Thursday, September 16, 2010

Nabeel Qureshi and Mufti Sulaiman Hashim: Who Is Jesus?

Nabeel and Mufti Sulaiman had this exchange last weekend when we were in California.

PART ONE


PART TWO


PART THREE

126 comments:

kadegos said...

Well done Nabeel, keep it up!
God bless you.

Monica said...

Proud to call you my brother in Christ, Nabeel. You were erudite, factual and humble.

This is the first of the debates posted on this site that I have ever watched, I was just a little confused about the format. In the middle section, you had the chance to ask several questions of the Mufti, but I do not recall him ever having the opportunity to pose questions to you, only to rebut what you said. Am I missing something? I know he said several times that he did not want a debate, was that why he asked no questions? He seems like a gentle soul and looked uncomfortable and at a loss for words many times. I wonder if this was due to his the fact that English is clearly not his first language or if he is just new to debating, either way, I don't think I'm being unfair when I say that I had difficulty following his thoughts at times. BTW, is he a sufi?

@Kadegos, nice to see a fellow RC on this site. Tanzania????

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

With the name of God, Peace be unto those who follow the guidance from their Lord.

This is one of the more respectful discussions I have seen between Nabeel and others good job.

The problem that I see with you guys (David and Nabeel) and correct me on this, is that it seems most of the apologist from the Muslim side hold onto some form of psuedo-salafi creed.

Which I must say I love the fact that they are challenged on these basic points, because it shows people the weakness in their views concerning Islamic doctrine.

The traditional Sunni Muslims have two major schools of doctrine the Ashari and Maturdi.

In these views asking 'If' God can enter into his creation I would answer as an Orthodox Muslim no.

The gentleman who responded to Nabeel believes Allah is above the throne. The Sunni Muslim position is that Allah does not exist in place (be it one place or every place) as Allah does not exist in space/time.

Asking a Sunni Muslim if God can enter into his creation would be like asking can God create another God more powerful than himself.

It creates a logical paradox.

Or asking can you draw me a four sided circle.

Again this gets into our pressuppositions and theological positions concerning our creator.

A Muslim could ask a Christian can't God just forgive all our sins and not require any payment.

A theologically consistent Christian could not answer 'yes' because a theologically consistent Christian believes that God is just, and this concept of justice entails payment.

But these discussions are definitely good, it's just dissapointing that the neo-Salafi movement is so vocal among Sunni Muslims that it ill affords Christians an opportunity to learn traditional Orthodox Islamic creed (The Ashari and Maturdi schools in Sunni Islam)

Sam said...

Nabeel, it is Matthew 26:28, not 10:28

Nakdimon said...

I dont understand Muslims, how they keep making arguments against Christianity that completely undercuts their own position.

The Mufti objected that if God took our place and forgave our sins, then he took away our responsibility. Well let's turn the table:

When Allah forgave Muhammad for all his FUTURE sins, didn't he take away the responsibility from Muhammad as well? Couldn't Muhammad go ahead and sin all he wanted as well? So are all the Muslims who raise this objection then saying that Allah was wrong for forgiving Muhammad for his future sins, wherewith he took away Muhammads responsibility and gave him a "carte blanche" for sinning all he wanted?

See what I mean?

1moremuslim said...

Again !!!!???
Again the deceitful Quran of Zaid ibn thabet!!??

Haecceitas said...

"The Sunni Muslim position is that Allah does not exist in place (be it one place or every place) as Allah does not exist in space/time."

But I think a Sunni Muslim would accept the following claims about God:

1. Everything that exists is sustained in existence by God.

2. God has a direct awareness of everything that happens at any point in space and time.

3. God has the ability to directly cause any effect he wants to at any point in space and time.

It seems to me that the conjunction of these three claims gives us all that we need to say that God is omnipresent. I must say that I have no clear idea as to what else one might mean when saying that God is omnipresent, and I'd think that many Christians would, upon a moment's reflection, say that this is more or less what they take omnipresence to be. So perhaps there isn't that big difference between the Sunni Muslim view and the Christian view after all.


"Asking a Sunni Muslim if God can enter into his creation would be like asking can God create another God more powerful than himself."

But we need to be clear about the meaning of "enter into creation" here. The entrance happens with taking a human nature in addition to the divine nature. The human body has a physical/spatial location, so it is "in" the creation. For God to enter into creation via incarnation would include making the divine mind (or perhaps a finite subset of the infinite mental resources of the divine mind) become connected with that particular human body in a same kind of relationship that the human mind normally has to the human body (one would also need to supplement this model so as to not negate the genuine humanness of the mentality within the human nature, but I won't focus on that here). You may say that you see no reason for God to do this (enter into the creation in this way), or that it is somehow beneath the majesty of God. But it seems to me that there isn't any clear contradiction involved in this, once we've defined it properly.

Sam said...

Just another minor correction. Nabeel said that in Daniel 7:13-14 the Hebrew says that the Son of Man receives latreuo which the Greek renders as pelach. First, that portion of Daniel is written in Aramaic not Hebrew. Secondly, latreuo is Greek not Hebrew or Aramaic. Thirdly, it is the Aramaic that uses pelach which the Greek version renders as latreuo.

hugh watt said...

1-

Here's what the J.W's, who also deny Christ's deity, have to say.

Colossians 1: 15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; 16 because by means of him all [other] things were created in the heavens and upon the earth, the things visible and the things invisible, no matter whether they are thrones or lordships or governments or authorities. All [other] things have been created through him and for him. 17Also, he is before all [other] things and by means of him all [other] things were made to exist, 18 and he is the head of the body, the congregation. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that he might become the one who is first in all things; 19 because [God] saw good for all fullness to dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile again to himself all [other] things by making peace through the blood [he shed] on the torture stake, no matter whether they are the things upon the earth or the things in the heavens. N.W.T

Here it says Jesus was the One through Whom all things were made! The J.W's add the word 'other' as J.W doctrine. Muslim's use the same line of reasoning. When Isa 'created a bird and made it live' they say, "Allah made him do it," but why? So J.W's and Islam both say Jesus created, but both deny His deity!

Sulaiman has a very simplistic way of accepting Islam. To say we must just "believe in god, his books and messengers, praise god, and glorify him," is not enough for those who want to entrust their souls forever to the true God. We must know Who or what we are worshiping, which requires serious investigation.

hugh watt said...

2-2

In Islam a persons eternity is predestined before they were born, which is different to what Sulaiman said.
Bukhari Volume 9, Book 93, Number 641:
Narrated 'Imran:

I said, "O Allah's Apostle! Why should a doer (people) try to do good deeds?' The Prophet said, "Everybody will find easy to do such deeds as will lead him to his destined place for which he has been created.'

Volume 8, Book 77, Number 611:
Narrated Abu Huraira:

The Prophet said, "Adam and Moses argued with each other. Moses said to Adam. 'O Adam! You are our father who disappointed us and turned us out of Paradise.' Then Adam said to him, 'O Moses! Allah favored you with His talk (talked to you directly) and He wrote (the Torah) for you with His Own Hand. Do you blame me for action which Allah had written in my fate forty years before my creation?' So Adam confuted Moses, Adam confuted Moses," the Prophet added, repeating the Statement three times.

Allah already decided who will enter Paradise and Hell, al-A`raf 7:178-179

Already have We urged unto hell many of the jinn and humankind, having hearts wherewith they understand not, and having eyes wherewith they see not, and having ears wherewith they hear not. These are as the cattle - nay, but they are worse! These are the neglectful.

To say God cannot enter His creation puts limits on Him. What Muslims should say is, Allah, according to Islam, did not do so.

kadegos said...

Yes, I do agree with Monica, Mufti looked a little bit uncomfortable, may be he wasn't well prepared (no Bible,no Quran, no PC on the table, just a piece of paper and he never took any notes). Nabeel knew exactly were the verses were in the Quran which wasn't the case for mr. Mufti. I can't wait to see their following debate on who was Muhammed, he might do better there.

Hi Monica, you got it right.. Tanzania is the country. Nice to see you too on this site.

Mike A Robinson said...

A fine debate: the Christian speaker was articulate, caring, and well-equipped. He looks to be a very effective tool for the Lord’s work. It was marvelous to see such an excellent presentation from a non-academician; his arguments were biblical, rational, and winsome. Keep up the outstanding ministry.

Haecceitas said...

Well done, Nabeel. It was good to hear you debating this topic again.

Just to make one tiny point of criticism, I think I caught at least one small factual mistake on your opening statement. You referred to Marcus Borg as an atheist but I think he's a theist of some sort, probably closest to a very liberal Christian.

Anthony Rogers said...

TGV said: "The problem that I see with you guys (David and Nabeel) and correct me on this, is that it seems most of the apologist [sic] from the Muslim side hold onto some form of psuedo-salafi creed."

How is that a problem with David and Nabeel? Isn't it a problem for you that so many of the people who stand up to defend Islam are Salafis?

Also, it doesn't matter which way you swing as a Muslim, whether Salafi or Ashari/Maturdi: none of these schoolse of thought are free of paradoxes; all of them collapse into some form of paganism.

Anthony Rogers said...

edit: "schools"

Jabari said...

Anthony Rogers......

What are Salafis? And what are Asharis?

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

With the name of God, Peace be unto those who follow the guidance from their Lord.

Haecceitas said,

3. God has the ability to directly cause any effect he wants to at any point in space and time.

Me: I think this is where Sunni Muslims would part with you. You see we want to make God be able to do anything he wants. However, Muslim creed also stipulates that this does not involve anything that causes or creates a logical paradox or goes against his revealed attributes.

God cannot enter into the creation, just as a person cannot draw a four sided circle. There becomes a logical paradox.

In Islam the creator cannot be contained by the 6 directions.

We would also differ on the issue of God being omnipresent. Sunni Muslim creed does not accept this. Omnipresent states that God is every where. Since every where is also place it is a creation.

Allah exist in his dhat(essence) before space time and continues as such in a way befitting his (Allah tala) majesty.

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

Anthony Rogers said,

"Also, it doesn't matter which way you swing as a Muslim, whether Salafi or Ashari/Maturdi: none of these schoolse of thought are free of paradoxes; all of them collapse into some form of paganism."

Anthony I want to see you as a person who actually has some knowledge on this matter and not assuming knowledge of matters you do not.

For example if I was to ask you the subtleties between Ashari and Maturdi creed. Where do they differ?

