Bridge Building Between Christians and Muslims

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With nearly one billion followers each, Islam and Christianity are major religions that influence the thinking and values of over 40 percent of the World population. While there are theological differences, some of which might be significant, there are nonetheless other important areas of belief that are shared by both communities: belief in Allah, or God; belief in revelation, in prophets, in the Holy Books of Allah; in the life hereafter and in a divinely inspired moral code organizing and regulating human life during our earthly journey to eternity.

1. MUSLIM-CHRISTIAN DIALOGUE

For the Muslim, constructive dialogue is not only permitted, it is commendable. In the Qur’an we read, ‘Say, ‘O people of the book’ (a term which particularly refers to Jews and Christians) ‘come to common terms as between us and you: that we worship none but Allah; that we associate no partners with Him (in His powers and divine attributes); that we erect not from among ourselves lords and patrons other than Allah.’ If then they turn back say you ‘Bear witness that we are Muslims.’ (Bowing) to the will of God.” (al-i-Imran;3:64)

The methodology of that dialogue is also explained in the Qur’an; “Invite (all) to the way of your Lord with wisdom and beautiful exhortation, and argue with them in ways that are best.’ (al-Nahl; 16,125) A prerequisite for any constructive dialogue is that both communities should not learn about each other through sources that are unsympathetic, critical, or even hostile: they should rather try to formulate an honest idea as to how the other faith is seen in its own authentic scriptures and as practiced by those who are truly committed to it. This need is even more significant in the case of the Muslim-Christian dialogue. The average Christian has heard of or has read about Islam mostly through writers who have had colonial or missionary motives, which might have given a certain slant to their interpretation of Islam to the western mind. While I admit that my own practice of Islam is far from perfect, I at least speak from the vantage point of someone who wants to think of himself as a committed, practicing Muslim. Now I’d like to share with you five basic areas, consideration of which is imperative in any Christian-Muslim understanding: the meaning of the term “Islam”; the meaning of the term “Allah”; the nature of the human; the relationship between the human and Allah; the question of accountability, and finally, some conclusions pertaining to bridgebudding between Muslims and Christians.

2. MEANING OF “ISLAM”

Taking the term “Islam,” it is important to emphasize that it is not derived from the name of any particular person, race, or locality. A Muslim considers the term used by some writers, “Mohammedanism,” to be an offensive violation of the very spirit of Islamic teaching. The Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, is not worshipped, nor is he regarded as either the founder of Islam or the author of its Holy Book, the Qur’an. The term “Islam” is given in more than one place in the Qur’an itself. It is derived from the Arabic root (SLM) which connotes “peace” or “submission.” Indeed, the proper meaning of “Islam” is the attainment of peace, both inner and outer peace, by submission of oneself to the will of Allah. And when we say submit, we are talking about conscious, loving and trusting submission to the will of Allah, the acceptance of His grace and the following of His path. In that sense the Muslim regards the term Islam, not as an innovation that came in the 7th Century, Christian era, with the advent of the Prophet Muhammad, but as the basic mission of all the prophets throughout history. That universal mission was finally culminated and perfected in the last of these prophets, Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon them all.

3. ISLAMIC MONOTHEISM

The next essential concept that needs to be clarified is the term “Allah” What does it mean? It should be emphasized first that the term “Allah” has no connotation at all of a tribal god, an Arabian or even a Muslim god. The term “Allah’ in Arabic simply means the One and Only True, Universal God of all. To think that Allah is different from God, with a capital ‘G’ is no more valid than saying the French Christians worship a different god because they call him “Dieu”.

What are the basic attributes of Allah? The Qur’an mentions the “most beautiful names” (or attributes) of Allah. Instead of enumerating them all, let’s examine a few. Some attributes emphasize the transcendence of Allah. The Qur’an repeatedly makes it clear that Allah is beyond our limited perception. “There is nothing whatever comparable unto Him.” (al-Shura; 42:1 1) “No vision can grasp Him, but His grasp is over all vision.” (al-An’am; 6:103) A Muslim never thinks of God as having any particular image, whether physical, human, material or otherwise. Such attributes as “The Perfectly-Knowing,” “The Eternal,” “The Omnipotent,” “The Omnipresent,” “The Just,” and “The Sovereign” also emphasize transcendence. But this does not mean in any way that for the Muslim Allah is a mere philosophical concept or a deity far removed. Indeed, alongside this emphasis on the transcendence of Allah, the Qur’an also talks about Allah as “personal” God who is close, easily approachable, Loving, Forgiving and Merciful. The very first passage in the Qur’an, which is repeated dozens of times, is -In the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful . . . .’ The Qur’an tells us that when Allah created the first human “He breathed into him something of His spirit,” (al- Sajdah; 32:9) and that “Allah is closer to the human than his jugular vein.” In another beautiful and moving passage we are told, “When my servants ask you (O Muhammad) concerning me, then surely I am near to them. I listen to every suppliant who calls on Me. Let them respond to My call and obey My command that they may be led aright.”

