Monday, July 13, 2009

Yahya Seymour and Nabeel on Christian Premier Radio

This is the video of the radio interview with me and Yahya Seymour last week in London.


Anonymous said...

I was very displeased with Yahya's vagueness and lack of substance on these issues. Good job Dr. Nabeel.

Anthony Rogers said...

It shouldn't be missed that Yahya had the integrity to grant several crucial things:

1) the Bible is Trinitarian, especially the Gospel of John (and that unitarians have to twist the Bible to get it to say otherwise, which applies to people like Sami Zaatari, Bassam Zawadi, Osama Abdullah, and many other Muslim apologists who try to use the Bible to support their view.)

2) The historical evidence favors the Christian/Biblical view that Jesus was crucified, died, and was buried.

On another note, when the host mentioned that Bauckham would be on the show in a couple of weeks...Nabeel looked like a kid in a candy store.

Unknown said...

I too was displeased with Yahya's vagueness and lack of substance. You would think if he was going on a radio talk show to debate christian versus muslim then he would have his stuff together. I found Nabeel superb. He knew exactly what he wanted to say, and how to answer and counter anything Yahya came up with. I am proud to say I am also from Virginia. Keep up the good work Nabeel.

Radical Moderate said...

I'm going to disagree with two of the brothers here. I was not disapointed at all with Yahya, to be honest I felt he was refreshing from the islamic point of view.
True he did not have any material references, however I dont think that the format of the radio show called for that level of engagment. It seemed to me to just be a freindly chat.

What I found refreshing is the things that Semper Partus pointed out, as well as when he said American appolgests are more knowlegable then brits :) When it comes to appolegetics.


Bfoali said...

I agree with Fat Man one hundred percent.
In addition I found Yahya was ready to pounce on any statements that held no truth (I.E. that Islam is works based), he truley did a great job on that aspect of mercy and grace.
He also provided a suberp respone to when Nabeel attempted to make Islam seem like a religion ruled by an iron fist.
I think had Yahya gotten his refernces, he would have really embarssed Nabeel.
I felt bad for nabeel when his water ran out though half way through the debate. He looked really thirsty.

Anthony Rogers said...


I think you are twisting Fat Man's words, but I will let him correct you on that.

I thought Yahya was up front and honest, but he didn't make any statement of substance that any Christian would find challenging to answer.

Radical Moderate said...

Just for the record I totaly disagree with Bfoali

Anonymous said...

The Fat man,

I did not say that I was displeased about his lack of references. I was talking about lack of substance in general. Nabeel provided a lot of argumentation and sunstance without even having to cite sources much of the time, however being able to cite scholarly works and positions is good as well.

The fact that yahya did not provide any meaningful argumentation or substance was displeasing. Radio shows centered around interfaith dialog or debate are not simply "friendly chat" but that platform with thouands listening in should be to show that Christianity is true and witnessing to people through any way possible (i.e. arguments, data, sources etc).

So in short, "fat man", apologietics is not about "frienldy chat" and it is not a game. It is about getting to the root of the issues and witnessing, while exposing the falsehood of islam using argumentation.

I think you are confusing apologetics with a tea party.

Bryant said...

I think that Yahya's performance was strong. When I watch Muslim-Christian dialog, I try to put myself into the shoes of reasonable Muslims in an attempt to hear what they would hear in a debate. I believe that reasonable Muslims would be pleased with Yahya's performance.

However, to a Christian who is knowledgeable about his faith, there are clear semantical issues in this entire debate.

Muslims believe that it is faith and works that save you. Protestants hold to Sola Fide and Sola Gratia. We are justified in the sight of God by grace alone through faith alone. If a Christian believes that he is saved by believing in Christ AND having his good deeds outweigh his bad deeds, he has fallen away from grace. However, Muslims believe that their good deeds need to outweigh their bad ones. That is the big difference in salvation between Christians and Muslims.

This is why we say that Islam is a works based religion.

Bryant said...

