Allah and the Overstaying House Guests

  YHWH's ten commandments were given to the Israelites through Moses. They had been written on stone with the very hand of God (see Exodus 20 and Deuteronomy 5 for the full text of the commandments): 
I. Do not have other gods besides Me. 
II. Do not make idols for yourself. 
III. Do not misuse the name of the Lord your God.
IV. Keep the Sabbath day.  
V. Honor your father and your mother. 
VI. Do not murder. 
VII. Do not commit adultery. 
VIII. Do not steal.
VIIII. Do not give dishonest testimony against your neighbor. 
X. Do not covet.
  These commands were given 3,600 years ago and yet Jews of today can still obey them. This is because they are not time-bound. No matter what their personal circumstances might have been all throughout the centuries, nothing has ever hindered God's People from continuing to keep these commands just as they were recorded more than three millennia ago.

  Now we will take a look at a set of orders in the Quran which were issued to all Muslims. But before we do, we need to point out that Muslims believe the Quran to be the eternal word of Allah. By this they mean that they believe that the Quran was written in eternity past in Jannah (Islamic paradise) before it was sent down to Muhammad by Allah. Muslims believe that every word in the Quran is the eternal word of Allah and emanated only from him with no human intermediaries whatsoever.

  The problem is, for an eternal word written before time began, some of it certainly seems rather impermanent and personal. That is to say it refers to only one person for all of eternity, even though that person has died and can no longer enjoy any of these "perks." Here is one example:

  Surah 33:053 (Khan)  
"O you who believe! Enter not the Prophet's houses, except when leave is given to you for a meal, (and then) not (so early as) to wait for its preparation. But when you are invited, enter, and when you have taken your meal, disperse, without sitting for a talk. Verily, such (behaviour) annoys the Prophet, and he is shy of (asking) you (to go), but Allah is not shy of (telling you) the truth. And when you ask (his wives) for anything you want, ask them from behind a screen, that is purer for your hearts and for their hearts. And it is not (right) for you that you should annoy Allah's Messenger, nor that you should ever marry his wives after him (his death). Verily! With Allah that shall be an enormity."
  While this ayah (verse) may have been perfectly fine and observable in Muhammad's day, how are today's Muslims supposed to obey this law? If the Quran is an eternal book with laws that are supposed to be universally applicable to all mankind as Muslims claim Islam it to be, then it should be applicable to men and women of all times and places.

  Note to whom the command is addressed: "O you who believe!" This means it is addressed to all Muslims. There is no time limit set or definition of which believers in this "eternal word." It is a general command which applies to all Muslims. And so we ask again: how does any Muslim who lived after Muhammad's death in 632AD observe these eternal Quranic commandments? 

  Unfortunately for Muslims beginning with the generation which followed Muhammad's death 1,400 years ago all the way into eternity, none of them have been able to keep nor will any of them ever be able to keep this eternal command from Allah. So we have to ask, why would the eternal word of Allah contain such a time-limited command that would become impossible to follow after the death of Muhammad? Did Allah not anticipate that Muhammad would die someday? This might not have been such a problem had it been included only in the hadith or other Islamic sources because Muslims do not consider these  to be anywhere near the level of the Quran, "the eternal word of Allah." But this verse is from the Quran.

  Secondly, as some might argue, if the intent was to teach Muslims proper social etiquette, then why confine the instruction to their behavior while in their prophet's homes? Homes which, by the way, would be in disarray not long after Muhammad's death due to an internal power struggle which ripped Islam apart and resulted in the deaths of Muhammad's family. But Allah did not generalize the instruction. Instead, he spoke "from eternity past" to deal with Muhammad's shyness and the fact that he did not enjoy having dinner guests. 

  Thirdly, it cannot be denied that a prophet's behavior always reflects on his master and his values. If Muhammad was shy and easily annoyed by company and his Allah hurried to defend him by legislating against any behavior which was irritating to his prophet, then we can only conclude that Allah believes such character traits to be appropriate in his idea of the perfect man. Allah does not personally instruct Muhammad to put his foot down in his own home. Neither does he miraculously heal Muhammad of his shyness. Instead, the objective reader will note that Allah (presumably) saw this time coming, but sought to relieve his prophet of any annoyances by commanding 
all Muslims to avoid doing anything that might irritate his prophet -- once again we note -- from eternity past.

  And finally, in the last portion of Surah 33:53 we read,

  "... And it is not (right) for you that you should annoy Allah's Messenger, nor that you should ever marry his wives after him (his death). Verily! With Allah that shall be an enormity." 

  Ibn Abbas, a Companion of Muhammad, brings us information pertaining to this eternal command:
  ... This verse was revealed about Talhah Ibn 'Ubaydullah who had in mind to marry 'A'ishah after the death of the Prophet (pbuh). (Lo! That) your open declaration and intention to marry the Prophet's wives after his death (in Allah's sight would be an enormity) it is an enormous sin which merits severe punishment." from the Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn ‘Abbâs
  Again, we have to wonder... what would it matter in eternity to the "almighty Allah" whether Aisha remarried or not? Why would Allah consider this such a grievous sin? One can understand why it would matter to Muhammad, but why is Allah apparently unable to see that life would go on for all even after the death of Muhammad?

