Jesus

THE MUSLIM VIEW OF THE ASCENSION OF JESUS (ALAYHIS SALAM)

By Abu Iman Abd ar-Rahman Robert Squires.

© Muslim Answers

Based on a response to an email message from David Cunningham

All praise be to Almighty God, the Lord of the Universe, and peace be upon His servant and messenger, Muhammad. I bear witness that there is nothing divine or worthy of being worshipped except for Almighty God, and that Muhammad is His servant and messenger. He who God guides no one can lead astray, and he who God leads astray, no one can guide. To continue . . . please let me introduce myself – my name is ‘Abd ar-Rahman Robert Squires. I’m an American Muslim who has been living in Kuwait for just over three years, and I spend a good deal of my time doing Islamic work and writing on comparative religion issues. The questions that you had concerning Surah Maryam, which I believe you submitted via e-mail to the Islamic Presentation Committee in Kuwait, were passed on to me by a colleague. Hopefully I will be able to answer your questions in a satisfactory manner.

First of all, the verses that you quoted in your statement are from Surah Maryam (Chapter 19), verses 30 thru 34. According to Pickthall’s translation, which you said that you were using, these verses read as follows: “He spake: Lo! I am the slave of Allah. He hath given me the Scripture and hath appointed me a Prophet, And hath made me blessed wheresoever I may be, and hath enjoined upon me prayer and almsgiving so long as I remain alive, And (hath made me) dutiful toward her who bore me, and hath not made me arrogant, unblest. Peace on me the day I was born, and the day I die, and the day I shall be raised alive! Such was Jesus, son of Mary: (this is) a statement of the truth concerning which they doubt.” (The Meaning of the Glorious Koran, translated by M. M. Pickthall, Surah 19 – Maryam, Verses 30-34)

I’m certainly no scholar of the Arabic language, but I have checked a few other translations of the Qur’an, and none of then differ from the above translation in any significant way. However, I should point out that there is a difference in the translation which you used in submitting your question. Your translation said: ” . . . and has given me prayer and alms-giving”. However, the correct translation (and the one contained in Pickthall) says: ” . . . and hath enjoined upon me prayer and almsgiving” – the difference being “given” versus “enjoined”. All of my copies of the Pickthall translation read : ” . . . and hath enjoined upon me prayer and almsgiving”, so I’m not quite sure where the translation that you’re using came from. I think this may have caused you some confusion, as I will address below – insha’llah.

Your first question was: “If Jesus is still alive, does Allah still give him prayer and zakat? If he is already in Heaven, there doesn’t seem much point in this.”

According to the beliefs of the Ahl al-Sunnah wa al-Jamaa’ah (i.e. “Orthodox” Sunnis), Jesus, peace be upon him, was raised to heaven alive, and his return to earth will be one of the signs that the Day of Judgment is approaching. These beliefs are not based on whims or guesswork, but are narrated to us through authentic hadeeths (sayings/traditions) of the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him. However, your question above seems to be based on the mis-translation that was included with your submittal. Certainly it is not God that “gives” Jesus prayer and zakat, but it was God who “enjoined” these acts upon Jesus, peace be upon him. As far as what Jesus is now doing up in Heaven, this is a matter of the Unseen known only to Almighty God, and as such, it can only be known through Divine Revelation. I have personally never heard any hadeeths that describe what Jesus, peace be upon him, is doing up in Heaven (not that this necessarily means there aren’t any), but as a Muslim, I am not allowed to guess when it comes to matters of the Unseen. Certainly, one might say that “there doesn’t seem much point in this”, but part of Islam is trusting in the wisdom of Almighty God. I’ll discuss this issue a bit more below, but suffice it to say that if there was any benefit in us knowing what Jesus, peace be upon him, is now doing up in Heaven, Almighty God would have revealed it to His Final Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him.

Before moving on to your other questions, I feel that I should mention that the Bible also contains at least two instances of prophets being taken up to Heaven by God before they died. If you look at the Old Testament, II Kings 2:11-12 tells us: ” . . . and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven. And Elisha saw it, and he cried . . . And he saw him no more . . . “. Also, Genesis 5:24 tells us that Enoch “was taken” by God. That this means up into Heaven is confirmed in the New Testament (Hebrews 11:5), where it says: “By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God translated him . . . that he had pleased God”. It is interesting to note that the reason Enoch did not “see death” was that “he had pleased God”, which directly contradicts the popular Christian myth that all men, including the prophets, were condemned sinners until Jesus, peace be upon him, paid the ransom for their sins. (It is also interesting to note that (St.) Paul, the author of Hebrews, is referring back to Genesis 5:24 when he makes this statement. However, his version of the verse is quite different than Genesis 5:24! It seems that the version of Genesis which he was using back then was rather flawed, since it does not contain anything that really supports his claim. Mistakes like this by the New Testament authors are quite common, since they usually relied upon the Septuagint (i.e. the Greek translation of the Old Testament) instead of the Hebrew Old Testament.) But anyway . . . the main points that should be considered here are two: 1) being taken up into Heaven before death does not imply any sort of “Divinity”, since neither Elijah, Enoch nor Muhammad are considered “Divine”; and 2) even though God may state His reason for doing such a thing, i.e. Enoch pleased Him, or to save Jesus from the Jews, the overall wisdom behind it may still seem strange to us. However, the meaning of Islam is “submission to Almighty God”, and realizing that Almighty God is the most wise is part of our faith – so we know that if knowing something would benefit us, God would have revealed it. By the way, I mentioned Muhammad, peace be upon him, along with Elijah and Enoch above, because he too was taken up to Heaven. However, he was the only one to come back to earth afterwards – which is a unique blessing for him and his followers.

While I am still on this point, I guess that I should say that I there are two other aspects of this that should be looked at: 1) if Muhammad, peace be upon him, was just a false prophet, as many Christian missionaries and non-Muslims allege, why would he have accorded such an honor to Jesus?; and 2) the Muslim view of Jesus, peace be upon him, as a servant and prophet of God, being alive up in Heaven seems to make a lot more sense than the Christian view. As you probably know, the Bible says that Jesus sits “at the right hand of God”, even though he himself is supposed to be an equal member of the Holy Trinity (see Acts 2:33, 7:55-56, Romans 8:34, Colossians 3:1; Hebrews 10:12 and 12:12). Notice that the verses say the right hand of “God”, not “the Father”, which makes it rather difficult to interpret in a Trinitarian way (at least if one wants to remain a monotheist).

Also, for a believer in Pure Monotheism (i.e. a Muslim), what did or did not happen to Jesus, peace be upon him, is of no consequence to their faith – which is in Almighty God alone. Muslims believe what they believe about Jesus (i.e. that he was not crucified and that he was taken up into Heaven) based on Divine Revelation, not human reason. On the other hand, Christians insist on Jesus’ death on the cross because they believe that it needed to occur for their “salvation”. However, if one understands Pure Monotheism (Arabic: Tawheed) properly, what happened to Jesus, peace be upon him, is of no consequence one way or another. Certainly, Almighty God could have allowed him to be killed (just like other prophets were killed), just as He could have explained what happened to him in greater detail, if He so wished. However, He – due to His Wisdom – chose not to. And He is the best disposer of all affairs . . .

One question that rings out is that why would the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, “deny” the crucifixion if he was just a fabricator and opportunist, as the Christians claim. (Audhu bi-Lah!) The crucifixion was an accepted fact among (almost all) Christians and Muhammad, peace be upon him, had no additional knowledge concerning it compared to anyone else at his time (unless, of course, you believe that he was a prophet). Based on the fact that even the Christians try to portray Muhammad, peace be upon him, as a gifted diplomat and manipulator, wouldn’t he have been smarter just to accept the crucifixion? Why offend his Christian audience? He could still preach that Jesus, peace be upon him, was just a man (and not God), even though he was crucified. Neither crucifixion, nor the lack thereof, prove or disprove anything as far a Jesus’ alleged “Divinity”. Also, if Muhammad, peace be upon him, had just accepted the alleged crucifixion, many potential Christian converts could have entered Islam and just “ridden the fence” between Christian and Islamic beliefs – or accepted Islam outright. This would have given Muhammad, peace be upon him, more men in his armies, etc. This is what a “intelligent opportunist” would have done. However, the fact that the Qur’an says that the crucifixion did not take place, forces Christians to make a choice. They must choose between Almighty God or Jesus. There’s “no riding the fence” between the two religions, since the Qur’an clearly states that the crucifixion did not take place. I remember having to make this choice – al-Hamdu li-Lah! Also, why would Muhammad, peace be upon him, attribute all of these great miracles – as well as ascending into Heaven – to Jesus, peace be upon him, if he was just a false prophet and/or “clever opportunist”? Certainly, since he was claiming to be a prophet in the same way Jesus was a prophet, he would certainly be asked to perform miracles similar to the ones Jesus, peace be upon him, did. In spite of what Christian missionaries often say about Muhammad, peace be upon him, he did many miracles, which are documented both in the Qur’an and in the Sunnah. In general, Muslims tend not to focus too much on his miracles, since they were mainly for the people of his time – except for the Qur’an. Additionally, doing miracles is not a necessary proof of prophethood, since even a great prophet like Abraham, peace be upon him, didn’t work miracles in the same way Jesus, peace be upon him, did. You should consider that even the Bible says that false prophets can “work wonders” (Matthew 24:24), so following someone based simply on their ability to do miracles is a bit misguided. Food for thought . . .

You might say, as Christians often do, that Jesus did miracles by his own power, but other prophets did them by the power of God. However, this completely and clearly contradicts numerous verses in the Bible which prove that Jesus did his miracles by God’s power. For example, in Luke 11:20, Jesus says: ” . . . I with the finger of God cast out devils”; and in John 5:30, Jesus says: “I can of my own self do nothing”. Additionally, Mark 6:5-6 tells us that Jesus, peace be upon him, went to a certain village and “he could do no miracle” there. Another good proof of this is what Jesus, peace be upon him, says immediate before raising Lazarus from the dead: ” . . . Father, I thank You that You have heard me. And I know that You always hear me, but because of the people standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent me.” (John 11:41-42). This verse makes it clear that Jesus, peace be upon him, wanted the people to know that it was God that was doing the miracle not Jesus himself.

And finally, I would just like to point out that the hadeeths of the Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, collectively referred to as the “Sunnah”, are based upon Divine Revelation. Even though they are not the verbatim and direct word of God, they were revealed (or “inspired”) by Almighty God to the Prophet, peace be upon him. As such, they are authoritative for all Muslims. There are numerous proofs in the Qur’an for the authority of the Sunnah, but since that is not the topic of this discussion, I will not address it.

Your second question was: “What is Jesus talking about when he says: “the day I die and the day I shall be raised to alive”? It seems that he knew this was going to happen, which he would if he were a prophet. So why do Muslims say that he has not died and been raised alive? These words seem to agree with what Christians think – that Jesus has already died and been raised to life. Doubtless your local Imam will tell you that this refers to when Jesus comes back to Earth to judge people (including Muhammad? – interesting to know what you think about this) but then you have to decide what to do about Question 1. Also, why not accept that the prophecy has already happened, as many people think it has?”

In regards to your first statement above, for what it’s worth, it should be said that I also know that I’m going to die and be raised alive again, but that doesn’t make me a prophet. The belief in death, the resurrection and Final Judgment is common to all of the “Abrahamic Faiths” i.e. Judaism, Christianity and Islam, so one doesn’t need to be a prophet to know such a thing. However, if Almighty God chose to reveal to Jesus certain aspects of the circumstances of his death and resurrection, then that’s fine with me, since Jesus, peace be upon him, was a great prophet. However, the verse which you quote neither confirms nor denies that such information was revealed. Concerning why Muslims believe that he has not died, and that he has been raised alive, it is because the Qur’an (and thus God) says so. However, since the various verses on this issue may have left you somewhat confused, I am including a detailed excerpt from a well known Islamic scholar which discusses many aspects of this in detail. Writing in the 12th Century after Jesus, peace be upon him, Shaikh-ul-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah said: “Almighty God did not state that Christ died, nor that he was killed. He said, rather: “O Jesus, I am gathering you and causing you to ascend to Me, and am cleansing you of those who disbelieve” (Qur’an 3:55).

God spoke similarly in other passages (Qur’an 5:117; 4:155-161). God cursed the Jews for various things. Among them was “their speaking against Mary a tremendous calumny” (Qur’an 4:156), and their claiming that she was a fornicator. They are also condemned for their claim “We slew the Messiah Jesus son of Mary, God’s messenger” (Qur’an 4:157). God said: “They slew him not nor crucified him, hut it appeared so to them” (Qur’an 4:157). God attributes this statement to them and curses them for it. The Christians are not mentioned because the ones who assumed responsibility for crucifying the supposedly crucified person were the Jews. Not a single one of the Christians was a witness [to the event] with them. Rather the apostles kept at a distance through fear, and not one of them witnessed the crucifixion. The only witnesses were the Jews who informed people that they had crucified Christ. Christians and others who handed on the story that Christ had been crucified only passed on what they had received from these Jews who were the chosen minions of the powers of darkness. Nor were they such a great number that prevented their colluding on a lie. God said: “They did not kill him nor did they crucify him, but it seemed so to them.”

Then He said: “There will not be any of the People of the Book but will believe in him before his death” (Qur’an 4:159). Among the majority of scholars it is believed that this means “before the death of Christ”. It may be said to mean “before the death of the Jew,” but this is weak. Similarly it is said to mean “before the death of Muhammad,” but this is even weaker. If one placed faith in him before death, this act of faith would benefit him, for the repentance of a person is accepted which is not after the moment of death.

It might be said that what is meant by this is the faith which is after the moment of death and therefore of no use. After his death, everyone believes in he unknown which he had previously rejected, and so there is nothing special to Christ in this, because God said “before his death,” and did not say “after his death.” This is because there is no difference between someone’s placing faith in Christ and Muhammad. The Jew who dies in his Judaism dies a disbeliever in Christ and Muhammad. Moreover God said: “There will not be any of the People of the Book but will believe in him before his death.” The verb (la-yu’minanna) can only mean the future, and this is an indication that this faith is subsequent to God’s informing mankind of this. Had He meant “before the death of the follower of the Book,” He would have said: “There is no Follower of the Book but who believes (yu’min) in him before his death”.

God also speaks of “the People of the Book,” which is a general term for Jews and Christians, and this indicates that all People of the Book, Jews and Christians, will be believing in Christ before the death of Christ. When he descends, the Jews and Christians will believe that he is the messenger of God — not rejecting him as do the Jews now, nor claiming that he is God as do the Christians. God states that they will put faith in him when he descends to earth. It is stated that he was raised up to God when He said: “I am gathering you and causing you to ascend to Me” (Qur’an 3:55). He will descend to earth before the Day of Resurrection and then he will die. By this God has informed us that they will believe in him before Christ’s death, as He also says elsewhere (Qur’an 43:59-65). In the sound hadith reports from the Prophet he said: It is impending that the son of Mary will descend among you as a just judge, a righteous imam; he will break the cross, kill the pig, and impose the jizya.

In the Qur’an (4:147) God has made it clear that He has raised up Christ alive and saved him from death, and that they will believe in him before he dies. This is confirmed by God’s saying, “and I am purifying you from those who have disbelieved” (Qur’an 3:55); had he died there would have been no difference between him and others.

The word al-tawaffi in Arabic means “completion” and “receiving” and that is of three kinds: a) the completion of sleep; b) the final completion of death; and c) the final completion of soul and body together. It is in this third meaning whereby Christ went out from the state of the people of the earth who have need of food, drink, and clothing, and he departed from them in matters pertaining to natural functions. God brought Christ to this state of completion; he is in the second heaven until the time he descends to earth, and his state is not like the situation of the people of the earth in eating, drinking, dressing, sleep, natural functioning, etc.

For their statement (i.e. the Christians) that by his death is meant the death of his human nature it is necessary that they hold as their basis that by his “completion” is meant the death of his human nature. Whether it is said to refer to his death or to his completion in God, he is nothing other than human nature, for there is nothing other than that which God “brings to Himself” (Qur’an 3:55). This “gathering” is his being raised to God. Their view that what is raised is his divine nature would be contrary to the text of the Qur’an, even if it were a matter of his death. So how can that be the meaning when he is not said to die? They can make what is raised up something other than “received, completed”, and yet the Qur’an states that what is raised up is “received”.

Similarly when in another verse God says: “They certainly did not kill him, but God raised him up to Himself” (Qur’an 5:157-158). He is rejecting the claim of the Jews that “We have killed the Messiah, Jesus the son of Mary, messenger of God”. The Jews did not claim to have killed “Divinity”, nor did they concede that God had a divine nature in Christ. Moreover God did not mention their claims to have killed him from the Christians, so that one could say that their intent was the killing of the human nature without the divine. The claim, however, was from the Jews, who only attested to the human nature in Christ. The Jews had claimed that they killed him, and so God said: “They certainly did not kill him, but God raised him to Himself”. God thereby attested to His raising up that which they claim to have killed, that is, Christ’s human nature. It is obvious, therefore, that God denies that [Christ’s] human nature had been killed. Rather, He is assuming it to Himself. Christians admit the assumption of the human nature, but they claim that it was crucified, rose from the grave either after a day or three days, and then ascended to heaven and sat, human nature and divine, at “the right hand of the Father”.

God said: “They certainly did not kill him”. The meaning is that God denies the killing; He is certain about it, There is no doubt about it, in contrast to those who differed because they were in doubt whether or not he was killed. Those who believed it were not certain about it, since they could produce no proof for it. There was a group of Christians saying that he was not crucified, for those who crucified the crucified man were the Jews, and they had confused Christ with someone else, as the Qur’an indicates. Among the People of the Book also it was held that he was confused with another, and those who wanted to kill him did not know who Christ was, until one of the people said to them “I know him”. Only then did they know him. The view of those who say the meaning of the passage is “They did not kill him knowingly, but rather uncertainly” is weak.

Almighty God said: “O Jesus, I am gathering you and causing you to ascend to Me, and am cleansing you from those who disbelieve” If that which was raised up was the “Divine Nature”, the Lord of the Universe would be saying to Himself and to His word “I am causing you to ascend to Me”. Moreover, God said: “But God raised him up to Himself”, but according to them (i.e. the Christians) Christ is God. It is obvious that His raising Himself to Himself is impossible. If they say that he is the Word, they nevertheless hold that he is the Creator God. They do not make him of the same status as the Torah and the Qur’an, and other speech of God like these about which God spoke “To Him there arises the good word” (Qur’an 35:10). According to them Christ is God the Lord of the universe, the Creator, the Sustainer; so to say that the One-and-only Lord of the universe was raised up to the One-and-only Lord of the universe is ridiculous.

Almighty God the Most High said: “I was a witness of them while I dwelled among them, and when You took me You were the Watcher over them”. This indicates that after his being gathered up to God, Christ was not a watcher over them, but only God without Christ. This statement is also an indication of the Reckoning; if this and statements like it are true, it is known that after his being taken up Christ is not a watcher over his followers. God is the watcher who observes them, counts up their deeds, and requites them accordingly. Christ is not a watcher; he does not observe their actions; neither does he reckon them up, nor does he reward them.”

