Published On: Thu, Mar 24th, 2011

To Obey God Or The Leader?

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Religious extremism now poses a huge threat to America. Many children and others have died because of strange beliefs and creeds.

It was one of that reality-based series which taught me the annoying fact of Jehovahs Witnesses who do not allow blood transfusions.

I remember how I shocked that day. After a serious crash, a man was dying on a hospital bed and doctors were watching him hand tied.

This was painful to watch as well as impossible to understand. And I asked myself, “ for what reason is that and why?”

New York Times best-selling author, Frank Schaeffer answers my questions. He points out the fact that there have been at least 50 convictions in the United States since 1982 in cases where medical treatment was withheld from a child for “religious reasons.”

Among many fundamentalists, Pentecostals, evangelicals, Roman Catholics, Jehovah’s Witnesses and other religious conservatives, as well as Christian Scientist, it is usual for parents to ignore science and medical care for their children.

Schaeffer describes the ignorant fundamentalists who choose prayer over medical treatment. And he questions whether should parents have right to follow their religion and withhold medical attention from their children or not.

Schaeffer audaciously displays his concerns about the abuses of religions.

What I found strange is that, he groundlessly touches upon “Muslim religious rituals” when he mention American couples who had been convicted of murdering their children.

I actually don’t know any Islamic fundamental teaching that would withhold medical care.

Muslims receive illness and death with patience and prayers. They consider an illness atonement for their sins. They consider death as part of a journey to meet their Lord. However, they are “strongly encouraged” to seek treatment.

Qur’an says,

“…We ordained for the Children of Israel that if any one slew a person – unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land – it would be as if he slew the whole people. And if anyone saved a life, it would be as if he saved the life of the whole people.…”

Mohammed says “your body has right on you: seek treatment, for every illness God created, he created a treatment for”.

So, it is obligatory for every Muslim to seek treatment for life threatening or non-life threatening illnesses.

And it is also parents obligation to seek examination and treatment for their children.

About the rest (other religions), the problem is not religion itself. The problem is irresponsible religious leaders who create a culture which views seeking medical health as rejecting God.

Then here is the question;

Is to obey the leader, to obey God?

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