From Yahoo News/Associated Press: Baghdad church siege ends with 52 dead.
Within Christianity, a martyr is someone who is killed because they are a Christian. These believers were peacefully gathered together for worship. Al-Qaida in Iraq has threatened to “exterminate Iraqi Christians.”
Within Islam, a person who is killed because they are a Muslim would also be considered a martyr. But so is anyone who is involved in the violent struggle to extend Islam–against Israel, against the West, against the Hindus.
Jesus was a man of peace. He did not advocate the violent overthrow of the evil Roman empire, but urged his followers to pay their taxes to Caesar, and to love their enemies. For the next three centuries, Christianity spread from India to Spain by love and proclamation, not by force.
Mohammad was a man of violence—he led battles and raiding parties against his enemies or just for loot—and for the next few hundred years Islam spread from India to Spain by sword and spear.
I know that there have been wars and violence done in the name of Christ, and that there are millions of peaceful Muslims, but…
If a Christian kills in the name of Christ, it is a violation of the character and message of Christ.
If a Moslem kills in Jihad, it is consistent with the character and message of Muhammad.
The cosmological argument will get you to God. Why is there something rather than nothing? But how does one get from there to Christianity? If choosing between Christianity and Islam, look at Jesus and Muhammad.
Grace and Peace