THE REALITY OF JESUS
The Islamic view of Jesus (Peace Be Upon Him) lies between two extremes. The
Jews, who rejected Jesus as a prophet of God, called him an imposter. The
Christians, on the other hand, considered him to be the son of God and
worship him as such. Islam considers Jesus to be one of the great prophets
of God and respect him as much as Abraham, Moses, Muhammad (Peace Be Upon
Them) to mention but a few.
This is in conformity with the Islamic view of the oneness of God, the
oneness of divine guidance, and the complementary role of the subsequent
mission of God's messengers. Now, let us examine facts about Jesus one by
one, to get a clear picture of him.
1- God Is All Knowing ... But Jesus Was Not
When speaking of the day of judgement, Jesus clearly gave evidence of a
limitation on his knowledge when he said, "But of that day and hour knoweth
no man, no, not the angels which are in Heaven, neither the son, but the
Father" (Mark 13: 32 and Matt 24:36). But God knows all. His knowledge is
without any limitations. That Jesus, of his own admission, did not know when
the day of judgement would be, is clear proof that Jesus is not all-knowing,
and that Jesus is therefore not God.
2- God Is All-Powerful ... But Jesus Was Not
While Jesus performed many miracles, he himself admitted that the power he
had was not his own but was derived from God when he said, "Verily, verily I
say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the
Father do..." (John 5:19). Again he said, "I can of mine own self do
nothing: as I hear I judge: and my judgement is just; because I seek not
mine own will but the will of the Father which has sent me." (John 5:30) But
God is not only All-Powerful, He is also the source of all power and
authority. That Jesus, of his own admission, could do nothing on his own is
clear proof that Jesus is not all-powerful, and therefore that Jesus is not
3- God Does Not Have A God... But Jesus Did Have A God
God is the ultimate judge and refuge for all, and He does not call upon nor
pray to any others. But Jesus acknowledged that there was One whom he
worshipped and to Whom he prayed when he said, "I ascend unto my Father and
your Father, and to my God and your God." (John 20:17). He is also reported
to have cried out while on the cross, "My God, my God, why hast thou
forsaken me?" (Matt. 27:46). If Jesus were God, then couldn't this be read,
"Myself, myself, why hast thou forsaken me?" Would that not be pure
nonsense? When Jesus prayed the Lord's prayer (Luke 11:2-4), was he praying
to himself? When in the garden of Gethsemane he prayed, "O my Father, if it
be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless, not as I will, but as
thou wilt."(Matt. 26:36). Was Jesus praying to himself? Jesus, of his own
admission and by his own actions, acknowledged, worshipped, and prayed to
another being as God is clear proof that Jesus himself is not God.
4- God's will Was Distinct From His Own
Perhaps the clearest indication we have that Jesus and God are not equal,
and therefore not one and the same, comes again from the mouth of Jesus
himself who said in (John 14:28) "My Father is greater than I." When someone
referred to him as a good master in (Luke 18:19), Jesus responded: "Why
callest thou me good? None is good, save one, that is God..." Furthermore,
Jesus drew clear distinctions between himself and God when he said, "I
proceeded forth and came from God, neither came I of myself but He sent me."
(John 8:42) Jesus gave clear evidence of his subordination to God, rather
than his equality with God, when he said in (Luke 22:42), "Not my will but
Thine will be done" and in John 5:30, "I seek not mine own will but the will
of the Father which has sent me." That Jesus would admit that he did not
come into the world on his own initiative but was directed to do so, that he
would acknowledge another being as greater than himself, and that he would
negate his own will in deference to affirming the will of another, give
clear proof that Jesus is not the Supreme One and therefore Jesus is not
According to the Bible, God is an invisible spirit...
5- But Jesus Was Flesh And Blood
Christianity believes that God created man in His image: white, black or any
else, male or female? This is according to Genesis 1:26: "And God said, let
us make man in our image, after our likeness..." But this contradicts Isaiah
40:18 and 25: "To whom then will ye liken God? Or what likeness will ye
compare unto him?.. To whom then will ye liken me, or shall I be equal?
Saith the Holy One." See also Psalm 89:6: "For who in the heaven can be
compared unto the Lord? Who among the sons of the mighty can be likened unto
the Lord?" And Jeremiah 10:6,7 "For as much as there is none like unto thee,
O Lord... there is none like unto thee." Finally, in I Kings we read: "But
will God indeed dwell on the earth?
