Category Archives: Christianity/Orientalists

Christian & Jewish Beliefs Regarding The Return Of The Messiah and Plots Against Masjid Al-Aqsa

Islaam, Christianity, and Judaism all believe in the coming of the leader of the great and final battle whom they all call the Messiah.

The Jews are looking forward to his coming because they claim he will bring about God’s kingdom on Earth, after the establishment of a Jewish nation in Palestine. They await a leader from among the children of Prophet Dawud, alayhes salam. According to Imaam Ibnul Qayyim, when this leader “moves his lips in prayers all the nations will die.” They claim that he is the promised Messiah, and call him the ‘Prince of Peace’. Believing that he will make all mankind subservient to the state of Israel, they are preparing for his arrival by gathering in Palestine. According to their beliefs, he will come to rule the Earth and reside in Jerusalem, which he will take as his capital. The person they are waiting for is the Dajjal, whom the Christians call the Antichrist. This is why the majority of the Dajjal’s followers will be from the Jews.

The Christians and the Muslims agree that this promised Messiah leader is Eesa (Alayhis salaam) who will descend from heaven and return to Earth to lead the great battle. This battle will be led by Eesa (alayhis salaam) against the Dajjal and his followers.

The Christians believe that before the second coming of Eesa (alayhis salaam), those who believe in Eesa (alayhis salaam) as the son of God will experience ‘the rapture’ when they will be raised up into the heavens to meet their Lord, and thereby will be saved from the Antichrist. They base their belief on the corrupted text of the Bible: “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ [i.e., the dead Christians] will rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.” (1 Thessalonians 4:16-17). The rest of the people will be left to perish with the king of darkness, son of Satan. 

“Then the king [Dajjal] shall do according to his own will: He shall exalt and magnify himself above every god, shall speak blasphemies against the God of gods, and shall prosper till the wrath has been accomplished; for what has been determined shall be done” (Daniel 11:36).

The Christians believe that the Armageddon will take place in a small valley called Meggido in Palestine. They claim that the battle which will be led by Eesa (alayhis salaam) against the Dajjal and his followers, will be crowned by victory for the Christians and the complete destruction of the non-Christians who will all drown in a lake of fire burning with brimstone. This is based on the corrupted text of the Bible: “Then I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the birds that fly in the midst of heaven, ‘Come and gather together for the supper of the great God, that you may eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of captains, the flesh of mighty men, the flesh of horses, and of those who sit on them, and the flesh of all people both free and slave, both small and great.’ And I saw the beast, the kings of the Earth, and their armies gathered together to make war against him that sat on the horse against his army. Then the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who worked signs in his presence, by which he deceived those who received the mark of the beast, and those who worshipped his image. These two were cast alive into the lake of fire burning with brimstone. And the rest were killed with the sword which proceeded from the mouth of him who sat on the horse. And all the birds were filled with their flesh.” (Revelation 19:17-21)

Why the Judeo-Christian Alliance in Palestine?

Allaah the Exalted said: “O you who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians for friends. They are but friends of one another” [5:51]. Although they differ in their theories of the outcome of al-Malhamah, the Jews and Christians have become allied against the Muslims in Palestine. Al-Aqsa Masjid is located in Jerusalem and is the third holiest site for Muslims. 

According to the corrupted text of the Old Testament, all of the Jews must return to Palestine and establish a Temple in the exact location of al-Aqsa before the Messiah will come. It is from this perspective that both the Jews and the Christians agree on the establishment of the state of Israel, and the immigration of all the Jews to Palestine. The Christians believe that the Messiah will come at the end of the Gregorian millennium, and rule on Earth for one thousand years. Allaah says: “Each [one of us, for the outcome of this] is waiting, so wait, and assuredly you shall know who are the travelers on the even path, and who is guided.” [20:135].

Masjid Al-Aqsa is in Danger

The Christians, specially the evangelicals, believe that Eesa (alayhis salaam) will kill the Dajjal who would be a Jew as well as his followers. But they believe that all of the Jews will convert to Christianity after the defeat of the Dajjal. Therefore the Christians do not object to the gathering of the Jews in Jerusalem. The Jews, however, believe that their victory and the re-establishment of their state will not take place until the ‘Temple’ has been rebuilt. This temple will have to be built in the same spot on which al-Aqsa exists today. They are waiting for signs that cause this to happen but because they believe that they can (and should) hasten their occurrence, they would like very much see al-Aqsa Masjid be destroyed sooner than later. They are, however, ready to rebuild the temple anytime now because they have taken all the necessary steps to prepare for that. Some are mentioned in the following:

PREMEDITATED AGGRESSION

‘The temple’ is an ancient name for the chosen place of worship before Islaam. The temple that existed two millenniums ago in Jerusalem represented the steps of Al-Aqsa mosque before Islaam. The Prophet, sallallahu alayhi wasallam, was asked about the first Masjid ever built. He said: “Al-Masjid al-Haram (in Makkah),” and when asked about the second Masjid, he said: “Al-Masjid al-Aqsa,” then he added that between the two were forty years (Bukhari). Both were built by prophet Ibrahim, alayhis salaam. The first temple that was built was destroyed around 587 BC at the hands of the king of Babylon, and the second temple was destroyed by the Romans in 70 CE and was not rebuilt since.

At the advent of Islaam the great event of al-Israa (The night journey of the Prophet from Makkah to Jerusalem) was an indication that the area has become the heritage of the Muslims, and that such a sacred place should not stay at the hands of disbelievers. Therefore freeing the land from them was the Muslims’ immediate goal after uniting the Arabian Peninsula (hence the battle of Tabuk). Now after two thousand years of the destruction of the temple and 1344 years of the building of al-Aqsa mosque the Jews want to destroy the mosque and rebuild a third temple at its place. Unfortunately they have made great steps toward this goal:

Occupation of al-Quds by the Jews:

Al-Quds (Jerusalem), the town where al-Aqsa Masjid was built, has been half eaten by the Jews when they annexed its Western part after the 1948 war. Now they have a plan (called Jerusalem 2000) to swallow the Eastern part, where Muslims are. First, Jewish settlers invaded the area which was 100% inhabited by Palestinians, to the point that the town became ‘a stronghold of the radical Jews’ (Newsweek 9/5/96). Their goal is to assure a strong Jewish majority in the Eastern town. Second, urban sprawl is allowed for the Jewish settlers all around the town to isolate it from the rest of the Palestinian land and hence its annexation would become easier.

Collecting holy stones to build the temple:

On 1989 the Jews claimed that they found a ‘holy’ stone weighing more than five tons which they put as the foundation stone for the third temple near al-Aqsa Masjid. Since then, they went on a frenzy looking for holy stones everywhere, even uprooting the city’s pavements to look for them. The radical Jews prepared everything according to their rituals to build the temple. They brought stones from the Neguev desert to be cut and polished in Jerusalem. They will need six million stones. ‘It is no more a secret that the temple has been designed in the USA by American Jewish architects. The blueprints are at the disposition of the Israeli government.’ (France Agence Press, August 1997).

Other preparations are underway to revive the rituals that were practiced in the temple. The altar is now ready. Rabbis are preparing whole generations to attend to the execution of the rituals. All utensils, such as recipients and even prayer rugs that would be needed once the temple is built are now ready.

The menorah, the tabut, and the sacred cow:

For the Jews, the sacredness of the temple is not complete without the menorah, their religious symbol. The Jews believe that the menorah which was in the first temple still exists, and was saved from fire when this later was burned down, but it has been missed since then. They are incessantly looking for it. Meanwhile, a huge menorah costing three million dollars was made of gold to be put in the temple.

The Jews are also looking for the tabut (the Ark of the Covenant) a wooden box containing a remnant of what Musa and Harun left behind (Muslims believe that this tabut was given to the people of Israel as a sign of the kingship of Saul as stated in the Qur’an 2:248). They believe that exists buried under the rubbles of the first temple. To search for it, they are undertaking extensive excavations under al-Aqsa Masjid!

In summary, the Jews have got everything ready before even the temple is built. But they cannot start building until they get a sign from God as they believe. This sign is a red cow that should fulfill the description mentioned in their book. This cow would be slaughtered and burned and its ashes would be used to ‘purify’ the people of Israel, for you see none can enter the temple without being purified, and the Jews believe that they all are impure now until they are cleaned by the cow’s remains! Well this cow they claim was born in 1997. “The ritual slaughter of the red cow will take place three years after its birth; the count down to the great return of the Jews to their original place of worship, and the glad tidings of he coming of the savior, the Messiah. The attempt to accomplish this return will lead to an unforgettable beginning of the third millennium.” (The Observer, 9/7/97)

Excavations under the Masjid

This perhaps is the most dangerous and most malicious plot to destroy the mosque. These excavations have been going on for decades and are still underway. The goal is: to empty the ground under the two mosques, al-Aqsa and the Dome of the Rock, leaving them standing on hollow foundations so that they are vulnerable to collapse at the slightest natural or man-made tremor. Of course the Israeli government does not reveal this goal, but claims that the only purpose of the excavations is archeological; to find the remains of the second temple and other artifacts.

