GOD HAS RAISED ME IN THE MIDST OF YOU TO INTERPRET FOR YOU
Reprinted from the March 17, 1967 edition of MUHAMMAD SPEAKS NEWSPAPER
By ELIJAH MUHAMMAD, MESSENGER OF ALLAH
The white theologians, or scripture scientists, have so fixed the Bible in their way that the truth is hard to understand — though the truth is here in the Bible . . .
GOD HAS raised me in the midst of you to interpret for you. I do my best to give you the truth without making any changes. I have no knowledge of anything I am teaching — only what Allah, in the person of Master Fard Muhammad, has given me. I want you to take note of the prophecy of the birth of the last one, God Himself. They used to preach that God came in flesh and in the blood. But they do not preach that much now. The Bible says here in Matthew, first chapter, the 21st verse: “And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shall call his name Jesus: for he shall save his people from their sins,” We want you to listen to it carefully and do not misunderstand it. If Jesus was to save his people from sin 2,000 years ago, where are they?
I WANT YOU to remember these things. These are the scriptures you boast are accurate. And if you know that it is truth, then you have not understood it; you are misrepresenting it. I want you to listen to something else. If he came and saved the Jews from their sins, we cannot find them. They are not here today. And if it is meant the total race of white people, why are they expecting Judgment? If they said that he was sent to the house of Israel seeking to save the lost sheep of the House of Israel, some of us misunderstand it. They think that is referring to the whole race of white people of Israel. They misunderstand it. They fail to catch the trick there of the theologian.
SAVE THE LOST sheep of the House of Israel. He did not say that Israel was sheep. He said the sheep of the House of Israel. If he had meant Israel being the house of sheep, he would have said to save the sheep of Israel . . . we must look closely into the words and understand what is meant today. If he is a sheep of the house, it means another people who are in the House of Israel, or the race of Israel. They are not the same,but quite different. Therefore, to cover up the aboriginal members of our people here in the West, they symbolize you as sheep. You are not able, until today, to understand that the sheep is you in another nation, in a house where you do not belong. The average clergyman preaches as one who needs to be brought back to the church. Christianity. I want you to change your text, brother. It is not a sheep that is out of the church. It is a sheep that needs to come out of a church. . .
YOU WORSHIP everything that white people worship . . .You now always reject those trying to say anything good about you —- it is not what they have taught you. There are white people in America and abroad who have great respect for Islam, but they are not supposed to teach you Islam. This is against their nature and the oath they have among themselves never to wake up the Negro. I want you to remember the name Israel. Don’t think Israel is a good name. Israel is not a good name. Israel is an evil name. I will make it clear to you. According to your Bible. The Bible said that Jacob was named Israel after he had conquered the angel. The Bible said that he wrestled with the angel all night. Understand what is meant. If this man was wrestling with the angel of God, trying to force the angel to do something the angel did not come to do, he is an enemy of the angel. It says the angel pleaded to Jacob to let him go. Jacob said, “No, no, no ! I cannot let you go until you bless me.”
THE BOOK SAYS he wrestled all night long — and as the day began to break, the angel said “Let me go.” Jacob “No no! Bless me before you go.” He is a enemy. According to history, white people have been at war ever since they had civilization. They never have been able to get along in peace with themselves. It is time. If you do not know the truth today—-good bye. There are some people who are ashamed and fear to accept the truth lest they lose friendship with the enemy of the truth. Whether you accept or reject, you do not have any friendship, because by nature he is against you. By nature, he opposes you if you try to take him to heaven. That is why 6000 years ago, they had to throw him out. And to have peace today, they will have to throw him out of the earth.
THE WORLD is at war now. Who started it ? . . . It was not Islam. It has to be Christianity. Ever since 1942, the world has been restless, with one picking up arms after another—-to bring them to today, the final ending of the war. To do what, Muhammad? To put an end to war making; putting an end to those who delight themselves in making war; to stop them once and forever. . . The people was at peace in the islands of the Pacific and in the mainland of the Far East. They were at peace until the Christians went in with their Bibles and bottles of whiskey—–and with their Marines, and with gunboats to throw shells on the people of the mainland and Islands to force them into subjection. The time is at hand, and I want you to know the truth. God did not raise me up in your midst to bear witness to other than the truth–but to give you the truth that will bring to you salvation for self; to join you onto the nation of righteousness; give you the kingdom of the nations; make you ruler of the people of earth. . . Negro is a slang name given to us by those who love to make us blind, deaf and dumb to the knowledge of self. That word does not mean civilization. He is not of this nor of that. He is like a piece of iron—he is dead and lifeless.
