The Message of Jesus according to Islam

Sami Zaatari


According to Quran the prophet Jesus taught his fellow people about monotheism:

"'It is Allah Who is my Lord and your Lord; then worship Him. This is a Way that is straight.'" (3:51)

But said Christ: "O Children of Israel! worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord." Whoever joins other gods with Allah,- Allah will forbid him the garden, and the Fire will be his abode. There will for the wrong-doers be no one to help. (5:72)

So Jesus taught his people about pure monotheism, to worship the one and true God, and that this message was the straight path, the path that leads to salvation. Now in light of this there are several Christians who argue that this makes no sense, after all the Jewish Israelites whom Jesus was sent to were a monotheistic people, these were the Jews, they had the 10 commandments and were taught that there was only one God and so forth. It wasn't like Jesus was sent to the Hindus, Buddhists, or polytheistic pagans, hence why in the world would Jesus' main message be centred on pure monotheism?

All of this once again shows the ignorance of our Christian opponents, and their lack of emphasis and regard for the message of monotheism, indeed all prophets and messengers were sent to their people with the message of pure monotheism, as the Quran clearly states:

Not a messenger did We send before thee without this inspiration sent by Us to him: that there is no god but I; therefore worship and serve Me. (21:25)

So the Quran makes it clear that all messengers were sent with the message of monotheism, that there is no God but the true God, and only He deserves all worship. So when the Quran mentions Jesus and mentions how he taught his people this message we should not go and say oh well these people were already monotheists, therefore this doesn't make sense, no, God never sends a messenger with a meaningless message, God will never send a messenger to teach about the pure monotheism of God if the situation was not dire and if the people were not in need of being reminded and taught about this message.

Now there are two reasons as to why Christians may make this argument, and they are either of the following: a) they are ignorant of pure monotheism and what it means, b) they are ignorant of their own Gospels!

So with that said let us read their very own Gospels and see what Jesus said against his people, specifically the people who were in charge of the Jews, their leaders, and teachers:

Making the word of God of none effect through your tradition, which ye have delivered: and many such like things do ye. (Mark 7:13)

So notice what Jesus says against his people, he accuses them of making the word into nothing, making it of no use, making it of no effect, and rather they have disregarded the book of God for their own man made traditions. So the Jews were guilty of doing the following:

.Making the word of God useless

.Using their own man made traditions and rulings over the book of God

We also read the following:

He answered and said unto them, Well hath Esaias prophesied of you hypocrites, as it is written, This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. Howbeit in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men. For laying aside the commandment of God, ye hold the tradition of men, as the washing of pots and cups: and many other such like things ye do. And he said unto them, Full well ye reject the commandment of God, that ye may keep your own tradition. (Mark 7:6-9)

So notice how Jesus accuses his people of laying aside the commandment of God, which is the Book of God, their Torah, and replacing it with their own man made traditions as well, he even goes further and says they REJECT the commandment so that they can keep their own man made traditions.

Now comes the very interesting part, when one reads the Quran one will find that Jesus taught his people to WORSHIP the true God, I will paste the verses again:

"'It is Allah Who is my Lord and your Lord; then worship Him. This is a Way that is straight.'" (3:51)

But said Christ: "O Children of Israel! worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord." Whoever joins other gods with Allah,- Allah will forbid him the garden, and the Fire will be his abode. There will for the wrong-doers be no one to help. (5:72)

Notice the emphasis of Jesus' message according to the Quran is centred around WORSHIP. Now pure monotheism is not restricted to believing in the one true God, yes, the Jews believed that there was one true God, yet just because they acknowledge this does not make them pure monotheists, and this is where the Christian ignorance lies, they do not properly understand monotheism. A true monotheist not only believes that God is one, rather a true monotheist believes that there is only one true God, and that all worship belongs to this God as well, hence if a person's worship of God is corrupt and wrong, then he is not a true monotheist.

