Whose coming did Jesus predict?

“And when Jesus son of Mary said, “Children of Israel, I am indeed the Messenger of God to you, confirming the Torah that is before me, and giving good tidings of a Messenger who shall come after me, whose name shall be Ahmad.” Then, when he brought them the clear signs, they said, “This is a manifest sorcery.” Sūrah Aş-Şaff (The Ranks) 61, 6

This passage from the 6th verse of Sūrah Aş-Şaff has often been referred to some passages in the Injeel (John 14:15,26; John 15:25 and John 16:7,12) to argue that Jesus promised that Ahmad would come. We think it is important to give an answer to this.

In John’s Gospel we find many statements made by Jesus that point to a person who will come after him, especially in chapters 14-16. Jesus calls him “Parakletos”, “Holy Spirit”1 and “Spirit of Truth”.

Whose coming did Jesus announce?

Jesus says:
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father2, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.” (John 14:15-18 ESV)

From these verses we can see that the one Jesus promises will come is a person because he calls him “another Helper”. This person however, is not human:

…to be with you forever (man does not live forever on earth)

…Spirit of truth (“Spirit” is not usually used for a man)

…whom the world cannot receive (how can this refer to a man?)

…because it neither sees him nor knows him (a human being is visible)

…for he dwells with you and will be in you (no man can dwell inside another, so this cannot refer to a man)

Jesus continues:

“These things I have spoken to you while I am still with you. But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you.” (John 14:25-26 ESV)

The task of the one Jesus promised would come is to teach the disciples3 and to remind them of everything that he said to them. This happened ten days after Jesus left the earth (Jesus is now with God). We will explain this in more detail later.

Reading on in John, we find further hints about the Parakletos in the following passages:

“But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of Truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me. And you also will bear witness, because you have been with me from the beginning.” (John 15:26-27 ESV)

“…going to him who sent me, and none of you asks me, “Where are you going?” But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your heart. Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world4 is judged. I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.” (John 16:5-15 ESV)

The passages quoted below shed light on the task of the Helper, the Parakletos:

15:26 …he will bear witness about me.

16:8-10 …he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment.

The three things listed here, that the Parakletos will convict the world of, all refer to Jesus. The Parakletos will show that it is a sin to not believe in Jesus in way that he revealed himself, and that it is righteous in front of God that Jesus does not continue living on earth and that Jesus has defeated and judged the devil. So the task of the Parakletos is to point to Jesus the Messiah (‘Īsā al-Masih).

16:13 …the Spirit of truth…will guide you into all the truth….

When we read these passages we can see that there is no other way to understand Parakletos other than that God wants to guide the believers through him.

Jesus revealed a lot about God’s loving nature. He showed how much God loves us, his creation, and wants to lead5 us. God sees that we need his help and does not want to leave us like lost sheep without a shepherd (this is described extensively in the Injeel, in John ch. 106). Even in the so-called Old Testament (Torah [Taurāt], Psalms [Zabūr] and Prophets [Nabiyyūn]), we find prophecies that God will guide his people and instruct them in a new way. This will be stronger than what was given through the law or the prophets. God says through his prophet Ezekiel (Nabiyy Du-l-Kifl):

“And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you. And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes and be careful to obey my rules.” (Ezekiel 36:26-27 ESV)

Here we can see that even at that time the people were told that one day God will show his will to all believers and not only to a few prophets or teachers (by the word “believer” we do not mean those who observe religious traditions but those whose highest aim in life is to honour God).

When he says he will “put his Spirit” in man, he means that God places the knowledge of his will right into the inner being of man – directly together with man’s will. Those who have the Spirit will do good out of their inner motivation and allow themselves to be led by God.

Once the prophet John the Baptist (Yaḥyā) said to the people:

“I baptise you with water for repentance, but he who is coming after me is mightier than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptise you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. His winnowing fork is in his hand, and he will clear his threshing floor and gather his wheat into the barn, but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.” (Matthew 3:11-12 ESV)

They understood that John was announcing the imminent coming of the Messiah Jesus (‘Īsā al-Masih). This would be the one who judges and enables people to know God more deeply and live obediently.

Being baptised with the Holy Spirit means to be provided with a God-honouring (spiritual) understanding.

This is what we read from Luke’s report – the so-called Acts of the Apostles, the 5th part of Injeel:

“And while staying with them he ordered them not to depart from Jerusalem, but to wait for the promise of the Father, which, he said, “you heard from me; for John baptised with water, but you will be baptised with the Holy Spirit not many days from now.” (Acts 1:4-5 ESV)

The Spirit came ten days after Jesus said this….

God-fearing men of different nations were gathered for the “feast of the weeks” in Jerusalem. The Parakletos enabled people from different countries and languages to understand each other. Jesus’ message was that all God-fearing people should strive for unity and live as God’s spiritual nation, as one community (Ummah). This miracle is reported in Acts chapter 2.

The Parakletos, the Holy Spirit, enabled them to recognise that Jesus wanted to be known as the spiritual Messiah.

The same Holy Spirit caused the believers to love each other. No man told them that they should share their goods and meet daily. But their common interest in the truth – and the common understanding of God’s kingdom (a spiritual kingdom) and his Messiah Jesus, was the work of the Parakletos, whom Jesus also called the “Spirit of Truth”. They examined the Scriptures daily and were deeply devoted to each other. This is the same among true Christians today.

Another important aspect of the “pouring out of the Holy Spirit” is that it is not restricted to Jews. All nations can receive the Spirit.

In the Old Testament it was already shown that not only Jews were able to recognise God’s will, but also Gentiles. If they separated themselves from idolatry they could belong to God’s nation too (that is to say, to his community; Arabic = Ummah).

Jesus showed that although God wants to help everybody, he can only help those who are conscious of their sins and realise how dependent they are on God. Those who are self-righteous and think they do not need God’s help cannot receive it. This is also the work of the Spirit, to lead people to understand their guilt and turn to God in repentance.

God wants to help all people. He wants to be the God of everyone and to teach everybody the way of righteousness. During his life on earth, Jesus could only speak to a relatively small number of people. He said that it is good that he goes away because then he can send the Parakletos who helps everyone who allows themselves to be taught by God and wants to be God’s friend. He helps us to understand what Jesus taught and to put it into practice. Understanding God is not a matter of intelligence or particular feelings, but requires an upright and honest attitude.

We can therefore draw the conclusion that Sūrah Aş-Şaff 61, 6 has no connection with the passages in John about the one Jesus promised would come, the Holy Spirit.

  1. Holy Spirit – Christians do not think of the Holy Spirit simply as a divine power but as “the one who comforts” and “God’s invisible presence”. 
  2. Father – by this Jesus expresses the closeness of the relation in God and by no means fatherhood in a sexual sense! 
  3. Disciple – another word for pupil; the twelve men who were together with Jesus are meant here. They followed his life and teaching. 
  4. Ruler of this world – this refers to the devil (Satan or Iblīs). 
  5. Leading – in terms of giving a directive; guiding, providing thoughts, not like a puppet. 
  6. Injeel, John 10:1-42 – If you do not have access to a Bible please write to us. 

The uniqueness of Jesus in the Qur’an

We have written this article with the intention of providing a collection of Qur’anic statements about Jesus. We would like to show to which extent the Qur’an emphasizes the uniqueness of Jesus. This collection of passages should also be taken as an invitation to get to know more about Jesus, to read about him in those Holy Scriptures whose main content concerns the life and teaching of Jesus, namely the Injeel, the scriptures of the New Testament. The Qur’anic passages are followed by brief comments and appropriate quotations from the Injeel.

If you would like to share what you think about the importance of Jesus and what he showed us about the way to God, we would be glad to hear from you.

Jesus is the son of a virgin

And mention in the Book Mary when she withdrew from her people to an eastern place, and she took a veil apart from them; then We sent unto her Our Spirit that presented himself to her a man without fault. She said, “I take refuge in the All-merciful from thee! If thou fearest God”…He said, “I am but a messenger come from thy Lord, to give thee a boy most pure.” She said, “How shall I have a son whom no mortal has touched, neither have I been unchaste?” He said, “Even so thy Lord has said: ‘Easy is that for Me; and that We may appoint him a sign unto men and a mercy from Us; it is a thing decreed.'” So she conceived him, and withdrew with him to a distant place. (Surah 19:16-22)1

The belief in Jesus’ birth of the virgin Mary is an important point that Christians and Muslims have in common. The Injeel tells us about Jesus’ conception and the birth in the Gospel of Luke:

“Now in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city in Galilee called Nazareth, to a virgin engaged to a man whose name was Joseph, of the descendants of David; and the virgin’s name was Mary. And coming in, he said to her, “Greetings, favored one! The Lord is with you.” But she was very perplexed at this statement, and kept pondering what kind of salutation this was. The angel said to her, ” Do not be afraid, Mary; for you have found favor with God. And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bear a son, and you shall name Him Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David; and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end.” Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” The angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God. And behold, even your relative Elizabeth has also conceived a son in her old age; and she who was called barren is now in her sixth month. For nothing will be impossible with God.” And Mary said, “Behold, the bondslave of the Lord; may it be done to me according to your word.” And the angel departed from her.” (Luke 1:26-38)

“Now in those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus, that a census be taken of all the inhabited earth. This was the first census taken while Quirinius was governor of Syria. And everyone was on his way to register for the census, each to his own city. Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the city of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and family of David, in order to register along with Mary, who was engaged to him, and was with child. While they were there, the days were completed for her to give birth. And she gave birth to her firstborn son; and she wrapped Him in cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.” (Luke 2:1-7)

For Christians – unlike Muslims – the virgin birth of Jesus is a hint that he is the Son of God. Anyone who reads this text from Luke will quickly realize that for us Jesus’ divine sonship does not mean that we believe he was born as a result of a sexual relationship between God and Mary. Unfortunately this opinion is frequently held by Muslims. However, for us every thought in this direction is nothing other than blasphemy.

When we speak about our belief that Jesus is the son of God we are thinking of the unique relationship Jesus had with God, and the fact that he was conceived by the Holy Spirit, as Luke 1:35 explains.

It is also a remarkable fact that the only woman mentioned in the Qur’an by name is Mary the mother of Jesus. This fact, too, might show us something about the unique importance of Jesus. Muhammad’s parents, on the other hand, are not mentioned in the Qur’an.

Jesus is the servant of God

“The Messiah will not disdain to be a servant of God, neither the angels who are near stationed to Him. Whosoever disdains to serve Him, and waxes proud, He will assuredly muster them to Him, all of them.” (Surah 4:172)

“He said, “Lo, I am God’s servant; God has given me the Book, and made me a Prophet.” (Surah 19:30)

The Bible also represents Jesus as a servant of God. The prophets of the Old Testament described him in this way:

“Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold ; My chosen one in whom My soul delights. I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations.” (Isaiah 42:1)

“He says, “It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant To raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the preserved ones of Israel ; I will also make You a light of the nations So that My salvation may reach to the end of the earth.” Thus says the Lord, the Redeemer of Israel and its Holy One, To the despised One, To the One abhorred by the nation, To the Servant of rulers, “Kings will see and arise, Princes will also bow down, because of the Lord who is faithful, the Holy One of Israel who has chosen You.” (Isaiah 49:6-7)

“Behold, My servant will prosper, He will be high and lifted up and greatly exalted.” (Isaiah 52:13)

“As a result of the anguish of His soul, He will see it and be satisfied; By His knowledge the Righteous One, My Servant, will justify the many, As He will bear their iniquities.” (Isaiah 53:11)

The apostles2 also called Jesus the servant of God:

“The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified His servant Jesus, the one whom you delivered and disowned in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release Him.” (Acts 3:13)

“For you first, God raised up His Servant and sent Him to bless you by turning every one of you from your wicked ways.” (Acts 3:26)

“…but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, …” (Philippians 2:7-9)

Jesus is the servant of God because he had no other aim than to serve God with his whole being. This is why he never “disdained” (as expressed in Surah 4:172) to be the servant of God. Out of love for God and for people he lowered himself very deeply and became like a slave. However, having experienced the deepest depths, he was also highly exalted. He has a name that is above all names. He who was totally disdained became the light of the nations. He spread God’s salvation to the ends of the earth. He, the righteous one, justifies the many and sets them free from their sins. He wants to bless us by turning us away from our wrongdoings. He is Jesus, God’s servant, the Saviour and the Lord.

