Thursday, September 25, 2008

Farhan Qureshi vs. David Wood: "Can We Trust the Qur'an?"

Farhan Qureshi is one of my three favorite Muslims (the others being Ahsen Malik and Bassam Zawadi). In this debate, we discuss some of the central claims of the Qur'an, and the implications on its reliability. (For more by Farhan, visit the Defending Islam website.)






Glenn Hendrickson said...

I must say that I really enjoyed this debate. Farhan did an excellent job staying on topic (compared to the other Muslim debater).

And can I also say that the camera was set up quite nicely!

Nabeel Qureshi said...

"What is crucifixion? Does crucifixion mean that a person is nailed to a cross? Is that the definition that we're using? No! To crucify means to curse!"

And the award for the most gross, blatant misinterpretation of text goes out to Farhan Qureshi - congratulations!

El-Cid said...

I really like this young man Farhan as a debator. He is articulate, easy to follow, respectful, and seems very sincere.

I hope there will be more debates with him posted here in the future.

Farhan doing an excellent job of staying on topic and actually seeking to directly answer the points raised by his opponent made this a very good debate.

Good job to both of you David and Farhan.

Abdulmu'min said...

It's good to see David Wood engaging in these debates. I won't be surprised if he becomes a muslim someday.

traeh said...

Excellent debate. I thought Farhan was a very good debater, in that he managed at times to keep his head above water, pretty impressive when you have such an uphill case to make (the trustworthiness of the Qur'an and of Islam), and when you are arguing against a very strong debater like David Wood. David's responses were often devastating, but then he has a much easier case to make (that the Qur'an is not to be trusted).

I could imagine Farhan one day leaving Islam, because Farhan is pretty open to reason. And he couldn't very adequately answer many of David's arguments.

One of the most satisfying aspects of the debate: to see Farhan reply with a seemingly powerful counter, only to find David coming back with an even more powerful knockout reply. For example, David told us of a scribe who left Islam because he found Muhammad allowing him, the scribe, to compose sentences or phrases in the Qur'an. The scribe realized that the Qur'an could not be directly verbatim from God, as claimed in the Qur'an and by Muslims.

To this, Farhan replied that that same scribe later returned to Islam. Thus, Farhan said, that scribe is not a reliable witness in anything he accused Muhammad of. That seemed a very impressive reply on Farhan's part. But then David came back and told us why the scribe returned to Islam: Muhammad conquered Mecca, and said he wanted certain people killed. One of the people to be killed was the scribe. But some Meccans came to Muhammad, and begged mercy, provided the scribe reconverted to Islam. So the scribe converted back to Islam, and Muhammad agreed to let the scribe live. That seemed a knockout reply from David. The scribe did not return to Islam because he is an unreliable witness who says one thing now, a different thing, the next day, and a third thing the day after. No, the scribe returned to Islam to save his own life from Muhammad!

To this, David then added something like, "so much for the verse in the Qur'an that says 'no compulsion in religion.'" The scribe only got to live if he converted! And it's clear as can be, at least to those who know the Qur'an in any detail, and can compare it to the scriptures of the other major religions, that the Qur'an contains many elements of religious coercion, and is indeed far far more theocratic and totalitarian than the other major religions, whether one is speaking of Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, or Christianity.

Farhan made some good points and counters to David; there were moments where I thought Farhan had the better of the argument. But only moments. On the whole David had a commanding mastery of the debate, especially on all the core issues.

donna60 said...

The fact of the matter is that Christians were not told to go to the Jews for confirmation about the NT texts. It is a nil issue whether Jews believe in Jesus or not. On the other hand, Mohammad told his followers to go to Christians and Jews for confirmation as to what Mohammad said.

donna60 said...

This is the fact of the matter. If you developed lust for your daughter-in-law, and she reciprocated--even if both of you were to gave in to this sin, you both would lose your fellowship with other Christians, the Lord's Church and your Heavenly Father.

There should be no doubt about this is we read 1 Corinthians 5.

Sometimes these disasterous situations come up, where a friend of a brother of a man drops by unexpectedly, and the man's wife is caught is a state of dishabille and humiliation. Decent people avert their eyes, and pretend they never noticed, and move away from the situation for the grace and politeness to the woman.

Mohammad took the opportunity to move right in. Instead of offering grace to a humiliatng situation, he reported this so-called
"revelation" to provide for his lust.

