Tag Archives: Christ

Angel of the Lord as God?

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ ,

We’ve read from a few missionaries that Christ Jesus is also the Angel of the Lord. There’s a major problem with such a concept though and we begin our response to such a notion by quoting Matthew 1:

But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream…..
When Joseph woke up, he did what the angel of the Lord had commanded him and took Mary home as his wife. – Matthew 1:20, 24.

The question begs itself, if Jesus is the angel of the Lord, then who appeared to Joseph? Adam Clarke comments:

The angel of the Lord mentioned here was probably the angel Gabriel, who, six months before, bad been sent to Zacharias and Elisabeth, to announce the birth of Christ‘s forerunner, John the Baptist. See Luke 1:36.

Coffman’s Commentaries on the Bible states:

An angel of the Lord This is perhaps the same angel whose name is given in Luke 1:19,26; if so, he is Gabriel. The existence of angels affords no difficulty for Christians. The Scriptures abound with the deeds of angels. Angels announced the birth of Christ, ministered to Jesus in the wilderness of temptations, strengthened him in the garden of Gethsemane, and escorted him to glory.

So who is the angel of the Lord? Gabriel! According to who? The New Testament’s Gospel according to Luke! So unless Gabriel is Jesus, then the angel of the Lord, quite clearly cannot be Jesus:

The angel said to him, “I am Gabriel. I stand in the presence of God, and I have been sent to speak to you and to tell you this good news. – Luke 1:19.

The Angel of the Lord is therefore the Angel Gabriel. For one to claim otherwise, then missionaries such as Anthony Rogers and David Wood would have to prove that Jesus is Gabriel, which isn’t difficult since he’s already half man, half God, Melchezidek, YHWH and a few other people.

wa Allaahu ‘Alam.

Prayer to Baby Jesus

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ ,

This is both funny and ironic at the same time. To be quite honest, this is as raw as you can get in really understanding Christian dogmatic logic. This isn’t meant as an insult, or something to denigrate our brothers in faith with, but it is meant to highlight the sheer audacity they have to worship a human being.

Enjoy!
wa Allaahu ‘Alam.

A Case Study of Peter’s Denial

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ ,

Note: This article by sister Elisabeth Strout, a female revert from the depths of Christianity to the heights of Islam, read her story here.

While getting ready to teach a Sunday School class on the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus, my mother asked me what Islam teaches about these issues. Honestly, I responded that the Qur’an simply states categorically that Jesus didn’t die, the Jews only thought they killed him. While that leaves room for countless theories, from the switching of bodies with a look-alike, to the swoon theory, the basic teaching is that Jesus did not die and come back to life, but rather ascended to heaven without dying. I concluded with the assertion that Christians themselves cannot trust their own Bible’s teaching, as it’s riddled with contradictions. My parents confidently disavowed any possibility of discrepancy between the Bible’s four accounts of the event, and as a result, I’ve spent the last few days studying the four Biblical crucifixion and resurrection narratives closely, to analyze the contradictions between them.

There are quite a few, and while some may be written off with the “inclusive” explanation (i.e. Matthew and Mark recount Jesus’ last words as being “my God, my God why have you forsaken me”, Luke claims they were “into thy hands I commit my spirit”, while John says they were “it is finished”, and Christians generally claim that Jesus said all three in succession, “my God, my God why have you forsaken me, into your hands I commit my spirit, it is finished”.), there are some narratives that cannot be reconciled, no matter how you superimpose them.

Rather than posting them all here at once and leave readers floundering in all the references, I decided to start with a case study of one particular event in the story, namely Peter’s denial of Christ. While the wording differs insignificantly between the three questioners who point Peter out, that is not primarily of interest. Take a look at Matthew and Luke’s accounts, which are almost identical, and then compare them with John, and then Mark, and notice the incompatible details:

Matthew 26:69-75

  • All disciples flee upon Jesus’ arrest, Peter follows at a distance.

  • A servant girl in the courtyard says, “You also were with Jesus the Galilean,” Peter responds, “I do not  know what you mean”.

