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June 9th, 2009

Did 100% of the scholars from Muhammad to HMGA believe Jesus was alive in heaven?

In a comment Bashir writes:

“100% of the scholars from Muhammad to HMGA all unanimously agreed on the idea that Jesus was alive in heaven…”

Bashir says that Hazrat Mirza sahib made statements of certainty (e.g. about age of Jesus) while he should really have been more careful and said “may be”. But Bashir himself goes on making statements of certainty such as the above. “100% of all scholars”? So if even one accepted scholar of repute didn’t agree, it would disprove Bashir’s claim!

Another example of Bashir’s reasoning is this. He says Hazrat Mirza sahib was wrong on the birth of Jesus, and he was wrong about the tomb of Jesus. So, on the first issue, where HM agreed with the vast majority Muslim opinion, he was wrong, and on the second issue where he disagreed with (according to Bashir) 100% of scholars, HM was still wrong!

A question arising from this “100%” of scholars” claim is: how did those general Muslim scholars after the time of HM who believed in the death of Jesus reach that conclusion? They must have found that before their time it was only the reviled figure of HM and his oddball followers who believed in the death of Jesus and no other Muslim whatsoever. So what made them break the 100% consensus?

32 Responses to “Did 100% of the scholars from Muhammad to HMGA believe Jesus was alive in heaven?”

  1. Once again, I thank ZA for allowing to voice my personal opinion, even though it may be wrong, I try to admit to all my mistakes. 

    ZA:  Honestly, I am not even sure if 100% of the tafsirs and muslim scholarly opinion agree on this point.  I probably should have researched it before I wrote it.  I am quite sure.  Please enlighten me, what mujadid claimed that Jesus was “permanently” dead?  What tafsir tells us that Jesus is “permanently” dead?  WHat hadith eludes tot he point that Jesus is “permanently” dead? 

    What if Allah was so upset that the Christians built a religion on shirk, what if allah decided to raise Jesus from the dead to correct this problem, that Jesus himself indirectly caused?  What if Allah was so upset that the Jews tried to crucify one of his prophets that Allah deemed it fit to return that prophet to the “people of the book”, to correct all the wrong beliefs. 

    From what I have read, Ibn Kathir, Bukhari, Tabari, Ibn Taymiyyah, Ibn Arabi, basically all the mujadids.  They all agreed on the point that Jesus was still alive.  Just like they unanimously agreed on the terminaton of prophethood, with Jesus’ return the lone exception. 

    Allah should have sent messages to the mujadids throughout the years, allah should have explained to them that Jesus was really dead, that would have solved all the problems.  

    FYI:  The hadith that a mujadid will come every century onyl appears in Abu Daud, it fails to appear in any other book of tradition.  Remember the two sahih’s hold the highest authority.  Because of this strange fact, I can’t accept this promise of the revivers.   

    My personal opinion is that Jesus escaped the crucifiction(some how), then Allah caused him to die of natural causes(some how), then allah raffa’d him(somehow).  Maybe Jesus is dead in heaven, maybe he is in a state of sleep, maybe Allah will rise him from the dead?  I dont know.  That is my answer.  The Koran is not clear enough.  The Koran also tells us that the Jews and christians  were unsure where Jesus went, they relied on conjecture.  But then the Koran leaves the story up in the air for muslims as well.  Then the Koran doesnt speak of the return of Jesus, at all, no mention whatsoever.  How easy would it have been for Allah to tell us in the Koran that Jesus was dead and buried in India. 

  2. In my opinion, Bashir’s whole line of questions and arguments seem to stem from a basic underlying philosophical paradox.  If this can be answered then maybe we can bring an end to this line of debate, if not then this can go on and on…

    The so called paradox is that if God is merciful and all powerful then why does he not simply do a kun fa yukoon type of act and make every human aware of the ultimate truth.  In regards to the current debate before asking why Allah does not tell us in the Quran if Jesus is dead and buried in India, is it not more pertinent to ask why does Allah bother with this whole prophet, revealed book, warning, punishment business, when the ulitmate goal can be achieved otherwise with no problem whatsoever?

  3. 1. I am curious, what mujadids or scholars/tafsirs believed(or wrote) that Jesus was dead from the HP to HMGA?

    2.  Which ones wrote that he lived to 120 or was it 125?

    3.  Did HMGA ever quote any other muslim in terms of the death of Jesus?

    4.  When did the mulsims change their belief to the physical ascension of Jesus.  In other words where is the “smoking gun”.  

    Here is a list of the mujadids from the first century of Islam:

    1st Century (after the prophetic period) (August 3, 718)

    Ibn Shihab al-Zuhri(AHLE SUNNAT WA AL-JAMA’ATH )
    Umar ibn Abd al-Aziz (682 – 720; see also Umayyad)(AHLE SUNNAT WA AL-JAMA’ATH )
    Hasan al-Basri (642 – 728 or 737)(AHLE SUNNAT WA AL-JAMA’ATH )
    Abu Hanifa an-Nu‘man (699 – 767; see also Hanafi)(AHLE SUNNAT WA AL-JAMA’ATH )
    Malik ibn Anas (715 – 796; see also Maliki)(AHLE SUNNAT WA AL-JAMA’ATH )

    5.  Did any of these guys think that Jesus was dead?

    6.  Exactly when did muslims adopt the belief that Jesus was alive?  Was it the first century, second century…..

    Maybe they did, maybe they didn’t, honestly I don’t know.  I seriously doubt that any muslim scholar from the HP to HMGA ever wrote that Jesus was not alive in heaven awaiting an awesome return.  

    Sir Syed Khan is the exception to the rule.  Of course he wrote in his koranic commentary that Jesus was dead.  Many writers have wrote that this was the inspiration that HMGA acted upon.  Sir Syed Khan also invented the a swoon theory, I’m not sure how closely HMGA’s swoon theory resembles the original idea of the syed. 

    Anyhow I was speaking in terms of the Islamic mujadids and jurists.  I think that they were 100% in consensus on the status of Jesus after his raffa. 

  4. For Usman:

    OK, I lose in terms of why Allah just didnt inform the mujadids or HMGA as to the location of the tomb, and in clear words, nothing vague.  I know I can’t win with this type of logic.  I will drop this type of logic. 

    I think their is a verse in christian lore which is:  “The lord works is mysterious way”.  I know that this is the logic that religious people cling to.  I know that I can’t beat it.  Maybe allah just decided to operate in the manner that he did.  I give up as to why?

    So there you have it,  I wont argue from this line of reasoning. 

  5. June 11th, 2009 at 2:37 am
    From Omar Raja:

    Bashir says:

    Please enlighten me, what mujadid claimed that Jesus was “permanently” dead?  What tafsir tells us that Jesus is “permanently” dead?  WHat hadith eludes tot he point that Jesus is “permanently” dead?  

    From what I now gather,  Bashir accepts that Jesus died of natural causes, yet maintains that he will return to this very life on earth in the same person; in other words, in exclusion to all the other Prophets,  Jesus will physically resurrect from the dead, a view that rings quite familiar in the world of Christendom!

