My Answer to a Christian Willing to Understand Certain Topics about Islam
By Dr. Mohsen El-Guindy

I participate now and then in websites showing enmity to Islam. My aim is to explain to them what Islam truly is. It is regrettable to see that these sites continue to attack Islam without cessation. They misguide their readers by spreading misconceptions about Islam in a way that might make their non-Muslim readers believe them. One of my posts published in a site attacking Islam (Political Islam) was criticized by one of the readers under the name ‘Ernest’. Although he seemed to be influenced by the misconceptions the site falsely promulgates about Islam, he was willing to understand certain topics about Islam.

Erick says: ‘We know your Koran very well so don’t say we are ignorant.’

Well, Erick, do not pretend that you know the Koran very well. If you knew the Koran very well we wouldn’t have seen from you all the accusations that the Koran is not an authentic Book and the that Muhammad invented We haven’t seen from your reading of the Koran but belying it, rejecting it and disputing about its verses with opposing arguments.

The Koran is not just another book to be read but the Last Testament to the world. The Koran must be read with a pure heart devoid of prejudice, or bias. The reader must be sure that he is reading the Word of His Creator, Allah, and not a moon god or a monkey god as the hate mongers falsely claim. The intention of the reader must be to seek the truth in order to reach guidance and not to find verses that if twisted may serve his own satanic desires and whims. According to the intention of the reader, the Koran may take him to guidance or make him completely lost in the maze of error, and here a reader with bad intentions will bear the sin of knowing the truth but he rejected it knowingly.

The problem with the Jews, the Christians and the non-Muslims in general, is that they think that the Koran is the invention of Muhammad, so they give themselves the right to mock at the religion, belie the Koran, tamper with its verses and slander the Prophet. We Muslims wouldn’t dare make any concessions or tamper with the words of the Koran because we were warned of a severe torment if we change the words from their meanings or take them out of their context. What Allah said we promulgate to the people without any deviation. If people accept it, it is for their own gain, if not, it is for their own loss.

Allah says in the Koran:

“And the word of your Lord has been fulfilled in truth and in justice. None can alter His words, and He is the All-Hearing, the All-Knowing.” [Quran 6: 115].

Muslims will never be apologetic about their religion because they didn’t invent one single word of it. The religion of Islam is all divine, and the Koran is word by word the final Message of Allah to His seal of the prophets Muhammad. Allah’s word to Muhammad is universal. Muhammad was sent to the whole world and not just to a sect or certain people as was the case with all other prophets before him.

Bill Warner, the Chairman of the website ‘Political Islam’ – as he calls himself – based his site on the false interpretation of the word ‘Kafir’. Because he is ignorant of the Arabic language he thought that Kafir means non-Muslims. Consequently, every Koranic verse urging Muslims to fight back the kafirs, it is in fact directed to non-Muslims, meaning that the Koran is a violent religion.

Kafir is a subject based on the verb Kufr. One who commits Kufr is Kafir. Kufr in Arabic dictionary bears three meanings:

To conceal, to be ungrateful, to deny or to reject.

The word Kafir has been used in all these three meanings in the Koran.  

Concealment is associated with possession and endowment. One who possesses nothing precious has no need to hide. The Word of God, the Knowledge given by Him is a most valuable asset a man may possess. All along in the history of mankind, men of knowledge have been concealing from masses the Knowledge they possess so as to exploit them in the name of religion.

Ungratefulness

Gratefulness and ungratefulness are also associated with prize, endowment and bestowment. The servants of Allah had to be grateful to Him because He sent them the Koran in order to take them from darkness to light. If their lives do not bear witness to the teachings of Islam and the Koran, then they are becoming ungrateful or Kafir in Arabic.

Denial or rejection is essentially linked to an order or request or an offer. You cannot deny or reject anything unless an offer has been made to you or you have been ordered or requested something. If I ask someone to bring me a glass of water and he rejects my request I can say that he has rejected my request or denied it. Similarly, if the Last Testament (the Koran) has been sent to  and after you read it you denied or rejected it, so you are also kafir.