For the Muslim, monotheism does not mean simply the unity of God, because there can be different persons in unity. Monotheism in Islam is the absolute Oneness and Uniqueness of Allah, which precludes the notion of persons sharing in Godhead. The opposite of monotheism in Islam is called in Arabic “shirk,” association of others with Allah. This includes not only polytheism, but also dualism (believing in one God for good or light and another for evil or darkness). The concept of “shirk’ also includes pantheism, the idea that God is in everything. All forms of God-incarnate philosophies are excluded by Islam’s monotheism, as is blind obedience to dictators, to clergy, or to ones own whims and desires. These all are regarded as forms of “associating” others with Allah (shirk), whether by believing that such creatures of Allah possess divinity or by believing that they share the Divine Attributes of Allah. It should be added that, to the Muslim, monotheism is not simply a dogma. Islam’s pure, pristine and strict monotheism is much more than a thought or a belief; it is something that deeply influences the Muslim’s whole outlook on life.

4. NATURE OF THE HUMAN

We have talked about Allah. What about you and me? Who is the human being? Who are you and I? And why are we here on earth? The Qur’an teaches that we humans are created of three components. We are created from clay, representing the material or carnal element. We are endowed with intellect that is Allah-given to be used, not to be put on the shelf. Reason may be insufficient but it is not the antithesis of faith, either. And thirdly, we are endowed with the spirit of Allah, which was breathed into us (al-Sajdah; 32:7, al Baqarah; 2:31, al-Hijr; 15:29). The Muslim does not see human existence here on earth as punishment for eating from the forbidden tree. That event is regarded as an experiential lesson for Adam and Eve before they came to earth. The Qur’an teaches that even before the creation of the first human it was Allah’s plan to establish human life and civilization on earth (al-Baqarah; 2:30). Thus, the Muslim does not view the human as all evil, nor as all good, but rather as responsible. It is stated in several places in the Qur’an that.Allah created the human to be His “khalifah”, His trustee or vice- regent on earth. Humankind’s basic trust, our responsibility, is to worship Allah. Worship for the Muslim is not only engaging in formal rituals, but it is any activity in accordance with the will of Allah for the benefit of oneself and of humanity at large. Thus the Muslim views the earth, its resources and ecology as a gift from Allah to humans to harness and use in fulfillment of the trust for which we shall all be held responsible. That is why the Qur’an speaks highly of learning. The first word revealed of the Qur’an was, “Recite,” or “read.” As long as they were true to their faith and to Qur’anic injunctions about learning, Muslims established a civilization that saw great advances in science and in the humanities. Not only did they preserve earlier scientific heritage but they also added to it and paved the way for European renaissance. When Muslims again become true to their faith such history is bound to repeat itself

5. ALLAH-HUMANKIND RELATIONSHIP

We talked of Allah and of humankind. Now we must ask what is their basic relationship. The Qur’an teaches us that the human race is given an innate pure nature called “fitrah.” Knowledge of Allah and innate spirituality are inherent in human existence, but this spirituality can betray us if it is not led in the right direction. To depend on a merely human feeling of the guiding Spirit is dangerous. Many groups, even cults, claim to be guided by the spirit or by God or by revelation, yet these groups hold divergent, even contradictory, beliefs. We find people behaving in contradictory ways who claim nonetheless that each is doing the will of God. “I feel,” they say, “that the spirit guides and directs me.’

A credible source of revelation is imperative. Throughout history Allah has selected particular individuals to convey His message, to receive His revelation and to exemplify it for mankind. For some of these prophets, holy books or scriptures were given revealing Allah’s commands and guidance. For most of you the names of these prophets found in the Qur’an will sound familiar: Noah, Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Moses, David, Solomon, John the Baptist, Jesus, and, finally, the last prophet, Muhammad, peace be upon them all. These prophets carried the same basic message: “Not an apostle did We send before you without this inspiration sent by Us to him: that there is no god but I; therefore worship and serve Me.” (al Anbiya; 21:25) Further, the Qur’an insists on calling all those prophets Muslims, because a Muslim is one who submits to the will of Allah. Their followers are called Muslims as well. Thus it is an article of faith for a Muslim to believe in all these prophets. Indeed, Muslims are warned that anyone who accepts some prophets and rejects others, in fact rejects them all. For a Muslim, to believe in Moses while rejecting Jesus or Muhammad is against the very teaching of Moses. And to believe in Jesus but reject Moses or Muhammad is to violate what Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad stood for. For a Muslim to believe in Muhammad and reject either Moses or Jesus is to violate his own Holy Book. ‘Those who deny Allah and His apostles, and (those who) wish to separate Allah from His apostles, saying: ‘We believe in some but reject others ‘ and (those who) wish to take a course midway. They are in truth (equally) unbelievers and We have prepared for unbelievers a humiliating punishment.” (Al-Nisa’; 4:150-151) Recognition of all prophets is an article of faith, not a mere social courtesy or diplomatic statement. I do hope that with open minds, open hearts and further careful, honest study there may be more such mutual recognition.

