Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The Angel of the LORD vs. Yahya Snow - Part One

Yahya Snow has ventured to “refute” Sam Shamoun’s case that a particular “angel”, i.e. the Angel of the Lord (Heb. Mal’ak Yahweh), is divine, one of the persons of the Godhead. Over the course of several posts I will respond to Yahya’s article for Sam.

To begin with, it should be remembered that unitarianism as opposed to Trinitarianism is the view that God is a uni-personal rather than a tri-personal being. Islamic Tawheed is one (and the worst) of many versions of the former; Christianity uniquely proclaims the latter.

This is important to keep in mind for the following reason: whereas on unitarian assumptions one wouldn’t expect to find in the Bible distinctions drawn between multiple divine persons, this is just what would be expected on Trinitarian assumptions.

The first verse of John’s Gospel is a good illustration of the point. According to John’s Gospel:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
If the author of this passage was a unitarian, it would not be surprising for him to say “the Word was with God”, which he in fact does. But it also wouldn’t be surprising on Trinitarian assumptions, for Trinitarians also believe the Word was with God. However, that is not all the passage says; it also tells us “the Word was God”. This additional statement changes everything for the unitarian, but the Trinitarian is left unaffected by it: it is exactly what would be expected if the author of this passage was Trinitarian. And just as it would be incredibly inept for a unitarian to reply, “But the passage could not teach that the Word was God, because he could not be God and be with God at the same time”, since this is just what Trinitarians believe and is precisely what the passage says, so it would also be incredibly inept for a unitarian to approach similar phenomena in the Old Testament in the same way, as we will in fact find in the case of Yahya’s would-be rebuttal.

When we turn to the Old Testament passages that speak of the Angel of the Lord, we find that they upset and over-topple unitarian expectations in exactly the same way. They do so by identifying the Angel as God while at the same time distinguishing Him from another person who is identified as God. Consider as an example the first occasion in the Bible where this phrase is used – Genesis 16, which recounts what happened after Hagar fled from Sarai.

Now the angel of the LORD found her by a spring of water in the wilderness, by the spring on the way to Shur. He said, "Hagar, Sarai's maid, where have you come from and where are you going?" And she said, "I am fleeing from the presence of my mistress Sarai." Then the angel of the LORD said to her, "Return to your mistress, and submit yourself to her authority." Moreover, the angel of the LORD said to her, "I will greatly multiply your descendants so that they will be too many to count." The angel of the LORD said to her further, "Behold, you are with child, and you will bear a son; and you shall call his name Ishmael, because the LORD has given heed to your affliction." He will be a wild donkey of a man, his hand will be against everyone, and everyone's hand will be against him; and he will live to the east of all his brothers." Then she called the name of the LORD who spoke to her, "You are a God who sees"; for she said, "Have I even remained alive here after seeing Him?"
Since Yahya believes Muhammad was a descendant of Hagar through her son Ishmael, he should pay particular attention to what this passage says (and not just the later verses in the passage that say Ishmael will be a wild donkey of a man).

In the first place, the phrase “the angel of the LORD”, as well as the fact that the Angel speaks of the LORD in the third person in verse eleven (“…the LORD has given heed to your affliction”), seems clearly to distinguish the Angel from “the LORD”.

Secondly, at the same time, this same passage also identifies the Angel as LORD. Not only does the Angel issue imperatives to Hagar and conduct the whole conversation with an air of authority that exudes divinity, but the Angel promises that He will do the same thing for her that God promised to do for Abraham through Sarah, saying, “I will greatly multiply your descendants so that they will be too many to count.”

Finally, while all of this may be lost on those who think Muhammad was a descendant of Hagar, it wasn’t lost on Hagar herself, for “Then she called the name of the LORD who spoke to her, ‘You are a God who sees’; for she said, “Have I even remained alive here after seeing Him?”

Passing over the mention of the Angel of the Lord in Genesis 21:8-20, where similar observations could be made, what is said in Genesis 22 about the Angel of the Lord is particularly instructive. After Abraham goes to the place where God commanded him to take Isaac and offer him as a sacrifice, we read:

When they reached the place God had told him about, Abraham built an altar there and arranged the wood on it. He bound his son Isaac and laid him on the altar, on top of the wood. Then he reached out his hand and took the knife to slay his son. But the angel of the LORD called out to him from heaven, "Abraham! Abraham!" "Here I am," he replied. "Do not lay a hand on the boy," he said. "Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you fear God, because you have not withheld from me your son, your only son." Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son. So Abraham called that place The LORD Will Provide. And to this day it is said, "On the mountain of the LORD it will be provided." The angel of the LORD called to Abraham from heaven a second time and said, "I swear by myself, declares the LORD, that because you have done this and have not withheld your son, your only son, I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me."
As in Genesis 16, this passage at once distinguishes the Angel from God and identifies Him as God.

