Chapter 4: Jesus From the Viewpoint of Islam and the Church

"Two sects succumbed to their wrong deeds concerning Jesus: The first were Jews who turned against him until they made a false accusation against him. The second were Christians who glorified him as a deity"10 (The Holy Prophet of Islam)

Church Teaching Concerning Christ

Jesus is God! "And [Saul] said, who art thou, O Lord? And Lord answered, I am Jesus..." (Acts 9:5) Jesus is the begotten Son of God! "But when the time was ripe, God sent forth his son, born of a woman…" (Galatians 4:4)

Devil and Son of God "At once after His baptism, Jesus came up from the water, and beheld, the heavens were opened and he saw the spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him. And a voice from heaven said: "This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased" (Matt. 3:16-17)

"Then was Jesus led by the spirit into the desert to be tempted by Devil. After fasting forty days and nights, he was hungry. The Tempter [Devil] approached him and said: "If thou be the Son of God, command these stones to turn into bread…"

The Devil then conducted him to the holy city... saying to him, "If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down... Jesus said unto him, "Furthermore, it is written: Thou shalt not test the Lord thy God." (Matt. 4:1-7)

Next the Devil took him to a very high mountain and showed to him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor, saying to him: All these will I give thee, if thou wilt kneel and worship me. Then Jesus said to him: Be gone, Satan! For it is written: Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God and Him only shalt thou serve." (Matt. 4:8-10)

God in the Nicene Creed

In 325 AD, a council was formed by the Byzantine Emperor in the city of Nicaea near Constantinople to settle the argument between Ahrius and Alexander.

The Council was inaugurated by raising this issue, and finally the ideas of Ahrius and his followers were rejected. They were condemned, being accused of their realism and unorthodoxy, and were exiled by the Emperor's command. The majority decision was submitted before the Council and was signed by all members thereof in form of a letter of faith.

10-Beher, vol. 35, p.322

"We believe in God, the Father, the Almighty, in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord, Son of the Father, the only offspring who is from the essence of Father, God from God, light from light, true God who is born from true God and not created by Him, having the same essence with the Father through Whom all that abide in the heavens and earth come into being. It is for us human beings to be redeemed that He descended from heaven, incarnated in human image.

He toiled and on the third day he ascended to the heavens and would come to judge the living and the dead... Curse be upon those who say that he did not exist, or that he had not existed before he came into existence or that he was made out of nothing.

Curse be upon those who profess that He is of another essence and temperament or that He was created as the Son of God and liable to change." The concord was later extended and what the Christians today call Nicene Creed is the same thing.11 From what has been quoted from the Bible and the above - mentioned concord, it becomes evident that Christianity has been plagued with two superstitious and false concepts.

1-it has presented God as a composite and compound being; otherwise, it would have been impossible that one part should be detached from Him and become His son.

It goes without saying that God is indivisible and free from any composition or compound natures, for as the theological scholars and philosophers have stated, a composite would require components and an outside agent putting them together, and such a thing would be, generally speaking, inconsistent with an omnipotent God, whose omnipotence has set Him above all creatures.

2-Jesus, who often wandered about hungry and thirsty, Who was affected by hardships and difficulties, who asked for help from the true One God and who was a restricted and finite creature, has been considered to be God and, as a result, infinite. The fallacy of such a concept is most obvious, for to consider Christ God is tantamount to saying that the limited is unlimited or the finite is infinite.

Lately, some Christian writers have written: "What Christians believe is that God is able to make Himself appear in the image of man."12

These writers ignore the fact that such a statement is on the whole inconsistent with the infinity of God. Furthermore, it also implies that God, too, like all other beings, is changeable and liable to transformation.

More ridiculously, they write: "Just as it is possible to take a bucketful of water from the Pacific Ocean and call it the water of ocean, there is also nothing wrong in saying that in this world Jesus was filled as much as possible with the Spirit of God."13 It is obvious that God is not composite and it is wrong to compare His entity with an ocean. He is not divisible and thus a part of Him 11-history of the role of old church in the Iranian and Roman empire; p. 241-244. 12-The incarnated God; Noor-e- Jihan publications; p. 20-24.

13-The same source; p. 25.

could not fill the vessel that was Christ. All these are mere superstitions that have come to afflict the Christian writers.

Chapter 5: Islamic Teachings Concerning God and Jesus Christ

"Say: He, Allah, is the single one. Allah is He whom all depends. He begets not, nor is He begotten; and none is like Him."(Holy Qur'an 105: 1 - 4) Therefore, any form of polytheism, idolatry, birth incarnation and corpularity has been rejected in Islam and the Lord is stripped of any of these embellishments.