6. THE SPECIAL ROLE OF MUHAMMAD

But why do Muslims in their testimony of faith say, “I bear witness that there is no god but Allah and that Muhammad is His messenger? Does that mean that they in fact reject other prophets? Indeed, the special role played by Muhammad as the seal and last of all the prophets puts the Muslim in the position whereby honoring Muhammad implies honoring those who came before him as well. Muslims are warned not to make fanatical or parochial distinctions between prophets (al- Baqarah; 2:285). But the Qur’an also says that Allah has favored some prophets with more significant gifts or roles than others (Al-Isra’; 17:55). All are brothers, although the only prophet with the universal mission to all humankind is Muhammad, peace be upon him (al- Furqaan; 25:1 1). The Muslim believes not only that Muhammad is a brother to Jesus, Moses, Abraham and other prophets, but the Qur’an states in clear terms that the advent of Muhammad was foretold by previous prophets, including Moses and Jesus, peace be upon them (al-Araf; 7:157, al-Saff; 61:6). Even the Bible in its present form clearly foretells the advent of the Prophet Muhammad (e.g. Genesis 21:13, 18, Deuteronomy 18:18 and 33:1-3, Isaiah 11:1-4, 21:13-17, 42:1-13 and others).

For the Muslim, the Qur’an contains the words of Allah directly and verbatim revealed to Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him. Many confuse the Qur’an with the ‘Hadith,’ or sayings, of the Prophet. The Hadith is quite separate from the Qur’an. The latter was dictated to Muhammad word for word through the Angel Gabriel and immediately memorized and put down in writing. It is important to emphasize that the Qur’an was neither written nor composed by Muhammad, peace be upon him. To hold such a view would contradict what the Qur’an says of itself and of Muhammad; that the prophet is not speaking on his own but only transmitting the revelation dictated to him by the Angel Gabriel. To suggest that the Qur’an borrowed from or copied from previous revelations, be it the Bible or otherwise, is, for a Muslim, an accusation of ‘prophetic plagiarism,” a contradiction in terms. The fact that there are similarities between the Qur’an and previous scriptures is simply explained by the fact that He Who spoke through those earlier prophets is He Who revealed the Qur’an to Muhammad, the one and only true God, Allah. However, the Qur’an is the last revealed Holy Book, which supersedes previous scriptures and the only one still available in the exact words and language uttered by Prophet Muhammad.

7. ACCOUNTABILITY AND SALVATION

We have talked about Allah, about the human and about the relationship between them. What about accountability? How can we humans, from the Islamic perspective, overcome “sin”? The Qur’an teaches that life is a test, that earthly life is temporary (al-Mulk; 67:2). The Muslim believes that there is reward and punishment, that there is life hereafter and that reward or punishment do not necessarily wait until the day of Judgment, but start immediately after burial. The Muslim believes in resurrection, accountability, and the day of judgment.

For a Muslim, to demand perfection in order to gain salvation is not practical. It is demanding the impossible and is unjust. Islam teaches a person to be humble and to learn that we cannot achieve salvation by our own righteousness. The reconciliation of the “sinful” human with Allah is contingent on three elements: the most important is the Grace, Mercy, and Generosity of Allah. Then there are good deeds and correct belief. Correct belief and good deeds are prerequisites for God’s Grace and Forgiveness and for rising above our common shortcomings. How can sin be washed away? The Qur’an gives the prescription: ‘If anyone does evil or wrongs his own soul, but afterwards seeks Allah’s forgiveness, he will find Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (al-Nisa’; 4:110) Another moving passage reads, “Those things that are good remove evil deeds.” (Hud; 11:114) Islam teaches repentance, stopping evil ways, feeling sorry for what one has done, and determining to follow the path of Allah as much as humanly possible. The Muslim does not believe in the necessity of the shedding of blood, much less innocent blood, to wash away sins. He believes that Allah is not interested in blood or sacrifice, but in sincere repentance. The Qur’an puts it clearly: “But My Mercy extends to all things.” (al-A’raf; 7:156)

8. THE APPLIED ASPECT

How about the application? Are we just talking theology? Since the human is Allah’s trustee, it would be inconsistent for a Muslim to separate the various aspects of life, the spiritual and the material, state and religion. We hear a lot about the “five pillars of Islam,” but they are often presented as the whole of Islam, many times in a shallow way. They are not the whole of Islam any more than one can claim to have a functional house composed exclusively of five concrete pillars. You also need the ceiling, walls, tables, windows and other things. As the mathematicians put it, it is a necessary but not a sufficient condition. The five pillars of Islam (the testimony of faith, the five daily prayers, fasting, charity, pilgrimage) are presented by most writers as matters of formal ritual. Even the pillar that is liable to appear ritualistic, daily prayers, is a purely spiritual act involving much more than simply getting up and down. It has social and political lessons to teach the Muslim. What may appear as separate compartments of life simply does not exist for the Muslim. A Muslim does not say, ‘This is business and this is moral.” Moral, spiritual, economic, social and governmental are inter-related, because everything, including Caesar, belongs to Allah and to Allah alone.