  And why would Allah be so concerned in his eternal word about issues as petty and temporal as Muhammad's discomfort at overstaying house guests? It would seem that Allah was more interested in Muhammad getting whatever he wanted -- wives, sex slaves, taking his adopted son's wife to be his own, as well as freedom from annoying social behavior -- rather than in the eternal impact these things would have on the soul of his prophet.

  Instead of acting like Muhammad's master, it appears that the roles were reversed, since Allah sought only to serve his prophet. The perceptive words of Muhammad's child bride, Aisha, immediately come to mind:

  "I feel that your Lord hastens in fulfilling your wishes and desires." -- Sahih Bukhari 6:60:311

  She was a sharp one, that Aisha. There was no pulling the wool over her eyes.

  But once again, this Quranic peculiarity stands in stark contrast with the God of the Bible and His true and holy prophets. In the Old Testament, there are a total of 613 commands and laws for the Israelites to keep.

  Not one of them refers to Moses alone, or discusses how one is to behave while at Moses' house for dinner.

  Not one of them protects Moses from discomfort or even assures him of pampering or coddling from the Lord.

Not one of them says, "Thou shalt not annoy Moses." Or any other of God's prophets, His own Son included.

  To the contrary, Jesus, the Perfect Son Who preceded Muhammad by 600 years and Who should have been the one and only example Muhammad should ever have followed, that Prophet Jesus said,

  "For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life—a ransom for many.” Mark 10:45 

  Our Lord Jesus is the polar opposite of Muhammad. 

  Jesus, Who is ever able to overlook our lack of social graces, or our most annoying of habits. 

  He Who, being our loving and forgiving God, will always be ready and willing to dine with us, so to speak, no matter how sinful we might be today. 

  It is this God Jesus Who says,
  "Listen! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and have dinner with him, and he with Me." Revelation 3:20

 See also:

  Guess Who's Coming to Dinner... at Muhammad's House 

  David Wood: Five Reasons the Quran Is Not the Word of God

Top Tips for Muslim Debaters!

  Muslims! Here are some great ways for all of us to save time when you're debating Christians about Jesus, Christianity and the Bible.

  These are listed in no particular order:


  Yes, Jesus does say He is God in the Bible, over and over and over again. Here is just one example:

  "But Yeshua said to him, “I AM THE LIVING GOD, and you shall behold The Son of Man sitting at the right hand of Power and coming on the clouds of Heaven.” Mark 14:62, the Aramaic Bible in Plain English

  We know, we know. You got sold a bill of goods. But don't look at us. We're not the ones following a non-eyewitness self-professing prophet who never did any miracles, never proved that YHWH God had sent him, and who lived 600 years later and 1,200 kilometers away from all the events recorded in the Bible.

  The good news is, our guys in the Bible know exactly what they're talking about, and that's why it's important to read the Bible... so that you're not left out.


  Yes, Jesus is a man. No Christian disputes that. That is the whole point of the Gospel. That's why His coming and His birth were such a big deal for God: He had the prophets saying it was going to happen, the angels singing in the heavens, the virgin birth, the star that guided magi from the East for years, all of that was God saying: 

  "Yoooohooooo! Mankiiiiiiind! I'm sending you My Son to be born as a human being just like you!"

  But Jesus was not a man who became God. He is God Who took the form of man. Here is how John tells it:

 1 In the beginning was the Word,
    and the Word was with God,
    and the Word was God.

 2 He was with God in the beginning.

 3 All things were created through Him,
   and apart from Him not one thing was created

   that has been created.


14 The Word became flesh
     and took up residence among us.
     We observed His glory,
     the glory as the One and Only Son from the Father,
     full of grace and truth. John 1

  We aren't making it up. It's all in the Bible that has never been corrupted. The same one that you guys never read.


  Yes, we know Jesus came as a Servant so no amount of quoting to us from the Book of Acts is going to surprise us. Jesus Himself said, 

  "For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life—a ransom for many.” Mark 10:45 (see also Matthew 20:28 and Isaiah 53)


  No, Christians do not believe in 3 gods. Never have, never will. Christians are Monotheists, meaning we believe in ONE God. But Moses makes it clear in the Torah that God is not a simple unity. Elohim is a plural, not singular, unity. The God of the Bible is complex and impossible for man to comprehend with his finite mind, otherwise He wouldn't be God. 

  As Christian apologist Dr. David Wood says, "If you can understand your god, then he isn't God."


  Before you type, "But your Bible is corrupt!," stop and think for just a moment. Do you actually have any evidence? Any hard facts or solid proof? None! There is no evidence whatsoever of Bible corruption since Christians have manuscripts from hundreds of years before and after Muhammad, and they read the same way our modern Bibles do. 


  Do read your Quran at least once and know your Hadith before coming into a debate group. Nothing is more embarrassing than to have a Christian quote you an ayah or Hadith that you have never read, then you call him a liar and deceiver, only for you to find out that it's in there all right.

  And yes, yes, we know there are hundreds of thousands of Hadith and you could never read them all in a million years but hey, it was your Allah who said he would send you a clear Quran. It's not our fault that it takes hundreds of thousands of Hadith to understand Allah's "clear Quran."


