Friday, November 7, 2014

William Lane Craig: How the Muslim Concept of God Fails

Here's William Lane Craig answering a Muslim questioner on the Christian concept of God.

51 comments:

Truth Defenders said...

Lane Craig fails to realize that it is not about the "kind" of God we would or would not follow/believe in that exists. To make himself and his own standards the criteria for God's existence is idolatry, he will only follow a god in his own image.
How would Craig reconcile his universally loving god with the following verses?

Psalm 5:5, “…Thou dost hate all who do iniquity,"
Psalm 11:5, “…the one who loves violence His soul hates."
Psalm 31:5-6 "...You hate those who serve worthless idols… .”
Lev. 20:23, “… therefore I have abhorred them."
Proverbs 6:16-19, "There are six things which the Lord hates, . . . A false witness who utters lies, and one who spreads strife among brothers."
Hosea 9:15, “… indeed, I came to hate them there! ...
Malichi 1:3, And I hated Esau, ...
Romans 9:13, … Esau have I hated.

David Wood said...

He would probably point out that you're calling Jesus a liar in Matthew 5 (though he'd be much nicer about it).

And he would point out that he's not referring to preference, but to what's included in the concept of a perfect being (a perfect being will be perfect in attributes). If you're saying God isn't a perfect being, that might make you the idolater, not Craig.

After that, he'd go through the passages you cited, interpreting them in a manner consistent with Jesus' claim that God loves everyone. (For instance, you've blatantly distorted "Esau have I hated.")

Of course, if you don't believe God is perfect, you might want to claim that God contradicts himself, but Craig doesn't go there.

But if you're interested, Craig responds to this objection in his debate with Shabir Ally on the concept of God.

Hope that helps.

David Ford said...

Al-Nabia Isa correctly observed that loving those that love you is common:

Luke 6:32-33
http://preview.tinyurl.com/k6tvrcd
For if you love those who love you,
what is your blessing?
For even sinners love those who love them.
And if you do good to those who do good to you,
what is your blessing?
For even sinners do likewise.

It is an inferior love that loves only say believers, or only the righteous, or only people over the age of 50, or only those who praise you, or only people who live in England.

Al-Nabia Isa correctly observed that there is evidence that the Creator extends at least some love to *everybody*-- regardless of whether that person is a tremendous sinner or not:

Matthew 5:43-45
You have heard that it has been said to,
'love your neighbor
and hate your enemy.'
But I say to you,
love your enemies,
and bless those that curse you,
and do that which is pleasing to those who hate you,
and pray for those that take you by force and persecute you,
so that you may be the sons of your Father who is in heaven,
He that raises shemsheh [His sun]
upon the taba [good]
and upon the bisha [evil],
and causes to descend metreh [His rain]
upon the kana [just]
and upon the aiola [unjust].

For an excellent philosophical analysis of Islamic thought by a learned follower of al-Nabia Isa, I recommend

_Sharing Your Faith With A Muslim_ by Abdiyah Akbar Abdul-Haqq (1980), 189pp.
http://www.amazon.com/Sharing-Faith-Muslim-Abdiyah-Abdul-Haqq-ebook/dp/B00AKHM8I0/
This authoritative book is very deep/ rich, with many quotes and citations. It does though need a bibliography.

Craig mentioned the 2 natures of al-Nabia Isa: his human nature, and his divine nature. Here are a couple quotes from the Injil about al-Nabia Isa's human nature:

Philippians 2:7, at biblegateway.com
….he [the Messiah Isa] made himself nothing
by taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
Romans 8:3
For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering….

Craig's remark reminds me of this observation by al-Nabia Isa:
"And do not have fear of
those who kill the body,
but are not able to kill the soul.
Rather, have fear more so of
Him [i.e. God] who is able to destroy the soul
and the body in Gehenna."(Matthew 10:28)

Compare
Sura 4:157, Arberry translation
….their saying, 'We slew the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, the Messenger of God' — yet they did not
slay him, neither crucified him, only a likeness of that was shown to them. Those who are at
variance concerning him surely are in doubt regarding him; they have no knowledge of him,
except the following of surmise; and they slew him not of a certainty — no indeed; God raised
him up to Him; God is All-mighty, All-wise.

About 4:157's expression "Shubbiha Lahum," Abdul-Haqq notes that that expression [Abdul-Haqq on 138]"is very close to the Biblical statement, 'the likeness of sinful flesh and the likeness of men.'" He goes on to [Abdul-Haqq on 138]"make a free translation of the verse in the Koran as follows:
'They slew Him not nor crucified Him but only His likeness of men (or sinful flesh).'

The individuals that had al-Nabia Isa crucified only succeeded in killing his human nature i.e. the temple of his human body, but they did not kill his divine nature.

David Ford said...

John 2
http://preview.tinyurl.com/k6tvrcd
18. But the Yehudeans answered and said to him [al-Nabia Isa],
"What ata [sign] do you show us (so) that you do these things?"
[idiomatic expression for: Prove to us you have authority to do these things]
19. Yeshua answered and amer [said] to them,
"Tear down this temple,
and after three yomin [days] I will raise it."
20. The Yehudeans said to him, "For forty and six years this temple was built, and you will raise it in three yomin?!" 22. But he was amer [speaking] concerning the temple of his body. 22. And when he rose from the grave, his talmida [students] remembered that he had said this, and they believed the Kitaba [Scriptures] and the miltha [word] that Yeshua had said.

Truth Defenders said...