All three (concealment, denial and ungratefulness) amount in the Koran to the level of disbelief.

It is an undisputable fact that prior to the Koran, all the previous scriptures revealed by God could not remain safe from human interpolation. Those who made changes in the Word of God were Kafirs. It is also a verifiable truth that among all scriptures, claiming to be Word of God, only the Kuran is unaltered to the last word and letter. This is the biggest endowment of God to the mankind that Muslims claim to possess. This wealth was sent for the whole of mankind.

The Koran teaches that those who conceal Allah’s revelations in the Torah and exchange the truth for a miserable profit simply consume nothing but fire in their bellies. Allah shall ignore them on the Day of Judgment, He shall not absolve them from guilt and they shall be put to the torment.

Those who conceal what in the Book Allah has sent down on them, and sell it for a little price – they shall eat naught but the Fire in their bellies; Allah shall not speak to them on the Day of Resurrection; neither purify them; there awaits them a painful chastisement.

Those are they that have bought error at the price of guidance, and chastisement at the price of pardon; how patiently they shall endure the Fire! (Al-Baqarah 174, 175).

Allah gave Moses the Torah, but his people were disputant about it. And had it not been for Allah’s word which was proclaimed beforehand to put punishment in respite, their hereafter would have been planted in the now.

And We gave Moses the Book; and there was difference regarding it, and but for a word that preceded from thy Lord, it had been decided between them; and they are in doubt of it disquieting (Hud, 110)

In the Quran, Allah Almighty informs us that the Torah was changed; He Says:

“So woe to those who write the “scripture” with their own hands, then say, “This is from Allah,” in order to exchange it for a small price. Woe to them for what their hands have written and woe to them for what they earn.” [Quran 2:79]

 People of the Book! Why do you confound the truth with falsehood and conceal the truth knowingly? (3:71)

The Council of Nicea took place in 325 A.D. by the order of the Roman Emperor Caesar Flavius Constantine. Nicea was located in Asia Minor, east of Constantinople. At the Council of Nicea, Emperor Constantine presided over a group of Church bishops and leaders with the purpose of defining the true God for all of Christianity and eliminating all the confusion, controversy, and contention within Christ’s church. In this council the decision was taken that Jesus is the son of God, and that he is one of three; the father in heaven, the son on earth and the Holy Ghost is acting as an intermediary between them. Many interpretations were introduced by the bishops and priests to explain the nature of this odd relationship between the father and the son, but they were all vague and obscure.

Jesus Christ never once in his gospel, claimed to be ‘The Only Begotten Son of God’. On the contrary, to emphasize his human origin he always referred to himself as ‘son of man’. Those who hide this truth are Kafirs in the eyes of Qur’an.

They say Allah has taken to Him a son.’ Glory be to Him. He is all-sufficient; to Him belongs all that is in the heavens and in the earth; you have no authority for this. Do you say concerning God what you do not know? (10:68)

 Allah assured Muhammad and the whole world that Jesus is not His son, but he was the son of Mary.

That is Jesus, son of Mary, in word of truth, concerning which they are doubting. It is not for God to take a son unto Him. Glory be to Him! When He decrees a thing. He but says to it “Be”. and it is. (19:34-5)

After this strong statement about the nature of Jesus, God directed Muhammad to call the Christians to a fair deal: to worship the one God:

Surely God is my Lord, and your Lord, so serve Him. This is the straight path. (19:38).