    The Gospels do not even give credence to this belief, for when his disciples supposing him to be a spirit after post-crucifixion events, on the mistaken account of having him believed to die upon the cross, became frightened, Jesus reassured them “a spirit hath not flesh and bones as ye see me have,” (Luke 264:39). Yet with such clear statements showing the truth to the matter of not dying upon the cross, of  not physically resurrecting from the dead,  how many have turned a blind eye.

    Moreover, the Qur’an makes it abundantly clear that the physically dead can not return to this earthly life:

    It is Allah that takes the souls (of men) at death; and those that die not (He takes) during their sleep: those on whom He has passed the decree of death, He keeps back (from returning to life), but the rest He sends (to their bodies) for a term appointed verily in this are Signs for those who reflect” (Qur’an 39:42) 
    (In Falsehood will they be) Until, when death comes to one of them, he says: “O my Lord! send me back (to life),- “In order that I may work righteousness in the things I neglected.” – “By no means! It is but a word he says.”- Before them is a Partition till the Day they are raised up” (Qur’an 23:99-100).

    Referring to John the Baptist in the Qur’an we read: “And peace on him the day he was born and the day he died and the day he is raised to life” (Qur’an 19:15) 
    And with Jesus speaking: “And peace on me the day I was born, and the day I die, and the day I am raised to life.” (Qur’an 19:33).

    And of all mankind:  “Therein (i.e. on the earth or physical world) shall you live, and therein shall you die, and therefrom shall you be raised.” (Qur’an 7:25)

    Yet you some how maintain: The Koran is not clear enough !
    As if God has erred!

    Please See: The Death of Jesus according to Islamic Sources for a detailed discussion.

    Lastly, the Qur’an is not a history book, such that it should record the burial place of every Prophet of God, or for that matter a written biography of the Holy Prophet Muhammad! Regaring the burial place of Moses, strong evidence through research has shown that the burial place of Moses is in Kashmir: See pp. 279-283 of Khwaja Nazir Ahmad’s book, Jesus in Heaven on Earth

    In the like manner, evidence points to Kashmir as the burial place of Jesus. Up to the event of the crucifixion, Jesus had only preached the Gospel to two of the tribes of Israel, namely Judah and Benjamin, in his first few years of his ministry. He still had to account for the lost ten tribes of Israel, as he was sent for the Bani Israel (Jacob), i.e. the Children of Israel.

    And will make him a messenger unto the children of Israel (Qur’an 3:49).

    Khwaja Nazir Ahmad’s book gives a list of literally hundreds of tribes, casts, and sub-casts, of Hebrew Biblical names as found in Kashmir and Afghanistan. This is by no means any coincidence. This Jewish origin bears strong testimony to Jesus traveling there, especially in light of this verse: “And We made the son of Mary and his mother a sign, and We gave them refuge on a lofty ground having meadows and springs” (Qur’an 23:50) since Kashmir is especially known for its numerous meadows and springs. Also, there is tradition of a prince Prophet Yuz Asaf (Jesus the gatherer) that visited Kashmir 2,000 years ago with his teaching known as the Bushra or Gospel that very much parallels the teachings at to be within the Gospels of the New Testament. And lastly, in light of the facts,  it can be understood why Jesus bears the title of Al Masih, or one whom travels much.

  6. For Omar:  thanks for the comments.  I appreciate all types of feedback.  

    I had read from M. ali and the AMI’s koran’s this verse:

    Chapter 3 Verse 55:
    When Allah said, ‘O Jesus, I will cause thee to die a natural death and will exalt thee to Myself, and will clear thee from the charges of those who disbelieve, and will place those who follow thee above those who disbelieve, until the Day of Resurrection; then to Me shall be your return, and I will judge between you concerning that wherein you differ.

    I read this and had to conclude that Jesus was caused to die before he was raised.  But I just researched this today from the University of Southern California’s database, here is the alternate translation of the above text:
    See this link
    YUSUFALI: Behold! Allah said: “O Jesus! I will take thee and raise thee to Myself and clear thee (of the falsehoods) of those who blaspheme; I will make those who follow thee superior to those who reject faith, to the Day of Resurrection: Then shall ye all return unto me, and I will judge between you of the matters wherein ye dispute.
    PICKTHAL: (And remember) when Allah said: O Jesus! Lo! I am gathering thee and causing thee to ascend unto Me, and am cleansing thee of those who disbelieve and am setting those who follow thee above those who disbelieve until the Day of Resurrection. Then unto Me ye will (all) return, and I shall judge between you as to that wherein ye used to differ.
    SHAKIR: And when Allah said: O Isa, I am going to terminate the period of your stay (on earth) and cause you to ascend unto Me and purify you of those who disbelieve and make those who follow you above those who disbelieve to the day of resurrection; then to Me shall be your return, so l will decide between you concerning that in which you differed.

    There appears to be controversy on this translation.  That changes my entire view of what happened.  I am so glad that this site exists, this site has allowed me to learn so much about Islamic theology. 

    So HMGA translated these words as “die of natural causes”, while most of the other muslim scholars translated it differently. 


  7. June 11th, 2009 at 8:09 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    Here are some other translations.

    1. George Sale of England, first translator of the Quran from Arabic to English (18th century):

    “When God said, O Jesus, verily I will cause thee to die, and I will take thee up unto me,…”

    2. Rev. J.M. Rodwell of England, second translator (19th Century):

    “Remember when God said, “O Jesus! verily I will cause thee to die, and will take thee up to myself…”

    3. Muhammad Asad (1962):

    “Lo! God said: “O Jesus! Verily, I shall cause thee to die, and shall exalt thee unto Me,…”

    4. QXP translation:

    “O Jesus! I will cause you to die of natural causes, I will exalt you in honor  …” See this link. (This translator has written a virulently anti-Ahmadiyya book entitled Hashish from Qadian.)

    5. Ghulam Ahmad Parwez’s interpretation:

    “Jesus’ enemies conspired to crucify him but Allah said to him. “Be assured! their conspiracy will not succeed. You will fulfil your mission and die a natural death (5/177). You will be exalted.”

    (See this link.)

    6. Mohamed and Samira Ahmed’s lexical translation:

    “When God said: “You Jesus I am, I am making you die and raising you to Me…” (link)

    7. Regarding the Free Minds translation, other sources quote their translation as:

    “O Jesus, I will let you die, and raise you to Me, and cleanse you of those who have rejected, and make those who have followed you above those who rejected until the Day of Resurrection;”

    BUT on the Free Minds website itself, their translation reads:

    “O Jesus, I will terminate your life, and raise you to Me, and cleanse you of those who have rejected, and make those who have followed you above those who rejected until the Day of Resurrection.”

    and the whole Quran translation is described as updated on 22 August 2008.

