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Home » Aramaic » 91.7 % of the Qur’an in First Century AH vs 0 % of the Bible in First Century AD

91.7 % of the Qur’an in First Century AH vs 0 % of the Bible in First Century AD

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Keeping aside the oral tradition of the Qur’an of which the Bible does not have in Greek , let alone in Aramaic ( the language which Jesus spoke); how does the textual integrity of the surviving manuscripts of each respective book compare?

Just considering the first hundred years of each respective calendar (the Islamic Calendar vs the Christian Calendar), we find that within the early first century the Muslims can boast a 91.7 % completion rate . As for the Christians they do not have a Biblical fragment until the second century, and even then it is the size of a credit card. Moreover just based on manuscripts, it would take more than 300 years to get a complete Bible.

References

http://www.islamic-awareness.org/Quran/Text/Mss/hijazi.html

http://www.islamic-awareness.org/Quran/Text/Mss/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biblical_manuscript

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_New_Testament_papyri

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79 Comments

  1. Waghlis says:

    Thank you for your efforts.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for your invitation to continue our conversation. I’ve read quite a few of your posts and this one was the one I most wanted to comment on because of the content itself and because it relates to our previous conversation on Dan Wallace’s website.

    Before continuing, I must ask what your purpose is and do you care about truth or do you just want to go to any lengths to tear down Christianity? I ask this because to have a worthwhile conversation, we must get beyond popular talking points and superficial understandings. I don’t want to waste your time or my time if there is no willingness to submit to what is reasonable.

    As for this article, I am curious as to what it is supposed to prove. The Quran was written about 600 years after the Bible on more durable material so of course there are more early manuscripts of it. On top of that, the early copies of the Bible were passed around and copied over and over, across a large area, so we wouldn’t expect them to have survived. Moreover, the earliest manuscript, although written in the second century, could be within 100 years of the resurrection and almost certainly within 100 years of when it was written. So by your own dating practices for the Quran, this would count as a first century fragment. There is also a recently found fragment of Mark that likely dates to the 80s or 90s AD (Dan Wallace has released some info on this). More information on it should be published this year.

    Regardless, how does this impact the reliability of the NT? We have several reasons to believe that what was recorded was written within 60 years of the resurrection and is reliable such as writings of the early church leaders and archaeological evidence. Even if we take the position that the whole of the NT wasn’t completed until than 300 years later, that is still 300 years more reliable than what the Quran says about the events of the NT.

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    • Thank you for continuing the conversation.

      I pray to God, that He guides us to the Truth, whatever it might be, inshAllah !’

      Hopefully that statement will dispel any suspicion you have, that I may be debating for the ‘sake of winning’. Rather I am trying to come to a conclusion about the truth as it says in Isaiah 1:18 “Come let us reason together”.

      Just to address a few points you have made:

      (1) “As for this article, I am curious as to what it is supposed to prove. ”

      Trying to compare the textual integrity of the Qur’an vs the Bible.
      For a religious tradition that (from my understanding) has been transmitted solely through written statements and not oral traditions(which the Qur’an has), we really need to investigate this and reflect on it.

      (2) “The Quran was written about 600 years after the Bible on more durable material so of course there are more early manuscripts of it. ”

      For whatever reasons, the fact remains the textual integrity of the Qur’an is far superior. There may be “excuses” as to why that is, but the fact does remain.

      (3) On top of that, the early copies of the Bible were passed around and copied over and over, across a large area, so we wouldn’t expect them to have survived.

      You make it seem there was a printing press in existence at that time. Also very few Christians were literate at that time as well as after , that is a fact. So having copies and copies of the text would be a moot point.

      Moreover the POINT you are making, would imply that there SHOULD be manuscripts in the first century because there are copies and copies of them across a large area. Therefore, shouldn’t it be easier to find more manuscripts? Perhaps I have totally misunderstood the point you are making?

      (4) Moreover, the earliest manuscript, although written in the second century, could be within 100 years of the resurrection and almost certainly within 100 years of when it was written.

      I think we should define this manuscript as a fragment, it gives the false impression that you have pages upon pages. P52 is the size of a credit card.

      https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/05/22/25000-new-testament-manuscripts-big-deal/

      (5) . There is also a recently found fragment of Mark that likely dates to the 80s or 90s AD (Dan Wallace has released some info on this). More information on it should be published this year.

      The ‘Mummy” fragment has yet to be published, and it has been more than 5 years. So bringing up that point would be null and void. Not to mention, “every year” it is claimed that it will be published, but that is a side point.

      (6) We have several reasons to believe that what was recorded was written within 60 years of the resurrection and is reliable such as writings of the early church leaders and archaeological evidence.

      “is reliable such as writings of the early church leaders”

      The writings of the Church leaders are not that reliable in the first place.

      https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/05/25/can-the-new-testament-be-reconstructed-from-the-writings-of-the-church-fathers-muslims-answer/#comment-513

      Moreover I would be curious if you could elaborate on that statement, or perhaps refer me to some reference material.

      (7) Even if we take the position that the whole of the NT wasn’t completed until than 300 years later, that is still 300 years more reliable than what the Quran says about the events of the NT.

      With all due respect, your line of reasoning is flawed. Both accounts have come after the fact. Admittedly, way after the fact.

      However, where the Qur’an and the NT differ is that the Qur’an claims the account is being set-straight from God . And we know we have this revelation from God, both orally and textually from the time of the Prophet.

      NOW, if the Bible claimed to be a revelation from the year 300 setting the record straight from God, then you would have a point, because both are claiming essentially the same thing, but in different centuries.

      HOWEVER, that is not being claimed with the NT in year 300. What is being claimed is that this is a DIRECT account from Day 1.
      Then we have to question whether that account can be trusted in the first place?

      ———————————————————————-

      That concludes my “analysis of your arguments”. If i have made a mistake or misunderstood your point, please bring it up. I don’t intend to make this a rebuttal , counter-rebuttal , counter -counter rebuttal….you know what i mean. So maybe after two rebuttals , we will agree to disagree? lol.

      That being said, I wanted to have an agreement on one point , if you don’t mind. Would you agree with me that you don”t have a NT until the 4th century even if you took all the manuscripts and/or Church Father quotations from the first to third century. Would you agree with that statement?

      Liked by 1 person

    • Not to bring up the past, but where is this First-Century Mark?
      Ehrman is claiming that it seems not to be authentic? Is this true?

      Like

  3. lol Sorry Jay, it seemed i replied to the general and not to you, sorry if it seemed like i neglected your reply.

    Like

    • Sorry for the delayed response and thank you for the reminder. Life kind of got in the way these past few days. By the way, do you have a name I can use to refer to you. Archivesislam just doesn’t seem very personal.

      I can tell that you are quite knowledgeable in this area so I am very much looking forward to having this discussion with you. I’ve never had a chance to talk religion with a Muslim. I want this to be a valuable experience, so I think it’s best to go slowly, and try to keep our responses short and direct.

      To begin, I agree with you that we don’t have a complete NT from the manuscripts until the 300s. There are other things I would like to respond to, but I am curious to know what you believe about a few things so I can respond appropriately.

      When do you believe the NT was written and do you accept traditional Christian views regarding authorship? Who do you think Jesus was and what do you believe about the resurrection? Do you believe oral tradition is more reliable than written statements?

      Thanks again.

      Like

      • Hey Jay ,

        Thanks again for continuing the conversation. As for my name, I don’t really share it with people online. But if you would like to call me something, my pen name would be AbdurRahman.

        I am happy that we are able to come to an agreement on a point. Not for the sake of ego, but for the truth.

        As one of our wise sages says :

        “Never do I debate a man with a desire to hear him err in his speech, or to expose the flaws in his argument, and thus vanquish him. Whenever I face an opponent in debate I silently supplicate, ‘O Lord, help him so that truth may manifest itself in his heart and on his tongue. If it be that the truth is on my side, may he follow me; and if the truth be on his side, may I follow him.’”

        As for the rest of points I have made, I await your responses at your earliest convenience.

        To answer your questions:

        (1) When do you believe the NT was written and do you accept traditional Christian views regarding authorship?

        I am sure there was an Injil/Gospel from Day 1 , most probably in Aramaic. And it wasn’t an account of the life of Jesus, but rather the verbatim words of God revealed to him.

        As for authorship, that is a good question. When you say accept ‘traditional Christian views’, do you mean views derived from the Church Fathers writings?

        (2) Who do you think Jesus was and what do you believe about the resurrection?

        We believe that he is a Prophet of God, who was born of a miraculous virgin birth. So just to reiterate , he is a prophet of God, a man, not the son of God, or God or part of a triune godhead.

        As for his Crucifixion, we do not believe that he suffered that punishment but instead was saved by God. And he will return in the end of times.

        (3) Do you believe oral tradition is more reliable than written statements?

        In Islam we have two sources of religious knowledge: Qur’an and hadith. Qur’an is the verbatim word of God, transmitted both orally and in written form. And we have chains of transmission, SOMETHING very important to consider.

        Then there is hadith, which is a historical account of what the Prophet did and said, preserved in oral and written forms and finally compiled in books. This again has its chains of transmission.

        So when you ask about oral traditions, you have to ask yourself, are we talking about oral traditions generally or in Islam.

        A professor had the following to say about our oral tradition regarding hadith:

        “Hadith science is an amazing accomplishment, that stands as one of the most impressive intellectual feats and edifices in human history…”- Prof. Jonathan Brown
        (https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2016/09/05/hadith-collection-and-criticism/)

        So as Muslims we take pride in the fact that our religious traditions have been preserved.

        I have a question for you, is that in Christianity do you have chains of transmission, what we call Isnads in Arabic?

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        • AbdurRahman, thanks for you response.

          What do you mean by chain of transmission? I think I have an idea, but I want to be sure. I’m not sure it’s the same thing you are talking about, but we do have a chain of transmission in some regard. The apostle John taught Ignatius and Polycarp, who taught Irenaeus, who taught Hippolytus. Similarly, Paul taught Linus and Clement of Rome, Clement taught Evaristus and Pius I, Pius I taught Justin Martyr, Justin taught Tatian. Also, Peter taught and communicated through Mark, who taught Justus, who taught, Pantaenus, who taught Clement of Alexander, who taught Origen. Is that what you were referring to?

          I would greatly enjoy speaking with you back and forth as long as you are interested, but I would also like to respect that you “don’t intend to make this a rebuttal , counter-rebuttal , counter -counter rebuttal.” As I mentioned before, I have not had the opportunity to have this kind of conversation with a Muslim so I am uncertain of how to have the most beneficial conversation, so I am sorry if I seem a little disorganized in what I respond to. If you think I am dodging any questions that you would like me to answer, please let me know and I will give you a direct response. After thinking about our conversation so far, I think the best place to focus would be the core issue, which is what we believe about Jesus. If you disagree, please let me know.

          I can see from your response that you do not believe the following statements about Jesus, but would you agree that the NT claims Jesus is the Messiah (the Christ), the only way to salvation, and He was resurrected from the dead?

          Thank you.

          Liked by 1 person

        • The columns are becoming smaller, and smaller. lol Lets continue below.

          Liked by 1 person

  4. In regards to the chains which you have brought , that is pretty much what I am talking about. But there are a few differences. For example, if someone had a dream about Prophet Muhammad, we would not consider that to be a reliable source of knowledge. So Paul having a ‘vision’ on the road to Damascus, from the onset wouldn’t be considered part of our religious tradition ( on a side note John 18:20 would refute such an idea, anyway).

    Moreover you have to look at the reliability of the chains, do you know who the people are in the chain, are there any breaks in the chain, do you have biographers of people in the chain. You don’t really have that in Christianity.

    Take for example the missing verses of the Bible which are not found in EITHER biblical manuscripts or Church father Quotations, but makes it way into the Bible in the 4th century. Where did these verses come from? Can you provide a chain? Or did they just ‘appear” This is the type of stuff I am talking about.

    As for continuing the conversation, I don’t mind I just didn’t want to offend you or waste your time. However If you could comment on another post, so we can have it more structured , as opposed to having a long withdrawn comment section here. But its your prerogative.

    No need to apologize, I appreciate the discourse.

    As for what YOU consider to be the NT or the Gospel, I would say that it definitely does not teach the Trinity or the divinity of Christ. As for the messiaship, I would say that it does teach that Jesus is the messiah, but a lot of people are called messiah. As for salvation, I agree that you have to accept Jesus as the representative of God, the same way you have to accept Moses as the representative of God during his time. As for the Crucifixion, I would say the Bible teaches a confused, ambiguous narrative leaving much to be desired.

    Perhaps we can continue the conversation here:

    https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2016/09/05/garry-miller-on-islam-and-christianity/

    Please start from time index 48:05, However if you don’t want to watch that, just pick another post and we can continue on that. Or we can continue on your blog. Whatever you like.

    I would highly suggest watching the video, its the reason i got into learning more about the Bible.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. If you don’t mind, I would prefer to continue the conversation here so that all we say is located in one place. It seems to make more sense that way to me, but if you insist, I don’t mind moving it elsewhere.

    I am not aware of any place in the NT that someone other than Jesus is called the Messiah. Can you please tell me where this is?

    Although it seems we may have some disagreements about what the NT teaches, we seem to agree that it is different than what the Qur’an teaches. I suppose this is a given since you believe the Qur’an is sets the record straight.

    What I am wondering, is what evidence do you have that Jesus did no rise from the dead? Even if there are textual variants and minor disagreements (which can arguably be harmonized if you are willing to search for the answers), that doesn’t disprove the resurrection. There is no disagreement anywhere in the NT that Jesus actually rose from the dead.

    Similarly, what evidence is there that the Qur’an actually sets the record straight? Joseph Smith claimed to do the same thing with the Book of Mormon. What reasons are there for trusting the Qur’an rather than the Book of Mormon? Why trust what the Qur’an says about Jesus rather than what the NT says about Him?

    Liked by 1 person

  6. No problem, as you wish.

    As for messiah , I was talking about other Prophets being called Messiah. For example David(2 Samuel 23:1-7).

    As for your question, about what evidence do i have (from what you consider to be the NT) that Jesus did not get crucified and did not rise from the dead? I am just saying that if properly viewed, the narrative could easily show that Simon of Cyrene died on the cross. Not saying that happened, there is just confusion on the matter. Keeping all that aside, the real question and point I am making throughout our discourse is that can we trust the Biblical account?

    (https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/simon-of-cyrene-died-on-the-cross/)

    In response to comparing Mormonism to Islam. I would have to say that Christianity is in the same boat. The Jews of the Old Testament did not worship God with the understanding that they worshiped a trinity. But then in the NT (according to you) , the trinity is being taught. Is the NT setting the record straight about the godhead?

    I was hoping you could address one point I brought up in the previous comment I made. I apologize if I phrased it in a rhetorical way:

    “Take for example the missing verses of the Bible which are not found in EITHER biblical manuscripts or Church father Quotations, but makes it way into the Bible in the 4th century. Where did these verses come from? Can you provide a chain? Or did they just ‘appear”?”

    Like

  7. Sorry for not answering the question. I was merely trying to stay focused on what I think is most important and I don’t see the chain as a primary issue for several reasons. So to answer your question directly, the NT verses you speak of were written down in the original letters. They were always there. Just because they weren’t quoted or don’t appear in the oldest fragments and manuscripts doesn’t mean they weren’t originally written, unless they are missing from the oldest fragments and manuscripts from where they should be. There is evidence of a handful of verses being absent in the oldest manuscripts, such as Mark 16:9-20 and John 7:53-8:11, but this doesn’t affect the core of Christianity, which is that Jesus rose from the dead. Each verse would have to be evaluated case by case, but for the most part, the writing style throughout each individual letter is quite consistent, so to maintain these verses are late additions would be very improbably. On top of all that, about half of the NT is quoted by the church fathers, plus what is in the oldest manuscripts. From my understanding, within those verses that have a chain, Jesus still did miracles, rose from the dead, and claimed to be the only way to salvation. Absence of evidence for something is not evidence against it.