Jesus is the messenger of God

Just as the term “servant” is not reserved exclusively for Jesus in the Qur’an, neither is the title “messenger”. Moses and Muhammad also bear this same title in the Qur’an. Among others Below are just a couple of passages where Jesus is called a messenger:

“People of the Book, go not beyond the bounds in your religion, and say not as to God but the truth. The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was only the Messenger of God, and His Word that He committed to Mary, and a Spirit from Him. So believe in God and His Messengers.” (Surah 4:171)

“The Messiah, son of Mary, was only a Messenger; Messengers before him passed away….” (Surah 5,75)

God promised a messenger through His prophet Malachi:

“Behold, I am going to send My messenger, and he will clear the way before Me. And the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to His temple; and the messenger of the covenant, in whom you delight, behold, He is coming”, says the LORD of hosts.” (Malachi 3:1)

This text speaks about two messengers. The first one clears the way. He came in the person of John the Baptist. Then comes the Lord who is also called the messenger of the covenant. Through him God established a new covenant with his nation. This second messenger is Jesus. This is why in the New Testament the letter to the Hebrews calls Jesus “the Apostle” (the Greek word “apostolos” means “messenger”):

“Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of a heavenly calling, consider Jesus, the Apostle and High Priest of our confession ; He was faithful to Him who appointed Him, as Moses also was in all His house.” (Hebrews 3:1-2)

From the context of this passage (see verses 5 and 6) it emerges that, in contrast to Moses, who was a faithful servant in the house, Jesus is over God’s house.

Jesus did not use the title “messenger” for himself, but he frequently spoke about the fact that he was sent and about the one who sent him:

“But He said to them, “I must preach the kingdom of God to the other cities also, for I was sent for this purpose.” (Luke 4:43)

“For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.” (John 3:17)

“… so that all will honor the Son even as they honor the Father. He who does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent Him.” (John 5:23)

“Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.” (John 6:29)

“He who sees Me sees the One who sent Me.” (John 12:45)

“This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” (John 17:3)

This selection of the words of Jesus invites us to a deeper consideration of his person. Through Jesus alone, the one sent by God, can we really get to know God. It is through knowing God and the one whom he sent that we find eternal life.

Jesus is God’s Word

“When the angels said, “Mary, God gives thee good tidings of a Word from Him whose name is Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary; high honoured shall he be in this world and the next, near stationed to God.” (Surah 3:45)

“The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was only the Messenger of God, and His Word that He committed to Mary, and a Spirit from Him.” (Surah 4:171)

“That is Jesus, son of Mary, in word of truth, concerning which they are doubting.” (Surah 19:34)

John’s Gospel in the Bible speaks about Jesus as God’s Word.

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. …And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:1-5,14)

The Word spoken by the Eternal God is eternal in the same way as God Himself. God expresses Himself in his Word. Therefore his Word cannot be separated from Him. It is God.

Sunni Muslims believe in the eternity of the Qur’an, because they regard it as God’s Word. We Christians believe in the eternal being of God’s Word that became man in Jesus.

Jesus came into this world by the Spirit of God. He himself is called God’s Spirit

“And she who guarded her virginity, so We breathed into her of Our spirit and appointed her and her son to be a sign unto all beings.” (Surah 21:91)

“And Mary, Imran’s daughter, who guarded her virginity, so We breathed into her of Our Spirit, and she confirmed the Words of her Lord and His Books, and became one of the obedient.” (Surah 66:12)

“People of the Book, go not beyond the bounds in your religion, and say not as to God but the truth. The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was only the Messenger of God, and His Word that He committed to Mary, and a Spirit from Him.” (Surah 4:171)

The Bible teaches clearly that Mary conceived Jesus through the Holy Spirit:

“Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: when His mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit. And Joseph her husband, being a righteous man and not wanting to disgrace her, planned to send her away secretly. But when he had considered this, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife; for the Child who has been conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:18-21)

“Mary said to the angel, “How can this be, since I am a virgin?” The angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; and for that reason the holy Child shall be called the Son of God.” (Luke 1:34-35)

However, the Injeel does not tell us that Jesus is called God’s Spirit. We believe that God’s Spirit is eternal in the same way as God is eternal. God cannot be without his Spirit. Jesus sent God’s Spirit to us, as he also expressed in the following passage:

“When the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, that is the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify about Me.” (John 15:26)

Jesus is like Adam

“Truly, the likeness of Jesus, in God’s sight, is as Adam’s likeness; He created him of dust, then said He unto him, “Be”, and he was.” (Surah 3:59)

According to the Qur’an the similarity between Jesus and Adam is that both came into existence through God’s word of creation. We Christians, however, believe that Jesus did not come into existence by God’s word, but that in his person God’s Word became man.

Paul compares Jesus with Adam in two different ways:

In Romans 5:12-21 he contrasts Adam and Jesus.

“Through Adam sin came into the world, through Jesus grace, life and righteousness. For if by the transgression of the one, death reigned through the one, much more those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.” (Romans 5:17)

In 1 Corinthians 15 the point of comparison is that through Adam physical death entered the world. Jesus, however, brought resurrection.

“But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep. For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.” (1 Corinthians 15:20-22)

Jesus is without sin

There is no passage in the Qur’an which speaks directly about Jesus’ sinlessness. Muslims, however, believe that he was indeed sinless. This is also in harmony with various other statements about Jesus in the Qur’an, such as that God exalted Jesus to himself (see God raised Jesus to himself), or the words of the Angel to Mary in Surah 19,19:

“He said, “I am but a messenger come from thy Lord, to give thee a boy most pure.”

Jesus is called here “a boy most pure”. It is not the purity of the body that is meant here but purity in front of God which is a life without sin. The Qur’an tells us that Muhammad had to pray for the forgiveness of his sins (Surah 40:553; 47:194; 48:25). Concerning Jesus there is no such statement.

On the other hand, in the Bible we find clear testimonies of the sinlessness of Jesus.

Jesus himself said:

“Which one of you convicts Me of sin? If I speak truth, why do you not believe Me?” (John 8:46)

Also the letter to the Hebrews testifies:

“For we do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.” (Hebrews 4:15)

“For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens….” (Hebrews 7:26)

“You know that He appeared in order to take away sins ; and in Him there is no sin.” (1 John 3:5)

Because Jesus is without sin, he can help us to be free of our sins, too.

Jesus answered them:

“Truly, truly, I say to you, everyone who commits sin is the slave of sin. …36 So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.” (John 8:34,36)

Jesus is a mercy from God

“He said, “Even so thy Lord has said: ‘Easy is that for Me; and that We may appoint him a sign unto men and a mercy from Us; it is a thing decreed.'” (Surah 19:21)

After the birth of John the Baptist, Zachariah spoke following words to his son:

“And you, child, will be called the prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare His ways; to give to His people the knowledge of salvation by the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, with which the Sunrise from on high will visit us, to shine upon those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the way of peace.” (Luke 1:76-79)

From Paul’s letter to Titus:

“But when the kindness of God our Savior and His love for mankind appeared, 5 He saved us, not on the basis of deeds which we have done in righteousness, but according to His mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom He poured out upon us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior.” (Titus 3:4-6)

Every surah (except for Surah 9) in the Qur’an begins with an invocation of the merciful God. This demonstrates how important his mercy is. In Jesus God showed us his mercy – his goodness and love towards people. Jesus is the mercy of God in person.

Jesus is a sign for the whole world

“He said, “Even so thy Lord has said: ‘Easy is that for Me; and that We may appoint him a sign unto men and a mercy from Us; it is a thing decreed.'” (Surah 19:21)

“And she who guarded her virginity, so We breathed into her of Our spirit and appointed her and her son to be a sign unto all beings.” (Surah 21:91)

According to the Qur’an Jesus is not only a prophet for the Christians, but a sign for all “beings” – as promised by the prophet Isaiah:

“Then in that day the nations will resort to the root of Jesse6, who will stand as a signal for the peoples; and His resting place will be glorious.” (Isaiah 11:10)

Jesus himself confirmed this promise:

“And I, if I am lifted up from the earth, will draw all men to Myself.” (John 12:32)

Jesus is the sign for all nations. All should find God through him.

Jesus is the Anointed One (the Messiah/Christ)

“When the angels said, “Mary, God gives thee good tidings of a Word from Him whose name is Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary; high honoured shall he be in this world and the next, near stationed to God.” (Surah 3:45)

This verse is just one of many examples in the Qur’an in which Jesus is called the “anointed”7 one. In the Qur’an, though, this expression occurs only as a name. The meaning of this name remains unclear. Therefore, to find out the significance of this name we need to turn to the holy scriptures of the Old and New Covenants.

In the Old Testament Priests and Kings were anointed for their special ministry in God’s nation.

“You shall put them on Aaron your brother and on his sons with him; and you shall anoint them and ordain them and consecrate them, that they may serve Me as priests.” (Exodus 28:41)

“Then Samuel said to Saul, “The LORD sent me to anoint you as king over His people, over Israel; now therefore, listen to the words of the LORD.” (1 Samuel 15:1)

“Then Samuel took the horn of oil and anointed him in the midst of his brothers; and the Spirit of the LORD came mightily upon David from that day forward. And Samuel arose and went to Ramah.” (1 Samuel 16:13)

For this reason the King of Israel is also called the “Anointed”, as in 1 Samuel 12:3:

“Here I am; bear witness against me before the LORD and His anointed8.”

The Old Testament priesthood and kingship point to a future “anointed one” who is able to fulfil both roles in a perfect way. He is to be a priest who intercedes with God for the people as well as a righteous king over all men.

When Jesus came he was neither priest nor king according to earthly standards. He was a simple carpenter. But as the only sinless man he is able to intercede with God for us sinners. He was completely righteous. God exalted him to be the eternal king over all people.

Jesus applied a passage from the book of the Prophet Isiah to himself to show in which way he is the anointed of God:

“And He [Jesus] came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up; and as was His custom, He entered the synagogue on the Sabbath, and stood up to read. And the book of the prophet Isaiah was handed to Him. And He opened the book and found the place where it was written, “THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD IS UPON ME, BECAUSE HE ANOINTED ME TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO THE POOR. HE HAS SENT ME TO PROCLAIM RELEASE TO THE CAPTIVES, AND RECOVERY OF SIGHT TO THE BLIND, TO SET FREE THOSE WHO ARE OPPRESSED, TO PROCLAIM THE FAVORABLE YEAR OF THE LORD.” And He closed the book, gave it back to the attendant and sat down; and the eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on Him. And He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” (Luke 4:16-21)

Jesus did not come as a political king. He brought the good news of the the Kingdom of God to those who were aware of their poverty in front of God. He brought freedom to those who were captives to sin, he removed the spiritual blindness of those who did not know God.