  • different servant girl at the gate says, “This man was with Jesus of Nazareth,” Peter responds with an oath, “I do not know the man”.

  • The bystanders say, “Certainly you are one of them, your accent betrays you,” Peter responds again with an oath, “I do not know the man.”

  • The rooster crows, Peter remembers Jesus’ prediction, and weeps bitterly.

Luke 22:55-62

  • Jesus is arrested (no mention made of disciples fleeing), Peter follows at a distance.

  • A servant girl in the courtyard says, “This man also was with him,” Peter responds, “Woman, I do not know him.”

  • Another person says, “You also are one of them,” Peter responds, “Man, I am not.”

  • Another person says, “Certainly this man also was with him, for he too is a Galilean,” Peter responds, “Man, I do not know what you are talking about.”

  • The rooster crows, Peter remembers Jesus’ prediction, and weeps bitterly.

So far, so good. Again, there is a slight difference of wording, but that can be overlooked. Take note of the emphasized words in Matthew, and now watch how in John, the story takes on a lot more detail (though John was written decades later), and the contradictions begin.

John 18:15-27

  • Jesus is arrested (no mention made of disciples fleeing), Peter and another disciple follow. The other disciple gets into the courtyard because he knows an official. Peter doesn’t get into the courtyard, so the disciple sends a servant girl to open the gate for him.

  • The servant girl at the gate says, “You also are not one of this man’s disciples, are you?” and Peter responds, “I am not.”

  • The officers and servants around the fire in the courtyard say, “You also are not one of his disciples, are you?” and Peter responds again, “I am not.”

  • A relative of the man whose ear Peter cut off asks, “Did I not see you in the garden with him?” and Peter denies it.

  • The rooster crows (no mention is made of his weeping).

So now, apart from the general wording and the location of the questioners (he goes from courtyard to gate in Matt., and from gate to courtyard in John), we have several distinct differences. First, the identity of the following disciples. Matt. claims all the disciples fled except Peter, and Peter alone followed from a distance. John makes no mention of the disciples fleeing, and claims both Peter and another disciple followed. Typical of John, the other disciple remains anonymous leaving Christians to speculate that it was probably John himself. Either way, either they all fled except Peter, or they all fled except Peter and John. It can’t be both.

Secondly, the identity of the questioners. Other than the first, the servant girl, Luke leaves the second two questioners anonymous, so his version is fairly compatible with the others. Matthew on the other hand, states that the questioners were (1) a servant girl in the courtyard, (2) a different servant girl at the gate, and (3) the bystanders (identified in John as officials and servants). John claims they were (1) a servant girl at the gate, (2) the by-standing officers and servants, and (3) a relative of the man whose ear Peter cut off.

While some may be tempted to generalize “bystanders” to mean anyone, including servant girls and relatives of earless men, the gospels purposely distinguish between the two, and the relative’s words in John set him apart even further from the bystanders of Matt., Mark, and Luke. While the three synoptics list, with slightly different wording, the third questioner as having recognizing Peter as a Galilean (because of his accent in Matt.), John’s third questioner (the relative of the man whose ear Peter cut) recognizes Peter because he saw him in the garden, during the arrest. It can’t be both.

Finally, we come to Mark’s account, which has yet another notable difference. While agreeing with Matthew about all the disciples fleeing except Peter, and the third question from the bystanders about Peter being Galilean, there are a few details that don’t match up.

Mark 14:66-72

  • All disciples flee upon Jesus’ arrest, Peter follows at a distance.

  • A servant girl at the fire in the courtyard says, “You also were with the Nazarene, Jesus,” Peter responds, “I neither know nor understand what you mean.”

  • Peter goes out to the gate and the rooster crows.

  • The same servant girl sees him there and says, “This man is one of them,” and Peter denies it.

  • The bystanders say, “Certainly you are one of them, for you are a Galilean,” Peter responds with an oath, “I do not know this man of whom you speak.”

  • The rooster crows a second time, Peter remembers Jesus’ prediction, and weeps bitterly.

