, vulnerable and humble.

      • chefofsinners

        No, I won’t be burning you. If you believe you will burn, then you know what to do about it.

        • Sarky

          Luckily, I don’t believe any of it.

          • ChaucerChronicle

            “A man can no more diminish God’s glory by refusing to worship Him than a lunatic can put out the sun by scribbling the word ‘darkness’ on the walls of his cell.”

            C.S. Lewis, The Problem of Pain

          • Wads42

            There speaks a true lunatic.

          • magnolia

            You are a Dawkins flunky, I see. He doesn’t have the look of a man through whom love or joy flows, but at least he does some basic courtesy. You on the other hand are clearly fine to have lost any pretense at basic courtesy, clearly. Which is in a sense understandable for social Darwinism doesn’t do social politeness, so you have dispensed with the veneer of varnish which has no real basis.

            On Dawkin’s estimation social honesty is kept as only a mathematical calculation of when it might pay future dividends. You see no future dividends in basic politeness so you don’t do it.

            It surprises me that you don’t see how very much that does not commend itself, how insanely off-putting that is. But then you don’t care. Its all about sharing your misery-making acquisitive truths.

            Thing is the new new atheists tired of the sheer nastiness of the new atheists, and reverted to old live and let live atheists. You are behind the times… Doesn’t look awfully nice to come onto a Christian blog and throw curses around (“a pox on”….), and wish death and extermination, when so many Christians are being martyred worldwide, does it? Oh, and its also thoroughly weirdly illogical considering curses emanate from witchcraft and/or superstition!

          • Wads42

            Come on now, where is your sense of humour?

          • William Lewis

            “There speaks a true lunatic.”

            That was humour?

          • Sarky

            I thought so.

          • William Lewis

            Well, quite.

          • Wads42

            Well as I sy above, it was CS Lewis who started it with his “Lord. Liar or Lunatic claim”. Did not not occur to him that there was another alternative?–Jesus was a Jew and a practitioner of his faith and its dogmas, and a man of his time.

          • William Lewis

            Jesus acted as if he were God. He claimed to be able to forgive the sins of others. He claimed to have existed before Abraham. He said that those who had seen him had seen God. The Jews of the time sought to put him to death for this blasphemy. He was either a liar, a lunatic (deluded) or telling the truth. What else?

          • Wads42

            Yes well if you want to force him into the trichotomy category, I would say that he was not a liar,-he meant well. He had the deluded Jewish belief in a Messiah, an anointed King of Israel, and that he was The One. I suppose it was not completely delusional because the Jews had in the previous century got rid of the Seleucid Greeks with the Maccabean revolt,-and they thought they could therefore also get rid of the Romans; they found they had bitten off more than they could chew,-and as you know,-it ended with the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple, and the execution of Jesus (before that).
            Of course later Christians rationalized this disaster as being all part of God’s Plan.

          • Anton

            Certainly they thought it was a disaster for three days. But…

          • William Lewis

            “Yes well if you want to force him into the trichotomy category”

            I haven’t forced him into anything. I am explaining the logic of CS Lewis’ trichotomy given what Jesus said and did. You have decided that Jesus was deluded. That’s your prerogative.

          • Wads42

            I didn’t mean you, I meant C.S. Lewis and his False Trichotomy (Lord, Liar or Lunatic).

          • Sarky

            But many many men can easily diminish gods glory by refusing to worship him. Which is pretty much what is happening.

          • chefofsinners

            You believe in luck?

          • Sarky

            Luckily.

          • chefofsinners

            Good luck with that. You’ll need it.

      • ChaucerChronicle

        “There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, “Thy will be done,” and those to whom God says, in the end, “Thy will be done.” All that are in Hell, choose it. Without that self-choice there could be no Hell. No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it. Those who seek find. Those who knock it is opened.”

        C.S. Lewis, The Great Divorce

        • dannybhoy

          Well said

        • Wads42

          I thought Hell had been officially abolished by Act of Parliament back around 1952.

      • Wads42

        That’s right; “Love me, or else”.

        • chefofsinners

          “Receive my love, and let it transform you. Or allow evil to run its course.”

          • Sarky

            So 95% of the population are evil??? B####cks.

          • chefofsinners

            We are all evil. Some of us are becoming less evil by the grace of God. Others are heading for permanent separation from God.

          • Sarky

            So glad I don’t have a starting position of all people being evil.
            It kind of explains why Christians are so negative.

          • chefofsinners

            We have all sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Who can deny it?

          • Sarky

            What you call sin, I call human nature. I don’t need a god to know that how I act on that nature has consequences, good or bad.

          • chefofsinners

            Yes, human nature is sinful. And the consequences of our actions are eternal. That is why we all need God – to forgive and to impart His divine nature.

          • Sarky

            I don’t need a god or forgiveness.

          • chefofsinners

            If you have no conscience, no guilt for anything you’ve ever done, then no, you don’t need forgiveness. At least not in this world.

  • weirdvisions

    All you churches are belong to us. Unless the clergy wakes up this will become a reality.

  • Inspector General

    Greetings Ashenden! One can imagine holding a conference with three Daleks, which is the nearest one can match your {Ahem] ‘predicament’, for want of a better word. Well done you for coming home with your head still on your shoulders, so that you could relate your findings. No hope is there of reciprocal respect and understanding, even with ‘Islam lite’ if that is what Suffism comes over as. That’s what you are trying to say, are you not.

    Why the man who runs Glasgow cathedral considered it apt to smear the pulpit with the guts of Islam is quite beyond a simple Inspector. What next? Passages from George Michael’s life where he consumed 500 gay men in 7 years. Or a lecture on how to ‘shoot up’ with heroin. That would help Christianity reach out and embrace promiscuous buggery and drug abuse, surely. That’s what the politicians would like, we know.

    Now, what would be a fitting punishment for Kelvin Holdsworth. Do you think he should put himself forward to be beaten by rods? He needs to be penitent, that’s for sure. He needs to reflect and regret and indeed grieve for his foolishness, and he needs to go public about it too. But will he? To help him, the Inspector now places around him the mantle of his own penance, which is now done. For surely, Holdsworth’s need is greater than this man’s.

    Carry on that intrepid chaplain, and spread your wise counsel far!

    • chefofsinners

      I am suspending myself.

      • chefofsinners

        I have unsuspended myself.

        • chefofsinners

          I will now show how truly sorry I am by suspending myself again.

          • chefofsinners

            Until next time I want to say something.

          • chefofsinners

            Should only be a couple of times a day.

          • chefofsinners

            Me again. Just wanted to reiterate that I will not be commenting this month.

          • chefofsinners

            Except when I do.

          • chefofsinners

            Right. I am suspended. Definitely.

          • chefofsinners

            For a while.

          • bluedog

            Slow comment day, Chef?

          • chefofsinners

            Unfortunately, I am unable to comment. Did I mention that I am in self-imposed exile?

          • Inspector General

            One day Little Chef, the Inspector will relate to you how he came to find Cranmer. And he didn’t even have a PC at the time…

            He was guided by an angel (probably) and was sent here on a mission (probably)…

          • chefofsinners

            Tell me all about it in February. I can hardly wait.

          • William Lewis

            You probably won’t have to.

          • Wads42

            Come unto me all ye who are suspended.

          • Inspector General

            Enough, sir. You have humiliated him splendidly…

          • chefofsinners

            If only I could comment. But I drank a gallon of Scotch on New Year’s Eve and embarrassed myself. So sad!

      • Wads42

        I know it is often an erotic experience but you could well do yourself a permanent injury.

        • Inspector General

          You gay blade, you…

    • Wads42

      Next thing is that they will be admitting atheists,-and then where will they be?

    • Your generosity is truly touching, Inspector. It takes a special man to surrender his own penance after barely twelve days or so for the benefit of another soul. Someone pass me a tissue, please?

  • IrishNeanderthal

    This is why I am so concerned about Dame Louise Casey. If what Bolivar (I think) says on the previous article, she seems quite a nice lady. But whether it is gayfolks or Moslems, she probably is unable to critically examine the representations of serial complainers. In regard to the matter of the Crusades, it’s like in a poem by Colin McMaughton (from the book Who’s been sleeping in my porridge?):

    But Sir, you see it all began
    When Johnny hit me back!

  • IanCad

    Why has the video been taken down?

    • The Cathedral appears to have deleted it from YouTube (which is interesting), so now the only public availability is via Madinah Javed’s Facebook page (though it is locked and can’t be embedded): https://www.facebook.com/madinah.javed/videos/vb.1405125383/10211919324364223/?type=2&theater (It may, of course, shortly disappear).

      • Inspector General

        No doubt lots of finger pointing going on in Glasgow cathedral tonight, and clerics being referred to as “Jimmy” in anger…

      • Dominic Stockford

        I have downloaded it from the facebook site, though I don’t have a site I can put it up on – if anyone wants a copy do let me know.

  • len

    I wonder how the Church (or even the rest of the world) will be affected by the events on Jan 15th?.Obama is hoping to make a decision on Israel before he leaves office.
    If anyone had any doubt we are in ‘the end of days’ the next few years should clear up any doubt .Will Israel accept division of Jerusalem on 15th January 2017 or will it choose war instead? Obama will push for division of Jerusalem through France at UN.

    • Dominic Stockford

      Why would the Jews accept the division of the city they built thousands of years ago, with a large part given over the people who desire their deaths? (Jerusalem)
      Would the English accept the division of the city they built thousands of years ago, with a large part give over the people who desire their deaths? (London)

      Obama is a very dangerous man.

      • Wads42

        Don’t Christians believe in sharing and turning the other cheek?

      • Merchantman

        I’m hoping against hope May stands in the breech and vetoes the more significant proposed UN 17/1 event, if B.H.O lets it go through.

  • jsampson45

    I don’t know what was said (the video has been taken down for some reason) but I think “refutation” should read “rejection”. A refutation is a proof that the thing refuted is wrong, according to online dictionaries.

  • bluedog

    Another superb cyber-sermon from Rev’d Dr Gavin Ashenden. Thank you, Your Grace.

  • David

    From what His Grace says below, all recordings of this shameful service seem to have been “disappeared” – Hmm, interesting !
    My money is on incompetence rather than heresy. That’s more a feeling than a rational deduction I’ll admit.

