Hard Questions

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Allah: The God of The Quran and The Bible

with 67 comments


In response to an ever increasing number of Western Christian bloggers who are only too eager to blaspheme the beautiful name of the Creator, I have written a short article on the meaning and history of the word ‘Allah’.

The thrust of the argument is that Allah is most certainly the name of God used by Jesus and his disciples, It is the name of God in the oldest Gospel (written in Aramaic). Allah is most probably the name of God known to Moses and the prophets.

Arabic speaking Christians and Jews have no name for God other than Allah. Bearing in mind that Arab were introduced to Christianity BEFORE Greeks and Romans, it is astonishing that some people still want to blaspheme the name of The Creator, merely to erect a defensive wall against reason.

in summary, whether you like it or not, Allah is a more authentic name of the Creator than than the generic word ‘ God ‘.

TRY This:

  1. Visit The Peshitta New Testament in Aramaic/English Interlinear format website, The URL is http://www.peshitta.org/
  2. Goto Tools> Lexicon>
  3. Enter the word God in the search field, to find the corresponding Aramaic word

Furthermore, the name ‘ Allah ‘ has no gender, no plural form and has never been used for any entity other The Creator. All these attributes can hardly be equaled by the Greek word ‘ God ‘ which none of the prophets uttered.

I have dedicated a page on this blog for the article, which includes a link to an excellent article by Rick Brown, a must read for anyone seeking objectivity.

Allah is the God of Abraham, the God of the Bible, The God of the Quran, and the Only True God.

The Catholic Encyclopedia was absolutely correct when it said:

The notion of Allah in Arabic theology is substantially the same as that of God among the Jews, and also among the Christians, with the exception of the Trinity, which is positively excluded in the Koran, cxii: “Say God, is one God, the eternal God, he begetteth not, neither is he begotten and there is not any one like unto him.”

Allah said in The Quran, chapter 3:

[Quran: 3:2] Allah! There is no god save Him, the Alive, the Eternal.
[ 3:3] He hath revealed unto thee the Scripture with truth, confirming that which was (revealed) before it, even as He revealed the Torah and the Gospel.

Related posts:

Written by Rasheed Gadir

June 13, 2008 at 4:59 pm

67 Responses

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  1. Rasheed,

    I understand what you are attempting to say, but your argument must establish more than simply that the names are the same. God/Allah is a generic term. Would you not agree that not every Jesus is the Jesus known to Christianity? A name does not ensure that we are speaking of the same person, especially when the name is commonly used.

    Your argument is laid out as:

    If man A is named Rasheed
    And man B is named Rasheed
    Then man A and man B are Rasheed the author of this blog

    To make this a coherent argument you must establish that the character of Yahweh and Allah are the same. You are only serving to confirm your presuppositions, while having no effect on educated readers who do not hold the same notions.

    This doesn’t work.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 9, 2008 at 6:20 am

  2. Andrew

    I don’t think you understand what I am trying to say,

    First, the name ‘Allah’ is not a generic name, it never was. Where did you get the notion that Allah is a generic name from?

    When an Arabic speaker – regardless of religion – says Allah, he is referring only to the Eternal Creator, The God of Abraham, and therefore your claim that ‘Allah’ is a generic word is plainly mistaken and wrong.

    It follows that, the analogies about ‘a person named A’, Rasheed, etc, are meaningless and unreasonable.

    The arguments contained in the post and the linked references are much more than a name coincidence.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 9, 2008 at 12:47 pm

  3. Rasheed,

    I understand exactly what you’re trying to say and why you’re trying to say it. It’s just not a statement backed by a logical argument. There are rules of logic that must be applied and this fails the test.

    Allah is the standard Arabic word for God. Standard and generic are synonyms. Therefore, Allah is the gerneric word for God. It may describe a creator god, but we can have different gods we call the eternal creator.

    Using the rules contained at the following website see if you can resubmit your argument and make it in a logical statement.

    http://www.philosophyclass.com/logic.htm

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 10, 2008 at 12:38 am

  4. Andrew
    I am quite happy to examine my and your statements using the laws of logic:

    1: You start your argument by saying:

    p= Allah is the standard Arabic word for God:

    This is a True statement, and is exactly my point of the original article. God (with Capital letter G, is understood to be The True God of Abraham) for difference between the words “god” and “God” see this dictionary.com entry

    2: Your next statement: “Standard and generic are synonyms“, is completely FALSE:

    Oxford English Dictionary:
    generic: adjective 1 referring to a class or group; not specific. 2 (of goods) having no brand name.

    This is completely different from “Standard” which means well defined: the synonyms of “standard” are:
    (canonical, classic, consuetudinary, conventional, de rigueur, emblematic, ethical, exemplary, orthodox, prime, proper, recognized, sanctioned, traditional, typical, uniform) (see Thesaurus.com)

    You
    can also follow these 2 links for the words “generic” and “standard” from dictionary.com

    3: From 1 & 2 above, it follows that your substitution of the word “generic” for “standard” is FALSE, and so is your statement q= FALSE where:

    q= therefore Allah is the generic word for God

    Your statements show that not only you do not understand the Arabic usage of the word ‘Allah’, but you also misused the English language in an attempt to make a preconceived illusion sounds credible.

    For your information, Allah does not mean ‘god’ (with small g) and has NEVER been used to mean a generic god.

    We do not have this problem which exists in the English language, of having to distinguish between the True God of Abraham and other false gods by using small and capital letters. We use a different word for false ‘gods’, which is ‘ilah’

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 10, 2008 at 2:05 am

  5. Rasheed,

    You did not examine your own statements. As I understand it you’re saying:

    If God A is called Allah by Christians & Jews
    And God B is called Allah by Muslims
    Then God A & God B are the same God

    That conclusion doesn’t necessarily follow from the premises. Where it actually leads is that the two are likely different and one is false, unless you can demonstrate that they are the same by their character and person.

    Consider it this way- if I make the statement that I know Rasheed, and then proceed to state that Rasheed has 14 children by 5 different wives, and someone else comes along and accurately says they know Rasheed and he has only 3 children by only 1 wife (hypothetically)- both of us can’t be right. I have obviously said something false (and slanderous) about Rasheed and don’t really know the real Rasheed. I may in fact be familiar with another Rasheed about whom this is the case.

    This is in essence what we have to qualify. It is not that Allah can’t be the Eternal Creator. It is that Allah cannot be Yahweh, because we have major discrepancies between their character. In the end one of us is worshiping a false god, and convincing ourselves he is the real god doesn’t make it true.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 10, 2008 at 8:45 pm

  6. “Allah” is not just like any name out there. While there might be many humans whose name is “Rasheed” or “Abdo”, there is only one god whose name is “Allah”. So, if different groups of people all say that the name of their god is “Allah”, there is no point in trying to argue that “Allah” of one of these groups is not the same “Allah” of the others.

    I think what Rasheed is trying to say is really simple: what is the one name by which God Almighty has been, and should remain to be, known by all of His believers? When we meet someone for the first time we “ask them” about their name; we don’t just “give them” a name from ourselves.

    So what did God call himself? Just what did He say His name is?

    The answer to this question in Islam is: “Allah”.

    What is the answer in Christianity, and what is the answer in Judaism?

    How would an Arab Christian or an Arab Jew answer this question?

    عبده

    June 11, 2008 at 7:40 am

  7. Andrew

    You are putting words in my mouth. It is you who is proposing that there are two different gods with the name Allah.
    Before the rise of Islam, the children of Abraham (Arabs, Jews and Jewish Christians) new the True god by the name “Allah”, and I have demonstrated this in my post. They did not refer to two different gods as you are claiming.
    The onus is on you to prove otherwise!

    You have tried to prove your point using false linguistic substitution, and I have shown you that your statements there were entirely and conclusively FALSE. Now you are coming with a new argument when you said:

    It is that Allah cannot be Yahweh, because we have major discrepancies between their characters

    Again, The onus is on you to prove this statement. I am not saying that there are two gods “Allah” and “Yahweh”, I am not saying that their characters are different, you are saying those things, and you need to prove them not me.

    In fact I do not even use the term “character” when referring to Almighty, I prefer the word “Attributes”

    Muslims, Jews and early Jewish-Christians (who spoke Aramaic) agreed that there is one true god, whose name is Allah, who created the world and sent the messengers. His attributes are generally the same, with the exception of the polytheistic notion of the Trinity introduced in Christianity.

    That the attributes of Allah are the same in Islam, Judaism and early Christianity, is evidenced by the quotation of the Catholic Encyclopedia, and other linked documents in my post, which you also need to refute, since you do not seem to agree with.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 11, 2008 at 12:46 pm

  8. Rasheed,

    It was not my intention to put words in your mouth. I asked you to state your position in a logical form and you did not. It is not a proposal that there are two Gods named Allah, but that there is a god and a God named Allah. I have made a logical argument and all you want to deal with is the semantical argument.

    Whether we use the word “character” or “Attribute” when applied to Allah and Yahweh, we must follow the law of non-contradiction. If something in their attributes is contradictory then your final conclusion is false.

    The problem we run into here is one that Christians have with the person of Jesus. Mormons for instance have a vastly different Christology than orthodox Christians. We don’t consider their Jesus to be the biblical Jesus because the two don’t match up.

    I simply asked for a logic statement and am still waiting for your statement. When you give your statement we can examine all the other issues in question (i.e. the Catholic Encyclopedia quote).

    Until then,

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 11, 2008 at 5:18 pm

  9. Andrew

    Now you are saying you do not know what is my statement in logic form. A short time ago you were saying not only that you understood what I was saying, but you also knew why I said it !!

    Let me remind you of some of the things you wrote:
    You said:

    I understand exactly what you’re trying to say and why you’re trying to say it. It’s just not a statement backed by a logical argument. There are rules of logic that must be applied and this fails the test.

    Now you are saying:

    I simply asked for a logic statement and am still waiting for your statement. When you give your statement we can examine all the other issues in question (i.e. the Catholic Encyclopedia quote).

    If you are still waiting for a statement, why did you jump to disagree?

