An Object Of Blessing
Finally, many Muslims believe the Quran itself to be a source of blessing. One way to obtain such blessing, as noted by Carole Hillenbrand, is by developing proficiency as a reciter of the Quran, which is a skill highly valued in Muslim societies and one said to bring both spiritual and material rewards.18 The Quran, then, both guides the Muslim and provides a means of blessing.
Less frequentlyand as is the case in certain syncretistic Christian environmentssome Muslims read verses from the Quran as incantations or to ward off evil in certain situations. Additionally, some Muslims display copies of the Quran in their homes, cars, and places of business because its very presence is considered to bring luck and protection. Thus, in certain Muslim cultures, the book itself is viewed as a talisman or charm.
Does The Quran Teach That The Bible Was Corrupted Over Time
In theological conversations with Muslims, you may come across an argument that goes something like this:
The original message of the Bible has been corrupted by centuries of copying, translating, and passing down information. The result is a mishmash of contradictions and errors, the consequence of which is that the original gospel message is lost. In contrast, the manuscripts of the Quran are uniform and unaltered. Their textual accuracy and word meanings are clear, and as a result, whereas Gods message in the Bible is unreliable, we can trust that Gods message has been faithfully transmitted in the Quran.
There are three objections here. The first is that the Bible has been corrupted and the original divine message lost. The second is that the Quran has not been subject to corruption, but the Bible has, and therefore, third, Gods message has been faithfully preserved only in the Quran. Here we will examine the first of these objections.
Corruption Of The Bible
The basis of Muslim anti-Christian polemics against the Bible is the idea that Jewish and Christian communities received the true scripture but that the true message was suppressed and the text itself was physically altered. For example, a Muslim hadith states the following:
O community of Muslims, how is it that you seek wisdom from the people of the book? Your book, brought down upon his prophetblessings and peace of God upon himis the latest report about God. You read a book that has not been distorted, but the people of the book, as God related to you, exchanged that which God wrote, changing the book with their hands .
The people of the book refers to Jews and Christians. Notre Dame professor Gabriel Reynolds, in his article On the Quranic Accusation of Scriptural Falsification and Christian Anti-Jewish Polemic, explains that when one looks at the Quran, what emerges is that it is mostly concerned with the misuse of scripture. These are the quranic verses pertinent to the topic:
The first verse clearly deals with the misinterpretation of the text, not changing the text. The second verse does the same.
Another verse that echoes this sentiment is Quran 5:13-15:
Like the verses above, these do not direct criticism against the Christian or Jewish holy texts but rather against those who forget them or misinterpret them.
The only passage that mentions false scripture is Sura 2:79:
Relationship With Other Literature
Some non-Muslim groups such as the Baháí Faith and Druze view the Quran as holy. In the Baháí Faith, the Quran is accepted as authentic revelation from God along with the revelations of the other world religions, Islam being a stage within in the divine process of progressive revelation. Baháulláh, the Prophet-Founder of the Baháí Faith, testified to the validity of the Quran, writing, “Say: Perused ye not the Qurán? Read it, that haply ye may find the Truth, for this Book is verily the Straight Path. This is the Way of God unto all who are in the heavens and all who are on the earth.”Unitarian Universalists may also seek inspiration from the Quran. The Quran has been noted to have certain narratives similarities to the Diatessaron, Protoevangelium of James, Infancy Gospel of Thomas, Gospel of Pseudo-Matthew and the Arabic Infancy Gospel. One scholar has suggested that the Diatessaron, as a gospel harmony, may have led to the conception that the Christian Gospel is one text.
Did You Know That Koran Validates The Bible And Invalidates Itself
One would think that the Koran, like other holy books, would try to carve out its own set of claims and distance itself from claims of other holy books. The strange thing is that the Koran doesnt do this as people may presume according to the Koran, the Koran and the Bible are supposedly on equal footing. Did you know that the Koran actually validates the Bible, and in so doing invalidates itself?
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A Simple Reason Why The Quran Cannot Be The Word Of God
The Islamic religion claims that the Quran, revealed allegedly by the angel Gabriel to the prophet Muhammad beginning in 610 A.D., is the inspired and inerrant word of God. Such an assertion, however, is highly problematic, and many, many arguments could be given to convincingly refute it. In this article, I am going to offer one of those reasons, which I perceive to be the most damning. In future articles, we will consider some other serious difficulties with the idea that the Quran represents the revealed words of God. My argument here can be summarized in syllogistic form as follows:
Premise 1: Either the Bible is the Word of God or it is not.
Premise 2: If the Bible is the Word of God, the Quran is not.
Premise 3: If the Bible is not the Word of God, the Quran is not.
: Therefore, the Quran is not the Word of God.
