Beyond Mere Christianity


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  • Beyond Mere Christianity


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    Appendix
    B:

    Common Questions

     

    Do
    Muslims accept Jesus Christ?

    They do accept
    and revere him as a Prophet of extremely high rank, and as one of the most
    important figures in human history. They do not regard him as the only begotten
    Son of God.

    No person who rejects Jesus Christ can be
    properly called a Muslim. Practitioners of the Religion are obliged to accept,
    and show deference and respect to the mission of Jesus Christ
    just
    as they are obliged to accept, and show deference and respect to the missions
    of Abraham, Joseph, Moses, Lot, and other familiar Prophets of the Bible. The
    lives and experiences of these remarkable men (and, interestingly, of the
    Virgin Mary) are set out in great detail in the Qur’an.

     

     

    Do
    Muslims accept the Bible?

    Muslims believe, and have held as a matter of faith for many
    centuries, that the text of the Christians Bible, including the four ‘official’
    Gospels, was corrupted over the centuries by short-sighted human beings who had
    their eyes set on temporal gains (such as political or social influence).

    This is also the view of the best modern
    scholars of the Biblical texts. In the various texts of the Gospels alone
    texts
    that are, by the way, written in Greek, and not in the Aramaic that was
    actually spoken by Jesus
    there are over three thousand textual disagreements,
    and clear evidence of extensive alteration by many hands over a period of many
    years.

    Muslims regard the Qur’an as the unaltered Word
    of the Living God. They do not place the Bible in this category.

     

    Does
    the Qur’an condone or encourage violence against innocent people?

    No. It expressly forbids such actions. It also expressly
    forbids suicide. Disobeying its instructions on either of these points is a
    grave sin that exposes one’s soul to the prospect of eternal hellfire.

     

    Did
    the Prophet Muhammad teach hatred or intolerance?

    No. He taught precisely the contrary. A famous saying of his
    is: ‘There shall be no harm for harm, no revenge for revenge.’ He may be the
    only political figure in history who, on assuming the role of emperor, proceeded
    to grant general amnesty to factions that he knew full well had plotted his
    assassination. He also vigorously protected the religious rights of non-Muslim
    groups under his protection.

     

    Why
    don’t Muslims excommunicate people who seem to violate (or seem to advocate the
    violation of) these teachings?

    There is nothing to excommunicate them from. There is no
    hierarchy or mediator within the Religion; believers are individually accountable for their own decisions to obey, or to
    disregard, God’s instructions.

     

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