Responding to Christianity's Critics

Re: Sin and atonement [Part – 5]

Here’s a post on quite a number of things related to the atonement and Christ’s passion. It is a reply to this article written by one Hasan. The author in fact has an entire series dedicated to questioning the Christian understanding of these concepts and having browsed through most of the articles in this series, I must commend him for thinking critically about the Christian scriptures but I should mention that the outcome leaves much to be desired. Unfortunately his resultant product suffers from severe mistakes and errors in logic which will become all too apparent the more one reads this article. That said, this article is long.

Unwilling Sacrifice:

Jesus, as we are so insistently told, offered himself voluntarily to God the Father and was made the scapegoat for the sins of all humanity, provided, of course, they believed in him. But when the time of acceptance of his wish approaches nigh and at last the glimmer of hope for sinful humanity is beginning to appear like the dawn of a new day, as we turn to Jesus expecting to observe his joy, his happiness and his ecstasy at this most eventful moment of human history, how profoundly disappointed and manifestly disillusioned we are. Instead of finding a Jesus impatiently awaiting the hour of jubilation what we see instead is a Jesus weeping and crying and praying and beseeching God the Father to take away the bitter cup of death from him. — Hasan

There are a few things that are incorrect with the above and before we can continue with the rest of the article we must first place things in the right perspective. The author claims that we are to be disillusioned by the fact that the Christ displayed such terror, such aversion even, to the events which would soon transpire. Starting from the end of the above citation and working our way up, we are treated to the author’s first mistake. He incorrectly identifies the cup which Christ was so reluctant to drink as the “bitter cup of death.” Now, to the author’s credit, the cup held out by the Father to his Son in one aspect truly was a bitter cup of death yet to term it merely as such betrays a fundamental ignorance of the realities of Gethsemane (as if the Saviour shrank back from mere death) and the agony of Jesus Christ. It is only such a profound misunderstanding that could ever lead one to be disappointed by Christ’s lack of a happy-go-lucky, uninhibitedly joyous disposition at the prospect of soon having to drink from the cup of God’s wrath. That, in fact, is the proper name for this cup and in simply naming it properly one begins to see the terror that ought to come with it. In other passages, this cup is described as follows:

“If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, the same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb.” — Rev. 14:9-10 KJV

From the above we understand that this cup is the very wrath of God, unmixed with pity, nor diluted by grace but it is the full measure of the anger of God against all manner of ungodliness. It is a punishment of unimaginable torment that is applied to the individual’s very soul. The imagery used in the Bible to describe the wrath of God is meant to illicit fear at the reality of hell and within this cup was contained the full payment, that is, the full wrath of God which was reserved for all those whom Christ voluntarily suffered for. Now knowing that the content of this cup was not merely death on a cross but rather the full anger, the full wrath, the full indignation of a holy God, what would one expect to feel?

At this point I will say that the author is being deceiving in his statements above because I can guarantee the reader that in reality, he believes that the terror which Christ felt in Gethsemane to be the appropriate response considering the circumstances. This is because, as a Muslim, he would agree that terror at being punished by God is the most appropriate emotion to feel. One might ask him whether a person should be terrified at the prospect of being subjected to punishment by God in hell or whether they should laugh it off and go on with their daily life feeling wholly indifferent? He would certainly agree with me that terror, weeping, crying, and praying would be the most appropriate course of action. If the same is true for the suffering of Christ on the cross, how then would he pretend that the reader should be disillusioned by the gospel narrative? Aversion is the most appropriate action to take and it would be absolutely disgraceful and an insult to God himself if Jesus had behaved anything like the author wished because it would betray a sincere lack of understanding as to what exactly was going on and would make light of the entire issue of God rightfully punishing sin. In the above quote, the author displays a very low view of God and would like us to make light of, and to merely gloss over the fact that God himself was about to judge the world in Christ. The individual who would be disillusioned by the response of Christ towards the wrath of God is not pious, rather he would that Christ had sinned by not conducting himself in the appropriate manner concerning what God was about to do in regards to sin.

Furthermore, the author seems to insinuate that seeing as the Christ displayed such terror at the coming agony, he was somehow involuntarily coerced into dying on the cross. I believe that Jesus undertook his suffering voluntarily but Hasan disagrees (on the basis that Jesus displayed such aversion to his suffering) so now we have to ask ourselves who in fact is correct? To be sure both our positions are attested to by scripture: that Jesus wasn’t especially excited at experiencing the wrath of God is recorded in Matt. 26:39, Luke 22:42, Mark 14:36 yet that Jesus voluntarily underwent his passion is recorded in Matt. 16:21-23, Matt. 26:53, John 10:17-18John 12:31-33 and in many more places throughout scripture. That said, perhaps the better question to ask would be whether one can both volunteer for a matter and yet feel aversion at the task, all at the same time?

Reason tells us that this is quite possible and one does not need to posit a hopeless contradiction between the two or opt for one scenario and thereby completely disregard the other. It is a simple fact that many people would be willing to give their lives for their loved ones, yet one doubts that they would be particularly excited by the thought of their suffering. During the hour of their agony, would it not be possible for them to wish that there was another way? If this is so, would it then put into question the fact that they voluntarily offered their life for their loved one? Of course the answer is no because the dread of suffering and the dedication to go through with the suffering are not mutually exclusive. Hasan however, would ask us to disregard all of the above and simply believe that Jesus was coerced into dying on the cross (nevermind his repeated claims to having come for just this purpose or his foreknowledge of the fact) because he was anything but ecstatic at the coming punishment. It goes without saying that this position is wholly unreasonable and does nothing to harmonize all the evidence that is presented (while my position does take into account all of the factors, his does not and largely ignores them altogether). One must remind the author that there is a time for everything (Ecc. 3:1-8) and at times, it is far more appropriate to display terror than to display joy.

Yet there is more to be said concerning Gethsemane. Up until now I have conducted my response as if the words “take this cup away from me” meant that Christ was asking to be saved and effectively skip his ordeal and that is not at all what I understand from this verse. To be sure enough, I sincerely believe that Jesus was in deep agony concerning the events which were to transpire—as he should have been for no other response was more appropriate—but I do not think that he was asking God if he could forgo drinking from the cup of his wrath seeing as to pay for the sins of his people was his entire reason for becoming man (Matt. 1:21)!