It does help to understand his position, but it does not help in reconciling the verses. "Perfection" as an ontological attribute of God's being (lacks nothing is complete and without flaws) is not the same as his attributes of character i.e. love, mercy, jealousy, anger, or hatred. Just as he is perfect in his love (an attribute) so is he perfect in his hatred (also an attribute). So my objection was not to God's perfection but to Craig's standard for why he could not follow the muslim god over against the Christian God, it was not that YHWH simply is GOD and that Scripture, and all of reality testify to that, but that he could not accept a god that was not all loving, that was my issue. Thnx for the time and opportunity to voice my point.

David Ford said...

[Truth Defenders]"How would Craig reconcile his universally loving god with the following verses?
Psalm 5:5, '…Thou dost hate all who do iniquity,']

Speaking of hate....

Lataster, Raphael (pseudonym). 2006, 2011. _Was the New Testament Really Written in Greek?: A Concise Compendium of the Many Internal and External Evidences of Aramaic Peshitta Primacy_. Unfortunately, Lataster has ceased to be a Christian, and doesn't seem to be selling his book these days. He’s into atheism and pantheism-- see
http://www.raphaellataster.com
From 57-58 of the 2006 version:

Hate or put aside? – Luke 14:26
This is an awesome example, as it solves one of the biggest problems/contradictions of the Greek New Testament. The command to hate others and ourselves!
The KJV says: "If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple."
The argument goes, "How could one follow someone who claims that you need to hate your family and OUR SELF and only love him? Didn't he say to love your neighbor?"
The answer lies in the Aramaic word "0ns" (sone').

0ns (sone')
to put aside
to hate
to have an aversion to

This also makes sense of 1 John 4:20
"If a man says, I love God, and yet hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother
whom he has seen, how can he love God whom he has not seen?"

So with this in mind, the more correct translation of Luke 14:26:
"If any man comes to me, and _doesn't put aside_ his own father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yes, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple."

Osama Abdallah said...

Absolute nonsense! First of all, Jesus is not GOD Almighty, nor is he part of GOD Almighty. This is a lie that was invented.

Second of all, we Muslims are instructed to show the Love of Allah Almighty to others:

"They perform (their) vows, and they fear a Day whose evil flies far and wide. And they feed, for the love of God, the indigent, the orphan, and the captive,- (Saying),"We feed you for the sake of God alone: no reward do we desire from you, nor thanks. "We only fear a Day of distressful Wrath from the side of our Lord." (The Noble Quran, 76:7-10)"

"It is not righteousness that ye turn your faces Towards east or West; but it is righteousness- to believe in God and the Last Day, and the Angels, and the Book, and the Messengers; to spend of your substance, out of love for Him, for your kin, for orphans, for the needy, for the wayfarer, for those who ask, and for the ransom of slaves; to be steadfast in prayer, and practice regular charity; to fulfil the contracts which ye have made; and to be firm and patient, in pain (or suffering) and a dversity, and throughout all periods of panic. Such are the people of truth, the God-fearing. (The Noble Quran, 2:177)"

Also, there are Noble Verses such as the following:

"We created not the heavens, the earth, and all between them, but for just ends. And the Hour is surely coming (when this will be manifest). So overlook (any human faults) with gracious forgiveness. (The Noble Quran, 15:85)"

"Hold to forgiveness; command what is right; But turn away from the ignorant. (The Noble Quran, 7:199)"

"God does not forbid you from showing kindness and dealing justly with those who have not fought you about religion and have not driven you out of your homes. God loves just dealers. (The Noble Quran, 60:8)"


Third, no where do you find in the Glorious Quran that GOD Almighty hates anyone. GOD Almighty either Loves or does not Love certain things:

"God does not forbid you from showing kindness and dealing justly with those who have not fought you about religion and have not driven you out of your homes. God loves just dealers. (The Noble Quran, 60:8)"

"Those who spend (freely), whether in prosperity, or in adversity; who restrain anger, and pardon (all) men;- for God loves those who do good;- (The Noble Quran, 3:134)"

[003:032] Say: Obey Allah and the Apostle; but if they turn back, then surely Allah does not love the unbelievers.


Fourth, the Christian's points in the video would be valid if GOD Almighty would not punish the disbelievers in the Hereafter. A non-stopping everlasting punishment in Hell awaits the unbelievers according to the Christians' beliefs. So their nonsense makes GOD Almighty a lying hypocrite actually; that He Loves ALL EQUALLY AND REGADLESS. But then, there is an endless punishment for many.

Osama Abdallah

David Wood said...

Craig doesn't believe there's any contradiction between God loving and God hating. Love and hate are not opposites. The opposite of loving is not-loving. And Allah is repeatedly described as not loving anyone but good Muslims.

Osama Abdallah said...

"....And Allah is repeatedly described as not loving anyone but good Muslims."

False. In the Glorious Quran, Allah Almighty addresses humans as:

1- O Believers.
2- O mankind.
3- O people of Adam.
4- O people of the Book.

Now pay attention to this Noble Verse:

[049:013] O mankind! We created you from a single (pair) of a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that ye may know each other (not that ye may despise each other). Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of God is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And God has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things).

I am not saying that one doesn't have to become a Muslim. But there is a lot to Salvation in Islam than what some put it. Paradise is not just for the Quran-Believing Muslims. This is why we are always instructed to say GOD ALONE KNOWS when it comes to how people will be judged by GOD Almighty, and what their fate will be.

Osama Abdallah

Truth Defenders said...

Haha, where did Osama come from, I thought he was shamed into obscurity after his last debates. Well, we do love Osama, even though he is a blaspheming, disrespectful Muhammadan.
Personally I don't care for Craig or his methods as a Romanist/Molinist, that is why I called into question his criteria for rejecting allah as God. For that is the same reason many atheists reject the true and living God, that is, they object to the concept of hell and eternal judgement. So they say "i can't believe in or follow a God like that", but our subjective felling about the nature of God should not be the reasons for receiving truth. If God is GOD, then we take Him as He has reveled himself or we suffer the consequences of rejection, that is it. I am to conform to God's attributes not the other way around.