The angel who announced the birth of Jesus expressed it in a similar way:

“She will bear a Son; and you shall call His name Jesus, for He will save His people from their sins.” (Matthew 1:21)

Jesus is the Messiah in order to save us from our sins.

Jesus healed the blind and lepers

“…to be a Messenger to the Children of Israel saying, “I have come to you with a sign from your Lord. …I will also heal the blind and the leper”…Surely in that is a sign for you, if you are believers.” (Surah 3:49)

“When God said, “Jesus Son of Mary, remember My blessing upon thee and upon thy mother, when I confirmed thee with the Holy Spirit…and thou healest the blind and the leper by My leave….” (Surah 5:110)

In the Bible we find a great many testimonies of how Jesus healed the sick. It would go beyond the scope of this article to mention all the relevant passages. Jesus himself gave a short summary of his ministry in his message to John the Baptist:

“…the blind receive sight and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them.” (Matthew 11:5)

We can trust that He who caused the blind to see and cleansed the lepers is also able to heal us today from spiritual blindness and cleanse us from the leprosy of our sins.

Jesus raised the dead

“…to be a Messenger to the Children of Israel saying, “I have come to you with a sign from your Lord. …and bring to life the dead, by the leave of God”. …Surely in that is a sign for you, if you are believers.” (Surah 3:49)

“When God said, “Jesus Son of Mary, remember My blessing upon thee and upon thy mother, when I confirmed thee with the Holy Spirit…and thou bringest the dead forth by My leave….” (Surah 5:110)

The New Testament tells us about three people whom Jesus raised from the dead:

  • a widow’s son from Nain: Luke 7:11-17
  • Jairus the synagogue ruler’s daughter: Matthew 9:18-19,23-26; Mark 5:21-24,35-43; Luke 8:40-42,49-56
  • Lazarus: John 11:1-45

Below we quote a few verses from John 11:

“Jesus said, “Remove the stone.” Martha, the sister of the deceased, said to Him, “Lord, by this time there will be a stench, for he has been dead four days.” Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?” So they removed the stone Then Jesus raised His eyes, and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. I knew that You always hear Me; but because of the people standing around I said it, so that they may believe that You sent Me.” When He had said these things, He cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth.” The man who had died came forth, bound hand and foot with wrappings, and his face was wrapped around with a cloth. Jesus said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.” Therefore many of the Jews who came to Mary, and saw what He had done, believed in Him.” (John 11:39-45)

The spiritual message that Jesus attached to the raising of Lazarus is likewise of great importance:

“Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25-26)

Jesus had authority over the Law

“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.” (Surah 3:50)

The Qur’an confirms the Christian belief that Jesus abolished parts of the Old Testament, especially the Jewish food laws.

In the Gospel of Mark we read the following words which Jesus spoke to his disciples:

“And He said to them, “Are you so lacking in understanding also? Do you not understand that whatever goes into the man from outside cannot defile him, because it does not go into his heart, but into his stomach, and is eliminated?” Thus He declared all foods clean. And He was saying, “That which proceeds out of the man, that is what defiles the man. For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, deeds of coveting and wickedness, as well as deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and foolishness. All these evil things proceed from within and defile the man.” (Mark 7:18-23)

In this way Jesus demonstrated that he is the one whom Moses predicted in the Torah:

“The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your countrymen, you shall listen to him.” (Deuteronomy 18:15)

Only a prophet like Moses could have the authority to “make lawful to you certain things that before (in the Torah) were forbidden unto you”. According to the Qur’an Jesus had this authority.9

Jesus creates

“…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.” …Surely in that is a sign for you, if you are believers.” (Surah 3:49)

“When God said, “Jesus Son of Mary, remember My blessing upon thee and upon thy mother, when I confirmed thee with the Holy Spirit…and when thou createst out of clay, by My leave, as the likeness of a bird, and thou breathest into it, and it is a bird, by My leave….” (Surah 5:110)

This story is not found in the Bible, but appears in apocryphical writings of a later period, such as the so-called “Infancy Gospel of Thomas”10. These two Qur’anic verses are, however, important as they use the verb “to create” to describe the actions of Jesus. Elsewhere in the Qur’an this word only describes God’s actions. God alone is the creator, as it is expressed in the following verse:

“O men, a similitude is struck; so give you ear to it. Surely those upon whom you call, apart from God, shall never create a fly, though they banded together to do it; and if a fly should rob them of aught, they would never rescue it from him. Feeble indeed alike are the seeker and the sought!” (Surah 22:73)

The Injeel testifies clearly that Jesus is much more than the creator of a fly or of living birds from a lump of clay. God created the whole universe through him, who is the eternal Word of God:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.” (John 1:1-3)

“For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities – all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.” (Colossians 1:16-17)

Jesus requires our obedience

“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.” (Surah 3:50)

“If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.” (John 14:15)

Whoever fears God obeys Jesus. But in order to obey Jesus we need to know his commandments. The commands of Jesus cannot be found in the Qur’an, but only in the Gospel11. So if we want to get to know the commands of Jesus there is no other way than reading the Gospel for ourselves. That is the only way we can fulfil what is commanded in Surah 3:50.

God raised Jesus to Himself

“When God said, “Jesus, I will take thee to Me and will raise thee to Me and I will purify thee of those who believe not. I will set thy followers above the unbelievers till the Resurrection Day. Then unto Me shall you return, and I will decide between you, as to what you were at variance on.” (Surah 3:55)

“God raised him up to Him; God is All-mighty, All-wise.” (Surah 4:158)

Jesus is unique as the only person mentioned in the Qur’an whom God raised him up to Himself. That means that Jesus now lives in God’s presence. Other prophets like Muhammad have to wait in their tombs until the day of their resurrection.

There is a similar statement made concerning the prophet Idris (who is perhaps the Qur’anic equivalent of the Enoch12 of the Bible):

“We raised him up to a high place.” (Surah 19:57)

Enoch was only raised up “to a high place”. Jesus, on the other hand, is with God. The Bible speaks repeatedly about the “exaltation” of Jesus to God. The quote below – a passage from Paul’s letter to the Philippians – is an important example:

“Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus, who, although He existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bond-servant, and being made in the likeness of men. Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.” (Philippians 2:5-11)

The consequence of the exaltation of Jesus is that every knee will bow before him, not because he is a different God, but because he was “in the form of God” from the beginning. Whoever adores Jesus adores the only true God.

Final thoughts

Although the Qur’an tells us many things about Jesus, all the information is fragmentary and scattered throughout different Surahs. In order to really get to know Jesus, there is no other way than through reading the Bible. In the New Testament alone we find the fullness of Jesus’ words and deeds. Each Muslim is obliged to believe all the messengers of God and all the holy scriptures. We invite you to read the Gospel and to open your heart for the words that God has revealed to us through Jesus. In his words we find eternal life.

  1. The Qur’an quoted according to the translation of Arthur John Arberry, http://al-quran.info/default.aspx?x=y#&&sura=1&aya=1&trans=en-arthur_arberry&show=trans&ver=2.00
  2. Those disciples of Jesus who were very close to him. 
  3. “So be thou patient; surely God’s promise is true. And ask forgiveness for thy sin, and proclaim the praise of thy Lord at evening and dawn.” 
  4. “Know thou therefore that there is no god but God, and ask forgiveness for thy sin, and for the believers, men and women. God knows your going to and fro, and your lodging.” 
  5. “…that God may forgive thee thy former and thy latter sins, and complete His blessing upon thee, and guide thee on a straight path….” 
  6. Jesse is David´s father. Jesus comes from the family of David. In this way he is the root of Jesse; in him God fulfilled this prophetic word. 
  7. The Arabic word “masih”, equivalent to the Hebrew “meshiach” and the Greek “christos” is rendered “Messiah” in The Qur’an translated by Arthur John Arberry. The literal meaning of this word in all these languages is the “Anointed” one. 
  8. Here the prophet is referring to King Saul. 
  9. Sometimes Muslims argue that the prophet annouced by Moses is “from among your brothers”, that is, from among the Arabs, and that Mohammed is the fulfillment of this prophecy. This argument ignores the fact that the same expression is used in reference to the King of Israel, whose Israelite nationality is explicitly required: “You shall surely set a king over you whom the LORD your God chooses, one from among your countrymen (lit. ‘brothers’) you shall set as king over yourselves; you may not put a foreigner over yourselves who is not your countryman (lit. ‘brother’).” (Deuteronomy 17:15). 
  10. The text can be found here: http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/text/infancythomas-a-roberts.html: “This child Jesus, when five years old, was playing in the ford of a mountain stream; and He collected the flowing waters into pools, and made them clear immediately, and by a word alone He made them obey Him. And having made some soft clay, He fashioned out of it twelve sparrows. And it was the Sabbath when He did these things. And there were also many other children playing with Him. And a certain Jew, seeing what Jesus was doing, playing on the Sabbath, went off immediately, and said to his father Joseph: Behold, thy son is at the stream, and has taken clay, and made of it twelve birds, and has profaned the Sabbath. And Joseph, coming to the place and seeing, cried out to Him, saying: Wherefore doest thou on the Sabbath what it is not lawful to do? And Jesus clapped His hands, and cried out to the sparrows, and said to them: Off you go! And the sparrows flew, and went off crying. And the Jews seeing this were amazed, and went away and reported to their chief men what they had seen Jesus doing.” 
  11. See our article “The Word of God cannot be changed” for an answer to the reproach that the Gospel has been corrupted. 
  12. “Enoch lived sixty-five years, and became the father of Methuselah. Then Enoch walked with God three hundred years after he became the father of Methuselah, and he had other sons and daughters. So all the days of Enoch were three hundred and sixty-five years. Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.” (Genesis 5:21-24). 

Church (Ummatu-Al-Mu´minin)

Sūrah 2:128-129 Abraham’s prayer:

“…and, our Lord, make us submissive to Thee, and of our seed a nation submissive to Thee; and show us our holy rites, and turn towards us; surely Thou turnest, and art All-compassionate; (128)
and, our Lord, do Thou send among them a Messenger, one of them, who shall recite to them Thy signs, and teach them the Book and the Wisdom, and purify them; Thou art the All-mighty, the All-wise.” (129)

God’s nation, his kingdom exists only where people let him be King, that is, where people let his laws govern their lives. God revealed his will to Moses (Mūsā) through laws and sent prophets so that we understand and love God.

God is honoured when people want to do his will. Only then can we speak of God’s nation, his people.

It is man’s free decision to serve God or not to serve him. It is impossible, and even wrong, to determine who is a servant of God according to one’s birth or to a formal act (i.e. baptism or descent).

Serving God is a question of the heart and not of any form.

The Injeel teaches this understanding of service for God in Romans 12:1-2

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is:
his good, pleasing and perfect will.”

Living according to God’s will does not mean partaking in ritual activities, but rather to test what is good and pleasing to God in every situation and to do it.

This passage demonstrates that Christians understood Jesus’ words very differently to how one often finds today. Many of us were raised in a “church” surrounding, and found it difficult to recognise that Jesus’ words point us in a completely different direction to what we were used to. We had to learn to distinguish right from wrong, and to distance ourselves from what is wrong and draw attention to it.

When we write here about Church (God’s people, his kingdom), then we are referring to the words of the Injeel. Church is not, as is commonly understood today, what came about through tradition and corruption over the centuries. We can assess who God’s people are (Ummah) by checking them against God’s word.

In passages in the English Injeel, where the words “Church” or “community” are used, “ecclesia” is the original Greek word. It means “those called out”. Church is, therefore, the fellowship of those who let themselves be called out of a godless life.