23 Jesus replied, “The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. 24 Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. […] 27 “Now my soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. 28 Father, glorify your name!” Then a voice came from heaven, “I have glorified it, and will glorify it again.” 29 The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him. 30 Jesus said, “This voice was for your benefit, not mine. 31 Now is the time for judgment on this world; now the prince of this world will be driven out. 32 And I, when I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all people to myself.” 33 He said this to show the kind of death he was going to die. — John 10:23-24, 27-33 NIV

Notice that in the above Christ derisively asks whether he should ask to be saved from the hour of suffering and then claims that he could not do so for the hour of his suffering was the very reason for why he was born. Even the analogy concerning the kernel of wheat shows that the Christ viewed his death as being absolutely necessary! So then in what manner are we to understand his request towards the Father in Gethsemane? Perhaps the following explains it best:

A third possibility is to take “this cup” as an image of punishment, as it is in the Old Testament. Rather than asking to get out of the torment of the cross, Jesus is looking forward to the time when the punishment for sin will be over and he will be restored to complete fellowship with the Father. Craig Blaising notes that Jesus applied Isaiah 53:12 to himself before going to the garden, and suggests that Isaiah 51:19-22 may hold the key to interpreting the desire to have the cup removed. In Isaiah, the cup of God’s wrath is taken away from the people after they have experienced it. They received the punishment in full, but afterwards the cup is removed and they experience the blessings of the Lord in the Kingdom. Rather than asking to avoid the crucifixion, Jesus is praying that after he “drinks from the cup of wrath,” he have that cup taken away so that he can enjoy fellowship again.

Blaising says:

The implication for Jesus’ prayer is this: As in this passage, where God will remove the cup of his wrath from his people after they have drunk it, so Jesus prays that the cup of God’s wrath for sin, which he drinks for all, will in the same way be removed from his hand by the Father after he has drunk it (335). — Reading Acts

This interpretation of the words of Christ is made all the more forceful when one understands that Jesus ushered his ministry by quoting from Isaiah (compare Isaiah 61:1-2 with Luke 4:16-21) and the fact that Jesus was looking forward to returning to his previous state of glory. The very glory that he shared together with the Father before the world was created (John 17:4-5)! If we comprehend things in this manner, then we would see that it fits in exactly with the punishment and blessing motif of Isaiah. Yet not only that, but it fits in perfectly with the hymn to Christ in Philippians 2:5-11. Once more abasement follows exultation and it is only after having been abased that Christ returns to his seat of glory. It is this return to glory that the Christ asks for.

It is said in the Old Testament that an imposter who attributes things to God which He had never said, would be hanged on a tree and die upon it an accursed death [(Deuteronomy 21:22–23)]. […] Jesus knew that if this happened, the Jews would celebrate with ecstasy and proclaim him to be an imposter whose falsehood had finally been proved beyond a shadow of doubt on the authority of the divine Scriptures. This was the reason why he was so anxious to escape the bitter cup of death; not out of cowardice but out of fear that his people would be misled and would fail to recognise his truth if he died upon the cross. — Hasan

Once more the author betrays his lack of understanding by implying that it was the cross which so terrified Christ rather than the unbridled wrath of God that he would soon experience. In fact, the author cannot support the above words through scripture because we have repeated instances wherein Christ plainly announces that he came into the world so as to become a sacrifice for sin and reconcile the world to God. The fact that Jewish law claims that whoever is hung on a tree is cursed poses no problem for the Christian because this is precisely what the Bible claims of Jesus (Galatians 3:13). We must understand that the wrath of God is the same as the curse of God and for Christ to accept this punishment is to accept the curse. It only follows that God would punish that which he has cursed. Yet the prophets themselves declared that the Messiah would in fact bear our sins upon himself and God would punish him for us all (Isaiah 53).

4 Surely he took up our pain
and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
stricken by him, and afflicted.
5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
and by his wounds we are healed.

[…]

10 Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the LORD makeshis life an offering for sin,

[…]

11 After he has suffered,
he will see the light of life and be satisfied;
by his knowledgemy righteous servant will justify many,
and he will bear their iniquities. — Isaiah 53:4-5; 10 NIV

The above words were written some 600 years before Christ yet describe the life and sacrifice of Jesus so perfectly. Contrary to the incredibly vague prophecies that Muslims have to read into the words of God in order to find Muhammad in the bible, the prophecies about Jesus are incredibly clear. I mean who else (more specifically, what other Jew) in the history of the world has it been claimed of that he died for the sins of others? Who else has it been claimed of that in his suffering and in the shedding of his blood would he reconcile the many to God? Notice that the text says that the individual would be pierced for our transgressions and by his punishment we would be healed. What other figure in the history of the world does the above describe if not Christ? This is certainly a problem that the Muslim, Jew and the world has to come to terms with given that at the very least, the above is dated hundreds of years before the birth of Jesus yet details his life and ministry so perfectly even to the point where it claims that the very nation to whom these things were revealed to would not believe it (Isaiah 53:1). I would encourage Hasan to read the chapter in full.

Who was Sacrificed?

One is compelled to wonder about the relationship of the man in Jesus with the inherited propensity to commit sin, common to all the progeny of Adam and Eve. At best one can bring oneself to believe that in the duality of the ‘Divine Son’ and the man occupying the same body, it was only the ‘Divine Son’ who was innocent. But what about the man living alongside him. […] This scenario will not be complete without presenting Jesus the ‘Son of God’, dying, not so unselfishly after all, for the sake of humanity but his prime concern might have been for his half brother, the man in him.— Ibid.

Again the reader is privy to Hasan’s lack of understanding in that Jesus did not inherit the propensity to sin seeing as it is passed through the father. The author goes on to posit a distinction within Christ between the man and the God and no such distinction can be made. There is only one Christ. Two natures in one person and not two persons in one person. Also given that we have established that the Christ was sinless, we need not concern ourselves with the author’s baseless conjectures.

The Dilemma of Jesus

‘Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachtani?’—which means, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’>

-Matthew 27:46

One must notice that it was not agony alone expressed in that cry but obviously there was mingled with it an element of surprise, bordering on horror. — Ibid.

It would seem that Hasan has once again displayed his lack of biblical knowledge. He claims that the Christ was somehow surprised by the events of the crucifixion, as if somehow things had gone horribly wrong and he had been deceived by God. To this end he quotes from Matt. 27:46 yet little does he know that those very words which Jesus spoke were to point his audience towards the truth that his crucifixion was foretold in the Bible! The words, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” are actually the opening line of Psalm 22—written hundreds of years before the birth of Christ. Before I continue it must be mentioned that the Bible hasn’t always been neatly divided into numbered chapters and verses etc. so it often occurred that entire sections were known by their opening lines and this is exactly what we find in Psalm 22. It contains specific prophecies about Christ and the circumstances surrounding his death, both his abasement and subsequent exultation. At this point, it would prove worthwhile for us to take a look at this prophetic psalm:

Psalm 22:7 and 8
(7) All they that see me, they mock me. They hurl insults shaking their heads saying,
(8) “He trusts in the Lord; let the Lord rescue him. Let him deliver him, since he delights in him.”

Matthew 27:41-43
(41) In the same way the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders mocked him.
(42) “He saved others,” they said, “but he can’t save himself! He’s the king of Israel! Let him come down now from the cross, and we will believe in him.
(43) He trusts in God. Let God rescue him now if he wants him, for he said, ‘I am the Son of God.”