David Wood said...

TD, so you believe it's incorrect to point out that Allah isn't a perfect being, and therefore can't be God?

Odd that people hate Craig so much that they will throw out what should be standard methodology.

I suppose if someone came to me promoting Zeus, I wouldn't be able to say, "The problem with your god is that he's not a perfect being, and therefore he can't be the one true God," since I would be guilty (according to you) of simply preferring my own God to Zeus.

Shame on Craig for not settling for imperfection!

David Ford said...

[Osama Abdallah]"Jesus is not GOD Almighty, nor is he part of GOD Almighty. This is a lie that was invented."

By who? When?

Is it the case that only God can create life?

~Sura 3:43+, Arberry translation
https://archive.org/stream/QuranAJArberry/Quran-A%20J%20Arberry_djvu.txt
'Lord,' said Mary, 'how shall I have a son seeing no mortal has touched me?' 'Even so,' God said, God creates what He will. When He decrees a thing He does but say to it "Be," and it is. And He will teach him [Jesus] the Book, the Wisdom, the Torah, the Gospel, to be a Messenger to the Children of Israel saying, "I have come to you with a sign from your Lord. I will create for you out of clay as the likeness of a bird; then I will breathe into it, and it will be a bird, by the leave of God. I will also heal the blind and the leper, and bring to life the dead, by the leave of God. I will inform you too of what things you eat, and what you treasure up in your houses. Surely in that is a sign for you, if you are believers. Likewise confirming the truth of the Torah that is before me, and to make lawful to you certain things that before were forbidden unto you. I have come to you with a sign from your Lord; so fear you God, and obey you me. Surely God is my Lord and your Lord; so serve Him. This is a straight path".' And when Jesus perceived their unbelief, he said, 'Who will be my helpers unto God?'

[OA]"'We created not the heavens, the earth, and all between them, but for just ends. And the Hour is surely coming (when this will be manifest). So overlook (any human faults) with gracious forgiveness. (The Noble Quran, 15:85)"'

Do you think Muhammad overlooked [Quran]"with gracious forgiveness" his uncle's rejection of Islam?

Arberry translation
111:1 Perish the hands of Abu Lahab,
and perish he!
His wealth avails him not,
neither what he has earned;
he shall roast at a flaming fire
and his wife, the carrier of the firewood,
upon her neck a rope of palm-fibre.

[OA]"Third, no where do you find in the Glorious Quran that GOD Almighty hates anyone."

Do you think Shakir correctly translated the word he rendered "hatred" here?:

Sura 35:39, Mohammad Habib Shakir translation; instead of [Shakir]"hatred," Abdullah Yusuf Ali uses "odium," Marmaduke Pickthall uses "abhorrence," and Arberry uses "hate"
https://www.gutenberg.org/cache/epub/16955/pg16955.txt
"He it is Who made you rulers in the land; therefore whoever disbelieves, his unbelief is against himself; and their unbelief does not increase the disbelievers with their Lord in anything except hatred; and their unbelief does not increase the disbelievers in anything except loss."

[OA]"Fourth, the Christian's points in the video would be valid if GOD Almighty would not punish the disbelievers in the Hereafter."

According to your conception of your God, will your God [OA]"punish the disbelievers in the Hereafter"?

[OA]"A non-stopping everlasting punishment in Hell awaits the unbelievers according to the Christians' beliefs."

I consider myself a follower of al-Nabia Isa. Concerning the question of the nature of "hell," I reject the prevalent never-ending-torture-in-hell position. For one thing, in the original Aramaic version of the New Testament, the words "Sheol"/the grave/death and "Gehenna" are used-- not the Greek words and Greek conceptions of "Hades"/hell and "Taurtarus." My opinion-- which granted is a minority position-- is that the people God judges on the Day of Judgment eventually go out of existence. I'm an annihilationist.

John 3:16
"For God so loved the world that
he gave his one and only Son,
that whoever believes in him
shall not perish
but have eternal life."

David Ford said...

Osama Abdallah, I noticed your pic of the Kaaba. Do you know whether it still contains pictures of al-Nabia Isa and Mary his mother? According to _The Life of Muhammad: A Translation of Ishaq's _Sirat Rasul Allah__ by A. Guillaume, page 552, Muhammed ordered the pictures inside the Kaaba be erased-- *except* for that of al-Nabia Jesus and Mary.
https://archive.org/details/TheLifeOfMohammedGuillaume

Also, I'm curious, what are some Quranic verses you think were abrogated?

"And for whatever verse We abrogate or cast into oblivion, We bring a better or the like of it; knowest thou not that God is powerful over everything?" -- Quran 2:106, Arberry translation

Mike said...

Osama, I have two qurans neither of them contain anything that is noble or glorious when read in its entirety -I think you know this. My prayer to you is that the real Jesus of Nazareth shows himself to you in your dreams. once again the real Jesus who walked with men shows himself to you for who he really was, is and continues to be as we live and breath!

Truth Defenders said...