First, a note of qualification. By the Bible I refer to the Old and New Testaments as we possess them today and as possessed by Christians at the time of Muhammad in the seventh century. Granted, there are textual variants in the New Testament Greek manuscripts, but the core message of the New Testament remains the same they are thus immaterial to what Im attempting to establish here.
The Qurans Affirmation of the Christian and Jewish Scriptures
The Quran even goes so far as to assert that the prophet Muhammad is prophesied in both the Old and New Testaments. Consider the following verses.
We go on:
Salvation Available To All
The need for salvation, and the hope of life after death, are core themes in both the Quran and the Bible. Yet the two books are incompatible in their understandings of Jesus Christ. The Quran teaches that Jesus was neither God nor the Son of God but was simply a prophet. This is such an important Islamic tenet that the assertion that God begets not was inscribed on the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem toward the end of the seventh century ad. While the Quran points to Jesus as sent from God, the Christian Bible is unique in presenting salvation as coming through God who became flesh.
Muhammad pointed his followers to many biblical prophecies of Jesus coming. Surah 3:3848 tells of angels informing Zechariah the priest about Jesus imminent birth. The Quran records that upon his visiting the virgin Mary, Zechariah tells her the unborn baby is sent by God and even states that He would be the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, who will be held in honour in this world and in the next . Interestingly, although the Quran rejects that Jesus was the Son of God, the Quran does teach Jesus resurrectionthat Jesus said He would be raised to life again .
Are Israelites And Arabs Both Shemitic
Scriptures tell us that both Arabs and Israelites are from Noahs son Shem.
This means that they are both Shemitic. Show me is a distant relative of Abraham and Abraham is the father of Ishmael who is one of the fathers of the Arabs.
Abraham is also the father of Isaac who is the father of Jacob who is the father of the Israelites. It is the Israelites who the most High gave his spiritual covenant too.
When we read the book of Jubilees we are told that Abraham married a second wife and it is the mixture between this wifes offspring and the sons of Ishmael who became the Arabs.
We are also told that Arab means mixed people and we see evidence of Ishmaelites mixing with hamitic people also who are Africans today.
Compilation Of The Quran
Therefore, one of the first acts of the community was to begin the process of recording the Quran in writing. The necessity of this task was made all the more urgent when many of the Muslims who had memorized the Quran were killed during the early battles in which the Muslim armies fought. In light of these deaths, Gabriel Said Reynolds comments, Abu Bakr accordingly became concerned that some of the divine revelation might soon be lost forever, so he commissioned a council to record the entire text.2 This council included Muhammads scribe, Zayd ibn Thabit, along with several Meccan scholars. The council gathered all those who had memorized the Quran and collectively determined the correct and authoritative reading.
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The Business Of Marketing The Bible And The Koran Says A Lot About The State Of Modern Christianity And Islam
CHRISTIANS and Muslims have one striking thing in common: they are both people of the book. And they both have an obligation to spread the Wordto get those Holy Books into the hands and hearts of as many people as they can.
Spreading the Word is hard. The Bible is almost 800,000 words long and littered with tedious passages about begetting. The Koran is a mere four-fifths of the length of the New Testament but some Westerners find it an even more difficult read. Edward Gibbon complained about its endless incoherent rhapsody of fable and precept. Thomas Carlyle said that it was as toilsome reading as I ever undertook a wearisome, confused jumble, crude, incondite.
Yet over 100m copies of the Bible are sold or given away every year. Annual Bible sales in America are worth between $425m and $650m Gideon’s International gives away a Bible every second. The Bible is available all or in part in 2,426 languages, covering 95% of the world’s population.
The Koran is not only the most widely read book in the Islamic world but also the most widely recited . There is no higher goal in Muslim life than to become a human repository of the Holy Book there is no more common sound in the Muslim world than the sound of Koranic recitation.
A well-thumbed Book
The world’s richest and most powerful country contains some 80m Evangelicals
This article appeared in the Christmas Specials section of the print edition under the headline “The battle of the books”
Revelation Of Gods Will
Though it may initially seem an insignificant distinction, the content of the Qurans revelation is not God himself but rather Gods will. The Quran rejects the idea that anyone can know God personally. The person of Godif one can so speak of Allah in Islamis wholly transcendent and unknowable. Perhaps the closest thing that can be known about Gods essence is simply that God is one.13 The Quran instead occupies itself with revealing how human creatures are to follow Gods will.
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God’s Love Is For Those Who Dogood/god’s Love Is For Everyone
The Quran is replete with this conditionalelement. In every single Quranic passage dealing with God loving an individual,the order is always as follows:
1. The person does good,
2. God loves the person.
Note these selected examples:
“And spend of your substance in the cause of Allah and makenot your own hands contribute to your destruction but do good for Allahloveth those who do good” .
