Thoughts and Truth from the Impossible Life

Jesus as the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. A Christian Reply to Zakir Naik’s Explanation of John 14:6

by Sam Shamoun on Tuesday, April 17, 2012 at 4:48am

Most of the readers of our site are already quite familiar with Muslim dawagandist Dr. Zakir Naik. Although hailed by many Muslims as one of the best debaters, in our opinion Naik is one of the worst Muslim apologists out there and his arguments are laden with logical fallacies and egregious errors. Yet seeing that he is quite popular it becomes necessary at times to address his distortions in order to show that he is not the religious expert that he and others make him out to be.

In one of his lectures (*; *) Naik had an exchange with a Christian concerning the Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ. In this particular clip we get an idea of what transpired between the two of them. From Naik’s reply we see that the Christian tried to use John 14:6 (“I am the Way, and the Truth and the Life, no man comes to the Father except through me”), 9 (“he who has seen me has seen the Father”), and 10:30 (“I and the Father are one”) to prove that Jesus claimed Divinity.

Naik responded by first addressing John 14:6 and 9. He claimed that one should look at the immediate context of John 14:6, beginning at verse 1, where Jesus mentions that there are many mansions in his Father’s house and that he goes to prepare a place for his followers. Jesus tells his followers that they know the way to where he is going which leads Thomas to respond that they do not know where Jesus is going and therefore don’t know the way. We pick it up from there,

“So he says, ‘I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life; no man cometh unto my Father but by me,’ and I agree with that statement! Jesus Christ, peace be upon him (pbuh), was the way, the life, and the truth, no man came unto God Almighty but by Jesus (pbuh), during his time! Every messenger during his time was the way and the truth to Almighty God. At the time of Moses, Moses (pbuh) was the way, the truth and the life. No man came unto God Almighty but through Moses (pbuh). At the time of Jesus (pbuh), he was the way, the truth, and the life. At the time of prophet Muhammad (pbuh), he was the way, the truth, and the life. So every prophet at his time he was the way, the truth; and I agree with that statement! It meant that if you follow me you are following Almighty God. He was the way!”

Before addressing Naik’s assertion it is important that we first look at the passage to see whether Naik has exegeted it correctly:

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In MY Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.’ Thomas said to him, ‘Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?’ Jesus said to him, ‘I am THE Way, and THE Truth (al-haqq), and THE Life (al-hayat). No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known MY Father also.’” John 14:1-6

Anyone familiar with the basics of Islamic monotheism will immediately spot the problems that these verses raise for Naik’s beliefs and explanation.

For starters, Jesus not only claims to be the exclusive way to the Father he also says that he is THETruth and THE Life. This wasn’t the only time where Jesus called himself the Life:

“Now a certain man was ill, Lazarus of Bethany, the village of Mary and her sister Martha. It was Mary who anointed the Lord with ointment and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was ill. So the sisters sent to him, saying, ‘Lord, he whom you love is ill.’ But when Jesus heard it he said, ‘This illness does not lead to death. It is for the glory of God, so that the Son of God may be glorified through it.’ … ‘Your brother will rise again,’ Jesus told her. Martha said, ‘I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.’ Jesus said to her, ‘I am THE Resurrection (ana huwa al-qiyama) and THE Life (al-hayat). The one who believes in Me, even if he dies, will live. Everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die—ever. Do you believe this?’ ‘Yes, Lord,’ she told Him, ‘I believe You are the Messiah,the Son of God, who was to come into the world.’ … So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, ‘Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe that you sent me.’ When he had said these things, he cried out with a loud voice, ‘Lazarus, come out.’ The man who had died came out, his hands and feet bound with linen strips, and his face wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, ‘Unbind him, and let him go.’” John 11:1-4, 25-27, 41-44

The resurrection of Lazarus provided supernatural confirmation that Jesus is indeed the Resurrection and the Life, or the One who raises and gives life to the death both spiritually and physically. In fact, this is precisely what Jesus told the crowds on another occasion:

“Jesus said to them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of his own accord, but only what he sees the Father doing; for whatever he does, that the Son does likewise. For the Father loves the Son, and shows him all that he himself is doing; and greater works than these will he show him, that you may marvel. For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom he will. The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son, that all may honor the Son, even as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him…Truly, truly, I say to you, the hour is coming, and now is, when the dead will hear THE VOICE OF THE SON OF GOD, and those who hear will live… Do not marvel at this; for the hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear HIS [the Son’s] VOICE and come forth, those who have done good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to the resurrection of judgment.’” John 5:19-23, 25, 28-29

According to the above verses Christ can do whatever the Father does, something that no mere God-fearing creature would or could ever say (especially one who is supposed to have been a Muslim) since the Father does the things that only God can do. Christ further informs his audience that he is the judge of all and that everyone must honor him in the same way that they honor the Father, which means that they must worship him as God since this is the kind of honor that the Father receives.

As if this weren’t astonishing enough the Lord further arrogates to himself the exclusive prerogatives of God (the Father), such as raising the dead and giving life. He even goes so far to say that he is able to and actually will raise the dead both spiritually and physically just by his voice!