Digging tunnels under al-Aqsa:

These operations not only contribute to threatening the foundations of the mosque but also will facilitate and complement the project of the temple in future phases. In September 1996 a tunnel has been officially inaugurated, an indication that the steps to turn the mosque into a Jewish temple has officially started. Other tunnels are being dug under the Masjid, which means that now the Jews share the area with the Muslims. These tunnels can be used temporarily for worship, while the Israeli government has put electronic screens inside them showing al-Quds (Jerusalem), and at the place of al-Aqsa Masjid and the Dome of the Rock, the Jewish temple is shown surrounded by new buildings of Jewish architecture.

Also Read: The Mystery Beneath Masjid Al Aqsa and the Dajjalic “New World Order”

Polygamy in Islam and Compared to The Bible

by Ebrahim Saifuddin

People from different religions often point fingers at the permissibility of Polygamy in Islam. This is due to their lack of understanding as far as polygamy in Islam is concerned. In due course of this article which I intend to keep short and sweet, I will explain what polygamy in Islam is.

According to the Online Merriam Webster Dictionary

Polygamy: marriage in which a spouse of either sex may have more than one mate at the same time.

Polygyny: the state or practice of having more than one wife or female mate at one time

Polyandry: the state or practice of having more than one husband or male mate at one time

Hence it would only be appropriate to mention that polygyny is allowed in Islam and not polygamy as a general term. But in this article I will refer to it as polygamy for the ease of the reader.

It should be pointed out that Islam never introduced Polygamy. It was already prevalent. Probably the only religion that does claim to prohibit it is Christianity but in reality the Bible never prohibited Polygamy. I will discuss the Bible as regards to Polygamy towards the end.

In the Quran, Surah Nisa, verse 3, it is mentioned:

“If ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly with the orphans, Marry women of your choice, Two or three or four; but if ye fear that ye shall not be able to deal justly (with them), then only one, or (a captive) that your right hands possess, that will be more suitable, to prevent you from doing injustice.” [Quran 4:3]

This verse was revealed after the Battle of Uhud in which nearly half the Muslim population was wiped out. Hence Allah Ta’ala in all His Wisdom told Muslims to:

FIRST opt for adopting an orphan.

If injustice was feared,
THEN if you can be just, opt for marrying up to four women.

If injustice was feared,
THEN marry only ONE.

As it is from the above verse it is clear that polygamy was never the first choice. The purpose of this Noble Verse was two folds:

1) To give protection to the orphans
2) To increase the Muslim population primarily by adopting and giving protection to the orphans.

Hence despite the fact that the Muslims had lost a lot of men Allah Ta’ala still did not want polygamy to take place and the first option that He gave was for them to adopt. Regarding polygamy He strictly said that you have to be just between your wives and even if you FEAR that you cannot be just, you are to marry only ONE.

Being “Just” with your wives is not an option but a compulsion. Hence if a man fears that he might not be able to be just with his wives then he cannot marry more than one woman.

From the verse it is also clear that Polygamy is not something compulsory but only permissible. Everything that is permissible is not compulsory. Also no one can force anyone to marry. In Islam both the parties have equal rights to choose their partners hence a man cannot force a woman to marry him.

There are many cases that occur where a husband divorces his wife for various reasons. These reasons may include anything; individual cases have different reasons. Many a times the wife is physically abused to the extent where she finds no way out other than to opt for divorce. I have personally seen cases where the husband throws the wife along with the children out of the house without any financial support. These are only some of the cases that take place in this world. Those who have undergone it are hurt and totally broken from the inside. It is not easy for such a woman to survive along with her children. Apart from that it is her natural and biological desire to have a family and a husband.

Realizing these factors one must also recognize the fact that not many single men are willing to marry a divorcee. If such a divorcee has children then her case gets more complicated. Why should a woman whose divorce is not her fault, suffer through life without a family and a husband? Islam recognizes the need and carnal desires for people to have a partner. In such cases there is nothing wrong if an already married man wishes to marry such a woman to support her and provide her with a family. This also keeps the society in order and minimizes the chances of corruption.

Comparing Polyandry to Polygyny

Some people including feminists often argue why Polyandry is not permitted. Why can the female not have more than one husband and why is man allowed more than one wife. If polyandry were allowed then greater problems would be faced as compared to monogamy. Below I will analyze the points discussed above and some more points in light of polyandry.

1) If in a case like loss of male population e.g. that which occurred after the Battle of Uhud, we practice polyandry, then the purpose of re-population is defeated. I would like the people who advocate for polyandry, use their wisdom and explain how re-population can be achieved with polyandry.

2) Further it should also be noted that a female is highly likely to develop STD when she has multiple sexual partners e.g. Bacterial Vaginosis

3) Imagine a woman with more than one husband, and all her husbands want to have a child. Who will have it first? Fine they agree on turns. So this year one husband has a child the next it’s the other. Again medically this is unhealthy for the woman. She will be having children every year!! Would she be able to tend to all her husbands and her infants? No way is it practical. Any logical sane mind would accept that it is not possible.

Polygamy (Polygyny) as seen in the Bible

It is a misconception that the Bible does not allow polygamy. Christians often talk about Bible prohibiting polygamy. There is not a single verse in the Bible which would say “marry only one”. The Quran is the only scripture that has this phrase. Polygamy is clearly seen in the Old Testament. I will quote some of the verses below:

“If a man have two wives, one beloved, and another hated, and they have born him children, [both] the beloved and the hated; and [if] the firstborn son be hers that was hated” [Deuteronomy 21:15]

“If he take him another [wife]; her food, her raiment, and her duty of marriage, shall he not diminish.” [Exodus 21:10]

From the above verses it is clear that the Bible acknowledges and allows polygamy. Biblical personalities are often quoted as to having more than one wife. Examples of such are Solomon, David, Rehoboam etc:

“And Rehoboam loved Maachah the daughter of Absalom above all his wives and his concubines: (for he took eighteen wives, and threescore concubines; and begat twenty and eight sons, and threescore daughters.)” [2 Chronicles 11:21]

“And he (Solomon) had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart.” [1 Kings 11:3]

When 1 Kings 11:3 is quoted many Christians, in their defense, quote the following verse:

“Solomon did evil in the sight of the LORD; he did not follow him unreservedly as his father David had done.” [1 Kings 11:6]

They suggest that because Solomon was polygamous, God declared him as being evil and compares him to his father David, who according to God, followed His commands. What our Christian brothers fail to realize is that the verse 1 Kings 11:6 does not explain the evil. It does not say that the evil was polygamy.
Secondly the verse compares him to his father David and what exactly was David?

“And David took him more concubines and wives out of Jerusalem, after he was come from Hebron: and there were yet sons and daughters born to David.” [2 Samuel 5:13]

And:

“[These were] all the sons of David, beside the sons of the concubines, and Tamar their sister.” [1 Chronicles 3:1-9]

David was polygamous as well! So it is clear that 1 Kings 11:6 does not refer to polygamy when calling Solomon evil.

Analyzing Matthew 19:3-12

Nearly all of Christendom would quote Matthew 19:4-6 as being the verses that prohibit polygamy. The verses are as follows:

“‘Haven’t you read,’ he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.” [Matthew 19:4-6]

Now they say that Jesus talked about the Creator making male and female and for this reason the man will leave his father and mother and be united with a woman and the two will become on flesh therefore polygamy is prohibited.

When one reads the verse in context i.e. from Matthew 19:3 onwards we see that some Pharisees came to Jesus and asked him:

“Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, ‘Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?’” [Matthew 19:3]

They simply asked if it was lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason. You see at the time of Jesus there were 2 schools of thought present there.

One was Hillel and the other was Shammai.

Shammai understood that divorce was allowed only when the wife was unfaithful.

Hillel understood that divorce could be given for any reason.

Shammai practiced polygamy.
Hillel did not.

So first it is important for us to know which school of thought did these Pharisees belonged to. As Shammai already knew that a wife cannot be divorced unless she is unfaithful, therefore they could not have asked this question to Jesus.

Hillel understood that divorce can be given for whatever reason therefore if one uses logic it is evident that it were the Hillel who asked Jesus this question and not the Shammai.

Further, the Hillel did not practice polygamy therefore the answer given by Jesus could not have possibly been in reference to polygamy (as Hillel never practiced it) and therefore was in reference to divorce.

Let’s further analyze the “2 become 1″ phrase.

Jesus used his words very carefully and he used the term “In the beginning”, he did not say “from now”, so if Christendom wants to apply this 2 become 1 rule for polygamy then they have to agree that it was true for all times SINCE the beginning. So when this “universal law” is applicable since the beginning, why does the same God approve of polygamy when He said:

“If he take him another [wife]; her food, her raiment, and her duty of marriage, shall he not diminish.” [Exodus 21:10]

Why did the same God allow polygamy? Did 2 not become 1 at that time? Ofcourse it did! Jesus(as) said “In the beginning”!

Moreover what did the Pharisees understood out of Matthew 19:4-6? Did the Pharisees understood it to mean Polygamy? No they did not. This can be seen from the proceeding verse where they ask Jesus(as) after his “2 become 1″ parable:

They asked:

“Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?” [Matthew 4:7]

They did not ask why Moses gave the command that polygamy is allowed!

They asked why Moses allowed divorce.