    Here’s the article you cited in your post about the misconception that all but 11 verses are quoted by the church fathers. It points out that 46% of the NT is quoted by the church fathers (more than just al but 11 verses of John). https://theosophical.wordpress.com/2012/01/17/modern-myth-all-but-11-verses-of-the-nt-could-be-constructed-from-the-writings-of-the-early-church-fathers/

    The Christian view of the NT is that it is progressive or additional revelation added on to the OT. The reason I am willing to trust it, as opposed to other books that claim to be from God, is because Jesus and the apostles backed up their claims with signs and miracles from God. Jesus fulfilled prophecy from the OT, He performed miracles, empowered the apostles to perform miracles, and He rose from the dead. Several tests of authenticity show the NT to be reliable in what it claims about these things and the best explanation for how Christianity grew, despite persecution, is that the resurrection really happened. What evidence is there that the Qur’an is from God or that Muhammad was a prophet of God?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. P.S. Can you please clarify how 2 Samuel 23:1-7 claims David is the Messiah? I didn’t see it in those verses. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Thanks for your reply.

    I will start from the latter point first:

    2 Samuel 23:1 Now these be the last words of David. David the son of Jesse said, and the man who was raised up on high, the anointed of the God of Jacob, and the sweet psalmist of Israel, said,

    The Hebrew word for “anointed” is mashiyach.

    Translators can be very deceptive. ( I learned that from the Gary Miller video, again you should check it out if you get the chance, and perhaps move our conversation there)

    —————
    “Absence of evidence for something is not evidence against it.”

    True, but absence of evidence for something does not prove that assertion to be true either. If you hold on to this position then your committing a Logical Fallacy.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Argument_from_ignorance

    This is a logical fallacy referred to as Argument from ignorance (from Latin: argumentum ad ignorantiam), also known as appeal to ignorance (in which ignorance represents “a lack of contrary evidence”), is a fallacy in informal logic. It asserts that a proposition is true because it has not yet been proven false (or vice versa). This represents a type of false dichotomy in that it excludes a third option, which is that there may have been an insufficient investigation, and therefore there is insufficient information to prove the proposition be either true or false

    ———
    As for miracles, they are restricted to time and place. The parting of the Red Sea, Jesus walking on water, and other prophetic miracles you can find; you and I weren’t present there, so how can we rely on such events as a basis for faith. We believe in them because of our faith, but we can’t basis our faith off of them , since we weren’t present.

    On the other hand, Muslims have the greatest miracle which is the Qur’an, the verbatim word of God, preserved for all mankind and for all time.

    However if you do want ‘regular miracles’, we have those as well in Islam. But I don’t think I would need to resort to bringing that up, as the point has been made.
    ——-

    I have another question, do Christians have an oral tradition like the Muslims? I.E. Was the Bible memorized verbatim, or what is all passed down from writings? And if there are so many writings circulating around at that time, how come we have only a few manuscripts available to us now? You sort of answered this before, but the point remains that we don’ have these manuscripts so we cant say with certainty what is being said. I don’t want to dwell too much on this topic, unless if you want to. Or we can agree to disagree? Your call.

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  10. Thank you AbdurRahman for your response. I must say, I completely agree with you regarding the argument from ignorance. As you have probably experienced, many Christians rely on this type of argument to support their views and it is extremely frustrating.

    The reason I believe the whole NT we have today is part of the original is because of textual criticism, literary analysis, and archaeology. I believe because of evidence, not because there is no evidence to disprove it. If you want more details, let me know, but just a few of the reasons for my view is because the writing style is internally consistent within each letter, the language of the NT is consistent with first century language (language usage changes over time), the usage of names in the NT very closely matches first century usage, the criteria of embarrassment along with other criteria used by historians, archaeology has repeatedly confirmed (and never disproved) details about the first century that the NT mentions, writings of church fathers, and the writings of non-Christian authors such as Josephus, Tacitus, and others.

    I’m not sure if Christians specifically have an oral tradition in the way you might be referring, but the time and place where the NT was written was an oral culture. Jews in particular memorized the Torah verbatim. The NT, however, was written by many eye-witnesses and people very close to Jesus, so this is of limited importance. Even if they didn’t memorize Jesus’ words verbatim, they still witnessed the Him do miracles, performed miracles themselves, and witnessed the Resurrection. Paul and Luke didn’t witness it, but were close to those who did once they became believers and Paul has an experience of the risen Jesus (Christians believe it was more than just a vision).

    The reason we don’t have the oldest manuscripts is because they were written on papyri, which is a very thin and fragile type of paper. It is very susceptible to decay, especially due to moisture. It wasn’t until the 4th century that parchment started being used more often. Moreover, Christians were sought out for persecution and their writings were either burned or re-purposed for other uses, such as being used as plaster for mummy masks (regardless of dating, it still shows that the Bible was used for other purposes).

    Using standard historical methods, the NT is reliable, especially the core claims that Jesus is the only way to salvation and He rose from the dead to save us from our sins. Because there is so much evidence for this, the burden of proof falls on those who disagree with the evidence. Is that something we can agree on? And is there evidence to the contrary?

    I would like to make a quick comment regarding 2 Sam 23. The word mashiach is used 39 times in the OT and only twice is it translating as “Messiah,” in Daniel 9:25 and 26. The reason these two are translated as Messiah is because the context refers to the Messiah (the annointed Prince). Translating it as Messiah just makes it more clear to the average reader.
    http://biblehub.com/hebrew/4899.htm

    Sorry that this response got a little long. Let me know if you agree, but I think the most important issues to focus on are whether the NT is reliable and whether their is evidence that the Qur’an is from God. Do you have any positive evidence against the NT? What are the miracles of the Qur’an and Islam to prove it is from God? Also related but more secondary for now, do you believe the Qur’an has been perfectly preserved?

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  11. Sorry for the late reply.

    I am trying to figure out how best to approach this. I feel we are coming to an impasse and at this point we are just repeating ourselves (from both sides). I think I will conclude our discussion on the reliability and authenticity of the Bible. Unless if you want to continue , I don’t mind.

    I figure we can talk about Islam now, you probably have a lot of questions. I suggest you pick a new post, and we start there. Or we can continue here if u like.

    Let me just answer some of your questions, before we make a move(that is if you want to move):

    (1) “Using standard historical methods, the NT is reliable, especially the core claims that Jesus is the only way to salvation and He rose from the dead to save us from our sins. Because there is so much evidence for this, the burden of proof falls on those who disagree with the evidence. Is that something we can agree on? And is there evidence to the contrary?”

    This is a big claim on your part. Again if you want to continue this discussion, I don’t mind.

    However, I think this short video of Bart Ehrman shows that that statement is incorrect:

    (2) What are the miracles of the Qur’an and Islam to prove it is from God?

    The Qur’an itself is the biggest miracle, as I have previously alluded to, But we have other miracles as well.

    (3) Also related but more secondary for now, do you believe the Qur’an has been perfectly preserved?

    Yes , word for word , letter for letter, dot for dot.

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  12. Thanks for the response. I would like to continue the conversation on biblical reliability, as I feel we are just starting to get beyond the surface of the issues, but I am ok if you want to stop on this topic.

    I would just like to say that Ehrman is being inconsistent and unrealistic in his presentation. The evidence he uses to call the Gospels into question is the same evidence (along with others) he uses to make the claim Jesus existed. Also, he accurately gives what is the ideal standard for historical investigation, but doesn’t mention that no historical works meet that criteria. To reject the reliability of the NT is to reject everything ever known from historical documents of that time (or even as late as the 4th century) or earlier. You should listen to what Licona says in response to Ehrman in that debate.

    What are the miracles of Islam and why is the Qur’an a miracle?

    How do you understand Sahih Bukhari 6.61.510 as it relates to the preservation of the Qur’an?

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  13. No Problem, We can continue the conversation.

    ( I AM TYPING IN CAPS SOMETIMES NOT TO YELL AT YOU, LOL BUT YO DISTINGUISH BETWEEN YOUR QUOTE AND MY COMMENT)

    Here are some statements you mentioned:

    ” On top of that, the early copies of the Bible were passed around and copied over and over, across a large area, so we wouldn’t expect them to have survived.” (I DONT UNDERSTAND , SHOULDN’T THIS MEAN WE HAVE MORE MANUSCRIPTS AVAILABLE. MOREOVER THIS STATEMENTS SEEMS FALSE[WITH ALL DUE RESPECT] BECAUSE CHRISTIANS IN ANTIQUITY WERE NOT LITERATE )

    “To begin, I agree with you that we don’t have a complete NT from the manuscripts until the 300s. “( MINOR CORRECTION: NT MANUSCRIPTS AND CHURCH FATHER QUOTATION)

    “Just because they weren’t quoted or don’t appear in the oldest fragments and manuscripts doesn’t mean they weren’t originally written, unless they are missing from the oldest fragments and manuscripts from where they should be” ( AND IT DOESN’T MEAN THEY WERE THERE EITHER. DONT YOU FEEL THAT THIS IS QUESTIONABLE MATERIAL TO BASE YOUR FAITH OFF OF)

    “. From my understanding, within those verses that have a chain, Jesus still did miracles, rose from the dead, and claimed to be the only way to salvation. Absence of evidence for something is not evidence against it.” (CAN YOU PLEASE CONFIRM? MOREOVER THE FACT THAT YOU DONT HAVE A MANUSCRIPT AT ALL IN THE FIRST CENTURY ALREADY PUTS IN DOUBT ALL OF THESE EVENTS, DOES IT NOT)

    I would like to compare all of those statements with what Ehrman (which you guys probably think is the Antichrist, lol) has to say:

    ““This kind of realization coincided with the problems I was encountering the more closely I studied the surviving Greek manuscripts of the New Testament. It is one thing to say that the originals were inspired, but the reality is that we don’t have the originals—so saying they were inspired doesn’t help me much, unless I can reconstruct the originals. Moreover, the vast majority of Christians for the entire history of the church have not had access to the originals, making their inspiration something of a moot point. Not only do we not have the originals, we don’t have the first copies of the originals. We don’t even have copies of the copies of the originals, or copies of the copies of the copies of the originals. What we have are copies made later—much later. In most instances, they are copies made many centuries later. And these copies all differ from one another, in many thousands of places. As we will see later in this book, these copies differ from one another in so many places that we don’t even know how many differences there are. Possibly it is easiest to put it in comparative terms: there are more differences among our manuscripts than there are words in the New Testament.””

    https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2016/09/05/more-differences-among-manuscripts-than-words-in-the-new-testament/

    The part I would like to focus on is whether we can “reconstruct the original ” and the fact that vast majority of Christians were illiterate and had no access to the original manuscripts. I am not sure if we agreed, but the Christians of that time did not have an oral traditions(like the Muslims) and could not read or write. So how were these missing verses passed down? Isn’t it possible that stories were passed down and were ’embellished and Hellenized to appeal to a pagan greco-roman society. Each turn of the game of “Chinese Whispers” leading to more and more distortion of the truth.

    ————————————-

    Yes you have asked the same question, and I should do a better job in answering them:

    (1) What are the miracles of Islam and why is the Qur’an a miracle?

    As for the miracles of Islam, I think you mean the miracles of the Prophet Muhammad, then they are many. I don’t like quoting Wikipedia, but they do a good job. Let me know which miracle you want to go into, and we can discuss more:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miracles_of_Muhammad

    As for the Qur’an being a miracle, there are many. For starters , its preservation, its linguistic style which was paralleled by none at that time and after it. The Qur’an also contains prophecies .And there are also scientific miracles, There are plethora of other miracles to mention, perhaps if you can narrow down what you want I can provide more detail.

    (2) As for the preservation of the Quran and the hadith you brought up:

    Yes, there were drafts of the Qur’an burned, as it was not needed and you had the complete text compiled. If you compare that to the Bible, manuscripts were burned as well, albeit because Christians were being persecuted. However ,if your claim is that something is being lost because of that act, then the Christians have no argument as the same was done with their own scriptures

    Moreover, DESPITE that fact we still have manuscripts available to us in the first century that are hundred percent identical to the Qur’an we have today.

    Like

  14. I’m hoping our discussion is becoming more productive, don’t be shy if you feel i have not addressed an issue to your satisfaction. Or perhaps have grossly misunderstood a point. Let me know.

    Also I hope you dont find the tone of my comment to be more strict or critical.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. I feel blessed to have The Holiest Word from The only Deity Most High The Quran. It has been a grace from Allah to be given permission to speak by authority of The Holy Spirit which emanated to the Righteous messenger and Prophet Muhammad.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Thanks again for the response AbdurRahman. Your tone has been quite respectful, which has made our conversation enjoyable, so thank you. I will say that I do feel as though you might be misunderstanding me a little in what I say. For instance, when I asked about the NT claiming Jesus is the only way to heaven, you defended your position against His divinity. I have spoken about the historical reliability of the NT and you criticize it for not being divinely preserved, a claim I have never espoused. I think it would be more beneficial for our conversation to pay more attention to details and not to move to new topics before resolving the ones we’re on so that the conversation can progress.

    By the way, what are your thoughts about the word mashiach since I last mentioned it?

    I think most apologists have a love/hate view of Ehrman (at least I do). He says some great and reasonable stuff at times, particularly regarding the existence of Jesus, but then he says a lot of inconsistent and erroneous things when he attacks the NT. He makes a lot of unfounded assumptions, ignores standard historical methods, and only uses data that supports his position. Interestingly, we started our discussion on Dan Wallace’s blog on a post about textual variants, yet you still have on your blog a misleading post about textual variants and cited it above. Do you not agree with what Wallace said about textual variants or do you not quite understand how they are counted? It can be quite confusing. The number Ehrman mentions is so high is because he is counting every variant from every single manuscript. In reality, there are about 138,000 words in the NT and about 13,000 different places in the NT where there is a variant. On top of that, many of the variants are very simple and basic copy errors that can clearly be corrected such as a misspelled word, an accent mark in the wrong place, or a change in the noun/verb ending. None of these variants affect the claim that Jesus rose from the dead.

    Are you familiar with the criteria of authenticity? I feel like that might be a valuable discussion to come to an understanding of historical reliability, particularly regarding whether we can reconstruct the originals.

    There are many reasons to believe we can reconstruct the originals. We see little to no change in the manuscripts over time. Ehrman claims that the gospel message changed to become legend over time, but even if that’s true (I don’t think it is), the manuscripts we have don’t change. In the few places they do, we have record of it because we have so many manuscripts. On top of that, we have the writings of the church fathers that support much of the NT (I am willing to dig into specifics on this, but the only thing I think needs supporting from the church fathers is the resurrection) and we have non-Christian sources that support what the NT says, for instance, Josephus admits that Jesus’ followers believed He appeared to them alive, after His crucifixion and that he was the Messiah.

    Moreover, it didn’t matter if most of them couldn’t read or write. It only took a single person within the church to be literate to read the letter. Additionally, you can copy a text without being literate or with minimal literacy (which likely explains some variants). And because they were generally illiterate, they did live in an oral culture and focused on memorization. It’s very unlikely that the story became “embellished and Hellenized” because it put them at odds with both the Jewish and Roman culture, which caused them to become persecuted by both groups and lose their “religio licita” (legal religious status) with the Romans. Not to mention, Paul (who I believe even Ehrman accepts as the author of 1 Cor) mentions the resurrection and says it is the focal point of all of Christianity. He gives a early creed which likely dates to less than 2 years after the resurrection (1 Cor 15:3-7, but the whole chapter might be worth reading). http://biblehub.com/nasb/1_corinthians/15.htm Also, the NT was written within the lifetime of witnesses, including many who were hostile to Christianity, so if the resurrection grew into legend, we would expect to find sources correcting the changes. We don’t find this anywhere and we do find opposing groups trying to explain the facts in other ways (e.g. saying the empty tomb was because the apostles stole the body).

