Christians do not always know everything about everyone else’s religion. Christians will spend time reading the Bible, going to servicesor Christian meetings and studies, and in some case expand their studies to include a variety of other spiritual practices. But as a rule, Christians do not know everything there is to know about the religion of Islam. On the other hand, Muslims do not fully understand Christianity, and will often use any or all of seven methods to try to proselytize those willing to listen to them. These methods include: 1) Casting doubt on the validity and power of the Bible, 2) Attempting to set Paul against Jesus, 3) Misrepresenting Christian doctrine, 4) Misrepresenting various Scripture passages, 5) Failing to differentiate between the Protestant and Catholic doctrines, 6) Claiming their thinking is correct and Christian thinking is incorrect, 7) Changing topics when they are challenged. Today’s post is the first in a seven part series on this topic. There are many faiths that attack Christianity. I am pointing out tactics used by Muslims because that is the most concentrated group which is attacking Christianity at this time, except for perhaps the atheists. But on any attacks against Christians to either discredit them, or the Christian Bible, the philosophy is the same.
1. Attacking the validity of the Bible.
At the fall of man in the Garden of Eden, it was God’s sovereignty, God’s Word, that was challenged. This is the same challenge today, when the Bible’s credibility, is challenged by Muslims, or anyone else. The tactics and deception about God’s Word are the same. In particular, Muslims will state that the Bible has numerous contradictions. To the Christian who is not fully mature in his own faith, it is easier for Muslims to win arguments and confound Christians. Usually, the lack of understanding occurs when Muslims lack understanding of biblical theology and context, in an effort to undermine the strength and integrity of God’s Word. Muslims attempt to refute the Bible saying it is full of contradictions, but cannot quite put their finger on the contradiction. Do not be afraid to do the research. It is better to get back to him with a real Christian answer rather than allow him to make unsubstantiated statements. Muslims have also been known to criticize the lack of original manuscripts, while they say they have all original manuscripts. However, they use their own material to confirm their statements, and do not confirm by outside sources.
Just so Christians know, the New World Translation Of The Holy Scriptures, is translated from original scriptures and codices that they were first written in, not from translations of translations. There are people who have learned the original Sanskrit, Hebrew and Aramaic languages. It is possible to understand the original intent. Even so, the slightest variations of intent in God’s Word, does not render completely different meanings. So do your homework, and in turn, help your Muslim friend to understand the full and alive Word of God in the Bible.
“The word of our God endures forever.” Isaiah 40:8
However, Muslims still will compare the Bible to the Koran and state that the Koran is the guaranteed, preserved, direct word of Allah given by the angel Gabriel to Muhammad. Of course, what they fail to mention is:
– The Bible documents are well attested as being reliable and accurate. In fact, we have around 24,000 ancient manuscripts of the New Testament. So much so, that no major area of Christian doctrine is affected by possible variations among manuscripts.
– Regarding the Koran, Muhammad couldn’t read or write; so he recited the Koran to people who then wrote it down. There is no evidence at all that the Koran was written down in its entirety in Muhammad’s lifetime and compiled as a unit. So how could he have verified its truth?
– Shortly after Muhammad’s death, the Muslim Uthman ordered all sets of the Koran manuscripts to be destroyed except the codex of Zaid. Why? Is it because Zaid’s copy was better? If so, how do we know? Did differences in the copies arise so quickly that discrepancies were evident, and Uthman recognized the need for a standardized copy lest Islam suffer division? It raises doubt on the Koran’s supposed incorruptibility.
Muslims claim that Allah said the Koran would be preserved. But, the mere claim is not enough. It is using the Koran to substantiate the Koran which is circular reasoning.
Muslims also claim that the Bible is false because it contradicts the Koran (Qur’an). This is simply begging the question. That means that one assumes the validity of the thing that he is trying to prove. The Muslim assumes the validity of the Qur’an; and because it contradicts the Bible, the Bible is wrong in their mistaken reasoning. The Christian can just as easily state that the Koran is wrong because it contradicts the Bible. But the Muslims would not accept that. Using their same argument, we cannot accept their argument either.
This information is courtesy of Christian Apologetics and Research Ministry, CARM, and is helpful in shining a light on this subject, in an article written by Matt Slick. Tomorrow I will continue this series.