At a different occasion Jesus tells the crowds that he will be the One to resurrect the dead at the last day, i.e. on the day of resurrection/judgment:

“Then Jesus declared, ‘I am the bread of life. He who comes to me will never go hungry, and he who believes in me will never be thirsty. But as I told you, you have seen me and still you do not believe. All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away. For I have come down from heaven not to do my will but to do the will of him who sent me. And this is the will of him who sent me, that I shall lose none of all that he has given me, but raise them up at the last day. 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 him up at the last day.’ At this the Jews began to grumble about him because he said, ‘I am the bread that came down from heaven.’ They said, ‘Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How can he now say, “I came down from heaven”?’ ‘Stop grumbling among yourselves,’ Jesus answered. ‘No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up at the last day… Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.’” John 6:35-43, 54

Jesus’ statements become all the more significant when we realize that the Quran teaches that Allah is the truth and the living one who gives life and raises the dead from their graves, especially at the last day:

That is because Allah, He is the Truth (al-haqqu), and it is He Who gives life to the dead, and it is He Who is Able to do all things. And surely, the Hour is coming, there is no doubt about it, and certainly, Allah will resurrect those who are in the graves. S. 22:6-7 Hilali-Khan

Wherefore let God be exalted, the King, the Truth (al-haqqu)! There is no god but He! Lord of the stately throne! S. 23:116 Rodwell

And trust thou in the Living One (al-hayyi) Who dieth not, and hymn His praise. He sufficeth as the Knower of His bondmen’s sins, S. 25:58 Pickthall

Look then at the effects (results) of Allah’s Mercy, how He revives the earth after its death. Verily! That (Allah) Who revived the earth after its death shall indeed raise the dead (on the Day of Resurrection), and He is Able to do all things. S. 30:50 Hilali-Khan

He is the Living (One) (huwa al-hayyu): There is no god but He: Call upon Him, giving Him sincere devotion. Praise be to God, Lord of the Worlds! … S. 40:65, 68 Y. Ali

As one Muslim author wrote:

And while He is the Resurrector of the dead after He resurrects them, He merits the same name before their actual resurrection. Likewise, He merits the name the Creator before their actual creation. (The Creed of Imam al-Tahawi (al-Aqidah al-Tahawiyyah), translated, introduced, and annotated by Hamza Yusuf [Zaytuna Institute, first edition 2007], p. 50; underline emphasis ours)

There are other Divine attributes and names which Jesus claims for himself. For instance, Christ is THELight of the world:

“When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, ‘I am THE Light (al-nur) of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.’” John 8:12

“As long as it is day, we must do the work of him who sent me. Night is coming, when no one can work. While I am in the world, I am the Light (nur) of the world.” John 9:4-5

Whereas the Quran teaches that Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth:

Allah is the Light of the heavens and the earth (Allahu nooru al-samawati wa al-ardi). The parable of His Light is as (if there were) a niche and within it a lamp, the lamp is in glass, the glass as it were a brilliant star, lit from a blessed tree, an olive, neither of the east (i.e. neither it gets sun-rays only in the morning) nor of the west (i.e. nor it gets sun-rays only in the afternoon, but it is exposed to the sun all day long), whose oil would almost glow forth (of itself), though no fire touched it. Light upon Light! Allah guides to His Light whom He wills. And Allah sets forth parables for mankind, and Allah is All-Knower of everything. S. 24:35 Hilali-Khan

Moreover, Jesus is the Lord who knows all things:

“The third time he said to him, ‘Simon son of John, do you love me?’ Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, ‘Do you love me?’ He said, ‘Lord, you know all things (Ya Rabb! Anta talam kulli shay); you know that I love you.’ Jesus said, ‘Feed my sheep.’” John 21:17

Notice that Christ doesn’t rebuke Peter for his statement.

However, the Quran is clear that Allah is the Lord that has knowledge of everything:

And fear Allah, and know that Allah has knowledge of everything (anna Allaha bi-kulli shay-in aleemun). S. 2:231

Lo! your Lord is Allah (Inna rabbakumu Allahu) Who created the heavens and the earth in six Days, then mounted He the Throne. He covereth the night with the day, which is in haste to follow it, and hath made the sun and the moon and the stars subservient by His command. His verily is all creation and commandment. Blessed be Allah, the Lord of the Worlds! S. 7:54 Pickthall; cf. 10:3

And according to the Quran Allah would never command his followers to take any prophet or angel as their Lords:

He would never order you to take the angels and the Prophets as Lords (arbaban); what, would He order you to disbelieve, after you have surrendered? S. 3:80 Arberry

This is where Naik runs into a bit of a problem since in his definition and understanding of Islamic monotheism one cannot assign the exclusive names and attributes of Allah to any creature:

TAWHEED:

Definition and Categories:

Islam believes in ‘Tawheed’ which is not merely monotheism i.e. belief in one God, but much more. Tawheed literally means ‘unification’ i.e. ‘asserting oneness’ and is derived from the Arabic verb ‘Wahhada’ which means to unite, unify or consolidate.

Tawheed can be divided into three categories.

1. Tawheed ar-Ruboobeeyah

2.

Tawheed al-Asmaa-was-Sifaat

3. Tawheed al-Ibaadah

B. Tawheed al-Asmaa was-Sifaat (maintaining the unity of Allah’s name and attributes):

The second category is ‘Tawheed al Asmaa was Sifaat’ which means maintaining the unity of Allah’s name and attributes. This category is divided into five aspects…

(iv) God’s creation should not be given any of His attributes

To refer to a human with the attribute of God is also against the principle of Tawheed. For example, referring to a person as one who has no beginning or end (eternal).

