Christianity

Debate: Which is the true path for salvation? Christianity or Islam [Ijaz Ahmed, MDI Trinidad vs Rev Stevens]

MDI recently took part in a debate all the way in Trinidad and Tobago, with the topic of the discussion on whether Islam or Christianity is the path to salvation.

Representing MDI was Ijaz Ahmed, with his debating colleague Reverend Steven. The following debate version is the raw version with no editing.

114 replies »

  1. You said: “Jesus fell and pray like Muslims, Moses removed his sandals and prayed like Muslims, Abraham fasted and sacrificed and animal like Muslims.”

    Another way of putting this is “Muslims fall and pray like Jesus, Muslims remove their sandals and pray like Moses, Muslims fast and sacrifice animals like Abraham.” You can even add that Muslims do not eat pork like Jesus, and many more. All that can show is that Muslims do some things that Abraham, Moses and Jesus used to do.

  2. REG

    Stated
    .[7] John Dominic Crossan states that the crucifixion of Jesus is as certain as any historical fact can be.[8] Eddy and Boyd state that it is now “firmly established” that there is non-Christian confirmation of the crucifixion of Jesus.[9] Craig Blomberg states that most scholars in the third quest for the historical Jesus consider the crucifixion indisputable.[5] Christopher M. Tuckett states that, although the exact reasons for the death of Jesus are hard to determine, one of the indisputable facts about him is that he was crucified.[10] (Wikipedia)

    The majority of even non-Christian New Testament scholars with regards to Jesus consider death by crucifixion to be the most certain element about him.

    I correct REG
    The gospels has different account of what happened and therefore are in dispute or in conflict with each other so there is a problem with their stories and it is not credible when it come to crucifixion. Jesus Himself said after the alleged crucifixion that he is not a spirit but body and flesh and ask his disciples to touch him and he ate food to let them know that he wasn’t crucified. So Jesus who is the Jewish messiah cannot be crucified and was never crucified and he will come to rule the earth where everybody will worship one, only, alone true God of Abraham.

    Thanks

  3. You said: “You do not have have Jesus’ original words in Hebrew or Aramaic. The Gospels and other New Testament writings have originally been in Greek. Thus the writers unquestionably translated what they thought to be Jesus’ words they wrote into Greek that has no equivalent proper name for God. Given this fact, how can you know whether or not Jesus actually used that name YHWH? And if Jesus was also carried away by the Jewish superstition that speaks against this Jesus of the New Testament being actually always the historical Jesus.”

    The historical Jesus would have been stoned to death by the Jews and not crucified by the Romans if had blasphemed the Hebrew divine name for deity. The Romans could not have cared less if Jesus had pronounced YHWH.

  4. REG

    Wrote
    Another way of putting this is “Muslims fall and pray like Jesus, Muslims remove their sandals and pray like Moses, Muslims fast and sacrifice animals like Abraham.” You can even add that Muslims do not eat pork like Jesus, and many more. All that can show is that Muslims do some things that Abraham, Moses and Jesus used to do.

    I write
    Jesus never worships Jesus but Christians are worshiping Jesus

    Abraham, Noah, Isaac, Jesus, etc. and all prophets of God never worshiped Jesus and never worshiped man or God-Man(an impossibility) but Christians are worshiping all those.

    All prophets of God never worshiped 3 Persons/persons(beings) in 1 being but Christians are worshiping them according to some councils be it Nicea, Calcedon or whatever. Not from God and the prophets at all

    All prophets follows the law of God but Paul of Tarsus who is a self claimed disciple of Jesus said Christians should not follow God’s law but his(Paul’s law) and the Christians are obliged to follow his(Paul’s) law.

    Prophets of God never worshiped a Son because God is not Son to anyone. But Christians worships a Son just like the Greeks worships Son.

    ……………….and many more.

    Gut Muslims do as you rightly admitted “Muslims do some things that Abraham, Moses and Jesus used to do”.

    That is what made all prophets in the Bible and the Quran Muslims. A Muslim is not follower of Prophet Mohammed alone but some one who submitted himself to do the will of One, Lone(alone) and only God of Abraham and follow Gods law.

    Thanks

  5. You said: “That is what made all prophets in the Bible and the Quran Muslims. A Muslim is not follower of Prophet Mohammed alone but some one who submitted himself to do the will of One, Lone(alone) and only God of Abraham and follow Gods law.”