9. MUSLIM/NON-MUSLIM RELATIONS

In conclusion and against this background, what is the implication for the Muslims in their attitudes toward non-Muslims? To start with, and we must be frank about it, the Qur’an makes it incumbent on the Muslim to convey Allah’s message in its final form, the Qur’an, to all humanity. We are not talking here about conversion. I do not like that word. Indeed, to turn to Islam, the religion of all the prophets in its final form, is not to turn one’s back on the preceding Prophets. It is an augmentation, rather than a conversion, because it does not involve changing ones basic spiritual nature. In the Qur’an, pure human nature is a “Muslim nature,” which knows its Lord and wishes to submit to Him. The Qur’an states, “Let there be no compulsion in religion.” (al-Baqarah; 2:256) My substitute for the term “conversion’ is “reversion,” in the sense of a return to the pure monotheism in which we were all created. Thus the Muslim is taught to be tolerant toward others. Indeed, the Qur’an not only prohibits compulsion in religion, but it prohibits aggression as well, although it allows defense: “Fight it, the cause of Allah those who fight you, but commit no aggression; for Allah loves not transgressors.” (al-Baqarah; 2:190)

In addition, we find that within this broad rule of dealing with non-Muslims “the People of the Book” is a special term accorded to Jews and Christians in the Qur’an. Why “People of the Book”? Because the Muslim makes a clear distinction between a polytheist or an atheist and those who follow the prophets who originally received revelations from Allah. Even though a Muslim might point out areas of theological difference, we still believe in the divine origin of those revelations in their “original” forms. How should a Muslim treat these “People of the Book”? Says the Qur’an: “Allah forbids you not, with regard to those who fight you not for [your] Faith nor drive you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them: for Allah loves those who are just. Allah only forbids you, with regard to those (others] who fight you for [your] Faith, and drive you out of your homes and support (others] in driving you out, from turning to them [for friendship and protection]. It is such as turn to them [in these circumstances], that do wrong.’ (al-Mumtahinah; 60:8-9)

In the world today all believers in Allah are facing common dangers: atheism, materialism, secularism and moral decay. We must work together. Allah says in the Qur’an: “… If Allah had so willed, He would have made you a single People, but His Plan is to test you in what He has given you. So strive as in a race in all virtues. The return of you all is to Allah; it is He that will show you the truth of the matters in which you dispute.’ (al-Ma’idah; 5:51)

I hope, feel, and trust that there is sufficient common ground for Muslims and Christians to meet, understand each other, join hands and move together in the Path of Truth, Peace, and Justice, the Path of Allah. Thank you very much for your patience and may peace be with you.

10. ISLAMIC TEACHINGS SERIES

The following audio series of interviews by Dr. Jamal A. Badawi (Islamic Information Foundation, a non-profit educational foundation, Halifax, N.S., Canada) are available:



By: jamal badawi | Source: IslamiCity | Category: Articles, Faith, Featured | Topic: bridge building, christians, muslims, peace | Views: 84,248 | Comments: 38

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38 Comments

  1. the page symbol looks like c+ :) a and c++ are programming languages, c+ is the language of peace :)

    well, no kidding. I really like your effort and hope Muslims and Christians will live like brothers, will bid salaam to each other every time they meet and make the world more beautiful… Ameen.

  2. I have written a book entitled “TWO DIFFERENT WORLDS BUT THE MESSAGE

    IS THE SAME”, and I totally agree with Dr. Badwai’s article.

  3. I read the article and found it informative but in so much of what I see when it comes to Christian-Muslim relations, it seems that Muslims want Christians to understand them and their faith, but I sense that Muslims are not all that interested in finding out what we as Christians believe and why. First of all I bear no ill will toward Muslims and feel that all should be treated with respect and kindness. We should be able to disagree agreeably and find common ground where we can. Islam is a great world religion and certainly has made its mark in the world. But for us as Christians, Jesus is more than a prophet in a line of prophets that God used to convey His truth to mankind. For us Jesus is the Son of God. He is God who put on human flesh and dwelt among us to showe us His love. We believe that Jesus lived on this earth like all men were originally created to do, without sin. Jesus willingly laid down His physical earthly life and paid the price for sin which is death as He died on a cross for us. The message of the Bible is sacred to us. The core of that message is found in the Gospel of John chapter 3 verses 16 and 17. “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world but that through Him the world might be saved.” In the Book of Romans in our Bible 6:23 it says, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Jesus said simply in John 6:47, “He who believes in Me has everlasting life.” As Christians we don’t believe that we do good deeds in order to earn our salvation. We are saved because we put our faith in Christ and His death for us. The resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead says these things are true. As Christians we do good works because we love the Lord. We aren’t perfect, just forgiven. Would be glad to talk with anyone about these things.