    In in case, my own statement is so obvious, and is not very hard to find either, it is right there in the TITLE of the post:

    Allah is the God of The Quran and The Bible

    You have had several unsuccessful attempts trying to disprove it, but I think you failed so far. I am waiting now for your next attempt.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 11, 2008 at 5:39 pm

  10. Rasheed,

    You disagreed with my version of your logic statement. I was giving you a chance to restate it and not put words in your mouth. Can you state it for me?

    “Allah is the God of The Quran and The Bible” is not in the form of a logic statement.

    Thanks,

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 11, 2008 at 5:56 pm

  11. Andrew

    I wrote a statement that can either be True or False, so it is in logic format.

    I f you can not prove that the statement is False, I do not have to rewrite it in any other way. You just have to either accept it, or prove it to be False.
    You can also choose to ignore it of course!

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 11, 2008 at 6:08 pm

  12. Rasheed,

    Your statement is not a logic statement. A logic statement is structured as:

    If A
    And B
    Then C

    In order to properly analyze your statement it should be in this format. Why will you not write it in logic form?

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 11, 2008 at 6:14 pm

  13. Andrew:

    The format you mentioned is just one subset of logical statements, namely “conditional statements”.

    My statement is about what I regard as a historical truth, and therefore need not be expressed in conditional format. It is simply a statement of a historical fact. with no ifs and buts, If you disagree with what I regard as a historical truth, then YOU have to show us why you disagree.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 11, 2008 at 6:20 pm

  14. Rasheed,

    There are conditions that must be met to make your statement historical truth. It is not historical truth on judgment alone. The conditional format allows us to break down your statement, analyze the conditions, and find if they are true or false. I am more than willing to show you why I disagree if you will give me a conditional statement. I tried to earlier and you disagreed. I am giving you an opportunity to set the stage of what you are saying.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 11, 2008 at 6:38 pm

  15. Andrew

    As I said before, the onus is on you to show that the statement is not a historical truth.

    If you think there are conditions that are needed which are not met, then please tell us those conditions, why they are needed and how are they not met.

    You are making a very odd request my friend, that I re-write my piece to suite your prejudices. Not only that, but you want to dictate a specific format too.

    My post is still on line, and you are invited to comment on it as it is, not re-write it in your own words, or distort it.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 11, 2008 at 6:53 pm

  16. Rasheed,

    I am not asking you re-write your post. I am asking that you state your argument made in the post as a conditional logic statement so I can properly evaluate it free from distortion.

    You accused me of putting words in your mouth. I’m asking you to clear things up so I don’t.

    A logic statement can hardly be considered my “prejudices”. That is a ridiculous statement.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 11, 2008 at 7:52 pm

  17. I re-read Rasheed’s post and again found it to be straightforward. The argument does not require any ifs or buts.. no need for re-stating in conditional form. What Rasheed says is this: “Allah” is the God of The Quran and The Bible and the name “Allah” is God’s name known to Jesus, Moses, and all God’s believers.

    Rasheed argues that Allah is the God of The Bible both in name and in character/attributes, and he supports his argument by citing the Catholic Encyclopedia which states that when the concept of the trinity is removed, the notion (character/attributes) of Allah is the same as that of God in Judaism and Christianity.

    I don’t see why the above argument would be hard to understand, or why it would need restating in a conditional logic in order for it to be discussed?

    I believe the way to negate this argument is to try and show that a) the name of the God of the Bible is NOT or has never been “Allah”, and b) the character/attributes of the God of the Bible are very different from those of Allah.

    -Abdo

    عبده

    June 12, 2008 at 6:00 am

  18. Abdo,

    Rasheed has made a semantical argument. A conditional logic argument would make it much easier to dissect and be understandable to all parties.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 12, 2008 at 2:11 pm

  19. Andrew

    I have followed your objections to Rasheed’s post over the past few days, and your claim that the argument is not put in a “logical format”.

    Despite my conviction, and I believe it would also by the conviction of anyone who has elementary understanding of the science of logic- that the argument in the post is logically sound, and it includes all the necessary elements of “logical proof”, nevertheless, I will explain the arguments in details:

    Logical Elements of The Post:

    1- The post does indeed expresses a “Logical Statement” as its central issue. The accepted definition of a “Logical Statement” is: “Any statement that can either be TRUE or FALSE”.

    In this case, the Logical Statement in question, as has been explained by Rasheed in his comment, is the title of the Post, namely: Allah is The God of The Quran and The Bible“, and within the post itself, the “Central Argument” has been further expanded, since:

    Rasheed claimed that:

    [“The god that Muslims AND ‘Arab Christian and Jews to this day’ AND ‘Christian and Jews who lived at Jesus time and spoke Aramaic,’
    believed to be
    (“The god of Abraham and Isaac”, AND ” He is The Only True god”),
    That the name of this god
    -who is accurately determined by the preceding statement –
    is ALLAH.].

    This is central argument of the post, was clearly stated in the title of the post, and detailed within it,

    Now this statement can Accepted by one person and Rejected by another, It is therefore a “Logical Statement” according to the scientific definition of a “Logical Statement”,

    You, therefore, have no right to demand that a person changes the composition of a “logical statement” put forward by him, You can either:

    a: Accept it according to the evidence and deduction offered by him
    b: Reject it according to evidence that YOU produce
    c: Ignore it, as Rasheed has offered you

    Yet, most striking, is your request that the Statement be re-written in the “conditional format” suggested by yourself (IF A AND B THEN C), since this format, unfortunately, is simply another “LOGICAL COMPOSITION” that needs to be PROVEN or REJECTED, in EXACTLY the same way the “Logical Statement” put forward in the post and its title by Rasheed.

    This format you requested which is called a “CONDITIONAL STATEMENT” is just one amongst MANY other “LOGICAL COMPOSITIONS” such as (Conjunction Statement: A AND B) , (Disjunction Statement: A OR B), (Implication Statement: A IMPLIES B), (Negation Statement: NOT A).
    ALL these “Logical Compositions” do not, by themselves, imply the TRUTH or FALSEHOOD of any statement, they are simply Statements that can either be TRUE or FALSE, in EXACTLY the same way the statement put by Rasheed in the title of his post and then proceeded to PROVE it within the post. This PROOF, will be the subject of the remainder of my comment, and I will explain it in some details here.

    Due the the apparent confusion in your understanding of logical concepts and terminology, I do advise that you consult some basic references on the subject:

    2: PROOF OF THE STATEMENT CONTAINED IN THE POST:
    NEXT, and this is the most important part of the discussion, we look at the logical evidence that can be used to Prove or Reject the “Logical Statement” put by Rasheed.

    There are a number of methods that can be used to logically Prove or Disprove a statement, and these include “Deduction”, “Induction”, “Proof by Contradiction” amongst others, and Rasheed has conclusively proved his statement using “TOTAL INDUCTION”, where :

    a) He has shown, based on “The Accepted sources and references” for each of the Groups that they call the god they believe to be
    (the god of Abraham and Isaac) AND (The only true god),
    ALLAH
    This part of the statement is called Postulate, since it is not challenged!

    You can go back to the post and the linked page to see the references used.

    b) It follows that:

    the NAME of the god that is accurately determined by being:
    [(The god of Abraham and Isaac) AND (The only true god)] ACCORDING to the beliefs OF
    (Muslims) AND (Arab Christians and Jews to this day) AND (Early Christian and Jews at the time of Jesus)
    is ALLAH, which is what we set out to prove#.

    Put in mathematical format:

    Statement P= Muslims believe the name of the god of Abraham and Isaac who is the only true god is ALLAH
    VALUE: TRUE
    EVIDENCE: POSTULATE

    Statement Q= Early Christians and Jews at the time of Jesus believed that the name of the god of Abraham and Isaac who is the only true god is ALLAH
    VALUE =TRUE
    EVIDENCE: POSTULATE

    Statement R= Arab Christians and Jews to this day believe that the name of the god of Abraham and Isaac who is the only true god is ALLAH
    VALUE= TRUE
    EVIDENCE: POSTULATE

    Statement W= P AND Q AND R :
    The name of (the god who is accurately determined by being [the god of Abraham and Isaac AND who is the the only true god] ACCORDING to the belief of Muslims AND Early Christians and Jews at the time of Jesus AND Arab Christians and Jews to this day) is ALLAH
    VALUE: TRUE
    EVIDENCE: CONJUNCTION

    You can see that the statement is a Conjunction of Postulates, and therefore, can NOT be expressed in Conditional Format, Postulates are unchallenged Truths, and are not dependent on other statements for their truth i.e they ARE NOT CONDITIONAL on other statements.

    To further help you in your task, The only way to disprove Rasheed’s Logical Statement would be to disprove ANY of the constituent postulates.

    I hope this clarifies the logical issues for you

    Regards,

    Mamoun

    Mamoun

    June 12, 2008 at 7:14 pm

  20. Rasheed and Andrew,

    Do you realize the main argument of Rasheed’s post has degenerated into an argument about the rules of logic?

    This thread is so long, I wonder if what I have to add will even be read🙂

    Rasheed, you say in your original post that “Allah is most certainly the name of God used by Jesus and his disciples.” I would argue that not only is it possible that Jesus and his disciples might have used this name as a designation for the God of Israel (and therefore the God of Abraham), but that Jesus himself was Allah.

    Let me explain: As I understand it, Aramaic was spoken at the time of Jesus. Aramaic was the language of the Babylonians which replaced Hebrew as the language of the Jews during the Babylonian captivity. There are many similar sounding words and derivations in the Aramaic of Jesus’ time from the Hebrew pre-captivity. Elohim is one of the words used for God in the Hebrew Bible (Torah). The other is Yahweh. The Torah has two principle source texts: The Elohist or Priestly (Levitical) source which has its origins from the Northern Kingdom of Israel (Ephraim) prior to its destruction by Assyria and the Jahwist source with its origins in the Kingdom of Judah prior to the Babylonian captivity. The Elohists used Elohim for the word God. The Jahwists used Yahweh. Interestingly, Elohim is a plural masculine noun that is used with singular verbs. This may connote the characteristic of more than one God acting in unity (ie the Trinity) or it may simply lend extra emphasis to the divinity of this one singular god.

