Anti Apostasy

Apr 12th, 2007, in IM Posts, by

An anti apostasy group in Bandung pays a visit to a church.

Dozens of members of the Anti Apostasy Division (Divisi Anti Pemurtadan (DAP)) of the Forum Ulama Umat Indonesia visited a Christian church (Gereja Kristen Pasundan (GKP)) on Kebon Jati road in Bandung on 4th April to enquire whether the church had broken its agreement not to convert Muslims to Christianity.

Suryana of the DAP said the church had agreed two years ago not to approach Muslims and this agreement had been signed by pastor Krisna from GKP and Muhammad Mu'min from another anti-apostasy group, the AGAP (Aliansi Gerakan Antipemurtadan).

Gereja Kristen Pasundan (GKP)
Gereja Kristen Pasundan (GKP).

However Suryana said the church had violated the agreement by converting some Muslims in the Garut and Pangauban areas of Bandung. Each convert was given five million rupiah ($550) by the church, he said.

Pastor Krisna was not at the church when the DAP men arrived and a later meeting date has been agreed upon by both the church and the DAP at the West Bandung police station. tempo


37 Comments on “Anti Apostasy”

  1. avatar Rockstar says:

    The question is:
    “Why did they have to come in dozens”?

  2. avatar Aluang anak Bayang says:

    Bandung? Chances they are Sundanese. More prone to violent and anti-chinese. How un-javanese!

  3. avatar Odinius says:

    Oh my god! They arranged a meeting! What will they think of next? 🙂

  4. avatar Sputjam says:

    The more Muslim religionist abandon the koran, the more silly they seem to potray. Embrace the deen of God. Islam is not a religion but a system. God’s system. Some called it a way of life.
    No worshipping rituals in islam because there are none specified in the koran.
    No zakat and no pilgrimage.
    and No priest in God’s deen.
    Freedom of faith is enshrined.
    All worship rituals, pilgrimage, zakat (tithes or religious taxes) priest hood/imams were created to enrich the religious elites and to entrench them in power.

    Jesus, Moses, Abraham and Mohamed were Muslims (submitters) who dare not trangressed God’s commandments. And ritual worship is not part of the commandments.

    God’s commandments is for those who believe to focus on doing good deeds and lead a righteous life. It is that simple.

    Pagan Arabs never did believe in Mohamed’s messages. They have conned the masses and created a religion out of God’s deen. For people who described as monotheist (believe in One God) they have built the largest pagan worship centre in the world in Mecca. If you cannot see that mecca is a mega pagan centre, then you are indeed blind, deaf and dumb as God described in the koran.

    The term allahuakbar was never mentioned in the koran. The five daily worship rituals are flawed and in some instances go against koranic principles. Don’t waste your time and effort on something that is not required. Satan has made these rituals pleasant to the masses.

    Be observant and do not be among those who are lost.

    And if the javanese are sincere, they should allow provinces who have no desire to be part of Indonesia to be free and independent. Javanese are nothing but a third rate colonial power.

  5. avatar Abdul Khalid al Jumhuri says:

    Folks,

    I am amused by the quality of the news and the level of knowledge of the reporter. I am even more amused that TEMPO still so generously keeping and paying such an incompetent reporter.

    I will for sure never hire this TEMPO’s reporter (Rana Akbari Fitriawan) as a journalist. This Einstein is such a genius that does not even know that Gereja Kristen Pasundan is a protestant denomination. There is no such thing as “misa” or mass in the protestant churches. They have “services” or “kebaktian”. Look at the pasted copy of the original news below.

    “Sampai Kamis sore, Pendeta Krisna belum bisa dikonfirmasi. Namun salah seorang pendeta di GKP Bandung, Aam, mengakui kedua pihak sepakat bertemu di Mapolres Bandung Barat setelah berunding dengan pihak kepolisian. Meski demikian ia menyatakan ketidaktahuannya, apa yang disampaikan DAP saat mendatangi gereja di Kebon Jati. “Saya sedang memimpin misa sore itu,” kata Aam.