While Matthew specifies that the first two accusations were leveled by two different servant girls, Mark goes to the trouble of telling us they were spoken by the same servant girl. It can’t be both. The second, and more noticeable aberration, is that Mark’s account of the story, as well as his account of Jesus’ prediction, differ in the number of times the rooster crows. While Peter is told he will deny three times, and does deny three times, in all accounts, Jesus predicts it will be “before the rooster crows”, in Matt., Luke, and John, and “before the rooster crows twice”, in Mark. And sure enough, in Matt., Luke and John, Peter denies thrice before the rooster crows, while in Mark, he denies, the rooster crows (the sound of it doesn’t bring him to his senses yet), he denies twice more, and the rooster crows again. So which was it, before the rooster crows, or before it crows twice? It can’t be both.

It seems like a silly, insignificant story. Same servant girl or different one, courtyard or gate, bystanders or relative, all but one disciple or all but two disciples, Galilean accent or previous encounter in the garden, one crow or two; does it really matter? For the Christians who claim there’s not a single contradiction in the entire Bible, it does matter. You can’t get around these, and you can’t get around the dozens, if not hundreds more in the Bible, no matter how insignificant. For the more reasonable Christians who openly admit that sure, they’re ancient documents, there’s the occasional slip-up, but nothing major that affects doctrine, their intellectual honesty is refreshing, but it begs the question, can God’s divine revelation be anything less than perfect? When God sends a final text for all of mankind, shouldn’t it be held to the same standards of holiness and perfection as He himself? Others maintain that as God’s Word incarnate, Jesus himself was the final revelation, and it’s his person that matters, not the text. Yet the text is all we have of him today, and if it contradicts itself, if it can’t be trusted to deliver the truth about the small events, how can we trust its claims about matters as weighty as death and resurrection?

Refutation: How can Jesus be God, when he calls the Father the only true God?

بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ ,

Question:

Jesus himself admitted that the Father is the only true God. Since Trinitarians believe that the Father and the Son are distinct Persons, that they are not the same Person, wouldn’t this prove that Jesus denied that he was God?

Answer:

Once again, the wheels of Shamounian Logic have been rolling and here we are analysing another one of his mishaps. Sam’s answer to this question is to begin by denying that the question has any validity, as per his modus operandi the questioner is always a Unitarian or Muslim with ulterior motives. He quotes  John 17:1-5, 8, 10-11, 20-26 which reads (note: emphasis is his):

“After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed: ‘Father, the time has come. Glorify YOUR SON, that YOUR SON may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people THAT HE MIGHT GIVE ETERNAL LIFE TO ALL THOSE YOU HAVE GIVEN HIM. Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. I have brought you glory on earth by completing the work you gave me to do. And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I HAD WITH YOU BEFORE THE WORLD BEGAN … For I gave them the words you gave me and they accepted them. They knew with certainty that I came from you, and they believed that you sent me … All I have is yours, and all you have is mine. And glory has come TO ME through them. I will remain in the world no longer, but they are still in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, protect them by the power of your name – the name you gave me – so that they may be one as we are one … My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be IN US so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one: I IN THEM and you in me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me BECAUSE YOU LOVED ME BEFORE THE CREATION OF THE WORLD. Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them AND THAT I MYSELF MAY BE IN THEM.’”

Then he derives this list of conclusions from the passages:

  1. Jesus is God’s Son.
  2. Jesus gives eternal life to all that God gives him, which is a claim to being absolute Deity since only God can give eternal life.
  3. Jesus existed in glory with the Father even before the world was created.
  4. Jesus demands to be glorified by God, something which no mere creature could ever demand.
  5. Jesus states that everything that the Father has belongs to him, which makes him the heir of everything that exists.
  6. Jesus indwells all the believers, an indication that Christ is omnipresent and therefore God since God alone is omnipresent.
  7. Jesus is the object of the Father’s love even before the creation of the world.

