Shabir Ally is leading the "Who Should We Respond to Next?" poll, so we're going to dedicate at least 3-4 upcoming episodes of "Jesus or Muhammad?" to our friend Shabir. Next week on ABN, Sam and I will be joining Robert Spencer and Pastor Joseph for a few special programs, but after that we'll respond to Shabir.
So here's the next question. Which of Shabir's claims would you like to see refuted? You can post links to video clips of Shabir's claims here, and we'll get to as many of them as we can.
In the following clip, Shabir Ally posits that Jesus may have survived the crucifixion and that the centurion who was to verify that He was dead was actually a Christian, who wanted to keep Jesus alive, and further suggests that He may have escaped the tomb on Friday evening before the guards were placed at the tomb.:
i think ally was at his best a few yrs ago when he critiqued craig's case for the resurrection--which is similar to habermas and licona.
the following clip is his entire debate with craig; ally's response to craig's case begins around 21:14.
i think that a point-by-point rejoinder to this critique would be valuable, since ally's is, in my view, the best response to the case for the resurrection from a muslim point of view!
In the debate between Shabir Ally and James White (link http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R15NElGhXSA), Shabir uses the argument that Matthew and Luke' Gospel which borrowed heavily from Mark's Gospel show developments in the how the early Church thought about Jesus. For example, Mark refers to Jesus as the Messiah whereas Matthew refers to Jesus as the Messiah, Son of the Living God. Shabir shows that this happens not once but several times. How do Christians respond to this?
Christians have long recognized that the synoptic gospels are partly based on each other or on the same sources. The famous church father Augustine already proposed the Augustinian hypothesis to account for this, which assumes that Mark used Matthew and Luke used both Mark and Matthew. There are different theories, but the view that Matthew and Luke just copied Mark and expanded on it is far too simplistic. They had their independent sources as well.
In the example you give it might seem at first that Matthew just added "Son of the living God" to Mark's version, but that ignores the fact that the apostle John, who writes independent of the synoptics, also uses "the Messiah, the Son of the living God" in John 6:69. Both John and Matthew were eyewitnesses to this saying of Jesus, so the most logical explanation is that they Matthew simply remembered something that Mark left out.
This is for Joseph and everybody else. I recommend you one web page which i found recently. I think there you can find detailed answer about this and similar doubts.
I can't locate the clip right now but I've heard Shabir Ally arguing for "mathematical miracles" in the Quran. That might be worth refuting if you can locate the video/audio.
Osama and any other muslims reading this: what videos do you consider to be irrefutable? Come on, I dare you - take that massive step.
Here is a link to Shabir talking about why he is still a Muslim and some of the so called 'Mathematical miracles in the Quran'.
I so look forward to to your video's on Shabir Ally, as I think he is the best Muslim debater out there at the moment!
I watched the whole series of four debates with Dr. Craig and the two on the Resurrection and the Jesus of Bible vs Qur'an are those in which he did the most poorly.
To focus on the one on the Resurrection, he defended, as well as few days after, the swoon theory. Dr. Craig replied to him in the last debate about the historical Jesus that this was the hypothesis of desperation and that even secular scholars critical of Christianity don't dare using this theory.
In any case, the Muslim position is quite tricky when it comes to the resurrection. A secular scholar can take the freedom to claim that the disciples where deceivers (though he has to explain why they were ready to die for their deception!), but a Muslim can't. Muslim cannot also easily claim that the disciples had hallucinations of Jesus alive (however, Shabir claimed that Jesus appeared to them alive even if He was not crucified just to show them that He was still alive ad had survived the Resurrection). Muslims are then left without the two main anti-resurrection theories and are forced to make claims absolutely contradicting historical fact. Shabir is very happy to claim to Christians that we do not have proofs for many of their assertions on Jesus, but does not have ANY problem to accept the non-crufixion for which there is absolutely no proof and is even contradicting whatever proof we have.
Actually, the debate on the Resurrection soon turned to a debate about wether Jesus was crucified, and I guess one has to focus on related arguments from the Muslim side. However, Shabir's argumentation was so poor that I don't think it is quite useful to spend time on that after refuting Naik on the same topic. I was laughing all the time while watching this: actually Jesus was not dead, but Pilate wanted to save him according to the Gospels so he had him removed from the cross... Those arguments are pure fantasy! Anyone can invent something like this and prove anything.
Dr. Craig, however, used an historical strategy and did not assume the inerrancy of the Bible as a basis of his argumentation. However, Shabir's main argument concerned the alleged contradictions in the resurrection accounts and did not answer the arguments directly. He did much worse in the Jesus debate in which he did not even dare counter Dr. Craig's historical analysis. He was trying to escape all the tine and Bill reminded him several times that he could not simply do so. I guess he didn't have the choice. Whereas we Christians have proofs that enable us to defend our claims about Jesus, especially his death on the cross and his resurrection, Muslims are left without a SINGLE proof of their claims and their only way out is to invent. And when you see that they can see Muhammad in John 14 to 16, you can imagine what they are up to!!!