What is your response and source text? Thanks.

Mike A Robinson said...

it seems that the muslims are so divided and have so many diverse opinions - these schools of islam are confused

Anthony Rogers said...

TGV said: "Anthony I want to see you as a person who actually has some knowledge on this matter and not assuming knowledge of matters you do not."

That's a strange statement coming from you. Let's remember: only one of us in this discussion has been guilty of what you are insinuating here. Hint: it's not me.

TGV said: "For example if I was to ask you the subtleties between Ashari and Maturdi creed. Where do they differ?"

First, if you are interested in learning the differences between Asharis and Maturidis, you can do your own homework and go to the following links:

www.masabih.org/showthread.php?t=4226

www.abc.se/~m9783/fiqhi/sm1-gfh_e.html#1

www.abc.se/~m9783/ashari_e.html

If you want a book recommendation of how the two schools of doctrine differ from the teaching of Salafi’s, you might find Shaykh Muhammad Hisham Kabbani’s Encyclopedia of Islamic Doctrine, 7 volumes, published by As Sunna Foundation of America, to be helpful. Although it is called an encyclopedia, it is a multivolume, free-flowing refutation of Salafism.

Second, the point I made doesn't even require knowing the differences between the two; it only requires knowing where Asharis and Maturidis agree, and an ability to show that both approaches lead away from the teaching of the prophets in the direction of paganism.

For example, let's take your statement to Haeccitas.


You said:"In Islam the creator cannot be contained by the 6 directions."

This statement, which can be found, among other places, in Imam Abu Jafar al-Tahawi's statement of Islamic doctrine:

"38. He is beyond having limits placed on Him, or being restricted, or having parts or limbs. Nor is He contained by the six directions as all created things are."

is true to both schools of thought.


Just like classical paganism could not conceive of a God who is both one and many, absolute and personal, transcendent and immanent, but thought that God (or “the gods”) must be one or the other, so we find in the case of Muslims who also dance from pillar to post, saying that God must either be transcendent (Asharis/Maturdis) or immanent (Salafis). (If you want quotes from pagans and pagan philosophers, I would be happy to provide you with several quotes and a bibliography for further reading.)

Contrary to what you are asserting, the prophets taught that God is both transcendent and immanent. He is not only a-temporal and a-spatial, but He can also freely enter into time and space.

Anthony Rogers said...

Since it would be too easy to prove this from the Bible, allow me to show that the Qur'an itself, by clumsily importing the story of God's encounter with Moses into the Qur'an, ends up clashing with the view of God you believe is taught elsewhere in the Qur'an, the sunna and the sayings of the (true) Salaf.

According to Surah 19:51-52, Allah can AND DID enter into his creation:


Also mention in the Book (the story of) Moses: For he was specially chosen, and he was a messenger and a prophet.

And We called him from the right side of Mount (Sinai), and made him draw near to Us, for mystic (converse).


Not only does this verse say that Allah spoke to Moses, which itself presupposes that Allah entered into the space-time continuum, it says that Allah called him “from the right side” of Mount (Sinai), thus indicating direction, and that Allah made Moses draw “near” to him, thus indicating a location.

Rather than respond to what you are likely to say, I will simply wait for you to tell us how these statements jive with your view.

BTW, I see you dropped the claim that David and Nabeel are somehow at fault just because your school of thought is being outpaced by Salafi’s. Perhaps that is because their view of Allah includes believing that Allah “runs” to meet them. Who knows?

Sam said...

Brother Anthony don't forget these passages from the Quran:

When he saw a fire, and said to his family, 'Tarry you here; I observe a fire. Perhaps I shall bring you a brand from it, or I shall find at the fire guidance.' When he came to IT, a voice cried, 'Moses, I am thy Lord; put off thy shoes; thou art in the holy valley, Towa. I Myself have chosen thee; therefore give thou ear to this revelation. S. 20:10-13 Arberry

When Moses said to his people 'I observe a fire, and will bring you news of it, or I will bring you a flaming brand, that haply you shall warm yourselves.' So, when he came to IT, he was called: 'Blessed is he who is IN the fire, and he who is ABOUT it. Glory be to God, the Lord of all Being! Moses, behold, it is I, God, the All-mighty, the All-wise. S. 27:7-9 Arberry

Then, when Musa (Moses) had fulfilled the term, and was travelling with his family, he saw a fire in the direction of Tur (Mount). He said to his family: "Wait, I have seen a fire; perhaps I may bring to you from there some information, or a burning fire-brand that you may warm yourselves." So when he reached IT (the fire), he was called from the right side of the valley, in the blessed place FROM the tree: "O Musa (Moses)! Verily! I am Allah, the Lord of the 'Alamin (mankind, jinns and all that exists)!" S. 28:29-30 Hilali-Khan

Allah, who supposedly cannot enter his creation, not only entered into it but actually entered into a tree and in the fire which didn't consume the tree! Go figure.

Leobrigada said...

Well it was an easy debate. This mufti didn't have a real knowledge. But he uses double standards as they always do and as Nak said it.

1moremuslim said...

To Anthony Rogers:
I will be interested to know your definition of Paganism. It seems add to me, that One who worships a God, who has a son, ( whatever that means), a God who Created mankind then felt regret, was born of a woman, circumcised, got lost in his childhood, grew in knowledge, got hungry and ate... And accuses Muslims (who refuses all of the above) of Paganism!!! Am I missing something? To be Pagan is exactly the reason why Muslims cannot adhere to such belief. Another interesting point, what do you think of Judaism, which shares the same attributes of God with Muslims?

Anthony, I have a question for you: If God can enter into his creation, can he be anything in the creation? Can he become, let's say, a statue of Buddha? Or why not a golden calf? Please answer this very simple and sincere question.
Peace.

Leobrigada said...

It was an easy debate. This Mufti didn't have real knowledge.

Anthony Rogers said...

The God of Christianity is both absolute and personal. The absolutes of paganism are not personal (Plato's "Form of the Good"; Aristotle's "Thought Thinking Itself", the fates, etc.); the gods of paganism are not absolute (e.g. Zeus, Athena, etc.). The idea that the absolute God could become flesh was/is anathema to the pagan mind. In fact, it is such a well known and easily demonstrable fact that the very concept of the incarnation (as Christians understand it) was anathema to pagan thought in antiquity that I can only conclude that Islam has done very little to enlighten you about the true nature of paganism. Perhaps that is because Islam is wildly inconsistent, leading people to assert on one hand that God cannot enter into His creation because this is precluded by a pagan understanding of transcendence, and on the other hand subscribing to a book that inconsistently borrowed from the prophets who taught that the absolute God can and did reveal Himself to prophets like Moses without detracting in the least from His transcendence.

By the way, since you complained that Jesus, who, by virtue of taking on a human nature, could grow in knowledge, and since you also showed no compunction about misusing the statement that God "regretted" creating man, I will ask you a question: "If it is pagan to believe that the Son of God could become a human being and grow in knowledge, what should we call the teaching that Allah was ignorant about what Moses was holding in his hand when he appeared to him?

"And what is that in thy right hand, O Moses?

He [Moses] said, 'It is my rod: on it I lean; with it I beat down fodder for my flocks; and in it I find other uses." (Surah 20:17-18)

1moremuslim said...

Anthony Rogers:
I was hoping that you would just answer my Questions. In your lengthy reply, you answered NONE.
1/ What is your definition of Paganism? It's useful to know that those "Pagan" Philosophers used to call Christians "Pagans". Pagan means : those who believe in other God, it's not an objective term. Al what you did is putting together a philosophical assertion, and a theological position of old Greeks. First, being Pagan philosopher doesn't mean that everything said by them is wrong, otherwise why are we studying their stuff?

"The idea that the absolute God could become flesh was/is anathema to the pagan mind"

You should say, to the Greek philosophers. What you fail to say, is that the idea is a nonsense for ALL human mind, including Christians themselves. You can just pretend to understand the 100% God/100% man, but most sincere Christians say it's a mystery , a DOGMA. How many Christians became Atheist due only to the nonsense of it's doctrines? The incarnation is problematic for the Christians themselves, that is why they have to invent new terms (labels) like Hypostatic Union, the man-god, trying to ease the confusion around its fundamental beliefs.

The Greeks have a very valid rational point: Everything in this world is limited and measurable, therefore an absolute entity cannot be part of this world. So the inconsistency is to say that an Absolute is in this world.

In the bottom line, pointing out a similarity between "Paganism" and Islam proves nothing. I will not waste my time numbering the striking similarities between Christianity and the Greek mythology about the concept of the LOGOS, and his role in the creation.


Why didn't you answer my last questions?

Anthony, I have a question for you: If God can enter into his creation, can he be anything in the creation? Can he become, let's say, a statue of Buddha? Or why not a golden calf? Please answer this very simple and sincere question.

Finally, you have to make a difference between explicit statement and implicit ones. When Gods asks questions, it doesn't mean that he didn't know. God asked many questions in the Quran , such as for example to Jesus: Did you say to your people worship me? And Jesus replies : You KNOW that I didn't.
But it's puzzling how Jesus ( being God) took human nature, while still having Godly nature, but the human nature (ignorance) overshadows the absolute Godly nature !!! You are speaking of Paradoxes !!
Peace.

1moremuslim said...

To Anthony Rogers:

The God of Christianity is abosolute???
Nabeel Qureishi in this debate demonstrated that he is not, he is subject to the law. Tertullian refused to believe that Jesus is God, because of this reason: You can not have 2 absolute entities, if the father is absolute, then the Son could not be absolute. The word SON itself implies limitation; SON of, means one who is generated by X. If Jesus says " My father is greater then I" in whatever sense you want, that implies that, in some sense, that he is not absolute. An absolute cannot be smaller than X, in any shape or form. And an absolute cannot, in any time, cease to be absolute.


Please Anthony, answer my questions, posted previously, you just ignored them:

If God can enter into his creation, can he be anything in the creation? Can he become, let's say, a statue of Buddha? Or why not a golden calf? Please answer this very simple and sincere question.
Peace.

Anthony Rogers said...

1moremuslim,

Nabeel did not deny that God is absolute; neither did He deny that the Son in His divine nature is absolute. Neither did He say that in becoming a man Jesus ceased to also be God, and thus absolute. You are simply reading your refusal to believe that Jesus is both God and man into what Christians believe and are trying to refute it on that basis. But you can't refute a position without taking into account all that it entails. Since Jesus is both divine and human, He can be infinite, eternal and unchangeable, spoken with respect to the former, and He can have finite characteristics as well, spoken with respect to the latter. This likewise means that Jesus could be the lawgiver and also the one who satisfies the demands of the law. You may not like this view, but there it is. That is what you have to refute.