—————

Psalm 22:16-18
(16) Dogs have surrounded me, a band of evil men has encircled me, they have pierced my hands and my feet.
(17) I can count all my bones; people stare and gloat over me.
(18) They divide my garments among them and cast lots for my clothing.

John 19:23-24

23 When the soldiers crucified Jesus, they took his clothes, dividing them into four shares, one for each of them, with the undergarment remaining. This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom. 24 “Let’s not tear it,” they said to one another. “Let’s decide by lot who will get it.”

The Psalmist then goes on to describe the eventual triumph of the Lord and how the one who previously suffered will sing God’s praise. From the above it is more than obvious that Hasan has profoundly misunderstood the atonement and the suffering of Christ.

More can always be said on the subjects of forgiveness and/or the atonement.

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25 responses

  1. “So then in what manner are we to understand his request towards the Father in Gethsemane?”

    I never thought much about this. Huh.

    Good job…again!

    January 13, 2011 at 12:08 AM

    • Thanks Eden. I know that feeling, and to be honest there are many things that I don’t think much about until someone else whether they be christian/muslim/atheist/whatever points it out and makes me raise an eyebrow.

      January 13, 2011 at 4:13 PM

  2. First of all I must clarify my position over Jesus Christ. By no means, I mean to belittle him, I merely am understanding the whole ‘Sin and atonement’ belief in logical perspective.

    I must clear that I respect Christians, I do not intent to hurt anyone’s feelings, I am a student and want to engage in an intellectual debate over the whole concept of God.
    ==============================================
    If you have read my series of articles, you will conclude that I am analyzing crucifixion in logical perspectives. One is entitled to his/her beliefs, but logic defies what Christians put forward. Many contradictions to crucifixion itself appear.

    Crucifixion is just one attribute, the whole logical definition of God almighty changes if we ‘logically’ analyze Christian doctrine.

    Let me give you an insight over Psalm 22. There is contradiction among Bible scholars on the whole ‘being prophetic to crucifixion’ concept. One of the researchers claim

    The linguistic and thematic analysis demonstrate that it is possible to derive a plausible explanation for the significant difference between the Jewish and standard Christian perspectives and, thereby, affirm the validity of the Jewish understanding of Psalms 22. The Christian perspective appears to have been fashioned with hindsight, i.e., knowing what the narratives in the New Testament have described, Psalms 22, perhaps enhanced through editing, was a close enough passage to be claimed as a template for the prophetic description of the crucifixion that would take place a millennium after these words were recorded. This assessment is supported by the fact that, Psalms 22:17[16], perhaps the most important passage relative to the crucifixion, is not referenced by any of the authors of the New Testament.

    Now moving on towards the alleged sacrifice,

    Reason tells us that this is quite possible and one does not need to posit a hopeless contradiction between the two or opt for one scenario and thereby completely disregard the other. It is a simple fact that many people would be willing to give their lives for their loved ones, yet one doubts that they would be particularly excited by the thought of their suffering. During the hour of their agony, would it not be possible for them to wish that there was another way? If this is so, would it then put into question the fact that they voluntarily offered their life for their loved one? Of course the answer is no because the dread of suffering and the dedication to go through with the suffering are not mutually exclusive

    It should be remembered that Jesus Christ is a ‘son of God’ (in Christian theology) and contradiction is something one cannot attribute towards God. I fail to understand it logically, if the purpose of Jesus’ life was to get sacrificed for humanity, he would have had known it even before he was sent to earth. The ‘bitter cup’ he is asking to avoid is something he and God the Father would have been waiting for all this time, isn’t it? It wasn’t just a mere co-incidence that Jesus realized it is going to be painful on the cross?

    Now the last cry on the cross. There are many verses of Bible that Glorify Lord the Father, rather Jesus chose to utter those where he is calling his Lord and inquiring why have the Lord forsaken him at this hour? Even if it was a prophecy, it should be for a reason Jesus cried out like that?

    The answer to this is simple, as I have mentioned in my article, Jesus knew that if he dies on the cross, the Jews will be firm in believing Jesus was (God forbid) an impostor. Majority of Muslims (unlike me), to avoid this dilemma believe that Jesus was taken alive from the cross and that he disappeared into the clouds. Magical as it may seem, it is again logic defying and in contradiction to God almighty and his nature.

    Christians on the other hand, believe that Jesus died on the cross for the sins of mankind, but this again firms the Jew belief that Christ was (God forbid) an impostor. At this point I would like to quote from the Holy scriptures of Qura’an, this dilemma is in total agreement with the following Qura’anic verses

    And their saying, ‘We did kill the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah;’ whereas they slew him not, nor crucified him, but he was made to appear to them like one crucified; and those who differ therein are certainly in a state of doubt about it; they have no definite knowledge thereof, but only follow a conjecture; and they did not convert this conjecture into a certainty;
    —-Al-Nisa’ Chapter 4 : Verse 158

    The only way out of this dilemma is for Jesus to come out from this ‘ALIVE’ for if he doesn’t, his own and his God’s authenticity is at stakes here. God promissed Jesus that he will show him the miracle that also happened with Jonah, the Prophet of the fish. That promise cannot be fulfilled if Jesus died. The miracle was that Jonah came out of there alive, so did Jesus, contrary to everyone’s belief.

    I however, am a firm believe that Jesus lived after crucifixion and migrated towards Afghanistan and Kashmir (evidence suggest it), because he had to go towards the other tribes of Israel (which migrated from Israel after Babylonian invasions).

    Not only does it glorifies Jesus Christ, it also glorifies God almighty and it is completely logical.

    January 13, 2011 at 9:24 PM

    • Thanks for the comment Hasan, I’ll reply soon.

      January 14, 2011 at 9:22 AM

  3. Sorry about the late reply. You’ll note that your points were fairly simple to respond to yet whenever I sat down to write a response, I felt overwhelmingly lethargic…anyway getting on to the response:

    Let me give you an insight over Psalm 22. There is contradiction among Bible scholars on the whole ‘being prophetic to crucifixion’ concept. One of the researchers claim

    The linguistic and thematic analysis demonstrate that it is possible to derive a plausible explanation for the significant difference between the Jewish and standard Christian perspectives and, thereby, affirm the validity of the Jewish understanding of Psalms 22. The Christian perspective appears to have been fashioned with hindsight, i.e., knowing what the narratives in the New Testament have described, Psalms 22, perhaps enhanced through editing, was a close enough passage to be claimed as a template for the prophetic description of the crucifixion that would take place a millennium after these words were recorded. This assessment is supported by the fact that, Psalms 22:17[16], perhaps the most important passage relative to the crucifixion, is not referenced by any of the authors of the New Testament.

    There is in fact no contradiction present and even in your quoted text you fail to prove this to be true. The definition of a contradiction does not square with what the author aims to assert above. Furthermore, the author implies that Christians may have edited Psalm 22 in order to make it conform to Christ’s crucifixion. Evidently the author possesses no knowledge concerning the matter because the Jewish community prior to the advent of the Christian era translated the Psalm exactly like Christians do today and unlike baseless claims that Muslims make of edits in the Bible, we actually have proof of this fact. Please read the version of Psalm 22 found in the Septuagint. So your entire point has been refuted because Christians made no edits to the text.