  Don't say, "Islam has all the answers!" Having spent years in these debate groups, Christians already know Islam doesn't have answers. If it did, then there wouldn't be all those unanswered questions posed to you by Christians day in and day out. 


  Don't cherry pick verses from the Bible. It only makes you look like a deceptive schemer when the whole verse is posted in its context by a Christian. Before you post a verse, do read it in its context and determine what is truly being said.

  Atheist and antiChristian websites are not the best places to find proper interpretation of the Scriptures. Read the verse for yourself in its full context and do your own research first.

  This site not only has the Bible in many different translations...

  but it also has several commentaries for the verse that you are reading. Just scroll down towards the bottom of the page to read them.


  No, the word "Trinity" isn't in the Bible, but then neither is the word "tauheed" (or "tawhid," or "tawheed," however you want to spell it.) Even if the word "Trinity" never appears in the Bible, it is a concept that is taught in its pages, just as "tawheed" is taught in the Quran.

  But anyway that's about as silly an argument as "Where is the word Bible in the Bible?" 

  Now that we've covered these tips, we hope that the time we do spend debating can now focus on the things that do need to be discussed, such as:

  What was the Old Testament all about? What, or Who, was it all pointing to? 

  What was the point of all those ceremonies revolving around sacrifice?

  Who is YHWH and how is He different from Allah?

  Why does He love you so much that He would send His Son to die a most cruel death in your behalf?

  Doesn't all that sound so much more interesting? 

  See you in the groups!

  See also:

  Where is the Word Bible in the Bible?

  Where Does Jesus Say "I Am God" in the Aramaic Bible?

  Where Does Jesus Say, "I Am YHWH (God)" in the Bible?

  Comparing the Bible and Quranic Manuscripts

  Where Does the Bible Teach the Trinity?

  A Glimpse of the Trinity in the Old Testament

Praise Be to Me?

  Apart from the grammatical and historical errors and the borrowed stories and words from non-Arabic sources, Muslims have yet another problem with the Quran. This one has to do with the rather odd speaking style employed by "Allah" in the very first chapter (surah) of their book.

  Surah 1 (Khalifa translation) reads:
1 In the name of GOD, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 
2 Praise be to GOD, Lord of the universe. 
3 Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 
4 Master of the Day of Judgment. 
5 You alone we worship; You alone we ask for help. 
6 Guide us in the right path;  
the path of those whom You blessed; not of those who have deserved wrath, nor of the strayers.
  There is no "Thus saith Allah" in the Quran. Muslims believe that the Quran was delivered in a first person style, and so it must be read as though Allah is speaking every word of the Quran. Muslims insist that not one of these words is Muhammad's, and so when we read Surah 1 that way, what Allah is actually saying is: 
1 In the name of me, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 
2 Praise be to me, Lord of the universe. 
3 Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 
4 Master of the Day of Judgment. 
5 I alone do we worship; I alone do we ask for help. 
6 Guide us in the right path; 
7 the path of those whom I blessed; not of those who have deserved wrath, nor of the strayers.
  This is clearly an error that was missed by the Quran's "editor," Uthman, and his team of Quran verse compilers. These were the men who collected the verses that were still around after the loss of much of the Quran from the memorizers of the Quran, or from others who had written them down on anything that was handy, such as stones or animal skin or bones, such as the one in the picture below.

  Faced with the oddly-written Surah 1, Islamic scholars have responded by claiming that this was a literary style that was in use during the time of Muhammad. 

  The problem is, no such style ever existed. 

  That is why no pre-Muhammadan examples can be presented. And so Muslims continue to recite this Surah daily all over the world, with very few seeming to wonder why Allah is speaking so strangely.

  But Muhammad or Uthman and his team of Quran editors and translators could have fixed this problem very easily if they had only added one word. A single word would have fixed the problem.

  To fix the problem with this Islamic prayer, it has been pointed out that one need only add the word, "say." To wit:

      1 Say, 
   In the name of GOD, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 
2 Praise be to GOD, Lord of the universe. 
3 Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 
4 Master of the Day of Judgment. 
5 You alone we worship; You alone we ask for help. 
6 Guide us in the right path; 
7 the path of those whom You blessed; not of those who have deserved wrath, nor of the strayers
  With the added word, Muslims would no longer have their god saying awkward-sounding phrases like, "Praise to Me," and "I alone do we worship." 

  But this should cause Muslims to wonder.

  If Allah was truly almighty, how could he have made this mistake? How is it that human beings can fix Allah's mistake with a single word  that Allah had not thought to place in his "eternal word?"

  The answer is painfully obvious, but only to one who is prepared to face the fact that the Quran was not written by Almighty God but by fallible and sinful men.

  See also:

  The ‘Unsurpassable Eloquence’ of the Qur'an, by Sam Shamoun

  For other problems with the Quran, see also:

  Much of the Quran is Gone!

  A Clear Arabic Quran?  

  Why Did Allah Need to Borrow Material from Jewish Rabbis?

