Thursday, 29 October 2009

Yahya Snow and the Prophet in John 1: 19-21 an Example of the Inconsistency of Islamic Apologetics

An interesting debate that has taken up in recent weeks concerning the prophet in John 1: 19-21 has been heavily stirred up by a certain Muslim named Yahya Snow. Yahya much like most of his muslim buddies would attempt to argue that this particular prophet is no one else but prophet Muhammad.

In this post I will not address the actual details of the debate; my brothers, Sam Shamoun, David Wood and Semper Paratus have already effectively refuted Yahya Snow and smashed his arguments to pieces:

However, I want to address another particular problem with Yahya Snow's methodology, which is typical of muslim apologetics as a whole, and which I have already posted on

The problem with the Muslim approach here, is that in Muslim apologetics, the Gospels reveal a progress in corruption: Mark being the earliest Gospel, being the least corrupted and hence the most islamic Gospel. Followed by Matthew and Luke, which are slightly more corrupted and embellished (such as the inclusion of the virgin birth, which unfortunately for the muslim is found in the Qur'an) and finally joined by John's Gospel which is the ultimate corruption (according to Muslims and other critics) and which according to Muslims has included a number of trinitarian details, teachings contradictory of the Qur'an, narratives and ideas; but unfortunately also references that according to muslims may support the Qur'anic position, such as the reference to the three: Christ, Elijah and the prophet, including the 'paraclete' in John 14: 16-17, which muslims mistake for Muhammad the prophet of Islam.

The question I always ask is, why is the Paraclete not found in Mark's Gospel? And why is the reference to the prophet in John 1: 17-21 not found in Mark's Gospel.

Muslims cannot simply state that parts of John's Gospel are parts of the Injeel along with parts of Mark's Gospel! Firstly because many of these passages such as John 1 related to the prophet is narrative, in that case the original Injeel was not a book from heaven but a human narrative.

Furthermore, based upon the progressive-corruption argument held by muslims, muslims can only appeal to Mark's Gospel, and therefore prove themselves inconsistent if they move even onto Matthew or Luke.

Either they cannot hold to the view of progressive corruption, and the Muslim can then pull verses out of context whereever he desires from the four Gospels (which in itself is embarrasing) and which they do, but which then implies that he (the muslim if he is consistent) needs to consider the Christological and Trinitarian sayings of Jesus in John's Gospel also.

Or the Muslim can hold to progressive-corruption, but then the prophet in John 1: 17-21 is completely futile for their argument, and then the Qur'an refers to a corrupted passage when claiming that Muhammad was predicted in the Gospel, which implies that the Paraclete in John 14 is not an argument the muslim can appeal to provide proof for a prediction of Muhammad in the Gospel.

So, go ahead muslim, which view do you hold to? Be consistent. However, it is obvious that whatever view the Muslim adheres he will yet again shoot himself in the foot.

Saturday, 24 October 2009

The Qur'an and the Big Bang Theory: Seven Easy Questions for the Muslim

As I am preparing my youtube videos on the Qur'an and modern science, I would first wanna hear the Muslim opinion and interpretation on this particular passage in the Qur'an:

Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth were of one piece, then We parted them, and we made every living thing of water? Will they not then believe? (Sura 21: 30)’

Do Muslims actually believe:

1) That the heaven and earth were fused in cosmological time?

2) That the earth actually separated from this primordial entity?

3) That this view of the Qur'an correlates with modern science?


4) Who are these disbelivers?

5) How did the disbelivers know something that modern science has just recently revealed?

6) If the disbelivers already knew, what makes this passage in the Qur'an so special?

7) If the disbelievers already knew, what makes us deny the possibility that the Qur'anic author simply plagiarized this particular claim and other scientific claims from intellectuals who were contemporaries of Muhammad?

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

A New Testament Insight into Apologetics

This post introduces my own notes on my teaching on 1) apologetics; 2) how to prepare for apologetics; 3) and how to become an effective apologist. I believe Christians more than ever need to grasp the vital aspect of this ministry within the Christian community and by the grace and wisdom given by God, prepare themselves to take a stand against the desperate attacks of the opponent and falsehood.

The meaning of apologetics:

In apologetics there are two terms we need to consider:

· Apologetics = defending your faith
· Polemics = criticising the view of your opponent

Both approaches are Biblical and in most cases these two are combined into one approach.

