Channel: Jamal Badawi
Series: Jamal Badawi - Jesus
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And welcome once again to
today's program will be our 18th in our series on Jesus, the beloved messenger of Allah, a topic tonight, miracles and Divinity. I'm your host Rashad Mimi's and here with me from St. Mary's University, Dr. Jamal Baddeley.
Could you please give us a summary for the benefit of our viewers of last week's program? Okay, in the previous program, we
discussed some of the responses that were given by what I consider to be, let's say, an apologetic writers.
After we have discussed in several programs, the very clear statements made by Jesus peace be upon him to the effect that he is subordinated to God, that He is the servant of God that He is simply the creature of God implying quite clearly a subordination to him.
Just try for the sake of
broader understanding, try to find out how will these clear statements responded to and among those who still insist on the divinity of Jesus, and he gave the example from the book written by Reverend Nancy Johana. And it was quite obvious from analyzing his responses, the that he goes in a roundabout way, trying to simply explain our very clear and obvious statements, that Jesus simply said that the father or God is greater than he was. And I tried to respond to some of those replies also to indicate that this is not really a way to explain it, and that the clarity of the statements made by Jesus are definitely more authoritative and more important than apologetic responses which
are based not really on objective evidence, but it appears to me that it's based on prior theological commitments,
sometimes claimed that the deeds and the miracles of Jesus are themselves a strong proof of his divinity. Now, how would you assess this line of reasoning? What this line of reasoning is not a common, I'm not saying it's universal, there have been some more enlightened theologian now who no longer refer to the Americans of Jesus peace be upon him as a proof of divinity.
But, like you indicated, it is actually a very, very common type of argument among many.
typical example of this is
brochure that was distributed at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, in the context of a Muslim Christian Bible.
Basically, the two clergy who prepared that booklet, or that brochures
for this kind of reason, they said, First, Jesus was able to change the waters into wine, then he must be the masters of quality.
Jesus cured a person from a distance, then he is the masters of distance.
He cured someone who was
than that he is the master of time. He said, multitudes of people with a small amount of food, and then they say that he is the master of quantity. He worked on waters or stemmed the stone, ie is the master of natural laws.
He brought Lazarus
who was already dead. He is the master of life and death.
He cured a person who was blind, ie he is the master of misfortune. In my humble understanding, this line of argument is very simplistic, and it is deficient in many respects.
Because if we, for example, go back to the Bible itself. And we all know what happened to Prophet Moses, that his can was changed into a huge snake. And if we use the same line of argument like these two clergy have used, then we can say that users also had control on quantity, or control on natural nodes. And this type of thinking might lead us, in fact, to claim that Moses was behind. And nobody ever said that no Muslim said that no Christian or Jew, even for that matter had ever said that. In addition to this, we all know that many prophets in the past, according to the Bible itself,
did play some, or perform some napkins, if you will.
But we all know again, that it was not because of their own powers, that these miracles were done, in fact, by the power of Him who sent them by the power of God as an evidence or clarification of the truthfulness of their Prophethood, and as a challenge for those who are trying to reject them. And indeed, the Jesus peace be upon him was no exception, as we indicated before, one of the famous statements unequivocal statement demand, according to the gospel of john, in chapter five, verse 30, as he said, If I do nothing, I can do nothing of my own authority, I can do nothing of my own, or what could be more, you know, straightforward and clear, then, to indicate that Americans as well as
the knuckles of all of the prophets were, indeed, by the power of God, not by their personal power. And furthermore, may I just add one more point that it is not quite true or accurate as some may think that the miracles of jesus peace be upon him were unique, even if we assume for the sake of discussion that they were unique uniqueness doesn't mean divinity. But we'll discuss that in the previous program. But factually speaking, the miracles relating to Jesus peace be upon him are not unique, according to the Bible.
Well, yes, it's interesting, you should say that, so why not take the example of the virgin birth, for example, which we've discussed before? Would that not be an example of a unique category of miracles? Well, we cannot really consider it unique. in a broader sense, you can say it's unique. And as indicated earlier, of course, uniqueness is not the equivalent of
divinity. But unique on the one restricted sense that Jesus peace be upon him is the only human being known to us. And this is an important reservation known to us,
who was created in the womb of his mothers, without the agency of a human father.