    Jehova is the English version of the Hebrew name Yahweh. It means “The Eternal”. In the King James Version of the Old Testament, it is replaced by the capitalized name LORD.

    Ehyeh or “I Am” is related in meaning and derivation to Yahveh or Jehova. Exodus Chapter 3 shows this relationship quite nicely:

    3 And Moses said, I will now turn aside, and see this great sight, why the bush is not burnt.
    4 And when the LORD saw that he turned aside to see, God called unto him out of the midst of the bush, and said, Moses, Moses. And he said, Here am I.

    6 Moreover he said, I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob. And Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God.
    7 ¶ And the LORD said, I have surely seen the affliction of my people which are in Egypt, and have heard their cry by reason of their taskmasters; for I know their sorrows;

    Here we see God being referred to in the third person as LORD or Jehova, and in the first person as I AM or Ehyeh. Thus the connection between Jehova and I AM and by extrapolation I AM to the Elohim of the Elohist source of the Hebrew Bible.

    Also in Exodus 3:

    13 And Moses said unto God, Behold, when I come unto the children of Israel, and shall say unto them, The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you; and they shall say to me, What is his name? what shall I say unto them?
    14 And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you.
    15 And God said moreover unto Moses, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, The LORD God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, hath sent me unto you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.

    The God speaking to Moses out of the burning bush tells him to say to his captive covenanted people, that I AM (Jehova or LORD) sent him. It is interesting to note that the Elohists taught the doctrine that Elohim (The God of Abraham) had never revealed His name until this episode with Moses.

    Now let’s look at the New Testament. In John 8:58-59 it reads,

    58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.
    59 Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.

    Why would the Jews want to stone Jesus? It is because he dared utter the name, Ehyeh, and even claim that he was that I Am, or Jehova. This proper name for God was understood by them to be so sacred that was considered blasphemy (through an incorrect translation of scripture) to pronounce it aloud. A blaspheme punishable by death. They would use as a substitute the names: Adonai, Lord, Elohim, or God.

    Jesus is the English translation of the Greek “Iesous”. Yehoshua or Yeshua corresponds to Iesous in the Hebrew version of the same text. (Of note: The English translation of Yeshua is Joshua). Yeshua means Savior. In Matt 1:20-21 it reads,

    20 But while he thought on these things, behold, the angel of the Lord appeared unto him in a dream, saying, Joseph, thou son of David, fear not to take unto thee Mary thy wife: for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Ghost.
    21 And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.

    It is interesting to see that the name Jesus not only identifies the Savior, but also describes his divine purpose. It is not unusual for there to be a reason to change one’s name to reflect a special purpose. For example Abram to Abraham, Sarai to Sarah, and Jacob to Israel.

    So Rasheed, I agree with you that Allah is the God of Abraham. Andrew, it shouldn’t be a problem to admit as much as well. As you can see from above, our Lord has been known to many by different names, but still is the same God. Where you, I, and Rasheed disagree is the doctrinal nature and purpose of this God. As none of us three has seen him, we can only do our best to figure out what we believe to be the truth about Him. However, all three of us literally worship the same being.

    Maybe a good analogy for this is knowing about the famous recluse, Howard Hughes. We may all have a different idea about what he was really like, and one of us may be more correct than the others, but the fact remains, we are still talking about the same person.

    What God or Allah does not want us to do is to place idolatrous Gods of our own creation before Him or to not believe in the existence of any God. I don’t think any of us fit into that category. In that we are brothers.

    Best Wishes,

    Don

    Don

    June 12, 2008 at 11:33 pm

  21. Mamoun,

    You missed the point of my posts. Allah=Allah is a semantical argument. It is based on a word -in this case a name. Since two persons or gods may have the same name (or a God and god), this statement cannot be proven true by your logical argument. I would also submit that Allah was a name of a Middle Eastern rain god. Would you say this is the same god as well? I am sure you would not.

    You see the problem we run into is the same one that Christians and Mormons have. At first glance it would appear that Jesus Christ=Jesus Christ. Dissect the Christology of Christianity and Mormonism though and you find them to be quite different. Both of them cannot be describing the same person.

    This is the problem we are having with the name Allah. If name Allah of Islam and the name Allah of Aramaic/Arabic Judaism and Christianity is the same, we must prove it not by his name, but by his attributes. This is further complicated by the semantical differences between the faiths. When a Christian speaks of faith, mercy, grace, etc. does he mean the same as when a Muslim speaks of these concepts?

    The Protestant and Roman Catholic churches have come against the same problem when discussing the word faith. The cry of the Reformation was ‘sola fide’ (faith alone). The Catholic church would respond by adding requirements to faith -baptism, mass, communion, etc. The response of the Reformers was that this was not faith-based salvation but one based on works (man doing something). Small nuances such as this have irreconcilably divided Christianity because they completely change everything!

    I asked Rasheed for a conditional statement not to be difficult, but for two reasons: 1) So I would not put words in his mouth, AND 2) so I had the conditions of his argument laid out and could dissect it for myself and demonstrate why I believed his conclusion to be false. This would allow me to make my proof based on his argument as he understood it. My intent has been to do this on Rasheed’s terms by his own statements, with no confusion as to what those statements were.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 13, 2008 at 12:37 am

  22. Andrew said:

    You see the problem we run into is the same one that Christians and Mormons have. At first glance it would appear that Jesus Christ=Jesus Christ. Dissect the Christology of Christianity and Mormonism though and you find them to be quite different. Both of them cannot be describing the same person.
    This is the problem we are having with the name Allah. If name Allah of Islam and the name Allah of Aramaic/Arabic Judaism and Christianity is the same, we must prove it not by his name, but by his attributes. This is further complicated by the semantical differences between the faiths. When a Christian speaks of faith, mercy, grace, etc. does he mean the same as when a Muslim speaks of these concept

    One thing that caught my attention was Andrew’s statement that because of differences in “Christology”, the Jesus Christ in whom Mormons believe must be a different Jesus to the one he believes in.

    I decided to apply this splendid reasoning to other areas and discovered that:

    1- Since the genealogy of Jesus in Luke and Matthew are different, the Evangelists must have been referring to TWO different Christs.

    2- The various accounts of the trial, crucifixion and ascension of Jesus Christ to heaven also suggest the existence of several persons named Jesus, one who ascended 3 days after his crucifixion (Luke), the other ascended some 37 days later (Acts).This is a distinctly strong possibility because the author of Luke is also said to have written Acts.! It is also possible that one particular Jesus from this group was crucified several times, each crucifixion was attended by a different set of witnesses !

    3 -Due to different Noah(ology) in Genesis 6:5 to 8:22, it appears there were also TWO Noahs referred to in the Bible: There is one Noah who took one pair of each living thing, and another Noah who took 7 pairs of clean animals and one pair of unclean animals in his ship.

    4- Looking at the order of creation in Genesis 1 & 2, there must have been TWO different universes created by God. In the first universe, God created Plants, then animals and finally man and woman, but in the second universe man was created first, followed by plants then animals and finally woman !

    5- Aaron is depicted as a High priest, the priesthood is confined to his off springs to this day, but there must have also existed another Aaron who crafted the golden calf and violated the most important commandment. Since the first Aaron maintained the privilege of being High Priest, he could not have been the same Aaron who made and worshiped the golden calf !

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 13, 2008 at 2:03 pm

  23. Andrew,

    Your semantical argument is so twisted. It is so unclear to me, I can’t keep up. Since when do we confuse the meaning of grace, faith, and works? They have one meaning. The roll of each in our different different belief systems differs, but their meanings are the same. It is interesting to me that you ignore the need for baptism when even Jesus himself was baptized (being perfect, no less), ignore the need for works, when Revelations 20:12-13 clearly states:

    “12 And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.
    13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.”

    These versus speak of how we will be judged (I assume that is to see who is deserving of salvation) by our works. However, it is only by the grace of our Savior that that salvation is even possible. Without a savior, our works do not matter.

    Are these semantical arguments regarding the meaning of the words grace and works? No. They are doctrinal arguments regarding the roll of Christ’s grace and our works in obtaining salvation.

    We may have different ideas about the doctrines taught by the God of Abraham, but we all speak of the same being.

    Don

    Don

    June 13, 2008 at 6:29 pm

  24. Rasheed,

    1- The genealogies are different. But they are different for a reason. Jews had two ways of doing a genealogy. One way used the blood lineage. The other demonstrates their laws about marriage and widows.

    You see, when a married man died without an heir, his brother would marry his wife and produce an heir. In some cases genealogies would show the heir as the son of the decedent and in others, the heir would be shown as the son of the blood father. This understanding clears up your problem.

    2- The ascension dates are not different. You are reading things into the text that are not there.

    3- Noah took two pairs of every animal and seven pairs of clean animals. This may have had to due with the simple fact that Noah and his family needed to eat. They wouldn’t eat the unclean animals and thus it only took one pair. The clean animals would need to reproduce faster for there to be enough to eat.

    4- Genesis 1 & 2 are two different accounts of Creation. The first is an ordered account and the second is the account of the creation of man.

    5- Aaron maintained the High Priesthood. You are reading your own presuppositions into the text. You have presupposed that Aaron would lose his position as priest due to the golden calf. The text never actually says Aaron worshiped the calf.

    These examples have nothing to do with my argument of a separate Christology between Christians and Mormons. The Mormon Jesus is created by God and divine, but not actually God. They believe that humans too can attain godhood as Jesus did. This is nothing like what Christianity believes; that Jesus is eternal, un-created, God in human flesh.

    Now will you please address my request and put your argument in a conditional logic statement?

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 13, 2008 at 6:41 pm

  25. Andrew

    No. I thought I told you my position.on your request before.

    Unfortunatelyn, I have nothing more to say to you on this subject.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 13, 2008 at 7:20 pm

  26. Rasheed,

    I will go forward with my proof without your statement. If I put words in your mouth, I’m sorry, but I did everything I could not to.