    The hadith I mentioned said that the copies of the Qur’an were burned by early Islamic leaders because of their differences, not because they weren’t needed. There is no record that copied of the NT were ever burned by church leaders to hide differences. If the Qur’an is what you believe it to be, it cannot have differences. It doesn’t matter if things we lost or added, but the simple fact that there were any differences is evidence that it was not perfectly preserved. Moreover, Sahih Bukhari 6.61.550 says that the Qur’an “escapes from the hearts of men faster than camel do” and Sahih Bukhari 6.61.558 says that even Muhammad forgot verses of it. Then Sahih Bukhari 6.61.527 says that “Ubai was the best of us in the recitation (of the Qur’an) yet we leave out some of what he recites.” How do you understand all this as it relates to the perfect preservation of the Qur’an? I would like to discuss the miracles of Islam more, but only after reaching some sort of conclusion on this topic.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Thanks, I am enjoying the conversation and discourse as well.

    Let me go CAPSLOCK mode to better address the points.

    ——————

    Thanks again for the response (NO PROBLEM) AbdurRahman. Your tone has been quite respectful, which has made our conversation enjoyable, so thank you.(NO PROBLEM AGAIN) I will say that I do feel as though you might be misunderstanding me a little in what I say.(APOLOGIZES) For instance, when I asked about the NT claiming Jesus is the only way to heaven, you defended your position against His divinity.(JAY, I THINK I DID ANSWER THAT: “As for salvation, I agree that you have to accept Jesus as the representative of God, the same way you have to accept Moses as the representative of God during his time.”)

    I have spoken about the historical reliability of the NT and you criticize it for not being divinely preserved, a claim I have never espoused

    (I THOUGHT i DID BY BRINGING UP THE VIDEO OF BART EHRMAN VIDEO ON : “Dr. Bart Ehrman concludes it “gospels are not a reliable historical sources”

    ARE WE ARGUING WHETHER WE CAN TAKE THE BIBLE AS A HISTORICAL DOCUMENT OR WHETHER THEY ARE HISTORICALLY RELIABLE, WHICH I THINK IS ONE IN THE SAME?))

    I think it would be more beneficial for our conversation to pay more attention to details and not to move to new topics before resolving the ones we’re on so that the conversation can progress.(AGREED, SORRY IF I HAVE GONE INTO TRANGENTS)

    By the way, what are your thoughts about the word mashiach since I last mentioned it?(SORRY I DIDN’T MEAN TO GLOSS OVER IT, THE POINT I AM MAKING IS THAT A LOT OF PEOPLE WERE CALLED MESSIAH. SO IT IS NOT A TITLE WHICH RAISES ONE UP TO A DIVINE STATUS. I THINK IT IS BEING INTELLECTUALLY DISHONEST WHEN TRANSLATORS TRANSLATE WORDS TO FIT THEIR DOCTRINE AND THEOLOGY, MY QUESTION IS THAT DOES THE HEBREW DIFFERENTIATE BETWEEN The Messiah and A Messiah, I may be wrong, let me know? )

    I think most apologists have a love/hate view of Ehrman (at least I do). He says some great and reasonable stuff at times, particularly regarding the existence of Jesus, but then he says a lot of inconsistent and erroneous things when he attacks the NT. He makes a lot of unfounded assumptions, ignores standard historical methods, and only uses data that supports his position. Interestingly, we started our discussion on Dan Wallace’s blog on a post about textual variants, yet you still have on your blog a misleading post about textual variants and cited it above.(SORRY I AM READING THE TRANSCRIPT OF OUR CONVERSATION, PLEASE REMIND ME SO I CAN CORRECT IT)

    Do you not agree with what Wallace said about textual variants or do you not quite understand how they are counted? It can be quite confusing. The number Ehrman mentions is so high is because he is counting every variant from every single manuscript. In reality, there are about 138,000 words in the NT and about 13,000 different places in the NT where there is a variant. On top of that, many of the variants are very simple and basic copy errors that can clearly be corrected such as a misspelled word, an accent mark in the wrong place, or a change in the noun/verb ending. None of these variants affect the claim that Jesus rose from the dead.( I UNDERSTAND THE MAJORITY ARE WHAT PEOPLE CONSIDER TO BE ‘MINOR’ DIFFERENCES’, BUT THE FACT REMAINS THOUGH, CAN YOU COME UP WITH THE ORIGINAL GOSPEL, THE WORD OF GOD WHICHS SHOULD BE PRISTINE.

    LET ME CONCEDE THE POINT (JUST TO FURTHER THE DISCUSSION), THAT THE MAJORITY OF THESE VARIANTS ARE MINOR SPELLING MISTAKES, COMMAS, ETC. YOU STILL HAVE VARIANTS WHICH AFFECT CHRISTIANITY ON MANY LEVELS. NOT ONLY DOCTRINAL BUT EVEN IN CHRISTIAN THOUGHT.

    LET ME BRING UP AN EXAMPLE OF THE LATTER POINT FIRST, THE PERICOPE ADULTERATE (THE STORY OF THE ADULTERESS BROUGHT IN FRONT OF JESUS) . SUCH A STORY MAY NOT AFFECT CHRISTIAN DOCTRINE ON THE SURFACE, BUT IT DOES AFFECT CHRISTIANITY. I WOULD BE SO BOLD TO SAY THAT MANY CHRISTIANS MAY JUSTIFY PREMARITAL SEX, FORNICATION AND ADULTERY OFF OF SUCH STORIES OF ‘COMPASSION AND MERCY”

    AS FOR DOCTRINAL (YOU MAY NOT AGREE WIT THIS) BUT I HAD ALLUDED TO THIS BEFORE ON WALLACE’S BLOG, THAT WITHOUT THE VERSE OF 1 JOHN 5:7 YOU REALLY CANT COME TO THE TRINITY, IT JUST BOILS DOWN TO YOU INTERPRETING OTHER VERSES.

    NOW THE MAIN POINT (APOLOGIZES FOR THE LONG TANGENT) .THE CRUCIFIXION, YOU HAVE TO CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING:.

    : (1) THE LACK OF THE STORY IN FRAGMENTS/MANUSCRIPTS BEFORE THE 4TH CENTURY, DOES NOT MEAN THAT THE STORY WAS PART OF THE ORIGINAL. AND AFTER THE 4TH CENTURY YOU HAVE REFERENCE MATERIAL , SO OF COURSE YOU WOULD NOT HAVE DIFFERENCES AMONGST VARIANTS. THE POINT I AM MAKING IS THAT THE CRUCIFIXION IS NOT MENTIONED IN THE EARLIER MANUSCRIPTS, CORRECT ME IF IM WRONG

    (2) IS WHAT YOU CONSIDER TO BE THE BIBLE, IS THE BIBLE? THERE ARE MANY OTHER BIBLES THAT DO NOT HAVE THIS STORY OF JESUS DYING ON THE CROSS. ONE MANS HERESY MIGHT BE ANOTHER MAN’S ORTHODOXY, AND VICE VERSA.

    Are you familiar with the criteria of authenticity? I feel like that might be a valuable discussion to come to an understanding of historical reliability, particularly regarding whether we can reconstruct the originals.(SURE WE CAN GET INTO THIS, DOWN INTO ANOTHER RABBIT HOLE ,LOL)

    There are many reasons to believe we can reconstruct the originals. We see little to no change in the manuscripts over time. Ehrman claims that the gospel message changed to become legend over time, but even if that’s true (I don’t think it is), the manuscripts we have don’t change. In the few places they do, we have record of it because we have so many manuscripts. (PLEASE REFER TO THIS:

    https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/05/22/25000-new-testament-manuscripts-big-deal/)

    \ On top of that, we have the writings of the church fathers that support much of the NT (I am willing to dig into specifics on this, but the only thing I think needs supporting from the church fathers is the resurrection) (THE APOSTOLIC FATHERS ( THE CHURCH FATHERS THAT ACTUALLY MATTER) AND THEIR QUOTATIONS ARE NOT BE TRUSTED. PLEASE REFER TO:

    https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/08/06/can-the-heretical-church-fathers-be-trusted/

    https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/05/18/value-of-the-apostolic-fathers-quotations/

    https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/05/16/early-church-fathers-on-scriptures-being-final-authority/

    and we have non-Christian sources that support what the NT says, for instance, Josephus admits that Jesus’ followers believed He appeared to them alive, after His crucifixion and that he was the Messiah.( THERE ARE MANY THINGS TO CONSIDER IN THIS COMMENT, PERHAPS WE CAN LEAVE JOSEPHUS AND TACITUS TO ANOTHER DAY)

    Moreover, it didn’t matter if most of them couldn’t read or write. It only took a single person within the church to be literate to read the letter. Additionally, you can copy a text without being literate or with minimal literacy (which likely explains some variants). And because they were generally illiterate, they did live in an oral culture and focused on memorization.( THIS IS WHY I BROUGHT UP THE TOPIC OF ORAL TRADITIONS. HOWEVER YOU CLAIMED THAT :

    “I’m not sure if Christians specifically have an oral tradition in the way you might be referring, but the time and place where the NT was written was an oral culture…The NT, however, was written by many eye-witnesses and people very close to Jesus, so this is of limited importance).”

    PERHAPS I HAVE MISUNDERSTOOD YOU QUOTE. DID THEY HAVE AN ORAL TRADITION AND IS IT IMPORTANT?

    NOT TO DIVERT FROM THE ISSUE, JUST TO BRING UP A POINT OF POPULAR CULTURE. I HEARD OF THIS MOVIE “BOOK OF ELI” HAVEN’T WATCHED IT YET, DIDN’T GET AROUND TO IT. BUT FROM THE SYNOPSIS, THE MOVIE BASICALLY IS TAKING PLACE IN POST-APOCALYPTIC SETTING, YOU HAVE ONE GUY WHO IS BEING CHASED AROUND BECAUSE HE IS THE LAST REMAINING SOURCE OF THE BIBLE.

    FOR A MUSLIM, THE WHOLE PREMISE OF THE MOVIE IS LAUGHABLE. IN ISLAM YOU DON’T HAVE THAT PROBLEM. THE QUR’AN HAS BEEN MEMORIZED WORD FOR WORD, LETTER FOR LETTER, DOT FOR DOT. IT HAS BEEN PRESERVED IN THE HEARTS AND MINDS OF PEOPLE. THIS IS THE TYPE OF ORAL TRADITION I AM TALKING ABOUT, DOES CHRISTIANITY HAVE SOMETHING SIMILAR IN THE FIRST THREE CENTURIES?

    DO YOU HAVE THE GOSPEL MEMORIZED IN THE Original ARAMAIC? IN THE GREEK? IN THE Latin? HOW ABOUT THE ENGLISH WHICH YOU READ?)

    It’s very unlikely that the story became “embellished and Hellenized” because it put them at odds with both the Jewish and Roman culture, which caused them to become persecuted by both groups and lose their “religiolicita” (legal religious status) with the Romans. Not to mention, Paul (who I believe even Ehrman accepts as the author of 1 Cor) mentions the resurrection and says it is the focal point of all of Christianity. He gives a early creed which likely dates to less than 2 years ( THATS A BOLD CLAIM, AND PERHAPS WE CAN TALK MORE ABOUT THIS )after the resurrection (1 Cor 15:3-7, but the whole chapter might be worth reading). http://biblehub.com/nasb/1_corinthians/15.htm Also, the NT was written within the lifetime of witnesses(YOU MENTIONED THIS BEFORE, PLEASE ELABORATE), including many who were hostile to Christianity, so if the resurrection grew into legend, we would expect to find sources correcting the changes. We don’t find this anywhere and we do find opposing groups trying to explain the facts in other ways (e.g. saying the empty tomb was because the apostles stole the body)(THERE ARE GROUPS THAT EXPLAIN THE ‘FACTS’ IN A DIFFERENT WAY:

    https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/simon-of-cyrene-died-on-the-cross/

    )

    The hadith I mentioned said that the copies of the Qur’an were burned by early Islamic leaders because of their differences, not because they weren’t needed. There is no record that copied of the NT were ever burned by church leaders to hide differences. If the Qur’an is what you believe it to be, it cannot have differences It doesn’t matter if things we lost or added, but the simple fact that there were any differences is evidence that it was not perfectly preserved. (IT DOESN’T HAVE DIFFERENCES, SOME PEOPLE STARTING TO COPY AND RECITED INCORRECTLY. TO MAKE SURE WE DIDNT END UP LIKE THE JEWS AND CHRISTIANS, AS IT SAYS IN THE SAME NARRATION YOU REFEREED TO: “O chief of the Believers! Save this nation before they differ about the Book (Qur’an) as Jews and the Christians did before.” WE PUT A STOP TO THIS BY REFERRING BACK TO THE ORIGINALS. DID THE BIBLE HAVE AN ORIGINAL TO REFER TO AS IT WAS BEING SPREAD ACROSS LANDS ) Moreover, Sahih Bukhari 6.61.550 says that the Qur’an “escapes from the hearts of men faster than camel do” ( THIS IS SELECTIVE QUOTING, LETS QUOTE THE SENTENCE BEFORE”So you must keep on reciting the Qur’an ” IT IS A COMMAND FROM GOD AND HIS PROPHET TO MAKE SURE IT REMAINS IN THE HEARTS AND MINDS OF THE PEOPLE). and Sahih Bukhari 6.61.558 says that even Muhammad forgot verses of it. ( THIS GOES TO SHOW YOU HE WAS A MAN, AND SOMETIMES MEN FORGET, BUT THE QURAN WAS BEING MEMORIZED AND WRITTEN DOWN FROM DAY 1 OF ITS REVELATION TO A COMMUNITY WHO PRESERVED IT. MOREOVER THE ANGEL GABRIEL DID COME TO REVISE THE QURAN WITH HIM TWICE, BEFORE HIS DEATH. THIS WAS THE FINAL VERSION) Then Sahih Bukhari 6.61.527 says that “Ubai was the best of us in the recitation (of the Qur’an) yet we leave out some of what he recites.” (IF YOU CONTINUE THE TEXT YOU WILL FIND THE FOLLOWING AYAH OF THE QURA’N : We do not abrogate a verse or cause it to be forgotten except that We bring forth [one] better than it or similar to it. THIS VERSE OF THE QUR’AN SHOWS THAT IN THE REVELATION OF THE QUR’AN DURING THE LIFE TIME OF THE PROPHET CERTAIN VERSES WERE ABROGATED AS PER THE WILL OF GOD. THE PRESERVATION OF THE QUR’AN , AND THE CLAIM I MAKE, IS THAT THE FINAL VERSION WHICH WAS REVEALED TO THE PROPHET MUHAMMAD,BEFORE HIS DEATH, HAS BEEN PERFECTLY PRESERVED TILL THIS DAY ) How do you understand all this as it relates to the perfect preservation of the Qur’an? (I MAINTAIN THAT THE QUR’AN HAS BEEN PERFECTLY PRESERVED. FROM THE FINAL REVELATION WHEN THE PROPHET DIED UNTIL NOW IN THE HEARTS AND MINDS OF BILLIONS OF PEOPLE: This day, I have perfected your religion for you, completed My Favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion 5:3 ) I would like to discuss the miracles of Islam more, but only after reaching some sort of conclusion on this topic. (NO PROBLEM)

    WHEW THIS TOOK SOME TIME!LOL!

