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In the Name of God بسم الله

Ummi, The Unschooled Prophet

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Thank you Hamza for the link to this Booklet:

‘The Unschooled Prophet’ by Ayatollah Murtada Mutahhari

Quote: Gustav Lubon in his famous work: "The Civilization of Islam and the Arabs" notes:

"It is well-known that the Prophet was unschooled. This stands to reason also by appealing to inductive generalization, that if he happened to be knowledgeable, the contents and paragraphs of Qur'an would have been better interrelated. Furthermore, if Muhammad was not unschooled, he would not have been capable of propagating a new religion, for an unschooled person is better aware of the needs of the common (illiterate) people and thus is more capable of helping them to the right path.

However, whether the Prophet was schooled or unschooled, undoubtedly, he was possessing the highest degree of intellect, wisdom and awareness".

Response: --- It is my observation from the Scriptures, that God chose various Prophets from ‘where they were’ and gave them wisdom and knowledge that they didn’t before possess.

I respect that this is a Muslim website and that we have the privilege of sharing our thoughts and understanding.

I respect Muslims who follow the Quran and are willing to discuss it, --- even as I respect Trinitarians, Catholics, and others who believe as they do, but are open to discussion of the Scriptures.

However, since the ‘Former Scriptures’ were approved by the angel Gabriel as true (Surah 3:3), --- and the Quran contains the same history of the OT, --- which was given by revelation to Muhammad, --- then we are studying the same content, are we not?

When Muslims like to compare Muhammad to Moses, --- that means they are accepting Moses, --- and the giving of the Laws of the OT, to the Children of Israel, --- as well as believing in the many Prophets named in the Quran, does it not?

And with the miraculous birth of John the Baptist and the virgin birth of Jesus, --- also His ministry of healing the sick and raising the dead (Surah 3:49 and 5:110), --- and this testimony in 3:51 where Jesus says:

“Lo! Allah is my Lord and your Lord, so worship Him. That is a straight path.”

--- Then Muslims believe in Jesus as a Prophet, do they not?

I ask the question, “Why are we studying anything but the Bible and the Quran for answers?”

The method of studying God’s word is given in Isaiah 28:

10 “For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little.”

--- This is the way Scripture is written, since God knows the end from the beginning, He can inspire someone to give information in Genesis that may fit something else written in the Psalms, Isaiah, and Jeremiah, that refer to the coming of Jesus and the New Covenant.

--- Many Bibles, and especially the Study Bibles, have a ‘Cross Reference’ system which gives the reader the related verses. --- I am not sure if some Qurans have that or not, but we can easily search for words or phrases in the Quran on Quranbrowser, and get a list of verses for comparison.

We have so much ‘groundwork’ already done for us that it is up to us to ask God for guidance as we study a subject through.

If we study the background of Moses, the Prophet of the OT, --- Jesus, the Prophet of the NT, --- and Muhammad, the Prophet of the Quran, --- we should be able to recognize how God guided them, should we not?

--- So, in spite of all the opposing voices that say, ‘the former Scriptures were corrupted,’ (while the angel Gabriel approved them as true in 624 AD) --- or, ‘the Gospels were written by unknown men,’ (when the writers were identified within the Gospels and the Book of Acts) --- or the ones who say that ‘Muhammad wasn’t a Prophet,’ (who have not studied his life or his calling of God) --- or that ‘the Quran is not from God,’ (from those who haven’t read it to base an opinion on what is written, or they would see that the stories of the OT and NT are repeated in the Quran).

--- And the big question: --- ‘Did Muhammad start a new religion, or restore the Faith to that of Abraham, whom God said had the ‘true religion’?

2:124 And (remember) when his Lord tried Abraham with (His) commands, and he fulfilled them, He said: Lo! I have appointed thee a leader for mankind. (Abraham) said: And of my offspring (will there be leaders)?

130 And who forsaketh the religion of Abraham save him who befooleth himself? Verily We chose him in the world, and lo! in the Hereafter he is among the righteous.

131 When his Lord said unto him: Surrender! he said: I have surrendered to the Lord of the Worlds.

132 The same did Abraham enjoin upon his sons, and also Jacob, (saying): O my sons! Lo! Allah hath chosen for you the (true) religion; therefore die not save as men who have surrendered (unto Him).

135 And they say: Be Jews or Christians, then ye will be rightly guided. Say (unto them, O Muhammad): Nay, but (we follow) the religion of Abraham, the upright, and he was not of the idolaters.

Placid

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Hi Placid
 

 And the big question: --- ‘Did Muhammad start a new religion, or restore the Faith to that of Abraham 

 

The answer to your question is - 'neither'. 

 

The religion of Muhammad  is an 'undying' and 'continuous' entity. 

 

It never came into existence at any point in time. 

 

It was always there even before Adam.

 

Even before time began.

 

Known today as Islam, this religion means nothing but 'submission' to God. 

 

And  submission means 'FULL OBEDIENCE'.

 

God has always been deserving of our obedience.

 

This is what we should all be talking about - how we can best obey God.

This is what Islam is all about.

 

Abraham, whom God said had the ‘true religion’?

 

Abraham was not the only one who had the true religion. 

 

Every prophet had the true religion.

 

They were all sent by God to preach nothing but the true religion.

 

Abraham, in fact, belonged to Noah's religion  [37:83].

 

Which means Abraham followed Noah's religion.

 

[37:79] Peace be upon Noah among all beings.

 

[37:80] Thus do we reward the doers of good.

 

[37:81] Indeed, he (Noah) was among our believing servants.

 

[37:82] And We drowned the rest.

 

[37:83] And to his (Noah's) group belonged Abraham. 

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‘The Unschooled Prophet’  

 

Hi Placid  

 

This has been pushed around by some Muslim groups.

 

It is not acceptable to most Shias.

 

 It is my observation from the Scriptures, that God chose various Prophets from ‘where they were’ and gave them wisdom and knowledge that they didn’t before possess.

 

Our belief is that the Prophet was the first creation of God.

 

He was the first to know everything that anyone else ever did.

 

By his own admission, Muhammad was 'the city of knowledge'.  

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I want to continue from Post one by checking the same verses in other translations about Abraham and the ‘true religion,’ (and adding verse 133).

2:124 Yusuf Ali: And remember that Abraham was tried by his Lord with certain commands, which he fulfilled: He said: "I will make thee an Imam to the Nations." He pleaded: "And also (Imams) from my offspring!" He answered: "But My Promise is not within the reach of evil-doers."