Behold, heaven and the heaven of heaven's cannot contain you ." (8- 26-27)
Our question is how does Jesus fit as being God? And how can God be born by
a mortal one as any other mortal when it is clearly stated in the verse that
heaven and earth cannot contain God.
While thousands saw Jesus and heard his voice, Jesus himself said that this
could not be done with God when he said: " No man hath seen God at any
time." (John 1:18). "Ye have neither heard His voice at any time nor seen
His shape." (John 5:37). So, Jesus said that no one had seen or heard God at
any time. How then can Jesus fit as being God when his followers both saw
and heard him? This is clear proof that Jesus was not God. During his
lifetime, Jesus never claimed to be the Almighty God, Who is worthy of
worshipping. Besides, he was frank in calling his people to worship the only
One God, Who is in the heaven. Why shouldn't we surrender completely and be
loyal to this One God, as Jesus (Peace Be Upon Him) did, and thus convince
ourselves that Jesus (P.B.U.H.) was only a man and a prophet
The Church recognizes the Bible as the primary source of knowledge about God
and Jesus. But since the Bible makes it clear that Jesus is not the Supreme
Being and the Supreme Being is not Jesus, upon what basis have you come to
It should be clearly understood that all the prophets and messengers of God
right from Adam to Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Them All) preached the Oneness of
God. Thus, their religion was Islam which means total submission to the will
and commands of the only One God (Allah).
Qur'anic Perspective of Jesus
A Messenger of God
Jesus (P.B.U.H.) was just a messenger of God whose birth was a special
miracle, without the intervention of the customary physical means. Allah
says in the Noble Qur'an:
"Behold! The angels said: 'O Mary! Allah hath chosen thee and purified thee,
chosen thee above the women of all nations. O Mary! Worship thy Lord
devoutly: prostrate thyself and bow down (in prayer) with those who bow
down.' This is part of the tidings of the things unseen, which we reveal
unto thee (O prophet!) by inspiration: Thou were not with them when they
cast lots with arrows, as to which of them should be charged with the care
of Mary: Nor were thou with them when they disputed (the point). 'Behold!'
The angels said: 'O Mary! Allah giveth thee glad tidings of a word from Him:
his name will be Christ Jesus, the son of Mary, held in honour in this world
and the Hereafter and of (the company of) those nearest to Allah. He shall
speak to the people in childhood and in maturity. And he shall be (of the
company of) the righteous.' She said: 'O my Lord! How shall I have a son
when no man hath touched me?' He said: 'Even so: Allah createth what He
willeth: When He hath decreed a plan, He but saith to it, "Be", and it is.
And Allah will teach him the Scripture and wisdom, and the Torah and the
Gospel. And (appoint him) a messenger to the children of Israel, (with this
message): "I have come to you, with a sign from your Lord, in that I make
for you out of clay, as it were, the figure of a bird, and breathe into it,
and it becomes a bird by Allah's leave, and I heal those born blind, and the
lepers, and I quicken the dead, by Allah's leave; and I declare to ye what
you eat and what ye store in your houses. Surely therein is a sign for you
if ye did believe. (I have come to you), to attest the Torah which was
before me. And to make lawful to you part of what was (before) forbidden to
you; I have come to you with a sign from your Lord. So fear Allah and obey
me. It is Allah who is my Lord and your Lord; then worship Him. This is the
way that is straight." (Qur'an 3: 49-51).
Given that the Noble Qur'an denies the trinity and the sonship of Jesus (P.B.U.H.),
what, according to the Qur'an, was the real mission of Jesus? The answer is
that Jesus was a link in a long chain of prophets and messengers sent by God
to various nation and societies whenever they needed guidance or had
deviated from the teachings of Moses and other messengers. He was
miraculously supported to prove that he was a messenger from God. However,
the majority of the Jews rejected his ministry.
In another verse of the Noble Qur'an, Jesus (P.B.U.H.) confirmed the
validity of the Torah which was revealed to Moses, and also conveyed the
glad tidings of a final messenger who would follow him:
"And when Jesus, son of Mary, said, Children of Israel, I am indeed the
messenger to you, confirming the Torah that is before me, and giving glad
tidings of a messenger who cometh after me, whose name is the Praised One." (Qur'an, 61 :6).
Note that "praised one" is a translation of "Ahmad" - Prophet Muhammad's (P.B.U.H.)
name. Careful study of the New Testament shows that Jesus (P.B.U.H.) refers
to the same prophet in John 14:16-17: "And I will give you another counselor
(Prophet Muhammad), to be with you forever, even the spirit of truth."
