April 16, 2003, Hour 3 (last two-thirds, 12:00 onward) "Islamic Sects" (Todd Wilken, Interviewer)(link to wma version)
(17:31) Myself, I am Turkish, twenty generations back Muslim, you know I'm the first Christian - I converted to Jesus Christ as Lord, Savior, and God, you know, when I was a senior in high school.
- If Caner converted on November 4, 1982, as he has said a number of times, he was in the first half of his junior year.
- The word "ulima" is a plural noun, not a singular noun.
- Obviously, if Caner was only a toddler when he came to America, he is using the term "we" to simply refer to his family in general. However, on other occasions he has said that his family came to build mosques. Building mosques is not quite the same thing as engaging in da`wah (the Arabic term for calling folks to Islam).
- If Caner came to America when he was a toddler, how would he even remember whether he saw a Nation of Islam member before then? This is one of those kinds of statements that is probably true (there are not a lot of Swedish Nation of Islam folks) but might still give someone a very wrong impression (much like saying, "I've never had such tasty Swedish meatballs before" when it is your first time trying the dish).
- If Caner converted on November 4, 1982, he was barely (by less than a week) 16. If he converted earlier than that, as his book Unveiling Islam, suggests, he was even younger.
- The statement about this being "only something that we learned in America" is almost certainly true (it's hard to imagine a toddler learning any significant amount) but also tends to give an impression that is wrong.
- If Caner came to America as a toddler, it is hard to imagine that he heard the gospel in a particularly meaningful way before then.
- There seem to be other places in Caner's speeches where he claims that everything he knew about Christianity was what he learned in his mosque. Was it that way, or was it this way, where he heard the gospel via Lutheran (or some similar) radio?
(10:27) Anyone reading the Koran, and I encourage Christians - to reach my people, you must read the Koran - you must, you know, get to see what the Koran is about. Anybody, reading the Koran, will run across an amazing number of allusions to Scripture. But they are not correct allusions to Scripture, they are - things are charged. For instance, Abrahim at the top of Mount Moriah (Abraham) sacrifices his son in the Koran - he sacrifices Ishma'il.
- Actually, the Koran does not name the son (link to English translations of the passage).
- 15-16 is not really "late teens" is it?
- He may have thought that, as Muslims do teach that - but not because of what the Koran says.
- Does anyone have a recording of this supposed debate? What was the name of the Imam?
- Incidentally, that is a good question to ask your Muslim friends. I have asked a similar question before, and received not much of an answer back.
- But Barak is not one of the 25 prophets of Islam (link to discussion - text may need to be highlighted to be read in some browsers)
- And, of course, Christians believe David, Deborah, and Noah to be prophets.
- I have seen no evidence, aside from Caner's claims, that his father was one of the ulima.
- Ulima is a plural noun, not a singular noun.
- There's no evidence that Caner reads Arabic any better than the 80% that he seems to write off in his comment.
- What is interesting about this clip is that here Caner seems to know the right word - jinn, as opposed to other places where he makes the serious error of referring to the jinn as the injeel (Gospel). He also seems to understand the concepts correctly, though perhaps a Muslim reader would disagree with me.
- What Caner probably means is "mujihad" (singular) or "mujahideen" (plural). While there may be a word "jihadeen" it would not appear to fit in Caner's sentence.
(2:25) We didn't know - of course, you know, I was raised Muslim and then we came to this country - We didn't know that it was oppressive. You know, we never thought, "Oh, I'm being oppressed," this is all we ever knew, was the wearing of the chador or the wearing of the niqab, or - of course - the most germane one is the burkah. But this was all we ever knew.
- The statement that he was raised as a Muslim and then came to America suggests to the average person something different than that he came to America as a toddler.
- Likewise "this was all we ever knew" tends to suggest more than the first 2-3 years of a person's life experience.
- Let's grant that Sweden, which is really a democracy, can count as socialism. Socialism isn't really a form of government - so the grouping is bad - but whatever.
- When did Caner supposedly live under fascism? Is he making a joke at the late Jerry Fallwell's expense? That doesn't seem to fit the context. It looks like he is claiming to have lived under a fascist regime in Turkey.
- When did Caner live under "of course" Islamic sharia law? Turkey does not have sharia law (even if he supposedly lived there). So, how is this claim to "of course" have lived under sharia law anything resembling the truth?
- Notice that in this context, Caner's oft-repeated claim that his father had "many wives" is specifically linked to polygamous practices.
- No, Islam does not claim that Mohamed's fortieth birthday was the date of the first revelation. He was - they claim - forty years old at the time, but it was not on his birthday.
- "Madrass" is not the singular form of "Madrasses." Instead, Madrasah is the singular form with Madrassas as a Latinized plural (Madaris is the real plural).
- "Jihadeen" is not the right word. The right would would be "mujahideen" as noted above.
- Caner's presentation does not say that his mother was a Muslim woman reached for Christ by a Christian woman, but it certainly gives the listener that impression.