To the contrary, his list is erratic, he reads meanings into words and verses that do not present the conclusions he’s arrived at (big surprise there) and they clearly don’t answer the questions at hand. If the Father is the only true God according to Christ, why is Sam trying to disprove Christ’s claim and make Christ into a deity? Let’s analyze Sam’s conclusions and debunk them one by one:

  1. The word son is used throughout the Old Testament and is not unique to Christ. See Exodus 4:22, Jeremiah 31:9 and Psalm 2:7. According to Galatians 3:26, we are all God’s son. Thus according to Shamounian Logic, we are all Gods once God calls us His son.
  2. Christ gave eternal life by being an authority over the people, as the verse clearly says. When we read John 5:30-31, we understand that his authority was as a  judge to the people and that he guided them with religious edicts. Hence this does not make him a God, but an authority operating under God’s will.
  3. God gloried Christ before the world began, just as in Ephesians 1:4, God chose all of mankind to be holy and blameless in His sight. Sam uses this verse to emphasize the ‘before the world began’ mantra of Christians, but this is also applied to all humans in the aforementioned verse and is thus not unique to Christ.
  4. Jesus explains in John 16:14 that he is glorified because he leads people to glorify God, he doesn’t demand it, rather God glorifies him because of his mission.
  5. Nowhere does Jesus state that everything which belongs to the Father belongs to him, Sam’s just making stuff up.
  6. According to the verse Sam quotes to reach this conclusion, the believers also dwell in Christ and God, thus if Sam is to be rational, if Jesus being in God makes him a deity, then the believers dwelling in God also make them deities.
  7. We are all an object of God’s love before the creation of the world, see point 3 and Ephesians 1:4.

Now, I’m not sure if Sam noticed this, but he’s found himself in a bundle, he says and I quote:

Thus, the context makes it clear that Jesus’ statement about the Father being the only true God in no way was meant to deny that Christ is God as well, since he goes on to make claims that only God could make.

There exists a significant contradiction in Sam’s statement. Christ explicitly states that the Father is the only true God. The word ‘only’ is of great importance as it denotes singularity and not plurality. Sadly, Sam Shamoun then contradicts Jesus by saying even though Christ says that their is only one true God, that Christ has lied and also claims to be a God. Therefore, Sam is claiming several notions:

  1. That Christ does not understand what the word ‘only’ means and thus is not all knowing and cannot be God.
  2. That Christ lied and therefore is not ‘The Truth” and therefore cannot be God.
  3. That Sam himself is lying about Christ and YHWH and is thus a deceiver.

Considering our options, whichever way we look to interpret Sam’s mendacious and heretical view, of Christ and YHWH, he crucifies himself by accepting that Christ implores him to follow the one deity known as the Father. It’s also important to point out that Christ never makes a Godly claim of himself, as indicated in my article: Non Compos Mentis, therefore when Sam says that Christ made statements only a deity can make, I’m still looking for such unique words which have yet to be demonstrated. Sam then goes on to claim the following:

– The Trinity is the only true God.
– Each specific member of the Trinity is the only true God.
– 
Therefore, the members of the Trinity are the only true God, whether individually or collectively.

The problem with these assumptions is that they are not stated in the Old or New Testament. Christ himself does not say that the Trinity is the only true God, he says the Father is the only true God. What Sam has done is called scriptural emendation, where he has emendated or altered the text to prove his bias notion. This is a sign of a desperate man. Christ never mentions the Trinity, or a Godhead or that each member of a Trinity is a Deity. I call upon Sam Shamoun to bring forth one statement of Jesus the Christ which says this! Since Sam’s two previous premises are false, then it logically follows that his conclusion is false.

Sam then appealed to Hebrews 1 to prove Christ’s deity, which have debunked indepth here: Does God Call Jesus God? Hebrews 1:8-12.