(All of the above paragraphs were quoted from A Muslim Theologian’s Response to Christianity, edited and translated by Thomas F. Michel, Caravan Books, Delmar, New York, 1984, pages 305-308. This is an English translation of Ibn Taymiyyah’s al-Jawab as-Saheeh.)

Hopefully, this long quotation will answer most of the questions which you have concerning this subject. However, I’m still not sure what to think of your statement that “Doubtless your local Imam will tell you that this refers to when Jesus comes back to Earth to judge people”. Possibly you’re just trying to show that even though this belief is both popular and widespread amongst Muslims, it still may be erroneous? As far as this probably being the belief of most “local Imams”, you’re partly right, as the above quotation from Ibn Taymiyyah indicated. This is because all of the Qur’anic verses and hadeeths that refer to Jesus’ death refer when he returns to earth in the time of the Mahdi. However, your statement that ” . . . when Jesus comes back to Earth to judge people (including Muhammad? – interesting to know what you think about this)”, is not correct. It seems as though you’ve confused Christian beliefs with Muslim beliefs. As the last paragraph of Ibn Taymiyyah’s quotation said, Islam certainly does not teach that Jesus, peace be upon him, will come to judge people – especially Muhammad, peace be upon him. Neither the Qur’an nor the authentic hadeeths record such a thing, and I’d be surprised to hear of a “local Imam” who believed such a thing. I know Christians believe that Jesus will come to judge “both the quick and the dead” on the Last Day, but Muslims certainly don’t. In Islam, the Final Judgment is for Almighty God alone – not for someone who sits at His “right hand”. I think that you might need to check some of your sources, because I don’t know where you got such an idea. On that note, I would just like to say that it is always wise to learn about a religion from those who adhere to it. Unfortunately, when you go into most bookstores in the West, the Christians books are written by Christians, the Jewish books by Jews, but the books on Islam are written by Christians, Jews, Orientalists, atheists – and maybe you’ll find one or two by a Muslim if you’re lucky!

Concerning your statement that we then “have to decide what to do about Question 1”, well it has already been addressed, since “Question 1” has been shown to be marred by a mis-translation, and your hypothetical opinion of the “local Imam” has already been addressed above. As far as the reasons why Muslims don’t just “accept that the prophecy has already happened, as many people think it has?”, as I’ve already said, Islam isn’t made up of personal desires, whims or what “people think”. It is based on Divine Revelation. The long quotation from Ibn Taymiyyah, which I included above, should be enough to prove that the Muslim position on this issue is the one most consistent with both the Qur’an and the authentic hadeeths.

Your third question was: “If Jesus spoke from his cradle only days after he had been born, this would really be a miracle. However, both Christians and Muslims believe that when Jesus was born on Earth, He was a perfect man. Men don’t speak when they are only babies, so was God speaking through him? If so, then the words are those of God, not Jesus. In the same way, Muslims believe that the words in the Qur’an are from Allah, not Muhammad. If Jesus really did speak from his cradle, then 1) he would be much more than a mere human, and 2) why did Christians not report such a miracle to reinforce the status of Jesus?”

Well this paragraph sure brings up some interesting questions! While it is true that Christians and Muslim both believe that Jesus was a “perfect” man, they don’t believe this in the same way. When Muslims say that Jesus, or any other prophet, was “perfect”, they mean “free from sin”. Many scholars hold that this means free from both major and minor sins, while others hold that it only means major sins during their actual call to prophethood – and anything that would have effected their ability to carry out their prophetic duties. However, none of the prophets were free from unintentional mistakes or mistakes in judgment, since even the Qur’an documents some of these about Muhammad, peace be upon him. This having been said, it should be clear that Muslims don’t consider Jesus, peace be upon him, or any of the other prophets, to have been “perfect” in the absolute sense, since that attribute is reserved for Almighty God alone.

Now concerning your statement: “Men don’t speak when they are only babies, so was God speaking through him?”, you seemed to have unnecessarily limited the various options and interpretations of this event. Even though it is certainly possible that Almighty God was speaking through him (just like He did to all of His prophets), the more apparent meaning is that God gave him the ability (or caused him) to be able to speak in the cradle. And “yes!”, this certainly is a miracle, since anytime such a wondrous and extraordinary thing happens due to God’s will, it is a miracle. Additionally, I don’t know why you conclude that this disqualifies Jesus from being a “perfect man”. As I’ve already said, “perfect” means “free from sin”, and participating in a miracle with God’s help is certainly not a sin. Actually, a sinful act would be to refuse to participate in, or believe in, such a miracle.

Moving on . . . your conclusion that if Jesus, peace be upon him, did speak from the cradle, “he would be much more than a mere human” seems to be a bit inconsistent, since most prophets of God did miracles. However, in spite of the fact that they did miracles, this does not mean that they are more than human beings. This is one of the main misconceptions that Islam came to correct, both among the idol-worshippers and the Christians. This is because Christians use inconsistent logic when trying to justify the alleged “Divinity” of Jesus by saying that he did great miracles. Both Muslims and Christians agree that Moses parted the Red Sea (Exodus 14:21-22), but does that make him “more than human”? Elisha fed one hundred men with only a few loaves of bread and ears of corn (II Kings 4:44), he cured the blind (II Kings 6:17-20), and even raised the dead (II Kings 4:34 ). Elijah, according to the Old Testament, also raised people from the dead (I Kings 17:22). However, none of this made these great prophets “Divine” or “more than human”. Above, I have already quoted verses from the New Testament which prove that Jesus only did his miracles by the power of God – just like the other prophets.

An important point that I need to mention is that the root of all “shirk”, which is the Arabic word for associating and worshipping others along with Almighty God, is the belief that prophets and other “holy men” were “more than human”. In the Qur’an, God Almighty said: “And they said: ‘Do not forsake your gods, neither Wadd, Suwa’, Yaghuth, Ya’uq, nor Nasr” (Qur’an 71:23). It is narrated in an authentic hadeeth that Ibn ‘Abbas, a companion of the Prophet , commented on this verse as follows: “These are names of righteous people, descendants of Noah. When they passed away, Satan inspired their people to set up statues in their honor and to give the statues the names of the departed. Later, when their origins were forgotten, the excessive esteem paid to them turned into worship”.

Unfortunately your mentality seems to be very close to the prevalent Christian mindset which elevates Jesus to “Divinity” based on his miracles. This is unfortunate, because this is the same mistake that other religions have fallen into. In whatever way, they almost all believe in One Supreme Creator God, but they set up intermediaries between themselves and Almighty God. This tendency can be seen not only in Hindus and Christians, but was also the belief of the pagan Arabs at the time of Muhammad, peace be upon him. As the following verses clearly show, they believed in “One God”, but they used intermediaries to approach Him: “Ask them (i.e. the pagan disbelievers): ‘Who sends down for you your provision from the sky and grows it out of the earth? Who hears your prayer and sees your condition? Who brings the living out of the dead and the dead out of the living? Who directs the course of the world?’ They will answer: ‘God’. Answer: ‘Would you then not fulfill your duty to Him?'” (Qur’an 10:31) “Those who worshipped others as patrons beside God, claiming that they did so only to come through their intercession nearer to Him, will receive the judgment of God in the matter they contend. God will not guide the ingrate, the liar.” (Qur’an 39:3) “They serve beside God beings which can neither benefit nor harm, claiming, ‘These are our intercessors with God’.” (Qur’an 10:18) “And when they ride in barks [in stormy seas] they address their prayers to Almighty God in complete sincerity, but relapse into shirk (i.e. associating partners with Him) when they reach the shore.” (Qur’an 29:65)

Keeping these verses in mind, a believer in Pure Monotheism (i.e. a Muslim) realizes that no matter how many miracles anyone does, they are not God. This is because only God is God. The Creator and His creation are distinct – there is no ambiguity in “Divinity”. As the Ten Commandments say, there is no image “in the heavens above or in the earth beneath” which can represent Almighty God. Unfortunately, if one looks at the justifications that Christians often use for considering Jesus, peace be upon him, to be “Divine”, it becomes rather evident they have become caught up in trying to “elevate” him to being Divine. At least that is the way many of them seem to rationalize it to themselves. These types of ideas first took root among pagan Greeks and Romans, who were used to having incarnate gods. However, the Jews – who placed a high value on monotheism – for the most part completely rejected Trinitarian Christianity and its Incarnationist ideas.

Before moving on I should address an issue that Christians often bring up in response to statements like some of the ones which I’ve made above. They basically ask how Muslims can accuse the followers of Jesus, peace be upon him, of being “polytheists” when they were all “monotheistic Jews”. Actually, Muslims don’t levy any such claim against the actual disciples of Jesus, peace be upon him, since the corruption of the Pure Monotheism of Jesus was done by later so-called Christians (who were influenced by Paul). However, suffice it to say that just because someone is a nominal member of a “monotheistic” community, there is no guarantee that they will not get caught up in corrupt beliefs that compromise their “monotheism”. In this regard, the label “polytheism” doesn’t really sound right, since to many it implies simply believing in the existence of more than one God. So when applied to Christians, the words “associators”, “man-worshippers” or “creature worshippers” might be more accurate and appropriate terms – especially since Christians believe Jesus to be both “100% God and 100% man” – while still paying lip-service to God’s “Oneness”. However, what is really at the root of this problem is the fact that Christians don’t really know what “monotheism” means – especially in the Islamic sense. All of the books, articles and papers that I’ve read which were written by Christians invariably limit “monotheism” to believing in the existence of “One Sovereign and Creator God” – as seemingly opposed to two, three or four (as if there are pagans out there who belief such a thing???). Islam, however, teaches much more than this. Since the pure Islamic concept of monotheism (Arabic: Tawheed) is not the main subject of this paper, I wont’ go into great detail. However, suffice it to say that just because someone claims to be a “monotheistic” Jew, Christian or Muslim, that doesn’t keep them from falling into corrupt beliefs and idolatrous practices. Many people, including some so-called Muslims, claim belief in “One God” even though they’ve fallen into acts of idolatry. Certainly, many Protestants accuse Roman Catholics of idolatrous practices in regards to the saints and the Virgin Mary. Likewise, the Greek Orthodox Church is considered “idolatrous” by many other Christians because in much of their worship they use icons. However, if you ask a Roman Catholic or a Greek Orthodox person if God is “One”, they will invariably answer: “Yes!”. This lip-service, however, does not stop them from being “creature worshipping” idolaters. The same goes for Hindus, who just consider their gods to be “manifestations” or “incarnations” of the One Supreme God. You should know that throughout the long history of the “Abrahamic Faiths”, there have people who, while believing in “One God”, have adopted beliefs and practices that completely nullify their claim to “monotheism”. This is the Muslim view of Christians. We’re well aware of the fact that they claim belief in “One God” with your lips, but this doesn’t mean that they don’t nullify their claim in other ways. This is because many people simply haven’t been taught everything that Pure Monotheism entails. From an Islamic point of view, “monotheism” can be nullified in many ways. For example, simply believing that it is permissible to rule by Western “liberal” and “democratic” laws in lieu of the Divinely Revealed Law of Almighty God makes one a “polytheist”. Certainly, a person who does such a thing, whether Jewish, Christian or Muslim, doesn’t ever believe that there is another Almighty Creator and Sovereign Lord. However, for all practical purposes, such a person has take another “god”, whether they choose to admit it or not. In this way they are associating partners with Almighty God (Arabic: shirk), and thus become a “polytheistic” in a practical sense, regardless of their lip-service to “monotheism”. This holds true even if the person doesn’t believe what they are doing is “worship”. For example, Roman Catholics who pray to the Virgin Mary will staunchly deny that they are “worshipping” her. They instead call it “adoration” or some other watered-down term. However, from an Islamic point of view, what is worship if not this? Additionally, how can someone who believes in Almighty God follow man-made laws instead of God’s Law, without admitting that they’ve begun worshipping other than God? Do they know better than God? What is their concept of Him? Etc., etc., etc., Food for thought . . .

Concerning the issue of why “did Christians not report such a miracle to reinforce the status of Jesus?”, that’s a fairly easy one to answer because Christians left out lots of things in their reports of Jesus, peace be upon him, in the so-called “Four Gospels”. Many a scholar has noted that if you take all of the words spoken by Jesus in the so-called “Gospels”, they would hardly be enough to fill two newspaper columns. Since, according to the New Testament, Jesus’ ministry lasted about three years, there must have been a lot he said and did that was not recorded. Anyway, many of the events that are recorded in the so-called “Gospels” are not recorded unanimously by all four of the writers. For example, the raising of Lazarus from the dead, one of Jesus’ greatest miracles, is reported in only one gospel. Why did the other gospel writers leave it out? Additionally, the accounts of Jesus’ alleged Resurrection differ greatly (read them and compare!), and his Ascension is not reported in all four of the so-called “Gospels”, etc., etc., etc.

As anyone who has read the “Four Gospels” knows, many of the stories included in there differ quite a bit, especially the stories of his childhood, which is our main concern here. For example, Matthew is the only one that tells the story of the “Flight into Egypt” (Matthew 2:13-15), Luke is the only one that mentions that Jesus was brought to the Temple in Jerusalem as a young boy (Luke 2:22-24) and John leaves out mentioning Jesus’ childhood altogether. Why is this? There must have been many other incidents that weren’t mentioned, but just because they were not mentioned by the so-called “Gospel writers”, doesn’t mean that they didn’t happen. Reasonably speaking, the Qur’an portrays the incident of Jesus, peace be upon him, speaking from the cradle as being directed towards disbelieving and hostile Jews. Most probably, none of Jesus’ followers-to-be were around at the time, so it is no wonder that the “Gospel” writers didn’t know about it.

One final point may help in bringing out more clearly the fact that many important miracles were often reported by only one of the “Gospel” writers. Two short verses in Matthew say that at the moment of Jesus’ death “the tombs were opened; and many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised; and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they entered into the holy city and appeared unto many” (Matthew 27:52-53). This is an account of a miracle unsurpassed anywhere else in the so-called “Four Gospels”, and it makes the alleged Resurrection of Jesus appear like nothing in comparison. In this case, many saints were raised and appeared to “many” in Jerusalem. Unlike the accounts of Jesus raising Lazarus, or the synagogue ruler’s daughter or Jesus himself being raised, this depicts saints dead for much longer than “three days” being raised. And, from the phrase, “they entered the holy city and appeared to many”, it is possible to conclude that these many raised saints showed themselves to both believers and non-believers! However, Matthew is the only one to report this great event. Josephus, who was a historian who wrote a history of Jerusalem both prior to and after her fall, i.e., forty years after the death of Jesus, knew of Jesus, peace be upon him, but he said nothing about this great “raising” and “appearing” of many saints. Of this greatest of all miracles, not a rumor appears in the works of Josephus or of any other ancient author. Surely at least one of the many raised out of those many emptied tombs was still alive just prior to Josephus’ time. Or at least many who had seen those many saints were still repeating the tale. Although people may have doubted that Jesus raised a few people while he was alive and although “some doubted” Jesus’ own Resurrection (Matthew 28:17), who could fail to have been impressed by many risen saints appearing to many? How also could Peter have neglected to mention them in his Jerusalem speech a mere fifty days after they “appeared to many in the holy city”? Surely their appearance must have been foremost on everyone’s mind. So why didn’t Paul mention such a thing in his letters, our earliest sources? Surely, if the Holy Spirit inspired Matthew to write about it, he could have inspired the others. Why did the women who visited the “empty tomb” on the Sunday morning of Jesus’ alleged Resurrection not take notice that many other tombs were likewise open? Why didn’t the visitors to Jesus’ tomb mention that they had met or seen many raised saints in that vicinity, meeting them on the way to Jesus’ tomb or on the way back to town? Why didn’t Matthew know how many raised saints there were? Why didn’t he name a single one or a single person to whom they had appeared? How did Matthew know that these saints had come out of their tombs? So basically, your question of why Christians didn’t report that Jesus, peace be upon him, spoke from the cradle actually brings up more questions than it attempts to answer. More food for thought . . .

I hope that these answers are adequate. I encourage you to not only reflect on them, but to research them more if you feel that it is necessary. For your own sake, and for the sake of Truth, try to “take a step back” and look at everything in an unbiased manner. It’s not always easy, but that’s the only way we can come to understand beliefs other than our own If you have any other questions relating to Islam, I would be more than happy to try to answer them for you – or find answers for you. I can be contacted by e-mail at abu_iman@muslim-answers.org. I pray that Almighty God guides you to the Truth, and I look forward to hearing from you in the future – insha’allah.

Best Regards,

‘Abd ar-Rahman Robert Squires

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IS JESUS (AS) THE SAME AS GOD?

http://www.sultan.org

Jesus was a man who spoke the truth which he heard from God. This can be compared with the Gospel According to John where Jesus says to the Israelites: “You are determined to kill me, a man who has told you the truth that I heard from God” (John 8:40).

IS JESUS THE SAME AS GOD?

In John 10:30 we find that Jesus says “I and my Father are one.” This verse, according to Christians, shows clearly that God and Jesus Christ are the same. Also we read in John 20:17, “Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.” Here Jesus clearly states that there is distinction between him and God. In other words that Jesus himself has a God. Also Matthew 27:46 “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” Here Jesus Christ cries in loud voice calling his God.

These are two different and opposite ways Jesus relates himself to God. The first one that he and God are one, and the second is that he refers to a higher authority than him which is his God. Now assuming that both are correct statements then we have a contradiction. If, for example, Jesus Christ was God himself as in John 10:30 then it would be more appropriate for him to say “…and to myself, and your God.” in John 20:17, or “Myself, Myself, why hast thou forsaken me?” in Matthew 27:46. If, on the other hand, one of them is wrong and the other is correct then we have to discard the one that we believe to be incorrect. Since God does not make mistakes then we no longer believe that the Bible is the word of God (because we believe that there is a contradiction God’s words).

A third possibility is that we have to look at how we can interpret the words of Jesus in those verses. As far as John 20:17 and Matthew 27:46 it is very clear that Jesus has a God whom he prays to and Whom has a higher authority than him. We can back this up with other verses from the bible that say, “I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.” (John 5:30). Also Jesus says, “…for my Father is greater than I” (John 14:28). If Jesus and God were the same then he would not have said what he has said in the above verses. Now, the only verse that can be interpreted is John 10:30. It is the only one that does not render itself clear. The only way John 10:30 could be interpreted such that it does not contradict all the other verses is by saying that Jesus meant that he and God have something in common.

To find out what the common grounds are, we have to look at the context which this verse is in:

John 10:27-10:30 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. I and my Father are one.

As can be seen from John 10:28 and John 10:29 that Jesus is telling the Jews that he and God share something in common, and that is; that no one can pluck the faithful from either of their hands. This is what is common between Jesus and God in this case, and not that Jesus is himself is God, or that they are exactly the same.