The usual explanation of this prophecy is that the counselor referred to is
the Holy Spirit, but this explanation is excluded by a previous verse in
John: "Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go
away, for if I do not go away, the counselor will not come to you."
The characteristics of this counselor, as can be derived from the prophecy,
are that he will stay forever with the believers, he will glorify Jesus, and
he will speak what he hears from God. All these characteristics apply to
Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H.). He came six centuries after Jesus (P.B.U.H.).
He came with a universal and everlasting message, fulfilling the prophecy
that the counselor will stay forever with the faithful. He glorified Jesus
as a great prophet. The Noble Qur'an attributes to Jesus (P.B.U.H.) miracles
not mentioned in the Bible. Prophecies in the Old and New Testaments, as
well as specific verses in the Qur'an, show how Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H.)
is rejected by Jews and Christians out of prejudice and misunderstanding,
rather than careful study of the Bible.
Not more than a prophet
Mary, the mother of Jesus (P.B.U.H.) never claimed to be the mother of God.
She was a pious and virtuous woman. The Noble Qur'an says:
"Christ, the son of Mary, was no more than a messenger; many were the
messengers that passed away before him. His mother was a woman of truth.
They had both to eat their (daily) food. See how Allah doth make His signs
clear to them; Yet see in what ways they are deluded away from the truth!" (Qur'an,
Like Adam in his creation
The Noble Qur'an recognizes the fact that Jesus (P.B.U.H.) had no human
father, but this does not make him the son of God, or God himself. By this
criterion, Adam would have been more entitled to be the son of God, because
he had neither a father nor a mother. The Noble Qur'an draws attention to
the miraculous creation of both in the following verses:
"Truly the likeness of Jesus, in God's sight, is as Adam's likeness; He
created him of dust, then He said to him, 'Be' and he was." (Qur'an 3:59).
Not a son of
Taking men for gods or sons of God was not a new thing. All ancient
mythologies have fables of that kind. God says in the Noble Qur'an:
"The Jews call 'Uzair' a son of God, and the Christians call Christ as the
son of God. That is a saying from their mouths; (In this) they but imitate
what the unbelievers of old used to say. Allah's curse be on them: how they
are deluded away from the truth!"
) Qur'an, 9:30( .
God also says in the Noble Qur'an:
"Say, He is Allah, The One and Only; Allah, the Eternal, Absolute; He
begetteth not, nor is He begotten; And there is none like unto Him." (Qur'an,
In a chapter (surah) entitled "Maryam" (Mary), the Noble Qur'an tells us how
Mary gave birth to her son, and how the Jews accused her when she brought
the child home:
"Then she brought the child to her folk, carrying him, and they said, 'Mary,
you have surely committed a monstrous thing. Sister of Aaron, your father
was not a wicked man, nor your mother a woman unchaste.' Mary pointed to the
child; but they said, 'How shall we speak to one who is still in the cradle,
a little child.' And he said, Lo, I am God's servant. God has given me the
Book and made me a Prophet. He has made me blessed wherever I may be and he
has enjoined upon me prayer and almsgiving so long as I live, and likewise
to cherish my mother. He has not made me arrogant and unblest. Peace be upon
me, the day I was born, and the day I die, and the day I am raised up
alive." (Qur'an, 19:29-33).
In the same chapter, following the above quotation, God assures Muhammad (P.B.U.H.)
and, through him, the whole world, that what is told above is the TRUTH
about Jesus (P.B.U.H.), although Christians may not accept it. Jesus is NOT
the son of GOD. He was, clearly, the son of Mary. The verses continue:
"That is Jesus, son of Mary, in word of truth, concerning which they doubt.
It is not for God to take a son unto Him. Glory be to Him. Whenever He
determines a matter, He but says to it, "Be", and it is."
After this strong statement about the nature of Jesus, God directed Muhammad
(P.B.U.H.) to call the Christians to worship the One God "Allah":
"Surely Allah is my Lord, and your Lord, so serve him. This is the straight
path." (Qur'an, 19:36 ).
The rejection of the very idea of God having a son is restated later in the
same chapter in even stronger words: "And they say:
The All- merciful has taken unto Himself a son. You have indeed advanced
something hideous. At it the skies are about to burst, the earth to split
asunder and the mountains to fall down in utter ruins: That they have
attributed to the All-merciful a son. It behooves not that the All-merciful
should take a son. None there are in the heavens and earth but comes to the
All-merciful as a servant." (Qur'an, 19:88-93).