As far as Tertullian goes, I really don't know what you are talking about (and am confident you don't know what you are talking about either). Tertullian coined the word "Trinity" in reference to the Bible's teaching about God, and very clearly taught the deity and humanity of Christ.

"In his birth he is God and man united." (Apology, ch. 21)

"Him we believe to have been sent by the Father into the Virgin, and to have been born of her — being both Man and God, the Son of Man and the Son of God, and to have been called by the name of Jesus Christ..." (Against Praxeas, Ch. 2)

"We see plainly the twofold state, which is not confounded, but conjoined in One Person - Jesus, God and Man.." (Against Praxeas, ch 27)

As for your lingering question, I ansewred the idea that you are targeting. What you are trying to do is argue that God cannot enter into His creation, for then it would lead to pagan notions - such as that God could then become a statue or the like. But in showing that the author(s) of the Qur'an made a whopper of a mistake by including the story of God speaking to Moses, which tells us that God can enter into His creation, I have effectively undercut your argument. If you want to pretend that God entering into His creation leads to paganism, then you first need to take that up with the Qur'an. I didn't write it, and if I had the opportunity, I wouldn't have written it. The Bible alone is the Word of God (written).

Anthony Rogers said...

1moremuslim,

I just noticed that you had another reply to me before your last one.

In response to your second to last post, then, let me say a few things:

First, since you have said the word pagan is a subjective term that refers to those who believe in another god, fallaciously appealing to the word's etymology to determine how it is used today, then fine, I happily grant that I don't believe in the Allah of the Qur'an.

Second, since you concede that the view you supposedly get from divine revelation is the same as can be found in the "pagan" philosophers and that God cannot enter into his creation for this is paradoxical according to their (and your) thinking, it is high time for you to learn how this reduces all of Islam's pretensions to having a divine revelation to the same level of foolishness as that on full display in the Greek Philosophers.

I will illustrate this by asking you a simple question. Think before you reply.

"If Allah cannot enter into his creation and speak to man, then how can you claim that the Qur'an is the word of Allah?"

Remember! Think before you reply. This isn't going to be pretty.

Traeh said...

"If Allah cannot enter into his creation and speak to man, then how can you claim that the Qur'an is the word of Allah?"

Ouch!

1moremuslim said...

To Anthony Rogers:

You are still dodging my question, one may ask why?

I like it when you know what my aim was, admitting the validity of my point, but still you didn't refute it, you have just pushed your Quranic interpretation on me: "Look, you have the same problem!" The Quran doesn't say that God was in the fire speaking with Moses. That is why, you find some Mufassirun who say that God was in the Fire, MANY others say NO. That is not a conclusive statement.

Regarding your question, how can the Quran be the word of Allah if God didn't enter into the world, every Muslim would tell you that the Quran was revealed through Gabriel, no verse was revealed in a direct fashion.
But I find it more difficult for you, to assert that God can with no problem appear to humans, while the Bilbe states several ties that God cannot be seen. Dr Mickael L Brown responded by saying : It's God the FATHER who cannot be seen. Brilliant!! Are we still to believe that The Father and the Son are equal? Is Dr Brown borrowing that from Paganism? Can God the Father enter into his own creation? Yes or no? If YES, then in what sense he cannot be seen? If NO, then How can he speak to Jesus in his earthly life?

A little story to summarize:

A Greek Pagan thinker says that a triangular object cannot fit into a square hole and a triangular hole at the same time, the Muslim thinker agrees. The Christian came with a solution: We can make the object a three sided square, that will fit into both square and triangle hole. The Greek and the Muslim are amazed, they ask for the definition of a three sided square? The Christian thought about it for a couple of decades then came back:
A triangular square is a shape that is 100% square and 100% triangle at the same time, 2 natures not mixed and not separated. Muslim and the greek still don't understand, how can that be? The Christian replies; very easy, it's the hypostatic union! What is the hypostatic union? Its the notion that a Square becomes a triangle, without ceasing to be a square!!

The Muslim and the Greek thinkers don't by it for a second. Christians themselves didn't buy it. You can just pretend that is true. The history of early Christianity shows that is a complete confusion. How many wars and persecution have been done within Christians,just because " How God entered into his creation"?

Your claim that you believe in one God, I don't buy it for a second. And the Catholic claim that they don't worship Mary, I don't buy it for a second. If archeologists find an ancient Greek creed declaring that Zeus, Poseidon and all their Gods are ONE, You would never say that Greeks were monotheists.

The SugaRat said...

Hi Nabeel. I have a comment for you from a Muslim friend of mine (I am not Muslim). Being that the Quran claims that it /appeared/ that Jesus was crucified, why did you emphasize the point that all the historical evidence shows that Jesus was crucified? My friend makes the point that if it Jesus /appeared/ to be crucified, then the historical evidence agrees with this, and the Koran. If you (or others of course) would like to comment I will be sure to pass this back to my friend.

I am much obliged.

Take care.

The SugaRat said...

Hi Nabeel.

I have another comment/question from my Muslim friend regarding your point about how Allah is responsible for Christianity if he raised Jesus to save him from the cross.

The point my friend made, was that if Allah saved Jesus from the cross, that's one thing. Then, if people made up stories about Jesus being risen, Allah cannot be responsible for that. All he did was save Jesus, not make people make up resurrection stories, that was up to them, and so Allah cannot be held responsible.

That was the point that was made anyhow. We would very much like to hear your comments on that also.

Thank you very much

Anthony Rogers said...

1moremuslim,

I said this wouldn't be pretty. See here.

James said...

When Christians say that God entered into creation, do they mean that the uncreated and the created became conjoined in one entity?

If Christians believe that the uncreated and the created became conjoined in God's Entity, then this is a very problematic theological position for them to take.

hugh watt said...

Sugarat:

Not all Muslim schools are agreed on whether Jesus was on the cross.

"S.4:157 And because of their saying: We slew the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, Allah's messenger - they slew him not nor crucified him, but it appeared so unto them; and lo! those who disagree concerning it are in doubt thereof; they have no knowledge thereof save pursuit of a conjecture; they slew him not for certain."

The historical records show He was not only crucified, but that He died on the cross. Islam comes along 600yrs later and says we've been wrong all along, pretty much like what Joseph Smith of Mormonism said about +ianity.
Your friend seems to be caught in a state of confusion. Was He on the cross, or did it only appear as though it were Jesus? This is the Q you should ask your friend. He will start from the position of the Koran being right and work backwards, in which case you may want ask him how he came to that conclusion.

"S.57:22. No misfortune can happen
On earth or in your souls
But is recorded in
A decree before We bring
It into existence:
That is truly easy for God:"


Here it says Allah is responsible for all ills etc that befall man.
Logically then, if +ianity started Allah decreed it in a book. If it were a "misfortune," why was it, Allah approved it!!!

James said...

Allah decreed that Trinitarian Christianity exist, as a test for the people, to test who would follow the pure Monotheism taught by all the Prophets (peace be upon them) and who would abandon that Monotheism for an unprecedented doctrine.

And the issue of whether a man died on a cross has nothing to do that Monotheism.

Anthony Rogers said...

James, Christians mean that deity and humanity, without being comingled, were united in one person, the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus is both God and man, not a tertium quid.

The Allah of the Qur'an is a non-entity and therefore didn't and can't decree anything.

Since Muhammad was the johnny come lately and his message does not agree with the true prophets who came before him, it is his teachings that have no divine precedent for them.

The Lord Jesus did die on the cross for His sheep, and it has everything to do with true monotheism: "I am the way, the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but by Me."

James said...

It seems then that you believe Jesus (peace be upon him) to be both created and uncreated at the same time.

hugh watt said...

James:

The Koran says Allah is the root and cause of all deception and evil. Allah misunderstood the Biblical concept of Trinity. It's not wise to follow such a fallible god! Perhaps you'd like to explain how Allah got it so wrong.
Do you not see Muhammad's conduct and doctrine as unprecedented too? After all, which other prophet was
so self-seeking and encouraged their followers to indulge to their carnal hearts desires as Muhammad did?

Anthony Rogers said...

Newsflash: Anthony Rogers has just been accused by James the Muslim of believing that "the Word became flesh and dwelt among us" (John 1:14). In other words, he has been accused of belieiving the word of the prophets (e.g. Isaiah 7:14; Micah 5:2) instead of the words of a non-accredited, self-proclaimed prophet whose teachings are without precedence (unless we look to paganism).


***Update***

Anthony Rogers just pleaded guilty to the charge of being a Christian.

In other news: Islam has been found guilty of being mono-prophetic, contrary to its own claims to believe in all the prophets and make no distinction between any of them. In favor of the words of one man who was not sent by God but by a malignant spirit who manhandled him in a dark cave, Islam rejects what God said from the beginning of the world to the coming of the Lord Jesus Christ to confirm God's promises. By denying what God has said throughout the ages, and by denying that He brought His words to pass, Muslims make God out to be a liar.

James said...

If you really believe that Jesus (peace be upon him) is both created and uncreated at the same time, can you explain why this belief is not self-contradictory?

Anthony Rogers said...

"If you really believe..."

I am not sure why you have any difficulty thinking I "really" believe in the incarnation. I know as a Muslim you have certain assumptions that make it difficult for you to believe it, but why is it difficult for you to believe that I believe it?

"...can you explain why the doctrine is not self-contradictory?"

As for the coherence of the doctrine of the incarnation, it does not assert that Jesus is both created and not created with respect to his person and divine nature. Christ as a divine person, i.e. the Word of God, is eternal. There never was a time when God the Father was without His Word. It is the human nature of Christ, body and soul, that is not eternal. He took human nature upon Himself in the first century.

Having said that, the incarnation is a revealed doctrine; it is not a doctrine discovered by the mind of man. If you do not believe the doctrine to be true on the basis of its revelation through the prophets, then you won't even believe if I show that it is capable of rational defense. Your basic problem, then, is that you refuse to submit your thinking to God's revelation. If and when you do seek to think God's thoughts after Him, i.e. if you give priority to His words over your thinking, allowing them to displace the faulty assumptions that stear you to a wrong conclusion, then you will have little trouble understanding the incarnation.