  8. ZA:  Thanks for the clarity, I didnt realize that their was a debate on this verse.  I am learning as we go…..

    I am more interested in the translations of this verse from the early Islamic period, I think those people would have better grip on what this meant. 

    I wonder what Tabari wrote.  What about Bukhari?  What about Ibn Abbas?  The early Islamic jurist should have more credibility than the people who came in the last couple of centuries. 

    Tabari’s tafsir was used heavily by Suyuti, Ibn kathir and many many others. 

    What arabic word is this anyways?  How can it have variant meanings? 

    Here is Suyuti’s trans:
    “And mention, when God said, ‘O Jesus, I am gathering you, seizing you, and raising you to Me, away from the world without death, and I am cleansing you of, removing you far away from, those who disbelieved, and I am setting those who follow you, those Christians and Muslims who believed in your prophethood, above those who disbelieved, in you, namely, the Jews, becoming above them through [definitive] argument and the sword, until the Day of Resurrection. Then to Me shall be your return, and I will decide between you, as to what you were at variance about, as regards religion.”

    Here is Tafsir Ibn Kathir:

    . And (remember) when Allah said: “O `Isa! I will take you and raise you to Myself and purify ﴿save﴾ you from those who disbelieve, and I will make those who follow you superior to those who disbelieve till the Day of Resurrection. Then you will return to Me and I will judge between you in the matters in which you used to dispute.” (56. “As to those who disbelieve, I will punish them with severe torment in this world and in the Hereafter, and they will have no helpers.”) (57. And as for those who believe and do righteous good deeds, Allah will pay them their reward in full. And Allah does not like the wrongdoers.) (58. This is what We recite to you of the verses and the Wise Reminder.)

  9. The current thread of Jesus – dead or alive – highlights the role of reason in the matters of faith and understanding of Quran:

    13:03. Verily, in all this there are messages indeed for people who think [Asad]

    And for those not using their reason:

    8:22. Verily, the vilest of all creatures in the sight of God are those deaf, those dumb ones who do not use their reason

    Quran and Islam do not need crutches of non-verifiable historical miracles and a blind faith from its followers, for the mere fact that Islam by its very nature is useful and non-trapping:

    12:108. Say, `This is my path. I call to Allâh. I am on sure knowledge verifiable by reason and (so are) those who follow me. (I believe that) Holy is Allâh. I am not of the polytheists.’ [Nooruddin]

    Quran thus sets the standards for knowledge verifiable by reason, a.k.a. science.

  10. June 13th, 2009 at 3:20 am
    From Omar Raja:

    The following are some of my notes I’ve compiled regarding the death of Jesus, much of the source material borrowed or taken from:

    The Death of Jesus by Maulana Hafiz Sher Mohammad translated into English from Urdu by Dr. Zahid Aziz

    A non-Ahmadi website, Is Jesus Dead or Alive by Nadeem Quraishi
    The Holy Qur’an Translation/Commentary by Maulana Muhammad Ali

    The Religion of Islam by Maulana Muhammad Ali

    Christianity:  A Journey from Facts to Fiction by Mirza Tahir Ahmad

    English rendering of Jesus in India by Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad

    And for their saying: We have killed the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah, and they killed him not, nor did they cause his death on the cross, but he was made to appear to them as such. And certainly those who differ therein are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge about it, but only follow a conjecture, and they killed him not for certain. Nay, Allah exalted him in His presence. And Allah is ever Mighty, Wise (Qur’an 4:157-158, Maulana Muhammad Ali translation).

    When Allah said: O Jesus, I will cause thee to die and exalt thee in My presence (Ya Isa, inni mutawaffika wa rafi’uka ilaiya) and clear thee of those who disbelieve and make those who follow thee above those who disbelieve to the day of Resurrection. Then to Me is your return, so I shall decide between you concerning that wherein you differ. (Qur’an 3:55) 

    Pickthall’s translation is, O Jesus, I am gathering thee, and this is the Biblical idiom for causing to die. (see Genesis 25:7-8, Gen. 35:28-29, Gen. 49:33, in regards to Isaac, Jacob, and Abraham)

    The words “And Allah raised him” or “Allah exalted him” in 4:158 and 3:55 have been used as evidence for the physical ascension of Jesus, however as will be shown these words mean that he was not disgraced, but raised in honor and dignity, from the falsehood which his enemies tried to place upon him. 

    Ibn Abbas (companion of the Holy Prophet) says that the significance of mutawaffi-ka is mumitu-ka, i.e. I will cause thee to die (Bukhari. 65:12), thus Jesus is dead according to 3:55. 

    Also: “It is reported from Ibn Abbas that the Holy Prophet said in a sermon: O people! You will be gathered to your Lord (on the day of Judgment) … and some people from my Umma will be taken and dragged towards hell. I shall say: ‘O Lord, but these are my people’. It will be replied: ‘You do not know what they did after you’. Then I shall say as did that righteous servant of God (i.e., Jesus) say: ‘I was a witness of them so long as I was among them, but when Thou didst cause me to die (tawaffaitani) Thou wast Watcher over them’ [5:117]…” (Bukhari, Kitab al-Tafsir, under Surah Ma’idah)

    Now the Holy Prophet Muhammad is quoting the words of Jesus from 5:117 of what he will say on the Day of Judgment and all Muslims agree that when the Holy Prophet Muhammad uses the words, that meaning of tawaffaitani is thou did cause me to die. Since Jesus used those same exact words, it can only mean the exact same thing, i.e. he died. 

    Jesus says: “I said to them naught save as Thou didst command me: Serve Allah, my Lord and your Lord; and I was a witness of them so long as I was among them, but when Thou didst cause me to die (tawaffaitani) Thou wast the Watcher over them. And Thou art Witness of all things” (Qur’an 5:117).

    Jesus says in all that time he was among his people, they had the correct beliefs, so to say Jesus is going to come back on earth physically, means Christians should not have deviated from the Truth yet! (but obviously they have since today many Christians believe Jesus is part of the trinity and is God even).  The fact of the matter is, Jesus was made into a “god” after his death.

    Also, there are a number of verses in the Qur’an where Allah used the word “wafat” that has always been translated as death: 2:234, 2:240, 3:193, 4:15, 4:97, 6:61, 7:37, 7:126, 8:50, 10:46, 10:104, 12:101, 13:40, 16:28, 16:32, 16:70, 39:42, 40:67, 40:77, 47:27 etc. 
    And secondly, the true meaning of the word ‘rafa’ (raise) in 3:55 and 4:158 is exalt in honor and/or exalt in spiritual dignity, not to raise physically, and that is made clear by the context: “clear thee of those who disbelieve” 

    The Jews wanted to have Jesus die a disgraceful death on the cross, that would bring on him shame and the curse of God, but Allah said, he would “clear thee (Jesus) of those who disbelieve”  from those false charges. He would not be humiliated or disgraced.

    Had Jesus died on the cross the Hebrew Bible says he would have been accursed of God: Deut 21:22-23 “And if a man have committed a sin worthy of death, and he be put to death, and thou hang him on a tree:  His body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day for he that is hanged is accursed of God that thy land be not defiled, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.” 