The rejection of the idea of God having a son is also reported in another verse:

And they say, ‘The All-merciful has taken unto Himself a son.’ You have indeed advanced something hideous. The heavens are well nigh rent of it and the earth split asunder, and the mountains well nigh fall down crashing for that they have attributed to the All-merciful a son; and it behooves not the All-merciful to take a son. None is there in the heavens and earth but he comes to the All-merciful as a servant. (19:88-93)

The Qur’an recognizes the fact that Jesus had no human father but this does not make him the son of God or God Himself. By this criterion Adam would have been more entitled to be the son of God because he had neither a father nor a mother. So the Qur’an draws attention to the miraculous creation of both in the following verse:

Truly the likeness of Jesus, in God’s sight, is as Adam’s likeness; He created him of dust, then said He unto him, “Be”, and he was. (3:59)

The Koran rejects the concept of the Trinity as strongly as it rejects the Son ship of Jesus. This is because Allah is One. This is the essence of all monotheistic revelations. Three, by reason and by simple arithmetic, are not one. The Qur’an addresses the Christians in the following verses in the chapter entitled “Women”.

People of the Book, go not beyond the bounds in your religion, and say not as to God but the Truth. The Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, was only the Messenger of God, and His Word that He committed to Mary, and a spirit from Him. So believe in God and His Messengers, and say not ‘Three’. Refrain, better is it for you. God is only One God. Glory be to Him — that He should have a son! To Him belongs all that is in the heavens and in the earth, God suffices for a guardian.

The Messiah will not disdain to be a servant of God, neither the angels who are close to Him. Whosoever disdains to serve Him and waxes proud. He will assuredly muster them to Him, all of them.

The oneness and universality of God’s message requires that people accept all the messengers of God. Rejecting one of them amounts to rejecting them all. The Jews reject Jesus’ mission and Muhammad’s mission; the Christians reject Muhammad’s mission; whereas the Muslims accept them all, but reject incorrect historical interpretations and human elements in these missions.

Jesus foretold the coming of Muhammad after him.

 And when Jesus son of Mary said. ‘children of Israel. I am indeed the Messenger to you, confirming the Torah that is before me, and giving good tidings of a Messenger who shall come after me, whose name shall be the praised one (note that this is translation of Ahmad which is Prophet Muhammad’s name). (61:6)

The messenger of whom Jesus gave glad tidings is referred to in both the old and new testaments of the Bible. The Old Testament contains several prophecies that apply only to the Prophet Muhammad. I quote only one of those which apply to none except Prophet Muhammad. This prophecy which was addressed to Moses said that God will send among the ‘brethren’ of the Israelites, a prophet like Moses who will be a founder, a leader, and an exemplar of a community of believers. We read this in the following verses of Deut. Ch. 18:

I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their brethren; and I will put My words in his mouth, and he shall speak to them all that I command him. And whoever will not give heed to My words which he shall speak in My name, I Myself will require it of him. (Deut. 18:18-20)

Anyone who is familiar with Prophet Muhammad’s life can easily see that no one fits the above description better than Prophet Muhammad. It was Prophet Muhammad, not Jesus, who like Moses was born from ordinary parents, got married, founded a faithful community, established a great law and died a natural death.

Careful study of the New Testament shows that this same prophet is referred to by Jesus in John 14:16,17:

And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Counselor, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth.

Later in John specific description of this Spirit of Truth and his role is given as we read in John 16:13,14.:

When the Spirit of Truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak and he will declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify Me…

The teachings of Jesus was the same as those of all the Prophets before him: “Allah is one and serve him alone.”

When Jesus came with clear signs, he said, “Now I have come to you with wisdom and in order to make clear to you some of the (points) on which you dispute. Therefore, fear Allah and obey me. He is my Lord and your Lord, so worship Him…this is a Straight Way. But sects from among themselves fell into disagreement. So woe to the wrongdoers, from the penalty of a grievous Day (43: 63-65).

 To sum up, Islam considers Jesus as one of God’s great prophets. His mission was to preach the Oneness of God and to lead man to his Lord. He never claimed to be other than a servant and a Messenger of God. The Koranic account of his life and mission is supported by overwhelming evidence. The Muslims do believe in and are awaiting the Second Coming of Jesus. He will come back not as God to judge the non-Christians, but as Jesus, God’s servant. His coming is to correct the misconception which people have developed about his personality and his mission. According to a saying of the Prophet Muhammad, he will stay for forty years which is going to be the happiest years of life on this earth. At that time everybody will believe in him as the Messenger, not the Son of God.