I hope that helps.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: “As for the coherence of the doctrine of the incarnation, it does not assert that Jesus is both created and not created with respect to his person and divine nature.”

Here it simply sounds like you are saying that Christians don’t believe that Jesus is both created and uncreated with respect to his uncreated nature (i.e. his divine nature), and that doesn’t really provide an answer, because you also seem to admit that he has a created nature as well (i.e. his human nature which is not eternal). Quote from Anthony: “It is the human nature of Christ, body and soul, that is not eternal. He took human nature upon Himself in the first century.”

If you believe that Jesus is fully uncreated (i.e. fully deity) and fully created (i.e. fully human), then this is pure contradiction.

If you believe that Jesus is partly uncreated (i.e. partly deity) and partly created (i.e. partly human), then this is considered pure heresy by Trinitarian Christians (from what I gather).

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

I am happy to see that you have not renewed your claim that I don't believe in the incarnation.

However, it is disconcerting that you still do not care what the prophets have spoken.

To answer your new challenge, which has in principle already been answered, allow me to define a contradiction for you:

A contradiction says that something is both A and not A at the same time in the same sense.

You have not shown above that the incarnation involves a contradiction; you have simply equivocated on the use of certain terms.

When Christians say Jesus is fully divine they mean that He does not lack any of the essential attributes of deity.

When Christians say Jesus is fully human, they mean he lacks nothing essential to being human (i.e. a real body and soul).

In other words, Christians are not saying that Jesus is both (fully) created and (fully) uncreated at the same time in the same sense. He has two whole, entire, complete natures, neither of which are confused with the other, both of which are united in His one person.

If you want to successfully generate a contradiction from propositions held by Christians, you will have to look elsewhere. Of course I don't believe you can find a contradiction anywhere else in Christian theology, but it is clear that trying to do so on this issue is a dead end. And that is why you don't want to talk about the prophets. You would rather pretend that God has not revealed Himself and that your mind is the measure of all things. That is a main reason why the incarnation is so flabbergasting to you; it is a wonder and a sign from God that, although you cannot prove to be contradictory, still exceeds your ability to measure:

Again the LORD spoke to Ahaz, "Ask the LORD your God for a sign, whether in the deepest depths or in the highest heights." But Ahaz said, "I will not ask; I will not put the LORD to the test." Then Isaiah said, "Hear now, you house of David! Is it not enough to try the patience of men? Will you try the patience of my God also? Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel [Heb. God with us]."

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

I am happy to see that you have not renewed your claim that I don't believe in the incarnation.

However, it is disconcerting that you still do not care what the prophets have spoken.

To answer your new challenge, which has in principle already been answered, allow me to define a contradiction for you:

A contradiction says that something is both A and not A at the same time in the same sense.

You have not shown above that the incarnation involves a contradiction; you have simply equivocated on the use of certain terms.

When Christians say Jesus is fully divine they mean that He does not lack any of the essential attributes of deity.

When Christians say Jesus is fully human, they mean he lacks nothing essential to being human (i.e. a real body and soul).

In other words, Christians are not saying that Jesus is both (fully) created and (fully) uncreated at the same time in the same sense. He has two whole, entire, complete natures, neither of which are confused with the other, both of which are united in His one person.

If you want to successfully generate a contradiction from propositions held by Christians, you will have to look elsewhere. Of course I don't believe you can find a contradiction anywhere else in Christian theology, but it is clear that trying to do so on this issue is a dead end. And that is why you don't want to talk about the prophets. You would rather pretend that God has not revealed Himself and that your mind is the measure of all things. That is a main reason why the incarnation is so flabbergasting to you; it is a wonder and a sign from God that, although you cannot prove to be contradictory, still exceeds your ability to measure:

Again the LORD spoke to Ahaz, "Ask the LORD your God for a sign, whether in the deepest depths or in the highest heights." But Ahaz said, "I will not ask; I will not put the LORD to the test." Then Isaiah said, "Hear now, you house of David! Is it not enough to try the patience of men? Will you try the patience of my God also? Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel [Heb. God with us]."

James said...

Anthony,

You don't believe that Jesus is partly uncreated and partly created, right?

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

You are obviously trying, for whatever reason, not to understand. Maybe you are dense. Maybe you just want to be annoying. I don't know. But if there is no evidence in your next comment that your understanding is advancing, or unless you come up with a new argument, I am going to let this be the last response that I make to you on this issue for now in this thread.

Jesus is one person. He has two natures. His fully divine nature is completely uncreated. His fully human nature is completely created. These two natures, His uncreated and fully divine nature and His fully human created nature, are united in His one person. There is no contradiction here because we are not saying He is created and uncreated in His divine nature or created and uncreated in His human nature. He is Uncreated only with respect to the former; He is created only with respect to the latter.

In order to show a contradiction in what God said through the prophets, thus proving that a distinction should be made between them and Muhammad, who did not confirm but contradicted them, you must be able to show that Christ is both created and uncreated in the same sense or in relation to the same thing. You must be able to show that Christians believe that Jesus' divine nature was created and uncreated, or that his human nature was created and uncreated. Since we do not, the only contradiction here is your pretending to be interested in reason while all the evidence suggests you prefer obfuscation, equivocation, and obscurantism instead.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: “Jesus is one person. He has two natures. His fully divine nature is completely uncreated. His fully human nature is completely created. These two natures, His uncreated and fully divine nature and His fully human created nature, are united in His one person.”

You say that Jesus has a completely uncreated nature and a completely created nature.

Would you say that God has a completely uncreated nature and a completely created nature?

Anthony Rogers said...

The second person of the Trinity, God's eternal Word, has two natures. He is consubstantial with the Father and the Spirit as to His divine nature; He has the same kind of nature as us in His human nature.

James said...

Would you say that God has a completely uncreated nature and a completely created nature?

Yes or no.

Anthony Rogers said...

Your question is equivocal and loaded. I will answer the question as it should have been asked:

Yes, Jesus, who is one with the Father and the Spirit in His divine nature, is both God and man.

No, the Father and the Spirit, although they share the same divine nature with the Son, do no also have a human nature as the Son does.

Your cross-examination period has ended. Time for you to answer some questions:

Does Allah have a nature?

Does Allah have attributes?

Is Allah One in every sense?

James said...

It should be obvious to everyone that my question was unequivocal and precise, using terms that you have clearly affirmed.

I can understand why you are not willing to say that God has a completely uncreated nature and a completely created nature, because that would entail pure contradiction and contradiction laid bare.

And indeed, it would be pure contradiction to say that God has any created nature.

Therefore, whatever created attributes you worship besides God, please desist from worshiping these.

“God is not a man” (Numbers 23:19).

Anthony Rogers said...

I didn't say I worship any created attributes, so there is nothing to desist from. At least in my case.

If you think your question was asked in an unequivocal and precise way that shows an understanding of Christian theology, and if you think it should be obvious to everyone that you have not been more than adequately responded to by me (several times over), then you will no doubt be content to leave this discussion to everyone's discretion to decide. I certainly am.

If you ever think you have an answer to my questions, feel free to come back and answer them. Until then, I am also willing to leave to the discretion of others the reason you are so reticent to answer.

James said...

Anthony,

Do you not believe that God took on (created) human flesh?

Anthony Rogers said...

Jimmy, I Thought you were confident that you understood and that it was obvious to everyone that you did a good job? Were you fibbing, Jimmy?

Go ask Muhammad the answer to my questions. Run, Forest, run.

CharlesMartel said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
James said...

So, you believe God took on created attributes (of flesh) and then you say that you don't worship created attributes?

Do you not worship God fully?

hugh watt said...

CharlesMartel:

Stop that! Just stop it! Any more tears I'll drown.

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

You mean you don't even believe that Muhammad was a prophet? You worship an unknown god without a definite nature or attributes? You reject Allah's 99 names? You believe Allah is a blank and empty idea, a word without content?

I'll assume you still atleast believe all that stuff about Satan lodging in your nose when you sleep.

James said...

I have not thrown personal insults at any one of you.

It is a poor indicator for this website that such comments are even allowed through.

Forego the insults and address the issues.

As for Anthony’s questions to me, then I may answer them in due course, if people show some manners and chivalry.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: “The second person of the Trinity, God's eternal Word, has two natures.”

Quote from Anthony: “Jesus is one person. He has two natures. His fully divine nature is completely uncreated. His fully human nature is completely created. These two natures, His uncreated and fully divine nature and His fully human created nature, are united in His one person.”

So, you believe that the second person of the Trinity has two natures, an uncreated nature and a created nature.

It seems then that you have accepted the created nature (of Jesus) into your Trinity (concept of God), and if so, this is associating partners with God (Shirk).

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

What happened to your confidence? I thought you were convinced that you made your point clearly and that you laid bare some contradiction in Christian theology? By not letting the matter go and allowing the readers to decide "the obvious", you are telling on yourself. But don't worry, I didn't believe you when you said that any more than you did.

As I see it, there are only two ways to view the way you are acting:

1) Either you are playing dumb in the way that you are conducting yourself in this conversation (e.g. making weird insinuations about whether I "really" believe something; asking the same questions repeatedly; asking equivocal or loaded questions, and then saying you were not; deriving phony inferences from what I have said; etc.);

or

2) You are not playing dumb but are just plain dumb.

If the former, then you are insulting us; if the latter, then you are inviting having your person and position mocked.

In light of this, If you ever reclaim your missing confidence and/or get your wits about you, and if you answer my questions to you, then you can have another opportunity to cross-examine me and see if you can make a dent this time. If not, go look for a place to huck your wares and pretend that you are an honest, truth loving, chivalrous individual.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: “Does Allah have a nature?”

We refer to the Entity of Allah. I am not aware of the word “nature” being used in our theology and I would feel more comfortable using the word “reality”.

Quote from Anthony: “Does Allah have attributes?”

Allah has infinite Attributes, which are not distinct from His Entity.

Quote from Anthony: “Is Allah One in every sense?”

Allah is One in the Absolute sense. However, Allah is not “one” of many deities, and so we do not affirm meanings of words that are not appropriate for Him.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: “You mean you don't even believe that Muhammad was a prophet? You worship an unknown god without a definite nature or attributes? You reject Allah's 99 names? You believe Allah is a blank and empty idea, a word without content?”

No, to these questions.

1moremuslim said...

