What every Muslim should know about the Bible
What should every Muslim know about the Bible
1. The Bible is the Word of God.1
2. The Bible was written by about 40 human authors by divine inspiration over about 1,600 years (1500 B.C. [Moses] to about 100 A.D. [Apostle John]).
3. The Bible is a text that is a testimony to God’s work in history culminating in Jesus’ death, resurrection, and ascension into heaven,
The Christian faith is an historical faith. It is bound up with certain happenings in the past, and if these happenings could be shown never to have occurred then the Christian faith would be found to have been built on sand.2
4. Contrary to the Qur’an, the truth is that Jesus was never given a book from heaven,
Quran 5:46-47 (Muhsin Khan)
And in their footsteps, We sent ‘Iesa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary), confirming the Taurat (Torah) that had come before him, and We gave him the Injeel (Gospel),3 in which was guidance and light and confirmation of the Taurat (Torah) that had come before it, a guidance and an admonition for Al-Muttaqun (the pious – see V. 2:2).
Let the people of the Injeel (Gospel) judge by what Allah has revealed therein. And whosoever does not judge by what Allah has revealed (then) such (people) are the Fasiqun (the rebellious i.e. disobedient (of a lesser degree) to Allah.
The Qur’anic claim about the Injeel is itself an attempt to corrupt the New Testament because no Injeel was ever given to Jesus. Followers of Jesus have four gospels, but they never had what the Quran refers to as the Injeel.4 The Qur’anic Injeel (book from heaven) does not exist and has never existed.
Jesus is the revelation sent from heaven (John 1:14). Jesus is the good news and this good news culminated with His teaching about God, His death on the cross for sin, resurrection from the dead, and His ascension to the right hand of God.
If you have never read one of the Christian gospels, I invite you to read the Gospel of John.
5. The biblical teaching about Jesus’ death on the cross is much clearer than the Quranic account. Islam’s denial of Jesus’ death on the cross is not historical. Islam’s denial of Jesus’ death on the cross may have been newsworthy in the 7th century because it is a record of what Muhammad recited in the 7th century. But Muhammad’s recitation was not newsworthy in the 1st century because it did not happen. This is important because events that happen in history are true for everyone. Events that do not happen in history are not true for everyone.5
Since the Muslim account concerning Jesus’ death and resurrection did not happen in history, Islam is not true for everyone. More importantly, Islam is untrue because it denies what God has done in history through Jesus.
7. The Gospels don’t contain the names of those who wrote down the events and teachings about Jesus’ life: Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John. But this does not undermine their authority just as the authority of the Quran is not undermined because it does not contain the names of those who compiled it.
- The great proof for the Bible being the Word of God is Jesus. Jesus lived by the Bible, and Jesus is alive. His tomb is empty (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).
- Alan Richardson, Christian Apologetics (London: SCM, 1947), 91, cited in Ronald H. Nash, Christian Faith and Historical Understanding, [Dallas: Word Publishing/Probe Books, 1984], 12.
- Translating the Arabic Injeel as “Gospel” adds further confusion because the Greek word Christians translate as “gospel” (euangelion) means “good news” and Jesus is the good news. Injeel does not have the same meaning; in fact, the Quranic Injeel is a denial of the good news about Jesus’ Sonship, death on the cross for sin and resurrection.
- The biblical word gospel (Greek: euangelion) refers to good news and preaching (Greek: euangelizō) the good news about the kingdom of God, God’s Messiah (Christ), and what Jesus accomplished and is accomplishing in history,
1 Corinthians 15:1–4
Now I make known to you, brethren, the gospel (Greek: euangelion) which I preached (Greek: euangelizō) to you, which also you received, in which also you stand, by which also you are saved, if you hold fast the word which I preached (Greek: euangelizō) to you, unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you as of first importance what I also received, that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures…
Jesus’ followers preached (Greek: euangelizō) the good news (Greek: euangelion) about Jesus and years later they wrote down the good news they preached in books Christians call gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John.
The four gospels of Christianity are divinely inspired accounts about the good news of Jesus’ fulfilling the Old Testament Scriptures, His death for sin, His victory over the devil and death, and eternal life to those who believe in Him (John 20:30-31).
- The Qur’an not only invents a book that never existed (Injeel), the Qur’an denies Jesus’ death on the cross and resurrection, and invents a time in the past when all humanity allegedly testified to Islamic belief, the Day of Alastu.
- The Christian gospels contain no copyist errors from the Qur’anic Injeel, because the Qur’anic Injeel never existed (see #4).