The English word “church” has it´s roots in the Greek word “kyriake”, which means “belonging to the Lord” (“kyrios” = Lord). Whoever keeps God’s commands belongs to him. This is possible for everyone, because our great and good God helps everyone who really wants to do what is good.

So church is not a building, but a term describing spiritual brotherhood. Jesus says in the Injeel:

“Then His mother and His brothers arrived, and standing outside they sent word to Him and called Him. A crowd was sitting around Him, and they said to Him, “Behold, Your mother and Your brothers are outside looking for You.” Answering them, He said, “Who are My mother and My brothers?” Looking about at those who were sitting around Him, He said, “Behold My mother and My brothers! For whoever does the will of God, he is My brother and sister and mother.” (Mark 3:31-35)

“He who has My commandments and keeps them is the one who loves Me; and he who loves Me will be loved by My Father1 and I will love him and will disclose Myself to him.” (John 14:21)

If anyone claims to determine how others should believe then they are clearly contradicting God’s will. Since Adam, it has been God’s will that everyone can recognise, understand and serve him. Wherever awe of God and love can be found, God gives his blessing, as promised through his prophets (Nabiyyūn) Isaiah and David (Dāwūd).

“For thus says the high and exalted One who lives forever, whose name is Holy, “I dwell on a high and holy place, And also with the contrite and lowly of spirit in order to revive the spirit of the lowly and to revive the heart of the contrite.” (Isaiah 57:15)

“Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious oil upon the head, coming down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard, coming down upon the edge of his robes. It is like the dew of Hermon coming down upon the mountains of Zion; for there the LORD commanded the blessing – life forever.” (Psalm [Zabūr] 133)

Someone might say that a leader in the church is necessary, otherwise there will only be confusion. This may be right in principle, but we must consider whether actually God himself should suffice as our leader, and whether it could be God’s will to have an additional leader (i.e. Pastor, Priest or other religious leader) over the fellowship of believers.

We can take a look at what Jesus said about this in the Injeel:

“They love the place of honor at banquets and the chief seats in the synagogues, and respectful greetings in the market places, and being called Rabbi2 by men. But do not be called Rabbi; for One is your Teacher, and you are all brothers. Do not call anyone on earth your father; for One is your Father, He who is in heaven. Do not be called leaders; for One is your Leader, that is, Christ. But the greatest among you shall be your servant. Whoever exalts himself shall be humbled; and whoever humbles himself shall be exalted.” (Matthew 23:6-12)

Here Jesus doesn’t only criticise the Jewish spiritual leaders for seeking honour, but he also says that no one should hold such titles, and that all believers are brothers and sisters. In church as Jesus meant it, there is no leader except God. Each member bears responsibility for the others. In questions of faith, each one knows that need to understand what they believe, to be able to give reasons for it and to be able to help each other in it.

“And there arose also a dispute among them as to which one of them was regarded to be greatest. And he said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who have authority over them are called ‘Benefactors’. But it is not this way with you, but the one who is the greatest among you must become like the youngest, and the leader like the servant. For who is greater, the one who reclines at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at the table? But I am among you as the one who serves.” (Luke 22:24-27)

In the passage quoted above in Luke, “…But it is not this way with you…”, Jesus doesn’t only condemn the proud attitude, but expresses that there cannot be any hierarchical differences among those who serve God: “But you are not to be like that.” If this is not the case, then it is worldly (worldly = like among those who don’t know God).

Christians live as brothers and sisters without hierarchy. God is their only leader.

It is possible to recognise whether someone is a true Christian or only claims to be one by whether they live in the serving attitude that Jesus commanded.

“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another. By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34-35)

True love among one another is the sign for true love for God.

Jesus didn’t want to create a church structure or order of service, but gave himself as the example that devotion to God and one’s neighbour and the endeavour for deep unity is what is most essential.

The report in Acts 2:42-47 shows that those who took Jesus´ call seriously understood his intention, and lived it out by meeting daily, to share together and live in unity.

“They were continually devoting themselves to the apostles’ teaching and to fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer. Everyone kept feeling a sense of awe; and many wonders and signs were taking place through the apostles. And all those who had believed were together and had all things in common; and they began selling their property and possessions and were sharing them with all, as anyone might have need. Day by day continuing with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they were taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people.” (Acts 2:42-47a)

Meeting for “Sunday Services” at specific times on Sunday contradicts the Bible. Such meetings were introduced at a later period (2nd century after Christ) and don’t have anything to do with original Christianity. They rather arose out of formalism.

Jesus fought for people to understand God’s will in it’s content and not to practice it formalistically or to give it a political interpretation.

Jesus lived at a time when the Jewish territory was occupied by the Romans. The Jews had very strong expectations at this time that a political freedom fighter, or Messiah, would come. They wanted to understand Jesus in this way, but he clearly expressed that he was not trying to call people to a political kingdom, but to a spiritual one.

“Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If My kingdom were of this world, then My servants would be fighting so that I would not be handed over to the Jews; but as it is, My kingdom is not of this realm.” (John 18:36)3

“Now having been questioned by the Pharisees as to when the kingdom of God was coming, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God is not coming with signs to be observed; nor will they say, ‘Look, here it is!’ or, ‘There it is!’ For behold, the kingdom of God is in your midst.” (Luke 17:20-21)4

As we read in Sūrah 2:128-129 at the beginning, it was Abraham’s prayer that someone would be sent from God to lead the people to a deep understanding of his word and to purify the nation.

Jesus’ aim was to show the Jews that political freedom from the Romans was not actually true freedom, and that they needed to be set free to do God’s good will, without being distracted by anything.

Jesus is the one God sent (the Messiah, the Saviour).

He taught God’s will so clearly, leading us to a far deeper understanding of what is good and by that enabling us to recognise what is bad and reject it.

As Christians, we believe that Jesus did not only bring a revelation from God, but that God revealed himself in Jesus. This means that Jesus’ revelation of what is good was entirely unique.

God doesn’t need anything from us – its rather we that need to understand God in the right way and to live our lives accordingly. We can’t give anything to God, we can only “sacrifice” our lives to him – meaning that we love and honour him completely. Only God is worthy of our honour.

Jesus called all people to repent and to devote themselves to the one true God (Tauhīd). He spoke clear words. Anyone who does not seek God with his whole heart cannot be a servant of God (Al-Mu’min). It is in this sense, as Al-Mu´minūn, that we see ourselves as Christians, in that we give our entire life to God in sincere devotion and help each other to be obedient.

Jesus made the unique claim, not only to show the way to God, but to be the way itself. He called all people to take his words seriously, to follow HIM and to love what is good.

Loving good is necessarily connected with distancing oneself from evil.

David sang in Psalm (Zabūr) 1 that sinners cannot remain in fellowship with the righteous:

“How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, Nor stand in the path of sinners, Nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, Which yields its fruit in its season And its leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, But they are like chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous. For the LORD knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish.” (Psalm 1)

As mentioned above, Christians are those who let themselves be called out of a corrupt generation5 (i.e. who have turned away from God). He spoke of two paths:

“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it. Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So then, you will know them by their fruits. Not everyone who says to Me, “Lord, Lord”, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?” And then I will declare to them, “I never knew you; depart from me, you who practice lawlessness.” (Matthew 7:13-23)

Only he who takes the narrow path of obedience will reach God. Jesus did not want to say that there can only be few that go this path. As a realist, however, he knew that only a few would do so. Devotion to God will only ever be important to few people, who don’t just want to live by their own ideas – even own religious ideas.

“Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness, or what fellowship has light with darkness? Or what harmony has Christ with Belial, or what has a believer in common with an unbeliever? Or what agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; just as God said, “I will dwell in them and walk among them; and I will be their God, and the shall be my people. Therefore, come out from their midst and be separate”, says the Lord, “and do not touch what is unclean; and I will welcome you. And I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to Me”, says the Lord Almighty. Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.” (2 Corinthians 6:14-7:1)

“Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the boastful pride of life, is not from the Father, but is from the world. The world is passing away, and also its lusts; but he one who does the will of God lives forever.” (1 John 2:15-17)

“Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man´s enemies will be the members of his household. He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me; and he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who has found his life will lose it, and he who has lost his life for My sake will find it.” (Matthew 10:34-39)

When Jesus said that he didn’t come to bring peace but a sword, he didn’t mean it politically. He didn’t want to start a war. He meant it spiritually, that is to say, that the separation that comes as a result of faith, cuts through the deepest human relationships. Even those who, earlier, were best friends and family, become enemies as they remain in unbelief. Despite this, we must obey God and not try to fulfil people’s expectations.

“But Peter and the apostles answered, “We must obey God rather than men.” (Acts 5:29)

By separating from evil, including wicked people, we do not mean that everything bad in the world should be destroyed. Godless people still have human rights, and will finally be judged by God. It is important to allow each their freedom to live as they want unless they endanger or destroy the lives of others.

Before we can distance ourselves from others, we have to assess why things are wrong. It is important to name what is wrong (i.e. in what others do), to explain it and to appeal to them to change. Only when it is visible that someone does not show willingness to change for the better, is it right to clearly separate from them. Separation is not a question of protecting oneself, but rather of love for truth (i.e. that truth is not distorted).

It is important to reject sin deeply, but not to reject the sinner. We must always keep a loving/helpful attitude towards them. Jesus called this loving your enemies. Christians seek peace and unity with all people. True unity however, means talking openly about the differing viewpoints, and wanting to understand each other and find the truth. We are convinced that the one true God, creator of heaven and earth, wants to help everyone who is God-fearing to clearly recognise his will. He can do this as long as we are humble and let him change whatever is wrong in our thinking.

  1. An expression of profound inner connection with God. Jesus didn’t have an earthly father, and “Father” certainly doesn’t mean that he is a relative in a literal, genetic sense, rather, the spiritual relationship is expressed. 
  2. “My Master!” – a respectful way of addressing a spiritual teacher in late Judaism. 
  3. Explanation of John 18:36 “My kingdom is not of this world”: Jesus made this statement to the Roman proconsul of Judea, Pontius Pilate. It was never Jesus’ aim to have political influence, and certainly not to be a world ruler, and his disciples did not take up arms to defend him. When Peter once cut a soldier’s ear off, Jesus healed it again. Sūrah 11:118 seems to reflect the understanding that God’s kingdom is not of this world. If everything went according to God’s perfect will without the free will of man, then there would only be one community, one nation. Many people do not want this, however, and God does not force them to submit to him. It is wrong to try to make devotion to God obligatory, for example, as in a state religion. This is a recipe for hypocrisy. If anyone is interested in the context to John 18:36, it is good to read verses 26-40. If you don’t have a Bible, then you can contact us. 
  4. Explanation of Luke 17:20-21 “…is among you”: The Pharisees expected that it would be visible when God establishes his kingdom on earth. Jesus answered them that they will not be able to recognize it by outward signs, but that it is already among them. By this he referred to himself. He called everyone to follow him and to belong to this spiritual kingdom. 
  5. By this we do not mean atheism, but especially pseudo-religion (pseudo = false), that is, people who speak piously, but act wrongly. 

What should we believe? The Six Pillars of Iman

In this article we want to address the basic beliefs of Islam, the so-called “Six Pillars of Iman”1 from a Christian perspective. We want to see what the Bible says about these basic beliefs.

Muhammad answered the question of what faith is by explaining:

“Thou shalt believe
in the One God,
in His angelic messengers,
in His revealed books,
in His human messengers,
in the Last Day (or Resurrection and final judgement)
and in the determination of good and evil by God2.”