Let us go on to see what Jesus says in John 10:

John 10:31 Then the Jews took up stones again to stone him.

John 10:32 Jesus answered them, Many good works have I showed you from my Father; for which of those works do ye stone me?

John 10:33 The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.

John 10:34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?

John 10:35 If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken;

John 10:36 Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God?

John 10:37 If I do not the works of my Father, believe me not.

John 10:38 But if I do, though ye believe not me, believe the works: that ye may know, and believe, that the Father is in me, and I in him.

John 10:39 Therefore they sought again to take him: but he escaped out of their hand,

John 10:40 And went away again beyond Jordan

In John 10:31 we see that the Jews misunderstood what Jesus had meant by “I and my Father are one.” (John 10:30). And in John 10:33 they accuse him of blasphemy. Now, had Jesus been God, or had he and God been one in a literal sense then he should not hesitate to clarify the matter at this point. Jesus at this point says, “Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?” What he is trying to say that if you call “I and my Father are one” blasphemy then you should call what is written in your law “Ye are gods” blasphemy also. The reasoning here is that “Ye are gods” does not mean that you, the Jews, are Gods, it is rather an expression. It just means that you are godly people. The same with “I and my Father are one.” It does not mean that I am God or that we are the same literally. It is just an expression. The same goes for calling himself “the Son of God.” This statement should not be taken literally either.

The Holy Quran says, “…Nothing whatsoever (is there) like the like of Him, and He (alone) is All-Hearing and All-Seeing” (Ch 42: Vr 11). Nothing at all is like God, not Moses, not Jesus, not Muhammad, and certainly nothing of His creation.

What About All These Verses?

After I discuss the above with my Christian brothers they ask me, “but what about the other verses that say Jesus is God?” and they show me some of them. Some of these verses are:

1. John 8:58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.

My Christians brothers here associate this verse to the words that God had said to Moses in the Old Testament when He said to him in Exodus 3:14 “And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.” What Jesus said is similar to what God had said to Moses therefor they are the same. (Of course Jesus does not say explicitly that he is God here, and I could show that what he meant was not that he was God, but I will leave this for another discussion.)

2. Matthew 18:20 “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”

Jesus here gives himself divine quality, being present as God.

3. Revelation 1:17 And when I saw him, I fell at his feet as dead. And he laid his right hand upon me, saying unto me, Fear not; I am the first and the last:

Revelation 1:18 I am he that liveth, and was dead; and, behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.

Jesus here says that he is the first and the last. This is clearly a divine quality. Also he says that he has the keys of hell and of death. This is also a divine quality.

I really don’t know how many more verse like these are available, but let us assume that there are more than that. I reply to them that what you showed me right now only backs me up even further, and before I explain how, I relate the following verse to them:

1. Mark 13:32 But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.

It is shown here that God and only God and not the son (Jesus) has the knowledge of the time of the Judgment day. Jesus here denies his divinity (since God knows everything).

2. John 5:19 Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

Here Jesus also says that his powers do not belong to him, and he alone, without the help of God, can do nothing. Again Jesus is denying divine qualities.

3. John 5:30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.

Here Jesus also denies any divine qualities. He (Jesus), without God can do nothing.

4. John 20:17 Jesus saith unto her, Touch me not; for I am not yet ascended to my Father: but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.

Also, Matthew 27:46 And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?

Here Jesus, in the first verse, says that he has a God, and in the second he cries out for his God. Surely God does not have a god. Jesus clearly shows that he has a God and that he is not divine.

5. John 5:37 And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape.

Jesus clearly states that no one had even heard God’s voice, and not even seen his shape. This is Jesus talking, and his voice heard and his shape is seen to those he is with at the moment, so it must be not him that he is referring to as the Divine character, and that means that they (Jesus and God) are not the same.

6. John 14:28 Ye have heard how I said unto you, I go away, and come again unto you. If ye loved me, ye would rejoice, because I said, I go unto the Father: for my Father is greater than I.

Here Jesus also says that God is greater that he is. Again he is disclaiming divinity.

7. Matthew 19:17 And he said unto him, Why callest thou me good? There is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.

When a man referred to Jesus by good master, Jesus replied to him by saying that there is only one good which is God. If Jesus cannot even claim that he is good, then why should he claim that he is God?

These are all verses from the bible some show Christ to be God or having some qualities of God and others that show the he is not God and that he does not have divine qualities. Which are we to believe? Aren’t these contradictions? I say to all my Christian brothers that brought me the verse that claim Christ’s divinity, “now you have to explain to me how such a thing could be. What does all this mean?”

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THE PLAIN TRUTH

By Ahmed Deedat

1.5 THE “SON OF GOD”

[The Qur’an, Al-Anbia(21):19-29] “And unto Him belongs whosoever is in the heavens and the earth and those who dwell in His presence do not scorn to worship Him nor do they weary. They glorify Him night and day; They flag not. Or have they chosen gods from the earth who raise the dead If there were therein gods besides Allah then verily both (the heavens and the earth) would have gone to ruin. Glorified be Allah, the Lord of the Throne from all they ascribe (unto Him). He is not questioned as to that which He does, but they will be questioned. Or have they chosen other gods besides Him, say: Bring your proof (of their godhead), this is the reminder of those with me and those before me, but most of them know not the truth so they are averse (to it). And we sent no messenger before you but we inspired him (saying): There is no god save Me (Allah) so worship Me. And they say: The Compassionate has taken unto himself a son. Nay! but (they) are but honored servants. They speak not until He has spoken and they obey His command. He knows what is before them and what is behind them and they cannot intercede except for those whom He accepts and they quake for awe of Him. And whosoever among them says: I am a god other than Allah, the same shall We reward with Hell. Thus do We reward the wrong doers.”

[The noble Qur’an, A’al-Umran(3):40] “And the angles said “O Mary, Allah gives you glad tidings of a Word from Him, his name is Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, High honored in this world and the next, of those near stationed to Allah.”

We as Muslims do not differ with Christians in the fact that Jesus (pbuh) was indeed born miraculously without a human father. Muslims only differ with Christians in the Christian’s claim that Jesus (pbuh) must have a father. Trinitarians believe that if he has no human father then his father must be God. Muslims believe that he had no father whatsoever, and this was the essence of his miraculous birth.

[The noble Qur’an, A’al-Umran(3):59] “The similitude of Jesus before Allah is as that of Adam, he created him from dust, then said to him: ‘Be’ and he was”

[The noble Qur’an, Yunus(10):68] “They say: Allah has taken a son. Glorified be He! He has no needs! His is all that is in the heavens and that is in the earth. You have no warrant for this, do you say regarding Allah that which you know not?”

[The noble Qur’an, Al-Maidah (5):75] “The Messiah, son of Mary, was only a messenger, messengers (the like of whom) had passed away before him. And his mother was a saintly woman. They both used to eat (earthly) food. See how we make the signs clear for them, then see how they are deluded!”

[John 17:3] “And this is life eternal, that they might know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.”

Notice the above words of the Bible: “YOU the ONLY true God.” Most Christians always manage to see a hidden abstract meaning for the verses of the Bible. Even when they read the above verse they always manage to understand something totally different than that which they are reading. They always interpret the word “you” to be “we,” and thus, understand the above verse to say “WE the only true god.” Jesus (pbuh) is obviously talking to a distinctly different entity than himself and telling that entity that He ALONE is the only true God. Is Jesus (pbuh) incapable of saying “I the only true God” or “We the only true God” if that is what he meant? Can we see the difference?

Mr. Tom Harpur says in the preface to his book: “The most significant development since 1986 in this regard has been the discovery of the title “Son of God” in one of the Qumran papyri (Dead Sea Scrolls) used in relation to a person other than Jesus…..this simply reinforces the argument made there that to be called the Son of God in a Jewish setting in the first century is not by any means the same as being identical with God Himself.” [For Christ’s Sake, pp. xii. ] (please read chapter 7 for more on the Dead Sea Scrolls)

[The noble Qur’an, Al-Maidah(5):72] “Surly they have disbelieved who say: “Allah is the Messiah, son of Mary. ‘ But the Messiah said: “O Children of Israel! Worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord.’ Verily, whosoever sets up partners in worship with Allah then Allah has forbidden Paradise upon him, and his abode is the Fire.And for the unjust there are no allys”

With regard to your second comment, Mr. J, I am not “implying” anything. The Qur’an clearly states in no uncertain terms that God “created” Jesus. Let us quote from the unbiased Webster’s dictionary as to what is “implied” by the word “begotten”: “To procreate as the father, sire, to produce as an effect or an outgrowth.” Muslims feel such claims with regard to God Almighty are an abomination.

1.2.3.1 Anglican bishops declare that Jesus is not God:

Muslims are not the only ones who believe that Jesus (pbuh) is mortal and not a god. The Jews also believe this, in addition to the very first groups of Christianity such as the Ebonites, the Cerinthians, the Basilidians, the Capocratians, and the Hypisistarians. The Arians, Paulicians and Goths also accepted Jesus (pbuh) as a prophet of God. Even in the modern age there are churches in Asia, in Africa, the Unitarian church, the Jehovah’s witnesses, and even the majority of today’s Anglican Bishops do not worship Jesus (pbuh) as God.

In the British newspaper the “Daily News” 25/6/84 under the heading “Shock survey of Anglican Bishops” We read: “More than half of England’s Anglican Bishops say that Christians are not obliged to believe that Jesus Christ was God, according to a survey published today. The pole of 31 of England’s 39 bishops shows that many of them think that Christ’s miracles, the virgin birth and the resurrection might not have happened exactly as described in the Bible. Only 11 of the bishops insisted that Christians must regard Christ as both God and man, while 19 said it was sufficient to regard Jesus as “God’s supreme agent'” [“Daily News” 25/6/84]

But what is a messenger of God? Is he not “God’s supreme agent” ?. This is indeed what God Himself has already told us in the noble Qur’an 1400 years ago, and exactly what Jesus (pbuh) himself testified to in the Bible: “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent.” [John 17:3]

Astounding, isn’t it? With every passing day, the most learned among the Christian community are slowly recognizing the truth and drawing closer and closer to Islam. These are not Muslims who issued this statement. These are not “liberal” Christians. These are the most learned and most highly esteemed men of the Anglican Church. These men have dedicated their whole lives to the study of the religion of Jesus, and their study has driven them to the truth which God had already revealed to them in the Qur’an 1400 years ago: That Jesus was not God. That God is not a Trinity. And that the stories of the ministry of Jesus in the Bible have been extensively tampered with by the hands of mankind.

Rev. Professor David Jenkins, the fourth highest-ranking Bishop in the Church of England and the Bishop of Durham had the following admission to make: “Some of the events in the early mission of Jesus] were not strictly true but were added to the story of Jesus by the early Christians to express their faith in him as a Messiah” [London Daily Mail, page 12, 15/July/1984]

[The noble Qur’an, Al-Maidah(5):116-118] “And when Allah said: O Jesus, son of Mary! Did you say unto mankind: Take me and my mother for two gods beside Allah? he said: Be You glorified. It was not mine to utter that to which I had no right. If I used to say it, then You knew it. You know what is in my [innermost] self but I know not what is in Yours. Truly! You, only You are the Knower of things hidden. I spoke unto them only that which You commanded me, (saying): Worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord, and I was a witness over them while I dwelt among them, and when You took me You were the Watcher over them, and You are Witness over all things.”

[The noble Qur’an, A’l-Umran(3):79.] “It is not (possible) for any human being for Allah to give him the Scripture and the knowledge and the Prophethood then he should say to mankind: “Be worshippers of me instead of Allah.’ Rather, [he would say,]: Be you faithful learned worshippers of the Lord by virtue of your teaching of the Scripture and of your study [thereof]”

The Church, as Heinz Zahrnt put it “put words into the mouth of Jesus which he never spoke and attributed actions to him which he never performed.” One of those who has shown that most of what the church says about Jesus is baseless is Rudolph Augustein in his book “Jesus the Son of Man.” Another very comprehensive study of this matter can be found in the book “The Myth of God Incarnate” which was written by seven theologian scholars in England in 1977 and edited by John Hick. Their conclusion in this matter is that Jesus was “a man approved by God, for a special role within the divine purpose, and….. the later conception of him as God incarnate … is a mythological or poetic way of expressing his significance for us.” See also John Mackinnon Robertson’s “Christianity and Mythology” T.W Doane’s “The Bible Myths and their Parallels in Other Religions” (A good summary of these studies is available in M.F. Ansarei, “Islam and Christianity in the Modern World”).

A University of Richmond professor, Dr. Robert Alley, after considerable research into newly found ancient documents concludes that: “….The (Biblical) passages where Jesus talks about the Son of God are later additions…. what the church said about him. Such a claim of deity for himself would not have been consistent with his entire lifestyle as we can reconstruct. For the first three decades after Jesus’ death Christianity continued as a sect within Judaism. The first three decades of the existence of the church were within the synagogue. That would have been beyond belief if they (the disciples) had boldly proclaimed the deity of Jesus.”

Is there any confirmation of this in the Bible, yes! If we were to read the Bible we would find that long after the departure of Jesus, his faithful followers continued to “keep up their daily attendance at the Temple” (Acts 2:46) It would be beyond belief to imagine that had Jesus indeed preached to his apostles that he was God, and if Jesus had indeed commanded them to forsake the commandments, that they would then disregard all of this and continue to worship in a Jewish synagogue on a daily basis, let alone the great Temple itself. It is further beyond belief that the Jews of the Temple would stand idly by and allow them to do this if they were preaching the total cancellation of the law of Moses and that Jesus was God.

Can any Trinitarian Christian, even in their wildest fantasies, imagine that the Jews in an orthodox Jewish synagogue would stand idly by while he took out his cross and prayed to Jesus in the midst of their synagogue and was publicly calling others to worship Jesus and forsake the commandments? How much more preposterous to imagine that they would have nothing to say to someone who did that in their most sacred of all synagogues, the Temple, on a daily basis yet. This is further evidence in support of the Qur’an, that Jesus only called his followers to a continuation of the religion of Moses and not by any means to the total cancellation and destruction of that law.

In the previous section, we read the following verses of the Bible: “Know therefore this day, and consider [it] in thine heart, that the LORD he [is] God in heaven above, and upon the earth beneath: [there is] none else.” [Deuteronomy 4:39.]

“Thou shalt have no other gods before me.” [Exodus 20:3]

“For thou shalt worship no other god: for the LORD, whose name [is] Jealous, [is] a jealous God:” [Exodus 34:14]

“Ye [are] my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I [am] he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. I, [even] I, [am] the LORD; and beside me [there is] no savior.” [Isaiah 43:10-11]

“Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I [am] the first, and I [am] the last; and beside me [there is] no God.” [Isaiah 44:6]

“That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that [there is] none beside me. I [am] the LORD, and [there is] none else.” [Isaiah 45:6]

“For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I [am] the LORD; and [there is] none else.” [Isaiah 45:18]

“Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I [am] God, and [there is] none else.” [Isaiah 45:22]

Now we should begin to ask ourselves: If there was no god before or after God Almighty, then how was Jesus (pbuh) “begotten” as a god? The answer is: he was not. He was a mortal man, not a god. We even have the testimony of the majority of today’s Anglican Bishops in defense of this basic truth. If we want the testimony of a trustworthy witness then how much more trustworthy a witness shall we ever find than the majority of the most learned and respected conservative Christians of the Anglican Church?

The Bible only preaches that Jesus is God and that God is a Trinity to those who do not know its innermost details and the truth of the history of the Church as these men have come to know it. But let us move on in our study of the Biblical verses so that we can see only a small sampling of the evidence that has made the truth clear to these men.

1.2.3.2 How many “Sons” does God have?:

Many people tell us “but the Bible clearly says that Jesus is the Son of God. How can you say that Jesus is not God’s only begotten son when Jesus says it so clearly in black and white in the Bible?” Well, first of all, as seen in the previous section, we first need to know the language of his people, the language of the Jews to whom he was speaking. Let us see how they understood this proclamation.

Let us begin by asking: How many sons does the Bible tell us that God Almighty has?

Jacob is God’s son and firstborn: “Israel is my son, even my firstborn” Exodus 4:22. Solomon is God’s son “He shall build an house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom for ever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son” [2 Samuel 7:13-14. ]

Ephraim is God’s firstborn: “for I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn.” [Jeremiah 31:9] (who is God’s firstborn? Israel or Ephraim?).

Adam is the son of God “Adam, which was the son of God.” [Luke 3:38.]

Common people (you and me) are the sons of God: “Ye are the children of the LORD your God” [ Deuteronomy 14:1.]

“For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God” [Romans 8:14.]

“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, [even] to them that believe on his name:” [John 1:12.]

“That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world;” [Philippians 2:15.]

“Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: … now are we the sons of God” [1 John 3:1-2.]

“When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?” [Job 38:7.]

“Again there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD,” [Job 2:1.]

“Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the LORD,” [Job 1:6.]

“when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men,” [Genesis 6:4.]

“That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they [were] fair” [Genesis 6:2]

As we can see, the use of the term “son of God” when describing normal human beings was not at all an uncommon practice among Jesus’ people. Well then, was Jesus the only begotten son of God? Read Psalms 2:7: “I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me (King David), Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.” [Psalms 2:7]

Such terminology can be found quite extensively throughout the Bible. For example:

“My mother and my brothers are these which hear the word of God, and do it.” [Luke 8:21]

“For whosoever shall do the will of God, the same is my brother, and my sister, and mother.” [Mark 3:35]

Indeed, the Jews are even referred to as much more than this in the Bible, and this is indeed the very trait which Jesus (pbuh) held against them. When the Jews picked up stones to stone Jesus (pbuh) he defended himself with the following words: “The Jews answered him (Jesus), saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God. Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, “I said, Ye are gods?’ If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken…” [John 10:33-34] (he was referring to Psalms 82:6 “I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High..”)

Many members of the Church point to John 10:33 to try and prove that Jesus (pbuh) claimed that he was the “son of God,” however, they stop here and to not bother to read Jesus’ answer in the next verse (quoted above). In this case we must ask those who say that Jesus (pbuh) claimed to “literally” or “physically” be the “son of God” to apply their same standard to the rest of the passage and also claim that the Jews too are “literally” and “physically” “gods.” The only way to claim that Jesus (pbuh) was “literally” the son of God while the Jews were not “literally” gods is to claim that Jesus took Psalms 82:6 out of context. Something he would never do.

As we can see from these and many other verses like them, “son of God” in the language of the Jews was a very innocent term used to describe a loyal servant of God. Whether the translators and editors chose to write it as “Son of God” (with a capital S) in reference to Jesus and “son of God” (with a small S) in reference to everyone else does not diminish the fact that in the original language, both cases are exactly the same. Are we beginning to see what drove the most learned men of the Anglican Church to recognize the truth? But let us move on.