    HOPEFULLY I ADDRESSED ALL THE POINTS TO YOUR SATISFACTION AND UNDERSTOOD THE POINTS YOU ARE MAKING. SINCE YOU ARE THE GUEST I WILL LET YOU DIRECT THE CONVERSATION TO YOUR LIKING.

    Liked by 1 person

    • There are lots of things I would like to discuss, but the posts are getting too long to do that so I will keep this brief and come back to the other points later. Do you believe Simon of Cyrene died on the cross in place of Jesus or are you just using what others have said about this to to cast doubt on the Christian view?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Btw, I am using a HTML editor. It makes comments look soooo much better.laughing

        Anyways back to your comment. As for the Muslim position on the cruxifiction this is what we believe, as it says in the Qur’an (4::157):

        And because of their saying: We slew the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, Allah’s messenger – they slew him not nor crucified him, but it appeared so unto them; and lo! those who disagree concerning it are in doubt thereof; they have no knowledge thereof save pursuit of a conjecture; they slew him not for certain.

        Basically, we assert that God not only saved him from death but also  from incurring any hurt at all. As for whether it was Simon of Cyrene, God knows best. 

        The reason I bring up this point in the conversation is because you made the following argument “ so if the resurrection grew into legend, we would expect to find sources correcting the changes. We don’t find this anywhere and we do find opposing groups trying to explain the facts in other ways (e.g. saying the empty tomb was because the apostles stole the body)”

        My argument is that you do have ‘opposing groups’ who are christian, explaining ‘the facts’ in a different way.

        Let me share some quotes from that post to show you what opposing groups believed:

        https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/04/26/simon-of-cyrene-died-on-the-cross/

        The 4th cent writer Epiphanius of Salamis mentions:

        This second mimologue mounts another dramatic piece for us in his account of the cross of Christ; for he claims that not Jesus, but Simon of Cyrene, has suffered. For when the Lord was marched out of Jerusalem, as the Gospel passage says, one Simon of Cyrene was compelled to bear the cross. From this he finds his trickeries opportunity for composing his dramatic piece and says:Jesus changed Simon into his own form while he was bearing the cross, and changed himself into Simon, and delivered Simon to crucifixion in his place. During Simon’s crucifixion Jesus stood opposite him unseen, laughing at the persons who were crucifying Simon. But he himself flew off to the heavenly realms after delivering Simon to crucifixion, and returned to heaven without suffering. It was Simon himself who was crucified, not Jesus. Jesus, Basilides says, passed through all the powers on his flight to heaven, till he was restored to his own Father

        (Panarion of Epiphanius: Against Basilides Part 24: 3.2-3.4)

         But the father without birth and without name, perceiving that they would be destroyed, sent his own first-begotten Nous to bestow deliverance on them that believe in him, from the power of those who made the world. He appeared, then, on earth as a man, to the nations of these powers, and wrought miracles.Wherefore he did not himself suffer death, but Simon, a certain man of Cyrene, being compelled, bore the cross in his stead; so that this latter being transfigured by him, that he might be thought to be Jesus, was crucified, through ignorance and error, while Jesus himself received the form of Simon, and, standing by, laughed at themFor since he was an incorporeal power, and the Nous (mind) of the unborn father, he transfigured himself as he pleased, and thus ascended to him who had sent him, deriding them, inasmuch as he could not be laid hold of, and was invisible to all. Those, then, who know these things have been freed from the principalities who formed the world; so that it is not incumbent on us to confess him who was crucified, but him who came in the form of a man, and was thought to be crucified, and was called Jesus, and was sent by the father, that by this dispensation he might destroy the works of the makers of the world. If any one, therefore, he declares, confesses the crucified, that man is still a slave, and under the power of those who formed our bodies; but he who denies him has been freed from these beings, and is acquainted with the dispensation of the unborn father. (Irenaeus of Lyons: Against Heresies, Book 1 Ch 24: 4)

        I did not succumb to them as they had planned. But I was not afflicted at all. Those who were there punished me. And I did not die in reality but in appearance, lest I be put to shame by them because these are my kinsfolk. I removed the shame from me and I did notbecome fainthearted in the face of what happened to me at their hands. I was about to succumb to fear, and I <suffered> according totheir sight and thought, in order that they may never find any word to speak about them. For my death, which they think happened,(happened) to them in their error and blindness, since they nailed their man unto their death. For their Ennoias did not see me, for they were deaf and blind. But in doing these things, they condemn themselves. Yes, they saw me; they punished me. It was another, their father, who drank the gall and the vinegar; it was not I. They struck me with the reed; it was another, Simon, who bore the cross on his shoulder. I was another upon Whom they placed the crown of thorns. But I was rejoicing in the height over all the wealth of the archons and the offspring of their error, of their empty glory. And I was laughing at their ignorance. (2nd Treatise of Great Seth: 9)

        These are just some quotes indicating that it was Simon of Cyrene.  But they are many other accouns confirming that someone else died on the cross. By brining up these quotes, I in no way agree with their creeds and beliefs, I am just making the argument that there were other Christians during that time who had a different account of what happened.

        And God knows best. 

        Hopefully I answered the question, Thanks !

        Liked by 1 person

  18. Thanks for the response. I suppose I should have been more clear on my claim. There is no source refuting that Jesus was crucified that dates back to the original events or within the life time of those who eye-witnessed it. This is important because, as we both know, legends develop over time so the closer a source is to the actual events, the more likely it is to be true.

    The claims such as you cited seem to just pop out of nowhere and are unsupported. They are late, they are rare, they are unfounded, they are not by eyewitnesses (nor do they claim to be), and they do not claim to be writing for historical purpose (such as Luke or Josephus). Even by your own standards, they are not reliable sources.

    Furthermore, these claims, as far as I know, all come out of Gnosticism, which was already threatening the church at the end of the first century as seen by the later books of the NT. It would make sense that Gnosticism would start to be incorporated into the beliefs of some Christians, especially at later dates, which would require the rejection of some parts of the Bible in order to support the Gnostic beliefs.

    Can we agree that there is no reliable evidence for the claim that Simon of Cyrene was crucified in Jesus’ place?

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Hey Jay,

    Thanks for the reply. I will honest with you, I don’t fully understand this argument that you have made previously, and you make now. I am not trying to be evasive or daft, I honestly dont understand where you are coming from.The objections you make towards the sources I have brought, seems to be the same objections I can bring towards what you consider to be the Gospel. But let me address your comment below, in the blue font. And perhaps the next comment you can take it step by step:

    Thanks for the response(yw). I suppose I should have been more clear on my claim. There is no source (define source pls)  refuting that Jesus was crucified that dates back to the original events or within the life time of those who eye-witnessed it.(Can you show me the sources that claim he was crucified in the first place, then we can look at sources which refute it. Are you claiming the Bible can be used as a source???)

    This is important because, as we both know, legends develop over time so the closer a source is to the actual events, the more likely it is to be true.(Agreed)

    The claims such as you cited seem to just pop out of nowhere and are unsupported  (Church father Iraeneus records them. So such groups did exist, which is the point I was making by brining it up. So by your standards of accepting the Church fathers, you would have to agree that such groups existed as early as the first century if Iraenus is recording this in the early second Now whether you view these groups as heretics, is a different story. ) They are late, they are rare, they are unfounded, they are not by eyewitnesses (what do you mean by eyewitnesses?,since the Bible recorded that someone observed something it should be considered as gospel as the idiom goes) (nor do they claim to be), and they do not claim to be writing for historical purpose (such as Luke or Josephus). Even by your own standards, they are not reliable sources. (Agreed,  I say the claims are just as reliable as the gospel and church father quotiations you hold to be true, which is not very reliable )

    Furthermore, these claims, as far as I know, all come out of Gnosticism, which was already threatening the church at the end of the first century as seen by the later books of the NT. It would make sense that Gnosticism would start to be incorporated into the beliefs of some Christians, especially at later dates, which would require the rejection of some parts of the Bible in order to support the Gnostic beliefs. (Iraenus recorded this in the second century, so the belief already did exist at that time)

    Can we agree that there is no reliable evidence for the claim that Simon of Cyrene was crucified in Jesus’ place?( ‘Im not trying to disagree for the sake of disagring, but the point I am making is the the belief that Simon of Cyrene died in place of Jesus should be just as reliable as making the claim that Jesus died on the cross)

    BTW , here is a good article which I copied and pasted and put on my blog a long time ago:

    https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/03/17/reasons-to-question-the-historicity-of-the-crucifixion/

    Again lets do this step by step.  You are making multiple points in one sentence, and I comend you on your writing style. It’s difficult to address so many points you have made though. So ya, lets try this again…..

     

     

     

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Hi AbdurRahman, thanks again for the response. Is English your first language? I assumed it was because of they way you write, but your comment about writing style makes me question this. Anyway, I will try to do better about keeping things short and clear.

    Just so there is no misunderstanding, here is what I believe the evidence points to, and it is what I will defend unless I see better evidence for a different position. I believe that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are the four gospels, written by the people whose names are on them. The gospel of Mark is Peter’s eyewitness account as was written by his scribe and companion, Mark. Acts was written by Luke as a follow-up to his gospel. The letters traditionally ascribed to Paul (Romans, 1 & 2 Cor, Gal, Eph, Phil, Col, 1 & 2 Thess, 1 & 2 Tim, Titus, and Philemon) were actually written by Paul (some through the use of a scribe). The author of Hebrews is unknown, James and Jude were written by Jesus’s brothers, 1 & 2 Peter were written by Peter (possibly with a scribe), and 1-3 John and Revelation were all written by the apostle John. I believe these are all first hand accounts of what happened (except Luke’s books and some of what Paul says) and were all written between 40 and 100 AD. These are all the books that I consider to be the NT and the true Word of God and other than a handful of verses, which we are aware of, the NT we have now is an accurate reconstruction of the original writings.

    Like I said, I believe this because of the evidence (I didn’t grow up as a Christian), and would be happy to discuss this evidence piece by piece.

    But anyway, back to the information about Simon of Cyrene and why it’s not reliable to believe he was crucified in Jesus’s place. The NT was written by people who lived with and spent time with Jesus, they witnessed his crucifixion, saw Jesus alive after the resurrection (Paul, Luke, and author of Hebrews are exception, but they learned from the people who did and were accepted as reliable by those people), and they wrote what they saw within the lifetime of other witnesses that could have corrected their errors. Even though we don’t have the original writings, I agree with what the majority of historians say, which is that the writings were originally composed in the first century by eyewitnesses. Because of who wrote these books and when they were written, it is extremely unlikely for myth to have developed or for the story to have changed.

    Now, compare this to the sources that claim Simon died in Jesus’s place. The earliest recording of it is mentioned by Irenaeus about 150 years after the crucifixion. The people who made the claim were not eyewitnesses, don’t claim to be, and don’t claim to be relying on eyewitness accounts. They are merely asserting dogma without evidence for it. These claims are far enough removed in time for errors to develop whereas the NT was not written late enough for this to happen.

    I am trying to show that there are several criteria to show that the NT is a reliable source about the crucifixion and resurrection while beliefs that contradict the NT are not from reliable sources. They can easily be explained as myths that developed later. On the other hand, if you don’t actually think, based on the evidence, that Simon of Cyrene died in Jesus’ place, then isn’t it being a bit dishonest to imply it might have happened?

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  21. Hey Jay,

    Thanks for the reply.

    I was just mentioning in-passing that for the benefit of me, you and those that come across this blog; we should try to take it point by point.  It will be a more fruitful and productive aproach. I know its difficult. When I used to debate the trinity with Christians online, I had to constantly remind them not to “machine gun” Bible verses. We all tend to do bring up multiple points in one sentence or so, but again step by step is the best approach IMO. Therefore in this comment I will try to be as BRIEF as possible.

    You mentioned the following (my comments are in blue):

    Just so there is no misunderstanding, here is what I believe( Belief is an interesting word, hopefully in this context it is used as a figure of speech and not an actual assertion that you base your opinion that the Bible is historically reliable based off of blind-faith) the evidence points(disregard the previous comment, it seems we are going to get down to brass tacks) to, and it is what I will defend unless I see better evidence(define better evidence, perhaps we will get into that later on…) for a different position. I believe (again belief…) that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are the four gospels, written by the people whose names are on them( Who are Matthew, Mark, Luke and John? Do we have their . The gospel of Mark is Peter’s eyewitness account as was written by his scribe and companion, Mark. Acts was written by Luke as a follow-up to his gospel. The letters traditionally ascribed to Paul (Romans, 1 & 2 Cor, Gal, Eph, Phil, Col, 1 & 2 Thess, 1 & 2 Tim, Titus, and Philemon) were actually written by Paul (some through the use of a scribe). The author of Hebrews is unknown, James and Jude were written by Jesus’s brothers, 1 & 2 Peter were written by Peter (possibly with a scribe), and 1-3 John and Revelation were all written by the apostle John. I believe(again belief…) these are all first hand accounts of what happened (except Luke’s books and some of what Paul says) and were all written between 40 and 100 AD. These are all the books that I consider to be the NT and the true Word of God and other than a handful of verses, which we are aware of, the NT we have now is an accurate reconstruction of the original writings. (Again, like you have often referred to in this paragraph. This is all a “belief’. I understand you take the Bible to be the word of God , despite of the disucssion we have had previously.)

    Like I said, I believe this because of the evidence (I didn’t grow up as a Christian), and would be happy to discuss this evidence piece by piece. (This is what I was hoping we could get into I understand now, the previous paragraph is you stating what you hold to be true because of the proofs and evidences, which are yet to be revealed…..)

    But anyway, back to the information about Simon of Cyrene and why it’s not reliable to believe he was crucified in Jesus’s place. The NT was written by people who lived with and spent time with Jesus, they witnessed his crucifixion, saw Jesus alive after the resurrection( evidence? Just because it says so) (Paul, Luke, and author of Hebrews are exception, but they learned from the people who did and were accepted as reliable by those people), and they wrote what they saw within the lifetime of other witnesses that could have corrected their errors( ( evidence? ) . Even though we don’t have the original writings, I agree with what the majority of historians say, which is that the writings were originally composed in the first century by eyewitnesses(source?). Because of who wrote these books and when they were written , it is extremely unlikely for myth to have developed or for the story to have changed.

    Now, compare this to the sources that claim Simon died in Jesus’s place. The earliest recording of it is mentioned by Irenaeus about 150 years after the crucifixion(So let me understand this and correct me if I am wrong. It’s okay to use the Church Father and their quotations to confirm the Bible  (As Wallace often says with pride, that we can reconstruct the Bible many times over just with church father quotation.) But the same Church Fathers, who mention heretical groups that existed around that time and before, we have to question their writings? If that is not the point your making but the fact that the writing comes from 150 AD and it being late, the fact that Iraenus is writing about it now shows that this group most probably existed in the first century if not at least in the early second centuryThe people who made the claim were not eyewitnesses, don’t claim to be and don’t claim to be relying on eyewitness accounts(We don’t have all of their writings so, we don’t know what they claimed or did not claim. Moreover you claim you have ‘eyewitness accounts’ , again just because the Bible says so. We dont know the authors of these books, their biographers, and more importantly whether they can be attributed to them .) They are merely asserting dogma without evidence for it. These claims are far enough removed in time for errors to develop whereas the NT was not written late enough for this to happen. (If we dont have a complete NT using both Church father quotations and biblical manuscripts until the 4th century, how can we discount a group that existed before the compilation of the Bible.)

    I am trying to show that there are several criteria to show that the NT is a reliable source (You allude to evidences, but do not bring them up. How can I agree with you on a point you have not fully articulated in the first place? ) about the crucifixion and resurrection while beliefs that contradict the NT are not from reliable source( Again how can we take the NT to be a reliable source in the first place?) . They can easily be explained as myths that developed later. On the other hand, if you don’t actually think, based on the evidence, that Simon of Cyrene died in Jesus’ place, then isn’t it being a bit dishonest to imply it might have happened? ( I maintain that the  reliability of Simon of Cyrene dying on the Cross is just a reliable as Jesus dying on the cross. Both being very unreliable.)