  4. This is an excellent article. Masha Allah May Allah help us to build the broken bridges with his wisdom so that we see ourselves as one.

  5. It is a nice theory about Islam and Christianity being able to build a bridge to one another. One must remember the great commission ” to preach the good news of the gospel to all countries etc. ” Islam is monotheistic and the teaching of the trinity is not compatible. You can at best agree to disagree but that is as far as it will go. Islam is never going to eccept Jesus as God and most Muslims find it affending being told they must be “born again ” in the Christian sense. Sallum Alakium .

  6. Subhanallah, an excellent article for all Muslims & non-Muslims. May Allah seals the bridge with his mercy & guidance to everyone reading this article with knowledge that will show the path leading to Almighty Allah.

    Islam is a faith of not only bridge building between religions or believers, a faith perfected by Prophet Muhammad s.a.w. uniting all humanity. Thus uniting all believers.

    Difference amongst believers are done by their own actions & perspectives of what is known to benefit themselves most. Let read and find the truth within us. Let get to know one another instead building bridge which is not even existed in the creation of Prophet Adam a.s.(puh). Amin

  7. Aslmalkm, indeed a nice article and hope it reaches out to as many

    non-muslims as possible while making the muslims themselves more

    tolerant. Just a small question though, towards the end of the

    article, you’ve mentioned the meaning of the verse (al-Mumtahinah;

    60:8-9) specifically: ‘Allah only forbids you, with regard to those

    (others] who fight you for [your] Faith, and drive you out of your

    homes and support (others] in driving you out, from turning to them

    [for friendship and protection]. It is such as turn to them [in

    these circumstances], that do wrong.’ Does this mean we should not

    be friends or work under or with the Jews or in their companies

    because of what Israel is doing to Palestine? I would really

    appreciate your thoughts on this because I think there may be a

    conflict in this and sometimes it does confuse a Muslim when he is

    faced with a situation where he has an opportunity to collaborate or

    work for/with the Jews/their companies. Should we, as Muslims, feel

    guilty in such a situation or is it an allusion? I’ll look forward

    to your comments. Thanks!

  8. Why we need religion in the first place.Muslim

    says Islam is the way of life and so is Christianity but as you can see nowadays religious

    became the way of terrorism,why?the best way to

    save our self is believe in fellow HUMAN BEING,we

    are the prove of living thing not religion.

    None of us can prove the existence of GOD but

    every one can prove the existence of HUMAN

    BEING.We was born first before any other religion

    so we must believe in humans first than religion

    than all can live safely,securely and happily.

  9. The only true GOD is the GOD,I AM.This is different then what your message is.How can you prove thatThe term “Allah’ in Arabic simply means the One and Only True, Universal God of all.This is the only bridge to be built.Christian (adj.) Professing belief in Jesus as Christ or following the religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus.

    Christian (adj.) Relating to or derived from Jesus or Jesus’s teachings.

    Christian (n.) One who professes belief in Jesus as Christ or follows the religion based on the life and teachings of Jesus//////

    Muslim (n.) A believer in or adherent of Islam.

    Muslim (n.) A member of the Nation of Islam; a Black Muslim See the difference(Jesus) between us.

  10. Eid Mubarak to all of my brothers and sisters. I would like to say that I appreciate the effort that Islamicity tries to do by posting these articles. But, could we please move on? As you can see by some of these statements, there are plenty of Christians that do not want to accept muslims. The media, and the newspapers now are trying to make sure that the masses remain ignorant to us. All you see and read about are how muslims are, women are oppressed, or muslims chanting “death to America, and every western country.” For years now, I know that brothers and sisters have been working so so hard for interfaith relations. Very little, in my opinion, has been accomplished.

    As an African-American who has lived in these same harsh conditions, and environments, I am happy that we were encouraged to be ourselves. And not continue to beg others to accept and love us. Because, reality check, African-Americans as a race, realized that everyone was not going to accept us and love us. So, we did what most people do, moved on. I agree with Paymon, we need to get ourselves together and work on us. Another thing that someone posted, on the day of Judgement, it won’t be about joining hands with people who practiced Shirk. It will be all about what we did for Allah. Throughout the Holy Month of Ramadan, that is exactly what my focus was on.

    Note to the Christians who boast about Biblical christianity spreading. Why are so many in the US leaving the churches as if they had plagues?

    I pray that each and everyone of you had a blessed Ramadan, and a Blessed Eid. Hold tight to the rope of ALLAH! In the end, its all about making it into the Jenah.

  11. you don’t hear or see the Muslims forcing anybody not Muslim, to wear hejab You so haven’t been doing enough research Doc Ed.

    “the behaviour of the disbelievers toward Islam, is not rooted from their normal human behaviour. it is based on the great( greatness in evil) satan slavery to many of mankind.”