From this statement of Muhammad’s, the so called six pillars of Iman – the six most important beliefs of Islam – are derived.

As disciples of Jesus, we want to consider these six points, which display a basic similarity to the teachings of Jesus, in the light of Jesus’ and his apostles’ words, and in our dialogue with Muslims to point out the significant aspects of a relationship with God.

1 Preface: What is belief?

Before we deal with these “six pillars” in detail, let us briefly mention some relevant aspects of what we call belief.

In its everyday use the word “to believe” often expresses some level of uncertainty. Someone who believes that it will rain tomorrow has perhaps a reasonable suspicion but no certainty.

Paul, in his letter to the Christian community in Rome, writes about the belief of Abraham in a very different way:

“…in the presence of Him whom he believed, even God, who gives life to the dead and calls into being that which does not exist. In hope against hope he believed, so that he might become a father of many nations…. Without becoming weak in faith he contemplated his own body, now as good as dead since he was about a hundred years old, and the deadness of sarah’s womb; yet, with respect to the promise of God, he did not waver in unbelief but grew strong in faith, giving glory to God, and being fully assured that what God had promised, He was able also to perform.therefore it was also credited to him as righteousness.” (Romans 4:17-22)

The characteristics of Abraham’s belief were the hope in God contrary to all human expectations, his endeavour to give praise to God and his complete certainty that God would fulfil His promise. These characteristics are also visible in the faith of Abraham’s children. Our faith leads us to trust completely in the work of the Almighty.

The faith Abraham demonstrated through his life is the very opposite of an uncertain assumption. Faith is being fully certain, even if we cannot always perceive the subject of our faith with our senses.

Faith means two things:

On the one hand, faith means to entrust and devote our lives entirely to God, and that no longer we are the lords of our lives, but God alone.

On the other hand, faith means believing everything God has revealed to us. Faith is not just a personal relationship; it has a very specific content.

These two aspects are of necessity inseparably bound together. We cannot say that we believe in God if we reject the content of His revelation. Similarly, a purely rational acceptance of the content of the faith without devoting our lives to God is nothing but dead theology.

“And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.” (Hebrews 11:6)

Now let us turn to the main content of faith according to Islamic tradition:

2 One God

The belief in the one and only God is not just the incontrovertible teaching of every monotheistic religion. The existence of the one and only God is obvious to every earnest seeker through creation.

Paul also writes:

“…because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse.” (Romans 1:19-20)

The basic creed of faith of the nation of Israel was:

“Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one!” (Deutoronomy 6:4)

Jesus used these words when he answered a question about the greatest commandment:


We also find the confession of the oneness of God again and again in the writings of the apostles.

For instance, Paul said to the idolators in Lystra:

“…and [we] preach the gospel to you that you should turn from these vain things to a living God, WHO MADE THE HEAVEN AND THE EARTH AND THE SEA AND ALL THAT IS IN THEM.” (Acts 14:15)

Here are some more examples from the New Testament (Injeel):

“…we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one.” (1 Corinthians 8:4)

“…whereas God is only one.” (Galatians 3:20)

“…the blessed and only Sovereign, the King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone possesses immortality and dwells in unapproachable light, whom no man has seen or can see. To Him be honor and eternal dominion! Amen.” (1 Timothy 6:15-16)

These examples show clearly that the Christian belief, as it was taught by Jesus and the apostles, is the belief in the one and only God.

But what about worshipping Jesus as God?

For us Christians Jesus is NOT a God besides Allah could be assumed from Surah 5:

“And when God said, “O Jesus son of Mary, didst thou say unto men, ‘Take me and my mother as gods, apart from God?'” He said, “To Thee be glory! It is not mine to say what I have no right to. If I indeed said it, Thou knowest it, knowing what is within my soul, and I know not what is within Thy soul; Thou knowest the things unseen.” (Surah 5:116)

Perhaps the following quote from the Islamic scholar M. Hamidullah can help to understand the Christian teaching better:

“There are several ways to establish contact or communication between man and God. The best would have been incarnation, but Islam has rejected it. It would be too degrading for a transcendent God to become man, to eat, drink, be tortured by His own creatures, and even be put to death3.”

God is absolute and perfect. We have to leave it up to him to decide how He reveals Himself to us and we must not judge according to our human way of thinking and say that something is too degrading for Him. What He considers the best to do cannot be impossible for Him to put into practice. We are convinced that in His wisdom, goodness and infinite love for us, his people, He chose this best way to help us. God became one of us. Not an other, second god besides the Almighty, but the Almighty Himself lowered Himself for us in order to lift us up to Himself. In Jesus, God Himself spoke to us. Thus, even the Qur’an calls him a “Word from Allah”.

“When the angels said, “Mary, God gives thee good tidings of a Word from Him whose name is Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary; high honoured shall he be in this world and the next, near stationed to God (to Allah).” (Surah 3:45)

“That is Jesus, the son of Mary – the word of truth about which they are in dispute.” (Surah 19:34)4

This is in harmony with what John, one of Jesus’ closest confidants, writes about him:

“And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14)

We are aware that the belief in Jesus’ divinity and in the trinitarian nature of the only God is the most difficult and the least acceptable part of Christian doctrine for Muslims (and not only for them). These thoughts should serve as a help to take an unprejudiced look even at this difficult point of our teaching. God is good and He wants and also does the very best for us. As Christians, we reject idolatry with the same determination as every believing Muslim. God is ONE and it is impossible to associate someone or something with him. God’s incarnation does not contradict God’s oneness; it deepens our belief in his oneness. Through it, God displays the greatness of His inexpressible love and grace.

3 The angelic messengers

The existence of created personal spiritual beings is a fact which the Christian Holy Scriptures presuppose. Nevertheless we do not find any distinctive teaching about angels and evil spirits, because God wants to call our attention first of all to Himself, the creator of the visible and invisible world. We regard the angels to be…

“…ministering spirits, sent out to render service for the sake of those who will inherit salvation.” (Hebrews 1:14)

In numerous passages of both the Old (Taurat) and the New Testament (Injeel) angels appear as carriers of the divine revelation. These beings by no means deserve any kind of religious veneration.

In the Book of Revelation an angel puts it like this:

“…I am a fellow servant of yours and of your brethren the prophets and of those who heed the words of this book. Worship God.” (Revelation 22:9)

As bearers of divine revelation the importance of angels decreases in view of the fact that God Himself spoke to us in Jesus Christ. That’s why it says about Jesus:

“…who is at the right hand of God, having gone into heaven, after angels and authorities and powers had been subjected to Him.” (1 Peter 3:22)

The Holy Scriptures also assume that a part of the spiritual beings which were created to be good by God rebelled against their creator and now they try to lead believers away from their path of faith. The Holy Scripture exhorts us to endurance in this spiritual fight:

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of His might. Put on the full armor of God, so that you will be able to stand firm against the schemes of the devil. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, so that you will be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm.” (Ephesians 6:10-13)

These warnings must certainly be taken seriously. But it is completely clear that no evil spirit could ever come close to being God’s rival.

Hence James writes:

“Submit therefore to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” (James 4:7-8)

4 The revealed books

God loves us and He does not want us to stumble around in spiritual darkness5 , so He revealed His will to mankind. Again and again He spoke to people through men of God. In accordance with God’s will their warnings and encouraging words apply not only to their own generations but were to be preserved for all people in every time and nation. In this way the word of God, which was first proclaimed in a specific situation to specific people, becomes an invitation from God for all people to follow His commandments and in this way to glorify the Almighty.

That is why Paul writes to his co-worker Timothy:

“…and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.” (2 Timothy 3:15-17)

The Scriptures were not sent down on a single occasion. God spoke to the people time and time again. The people of Israel collected the revealed words over the course of their history as God’s nation. With time this collection grew into a small library of books which the Jews call the “Tenach”6, and we Christians call the “Old Testament”. The Qu’ran also contains references to the Taurat (which we call the five books of Moses or the Pentateuch), to the Zabur (the Psalms) and to books of various prophets (like Jonah7).

Jesus came to confirm the Scriptures and to fulfil them. Jesus himself said this:

“Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill.” (Matthew 5:17)

as does the Qu’ran:

“And We sent, following in their footsteps, Jesus son of Mary, confirming the Torah before him and We gave to him the Gospel, wherein is guidance and light, and confirming the Torah before it, as a guidance and an admonition unto the godfearing. So let the People of the Gospel judge according to what God has sent down therein. Whosoever judges not according to what God has sent down – they are the ungodly.” (Surah 5:46-47)

Because the Holy Scriptures of the nation of Israel were also the Holy Scriptures of Jesus, we Christians accept and value these scriptures, which we call the “Old Testament”. In this way we follow the example of Jesus and his disciples. In their words we find quotations from the Holy Scriptures of Israel again and again. The new covenant which Jesus brought to us builds on the old covenant and brings it to fulfillment.

The Qur’an too urges Muslims to believe in all the revealed scriptures:

“Say you: “We believe in God, and in that which has been sent down on us and sent down on Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac and Jacob, and the Tribes, and that which was given to Moses and Jesus and the Prophets, of their Lord; we make no division between any of them, and to Him we surrender.” (Surah 2:136)

In order to believe in something you have to get to know it. That is why we want to invite all sincere Muslims who, in the words of the Qu’ran, want to make no division between the various prophets and their scriptures, to read the Holy Scriptures of the Jews and the Christians with the same deep respect as the Qu’ran. There is no other way to be a true Muslim.

But how can we know that the Scriptures we find in the Bible today are the same as what the Qu’ran speaks about?

In the second Surah Muslims are urged to believe the scriptures of the prophets before Muhammad. This presupposes that those scriptures really must have existed at that time (7th century AD). Yet the books which we Christians call the “New Testament” and in the Qu’ran are called Injeel are attested to by manuscripts from much earlier times. The so called Papyrus 668, originating in the second century contains almost the whole gospel of John. Similarly Papyrus 469, which originates in the second century10 includes a large part of the Apostle Paul’s letters. Likewise, there is a large number of manuscripts of all the other scriptures of the New Testament (Injeel) which originated long before the Qu’ran.

The “Gospel of Barnabas” – a work highly regarded by some Muslims – is, on the other hand, a work originating in a much later period11. It is impossible that when the Qur’an mentions the “Injeel” it is referring to this work.

If, as we have demonstrated, the text of the Bible which was widely accepted at the time of the writing of the Qur’an is the same as what we have today12, the above mentioned quotation from the Qu’ran can only mean that every Muslim ought to endeavour to get to know and believe the earlier revealed Scriptures as we find them in the Bible today.

Jesus said:

“…the words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.” (John 6:63b)

His words are spirit and life – not for his contemporaries only, but for everybody who listens to them or reads them.

5 The human messengers

The question of God’s messengers is closely connected to the previous point of the revealed books since the Holy Scriptures contain his messengers’ words.

Barnabas summarizes the history of revelation in his letter to the Hebrews in the following way:
“God, after He spoke long ago to the fathers in the prophets in many portions and in many ways, in these last days has spoken to us in His Son13, whom He appointed heir of all things….” (Hebrews 1:1-2)

God spoke through the prophets again and again throughout the ages. His very last and final word to the human race was transmitted through Jesus. That is the clear message of the Injeel.

Jesus himself said:

“All things have been handed over to Me by My Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father; nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him.” (Matthew 11:27)

If all things have been handed over to Jesus then there cannot be any further revelation. The way to God is through Jesus.

Also the Qur’an confirms that Jesus is God’s anointed one, the Messiah whom the Israelites expected on the basis of the words of the prophets.

