Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Sami Zaatari vs. David Wood: Is Muhammad a Good Role Model for Society?

For those of you who never expected to see a public debate on Muhammad in Dearborn, Michigan . . . prepare for shock and awe!

Sami Zaatari contacted me when he realized that he'd be arriving in Michigan just as I would be leaving. On short notice, we were able to schedule this debate, which was hosted by some of the Muslim students at Henry Ford Community College.

Sami proposed a very interesting topic: "Is Muhammad a Good Role Model for Society?" While we weren't able to cover everything, we certainly addressed many of the most important topics on both sides of the issue.



I should add that I have a tremendous amount of respect for the Muslims who attended the debate. It's easy to hide from criticism. It takes courage to face criticism.

95 comments:

Derek Adams said...

Saying it again here, Sami seems like a better presenter and debater in general. I don't think of these issues like David. David as usual has pointed out the barbarity of some of the injunctions, punishments empirical to Islam, and the problems with Islam that we have in the West.

Now here is what I have to add. Firstly how can one person be a role model for an entire society?

It doesn't make sense to me. I can understand role models for certain sections of society, but one person who is a perfect example for all factions of society, all the tiny little intricate subsections? This is simply not possible. Simply not a western or plausible idea. Is Mohammed a role model for woman's fashion? Is Mohammed a role model for scientists?

Was Abraham Lincoln an example for science or fashion or religion?

Was Ghandi an example for an army military, security or navy?

Was Alexander the great an example for conquering and slavery?

You know the whole question itself begs the question and assumes that one person can be a role model for an entire society. How ignorant can you get!

This is also a dishonest honest formulation. As Mohammed is not merely a "role model" but the "perfect exemplar" whom "must" be emulated by all Muslim citizens of that society.

Mohammed is certainly not a role model for secular humanists, or Jews or Atheists or Zoroastrians, that leaves us with Muslims, is he merely a role model or is it obligatory to follow him in every way? Clearly the latter.

So first of all he is not a "role model" in the sense we think of a role model in the West, complete misnomer.

Derek Adams said...

As for Mohammed's instructions on family, racism, charity etc. I won't comment on everything. However, Islam like other religions (i'm thinking of Catholicism), always likes to highlight and appeal to "charity" and it's aiding in the helping with poverty.

First of all it must be stated "charity" is not obligatory, otherwise it wouldn't be charity. So Islam is already arranged to be like a socialist system in this sense. Thus in Islam Mohammed again is not a role model, but is offering a political paradigm for all citizens to obligatorily follow. Islam cuts out all the competition and purpose driven society provided by capitalism and exchanges it with equal distribution of all resources, property and money. While this might finish poverty, the problems go further.

Sami doesn't seem to categorize those who are in poverty and need of charity. We know for a fact that there is not one single individual group who if "saved" from this situation would really benefit them any. Take for example: "Bums" are a significant portion, they lack motiviation, self discipline, money managing skills, they create more chaos and lose everything because they have no skill. Then there is those who choose to remain in such conditions for their own reasons. Then there are those with mental or physical disabilities that just need help. Then there are those who have been destroyed by the government or family and have legitimate reasons, maybe they need aid.

What the West really has done alot better than Islam is made possible an ancient Chinese proverb rephrased by me:

"Give a man money or food for a night or a week and you feed him, TEACH a man HOW to MAKE money, you have set him up for life."

The greatest thing about living in the West is this. We have a system for anyone can take advantage of and become rich, with will power and hard work, there is unlimited opportunity. On the other hand the West provides social services to those with mental or physical disabilities and hence it is a given that if certain African continent followed in the path of England or Australia , or most European countries, then we would have VERY LITTLE POVERTY compared to the current situation.

Derek Adams said...

As for Sami's distortions of 9:29 this has already been explicitly debunked using his own sources quoted on his own website:

http://www.answeringabraham.com/2012/01/quran-929-and-zaatari-and-samatar.html

http://www.answeringabraham.com/2012/02/re-examining-historical-context-of.html

His distortion of Maududi is the most deceptive quotation I've seen yet, not only did he omit Maududi's conclusion to his introduction, he then omits the actual text where Maududi provides his analysis of 9:29.

Derek Adams said...

Sami is false. 4:88-89 is not the only possible mention of apostates in the Quran.

Take note:

But if they repent and establish worship and pay the poor-due, then are they your brethren in religion. We detail our revelations for a people who have knowledge. And if they break their pledges after their treaty (hath been made with you) and assail your religion, then fight the heads of disbelief -- Lo! they have no binding oaths in order that they may desist. (9:11-12)

Maududi (whom Sami quotes as an approved commentator on his website) provides the historical context:

"The following is the occasion for the revelation of this verse: During the pilgrimage (hajj) in A.H. 9 God Most High ordered a proclamation of an immunity. By virtue of this proclamation all those who, up to that time, were fighting against God and His Apostle and were attempting to obstruct the way of God's religion through all kinds of excesses and false covenants, were granted from that time a maximum respite of four months. During this period they were to ponder their own situation. If they wanted to accept Islam, they could accept it and they would be forgiven. If they wanted to leave the country, they could leave. Within this fixed period nothing would hinder them from leaving. Thereafter those remaining, who would neither accept Islam nor leave the country, would be dealt with by the sword. In this connection it was said: "If they repent and uphold the practice of prayer and almsgiving, then they are your brothers in religion. If after this, however, they break their covenant, then war should be waged against the leaders of kufr (infidelity). Here "covenant breaking" in no way can be construed to mean "breaking of political covenants". Rather, the context clearly determines its meaning to be "confessing Islam and then renouncing it". Thereafter the meaning of "fight the heads of disbelief" (9:11,12) can only mean that war should be waged against the leaders instigating apostasy."

Derek Adams said...

Regarding Sami's distortion of 4:34

He assumes because the word means "hit" or "strike" it therefore cannot cause pain.

But the arabic word "lahad" for "struck" or "pushed" in the following hadith proves otherwise:

Muhammad b. Qais said (to the people): Should I not narrate to you (a hadith of the Holy Prophet) on my authority and on the authority of my mother? We thought that he meant the mother who had given him birth. He (Muhammad b. Qais) then reported that it was ‘A’isha who had narrated this: Should I not narrate to you about myself and about the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him)? We said: Yes. She said: When it was my turn for Allah’s Messenger (may peace be upon him) to spend the night with me, he turned his side, put on his mantle and took off his shoes and placed them near his feet, and spread the corner of his shawl on his bed and then lay down till he thought that I had gone to sleep. He took hold of his mantle slowly and put on the shoes slowly, and opened the door and went out and then closed it lightly. I covered my head, put on my veil and tightened my waist wrapper, and then went out following his steps till he reached Baqi’. He stood there and he stood for a long time. He then lifted his hands three times, and then returned and I also returned. He hastened his steps and I also hastened my steps. He ran and I too ran. He came (to the house) and I also came (to the house). I, however, preceded him and I entered (the house), and as I lay down in the bed, he (the Holy Prophet) entered the (house), and said: Why is it, O ‘A’isha, that you are out of breath? I said: There is nothing. He said: Tell me or the Subtle and the Aware would inform me. I said: Messenger of Allah, may my father and mother be ransom for you, and then I told him (the whole story). He said: Was it the darkness (of your shadow) that I saw in front of me? I said: Yes. He struck (pushed hard/lahad) me on the chest WHICH CAUSED ME PAIN, and then said: Did you think that Allah and His Apostle would deal unjustly with you? She said: Whatsoever the people conceal, Allah will know it. He said: Gabriel came to me when you saw me. He called me and he concealed it from you. I responded to his call, but I too concealed it from you (for he did not come to you), as you were not fully dressed. I thought that you had gone to sleep, and I did not like to awaken you, fearing that you may be frightened. He (Gabriel) said: Your Lord has commanded you to go to the inhabitants of Baqi’ (to those lying in the graves) and beg pardon for them. I said: Messenger of Allah, how should I pray for them (How should I beg forgiveness for them)? He said: Say, Peace be upon the inhabitants of this city (graveyard) from among the Believers and the Muslims, and may Allah have mercy on those who have gone ahead of us, and those who come later on, and we shall, God willing, join you.

Sahih Muslim,Book 004, Number 2127

Derek Adams said...

Sami isn't giving the full story on Muta, Mohammed wasn't allowed them to engage in muta because they needed to give up "slowly", meaning social reforms take longer. Otherwise, why would muta be RESUMED when Muslims enter the paradise?

Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 3979; Muslim, 1407.

It was narrated from al-Rabee’ ibn Sabrah al-Juhani that his father told him that he was with the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) who said, “O people, I used to allow you to engage in mut’ah marriages, but now Allaah has forbidden that UNTIL THE DAY OF RESURRECTION, so whoever has any wives in a mut’ah marriage, he should let her go and do not take anything of the (money) you have given them.”

Derek Adams said...

Narrated 'Imran bin Husain:

Again on Muta:


The Verse of Hajj-at-Tamatu was revealed in Allah’s Book, so we performed it with Allah’s Apostle, and nothing was revealed in Qur'an to make it illegal, nor did the Prophet prohibit it till he died. But the man (who regarded it illegal) just expressed what his own mind suggested. (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 6, Book 60, Number 43)

Haecceitas said...

This debate was surprisingly polite and unemotional given the topic and location. And again, Sami did a better job than certain other Muslim debaters. But in the end it was still quite clear that he failed to establish his thesis.

Is there a recording of the Q & A by the way?

Mr E D said...

Very interesting and thought provoking debate. I would have loved to have heard the Q&A session as well.

Thanks

David Wood said...

Haecceitas said: 'Is there a recording of the Q & A by the way?'

I'll put it up in the next day or two. The footage is on Paul's brother's computer.

Joe Bradley said...

This posting may be a little off-topic for this thread, but I could find no other current venue in which to post it.

Apparently, all did not go so well at Arabfest 2012 in Dearbornistan.

If this has already been posted, please accept my apologies for the redundancy.

Mojo357 said...

I can't stand Sami trying to justify Child Rape! Did anyone else feel like slapping him?

TAREK said...

Hello Dr>
Well thank you very much and THANKS BE TO YAHWEH.
You toasted him. The only issue you did not put in the food was the issue of racism. muhammad sold two black slaves for one white slave and Sami called this equality.........
Sami is an excellent liar. And my question is when will a muslim accept the truth? But anyway CL said during his last show on ABN he said he was debating in other to convince himself.
Again please Sami do not reject your own sources.
Overall job well done.
Thank you Dr. David for your dedication.

Radical Moderate said...

Muta is like the nicotine patch for fornicators and rapists lol

taomeano said...

I am so surprised that a person of Sami Zaatari's calibre willfully ignores the evidence, misinterprets what the Quran clearly says and generally dismisses or tries to find a reason to explain the passages that are so damning to Mohammed. I have listened to Sami's debates, but in this debate David simply crushed Sami. Sami could not make a case why Mohammed should be a role model for society.
I will not be surprised if some in the audience especially the moslems will begin to have second thoughts about Islam and Mohammed and the deception and the lies they have bought into.

I pray God will open their eyes to see the truth.

Radical Moderate said...

Sammi said Muslism don't insult don't bash, are not offensive etc...

I guess he hasnt spent much time with Muslims in the Answering Christianity room on paltalk.

simple_truth said...

Guys, I don't normally like to say this, but it's true: David just lambasted Sami. Since debate outcomes are often very subjective, this one wasn't close. Sami was at a disadvantage once David began to speak.

Sami just wasn't able to adequately reply to almost every objection without appealing to circumstantial situations and/or ethics. He kept justifying Mohammad's morals as being OK. He didn't see any objection. Even in his last rebuttal, he said that all of his points stand. Wow! That takes some great courage and dishonesty to do.

Sami continually lied about Surah 9:5. I don't normally like to say lie unless it fits. In this case, I know that Sami has read other commentaries that do explain the historical background that attest to what David said. If he can lie about a very clear commentary, how can he be trusted. I know that one lie doesn't necessarily and shouldn't completely ruin his credibility and integrity; but, it makes it very hard for me to excuse him. For the record, it wasn't just about 9:5 that really disappointed me. It looks to me that Sami has to do whatever it takes to make his prophet look good. Integrity doesn't seem to be one of his strong points or his moral/ethical objective.

David, I do hope that those Muslims who were distraught over your presentation will actually study the historicity and context of your citations and have their eyes open to leave Islam.

Great presentation, David! You really landed a knockout blow from my perspective.

mkvine said...

Derek Adams,

I think you should debate David Wood on Muhammad. The topic would be "Muhammad: Madman or Demon Possessed?"

Derek Adams said...

