Scriptures of Christianity And Islam: A Basic Comparison Pdf Download
COMPARISON BETWEEN CHRISTIAN AND ISLAM SCRIPTURES – Book Sample
The Muslim Position
Christians and Muslims who learn something of one another’s religion find that a crucial issue is the nature of Jesus. The majority of Christians deify Jesus while Muslims say that he was no more than a prophet of God, a faultless human being. The doctrine of the Trinity avows that three distinct co-equals are God. In particular, Jesus is said to be God the Son or the Son of God. As the Muslim questions details of this theology the Christian characteristically forms a common explanation for our differences: He complains that Muslims do not understand the Trinity: that we are actually accusing Christians of Tritheism and other heresies.
So the Muslim seeks clarification of the teaching and asks at every step: “How could that be so?” For example, we insist that the term “Son of God” cannot have a literal interpretation. Sonship and divine nature would be necessary attributes of such an actuality, but these are incompatible. The first describes a recipient of life while the second describes One who received life from no one. These are mutually exclusive requirements then. To be a son is to be less than divine, and to be divine is to be no one’s son.
As a discussion proceeds, it is the Christian who will eventually take refuge in the response: “These are things that we cannot understand.” His assessment of the Muslim’s problem becomes his own confession. The Christian explanation becomes self-defeating so there is a change of tactic.
Why must Jesus be divine
He complains that the Muslim refuses to accept what cannot be understood. But the modified approach is a diversion. Now the concepts of verification and understanding are confused. To illustrate: Chemical reactions may be verified but the atom is not thereby understood. Facts are catalogued but not always explained. This distinction is the key to our concise reply. It is the Muslim who must redirect the discussion. Our primary issue is more basic than resolving the incongruities of Trinitarian doctrine. Rather than ask how the Trinity can be so, we should ask why it must be so. “We ask, “Why must Jesus be divine? Can we verify the necessity of this belief?”
A few centuries ago, European philosophers commonly felt that a conjecture was proven if it could be shown to be equivalent to an assertion made by Aristotle. Unfortunately, such an approach stopped short of challenging Aristotle and discovering truth. Similarly, resting the Trinitarian case on what people have said about Jesus stops short of establishing the integrity of the authorities and the truth of the matter.
Our purpose here is no more than the illustration that belief in the Trinity can only be based on Church authority. Many Christians admit that this is the case while others insist that the teaching was elaborated by Jesus himself. “Let them produce their proof,” is the repeated admonition of the Qur’an, that is, ‘provide the documentation that Jesus himself claimed unqualified deity,’ (Qur’an 21:24). Unless this evidence can be produced, authorities are subject to challenge. Then the Christian may not evade
Did the Jew’s Understand? – COMPARISON BETWEEN CHRISTIAN AND ISLAM SCRIPTURES
Surprisingly enough, it is often conceded that individual verses are insufficient, inconclusive, or even unusable in the case made for the divinity of Jesus. However, there are those who insist that while any given verse may be deficient, it is the total collection of all such verses that proves the case. This betrays a misunderstanding of the reasoning process. Each verse must prove something, or it is dispensible. Given a verse, we must demand to know exactly what it does prove, and why. Christian exegesis, the traditional explanation of scripture, has been exposed as incredible within the church itself. It has been shown to be enthymemic in the extreme. That is, premises and conclusions are not clearly stated. (Exactly what is meant by the
“redemption of man” is still not clear to this date.) Whether we probe the roots or the outgrowth of the system, the structure becomes vague. (See for example. THE MYTH OF GOD INCARNATE, a Christian publication. )
A final argument has been offered based on the understanding of the Jews. Christians have said that our rebuttal given here is unimportant because the Jews understood Jesus to grasp at equality with God. They cite John 5:18, ” … because … (he) was calling God his own Father, making himself equal with God.” They pass over the verses which follow immediately, where Jesus subjected himself to God, naming those things which God gave him.
No grounds for their accusation. – COMPARISON BETWEEN CHRISTIAN AND ISLAM SCRIPTURES
They cite the tenth chapter of John where the Jews tried to stone Jesus for blasphemy. The point of the reply Jesus made is neglected. He demonstrated to those Jews, by quoting their own scripture, that they had no grounds for their accusation.
Curiously enough, in their haste to put claims on the lips of Jesus, part of the Christian church constructs a very confused story. The Hebrew scriptures made reference to a Messiah and the Church says this can only mean an incarnate God and so when Jesus spoke of himself as Messiah he was blaspheming because no man can be God, according to Hebrew scriptures … or so the reasoning seems to flow together in confusion.
There is a legal point to be made here. If the Jews understood that the Messiah was to be a man who was equal to God then a man who claimed to be the Messiah could
Conclusion – COMPARISON BETWEEN CHRISTIAN AND ISLAM SCRIPTURES
We have not merely used the Bible to suit ourselves. Verses have been cited without any commitment as to their veracity. It has been our intention only to show the defects in the Christian stand which says: “Jesus claimed to be equal to God.” If we decoct the mixture said to establish that stand, we find inferior ingredients, weak evidence and specious reasoning. Our position has been narrowed enough to make almost any Christian response a step toward the Muslim’s position. We have cited the most quoted and clear scriptures, so if any others are brought forward. the Christian admits the deficiency of previous arguments, and thus makes a short list even shorter … the list of quotations said to prove his case. Or, if the Christian builds a case on something other than the words attributed to Jesus, he repeats exactly what we first protested: mainline Christianity is based on what people have said about Jesus.
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