Grolier’s encyclopedia, under the heading “Jesus Christ,” says: “During his earthly life Jesus was addressed as rabbi and was regarded as a prophet. Some of his words, too, place him in the category of sage. A title of respect for a rabbi would be “my Lord.” Already before Easter his followers, impressed by his authority, would mean something more than usual when they addressed him as “my Lord.”…. it is unlikely that the title “Son of David” was ascribed to him or accepted by him during his earthly ministry. “Son of God,” in former times a title of the Hebrew kings (Psalms 2:7), was first adopted in the post-Easter church as an equivalent of Messiah and had no metaphysical connotations (Romans 1:4). Jesus was conscious of a unique filial relationship with God, but it is uncertain whether the Father/Son language (Mark 18:32; Matt. 11:25-27 par.; John passim) goes back to Jesus himself” . [Grolier’s encyclopedia]

There seems to be only two places in the Bible where Jesus (pbuh) refers to himself as “son of God.” They are in John chapters 5 and 11. Hastings in “The dictionary of the Bible” says: “Whether Jesus used it of himself is doubtful.” Regardless, we have already seen what is meant by this innocent title. However, Jesus is referred to as the “son of Man” (literally: “Human being”) 81 times in the books of the Bible. In the Gospel of Barnabas, we are told that Jesus (pbuh) knew that mankind would make him a god after his departure and severely cautioned his followers from having anything to do with such people.

Jesus was not the son of a human man (according to both the Bible and the Qur’an). However, we find him constantly saying “I am the son of man” (eg. Matt. 17:12,Mark 8:38, Luke 9:56). Why?. It was because in the language of the Jews, that is how you say “I am a human being.”

What was he trying to tell us by constantly repeating and emphasizing to us throughout the New Testament “I am a human being,” “I am a human being,” “I am a human being”?. What had he foreseen? Think about it!.

Do Christians emphasize this aspect of Jesus? The New Testament Greek word translated as “son” are “pias” and “paida” which mean “servant,” or “son in the sense of servant.” These are translated to “son” in reference to Jesus and “servant” in reference to all others in some translations of the Bible (see below). As we are beginning to see, one of the most fundamental reasons why Jesus (pbuh) is considered God is due to extensive mistranslation. We shall see more and more examples of this throughout this book.

Islam teaches that Jesus (pbuh) was a human being, not a god. Jesus (pbuh) continually emphasized this to his followers throughout his mission. The Gospel of Barnabas also affirms this fact. Once again, Grolier’s encyclopedia says: “…Most problematical of all is the title “Son of Man.” This is the only title used repeatedly by Jesus as a self-designation, and there is no clear evidence that it was used as a title of majesty by the post-Easter church. Hence it is held by many to be authentic, since it passes the criterion of dissimilarity.” [Grolier’s encyclopedia]

In “The Dictionary of the Bible,” bearing the Nihil Obstat, Imprimatur, and Imprimi Potest (official Church seals of approval), we read: “[the title “son of man’] is a messianic title, occurring 70 times in the Synoptics, 12 times in Jn … It is remarkable not only that the phrase does not occur in the epistles, but also that in the Gospels it is used only by Jesus. To most scholars this is evidence that the title was original with Jesus himself, and that its abandonment outside the Gospels is due not only to its Semitic character, which would make it foreign to a Hellenistic (Greek) audience, but also it is a tribute to the originality” [The Dictionary of the Bible, John L. McKenzie, S.J., p. 832]

1.2.3.3 Because God was his “Father”?:

Is Jesus (pbuh) a divine son of God because he called God “Father”? Well, how do all Christians refer to Him? What does Jesus himself have to tell us in this regard? Let us read….

“That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven…” [Matthew 5:45]

“Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.” [Matthew 5:48:]

“And I (God) will receive you, And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty.” [2 Corinthians 6:17-18]

There are countless verses in the Bible to this effect. To understand what is meant by the reference to “Father” we need only read John 8:42: “Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me.”

So the love of God and His prophets is what makes God someone’s “father.”

Similarly, “Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do.” [John 8:44]

Obviously neither the Devil nor God is the physical father of any of them. The term “Father” in that day and age was used by the Jews in the same sense that Christians use the word “father” today to address a priest. It was not meant to be taken literally. Otherwise, the Bible would bear witness that every believer in Jesus (pbuh) is also the “physical” son of God.

Further, please note that Joseph is called a “father” to Pharaoh in Genesis 45:8, and Job is called the “father” of the poor in Job 29:16. Once we read all of this we begin to understand how the Jews used to understand the reference to God Almighty as “Father.”

1.2.3.4 Because he performed miracles?:

Well then, is Jesus the son of God because he raised the dead? If so, then what about Ezekiel who is said to have raised many more dead bodies than Jesus ever did. Ezekiel is said to have raised a whole city from the dead (Ezekiel 37:1-9)

If we are looking for Godly powers and miracles as proof of godliness then what about Joshua who is said to have stopped the sun and moon for one whole day: (Joshua 10:12-13). Can anyone but God Almighty do this?

Elisha is said to have raised the dead, resurrected himself, healed a leper, fed a hundred people with twenty barley loaves and a few ears of corn, and healed a blind man: (2 Kings 4:35, 13:21, 5:14, 4:44, and 6:11.)

Elijah is said to have raised the dead, and made a bowl of flour and a jar of oil inexhaustible for many days (1 Kings 17:22 and 14.)

To say nothing of Moses (pbuh) and his countless miracles. Of his parting of the sea, of his changing of a stick into a serpent, of his changing of water into blood, ..etc.

Even Jesus (pbuh) himself tells us that miracles by themselves do not prove anything: “For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if it were possible, they shall deceive the very elect” [Matthew 24:24] So even false Christs can supply great wonders and miracles of such magnitude that even the most knowledgeable among men shall be deceived.

Jesus (pbuh) had a beginning (the begetting) and an end (“and he gave up the ghost”) Melchizedec, however, is said to have had no beginning of days nor end of life but was “made like unto the Son of God” ! For this Melchizedec, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him; To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is, King of peace; Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually. Now consider how great this man [was], unto whom even the patriarch Abraham gave the tenth of the spoils.” [Hebrews 7:1-4]

Solomon is said to have been with God at the beginning of time before all of creation, Proverbs 8:22-31.

Well then, is Jesus (pbuh) god because he performed his miracles under his own power while others needed God to perform them for them? Let us then read:

“And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.” [Matthew 28:18]

“But when the multitudes saw [it], they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such power unto men.”[Matthew 9:8]

“But if I with the finger of God cast out devils.” [Luke 11:20]

“Jesus answered them, Many good works have I shewed you from my Father” [John 10:32]

“But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God.” [Matthew 12:28]

“I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.” [John 5:30]

“the works that I do in my Father’s name.” [John 10:25]

“…I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things. And he that sent me is with me: the Father hath not left me alone; for I do always those things that please him.” [John 8:28-29]

“Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know” [Acts 2:22]

So we see that even the apostle of Jesus (pbuh), Peter “the Rock,” bore witness many years after the departure of Jesus not that Jesus was “God, the Son of God, who did miracles through his Omnipotence,” rather, he openly bore witness before all those present that Jesus was “a man.” He then went on to make sure that the masses would not be mislead by Jesus’ miracles into thinking that he was more than a man by emphasizing that it was not Jesus who did the miracles, rather, just as was the case with countless other prophets before him, it was God Himself who did these miracles and that God’s prophets are simply the tools through which He performed His miracles. In other words, the point that Peter was trying to drive home to these people was for them to remember that just as Moses’ parting of the seas did not make him God or the son of God, and just as Elisha’s raising of the dead did not make him God or the son of God, so too was the case with Jesus.

What was the goal behind the performance of these miracles? Let us read John 11:42 where we find that just before Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead, he made a point of making sure that the crowd would not misunderstand what he was about to do or why he did it, so he publicly stated before God while they were listening that, just as was the case with all previous prophets, the reason why he was given these miracles was in order to prove that God had sent Him and he was a true prophet: “And I knew that Thou hearest me always; but because of the people standing around I said it, that they may believe that Thou didst send Me.” [John 11:42]

1.2.3.5 Because he was filled with the Holy Ghost?:

Well then was Jesus (pbuh) the son of God because he was filled with the Holy Ghost? Let us read:

“Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost.” [Luke 1:67]

“Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost.” [Luke 1:41]

“Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost said.” [Acts 4:8]

“Then Paul, filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on him..” [Acts 13:9 ]

“And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak.” [Acts 2:4]

Is Jesus(pbuh) a god because he was filled with the Holy Spirit from his mother’s womb? If this is the case then John the Baptist should be a god also, as claimed in Luke 1:13-15.

1.2.3.6 Because he was the “Image of God”?:

Some will now say: But in the Bible we read:

“….Christ, who is the image of God.” [2 Corinthians 4:4] Surely this makes Jesus God. Well then, we should also read: “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.” [Genesis 1:27]

1.2.3.7 Because he was “from above”?:

In John 8:23 we read, “And he (Jesus) said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.” [John 8:23] Does this make Jesus (pbuh) a god ? No! Why not read:

“I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world” [John 17:14] and “They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.” [John 17:16] There are many more similar examples.

1.2.3.8 Because he was the “Messiah/Christ” and the “Word”?:

Many people believe “Messiah” to be a mystical Biblical term which had been reserved by God from the beginning of time as a direct equivalent of “only begotten Son.” For this reason, when they see that Jesus is referred to in the Bible as “The Messiah” they immediately translate this to mean “The Son of God.” In order to clear up this misconception, let us first define the true meaning of the word Messiah and then show its exact usage in the Bible.

The word “Messiah” is the English version of the Hebrew word mashiyach {maw-shee’-akh}. The literal meaning of this word in the Hebrew language is “to anoint.” In our present day, it is customary for those who are appointed to high office (ie. the President of the US, Supreme Court justices, etc.) to attend a solemn ritual wherein that person is consecrated into office. During this ritual, certain rights of passage or ascension must be performed, such as repeating a solemn oath and so forth. Once such rituals have been successfully completed, only then is that person considered to have officially received the rights and obligations of this office.

In a similar fashion, in ancient times it was a common practice among the Jews to “anoint” those who were appointed positions of high authority. If we were to read the Bible we would find that every priest and king of ancient Israel was “anointed” by their people as a sign of official consecration to office. Further, we find that it was not at all uncommon for inanimate objects and even pagans to be “anointed.” For example:

Solomon: “And Zadok the priest took an horn of oil out of the tabernacle, and anointed Solomon. And they blew the trumpet; and all the people said, God save king Solomon.” [1 Kings 1:39]

David: “Then Samuel took the horn of oil, and anointed him in the midst of his brethren: and the Spirit of the LORD came upon David from that day forward. So Samuel rose up, and went to Ramah.” [1 Samuel 16:13]

Jewish priests: “If the priest that is anointed do sin according to the sin of the people; then let him bring for his sin, which he hath sinned, a young bullock without blemish unto the LORD for a sin offering.” [Leviticus 4:3]

Cyrus the pagan: “Thus saith the LORD to his Messiah, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden, to subdue nations before him; and I will loose the loins of kings, to open before him the two leaved gates; and the gates shall not be shut;” [Isaiah 45:1]

A pillar: “I [am] the God of Bethel, where thou anointedst the pillar, [and] where thou vowedst a vow unto me: now arise, get thee out from this land, and return unto the land of thy kindred.” [Genesis 31:13]

The tabernacle: “And Moses took the anointing oil, and anointed the tabernacle and all that [was] therein, and sanctified them.” [Leviticus 8:10]

A cherub: “Thou [art] the anointed cherub that covereth; and I have set thee [so]: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire.” [Ezekiel 28:14 ]

Sick people: “And they cast out many devils, and anointed with oil many that were sick, and healed [them].” [Mark 6:13]

Jesus anoints a blind man

“When he had thus spoken, he spat on the ground, and made clay of the spittle, and he anointed the eyes of the blind man with the clay,” [John 9:6 ] When this word was translated into ancient Greek, the words used were “Messias” {mes-see’-as} and “Christos” {khris-tos’} (see John 1:41, 4:25). This is where we get the word “Christ” from, it was originally derived from the Greek word for “anoint.” Jesus was indeed “christened,” or “anointed,” or “baptized,” by John the Baptist before the beginning of his ministry as seen for example in Matthew 3:16 among many other verses.

This is not to say that just because the word “Messiah” was applied to others that it was not a specific designation for Jesus. It only goes to show that this title does not imply a position as “Son of God.”

For example, all of the prophets of God are “friends of God,” however, only prophet Abraham received this title as an official designation for himself (James 2:23). In a similar manner, all of the prophets of God in ancient Israel were all “anointed” prophets, however, as an official designation, this title was reserved exclusively for Jesus. This is indeed confirmed in the noble Qur’an: “And the angles said “O Mary, Allah gives you glad tidings of a Word from Him, his name is Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, High honored in this world and the next, of those near stationed to Allah.” [The noble Qur’an, Aal-Umran(3):40]

In fact, prophet Abraham is also fondly referred to by Muslims as the “Khaleel-ullah” (“Friend of God”), and prophet Moses is referred to as “Kaleem-ullah” (“The one spoken to by God”). However, just because prophet Abraham is the “friend of God,” this does not imply that all other prophets (Noah, Moses, etc.) are all “enemies of God.” Similarly, just because Jesus (pbuh) is a “word” from God and a “spirit” from Him does not imply that that he is “part of” God, or that this designation is exclusive to him. For example, in the Qur’an we read: “So when I (God) have fashioned him (Adam) and breathed into him of My spirit, fall you (Angels, and those in attendance) down in prostration before him.” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Hijr(15):29] and Verily! Our (Allah’s) Word unto a thing when We intend it, is only that We say unto it “Be!” – and it is” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Nahil(16):40 (please also read chapter 14)]

To make such terminology clearer, let us take the example of the term “house of God,” or “My house” as seen in the Bible and the Qur’an in 1 Chronicles 9:11, and Al-Bakarah(2):125. If God is not confined to a specific house or location (both Muslims and Christians agree to this), then what is meant by the words “house of God”? Every house on earth belongs to God, however, we do not call bars or brothels “houses of God” but we do call houses of worship “houses of God.” The true meaning is that God is showing favor upon this house by associating it with His name. God bestows such titles upon those whom He wishes to bestow His favor upon from among His creation by virtue of the piety and worship which is displayed to God in association with this creation. It was the selfless dedication and piety of Jesus (pbuh) towards his Creator which was rewarded by God by associating Jesus’ spirit with His name.

In a similar manner, the reference to Jesus being a “word” from God does not mean that Jesus is “part of” God. For example, in many places in the Bible God refers tp His “word.” We can see this for example: “Aaron shall be gathered unto his people: for he shall not enter into the land which I have given unto the children of Israel, because ye rebelled against my word at the water of Meribah.” [Numbers 20:24] Does “my word” here mean “Jesus”? There are numerous other examples.

1.2.3.9 Because he was called “Lord”?:

Was Jesus God because people addressed him as “my lord.” Not according to the Bible. In the Bible we find that this was a common practice with many others besides Jesus. For example:

Prophet Abraham: “Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure, my lord (Abraham) being old also?” [Genesis 18:12]

Esau: “And he commanded them, saying, Thus shall ye speak unto my lord Esau; Thy servant Jacob saith thus, I have sojourned with Laban, and stayed there until now:” [Genesis 32:4]

Joseph: “And we said unto my lord, We have a father, an old man, and a child of his old age, a little one; and his brother is dead, and he alone is left of his mother, and his father loveth him.” [Genesis 44:20]

David: “And fell at his feet, and said, Upon me, my lord, [upon] me [let this] iniquity [be]: and let thine handmaid, I pray thee, speak in thine audience, and hear the words of thine handmaid.” [1 Samuel 25:24]

1.2.3.10 Because God “gave His only begotten Son..”?:

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” [John 3:16]

The above is the King James “translation” of John 3:16. If we were to open up the Revised Standard Version of the Bible on this exact same verse we would find it now translated as “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only son, ….” What is going on here? The RSV is the work of thirty two Biblical Christian scholars of the highest eminence backed by fifty cooperating Christian denominations. They produced the RSV in an effort to correct the “many” and “serious” errors they had found in the King James Bible. So why have they scrapped the word “begotten” from this cornerstone of Christian preaching? The reason is because they have decided to be honest with us when translating this verse.

The Greek term for “begotten” in ancient Greek is “gennao” {ghen-nah’-o} as found for example in Matthew 1:2. In the verses under consideration, however, the word used was not “gennao” but “monogenes” {mon-og-en-ace’}. “Monogenes” is a Greek word which conveys the meaning “unique” and not “begotten.” Thus, the true translation of this verse is “His unique son.” Some of the more honest translations of the Bibles, such as the New Testament by Goodspeed and J. M. Powis Smith (published in 1923) have indeed given the same translation as that of the RSV. However, such “tell it as it is” Bibles were not generally met with a lot of enthusiasm since they forced the reader to face the fact that much of what the translators of the KJV have “translated” for them was not in fact part of the Bible.

We have already seen in previous sections that the Bible bears witness that God has “sons” by the tons. So what does the Bible mean by “only son” or “unique son” when referring to Jesus? It means what the Bible has told us and the Qur’an has confirmed for us, namely, that Jesus was “unique” in that he was born of a human mother without a father. God merely said to him “Be!” and he was.

1.2.3.11 What about “Unto us a child is born”?:

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” [Isaiah 9:6] When someone reads this verse of Isaiah they immediately see a clear prophesy of God coming to earth in the form on a human child. Is this not what the verse says? Does it not say that Jesus shall be the “incarnation” of God on earth? Actually, it does not. Let us study it together.

Firstly, it is important when applying a prophesy to someone to not selectively pick and choose catch phrases from the prophesy and disregard the rest. In this prophesy we find that the very first stipulation presented for this person is that he shall carry the government upon his shoulders. However, as is popular knowledge, Jesus (pbuh) never in his whole lifetime ever formed a government nor became a head of state. In fact we find him saying in the Bible quite explicitly: “Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence.” [John 18:36] and “Then saith he (Jesus) unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which are Caesar’s; and unto God the things that are God’s.” [Matthew 22:21]

So according to the Bible, Jesus never tried to establish a government nor to challenge the authority of the pagan emperor Caesar over himself and his followers. Now, if someone were to go the extra mile and to make the case that Jesus commands a “spiritual” government in the hereafter, then we need to know whether the hereafter shall be a place of governments, kings, laws and regulations?

Secondly, when we study the words “mighty God” carefully, we notice an interesting fact. For some reason, the words used are not “Almighty God” but rather “mighty God.” Naturally, this makes one curious as to what the original Hebrew text actually says. So we decide to study it.

The word for “Almighty” as applied exclusively to God in the OT is the Hebrew word “Shadday” {shad-dah’-ee}. However, this is not the word used in this verse. The actual word used in this verse is the Hebrew word “Gibbowr” meaning “mighty” and not “The Almighty.” Now, although to us such a difference might seem subtle and insignificant, still, to the Jews, the difference was quite pronounced. Let me elaborate.