“…The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was only the Messenger of God, and His Word that He committed to Mary, and a Spirit from Him. …” (Surah 4:171)

His birth of the virgin Mary became a sign for the whole world:

“And she who guarded her virginity, so We breathed into her of Our spirit and appointed her and her son to be a sign unto all beings.” (Surah 21:91)

Both the Bible and the Qur’an testify to the parallelism between Adam and Jesus:

“Truly, the likeness of Jesus, in God’s sight, is as Adam’s likeness; He created him of dust, then said He unto him, “Be”, and he was.” (Surah 3:59)

Both Jesus and Adam were begotten without a human father. This parallelism points at Jesus’ uniqueness.

“So also it is written, “The first MAN, Adam, BECAME A LIVING SOUL.” The last Adam (=Jesus) became a life-giving spirit.” (1 Corinthians 15:45)

Just as Adam marked the beginning of mankind, so too Jesus marked the beginning of a new mankind. He is the final message for all people.

Muslims and Christians agree that Jesus is not dead now but that he is with God and that he will return.

“Men of Galilee, why do you stand looking into the sky? This Jesus, who has been taken up from you into heaven, will come in just the same way as you have watched Him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:11)

…God raised him up to Him; (Surah 4:158)14

Jesus himself also claimed to be the judge of the whole world.

“For not even the Father judges anyone, but He has given all judgment to the Son.” (John 5:2)

Muhammad also spoke of Jesus as the righteous judge over all people15.

Jesus, the last person God spoke through, is now with God and will come again to judge the world. Nothing more can be added to his message.16

6 The Last Day

Belief in the day of judgment of all men resulting either in eternal reward or eternal punishment is a basic conviction shared by both Christianity and Islam.

Jesus said:

“Do not marvel at this; for an hour is coming, in which all who are in the tombs will hear His voice and will come forth; those who did the good deeds to a resurrection of life, those who committed the evil deeds to a resurrection of judgment.” (John 5:28-29)

We understand heaven and hell in connection with the relationship with God. Heaven means eternal fellowship with God, hell means eternal separation from our Creator and thus from the source of our happiness.

That is why the Jewish and Christian Holy Scriptures say:

“With Your counsel You will guide me, And afterward receive me to glory. Whom have I in heaven but You? And besides You, I desire nothing on earth. My flesh and my heart may fail, But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” (Psalm 73:24-26)

“This is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom You have sent.” (John 17:3)

We find the same idea in John’s Revelation expressed in a somewhat poetic form:

“I saw no temple in it (in the new city Jerusalem), for the Lord God the Almighty and the Lamb (Jesus) are its temple. And the city has no need of the sun or of the moon to shine on it, for the glory of God has illumined it, and its lamp is the Lamb.” (Revelation 21:22-23)

When hell is depicted as fire or darkness the intention is not to describe physical suffering but a deep spiritual distress due to the separation from our Creator who is the only one who is able to give eternal fulfilment to his creatures. Thus, in the Bible we find the expression “to be outside” as a description of hell.

“In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth when you see Abraham and Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, but yourselves being thrown out.” (Luke 13:28)

“And nothing unclean, and no one who practices abomination and lying, shall ever come into it (the new Jerusalem), but only those whose names are written in the Lamb’s book of life.”(Revelation 21:27)

We must certainly not imagine Heaven (or in Islamic terms, Paradise) as a place of earthly pleasures17, which will be presented to us after an life of abstinence on Earth; nor should we conceive Hell as a torture chamber18, in which God delights in inflicting pain on people.

God is love (1 John 4:8) an he wants all people to be saved (1 Timothy 2:4). Only those who reject this divine love by their own free decision will have no part in it. And that is hell.

7 The determination of good and evil

Both the Bible and the Qur’an contain statements confirming that God is the origin and ultimate cause of everything. Unfortunately in some “Christian” circles this led to the terrible false teaching that God does not give people freedom to decide and he predestines them for heaven or hell according to his own will. The false teaching of predestination19 totally contradicts God’s revelation.

We do not want to touch upon the inner-Islamic discussions on this topic; instead we want to explain the teaching of the Bible which, on the one hand, declares that God is the omnipotent Lord and Creator of the Universe, while on the other hand reveals his love which gives us freedom and responsibility for our actions.

In the book of the prophet Isaiah God says:

“That men may know from the rising to the setting of the sun that there is no one besides Me. I am the LORD, and there is no other, The One forming light and creating darkness, causing well-being and creating calamity; I am the LORD who does all these.” (Isaiah 45:7)

The context of this verse shows that the aim is not to say that God causes evil. The fact that he created calamity means that he punished the people of Israel through the Babylonian exile. But now he brings about peace. He delivers his nation from captivity. These words show us that God works. Even though this world is full of sin and wickedness, God brings about the salvation of those who seek Him wholehartedly.

In the same chapter God calls all people to turn to him.

“Turn to Me and be saved, all the ends of the earth; For I am God, and there is no other.” (Isaiah 45:22)

Turning to God presupposes freedom. God’s activity and human freedom are not in contradiction. Thus all the messengers of God, in full conviction of His omnipotence, time and time again called the people to repent. It is this very act of turning to him freely that honours and glorifies God, not puppet-like obedience as is assumed by people who believe in the teaching of predestination.

Our love is the free response to God’s love, which He demonstrated to us most clearly through Jesus.

“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him.” (John 3:16-17)

“We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.” (1 John 3:16)

8 Closing words: What are the consequences?

The previous quotation from the 1st Letter of John points out the consequences of faith effected by God. Faith always goes beyond one’s own personal religious experience and leads us to love in practice, as manifested in the life of the first community of Jesus’ disciples.

“And the congregation of those who believed were of one heart and soul; and not one of them claimed that anything belonging to him was his own, but all things were common property to them.” (Acts 4:32)

The very fact that these consequences are missing in the life of many people who call themselves Christians while denying Jesus by their actions is a hindrance for many people in recognizing the revelation sent through Jesus.

“For the name of God is blasphemed among the gentiles because of you.” (Romans 2:24)

Paul’s criticism of the unbelieving Jews of his time can be just as aptly applied to the pseudo-Christians of today.

Regardless of the many pseudo-Christians, God is nevertheless at work today in all of Jesus’ disciples, in those who put His words into practice in daily obedience.

We would like to invite all Muslims not to be deterred by bad examples but to turn to God’s words, which the Almighty revealed through the prophets and through Jesus, and in this way to get to know God’s will more and more deeply.

“How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! And the children of men take refuge in the shadow of Your wings. They drink their fill of the abundance of Your house; And You give them to drink of the river of Your delights. For with You is the fountain of life; In Your light we see light.” (Psalm 36:7-8)

“I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” (John 10:10b)

  1. “Iman” means “faith”. This differs from the “five pillars of Islam”, which concern the faith of Muslims in practice. The “Six Pillars of Iman” refer to the content of that faith. 
  2. From Hadith, quoted according to M. Hamidullah, Introduction to Islam, § 129, http://muslimcanada.org/ch4hamid.html
  3. M. Hamidullah, Introduction to Islam, § 138; http://muslimcanada.org/ch4hamid.html#angels
  4. acc. to Saheeh International. 
  5. cf. Psalm 119:105 – Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. 
  6. Tenach” is a made-up word composed of the initial letters of the names of the three main parts of Israel’s Holy Scriptures: Torah (law), Nebiim (prophets), Ketubim ([other] scriptures). 
  7. Surah 10 is named after Jonah. 
  8. A part of this papyrus is stored in Cologny in the Bodmer Library. It is called Papyrus Bodmer II. Another part of it called Papyrus Chester Beatty is in Dublin in the Chester Beatty Library. A third part (No. 4274/4298) can be found in Cologne in the “Institut für Altertumskunde”. 
  9. A part of it is in Dublin, in the Chester Beatty Library as Papyrus Chester Beatty II, another part in Ann Arbor, University of Michigan, No. 6238. 
  10. Young Kyu Kim, Biblica, Vol. 69, No. 2, 1988, dates this papyrus as early as the first century. This article can be found at http://www.friktech.com/rel/p46.htm
  11. More about the Gospel of Barnabas at: https://www.islaminstitut.de/en/2004/wurde-das-wahre-evangelium-christi-gefunden/ This link is provided for the reader’s information only. It is a detailed critique with extensive bibliographical references which allow the reader to form his own opinion. 
  12. As a result of recently discovered manuscripts, which actually usually differ only in unimportant ways, we have an even better quality text than in the seventh century. 
  13. The term “son” here and in other passages of the New Testament which speak about Jesus as the son, does not refer to his physical descent, as if the Almighty God had entered into a sexual relationship. The term “son” expresses his spiritual closeness to God. 
  14. A discussion of the question of Jesus’ death on the cross, which is rejected in this passage of the Qur’an, would go beyond the scope of this article. – Jesus’ return is not written expressly in the Qur’an but it is a part of Islamic tradition. 
  15. “It is narrated on the authority of Abu Huraira that the Messenger or Allah (Peace be upon him) observed: I swear by Allah that the son of Mary will certainly descend as a just judge and he would definitely break the cross, and kill swine and abolish Jizya and would leave the young she-camel and no one would endeavour to (collect Zakat on it).” (Sahih Muslim Book 1 Hadith 289 – quoted according to http://muflihun.com/muslim/1/289.) 
  16. Concerning the question whether Jesus predicted the coming of Mohammad see “Whose coming did Jesus predict?“ 
  17. Consequently, we as Christians cannot agree with statements such as are found in Surah 2:25 where the believers are promised “houris”, the women of paradise, as a reward. Jesus said clearly: “…but those who are considered worthy to attain to that age and the resurrection from the dead, neither marry nor are given in marriage; for they cannot even die anymore, because they are like angels, and are sons of God, being sons of the resurrection.” (Luke 20:35-36)
  18. See Surah 4:56 “(As for) those who disbelieve in Our communications, We shall make them enter fire; so oft as their skins are thoroughly burned, We will change them for other skins, that they may taste the chastisement; surely Allah is Mighty, Wise.” A spiritual understanding of this verse, similar to that of Bible passages which speak of fire, seems to be impossible here. 
  19. The main proponents of this false teaching (with varying emphases) are Augustine, Luther and Calvin. 

Wahrer Islam: Wahre Hingabe

Die erste Sure des Koran spricht über das jedem Menschen von Gott ins Herz gelegte Wissen, dass er der Höchste ist, dem allein alles Lob gebührt, und beinhaltet auch eine Bitte um die Führung auf dem rechten Weg:

“Im Namen Gottes, des Erbarmers, des Barmherzigen.
Lob sei Gott, dem Herrn der Welten,
Dem Erbarmer, dem Barmherzigen,
Der Verfügungsgewalt besitzt über den Tag des Gerichtes!
Dir dienen wir, und Dich bitten wir um Hilfe.
Führe uns den geraden Weg,
Den Weg derer, die Du begnadet hast, die nicht dem Zorn verfallen und nicht irregehen.”
(Sūrah 1: Al-Fātihah)

Jeder, der Gott von ganzem Herzen und mit einer aufrichtigen Gesinnung sucht, wird ihn finden. Wir möchten mit den in dieser Abhandlung ausgedrückten Gedanken eine Hilfestellung zur Erkenntnis des geraden Weges geben, so wie ihn Gott durch seine Propheten und durch Jesus gezeigt hat.

Wer lehrt uns den wahren Islam?