The four primary purposes of apologetics:

1. To defend the gospel (Philippians 1: 7)
2. To communicate the gospel by means understandable to the hearers (Acts 17)
3. To give an answer to those who question our faith (Colossians 4: 6) (1 Peter 4: 15)
4. To expose falsehood (Matthew 23) (Acts 17)

Christian attitude in apologetics:

Apologists who resort to insult, personal attacks, accomplish little in their attempt to defend Christianity or expose falsehood.

· Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone (Colossians 4: 6)

· But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behaviour in Christ may be ashamed of their slander (1 Peter 3: 15-16)

However we need also to consider the attitude of Jesus to those who were willing to communicate with him yet with the sole intention to insult, humiliate or attack him (Matthew 12: 24, 38) (16: 1). Jesus knew these types of people, to whom he often engaged with by appealing to polemics (Matthew 23) and spoke with harsh words (Matthew 12: 39) (Matthew 23) (Luke 11: 37-52). On some occasions he decided simply to ignore these and move on (Matthew 15: 12-14) (16: 4). Jesus referred to these are wicked (Matthew 16: 4), blind (Matthew 15: 14), hypocrites (Matthew 23: 27-28) and even brood of vipers (Matthew 23: 33). Whether you like it or not, there is a place for this within Christian communication towards certain categories of opponents. Yet in the light of 1 Peter 3: 15-16 we need to act wisely. Also note that insult is not to be misunderstood as challenging or exposing your opponent.

Preparation for apologetics:

Be ready spiritually: Jesus Christ needs to be the focus of your life:

But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord (1 Peter 3: 15)

A good apologist keeps his spiritual life intact. In other words Christ being Lord of our life and our life and our belief has to correspond: ‘If we claim to have fellowship with him yet walk in darkness we lie and do not live by the truth’. The word used here is ‘pseudometa’; which implies that unless Jesus is Lord of our life we simply lie to ourselves. Jesus emphasises this in the Gospel: ‘why do you call me Lord, Lord and do not do what I say’ (Luke 6: 46)? That is ‘pseudometa.’ Rather we should practice as Paul reinforces: ‘So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him’ (Colossians 2: 6). Notice here how conversion, life and faith has to correspond.

· ‘...aim for perfection, listen to my appeal, be of one mind, live in peace. And the God of love and peace will be with you’ (2 Corinthians 13: 11)
· ‘Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put into practice. And the God and peace will be with you’ (Philippians 3: 9)
· ‘Keeping a clear conscience’ (1 Peter 3: 16)

Conclusion: Holy lifestyle and a Christ-like attitude is essential for a successful apologist

Be rooted in your faith:

This is applies to the Christian to know his faith and be strong in his faith. The Bible commands us to be strong and rooted in our faith:

· Be on your guard: stand firm in the faith (1 Cor.16: 13)
· I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments. For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in spirit and delight to see how orderly you are and how firm your faith in Christ is. So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness. See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy which depends upon human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ (Colossians 2: 4-8)

Be courageous:

We need a lot of boldness as Christians to face the society we live in, be it in a college, in a university or a work place. It is a fact the community, the authorities, the education system and the media almost work collectively to derive us from the freedom to speak and hold onto our opinion, and indeed to study and research Christianity from a positive standpoint. Furthermore these aspects of society frequently question the Christian faith and undermine it. Now wonder so many Christians are driven by fear and hence fail to stand up for their belief, which they realise might cause them to fail in any given work or study, while the reality is that our fear hinders our progress. If we want breakthrough, risks have to considered and contrary to what Christians often tend to perceive, the common person is often impressed with our courage.

The Bible says:

· Do not fear what they fear; do not be frightened (1 Peter 3: 13)
· Be on your guard: stand firm in the faith: be men of courage: be strong (2 Cor. 16: 13)

Be ready time- wise:

That apologetics is a tool and skill we need to be ready to practice spontaneously at anytime only reveals how urgent this aspect is in the life of every Christian. We read:

· Always...(1 Peter 4: 15a)
· prepared (1 Peter 4: 15b)

Be prepared with and know your information:

Know the Bible:

· ...go make disciples of all nations...teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you (Matthew 28: 16)

· They devoted themselves to the apostles teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer (Acts 2: 42)
· Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom (Colossians 3: 16)
· You will know how people ought to conduct themselves in God’s household, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and foundation of truth (1 Timothy 3: 14)
· But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you have learned it, and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work (2 Timothy 14-17)

Know the sources of your opponents:

Paul’s sermon at Areopagus reveals that he possessed an excellent insight into the books and beliefs of the Greek ideas and philosophies (Acts 17). This requires Christians to possess knowledge about atheism, Islam and other views that oppose the Christian faith.