(v) Allah’s name cannot be given to His creatures

Some Divine names in the indefinite form, like ‘Raoof’ or ‘Raheem’ are permissible names for men as Allah has used them for Prophets; but ‘Ar-Raoof’ (the Most Pious) and Ar-Raheem (the most Merciful) can only be used if prefixed by ‘Abd’ meaning ‘slave of’ or ‘servant of’ i.e. ’Abdur-Raoof’ or ‘Abdur-Raheem’. Similarly ‘Abdur-Rasool’ (slave of the Messenger) or ‘Abdun-Nabee’ (slave of the Prophet) are forbidden. (Naik, Concept of God; underline emphasis ours)

In light of this how can Naik say he agrees with Jesus’ statements in John 14:6 when in that passage the Lord is claiming some of the very exclusive traits and titles of God Almighty? How can he dare say that every prophet in his time was the truth and the life when this violates the Islamic doctrine oftauhid since it attributes the very unique characteristics of God or Allah to mere creatures?

By making such comments Naik is clearly guilty of shirk, or the sin of associating partners with Allah, for ascribing some of Allah’s names and attributes to true prophets like Moses and also to the false prophet Muhammad, thereby elevating them to the level of divinity.

There is another problem that Naik faces by accepting Jesus’ words in John 14. He conveniently overlooked the fact that Jesus repeatedly referred to God as the Father or his Father, which goes against the teaching of the Quran that Allah is not a father and has no children:

And they say, ‘The All-merciful has taken unto Himself a son. You have indeed advanced something hideous! The heavens are wellnigh rent of it and the earth split asunder, and the mountains wellnigh fall down crashing for that they have attributed to the All-merciful a son; and it behoves not the All-merciful to take a son. None is there in the heavens and earth but he comes to the All-merciful as a servant; He has indeed counted them, and He has numbered them exactly. Every one of them shall come to Him upon the Day of Resurrection, all alone. S. 19:88-95

They say: ‘The All-merciful has taken to Him a son.’ Glory be to Him! Nay, but they are honoured servants. S. 21:26

The Muslim scripture actually condemns the Christians for believing that Jesus is God’s Son, saying that Allah will fight against them for believing in such a thing:

The Jews say, ‘Ezra is the Son of Allah’; the Christians say, ‘The Messiah is the Son of Allah.’ That is the utterance of their mouths, conforming with the unbelievers before them. Allah assail them! How they are perverted! S. 9:30

Since Naik kept harping that he agreed with Jesus then this means that he basically disagrees with Muhammad and his concocted scripture. So why is he still a Muslim and why is he promoting the teachings of the Quran when they contradict the plain and explicit statements of the Lord Jesus which he claims to accept?

The final problem that Naik faces is that in the very same context where Jesus says that to see him is to see the Father he went on to tell his disciples that they can pray to him and he will answer all their prayers!

“‘From now on you do know him and have seen him.’ Philip said to him, ‘Lord, show us the Father, and it is enough for us.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Have I been with you so long, and you still do not know me, Philip? Whoever has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, “Show us the Father”? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father is in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority, but the Father who dwells in me does his works. Believe me that I am in the Father and the Father is in me, or else believe on account of the works themselves. Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. Whatever you ask in MY NAME, this I WILL DO, that the Father may be glorified inthe Son. If you ask ME anything in MY NAME, I WILL DO IT.’” John 14:7-14

Jesus explains to his disciples that the reason why they will be able to do greater works than he himself did while on earth is because he is returning to the Father in heaven. Jesus’ point is that once he is there the disciples will ask him in his name to do such works and Christ will answer them, meaning that he will empower them to perform similar deeds to the ones Christ performed.

Yet in saying this Jesus shows that he is omnipotent and omniscient (as well as omnipresent) since he must know who is praying to him in his name and must have the ability to enable and empower his followers to perform these feats no matter where they are! It also shows that Jesus taught his followers that they could pray directly to him once he returns to heaven!

Does Naik really want us to believe that he has no problems with any of this?

We move to Naik’s explanation of John 10:30. Naik again stated that the context of this particular verse is crucial in properly understanding it, and we wholeheartedly agree.

“Now again I will give you the context. After context you tell me that yet you believe that Jesus (pbuh) is Almighty God or not.”

After quoting the passage Naik contends that,

“In context you come to know in purpose Jesus and Almighty God they were one. My father is a medical doctor, actually I even am a medical doctor. If I say, ‘I and my father are one,’ does it mean that we are one person [sic]? No! When I say I and my father are one it mean my father is a medical doctor, I am a medical doctor, in profession we are medical doctors! It doesn’t mean one as a person [sic]; in purpose! It’s very clear! But still if you say brother, ‘no this one means one as a person [sic],’ I say ok. If you read further in the Gospel of John, chapter number 17, verse 21, it says that, ‘My Father is thou in me, and I in ee [sic],’ he tells the twelve [sic] disciples, the same one is used. ‘We all are one.’ If you read further, Gospel of John, chapter number 17, verse 21 says, ‘My Father art in me and I art in you,’ in the disciples he says, and the same, ‘We all art one.” If you say one in purpose [sic] you have to believe in fourteen gods – Almighty God, Jesus Christ, and twelve [sic] disciples. And if you go the original manuscript, brother, the word used one out here is the same. The one that is used in Gospel of John, chapter 10, verse number 30 which brother quoted, ‘I and my Father are one,’ is the same used in Gospel of John, chapter number 17, verse 21. Same one! ‘My Father is in me, I in you, we all are one.’ Verse 23 says that, ‘I am in you, we are one.’ Again same one, same word! In context means Almighty God, and Jesus Christ, and the apostles, they taught the same truth, the same message, in giving the message they were one. But if you say no, they were actually one then you should change Trinity into another concept meaning fourteen gods – God Almighty, Jesus Christ, and the twelve [sic] disciples.”