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  22. Hey AbdurRahman, Just a couple quick comments up front to answer your questions, then a few questions to see how to best answer your other points.

    When I say “I believe,” I am saying “I think it is true.” When I said “better evidence,” I was referring to the overall weight of the evidence, which includes the strength of evidence and the amount of evidence.

    Also, regarding the writings of Irenaeus, I accept them as authentic and reliable. What I I was trying to point out is that the people he was writing against did not have reliable evidence for their beliefs. Does that make sense? This point leads me to a few questions regarding what you believe and what you accept as evidence.

    Do you accept the writings of the early church fathers as evidence for the reliability of the Bible? If not, why? Would you accept Christian account for the resurrection if there were a chain linking these beliefs to early sources? Do you automatically discount NT writers as unreliable because they were Christians? If so, does the same reasoning apply to the Qur’an and Hadiths?

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Hey AbdurRahman, Just a couple quick comments up front to answer your questions, then a few questions to see how to best answer your other points.(Hey Jay, No Problem)

    When I say “I believe,” I am saying “I think it is true.” When I said “better evidence,” I was referring to the overall weight of the evidence, which includes the strength of evidence and the amount of evidence. ( Ok, perhaps we can get into this evidence. but I leave the direction of our conversation to you)

    Also, regarding the writings of Irenaeus, I accept them as authentic and reliable. What I I was trying to point out is that the people he was writing against did not have reliable evidence for their beliefs. Does that make sense?(How do you know if they did or did not have reliable evidence? All we have is an allusion to their existence by Irenaeus? Moreover I don’t know the evidence you have for your belief, so how do you expect me to compare your ‘reliable’ evidence, when you haven’t provided it in the first place. So far, at the moment, an allusion to a “heretical group” seems just as reliable as a narraive that you believe in.)

    This point leads me to a few questions regarding what you believe and what you accept as evidence.

    Do you accept the writings of the early church fathers as evidence for the reliability of the Bible? If not, why?

    The writings of the Church Fathers should not be trusted for numerous reasons:

    (1) Their Heretical beliefs which go against what is considered regular Christian doctrine. How can we rely on them to quote the Bible with any accuracy but reject them when they bring up their heretical beleifs. Seems like a double standard.

    https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/08/06/can-the-heretical-church-fathers-be-trusted/

    (2) The value of the apostolic fathers quotes are of very little value:

    Vincent Taylor: “Until about A.D. 150 the quotations are of little value for textual purposes.” [13]

    Frederic George Kenyon: “Quotations from the New Testament are found in the earliest writers of the sub-apostolic age, but they are so scanty as to be of little service for our present purpose.”[14]

    A. T. Robertson: “Little help is gained from the Greek Apostolic Fathers for the text.”[15]

    Bruce Metzger: “The Apostolic Fathers seldom make express citations from New Testament writings.”[16]

    Marvin R. Vincent: “The Apostolic Fathers are of little value for patristic quotation, since they do not so much quote as blend the language of the New Testament with their own.”[17]

    William L. Petersen: “It is clear that the vast majority of passages in the Apostolic Fathers for which one can find likely parallels in the New Testament have deviations from our present, critically reconstructed New Testament text. It must be emphasized that the vast majority of these deviations are not minor (e.g., differences in spelling or verb tense), but major (a completely new context, a substantial interpolation or omission, a conflation of two entirely separate ideas and/or passages).” [18]

    Caspar René Gregory professes, despite his apologetic tone, that “the very earliest of the Christian writers did not make a point of quoting the New Testament with any precision.”[19]

    ————–

    (13) Vincent Taylor, The Text of the New Testament, A Short Introduction, London: Macmillan, 1961, p.40 ↑

    (14) Frederic George Kenyon, Handbook to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament, p.209

    (15)A. T. Robertson, An Introduction to the Textual Criticism of the New Testament, Tennessee: Broadman Press, 1925, p.134 ↑

    (16) Bruce Metzger, The Canon of the New Testament, Its Origin, Development, and Significance, p.40 ↑

    (17)See Marvin R. Vincent, A History of the Textual Criticism of the New Testament, New York: Macmillan Company, 1899, p.38 ↑

    (18) William L. Petersen, “Textual Traditions Examined: What the Text of the Apostolic Fathers tells us about the Text of the New Testament in the Second Century,” in Andrew F. Gregory and Christopher M. Tuckett, eds. The Reception of the New Testament in the Apostolic Fathers, New York: Oxford University Press, 2005, p.33 ↑

    (19) Caspar René Gregory, Canon and Text of the New Testament, New York: Charles Scribner, 1907, p.425 ↑

    (3) A certain comment on Ehrman’s Blog I want to share:

    I read a Christian article once saying that all the verses in the New Testament were quoted by early Church fathers hence therefore this proves that the New Testament is in its original form (his argument not mine). Any thoughts?

    That’s what my posts were on! The problems are that the NT is not quoted extensively in *early* church fathers, that the fathers all quote the NT in different ways, that even within the fathers’ quotations there are variations for this or that verse quoted, and that we don’t actually have the fathers’ writings either, but only later manuscripts in which their own words have also been changed. Almost everyone who makes this argument has never actually worked with the Father’s texts. (The first father to quote the NT extensively in Greek is Origen; I wrote a book on his quotations of John)

    https://ehrmanblog.org/church-fathers-who-quote-the-new-testament-for-members/

    Would you accept Christian account for the resurrection if there were a chain linking these beliefs to early sources?(If you were to establish a clear chain from accurate and trustworthy eye witnesses to now, making sure we know who all the people are i.e. biographies , whether they met,etc. Basically a clear Isnad as we say in Islam, and not just one chain but many chains. Moreover the accounts have to line up. If all of this is correct, then I would accept that from the very beginning there were christian groups who BELIEVED the resurrection of Jesus occurred from Day 1. However you don’t have that. There are already discrepancies in the account, for example, let us examine the following verse:

     And they went out and fled from the tomb, for trembling and astonishment had seized them, and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.

    This is the correct ending in Mark which ends on chapter 16 verse 8. According to this ending, the women said NOTHING to anyone, yet Mark manages to record it? Did the women tell Mark, Yes or No? There is already a discrepancy in the first link. This is why scribes added to the text they wanted to take care of what they thought to be a theological/doctrinal oversight. ) Do you automatically discount NT writers as unreliable because they were Christians?(No.) If so, does the same reasoning apply to the Qur’an and Hadiths?

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  24. My thoughts on the church fathers quoting the NT is that it adds to the credibility of the NT. It doesn’t matter if they are quoting it exactly or extensively. By their quoting it at all, it shows there were aware of it, accepted it as scripture, and agreed with certain doctrines. The main thing, as I’ve said before, is whether or not Jesus died and was resurrected. Everything else is secondary. So the question we need to answer is, did they church fathers believe Jesus died and was resurrected and where did that belief come from (which is where I plan on going next).

    What is your thought on the reliability of eyewitness testimonies? I ask because you seem to have an unrealistic expectation. If they were too similar, wouldn’t you just accuse them of having collaborated with each other and made up a story, hence, not being reliable. In eyewitness testimonies, sometimes details can get confused or missed, but that doesn’t mean the whole account is unreliable. The main point, especially if the accounts agree on it, is still reliable. In the case of Christianity, the earliest sources we have (gospels and epistles) all agree that Jesus died and rose from the dead. There is no disagreement on this. The gospels admit that the Jews claimed the disciples stole the body, but this doesn’t explain the post resurrection appearances, nor did they ever actually present the body so it was pure conspiracy theory speculation.

    Anyway, let me see if I understand your view correctly. You seem to accept that they earliest sources claim Jesus died and rose from the dead, but you just don’t accept them as reliable. Is that correct? Similarly, do you have any earlier sources that claim otherwise?

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  25. Thanks Jay,

    Comments in blue:

    My thoughts on the church fathers quoting the NT is that it adds to the credibility of the NT. It doesn’t matter if they are quoting it exactly or extensively. By their quoting it at all, it shows there were aware of it, accepted it as scripture, and agreed with certain doctrines. The main thing, as I’ve said before, is whether or not Jesus died and was resurrected. Everything else is secondary. So the question we need to answer is, did they church fathers believe Jesus died and was resurrected and where did that belief come from (which is where I plan on going next). (With all due respect, I was hoping that with all the points I have made above that we could agree with the conclusion that the Church Fathers and their writings can not be used in our conversations as they hold no credibility.)

    What is your thought on the reliability of eyewitness testimonies? (That is the thing, and it comes down what YOU consider to be an eyewitness testimony. For example, let’s use the common usage of the term eye witness. If an eye witness observed a crime, but we don’t know who the eye witnesses (i.e. their bio), we don’t have a DIRECT written or verbal account but rather an account written many years later who claimed they have heard it from him, and they have no chain to back up their claim.  As a police detective would you be comfortable using that evidence)

    I ask because you seem to have an unrealistic expectation. If they were too similar, wouldn’t you just accuse them of having collaborated with each other and made up a story, hence, not being reliable( That is why we have to look at the ISNAD or chain of the narration as well. Perhaps these two stories may have the same chain, where one of the links in the chain is the same person known to be a known tiar). In eyewitness testimonies, sometimes details can get confused or missed, but that doesn’t mean the whole account is unreliable. 

    The main point, especially if the accounts agree on it, is still reliable. In the case of Christianity, the earliest sources we have (gospels and epistles) all agree that Jesus died and rose from the dead (The ones you consider to be cannon) There is no disagreement on this. The gospels admit that the Jews claimed the disciples stole the body, but this doesn’t explain the post resurrection appearances, nor did they ever actually present the body so it was pure conspiracy theory speculation.

    Anyway, let me see if I understand your view correctly. You seem to accept that they earliest sources claim Jesus died and rose from the dead, but you just don’t accept them as reliable. Is that correct? ( No, I am saying that first show me an account that we can agree on that comes from that period of time. And then we can talk about reliability) . Similarly, do you have any earlier sources that claim otherwise? (Again, Simon of Cyrene….Until you can show me superior evidence for your belief, other claims are still to be conisdered)

    —–

    I wanted to share this with you, this is an excerpt from Professor Jonathan Brows dissertation entitled : THE CANONIZATION OF AL-BUKHARl AND MUSLIM: THE FORMATION AND FUNCTION OF THE SUNNI HADITH CANON

    Taken from here: 

    https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2016/09/05/hadith-collection-and-criticism/

    http://www.mypercept.co.uk/the_canonization_of_al-bukhari.pdf

    He mentions the following:

    Indeed, the authority ofhis canon, Irenaeus claimed, stemmed from its authenticity. He had chosen his “four-formed gospel” because they were the only books supposedly written by eyewitnesses ofthe events they described.74 Like Irenaeus, Muslim scholars have been preoccupied with questions of authenticity. The traditions ofthe Prophet were certainly subject to interpretation as scholars applied them to questions oflaw, morality and doctrine, but it was the question of authenticity that was paramount in their collection and criticism. The more authentic the Prophetic report, the more authoritative it was. In the elaboration ofthe faith, and certainly in inter-school polemics, “interpretation is a function of authentication (al-ta ‘wil far ( alii al-ithbiit).” While Irenaeus’s canon required a canonical lens for proper viewing, for HadIth collections the kanon oftruth was the canonical books themselves. A collection deemed an authentic repository for the Prophet’s hermeneutic authority was the tool through which that authority could be employed decisively in the further elaboration ofIslam. For Kermode the canon is licensed for exegesis; for Muslims a canonical1)adIth collection was licensed for common use.

     Hopefully this provides a glimpse into the difference of what we view to be authentic or not, I will provide more passages as I read more of his dissertation. (something I started recently)

     

     

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  26. I suppose now would be a good time to get into the evidence for the historicity of the NT. 🙂 You seem like you already have a strong knowledge base in this area, so what is it about the evidence that you reject? Specifically, why do you dispute traditional authorship? Since you reject the reliability of the NT, what is your view on how Christianity got started, who started it, and when did this happen?

    I would like to discuss the evidence for the historical reliability with you in my next comment, but don’t want to waste my time talking about specific details that you may not reject. I think this is important, because their is so much evidence and detail in the evidence that the post could get very long. Thanks again.

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  27. Hey Jay

    I hope your enjoying your weekend. Comments in Blue below:

    I suppose now would be a good time to get into the evidence for the historicity of the NT (nice).  You seem like you already have a strong knowledge base in this area, so what is it about the evidence that you reject?(I’ll be honest I haven’t really researched this topic or the arguments people bring. From a cursory review, I would assume your argument would involve bringing the NT itself and perhaps some “Non-christian Historical records” to prove the Crucifixion. So whatever you bring, would be my first foray into the topic) Specifically, why do you dispute traditional authorship? (Again, we don’t have the original as Bart Ehrman says “Copies of copies of copies….” .  How can I not dispute traditional authorship? The fact that we don’t have a complete manuscript until the fourth century shows that you can’t claim there was a clear-cut gospel from the first place (if we were to assume paleography as a valid science, curious as to why manuscripts aren’t radio-carbonated , but that is a discussion for another time) For a religious tradition that relies on writings (and has no oral tradition), I am forced to conclude that we don’t have an original Bible. This among other reasons as I stated above. I don’t mean to rehash any arguments I have already made. But I will mention one more/new thing ( a recent revelation/insight/epiphany if you will). I think all of our differences boils down to Muslim Scholarship vs. Christian Priesthood. In Islam, our whole religious tradition was available to the people from Day 1. Both the Qur’an and our hadith literature. Even if they did not read or write, they could easily memorize it. And some people chose to study more and so they were more learned, But it was never restricted to the people.You don’t have that with the Bible, its very nature did not allow it to be memorized (not in the original Aramaic which is lost, to the Greek, Latin or even the English), and for the vast majority of Christian history, Christians were not literate enough to read it , even if they had it) Since you reject the reliability of the NT, what is your view on how Christianity got started, who started it, and when did this happen? ( Some people have theories and make arguments. Paul started it, it was Constantine…etc. I don’t know to tell you the truth. Moreover by Christianity I assume you mean what you believe as a Christian, then we can agree that started way past the first three centuries as you have no evidence that your specific belief(or brand of Christianity) exsited before then. One last point to consider, is Christian is not a Christ-given name. So the very nature of asking “when did Christianity start” is appropriate as to we are talking about what Christianity is and not so much what Jesus taught) I would like to discuss the evidence for the historical reliability with you in my next comment, but don’t want to waste my time talking about specific details that you may not reject. I think this is important, because their is so much evidence and detail in the evidence that the post could get very long. Thanks again.( No Problem,  Jay, as usual I always enjoy the discourse , I leave the direction of the conversation in your hands:) )

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  28. I will get to the evidence, but I just wanted to make a quick comment on a small point. There was an oral tradition in Christianity. I only said that I wasn’t sure if it was the same as Muslims, but there definitely was an oral tradition.

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  29. Take your time Jay, no rush.

    The reason I bring it up, is that during that time of Jesus literacy rate among the Christians was probably 5%. For the sake of argument lets say the same was true for Muslims; if we were to compare just oral traditions between both religions, which one would you say was more accessible to the people? Which people could claim to have their book memorized and preserved in their hearts and minds, and not just anecdotal stories and passages taught by the priests to the people?

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  30. Sorry for such a late response. I started class this week so my life’s been pretty crazy this week.

    I wouldn’t say the Bible stories are anecdotal. OT passages were memorized word for word by males in the few years of schooling they went to and the students could not even speak on a verse until they had a verse memorized perfectly. The NT was then the transmission of actual events and spread by the eye-witnesses of those events. I don’t know if Christians or Muslims would have had their book memorized better, but I don’t see that as the issue.