Mkvine - I don't believe Mohammed existed, so that debate would be futile. Spencer did a great job of defending that proposition, and I came in on David's side, I had a bias toward his existence, but Spencer has really shown otherwise.

But I will debate any Jew/Christian Muslim on whether the Biblical Abraham or Moses existed.

As for who crushed who. I think David had the advantage with the topic.. I don't think it was an annilhation. Atleast Sami interacted with the rebuttals this time. But over all, when you are defending a losing proposition how can you win?

tiwas said...

I noticed Sami acted as if there were little points in David's speech when he theatrically flip his paper and said (I'm paraphrasing) "well, I guess that's all the points from David."

And the lack of applause after David's second rebuttal seems to suggest that most of the audience if not all were really distraught by David's points.

Whether the audience really felt the impact of this debate I think can be known in the Q&A session.

Looking forward for the Q&A session.

tiwas said...

Oh, by the way David, when you mention that Muhammad had 9 to 11 wives, it sounded like there was a voice (a lady if I'm not mistaken) from the audience that seems to say something. What was it?

aaron said...

if muhummed who sinned was a role model according to Islamic sources. I would ask what would that make jesus who did not sin?

simple_truth said...

Derek Adams said...

"Mkvine - I don't believe Mohammed existed, so that debate would be futile. Spencer did a great job of defending that proposition, and I came in on David's side, I had a bias toward his existence, but Spencer has really shown otherwise.

But I will debate any Jew/Christian Muslim on whether the Biblical Abraham or Moses existed.

As for who crushed who. I think David had the advantage with the topic.. I don't think it was an annilhation. Atleast Sami interacted with the rebuttals this time. But over all, when you are defending a losing proposition how can you win?"

Derek, I guess the outlook of the debate depends upon what you look at. I was looking at the fact that Mohammad was supposed to be most moral example for all of mankind; so, I judged him from a Christian perspective where objective morality is most important. It's not even a matter of Mohammad being barbaric than him being the true role model that has been ascribed to him.

Surely, there are so many examples of people after Mohammad that have a much higher moral standard than he and they weren't even presumed prophets. Wouldn't you agree?

One of my major problems with Mohammad's status is that he is too often given a moral relativistic positions to hide the obvious bad aspects; but, he is given a pass on the good parts regardless to time, place, and circumstances. In other words, the good parts are never bound to anything, whereas, the bad parts are always given some kind of time/circumstantial limitation. I find that an easy excuse to justify his deeds-good or bad.

David Wood said...

Tiwas said: "Oh, by the way David, when you mention that Muhammad had 9 to 11 wives, it sounded like there was a voice (a lady if I'm not mistaken) from the audience that seems to say something. What was it?"

I forget what she said exactly, but she said something to deny that Muhammad had more than four wives.

Michael said...

Excellent debate David!

It's amazing to see how every attempt Sami makes to explain his interpretations of the passages, you "simply" just read the entire section in its context over and over again to prove the point. Context is king... and I believe you hit the message home with your consistent explanations and reiterations of what kind of role model Muhammad is. Again, great debate and very respectful all around.

This is stretching it but is there any possibility to list out the many references you used unless there's another post you could point to. Thanks.

Witness said...

Did I hear Sami Zatari say that marriage is based on when a girl is ready and in the past 6 year olds were ready? When has a 6 year old ever been prepared to be married? To a 52 year old man? This is not how a role model behaves.

This was David's strongest debate performance thus far. He clearly outlined the traits that made "Prophet" Muhammad a bad role model. However, the topic may have been too easy considering all the horrible things Muhammad did. I guess only David can assess the difficulty level.

On the killing of apostates, the Hadith is clear, kill them.

My favorite rebuttal is when Sami Zatari and other Muslims say when the Qu'ran says beat your wife, it means don't hit them hard, leave a bruise, cause pain. Is that joke? They should read Karen Armstrong's book where she says Muhammad's companions wanted to beat their wives and Muhammad said okay in order to keep them happy.

Muhammad, like Charles Barkley, is not a role model. The only Muhammads that are role models Muhammad Ali and Muhammad Yunnus. Role models are exemplary individuals such as Mother Teresa, Pope John Paul and Nadir Ahmed.

Derek Adams said...

Simple truth said: "Surely, there are so many examples of people after Mohammad that have a much higher moral standard than he and they weren't even presumed prophets. Wouldn't you agree?"

Indeed. Mostly we get claims like "but that was in the seventh century, judge him by the standards of the time". Isn't that funny? When Muslims claim Islam is the FINAL RELIGION, meaning the essential pillars of morality and jurisprudence provided is FIXED for the rest of all time.

In fact this reminds me of Zaatari's response how "the first generation was the foundation, so they were allowed to give up muta, drinking etc slowly according to the prophet"

Yet in order to be consistent all Muslims who become Muslims would need to be treated equally. IT's not good enough to say "we need a foundation so this only happened to the first muslims", why is it the first generation Muslims were treated softly and given room and the Muslims today have to adhere to stricter conditions?

It's surprising Sami arbitrarily blindly accepts such reasoning with no good justification.

gabriella oak said...

@ Derek Adams

I am surprised at your surprise that Sami "arbitrarily blindly accepts such reasoning with no good justification. "

Sami is a Muslim arguing for Muhammad's suitability as a role model for mankind. Surely such a proposterous position in and of itself should signal his pre-existant "blind acceptance" of the unacceptable, lol.

Derek Adams said...

touché! Gabriella

minoria said...

In my opinion I think Sami no longer believes in Islam.

Really,he showed such a lack of interest and enthusiasm.He seemed not to believe what he was saying.

Since he is a member of the Muslim Debate Initiative he was just saying what he had to....it is the job.

That is my impression,that he will soon leave Islam.

Nakdimon said...

WOW! Man I havent had a laugh like this in a WHILE listening to someone trying to make a case for someone or something and EPICLY FAIL as Sami did in this debate. The INCREDIBLE dishonesty in the interpretations and presentations of Sami was mindboggling. And then to hear him go "all my points remain" at the end of the debate was just a screamer!

Derek, if you didnt think this was an annihilation then I would ask you what would be an annihilation. Sami presents his case of Muhammad, quoting his sources and either placing them in the wrong or not even bothering to cite which source he refers to and getting slammed by David (though gently) on every single point when David points the problem with either his reasoning or the true context of Sami's references.

Sami, back to the drawing board.

Sami, you had "no problem" with Mut'a because the Muslims were the first Muslims? I thought that was "the best generation of Muslims" of ANY generation. So how is it that the BEST generation of Muslims get "leaway" and get to wallow in adultery and prostitution with the blessing of your generous prophet, yet all inferior generations following that dont get any leaway? One would expect that the first/best generation living with a prophet is held to a higher standard than all other following generations.

There was so much, it was just guttwrenching to hear Sami defend his poor prophet against the Juggernaut! And I thought the Juggernaut was being nice still. If it were BBB it would have been vaporization. I'm not sure how familiar you guys are with the Mortal Kombat video game but BBB would have gone "Brutality" as in MK3.

TPaul said...

Excellent work David, I simply cannot see Sami being a "better" debater. He cowers from greusome facts of Islam just like any other Muslim debater would. He does not display any kind of honesty to admit that clearly, Mohammed took advantage of his status as a prophet and bent rules to suit his own convenience.
Imagine if we accepted Mohammed as a model for society, here in the west, life would be as chaotic as it is now in Islamic countries, where 9:29 is being practiced with unbelievers. We all know they are considered second class citizens in all Islamic countries.

Women would have to be veiled, subjucated and beaten.... yes beaten. We like to contest this fact here in the west, but it is a normal practice in Islamic countries. In reality women are nothing more than property in the lands of Islam.

I hope and pray Islam will reach it's apex here in the west with all the gullible being converted and done with, then will come the next phase where Islam will fizzle out because it's falsehood will be exposed without any room for special privilidges that it now enjoys..

Luke said...

Come on Q&A upload!! :) That's one of my favorite parts.

David, which do you prefer moderator filtered questions or open mic questions from the audience?

Michael Johnson said...

@Derek Adams, U say, " But I will debate any Jew/Christian Muslim on whether the Biblical Abraham or Moses existed. "

I do not understand, it is us whom have the PROOF in which the scriptures of antiquity surely hold. Just becuz U REFUSE to acknowledge the MANUSCRIPTS (in which are EVIDENCE ENOUGH)as a historical fact/per-say ARTIFACT Right? But please correct me when I ask this, are not MANUSCRIPTS ARTIFACTS?

Lets look at the DEFINITION for ARTIFACT:
1.An object made by a human being, typically an item of cultural or historical interest: "gold and silver artifacts".
2.Something observed in a scientific investigation or experiment that is not naturally present but occurs as a result of the preparative...: "widespread tissue infection may be a technical artifact

So going by this we can say "WRITING" IS NOT NATURALLY PRESENTED! So it is an ARTIFACT, Right?

But I am willing to LISTEN to your case on proving Moses and Abraham never existed!

THANX

Michael Johnson said...

Wow, David, the 2nd rebuttal U Killed Sami! How EMBARRASSING for the Muslims and ALL Christians need to watch this! Great job David!

jonnykzj said...

@David Wood

Well done bro. As for him saying Aisha was not troubled mentally, I say her very battle with one of her own fellow believers, Ali, who was even Muhammad's cousin and one of his most beloved, shows how mentally messed up she must've been.

Fifth Monarchy Man said...

David,

in the Q and A I hope you had the chance to point them to the only perfect role model for society

The contrast between our Lord and Mohammud could not be more stark in this regard


peace

andy bell said...

Does Samy Zatari suffer from "can't smile" disease? Is the man incapable of showing the faintest sign of happiness?

Sheesh...talk about charisma deficit.

Muslims always walk around serious, angry, and aggressive.

Yeah, what a debate. Is a 7th century arab who went around killing people, molesting little girls, and cutting off women's clitorides.....a good role model for society. Let me think about that one.

Richard said...

I listened to the first 6 minutes of the debate.

Firstly is Muhammad a good Role Model for Society? I dont think so. Not a person who has a woman's husband tortured and killed, her father and relatives killed and then has sex with her. Who enshrines this behaviour in his teachings and "holy" book which he claims comes from God, when he says you can have sex with women captured in war "what your right hand possesses". Not a person who raids other peoples property and robs and enslaves people. etc, etc.

But just some comments on Sami Zataari's (SZ) 1st 6 minutes.

1. SZ - Before we can say whether Muhammad is a good role model for modern society we have to look at the ills of modern society.

NO SZ that is, at the outset, wrong! To see whether Muhammad is a good role model or not you have to examine Muhammad and his examples and not modern society.

Anyway lets see the rest of your arguments (in the 1st 6 minutes)

2. SZ - There is a lot of poverty in modern society - true, and here SZ launches into how bad things are in America, and Muhammad said give Zakat to the poor.

Whereas the policy of giving Zakat to the poor is a good thing, Muhammad also said, take Jizya from the non-believers. Muhammad's economic model was to rob and enslave people then make them pay to enrich Muslims, who could then give a bit of that ill-gotten wealth to the poor. He dealt in slaves and the Arabs did well in this trade through the centuries.

When Muslim conquests ended so did their "Golden Age" and they sank back into the poverty such a system ensures. America and the west maybe in a relatively bad way today, but the solution is not the Islamic hells on Earth, which have adopted Muhammad's way. Countries such as Iran, Afghanistan, Sudan, Niger, Egypt, Libya, or Saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia who despite floating on oil have exported nothing else except for Salafi Islam and have a per capita income less than Israel with no oil at all.

3. SZ - there are "bad" people in the world. The really "bad" people are "oppressors", people who kill innocent people, Bigots and racists.

That's as far as I heard SZ.

Gosh SZ, you have nailed every one of the ills the "fundamentalist", (read those that follow your scriptures and the sayings and examples of Muhammad), Muslims are guilty of.

So is Muhammad a good role model?

Have a think SZ.

Richard said...

I listened a wee bit more

SZ The "prophet" Muhammad was insistent on looking after the orphans and the widows.

That's because Muhammad created so many orphans and widows, with his wars.

And the prettiest of the widows he kept for himself.

Derek Adams said...

Michael Johnson said: "Just becuz U REFUSE to acknowledge the MANUSCRIPTS (in which are EVIDENCE ENOUGH)as a historical fact/per-say ARTIFACT Right?"

What manuscripts and/or artifacts demonstrate the existence of Biblical Abraham and Moses?

mkvine said...

Derek,

If Jesus was truly resurrected by God, then all of his claims would have been vindicated by God. Because Jesus did truly believe in Moses as a historical person, then that would warrant sufficient evidence for Moses' existence (since Jesus' claims were backed by God). Given those premises, the only real question that remains was whether Jesus was truly resurrected in order for us to heed his authoritative claims. I think Dr. William Lane Craig, one of the foremost intellectuals of our time, gives a good case for it.

