Channel: Yusha Evans
Nottingham University’s Islamic Society
Discover Islam Week 2011
How the Bible Led Me to Islam? The Story of a Former Christian Youth Minister – Joshua Evans….. The Truth always comes with Proof.
If you have an open mind, let Joshua Evans tell you how he, as a bible scholar and Youth pastor came to embrace Islam because of his study of Christianity.
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Mr de como Rahmatullahi wa barakato
and walk in welcome to all of our guests, when again, by apologizing for my tardiness, had to blame that on British Rail service.
But I'm here so that's the important thing.
To begin, I have to say Alhamdulillah all praises belong to the one true Creator of all that exists.
What stood out to us, sir Mr. rasulillah? And may the peace and blessings of Allah be upon his most noble messenger, Mohammed sub the law, how do you serve them? Well, Allah, Allah He was had he ajumma in and his family and his companions all together.
Why should the La ilaha illa Allah, and I bear witness that nothing has the right to be given worship, except the one true Creator of all that exists.
When the hula Sherry gala, and he is one alone, without a partner?
Well, I should do an Mohammed Abu rasuluh. And I bear witness that Muhammad, ibn Abdullah, some aloha to send them was indeed, the messenger and slave of the one true creator Allah. Now, for me, to give you the entirety of details of my life story, would take more than the timeframe that we have,
of course, and to give all the particulars, even of the couple of year timeframe that led up to the change that got me where I am now would take longer than we have, and I'm not going to keep you very long.
Plus, I am impressed to catch yet another wonderful British Rail service to make it back to London.
So I'm going to give you pretty much the highlights of what I went through,
which may leave some questions to be asked of some of the details, that I may seem to leave some holes in the story. So I want to make that disclaimer that the holes can be filled, but not in the timeframe that we have. So any questions that you have about anything that I may not be able to go through, then you can very, very easily just come and ask me afterwards if the time is allowing. And I will also for my brothers and sisters here be having some, as you see some publications that go through all of the particulars of the things that I am not going to be able to cover step by step detail by detail. And just to let you know, it's almost up to 15 publications just on those minor
details. So you can see the the
great mass of information, but I'm going to talk about that at the end in God willing. I was born and raised in South Carolina. And it's that's a state's kind of in the south east of the United States in a small town called Greenville. And I was born and raised into a Christian household. My grandparents raised me My grandfather was full blooded, Native American from the Cherokee tribe, and my grandmother was full blooded Irish.
How I ended up with a Welsh last name. I have absolutely no idea I can just speculate. But I was raised in a very religious home being that my grandfather was was very involved in our church. He was always helped out on Sundays. He was very good friends with our pastor, our pastor was at our home all the time. I remember growing up seeing our pastor very frequently. My grandmother was very religious, her stickler was praying. She was very, very, very big on praying, we had to pray all the time. When I woke up, we had to pray before we ate we had to pray when this if the The wind blew too hard, she made us pray in the middle. It was just she was very much a person into prayer.
And growing up, the only thing I really knew about my religion in Christianity was what I learned in Sunday School, which Sunday school are, what you learn is the stories of the Bible like Noah and the flood, and you learn the stories of Abraham, and Isaac, which is, you know, the biblical stories, the sacrificial son is Isaac.
We learn the stories of David and Goliath. You know, the stories of Jesus feeding the 5000 with a fish and the loaves of bread and the Sermon on the Mount, and the tides and the trial, crucifixion, death, resurrection story. All of these things are what you learned growing up with the beautiful stories about the Bible, and we sang songs and painted pictures and so on and so forth. And really, that was the crux of what I knew about religion. We weren't very much an avid biblical reading family. Growing up, we had one Bible in my home, which was the big one. It was a huge Bible that sat on the formal living room table in my house and you didn't touch it, because it had the family
genealogy and so on and so forth. It was passed down.
Now all of that changed when I was 14 years old. When I was 14 years old. I began to attend Saturday evening Youth Services.
And Saturday evening youth services were quite different than than Sunday service Sunday service in United Methodist Church was was very dull for me as a as a child, because you listen to the preacher and you stood up and you sung a hymn out of the back of the out of the book and the back of the Pew, and you sat down, you listened some more that was it. But Saturday evenings, we played basketball, we played volleyball, we played dodgeball and football, American football, we eat pizza and cake and candy. And then at the end, the youth pastor would sit us down and give us a sermon 30 to 45 minutes about a issue that related to us, you know, peer pressure, you know, drugs, and you know, anything
that could relate to a youth is what he talked about. And he was a sophomore in high school, and this time when I started. So he talked, he spoken in a language that we really understood his youth, he knew how to reach us on our level. And when I graduated middle school and began high school, I got a ride to school from our youth pastor, because he lived across the street from me and my grandmother, my grandfather had passed away. And my grandmother was battling cancer on and off, so she wasn't really able to take me to school.
So I got to go to school with Benjamin, who was a senior at the time, and that itself was a honorable thing to for freshmen to even be seen in the same car with a senior was was something to do. Not only that, but he was also the class president of my high school. And he was also a pastor, a youth pastor, which is all very honorable titles in the south. And we became very good friends. And through that friendship, he started to take me to something called young life. Young Life is an organization in the states and it is now growing to become worldwide, it is a organization that is put on by youth,
it is completely run by youth, and is completely focused around youth. And when I went to young life, this is the point in my life to where I would say I became
saved by grace rather than by chance. And this is when I truly accepted Christianity in my heart. Because I went there, and it was completely unique. You know, there was the spiritual music we had, you know, the whole, you know, nine guitar and the drums and very, very much music that I could relate to, and there was inspiring, inspiring spiritual, you had people becoming saved, crying, and, and and you had young men and women who were leading the services, who were really, you could tell we're on fire for the message of God, they spoke in a very commanding tone with biblical references, so on and so forth. But it was it was very, very much something that really just attracted me and
cause me to to become very, very
endowed into the religion of Christianity. And when I looked at these young men and women in your life, especially my friend, Benjamin, who was also a minister in human life, I decided at the age of 16, that I wanted to be like these people, because I saw how much they were dedicated to what they did, how they help people, so on and so forth. And I decided that I wanted to be like them. So I told Benjamin, that I wanted to do this, I wanted to become, you know, a youth minister, and possibly, you know, an ordained minister in the church, as well as join young life and become a young life pastor, and so on and so forth. And I really kind of knew what I wanted to do with my
life. At this point, I really felt like this was a calling that was for me. And so he was happy about that and decided that he was going to mentor me so we became even closer friends. Now, Benjamin graduated high school, and he started to attend a small Bible College in my hometown, which is world renowned. Amongst Christian academia. It's called Bob Jones University. And Bob Jones University is a name that is well known amongst Christian academics and biblical scholarship. Even at Camden. I mean, even at Cambridge University when I lectured last year, some of the religious studies, professors knew Bob Jones, they spoke highly of it. And beyond his seminary studies and his
theological studies, he wanted to have a focus in textual criticism of the Bible.
And a textual critic of the Bible
is a textual criticism as a science of Biblical Studies all of its own, that would take me roughly an hour just to give you a synopsis of the science.
But for the benefit of First and foremost, my brothers and sisters here they will understand this and then I will break down the meaning so that our guests will understand. A textual critic of the Bible is kind of like a more hadith of Hadeeth studies. A Mohandas is someone who takes the statements of the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him, and tries to trace down their validity and their authenticity. And there are a great number of Sciences numbering over 50 different sciences in order to do this. They trace back the chain of narration, like who said it and who they heard it from and who that person heard it from. to see if that chain reaches all the way back to the Prophet
peace be upon him. That is one way of giving
Get some verification. And then they study the text of the statement itself to see whether it is verified through other texts, and whether it is in accordance to other statements, so on and so forth. And they study these people in the chain to see how valid and authentic they are so on and so forth. But what the Mohandas is attempting to do is to see whether or not this is a verified statement from the Prophet peace be upon him himself.
And so a textual critic does the same thing with the existing documents of what is now compiled to be the Bible. Because the Bible is coming from the Latin biblio, meaning a collection of books. And those books have been collected from documents that have been found all over the world. And there is a great number of documents numbering almost into the 7000. As of now, which the official record is kept in Germany, of how many documents there are of what we now consider to be the Bible.
And the textual critic has to trace down the validity of these documents, which is a much more difficult science, believe it or not, then a muhaddith has to go through.
For instance, a muhaddith has to only learn one language, which is automatic, and he has to only trace down things that can be verified through other things. Now a textual critic has to learn a number of languages, such as Semitic Hebrew, such as ancient Greek, such as Latin, such as Syriac, such as Aramaic, such as in mean, these are very difficult languages to you know, comprehend, all by their own.
But then even above that, the textual critic has the problem of tracing down the validity of documents that have no original to them, which every single document is verified to be at least a once or twice over copy. And some of those even more than that, and they have been translated some of the only existing copies, we have our translations from a language that we know the author did not speak. So you're already losing something in translation to begin with. And then these all have to be compiled together and weighed against each other. And it's a big science. But this is what he wanted to do.
Because he said that if he was going to preach the gospel of Christ, he was going to do it with authority. And the greatest authority he think that he could achieve was to know the book, that way to have authority in the book from its original languages, from its original documents, so on and so forth.
Now, that intrigued me because I am a perfectionist by heart. And my family says that that's the characteristic about me, that drives them absolutely nuts. Because I am someone who likes to do things a certain way to a certain standard, I do things properly, or I don't do them at all. And if I'm going to do something, I'm going to try to be the best at it. It's just a nature in me, I'm very competitive. If there's someone else doing the same thing that I'm doing, I'm going to try to beat you. And I'm going to be very frank about it. I've always been that way with everything that I do. So I decided, Okay, you know, then let's do this. I wanted to do this at work as well. So as a
sophomore in high school, I enrolled into Bob Jones University, because there's a long waiting list as a small school and it's, it's, it's well recognized. And I decided that Benjamin was going to be my apprentice, or I was going to be his apprentice, he was going to be my mentor for the next three years, whatever he was learning at Bob Jones, I wanted to know it, word for word page for page one, and so forth. So I made him teach me every single thing he was learning. So that by the time I entered Bob Jones, I was already three years ahead of everybody, just part of my competitive nature.
In the summer of 96, everything changed. In 96. Benjamin became very involved in his studies. And so he relinquished full time youth pastoring in our church, he only became part time. And he suggested to youth pastor that I fill in for him.
And the youth pastor, I mean, the the pastor of our church, he knew my family very well and said, okay, even though I was very young 16 he said, I'll give you a chance. So he let me do a couple of services on Saturday evenings at our church. And he attended them and he liked them. You know, he liked the way because he said I was kind of like a spitting image of our youth pastor. So he let me continue to do that until he found someone full time and he wasn't really in a hurry. I also started pastoring and young life and giving sermons that young life in South Carolina in Georgia and in North Carolina, and I also began to lead some of the camps that were being held in North Carolina.
Now, in the summer of 96.
I was asked a question by Benjamin that changed my life. He came to me and asked me Have you ever read the Bible?