  • Andrew Holt

    Maybe, like me, the liberals are hoping, against the overwhelming evidence, that Allah and Yahweh are one and the same. The problem is, the further you go down that road, the more you have to contort your Christian beliefs until they become subsumed in the mess and miasma of complete cultural relevance and no gospel.

    • David

      Yes indeed, for down that path lies a meaningless syncretism.

  • Politically__Incorrect

    I am frankly rather tired of these pretentious and pointless attempts at “integration” through multi-faith activities by the church. They seem to have mistaken integration for capitulation. I am not aware of any passage in the Bible that requires us to be doormats. What is the point in having love if you let others trample it into the ground (Matthew 7:6-8)? Love does not mean being spineless and culturally-suicidal. Love requires strength and resilience otherwise it will get crushed. I would go further and say the established church’s attitude to Islam and liberalism is idolatry. I can forge good relationships with my neighbours without letting them trash my home and undermine everything I believe in. Sadly, that is what many churches are doing.

    • Wads42

      Tut!–turn the other cheek!

      • Politically__Incorrect

        That’s not what Jesus did when he cleared the market sellers from temple. Love doesn’t just mean being passive all the time, and letting others destroy all that you value.

  • Inspector General

    Just a thought, but if Glasgow Cathedral decides it needs a service of re dedication following the outrage, what say we Cranmer types attend and all meet up?

    • Politically__Incorrect

      How would we recognise each Inspector? Unfortunately, this is not my real name. Moreover, if we reveal our identities who knows what scoundrels would hunt us down for our liberal heresies.

      • Everyone wears Guy Fawkes masks? Easy to spot the stupid grin and anonymity secured.

        • chefofsinners

          I am a Buddhist. I will wear a reincarnation.

      • Inspector General

        Thinking about it PI, we’d all be assassinated unless the place is packed with armed police…

        On a brighter note, it would give Madinah Javed an opportunity to atone for insulting Scotland’s Christians. Perhaps she would agree to attend, and be hog tied and gagged and left near the altar, purely symbolically, you understand. Being a muslim woman without her own mind, we would of course have to ask her husband or father for that…

      • Happy Jack would be easily recognisable.

        • Pubcrawler

          It’s the halo, isn’t it?

        • dannybhoy

          A smiley orange wearing a quaker hat?

          • Anton

            Green for Jack, not orange…

          • Jack will be busking on the steps.

            “And when I think of God,
            His son not sparing,
            Sent Him to die,
            I scarce can take it in;
            That on the cross, my burden
            gladly bearing He bled and died
            to take away my sin.”

          • dannybhoy

            Then sings my soul, my Saviour God to thee,
            How great Thou art, how great Thou art!
            One of my favourite hymns..
            That wouldn’t be busking Jack, that’s witnessing.

          • Has Jack switched hats on us? He told me it’s a Hasidic hat.

          • dannybhoy

            Strictly speaking Avi, I don’t think it’s either, but then would we really expect a smiley talking orange to know the differences?
            http://www.orthodox-jews.com/orthodox-jewish-clothing.html#axzz4Vvfcb8HW

            http://hatguide.co.uk/wideawake-hat/

            This is a lovely site..
            http://www.historyinthemaking.org/catalogue/menhat.html

            Btw ‘mon brave’, did I say I would send you some more photos? I recently had some old slides and negatives processed to a memory stick. Mostly of my time in Israel. But I think you expressed a great sadness that you weren’t born an Englishman,

            so if you prefer some pictures showing you what you have missed out on, I shall oblige…

          • Hi Danny, yes you did mention pics and then holy days came in for both of us, with the predictable havoc. Don’t worry…I still want to know why Google lets you mail all those MB in one email.

            Yes, as boy in Prague I fantasized about being an English fop. As a precocious twit, I read Dad’s translated works; Conan Doyle, Wodehouse, J.K. Jerome, etc. ,and I still want town house in London (preferably near a kosher market), and little summer castle in Scotland near a trout brook and a butler. That and to be a cowboy at a ranch on the Golan, with a good horse and a Winchester Repeater!

          • dannybhoy

            Your father was obviously a man of taste..
            Did you ever read any of HE Bates ‘The Darling Buds of May’?
            https://www.google.co.uk/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&ion=1&espv=2&ie=UTF-8#q=H+E+Bates+most+popular+books
            Gives a flavour of another England..
            Golders Green is -or was- a very Jewish area, but I don’t remember any kosher markets.. (I used to live and work nearby).
            The castle in Scotland you are welcome to, plus the midges.
            The Golan is a strange kind of place. I remember visiting Nimrod’s castle whilst mitnadeving on Dafna. Can be very gloomy..
            I’d like the rifle though.

    • dannybhoy

      Will you be in disguise like sackcloth and ashes?
      I have to ask as I am asthmatic and would need to keep my distance. I hope you understand. Plus of course there’s always the risk of thunderbolts…

  • I don’t know who to pray for more – Kelvin or Surah…probably Kelvin because, presumably, he should have known much better…this beggars belief.

    Jesus Come

  • From Kelvin Holdsworth’s FB page:

    “St Mary’s has received a number of offensive messages on facebook and other platforms. These have been reported to Police Scotland. We are grateful to the police for their support at this time.”

    • Anton

      “Our moneychangers have reported a number of offensive words and violent actions committed in the sacred precincts of the Temple by one Jesus of Nazareth. These have been reported to the Roman garrison. We are grateful to the Romans for their support at this time.”

    • Your cops deal with offensive messages?

      • Pubcrawler
      • Sarky

        And don’t get me started on ‘harsh words’.

        • Preposterous. And that’s a harsh word too under my definition, as I always had trouble pronouncing it.

          • dannybhoy

            That’s the Czech in you…

          • And yet I have no trouble saying, Tři stribrni řeky (pron. “trzhi strzheebrny rzheky, i.e., “three silver rivers”)! Czech is very comfy with three consonants in a row, and the unique ř is a single sound, poorly transliterated as a “rzh” …would like to see a Korean speaker try, as they need to buttress every consonant with a vowel on each side!

          • dannybhoy

            You are a man of many parts and talents Avi..Came out of one country into another..
            Reminds me of this verse from Genesis…
            “20 But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.”

            You just gotta find the people..

      • Maalaistollo

        ‘PC’ used to refer to a Police Constable. No any more.

        • Yes, and it gets interesting. In this age of hyper-PC, our local PCs must avoid downloading non-PC stuff even on their own PCs!

      • Anton

        So do yours, unhappily. Ezra Levant and all that.

        • Not saying we’re far behind your mess, but it was an administrative act by a newfangled government agency, the Human Rights Commission, that went after Ezra.

  • Interesting comment by Madinah Javed Lynda Wade on her Face Book page:

    “My mosque would be delighted to welcome a Christian woman to sing Mary’s song.”

    How about a Christian woman singing the Magnificat in your mosque?

  • Inspector General

    Fellows. The Christian clergy in today’s picture reminds an Inspector of when British sailing ships of exploration discovered tropical islands and claimed them for the crown. Most were not permanently inhabited by man. Seabirds, certainly. Imagine the ships coming close to shore, and jack tars entering long boats to row the final few yards. But what’s this! Look there, the entire population of ships rat are running down the ropes and swimming in first! The rats charge up the beach and in doing so, pass the larger bird population who view them with interest. Well, not with fear, as they’ve never seen ships rats before.

    Anyway, an hour or two later and it’s time to get back to the nest for the birds and they too head inland. But when they get to the nests, absolute carnage – the starving rats have eaten the eggs. Now, the thing is, it’s never happened to the birds before, so how can they be angry with the rats or even fearful. The birds will replace the eggs in time, but they too will be eaten. Do the birds eventually peck at the rats and drive them off, or do they stand around in a pedestrian manner as they’ve always done and watch the rats go about their business, perhaps unconsciously hoping for greater seabird / rat understanding in the future with associated mutual love and deep affection plus chicks as well. What do you think?

  • Alicia Sinclair

    My God, we`re in trouble.
    This Dhimmi-wit of a prelate would be sacked in an earlier age, where a congregation would have known what he was doing and allowing.
    But who among his congregation would have known, let alone CARED what was being said at the front. Yes, she sings it-no, we`re not expecting Arabic translations. But it was the Provosts job to CHECK what(on this Holy Day of Epiphany) was being read out from his pulpit.
    That he didn`t bother his arse to do it means he needs to go.
    Maybe he could hold hands with those Theology students in the city who might find a Dali or a a Rembrandt depiction of the Crucifixion to be ” triggering sadness and upset”.
    THAT is what the Church in 2017 has become north of the border.
    Let Sturgeon fill its empty stomach with tofu, shrink wrap the corpse and give it to the Muslims. Who-to be fair-DO know what they`re saying, how they`re achieving such reach and why it`s only good to leave the Church and the BBC alone. THEY make Islam all the easier to dominate the rest of us.

    • dannybhoy

      The desire to be well meaning and trendy knows no bounds -of commonsense.

  • Thank you inspector. I can only see Romans 1:16 as the way to open eyes and minds to the ever present danger. Lee Rigby et al certainly hasn’t.

  • Video now restored (not by the Cathedral). Bless your for your fiddly IT support.

    • From Madinah Javed’s Facebook page:

      FAO: To Whom It May Concern
      RE: Qur’an recitation in St Mary’s Cathedral (the Work) by Madinah Javed (the Author)

      We are the owners of all copyright subsisting in the Work, which is original work created on 06 January 2017 by the Author and which has been protected as a copyright work under the provisions of the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988 since that date. …

      We now understand that you are distributing or reproducing the Work (which substantially similar or identical distributed/ reproduced work shall be referred to as the Infringing Work).

      As our consent to use the Work in this manner was neither sought nor granted we must inform you that you are in breach of copyright and we hereby request that you immediately cease all infringing conduct and cease publishing and /or distributing the Infringing Work.

      Failure to do so will result in us seeking further legal remedies.

      Madinah Javed

      • carl jacobs

        Doesn’t Britain have a “Fair use” law?

        • William Lewis

          No, we are still a bit backward on that front. There are, I think, certain allowances about using stuff for educational purposes.

          Perhaps Cranmer could be reclassified as an educational site? He could award virtual diploma’s at the end of each year for those who have been paying attention.

          • William, William! I’m shocked: plural for diplomas, not a possessive with an apostrophe! I’ll assume you were posting from the Mouse and Wheel after running into the Inspector and losing count of the pints. But only this time.