John Lollard said...

I know every Christian always says this about every Christian in every debate against a Muslim, but I think David objectively won. Sami's first argument was great in terms of showing Muhammad to be a good example, and had he kept the debate there he might have won. But he didn't keep it there. Instead, the rest of the debate was spent trying to neutralize the criticism of that David raised. So this debate turned out not to be on "Is Muhammad a Good Role Model?" but actually "Is Muhammad NOT a Terrible Role Model?"

Even if Sami had convinced a neutral audience that David's points weren't that bad, a neutral audience would ask if maybe there were a better role model who did those nice things in the opening speech without the messed-up stuff later. Like... I dunno, some other prophet.

Also, I found it weird that in the debate Same used the teachings of the Quran to show that Muhammad was a good role model. Does that not tacitly assume that Muhammad is the author of the Quran? Did anyone else catch that?

Derek Adams said...

Mkvine even if Jesus ressurected from the dead none of his claims would be vindicated, that's complete non-sequitor, Likewise if Jesus was born a virgin, that still doesn't prove he is from heaven.

But lets assume you are right, just to be nice.

Jesus ressurect's from the dead, Jesus says Biblical Moses existed which contradicts all known evidence we have about Egyptian and Canaanite history.

First according to such reasoning we would have to assume Jesus statement is more powerful than archaeological and historical evidence. But that doesn't follow. If you have two sources of evidence conflicting, then you need to have a sound explanation for why one is false, it's not good enough to say the dead man said it.

Second if ALL the known evidence we have demonstrates the biblical moses couldn of have existed, this means ALL evidence doesn't count for anything. If we say that evidence points to one conclusion but that conclusion is completely wrong, then evidence is a useless tool. If evidence can be deceptive and mislead us then we might aswell throw out the same historical method you use to argue that Jesus rose from the dead, because you are trying to use the same kind of approach.

mkvine said...

Derek,

I don't think its a non-sequitor given the context of his resurrection. Jesus consistently taught about the kingdom of God and his role in it. In his teachings concerning himself, he also tied in various figures like Noah and Moses. Eventually his teachings got him crucified. For God to then raise him from the dead would mean that his God vindicated him and his teachings. Therefore, if Jesus taught about Moses would mean that God vindicated that.

But since you assume I'm right, let's go with your next objections.

You said that Jesus teachings would have been more powerful than archeology. Well, if he received Divine backing for his teachings, and if God is the source of Truth and is Infallible, then yes that would be more powerful.

For your second point, you haven't demonstrated that the evidence conclusively shows that Moses wasn't a historical person.

Derek Adams said...

Mkvine, another non-sequitor. You firstly connected what Jesus said and taught with the resurrection itself, as if one has something to do with the other. If we used the same chain of reasoning then the Pharaohs priests and magicians using magic and the context provided means that the theology of the Egyptians must of been true, vindicating the message of the Pharaoh and his priests. But if both are true, we have two conflicting world views that are both true. Yet what is otherwise doubtful is that we know the precise message of Jesus, so I challenge you to establish the historical methodology and give us the exact message and teaching of Jesus.

You next said: "You said that Jesus teachings would have been more powerful than archeology. Well, if he received Divine backing for his teachings, and if God is the source of Truth and is Infallible, then yes that would be more powerful."

Again, Jesus resurrecting from the dead has nothing to do with how or who resurrected him. But now your saying the infallible source of truth overpowers archeology and historical methodology which means we can throw the same process you use to prove Jesus resurrected out the window.

Then you said I haven't shown Moses didn't exist. Well that's because people have tried to insert the story of Moses into Egyptian history and whatever timetable they attempt to force Moses into, Moses cannot fit. So I leave it up to you to provide the era you believe Moses and the Exodus took place, and I will show you that your Biblical Moses didn't exist in that era.

Derek Adams said...

Here you fo mkvine: http://www.answeringabraham.com/2012/07/ressurection-of-jesus-disproves.html

Feel free to refute me.

mkvine said...

Derek,

I think you are the one providing the non-sequitor. You tried to dismiss the resurrection of Jesus by comparing it with Pharaoh's magicians. You said that their magic would have vindicated the message of Pharaoh. Derek, if you actually know what magic is, its just an illusion or a trick, its not real. Just like a magician playing card tricks doesn't imply anything supernatural. Contrast this to Jesus resurrection, where God himself actually performed a miracle. This is something supernatural, not a trick. That is just a category fallacy on your part.

If Jesus resurrected from the dead, then it we have a divine miracle in our hands. That certainly speaks volumes about who was behind this - God.

I will grant you this, hypothetically speaking if there is equally valid evidence for the absence of Moses as there is for the reality of the Ressurection, then we would have two equally viable evidences that contradict. This would mean that evidence is useless as you claimed. If that's the case, then this would also back fire against your claim that Moses didn't exist, because the evidence would be useless. So in order to avoid the apparent conflict in the evidence you would have to: a). provide over whelming evidence against Moses' existence, and b). show that the evidence for the resurrection is weaker with respect to (a).

I suggest you take a look at this link for the resurrection:

http://www.reasonablefaith.org/jesus-resurrection

Lord Have Mercy, Amen.

Bfoali said...

David,

Is there any update on the QNA? I really can't wait to watch it.

To Derek and Mkvine,

A far more interesting discussion is about whether Socrates existed, or was just the star character in Plato's works, and Xenephon (sp?).

Or, whether Shakespeare really wrote the plays attributed to him.

Sorry, just thought I'd throw that in there.

David Wood said...

The Q&A footage is on Paul's brother's laptop down in Brooklyn (mine jammed up because the file was way too massive). I'll try to take a trip down and have the video up before the weekend.

Derek Adams said...

Mkvine you said: "if you actually know what magic is, its just an illusion or a trick, its not real. Just like a magician playing card tricks doesn't imply anything supernatural. Contrast this to Jesus resurrection, where God himself actually performed a miracle".

The problem is you are making a historical fallacy known as an anachronism.

Egyptian magician were not merely tricksters and pretenders. Learn from the scriptures yourself:

"Exo 7:11 Then Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerers. And they, the magicians of Egypt, did the same with their secret arts."

The Hebrew for "sorcerers" =

kâshaph
kaw-shaf'
A primitive root; properly to whisper a spell, that is, to inchant or practise magic: - sorcerer, (use) witch (-craft).

The Hebrew for magicians =

charṭôm
khar-tome'
From the same as H2747; a horoscopist (as drawing magical lines or circles): - magician.

Enchantments/Secret Arts =

lahaṭ
lah'-hat
From H3857; a blaze; also (from the idea of enwrapping) magic (as covert): - flaming, enchantment.

Now apart from the magicians and sorcerers having their own special powers, they also used these dark arts to accomplish some of the same signs as God:

"Exo 7:11 Then Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerers. And they, the magicians of Egypt, DID THE SAME WITH THEIR SECRET ARTS."

Exo_7:22 And the magicians of Egypt DID SO WITH THEIR SECRET ARTS. And Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he did not listen to them, as Jehovah had said.

Exo_8:7 And the magicians did so with their secret arts, AND BROUGHT UP FROGS UPON THE LAND OF EGYPT.

Next you said:

"b). show that the evidence for the resurrection is weaker with respect to"

Not only is it "weaker", it's literally a historically impossible claim to make.

So much for Jesus proving the existence of Moses and Abraham.

Dk out.

mkvine said...

Derek,

That just makes matters worse for you. First of all, by the mere fact that the magicians are consulting evil spirits to perform these signs would not vindicate then, it would discredit them. God created the evil spirits and would therefore have authority and power over them. By contrast God performed the miracles through Moses and since God is all powerful and infallible, then that would mean these Miracles are vindicated since they have their source in God.

Second, think of this scenario: I make a rabbit appear out of a hat supernaturally by divine intervention. This is truly a miracle. However, if a magicians also performs the same thing (making a rabbit come out of hat), does that mean that his work is supernatural as well? No because unlike myself, who received divine intervention, the Magician used illusions and tricks to bring about the same result. Therefore, these two performances are non-comparable, since one has its source in God and the other has it in trickery. The same would hold for the Magicians in Moses' time that could do some of the same things he did.

Third, the Magicians' tricks could only take them so far. Eventually, their tricks were not good enough to perform the powerful miracles that God was doing through Moses. For example, when Moses made gnats appear, the Magicians could no longer replicate this miracle (Exodus 8:18). In fact, they realize their incompetency and said "Then the magicians said to Pharaoh, "This is the finger of God." But Pharaoh's heart was hardened, and he would not listen to them, as the LORD had said" (Exodus 18:19). Furthermore, when Moses sent boils on the magicians, they could no longer take it "And the magicians could not stand before Moses because of the boils, for the boils came upon the magicians and upon all the Egyptian" (Exo. 9:11). If the magicians were just as powerful as God, then they would have been able to cure themselves and the egyptians from the boils and would have been able to cast boils on Moses. But they didn't. This clearly shows the Supremacy of God's power over that of the magicians' tricks.

Finally, as for the apparent conflict in evidence. You did not provide a solid case for a). Show overwhelming evidence against Moses' existence (In fact, you didn't even mention it). For b). show that the resurrection of Jesus is weaker with respect to (a). All you said was thats not possible to show. Sorry, but merely saying it is not going to prove it. You need to show evidence for why it would be weaker.

Lord Have Mercy, Amen.

Richard said...

@ Derek Adams, had a glance at your posts.

1. True that one person cannot be a role model for an entire society, a successful general can be a good role model for a soldier etc, but here the meaning of "role model" is taken as a person to look up to as a moral example, the "perfect exemplar" that you allude to. Muhammad fails singularly by that definition.

2. Giving of charity in Islam is as you pointed out not charity. Moreover as a sustainable economic system it is a complete failure, as demonstrated amply by evidence. You judge a tree by its fruit.

3. The position on apostates and blasphemy in Islam is clear - it calls for the death sentence, to be executed by Muslims (vigilantism)

4. As for your diversion on whether Abraham existed or not - this is irrelevant to whether Muhammad is a good "role model" or not. But the stories invented about Abraham by Muhammad and in the Quran, which was largely his compilation anyway, were obviously fabricated.

Muhammad and Islam needed to have Abraham in Mecca whereas the Jews did not need to have Abraham in any place. They did not have a motive for fabricating that part of history and thus could give a narration as it happened.

The absense of motive in a witnesses account, makes the witness far more reliable.

Derek Adams said...

Richard thanks for your comments, only part I disagree with is the "diversion", I merely answered the question, since I can't debate a topic when I don't agree with either of the premises. I added that since Spencer did such a great job of discrediting the existence of Mohammed the only thing left to debate "with Christians" would be whether we could use arguments like Spencer's against the Biblical Characters like Moses and Abraham.

-Dk

Derek Adams said...

Mkvine,

I am not appealing to Exodus because I believe the Bible is authoritative on these matters. If anything exodus was written by the enemy of the Pharaoh hence we would expect Egyptian divine activity to be attributed to evil spirits. Yet this is a red herring, since all my point was covering was supernatural phenomena cannot vindicate Egyptian mythology. Likewise no miracle in the New Testament can vindicate Christian-Jewish theology. To make this clear every time you assume the origin of the miracle is from the one true living God in the context of the resurrection, but yet you don't assume Egyptian theology when we discuss the divine miracles of Egyptians. I will not beg the question and assume the origins of any of the miracles regardless of any theological narrative, whether Jewish or Egyptian. This is not part of any historical methodology, and as I said part of the reason why we say these claims about historical miracles are impossible on any historical grounds.

"God created the evil spirits and would therefore have authority and power over them"

Now apart from injecting your own non-historical theology into this, you think this does you any favor for some reason. You would be wrong. This proves God created spirits that have powers which means that it could of been one of these spirits that raised Jesus from the dead. All we have now is another possibility and since we aren't tied to any narrative it is a genuine possibility. But since we are not using any biblical or theology inerrancy here, this is another non-historical assumption, that none of us can grant, I'm sorry.

Your second point you still seem to assume the Magicians are using trickery even though you've already conceded they are appealing to real demonic powers. You also still seem to assume you can suggest the origin of what is a miracle and what is just trickery. Of course you didn't apply the "best explanation" historical hypothesis to the Pharoahs, you only selectively cherry picked the Ressurection. So of course this is just theological bias and nothing to do with history.

Derek Adams said...

Your last two points are not worth addressing since the third one assumes biblical and theological inerrancy and your last one just begs the question when I've already explained why historians cannot claim "miracles" are part of history. I explained that in the link I gave as well.