And I was kind of taken aback by the question like, What do you mean, you know, do you not remember that I'm doing your job, you know? And now you're asking me if I've ever read the book. He's like, No, no, no, have you really ever read it? Because I had read the New Testament, you know, through and through a
few times I had referenced to the Old Testament quite a bit because I was reading from a, I was using a Scofield Reference Bible in the King James Version. So I, you know, I thought, you know, I know what I'm doing. I got this, you know, I have a good handle on this. He said, No, no, no. Have you ever really read the Bible? Like you would read a novel? Meaning Have you started in Genesis one, one, and have you read through all the way to Revelation at the end.
And because if you've read a novel, you've read it from beginning to end, you can tell me what it's about, you could tell me the cast members, or the you know, the the the people that are in the story, you can tell me how the story goes, how it comes in, in the plot and how it comes in a sense and descends and how it finishes and all these things. And if there's any subplots going on in between, you can you can kind of give me some information about it. And if you've read it like that, then you will be able to summarize it, and you will be able to tell me about it and write a paper on it if necessary.
He said, so have you read the Bible like that? And I said, No, I'm gonna have to admit No, I did not really know of many people, maybe other than our pastor that have ever done that. And I didn't know if he you know, because it's not a norm to read the Bible like this beginning to end. Because it is a collection of books, it is a difficult read to read it like that. And it's just not what most people do.
So he told me, he said, this is a place where we should begin, we should begin at the beginning. Read it from the beginning to the end. Because at this point in my life, I truly believed that God was one. But yet he was in three unique percentages, God the Father, God, the son, meaning Jesus Christ, who was God, and man, fully God and fully man at the same time. And I also believe that when you accepted the blood sacrifice of Jesus Christ, as a redemption for your sins, then you receive the gift of the Holy Spirit's, which was the third percentage of God that lived into Earth inside of you. So he said that if God was inside of us, then he should be able to speak to us through His
Word, he should be able to speak to us. So let us read the Bible in the summer of 96. And see what God says to you and I.
I said, Okay, he said, it may be that we both get something a little bit different in certain places. But let us read it and compare and see what we get.
So I accepted, I said, Okay, let's start. So I began to read the Bible in the summer of 96, from the beginning of Genesis.
And again, if I tell you everything that I saw, that led me to make a life change, that ended me up right here, where I'm standing today, we would run out of time, after time, I will keep you here to morning time, for sure. Because I have just maybe 15 publications that I've put on on video and DVD, that are almost an hour long that have not yet even entailed all of this. So what I'm going to do is I'm going to give you the highlights and give you the summary of what I came up with, like I told you, if you've read it like that, you can give the highlights you can give the summary and you can you can sum it up, and what I may leave out and then you have the opportunity to ask me or get these
publications at the end.
What caught my attention first and foremost, that really led to a change of theology. For me, an ideology for me, was the stories of the prophets. This was the beginning of my questioning phase was the stories of the prophets, because I had learned the beautiful stories of the prophets as a youth.
And so the image in my mind about the prophets of God was that they were great people. They were amazing people, they were God's chosen people to deliver his message to humanity. And they held an auspicious
meaning to me in my mind.
But unfortunately, unfortunately, the depictions of some of the prophets in the Old Testament are not as auspicious, as some of the stories that I may have learned in Sunday school.
For instance, the story of Noah, that we find the Genesis, particularly chapter nine, is a story that caught my attention first and foremost. And it is a story of Noah after the flood when he was dwelling in the land of Canaan. And Noah, there is an incident related by his two sons, that they had went to see their father one day. And Noah had learned that if you take grapes and you ferment them that they become a very tasty drink. That makes you feel very good, which we know now is wine.
And Noah became drunk at one point in in Genesis nine, and so drunk, in fact that his son said that when we went to see our Father, we found him completely drunk on the floor of his home, passed out naked. And they saw him in this condition, their father, no, the prophet of God laid out on the floor drunk naked, and they covered they took one of their garments, and they covered their father's nakedness, but they didn't see it. They said, they just turn their head and they covered him. So that is naked, this would not be exposed and they left him
and they know I woke up and you know, is a long story, but it caught my attention because I said, Wait a minute, you know, this
This seemed to contradict kind of my ideology of God's profits because it goes to the root of credibility for me. You know, for God's profits, God chosen messengers to humanity to believe in delivering the message, to see a prophet of God in this condition just goes to a point of credibility for me as an individual.
For me to see God's prophet so drunk that he's passed out in his home completely naked. But yet the next day, he's telling me that God is speaking to him telling him to do these things, and to build this Ark and to save humanity or whatever, even if it's after the flood, whatever have you. He's still God's Prophet, for him to be telling me now how to live my life. It just is a little bit of an awkward situation for me.
So I asked Benjamin about that. And he was like, Look, just keep reading the book, you know, I mean, don't ask questions yet just read.
I said, Okay, I understood that God can use people who are even bad, and even sinful people, he can still use them as a vessel for his message. And I also understood from Paul's teachings of the New Testament that the law was was was not sufficient to take one
to salvation, and that no one could be perfect under the law, as it says in Romans All have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God. Therefore, I understood that this is a problem that God understood, and this is why he had to send Jesus so I kept reading. I said, Okay, this isn't this is not that bad. Then I got to the story. There's another story in Genesis about a man named lat. Or in Arabic, we know him has looked, and lots was a man. He's not referenced as a prophet in the Old Testament. And there is a difference of opinion amongst biblical scholars there, whether or not he was a prophet. But he was a preacher of Sodom and Gomorrah.
Speaking speaking against the evils of Sodom and Gomorrah, and God eventually destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for their sins.
Now, there's another story about lat that's really, really, really not even a story that is worth relating, other than the simple fact of giving you the premise of the story of how I got to where I am. And if there are young children, Do we have anybody under 13? Here? Under 15? Anybody younger than 15?
Yes, okay. The reason I ask is because I have to change the wording of the story. Because it's not PG rated. It's not it's not pG 13 rated, it's it's explicit. So I have to kind of be careful with my words and choose them wisely. It is the story of lotton, his two daughters, there's a story in Genesis that lat became an old man, and he had no sons, son, no son mean no lineage. And his daughters were very worried about this, because our father died without a lineage, no one to take care of us, no one to watch after us, no one to take care of our father's inheritance, so on and so forth.
So they decided to fix the problem. And the way they decided to fix the problem was that the oldest daughter got their father intoxicated, and she slept with him one evening, and became pregnant by him. And then the youngest daughter did the same thing the next evening. And she became pregnant by him so that one of them could have a son to carry on their father's lineage, father's lineage. And I was like, wait a minute, you know, this is? This is a little bit too much. You know? I mean, it goes beyond credibility. But okay, even if law was not a prophet, why is a story like this? You know, in Genesis, or, I mean, what is the point of view and relating a story like this, for a man that we
look at with a certain characteristic? Why are you going to just tarnish his reputation, you know, with a story like this, because now I look at it as a completely different person.
And again, I asked Benjamin about it. And he told me said, Look, I told you to keep reading it, there's no point in really, you know, going through all of this yet. I said, Yeah. But you told me to see what God says to me. He said, Tell me what God says to you when you get to the end. He said, because sometimes the story doesn't really make sense to you reach the end. He said, sometimes you read a mystery. And you don't really know what's happening. There's so many subplots and crazy things going on that they don't make sense until you get to the end. And then they all come to light. And you understand the whole premise of everything that you read in the story. He said, so
just tell me what it says when you get to the end. I got a long way to go. He said, just keep reading.
I said, I'm gonna ask the pastor about this. He said, don't do that. Just keep reading.
So I said, Okay.
I kept reading and kept reading and kept reading. And I kept seeing things like this, things like this. They just really made me wonder like, Why Why is this here? Why is this here? Why is it so forth? I mean, even the book of Ruth, there's a whole book called Ruth that doesn't even mention God. It's a love story between a man and a woman. And I just saw a lot of things that wasn't getting uncomprehending. Why are they there?
For the sake of time, I'm going to give you the two biggest stories that caught that they really pushed me over the edge in the Old Testament. And it's the stories that are you find in the Second Samuel and Second Kings. And these are the stories of Solomon in David, Solomon and David or Solomon what they do what?
The story of Solomon is beautiful. Solomon was the greatest one of the greatest kings of Israel. He established
The temple mount so on and so forth.
There's another story about Solomon, about Solomon and one of his wives, because it is reported that Solomon had many wives and many concubines, and one of these wives or concubines was an idolatrous, she worship idols. And through Solomon's relationship to her, she enticed him to worship these idols, and he gave in and began to do so. Not only did he begin to worship these idols, but he also built temples, just like the one he built for the worship of one true God, he built other temples to worship these false gods and false idols.
Now, I was at a real contradiction here, because Solomon is God's prophet supposed to be delivering God's message in God's law to humanity. And I know that the first and foremost of that law is that thou shalt have no other God besides me. You should have no other God before me along with me, you worship Me and Me alone.
And but I also know that the children of Israel, were also commanded to obey their Prophet, this was part of the religion obey the Prophet sin to you. So my question now I have to take it to the pastor and to Benjamin was, I have a conundrum here?
If Solomon is God's prophet sent to teach people and they are commanded to obey Him, would they be right? Or would they be wrong? If they followed Solomon in worshipping idols? Would they be right or wrong? Would God punish them for this because they are breaking his principle command of not worshiping anything other than Him? But they are yet obeying His command and following and obeying the Prophet sent to them. So would they be right or wrong? And if they died in this condition, what would be their state? If Solomon died in this condition? What will be his state in front of God? Well, the answer was that he didn't die in this state, he came back, and so on and so forth. So it's
not really of any context, a sin. But that doesn't answer the question is Who are they right or wrong? Should they follow him or not?
So this goes more than a route of credibility to me It destroys credibility because I personnel who is worshipping other gods himself, how can I now trust you and tell me what is from God and what is not from God because you're not delivering God's message. You're not enacting God's message, you are the first and foremost breaking the greatest commandment of God. Therefore, it's destroys completely the credibility of Solomon to me. Now, the story of David is a little bit more evil and treacherous, unfortunately, from the Bible. It is the story of David which we know the story of David is very beautiful. Also, the story of David and Goliath is very beautiful. But there's another story about
David, that's not beautiful.
And it is the story of David and a woman named Bathsheba. Bathsheba was known as a very beautiful woman, gorgeous woman. And David saw her one day on her balcony, and asked and inquired, Who is this woman, though she's the best Shiva. He said, bring her to me. She's so beautiful here are brought to him. And he slept with this woman. And the problem with this is that the woman was married. And David himself was married. So David has just committed adultery with this woman, a punishment, or a crime that is punishable by death, according to the very law that he is in himself, living by and commanded to implement on the earth death, for adultery. So David realizes he has a problem, he has
committed a grave sin. So he decides to fix the problem.
Now, David doesn't fix the problem by repenting to God, we see, okay, maybe it depends later on, we see that in some of the Psalms or whatever have you. But at this point, he doesn't repent. At this point, he decides to write a letter to the army, because the husband of Bathsheba was named Uriah. And he happened to be a commander in the army of David, that was out fighting at the time. So David writes a letter to the army, saying that when the battle becomes fierce, I want you to take your eye and put him on the frontlines, and then abandon him there, so that he dies, so that he is killed. And then the real treachery comes into play is who he gives the letter to, to be delivered. He
actually gives the letter to be delivered to Uriah himself, and makes Uriah deliver his own death note to the army that is going to eventually have him killed. And he ends up getting killed the very way that letter commands him to be killed. So I mean, I stopped and I said that this not only goes beyond credibility, and not only goes beyond wickedness, it goes to treachery at the lowest of levels, that not only are you going to sleep with a man's wife, which is according to your own law in grave sin, Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's wife, one of the great 10 commandments, but then you're going to write a letter to have him killed and make him delivered himself. I mean, this is
just wicked beyond wicked, this is completely evil.