Organising your study:

The Christian needs to engage in study and daily set of time for study and research; here are a few vital categories of studies:

· Topic study (topics and verses that cover a number of doctrinal topics and then to memorize them within a specific amount of time)

· Context study (find methods that help you to memorize the context and the passages, and methods that provide you with insight into the structure of the Biblical books.

· Set of time to gain inside into philosophy, science, church history and other religions

The purpose with this is:

· that you may know how to answer everyone (Colossians 4: 6)
· ...always be prepared to give an answer to everyone (1 Peter 3: 15)

Friday, 16 October 2009

Oral Transmission and Bible Memorization

Bible memorization and memorization of information is the ambition of my life; my foremost goal at the present moment is to memorize the entire New Testament and in future to do so in Greek language also.

Why do I believe this to be so vital? I believe this is the strenght and the impetus that constitutes effective ecclesiastical training, accurate doctrine and successful dealing with the external factor, such as mission, apologetics and debating.

Currently, many Christians engage themselves in memorization, whether through straight through repetitition:

Or memorization technics:

We know that Christians in China and other Communist countries have not had much choice but to emphasize memorization since these atheist regimes have either banned or reduced the spread of Bibles.

There are a number of stories in the Chinese underground church how one Bible or a part of it has circulated from one church to the other and been memorized.

Memorization proved a vital part in the early Christianity.

Prior to the writing of Mark, the Christians utilized a oral transmission, which today is included in the four Gospels. However, memorization in the first, second and third century church continued to utilize the oral transmission alongside the written transmission.

The early church father Ireneaus (120-190 AD), the disciple of Polycarp (70-150 AD) who himself was a disciple of John the apostle (died 90/95) the disciple of Jesus, records a number of details relating to memorization and oral transmission. In his Against Heresies, Book 3, chapter 3 and verses 2-3 he records from the line of Roman successors and narrators:

‘...the very ancient, and universally known Church founded and organized at Rome by the two most glorious apostles, Peter and Paul...The blessed apostles, then, having founded and built up the Church, committed into the hands of Linus the office of the episcopate. Of this Linus, Paul makes mention in the Epistles to Timothy. To him succeeded Anacletus; and after him, in the third place from the apostles, Clement was allotted the bishopric. This man, as he had seen the blessed apostles, and had been conversant with them, might be said to have the preaching of the apostles still echoing [in his ears], and their traditions before his eyes. Nor was he alone [in this], for there were many still remaining who had received instructions from the apostles... To this Clement there succeeded Evaristus. Alexander followed Evaristus; then, sixth from the apostles, Sixtus was appointed; after him...

Hence Clement of Rome the bishop of Rome and an apostolic successor was in position to memorize and recite the apostolic tradition.

Irenaeus himself records in the Fragments of the Lost Sayings of Irenaeus, chapter 2, how he sat under the influence of Polycarp the successor of John the apostle and memorized the traditions:

‘...I then listened to them attentively, and treasured them up not on paper, but in my heart; and I am continually, by God's grace, revolving these things accurately in my mind’.

Indeed Irenaeus records in Fragments of the Lost Sayings of Irenaeus, chapter 2 how Polycarp had engaged in memorization from the apostles, those who were eyewitnesses and hearers of Jesus:

‘...and how he would call their words to remembrance. Whatsoever things he had heard from them respecting the Lord, both with regard to His miracls and His teaching, Polycarp having thus received [information] from the eye-witnesses of the Word of life, would recount them all...

We read here of two lines of successors, both lines leading us back to the apostles and then to Jesus, of which both lines of successors are engaged in memorization.

Of similar lines of successors we could refers to Papias who memorized the ‘The Living and Abiding Word’ (that is information transmitted by an eyewitnesses of the account and under his control) from John the Elder and Eyewitnesses and disciple of Jesus (Eusebius, The History of the Church Book 3, chapter 39).