Ultimately it comes down to this, historians are not theological judges or juries, they don't decide the origin of any supernatural activity sir, nor can we on historical or scientific grounds. Historians can't even explain the phenomena only in terms of materialism either, nor can they, as they are not philosophers making these sort of determinations.

But since you persistently want to jump into world view discussions, then yes we can give our perspectives. I say it is irrational to claim "God" raised Jesus from the dead, since that is the least likely sound explanation of the data considering our scientific background and knowledge of our sometimes misleading senses, biology, the impossibility of testing the hypothesis, contradiction of inviolable fixed laws and impossible philosophical justification, and the untestable nature of the claim of "God" itself:

http://www.answeringabraham.com/2012/03/why-historical-ressurection-argument.html

http://www.answeringabraham.com/2012/07/ressurection-of-jesus-disproves.html

So if we asked ourselves the question: "Does Theism or Naturalism best explain the historical data", I would argue Naturalism in the case of all history since Theism actually is the fundamental lack of explanation and anything useful. Dogma never really did explain anything, it only asserted it.

Richard said...

Derek, I haven't had a detailed look at Robert Spencer's argument against the existence of Muhammad.

From what I can make out the main argument against his existence is the fact that his history was written long after his death and the evidence of the first written Quran is also long after it was supposed to have been written.

I think evidence of his existence, his grave etc, outweighs the doubts of his existence. The historical Muhammad may have been different from the mythical Muhammad created by the Muslims. But even here I think we can form a very good idea of the character of Muhammad and he comes out as a very real person, albeit not a very charming one, probably suffering from epilepsy and megalomania. Someone very akin to Jim Jones of Jonestown fame. And certainly not one to be emulated by a sane and benevolent society.

Derek Adams said...

Richard, here you go:

http://www.answeringabraham.com/2012/06/news-for-my-atheist-friends-did.html

I think David Wood said it best, when he pointed out the existence of two Muhammad's are under question here. In Spencer's p.o.v. Firstly the "Islamic Mohammed" written about in the hadiths and accepted by mainstream Muslims, that Mohammed certainly didn't exist in history. So we can argue that Mohammed categorically did not exist. The second possible Mohammed, is the "historical Mohammed", and Wood suggests that Spencer is "agnostic" about his existence.

I would like to know more about that, but to me, off hand, if you are appealing to the possible historical Mohammed, then I can't see how saying "this is his grave" is an argument. I mean do you have a tombstone that dates to his time? can you test and examine his bones? Obviously that's why this is not "positive evidence" in that sense, which is why I think Spencer would remain to be agnostic here.

So the question is identical with regard to Abraham and Moses. There may have been a possible Moses and Abraham (we would have to be atheist/agnostic about the historical persons), but the "Biblical version" , similar to the "Islamic version of Mohammed", that version we know cannot have existed.

Richard said...

I think we are talking at cross purposes or maybe there is a difference of definitions/ concepts of what is "real".

If you read the Iliad or the Odyssey, you can easily make out the myth from what is quite probably the real story. That Ulysses actually travelled to the various Islands of Greece or fought at Troy is most believable. That it was embellished with stories of the magic potion, the sirens etc can be either totally disbelieved or read between the lines.

Agreed there is no scientific evidence of Muhammad's existence. It is unlikely that Muslims will allow his (alleged) grave to be exhumed. Not least because it is believed he is alive inside his grave - it would put that myth to rest.

But failing that we can judge on the evidence - much as you would in a court murder trial case, where there is only circumstantial evidence. You can usually form a pretty good idea whether the person is guilty or not even if he gets acquitted according to the law.

In my country we had a recent case where a guy was tried for murdering his brother-in-law. You could tell he was guilty as hell, but he was unfortunately acquitted.

Without going too deeply into the matter - I think Muhammad did exist and his exploits and character was much like it is depicted in the Muslim scriptures and the character of Allah, which was also modelled after him.

Similarly I think that Abraham and Moses did exist. To challenge their existence you will have to come up with a reason why the Jews would have to (or would have wanted to) invent these individuals.

Richard said...

PS I just had a glance at your website and also the WSJ article.

You have written "The first person to actually suggest there is no evidence for his existence but no evidence against it, leading to a kind of 'skeptical agnosticism' was actually a Muslim! "

That seemed incredible to me and sure enough it is not true.

How could a person reach such a conclusion and still remain a Muslim? And I did a little search and found that this "Muhammad" Sven Kalisch, is "Muhammad" Sven Kalisch no more - praise Jesus :)

http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sven_Kalisch

I think this sums it up nicely:

"I believe neither his existence nor his non-existence can be proven. I, however, lean towards the non-existence but I don't think it can be proven. It is my impression that, unless there are some sensational archeological discoveries -- an Islamic "Qumran" or "Nag Hammadi" -- the question of Muhammad's existence will probably never be finally clarified."

I without the deep study lean towards the existence.

mkvine said...

Derek,

I know you are an agnostic, I wasn't expecting you to use the Bible as your authority. That point was irrelevant. You said we would "expect the enemy of Pharaoh" to attribute evil spirits to them. That's a nice theory, but you didn't prove it. Given the pagan society of Egypt, its not far fetch to say that the egyptians of that time engaged in practices such as magic and conjuring up spirits, irrespective of whether those practices were authentic or not. Furthermore, if you are using the Bible to make theological claims like evil spirits vindicating Pharaoh, then you are being inconsistent because the same Bible discredits evil spirits.

You said "all my point was covering was supernatural phenomena cannot vindicate Egyptian mythology." Good, I'm glad we agree.

Then you said that the New Testament miracles cannot vindicate Christian theology. This is another theological statement. As I previously said, the reason why egyptian theology cannot be vindicated is because their source is not in God, who is infallible, while Jesus' resurrection is.

Then you said I don't assume Egyptian theology when I discuss their "miracles." Derek, you are the one that brought them up. Not me. So when I go to the Exodus sources that you brought up, it says that they were magicians and invokers of evil spirits. So I did take that into consideration and explained why that would not vindicate them. If you want to come up with unsubstantiated theories to explain Egyptian theology away, go for it. Yet, it would be quite ironic for a naturalist to do that.

With respect to not assuming the origins of miracles, again, you are the one that appealed to the magicians to vindicate them (a theological claim), not me. Then you chastise me for explaining why your theological objections do not work. You say you go by the historical method. OK, then stop making theological claims.

As for not being able to assess the historicity of the resurrection, if you read the article I sent you, Dr. Craig explains what is the best explanation given all the historical facts surrounding Jesus' death, burial and postmortem appearances and makes the case for the resurrection. If that's the case, then Jesus' teachings would have been vindicated because he was put to death for them, but later caused to be resurrected.

(Continued)

mkvine said...

(Continued)

You then raised the possibility that evil spirits could have raised Jesus from the dead. As for someone who abhors theology and claims to go adhere strictly to history, you are being quite inconsistent in raising yet another theological objection. But even if this were true, it actually only makes matters worse for you as naturalist. The reason is because if the reasons Dr. Craig provides for the resurrection are factual, then that still means there was a supernatural event - irregardless of whether it was from God or evil spirits. This would contradict your worldview as a naturalist. Now the question would be, who raised him from the dead? First, according to Jesus' own testimony, it would be God himself. Jesus said that God would raise him up, and he was risen. The Apostles also said the same thing. Second, the question of whether evil spirits are even capable of raising people from the dead in the first place, becomes a theological question. As such, the Bible reserves this right to God alone. Therefore, it would have been God who raised him.

You keep saying we need to focus on history. I agree. Dr. Craig using the historical method, lists various historical facts surrounding the death, burial and post-mortem appearances of Christ. The question now becomes, what do we do with all of these facts and how do we explain them as a coherent whole and not in an Ad Hoc manner? You are free to offer your own explanations for them, just be sure if Dr. Craig hasn't already refuted them. I agree with Dr. Craig, that the best explanation which would take into account all the facts is the Resurrection.

This brings me to my last point, if you want to prove your contention you would need to show that a). There is overwhelming evidence against Moses' existence, and b). Show that the evidence for the Resurrection is weaker with respect to (a). I have asked you multiple times to prove those contentions, to no avail :(

God Bless

Derek Adams said...

Well Richard, I understand you believe a historical character resembling Mohammed existed. I think the debate I've linked to, Spencer won. He also has the weight of reason on his side. David simply can't answer questions like why "Mohammed" would ever appear on a coin with a "Cross" on it, if he was supposedly a leader of a cult that was anti-Christian and anti-Cross. This is just merely one example David fails to address. And this one example alone is enough to show how truly unthinkable and blasphemous this would have been. The history of the 7th century looks nothing like we would expect it to, if a kind of "Islamic Mohammed" existed. But since that has already been debated, no need to go back beat a dead horse. We will just disagree. And you probably won't change your mind after viewing the debate. (David didn't either).

With regard to Abraham and Moses (and the rest of this legend), this is all addressed under the "Judaism" tab at my blog. Take care.

Derek Adams
www.AnsweringAbraham.com

David Wood said...

Derek,

Where in the world are you getting claims like "David simply can't answer questions like why "Mohammed" would ever appear on a coin with a "Cross" on it, if he was supposedly a leader of a cult that was anti-Christian and anti-Cross."

Actually, I didn't even try to respond, because I thought it was one of Robert's weakest points (in the debate and in the book). To conclude that Muhammad didn't exist because later Muslims put Muhammad on a coin along with a cross seems to me a tremendous leap. It would require us to reason as follows:

(1) According to LATE Muslim tradition, Muslims don't like the symbol of the cross.
(2) Therefore, no earlier Muslims would ever use the symbol of the cross.
(3) But earlier Muslims did use the symbol of the cross.
(4) Hence, Muhammad didn't exist.

So this is the sort of reasoning that persuades you? And this is the sort of reasoning you assume I can't address if I lay it aside in favor of more interesting points? As a matter of fact, I can think of all kinds of reasons Muslims might put Muhammad on a cross. But there isn't much need, since the conclusion simply doesn't follow.

Derek Adams said...

David, that's a brilliant distortion and straw man. You just assumed that because the narrative was part of late Islamic tradition it therefore has no basis in an earlier core. Argument from silence. And given your position, (that something like the Islamic Mohammed existed), there is no reason to believe this. Oh yeah, and I WASN'T AWARE THAT 4:157-159 was part of "LATE ISLAMIC TRADITION" = "THEY KILLED HIM NOT... get ready for this: "NOR CRUCIFIED HIM".

And this slanderous narrative of him dying by crucifixion is made possible all through THE JEWS, the worst enemies of the Muslims. So no I don't take this lightly. And simply distorting what Spencer argue won't work.

Derek Adams said...

Mkvine said: "Given the pagan society of Egypt, its not far fetch to say that the egyptians of that time engaged in practices such as magic and conjuring up spirits, irrespective of whether those practices were authentic or not."

That's a nice theory, but it's a non-sequitor. And I've already addressed this. Even your own book testifies to the fact that their Egyptian practices were supernatural, even able to replicate some of the same miracles as God. Now if you accuse them of being inauthentic (of which you have no evidence), we then can apply the same explanations you use to reject the authenticity of the Egyptian miracles, to your own scriptures.

With regard to your next point about the Bible discrediting evil spirits, I challenge you to present a passage in the exodus where the sorcerers and magicians and their spirits are called evil or said to be using phoney, fake or fraudulent tricks and tactics. So far I see no inconsistency at all. But even if you could show such a passage that wouldn't mean I am "inconsistent" as you put it, as in order to be inconsistent I would have to believe the Bible contained a consistent or historical narrative, of which I don't. I am only showing you the Bible shows these magicians had real supernatural talents and gifts. The bible's "opinion" on the "source" of these arts is as irrelevant as the Egyptians opinions themselves. That is a non-historical question.

Next you repeat the same claims I've already addressed, so I won't be beating a dead horse: "the reason why egyptian theology cannot be vindicated is because their source is not in God, who is infallible, while Jesus' resurrection is."

The only new part is the accusation that I am making a theological claim. I am not appealing to any magicians to vindicate any theology, I am referencing your book to show you magicians had supernatural powers according to your narrative and in the Egyptian narrative too.

I've already addressed why it is impossible to claim anyone in history rose from the dead (using historical sources and historical methodology alone), in the links I've given, hence no need to go over Craig.

Derek Adams said...

That's not a historical approach at all, as I've already pointed out the only philosophical questions we can ask is "Does naturalism or supernatural Theism best explain all historical data?". And unfortunately, we both already know the answer.

Next you say: "you are being quite inconsistent in raising yet another theological objection". That's because you brought it up. And it's not an objection, it's a possibility. If you make claims, and fabricate whatever entities you like, then you have to deal with the consequences of those claims. And no we are not limited to your "bible text", because we are not discussing Biblical "theology" as I pointed out.