Anthony,

"When Christians say Jesus is fully divine they mean that He does not lack any of the essential attributes of deity."

What do you mean by that Anthony? We know that he lacks at least one crucial attribute of Deity, namely knowledge. Can you prove the contrary?

James said...

Anthony,

If you ever want to become a first-rate apologist, then you must first learn to refrain from personally insulting others.

Since you believe that God took on created flesh and you accept the created nature of Jesus into your Trinity (concept of God), this is all clear-cut evidence of your associating partners with God (Shirk).

Moreover, you affirm a created nature and an uncreated nature in your concept of God, and this entails pure contradiction.

We can leave it there, until you learn the proper manners of dialogue.

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

With a renewal of your chivalry, albeit with some hedging and blaming me for your second-rate conduct that required a little prodding to get you to answer, you have now decided that you want a dialogue. I am happy you have decided to have a two-way discussion, finally.

Now let's get to the good stuff.

According to you, Allah is an entity, Allah has infinite attributes, these attributes are not separate from his being, and Allah is absolutely one. Uh, oh.

If Allah is one entity, above all plurality, how then do you speak of Allah having "infinite attributes"? Allah, the One, has a plurality of attributes? Are you sure? Really?

Not only does the above involve you in a contradiction, the very thing you weakly tried to argue was true of the Christian concept of the Trinity and the two natures of Christ, but it even contradicts what "first-rate" Muslim scholars say. Recognizing that the above is philosophically tenuous (to put it nicely), Muhammad Asad gives the classical Islamic (and philosophically attuned) view that Allah does not really have any essential, definig attributes. Islamic unitarianism, just like what we find in pagans like Plotinus, whose views were rooted in autonomous philosophical speculation rather than any genuine revelation from God, logically leads to the conclusion that Allah, “the One”, cannot really be said to have any “attributes”, and all such talk must be understood nominalistically:

“…. The very concept of ‘definition’ implies the possibility of a comparison or correlation of an object with other objects; God, however, is unique, there being ‘nothing like unto Him’ (42:11) and, therefore, ‘nothing that could be compared with Him’ (112:4) – with the result that any attempt at defining Him or His ‘attributes’ is a logical impossibility and, from the ethical point of view, a sin. The fact that He is undefinable makes it clear that the ‘attributes (silat) of God mentioned in the Qur’an do not circumscribe His reality but, rather, the perceptible effect of His activity on and within the universe created by Him.” (Muhammad Asad, Surah 6, fn. 88) (Emphasis original)

But nominalism is fraught with all kinds of problems, not the least of which is that it would mean that we could also say that Allah is evil, since the “perceptible effect of His activity” encompasses not only good but also evil. It also leads to volunatarism and thus destroys ethics.

So we either have your view, which is contradictory, or the more classical view attenuated by Muhammad Asad, which is altogether unacceptable.

Thanks, but no thanks.

1moremuslim said...

Second attempt to post.

Anthony wrote:

"When Christians say Jesus is fully divine they mean that He does not lack any of the essential attributes of deity"

What do you mean by that Anthony? We know for sure Jesus lacked at least one of the "essential" attributes of God , namely KNOWLEDGE. !!!???
I wonder how do you believe that God has non-essential attributes, and how do you make the difference between what are those essential and those not essential.

hugh watt said...

1More:

"When Christians say Jesus is fully divine they mean that He does not lack any of the essential attributes of deity."

What do you mean by that Anthony? We know that he lacks at least one crucial attribute of Deity, namely knowledge. Can you prove the contrary?"


The Koran says Allah is the root and cause of all deception and evil.
Allah misunderstood the Biblical concept of Trinity. It's not wise to follow such a fallible god! Perhaps you'd like to explain how Allah got it so wrong.

thegrandverbalizer19 said...

With the name of God, Peace be unto those who follow the guidance from their Lord.

Oh my dear Anthony!

You said, "So we either have your view, which is contradictory, or the more classical view attenuated by Muhammad Asad, which is altogether unacceptable."

Classical view? I mean I can understand there being a Classic Coca-Cola from the early 20th century and Muhammad Asad is from that time but pray do tell us Anthony was Muhammad Asad's aqidah Maturdi or Ashari? That is classical Islam for those who do not know.

For example Anthony did you know what Imam Al Ghazali's view was on what you pretend to be informed about?

Do you really define Muhammad Asad as classical?

Out of curiosity have you ever read the work Al-Asma' wa al-Ahkam?(a detailed treatise on the subject you now mention)

1moremuslim said...

Hugh Watt;

No need to repost all of my quote, if you don't intend to answer any of my contentions. Anthony used that fallacy ( You too )once in the beginning of this article. It seems that every time you are cornered, you use the same diversion tactic. Answer your theological problems, and let my problems aside. If you don't know, then retain your emotions , and let Anthony answer for you.

James said...

With due respect to Muhammad Asad for all his great efforts, he would not be considered an authority in classical Islamic theology.

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

TGV,

Your prolonged silence had us worried.

Thanks for coming back to remind us just how widely Muslims differ in their wonderfully simple view of Allah and that if you ask two Muslims to resolve the paradox you will get three or four different answers.

Asad's view has a long history in Islamic philosophy. If you think otherwise, then you probably shouldn't pretend that you need to give me book recommendations or ask what I've read.

Saying Al Ghazali's view solves the problem isn't an answer, and asking me if I am aware of his view isn't an answer either. If you think his view does the trick, then put your money where your 'verbalizer' is.

James said...

Repost of previous comment with further detail:

Quote from Anthony: “If Allah is one entity, above all plurality, how then do you speak of Allah having "infinite attributes"? Allah, the One, has a plurality of attributes? Are you sure? Really?

Not only does the above involve you in a contradiction...”

Anthony,

If there is a contradiction here (in our theology), then you are also embroiled in that contradiction, because Christians also believe that God is One and that He has Attributes.

However, there is no contradiction here.

Jews, Christians and Muslims will all agree that God is One and that He has Attributes, because this is the teachings of the Prophets (peace be upon them) and there is no contradiction in their teachings.

However, there is clear contradiction in claiming that God (the uncreated) has a created nature and an uncreated nature.

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

I will let you, TGV and Muhammad Asad bicker over whose view gets to be called the official Islamic view; I really hate getting involved in other people's family squabbles.

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

Nice try. I asked above if Allah is absolutely one, above all plurality. You replied in the affirmative: Allah is "one in the absolute sense". This view of God's unity certainly does contradict your new and improved view that God is one in a qualified sense that does not rule out His attributes.

Don't worry, I won't rap your knuckles with a ruler too hard; I am decidely happy that you, inching your way closer to the truth, have decided to qualify Allah's oneness and say, like Jews and Christians, that God is both one and many in certain respects and that this is not contradictory. Far be it from me to encourage any retrogression in your understanding when we have already made such great progress.

If we keep this up you could well be a full-blown trinitarian by the end of the week. Unfortunately, I have to break things off for now to finish a couple of projects.

Feel free to have the last word on this post. We will have future opportunities to discuss these issues if you stick around this blog and if the Lord Jesus is willing.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: “Nice try. I asked above if Allah is absolutely one, above all plurality. You replied in the affirmative: Allah is "one in the absolute sense". This view of God's unity certainly does contradict your new and improved view that God is one in a qualified sense that does not rule out His attributes.”

Anthony,

Yours is a misrepresentation of events.

I have never responded to a question of yours containing the phrase "above all plurality" in the affirmative that Allah is "one in the absolute sense". Such an exchange between us simply has not happened.

Here is the true order of events:

You asked me: “Is Allah One in every sense?” (September 27, 2010 4:27 PM)

I quoted you and responded with: “Allah is One in the Absolute sense. However, Allah is not “one” of many deities, and so we do not affirm meanings of words that are not appropriate for Him.” (September 28, 2010 6:06 PM)

The first time you used the phrase "above all plurality" was after this, when you tried to insert this phrase into our theology by saying: “If Allah is one entity, above all plurality, how then do you speak of Allah having "infinite attributes"?” (September 29, 2010 12:14 AM)

To be honest, "above all plurality" is not a phrase that I have ever used, or would ever use, when explaining Islamic theology. If you ever thought that I had affirmed the use of this phrase, then I apologise for not correcting your use of it right from the outset.

Remember I said that “we do not affirm meanings of words that are not appropriate for Him”, and we would not use a phrase that might be understood as denial of His Attributes.

James said...

As for the Trinity:

Our major objection is in your introducing two created beings (Jesus and the Holy Spirit) into your concept of God to create a Trinity and your worship of created beings thereby (Shirk).

Then there is the clear contradiction in claiming that God (the uncreated) has a created nature and an uncreated nature.

Fifth Monarchy Man said...

Hey Guys
I want to thank you for this discussion. It has been very enlightening to me to see an example of how the Muslim mind thinks. I also enjoyed the opportunity to clarify in my own mind what I believe about the incarnation.

I hope you don’t mind but I would like to chime in to see if I can clear something real quick

A long time ago James said:

So, you believe God took on created attributes (of flesh) and then you say that you don't worship created attributes?

Do you not worship God fully?

I say:

This seems to me to be a large part of your misunderstanding of our position.

Attributes are not part not to be worshiped. One must Worship God alone.

Mercy is an attribute of God but we don’t worship “mercy” we worship the God who is merciful.

in the same way we don't worship weakness but the God who for our sake became weak


Do you understand the difference?

Besides it's important to remember that The limitation that the Word underwent in the incarnation was temporary so Jesus no longer possess attributes that imply finitude.

He did however retain the attributes that result from his willing condescension. The Word became weak and gave up his omniscience temporarily only so that he could be said to possess attributes like empathy and solidarity with his people as well as true understanding of our plight.

For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need. (Hebrews 4:15-16)


It’s only because of the incarnation that Yahweh can be said to posses these wonderful attributes.

Allah, if he can be said to have attributes at all could never posses these praiseworthy ones. He is forever isolated from you and impotent in his ability to know you in any meaningful way.

If given a choice between two deities the one that can sympathize with our weaknesses is obviously the greater. God by definition is greatest being that can be conceived.

Therefore “logically” the deity you worship is not God.

I pray you spend some time dwelling on this important truth

Peace

1moremuslim said...