He continues by stating:

The same Scriptures teach that Jesus is the only sovereign Master and Lord:

“For admission has been secretly gained by some who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly persons who pervert the grace of our God into licentiousness and deny our only Master (δεσπότης) and Lord (κύριος), Jesus Christ.” Jude 1:4

The problem with this text is that Master does not denote a deity, otherwise we are all deities according to the use of the same word in Titus 2:9, which reads:

Exhort servants to be obedient unto their own masters (δεσπότης), and to please them well in all things; not answering again;

Similarly, the word Lord (κύριος) as is used in the Greek also does not denote a deity, it’s a title of honour and respect:

Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord (κύριος): whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement. – 1 Peter 3:6.

Therefore, none of the verses Sam Shamoun has referenced declares Jesus to be a deity as both terms are titles used to describe men and are titles of men. Sam then sought to embarrass himself by stating the following:

In fact, a careful reading of John 17:3 helps to further confirm that Jesus wasn’t denying his absolute Deity:

And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, AND (kai) Jesus Christ whom you have sent.”

The Lord Jesus, by using the Greek conjunction kai in his prayer, makes himself the necessary object of the knowledge that leads to eternal life. In other words, Jesus basically made himself a coequal partner with God by claiming that eternal life is dependent on knowing both the Father and the Son.

To correct Sam, the verse is rendered as such: “And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God and Jesus the Christ whom you have sent.”

Without appealing to Christians who already believe Jesus to be God, by reading the verse we see a distinction between God and the Christ, for the verse describes God as the only true God. Only denotes uniqueness and singularity, whereas ‘and Jesus the Christ‘, denotes Jesus as distinct from the God as is described as “the Christ whom you (God) have sent“. Therefore the verse by using ‘and’ distinguishes the Christ from the God, by denoting the Jesus as one sent by God. Similarly, Jesus was not made co-equal to God by claiming eternal life is dependent on knowing both Christ and God, for Christ was the one sent to teach the people about eternal life:

“Just then a man came up to Jesus and asked, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?” – Matthew 19:16.

Christ was therefore, tied to the knowledge of eternal life, for he was the teacher as sent by God to teach the people how to attain eternal life as the Gospels themselves state. There is no need to go beyond the Gospel itself and demonstrate what scholars say as that is man’s interpretation of the text, whereas the scripture itself explains in what way Jesus was tied to ‘eternal life’, i.e. his role of teaching how to attain it. This is the first rule in scriptural exegesis, something which Sam’s sect follows, known as ‘sola scriptura’, the rule is laid out as ‘interpret scripture with scripture firstly‘.

Lastly, Sam appealed to the Gospel of John to demonstrate some quotes were Jesus is mentioned as the ‘saviour of the world‘, being a saviour entails simply ‘saving’ a person or people and there were many saviours before the Christ:

“In the twenty-third year of Joash the son of Ahaziah, king of Judah, Jehoahaz the son of Jehu became king over Israel in Samaria, reigning seventeen years. But he did evil in the eyes of Yahweh, and he went after the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat with which he had caused Israel to sin, and he did not depart from it. So the anger of Yahweh was kindled against Israel, and he gave them into the hand of Hazael king of Aram and into the hand of Ben-Hadad the son of Hazael repeatedly. Then Jehoahaz entreated Yahweh, and Yahweh listened to him, for he saw the oppression of Israel, because the king of Aram oppressed them. Yahweh gave Israel a savior, and they went out from under the hand of Aram. So the Israelites lived in their tents as formerly.” – 2 Kings 13:1-5.

““But they rebelled and were rebellious against you and cast your law[l] behind their back and killed your prophets, who had warned them to turn back to you, and they did great blasphemies. 27 Therefore you gave them into the hand of their enemy, and they brought trouble to them. Then in the time of their trouble they cried out to you, and you heard from the heavens, and according to your great compassions, you gave them saviors, and you saved them from the hand of their enemies. 28 But when they had rest they returned to doing evil before you, and you abandoned them in the hand of their enemies, and they ruled over them. Then they returned and cried out to you, and from the heavens you heard and many times rescued them according to your compassions. ” – Nehemiah 9:26-28.

A saviour does not have to be a God, but merely one who ‘saves’. Seeing as YHWH sent many saviours before, then this title does not imply deity in the least. In conclusion, despite what shenanigans Sam tries, he cannot escape from the fact that Christ refers to the Father as the only true God. The word ‘onlyis defined as:

on·ly

adj.