    What seems more important is whether the Christians memorized it well enough to record it accurately when they wrote it down, which I think is nearly certain to be the case for several reason. First, they had an oral culture so they had great memory capacity and valued the reliable retelling of stories. Second, stories don’t change that big, that quickly. From the research that is out there, it takes 2-3 generations for myths to start seeping into the stories and the entire NT was written within 1-2 generations. Psychologically, imagination inflation and false memories don’t happen with big, life-changing events that occur in adulthood and are frequently retold, which is what happened with the writers of the NT. Those things happen to events that happened a long time ago and are recalled infrequently.

    Third, and perhaps most important, the people of that time passed on information in ways that were easily memorable such through stories and creeds. The best example is 1 Cor 15:3-7, which is pretty strongly accepted as an authentic early Christian creed. Most scholars date it to have been formulated within 5 years of the resurrection, if not less than 2 years after the resurrection. Here’s more detailed information on this passage if you’re interested. https://www.bethinking.org/did-jesus-rise-from-the-dead/the-resurrection-of-jesus-and-the-witness-of-paul

    As it pertains to this verse, I am interested to know if you accept that Paul was the real author of 1 Corinthians? If I understand correctly, even Ehrman accepts this. Regardless of your thoughts on the author, what are your thoughts about the authenticity of this creed?

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  31. Sorry for such a late response. I started class this week so my life’s been pretty crazy this week. ( No problem, I also apologize for my late response)

    I wouldn’t say the Bible stories are anecdotal. OT passages were memorized word for word by males in the few years of schooling they went to and the students could not even speak on a verse until they had a verse memorized perfectly. The NT was then the transmission of actual events and spread by the eye-witnesses of those events ( You mentioned these “witnesses” numerous times, and I often ask the same question: How do you know you actually have their writings and not some embellished form? Moreover from these witnesses, how come you only have only a few remaining from 500 mentioned in 1 Cor 15. Shouldn’t you have a lot more testimonies available? So just to reiterate, you only have a few from the 500, and from those you dont even know if you can authentically attribute them to their authors. ) . I don’t know if Christians or Muslims would have had their book memorized better, but I don’t see that as the issue.

    What seems more important is whether the Christians memorized it well enough to record it accurately when they wrote it down, which I think is nearly certain to be the case for several reason. First, they had an oral culture so they had great memory capacity and valued the reliable retelling of stories.(Without a verbatim memorization of the NT, you are left with the opprunity for embleshiment to occur like a game of “chinese whispers’, with each round allowing more and more of the narrative to change)

    Second, stories don’t change that big, that quickly. From the research that is out there(source pls), it takes 2-3 generations for myths to start seeping into the stories and the entire NT was written within 1-2 generations. Psychologically, imagination inflation and false memories don’t happen with big, life-changing events that occur in adulthood and are frequently retold, which is what happened with the writers of the NT. Those things happen to events that happened a long time ago and are recalled infrequently.

    Third, and perhaps most important, the people of that time passed on information in ways that were easily memorable such through stories and creeds. The best example is 1 Cor 15:3-7, which is pretty strongly accepted as an authentic early Christian creed. Most scholars date it to have been formulated within 5 years of the resurrection, if not less than 2 years after the resurrection. Here’s more detailed information on this passage if you’re interested. https://www.bethinking.org/did-jesus-rise-from-the-dead/the-resurrection-of-jesus-and-the-witness-of-paul

    As it pertains to this verse, I am interested to know if you accept that Paul was the real author of 1 Corinthians? If I understand correctly, even Ehrman accepts this. Regardless of your thoughts on the author, what are your thoughts about the authenticity of this creed? (Before I answer this question, I would need to know what is the earliest manuscript or Church Father Quotations which mentions this paticular verse? )

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  32. GomerOzDubar says:

    Nice cordial discussion. Excellent question asking ‘what is the earliest manuscript or Church Father (—>manuscript date) quotations?” It is important to keep in mind the claims of quoting Church father are backtracked and back-placed material and often time the authors leveraged themselves by using name of historicity. For example, Josephus, Tertullion etc… are manuscripts employing the names of character who lived 1000 years prior and both Josephus and Tertullion epigraphy surfaces. 9-11th century CE.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks Gomer,

      I have a question: Is there a list on the Internet showing when these manuscripts of Church Father writings have ‘popped up’? (i.e. when they were discovered)

      When Christians claim that they have writing of a particular Church Father from a particular century, does this mean they have this writing from that century or a copy of that writing found in later times(i.e. medieval times most likely)?

      Some may find this fact unpalatable, but I think that without actual writings (which can be radiocarbon dated) from that century, one could easily make the assertion that these writings could be medieval forgeries (i.e. that means that the extant writings come more than a millennia later!!!!)

      Liked by 1 person

  33. Hi AbdurRahman. I appreciate your patience and kind reminders. I haven’t forgotten about our conversation and have enjoyed it, but I just haven’t been able to give as much time to it as I would like. I am learning Hebrew this semester and languages don’t come easy for me so that has been the central focus of my life, even over my other classes.

    I’m not sure what I can say at this point without getting into overbearing details, which you already suggested you’re not a fan of when I tried to post multiple Bible verses on the Trinity. Correct me if I’m wrong, but it seems that your position is that there has been a massive conspiracy to create and support the myth of Jesus’ resurrection, a conspiracy lasting thousands of years and has included countless number of people.

    In order to make this conspiracy successful, these people would have had to successfully fake documents from hundreds of years prior to their own lives by getting the historical details correct and agreeing with people before and after them who lived in different places and had different motivations.

    I appreciate your level of skepticism, but it outpaces your knowledge in this area. You might consider reading The Historical Reliability of the New Testament and/or Jesus and the Eyewitnesses. I am aware that together these books are about 1500 pages of fairly technical reading, but I think if you want to hold such a high level of skepticism, you need to be reading these kinds of works. Jesus and the Eyewitnesses specifically addresses your request for a source regarding oral tradition in my last comment.

    The Resurrection of Jesus: A New Historiographical Approach might also be something you’re interested in, but I think it more ore less covers the content in the first book.

    As much as I would like to continue this conversation, if I am being honest, I cannot guarantee I will have the time. If you would like to continue talking, perhaps you could take some time to explain why you think Islam is the true religion. To give you an idea of a good place to start, how do you know that Muhammad received the Quran from Allah and it wasn’t just his own thoughts or the thoughts of a demon? I know you mentioned some miracles, but do those hold up to scrutiny when evaluated realistically and consistently?

    Thanks again.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Jay,

      Nice to hear back from you. Take your time.  No worries, I hope you do well in your studies. Would like to have discussions on the word Elohim and Echad, if you get the chance laughing

      I know I said I would prefer not getting into the nitty gritty. However I would rather do that as opposed to being referred to books on the subject. So if you want to, and you have the time, we can do so.

      As for your statement that I am claiming this to be a “conspiracy”, I wouldn’t use that word, I would say it is more of a CORRUPTION and there are numerous corruptions (other than the resurrection) both in terms of doctrine, and religious practices. Two examples that come to mind are the  Trinity(foreign to the OT https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/02/25/is-there-a-trinity-in-the-old-testament/) and Christmas (https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/10/02/the-plain-truth-about-christmas-by-herbert-w-armstrong/). You can see from these two examples that greco-roman paganism has crept into your religion has corrupted it from its true message.

      Now you mentioned somewhere in the previous comment , that Paul has stated that there are 500 witnesses to the resurrection of Christ. If you could find me at least ONE from these 500, I would be interested in reading their account. (https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2017/09/23/where-are-the-testimonies-of-the-500-witnesses-in-1-corinthians-156/)

      You have asked some good questions at the end. In regards to the first statement, as a Christian you could not claim that the Qur’an is a satanic book, and I have written a post about that (https://islamicarchives.wordpress.com/2016/10/27/satan-and-the-quran/

      As for your question regarding miracles, the greatest miracle we have is the Qur’an, the preserved word of God. There are other numerous miracles, but the fact remains that you and I weren’t there. The same way you and I weren’t there to witness the parting of the Red sea , or Jesus turning water into wine, etc. These are all TEMPORAL miracles, they are restricted to that time and place. The reason we believe in them is because of our faith, but we can’t base our faith off of them. While the Qur’an and our religious traditions is a miracle for all, till the end of time. 

       Thanks for getting back to me, take your time in replying. 

       

       

       

      Liked by 1 person

  34. Once again, sorry for the delay. I was wholly unprepared for how busy I was this semester. It wasn’t the most hours I have taken, but when added to all the other things I had in my life this semester, it was definitely my busiest semester in seminary. Hebrew was a big reason for that. What are your questions on Elohim and Echad? I may be able to answer them for you, depending on the depth you are looking for.

    I still don’t know Hebrew very well, but one thing I learned that I never knew before and I think you might find applicable, is that the meaning of Hebrew words varies a lot (which I suspect you know), but specifically, they often vary in odd or unexpected ways when in different forms. I would recommend buying or checking out from a library the Brown Driver-Briggs (BDB) Hebrew and English Lexicon. It’s the standard source used and will give better answers than you will likely find online (which are likely paraphrases or misunderstandings of the BDB).

    I understand why you wouldn’t want to read 1500+ pages of technical resources. That’s a lot of work. I only suggest it because you raise a lot of good points, but they have been answered in great detail by these sources if you are truly interested in minding the answer. More popular level works don’t go into these details because 1.) they are appealing to a wider audience that isn’t asking these deeper questions and 2.) the overall case doesn’t really depend on these finer points.

    I wonder if it might be beneficial to use C. Behan McCullagh’s list of factors historians typically use in testing a historical hypothesis (from page 233 of Reasonable Faith)? This will allow us to compare our views directly and consistently so we can see which hypothesis better explains all the evidence. The criteria are:
    1) The hypothesis, together with other true statements, must imply further statements describing present, observable data.
    2) The hypothesis must have greater explanatory scope (that is, imply a greater variety of observable data) than rival hypotheses.
    3) The hypothesis must have greater explanatory power (that is, make the observable data more probable) than rival hypotheses.
    4) The hypothesis must be more plausible (that is, be implied by a greater variety of accepted truths, and its negation implied by fewer accepted truths) than rival hypotheses.
    5) The hypothesis must be less ad hoc (that is, include fewer new suppositions about the past not already implied by existing knowledge) than rival hypotheses.
    6) The hypothesis must be disconfirmed by fewer accepted beliefs (that is, when conjoined with accepted truths, imply fewer false statements) than rival hypotheses.
    7) The hypothesis must so exceed its rivals in fulfilling conditions (2)–(6) that there is little chance of a rival hypothesis, after further investigation, exceeding it in meeting these conditions.

    What are your thoughts? Want to give it a try?

    Liked by 1 person

    • No Problem Jay, I hope you get Straight A’s cool.

      It’s amazing, I was just thinking about you and our debates yesterday, and here you are 🙂 . 

      As for Elohim and Echad, I was saying that tongue-in-cheek. tongue-outChristians often claim that Elohim and Echad represent an actual plurality and a compound unity, respectively. It is an interesting debate I have had with Christians through the years. So yeah, just mentioning it out of jest. Though if you would like to tackle the subject, I would be interested to see what you have to say….. 

      To be honest, I’m not sure how to approach these “factors used in testing a historical hypothesis” which you mentioned. How can I use a standard which is arbitrary? How many historians have agreed to this standard, is there a scholarly consensus on these hypothesis, etc.?

       Nonetheless, if we look at  C. Behan McCullagh’s own words, we find that 

      “The hypothesis that God exists and cared about Jesus is of questionable plausibility; the hypothesis that he wanted to raise Jesus from the dead and reveal him to the disciples and others is almost entirely ad hoc” (McCullagh 2012: 46).

      C. Behan McCullagh’ (2012) ‘The Resurrection of Jesus: Explanation or Interpretation?’ Southeastern Theological Review Vol.3 No. 1: 41-53

      So I’m not sure bringing him up and his criteria, would support your case.

      Jay, before I end this comment I have to say as always I enjoy conversing you. You are respectful, patient and have a kind demeanor. I hope I have reciprocated this in our conversation.

      I am  happy you have not forgotten about me. Please take your time and hope you do well in your studies, and make our discussions your last priority to deal with.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Is there some other criteria you think would be useful. We can add in an atheist (or progressive Christian) view to compare to see how that stacks up, too. The point is that we lobby attacks back and forth and have a fun, friendly conversation, but if we are not comparing our ideas, we’ll just go round and round in circles. Maybe we can simplify the criteria.

        We can list the relevant facts surrounding the resurrection and then compare to see which view:
        1. Explains the most facts
        2. Is disconfirmed by the fewest facts
        3. Is most internally consistent
        4. Is least ad hoc (simplest or requires least additional theories)
        5. Is more coherent with other accepted facts

        If we have success focusing on the resurrection, we can apply the same method to Muhammad and the Quran.

        Liked by 1 person

  35. Hey Jay,

    I hope you are enjoying your time off with friends and family.

    A criteria…..hmmmm…I have an idea. What sort of criteria can you establish that would make it easy for someone to objectively differentiate between the Biblical story of Jesus vs. the Talmudic story of Jesus?

    Both groups claim that there particular work was written, maintained and is authentic to that time period. However one claims that he is the resurrected god. while the other group claims he is a bastard and died as a heretic.

    So, how do i differentiate between these two narratives?

    Or is it simply, majority rules?

    Liked by 1 person

  36. Sure Jay, but first what do you think of the Huffington Post Article?

    It’s interesting, that for more than 1000 years Christians have not had access to their holy scriptures, they were forbidden to read it.
    Even in the early 1900s the Catholic Church had forbidden the reading of scripture.

    All the codices you have , are from the medieval age. Both for the Greek NT and the Hebrew OT. I can now understand how some can make the claim that the modern Bible we have is nothing more than a medieval forgery.

    But let’s assume that the KJV is right from A to Z. Every story is correct, and that in every Christian home (from year 1 AD ), there was a leather-bound copy for the whole family to read.

    It wouldn’t help your case ONE BIT, literacy was 3%, and that was AMONG THE JEWS.

    So how you can bring so-called “criteria”, when your whole religious tradition was not accessible to the general public? You are relying on a small group of men to tell you what is the Bible and to tell you what is ‘History’!

    And this is the MAJOR difference between Islam and Christianity. Let’s assume the literacy rate was the same, nobody could read a book. Well, the Qur’an was being memorized from day 1. And it was being recited in all the mosques. The very nature of it , allowed that to happen. The same can not be said for either the OT or the NT.

    Apologizes for the long rant..

    Liked by 1 person

  37. Sorry for the delay. The e-mails to notify me of a response were being sent to my spam folder. Hopefully that problem is solved now.

    Regarding the Huffington Post article and what you’ve said regarding literacy, it’s all irrelevant. I think you’re grasping at straws to draw attention away from the central issue, which is whether or not Jesus was resurrected.

    Even if the Qur’an is perfectly accurate to the original, that does not mean its claims are true and same goes for the Bible. For both books, the Bible and the Qur’an, we need to consider what is the best explanation for the book’s claims: God, man, or some other supernatural entity. We do this by considering all the evidence and then comparing explanations for which is best. In this way, we don’t need to explain everything perfectly, but to go with the view that explains things the best since we recognize our limits in historical studies.

    So what do you think is the best explanation for the Christian claim that Jesus was resurrected?
    1.) He was crucified and resurrected
    2.) He was never crucified and died at some other time and place
    3.) He was crucified, but wasn’t resurrected
    4.) He never even existed and everything written about Him is myth

    Like

  38. You forgot one option: 🙂

    Option FIVE: He was never crucified and he is alive and well in heaven.

