The latest illustration of how indiscriminate ecumenicalism is the devil's work, and Pope Francis is his advocate:
Pope Francis says Islam and Christianity both share the "idea of conquest," but appears to reject a link between [Islamic Fundamental]ism in Europe and Islam itself, reports say.
A difference which makes no difference, IS no difference, as Spock once said. As to the first slur, more on that below.
In the wide-ranging interview with the French Catholic newspaper La Croix, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church didn't shy shy away from challenging the church to engage with Islam, celebrating Sadiq Khan's election as London's mayor, Christianity Today reports. [emphasis added]
"Engage with Islam"? There's only one way to for a Christian to "engage" with Islam: Preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ to them. Because that's what Christ commanded us to do in the Great Commission.
But I get the distinct impression from his Unholiness's remarks that that isn't what he means by "engagement".
"Today, I don't think that there is a fear of Islam as such but of ISIS and its war of conquest, which is partly drawn from Islam," the Pope said, Religion News Service reports.
At least Francis conceded that much. But the truth is that ISIS is Islam. It embodies, exemplifies, and carries out what the Qu'ran teaches: the very conquest that he clearly doesn't understand, judging by the following:
"It is true that the idea of conquest is inherent in the soul of Islam. However, it is also possible to interpret the objective in Matthew's Gospel, where Jesus sends His disciples to all nations, in terms of the same idea of conquest."
No, that "interpretation" is not possible. Here is the Great Commission Francis smears:
But the eleven disciples proceeded to Galilee, to the mountain which Jesus had designated. When they saw Him, they worshiped Him; but some were doubtful. And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on Earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
Did Jesus "conquer" His disciples? Did He force them to follow Him? No. He even stopped Peter from defending Him with a sword when Judas Iscariot and the cohort of Roman soldiers came for Him in the Garden of Gesthemane. He was, and is, the Prince of Peace. That's what He commissioned His disciples, and all those who would follow, to do: spread His message of salvation from sin and eternal life through His sacrifice to a world that, obviously, would largely reject it. So much so that ten of those original eleven disciples, and later Paul as well, were martyred. They didn't "conquer" anybody; but they did spread the Gospel throughout the ancient world, and it has "gone global" over the past twenty centuries. Because it is in His Word that the true power lies.
Then there is the Qu'ran.
There can be no "engaging" that. There are only two rational responses: (1) Christian witness, and (2) armed self-defense. Because however harmless Francis wants us to believe that Mayor Khan is, his bloodless takeover of the Magna Carta's capital city for the enemy will lead, inevitably, to the carrying out of those Qu'ranic passages. It's only a matter of time.
But, credit where credit is due, Francis does appear to have a better grasp of Middle East foreign policy than Barack Obama does, if only accidentally:
The Pope added that "in the face of Islamic terrorism, it would therefore be better to question ourselves about the way an overly Western model of democracy has been exported to countries such as Iraq, where a strong government previously existed. Or in Libya, where a tribal structure exists. We cannot advance without taking these cultures into account."
"We used to have one Gaddafi, now we have fifty," he added, the Guardian reports. [emphasis added]
Sometimes a stopped clock really is right twice a day - or once, anyway.