1. Alone in kind or class; sole: an only child; the only one left.
2. Standing alone by reason of superiority or excellence.


adv.

1. Without anyone or anything else; alone: room for only one passenger.

Sorry Sam, but it seems as though you’ve found yourself in a precarious situation, the word only is a singular term, referring to something which is alone, sole or unique, it does not indicate plurality in any sense. To imply otherwise would be a gross perversion of the English language and a perverse violation of the text itself.

wa Allaahu ‘Alam.

Punishing the Female Rape Victim in Islam

Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem
بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ ,

It is unfortunate that for people who profess objectivity and sincerity in their study, research and pursuit of knowledge that there continues to be a great perversion of the understanding of Islamic Shari’ah laws and its applications. Proponents of the modern secular system, or of varying theological political systems, seemingly cannot produce a consistent stance on judging the use or misuse of the Islamic Shari’ah, while wholly regarding it to be unfair, unjust and backwards. Demonstrably, it can be noted that their own justice systems produce often, curious if not peculiar judgements. In one case, a mother can be sentenced to jail for a period of 5 years, for stealing clothing from a store for her children at a value of  $102 dollars. While at the same time a Wall Street tycoon who has defrauded enough persons to make himself a billionaire, was sentence to a period of only, 11 years. What then, can we say is logical about this? Based on this one example of a judgement that is neither proportional to the crimes when compared and contrasted nor morally justifiable, can I then generalize the American justice system as being inhumane, profiteering and socially inept?

To further this discussion with more evidences relevant to the topic at hand, let’s examine sexual assault cases, in particular rape. This child rapist was sentenced to only 5 to 7 years in prison, the same amount of time as the woman who stole $102 dollars worth of goods. This rapist was sentenced to only 9 years in prison, while defrauding persons of hundreds of millions of dollars and sending families into distress, bankruptcy and insolvency will earn you the same amount of jail time. Continuing with this trend, we can deduce that according to the modern secular system, stealing and rape are upon the same field of justice. Considering these tragic acts, let’s examine the Islamic position on rape in the modern world. To rape in Islamic law is to have committed “ightisaab”, which means to forcefully transgress and take a woman’s honour from her (rape). The crime is punishable by death but doesn’t have to be punished by death, the punishment however has to be severe as to deter anyone else from attempting this crime. Therefore, there can be no equivalence between stealing and rape, a woman’s honour is not the same as stealing an apple, or clothing as it is seen in the secular justice system.

Islamic Shari’ah rule, is intended to govern a state by Islamic law, where the ulema (religious leaders) who are fuqaha (jurists), establish courts where a qadhi (judge) can make binding rulings (fatawa) on behalf of the state against a criminal and establish justice in the society. This understanding is based upon the Qur’anic statements:

“And so judge (you O Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم) among them by what Allaah has revealed” – [al-Maa’idah 5:49].

“And whosoever does not judge by what Allaah has revealed, such are the Kaafiroon (i.e. disbelievers — of a lesser degree as they do not act on Allaah’s Laws)” – [al-Maa’idah 5:44].

“And whosoever does not judge by that which Allaah has revealed, such are the Zaalimoon (polytheists and wrongdoers — of a lesser degree)” – [al-Maa’idah 5:45].

“And whosoever does not judge by what Allaah has revealed (then) such (people) are the Fâsiqûn [the rebellious i.e. disobedient (of a lesser degree)] to Allaah” – [al-Maa’idah 5:47].

“But no, by your Lord, they can have no Faith, until they make you (O Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم) judge in all disputes between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decisions, and accept (them) with full submission” – [al-Nisa’ 4:65].

“Do they then seek the judgement of (the days of) Ignorance? And who is better in judgement than Allaah for a people who have firm Faith” – [al-Maa’idah 5:50].