Naik’s statements are laden with errors. First, there were not twelve disciples when Jesus prayed in John 17 but eleven since Judas had already left to betray Jesus. Besides, Jesus himself said he wasn’t praying for Judas:

“While I was with them, I protected them and kept them safe by that name you gave me. None has been lost except the one doomed to destruction so that Scripture would be fulfilled.” John 17:12

Second, Naik’s statement that John 10:30 doesn’t mean that Jesus and the Father are one Person exposes either his ignorance or his willingness to distort what historic Christianity actually teaches concerning the relationship between the Father and the Son. Informed orthodox Christians do not claim that Jesus is the same Person as the Father, or that they are one in Person. Rather, Christians believe that the Father and the Son are one in essence and nature, while being personally distinct from one another. Trinitarians use John 10:30 to prove their assertion that Jesus is personally distinct from the Father while being one with him in essence since it is clear from the context that Jesus is claiming the exclusive and unique prerogatives of God:

“Jesus answered them, ‘I told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name bear witness about me, but you do not believe because you are not part of my flock.My sheep listen to MY VOICE; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my handMy Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father, we are one (ego kai ho pater hen esmen).’ The Jews picked up stones again to stone him. Jesus answered them, ‘I have shown you many good works from the Father; for which of them are you going to stone me?’ The Jews answered him, ‘It is not for a good work that we are going to stone you but for blasphemy, because you, being a man, make yourself God.’” John 10:25-33

Amazingly, Jesus says that he is one with the Father in the same context where he just got done saying that the Father is greater than all! Jesus is clearly excluding himself from those whom the Father happens to be greater than since he, unlike the rest, is actually one with him.

However, John’s use of both the neuter form of heis along with the plural verb form of eimi (esmen, “we are”) dispels any attempt of trying to turn the Father and the Son into a single Person. John’s use of hen which is in the neuter gender, as opposed to masculine heis, clearly demonstrates that their unity is not in terms of Personhood but in respect to their essence, e.g. they are not the same Person but two distinct Persons that share the same essence fully and equally.

This can be further seen from Christ’s statements that he gives eternal life to his sheep and that he is one with the Father in preserving them since none can pluck his flock from out of their hands. According to the Hebrew Scriptures all of these are exclusively Divine functions since it is Yahweh who gives life and there is none who can deliver out of his hand.

“See now that I myself am He! There is no god besides me. I put to death and I bring to life, I have wounded and I will heal, and no one can deliver out of my hand.” Deuteronomy 32:39

“There is no one holy like the LORD; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God… The LORD brings death and makes alive; he brings down to the grave and raises up.” 1 Samuel 2:2, 6

“Yes, and from ancient days I am he. No one can deliver out of my hand. When I act, who can reverse it?” Isaiah 43:13

Furthermore, the faithful are the sheep of Yahweh’s hand, e.g. his people whom he protects, and are supposed to hear his voice:

“Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the LORD, our Maker! For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts, as at Meribah, as on the day at Massah in the wilderness,” Psalm 95:6-8

Hence, Jesus gives life like Yahweh does since Christ is Life itself. None can deliver out of Jesus’ hand just like none can deliver out of Yahweh’s hand since Jesus is Almighty. And like Yahweh the sheep hear Jesus’ voice since they are the flock of his hand, i.e. the people whom he preserves forever by his power, which again shows that he is the Almighty.

What makes this even more amazing is that the OT says that there is no person who can perform works in the same way that Yahweh does:

“Among the gods there is none like you, O Lord; no deeds can compare with yours. All the nations you have made will come and worship before you, O Lord; they will bring glory to your name. For you are great and do marvelous deeds; you alone are God.” Psalm 86:8

“For who in the skies above can compare with the LORD? Who is like the LORD among the heavenly beings? In the council of the holy ones God is greatly feared; he is more awesome than all who surround him. O LORD God Almighty, who is like you? You are mighty, O LORD, and your faithfulness surrounds you.” Psalm 89:6-8

And yet Jesus does exactly what Yahweh does! The reason why? Because he is Yahweh God the Son! To put this in a form of syllogism:

  1. No one can do the works that Yahweh God performs, especially in the manner in which Yahweh performs them.
  2. Jesus does whatever work can God do, and performs such works in exactly the same way.
  3. Therefore, Jesus is Yahweh God.

Evangelical NT scholar Murray J. Harris puts this all together quite nicely:

“Similarly, when Jesus declared ‘I and the Father are one’ (John 10:30), he was not claiming that he and the Father were personally identical, for John uses the neuter for ‘one’ (hen), not the masculine (heis). Nor is Jesus simply affirming a unity of will or purpose or action between him and his Father, so what the Father wishes, he also wishes and performs. In the context Jesus has just declared that no person will be able to snatch his sheep out of his hand (10:28) or out of his Father’s hand (10:29). Such equality of divine power points to unity of divine essence: ‘I and the Father are one.’” (Murray J. Harris, 3 Crucial Questions about Jesus [Baker Books, Grand Rapids, MI 1994], Chapter 3: Is Jesus God?, fn. 14, p. 119; bold and underline emphasis ours)

Is it any wonder that the Jews thought that Jesus was blaspheming? Being familiar with their inspired Scriptures they could see that Christ was clearly making himself out to be God by claming to be able to do what only Yahweh does and for actually thinking that he was just as powerful as the Father!

