Channel: Jamal Badawi
Series: Jamal Badawi - Jesus
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AsSalamu Alaikum and welcome once again to Islam in focus. Today's program will be on Jesus, the beloved messenger of Allah is our 14th program. And it is our fourth topic on. Did Jesus claim divinity. I'm your host, Rashad nimish. And here with me once again from St. Mary's University is Dr. Jamal Godot, assembly conductor.
Mr. Could you please for the benefit of our viewers give us a quick summary of last week's program. Okay, last week we continue to discuss the some of the differences, which are usually referred to more or less to support that Jesus Prophet Jesus peace be upon him really claimed to be divine or claimed equality
with God, we discussed a number of these issues. And the last basic point really is the term was the term Son of God. And he indicated that the term Son of God would have to be understood in the context of the Bible itself, both the Old Testament and New Testament, we have given a number of references to the Old Testament,
which shows that the term Son of God was used to refer to a prophet or a person, beloved, or accepted by God, if and that term was applied to Abraham, to Israel, and to David, and to many other prophets. In the past. You have seen also that in some of those references, like in Jeremiah, chapter 31, that even the term
my first born son actually has been used as a term. And it is in that spirit that one can understand what is the nature of the term Son of God, he made also a number of references to the New Testament itself. And you have seen like in the book of Romans, for example, that Paul was saying that as many as lead are guided by the Holy Spirit, they are sons of God, which shows that both in the Old and New Testament, the term Son of God, in simply someone who is beloved by God, it's not really a reference to divinity.
Now, some suggest that is true, that we are all children of God, but in the allegorical sense. Now, however, some claim that there is a special and a different sonship of Jesus to God, and that the Bible refers to him as the early and I repeat the only begotten Son of God, how would you respond to that? One, I don't have to respond even before referring to the new edition, a relatively new edition of the Bible, the term the only son of God, the only begotten Son of God is a very, very famous statement. It is known as john 316. That's in the Gospel According to john, chapter three, verse 16. And this for nearly 2000 years has been one of the most frequently quoted verses from the
New Testament, the only begotten Son of God. And that's why we find that the past many theologians kept insisting that Jesus is bigots, and not meant, in other words to show that he was he was defined. But I would invite the viewers to check in a copy of the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, and check under john 316. You will notice that it says in the footnotes, that other ancient authorities
do not include the term effects in the new standard edition. It doesn't say the only begotten Son of God. It simply says, the only son of God, and the terms because he was struck, when the term forgotten would not have been dropped, of course, had not been that has not been for the discovery by the biblical scholars, that apparently this word was not really authentic. It's a very famous term.
But even if you take the term, only son without the garden, which of course would make a big difference in terms of implication,
one must understand that again, in the context of the Bible itself, cannot be taken literally that day. There's only one person who's really the Son of God, other people are on a different meaning or a different plane altogether.
Because in the Bible itself, we find that
From the references we made last interest program, for example, that a Brian at that time was called Efrain was called my firstborn or the firstborn son of God. Alright, Israel was his descendant was also called in the book of experts, they Son of God,
my only son, my firstborn. So Abraham was called my firstborn.
His name was called my firstborn. David, who came afterwards, according to the Psalms, was also called the the, the firstborn son of Gracie is my point. If we take it literally, we are really in a very impossible situation. How could Abraham or Abraham, be the first born and don't who came after him is also the firstborn and are looking after both of them is the firstborn son of God, it cannot be taken like that. But like when you love a particular son, Ensign, he is my son, he is my only son, it doesn't necessarily mean that you know, his divine and other people are human. Anyone who is divine or shares, divine attributes cannot be taken in that sense, or else it would not be
consistent with the with the Bible itself. Very good. Let's, at this point, examine Another common title of Jesus by that I'm referring to Lord. Now what does that title exactly mean? Well, again, if we take the term Nord, and equate it with divinity, then the British Parliament is full of Gods because you have the House of Lords.
linguistically speaking, we know that the term Lord doesn't necessarily mean God. Lord means masters, human mustard. Also, we find that
in the Hebrew tradition,
the term even was used to refer to a teacher, not here actually, also teacher, religious teachers, Prophet, you know, something of that nature.
Obviously, when we talk about Lord as equivalent to God, or something of divine nature, then if we're really talking about the one and only Lord of the Universe, in that case, you can say, all right, God is the Lord capital of the universe. But the fact that Jesus was caught Lord than other people would count Lord has nothing to do really with with divinity.