"irregardless of whether it was from God or evil spirits."

Actually I've already linked to my link which shows that the "supernatural hypothesis" is only one theory, and it's not the most plausible one. In fact it's a faith claim to claim a resurrection "is a supernatural event" until you know everything about this universe, it remains a faith claim. But I mentioned a few other possibilities as well.

"First, according to Jesus' own testimony, it would be God himself. Jesus said that God would raise him up, and he was risen. The Apostles also said the same thing."

Jesus said it in the gospel narrative, not a historical narrative. The apostles didn't say it anywhere in the gospels or in history. I have no idea what you are talking about with them. Then you claim the Bible reserves the right to make all and any theological claims. Okay? I don't know what this has to do with anything. Anyone can make any theological claim. "The bible says it was God therefore God raised him". lol, c'mon. You are making me laugh here.

"I have asked you multiple times to prove those contentions, to no avail :("

Actually I've already addressed that but you never answered me =(
But I don't really expect an answer, since the question itself is on the lines of rhetorical, no where can Moses be put anywhere demonstrating the proposition itself hehehe.

Mkvine, since you aren't adding anything of substance. I will now only be addressing "new" claims that you make. Good luck.

Richard said...

Ok I finally waded though the debate, after which I am convinced more than ever that Muhammad did exist and that moreover he was very much like the character depicted in the Muslim scriptures.

1. It is incredible that Muslims would invent such a character and all those stories just to shore up and "unite" the Arabic conquests.

2. Sure they invented some stories, such as him seeing angels where he won some battle etc, but in the case of pure invention they surely would've invented better stories than the horrible but very human character of Muhammad.

3. There are plenty of alternate explanations to Robert Spencer's arguments, which are far more plausible than the ones he offers.

4. There are also plausible explanations to the evidence he offers for which he can think of no explanation. The ignorance of the new religion of Islam by the early Christians, such as calling then Saracens, is very believable. We have ignorance even today with all our technological progress.

5. What both David and Robert Spencer have omitted is what they say is absense of independent evidence from non-Muslim sources. Actually there is evidence, which is the clincher.

You can find it here:

http://christianorigins.com/islamrefs.html#doctrinajacobi

David Wood said...

Wow. I don't usually read DK's comments, but I've generally assumed that he has some clue what he's talking about. That illusion has now been shattered.

DK wrote: "David, that's a brilliant distortion and straw man. You just assumed that because the narrative was part of late Islamic tradition it therefore has no basis in an earlier core. Argument from silence."

What earlier core? I thought your claim was that Muhammad never existed? So what's the evidence for the earlier core? What are your sources that the early Muslim community despised the symbol of the cross? Wait . . . I thought there was no early Muslim community! If there was no such community, you have no evidence of their beliefs. So how can you tell me that later views about the cross had an early origin? You're just being silly and contradicting yourself!

DK wrote: "And given your position, (that something like the Islamic Mohammed existed), there is no reason to believe this."

Of course there's reason. There's the Principle of Embarrassment, which historians use all the time. But this is irrelevant to the issue at hand, which is whether I can answer the (supposedly devastating) charge that Muhammad appeared on coins with a cross.

DK said: "Oh yeah, and I WASN'T AWARE THAT 4:157-159 was part of "LATE ISLAMIC TRADITION" = "THEY KILLED HIM NOT... get ready for this: "NOR CRUCIFIED HIM"."

I can't make sense of this. According to 4:157, Jesus wasn't crucified. What does this have to do with Muslims despising the symbol of the cross? The Qur'an commands Muslims to crucify people for various crimes. So they obviously didn't have much problem with the cross. Indeed, the symbol of the cross could have been a warning to non-Muslims. What, then, is the connection between (a) not believing Jesus died by crucifixion, and (b) never allowing images of a cross? There are so many gaps in your reasoning, there's no safe way to get from one side to the other!

DK said: "And this slanderous narrative of him dying by crucifixion is made possible all through THE JEWS, the worst enemies of the Muslims. So no I don't take this lightly. And simply distorting what Spencer argue won't work."

I gave the sort of argument that would be necessary for a coin with Muhammad on a cross to be some kind of devastating argument against his existence. If you know of a clearer connection between (1) Muhammad on a coin with a cross and (2) Muhammad not existing, please formulate the argument for me.

As for Spencer, he presents the claim as one circumstantial piece of a larger puzzle (and I would agree with that much). But you tried to spin it as some kind of knock-down, unanswerable problem. This only shows that you really have no clue what you're talking about.

Derek Adams said...

David said: "You're just being silly and contradicting yourself!"

David that was awful. I beg you to continue you ignoring my comments if these are the sort of responses you want to make. Firstly, given your position, we cannot assume there is no earlier core to those hadith narrations, as that would be an argument from silence. You are the one who has to explain where Imam Muslim got his report from. If we believe there was a real Islamic Mohammed, and a Muslim community and the general history is accurate then we cannot assume this report was a later fabrication, rather the report was passed down, which presupposes the story is somewhat earlier, not LATE tradition, given your view.

You ask: "(a) not believing Jesus died by crucifixion, and (b) never allowing images of a cross? "

Notice, since you admit Muslims used crucifixion as a punishment, yet now you've made your situation ten times worse. Since the "cross" was used as a punishment for those who made war AGAINST Allah and his Apostle.

Thus the Apostle would not be associated with the cross, but those who OPPOSE him were. The ones he had killed, humiliated and exiled.

Therefore to believe the Muslims would CONNECT Mohammed with their instrument of punishment and torture is UTTERLY retarded and ludicrous.

Thank you for further strengthening my position, there is no possible way Mohammed could be identified or associated with the cross. Not only because this was a slanderous lie conceived of by the Jews against Issa, but it was the same instrument to use against the enemies of Islam. And you are trying to connect Mohammed with that? hahaha. seriously I am loling hahaha. my god.

But apart from all the evidence showing why the cross could not be associated with Mohammed, you still haven't come up with a plausible explanation for your own position. Why WOULD the cross be associated with Mohammed? That's a complete non-sequitor. There is utterly no reason or justification to believe such nonsense.

Derek Adams said...

Richard, thanks for the link, I am familiar with the evidence. But that is all addressed in his book. For an example I recommend watching my question to Spencer (in his first debate with the two Muslims) at the Q&A. David has not even contested the dubious nature of these references providing "positive evidence" for Mohammed either..

mkvine said...

Derek,


Derek,

Just to let you know, calling something a non-sequitor, doesn't make it so, no matter how many times you say it. The point still remains that in pagan society, magic and sorcery was common practice, unless you give us good reasons not to believe that. But you have't, and calling it a non-sequitor is not going to prove it. Besides, YOU are the one that offered the magicians of Pharaoh as your rebuttal. You use them when it suits you, but you reject them when they don't. How convenient.

The whole premise of your argument seems to be this: Jesus resurrection was a supernatural event, but the magicians also performed supernatural events, therefore since they conflict, supernatural events are discounted. First of all, this is another theological objection so you, again, are inconsistent. Second, I already responded that just because they can do some of the same miracles does not mean that they were supernatural (see a few posts earlier). Third, even if they were supernatural that does not mean it would vindicate them because they do not have their source in God, who is infallible. Fourth, we know they didn't have their source in God because God himself was commanding Moses to go AGAINST the magicians. Fifth, the magicians themselves realized that they could not match God in power. Finally, its irrelevant what the magicians did because even if they did perform supernatural events (albeit non-vindicated ones) it would contradict your worldview as a naturalist.

Next you said "I am referencing your book to show you magicians had supernatural powers according to your narrative and in the Egyptian narrative too." Already responded, see above paragraph.

Then you said "I've already pointed out the only philosophical questions we can ask is "Does naturalism or supernatural Theism best explain all historical data?" Right, we both have the same historical facts surrounding the resurrection of Christ. The question is what is the best explanation of those facts. We are both approaching this with certain philosophical frameworks to answer the question, you are using naturalism. That's fine, but you didn't offer a positive case of how on naturalism you can explain all the historical facts surrounding the crucifixion. If all of the naturalist possibilities fail to explain the facts surrounding the resurrection, then that would mean you have no answer on your worldview. So at best that would just leave you at agnosticism, and therefore you cannot discount the resurrection as a possibility.

(continued)

mkvine said...

(continued)

You then complain that I accused you of being inconsistent for bringing up theological points. You then said I was the one that brought it up. No Derek, you brought it up. You went to Exodus to bring up the magicians to make a theological point. All it takes is a few scrolls up to see that. Please don't try to back out of it when I responded to you.

You said that the "supernatural hypothesis is only one theory." This is seriously a befuddling statement coming from someone who claims to be a naturalist. You then said that we don't know everything about the universe, so the resurrection is just a faith claim. Well Derek, by that logic, then since you don't know everything about the universe then you can't deny it either. So at best that just leaves you at agnosticism. If you assert that the Ressurection did NOT occur, you need to give us justifiable reasons for that. So again, the point remains, given the facts surrounding the resurrection, what is the best explanation. You haven't offered your case.

Then you bring up the red herring about the Gospels not being a historical narrative. First of all, my response was to your theological point about evil spirits being able to resurrect people. That was not a historical point on your part. So when I give a theological answer concerning Jesus, the Apostles, you suddenly forget your theological point and run to a historical point. Not very consistent. Second, as for "having no idea" where the Apostles make this claim, you assume that the gospels are our only source of information concerning the Apostles, that is false. We have the book of Acts and the Epistles, it talks about the Apostles and Jesus' resurrection.

"Okay? I don't know what this has to do with anything. Anyone can make any theological claim." Yeah, your the one that's making them. If you don't like my responses, then stop making them :)

"Actually I've already addressed that but you never answered me." Nope you never did. You never provided any solid case against Moses' existence. As for the Ressurection, the best you had to offer was the magicians. Um yeah…not very convincing.

As for not providing anything new, I think you would do well if you follow your own advice. You haven't offered your case against Moses and the Ressurection, so that just leaves me with your repeated arguments about "magicians."

God Bless

David Wood said...

RESPONSE TO DK, PART ONE

DK,

I'm absolutely shocked when I read how silly your comments are. I genuinely thought you were knowledgeable. Now that I've actually read a few of your comments, you seem to have no clue what my position is, or what Robert's arguments are, or what the evidence is. In other words, you're sitting here arguing when you should be trying to learn something! Is this your general approach (i.e. rushing in with words flailing and no idea what's going on)?

DK said: "Firstly, given your position, we cannot assume there is no earlier core to those hadith narrations, as that would be an argument from silence. You are the one who has to explain where Imam Muslim got his report from. If we believe there was a real Islamic Mohammed, and a Muslim community and the general history is accurate then we cannot assume this report was a later fabrication, rather the report was passed down, which presupposes the story is somewhat earlier, not LATE tradition, given your view."

What exactly is my position, DK? My position is that (1) Muhammad, the prophet of Islam, existed, and that, nevertheless, (2) Muslims invented all kinds of things (e.g. miracle stories, confirmation of Muhammad's prophethood from Christians and Jews, etc.), but that (3) they invented things they believed would somehow help their case, not hurt it. Why would Muslims invent miracle stories and stories about Christians and Muslims confirming Muhammad's prophethood? Because they were interacting with Christians and Jews, and they needed to bolster their case.

Now, if I am confronted with (a) early evidence that Muhammad appeared on coins with a cross, and (b) late evidence that Muslims despised the symbol of the cross, am I somehow obligated, given my position, to assume that the early Muslims despised the symbol of the cross? Not at all. Indeed, given my method, I could conclude all kinds of reasons that would account for (a) and (b). For instance, as Muslims were trying to win converts in the early years, they appealed to the image of the cross, but later, when they dominated the Christians, they came to despise the image of the cross, and they wrote this into their history, as they so often did. How does this not fit the evidence? (I could also conclude, consistently with the evidence, that the late traditions were identical with the early traditions, and that Muslims always despised the cross, but that for several decades of the first century, Muslims used the image of the cross in order to deceive their enemies into believing that Islam is friendly towards Christianity--i.e. Taqiyya).

DK said: "Notice, since you admit Muslims used crucifixion as a punishment, yet now you've made your situation ten times worse. Since the "cross" was used as a punishment for those who made war AGAINST Allah and his Apostle. Thus the Apostle would not be associated with the cross, but those who OPPOSE him were. The ones he had killed, humiliated and exiled. Therefore to believe the Muslims would CONNECT Mohammed with their instrument of punishment and torture is UTTERLY retarded and ludicrous."