    The ancient Israelite faith or religion does not appear to have a name. I don’t think the Israelites were ever called Muslims. The words “Jew” and “Judaism” are later developments.

    Quote:

    The original name for the people we now call Jews was Hebrews. The word “Hebrew” (in Hebrew, “Ivri”) is first used in the Torah to describe Abraham (Gen. 14:13) (Judaism 101)

    Another name used for the people is Children of Israel or Israelites, which refers to the fact that the people are descendants of Jacob, who was also called Israel.

    The word “Jew” (in Hebrew, “Yehudi”) is derived from the name Judah, which was the name of one of Jacob’s twelve sons. Judah was the ancestor of one of the tribes of Israel, which was named after him. Likewise, the word Judaism literally means “Judah-ism,” that is, the religion of the Yehudim. Other sources, however, say that the word “Yehudim” means “People of G-d,” because the first three letters of “Yehudah” are the same as the first three letters of G-d’s four-letter name. ((Judaism 101)

  6. REG

    Wrote
    The ancient Israelite faith or religion does not appear to have a name. I don’t think the Israelites were ever called Muslims. The words “Jew” and “Judaism” are later developments

    I correct REG
    The disciples of Jesus never called themselves Christians and Jesus does not know any religion called Christian. Jesus Christ taught his followers to worship Only One and Alone God and follow the law. In Islam any one who believe in One, Only and Alone God of Abraham and follow His law is called a Muslim(one who submits to only one God). That is what Jesus and all prophets taught. They all submitted to the will of One and Only God of Abraham and followed His Law(Islam). That is the meaning of Islam and who a Muslim is.

    Christianity means the follower of Christ and believe he is their saviour. Jesus never believed he was a Christian and so were all the prophets of God.

    Israel is the name of Judah? How about the people of Judah who do not do the will of God as we can find so many Jews then and today who do not do the will of God?

    How about someone who is not an Israelite or from the tribe of Judah who fears God and do the will of God as we can find then and today, so many people fear God and do his will and follow the God of Abraham than some Jews?

    Will God Almighty punish the non Jewish God fearing follower of the God of Abraham and put the bad Jew who is not God fearing in heaven?

    It does not make sense, God will choose some people called Jews and put them into heaven and punish the rest of the world who are not descendant of Judah to hell because it is not their fault not to belong to the tribe.

    Islam makes sense. It does not matter your descendant but believe in your creator as He defined Himself in the scriptures according to so many prophets and do good things and you are a Muslim(One who submits to the will of your creator).

    Thanks

  7. You said: “Yet. Christians never say that they worship different god from the Jewish God…”

    Christians worship the Jewish god because they believe he is triune and Jews reject the Christian god because he is triune.

  8. You said: “So Jesus who is the Jewish messiah cannot be crucified and was never crucified…”

    You are contradicted by the vast majority of New Testament scholars.

  9. New Testament (NT) scholars, both Christian and Independent (i.e. Bart Ehrman) consider the Gospels to be the primary source of information concerning the historical Jesus. Can you cite even one reputed Independent NT scholar who considers the Quran to be of any value whatsoever regarding the historical Jesus? Can you cite a single independent NT scholar who believes that Jesus’ disciples called themselves “Muslims” (Quran 5:111). Can you cite a single independent NT scholar who believes that Jesus’ name was “Isa”? Can you name a single independent NT scholar who has found credible evidence for the claim that Jesus brought a book called the “Injil”?

    Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Jesus rejected the Torah existing in the first century as corrupt? Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Zechariah (Zakaria?), John the Baptist (Yahya?) and Mary also rejected this Torah as corrupt? Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Jesus’ early followers rejected the Torah of the first century as corrupt?

  10. Mr. Reg wrote:
    ” New Testament (NT) scholars, both Christian and Independent (i.e. Bart Ehrman) consider the Gospels to be the primary source of information concerning the historical Jesus.”

    Response:
    “Independent” New Testament scholars, e.g:-
    Professor Bart D Ehrman on the historical worth of the Bible from his latest book to be published in the Winter 2016:

    ” When I say that a Gospel passage represents a “false memory,” I am not necessarily saying that the author of the account is misremembering something. That may indeed to be the case, but it is impossible to know. It may also be the case that he’s just makin’ something up. My point, though, is that the way Jesus came to be remembered by those who *read* these Gospel accounts, and formed their impressions of Jesus from them, was based on these narratives that are not true to history. They may be religiously true or theologically true, but they aren’t historically true. It is in that sense, and only in that sense, that I am referring to them as false memories. People still today have false memories of Jesus based on what they have read in the Bible.”( http://ehrmanblog.org/my-memory-book-false-memories-and-the-life-of-jesus/).