Two Debates Coming Up! Oct 18

Christian apologist 
Anthony Rogers 
of AnsweringIslam


Andrew Livingston
of Taqwa Magazine

October 18

Topic:  Was Mohammad a True Prophet?

Topic:  What Did Jesus Say About Himself?

First Arabic Baptist Church
Phoenix, Arizona

First Arabic Baptist Church
2232 W. Campbell Ave.,
Phoenix, Arizona

Jesus the Source of Power? (Luke 9)

  In the fight between good and evil, only One has all authority: God. 

  Only He has the power and authority to command both demons and angels. When one reads the Gospels, one sees again and again how evil spirits would immediately recognize Jesus as soon as He approached. Along with their recognition came the clear understanding that He had total power over them. Not one of them ever prevailed against Him.

  What's more, Jesus had the authority to assign this power to His followers that they might bring healing and deliverance to others (text in brackets mine):

Luke 9

 1 "Summoning the Twelve, He [Jesus] gave them power and authority over all the demons, and power to heal diseases. 

 2 Then He sent them to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick."

   Now, Muslims say that Jesus could only do miracles because He had the permission of God. But let's read the verse again:

 1 "Summoning the Twelve, He gave them power and authority over all the demons, and power to heal diseases."

  Luke the evangelist doesn't say, "Jesus asked God for permission to give them power and authority over demons."

  He doesn't say, "Jesus prayed and asked the Father to please give the apostles power and authority over demons." 

  No, instead the verse says Jesus Himself gave them power and authority over demons.

  It says Jesus gave them power to heal diseases.

  Nowhere in the New Testament do we find Jesus ever asking God for permission to do miracles, Islamic claims notwithstanding. Jesus didn't have to, because He is one with the Father. Jesus is the Perfect and Obedient Son Who always does as the Father wills.

  Which prophet in the Bible or the Quran had the power over demons that Jesus had?

  Which prophet could heal diseases by his own power, as Jesus did?

  And which prophet had the power and authority to pass on that power and authority to others, as Jesus did?

  We know that Muhammad didn't have any power over demons because he was afraid of them (he knew them as jinns) and constantly seeking to ward off their attacks through rituals.

  We also know Muhammad never healed anyone. Muhammad couldn't even heal himself. He eventually died of sickness from eating lamb that had been poisoned, a poisoning that he didn't even know about until it was too late.

  So why would anyone follow a man like Muhammad who had no power or authority over demons and disease...

  who God did not choose to save from some poisoned lamb...

  instead of the Son of God Who has all power and authority over them?

  Would you like to see what happened after Jesus gave His disciples power?

 6 So they went out and traveled from village to village, proclaiming the good news and healing everywhere.

  If you need healing or deliverance today, no matter of what type it might be, i
t's time to come home to Jesus!

Jesus is Lord!

  See also:

  Where Does Jesus Say, "I Am YHWH (God)" in the Bible?

  Where Does Jesus Say "I Am God" in the Aramaic Bible?

Wise Men Still Seek Him!

  In an effort to support their claim that Muhammad, and not Jesus, is "the prophet for all mankind," Muslims contend that Jesus came only for the Jews. To support this, they quote Jesus' words in Matthew 15, where He reminds His disciples,

24 “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

  Yes, Jesus' personal ministry while He was on earth was focused on the Jews but, as He demonstrated with the Canaanite woman and the Roman centurion, ultimately His mission was for all mankind, not just the Jews.

  As the Apostle Paul tells us, the Gospel "... is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes: first to the Jew, then to the Gentile." (Romans 1:16 NIV)(a Gentile would be anyone who is not a Jew)

  What may be the world's best known verse makes it quite clear for whom Jesus had come (italics mine for emphasis):

  “For God loved the world in this way: He gave His One and Only Son, so that everyone who believes in Him will not perish but have eternal life." John 3:16

  And just before His return to heaven, Jesus' instructions to His followers repeat the all-inclusive mandate:

  "Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit..." Matthew 28:19
  But there are other proofs that the Bible brings us of the openness of God's heaven to any who will come to the Father through Jesus, His Son. We shall also once again demonstrate that Jesus is clearly taught to be God in the pages of the Bible.

  This one should be of particular interest to Arabs or anyone else who has felt perhaps "left out" by God's choice of the Jews as the People through whom Messiah would come. We find this evidence in the first verses of Matthew 2:

 1 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of King Herod, wise men from the east arrived unexpectedly in Jerusalem,

 2 saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star in the east and have come to worship Him.”

 3 When King Herod heard this, he was deeply disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him.

 4 So he assembled all the chief priests and scribes of the people and asked them where the Messiah would be born.

  While scholars tell us that there is not much that we really know about these wise men, or as the Greek text calls them, "magi," what we do know is most interesting.  

  Whether these men merely studied the stars or worshiped them we aren't sure but, if they were pagans, then we know for sure they weren't Jews. We can also surmise that they were not Jews from the fact that they were searching for the King of the Jews, else they would have been seeking their King.

  We can also deduce that they were not Jews because the magi were known to be a powerful and learned priestly class from either Arabia, Persia, or Mesopotamia or, as the 2nd century Christian apologist Justin Martyr held, from Damascus in Syria. What this means is that these men had to travel many, many miles to worship the King of the Jews. Some scholars say it may have taken them as much as two years of following that star to Jerusalem, and then to Bethlehem.