To make this succinct and easy to grasp, the discussion will be broken up into several questions:

  • What do the Islamic scholars (Ulema) say on the punishment of rape?
  • Are four witnesses needed to prove rape?
  • Are women who do not wear hijab responsible for their rape?
  • Is the woman to be punished for rape?
  • Forced marriage to rapist?
  • Further reading.

What do the Islamic scholars (Ulema) say on the punishment of rape?

Yûsuf ibn `Abd Allâh ibn Muhammad Ibn `Abd al-Barr  Abû `Umar al-Namarî al-Andalusî al-Qurtubî al-Mâlikî (may Allaah be pleased with him), a prominent Islamic jurist, of whom Imam al Qurtubi cites/ references about 500 times in his tafsir has stated in Al-Istidhkâr li Madhhab `Ulamâ’ al-Amsâr fîmâ Tadammanahu al-Muwatta’ min Ma`ânî al-Ra’î wal-Athâr (“The Memorization of the Doctrine of the Scholars of the World Concerning the Juridical Opinions and the Narrations Found in Mâlik’s Muwatta'”),  7/146:

The scholars are unanimously agreed that the rapist is to be subjected to the hadd punishment if there is clear evidence against him that he deserves the hadd punishment, or if he admits to that. Otherwise, he is to be punished (i.e., if there is no proof that the hadd punishment for zina may be carried out against him because he does not confess, and there are not four witnesses, then the judge may punish him and stipulate a punishment that will deter him and others like him). There is no punishment for the woman if it is true that he forced her and overpowered her, which may be proven by her screaming and shouting for help.

Are four witnesses needed to prove rape?

Mufti Taqi Uthmani [db] in his discussion during an interview on Pakistan’s implementation of the Protection of Women Bill 2006, expounded upon his rulings and the rulings of other Islamic judges:

‎”I myself had been directly hearing cases registered under Hudood Ordinance, first as a Judge of Federal Shariah Court and then for seventeen years as a member of Shariah Appellate Bench of the Supreme Court. In this long tenure, not once did I come across a case in which a rape victim was awarded punishment simply because she was unable to present four witnesses.

In fact it was not possible to do so. First, according to the Hudood Ordinance, the condition of four witnesses only applied to enforcing the hadd for rape. Clause 10(3), which awarded the ta’zeer punishment, did not have this requirement; the crime could be proven through one witness, medical reports, and chemical analysis report. Consequently most rape criminals were awarded punishment as per this clause.

Further, a woman claiming rape could not be punished under Qazf (false accusation of zina) since Exemption 2 in Qazf Ordinance Clause 3 clearly stated that if someone approaches the legal authorities with a rape complaint, she could not be punished in case she was unable to present four witnesses.”

To compound this statement, Shaykh Faraz Rabbani (may Allaah be pleased with him) has stated:

“This is a common myth about Islamic criminal law. Rather, the four witness requirement applies only to the prescribed hadd punishment (which in the case of a married person could be death and for the non-married, 100 lashes). [Marghinani, Hidaya] This punishment is only applied in very rare cases, as is clear, and is meant to be a social deterrent, above all.

As the classical and contemporary jurists (such as Mufti Taqi Usmani) have made clear, a rapist can be convicted on lesser evidence (including scientific evidence, such as DNA tests and medical reports) for discretionary punishments. These discretionary punishments are left up to the legal system to determine.

However, it is a myth to say that Islam would in any way condone rape, or allow a rapist to go free for this terrible crime against an innocent human being and against society.”

This therefore rests the case, of the issue with 4 witnesses being needed to prove rape, indeed rape can be proven using modern scientific methods and other evidences, as seen above, as being agreed upon by Islamic fuqaha (jurists).

Are women who do not wear hijab responsible for their rape?

Mufti Muhammad Kadwa and Mufti Ebrahim Desai (may Allaah be pleased with them both) have stated:

These are two separate issues; rape and the lack of Hijaab. The rapist will be punished for his heinous crime whilst the woman will be sinful not for rape, but for failure to observe the rules of Hijaab. Failure to wear Hijaab in no way justifies the heinous crime of rape.

Is the woman to be punished for rape?