    So what you have said is: “The name Allah is used in Aramaic by Jesus, and possibly Moses (and other prophets). The same name is used by Muhammad in Arabic. Therefore, all of these prophets were naming the same Allah.”

    I will not address the Jewish positions in this argument as Judaism is now rabbinical and no longer lead by priests. The appearance and denial of the Messiah has left an interpretive void within Judaism, since the purpose of the religion was always to point toward the Messiah.

    First we must discuss the differences between the languages of Aramaic and Arabic. Words and names do not necessarily translate directly. So Allah in Aramaic may or may not directly translate to Allah in Arabic. It is also difficult to say whether the name Allah was used by Muhammad to legitimize Islam in the eyes of Jews and Christians of the region, since he obviously was aware of them. This is of course a chicken or the egg argument to which we cannot determine the answer.

    As I have shown, a name does not in and of itself imply identity. This is seen in the abundant use of the names Muhammad or Jesus (or Joshua the other English form of Yeshua) around the world. We also see this in family names passed down from one generation to the next. These are related people but not the same person, as in the case of Sr. and Jr. where both have the same name.

    There was most likely a Middle Eastern rain god also named Allah, so there must be something more than the use of the name Allah to this argument. Otherwise, this Middle Eastern rain god is also the God of the three religions in question. This is obviously not the case.

    So there must be attributes by which we identify this God. Just as we might look at two pictures of Rasheed and determine whether they are the same man, we need pictures of who Allah is according to Jews, Christians, and Muslims. Obviously, since no one has seen Allah, we must rely on a word picture to demonstrate this.

    The attributes I will put forward in my demonstration are: 1) Creativity, 2) Eternality, 3) Unity, 4) Truthfulness, 5) Attitudes toward mankind, 6) Fatherhood, 7) Love, and 8 ) Judgment & Salvation. I welcome submissions of other attributes, but these are the ones I have chosen to address.

    1) Both the “Allah” of the Bible and the Allah of Islam are considered the Creator of the universe. These are in agreement.

    2) Both the “Allah” of the Bible and the Allah of Islam are eternal and uncreated.

    3) Allah of the Qu’ran establishes that he is one in person and the only God. Allah of the Bible is the only God, but He is three in person.

    4) Allah of the Qu’ran advocates deception if it is for his cause. “Allah” of the Bible teaches loving truthfulness.

    5) Allah of the Qu’ran characterizes mankind as stupid and manipulative; changing his truth into lies. There is no doctrine of original sin, but man sins anyways. “Allah” of the Bible says that man is created in the image of God, but through the entrance of sin into the world is bent on evil and suppression of His eternal and unchanging truth. These are similar but not quite the same.

    6) Allah of the Qu’ran says having a son is beneath him. “Allah” of the Bible is the Son. He becomes man to speak to Abraham in the Old Testament and to die for sin in the New Testament. This is a distinct contrast; one is above mankind looking down, the other has humility and glory.

    7) Allah of the Qu’ran loves only those who submit and follow. It is a performance-based love. “Allah” of the Bible loves all mankind and is “not willing that any should perish” (although He knows that many will reject Him). He calls people to love enemies and says it’s easy to love those who love you.

    8 ) Allah of the Qu’ran will judge Muslims based on a scale weighing their deeds (and to my understanding non-Muslims are all sent to Hell). Some Muslims will be condemned because their works were not enough to outweigh their sins. “Allah” of the Bible states that one sin tilts the scales forever and outweighs any good deeds we may do. Salvation is only based on the work of Christ on the cross. God sees Christ when He looks at a man who has believed.

    So we see out of eight attributes two agree, five sharply disagree, and one is slightly (but significantly) different. Since eternality and creativity are commonly attributed to gods, these are about as adequate to determine whether the two are the same as skin color and hair color (but could quickly identify irreconcilable differences). Indeed, I imagine there are many Rasheeds with dark skin and dark hair. Unless we can rectify these five attributes that disagree, we do not have the same Allah.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 13, 2008 at 8:43 pm

  27. P.S. the smileys are supposed to be 8s followed by a parentheses.

    Andrew

    June 13, 2008 at 9:04 pm

  28. Andrew

    Thanks for the comments and I will fix the smiley later

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 13, 2008 at 9:15 pm

  29. Thanks Rasheed. I’m not trying to be difficult, I promise.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 13, 2008 at 10:05 pm

  30. Andrew,

    I appreciate your comments. You have made accurate statements regarding the differences in our beliefs regarding the nature of God. While I respect that you do not worship the being who’s constellation of characteristics is in conflict with what you believe about God (nor do I worship a being with the characteristics that you believe in), we nonetheless are talking about the same being.

    This is the way I see it. Let’s say that there is a man named Rasheed who exists and is writing posts on this website. I have never personally seen Rasheed (although his Avatar is quite handsome), nor do I know about where he came from, what he does for a living, where he lives, what his family is like, if he’s actually a mound of goo or a space alien🙂. All we can infer about him is what he has written. You may have an entirely different idea about him than I do, yet we are speaking to and writing about the same being. He might have friends that call him Rasheed, Sheed, RaRa, Rash, or whatever. We call him Rasheed. Nonetheless, we all know him as the same person.

    I find it fascinating the linkage between the establishment and apostacy of the primitive Christian Church and the development of Islam during the Dark Ages. At the time of Muhammad, the apostacy of the Christian Church was in full flower. They had turned toward idolatry and adopted many of the customs of their idolatrous neighbors. By that time, the Christian Church had split into the Roman Church and the Greek Church. Islam seems to be an attempt to get back to some of the root tenants espoused by the original followers of Jesus, particularly a rejection of the idolatry that pervaded all religions at the time. Instead of a Reformation, it was a complete rejection of the authority of the Roman Church. Unfortunately, it too missed the mark regarding the teachings of the God of Abraham (Allah, Elohim, Jehovah, God, LORD, Adonai, Jesus).

    I can see the same root God in all of our religions. Our particular branches have simply lead to some disagreement (sometimes sharp) regarding the nature of said God. Of the three of us, only my religion has the claim of a modern witnesses to describe Him. Because I believe these witnesses, I also believe that your versions of God are made up by man. I assume you both believe the same about my version. Regardless, I don’t believe that this qualifies as worshiping a different being or some sort of idol, but rather as it says in Isaiah 29:13,

    13 ¶ Wherefore the Lord said, Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honour me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men:

    The Lord recognizes hear that men will speak of Him, but their hearts are not with Him because they do not truly know Him.

    Don

    June 13, 2008 at 11:09 pm

  31. Rasheed,

    Is there anyway to preview these posts before posting them? My spelling and grammar need editing😦

    Don

    Don

    June 13, 2008 at 11:13 pm

  32. Don,

    Your premise makes for a weak argument because it does not fit the context of the discussion. According to your premise we are all reading the same text (i.e. this blog). If that were the case between Islam, Judaism, and Christianity then your case would fit.

    A more accurate premise would be to assume that the Rasheed that writes this blog is the same Rasheed that writes another blog of a different nature and character. When comparing the two side by side we find drastic differences in the writing styles and grammar, perhaps in different languages. One author is from London, the other is from the USA. The two talk about God (or Allah), but their descriptions on the nature of this God are drastically different and conflicting.

    We could not conclude logically that this was the same man without more convincing evidence.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 14, 2008 at 3:20 am

  33. Andrew,

    I follow what your are saying, but my point is that the Torah and the Old Testament have the same source texts. These source texts also probably have other sources. They can all be traced back to the same source: God (Allah, Elohim, Jehovah, LORD, Adonai’s) revelations to his prophets. Through the generations, changes were made and a divergence in understanding occurred. This is plainly exhibited in the New Testament, when Jesus taught in the Temple at the age of 12 and quoted Old Testament prophecy to confound the Jewish elders. He was the one who taught these prophets to begin with in his ante-mortal life (and who’s words are cited in the Torah and Old Testament). He knew what these prophecies were supposed to mean. His apostles continued this practice of interpretation and correction after His death.

    To apply this back to my original analogy, it would be as if the World’s understanding of Rasheed were based on our interpretation of his writings without ever knowing him personally. Or worse yet, to base their understanding of him based on second, third, and fourth hand accounts based on our writings. No matter how divergent these opinions become, we are still talking about the same person.

    Don

    Don

    June 14, 2008 at 7:38 pm

  34. Don,

    Your analogy presupposes that Muhammad’s revelations are from the same God, and therefore the source is the same. So really, you haven’t made an argument at all. You’ve made an invalid a priori assumption.

    What we are discussing is that the same God would not reveal one thing in the Torah and New Testament about Himself and then something completely different in the Qu’ran. An unchanging God would not do this, which is why Islam must either argue that the Bible has been drastically changed or admit that the god of the Qu’ran is not the God of the Bible. Remember, the Qu’ran states that Allah is the God of the Bible.

    So in essence, we’re back where we started. If we take the Bible as authoritative, we cannot logically conclude that Allah and Yahweh (or Elohim) are synonymous. Only in conceding the Muslim idea of rogue biblical copyists can we say that Allah is the God of Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 14, 2008 at 10:59 pm

  35. Assalamo alaikom Rasheed,

    I know that you want to maintain a maximum level of freedom of dialog on your blog, but I am also sure that you know very well the value of respect for conducting a successful dialog and for maintaining a successful blog with a large audience.

    There are many Muslims who follow your blog although they may not usually participate in posts or comments, and we all know how Muslims are sensitive when it comes to speaking about Allah. In one of the comments above, Allah was mentioned in a clearly disrespectful way, and I am sure everyone in your Muslim audience was outraged when they read it.

    So, my advice to you is please make sure your blog contributors take greater care to respect the blog readers in general and Muslim readers in particular.

    As a matter of fact that particular comment linking Allah and deception was disrespectful not just to Muslims, but to all readers in general, because the writer failed to show enough respect for the readers’ intelligence when he allowed himself to make ignorant statements without bothering to show any support for them.

    If his lack of knowledge and wisdom got him to make that conclusion about Allah, he needs to know that we know better and don’t have to take his conclusion for granted.