The Jews concealed the verses in their Scriptures indicating the advent of Muhammad. They confined Allah to themselves and considered Him as a tribal god. They don’t believe in Jesus and his Gospel, neither do they believe in Muhammad and the Koran. They rebelled against Allah and broke their covenants with Him in many occasions, killed some of His prophets, claimed that Mary is unchaste, used usury in their transactions, and were cursed by the tongue of David and Jesus for their disobedience. All these rebellious events are indicated in the Koran.

The Christians concealed the verses in the Gospel indicating the advent of Muhammad, they deviated from the true teachings of Jesus which was purely monotheistic and invented the concept of Trinity, and the strange dogmas of vicarious atonement, crucifixion, and original sin.

The concealment of the advent of Muhammad in the Jewish Scriptures, considering Allah a tribal god to only the Jews, the Jews rejecting other revelations but their own, Killing the prophets and slandering Mary by being unchaste, using usury in their transactions, believing that they are the chosen people and that only them that they will enter paradise is considered in the sight of Allah as “Kufr”.

Likewise, the Christians concealed what Jesus said about the advent of Muhammad, deviated from worshipping the One and Only God Allah, as Jesus taught them, and invented the concept of Trinity in the council of Nicea in 325 A.D. The Council of Nicea affirmed the deity of Jesus Christ and established an official definition of the Trinity—the deity of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit under one Godhead, in three co-equal and co-eternal Persons. The Christians further invented the strange dogmas of original sin, vicarious atonement and crucifixion. All this is also considered in the sight of Allah as “Kufr”.

It is really amazing to see the Christians when reading the Koran or the Sunna of the prophet, shout and say, “See, how Muslims accuse us of so and so? The point is that no one Muslim would ever dare say something on his own, but these are the words of Allah and His prophet. It is the last warning to the world. Man is free to accept the warning or not. If he accepts it, it is to his own gain, if he rejects it, it is to his own loss. On the Day of Resurrection Allah doesn’t accept disputations or arguments, the reward will be either Hell or Paradise.

 Earnest says: “If Allah hated Kafirs so much, why did he create them in the first place? He’s not so powerful after all.”

Allah didn’t create mankind as disbelievers (Kafirs). He created them all equal, and with souls naturally accepting the worship of the One God, Allah.

Natural disposition which is integral to man’s soul was created by Allah so that man may acknowledge Him as the Lord who has power over all things. Oneness of Allah is integral to man’s disposition because Allah in His infinite wisdom wished that man recognizes Him as the One and only God. This is why man was able to acknowledge his Lord before his existence on earth. This period before man was born into this world is called the pre-existential state of involuntary submission to Allah and of acknowledging Him.

The Covenant was made between Allah and His servants when He drew forth from the children of Adam – from their loins – their descendants, and made them testify concerning themselves saying, “Am I not your Lord?” They said, ‘Yes, we do testify’. Allah said, “Lest you should say on the Day of Judgment: ‘Of this we were never mindful.’

And when thy Lord took from the children of Adam, from their loins, their seed, and made them testify as to themselves, “Am I not your Lord?”
They said, “Yes, we testify” lest you should say on the Day of Resurrection, “As for us, we were heedless of this” or lest you say, ‘Our fathers were idolaters aforetime and we were seed after them. What, will you then destroy us for the deeds of the vain-doers “(Al-A’raf 172, 173).

Thus, mankind entered into a covenant with Allah by their affirmative answer to the question, “Am I not your Lord?” Their answer, “Yes, we testify” is engraved upon the intellect of man as a proof which reminds him of Allah’s Lordship.

