A Critical Exposition of the Popular 'Jihád'/Chapter 6/35
[Sidenote: 35. In what sense the wars were religious wars.]
In this sense the contest might be called a religious war, as the hostilities were commenced on religious grounds. Because the Koreish persecuted the Moslems, and expelled them for the reason that they had forsaken the religion of their forefathers, i.e., idolatry, and embraced the faith of Islam, the worship of One True God; but it was never a religious war in the sense of attacking the unbelievers aggressively to impose his own religion forcibly on them. How much is Sir W. Muir in the wrong, who says, that fighting was prescribed on religious grounds? "Hostilities," he says, "indeed, were justified by the 'expulsion' of the believers from Mecca. But the main and true issue of the warfare was not disguised to be the victory of Islam. They were to fight 'until the religion became the Lord's alone.'"
- The Life of Mahomet, Vol. III, p. 79.