False Religion: Islam

Muslim Eyes

Image Credit: Aleksandar Mijatovic http://www.123rf.com/.

Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God. (Isaiah 44:6)

Hijab shrouded women are no longer an uncommon sight in the United States, especially in heavily populated urban areas like here in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex. What is really surprising, at least to me, is the number of white American women who have “submitted” (the meaning of “Islam”) to wearing Muslim garb. What is it about this oppressive eastern religion that would attract “independent,” freedom-loving American women to subject themselves to such humiliation? I know; they probably don’t see it that way.

Ever since the attacks on the Twin Towers in New York City and the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. on September 11, 2001, there has been a lot of propaganda going around trying to convince us that the Muslim god and the Christian God are the same – we all worship the same God. I deal with this in some detail in my article “God Is Not Allah.” In recent articles dealing with false religions, I contend that false religions share some common characteristics: (1) They deny or reject the God of the Bible, (2) They deny or reject the deity of Christ, (3) They reject the Bible as the inerrant, infallible Word of God, and (4) they teach salvation through the works or efforts of the believer. Since I covered the first characteristic in “God Is Not Allah,” and for the sake of brevity, I will dispense with that discussion here. Instead, I will begin with the second characteristic.

Islam, which means “submission,” was founded around 610 A.D. when Muhammad supposedly received the first series of revelations of the Qur’an (Koran). Muhammad, the founder of Islam is of highly questionable character. His foster mother suspected that he received these revelations under satanic influence. “At twenty-five, Muhammad married a wealthy forty-year-old widow, Khadija, after she proposed to him. After Khadija died…Muhammad married a widow of a disciple and a six-year-old (who moved in with him when she was nine), Ayisha [his favorite]. His seventh wife was his ex-daughter-in-law; by the time of his death he had twelve wives and two concubines … Interestingly, Sura 4:3 limits the number of wives to four, and in Sura 4:31, marriage to one’s daughter-in-law was prohibited. But in Sura 33:36-40 Muhammad was conveniently given a new revelation from God that ordered Zaid, Muhammad’s adopted son, to divorce his wife so Muhammad could marry her by God’s command. This is called abrogation, to be discussed later”[1] (emphasis and insertion mine).[2] Muslims get very defensive when Muhammad’s character is called into question, although honest Muslims will concede the historical accuracy while at the same time justifying his actions.

Muslims reject the deity of Christ. To the Muslim, Jesus is just another one of Allah’s prophets (Sura 4:171). While Islam (and the Qur’an) concedes that Jesus was virgin-born, it rejects the notion that He was the Son of God or part of the Trinity (Sura 5:17; 5:116; 19:35).[3] “We are told that He was nothing but a slave on whom God showed favor (Sura 43:59); yet elsewhere we are told that the Messiah is not a slave (Sura 4:172).[4] While Jesus did not atone for anyone’s sins, according to Islam, He Himself was sinless (Sura 3:46). Interestingly, “Muhammad sinned and needed forgiveness (Sura 40:55),”[5] and yet he supersedes Jesus as Allah’s prophet. The Qur’an attributes miracles to Jesus (Sura 3:49; 5:110), but none to Muhammad. Islam is a false religion because it rejects the deity of Christ.

Islam rejects the Bible as the inerrant, infallible Word of God. While it accepts the Bible as “a holy book,” and even encourages infidels to heed its words, Muslims charge that the Bible has been corrupted. “The Muslim may charge that Jews and Christians have mistranslated the Bible, but the Qur’an says that they only misinterpret and disbelieve it (Sura 3:70-71)”[6] For all of their claims against the Bible, it is really the Qur’an that should be called into question. “One of the prerogatives of the Qur’an is abrogation… This is taught in three separate places in the Qur’an. Sura 2:100/106 says, ‘And for whatever verse we abrogate or cast into oblivion, we bring one better or like it’; Sura 13:39 has, ‘Every term has a Book. God blots out, and he establishes whatsoever he will; and with him is the Mother of all Books’; and Sura 16:101 (A.J. Arberry’s translation) says, ‘And when we exchange a verse in the place of another verse—and God knows very well what He is sending down—they say, “Thou art a mere forger!” Nay, but the most of them have no knowledge. Say, “The Holy Spirit [in Islam the angel Gabriel is the Holy Spirit] sent it down from the Lord in truth, and to confirm those who believe, and to be a guidance and good tidings to those who surrender.’”[7] The obvious question is, “If Allah is ‘all-knowing,’ why can’t he get it right the first time?” Walter Martin presents six theological problems resulting from this inconsistency:

  1. The Qur’an cannot be trusted because it contains “divinely inspired” contradictions. If God has a history of abrogating his own revelation, the “eternal speech of God,” how can one be certain that he will not abrogate it again in the future?
  2. It may be argued that it cannot be abrogated again in the future, since Muhammad was “the last prophet.” But how do we know that God will not abrogate that and send us more prophets?
  3. If God can abrogate his eternal speech, how can we trust him with our eternal soul?
  4. If God has done any abrogating…it does not indicate progressive revelation, which is additive. It indicates a contradiction and annulment, which subtracts from revelation, since at least some portion of past revelation has been cancelled. This would mean that God either did not know how future contingent events would turn out, or that he did but purposefully changed his mind. So the God of Islam is either not All-knowing or is a liar…
  5. If God can abrogate past divine revelation, it seems to indicate intellectual weakness at the very least. It not only causes problems for omniscience, since he did not have sufficient foreknowledge to avoid the need for abrogation, but also for omnipotence (because if he did have sufficient foreknowledge he apparently did not have the power to carry out effective preventative measures), as well as other attributes.
  6. If the Muslim God is not consistent, then his creatures have no foundation for morality and ethics…If God is not invariant, then the moral/ethical system derived from him would necessarily be inconsistent, and we would essentially be on our own…If each person had their own moral standard, there could be no legal basis for a society of any kind. This would seem to conflict with the Muslim concept of sharia.[8]