Now were the Jews worshipping God in a proper and monotheistic fashion? The answer is a clear NO! We just read the passages from the Bible itself where Jesus accuses the Jews of replacing the law of God with their own man made traditions, and this my friends is impure worship! A true worshiper of God does not replace the laws of God with his own laws, rather a true worshiper of God keeps the laws of God and puts this above the man mad traditions, worshiping God does not simply mean you pray to him, no, worshiping God entails all and complete obedience and submission to him, including his rules and regulations. Hence when the Jews began to put their own man made laws above the law of God itself, they then committed polytheism by this very act, because this by itself made their own laws into a new god and above the true God, and this is precisely why Jesus was sent to them teaching them about pure monotheism, and to worship God.

In fact the Quran accuses the Jews of being polytheists:

The Jews call 'Uzair a son of Allah, and the Christians call Christ the son of Allah. That is a saying from their mouth; (in this) they but imitate what the unbelievers of old used to say. Allah's curse be on them: how they are deluded away from the Truth! They take their priests and their anchorites to be their lords in derogation of Allah, and (they take as their Lord) Christ the son of Mary; yet they were commanded to worship but One Allah: there is no god but He. Praise and glory to Him: (Far is He) from having the partners they associate (with Him). (9:30-31)

So the Quran accuses the Jews of taking their priests and leaders as lords instead of God, and in the hadiths we have a report which states the following:

(They took their rabbis and their monks to be their lords besides Allah, and the Messiah, son of Maryam) [9:31]. Imam Ahmad, At-Tirmidhi and Ibn Jarir At-Tabari recorded a Hadith via several chains of narration, from `Adi bin Hatim, may Allah be pleased with him, who became Christian during the time of Jahiliyyah. When the call of the Messenger of Allah reached his area, `Adi ran away to Ash-Sham, and his sister and several of his people were captured. The Messenger of Allah freed his sister and gave her gifts. So she went to her brother and encouraged him to become Muslim and to go to the Messenger of Allah . `Adi, who was one of the chiefs of his people (the tribe of Tai') and whose father, Hatim At-Ta'i, was known for his generosity, went to Al-Madinah. When the people announced his arrival, `Adi went to the Messenger of Allah wearing a silver cross around his neck. The Messenger of Allah recited this Ayah;

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(They took their rabbis and their monks to be their lords besides Allah). `Adi commented, "I said, `They did not worship them.''' The Prophet said,

(Yes they did. They (rabbis and monks) prohibited the allowed for them (Christians and Jews) and allowed the prohibited, and they obeyed them. This is how they worshipped them.) The Messenger of Allah said to `Adi,

: :

(O `Adi what do you say Did you run away (to Ash-Sham) so that 'Allahu Akbar' (Allah is the Great) is not pronounced Do you know of anything greater than Allah What made you run away Did you run away so that `La ilaha illallah' is not pronounced Do you know of any deity worthy of worship except Allah)

The Messenger invited `Adi to embrace Islam, and he embraced Islam and pronounced the Testimony of Truth. The face of the Messenger of Allah beamed with pleasure and he said to `Adi,

(Verily, the Jews have earned the anger (of Allah) and the Christians are misguided.) Hudhayfah bin Al-Yaman, `Abdullah bin `Abbas and several others said about the explanation of,

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(They took their rabbis and their monks to be their lords besides Allah...) that the Christians and Jews obeyed their monks and rabbis in whatever they allowed or prohibited for them. This is why Allah said,

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(while they were commanded to worship none but One God), Who, whatever He renders prohibited is the prohibited, whatever He allowed is the allowed, whatever He legislates, is to be the law followed, and whatever He decides is to be adhered to;

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(None has the right to be worshipped but He. Hallowed be He above what they associate (with Him).) Meaning, exalted, sanctified, hallowed above partners, equals, aids, rivals or children, there is no deity or Lord worthy of worship except Him.

So as you can see when the above verse was revealed, a new convert to Islam told the prophet Muhammad that the Jews didn't take their rabbis and leaders as lords and that they didn't worship them, yet the prophet Muhammad told him that they did, and they did this by following their rabbis and their rulings over the rulings of Allah, and this was their act of polytheism! So just because the Jews don't make prayers and bow to their leaders and so forth does not mean they are not worshipping them, their worshipping is by placing the ruling and manmade traditions of their rabbis over the rulings of God.

Hence when you put all of this together, Jesus' message of pure monotheism makes perfect sense, and is exactly what we would expect him to be preaching, and the very fact that Christians don't understand this reveals their ignorance about monotheism and what it means.

And Allah knows best!