On another note, I really don't like the Unbelievable Radio program. The host took 21 minutes before getting into the serious issues; and his questions meander from topic to topic too quickly. He knows that he only has an hour or so (including commercials) to converse. He should quickly get into the meaty issues and sit back and watch them debate. However, I feel like I hear his voice entirely too much.

Just my opinion.

Anonymous said...

Yahya's comments that early Christians did not believe in the trinity or in His divinity are a joke. His ignorance and misrepresentation of Catholicism is equally astounding. I dont believe his claim that he ever knew the christian faith.

“We have also as a Physician the Lord our God, Jesus the Christ, the only-begotten Son and Word, before time began, but who afterwards became also man, of Mary the virgin."
Ignatius of Antioch, To the Ephesians, 7 (A.D. 110).

"For if you had understood what has been written by the prophets, you would not have denied that He was God, Son of the only, unbegotten, unutterable God."
Justin Martyr, Dialogue with Trypho, 121 (A.D. 155).

"God was in the beginning; but the beginning, we have been taught, is the power of the Logos. For the Lord of the universe, who is Himself the necessary ground of all being, inasmuch as no creature was yet in existence, was alone; but inasmuch as He was all power, Himself the necessary ground of things visible and invisible, with Him were all things; with Him, by Logos-power, the Logos Himself also, who was in Him, subsists. And by His simple will the Logos springs forth; and the Logos, not coming forth in vain, becomes the first-begotten work of the Father. Him (the Logos) we know to be the beginning of the world. But He came into being by participation, not by abscission; for what is cut off is separated from the original substance, but that which comes by participation, making its choice of function, does not render him deficient from whom it is taken. For just as from one torch many fires are lighted, but the light of the first torch is not lessened by the kindling of many torches, so the Logos, coming forth from the Logos-power of the Father, has not divested of the Logos-power Him who begat Him."
Tatian the Syrian, Oration Against the Greeks, 5 (c. A.D. 175).

Radical Moderate said...

KeithTruth said...

So in short, "fat man", apologietics is not about "frienldy chat" and it is not a game. It is about getting to the root of the issues and witnessing, while exposing the falsehood of islam using argumentation.

I think you are confusing apologetics with a tea party.

My only response is

"Like a reed I will bend. like thunder I am silent. I will move like a mountain and like water I am still"

Hogan Elijah Hagbard said...

We have consider however that this was not a debate.

I have to say that Nabeel did a good job here. Nabeel certainly is a world-class debator and I hope and pray that he will embark on a fulltime apologetics ministry in future.

As to Yahya, I have to say that he showed remarkable integrity in this program and I gained a lot of respect for him in this interview. God bless you Yahya.

Fernando said...

Brother Bryant saide: «If a Christian believes that he is saved by believing in Christ AND having his good deeds outweigh his bad deeds, he has fallen away from grace»... yep: I know whate you mean; justte another day some muslim I spoke withe (a good friende off mine, I must say) saide thate good workes are also grace since they are a gifte from allah... butt I thinke he twisted some ideas: for him those workes are a surplus to the grace, not a consequence off thate grace...

CoramDeo said...


Nabeel certainly is on his way up, but he is not yet a world class debater. Let him age a little, let him gain more experience on the world stage. The main thing is that his heart is right towards God. His heart is tender. Like David's.

A world class debater? Ravi Zacharias would qualify. R.C. Sproul in former years. Nabeel has a few years to go. Long live Nabeel!

Fernando said...

Hi Irenaeus of New York... good to see you arounde here... I guess you mighte wantte to read this book (Larry W. Hurtado, Lord Jesus Christ: Devotion to Jesus in Earliest Christianity, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003) thate expresses the same opinions you presented in your poste! Perhaps you alreadie know itt, neber the less I thinke itt desearves a good new reading... good bless!!!

Mike said...

Yahya seemed like a squirrl on a road way not sure of where to go and always trying to find a hole in Nabeel's background, without success, I found. Good job Nabeel.

nma said...