So I'm having a problem now really accepting one of two things. Either there is a problem with these stories, and how they're related to us or there is a problem with these profits. Or there's a problem with that.
The way God chose his profits, I mean, one way or another, there's a problem here. Because
it's beyond credibility. Now, I cannot even trust these prophets around me or my family. Like, for instance, no, I wouldn't leave my five year old son alone with no one. If I saw no one is home, passed out drunk and naked, then I'm not gonna, you know, let my children be alone with Noah. If I if light got anywhere near my daughter's, I'm gonna kill myself.
And if David gets anywhere near my wife, I'm going to kill him myself as well. And I'm not going to even let him around my wife because if something happens, and he likes her, I might be a threat to be killed myself.
So there's a problem. I can't trust you guys, you know, I wouldn't let you into my home. Stay away from me, actually. But yeah, these are God's prophets sent to deliver me His divine message. There is a conundrum here.
So I really tell my pastor, look, there's a problem here, you need to answer this from I don't want to hear any, you know, wash over or waiting over of these stories. I want to know why. Why are these stories here? And what is it? What am I really supposed to get out of this?
I was told what you're supposed to get out of this is that the law that God sent, as we are taught by Paul himself, that the law that God sends is flawed, and that that law cannot take one into salvation, that law is not sufficient enough to take one into salvation. It is for this reason, that God had to send
His Son or himself to sacrifice himself to remove this law from us, and to pass us over into the covenant of grace, rather than the covenant of the law. Because no one can be justified by the law, none can be perfect in front of the law. Therefore, the law cannot lead to justification, it has to meet some of the blood sacrifice in the gift of grace given to us by Jesus Christ.
So if you want to study someone's life,
my pastor told me if you want to study someone's life, go and look at the life of Christ. Because Christ is the fulfillment of that very law, in removing us from that law, which could not lead us into salvation. Now, my question was, so God, since something he knew was inherently flawed to humanity, this is what you're alluding to me, that God sent something as a law and left it in place for 1000s and 1000s of years, that he already knew was flawed, and could not take one justification. But he had to come later on and fix the problem himself, and thus remove us from that flawed law.
This, to me was a problem as well, that God would not already know before sending the law that it was flawed, that God would send anything that is flawed to humanity and tell them to follow it and obey it, which we see throughout the Old Testament, this is very clear. He said, Look, you're asking now questions that are going to lead you to trouble. They're going to lead you to weakness in your faith. I said, weakness and my faith has already entered, we need to fix it, I need to fix it. He said, Go to the life of Jesus Christ, go to the life of Jesus Christ, and you will see the end of the road that you're looking for, you will see the answer to the questions that are being posed to
you now. And you'll understand for sure why things had to come out the way they had to come out, so on and so forth.
I said, Okay, and Benjamin got angry at me. And he told me, he said, did not tell you to keep reading. I said, Well, look, these are huge problems that I need to settle within sight of myself. He said, get to the end, and maybe you'll settle them. So I decided, Okay, I'm just going to read over the Old Testament, but I'm not going to delve into too many more of these things, until I get to the end.
But through reading the Old Testament, because I finished it I had to I promised Benjamin I would. There were some things from the Old Testament, they were quite clear, crystal clear to me. In fact, the number one most crystal crystal clear fact of the Old Testament was who God was. There was no ambiguity about this in the Old Testament whatsoever, who God was, and that God was one. First and foremost, the first and foremost fact that you see over and over again in the Old Testament is God is one. He is one in one alone here, O Israel, the Lord that God is one that shall love them with all their heart with all they might Hear, O Israel, I am the Lord your God and there is none else.
In Isaiah we see I am the Lord your God and there is none beside me. In Isaiah we see again God asks, Is there any like unto me that you can compare to me? Is there any like me? No, I am God, there is none like me, we see this kind of statement over and over again.
And the word God uses for his oneness, in the Old Testament in the Hebrew language is a very unique word. And it is a word that signifies one uniquely, one uniquely one without a two. For instance, for my brothers and sisters here, they will understand this connotation. And our guests will understand that if I explained it this way as well from the Arabic language, when when we look at the number one in Arabic, what is it
warheads. warheads signifies one. Now if you take warhead and you add it to warhead, what do you get?
If name you get two, you get two, one plus one equals two, correct? What is the word that is used for God's oneness?
I had, I had correct, coming from the same root word, but it signifies something quite different. Because if you take a head, and you add it to a head, what do you get?
You can't exactly you can't, you cannot add a head and a head, they do not even linguistically make sense. Because I had signifies one, without a second being capable to be added to it, or without anything being able to be subtracted from it. It is one without a second or one without a two. And this is the exact connotation of the Hebrew word used for God's oneness. In the Old Testament, I am one without a second, I am one without a possibility of you adding to me or subtracting from me, I am one lone.
Also what God wanted from human beings was very clear from the Old Testament. He wanted their worship, he wanted to be worshipped. He wanted them to give them the Society of worship that he deserved as their Creator. Also what he wanted from human beings was obedience. He wanted to be obeyed. God wanted obedience, what he said to do, you did it. And if you did it, you would be rewarded, if not, you would be punished. And he wanted the things that he said to stay away from, for you to stay away from them. And if you did it, you'd be punished, if you did that, which he told you not to do. And also what was clear was, how do you become right with God? In the Old Testament,
how you become right with God is that when you make a mistake, and you break God's law, or you sin against God, you turn back to that God and you repent to him, you ask for his forgiveness. And then there was some rituals that God wanted, he wanted the sacrifice and the burnt offerings, etc, as a showing of your obedience to Him as a symbol of your obedience to Him, and that he himself would forgive you. This was clear from the Old Testament.
Now, there's a very beautiful statement I find in Molokai, which is the last book of the Old Testament, about God's nature.
And it is a statement that quotes in the King James, I change not, therefore the sons of Jacob, are not consumed. Basically, what God says, I do not change, I do not change. This is the reason I have not destroyed the sons of Jacob, meaning the children of Israel. So God is saying, I don't change how I am is how I am. And that I have made a covenant with you, the children of Israel, and I don't break it. And this is something very beautiful for me as a Muslim, because now that I see in in the book, that we have the Quran, which is the fulfillment of all of these books, God reminds the children of Israel about that covenant saying that I don't change. And I have a covenant that I have
made with you, children of Israel, and remind yourself about that. And God still opposes into the covenant, he reminds the children of Israel that I uphold, in my in I have, I have upheld my end, even to this day, God still upholds his into the covenant, he says, If you come back and fulfill your end of it, I am still here fulfilling my end of it. It's very beautiful, God does not change.
So I go to the New Testament now. And this is where a crux of the information comes in that we just don't have the time to go over.
But a couple of things I have to point out. Number one, was the way I normally read the New Testament was how people normally read a book from the first chapter to the end. And this guy would go to Matthew one and read it to the end mark one reads in Luke one, read it to the end, john one read it to the end. When you read it like this, you get the connotation that these four books are the stories about the same person, the same story told by four different people from four different perspectives. But now there is a way that textual critics is the science of reading. That is there is a historical critical analysis of witnesses. It is it is the the science of comparing witnesses.
Like for instance, if you have Matthew, Mark, Luke and john, there's they're supposedly witnessing the same story. So the way you verify those witnesses is you weigh them one against another. And this is the way it's done in a court of law, you have a number of witnesses, telling stories from different perspectives, you weigh their stories against each other to see if there are any contradictions, if there are any change, if you know, to verify their statements. That's one of the ways you do it. When you do this, from the New Testament, Matthew, Mark, Luke and john, the way you do it is you go and you find the first story of Matthew, which is what it is the story of Jesus's
birth and his interest in to Jerusalem. You go find that same story in Mark, you go find that same story in Luke and that same story in john, you're not going to find every story synonymously in all four books, but you find it this way. And then you go to the next story and you read across, you go to the next story you read across you find it.
When you do that alone, by itself. What you come to realize is that it is not the same story told by four different people from different perspectives. It is four different stories.
is four completely different stories told by four completely different people and they look at the life of Jesus and four completely in uniquely different ways. And they have disagreements even amongst each other about who Jesus was, what he meant to them. When we look at the author of Luke, whoever wrote Luke also wrote x. Jesus crucifixion to the author of Luke and Acts did not mean salvation. It meant that God was warning the children of Israel to repent to him and come back and obtain his salvation. So we see different things like this. And also these stories contradict each other at certain places contradict each other to the point of irreconcilability in many places. I
think Bart Ehrman, who is one of my teachers in textual criticism, has done the best job of putting those things together into beautiful books called misquoting Jesus. And Jesus interrupted, where he has laid these things out verse by verse by page by page by page.
But that was first and foremost is that I realized, that's what we have now of the New Testament, documented historically, if you want to give it the critical analysis it deserves is hearsay. at best. It is hearsay and best. Because even the author of Luke says I'm only writing those things which are seeming to me, which sounds good to me. And we know from studying these documents that Mark was the oldest one of all four of them. And Mark was copying from a document called the cue documents, which does not exist anymore, but is referenced by the early church fathers such as Joe Theseus and erroneous etc. They refer to this cue document. And Mark was deriving his information
from this cue document as the church father Josephus teaches this. And then Matthew and Luke copied in a lot of places off of Mark, the book that was being read by Mark john is completely different. And we don't know exactly where he got his information from. But we see that these things were derived later on. And they are sometimes second person narratives third person narratives, not eyewitness accounts.
So the very best they are hearsay, they are witness accounts from what someone may have heard someone else may have said. But nonetheless, what I wanted to know was out of what we have, and even worse than that, reading it in the English language, you have lost everything in translation, because you're reading an English language that is translated from the existing Greek documents that we have that are scattered themselves. And Greek being a language that Jesus Christ peace be upon him himself did not speak. He spoke we know and it has been verified through through documentation that Jesus and the people where he came from Galilee at the time he lived, they spoke a language
called Aramaic. And Aramaic is a language that is almost non existent in the world today, except in a small village in Syria, was were the only place where they speak pure Aramaic anymore. And it is a language that is one of the most difficult in the world to translate into any other language, especially once you've translated it to languages over, then that comes up to the interpretation of the translator, what it meant. So what we have is an interpretation of a translator, from Aramaic to Greek, who then was interpreted what he meant over into English. So we have lost in translation already.
But out of all of this, what I wanted to know was what did Jesus say? What did he do? How did he live? How did he act? Where did he come and so on and so forth? Because I wanted to verify what I believed with what Jesus Himself said.
Without being able to go verse by verse detail by detail, I have a few videos over that do that the true gospel of Jesus Christ and so on and so forth.
I'm going to give you the summary.
And I wish I had time to go verse by verse for you. There are some videos where I go verse by verse, but I that would take me another hour at least.