After his teacher, he has no problem. Well, how about the title of Messiah is that not related in some form to divinity, when the term Messiah can never be really equated at all, with divinity or with God at all, in order to appreciate that one has to also go back to the origin of the term itself, and how it was used, again, within the context of the Bible, not really talking about the imposition of far fetched interpretation of the Bible, but within the tradition of the Bible itself.
We find that the Hebrew and Jesus was said to have spoken, you know, Aramaic, which is like the colloquial Hebrew.
The Hebrew word is mushy machine,
which is equivalent, those who know Arabic to the term machine,
This is equivalent in Greek to kristus, which of course in English, the term Christ, of course, is well known.
If you refer to the original Hebrew word, machine,
which is the key term here, we find that actually it means someone who's appointed, that is chosen for a given office or position, or anointed. And it was a custom among the Hebrews two, for example, and anointed kings, in some cases, profits with oil.
So it has nothing to do really with wasted energy. Many people were referred to as, as machines, or masanga. In fact, for example, in the Psalms of David, Sam, number two, in verse two,
David is referred to as mushiya for underrated Messiah, which is actually the equivalent
in the book of Isaiah, chapter 45. In the first verse, Cyrus, the person is also referred to as as machine or the anointed.
In fact, there is not only one, Messiah in that sense, but there are many Messiah or
anointed people have chosen people. The only thing that seemed to cause confusion some time in the minds of some Bible readers, is that when it speaks about Jesus
Usually it uses capital in Messiah.
And it talks about other people like Cyrus, like David or other personalities in the Hebrew or in the biblical tradition, we find that it's translated as anointed,
delivers. Or some other term. It checked with one of my colleagues at St. Mary's, Professor Tobin. And I asked him actually, that was in a public lecture I said, Why are these translated differently? Is it because the original terms were different? Is it new? In all of them, it really use the term machine in Hebrew. So the problem here is consistency really have a translation they should have all either be translated as Messiah, or anointed or appointed or delivered. But they seem to be some deliberate attempt in order to put Jesus in a different category than others, even though the term was identical in reference to Jesus and two other
others before him. So I think it is within that context of the biblical quotations and usage of the term that we can understand what is meant by Jesus is in sight. Yes, as far as I'm concerned, Jesus was Messiah, anointed, appointed, delivered in the sense also that applies to other prophets, or personalities in the Hebrew tradition.
Now, it's sometimes suggested that the title of savior refers uniquely to Jesus like to ask you, first of all, if that's true, the second about how that effects the question of divinity. Okay, the logic, I think, first is to address whether it's true or not. From my humble knowledge of the Bible, it is definitely not true. And the documentation is found right in the Bible. In the second Book of Kings, in chapter 13, verse five, we find that a man by the name of Jehovah has was called surgery. I read the quotation here it says, Therefore, the Lord gave Israel as Savior. The Lord gave Israel a savior, so that they escaped from the end of the series.
Not only this, and to show that the term saviors has nothing to do with divinity or divine nature at all, that the term Savior is used actually, in the plural in some places in the Bible. For example, in the book of Oba diah, in verse 21, there is no chapter because that's one chapter book. It's a very, very short book, or one chapter, in verse 21, of the book of a diet. It says, and I quote, for years, the plural said, yours shall go up to Mount Zion. Tarun mount is how, and the kingdom shall be the Lord's second example that shows again, the use of the term in the plural. In the book of Nehemiah, chapter nine, verse 27. And again, it says, I'm just skipping getting to the point.
According to the great nurses, there, we did just give them save years that God gave the Israelites save yours in the Quran.
But even if we take the term Savior, in a sense of not only saving from enemies, or persecutors, but saving in the sense of selling from sin,
you'll find again, the statements in the Old Testament are quite clear,
straightforward. If you're, for example, to the book of Isaiah, in chapter 43, in verses 10 and 11, that you may know, and believe me, and understand that I am he that God speaks that I am he before me, no God was formed, nor shall be any after me, I am the Lord. And besides me, there is no savior.
God speaks and says, besides me, there is no savior. If you continue in the same chapter, for example, in verse 13, it says, There is none who can deliver from my hand so that is be delivered. In verse 14, it says, best faith, says the Lord, Your Redeemer,
Redeemer, your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel. And nobody, of course, among the Israelites have ever considered God of Israel, and the Trinitarian form which is developed much later on.
