Channel: Jamal Badawi
Series: Jamal Badawi - Jesus
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Once again to Islam focus. Today's program will be our 19th on Jesus, the beloved messenger of Allah. Our topic tonight is the application of Jesus, its evolution. I'm your host, Rashad Minish, and here with me from St. Mary's University, Dr. Jemma
Could you give us a summary of last week's program for the benefit of our viewers please? Certainly last week's program was a summary was a discussion I should say, of one of the other basis, one of the basis upon which an argument was made sometimes that Jesus was divine or God.
And that is the question of Americans. We indicated that this basis is not really a very strong one, because we have seen with ample evidence from the Bible from the Old Testament, that virtually all the miracles that have been attributed to Jesus peace be upon him, has also been performed by other prophets before him. And nobody said that these prophets must be divine by their show of performing those Americans. And we indicated that Jesus himself was quoted as in john 530, that he doesn't do anything by his own power, it is by the power of he who sent him that is by the power of God history. And as such, there is no reason really to take that at all as a basis to claim his
divinity. He was a messenger and faithful servant of the Creator.
Well, maybe you can refresh our memory again, about this five basis that you discussed last week. Okay, I think that might be useful, at least as a bridge to the new topic. Well, initially, when we started on the question of the deification of Jesus peace be upon him, we said the arguments are sometimes based
on what has been said about Jesus, the personal opinions or perception about him, by people who wrote about him.
Secondly, what has been attributed to Jesus as saying, which may mean a claim of divinity and you have again discussed that in several programs, I'm sure that none of this,
none of these references at all, provides any conclusive claim of identity. On the contrary, we refer to numerous citations in the New Testament in which Jesus actually denied equality with God. The third was the question of miracles, which are just you just summarized. But in addition to these three, there are two other bases that sometimes are used
to support the notion of deification of Jesus, peace be upon him. One is the question of his message. Some people say it's not important to speak about even words and what has been said or what he said, but his mission, the salvation, the mission of salvation, the mission of love, the mission of atonement, and washing away of sins. And the first one is the personal experience which is related also to that. Now, the issue here is that,
if we really mean by the mission of Jesus, the mission of love and salvation,
if we mean by that, the mission that has been performed by all prophets before him, or after him for that matters,
which means that he guided mankind, to return to establish and inculcate its relationship with the creators.
While considering himself as a servant and messenger and a human being sent by his creators to guide humanity, there will be no dispute or problem. But I think the difficulty arises in comparative study from the document itself about atonement, atonement and sacrifice is very much connected with the assumption of deification of Jesus. In some cases, it is related even to the concept of the Trinity. So it might be useful, perhaps to trace how these documents or ideas developed
Not only in terms of Scripture, but also in terms of historical evolution.
I like to at this point, maybe ask you to define or explain to us the meaning of the term Trinity? Well, if I were to put it in a very brief form, perhaps I could refer you to one difference for those who wish to check on that further. Encyclopedia Britannica, volume 22. That's the 1973 edition, on page 24. Well, essentially,
Trinity in the simplest form is defined, defined as the doctrine which upholds that God is one in essence, yet he is three in person. And the three persons are the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. That's the briefest possible definition
was the basis of Trinity in the Old Testament,
according to specialists and biblical scholars, the answer to that question is no.
I would like to give a reference here is again, for those viewers who might wish to examine the issue further. This is the Encyclopedia of religion and ethics, edited by James Hastings, and Volume One, on page 458.
And I quote, it says the Old Testament could hardly be expected to furnish the doctrine of the Trinity.
I'd like to indicate here that as indicated in previous programs, the fact that this is mentioned already instructed by specialists
makes it rather strange how some, it means some scholars also, because of possibly prior theological commitment, still
try to find some roots of the doctrine of the Trinity in the in the Old Testament. And in the process of doing so they commit errors, which are so obvious that anyone with the slightest familiarity.
Can can discover, for example, a common argument that has been presented is that in the first book, in the Bible, in the book of Genesis, the very first verse, it says that in the Hebrew original, the God is referred to, as below him, below him. And they say that in Hebrew, we have this suffix, you know, I am actually denotes plurality, or when God says, Let us create our image, it doesn't say in my image, but this can hardly be used as a foundation to support the origin of Trinity in the Old Testament. First of all, it is well known that in all human languages or many human languages, Hebrew, of course, is not an exception.