"And Jews say: Ezna is the Son of Allah. And Christians say: Messiah is the Son of Allah. These are the words of their mouths, which correspond with each other. They imitate the saying of those who disbelieved before..." (Holy Qur'an 9:30).

Some contemporary investigators have compared the Old and New Testaments with beliefs of the Buddhists and others. The similarity is such that there would remain no doubt for a knowledgeable person that the superstitious beliefs observed in Christianity have been adopted from others.

"They indeed disbelieve who say: Surely, Allah - He is the Messiah, Son of Mary. Say: Who then could control anything against Allah, when He wished to destroy Messiah, Son of Mary, and his mother and all those on the earth?" (Holy Qur'an 5:17)

"Praise be to Allah! Who revealed the Book to His servant, and allowed not therein any crookedness, rightly directing, to give warning of severe punishment from Him and to give good news to the believers who do good that theirs is a good reward, staying in it for ever. And to warn those who say:

Allah has taken to himself a son. They have no knowledge of it, nor had their fathers. Grievous is the word that comes out of their mouths. They speak nothing but a lie. Then maybe you will kill yourself with grief, sorrowing after them, if they believe not in this announcement." (Holy Qur'an 18:1-6).

The Holy Qur'an tells the prophet of Islam: "And say: Praise is to Allah! Who has not taken to Himself a son, and who has not a partner in the kingdom..."

These are examples characteristic to the teachings found in the Gospels and officially accepted Christianity. We leave it to you to judge for yourselves these two kinds of teachings.

A youth, who had been participating for some time in the Christian Church religious services at the invitation of the Church, once said: "I am still in the dark about what was Jesus Christ. Was he God, Son of God, the Good Shepherd or the Lamb of God?"14

"It is Funny", he added, "that in a world where living manifestations of science have dazzled the eyes and where human beings are curious to understand and know everything just as it is, the Christian fathers and 14-Jonah's Gospel calls Jesus, the Lamb of God.

missionaries are calling people towards believing in superstitions and fairy tales. They ask unguided people to give Jesus a place in their hearts! For Jesus suffered to redeem people of their sins and was nothing but God himself who appeared in the image of man and later died on the Cross so as to as to as to absolve our sins! Nevertheless, had he been God Himself, could he not have absolved our sins or guided us without taking a human form?"

He said: "It is ridiculous that the scientists, who often undertake years of exhaustive investigation concerning a certain scientific issue in order to understand and accept something logically, are told by the Holy Fathers to accept that the earth is fixed, because the Holy Bible says so. They are told to come to believe in a God who is but One and at the same time Three! However, I personally have never met a Christian who could understand the Trinity or explain its meaning."

"Since the issue of the Trinity consisting of God being composed of Father, Son and the Holy Spirit is the basis of the present Christian faith, I have tried hard to understand it, but whoever I have asked about it, has replied: It is a secret you would not come to grasp unless you will have become a Christian. How preposterous!"

"Each great Holy Father has compiled a book or a treatise as he has pleased and included it among the Scriptures and Gospels which constitute the so-called "Holy Bible". These Holy Scriptures are not few, but many. A number of letters are also considered Holy whose authors are essentially unknown!"

"Among Christ's disciples, only Barnabas had spoken the truth and had therefore become the target of attacks by other Christians, for he had refused to become a tool of the profit-minded Holy Fathers and openly said: "Those who give you the prophecy that Christ is the Son of God, have been deceived and Paul is among them, too."15

"The Gospel of Barnabas had in effect come to be rejected and hated by "highly venerated" Popes and missionaries, since it had opposed the beliefs of others and promised the arrival of the Prophet of Islam. Hence the poor Christians are forbidden by papal edict from reading the Gospel of Barnabas and most of them are basically ignorant of its existence."

This youth then talked at length about the colonialist role played by Holy Fathers in African and Asian countries and, referring once again to the content of the Gospels and Christ, "the Son of God", he said: "What sort of God is this that, by the claim of the Gospels written several centuries ago, was born from Mary, the wife of Joseph,

the carpenter; who after eating, drinking, praying, fasting and sometimes drinking wine, was finally caught, killed and buried by scoundrel people"; who remained in the grave for three days before rising from it to the heavens and being honored to sit on the right-hand side of the first God, 15-The Gospel of Barnabas. (222: 3.387)

i.e. his Father; and who would one day return to earth to pass judgment. Truly he is a strange God who failed to deal with his Jewish servants who finally buried him, albeit he came out of the grave three days later and rose to the Heavens."

