In November of 2014, Muslims were allowed to conduct their prayer service in the National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. Was this the right thing to do or not? Let’s take a closer look at this situation and see where it leads us. A good place to start is to see if the LORD God (I AM – Exodus 3:13-14) of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob the same as Allah.
The Bible shows that God originally chose the Hebrews to bring his message to the whole world:
The blessing of Abraham
Genesis12:1-3: “Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father’s house, unto a land that I will shew thee: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.”
Blessing of Isaac – Abraham’s covenant passed on to him:
Genesis 17:19-21: “And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, [and] with his seed after him. And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee: Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation. But my covenant will I establish with Isaac, which Sarah shall bear unto thee at this set time in the next year.”
Blessing of Jacob – Abraham’s covenant passed on to him
Genesis 35:9-12: “And God appeared unto Jacob again, when he came out of Padan-aram, and blessed him. And God said unto him, Thy name [is] Jacob: thy name shall not be called any more Jacob, but Israel shall be thy name: and he called his name Israel. And God said unto him, I [am] God Almighty: be fruitful and multiply; a nation and a company of nations shall be of thee, and kings shall come out of thy loins; And the land which I gave Abraham and Isaac, to thee I will give it, and to thy seed after thee will I give the land.
Spreading God’s Word – Whose Job is It?
Charge to Israel:
Deuteronomy4:5-8: “Behold, I have taught you statutes and judgments, even as the LORD my God commanded me, that ye should do so in the land whither ye go to possess it. Keep therefore and do [them;] for this [is] your wisdom and your understanding in the sight of the nations, which shall hear all these statutes, and say, Surely this great nation [is] a wise and understanding people. For what nation [is there so] great, who [hath] God [so] nigh unto them, as the LORD our God [is] in all [things that] we call upon him [for?] And what nation [is there so] great, that hath statutes and judgments [so] righteous as all this law, which I set before you this day?”
Charge to Christians:
Matthew 28:18-20: “And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you alway, [even] unto the end of the world. Amen.”
In the future, the commission of the preaching of God’s Word will once again return to the Hebrews, the church having been taken to be with Jesus prior to the revealing of the Antichrist, Earth’s last, most powerful, and worst dictator (1 Thessalonians 4:13-18; 2 Thessalonians 2:6-1).
Zechariah 8:22-23: “Yea, many people and strong nations shall come to seek the LORD of hosts in Jerusalem, and to pray before the LORD. Thus saith the LORD of hosts; In those days [it shall come to pass,] that ten men shall take hold out of all languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you: for we have heard [that] God [is] with you.”
Romans 11:7, 11-12: What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the election hath obtained it, and the rest were blinded. . . . I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but [rather] through their fall salvation [is come] unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy. Now if the fall of them [be] the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness?
Jesus – Christian and Islamic Views
The foundation of Christianity is based on Jesus Christ himself and it is here that there are irreconcilable differences between the Bible’s account of him and that found in the Quran. We will now examine these specifically.
This is what the Bible tells us about Jesus:
He was born to a virgin named Mary.
Luke 1:26-33: “And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth, to a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin’s name [was] Mary. And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, [thou that art] highly favoured, the Lord [is] with thee: blessed [art] thou among women. And when she saw [him,] she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.
And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.”
The Bible also demonstrates that Jesus is not only the Son of God, but God in the flesh:
John 1:1-5, 17-18: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. . . For the law was given by Moses, [but] grace and truth came by Jesus Christ. No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared [him].
John 8:57-58: “Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? 8:58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.”
John 10:30: “I and [my] Father are one.” (Note: Jesus is the one speaking here.)
As for Jesus being the Messiah, there are messianic indications in the passages above but there is a direct admission from Jesus himself in the verse below:
John 4:25-26: The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things. Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am [he].”
According to the Quran, however, Jesus is not divine, nor is he the true Messiah. Anyone who claims he is, is a “disbeliever.”
Sura 5:19. They indeed have disbelieved who say: Lo! Allah is the Messiah, son of Mary. Say: Who then can do aught against Allah, if He had willed to destroy the Messiah son of Mary, and his mother and everyone on earth? Allah’s is the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them. He createth what He will. And Allah is Able to do all things.
Sura 5: 78. The Messiah, son of Mary, was no other than a messenger, messengers [the like of whom] had passed away before him. And his mother was a saintly woman. And they both used to eat [earthly] food. See how We make the revelations clear for them, and see how they are turned away!
According to the Bible Jesus’ death was by crucifixion:
Matthew 27:35-38: “And they crucified him, and parted his garments, casting lots: that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, They parted my garments among them, and upon my vesture did they cast lots. And sitting down they watched him there; and set up over his head his accusation written, THIS IS JESUS THE KING OF THE JEWS. Then were there two thieves crucified with him, one on the right hand, and another on the left.
This is refuted in the Quran, which says it only looked that way. (I’m personally wondering how a convincing illusion such as this could have been performed.)
Sura 4:157. And because of their saying: We slew the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, Allah’s messenger – they slew him not nor crucified him, but it appeared so unto them; and lo! those who disagree concerning it are in doubt thereof; they have no knowledge thereof save pursuit of a conjecture; they slew him not for certain.
It follows that they also do not believe in Jesus’ resurrection which is chronicled in all four Gospels, another core belief of Christianity. Paul addressed the matter of the resurrection this way:
1 Corinthians 15:13-21: “But if there be no resurrection of the dead, then is Christ not risen: And if Christ be not risen, then [is] our preaching vain, and your faith [is] also vain. . . . And if Christ be not raised, your faith [is] vain; ye are yet in your sins. Then they also which are fallen asleep in Christ are perished.
If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. But now is Christ risen from the dead, [and] become the firstfruits of them that slept. But now is Christ risen from the dead, [and] become the firstfruits of them that slept. For since by man [came] death, by man [came] also the resurrection of the dead.”
Next time we’ll explore other major differences between Christian and Muslim beliefs.