Now, I'm saying that on the basis of the authority of both the Koran as well as the authority of the Bible, the New Testament,
and I say, unknown to us, and according to authority of these two scriptures, because we all know, or at least someone who has access to this information, realize that they have been a number of other human beings, who have been believed to have been born of virgins. That includes many of the Mediterranean sun gods, such as attis. Adonis was also known as the news, Dionysus, Osiris miftah.
In ancient India, also, Krishna, was believed to have been a miraculous incarnation of Vishnu. In the world of Devaki. Buddha was also believed to have been born of virgin Maya, will come to this mythical Gods later on when we discuss the concept of charity, and probably the historical origins of this ideas. But on the other hand,
as indicated earlier, that's not really unique, even if we say that only Jesus was created in that manner, it is not truly unique, because as indicated in the previous program, if we say that Jesus was created from a woman side, not feminine side,
is also associated from a man side, not from a woman side, and Adam was created from lenders or female side, so not in that sense even there is no uniqueness. In fact, the American of the creation of Adam is even greater because he didn't come from either father
or mother, or father or mother.
there is something quite interesting also that shows that according to the Bible itself, even the
The nature of the verse of Jesus
is not really unique. The reference to that is the book of Hebrews. In chapter seven, verse three, and I read it directly from the Revised Standard Version of the Bible. It's fixed in chapter seven, about mooching subject, who was a king of Salem. And they called him also the priest of the Most High, he was a contemporary, of Prophet Abraham. And he met him and bless him. In verse three, that is, verse three, chapter seven, in the book of Hebrews, it says, and I read it, he is that is much Hasidic. He is without fathers, or mothers, or genealogy, and has neither beginning of days, nor end of life,
but resembling the Son of God, he continues, a priest forever,
that he doesn't have a mother or father. Well, I once was discussing that with a colleague of mine, someplace University. And he said, yo, come on, you can actually take this verse exactly in the literal sense. I said, finally, that we cannot also, why can't we also apply the same principle in when some people keep quoting Jesus saying, I and the Father are one and insist that must be interpreted? Literally, why don't you take it also allegorically. And you have to apply one standard not to apply double standard in whatever we try to understand.
That In any case,
we have indicated previously,
the new notion itself a virgin birth, has absolutely nothing to do with with the benefit and proofreading
shows that God chose to show his creative power in different ways. Through mother and father, which is typical everybody, through
a woman side, not a man side, the case of Jesus through a non side, not a woman side, the case of Eve, through neither side the case
of Adam, in fact, I may add at this juncture, it's not only the question of the virgin birth, I'd say that all other
essential miracles of Jesus on has parallels according to the Bible, I'm not talking about
different prophets, right? Now, are you saying that on the authority of the Quran, or of the Bible? No. In fact, you might have noted that in the last maybe seven programs or so I didn't make a single quotation from the Quran so that nobody might think that what you're trying to understand from the Bible is simply a Muslim interpretation or something that you've imposed on the Bible that has been straightforward quotations from the Bible. So while you might be able to find pediments, to those miracles in the Quran, I'm not using that for the time being, as the source of my references, because the basic assumption we started with in this last few programs, is to try and see what the
Bible is, say itself, within its own context, not by virtue of some other scriptures, which some people, of course, has not yet accepted as authoritative revelation from God. I do realize that what I'm saying might sound like surprising for some people.
It's not very commonly known. But I think as the program unfolds, many viewers might be surprised, some at least that for the first time, they hear about something that they can verify which has been in the Bible, but has never been taught to them. Well, maybe you can give us a few examples to start with, when to keep within the same scene of the Americans, for example, which some believe to be justification to claim that Jesus was divine rather than the human servant of his Creator God.
For example, when we speak about Jesus feeding the multitudes, for example, the blessing of the food, we find that according to the second Book of Kings, in chapter four, verse seven, that prophet Elijah also was able to secure the origin of the riddle.
Related reference also would be the first Book of Kings, chapter 17, verse 16,
about the multitude specifically even, we find that both
prophet Elijah and prophet Elijah
number of people also with a few dogs and ears of corn. The reference to that is the Bible again, the second Book of Kings, chapter four, verse 44.