Wow. The last time I went around calling people "retarded," I was in 6th grade. It's good to see the level of argumentation is so sophisticated. How old are you? But as for your argument, you didn't get the point. Yes, Muhammad was commanded to crucify enemies of Islam. You say that Muslims therefore would never associate Muhammad with the cross. But if the message of the coins was "Here comes Muhammad, and he comes with a cross to crucify all who stand in his way," this would fit perfectly with the Qur'an, with the evidence from the coins, and with Muslims not believing Jesus was crucified.

David Wood said...

RESPONSE TO DK, PART TWO

DK said: "But apart from all the evidence showing why the cross could not be associated with Mohammed, you still haven't come up with a plausible explanation for your own position. Why WOULD the cross be associated with Mohammed? That's a complete non-sequitor. There is utterly no reason or justification to believe such nonsense."

On the contrary, I've offered multiple ways of accounting for ALL of the available evidence (and I could easily come up with more). You can't account for anything, because you don't understand the evidence or the arguments on the table. Instead, you simply call me "retarded" and pretend that you've answered me. Pitiful!

Derek Adams said...

Mkvine said:

"The point still remains that in pagan society, magic and sorcery was common practice, unless you give us good reasons not to believe that."

No one is disputing that.

Here is what you actually said:

" Given the pagan society of Egypt, its not far fetch to say that the egyptians of that time engaged in practices such as magic and conjuring up spirits, irrespective of whether those practices were authentic or not."

And that my friend is a non-sequitor, BECAUSE your Bible has already corrected you. The "authenticity" of these replications are not magic tricks, but divine interventions. So please continue making non-sequitors for all to see.

Mkvine said: "Besides, YOU are the one that offered the magicians of Pharaoh as your rebuttal. You use them when it suits you, but you reject them when they don't. "

Consistently begging the question, when I've already addressed this:

"Now if you accuse them of being inauthentic (of which you have no evidence), we then can apply the same explanations you use to reject the authenticity of the Egyptian miracles, to your own scriptures.

With regard to your next point about the Bible discrediting evil spirits, I challenge you to present a passage in the exodus where the sorcerers and magicians and their spirits are called evil or said to be using phoney, fake or fraudulent tricks and tactics.

So far I see no inconsistency at all. But even if you could show such a passage that wouldn't mean I am "inconsistent" as you put it, as in order to be inconsistent I would have to believe the Bible contained a consistent or historical narrative, of which I don't. I am only showing you the Bible shows these magicians had real supernatural talents and gifts. The bible's "opinion" on the "source" of these arts is as irrelevant as the Egyptians opinions themselves. That is a non-historical question."

You said: "The whole premise of your argument seems to be this: Jesus resurrection was a supernatural event, but the magicians also performed supernatural events, therefore since they conflict, supernatural events are discounted."

No the events are not discounted. It's simple fallacy. Miracle Event X occurs, therefore it was Yahweh. Does not follow. Claiming to know the "origin" of any supernatural event is not only not part of history, it's philosophically untenable to defend aswell :). And I've already shown why, just check the links posted.

"First of all, this is another theological objection so you, again, are inconsistent."

Firstly it's not inconsistent to bring up theology or the Bible in a discussion where you claimed the "Resurrection of Jesus" was actual historical claim. Since it's not a historical claim, it's a THEISTIC claim. So you shouldn't have any problem's discussing theology.

In your second point, you merely assume (without any biblical justification), that these were not supernatural events. This just ignores all the details of the Hebrew words I mentioned. I'm not going over that again.

Derek Adams said...

Next you say "Third, even if they were supernatural that does not mean it would vindicate them because they do not have their source in God, who is infallible."

Firstly that's a claim you can't know. You don't know the source of the supernatural event, you certainly don't know which God is responsible. Second I don't care what the Bible describes as the "Source" of the miracle. I had already addressed this:

"You also still seem to assume you can suggest the origin of what is a miracle and what is just trickery. Of course you didn't apply the "best explanation" historical hypothesis to the Pharaohs, you only selectively cherry picked the Ressurection. So of course this is just theological bias and nothing to do with history."

Next you say: "Fourth, we know they didn't have their source in God because God himself was commanding Moses to go AGAINST the magicians."

Yet according to you God is all powerful and evil spirits need his permission to perform their darkarts. God actively commanding something but explicitly giving permission to the evil spirits clearly shows the spirits were working for God, fulfilling his will and purpose for them.

"Fifth, the magicians themselves realized that they could not match God in power."

How is this meant to address your strawman of my position? I guess you are still under the assumption I am a biblical inerrantist, well I won't beat a dead horse here.

You said: "finally, its irrelevant what the magicians did because even if they did perform supernatural events (albeit non-vindicated ones) it would contradict your worldview as a naturalist."

This depends on the best explanation for the origin of these alleged supernatural events. But this isn't required here, because the Exodus is entirely non-historical. (And when you follow up and say I haven't demonstrated this, I will merely repeat myself: You have still not answered my response to this).

With regard to the "facts", I never agreed with any of them. Nor do I believe all of them are historical. But again even granting you "5 facts", we have already pointed out naturalism already BY DEFAULT is a better explanation than Theism. I have GIVEN TWO SOLID REASONS for this in the two links I provided. 1) A ressurect ion is impossible to determine (I mention the reasons why) 2) A Resurrection does not correlate to anything we know about reality. Of course these are only two reasons, but the links I posted elaborate.

Next you said: "o Derek, you brought it up. You went to Exodus to bring up the magicians to make a theological point."

Wrong. I went to Exodus to point out supernatural activity is not limited to one religion even in your Bible. But neither the Bible or the book of the dead are taken to be theological realities and part of history sir. AGAIN you need to figure out how basic history works. "Supernatural events" are NOT explained by history. History cannot determine the nature of such events.

Derek Adams said...

You next says: "Well Derek, by that logic, then since you don't know everything about the universe then you can't deny it either."

That's correct we only say it contradicts KNOWN laws of physics, but we can't say there are no exceptions or unknown variables in nature. All we can argue is based on what we know, not on what we don't know. But you are arguing that GOD must have done it, based on theology, not history, based on something you take by faith, and that is not historical nor is it satisfying.

And now a closing word. Mkvine you just rewrote what you said in your prior two posts above and still haven't addressed your errors, or my objections and challenges. Repeatedly making the same blunders doesn't work. Repeatedly saying I haven't addressed something (when it's already posted above), and you still haven't answered, won't work. Repeatedly saying I am making theological claims (doesn't work). I've never appealed to ANY theology, nor do I believe supernatural events vindicate theology. That would be you, you fabricate entities, I point out the consequences, you say we must accept the entire exodus narrative as historical and theologically trustworthy, I say that is a non-sequitor, I am not an inerrantist, and I don't believe Exodus is historical, we don't even need to use that example for the point I AM making. I honestly don't believe you have any idea what inconsistency is. Try learning a simple consistency. IF EACH supernatural event VINDICATES that specific religion, THEN multiple world views are simultaneously true. But not only is that a historically and philosophically untenable claim to make. To claim you know the "origin" of any particular miraculous event, is itself a faith claim. Even if you could demonstrate Jesus said "I will be raised from the dead" and then show he ressurected from the dead, it would STILL be a faith claim to claim Jesus was raised by "God" and "vindicated". I can already think of several reasons why. Firstly a third day Resurrection was a more common belief than originally thought. Second Jesus claim that he would raise from the dead, may not have anything to do with who or what raised from the dead.

You however are not meant to be arguing theology, you are meant to argue HISTORY demonstrates the Resurrection. If you wish to go into philosophy, then you must show why theism is true, more specifically a theism that entails a Resurrection. You must ALSO demonstrate Jesus and his Apostles were VINDICATED. A Resurrection doesn't entail a vindication, nor do your previous statements match up with history. Craig hasn't demonstrated any supposed prophecy of any Resurrection in the OT or from Jesus and his apostles in the Gospels.

Since you can't get it into your head, that the exodus is only an authorized example for a Christian. I will point out two other examples: ELLEN G WHITE, JOSEPH SMITH. These are actual HISTORICAL REALITIES aswell, unlike the Exodus.

Now explain how both of them endured supernatural experiences. Doesn't this vindicate the belief systems they adhere to? The only way you can do that is to appeal to your own religion and say "it contradicts", but again we are not discussing THEOLOGY. We are discussing HISTORY. Do you understand that? What this means is you must point out science has no known explanation to explain White or Smith, and therefore we must appeal to Theism. But if you appeal to Theism, you open an entire can of worms. Since their is no need to assume your theistic world view at all.

Derek Adams said...

Well David still failed to answer the first question, showing this is a fatal objection, but he did make one kind of relevant comment:

"(I could also conclude, consistently with the evidence, that the late traditions were identical with the early traditions, and that Muslims always despised the cross, but that for several decades of the first century, Muslims used the image of the cross in order to deceive their enemies into believing that Islam is friendly towards Christianity--i.e. Taqiyya)."

That was the most wonderful, laughable explanation I've read in a while. Appreciate that. Of course you might want to know a little about the so called history of Islam in order to avoid those kind of errors. Muslims had no concern with using taqiya to seek false peace or compatibility with Christians through praising a cross. Try checking a few stories like, Mohammed's letters to all the Christian kings and the final marching orders given to fight and subjugate all People of the Book. Taqiya is not required when you can just conquer a country with your military might. But since David believes this is a possibility, why not show Abu Bakr, Umar or Uthman trying this on or advocating this. Atleast show the Muslims won the war through deception of a Islamic peace and compatibility.

The only other point worth considering was:"if the message of the coins was "Here comes Muhammad, and he comes with a cross to crucify all who stand in his way," this would fit perfectly with the Qur'an, with the evidence from the coins, and with Muslims not believing Jesus was crucified."

The latter half still makes no coherent sense. With the first half "the praised one" with a "cross", doesn't seem like the message that David is conjuring up. Pretty much the "Don't mess with me message". Yet an image of Muhammad himself is ON THE COIN, again demonstrating the coin is contradicting what we would expect given an Islamic Mohammed who despised the cross and prohibited pictures and imagery. Furthermore if this coin was of the "threatening" type we have other documented examples of those, this does not fit. Finally we need to look a little broader to understand the "significance" of the cross:

Derek Adams said...

THE HIDDEN ORIGIN OF ISLAM, edited by Karl-Heinz Ohlig and Gerd-R Puin

One of the interesting parts of the book, is where the authors evaluate records dating close to the beginning of Islam. One of these interesting records is found in the inscriptions on coins which were minted by various rulers who were contemporaries of early Islam. The coins have a direct message, since they commonly contain religious statements and symbols. One of the primary methods, the rulers used to prove their legitimacy, was that they were the leaders and protectors the national religion. We know this is more than hypothetical, since rulers in the Middle East still acquire legitimacy from their religious affiliation. For example, the Saudi royal house still gains legitimacy through their support for the Muslim holy places. Since everyone used money, these religious coins were an important method to assert the rulers’, God given, authority. For instance, if a coin includes a cross, that is a sign that the ruler has authority as a Christian. If archaeologists can date a coin, and if they can discover who minted the coin, they can, thereby, ascertain which religion was in ascendancy. They have found coins which are stamped with crosses indicating that the ruler is a Christian, and are also stamped with the word Muhammad. In other words, Muhammad, was a term Christian rulers were using, on their coins, to assert their authority. These coins testify against the traditional Muslim history of Islam.

David it is therefore completely impossible to claim the Muslims were so ignorant, they didn't know coins that had crosses were a symbol of Christianity or a Christian ruler and empire.

Hence your only possible explanation left is the "taqiya" which is stretching it considering what I mentioned.

BTW How do you know "taqiya" explanation of 3:28 given by Kathir is apart of the message of the original Mohammed?

David Wood said...

DK said: "That was the most wonderful, laughable explanation I've read in a while. Appreciate that. Of course you might want to know a little about the so called history of Islam in order to avoid those kind of errors. Muslims had no concern with using taqiya to seek false peace or compatibility with Christians through praising a cross. Try checking a few stories like, Mohammed's letters to all the Christian kings and the final marching orders given to fight and subjugate all People of the Book. Taqiya is not required when you can just conquer a country with your military might. But since David believes this is a possibility, why not show Abu Bakr, Umar or Uthman trying this on or advocating this. Atleast show the Muslims won the war through deception of a Islamic peace and compatibility."

So many blunders, so little time! Here are a few of the more obvious:

(1) The Qur'an and the early Muslim sources are filled with positive comments about Christians and Jews, which Muslims used (and still use) to show that Islam is not hostile towards Christianity. So if Muslims have been using feigned compatibility with Christianity in their dawah efforts all along, how can you confidently say that they most certainly wouldn't have done this with coins?

(2) You're the one who needs to study history. According to the standard view, Muslims during this time were trying to lure Christians to Islamic rule. Many Christians were dissatisfied with Roman rule, so Muslims (apart from conquering) were trying to convince them that life would be better under Islam. A cross on coins would help Muslims show that there are no ill feelings towards Christians. Hence, history doesn't help you here.

