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Cults and World Religions

Black Muslims

A word needs to be said about the Black Muslim groups, the Nation of Islam and the Moorish Science Temple of America. Both of these groups are, effectively, radical Black groups of America and are not recognized by true Sunnis as members of the Islamic religion.

The Nation of Islam is, by far, the larger of the two groups. Depending upon whose statistics are used, the Nation of Islam has a membership of 200,000. History shows, however, that the roots of the Nation of Islam flow from the Moorish Science Temple of America.189 At the death of the founder of the Moorish Science Temple, two groups fought for control. One of these groups was led by Wallace D. Fard (or Farad) in Detroit. Fard changed his last name to Muhammad and claimed to have made the pilgrimage to Mecca. Using the Bible, the Qur’an, and his own books, Fard taught that eventually Asians (non-Whites) and Whites would fight it out in the battle of Armageddon.

Fard left the Nation after being arrested in 1933, and was succeeded by Elijah Muhammad (Elijah Poole, 1898–1975). Elijah Muhammad also wrote and helped to structure the Nation of Islam in its current form. The official history of the Nation of Islam includes the following description of the origin of Muhammad’s ministry:

For 3 ½ years He taught and trained the Honorable Elijah Muhammad night and day into the profound Secret Wisdom of the Reality of God, which included the hidden knowledge of the original people who were the first founders of civilization of our Planet and who had a full knowledge of the Universal Order of Things from the beginning of Divine Creation. Upon the Master’s departure in 1934, the Honorable Elijah Muhammad labored tirelessly to bring life to his mentally and spiritually dead people until his return to the Master in 1975. The Honorable Elijah Muhammad identified the Master as being the answer to the one that the world had been expecting for the past 2,000 years under the names Messiah, the second coming of Jesus, the Christ, Jehovah, God, and the Son of Man. When the Honorable Elijah Muhammad asked Him to identify Himself He replied that He was the Mahdi. He signed His name in 1933 as Master Wallace Fard Muhammad to express the meaning of One Who had come in the Early Morning Dawn of the New Millennium to lay the base for a New World Order of Peace and Righteousness on the foundation of Truth and Justice; to put down tyrants and to change the world into a Heaven on Earth. 190

Muhammad’s prize pupil and speaker for the Nation was Malcolm X (Malcolm Little, 1929–1965). Malcolm X withdrew from the Nation and its membership declined from a high of about 300,000. The assassination of Malcolm X occurred after he had left the Nation of Islam and changed his name once again. Upon the death of Elijah Mohammad, Muhammad’s son took over leadership of the Nation. The new leader changed the theology of the Nation away from the racist positions of Fard to an almost conservative Islamic position. To maintain the relationship with the past, the teachings of Elijah Mohammad were called metaphorical.

In 1977 a group led by Louis Farrakhan broke away and began to return to the preaching of Elijah Muhammad. Consider the following description of Farrakhan as given by Hanegraaff:

Farrakhan is a charismatic speaker who has appeared on television numerous times, is a sought-after speaker by African-American university student groups, and publishes his beliefs and opinions in The Final Call. He is also well known for his hatred of whites and Jews, and was accused by Malcolm X’s widow of involvement in the assassination of her late husband. In 1984 he denounced Judaism as “a gutter religion” and referred to Adolf Hitler as a “wickedly great man.” In 1993 he tried to sell the public a softer image of himself by reaching out to politically mainstream and “progressive” African-Americans and being involved in a national summit of black political leaders, including many from the Black Congressional Caucus. He even had dinner with a rabbi.

