The Jesus of Islam: Do Muslims honor Jesus as a great Prophet?
Muslims insist they love Jesus and honor Him as a prophet, and there are numerous references to Jesus in the Quran. It would seem therefore that the Jesus of Islam honors Jesus as a great prophet.
But the reality is that the Jesus of Islam is not the historical Jesus. Muslims don’t honor essential things Jesus taught, commanded, and did (e.g. Jesus has authority to forgive sins; Muslims don’t observe Lord’s Supper remembering Jesus’ death on the cross for sin; etc.).
Furthermore, many of the things Muslims believe about Jesus have nothing to do with what Jesus taught in the 1st century. Many Muslims believe Jesus will return east of Damascus, dressed in yellow robes with his head anointed. He will join the Mhadi and kill the Antichrist ushering in a period of peace. According to Sahih al-Bukhari,
Beliefs that Jesus will “break the cross, kill the pig” etc. have no grounding in what Jesus taught in the 1st century.
Muslims believe that after Jesus’ rule of about forty years he will die and be buried next to Muhammad in Medina. In fact, Muslims believe they honor Jesus by reserving a space next to Muhammad’s tomb where they think Jesus will one day be buried,
Muslims honor what Muhammad said about Jesus in the 7th century. However, there is an historical gap of some 600 years between the Jesus of history and the Jesus of Muhammad.
More importantly, there is an eternal difference between what Muhammad said/did not say about Jesus in the 7th century and the real Jesus Who lived and died in the 1st century.
You might also be interested in my chapter “Do Muslims Believe in Jesus?” in my e-book, “Is the Qur’an the Word of God?“.