124 Sher Ali: And remember when his Lord tried Abraham with certain commandments which he fulfilled, HE said, `I will make thee a leader of men.' Abraham asked, `And from among my offspring?' God said, `MY covenant does not embrace the transgressors.'

130 Yusuf Ali: And who turns away from the religion of Abraham but such as debase their souls with folly? Him We chose and rendered pure in this world: And he will be in the Hereafter in the ranks of the Righteous.

130 Sher Ali: And who will turn away from the religion of Abraham but he who makes a fool of himself. Him did we choose in this world, and in the next he will surely be among the righteous.

131 Yusuf Ali: Behold! his Lord said to him: "Bow (thy will to Me):" He said: "I bow (my will) to the Lord and Cherisher of the Universe."

131 Sher Ali: When his Lord said to Him, `Submit', he said, `I have already submitted to the Lord of the worlds.'

132 Yusuf Ali: And this was the legacy that Abraham left to his sons, and so did Jacob; "Oh my sons! God hath chosen the Faith for you; then die not except in the Faith of Islam."

132 Sher Ali: The same did Abraham enjoin upon his sons, - and Jacob also - saying, `O my sons, truly Allah has chosen this religion for you; so let not death overtake you except when you are in a state of complete submission.'

133 Yusuf Ali: Were ye witnesses when death appeared before Jacob? Behold, he said to his sons: "What will ye worship after me?" They said: "We shall worship Thy God and the God of thy fathers, of Abraham, Isma'il and Isaac, - the one (True) God: To Him we bow (in Islam)."

133 Sher Ali: Were you present when death came to Jacob, when he said to his sons. `What will you worship after me?' They answered, `We will worship thy God, the God of thy fathers, Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac, the One God; and to HIM we submit ourselves.'

135 Yusuf Ali: They say: "Become Jews or Christians if ye would be guided (To salvation)." Say thou: "Nay! (I would rather) the Religion of Abraham the True, and he joined not gods with God."

135 Sher Ali: And they say, `Be ye Jews or Christians, then you will be rightly guided,' Say `Nay, but follow ye the religion of Abraham who was ever inclined to Allah; he was not of those who associated gods with Allah.' --- (Abraham was not an idolater, though he came from an idolatrous environment, the same as Muhammad did.)

Also the Quran makes a statement about the disciples of Jesus in Surah 3:

52 Yusuf Ali: When Jesus found Unbelief on their part He said: "Who will be My helpers to (the work of) God?" Said the disciples: "We are God's helpers: We believe in God, and do thou bear witness that we are Muslims.

52 Pickthall: But when Jesus became conscious of their disbelief, he cried: Who will be my helpers in the cause of Allah? The disciples said: We will be Allah's helpers. We believe in Allah, and bear thou witness that we have surrendered (unto Him).

So since Islam means ‘Surrender’ or ‘Submission’ unto God or Allah, --- and Muslim means ‘a surrendered one,’ --- the above verses identify Abrahamians as Muslims, --- and the Christian disciples as Muslims (surrendered ones) --- and the true followers of Muhammad who have submitted themselves to God, as Muslims, --- then we can see where it all comes together, --- We are descendants of the ‘Faith of Abraham’ in our ‘submission’ and ‘obedience’ to God.

--- However, Submission is in the heart of each individual, is it not?

--- And the works or actions that we display should flow out of that heart that is ‘submissive’ to God, so as His ‘servants,’ we do His ‘good works.’

--- As Christians we are constantly taught this, as it says in Ephesians 2:

10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

In 2:130 it says of Abraham: “And he will be in the Hereafter in the ranks of the Righteous.”

--- So it is dependent on us as individuals to follow the Faith of Abraham, is it not?

Placid

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--- So it is dependent on us as individuals to follow the Faith of Abraham, is it not?

 

 

The aqidah (set of beliefs) is the same since Adam peace be upon him but Shari'ah (set of laws) is different. Allah (God's name) decided to change his set of laws a number of times. Submitting ones are not only those who follow the same set of beliefs through nodding and agreeing but are those who are able to demonstrate this submission through following the most updated shari'ah.

Only when a man puts his personal judgment aside and follow the judgment of God, only then he will be called a submitter.

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Hi IbnSohan,

Quote from Post 5:

Only when a man puts his personal judgment aside and follow the judgment of God, only then he will be called a submitter.

Response: --- I agree, --- as I have said, the verse in Surah 5:48 says of the three religions of Abraham, --- “For each there is a divine law and a traced-out way.”

And as a Christian, I look at the two verses before it that say in Surah 5:

46 And in their footsteps We sent Jesus the son of Mary, confirming the Law that had come before him: We sent him the Gospel: therein was guidance and light, and confirmation of the Law that had come before him: a guidance and an admonition to those who fear God.

47 Let the people of the Gospel judge by what God hath revealed therein. If any do fail to judge by (the light of) what God hath revealed, they are (no better than) those who rebel.

In light of those verses that are written in the Quran, I feel that this is the ‘traced-out way’ for all Christians.

--- Do you believe there are any changes to make? --- Because it says plainly, “To fail to judge by the light of what God has revealed,” --- it would be like rebelling against His revelation, would it not?

--- Or do you believe there is something more I have to do as a Christian?

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Or do you believe there is something more I have to do as a Christian?

 

Why do you ask that question of ordinary mortals?  

 

That is a matter between God and you. 

 

We all need to do more.

And it is nobody else's business what that is.

 

Nor is anyone qualified enough to answer that question. 

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Hi Peace,

Quote from Post 8:

(I asked) Or do you believe there is something more I have to do as a Christian?

(Your response) Why do you ask that question of ordinary mortals?

That is a matter between God and you.

We all need to do more.

And it is nobody else's business what that is.

Nor is anyone qualified enough to answer that question.

Response: --- Are we not meant to teach others what God’s word says?

While we need to be submitted to God to have the assurance of our salvation, are we not qualified to answer the questions of others?

--- Some Muslims, including yourself, believe there are more things that a Christian should do to be in right relationship with God, as you implied in this statement from some time ago:

In Post 136 of the topic, ‘Trinity is not in the Bible,’ --- (You said):

Quote: For your own sake, Placid, life is short. Please don't fool yourself. Please try to recognize the truth.

--- So, in this topic, I want to recognize the truth for all of us, --- so please join in the study, and tell us the truth that you believe other Christians, and myself, may be missing.

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HI Placid

 

Most people are not aware what they need to do in order to fulfill their own covenant with God. How can they possibly advise others?