    TEMPO is not only a weekly magazine, it is also a charity foundation for the dumbs. Only idiots would believe that this news is worth reading. Too many bad things happen in Indonesia (and in many other countries) because of bad, irresponsible, and downright “hateful” news. Before long, you will hear that a Buddhist, Hindu, Christian, Catholic, or an Atheist burning the holy al-Qur’an, serve pork to Muslims, or molesting an innocent Muslimah. The result would be AMOK, people get hurt or killed, a town burned to ashes, a lot of people were unemployed.

    Folks, can we be just a little smarter, PLEAAAAAAASE!?

  6. avatar Arema says:

    Dear folks,

    Very interesting posts you have there…

    Sputjam: with all due respect, I humbly ask you to clarify your statement. Your definition of Muslim is those who surrender/submit to God. You’re saying that Jesus is a Muslim. But why His teaching is different from those found in Islam? Islam believe that there is only one God. Can the same God teaches contradicting things to different persons? Analogously, can the same math teacher teaches 1+1=2 to one student and 1+1=3 to another (except he’s drunk, of course)?

    Abdul Khalid: I am aware that you’re a very intelligent person, from some of your posts in this forum. But insulting that a reporter is not qualified just because of one misused term, which actually bear no significance to the report itself, shows your arrogance. We have to be aware that a person could not know everything in this world. If someone asked you to spell the longest city name in the world you’d probably make mistake too right? Please be objective and tolerant. Don’t make a flame out of nothing.

    If I had offended you in any way, please accept my apology. I just want an honest answer. Thank you and God Bless you all

  7. avatar Suhada says:

    Assalamualaikum.. It is so sad to hear such an action. Anti apostasy movement is a contradiction in terms.

    Anti apostasy? Before we got into further discussion it is better for us to really get the meaning of the term.

    Apostasy is an abstract and absurd matter. How can we exactly define the term? Does conversion to another faith fall into the category of apostasy?

    As Muslims we praise those who convert to Islam as Mualaf. Furthermore we labeled the non-Muslim as infidels. Don’t we ever think that the same principle can be used in the opposite manner? Our Christian cousins often times call themselves as “the heir of kingdom of heaven” or “the victorious ones”. And they would call the other as “the lost sheep” or even “anti-Christ”.
    Herein the term “apostasy” looses its significance within the vast realm of relative subjectivity. Thus it only serves as a stigma given by particular group to the others outside them. It only serves as a divisive term which brings nothing but hatred and ill feelings.

    Don’t get me wrong. I do believe apostasy deserves its significant meaning. But not within the psyche of those self proclaimed warrior of Allah or those triumvalistic crusaders.

    Apostasy is an action to defy the sovereignity of God. God has given us a certain kind of divine conscience. We might see that the value and the norm may vary from one culture to another. But if we are honest we can see that we do share the same common universal value and virtue. We commit apostasy when our deed is contrary to that divine conscience.

    But it doesn’t mean that all of the faiths is just the same. It is inevitable that faiths have their own peculiarity. There are, indeed, certain norms and values that differ from one faith to another. There are some of them that even contradict one to another. That’s why we have to be responsible to our faith.

    Faith is a very private domain. It is about our deepest relationship with our creator. I think it lies deeper than mere superficial dogmas, doctrines or religious practices and attributes. It is about experiencing the greatness and the compassion of God within our life. Then, just then, we are willing to subdue ourself to the religious practices of our faith.

    Dogmas, doctrines, ceremonies and attributes are mere expression of faith. Not the faith itself. They have their flaws. They have their inadequacy. They are not meant to be perfect. They are meant to the ways to express our faith, they are meant to be the media to show our God’s sovereignity within our life.

    Yes they are mere expression. But it doesn’t mean that we should take them for granted. If we are faithful, then we will try to do our best to uphold them.

    We commit apostasy when we do things contrary to the divine conscience given to us.

    Furthermore we commit apostasy when we take our dogmas, doctrines, ceremonies and attributes irresponsibly.

    When you are a Muslim and you commit adultery then you have commited apostasy, since you have violate the divine conscience. When you are Christian and you don’t take your communion service by heart then you commit apostasy, since you have take your religious practice irresponsibly.

    Then, we can say that converting to another faith is not apostasy? Nope! Unfortunately this is a rather complicated matter.

    It is not apostasy when we are “experiencing” God through another faith then we convert into that certain faith. If a Christian convert to Islam because he or she “experiencing” God within Islam faith then he or she is a true Mualaf.