Carrying this trust however is not an easy task. In order for man to be nearer to His Creator he must acquire Allah’s attributes such as piety, forgiveness, forbearance, honesty, Justice, Love, Mercy, compassion…etc.

Enjoining these attributes would draw man nearer to his Creator than is possible for any other creature of Allah. This was part of Allah’s will and plan, but little did man realize what a tremendous task he was undertaking. Because man is weak and might fail to carry the trust, Allah’s grace came to his assistance. He made the environment responsive to his needs. He further sent Messengers and Teachers for his guidance. Where man did his best he won through by Allah’s grace, even though man’s best was but a poor good. By carrying this great responsibility man became Allah’s vicegerent on earth. Man must therefore obey Allah’s Covenant with him and abide by it.

The role of the prophets then is to remind people of the Oneness of Allah which is embedded in their natural disposition from the very beginning before the descent of Adam to earth.

The Covenant between Allah and his servants is completed in this way. His servants acknowledged that Allah is their creator, Cherisher and Sustainer. This obligation follows from their nature when it is pure and uncorrupted.

The faculties in man are enough to teach him the distinction between good and evil, to warn him of the dangers that beset his life. There is therefore, no excuse for any individual to say, either that he was unmindful, or that he should not be punished for the sins of his fathers, because his punishment if any come from the personal responsibility and is for his own rejection of faith.

The Covenant made between Allah and humanity necessarily implies Trust, and its breach necessarily implies punishment.

Those who betray the trust (the scrolls of Abraham at the time of Abraham, the Psalms of David at the time of David, the authentic Torah of Moses at the time of Moses, the authentic Gospel of Jesus at the time of Jesus, the Koran of Muhammad at the time of Muhammad) deserve Allah’s wrath, and Hell is the recompense.

Those who remain firm to their faith and their Covenant will receive the aid of Allah’s Grace; their faults and weaknesses will be cured, and they will be made worthy of their exalted destiny, for Allah is Oft-Returning and Most –Merciful.

That Allah may chastise the hypocrites, men and women alike; and idolaters, men and women alike; and that Allah may pardon the believers, men and women alike. Allah is All-Forgiving, All-Compassionate (Al-Ahzab 70, 71, 73).

Because the covenants between Allah and his servants had been breached, and the divine Books were distorted and changed from their original form, Muhammad the seal of the prophets had to come as a last Warner to guide people to renew the old religion of Allah – pure monotheism. He came with a Book well guarded by Allah until the Day of Judgment.

The heart of Islam is the holy Koran, and the heart of the Koran is the radiant affirmation that there is no reality but Allah (God).

This (Koran) is a Message for mankind that they may be warned by it, and that they may know that He is One God, and that men possessed of minds may remember (Ibrahîm, 52).

The Koran supersedes previous revelations because it came directly from Allah, and is not a second-hand book written by men after the extinction of authentic divine Books.

…And We have given thee a Remembrance (the Koran) from us (Taha, 99).

And he who rejects the Koran, not believe in it, nor acts according to its orders, shall have rejected Allah’s mercy and shall bear a heavy burden of sins on the Day of Resurrection, and shall abide in that state in the Fire of Hell, and evil indeed will it be that load for him on the Day of Judgment.

Whosoever turns away from it, upon the Day of Resurrection he shall bear a heavy burden, therein abiding forever; how evil upon the Day of Resurrection that burden for them (Taha 100, 101).

The Koran is a book of law and prayer, a book of wisdom and invocation, a book of divine commands to mankind. It is the Holy Book of wisdom containing all the principles necessary for man’s happiness both in this world and the next.

Allah made the preservation of earlier Scriptures the responsibilities of the followers of these Books. Allah says:

…For to them was entrusted the protection of Allah’s Books, as they were witnesses thereto (Al-Maidah, 44).