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BY ELIJAH MUHAMMAD, MESSENGER OF ALLAH
Reprinted from the FEBRUARY 21, 1969 edition of MUHAMMAD SPEAKS NEWSPAPER
WE ARE NOT NEGROES, That is, those of us who have awakened into the knowledge of self.
WE ARE BLACK ORIGINAL PEOPLE. THERE IS NO RACE OR NATION which has been called from their BEGINNING. . .NEGROES. This is a slang that the slave-master and his children have given to the American Black Slave after they had been successful in depriving our fathers of the knowledge of self. They made us not a member of the societies of the earth nor of him, because of the lack of knowledge of self and others.
THIS MADE US A SPIRITUALLY BLIND, DEAF AND DUMB PEOPLE. It is PITIFUL even to write it. They used our fathers whom the slave-masters had made helpless by the robbery of the knowledge of ourselves.
ALLAH (GOD), WHO CAME IN THE PERSON OF MASTER FARD MUHAMMAD, To WHOM Praises Are Due Forever, Said to me, that there cannot be a worse robbery than to rob a man of the knowledge of self. This is why it is associated with physical blindness. It is awful, even for one to go and rob a man of his eyes with which he sees the way in going: going forth and coming in. The blind man depends on others to lead him to get around among the people. He cannot see. His eyes have been put out. PITIFUL. AFTER THE WHITE SLAVE-MASTERS put our fathers in this condition, robbed of the knowledge of self, they called them Negroes, meaning something that is mentally dead and in neutral, and cannot go of itself, in such condition.
A NEGRO, BEING MENTALLY DEAD, is not a part of civilization. He is subject to be taken and put into service to anyone who desires him.
IF YOU DO NOT LEAD HIM TO THE WORK, tell him what to do and how to do it, he will stand, sit or lay down and work not. He becomes a servant in the hands of civilization.
HIS MENTAL BLINDNESS is compared with PHYSICAL BLINDNESS. A person who is physically blind has to be lead and guided everywhere he goes or he feels his way with a walking cane, or is led by one who sees where he is going. So it is with the mentally dead Black Man of America.
NEGRO . . . He prides himself in whatever slang names and service made of him by his now mocking slave-master. He does not know his own name. He is proud of being called by a name of his slave-master or whatever the slave-master calls him; he will answer to it. They feel proud to answer to meaning-less and disgraceful names and nicknames that the white man calls him.
IF YOU TRY TO MAKE HIM SEE that he is disgracing himself by answering to nick-names given to him by his master, he will dismiss you and say; “What is in a name? A name does not mean anything.” This is silliness. He makes himself meaningless. Regardless to what he is called he means nothing after all.
THIS IS OUR POOR PEOPLE. BLACK EDUCATORS, Black business men and Black ministers refuse to accept the Honorable and Independent Names of God that would give them respect. He refuses because he loves and worships his master’s name which keeps him a slave to his master.
THE WHITE SLAVE-MASTERS AND THEIR CHILDREN call them Negroes or Nigger after having neutralized them so they are unable to join and become a member of the civilized society of the Nations.
HE CALLS HIMSELF A NEGRO. Let us see what this Negro (nigger) actually means. In log mills there is a large piece of iron that is powered by steam, that turns the logs for sawing boards from it, what we call, the sawyer. The piece of iron is called the ‘nigger’. The sawyer makes the piece of iron (nigger) to turn the log in what-ever way he wants it to be turned. I have worked in saw mills when I was a young man.
THIS PIECE OF IRON (nigger) which is used to turn the heavy log, is neutral. It cannot move of itself.
THE BLACK MAN, so-called Negro, uneducated and deprived of the knowledge of self, was given this name by the white man, meaning that “he is now a neutral man. He is not one of us nor is he able to call himself one of the members of his own people, for he has lost the knowledge of both and he now awaits someone to put him into action toward the “knowledge of self.”