Irenaeus confirms in Irenaeus in his Against Heresies, Book 3, chapter 4, verse 1, that in 180 AD the oral transmission is still so intact within the church, that even with no Bible the oral preservation of the Gospel would be sufficient to preserve the entire tradition:

For how should it be if the apostles themselves had not left us writings? Would it not be necessary, [in that case,] to follow the course of the tradition which they handed down to those to whom they did commit the Churches?

As Christians we need to continue with this practice; we need to consider its importance in equipping the teachers, the preachers, the apologists and the average Christian. Furthermore, we need to consider this practice if it should come as far that the Christian community in the West should be persecuted and the Bible banned.

Sunday, 11 October 2009

Has the Injeel been corrupted: A challenge to Etheshaam

This is mainly a response to Gulam Etheshaam and a refutation of his response to my previous thread. In my previous thread I considered three foundational answers to a muslim who claimed that the Injeel is corrupt. Etheshaam replies back in the comments as a response to my third answer, in which I stated that the Qur'an itself does not include the idea that the Injeel has been changed and was in fact intact in Muhammad's own time.

Etheshaam replies:

"if the Injeel is corrupt, how will the Muslim respond to his own book, the Qur'an, which does not state that the Injeel was corrupted, but rather attests to its preservation and accuracy Muhammad's era. "I don't know how many times I Have to say it, The Quran 4:157-- clearly says the New Testament is corrupt. The Quran is talking about the Gospel of Jesus (which We don't have) not the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John or Paul.

Hogan Elijah replies:

Firstly, lets consider what the Qur'an truly says:

“If you Muhammad are in doubt regarding that which we have revealed to thee, ask THOSE who READ the BOOK from BEFORE YOU” (Sura 10:94).

In this passage Muhammad is to approach those who read the previous revealation and consult with them if he is in doubt. Now elaborate on this for a while: Muhammad has received and is receiving the superior book, the Qur'an (according to the muslim view), why does he need to consult those who follow a corrupted book? Unless of course, the previous book is not corrupted.

...whom they find written in the Torah and the Gospel that IS WITH THEM (Sura 7:156-157)

In this passage we find the claim that Muhammad is found in the Torah and the Gospel. In fact he is found in neither of these, but we know which passages the Qur'an is referring to. The passage of greatest interest is John 14: 16, which refers to the paraclete, the comforter, which in its Aramaic wording was used for a councellor or an advocate but also for the Holy Spirit.

What is interesting here is that the Qur'an is here referring to the fourth Gospel, the Christological and Trinitarian Gospel, the Gospel that Muslims hate the most. This blows away completely the Muslim view that there was a gradual corruption in line with some source critical theories, in which the muslim argues that the Gospel of Jesus was corrupted into Mark's Gospel and then embellished into Matthew and Luke, which then implies that the virgin birth is a corruption and hence debunks the Qur'an, and which finally led to the fabrication of John's Gospel, which the Qur'an actually refers to as the Word of God. Perhaps Etheshaam can be consistent here and explain to us why the Paraclete is not found in Mark's Gospel or why the Qur'an is referring to John not Mark.

In fact, this answers Etheshaam's question: 'where is the Gospel of Jesus', well the Qur'an is quite explicit here, the Gospel of Jesus is the particular Gospel which supposedly predicts the comming of Muhammad, in other words, the Gospel of John; how more simple can it be.

Sura 7: 156-7 clearly says: ...the Gospel that is With them

Hence a Gospel that the Christians possessed and used in Muhammad's time. This clearly confirms that the Gospel of John is the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

“Say, O people of the book! You are not founded on anything until you PERFORM the TORAH and the GOSPEL, and what was revealed to you from your Lord” (Sura 5:68-71)

This implies, that I a Christian am to follow my book, the Injeel and if a Jew, I am to follow the Torah. Why would Allah reveal anything near this line of reasoning if the Injeel was corrupted? Would Allah not rather warn us clearly to throw the previous revelation in the bin, rather than revealing something like this?

We find nothing the Qur'an that warns us against the Injeel or states that the written Injeel is corrupted, what we find are passage like these that confirm its reliability and preservation.

Here the Qur'an urges me to follow my book. Now consider this: am I to listen to Allah or Ethesham?