    But Allah promised Jesus he would be exalted, and cleared, and raised in dignity and honor like previous prophets. 

    4:159 further states: “And there is none of the People of the Book but will believe in this before his death; and on the day of Resurrection he will be a witness against them” 

    In some translations bihi is translated as in him in the phrase layu’minanna bihi, which can also be correct, however, looking at the context, we can see 4:157 is clearly referring to the event of the crucifixion. The Jews and Christians must both believe in the death of Jesus on the cross for different theological reasons; the Jews must believe in his death to accept him as a false claimant to being the Messiah and Prophet, while the Christians must accept his death on the cross as their sinless sacrifice that atoned for the sins of mankind and became a curse to redeem them the curse of the Law according to Paul in Galatians 3:13. However, Jesus says “he will be a witness against them” on the Day of Resurrection, that he did not die on the cross. Had bihi been referring to Jesus, he could not be a witness against them if they truly accepted him as a Messenger of Allah, and would therefore pose as a contradiction in itself. 

    It is interesting to note, regarding the Prophet Idris (Enoch), Allah says in Surah Maryam: “And We raised him to an elevated state” (wa rafa’naa hu).  (Qur’an 19:57) and some early Muslim commentators did believe that Idris was raised alive to heaven, because they were under the influence of Christian and Jewish tradition: It is still interpreted by Christians and Jews to mean that “took him” means a physical ascension in the verse: “Enoch walked with God, and he was not, for God took him.” (Gen 5:24).

    But we know the Raf (ascension) of Idris was exaltation in rank and not his bodily ascension to upper regions. 

    Other examples of exaltation of Prophets

    The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) was exalted: “And We have exalted for you your mention” (wa rafa’ na) (Qur’an 94:4).

    Abraham was exalted
    : “We exalt in degrees whom We please” (narfa’u darazaa) (Qur’an 6:84). 

    All good deeds are raised towards Allah
    . “all pure speech and all good deed — He exalts it”  (yarfa’uhu.) (Qur’an 35:10).

    Also the 3:55 and 4:158 says the raf of Jesus was towards Allah and not heaven, so the idea of being raised to heaven should not even come up.

    Abdullah Yusuf Ali acknowledged this view in his first edition, which in regards to his footnote for 4:158 where he states “There is difference of opinion as to the exact interpretation of this verse. The words are: The Jews did not kill Jesus, but God raised him up (rafa’u) to Himself. One school holds that Jesus did not die the usual human death, but still lives in the body in heaven; another holds that he did die (v. 117) but not when he was supposed to have to be crucified, and that his being “raised up” unto God means that instead of being disgraced as a malefactor, as the Jews intended, he was on the contrary honoured by God as His Apostle; see also next verse. The same word rafa’a is used in association with honour in connection with Mustafa [Muhammad] in 94:4.

    Further evidence from the Qur’an:

    1. All Prophets before Jesus are dead: “The Messiah, son of Mary, was only a messenger; messengers before him had indeed passed away.” (5:75)

    And worded in the same way here, all Prophets before Muhammad (pbuh) must be dead: “And Muhammad is only a messenger — messengers have already passed away before him. If, then, he dies or is killed, will you turn back upon your heels?” (3:143) 

    “And We granted abiding for ever (khuld) to no mortal before you (O Muhammad). If you die, will they abide (khalidun)” (Qur’an 21:34). 

    The Qur’an says all “gods” are dead
    : “And those whom they call on besides Allah created nothing, while they are themselves created. Dead (are they), not living. And they know not when they will be raised.” (16:20-21) 

    Jesus taken for a “god”
    : “Certainly they disbelieve who say: ‘Allah, He is the Messiah, son of Mary’.” (5:72) 

    Logically speaking, Jesus must therefore be dead since Christians made him into a “god.”

    2. Also, Jesus coming again contradicts the finality of Prophethood: “Muhammad is not the father of any of your men, but he is the Messenger of Allah and the last of the prophets.” (33:40) 

    And you can’t say Jesus will be demoted because the Qur’an says: “Jesus said: I am a servant of God: He has given me the Book and made me a prophet, and made me blessed wherever I may be.” (19:30-31) 

    Jesus came only for the Children of Israel, and not for the Muslim Ummah
    : And he will speak to the people when in the cradle and when of old age, and (he will be) of the good ones… And will make him a messenger unto the children of Israel (3:46, 49).

    3. Referring to John the Baptist in the Qur’an we read: “And peace on him the day he was born and the day he died and the day he is raised to life” (Qur’an 19:15) 

    And with Jesus speaking: “And peace on me the day I was born, and the day I die, and the day I am raised to life.” (Qur’an 19:33).

    Had 19:15 been referring to Jesus, obviously then the same words would be used, and had 19:33 been referring to John the Baptist the same words would also have been used. 

    4. Jesus had to live and die on earth, since the Qur’an says: “Therein (i.e. on the earth or physical world) shall you live, and therein shall you die, and therefrom shall you be raised.” (7:25) 

     “From it (i.e. the earth) We created you, and into it We shall return you, and from it raise you a second time.” (20:55) 

    5. Upon the Prophet’s death Abu Bakr (ra) said at the death of the Prophet: “Whoever among you worships Muhammad, Muhammad has indeed died; but whoever worships Allah, Allah lives on for ever, never dies. Allah says: ‘Muhammad is only a messenger; messengers before him have indeed passed away…’ (the Qur’an, 3:144).” (Bukhari, Kitab al-Mughazi)

    “By God, it was as if the people did not know that God had revealed this verse until Abu Bakr recited it. Then (it was as if) the people had learnt it from him; and whomever one heard, he was reciting this verse (i.e. ‘Muhammad is only a messenger; messengers before him have indeed passed away…’)” (Bukhari, Kitab al-Jana’iz)

    Umar (ra) said: “I was so shocked that my feet could not support me and I fell to the ground when I heard him recite it (i.e. the verse) that the Holy Prophet had indeed died.” (ibid., Kitab al-Mughazi)

    Had Umar (ra) believed any Prophet before Muhammad (pbuh) was alive, then he would have raised that objection, but he did not do so.

    6. The Holy Prophet Muhammad came after Jesus, i.e. after the death of Jesus according to 61:6.
    “And when Jesus, son of Mary, said: O Children of Israel, surely I am the Messenger of Allah to you, verifying that which is before me of the Torah and giving the good news of a Messenger who will come after me, his name being Ahmad. But when he came to them with clear arguments, they said: This is clear enchantment (Qur’an 61:6).

    It does not state after his physical ascension. If for example, we read: “And We sent after them in their footsteps Jesus, son of Mary, verifying that which was before him of the Torah” (Qur’an 5:46), would anyone conclude anyone before Jesus remained alive? No. Thus, one should not do the same when reading 61:6. 

