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The Islamic Christ
Author/Source: Zakariyya Dupont  Posted by: admin
Hits: 1712 Rating: 10 (1 votes) Comments: 1 Added On: Saturday, November 13, 2010 Rate this article

Many in my family have tried their best to understand why I chose to become a Muslim. I will attempt in this article to explain my decision to anyone who is curious about the large number of converts ( often referred to as reverts by fellow Muslims ), who have chosen to embrace Islam.

 

Before going specifically into Islam, I would first like to talk about Jesus Christ ( peace be upon him ) and the important role he plays in the lives of many ( if not most ) Westerners. I was raised in the Catholic Faith, in French Louisiana. While Christ is not the focal point in the lives of most in the West, his presence is normally not very far away. His presence can be felt in many homes weather it be a statue on a bedside table, a crucifix in the family room, or a set of rosary beads hanging from the rear view mirror in a car ( allowing the driver to be reminded of the peaceful nature of Christ, in order to keep his anger under control as he sits in a bumper to bumper traffic jam ). In typical Catholic households Christ is not only a source of spiritual inspiration and peace rather he is actually the vocal point of prayer. He and the Virgin Mary ( peace be upon her ) are often prayed to in order to make bad situations better, and to protect families from bad times during the bliss of good times.

 

It may seem to the average Christian that to shed such practices is the ultimate betrayal of Christ and his message. If this is the case it may also come as a shock to many Christians that love for Christ and the Virgin Mother, does not disappear when one becomes a Muslim. In some cases the love may appear with embracing Islam when it was not present before becoming a Muslim ( as would be the case with a Jewish or Hindu revert ). This love is obligatory on all Muslims. If a person holds hatred towards Christ then such a person can not be a Muslim, as Allah Almighty makes it clear in His book ( the Holy Quran ) that Jesus Christ is indeed a Messenger sent by Allah Almighty to deliver a divine revelation ( the Gospel ). This can be seen in the following verse of the Holy Quran: O People of the Book! Commit no excesses in your religion: “Nor say of Allah aught but the truth. Christ Jesus the son of Mary was (no more than) a messenger of Allah, and His Word, which He bestowed on Mary, and a spirit proceeding from Him: so believe in Allah and His messengers.” -Sura 4, Aya 171. The Quran also affirms the Virgin birth this can be seen in Surah 19, Verses 16-21 in the following conversation between the Angel Gabriel (pbuh) and Mary (pbuh): “And mention Marium in the Book when she drew aside from her family to an eastern place; So she took a veil (to screen herself) from them; then We sent to her Our spirit, and there appeared to her a well-made man. She said: Surely I fly for refuge from you to the Beneficent Allah, if you are one guarding (against evil). He said: I am only a messenger of your Lord: That I will give you a pure boy. She said: When shall I have a boy and no mortal has yet touched me, nor have I been unchaste? He said: Even so; your Lord says: It is easy to Me: and that We may make him a sign to men and a mercy from Us, and it is a matter which has been decreed. “

 

The reality is becoming a Muslim would only make a Christian much more Christ-like. Muslims strive to be as much like Prophet Muhammad ( pbuh ) as possible and live life and worship Allah Almighty the way he did. The Islamic view is that Prophet Muhammad is teaching the religion of the Prophet Abraham ( pbuh ) which is pure Monotheism. Prophet Muhammad was sent to correct many of the deviations that occurred in the line of the Abrahamic faiths ( such deviations only occurred in the absence of the respective Messenger ). In striving to live life like Prophet Muhammad, Muslims are in fact striving to live life as all the Prophets and Messengers did. A non-bias observation of the life of Prophet Jesus will show that Christ observed many practices of the Prophet Abraham which most Christians today have thrown away and dismissed as not necessary. This is primarily due to false Christian view that Paul was an apostle of Prophet Jesus. In accepting Paul as an apostle, it means accepting his works and decrees as if they came from Christ himself. Only one other person ( other than himself ) recognized Paul as an apostle, this person was Luke ( Paul’s personal secretary ). This can hardly be taken seriously as an accurate source of authentic Christianity as it existed in the time of Prophet Jesus.