    It is apostasy if the motives behind the conversion is mere earthly and trivial matters. Many of us convert to another faith due to rather low passions or ambitions. Some non-Muslim statesmen convert to Islam expecting a promotion or a better carrier. Some non-Muslim convert to Islam just to get married with the ones they love. Then they commit apostasy.

    Furthermore convertion is not just about saying the Syahadat or being baptized. It is about the heart and the soul. So it is rather difficult to verify whether someone commited apostasy. But one thing for sure.. Those bewildered anti-apostasy movement, indeed, commit apostasy.. Just like I’ve said before the term itself contains inevitable contradiction.

    Allah is great. He needs no defending to keep His sovereignity. Ours is just to subdue and humble ourself before Him. Not to play hero for Him. It done nothing more than insults Him. Allhuakbar!! Wassalam.

  8. avatar Suhada says:

    Assalamualaikum.. My dear brother Arema, may I quote the words of Mahatma Gandhi for you. The wise man said: “Religion is like a big, big tree. It rooted from the very same God. But it has many leaves and branches. Differ from on to another. Not compatible from one to another. But can one say that the branches and the leaves sprut from differen trees?”
    Traditionally Muslims believe that The Holy Qur’An is given by The Great Allah. It is a divine revelation. It is the only and the ultimate source of divine truth a person can address to. Yet Rasullulah himself pay a great respect to other faiths. Especially to those monotheistic faith. Evenmore to Abramistic faiths (Islam, Christian, Jew). Islam is a very radical monotheistic religion in a very sense. But it still gives room to inclusive relation among faiths. It still pay a great respect to other faiths. Rasullulah himself said that he admires Isa Al-Masih. He even said that the ones who walk within his (Isa Al-Masih) teaching will have their own divine rewards (pahala).
    Muslim in a literal sense is truly a person who submit him/herself to God will. I think every religious person can be called as a Muslim. Not necessarily convert to Islam.
    Isa Al-Masih himself is not a Christian. He is a Jew. He is a Jewish Rabbi. In some sense, both Rasullulah and Isa Al-Masih share some common things. They were both men of faith. They were both show themselves as inclusive leaders. And their thoughts were the avant-garde to their contemporaries.
    Within Christian theology The Holy Bible is viewed in a different manner to The Holy Qur’An. It is not viewed as the revelation of God. It is said to be written by human inspired by the wisdom of God. The true word of God in Christian faith is within Isa Al-Masih. Thus Christian cannot strictly and sternly said that their doctrines are God’s words in a literal sense. They would like to call their teaching as the way human comprehend the great God. It even give a much more spacious place for being tolerant and inclusive.
    To conclude that different teachings from different faith indicates that they can’t be flowing from the same supreme God is rather, or even very lame. God is Great! The Holy Qur’An might be indeed the revelation of God but it doesn’t mean it gives us comprehensive clues to really understand God. It might be enough, it might be sufficient, but not comprehensive. God is much much greater. The same principle applies other scriptures. Be it The Holy Bible, Vedas, etc. Vice versa, we can’t either say that all of those teaching really came from the same God. We can’t be so sure.
    What can we be sure of is that God is Great. His compassion knows no limit. He is just. Then we, since we are faithful to Him, must do our best to submit to Him. Being a Muslim (not necessarily become Islam.) Then might be.. just might be.. there will be no more bunch of ridiculous anti apostasy movements. Insyaallah.. Wassalam.

  9. avatar Abdul Khalid al Jumhuri says:

    Dear Arema,
    I was lamenting the absolute absence of responsible reporting. What if because of the innacturate news different churches (who did nothing wrong) were targeted, the Catholic churches, or the Orthodox for example? Haven’t we seen it all along in Indonesia?

    I am comparing the possible effects and damage of the publication of such a news (possible AMOK, fight, or other violence) and the efforts that should have been extended to make the news accurate and responsible. By other words, I expect that reporters be more accurate, and do their homework before publishing any news.

    In the TEMPO case, the extended efforts is=0, and the possible effects is massive. Any reporter who cannot see such a clear responsibility I will always call him/ her the “great Einstein”, otherwise known as idiot. They may not like it, but they should not publish garbage either.