    It would have been wise to present the evidence along with the conclusion. And even when the conclusion is presented it should have been presented in a more respectful way. For example, instead of saying “Allah advocates deception”, a more respectful argument would be “Does Allah advocate deception when he says etc. etc…?” That way there would be room for discussion and dialog. But when the person presents such an outrageous conclusion that Allah advocates deception (period!), which is both insulting and known to be false, he will not only insult the feeling of the believers in Allah, but he will also look like a complete fool to them.

    I believe your Muslim readers deserve an apology, and your audience in general deserve and explanation about why it is false to claim that Allah advocates deception. Both must come from the writer of that comment. As for the explanation he must be requested to present support for his claim, then Muslims can respond and prove him wrong.

    -Abdo

    عبده

    June 15, 2008 at 10:24 am

  36. Abdo,

    I’m sorry. I was not attempting to offend anyone. I will go back and find evidence for what I was saying later.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 15, 2008 at 2:59 pm

  37. Andrew

    It seems that you have finally decided to engage in the debated having used 11 comments demanding Raheed to re-write his argument in the wrong conditional format, I have noticed that despite the length and details you put in your comment, there was not a single (IF… THEN… ) statement!

    Anyway, let us get to the substance of your argument:

    1- You said:

    Words and names do not necessarily translate directly. So Allah in Aramaic may or may not directly translate to Allah in Arabic

    I do not see that Rasheed referred to the word “Allah” as a word that can be translated, since it is a personalised “name”, just like Andrew and Rasheed, which would remain the same irrespective of the language you speak and unlike generic names such as table, chair, man etc…

    2- The main and fatal flaw with your argument is that:

    All the 8 “attributes” that you have had the trouble to list in some detail, and not suitable for IDENTIFYING the true god that we are seeking determine. Not withstanding the fact in some cases you were clearly misrepresented the Muslim’s position, but ALL 8 points in your comment were ‘Subjective opinion’ and not “Objective attributes“,

    A “Subjective Opinion” is an expression of what “someone or a group of people think or believe about a certain topic, according to their experience, perspective and mental faculties, imagination, etc”. It is different to an Objective attribute, which is independent of the opinion of anyone.

    As you know, Subjective opinion can never be the basis of establishing facts, and that is why they are inadmissible as evidence anywhere in the world.

    ALL 8 points that you listed fall under the “Subjective Opinion” category. They are subjective because you were stating what YOU think to be the attribute of Allah as YOU see them and as YOU think other Christians, that YOU accept as Christians. You then compared one set of subjective opinions with the attributes of Allah as YOU THINK Muslims believe them to be.

    The determination of the identity of the true god, based on comparing subjective opinions of people is not a scientifically or logically sound method to prove your case, simply because if you ask people ” What do you think the attributes of Allah are? ” you will naturally receive millions of different answers, because no two people have exactly the same mental faculties, imagination, background, knowledge, education ..etc.

    Your method in trying to conduct your argument, will inevitably lead you to the conclusion that there are in fact not just 2 different gods, but millions of god for Christians alone and a similarly large number of gods that Muslims believe in. This is obviously not a suitable or scientific way of conducting the debate.

    The scientific and logical way of determining the identity of the true god is to identify His identity based only on objective attributes . This is what I have been trying to explain to you all along.

    So far, the only “Objective attributes” of true god in this debate have been put forward by Rasheed in his post and repeated in my previous comments, and these are:

    Allah is the name of the god that is ACCURATELY determined by the following objective attributes:

    1- He is the god of Abraham

    2- He is the only true god

    I think, Don was also trying to get you to differentiate between reality and your subjective opinion.

    Based only on these objective attributes, the argument put by Rasheed are clearly proven beyond any reasonable doubt.

    Mamoun

    June 15, 2008 at 7:06 pm

  38. Mamoun,

    IF Allah in the Qu’ran has the same attributes as the “Allah” of the Bible THEN they are the same.

    Attributes are not subjective. When God makes a statement of who He is, it’s not up for debate.

    Stating Allah of the Qu’ran is the God of Abraham doesn’t make it true. I could claim any God as the God of Abraham 2100 years later and that does not make it a true statement. I have yet to see a demonstration of why this is true.

    Any God of a monotheistic religion MUST by rule claim to be the one true God. It would not be monotheistic otherwise.

    You have only proven that you follow your own preconceieved notions and have not applied sound logic to the argument.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 15, 2008 at 8:36 pm

  39. Andrew
    It is now so clear that you are not aware of what you are saying, especially when it comes to scientific terminology.
    1. You said:

    Attributes are not subjective. When God makes a statement of who He is, it’s not up for debate.

    This assertion is UNDOUBTEDLY WRONG. Since we are not agreeing on what God has said, so the attributes that we assign to Him according to what we BELIEVE He has said is a COMPLETELY SUBJECTIVE, by DEFINITION of the meaning of the word “Subjective”. You may want do a little research to figure the concept of the word “subjective” (if it matters for you) in the following resources: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/subjectivity, http://www.websters-online-dictionary.org/definition/subjectivity, http://www.askoxford.com/concise_oed/subjective?view=uk, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subjectivity.

    2. You said:

    Stating Allah of the Qu’ran is the God of Abraham doesn’t make it true. I could claim any God as the God of Abraham 2100 years later and that does not make it a true statement.

    A- In fact you can NOT claim [in your whole mental health] that any other god -except for the ONE and ONLY God of Abraham Himself- as being the God of Abraham, not now nor after 2100 years. This is simply because there is ONLY ONE God of Abraham. This is the meaning of an “Objective” fact that I tried to demonstrate for you in my previous comment, a fact that DOES NOT depend on any one’s thoughts or beliefs. To simplify if for you:
    i- We know that Abraham had a god. Further, we know that Abraham had ONLY ONE god. We also know that this UNIQUE god is The ONLY TRUE God.
    ii- So, If some one, now or after 4200 years, says that his god is the God of Abraham, then this is Quite Sufficient to UNIQUELY identify his god: He is The ONLY TRUE God of Abraham and not NOT any other god.
    B- Thus, when [Muslims, AND Christians & Jews who lived at Jesus time and spoke Aramaic, AND Arabic Christians & Jews, (AND any other person)] say that “their god is the God of Abraham” then this means that their god is, and nothing but, The God of Abraham. And when they call this God “ALLAH” in their Books, then any one -whether he believes or not in the God of Abraham, and whether he likes or dislikes that name- can say TRULY that “ALLAH is the Name of the God of the Quran and the Bible”. Simple, isn’t it?

    3. A Final Word: You said:

    Any God of a monotheistic religion MUST by rule claim to be the one true God.

    No one has talked about monotheistic religions’ gods, we are talking here in this post about ONLY ONE God: Abraham’s God, not any one else.

    Mamoun

    June 16, 2008 at 1:48 am

  40. Andrew said:

    I’m sorry. I was not attempting to offend anyone. I will go back and find evidence for what I was saying later.

    Sadly, this sums up Andrew’s attitude: Find anything negative, anyone said about Islam and hold on to it without any critical appraisal.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 16, 2008 at 10:48 am

  41. Mamoun,

    Attributes are not subjective when stated by God. When God makes a statement about Himself we can take Him at His word or we can call Him a liar and misrepresent who He is. There is no subjectivity in this. It is one thing if you disagree with the attributes with which I have described Allah. If you do, you are free to correct them (using evidence). But arguing that they are subjective leads me to conclude that you believe Allah is up to your own interpretation.

    You gave two qualities that make Allah the God of the Bible.

    1) Claiming to be the One True God
    2) Claiming to be the God of Abraham

    These are completely insufficient. They are claims that any one can make and attribute to a god. Take a step outside of Islam for a moment and you will see this to be the case.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 16, 2008 at 4:01 pm

  42. Rasheed,

    It is disappointing that you find it necessary to attack my character rather than have a discussion. Nevertheless, I have found what I was looking for to back up my claims of deception.

    “Muhammad bin Maslama got up saying, “O Allah’s Apostle! Would you like that I kill him [Ka’b bin Al-Ashraf]?” The Prophet said, “Yes,” Muhammad bin Maslama said, “Then allow me to say a (false) thing (i.e. to deceive Kab). “The Prophet said, “You may say it,” (Hadith Vol. 5, Book 59, #369).

    YUSUFALI: That they said (in boast), “We killed Christ Jesus the son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah”;- but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but so it was made to appear to them, and those who differ therein are full of doubts, with no (certain) knowledge, but only conjecture to follow, for of a surety they killed him not. Nay, Allah raised him up unto Himself; and Allah is Exalted in Power, Wise. (Qu’ran 4:157-158 )

    So in the first case Muhammad advocates lying. In the second case, Allah has deceived the disciples and followers of Jesus by making it appear to them that it was Jesus being crucified. As always, feel free to rebut.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 16, 2008 at 4:24 pm

  43. Andrew

    I am sorry, I did not mean to attack you character, only your methods of researching Islam.

    I am sure that you understand that there is a disagreement between various religions and sects about what God actually said,

    Even when people are in agreement on what God said, there is still disagreement between them on on the interpretation of what God said, consequently, what you claim to be Allah’s attributes is entirely based on “Your interpretation” of words that YOU believe came from Allah, and therefore is a completely subjective view, this is so obvious.

    When you say “such and such is one of Allah’s attributes”, you are stating “YOUR interpretation” of the text that “You” believe, came from Allah, if this is not subjective then, I do not know what is.

    A good example of how subjective the attributes you listed,would be the so called “evidence” you listed on your previous comment i.e the story of Kaab bn Al Ashraf, and the crucifixion of Jesus, both of your interpretations are contested by Muslims, but this is another discussion, and therefore they represent your subjective interpretation of the texts.

    You would not say the same, about to the biblical narration in Luke 24:13-34, where Jesus is said to have appeared to the disciples, in shape they did recognize, and walked with them on the road to Emmaus, and they talked to him about the crucifixion, and he did not reveal his identity to them, you would not call that deception. I bring this example not because I believe it happened that way, but just to demonstrate to you what is a subjective opinion.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 16, 2008 at 5:06 pm

  44. Rasheed,

    My interpretations may be wrong as I have admitted. That doesn’t make God’s words subjective. It makes my interpretation poor. We must have a standard for truth.