          • William Lewis

            But, but, but …. It was my phone …. It made do it!

            >realises that won’t wash<

            Yes. It was the Inspector's fault.

        • JayelSmithers
          • William Lewis

            I stand corrected. I wonder if a video counts as a photograph? Perhaps not.

          • Pubcrawler

            The video was made on private property. Did she have permission from the cathedral authorities to make and distribute it? Does she have signed model release forms from all those others who appear in the video?

          • True, all of this would be considered in an actual case, which in all likelihood would never make it past a few barking phone calls between the lawyers to the mediation stage, never mind court. This lack of clarity in copyright law was supposed to be a boon to the legal profession, but only few cases between monied parties do the full nine yards…pardon the Americanism.

        • Anton

          Were someone from another jurisdiction to repost it then British laws would not be applicable.

          • IanCad

            I sometimes get the feeling that UK laws are not currently fully onboard with free speech; perhaps leading even, to a threat to shutdown blogs such as this robust bastion of liberty.
            If a website were hosted overseas would that clip the censors’ wings?

          • Pubcrawler

            Overseas hosting is how Guido gets to publish some of the things he does, such as those that are subject to local injunctions.

          • CliveM

            How else do we get to find out what all the Celebs have been up to!

        • Yes it does. This case probably falls under “reporting of current news events.” If you’re so inclined, have fun with it: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1988/48/section/30

          Of course, Miss Javed overstated her claim in taking a strict approach, but that’s her prerogative; there is no statutory definition, for what “fair” is, facts have to be established in each individual case, as what is reasonable and when. In other words, the party with most tenacity, time, money and luck wins.

      • The Explorer

        Not to be ignored, given that she’s a law student. Mark Steyn had no end of trouble from Muslim law students.

      • CliveM

        HG could try obtaining permission as “you grant Facebook “a non-exclusive, transferable, sub-licensable, royalty-free, worldwide license to use any [IP] content that you post on or in connection with Facebook (“IP License”).

  • len

    Lets assume for a moment that the Provost of Glasgow Cathedral thought he was ‘doing a good thing’ by inviting a Muslim into the Cathedral to worship her god?.

    Many secular people and some Christians assume that ‘Allah’ of the Muslims and the God of Abraham Isaac and Jacob are the same being. ‘Allah’ apparently means ‘God in Arabic.

    When we look at the founders of Christianity and Islam we find that they were very different people.Mohammed is the very antithesis of Jesus Christ.

    Also which it true Bible or Koran?.The evidence speaks for itself.

    http://www.lightforthelastdays.co.uk/articles/islam-issues/bible-or-koran.html

  • Anna

    Clothed in the garments of Islam – so similar in colour and style to the uniform of the ISIS death squads that executed Christians – this ambassador of Islam chose to amply repay the hospitality of this Provost of the Glasgow Cathedral in typical Islamic fashion. I had a similar experience years ago when a Muslim woman student was asked, as part of an inter-faith initiative, to read a portion from the Quran at a Christian institution. She chose to recite this same surah. What does this say about followers of Islam? That they value tolerance and diversity? Or that they believe in respecting the deeply held beliefs of others?

    Yet, Muslims endlessly claim victimhood – as poor, persecuted minorities. It seems to me that Muslims will always suffer from a persecution complex unless they have the upper hand, and an absolute right to dictate the agenda.

    • dannybhoy

      Some use Christian tolerance to promote Islamic intolerance,
      but then if Christian leaders are so dumb that they ignore the evidence of the persecuted Church, they can hardly complain when they find themselves having to choose between the sword and the Shahadah..

      • David

        Exactly ! Many liberals, whether Christian or not, are a danger to us all because of their naiveté and their wilful ignoring of the history of the contact between Islam and all other cultures.

        • dannybhoy

          Forgive me David. I know you are a true Anglican Christian, and the wife and I only attend and are involved in an Anglican parish church. I am sometimes disrespectful of Anglicanism. It’s a combination of deep scepticism of ecclesial hierarchies and frustration that the CofE which should be the bulwark defending and promulgating our faith has become so incredibly craven..
          They are preparing themselves for Dhimmism and death, when they should be standing four square with our Lord’s Gospel.
          I have asked some of these ‘bishops’ “if you don’t accept the authority of the Scriptures, you don’t believe in the virgin birth or our risen Saviour, why haven’t you resigned?”
          The only answer can be that as intellectuals ‘what is Truth?’ and b) ‘I like ceremonies, dressing up and being deferred to.’

          • David

            Oh that’s all right, apologies accepted. I share all your frustrations with the C of E hierarchy. Yes they are, with a few notable exemptions, failing God and all of us, as well as ultimately themselves. But other denominations are not immune from the death march of liberalism, not that, that excuses the Anglican failure.

            The C of E is not really a “Church” as more of a broad historic coalition, comprising many different strands, a flotilla of many different sorts of vessels. Amongst these I now “work” and identify with the significant and growing, genuinely Biblical faithful Anglican Christians of Reform, the Anglican Mission to England (AMiE), and the handful of genuinely Biblical local churches to be found in each diocese, plus the overseas Anglicans of the same type in the US, who parachuted out of the failing uber liberal Episcopalians; then there’s the burgeoning Global South, now led by GAFCON, of which I am a member. Looking at it globally, as I do, the dying liberal component of the C of E is, statistically insignificant, and increasingly so. But because of where we live, our perspective leads us to look down the telescope from the wrong end, as ever.

            Yes I agree with your analysis. When “faith” is understood as an intellectual exercise, or a social mission, and not about Truth, the soul and our deeper commitment, these heterodox clergy justify themselves to their own consciences, what I consider to be dishonesty, by pretending that the words of say, the liturgy, can mean very different things according to ones “interpretation”. That is bunkum is of course, and dishonest to boot. But so immersed are they, in post-modern relativism, that they are blind to their own lack of integrity.

            And yes some of them attribute far more significance to “robes” than appropriate. The ceremony is not wrong, if people find that it creates an atmosphere that puts them in the frame of mind to listen to the Word. But it is the Gospel, whether preached on a hillside or a lofty, adorned Cathedral, that counts. For without it, yes they are just dressing up !

            But the figures, and their forward projections, leads me to believe that the future C of E will be smaller, but more committed, more active and far more Biblical, as the liberals will have literally died away.

      • Anna

        I suspect that many of them will happily choose the latter.

  • Mark

    Inter faith meetings between Christians and Muslims reminds me of scenes in The Godfather. Congenial nods about this and that, with the whole problem just one point away. Everyone gently smiles and looks lovely. And then a slight move by someone towards the “problem”, and smiles still occur, yet everyone feels the tension and understands what is behind it. It’s been ridiculous for centuries and is now on our shores.

  • Anna

    An excellent post by Dr Gavin Ashenden.

    • Mike Stallard

      I want to agree wholeheartedly with this.

  • Malcolm Smith

    Perhaps someone should read to them the 8th chapter of Ezekiel.

  • The text in the service sheet stops at Ayah 33 (the equivalent of a Bible verse) but this is not where Miss Javed stops. She continues to recite from the Qu’ran and includes the following verses that follow straight after the text above.

    34 That is Jesus, the son of Mary – the word of truth about which they are in dispute.
    35 It is not [befitting] for Allah to take a son; exalted is He! When He decrees an affair, He only says to it, “Be,” and it is.
    36 [Jesus said], “And indeed, Allah is my Lord and your Lord, so worship Him. That is a straight path.”

    The recitation finishes with the words, ‘Allah, the Almighty, has spoken the truth’. This a standard liturgical suffix to a reading, the equivalent of saying, ‘This is the Word of the Lord’. The reading is being offered as a proclamation of God’s word, his truth.

    These extra Ayah teach two clear things. First, Jesus is not the son of God and is not divine. Second, Jesus should not be worshipped. These are the two doctrines that were proclaimed from the pulpit in Glasgow Cathedral on the Feast of the Epiphany, the celebration of Jesus being revealed to the nations. What kind of revelation is that?

    http://www.psephizo.com/life-ministry/is-jesus-begotten-of-the-father/

    Interestingly it seems the Bishop of Glasgow, the Rt. Rev. Gregor Duncan, was unavailable for comment and was not present at the ceremony, as he was hospitalised the day before the service after having suffered a stroke.

    • Eeyore C

      Isnt that the same verse inscribed around the inside of the Dome of the Rock over the place where Abraham nearly sacrificed Isaac? Oh yes and the one that is emblazoned on a banner on a traffic Island that greets pilgrims walking up to the church of the Nativity in Nazareth. The good Moslem lady is entirely consistent with a religion that has said in stone since its inception ” Stuff you. We are in control of this place now. And we wont give an inch. “

  • carl jacobs

    Well, will wonders never cease? Linus is posting at Psephizo. Perhaps he has gotten tired of being ignored here and is looking for a new host to infect?

    • Holger

      What an excellent post you linked to. So Christians are basically just God junkies, eh? I’m not surprised.

      Oh well, whatever crutch they need to limp through life is fine by me. Where I start to object is when they beat other people over the head with it.

      Like all addicts, they have to be told in no uncertain terms that their abusive behaviours will not be tolerated.

      • The Explorer

        Excellent post. Well, you should know. You wrote it.

      • William Lewis

        “Where I start to object is when they beat other people over the head with it.”

        Says the man who comes to Christian blogs to beat people over the head with false accusations and deceits. Does it not speak volumes that you cannot present your world view without these repeated lies and deceptions, Linus?

        • Holger

          As I recently underlined to another poster of more-than-commonly reactionary tendencies, my name is not Linus.

          But no matter. Call me what you like. It makes no difference to what I say.

          I’m here to present you with the truth and invite you to face up to the consequences of the hatred you preach. Dismiss what I say as lies and deceits if you like. The religious delusion that occupies the thinking part (such as it is) of your brain leads you to reject all criticism with dogmatic certainty. But those who read our exchanges will judge for themselves, which is all that concerns me.

          As a hopeless God addict, you’re beyond the reach of reason. The cold light of day can’t compare to the ecstasy of your self-induced Godgasms, can it? But I hope that when others realise how much harm you do, they’ll think twice about getting hooked on the drug you peddle.

          • William Lewis

            Piffle.