There is also the Iranian language,
a king, human can even when he issues a decree, he doesn't say either, can you give me the king, so it's a language, it's plural, but it denotes synchronous, there's no difficulty with this. Secondly, that even when we speak about the term which connotes pluralities like elegant or
pure ality is not necessarily the equivalent of Trinity, at fidelity could be 2356 100 867, it could be any number, so it's not necessarily supportive,
even if it were,
in addition to this, there are also other Hebrew words used in the Bible, like, for example, in the book of Genesis, chapter 43, verse 14, in Deuteronomy 1318, we find that the aim or the Quran is used, clearly and conclusively, actually to refer to the singular not really to reality within that, in that sense, then we can conclude that there is no basis whatsoever, really, of the concept of the Trinity in the Old Testament. One may add even that the concept of it may even be contrary to the context of the opposite. When you said that
this class of students may be contrary to Old Testament, maybe you like to elaborate on that and tell us exactly what's meant. Okay, we thought it would approach the same approach that we did when we discuss the question of deification of Jesus looking at statements which were purportedly presented to support his dedication but the other side of the coin also
statements in which he rejected and demanded equality with that. So by the same token, it's not enough simply to say that, you know, the terms or endorsement has nothing to do with the designation of the Trinity. But I think it's useful also to examine as to whether there is a counter evidence in the assessment, to the effect of negating any concept of generating cause plurality of persons in godhood. It's only logical to
look at it from both point of views. So by that, I mean that the Old Testament is full
of references, it is quite consistent throughout, in the confirmation of the absolute oneness of the God, God, the Creator, not persons within God's absolute radical oneness, absolutely.
There is not the slightest hint in the Old Testament,
of the presence of three persons in God's word. And if this idea or doctrine really biblical, there should have been something mentioned about it, especially in a serious matters, like fundamental of the belief, the belief in the Creator, or at least some kind of prophecy or indication that at one point of history,
this three persons somehow will be explained or will materialize in some form or the others, and there is no such evidence that you can discern from the artist.
On the other hand, we find that the citations to the effect that God is one, absolutely one and there is no persons in that booth is totally indivisible.
Almost endlessly. Of course, starting with the famous, the Shema, the chemistry that I condition, in the book of Deuteronomy, chapter six, verse four,
Israel, the Lord our God is One Lord is one Lord doesn't say three and one, one Lord. It is interesting to notice that in some translations of the Bible, like the Revised Standard Version, it says that other versions use terms like the Lord is our God, the Lord alone, the note alone.
Another citation is also in the book of Deuteronomy, chapter four, verse 39, which says, The Lord is God, in heaven, alone, and on earth.
There is no other there is no other. Again, there is no basis here of speaking about three persons in one.
In the book of Isaiah, chapter 44, verse six,
God speaks there and says, I am the first and I am the last besides me, there is no god besides me, there is no God.
Of course, if you assume any eternal being that existed alongside with God, that would definitely be contrary to what Isaiah is quoting.
we find that reference, for example, before no God was formed, that's an idea also know God was formed. Nor shall there be any after me, I am the Lord and beside me, there is no savior. Besides me, there is no savior. One can also check on that. The Book of Isaiah, chapter 45, verse 18, these are only examples. But there are dozens, literally, of citations like that, in the Old Testament, affirming the absolute Divine unity, absolute oneness of the
Trinity, does not have a basis in testing. Is it safe to say that is based entirely on the New Testament
about the New Testament, there is no basis for the changes, and it will be showing that it is a doctrine that actually evolved over time without a foundation in neither the Old Testament or the New Testament.
To clarify that and to show that this is just outsider's opinion or anything like that I refer to again, when respected women sources, the first Encyclopedia Britannica, 73, edition, volume 22, page 241. And the quote, says neither the word 20 that is,
nor be explicit duction as such, appears at any one place in the Bible.