On the day of judgement, Jesus (P.B.U.H.) wil1 disclaim any knowledge of
being worshipped as God. Allah, the Almighty, says in the Noble Qur'an: "And
Behold! Allah will say:
"O Jesus, son of Mary! Didst thou say unto men, "Worship me and my mother as
gods in derogation of Allah?" He will say: "Glory to Thee! Never could I say
what I had no right (to say). Had I said such a thing, Thou wouldst indeed
have known it. Thou knowest what is in my heart, though I know not what in
thine. For thou knowest in full all that is hidden." (Qur'an, 5:116).
The Noble Qur'an rejects the concept of the trinity; God the father, God the
son, God the Holy Spirit, as strongly as it rejects the concept of Jesus as
the son of God. This is because GOD IS ONE. Three cannot be one. The Noble
Qur'an addresses Christians in the following verses from the surah entitled "An-Nisaa" (The Women):
"People of the Book, do not go beyond the bounds in your religion, and say
nought as to God but the Truth. The Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, was only
the messenger of God and his word that he committed to Mary, and a spirit
originating from Him. So believe in God and His messengers, and say not
"three." To refrain is better for you. Allah is only one God, glory be to
him - that He should have a son! To Him belongs all that is in the heavens
and in the earth. God suffices for a guardian.
The Messiah will not disdain to be a servant of God, neither will the angels
who are close to Him. Whosoever disdains to serve Him and walks proud, He
will assuredly muster them to Him, all of them.
As for the believers, who do deeds of righteousness, We will pay them their
rewards in full, and He will give them more, out of His bounty. As for those
who disdain and walk proudly, He will punish with a severe punishment, and
they shall not find, apart from God, a friend or helper." (Qur'an, 4:171-
The end of the life of Jesus on earth is as much involved in mystery as his
birth. So how can it be deemed crucified when many Christian books affirm
that his death was not certain? Allah says in the Noble Qur'an:
"That they said (in boast), we killed Christ Jesus, the son of Mary, the
messenger of Allah. "But they killed him not, nor crucified him, but so it
was made to appear to them, and those who differ therein are full of doubts,
with no certain knowledge, but only conjecture to follow, for of a surety
they killed him not - Nay, Allah raised him up unto Himself; and Allah is
Exalted in Power, Wise." (Qur'an, 4:157-158).
It is a sad fact of history that not many followed the ''straight path" called to by Jesus (P.B.U.H.). He was only followed by a few disciples
inspired by God to support him. The non-believers plotted - as they would
against Muhammad, six centuries later - to kill Jesus. But God had a better
plan for him and his followers, as the Noble Qur'an tells us:
"And when Jesus perceived their unbelief, he said, 'Who will be my helpers
in the cause of God?' The apostles said, 'We are God's helpers. We believe
in God: so bear witness to our submission. God, we believe in what you have
revealed, and we follow the messenger. Inscribe us therefore with those who
bear witness.' And they (the disbelievers) devised, and God devised (against
them), and God is the best of devisors. When God said, "Jesus, I will take
you to Me and will raise you to Me, and I will purify you (of the
falsehoods) of those who do not believe. I will make your followers above
the unbelievers till Resurrection Day." (Qur'an,3:52-55 ( .
As the above verses indicate, Jesus (P.B.U.H.) was taken and raised to
heaven. He was not crucified. It was certainly the plan of the enemies of
Jesus (P.B.U.H.) to put him to death on the cross, but God saved him, and
someone else was crucified:
"And for their unbelief, and their uttering against Mary a grave false
charge, and for their saying, 'We killed the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary,
the messenger of God.' Yet they did not slay him, neither crucified him,
only a likeness of that was shown to them. Those who are at variance
concerning him are surely in doubt. They have no knowledge but only follow
conjecture. It is certain that they killed him not. No indeed: God raised
him up to Him: God is ever Almighty, Wise. There is not one of the people of
the book but will believe in him before his death, and on Resurrection Day
he will be a witness against them."
) Qur'an, 4: 156-159 ( .
The Noble Qur'an does not explain who was the person crucified instead of
Jesus, nor elaborate on the second coming of Jesus. However, commentators of
the Noble Qur'an have always interpreted the last verse of the above
quotation to mean that Jesus will return, and that all Jews and Christians
will believe in him before he dies. This understanding is supported by
authentic sayings (Hadith) of Prophet Muhammad (may the peace and blessing
of Allah be upon him and upon all His messengers.