To conclude, what I'm saying basically, is that the term savior was used for other than Jesus, it was used in the neuron and even when it's used in a sense of
The one and only Savior. It doesn't apply to Jesus, Mohammed or Abraham or anyone. It applies to God alone who says all of us, including Jesus and Moses and everyone else. And on the occasion of speaking about the titles of Jesus in the in the Bible,
it is interesting to notice that some Christian biblical scholars discovered that they seem to be some sort of evolution in the title given to Jesus depending
on which writings preceded which, especially in the matter of Titans, in the identical incidents, the identical studies will find the same device, it does not appear consistently on the same meaning in both cases. And if we wish to take
the opinions of many modern biblical scholars,
they indicate that, unlike what has been believed, before, it seems that the Gospel of Mark precedes the Gospel of Matthew, it's not the same order that they appear in the light. But they seem to have found some evidence they place the date of authorship of the Gospel according to Mark, somewhere between 60 days 60 and 75. Whereas the Gospel of Matthew is placed somewhere between 75 and 90, they use 90 in the Common Era.
And many of them have analyzed and studied how Jesus was referred to in this gospels, and they came up with the conclusion that there seemed to be an evolution in innovation, a graduate innovation with the passage of time of Jesus from, you know, a symptom, Prophet human being, to refer to him in such terms that gave rise to this notion of divinity, like Son of God, alone.
Seems like an interesting point, maybe you could elaborate on that. Well, to start with, I want to make it clear, again, as I said, several times since we started this section, for this portion of the programs, this is not just somebody else's opinion, or imposed on the Bible, that somebody who doesn't accept the notion of Jesus ever claimed to be divine, it is, after all, basically, there is also studies of many Christian biblical scholars themselves who spent their lives studying this matters. And I'd like to give at least one reference for example, the john Milton SPM T, or in john C. Fenton, in his book sadness, you know, his analysis of massive published in 63, and others who
wrote about Luke and others, if you really compile what they write and observe
what they conclude, it's really, as you said, it's quite interesting. I give you a few examples. This is a very important issue, ad. Take, for example,
the Gospel according to Mark, in chapter 10, verse 41, Jesus was requested to let the sons of God set on his right hand and his left hand in the kingdom of God.
He answered them that it is not mine to grant, it is not up to me to grant them to sit in this way, but it is for those for whom it has been prepared. See, in the neutral sense, can you say that the places would be for those,
you know, for whom this was, has been prepared, you compare the same instrument identical, it's the same kind of story. And the Gospel according to Matthew in chapter 20, verse 23, you find that one edition appears there. It says, For whom it has been prepared by my father.
See the funny the term my father's or by my father, in edits in the second story, again, giving you the time sequence, it's quite interesting how the elevation of the status of Jesus have evolved over time. A second example, and the Gospel according to Mark in chapter eight, verse 29. When Peters asked Jesus, who he was, and Jesus answered, our Peter answered, You are the Christ. You are the Christ. In the identical story, in Matthew 16, verse 16, that's chapter 16, verse 16, we find that one important addition is put, it says you are the Christ and that he adds the thrill of the living God.
Notice the son of the lender that didn't exist to mark.
Exactly. In Mark chapter nine, verses four and five, we find that Peter addresses Jesus as moustache or rabbi, which is a common term
and the identical story in Matthew 17, Chapter 17 verse four, referring to
A strongest term used by by Peter, Lord, Lord, which could give some confusion like I mentioned before, some people say, Lord, does that mean just Master? Or does it mean also the Lord's God?
In chapter nine, verse one,
it says again, that Jesus, some people were standing there, and he said that those people are some of those people standing here will not taste death, until they see the kingdom of God, coming with power, Kingdom of God,
in the identical difference in Matthew chapter 16, verse 28, instead of saying, The kingdom of God, it says, until they see the Son of Man coming in His Kingdom, well, that's the measures.
Talk about the kingdom of God, it could mean lots of things. But when you say, The Son of Man coming in His Kingdom, obviously, the reference is quite different. I'm leaving aside Now whether this prophecy was achieved or not, and whether this could have been really uttered by Jesus because it never happened. People in his lifetime did not see the second coming of the Son of Man. But anyway, you need that for the time being. A fifth example, in the Gospel according to Mark in chapter nine, verse 17, Jesus is addressed as teachers,
in identical story in Matthew chapter 17, verse 15, is addressed as loads. Sixth example, in Mark chapter 10, verses 47 and 847 48. It's paper called Jesus, you know, to blind people in Jesus was passing, we're calling you and say, Jesus, son of David.
So the term Jesus was used
in Matthew, in the same reference effect to the sentence, and we find that son of David doesn't say Jesus is not uttered just Son of David.