That He is distinct from God is evident once again by his very title, i.e. the Angel of the LORD, as well as by the fact that he speaks in verse twelve of God in the third person (“Now I know that you fear God”).

That He is also God is evident not only from the fact that He speaks as God (“…you have not withheld from Me your only son…” [vs. 12]; “I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky [vs. 17]; and “…because you have obeyed Me” [vs. 18]), but because of what it pointedly says in verses 15-16: “The angel of the LORD called to Abraham from heaven a second time and said, "I swear BY MYSELF, declares the LORD,…”

In terms of the unitarian/Trinitarian debate, only Trinitarianism is consistent both with the fact that the Angel is distinguished from God and the fact that He speaks as God and is identified as God in the above (and many other) passages.

Yahya’s failure to understand all this is openly exposed in his response to virtually every one of the passages from Sam he tries to deal with. He somehow thinks the mere fact that the Angel is distinct from another person called God proves that He cannot also be God.

For example, Yahya says Zechariah 1:12-13 “shows the angel of the Lord communicating with God; the angel asks God a question and God answers the angel. Clearly this passage shows the angel not to be God as they are clearly shown to be distinct entities.”

He does the same thing with Numbers 22:31, saying:

“Shamoun fails to look further down in the chapter; after this event, the author identifies this angel as “the angel of the Lord” and not as “God” or “the Lord” (22:32 and 35) thus showing the author (said to be Moses) did not believe this angel to be God…”
We get more of the same on Zechariah 3:1-2:

"If you read further on in the chapter, the angel actually speaks and the author said to be Zechariah) identifies the angel as “the angel”. Surely if the angel was the Lord it would have been addressed as “the Lord” rather than “the angel”. So we notice the author draws a distinction between “the angel” and “the Lord”, thus to two cannot be the same!.... Essentially, Zechariah does not claim the angel to be God but draws a distinction showing the two are not the same."
And Zechariah 3:4:

"Shamoun misses another verse in this chapter which proves that this angel is simply an agent of God and not God himself, verse 6 shows the angel QUOTING the Lord and delivering the Lord’s message by saying “this is what the Lord Almighty says:…"
On Exodus 23:20, Yahya says:

“Thus we realise God sends the angel, therefore the angel cannot possibly be God! Shamoun misses this as this clearly shows this angel is not God!”….

“Clearly, in this passage, God sends the angel and speaks of the angel as a separate being (a creation of God). This angel is sent BY God, thus cannot possibly be God. Pure logic! Shamoun misses the verse and misses the logic due to his desperation to convince us of his personal beliefs.”

The fact that God speaks of this angel as a distinct entity should be enough to realise that this angel is not God.
All of this completely misses the point at issue, for in each of the passages where the Angel is distinguished from God He is also identified as God, showing that the prophetic authors were not unitarians. In effect, what Yahya is doing is reading his unitarian assumptions into the text rather than taking everything the texts say into account to see if they are consistent with everything unitarianism predicts we should find. Since Yahya assumes that God is uni-personal, any passage that distinguishes God from the Angel automatically rules out the divinity of the Angel as a matter of “pure logic”, as Yahya said in one of the quotes above. But it only follows logically if Yahya’s starting assumption, i.e. God is uni-personal, is true. Only if that assumption is true does the conclusion that the angel is not God follow from the observation that the Angel is distinguished from God. But Yahya’s starting assumption is the very point at issue, and this means that all of Yahya’s arguments on this score commit the fallacy of begging the question and reasoning in a circle, something we have seen from him before (here).

45 comments:

Anthony Rogers said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
aussie christian said...

Well, considering that yahya has refused to debate thus proving his lack of academic/religous credentials, his argument is mute.

He has only proved he can waffle on about some dribble without backing his claims, thus his points hold no water, no substance, and therefore are refuted by his refusal to debate or defend his stance.

nice one yahya, but try again.

leviMichael said...

"The Angel of the LORD" is clearly Jesus before the incarnation; every1 in the OT testament seems to worship this Angel!