To Fifth Monarchy Man:

I always laugh at the 21st century Christian apologetics: God is the greatest conceivable being!!! lol. I want to know, who conceives who? If that Logic is true, then the God of the Atheist is the greatest conceivable being ( by far) , The God of the Atheist doesn't allow earthquakes, floods and plagues. So now you have to believe in the God of the Atheists, who doesn't exist.

God is God because of his attributes: All knowing all powerful. If God became weak, that means that he ceased to be God. Our God cannot be less than a God.

I have a million $ question: Can God become a cow, without ceasing to be God?

hugh watt said...

1More:

"What do you mean by that Anthony? We know that he lacks at least one crucial attribute of Deity, namely knowledge. Can you prove the contrary?"

If you're referring to what I think you are, you need to understand why Christ came to earth and what His mission was. This is +ianity #101.

Phil. 2:6 Christ was truly God.
But he did not try to remain equal with God.7 Instead he gave up everything and became a slave, when he became like one of us.
Christ was humble. He obeyed God
and even died on a cross.

So, with TRUE humility, He laid aside His Majesty, gave up everything for me, suffered at that hands of those He had created.
He took all my guilt and shame, when He died and rose again,
now today He reigns - in the hearts of those who have submitted to the TRUE God through Him - in heaven and earth exalted.
You know what: I really want to worship Christ my Lord, He has won my heart and I am His for ever and ever, I will love Him. Here's why; He is the only one who died for me, gave His life to set me free, so I lift my voice to Him in adoration.

John 17:4 I have brought glory to you here on earth by doing everything you gave me to do. 5 Now, Father, give me back the glory that I had with you before the world was created.

I repeat my Q with a little extra.

The Koran says Allah is the root and cause of all deception and evil. Can Allah be true and false at the same time?
Allah misunderstood the Biblical concept of Trinity. It's not wise to follow such a fallible god! Perhaps you'd like to explain how Allah got it so wrong.

"I have a million $ question: Can God become a cow, without ceasing to be God?"

Will a son cease being a son if he becomes a father?

Btw, when you ask for someone to "prove the contrary," you need to know there's a difference between proving something about God, and proving from sources what one claims. I have done the latter in regards to your Q; will you oblige and do likewise to my Q's?

Fifth Monarchy Man said...

Hey 1 more Muslim

You said:

The God of the Atheist doesn't allow earthquakes, floods and plagues.

I say,

Alvin Plantinga has done a good job of showing that the god you describe is logically inconceivable. His argument is now accepted by most philosophers even the Atheist ones. It might be helpful if you check it out.

You said:

God is God because of his attributes: All knowing all powerful. If God became weak, that means that he ceased to be God.

I say:

You are making the attributes more basic than the being of God when in reality the being and existence of God are equally ultimate.

God is not God because he is merciful he is merciful because he is God

You say,

Our God cannot be less than a God.

I say:

Your god is either not infinitely just since he either leaves some sin unpunished or not infinitely gracious because he does not offer pardon to sinners.

Your God is unable to sympathize with our weakness and impotent to have a real relationship with his people.

Because he is Unitarian he is unable to experience the love that even the lowest human can experience.

So I think it’s clear that your god can be less than God.


You say,


I have a million $ question: Can God become a cow, without ceasing to be God?

I say,

If he chooses to God can manifest himself in any way he sees fit. Whether it is inside a burring bush or as a divine Son of Man (Daniel 7).

God’s power is only limited by his will and his will is only limited by his nature.

The question is what he chooses to do.

God chooses to only do things that result in his Glory.

To become incarnate in a man from Galilee in order to forgive sin while remaining infinitely just results in his glory, to be a cow not so much.

Peace

James said...

Quote from Fifth Monarchy Man: "Mercy is an attribute of God but we don’t worship “mercy” we worship the God who is merciful."

This is our theological position also.

However, the basis of our argument is that created attributes entail a created entity, which possesses those created attributes.

Therefore, wherever I have mentioned the worship of created attributes (in a statement), then realise that I have (tacitly and correctly) assumed your worship of the created entity that possesses those created attributes.

Our major objection is in your introducing two created beings (Jesus and the Holy Spirit) into your concept of God to create a Trinity and your worship of created beings thereby (Shirk).

Peace

Fifth Monarchy Man said...

Hey James,

You said

However, the basis of our argument is that created attributes entail a created entity, which possesses those created attributes.

I say,
Why is this so? There is no logical reason that I can see for the Son not to be able to empty himself for a time with out ceasing to by God.

Normally I don’t like to give examples from creation when we are discussing God. They will always fail to fully illustrate his majesty.

God will allways be more grand than his creation and not less.

With that in mind....

There is a TV show in America called Undercover Boss in which a CEO temporarily takes a job in his own company

The boss forgoes his attributes of Wealthy and Powerful to become Poor and Subordinate for a week.

Just because he chooses for a time not to avail himself of his power and wealth does not mean he ceases to possess them.

Just because he chooses to live for a time as an employee does not mean that he is forever constrained as such.

Surely any God worth his stuff has the ability to do as much.

You say,

Our major objection is in your introducing two created beings (Jesus and the Holy Spirit) into your concept of God to create a Trinity and your worship of created beings thereby (Shirk).

I say,

If that is the case you need not worry. God has revealed himself to us as three eternal persons in one being.

The Bible written hundreds of years before the Quran by the Prophets and Apostles of our Lord makes it clear that Son and the Holy Spirit are not created beings.


There is no reason to take the word of someone who contradicts this revelation especially if they were demonstratably ignorant of it.

Peace

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

I have some spare time at the moment, so I thought I would resume our discussion.

The issue here is not chronology or whether I originally included the phrase “above all plurality” when I first asked the question about Allah’s oneness.

I happily concede to you the order of events.

I also readily grant that I did not use the aforementioned phrase originally; however, the word “absolute” means “without qualification”, and so when you said Allah is “one in the absolute sense” you were saying that Allah is one without qualification, which is nothing more than to say, “above all plurality”. If Allah is not above all plurality, then he is not one “in the absolute sense”.

By answering me in the way that you did, i.e. complaining that you said God is one in the absolute sense and not that he is above all plurality, we have a clear indication that you either do not know the meaning of the word “absolute” or else you are knowingly equivocating in order to avoid the stigma of having contradicted yourself.

The following conversation illustrates what you are doing:

----------------------

Antoinette: “Are you a bachelor?”

Jimmy: “Yes, I am.“

(The conversation breaks off here and picks up after several months of courting when Susan discovers that Jimmy actually has four wives.)

Antoinette: “You louse. I trusted you. I asked if you were a bachelor and you said you were not married.”

Jimmy: “You have the chronology wrong. I said I was a bachelor. You inserted that part about not being married shortly after we started courting. I should have corrected you about that from the onset, but the basic error is still yours.”

-----------------

As you no doubt recognize, Antoinette is clearly in the right here and Jimmy either didn't know what he was saying originally, which is kind of hard to swallow, or else he was being duplicitous, which is altogether believable.

Anthony Rogers said...

Given the meaning of the word absolute, and given that Muslims say things like the following,

“The foremost in religion is the acknowledgement of Him, the perfection of acknowledging Him is to testify Him, the perfection of testifying Him is to believe in His Oneness, the perfection of believing in His Oneness is to regard Him Pure, and the perfection of His purity is to deny Him attributes, because every attribute is a proof that it is different from that to which it is attributed and everything to which something is attributed is different from the attribute. Thus whoever attaches attributes to Allah recognises His like, and who recognises His like regards Him two; and who regards Him two recognises parts for Him; and who recognises parts for Him mistook Him; and who mistook Him pointed at Him; and who pointed at Him admitted limitations for Him; and who admitted limitations for Him numbered Him. …He is only One, such that there is none with whom He may keep company or whom He may miss in his absence.” (see: www.al-islam.org/nahj/default.asp?url=1.htm)

And

“His being is not merely One (wahid but ahad, in which there is no tinge of plurality in any way: He is not a compound being, which may be analysable or divisible. which may have a form and shape, which may be residing somewhere, or may contain or include something, which may have a colour, which may have some limbs, which may have a direction, and which may be variable or changeable in any way. Free from every kind of plurality He alone is a Being Who is Ahad in every aspect. (Here, one should fully understand that the word wahid is used in Arabic just like the word "one" in English. A collection consisting of great pluralities is collectively called wahid or one, as one man, one nation, one country, one world, even one universe, and every separate part of a collection is also called one. But the word Ahad is not used for anyone except Allah. That is why wherever in the Qur'an the word wahid has been used for Allah, He has been called Itah wahid (one Deity), or Allah-ulWahid-al-Qahhar. (One Allah Who is Omnipotent), and nowhere just wahid, for this word is also used for the things which contain pluralities of different kinds in their being. On the contrary, for Allah and only for Allah the word Ahad has been used absolutely, for He alone is the Being Who exists without any plurality in any way, Whose Oneness is perfect in every way.” (See: www.islamicstudies.info/tafheem.php?sura=112)

And

“Allah, may he be blessed and exalted, is absolutely one, and does not allow any multiplicity or composition. He is beyond description, and can not be described by any category.” (The magazine of the University of Umm-Al-Qura, Vol. 6, p. 123)

I’m sure you can imagine why I would think that when you said Allah is absolutely one, you were affirming that this rules out “any tinge of plurality” and “any multiplicity” regarding Allah.

By the way, I lament that I have to point out that all the quotes above demonstrate that Islamic “monotheism” leads to nominalism, and also that the first quote demonstrates that nominalism goes back to the earliest days of Islam. Nevertheless, I am happy that I have done my part to restore Muhammad Asad’s name from the accusation of not knowing what Islam has classically understood about Allah’s unity, “attributes”, etc.

James said...

Anthony,

Quoting one of the earliest heresies taken from an unreliable source does not strengthen your case, just as you would probably say that quoting Gnostic sources would not strengthen my case.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: "however, the word “absolute” means “without qualification”, and so when you said Allah is “one in the absolute sense” you were saying that Allah is one without qualification".

Anthony,

The word “absolute” also has other meanings, and you should have known that I had not intended the meaning “without qualification”.

Why should you have known this?

Because when you asked me "Is Allah One in every sense?" (i.e. without qualification), I responded with "Allah is One in the Absolute sense" and I immediately followed this with an obvious qualification in the next sentence.

And my writing of “Absolute” with a capital letter indicated a term specific for God, not any old dictionary definition.

James said...

And it is worrying that you use a clear variant of an atheistic argument against another theist. Here is a hypothetical exchange (between a theist and an atheist) that I have prepared to help illustrate this fact:

Jimmy (the theist): God has Absolute Power.