    Bart however lists some aspects of Jesus’ accounts given in the Gospels that can probably be true about him – and his alleged crucifixion is not included in the list:

    ” If we are looking for gist memories that appear to be true to historical reality among these materials, most scholars would agree with at least the following.
    *.Jesus was born and raised a Jew.
    *.He came from Nazareth in rural Galilee.
    *.As an adult he was baptized by an apocalyptic prophet named John the Baptist, who was preaching the imminent judgment of God and baptizing people for the forgiveness of sins in preparation for this climactic moment in history.
    *.Afterward Jesus engaged in his own itinerate teaching preaching ministry.
    *.Like John, he proclaimed an apocalyptic message of the coming Kingdom of God.
    *.Much of his teaching was delivered in parables and in thoughtful and memorable aphorisms that explained the Kingdom of God and what people should do in preparation for it.
    *.As a distinctively Jewish teacher, much of Jesus’ ethical teaching was rooted in an interpretation of the Torah, the Law of Moses, as found in the Hebrew Bible.
    *.Jesus’ teachings about the Torah led to controversies with other Jewish teachers, especially Pharisees.
    *.Jesus had a number of followers, from whom he chose twelve to accompany him on his preaching ministry.
    *.Jesus was occasionally opposed by members of his own family and by people from his hometown of Nazareth.
    *.His followers, however, maintained that he spoke the truth, and they may also have claimed that his words were vindicated by the miraculous deeds he performed.
    If these gist memories are accurate, we have a fair outline of information about the man Jesus himself during his public life, beginning with his baptism by John.”( http://ehrmanblog.org/what-can-we-know-about-the-life-of-jesus/).

    Christian New Testament scholars, e.g:-
    Professor Christopher Tuckett, professor of the New Testament in Oxford University:

    “And John’s account represents an (at times) extensive rewriting of the Jesus tradition by a later Christian profoundly influenced by his own ideas and circumstances. However, it is now recognized that what applies to the fourth Gospels applies equally to all the Gospels: the synoptic Gospels, quite as much as John, have been influenced by the ideas and the circumstances of their authors. Thus in reading ALL the Gospels we are to be aware that we are reading accounts of Jesus’ life as mediated by later Christians and hence we may learn much, if not more, about the latter as about Jesus himself in studying these Gospel texts.” (Professor Christopher M. Tuckett, ‘Christology and the New Testament: Jesus And His Earliest Followers’, pages 105-106).

    Many other conservative Christian New Testament scholars, such as Prof. Craig A. Evans, concluded the same of the Gospels.

    This is enough to refute your cherished logical fallacy of appealing to authority.

  11. Reg wrote:

    ” Can you cite a single independent NT scholar who believes that Jesus’ disciples called themselves “Muslims” (Quran 5:111). Can you cite a single independent NT scholar who believes that Jesus’ name was “Isa”? Can you name a single independent NT scholar who has found credible evidence for the claim that Jesus brought a book called the “Injil”?”

    Response:

    The terms “Muslim”, “Isa” and “Injeel” are just Arabic terms and one cannot reasonably expect New Testament scholars who are not experts on Arabic language or the Qur’an and do not have these as their field of study to write in these terms but only corresponding terms in the languages and field of study.

    However, the Arabic word ‘Muslim’ simply mean ‘one who submitted his will to God’. It does not mean ‘follower of Muhammad or the Qur’an’. Thus Islam recognizes all the past Prophets to be Muslims in this sense. I don’t think any serious New Testament scholar will dispute this: that Jesus submitted his will to God as all the other Prophets of God.

    The name Isa is just an Arabic name used for Jesus Christ – as much as the Greek scriptures know Jesus as “Iesous” and in English “Jesus” which are exactly pronounced as the Hebrew Yeshua. I think almost all ‘independent’ scholars of Islam recognized that the name Isa is an Arabic name for Jesus Christ.