Imam Maalik (may Allaah have mercy on him) has said in Al-Muwatta’, 2/734:

In our view the man who rapes a woman, whether she is a virgin or not, if she is a free woman he must pay a “dowry” like that of her peers, …. The punishment is to be carried out on the rapist and there is no punishment for the woman who has been raped, whatever the case.

Prophet Muhammad (may Allaah’s peace and blessings be upon him) has also decreed punishments for persons who have committed rape, while freeing the woman of any punishment:

“Narrated Wa’il ibn Hujr (may Allaah be pleased with him):
When a woman went out in the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him) for prayer, a man attacked her and overpowered (raped) her. She shouted and he went off, and when a man came by, she said: That (man) did such and such to me.

And when a company of the Emigrants came by, she said: That man did such and such to me. They went and seized the man whom they thought had had intercourse with her and brought him to her. She said: Yes, this is he. Then they brought him to the Apostle of Allah (peace be upon him).

When he (the Prophet) was about to pass sentence, the man who (actually) had assaulted her stood up and said: Apostle of Allah, I am the man who did it to her.

He (the Prophet) said to her: Go away, for Allah has forgiven you. But he told the man some good words (AbuDawud said: meaning the man who was seized), and of the man who had had intercourse with her, he said: Stone him to death.”  – (Sunan Abu Dawud, Hadith #4366, Kitab al Hudud [38]).

Forced Marriage to Rapist?

While Islam punishes the rapist, we do hear of some really peculiar instances where the woman is married to the man. This has no basis in Islamic law, nor does it comply with Islamic reasoning, according to this fatwa by Mufti Ebrahim Desai [db]:

“Knowing the importance and sacredness of a marriage commitment, the boy and girl having consulted with their seniors and making Istikhaara, should make their own independent choice.

They should not be compelled to marry against their wishes as the consequences (non-compatibility, divorce, disputes, custody of children, etc.) are too ghastly to bear. Parents should not compel their children to marry against their wishes due to economic status reasons.”

As well as this fatwa by the same Mufti (Islamic Jurist):

“As an adult, you have an independent right to choose your marriage partner. You should not be forced into marrying someone against your choice. Those forcing you are guilty of depriving you of your Shar’ee right and committing a major sin,

You should simply say no if you are not confident of marrying against your choice. The consequences of forced marriages are too ghastly. There are great possibilities of a marital breakdown. That will lead to disunity among many families. The matter will be clouded even more if there is a child born through the marriage. Considering the many negative consequences of a forced marriage, you should never give in to being forced to marry against your wish. It will be you and no one else who will have to bear the burdens in future. You may forward this email to those forcing you to marry against your wishes.”

However, to contrast the Islamic position, let’s look at this excerpt from the Jewish and Christian religious text, Old Testament (Torah), Deuteronomy (Devarim), Chapter 22, Verses 28 – 29:

“If a man happens to meet a virgin who is not pledged to be married and rapes her and they are discovered, he shall pay her father fifty shekels of silver. He must marry the young woman, for he has violated her. He can never divorce her as long as he lives.”

Further Reading:
http://www.loonwatch.com/2009/12/testimony-of-rape-victim/
http://www.bismikaallahuma.org/archives/2006/does-islam-require-four-witnesses-for-rape/
http://thedebateinitiative.com/2012/03/12/is-the-shariah-inhumane-you-decide/ 

wa Allaahu Alam.
[and God knows best.]

James White’s Futility and Inconsistency

Bismillahir Rahmanir Raheem
بِسۡمِ ٱللهِ ٱلرَّحۡمَـٰنِ ٱلرَّحِيمِ ,
This video analyses James White’s evidences, his pivots during his opening statement with Br. Shabir Ally during their debate, “Did Jesus Claim Deity?”. An indepth write up to be published on Monday/ Tuesday 26th/ 27th of March fully explaining, and refuting his arguments. I was planning to write up a full response, but I’m terribly busy, please see our video response to James White instead, thanks.
wa Allaahu ‘Alam.
[and God knows best.]
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