"I have closely studied the Bible and burst into laughter. If you have a Bible with you, open it to Genesis, Chapter 32, Section 24, and read it to the end. See how the Lord God wrestles with Jacob, but fails to overpower him and finally since the day-break is drawing near and people have already started to move around, the Lord takes hold of Jacob's thigh and says: "Let your hand go of me, for the day breaketh and he [Jacob] says: I will not. Let thee go, unless thou blessest me."

This is an example of what the Christian God did.

The youth then went on: "Well, this was about God. Now let's observe what these books have said about other prophets of God. In Genesis (19: 30-38) one reads that Lot drank wine, slept with his two daughters and impregnated them." In II Samuel the following shameful account is given about David the Prophet:

"And it came to pass m an evening that David arose from his bed and walked upon the roof of the King's house; and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon."

"And David sent messengers who took her; and she came unto him, and he lay with her, for she was purified from her uncleanliness and she returned unto her house. And the woman conceived and told David and said: I am with a child.

"And David sent to Joab, saying: Send me Uriah the Hittite. And Joab sent Uriah to David."

And when Uriah was come into him, David demanded of him how Joab did, and how the people did and were prospered. "David said to Uriah: Go down to thy house, and wash thy feet. And Uriah departed out of the King's house, and there followed him a mess of meat from the king."

"But Uriah slept at the door of the King's house with all the servants of his lord, and went not down unto his house." (II Samuel 11: 2-10)

"And it came to pass m the morning that David wrote a letter to Joab and sent it by the hand of Uriah." "And he wrote in the letter saying: Set ye Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retire ye from him that he may be smitten and die." (II Samuel 11:14-15)

Joab who commanded David's army did as he was told and as a result, "there fell some of the people of the servants of David, and Uriah the Hittite died also" (II Samuel 11:17) "And when the wife of Uriah heard that Uriah her husband was dead, she mourned for her husband."

"And when the mourning was past, David sent and fetched her to his house, and she became his wife and bore him a son, but the thing that David had done, displeased the Lord." (II Samuel 11: 26-27).

Is it not ridiculous that the holy fathers print and distribute such Gospels and books, and even have them translated into a thousand languages?

The youth continued: "I cannot see why the holy fathers had come to make a genealogy for Jesus Christ. For God and the Son of God do not need such a thing in the first place? Secondly, the Holy Bible says that Jesus descends from no one, only that his mother is Mary.

But having no work to do as usual, the holy fathers have pompously furnished two genealogies for him, one mentioned in Matthew's Gospel and the other in Luke's. If Jesus had no father, then why is there a need for a genealogy? Why do they relate him to Joseph the Carpenter? Joseph did not lay with Mary. Just as we read in the beginning of Gospel of Luke, the womb of Mary was filled with the Holy Spirit,

whereas Mary was a virgin! "Maybe the holy fathers wanted to connect Jesus to David, Solomon and Jacob through these genealogies, but the problem remains in the very fact that had Jesus been from their life-line, he would also have been bound to be a descendant of David, and since David had committed adultery, he must be subject to damnation by the law of Torah!"

This young man had many other things to say which cannot be described in detail within the limited space of this chapter.

Chapter 6: The History of the New Testament

Christian scholars believe that Jesus Christ has not left behind any divine book; rather, it was his disciples who, some time after his death, decided to do this job. At last they wrote treatises concerning the deeds and words of Christ. But unfortunately from the very beginning these writings became for a period of 100 years subject to alterations, omissions and additions by the blood-thirsty Roman emperors, who had no other aim but destroy the very foundations of Christianity and encourage superstition and idolatry.

During the long period, the policy of the emperors left a deep impression on the foundations of real Christianity:

Religious leaders were either killed or detained; religious books were burned; heretics infiltrated into seminaries beginning to spread false teachings in the Church of that time; religious societies were disbanded; cloisters and convents were destroyed and razed to the ground.

Through their activities during that long 300-year period, the emperors had in effect ruined the basic foundations of Christianity, inflicting irreparable damages upon it. As a result, considering these events, no one can trustfully be optimistic towards the Bible including the Gospels.

To make our point more clear, we shall presently offer the case histories of some these emperors; Trajanus After he came to power in 98 AD, his policy dictated him to remove Christianity in a systematic program. He fabricated and instituted some regulations concerning Christianity. These laws were in force for a long time.

The judge generally tried to encourage Christians to deny Jesus Christ and worship non-Christian gods. Had Christians remained faithful to their belief, they would be killed.

The situation reached a point when in 155 A.D Polycarpe, who was one of the most famous founding members of the Church, was burnt at the stake in the city of Izmir.16 Marcus Aurelius He decided to exterminate Christianity by inflicting cruelty and violence. To this end, he killed many Christians in Africa and in many other provinces of the Empire. Tempest, plague, famine, foreign invasion and other calamities, which came to afflict the people during the reign of this emperor, instigated them more and more against Christians.