It is interesting to notice that even
in the new edition,
that is in the Revised Standard Version of the Bible,
there is an indication of some early editing that must have taken place. Again, this is not my word, you can check the Bible itself in a Revised Standard Version. And you'll notice that in the very beginning of the gospel, according to Mark, that's chapter one, verse one,
it says, the beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God,
And the Revised Standard Version in the footnote it says, other ancient authorities omit the Son of God. Other ancient authorities omit the Son of God, but again, a major change exactly a major change and seem to show again, the attempt on the part of the writers to place Jesus in a position that he never really claimed for himself. Another example is in the Gospel, according to Mark
in chapter three, verse 32. And it says that the crowd said to Jesus, peace be upon him. Your mother's and brothers are waiting outside asking for you.
Okay, your mother's and brothers. In the Revised Standard Version, it says that some early or other early authorities add, and we're sisters,
this I find quite fascinating, and some scholars have been reflecting on that. Because you said when you say your, your mothers and brothers are waiting? Well, it could be like Jesus Himself said that anyone who does the will of God is my brother and my mother.
But when you say your mother, your brothers and sisters, are waiting for you or asking for you. Well, it could also mean that but it could also mean that it is quite possible that Mary, peace be with her, after she gives birth to Jesus might have given birth also, to other brothers and sisters of Jesus. But apparently, somebody would have been interested to turn it down so that nobody would start thinking well, if Jesus is the Son of God, what will happen to his other brothers and sisters coming from the same room from the same mother? Mary, and this is an open question again, whether it is just a symbolical brotherhood or did Jesus has brothers and sisters from from his mother.
That's why we find like I said, many biblical scholars, including john symptome, say that there is an obvious alteration in manuscripts, especially in the aliens, which speaks of the titles of Jesus. Now, how about the perfection of Jesus, as this God alone is perfect.
That imply that Jesus is divine? No, not a source. In fact, the reference to perfection, or one of the references, I should say to perfection is what has been said about Jesus, by Peter. And again, in a previous program we discussed To what extent can you accept statements made by outsiders and not claimed by Jesus Himself not being heard from the horse's mouth like they say, but that's a taste. For example, in the second Peters, second letter features chapter one, and verse 19, describing Jesus peace be upon him as a land without blemish. However, if you really refers to the Bible itself, it just means the Gospel according to Matthew, in chapter five, verse 48, it says, on
the court, you therefore, people are adjust you therefore, must be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect. These are the words of Jesus.
It is obvious here that Jesus is not speaking at all He is about perfection, in the absolute sense, because perfection is absolute senses, equality, that applies to God unknown.
But when we say, Jesus is a perfect, perfect man, no problem, because
he's not the only human. And nor does human perfection, automatically mean divinity at all.
When we speak about prophets, great prophets and messengers, history,
and you say that they were perfect. We're talking here about human perfection, because otherwise absolute perfection belong to Jesus admitted in Matthew 548, that human beings also can be perfect. It doesn't expect them to be perfect, absolutely no does that mean
divinity at all? So the term perfection does not necessarily mean divinity at all. It has a perfect human, but still a human.
Now, a few more issues need further explanation. For example, it's argued that the Old Testament prophesized the coming of Jesus, and it's filled with, quote, unquote, the Holy Spirit. Now, how do you understand these references? Why do we have to refer to the Bible itself? You don't have to give it any a personal opinion, so long as the Bible itself seem to answer that question in some way or the other. Now, if we say that because the Bible prophesied the existence of Prophet Jesus peace be upon him and this means divinity, or the way that people later on developed the idea of Trinity,
then how do we explain the following in the book of Molokai, and acsi, Molokai? In chapter four, verse five, we find that this particular quotation is referred to quite frequently and prophesied the coming of Prophet john the baptist.
Now, if we say that because someone was prophesied in the, in the Old Testament, and this came to pass, it means divinity, then would anyone say that john the baptist is divine, because there was prophecy. It's a very, very weak argument.
Now, to say that Jesus was filled with the Holy Spirit, you find that the Bible indicate that there were others also other human beings like Jesus, who are also filled with the Holy Spirit. In the book of Acts,
chapter 11, verse 24, we are taught that St. Barnabas was an ideal it actually didn't taste for he was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit, and faith. And we find this is not the only reference. There are differences in Luke chapter 141, in Acts 532, in many other differences, as far as the question of,
you know, being filled with the Holy Ghost, you find that even in the Gospel, according to Mark, in chapter one, verse 15, it says about john the baptist that he was filled with the Holy Spirit, even in the womb of his mother.
So we're gonna have to
end it over here. I don't think you've had full time. Your first question. Maybe we can continue next week. But thank you very much.
And thank all of you for joining us here in a second focus, but appreciate any questions or comments and our phone number and address will be appearing on your screen. From all of us.