To summarize, out of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and john, what we get out of putting it all together and meshing it all around and seeing what is the summary.
Jesus was sent to the children of Israel, he was sent to the children of Israel, out of his out of his own testimony, I was not sent but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. And he was sent to a people whom he referred to as a murderous and adulterous nation. He was very upset with them because they had fallen far away from what God had wanted from them.
And he was coming to a people in the in Jerusalem. Home the Jews at that time were under subjugation themselves. They were living under the Roman law, they were under the authority of the of Rome of season. But they were allowed under that law to regulate their own affairs, you know, they were allowed to deal with their own issues or whatever, you just pay the taxes to Caesar you just accept his authority, and you're free to do what you'd want to do. The children of Israel have been very good at doing this living under a society but yet enacting their own way of life. They're doing that right here in Britain. They're very good at that. But
Jesus came to bring them back to the right way of life in front of God, a righteous way of life in the eyes of God. And he also came to realize
For them, some of the law that God had revealed to them even because the law had been made very strict for them because of some of their disobedience and Jesus said He came as the Messiah. He himself was the Messiah, he claimed messiahship as Messiah, Messiah, meaning the anointed one, the one what the literal translation is wiped over, the one wiped over by God or anointed by God. He said, I am the Messiah come to bring you the kingdom of God, the kingdom of God is at hand. He said this on a number of few occasions, The kingdom of God is at hand, john the baptist said, this hero, Israel, the kingdom of God is at hand. Now,
he also was sent to a people whom the ruling class amongst the children of Israel were a group called the Pharisees and the Sadducees. They were the holders of the law. They were the scholars of the nation, they were the ones who held the law in their hands. But unfortunately, these people whom Jesus referred to himself as hypocrites, had used the law of God, to Lord themselves over the people for quite a long time. They had kept the people in ignorance, they themselves held the law and in some places made the law of themselves and in some places changed the law. But since they were the exclusive holders of it, they lowered it over the people with this. And they used it to enrich
themselves physically, meaning that they got rich off the backs of the people, they also used it Lord over them, the people as far as prestige and honor, the only thing that people needed to do was to obey this class, you know, depend on them, give them their money, take care of them, and they would then be the go between between the people in God, we will go for God in front of God for you, you just take care of all the things that we are asking you to do. And don't worry about anything else. So kept them in that ignorance, and it was lording over them. And Jesus peace be upon him came and challenged them directly. Even at a young age, we see Jesus in the synagogue, challenging the
scribes and the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and debating with him, so on and so forth. And he also came to put things back in order, which means that he was going to come drop the people of the law means scribes and the Pharisees and Sadducees, back down to the level of normal people and raise people, normal people back up to an equal footing equal footing in God's hands.
And when he was challenged about changing the law, he said, I haven't come to change any of the law, just to fulfill it, just to complete it. And that fulfillment will not happen, I will not, I will not give up and nothing will change from the law, not a period no comma will change from the law until all is fulfilled through me.
This was Jesus biggest crime, believe it or not, was his challenge to those Pharisees and Sadducees. This was the beginning of the end for Jesus,
because he's claiming to be the Messiah. But unfortunately, the ruling leader of the children of Israel only saw the Messiah, as someone who would come and sit on the throne of David, and rule over the world with the law of Moses, that he would subjugate the entire world on the law of Moses, and he would create a heaven here on Earth, everything would be perfect a paradise here, ruling under the law of Moses, but Jesus tried to advise them that look, I have, I have not been sent with the kingdom of this world, I have been sent to bring you into the kingdom of God, meaning the kingdom of the Hereafter, meaning I have been sent to bring you to heaven. This is what God wants for you obey
Him in this life, and you get eternal paradise in the next life. That's why he said, The kingdom of God is at hand, he did not come as a king of this world. He said, My kingdom is not of this world. I don't care about anything here.
But he was not doing this. In the beginning, Jesus was in a bad state anyway, because their Messiah, they thought would be someone of prestige and honor of great lineage of, of high lineage. And Jesus peace be upon him himself had no lineage. He had no father. So he had no lineage whatsoever. He was a poor Carpenter from a city of Galilee, which is a very poor fisherman city, a fishing port on the Red Sea. So he was nobody. And he said, This guy who was nobody, we don't know. And we don't know where he's from. He's all of a sudden now coming and telling us that he is the Messiah working these miracles, they saw the miracles with their own eyes.
But since he was not giving them what they want, and he was challenging them directly, this is where he became a public enemy. to them. I threat a nuisance, because I don't care who you are, I don't care how beautiful your message is, if what you are bringing is at a direct challenge to the status quo that has been set up by the elite to Lord themselves and to enrich themselves off the back of humanity. If what you are bringing brings a direct challenge to that system and seeks to destroy that system and set up a system of equality and justice amongst people. You will become a Public Enemy I don't care who you are, because it is not you that they are really worried about. It is not
your message that they're really worried about. It is the implement implications.
of the message, it is the implications of the message, that that message directly threatens their system. That's all that really matters. That's all that matters, doesn't matter how beautiful the system may be, and this is a lesson for us, is that it is not the system of Islam that humanity is worried about, in most cases, because they're kept ignorant of that. It is not the Justice and the equality in the beauty of the system that Islam brings. It is the implications that it brings an end to the system that is set up to Lord over human beings and to do injustice to human beings, and to enrich themselves, meaning the elite of the world off the backs of other people, that Islam comes to
put in into that system. That is the real crime that has been committed on our behalf. And we are suffering the penalties for that simply, and that is the truth.
Jesus put himself in this position and he said he has to go, he has to go, Jesus has to go. Now.
He was never brought up on charges of calling himself God. This is one thing we have to realize he was never brought up on charges of calling himself God. This was one trick that was tried to put against them at certain occasions. But the real crime that they wanted Jesus to commit was to put himself at direct odds with the ruling of the day, which was Caesar himself. We see this on a couple of occasions when they come to Jesus and they asked him about paying taxes. They said, should we give our taxes to Caesar? It's a trick question. Because of Jesus says, No, don't give taxes to Caesar. That isn't into Jesus life altogether. Because Caesar would have killed himself. No one
challenged Caesar, trust me, you did not challenge Roman authority. Jesus tricked them back and said, Don't give to God what belongs to God gift to Caesar what belongs to Caesar.
at another point in time, they asked Jesus and tried to trick him about the law. They asked him what is the greatest law? a scribe came them and said, Oh, Jesus, you're a good teacher. What is the greatest law? He said, I cannot tell you the greatest law without telling you the first law. He said, let me tell you the first law is to Hear O Israel, the Lord your God is one. This is the first law here, O Israel, the Lord your God is one. And that you should love that God with all of your heart with all of your mind with all of your strength. And then you should love your neighbor, as you love yourself. Everything else hangs on these two, or the law and the prophets hangs on these
two, depending on which gospel you read.
at another point in place, Jesus was asked about how to go to heaven. And I'm just giving you a few samples because I can't get to all of them. He was asked about going to heaven from a rich man named Lazarus. So the famous story
a rich man named Lazarus came to Jesus and asked him how do I inherit eternal life? Or how do I go to heaven?
Jesus replied, and said obey the law of God. He said, obey the commandments, obey God's law, which is the exact same that we see from God Himself. In the Old Testament, the man said, I've done that. Meaning that he implied that he was perfect in front of the law. Jesus said, Oh, really, if you've done that, then what you need to do is you need to go sell everything you own, you need to pick up your burden, which is translated as cross, which is not the correct translation, you need to pick up your burden. And you need to follow me, meaning what you need to do is you need to go sell everything you have used that money, pick it up, and come help me because I could use another
disciple. If you're that good, then I need some help. The man realized he was not perfect in front of the law. So he left weeping. But Jesus did not stop the man and say, Hold on, wait a minute. The law is only for a time pretty soon I'm going to sacrifice myself for the sins of humanity, that blood is going to overcome the law remove you from the law, you accept that and you go to heaven. He didn't stop them, and he left them. And in that condition,
which we see the same statement out of Jesus and john 17, and john 17, three, Jesus said, that this is life eternal. This is the way to heaven is to know the one true God. He said that this is life eternal, that they knew that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent, and Jesus peace be upon them even said in another place, I do know works of my own. I do them through Him who has sent me letting people know that I don't do these works and these miracles of my own a power of my own accord. I do them through Him who sent me. We see in another place when Jesus was asked
about the Day of Judgment, which every prophet has been asked, these are things that I'm telling you led me to change my thought of Jesus being God of him being the direct Son of God or divine or anything, a man as Jesus, when is the day of judgment? Oh, good Master, tell us when is the hour. Jesus said that made no no man of that day no with no man, not even the son meaning himself. Only the Father, Who is in heaven knows of that day. So I'm looking and saying to myself, okay, God, is God. He knows everything. Jesus is admitting that he knows not the Day of Judgment. Therefore God does not know everything and not know everything at the same time. I don't care how you try to
explain it. To me. This is very simple. God knows everything.
Someone who does not know everything is not God. These are not the same person that natures are different and contradictory.
And then I'm told, okay,
because I'm talking to Benjamin with this, and he's taken me, I'm talking to some of my young life pastors showing them these things. They said, Yes, but Jesus said, who have seen me have seen the Father. He is God. If you've seen me, you've seen the Father. I said, there's a problem with this. They said, what I said, there's two problems with this. The first one is that if you take this as a clear, explicit statement, then Jesus contradicts himself. because later on in john, Jesus says, no man has seen God at any time. No man has seen God at any time, nor Have you ever heard his voice. So we have a problem. Either you saw God or you didn't see God. I said, and then the second problem is
that the reading, when you look at the documents of this verse, who have seen me have seen the Father, there are varied, meaning that there are contradictions amongst the documents. And actually, the greater reading, the more verified, and the more authentic reading is that Jesus said, Whoever has seen me has known the Father. If you've seen me, you've known God. This is also one of the documents reading why they chose the one that said, if you've known, you've seen me, you've seen God. That's that that you have to ask the people who chose what we read today, going back about 1000 years to the Council of Nicea, but I'm seeing these problems. And what I come to the end is that the
reason of crucifixion and then I'm going to be done, I'm gonna get to the end, because we're running out of time.
So why did Jesus need to be crucified?
Very simply, Jesus needed to be crucified.
Because the children of Israel had to get rid of him.
And they not only needed to get rid of him, they needed to discredit who he was. They needed to discredit what he was saying, because his message was so clear, and he was very concise, and his arguments were pure. So we have to discredit him somehow.
crucifixion was a very sneaky, but amazing way to do that. And Paul, lets the cat out of the bag. Unfortunately, in Galatians, when Paul says to the church, angulation, that Christ was cursed on behalf of the law, to remove us from the curse of the law, for it is written, everything that hangs on a tree is cursed, quoting Deuteronomy. So I went back and I looked at that law and Deuteronomy about crucifixion. And I asked some of the Jewish leaders in my my town, one of the one of the Hasidic Jewish leaders, which is the, you know, kind of the most orthodox. What does this mean? He said, anyone who is crucified as a criminal under God's law, in the law of Moses, they are cursed
individual, cursed in this life, and whatever is in the next life is not for them. They are cursed people.