Each day a group of Christians were arrested. As a result, the best people of 16-History of the church; p 152-157. the churches of Lyon and Vienna and other church founders were arrested. Metellus, son of Attalos, who was in fact a great champion in the theological affairs and reinforcing aspects of the Church, was subjected to torture and persecution and finally died a tragic death.17

Decius

According to Miller, the Christian scholar, the measures taken by Decius to destroy the Christian Church was more effective than those carried out by previous Roman Emperors. Since he launched his cruel and aggressive campaign quite unexpectedly, many Christians who were caught by surprise, generally disowned their faith.18

Valerianus

After he succeeded Decius as the emperor, he threatened to kill all the archbishops who did not agree with him. He beheaded the archbishop of Carthage, Cyprian. During the second year of his rule, he ordered that all priests to be killed, Christian nobles to be dispossessed of their properties and positions and be killed if they persisted in their faith.19

Deuclocian

When he came to throne, paganism had been revived. Pagan writers had roused the general public against the Christians. Galerius who had nearly come to succeed the emperor, encouraged Deuclocian to issue an order to remove any trace of the Church. To this effect, all cloisters were destroyed, Christian books were set afire, and all those Christians who did not offer sacrificial tokens to the emperor were either tortured or killed.

Although this oppression did not last l9ng on the Western part of the Empire, it continued for nine years in the Eastern Empire, and was the severest persecution and harassment that the Christians had so far suffered from.20 Considering these disasters, how could one believe that the New Testament had not been destroyed or subject to alterations during those epochs?

Constantine the Wicked

Following all these crimes and aggressions committed against the very basis of Christianity, in 312 AD, Constantine became the Emperor of Rome. He put an end to the Roman persecution and oppression, but through his constant 17-History of the church; p.166.177. 18-History of the church; p. 179-180. 19-History of the church; p. 181. 20-History of the church; p. 182-183.

interference into religious affairs, adoption of the title of the head of the Church, and establishment of the Oecumenical Council of Nicea, he dealt a mortal blow at the already injured Christianity.21

Apart from being a wicked man and committing a number of abhorrent and disgraceful acts, he did not totally sever ties with polytheism and even forced Christians to conform to him in both thought and practice. He did not pay any attention to objections and criticism of archbishops who had gathered in Oecumenical Council of Nicea from all parts of the Roman Empire (an item of their criticism has likely been the problem of the New Testament textual confusions). Instead of studying them, he ordered to burn their notes of criticism.22

Did the rule and supervision of such a wicked man, whose faith was a matter of doubt, help to settle the problems of Christianity or had otherwise landed more credence to the arguments and evidence pointing to the lack of credit of what has remained?

In order to achieve his political objective, Constantine would force the Christians into a compulsory unity and prevent them from expressing their thoughts and opinions.

He was emphatic on whatever he had in mind. Thus it is unclear what he had done to the New Testament including the Gospels.

Did this wicked man of dubious faith, who had no goal other than furthering his own ambitions, instituted the heresies and alterations of the Roman polytheists or destroyed them? There is no room for doubt that as far as his relation with polytheism was concerned, he could not have kept Christianity unsoiled by them. At any rate,

all current versions of the New Testament available to Christians belong to the early or middle fourth century (325-350 AD) and there is no trace of the complete manuscripts belonging to the pre- Constantine era. Nor is it clear what has occurred to them through various upheavals and political games.23

Considering this situation, could the veracity of the Gospels and tenets of Christianity be trusted and should what is known currently as the Holy Bible be recognized as the original works of the Disciples or should their veracity and authenticity be doubted by any fair-minded person?

A living witness to the fact that whatever is known today as the New Testament is not trustworthy and authentic is that portions of the discovered manuscripts belonging to the early days of Christianity are wholly different from some of present Gospels. Dr. John Alder, the famous American missionary in Iran, has written in his book called "Archaeology of the Holy Scripture": "In the ruins of Exir Hincus, two papyrus scrolls have been discovered consisting of words attributed to Jesus

21-History of the church; p. 232-245. 22-History of the church; ps. 233,242,248. 23-Archaeology of the Holy Scripture-John Alder.

Christ, but most of them differ from what we read in the New Testament." The discovery of the scrolls containing Gospels' old text clearly demonstrates that the present Gospels are altered and have taken the present forms later in the hands of the Popes and a number of holy fathers.

In short, it must be said that the New Testament that has been constantly at the mercy of events and mysterious manipulations is in no way reliable and trustworthy and could not be considered the work of the Disciples of Jesus.