          • “I’m here to present you with the truth …. “

            By compulsive deception about your identity? Sure, that’ll work. Does it stimulate your dopamine levels?

          • Holger

            Compulsive deception about my identity?

            And your name is really Happy Jack, is it? Or should that be Dodo.

            Pot. Kettle. Black…

      • O dear, have you been outed again, Linus? Your embarrassment is understandable but your defense is shabby; the addict is you. Obsessive running around the net, seeking attention and admiration under an endless series of pseudonyms as a young, new and exciting firebrand, while re-posting the same old shit you cobbled together in your better days.

        • dannybhoy

          Sadly true.

          • Pubcrawler

            And truly sad.

        • len

          LOL. same shit , different sites

          • dannybhoy

            Len!!
            I’m surprised at you!

          • len

            I need one of Jacks’ hail Mary’ passes or whatever he calls them?.

          • dannybhoy

            Yes indeed, but whether our Jack will be disposed to obtain one for you is another matter. Might need to brush up on your rendition of ‘Hail Mary, full of Grace”
            It’s that, the cilice for forty days and forty nights or the metal cilice for a week.
            (but looks odd under tight trousers..)

          • len

            Perhaps if I get some rosary beads that might clinch the deal?.

          • An indulgence, Len?

            One has to be a faithful Christian, duly disposed, and they are only given under prescribed conditions through the Catholic Church. One has to be in the state of grace, which means receiving the sacrament of confession.

          • len

            Can I just count the rosary beads then?.

          • Can you? Jack doesn’t know what your numerical ability is. However, you may count your fingers and toes for all Jack cares.

          • len

            That`ll work just as well then?.

          • For you nothing short of conversion will “work”, Len.

          • len

            Been there, done that Jack

        • dannybhoy

          “O dear, have you been outed again, Linus?”
          He has a very big closet.

          • Pubcrawler

            He needs somewhere to keep all these disguises, after all.

          • CliveM

            Ooops that was a big fat fail, will try again!

          • Pubcrawler

            huh?

          • CliveM

            Tried to post an image and failed. Still failing!

          • Pubcrawler

            Something along these lines, by any chance?

            https://68.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_ltufwdPEer1qc7o75o1_500.gif

          • CliveM

            It’s like you read my mind

          • Pubcrawler

            *must. resist. temptation. must. resist. temptation*

        • Holger

          A better description of your career as an artist I could not have come up with myself, except that you lack the shame that any halfway self-aware human being would feel at foisting such trash on the world. You actually seem to be proud to put your name to it!

          Don’t give up the day job, will you? Few would mourn you, I’m sure, if you starved in a garret. But if the etiolated genome that produced you has managed to propagate itself in viable offspring, one can only imagine they’ll have special needs and will need a father to look after them and fund their care.

          No surprise you chose Canada as your spawning ground. Socialised healthcare to look after any child that survives birth. A stock of big-boned, healthy brood mothers whose vigorous DNA could hopefully palliate the worst shortcomings of your own. I’m sure you would have preferred the US, but you’re realistic enough to understand that your progeny would have been doomed there.

          Even in Canada it must be a struggle though. So keep driving that truck. Gotta keep the wolf from the door until another fat nouveau riche family from Winnepeg or Saskatoon comes looking for a cheesy group portrait.

          In the meantime, keep on vomiting your bile and hatred here. For all the effect it has on me, you might as well get it out of your system. We can all forgive the anger of an artiste raté. It can’t be easy being you.

          • Thank you for your kind critique, but far too lean on the specifics and much too heavy on career advice. Still, I appreciate your warming up too me and trying to establish positive dialogue. In your own way.

            You might be pleased to learn that I have combined trucking with illustration, where I bring along my doodle pad, crayons and digital tablet. This way I can provide both inferior art and engage in dangerous driving.

          • Holger

            Establish positive dialogue with a right-wing homophobe? With an anti-immigrant immigrant? With someone who took advantage of an open door policy and now wants to slam the door in the faces of those who’d like to follow him?

            Positive dialogue requires common ground. We have none. I find you and your kind objectionable in the extreme. I’m here to debunk your myths and memes and have no desire to engage in small talk. You might as well ask an African American to engage in polite chit chat with a white supremacist.

          • Ok, ok, you drive a hard bargain. I’ll accept your portrait price offer if both of you love birds wear tuxes instead of frilly dresses. Plain tuxes; no crazy riverboat captain paisley, garish cravats, nor overflowing fruitbowls on the table or butt-naked cherubs lobbing arrows in the background. Keep it simple (think 21st century Puritan) and I’ll thrown in that wedding anniversary cake you’ve been having trouble ordering. Deal?

          • Holger

            Crétin.

      • “So yes, religion is an addictive substance. Or at least, the brain reacts to it as if it were. Which is why if anyone’s partner were to become a Christian and start agonising over the morality of their relationship, my advice would be to walk out and leave him to it. In any battle between an addict’s habit and his loved ones, the habit always wins. Cut your losses and get out while you can.”
        Is this the root of your malice, Linus? A previous “friend” became a Christian? And what you’ve overlooked is that certain unusual sexual activities are also addictive.

        • Holger

          I have never had a relationship with a Christian, nor with anyone who became a Christian, or who embraced any other religion come to that.

          “Spiritual” people, i.e. those who let their imaginations run away with them, hold little interest for me. I’m attracted to reason and rationality, not fantasy and delusion.

          Of course in life one sometimes meets Christians while going about one’s business. But one doesn’t get involved with them. Can. Worms. Totally not worth it.

          Just as one gives the crazies one encounters in the Tube or the street a wide berth, one also (metaphorically) crosses the road when a Christian hoves into view. They’re easy to spot. If they’re not waving a cross or a crucifix ostentatiously about the place, the razor-sharp creases down the front of their supermarket jeans are a dead giveaway.

          • Dominic Stockford

            “”Spiritual” people, i.e. those who let their imaginations run away with them, hold little interest for me”

            What on earth are you doing here having an online relationship with us all then? Rather lacking in consistency.

          • Holger

            I’m having a relationship with nobody on this site. Perish the thought. I don’t fraternize with Christians and homophobes. There’s no point.

            I merely state my point of view and debunk the religious nonsense so many of you spout. That’s why I’m here.

            You’re not the kind of people I would choose to have anything to do with any more than an African American would want to associate with members of the KKK. But your attacks and campaign of defamation against the LGBT community can’t go unchallenged.

          • Dominic Stockford

            “I merely state my point of view and debunk the religious nonsense so many of you spout.”

            That’s a relationship.

    • The Explorer

      Certainly seems like our boy; although more technical than his typical contributions here. Maybe he feels that Cranmerites are so stupid (being Christian) that he has to temper what he writes accordingly.

      • dannybhoy

        He is much more subdued isn’t he…

    • Anton

      And I have replied to it.

      • dannybhoy

        I just knew you would.

    • dannybhoy

      I was going to comment there but decided against it… bust I shall follow developments with interest. Especially to see if and how he responds to Christine…

    • bluedog

      A troubled soul indeed.

    • Goodness. How did you find that?

  • HedgehogFive

    The Provost is quoted as saying he looks forward to the day when he can marry same-sex couples in church.

    To Hedgehog eyes, that looks like he is sailing dangerously close to praying for his will to be done in Heaven the way it appears to be going on Earth.

    • The Explorer

      Here’s hoping the good Provost says this to his Muslim friends (with a view to Muslims following suit in mosques) as part of his helping to build relationships between Christians and Muslims in Glasgow

  • IrishNeanderthal

    The Very Reverend Kelvin Holdsworth is, from whatever motive, acting like General Wu Sangui, who in 1644 brought to an end the Ming Dynasty by opening the gates of the Great Wall to let in the Manchu invaders, rather than give way to those lower-class Chinese rebels who were overthrowing the establishment.

    China was then subjected to nearly three hundred years of rule by a foreign dynasty. But at least the Manchus, although keeping themselves aloof, did adopt a large measure of Chinese culture and civilization.

  • Lisa Nolland

    Thank you! I have good Islamic mates and we share much but agree to disagree on such matters. We differ profoundly and it is ridiculous to think otherwise. Far better to be honest. Excellent analysis, Dr Ashenden.

    • Anton

      Yes, I had a Muslim friend on the same cricket team until I moved town. I’d gladly make more Muslim friends. But take a precedent from the Spanish Civil War: there were plenty of people who were friends yet who fought on opposite sides when the crunch came.

      • David

        Quite !

    • David

      Exactly we can engage in contact at a social level. But spiritually Christians will always have very significant differences with them, as we do not share the same God. That is the more honest approach and more likely to build respect I’d say.

  • John

    Holdsworth has made a very serious error and is in breach of his ordination vows to uphold the Christian faith expressed in the holy scriptures and catholic creeds. He should do the decent thing and resign.

    • Anton

      If that is the criterion for resigning, how many bishops would remain in view of the prevalence of liberal theology among them?

      • Merchantman

        Most.

  • Melt van der Spuy

    This is a Cathedral… A Cathedral that holds to all the beliefs, tenets and practices of the Christian faith. Whether one believes and follows these tenets and beliefs, or considers them bizarre is not really the point. The point is that there is no place for the reading of a different text – which Christians do not regard as inspired – in a distinctly Christian context! That as expectation is tantamount to joining a football club and complaining that they don’t allow badminton to be played on the football field while the footballers are playing football. Interfaith dialogue and cooperation as it relates to issues that effect all of humanity is one thing…purity of worship is another…entirely. Holdsworth should resign or be made to resign, but it won’t happen. It won’t happen because the C of E (in this case manifested in the Scottish Episcopal expression thereof) has no juridical body. They have various ‘instruments of unity’ such as Lambeth, the ACC and the Arch of Canterbury. The instruments of unity are there as a means of pursuing the ‘Anglican Way’ which seeks to find common ground and unity on all potentially divisive issues. The problem being that Provincial or local autonomy outweighs the ‘seeking of unity’ regarding divisive issues time and again, further fragmenting and already fragmented community.

    • dannybhoy

      Well said Melt. See my comment below to David, and may the Lord bless and strengthen you.
      Btw did you see my interaction with Anton re judgement?

      • Melt van der Spuy

        I did not your Grace, but I shall have a look!

        • dannybhoy

          Your Grace??
          That’s the boss of the blog’s title..