    The example you give from Luke 24:13-34 never implies deception. Jesus did not hide himself from them. They were slow to recognize him. This again is not an example of a subjective text, but a poor interpretation.

    If you find the attributes I’ve listed not in agreement with what the Qu’ran says please give reason why. I have made claims and do not have the ideological framework to dissect the claims any further. I can only speak for my own faith and don’t pretend to do otherwise.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 16, 2008 at 6:00 pm

  45. Andrew

    you said:

    If you find the attributes I’ve listed not in agreement with what the Qu’ran says please give reason why. I have made claims and do not have the ideological framework to dissect the claims any further. I can only speak for my own faith and don’t pretend to do otherwise.

    This I find very encouraging, for it is one thing to differ on what are the attributes of Allah, the god of Abraham, and this would be a legitimate discussion, quite another to try and define my faith for me by insisting that I do not worship the god of Abraham.

    I said that I worship the god of Abraham, and that I call Him Allah, and this is how I define my faith.

    If you say to me, “All your ideas about Allah, the god of Abraham are wrong, including His nature, attributes etc”, this would be a legitimate argument, and we can have a real discussion about it,

    What I can not accept, is someone trying to define my own faith for me. This is what I believe you were doing throughout this discussion.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 16, 2008 at 6:52 pm

  46. Rasheed,

    I am not at all trying to define your faith for you. This is a discussion and I presented my side in plain view to allow you to present your side as well. I understand that you believe, as Islam teaches, that Allah is the God of Abraham. My argument is simply that saying it is so does not make it true. My issue is that every time the Qu’ran says that Allah is the God of Abraham, or Moses, or Jesus it redefines who Abraham, Moses, and Jesus are. Without a proper and convincing demonstration to prove Abraham, Moses, and Jesus are not who Jews and Christians have known them to be, all we have is a claim.

    In the same way, if I were to bring a case before a court I must present evidence to substantiate all claims (especially those significantly in disagreement with previously accepted facts). Claims themselves can not be admitted as evidence. Do you follow what I’m saying?

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 16, 2008 at 7:51 pm

  47. Andrew

    you said:

    I understand that you believe, as Islam teaches, that Allah is the God of Abraham.

    It is not only me who call the god of Abraham “Allah”, Christian and Jews who lived at the time of Jesus also used the name Allah for the god of Abraham. You also referred in your comments earlier to ” Allah of the Bible” which I assume meant the god of Abraham.

    There is only one true god, and He is the god of Abraham. This is an objective reality, irrespective of what I or you think.

    You then said:

    every time the Qu’ran says that Allah is the God of Abraham, or Moses, or Jesus it redefines who Abraham, Moses, and Jesus are. Without a proper and convincing demonstration to prove Abraham, Moses, and Jesus are not who Jews and Christians have known them to be, all we have is a claim.

    There is only one Abraham, one Moses and one Jesus that were sent by the one true god of Abraham. This also is an objective reality and does not change no matter what I, you, or anyone else think,

    Telling a story or part of a story of any of these prophets differently to what you can find in the whichever version of the Bible is prevalent at a certain point in time, does not create another Abraham, Moses or Jesus. We have a dispute over what actually happened to them. I think the Bible suffered changes in some places,and can not be relied upon as a perfect historical record.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 17, 2008 at 11:31 am

  48. Rasheed,

    I agree with what you said and which was previously mentioned by Mamoun. God Almighty is one, our different mental images of Him do not make new Gods, and the same goes for our mental images of Abraham, Moses, Jesus, etc.

    There is no point in arguing about whether there is one Abraham or two, one Moses or two, etc. What should be discussed is this: how the mental images of God Almighty and the mental images of His messengers are/were created?

    Clearly anything we know about God Almighty and His messengers comes primarily from scripture. Each believer takes the scriptures of his own religion to be the ultimate source for information, and takes the religious men in his religion to be the final authority for interpreting those scriptures.

    So, that’s how our mental images are formed: by reading and interpreting scripture.

    The argument now goes back again (as will always) to the authenticity of the scriptures. Which scripture is infallible, and which one has errors. Which one is the true word of God Almighty, and which one has obvious human contributions. The word of God can not contain contradictions or false content, but human writings will definitely contain some degree of error.

    If someone takes his own idea of God Almighty, or of Moses, Abraham, etc. to be THE TRUTH it is simply because he takes his scriptures and his understanding of the scriptures to be THE TRUTH. Even if they accept some truth about other people’s scripture, they will interpret those other scriptures in a negative way in order to eventually show that their own mental images are the right ones and other people are wrong.

    So what needs to be discussed again and again is scripture and more scripture; their validity, authenticity, writers, origins, interpretation, etc.

    -Abdo

    عبده

    June 17, 2008 at 1:58 pm

  49. Rasheed and Abdo,

    I can agree with the statement that Almighty God is one God and there are no other gods. I can also agree with the statement that the true God is the God of Abraham. It just doesn’t follow that the God of Islam is this God, which is what I’ve been trying to point out all along.

    Obviously, I affirm there is a true God who was the God of Abraham, but is that God the Allah of Islam? I am awaiting any proof to validate this claim. All we have now is opposing Scriptures.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 17, 2008 at 4:01 pm

  50. Obviously we are getting nowhere with this topic. Rasheed, any new postings? How about one on the definition of a prophet, why God speaks to us through them, and are there any modern prophets (if not, why?). We all believe in prophets, but only Mormons believe their are living prophets today. Another possible point of discussion: Why can there not be more than one volume of scripture? Did God only have dealings with the peoples of the Middle East? If he had dealings with other nations in other areas, where are those records?

    Don

    Don

    June 18, 2008 at 12:29 am

  51. Andrew

    The phrase you use “Allah of Islam” exists only in your imagination, since Islam did not introduce Allah to the world, He was known before Islam as I have demonstrated.

    I think I have demonstrated that Allah was also the name that early Christians used for the god of Abraham, if you are finding this too hard to stomach, well then, it is not going to change, because you do not like it.

    Rasheed

    Rasheed

    June 18, 2008 at 8:03 pm

  52. Rasheed,

    You have demonstrated nothing. You demonstrated that you believe what Islam teaches, but gave no reason for why anyone else should believe it. You seem to think that confirmation from those who agreed to start with means you must be right. That is a logical fallacy.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 18, 2008 at 10:55 pm

  53. Andrew
    Very Nice! We have passed now 99% of the way.
    You said:

    I can agree with the statement that Almighty God is one God and there are no other gods. I can also agree with the statement that the true God is the God of Abraham.

    and said also:

    Obviously, I affirm there is a true God who was the God of Abraham

    I congratulate you on your braveness to recant from your old statements about the possibility of existence of as many “Gods of Abraham” as you wish from now till 2100 years later, and the possibility of existence of as many “True Gods” as the number of all monotheistic religions in the world!
    All it remains now as you said is an evidence for your question:

    is that God [i.e., the Almighty ONE TRUE God of Abraham], the the Allah of Islam?

    This is very simple for you to check by yourself (So it is only 1% of our way to close this prolonged discussion).
    To find the answer for yourself, you have first to know some basic principles about the differences between scientific methods used for different branches of knowledge. Here is a sample at a glance [Note: this is not an inclusive list, nor it is in a formal form, because we are talking in a blog, not a thesis exam]:
    1. For Nature-Related sciences, such as Physics, Chemistry, etc., the MAJOR method to prove if some statement is true is to VALIDATE it in the laboratory, otherwise it will be false.
    2. For sciences of Abstract and Intellectual Nature, such as Mathematics, Logic, etc., the methods of proof of truth are based on the Logical Laws, such as INDUCTION, CONTRADICTION, etc.
    3. Sciences related to the Human Behavior such as Psychology, Sociology, etc., have their own methods and techniques of validation, e.g., “Qualitative Methods” such as case studies or phenomenology, and “Quantitative Methods” such as hypotheses testing and other statistical analyses.
    4. Finally, when it comes to studying “Thoughts” and “Faiths” of various religions, doctrines and ideologies etc., then there are two phases of the methodology:
    A- The phase of “Identifying” the specific faith or ideology basics, which has ONLY ONE method to know: “TRACING what that religion or ideology is saying -BY ITSELF- as being ITS FAITHS”, and,
    B- The of phase of criticizing those faiths and thoughts, which has its special methods and techniques, such building the discussions on the “Common” postulates that are granted between debaters (if their intention is to discuss freely for the sake of discovering truth), or using the laws of logic implication contradiction etc.), also taking a a base point what the opponent SAYS BY HIMSELF to confute other sayings by him (if their sake is only disputation).
    [I apology for detailing those known basics, but I thought it is very important when discussing some one like Andrew to state clearly -and in advance- the scientific and standard rules of a successful and positive discussion, as we have learned from his previous comments that he does not care much about these standards.]
    So, as you can see, despite the incentive behind what you are saying here, when you want to know [AND NOT NECESSARILY TO SOPHIST OR DEBATE], who is the god of the Quran worshipped by Muslims, YOU HAVE ONLY ONE WAY: TO READ WHAT THE QURAN AND MULSIMS SAY ABOUT WHOM IS THEIR GOD.
    Therefore, when the Quran and Muslims say that their god who worship is The ONLY ONE TRUE God of Abraham , who HAS ALREADY BEEN NAMED ALLAH, then no one, not you or any other one, has a logical, or even dialectical right to say otherwise. The decisive factor in this aspect is only WHAT THE QURAN AND MULSIMS SAY. This is not a logical or experimental or even a historical issue which can proved or disproved by any means other than reading the Quran and see what it says in that concern. ASSIGNING BELIEFS TO THE BELIEVERS IS SUBJECT ONLY TO WHAT THE BELIEVERS SAY ABOUT THEIR BELIEFS. [Refer to 4-A above].
    Of course you still have a large room to discuss in, [which I mentioned in 4-B above]. That includes a very wide range of issues; for example you can discuss which “Subjective” views of ALLAH -The ONLY ONE TRUE God of Abraham- are more accurate and reliable: Those mentioned in the Quran or those in the “Bibles”. Also you can discuss which scriptures are more likely to be the Words of ALLAH -The God of the Quran and the Bible-, and so on. In this way you can be saying something that respect your readers, irrespective of the content of what you say, instead of the sophistic objections.

