By Mohamed Haroon Sait
Do you know we Muslims believe in Jesus Christ? this is one of the prominent questions I always ask when I get an opportunity to discuss on religion with Christians. I would say, nine out of ten never knew that. That really makes me sad. I always thought, if Christians knew the honor Jesus and his mother Mary has in the Quran, it would bring the followers of these two faiths closer.
Jesus is mentioned in the Quran twenty five times by name whereas Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon all the prophets) mentioned only 5 times by name. His mother Mary is the only women mentioned in the Quran by name. God almighty named the chapter 19 of the Quran with her name. Muslims have to excel in highlighting and educating their Christian friends about the commonalities we have with the pillars of the Christian faith ie Jesus and his mother Mary.
If following the way of Jesus makes one a Christian, then we Muslims can claim that we are more Christians than those who say they are Christians. Let me give you few examples.
- Muslim men are circumcised as Jesus was on the 8th day his birth.
- Muslim men grow beard like Jesus had.
- When Jesus met his followers he greeted with “Shalom” like Muslims greet with “Salam”
- Jesus never ate pork. It is prohibited in Islam to consume pork.
- In all her depictions we see Mary the mother of Jesus dressed like a Muslim woman is dressed.
- Bible says, In the garden of Getshamane Jesus fell on his face and prayed just like Muslims pray.
- In the creed one can find that Muslims practice what Jesus instructed his people. When a questioner asked him this;
Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment (Mattew 22:36-38)
Now compare with what Quran says
“…. But those of faith are overflowing in their love for Allah…” (The Cow 2:165).
Quran talks about Jesus most eloquently and attests to the following in the chapter 3 – Family of Imran:45-51.
- Miraculous birth of Jesus Christ. Quran confirms that Jesus was born to Mary a virgin.
- He was a Prophet and servant of God. He was blessed and had great honor with God.
- He was given the Injeel (Gospel)
- He was ordered to offer prayer and give out in charity.
- He spoke in the cradle and defended the honor of his mother.
- He brought the dead back to life, with the permission of God.
- He gave sight to those were born blind.
- He cured the lepers.
- He fashioned bird out of clay and would breath in to it and it flew with the permission of God.
- He could tell what one has ate and what one has left at home.
There are so much of similarities between the teachings of Jesus in the Bible and in the Quran. In reality Islam is the only non-Christian faith that makes it an article of faith to believe in Jesus as a Prophet. Here is what Jesus told us.
Beloved, believe not every spirit, but try the spirits whether they are of God: because many false prophets are gone out into the world. Hereby know ye the Spirit of God: Every spirit that confesseth that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is of God: (1 John 4:1-2)
I like to highlight two important points here.
- He kept open the door of prophet hood after him. He only said that one should test the Prophet to ensure he is not an imposter.
- The criteria Jesus stated to verify is that the Prophet should attest that Jesus indeed came in the flesh.
None other than Prophet Muhammad attested and sealed that deal. Now I invite my Christian readers to ponder over this seriously and to follow what Jesus taught and accept the Prophet Muhammad as true Prophet.