Mr. Wood, you did not read my last comment. I did not object to Craig's claim to a perfect God, I objected to his use of universal love as the criteria for believing in God. And are you implying I hate Craig because I object to his apologetics, why can't I simply not like some of his apologetics without hating the guy?
So the Zeus analogy does not apply to my objection. Should I restate my objection? Craig claims that the "greatest conceivable being would be all loving" why? That His love would be "unconditional, impartial and universal" again, why? Where does Craig get this criteria from, it is his subjective idea of God. God does hate sinners, God does put a condition on salvation (faith and repentance) etc. So again, I have not objected to a perfect concept of God, but to a standard of "unconditional, impartial and universal" love. Craig starts with what he needs to prove, prove that those are attributes of God, don't just claim that if God is GOD that He must have those attributes, how would Craig know? Craig starts backwards, instead of starting with God, he starts with himself. St. Anselm's "Ontological" Argument for God's Existence cannot start with the concept of God in a vacuum, it presupposes such a being from revelation.

Alex Toland said...

Yeah, Truth Defenders is right on here, Mr Wood.
It's problematic because calling out Allah for hating people is a double edged sword.

I like James R White's comment on Islam:

Combine a wrathful God, a strict law, capricious forgiveness, no emphasis upon justice and equity and the fulfillment of God's law as reflected in His nature, with the fatal exclusion of a Mediator who can show us God's mercy and love and grace in perfection, and here is the result. Few things prove the truth of this more clearly: THEOLOGY MATTERS.

*the result was the picture of the muslim wielding an axe against that police officer*

Dacritic said...

David Ford: "By who? When?"



Haha. Nice one, Mr Ford!

David Wood said...

Alex said: "Yeah, Truth Defenders is right on here, Mr Wood."

Are you guys serious? YOU'RE CALLING JESUS A LIAR!!! DO I NEED TO QUOTE MATTHEW 5 TO YOU, WHERE JESUS COMMANDS US TO LOVE EVERYONE SO THAT WE MAY BE LIKE OUR FATHER IN HEAVEN??? If God doesn't love everyone, we wouldn't be like him by loving everyone. We'd be more loving than him.

But Craig says that God loves everyone, and that Allah doesn't, and concludes that the God of the Bible is greater than Allah, and that Allah therefore isn't God, and you guys start losing it.

I find it sickening really. Christians calling Jesus a liar in order to justify trolling Craig and complaining about him is disturbing (and I am putting it mildly).

Then you completely contradict yourself by complaining about Allah's characteristics. Since anything we put into the concept of a perfect being will be mere personal tasted according to you two, you're basically saying that you don't like Islam-flavored ice cream.

I've been studying reformed apologetics lately, because I like the presuppositional approach. But if your theology leads you to have such contempt for the words of Christ, I want no part of it.

David Wood said...

Truth Defenders said: "And are you implying I hate Craig because I object to his apologetics, why can't I simply not like some of his apologetics without hating the guy?"

LOL! Caught you. So you regard hatred as something bad? But wouldn't it be fitting to hate someone whose apologetics and theology are such an abomination? And wouldn't it be fitting to hate someone who is justifying atheists in their atheism? If God hates people for suppressing the truth, and Craig is helping them suppress it, wouldn't God hate Craig too? And who are you to question God's hatred? Are you greater than God?

So admit that your theology leads you to hate Craig and stop trying to conceal it.

David Wood said...

Truth Defenders said: "Should I restate my objection? Craig claims that the 'greatest conceivable being would be all loving' why? That His love would be 'unconditional, impartial and universal' again, why? Where does Craig get this criteria from, it is his subjective idea of God."

Horrible misunderstanding of Craig's reasoning. Here goes:

(1) The God of the Bible loves everyone (according to Matthew 5, which apparently was edited out of your Bible).
(2) The god of the Qur'an does not love unbelievers (according to Qur'an 3:32).
(3) Hence, the God of the Bible is greater in love than the god of the Qur'an.
(4) If love is a characteristic or attribute of God's nature, then the God of the Bible must be greater than the god of the Qur'an.
(5) If the God of the Bible is greater than the god of the Qur'an, the god of the Qur'an cannot be the true God, because I can conceive of a greater being than the god of the Qur'an.
(6) Any being such that I can conceive a greater being cannot be the true God.

I don't see a premise I would reject here. And if I did, I don't see how I would be so confident of my rejection that I would troll sites looking for opportunities to attack people who maintain it.

David Wood said...

The flip-side of the argument, BTW, is that Allah can't be the true God because his justice is also inferior. The God of the Bible punishes all sin, but the god of the Qur'an doesn't.

However, given your response to Craig's argument, it seems that you would regard perfect justice as a mere taste preference as well. After all, who are we to say what God should be like? A weak, ignorant, unloving, finite, unjust god is no better than an omnipotent, omniscient, loving, infinite, just God. Any superiority we assign to the latter is simply our preference. Right?

I don't even know how I could debate a Muslim if I thought like you guys. How could I object to Muhammad having sex with a little girl when everything is relative?

Alex Toland said...

You're not dealing with us very fairly Mr Wood. I'm not going to accuse you of calling Jesus a liar or anything of the sort, so please don't do that to us.

One: We don't think everything is relative.
Two: We don't think Jesus is a liar.
Three: I haven't a clue how we are trolling.
Four: TD in the first post shared a bunch of different scriptures as a general objection to the "all-loving" tag. How do you read those texts in the light of your belief that God loves everyone completely equally?

David Wood said...

Wow! Now you're insisting that Jesus contradicts the rest of the Bible. You're saying that the scriptures TD quoted rule out the "all-loving" tag. But Jesus claimed that God loves everyone. So Jesus contradicts these other scriptures, according to you. But if he contradicts the rest of God's revelation, he obviously can't be the fulfillment of the law and the prophets.

You might as well say that God can't be all-powerful, since he was overcome by Jacob in a wrestling match. Or that God can't be all-knowing, since he asked Adam where he was.