It clicked in my head, that this is why he needed to be crucified. They wanted to crucify him because they understood this guy is claiming to be the Messiah, he's claiming to be the perfection of God's law. He is claiming to be the fulfillment of God's law, if we can crucify him as a criminal, under that very same law that he's saying he's coming to fulfill and perfect, that he looks like the biggest fool on the planet, no one will believe in him. This is why Paul says that the crucifixion is the stumbling block of the Jews. It is the stumbling block for them because they cannot believe in a crucified Messiah. It is very tough for them to believe in a Messiah that was
But this is what they decided to do if we can crucify him. He's done. So they began to accuse him, not of being God. Because what if would Caesar have cared if Jesus was calling himself God? How many gods did the Romans have at that time? hundreds, hundreds and hundreds. If Jesus wanted to be a God, they would have cared less, if he could have proved that they might have even injured him in the gotchu.
And probably made a holiday to get drunk off of after. This is just the way the Romans worked at that time. But what they began to accuse him of was calling himself the King of the Jews, the King of the Jews, at challenging the throne of Caesar. And this was actually if we read the crucifixion story, this is what they nailed above the cross here life, the King of the Jews. This is what he was charged with. And this is what he was brought up for. And even Pontius when he interviewed Jesus said, I don't see any fault in the man, he let him go. He said, I don't there's nothing wrong with a man.
But when Jesus was notified, that they're gonna crucify you.
When that information was given to him, we have to look at his reaction.
If his life was to come on this earth and live for 33 years, and to live perfectly and die as a perfect sin, sacrifice for humanity, then when crucifixion was presented to him, this should have been a joyous occasion. I mean, this should have been a joyous occasion. Okay, sure. Let's go meet me, you know, my house, 730, sundown, whatever have you. I'll be there. I'm ready to go. But this is not the attitude we see from the Christ of the Gospels. We see a man Jesus, who when he was told about crucifixion, he gathered his disciples and He went to get feminie and if any of you have ever been to alkaloids, Jerusalem, you will know that gets him and he is outside the old city boundaries.
It is outside the city.
Jesus took his disciples left the city went to get some money, put his disciples at the gate and told them what? Watch, guard the gate, fly, so that no one could come and get him. And we know they were armed. Because Peter had a sword. We see that from the Gospels, Peter had a sword, they were armed. And Jesus went down a road and he fell on his face. And he started to pray. And he prayed so hard that his sweat became as if it were drops of blood, as it's told to us. So first of all, Jesus Himself is showing his need. He's in need. I know God does not need anything. Jesus is in need. What is he in need? of? What is he asking for? so seriously, that is sweat because as if it would drop
some blood, he says, Father, if it be let this cup pass from me, let this cup pass from me, meaning Do not let them crucify me. Let this crucifixion pass for me.
But nevertheless, whatever is your will, that I will do.
And I'm thinking to myself, hold on a second, no, this is the wrong question to be asking. You're putting humanity at risk with this question. Because if you don't sacrifice Paul himself says, without Christ crucified, our faith is in vain. without Christ crucified, our faith is in vain. Jesus, if you get this question answered, if this is answered, we're done. So why ask the question.
The reason is because Jesus understood the implications of crucifixion, that if they crucify me, they'll never believe in me, they will never believe in me, whatsoever. Therefore, he did not want to be crucified. We see this from his attitude.
So I also realized that crucifixion could not lead one onto justification, even though if you believe Okay, the law can take you to justification okay? Well, crucifixion can either because is equal, there's a very clear commandment of God, which somebody say, Okay, this was the law too. So I was taken out. But God does not change. He himself says, I do not change. In Ezekiel, God teaches that the soul that sins dies, the soul that sins dies.
And then beyond that, no one can bear the burdens of another. The father cannot bear the burdens of the Son, nor can the son bear the burdens of the Father, to each person who works righteousness, that righteousness will be for them, and each person who does wickedness, that wickedness will be upon them.
So we have contradictory theologies here, either is what God teaches, or it's what I'm being taught. And I'm realizing now that this actual doctrine of crucifixion really comes out of the mouth of Paul himself through the 13 letters that he writes that in enacted into the New Testament, because we do not see this theology come out of the mouth of Jesus Christ, his sin, crucifixion, we don't see it. Clearly. There is no explicit statement to this fact. And I and I, and I'm willing to hear them, and I have been wanting to hear them for the past 13 years, there is no explicit statement of Jesus peace be upon him, saying that he is God without there either being a contradictory statement, or
this being an implicit statement that really means something else if you put it into the context. So I realized that I have like a problem now with theology because the book is not showing me other than if you read Paul's testimony, which Paul is contradicting Jesus very much. When Jesus said, Whosoever obeys the law and follows it and teaches people to obey the law, he will be the greatest person in the kingdom of heaven. But whosoever disobeyed the law and teaches people to break the law, will be the least person that kingdom of heaven. We see this in the book of Luke from Jesus himself. And Paul teaches that the law is cursed, and it needs to be removed by the curse of Jesus
Christ on the cross in order to remove us from our sins. So he contradicts Jesus peace be upon his own teaching.
And according to my theology, that Christ had to be a sinless sacrifice. The unblemished lamb, in order to remove the sins of the world itself has a problem, because the theology teaches that Jesus peace be upon him on the cross took on the sins of humanity. This is why he cried out.
lemon law Mr. Baca thenI, which is the only Aramaic that's left in the New Testament? My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? That is because he was taking on the sins of the world. And he died with the entirety of the sins of the world on him so that we could be ransom for them. Well, this is not an unblemished sacrifice. This is probably the most sinful sacrifice has ever been committed if he took on all the sins of humanity. So it's just problem answering it for me. And the book is not teaching it and there's contradictory theologies, there's things going on this not making sense. So I go to Benjamin again, I tell him, Look, I got a problem. Because I made it and I made it all the
way to the end to Revelation. And I saw Paul's teachings were quite clear, but they were very different than the teachings of Jesus himself. So he took me to his textual critic professor.
And his textual critic professor told me
that the book you have in your hands, as you are coming to learn now is a book written by the hands of men and women. And it has been passed down through the ages by the hands of men and women. And the originals of that book had been lost. We don't we don't have a way to reach back to that point. And what we have left is scattered, and it is a
variant, to say the least, he said, but what you have is the best
attempt at the scholars to put back an original thought of what the author's may have written down when they pin these books. He said, but it does have some human flaws being that it was written by human beings. But those who believe in it, believe in it by faith in it is that faith which leads them under justification, because it is faith that leads one to salvation according to Paul, not anything else. Not works. But Paul contradicts himself on that as well. Because he says that your that faith without works is dead, having nothing meaning you must have worked with your faith. But then a later he says that your your your works are filthy rags in front of God, they mean nothing,
so I don't know, which he meant. But he said, what you have is what you have, and you believe in it by faith, and is that faith that leads you to justification.
I said, Look here, God is perfect. Therefore everything emanating from him should be perfect. He is perfect. Without a doubt. Therefore his law should be perfect. God's not going to send a flawed law to human beings. It shouldn't be perfect. God's books should be perfect. God's prophets should be perfect. God's religion, his way of life, everything emanating from the one perfect true, God should be perfect. You're telling me this book is not perfect. Therefore I cannot believe in in theology based on it cannot be perfect. A theology based on a flawed book is flawed. So I left Christianity at this point in my life, and I wanted to search for God's truth. So I studied other religions. I
studied Hinduism, Buddhism,
Taoism, Confucianism, Wiccan Bushido, I mean, everything I could get my hands on, that had anything to do about anything, I read it. But what I wanted was proof. You understand? I didn't want to hear what you had to say anymore. You needed to be able to show it to me, you need to be able to put tangibility in my hands, because my grandfather taught me something as a young man that I've always lived according to add up into this day. He said, The truth always comes with proof. The truth is unique that it always comes with proof. Therefore, if someone says they have the truth, ask them for some proof. And if they don't have proof, then leave that truth alone.
So I wanted proof. So I read some of the proofs, and I looked at the proofs that other religions handed forward and without being able to go into the detail, the proves had some had the same flaws, as I found within the Bible, things that were good, and they made sense, but things that the only way you could believe in them was you had to turn off that logic and that, that, that that intelligence, that God gave you that rationality that God gave, you have to turn it off. And just to believe in light of evidence in light of what's in front of you, you just have to believe, and I was not going down that road again. I read a book about Islam. And it said that Muslims were Arabs, who
worship the moon God that lived in a box in the desert in Saudi Arabia, and that they had many wives whom they beat as a hobby, and that the greatest thing a Muslim could do was to kill a non Muslim, and they will get virgins when they went to heaven. You know, so I wasn't even caring about any proof they had, you know, if that was their religion, then then you know, I read I read, I wrote Islam off right away. I said, I knew Muslims were crazy, but I didn't know they were that crazy.
And at 17 years old, I gave up my search for God. And I began to search for religion in the streets.
And I decided to, you know, to live my own life. And at 17 years old, for a man who was angry and upset with God, and all of my friends were partying and, you know, to pocket just been shot and Biggie just been killed. The hip hop scene in America was very flourishing. So I got very much involved in the hip hop lifestyle. You know, I started going back and forth to New York, because my father was working in New York, got very much involved in that whole kind of underground kind of world. And it's not the best world trust me, believe me, without a shadow of a doubt. I was getting into a lot of fights. I had an anger issue. On top of that, I had just gotten a black belt in G
kundo, which was the first martial art that took so I thought I was Bruce Lee reincarnated. And I was I was, I was willing to give you my proof. You know, I was telling the truth, I was willing to prove it. And that gets you in a lot of trouble. I got into fights in school, got kicked out of school,
got arrested for beating up a young man at a payphone because he wouldn't get off of it quickly enough. So I made him get off of it. And his father happened to be a criminal court judge.
So just to put it this way, I was going down a very bad road very quickly. And there were two things that change that so we don't run out of time. The first one was a car accident that I got into, that I should not have lived from my friend and I were leaving a party intoxicated, and I fell asleep in the passenger seat. And when he was on the highway, he decided to fall asleep with me. And that doesn't work when you're driving. So we flipped the car and we smashed it up totally, totally totaled the car. We should not have left from the wreck. The state trooper told us that God had a purpose for our life. Because if not, we will be dead. I laughed at him. I said, God's purpose me
and God have a problem.
But nonetheless, I paid that attention. A month later, I went to New York, because I wanted to show my friend New York City and I went to an ATM machine. And someone tried to rob me when I was leaving the ATM machine. He put a gun in my face. And he didn't say anything to me. He just pulled the trigger on the gun. His his intention was to blow this you know young white kids
head off, take the money and run. The gun didn't go off. I ended up getting into a tussle with it with a guy. And I ended up getting the gun away from him. And I ended up you know, getting away the gun fly because I just been rushed him and smashed him through a glass door, the gun went flying, he went flying, and I jumped up and I ran off.
It was after these two incidences, and I told my grandmother about the gun incident where she knew about the car incident, which she screamed at me for the first time ever in her life and almost hit me with a frying pan.