          • Melt van der Spuy

            Indeed…I promoted you! (:

          • dannybhoy

            If you could make me thirty years younger I’d prefer it…

          • Melt van der Spuy

            Hmmm, that too will come I’m sure; but you might have to wait till you are raised in glory!

          • dannybhoy

            That day draws ever nearer, and in various small ways we (the wife and I), are divesting ourselves of excess clutter..

  • Anton

    For the record, and with thanks to Jack below for finding this critique:

    http://www.psephizo.com/life-ministry/is-jesus-begotten-of-the-father/

    I have personally verified, from this transliteration of the Arabic of the quran

    http://www.islamicbulletin.org/free_downloads/quran/quran_transliteration.pdf

    into the English alphabet, that she ran through verses 16 to 36 inclusive of sura 19, occasionally repeating a phrase, and with standard opening and closing phrases. Verse 16 begins at 21s and verse 36 ends at 9:11. Here is an English translation:

    http://www.quranbrowser.org/quran/frames/ch19.html

    The printed order of service stops at verse 33, and verses 34-6 include denial that the creator God has a son. How the discrepancy arose between the printed order of service and what actually happened is not currently in the public domain.

    • Pubcrawler

      Suspicious minds might see an element of deceit there. cui bono? Not the litigious law student, that’s for sure… fine, upstanding model of probity, she.

      • Anton

        One could prepare a set of questions to put to her, courteously of course.

        • Happy Jack doubts you’ll get answers. He has posted these questions on Kelvin Holdsworth’s blog and is awaiting a reply. Here’s a flavour of his defensiveness:

          So it has indeed come as something of a surprise to find accounts of last week’s service appearing online and stirring up the most incredible pot of hatred I’ve ever encountered. (And I’m a veteran of the sex wars amongst Anglicans).

          We’ve received Islamophobic and other hate filled messages so graphic and some of them so obscene that we eventually called the police, whom I have to say have been excellent at supporting us.

          There are theological puzzles to wrestle with of course.

          This same Qur’anic reading has been given before in services and no outcry has happened. Is it because this is in a cathedral run by a gay man? Is it because the recitation was given by a young woman?

          Clearly those things are factors as they feature in some of the abuse.

          It’s all because he’s homosexual and the Muslim was a woman.

          • William Lewis

            Yes. It’s clear that all his critics will have phobias of one sort or another. No doubt about it.

          • Happy Jack most certainly has a phobia about wolves in sheep’s clothing.

            “Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”

          • Merchantman

            Lupophobia.

          • William Lewis

            Indeed Jack. Fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom.

    • magnolia

      No one seems to have expressed an opinion upon other facets here, like the baby Jesus as orator and theologian…How does that square with orthodox incarnational theology?

      • Anton

        The real winning argument is that the quran contains contradictions, which Muslims accept or they would not have developed the doctrine that the later verse takes precedence over a verse given to Muhammad earlier where they clash; yet the quran is supposed to be the word of an omniscient deity.

        • Merchantman

          References to Allah are in the 3rd person whereas He spoke and was in the 1st.
          Primary evidence of not right stuff.

      • Anna

        Mohammed also believed that the virgin Mary was Miriam, the sister of Moses and Aaron, ignoring the thousands of years that separated the two Miriams. Yet, they claim is that Christians and Jews corrupted the scriptures.

        • len

          The Koran is riddled with errors.

          • Roddy Neilson

            And the bible isn’t?

          • Anna

            No, it isn’t.

          • Roddy Neilson

            I suggest you don’t know very much about the bible.

          • Anna

            So what are these errors, since you know so much?

          • Roddy Neilson

            Try here for starters:

            http://www.bidstrup.com/bible2

          • Anna

            Thanks, but I couldn’t open the link. But surely you should be able to give one or two quick examples of these numerous errors, with your expertise.

          • Roddy Neilson

            John 10:30 vs John 14:28 on the nature of the Trinity or Genesis 32:30 vs John 1:18 on the manifestation of the divine.

            As or the crucifixion and resurrection the bible has, to put it mildly, a few difficulties when it comes to the Gospels. Explain the following – When the sun was coming up (Matt. 28:1) while it was still dark (John 20:1), Mary Magdalene (John 20:1) or Mary Magdalene and the other Mary (Matt 28:1) or “the women” [note the plural] (Luke 24:1) went to the tomb. There was an earthquake, and an angel came down and rolled the stone away (Matt. 28:2) from the entrance of the tomb and sat on it, even though it had apparently already been rolled away when Mary Magdalene had got there (John 20:1, Mark 16:4, Luke 24:2). The reason for the visit was to anoint the body with spices (Mark 16:1, Luke 24:1) or just to look at the tomb (Matt. 28:1), take your pick.

            Consistency isn’t the bible’s strong point.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Let’s have a go at the narrative of the resurrection then.

            When the sun was coming up (Matt. 28:1) while it was still dark (John 20:1), Mary Magdalene (John 20:1) or Mary Magdalene and the other Mary (Matt 28:1) or “the women” [note the plural] (Luke 24:1) went to the tomb. There was an earthquake, and an angel came down and rolled the stone away (Matt. 28:2) from the entrance of the tomb and sat on it, even though it had apparently already been rolled away when Mary Magdalene had got there (John 20:1, Mark 16:4, Luke 24:2). The reason for the visit was to anoint the body with spices (Mark 16:1, Luke 24:1) or just to look at the tomb (Matt. 28:1), take your pick.

            Consistency isn’t the bible’s strong point

          • Roddy Neilson

            I suggest you know very little about the bible.

      • Martin

        Magnolia

        It appears very late & in Gnostic ‘gospels’. It has no relevance.

    • David

      Handy bit of detective work.

    • Dominic Stockford

      Irrelevant. None of the Koran should have been read at all.

  • preacher

    We are the ” People of The Book ” Not the people of A Book. Scripture is more than just a set of rules, or suggestions. We rightly call it the Word of God & believe that the Lord Jesus Christ is that word made flesh. He made statements & promises that affect every human being eternally, for a person claiming to be a Christian to challenge them, is to call God a liar.
    people can choose to reject them, or believe in who ever or what ever they want, but those that have, truthfully put their hands to the plough must not look back.
    For a Christian, especially one employed by the Church to be able to make such an error is beyond belief. The ramifications do not stop there ! How many people, including Muslims will eternally miss their chance of salvation that Christ paid so dearly for ? I speak to, & have friends from many, & no faiths, that know nothing of the gospel – many Muslims even ask me if Christians believe in God’s judgement & the existence of Hell !.
    The choice of faith is not a ‘Pick & mix ‘ sweet shop & any Minister or member of clergy who thinks that it is, should resign & leave.
    Anyone can make a mistake, & we must not seek retribution, but if a road Accident is caused by a bad driver there is a high price to pay, should an error of such spiritual gravity just be shrugged off ?.

    • David

      Amen to that !

  • Merchantman

    Shocking. Absolutely shocking ignorance on the part of the Provost. He should go and go quickly.

    • Eeyore C

      Even though I am dismayed and hold to a different interpretation of certain texts the staff and clergy at St Mary’s are kindly, well- meaning Christians. No; the offense was caused by the Moslem reader who evidently decided to misuse Christian goodwill and hospitality for their own spiritual ends. But as we know God is not mocked.
      If anyone wants to know how such a thing can have come about I highly recommend the teaching DVD SISTER RELIGIONS? THrough one to one interviews Rev D Drurie and Dr MIchael Nazir Ali look at Islamic concepts of Truth, good and evil and Gods nature in a calm, rational and thoughtful way. Their conclusion is that whilst Judaism and Chrsitianity share the same basic concepts Islam does not..

  • Eeyore C

    Passing by St Mary’s yesterday I noticed a lovely new sign outside advertising themselves as ” open” and “inclusive”. Of course this is newspeak for ” We approve of homosexuality unlike the Evangelical sister church just down the road” So the Cathedral has a history of wrenching the true cause the false way I am afraid. But if you hold the Christian scriptures lightly, to be reinterpreted at will, it might seem no big thing to have someone elses scriptures read out.

    • len

      We do God, but not very much?.

      • grutchyngfysch

        We are a Synagogue of Satan would be the most accurate sign they could erect.

        • amie

          Kindly don’t bring synagogues into this.

          • grutchyngfysch

            Happy to clarify that I am using language from Scripture (the specific word in question having much more generic meaning in its original context – as in James 2:2 – but I accept modern usage does not reflect this) to describe a situation analogous to Revelation 2:9 and 3:9 where an assembly masquerading under a Christian identity is instead actively advancing in both its theology of sin and recent actions an anti-Gospel message.

            Incidentally, if you’re interested, Justin Martyr thought the original reference in Revelation was to Samaritan followers of Simon Magus (not coincidentally also a lover of syncretic religion). Properly qualified, I’m happy to stand by that phrase on all the above grounds.

          • Pubcrawler

            Yep. συναγωγή is the Greek equivalent of Latin congregatio.

        • Roddy Neilson

          Have you a problem with synagogues?

      • Dominic Stockford

        Or, in line with some advert or another, “We do any God…”

      • Roddy Neilson

        Have you ever attended a service in that church? If not I suggest you do before making fatuous comments.

    • Roddy Neilson

      Which is more important to you? Homophobia or your version of Christian orthodoxy? From the order of your comments it would seem homophobia wins.

  • Happy Jack has posted the following questions on Kelvin Holdsworth’s blog:

    Hi Kelvin,

    Can you please explain why the printed order of service stops at verse 33, and yet the actual recital included verses 34-6 of Sura 19 which include denial that the Creator God has a son? How did this discrepancy arise between the printed order of service and what actually happened?

    Many thanks.

    It is awaiting moderation before being published and hopefully answered.

    http://thurible.net/2017/01/13/keeping-the-faith/

    • Anton

      Neither will you, Jack: your question has been removed. I infer that he finds the question embarrassing. Let it be asked again of him and of his superiors.

      • Happy Jack received a reply:

        Kelvin says:

        13/01/2017 at 20:31

        Thanks for your question. I can’t explain that as I don’t know the answer and it might not be possible for me to get an answer to that question. However, I don’t think anyone was being malicious or trying to get one over the Christians.

        Indeed, I have found all involved in this service to have been gracious and kind to one another throughout all this.