    Please don’t feel bad to call me arrogant. You can call me anything and I will not be offended.

  10. avatar Robert says:

    Why would a church pay Rp.5 Million to convert a person? It seems an awful lot of money, which could have been spent better.
    When the DAP visited the church, did they bring the two converts with them? Or is it just a loose allegation? Where is the proof?

    Rockstar,

    “Why did they have to come in dozens”?

    Just for intimidation purposes, to put some pressure on the kettle. Probably it’s their standard operating procedure, they always come in a group.

  11. avatar Abdul Khalid al Jumhuri says:

    I am doing the math and trying to make sense out of this. If it is true, smart people will flock the church and try to fleeze the IDR5.5 million from it and tell them that they have converted. Who the heck now what they belive in heart, correct?

    They could pocket the money, and then back to their old beliefs: Moslem, Buddist, Hindu, or anymism. Again, how do we know if someone really convert? Could somebody make me smart on this please?

  12. avatar Brajaeka says:

    It’s true that some nasrani people would like to convert some islam person to take their religion by giving them some money, did not anybody know about pengkristen, it was in soeharto era that was a clash between Christian general with moslem general within Indonesian armed forces, remember some Pangdam was Christian and replace with moslem when soeharto was given message after he visited ka’bah.

  13. avatar Arema says:

    Dear brothers,

    I am amazed that I got the reply so quickly. I am thankful for your replies.

    Abdul Khalid, I’m sorry to call you arrogant, you’re not. But you gave that impression in that post, maybe out of frustration, and I can well understand that. I sincerely agree with your points that publicity of such sensitive topics should be done by a person with an objective mind who has done his homework (enough research, enough data collecting, etc). Without that, it could spark an “unnecessary flame”, and casualties. But again, the example you’ve brought up about the word “misa/mass” and “kebaktian/service” is not quite a representative example of your argument, and that’s why I got all the wrong idea. The word may be different, but to me they’re essentially the same, and may be used interchangably. There are times when we should be strict and say “no!”, but there are times when we can be lenient and say “I’m ok with all of them, it doesn’t matter that much”. I believe your example belongs to the latter.

    Suhada, thank you for your reply. I am joyous to see that Indonesia still have Muslims that think like you. If every Muslim think like you, Indonesia will be one superpower country by now, because what hindering us to be there now is our own internal SARA conflict.

    As a Christian, I may not agree to all of your theological point of view (as well as you may not agree to mine), but that doesn’t mean we can’t be friends or fellow countrymen. Most people in Indonesia failed to realize this. We Indonesians used to be proud of our great tolerance toward others, our gotong royong culture, but all those things seems to have faded recently, shrouded by SARA conflicts. How I wish the people really know why Bhinneka Tunggal Ika is gripped tightly by national symbol, the Garuda. Because only after the people realize that different races, etc is something beautiful, make our life colorful, and can be combined to form a unique blend of people, each with their specific strengths, Garuda (Indonesia) will not soar in the skies.

    Back to topic, I agree with your point that anti-apostasy is something ridiculous. One could not force another to have a certain faith. It is foolish to think that physical enforcement can force someone’s faith. If you see such an act (DAP, terrorism) that defaming the name of Islam, but done by your fellow Muslim, how should you react?

  14. avatar Robert says:

    Abdul Khalid al Jumhuri,

    You are right. Suppose these two guys did get money. How does the church know they are really converted? I think for Rp.5 Million you will find people who will convert to any religion or cult, they will worship the easterbunny or the Loch Ness monster as long as they get their money.

    Maybe money works for elections and those kind of things, but not for matters of the heart. It sounds like the figment of someone’s imagination, like it has been fabricated. Therefore the whole story of conversion-for-money seems far fetched, and not realistic.

  15. avatar Arema says:

    I have no idea what the real situation is, but ideally, the church would give that money to support needy church member(s), as an act of kindness and nothing else.

    In a non-ideal case, realistically, needy people will make use of this situation to simply grab the money. But it shows how weak their faith is. Extreme poverty has caused some Indonesians to take any means necessary to get something to eat. I’m deeply saddened by this.

    EDIT: …Garuda (Indonesia) will soar in the skies.