 

But if you think they could possibly help you, well then...

 

I still hold the view that you only need to ask your own conscience.  That is all.

 

God talks to everyone through their own conscience.

 

Most of us, however, either ignore or deliberately go against that advice. 

 

Your choice !

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HI Placid

 

Most people are not aware what they need to do in order to fulfill their own covenant with God. How can they possibly advise others?

 

But if you think they could possibly help you, well then...

 

I still hold the view that you only need to ask your own conscience.  That is all.

 

God talks to everyone through their own conscience.

 

Most of us, however, either ignore or deliberately go against that advice. 

 

Your choice !

I think what Placid is asking is more like; What do Muslims have Christians don't?

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I think what Placid is asking is more like; What do Muslims have Christians don't?

 

There is no homogeneity among Muslims or for that matter among Christians, Jews, Hindus and all the rest.

 

You have Muslims like Imam Hussain and you have Muslims like you know who. 

 

There is no absolute answer to that question.

Edited by PeaceLoving
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Hi Peace,

When you said, “Please don't fool yourself. Please try to recognize the truth.”

--- I was considering that very thing, --- that you were saying that Muslims have something that we Christians don’t have.

--- So since you don’t want to venture a response, I hope you will allow me to say, what we understand as truth in Christianity.

Bearing in mind that we are three religions descended from Abraham, and as has been established, the word Muslim (surrendered one), can apply to us all, --- Abraham, --- the disciples of Jesus, --- we who follow the teaching of Jesus and the Apostles, --- and Muslims who follow the Quran.

While the general thought might be that “Nobody knows who will be saved.”

--- As part of our ‘traced-out way’ as Christians, we have been given instructions.

Since you may see Muslims as following a different ‘traced-out way,’ then don’t let it bother you, --- I just want to tell you what we are taught about salvation.

The name Jesus means ‘salvation,’ or, ‘Savior.’ The name Christ means Messiah.

John the Baptist saw Jesus and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.”

In the New Testament these questions have been asked often, “What must I do to be saved?” --- “Who then can be saved?” --- “Who will inherit eternal life?” --- And the answers are given clearly. --- as in the question asked in Acts 16:

30 --- “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?”

31 So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved.”

--- So, what does it mean to believe on the Lord Jesus Christ? --- To Christians it means to accept Him as our Savior and Lord (that is the Surrender of our will to God’s will). --- Then we are to follow His teaching. He said in John 13:

34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another; as I have loved you, that you also love one another.

35 By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”

The Apostle Paul, in his teaching taught the same in the Book of Romans 10:

12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him.

13 For “whoever calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

--- And on love being the fulfillment of the OT Commandments, he said in Romans 13:

8 Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.

9 For the commandments, “You shall not commit adultery,” “You shall not murder,” “You shall not steal,” “You shall not bear false witness,” “You shall not covet,” and if there is any other commandment, are all summed up in this saying, namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”

10 Love does no harm to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfillment of the law.

Then after we go through the personal struggle of submitting our will in all of these things (I believe this ‘inner struggle’ is the original meaning of ‘Gihad,’ is it not?), --- we are given the assurance that the Holy Spirit is with us to guide us.

--- (As you said, “God talks to everyone through their own conscience.” --- and that is true, but the Holy Spirit of God insists on doing things ‘God’s way.’)

(Again, as you say, “Most of us, however, either ignore or deliberately go against that advice.”)

--- So, this is the choice. --- When we know that the Holy Spirit indwells us, as He did the Apostles, then we better be obedient, or we will have to repent later to get back to having God’s guidance again.

--- So we come to know what is expected of us and we grow in faith, and after we continue in obedience, we are given this assurance from Jesus, in John 5:

24 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him (God) who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life.”

--- (This ‘guidance’ might lead to some seven years of being criticized for your faith before you have an opportunity to tell others what Christians really believe, and how much they want to share the love and harmony that God intended for us as Children of Abraham.--- But at the same time, not changing our religion, just our dedication to do God's will, rather than our own.)

Placid

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When you said, “Please don't fool yourself. Please try to recognize the truth.”

 

Hi Placid

 

I am sorry if my comment offended you in any way. As you are aware, these discussions tend to become a little tense at times.

 

But really, I cannot see how anyone can advise another person to better themselves.

 

Most of us need to better our own selves first.  

 

I believe other people are not in the position of giving suitable advice to anyone in this matter.

 

But if someone thinks they are able to, they might like to go ahead. 

 

Regards.

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Hi Peace,

Quote: I am sorry if my comment offended you in any way.

But really, I cannot see how anyone can advise another person to better themselves.

Most of us need to better our own selves first.

Response: --- No there was no offense in any way, --- I just thought you were wanting to reveal some truth to me that I wasn’t aware of.

When you say “I cannot see how anyone can advise another person to better themselves,” --- this is the whole basis of the New Covenant. --- Jesus came with the ‘Good News’ that people could be saved through Faith in God and obedience to His teaching.

So the method is that Jesus taught the disciples, --- from whom He chose Apostles, --- then empowered them with the Holy Spirit to go into all the world with this Message of Salvation for Jews and Gentiles alike.

)When you say, “Most of us need to better our own selves first.”

--- In the natural we might do our best and make right choices, but the Scripture says, “There is a way that seems right unto man, but the end thereof, are the ways of death.” --- We cannot gain anything Spiritually until we commit our way unto God, can we?

There is a verse that is sometimes used as though it sounds negative, in Surah 5:

68 Say: "O People of the Book! ye have no ground to stand upon unless ye stand fast by the Law, the Gospel, and all the revelation that has come to you from your Lord." It is the revelation that cometh to thee from thy Lord, that increaseth in most of them their obstinate rebellion and blasphemy. But sorrow thou not over (these) people without Faith.

66 If only they had stood fast by the Law, the Gospel, and all the revelation that was sent to them from their Lord, they would have enjoyed happiness from every side. There is from among them a party on the right course: but many of them follow a course that is evil.

67 O Apostle! proclaim the (message) which hath been sent to thee from thy Lord. If thou didst not, thou wouldst not have fulfilled and proclaimed His mission. And God will defend thee from men (who mean mischief). For God guideth not those who reject Faith.

69 Those who believe (in the Qur'an), those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Sabians and the Christians, - any who believe in God and the Last Day, and work righteousness, - on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

To analyze 68 it says, ‘You have no ground to stand upon (no foundation of Faith) unless you stand fast (firmly) on the Law (for the Jews), the Gospel (for the Christians), and all the revelation that has come to you from your Lord (all the revelations given through the Prophets between the time of Moses and Jesus).