Be courteous when you argue with People of the Book except with those among them who do evil. Say: “ We believe in that which is revealed to us and which was revealed to you. Our God and your God is one”. (29:46)

This Sura 29: 46 is for the Muslim, it basically instructs and commands the Muslim to believe in the Injeel as it is read in Muhammad's time. Notice that according to this passage Etheshaam and other muslims are being disobedient to their own book and the command of Allah when they argue with the Christians and disbelieve the previous revelations.

Thus this attempt of muslims to attack previous revelations and the book of the Christians is a clear violation of the command of Allah, these are disobedient Muslims who do not understand nor follow their own book.

O ye who believe! Believe in Allah and his Messenger, and the SCRIPTURE WHICH HE SENT TO HIS MESSENGER, AND the SCRIPTURE WHICH HE SENT TO THOSE BEFORE (HIM). Any who denieth Allah, His angels, His BOOKS, His messengers, and the day of judgement, hath gone fare astray (Sura 4:136)

Can it be more simple, a Muslim who doubts the previous revelations, has gone astray. How am I to understand this? I can only conclude either that Muslim like Etheshaam are either not Muslims or are deceived Muslims.

If I am wrong about these passages, I want Etheshaam to prove to me from the Qur'an or from the words of Muhammad himself, not Abbas, Tabari or any other scholar, but from the Qur'an or Muhammad's own words how these verses are to be understood otherwise, but it has to be a clear rejection (from the Qur'anic context) of the clarity of these passages.

Ethesham brought up Sura 4: 157 which reads:

That they say in boast “We killed Christ Jesus the son of Mary the apostle of Allah”; but they killed him not nor crucified him, but so it was made appear to them and those who differ therein are full of doubts with no certain knowledge but only conjecture to follow for of a surety they killed him not (4: 157-159).

Etheshaam concludes that this passage proves that the Injeel is corrupted, however where does the passage say that? It says that Christians follow conjecture when they say this, yet it does not imply that their book is corrupted.

There are a number of problems here:

Where in this passage does it imply that that the Injeel is corrupted?

If this implied Bible corruption, would that not contradict all the previous passages?

It seems much more likely that the author of the Qur'an considers this to be an idea that flourished among the Christians but not a doctrine included in their revelation, otherwise the passages I quoted earlier are deceptive and are bound to lead both Christians and Muslims to hell.

In other words, the author of the Qur'an is being inconsistent here and limited in knowledge; this is an error that clearly reveals that the author of the Qur'an was a human being.

I want to challenge Etheshaam to present to us a passage from the Qur'an that clearly and explicitly says something like: the Injeel on a universal level has been corrupted by writing

If he fails to do so, Etheshaam has simply lost in this matter.

When a Muslim asks me: Is the Injeel corrupted?

When a Muslim asks me: what do you answer to the claim that the Injeel is corrupted, I answer with

Firstly: Define corruption? To what extent do you mean corrupted? Are you referring to local corruption or universal? Are you referring to the term 'corruption' often utilized within the field of Biblical criticism, which is slightly different from the typical muslim understanding of the word?

Secondly: Prove from primary sources that the modern muslim view of Bible corruption took place:

I want to know 1) who corrupted it, their names 2) where it was corrupted, the city and country, 3) when it was corrupted, which year, which century, 4) how it was corrupted, 5) why it was corrupted.

I would ask the muslim to provide primary sources for all these three.

Now the Muslim might refer to textual criticism and claim that corruption took place gradually. However, the corruption referred to in textual criticism is a completely different matter than the corruption pre-supposed by modern muslims.

Within textual criticism there is doubt about the 5 procent of the NT, this is not to say that remaining is corrupt, but rather that we do not have sufficient lacks the earliest attestation and cannot be effectively composed by the manuscripts, unfortunately for the muslims this does not imply that meaning of these passages are corrupted or missing. Hence this remaining part is left for our own individual belief or disbelief. Thus it would still confirm that Jesus died and resurrected, it would leave within the gospel the narrative and the sayings; this would hardly fit the nature of the Book Allah gave to Jesus.

Now the Muslim may go beyond textual criticism to source criticism, however now were are gona have a number of problems; firstly, this approach is utterly speculative, yet if factual as many muslims claim, it would would exclude Jesus' miracles, virgin birth (which are found in the Qur'an), it would exclude the paraclete (the presupposed Muhammad); it would leave utterences related to Jesus being the Son of God and Jesus being the one to baptise in the Holy Spirit as intact, which both contradict the Qur'an.