    I fail to understand it logically, if the purpose of Jesus’ life was to get sacrificed for humanity, he would have had known it even before he was sent to earth.

    Hasan, that is precisely what you find in the Bible. Jesus has always known that he came to earth in order to pay for our sin.

    32 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is the bread that comes down from heaven and gives life to the world. […] 35 Then Jesus declared, “I am the bread of life. Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever believes in me will never be thirsty. 36 But as I told you, you have seen me and still you do not believe. 37 All those the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. 38 For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. 39 And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all those he has given me, but raise them up at the last day. 40 For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day.” — John 6:32-33; 35-40

    From the above you see that Jesus taught that he knew his purpose before even coming to earth. This knowledge of his purpose then lead him to come down to earth. Given the above, it’s clear that your point has been refuted.

    Now the last cry on the cross. There are many verses of Bible that Glorify Lord the Father, rather Jesus chose to utter those where he is calling his Lord and inquiring why have the Lord forsaken him at this hour? Even if it was a prophecy, it should be for a reason Jesus cried out like that?

    He was pointing towards the fact that his crucifixion was prophesied by the prophets. The particular section he was pointing to began with that line and hence he quoted the title so as to point to that section. In the same way as we quote the title “Psalm 22” to point to this Psalm, Christ did the same except back then it wasn’t known as Psalm 22 but rather by the line by which it starts. Again, the point you bring up is not at all troubling to the Christian understanding of things.

    Christians on the other hand, believe that Jesus died on the cross for the sins of mankind, but this again firms the Jew belief that Christ was (God forbid) an impostor.

    In the above you commit a ruse that I should not have let you get away with when I was writing the article but seeing as you have brought this up again, I will use this opportunity to challenge your view. You claim that Christ being hung on the cross it that which proved to the Jews that he was an impostor but that is patently false. According to Jewish law, one is an impostor if that which they had said did not come to pass. Well in the case of Christ he claimed that he would be crucified (which happened), and he claimed that he would rise again on the third day—and this happened as well. The Prophets claimed that God would make him a curse and punish him therefore for the sins of the world (this also happened) and that he would be crucified (this also happened). God himself testified that Jesus was speaking the truth by raising him from the dead and therefore according to Jewish law Christ is not an impostor.

    Now, you end your comment with a citation from the Qur’an yet if we read it it’s plain to see that it goes against your very point. The citation itself claims that Christ wasn’t crucified while you clearly believe that he was and write as if the Qur’an agreed with your belief. That is deceiving Hasan and when one has to deceive in order to prove the truth of their religion then one must ask themselves if their religion contained any truth in the first place—and I would think not.

    January 16, 2011 at 9:47 PM

    • Here I will just explain the reference of the Qura’an since we already have the debate of the whole crucifixion starting on the reply I posted to your article. Because I feel our debate is spreading up, we need to organize it in any one thread (if it is OK with you)

      Let me clarify two things here:

      You claim that Christ being hung on the cross it that which proved to the Jews that he was an impostor but that is patently false. According to Jewish law, one is an impostor if that which they had said did not come to pass.

      I said if someone ‘died’ on the CROSS not ‘hung’ huge difference there, I shouldn’t tell you the difference between ‘passing out’ and ‘dying’. Jesus didn’t die on the cross at all, enough research has been done on the subject, evidence suggests that he passed out on the cross, when it was time to break his leg there were cries to spare them as they ‘thought’ he was already dead. The soldier poked the side of Jesus’ body and blood and water rushed out, evidence that his heart was still pumping. If he ‘died’ on the cross. When he was brought down and rested in a cave, there were secret comings and goings in the cave, ointments being applied to his body. The question is, do they apply life saving medicines on the body of a deceased human being?

      Now, you end your comment with a citation from the Qur’an yet if we read it it’s plain to see that it goes against your very point. The citation itself claims that Christ wasn’t crucified while you clearly believe that he was and write as if the Qur’an agreed with your belief. That is deceiving Hasan and when one has to deceive in order to prove the truth of their religion then one must ask themselves if their religion contained any truth in the first place—and I would think not.

      I assumed you know Jewish laws, to complete the ‘process’ of crucifixion, the person should ‘die’ on the cross which as I explained above didn’t happen at all. While the Jews were jubilant that they crucified Jesus Christ, it was made to appear that they succeeded (because Jesus passed out), while they did not. What is deceiving in this argument? Qura’an stands true in this regard, Jesus was taken alive from the cross (unconscious), he then healed after three days and woke up (alive, never arriving purgatory), hence God stands true in his promise, it was the same miracle that was with Prophet Jonah. What is more compelling is the fact that even Jesus’ disciples (except for few who were around him all the time) thought Jesus is dead. When he woke up again, he had to travel under the cover of darkness, therefore avoiding the armies.

      When his disciples saw him, they thought it was his Ghost, but Jesus denied and asked them to feel him, he said he is still ‘flesh and bones’ and to prove his point he asked them to give him bread to eat and wine to drink. Then he had to migrate out of Israel towards the ‘lost sheep’ of Israel (the lost tribes of Israel) which were by that time, settled in Afghanistan and Kashmir.

      In the end, God stood out as a winner and He conveyed His victory to us through the Qura’anic verses I mentioned before.

      January 16, 2011 at 11:17 PM

  4. I said if someone ‘died’ on the CROSS not ‘hung’ huge difference there, I shouldn’t tell you the difference between ‘passing out’ and ‘dying’.

    So you are saying that according to Jewish law, if an individual died on the cross it showed him to be an impostor, right? Well then I must reiterate the fact that you have committed a ruse my friend. For one thing the Deuteronomy text which you cite in order to justify your approach quite clearly says that the individual who is hung on a pole has become a curse. So it has nothing to do with dying or passing out and in fact by your very argument you affirm the Christian position that Christ had become a curse by being hung on the cross. The matter of being an impostor becomes irrelevant because the text never claimed that someone who spoke falsely about God had to be hanged. That is a Muslim interpolation that is not present in the text. If it is then please show me where the law of Moses says that the impostor has to be hanged. Either way, your point cannot stand.

    Now you have consistently brought forth the swoon argument and I did nothing to refute it because I did not find it entirely crucial to our discussion but seeing as it has now become relevant, let us now touch on the subject. You make many points or rather conjectures concerning the crucifixion and I would like for you to take a few minutes of your time and follow this debate between Josh McDowell and Ahmed Deedat. Mr. Deedat uses the swoon theory to try and prove his points but his points are then easily refuted. While I would love for you to watch the entire debate but seeing as you are probably a very busy person, I have simply included the sections relevant to our discussion. Anyway I must say that you’ll see that your points have all been addressed and refuted.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eP7DEdeojtQ&feature=related <—start at 5:00

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=csbsoqXtM1U&feature=related <—and follow it with this one here please.