I'm going to say sumthings that may seem controversial; but before I do, let me state the ffg:

Jesus is Creator GOD; He is equal to the Father (in EVERY respect), Who is equal to The Spirit; Jesus is ETERNAL; He is the "I AM"; in other words, I believe in the apostles creed!!!!

ok...

1) Nowhere in the Bible does it say that the "Archangel" was created.
2) Archangel means the First Angel.
3) Michael means “the same what God is”.
4) Michael did similar things that Jesus does/did.
5) Michael is also given similar titles that Jesus has.

my conclusion is: Michael is another title for Jesus; He is "The Angel of the LORD".

we believe the Bible is the only authority, so if we ask the question: "Who is Michael?", you will come to realize that there's more to Michael than meets the eye!

GreekAsianPanda said...

But why is it not possible that the Angel of the LORD is quoting God?

Nakdimon said...

Nice article Semper.

You know, sometimes, when I read responses such as those of Yahya, I cannot take them seriously, since the way they argue (in circles) is something that is so apparent it is hard to see how they themselves cannot spot their error. I sometimes reason with my 9 YEAR OLD SON and point the same fallacies out to him that the Muslims make all the time when he utilizes circular reasoning. I love to point him out his erroneous reasoning and, as stubborn as he is (just like his dad) he doesn't want to admit error initially, but later on has to give way.

Bottom line is that even my son at the AGE OF NINE (!!!!) can see that his reasoning is fallacious and then corrects his error. He can recognize circular argument when it's pointed out to him. But Muslims CANNOT see it.

What Yahya is doing in this case is obvious and I want to demonstrate something doing the same thing that Yahya does, namely, working from your own presupposition as a given and then imposing your views on a text by using that part of the text that seems to support your premise if you ignore the rest of overall testimony. (can you still follow?)

Suppose that we would claim that Muhammad was actually a Christian and preached Trinitarianism, but that his original message was lost and Abu Bakr, Umar and Uthman usurped the power and corrupted the message (by collecting all the existing manuscripts, burning them and replacing them with their own Quran). Suppose we would therefore presuppose the original Trinitarian message of Muhammad and claim that whenever Allah speaks of "We" and "Us" and "Our", it actually refers to the Father, Son and Spirit and that all the passages that speak about Allah having no Son and that Allah is alone are later corruptions. What would Muslims think about this reasoning?

I know that my reasoning is flawed, had this been my position, but this is exactly how Muslims reason. It is not even childish, it's pathetic!

Nakdimon

Anthony Rogers said...

Greekasianpanda,

Who is your question directed to?

If it is for Yahya, I would word it this way: "How can the Angel be God, as I have shown, and quote God, as you grant, if God is a uni-personal being?"

hugh watt said...

LeviMichael. Fair point you made. Consider a few things. 'Micah' has the same meaning as Michael. In Jude, when contending over Moses' body Michael said to Satan, "the Lord rebuke you."
Having said that, yes, you may be correct.
Give me more on points 4+5.

hugh watt said...

I'm reading Joshua now. The Angel Who appeared to him as 'a Man,' was worshiped by Joshua. there's more that could said about this. I'll just say this 'Man,' was also uncreated. So i see your point.

Verumi said...

Off-topic:

A political candidate tells it like it is: Tennessee: The anti-sharia candidate talks jihad

ben malik said...

leviMichael, your view is one held by some Trinitarians and therefore is not unacceptable to orthodox Trinitarianism. However, here is why I have a problem with Michael being Jesus. Please read this carefully:

So he said, "Do you know why I have come to you? Soon I will return to fight against the prince of Persia, and when I go, the prince of Greece will come; 21 but first I will tell you what is written in the Book of Truth. (No one supports me against them except Michael, your prince. And as for me, in the first year of Darius the Mede, I stood up to confirm and strengthen him.)" Daniel 10:20-21, 11:1

The angel tells Daniel that he stood up to strengthen/help Michael. It seems unlikely that the angel is saying that he came to strengthen and help Darius since in the context the angel refers to the prince of Persia who comes to fight him which must refer to the evil spirit influencing Darius. So why would the angel help a pagan king who is already being helped by a wicked rebellious spirit?

It seems more likely that the angel is talking about helping and strengthening Michael. With that said how can Michael be Jesus if he needs an angel to help him?

So what do you think levi?

minoria said...