Third, even though Jesus does use the same word for “one” in John 17 the context is completely different from John 10. In John 17 it is clear that Christ is praying that his followers experience perfect fellowship and union with one another as well as with the Father and the Son, just as the Father and Son enjoy perfect loving fellowship. However, in his haste to refute the Deity of Christ Naik conveniently overlooked what Jesus said concerning the fellowship and love that the disciples would experience:

“When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, ‘Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him… And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed… I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be IN US, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, I IN THEM and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me. Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me. I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, AND I IN THEM.’” John 17:1-2, 5, 20-26

Here, Jesus claims to be the Son whom the Father will glorify and who actually existed and shared in the same glory with the Father before the world was created. Does Naik really believe this seeing that it contradicts his Islamic beliefs concerning God and Christ?

Moreover, the reason why the disciples can enjoy fellowship with God and experience his love is because Jesus is personally indwelling them, e.g. “I in them”! In other words, the believers are united with the Father because Christ is in union with all of them, thereby allowing them to share in Christ’s own glory and union with the Father. Nor is this the only time where Jesus says this:

“‘In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you IN ME, and I IN YOU. Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.’… Jesus answered him, ‘If anyone loves me, he will keep my word, and my Father will love him, and WE will come to him and make OUR home with him.” John 14:20-21, 23

In the above citation Jesus claims to be present with all the true believers in the same sense and to the same degree that the Father is! And:

Abide in me, and I IN YOU. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I IN HIM, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.” John 15:4-5

It is Christ’s union with us and our union with him which results in a godly fruitful life since apart from his grace and power we can do nothing beneficial in the eyes of God.

However, the only way for Christ to be able to indwell and have fellowship with all of his followers no matter where they happen to be is if he is omnipresent. Yet the only way for him to be omnipresent is if he is God since only God is omnipresent!

At the end of the video clip when the Christian challenged his interpretation of John 10 and 14 Naik claimed that he is open for correction since he is human and can be mistaken. He then challenged the Christian to prove him wrong with evidence from the Holy Bible. Hopefully, now that we have exposed his blatant distortion of these specific Biblical passages with clear-cut evidence from both the Holy Scriptures and his own religious sources, he will do what he says and acknowledge his errors. Naik needs to publicly rectify his gross perversion of what the Holy Bible actually teaches so as to not mislead or deceive Muslims into thinking that he has correctly exegeted God’s inspired Word and that he is an authority on comparative religions. Naik is neither a scholar nor a serious student of this field of study, and is unqualified to speak on these matters.

If the Lord wills we will have further rebuttals to Naik’s distortion of Biblical truth in the near future.

Corcovado jesus

April 20, 2012 Posted by | Christianity / God, Societal / Cultural Issues, Understanding Islam | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments

Islam’s doctrines of deception

The below article from the The Middle East Forum reveals in vivid details the truth regarding Islam’s official policy of deception and lying to achieve its end of spreading itself and achieving a world wide caliphate in which all non-muslims are forced to convert or killed.

When ever a website or any media exposes any truth that puts Islam in its true light, muslims immediate dismiss it as a “hate” site.  Obviously, they HATE the truth being revealed.  Even this blog has been called a hate site for exposing the truth.  That is really a compliment as it shows that the truth on this blog has touched the accusers in some small way with the truth. (For a further understanding of the Islamic “hate” card being played please see:   https://paulmarcelrene.wordpress.com/2011/06/13/islamophobia-watch-website)

In any case, the The Middle East Forum is a respected and fair website and I recommend it for the article below and every other article I’ve read on it for its accuracy.

The Middle East Forum

by Raymond Ibrahim
Jane’s Islamic Affairs Analyst
October 2008

To better understand Islam, one must appreciate the thoroughly legalistic nature of the religion. According to sharia (Islamic law) every conceivable human act is categorised as being either forbidden, discouraged, permissible, recommended, or obligatory.

“Common sense” or “universal opinion” has little to do with Islam’s notions of right and wrong. Only what Allah (through the Quran) and his prophet Muhammad (through the Hadith) have to say about any given issue matters; and how Islam’s greatest theologians and jurists – collectively known as the ulema, literally, “they who know” – have articulated it.

According to sharia, in certain situations, deception – also known as ‘taqiyya’, based on Quranic terminology, – is not only permitted but sometimes obligatory. For instance, contrary to early Christian history, Muslims who must choose between either recanting Islam or being put to death are not only permitted to lie by pretending to have apostatised, but many jurists have decreed that, according to Quran 4:29, Muslims are obligated to lie in such instances.

Origins of taqiyya

As a doctrine, taqiyya was first codified by Shia Muslims, primarily as a result of their historical experience. Long insisting that the caliphate rightly belonged to the prophet Muhammad’s cousin and son-in-law, Ali (and subsequently his descendents), the Shia were a vocal and powerful branch of Islam that emerged following Muhammad’s death. After the internal Islamic Fitna wars from the years 656 AD to 661 AD, however, the Shia became a minority branch, persecuted by mainstream Muslims or Sunnis – so-called because they follow the example or ‘sunna’ of Muhammad and his companions. Taqiyya became pivotal to Shia survival.