    I assumed you know Jewish laws, to complete the ‘process’ of crucifixion, the person should ‘die’ on the cross which as I explained above didn’t happen at all.

    The above is untrue. For one thing, crucifixion is not part of the Jewish law. The Jews did not crucify anyone it was the Romans who did and in fact crucifixion did not exist until the Romans had invented it. Furthermore, you change the definition of what crucifixion means. It is the act of being hung on the cross (in accordance to Roman procedures) and you would change this to mean the act of dying on a cross. Whether one dies or not is irrelevant seeing as crucifixion simply means to be attached to the cross in the fashion carried out by the Romans. You’ll note that in the youtube link the speaker talks about Flavious’ friends who were crucified for a short period of time after which Flavius was able to secure their release. Two out of the three died and so would you say that the third individual had never been crucified at all? Clearly he was and thus even you understand that crucifixion does not refer to death but simply to being hung on the cross. Once more the Qur’anic verse says that he was never crucified—not that the crucifixion was incomplete. Interesting enough Flavius himself was a Jew and he used the term crucified even for the Individual who was rescued in time and so this refutes your argument that the Jews understood crucifixion to mean dying on the cross and not being hung on the cross.

    Concerning the sign of Jonah it seems that you must bastardize my scripture in order to prove your point. Before we continue, let us actually see what Jesus had in fact said:

    “An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale, so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth”.
    Matthew 12.39-40.

    The sign of Jonah relates to the length of time and not whether Christ would be alive or dead during that time. Now, you make unproven conjecture after conjecture because according to the bible God was glorified by Christ’s sacrifice. If you disagree, then can you please tell me what is being spoken of in Isaiah 53? That is a clear prophecy concerning the sacrifice of Jesus.

    Anyway you make quite a few conjectures that easily fall apart when one actually goes to the sources of the matter and see how the ancients did things. The Qur’an in fact doesn’t agree with you and you once more have to bastardize your scriptures in order to prove your point. If crucifixion is incomplete if the person does not die, then what about being stabbed? Is that incomplete if the person does not die? What about being punched? Is it also incomplete if the individual does not die? Clearly whether the person dies has no bearing on the act itself and once more you have had to use a ruse in order to prove your point.

    January 18, 2011 at 8:17 PM

    • So you are saying that according to Jewish law, if an individual died on the cross it showed him to be an impostor, right? Well then I must reiterate the fact that you have committed a ruse my friend. For one thing the Deuteronomy text which you cite in order to justify your approach quite clearly says that the individual who is hung on a pole has become a curse. So it has nothing to do with dying or passing out and in fact by your very argument you affirm the Christian position that Christ had become a curse by being hung on the cross. The matter of being an impostor becomes irrelevant because the text never claimed that someone who spoke falsely about God had to be hanged. That is a Muslim interpolation that is not present in the text. If it is then please show me where the law of Moses says that the impostor has to be hanged. Either way, your point cannot stand.

      It seems you aren’t up to grab the ‘logic’ of the term ‘being hanged’. What is the purpose of ‘hanging’ an individual? To let him live or die? If he was hung till death, that was a curse, what’s the curse in it if he was taken from it alive?

      During the times of Abraham, ‘cursed’ people were thrown into fire, the people of Abraham did the same with Abraham, but the fire didn’t harm him at all. Was he cursed? If you search curcifixion, it will be defined as an ancient method of painful execution in which the condemned person is tied or nailed to a large wooden cross, and left to hang “until dead”, if then you still insist that Jesus died on the cross then you are one of those Qura’an talks about, on whom it is made to appear he was crucified, while in reality he wasn’t.

      Now you have consistently brought forth the swoon argument and I did nothing to refute it because I did not find it entirely crucial to our discussion but seeing as it has now become relevant, let us now touch on the subject. You make many points or rather conjectures concerning the crucifixion and I would like for you to take a few minutes of your time and follow this debate between Josh McDowell and Ahmed Deedat. Mr. Deedat uses the swoon theory to try and prove his points but his points are then easily refuted. While I would love for you to watch the entire debate but seeing as you are probably a very busy person, I have simply included the sections relevant to our discussion. Anyway I must say that you’ll see that your points have all been addressed and refuted.

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eP7DEdeojtQ&feature=related <—start at 5:00

      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=csbsoqXtM1U&feature=related <—and follow it with this one here please.

      I do not follow Ahmed Deedat, as I mentioned earlier, I am an Ahmadi Muslim, you can visit http://www.alislam.org and find out who we are and what we believe in. If you want our point of view about crucifixion here is the leader of Ahmadiyya Muslim community answering a question put forward by a Catholic priest


      Concerning the sign of Jonah it seems that you must bastardize my scripture in order to prove your point. Before we continue, let us actually see what Jesus had in fact said:

      “An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale, so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth”.
      Matthew 12.39-40.

      The sign of Jonah relates to the length of time and not whether Christ would be alive or dead during that time. Now, you make unproven conjecture after conjecture because according to the bible God was glorified by Christ’s sacrifice. If you disagree, then can you please tell me what is being spoken of in Isaiah 53? That is a clear prophecy concerning the sacrifice of Jesus.

      Lenght of time? What was the ‘sign’ that happened with Jonah? He came out ‘alive’, is it me adultering your scriptures, or you don’t understand what the scriptures are saying? Like I said somewhere that Bible has been altered, many contradictions are found within the bible itself. I will make a list and provide it to you some time.

      Anyway you make quite a few conjectures that easily fall apart when one actually goes to the sources of the matter and see how the ancients did things. The Qur’an in fact doesn’t agree with you and you once more have to bastardize your scriptures in order to prove your point. If crucifixion is incomplete if the person does not die what about being stabbed? Is that incomplete if the person does not die? What about being punched? Is it incomplete if the individual does not die Clearly whether the person dies has no bearing on the act itself and once more you have had to use a ruse in order to prove your point.

      The fact that you are in denial has nothing to do with my ‘logical’ conjectures. I understand you are defending your beliefs, but one must not become illogical in order to do so. Again I do not mean any offense towards Christianity.

      Like I said, the sign of Jonah isn’t shown until Christ comes back alive, I have briefed you about crucifixion and the punishment of ‘curse’. Jesus’ glory isn’t in dying on the cross, neither is God’s.

      You should be interested in viewing a non-Muslim research done by bbc

      January 18, 2011 at 9:52 PM

  5. It seems you aren’t up to grab the ‘logic’ of the term ‘being hanged’. What is the purpose of ‘hanging’ an individual? To let him live or die? If he was hung till death, that was a curse, what’s the curse in it if he was taken from it alive?