    So basically satan is the one who turns people against Muslims and Muslim countries, oh yes that makes sense, we complain about Iran’s annual death to America calibration, stoning, mutilation, be headings, killing of hundreds of thousands in Darfour and East Timur etc etc etc because of satan, not because such things are viewed as immoral. In UK, every other month a group of extremist thugs are caught plotting to murder a load of random civilians, and of course satan is the one turning us against this.

    Sure violent extremists make up only a small portion of Muslims, but to blame satan for the negative perceptions of Muslims rather than the extremists is ridiculous. Yes, ok a lot of westerners are ignorant of the real Islam, but don’t you think that’s mostly down to extremists etc, not satan.

    Many terrorests say they are blowing themselvs up to fight negative impressions of Islam, that is just like building a brick wall infront of a tree because it is blocking your sun light.

    And what makes human rights myth?

  12. and Eid Mubarak brothers and sisters in Islam. don’t forget your brothers and sisters in Islam in Afghanistan, Iraq,…, are not able to have good Eid because of a crazy president wanted to renew the crusader wars in 21 century…

  13. this sign from the only remaining authentic book from the Almighty, is all what the people who call themselves christians, need to understand:

    4:157 That they said (in boast), “We killed Christ Jesus the son of Mary, the Messenger of Allah.;- but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but so it was made to appear to them, and those who differ therein are full of doubts, with no (certain) knowledge, but only conjecture to follow, for of a surety they killed him not:-

    there is no problem in discussing the truth with anybody on Earth.

    Islam does not force anybody to take the truth, just look at the wars started in Islamic land!!!? all of those wars target to force changes on the Islamic population…include forcing them on the way they should dress or talk or carry the capital punishment among them… under the MYTH of human right…

    you don’t hear or see the moslems forcing anybody not moslem, to wear hijab or grow a beard… matter fact, you can’t find a moslem forcing another moslem to do so.

    BUT YOU FIND MANY UNREASONABLE HUMANS TRYING HARD TO FORCE MOSLEMS TO GO AGAINST THEIR TEACHING…

    the behavior of the disbelievers toward Islam, is not rooted from their normal human behavior. it is based on the great( greatness in evil) satan slavery to many of mankind. just think about what’s going on around you? you will find nothing right about this so called war on terrorism…more than FIGHTING ISLAM IN HYPOCRITE’S MANNER.

    the satan doesn’t give too many options to those rallying behind him. that’s why any human’s dialogue about the facts of Abrahim, Issmaeel, Isaak,…Moses,…,Jesus and Mohammad will fail. it is a real attack on the great satan! and who doesn’t evaluate the power of missguidance of him, will always fail in this challenge.

    and the majority of us, humans, think of satan like a fairy tale…

    but let’s keep the hope of trying the dialogue alive?

  14. I am greately heartened by this excellent article. Thank you. We share the same hope for genuine peace and trust between Christians and their Moslem neighbours (see my ‘Christians and Moslems can be friends’ page on http://www.fatherdave.org/friends). Peace to you, brother!

  15. First of all, I appreciate what you are trying to accomplish. I have read the Bible and Koran a number of times, and I really don’t see any contradiction at all, so far. Even theological differences can usually be explained away if you disregard traditional teaching and look at the scriptures in a more harmonic fashion. For instance, the Koran never says that Jesus didn’t die on the cross; all it says is that God resurrected him. Well, isn’t that exactly what the Bible says? Islamic tradition may teach that Jesus did not die on the cross, but what does the Koran actually say? One other thing I noticed is that when the Koran says that Jesus is an Apostle and not God what the Koran is doing is not discrediting who Jesus was so much as it is redirecting the emphasis of the worship of God, because so many Christians of the day were worshipping Jesus as God. Nowhere in the Bible does Jesus ever call himself God, but instead says that he is only the son of God. Clearly the Koran does not condone the Trinity doctrine. Why, because it simply is never mentioned, or explained in the Bible. It is merely a man made tradition. I think Islam is well past due for its own Reformation movement. I consider myself a Protestant Muslim.

  16. Coming from a Christian perspective, I agree with much of the article. In fact, I came here to find a Muslim’s view of their own faith, rather than listening to converted Muslims talk about reasons why they converted. Truth is what is important to all of us, is it not? If Mohammed was the final prophet, than I am in error and should submit, but if Jesus was God, than you are in error and should submit. Through peaceful conversation we can learn more about the truth from each other, as well as find our common ground to fight against the secularization and moral degeneration we see rapidly overtaking our world, rather than fighting each other. There is a difference between tollerance (agreeing to disagree on truth) and acceptence (agreeing that it is ok if someone is wrong on important issues of God, salvation, and morality, we shouldn’t do anything about it). We should be willing to tollerate, help and support our common goals, while both striving to find truth of who God is and what He expects of us.

  17. Just a correction about interfaith relations between Christians and Muslims. Islam has 1.3 Billion followers and Christianity has almost 2.2 Billion Followers, thank you and Salaam Aleykum.

