Response to Saifullah

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Dr. M S M Saifullah

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May 21, 1999, 3:00:00 AM5/21/99
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"sam shamoun" <sam_s...@hotmail.com> writes:

Assalamu-alaikum wa rahamatullahi wa barakatuhu:

I will keep this post short, inshallah.

>> Anyway, the crux of the argument here is that Allah says in the Qur'an that
>> the Christians forgot the good part of the message, i.e., the Gospel which
>> they have is not fully complete. Well, if they forgot the good part of the
>> message then what do they have with them? The rest of it + some additions
>> to it. That would be my argument. So, whether one calls it 'corruption' or
>> 'additions' or whatever it would still be that the Qur'an nowhere defends
>> the integrity of the Gospels that the Christian have.
>>
>> I would be surely checking the tafsirs on this issue, inshallah.
>
>To forget a part does not imply corruption of the text. Furthermore,
>this verse does not imply that all Christians forgot since other
>verses suggest that there were those godly Jewish and Christian men
>who did read and follow the book:

Well, Shamoun has simply stopped for answering the question of what is left
behind when the Jews and Christians have forgotton.

His first argument that the Qur'an says that the Jews and the Christians
have the scriptures which were revealed to them. When it was shown to him
the following verses:

But because of their breach of their covenant, We cursed them, and made
their hearts grow hard; they change the words from their (right) places and
forget a good part of the message that was sent them, nor wilt thou cease
to find them- barring a few - ever bent on (new) deceits: but forgive them,
and overlook (their misdeeds): for Allah loveth those who are kind. From
those, too, who call themselves Christians, We did take a covenant, but
they forgot a good part of the message that was sent them: so we estranged
them, with enmity and hatred between the one and the other, to the day of
judgment. And soon will Allah show them what it is they have done. [5:13-14]

he nows says that it does not imply all the Christians have forgotton the
message. Well, the Qur'an does not even imply that the message which the
Jews and the Christians have in their hands is fully original, as revealed.
Further, if one reads the following passage after the above mentioned
verses it is clear that the Qur'an is in fact correcting what the People of
the Book used to hide.

O people of the Book! There hath come to you our Messenger, revealing to
you much that ye used to hide in the Book, and passing over much (that is
now unnecessary): There hath come to you from Allah a (new) light and a
perspicuous
Book [5:15]

And if one considers "so we estranged them, with enmity and hatred between
the one and the other", the history of Christianity is an ample proof of
how butchering was carried out by various groups of Christians in the past.
In fact the history is littered with it!

Further Shamoun says:

>Sura 3:113-114:
>
> "Not all of them are alike. Some of the People of the Book are
> an upright people. THEY RECITE THE SIGNS (OR VERSES) OF GOD
> IN THE NIGHT SEASON and they bow down worshipping. They believe
> in God and the last day. They command what is just, and forbid
> what is wrong and they hasten in good works, and they are of
> the righteous."
>
>How could they recite the signs if all Christians and Jews had
>forgotten them?

Well, the Qur'an nowhere claims that the Jews and Christians do not have
any message left with them. Whatever they have they diligently recite it.
And whatever message is left, it is abrogated by the Qur'an.

If one really examines the verses in 3:113-114 in the light of the
following verses:

They do blaspheme who say: "Allah is Christ the son of Mary." But said
Christ: "O Children of Israel! worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord."
Whoever joins other gods with Allah,- Allah will forbid him the garden, and
the Fire will be his abode. There will for the wrong-doers be no one to
help. They do blaspheme who say: Allah is one of three in a Trinity: for
there is no god except One Allah. If they desist not from their word (of
blasphemy), verily a grievous penalty will befall the blasphemers among
them. [Qur'an 5:72-73]

It is pretty clear that the trinitarian Christians are the one who are
blasphemers. They definitely do not recite the verses of the God and
instead commit shirk.

And Allah knows best.