So then our Christian brothers quote the following:

“I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for marital unfaithfulness, and marries another woman commits adultery.” [Matthew 19:9]

The message in this verse is again clear – if you divorce your wife for any reason other than her being unfaithful, and marry someone else, only then are you committing adultery. Any marriage post divorce (except for reason of unfaithfulness) is declared invalid. The ruling is for post divorce and not for pre divorce. You see Jesus used his words very carefully. Why people are hell bent on twisting his words is beyond me. He said in the simplest words possible – Do not divorce. And do not divorce does not mean do not marry another woman. Jesus is only warning the others that they dare not divorce their wives for any and every reason unless it is unfaithfulness. He is only securing the rights of women! But if a person divorces his wife for any other reason then the punishment for him according to the Law of God is that every other woman would be forbidden to him and he would therefore be committing adultery even if he marries someone else. Jesus is only securing the women.

Analyzing Matthew 5:32

A verse often quoted by Christians to prove prohibition of Polygamy:

“But I say unto you, That whosoever shall put away his wife, saving for the cause of fornication, causeth her to commit adultery: and whosoever shall marry her that is divorced committeth adultery.” [Matthew 5:32]

Again it is interesting to see that Matthew 5:32 is not related to the incident of the Jews. After reading a few verses before and after the verse pointed out, one can see that Jesus is declaring a set of laws. While declaring these set of laws, what prevented Jesus from using clear terms regarding Polygamy? Polygamy was practiced by the Jews and it was approved of in the OT. Therefore if it was indeed such an evil act, why did Jesus(as) not prohibit it here in clear words? Indeed his intention was not to prohibit it.

Another problem in this verse is the injustice to the woman. A woman who is divorced without the reason of being unfaithful, cannot marry another man because the verse says that whoever marries such a woman would be committing adultery. Remember, the Bible remains silent about the remarriage of an unfaithful wife who is divorced. Hence an unfaithful wife who is divorced can remarry but a faithful wife who was divorced cannot remarry another man!! This is injustice!

Below I will apply this law in Matthew 5:32 to practical situations.

Let’s apply this to a man who already has 3 wives and converts to Christianity. What in the world would become of him and his wives? Technically if we go with the interpretation provided by Christendom, then, he will have to divorce 2 of them because if he doesn’t then he will be committing a sin. If he does, then again he will be committing a sin. The poor man will go insane and the poor wives that he will divorce will not be able to remarry either thus leading to injustice.

You see a religion or the laws set by God have to include various possibilities. If you go with the explanation that I have provided then everything fits into place and thus eliminating these complications and injustices that can arise.

Islam provides solution for such situations.

Islam has a solution.
Christianity has NO solution.

Further Evidence for Polygamy in the Bible

a) In 1 Timothy 3:2 which I quote below:

“A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;” [1 Timothy 3:2]

There is a statement of “husband of one wife” but who is it applicable to?

The Bishop! Not common man.
If Polygamy was prohibited then why would it be made specific to the Bishop to marry ONLY ONE?

Naturally if Polygamy was prohibited then the Bishop would marry only one hence then this verse would make no sense.

b) Similarly I will quote another passage:

“A deacon must be the husband of but one wife and must manage his children and his household well.” [1 Timothy 3:12]

Again this statement is for the deacon. If polygamy was so obviously declared prohibited in the Bible, then this statement would not really make any sense as the deacon would naturally marry only one.

c) In Matthew 22:24 there is again an incident where some Sadducees come up to Jesus(as) and remind him of the law stated by Moses(as). The law was that when a man dies and leaves behind his wife and no children, then his brother has to marry his wife:

“Saying, Master, Moses said, If a man die, having no children, his brother shall marry his wife, and raise up seed unto his brother.” [Matthew 22:24]

Note how the Bible makes it a law for a man to marry his brother’s widow, provided his brother had no children. The Bible does not mention the marital status of the man who will have to fulfill this law. Therefore whether married or unmarried, the man will have to marry his brother’s widow. Jesus did not forbid or deny this law and accepted it. This can be seen if one reads the proceeding verses. Again there is evidence of polygamy as being permissible in the Bible.

Do All Christians say Polygamy is prohibited in the Bible?

No they do not. Many, like the Mormons believe it to be permissible in the Bible. I would like you to read the following link and the interpretation they have given for 1Timothy 3:2

Scriptural Polygamy

In the end I would like to say that our Christian brothers should not forget that Jesus did not come to abolish the previous law. He came to fulfill it.

“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them.” [Matthew 5:17]

Orientalism, Misinformation and Islam

by Abu Iman ‘Abd ar-Rahman Robert Squires

Any open-minded person embarking on a study of Islam, especially if using books written in European languages, should be aware of the seemingly inherent distortions that permeate almost all non-Muslim writings on Islam.  At least since the Middle Ages, Islam has been much maligned and severely misunderstood in the West. In the last years of the Twentieth Century, it does not seem that much has changed — even though most Muslims would agree that progress is being made.

QUESTIONABLE MOTIVES & GENERAL IGNORANCE

I feel that an elegant summary of the West’s ignorance of Islam and the motives of Orientalism are the following words by the Swiss journalist and author, Roger Du Pasquier:

“The West, whether Christian or dechristianised, has never really known Islam.  Ever since they watched it appear on the world stage, Christians never ceased to insult and slander it in order to find justification for waging war on it. It has been subjected to grotesque distortions the traces of which still endure in the European mind. Even today there are many Westerners for whom Islam can be reduced to three ideas: fanaticism, fatalism and polygamy. Of course, there does exist a more cultivated public whose ideas about Islam are less deformed; there are still precious few who know that the word islam signifies nothing other than ‘submission to God’.  One symptom of this ignorance is the fact that in the imagination of most Europeans, Allah refers to the divinity of the Muslims, not the God of the Christians and Jews; they are all surprised to hear, when one takes the trouble to explain things to them, that ‘Allah’ means ‘God’, and that even Arab Christians know him by no other name. 
    
Islam has of course been the object of studies by Western orientalists who, over the last two centuries, have published an extensive learned literature on the subject. Nevertheless, however worthy their labours may have been, particularly in the historical and and philological fields, they have contributed little to a better understanding of the Muslim religion in the Christian or post-Christian milieu, simply because they have failed to arouse much interest outside their specialised academic circles. One is forced also to concede that Oriental studies in the West have not always been inspired by the purest spirit of scholarly impartiality, and it is hard to deny that some Islamicists and Arabists have worked with the clear intention of belittling Islam and its adherents. This tendency was particularly marked—for obvious reasons—in the heyday of the colonial empires, but it would be an exaggeration to claim that it has vanished without trace. 
    
These are some of the reasons why Islam remains even today so misjudged by the West, where curiously enough, Asiatic faiths such as Buddhism and Hinduism have for more than a century generated far more visible sympathy and interest, even though Islam is so close to Judaism and Christianity, having flowed from the same Abrahamic source.  Despite this, however, for several years it has seemed that external conditions, particularly the growing importance of the Arab-Islamic countries in the world’s great political and economic affairs, have served to arouse a growing interest of Islam in the West, resulting—for some—in the discovery of new and hitherto unsuspected horizons.”   (From Unveiling Islam, by Roger Du Pasquier, pages 5-7)

The feeling that there is a general ignorance of Islam in the West is shared by Maurice Bucaille, a French doctor, who writes:

“When one mentions Islam to the materialist atheist, he smiles with a complacency that is only equal to his ignorance of the subject.  In common with the majority of Western intellectuals, of whatever religious persuasion, he has animpressive collection of false notions about Islam.  One must, on this point, allow him one or two excuses.  Firstly, apart from the newly-adopted attitudes prevailing among the highest Catholic authorities, Islam has always been subject in the West to a so-called ‘secular slander’.  Anyone in the West who has acquired a deep knowledge of Islam knows just to what extent its history, dogma and aims have been distorted. One must also take into account that fact that documents published in European languages on this subject (leaving aside highly specialised studies) do not make the work of a person willing to learn any easier.”  (From The Bible, the Qur’an and Science, by Maurice Bucaille, page 118)

ORIENTALISM:  A BROAD DEFINITION

The phenomenon which is generally known as Orientalism is but one aspect of Western misrepresentations of Islam.  Today, most Muslims in the West would probably agree that the largest volume of distorted information about Islam comes from the media, whether in newspapers, magazines or on television. In terms of the number of people who are reached by such information, the mass media certainly has more of a widespread impact on the West’s view of Islam than do the academic publications of  “Orientalists”“Arabists” or  “Islamicists”.  Speaking of labels, in recent years the academic field of what used to be called  “Orientalism”  has been renamed “Area Studies” or “Regional Studies”, in most colleges and universities in the West. These politically correct terms have taken the place of the word “Orientalism” in scholarly circles since the latter word is now tainted with a negative imperialist connotation, in a large measure due to the Orientalists themselves. However, even though the works of scholars who pursue these fields do not reach the public at large, they do often fall into the hands of students and those who are personally interested in learning more about Islam.  As such, any student of Islam — especially those in the West — need to be aware of the historical phenomenon of Orientalism, both as an academic pursuit and as a means of cultural exploitation. When used by Muslims, the word “Orientalist” generally refers to any Western scholar who studies Islam — regardless of his or her motives — and thus, inevitably, distorts it.  As we shall see, however, the phenomenon of Orientalism is much more than an academic pursuit.  Edward Said, a renowned Arab Christian scholar and author of several books exposing shortcomings of the Orientalist approach, defines  “Orientalism”  as follows:

” … by Orientalism I mean several things, all of them, in my opinion, interdependent.  The most readily accepted designation of for Orientalism is an academic one, and indeed, and indeed the label still serves in a number of academic institutions. Anyone who teaches, writes about, or researches the Orient — and this applies whether the person is an anthropologist, sociologist, historian, or philogist — either in its specific or its general aspects, is an Orientalist, and what he or she does is Orientalism.” (From Orientalism, by Edward W. Said, page 2)

“To speak of Orientalism therefore is to speak mainly, although not exclusively, of a British and French cultural enterprise, a project whose dimensions take in such disparate realms as the imagination itself, the whole of India and the Levant, the Biblical texts and the Biblical lands, the spice trade, colonial armies and a long tradition of colonial administrators, a formidable scholarly corpus, innumerable Oriental “experts” and “hands”, an Oriental professorate, a complex array of “Oriental” ideas (Oriental despotism, Oriental splendor, cruelty, sensuality), many Eastern sects, philosophies, and wisdoms domesticated for local European use—the list can be extended more or less indefinitely.” (From Orientalism, by Edward W. Said, page 4)

As is the case with many things, being aware of the problem is half the battle. Once a sincere seeker of the Truth is aware of the long standing misunderstanding and hostility between Islam and the West — and learns not to trust everything which they see in print — authentic knowledge and information can be obtained much more quickly. Certainly, not all Western writings on Islam have the same degree of bias — they run the range from willful distortion to simple ignorance — and there are even a few that could be classified as sincere efforts by non-Muslims to portray Islam in a positive light. However, even most of these works are plagued by seemingly unintentional errors, however minor, due to the author’s lack of Islamic knowledge. In the spirit of fairness, it should be said that even some contemporary books on Islam by Muslim authors suffer from these same shortcomings, usually due to a lack of knowledge, heretical ideas and or depending on non-Muslim sources.

This having been said, it should come as no surprise that learning about Islam in the West — especially when relying on works in European languages — has never been an easy task.  Just a few decades ago, an English speaking person who was interested in Islam, and wishing to limit their reading to works by Muslim authors, might have been limited to reading a translation of the Qur’an, a few translated  hadeeth books and a few dozen pamphlet-sized essays. However, in the past several years the widespread availability of Islamic books — written by believing and committed Muslims — and the advent of the Internet have made obtaining authentic information on almost any aspect of Islam much easier. Today, hardly a week goes by that an English translation of a classical Islamic work is not announced. Keeping this in mind, I would encourage the reader to consult books written by Muslim authors when trying to learn about Islam.  There are a wide range of Islamic books distributors that can be contacted through the Internet. 

IMPERIALISTIC AIMS & EAGER MISSIONARIES

Moving on to a more detailed look at the West’s distorted view of Islam in general and Orientalism in particularEdward Said, the Arab Christian author of the monumental work Orientalism,  accurately referred to Orientalism a“cultural enterprise”.  This is certainly no distortion, since the academic study of the Oriental  East by the Occidental  West was often motivated — and often co-operated hand-in-hand — with the imperialistic aims of the European colonial powers.  Without a doubt, the foundations of Orientalism are in the maxim “Know thy enemy”.  When the “Christian Nations” of Europe began their long campaign to colonize and conquer the rest of the world for their own benefit, they brought their academic and missionary resources to bear in order to assist in the task.  Orientalists and missionaries — whose ranks often overlapped — were more often than not the servants of an imperialist government who was using their services as a way to subdue or weaken an enemy, however subtly:

“With regard to Islam and the Islamic territories, for example, Britain felt that it had legitimate interests, as a Christian power, to safeguard. A complex apparatus for tending these interests developed. Such early organizations as the Society for Promoting Christian Knowledge (1698) and the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel in Foreign Parts (1701) were succeeded and later abetted by the Baptist Missionary Society (1792), the Church Missionary Society (1799), the British and Foreign Bible Society (1804), the London Society for Promoting Christianity Among the Jews (1808).  These missions “openly” joined the expansion of Europe.”  (From Orientalism, by Edward W. Said, page 100)

Anyone who has studied the subject knows that Christian missionaries were willing participants in European imperialism, regardless of the pure motives or naïveté of some of the individual missionaries.  Actually, quite a few Orientalist scholars were Christian missionaries. One notable example is Sir William Muir, who was an active missionary and author of several books on Islam.  His books were very biased and narrow-minded studies, but they continue to be used as references for those wishing to attack Islam to this very day. That Christians were the source of some of the worst lies and distortions about Islam should come as no surprise, since Islam was its main “competitor” on the stage of World Religions. Far from honouring the commandment not to bear false witness against one’s neighbour, Christians distortions—and outright lies—about Islam were widespread, as the following shows:

“The history of Orientalism is hardly one of unbiased examination of the sources of Islam especially when under the influence of the bigotry of Christianity. From the fanatical distortions of John of Damascus to the apologetic of later writers against Islam that told their audiences that the Muslims worshipped three idols! Peter the Venerable (1084-1156) “translated” the Qur’an which was used throughout the Middle Ages and included nine additional chapters. Sale’s infamously distorted translation followed that trend, and his, along with the likes of Rodwell, Muir and a multitude of others attacked the character and personality of Muhammmed. Often they employed invented stories, or narration’s which the Muslims themselves considered fabricated or weak, or else they distorted the facts by claiming Muslims held a position which they did not, or using the habits practised out of ignorance among the Muslims as the accurate portrayal of Islam. As Norman Daniel tell us in his work Islam and the West“The use of false evidence to attack Islam was all but universal . . . “ (p. 267).”  (From An Authoritative Exposition – Part 1)

This view is confirmed by the well known historian of the Middle East, Bernard Lewis, when he writes:

“Medieval Christendom did, however, study Islam, for the double purpose of protecting Christians from Muslim blandishments and converting Muslims to Christianity, and Christian scholars, most of them priests or monks, created a body of literature concerning the faith, its Prophet, and his book, polemic in purpose and often scurrilous in tone, designed to protect and discourage rather than to inform”..”  (From Islam and the West, by Bernard Lewis, pages 85-86)

There is a great deal of proof that one could use to demonstrate that when it came to attacking Islam, even the Roman Catholic Church would readily embrace almost any untruth. Here’s an example: 

“At a certain period in history, hostility to Islam, in whatever shape or form, even coming from declared enemies of the church, was received with the most heartfelt approbation by high dignitaries of the Catholic Church. Thus Pope Benedict XIV, who is reputed to have been the greatest Pontiff of the Eighteenth century, unhesitatingly sent his blessing to Voltaire.  This was in thanks for the dedication to him of the tragedy Mohammed or Fanaticism (Mahomet ou le Fanatisme) 1741, a coarse satire that any clever scribbler of bad faith could have written on any subject. In spite of a bad start, the play gained sufficient prestige to be included in the repertoire of the Comédie-Française.”  (From  The Bible, the Qur’am and Science, by Maurice Bucaille, page 118)

WIDESPREAD LIES & POPULAR CULTURE

The dedicated enemy of the church, referred to above, was the French philosopher Voltaire. Also, the above passage introduces a point that one should be well aware of: the distortions and lies about Islam throughout the ages in Europe were not been limited to a small number of scholars and clergy. On the contrary, they were part of popular culture at the time:

“The European imagination was nourished extensively from this repertoire [of Oriental images]:  between the Middle Ages and the eighteenth century such major authors as Ariosto, Milton, Marlowe, Tasso, Shakespeare, Cervantes, and the authors of the Chanson de Roland and the Poema del Cid drew on the Orient’s riches for their productions, in ways that sharpened that outlines of imagery, ideas, and figures populating it. In addition, a great deal of what was considered learned Orientalist scholarship in Europe pressed ideological myths into service, even as knowledge seemed genuinely to be advancing.” (From Orientalism, by Edward Said, page 63)

“The invariable tendency to neglect what the Qur’an meant, or what Muslims thought it meant, or what Muslims thought or did in any given circumstances, necessarily implies that Qur’anic and other Islamic doctrine was presented in a form that would convince Christians; and more and more extravagant forms would stand a chance of acceptance as the distance of the writers and public from the Islamic border increased. It was with very great reluctance that what Muslims said Muslims believed was accepted as what they did believe. There was a Christian picture in which the details (even under the pressure of facts) were abandoned as little as possible, and in which the general outline was never abandoned. There were shades of difference, but only with a common framework. All the corrections that were made in the interests of an increasing accuracy were only a defence of what had newly realised to be vulnerable, a shoring up of a weakened structure. Christian opinion was an erection which could not be demolished, even to be rebuilt.” (From Islam and the Wesr: The Making of an Image, by Norman Daniel, page 259-260)

Edward Said, in his classic work Orientalism, referring to the above passage by Norman Daniel, says:

“This rigorous Christian picture of Islam was intensified in innumerable ways, including — during the Middle Ages and early Renaissance — a large variety of poetry, learned controversy, and popular superstition. By this time the Near Orient had been all but incorporated in the common world-picture of Latin Christianity — as in the Chanson de Roland  the worship of Saracens is portrayed as embracing Mahomet and Apollo. By the middle of the fifteenth century, as R. W. Southern has brilliantly shown, it became apparent to serious European thinkers “that something would have to be done about Islam,” which had turned the situation around somewhat by itself arriving militarily in Eastern Europe.”  (From Orientalism, by Edward W. Said, page 61)

“Most conspicuous to us is the inability of any of these systems of thought [European Christian] to provide a fully satisfying explanation of the phenomenon they had set out to explain [Islam] — still less to influence the course of practical events in a decisive way. At a practical level, events never turned out either so well or so ill as the most intelligent observers predicted:  and it is perhaps worth noticing that they never turned out better than when the best judges confidently expected a happy ending.  Was there any progress [in Christian knowledge of Islam]? I must express my conviction that there was. Even if the solutions of the problem remained obstinately hidden from sight, the statement of the problem became more complex, more rational, and more related to experience.”  (From Western Views of Islam in the Middle Ages, by R. W. Southern, pages 91-92)

Regardless of the flawed, biased — and even devious — approach of many Orientalists, they too can have their moments of candour, as Roger Du Pasquier points out:

“In general one must unhappily concur with an Orientalist like Montgomery Watt when he writes that ‘of all the great men of the world, no-one has had as many detractors as Muhammad.’  Having engaged in a lengthy study of the life and work of the Prophet, the British Arabist add that ‘it is hard to understand why this has been the case’, finding the only plausible explanation in the fact that for centuries Christianity treated Islam as its worst enemy. And although Europeans today look at Islam and its founder in a somewhat more objective light, ‘many ancient  prejudices still remain.’”  (From Unveiling Islam, by Roger Du Pasquier, page 47 – quoting from W. M. Watt’s Muhammad at Medina, Oxford University Press)

SOUND ADVICE & CONCLUDING REMARKS

In conclusion, I would like to turn to a description of Orientalism by an American convert to Islam.  What he has this to say about the objectives and methods of Orientalism, especially how it is flawed from an Islamic perspective, is quite enlightening. While summarizing his views on a book by an Orientalist author, he writes:

(t)he book accurately reports the names and dates of the events it discusses, though its explanations of Muslim figures, their motives, and their place within the Islamic world are observed through the looking glass of unbelief (kufr), giving a reverse-image of many of the realities it reflects, and perhaps calling for a word here on the literature that has been termed Orientalism, or in the contemporary idiom, “area studies“. It is a viewpoint requiring that scholarly description of something like “African Islam” be first an foremost objective. The premises of this objectivity conform closely, upon reflection, to the lived and felt experience of a post-religious, Western intellectual tradition in understanding religion; namely, that comparing human cultural systems and societies in their historical succession and multiplicity leads the open-minded observer to moral relativism, since no moral value can be discovered which on its own merits is transculturally valid.  Here, human civilizations, with their cultural forms, religions, hopes, aims, beliefs, prophets, sacred scriptures, and deities, are essentially plants that grow out of the earth, springing from their various seeds and soils, thriving for a time, and then withering away.  The scholar’s concern is only to record these elements and propose a plausible relation between them. 
    
Such a point of departure, if de rigueur  for serious academic work is of course non-Islamic and anti-Islamic. As a fundamental incomprehension of Islam, it naturally distorts what it seeks to explain, yet with an observable disparity in the degree of distortion in any given description that seems to correspond roughly to how close the object of explanation is to the core of Islam.  In dealing with central issues like Allah, the Prophet (Allah bless him and give him peace), the Koran, or hadith, it is at its worst; while the further it proceeds to the periphery, such as historical details of trade concessions, treaties names of rulers, weights of coins, etc., the less distorted it becomes.  In either case, it is plainly superior for Muslims to rely on fellow Muslims when Islamic sources are available on a subject … if only to avoid the subtle and not-so-subtle distortions of non-Islamic works about Islam. One cannot help but feel that nothing bad would happen to us if we were to abandon the trend of many contemporary Muslim writers of faithfully annotating our works with quotes from the founding fathers of Orientalism, if only because to sleep with the dogs is generally to rise with the fleas.” (From The Reliance of the Traveller, Edited and Translated by Nuh Ha Mim Keller, page 1042)

As anyone who has studied Orientalism knows, both their methodology and their intentions were less than ideal. The following remarks serve as a pointed synopsis of the approach of Western Orientalist scholars to the Qur’an in particular and Islam in general:

“The Orientalist enterprise of Qur’anic studies, whatever its other merits and services, was a project born of spite, bred in frustration and nourished by vengeance: the spite of the powerful for the powerless, the frustration of the “rational” towards the “superstitious” and the vengeance of the “orthodox” against the “non-conformist.” At the greatest hour of his worldly-triumph, the Western man, coordinating the powers of the State, Church and Academia, launched his most determined assault on the citadel of Muslim faith. All the aberrant streaks of his arrogant personality — its reckless rationalism, its world-domineering phantasy and its sectarian fanaticism — joined in an unholy conspiracy to dislodge the Muslim Scripture from its firmly entrenched position as the epitome of historic authenticity and moral unassailability. The ultimate trophy that the Western man sought by his dare-devil venture was the Muslim mind itself. In order to rid the West forever of the “problem” of Islam, he reasoned, Muslim consciousness must be made to despair of the cognitive certainty of the Divine message revealed to the Prophet. Only a Muslim confounded of the historical authenticity or doctrinal autonomy of the Qur’anic revelation would abdicate his universal mission and hence pose no challenge to the global domination of the West. Such, at least, seems to have been the tacit, if not the explicit, rationale of the Orientalist assault on the Qur’an.” (From: “Method Against Truth: Orientalism and Qur’anic Studies”, by S. Parvez Manzoor, Muslim World Book Review, Vol. 7, No. 4, Summer 1987, pp. 33-49.)

Need we say more?

Is “Yahweh” Referred to in the Qur’an??

By Ebrahim Saifuddin

There are Christians who tend to make a point that the Bible mentions in Exodus 3:14 that the name of God is “Yahweh” or “Jehovah” (depends on where one puts the vowels) but this name does not appear in the Qur’an. Hence they claim that the Qur’an cannot be the Word of God and Prophet Muhammad ﷺ cannot be a Messenger of God, because there is no reference to the personal name of God which appears in the Old Testament 6823 times.

YHWH (Yahweh) in the Bible

Let’s first read the concerned verse in the Bible in context:

Moses said to God, “Suppose I go to the Israelites and say to them, ‘The God of your fathers has sent me to you,’ and they ask me, ‘What is his name?’ Then what shall I tell them?”
God said to Moses, “I am who I am. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’”
God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘The LORD, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you.’ This is my name forever, the name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation. – [Exodus 3:13-15]

The Hebrew word that is translated as “I AM” in English, is YHWH (known as the Tetragrammaton) which commonly the Christians read as Yahweh or Jehovah by inserting vowels. The Hebrew form of YHWH is as below:

יהוה

The objection which Christians raise is that as we see in Exodus 3:15, God says that this is his name forever thus they say if Prophet Muhammad ﷺ was a Messenger of Allah then he should have made some reference to this personal name of God, Yahweh/Jehovah, to prove that he is really a Messenger of God.

Pronunciation of the word YHWH

“Yahweh” and “Jehovah” are two pronunciations formed by humans much later. Although the Jewish Encyclopedia labels the word “Jehovah” to be a philological impossibility, the Christian world tends to use this pronunciation till this day. Coming back to the pronunciation of this word YHWH, the Catholic Encyclopedia brings it to our attention:

“According to a Rabbinic tradition the real pronunciation of Jehovah ceased to be used at the time of Simeon the Just, who was, according to Maimonides, a contemporary of Alexander the Great. At any rate, it appears that the name was no longer pronounced after the destruction of the Temple.”

Moreover we are also informed by the same encyclopedia that “the modern Jews are as uncertain of the real pronunciation of the Sacred name as their Christian contemporaries” [emphasis added]. Hence one thing has been made apparent that neither the Jews nor the Christians know the true pronunciation of this word. This word was considered to be ineffable by the Jews and thus with time people lost the knowledge of its true pronunciation.

Meaning of YHWH (Yahweh)

As it was made apparent that we do not know how to pronounce the word “YHWH”, we must now look and understand what this word means so as to get an understanding of the word itself. The Jewish Encyclopedia informs us that the meaning of the name “YHWH” is “‘He who is self-existing, self-sufficient’, or, more concretely, ‘He who lives’” [emphasis added]. Hence in simplest of terms “YHWH” means The Living and Self-Subsisting.

Did Biblical Jesus use the name YHWH?

Up till now two things have been made clear; the real pronunciation of the word is not available and that the meaning of this word is “self-existing and self sufficient”, in short “He who lives”. So now it must be established whether Jesus did use this name Yahweh in any place. The only verse which Christendom can quote to try to prove that Jesus used this word is in the Gospel of John which is as below:

“I tell you the truth,” Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!” – [John 8:58]

As we see that the verse consists of the phrase “I am”, the Christians say that Jesus has used the word YHWH. So let us take a look at the Greek version of the verse as we all know that the biblical manuscripts with the Christian world are in the language Greek although there is no concrete evidence that Jesus knew this language.