May I just add that this is another example of Jesus crushing the head of Satan, and providing for and protecting His own women with true, God-fearing men. To all the men out there who have had this happen and treated it with godly actions and kindness.-- Thank you--thank you with eternal gratitude!

This is another example as to why, as a woman, I would never leave my sweetest, kindest and gentlest Savior, who exhorts his men to treat me just as lovingly.

donna60 said...

Lust is human nature! What could poor Mohammad do???!!

However, the man of God, through the power of Christ Jesus must become like sons of God!

Matthew 5:48 "Therefore you are to be perfect just as your Heavenly father is perfect."

Mr Qureshi is doing a much better job at convincing me that I am better off with the the Lord's people, than even Mr. Wood.

Let's see, I can stay in the Lord's church and be treated with respect and kindness and compassion. Or I can leave the Lord's church for Islam and be subjected to the filth and innate debasement of men who by their own mouths admit they are helpless over the power of lust.

Wow! What a hard decision!

mahdi said...

Hello, to both Farhan and David wood.
First off I would like to say that you both are excellent debaters, and this critisizm is not about you personally, it is about the search for the truth, and distinguishing truth from falsehood, if I ever hurt or harm you in this comment I apologize sincerely.
There are some things that I caught that were false on both sides of the debate that I would like to point out, in search of the truth, as well as ask some questions pertaining to some things you have said.
I am going to address my brother Farhan Qureshi first. There are things that you said about the messiah that I think could be improved upon, and some things that you said that need correction.
First thing is about the Jesus Christ the messiah. Jesus Christ the messiah appears to have been crucified, and still appears to have been crucified today. What you did say is that you hinted that you didn't know if he died or not. There is the first problem. Christ appeared to be crucified, but he was not crucified because it was not him that was crucified. It only appeared so because the snitch became a look-alike for his actions. Using historical evidence to prove that it was not the christ that got crucified will land you in a dead end. But, you can use passages about what this look-alike acted like to prove that this guy was not acting like a true prophet, or a divine in that situation. I do admit with my heart that someone was indeed crucified in that time period, which they assumed to be Jesus.
Another Issue was that someone in the Q&A session asked you why the Quran was in order from biggest to smallest, and you had an opportunity to refute that but you did not. For the most part it is, but it isn't completely in that order.

Now for my friend David Wood. You are an intelligent guy, but there were many things that I found that were investigate-able, and I found that there were some things you said that were inaccurate.
Well, first it seems that you reject Unitarians and Mormons! Then you go over to Salafi and Shi'ite beliefs to refute us! You said you completely reject Mormons because you reject their prophet. How, then do you believe in Paul the apostle? Is their prophet wrong and your prophet right? Are Unitarians wrong for rejecting a prophet like you do with Muhammad and Joseph smith?


mahdi said...


Another thing that you said was Surat 7:54 said Allah created the heavens and the earth in 6 days. Surat 25:59 said he created them in 8 days. I think you only did this to confuse people, because when I went to my Quran and searched these two verses, they both said 6! This can not be said that these was a misinterpretation, because clearly 6 and 8 are two different things. Please check your facts clearly before you make a claim like that.
Now, last but not least the very basis of your faith is that it was proven that Jesus died on the cross, and claimed to be divine. Well, this seems like a statement that can be checked. Well, I have said this before, so I will not address this again. What about Jesus claiming Divinity? What does the earliest bible found say about this?

I don't even know if this is even a Muslim person telling this story, but it seems to me that the very basis of the biggest branch of Christianity can be refuted. As for why it isn't on display or on the news right now, why don't you ask yourself this question, What would happen if it was on the news?
And really, if you do investigate it, it turns out that Jesus didn't exactly make the claim of divinity. You don't have to take my word for it. You are basing your entire faith on sayings of people that someone said that someone remembered, that one person checked. I heard that the earliest compiling of your bible was 105 AD! How are you going to trust something that stayed forgotten for so long! The thing about it is that there weren't really many people following Jesus (peace be upon him). Compare that to the strict precautions and all the people working to compile the Quran, that you yourself admitted that it was probably compiled in a good way. You jump to Criticize Muslims because the compiling weren't authentic, but you base your entire compiling on one lone person, Paul. The precautions taken to preserve the bible weren't nearly as great as the precautions taken to preserve the Furqaan (another word for Quran).
For both of my friends David and Farhan, truth-seekers, I wish that this has helped. I have found other things, but can't quote them off the top of my head.
If there is anything that you would like to correct me on, please do so. As-salaamualaikum wa rahmatullahu wabarakaatuhu (peace be with you all, with the blessings and mercy of god).