  18. Very good article , I agree with this article except one line :- “join hands and move together in the Path of Truth, Peace, and Justice, the Path of Allah. ” ( the third sentence of last paragraph). Let me explain. The path of pure Towheed (Islam) and a path of Shirk (christianity), both cannot be the path of Allah !! The religion of trinity..original sin etc (christianity) and the religion that strongly opposes trinity..original sin and other important christian concepts, i.e. Islam , both cant be the Path of Truth, the Path of Allah !! Yes , there are many common grounds between the two faiths but let me assure you the jewish faith is muchmore similar or closer to Islam than christianity is, but Holy Koran says jews will be muchmore hostile to muslims than christians will be. My point is, even if jews christians and muslims get a PHD on other two monothiestic faiths, it is unnatural for them to build bridges and there are many reasons for this which I dont feel like discuss now. But dont get me wrong, I’d love to see them building bridge… joining hands…move together in peace, justice etc. I sooo want it happen but I wanna be realistic too. I’d love to see through my window a cow flying in the sky, that would be such an amazing view to see. But its not gonna happen. Secondly, those who corrupted Towraat and Injeel and created outrageous lies against Jesus(pbuh) and people who follow it – will naturally remain enemy of the original faith of Christ, Moses and all Prophets :- al-Islam. Every day we see in news who are destroying killing muslim heartlands. As muslims, our responsibility is to invite and show Islam to any non-muslim (including those who r enemies of muslims) but it is not our business whether he/she accept or reject Islam. If he/she accept it – alhamdulillah, but if she/he reject it – alhamdulillah as well becuz we have done our job( to show him/her Islam ). But how much bridge a muslim has built with them will be of no use on

  19. Very well presented. An issued that we Muslims must adapt into our Khutbahs and use in reaching the Non-Muslims. Our differences will cause us to part ways, where our similarities will help close the gap. This is one way of achieving the closing of that gap. May Allah(TA) reward you for such efforts, Amin.

  20. A community which tries to falsify Quran’s Ayats cannot have any dialouge with Muslims/ WAl Lajina Kafaroo Wa Kajjabu Bi Aiyatina Ulaeka Ashabun NarO Hum Fiha Khaledun.{Q:2/39}

    Ye who believe ! Take not into your intimacy those outside your ranks: They will not fail to corrupt you.They only desire your ruin

    If anyone desires a religion other than ISLAM (submission to Allah) Never will it be accepted of him; and in the Hereafter he will be in the ranks of those who have lost.)

    ( Let not the Believers take for friends or helpers unbelievers rather than Believers. If any do that, shall have no relation left with Allah. )

    (O Ye who believe ! Take not the Jews and the Christians for your friends and protectors. They are but friends and protectors to each other. And he who amongst you turns to them (for friendship) is of them. Verily Allah guideth not a person unjust.)[Q5/51}Your real friends are (no less than) Allah, His Messenger, and Believers, those who establish regular prayers, and pay Zakat and they bow down humbly in worship.):5/55}

    O YE Who Believe! Take not for friends unbelievers rather than believers: Do ye wish to offer Allah an open proof against yourselves? )

    {Q:4/144}

    .(O Ye who believe ! Take not friends and protectors those who take your religion for a mockery or sport whether among those who received the Scripture before you or among those who reject faith; but fear Allah if Ye have faith (indeed).{Q/5:57}

    The Holy Quran is not gossip . It contains the code of conduct for Muslims. After all the saying quoted above, no other human reasonings will hold good

  21. this is a cmprehenseive yet simple guide to muuslems in order to comunicate with our christian brothers and sister in the west, may allah[GOD] bless you dr jamal,

  22. Alsalam alikoum,

    I’ve found these verses in the Bible.

    Romans 1:18-25 “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made,

    even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing

    themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the truth of God into a

    lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.”

    Another translation:

    Romans 1:18-25 “For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and wickedness of men who by their wickedness suppress the truth. For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. Ever since the creation of the world his invisible nature, namely, his eternal power and deity, has been clearly perceived in the things

    that have been made. So they are without excuse; for although they knew God they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking and their senseless minds were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man or birds or animals or reptiles. Therefore God gave them up in the lusts ..”

  23. Alhamdu Lillah! may Allah Bless the the persons that are running this site .Every one has read that Allah is god and not esa (r.a)AND the Hindu bible also for told the the coming of the Rosooll S.A.W what more can u ask for!THE prophet came with a message,THE IS NO GOD BUT ALLAH!and i will abide by it AMEEN!!!! Assalam o Alikum Wa rahmatullah he wata brakatathu.

  24. Dear Elmer no muslim can say that Christianity is inferior to Islam. To say that is a great error and a sin. Muslims as explained in these articles honour Prophet Jesus son of Mary. As a muslim women I feel humble to know that God chose Mary above all women. That alone teaches me that as a woman we have a special status.

    Jesus will come back to earth and will settle all those who differ in his message. Until such day all we can do is to find his message in our hearts. It is no surprise to find out in this century that we start diverting from the true spirit of his message.