(3) Even if you were correct (which, as usual, you weren't) that Muhammad, Abu Bakr, etc., did not appeal to Christians by feigning compatibility with Christian doctrine, what in the name of common sense does this have to do with later Muslim leaders (i.e. the ones minting coins)? In order to show that no Muslim leader would ever put a cross on a coin, you would have to show that all Muslim leaders adhered wholeheartedly to the standards laid down by Muhammad and his companions. And I'm not aware of anyone, Muslim or non-Muslim, who believes this (except you).

David Wood said...

DK said: "The latter half still makes no coherent sense. With the first half "the praised one" with a "cross", doesn't seem like the message that David is conjuring up. Pretty much the "Don't mess with me message". Yet an image of Muhammad himself is ON THE COIN, again demonstrating the coin is contradicting what we would expect given an Islamic Mohammed who despised the cross and prohibited pictures and imagery. Furthermore if this coin was of the "threatening" type we have other documented examples of those, this does not fit."

You are literally clueless. Muhammad was called the "prophet of the sword." He said he was coming to fight anyone who refuses to declare that Allah is the only God. The Qur'an's final marching orders are for Muslims to violently subjugate non-Muslims. One of the punishments for those who oppose Islamic rule is crucifixion. And yet you declare, with complete confidence, that no Muslim would send a warning through the symbol of a cross (crucifixion) on a coin. Your arrogance is truly boundless.

And here you run into an inescapable dilemma. In order to reject my arguments based on the Principle of Embarrassment, you have to agree with Robert that we can't know what motivated the early Muslims, or what they were thinking, or what they might find embarrassing, and therefore that we can't apply the Principle of Embarrassment. But if you grant that we can't know what motivated the early Muslims, or what they were thinking, or what they might find embarrassing, you can't rule out ANY explanation for why a Muslim leader might put a cross on a coin. In other words, you can't have it both ways. If the early Muslims are subject to our assessment of their reasons (which you're claiming now), then we can apply the Principle of Embarrassment, and Muhammad existed. But if the early Muslims are not subject to our assessment of their reasons (which Robert ended up claiming), then all your objections to my explanations for the appearance of a cross on coins are moot.

David Wood said...

DK said: "BTW How do you know "taqiya" explanation of 3:28 given by Kathir is apart of the message of the original Mohammed?"

I don't have to know it. It simply has to be one possible explanation for the data we have, which is exactly how I used it. If you're claiming that it isn't a possible (and reasonable) explanation for the data under consideration, I'd love to hear your argument. In the meantime, the arguments you've given so far are dreadful.

David Wood said...

So here's where we are. In order to show that the presence of a cross alongside Muhammad on a coin minted by certain Muslim leaders is some kind of proof that Muhammad didn't exist, DK will need to show:

(1) That adding the cross to these coins couldn't have been part of an effort to lure disgruntled Christians to Islamic rule;

(2) That the symbol of the cross on these coins specifically referred to Christianity, and not to the Islamic penalty of crucifixion;

(3) That the Islamic abhorrence of the cross in late Islamic tradition was actually part of early Islamic tradition;

(4) That Muslim leaders of the period always adhered to early Islamic tradition; and

(5) That if Muhammad appeared alongside a cross on a coin minted by Muslim leaders, Muhammad never existed.

Feel free to defend these points in turn, DK. As of the moment, you haven't successfully defended any of them.

Derek Adams said...

David all of your pitiful explanations still fail when we put the facts together as a collection. None of your fanciful possibilities work. Lets cover those facts again:

1) "The Praised One" is a generic title that could apply to any human being of note worthy status

2) The image and cross on the coin contradict the known conception of the "Islamic Mohammed", making it even more likely this Mohammed is not an Islamic Mohammed figure. We are already removing his features and attributes. An Islamic Mohammed who BELIEVED Jesus died? An Islamic Mohammed who BELIEVED pictures of him were fine? Thanks for stripping him further. Oh and it's no use claiming he was using the cross as a instrument of warning or "don't mess with me", since:

3)The coin was not of the "threatening" type we have other documented examples of those of which the image of Mohammed does not square with. Your claim that Mohammed was the "prophet of the sword" is great, since it backfires because we know there is a coin with a caliph holding a sword in a defiant manner, which is exactly what we would expect, a SWORD, NOT a cross. If Mohammed was the prophet of the sword, we would after all expect A SWORD, hopefully you can cope with that reasoning David. Also the Caliph had a "defiant pose", not a powerful strident leader strut. Hence the coin was not a threat or a warning.

4) It is impossible to claim the Muslims were so ignorant, they didn't know coins that had crosses were a symbol of Christianity or a Christian ruler and empire.

5)There is no historical evidence to suggest Muslims were using taqiya. There is no evidence if they were using taqiya they the symbol of the cross was apart of this taqiya.

We are now therefore at the point where you are clinging on to the taqiya explanation, after all you couldn't address the fact that your nonsense explanation about the "cross" being a warning, was just that utter nonsense that contradicts the above four facts.

So lets look at your defense of the taqiya explanation:

You asked: "how can you confidently say that they most certainly wouldn't have done this with coins?"

False analogy. None of the "pseudo compatibilities" in the Quran have anything to do with the cross. As for the Quran sanctioning or possibly giving rise to a similar idea by future Muslim leaders, you would need to show evidence of that being a possibility. In other words, which of these Muslim leaders believed the Quran had a two-faced message toward the Christians? Or this idea was apart of their faith itself. And how did this theme transfer to duplicating crosses on coins? considering this still contradicts all four facts.

Your next defense of the taqiya explanation was: "Many Christians were dissatisfied with Roman rule, so Muslims (apart from conquering) were trying to convince them that life would be better under Islam."

Yet this is simply a non-sequitor. The luring of Muslims had nothing to do with Muslims preaching a distorted or christianized compatible version of Islam, which they flipped over when they conquered. The lure was that Christians could have limited amount of rights under Muslim rule. Better than the living situation they currently had. The lure was they would not be killed and be made to live like slaves. If you want to say it's "possible" that Muslims used deception of a cross icon, well anything is possible, it's possible they DID NOT use this as a deception. You need to address where the evidence leads, and so far you have not shown the message of taqiya was part of the message of the original Mohammed or of these later Muslim leaders.

Finally lets address what you think I must show.

"(3) That the Islamic abhorrence of the cross in late Islamic tradition was actually part of early Islamic tradition;"

Derek Adams said...

It's a possibility it was, therefore you must show it was not. Yet this is one of the prime objections you still haven't dealt with. Since Imam Muslim wasn't fabricating narrations out of a vacuum, he compiled thousands of hadith and approved of thousands less. Clearly each and every narration pre-dates this "late tradition". There is simply no way round this.

"(5) That if Muhammad appeared alongside a cross on a coin minted by Muslim leaders, Muhammad never existed."

The reason I don't believe the Islamic Mohammed existed, is because many times in history absence of evidence is evidence of absence.

With regard to the coin, all I'm saying is, if someone believes a Islamic Mohammed had existed, this coin looks incompatible with this. The explanations you have come up with are not satisfactory, when the weight of actual evidence is on the other side, not merely "possibility".

Derek Adams
www.AnsweringAbraham.com

mkvine said...

Derek,

You keep digging your hole deeper and deeper. You said "The 'authenticity' of these replications are not magic tricks, but divine interventions" First, I think you are confusing supernatural events with *divine* supernatural events. Of course, demons can do supernatural events, that doesn't mean they are divine events. Furthermore, where does it say that they were *divine* interventions? It doesn't say that. How could they be *divine* interventions if the purpose of the magicians was to have a contest with Moses who received intervention from God himself? If for the sake of argument these were *divine* interventions, that would do nothing for your argument. You already claimed that Moses and Exodus were non-historical. So following your own logic, why would you use a non-historical source, in which you make a *theological* claim about magicians, to discount the *historical* facts surrounding the resurrection? This would make your objection irrelevant since a non-historical source (per your claim) cannot have any bearing on the established historical facts of the resurrection. Not only is that a category fallacy, but also a non-sequitor to the nth degree.

Next you claimed to have answered me with this "Now if you accuse them of being inauthentic (of which you have no evidence), we then can apply the same explanations you use to reject the authenticity of the Egyptian miracles, to your own scriptures." No, Derek, you are comparing apples and oranges here. Whether the magic of the egyptians was authentic or not is a theological question. This presupposes that magic is real, it presupposes that supernatural things can occur, it presupposes that spirits exist, etc. This is entirely different from assessing the facts concerning the Ressurection, like did Jesus really die, was the tomb empty, did his followers experience post-mortem appearances, etc. So in order to "apply the same explanations" to Jesus, you would have to criticize Jesus from a historical perspective, not a theological one. It's quite baffling that a naturalist like yourself keeps wanting to go to theology to prove their point. Amazing.

As for evil spirits being discredited, like I said before this would not do anything for you, since you don't believe in evil spirits. The reason you are bringing this up is because you are trying to say, well maybe God wasn't responsible for Jesus' resurrection, maybe it was the evil spirits who raised him. Lets say for the sake of argument that all the historical evidence pointed to evil spirits as the best possible explanation. Now, how would that prove your point exactly? Yeah, I'm scratching my head too. How a naturalist can even hold to such a conclusion is, frankly, beyond me. Maybe you are not a naturalist after all. Be that as it may, in Exodus 22 when God lists commandments of what to follow and what not to follow, he explicitly mentions sorcery, "You shall not permit a sorceress to live" (v.14). Furthermore, Deuteronomy 18:10-12 states "There shall not be found among you [anyone] who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, [or one] who practices witchcraft, [or] a soothsayer, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer or one who conjures spells, or a medium, or a spiritist, or one who calls up the dead.For all who do these things [are] an abomination to the LORD, and because of these abominations the LORD your God drives them out from before you." I think that is self explanatory.

mkvine said...

continued.


You said "Miracle Event X occurs, therefore it was Yahweh. Does not follow. Claiming to know the "origin" of any supernatural event is not only not part of history, it's philosophically untenable to defend aswell :). And I've already shown why, just check the links posted." You are confusing the issues again. The question about the origin of miracles was only in response to your claim about the magicians. In that case, we wanted to see whether those "miracles" were valid or not. In order to assess that, we needed to figure out the origin of them. That is a wholly separate issue from the issue about Jesus, which is assessing historical information, not about the origins of miracles. Another category fallacy.

You said "Firstly it's not inconsistent to bring up theology or the Bible in a discussion where you claimed the "Resurrection of Jesus" was actual historical claim. Since it's not a historical claim, it's a THEISTIC claim. So you shouldn't have any problem's discussing theology." Actually, you are being inconsistent. You keep wanting us to stay away from theology, but now you say its perfectly valid to bring it up. So which is it? As for having a problem with theology, I already responded to your claims, you just don't like it when I do and suddenly shift to history. Not very honest of you.

Your next two points, you make a big fuss about not knowing the source of something supernatural, which you then say you don't care. If you don't care then why did you bring it up :) ? Also, the very fact that you are trying to figure out the origin of something supernatural presupposes that supernaturalism is real. Again, I am scratching my head. Your only point here was, well we don't know which god did it. Well, I can link you to a couple of articles which make the philosophical point that there is only one God, so therefore, the question would not be, which god did it, but rather, who's side was God on? As we clearly see from the text you appealed to, the magicians were outdone by Moses and could no longer match him or save themselves. Clearly, God was with Moses, not the magicians.

"Yet according to you God is all powerful and evil spirits need his permission to perform their darkarts. God actively commanding something but explicitly giving permission to the evil spirits clearly shows the spirits were working for God, fulfilling his will and purpose for them."

I can hardly make sense of this objection. Yeah, God gave the spirits permission to perform dark-arts (assuming there was no trickery involved). Just like he gives us permission to sin or go to church or buy a car or eat a cheeseburger etc. Just because God gives us permission doesn't mean that he is commanding us to do it. If anything, God exposed the evil spirits by demonstrating that they cannot match God in power and cannot even save the egyptian people. Showing that God is all powerful and if you try to go against Him, you will always fail. (By the way, this is another theological point on your part, I thought you wanted only history).

"How is this meant to address your strawman of my position? I guess you are still under the assumption I am a biblical inerrantist, well I won't beat a dead horse here."

Derek, you are the one that claimed the magicians held supernatural powers, and therefore they are vindicated. Remember, you don't believe any of this is historical, so you're simply going by what the text says at this point. Now, if you are going to appeal to Exodus to prove that their supernatural powers vindicated them, then you need to show that from the text. But we know from the text that the magicians were not vindicated. This leaves you with two problems: 1). The text goes against you because they were not vindicated 2). By your own criteria of historicity you are not vindicated because you don't believe this happened. Therefore, both your theological and your historical objections fail.

mkvine said...

