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In the Name of God بسم الله

Death is Defeated

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Posted (edited)

Hi There I posted this back in January with a picture but no one responded.

This weekend I have been celebrating Easter - Remembering the death and resurrection of Jesus the Messiah.  In many of the things I lisened to there was a repeated idea.  The physical resurrection of Jesus the Messiah from the dead declares that death is defeated. Paul writes about this in

1 Corinthians 15 quoting Hosea 13:14 and Isaiah

‘Death has been swallowed up in victory.’

55 ‘Where, O death, is your victory?
    Where, O death, is your sting?’

56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

What do you understand by "death is defeated"? and Does Islam proclaim that death is defeated?

Edited by Dave follower of The Way
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Salaam,

I'm no expert in this topic, but to me (and maybe to the rest of the Muslims) the idea that "death is defeated" just sounds weird. Correct me if I'm wrong, but I have the impression that death is, and I don't know why, viewed negatively in Christianity. IMO death is something natural, just like life. That fact that Christians believe that Jesus died and then resurrected, therefore he somehow "defeated death" just really seems weird to me, since other personnalities have resurrected as well (not only Jesus). Why can't we say that they deafeated death ? Why is Jesus the exception ? Besides, EVERYONE will eventually be resurrected in the Day of Judgement, where they will eventually reside and LIVE in Paradise or Hell forever. Can we also say that death has been defeated in this case ?

In Islam, there is an angel in charge of taking souls. You may have heard of him: Malak al-Mawt (The Angel of Death), or 'Izraeel. There are 2 hadiths that kind of have something to do with what you're saying. The 1st one was maybe a story regarding Imam al-Hassan (عليه السلام) when a group of Romans came to him and asked him several questions. One of the questions was: What are the ten things one of which is stronger than the other? The Imam (عليه السلام) answered beautifully:

Stone. Iron overpowers stone. Fire overpowers iron. Water overpowers fire. The clouds carry the water. The wind overpowers the clouds. The angels control the wind. The Angel of Death overpowers the angels. Death overpowers the Angel of Death, and Allah overpowers death because he is the living that does not die.

The 2nd hadith is concerning just before the Day of Judgement where every living being has died except for the Angel of Death. Allah will ordain the Angel to take his own soul. As he takes his own soul, the Angel will say: "If I knew death was so painful, I would have been more merciful on the believers."

Someone correct me please if these hadiths are correct or not. But anyways, just to show you that only Allah defeats death. If any living being is resurrected and lives forever, that is obviously thanks to the power of Allah. At least, that's what I have to say about the topic, so I hope I gave some satisfying answers.

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Posted (edited)
On 4/5/2021 at 5:48 PM, Dave follower of The Way said:

Death has been swallowed up in victory.’

55 ‘Where, O death, is your victory?
    Where, O death, is your sting?’

56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

What do you understand by "death is defeated"? and Does Islam proclaim that death is defeated?

This is a common argument given by Christians which I have always thought holds no weight when it comes to truth. This goes against reason, because according to Christian views, Jesus (عليه السلام) had to die on the cross for our salvation. If he did not die on the cross we would not have salvation according to Christianity. Regardless if the Christians claim Jesus rose after death (3 days later and 3 nights), the point is he still died according to their views. Was he not dead according to Christians for at least 3 days? So if Jesus rises from the dead how would that be any different than all of us rising from death on the day of Judgement which is a reality that both Christians and Muslims agree. This reminds me of the rational Quranic argument about Jesus the Son of Mary and Adam. Christians say one of the proofs for Jesus (عليه السلام) being divine is that he was born of a virgin mother (Mary SA). However, the Qur'an squashes this argument simply with: "The similitude of Jesus before Allah is as that of Adam; He created him from dust, then said to him: "Be". And he was. "(Qur'an 3:59). Adam (عليه السلام) had no mother nor father, yet it would be irrational to say he is divine.

