Two years ago on June 29, 2014, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, leader of ISIS, declared that he was the head of the Caliphate. A Caliphate is an Islamic state led by a religious and political leader called a Caliph. The Caliph is considered a successor to Muhammad, and he rules with absolute power and authority over the entire Muslim world.
Most Muslims certainly do not recognize Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi as the Caliph or consider themselves are part of the ISIS created Caliphate. However the rise of modern-day Islamic terrorism can be directly traced to the fall of a previous Caliphate.
From the beginning of the 14th Century the Ottoman Empire, under a Caliphate in Turkey, ruled a major part of three continents from their headquarters in Constantinople (Istanbul). They ruled for 500 years until the Caliphate began to collapse after the First World War ended in 1917. In 1924, the Caliphate, which was the seat of authority that had united Muslim controlled areas, was abolished and Ataturk was unanimously elected President of a secular Republic in Turkey. The Islamic stronghold had collapsed.
Four years later in 1928, Egyptian Hasan al-Banna, in response to the recent collapse of the Muslim Caliphate, called for establishment of a world Islamic state governed by Qur’anic law and ruled by a single Caliph (or leader). Meeting with his brother and four friends they swore to live and die for Islam and the Muslim Brotherhood, the first modern radical group was born. According to the remarks of their leaders, the Caliphate is to be expanded to cover the entire globe, erasing national boundaries under the flag of Islam.
Hassan al-Banna stated, “It is the nature of Islam to dominate, not to be dominated, to impose its law on all nations and to extend its power to the entire planet.” This belief has not changed. The Muslim Brotherhood can be found in over 80 countries around the world and is the root of many Muslim organizations today.
Their creed states, “God is our purpose, the Prophet our leader, the Quran our constitution, jihad our way and dying for Allah our supreme objective.”
Another Muslim Brotherhood member, Sayyid Qutb wrote a book called “Milestones” in 1964 that is widely used by radicals today. He called for the revival of Islam and said Muslims are obliged to do two things:
- Wage jihad in defense of Islamic lands.
- Wage offensive jihad in order to liberate the world from the slavery to man-made law and governments.
The Muslim Brotherhood has always relied on a gradual approach to establishing a Caliphate, but its ideology and ultimate goal of world domination is the same as groups like al-Qaeda and ISIS.
The teachings of Islam do not allow itself to coexist with other religions or political ideologies. Pray that both Muslims and non-Muslims will awaken to this reality and challenge this doctrine of supremacy within Islam.