Interspersed among the much more numerous Sunnis, who currently make up approximately 90 per cent of the Islamic world, the Shia often performed taqiyya by pretending to be Sunnis externally, while maintaining Shia beliefs internally, as permitted by Quranic verse 16:106. Even today, especially in those Muslim states where there is little religious freedom, the Shia still practice taqiyya. In Saudi Arabia, for instance, Shias are deemed by many of the Sunni majority to be heretics, traitors and infidels and like other non-Sunni Muslims they are often persecuted.

Several of Saudi Arabia’s highest clerics have even issued fatwas sanctioning the killing of Shias. As a result, figures on the Arabian kingdom’s Shia population vary wildly from as low as 1 per cent to nearly 20 per cent. Many Shias living there obviously choose to conceal their religious identity. As a result of some 1,400 years of Shia taqiyya, the Sunnis often accuse the Shias of being habitual liars, insisting that taqiyya is ingrained in Shia culture.

Conversely, the Sunnis have historically had little reason to dissemble or conceal any aspect of their faith, which would have been deemed dishonorable, especially when dealing with their historic competitors and enemies, the Christians. From the start, Islam burst out of Arabia subjugating much of the known world, and, throughout the Middle Ages, threatened to engulf all of Christendom. In a world where might made right, the Sunnis had nothing to apologise for, much less to hide from the ‘infidel’.

Paradoxically, however, today many Sunnis are finding themselves in the Shias’ place: living as minorities in Western countries surrounded and governed by their traditional foes. The primary difference is that, extremist Sunnis and Shia tend to reject each other outright, as evidenced by the ongoing Sunni-Shia struggle in Iraq, whereas, in the West, where freedom of religion is guaranteed, Sunnis need only dissemble over a few aspects of their faith.

Articulation of taqiyya

According to the authoritative Arabic text, Al-Taqiyya Fi Al-Islam: “Taqiyya [deception] is of fundamental importance in Islam. Practically every Islamic sect agrees to it and practices it. We can go so far as to say that the practice of taqiyya is mainstream in Islam, and that those few sects not practicing it diverge from the mainstream…Taqiyya is very prevalent in Islamic politics, especially in the modern era.”

The primary Quranic verse sanctioning deception with respect to non-Muslims states: “Let believers not take for friends and allies infidels instead of believers. Whoever does this shall have no relationship left with Allah – unless you but guard yourselves against them, taking precautions.” (Quran 3:28; see also 2:173; 2:185; 4:29; 22:78; 40:28.)

Al-Tabari’s (838-923 AD) Tafsir, or Quranic exegeses, is essentially a standard reference in the entire Muslim world. Regarding 3:28, he wrote: “If you [Muslims] are under their [infidels’] authority, fearing for yourselves, behave loyally to them, with your tongue, while harbouring inner animosity for them… Allah has forbidden believers from being friendly or on intimate terms with the infidels in place of believers – except when infidels are above them [in authority]. In such a scenario, let them act friendly towards them.”

Regarding 3:28, the Islamic scholar Ibn Kathir (1301-1373) wrote: “Whoever at any time or place fears their [infidels’] evil, may protect himself through outward show.”

As proof of this, he quotes Muhammad’s companions. Abu Darda said: “Let us smile to the face of some people while our hearts curse them.” Al-Hassan said: “Doing taqiyya is acceptable till the day of judgment [in perpetuity].”

Other prominent ulema, such as al- Qurtubi , al-Razi, and al-Arabi have extended taqiyya to cover deeds. Muslims can behave like infidels – from bowing down and worshipping idols and crosses to even exposing fellow Muslims’ “weak spots” to the infidel enemy – anything short of actually killing a fellow Muslim.

War is deceit

None of this should be surprising considering that Muhammad himself, whose example as the “most perfect human” is to be tenaciously followed, took an expedient view on the issue of deception. For instance, Muhammad permitted deceit in three situations: to reconcile two or more quarreling parties; husband to wife and vice-versa; and in war (See Sahih Muslim B32N6303, deemed an “authentic” hadith).

During the Battle of the Trench (627 AD), which pitted Muhammad and his followers against several non-Muslim tribes collectively known as “the Confederates”, a Confederate called Naim bin Masud went to the Muslim camp and converted to Islam. When Muhammad discovered the Confederates were unaware of Masud’s conversion, he counseled him to return and try somehow to get his tribesmen to abandon the siege. “For war is deceit,” Muhammad assured him.

Masud returned to the Confederates without their knowledge that he had switched sides and began giving his former kin and allies bad advice. He also went to great lengths to instigate quarrels between the various tribes until, thoroughly distrusting each other, they disbanded and lifted the siege. According to this account, deceit saved Islam during its embryonic stage (see Al-Taqiyya Fi Al-Islam; also, Ibn Ishaq’s Sira, the earliest biography of Muhammad).

More demonstrative of the legitimacy of deception with respect to non-Muslims is the following account. A poet, Kab bin al-Ashruf, had offended Muhammad by making derogatory verse about Muslim women. Muhammad exclaimed in front of his followers: “Who will kill this man who has hurt Allah and his prophet?”