“Suchen sie sich etwa eine andere Religion als die Religion Gottes, wo Ihm ergeben ist, was in den Himmeln und auf der Erde ist, ob freiwillig oder widerwillig, und wo sie (alle) zu Ihm zurückgebracht werden? Sprich: Wir glauben an Gott und an das, was auf uns herabgesandt wurde, und an das, was herabgesandt wurde auf Abraham, Ismael, Isaak, Jakob und die Stämme, und an das, was Mose und Jesus und den Propheten von ihrem Herrn zugekommen ist. Wir machen bei keinem von ihnen einen Unterschied. Und wir sind Ihm ergeben.
Wer eine andere Religion als den Islam sucht, von dem wird es nicht angenommen werden. Und im Jenseits gehört er zu den Verlierern.” (Sura 3: Al-`Imran , 83-85)

Dieser Abschnitt aus dem Koran meint mit dem Begriff “Islam” nicht die Zugehörigkeit zu einer bestimmten Religionsgemeinschaft, sondern Hingabe und Gottergebenheit. Es ist der Glaube, den Abraham hatte, Isaak, Jakob, Mose, die Propheten und Jesus, der Sohn der Maria. Wer sich Gott von ganzem Herzen hingeben will, folgt daher dem Beispiel Abrahams und der Propheten, dem Beispiel Jesu von Nazareth. Sie haben sich Gott ganz hingegeben und waren in diesem Sinn die wahren Muslime, die Gott Ergebenen. Durch sie hat der Allmächtige zur Welt gesprochen und seinen Willen und sein Wesen offenbart. Ihrer Hingabe zu folgen ist der wahre Islam, vollkommene Ergebenheit in den Willen des alleinzigen Gottes.

“Wir haben die Tora hinabgesandt, in der Rechtleitung und Licht enthalten sind, damit die Propheten, die gottergeben waren, für die, die Juden sind, (danach) urteilen, […]” (Sura 5: Al-Ma´ida , 44)

“Und Wir ließen nach ihnen Jesus, den Sohn Marias, folgen, damit er bestätige, was von der Tora vor ihm vorhanden war. Und Wir ließen ihm das Evangelium zukommen, das Rechtleitung und Licht enthält und das bestätigt, was von der Tora vor ihm vorhanden war, und als Rechtleitung und Ermahnung für die Gottesfürchtigen.
Die Leute des Evangeliums sollen nach dem urteilen, was Gott darin herabgesandt hat. Und diejenigen, die nicht nach dem urteilen, was Gott herabgesandt hat, das sind die Frevler.” (Sura 5: Al-Ma´ida , 46-47)

“Und als Jesus mit den deutlichen Zeichen kam, sagte er: “Ich komme zu euch mit der Weisheit, und um euch einiges von dem, worüber ihr uneins seid, deutlich zu machen. So fürchtet Gott und gehorcht mir.” (Sura 43: Az-Zuhruf , 63)

Wer sich Gott ergeben will, folgt dem Wort der Thora, der Propheten und den Worten Jesu, der die Thora bestätigte. Ein wahrer Muslim will die ganze Offenbarung Gottes kennenlernen und kommt daher an der Thora, den Propheten und dem Evangelium nicht vorbei. Er gehorcht den Worten Jesu. Nur so eröffnen sich für ihn die Leitung und das Licht des Allmächtigen, wie es auch diese Schriften selbst bezeugen:

“Eine Leuchte für meinen Fuß ist dein Wort, ein Licht für meinen Pfad.” (Psalm 119,105)

“Denn eine Leuchte ist das Gebot und die Weisung ein Licht, und ein Weg zum Leben sind Ermahnungen der Zucht.” (Sprüche 6,23)

“Jesus redete nun wieder zu ihnen und sprach: Ich bin das Licht der Welt; wer mir nachfolgt, wird nicht in der Finsternis wandeln, sondern wird das Licht des Lebens haben.” (Johannes 8,12)

Der Koran bezeugt also einmütig mit den Schriften des Alten und des Neuen Testaments, dass wir in der Thora und im Evangelium das Licht und Weisung finden. Was kann also einen Muslim noch hindern, die ganze Offenbarung Gottes kennenzulernen und sich intensiv dem Studium der Worte der Thora und des Evangeliums zu widmen?

Was heißt Hingabe?

Zu Abraham sprach Gott:

“Ich bin Gott, der Allmächtige. Lebe vor meinem Angesicht und sei untadelig! Und ich will meinen Bund zwischen mir und dir setzen und will dich sehr, sehr mehren.” (Genesis 17,1-2)

Für Abraham bedeutete Hingabe Leben in der Gegenwart Gottes und Streben nach einem untadeligen Leben.

In der Thora finden wir folgendes Gebot:

“Höre Israel: Der HERR ist unser Gott, der HERR allein! Und du sollst den HERRN, deinen Gott, lieben mit deinem ganzen Herzen und mit deiner ganzen Seele und mit deiner ganzen Kraft. Und diese Worte, die ich dir heute gebiete, sollen in deinem Herzen sein […]” (Deuteronomium 6,4-6)

Durch den Propheten Micha sprach Gott:

“Man hat dir mitgeteilt, o Mensch, was gut ist. Und was fordert der HERR von dir, als Recht zu üben und Güte zu lieben und demütig zu gehen mit deinem Gott?” (Micha 6,8)

Jesus bestätigte das Gebot der Thora, indem er es das größte Gebot nannte:

“Und es fragte einer von ihnen, ein Gesetzesgelehrter, und versuchte ihn und sprach: Lehrer, welches ist das größte Gebot im Gesetz? Er aber sprach zu ihm: Du sollst den Herrn, deinen Gott, lieben mit deinem ganzen Herzen und mit deiner ganzen Seele und mit deinem ganzen Verstand. Dies ist das größte und erste Gebot. Das zweite aber ist ihm gleich: Du sollst deinen Nächsten lieben wie dich selbst. An diesen zwei Geboten hängt das ganze Gesetz und die Propheten.” (Matthäus 22,35-40)

Das Leben Jesu war die größte Verwirklichung dieses Gebotes. Die Liebe zu Gott erfüllte ihn durch und durch. Er blieb Gott in allem treu und konnte – im Gegensatz zu allen anderen Menschen – ohne hochmütig zu sein, seinen Gegnern sagen:

“Wer von euch überführt mich einer Sünde?” (Johannes 8,46)

Jesus verwirklichte die Güte und Barmherzigkeit Gottes, was auch im Leben seiner Nachfolger sichtbar war, wie auch der Koran bezeugt:

“Dann ließen Wir nach ihnen unsere Gesandten folgen. Und Wir ließen Jesus, den Sohn Marias, folgen und ihm das Evangelium zukommen. Und Wir setzten in die Herzen derer, die ihm folgten, Mitleid und Barmherzigkeit […]” (Sure 57: Al-Hadid , 27)

Die Bibel beschreibt die Verwirklichung dieser Güte und Barmherzigkeit im Leben der Nachfolger Jesu folgendermaßen:

“Sie verharrten aber in der Lehre der Apostel und in der Gemeinschaft, im Brechen des Brotes und in den Gebeten. […] Alle Gläubiggewordenen aber waren beisammen und hatten alles gemeinsam; und sie verkauften die Güter und die Habe und verteilten sie an alle, je nachdem einer bedürftig war: Täglich verharrten sie einmütig im Tempel und brachen zu Hause das Brot, nahmen Speise mit Jubel und Schlichtheit des Herzens, sie lobten Gott und hatten Gunst beim ganzen Volk […]” (Apostelgeschichte 2,42.44-47)

“Die Menge derer aber, die gläubig geworden, war ein Herz und eine Seele; und auch nicht einer sagte, dass etwas von seiner Habe sein eigen sei, sondern es war ihnen alles gemeinsam.” (Apostelgeschichte 4,32)

Hingabe an Gott bedeutete für die ersten Christen auch Hingabe an die Brüder. Deswegen lebten sie in täglicher Gemeinschaft und teilten ihre Güter miteinander.

“Wenn jemand sagt: Ich liebe Gott, und hasst seinen Bruder, ist er ein Lügner. Denn wer seinen Bruder nicht liebt, den er gesehen hat, kann nicht Gott lieben, den er nicht gesehen hat. Und dieses Gebot haben wir von ihm, dass wer Gott liebt, auch seinen Bruder lieben soll.” (1 Johannes 4,20-21)

Selbst als sich das offizielle Christentum immer mehr der Welt anpasste und den Weg Jesu verließ, gab es noch treue Nachfolger Jesu, die ihrem Gott im täglichen gemeinsamen Lesen der Schrift und Gebet die Treue hielt:

“Sie sind nicht (alle) gleich. Unter den Leuten des Buches gibt es eine aufrechte Gemeinschaft. Sie verlesen die Zeichen Gottes zu (verschiedenen) Nachtzeiten, während sie sich niederwerfen.
Sie glauben an Gott und an den Jüngsten Tag. Sie gebieten das Rechte und verbieten das Verwerfliche und eilen zu den guten Dingen um die Wette. Sie gehören zu den Rechtschaffenen.” (Sure 3: Al- ´Imran 113-114)

Die “fünf Säulen” des Islam

Nach der islamischen Tradition verwirklicht sich der Islam, die Hingabe an Gott, vor allem in der Verwirklichung der “fünf Säulen”:

Ibn ‘Umar […] sagte:
Der Gesandte Allahs, […] , sagte:
“Der Islam wurde auf fünf (Tragpfeilern) gebaut:
1. dem Zeugnis, dass kein Gott da ist außer Allah, und dass Muhammad der Gesandte Allahs ist,
2. dem Verrichten des Gebets,
3. dem Entrichten der Zakah,
5. der Pilgerfahrt
und 4. dem Fasten im (Monat) Ramadan1.”

Was hat uns Gott durch Jesus zu diesen fünf Punkten verkündet, und welche Entsprechungen finden wir im Leben der ersten Christen dazu?

Zu 1. Das Bekenntnis zur Einheit und Einzigkeit Gottes ist die bleibende Grundlage der Lehre Jesu und seiner Jünger. Es gibt keinen anderen Gott außer dem einen und einzigen, der das Universum geschaffen hat, sich Abraham, Isaak und Jakob und allen Propheten geoffenbart hat und der die Menschen am Jüngsten Tage richten wird. Niemals hat ein Jünger Jesu Jesus als Gott neben Gott angenommen (wie Sure 5,116 suggeriert). Wir glauben an den

“seligen und alleinigen Machthaber, den König der Könige und Herren der Herren, der allein Unsterblichkeit hat und ein unzugängliches Licht bewohnt, den keiner der Menschen gesehen hat und auch nicht sehen kann, dem Ehre und ewige Macht gebührt.” (1 Timotheus 6,15-16)

Das Bekenntnis zur Einheit und Einzigkeit Gottes erfolgt unter Christen aber nicht durch rituelle Rezitation, sondern durch ein Leben nach seinen Geboten und durch das beständige Bemühen, andere zur Erkenntnis Gottes und zu einem Leben nach seinem Willen zu führen.

Das Bekenntnis zum Propheten Muhammad war allen Muslimen (= Gott ergebenen Menschen) von Abraham bis ins 7. Jahrhundert nach Christus hinein unbekannt, da Muhammad ja erst später kam. Seit Jesus war aber den Gläubigen klar, dass die Offenbarung Gottes in Jesus ihren abschließenden Höhepunkt erfahren hat und keine neue Offenbarung mehr zu erwarten ist.