    Mamoun

    Mamoun

    June 19, 2008 at 1:13 am

  54. Mamoun,

    You can stop talking down to me like I’m stupid. I’m not. Thank you for making my point for me. You said:

    “YOU HAVE ONLY ONE WAY: TO READ WHAT THE QURAN AND MULSIMS SAY ABOUT WHOM IS THEIR GOD.”

    This is false and terrible logic. What a book or a person say about someone, whether it is God or a person, does not make it true. You seem to have fallen for the old adage that “if you tell a lie enough times it becomes the truth.” The authority for who God is does not come from books or what people say about Him but from God Himself and who He says He is. The burden of proof is on the Qu’ran to prove itself to be the word of God.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    June 19, 2008 at 4:19 am

  55. Very well said Mamoun.

    Once we agree that there is one true God for the whole universe and that all others are false gods, we have to find out about this true god.

    Since cognition about God belongs to the realm of metaphysics, we cannot use our own senses to find Him. If God wants us to perceive of Him, then we must receive guidance from Him, otherwise everything we say or believe will remain within the circles of conjecture and guesswork.

    I believe we all agree that messages in the form of scripture revealed/inspired to messengers have been the way God chose to reveal His truth to us. We have the Quran and we have the Bible (OT and NT), but while the books are opposing in many ways, each group of believers insist that their own book is what should be followed as the Word of God. As followers of these books, this is what we should be discussing, i.e. who has the right Word of God?

    I made a suggestion some time ago on this blog that we hold our discussion on this blog under the hypothetical scenario that we all are children of Abraham. I further explained that we can imagine that we were actually living during our father Abraham’s time (some thousands of years B.C.), but that we had gone to sleep one night and woke up in the year 2008. So, we don’t know anything about the Quran or the Bible (because neither was written yet at Abraham’s time). So our duty is to find out which of these (if any) is the true word of Almighty God (the God of our father Abraham).

    I am so glad that now we are all ready to accept that there is one god and he is Almighty God of Abraham.

    So let’s move on from here to some actual steps and discuss how we are going to compare among the available scripture (OT, NT, and Quran) to see which one is “more likely” (as Mamoun put it) to be the Word of God.

    I propose that we use the following simple approach. Since we all would agree to think of ourselves as children of Abraham and none of us would desire to go astray from our father’s faith, we then should judge the different scripture based on Abraham’s faith, whatever goes in line with what Abraham believed is credible, and we throw away everything else. In other words, the scripture which scores the highest correlation measure with Abraham’s faith should be the one that’s most likely the Word of God.

    But first we should agree on exactly what were the terms of Abraham’s faith. I don’t think this is a problem, and even if we need to spend a lot of time to discuss it, it is absolutely necessary because it will be the baseline for the rest of the discussion. But I don’t think it will be a problem because from what I know, there is very high agreement among the three religions on Abraham and what his faith was.

    So what do you say Rasheed as a first step you start a new post with the title: “The God of our Father Abraham”, and present your own understanding of the articles of our father Abraham’s faith. We can spend as much time as we need to discuss that post and see how much we can agree on in that regard. I am very confident that we will agree on many aspects of our father Abraham’s faith.

    -Abdo

    عبده

    June 19, 2008 at 8:05 am

  56. Abdo,

    A capital idea. It would be a fascinating discussion from this point of view. However, I don’t know how it will be possible to come to an agreement on what Abraham believed given that we argue over the validity of the various sources describing him. And since we actually didn’t live during his time, to what authority do we appeal?

    I would like to see a discussion regarding what our various religions teach about Abraham and his religion/God without judging the validity of each other’s sources. For example, Andrew apparently doubts the validity of the LDS canon, The Book of Abraham. Regardless, I believe that excluding sources does nothing to help us in our search for truth. Let each decide on their own how much stock to place in a certain source. Perhaps, then we can find the areas where we all are in agreement and more completely identify the areas of disagreement. I hope that we can stay away from statements of condemnation and just stick to teaching what we have studied and with which we are familiar. If there is a level of disagreement, generally it is because there is a level of misunderstanding and we should address our questions and comments to each other in a spirit of brotherhood in an attempt to clear up misunderstanding not in the spirit of contention. I believe in the following tenant: Understanding comes from the Spirit of God. The Spirit of God is light and truth. Contention is of the Devil and drives away the Spirit. I will refuse to participate in contentious discussions because it will not lead us to the discovery of the truth via the enlightenment of our minds and hearts.

    Don

    June 19, 2008 at 10:06 pm

  57. Don,

    You are right when you say that our ideas about Abraham are based each on his/her own scriptures. However, I believe that our scriptures agree the most about Abraham, and this is what makes the discussion about him a good starting point.

    Let’s see whether that’s true or not. Let’s see how much we can agree on Abraham. Because if we turn out to be in agreement about Abraham, that could be a good basis for subsequent discussions.

    عبده

    June 20, 2008 at 3:37 am

  58. Early christians and jews believed the name of the god of Abraham and Isaac was YHVH, this is mentioned over 6800 times in Hebrew Masoretic text. The name Jehovah is the closest accepted latin interpretation by phonetics of the name; therefore are one and the same.

    allah on the other hand is not; there is no mention of this name in the bible or torah. Muslims often fail to mention that in pagan arabia; the predominant religion before islam, there was a Supreme Quaresh rock god of the Q’aba named “Allah” (which muhammad’s father followed). In 632AD all idols in the Q’aba apart from the black stone was destroyed which represented in pagan terms the spiritual home of allah. This doesn’t even mention that Muhammad abrogated verses which tried to associate his allah with theirs this is indicated in Q53:19-22 concerning three pagan godesses. This mistake is then confessed by Muhammad in Sura Hajj (Pilgrimage) 22:52-53 as being the work of Satan.

    We can also see that Allah is just a name and does not mean “The God” (al-ilah) as “some” might like to say.
    al-ilah=in arabic الاله
    allah= in arabic الله
    where did the i(alaf) go? The two are not the same.

    The only claim that allah is YHVH is that muhammad says so; the names bear no similarities or connection.

    Rob Hiengler

    June 26, 2008 at 4:12 pm

  59. Yahweh is not a name. Yahweh is an approximation for the pronunciation of the four-letter Latin symbol YHVH which is a transliteration of the four-letter Hebrew symbol י-ה-ו-ה (from right to left: yud, hey, vav, aleph). This four-letter combination is called the “tetragrammaton”. This combination is not the name of God, it is just a symbol which the Hebrews used in place of the actual name of God. This symbol is used as a replacement for the name of God only when written in the Torah, but in reading it is not pronounced as is. In reading, the tetragrammaton is replaced by saying the word “adonai” (which is the Hebrew word for “lord”, or “my lord”).

    The word “Jehovah” is a RECENT word from 1534 by Martin Luther as the “speakable” English version of YHVH. And since YHVH is not the name of God, then “Jehovah”, which is based on YHVH, is not the name of God either. When translators of old hit the Jewish combination YHVH they weren’t sure how to translate it. So they improvised ways to make it into a word by adding vowels to it. The word “Yahweh” and its English equivalent “Jehovah” evolved over time as the more favorable choices.

    None of this proves that the name which God declared to Moses (or to the prophets and messengers before Moses, for that matter) was “Yahweh” or “Jehovah” or even anything that sounded like these two words. YHVH was just a combination to replace the name of God in writing, and adonai was the Hebrew word which replaced the name of God in reading.

    Apparently, there is no way to find the answer to this question in the Bible (neither OT nor NT) because the name of God was intentionally replaced both in writing (with the tetragrammaton) and in reading (with the word “adonai”).

    So, again, what is the name of God?

    What about “I AM”?

    “I AM” is not a name either.

    God’s reply to Moses was: “ehyeh asher ehyeh”, which can be interpreted in so many different ways… but in no way does this phrase stand as a name. Here are translations which I found:
    I am that I am (Hertz, p 215)
    I will be what I will be (Rashi, from Hertz, p 215)
    I am who I am (Sarna, 1986, p 52)
    I will be what I want to be (S.R. Hirsch from Plaut, p 405)
    I will be what tomorrow demands (Plaut, p 405)
    It is he who creates what comes into existence (Albright, p 171)
    He brings into existence whatever exists (Enc. Jud.)
    I will be with him that I will be
    I exist and fulfill my promises
    The one who spoke and the world came into being,
    spoke and all was (Drazin, p. 59, various sources)
    The one who spoke to the world at the beginning “be”,
    and it was, and in the future will say to it
    “be” and it will be (ibid.)
    I am he who was, am and will be (ibid.)

    Moses asked God for His name and he received “ehyeh asher ehyeh” as an answer. The phrase does not give the name of God, but it gives an adequate description of God.

    So, we don’t need to look for the name of God here either because we won’t find it.

    So? What happened to the name of God? Is it lost? No.

    “Allah” is a name, it is not a symbol and it is not a phrase, and it is not a merger of multiple words. It is a proper name and it was used in both Arabic and Aramaic even before Mohamed.

    Ok, so whose name is it. Although the pagan Arabs worshiped various idols, they still believed in the Almighty God creator of the heavens and earth. The Arabic word “moshrikeen” (مشركين) describes this type of mixed faith; it refers to people who worship other gods besides the Almighty God. The Arabs had names for each of the little gods they worshiped, but when it comes to God, they knew Him by only one name: “Allah”.

    “Allah” was also used by Aramaic speakers as well as by Arabic speaking Christians and Jews (Jewish and Christian Arabs, yes they exist!). All of these people knew the Almighty God by the name “Allah”.

    So, while the Bible did not keep record of the true name of God, the Arabic language preserved the name of God.

    Allah confirmed his name in countless locations in the Quran and emphasized that He is the God of the entire universe including the various nations of the world and the various great prophets and messengers, such as Abraham and Moses and Jesus.