    It isn’t a matter of understanding your logic, rather it is a matter of understanding the text, and now let us once more look at the text in question:

    22 If someone guilty of a capital offense is put to death and their body is exposed on a pole, 23 you must not leave the body hanging on the pole overnight. Be sure to bury it that same day, because anyone who is hung on a pole is under God’s curse. You must not desecrate the land the LORD your God is giving you as an inheritance. — Deut. 21:22-23

    Notice that the individual does not die on the pole but is executed (most likely through stoning) and then his body is exposed on a pole, they should not be left hanging overnight. Let us understand that crucifixion did not exist in the time of Moses hence the individual would not die through being hung on a pole but the death refers to the regular manner that guilty individuals were executed—stoning. So according to the text the individual is dead before he is hung. This practice was fairly common seeing as King Saul suffered a similar fate (that is, his corpse being exposed after death) and the purpose was to shame the individual even after death. Once more when we look at what the sources actually say we find that they are in opposition to what you claim.

    During the times of Abraham, ‘cursed’ people were thrown into fire, the people of Abraham did the same with Abraham, but the fire didn’t harm him at all. Was he cursed? If you search curcifixion, it will be defined as an ancient method of painful execution in which the condemned person is tied or nailed to a large wooden cross, and left to hang “until dead”, if then you still insist that Jesus died on the cross then you are one of those Qura’an talks about, on whom it is made to appear he was crucified, while in reality he wasn’t.

    Baseless conjecture. Where are your sources outside of the Qur’an—a document that was written thousands of years after Abraham had lived. At the very least, the biblical accounts can be attested to by the vestiges of the cultures in question but all that you have are words from an individual who was not alive during this time and no amount of cultural proof. One is only convinced if they accept the Qur’an to be from God—other than that, it has no level of persuasion. Contrary to this, the biblical accounts are routinely attested to by archeological findings.

    In the above you pass off a definition of the word crucifixion with a description of its outcome and that is deceiving (but to your credit, often the definition is mingled with the description of its outcome but that is incorrect). “To kill” entails that the individual is dead but “to crucify” simply means to be pinned on the cross. Someone cannot be killed yet live at the same time but an individual can certainly be crucified without dying. This point of mine is actually reinforced when you appreciate the fact that Flavius, the first century Jew, used it in the same manner when he spoke of his friend who had been crucified yet did not die. Take note that an individual who was particularly close to the events, who lived in the same thought-world as those doing the crucifixion would in fact know what he was talking about and clearly he is contradicting you.

    I do not follow Ahmed Deedat, as I mentioned earlier, I am an Ahmadi Muslim, you can visit http://www.alislam.org and find out who we are and what we believe in.

    Hasan, I didn’t ask you if you followed him but only told you to follow the links I gave you because he raised up all the same points you did and they were easily refuted. Just because one is a Catholic priest does not mean that they are an expert in the practices of 1st century Jews and Romans. That said, I gave you a link to someone who actually did the research and showed that the swoon theory was baseless.

    Lenght of time? What was the ‘sign’ that happened with Jonah? He came out ‘alive’, is it me adultering your scriptures, or you don’t understand what the scriptures are saying? Like I said somewhere that Bible has been altered, many contradictions are found within the bible itself. I will make a list and provide it to you some time.

    Let us please take a look at the scripture to see which one of us is bastardizing scripture:

    “An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign shall be given to it except the sign of the prophet Jonah. For as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the whale, so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth”.
    Matthew 12.39-40.

    Notice that Jesus says that they’ll only receive the sign of Jonah and then goes on to explain what the sign was. For Jonah was in the Whale 3 days and 3 nights and so will Jesus be entombed for 3 days and 3 nights. Is this not what we read above? And yes, Jesus does come out alive because he is resurrected, so there is no problem with the Christian understanding. The Christian understanding makes sense of the entire bible, Isaiah 53 and all other prophecies spoken by the prophets. You say that Jesus must have been alive the entire time but Isaiah 53 quite clearly says that he was going to be dead and then live again. Jesus himself is recorded to have said that he would die and live again. While the Christian understanding makes sense of all the factors, yours does not.

    You may say that the bible has been altered but the historical truth is that the true message of the bible has always been available. Furthermore, you cannot even prove that any Christian doctrine was at all changed. If you had taken care to examine the matter at all you would have noticed that the argument which was always made by the Christian community vs. the heretics was that the heretics were always teaching something new and that there was no record nor could anyone ever remember the Christian faith to have been anything like what the heretics claimed. In fact, no classical heretic ever claimed that their views were what had always been held by the Christian community, rather their claims were that the Christian community had misunderstood the true faith and hence they were the first to restore it. They didn’t claim Apostolic succession.

    That said, the Qur’an itself has been altered and Muslims themselves have documented this and were not seen as heretics during their time.

    The fact that you are in denial has nothing to do with my ‘logical’ conjectures. I understand you are defending your beliefs, but one must not become illogical in order to do so. Again I do not mean any offense towards Christianity.

    You do nothing to refute my points. Please focus on my argument and show why it is illogical instead of merely making this claim.

    Now the video was entertaining but the majority of scholars do not believe in this myth that is expounded by that youtube video. People will always disagree for various reasons but in cases such as this, it is better to go with the majority opinion. Most atheist scholars admit that Jesus was dead and find no basis to support the swoon theory and as such if it is the non-Muslim and non-theist opinion that we’re looking for, then Christianity once more wins out.

    January 18, 2011 at 11:48 PM

  6. At last I must once again reiterate that your exposition of the Qur’anic verse is deceiving and that it in fact does not agree with you. Let us at this time look at the verse again:

    And their saying, ‘We did kill the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah;’ whereas they slew him not, nor crucified him, but he was made to appear to them like one crucified; and those who differ therein are certainly in a state of doubt about it; they have no definite knowledge thereof, but only follow a conjecture; and they did not convert this conjecture into a certainty;
    —-Al-Nisa’ Chapter 4 : Verse 158

    If you read the verse carefully, you’ll note that the speaker is actually making two points as it relates to the crucifixion of Christ, (1) they did not kill Christ and (2) they did not crucify Christ (“whereas they slew him not, nor crucified him”). Now you claim that the verse is simply saying that they did not kill Christ. If what you say is true, we should then be able to insert the word “kill” for both statements and not do damage to the verse as a whole. Let us do so now and see what we get:

    And their saying, ‘We did kill the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah;’ whereas they killed him not, nor killed him…
    —-Al-Nisa’ Chapter 4 : Verse 158

    The above does not make sense because while by the use of the word “nor” we realize that the author was making a distinction between the two statements (such that they are different things and not the same), yet if we are to understand the term “crucified” in the way you define it (and therefore interchangeable with the word “kill”) and if as such one should be able to edit the text in the above manner and still retain the intended meaning, then the text should still make sense. Yet above we clearly see that the text no longer makes sense. Now if we are to understand the text in the manner in which I understand it, that is, that the author is making two claims: (1) relating to the fact that Jesus was not killed and (2) that he was not crucified then the text makes perfect sense. In light of the above I must once again accuse you of bastardizing your own scriptures in order to try to win the argument. I suppose that you can see the problem with the claims of the Qur’an given that history is unanimous in the fact that Christ was crucified. Seeing as the Qur’an made a blunder on this account, Muslims such as yourself have sought to get around this through various interpretations such as that of your own but these are not true to the words of the Qur’an. Suffice to say, the Qur’an clearly is wrong and the Muslim position is one of error.