Richard said...

@traeh "I could imagine Farhan one day leaving Islam, because Farhan is pretty open to reason."

You were correct - Farhan recently renounced Islam.

Vera said...

@Richard- he did?

Adam.J.W.C. said...

May I ask why the rebuttals are unavailable. I want to see/hear them.


1LtMatya said...

Qur'an has a lot of historical, scientific, medical, anatomical, et. proofs. u can find it in the internet. see it urself.

Yankie007 said...

Awesome Job David Wood, you won again the debate. The Qur'an has nothing scientific & medical. About proof, well there are lots of proofs but they only prove that Muhammad is a False Prophet. I never seen such misinterpretation & missrepresentation of the text by Farhan Qureshi!

Amerigramma said...

To Nabeel Qureshi,
I don't know where you got your dictionary but all of the ones that I have accessed say in about equal information: cru·ci·fix·ion/ˌkro͞osəˈfikSHən/
1.The execution of a person by nailing or binding them to a cross.
It has never had anything to do with cursing as you erroneously wrote.
The OT prophesied that the Messiah would be nailed to a cross-& BTW-crucifixion was not practiced at the time of the writing of that prophecy. Real prophecy is when something is predicted, seems improbale at the time but then it comes to pass.

Jesus is Lord said...

@Amerigramma About the prophesies in the Old Testament related to the Crucifixion Of Jesus Christ. Even though it was not practiced at the time that the prophet reveals this, it doesn't matter. God knows everything, He can informed the prophets in advance (that's why, we believe in him because what God revealed to this prophet were true by being fulfilled many years later).

On the Opposite, here is an example of a False Prophet:
Muhammad ate a goat with poison in it. A Jewish women wanted to know if he was a real prophet because a real prophet would of know before taking a deadly poison or it would have any effect (like the Apostle Paul) but instead, he ate some of it and died from it as a result.

From Ibn Sa'd Biography, page 249: The apostle of Allah and his companions ate from it (goat) and said: "I am poisoned." He [Muhammad] said to his Companions, "Hold your hands! because it has informed me that it is poisoned!" They withdrew their hands, but Bishr Ibn al-Bara expired. The apostle of Allah sent for her (Jewess) and asked her, "What induced you to do what you have done?" She replied, "I wanted to know if you are a prophet, in that case it will not harm you and if you are a king, I shall relieve the people of you. He gave orders and she was put to death. The apostle of Allah lived after this three years till in consequence of his pain he passed away

Here are many Prophesies in the Old Testament related to Jesus Christ not (Isa) and the crucifixion:
• Bible Prophecy: Isaiah 53:3 says, "He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not."
• Fulfillment: John 1:10-11 says, "He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him."
• Bible Prophecy: Psalm 41:9 says, "Even my close friend, whom I trusted, he who shared my bread, has lifted up his heel against me."
• Fulfillment: Mark 14:10 says, "Then Judas Iscariot, one of the Twelve, went to the chief priests to betray Jesus to them."
• Bible Prophecy: Zechariah 11:12 says, "I told them, 'If you think it best, give me my pay; but if not, keep it.' So they paid me thirty pieces of silver."
• Fulfillment: Matthew 26:14-16 says, "Then one of the Twelve - the one called Judas Iscariot - went to the chief priests and asked, 'What are you willing to give me if I hand him over to you?' So they counted out for him thirty silver coins."
• Bible Prophecy: Isaiah 53:7 says, "He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth."
• Fulfillment: Matthew 27:41-44 says, "In the same way the chief priests, the teachers of the law and the elders mocked him. 'He saved others,' they said, 'but he can't save himself! He's the King of Israel! […] In the same way the robbers who were crucified with him also heaped insults on him."
• Bible Prophecy:
Old Testament - Isaiah 53:5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. 6 All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. 8 He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? For he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. 9 And he made his grave with the wicked and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. 10 Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed..
• Fulfillment: 1Peter 2:21

Colonel Phoenix said...

@Abdulmu'min, well your "clever" comment got answered, Farhan Qureshi renounced Islam...The joke's on you!