 

This type of argument that Christians bring is just as weak as arguments about the trinity being similar to water. Water can be solid (ice), gas (steam) or liquid (water). First and foremost this is erroneously because it likens God to the creation by comparing God to states of water. Secondly there are causes in the creation that affects the state of water. That is to say water becomes a solid when frozen. Water becomes steam when heat is applied. Water is a liquid when neither too heated nor too cold. Since God is not affected by creation as he is As-Samad (Self sufficient whom all else gets their subsistence from) the similarly this argument falls apart as it is based on external 'accidents' that cause water to change states and God himself does not change. He is as He was before the creation of the universe (or universes).

 

Edited by MexicanVato
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On 4/16/2021 at 3:31 AM, Mohamad Abdel-Hamid said:

the idea that "death is defeated" just sounds weird.

Thank you for your response.  I too think the expression is strange because death is the one certain thing about life, but I don't think Christianity views death negatively.  Followers of Jesus are encouraged to face death with hope, joy and peace.  Paul writes in 1Thessalonians 4

13 Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope.

Death is seen as a door to realize a closer relationship with the Living God. 

People in general face death with uncertainty resulting in fear because we do not know what lies beyond.  The BIble indicates that the devil has some power over death and through death draws people into slavery.  Hebrews chapter 2

14 Since the children have flesh and blood, he (Jesus) too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might break the power of him who holds the power of death – that is, the devil – 15 and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.

On 4/16/2021 at 3:31 AM, Mohamad Abdel-Hamid said:

other personnalities have resurrected as well (not only Jesus). Why can't we say that they deafeated death ? Why is Jesus the exception ? Besides, EVERYONE will eventually be resurrected in the Day of Judgement,

I'm not sure who the other personalities are.  I agree some people die and have a 'near death experience' and come back to life.  However, these people will die again.  With Jesus the Messiah his resurrection was a completly different event.  There was no medical intervention - he was sealed in a guarded tomb.  His resurrected body, although physical - he could eat and cook and be touched, was in someway spiritual - he had the ability not to be recognised, to disapear, to enter locked rooms.  This was not Day of Judgment resurrection it was a completly different resurrection here on earth.

I like your comment about the 10 things ending with Allah overpowers death because he is the living that does not die.

When Peter (a close friend of Jesus) was explaining the death and resurecetion of Jesus he said (Acts chapter 2)

23 This man (Jesus) was handed over to you by God’s deliberate plan and foreknowledge; and you, with the help of wicked men, put him to death by nailing him to the cross. 24 But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him.

Jesus the Messiah shows us what the invisible God is like and one of God's atributes is that he is living; he has power over death.  So Jesus in rising from death shows us that he has this same atribute.

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On 4/16/2021 at 3:55 AM, MexicanVato said:

Regardless if the Christians claim Jesus rose after death (3 days later and 3 nights), the point is he still died according to their views. Was he not dead according to Christians for at least 3 days? So if Jesus rises from the dead how would that be any different than all of us rising from death on the day of Judgement which is a reality that both Christians and Muslims agree.

I appreciate your contribution it is helpful to see your perspective.  I think I have explained previously in answer to @Mohamad Abdel-Hamid  that the resurrection of Jesus the Messiah was different than the general resurrection on Judgment day.  We will be raised to stand before God and give an account of our lives.  Jesus the Messiah rose after death in order to bring his followers through that judgement ionto God's presence.

Your comment about the virgin birth is not the reason Christians see Jesus the Messiah as divine.  There are other more compeling reasons.  But your quote from the Qur'an about Adam is very relivant.  Because Adam disobeyed God he was turned out of the garden and eventually experienced a physical death.  He was made from dust and returned to dust.  In the resurrection of Jesus we see a second Adam.  He had a physical body made from dust but he did not return to dust.  Death does not have power over Jesus the Messiah.  Adam was the one who brought death to humanity.  Jesus the Messiah - the second Adam - brings eternal life to humanity.  We can be of thiose from Adam and face both physical death and spiritual death, or we can be those of Jesus the Messiah and start to enjoy the fruits of spiritual life now and face physical death with confidence.

(PS let's not talk about the Trinity here - I would never use the water analogy because like you say it has many flaws)

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23 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

I'm not sure who the other personalities are.