--- (That means, “Believe the whole Book” --- It says in Surah 3:

7 He it is Who has sent down to thee the Book: In it are verses basic or fundamental (of established meaning); they are the foundation of the Book: --- And those who are firmly grounded in knowledge say: "We believe in the Book; the whole of it is from our Lord:" and none will grasp the Message except men of understanding.

Notice 67, O Apostle! (Muhammad) proclaim the (message) which hath been sent to thee from thy Lord. --- (This Surah was written about the fifth year of the Hijrah, so Muhammad was to proclaim the Message of the Surahs he had received that far, and the message was for the purpose of changing lives and making them better, was it not?

And in 69 “Those who (believe in the Quran), the believing Jews, Sabians and Christians, --- any who believe in God and the Last Day, and work righteousness, - on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

--- I believe from this verse it says to Muslims the same as it says to Jews and Christians in 68, that “You have no ground to stand upon (no foundation of Faith) unless ye stand fast (firmly),” by the inspired revelations in the Quran.

This introduced Faith to Muhammad, and the Spirit from God that inspired him, Surah 42:

52 And thus have We inspired in thee (Muhammad) a Spirit of Our command. Thou knewest not what the Scripture was, nor what the Faith. But We have made it (the revelation) a light (or enlightenment) whereby We guide whom We will of Our bondmen. And lo! thou verily dost guide unto a right path,

--- It says some 60 times in the Quran, “Believe and do good works.” --- Believing has to go before good works

Since God said to Muhammad, “You verily guide unto a right path.”

--- Then is this not the ‘traced-out way,’ for Muslims? --- Back to Faith in God, and following the basic teaching of Muhammad, --- the revelations given in the Quran, which include believing in Jesus and His teaching?

Muhammad was called to be the Messenger to his own people, so he is the most qualified to teach others, is he not?

Placid

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68 Say: "O People of the Book! ye have no ground to stand upon unless ye stand fast by the Law, the Gospel, and all the revelation that has come to you from your Lord." It is the revelation that cometh to thee from thy Lord, that increaseth in most of them their obstinate rebellion and blasphemy. But sorrow thou not over (these) people without Faith.

66 If only they had stood fast by the Law, the Gospel, and all the revelation that was sent to them from their Lord, they would have enjoyed happiness from every side. There is from among them a party on the right course: but many of them follow a course that is evil.

 

Hi Placid

 

There lies the answer to your question. 

 

Follow the teachings of Jesus and you will be right.

 

They might differ from what someone else believes them to be.

 

But as long as you believe them to be true, that is what matters in the eyes of God. 

 

Regards

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Hi Peace,

Quote: There lies the answer to your question.

Follow the teachings of Jesus and you will be right.

They might differ from what someone else believes them to be.

But as long as you believe them to be true, that is what matters in the eyes of God.

Response: --- Thank you for your confidence that I am following the right Way, and this is why I accept it as true, --- because of this teaching in John 14:

6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”

--- As I mentioned, the ‘traced-out way’ for Christians, --- is to follow Jesus.

(I am just speaking as a Christian now.)

--- To go beyond what the Gospel teaches, I want to show you that Christians are given the same assurance in the Quran. --- Here Jesus said in Surah 3:

50 I have come to you with a Sign from your Lord. So fear God, and obey me.

51 "It is God Who is my Lord and your Lord; then worship Him. This is a Way that is straight."

55 Behold! God said: "O Jesus! I will take thee and raise thee to Myself and clear thee (of the falsehoods) of those who blaspheme; I will make those who follow thee superior to those who reject faith, to the Day of Resurrection.”

--- (But there is a warning in the next verse):

56 "As to those who reject faith, I will punish them with terrible agony in this world and in the Hereafter, nor will they have anyone to help."

Also there is the promise of heaven given in Surah 5:

82 Strongest among men in enmity to the believers wilt thou find the Jews and Pagans; and nearest among them in love to the believers wilt thou find those who say, "We are Christians": because amongst these are men devoted to learning and men who have renounced the world, and they are not arrogant.

83 And when they listen to the revelation received by the Apostle, thou wilt see their eyes overflowing with tears, for they recognize the truth: they pray: "Our Lord! we believe; write us down among the witnesses.”

84 "What cause can we have not to believe in God and the truth which has come to us, seeing that we long for our Lord to admit us to the company of the righteous?"

85 And for this their prayer hath God rewarded them with gardens, with rivers flowing underneath, - their eternal home. Such is the recompense of those who do good.

--- (But again there is a warning in the next verse):

86 But those who reject Faith and believe not our Signs, - they shall be companions of Hell-fire.

This is why as Christians, we can be aware that God is guiding us, --- but if we stray away, there is the same judgment for all unbelievers, --- and more severe for those who know God’s will, and don’t do it.

Placid

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Hi Peace,

Thank you for listening to what I said about our Faith, but I want to move on to an important subject in the NT that Jesus had to explain. It involves the change from the customs of Judaism to the new teaching of Jesus, and he expresses it in a few different examples.

He said, “No one puts a new patch on an old garment,” and “No one puts new wine in old wineskins.”

This is an interesting subject because it may help us understand some of the differences between Christians and Muslims

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To go back to the topic and the three religions from Abraham which are identified in Surah 5, --- and are mentioned together in verse 48, where it says:

“For each We (God) have appointed a divine law and a traced-out way. Had Allah willed He could have made you one community. --- But that He may ‘try you’ by that which He hath given you (He hath made you as ye are). So vie one with another in good works.”

--- So, the Jews, Christians, and Muslims were given specific Spiritual laws, as well as moral and community laws to live by. --- The Moral code of Conduct, the Ten Commandments, from Exodus 20, was for all generations. There has been an adjustment in the fourth commandment, ‘the day of rest and worship’ --- Sabbath means ‘seventh’ or ‘Saturday’ when the Jews worship. --- The Muslims worship on Friday, and the Christians worship on Sunday, (The first day of the week.) While the day differs, they each worship every 7 days.

--- And while God didn’t ‘appoint’ the same rules for each religion, each being separated by a few centuries, we are still to adhere to the ‘Right Religion’ that was given to Abraham, and which he passed on to his sons and grandchildren, --- are we not?

And, as it says in verse 48, this is a ‘test’ to all of us in our own religion, --- and to ‘vie’ with one another in ‘good works’ --- This is the sense of ‘trying to outdo one another, as in a race, in doing good works.’