    In Islam there is no compulsion of religion. No muslim has to preach to you to become muslim. Let us not forget that prophet mohamed(SAW)has brought this message to humanity. Those people who are searching about the path of Islam will find the truth in their hearts for God tells us that the whole of the heaven and earth can not contain Him but the heart of the believer does.

    None of us know for sure where our destiny is for God guides whom He pleases. So we should all inspire to do good and respect each other’s belief.

    In the Quran God tells us not to quarrel with christians and Jews regarding our differences:

    2:62 Those who believe (in the Qur’an), and those who follow the Jewish (scriptures), and the Christians and the Sabians,- any who believe in Allah and the Last Day, and work righteousness, shall have their reward with their Lord; on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve.

    2:113 The Jews say: “The Christians have naught (to stand) upon; and the Christians say: “The Jews have naught (To stand) upon.” Yet they (Profess to) study the (same) Book. Like unto their word is what those say who know not; but Allah will judge between them in their quarrel on the Day of Judgment.

    2:135 They say: “Become Jews or Christians if ye would be guided (To salvation).” Say thou: “Nay! (I would rather) the Religion of Abraham the True, and he joined not gods with Allah.”

  25. Elmer Smythe,to know the reality go to irf.net[comparitive religion with proofs].

    All the religions prophesised the advent of prophet Muhammed from chiristianity,buddhism,zoroastrianism,judaism ,sikhism to hinduism.

  26. PEACE!

    I found this article most heartening. It is time that we

    look to the Origins of our faiths to find what brings us

    together.

    Let us glorify God who wishes us to live in peace with

    one another.

    How good it is for brothers to dwell together in unity!

    Your servant;

    James Ross

  27. People can dialogue all they want. The fact remains. Muslims do not believe Jesus died on the cross for the sins of each individual human. Any attempt to play down this point is apostasy for Christians. We can live in peace but the only way, really, is to not bring up religion. Christians often demonized Muslims because we are quite upset of your appropriation of our religion. You can practice Islam as you want but we do not want to hear about it, we do not want to learn about it, and we should not have to. Christians and Muslims would get along much better if Muslims would drop the idea that there religion is the continuation of Christianity. Do you people even understand how insulting it is to tell us our scriptures are corrupted. This is like saying you are an idiot, you are corrupted. This is not very nice and there is no way for Muslims to get around it. Jews will always be considered the accursed of God and Christians the ones who went astray. Jews and CHristians get along better because we do not tell them that there scriptures are corrupted merely that they do not believe Jesus was a prophet. Although Muslims often say Islam is about equality the idea that Christians are corrupted means we are inferior. Something that is corrupted has fallen from perfection. There is no way to view it but inferior. How would a man today be treated by the Muslim community if He did to them what you do to us. Saying he is really the last prophet, the Quran while close to the truth was corrupted, and that he had the real phone line to God? He would be considered an evil, evil man. The answer – you would not like it one bit and would likely do what we do to you.

  28. I would like to thank Dr. Badawi for his outstanding understanding of Islam. I have always felt in my heart the truth that he so eloquently expresses, but I was not knowledgeable enough to succeed in sharing my understanding to others. Thanks to him, I am able to send to all those people I know, Muslims and non-Muslims, his articles so that they better understand Islam and our duties here on earth. It is sad that so much harm has been done by our own mislead brethren in faith. May Allah bring them back to the right path so that they no longer deviate from Allah’s commands and harm Islam. It is also sad that our systems of education do attempt to teach Islam as beautifully as Dr. Badawi doew. We would definitely have a young generation of boys and girls who would be properly equipped to resist all the new trends that endanger their lives, whether pushed on them through their own Muslim brethren or through the West. Thank you, Dr. Badawi, it is with pride and deep respect that I mention your work to others. I do intend to acquire the resst of the materials you have written. Jazakum Allah alf Khair. Yasmine Fahim

  29. Another MUST READ for all, both Muslims and non-Muslims from the great Brother Jamal. Please lets have many of his on Islamicity Website, at least to read. Cos not all of us had the opportunity to register with you in order to view the videos or hear the audios, ie on the teaching and learning section of the site.

    Peace.

  30. a great article.one tat elates the heart to rejoice in bringing humanity together.

    “love all human beings for if they are not brothers unto you in religion, they are brothers unto you in humanity/creation.’ Prophet Mohammad, p.b.u.h.

  31. I totally agree with the article. As an American and a Christian people do not think I would be so tolerant of the other faiths but i actually admire the Muslims for their loyalty to their religion. I must admit it was nice to see the article has the same feelings as i do. I have friends who are Jews, and Muslim, and love them all just the same.

  32. A beautifully written and well presented article. Very simple to read and understand. I encourage everyone, people of all faiths to read and give your sincere thoughts to the article.

    Peace!

  33. Its an absolute presentation.I request people of all faiths to just give it a thought.Think about it.Go ahead.U can do it.Every word is as true as the existence of God.

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