Unlike the Qur’an, the Bible has no abrogation, and it can be shown to be wholly consistent from Genesis to Revelation. Indeed, Jesus proclaimed, “For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled” (Matthew 5:18). Such a statement allows no room for abrogation, but Islam rejects the Bible and prefers the Qur’an, which admits that it abrogates. That makes Islam a false religion.

Islam teaches salvation through the efforts of the individual. “Every Muslim who hopes to escape the judgment of Allah must fulfill the works of the Five Pillars of the Faith (Sura 10:109):”[9]

  1. Recitation of the Shahada (“There is no God but Allah, and Muhammad is the prophet of Allah”);
  2. Five daily prescribed prayers (Salat or Namaz) in Arabic. These prayers include genuflection and prostration in the direction of the holy city, Mecca;
  3. Almsgiving (Zakat), which involves the duty to give a certain percentage of one’s total income to help others. This is not considered charity but an obligation arising out of the realities of a world where there is poverty, inequality, injustice, and suffering. Generally, performing zakat is to be done privately, unless there is a pressing reason for the giving to be made known publicly.
  4. Fasting (Saum or Ruzeh) during the entire month of Ramadan, when Muslims are supposed to fast from all food and drink from sunrise to sunset in atonement for their own sins over the previous year. Muslims are allowed to eat and drink after sunset and some get up before sunrise to eat before the fast begins again.
  5. A pilgrimage (Hajj) to Mecca, the holy city, at least once in a Muslim’s lifetime. The hajj takes place after Ramadan.

~Jihad is sometimes referred to as a sixth pillar of Islam. Since September 11, 2001, there has been constant debate about the meaning of the term. Many Muslims and some secular experts on Islam, have tried to say that jihad only refers to personal spiritual struggle. Jihad can and often does mean one’s individual efforts to be righteous, but it is often used by Muslims both past and present to refer to actual military struggle or “holy war.” Saying that jihad is simply spiritual struggle ignores Islamic history and the actions of contemporary Muslims, including militants like Osama bin Laden, who use it to refer to acts of killing in the name of Allah.~[10]

The Qur’an, like the Bible, teaches that all men are sinners (Sura 16:61; Sura 42:5), and all men are weak (Sura 4:28). As shown above, even Muhammad sinned (Sura 40:55; Sura 47:19; Sura 48:1-2), but Jesus was sinless (Sura 3:45-46). No one escapes Allah’s judgment, and even the most faithful Muslim cannot have the assurance of eternal life. While the Qur’an and the Bible agree on man’s sinful and lost condition, only the Bible offers the “free gift” of salvation apart from action on the part of man. “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast” (Ephesians 2:8-9). It is all the work of God and not at all on the part of man except for the act of receiving the free gift: “But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name…For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life” (John 1:12; 3:16). A works-based salvation makes Islam a false religion.

Islam is a false religion in that it rejects the triune nature of the God of the Bible, it rejects the deity of Christ, it rejects the Bible as inerrant and infallible, and it bases salvation on the efforts of the individual. The Qur’an, while it is not the word of God by any stretch of the imagination, does contain some particles of truth that, if used wisely, can be used as a witness to Mulims.


 

NOTES:

[1] Martin, Walter, The Kingdom of the Cults, (Minneapolis: Bethany House Publishers, 2003), 440.

[2] FYI: Unlike the Bible, the Qur’an does not have “books,” rather it is divided into long “chapters” called Suras. Passages in the Qur’an are identified by the Sura number followed by the number of the verse or passage, e.g., Sura 4:3 would be the fourth Sura, the third verse.

[3] FYI: these passages from the Qur’an are NOT taken out of context, because the Qur’an has no “context” to speak of. It is a collection of disjointed sayings that rarely have anything to do with one another, which explains why it can so easily be abrogated.

[4] Martin, 447.

[5] Ibid.

[6] Ibid, 448.

[7] Ibid, 445.

[8] Ibid, 445-446.

[9] Ibid, 447.

[10] Ibid, 447-448

3 Comments

Filed under Apologetics, Religion, Resurrection, Salvation, Theology

3 responses to “False Religion: Islam

  1. Interesting that the first comment is that your post is “hateful”. It seemed like a fairly objective reading of what they profess and comparing it to the writings and doctrine of the Bible. It’s also interesting that there was no attempt to refute the analysis, but only an emotional puking which can have no real value to anyone. I’m hating Roger Wilco’s hateful hate comment and long for an intellectual refutation of the points in the article (if one may be found).
    Very interesting post. I especially appreciated the links to the actual surahs so one could read them directly. Thank you for taking the time to make this available and for stimulating a discussion of this false faith.