Byrant said...
However, Muslims believe that their good deeds need to outweigh their bad ones.

So all they need to do is 51 per cent good and they are allowed to do 49 percent bad. Lucky devils!

Anonymous said...

Thanks Fernando. I may get around to reading that sometime in the future.

As for the comments on works and faith... I am curious what the muslims viewpoint on this is. Yayha and Nabeel seem to be at odds on this.

I know historically, they have not been known for charitable works.

But Yayha made an excellent point about the Epistle of James...

I assume he was refering to the following...

James 2:26 "For even as the body without the spirit is dead; so also faith without works is dead."

Fernando said...

Brother Irenaeus of New York... yes, I think you're righte on the quote you presented about James... faithe is the core to the justification, butt no one can transforme thate grace from God in an apathic and non compromised life thate muste emerge from thate faithe... not thate those workes "per se" manages salvation off any kind separeted from the faith, butt thate those workes -- who I also beliebe to bee a grace from God since we cannot do anything without His help -- are the "seal" off a truthfull and living faithe... God blees you Irenaeus!

Ari said...

Interesting video and I believe both went well. However, Yahya came across as rather petty on two main points:

1. The response to the issue of Christology and early Christian devotion to Jesus. Repeatedly saying that Nabeel was simply 'name dropping'; that only conservative evangelicals hold to something other than evolutionary Christology which is simply not true; and undermining Nabeel with the 'I didn't go to a conservative apologetics school like Nabeel'ad hominems lost a lot of points.

2. Making Nabeel come across as a former pseudo-Muslim who has nothing in common with Sunni or Shia as he was an Ahmadiyya.

Lothair Of Lorraine said...

I think that Yahya and Nabeel didn't discuss the substantial differences within and relating to the topic of 'Grace'. Yahya seemed to be willing to eisegetically sketch Unmerited Grace into his reading of selected Quranic verses, which he was unable to cite, or even place in a theological context.

Grace in Islam has far more to do with temporal and finanical rewards that are reaped from the spoils of war, than any notion of 'justification'. The god of Islam rather whimsically 'bestows' grace as a divine indulgance, rather than a loving gift.

Unknown said...

I was interested in this dialogue as I felt that Yahya exhibited a candor as a convert to Islam that I find generally uncommon to muslim's by heritage.
I saw on Yahya's face a look of strain when describing his shifting sand position on the crucifixion of Christ. He admitted openly that the facts seemingly were on the side of the Bible's claim that Jesus was crucified, but that he chose instead to believe that the Qran's unsubstantiated version was true.This I saw as a tremendously weak moment, for a Muslim apologist who moments later says he does not believe in blind faith! I wonder if this is not indeed for Yahya still a stone in the shoe of his faith.For certainly it takes Jonestown willingness to believe, that a good god would, for unknown purposes, (so that a better revelation could come? One he felt like supporting next time?) dupe true followers of his own prophet Isa,and promote a lie.
The Gospel recounting of the resurrection story, and the supportive documents surrounding those events, have the authority of eyewitness accounts, secular writings, and the springing up of groups of first century Christians "sworn to be truthful" going to their deaths for claiming Christ as Lord. (as described in the writings of Tacitus).
The story that Yahya is stuck believing, in his rejection of the facts of the crucifixion, is one that requires strict blind faith, and a strict refusal to examine on grounds of logic, how the "merciful," "majestic", "all knowing" deity,that he must by his own scriptures confess perpetrates and stoops to a hoax, is a the god of all TRUTH and power.
I think a great topic for debate would be the argument for a Good God based on the respective accounts of the Crucifixion in the Q'ran and the Bible. The Bible has an airtight case in Scripture for an Astonishing, Breathtakingly Good God, as presented to man in the accounts of Calvary. The oppposition would have lots of trouble with their version, to say the least.
I thank God for Nabeel, and his ministry team. I will remember to pray sincerely for Yahya.