(continued)

Derek, you are the one that claimed the magicians held supernatural powers, and therefore they are vindicated. Remember, you don't believe any of this is historical, so you're simply going by what the text says at this point. Now, if you are going to appeal to Exodus to prove that their supernatural powers vindicated them, then you need to show that from the text. But we know from the text that the magicians were not vindicated. This leaves you with two problems: 1). The text goes against you because they were not vindicated 2). By your own criteria of historicity you are not vindicated because you don't believe this happened. Therefore, both your theological and your historical objections fail.

You said: "And when you follow up and say I haven't demonstrated this, I will merely repeat myself: You have still not answered my response to this)."

Well, up to this point, you haven't given us the "best explanation" for the facts surrounding Jesus' resurrection. As to Exodus being non-historical, if for the sake of argument we say that its not historical, the question would be, why are you appealing to a non-historical work in order to assess the historicity surrounding the Resurrection? That makes absolutely no sense. Going by your own logic, that would be like me going to Harry Potter to disprove King Henry.

Next you give reasons for why the Resurrection is not historical. Finally, now we're getting somewhere, after all this time ;) At best, those reasons you gave just leave you at agnosticism, they don't actually deny the resurrection. However, agnosticism doesn't always work especially if the evidence demands a verdict. It's almost like saying, you come to your house, your window is broken, your stereo and television is gone, all your jewelry is gone, etc., all the evidence is screaming burglary, but you say I don't know what happened. This would be ridiculous. The way history works is you gather all available evidence, from that evidence, historians make inferences and deductions as to what happened. Now, sometimes we are confronted with things like the Resurrection, in which based upon the evidence our inferences and deductions would point us to a supernatural event. But for the naturalist, even if the evidence points to the Resurrection, he would not accept it because his worldview says that nature is all there is. However, in order for you to deny the resurrection if face of all the evidence for it, you would need to give us good reasons for thinking that naturalism is true. Because at this point, you are not going where the evidence leads you, instead you are going where your philosophical framework leads you. But if you do see problems with the evidence, then you need to demonstrate which facts that Dr. Craig outlines you disagree with.

So in conclusion, the entirety of your arguments rested solely upon one theological contention:

1). Supernatural events cannot vindicate claims because magicians could do them too.

My response was basically, a naturalist cannot say supernatural events don't vindicate claims because there is no way to assert that on naturalism. The only way he can even attempt to answer this question is by going to the Theist's own book to show him whether this argument is true or not. But this is problematic because by trying to prove this claim, he would contradict his own worldview. If he's merely trying to show the Theist the consistency of the argument from his own book, then the naturalist fails on that too because the same book discredits the supernaturalism of magicians but vindicates the supernaturalism of God. If the naturalist rejects that explanation, then he needs to go outside of the theist's book, and invent his own theology as to why the magician's supernaturalism is vindicated. But going outside the book and inventing ones own theology to prove ones point is pure conjecture.

God Bless.

David Wood said...

DK,

Is this what you do? I feel like you're just messing with us to waste our time. I can't take your objections seriously. There's no way you can be this silly.

You say I should assume that the late Islamic tradition about the cross is actually early. But if I assume that this tradition is early, then I must assume it goes back to Muhammad. If I assume it goes back to Muhammad, then I must assume Muhammad existed. So you're telling me I have to assume Muhammad existed in our discussion of whether Muhammad existed. Fine, I'll assume that Muhammad existed. You lose! And nothing you say can change my mind, because you've demanded I assume Muhammad's existence. Pretty bold strategy on your part! What's next? Are you going to demand that your opponents assume the existence of God in debates on the existence of God? Brilliant!

Now for the alternative. Why do I sometimes believe that later Muslims fabricated stories? Often, but not always, I conclude that Muslims fabricated stories because these stories contradict earlier data. Hence, I conclude that miracle stories about Muhammad were all fabricated, since the earliest source repeatedly affirms that Muhammad performed no miracles.

Following this same reasoning, do the stories of Islamic outrage at the symbol of the cross conflict with any earlier data? According to you, yes. These late stories conflict with the earlier data of Muhammad appearing on a coin alongside a cross. Hence, if I take your view seriously, I have to conclude that the late stories of Islamic outrage at the cross were fabricated. But if these stories were late fabrications, Muhammad appearing on the coins is no problem for my view, since the coins were minted before the false stories arose.

Now look at the conundrum you're in. If the late Islamic material goes back to early Islam, then Muhammad existed (and you're wrong). But if the late Islamic material doesn't go back to early Islam, it can't count as evidence against my beliefs about Muhammad, because the conflict wouldn't have existed at the time the coins were minted (in which case, you're again wrong). Either way, the coins don't count against Muhammad's existence, so either way, you're wrong.

But you must be used to it by now.

Now here's what's most amazing. What do you believe about Islamic attitudes towards the cross? You believe they arose sometime after the coins were minted, and that these attitudes were falsely written back into Islamic history. But when I say the exact same thing, you call me a "retard," you make fun of my claims, you say that all of my points are absurd, etc.

How utterly blind can you possibly be? You believe a much, much stronger (and more complicated) version of the view you're condemning me for presenting. I suggest that Muslims invented a tradition, and you mock me. Yet you believe that Muslims invented not only this tradition, but thousands of others as well! And here we go again. If it's silly of me to argue that Muslims invented this tradition, then it's much, much sillier of you for arguing that Muslims invented virtually all of their traditions!

Are you starting to see why I can't take you seriously, and why I'm starting to think that you get off on deliberately wasting people's time?

Curious said...

First of all a message to DEREK ADAMS: you do not own this blog, stop hijacking the space!
Second, David kicks butt during every single debate. I could not help but notice opening and closing of doors in the room while David was speaking. Clearly David's presentation of facts ruffles feathers of uneducated Muslims in the room. Good job David.

Richard said...

@Derak Adams "..I am familiar with the evidence. But that is all addressed in his book..."

Addressed? Evidence doesn't disappear if you address it. All you do is provide alternate explanations for it."

"David has not even contested the dubious nature of these references providing "positive evidence" for Mohammed either." Maybe not, maybe he should have. How is that relevant. Neither have you referred to them.

Including one that refers to Muhammad by name during the Arab conquests of Palestine "In January {the people of} Hims took the word for their lives and many villages were ravaged by the killing of {the Arabs of} Muhammad (Muhmd) and many people were slain and {taken} prisoner from Galilee as far as Beth. . . ."

But the main reason I believe that the Islamic Mohammed existed is not on the "dubious" positive evidence, but because of David's very convincing argument that it would be simply incredible to manufacture such a flawed character bit by bit. If they were to manufacture a prophet out of thin air they would've done a better job of it.

Derek Adams "The reason I don't believe the Islamic Mohammed existed, is because many times in history absence of evidence is evidence of absence." What?? Just think about what you have said.

You cannot draw any conclusion from absence of evidence yet you say this is "evidence" of absence!

Maybe David Wood is more constrained in what he says, but this shows you are an idiot.

AD said...

1. For me the MOOOST disturbing aspect of Islam is tht - they r allowed to keep the women captured in a battle.

I see ppl in YouTube saying the same thing even now - tht they will attack our countries & keep our women. Absolutely sickening...

There are several examples where Muhammad has done this himself of allowed it for his men. Sometimes he advocated raping these women in front of their husbands.

------------
Quote from http://www.thereligionofpeace.com/Muhammad/myths-mu-rape.htm

Some of the Companions of the Apostle of Allah (may peace be upon him) were reluctant to have intercourse with the female captives in the presence of their husbands who were unbelievers. So Allah, the Exalted, sent down the Qur’anic verse: (Sura 4:24) "And all married women (are forbidden) unto you save those (captives) whom your right hands possess." (Abu Dawud 2150, also Muslim 3433)

Actually, as the hadith indicates, it wasn't Muhammad, but "Allah the Exalted" who told the men to rape the women in front of their husbands - which is all the more reason not to think of Islam as being the same as other religion.
------------

This is just so EVIL & inhuman - it blows my mind. Why didn't u bring tht up in your debate? (I am disappointed in you for not bringing this up too).


2. Why did u not mention the several instances of inhuman tortures & mercilessness shown by humahham - the old woman being ordered to be toren apart by two camels etc.


Overall great rebuttals to Zaatari's answers.

3. Also the fact tht 'muslims were tolerant of other religions & good to jews & other religions' is laughable. Take ANY part of the world where muslims ruled, read their history & you'll know how extremely inhuman & intolerant they were.

I am from India - and here they demolished 3000 temples. Some as significant to the hindus as the mecca is to the muslims (like the temple at the birthplace of Lord Ram - where Babri masjid was built). They tortured & killed ppl for conversions - eyes of hindu rulers were gouged out with hot rods of irons. Young sikh prince 8 & 10 year old were burried alive in a wall (when they did not accept Islam). Hundreds of stories of hindu saints being harassed, tortured, jailed & killed. Our holy literature burnt & banned. It was barbaric and inhuman.

You can witness the same thing in any place the muslims went to in history. Or where there are muslims even today. Churches being burnt, forced conversions, kidnap & rape of girls, ethnic cleansing through systematic kidnaps & murders.

In Pakistan: population of hindus & other minorities during separation was 10%. Today it has come down to 1%. (We are talking abt millions of ppl here) While in India, populations of muslims has increased from 10% to 17% during the same period.

Have seen stories from Pakistan & Saudi Arabia - where hindu girls and women are kidnapped & raped and forced to marry muslim men. Even in big cities like Lahore etc and women from very good, respectable families are victims of this. Police does not even register their complaints.

Can send links (from Pakistani news channels) if u need them. A video from Saudi Arabia - where a girl is kidnapped & stripped. Its just so inhuman - it blows my mind. I loose my apetite & get really depressed after I see such stuff.

Bfoali said...

David,

Is what Curious said true? Were people leaving the debate out of the discomfort they felt by the topics you raised?

AD said...

Also David, am sure you know this - but for a muslim, Quaran isn't the only source of 'influence'. They read other books, interpretations, seminars, discussions, education in their madarsaa etc.

And Quaran although full of violence, hate, torture, rapes & slavery - still sometimes does not describe things as openly & clearly as the other books do.

This leaves room for the argument 'Oh, it means something else in context. You need to look at it in context...'

So you must then go to other imp religious texts - and quote from them while making your points to leave no room for doubt. The Shariya law which interprets the Quaran and helps people apply the teaching of Quaran in daily life for example - will often make things 100% clear.

On jihad for example: Quaran might just say 'kill the non-believers wherever you find them', but I hv seen videos where terrorists, preachers & islamic scholars give a much more detailed account of what you can do, where and how you can do jihad, what qualifies as jihad, how you can treat the non-muslims in your land.

(1. One horrible thing I once heard in a video, where a terrorist was saying: In a muslim land a non-muslim is like a cow. You can pick one up and buy or sell him in the market. or you can kill him if you want to. Its all there in the book of jihad.

2. At other places I have heard things like: Jihad is the MOST imp duty of a muslim

3. If one does jihad for the time it takes between two milkings of a camel, he will go to heaven

4. If Allah could make one more duty cumpulsory for muslims, it would be 'jihad'

5. The heaven tht one goes to after doin jihd is 100 grades higher. And the distance between each grade is 300 years

6. "You say you don't like fighting. But you must do tht which you do not like, because it may be good for you"

7. Paradise is under the shade of swords

etc etc... There are millions of these. So it makes me mad when the muslim debaters still get away by saying: tht's not what islam teaches & tht u need to look at it in context)

So clearly there are other books which define this in detail. When you supplement your arguments with these references from other sources as well - it will leave no room for argument at all.

I would love for you to research these other sources and use their references in your arguments as well.

Would also like you to do more videos on them: exposing the various shocking evils of Islam in detail (vids like Quaran in Context). Yes! I believe I have not had enough from you yet.

There needs to be a source that lists all these violent verses, texts etc (not just from the Quaran but from other places as well, in detail). There are thousands videos of scholars, mullas etc teaching & preaching such shocking things every day. Those need to be exposed and linked to as well. Finally the news items - where we see LIVE effects from the teaching if Islam. Maybe even insider news & stories tht do not get reported in mainstream media (from common ppl and what they see around them). Lastly, rebuttal to every argument of theirs (FAQ) - even stuff like: they hate west because of Iraq war, Afganistan, 9/11 was a jewish conspiracy etc etc. They need to be shown that it was not us, but them who started it (like your example of Muhammad attacking jewish caravans 8 times, and then when they retaliated, screaming tht 'They r against allah, and they attack us cause we r muslims')