But the people of the Book were negligent of this; distorted the Books with their interpolations and the reversal of some facts. The present Gospels, as attested by Christian scholars, were written by historians. They are therefore not totally authentic. Parts of these books are authentic, others are fabricated. The falsehood in them supersedes the truth, especially in those parts which deify Jesus Christ and make him the son of Allah. This distortion however was not a total loss, because Allah wished to send another Scripture whose teachings and principles will serve the good of man and under all conditions.

Allah did not give the responsibility of protecting the Koran to man. Knowing that the Koran was the last revelation to mankind, Allah pledged to protect it Himself from human tampering and guards it from corruption.
It is We who have sent down the Remembrance (Koran) and surely We will guard it (from corruption) (Al-hijr, 9).

Earnest says, “You can you also disclose to people how kafirs (he erroneously means non-Muslims) are to be treated by Muslims as instructed by Allah and Muhammad in the Quran? “

There is a golden rule in Islam: “Man is either a brother in religion or a brother in creation. Both are entitled to honor and full respect.”

Islam urges its followers to behave with courtesy even with their enemies the idolaters who were fighting them in the midst of hostilities (such as war):

And if any of the Idolatries (who are fighting you) seeks thy protection, grant him protection, so that he might [be able to] hear the word of Allah [from thee]; and thereupon convey him to a place where he can feel secure (9: 6).

If Muslims are to behave with such clemency and magnanimity towards the infidels during times of war and conflict, how much more should be expected of their interactions with non-Muslims during times of peace?

 Muslims are ordered to respect the disbeliever’s freedom of choice to be a “Disbeliever” – as this is a right bestowed upon humanity by Allah:

The truth is from your Lord”: it is the free will of any person to believe (in Allah) or to be an Infidel (unbeliever) (18: 29).

Even if a Muslim should be convinced that someone is a non-believer, still he must accept that his fate is in the hands of Allah alone, since no one human can condemn another – this must be left to the judgment of Allah.

For behold, unto  Us  will be their return, Then it will be for Us to Judge (humans) (88: 25, 26).

Those who believe (in the Koran), those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Sabians ( an ancient religion or people with no specific religion), Christians, Magians, and Polytheists,-Allah will judge between them on the Day of Judgment: for Allah (alone) is witness of all things. (22: 17).

The Quran clearly states that Jews and Christians, and others, will be accepted by Allah as long as they believe in His Oneness and do not associate with Him any partners in worship, and perform good deeds according to the teachings of their authentic Books.

 Those who believe (in the Qur’an), and those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Christians and the Sabians,- any who believe in Allah and the Last Day, and work righteousness, shall have their reward with their Lord; on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve (2: 62).

It should be pointed out that at the time of Moses and after his time several Jews believed in Allah’s oneness and followed exactly the teachings of the Torah. Likewise, at the time of Jesus and until 250 years after his departure to his creator, there were devout Christians believing in Allah’s oneness and followed exactly the teachings of Jesus that he is a Prophet and a servant of Allah. Areus of Egypt and his followers are an example of the early Christians worshipping the One God Allah and believing that Jesus is but a Prophet and a servant of Allah.

The Quran forbids Muslims from judging others. This has been expressed clearly in many verses.

 For behold, unto Us will be their return (88:25).
 Then it will be for (only) Us to call them to account (88:26).

The search for Truth – the desire to find the Divine – is in itself a great task, even if the seeker never ascertains absolute Truth. The act itself possesses great intrinsic value and is demonstrative of a willing heart.

As God plainly reveals in his Holy Quran:

And those who strive in Our paths to find Us, We will certainly guide them to our Paths: For verily Allah is with those who do right (29:69).

 Jesus is recorded in the scriptures as saying, “Judge not lest ye be judged…and by the same measure you judge others by, so too will you be judged.”

It is for this reason that Allah said to Prophet Mohamed in his Holy Quran :

 Say: “I am not an innovation among the Messengers, and I know not what shall be done with me or with you. I only follow what is revealed to me; I am only a clear Warner (46:9).

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