    And the Word Injeel in just an Arabic term equivalent to the Greek evangelium. All New Testament scholars agree that Jesus of the New Testament brought a message directly from God called Evengelium (in Greek). And Islam says that that very revelation (Message) got written down as a book. Note that secular historical investigation is limited to the available data which is the much-non-historical Gospels. For such a limitation, New Testament scholars are yet to trace the historical existence of this book (evagelium) brought by Jesus. Therefore, this is never a proof that such a book never existed in history. The rule always operates that absence of evidence is not evident of absence.

    Professor Hans Kung reveals:

    “Lines lead from the very first Jewish Christianity to the seventh century, indeed to Islam…The analogies between the Qur’anic picture of Jesus and a Christology with a Jewish-Christian stamp are perplexing. These parallels are irrefutable and call for more intensive historical and systematic reflection.’Hans Kung, Islam, Past, Present and Future (2007, One World Publications, pp 37, 44).

    Professor James D.Tabor:

    ” There are some rather striking connections between the research I have presented in The Jesus Dynasty and the traditional beliefs of Islam. The Muslim emphasis on Jesus as messianic prophet and teacher is quite parallel to what we find in the Q source, in the book of James, and in the Didache. To be the Messiah is to proclaim a message, but it is the same message as that proclaimed by Abraham, Moses and all the Prophets. Islam insists that neither Jesus nor Muhammad brought a new religion. Both sought to call people back to what might be called “Abrahamic faith.” This is precisely what we find emphasised in the book of James. Like Islam, the book of James, and the teaching of Jesus in Q, emphasise doing the will of God as a demonstration of one’s faith. Also, the dietary laws of Islam, as quoted in the Qur’an, echo the teaching of James in Acts 15 almost word for word: “Abstain from swine flesh, blood, things offered to idols, and carrion” (Qur’an 2:172).The Christianity we know from the Q source, from the letter of James, from the Didache,and some of our other surviving Jewish-Christian sources, represents a version of the Jesus faith that can actually unite, rather than divide, Jews, Christians, and Muslims. If nothing else, the insights revealed through an understanding of the Jesus dynasty can open wide new and fruitful doors of dialogue and understanding among these three great traditions that have in the past considered their views of Jesus to be so sharply contradictory as to close off discussion.’James D Tabor, Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina,The Jesus Dynasty, (2006, Harper Element, pp. 287-288)

    Reg wrote:

    ” Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Jesus rejected the Torah existing in the first century as corrupt? Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Zechariah (Zakaria?), John the Baptist (Yahya?) and Mary also rejected this Torah as corrupt? Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Jesus’ early followers rejected the Torah of the first century as corrupt?”

    Response:

    No New Testament scholar believes that we have now in existence anything directly from Jesus, Zachariah, Mary, John the Baptist or the real personal disciples of Jesus to warrant a certainty about what these actually believed. But almost all Bible scholars believed that the Torah of the Bible was not authored by Moses – contrary to what Jesus of the Bible is presented to have believed! This is a tragedy to the Jesus of the Bible which shows that this Jesus of the Bible is either just largely a fictional character that was put words in his mouth by the anonymous Gospel writers (including the words that Moses wrote this Torah) or else he was quite unaware of this fact and thus was just a false Messiah! I personally think the first option is more plausible!

  12. Correction:

    ” …which are exactly pronounced as the Hebrew Yeshua.”

    Should be:

    Which are NOT exactly pronounced as the Hebrew Yeshua.

  13. REG

    Wrote

    You said: “So Jesus who is the Jewish messiah cannot be crucified and was never crucified…”

    You are contradicted by the vast majority of New Testament scholars.

    I corrected REG

    The Jews are Hebrews and it is their language and they knew it better than anyone for centuries and they have their scholars. Their Hebrew scholars from centuries knew what their scriptures say than anyone through their daily studies and worship.

    The Rabbis’ from the time of Moses, Solomon and beyond till today are overwhelmingly believing that their messiah cannot, can never and will never be crucified.

    I do not know the fake scholars you are talking about who do not know Hebrew, Aramaic or even Greek to come out with the believe that, the Jewish messiah was crucified while their scholars overwhelmingly believed that their messiah was never crucified.

    If someone is crucified, then he is not a the messiah of the Jews because the messiah is a powerful prophet of God and can never be crucified. The Quran assured the Jews that, yes their messiah was not crucified, but he is Jesus anyway and will come back and rule the world where their only, one and alone God will be worshiped.