The words translated as “I am” are: ἐγώ εἰμί
Transliterated as: egō eimi
Pronounced as: eg-o’ i-mee’

So the words used here are “ego eimi” which simply means “I am” – a means of designating oneself. Not only “ego eimi” simply means “I am” as one would use “I am” in their everyday talk in the English language, “ego eimi” is no where near to the meaning of YHWH which is seen above to mean The Living, Self Subsisting. So not only does this not sound anything like the proposed pronunciation of the word YHWH, it does not even carry the meaning of the word.

Was “ego eimi” used Exclusively by Jesus?

The term “ego eimi” which simply means “I am” is used in numerous places in the Bible and there are instances when this term is used by people other than Jesus. Just to give a quick example, the blind man whom Jesus cured uses the same words as well in the Gospel of John:

Some said, This is he: others said, He is like him: but he said, I am he.  – [John 9:9]

Do note the deception which the Christian world uses. In the Greek manuscripts there is no “he” in the text. The verse ends at “I am”. The same phrase “ego eimi” is used in the Greek texts. Due to the absence of “he” in the biblical manuscripts, “Young’s Literal Translation” provides the following translation for the same verse:

Others said — `This is he;’ and others — `He is like to him;’ he himself said, — ‘I am [he].’ – [Young’s Literal Translation of John 9:9]

Notice that the term “he” is placed in parenthesis because this word is not present in the biblical manuscripts. Any form of term that is not in the text being translated should be written in parenthesis to convey the meaning and not cause deception such that people would believe that it is part of the original text.

So by using the phrase “ego eimi” was the blind man suggesting that he was YHWH? Obviously not and no Christian would dare to claim that he was. So then why did he use the term “ego eimi”? Simply because this word means nothing but the same as “I am” in the English language.

Similarly there are other examples in the Bible which prove that this phrase “ego eimi” was not used only by Jesus and it certainly does not hold the meaning of YHWH as seen earlier.

If, however Christendom wants to claim that “ego eimi” refers to “YHWH”, the personal name of God, they have to accept that when traveling from Hebrew to Greek, the word was not used as “YHWH” (Yahweh) but an alternate word(s) was used “ego eimi” which was a reference to the actual name YHWH.

Does Qur’an Make Any Reference to YHWH?

So far we have learnt 4 points which I will list so as to refresh all that we have learnt so far:

⚫ Actual pronunciation of YHWH is lost

⚫ YHWH means “Self-Subsisting”, “The Living”

⚫ Jesus did not use the term “YHWH”

⚫ Christians cannot deny that traveling from Hebrew to Greek another term was used to refer to YHWH.

Thus we see that the Qur’an should have a reference to the term YHWH rather than having the term “YHWH” as the Qur’an was revealed in the Arabic and not the Hebrew. The golden question thus would be was any such reference made to the term “YHWH” in the Quran or by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ?

The answer is a definite “YES”.

We have learnt so far that the meaning of the term “YHWH” is The Living, Self Subsisting and although the term “Allah” is used in the Quran, this word simply means “The God”.

However, we know that Islamic teachings inform us of 99 names (attributes) of Allah and the Quran informs us that to Allah belongs the most beautiful names and we can call him by any of these beautiful names:

He is Allah, the Creator, the Evolver, the Bestower of Forms (or Colours). To Him belong the Most beautiful names: whatever is in the heavens and on earth, doth declare His Praises and Glory: and He is the Exalted in Might, the Wise.  – [Quran 59:24]

Say: “Call upon Allah, or call upon Rahman: by whatever name ye call upon Him, (it is well): for to Him belong the Most beautiful names. Neither speak thy Prayer aloud, nor speak it in a low tone, but seek a middle course between.”  – [Quran 17:110]

Thus we see that there are many different names of Allah, some of which I have listed below:

Al-‘Adl – The Just, The Equitable
Al-‘Afuw – The Pardoner
Al-‘Asim – The Protector
Ad-Dafi` – The Remover of Tribulations
Ar-Rahman Ar-Raheem – The Most Gracious, the Most Merciful

Just like these above-mentioned beautiful names of Allah we also learn of two other names which combined are read as Hayyul-Qayyum:

Hayyul-Qayyum – The Living, Self-Subsisting

YHWH – The Living, Self-Subsisting

Here it has been proven that there is clear reference to the name YHWH in the Qur’an which crumbles the Christian stand that Islam has no reference to the name YHWH and thus Prophet Muhammad ﷺ is not the Messenger of Allah.

Stressed Importance of Hayyul-Qayyum

One of the verses which has Allah referred to by the name Hayyul-Qayyum is in Ayat-ul-Qursi (The Verse of the Throne). Ayat-ul-Qursi has multitude benefits but apart from Ayat-ul-Qursi having its benefits, this verse with “Hayyul-Qayyum” mentioned in it was referred to by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ as the “greatest”:

Ubayy bin Ka’b said: Allah’s Messenger (May peace be upon him) said: O Abu’ al-Mundhir, do you know the verse from the Book of Allah which, according to you, is the greatest? I said: Allah and His Apostle (May peace be upon him) know best. He again said: Abu’l-Mundhir, do you know the verse from the Book of Allah which, according to you, is the greatest? I said: “Allahu La ilaha illa Huwal Hayyul Qayyum.”  Thereupon he struck me on my breast and said: May knowledge be pleasant for you, O Abu’l-Mundhir! – [Sahih Muslim, Book 4, #1768]

In another narration, Prophet Muhammad ﷺ heard the man use “Hayyul-Qayyum” in his supplication and the Prophet ﷺ said that he has supplicated using Allah’s Greatest Name:

Narrated by Anas Ibn Malik: I was sitting with the Apostle of Allah ﷺ and a man was offering prayer. He then made supplication: O Allah, I ask Thee by virtue of the fact that praise is due to Thee, there is no deity but Thou, Who showest favour and beneficence, the Originator of the Heavens and the earth, O Lord of Majesty and Splendour, O Living One, O Eternal One.

The Prophet ﷺ then said: He has supplicated Allah using His Greatest Name, when supplicated by this name, He answers, and when asked by this name He gives. – [Abu Dawood, Book 2, #1490]

Yet another hadith to show the importance stressed by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ on the Hayyul-Qayyum:

Narrated by Asma’ daughter of Yazid: The Prophet (pbuh) said: Allah’s Greatest Name is in these two verses: “And your deity is one deity; there is no deity but He, the Compassionate the Merciful,” and the beginning of Surah Al ‘Imran, A.L.M. “Allahu La ilaha illa Huwal Hayyul Qayyum.”– [Abu Dawood, Book 2, #1491]

Conclusion

With the grace of Allah it can be seen that there is a clear reference to YHWH in the Quran. This reference is much stronger than what the Christians claim to be a reference to YHWH in the New Testament. The word “ego eimi” is in no way the Greek word for YHWH nor does it hold the meaning of YHWH. However as seen, there is a clear reference to the term YHWH in the Quran as well as the Hadith.

The Quran gives us many beautiful names of Allah, some of which have been mentioned above, and a Muslim can call upon Allah with any of his beautiful names unlike the followers of the Bible who do not even know how to pronounce the ‘personal name’ revealed to them. Indeed much of the truth in those books is lost just like the pronunciation of YHWH is lost and the Quran is sent to restore that which is lost – The Criterion.

Some More Beautiful Names of Allah

Al-Ghani – The Self-Sufficient, The Rich Beyond Need

Al-Awwal – The First

Al-‘Aakhir – The Last

Al-Barr – The Source of All Goodness

Al-Baaqi – The Everlasting One

Al-Haqq – The Truth

Al-Khaliq – The Creator

Al-Kafi – The Sufficient One

Ash-Shahid – The Witness

Leviticus 26:1 does not Apply to the Kabah

Some moron pagans allege that Muslims bowing towards the Kabah applies to be “idol-worship” since the OT verse of Leviticus 26:1 prohibits it, but the truth is contrary to the allegation, the following is a brief examination of the verse in question and eventually refutes the whole accusation.

Leviticus 26:1: Nothing to do with Kabah in Makkah.

Leviticus 26:1

26:1 YE SHALL MAKE YOU NO IDOLS nor graven image, neither rear you up a standing image, neither shall ye set up any image of stone in your land, to bow down unto it: for I am the LORD your God.

Analysis:

1. YE SHALL MAKE YOU NO IDOLS

No IDOLS ever exist after the taking back of Makkah by Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. No IDOLS ever exist in Islamic land including Madinah the city of Prophet Muhammad ﷺ. No IDOL ever exist in the home of Muslims.
IDOLATORS and IDOLATRY are condemned by Allah. Allah Ta’ala says that idolatry is SATAN’S DOING.

“O you who have attained to faith! Intoxicants, and games of chance, and idolatrous practices, and the divining of the future are but a loathsome evil of Satan’s doing: ’shun it, then, so that you might attain to a happy state!” [Al-Qur’an 5:90]

“And, Lo, [thus] spoke Abraham unto his father Azar: “TAKEST THOU IDOLS FOR GODS? Verily, I see that thou and thy people HAVE OBVIOUSLY GONE ASTRAY!” [Al-Qur’an 6:74]

2. NOR GRAVEN IMAGE

Nor graven image — פסל, phesel; which signifies any image hewn out of wood or stone. (See: http://biblehub.com/commentaries/leviticus/26-1.htm)

There is no SUCH THING IN KABAH AND AFTER ISLAM.