Now with the three Prophets, Moses, Jesus and Muhammad, --- Moses was well educated in Egypt, though he received revelations and guidance from God, --- but he could not really be called Ummi. --- But the term Ummi, ‘unschooled Prophet’ could refer to both Jesus and Muhammad. --- While they had some formal training or some ‘elementary’ schooling. --- Jesus did not attend the universities or Schools of the Jews, --- or Muhammad didn’t attend any ‘higher education’ of the Arabs, --- so they could both be called, Ummi, ‘unschooled Prophets.’

The verse we want to consider, using the Yusuf Ali translation, is Surah 7:

157 "Those who follow the Messenger, the unlettered prophet, whom they find mentioned in their own (Scriptures); ― in the Law and the Gospel; ― for he commands them what is just and forbids them what is evil: he allows them as lawful what is good (and pure) and prohibits them from what is bad (and impure); He releases them from their heavy burdens and from the yokes that are upon them. So it is those who believe in him honour, him, help him, and follow the Light which is sent down with him― it is they who will prosper."

In this case, the Ummi (the word used in some translations, meaning ‘unschooled’), refers to Jesus, who is mentioned often in the OT and the Gospels, and it describes His ministry of doing good, --- also changing the law from the burden of the ‘rules’ of the Pharisees, to new freedom in His new Commandment to “Love God and love your neighbor as yourself,” because He said, “Love is the fulfilling of the Law.” --- Matthew 22:35-40.

And it mentions the Light that was sent down with Him as it says in Surah 5:

46 And in their footsteps We (God) sent Jesus the son of Mary, confirming the law that had come before him: We sent him the Gospel: therein was Guidance and Light, and confirmation of the law that had come before him: a guidance and an admonition to those who fear Allah

47 Let the people of the Gospel Judge by what Allah hath revealed therein. If any do fail to judge by (the Light of) what Allah hath revealed, they are (no better than) those who rebel.

--- (And these verses precede our theme verse, 5:48.)

First John the Baptist came as forerunner with the Message, in Matthew 3:

1 In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea,

2 and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!”

--- Shortly thereafter, Jesus came with the same Message in Matthew 4:

17 From that time Jesus began to preach and to say, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

--- So the Message was the same, but Jesus began to gather disciples to follow Him, and this aroused the suspicion of the Pharisees.

They had every right to control their territory, and this Man from Galilee came in their midst, He had wisdom and charisma, but He had not attended their schools or studied to be a Rabbi, so they began to follow Him around to make sure He wasn’t violating their rules.

(More later)

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(To continue with the suspicion and wariness of the Pharisees at the new ministry that was starting in Israel.)

The Temple in Jerusalem was the main center of worship for all the Jews and they came from whatever country they lived in for certain feast days. --- There were many genuine believers among them but what we hear of the scribes and Pharisees is usually negative.

The example of a genuine couple is Zecharias and Elizabeth, recorded in Luke as well as Surahs 3 and 19.

He was a Priest who took his turn serving in the Temple and he was praying for a son, --- and it says this in Luke 1:

5 There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the division of Abijah. His wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.

6 And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless.

7 But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they were both well advanced in years.

8 So it was, that while he was serving as priest before God in the order of his division,

9 according to the custom of the priesthood, his lot fell to burn incense when he went into the temple of the Lord.

10 And the whole multitude of the people was praying outside at the hour of incense.

11 Then an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the right side of the altar of incense.

12 And when Zacharias saw him, he was troubled, and fear fell upon him.

13 But the angel said to him, “Do not be afraid, Zacharias, for your prayer is heard; and your wife Elizabeth will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John.

So we know that John’s ministry was from God, and it said in Matthew 3:

1 In those days John the Baptist came preaching in the wilderness of Judea,

2 and saying, “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand!”

3 For this is he who was spoken of by the prophet Isaiah, saying:

“The voice of one crying in the wilderness:

‘Prepare the way of the Lord;

Make His paths straight.’” (Isaiah 40:3)

4 Now John himself was clothed in camel’s hair, with a leather belt around his waist; and his food was locusts and wild honey.

5 Then Jerusalem, all Judea, and all the region around the Jordan went out to him

6 and were baptized by him in the Jordan, confessing their sins.

--- Can you imagine so many people coming out to be baptized? --- And being baptized after making a profession of faith in God, was particular to the New Covenant that was coming. --- John was the forerunner of Jesus, --- and this was a revival among the people, to profess their faith in God, repent, and be baptized. --- (And the Pharisees were watching.)

--- Baptism was the new ordinance and it was an open testimony of believers, and it kind of replaced the practice of circumcision. --- All the Jews were circumcised, and we know that the Jews continued to be circumcised, because, even years later when Paul was traveling as a missionary and wanted to take the young man Timothy with them, Paul circumcised him, because they were working among the Jews, Acts 16:1-3.

--- And along with the crowds, Jesus came and was baptized by John.

Placid

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To continue:

Jesus was baptized by John and began teaching as well, and His ministry had been prophesied in Isaiah 61:

1 “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me,

Because the Lord has anointed Me

To preach good tidings to the poor;

He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted,

To proclaim liberty to the captives,

And the opening of the prison to those who are bound;

2 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”

--- (So Jesus had the power of the Holy Spirit of God to heal the sick and cast out evil spirits.)

--- And the fulfillment is in Luke 4:

14 Then Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit to Galilee, and news of Him went out through all the surrounding region.

15 And He taught in their synagogues, being glorified by all.

16 So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read.

17 And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written:

18 “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,

Because He has anointed Me

To preach the gospel to the poor;

He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted

To proclaim liberty to the captives

And recovery of sight to the blind,

To set at liberty those who are oppressed;

19 To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”

20 Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him.

21 And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.”

22 So all bore witness to Him, and marveled at the gracious words which proceeded out of His mouth. And they said, “Is this not Joseph’s son?”

--- (This was in Galilee, and He went out from there to Syria as well), Matthew 4:

23 And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the Gospel of the kingdom, and healing all kinds of sickness and all kinds of disease among the people.

24 Then His fame went throughout all Syria; and they brought to Him all sick people who were afflicted with various diseases and torments, and those who were demon-possessed, epileptics, and paralytics; and He healed them.

25 Great multitudes followed Him—from Galilee, and from Decapolis, Jerusalem, Judea, and beyond the Jordan.

--- (His healing and deliverance ministry is recorded in Surah 3:49 and Surah 5:110.)