Tony (the atheist): If God has Absolute Power, can He create a rock too heavy for Him to lift?

Jimmy (the theist): No – His Power does not pertain to matters that are intrinsically impossible, that involve self-contradiction, such as creating a square circle.

Tony (the atheist): You have contradicted yourself, because saying that God has Absolute Power means that God has Power without qualification, and now you have just made a qualification.

Jimmy (the theist): You are mistaken, because you did not take the time to clarify my terminology.

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

The word “absolute” has other meanings? Okay, what was the other meaning of the word that you had in mind? And if you had another meaning in mind, how does pointing out that you capitalized the word show that you intended some other meaning of “absolute” than what by all accounts is the primary meaning of the word? Wouldn’t the fact that you capitalized it point to just this, that you meant the word in its most basic sense? And doesn’t the fact that you did not object “from the onset” say anything, like maybe the primary meaning of the word is how you have otherwise always understood the word in application to Islamic monotheism, that is, until the problem with such an understanding was pointed out to you? And what does all this do to the Muslim mantra that Islam teaches “the purest” form of monotheism? I’m afraid many other groups have held a stricter view of “oneness” than the one that you are espousing (and not just heretical Muslim groups like Mutazilites or those who hold to the authenticity of Nahj al-Balagha).

As for the quotes I supplied showing that Muslims have used the word in the very way you now object to – and who hasn’t heard it used in that way to deny the Trinity? – you took exception to one of them, suggesting that it is a spurious and heretical work. Says who? You? Shia Muslims certainly accept it. Some Sunni Muslims accept it as well. And besides all this, in your arbitrary dismissal of one of the quotes you left the other two quotes I supplied intact. Would you please waive your hand so that the other two will also go away?

With respect to your claim that I am using “a clear variant” of an atheistic argument when I call you on your equivocal use of the word absolute, you once again belie any claim to understand what you are talking about. You grant in your mock-dialogue that notions like making a square circle are contradictory. But since illogical feats are not feats at all, saying that God cannot make a “square circle” is not a qualification of God’s absolute power.

Finally, clarifying your terminology is your job, especially if you are going to use words in unconventional ways. If you fail to do so then you can hardly cry foul when others say you are dancing from pillar to post.

Anthony Rogers said...

But all of the above is relatively uninteresting. I can live with the fact that you have contradicted yourself, even if you can’t. I don’t like your attempt to cover the matter up, but as I said before I think you are moving in the right direction in your understanding of “oneness”. I am happy you don’t believe that Allah is one in the absolute sense (alert: I am using the word absolute in the normal way here). I wish the whole Muslim world would rally to your cause and renounce this as heresy. I wish Muslim leaders would be clear to their followers that this is a heresy. Renounce it. Bury it. Be done with it. Let it smolder in the grave with every other false prophet, teacher and philosopher who ever taught it. Let it never be spoken of or heard again.

When this fault-ridden notion goes the way of all the earth, never again will we have to hear arguments from Muslims which presuppose that God is a colorless, abstract monad devoid of any and all plurality, and that any and every belief that does not assume this understanding of “Tawhid” but asserts that God is a uni-plural being is not truly monotheistic.

When you hear Muslims saying things like this, I pray that you will have the courage to rise up in protest. I pray that you will tell these Muslims that they are wrong: this is not the religion of the prophets. The prophets taught that God, the true God, is one, echad; not an abstract one. Never did they use any word in Hebrew or Greek that would indicate that God is an abstract one. In fact, they did the opposite. They uniformly chose words that communicate that God is a rich diversity subsisting in perfect unity, and not just a unity of attributes but of persons – the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: “Wouldn’t the fact that you capitalized it point to just this, that you meant the word in its most basic sense?”

The fact that I made a qualification in the following sentence demonstrates clearly that I did not intend the meaning “without qualification”.

Quote from Anthony: “Finally, clarifying your terminology is your job, especially if you are going to use words in unconventional ways.”

I am hardly using terms in unconventional ways.

God having Absolute Oneness means that, in His Oneness God is perfect, free from defect, and not dependent on any other being (entity).

Quote from Anthony: “I can live with the fact that you have contradicted yourself”.

At no point have I contradicted myself, and my previous post should be sufficient to expose your atheist-like word games.

James said...

And Anthony,

Just as God’s Absolute Power does not pertain to matters that are intrinsically impossible (that involve self-contradiction), God’s Absolute Oneness does not pertain to matters that are intrinsically impossible (that involve self-contradiction).

There - I have mentioned God's Absolute Power and God’s Absolute Oneness, and I have made a qualification for both.

1moremuslim said...

Anthony Rogers,
You seem to be suggesting that the prophets taught that there are more than one divine person. For that I am speechless. DR James white aknowledges that no prophet ever believed in the Trinity.
The God of Christianity has:
- plurality in persons.
- Plurality in wills.
- Plurality of functions: The father does not incarnate, the Son does.
- Plurality of description: The son is begotten, the father is not.

I am wondering , what is the relevance of the Shmaa? what makes the first commandment, the greatest of all? You turned it into a big cosmic joke.

Another question, I guess you will dodge it like all others; What guaranty do you have to believe that there are no other persons within the Godhead , that are still not revealed? Why God is not 4 persons in One being?

hugh watt said...

1More:

Still asking Q's but not answering any! Answer me this:

The Koran says Allah is the root and cause of all deception and evil. Can Allah be true and false at the same time?
Allah misunderstood the Biblical concept of Trinity [S. 5:73]. It's not wise to follow such a fallible god! Perhaps you'd like to explain how Allah got it so wrong.

You want answers from others, how about answering some yourself.

Anthony Rogers said...

Okay, James. Given that you have left unchallenged three quarters of my last two posts, and since the only thing you did challenge was my "atheist-like" defense of God's absolute power - a very strange description showing a lack of familiarity with theistic apologetic literature - I happily move past that and grant that you hold a different (and better, albeit still defective) view of God's oneness than that held to by other Muslims in history. I hope you don't mind if I now try to help 1moremuslim catch up. He seems to be on a different page regarding God's oneness, though he does have in his favor at least an apparent interest in discussing the prophets.

Anthony Rogers said...

1/2

1moremuslim,

You lost my interest some time ago and James stole the show, but now the tables have turned in your favor.

There is no need to be speechless that God is not an abstraction but is characterized by a rich diversity, a uni-plural being. That is what the prophets taught. Just ask James.

The Shema is a good place to start, so thanks for bringing it up. I can assure you the Shema is not a joke, and you would do well to take it seriously. It does begin with the word “hear”, after all. That is what the Hebrew word shema, from which the “creed” takes its title, means.

There are other words in the Shema that you would do well to pay close attention to. Indeed, every word of the Shema offers something by way of correction to Muslims. Rather than duplicate something I have already written on, I would direct you to the following article of mine: The Shema and the Shahada.

Some modern theologians believe the Trinity is a doctrine that waited the incarnation of the Son and the outpouring of the Spirit at Pentecost for its revelation. My view is that the Trinity is revealed in the Old Testament, though in a much fuller way in the New. The latter view was held by the church fathers, the Reformers, and many others since them up to our own day. Here is a representative sampling of some of these.

“Moses clearly teaches this [the Trinity] in the creation of the universe.” John Calvin, Institutes, Bk. 1, ch. XIII, sec. 7.

"From the arguments adduced by us before...it might be satisfactorily inferred that it [the Trinity] was revealed and known under the Old Testament... It therefore becomes necessary to establish...the truth of this mystery not only from the New, but also from the Old Testament." Francis Turretin, Institutes of Elenctic Theology, vol. 1 (Philipsburg, New Jersey: Presbyterian & Reformed, 1992), p. 272.

“…it evidentally appears that the doctrine of the Trinity was revealed under the Old Testament.” Thomas Boston, The Complete Works of Thomas Boston, Vol. 1 (Wheaton, Illinois: Richard Owen Roberts, Publishers, 1980 reprint), p. 144.

“The doctrine of the Trinity is revealed in the Old Testament, in the same degree that the other truths of Christianity are; not with the clearness and fullness of the New Testament, yet really and plainly.” W. G. T. Shedd, Dogmatic Theology, vol. 1 (Minneapolis, Minnesota: Klock and Klock Christian Publishers, 1979) p. 261-266.

“Thus the Old Testament contains a clear anticipation of the fuller revelation of the Trinity in the New Testament”, Berkhof, Systematic Theology, p. 86.

“We expect the doctrine of the Trinity to be taught in the Old Testament but to be much more clearly taught in the New Testament”, Cornelius Van Til, Introduction to Systematic Theology (Phillipsburg, New Jersey: Presbyterian and Reformed, 1974), p. 220.

Anthony Rogers said...

2/2

There is a lot that could be said in response to your question whether there could be more than three persons in the Godhead, and perhaps I will say more at some point. For now I would simply point out that your question makes a little more sense on the assumption that the Trinity isn’t revealed until the New Testament. On that assumption, although the Old is not thought of as inculcating unitarianism just because it establishes the unity of God over against polytheism, you have the three persons first coming into view in the New Testament, which could be thought to indicate the possibility that an additional person or persons might be revealed in the future. Now I don’t think those who understand the progress of revelation in this way are without any answer to your question, but since I don’t hold this view I will leave it to them to make that case.

My view is that God revealed Himself as triune from the onset. From the very first God revealed Himself as a rich diversity of attributes and persons subsisting in perfect unity. In the beginning of the Bible He reveals Himself to be triune. On this view the revelation of the Trinity does not drop out of the sky de novo in the New Testament, and so on this view there is no reason, in terms of the progress of revelation, to think there might be an additional person in the Godhead.

Here is a good article from Dutch theologian Herman Bavinck that sets forth the basic approach that I take: The Divine Trinity.

Anthony Rogers said...

For some reason the links feature isn't working.

Here is the url to the article on the Shema:

(http://answering-islam.org/authors/rogers/shema.html)

And here is the link to Bavinck's article:

(http://www.the-highway.com/trinity_Bavinck.html)

Fifth Monarchy Man said...

Here is a link the scripture index for White’s book on the Trinity

http://vintage.aomin.org/TrinityIndex.html

In it you will find a myriad of OT scriptures dealing more or less with the subject beginning with Genesis one.