3. NEITHER REAR YOU UP A STANDING IMAGE

Is the rendering of a Hebrew word (matzebah), which is usually and more correctly translated “pillar” or “statue”

THERE IS NO STATUE IN MASJID AL-HARAM OR SURROUNDING KABAH.

4. TO BOW DOWN UNTO IT

When we bow down, our mind is in owe of Allah. We Muslim never bow down to Kabah or the stone. Allah mentioned it only for QIBLA (ORIENTATION/TOWARD) NOT FOR WORSHIP.

“So from wherever you go out [for prayer, O Muhammad] turn your face TOWARD (QIBLA) al-Masjid al-Haram, and indeed, it is the truth from your Lord. And Allah is not unaware of what you do.”   [Al-Qur’an 2:149]

THERE IS NO COMMAND FROM ALLAH TO WORSHIP KABAH OR THE STONE.

5. NEITHER SHALL YE SET UP ANY IMAGE OF STONE IN YOUR LAND, TO BOW DOWN UNTO IT

Any image of stone — אבן משׁכית, Eben mashchith; STONE OF FIGURE, device, or portraiture; or figured stone, or stone of picture, as we read in the margin; like those in use among the Egyptians, which were full of hieroglyphics, expressing some fancied perfections of their gods. Some, without any authority from the original, would render the words, a stone set up. The simply setting up pillars, or even images, WAS NOT PROHIBITED; BUT ONLY THE SETTING THEM UP TO WORSHIP THEM. (See: http://biblehub.com/commentaries/leviticus/26-1.htm)

WE MUSLIMS DO NOT WORSHIP KABAH OR THE STONE.

Therefore, Leviticus 26:1 has simply NOTHING TO DO WITH KABAH INSIDE MASJID AL-HARAM.

Pagan Easter Sunday – Idolatrous Origins of Easter Beliefs, Coloured Eggs, Rabbits, Pig-Eating, Etc

Christians engage in non-scriptural festivities, Easter has got nothing to do with the Bible.   Not only they are celebrating activities that were not scripturally based, in many cases (such as Xmas trees- prohibition is mentioned in Jeremiah 10). In short, they celebrate occult festivities hiding it with the mask of ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus).

Have you ever wondered where their beliefs come from or why do they do things which they do?? Are Christians attending church for worship or just entertainment purposes only??

The Christians should question why Easter Sunday occurs during spring equinox every year and  what has the spring equinox to do with ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus)? 

Who taught you to believe chocolate rabbits, colored eggs, hanging plastic eggs on trees, Easter baskets, Easter Bonnets, new clothes, going to church on Easter Sunday and Sunrise Services honor ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus)? Have you read this in your Bible, or are these just childhood fables that you are passing on to your children?

I expected to find a credible connection between the celebration of Easter Sunday, with all of its trappings, the Bible and Jesus. Easter Sunday has absolutely nothing to do with the either the Bible nor with ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) or Christianity.

Once I learned about biology, I really became perplexed, because rabbits are mammals and the only two mammals that lay eggs are platiypus and echidna.  

Christians engage in many paganistic behaviors without having any idea why.  The celebration of Easter Sunday is one of these ritualistic traditions where time has obscured the true reasons and origin for this celebration.

The strategy of the Christian missionaries of past and present was to send missionaries into foreign lands and enslave the minds of the citizens. This is done by replacing “pagan” beliefs with Christian beliefs. The technique is to incorporate Christian beliefs and rituals into their “pagan” beliefs and rename their deities. 

Over time, whichever deity the conquered people were worshiping prior to the arrival of Christian missionaries, the name would be gradually changed, and replaced by the Christian deity known as Jesus, while the “heathens/savages” continued engaging in their “pagan” rituals.

Consequently, the Church replaced the “pagan” ritual of Easter with the Jewish “Passover,” and then changed that into the so-called “Resurrection” of Jesus, while maintaining all of the pagan rituals of coloring eggs, rabbits laying eggs, and eating ham (Pig), etc.

The word “Easter” appears in the Bible only once, and it has absolutely nothing to do with the resurrection of Christ. Acts 12:4 says in reference to Peter’s arrest, “And when he had apprehended him, he put him in prison, and delivered him to four quaternions of soldiers to keep him; intending after Easter to bring him forth to the people.”

Easter always, occur on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the spring equinox, which can result in a 2-4 week difference in the date, from one year to another.

Christians worship Easter Sunday as the so-called “resurrection day” for Jesus, which has nothing to do with neither ‘Eesa (alayhissalaam) Jesus nor did the resurrection take place.  On the contrary, Biblically speaking, celebrating Easter in actuality is celebrating a pagan ritual.

In an effort to find the definition and origin of Easter, you need to go outside of the Bible, because there is absolutely no information on the definition of Easter in the text of the Bible.

Easter is a Pagan Festival According to the Bible Itself!

I found out that Acts 12:4 referred to the pagan holiday established during the time of Nimrod (Namrud). According to the Bible, Nimrod built the “Tower of Babel” and began worshiping idols, including pagan deities Moloch and the sun-deity known as Baal (Ba’l is mentioned in Qur’an where Hadhrat Ilyas alayhissalaam (Elijah) criticizes his community for worshiping the pagan idol) which were contrary to the teachings of all the Prophets (alayhimussalaam).

An enemy killed Nimrod, and cut his body into fourteen pieces and scattered them throughout his kingdom. This is a plagiarized version of the ancient Egyptian pagan deity Osiris.

Semiramis wanted to deify her son Nimrod, so she created the myth that Nimrod ascended into heaven and became the “Sun-god” and people was to worship him as the god “Baal.”

Since you cannot have a god without a goddess, Semiramis deified herself by saying she ascended to the moon, which has a 28-day cycle and emits an egg at the end of that cycle.  This egg fell to the earth and Semiramis hatched out of it and her name was changed to Ishtar (pronounced Easter); ergo, the “Easter Egg.”

Semiramis/Ishtar/Easter’s hatching occurred after the first full moon after the Spring Equinox, which at the time, occurred during the Jewish “Passover,” and she became the “Goddess of Fertility.”  She was also known as the “goddess of spring” and the “goddess of prostitutes.”

Legend has it that Nimrod sent a “sun-ray” down to earth and immaculately impregnated Semiramis/Ishtar/Easter and she gave birth to their son who she named Tammuz. 

Like Nimrod, Tammuz was also a mighty hunter and he loved rabbits.

While Tammuz was hunting for rabbits a wild boar (pig) killed him. His mother Semiramis/Ishtar/Easter became very distraught and mourned for her dead son Tammuz, as written in Ezekiel 8:4: “Then he brought me to the door of the gate of the Lord’s house which was toward the north; and, behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz.”

Semiramis/Ishtar/Easter was walking through the forest mourning her loss, when she found an injured bird, which she healed in honor of her son Tammuz by transforming it into a rabbit.

She then decried that on the anniversary of her son Tammuz’s death, rabbits would lay colorful eggs.

The ancient Babylonians hid these eggs and the children would search for them. Today, children are given Easter baskets, with their colorful grass as symbolic representations of bird nests, or should I say, “Rabbit” nests.

To include adults during the celebration of Easter, naked women were painted, using various pastel colors, then they hid in the forest. Men would go “hunting” for them and when found, they would have sex, resulting in sexual orgies.  This is the origin of buying new Easter Bonnets and clothes for the Easter parade to church.

Semiramis/Ishtar/Easter mandated that everyone had to fast for forty days prior to the anniversary of Tammuz’s death, which is the Christian pagan ritual of “Lent.”

After the fast, they placed virgins on the altar and the priests had sex with them. These former virgins gave birth nine months later.

Three months after birth, during the first full moon after the Spring Equinox, they brought their newborn babies back to the altar. The priests would then sacrifice these newborn babies in honor of the god Moloch (Allegedly this still occurs annually at the Bohemian grove,, in California, honoring the pagan God moloch, in fact, the American society itself is based on satanic cults and freemasonry and referred in Bible as “Mystery Babylon”).

And use their blood to color Semiramis/Ishtar/Easter’s eggs.  This is the origin of coloring eggs for Easter.

Pig-Consumption on Easter Sunday

At the end of the forty-day fast (Lent), a celebration feast was held and because he was killed by a pig, on Semiramis/Ishtar/Easter Sunday, everyone would hold a feast with ham being the entrée; ergo, this is the origin of the “Easter Ham.”

In addition, they will serve “hot cross buns” in recognition of Tammuz.

Furthermore, because of the love Semiramis/Ishtar/Easter had for Tammuz, everyone had to end their prayer by making the sign of a “t” across their heart, as many Christians still do, believing they are making the sign of the “Cross.”

Finally, because Nimrod was transformed into Baal, the Sun-god, he is celebrated every Easter by Christians during their “Sunrise services,” which is clearly an abomination to the original teachings of ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus).

