by Master Elijah Muhammad


      I have learned to be humorous with people to gain friendship. If you’re going to be stern
and tell them about the pitchfork that Satan’s going to throw them in the fire with, you’ll only
get blank faces, but tomorrow morning you’ll wake up and say, “Oh, I don’t believe that.” No,
we don’t want to fool you. We’re going to talk about some fire, but it’s not the kind of fire
that disappears overnight. It’s the kind of fire that lingers around and you feel it.

     We were never taught to read the Holy Qur’an by the white man. We never were taught
that there was a universal religion besides his that was called Islam. He never did talk about
any other religion, but Christianity. If God made Adam and He waited until Adam’s children
got about 2,000 years old, then He sends the teachings – the right religion, I’d say God put
Himself in a very ugly position. The people could charge Him and say, “Why did you leave us
without a religion all that time?” You’d say these things. Was it two thousand years after
Adam before He sent Jesus with the right religion? Just think over that. What kind of God
was He? It is said that this one is the best one, and if you believe in Jesus and Christianity,
then you will go to heaven. What about all those people before Jesus was born, where did
they go? Just think over these things. What kind of God was that Who created the heavens
and the earth, then would not create for man a good religion until He give birth to Jesus?
Just think over this.

      I don’t expect for you to just think and reason over it. Would God be so evil that He
would let us live here all that time before He would make us a good religion and a good man.
You say Enoch was a good man. What religion did Enoch have? You say Moses was a good
man. What kind of religion did Moses have? Just think it over for yourself. Moses was so good
that He sent him into Egypt to bring out Israel from bondage from the house of Pharaoh. Well
then, what religion did he preach to them? He didn’t go by no religion. The prophets said
that he brought Israel out of Egypt by the hand of a prophet, but what kind of religion did he
carry there? They said Pharaoh didn’t have no religion; he worshipped cows and what not.
What did Moses worship and what kind of religion did Moses teach Israel? Have you ever
thought of this? We still had to wait 2,000 more years for Jesus to be born. Did Jesus have a
religion? Answer to yourself. If he had a religion, what was it? He said that he didn’t come to
change the law of the prophets, but to fulfill them. What was the law of the prophets?

     We need to know where we’re going; where we’re headed. Since the white man has risen
up among us and claimed that he has the right religion, I want to know Mr. devil, who do you
think you’re fooling while blinding the peoples’ eyes to the knowledge of the religion of the
prophets? I love to get after this devil. He tells us to believe and follow Jesus, but how
about Moses? He don’t teach you to follow Moses, he said Jesus. What did God give to Job or
Moses? Was Moses’ religion different from Jesus’? No, you say; well, was it? Tell us the name
of these two great prophets’ religion. What about Moses’ people, did they go to hell? Talk
back to the devil and you will find that he will run from you. Face him with truth.

     The God that taught me calls him the skunk of the planet Earth…. Don’t be afraid. I’ve
been here 40 years teaching this. He is so wicked and so filthy that God calls him the skunk
of the planet earth. Look at what he’s doing. Look at him going nude. This just fits him – a
skunk. Taking your wives and daughters and stripping them, then parading them up and down
the street. All of your knowledge spent trying to make and model a nice respectable
daughter, and he goes out there and makes her disrespectable, pulling off her clothes,
showing her shame up and down in the public. The Holy Qur’an says, “He pulls off their
clothes and shows the nation their shame.” Believe it or not, but you can walk out the door
and see. They’re out there doing that, or maybe she may come in your own house, you don’t

have to walk anywhere. Just look what he did to your daughters, your wives. He made them
pull off their clothes and made them to like it. I’m only telling you the truth.

       What does a preacher, Baptist, Methodist, or Catholic, look like preaching to you
decency and there sit his daughter with nearly all of her clothes off. Just think over it. Any
of you preachers following the white man in pulling your wife and daughter’s clothes off in
public need to go back and ask God, “I think you made a mistake if you sent me.” You say
that God sent me, but I say, go back and tell Him that He made a mistake.
No minister of any religion will allow another people to pull his wife and daughters
clothes off and make them walk in the public nude almost. You would never be able to
convert me, no, because you should first do like the preacher in the jungle of Africa and
Australia and other far off Pacific Islands: preach to the savage to hide his nakedness. This is
the first preaching we give to a savage – to cover your nakedness. You’re here in what is
called civilization, think over it, civilization. You say that you are a civilized man and got
your daughter and your wife walking out there in the street half nude. Is this not what we
see in Africa, in certain spots. Yes, I’ve been there. I have traveled a little in Africa myself
and also in Asia. I’m not telling you something wrong. I’m telling you what I know and if
you’ve been there you will bear me witness, that you saw the same. It’s ugly looking.

     Wives sitting down under a shade tree with her body near nude with her baby nursing
from it as though this is the right civilization. We’ve got to civilize people. We got to go to
Africa. We don’t consider Africa’s people of the jungles anything for us to follow or be taught
by. If you’re not civilized, you can’t lead a civilized person! Talk back if you are ignorant. I’ve
been around a little myself and I know what you have. I’m not guessing, I know from actually
seeing. If you tell me to go to Africa, I will go there, but don’t tell me to go there to be
civilized. I’m already civilized and I’m ready to civilize Africa. Some of us rise up boasting of
Africa. I say, first get civilized and go there and civilize Africa. Then we all are together in
civilization. As you see the drawing at the head [on top] of our paper Muhammad Speaks, he
speaks too. We love African people like we love you in a way. Not quite as much, because
they’ve been free and they let England, Germany and other European people go over there
and rob them, push them back in the jungle and take over their country. I dare us to get a
country. They certainly won’t push us over and out of it. I’m only perking you up on just
simple things. We love Africa, that’s why we have our hands joined on the upper part of our
paper. This is just what we want to do with Africa. We want to make Africa our brother, but
Africa cannot lead us until they themselves have become perfectly civilized. What God has
taught me is a perfect civilizing teaching. It is not something that you could add to make it
civilized – it’s perfect civilizing teaching to civilize any savage – regardless to where he comes

      I have been visited by many Africans, many of them right here in my home in Chicago.
They come to me. They are happy to meet me and I’m happy to meet them. There are many
fine scholars and scientists in Africa, but in all of their knowledge that they have, it is not
from the right source, the white man has taught them. They have some of their ancient
teachings, but now it must be replaced for the new wisdom, knowledge and understanding
that is brought forth to liberate the black man all over the earth and that knowledge is here
with me. I am not saying this to criticize anyone. I want to join hands with you and be your
brother, but not with what England, the Dutch and these other slave making rascals gave you.
They gave you their knowledge to enslave you like they did us here in America and Africa.


[Excerpt from Theology of Time lecture series]