I was worried by Hugh's comment about Rifqa Bary and checked at atlasshrugs.com.There is still daner,we must do all we can to prevent her from being deported.I think he present lawyer is a failure,he has been lied by the adverse lawyer every time.Rifqa can and should get a better one.Pray that will happen.

Lupus el Lobo said...

All of this completely misses the point at issue, for in each of the passages where the Angel is distinguished from God He is also identified as God, showing that the prophetic authors were not unitarians.

Wouldn't it be more in accordance with Christian theology if he was distinguished from the father but also identified as god?

Otherwise the only thing you have is a contradiction that can only be resolved if we regard the passages identifying the angel with god as figurative.

Lupus el Lobo said...

Actually the doctrine of Christophany is just a roundabout way of resolving the problem for Christians that other beings have been identified with god in the OT and NT.
That other beings explicitly both in the OT and NT are identified makes it difficult for christians to maintain the uniqueness of christ.
How do Christians resolve this thorny problem? Well by either applying a figurative translation or by identifying the specific being with Jesus (in this case the Angel of the Lord)
As Augustinus said:

"Elsewhere in the Bible when a prophet speaks it is yet said to be the Lord who speaks, not of course because the prophet is the Lord but because the Lord is in the prophet; and so in the same way when the Lord condescends to speak through the mouth of a prophet or an angel, it is the same as when he speaks by a prophet or apostle, and the angel is correctly termed an angel if we consider him himself, but equally correctly is he termed 'the Lord' because God dwells in him." He concludes: "It is the name of the indweller, not of the temple." And a little further on: "It seems to me that we shall most correctly say that our forefathers recognized the Lord in the angel,"

Fernando said...

Someone saide:

«How do Christians resolve this thorny problem?»

whate thorny problem?

minoria said...

The case of the Angel of the Lord proves the Jewish scribes were FAITHFUL to the text,NOT corrupting it.Even when the text went against their ideas.That shows the Koran is wrong about the Jews corrupting their own holy scripture.

EASTER
This year the Orthodox and Catholic-Protestant Easter coincided,on the same day.Also to inform others about Passover,I recently found out that one custom in the Passover seder or meal is:
1.To have an EMPTY CHAIR for the arrival of ELIJAH
2.To leave the DOOR OPEN,so Elijah can come in before the Messiah arrives.
It's very important for Christians or "Messianics"(I like that name better,and it means the same thing)to know about Judaism,its history,great figures beyond the OT,etc.

hugh watt said...

Minoria, i've asked Muslims to show me one place in the Quran where it says 'the Bible/Scriptures have been corrupted!' They've yet to show me. So i ask here now for any Muslim to give a Quranic ref' where it says God's Book has been 'corrupted.'

David Wood said...

Hugh,

Even though the Qur'an treats the Bible as reliable, there is a clear reference to a holy book being completely shredded by unbelievers in 15:91. Of course, it's the Qur'an that's shredded. So as it turns out, according to the Qur'an, the Bible is in better shape than the Qur'an!

Qur'an 15:91--"Those who made the Quran into shreds."

hugh watt said...

S:15.90 (Of just such wrath)
As We sent down
On those who divided
(Scripture into arbitrary parts)."
There were no Quran scripture then!

Commentary (C) no'2013. "The commentators differ as to the precise significance of verses 90 and 91. Are the persons referred to in the 2 verses the same, or different? And who were they? I adopt the view, for which there is good authority, that the 2 classes of persons were different but similar. Verse 90, i think, refers to the Jews and Christians, who took out of Scripture what suited them,' and ignored or rejected the rest:(THAT'S A BIT RICH) S:2.85,101."

S:15.91 Who have made the Quran into parts (i.e. believed in one part and disbelieved in the other).[Tafsir At-Tabari]

S:15.91(So also on such)
As have made Qur-ān
Into shreds (as they please).

(C)2014. The Makkan Pagans, in the early days of Islam, in order to dishonour and ridicule the Quran," (THERE WAS NO QURAN AT THIS POINT),
"..divided what was so far revealed, into bits, and apportioned them to people coming on pilgrimage to Makkah by different routes, slandering and abusing the Prophet of Allah."

So, did they make copies and apportion them to these people or what!?

Explanation of Tafsir al-Tustari S15.91
His words, Exalted is He:

Those who have reduced the Recitation (Qur'ān) to parts.