In the Encyclopedia of religion and ethics cited the third published in 1962 in volume 12 page
it says that in the New Testament, we do not find the doctrine of the Trinity in anything like it's developed form, not even in depth for me, and German theology, not even in the theology of Paul and john,
it becomes quite clear from this, that biblical scholars themselves do not claim that Trinity is based on either the Old Testament, or even the New Testament for that matter. But it is interesting that some scholars refer to the New Testament
with a very serious attempt to find any Indirect Proof somehow
helped them find some traces or roots of charity. But in that attempt, we find that the human fallibility and the human interpretation actually seeking to impose
what they really wanted to read in the text, which is not necessarily there. And as indicated, in matters of fundamental beliefs, should not be left to human fallibility and should not be left to somebody trying to destroy things between the language might not necessarily be their matters of learning should be close and should be quite conclusive. And that's what one would expect from Scripture. It says this is for guidance. What you say may sound a bit surprising. There are many Christian friends one poem, that is actually conclusive evidence of Trinity in the New Testament,
what I'd like to say, first of all, that sounds surprising. It's not because if it's an opinion of any outsiders, it is, as indicated earlier,
statements made by the specialists by biblical scholar themselves, they spent their lives studying and analyzing the Bible. So it's not my opinion, I disclaim credit for that.
Analysis. In conclusion,
I just give you an example of the people that I quoted, for example, James Hastings, is a well known biblical scholar, he has several works,
one of which which is quite famous is called the dictionary Dictionary of the Bible.
The kind of
evidence which can be, or some people
may relate to the support of the concept of Trinity, are either inconclusive
and authentic, or at times even.
might be going to set this point to give a few examples of what scholars major scholars that considered that there is really no conclusive evidence for for Trinity. Okay, one of the most
common things that has been frequently referred to as an evidence in question of the origin of Trinity, isn't the Gospel according to Matthew, chapter 28, verse 19, where it is attributed to Jesus peace be upon him that at the end of his mission on Earth, he addressed the disciples and said to them, could go therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.
if it was true, or if it was true, I should put it this way. If it was true that Jesus actually said that the fact that he mentioned the Father and the Son and the Holy Ghost does not necessarily mean that he spoke about Trinity, that these three are one in one God truth.
In fact, if that's what he meant, he would have said in the name of the Father, and the Son and the Holy Ghost, which is one God, but he didn't say that. So the words does not necessarily signify that it is just like when you tell someone, I implore you, I implore you, in the name of your family, in the name of your country, in the name of humanity, that you should do this or that this does not necessarily mean that there's any particular charity, nor does it mean that your family and your country and humanity are one and the same thing. There is still a clear distinction there. So that does not necessarily signify that.
But the point here is that
according to history, and others
prolene in German theology, that's a birthstone and john
could not even in his understanding as a miracle scholar, provide any support
for the concept of agility, in addition to this, we should add also that even these references are made. The biblical scholar themselves are not quite certain whether this word verbatim the words of Jesus peace be upon him or something that perhaps, might have been attributed to him. To give an example of this, I'm referring even to a very, what people might call, perhaps, orthodox reference. And that's the new Catholic Encyclopedia on volume 14 page to see what the writer there will be discussing this baptismal formula. And he says that we are not quite sure, or he says that assuming that this
word, in fact, the words of Jesus,
leaving the door open, when you say that, it might have been, or open at least the possibility that this might have been an earlier baptismal formula. So even then the the way it is put in, in the Catholic and sacred, they seem to open the door,
that there is a question mark here, really, whether these are indeed the words of Jesus or a baptismal formula that were used. But in any case, even if it's already used it, that's far from satisfactory evidence of
that you mentioned also, that there was some evidence that was proven to be
authentic, can you be more specific, and maybe give us some references to that effect. This is a very well known and famous quotation that I'm sure biblical scholars and gathering was familiar also, with the Bible, are very aware of.
This is what used to appear in older editions of the Bible, like in King James Version, for example, in the first edition of john, chapter five, verses seven, verse seven, first epistle of john, chapter five, verse seven, this used to be a very, very favorite quotation that trinitarians used to present as a clear evidence of Trinity,
because it is attributed to Jesus in that a string instead, that could be found, by the way, it contains translations. And it says, four, there are three, that record in heaven, the fact that the word and the Holy Ghost, and these three are one, this is the crucial part of the statement, and these three are one. And that is, as far as you can get, or as close I should say, as you can get to anything that resembles a concept of changing. That is why
it was used in the past, as a conclusive argument, a conclusive evidence, you might say that, you know, the roots of Trinity is right there in the,
in the Bible.