We are told that because Jesus peace be upon him walked on water, as in Matthew 14, Chapter 14, verses 25 on that he must be divine because he has control of our natural knows. He has to remember also that Prophet Moses also had a similar American. And that was also reported in the book of Exodus in the Old Testament. In chapter 14, verse 22, a similar American is mentioned in the Bible, in respect to Prophet Elijah. The reference to that is the second Book of Kings. In chapter two, verse 14,
the same thing happened also with Prophet Joshua. The reference to that, again is the book of Joshua, in chapter three, in verse 15. It has been said that Jesus must be divine because he was able to cast the difference. But in the New Testament itself, we find that Jesus peace be upon him indicate that others also may have the power to cast Devon's references, Gospel according to Matthew, chapter 12, verse 27, Matthew seven, verse 22, Luke chapter 11, verse 19, again,
we are told that Prophet Jesus must be divine because he was able to cure a person, the person is afflicted with leprosy. The reference to that, of course, is in the New Testament and Matthew, chapter eight verses two and four. But we find again, in the Old Testament, that a similar American was the Prophet, Prophet Elijah also killed a person who was afflicted with leprosy. The name of Batman was nah man in double A and N, after he taught him to wash himself in the Jordan River. The reference the second Book of Kings, chapter five, verse 14, we are taught that Jesus must be divine according to some because he restored sight to the blind, as you find in various places, especially
in Mark, chapter eight, verse 22. But you find similar miracles are reported for other prophets also references the second Book of Kings, chapter six, verse 17, and chapter six, verse 20,
we are told that he must be divine because he was able to foretell exactly certain things that will happen in the future and why this happened with many prophets. I'll give one example in question.
In the first Book of Kings, chapter 20, verses 35 and 36, when a person was told that as soon as he leaves, he will be eaten by a lion. And that's precisely what happened. But in all of these incidents, I have never seen any person, whether from Jewish or Christian background says that this prophets had control of our life, or deaths, or health, or natural laws, and as such, they should be they should be defined. So the argument is very, very neat. We need to take it as an evidence of deification if we take it as an evidence of the deification of Jesus peace be upon him, then all other prophets were designed to.
Well, how about bringing the death to life? Yes, for example, is there any record of a similar miracle in the Bible? He is indeed greater medically. Like, okay, let us remember first before given the example from the Old Testament that the incidents in which Prophet Jesus peace be upon him was said to have brought death to life are three incidents, of course, the most famous of them in the case of Lazarus, as reported in the 11th chapter of the gospel, according to john, but inferring something even greater, that's the example is coming to in the book of Ezekiel, in chapter 37, especially verses one to 14, we are told that he brought multitudes.
multitudes in 1000s when they came back to life, so that's even much greater than what has been attributed to proper genius but nobody ever said that Ezekiel, should be divine.
Elijah prophet Elijah also was said to have brought a dead child to life. reference, the First Book of Kings chapter
17 verse 22, Prophet Elijah, not Elijah, Elijah also was said to have brought a dead person to life. The reference the second Book of Kings, chapter four, verse 34, it is even mentioned, they will be surprised at that it is mentioned even that the mere touch, the touch of a corpse of a dead person
of the bones, when that person was put them just touch the bones of Prophet Elijah,
the dead body stood up on its feet, steps in the second Book of Kings in chapter 13. Verse, statements made by Jesus as quoted in john 530, and others that he does doesn't do anything on his own authority. But here again, are cases of prophets who did exactly the same thing, including bringing that to life. But nobody ever said that they were divine one, should Jesus be considered divine? If others are not?
Well, it is said that Jesus resurrected
Now, how is that to be explained? How would you How would you put that into context he has over overcoming this condition?
Well, to start with, if we take the direction itself, or coming to life after death,
as in itself as evidence, or proof that the person is divine, then what about all of these people that you talked about before? This? Basically, there's nothing that tells us that executive brought to life. Chapter 37 is a key. These people were killed, they resurrected? Why don't we say that this was
one of the Divine because they resurrected? Secondly, I think this is the point perhaps of a common ground between Muslims and Christian Brothers, is that everybody would resurrect in the Day of Judgment, I know there might be some differences, and some say, all right, the day sinful and the wicked, you know, we'd be punished by this thing not resurrect there are differences of opinion. But at least among some, there is this belief that there is reduction, there is punishment and reward, all of us will be resurrected, does that mean that we are designed because we are capable of resurrection? Or will be resurrected?
or need to be resurrected? as the one? Definitely?