Other week replies and inconsistencies:
- Dr. Craig noted that no one at that time would rely on the testimony of women, as is the case in the resurrection accounts, which makes it historically reliable. The best reply that Shabir had is that: Maybe they went to the wrong tomb!!!
I burst out in laughter by hearing this! This just shows how week Muslims can be when it comes to historical facts about Jesus.
- Shabir insisted that e can't believe in the resurrection because of so-called contradictions. However, Muslims don't have ANY problem to believe in the virgin birth even if similar claims are made on those accounts. This just shows that almost any of their argument on Jesus actually simply hides the only "proof" Muslims have:
the Qur'an says so it must be so! (Dr. Badawi even admitted it in debate vs. Dr Craig: the Qur'an is the word of God so even if 99% of scholars claim that Jesus was crucified we don't care; which I would translate as: that's it, don't have to care about facts, just believe what the Qur'an)
- Shabir claims that Allah wanted to have Jesus suffer to show us a good example, but here the Muslim Jesus would look more like a coward than anything else! Martyrdom is so important in Islam, but somehow Jesus couldn't make it and had to be saved.
- Anyway, there are many passages in the Qur'an about prophets being martyred, so why did it have to be different with Jesus?
- Allah wanted to spare him a shameful death, but according to the swoon theory, Jesus was scourged and nailed almost naked on the cross, so saving him after he was ashamed in such a way doesn't do anything.
- Anyway, Shabir's claim are quasi-Islamic, to use Dr. Craig's words. The Qur'an is clear that Jesus was NOT crucified. I asked an Arab Muslim friend about the verse and he confirmed me the meaning.
- The same friend confirmed me that in 'so it was made to appear unto them' the agent is Allah. So Allah is responsible for having us all, whether christian or non-christian, to believe in the Resurrection. Dr Craig pointed out that this would made Allah a deceiver, but Shabir said no without argumenting further on it (or almost not as far as I can remember, in any case his reply for not at all convincing)
@Haecceitas and kiwimac
my view is that the best way to counter the claim about "mathematical miracles" in the Qur'an is to provide counter-examples in the Bible. And there are a plethora of claims for the Bible (numerology, Bible code...).
I have been investigating those claims for almost two years now and find that not only you have similar claims, but also that the biblical ones are far beyond the ones about the Qur'an.
If anyone needs more information on that, feel free to email me (firstname.lastname@example.org). I have spent hours checking claims and estimating probabilities. I have written and am still writing articles on that.
I think this is paramount since many are getting deceived by those "miracle" claims. The main reason is as we Christians do not need such claims to show that Christianity is true (and generally don't use them), Muslims have no sound historical and theological arguments so they have to rely on alleged quranic miracle. Try to argue history with a Muslim and you will see that he will soon switch the topic to miracles. Since they're using this all the time, one tends to think that one can't make such claims on the Bible, so the Qur'an is true. This is however far from being the truth. It goes the same for scientific predictions. I was thinking the same before I came across websites about scientific predictions in the Bible that are very similar to the quranic ones. I looked at those passages and find them even more convincing.
In any case, feel free to email me about such numerical claims in the Bible. Just to quote a friend of mine, a former Qur'an only Muslim versed in Khalifa's "research":
"only two versed of the Bible are upsetting the whole Qur'an".
If Muslims want to use this strategy, we Christians should be able to fire back!
Here are my answers to most of Shabir Ally's arguments:
"Why Shabir Ally’s Arguments about Jesus not Dying are rejected by Atheist Scholars"
"More on Why Atheistic Scholars reject Shabir Ally’s Arguments Against Jesus’ Death"
"Why David Strauss,Skeptical German NT Scholar,would Reject Shabir Ally’s Theory that Jesus Swooned on the Cross"
The following are in French,which you can translate using Google Translate:
"La Preuve contre l’Argument de Shabir Ally que Jesus n’est pas Mort apres Seulement Six Heures sur la Croix"
"La Reponse a autre Argument,par les Musulmans Gulam et Shabir Ally,contre la Resurrection"
"Une Reponse a un Argument du Musulman Shabir Ally contre l’Evangile de Jean"
"Contre l’Argument de Shabir Ally qu’il y a un Development Legendaire de Jesus dans les Evangiles"
"Sur les Gnostiques et sur un Argument de Shabir Ally contre la Divinite de Jesus"
"Contre autre Argument de Shabir Ally:Jesus et les Emotions dans Luc"
Shabir Ally on the logic and justice of atonement: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B4kKoV_uDts
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y96KuhAQBMI this one seems to focus on the "mathematical miracles" of the Quran.
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