    7. Even in the Bible, there in no proof for the physical ascension of Jesus. “Matthew and John don’t mention the subject the ascension. Mark 16:19 and Luke 24:51 mention it, but recent scientific and scholarly investigations have proved the accounts contained in both these Gospels as later interpolations – non existent in original texts. Codex Sinaiticus, 4th century, oldest manuscript has Mark ending at chapter 16, verse 8. Also Gospel of Luke 24:5 in Codex Sinaiticus does not contain the words ‘taken up to heaven’, therefore there is no reference at all to the ascension in the oldest manuscripts of the Gospels.

    Even if it was stated that he ascended to heaven, it would have meant figuratively that he had gone to a safe place. The term ‘heaven’ was used for any high raised place, as for instance we read in Exodus 19-20, that the Lord came down upon Mount Sinai on the top of the mount and spoke to Moses. But in v. 22 of ch. 20 the word ‘heaven’ is used instead of the top of the mountain. Moreover we read in shab. 89a Ex. R. IXI: “Before Moses ascended to Heaven he said that he would descend on the forenoon of the 41st day” (Jewish Encyclopedia word Moses). And in Exodus 24-28 it is clearly stated that Moses was in the mount 40 days and 40 nights, similarly Jesus was taken up on top of the Mount Olives and a cloud received him out of their sight. As the disciples saw him going up at the top of the mount according to the aforesaid usage they said he went to heaven.” [Tahir Ahmad]

    Acts 1:3 “After his suffering, he showed himself to these men and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God.” Acts 1:10-11 “And while they looked steadfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white {apparel;} Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven.” (KJV)

    What happened to Jesus?  His “death” on the cross was not death in the medical sense; his resurrection was really a resuscitation; and his “ascension” was a departure to preach to the lost ten tribes of Israel.

    Common knowledge tells us he never left the land of Judea up to the event of the crucifixion, and thus only preached to two of the tribes of Israel, and still had to account for the lost ten tribes of Israel. Jesus had said, “And other sheep I have which are not of this fold, them also I must I bring, and they shall hear my voice and there shall be one fold and one shepherd” (John 10:16). 

    In the great Diaspora some 700 years before the birth of Christ, the ten tribes of Israel had been scattered, driven out of Israel by Nebuchadnezzar, a King of Babylon. Not all had returned. It was therefore to these lost 10 tribes that Jesus was referring to of whom the Gospel had yet to reach. 

    Jesus, “the chief of the travelers,” was not dead when he was removed from the cross, and went on to complete his mission and preach to all the tribes of Israel, as he was sent for the Children of Israel. Thus his ministry did not only last for a mere one or two years, for such a blessed and great Prophet as the Messiah Jesus, son of Mary.

    Maulana Muhammad Ali says: Jesus Christ is said to have been called Messiah (Al Masih) because he used to travel much, or because he was anointed with a pure blessed ointment with which the prophets are anointed. It is, however, the first significance, viz., that Masih means one who travels much that finds the foremost acceptance with the commentators as well as the lexicologists. And this lends support to the evidence recently discovered which shows that Jesus traveled in the East after his unfortunate experience at the hands of the Syrian Jews, having recovered from the shock and the wounds of crucifixion, preached to the lost ten tribes of the Israelites who had settled in the East.

    In this connection, see also 23:50, where Jesus is spoken as having been afforded shelter in a hilly tract of land. “And We made the son of Mary and his mother a sign, and We gave them refuge on a lofty ground having meadows and springs.” Jerusalem, Egypt, Palestine or Damascus, which are the names suggested do not answer the description.

    The following hadith, quoted in Jesus in India, which in light of the Qur’an and historical research are quite noteworthy:

    Kanz-ul-Ummal (Volume 2) which is a comprehensive Book of Hadith, has on page 34 a Hadith from Abu Hurairah: God directed Jesus (on whom be peace) ‘O Jesus! Move from one place to another’ — go from one country to another lest thou shouldst be recognized and persecuted. 

    Again, in the same Book, on the report of Jabar, there is the Hadith Jesus always used to travel; he went from one country to another, and at nightfall wherever he was he used to eat the vegetation of the jungle and to drink pure water. 

    Again, in the same book, there is a report from Abdullah bin Umar: The Holy Prophet declared that the most favoured in the sight of God are the poor. Asked, what was meant by the poor? Were they the people who, like Jesus the Messiah, fled from their country with their faith?

  11. Just few years before mirza ghulam syed ahmad khan wrote about jesus been dead (frm that I think mirza picked the idea)

    but thing is all major Tafsir, Sahih hadith All top scholors agree with the idea that jesus didnt DIE

  12. I must say that I was not aware of the controversy surrounding this verse. 

    I have learned that the termination of prophethood was a unanimously accepted ideology within Islam, it is comparable to the status of Jesus.  The AMI claim that the HP and his sahaba believed that prophethood had not ended, M. ali argued that it was a unanimous opinion of the classical scholars that prophethood had terminated.  

    I am using the same reasoning with the status of Jesus.   So basically, HMGA is claiming that all the classic scholars and mujadids of Islam were wrong on this point.  That would be hard to prove.   HMGA also wrote the same about jihad.  This appears to be a re-occuring theme of HMGA.  Suprisingly he agreed with the current ulama on the birth of Jesus.   

    My question is, when did the muslims start to believe that Jesus was alive.   Who can this belief be traced to?  Where is the smoking gun?
    Didnt Ibn Abbas do a tafsir?  Wasnt Ibn abbas a sahaba of the HP?  
    So allah decided to not give the classical scholars the insight to see this error of theirs.  This is a strange predicament.   



  13. June 13th, 2009 at 8:47 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    I have explained before that the issue of whether Jesus is alive or not was one of the many purely academic issues. Scholars wrote about it in a cursory way. They had no need to consider it in depth. The Quran also says that the prophet Idris (Enoch of the Bible) was raised (rafa`) by Allah (19:57). If all Muslims in the world believe that Enoch is still alive in heaven, it does not reflect adversely on Islam because no one is exploiting that belief.

    The issue of the belief in Jesus being alive became of importance when Christian missionaries started exploiting this belief.

    The belief that Jesus is alive was spread due to: (1) Muslims trying to reconcile Gospel accounts of Jesus’ life with the Quran, and (2) the lack of understanding of the hadith prophecies that Jesus will come among Muslims. Prophecies are often not correctly understood before their fulfilment (this is a whole subject of study in itself).

    Our beliefs both in the death of Jesus and the finality of prophethood
    are based primarily on the Quran and Hadith. The question of what Muslims believe takes a secondary place.

    But there is question for you in your question. Termination of prophethood was unanimously believed, and according to you everyone believed that Jesus had not died. But these beliefs conflict with one another! If prophethood ended with the Holy Prophet, how can a previous prophet be still alive (and moreover, will return)? Many Muslims have tried to explain this. It was Hazrat Mirza sahib who brilliantly resolved this contradiction.

  14. June 13th, 2009 at 10:05 pm
    From Omar Raja:

    Bashir says: So allah decided to not give the classical scholars the insight to see this error of theirs.  This is a strange predicament. 