--

Dr. M S M Saifullah NTT Basic Research Laboratories
'Islamic Awareness' http://salam.muslimsonline.com/~islamawe/


sam shamoun

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May 27, 1999, 3:00:00 AM5/27/99
to

Status: In article <7i3oen$jem$1...@waltz.rahul.net>, "Dr. M S M Saifullah"
<sa...@aecl.ntt.co.jp> stated:

Again, nothing in these verses implies corruption to the text
of scripture. In fact the opposite is true since S. 5:15 states
that the Quran reveals much of what is hidden in the Book. The
fact that it is in the Book argues that nothing is lost, but
rather the Judeo-Christian communities are accused of simply
withholding info that is in the text. Further evidence for
this premise can be found in the following citation:

"O Children of Israel! call to mind The (special) favour which
I bestowed Upon you, AND FULFILL YOUR COVENANT WITH ME, as I
fulfill My Covenant With you, and fear none but Me. And believe
in what I reveal, CONFIRMING THE REVELATION WHICH IS WITH YOU,
And be not the first to reject Faith therein, nor sell My Signs
For a samll price; and fear Me, and Me alone. And cover not
Truth With falsehood, nor conceal the Truth WHEN YE KNOW (WHAT
IT IS)." S. 2:40-42

How could they fulfill their covenant and know the truth if their
scripture had been corrupted? Saif also says the Quran does not
imply that the message with the Judeo-Christian communities is
fully original, remaining as it was. I guess he forgot the verses
where it indicates the Reminder that was sent down, which included
the books of Moses and others, which was in the hands of the
Jews and Christians of Muhammad's time would be preserved from
corruption. This clearly implies that the orignal message is
preserved. (cf. S. 15:9; 16:43; 21:7, 48, 105; 40:53-54)

Further substantiation can be found in these verses:

"And in their footsteps We sent Jesus the son of Mary, confirming
the TORAH that had come before him; We sent the Gospel; therein
was Guidance and Light, And confirmation of the TORAH That had
come before him; a Guidance and an Admonition To those who fear
God. Let the People of the GOSPEL JUDGE BY WHAT GOD HATH REVEALED
THEREIN. IF ANY DO FAIL TO JUDGE BY (THE LIGHT OF) WHAT GOD HATH
REVEALED, THEY ARE (NO BETTER THAN) THOSE WHO REBEL." S. 5:46-47

This passage affirms that Jesus' Gospel was available at the time
of Muhammad for the Christians to follow. Furthermore, Jesus
confirmed the Torah available at his time as being substantially
the same as the one originally revealed to Moses. All one has to
do is read the Gospel and see what that Law is, i.e. the very one
recorded for us in the Hebrew Scriptures.

"We did indeed aforetime give the Book to Moses: Be not then
in doubt of its REACHING (THEE): And we made it a guide to
the Children of Israel." S. 32:23

Muhammad is to have no doubt that Moses' Book has reached him.
Yet, unfortunatley Saifullah does doubt what te Quran confirms.

"Say, O People of the Book! You are not (founded) on anything
UNTIL you PERFORM the TORAH and the GOSPEL, and what was
revealed to you from your Lord." S. 5:71

How could they perform the Torah and the Gospel if it had been
corrupted? It will not do to say that this must be performed
according to what had been revealed to Muhammad, since the Quran
was to confirm the message, not contradict it. More on this shortly.

"But when the truth has come to them from Us, they say:
`why is he not given the like of what was given to Moses?'
Did they not disbelieve in that which was given to Moses
before? They say: `Two kinds of magic (the Torah and the
Quran) each helping the other!' And they say: `Verily! In
both we are disbelievers.' Say (to them, O Muhammad):
`Then bring a Book from Allah, which is a better guide
than these TWO (the Torah and the Quran), that I may
follow it, if you are truthful.'" S. 28:48-49

Muhammad defends the integrity of both the Torah and the Quran.
But if the Torah was corrupt, this would have been deception
on Muhammad's part to verify corrupt scriptures.

In summary, there is no conclusive verse in the Quran indicating
the text of Scripture has been corrupted. Instead, one finds that
the Quran affirms both the authority and preservation of the
Biblical text.

> And if one considers "so we estranged them, with enmity and hatred between
> the one and the other", the history of Christianity is an ample proof of
> how butchering was carried out by various groups of Christians in the past.
> In fact the history is littered with it!