And she kicked me out of her home and told me that I don't let idiots live in my house and you right now living up to you know, be a real idiot. So she kicked me out and told me I need to fix my life. So I decided that I wanted to be a better person. And I realized how tough it is for our youth, you know, that have been involved in the street lifestyle, and they've kind of gotten, you know, in touch to this underground, kind of proper gangster thug lifestyle. I understand how hard it is to get out. It's not easy. Trust me when you put roots into that and your friends are and all that. And this is all you've wound yourself around. It's not really just a sort of thing where you just pick
up and leave it you know, it's not that simple. It's a little more complicated than that.
But I was trying to be a better person. And then just so happened I met a Muslim. And this is what we come to the end.
I met a Muslim whom I've known for a couple of years.
I never knew that he was a Muslim, because he was a an African American guy. His name was Musa, but we called him blunt. And I didn't know that he was a Muslim, because number one, he was African American. And number two, the he was known. And he was the local marijuana salesman in my town. He sold drugs for a living. This was the weed guy. So I didn't know Muslims could be you know, African American, and with all of this moon God worship and beating their wives and killing them. I didn't know they could sell drugs.
But I was at his house one day, and the subject of religion came up. And he came out and he taught he was from New York, by the way. He had this heavy New York accent. He was like, yo, son, you ever heard about Islam? And I was like, Yes. And I heard all about Islam. I was like, there's some crazy, you know, what's, you know, I mean, without putting the explicit in, there are some crazy people. He was like, What are you talking about? I'm a Muslim. I was like,
I was like, Man, you need to give this drug business and be a comedian.
I said, you can't be a Muslim. You know, at first, I was like, you know, look at Farah Khan over here. You know, I mean, because I thought he was in the Nation of Islam. You know, I was like, you know, Nation of Islam. That's not what I'm talking about. He's like, No, no, no, I'm not in the nation. He's like, I'm a real Muslim, Sunni Muslim. And I remember Sunni Muslim from the book, because it said Sunnis and Shias were two groups of Muslims, and they also killed each other.
So I said, you can't be no Muslim because they're, you're black. He's like, I know, I'm black. This doesn't wash off. You know, I mean, it's not watercolors.
I said, All Muslims are atoms. He said, Wait a minute, the smallest percentage of one of the smallest percentage of Muslims are atoms. I said, No, no, that's not what the book said. He said, What book I told him the book, he was ready to hit me.
He was like that book is written by you know, someone who hates Islam. Everything in there is opposite of Islam, so on and so forth. He cussed me out. But so I was like, okay, you tell me about Islam. He said, I can I send them What good are you? He said, I said, Why? He said, because I'm not a good Muslim. He said, I barely pray like I'm supposed to, I barely do what I'm supposed to do. He said, You see what I do for a living? Come on.
I said, Well, then how am I going to know he said, I'm going to take you on Friday to the mosque for Juma. I was like, Okay, I understand a little bit of New York lingo. But Friday was really the only thing I can decipher from that sentence. I said mosque and Juma you lost me. He was like, No, a mosque is like a worship center for Muslims. And Juma is like Sunday service because there's no chairs. So I said, Okay.
Where's the mosque? Because I know there's not one in Greenville. He said, No, no, no, there's one in Greenwood Hampton Boulevard. I said, Dude, I live in West Hampton Boulevard. Let me let me tell you there's no mosque. I've lived in this city my whole life. There's no masks on when Hampton Boulevard. He said yes. It's on the corner of the road.
I was like, okay, son, let me tell you something. I live on the road. The only thing on the road is there's a church on one end of the church on the other end. That's it. One of them is the one that I go to. And the other one trains people how to be missionaries. There's no mosque, let me guarantee you. He said no, no, you know, the missionary church. I said, Yeah. He said, you know, that little brick building in the same parking lot with a gold thing on top of me. Yeah, the gym. He's like, no, that's the mosque.
So I was shocked. Because I said, I never knew that there was a terrorist factory at the end of my road. You know, I didn't I didn't know that. I didn't know they made bombs at the end of my room.
Because I used to go to that, that church to do take some classes on becoming a missionary. So I was like, you know, I could have been gotten at any time. But anyway, he told me to meet him there at 120. So I said, Okay, I went at one o'clock. I'm not a fool. I'm not running into a mosque. You know, I mean, I got some sense. So I sat on the stairs of the church, and I watched who went into the building.
And I can only see the men's entrance mind you. So who do I see going this building? out of guy after Adam guy after guy after Adam guy. It may have been some Pakistanis and anybody but at that time you all at the same time.
In the south, there's two kinds of people. There's Americans and there's everybody else. And that was and they were everybody else. They were not American. So I'm like, okay, the book is right. So far all Muslims are items that I've seen. And then Moses not showing up, right? So I'm paging him to see why he's not coming and he never answers me. Because he got raided by the Drug Enforcement Agency that morning, he went to jail for drug trafficking.
So he's not coming, I'm not going to see him. Then this car pulls up in front of me and this little guy gets out with a big beard and a dress on and he asked me Can you help me? He's like, Can I help you very soft spoken. So can I help you? I said yeah. Moosa. At first I called him blunt. I was like blunt, I was like, made a pride on no blind. Moosa invited me to watch your Juma thing.
He was like, yeah, we know Moosa. He just doesn't come that often.
He was like, but he was very excited. He's like, please come in, you know, we're so happy. And you know, we're so happy to have you.
You know, come, you know, he's,
and I was a little bit suspicious that he was too excited, first and foremost. And then he was like, you know, he was Egyptian, of course, by the way, had to be Adam. And his name was Mohammed, of course had to be every Muslim was named Muhammad, I bet.
So he said, Come in, we'll take care of you. So I went in, because I said, I didn't see anything but old men going to the building. And I can handle three old men on myself, you know, I mean, so they put me at the back and gave me a chair. And I'm sitting at the back in front of this big group of Adam, guys. And there's a curtain going from wall to wall. And I realized that there's some women behind the curtain. I'm like, Where did the woman come from? And why are they behind the curtain? I said, Maybe it's because all the bruises you know,
it's illegal to beat your wife and American, you know.
And then I thought to myself, you know what, I've seen Lawrence in Arabia, the movie Lawrence of Arabia, they had this little tent in the desert with a bunch of women. Yeah. And it's called the hatom. Where they go and they pick women like flowers and the men use the women and do whatever they want to and they drop them back off. So I said, My God is that um, you know, if I keep these women locked up 24 seven, I was like, This is too crazy. You know, they had not only is there a terrorist bomb making factory in my role, but they have a hat on with a bunch of women as well.
So I'm sitting there thinking to myself, you know that I really don't belong here. You know, you need to leave. And I said, second of all, why is Moosa not here? is a problem. What would why would Moosa tell me to come? And then he not show up. And then all of a sudden, I said to myself, you know what? Moses set you up, because he's always talking about doing big business deals with Arabs in New York, because they, they sell drugs in New York Arabs, by the way, and they do money laundering. So he's always talking about going into it and getting that out of money.
So I said, My God, this guy Musa sold me to these Arabs. And they're going to do their little Jihad on me after June when they're going to get the emergence.
I said, You're the sacrificial lamb here today. So I got up to leave. I'm like, Look, I'm no punk. You know, I mean, I'm not going out like that. I live right here on this road. You know, so I get up to leave, and everybody gets quiet. So I'm like, Oh, my God, you know, I mean, so I sat down, you know, wondering what to do next. And I realized the reason they were quiet because a man got up on some steps, because the same guy who invited me in,
and I said to myself, let me see what this guy has to say, you know, I'll leave while he's talking. Because I just didn't, you know, he was so soft spoken. I just really didn't see this guy, you know, he's not gonna get up here and start telling me to kill me. You know? I mean, isn't that how it works? It has to be something else. So he gets up and he starts his sermon. In Hungary learner matter who when asked, you know, when a stock photo, I'm like, Oh, my dear God.
He's telling them to kill me.
Because he's screaming, now. He's pounding on the thing. And he's pointed in my direction.
The translation in my head is let's kill this American and get our versions. The only thing that's missing is for the the women to start going,
then the curtain is going to come back, the swords are coming out, you know, they're gonna have a basket of heads. You know, I mean, it's over mine. It's over. It's over. It's over. So I start freaking out. I'm about to get up and start hitting these old atom guys and fight my way out of here. I'm no punk. There's no windows. So I'm realizing now that there's a real problem because I'm wondering why there's no windows in the place. The windows are like high up on the ceiling. I'm like, Okay, I'm not gonna mall a mountain. I'm going. So before I got up to knock out some of these older guys, which I'm so glad that you know, I didn't go that far. He stopped screaming in Arabic.
And he said, I translate.
So he translate what he said in English. He said, I translate. All praise belongs to the one true God of all that exists. We praise Him and we praise Him alone. We seek, we worship Him, and we worship Him alone, we seek His forgiveness and his forgiveness alone and his assistance, and we seek refuge with him, and him alone from the evil that lies within our own souls and our sinful actions. And whomsoever God guides to the truth cannot be misguided from it, and whomsoever God leads astray from the truth cannot be guided back to it except by him. And I bear witness that nothing has the right to be given worship, except the one true God of all that exists. And I bear witness that
Muhammad is indeed the Messenger of God. And then he translated some verses which some of our Muslims may know that Oh, you who believe fear God as He should be feared and do not die unless you
are submitting to His will, and all mankind for your guardian Lord who created you from one soul. And that's all he created. It's made Adam and Eve. And from those to the rest of creation came in fear God from whom you demand your mutual rights for goddess and ever watch her over everything that you do. And oh, you believe fear God as He should be feared, and always speak the truth, for by doing so God will guide you to righteous deeds, and he will forgive your sins. So whoever obeys God in his last messenger has already achieved the greatest achievement in life.
I was shocked. I said, the translation doesn't fit, you know, all the screaming in the Arabic. And I was shocked because it was so beautiful what he said even in the English language, it caught my attention. So I said, Let me hear what this guy has to say. If I have to fight with him later, I'll just fight with him later. I really was wanted to hear what the guy said now. And what he said that day was about the forgiveness of God. He said, the forgiveness of God is open to anyone at any time at any place without discretion, and that no matter what you do,
no matter how great your sins are, you can be forgiven except on three occasions. The first occasion that God doesn't forgive is if you worship something other than Him, while you know it, knowingly worship something other than God. I'm like Solomon did that one if God forgave him,
he said, The second way was that if death has reached your throat, or the soul has reached your throat, meaning that death has come to you, God doesn't forgive up to that point if you don't ask for forgiveness. And the third way was that if the sun rose from the west, which I didn't understand that the day of judgment has approached, he said, other than that, God forgives everything. And he quoted a very beautiful statement from the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him. It's a long story which I have to cut short. He said that, no matter how great amount of sins, the human being can do, no matter if they're as great as the world, and everything that it contains inside of it, that as
long as they have not associated a partner with God, knowingly, and they have worshipped Him alone, that when they meet God, even if their sins are so great that they would fill up the earth, that God would meet them with a forgiveness equal, and with the like, of that which they have sinned. And it was, I was amazed. It was beautiful, beautiful.