    This is some flawed ‘reasoning’.

    So Bashir, are you going to readily accept any belief blindly based upon whatever your ‘doctors of law’ have stated, taking into no consideration the teachings of the Qur’an and Holy Prophet Muhammad?

    “They take their doctors of law and their monks for lords besides Allah, and (also) the Messiah, son of Mary” (Qur’an 9:31).

    Is it also your belief then that there are numerous passages within the Holy Qur’an that have been abrogated/replaced by other verses in the Qur’an, since you give such high authority to these ‘classical scholars’? Do you believe the Qur’an contradicts itself?

  15. For Omar Raja:  Do I think that Koran has passages that are abrogated?  YES, I think so.  I have to agree with the consensus of opinion of the early muslim scholars.  Whether its prophethood, the status of jesus, the HP’s flight to heaven, I think the early muslim scholars’ opinion is very good. 

    Before Suyuti, some muslims scholars/mujadids had listed 200+ verse as being abrogated,  Suyuti listed only 20 verses.   

    Tabari wrote:  
     “God alters what was once declared lawful into unlawful, or vice-versa; what was legally unregulated into prohibited and vice-versa. But such changes can occur only in verses conveying commands, positive and negative. Verses cast in the indicative and conveying narrative statements, can be affected by neither nāsikh [abrogating material] nor mansūkh [abrogated material].”  Burton, BSOAS 48, p. 458

    The abrogation theory is very complex, I must admit that I havent studied it well enough yet. 

    ZA:  I disagree with your dismissals.  I think that all topics were taken into consideration equally.  The koran doesnt mention the return of Jesus, yet we have countless hadith that mention this event.  I think these hadith are literal and not symbolic.  

    1.   I will ask my question again, WHO INVENTED THE INCORRECT THEORIES ABOUT THE STATUS OF JESUS?????????

    2.  Usually when ideas are invented inside a religion, there is a group that splits(see aaiil vs. AMI 1914).  Islam did not split on the idea that Jesus was alive.  This is a doctrinal issue.  How is it possible that one person invented this idea and forced all muslims to adhere to it.  Then, how could this belief have spread from Africa to Spain to India and even to Indonesia??  Thats hard to prove.  That is exactly what the ahmadis infer.    

    3..  As far as what I know, when Bukhari wrote his hadith book, all muslims believed that Jesus was alive.  The tafsirs that I havent read are by Tabari and Ibn Abbas. 

    4.  Can ahmadis at least give a time-span as to when this belief was invented? 

  16. June 14th, 2009 at 9:19 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    The obvious difficulty with Bashir’s standpoint on abrogation is that since the number of verses said to be abrogated has been decreasing with time (200+ before Suyuti, 20 for Suyuti, 5 for Shah Waliullah, zero for Maulana Maudoodi), it means that the earliest figure must be the most correct as it is nearest to the time of early Islam!

    Bashir, what right did Suyuti have to declare the scholars before him as being wrong in regarding hundreds of verses as abrogated? What right did Shah Waliullah have to declare that Suyuti was wrong about several verses being abrogated, and that only 5 were abrogated? What right did Maudoodi have to say that no verse was abrogated, thus implying that hundreds of scholars before him stretching back several centuries were wrong?

    The idea of Jesus being alive already existed among Christians before Islam, except that they believed that he died on the cross and then came to life again before being taken up to heaven. It entered Islam largely through the huge numbers of Christians who became Muslims.

    If at the time of Bukhari all Muslims believed Jesus was alive, why did Bukhari record, under sura 5, the saying of Ibn Abbas that mutawaffi-ka means mumitu-ka, i.e. that the word used about Jesus in 3:55 and 5:117 means maut or ‘death’? You won’t find this in Muhsin Khan’s translation of Bukhari because his translation excludes Bukhari’s chapter headings, in which he has quoted Ibn Abbas’s statement.

  17. In regards to the question when did Muslims start believing Jesus is still alive in heaven after physical ascension, it actually started very early. Writing only some 50 years after the death of Holy Prophet, St John of Damascus, a Christian saint, wrote a tract against Islam entitled ‘Heresy of Ishmaelites’. In it he mentioned the Muslim belief that Jews tried to crucify Jesus, but Allah prevented his death and raised him to heaven, with the enemies crucifiying only his shadow.

  18. For my brother in research, T. Ijaz:

    Bro, I think you shot yourself in the foot with this info.  I havent fully read this manifesto as of yet, I am skimming it on my lunch, but this proves that muslims believed Jesus to be alive since like forever. 

    Of course this paper needs to checked for authenticity.  Before that I can’t really issue an offical judgement on it. 

    I think that I have proved that I am nuetral on every topic, whether its prophethood, jihad or whatever.  I try to stay neutral and think in terms of neutrality. 

    For ZA: 
    I have to follow my format.  I can’t disregard what the early scholars of Islam had to say.  I think that they had every right to interpret Islam as Allah was guiding them to do so.  Allah put all of these ideas into their heart and mind.  That’s what muslims believe is it not? 

    I can’t condemn the early scholars, I think they interpreted Islam as it was.  I dont think they changed with the times.  I think the 19th century religions RE-INTERPRET concepts to fit the times that they are in.   I am totally against this.  Religion should be black and white, religion is not a complicated matter. 

    In the 19th century, muslims were forced to re-interpret Islam.  I am afraid HMGA claimed that all of the muslim scholars were wrong on alot of different things, I was no aware of this prior to 2009. 

    Where is Bukhari’s tafsir on the Koran, I would love to read it and view his thoughts on a variety of important matters.   I think that Bukhari totally belived that Jessu was alive, if I could find the data I could support this notion of mine. 

    If bukhari believed that Jesus was dead, wouldnt HMGA have mentioned this, what about Noorudin, wouldnt he have mentioned this as an argument?  How could muslims have missed this? 

  19. Imam Abu Hanifa—-699 — 765

    Saint John of Damascus —676–749

    Saint John’s full tract on Islam:

    Is it safe to say that Imam Abu Hanifa believed that Jesus was alive?  I think so!!!! 

    Was it the first 50 years where islam became corrupt with the idea that Jesus was alive as opposed to dead?  Are there any other artifacts that we can connect to this era? 

    I think Abu Hanifa practiced Islam in its purest form.  If Islam was tampered with within the first 50 years of inception, then, in that case, everything is up for debate, every topic within Islam needs to re-interpreted. 

    I think that M. ali critisized HMBMA for this type of thinking.  M. ali even wrote that if HMBMA continued with his ideas, he felt that HMBMA might one day assert that Islam never happened, or something to that effect, of course this was in terms of prophethood. 

  20. June 16th, 2009 at 12:34 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    In response to Bashir’s question: “If bukhari believed that Jesus was dead, wouldnt HMGA have mentioned this,…” please note that a famous philosopher said: “I think, therefore I am”. Bashir’s philosophy is: “I have not seen it, therefore it is not.”