Note in the following passage that spiritual purity is a prerequisitefor being loved by God: “For Allah loves those who turn to Himconstantly and He loves those who keep themselves pure and clean”. The question begs to be asked, if the person decided not tobe “pure and clean” would they still be loved by God? The answerappears in 3:32 “Say: “Obey Allah and His Apostle” butif they turn back Allah loveth not those who reject Faith.”Thisis important, as will been seen later, because in the QuranGod does not enjoin love from His people, only obedience. According tothe Quran a person does well to love God, butGod is more interested in obedience than love. Note these other Quranicpassages, they are only a few of many:
“Those that keep their plighted faith and act aright verilyAllah loves those who act aright.
“Those who spend whether in prosperity or in adversity who restrain anger and pardon men for Allah loves those who do good”
Islamic View Of The Bible
The Quran mentions the Torah , the Zabur and the Injil as being revealed by God to the prophets Moses, David and Jesus respectively in the same way the Quran was revealed to Muhammad, the final prophet and messenger of God according to Muslims.
Traditionally, many Muslim religious authorities view these books as having been altered and interpolated over time, while maintaining that the Quran remains as the final, unchanged and preserved word of God.
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The Unalterability Of Gods Revelation
Some will claim that Islam has a concept of abrogation whereby newer revelation can replace older ones and set a new precedence. But we have to be careful when were speaking about direct revelation from God. The Bible also has new revelations, but in the biblical context, there is no such thing as overturning subsequent progressive revelation only clarifies and enriches past revelation. Even Jesus confirmed that He did not come to abolish the Law, but to fulfill it. The Koran, itself, agrees that Gods words cannot be altered,
The Word of your Lord has been completed, in truth and justice. There is no changing to His words.IIKoran 6:115
However, now the matter becomes worse for Korans claim about the validity of the Torah and the Gospel. The Koran states that none of Gods words are alterable, which also includes Koran 3:3. This means that there can be no new transmission of revelation that can override that which God has already revealed the Torah and the Gospel are valid. In other words, the Koran states that the revelation from God written down in the Bible is final and unchangeable.
To summarize, lets consider our alternatives concerning the Koran and the Bible. The Koran says that the Bible is the true and inspired word of God. The Bible says many things that directly contradict other claims made in the Koran. In light of these facts, the list of potential options we have available to us are as follows:
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From Violence Toward Outsiders To Depictions Of Jesus The Central Texts Of Christianity And Islam Are Both Similar And Different In Ways You Wouldn’t Believe
Wikimedia CommonsContrasting Christian and Muslim depictions of Mary holding the newborn Jesus.
Many people think of the Quran as a radically different book from the Bible. Moreover, according to this view, even though Muslims and Christians all believe in the same God, these religions are different, distinct traditions.
An argument can be made, however, that the similarities between the Bible and the Quran are actually much more intimate than one might think, and that Islam, Judaism and Christianity are closer to being different interpretations of a shared religious culture than totally distinct traditions.
According to Muslim belief and scholarly accounts, the history of the Quran began in the year 610, when the angel Gabriel appeared to Muhammad in a cave near Mecca, reciting to him the first verses of the Quran.
The angel Gabriel is, of course, an important character in the Hebrew Bible and the New Testament .
Beyond Gabriel, the Quran is filled with characters from the Hebrew Bible: Adam, Noah, Abraham, Lot, Isaac, Ishmael, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, David and Goliath, Jonah, Mary, and John the Baptist all appear, among others including Jesus.
Here are five fascinating examples that reveal the crucial similarities and differences between Christianity and Islam, some of whose followers find themselves increasingly at odds with one another:
The Inspired Scripture Debate
The Bible teaches that God spoke His inspired Scripture through divinely chosen men moved by the Holy Spirit that it is theopneustos, or God-breathed , true and the basis for all doctrine . The inspired canon of Scripture concludes with the sobering warning that the Bible is not to be added to or taken from . It is not to be contradicted by some further revelation that would revise or supersede its commands.
How do Muslims deal with this? Some Muslims contend that the Bible was originally trustworthy, but that it had become corrupted at some point. This is simply a false and easily disprovable claim. Many Bible manuscripts date back to hundreds of years before Muhammads time. Furthermore, these manuscripts were well known in Muhammads day, and many of those same manuscripts remain to modern times. For example, the beautifully preserved Codex Vaticanus, Codex Sinaiticus , the Chester Beatty Papyri , smaller fragments such as the John Ryland Fragment , the Bodmer Papyri, and hundreds of other copies of the New Testament which date from before the time of Muhammad survive today and attest to the inerrancy of Scripture.
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