In the famous Hebrew and Chaldee Dictionary by James Strong the word “gibbowr” or short “gibbowr” {ghib-bore’}, is translated as; warrior, tyrant:-champion, chief, excel, giant, man, mighty (man, one), strong (man), valiant man. On the other hand the word “Shadday” {shad-dah’-ee}, is translated as, the Almighty:-Almighty.

The word translated as “God” here is the Hebrew word “El” {ale} which in addition to its use to refer to God Almighty in the Bible is also used to refer to mighty men, to demons, to angels, and to idols. As we have already seen in the previous section, it was a common practice in the Bible to use the word “god” to convey an air of authority or power. Some of the examples presented were: “I have said, Ye (the Jews) are gods; and all of you are children of the most High” [Psalms 82:6] and “And the LORD said unto Moses, See, I have made thee a god to Pharaoh” [Exodus 7:1] as well as “the god of this world (the Devil) hath blinded the minds of them which believe not.” [2 Corinthians 4:4]

When reading such verses we begin to understand the reason why Isaiah 9:6 refers to a “mighty god” and not an “Almighty God.” If the author did indeed mean to convey that this person would be the “incarnation” of God Almighty who would come down to earth in the form of a human being in order to walk among us and die on the cross, then why did this author chose to “water down” his statement by only referring to him with the generic term used for humans, demons, idols, and angels, and not the specific term reserved for God Almighty alone?

And finally, we study the term “everlasting father.” In the Bible, the term “everlasting” or “forever” is often used as a figurative term and does not necessarily convey its literal sense, for example, “And my servant David [shall be] their prince forever.” Ezekiel 37:25. and “The king shall joy in thy strength, O LORD … He asked life of thee, [and] thou gavest [it] him, [even] length of days for ever and ever.” Psalm 21:1-4 ..etc.

The same goes for the use of the term “father”. It does not necessarily mean; “the Heavenly Father” (God), or the biological father. Let us read for example: Joseph is called a father to Pharaoh. Genesis 45:8, and Job is called the father of the needy. Job 29:16. ..etc.

So, just as king David shall be an “everlasting prince” so too shall this person be called an “everlasting father.” This is the language of the Jews. This is how it was meant to be understood. We can not simply interpret a verses in a vacuum of the culture, customs, and verbal constructs of the people who wrote them. We must always be careful when “translating” such verses to make sure that we translate them as they were intended by the author and as his people had come to understand them.

I am sure that the people of this age would be quite upset if one of them were to write to their closest friend “you are an angel and a prince” and then centuries later a Japanese speaking person were to say: “See? The author has just born witness that his friend is a divine creature with wings that came down to earth and became royalty. He says so very clearly right here!”

Well is all of this only my own personal attempt to pervert the verses and manipulate their meanings? Far from it. Many Christian scholars have known and recognized the true meaning of this verse and translated it into English accordingly, however, their translations were not met with a whole lot of enthusiasm and thus, they did not receive the same degree of publicity as has such translations as the King James Version. For example, Mr. J. M. Powis Smith in “The Complete Bible, an American Translation,” quotes this same verse as follows: “For a child is born to us, a son is given to us; And the government will be upon his shoulder; And his name will be called ‘Wonderful counselor is God Almighty, Father forever, Prince of peace'” [“The Complete Bible, an American Translation,” Isaiah 9:6]

And again, if we were to read the translation of another Christian, for example Dr. James Moffatt, we would find that in his translation “The Holy Bible Containing the Old and New Testaments” the verse reads: “For a child has been born to us, a child has been given to us; the royal dignity he wears, and this the title he bears – ‘A wonder of a counselor, a divine hero, a father for all time, a peaceful prince'” [“The Holy Bible Containing the Old and New Testaments” Isaiah 9:6 ]

1.2.3.12 How did Jesus’ people know him?:

So if the followers of Jesus (pbuh) considered God to be their “Father,” then how did they regard Jesus? To answer this let us read together:

“And when he would have put him to death, he feared the multitude, because they counted him as a prophet.” [Matthew 14:5 (compare with Matthew 21:26)]

“And the multitude said, This is Jesus the prophet of Nazareth of Galilee.” [Matthew 21:11]

“But when they sought to lay hands on him, they feared the multitude, because they took him for a prophet.” [Matthew 21:46]

“And he said unto them, What things? And they said unto him, Concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people:” [Luke 24:19]

“The woman saith unto him, Sir, I perceive that thou art a prophet.” [John 4:19]

“Then those men, when they had seen the miracle that Jesus did, said, This is of a truth that prophet that should come into the world.” [John 6:14]

“Many of the people therefore, when they heard this saying, said, Of a truth this is the Prophet.” [John 7:40]

“And there came a fear on all: and they glorified God, saying, That a great prophet is risen up among us; and, That God hath visited his people.” [Luke 7:16]

“They say unto the blind man again, What sayest thou of him, that he hath opened thine eyes? He said, He is a prophet.” [John 9:17]

Indeed, how did Jesus himself describe himself? Let us read: “Nevertheless I (Jesus) must walk to day, and to morrow, and the [day] following: for it cannot be that a prophet perish out of Jerusalem.” [Luke 13:33]

And they were offended in him. But Jesus said unto them, A prophet is not without honour, save in his own country, and in his own house. Matthew 13:57, Mark 6:4, Luke 4:24, John 4:43

This is once again confirmed in the noble Qur’an: “And when Jesus son of Mary said: O Children of Israel! Verily! I am the messenger of Allah unto you, confirming that which was [revealed] before me in the Torah” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Saf(61):6]

1.2.3.13 Is God a man?:

In the Bible we read, “God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should repent: hath he said, and shall he not do it? or hath he spoken, and shall he not make it good?” [Numbers 23:19]

1.2.3.14 Does God pray to Himself?:

Now, does God pray? Let us read the Bible:

“And he (Jesus) saith to his disciples, Sit ye here, while I shall pray.” [Mark 14:32 ]

“Now when all the people were baptized, it came to pass, that Jesus also being baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened.” [Luke 3:21:]

“And it came to pass in those days, that he went out into a mountain to pray, and continued all night in prayer to God.” [Luke 6:12:]

“And being in an agony he prayed more earnestly: and his sweat was as it were great drops of blood falling down to the ground.” [Luke 22:44]

“And he went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.” [Matthew 26:39:]

“Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;” [Hebrews 5:7]

All of these verses do not speak of Jesus (pbuh) “meditating,” “interceding,” “consorting,” or “consulting,” but PRAYING. But to whom? To Himself? To another side of his own personality? Is Jesus not “the same essence” as God, and all are one Trinity? If Jesus and God are not “the same essence” then this means that there is more than one God in existence, and thus, we have just directly opposed verse, after verse, after explicit verse of the Bible, all of which emphasize that there ever was, and ever shall be, only one God.

Further, Jesus (pbuh) and his disciples are continuously being described in the Bible as “falling on their faces and praying” which is exactly the way Muslims pray today (see section 5.6). They pray the way Jesus (pbuh) did. Have you ever seen a Christian “fall on his face” and pray to God as Jesus (pbuh), Muhammad (pbuh), and all Muslims do?

Mr. Tom Harpur says: “In fact, unless we are prepared to believe that his prayer-dependence on God was nothing more than a sham for our edification, a mere act to set us a good example, it is impossible to cling to the orthodox teaching that Jesus was really God Himself walking about in human form, the Second Person of the Trinity. The concept of God praying – let alone praying to Himself – is incomprehensible to me. To say that it was simply the human side of Jesus talking to God the Father (rather than his own divine nature as Son of God) is to posit a kind of schizophrenia that is incompatible with any belief in Jesus’ full humanity” [For Christ’s Sake, pp. 42-43.]

Think about it, when we are told that Jesus was in the garden earnestly begging and pleading with God to please please save him saying “let this cup pass from me” and “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” etc., then: Was this all just a stage play for our benefit? If not, then since there is only ONE God, and Jesus and God are ONE God, then was Jesus praying to himself? Why?

God has given us the answer in the Qur’an over 1400 years ago. He says: “And from those who said: “We are Christians,” We took their covenant, but they forgot a good part of the message which was sent to them. Therefore We have stirred up enmity and hatred among them till the Day of Resurrection, and Allah will inform them of what they used to do. O people of the Scripture! Now has Our messenger (Muhammad) come to you, explaining to you much of that which you used to hide in the Scripture, and forgiving much. Indeed, there has come to you a light from Allah and a plain Scripture. Wherewith Allah guides him who seeks His good pleasure unto paths of peace. He brings them out of darkness by His will into light, and guides them to a straight path. They indeed have disbelieved who say: Lo! Allah is the Messiah, son of Mary. Say : Who then has the least power against Allah, if He had willed to destroy the Messiah son of Mary, and his mother and everyone on earth? And to Allah belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them. He creates what He will. And Allah is Able to do all things. The Jews and Christians say: We are sons of Allah and His loved ones. Say; Why then does He punish you for your sins? No, you are but mortals of His creating. He forgives whom He will, and punishes whom He will. And to Allah belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them, and unto Him is the return (of all). O people of the Scripture! Now has Our messenger (Muhammad) come unto you to make things plain after a break in (the series of) the messengers, lest you should say: There came not unto us a messenger of cheer nor any Warner. Now has a messenger of cheer and a Warner come unto you. And Allah is Able to do all things.” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Maidah(5):14-19 ]

1.2.3.15 Jesus is God’s servant:

All of mankind are the servants of God. If a man were to own another man then that man would be his servant. Obviously this servant would be held in a lower regard than this man’s own children (or himself). We do not usually find people telling their sons (or themselves): “come here my servant,” or “Go over there my servant.” Let us compare this with what God has to say about Jesus (pbuh):

“Behold my servant, whom I have chosen.” [Matthew 12:18:]

“The God of Abraham, and of Isaac,…. hath glorified his servant Jesus.” [Acts 3:13(RSV):]

“For of a truth against thy holy servant Jesus, whom thou hast anointed….” [Acts 4:27(RSV)]

The Actual Greek word used is “pias” or “paida” which mean; “servant, child, son, manservant.” Some translations of the Bible, such as the popular King James Version, have translated this word as “Son” when it is attributed to Jesus (pbuh) and “servant” for most everyone else, while more recent translations of the Bible such as the Revised Standard Version (RSV) now honestly translate it as “servant.” As we shall see in later chapters, the RSV was compiled by thirty two Biblical scholars of the highest eminence, backed by 50 cooperating Christian denominations from the “most” ancient Biblical manuscripts available to them today. Chances are that no matter what your church or denomination you are able to name, that church took part in the correction of the King James Version of the Bible which resulted in the RSV.

This fact is indeed confirmed by Jesus in both the Bible as well as the Qur’an where in both places he bears witness that, like all faithful Muslims, he is but a servant of God. He says: “For I have not spoken of myself; but the Father which sent me, he gave me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak. And I know that his commandment is life everlasting: whatsoever I speak therefore, even as the Father said unto me, so I speak.” [John 12:49-50](Also see John 8:28-29)

In the noble Qur’an we read: “The Messiah will never scorn to be a servant of Allah, nor will the favored angels. Whosoever scorns His service and is proud, all such will He assemble unto Him; Then as for those who believed and did good works, unto them will he pay their wages in full and shall increase them from His bounty. [But] as for those who were scornful and proud, He shall punish hem with a painful torment, nor will they find for themselves other than Allah any ally or champion” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Nissa(4):172-174]

The exact same word “pias” is attributed to Jacob(Israel) in Luke 1:54 and translated as “servant”: “He hath helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy;.”

It is also applied to King David in Luke 1:69, and once again, it is translated as “servant”: “….the house of his servant David;” (also see Acts 4:25).

However, when it is applied to Jesus (e.g. Acts 3:13, Acts 4:27), NOW it is translated as “Son.” (notice that it is not only translated as “son” but as “Son”.) Why the double standard? Why the dishonest translation techniques?

“And verily, among them is a party who twist their tongues with the Scripture that you might think that it is from the Scripture but it is not from the Scripture; and they say, “It is from Allah’ but it is not from Allah; and they speak a lie against Allah while [well] they know it!” [The noble Qur’an, A’al-Umran(3):78]

1.2.3.16 Does God have a God?:

In John 20:17 we read: “Jesus saith unto her, …I ascend unto my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.” [John 20:17] Not only is God Jesus’ father, but He is also his GOD. Think about this carefully. Also notice how Jesus is equating between himself and mankind in these matters and not between himself and God. He is making it as clear as he possibly can that he is one of US and not a god. Why did he not just say “I ascend unto my Father, and your Father .” … and stop !?

Why did Jesus feel it necessary to add the words “…and to my God, and your God.” What additional information was he trying to convey to us with these extra words? Think about it carefully.

Please also read 2 Corinthians 11:31, Ephesians 1:3, Ephesians 1:17, and 1 Peter 1:3 for similar affirmations of Jesus having a God.

“Surly they have disbelieved who say: “Allah is the Messiah, son of Mary.’ But the Messiah said: “O Children of Israel! Worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord.’ Verily, whosoever sets up partners in worship with Allah then Allah has forbidden Paradise upon him, and his abode is the Fire. And for the unjust there are no allys” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Maidah(5):72]

1.2.3.17 Is God greater than Himself?:

Okay, If Jesus and God are two distinct gods and one is greater than the other (“my Father is greater than I” John 14:28) then this contradicts such verses as Isaiah 43:10-11 and the very definition of the “Trinity” (see section 2.2.5) which includes the words: “..Co-equality..” in its definition (see section 2.2.8).

However, if they are not two separate gods, but ONE god, as claimed by all Trinitarians (like Mr. J), then is Jesus (pbuh) praying to himself? Is, for instance, his mind praying to his soul? Why?

1.2.3.18 More to think about:

“Verily I (Jesus) say unto you, Among them that are born of women there hath not risen a greater than John the Baptist.” [Matthew 11:11] even Jesus? Jesus (pbuh) was born of a woman.

“How then can man be justified with God? or how can he be clean that is born of a woman?” [Job 25:4:] Once again, Jesus (pbuh) was born of a woman. Shall we now apply this to him? Not as far as Muslims are concerned.

1.2.3.19 Was God ignorant and savage?:

The Bible describes Jesus (pbuh) as follows: “And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man” [Luke 2:52] and “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered.” [Hebrews 5:8 ]

If Jesus is God and they are not two separate gods, then did God start out as an ignorant and savage god and then become a learned (wisdom) and prestigious (stature) god? Does God have to learn? Does God start out savage and increase in stature? Does God need to learn obedience to God? Does God increase in favor with Himself? If there is only one God in existence, and this god is a “Trinity” with three faces: God, Jesus, and the Holy Ghost (required by Isaiah 43:10-11 and countless other verses), then is Jesus (pbuh) learning obedience to another side of his own personality?

If, as we are constantly told, God Jesus and the Holy Ghost are ONE God, and if God surrendered some of His godly attributes and became man, then did He also surrender His knowledge and become ignorant, and His stature and become savage? Did He have to rebuild His knowledge and His stature from scratch? This also brings up another interesting question. If Jesus (pbuh) can change from one state to another and thus increase in (a)wisdom, (b) stature, (c) favor with God, and (d) favor with mankind, then this means that he can in no way be God, since one of the characteristics of God Almighty is that He does not change in any way, shape or form: “For I [am] the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.” [Malachi 3:6]

But what else can we learn from the Bible? Let us read: “The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree. Him hath God exalted with his right hand [to be] a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.” [Acts 5:30] If Jesus (pbuh) were God, then would it be an “exaltation” for him to be made a “prince” or a “savior”? Is God “exalting” himself from being “merely” God to the lofty new hights of “prince” and “savior”?

Mr. Tom Harpur says: “In fact, if you read Mark’s whole Gospel carefully you will discover that the disciples were far from recognizing the divinity later attributed to Jesus. The very ones who should have been most able to see through the “disguise’ are at times depicted as dull-witted and even downright stupid….Some scholars, indeed, have calculated that Mark deliberately showed the disciples in a rather bad light because he was conscious of a serious problem. If Jesus was the Son of God in the later; more orthodox sense, how was it that his closest associates – the witnesses of his miracles and the confidants of his deepest teachings – never knew who he was until well after the resurrection?” [For Christ’s Sake, pp. 59.]

Remember, most Christian scholars today recognize that the authors of the Gospels of Matthew and Luke used the “Gospel of Mark” as the source document from which they obtained their material.

The authors of the Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible have the following to say regarding the Gospel of Luke: “..the evangelist’s use of Mark is beyond question. It is one of the principle sources, and is generally held to provide the framework for his gospel… Luke uses Mark with a high degree of fidelity to his source, despite additions and changes. They justify hesitation when elsewhere in the gospel commentators find it necessary to describe Luke’s narratives as “editorial’ or as a “radical revision of Mark’..” [Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible, Vol. 3, p. 184, Abingdon Press.]

The same authors of the Interpreter’s Dictionary go on to say the following regarding the Gospel of Matthew: “..Matthew is the first of the gospels, in the traditional order. But this is not necessarily the chronological order, and there is good reason for thinking that Matthew was one of the later gospels, rather than the first. Tradition has maintained its early date, and the location of Matthew as the first book of the NT has in turn supported the tradition, at least has maintained its wide acceptance in popular thought. But in the first place it is quite certain that Matthew is later than Mark, upon which, like Luke, it is based …So far as internal evidence goes, it is only a general probability that the order of the gospels was Mark, Matthew, Luke, John. But this literary probability is confirmed archeologically..” [Interpreter’s Dictionary of the Bible, Vol. 3, p. 302, Abingdon Press.]

In Grolier’s encyclopedia, under the heading “Mark, Gospel According to”, we read: “Mark is the second Gospel in the New Testament of the Bible. It is the earliest and the shortest of the four Gospels. …Much material in Mark is repeated in Matthew and in Luke, leading most scholars to conclude that Mark was written first and used independently by the other writers” [Grolier’s encyclopedia]

Well, what then is the Islamic perspective on all of this? Islam teaches that God does not need to lower Himself in order to display His love and mercy for humanity, rather, He retains His glory, majesty and sovereignty and then raises humanity: “Allah will exalt those who have believed from among you, and those who have been granted knowledge, to high ranks. And Allah is Well-Acquainted with what you do.” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Mujadila(58):11 ] and “Whosoever desires honor, power and glory, then [let them know that] to Allah belongs all honor, power and glory. To Him ascends the good word, and the righteous deed does raise it; but those who plot iniquities, theirs will be an awful doom; and the plotting of such (folk) will come to naught.” [The noble Qur’an, Fatir(35):10]

1.2.3.20 But he must be God, or else we can not be saved: But the Church will tell us that it is necessary for Jesus (pbuh) to be the son of God and to die on the cross as an ultimate sacrifice in atonement for the original sin, otherwise they are all destined for hell. As Paul taught them “without shedding of blood is no remission.” Hebrews 9:22. Let us study Paul’s claim: If the sin of one man can make all mankind sinners as claimed in Romans 5:12, then:

1) This requires that all babies are sinners from birth and are only saved if they later “accept the sacrifice of their Lord and are baptized.” All others remain stained with the original sin and destined for destruction. Till recently, unbaptized infants were not buried in consecrated ground because they were believed to have died in original sin. Saint Augustine himself is quoted as saying: “No one is clean, not even if his life be only for a day” [A dictionary of Biblical tradition in English literature, p.577).]