As far as I can tell, when Jesus gives a perfectly clear teaching about God's nature, I had better agree with it. And if statements in the Psalms seem to conflict with Jesus' claim, then I had better interpret them in a manner consistent with Jesus' claim (rather than assuming that Jesus is simply contradicting them).

I think it's interesting that the sort of love you're saddling God with is precisely the sort of love Jesus condemned.

"For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect."

Alex Toland said...

Okay, sure.
" then I had better interpret them in a manner consistent with Jesus' claim"
Could you do so, please?

Tom said...

@Osama Abdallah said:

"Absolute nonsense! First of all, Jesus is not GOD Almighty, nor is he part of GOD Almighty. This is a lie that was invented."

Response:
Completely reeking of "diarrhea and excrement"! First of all, muhammad was NEVER,ever will be the prophet of the God Of Abraham nor was he any part of the Judeo-Christian framework/narrative. This is the greatest fraud,fabrication(and the 3rd F I will not print)perversion that has ever been concocted.

Truth Defenders said...

Wow, this is what happens when we make men our idols. We start ranting about this, that and the other thing, never really addressing the point.
Mr. Wood said "...you guys start losing it" really, look at the lengthy rants and emotional replies that follow from Mr. Wood, and he still did not address my point and keeps fighting windmills.
I simply objected to Craig's subjective standard for rejecting a kind of deity and Mr. Wood starts accusing me of calling Jesus a liar, wow.

Well, I personally don't need to get into an argument with a brother in Christ to defend some other guys apologetic. But if Craig's apologetic is Mr. Wood's apologetic and he would like to defend that, I have no problem giving him my rebuttals.

Also here goes the personal subjective argument of:
"... if your theology leads you to have such contempt for the words of Christ, I want no part of it."
Really, that is the best you can do?

And no I do not regard all hate as bad, so you "caught" no one, I hate sin, I hate bad apologetics etc. and God hates sinners.
Since you sir are ignoring my point and slandering me because I dared to criticize your idol (Craig) I will conclude this discussion. Thank you again for the time and posts. I still love you and your idol Craig.

David Wood said...

Alex said: "Okay, sure. 'then I had better interpret them in a manner consistent with Jesus' claim' Could you do so, please?"

Oh my goodness. It's true. You believe that Jesus' words cannot be reconciled with the passages quoted by TD, and you're challenging me to prove that they can be reconciled. So Jesus' words are on trial, and until I show how Jesus' words can be reconciled with various Old Testament quotations, you reject Jesus' words and go with your interpretation of the Old Testament quotations.

And then I suppose I'll have to answer a bunch of biblical passages you'll quote to show that God is not all-powerful.

After that, I'll have to answer a bunch of biblical passages you'll quote to show that God is not all-knowing.

Sad day.

David Wood said...

Truth Defenders said: "Wow, this is what happens when we make men our idols. We start ranting about this, that and the other thing, never really addressing the point."

Are you talking about Jesus? Yes, I respond when you come along and start attacking the authority of Jesus' words.

Truth Defenders said: "I simply objected to Craig's subjective standard for rejecting a kind of deity and Mr. Wood starts accusing me of calling Jesus a liar, wow."

And I pointed out that, following your reasoning, ALL CRITERIA FOR DISTINGUISHING THE TRUTH GOD FROM FALSE GODS WOULD BE SUBJECTIVE.

If it's subjective to say, the true God is greater in love than Allah, therefore Allah isn't the true God (because I can conceive of a greater being than him), then it's also subjective to say that a weak, ignorant, unjust God isn't the true God because he falls short of perfection. Everything is a matter of personal taste. You bring this relativistic nonsense on my blog and then get upset when I call you out on it.

Truth Defenders said: "Well, I personally don't need to get into an argument with a brother in Christ to defend some other guys apologetic. But if Craig's apologetic is Mr. Wood's apologetic and he would like to defend that, I have no problem giving him my rebuttals."

Odd that you think Jesus' words are "Craig's apologetic." Jesus condemns the sort of love ascribed to Allah in the Qur'an, and you condemn Craig for using Jesus' claims to rule out false gods. But if we can't stand even on Jesus' words, there's nowhere left to stand (except on your personal preferences).

Truth Defenders said: "Also here goes the personal subjective argument of: '... if your theology leads you to have such contempt for the words of Christ, I want no part of it.' Really, that is the best you can do?"

Whoa! So if someone's theology leads him to toss aside the words of Christ for the sake of theology, and I say I will reject his theology for leading him to reject the words of Christ, you say I'm being subjective? This means you're telling me that Jesus' words aren't the standard. Well, if Jesus' words aren't the standard, there is no standard. So why are you condemning everyone for being subjective, when according to you there is no standard?

Truth Defenders said: "And no I do not regard all hate as bad, so you 'caught' no one, I hate sin, I hate bad apologetics etc. and God hates sinners."

Wow! Since you regard love and hate as mutually exclusive, and since Jesus said that God loves everyone, and since you say that God hates sinners, you've just declared that you're right and Jesus is wrong. Perhaps you should start your own religion.

But notice what you said. You hate sin and you hate bad apologetics, and God hates sinners. But doesn't God hate bad apologetics too? And if so, doesn't God hate bad apologists just as he hates sinners? So aren't you saying that God hates Craig (and everyone who agrees with him)? If so, why wouldn't you also hate Craig? Are you more loving than God?

Truth Defenders said: "Since you sir are ignoring my point and slandering me because I dared to criticize your idol (Craig) I will conclude this discussion. Thank you again for the time and posts. I still love you and your idol Craig."