 

It is important to keep the above mentioned things in mind when looking at the doctrine of the Holy Trinity which Allah Almighty is opposed to as can be seen here in the Quran in the rest of the verse quoted above addressing Prophet Jesus and his status as a Messenger of Allah Almighty: “and say not, Three. Desist, it is better for you; Allah is only one Allah; far be It from His glory that He should have a son, whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth is His, and Allah is sufficient for a Protector.”

 

Given that the Bible as it exists today has indeed been tampered with ( it is common knowledge that the early figures of Christianity simply took out Gospels they disagreed with, and added only Gospels that championed their theological views ), it is very difficult to say weather or not Christ taught the doctrine of the Holy Trinity or if this was instead invented and the Council of Nicaea. If Christ did speak of God the father, God the son, and God the Holy Spirit, it seems unlikely he meant it literally. Even in Islam some have taken sayings of certain Islamic Scholars and twisted them to create odd sects many of which no longer exist within the realm of Islam but instead have become separate religions ( as can been seen with the Universal Sufis ). Perhaps the same can be said for today’s Christians. God the Father and God the Son clearly if meant literally is utterly ridicules as it would make the creation their own creator, such a statement is also contrary to the divine transcendent nature of Allah Almighty that both Islam and Christianity affirm. One could see the allegorical nature of God being referred to as the Father ( although this is contrary to the common Islamic teaching of not making similarities between Allah Almighty and His creations ), God the Son perhaps is similar to the Islamic concept of trying to embody the 99 names of Allah Almighty and using these attributes to make yourself into a better person ( although considering yourself or any other person for that matter God made flesh, is certainly un-Islamic and such a belief would defiantly take a person outside the fold of Islam ). The Holy Spirit is something which is confirmed by Allah Almighty in the Holy Quran: Surah 2, Verse 87 states “And most certainly We gave Musa the Book and We sent messengers after him one after another; and We gave Isa, the son of Marium, clear arguments and strengthened him with the holy spirit, “.  The Holy Spirit is considered by some Islamic scholars to be Prophetic knowledge ( which these scholars considered to be the very life that was blown into Prophet Adam ( pbuh ). Other Scholars consider it to be the special Prophetic Quality of Christ as every Messenger had a special quality. A couple of examples of this are the Prophet Moses ( pbuh ) who could speak directly with God without an intercessor, and Prophet Muhammad ( pbuh ) who is more loved by Allah Almighty than anything else in creation. The exact meaning of the Holy Spirit is debatable but its reality from both the Islamic and Christian perspectives is not. To address the Holy Spirit as God makes as much sense as God the Father and God the Son, which is no sense at all.

 

Now getting back to Muslims attempting to mirror the practices of Prophet Muhammad ( pbuh ), it could certainly be said that in doing so Muslims are also mirroring the practices of Prophet Jesus ( pbuh ). I will now show here how the 5 pillars of Islam are much similar to the way Christ worshipped God as opposed to the way most Christians practice their religion today.

 

1. Shahada ( Testimony of Faith ): la ilaha ill Allah, Muhamadur rasul Allah ( There is no God except Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah ). One of the earliest sources of ancient Christian wisdom is a book called the didicay ( currently in the possession of Greek Orthodox Christians in Jerusalem *) This book was written while the family of Christ was still living. It completely destroys the notion that Christ was God in human form. It is said to call new converts to Christianity to worship only Allah Almighty and nothing else, thus confirming la ilaha ill Allah. It is common knowledge that the early Christians were living in the Arabian Peninsula before the coming of Prophet Muhammad ( pbuh ), Muslims believe this was because they were instructed by Prophet Jesus ( pbuh ) to await the coming of the next Messenger (Muslims believe Christ told them the Prophet would be an Arab ). Thus the Christian population in the Arabian Peninsula is widely believed to have been awaiting Prophet Muhammad (pbuh). Allah Almighty highlights this Prophecy of Christ in the Holy Quran : Surah 61, verse 6 “ And when Isa son of Marium said: O children of Israel! surely I am the messenger of Allah to you, verifying that which is before me of the Taurat and giving the good news of an Messenger who will come after me”. Therefore believing in Muhammadur rasul Allah is putting faith in the Prophecy of Christ.