  16. avatar Aluang anak Bayang says:

    I think it has more to do with the prosetylizing accusation rather than apostasy issue, as apostasy had been commonplace. A worker in my factory used to be a Christian. He converted to Islam when he married his wife, and the couple had been Muslim for over a decade. Now he is back to Christian, but this time taking his wife along. I don’t think he faced any emcumbrance. I will ask him when I see him next.

  17. avatar Colson says:

    Religion? Boring subject.

  18. avatar Niamh Piperman says:

    Suryana of the DAP said the church had agreed two years ago not to approach Muslims and this agreement had been signed by pastor Krisna from GKP and Muhammad Mu’min from another anti-apostasy group, the AGAP (Aliansi Gerakan Antipemurtadan).

    So the church had to sign an agreement not to approach Muslims. Did the local mosque also sign an agreement not to approach Christians? Just one more example of the Dhimmis culture in Indonesia – minorities forced to kowtow to Islam. Why are so many Muslims so insecure?

  19. avatar Odinius says:

    Suhada: great posts! This I especially agree with:

    Allah is great. He needs no defending to keep His sovereignity.

    This applies to all religions.

  20. avatar Rockstar says:

    But hey why did they need to come in dozens?

  21. avatar Bas says:

    Come on Misa and kebaktian are basically the same thing. Not a big deal except for protestant extremists who, in my humble opinion, are not less stupid than islamic ones in this country (well I am exagerating a little bit).

    5 milions to convert? Wah.. Do they accept Catholics? I am interested!

  22. avatar Saipul says:

    Do these Muslims actually think they can get away with lying like this? 5.5 million rupiah to convert? I was a member of a Gereja Kristen Jawa church, and during my time there the membership grew from 500 to nearly 1,000. No one was ever paid a rupiah. Heck, we only had a weekly offering of about 4 million rupiah.

    Christianity has grown from 1% of the Indonesian population in the first census to 9-11% today (9% from Depag, 11% from the Foreign Ministry). And guess what? It’s not because people are being paid.

  23. avatar Arema says:

    Bas: I’m curious why you had the impression that protestant “extremist” is stupid. Do you mind to elaborate? Thanks, and God Bless you.

  24. avatar Julita says:

    Suhada, I read two of your very long posting, all comforting, sound sweet, peaceful like and the yeast became vague.
    I wonder whether you know the TRUTH in what you were posting, which is very important. You have to read the proper source, think and post. For the Holy Qur’an, I perceive it as if it came down from heaven on angel’s wing, no human writing it? Also if you don’t know the truth about other people’s religion just don’t discuss about it, or see what they themselves say in their holy books post..
    If you say Jesus Christ is not a Christian sounds to me like Fidel Castro and Mao Tse Tung are not communist, Mohammed is not a Moslem? Meaning a leader and not believing in what they lead or teach? Oh, I really have to see it from your point of view.
    Explanation, clarification about the Holy Qur’an is in urgent need to it’s followers all over the world, the mistake which is going on now, why? You will be a fanous person if you can overcome this misconception, one can be holy and be a Moslem. They are killing each other, because they do not know what they are doing. M. Khafi did lots of posting and he is doing a good job.
    Yesterday, I watched a documentary of Islam in Indonesia. I didn’t see those sweet little girls with their curly hair, with a bow or hair pin running freely. In the heat they had to wear the head cover. To me God love art and beauty too, He creates them for us, have you seen the sunset and sunrise? He must be really disappointed to see those cute little girls covered up with man made materials.
    About the Bali bombing, one of the leaders said:” We cannot blame them, you see”, because they said that if America could do that we can do that too. Come on, don’t kill the Australian if you don’t like what the American do.
    This has been always my question in East Europe as well as Middle East, do tell me. If a country is united and strong, nobody asking for help, could a foreign country just go and invade?

    You can say what you want for the following, but don’t we have to learn from others? I think it is because they have more confident or you will say this is apostacy?.

    Catholic church collects money for mosque
    16 March 2007
    Cologne, Germany (dpa) – When the Rev. Franz Meurer stands at the altar this Sunday in his priestly vestments, he’ll say to the congregation: “Today’s collection is for the construction of the big new mosque in Ehrenfeld.”

    “It’s only natural that we’re helping them,” he said of the Muslims living in a city that is one of the main centres of Catholicism in Germany.