        The text that was printed in the service sheet is what we expected to be read- Sura Maryam 19 verses 16-33. I don’t have Arabic and given how difficult it was for me to acquire appalling Hebrew, I am unlikely ever to attempt to learn.

        I won’t be publishing any further questions or responses in connection with this as I’ve said above all that I know and am likely to know.

        It’s a question at the heart of the discussion and he really should seek an explanation.

        • Anton

          Yes, I can see it now; I had wrongly inferred that he had pulled your question when in fact it was awaiting moderation and not visible to third parties. In view of his reply, however, I continue to believe that he finds it embarrassing.

          Move along, nothing to see…

          • It’s gross incompetency at best ….

          • Anton

            I’ve just edited the post to which you replied, making a suggestion…

          • Jack can try but he’s made it clear he’ll be saying no more:

            “I won’t be publishing any further questions or responses in connection with this as I’ve said above all that I know and am likely to know.”

            But your question is a solid one and Jack has asked it:

            Happy Jack says:

            13/01/2017 at 21:27

            Your comment is awaiting moderation.

            Kelvin,

            Thank you for your gracious and open response. Without wishing to labour the point, can you clarify the basis for your expectation that the reading of Sura Maryam 19 would be verses 16-33 and not include 34 – 36?

            Many thanks.

            Really, he can’t answer. He’ll either be shown as incompetent for not identifying the blasphemous verses and ensuring their exclusion, or he’ll have to admit he was deceived.

          • Anton

            That was the point of the question, although one should never rule out unexpected answers. Do please let me know, by replying to this present comment, when something happens to your question (ie, he replies or deletes it). I’m not likely to be online this weekend.

          • Happy Jack’s question was deleted without reply.

          • bluedog

            Got him! Clearly a deeply embarrassed and hopefully ashamed man.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Well he wasn’t this morning when he preached at Eucharist…

            https://www.facebook.com/openinclusivewelcoming/videos/10154318577567339/

          • bluedog

            Clearly Holdsworth has the strength of character and the bravado to take the only way out. But in moments of quiet reflection?

          • Roddy Neilson

            I make no windows into his soul.

          • Dreadnaught

            You obviously touched the right nerve – well done.

          • Anton

            He’s deleted the entire thread!

          • Goodness!

          • Anton

            Or maybe not – please see my exchange with Pubcrawler elsewhere on this thread. I can’t see it, at least. Can you?

    • carl jacobs

      Good work, Jack.

      • Thank you, Carl. That’s appreciated.

  • magnolia

    Matthew 10.33
    “Whoever denies me before others, I will deny before my Father in Heaven” said Jesus.

    Which part of this exactly is incomprehensible? It’s not open to different interpretations, is it? There is no excuse.

    Perhaps the one I pity the most in this is the ignorant and wilful schoolgirl. It will be a heavy load of guilt and shame she bears, and I pray that she repents her part in this.

    This awful wailing sound above the eagle of St John in the lectern (how COULD they?) was not what their ancestors risked their lives trying to protect, not what they worked for.

    “Oh foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you , that you should start with grace and end with works”

    • Happy Jack would assign no culpability to Madinah Javed. Reading her Facebook account suggests her motives were sound. She is Muslim and, unlike Kelvin Holdsworth, makes no claims to be a Christian.

      • magnolia

        So who put her up to it? The Muslim community know well how offensive this verse is to Christians. If you go to Nazareth there is a stroppy trio of Muslims with a placard with this verse sitting near the Christian church as an irritant, and it was written to cover a whole page by a visiting Muslim in my church’s visitors’ book.

        It is appalling to accuse Christians of blasphemy in their core belief at their own lectern in their own church. We have a duty not only to Jesus and to our brothers and sisters in Christ, but also to stop people indulging, and thereby growing, their dark side by doing this.

        • “So who put her up to it?”

          Jack presumes she was invited by Kevin Holdsworth. Whether she went beyond an agreed text for the recital is unclear and Kevin Holdsworth is, to date, not commenting on this aspect. Conspiracy or cock-up has yet to be determined.

          “It is appalling to accuse Christians of blasphemy in their core belief at their own lectern in their own church.”

          Agreed.

          • Merchantman

            We shouldn’t be surprised should we? When an unbiblical and unlearned Weakness meets an old opponent unashamedly doing it by its book; this is what you get.

      • Anton

        The key question is whether she had agreed to stop at verse 33.

        • Kevin Holdsworth has replied to Happy Jack’s inquiry:

          “I can’t explain that as I don’t know the answer and it might not be possible for me to get an answer to that question … “

          (Not if you don’t ask for an explanation, no. Then, that might sour interfaith relationships.)

          “However, I don’t think anyone was being malicious or trying to get one over the Christians … “

          (That’s what you need to establish. A blasphemous chant denying Christ’s Divinity was sung at your Eucharist celebration. Ignorance is no excuse.)

          “The text that was printed in the service sheet is what we expected to be read- Sura Maryam 19 verses 16-33.”

          Then find out why this didn’t happen.

        • Dominic Stockford

          Doesn’t really matter – she shouldn’t have been allowed to read, nor should anything from the Koran have been read.

          • To show tolerance, respect and interfaith friendship she should have simply just attended the service and not read or sung anything at all from the koran.

    • Dominic Stockford

      Absolutely. There should not have been ANY non-Christian reading taking place in a Christian service.

  • William Lewis

    ” The Provost might consider apologising to Christians, especially those who have suffered so deeply at the hands of a re-energised Islam that has violently assaulted Christians and the Christian faith across countries and continents, from Europe to Australia.”

    Or

    He might consider hiding the evidence and going on the offensive.

    • He’s a veteran of the sex wars amongst Anglicans, don’t ya know.

      • William Lewis

        I’m not even sure what that means.

        • magnolia

          Not sure I want to.

    • Dominic Stockford

      You’re right – it appears the latter is the case. The act of someone who knows they’ve got it wrong but doesn’t know why.

  • Oh dear, oh dear. On his blog profile, Kelvin Holdsworth states:

    “I’m unashamed of having learned more about liturgy from the theatre than from the church.”

    One couldn’t make this up!

    • CliveM

      Which must suggest he is more interested in theatricality of the liturgy, then the puppies of it.

      • Puppies?
        His blog suggests he is an attention seeker, not a truth seeker.

      • William Lewis

        And the costumes are just fabulous!

        • He’s a homosexual what do you expect.

          • John

            35th in the 2015 Most Influential LGBT People List in the UK. Staking a claim for the Top 30. Just fancy that!

          • Roddy Neilson

            And you’re a homophobic bigot. Happy now?

          • Martin

            Roddy

            Ah, the magic word which should make us all disappear.

          • Roddy Neilson

            No – just reflect on what you’re saying. If you replaced ‘homosexual’ with ‘black’ or ‘disabled’ would it be acceptable?

          • Martin

            Roddy

            So now you are being racist. ‘black’ and ‘disabled’ refer to something that is not chosen, homosexuality is always chosen.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Deary me. There’s a sweeping misconception if ever there was one.

          • Martin

            Roddy

            All sin is chosen.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Even original sin?

          • No, and you’re wrong.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Nope. Your a homophobic bigot. Stating, ‘he’s a homosexual what do you expect’ shouts it.

          • Roddy Neilson

            No you are a homophobic bigot. Stating, ‘he’s a homosexual what do you expect’ is homophobic bigotry.

        • Roddy Neilson

          The music’s pretty wonderful as well.

          • William Lewis

            If it is the theatre of the liturgy that inspires, then one would hope that it is a sensual, aural and visual delight.

          • Roddy Neilson

            It is all that and a spiritual one as well.

          • Martin

            Roddy

            Nothing of the truly spiritual about it.

          • Roddy Neilson

            How would you know? It doesn’t fit with your prejudices so it’s not spiritual? Errrr…. nonsense.

          • Martin

            Roddy

            It doesn’t fit the Bible.

          • William Lewis

            Yes. A spirit that is happy to allow the divinity of Christ to be denied.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Only to you William.

          • William Lewis

            Is the Provost unhappy that the divinity of Christ was denied from his pulpit? If so, it’s not just me who is unaware of this.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Hmmm. Your last post indicates you really don’t know what happened. However, why let facts challenge your predudice, eh?

          • William Lewis

            By all means, please challenge my prejudice with some facts. I am all eyes.

          • Roddy Neilson

            I suggest you look at the Epiphany service as it was conducted. You’ll find it on the web.

          • William Lewis

            Why do you suggest this? What do you hope it will show?

          • Roddy Neilson

            I suggest it because you clearly have no idea as to the entirety of what happened during that service. You assume that it was not a Christian service – it was. Your Christian faith must be exceptionally shallow if you believe that one reading from the Koran negates the validity of the Christian witness observed and celebrated at that service.

          • William Lewis

            Who is denying that there was Christian witness during the service? It was the specific denial of the Christ that we are talking about here! That denial was a disgraceful betrayal for which there has been no apology. The Provost claims that the theatre has taught him about the liturgy. It’s not unreasonable to assume that he is perfectly happy with the drama that has unfolded.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Where exactly did that denial take place? Was it in the opening sentences, the prayers of confession, the Gospel reading, the Nicene Creed, the Eucharistic prayer? Was it in the proclamation that Christ has died, Christ has risen and Christ will come again? According to you none of that matters – your faith is so weak that it a) can’t set one reading in context and b) believes one reading from the Koran overturns any Christian expression of faith.

            As for your comments on the theatre etc – have you actually ever seen a service conducted by Kelvin Holdsworth? Or do you prefer opining from a position of ignorance?

          • William Lewis

            “According to you none of that matters – your faith is so weak that it a) can’t set one reading in context and b) believes one reading from the Koran overturns any Christian expression of faith.”

            It’s because I believe that it matters very much that I find the denial of the Christ in this context so offensive and the subsequent defense of this betrayal, instead of an apology and admission of error, by you and the Provost so damning.

            As it stands, this is, at best, misguided religious syncretism, or worse, devilry masquerading as Christian worship.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Yours is a shallow faith that can’t see the wood for the trees. Enjoy it but don’t expect real Christians to take you seriously.

          • William Lewis

            “Yours is a shallow faith that can’t see the wood for the trees. Enjoy it but don’t expect real Christians to take you seriously.”

            Really? A real Christian would ignore a denial of the Christ from the pulpit of a, supposedly, Christian service? I think you are either deluded or deceived.