Hence if the modern muslim theory of corruption took place, the muslim needs to consider the five questions I asked earlier.

Thirdly: if the Injeel is corrupt, how will the Muslim respond to his own book, the Qur'an, which does not state that the Injeel was corrupted, but rather attests to its preservation and accuracy Muhammad's era.

Saturday, 10 October 2009

Muslim Debate and Rhetoric

In all my years engaging in muslim apologetics and debating I have noticed a certain three-fold trend in the way many (though not all) Muslims interact with Christians in dialogue, namely the habits of 1) asking questions or making strong claims followed by an 2) unwillingness to either allow the Christian to respond or let the Christian speak but not listen to his answer, followed by 3) changing the topic by bringing up another claim.

Anyone who engages with Muslims is aware of this islamic tactic of debating and the difficulty it poses to sincere and effective dialogue.

For example (and this in fact occurred in the recent talkshow on the Aramaic channel hosted by Sam Shamoun and David Wood) a Muslim brought up the claim that the prophet of Deuteronomy 18 is similar to Muhammad in action, deed and circumstances (a ridicolous claim and easily refuted). In fact the argument originally derived from the famous Islamic apologist Ahmed Deedat and provides details of such ignorant and non-scholarly nature, that most theologians find anyone promoting it a laughinstock.

This was effectively dealt with by both Shamoun and Wood in approximately 5-7 minutes. Shamoun took a scholarly approach, left out the imagination and stupitity and dealt with the passage in its historical context. The refutation totally blew the islamic use of the passage into pieces.

I was mildly speaking in shock, so was Shamoun and I guess must viewers when realising that this muslim who phoned the show had not even bother listening to the answer from Shamoun and merely began reiterating the same details.

However, this example establishes but one of the most difficult issues related to Christian-Muslim debating: why does the Muslim blindly presuppose that his view is correct which gives him the superior right to keep talking and not listening?

Personally I am more aware of this presupposed islamic superiority and choice to downplay the opponent as simply inferior, when I spend time with my Christian Pakistani friends and co-workers. These Christian brothers of mine were born and raised up in a country in which they were considered inferior and second class citizens merely due to their Christian faith. What strikes me is that it was enforced upon them to listen and listen and learn and certainly not to speak up. In words, this is the Muslim trend of dealing with e.g. Christian in a Muslim society.

This is why Muslims in UK and USA when engaging with Christians in dialogue find it difficult to engage in a proper, lengthy and focused debate, they simply do not believe in listening and learning from a non-muslim, neiter dare they. This is why dialogue with a muslim begins with any topic and quickly ends up with a topic on the other side of the spectrum; they simply do not want your answer, hence, neither can they respond to it, so the easiest way is to change the topic.

Interestingly when these Christians from muslim countries settle in England or the West, this changes drastically. These Christians who have had no choice but to remain silent and humbly listen, have decided to turn the tables, now it is their turn to get vocal and it is the Muslim who has to listen, which is logical.

And it works.

We quickly notice here the effectiveness of these Christians to debate Muslims, refute and expose them since they for the first time in their entire life have the chance and freedom to speak, rather than the approach of Western Christians simply to give in for the Muslim tactic in allowing them to control the dialouge and conversation; those who grew up in Muslim countries and first hand experienced the suppression will not buy that.

My encouragement to my Christian brothers and sisters is: be bold, speak out, stand up for the truth, learn to debate. Be firm: do not listen unless the Muslim himself is willing to listen, and speak only if he is willing to listen. Get yourself used to not only to be on the defence and answer the typical rhetorical question of muslims, get used to ask the questions, demand that the muslim answers your question and make sure he stays on the topic.

Go for it, God bless

Friday, 2 October 2009

Evidences for the Qur'an: a reply to Ethesham

My dear brother Ehtesham has listed a number of evidences for Islam on his website. I will just list them here and lightly respond to them. God-willing when he provides a detailed description of all these points I will respond to them also.

Ethesham wrote:

1.) The Quran says the Bible (Both the Old and New Testaments) is corrupt. Today Scholars of the Bible say the same exact thing-- Both the Old and New Testaments(especially the New Testament) have been badly edited, corrupted and distorted over time.

Elijah replies:

The first problem with this statement is the fact that the Qur'an does not imply that the Injeel is corrupted.