  Others argue that these men could have been godly and monotheistic men who had been influenced by the prophecies and teachings of Daniel, who had been exiled to Babylon around 600BC and died there. Whichever school of thought we choose to believe, we know these men were Gentiles.

  But let us return briefly to the position held by Justin, which he relates was the traditional one. This belief is borne out by -- and our Muslim friends may not be too happy to hear this -- the Jerusalem Talmud. The Jerusalem Talmud is a collection of Rabbinic notes on the 2nd-century Jewish oral traditions from the 4th to the 5th centuries (A.D.). And it tells us something that may put a smile back on our Arab readers' faces. 

  Quoting from the Pulpit Commentary: 
"It is noticeable that Justin's tradition is confirmed by the Jerusalem Talmud ('Ber.,' 2:4), which makes an "Arabian" tell a Jew that Messiah is born... "After this the children of Israel shall be converted, and shall inquire after the Lord their God, and David their king (Hosea 3:5). Our rabbins say, 'That is King Messias, if he be among the living, his name is David, or if dead, David is his name.' Rabbi Tanchum said, 'Thus I prove it: He sheweth mercy to David his Messiah' (Psalm 18:50). Rabbi Josua ben Levi saith, 'His name is צמח, a Branch (Zechariah 3:8).' Rabbi Judah bar Aibu saith, ' His name is Menahem (that is, Para>klhtov, the Comforter).' And that which happened to a certain Jew, as he was ploughing, agreeth with this business. A certain Arabian travelling, and hearing the ox bellow, said to the Jew at plough, 'O Jew, loose thy oxen, and loose thy ploughs, for, behold, the temple is laid waste!' The ox bellowed the second time; the Arabian saith to him, 'O Jew, Jew, yoke thy oxen, and fit thy ploughs: for, behold, King Messiah is born!' But saith the Jew, 'What is his name?' 'Menahem,' saith he. 'And what is the name of his father?' 'Hezekiah,' saith the Arabian. To whom the Jew, 'But whence is he?' The other answered, ' From the palace of the King of Bethlehem-Judah.' 
  What have we just read? Let's break it down:

  The Jerusalem Talmud, which is Jewish Rabbinic thought (not Christian) based on the teachings of the Tanakh (the Talmud itself is not considered on the same level as Holy Scripture or inspired text), collected 3-400 years after the birth of Messiah says:

  - an Arab shall tell a Jew that the Messiah has been born

  - the rabbis clearly understand that Messiah will be a King Who is descended from David

  - Messiah's name is a Branch (see related article below titled "Jesus is Jeremiah's YHWH")

  - Messiah's name is Menahem (that is, Para>klhtov, the Comforter)

  - Messiah shall come from Bethlehem in Judah

  And what did we see in Matthew 2?

  Whether the magi were Syrians or Arabians or Persians, it was they who told the half-Jew Herod that the Messiah had been born. 

  That Messiah we know to be Jesus, King of the Jews, descended from the line of David.

  Jesus is the Righteous Branch prophesied of by Jeremiah and Isaiah.

  Jesus was born in Bethlehem of the Tribe of Judah.

  The only part that the Jerusalem Talmud seems to get wrong is where the rabbi calls Messiah the Parakletos, or Paraclete, the Comforter. But since the Father, Jesus and the Spirit are One YHWH, perhaps we can give him that. 

  As you can see, however, even Jewish rabbis from 500 years before Muhammad knew that the Comforter was not going to be an Arab named Muhammad, because Muhammad is not the Messiah.

  One other point: these are rabbis who were still waiting for Messiah, and yet their interpretation of Bible prophecies regarding the Coming One was pretty much the same as that of the Christians. So much for the claim that Christians made it all up out of whole cloth.

  But returning now to our two key issues:

  If Jesus was only sent for the Jews and not the Gentiles, then why is it that among the very first people who God chooses to lead to worship the Child Jesus were these Arabian non-Jews the Bible calls magi?

  And if it did, in fact, take the magi two years to find Jesus, do you realize that these Gentiles were the first to know that the Messiah was about to be born?

  If Jesus is not God, then why is the wise men's first reaction to the sight of Jesus to worship Him?

11 Entering the house, they saw the child with Mary His mother, and falling to their knees, they worshiped Him. Then they opened their treasures and presented Him with gifts: gold, frankincense, and myrrh. Matthew 2

  If, perhaps, the wise men had only knelt in worship, then we might be forgiven for assuming that they had only done so in honor of an earthly king. But the kneeling -- before a child, no less -- followed by the offering of their gifts proves that this was an act of worship of the Divine Son of God.

  Quoting from the Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary:
This expression, used frequently in the Old Testament of the oblations presented to God, is in the New Testament employed seven times, and always in a religious sense of offerings to God. Beyond doubt, therefore, we are to understand the presentation of these gifts by the Magi as a religious offering.
  If today, you still believe that Jesus was just a man, it is time to face some facts and set your thinking straight. 

  No mere man ever spoke like Jesus spoke. 