He [Sahl] said:

The outward meaning of the verse is as the commentators have explained. However, its inner meaning concerns the rules (aḥkām) that God, Exalted is He, sent down regarding our hearing, sight, and heart [s] (fu'ād), [referred to] in His words, Exalted is He: Indeed , the hearing, the sight and the heart, each of these it will be asked [17:36]. Thus, they turned away from acting by it, inclining towards the demands of their natural self (nafs al-ṭ ab ')

David Wood said...

Hugh,

You missed the point. According to the Qur'an, the Bible is God's word, and God's word can't be corrupted. But Muslims have to believe that the Bible has been corrupted (since it contradicts the Qur'an). Thus, they stretch and mangle the interpretation of Qur'an verses in order to justify their belief that the Bible has been corrupted.

But if they're going to point to any random verse in the Qur'an that can by some amazing stretch of the imagination be thought to imply that the Bible is corrupt, then they have to apply this method to their own book as well. And the strongest word in the Qur'an used to describe what has been done to a book is the word "shredded" in 15:91. So if Muslims want to say that the Bible has been corrupted based on some verse of the Qur'an, fine. The Qur'an has been shredded.

Lupus el Lobo said...

Wood wrote:

You missed the point. According to the Qur'an, the Bible is God's word, and God's word can't be corrupted. But Muslims have to believe that the Bible has been corrupted (since it contradicts the Qur'an). Thus, they stretch and mangle the interpretation of Qur'an verses in order to justify their belief that the Bible has been corrupted.

Lupus replied:
Who said that the original Injeel has been corrupted. The current NT is a human invention. The Quran speaks about the original Injeel as an inspiration from God to Jesus. The current NT is in an entirely different form i.e a collection of sayings from Paul and hersay about the life and sayings of Jesus.
There is thus reason to believe that the current NT is not a corrupted version of the Injeel but an independent scripture altogether.

David Wood said...

Nice try, Lupus. The Qur'an affirms a book the Christians had "between their hands." Now where is this book, if it isn't the New Testament? Please tell us the name of this book and describe its contents. If you're just going to say, "Well, no one knows," then surely I can say, "Muhammad affirmed the Qur'an, but the Qur'an has been lost, and the Qur'an we have today is a book of lies and deception."

Lupus el Lobo said...

Wood wrote:

Nice try, Lupus. The Qur'an affirms a book the Christians had "between their hands." Now where is this book, if it isn't the New Testament? Please tell us the name of this book and describe its contents. If you're just going to say, "Well, no one knows," then surely I can say, "Muhammad affirmed the Qur'an, but the Qur'an has been lost, and the Qur'an we have today is a book of lies and deception."

Lupus replied:
Well please tell us where are the numerous different Christian holy manuscripts that are no longer extant?

David Wood said...

Nice try again, Lupus. Muhammad preached, in the seventh century, that the Christians had the Gospel "between their hands." We have entire copies of the Bible from before, during, and after Muhammad's time. Either Muhammad was referring to the New Testament, or he was referring to another book. If he was referring to the New Testament, then Islam is false. If he was referring to another book, please tell us what this other book was. What were its contents? Where are the manuscripts?

hugh watt said...

David Wood said...Hugh,
You missed the point. According to the Qur'an, the Bible is God's word, and God's word can't be corrupted."

I assure you, i have not missed the point. Everything you've said since to Lupus, is what i would have said.

So i ask again to any Muslim, and this has massive implications for their eternal future, prove from the Quran where it says the Bible has been corrupted, not conjecture!
One of Islam's main arguments against the Bible is based upon conjecture.

hugh watt said...

Lupus, according to (c)no'2013,2014, Jews and Christians were taking things, "i think, refers to the Jews and Christians, who took out of Scripture what suited them,' and ignored or rejected the rest." What Scripture?

(C)2014. The Makkan Pagans, in the early days of Islam, in order to dishonour and ridicule the Quran," (THERE WAS NO QURAN AT THIS POINT),
"..divided what was so far revealed, into bits, and apportioned them to people coming on pilgrimage to Makkah by different routes, slandering and abusing the Prophet of Allah."

He then conjectures that 2 peoples are referred to here. Could they apportion 'Scripture' that did not exist then!?

Lupus el Lobo said...

Nice try again, Lupus. Muhammad preached, in the seventh century, that the Christians had the Gospel "between their hands." We have entire copies of the Bible from before, during, and after Muhammad's time. Either Muhammad was referring to the New Testament, or he was referring to another book. If he was referring to the New Testament, then Islam is false. If he was referring to another book, please tell us what this other book was. What were its contents? Where are the manuscripts?