THIS IS THE AMERICAN SO-CALLED NEGRO. SO ALLAH (GOD) TAUGHT ME.
MESSENGER ELIJAH MUHAMMAD MEETS THE PRESS
Reprinted from the February 4, 1972 edition of Muhammad Speaks Newspaper
Chicago, Illinois – (This is Part Two of “Muhammad Speaks'” exclusive presentation of Messenger Muhammad’s (Peace Be Upon Him) January 14, 1972, Press Conference)
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QUESTION: Mr. Muhammad, is it true that you are planning to build a new home for your family. I think right adjacent to your present home?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: It is true those houses are my homes.
QUESTION: The press has evaluated the new homes at a half a million dollars.
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I wish I had gotten off with that cheap price, but it is twice that much that these buildings are costing. All four of the homes cost a million dollars a little over a million dollars; about $2,230,000.
QUESTION: I was referring to a new home for yourself and your wife. Mr. Muhammad, that home, sometimes referred to as a mansion, the cost has been estimated to cost one half million dollars.
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I think they are costing a little more for the house here on the corner.
QUESTION: There are reports that you are in the process of purchasing a large tract of land to build low income houses.
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: We have some information from the authorities that they could supply us with an area now for about a hundred thousand, I do not know exactly. I have not gone into any serious questioning about it.
QUESTION: Federal government or local government?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: Local government, the city.
QUESTION: How soon do you expect those to be built?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I do not know. I have not went into seriously, these offers, but I hope to do so soon because we need them. My greatest desire on the South side is to build homes for the Black Man on the South side in Chicago. Again, my greatest desire is to put him up a hospital, which he sorely needs; he really needs a hospital. Again, the third, I would say, it is an educational center to teach him the knowledge of self. The city has not approached me yet to sell me and my followers these houses. But, they have indirectly indicated this would be easy to do, if I wanted to get them for such purposes.
QUESTION: Do you have a date in mind when you would like to begin construction of these one hundred single family homes?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: We would like to go into that as soon as possible with the proper authorities.
QUESTION: Will you also try similar enterprises in other cities?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: Yes, everywhere we are. This group in Baton Rouge, claiming to be Muslims, is there a known leader?
QUESTION: Do you know how many Muslims have been killed in the last few years, either by police or internal strife? Do you keep such a record?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: We try, but I am not saying how many we have on record, today.
QUESTION: You spoke earlier about police brutality. Were you suggesting that this was some kind of police plot? Or are you sure it was a splinter group?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: Yes, we have been attacked and still are being attacked by the police department and there are some few of my followers who have been killed by the police department.
QUESTION: Do you feel that the police might have been responsible for what happened at Baton Rouge or on the West Coast?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I am not eager to say pro or con on this matter, because I do not have too much knowledge of it. But I do know, according to what has passed, that the police department down there could give you better knowledge than me.
QUESTION: You indicate that the numbers of the Nation are increasing. How do you feel about the fidelity that is coming from the individuals who are joining up with the Nation? Do you feel people are becoming more deeply involved or more deeply a part of the Nation of Islam, or do you think the numbers tend to spread things thin?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I think for the last year or so that we have increased in the registry of our people, with very good people. Their morals are good and they are trying now to increase themselves into better morals. Our natural Black people all over the country are trying to do that.
QUESTION: Have you designated a successor for yourself ?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I do not do that. I cannot do that. I did not choose myself. God chose me and if He wants a successor, He will choose that one.
QUESTION: By what means would someone come up?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I do not know that, because I do not believe there is one coming up. The work that I am doing, I don’t think God needs one, because when man and God have come face to face, as the old saying goes, then that is the end of it. When we are face to face with God, that is the end of it and so what would another one do? There is nothing for him to do.
QUESTION: After you are gone, Mr. Muhammad, the Nation of Islam will continue to exist but how?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: It will be a New Islam to what the old Orthodox Islam is, today. It will be altogether a New One.
QUESTION: You mean your successor will preside over a New Islam?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: There will be no successor. There is no need for a successor when a man has got the Divine truth and has brought you face to face with God.
QUESTION: How will your resources be administered?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: That will be carried on by the Nation. After setting up the Nation on the right way, or right path to take care of themselves, they do not need any more instruction on that. They will follow it as the Constitution of America has been followed.