    After the special collection was announced last Sunday, several parishioners asked if it was really necessary – considering, for instance, that four young Turks beat a family man into a coma on the Thursday before Ash Wednesday.
    “” “” “” “” –
    About 350 euros (462 dollars) winds up in the collection bag on normal Sundays. This time, though, more than 1,000 euros has been collected in advance. DITIB officials said the amount of the gift was unimportant.

    “It’s simply a nice gesture by Mr Meurer,” said Rafet Ozturk, DITIB’s coordinator for interreligious dialogue. “We’re pleased, of course. Even very pleased.”

  25. avatar Janma says:

    Julita, I happen to agree with Suhada about Jesus not being a Christian. Jesus was a Jew and he preached a new way which his followers then developed into the Christian religion. He was not a Christian because there was no such thing in his times.
    Mohammed however became a Muslim and the religion had form before he left this world, Islam means surrender and he surrendered to the one God and gave many of the names and trappings to his new religion before he left.

    God however is not a Muslim, not a Christian and not relgious. It’s just God. Already complete. Relgion is for humans.

  26. avatar Arema says:

    Janma: I agree with you. Jesus is not a Christian. A Christian is defined as a follower of Christ (Jesus), so why would He follow Himself?

    There is no such thing called Christianity at that time, true, because Jesus had not been born yet!

    But actually the Torah (Jewish “holy bible”, also part of Christian’s Old testament) plus the prophets like Isaiah, etc have prophesized the arrival of Jesus. Combined, there are 40+ prophecies from several prophets which so far only fulfilled by Jesus. Jesus are described as the Saviour of mankind, but in the end He died tragically on the cross. To the Jew, Jesus is a disgrace, because there is no way a saviour is “so powerless and helpless”, despite the numerous miracles He had shown them. The Jew dreamt about a Saviour that will bring the Jews to greatness, something like Alexander the great or Genghis Khan, maybe. So they refused Jesus, and still waiting for that promised Saviour to come….

  27. avatar Julita says:

    A Christian is a person who believes in Jesus Christ and who follows his teachings.
    Gr. Christos translates Hb. Masi-ah “anointed one” by this name Christians confessed their belief that Jesus was the Messiah.
    Christ is one of the names of Jesus, meaning the anointed one, the messiah.

    Mark 8:27-29, Matthew 16.13-19, Luke 9:13-19
    “Who do the crowds say I am?” “¦”¦”¦”¦”¦”¦..”What about you?” He asked them. “Who do you say I am”? Peter answered, ‘You are God’s Messiah (Christ).”

    While Jesus was still on earth, living with them, the Apostles already believe in Jesus, in His teaching, in fact His Mother the Virgin Mary is the first Christian. Do you mean that they believe in Jesus only after Jesus died, get themselves organize and name themselves Christians, how did this word Christian originated from Jesus Christ, no? So my opinion, I am not talking about history, it is about a believe, Faith which existed before they put a label on it..

  28. avatar Ihaknt says:

    Can all these be just a legend or myth that has grown into a mammoth magnitude? Can religions actually be useless? Just an excuse to justify actions, sinful acts, murders, wrong doings, etc? Can it be because people like that sense of belonging to a group, hence create a sense of identity? Could it be possible that His scripts or holy books were created by someone who happened to be at the right place and time who also possesed the charms to persuade others to believe in them?

  29. avatar Janma says:

    Ihaknt asks above what is religion really about…. I’m inclined to think that fear has a lot to do with religion. it really began in far mists of time as people trying to have influence over things beyond their control, like weather, crop failure and death.
    It hasn’t really come very far since then. Fear is a powerful motivator.

  30. avatar Ihaknt says:

    Yes I agree with you. It’s very unfortunate that people use fear (or should i say misuse). I read somewhere, don’t remember what the book is called, my friend is reading it at the moment (iI’ll try get the name tomorrow).There’s a quote in there that says something along the lines of “there’s an invisible man who watches us, our every moves, what a busy being he must be! And he has 10 things that he doesnt want you to do, and if you do any of it there’s a place with raging fires that awaits you. But he loves you!!” Funny, loves us but also wants to burn us…sounds a bit like a marriage huh! Hehe 😀

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