Despite his attempts to reach out, he agreed with the “truths” spoken by his then spokesman, Khallid Abdul Muhammad, at Kean College, New Jersey, on November 29, 1993. In the speech, Muhammad called the Pope a “cracker” and referred to Jews as “bloodsuckers” who are in a conspiracy to control the finances of the world. They even control the presidency of the United States regardless of who is in office. Farrakhan followed up Muhammad’s speech with rhetoric of his own condemning whites and Jews. Despite all this, a 1994 poll showed that 63 percent of African-Americans believe Farrakhan speaks the truth, and a New York Times survey reports that over one-third of African-Americans polled “express a favorable view” of him. The most recent publicity event, the “Million Man March” on Washington D.C., although it did not draw the number of participants anticipated, did demonstrate Farrakhan’s ability to convince many Christian leaders (especially African-American leaders) that he is a peace-loving man who is no more prejudiced or intolerant than any Christian.

This kind of rhetoric is consistent with the historical beliefs of the Nation. They believe in a sort of Platonic idealism or quasi-pantheistic dualism that teaches that all members of the Nation are God, but that Allah is incarnate only in Wallace Fard Muhammad, who is also the Mahdi and the Messiah. Not only that, but God was at one time a scientist who wanted to create a single language on the earth, but was unable to do so. After failing in doing this, he decided to destroy the earth, only succeeding in causing the moon to separate from the earth 66 trillion years ago. This is something clearly condemned by the Qur’an, which in innumerable places teaches that God is One. But like orthodox Islam, they reject the Christian concept of God as a Spirit, or to use their word, a “spook.”

However, if “all Black Muslims are Allah, and Allah is incarnate as Wallace Fard Muhammad” is their doctrine, why have Asians—especially blacks (according to them)—made mistakes like anyone else? Is Allah “All-knowing” or not? If Black Muslims are Allah, how could they be deceived by the devil? If Allah can be deceived, why trust him? Why trust the writings of Wallace Fard Muhammad, Elijah Muhammad, Louis Farrakhan, the Qur’an, or the Bible, when they might be full of errors as well? If I am Allah, how can I trust myself? Ultimately we are left with a radical form of agnosticism and skepticism. 191

Christianity is seen as the white man’s religion. Despite his softened outreach, the Nation is still a radical group which promotes the economic and social position of the Black community, as defined by Farrakhan. Farrakhan quotes from both the Qur’an and the Bible, resulting a in theology that is neither. Salvation is still by works, but it is unclear what any other real beliefs are taught.

And, what of the Moorish Science Temple of America? The Temple was founded in Newark, New Jersey, in 1913 by B. Timothy Drew (Noble Drew Ali, 1866–1929). A black North Carolinian, Drew claimed a commission from the king of Morocco to spread Islam in the United States. 192 However, Drew held to a view of Islam that avoided African ancestral teachings. Instead, he taught that all non-whites are Asians. Christianity is the white Europeans’ religion, and Islam is for the Asian, or more specifically, the Moor (Black Asians). Drew reduced his theology to writing in a book called the Qur’an or Koran. This is not the Qur’an of Islam, but is a much smaller book that, upon reading, is a mix of Bible, Qur’an, Eastern mysticism, and big city “street” theology.

Upon Drew’s death, the Temple split between its Chicago and Detroit leaders. 193 The Detroit leader, as we have seen, was Fard, who started the Nation of Islam. The Chicago leader was John Givens El. His followers maintained the teachings of Drew Ali. The Moorish Science Temple of America is also a racist religion which teaches the white man is the devil and that Blacks shall overtake the world.

The Five Pillars of the Moorish Science Temple are:

Both the Nation of Islam and the Moorish Science Temple has strong followings in jails and prisons, although this is not the sole location of their membership.

189. Walter Martin, Kingdom of the Cults, STEP electronic edition, Appendix D. Neither group presents the history in the fashion set forth by Martin.
191. Walter Martin, Kingdom of the Cults, STEP electronic edition, Appendix D.
192. A semi-official WEB site of the Moorish Science Temple states that Drew Ali was raised by Cherokee Indians, became a circus magician, and in that capacity traveled to Egypt where he learned not only the Qur’an, but High Magic and much higher truths. See
193. The aforementioned WEB site says that one off-shot at Drew Ali’s death was that of Elijah Muhammad, who taught a “pseudo-science of race hatred.”




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