Do you have all the different copies of the entire Bible written before, during and after the prophet?
For instance deadsea scrolls weren't found until the 20th century. Other previously unknown christian scriptures have been found as well.
There are also historical sources that say that there were remnants of a Jewish sect who followed the law and believed in Jesus in 11th and 12th century arabia(Abd-Aljabbar and Rabbi Benjamin of Tudela and Muhammad al-Sahrastani).

leviMichael said...

@ ben malik...i'm not a Bible scholar...

my only response is...Michael could be the image of the Son to the angels as Jesus is to man; Jesus also needed strengthening by the angels.

It could be possible that even the angels have not seen the full Glory of God...

b4 adam and eve sinned, we see that God appeared to them in Human form (He walked in the garden); in other words, it could be true that even sinless creatures have not seen God in all His glory.

there are so many scriptures that are more direct concerning the identity of who Michael is, scriptures that u r aware of.

this is an interesting topic for believers...it's not a salvation issue, but an interesting topic non the less.

david has said on numerous occasions that we sud go with clear passages and interpret the not-so-clear passages with the clear ones; i tend to agree with this principle.

my only hope is that Christians can address this topic without calling people who believe this cults or demon-possessed. LOL.

i know that the JWs also believe this; although they r a cult, we sudn't throw out the baby with the bath water.

thx 4 taking time to respond to my post...

God bless u, brother!

leviMichael said...

@ hugh watt...here's a link that may answer ur questions...
http://straighttestimony.blogspot.com/2007/12/is-jesus-also-michael.html

ben malik said...

my only response is...Michael could be the image of the Son to the angels as Jesus is to man; Jesus also needed strengthening by the angels.

The only problem is that angel helping or strengthening Jesus takes place while Jesus is on earth where he experienced the limitations of being a true flesh and blood human being. However, the Daniel text is referring to what takes place in the spiritual realm where Michael is in his glorious state. So I don't see how Jesus being strengthened by angels explains Daniel 11:1.

A said...

hugh,

Where did you find Tafseer At-Tabari in English? I've been looking for it but was told only a meager one volume has been translated.

hugh watt said...

Levi, tried but could not get on site you gave.
Forget what J.W's believe, even their heresies are not original.
Moses could not see the FULL glory of God, Exodus 33.
Levi, we embrace heretics around here, so,...:-)

A, i'll get back to you on that. Thought i had it in front of me but...Bear with me.

hugh watt said...

A, Tafsir at- Tabari. Tafsir al- Tustari. There's more when you go there.

Fernando said...

Lupus: whate are you talking when you sai: Other previously unknown christian scriptures have been found as well... are you mixing, wiilingly or not, scriptures withe texts, and christians withe pseudo -christians?

Lupus el Lobo said...

Fernando wrote:
Lupus: whate are you talking when you sai: Other previously unknown christian scriptures have been found as well... are you mixing, wiilingly or not, scriptures withe texts, and christians withe pseudo -christians?

Lupus replied:
Valid question. I'm referring to scriptures. Of course most scriptures that don't agree with orthodox christianity would be called pseudo-christian.

David Wood said...

Lupus,

How can you not get this? Muhammad affirmed the book that the Christians had "between their hands." We have 5800 manuscripts of the New Testament, all of which present the same message. If you're saying that Muhammad was talking about some other book, then the burden of proof is on you to show us this other book (and to tell us why the Qur'an commands us to go to a book that no one can seem to find).

If all you're going to do is say, "Well, you don't have every manuscript of the New Testament, so it's possible that one of the manuscripts says something different," this cuts both ways. Do you have every manuscript of the Qur'an ever written? No? Well then, I say that the unknown copies of the Qur'an were the originals, and that they proclaim Jesus' deity, death, and resurrection.

hugh watt said...

I say that the Quran has plagiarism all over it. But get this, it can be proven.
Who were the first Muslims to concoct that story anyway? Did Muhammad say it? His early followers? Who? Why? When? Where? What was it that started this? These Q's must be answered. Prove the Bible has been corrupted Muslims. Do so first from the Quran.

Lupus el Lobo said...

Wood wrote:
If all you're going to do is say, "Well, you don't have every manuscript of the New Testament, so it's possible that one of the manuscripts says something different," this cuts both ways. Do you have every manuscript of the Qur'an ever written? No? Well then, I say that the unknown copies of the Qur'an were the originals, and that they proclaim Jesus' deity, death, and resurrection.