The widow of Zarephath’s son (1 Kings 17:17–24), the Shunammite woman’s son (2 Kings 4:18–37), the man raised out of Elisha’s grave (2 Kings 13:20–21), and others that were resurrected by Jesus, including the widow of Nain’s son (Luke 7:11–17), Jairus’ daughter (Luke 8:40–56), Lazarus of Bethany (John 11), various saints in Jerusalem (Matthew 27:50–53), Tabitha (Acts 9:36–43), Eutychus (Acts 20:7–12) and finally Jesus Christ himself (Mark 16:1–8).

23 hours ago, Dave follower of The Way said:

Jesus the Messiah shows us what the invisible God is like and one of God's atributes is that he is living; he has power over death.  So Jesus in rising from death shows us that he has this same atribute.

But the difference is that Allah/God CANNOT die, this goes against his nature. According to the Bible, Jesus did die but later resurrected, whereas God was always alive and will never die. So in a sense he doesn't really have the same attribute.

Besides, you also quoted the verse 24 But God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it was impossible for death to keep its hold on him. I think the bold text should have been in But God raised him from the dead. This verse proves that it was in fact God that resurrected the dead Jesus, and so God is the one that defeats death. So in my opinion, this goes against what you said in the next reply to @MexicanVato: "Death does not have power over Jesus the Messiah. Adam was the one who brought death to humanity. Jesus the Messiah - the second Adam - brings eternal life to humanity." In fact it is God that brings eternal life to humanity, ie the resurrector, not the resurrected.

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On 4/19/2021 at 8:27 PM, Dave follower of The Way said:

Because Adam disobeyed God he was turned out of the garden and eventually experienced a physical death.  He was made from dust and returned to dust.  In the resurrection of Jesus we see a second Adam.  He had a physical body made from dust but he did not return to dust.  Death does not have power over Jesus the Messiah.  Adam was the one who brought death to humanity.  Jesus the Messiah - the second Adam - brings eternal life to humanity.  We can be of thiose from Adam and face both physical death and spiritual death, or we can be those of Jesus the Messiah and start to enjoy the fruits of spiritual life now and face physical death with confidence.

Hi death & time of it has been set by Allah/God for everyone  since start of creation even for prophet  Adam(عليه السلام)  not because of disobeying  of prophet  Adam(عليه السلام) but as Allah/God rule which every living  out of paradise & hell will face  death which creation/birth of prophet  Isa (as)[Jrsus] was like creation  of prophet  Adam(عليه السلام) but he is not second Adam which he will dye before Imam Mahdi (aj) after second coming which after he lived some some years  on earth then he will die & will burry by Imam  Mahdi (aj) which Imam will die after him then both of them will resurrect  with all humans in judgment  day so every  human will have  physical death but their will remain until judgment  day then everyone  will enter to judgment  day & paradise  & hell with both of physical body & spirit for eternal  life in Paradise  or hell.

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Posted (edited)
On 4/16/2021 at 3:31 AM, Mohamad Abdel-Hamid said:

other personnalities have resurrected as well (not only Jesus).

Thanks for the list of people from the Bible.  As I said the resurrection of Jesus the Messiah is in a different catogory from these people.  They all rose to die again.  None of them are still with us.  However, the resurrection of Jesus the Messiah means he will never die again.  We do not have his grave.  He is alive today.  I meet with him each day as I live my life.

On 4/20/2021 at 4:50 PM, Mohamad Abdel-Hamid said:

But the difference is that Allah/God CANNOT die, this goes against his nature. According to the Bible, Jesus did die but later resurrected, whereas God was always alive and will never die. So in a sense he doesn't really have the same attribute.

Yes God cannot die - if he did the whole of creation would cease to exist as he is the one who keeps it going.

I suggest we have a number of issues here.  One of them is what is death?

The bible talks about two deaths.  One is a physical death the stopping of bodily functions.  The other is spiritual death.

The worldview of the Bible is that the real person does not cease to exist when the physical body stops working.  That real person continues to have a spiritual existance.  The second death is about the state of that spiritual dimension of a person.

The spirtual person is alive when they are in contact with God receiving spirtual susitance from him.  Spirtual death is when a person is cut off from God and living seperate from him due to their sinful nature. This does not mean their spirit ceases to exist - it is existing but seperate from God the source of true life.  In this way, at the moment Adam ate the fruit he died spiritually, because his relationship with God was broken, but he continued to live physically for many years.