    Of course Hazrat Mirza sahib mentioned it, and mentioned it repeatedly. I also told you that the online Bukhari translation excludes Bukhari’s chapter headings. These can be found, for example, at the following source.

    See this link to the relevant section in the Arabic text of Bukhari at Wikisource.

    And here is the image of the lines in question from the above link. I have drawn a red line under the relevant words: Ibn Abbas said: mutawaffi-ka means mumitu-ka. (In the link to the Arabic section above, do a find for “4347” to reach these lines.)

    Whenever Bashir is asked any question about his views, he just ignores the question, sidelines it, and jumps to ask some other question. The following are only examples of questions he has ignored:

    1. He says later Muslims cannot correct earlier Muslims, because the earlier are closer to the time of Islam. I asked: Was then Suyuti justified in saying that scholars before him were wrong to consider 200+ verses as abrogated, because only 20 are? Was later on Shah Waliullah justified in saying that scholars before him were wrong to consider 20 verses as abrogated, because only 5 are?

    2. I asked if all Muslims before Hazrat Mirza sahib’s time believed that Jesus was alive, why have many Islamic scholars after Hazrat Mirza sahib’s time also rejected that belief and have written that he died, for example Muhammad Asad in his famous, highly-regarded commentary The Message of the Quran?

    3. Bashir said that the earliest Muslims were unanimous on two points: that Jesus was alive, and that prophethood ended with the Holy Prophet Muhammad? I asked, don’t these beliefs contradict each other? If Jesus is alive, meaning of course that he will return, how can the Holy Prophet Muhammad be the last prophet?

    Bashir failed to answer these questions, perhaps for fear of offending other Muslims, while Mirza Ghulam Ahmad is much easier to kick around.

  21. ZA:  Here is the question that will explain my position.  I will make the answer multiple choice.

    1.  According to HMGA when did the muslim nation begin to believe that Jesus was alive as opposed to dead.

    A—1st century Islam “Abu Hanifa era”
    B—-2nd century Islam “Ibn Ishaq, Ibn Hisham, al wakidi era”
    C—-3rd century Islam  “Tabari, Muslim and Bukhari era”

    FYI:  you didnt comment on the paper by Saint John of Damascus. 

    And sorry, I cant read arabic very well.  I grew up reading the big arabic letters in many of the easy to read Korans that the ahmadis pass out, growing up in the USA arabic is hard to learn.  I was looking for an english translation with a possible arabic transliteration, or easier to read arabic.   

    What were Bukhari’s personal opinions on the status of jesus?  I have never read a detailed article on this topic.  I have read many tafsir’s from and this shows that all muslims, shia or sunni, they all believed Jesus to be alive, somehow.  

    I think more research should be done, therefore more research should be done. 

  22. I was skimming another one of M. ali’s books last night.  M. ali found one Scholar who believed that Jesus was dead.  M. ali did not list Bukhari.  M. ali was great at research, I have read more of M. ali’s books than any other muslim.  If M. ali didnt find it, then maybe it doesnt exist. 

    M. Ali writes:

    “Imam Malik believed in Jesus. absolute death. It is mentioned in

    Majma. al-Bihar under the word hakam:
    He (Jesus) will descend as a judge; that is to say, hewill judge according to this

    Shar.iah (Law) (and) he will not be a prophet. The majority think that Jesus did not die but (Imam) Malik said that he died…”

    Obviously Imam Malik must have written that Jesus was dead and would be raised from the dead and return to this world as a non-prophet.  I had eluded to this earlier.  There are also other theories.  HMGA’s theory is unique. 

    If the HP was the exception to the rule in terms of marriages, why is Jesus not the exception to the rules on life or death, or returning from the dead?   
    I havent read the entire book, but I dont think that M. ali commented on the age of Jesus at death. 

  23. June 16th, 2009 at 2:34 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    In reply to Bashir’s latest that “M. ali did not list Bukhari”. Look again at the link given by yourself, at page 161 of the printed book (page 199 of the pdf file), he writes:

    “Here it should suffice to say that in Al-Bukhari it is reported from Hazrat Ibn Abbas that mutawaffi-ka means mumitu-ka (I will cause you to die).”

  24. June 16th, 2009 at 3:08 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    Bashir writes: “FYI:  you didnt comment on the paper by Saint John of Damascus. ”

    It could be because I was terrified of your powerful argument, or it could be because I was replying first to your other comments. Let us see which.

    Have you actually read the link you gave above?

    St John is so ignorant of the very basics of Islam that he thinks the various suras of the Quran are separate books:

    “As has been related, this Mohammed wrote many ridiculous books, to each one of which he set a title. For example, there is the book On Woman, …”

    And in listing some of these “books” he mentions the following:

    “Then there is the book of The Camel of God.”

    Is there such a sura in the Quran? Now read the story under it.

     “However, she [the camel] had an offspring, a little camel, which, he [Holy Prophet] says, when the mother had been done away with, called upon God and God took it to Himself.”

    Is any part of that story in the Quran? Is it believed by Muslims that a camel was taken up to God and entered paradise, and that this is in the Quran, as St John alleges Muslims believe?

    Now here is another anti-Islamic Christian website with the translation of St John’s article. Just read the introductory note by the website. The note says, approvingly, that from St John’s article it appears that Islam had not yet acquired this name! The note says:

    “He was entirely familiar with Islam (a name it did not yet possess, apparently), … Thus, during his lifetime, St John did not consider Islam to yet be a separate religion, but rather a Christian heresy.”

    So St John did not even know that the religion he was talking about was a separate religion called Islam! He thought it was a heretical Christian sect.

    If, according to you, St John is correctly representing Muslim beliefs, then it means Islam did not even have the name Islam when St John was writing some 70 years after the Holy Prophet’s death. It means that there was no such book called the Quran, but separate books, one of which (the book of the camel) does not now form part of the Quran.

    What St John says about the Muslim belief about Jesus is:

    “And he [Prophet Muhammad] says that the Jews wanted to crucify Him in violation of the law, and that they seized His shadow and crucified this. But the Christ Himself was not crucified, he says, nor did He die, for God out of His love for Him took Him to Himself into heaven.”

    Which Muslims believed that a shadow was crucified?

    If St John’s article shows that Muslims believed Jesus to be alive in heaven, it also shows that Muslims believed that a camel was similarly taken up to heaven, and that there was a sura in the Quran giving full details of the story.

  25. June 20th, 2009 at 1:28 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    Regarding that article by St John of Damascus mentioned above,  it has been suggested that it reflects what the early Muslims believed, a few decades after the Holy Prophet’s death. In it he writes that the Prophet Muhammad wrote in his revelations that Mary was the “sister of Moses and Aaron”. That Mary was the sister of “Moses” is nowhere stated in the Quran or any other Islamic source. She is referred to as “sister of Aaron” in the Quran, but no Muslim has ever taken it to mean that she was physically related to “Moses and Aaron” as sister. Muslims have either taken the view that “sister” here is not meant physically but spiritually, or that she could have had a brother whose name was Aaron. But no one considers her the real sister of Aaron and Moses.