As I understand him White does not believe that the Trinity was a new revelation in the NT, only that the character of God was most clearly revealed in the Incarnation.

Do you understand the difference?


Peace

Anthony Rogers said...

Fifth Monarchy Man,

Hey bro, if you could, please contact me by e-mail (available in my blogger profile). I have something to send you. Thanks. God bless.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: "There is no need to be speechless that God is not an abstraction but is characterized by a rich diversity, a uni-plural being. That is what the prophets taught. Just ask James."

We do not describe God's Being (Entity) as plural.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: "Okay, James. Given that you have left unchallenged three quarters of my last two posts".

Well, you basically present Mutazilite heresy as orthodoxy, add in a few diversions, then tell us to reject that position.

Well, we have been rejecting the Mutazilite heresy for centuries, and will continue to do so.

As, for your quoting Mawdudi (where it says "no tinge of plurality"), then I may comment on this if I get time, because it is interesting. However, I would not consider him a classical scholar either.

1moremuslim said...

Hugh watt:

A biblical verse for to ponder upon:

Let our lord now command thy servants, which are before thee, to seek out a man, who is a cunning player on an harp: and it shall come to pass, when the EVIL spirit from God is upon thee, that he shall play with his hand, and thou shalt be well.
1 Sam 16:16-17 (KJV)

1moremuslim said...

Anthony Rogers:

Why was the show stolen by James? I was asking you many good questions though! Would you please scroll up, and answer them.

The Trinity awaited the Incarnation of Tertullian, in the second century, then Tertullian left "Christianity" and found something more interesting; he became Montanist.
There is no explicit teaching of Trinity in the NT, let alone the Old. You can quote Calvin and can quote Servitus.
Why only Trinitarians see Trinity? Because it's only in their imagination.

hugh watt said...

1MM:

I ask a fair Q methinks. Your response:

"A biblical verse for to ponder upon:

Let our lord now command thy servants, which are before thee, to seek out a man, who is a cunning player on an harp: and it shall come to pass, when the EVIL spirit from God is upon thee, that he shall play with his hand, and thou shalt be well.
1 Sam 16:16-17 (KJV)"


I know why you struggle to answer the Q. It really shows Allah to be a square circle god!

"Why was the show stolen by James? I was asking you many good questions though! Would you please scroll up, and answer them."

How's about you do the same. If you can't, ok, I have others.

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

What you tried to extinguish with a waive of your left hand you have now fanned into flame with the other. But rather than point it out only to watch you engage in definition juggling again, please explain what you meant before when you said, "Allah has infinite Attributes, which are not distinct from His Entity."

Do you believe that Allah's being and attributes are coeterminous? If not, would you agree with Ghazali that Allah's attributes are not he, and yet they are not other than he (paraphrase)? What exactly are you saying is the relationship between Allah's being and attributes such that his attributes are not distinct from his entity and yet plurality does not enter into the very notion of Allah in some sense?

I am truly looking forward to your answer.

(P.S. Lord Jesus willing, I will be back on Saturday.)

Anthony Rogers said...

Edit: coterminous

Fifth Monarchy Man said...

Hey 1moreMuslim,

You said:
There is no explicit teaching of Trinity in the NT, let alone the Old.

I say:

Could you define Trinity for me?
It’s possible that the reason that you don’t see the Trinity taught in the Bible is because you like Mohammad misunderstand what Christians mean when we say God is a Triune being.

To make sure that is not the case and that you don’t have the wrong idea of the nature of the persons in the Godhead like James did, it would be very helpful if you told us what you mean when you say Trinity.

Peace

1moremuslim said...

To Fifth Monarchy Man:

Can I define the Trinity?
The Trinity is that God is one Being (ousia) in three Persons (Hypostasis). And that is not explicitly taught in the Bible.
If you research a little more about the term Hypostasis, you will see that the term was used to mean also substance. Just go to Hebrew 1:3, and see how different translations confuses "Being" and "person", although the greek word is the same Hypostasis. In the third century, Christians made the word Hypostasis means only Person to eliminate the confusion. kind of, cut the foot to fit the shoe.

James said...

Fifth Monarchy Man,

There is no misunderstanding of the Trinity in the Quran.

James said...

Quote from Anthony: “What you tried to extinguish with a waive of your left hand you have now fanned into flame with the other. But rather than point it out only to watch you engage in definition juggling again, please explain what you meant before when you said, "Allah has infinite Attributes, which are not distinct from His Entity."”

The only juggling taking place is from you with your atheist-like word games. I refer back to the hypothetical exchange between Jimmy and Tony, because it is a neat illustration of this.

Before considering your new set of questions, I would prefer to address the root of your continuing insinuations.

Quote from Anthony: “I can live with the fact that you have contradicted yourself, even if you can’t. I don’t like your attempt to cover the matter up”.

You claimed contradiction on my part, but your claim was not based on evidence, only presumptuousness, bad opinion, and pretence of knowing my intent.

And there seems little point in answering your new set of questions while you continue with this type of approach.

Anthony Rogers said...

James,

I think there is a more obvious reason you'd rather not answer my questions or define how you are using certain terms.

But I can tell when a man is down.

I'll let you be and will flesh out where I was going in a future article. Chow.

Fifth Monarchy Man said...

Hey Guys,

1moremuslim said

The Trinity is that God is one Being (ousia) in three Persons (Hypostasis).

I asy

That is the philosophical definition and while it mat be technically correct it tells me absolutely nothing about whether or not you understand what Christians mean when we say that God is triune.

Can you give me the definition of Trinity in your own words and specifically what parts you believe to be not found in the Bible?

no cut ant paste this time

James said:

There is no misunderstanding of the Trinity in the Quran.

I say:

I find that hard to believe given the fact that you demonstrated that you don’t understand the doctrine and believe that the Son and Holy Spirit are created beings.

But I’m game. It's possible that you don't know your own holy book.

Please give a Quranic passage in which Muhammad accurately describes the Trinity. Ive yet to see one.

peace





I say:

1moremuslim said...

Fifth Monarchy Man :

Which Trinity you want to be described in the Quran? he Trinity of Tertullian and Origen? One ousia in three Hypostasis or One Hypostasis in three ousia? They are all BS. The Quran is not the Encyclopedia of Heresies. The Quran refuted all in one sentence: Stop saying three. Clear and Straight forward.
Now your turn , give me verse in the Bible which accurately describes the Trinity. I am waiting.

Fifth Monarchy Man said...

Hey 1moremuslim,

You say:

Which Trinity you want to be described in the Quran?

I say,

How about the Trinity as described in the Bible. Or if you think it’s not to be found there it could describe the Trinity that Christians believe is in the Bible. As it is it what the Quran describes something that no Christian ever believed as if it is the Trinity.

You would think that a revelation from God would at least be familiar with works written hundreds of years earlier.

You say,

T he Trinity of Tertullian and Origen? One ousia in three Hypostasis or One Hypostasis in three ousia? They are all BS.

I say,


There you go with the cut and past philosophical definitions.

Most folks who believe in the trinity would not know a Hypostasis if it bit them. I was a Trinitarian long before I ever heard of Origen or Tertullian.

Please give me a description of the doctrine of the Trinity in your own English words so I can know if you understand what you are denying.

You say,


The Quran refuted all in one sentence: Stop saying three. Clear and Straight forward.

I say,

What is that supposed to mean?

Most 12 year old Christians I know can describe the Trinity with out ever using the word three (in any form).

I guarantee that I never say “three” when I’m explaining this doctrine to others.

Does that mean that what I believe is OK as far as your religion goes. I doubt it.


You say,

Now your turn , give me verse in the Bible which accurately describes the Trinity. I am waiting.

I say,

Not so fast I asked you first to define the Trinity in your own words and tell me specifically what parts you believe to be not found in the Bible?

Once you do that if your definition is accurate I will be gladly give you multiple verses to prove you wrong.

That's a promise

Peace

James said...

Quote from Anthony: “I think there is a more obvious reason you'd rather not answer my questions or define how you are using certain terms.

But I can tell when a man is down.”

It is with some sadness that I see you resorting to insinuations again and rhetoric without substance.

And I did not say that I would not answer your questions.

But first, please inform me how you thought that I contradicted myself?

You did not provide evidence, only presumptuousness, bad opinion, and pretence of knowing my intent.

Anthony Rogers said...

Nice try, James.

We've already gone that route. Remember? Define how you were using certain terms and phrases first. That way we won't have to watch you equivocate some more in an effort to avoid the follies and pitfalls of tawhid.

Anthony Rogers said...

P.S. When you go on record explaining what you meant, I'll make sure your view (minus any personal referrence to you) is included in my article.

hugh watt said...

1MM

"The Quran is not the Encyclopedia of Heresies. The Quran refuted all in one sentence: Stop saying three. Clear and Straight forward."

Since when did the Koran become a commentary on the Bible!

James said...

Quote from Anthony: “Nice try, James.

We've already gone that route. Remember? Define how you were using certain terms and phrases first. That way we won't have to watch you equivocate some more in an effort to avoid the follies and pitfalls of tawhid.”

Anthony,

Tawhid means Monotheism, and you are making it clear that you are an opponent of Monotheism.

And what you consider to be equivocation can be more accurately described as you imposing meanings that were clearly not intended.

Quote from myself: “Allah is One in the Absolute sense. However, Allah is not “one” of many deities, and so we do not affirm meanings of words that are not appropriate for Him.”

I had assumed that you would astute enough to notice that the obvious qualification in the second sentence - "We do not affirm meanings of words that are not appropriate for Him".

However, you were either not astute enough to notice this or you chose to deliberately impose a meaning that was not intended.

Quote from Anthony: “however, the word “absolute” means “without qualification”, and so when you said Allah is “one in the absolute sense” you were saying that Allah is one without qualification”.

You made this claim despite my clear words ("We do not affirm meanings of words that are not appropriate for Him").

If you apologise for your mistake, then I will aim to answer your new set of questions.

James said...

As for your quote from Mawdudi, then he is not to be considered a reliable authority. He is reported to have held highly objectionable opinions, in theology and jurisprudence.

I will not give credence to you quoting from unreliable sources and so I have decided not to comment on the actual wording of that quote.

Ustaad said...

All I see one man is with truth, while other man enjoying superiority language and being a well spoken. Muslim need to forward someone like Ahmed Deedaat who destroy their big pastors in front of the whole whole, even pope John Paul II scared to take him. This Sheikh has language problem.