  Or lived as Jesus lived. 

  Or rose from the dead on his own power as Jesus did.

  It's time to get smart, because...

Jesus is Lord!

  See also:

  Jesus is Jeremiah's YHWH

  Jesus is The Gospel of Isaiah (Luke 4) Part 2

  Was Jesus "Just a Messenger?" (John 17:3) 

  Who Were the Magi?

Did Jesus Die On the Cross? II

  Muslims think they can deny the crucifixion of Jesus by quoting Bible verses out of context and pretending that there was another outcome than Jesus going to His certain death. They do this while ignoring the explicit verses which report precisely what happened at Golgotha.
  They cherry pick portions of verses from the New Testament to try to support their claim that Jesus did not die, solely because they choose to believe that their "Allah" replaced Jesus with Judas and (unjustly) crucified Judas instead.

  Here is one portion of a verse that they use from Matthew 26:

39 Going a little farther, He fell facedown and prayed, “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup pass from Me."

  They read this and they say, "You see? He prayed that the Father would not make Him go to the cross! And since He was a good man, He knew God would answer His prayer!"

  But what Muslims do not quote is the rest of that verse because in it, Jesus says:

  "Yet not as I will, but as You will.”

  Jesus knew what torture and abuse He was going to suffer at the hands of cruel Roman soldiers and even His own people. The Son of God could have simply chosen to stop right in the middle of all the merciless pain and cruelty, call on His Father to send down legions of angels and just destroy these sinful people. 

  But instead He prayed, "Not as I will, but as You will." 

  And the Father's will is exactly what Jesus followed. Just as He had told His disciples, the Son of Man did suffer many things at the hands of men and was killed but, as He promised (see Mark 8:31, 9:31 and 10:34, for example), He rose again after three days.

  Here is another verse that Muslims use to pretend there was no crucifixion of Jesus. It is found in Hebrews 5:

 7 During His earthly life, He offered prayers and appeals with loud cries and tears to the One who was able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His reverence. 

  Muslims take this verse to say that the Father answered Jesus' prayer to be spared the cross (though, as we have already seen, that is not quite all of what Jesus prayed), and that Father God answered Him by replacing Jesus with Judas on the cross. 

  Again, what they do not cite is the next verse from Hebrews 5, because it says:

 8 Though He was God’s Son, He learned obedience through what He suffered.

  Muslims do not cite this verse firstly because it says Jesus is the Son of God (their prophet Muhammad taught them that Allah cannot have a son because he has no consort), but also because it affirms that Jesus did, in fact, suffer. Jesus suffered all the torture and pain of the cross and He did die, because that is what He had told His disciples He was going to do. If YHWH God does anything, it is to keep His Word. 

  But the Father did hear Jesus' prayer in the Garden. And He answered Him by not leaving Him to rot in the grave and by raising Him up again after three days, just as He had promised.

  In contrast to these two passages, the Gospels are explicit about what happened at the cross. Here is the Merriam-Webster Dictionary definition of the word "explicit:"
 "very clear and complete: leaving no doubt about the meaning"
  The verses cited below from all 4 Gospels leave no doubt at all as to what actually happened at the cross. See for yourself:

Matthew 27:50 

International Standard Version

Then Jesus cried out with a loud voice again and died.

GOD'S WORD® Translation

Then Jesus loudly cried out once again and gave up his life.

Holman Christian Standard Bible

Jesus shouted again with a loud voice and gave up His spirit.

Mark 15:37

GOD'S WORD® Translation

Then Jesus cried out in a loud voice and died.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English

But Yeshua cried with a loud voice, and he expired.

Holman Christian Standard Bible

But Jesus let out a loud cry and breathed His last.

From the Passion of the Christ
from Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ"

Luke 23:46 

GOD'S WORD® Translation

Jesus cried out in a loud voice, "Father, into your hands I entrust my spirit." After he said this, he died.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English
And Yeshua called out in a loud voice and he said, “My Father, into your hands I lay down my spirit.” He said this and he expired.

Holman Christian Standard Bible

And Jesus called out with a loud voice, "Father, into Your hands I entrust My spirit." Saying this, He breathed His last.

From the Passion of the Christ
from Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ"

John 19:30  

GOD'S WORD® Translation

After Jesus had taken the vinegar, he said, "It is finished!" Then he bowed his head and died.

Aramaic Bible in Plain English

When he took the vinegar, Yeshua said, “Behold, it is finished.” And he bowed his head and gave up his Spirit.

Holman Christian Standard Bible

When Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, "It is finished!" Then bowing His head, He gave up His spirit. 

  Taking them from all 4 Gospels proves that there was no confusion whatsoever among the Apostles and disciples as to the events which had just changed their lives -- and ours -- forever.

  We quoted 3 different English versions to show our Muslim friends that having different versions of the Bible does not mean they say different things. 

  All the versions tell us the same thing: Jesus died on the cross.