I actually disagree with Craig on all kinds of issues. But on this particular issue, he's drawing on Jesus' words in Matthew 5 and using them against Islam. You despise Craig so much that you're willing to reject Jesus' words in order to attack Craig. Then you say that you love Craig, when your reasoning would have us believe that God hates him. Once again, you make yourself out to be more loving than God.

Ken said...

The difference between the god of Islam and the God of Christianity is that the God of the Bible loves some sinners from all nations and elects them to salvation. (Rev. 5:9; 7:9; 1 John 2:2; Romans 5:8, John 3:16; Ephesians 1:4-5; Romans chapter 9)

"God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us." Romans 5:8

Islam does not have "Allah loves sinners".

The one who were not elected are the ones who eventually go to hell; and they are ones God "hates", per those verses that Truth Defenders quoted.

But the God of Islam does not love anyone until they first become Muslims and do good works and obey Allah.

The Matthew 5 passage that David and WLC quoted is right and true and Jesus' command to us to love all people - we do not know who the elect are, so we are called to love everyone, share the gospel with them, be patient and kind and leave the judgement to God. God has the right to judge and send people to hell (i.e., hate them); but we do not have that right.

In this way, all the verses are harmonized.

Alex Toland said...

Mr Wood, has someone hacked your account? This doesn't seem like what an honest apologist acts like.

If it is you, then I have to ask again, respectfully, please calm down and answer my request. Could you at least show me what ONE of those verses mean in the light of an all loving God?

(again, Jesus isn't a liar, etc etc, I don't know where you're getting this from)

David Ford said...

It would be nice if the conversational tone here was pleasant.

Hughes, Thomas Patrick. 1895. _A Dictionary of Islam: Being a Cyclopaedia of the Doctrines, Rites, Ceremonies, and Customs, Together with the Technical and Theological Terms of the Muhammadan Religion_ (London: W.H. Allen & Co.), 750pp.
http://answering-islam.org/Books/Hughes/c.htm
On 53, under the entry for "Christianity and Christians":
This "War of the Elephant" marks the period of Muhammad's birth. [MUHAMMAD.]
The Christianity of this period is described by Mosheim as "expiring under a motley and enormous heap of superstitious inventions, with neither the courage nor the force to raise her head or display her national charms to a darkened and deluded world." Doubtless much of the success of Islam in its earlier stage was due to the state of degradation into which the Christian Church had fallen. The bitter dissensions of the Greeks, Nestorians, Eutychians, and Monophysites are matters of history, and must have held up the religion of Jesus to the ridicule of the heathen world. The controversies regarding the nature and person of our Divine Lord had begotten a sect ot Tritheists, led by a Syrian philosopher named John Philoponus of Alexandria, and are sufficient to account for Muhammad's conception of the Blessed Trinity. The worship of the Virgin Mary had also given rise to a religious controversy between the Antiduo-Marianites and the Collyridans; the former holding that the Virgin was not immaculate, and the latter raising her to a position of a goddess. Under the circumstances it is not surprising to find that the mind of the Arabian reformer turned away from Christianity and endeavoured to construct a religion on the lines of Judaism.

Ken said...

The elect, who actually receive the love of Christ, are a great multitude from all nations and ethnicities.

Rev. 7:9

9 After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could count, from every nation and all tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, and palm branches were in their hands; 10 and they cry out with a loud voice, saying,

“Salvation to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”

These are the vessels of mercy - Romans 9:22-23

The vessels of wrath (the sinners that God will hate) are the ones that Truth Defenders and Alex Toland are talking about.

22 What if God, although willing to demonstrate His wrath and to make His power known, endured with much patience vessels of wrath prepared for destruction? 23 And He did so to make known the riches of His glory upon vessels of mercy, which He prepared beforehand for glory

Romans 9:22-23

The great difference is that the vessels of mercy are prepared beforehand (Greek: pro) = election

Whereas the vessels of wrath are not prepared beforehand (Greek pro is not there for them), meaning they are justly left in their sin, and they prepared themselves for wrath (Greek middle voice) because of their sin.

Osama Abdallah said...

@Tom, the Bible talks a great deal about an Arabian Prophet to come from the tents of Kedar and Teman. Visit:

www.answering-christianity.com/predict.htm

Osama Abdallah

David Wood said...

Alex said: "Could you at least show me what ONE of those verses mean in the light of an all loving God?"

I'd be happy to, once you admit that according to Jesus, GOD LOVES EVERYONE. If you're not admitting that, then I have no idea why I would try to show you anything from scripture, because you're just going to believe whatever you want to believe and ignore the words of Jesus.

David Wood said...

Ken said: "The Matthew 5 passage that David and WLC quoted is right and true and Jesus' command to us to love all people - we do not know who the elect are, so we are called to love everyone, share the gospel with them, be patient and kind and leave the judgement to God. God has the right to judge and send people to hell (i.e., hate them); but we do not have that right."

This is horrible. So this is what Jesus SHOULD have said according to the New Revised Ken Version: "You must love your enemies, so that you may be like your Father in heaven, who may or may not love them. You just don't know." Too bad Jesus illustrates what he means by saying that God sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. So does rain only fall on the elect? Maybe in Ken's world.

David Wood said...

Ken said: "The difference between the god of Islam and the God of Christianity is that the God of the Bible loves some sinners from all nations and elects them to salvation."

LOL! This is where Ken goes on to tell us that we must ignore perfectly clear statements of the Bible and reinterpret them in light of his theology.

Hence, when Jesus says, "And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw ALL MEN to Myself," he REALLY MEANS, "And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw CERTAIN ELECT PEOPLE FROM ALL NATIONS to myself." Jesus didn't know how to say that, but fortunately he has Ken to come along and improve his vocabulary.