And to say, for example, that no, in that case, Jesus resurrected himself is quite presumptuous. Because if the story is accepted, and that's another question,
it is presumptuous to say that he brought himself from death to life, because he mentioned before that everything that he does, is by the power of God. So if we assume for the sake of understanding not to agree necessarily, that Jesus was brought back to life by the power of God, again, that's a no reason to believe in divinity. It happened with other people, as we have seen, amply documented from the Bible. But even then, when I talk about resurrection, I talk with a great deal of caution. Because the story for example, of resurrection, as it used to be reported in the Gospel, according to Mark, and chapter 16, verses nine to 20, we find that some
recent editions are relatively recent editions of the Bible, like the Revised Standard Version, do not include that or put it in the margin and the footnote, that it was found not to be existent in older and more authentic
It is interesting to notice that on the question of resurrection, and that's a topic that you might touch on separately, that Paul was going about, around to teach that Jesus resurrected from the death and he says, according to my gospel, Paul himself saying, according to my gospel, and that's reported in the second book of Timothy, chapter two, verse eight. So what I'm saying basically, that even the question of resurrection is really far from a satisfactory
argument that Jesus peace be upon him was the fine was a human. Okay, let's take another related miracle, for example, the ascension to heaven. Is there any parallel to that?
Once more, yes, there are there is at least one parallel that I know of, in the in the Bible, according to
the book of Genesis in chapter five, verse 24, also according to the book of Hebrews, chapter 11, verse five,
and more specifically, also in the second Book of Kings, in chapter two, verses 11. In particular, where we are told and that last quotation, and the second Book of Kings, that prophet in Asia went up
By when went into heavens went up and he has not been seen afterwards. So he was a prophet reported in the Bible itself to have been raised life to heavens, but nobody said that prophet Elijah is divine by virtue of that. It is interesting, as has been noted in the program some weeks back, that in the Gospel According to john, in chapter three, verse 13, john says, and I quote, no one has ascended into heaven, no one has ascended into heaven, but he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. And that's quite interesting, because that's in total contradiction with what has been clearly mentioned in the Old Testament about prophet Elijah, according to the the second Book of Kings, I
don't know whether john was not aware of that quotation, or somehow tried to ignore it to show that the miracle of Jesus was unique, which in fact, it wasn't, he was a great prophet, just as other great prophets before him, had similar Americans. Prophet Enoch also mentioned about Kim, e n, e. n. o. Ch, again, was said to have
been raised, it happens
is sometimes argued that the miracles of the previous prophets was made
by praying to God and not by your own powers. Now, is there any difference there will
be just to extend that question find me. Some people, even with carry the argument further than say, not only the dis profits perform this miracles by praying to God, but they say the fact that Jesus also said that others are His disciples were supposed to have performed miracles is that they did it only by through Jesus or by, you know, through Jesus might say, but the point here is that they stop at that point. They say that disciples of Jesus, or Peter, others perform those Americans through Jesus. But they don't carry this logic to its logical conclusion, by saying, and Jesus, in turn also did what he did, through the powers of God or by the power of God, as we have seen, for example, in
john five, verse 30, and many others that recorded EKGs program that everything he does is the power or by the hand of he has something by the power of God.
For example, let me refer to a reference that might address this question quite directly.
In the Gospel, according to Luke, in chapter 11, verse 20,
Jesus peace be upon him is quoted to have said that with the finger of God, I cast the desert with the finger of God or cast the even spirits.
thing that is not not not seen by by my finger or by my power path is relating and deferring all that, to the power of God's will, in the name of God, by the condition of God with the power of God.
And this kind of understanding, I think we can say them that
whether we are speaking about the disciple of Jesus, or Jesus Himself, or any other prophet for that message, all of those miracles were not their own innate power, it goes something by way of a divine gift bestowed upon them by their creator, all of them, may peace and blessings be upon them. inshallah, thank you very much.
Thank you all for joining us once again here in Islam and focus. We would appreciate any questions you may have, or any comments that you care to relate to us our phone number, and their address will be appearing in your screen. From all of us. Assalamu alaikum. Hope to see you next week.