When He went to Judea and began calling disciples, the Pharisees followed Him and reported on His activities.

He had called Peter and Andrew, James and John, Philip and Nathaniel (Bartholemew), --- and then He called Matthew (Levi), the tax collector and businessman. --- This is recorded in Luke 5:

27 After these things He (Jesus) went out and saw a tax collector named Levi, sitting at the tax office. And He said to him, “Follow Me.”

28 So he left all, rose up, and followed Him.

29 Then Levi gave Him a great feast in his own house. And there were a great number of tax collectors and others who sat down with them.

30 And the scribes and the Pharisees complained against His disciples, saying, “Why do You eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”

(Will continue from here later)

Placid

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This is interesting, that the Pharisees could even follow Jesus and the disciples to a private party, --- which was in the house of Levi, the tax collector, Luke 5:

29 Then Levi gave Him a great feast in his own house. And there were a great number of tax collectors and others who sat down with them.

30 And the scribes and the Pharisees complained against His disciples, saying, “Why do You eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”

The first thing to notice is that the tax collectors or ‘publicans’ were disliked by everyone. --- They were considered to be traitors to the Jews because they collected taxes for the Roman Government, which kept Rome in power. --- There were different classes, some were honorable and wealthy because of their business or location. --- Others were considered as the lowest in their profession.

--- Part of the reason for the ill feeling was that: --- First of all, nobody likes a tax man. --- Secondly, the taxes were for the Romans rather than for their own community or for the Jews. --- Thirdly, was the way they were levied. --- The Roman Government said each person should pay a basic amount. --- Then the tax collector could add his fee on top, --- so if he was greedy, he would collect more and become rich with no compassion for his fellow man.

So they were hated, --- and even the other disciples might have, at first, had difficulty adjusting to a tax collector as one of them.

However, Levi, or Matthew, was well educated and a businessman, and perhaps had different contacts with Jesus before Jesus called him, --- and it is understood that Matthew became the ‘secretary’ or recorder, and wrote a first Gospel in Aramaic. --- He would perhaps be writing even as Jesus spoke to people. --- Furthermore, since they travelled together, Matthew could correct anything he had written.

So, the Pharisees were there observing, and it says this,

30 And the scribes and the Pharisees complained against His disciples, saying, “Why do You eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”

A fair question, --- If Jesus came as a righteous Leader, or the Messiah, what was He doing associating with the wealthy and the hated tax collectors, and others, who were obviously sinners? --- And what was He doing by exposing His disciples to them as well?

--- And the disciples didn’t answer, but the question got to Jesus, so,

31 Jesus answered and said to them, “Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick.

32 I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance.”

The scribes and Pharisees would consider themselves to be righteous, so His answer would have satisfied them, and it prompted them to ask more questions.

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I don't see a logical contradiction here. Someone who is a "city" of primordial knowledge doesn't need to have formal school education. At the same time, someone who never went to school, despite being a repository of cosmic knowledge, may be able to relate better to simple people who also didn't have formal education and relied more on intuition.

 

 

 

Hi Placid  

 

This has been pushed around by some Muslim groups.

 

It is not acceptable to most Shias.

 

 

Our belief is that the Prophet was the first creation of God.

 

He was the first to know everything that anyone else ever did.

 

By his own admission, Muhammad was 'the city of knowledge'.  

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Hi Yoel

 

You are perfectly right that wisdom does not require formal education.

 

However, the word 'unschooled' is actually a mis-translation.

 

What Sunnis say is not that he did not go to school, rather that he was illiterate and could neither read nor write.

I was just comparing the difference in the views of Sunnis and Shias.

 

While Sunnis say that  the Prophet could not read or write, we Shias believe he could.That is all. 


By the way, have you had the opportunity to see the updates to the thread Islam-101 at the top of this forum?

 

Some more articles have been added :-

  • Good Governance in Islam - a superbly written  document of government from Imam Ali to his governor-designate to Egypt, Malik.

Malik never assumed office because he was killed by Muawiya's gang before he could reach Egypt.

  • A sample collection of Imam Ali's sayings
  • Imam Zainul Abedin's extraordinary forgiveness (My brother's killer)
  • Imam Musa Kazim's incredible piety

Cheers

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Next in Luke 5, Jesus Is Questioned About Fasting

33 Then they said to Him, “Why do the disciples of John fast often and make prayers, and likewise those of the Pharisees, but Yours eat and drink?”

34 And He said to them, “Can you make the friends of the bridegroom fast while the bridegroom is with them?

35 But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them; then they will fast in those days.”

Fasting is a dedication to God of usually denying one’s self of food in a time of praying for God’s will to be known. --- John would be following the practice of the Pharisees in prayer and fasting, and the Pharisees were making a comparison to Jesus.

--- John came preaching, “Repent’ for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” --- And Jesus came with the same Message, “Repent, for the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.” --- The two men had the same Message, but John and his disciples were fasting, and Jesus and His disciples were feasting, --- (and not even with good company, according to the standard of the Pharisees.)

36 Then He spoke a parable to them: “No one puts a piece from a new garment on an old one; otherwise the new makes a tear, and also the piece that was taken out of the new does not match the old.

The Pharisees recognized this difference between John and Jesus and were watching Jesus in case He broke the Mosaic law. --- He wasn’t breaking the law, --- but He wasn’t keeping their law either, --- so they wondered. --- And what did the parable mean?

“No one puts a piece from a new garment on an old one; otherwise the new makes a tear.”

New material has not gone through the shrinking processes and if you try to patch up an old garment with it, --- and if the new piece is sewn on the old, in the adjusting, it would tear one or the other --- It is like saying the Old garment (Religion) was too rigid, and couldn’t adjust. --- The 613 laws of the Jews would have to shrink down to two major Commandments which fulfill the Law and the Prophets. --- The Commandments to Love God and love your neighbor as yourself.

In John 8, the Pharisees planned to trap Jesus and they brought a woman who was caught in adultery. They threw her down in front of Jesus and said, “The Law of Moses said to stone her, so what do You say?”

Jesus hesitated and stooped down and wrote with His finger on the ground.

‘The Letter of the Law’ said to stone her, but Jesus raised up and said, “He who is without sin among you, cast the first stone at her.”

‘And they, beginning with the oldest, down to the youngest went out.’

‘The Spirit of the Law’ showed compassion. --- But what about justice?

--- So, what did Jesus write on the ground?

It could have been the sins of the accusers, which would have convicted them.