And this is what I learned from God, that God forgives that God is ever forgiving. He is the one who wants you to repent to him. And he said that the reason that God loves his creation human so much, is because of their repentance, not because of the sin because he hates the sin. He said, But when human beings sin against God, then they turn to him and repent. They show their greatness of the need for God. They really show god how much they need him, as quoted by Eunice and he quoted the door of Jonah, the prayer of Jonah when he was in the belly of the whale, oh, my God, I have wronged myself. And if you do not forgive me, I will surely be a loser. In this life in the next he said it
were not for that, that prayer that God would have left him in the belly of the fish. And so they have judgment. So when we returned to God, He loves us. And is that repentance, which makes us so great. I was shocked. I said, You know what, you have written these people off way too easy. You need to go and ask him for proof of what he's saying after this. So after the prayer, which I knew the prayer was the prayer of the prophets. Yeah. And I knew that when I saw Muslims bow and crushed him on the floor, I knew that Moses prayed like this. I knew that Abraham prayed like this from the Bible. I knew that David prayed like this three times a day facing Jerusalem. I knew that Jesus
peace be upon and prayed like this. I said, My God, I got I really I these people are worshipping God. Go ask. So after the prayer, I went, and I asked the man.
I said, um, he started, first of all to try to tell me about Islam, that Islam is built on five, you know, principle, I said, Look, there's nothing really you can say, there's going to convince me I said, your speech that you had today that intrigued me, but it won't convince me. I said, What I have one question for you. Do you have proof of what you say? Do you have something you can place right here in my hands to prove what you say? He said, Come with me.
He took me to his office, and he pulled a little book off the shelf. And he handed it to me. And that book, when I looked at it, it was a blue book. They said the Noble Quran, the Noble Quran. And I said, What is this? He said, it's the Word of God. I say, yeah, I've heard that before.
And he said that it was revealed to Prophet I said, Look, you don't need to tell me anything about the book. If let me take the book home and read it. Is that okay? Take it home, read it. So I took it home. And I started reading. And when I opened it the first time, I realized that I was in the index, and that I was at the back of the book. So I was like, wait a minute. So I had to flip the book over and start from the back. So it was backwards. I was like, the book is backwards. Makes no sense. But I started with the beginning, or the end, however you want to put it. And the first chapter was called the opening. And when I read the opening, it was so like Jesus's prayer that he
taught the disciples it was it was amazing, that it was just like how Jesus taught his disciples to pray. Because the first half of Jesus prayer to His disciples to praise God, our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name, thy kingdom come, thy will be done, etc. And the second half of this prayer was to ask God for His deliverance and his forgiveness and his deliverance on the right path, which is the prayer that Jesus taught his disciples lead us this and to this day, none of temptation but deliver us from evil for that as the power of the kingdom glory from
Revenant Raman. But when I turned the book to the second chapter, what really caught my attention was the first verse that I could read. Because the first verse made no sense to me am, I really understand that. But the second one said, this is the book that contains no doubt. This is the book that contains no doubt. And it is a guidance for those who fear God, that you have to understand how great of a challenge that is to be at the beginning of the book. It's a beautiful statement to come at the beginning of the book, that this is the book without doubt, and it is a guidance if you do fear God. So I said, Oh, yeah, I found out in every book, I've found a reason to doubt every book, I
will find a reason to doubt this one. So I kept reading chapter two. And it told me again, it challenged me that if you're in doubt about this book, bring something like it, and call your helpers to help you. And if you can't bring something like it, which you won't be able to do, then you need to feel the fire that I created, whose fuel will be men and stones. And then the book again, is telling me that if this had been from other than God, it would have contained contradiction, and you would find it. And then I got the chapter three, four, and five, and I start noticing names I've known all my life. Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses, lot, David, Solomon, Zechariah,
john the baptist, Jesus, and I'm so I'm I know these names, I know these people. But the difference in this book, they were prophets and messengers, and they were prophets and messengers to the greatest extent, meaning that they preached God's message. And they themselves were the first to live up to that message. They were the exemplars of that message. They lived it and showed people, not only am I telling you to obey God, but I'm commanding you to follow me. And I will show you the right way to do it. This is how it should be. I said, this is how it should be God's prophets should preach the message and show it at the same time. And these were the people of this book. And no
matter how hard I tried, I could not find something that would blatantly contradict itself, I could not find a contradiction. I could not find a mistake, even in the English language. And for 14 years, 13 years later happens. But when I got to the end of the book, because I was addicted, after three days, I was done. I closed chapter 114 of the Quran. The only thing I could say to myself, alone in my room on Sunday evening, was this is the book that has no doubt in it. This is indeed the book that does not contain doubt. And it is truly a guidance for those who want to fear their Creator. So I said to myself, even though I think Muslims are crazy, because all I knew, they have
this book somehow. And this book is true. So I said, I want to be like the people of this book. So I went back to the Imam The next day, I knocked on his door and I told him, I want to be a Muslim. First of all, I interrogate him. I said, where'd you get this book?
Then I told him, I want to be a Muslim. He said, Why? I said, because your book is what it says it is. It is what it says it is I said, he said, Yes. Okay. Do you believe there's only one God worthy of worship? I said, I've always believed that that's what God has taught since the beginning.
He said, but that's only one half of becoming a Muslim. The other half is you have to believe in Prophet Mohammed. So let me come and tell you a little bit about Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him. I said, you don't need to tell me anything about Prophet Muhammad peace upon him, except for answer me one question he said was that I said, Did he give us this book? He said, Yes, I said, then he is who He says He is. If he gave us this book, he is indeed a prophet, because God is perfect. And the book is perfect. Therefore the medium in between has to be just as perfect. So I accepted Islam on that day, in December of 1998. And let me tell you that all of my research into both books, up until
this day, which has not stopped that book, the Koran and that book, The Bible has only continued to verify the information which I understood in December of 1980. It's only solidified It is only backed it up. It's only rectified that information, that this is the truth from God, that the God's message was in the Bible for a time but it's been lost. It has been lost. And we know there's been lost, verifiably historically has been lost. But the Quran came and cleared it all up. It did it for me, it cleared everything up. It put everything into its right place in its right perspective. And it is what it says it is it is the divine miracle. It is the divine miracle. And I finished with
this last two statements, and I'll be done in five minutes.
This statement is very beautiful, is that when I was asked how can we verify not only the Koran but the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him? How do you verify this man?
We know that the prophets all work miracles. This is for the benefit of my Muslims brothers sisters Am I guess all the prophets work miracles, correct? Yes, they all did miracles. Noah had miracles, right? Let's just start with Moses. Moses had miracles, right? Yes. Did anyone in this room ever see a miracle done by Moses with the two eyes? No, there's no one here that witnessed any of the miracles of Moses. This is why Moses was for a time and his message was for a time. We know that all the prophets did miracles all the way David did miracle Solomon did great
Miracles, Jesus peace be upon him did miracles right? Yes, he did lots of miracles he raised the dead he gave, he healed the sick, he healed the blind, so on and so forth, that anyone in here ever witnessed with the own two eyes, any of these miracles recorded by Jesus, with your own two eyes, you saw Jesus Himself do a miracle. Or you saw the miracle yourself? No, that's because it was for a time. It was for a time and a place and a people. And that time in that place, and that people has passed as Jesus Himself said, My message is not over. But I have to go so that it can become completed. And when the Spirit of truth comes, he will complete my message, and he will lead you
into all truth and He will guide you into all righteous and He will speak of that which he is. Now, when it comes to Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him. Did he do miracles? Yes, we did miracles he split the sea, you know, he did I mean, he split the, the moon, he fed people with we fed Abu huraira and all of the people of the masjid of Medina, with one little cup of milk, so on and so forth.
He did many miracles. Did any of you ever see a miracle? Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him? I did.
I've seen it. I see it each and every single day. It's called the Quran. That is his miracle. It is everlasting. It has not been changed. 1400 years ago, it was revealed as the same as it is today. It is his everlasting miracle. This is why when we speak of Mohammed, we say that Mohammed is the messenger of God. We say about all the other messengers they were the Messenger of God, but we refer to Mohammed we say he is because that which he brought is still with us. It is still unchanged, that is still truthful, it is still beneficial, it is still equitable, is still applicable to way of social society, ways of life, personal, social, everything economic. That is, the greatest miracle
that I have learned is that his miracle is this is why we still refer to him as Muhammad Rasul Allah, He is the messenger of God. And for the benefit of my Muslim brothers and sisters.
Don't let people like me in 1998 be running around in the city, wanting to know the truth, wanting to know what's right and what's wrong, wanting to know about this religion of Islam that they're hearing all about on the news through misinformation. Don't let them be looking for the truth. While you're sitting around on your behinds doing nothing. Like the people in the end of my road, were doing Muslims at the end of my street, I'm looking for the truth and I could not find them, I had to go track them down. Do not let anyone do that, because they will not come to you most of the time. If they do, they will come to you with misinformation and disinformation. They're not coming to your
Masjid most of the times, they won't come unless they're in a group or unless they're brave. So you need to get active in distributing this message. Jesus peace be upon in my last statement said something, which is very beautiful reportedly in the Bible. He said no one would light a candle and take it into their home and then place a bucket on top of it. Because no one benefits from that type of light. He said no, someone would take that candle into their home, and let everyone benefit from the light.
We have as Muslims, the most beautiful light, trust me, I've seen it. I've seen it from the outside, as well seen it from outside looking in. It's beautiful, it's gorgeous. It is the most beautiful light, Allah says he is the light of the heavens in the earth. And that light radiates through you that light. And that beauty of this religion can be seen through you. But not when you're a candle with a bucket on top. Not when you're a candle that has a bucket placed on it, and you're not dispensing this information, then it becomes a burden upon you. Your only job is to share that light to remove that bucket and let people see the beauty of Islam through your actions through your life
through the way you live your life to the way you exemplify Islam in your daily lives, through the way the Muslims conduct their affairs socially, economically, personally with one another with with with a greater society. When we do that, the light will draw people unto itself, just like a flame draws moss into it. It will draw people but right now we're not doing that. We are not living that. And I have to apologize to my non Muslim friends here, that we are not doing our job. And we are sincerely sincerely apologetic that we're going to try to do better. And we hope that in the next generation, you will see a group of young men and women who will grow up and show you what Islam can
really do for your life. How it can really change your life. How can you really change your society, how it can really better the world? And how it can solve and answer almost every single and I will I will say every single social, personal economic world that the world is facing today. This is the only solution is the Pure religion that God gave to humanity to live according to life the way he wanted them to live, as he being the designer of the whole system himself should know best how it should operate. So this is what we should do as a Muslim. And we are the first ones that are abandoning that as of now, but we're going to try to do better. And we promise you that we will try
to do better and please hold us accountable when we don't do things that are becoming and seemingly and so that we can correct ourselves. And now as I leave, I don't think we're gonna have time for too many questions and maybe a couple personal questions that I will be over at the end. I want to forgive you for taking too much of your time.
I want to forgive you for missing out on bits of pieces of information. Okay, so questions.
Questions, questions? Questions? Yes?
Okay, very good question. First of all, thank you very much for that question. That's a beautiful question. Did everyone hear the question? We as Muslims believe in something called the Injeel, which is translated as the gospel. It really means like the good news, the delivery of the good news. And in my lecture, I questioned the validity of the Gospels, which we have now
to some to clarify that we as Muslims believe in the Injeel, or the gospel given to Jesus Christ, we do believe the gospel that was given to Jesus Christ. But we also believe that that gospel does not exist now. It has not, it's not been retained. It is not available in its original format. And that's one thing that I have come to realize through studying the Gospels that we have now which are considered Matthew, Mark, Luke, and john, which were given their name as the Gospels, by church fathers, a couple 100 Church Fathers about 1000 years ago. But we believe that that is not the gospel. We believe that the gospel was the words that Jesus Christ peace be upon him himself spoke,
and that those words have not been retained in their fullness up until this day. I don't know if that that that kind of sums it up. Yes.