QUESTION: Will it be run by local Mosques?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: No, No, No. After this, the whole entire Nation of Black people will be governed Divinely and the government will be a Divine government and not something that is governed locally, like we have today. We will have a Divine government set up for us, and it will stand forever. We will not need any change.
QUESTION: What did you mean, “new different from Orthodox?”
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I meant just that. We have a New Islam coming up. The Old Islam was led by white people, white Muslims, but this one will not be. This Islam will be established and led by Black Muslims, only.
QUESTION: Will there be a Saviour’s Day affair as it has been in the Coliseum.
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: We have not made preparations there.
QUESTION: Where will you have it Sir.
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: We hope to have it in the Armory over on 52nd and Cottage.
QUESTION: Will you address the gathering, Mr. Muhammad?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: That depends on the Will of God. If He Pleases, I will be there.
QUESTION: Has that changed your plans, Baton Rouge, has it changed your security arrangements?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: No, because I have One Security and that is God, Himself.
QUESTION: How is your health?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: My health? Well, I do very well, I think, if it Pleases Allah. And, all of the afflictions of the former Messengers, to classify Elijah that is coming just before the Great and Dreadful day of God, he must have a taste of all of it.
QUESTION: Why did you appoint a press conference, today?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: They appointed themselves, and I am willing to go along with them, in that I set up a press conference.
QUESTION: When was the last press conference, do you recall ?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I have not had an actual press conference in quite few years. I think it was in L.A. I had something like questions on certain things, on one thing, about when the Malcolm death took place. That was not, say, really a press conference. We have not had a press conference since quite a few years ago, out in Los Angeles.
QUESTION: Would you tell us the present status of Muhammad Ali (Cassius Clay)?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: Cassius Clay is a good believer. I would say the young man is full of sport and he goes along with sport, too, but I think in his heart he wants to be good.
QUESTION: Will he be returned into full membership in the Nation of Islam?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: There is nothing one would do that cannot be forgiven, if he repents.
QUESTION: Have you set a date for when he comes back into full membership?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: No, he is actually still a good Believer. As far as certain duties or posts as he used to hold, as teaching the Ministry, I do not know when that will take place.
MESSENGER ELIJAH MUHAMMAD MEETS THE PRESS
Reprinted from the January 28, 1972 edition of Muhammad Speaks Newspaper
On Friday, January 14, sixteen Chicago-based journalists representing several local and national newspapers and magazines were received in the home of the Honorable Elijah Muhammad, Messenger of Allah. In this rare hour-and-a-half long group interview, Messenger Muhammad placed no limitations on questions asked. Though granted this rare privilege to talk at length with a man the press usually describes as “inaccessible,” the journalists’ editors have permitted very little of the interview to appear in other news media. Therefore, Muhammad Speaks presents the interview in an EXCLUSIVE SERIES as was recorded by Sister V. Najieb, one of the Messenger’s secretaries.)
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: My reaction is to continue to teach them to not do those things as I have always. I do not believe in carrying weapons. When a man puts weapons in his pockets, or a gun, I will make it clear, it takes his mind off God’s protection and puts it on the gun to protect him. This I have taught my followers ever since God left me: Do not carry weapons, because that is not a protection for the people who manufacture such weapons. They cannot save their own lives with them, today.
QUESTION: What is the reason in your estimation for the violence that has occurred? What do you think is the reason for the violence that has taken place?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: It is just people who are not ready to join up with the righteous and who wish to destroy the righteous and let evil and unrighteousness triumph, if it can.
QUESTION: Is there an effort to take over the Organization?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I do not think our people are that foolish as to think they can take it over. There may be some people that think they can take it over. There may be some people that think, “If such one and such one is out of the way I could get his place.” That may be in the minds of some of the people but I do not believe actually they really believe it themselves (that they are going to take over). Do you think, Sir that it is true? The Mayor of Baton Rouge thought this.
QUESTION: Have you heard anything to the effect that government officials are trying to put pressure on the Black Muslims similar to the pressure that was put on other Black organizations in the past?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: As I said, a minute or so ago. I have been doing this work for forty years. I have known many groups to rise up since that time and carry into practice what you have in mind. But actually our people in L.A. and New York or any other place, here in Chicago, they have been mistreated right along. They go to prison and the federal penitentiary, as they call it (institutions). But, that is all given to us. The trial of the Black Muslims in America must come to pass. We must be tried.