 

2.Salah (Worship) : Modern day Christians do not dis-pute that Prophet Jesus ( pbuh ) prayed multiple times in a day. However the majority of Christians today do not even have one formal prayer a day, only the blessing of meals and a few quick prayers before going to sleep at night. Muslims on the other hand have 5 prayers a day. This seems to be closer to the way Christ lived in that a Muslim’s day is structured around Prayer. Also the majority of Christians today do not prostrate before Allah Almighty. Many historians believe prostration to have been a normal part of both early Jewish and Christian worship ( this can still be seen today in certain communities such as the Coptic Christians and the Karaite Jews #). Muslims Prostrate in the Salah and also after reciting certain verses of the Holy Quran. The prayer of a Muslim thus seems much closer to the way Christ prayed.

 

  3. Swam ( Fasting ): The Christians of today also do not dis-pute that Christ fasted for 40 days and nights after being baptised. Fasting from a certain thing is still practiced by many Christians during the Lent season leading up to Easter. The Islamic form of fasting is mandatory during the Month of Ramadan. The fast requires a Muslim to abstain from eating, drinking, and sexual relations from sunrise to sunset. It is a more involved fast than that of the Christians during Lent ( as in Lent normally only one thing that is pleasurable is abstained from ), judging from the devout nature of Christ one can assume that the fasting during Ramadan is most likely much closer to the spirit of fasting that Prophet Jesus ( pbuh ) practiced.

  

 4. Zakat ( Charity ): Another area where Christians and Muslims agree is that Christ was a big supporter of charity. Prophet Jesus ( pbuh ) is viewed largely today by both Capitalist and Socialist Christians as having been a champion of the poor. However in Christian organizations today charity is only encouraged but not mandated. The mandatory charity of Islam again seems to be much closer to the spirit of early Christianity and the Christianity of Christ, than the Christianity we see today.

 

  5. Hajj ( Pilgrimage ) As stated before Islam is simply the perfection of pure monotheism as practiced by Prophet Abraham ( pbuh ). As Islam, Christianity, and Judaism are all today considered to be Abrahamic faiths, the Hajj is certainly in no way contradictory to the teachings of Christ. The Hajj itself is rooted in events surrounding the Prophet Abraham ( pbuh ). Such as the zamzam well and Hajar ( pbuh ) running back and forth in search of water for the child Prophet Ishmael ( pbuh ), it then sprang forth and is the site of the zamzam well today which has still not dried up, and is frequented by pilgrams on the Hajj. The Hajj pilgrams re enact this rite by performing sa’is . After the Hajj ends Muslims have a holiday known as Eid ul Adha ( Greater Eid, as opposed to the lesser Eid ul Fitr which is celebrated at the end of fasting in Ramadan ). Eid ul Adha commemorates Allah Almighty sparing the life of Prophet Ishmael ( pbuh ) who was ordered to be killed by his own father Prophet Abraham ( pbuh ), Allah Almighty was so pleased by Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice his son only out of love for the Creator, that Allah Almighty spared Ishmael and ordered Abraham to sacrifice a ram instead. Abraham was tempted by satan to abandon Allah’s command and Abraham drove satan away by throwing stones at him ( another act re enacted by pilgrims during the Hajj ). The Hajj itself like all Islamic practices is rooted in the Abrahamic Prophetic line, the line which Christ belonged to.

 

   These 5 practices are defiantly not contrary to the Prophet Jesus ( pbuh ) and the way he lived, rather they are more in line with Prophet Jesus than the practices of today’s Christianity. A Christian interested in Islam need not worry about abandoning the Prophet Jesus by becoming Muslim, on the contrary if a Christian were to declare la ilaha ill Allah, Muhammadur rasul Allah it would only make them more Christ-like.

 

 

 

 

Notes:

* http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sAOxcHk5jB0

# Jewish Prostration in Prayer http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_HfyxpIeL8M&feature=player_embedded

Christian Prostration in Prayer http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TRLFeldPG3Y&feature=player_embedded


Comments
Malik55 Very well written, lesson to be learned . Hope we follow the straight path .
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