This, however, contradicts the words of Jesus himself, “But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven.” [Matthew 19:14 (also Mark 10:14, and Luke 18:16). ]

So Jesus (pbuh) himself is telling us that children are born without sin and are destined for heaven without qualification. In other words, no one is born stained with an original sin. Once again, the teachings of Islam. Islam teaches that you are destined for salvation from your very birth. This will be your reward unless you refuse this gift and insist on disobeying God. 2) All the many millennia of previous prophets (Moses, Abraham, Jacob, Noah, …etc.) and their people are all condemned to never receive true salvation simply because Jesus, the alleged “Son of God,” arrived to late to save them. In other words, they have sin forced upon them (by Adam, 1 Corinthians 15:22) and the chance for redemption withheld from them (By Jesus’ late arrival after their death, Galatians 2:16). Paul says, “Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam’s transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come.” [Romans 5:14]

“For if Abraham were justified by works, he hath reason to boast; but not before God.” [Romans 4:2] If Jesus had only arrived as soon as Adam committed his sin and not thousands of generations later then maybe all of these generations could have received true salvation (like this generation).

Did Abraham or any of the other prophets ever preach the “crucifixion”? Did they preach the “Trinity”? I am asking for clear and decisive words and not personal forced interpretations of their words or “hidden meanings” for their words. If you are not sure then why not ask the Jews who we are told faultlessly transmitted two thirds of the Bible to us? Have any of them ever worshipped a Trinity? Many people do not bother to think about this. As long as they are going to heaven, what does it matter what happens to others?

3) What right did the prophets of God have to deceive their people and tell them that they would receive eternal salvation and expiation from their sins if they but kept the commandments? What right did they have to teach them all of these commandments and the observance of the Sabbath and other hardships if all of their works were worthless and belief in Jesus’ sacrifice which would not occur till many thousands of years after their death was the only way to salvation, or as Paul put it: “A man is not justified by the works of the law … for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified..” [Galatians 2:16.]

4) Explain Ezekiel 18:19-20 “Yet do you say: Why shouldn’t the son bear the iniquity of the father? When the son hath done that which is lawful and right, and hath kept all my statutes, and hath done them, he shall surely live. The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him..” This verse was revealed long before the birth of Paul and his claims of “original sin” and “redemption.” It clearly states that all mankind are not held accountable by God Almighty for the sin of Adam.

“The fathers shall not be put to death for the children, neither shall the children be put to death for the fathers: every man shall be put to death for his own sin..” [Deuteronomy 24:16 ]

“In those days they shall say no more, The fathers have eaten a sour grape, and the children’s teeth are set on edge. But every one shall die for his own iniquity: every man that eateth the sour grape, his teeth shall be set on edge.” [Jeremiah 31:29-30]

“The word of the LORD came unto me again, saying, What mean ye, that ye use this proverb concerning the land of Israel, saying, The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge? As I live, saith the Lord GOD, ye shall not have occasion any more to use this proverb in Israel. Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die. But if a man be just, and do that which is lawful and right, And hath not eaten upon the mountains, neither hath lifted up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, neither hath defiled his neighbor’s wife, neither hath come near to a menstruous woman, And hath not oppressed any, but hath restored to the debtor his pledge, hath spoiled none by violence, hath given his bread to the hungry, and hath covered the naked with a garment; He that hath not given forth upon usury, neither hath taken any increase, that hath withdrawn his hand from iniquity, hath executed true judgment between man and man, Hath walked in my statutes, and hath kept my judgments, to deal truly; he is just, he shall surely live, saith the Lord God” [Ezekiel 18:1-9]

“Who is a God like unto thee, that pardoneth iniquity, and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of his heritage? he retaineth not his anger for ever, because he delighteth in mercy.” [Micah 7:18: ]

“So ye shall not pollute the land wherein ye [are]: for blood it defileth the land: and the land cannot be cleansed of the blood that is shed therein, but by the blood of him that shed it.” [Numbers 35:33 ]

5) Isaiah 43:11 “I, even I, am the LORD; and beside me there is no savior.” How is Jesus the savior if God Himself denies this? Remember, we have already discarded the doctrine of “Trinity.”

“I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me,” [Isaiah 46:9]

“the LORD he is God; there is none else beside him,” [Deuteronomy 4:35]

“See now that I, even I, am he, and there is no god with me,” [Deuteronomy 32:39]

“That all the people of the earth may know that the LORD is God, and that there is none else,” [1 Kings 8:60]

“Is there a God beside me? yea, there is no God; I know not any,” [Isaiah 44:8]

“I am the LORD, and there is none else, there is no God beside me: I girded thee, though thou hast not known me,” [Isaiah 45:5]

“and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Savior; there is none beside me,” [Isaiah 45:21]

“I am God, and there is none else.” [Isaiah 45:22:]

6) “Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.” John 14:23.

“If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.” [John 15:10.]

So what were Jesus’ words to us?: “And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And he said unto him, Why callest thou mt if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments. He saith unto him, Which? Jesus said, Thou shalt do no murder, Thou shalt not commit adultery, Thou shalt not steal, Thou shalt not bear false witness. Honor thy father and [thy] mother: and, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself The young man saith unto him, All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet? Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go [and] sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come [and] follow me.” [Matthew 19:16-21.]

Jesus (pbuh) refutes that he is even “good.” This is a characteristic of a MAN. When you compliment a man, and this man is humble, he will say: “why are you complimenting me? I am not so good, I am just a humble man.” This is how good and decent men speak. It is how they display humility before God. However, if Jesus (pbuh) is God then he must claim to be good. This is because God is the source of ultimate good. If God claims not to be good then he will be a hypocrite and a liar which is impossible.

Jesus then goes on to completely bypass any mention of an original sin or an atonement. He does not tell this man that “a man is not justified by the works of the law … for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified..” Rather, he tells him that the keeping of the commandments and the selling of one’s belongings is the path to perfection. No mention of an original sin. No mention of an atonement. No mention of a crucifixion. No mention of faith without work. As we have seen in sections 1.2.5 through 1.2.7 (and we shall see much more of this in later sections), all of these beliefs were the beliefs of Paul and not Jesus.

Paul, a disciple of Jesus’ disciple Barnabas, is quoted to have said that the law of Moses is worthless. Belief in the crucifixion is the only requirement. “Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified” [Galatians 2:16]

Also: “Therefore we conclude that a man is justified by faith without the deeds of the law.” [Romans 3:28] and “In that he saith, A new covenant, he hath made the first old. Now that which decayeth and waxeth old is ready to vanish away” [Hebrews 8:13.] and “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned.” [Mark 16:16]

Please compare the above with: “The law of the LORD [is] perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD [is] sure, making wise the simple.” [Psalm 19:7 ]

Jesus (pbuh), however, tells us that, “For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” [Matthew 5:18-19.]

Confirmed in Luke: “And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail.” [Luke 16:17]

Even James emphasizes that: “What [doth it] profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be [ye] warmed and filled; notwithstanding ye give them not those things which are needful to the body; what [doth it] profit? Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble. But wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Seest thou how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which saith, Abraham believed God, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of God. Ye see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only. Likewise also was not Rahab the harlot justified by works, when she had received the messengers, and had sent [them] out another way? For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.” [James 2:14-20]

It comes down to this: Who’s words carry more weight with us, Jesus or Paul? Jesus and James both say “have faith in God and obey the commandments and you shall be saved.” Paul on the other hand says “Forget the commandments, just have faith in the death of Jesus!” So who do we trust, Jesus or Paul?

When God Almighty sent down the Noble Qur’an in order to “bear witness” over the previous scriptures and to “rectify” the changes which have crept into them over the ages, He also provided us with the path to salvation. Strangely enough, in the Qur’an we find a confirmation of the message of both Jesus and James: “And whosoever does of the righteous good deeds, be they male or female, and has faith, such will enter Paradise and shall not be wronged even so much as a “Naqeer'(the speck on the back of a date stone)” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Nissa(4):124]

“And whosoever works deed of righteousness and has faith, then he shall fear no injustice nor any curtailment [of his reward].” [The noble Qur’an, Ta’ha(20):112]

“Verily, those who believed and did righteous deeds, they are the best of creatures” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Bayyinah(98):7]

“[God swears] by all time!. Verily, humanity is in loss. Except such as had faith, and did righteous deeds, and encouraged one-another in truth, and encouraged one-another in patience.” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Asr(103):1-3]

Jesus (pbuh) himself never said “Believe in my sacrifice on the cross and you will be saved.” He didn’t tell this young man “You are filthy wicked and sinful and can never enter heaven except through my redeeming blood and your belief in my sacrifice.” He simply said repeatedly “keep the commandments” and nothing more. If Jesus (pbuh) was being prepared and conditioned for this sacrifice from the beginning of time, then why did he not mention it to this man? Even when this man pressed him for more, Jesus only told him that to be “PERFECT” he only needs to sell his belongings. He made no mention whatsoever of his crucifixion, an original sin, or a redemption. Would this not be quite sadistic of Jesus (pbuh) if Paul’s claims are true “for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified”? We do not know when or how this young man later died. However, supposing he died the very next day, right after receiving this command directly from the mouth of Jesus, would he then be destined for Hell since he never believed in a Trinity, an original sin, a crucifixion or an atonement even though he was following the command of Jesus to the letter?

If Jesus’ (pbuh) whole mission in life was to die on the cross in atonement for the “sin of Adam,” and if this was the founding reason why he was sent, would we not be justified in expecting him to spend night and day drumming this into the minds of his followers? Should we not expect him to speak of nothing else? Should we not expect him to spend night and day preaching that the commandments shall soon be thrown out the window (Galatians 3:13) and faith in his upcoming crucifixion shall be the only thing required of them? (Romans 3:28). Should we not expect Jesus (pbuh) to echo the teachings of Paul who never in his life met Jesus but claims Jesus (pbuh) was preaching these things to him in “visions”? Should we not expect Jesus (pbuh) to tell everyone he meets “The commandments are worthless. I shall be dying on the cross soon. Believe in my sacrifice and you shall be saved”? Is this not dictated by plain simple logic? Can we find such an explicit statement from Jesus anywhere in the whole Bible?

7) We read in the Bible that Jesus (pbuh) taught his followers to pray to God as follows: “..And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.” [Matthew 6:12. ] and “And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us.” [Luke 11:4]

Jesus is asking us to pray to God that He forgive our sins. But how does he want God to forgive our sins? By a blood sacrifices of a sinless god? No!. That is not what he said. Rather, he taught us to ask God to forgive us “as we forgive those who are indebted to us.” Therefore one must ask, if someone owes us money and we want to forgive them, what do we do?:

Do we say “I forgive you your debt … now pay up!”? Do we say “I forgive you your debt … now I shall kill your neighbor” Or do we say “I forgive you,” and forget the matter?

Therefore, did Jesus teach us to pray to God that He should: Say “All of mankind is forgiven … now pay an ultimate price”? Or, to say “All of mankind is forgiven … now I need to kill someone who is sinless”? Or, to say “All of mankind is forgiven” and that is it !?

In the Qur’an we are told that Adam (pbuh) did indeed repent, “And Adam received from his Lord words (teaching him how to repent) and He relented toward him. Lo! He is the Relenting the Merciful” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Bakarah(2):37] So Adam (pbuh) received a revelation from God showing him how to repent and he did so. God Almighty did not mandate a gruesome and torturous death for “His only begotten son” or anything else. He simply accepted Adam’s repentance and relented. This is true mercy.

Tom Harpur, a former professor of New Testament, author of “For Christ’s Sake,” and an Anglican Minister writes; “Perhaps I am lacking in piety or some basic instinct, but I know I am not alone in finding the idea of Jesus’ death as atonement for the sins of all humanity on one level bewildering and on the other morally repugnant. Jesus never to my knowledge said anything to indicate that forgiveness from God could only be granted “after’ or “because of’ the cross.” [For Christ’s Sake, p.75 ]

“Whosoever follows [true] guidance, then he is guided only to his own [benefit]. And whosoever follows misguidance, then he is misguided only to his own [hurt]. No laden [soul] can carry the burden of another. And We never punish until we have sent a messenger.” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Israa(17):15]

“And no bearer of burdens shall bear the burdens of others, and if one heavily laden [soul] calls another to [bear] its burden none of it shall be lifted, even were he to be of near kin. You (O Muhammad) can warn only those who who fear their Lord unseen and establish the prayer. And he who purifies himself then he purifies only [for the benefit of] his ownself. And to Allah is the return of all.” [The noble Qur’an, Fatir(35):18]

“Did you see the one who turned away? And gave a little and [then] withheld? Does he have knowledge of the unseen so that he sees? Or was he not informed of what is in the pages (Scriptures) of Moses, and Abraham who fulfilled. That no burden [soul] shall bear the burden (sin) of another. And that the human shall have nothing but what he [himself] did. And that his deeds will be seen. Then he will be recompensed the fullest of recompensation. And that to your Lord is the end [of all]. And that it is He who causes to laugh, and He who causes to weep. And that He brings death and gives life.” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Najm(53):33-44]

1.2.3.21 But he must be God, he was lifted up:

A Christian gentleman from Canada once quoted John 3:14-15 in an attempt to prove that Jesus (pbuh) died and was resurrected. The actual words are: “And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: That whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have eternal life..”

If we are to conclude that the act of God raising someone up is a sign that that person is a god or God Himself then we need to wonder how we shall then interpret the fact that God also raised Elijah (2 Kings 2:11) and Enoch (Genesis 5:24) neither of which, according to the Bible and the consensus of the Christian scholars, died natural deaths but were instead “raised up” or “taken” by God because of their piety, uprightness, and their “walking with God.”

Further, anyone who would simply read the above verses carefully will notice that they never mention either a “crucifixion” or a “resurrection.” They also do not mention an “original sin” or an “atonement.” They do not even mention a “Son of God.” So, what do they say? They say exactly what Muslims say: That Jesus (pbuh) was not forsaken by God to the Jews, but was raised by God!

“And because of their saying (in boast): We killed the Messiah Jesus, son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah, but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but a similitude was shown to them, and those who differ therein are full of doubts. They have no (certain) knowledge, except the following of conjecture. For surely; they killed him not. But Allah raised him up unto Himself, and Allah is All-Powerful, All-Wise” [The noble Qur’an, Al-Nissa(4):157-158.] This is what the “Gospel of Barnabas” says too. If you were to read the Gospel of Barnabas (see chapter 7), you would find that when Jesus (pbuh) was allegedly crucified, all of the faithful were weeping in the streets and they began to have serious doubts about his truthfulness and his true prophethood. They said “Jesus told us that he would not die until just before the end of time. Now he has been crucified by his enemies. Was he a liar?” (by the way, Muslims also believe that Jesus, pbuh, will return to earth just before the end of time and will guide mankind to the final message of God. The message of Islam). The same Gospel then goes on to describe how Jesus (pbuh) returned a few days later with four angels to the house of his mother Mary (pbuh) and was seen by the apostles. He described how God had saved him from the hands of the Jews, and had made it so that Judas resembled him and was taken in his place. He told them that those who believe in him must believe that everything he had preached to them was true. If they believed that he was raised by God and not forsaken to the Jews to be crucified, then they would have eternal life. Is this not what the verses say? Please read sections 5.10, 5.16 and chapter 7.

1.2.3.22 But he must be God, he was the heir of God’s glory:

Some members of the Church will then tell us that Jesus was the “heir” of God and was “glorified by God” upon his death with the eternal glory and majesty of God. To try and prove this point they then quote such verses as: Hath in these last days spoken unto us by [his] Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds; [Hebrews 1:2] or “And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was.”[John 17:5]

They will tell us “surely you must see that this makes Jesus God, and thus, they must be joined in a trinity. You would have to be blind to not see this clear fact” What these clergymen do not bother to tell us is that the Bible also says: “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with [him], that we may be also glorified together.” [Romans 8:16-17] and “By whom also we have access by faith into this grace wherein we stand, and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.” [Romans 5:2] and “For both he that sanctifieth and they who are sanctified [are] all of one: for which cause he (Jesus) is not ashamed to call them (the believers) brethren,” [Hebrews 2:11]

1.2.3.23 But he must be God, he was crucified for blasphemy:

Some members of the Church, in an attempt to prove that Jesus (pbuh) was God would quote for example John 10, as seen in sections 1.2.2.7 and 1.2.3.2, in an attempt to prove that Jesus was God and that this is the very reason why the Jews crucified him. However, as seen in that section, he never said what they claimed and this was not the real reason why they so dearly wanted to kill him. It was only one of many excuses they had tried to come up with in order to mask their true reasons and justify before the masses a conviction of death. The real reason was that he was the Messiah that God had promised them and they did not want a Messiah who would come and rebuke them telling them that they were wrong, misguided, full of corruption and needed to mend they ways before God took vengeance upon them, rather, they wanted a Messiah who would come and tell them what wonderful and pious elect children of God they are were and then to lead them into an ultimate all-conquering victory over all of nations of the earth. So they rejected him, just as six centuries later they would also reject the “second Messiah” they were promised and whom they would travel to the barren deserts of Arabia to await (see chapters 6, 7 and 10 ). We read the confirmation of this in the Bible:

“His parents said this because they were afraid of the Jews; for the Jews had already agreed that anyone who confessed that Jesus was the Messiah would be put out of the synagogue.” [(RSV) John 9:22]

“Now some of the people of Jerusalem were saying: “Is not this the man whom they are trying to kill? And here he is speaking openly but they say nothing to him!. Can it be that the authorities really know that this is the Messiah?'” [(RSV)John 7:25-26]

“Whosoever desires honor, power and glory, then [let them know that] to Allah belongs all honor, power and glory. To Him ascends the good word, and the righteous deed does raise it; but those who plot iniquities, theirs will be an awful doom; and the plotting of such (folk) will come to naught.” [The noble Qur’an, Fatir(35):10]

“Do not think that Allah is unaware of that which the unjust do. He but gives them respite until the day when [their] eyes shall stare in horror. [They will be] hastening forward, their heads raised up [towards the sky], their gaze returning not to them, and their hearts empty (out of terror). And warn mankind of the Day when the torment will come unto them; then the unjust will say: “Our Lord! Respite us for a little while, we will answer Your call and follow the messengers!’ (It will be said): “Had you not sworn aforetime that you would not leave [the world for the Hearafter]? And you dwelt in the dwellings of those who wronged themselves, and it was clear to you how We had dealt with them and we put forth many parables for you.’ Indeed they plotted their plot and with Allah is their plot, though their plot were such that [if it were possible] it would remove the mountains ” [The noble Qur’an, Ibraheem(14):42-46]

“So when Jesus became conscious of their disbelief, he said: “Who will be my helpers in the cause of Allah?’ The disciples said: “We will be the helpers of Allah; we believe in Allah and bear witness that we have surrendered unto Him (Literally: “we are Muslims’). Our Lord, we believe in what you have sent down, and we follow the Messenger, so write us down among those who bear witness.’ And they (the disbelievers) plotted and Allah plotted, and Allah is the best of plotters. When Allah said: “O Jesus! I will take you and raise you to Myself and purify you of those who disbelieved, and I will make those who follow you [on true Monotheism which you preached to them] above those who disbelieved until the Day of Resurrection, then you will all return unto Me and I will judge between you in the matters in which you used to dispute” [The nobel Qur’an, A’al-Umran(3):52-54]

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JESUS AND MUHAMMAD IN THE BIBLE AND THE QURAN

Biblical evidence of Jesus being a servant of God and having no share in Divinity

By Dr. M. Taqi-ud-Din al-Hilali, Ph.D.