Lupus replied:
Who said anything about the New Testament. Look at the listings of scriptures of the Church fathers. How many of the heterodox scriptures have been lost?
A case in point is the Gospel of Thomas. It is likely that other heterodox writings might show up that confirm the teachings of the Quran.

Mr Wood, please tell us how many previously unknown completely different whole manuscripts or only parts (just in case you argue that hey wait a minute Gospel of Thomas is not a complete NT version)of the Quran have been found over the last 1500 years?

Don't come dragging with the Uthman-burnt-all-the-variant-qurans?
That cuts both ways to.

David Wood said...

Lupus,

I'm finding it incredibly difficult to believe that you still don't get this point. Let's try again.

According to the Qur'an, Christians had the Gospel during Muhammad's lifetime. This would mean that the Christians possessed this Gospel for six centuries, from the first century down to the time of Muhammad. They would have passed this book down and made countless copies, to such an extent that Muhammad's listeners would have immediately known which book the Qur'an is referring to.

Now, either (1) the Qur'an is referring to a book that still exists in some form, or (2) the Qur'an is referring to a book that has disappeared without a trace. If you believe (1), please show us which book the Qur'an is referring to. If you believe (2), don't you find it strange that a book was copied for six centuries and that it spread across the Middle East, and yet we don't have a shred of evidence that it ever existed??? (And please don't say something like "Oh, but the Gospel of Thomas . . ." The Gospel of Thomas comes from the second century; it was only popular for a short time among a group of Gnostics, and we do have copies of it. You have to explain how a book that was widely used among Christians for six centuries disappeared without a trace.)

hugh watt said...

Notice what Lupus is doing? Instead of answering the main Q, Quranic ref' that says the Bible has been corrupted, it switches to; Christians have some explaining to do! How weak Islam shows itself to be. If that one thing cannot be proven everything about Islam/Allah/Quran/Muhammad, falls down. This, Muslims know is what's at stake here. Watch as they continue to employ the same tactic.

S:4.31. The Unbelievers say:
"We shall neither believe
In this scripture nor in (any)
That (came) before it."
Couldst thou but see when
The wrong-doers will be made
To stand before their Lord,
Throwing back the word (of blame)

To believe in what came before the Quran, does not intelligent reasoning mean knowing what it says! Turn the tables Muslims. Would you not ask the same if the Quran came first and any accusers would not/ could not produce evidence of corruption from their authoritative source? This is not an unreasonable request.

When Muhammad could not defeat his opponents intellectually he used brute force. This is Islam!

Lupus el Lobo said...

Wood wrote:
Now, either (1) the Qur'an is referring to a book that still exists in some form, or (2) the Qur'an is referring to a book that has disappeared without a trace. If you believe (1), please show us which book the Qur'an is referring to. If you believe (2), don't you find it strange that a book was copied for six centuries and that it spread across the Middle East, and yet we don't have a shred of evidence that it ever existed??? (And please don't say something like "Oh, but the Gospel of Thomas . . ." The Gospel of Thomas comes from the second century; it was only popular for a short time among a group of Gnostics, and we do have copies of it. You have to explain how a book that was widely used among Christians for six centuries disappeared without a trace.)

Lupus replied:
Who said that the book was widespread over Arabia? You didn't have books in every home in those days. There were alot of christian groups that were persecuted by both the Jews and the Orthodox Christians. How many complete NT manuscripts dated at before the 7th century do we have today?
The Gospel of Thomas found in Nag Hammadi is dated at around 340. Moreover, the Injeel that the Quran talks about in what language do you think it was?

Fernando said...

Lupus: whate scriptures do you think habe been found lattely? thanks...

no: persons who adopted christians elements and made them articulate withe antient gnostic beliefs are no Christians whatesoever... thanks...

David Wood said...

It's like I'm talking to a wall.

Let's review, Lupus. The Qur'an affirms a true revelation that the Christians possessed in Arabia during his time. This would mean, wouldn't it, that this book was passed down for six centuries, and that many copies had been made? Do you understand this point at all? If a book lasts for six centuries, then people are making copies of the book, right? Good.

Now if the book existed in Arabia, then the book had spread from Israel to Arabia. That's the only way the book could have gotten there, right? Good.