This is nothing more than a red herring since we would have
a field day with the Muslim atrocities committed throughout
the centuries. Since the subject is the Bible and the Quran,
not religious wars, I'll discard the smokescreen used by
Saifullah to evade the real issues.

Further, if one does consider the following passages one will
clearly get a different picture from the one presented by Saif:

"Behold! God said: 'O Jesus! I will raise thee to Myself
And clear thee (of the falsehoods) Of those who blaspheme;
I will make those Who follow thee superior To those who
reject faith TO THE DAY OF RESURRECTION; Then shall ye
all return unto Me, And I will judge between you of the
matters Wherein ye dispute." S. 3:55

"O ye who believe! Be ye helpers of Allah: As said Jesus
the son of Mary to the Disciples, "Who will be my helpers
to (the work of) Allah?" Said the disciples, "We are Allah's
helpers!" then a portion of the Children of Israel believed,
and a portion disbelieved: But We gave power to those who
believed, against their enemies, and they became the ones
that prevailed." S. 61:14

These verses state that the true believers would prevail, and
this till the day of resurrection. Since the resurrection day
has not occured, the Christianity which prevailed is the one
that is true. The form of Christianity which has prevailed is
Trinitarianism, an implication which does not help Saifullah
at all.

Furthermore, to say that the Christians fought each other would
imply that the Bible is corrupt would prove that the Quran is
corrupt as well since we have Muslims of different sects fighting
each other!


> Further Shamoun says:
>
> >Sura 3:113-114:
> >
> > "Not all of them are alike. Some of the People of the Book are
> > an upright people. THEY RECITE THE SIGNS (OR VERSES) OF GOD
> > IN THE NIGHT SEASON and they bow down worshipping. They believe
> > in God and the last day. They command what is just, and forbid
> > what is wrong and they hasten in good works, and they are of
> > the righteous."
> >
> >How could they recite the signs if all Christians and Jews had
> >forgotten them?
>
> Well, the Qur'an nowhere claims that the Jews and Christians do not have
> any message left with them. Whatever they have they diligently recite it.
> And whatever message is left, it is abrogated by the Qur'an.

We agree in that the Quran does not deny that the Jews and
Christians did not have any message left, since it affirms that
all of it (i.e. the message given to the Jews and Christians)
remained intact. Whether it has been abrogated or not is a
different discussion.

> If one really examines the verses in 3:113-114 in the light of the
> following verses:
>
> They do blaspheme who say: "Allah is Christ the son of Mary." But said
> Christ: "O Children of Israel! worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord."
> Whoever joins other gods with Allah,- Allah will forbid him the garden, and
> the Fire will be his abode. There will for the wrong-doers be no one to
> help. They do blaspheme who say: Allah is one of three in a Trinity: for
> there is no god except One Allah. If they desist not from their word (of
> blasphemy), verily a grievous penalty will befall the blasphemers among
> them. [Qur'an 5:72-73]
>
> It is pretty clear that the trinitarian Christians are the one who are
> blasphemers. They definitely do not recite the verses of the God and
> instead commit shirk.

> And Allah knows best.

Several responses are in order. First, since this verse does not
mention the text of the Bible but rather the belief of Christians.
Are you saying that the Biblical text does indeed teach the deity
of Christ as well as the Trinity seeing that you use this verse
to debunk the text? If not, then this verse has nothing to do
with the arguments you are trying to make against the Judeo-Christian
text, so your point is invalid.

Secondly, this is precisley why I cannot become a Muslim since
in the one hand the Quran confirms the preservation and authority
of the Bible, while at the same time it contradicts the very heart
of its teachings. This indicates the revealer of the Quran was
not the Omniscient God, but a finite creature who was ignorant
of the true contents of the Bible.

Thirdly, do care to inform your readers that the word Trinity is
not in the Arabic, since the Quran has an incorrect view of what
the Trinity actually is. That is why this translation tries to
obscure this fact by inserting the word "Trinity" where it is not
to be found.

Finally, God does know best and he has revealed it to us in the
Bible; a fact which the Quran does not argue against.

Sam

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