“Nachdem Gott vielfältig und auf vielerlei Weise ehemals zu den Vätern geredet hat in den Propheten, hat er am Ende dieser Tage zu uns geredet im Sohn, […]” (Hebräer 1,1-2a)

Jesus hat seinen Jüngern verheißen, dass er ihnen den Heiligen Geist senden werde:

“Der Beistand aber, der Heilige Geist, den der Vater senden wird in meinem Namen, der wird euch alles lehren und euch an alles erinnern, was ich euch gesagt habe.” (Johannes 14,26)

Diese Verheißung hat Jesus an seinen Jüngern ca. 50 Tage später erfüllt. Der Heilige Geist hat die Jünger zu einem tieferen Verständnis der Worte Jesu geführt, an die er sie erinnert hat2.

Zu 2. Das Gebet ist die tägliche Grundlage des geistlichen Lebens jedes Gläubigen.

“Seid um nichts besorgt, sondern in allem sollen durch Gebet und Flehen mit Danksagung eure Anliegen vor Gott kundwerden!” (Philipper 4,6)

“[…] Mit allem Gebet und Flehen betet zu jeder Zeit im Geist und wachet hierzu in allem Anhalten und Flehen für alle Heiligen!3(Epheser 6,18)

Jesus selbst lebte aus dem Gebet. Immer wieder suchte er die Nähe seines Vaters:

“Und es geschah in diesen Tagen, dass er auf den Berg hinausging, um zu beten; und er verbrachte die Nacht im Gebet zu Gott.” (Lukas 6,12)

Seine Jünger folgten seinem Beispiel:

“Diese alle verharrten einmütig im Gebet […]” (Apostelgeschichte 1,14)

“Sie verharrten aber in der Lehre der Apostel und in der Gemeinschaft, im Brechen des Brotes und in den Gebeten […]” (Apostelgeschichte 2,42)

Für die ersten und alle späteren Christen war das Gebet Basis und Ausdruck der bleibenden Gemeinschaft mit Gott. Geistliches Leben bedeutet Beziehung zu Gott, der uns liebt. Durch unser Gebet erwidern wir unsere Liebe zu ihm. Deswegen lässt sich dieses Gebet nicht in die starren Formen eines Rituals pressen. Liebe überwindet jedes Ritual. Das Gebet Jesu und das Gebet seiner Nachfolger ist nicht an bestimmte Formen, Orte, Zeiten und Gebetsrichtungen gebunden. Der ewige Gott umgibt uns beständig. Seine Liebe zu preisen ist Inhalt all unserer Worte und unseres ganzen Lebens.

Zu 3. Christen kennen keine Armensteuer. Das Alte Testament kannte verschiedene Regelungen für die Versorgung der Armen. So sollte etwa jedes dritte Jahr der gesamte Zehnte den Armen zur Verfügung stehen (Deuteronomium 14,28-29). Grundsätzlich galt:

“Deinem Bruder, deinem Elenden und deinem Armen in deinem Land sollst du deine Hand weit öffnen!” (Deuteronomium 15,11)

Die Gläubigen des Neuen Testaments gingen über diese Regelung noch weit hinaus. Die Liebe Gottes, die ihre Herzen erfüllte, drängte sie, ihren armen Brüdern und Schwestern nicht nur Almosen zu geben, sondern mit ihnen zu teilen:

“Alle Gläubiggewordenen aber waren beisammen und hatten alles gemeinsam; und sie verkauften die Güter und die Habe und verteilten sie an alle, je nachdem einer bedürftig war.” (Apostelgeschichte 2,44-45)

“Denn es war auch keiner bedürftig unter ihnen, denn so viele Besitzer von Äckern oder Häusern waren, verkauften sie und brachten den Preis des Verkauften und legten ihn nieder zu den Füßen der Apostel; es wurde aber jedem zugeteilt, so wie einer Bedürfnis hatte.” (Apostelgeschichte 4,34-35)

“In der jetzigen Zeit diene euer Überfluss dem Mangel jener, damit auch der Überfluss jener für euren Mangel diene, damit Gleichheit entstehe.” (2 Korinther 8,14)

Wenn daher verschiedene “christliche” Gruppen späterer Zeit den Zehnten des Alten Testaments wieder eingeführt haben, so haben sie das Niveau des Neuen Testaments verlassen. Ebenso ist auch die Zakat, so positiv sie sich auch in verschiedenen islamischen Völkern ausgewirkt haben mag, ein Rückschritt im Vergleich zum Maß der Hingabe, die wir im Neuen Testament finden. Die Hingabe des Christen wird von der Liebe geleitet und lässt sich nicht durch Prozentsätze regulieren.

Zu 4. Fasten ist im Neuen Testament nicht durch ein Gesetz geregelt. Jesus widersprach dem offen zur Schau getragenen Fasten der Pharisäer:

“Wenn ihr aber fastet, so seht nicht düster aus wie die Heuchler! Denn sie verstellen ihre Gesichter, damit sie den Menschen als Fastende erscheinen. Wahrlich, ich sage euch, sie haben ihren Lohn dahin. Wenn du aber fastest, so salbe dein Haupt und wasche dein Gesicht, damit du nicht den Menschen als ein Fastender erscheinst, sondern deinem Vater, der im Verborgenen ist! Und dein Vater, der im Verborgenen sieht, wird dir vergelten.” (Matthäus 6,16-18)

Gott will unsere ganze Hingabe und Liebe, die jeden Tag, das ganze Jahr lang für Ihn und für den Dienst an den Brüdern da ist. Diese Hingabe bedeutet auch Disziplin. Der Geist des Christen steht über seinem Körper und überwindet dessen Begierden. Wir genießen unsere Speisen mit Dankbarkeit, in dem Bewusstsein, auch verzichten zu können, wenn es die uns von Gott gegebenen Aufgaben erfordern. Diese Disziplin bestimmt unser Leben unabhängig von der Tages- und Jahreszeit. Suchtgifte (wie Nikotin) haben überdies ohnehin keinen Platz im Leben des Christen.

“Oder wisst ihr nicht, dass euer Leib ein Tempel des Heiligen Geistes in euch ist, den ihr von Gott habt, und dass ihr nicht euch selbst gehört? Denn ihr seid um einen Preis erkauft worden. Verherrlicht nun Gott mit eurem Leib!” (1 Korinther 6,19-20)

Zu 5. Für die Gläubigen des Alten Testaments gab es die Vorschrift, dreimal im Jahr nach Jerusalem zu pilgern:

“Dreimal im Jahr soll alles bei dir, was männlich ist, vor dem HERRN, deinem Gott, erscheinen an der Stätte, die er erwählen wird: am Fest der ungesäuerten Brote und am Fest der Wochen und am Fest der Laubhütten. Und man soll nicht mit leeren Händen vor dem HERRN erscheinen: jeder nach dem, was seine Hand geben kann, nach dem Segen des HERRN, deines Gottes, den er dir gegeben hat.” (Deuteronomium 16,16-17)

Zur Zeit Jesu gab es zwischen den Juden und den Samaritern Streit darüber, wo denn diese Stätte sei, “die der Herr erwählen wird”. Die Juden pilgerten nach Jerusalem, für die Samariter war der Berg Garizim der Berg der Anbetung Gottes.

Jesus gab einerseits den Juden recht, ging aber dann noch weiter. Er sprach zu einer Samariterin:

“Frau, glaube mir, es kommt die Stunde, da ihr weder auf diesem Berg noch in Jerusalem den Vater anbeten werdet […] Es kommt aber die Stunde und ist jetzt, da die wahren Anbeter den Vater im Geist und Wahrheit anbeten werden; denn auch der Vater sucht solche Anbeter. Gott ist Geist, und die ihn anbeten, müssen in Geist und Wahrheit anbeten.” (Johannes 4,21-24)

Deswegen kennen Christen keinen heiligen Ort und keine heiligen Zeiten. Vielmehr ist jeder Ort und jede Zeit durch die Gegenwart des Allmächtigen geheiligt. Wir verstehen unser ganzes Leben als eine Pilgerfahrt zum himmlischen Jerusalem.

“[…] sondern ihr seid gekommen zum Berg Zion und zur Stadt des lebendigen Gottes, dem himmlischen Jerusalem; und zu Myriaden von Engeln, einer Festversammlung; und zu der Gemeinde der Erstgeborenen, die in den Himmeln angeschrieben sind; und zu Gott, dem Richter aller; und zu den Geistern der vollendeten Gerechten […]” (Hebräer 12,22-23)

Mehr zum Ort der Anbetung Gottes ist hier zu finden.

In der näheren Betrachtung dieser “fünf Säulen” zeigt sich also, dass Jesus keine genauen Regeln zu verschiedenen religiösen Übungen gelehrt hat, dass er uns aber die Liebe gebracht hat, die jedes religiöse Regelwerk sprengt und uns zur vollkommenen Hingabe an den ewigen Gott im Dienst an den Gläubigen führt, hin zu einem Islam, zu einer wahren Ergebenheit in den Willen Gottes, die uns für alle Ewigkeit mit dem Glück der Gemeinschaft mit unserem Schöpfer erfüllen wird. Der Weg, den Jesus uns gezeigt und gelehrt hat, der Weg, der Jesus selber ist, ist der wahre Islam. Wir laden alle, die sich Muslime nennen, ein, diesen Weg zu gehen, und so die wahre Hingabe zu Gott zu finden und zu leben.

“Und Wir haben vor dir nur Männer gesandt, denen Wir Offenbarungen eingegeben haben. So fragt die Besitzer der Ermahnung, wenn ihr nicht Bescheid wisst.” (Sure 16: An-Nahl 43)

“Zu jener Zeit begann Jesus und sprach:
Ich preise dich Vater, Herr des Himmels und der Erde, dass du dies vor Weisen und Verständigen
verborgen und es Unmündigen geoffenbart hast. Ja, Vater, denn so war es wohlgefällig vor dir.
Alles ist mir übergeben worden von meinem Vater; und niemand erkennt den Sohn als nur der Vater,
noch erkennt jemand den Vater als nur der Sohn, und der, dem der Sohn ihn offenbaren will.
Kommt her zu mir, alle ihr Mühseligen und Beladenen! Und ich werde euch Ruhe geben.
Nehmt auf euch mein Joch, und lernt von mir! Denn ich bin sanftmütig und von Herzen demütig,
und ihr werdet Ruhe finden für eure Seelen; denn mein Joch ist sanft, und meine Last ist leicht.”
(Matthäus 11,25-30)

PS: Wenn wir in dieser Abhandlung den Begriff “Christ” verwendet haben, dann sind damit ausschließlich Menschen gemeint, die mit ihrem ganzen Leben den Weg Jesu gehen. Wir weisen ausdrücklich darauf hin, dass unsere von Sünden geprägte westliche Konsumgesellschaft auf keinen Fall “christlich” genannt werden darf, und dass auch alle allgemein als “christliche Kirchen” anerkannten Organisationen vom biblischen Christentum weit entfernt sind.

  1. Nach einer von Al-Buhari überlieferten Hadith; zitiert nach: Muhammad Ibn Ahmad Ibn Rassoul, Die fünf Säulen des Islam, 3. Auflage, Köln 1999; ISBN: 3-8217-0189-7, Seite 3; In dieser Hadith werden die vierte und fünfte Säule nicht in der heute üblichen Reihenfolge angeführt. 
  2. Der Begriff „erinnern“ setzt voraus, dass die „Erinnerten“ Augenzeugen Jesu sein mussten. Andere konnte der Geist nicht an die Worte erinnern. Eine Umdeutung dieser Verheißung Jesu auf Muhammad ist dadurch von vornherein ausgeschlossen. 
  3. Im Neuen Testament wird der Begriff „Heiliger“ nicht im römisch-katholischen Sinn verwendet. Im Neuen Testament werden alle Christen als Heilige bezeichnet, weil jeder, der Jesus nachfolgt, sich von ihm heiligen lässt.