And since the Qur'an discusses this book regularly, it's obvious that people understood what book the Qur'an was referring to, right? Wouldn't this mean that the book had spread all over the place? And if the Qur'an tells Christians to follow this book, doesn't this presuppose that Christians know what the book is? In other words, if only one or two people in the world possessed this book, and Christians didn't even know what it was, how could Muhammad expect them to know what it said, and how could he expect them to follow it?

So the book lasted for several centuries, was copied countless time, had spread from Israel to Arabia, and was well-known to Christians in Arabia. And you really expect us to believe that there's not a trace of this book anywhere on the planet or anywhere in history?

Don't you think it's strange that we have hundreds of manuscripts of the New Testament before Muhammad's time, and thousands of quotations from the New Testament, and yet no one knows anything about this mysterious book that the Qur'an refers to?

I know, I know. "But maybe it was lost!" Lost without a trace? Why does the Qur'an talk about it so much then? Didn't Allah know that it would be completely lost (without a trace)? And why does the Qur'an tell us to examine its contents? How can we, when there's not a shred of evidence that it ever existed?

Isn't the most obvious explanation that Muhammad had no clue what he was talking about? Do you understand how silly you sound?

hugh watt said...

Lupus. S:7.186; Those whom Allah sendeth astray, there is no guide for them. He leaveth them to wander blindly on in their contumacy.
You agree?

I knew this was what would happen. This, or silence, but never showing the Quranic verse to prove their point. Pride is a terrible thing!

Lupus el Lobo said...

Wood wrote:
Let's review, Lupus. The Qur'an affirms a true revelation that the Christians possessed in Arabia during his time. This would mean, wouldn't it, that this book was passed down for six centuries, and that many copies had been made? Do you understand this point at all? If a book lasts for six centuries, then people are making copies of the book, right? Good.

Lupus replied:
You presuppose that many copies were made. I given you sources that claim to have encountered remnants of a Christian sect in arabia in the 11th and 12th century. The political centre was in the Greek and Roman areas during that time. That's were Paul concentrated his mission. Accordingly manuscripts produced in those areas would have a greater chance of surviving due to the infrastructure an advanced civilisation provides. There might have been a minority christian group with their own scriptures in parts of arabia. The quran might be referring to those scriptures. When the Quran talks about false teachings like the crucifiction it might be referring to the majority christian group.

David wrote:
So the book lasted for several centuries, was copied countless time, had spread from Israel to Arabia, and was well-known to Christians in Arabia. And you really expect us to believe that there's not a trace of this book anywhere on the planet or anywhere in history?

Don't you think it's strange that we have hundreds of manuscripts of the New Testament before Muhammad's time, and thousands of quotations from the New Testament, and yet no one knows anything about this mysterious book that the Qur'an refers to?

This description fits the NT we have today not a minority text kept in an underdeveloped area. Moreover, if we supose that these christians were more prone to convert to Islam due the affinity of doctrine that might explain why their original texts might have been lost.

Mr. Wood you presupose things like there were countless of copies and that this group of christians had the same resources as the majority christians with their countless of churches, monasteries, being the state religion of the greatest empire and so on.
Moreover, who says the book was well known to all christian sects in arabia. It might be the case that the majority of the christians around mecca and medina had knowledge of this book.

Charles said...

Isn't it word Angel (Mal'akh) in Hebrew can also be meant REPRESENTATIVE?

STONE OF HAJAR ASWAD is "REPRESENTATIVE" OF ALLAH SO MOSLEM BOW DOWN UNTO IT..(BUT PRETEND&REASONED IN ACKWARD WAY THAT THE STONE NOT GOD)

JESUS IS "REPRESENTATIVE" OF FATHER, SO WE BOW DOWN TO JESUS& WORSHIP HIM

ABRAHAM BOW DOWN AND WORSHIP MALAKH YHVH(REPRESENTATIVE OF YHVH)GENESIS 18:1-2

MANOAH WORSHIP MALAKH YHVH IN JUDGES 13:3-22

THE PLAIN TRUTH IS TOWARD GOD ONLY WE BOW DOWN & WORSHIP

SO IF WE BOW TO STONE OF HAJAR ASWAAD THEN THIS "STONE" SURELY IS GOD OR PART OF GOD...

IF WE BOW DOWN TOWARD A BEING THAT "REPRESENT" GOD THEN SURELY THIS BEING IS GOD OR PART OF GOD..JUST SIMPLE LOGIC