The Qur’an and the Injeel #2

The first post in this series showed verses from the Qur’an that teach that the Injeel (the Arabic name Muslims use for the Gospels) is revelation given to us by Allah and that Muslims are called to believe in it.  There are blatant contradictions between what is taught within the Qur’an and the Injeel.  Muslims handle these contradictions by saying, “The Injeel has been corrupted, and the Qur’an has replaced the Injeel.”  There are several responses that a Christian could give to Muslims who say this.

Please visit Crescent Project.  The bulk of this series is outlining the Bridges series from Crescent Project.

____________________________________________________________________________

Books which Muslims recognize to be from Allah are first the Torah (the books of Moses), the Psalms of David, the Gospel of Jesus (Injeel), and the Qur’an.
Muslims believe that Allah sent the Torah (Tawrat, Arabic name), but that the Torah was changed.  Because of this change, Allah sent the Zabur (the Psalms of David).  These were also changed, so God sent Jesus and his Gospel revealed in the Injeel.  The Injeel was also changed, so Allah sent the Qur’an, given to Muhammad by the angel Gabriel.
Islamic Understanding
Muslims truly believe that Allah’s word was handed down in phases to mankind after each revelation had been corrupted.

Muslims believe that the Qur’an will not be corrupted, since Allah will protect His word.

Muslims will say that the Injeel has gone through many versions and that the real one cannot be found.

They say that Christians have changed many of the stories in the Torah, the Psalms of David, and the Injeel. For instance, Muslims say that Jesus never died on the cross.  It was either someone else or an apparition who appeared to be Jesus.  This means that Jesus never died, he just ascended into heaven.  They also say that Ishmael was the promised son to Abraham, not Isaac, and that Abraham was asked to sacrifice Ishmael.

Christian Understanding

The Injeel is the word of God.

God will keep his word.
There are not many versions of the Injeel (NT).  Instead, there are many translations.  Some translations contain the word “version” in their title which helps lead to this confusion.  Scholars have gone to great lengths to study the original Koine Greek to make accurate translations that truly represent the original text and language.  The many translations when compared, maintain the one message.  A problem that arises from this with Muslims is that they believe the only authoritative text of the Qur’an is in Arabic, and when they pray to Allah they must pray in Arabic, even if they don’t know or understand Arabic.
Now that these two different perspectives on the nature of the Injeel have been presented the next posts will share three approaches, or responses, a Christian may take to encourage a Muslim to read the Injeel. 

The Qur’an and the Injeel #1

A Muslim Noodle Shop (LaMian Dian) in Hangzhou, China.
In China, it is very common to see Muslim run
noodle shops throughout the country.

The Islamic creed, when spoken in faith, makes someone a Muslim.  This creed is “There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is his messenger.”


The Qur’an, which means recitation, is the message Muhammad received from Allah. 


The Injeel is the Arabic name given to what Christians call the New Testament. 

_____________________________________________________________________________

From looking at the Islamic creed, one would assume that Muslims reject the Injeel (The Gospels) to be the word of God, since Muhammad is the messenger of the one and only God, Allah.
This however is not the case according to what is written in the Qur’an…
Qur’an 2:136 – “Say ye: ‘We believe in Allah, and the revelation given to us, and to Abraham, Isma’il, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to Moses and Jesus, and that given to prophets from their Lord: We make no difference between one and another of them: And we bow to Allah.” 
Qur’an 3:2-3 – “God!  There is no god but He, – the Living, the Self-Subsisting, Eternal.  It is He who sent down to thee, in truth, the Book, confirming what went before it; and He sent down the Law of Moses and the Gospel of Jesus.” 
Qur’an 5:82“You will surely find the most intense of the people in animosity toward the believers [to be] the Jews and those who associate others with Allah ; and you will find the nearest of them in affection to the believers those who say, “We are Christians.” That is because among them are priests and monks and because they are not arrogant.”
Qur’an 5:46-47 “And We sent, following in their footsteps, Jesus, the son of Mary, confirming that which came before him in the Torah; and We gave him the Gospel, in which was guidance and light and confirming that which preceded it of the Torah as guidance and instruction for the righteous. And let the People of the Gospel judge by what Allah has revealed therein. And whoever does not judge by what Allah has revealed – then it is those who are the defiantly disobedient.”

Qur’an quotes taken from Sahih International from http://quran.com.

