Thabiti Anyabwile, pastor of Anacostia River Church in Southeast Washington, D.C., discusses here on John Piper's web site if Muslim terrorists can be considered truly Muslim.
Your mainstream, or moderate, or everyday Muslim is not a jihadist. He or she is not a terrorist. For those folks Islam is, indeed, a religion of peace. Many of them will often understand the texts on jihad and por-tions of the Hadif in very different ways than what we have come to call radical Islam.
The problem, of course, is the radical Muslim is making his or her case from those religious texts. In that sense, we cannot claim Islam to be a religion of peace. We cannot argue or accept the argument that a guy wielding a sword, beheading a non-combatant in a situation which is not war is just, that it is peaceful, that it is good. It is not.
To the extent that Muslims can make their argument for such things from the Koran, and from the Hadif, and from their own history, then we have to reject the notion that Islam on those terms is a religion of peace.