I know very little.
Yes, oh, like I said, when it comes to the gospel of Mark, which is the oldest existing of the Canon that we have, the gospel of Mark is attributed not to work it's it's it's known amongst Christianity as attributed to mark himself. But
Christian academia. As far as Textual Criticism goes in historical critical analysis, do not give mark, the eyewitness account that it was written by Mark they have no idea who exactly was written by they don't not say it was verified, written by Mark. But their Mark was using a document that existed there was even older than what Mark is called the cue document that may have indeed been our eyewitness account of Jesus Christ, life in his sayings. But that cue document has not survived. The only thing that has survived is what Mark has pulled from that. And that is why, even amongst mark, that mark we have now is collected from a different number of documents, that there is no existing
full document of Mark, no one says they have the full existing all written at the same time, the same place of Mark, it's collected from a number of manuscripts placed together. And there are problems even in the book of Mark itself. I have had the witness opportunity myself to look at a
page out of an old manuscript dating dating back over 1000 years, probably about 1100 years of Mark, that two scribes were arguing about what what was supposed to be supposed to be on the page, one of them had changed a word to mean something else and then another scribe came and cross that out and put it again and then the same scribe that changed it the first time came back and change it again and wrote in the wrote in the margin, stop changing the writing use Don't fool he wrote in Greek stop changing the writing, you don't fool. So you know, that there has been some problems that have taken place amongst that. That being said,
since we cannot trace back the validity, since we cannot trace back the exact reference points to who wrote mark and where did we get from Okay, this cue document where does the cue document go? We don't have it is is is where I draw the line and saying that I don't believe that is exactly what Jesus peace be upon him may have said, and even if that's as close as we can get, even the Church Fathers themselves argued, amongst these documents, we go back to erroneous, who was his was a Christian in the first century after Christ, who was a proponent of the of the
monotheism of Christianity. He was someone who did not believe Jesus Christ, peace be upon him as being God. He believed him as being a divine teacher, but he was arguing with with some of the other church fathers that Jesus was not the same substance of God. He was not God, he was not of God, and then you had your thesis, and it's
Arguing back and forth about this. This was a big raging argument in the first three centuries of Christianity was, who was Jesus? What did he say? What did he teach? What was his nature? And you know, it all came to a head at nicea. which in itself, all Christians, I I enjoy you that if you're going to read the Bible, please go study the Council of Nicea and how it is that you read what you read. And just open your mind to the fact that there aren't other eyewitness accounts other than the Matthew, Mark, Luke and john, we have the eyewitness accounts almost we have what is called a closer eyewitness account in the Gospel of Thomas. There's a Gospel of Thomas that is that has some a
little bit of validity as well, but it says something different, but it is varied as well. But there are other eyewitness accounts, there's the gospel of, of Thomas, there is the Gospel of Barnabas, which its its validity has is in question as well, because we can't trace it back any farther than then then around 1200. You know, so we have this problems with that as well. So that's why I say since there's so many problems amongst it, you know, we have to refer to something else to verify it.
And if that makes any sense, it's even Christian academia, they, they fight about these things, amongst themselves, what's valid, what document what text, what document is more valid, which of this one is agreement? Because there are various readings? There are various readings of every gospel.
Any other question? Sure. Absolutely.
Thank you very much.
Absolutely, as a beautiful, beautiful question. If God reveals his message, then he should protect it right?
If we follow that example, then we should still be following the law of Moses as well, because the law of Moses was revealed by God as well. So there'll be no need for that to go. You know, I mean, according to that theology, if God is going to protect this word, but we have to understand that God best understands his creation. And he understands that creation from the beginning to the end is not going to be the same. Therefore, the same laws that he sent to one people 1000s of years ago, are not going to fit very well into a society in that 10,000 years, or 5000 years down the road. So the law of God was all meant as a leading up or a, an I don't like to use the word evolution, because
the connotations behind it, but in an evolution of a sense that God's message was not complete. It was in the beginning phase going forward, and on and on, and leading up to the fact that God was going to send because even Jesus Peace be on himself alluded to his message was not done. Jesus peace be upon him said, I have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. You know, so we see that there was even Jesus himself came and changed a few things in the law. He was accused of this, why are you changing things in the law? And he said, I have not come to change the law, but to fulfill it, meaning that he has come to put things back in their proper perspective when it comes to
God's law and how he deals with creation. So if we said that God, if he sends a law, it has to be protected? And if not, then that's blasphemy, then we should all still be following the first law that God sent, which was to Moses, and we would still be following and enacting that same law. But you know, that's, that's, that's why I would go with that. Yeah, sure.
No, absolutely. Jesus was a fulfillment of the law. But the problem comes is when we take the word fulfillment and changes meaning to abolishment, because the connotation is that his fulfilling the law meant that it came to an end. That is that is the understood theology is that Jesus fulfilling the law through his sacrifice through his crucifixion, means and into the law, that the law is no more needed, that we pass on from that law that was given to Moses under the law of grace, but that is still part of the same law. But it doesn't make sense because it abolish is we don't follow that law anymore. You know, as far as anything that anything that goes in that law, Paul himself says
that the law is is is is the schoolmaster to lead us to Christ. Once we come into Christ, we're no longer the need of the master. He He's a big proponent of the law cannot be led into salvation nor should a someone who comes into
grace by Jesus Christ crucifixion, they should not follow the law. So this is this is the only problem that I have is yes, I believe that Jesus was the fulfillment of the law, but not in the sense of abolishing that's that's where I would draw the agreement to do this or the agreement to disagree.
Yes, all the way in the back.
And the answer to the
Why would that be lost?
I wouldn't say that the law is number one, completed with the with the beginning of the law of Moses, it was perfect. Yes, it was perfect, but meant for a time meant for a time frame meant for a period was not an everlasting law. It was not something that was meant to be forever. Because if it was meant to be forever, then there's no need for any other prophets to come except but to verify, again, to follow the same law. But we see that God can send you the same prophets and messengers, in order to redefine that law in order to bring about a
good understanding of that law based on the people that were there, because it's very hard to keep a connotation of a law over 5000 10,000 however long period of time you may have, this is why I say did not abolish it, but the law kind of, kind of like you have a computer, you have a computer, and every once in a while it needs an update, you know, 2.0 2.1 to, you know, to fit into an existing parameters. This is I don't want to similar to God's law, but in the sense that it was revealed in this state. And then God would send revelations, to redefine it in the light of what people are going through, but it's the same law, it's still the same law, you still worshipping the same God
that the rules of the law have not changed. You worship God, you obey Him. And then if you make a mistake, you repent to him, and he's the one who forgives you. But the defining things like the social parts of the law, and and the economic parts of the law have to change, I mean, is just irrelevant. The thing that we're going to live a social life, and economic life, I just adjusted a system from 10,000 years ago, it's just not going to make any sense. No, that humanity is going to progress, technology is going to bend, so on and so forth. Therefore, the law needs to come in that purpose in that sense. And that's one beauty about the Quran, to be honest with you, is that since
God revealed his complete law, through the Quran, the completion of his entire law for humanity, the day of judgment, you see, when studying the laws of the Quran, and the way the laws of the Quran are implemented, they leave in within themselves, the room to be put into any social situation, any advancement, society may go through, and yet they still fit within it and they still can be, still live up to the spirit of the message, because it's still there, we still understand the spirit and how to enact it. This is what the scholars do when enacting the law of the Quran. This is one beauty of the Quran that is hard to to address without you having to take a look at it yourself. I mean,
this is my my suggestion is that before people
speak ill against the Quran and the things that it says in laws isn't an act, take a look at it first actually go through that law and look at it and look at the implementations look at the justifications. And you will see quite a different picture than what is painting about the law industry and all this it's it's it's really it's a whole nother topic that could be put forward. But the best I can do is say to take a look at it, do the diligence of yourself to look
at any other questions. We're out of time. Look at last one since I asked. We'll take the last one since I I asked.
sure, it's kind of a reverse of what I said in the beginning, that that that since humanity was going through with a law that it would the law that as far as socially and, and and economically and judicially, we could not live according to a law from 10,000 years ago, because it was meant for society the same way like you couldn't plug a law that was meant for now and understandings and connotations that revolve around now to 10,000 years ago. They are however long you want to go back, they just would not have made sense. It all had a purpose and a plan behind it. This is why God sent prophets and messengers in one after another after another, there was all a purpose and a plan
design behind it. But if we do look at all the prophets in the messenger, even from the Bible, even though they were given people, God's law and message, they were always pointing forward as well. They were always pointing forward to the next thing to come. And the next thing to come and all of them pointed towards the end as well. All of them would point towards the end and the completion and the fulfillment and the day of judgment and all of that. So it just has that progression in that system behind it. That since God created human beings. He designed the world he designed everything. He knows what's going to happen from the beginning of time to the end of time. Therefore he designed
How it would go from the beginning to the end. And how he decided to put here and here and here, we don't really reach that level of understanding, because that's part of the knowledge which we don't have. But God chose why to put here put here. Why did you send Moses? And then after him he sent this Why did not send one before one after? I mean, if Jesus was the fulfillment, why didn't he send Jesus at the time of Adam, you know, I mean, we don't we don't know why God chose to put where he put what, but we trust in him, that he is the designer, the creator, he knows best. And we just follow and implement those commands. The Muslim belief is that they all have a place in a portion,
everything, just like we read in the Bible for everything, there is an appointed time, everything, there's an appointed season, it all has place, and God's way system, everything has perfect place. We as human beings are the only thing that makes the problem. We are the ones that really mess things up and make it make problems. But that does not
say that God's system is flawed. No, it's we that we are flawed is with a flawed, and that really, us not being able to live up to the law shows us number one, the greatness of God, because this law is perfect. This is the establishment he wants. But it also reminds us of how weak we are ourselves and how much we are in need of God, to number one, help us to be able to live up to that law, and then help us when we can't do it, to be able to forgive us to be able to look upon us with forgiveness and mercy. Because he knows he created us you know that we cannot live up to this perfect law. Therefore he has put in as well.
A system of repentance. He's put in a system of forgiveness he's put in we as Muslims believe that God, peace be upon him has written before he did anything else. He wrote for himself an agreement amongst himself that my mercy will always overcome my anger. When it comes to my creation, my mercy will always overcome my anger. Because if God dealt with this with just anger, he would be done. He will, he will destroy everything. There'll be nothing existing on Earth. But he deals with us with mercy. And therefore he created a law, he could not create a Florida law because nothing coming from the creator can be imperfect. So the law is going to be perfect by its very nature, any law he sends
is going to be perfect by its nature because it comes from God. We are the only imperfect in the picture. So he has also placed a system for us to come back to him as well. This is the way we look at it.
And I thank you very much for your time. I'm gonna be here for maybe about 15 minutes.