    REG Wrote
    Can you cite even one reputed Independent NT scholar who considers the Quran to be of any value whatsoever regarding the historical Jesus? Can you cite a single independent NT scholar who believes that Jesus’ disciples called themselves “Muslims” (Quran 5:111). Can you cite a single independent NT scholar who believes that Jesus’ name was “Isa”? Can you name a single independent NT scholar who has found credible evidence for the claim that Jesus brought a book called the “Injil”?

    Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Jesus rejected the Torah existing in the first century as corrupt? Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Zechariah (Zakaria?), John the Baptist (Yahya?) and Mary also rejected this Torah as corrupt? Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Jesus’ early followers rejected the Torah of the first century as corrupt?

    I corrected REG

    The NT scholars are not Quranic scholars and so cannot say anything credible about the Quran. We need both NT and Quranic scholar to make sense on those books.

    We have so many scholars who are both and some of them leave Christianity because by studying the Quran to challenge it, they got the truth and examples are

    Gary Miller – a Mathematician and a Bible scholar

    Dr. Gerald Dirks – Master of Divinity(Christianity) and a former Christian Deacon but now a Muslim

    Dr. Jefferey Laing – A mathematician and a Bible scholar

    Dr. Shabbir Ally, a Muslim has degree in Christian New Testament

    Dr. John Esposito of George town university, a Christian who is a Quranic scholar speaks well about Quran and Islam, even though he is still a Christian. By independently learning the Quran and becoming an Islamic scholar, even though still a Christian has no choice but to tell the truth and respect his research.

    People like Bart Eraman are only Bible scholars and know nothing about the Quran and Islam, so if they find something against the Bible, do not expect them to find the same thing in the Quran unless they spend years like how they spent studying the Bible. It is unfair to ask for NT scholar about Quran and Islam.

    It is unfair for me to ask Sheikh Atabek about NT, even though the Quran had mentioned about Christianity, other religions and their practices.

    ……………………….to be continued

  14. REG

    Wrote

    Can you cite a single independent NT scholar who believes that Jesus’ disciples called themselves “Muslims” (Quran 5:111). Can you cite a single independent NT scholar who believes that Jesus’ name was “Isa”? Can you name a single independent NT scholar who has found credible evidence for the claim that Jesus brought a book called the “Injil”?

    I correct REG

    I dothink you and the NT scholars are not smart enough to believe Yuashua’s name is not “Jesus” at all but you and your scholars are calling him Jesus. It is unfair on your part to call him Jesus but question someone calling him “Isa”

    Isa is Eisha which is the short name for Yuashua and Jesus was called Eisha at his time but was never called Jesus and the name “Jesus” will be strange to him(Christ) and his contemporaries.

    REG, you should know that Muslim in Arabic means, someone who submits to the will of God and it is obvious that the disciples of Jesus submitted themselves to the will of God and are so Muslims. It is simple as that.

    This comes back to

    Allah(Arabic)- The creator of everything

    Yahweh(Hebrew)- The creator of everything

    is the same as

    Muslims(Arabic)- who submits to the will of God so you should be smart enough to know that when the Quran said the disciples are Muslims it means the disciples are those who submitted to the will of God.

    If Jesus did not bring a revelation, then you are not worshiping God because he(Jesus) is the person who is from God at his time and any revelation not from him is not from God. So, your scriptures are man mad and not from a man of God who was from God.

    REG Wrote
    Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Jesus rejected the Torah existing in the first century as corrupt? Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Zechariah (Zakaria?), John the Baptist (Yahya?) and Mary also rejected this Torah as corrupt? Can you cite a single independent NT historian who believes that Jesus’ early followers rejected the Torah of the first century as corrupt?

    I correct REG

    John the Baptist came as prophet before Jesus, why did he not reject or correct the Torah? Because that was not his duty as a prophet. It is not the duty of Jesus as a prophet and Mary to overhaul the Torah but Jesus did make some corrections to the Jews and acknowledge that he has not completed his work but something will come and guide and help mankind.

    Christian believe it is the Holy Spirit, but Muslims believes it is the Prophet Mohammed who will come with a new and complete revelation and final from God to correct the previous scriptures. For the whole mankind because Jesus was sent to only the Jews, so his purpose is not to bring the final revelation to all mankind.

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