A young Muslim named Muhammad bin Maslama volunteered, but with the caveat that, in order to get close enough to Kab to assassinate him, he be allowed to lie to the poet. Muhammad agreed.

Maslama traveled to Kab and began denigrating Islam and Muhammad, carrying on this way till his disaffection became convincing enough for Kab to take him into his confidences. Soon thereafter, Maslama appeared with another Muslim and, while Kab’s guard was down, they assaulted and killed him. They ran to Muhammad with Kab’s head, to which the latter cried: “Allahu akbar” or “God is great” (see the hadith accounts of Sahih Bukhari and Ibn Sad).

The entire sequence of Quranic revelations are a testimony to taqiyya and, since Allah is believed to be the revealer of these verses, he ultimately is seen as the perpetrator of deceit. This is not surprising since Allah himself is often described in the Quran as the “best deceiver” or “schemer.” (see 3:54, 8:30, 10:21). This phenomenon revolves around the fact that the Quran contains both peaceful and tolerant verses, as well as violent and intolerant ones.

The ulema were uncertain which verses to codify into sharia’s worldview. For instance, should they use the one that states there is no coercion in religion (2:256), or the ones that command believers to fight all non-Muslims until they either convert or at least submit to Islam (9:5, 9:29)? To solve this quandary, they developed the doctrine of abrogation – naskh, supported by Quran 2:105. This essentially states that verses “revealed” later in Muhammad’s career take precedence over those revealed earlier whenever there is a discrepancy.

Why the contradiction in the first place? The standard answer has been that, because Muhammad and his community were far outnumbered by the infidels in the early years of Islam, a message of peace and co-existence was in order. However, after Muhammad migrated to Medina and grew in military strength and numbers, the militant or intolerant verses were revealed, urging Muslims to go on the offensive.

According to this standard view, circumstance dictates which verses are to be implemented. When Muslims are weak, they should preach and behave according to the Meccan verses; when strong, they should go on the offensive, according to the Medinan verses. Many Islamic books extensively deal with the doctrine of abrogation, or Al-Nasikh Wa Al-Mansukh.

War is eternal

The fact that Islam legitimises deceit during war cannot be all that surprising; strategist Sun Tzu (c. 722-221 BC), Italian political philosopher Machiavelli (1469-1527) and English philosopher Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) all justified deceit in war.

However, according to all four recognised schools of Sunni jurisprudence, war against the infidel goes on in perpetuity, until “all chaos ceases, and all religion belongs to Allah” (Quran 8:39). According to the definitive Encyclopaedia of Islam (Brill Online edition): “The duty of the jihad exists as long as the universal domination of Islam has not been attained. Peace with non-Muslim nations is, therefore, a provisional state of affairs only; the chance of circumstances alone can justify it temporarily. Furthermore there can be no question of genuine peace treaties with these nations; only truces, whose duration ought not, in principle, to exceed ten years, are authorised. But even such truces are precarious, inasmuch as they can, before they expire, be repudiated unilaterally should it appear more profitable for Islam to resume the conflict.”

The concept of obligatory jihad is best expressed by Islam’s dichotomised worldview that pits Dar al Islam (House of Islam) against Dar al Harb (House of War or non-Muslims) until the former subsumes the latter. Muslim historian and philosopher, Ibn Khaldun (1332- 1406), articulated this division by saying: “In the Muslim community, holy war [jihad] is a religious duty, because of the universalism of the Muslim mission and the obligation to convert everybody to Islam either by persuasion or by force. The other religious groups did not have a universal mission, and the holy war was not a religious duty for them, save only for purposes of defence. But Islam is under obligation to gain power over other nations.”

This concept is highlighted by the fact that, based on the ten-year treaty of Hudaibiya , ratified between Muhammad and his Quraish opponents in Mecca (628), ten years is theoretically the maximum amount of time Muslims can be at peace with infidels (as indicated earlier by the Encyclopaedia of Islam). Based on Muhammad’s example of breaking the treaty after two years, by citing a Quraish infraction, the sole function of the “peace-treaty” (hudna) is to buy weakened Muslims time to regroup for a renewed offensive. Muhammad is quoted in the Hadith saying: “If I take an oath and later find something else better, I do what is better and break my oath (see Sahih Bukhari V7B67N427).”

This might be what former PLO leader and Nobel Peace Prize winner Yasser Arafat meant when, after negotiating a peace treaty criticised by his opponents as conceding too much to Israel, he said in a mosque: “I see this agreement as being no more than the agreement signed between our Prophet Muhammad and the Quraish in Mecca.”

On several occasions Hamas has made it clear that its ultimate aspiration is to see Israel destroyed. Under what context would it want to initiate a “temporary” peace with the Jewish state? When Osama bin Laden offered the US a truce, stressing that “we [Muslims] are a people that Allah has forbidden from double-crossing and lying,” what was his ultimate intention?

Based on the above, these are instances of Muslim extremists feigning openness to the idea of peace simply in order to bide time.

If Islam must be in a constant state of war with the non-Muslim world – which need not be physical, as radicals among the ulema have classified several non-literal forms of jihad, such as “jihad-of-the-pen” (propaganda), and “money-jihad” (economic) – and if Muslims are permitted to lie and feign loyalty to the infidel to further their war efforts, offers of peace, tolerance or dialogue from extremist Muslim corners are called into question.

Religious obligation?

