This case remains a legal issue and not a religious or a political one.
I would agree, to a point. It is a legal issue. However, it is a legal issue about religion. Specifically, it is about a person changing his/her religion. Let’s assume that the Sudanese government is right and Meriam was born to two Muslim parents (something I have a hard time believing). It is still wrong to sentence her to death for changing her religion. Therefore, it is a religious issue.
It is also a political issue. The fact that Sudan allows a death penalty for changing one’s religion is a humanitarian issue. Countries that are appalled by this are standing against the government of Sudan. That is what makes it a political issue.
It is unwise and dangerous to politicize the issue at hand to spur religious tension between the two peaceful faiths with similar foundations.
First, the reason the issue is politicized is because the whole case is so egregious. It is not unwise to stand up for human dignity. It may be dangerous, but sometimes doing the right thing is dangerous.
Second, since when is Sudan peaceful? There continues to be incredible violence in Sudan. There is violence between Africans and Arabs in Darfur. The government is consistently raiding churches, confiscating Bibles, and bull dozing churches. The government also engages in indiscriminate bombings that human rights observers say “amount to ethnic cleansing” of Christians. So where is this peace that is being disrupted?
Notably, It is important to emphasize that freedom of choice is the cornerstone of both Islam and Christianity.
This whole statement is wrong. Yes, freedom of choice is inherent in Christianity.
The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.'” Genesis 3:2-3 (allowing for the choice to obey or disobey)
Brothers and sisters, if someone is caught in a sin, you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently. But watch yourselves, or you also may be tempted. Carry each other’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ. If anyone thinks they are something when they are not, they deceive themselves. Each one should test their own actions. Then they can take pride in themselves alone, without comparing themselves to someone else, for each one should carry their own load. Nevertheless, the one who receives instruction in the word should share all good things with their instructor.
Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. Whoever sows to please their flesh, from the flesh will reap destruction; whoever sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life. Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers. Galatians 6:1-10
This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life. Deuteronomy 30:19
However, it is not the cornerstone of Islam.
Indeed, the penalty for those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger and strive upon earth [to cause] corruption is none but that they be killed or crucified or that their hands and feet be cut off from opposite sides or that they be exiled from the land. That is for them a disgrace in this world; and for them in the Hereafter is a great punishment. Quran 5:33 (“wage war” is considered verbal as well as physical)
So when you meet those who disbelieve [in battle], strike [their] necks until, when you have inflicted slaughter upon them, then secure their bonds, and either [confer] favor afterwards or ransom [them] until the war lays down its burdens. That [is the command]. And if Allah had willed, He could have taken vengeance upon them [Himself], but [He ordered armed struggle] to test some of you by means of others. And those who are killed in the cause of Allah – never will He waste their deeds. Quran 47:4
Fight those who do not believe in Allah. Quran 9:29
“Apostasy (irtidād, ridda) is the abandonment of Islam either by a declared desertion of Islam in favour of another religion or a clandestine rejection of Islam, often combined with the secret practice of another religion. From the first/seventh century to the present day, Muslim jurists have agreed that the punishment for apostasy from Islam is death,” ~ Encyclopedia of Islam (underline added)
Lastly, freedom of choice is most definitely not the cornerstone of the government of Sudan, as outlined in their Criminal Code of 1991, which makes apostasy (changing one’s religion from Islam to another religion) punishable by death. Unless, your freedom is to choose Islam or death, there is no freedom of choice.
For Meriam Yahia Ibrahim, she has no freedom to marry who she wants, no freedom to choose a religion other than Islam, and, as of right now, has no freedom at all.
To read full rebuttal, go to http://followldm.blogspot.com