    January 19, 2011 at 8:57 PM

    • f you read the verse carefully, you’ll note that the speaker is actually making two points as it relates to the crucifixion of Christ, (1) they did not kill Christ and (2) they did not crucify Christ (“whereas they slew him not, nor crucified him”). Now you claim that the verse is simply saying that they did not kill Christ. If what you say is true, we should then be able to insert the word “kill” for both statements and not do damage to the verse as a whole. Let us do so now and see what we get:

      And their saying, ‘We did kill the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah;’ whereas they killed him not, nor killed him…
      —-Al-Nisa’ Chapter 4 : Verse 158

      The above does not make sense because while by the use of the word “nor” we realize that the author was making a distinction between the two statements (such that they are different things and not the same)

      You fail to understand the whole concept of crucifixion, it is a cruse, death of humiliation, a symbol of punishment / capital punishment while slaying someone can either be in battle or personal combat. Why is it that you have to twist the facts around, please do your research on ‘crucifixion’. Based on these interpretations it will become

      And their saying, ‘We did kill the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah;’ whereas they killed him not, nor punished/cursed him…. Is it too hard to get this?

      January 19, 2011 at 11:18 PM

      • Hasan, the above is a blatantly different definition than that which you had initially proposed. Yet either way it does not matter. Jewish law held it that if someone was hung on a pole, he would then become a curse. The very fact that you admit Jesus to have been hung on the cross means that he had become a curse. Be that as it may, it is more than obvious that you are twisting the meaning of crucifixion in order to try to win this argument but anyone can see that your arguments are deceiving and fail to prove your point.

        Notice that if we go by your new definitions then Allah claims that the Jews didn’t curse Jesus nor punish him and neither did they humiliate him. The simple truth is that they did do all those things. Look up the references to Jesus in the Talmud, they are blasphemous and as such they have cursed him. History tells us that Jesus was whipped, stripped, beaten and mocked and therefore that means that he was punished and humiliated. Once more even with the new definitions you have proposed it is easy to show that the Qur’an is in fact in error (once again). I must reiterate that you are being deceiving in your arguments Hasan.

        January 19, 2011 at 11:43 PM

      • Notice that if we go by your new definitions then Allah claims that the Jews didn’t curse Jesus nor punish him and neither did they humiliate him. The simple truth is that they did do all those things. Look up the references to Jesus in the Talmud, they are blasphemous and as such they have cursed him

        And yet the pope says its not the Jews. Well that’s a completely different topic.

        The point is, you really do not understand the point of being cursed. If Jesus was to die In front of his disciples then their faith must have been shattered, they would have had believed the Jews that they ‘did’ curse him. The Jewish blasphemy of Christ is ‘limited’ to them ONLY, you don’t think Jesus was a criminal, I don’t think he was, infact every one except the Jews think he was a pious man.

        However, if he was to die on the cross then all the Jewish allegations about him will be true.

        March 7, 2011 at 7:38 PM

      • And yet the pope says its not the Jews.

        Once again Hasan, you are wrong. You commit the same mistake as our friend Amin and as such my reply to them also corrects your own misunderstanding.

        The point is, you really do not understand the point of being cursed. If Jesus was to die In front of his disciples then their faith must have been shattered, they would have had believed the Jews that they ‘did’ curse him. The Jewish blasphemy of Christ is ‘limited’ to them ONLY, you don’t think Jesus was a criminal, I don’t think he was, infact every one except the Jews think he was a pious man.

        No Hasan, it would be you that doesn’t understand the point of being cursed especially given the fact that this very humiliation was prophesied over 700 years before Christ’s birth. But let’s deal with what you have written first. If you had read the biblical account properly, you would see that the faith of the disciples was in fact shattered (Luke 24) and only an appearance of the risen Christ himself would restore their faith. The Messiah whom they had hoped in died the pitiful death of a common criminal. As the Bible had foretold, the Christ would die (Isaiah 53:8) and the people would consider him to be cursed by God (Isaiah 53:4). Yet contrary to their judgement, the Christ was actually dying for the sins of the world (Isaiah 53:5-6) and after being dead (Isaiah 53:8-9) he would live again and through his death justify the many (Isaiah 53:10-12). Yet the prophecy clearly says that the very nation who would experience these events would not believe it (Isaiah 53:1). So no, the death of Christ was quite necessary as an atoning sacrifice for my sin, your sins, and that of the rest of the world. In fact, it is only through Christ’s death and ressurection that Jewish men and women came into a new and wholly fulfilling relationship with the God of Israel himself.

        March 8, 2011 at 12:25 AM

      • …was in fact shattered (Luke 24) and only an appearance of the risen Christ himself would restore their faith. The Messiah whom they had hoped in died the pitiful death of a common criminal.

        You don’t realize the ‘risen’ Christ was only the HUMAN Christ (hence made God) because it wasn’t anything but a MIRACLE to survive crucifixion. Jesus asked his disciples for Food and water, asked them to feel him as he is the same ‘FLESH AND BONES’.

        Is it really God’s way to ‘MURDER’ a pious man for the sins of others? Not my God. This rising of the Christ was a miracle and the effect of this was so much on the imagination of his disciples that when he left, he was made a God.

        Also, please notice that Christ had to leave to find the other ‘Lost sheep of Israel’ after the Judas incident, it was wise of him to leave WITHOUT informing anyone because the regime was stretched out over continents and had Naval power too.

        March 8, 2011 at 1:36 AM

      • No, surviving a crucifixion is not a miracle. There have been individuals who have survived crucifixions and it is quite certain that the disciples of Christ were aware of such cases without supposing that these people were gods as well. The claim isn’t that Christ lived through the crucifixion, no. He died and then rose back to life and that my friend, is a miracle. To prove that he not only arose spiritually but bodily as well, Jesus ate in front of his disciples, yes. What problem do you have with Christ having flesh and bones, this in no way shows that he isn’t God. The disciples believed Christ to be God because during his ministry, he expected to be worshiped as God, went about talking and acting as if he were God and then guess what? He died. That would be the end for any false prophet yet God vindicated Christ by raising him from the dead and showing to his disciples that what this man said was in fact true. That when this individual claimed to have all the prerogatives of God, that when he claimed to be greater than Abraham and to have existed before the world was created, that when he claimed that he would judge every soul on the last day, that when he said that it was right to worship him in the same manner that the Father was worshiped—all this was true. You see, a false prophet can make all these claims and can even trick individuals with signs and wonders, but when they die it is all over. If Christ merely made these claims while he was alive it wouldn’t serve that great of a purpose. But the fact that after saying these things he died, and then was raised back to life showed conclusively that God vindicated this man’s claims to deity. This is why it is the case that when Christ rose from the dead he was worshiped by his followers:

        “Suddenly Jesus met them. “Greetings,” he said. They came to him, clasped his feet and worshiped him.” — Matthew 28:9 NIV

        You would think that if Jesus weren’t God he’d at least tell his disciples what really happened instead of continuing on with this charade. In fact, if this were the case, maybe Allah could have cleared up the matter for them instead of deceiving his own followers like this. The fact of the matter is that you believe in a deity who would deceive even those very individuals who believed in the person whom he had sent and that is cruel. Sacrifice is not akin to murder, especially when Jesus says that he lays down his life of his own accord and no one takes it from him:

        “The Father loves me because I sacrifice my life so I may take it back again. 18 No one can take my life from me. I sacrifice it voluntarily. For I have the authority to lay it down when I want to and also to take it up again. For this is what my Father has commanded.” — John 10:17-18 NLT

        Note that Christ gives his life willingly and he claims that should he will it, he could rise back from the dead, which is exactly what happened.

        No, Christ did not in fact leave to find the other “Lost sheep of Israel”, please show me the verse where he says so. Christ ascended back into heaven and returned to the glory he shared with the Father.

        March 8, 2011 at 8:35 AM

  7. mark

    Hasan, you demonstrate great difficulty in understanding one simple truth. And that is that Jesus underwent extreme humiliation for our sake. Now, as a moslem fundamentalist, i can understand how hard that must be, as your God Allah, would never succumb to ‘dying on a cross’ and experience ‘death’ for mankind’s sake. But the truth is that, that is the kind of God we as Christians serve. A God who is not only a master, but more importantly, also a servant. Lastly, i would like to encourage you to not retrieve and interpret your understanding of the scriptures based on Catholic writings etc. Catholicism does NOT equate to Christianity. I wish you well.

    February 21, 2011 at 5:22 PM

    • Dear Mark,

      If I am sentenced to death by any court, and I come to you and say “Mark I am dying for your sins” will you make me God too? My God (Allah) is superior and free from ‘earthly’ desires, he is the supreme ruler and a perfect God.

      Earth is not the center of the universe my friend, as you explore nature, you will get to know what a ‘true’ God is. Jesus was a pious man, For his God, he went so far as to be hanged on the cross, My God saved him from this humiliation, because humiliation is the fate of the enemies of God.

      Jesus then migrated towards the South east, to bring the Message of the Lord to the other tribes of Israel.

      February 23, 2011 at 8:25 PM

      • Now Hasan, are we really going to lower ourselves to using strawmen?

        March 7, 2011 at 12:50 AM

      • I didn’t intend any blasphemy towards Jesus, it is just a hypothesis. The thing here is, Jesus was a human don’t forget that. He never claimed to be God. Neither he did anything ‘supernatural’.

        March 7, 2011 at 4:52 AM

      • If you’re looking for the exact statement, “I am God, worship me” then no, Jesus did not make this claim in so many words but it is rather clear from the Bible itself that Jesus said and behaved in a manner only the God of Israel could.

        For the Father loves the Son and shows him all he does. Yes, and he will show him even greater works than these, so that you will be amazed. 21 For just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son gives life to whom he is pleased to give it. 22 Moreover, the Father judges no one, but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, 23 that all may honor the Son just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father, who sent him. — John 5:20-23 NIV

        If you can read the above and not think that Jesus was claiming to be God then I dare say that you aren’t a Muslim.

        March 7, 2011 at 9:04 AM

      • Oh right, and can you give me a pretext of these verses like, who introduced it in the Bible and when did it become the part of it?

        March 7, 2011 at 7:32 PM

      • The context of John 5 and particularly these verses in question is that Christ has just healed a lame man on the sabbath and the Jews accuse him of breaking the sabbath and he replies with the statement that seeing as his Father is always working, then he therefore is always working as well (v. 17). The Jews are then incensed by this because the statement implies that he is equal to God (by making God his own father). Jesus then follows this not with a denial but rather by saying that he cannot do anything by himself but whatever he sees the Father do, the same does he (v. 19). He says that even as the Father is able to raise the dead, he (that is Christ) can do likewise and does so for whomever he pleases (v. 21). Furthermore he goes a step further and says that on judgement day it is not the Father who will judge men but rather it will be him so that everyone will honour Christ in the exact same manner that the Father is honoured (v. 22-23). Seeing as we honour the Father by obeying him, praying to him and worshiping him as the one true God, the same should be done for the Son, Christ says. He goes on to say that those who hear his voice will live and in fact have already escaped death (v. 24-25). He says that in the same way that the Father has life in himself (that is, in the same way that the Father is eternal and uncaused) so does the Son have life in himself (v. 26). I actually encourage you to read the entire chapter for yourself.

        The Gospel of John was written around 90 A.D. and finds it source in the eyewitness account from the disciple of the same name.

        March 8, 2011 at 12:44 AM

  8. Amin Riaz

    I take methodus has not read the highest Christian authority in the World – the Pope – himself said the Jews were not responsible or death of Jesus.

    March 6, 2011 at 9:16 PM

    • It is interesting to note that you do not at this time take any measures to defend your holy book after it has been demonstrated to be false. that said, the Pope is not the highest Christian authority in the world, but rather the highest Roman Catholic authority (btw, I’m Protestant and so you can see why I would protest). I would be committing the same error if I claimed that the Shiite Imamate was the highest Muslim authority in the world. Please, let us not cut corners in our argumentation or else we run the risk of making some rather embarrassing mistakes, but we live and we learn I suppose. Enough of the mild sarcasm, let us deal with what you have said:

      I take methodus has not read the highest Christian authority in the World – the Pope – himself said the Jews were not responsible or death of Jesus.

      Amin, if you had taken care to read the Pope’s comments just a bit more carefully you would come across the following:

      “Now we must ask: Who exactly were Jesus’ accusers?” the pope asks, adding that the gospel of St John simply says it was “the Jews.”

      “But John’s use of this expression does not in any way indicate — as the modern reader might suppose — the people of Israel in general, even less is it ‘racist’ in character,” he writes.

      “After all John himself was ethnically a Jew, as were Jesus and all his followers. The entire early Christian community was made up of Jews,” he writes.

      Benedict says the reference was to the “Temple aristocracy,” who wanted Jesus condemned to death because he had declared himself king of the Jews and had violated Jewish religious law.

      He concludes that the “real group of accusers” were the Temple authorities and not all Jews of the time.here

      It was indeed “the Jews” who killed Jesus yet what is meant by this statement is merely the Temple aristocracy of that time and this was precisely how I used the phrase as well. To be perfectly honest, it is only your own ignorance which saw a discrepancy with what I have said, and the statements made by the Pope.

      March 6, 2011 at 10:08 PM

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