But aside from the fact that this is not the words of Jesus, but rather the words of john, and as such, it might reflect his own personal opinion or his own interpretation, aside from the fact that that statement does not appear
anywhere in the other three synoptic gospels. So it makes you a Mark and Luke did not necessarily share with him, that's a statement or anything that comes with this kind of more explicit expression.
I find that the biblical scholars have already discovered
that that particular quotation, that particular verse is not authentic. It was not in older editions. And as such, it has been actually dropped. It has been dropped, expanded, actually.
As we're working, perhaps check the Revised Standard Version of the Bible. You can check also the New American Standard Bible, the new word translation for scripture, which is used by Jehovah's Witness. And that verse is no longer there. It doesn't say even some additions included or some older manuscripts included as we have seen in previous programs, it has been simply totally new. It shows clearly that the researchers biblical scholars, after a very painstaking research have found that this is not an authentic statement. Even john himself didn't actually say
one compelling some versions of the Bible, particularly between King James and the Revised Standard Version.
Right I noted already with the
The this verse has been dropped from the Revised Standard Version.
Something really attracted my attention that in the Revised Standard Version of the Bible, many times whenever something was struck or changed or not included in the text, usually there's some explanation that
this does not appear in not authentic or an ancient manuscript. But in the case of that verse, it has been dropped without a word. There's absolutely no explanation. There's nothing to indicate that previously, such and such verse used to be included in the first episode of junk but now is dropped in that does not appear in the text where the chapter or the episode of john is structured.
Secondly, the question that may arise here is when one home verse is dropped, after it has been part and parcel of the Bible, so more than 74, you're talking about maybe 19, more than 1900 years? How could that be consistent with some of the claims that some might wish to present above the immutability and
change ability, the absolute unchanged ability of the Word of God? And that's why they claim of course, the web from the agency is absolutely free from Earth, and it's verbatim Word of God. And they quote the Bible itself by saying that there will be absolutely no change in the Word of God, how could that be consistent with it? If the consensus of the specialist is that there was something good, which was not the word of God, that has been judged.
The other thing that I noted in the Revised Standard Version also, is that while the entire verse was dropped, that is,
verse seven, in chapter five, in the first lesson of john,
I noted that the number of verses in that chapter was unchanged, since 21, verses four, chapter five, that attracted my attention, and they kept quite carefully review.
The verse by verse in the two versions contains and develop.
And I discovered that the translators of the Revised Standard Version of the Bible have simply split the verse number six, and made it into two. And as such, it consumed the dropping of that verse. In other words, any leader would find that in King James, there's 21 verses in the Revised Standard Version, there are 21 verses even though they are not identical, because one verse actually would have been totally removed. Another verse has been split, so that the number would appear the same. But in any case,
what we're saying, basically, is that the foundation upon which any reference was made, that the CR one has no existence at the present time, it is simply an authentic,
leaving aside, even for the time being, a possible explanation. That's even if that verse in the Epistle of john, his own opinion, or understanding was not dropped, if it were not dropped, if it was still part of the Bible, it does not necessarily, again, signifies eternity, because when we say one, that goes back to our previous discussion, what does it mean to say that this one is it is in the same spirit when Jesus say, I and the Father are One that is not one identity, but one in purpose, and we are getting the evidence that the second understanding seemed to be the more valid one that we are one in purpose.
But in any case, the whole issue of duplication of the Jesus peace be upon him, is simply lacking in terms of Foundation, a scriptural Foundation, and perhaps that could be understood more clearly isn't. By examining the historical perspectives of how these dogmas and ideas emerged, Jesus never actually taught
us Thank you very much. Thank you, by the way.
And thank you all for joining us here in Assam and focus would greatly appreciate any questions or any comments you may have. Please write to us. Our phone number and our address will be appearing on your screen. From all of us. Assalamu alaikum