Professor of Islamic Faith and Teachings, Islamic University, Al-Madina

(Rendered into English by Adam M. Makda)

INTRODUCTION

All praise be to the One to Whom all Dignity, Honor and Glory are due; the Unique with perfect attributes, Who begets not, nor is He begotten. He has no equal but He is the Almighty, Omnipotent. He sent His Messengers and Prophets to guide humanity towards monotheism; to worship Him Alone, the only One Worthy of worship, and to warn them of the eternal dire consequences of polytheism; associating partners with One Allah and the worship of creatures.

Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon all the Prophets and Messengers, especially on Muhammad, the last of the Prophets, and on all who follow him in righteousness until the Day of Recompense.

CHRISTIANITY: MEN WITHOUT RELIGION

ISLAM: RELIGION WITHOUT MEN

A Muslim never lacks proofs about the purity and truthfulness of his religion, but what he lacks are those truthful brothers who stand for Allah and His Prophet SAW testifying to the truth. Indeed, in this age, Islam is a religion without men (custodians and propagators) whereas Christianity is men without a religion; yet, by their endeavor, adventurous spirit, patience and monetary contributions they are able to falsify truth and make falsehood appear true. In this materialistic age most of humanity have become slaves to wealth, fashions, and mansions.

There is none worthy of worship but Allah and in Him (Alone) do I put my trust, and towards Him am I destined.

JESUS AND THE DEVIL IN THE BIBLE

In the New Testament of the Bible, in the fourth chapter of the Gospel according to Matthew, the sixth and seventh verses clearly indicate that Jesus is an obedient mortal and God is the Master and Lord according to his saying in the seventh verse:

“It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord, thy God.”

In this chapter we read that the Devil actually carried the Messiah, and took him from place to place. How can the Devil carry God? Glory be to Allah; He is above such blasphemy!

Then the Devil orders him to prostrate before him and worship him, even tempting him with worldly possessions. How can the Devil even dare such an audacity with God? When the Devil wanted Jesus to comply with his orders, he (Jesus) replied by saying that it was written (in the previous Books):

“Thou shalt worship the Lord, thy God; And Him only shalt thou serve.” Matthew 4:10.

CHILDREN OF GOD

Jesus never called himself Son of God as far as I know but he used to call himself the ‘Son of Man’ (ref. Mark 2:10) although he heard himself being called by that name he did not object as assumed in the Bible and did not consider the title exclusively for him.

According to the Biblical term in the Old and New Testaments, every God- fearing righteous person is called ‘Son of God’. In Matthew 5:9 we read:

“Blessed are the peace-makers, for they shall be called the children of God.”

In Matthew 5:45 –

“That ye may be children of your Father which is in heaven…”

GOD THE FATHER

In Matthew 5:48 –

“Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.”

In Matthew 6:1 –

“… otherwise ye have no reward of your Father which is in heaven.”

Matthew 7:21 –

“Not every one that sayeth unto me (Jesus), Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven: but he that doeth the will of my Father, which is in heaven.”

N.B. The word ‘Lord’ here was translated as Rabb in the Arabic version of the Bible so that people may be convinced that Jesus is God! But if one studies the rest of the verse, one will note that the verse bears testimony to the subservience (to God’s Will) of the Messiah (Jesus). Therefore the correct translation should be:

“Not every one that sayeth to me, O my Master, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.”

It is obvious from the above readings from the Bible that the term ‘Father’ is used for God in numerous places in the Bible. It is never used exclusively for the Messiah (Jesus).

Matthew 11:25 –

“At that time Jesus answered and said, ‘I thank Thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because Thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent and has revealed them unto babes.'”

JESUS THE WORSHIPPER

Matthew 14:23 –

“And when he had sent the multitudes away, he went up into a mountain apart to pray…..”

I say: If he (Jesus) is God or a part of God then why did he pray? In fact, prayer is always from a submitting, needy and dependent one for the Mercy of Almighty Allah as mentioned in the Quran. (V. 35:15):- “O mankind! it is you who stand in need of Allah but Allah is Rich (Free of all wants and needs), Worthy of all praise” (35:15).

And in (V. 19:93) of Quran: “There is none in the heavens and the earth but comes unto the Most Beneficent (Allah) as a slave.”

A BIBLICAL STORY

Matthew 15:22-28 –

“And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts and cried unto him, saying, ‘Have mercy on me, O Lord, thou son of David: my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil.’ But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying; ‘Send her away, for she crieth after us.’ But he answered and said, ‘I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.’ Then came she and worshipped him, saying, ‘Lord, help me.’ But he answered and said, ‘It is not meet to take the children’s bread and to cast it to dogs.’ And she said, ‘Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.’ Then Jesus answered and said unto her, ‘O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.’ ”

In this story about a woman from Canaan there are noteworthy points:

(1) Lack of mercy and love charged against Jesus (if the incident is reported correctly).

(2) Degraded discrimination in regard to the uplifting of his tribe and not for the others.

(3) Tribal pride of descendance and prejudice against others and calling them dogs.

(4) An ignorant polytheist woman debated with him and won him over.

JESUS: A PROPHET OF ALLAH.

Matthew 19:16-17 –

“And behold, one came and said unto him, ‘Good master, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?’ And he said unto him, ‘Why callest thou me good? (There is) none good but one, (i.e.) God, but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.’ ”

In the above verses we note this acknowledgment of his submissiveness (to Allah’s Will).

Matthew 21:45-46 –

“And when the chief priests and pharisees had heard his parable, they perceived that he spoke of them. But when they sought to lay hands on him, they feared the multitude because they took him for a Prophet.”

Here it is proved that all those who believed in Jesus during his life-time did not believe in him being God or the Son of God or one in the doctrine of Trinity; but they believed in him as being a Prophet only. This is indeed one of the strongest points of evidence against those who believe in the Divinity of Jesus (Incarnation of God) if only they pondered.

JESUS: A SERVANT OF ALLAH.

Matthew 23:8 – ‘But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your master, even Jesus,

and all ye are brethen.”

Here it is clearly proved that Jesus was servant of Allah, and that there is only One Master and He is Allah. In the Arabic version of the Bible this verse has been translated so that Jesus is meant to be the master whereas the English rendering is nearer the original sense.

Matthew 23:9 –

“And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father which is in heaven.”

From this you will note that fatherhood and sonship is meant to be the relationship between the Lord and His servants: it is meant in a general sense and not specifically for Jesus.

Matthew 24:36 –

“But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.”

This is a definite proof that the Final Hour is unknown to any but Allah, thus Jesus’ knowledge is imperfect like all other men; Allah Alone is All-Knowing, Omniscient.

Matthew 26:39 –

“And he (Jesus) went a little farther, and fell on his face and prayed, saying, ‘O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as Thou wilt.’ ”

We note here that the person speaking is unaware of Allah’s Will and realizes the fact that he is a servant of Allah. He (Allah) Alone can cause the change.

THE COMPILATION OF THE BIBLE

Matthew 27:7-8 –

“And they took counsel and bought with them the potter’s field to bury strangers in. Wherefore that field was called the Field of Blood, unto this day.”

From these verses we understand that the Bible (the New Testament) was not written during Jesus’ life-time but long after the occurrence of the events described, having been retained in the memory of the people.

Matthew 27:46 –

“And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, ‘Eli,Eli, lama sabachthani? (My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?’)”

This is according to their (Christians’) assumption that Jesus cried in a loud voice saying the above words while he was being crucified. This is a great insult as such words could only come from unbelievers in Allah. Further, it is incredible that such words should come out from a Prophet of Allah because Allah never breaks His Promise and His Prophets never complained against His Promise.

JESUS: PREACHER OF MONOTHEISM (TAUHID)

In John 17:3 –

“And this is life eternal, that they might know thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom thou has sent.”

In Mark 12:28-30 –

“And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, ‘Which is the first commandment of all?’ And Jesus answered him: ‘The first of all the commandments is; hear O Israel, the Lord thy God is One Lord: and thou shalt love the Lord, thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.’ ”

In Mark 12:32 –

“And the scribe said unto him, ‘Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is One God; and there is none other but He.’ ”

In Mark 12:34 –

“…he (Jesus) said unto him, ‘Thou art not far from the kingdom of God…’ ”

In these verses, Jesus (peace be upon him) himself had testified that Allah is the One God, there is none other than Him, and that whoever believes in His Oneness, he is near the Kingdom of Allah. Therefore whoever associates partners with Allah or believes in the Trinity is far away from the Kingdom of Allah, and whoever is far away from the Kingdom of Allah he is the enemy of Allah.

In Matthew 24:36 –

“But of that day and hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels of the heaven, but my Father only.”

I say: A similar text was quoted from S.Matthew which is exactly as proclaimed by the Qur’?n in that none knows when the Hour will come except Allah. This establishes the fact that Jesus was subservient to Allah and that he had no share in Divinity: that he was an incarnation of God, was an innovation by the people of Canaan.

In John 20:16 –

“Jesus said unto her, ‘Mary’. She turned herself, and sayeth unto him, ‘Rabboni’, which is to say, Master, Jesus saith unto her, ‘Touch me not: For I am not yet ascended to my Father; but go to my brethren, and say unto them, I ascend unto my Father and your Father; and to my God and your God.’ Mary Magdalene came and told the disciples that she has seen the Lord, and that He had spoken these things unto her.”

In the above narrative Jesus clearly testified that Allah is his God and their God, making no difference between him and them in the worship of the One Allah. Whoever believes that Jesus is God has indeed blasphemed against Allah and betrayed the Messiah (Jesus) and all the Prophets and Messengers of Allah.

BIBLICAL PROPHECY ON THE ADVENT OF MUHAMMAD (peace be upon him SAW)

John 14:15-16 –

“If you love me, keep my commandments. And I will pray the Father and He shall give you another Comforter that he may abide with you forever.”

Muslim theologians have said that “another Comforter” is Muhammad, the Messenger of Allah; and him to “abide forever” means the perpetuity of his laws and way of life (Sharia’) and the Book (Qur’?n) which was rreviewed to him.

John 15:26-27 –

“But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me: And ye also shall bear witness, because ye have been with me from the beginning.”

John 16:5-8 –

“But now I go my way to Him that sent me and none of you asketh me ‘Whither goest thou?’ But because I have said these things unto you, sorrow hath filled your heart. Nevertheless I tell you the truth; for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and approve righteousness and judgment.”

John 16:12-14 –

“I have yet many things to say unto you, but you cannot bear them now. How be it when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak; and he will shew you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and he shall shew it unto you.”

John 16:16 –

“A little while and ye shall not see me: and again a little while, ye shall see me, because I go to the Father.”

Muslim theologians have stated that the person who is described by Jesus to come after him in the above verses does not comply with any other person but Muhammad SAW the Messenger of Allah. This ‘person’ whom Jesus prophesied will come after him is called in the Bible ‘Parqaleeta’ This word was deleted by later interpreters and translators and changed at times to ‘Spirit of Truth’, and at other times, to ‘Comforter’ and sometimes to ‘Holy Spirit’. The original word is Greek and its meaning is ‘one whom people praise exceedingly.’ The sense of the word is applicable to the word ‘Muhammad’ (in Arabic).

FINALITY ON PROOFS ON THE FABRICATION OF THE STORY OF THE CROSS

(1) The Bible testifies to the fact that Jesus was known among the Jews; he used to preach and deliver sermons in the Temple of Solomon in Jerusalem. It was therefore, unnecessary to hire a Jew for thirty pieces of silver to direct them to him as related in S. Matthew.

(2) It is related that one of the twelve disciples named Judas Iscariot was hired to direct the Jews to Jesus. They then sentenced him after which Judas was greatly ashamed and dissociated himself from their act and then committed suicide. All this took place within twenty four hours. The contradictions are obvious.

(3) The clearest proof which alone is sufficient to discredit this story is when the Jews passed the sentence of death against Jesus and intended to get the approval of the governor, Pontious Pilate.

Matthew 27:11-14 –

‘And Jesus stood before the governor: The governor asked him, saying, ‘Art thou the king of the Jews!’ And Jesus said unto him, ‘Thou sayeth (sayest)’: And when he was accused of (by) the chief priests and elders. He answered nothing. Then said Pilate unto him, ‘Hearest thou not how many things they witness against thee?’ And he answered him never (to) a word…”

The Christians will interpret the above verse to mean that Jesus wanted to die on the Cross for the redemption of mankind and for the forgiveness of their sins: if so, then why did he ask to turn away that cup from him (i.e. death)? Why did he cry out while on the Cross (as they assume): “O Lord, why hast thou forsaken me?” How could he have remained silent when the truth was being challenged? He was known for his soul-inspiring sermons challenging the learned Jewish Rabbis. No sane person can believe in this. If the story of the Cross is disproved then the very foundation on which Christianity is based, will be demolished.

Muslims believe that Jesus was not crucified by the Jews as revealed in the Holy Qur’?n by Allah in a crystal clear manner: V. 4:157,158.-

“And because of their saying (in boast): ‘We killed Messiah Jesus, son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah’; – but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but the resemblance of Jesus was put over another man (and they killed that man), and those who differ therein are full of doubts. They have no (certain) knowledge, they follow nothing but conjecture. For surely, they killed him not (i.e., Jesus, son of Mary). But Allah raised him (Jesus) up (with his body and soul) unto Himself (and he alai-hiss-salaam is in the heavens).. And Allah is Ever All-Powerful, All-Wise.”

The Jews themselves, together with the entire Christian world, believe that he was crucified. As proofs against their views and to prove the truth of the Muslim verdict through the Bible, I prepared the following set of questions based on the Book of S. Matthew in the New Testament of Bible. (Chapters 26 and 27):

(1) Did those who captured Jesus (according to their assumption) know him in person? or did they not know him?

S. Matthew testifies that they did not know him.

(2) Was it during the day or night that he was captured?

S.Matthew says it was during the night.

(3) Who was the one that directed them to him?

S. Matthew says: He was one of his twelve disciples called Judas lscariot.

(4) Did he direct them free of charge or for a fixed reward which they specified, for him?

S. Matthew says: He directed them to him for a fixed reward of thirty pieces of silver.

(5) What was the condition of Jesus during that night?

S. Matthew says: He was fearful and prostrated in prayer saying: “O God, if it is possible for You to let this cup pass from me, then let it pass.” It is incredible that such words could come from a believer in God, let alone a Prophet of God, because all believers believe that God has power over all things.

(6) What was the condition of his eleven disciples?

S. Matthew says: Sleep overcame them that night together with their teacher (according to their assumption) out of fear.

(7) Was Jesus contented with their condition?

S. Matthew says (verses 40-46): He was not satisfied. He used to come to them to wake them up saying: “Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation; the spirit indeed is willing but the flesh is weak.” Then he would come again to find them asleep and he would again wake them up and say the same thing. This weakness could not have been spoken of righteous pupils even if they were pupils of an ordinary pious teacher, let alone the disciples of Jesus, son of Mary.

(8) Did they help him when those ruffians captured him?

S. Matthew says: They forsook him and fled.

(9) Did Jesus have confidence in his disciples that night?

S. Matthew says: Jesus informed them that they will all forsake him. Then Jesus said unto them: “Verily I say unto thee that this night before the cock crows, thou shall deny me thrice.” Peter said unto him, “Although I should die with thee, yet will I not deny thee.” Likewise also said all the disciples. And so it happened.

(10) How did those ruffians capture him?

S. Matthew says: They came to him with swords and staves after they were directed to him by a Jew, then they captured him as described in verse 57:

“And they that had laid hold on Jesus, led him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the elders were assembled.”

There they passed the sentence of death on him. The ruffians then took him away, spat on his face and struck him with their hands after which they stripped him of his clothes and clad him in scarlet robes, then placed a crown of thorns on his head and took him about, teasing and mocking him. They said to him: ‘You are the king of Israel according to your claim.’ They severely degraded him.

(11) Who finally decided to pass the death sentence against him?

S. Matthew says: He was Pontious Pilate, a Greek Roman, who was at that time the governor of Palestine.

(12) When the ruffians brought that man before the governor and informed him that the priest of the Jews passed the sentence of death by crucifixion according to their law (Torah), did he believe in them without investigation?

S. Matthew says: He did not believe them but asked that man: “Is it true what they have said?” He remained silent. The question was repeated and he continued to remain silent. He remained silent in view of the truth; it was essential for him even if he was not a Prophet to clarify the truth and deny the false accusation of the Jews. The governor’s wife went to the governor and she said to him: “Have thou nothing to do with that just man? for I have suffered many things this day in a dream because of him.”

The Bible states that Jesus delivered lengthy speeches to the Jews rebuking and warning them which amounted to defaming them. Then why was he silent that day? The governor’s intention for asking him was to stand for the truth.

(13) How was he crucified according to their assumption?

S. Matthew says: They crucified him between two thieves both of whom abused him by saying to him, “If you are truthful then save yourself.”

(14) This was a great calamity. What did he say while on the cross (according to their assumption)?

S. Matthew says (27:46):

Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, Iama sabachthani? (that is to say,) my God, my God, why has Thou forsaken me?”

This is a blatant declaration of disbelief according to all theological authorities. Whoever relates it to a Prophet is a disbeliever according to the revealed religions.

Almighty Allah, in the Qur’?n warns, the Jews and the Christians against their blasphemy; that Jesus is an incarnation of God (Allah) or the son of God (Allah) or in rejecting him totally; and that they must believe in him as a Messenger of Allah only:

“And there is none of the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), but must believe in him (Jesus, son of Mary, as only a Messenger of Allah and a human being), before his (Jesus alai-hiss-salaam or a Jew’s or a Christian’s) death (at the time of the appearance of the angel of death). And on the Day of Resurrection, he (Jesus) will be a witness against them.” (V.4:159).

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THE TRUE FOUNDER OF CHRISTIANITY: PAUL

Author Unknown

We know that the true message from Eesa alayhi salaam (Jesus) was not kept on record nor was told to that by him himself. It wasn’t until about 150 years later did the Christian Theologians thought it possible that they must have some type of recognition and recollection of and during his time. They took it upon themselves to compile from their findings and hearsay, to record on their own accord, data at that time.

