Shabir Ally – Did Jesus Claim to be God
Here are a few comments by the popular Muslim apologist, Shabir Ally, about whether Jesus claimed to be God.
Shabir Ally is right in saying that Jesus taught monotheism
Shabir Ally rightly argues that Jesus taught monotheism. But Shabir Ally does not understand that Trinitarianism is monotheism.
The real question is not monotheism but:
- Trinitarian monotheism.
- Unitarian/Tawhid monotheism.
The Old Testament does not teach Unitarian monotheism
The very first chapter of the Bible affirms monotheism and yet it is not the kind of monotheism found in the Quran (Genesis 1:1-2; 26-27 with John 1:1-3). Other biblical examples of monotheism that are not affirmed in the Quran:
- The Angel of the LORD (Genesis 18:1-2; 32:28-30). These are texts wherein God appears in the form of a man.
- Statements King David made in the Psalms (Psalm 2; 45:6-7 with Hebrews 1:8-9; 110:1 with Matthew 22:35-46)
- The Prophet Isaiah (Isaiah 48:16)
These are not full-blown Trinitarian texts, but they certainly are not full-blown Unitarian texts either. In fact, these and other Old Testament passages agree with the Trinitarian monotheism found in the ministry of Jesus.
Jesus did not teach unitarian monotheism
Jesus is identified with God in various ways:
- Jesus has an Old Testament name meaning “Yahweh saves” (Matthew 1:21; cf. Jonah 2:9).
- Jesus also has the Name “Immanuel” meaning God with us (Matthew 1:23).
- Jesus forgave sins; something only God can do (Mark 2:1-13).
- Jesus said, “Before Abraham was, I am…” (John 8:58-59 with Exodus 3:14-15).
- Jesus affirmed the unity of God when He taught, “I and the Father are one” (John 10:30).
- Jesus accepted worship from others (Matt. 8:2; 14:33; 15:25; 20:20; 28:17; Mark 5:6).
- The Jewish Sanhedrin finally condemned Jesus to death for blasphemy (Matthew 26:63-66).
- The Good News of the Gospel is that Jesus was vindicated when He rose again from the dead (1 Corinthians 15:1-4).
Jesus identified Himself with God by His words and actions. Jesus is the reason Christians are Trinitarian monotheists (cf. Hebrews 1:1-3).
An Invitation to Believe in the One True God
If you believe in Jesus, then you should be a Trinitarian monotheist who confesses Jesus as Lord and Savior (John 20:27-28). Believe in Jesus and be baptized in the Triune Name of God (Matthew 28:18-19).