In the same way many people alive today are physically alive but spiritually dead.  This is why Jesus the Messiah talked about being born again of the Spirit.

Now let's return to Jesus the Messiah.  On the cross he died physically - his bodily functions stopped and he was buried.  But what about his spirit?  That aspect of Jesus also died in that his contact with God the Father was broken.  Jesus the Messiah not only experienced the agoney of physical death he also experienced the seperation from the Father that we experience.

He entered death in this way so that he could rescue those who are seperate from God - spirtually dead.  It is like a firefighter rushing into a burning house to save a person who is trapped.  The firefighter cannot save the person without entering into their situation.

The atribute that God has that Jesus the Messiah shares is not 'life' or 'being alive'.  The atribute is the power to give life.  To rescue people from seperation and alienation from the source of true life and regenerate them into fully functioning spiritual beings.

The Trinity enables this wonderful truth.  God while keeping the creation in existance, is able to engage with us.  To enter the burning house and hold us in his arms and rescue us.  He doesn't just shout instructions from outside or barate us for playing with matches.  Jesus the Messiah is God himself giving us true spirtual life.  In this way death is defeated.  Satan no longer has the power to drag us with him into an eternal spiritual death, eternally seperated from the source of love and life.  The way is open.  The rescuer is with us, in the fire, delivering those who put their trust in him.

Edited by Dave follower of The Way
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On 4/21/2021 at 7:40 AM, Ashvazdanghe said:

Hi death & time of it has been set by Allah/God for everyone  since start of creation even for prophet  Adam(عليه السلام)  not because of disobeying  of prophet  Adam(عليه السلام) but as Allah/God rule which every living  out of paradise & hell will face  death which creation/birth of prophet  Isa (as)[Jrsus] was like creation  of prophet  Adam(عليه السلام) but he is not second Adam which he will dye before Imam Mahdi (aj) after second coming which after he lived some some years  on earth then he will die & will burry by Imam  Mahdi (aj) which Imam will die after him then both of them will resurrect  with all humans in judgment  day so every  human will have  physical death but their will remain until judgment  day then everyone  will enter to judgment  day & paradise  & hell with both of physical body & spirit for eternal  life in Paradise  or hell.

I really appreciate your contribution here.  Yes God knows when and how we will die.  Yes Jesus the Messiah and the Prophet Adam are similar in their physical bodies.  Both had a body made from dust and brought into existance by God's command.  Also both experienced the whisperings, temptations of satan.

The story of Adam tells us that he listened to satan and disobeyed God's command.  In this way we are decendents of Adam.  We too fall to the lies of satan.  Adam was sent by God out of the garden to live a hard life on earth.  We too, have to live this earthly life as children of Adam.

The story of Jesus the Messiah tells us that although he was tempted by satan he resisted and obeyed God completly.  Because of this, death (which was Adam's real punishment) could not hold him.  God raised him to himself.  Now we have the opportunity to continue as children of the first Adam, or to become children of the second Adam.  We can follow Jesus the Messiah, and with his strength, through the Holy Spirit of God living in us, resist the whisperings of satan and be raised to new life with God.  To share in Jesus the Messiah's resurrection.

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Your OP reminded me of this saying of Imam Ali (عليه السلام):

Quote

فزت ورب الكعبة 

“By the Lord of the Ka’ba, I have succeeded! “

This memorable phrase burst out from his lips the day when Imam Ali (عليه السلام) was struck with the fatal blow by the assassin’s poison-soaked sword. An immortal phrase, it has continued to goad human conscience for almost the past fourteen centuries! It has made those with even a grain of intellect dumbstruck at the dynamism of the person who pronounced it in the early hours of the 19th of Ramadhan, 40 AH corresponding to the year 660 of the Christian calendar.

What was the success that Imam Ali ibn Abi Talib (عليه السلام) felt at that moment? And why was he elated when all passages to life abruptly closed for him and he was about to enter the apparently unknown and uncharted realm of death? Only the ignorant would pose such a question concerning the man who says in one of his sermons: “The Son of Abu Talib is more enthusiastic for death than an infant for the mother’s breast.”

 

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