QUESTION: Has police brutality in Chicago increased or decreased?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: No I do not say that it has increased against us. I think it is just about the same as it always has been.
QUESTION: Has anybody brought it to your attention, has any member brought it to your attention, that they are dissatisfied with how that money is used?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I do not pay any attention to any such talk, because most of my followers are satisfied with what happens to the money that is donated for the upkeep of the work that we are doing and wish that they could give more.
QUESTION: The Nation of Islam does have considerable holdings financial assets and there in the South, recently, I forgot whether it was Alabama or Mississippi, there was a lot of “hullabaloo” about not allowing Black Muslims to obtain farmland, due to the number of people trying to cut down on…..
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: We have been living in the world that goes like this “Keep the nigger down.” And we are not out of it yet. And what we are doing today, we are trying to do something for ourselves. Therefore, we go to the farm, where there is the place where everyone, if he wants to be successful, can go back to the earth and get it from the earth. This is where the white man got it from. He has been successful ever since he has been on the Western Hemisphere. He has raised enough food to supply his brother in Europe and even our Brothers in Africa, right here in America.
QUESTION: The group in Baton Rouge that has been identified as Black Muslims, what was their status at the time of the shooting in Baton Rouge?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I do not know, because we did not have them on our register; therefore, we do not know just what was what. We do know this, that they were not on our registry as good Muslims. We could not locate them and if they were on our registry, as good Muslims, we would try to do the best we could to uphold their goodness…. We did not know these people in the beginning. Their names, some of them are foreign to us, altogether.
QUESTION: Do you have a central registry of all through out the country?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: All of them that come to register, we do have.
QUESTION: Can you give us a number of those you have?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: They come so fast. Right at this hour they are trying to get to us now, in the Registry of Islam. We never know how many we have. We believe we have quite a few hundred thousand over the country. And they are coming in faster now than ever.
QUESTION: Authorities in Baton Rouge released a vast itinerary (of the group in Baton Rouge), trying in many reports from various sources saying that this group has come there, asking for support.
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: No, I have not received any report. No, I do not have anything that I can say accurate report that these people came to the Temple there.
QUESTION: (Referring to the shooting of Theodore Bey and Captain Raymond Sharrieff) Why do you think someone would be shooting at Mr. Sharrieff, and why do you think some would be shooting Theodore Bey?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: I do not know what you have in your heart. I do not have that knowledge. Why would they go shoot at the man? What was he doing to them to cause their anger to rise that high to want to kill an innocent man sitting behind the wall in his own office?
QUESTION: What do you mean when you say, “a good Muslim?”
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: A good Muslim is one who observes and obeys the laws of the Religion of Islam, designed by God, Himself.
QUESTION: Does that mean that they are only people, I suppose, people ousted from the religion at times? If someone is found not to obey the laws, they are expelled?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: We have such punishment if we find you not obeying the laws of the religion of Islam as it is taught to me by God, Himself, and that I put the law out before the world and especially before the world and especially before those who believe, to follow and obey, we put you out of the circle and we give such time as from thirty days to six, nine, or twelve months and one to five years and that to seven years. But, we never have had to put a man out or woman out for seven years. But, these are the numbers of times that you are to pay for your disobedience.
QUESTION: If you are expelled or suspended are you listed on the registry? Do you have a list if someone is suspended for a period of seven years for not obeying the laws? Would you still have that person listed on your registry ?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: Yes, we have to keep him on there.
QUESTION: So if the people were members at any time, you would know that.
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: If we consult our register, to find out whether or not any of these people were listed (the name), we will find it. We are still searching. We never stop searching to see if such and such people are not on our register, just in case, say, we punish ourselves. We have a punishment as I just listed to you, for disobedient Muslims and we are always checking our registry for such things that a Muslim may do and cause us trouble.
QUESTION: It appears from your check so far, that none of the people in Baton Rouge are members of your organization?
MESSENGER MUHAMMAD: So, far, we have not found wherein those people that were charged with beginning a shooting riot down there were on our registry. I want to accelerate this “Baton Rouge staff.” We do not consider a Muslim is Muslim, who is running around over the country, trying to start trouble. We do not even consider him.