(13:09) Let's just use a comparison here. I happen to be a baptist, I was saved Black Baptist, a national baptist, I am now Southern Baptist. Presbyterians and I worship differently, but I believe Presbyterians are going to heaven. They believe in Jesus Christ and so do I. In Islam it is different. In Islam, Sunni declare that Shia are Gulat - Cult. In every mosque I lived in, before I came to America, the mosque was defined by whether it was Shia or Sunni or Suffi - Suffi the third, it's a minor sect. And so, they do not believe that - Sunni do not believe that Shia are going to be in paradise, and Shia do not believe that Sunnit are going to be in paradise - at least the theologians don't.
- Jerry Tackett, who allegedly led Dr. Caner to Christ was a white guy. Of course, there could be a white guy in a black church.
- I have seen no evidence that Steltzer Road Baptist church was actually in the National Baptist conference.
- The statement about "every mosque I lived in, before I came to America" implies that Caner lived in more than one mosque before coming to America. Leaving aside the issue of people living in mosques, is there any evidence that Caner was in more than one mosque before coming to America?
(29:22) Interviewer: 1) The escalating violence in Iraq. As a former Muslim and as a former resident of that area of the country - of the world - how do you see that escalating violence? Caner: I see it as the natural progression. I mean, this is something that - we were just asked about this in Washington, DC, and I said, "if I was a betting man, I'm not, but if I was a betting man I would guess that there will be even more, after we made the initial exchange of power."
- Notice that the interviewer is under the impression that Caner was a resident of the Middle East, and that Caner does not do anything to say, "Well, I was born in Sweden, and raised in Ohio ..." or anything of that kind.
- Notice Caner's claims to be involved in radical Islam. He not only claims that he was trained to convert by the sword, but even that he was raised in the way of al-Qaeda leader, al-Zawahiri.
- I didn't notice any particular items worthy of note in this one. I also included the link here to be fair to Caner. I'm not trying to pick on only select interviews, sermons, and lectures.
(2:16) Interviewer: If you had five minutes, alone with President Bush, to talk about Islam, what would you say to him, Dr. Caner? Caner: I would tell him that this is not political - I think that's the biggest mistake we can make, is to assume that this is a political issue. This is theological, for Muslims. This is eschatological. This is their desire. This is what we were trained from birth - that this is the holy war. And I think that the President has to be aware that this constant advice that he's receiving that this is just a political thing is just - it underestimates our enemy. It underestimates those who want to do us serious harm. I think the second thing I would tell him is that they are not terrorists, they are devout. In thirteen hundred years of history - thirteen hundred - I would ask him, "Can you name one period of time where Islam has coexisted peacefully in any country?" The answer, of course, is "no."
- Notice the claim that Caner was trained "from birth" (understandable hyperbole) for holy war. Are we really to believe that Caner was trained to do what Muslim terrorists do?
- That's interesting, because it appears that the Sunni Muslims who don't permit non-Muslims in Mecca do permit Shi'ite Muslims there. Also, Caner's own "Islamic Foundation" appears to have held events of some kind that were also attended by the Shi'ite family of Jamal Jivanjee (in fact, the families apparently even had dinner together).
- There does not appear to be any evidence that Ergun was in any way planning to strap himself to a bomb.
(42:57) There are contradictions. Of course, any man-made book will have contradictions. And so there are any number of contradictions in the Qur'an that seem to fight against each other. Surah 19 is one of them, where it talks about the birth of Mary, I mean the birth of Jesus in Mary, and it makes some amazing claims. They come from the Gospel of Barnabas, which was a book that came centuries after our Lord and the other gospels. And in those teachings they teach some things that even Muslims cannot espouse.
- Caner notes that there seems to be a relationship between the "Gospel of Barnabas" and the Koran. The relationship, however, appears to be the reverse of what Caner has stated. It's generally thought that the Gospel of Barnabas was written around the 14th century. It is a fairly obvious forgery (see the discussion at this link, for example), written - to all appearances - by a Muslim forger of European extraction (the work uses lines and thought gleaned from Dante Alegheri's Divine Comedy).
(03:24) I have on-going debates with Muslims who are from different sub-sects of Islam, and they will say, "we have never done this," or "we don't face this direction," or "our Ramadan is only thirty days" etc. And I quickly add that - you know - that Sunni Islam is, as you said, it's like - it's as divided as Christianity is, in that they have four major schools - if you will - sects. But from those four major schools, there are myriad of different denominations, if you will.
- What debates? Can Dr. Caner document the debates that were on-going in August of 2009?
- The issue of Ramadan being thirty days is not really a "sub-sect" issue. Ramadan is either 29 or 30 days long (since it is a lunar month, it can go either way).
- That's not exactly the same as saying "I was born in Istanbul," but it does suggest to the listener that Caner is from that city, which Caner is not (as far as we can tell).
- I suppose that Caner means misbaha, which is one name for Muslim prayer beads.
- "Masallah" sounds like the Turkish word for "congratulations" or "cheers".
- I had previously speculated that Dr. Caner got his wrong idea that Ramadan is 40 days long from conflation with Romanism. This quotation doesn't prove that, but it does suggest that it may be the reason.