    If a man has two sons and one of them forgets his father’s name that does not mean that the name which the other son still remembers is not the true name. So just because the Bible did not preserve the name of Almighty God, you cannot hold that as an argument against the name “Allah” as the true name of God.

    Abdo

    June 26, 2008 at 9:51 pm

  60. Correction,

    The Hebrew tetragrammaton should read (right to left): yud-hey-vav-hey

    -Abdo.

    Abdo

    June 27, 2008 at 2:46 pm

  61. The Mujizas (Miracles) of Muhammad (Pbuh) can be found here:
    http://hensan.wordpress.com/2007/12/09/mujijat-rosulallah-muhamad-saw/

    Arkan

    June 28, 2008 at 9:10 pm

  62. Rob,

    When you make any claim, can you please state your sources, so that they can verified. You made wild claims about Allah, which are baseless and confused, for example you alleged that there was a rock god by the name Allah. A complete falsehood.

    The fact that the Arabs referred to Allah as the Lord of the House and to the Kaaba as the House of God is because the House in Mecca was built by Abraham for the worship of Allah. To this day we use these names for the House in Mecca.

    In the Dead Sea Scrolls, it says:

    I, Abraham built and alter (at Bethel) and called to god, praising him. I then went to the Holy mountain and to Hebron

    see this link.

    Other places in the Bible also mention “Beit El” in references to the place of worship built by Abraham.

    Now Bethel is actually “Bet El” or “Bet Al” since the Hebrew language does not have the letter “E” in its alphabet. Bet El means ‘The House of El’, and El is one of the names of God given in the Bible. So the practice of calling houses of worship as houses of God is common to both Arabs and Jews and is actually attested to in The Bible.

    Rasheed

    July 1, 2008 at 12:45 pm

  63. Obviously, English is not my mother tongue, but I know that the general rule when writing names in English is to capitalize the initial letter of the name. I also know that failing to capitalize is typically taken as a sign of disrespect.

    Whether or not Rob has enough respect for Allah to capitalize His name is something that has to do with the level and quality of knowledge Rob has about Allah, and obviously that’s something that Rob needs to work on. What concerns us about Rob’s lack of respect for Allah is that it is connected to respect for those in the audience of this blog who belong to Islam (followers of Allah’s religion). They definitely don’t accept to see any sign of disrespect to their god; Allah.

    So if Rob does not have respect for Allah because he has limited/distorted information about Allah, I believe the Muslims in this blog would very much welcome to help him improve his respect for Allah by helping him increase the level and quality of his information about Allah. But in order to get their help Rob must show some respect to them, and that requires that he must show the proper respect for their god; Allah.

    I personally will take what Rob did in his comment above as a mistake (although I am not sure which one he would admit to be the mistake, the five times where he failed to capitalize, or the one time where he did). However I would like to ask everyone to pay closer attention to these things because they can be very unhealthy for the discussions on this blog.

    -Abdo

    Abdo

    July 2, 2008 at 5:33 am

  64. wohOOoo bro Rasheed u the man!

    andrew wake up and realize the truth!

    jesus is just a messengersend by GOD “ALLAH”, just like HE send 124000 messengers, each one of them were granted miracles by HIM, just that the jews were too much surprised to see a messenger with miracles, killing him (christian belief) and late on the same jews turning christians making the messengee a saviour and son of god! (astaghfirullah)

    naveed

    July 19, 2008 at 4:17 pm

  65. It has only recently come to my attention that Andrew had posted a comment where he presents argument to his claim of Allah advocating deception. This one here is my response.

    The proof he presented in his comment includes two texts.
    The first text is presented to show Mohamed advocating deception by allowing a Muslim man to lie in order to be able to kill a person called Kab bin Alashraf.

    The second text is a translation of a verse in The Quran where Allah tells us that the crucifixion did not happen but it was made to look like so to them (i.e. to those who claimed to have crucified/killed Jesus). This text is presented to show that Allah used deception.

    First, I would like to note the following

    • The original claim by Andrew was about Allah not about Mohammed. However, it’s ok with me if he presented evidence against Mohamed as well. After all Mohammed is Allah’s messenger and anything he says or does must be coming from Allah, unless of course if Allah rejects it.

    • However, what’s actually more important is that the claim is about “advocating” deception not about simply “giving permission” or having “used” deception once upon a time when it was necessary. I looked up the word “advocate” (as a verb) in an online dictionary, and what I got as the meaning was: “to speak, plead, or argue in favor of, ”. So, to claim that Allah advocates deception you must show passages in The Quran where Allah directly or indirectly talks to His believers in favor of or pleading for or arguing for deception.

    Now, my response is that both of the two texts above do not constitute evidence at all for the claim that Allah advocates deception. Here is why.

    1) Mohammed and the killing of Kab bin Alashraf

    Kab Alashraf was a fierce enemy of Prophet Mohammed; enemy in the full sense of the word. He was advocating animosity against Mohammed, Islam, and the Moslems, and was advocating the killing of Mohammed. Therefore, he was not a peaceful man who was “murdered” as Andrew and is sources would want us to believe. He was enemy not only to Mohamed, but also to Islam and the Moslems. As such, the rules for dealing with Kab Alashraf are different from dealing with others who were living peacefully with the Moslems. As a very basic rule, you can deceive your enemies as a way for defeating them. What’s wrong with that? What would, on the other hand, be wrong is for Mohamed to teach his followers to use deception in their regular affairs among one another or when dealing with other nations who are at peace with them. That has never been the case, and it is totally against the teachings of Islam which teaches honesty and truthfulness. Mohamed is reported to have been asked once: “oh Messenger of Allah, is it possible that a believer be tightfisted, he said yes. Then he was asked, is it possible that a believer be a coward, he said yes. Then he was asked, is it possible that a believer be a liar, he said absolutely no.

    So, again, the key idea here is that Kab was an enemy, and therefore the rule for dealing with him was different. As a matter of fact, if killing the enemy is ok, why won’t deceiving him in order to kill him be also ok?!!! If killing your enemy is not ok, then of course deceiving him will be a debatable or arguable issue. I know Christianity says you should love your enemy, but unfortunately that does not answer the question about killing your enemy. Because the history of Christianity clearly shows that loving your enemy is separate from killing him.

    Now, why did Mohammed have enemies? This is a very important question, because when you know the answer and when you know the type of enemies Mohammed had, you will find it for the credit of Mohammed. As a messenger from God, Mohammed was preaching God’s word, and God’s guidance. The people who listened to his preaching found nothing wrong with it, but those in power found a direct threat on themselves. That is exactly the same reason why Jesus had enemies. It is all about the people in power feeling threatened by the message of the truth. The difference between Jesus and Mohamed, is that Jesus’ mission did not include a permission from God to fight his enemies. Mohammed, on the other hand, was in fact ordered by God to do so. Actually Mohammed lived for 13 years in Mecca before he was ordered to fight his enemies. During those 13 years Mohammed and his followers used only patience and supplication to Allah in response to the savage persecution by the unbelievers of Mecca.

    2) Allah advocating deception
    Allah saved Jesus from crucifixion by making it look as if they had in fact killed him. “Them” here refers to those who arranged and gathered to crucify Jesus. Now, whether or not we agree on calling this trick “deception”, apparently it was directed at Jesus’ enemies who wanted to crucify him, and was not directed at Jesus’ followers. Jesus’ followers were not affected by it at all because Jesus re-appeared to them three days after the event, and stayed with them for about forty days; I believe. So the only ones who were actually “deceived” where those who wanted to kill Jesus; they believed (and still do) that they had indeed killed him. So what is wrong in saving Jesus from his enemies who wanted to kill him even if it entailed making these enemies think that they had killed him when in fact they had not?!!

    Finally, I would admit that Mohamed advocated deception had he ever said something like this: “For if the truth of Allah, hath more abounded through my lie unto his glory: why yet am I also judged as a sinner?” (replace the word “Allah” with the word “God” and you get what St. Paul said in ROMAN 3:7).
    Wouldn’t you also agree with me that this is what should be called “deception”?

    Abdo

    July 22, 2008 at 11:27 am

  66. Abdo,

    Why did Mohamed need to kill his enemies? If he was a prophet in the line of Jesus, why not love his enemies? Why did Mohamed need to deceive his enemy to kill him if he had Allah on his side?

    The Bible would call Mohamed’s deception sin, and though it is not unlike some men in the Old Testament, there are always visible consequences for these actions. For instance, after deceiving their father into giving him Esau’s birthright and blessing, Jacob was forced to flee from his brother Esau and live in exile. King David killed a man (using deception) and committed adultery with his wife. It cost him a son and years of pain as Israel was torn by civil war and his own sons fighting and killing each other. Were there visible consequences to this sin? Or did it go unpunished and become as you have deemed it, an acceptable action given the situation?

    Why did Allah need to convince people that Jesus had died if he had the power to protect Jesus? How does this explain the fact that the disciples all said that Jesus had died and were willing to die for what they testified to? How do you explain that Jesus appeared to the disciples and told Thomas to touch the nail holes and the place where the spear pierced his side?

    I have been told on many occasions on this blog that the disciples, and not just Christ’s enemies, were also deceived by Jesus “appearing” to have died. So which is it? Were they deceived or not?

    All of the above questions must be answered satisfactorily to make your point.

    To answer the question you posed:

    The one thing wrong with God saving Jesus is that Jesus went to the cross willingly. He did not have his life taken from him, but willingly he chose to lay it down. This was prophesied of him and he was fulfilling the prophecy as well as God’s will. It was God’s plan all along for the Messiah to die, and was the reason Jesus came to earth as God incarnate.

    Lastly, the verse you quoted from Paul was quoted terribly out of context. Paul is making a hypothetical argument about personal responsibility, not one for deception. He poses a question saying “someone might argue”, then answers the question by saying these people will be deservedly condemned. Either you didn’t read the rest of the passage or this is blatant deception on your part.

    Andrew

    http://seekingtheface.wordpress.com

    Andrew

    August 4, 2008 at 6:34 pm

  67. […] See my other post: Allah: The God of The Quran and The Bible […]


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