    The following is stated in Tafsir Ibn Kathir:

    “(O sister of Harun!) This means, “O one resembling Harun (Aaron) in worship.”

    “(O sister of Harun!) referring to the brother of Musa, because she was of his descendants. This is similar to the saying, `O brother of Tamim,’ to one who is from the Tamimi tribe, and `O brother of Mudar,’ to one who is from the Mudari tribe. It has also been said that she was related to a righteous man among them whose name was Harun and she was comparable to him in her abstinence and worship.”

    It is obvious that St John’s knowledge of Islam was based on what he heard from Christian opponents of Islam, who themselves were ignorant. Just because he has written that Muslims believe that Jesus was taken up to God and (absurdly) his “shadow” crucified in his place, does not mean that Muslims at that time believed this.

  26. My review of the article by St. John

    I cant fathom how this paper by St. John is total rubbish. It is actually suprisingly accurate. I think that maybe St. John had a copy of the Koran.

    Now, he quotes Chapter 112 from the Koran when he writes:

    He says that there is one God, creator of all things, who has neither been begotten nor has begotten.”
    I cant say that he totally mis-quoted the Koran. Then he continues to write that Muhammad clarified the position of jesus as a prophet and not as a son of god, which is also true. So far that is 2 factual statements. He continues to write that Muhammad in his Koran explains that Jesus escaped crucifiction, Jesus was not killed, but he ascended to heaven. Isnt this what the muslims believe to this day?
    Later in this paper St. John writes about witnesses, and how the Koran makes it obligatory to have witnesses during transactions etc etc. Again, these are direct quotes from the Koran. Now, I dont know if this guy read the Koran or not, but it seems like he knew alot about Islam. Maybe he had a copy of the Koran and maybe he heard these stories from traders.
    He continues to elude to Islamic beliefs. He talks about how muslims are strongly against associating partners with allah. This phraseology is a theme of the Koran. This is Allah’s displeasure with christianity. How could St. St. John know of this belief if he was out of touch with islamic thought?
    He writes about the stone in the Kaaba, he writes about the connection of Abraham with Islam, he writes about Sura Nisa, he writes about the situation with Muhammad, Zaid and zainab.
    Remarkably his story of Zainab, Zaib and Muhammad almost totally matches that of Tabari’s account.
    I am lost on his story of the camel of God, I dont think this story exists in islamic thought. It deserves to be researched.
    In summary, the ahmadis(q and L) must reject this historical artifact because it shows that even early on Muslims believed that Jesus escaped death and ascended. Now if this artifact proved the opposite, I am sure that all ahmadis would jump all over it and use it as a strong argument for the death of jesus.

  27. July 10th, 2009 at 7:10 am
    From Zahid Aziz:

    St John doesn’t know what the Quran is. He doesn’t even mention its name. He thinks it is separate books. And as a Christian website has noted, he doesn’t mention the name ‘Islam’ but thinks this religion is a Christian heretical sect. A Christian website that I mentioned above says that this proves that Islam did not have name Islam at the time St John was writing. Is it true then that Islam did not have the name Islam even 80 years afetr the Holy Prophet’s death?

    St John says that Muslims believe that the “shadow” of Jesus was crucified in his place. Which Muslims believe this?

    He writes in the camel story that Muslims believe that a camel was taken up alive to heaven (i.e.  just like Jesus). Which Muslims believe this?

    It is clear that St John’s knowledge of Islam was based on heresay from other Christians. They already believed that Jesus was alive in heaven, even before Islam. They read their own belief into the Quran.

  28. I wish there were other people who could provide input on these matters.  Sometimes I feel that this forum only consists of me and ZA.  Most of the time me and ZA are the only ones who discuss topics together. 

    We will never know as to how St. John got his information.  Here are some questions that need to be answered.

    1.  Was there a publishing company that published Koran’s in that era?

    2.  If so, how many did they publish per year?

    3.  How many people had the Koran in there household in those days?  What was the literacy rate in the middle east?  

    4.  St. John just gave his impression of Islam.  As I mentioned before it is surprisingly accurate.  There are some inconsistencies, but you cant totally disregard his statements. 

    5.  When he writes “ghost”, I get the impression that St. John was eluding to the fact that Jesus escaped crucifiction, and someone other than Jesus was crucified in his place(see suyuti’s koran).  All muslims believe this, do they not?  If muslims believed that Jesus lived until age 120, I’m sure that St. John would have mentioned such an extreme belief.  


  29. July 11th, 2009 at 7:34 am
    From Zahid Aziz:

    It is fairly obvious why no one else is contributing. They (rightly) think all these are hair-splitting discussions. I am bound to respond as I am the blog creator.

    No belief in this world, however sound it may be, can be proved if we use the criteria that if a belief is true then one should not be able to find any argument whatsoever against it. But there are arguments against every belief, whether it is belief in God, or belief in Islam (even belief that Apollo 11 landed on the moon). The question is, which arguments are stronger.

    We have never said that Muslims believed that Jesus died at the age of 120 years. It is quite a different matter to say that a hadith exists to this effect, whose significance was not realised.

    Regarding Christain ignorance about and misrepresentation of Muslim beliefs, there is a whole history of it which some researchers have studied. Christians, having read in the gospels that the holy spirit came to Jesus in the form of a dove, jumped to the conclusion that Muslims believe the same about Prophet Muhammad. Thus they said that the Prophet Muhammad used to attract a dove to come and peck on some bird feed that he kept in his ear, and pretended that the dove was speaking to him words of revelation. Do Muslims believe that a dove brought revelation?

    I remember an incident in about 1971 when a British writer, Auberon Waugh (son of the distinguished novelist Evelyn Waugh), wrote in a newspaper column in The Times that Muslim men in Morocco wear loose trousers because they believe that Allah will one day be born to a man; hence to facilitate the delivery of Allah when He is given birth to they wear loose trousers. This writer was obviously most highly educated in other ways. Is this a Muslim belief and practice?

  30. ZA, thanks for the input.  I agree with what you wrote. 

    Sikhism was created because of what some people thought were the teachings of Baba Nanak,  Christianity is ver similiar in the respect.  Griswold wrote that HMGA considered himself to be IA, and he even quoted ROR 1902, I think you proved him wrong, as both of us looked up the reference given by Griswold and it didnt really exist.

    My only question is this: if St. john had wrote that muslims believed that Jesus was dead, then would you attempt to dis-credit it?  Or would you use the same rules as stated above?

  31. July 13th, 2009 at 7:27 pm
    From Zahid Aziz:

    The question you pose is hypothetical. Only if there was an actual case, would I be able to say what I would do, in the light of facts about that case. I don’t recall that we have quoted any non-Muslim, particularly anti-Islamic source in our support.

  32. May 27th, 2016 at 5:30 am
    From Reza Ghafoerkhan:

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