  But our story does not end with the death of Jesus' human body, because the whole point of Messiah's mission was to make full and final atonement for the sins of mankind. Three days later outside Jesus' empty tomb, two angels asked His women disciples, 

  “Why are you looking for the living among the dead?... He is not here, but He has been resurrected!" Luke 24:5-6

  If you do not yet know Jesus as your Lord and Savior, this is what He says:

  “Don’t be afraid! I am the First and the Last, and the Living One. I was dead, but look—I am alive forever and ever, and I hold the keys of death and Hades." Revelation 1:17-18

Jesus is LORD!

  See also:

  Jesus Teaches About His Coming Death and Resurrection

  Two Old Testament Prophets Who Witnessed to the Coming Crucifixion and Death of Jesus?
  Who Was Judas' Double?

  Muslims Follow Jesus?

Lost in Transmission?

  Most Muslims have been taught that they have "the original Quran" locked up somewhere, and so they constantly criticize the New Testament and question its authorship. But as they do so, they fail to consider how they themselves received their Quran and their Hadith.

  The Quran represents the Islamic scriptures, while the Hadith are the traditions from which Muslims learn about the life and teachings of Muhammad. The Hadiths also teach Muslims how to interpret the Quran, making the two texts completely dependent on one another.

  But how were the words of the New Testament handed down to us, as opposed to how the Quran and Hadith were handed down to Muslims?

  The Gospels are 1st century Greco-Roman-style biographies which contain both the life and the teachings of the One and Only Son of God, Jesus Christ. All of the data contained in the New Testament Gospels was delivered to us either by eyewitnesses or by direct disciples of eyewitnesses. All four of our Gospel writers were fully able to interact with other eyewitnesses to confirm the facts at hand before setting them down in writing. 

  But not so with the Quran and the Hadith. 
As we are about to see, Muhammad himself was never an eyewitness to any conversations between his source and the Muslim god, Allah. Although he claimed that the Quran contains Allah's literal words, he relied completely on what was related to him by a being who he at first thought to be a demon, but later called an angel.

  The Hadith, on the other hand, took an even more circuitous route. 
The Hadith have two parts: the actual text of the hadith and the chain of narrators, called the isnad chain. The isnad chain is comprised of the names of the men who carried the information forward -- from memory -- from its original source, one of Muhammad's Companions.

  With that explanation out of the way, let us compare the chain of transmission from the God of the Bible to His disciples... 

  with how the god of the Quran brought his message to Muslims.

  The number beside the levels below denotes the number of intermediaries that the information came through before we could receive it. We will be using Sahih Bukhari as our example for the Hadith as it is considered the most reliable in Islam, and is second only to the Quran in authenticity:

The Four Gospels 

Jesus' Words and deeds
heard and seen by eyewitness Matthew 
written in the Gospel of Matthew (1)

Jesus' Words and deeds
heard and seen by eyewitness Peter (1)
related to Mark 
and written in the Gospel of Mark (2)

Jesus' Words and deeds
heard and seen by eyewitnesses (apostles, Jesus' mother Mary, the disciples and friends of Jesus)(1)
compiled by Luke
and written in the Gospel of Luke (2)

Jesus' Words and deeds
heard and seen by eyewitness John (1)
written in the Gospel of John (1)

  As we can see, with the Christian Gospels, the farthest information has to travel from the direct eyewitness of events to the written record is 2 levels.

As compared to: 

The Quran

Allah's words
Jibril the angel (1)
Muhammad (2)
orally passed on to the Qurra 
(memorizers of the Quran)(3)
Quranic ayat written on bones, sticks, etc. are finally
compiled into the Quran by Uthman (4)

A portion of the Quran
written on camel bone

  With Muhammad's Quran, information is said to have traveled from Allah to the angel to Muhammad, then to the memorizers before it finally makes it to the written record, the Mushaf (or the written pages of the Quran), for a total of 4 levels.

  This shows us that corruption of the text could have occurred in the transmission from Jibril to Muhammad, then from Muhammad to the Qurra, and from the Qurra to the written text.

  But, as we have already noted, there is one more very serious problem with the mode of transmission of the Quran, and that is that Muhammad never heard from Allah directly. Muhammad was never an actual eyewitness to the "revelations" given to him which were supposedly from Allah. Not only could he never confirm that what the angel told him came from Allah because he was never there to hear the actual words, but no one ever confirmed that Muhammad had, in fact, spoken to an angel.

  There was no witness that Allah spoke the words of the Quran to the angel.

  There was no witness that the angel ever spoke them to Muhammad.

  We have only one man's word, Muhammad's, for all of the content of the Quran.

  And all of this comes to us not just secondhand or thirdhand, but fourth-hand.

  Now let us compare the above texts to...

the Hadith

Muhammad's words and deeds
seen and heard by a Companion
related to a narrator (1)
orally passed on to another narrator (2)
orally passed on to another narrator (3)
orally passed on to another narrator (4)
orally passed on to another narrator (5)
orally passed on to another narrator, 
and finally written into the Hadith (6)

  Where the farthest the information in the Gospels ever had to travel was 2 levels...

  and where the Quran first goes through 4 other sources...

  the average Hadith first passes through as many as 6-7 levels (the average length of an isnad chain) before it gets to the reader.

  If you have ever played "the Telephone Game" at a children's party, you have some idea of what might have happened to the text of the Quran and the Hadiths en route to the Muslim. While Islamic scholars such as Bukhari attempted to address this problem by scrutinizing the lives and character of the sources of the information, there is another major problem that Muslims face in the transmission of the Islamic texts, and that is...