Likewise, when Paul said, "This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires ALL MEN to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth," he MEANT TO SAY, "God desires CERTAIN ELECT PEOPLE FROM AMONG ALL MEN to be saved." Paul just couldn't manage to say what he meant, you see. But that's what we have Ken for.

And when Peter says that false teachers are "denying the Master who bought them," he must mean that they were bought in some other way, not by Jesus' work on the cross, since that would contradict Ken's theology.

So that's what we have. We will repeatedly reject clear statements in the Bible for the sake of our theology. And we will condemn anyone who doesn't adopt this methodology. And we will troll sites for any mention of Craig, because we are the theology police.

It's odd that I can post a video by a rabidly anti-Christian critic of Islam like Pat Condell, and I will get fewer complaints than when I post a short clip of William Lane Craig criticizing Islam. And people here are so desperate to attack Craig that they don't mind attacking Jesus in the process.

Deleting said...

David your behavior towards Alex, TD and Ken is inappropriate. TD and Alex did not say they 'hated' William Lane Craig, you put those words in their mouths.


Guess what, I don't agree Craig's answer was good either but I can concede that may have been the most appropriate way to answer the muslim's question. It seems though Craig goes more towards philosophy than scripture when he engages muslims in conversation. I think that contributed to the frustration motivating TD to reply the way he did.

And just so you can't say I didn't look at Matthew 5, I did.
Matthew five is the sermon on the mount. Jesus is unpacking the law and demonstrating it means more than what the hearers that day understood because Jesus was teaching 'authority and not as the scribes'.

Yes, he ends Ch 5 with 'be perfect, even as your father in heaven is perfect'. I read all of Matthew 5.
According the verse notes in faithlife study bible, the literal translation is a future tense, You will be perfect. (word in greek is esesthe. It's supposed to be a future tense verb.) 'Those who demonstrate love in the manner attributed to the Father will become perfect-COMPLETE OR MATURE' (caps for emphasis).

I've read their comments. They weren't calling Jesus a liar. You started that with your first response to TD.

You've called them WLC trolls when it wasn't warranted either. TD has been posting on here before you posted the video. Should we call you a WLC internet Groupie because you support WLC by posting and mirroring his videos?

In the midst of re-reading this, I refreshed and saw you're going after another one! Ken? WTF (F in this case stands for 'frick'). Ken agreed with you. He made the mistake of using the word 'Elect' and you just lost it with him too. It didn't matter that he watered down the meaning of 'Elect' you still went after the jugular with him.

You owe these guys an apology. Your responses aren't warranted nor are they reflective of a mature person.

As an aside, Matthew 5 also talks about anger and judgment. Just sayin'...

Deleting said...

EVERYONE LISTEN!!!

STAY AWAY FROM THE FOLLOWING WORDS IN YOUR COMMENT POSTS OR DAVID WILL LOSE HIS S%^@!

WILLIAM LANE CRAIG
REFORMED
ELECT (This one is a doozy. He turned against one of his own).
PERFECTION
MATTHEW CHAPTER 5
KITTENS (just wait...it's coming.)

Ken said...

Hi David,
I appreciate what you do here; I had not intention of emphasizing something against WLC. I didn't mention WLC at all. I was trying to help both sides how to harmonize both sets of verses. I was trying to keep the discussion on the issue and Scriptural texts.

I thought my contribution might help.

I was surprised at your response; oh well.

I think John Piper does a good job of explaining God's general love for every individual (causing rain to fall and the sun to shine on the righteous and the unrighteous, etc.) and His special electing love for the church.

I recommend it for your consideration.
http://www.desiringgod.org/sermons/for-whom-did-jesus-taste-death

John 12:31-32
32 And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself.” 33 But He was saying this to indicate the kind of death by which He was to die.

"all men" has to mean "all kinds of men" - people from all nations, languages, tribes, people groups and social strata (Colossians 3:9-10)

Otherwise, how were those who did go to hell somehow "drawn" ? Because the drawing is God's power to draw people all the way to faith and perseverance - John 6:44 - "no one is able to come to Me unless the Father who sent Me draws him, and I will raise him up on the last day."

Revelation 5:9-10
9 And they *sang a new song, saying,
“Worthy are You to take the book and to break its seals; for You were slain, and purchased for God with Your blood men from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.
10 “You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign upon the earth.”

Not every single individual was purchased, redeemed, but many from all nations were redeemed/purchased.

1 Tim. 2:4
The context is to pray for all kinds of people, kings, and those in authority, etc. see verses 1-3 - all kinds without distinction.

Two of the most helpful books on this issue is 1. Samuel Storms, "Chosen for Life" and 2. James White's The Potter's Freedom.

TheTru North said...

@Osama could you please tell me what verses you refer to that talk about you prophet in the Holy Bible please. I would like to read them and see what they state. Thanks.

TheTru North said...

So, I just wanted to say...whatever Jesus Christ said in the Bible is the truth. I also want to point out that Jesus who is God loves everyone. Jesus Christ hates sins. It's the sins that separate us from him. In the Quran Allah only loves good muslims as we all have learned on this blog. Allah does not say he loves everyone...Jesus died for everyone, not just A specific type of race. By this I know that my God Jesus Christ loves everyone equally, but it's the sin he hates. Our theology does not matter...what matters is our relationship with Christ...as Jesus said what does it profit a man that he gain the whole world but lose his soul. Also, the Bible says men professing themselves to be wise become fools. I agree 100% with David Christ trumps all...men a fallible but He is not...no matter how smart you think you are Christ is the leader. Jesus said love is the most important case closed and he didn't say that love was only for so and so.

David Wood said...

Deleting said: "David your behavior towards Alex, TD and Ken is inappropriate."