--- Or it might have been that --- in the Law of Moses, when two people were caught in adultery they were ‘both to be stoned’ (as the elimination of the sinful ones among them, and as a deterrent to others.)

So Jesus might have written on the ground, --- Where is the man?

--- This may have exposed that it was a planned trap, --- and the man would have been one of them.

Placid

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--- I am sorry for the delay in continuing this subject, --- there is a definite conclusion that I want to get to, because here, Jesus was calling the disciples to follow Him, whom He would later commission as Apostles, and the Pharisees were concerned that they might eventually rise up in rebellion against the Pharisees, and take away their position with the Roman Government.

I had mentioned previously how they watched Jesus, even at a feast where they were not invited, --- but they were there, and they asked the disciples and Jesus about ‘feasting’ with sinners in posts 21 and 22. --- Then in 25 about fasting.

Then He went on to tell the Pharisees that His ministry was a change from their ministry, in that God originally gave the Jews rules to keep, but they only kept them for a while, --- so the old Law was being replaced with the New Law of Love.

Then Jesus told them in Luke 5:

36 “No one puts a piece from a new garment on an old one; otherwise the new makes a tear.”

This meant that God was no longer following the ‘letter of the law’, but the New Covenant, or agreement, was by ‘the Spirit of the law.’

--- Then I added the story from John 8, where they brought a woman who was caught in adultery, and they said, --- “The law of Moses said she should be stoned,

But you can read it there in Post 25.

Now there is one more Parable that Jesus uses in showing the Pharisees that the New Message of the Gospel is not compatible with the OT Law.

--- So this is the Parable from Luke 5:

37 And no one puts new wine into old wineskins; or else the new wine will burst the wineskins and be spilled, and the wineskins will be ruined.

38 But new wine must be put into new wineskins, and both are preserved.

39 And no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for he says, ‘The old is better.’”

Grapes were an important food in Israel and when they were in season they would be used fresh, both the grapes and grape juice. --- However, in order to preserve the juice they would make wine, to drink with their meals.

They would use what they called a ‘winepress,’ but it was only a grape press because they got the sweet juice, and then later they put it in ‘wineskins.’ --- At this point it was still grape juice. --- But it would go through the fermentation process in the wineskins. --- These wineskins were leather, made from goatskin and sewn into a bottle type container. --- A simple example might also be the skin off the leg of an animal, where they would tie the bottom, then fill the ‘wineskin,’ and then tie the top. It had to be fresh skin which was ‘elastic’ so it could stretch when the juice was fermenting inside of it. --- After the process was complete, the wineskins, or bottles could be kept indefinitely. --- But before the next harvest of grapes came along, these bottles would be hard. --- You could use them to carry water in, but they were no good to put the new grape juice in which would ferment in the bottles and the pressure would split them.

--- The Spiritual application was that the new doctrines and teaching of Jesus could not be applied over the Old Doctrines of the Law. They couldn’t fill up the old bottles, [the Pharisees} with the new teaching, as that would destroy them both.

But the new ‘wine,’ the Message of the Gospel was put in new bottles, or vessels (the disciples),

39. And no one, having drunk old wine, immediately desires new; for he says, ‘The old is better.’”

--- (So the Pharisees were steeped in their doctrines, and even if they tasted the ‘new wine [the Message of the Gospel with miracles and healings], --- they were ‘set in their ways,’ and would prefer what they had.

--- However, some time later there were Priests who followed Him, in Acts 6:

7 Then the word of God spread, and the number of the disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the Priests were obedient to the faith.

Placid

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To conclude the subject:

After the day of Pentecost on Acts 2 where some 3000 believed the Message of Peter and were added to the Church, there was great activity in Jerusalem.

Peter and John went up to the Temple to pray, and this happened in Acts 3:

2 And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to ask alms from those who entered the temple;

3 who, seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, asked for alms.

4 And fixing his eyes on him, with John, Peter said, “Look at us.”

5 So he gave them his attention, expecting to receive something from them.

6 Then Peter said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.”

7 And he took him by the right hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.

8 So he, leaping up, stood and walked and entered the temple with them—walking, leaping, and praising God.

9 And all the people saw him walking and praising God.

10 Then they knew that it was he who sat begging alms at the Beautiful Gate of the temple; and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.

--- (Jesus said that they would do the same healing and miracles that He did, and this was done in the Temple rather than among the body of believers.)

--- And this was the reaction of the Jewish leaders in Acts 4:

1 Now as they spoke to the people, the priests, the captain of the temple, and the Sadducees came upon them,

2 being greatly disturbed that they taught the people and preached in Jesus the resurrection from the dead.

3 And they laid hands on them, and put them in custody until the next day, for it was already evening.

4 However, many of those who heard the word believed; and the number of the men came to be about five thousand.

--- (The next day they were assembled to warn the Apostles about preaching in Jesus’ name.)

8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders of Israel:

9 If we this day are judged for a good deed done to a helpless man, by what means he has been made well,

10 let it be known to you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead, by Him this man stands here before you whole.

13 Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were uneducated and untrained men, they marveled. --- AND THEY REALIZED THAT THEY HAD BEEN WITH JESUS.

--- (This is the evidence that the Holy Spirit is the power that works through ordinary men, to do the miraculous work of God. --- The Jews identified the Apostles as ‘unschooled’ or Ummi, --- the same as Jesus.)

--- And this was the power that indwelt the Apostles as they went out from Jerusalem to various countries to preach the Gospel, heal the sick, and deliver those tormented by evil spirits. --- And the same power is given to believers today. --- Not so many do miracles, but many are healed and delivered by the power of the Holy Spirit, working through the prayers of the believers.

--- So this was the power of the Ummi.

Muhammad was also an Ummi, in that he was unschooled in religious Schools, but he, as the Apostles, was empowered by the Spirit of God, Surah 42:52.

Placid

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Hi ILove,

The context of verse 157 is from the time of Moses in Surah 7:

Shakir: 155 And Musa chose out of his people seventy men for Our appointment; so when the earthquake overtook them, he said: My Lord! if Thou hadst pleased, Thou hadst destroyed them before and myself (too); wilt Thou destroy us for what the fools among us have done? It is naught but Thy trial, Thou makest err with it whom Thou pleasest and guidest whom Thou pleasest: Thou art our Guardian, therefore forgive us and have mercy on us, and Thou art the best of the forgivers.