The Time Between Writing and Collection

The New Testament 

From Jesus' ascension (30-33AD) 
to the 4 Gospels (70AD)
about 40 years

A portion of the Gospel of John known as P52
dated at 100-125AD

   The entire New Testament was a completed text before 100AD. The Scripture portion pictured above dates from approximately 65 years after Jesus' return to heaven, while a recent discovery has been tentatively placed at 75AD, or just 40 years after Jesus. P52 (above) reads exactly the same way as most modern Bibles. 

  New Testament and Greek scholar Dr. Daniel Wallace believes that the Gospel of John, traditionally thought to have been written last, could be dated to as early as 60AD, reducing the above figure to just 30 years from the ascension of Christ. 

  Note as well that the New Testament texts are more than 500 years older than Muhammad and Islam, and would therefore have been subject to much greater deterioration than any Islamic texts.

The Quran

From Muhammad's death (632AD) 
to the collection of the Quran by Abu Bakr
and its compilation by Uthman (653AD)
21 years 
(as claimed by Islamic historians)

A page from the Sana'a Quran,
Islam's oldest existing Quran.
It is dated at 705AD

  The Quran palimpsest above is from the oldest Quran available, and is dated at about 73 years after Muhammad's deathThe Sana'a Quran has many erasures and alterations on its pages. It also has only 43 Surahs (chapters), in contrast to today's standard Quran, which has 114 chapters.

  The Hadith

From Muhammad's death (632AD) 
to Bukhari's collection of the Hadiths 
(completed c. 846AD)
about 214 years 

  Why is the time line important? 

  It is important because the facts which were related in the Gospels could have been confirmed or denied by the apostles and disciples of Jesus, many of whom were still alive in 70AD. The Apostle John, for example, was said to have lived beyond 100AD. Had there been any corruption of the Bible text, any of these men and women would have spoken out against it.

  While the 21 year gap between the death of Muhammad and the collection and compilation of the Quran may seem impressive, these figures are based on the "official" Islamic account, which conflicts with the actual historical record, as you can see in this slide taken from a presentation given by Christian apologist Jay Smith (the video is linked to below):

  Based on the actual findings of scholars and historians:

The first reference to what could be Quranic material is in 691AD


or 59 years after the death of Muhammad

The first reference to an Arab "Scripture"
is found in 717AD


or 85 years after Muhammad

  The Quran is first mentioned in non-Muslim sources
in 740AD


or 108 years after Muhammad

  The first reference to a pre-canonical Quran
is around 743AD


or 111 years after Muhammad

  The first reference to Qurans on Muslim inscriptions
comes in the 750s AD


or almost 120 years after Muhammad 

  There are no extant Quranic manuscripts until the 8th century, which clearly shows that Muhammad had nothing to do with the Quran that Muslims have today. The problem this poses for Muslims is the fact that they believe that Muhammad was the Final Prophet. As such, anything that was written after his passing cannot be reliably attributed to him.

  Neither was the Quran that is in Muslim hands today ever vetted by him. He never saw what form it took, neither did he get to see what was put into it, or what was left out of it.

  Muhammad himself never called for the Quran to be put down in writing, and this means that his followers took a path "Allah" never commanded for them to take when they did so. This may be one of the reasons why there are at least 50 different versions of the Quran, according to Islamic scholars. Note that these are 50 different versions of the Quran, not just translations.

  Historians and scholars would have wanted to see "the original" Quranic manuscripts, but Uthman had them all burned after they had been sifted through and parts of them edited. The Islamic sources record that they were burned precisely to avoid any future textual issues.

  In sum, Muslims find themselves following a Quran with an extremely tenuous and apparently manufactured history. Even worse, Islamic sources say much of the Quran has been lost, while other parts were simply forgotten.

  In contrast, the entire New Testament has been in the hands of Christians (and even many non-Christians) for almost 2,000 years now with not one epistle or Gospel lost. Even today, Bible manuscripts are being discovered that had been previously hidden away for centuries, and yet, amazingly, experts have yet to find a single one that departs from the text we already have in our hands.

  This shows us that Christians can depend on a Holy Spirit-inspired text from its writing to its preservation which has remained untainted and uncorrupted from the beginning.

  The God of the Bible has kept His Word, both literally and figuratively. As Jesus said:

  "Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will never pass away." Matthew 24:35

Jesus is Lord!

  With many thanks to my brothers Anthony Rogers, Samuel Green and my fellow E-MAMS for allowing me to pick their brains.

  New information on the Quranic manuscripts is available in this debate between Christian apologist Jay Smith and Muslim debater Dr. Shabir Ally:

  Jay Smith vs. Dr.Shabir Ally - Bible vs Quran: Which is the Word of God?

  See also:

  Are the chains of narration (isnad) for the Qur'an reliable?

  An Historical Critique of Islam's Beginnings

  Much of the Quran is Gone!

  Is There Truly Only One Quran?

  Comparing the Bible and Quranic Manuscripts

  What is the Basis for Your Beliefs?

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