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Knowing the 'Other' - Especially the Status of Jesus in Islam!

In the Name of God, the Most Compassionate, the Most Merciful

Knowing one another is exactly what we did during the Hispanic Heritage Month Festival. WHY-Islam had set up a stall. I was volunteering masha'Allah. We had this really great question list - sort of a quiz on Islam. So we (me and my two assistants - the sons of another attendee) visited the various stalls at the festival and checked how much everyone knew about Islam. The average score was 8 or above masha'Allah.

Some booth organizers were 'born Muslims'. Let me correct this statement. EVERY human is a born Muslim. That is the exact reason why kids born to non-Muslims and Muslims who die before reaching the age, where they choose to practice another religion, will enter heaven. In heaven, they will live with Prophet Abraham (peace be upon him) and fly around as the Birds of Paradise. Those who live to practice another faith will of course not die as Muslims unless they come back to it. Some non-Muslims answered all questions right - even the tricky ones such as whether Islam thinks Jesus had a virgin birth or not. He did have a virgin birth just like Prophet Adam did.

Indeed, the example of Jesus in the sight of Allah is like that of Adam. He created him from dust, then said to him, “Be!” And he was! [Quran 3:59]

Just like Adam was brought forward without a father, so could Isa be brought without an earthly father - Allah tells us in Quran 3:59. If Christians believe in one more Prophet (Muhammad - peace be upon him), and an extra book (the Quran), we are the same or very similar.

What the Christians found out the day of the festival - well some knew already:

1) Jesus is one of the beloved Prophets of Islam

And We did certainly give Moses the Scripture [i.e., the Torah] and followed up after him with messengers. And We gave Jesus, the son of Mary, clear proofs and supported him with the Pure Spirit [i.e., the angel Gabriel]. But is it [not] that every time a messenger came to you, [O Children of Israel], with what your souls did not desire, you were arrogant? And a party [of messengers] you denied and another party you killed. [Quran 2:87]

2) Muslims believe in the second coming of Jesus. He will come towards the End Times as Just Ruler.

Narrated Abu Huraira:
Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said, "The Hour will not be established until the son of Mary (i.e. Jesus) descends amongst you as a just ruler, he will break the cross, kill the pigs, and abolish the Jizya tax. Money will be in abundance so that nobody will accept it (as charitable gifts). [Sahih Bukhari 2476]

3) In Islam, Jesus didn't die on the cross but he ascended to heaven. In Christianity, he died and was resurrected.

[Mention] when Allāh said, "O Jesus, indeed I will take you and raise you to Myself and purify [i.e., free] you from those who disbelieve and make those who follow you [in submission to Allāh alone] superior to those who disbelieve until the Day of Resurrection. Then to Me is your return, and I will judge between you concerning that in which you used to differ. [Quran 3:55]

4) Jesus (alaihisalam) is in heaven - Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) met him when he went on the journey of Miraj. Muhammad met many other Prophets too.

Narrated Ibn `Abbas:
The Prophet (ﷺ) said, "I saw Moses, Jesus and Abraham (on the night of my Ascension to the heavens). Jesus was of red complexion, curly hair and a broad chest. Moses was of brown complexion, straight hair and tall stature as if he was from the people of Az-Zutt." [Bukhari 3438]

5) Reiterating, Jesus has a virgin birth.

"Such is Allāh; He creates what He wills. When He decrees a matter, He only says to it, 'Be,' and it is.[Quran 3:47]
Mary exclaimed: "I surely take refuge from you with the Most Compassionate Lord, if you are at all God-fearing." He said: "I am just a message-bearer of your Lord, I have come to grant you a most pure boy." Mary said: "How can a boy be born to me when no man has even touched me, nor have I ever been unchaste?"The angel said: "Thus shall it be. Your Lord says: 'It is easy for Me; and We shall do so in order to make him a Sign for mankind and a mercy from Us. This has been decreed.' "[Conversation beseem Mary and Gabriel - Quran 19:18-21]

6) Trinity is a wrong doctrine. Isa Ibn Maryam (Jesus son of Mary) is an esteemed Prophet of God and NOT the son of God.

O People of the Scripture, do not commit excess in your religion or say about Allāh except the truth. The Messiah, Jesus the son of Mary, was but a messenger of Allāh and His word which He directed to Mary and a soul [created at a command] from Him. So believe in Allāh and His messengers. And do not say, "Three"; desist - it is better for you. Indeed, Allāh is but one God. Exalted is He above having a son. To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth. And sufficient is Allāh as Disposer of affairs. [Quran 4:17

May we all guided be to Sirat ul Mutaqeem. Ameen.

Picture credits: Back of my car :)



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