_____________________________________________________________________________

The Qur’an clearly defines the Injeel (Gospels) to be the word of Allah.  Muslims teach that Jesus was a prophet of Allah.  If you ask if a prophet speaks the word of God, they would say yes.  Clearly, this brings up a problem because the Injeel records Jesus referring to himself as God and his followers teaching others that he is God.
So how do Muslims get around this contradiction, especially since the Injeel, confirmed by Muhammad to be the revelation of Allah, came before the the Qur’an?Muslims claim that the Injeel has been corrupted, which is why Allah sent his word to Muhammad.

______________________________________________________________________________

I will post different responses a Christian can provide to Muslim claims that the Injeel has been corrupted over the next couple of weeks.

The Bible or the Qur’an

One Minute Apologist looks at the Bible and the Qur’an – which is the Word of God?  Obviously, neither could the Word of God, but because of contradictions, the both can’t be the Word of God.

Summary of the short video:

They both can’t be true because they contradict each other.
Historically establish that Jesus predicted his violent death and that he died a violent death, then Bible must be correct and not the Qur’an.  If he didn’t die a violent death, then the Qur’an would be correct on that point, however it would be wrong on Jesus being a prophet, because Jesus predicted he would die a violent death, but he did not.  Catch 22.

My comment on this video: I think this argument falls short. Wouldn’t the Qur’an have to contain an account of Jesus predicting his own violent death for there to be a Catch-22. Muslims already say that the Bible has been corrupted, so anything that is a contradiction between the two is erased away under the conclusion that man changed the Bible at some point in time. Of course, it’s a good start to a conversation, because after a Muslim presents the Bible’s been corrupted argument, more in-depth conversation can begin. Not bad for a one-minute video (that was two minutes long).

Islam and the Five Pillars

Christianity speaks of a foundation for our beliefs – Jesus Christ!  
Islam has pillars.  
Pillars, of course, hold up the roof of a building.  The pillars of Islam are then viewed as holding up the Islamic faith.  Following these pillars are essential to all Muslims.  Salvation comes through observing these pillars, yet, there is no guarantee to any Muslim that he or she has followed these well enough, as well as having other good works in their lives, enough to warrant salvation from Allah!
The Five Pillars of Islam
  1. Creed – The creed of Islam is “There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is his messenger.”  When this single sentence is spoken in faith it makes a person a Muslim.
  2. Prayer – Muslims must pray five times a day facing Mecca.
  3. Charity to the Poor – Muslims must give a percentage of their income to the poor.  Generally, this is 2.5%.
  4. Fasting during Ramadan – Muslims must fast from food and water every day of the ninth month of the Muslim calendar.  This fast is known as Ramadan.   When the sun goes down, they can eat and drink.
  5. Pilgrimage to Mecca – This pilgrimage is called Hajj.  Muslims must travel to Mecca once in their lifetime if they have the financial means to do so.  Once in Mecca, there is is a series of numerous acts that must be performed, but the central task involves worship in the Kabbah.

So… how can a Christian present the Christian faith to a Muslim using these five pillars? 

First, ask questions, even if you already know the answers.  Show that you want to learn from them.  Ask,  “What are the five pillars to you?”

For the Creed, which for them is “There is no God but Allah, and Muhhammad is his messenger,” you can share that Christianity also has creeds.  The Apostles’ Creed and the Nicene Creed.  You could also share that you too believe in only one God.  They’ll likely argue that… and say that you believe in three gods.  But you can then share the Christian faith to them more.

For the daily prayers, you can ask questions about what are the prayers you say?  Why do you have to say them in Arabic?  You can can share that Christians pray too, and that God hears our prayers at all times, not just at certain moments, because he is all powerful and knows all things and wants to listen to what his children have to say.

Charity – you can share that it’s good that they give to the poor.  You can share that Christians give too.

Fasting – you can share that Christians fast too, but that it’s optional for us, and that we can do it anytime we want, and that the purpose for the fasting for us is lead us to pray and to remind us to pray.

Hajj – you can share that to Christians this entire life is a pilgrimage!  This is not our home.  Our home is in heaven with God and we are just strangers passing through this world to our eternal home with God.

They may even ask you more questions about these similarities.  If you have a Bible you can share verses from the Bible with them.  Many Muslims have not read the Bible, yet they believe that the prophets of the Bible, and even Jesus, were prophets for Allah, so their words should be authoritative (although they believe the Bible has been corrupted).