      • Roddy Neilson

        I suggest you attend worship led by him rather than comment from a position of ignorance.

        • Martin

          Roddy

          As above, a mass isn’t Christian worship.

          • Roddy Neilson

            To you mibbe. Not to others.

          • Martin

            Roddy

            To the Christian.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Your faith must be very shallow if it can only define itself by what it dislikes.

          • Martin

            Roddy

            Who said that was the case? That the Mass isn’t Christian is beyond dispute.

          • Roddy Neilson

            I dispute it as do other Anglicans.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Only to you

        • CliveM

          Ready how would that change anything? I’m going by what he’s said, or is that not worth doing?

          • Roddy Neilson

            Would you be defined only by what you say? I suggest you are speaking from a position that, for whatever reason, doesn’t want fact to get in the way of prejudice. You may not like High Church Anglicanism but that’s nothing to do with its liturgy and practice and a lot to do with your prejudice. Why not just admit it?

  • len

    Even the eagle on the lectern looks as if its had enough and is about to fly off and look for another Church.

  • J McCarthy

    Similar to what happened to S Maria in Trastavere ironically in a ceremony to honour Fr Jacques Hamel: instead of us discussing stuff which we may never agree on, perhaps churches should share these experiences and advise each other so they don’t end up in ridiculous situations like this.

    • Dominic Stockford

      They don’t need to discuss anything – they should simply NEVER, NEVER, NEVER allow so-called ‘scriptures’ from false religions to be used in their buildings or services. Nor should those who are not committed Christians be allowed to take an active part in a Christian service. No more problems.

      • Anton

        I agree with you, of course. The comments of mine to which you replied were seeking to clarify whether the chanter had agreed to stop at v33 or not.

  • Joseph D’Hippolito

    Is this a Catholic, C of E or C of Scotland church? Then again, speaking as a former Catholic, it probably doesn’t matter, given the conditions all three denomination are in.

    • Merchantman

      C of Scotland.

      • Joseph D’Hippolito

        Thanks. I take it the more Calvinist Scottish Presbyterians aren’t into this kind of stuff?

        • It’s an Episcopalian Cathedral – not Anglican.

          • Merchantman

            Thanks.

          • What’s the difference between an Episcopalian Cathedral and an Anglican one?

          • Er, nothing? Probably. Jack meant to say it wasn’t Church of Scotland. Episcopalians are members of the Anglican communion but not Church of England. Jack will correct it.

      • Episcopalian – part of the Anglican communion – not Church of Scotland.

  • magnolia

    And I thought you were dogwhistling bluedog!

    • CliveM

      I really must check before I click post!

  • Percy Gryce

    We’ll put.

  • O Adigun

    Oh, I miss the ACTS of the emissaries of Yeshua the Messiah, Apostles of the early Church: Shim’on, called Kefa (Peter), Andrew his brother, Ya’akov Ben Zavdai (James, son of Zebedee), Yochanan, his brother (John), Philip, Bar-Talmai (Bartholomew), Mattityahu (Matthew), Ya’akov Bar-Halfai (James, son of Alpheus) and Taddi (Thaddeus), Shim’on the Zealot (Simon, the Canaanite)…and our beloved humble servant, Sh’aul (Paul the Apostle)…
    What would they have done, being filled with the Holy Ghost and with power? Lord, send Your Spirit upon us, to preach Messiah Yeshua and Him crucified, and raised again, to the whole world. Amen!!!

  • A statement from Bishop David Chillingworth, Primus of the Scottish Episcopal Church:

    http://www.bishopdavid.net/2017/01/the-koran-reading-in-st-marys-cathedral-glasgow-pisky-anglican/

    • IanCad

      “If you find yourself in a hole, stop digging”

    • Martin

      There seems a marked lack of understanding of what Christianity is. I’ve left a comment, I doubt it will pass moderation:

      “I’m afraid the whole concept of ‘interfaith relations’ is in error. The Bible is quite clear:

      Jesus said to him, I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6 [ESV])

      There can be no truth in other religions, they are simply man made, nothing else. There can be no reconciling between them and Christ, for they lead men to damnation. There is no possibility of light mixing with darkness.”

    • Dreadnaught

      Having read the referenced article it sounds exactly like the political doublespeak that makes Farage look like the only politician speaking plain English.
      Nowhere does Chillingworth mention the fact that ten minutes of the most damning Koranic liturgy was included in a Christian service.
      Wanting to be friends with Muslims is all well and good – showing yourself and your Faith to be ignorant yet useful idiots is simply sucidal. How it must be making Muslims fall about with laughter.

    • chefofsinners

      I thought a Primus was something which takes gas that is under pressure and converts it into hot air?

  • pretty sure she was saying

    “Ash nazg durbatulûk, ash nazg gimbatul,
    ash nazg thrakatulûk, agh burzum-ishi krimpatul.”

    Interesting to see the homosexualist-Islamist axis at work.

    What do these 2 movements have in common?

    • Anton

      Google Translate doesn’t do the Dark Tongue of Mordor.

      • “One ring to rule them all, one ring to find them,
        One ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them.”

  • PS wonder if they will publish the ‘hate mail’. You know, just so I know what I am not allowed to say because I will be arrested by the thought police. Would also be nice to see details of the senders so we can be sure it wasn’t false flag.

    Of course, any threats of violence would be out of order and deserve investigation, but I have heard this ‘OOO!!! UMMM!!!! I was sent HATE MAIL!!!’ and so therefore my cause is just and everyone who disagrees with me must be evil and the Authority must silence them.

    Is, for example the phrase

    ‘If anyone comes to you preaching a different gospel, (*) let them be damned to hell’

    hate speech? If so, Paul’s letter to the Galatians must be banned.

    (*) as Muhammed did

  • Inspector General

    Holdsworth is claiming misrepresentation of the facts. The Inspector does not concur. In fact, Holdsworth is very pally with his muslim mates as you will read below. Over to you fellows…
    ————————————————————-
    http://thurible.net/2017/01/13/keeping-the-faith/
    ————————————————————-

    • That blog article that he’s written shrieks ignorance of the Koran at you.

      It’s all very well moaning about hate mail, but were was the proof? Why didn’t he include any of it in his article?

      • Inspector General

        ♪ “A man believes what he wants to believe and disregards the rest”

        • He’s treating the Cathedral as a venue for him staging “Sunday Night at the Palladium”!

          • Roddy Neilson

            No – for Choral Evensong. If you think that’s ‘Sunday Night at the Palldium’ you need to get out more.

          • Martin

            Roddy

            He speaks of Choral Mass, which is more akin to [email protected] than anything Christian.

          • Roddy Neilson

            Well all that comment suggests is you don’t know very much about Anglican worship and the Anglican choral tradition. Nor about the 1982 Scottish Liturgy of the SEC.

          • Martin

            Roddy

            I attended an Anglican boarding school and was a chorister in my youth. I know how such things relate, and sometimes do not, to the Bible. A Mass is, in any case, heretical.

          • He’s in the wrong vocation Roddy. He would be better suited to be a Theatre Manager in the entertainments industry.

          • Roddy Neilson

            You’ll have attended one of the services he’s conducted to be able to make that comment? Or are you simply happy to make vacuous comments with no evidence?

        • Anton

          If that’s Simon and Garfunkel’s The Boxer then I’m afraid the verb is “hears”, not “believes”.

      • Roddy Neilson

        Perhaps you’d like to contact Police Scotland who were given all the relevant mail etc? No?

        • Inspector General

          One is highly suspicious of a unified Scottish constabulary operating under a de facto one party state of workers soviet flavour…

          • Roddy Neilson

            One is highly suspicious of someone who posts what he believes to be facts without checking.

          • Inspector General

            Come on then, spill your displeasure in full…

          • Roddy Neilson

            No no no! You can’t change the burden of proof. Where’s your evidence the hate mail does not exist?

          • Inspector General

            It is the Inspector’s experience to find what is considered ‘hate’ correspondence to the homosexual community is nothing more than strongly worded condemnation…

          • Roddy Neilson

            I don’t think the hate mail involved sexuality.

          • Inspector General

            Do you think it was questioning his suitability for the position he holds. That is then not hate mail…

          • Martin

            Roddy

            There’s been a number of occasions when Police Scotland have arrested Christian street preachers in questionable circumstances.

          • Roddy Neilson

            What’s that to do with hate mail?

      • Agreed. When someone cries ‘hate mail’ but doesn’t produce evidence, I am suspicious.

    • Martin

      IG

      One has to wonder what “One of the complaints was “It is all very well them allowing Muslims into church but why won’t they marry gay couples?” which clearly came from someone who doesn’t know much about us.” means. Does it mean that they do marry them? I can’t help feeling sorry for the Muslims who attended, they don’t appear to know what the gospel is.

      • Inspector General

        One is at a loss to understand Holdsworth, Martin. As well as being Christian he is an admitted homosexual. Could it be that his apparent delight in Islam, or at least his accepting Islamic friends of him is due to their friendship with him on a personal level? Does he not realise that in jihad Islam’s greater view, he is surplus to requirements and will be got rid of, twice over…

        • Martin

          IG

          And the Bible doesn’t consider him a Christian:

          Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived: neither the sexually immoral, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor men who practice homosexuality, nor thieves, nor the greedy, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, you were sanctified, you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God.
          (I Corinthians 6:9-11 [ESV])

          But that last verse gives him hope.

          • Inspector General

            Well, we don’t know if he is a practising homosexual, Martin. Does he frequent Glasgow’s gay bars to ‘unite’ with strangers, as homosexuals do…

          • Martin

            IG

            It depends if he considers himself homosexual, that is sufficient.

          • Roddy Neilson

            I defer to your clearly much better informed knowledge of the homosexual lifestyle (sic). Is there something you wish to share?

          • Inspector General

            Yes. The Inspector has been monitoring the Pink News site for over 5 years. An excellent source of insight into the workings of those blessed with the ability to, let’s call it, ‘interact’ with a fellow, many fellows, of the same sex..

          • Roddy Neilson

            Ah. Is your middle name Aslan then?

          • Roddy Neilson

            Methinks you doth protest too much…

          • Inspector General

            Ah yes. The tired idea that if anyone objects to organised buggery determining the future of the country, he is obviously a closet case. Just as every policeman is without doubt a criminal in denial…

          • Roddy Neilson

            No dear boy, I leave tired ideas to you.