The Early Christians Who Believed that ‘Eesa Alayhissalaam (Jesus) Was Saved From Crucifixion

By Abu Zakariya

After the deity of Jesus, the crucifixion is perhaps the most contested issue about his life between Christians and Muslims. Today his death on the cross is taken as an almost indisputable fact of history, to the point where it’s not even questioned. Yet the Qur’an makes the bold claim that he was not crucified. Is it possible that the Qur’an, written some 600 years after Jesus, could be right? This article is going to show that there were in fact early Christian groups who believed that ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) was not crucified, just as the Qur’an proclaims.

WHAT ISLAM TEACHES ABOUT THE CRUCIFIXION

This is what the Qur’an says about the crucifixion of Jesus:

They did not kill him, nor did they crucify him, though it was made to appear like that to them; those that disagreed about him are full of doubt, with no knowledge to follow, only supposition: they certainly did not kill him. God raised him up to Himself. God is almighty and wise. [4:157-158]

We can see that the Qur’an states that ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) was not crucified; rather it was made to appear so. What “though it was made to appear like that to them” means is a topic of discussion among scholars. A major view is that God gave someone else Jesus’ appearance and it was this other person who was substituted for ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) on the cross, causing his enemies to believe that ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) was crucified. We find support for this view in the narrations of one of the companions of Prophet Muhammad (Sallallaahu Alayhi Wasallam), Ibn Abbas (Radhiyallahu Anhu). He stated:

“Just before God raised Jesus to the Heavens, Jesus went to his disciples, who were twelve inside the house. When he arrived, his hair was dripping with water (as if he had just had a bath) and he said, ‘There are those among you who will disbelieve in me twelve times after you had believed in me.’ He then asked, ‘Who among you will volunteer for his appearance to be transformed into mine, and be killed in my place. Whoever volunteers for that, he will be with me (in Heaven).’ One of the youngest ones among them volunteered, but Jesus asked him to sit down. Jesus asked again for a volunteer, and the same young man volunteered and Jesus asked him to sit down again. Then the young man volunteered a third time and Jesus said, ‘You will be that man,’ and the resemblance of Jesus was cast over that man while Jesus ascended to Heaven from a hole in the roof of the house. When the Jews came looking for Jesus, they found that young man and crucified him…” [1]

We can see that the Qur’an and other Islamic sources are crystal clear: Allah saved His beloved messenger from the crucifixion. ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) was raised up to God, alive and unharmed, where he remains until this day. We find support for the Qur’anic crucifixion narrative in history. There were early Christian groups who denied the crucifixion of Jesus, such as the first century scholar Basilides and his followers, the Basilidians. They believed that ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) was saved from the crucifixion and that another, Simon of Cyrene, was crucified in his place:

“The Unborn and Nameless Father seeing their miserable plight, sent his First-born, Nous (and this is the one who is called Christ) to deliver those who should believe in him from the power of the angelic agencies who had built the world. And to men Christ seemed to be a man and to have performed miracles. It was not, however, Christ who suffered, but rather Simon of Cyrene, who was constrained to carry the cross for him, and mistakenly crucified in Christ’s stead…” [2]

The beliefs of Basilides matter because he was living very close to the time of the disciples, and there are even traditions that he got these teachings from disciples of ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) such as Peter [3]. From this account we can see that it’s not the Qur’an that invented this claim that ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) was saved from the crucifixion, it goes back to the earliest time of Church history.

ANSWERING THE CLAIM THAT SUCH GROUPS WERE HERETICAL

Now, critics tend to discredit groups such as the Basilidians by appealing to the writings of Church Fathers who condemned them as heretical. Sadly, nearly all the writings of such groups have perished, and we mostly know of them through the writings of their opponents. It is a well known fact among historians that Church Fathers would exaggerate to the extreme when writing about other Christian sects with whom they did not agree.

For example, the second century theologian Irenaeus claimed that the followers of Valentinus made indiscriminate copulation not only permissible but a desired act for those who are truly spiritual [4], and that the Carpocratians practiced indiscriminate sex and that their theology compelled them to violate every conceivable moral law and ethical norm [5]. Perhaps the most outrageous example occurs near the end of the fourth century in the writings of the bishop Epiphanius, who in his discussion of a group of Gnostic Christians outlines their beliefs and describes their orgiastic and cannibalistic practices. Epiphanius claimed that they indulged in sumptuous feasts, with married couples separating to engage in sexual intercourse with other members of the community [6]. The couples are alleged to have then collected the semen in their hands and ingested it together while proclaiming, “this is the body of Christ.” The couple also collected and consumed the woman’s menstrual blood, saying “this is the blood of Christ” [7]. If for some reason the women became pregnant, the fetus was allowed to develop until it could be manually aborted. Then, claims Epiphanius, it was dismembered, covered with honey and spices, and devoured by the community as a special meal [8].

With the discovery of the Nag Hammadi library in the 20th century we have been able to study the actual writings of a bewildering variety of Gnostic Christians. A lot of the claims made by the Church Fathers against such groups were proven to be false, as far from condoning, let alone promoting, such outlandish moral behavior, their writings urge and assume just the contrary social and personal ethics. One of the few constants among all the Nag Hammadi writings is their ascetic orientation. Gnostic Christians appear to have believed, as a rule, in punishing the body, not indulging it. They endorsed ascetic lifestyles far from the hedonistic debauchery that the Church Fathers alleged. Apparently then, Gnostics were consistently attacked by orthodox Christians as sexually perverse, not because they actually were perverse but because they were the enemy.

In fact, a lot of what we know about the early Church comes from the third century Eusebius, the bishop of Caesarea who pioneered work giving a chronological account of the development of Early Christianity. He is often called the “Father of Church History.” But he is not a reliable source of information as he openly admits to lying in order to propagate what he believes is the truth. In his work, Praeparatio Evangelica (Preparation for the Gospel), Book 12, Chapter 31 is titled as follows [9]:

“That it will be necessary sometimes to use falsehood as a remedy for the benefit of those who require such a mode of treatment.”

Eusebius makes it absolutely clear in his teachings that lying is necessary when it comes to the Gospel message. Chapter 31 reads as follows:

“But even if the case were not such as our argument has now proved it to be, if a lawgiver, who is to be of ever so little use, could have ventured to tell any falsehood at all to the young for their good, is there any falsehood that he could have told more beneficial than this, and better able to make them all do everything that is just, not by compulsion but willingly?”[10]

According to Eusebius it’s okay to lie, it’s okay to hold a false belief, if in the end the lie benefits someone. Eusebius, like most Christians today, held the death and resurrection of Jesus to be an essential belief for salvation. Based on Eusebius’ own principles then, there is no doubt that he would have been willing to lie about other groups who deny the crucifixion in order to protect what he would have seen as an essential truth. For Eusebius, the ends justify the means. It would therefore be difficult to believe that his writings are historically accurate and objective. His representations of competing groups of Christian sects are very likely not impartial.

In summary, we should take any claims of heresy made against early Christian groups who believed that ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) was not crucified, with a pinch of salt. History is written by the winners, and much of what we know about these early groups has been painted by their opponents.

DID GOD DECEIVE THE WORLD?

A charge sometimes made against the Qur’an is that God ‘deceived’ people with the appearance of the crucifixion. The matter of the crucifixion was controversial in the formative years. The Old Testament prophesied that the Messiah would not be harmed. So, the evidence that ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus) the Messiah could not be crucified is present within the Bible. Now, if some people of the past didn’t have access to the Old Testament prophecies about the Messiah and they thought Jesus was crucified, then according to the Qur’an they would not be blameworthy in the sight of God: “God does not burden any soul with more than it can bear…”   [2:286] Here the Qur’an states that God does not hold people to account for what is beyond their capacity. Now that the final revelation, the Qur’an, has been revealed and clears up the misconceptions about ‘Eesa alayhissalaam (Jesus), people have no excuse for ignorance. The test of life is to see if truth is what matters to you, as opposed to what is convenient or fits your desires, and ultimately you are judged on your honest commitment to follow the truth as it appears to you. It’s important to realise that life is a test. God is testing us in this life to distinguish those who believe from those who disbelieve: “Do the people think that they will be left to say, ‘We believe’ and they will not be tried? But We have certainly tried those before them, and God will surely make evident those who are truthful, and He will surely make evident the liars” [29:2-3]. Such a claim about God deceiving us could be made about anything that seems confusing, contradictory or that needs a bit of investigation.

References

1 – Al-Nasa’i, Al-Kubra, 6:489.

2 – Irenaeus, Against Heresies, Book I, Chapter 24, section 4.

3 – Nicholas P. Lunn, The Original Ending of Mark: A New Case for the Authenticity of Mark 16:9-20, p. 349.

4 – Irenaeus , Against Heresies 1,6,3–4.

5 – Irenaeus , Against Heresies, 1,25,4.

6 – Epiphanius , Panarion 26.4.4.

7 – Epiphanius , Panarion 26.4.5–8.

8 – Epiphanius , Panarion 26.5.4–6.

9 – Accessed June 3rd 2017:

http://www.tertullian.org/fathers/eusebius_pe_12_book12.htm

10 – Accessed June 3rd 2017:

http://www.tertullian.org/fathers/eusebius_pe_12_book12.htm#100