    4:157-And because of their saying: We slew the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, Allah’s messenger – they slew him not nor crucified him, but it appeared so unto them; and lo! those who disagree concerning it are in doubt thereof; they have no knowledge thereof save pursuit of a conjecture; they slew him not for certain.

    4:158- But Allah took him up unto Himself. Allah was ever Mighty, Wise.
    ————————————–

    And this was a test from God, as it is mentioned in our books of Tafsir : “All this was a test from Allah for His servants out of His wisdom.”

    The same way God’s tests people in the Old Testament, in a similar way:

    Jeremiah 4:10 Then I said, “Ah, Sovereign LORD, how completely you have deceived this people and Jerusalem by saying, ‘You will have peace,’ when the sword is at our throats.“

    2 Thessalonians 2:11-12King James Version (KJV)
    11 And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:
    12 That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness.

    Liked by 2 people

  39. Yep, I missed an option. Sorry about that, I should have known better.

    So just to be clear, your view is that Jesus was never killed or crucified, but was taken up to heaven as a living person? My view is option #1, that Jesus was crucified, killed, and then resurrected.

    Let’s compare the two views and see which option is better based on the evidence. Why don’t you give the evidence to support your view and I will give the evidence to support my view, then we can compare and contrast. Do you also want to lay out the evidence that would refute each other’s views or wait on that until we both post our supporting evidence first?

    Liked by 1 person

    • No worries Jay,

      Yes my view is the Qur’anic view that he was neither “killed nor crucified” and was taken up to heaven and will return to Earth, when God so wishes.

      Sure, let us compare. I’m guessing your going to bring up Josephus and others. I’ll wait for you to do so, then we can discuss. I’m hoping you don’t bring up the Bible and Church Father quotations, because I have already shown you that you don’t have them, but ‘so-called’ copies made many centuries later, which were restricted to a few and inaccessible to the masses.

      As for my evidence, the only evidence I have, is the preserved word of God (both verbally and textually), the Qur’an for all to read from the very beginning. One of the miracles of our Holy Book, which can not be said of any other religion , including the Book of Mormon(google lost 116 pages). I could bring up other accounts showing Simon of Cyrene was crucified and then we could discuss it. But I’m not going to do that.

      I was just thinking the other day,(not to stray too much from the conversation), but if you were to take every single holy book, every single doctrine taught by man, and all we had was the physical world around us, you would come to the conclusion of One God. Not no god, or many gods, or a triune god, But One God. for all mankind. And definitely you would not come to the doctrine of original sin, or salvation , etc. But One God, and that is the final take away message which Islam teaches.

      Apologizes for the long reply and my HUGE tangent, lol. I am actually going through a personal phase, where I am wrapping up all my research/discussion on comparative religion. I just have a few more posts left to make on my blog. I have done this for many years, and I have decided to “hang up my hat”. It’s time to seek new horizons and reach new heights. This blog will serve as my legacy for others to benefit from, inshAllah (God-willing) But of course, I enjoy conversing with you, and this will go on, as long as your interested and able.

      I end with some verses of the Qur’an of Surah 6:

      006.075 So also did We show Abraham the power and the laws of the heavens and
      the earth, that he might (with understanding) have certitude.
      006.076 When the night covered him over, He saw a star: He said: “This is my
      Lord.” But when it set, He said: “I love not those that set.”
      006.077 When he saw the moon rising in splendour, he said: “This is my Lord.” But
      when the moon set, He said: “unless my Lord guide me, I shall surely be among those
      who go astray.”
      006.078 When he saw the sun rising in splendour, he said: “This is my Lord; this is
      the greatest (of all).” But when the sun set, he said: “O my people! I am indeed free
      from your (guilt) of giving partners to God.
      006.079 “For me, I have set my face, firmly and truly, towards Him Who created the
      heavens and the earth, and never shall I give partners to God.”

      Like

    • *On a side note,just curious, Did Wallace confirm the authenticity of First-Century Mark? Ehrman claims it is not authentic, and they are being very hush hush about it. This isn’t a taunt, but a serious inquiry into the matter.

      https://ehrmanblog.org/would-a-first-century-fragment-of-mark-matter/#comment-69211

      Like

  40. I’ll just respond quickly to the tangential items before getting into some of the evidence for the resurrection.

    Regarding the first century Mark fragment, I don’t think it matters. If it is a first century fragment, it would be one of several pieces of evidence that Mark was written in the first century, but the case doesn’t rest or fall on this fragment. There are several reasons supporting several views for why the people working on it have not made public conclusions yet.

    I agree that the physical universe around us can tell us there is one God, even that we need special revelation for original sin, the Trinity, salvation, etc. I would say that we can rule out all worldviews except Christianity, Judaism, and Islam based on nature (natural theology). Through the cosmological, teleological, and moral arguments, we can infer that God is timeless, spaceless, immaterial, extremely intelligent and powerful, personal, and all-good.

    As for the evidence, I will use the Bible, Josephus, and other ancient texts or artifacts merely as historical documents, not giving them any special preference that would not be used for reaching conclusions about other historical events. That the manuscripts/fragments are few, limited in number, and weren’t always accessible to the masses has almost no bearing on the authenticity of what these documents say. I will try to lay this out for you by the end of the weekend.

    Liked by 1 person

  41. Here are the sources (Authors) that claim Jesus was crucifixion or resurrected. The church fathers all probably say both, but I only looked to see if they mentioned one of them. Additionally, just because the sources say it happened, doesn’t mean it did, so the next step would be to show they are reliable sources. This would include things such as the criteria of embarrassment, dating methods, archaeological support, manuscript evidence, language analysis, etc. I’ve started to do that with the dating, which would I recognize requires more evidence to support. It’s a lot of information to do so, which is why I’ve recommended books on the subject. Additionally, there are no early reliable sources that reject both the crucifixion and resurrection, or at least the view that people thought Jesus was resurrected. The only sources for this are much later in history and not based on eye-witness accounts. Even Bart Ehrman says “The crucifixion of Jesus by the Romans is one of the most secure facts we have about his life.”
    https://ehrmanblog.org/why-was-jesus-killed-for-members/

    Biblical (48-100AD, were either eye-witnesses or spoke with eye-witnesses. Also, wrote within generation of resurrection and so could be corrected if erred)
    Matthew, Mark/Peter, Luke, John, Paul, and Hebrews Author all refer to Jesus being crucified and resurrected. Authors with multiple works (Paul, Luke, Peter, John) refer to these events several times

    Church Fathers
    Clement of Rome 88-99AD, refers to resurrection
    Ignatius AD 70-115, says Jesus was raised from the dead
    Polycarp 69-155 AD, says Jesus was resurrected
    Hegesippus 110-170 AD, said that James taught about and convinced people of resurrection
    Polycrates of Ephesus 130-196AD, says Jesus was resurrected
    Irenaeus died around 202AD, says Jesus was resurrected Tertullian 160-222 AD, refers to resurrection
    Theophilus of Antioch around 183AD, says Jesus was resurrected
    Hippolytus 170-235 AD, refers to resurrection
    Origen 185-254 AD, refers to resurrection

    Roman Sources:
    Thallus 52AD, says Jesus was crucified
    Tacitus 56-120 AD, says Jesus was crucified
    Mara Bar-Serapion 70 AD, says Jesus died for His beliefs
    Phlegon 80-140 AD, says was crucified under the reign of Tiberius Caesar and demonstrated his wounds after he was resurrected.
    Lucian of Samosata: 115-200 AD, says Jesus was crucified

    Jewish sources
    Josephus between 37-101 AD, says Jesus was crucified
    Babylonian Talmud 400-700 AD, says Jesus was hanged (reference to being hanged or put on a cross for crucifixion) on Passover

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your reply Jay, I really appreciate it especially with your busy schedule . Please do well in your Hebrew, would like to debate you on Elohim and Echad. lol, just joking . I just have a few points that I bring up regarding it. But I digress…..

      I just want to confirm are you trying to prove the crucifixion and resurrection or just the crucifixion.?

      If it is the latter, then I agree there was a crucifixion. Where we differ is that you think it was actually Jesus, where I say there is confusion and some thought it was actually Jesus (which now has become the majority position in “Christianity”), when it was not. This is the position I have and have maintained throughout our discourse/correspondence. If I have said otherwise, please let me know.

      Notice every non-christian source you mentioned , only refers to the crucifixion and not a resurrection. As for Phlegon, please show me the quote regarding his Resurrection, because I have not come across it.

      So how can you claim the Resurrection narrative when none of your non-christian sources admit it. You are basing this strictly off of HIGHLY questionable sources of the Bible and Church Father quotations, which I have already shown to be (on numerous occasions) can not be relied upon as trustworthy sources. Moreover if you submit this to be your evidence, then I submit “Simon of Cyrene” to be equally as valid. if not more, because in my narrative there is no mention of a Resurrection. (I know I said I wouldn’t ,bring up Simon of Cyrene , but I couldn’t resist)

      Also , tell me what you do when your own sources disagree with your Bible. Do you pick and choose what to accept? I submit this particular “contradiction” for your perusal:

      “Contrary to what Luke indicates, historians have long known from several ancient inscriptions, the Roman historian Tacitus, and the Jewish historian Josephus that Quirinius was not the governor of Syria until 6 C.E., fully ten years after Herod the Great died. If Jesus was born during the reign of Herod, then Quirinius was not the Syrian governor.”- From Bart Ehrman’s New Testamebt textbook.

      So tell me is the Bible correct or are your own ‘sources’ correct? Or should we stick to the criteria of “picking and choosing”?

      Like

  42. Thanks for your response. The sources I cited all say Jesus was crucified, not Simon or anyone else. The resurrection couldn’t happen unless Jesus was killed, so the two claims work together. The reason the Simon theory is not equally valid is because there is not equally valid evidence for it. The evidence for it comes late (100 years later), disagrees with the majority of other evidence (including non-Christian sources), and cannot be traced back to eye-witnesses. This is why we need to evaluate the sources and not just accept them as valid because they’re old.

    The non-Christian sources should not be expected to attest to the resurrection, at least not directly, otherwise they would be Christians. This is actually why Paul and James are Christians. Paul helped kill Christians, yet became one. Likewise, James also became a Christian after the resurrection. Moreover, we also need to consider biases or reasons for what they reported. The writers of the NT had no reason to make up the resurrection. They didn’t gain from it all, and in fact, it cost them greatly. Not only were they all martyred, except John who was tortured and excommunicated, but they all likely suffered social and monetary losses, too. They all scattered after the crucifixion, or were non-Christians, having no reason to invent the resurrection. Yet, they came to believe it and became stronger in their faith because of it, so much so that they were willing to tell embarrassing details about themselves or their friends in a commitment to the truth. The same cannot be said for the sources who leave out the resurrection. They had biases against Christians or reasons not to accept the resurrection. It’s easy to explain the fact that they did not write about the resurrection based on normal historical rules and psychological principles. It’s not so easy to explain why the NT writers would believe it or make it up or how Christianity blossomed unless it really happened.

    Phlegon is quoted by Africanus as saying “in the time of Tiberius Caesar, at full moon, there was a full eclipse of the sun from the sixth to the ninth hour.” (Chronography, 18:1) and again by Origen as saying “And with regard to the eclipse in the time of Tiberius Caesar, in whose reign Jesus appears to have been crucified, and the great earthquakes which then took place … ” (Against Celsus, Book 2, Chapter 33) and “Jesus, while alive, was of no assistance to himself, but that he arose after death, and exhibited the marks of his punishment, and showed how his hands had been pierced by nails.” (Against Celsus, Book 2, Chapter 59).

    The issue with Luke is another irrelevant distraction. I am not trying to defend inerrancy at this point, only general reliability. Not a single Bible author disagrees that Jesus was crucified and then resurrected. If Luke or another author got a small detail wrong now and then, all it proves is that they were human, but that does not mean they erred on the central point of their message. However, here is an explanation of the Luke passage (and links to other alleged inconsistencies). http://defendinginerrancy.com/bible-solutions/Luke_2.2.php

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Jay, That was fast 🙂 .

      Going to do a point-by-point review on this one. You mentioned:

      “Thanks for your response. The sources I cited all say Jesus was crucified, not Simon or anyone else.”

      Yes, these historical accounts have recorded that they know of people who claimed that Jesus was crucified. I don”t deny this fact. It fits perfectly into my narrative….

      <<<<>>>>

      “The resurrection couldn’t happen unless Jesus was killed, so the two claims work together. ”

      The Non-Christian sources you have cited only shows that the crucifixion has occurred, it in no way shows that a resurrection has occurred.. Because if it did, then it would say so.

      ” The reason the Simon theory……evidence for it comes later (100 years later)…”

      Remind me, when was P52 discovered? Your evidence(the Bible!) is just as good as mine in terms of dating. Though I am curious, strictly on manuscripts, when is the earliest mention of a Resurrection? I would suspect that you would only find it in later manuscripts, and definitely not with the scraps and papyri you have in the second century. I haven’t looked, more of a suspicion…..I would say in the third century perhaps?…..I could be wrong.

      As for Church Fathers, the earliest, AUTHENTIC WRITINGS is dated from around the same time. Correct me if I’m wrong!

      “The writers of the NT had no reason to make up the resurrection. They didn’t gain from it all, and in fact, it cost them greatly…..martyred….tortured……excommunicated…..social and monetary losses, .They all scattered after the crucifixion, or were non-Christians, having no reason to invent the resurrection. ”

      The same thing happened in Islam, there was severe persecution in many forms: physically, socially and economically. Bringing pure monotheism to idolaters, was no easy task. However, they did not succumb to these pressures and adopt their pagan ways into their belief, they stood strong and they persevered.

      That being said, many different religious groups and heretical sects have faced the same, it is not evidence for or against a religion!

      “….were willing to tell embarrassing details about themselves or their friends in a commitment to the truth.”

      I haven’t read this before, please share.

      In our hadith we have something similar in regards to embarrassing/unflattering incidents of some of our companions. Would you say my hadith tradition is authentic because of that?

      “The same cannot be said for the sources who leave out the resurrection. They had biases against Christians or reasons not to accept the resurrection. It’s easy to explain the fact that they did not write about the resurrection based on normal historical rules and psychological principles.

      Pure Speculation!

      “It’s not so easy to explain why the NT writers would believe it or make it up or how Christianity blossomed unless it really happened.”

      So majority rules?

      ” Jesus, while alive, was of no assistance to himself, but that he arose after death, and exhibited the marks of his punishment, and showed how his hands had been pierced by nails.” (Against Celsus, Book 2, Chapter 59).”

      Let me get this straight, you are quoting a Church Father about a Roman Historian? Some points to consider:
      (1) As you have made the point previously, you don’t feel there is a BIAS here?
      (2) How can it be considered a NON-CHRISTIAN SOURCE, its coming straight from a CHRISTIAN SOURCE !!!!
      (3) It was written in 248 AD, that is a LONG TIME after the fact.

      “The issue with Luke is another irrelevant distraction. I am not trying to defend inerrancy at this point,

      And neither am I bringing up inerrancy. That is not my argument at all. I am making the argument that you can’t take Josephus and Tacitus and claim they corroborate your story and on the other hand disregard their testimony when they provide contrary facts.

      “However, here is an explanation of the Luke passage (and links to other alleged inconsistencies). http://defendinginerrancy.com/bible-solutions/Luke_2.2.php

      We can move on from Luke 22, these days, in my discussions with others, I am finding a lot of biblical contradictions are being “reconciled”……

      ——————-
      May I add another topic or argument to consider or perhaps change to? You don’t have to address it , nor will I be offended if you don’t. Nor should readers assume anything if you don’t address it.