          • Roddy Neilson

            ‘Organised buggery’? I hadn’t realised we went to the same boarding school?

          • Inspector General

            That comment of yours is enough for this man to ignore your sixth form witterings…

          • Roddy Neilson

            Oh I don’t know. I’ve put up with your infantile and prurient comments so far. You could at least return the compliment.

          • Roddy Neilson

            If you say so…

  • William Lewis

    According to Holdsworth:

    “That’s it in a nutshell. We don’t do syncretism, we do hospitality.”

    This just does not ring true. Since when has hospitality meant inviting someone into your church to denounce the very core of your beliefs? That is not hospitality. That is deliberate sabotage. Holdsworth has to admit the mistake or find a vocation that he actually believes in.

    • PreProle

      He comes across as one of those trendy types who believe in the tyranny of niceness.

    • bugalugs2

      But they don’t assault the very core of Holdsworth’s beliefs, do they, because he is obviously a naive moral relativist, not a Christian.

    • Anton

      And resign his salary?

      • William Lewis

        Yes, if he cannot apologise for the error.

    • chefofsinners

      “We don’t do syncretism, we do hospitality”
      Sounds good. Hospitality is commended in scripture, with the incentive that “some have entertained angels unawares”.
      I wonder whether Holdsworth was entertaining angels? Place your bets.

      • Entertaining Satan more like.

        • chefofsinners

          Perhaps the one thing that everyone involved will agree on is that Satan will find this whole situation highly entertaining.

          • Most definitely. I think he’s best friends with the Rev Kelvin Holdsworth.

      • The sort of angel that spoke to Muhammad perhaps? A Galatians 1:8 kind of angel?

  • LodeHere

    Only the spirit of anti-Christ denies Jesus Christ’s divinity. Period. The Koran suggests that Jesus let someone else be crucified in his place, and did nothing to stop it. And afterwards claimed he had died for the salvation of humanity and resurrected. So the idea spread through the Koran is that Jesus was a lying loveless hypocrite who allowed someone else to be killed in his stead so he could afterwards falsely claim the honor. If that is not the deceiving spirit called “anti-Christ” I don’t know what is… it is a direct attack on Jesus Christ in the form of a most blasphemous accusation. It is even attacking God the Father… saying He is no Father.

  • Pubcrawler

    Aw, have I missed a drive-by? Who is this Roddy chap who has deleted all his comments? Not yet another Linus incarnation, surely?

    • CliveM

      The Provosts boy friend I think.

      • William Lewis

        Careful Clive. Avi will have you up for sloppy apostrophe work! He’s a real stickler.

        • CliveM

          We’ll keep it as our little secret!

    • William Lewis

      FWIW, I have copied back Roddy’s comments into my part of the thread.

      • Pubcrawler

        Hmmm. Nothing there seems embarrassing or incriminating enough to merit a remorseful utter eradication.

    • Anton

      You’ve missed a much more important one. Holdsworth has deleted the entire comments thread beneath his original blog article on the service is question. Consequently, his statement that he “expected to be read- Sura Maryam 19 verses 16-33” in his reply to Jack’s probing questions are preserved now only in copies here.

      • Pubcrawler

        Intriguing… Unlucky for him that the internet never forgets.

      • Pubcrawler

        Just checked via the Inspector’s link, and comments are there.

        • Anton

          That’s odd. When I go to his blog I can see the number of comments per entry at the top and bottom of each entry, but none for that particular entry.

          Caches will soon stabilise and we shall find out.

          • Pubcrawler

            Perhaps it’s because comments are closed on that post. No shortage of warm, cuddly supportive comments on his latest (heavily moderated) post, though.

          • Anton

            Closed comments are usually viewable (as on this blog of Cranmer’s). I’ll back my guess that your ISP and mine have different cache refresh rates. I saw the what-a-hero-you-are gush on the newer thread, which Holdsworth frankly states is “heavily moderated”.

  • Another thing (and I have read the ‘bishop’s linked article with it’s broad includivist emotions) is, what do we mean by ‘interfaith dialogue’?

    i suggest there is a good example in Act 17, where Paul in Athens, distressed by false religion, expounds Creation and then Christ and the Resurrection and coming Judgment, and tells his hearers ‘The times of ignorance, God overlooked, but He now calls all men everywhere to repent.’

    • dannybhoy

      Where have you been?

      • Working, celebrating, facebooking, suffering a nasty cold, and watching Milo videos. I tend to do things in fits and starts. All the best.

  • LodeHere

    The characteristic of the devil is that in order to get you to believe him, he tells a lot of stories and tales that sound beautiful, some of which are even partially true. But once he has gained your trust he’ll throw in the poison he wanted you to take in from the beginning. Like hiding lethal venom in a sweetie.

    Such is the denial that Jesus Christ is the Son of God; it’s poison for the soul. For if Jesus Christ did not die on the cross and resurrect from death, Christianity is a false belief. And that is exactly what Satan wants everyone to believe.

  • carl jacobs

    Why don’t you read the Koran in a worship service? How about “Because a worship service isn’t about YOU and your desire for inter-faith understanding.” It’s about God and proclaiming God’s truth. Which doesn’t include a reading from the Koran.

    • Pubcrawler

      Yes. Well distilled.

  • LodeHere

    And yet we are requested to pray for those who don’t believe in Jesus Christ’s divinity, that we may recognize the Christ in ourselves, and also in them.
    That He may recognize Himself in us, and have His joy in us, and thus our joy be complete.

  • This chap is now wallowing in self pity and appears to be relishing all the attention. Happy Jack has asked him the following question:

    16/01/2017 at 16:25

    Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Why not just express sincere regret that you mistakenly permitted the Divinity of Christ to be denied during this Eucharist service?

    Jack looks forward to a reply.

    • carl jacobs

      One presumes you are not holding your breath in anticipation of an answer.

      • Rather, Jack is holding his breath to see if his question passes moderation. If it doesn’t, then he will have his answer.

        • chefofsinners

          Your previous question received an answer which was no answer. Most revealing.

          • It seems my question is being ignored. It hasn’t been answered or answered , nor has it been deleted. The “man” is a wimp.

  • Pubcrawler
    • carl jacobs

      There is a curious aspect to this story however. Why won’t it go away? We here care about theological issues. But there aren’t that many of us. And there are many people who call themselves Christians who:

      1. Don’t believe Jesus was divine.
      2. Don’t believe He was born of a virgin.
      3. Don’t believe He is the only way to God.
      4. Don’t accept the exclusive truth of the Christian faith.

      In short, they should have no real problem with what happened. And you see that attitude in the Liberal defenses of the Provost. So then if orthodox Christians don’t matter and Liberals don’t care, why won’t this story go away?

      Perhaps because the great secular mass doesn’t care much about what was said but cares very much about who said it – or more specifically about what was represented by who said it. The secular citizen may not believe the Christian faith but he knows it is central to European civilization. And he knows Islam had no part in it. Perhaps he feels the loss of cultural confidence that attends this display – the collision of resurgent Islam and declining Europe.

      This isn’t about doctrine. If a Hindu law student had read a Hindu text, this story would have no purchase. This is about Islam.

    • Anton

      It should not go away until Holdsworth ceases to be Provost.

      This issue will judge the Scottish Episcopal Church, not vice-versa.

  • carl jacobs

    Gavin Ashenden discusses this subject on Anglican Unscripted

  • npbinni

    What a horrendous attack on the deity of the Lord Jesus Christ permitted in a so-called Protestant church. Is any any wonder Bible-believing Christians view mainline churches as apostate? Surely there is great need for another reformation.

  • chefofsinners

    Glasgow cathedral has just released the full preaching programme for the new year. Highlights include:
    Marine Le Pen reads Mein Kampf on holocaust Memorial Day.
    Salman Rushdie is commended as a missionary to Mecca.
    Her majesty the Queen reads Fifty Shades of Grey to a class of primary school children.
    The Dean stars as McMurphy in a production of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest.

  • Peter Montaigu

    What baffles me most is that the leaders of the Christian faith pronounce that the Islamic faith is just another path to God, or “window into God” as the term used above. I have a problem accepting this concept of there being two routes to the same destination. Let me explain in simple terms..

    2000 years ago, God endeavors to save man, by sending his Son to bring salvation. Jesus comes along and indeed reaches and redeems many…..but not all. Many choose not to follow the word of Jesus, as they reject Jesus as being the Son of God and part of the trinity.

    Then, we are asked to believe that 600 years after Jesus, God decides to make one final effort and gives his message to Mohammed, a fairly old man living in a cave in Saudi Arabia, who goes on to deny the divinity of Jesus and proclaim Islam as the one true faith.

    We are being asked to believe that God, in the form of his Son, Jesus, couldn’t reach all people, so God decides to send his message via a mere man – Mohammed. The idea just defies logic and common sense. That would mean that the Son of God has failed and so a man is sent to fix it, right? What has Jesus to say on this point, who is by this time resurrected and living in Heaven?

    What makes a lot more sense to me is that Christianity and Islam are indeed 2 routes but to different destinations. The two ideas cannot Coexist. If you accept Jesus being the Son of God, then clearly Mohammed was a false Prophet because he denies Jesus as the Son of God.

  • Martin

    It seems now that our correspondent has been required to vacate his office for this post. Such can only bring shame on the Queen and those who sought his removal.

  • Lucius

    Western European Protestantism, and particularly the Anglican Church, is spiritually hollow. There is simply no zeal for Christianity within this sect in this part of the globe. The old Christian spirit has been replaced with a hazy form of secular relativism that abhors any type of conflict by teaching that there is no real right, no real wrong, and no real differences between the world’s religious faithful. This is a formula for collapse and quickly thereafter, conquest.

  • Gordon Calmeyer

    How does the Christian Vhurch try to have relationships with the Islamic believe when it is not true, nothing about it is true, we do not worship the same God the alah of Islam is made up by Mohammed and his dreams, come on you guys read the Bible and just follow the truth, we do not need any one except Jesus not Mohammed or the saints or Mary we honor and respect them but we believe in sola scriptura, and sola Christus – no Koran and no Alah – we respect all people and their faith but we were commanded by Christ to go into all the world and preach the gospel and make disciples of all men, not friends but disciple of Christ