156 And ordain for us good in this world's life and in the hereafter, for surely we turn to Thee. He said: (As for) My chastisement, I will afflict with it whom I please, and My mercy encompasses all things; so I will ordain it (specially) for those who guard (against evil) and pay the poor-rate, and those who believe in Our communications.

157 Those who follow the Apostle-Prophet, the Ummi, whom they find written down with them in the Taurat and the Injeel (who) enjoins them good and forbids them evil, and makes lawful to them the good things and makes unlawful to them impure things, and removes from them their burden and the shackles which were upon them; so (as for) those who believe in him and honor him and help him, and follow the light which has been sent down with him, these it is that are the successful.

158 Say: O people! surely I am the Apostle of Allah to you all, of Him Whose is the kingdom of the heavens and the earth there is no god but He; He brings to life and causes to die therefore believe in Allah and His apostle, the Ummi Prophet who believes in Allah and His words, and follow him so that you may walk in the right way.

159 And of Musa's people was a party who guided (people) with the truth, and thereby did they do justice.

I chose Shakir because it mentions Ummi as well as Injeel, which is easier understood to mean the Message, rather than the 4 Books.

--- It follows a pattern from Moses who said in 155, “Thou art our Guardian,”

1n 156, “And ordain for us good in this world's life and in the hereafter, for surely we turn to Thee.”

157 “Those who follow the Apostle-Prophet, the Ummi, whom they find written down ‘with them’ in the Taurat and the Injeel”

--- (That was Jesus, who also fulfilled the law and gave freedom from the ‘burden and shackles’ of the OT laws,’ Surah 3:50. --- “And follow the ‘light’ which has been sent down with him,” Surah 5:46.)

--- Notice it says, ‘with them’ in the Taurat and the Injeel, --- and some translators start 158 this way, --- Say (Muhammad), “O people! surely I am the Apostle of Allah to you all,” --- (Then Muhammad says), “Therefore believe in Allah, --- and His apostle, the Ummi Prophet who believes in Allah and His words,”

--- In 159 he refers again to Moses where there ‘was a party who guided (people) with the truth.’

As I read this, I see Muhammad honoring Moses who prayed for God’s guidance and protection. --- Then it mentions Jesus who made changes and said in Surah 3:50 “So do your duty to Allah, and obey me.”

And then Muhammad said, “I am the Apostle of Allah to you all.”

--- So there we have it, --- Moses in his time, --- Jesus in His time, --- and Muhammad in his time.

The Jews still follow (to some degree) the laws of Moses, --- the believing Christians still follow Jesus Christ, and Muslims follow Muhammad as the last Prophet, is that not right?

In 5:48 God said, “For each We have given A DIVINE LAW, and A TRACED-OUT WAY.

--- So, I say, --- let’s follow our own ‘traced-out way.’

Placid

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So, I say, --- let’s follow our own ‘traced-out way.’

 

Hi Placid

 

Well, of course, why not? Whatever you are comfortable with? Faith is personal. The Church tried  to force its way into the hearts of people, persecuting . anyone who doubted. The  devil of the Inquisition lasted  300 years.  All to no avail.  More Christians have become atheist and agnostic in the last 100 years than the people of any other religion.  

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159 And of Musa's people was a party who guided (people) with the truth, and thereby did they do justice.

 

Hi Placid

 

I don't like the translations of Arberry and Sale that say 'of the people of Moses'.

 

I very much prefer Rodwell and Palmer both of whom say 'among' instead of 'of'.

 

The expression 'of Musa's people' does not make any sense whatsoever. I would call it s very bad translation.

 

And by the way, those who accuse Islam of anti Semitism should note that there is praise for Jews in the Quran, as in the above verse.

 

And this verse [7:159] is not  the only place.  

 

Some other examples  :-

 

[32:23] And We gave Moses the Book. So do not entertain any doubt about it. We appointed it (the Book) as a guidance to the children of Israel.

 

[32:24] And We appointed from among them leaders  when they had endured patiently  and believed in Our signs firmly.

 

God's promise to the Jews :-

 

[5:12] Indeed God made a covenant with the children of Israel and raised among them twelve chieftains. I will be with you as long as you adhere to prayer and charity and believe in my messengers, honor them. and lend to God (spend in His Way) . I will wipe out your sins (from the record of deeds) and lead you to gardens with flowing rivers.  But those who will not believe have lost the Way.  

 

Combined recognition of the good among  both Jews & Christians  :-

 

[2:69] Indeed Muslims, Jews, Christians and Sabeans - whoever believes in God and the Reckoning and does good deeds, shall have their reward from their Lord. They shall have no fear or sorrow.  

 

[3:199] And among the People of the Book are those who believe in God and the Reckoning and what has been revealed to you and to them They do not sell their faith for a paltry price. They will have their reward from their Lord.  God will settle your accounts very swiftly.

 

Respect for the houses of worship of all three Abrahamaic religions - Jews,Christians & Muslims :-

 

[22:40] Those who have been expelled from their homes wrongfully, only because they professed belief in One God. And if God had not repelled some men by others, then cloisters, churches, synagogues and mosques - wherever God is worshiped would have been destroyed.  God helps those who help Him. Indeed  God is All-Powerful and All-Mighty.  

 

Of course, with all the praise, there are heaps of reprimands and admonishments, not only for Jews, but for Christians and Muslims as well.

 

Unfortunately for non-believers (atheists and polytheists), there is no praise at all - not even once, only the promise of hell-fire and torture.  

 

And since God is just, the Quran is full of unceasing invitation to them to turn to one God.


That invitation will unfortunately be terminated at death.


So everyone has a little time.  Until the last breath!

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Hi Baqar,

As I said before, there were Covenants made with each group, which resulted in faithful followers, and those who rebelled or drifted away.
However, God made a lasting Covenant with those who remained faithful, as it says in Surah 9:
111 Lo! Allah hath bought from the believers their lives and their wealth because the Garden will be theirs: they shall fight in the way of Allah and shall slay and be slain. It is a promise which is binding on Him (God), in the Torah and the Gospel and the Qur'an. --- Who fulfilleth His covenant better than Allah? --- Rejoice then in your bargain that ye have made, for that is the supreme triumph.

Those who totally surrender to God in Faith, their lives and possessions are given to God as part of the ‘bargain.’
--- (That means that he who still runs his own life, has never submitted to God.)
And God, who keeps His promises, will reward the true believers from the Jews, the Christians, and the Muslims. --- God knows the inner thoughts and intents of the heart, and Jesus said, ‘Man looks at the outward appearance, but God looks on the heart.’

 

 

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