Secondly, the scholars who imply this are secular and humanists who apply certain methods to exclude the supernatural aspect of the Bible. These methods are philosophical in nature not historical; furthermore, these methodologies will equally debunk the Qur'an and hence the religion of Islam.

Thirdly, Christians who apply e.g. textual criticism or redaction criticism often apply the words critic, problem, corruption (I myself do that), however these words are not meant in a way to imply the nature or extent of corruption, which the Muslim is in need of to protect his own Qur'an from the reliability of the previous revelations.

Ethesham wrote:

2.) Scienctific Miracles from the Quran. Nobody has been able to refute many Scientific claims of the Quran. This is the biggest evidence that the Quran is not from a human
rather from Allah-- the God of All.

Elijah replies:

This claims seems very odd to me. I have done extensive studies on science also in relation to Islam and Greek philosophy. The fact is that most of the science described in the Qur'an is wrong. Furthermore, these claims were also common knowledge among the ancient intellectuals who preceeded Islam.

Ethesham wrote:

3). The Miracles of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Prophet Muhammad was able to perform miracles, something a false prophet can't do or an ordinary human
can do-- there was something supernatural in him where he was able to do miracles.

Elijah replies:

Firstly I disagree with the statement that a false prophet cannot perform miracles. Many hindu holy men, satanists and spiritists perform miracles.

Secondly, the Qur'an nowhere ascribes any miracles to Muhammad, quite the opposite it claims that the only miracle of Muhammad was revelation of the Qur'an, a book whose integrity has been refuted both historically, logically, scientifically and textually.

Thirdly, even though the Hadiths records miracles ascribed to Muhammad, Ethesham and other Muslims have to agree that based upon their own methodology these are human writings and ideas that were passed on from person to person for hundreds of years. If these traditions are to be considered reliable why does Ethesham distrust the succession, transmission and preservation of the Gospel material in the first century?

Ethesham wrote:

4.) True Prophcies of the Quran. More evidence its from the divine.

Elijah replies:

I am at loss as to what prophesies we are dealing with here.

Ethesham wrote:

5). True Prophcies of Prophet Muhammad-- more evidence he is a Prophet of God.

Elijah replies:

Again, I which which prophesies we are dealing with here.

Ethesham wrote:

6) Perservation of the Quran-- Allah said he would protect the Quran (Quran 15:9). This is another miracle of the Quran.

Elijah replies:

An assessment of the Islamic material shows that Muhammad was indeed dependent upon his followers in the writing or creation of the Qur'an; hence the Qur'an seems to be more of a fabrication. The number of Greek scientific ideas, Jewish fables, and Gnostic ideas simply confirms this.

Secondly, the Hadiths reveal that Muslims and even Muhammad in Muhammad's time were unable to preserve the Qur'an. When Muhammad died the situation of the Qur'an was chaotic and much of its content had been lost.

Thirdly, when the Qur'an was compiled after Muhammad's death, a civil war almost broke out since the variaty Qur'an versions were not matching.

Forthly, the Muslim rulers decided to favour only one Qur'anic version (the one of Zaid) an inferior version and burn the remaining ones. Those who had proved themselves to the most of reciters within Muhammad's time were literally forced to hand over their qur'ans to be burned.
Sounds to me like an organised and enforced corruption, of political nature. The fact is, there is no reason to trust a trustful transmission of the Qur'an before we see the varity of these Qur'an's that existed prior to Uthman's destruction and corruption of the Qur'an and we can compare these.

Fifthly, we know that even the manuscript of Hafsa, which Uthaman utilized for the corruption of the Qur'an was later destroyed to cover up errors.

Ethesham wrote:

7) Prophet Muhammad was foretold in the Old Testament. He may have also been foretold in the New Testament as well.

Elijah replies:

There not a single reference to Muhammad in the Bible, neither in the Old or New Testament.

The prophet in the Torah is Israelite and does not apply to Muhammad neither in nature or action.

The paraclete in John's Gospel does not apply either and neither can it since Muslims claim that John's Gospel is a complete corruption and fabrication and total embellishment of primitive Christianity.

Furthermore, from a Christian point of view, the only mention of Muhammad in the New Testament is categorized under the variaty of warnings of future false prophets, who do not meet the standard or doctrine of Jesus' or apostolic doctrine.

A response and challenge to those who oppose the Christian faith.