Dr. Maurice Bucaille, the famous French scholar, who reverted to Islam, says the following about Paul. “Paul is the most controversial figure of Christianity he was considered to be a traitor to Jesus’ thought by the latter’s family and by apostles who had stayed in Jerusalem in the circle around James. Paul created Christianity at the expense of those whom Jesus had gathered around him to spread his teachings.” (Taken from the Bible, the Quran and the Science)

The Encyclopedia Britannica describes Paul in the following paragraph. “One group among the writers, represented for example by W. Wrede, who were by no means opposed to Paul, opine that Paul changed Christianity to such an extent that he has become its second founder. In reality he is the founder of that ‘Church Christianity’ which is totally different from the Christianity brought by Jesus. They say that ‘Follow Jesus or follow Paul, but both cannot be followed simultaneously.”

The teachings of Paul are different from the teachings of “The synoptic gospels”…meaning Matthew, Mark, Luke and the Gospel According to John is even doubted by the Christian Scholars. The teachings in the synoptic gospels contradict Paul’s message.

The teachings of Paul were taught after the ascension of Eesa alayhi salaam (Jesus). Some of his teachings include the following:

1. The concept of making Jesus as the son of God.

2. The concept that Jesus died on the cross to wash eternal sins from Adam downwards, through his blood.

3. The concept of the Torah was renounced. He eliminated the laws and regulations concerning food and abrogated the injunctions of circumcision.

The real followers of Eesa alayhi salaam and his message opposed these concepts of Paul’s message. These conceptions were very appealing to the Gentiles and they were gullible and easily ready to accept Paul’s teachings. The true believers were unable to stop the misguidance.

In 325 C.E., a council of Christian leaders met at Nicea and made official Paul’s beliefs as their religion. They took a vote. The Roman Empire declared Paul’s religion as the religion of the state and all books which denied this belief were banned. In 367 C.E. the state announced a list of books that were accepted and fifteen years later, a council under the Presidency of Pope Damiasius, gave his approval to these books. At the end of the fifth century, Pope Galasius published a list of unauthorized boo ks (APOCRYPHAL) to further conform to Paul’s message of Christianity.

We all know that Eesa alayhi salaam (Jesus), never taught or used the word Christianity. The message of Eesa alayhi salaam was to bring the people back to the correct message of Ibraheem alayhi salaam and Mosa alayhi salaam, and that was teaching pure Monotheism. He brought nothing new. After the disappearance of Eesa alayhi salaam, Paul took over and used his belief in saying that believing in Jesus was enough for salvation. The Jewish scholars called followers of Eesa alayhi salaam, the misguided sect of Nazarene or Galilaens.< /o:p>

When Paul and Barnabas went to Antioch to preach, they were ridiculed and called Christians by the many. The ones who were called Christians felt that if they are being given a name in reference to Jesus, there is nothing wrong in accepting it. (An example of this could be people calling Muslims Mohammadedans and they accept it as such, which is incorrect).

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JESUS IN ISLAM

Source: http://www.salafitalk.net/st/

It is from amongst the articles of faith in Islaam to believe in all of the Messengers of God. God Almighty informs us that He sent many Messengers and Prophets, mentioning twenty-five of them in the Holy Qur’aan. God the Most High said: “And Indeed We have sent Messengers before you (O Muhammad): of some of them We have related to you their story. And of some We have not related to you their story, and it was not given to any Messenger that he should bring a sign except by the leave of Allaah.” [40:78]

And from these twenty-five noble Messengers who have been mentioned is Jesus, the son of Mary.

The Status of Jesus in Islaam

Jesus is regarded in Islaam as one of the greatest Messengers of God. He is among the Messengers who received Divine Books and suffered much hardship and adversity in the way of delivering the message of God Most High: to single out God Alone in worship. God said in the Qur’aan: “And verily , We have sent among every nation a Messenger (proclaiming): ‘Worship God Alone and avoid all false deities.’” [16:36]

Jesus – peace be upon him- was one of the five Messengers of strong will and resolve mentioned in the Glorious Qur’aan: Ibraaheem (Abraham), Nuh (Noah), Moosaa (Moses), ‘Eesaa (Jesus), and His final Messenger Muhammad – may peace and blessings be upon all of them. All of these illustrious Messengers came with this same noble invitation: Worship God Alone, without any partners, and obey His Messenger. Likewise, they all faced opposition and hardships from their people due to this call.

Jesus (Peace be upon him) in Islaam

His Mother:

It should be mentioned that God not only speaks highly of Jesus in the Noble Qur’aan, but He also speaks highly of his mother, Mary. When Mary was born, her mother prayed that God would grant her daughter protection, dedicating her to the Creator, to worship Him Alone and b e obedient to Him. God, the Mighty and Majestic, accepted her supplication and He placed her under the protection of His servant Zakariyyaa (Zachariah), the father of John the Baptist. God said: “(Remember) when the wife of ‘Imraan said: ‘O my Lord! I have vowed to You what (the child that) is in my womb to be dedicated for Your services, so accept this from me. Verily, You are as-Samee’ (The All-Hearer), al-‘Aleem (The All-Knowing).’ Then when she gave birth to her child [Maryam (Mary)], she said: ‘O my Lord! I have given birth to a female child,’ – and Allaah knew better what she brought forth, – ‘And the male is not like the female, and I have named her Maryam (Mary), and I seek refuge with You for her and for her offspring from Shaytaan (Satan), the outcast.’ So her Lord accepted her with goodly acceptance. He made her grow in a good manner and put her under the care of Zakariyyaa.” [3:35-37]

His Birth:

Mary had withdrawn herself in seclusion from her family when God sent to her the archangel Gabriel (Jibreel). Gabriel appeared to her in the form of a man, proclaiming to her: “’I am only a Messenger from your Lord, (to announce) to you the gift of a righteous son.’ She said: ‘How can I have a son when no man has touched me, nor am I unchaste?’ [19:19-20] The Angel replied: “’So it will be, your Lord said: ‘That is easy for Me (God): And (We wish) to appoint him as a sign to mankind and a mercy from Us (God), and it is a matter (already) decreed (By God).’ So she conceived him, and she withdrew with him to a far away place (i.e. Bethlehem valley).” [19: 21-22] After giving birth to her baby, Jesus, she carried him to her people. After seeing Mary with her baby, they perceived that she had done something shameful: “O Mary! Indeed you have brought a mighty and strange thing. O sister of Aaron! Your father was not a man who used to commit adultery, n or was your mother an unchaste woman.” [19:27-28] So faced with the accusations of having committed a shameful act by her people, Mary pointed to the baby in her arms. Then the first of Jesus’ many miracles took place: “Then she pointed to him (the baby, Jesus). They said: ‘How can we talk to one who is a child in the cradle?’ He (Jesus) said: ‘Verily I am a slave of God, He has given me the Scripture and made me a Prophet; And He has made me blessed wheresoever I may be, and has enjoined on me prayer, and Zakaat (charity), as long as I live. And dutiful to my mother, and did not make me arrogant, unblest. And Salaam (peace) be upon me the day I was born, and the day that I die, and the day I shall be raised alive!’” [19:29-33]

And we should mention that the Power which caused Jesus to be born miracuously to a virgin mother without a father is the same Power which created Adam without a father nor a mother. “Verily the likeness of Jesus before God is like the likeness of Adam. He (God) created him from dust and then said to him “Be!” and he was. (This is) the truth from your Lord, so be not of those who doubt.” [3:59-60]

His Message:

Jesus’ message, as we mentioned previously, was the same message that all of God’s Prophets and Messengers came with: the worship of the One true God Alone, without associating any partners with Him in that worship. God said: “And worship Allaah (Alone), and do not join with Him any partners” [4:36]

And He says: “Verily, Allaah does not forgive that any partners should be set up with Him in worship, but He forgives what is other than that for whomever He pleases.” [4:48] So this is the pristine message which all of the Prophets and Messengers called to, singling out God the Most High in worship. And this is the message of Islaam and the foundation upon which it is built. Therefore, as Muslims, we hold that all of the Prophets a nd Messengers were themselves “Muslims”, as Islaam means submission and surrender to God Alone, singling Him out in worship. And a muslim is one who submits and surrenders himself to God Alone and worships and obeys Him. The respective names of the message that these noble Messengers came with may have differed, but the message itself was one and the same. We find Jesus himself commanding his people, the Children of Israel, to worship God Alone. God said: “And will make him [Jesus] a Messenger to the Children of Israel (saying): ‘I have come to you with a sign from your Lord, that I design for you out of clay, a figure like that of a bird, and breathe into it and it becomes a bird by God’s Leave; and I heal him who was born blind, and the leper, and I bring the dead to life by Allaah’s Leave. And I inform you of what you eat, and what you store in your houses. Surely, therein is a sign for you, if you believe. & nbsp;And I have come confirming that which was before me of the Torah, and to make lawful to you part of what was forbidden to you, and I have come to you with a proof from your Lord. So fear God and obey me. Truly, Allaah (God) is my Lord and your Lord, so worship Him (Alone). This is the Straight Path.” [3:49-51]

And God says in the Qur’aan: “And (remember) when Allaah will say (on the Day of Resurrection): ‘O Jesus, son of Mary! Did you say unto mankind: “Worship me and my mother as two gods besides Allaah (God)?”’ He will say: ‘Glory be to You! ….Never did I say to them except that which You (God) commanded me to say: ‘Worship God, my Lord and your Lord.’” [5:116-117]

Similiarly, we find in the Bible Jesus being asked “Which is the first commandment of all?” He replied, “The first of all the commandments is: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is One…’” [Mark 12:28-29]

Some of The Miracles of Jesus :

Many non-Muslims would be amazed to know that Muslims believe that Jesus, son of Mary, performed some miracles not mentioned in the Bible. One of them, as has preceeded, is his speaking while a baby, defending his mother against the accusations of her people. Another of his miracles that he performed is his calling upon his Lord, the Most High, to send down a maa’idah, or a table spread with food which his disciples ate from as mentioned in Soorah al-Maa’idah, the fifth chapter, verses 112-115. As we have mentioned previously, Allaah said: “And will make him [Jesus] a Messenger to the Children of Israel (saying): ‘I have come to you with a sign from your Lord, that I design for you out of clay, a figure like that of a bird, and breathe into it and it becomes a bird by God’s Leave; and I heal him who was born blind, and the leper, and I bring the dead to life by Allaah’s Leave.” [Soorah an-Nisaa’ (4):49]

So Jesus’ blowi ng life into the figure of bird made of clay, healing those born blind and those suffering from leprosy, and bringing the dead back to life were all miracles, performed by the leave of God. God also mentions: “And I inform you of what you eat, and what you store in your houses.” [Soorah an-Nisaa’ (4):49]

Here, God informed Jesus of the food stuff that the people stored secretly in their homes and ate from as a sign that Allaah is All-Seeing, All-Knowing. Also, Jesus’ being raised up to Allaah and descending before the Last Day are also from amongst his miracles.

Jesus’ Death:

God informs us in the Qur’aan that the Jews made plans to kill His Messenger Jesus due to his call to the Oneness of God and his refutation of their acts of disobedience and defiance towards God, the All Mighty, All Wise. God says: “And they plotted [to kill Jesus], and God planned too. And God is the Best of those who plot.” [Soorah Aal-‘Imraan (3):54]

Then the Jews made their attempt to capture God’s Messenger to kill him. According to Islaam, when they entered the place where Jesus had been staying, the Arch Angel Gabriel informed Jesus of what was about to happen, and Jesus escaped. Then the Most Mighty and Wise raised him up to Himself into the heavens and in a manner known only to Allaah. He said: “And (remember) when God said: ‘O Jesus! I will take you and raise you to Myself and clear you [of the forged statement that he is God’s son] of those who disbelieve, and I will make those who follow you (who worship God Alone) superior to those who disbelieve till the Day of Resurrection. Then you will return to Me and I will judge between you in the matters in which you used to dispute.” [Soorah Aal-‘Imraan (3):55]

And God the Most High explains the truth of what happened: “And because of their (the Jews) saying (in boast), ‘We killed the Messiah Jesus, so of Mary, the Messenger of God,’ – but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but the resemblance of Jesus was put over another man (and they killed that man instead), and those who differ therein are full of doubts. They have no certain knowledge, they follow nothing but conjecture. For surely; they killed him not. But Allaah raised him up unto Himself (into the heavens). And God (Allaah) is Ever All-Powerful, All-Wise.” [Soorah an-Nisaa’ (4):157-158]

So Muslims do not believe that Jesus has died. Rather, Allaah took him up to Himself and He will send him back down before the Last Day to break the crosses and make clear the message that he was sent with. Jesus will fight the Antichrist (Maseeh ad-Dajjaal) and slay him, then the time that God has appointed for Jesus to die will come. Muslims also reject the idea that Jesus, son of Mary, “died for our sins”, as Allaah says: “And whoever does evil or wrongs himself, but afterwards se eks Allaah’s Forgiveness, he will find Allaah Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. And whoever earns a sin, he earns it only against himself. And Allaah is Ever All-Knowing, All-Wise. And whoever earns a fault or a sin and then throws it on to someone innocent, he has indeed burdened himself with falsehood and a manifest sin.” [Soorah an-Nisaa’ (4):110-112]

Conclusion:

Muslims do not believe that God All-Mighty is part of a “trinity” or has a mother, father, nor children. Rather the Muslims believe that God is One and Unique, free from every deficient humanisitic quality, including that of having children, and free from having any partner or associate. He Alone created the heavens and the earth and sustains all that is in them and all that is between them, disposing of the affairs of His creatures without any help from them. So then due to His Uniqueness and Perfection, and His providing for and sustaining us, it is His right upon us to worship Him Alone. God’s last messenger, Muhammad (peace be upon him) is reported to have said: “Whoever testifies that there is nothing worthy of worship in truth except God Alone, Who is without peer or partner, and that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger, and that Jesus is the slave of God, His Messenger, and His Word which He bestowed in Mary and a spirit (created) from Him, and that Paradise and Hell-fire are realities, God will admit him into Paradise, whatever his deeds may be.”

So this is a brief look at Jesus in Islaam. May God guide us all to His Straight Path, the path that all of His Prophets and Messengers called to, and keep our feet firm upon it.

“Say (O Muhammad): ‘O people of the Book: Come to a word that is just between us and you, that we worship none but Allaah (Alone), and that we associate no partners with Him, and that none of us shall take others as a Lord besides Allaah.” [Soorah Aal-‘Imraan (3): 64]

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ELEVATION OR CRUCIFIXION OF JESUS?

By Imam Ibn Kathir

Taken from Stories of the Prophets (© Darussalam)

Source http://www.islaam.com/Article.aspx?id=663

Allah says: “And when Allah said: ‘O Jesus! I will take you and lift you up to Me, and purify you of those who disbelieve, and will make those who followed you above those who disbelieved until the Day of Resurrection. Then to Me shall you all return, and I shall judge between you in that which you dispute.’” (3:54,55)

Then He said in Surat An-Nisa’: “For their breaking the covenant, and their disbelief in Allah ’s Signs, and their slaying the Prophets unjustly, and for their saying: ‘Our hearts are impermeable’. No, but Allah has set a seal upon them for their blasphemy, so little it is what they believe. And for their rejection to the Faith, and for their uttering against Mary a monstrous lie.” (4:155,156) “

And for their saying (in boast): ‘We killed Messiah, Jesus the son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah’; but they killed him not nor crucified him. Only a likeness of that was shown to them. And those who differ therein are full of doubt with no certain knowledge, but only follow mere conjecture, for of a surety they killed him not. But Allah lifted him up to Him, and Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise. And there is none of the people of the Book, but will believe in him before his death, and on the Day of Judgment, he will be a witness against them.” (4:157-159)

These Verses tell us that Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) was lifted up to the heaven after his opponents from Jews complained and misled the king of that time, as they wanted to slay him and crucify him.

Ibn Abu Hatim has narrated from Ibn Abbas saying: “‘When Allah wanted to lift him up to heaven, Jesus came to his companions in the house. There were twelve people, with some from among his disciples. He had just a bath, and his head was still dribbling with water. He said to them: ‘There are those among you who will disbelieve in me twelve times after he had believed in me! Then he said: ‘Who will from among you take my likeness and be killed in my place, so will become in my rank?’ A young youth came forwards. But Jesus said to him: ‘Sit down! Then he repeated the same question, and the same youth stood up and came forwards, and said: ‘I.’ Jesus said: ‘You are the one,’ and then the likeness of Jesus was put on him, and Jesus was lifted up to the heaven from the window of his house.

Jews came looking for him. They took the youth and killed him and then crucified him. Later they became three groups. One group, who are called Jacobites (Yaqubiyah), believe that it was God Himself among them who stayed with them as long as He wanted to, then went back to the heaven. Another group who are called Nestorian (Nasturiyah), believed that it was the son of God who was with them, and stayed among them as long as he wanted, then his father lifted him up. But the group of true believers said that he was the slave of Allah and His Messenger who stayed among them as long as he wanted, then his Lord Allah took him up to Him. The two disbeliever groups collided together against the believer group and killed them, and so real teachings of Islam taught by Jesus became obscure till Allah sent the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).

Hasan Basri and Ibn Ishaq said: The king who ordered the killing of Jesus, was David bin Naura. He commanded Jesus to be killed and hanged. They surrounded Jesus who was in a house inside Bait-ul-Maqdis. It was a Saturday night. When they were about to enter the house, his likeness was put on one of those who were present there with him. And Jesus was lifted up from the window of that house to the heaven. When the police entered the house they found the youth on whom the likeness of Jesus was put, so they took him and crucified him. Even they put a crown of thorns on his head to mock him. Those Christians who were not present there at that time, believed what Jews claimed, that they killed Jesus.

Allah said: “And there is none of the people of the Book, but will believe in him before his death, and on the Day of Judgment, he will be a witness against them.” This refers to the time when Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) will descend to the earth before the Day of Judgment, and kill the swine, break the Cross, impose the levy, and will not be pleased but with Islam.”‘

Ibn Jarir has narrated from Wahb bin Munabbih, saying: Jesus came along with seventeen of his disciples to a house. Then police came and surrounded the house. However, when they entered the house, Allah put the likeness of Jesus on all of those who were there. They were confused, and said: “You have bewitched us. Either Jesus come to us, or we will kill of you.” Jesus said to his companions: “Who can buy today a place in Jannah (Paradise)?” A man said: “I”‘ and went out, claiming: “I am Jesus.” They took him and crucified him, and so they were deluded in their belief that they have killed Jesus, and so are the Christians. But Jesus was lifted up to Allah on that day.

Ibn `Asakir said: Mary lived after Jesus for five years, and then died at the age of fifty-three years.

Hasan Basri said: Jesus was thirty-four years old when he was lifted to the heaven. Sa’id bin Musayyib said: He was thirty-three years old when he was raised up to the heaven.

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