Bull. When I can no longer raise a criticism of Islam without turning everything into a discussion of reformed theology, I'd say things have gotten out of hand. AND THAT'S EXACTLY WHAT HAPPENS.

This is a blog called "Answering Muslims." But people try to turn it into "Answering the Theology of Anyone in Any Video David Posts." It's getting old. In fact, you can all post comments somewhere else from now on, because I'm sick of the theology storm troopers storming in and wasting everyone's time ON A BLOG CALLED "ANSWERING MUSLIMS."

It's to the point where I can't post anything from a non-Calvinist without people turning it into a discussion of Calvinism. If Calvinism were the most important topic in Christianity, I would have expected more emphasis on it in scripture. (It reminds of Seventh Day Adventists who try to turn every discussion into a discussion of the Sabbath, or young earth creationists who turn everything into a discussion of young earth creationism.)

For the record, I respond in the exact same manner when someone starts condemning reformed theology. Ask my friend Alex Blagojevic what happened when he said that Calvinism is evil and unbiblical. I went Romans 9 all over him and then started asking him how he came to understand Christianity so much better than the Apostle Paul.

The only side I take on this issue is the OPPOSITE of whoever is trying to disrupt a conversation or condemn everyone on the opposing side.

Like it or not, both sides have a similar approach, because there are biblical passages that seem to agree with each side. So Arminians go to the passages that seem to confirm Arminianism and say, "Here, God means exactly what he says, so wherever he seems to be saying something different, we must reinterpret." Likewise, Calvinists go to passages that seem to confirm Calvinism and say, "Here, God means exactly what he says, so wherever he seems to be saying something different, we must reinterpret" (Ken's reinterpretations of perfectly clear verses are a perfect illustration).

Both sides have some very clear passages that they cling to, and both sides must reinterpret some very clear passages.

Then someone like me comes along and says, "People are getting their heads chopped off, so I'm going to focus on responding to that," but I'm told by the reformed camp (who are much more disruptive of conversations, in my experience), "No, you will not spend your day discussing Islam, because we are going to find a way to change the subject to reformed theology."

You're free to do that elsewhere, but not here. See you all on another site.

TheTru North said...

I agree if I wanted to discuss theology I am sure I can find a website that caters to me. I have been learning a lot of Islam from this blog, and yes sometimes comments under a certain thing that David posts actually has nothing to with the topic. I suppose it's okay sometimes to ask a question that's off topic. But because this is a blog about answering muslims that's what it should be. I have noticed that a lot of the times I am defending my faith not against unbelievers but believers it's weird. David I did have a question for you, I have heard that Islam was started by Catholics because they wanted to have some sort of control in the Middle East, and when Islam got too big they pretty much let it go. Is there any truth to that?

Tom said...

@Osama Abdallah

Please dont waste time, the koran verse say its the Christians & Jews who will find this character muhammd in the Torah & Gospel but we never found it!
opps, yes we did, under false prophet!
Amazing, Isaiah, allah did not even know such a prophet existed!!

Cant believe how puerile muslims are, Christ "prophesied" the coming of an arab prophet,ahmed & this prophesy is found only ahmed's book!
reverse osmosis? ROFL.

David Wood said...

"David I did have a question for you, I have heard that Islam was started by Catholics because they wanted to have some sort of control in the Middle East, and when Islam got too big they pretty much let it go. Is there any truth to that?"

No.

Osama Abdallah said...

"Cant believe how puerile muslims are, Christ "prophesied" the coming of an arab prophet,ahmed & this prophesy is found only ahmed's book!
reverse osmosis? ROFL."

But Ahmed was found in the Dead Sea Scrolls, and the Prophet of Arabia was THOROUGHLY Prophesied in the Old Testament, and in the New Testament there were three expected to come:

1- Elijah.
2- The Prophet.
3- The Messiah.

Instead of vomiting hate, ridicule and nonsense, why don't you visit: www.answering-christianity.com/predict.htm, and actually give a response with substance.

Osama Abdallah

Tom said...

@ David Wood

Totally Agreed, its about
"Answering muslims"

Thanks David for the great help, in addressing this islam perversion!

betwixt said...

I was also taken aback at David's fervid riposte to the comments regarding WLC's response to the Muslim's question and the thread that followed. I thought he was being inappropriately harsh, but then again, why should we expect him to be candid in his response to Muslims and not to fellow-Christians?

I've been following Answering Muslims long enough to know that David doesn't just say things to antagonize. He always has a point to make, and the challenge is to keep up with his thought process!

Tom said...

@Osama Abdallah
"Instead of vomiting hate, ridicule and nonsense"

Hate!!! no osama its about highlighting the excrement, adulteration, perversion, twisting and the propaganda of satan's book, koran!

Its mind boggling that muslims think its "perfectly perfect" for the God Of Abraham to change course and even mind numbing to find that details from the previous Scriptures has been changed drastically, and muslims think none of it & 1600 years of Biblical scripture can be squeezed into 23 years!
It shows that muslims are seriously lacking in intellectual & critical thinking!

Tons of theology is missing, but osama bin think none of it!

islam is the ugly sisters,trying to squeeze/fit into the shoe of the true & rightful owner, and making a false claim that they are the "rightful" owner of the shoe! ROFL.

Where is Isaiah in the koran?

TheTru North said...

@Osama I was wondering when you were going to give me those verses so I can read and decide for myself what those verses speak about. I am still patiently waiting. @David thanks for the response, that is the answer that was in my head just wanted to have another witness.

Osama Abdallah said...

@The Tru North, I already gave the link. There are many passages. Please read them and let me know if you have objections or questions.

Regards,
Osama Abdallah