Following the terrorist attacks on the United States of 11 September 2001, a group of prominent Muslims wrote a letter to Americans saying that Islam is a tolerant religion that seeks to coexist with others.

Bin Laden castigated them, saying: “As to the relationship between Muslims and infidels, this is summarised by the Most High’s Word: ‘We renounce you. Enmity and hate shall forever reign between us – till you believe in Allah alone’ [Quran 60:4]. So there is an enmity, evidenced by fierce hostility from the heart. And this fierce hostility – that is battle – ceases only if the infidel submits to the authority of Islam, or if his blood is forbidden from being shed [a dhimmi – a non-Muslim subject living as a “second-class” citizen in an Islamic state in accordance to Quran 9:29], or if Muslims are at that point in time weak and incapable [a circumstance under which taqiyya applies]. But if the hate at any time extinguishes from the heart, this is great apostasy! Such, then, is the basis and foundation of the relationship between the infidel and the Muslim. Battle, animosity and hatred, directed from the Muslim to the infidel, is the foundation of our religion. And we consider this a justice and kindness to them.”

This hostile world view is traceable to Islam’s schools of jurisprudence. When addressing Western audiences, however, Bin Laden’s tone significantly changes. He lists any number of grievances as reasons for fighting the West – from Israeli policies towards Palestinians to the Western exploitation of women and US failure to sign the Kyoto protocol – never alluding to fighting the US simply because it is an infidel entity that must be subjugated. He often initiates his messages to the West by saying: “Reciprocal treatment is part of justice.”

This is a clear instance of taqiyya, as Bin Laden is not only waging a physical jihad, but one of propaganda. Convincing the West that the current conflict is entirely its fault garners him and his cause more sympathy. Conversely, he also knows that if his Western audiences were to realise that, all real or imagined political grievances aside, according to the Islamic worldview delineated earlier, which bin Laden does accept, nothing short of their submission to Islam can ever bring peace, his propaganda campaign would be compromised. As a result there is constant lying, “for war is deceit”.

If Bin Laden’s words and actions represent an individual case of taqiyya, they raise questions about Saudi Arabia’s recent initiatives for “dialogue”. Saudi Arabia closely follows sharia. For instance, the Saudi government will not allow the construction of churches or synagogues on its land; Bibles are banned and burned. Christians engaged in any kind of missionary activity are arrested, tortured, and sometimes killed. Muslim converts to Christianity can be put to death in the kingdom.

Despite such limitations on religious freedom, the Saudis have been pushing for more dialogue between Muslims and non-Muslims. At the most recent inter-faith conference in Madrid in July 2008, King Abdullah asserted: “Islam is a religion of moderation and tolerance, a message that calls for constructive dialogue among followers of all religions.”

Days later, it was revealed that Saudi children’s textbooks still call Christians and Jews “infidels”, “hated enemies” and “pigs and swine”. A multiple-choice test in a book for fourth-graders asks: “Who is a ‘true’ Muslim?” The correct answer is not the man who prays and fasts, but rather: “A man who worships God alone, loves the believers and hates the infidels”. These infidels are the same people the Saudis want dialogue with. This raises the question of whether, when Saudis call for dialogue, they are merely following Muhammad’s companion Abu Darda’s advice: “Let us smile to the face of some people while our hearts curse them”?

There is also a philosophical – more particularly, epistemological – problem with taqiyya. Anyone who truly believes that no less an authority than God justifies and, through his prophet’s example, sometimes even encourages deception, will not experience any ethical qualms or dilemmas about lying. This is especially true if the human mind is indeed a tabula rasa shaped by environment and education. Deception becomes second nature.

Consider the case of former Al-Qaeda operative, Ali Mohammad. Despite being entrenched in the highest echelons of the terrorism network, Mohammed’s confidence at dissembling enabled him to become a CIA agent and FBI informant for years. People who knew him regarded him “with fear and awe for his incredible self-confidence, his inability to be intimidated, absolute ruthless determination to destroy the enemies of Islam, and his zealous belief in the tenets of militant Islamic fundamentalism”, according to Steven Emerson. Indeed, this sentiment sums it all up: for a zealous belief in Islam’s tenets, which, as has been described above, legitimises deception, will certainly go a long way in creating incredible self-confidence when deceiving one’s enemies.

Exposing a doctrine

All of the above is an exposition on doctrine and its various manifestations, not an assertion on the actual practices of the average Muslim. The deciding question is how literally any given Muslim follows sharia and its worldview.

So-called “moderate” Muslims – or, more specifically, secularised Muslims – do not closely adhere to sharia, and therefore have little to dissemble about. On the other hand, “radical” Muslims who closely observe sharia law, which splits the world into two perpetually warring halves, will always have a “divinely sanctioned” right to deceive, until “all chaos ceases, and all religion belongs to Allah” (Quran 8:39).

November 23, 2011 Posted by | Understanding Islam | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Wild Bill on The Friendship of Israel

July 10, 2011 Posted by | Politics/Government/Freedom, Societal / Cultural Issues, Understanding Islam, World Affairs | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Muslims Are Forbidden to Watch This Video

July 6, 2011 Posted by | Understanding Islam | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pamella Geller Executive Director AFDI/SIOA Speaking Before The Tea-Party Fort Lauderdale

June 13, 2011 Posted by | Constitutional Issues, Politics/Government/Freedom, Societal / Cultural Issues, Understanding Islam, World Affairs | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

   

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