      Why not talk about the Trinity? Why do Christians defend their belief by bringing up the Death and Resurrection of Christ? Focusing more on doctrine, like the Trinity would be more fruitful (IMHO) , as that is more important since it relates to God, and His very nature. A belief which is foreign to the OT and foreign to the lips of Jesus.

      Like

    • Oops, it didn’t post for some reason:

      Yes, these historical accounts have recorded that they know of people who claimed that Jesus was crucified. I don”t deny this fact. It fits perfectly into my narrative as well:

      ————–But I was rejoicing in the height over all the wealth of the archons and the offspring of their error, of their empty glory. And I was laughing at their IGNORANCE. (2nd Treatise of Great Seth: 9)————-

      Like

    • *when was P52 dated?

      I forgot to edit some stuff, apologizes

      Like

  43. The reason for the focus on the resurrection rather than the Trinity is because the Trinity and everything else Christianity teaches is only a valid if the resurrection happened. I’ve responded to you somewhat point by point, although I did it somewhat out of order (backwards actually).

    I want to make a statement now, rather than at the end, to maybe save you some time because I don’t know if you respond while reading or after you’ve read my whole post.

    There should be no problem with you accepting that the evidence is very strong for the crucifixion and resurrection. Even if the historical record strongly supports something as true, it is possible that it might not be true since we are not there to confirm it. Likewise, I can accept the general reliability of the hadiths and historical statements in the Qur’an. God or Allah could certainly make corrections if the historical record was misleading people. I say this because I think I’ve shown the case for the crucifixion and resurrection to be quite strong based on standard historical practices while your objections are merely trying to cast doubt on standard historical procedures, and are demanding a higher level of support that is not required for other historical documents. Meanwhile, you’ve admitted that your only evidence to refute the biblical claims about the crucifixion and resurrection is the Qur’an (7th cent) and two somewhat late sources (2nd cent) that have no claim to eye-witness testimony and no other way to test for authenticity. It seems to me that this all comes down to which holy book is more likely to be from God, the Bible or the Qur’an. Would you agree? If so, what is the evidence that the Qur’an is from God?

    “you can’t take Josephus and Tacitus and claim they corroborate your story and on the other hand disregard their testimony when they provide contrary facts.”
    This is exactly what historians, and police detectives work for that matter, do in order to determine what really happened when there are contradictory accounts. It’s necessary because they can’t all be true. They could all be false, all be partially correct, or some could be correct while others are only partially correct.

    “The same thing happened in Islam”
    -I don’t deny that Muslims were persecuted. I believe they were. I also think the earliest Muslims were sincere in their beliefs. The reason why this matters is because if Jesus was not crucified and resurrected, the authors of the NT were either severely and utterly fooled or were the ones responsible for fooling everyone else. Based on the evidence, both are extremely unlikely. This does not apply to Islam because it was merely taken on blind faith that Allah spoke to Muhammad. He didn’t do multitudes of unexplainable miracles in public and in front of his critiques.

    “Would you say my hadith tradition is authentic because of that?”
    -I would also agree that the hadith tradition, or at least some of them, are generally reliable sources, although various accounts need to be taken individually (as should be done with the Bible) and the overall reliability of each author needs should be evaluated, too.

    “The Non-Christian sources you have cited only shows that the crucifixion has occurred, it in no way shows that a resurrection has occurred”
    -You are absolutely right, which means more work needs to be done to show the resurrection occurred. However, it also means that the weight of the evidence is in contrast to your view that Jesus was not crucified.

    “Let me get this straight, you are quoting a Church Father about a Roman Historian? Some points to consider”
    When I quote Bart Ehrman, he is a non-Christian source. I am a Christian source reporting what he said, but the origin of the quote is a non-Christian source. I should be checked for accuracy in various ways, but I can still be reliable. Once again, this is how we evaluate all historical sources. There’s no special exception for Christianity, so it is not being biased.

    “Pure Speculation!”
    Not at really. We know Christians were persecuted and killed for their beliefs, especially toward the end of the first century. This is quite a strong deterrent, so it’s quite reasonable to expect people to not believe something that would cause them harm.

    “So majority rules?”
    Not at all, but I would argue that those outside the majority require a higher level of justification for their minority beliefs. Moreover, I wasn’t really talking about majority as much as I was referring to the need for an explanation of Christianity’s origin if Jesus was not crucified and resurrected. Theories that invoke hallucinations, conspiracies, delusions, etc., do not fit with modern scientific understandings of such things or historical knowledge of religious beliefs and the transmission of knowledge.

    “Remind me, when was P52 discovered? Your evidence(the Bible!) is just as good as mine in terms of dating”
    -Once again, the age of the fragments is not the only determining feature of when something was written. There are many ways to determine this without the originals that are fairly accurate. Use of language, names, writing style, references to people, things, or locations can all be used to help critiques determine when a document was written.

    “I haven’t read this before, please share.”
    I was referring to the criteria of embarrassment. I thought we’ve discussed this before, but maybe not. In any case, here’s just a few of the examples. http://crossexamined.org/the-bible-embarrassing-and-true-part-2/

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your reply, you mentioned….

      “The reason for the focus on the resurrection rather than the Trinity is because the Trinity and everything else Christianity teaches is only a valid if the resurrection happened. “”

      I wonder did the Prophets of Old, have to believe in such to be saved? In the Old Testament, did Moses go around saying “You need to believe in the death and resurrection of Jesus (or a coming Messiah)”? He didn’t, nor did he say, “Father, Son and Holy Ghost”. Would you agree with me, that if you took the Old Testament and put it in a Vacuum, keeping aside the NT(at least your interpretation of it) , Church Father quotations,Church teachings, etc.., you would not be able to come to these beliefs and doctrines?

      (Admittedly this is a tangent, you can disregard this if you like, no worries)

      “I want to make a statement now, rather than at the end, to maybe save you some time because I don’t know if you respond while reading or after you’ve read my whole post.”

      I read your reply, a couple of times 🙂

      You may find that I many not address everything, for that I apologize. I do have a habit of glossing over arguments which I feel, that we can “agree to disagree”. Sometimes (and im not saying you), within a discourse/discussion/debate it starts to becomes rebuttal, counter-rebuttal, counter-counter-rebuttal, counter-counter-counter rebuttal, to infinitum……Also ( and I may be guilty of this) we may be repeating the same arguments.

      That being said , if you feel that you want me to address or focus on one specific point( or train of thought) more than others, let me know and I will dedicate a whole reply on that point, without intended deviations or tangents , on my part (or at least to the best of my ability) :p

      “I say this because I think I’ve shown the case for the crucifixion and resurrection to be quite strong based on standard historical practices while your objections are merely trying to cast doubt on standard historical procedures”

      We briefly touched upon on this before, but what are “standard historical practices/procedures”? Is this something arbitrary which you have defined? You are claiming a criteria and using that as your standard, as if that criteria is set in stone, or well known. Please tell me where I can find this list of these practices and procedures from an UNBIASED source that is universally agreed upon by scholars. You mentioned a month ago :

      “We can list the relevant facts surrounding the resurrection and then compare to see which view:
      1. Explains the most facts
      2. Is disconfirmed by the fewest facts
      3. Is most internally consistent
      4. Is least ad hoc (simplest or requires least additional theories)
      5. Is more coherent with other accepted facts”

      I don’t know how to approach this task. All of your “facts” come from Christian Sources, which in itself is not a bad thing, but we can’t rely on them since they are not authentic. And so we come to our next point:

      “no claim to eye-witness testimony”

      Are you saying the Bible is reliable enough to provide ‘an eye-witness testimony’?

      Let’s say there is a murder that happened 25 years ago, and I want to bring in a witness who knows who the murderer is. But I don’t have the witness , he’s dead for 20 years. But I claim to have his testimony through writings. Ok…so no problem….But wait those “attributed” writings were not written 20 years ago, bur written ten years after the witnesses’ death. Ok….you must know how it was passed down, the witness must have told(orally or through written form) A , A told B, who told C, who told D , who wrote it down 10 years after. Uh oh….we don’t know WHO told WHO, all we have is a writing written down 15 years after the incident, and we don’t know how it was transmitted and who was in between the ORIGINAL witness and the one who wrote it down 10 years later. Moreover we don’t know when the writings was actually written down. We are basing this off of writing style, but this writing was discovered this year, 10 years after the supposed writing ( taking a shot at paleography :p ) , 20 years after the death of the witness, and 25 years after the actual incident. (hopefully that wasn’t confusing, I had to rewrite that a couple of times, lo..)

      Also there are other testimonies around , that provide contrary narratives as to who was the murderer, dated around the same time, as the one found above ( I am referring to P52 and other gnostic fragments also dating to that time, if I have not done a good job with my metaphor)

      Now please tell me , will this evidence be admittable to the court? No, the Judge will deem this to be heresay.

      “. It seems to me that this all comes down to which holy book is more likely to be from God, the Bible or the Qur’an. Would you agree? If so, what is the evidence that the Qur’an is from God?”

      Yes, I think it does come down to which is from God, the Bible or the Qur’an.

      There are numerous evidence and proofs for the validity of the Qur’an One of the evidence is its miraculous preservation both Orally and Textually. That can’t be said of the Bible. I have not seen one Christian having memorized the whole Bible in Aramaic, or Greek , or Latin, or EVEN the English which they read today. So I can make the claim (whether you believe it or not) that I am speaking and reciting the Qur’an verbatim the way the Prophet Muhammad did, you can’t make that claim.

      Keeping aside the oral tradition, Muslims have manuscript evidence from the first century(of our calendar) confirming 91.7 % of the Qur’an we read today. With the NT you don’t have anything in first century of your calendar. The earliest you have is P52 in the second century and it takes up to the 4th Century to get a complete manuscript of the Bible. May I also add that our manuscripts are Radiocarbondating, while your manuscripts are not. ( Paleography is a flimsy science at best)

      The miraculous PRESERVATION of our Qur’an is one of its miracles, among others.

      “This does not apply to Islam because it was merely taken on blind faith that Allah spoke to Muhammad. He didn’t do multitudes of unexplainable miracles in public and in front of his critiques.

      And your doing blind faith of others who say they saw miracles. The fact is that you and I weren’t there to see the splitting of the Red Sea, or the Great Flood of Noah, or the miracles that Jesus performed. We believe in them because of faith, but we can’t base our faith on them because we weren’t there. These miracles by its very nature are temporal while the Qur’an is an everlasting miracle, for all times and locations and places.

      As for “regular miracles” , the Prophet performed many and if you wan’t I could bring them up from our hadith literature.

      Moreover if someone performs a miracle and tells you something contrary to what is logical and rational, should you believe him? If Jesus did a miracle and then claimed to be God (which he never did), should you believe in his divinity?

      This reminds me of a famous saying of one of our sages, Imam Ghazali. He mentions the following:

      ——————Suppose, for instance, a man should come and say to me, who am firmly convinced that ten is more than three, “No; on the contrary, three is more than ten, and, to prove it, I change this rod into a serpent,” and supposing that he actually did so, I should remain none the less convinced of the falsity of his assertion, and although his miracle might arouse my astonishment, it would not instill any doubt into my belief.———————–

      And as Muslims we believe the Dajjal (Anti-Christ) will perform many miracles, and people will believe in him because of that. But the true believers will see through the deception and the lies of this deceiver.

      “When I quote Bart Ehrman, he is a non-Christian source. I am a Christian source reporting what he said, but the origin of the quote is a non-Christian source”

      It’s not the same, you are REFERRING me to the actual source. I can go and read the actual book/blog/journal-article and confirm for myself the quote. NOW IF you were quoting Bart Ehrman, and saying I must rely on you for this quote , then your testimony holds no water. I could accuse you of fabricating the quote the same way you can accuse others of neglecting to mention the Resurrection because, and I quote “The same cannot be said for the sources who leave out the resurrection. They had biases against Christians or reasons not to accept the resurrection.”

      ——————————
      WHEW, that was long!

      I have skipped over some stuff, not just because of brevity but also because I feel we are coming to an Impasse on those subjects. Like I mentioned b4, if you feel that I need to address something specifically from that, let me know I will disregard all other topics, and just focus on that, with “laser precision” , lol. But if you want just a general reply, like we usually do, let me know.

      I leave the direction of the our conversation/discourse to you.

      Like

  44. Shaad says:

    “I am actually going through a personal phase, where I am wrapping up all my research/discussion on comparative religion. I just have a few more posts left to make on my blog. I have done this for many years, and I have decided to “hang up my hat”. It’s time to seek new horizons and reach new heights. This blog will serve as my legacy for others to benefit from, inshAllah (God-willing)”

    Sorry for jumping into the conversation… So you’re nearly done… Then what are you planning to do after wrapping up? I suggest that you keep learning, i’ve been reading your posts and they are EXCELLENT but you still have much to learn…e.g history or christological stuff or maybe Islamic Fiqh…or what about Biblical Grammar?It would help you A LOT in your discussion about the Trinity (i’m tryna learn as well lol)…or maybe etc etc…there are many possibilities mate…you’re still young right? You’re still at the tip of the iceberg right now…😄

    Liked by 1 person

    • 🙂
      Indeed knowledge is an on-going process, and admittedly they are many topics both in Comparative Religion and Islam, which I haven’t touched.

      But I’m happy with where I am at. This reminds me of a story:

      ……a bird took with its beak (some water) from the sea: Al-Khadir then said, ‘By Allah, my knowledge and your knowledge besides Allah’s Knowledge is like what this bird has taken with its beak from the sea.’……
      (https://sunnah.com/urn/44050)

      Liked by 1 person

  45. 🙂

    Indeed knowledge is an on-going process, and admittedly they are many topics both in Comparative Religion and Islam, which I haven’t touched.

    But I’m happy with where I am at. This reminds me of a story:

    ……a bird took with its beak (some water) from the sea: Al-Khadir then said, ‘By Allah, my knowledge and your knowledge besides Allah’s Knowledge is like what this bird has taken with its beak from the sea.’……
    (https://sunnah.com/urn/44050)

    Liked by 1 person

  46. Shaad says:

    That’s so true…well i guess that’s your choice…believe it or not, one day you’ll certainly (If God wills) come back here and start posting again…you’ll always come across new stuff on the internet that triggers your curiosity…

    Liked by 1 person

  47. […] possibly 1009) . That is MORE THAN 400 years after the revelation of the Qur’an confirmed by manuscripts .And 600 years after the Christian’s “so-called” complete manuscripts in the 4th […]

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  48. Once again, sorry for the late reply. Upon coming back to this conversation, I can see there isn’t much to respond to since all evidence for Christianity will be thrown out. You’ve stated you’re unwilling to study the topics necessary to answer your questions and objections, yet you raise objections that have been answered or are false.

    So perhaps we can see if there is any evidence for Islam. You mention the preservation of the Quran as a miracle. What are your thoughts on claims that the Quran has not been preserved? Here’s just one claim. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BwSkDXXpNSI&t=211s

    Do you believe cats will not walk on the Quran?

    Do you have any other way to prove the Quran or Islam is true?

    Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  49. GomerOzDubar says:

    There is no such thing as 2 different ancient Quran canons with 2 different messages. There is 1 Reading and the development of many experimental script styles and orthography according to 1 reading. From this 1 reading, every tribe pronounces a different dialect of ‘transmission” and furthermore, every human has their own peculiar way of pronunciation the very same single Quranic lectionary. As Quran says, “it’s information, recollection and themes of God’s message is preserved first by chant then documented”.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Even if what you say is correct, then the claim that the Quran is miraculously preserved and given by Allah would be false. However, there are more differences than just those you mentioned, which makes the case against the Quran even stronger. You can watch the video I already posted, you can watch this one here (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fsoBfjzevpc), or you can find many others on the subject. There are differences in whole words and even dispute about which chapters should be included.

      Like

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