On May 10, 2008, in Hyderabad, one of the largest ever Christian Muslim debate was held. Bro. Jerry was the Christian speaker (From Sakshi: An Apologetics Network in India) and Bro. Imran (Founder President, IREF and International Islamic Scholar) was the Muslim speaker. The topic of debate was- Divinity of Jesus and Messengerhood of Muhammad: Separating Falsehood from Truth. Following is the transcript of the presentation by Bro. Jerry Thomas (Part 1 of 2).
Solely by the grace of Jesus Christ, for the testimony of His Gospel, for Christ and His Church, I start:
Respected dignitaries on the dais and my dear brothers and sisters, I bring you greetings in the name of my beloved LORD and my sweet savior Jesus Christ whom Apostle Thomas called as My Lord and My God” (John 20:28).
The topic for today’s debate is: Divinity of Jesus and Messenger-hood of Muhammad: Separating Falsehood from Truth.
If you have paid attention to the reading of the Holy Bible in Hebrews 1, you would have already heard an irrefutable case for the divinity of Jesus.
Point 1: Who says Jesus is God? Who says worship Him?
God the Father says Jesus is God. God the Fathers says worship him.
In Hebrews 1: 8 God the Father calls Jesus as God.
In Hebrews 1:6 God the Father says “Let all the angels of God worship Jesus.”
In Hebrews 1:10 God the Father says Jesus is the creator of heavens and the earth.
This is the testimony of the Father. If anyone contradicts God the Father, he makes God a liar.
Now, bro. Imran may say:
In Surah 5: 72 Allah of the Quran says that Jesus is not God.
Then our conclusion should be Allah of the Quran is different Yehovah of the Bible.
Will you agree for it? No Because:
Surah 4:163 and Surah 21:7 says Muhammad sahab is sent by the same God who sent Prophet Abraham, Isaac, Jacob or Prophet Moses.
So the issue comes to the fore is: Is the God who spoke to Muhammad sahab same as the God of the earlier Biblical prophets?
Let us consider some general points and then go to specific points to the divinity of LORD Jesus and the messengerhood of Muhammad sahab.
Point 2: When Jesus says God is one, does it mean that Jesus is not God? < /span>
Jesus does not mean it. But Bro. Imran assumes it.
I was reading Bro. Imran’s book “Calling to Islam”. He quotes Mark 12:29 where Jesus says “Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God the Lord is one” and argues that Jesus denied his divinity.
When Jesus says God the LORD is one, we must ask in what sense God is one. Why? Because:
In Matthew 19:5, Jesus says Adam and Eve are one.
Here the word one is not used to refer to one personal existence or numerical oneness. Let me illustrate it:
If I say, we are all one humanity; it means we have one human nature.
But how many genders are there in that one humanity? Two.
How many persons are there in that one humanity? Many.
In the same way God is one in nature and three in persons.
Let us ask Jesus to explain it. Let not Bro. Imran or Bro. Jerry explain it.
Bro. Imran quoted Mark 12:29 but he ignored Mark 12: 35-37-the same chapter- where Jesus quotes Prophet David from Psalm 110: 1.
Prophet David speaks about Messiah in Psalms 110:1 and says “Yehovah said to My Adonai, sit at my right hand.”
Who is this Adonai? Let us read Prophet David to know rather than coming up with our conclusions. In Psalm 16:2 Prophet David said “I said to Yehovah, you are my Adonai”. So Yehovah is Prophet David’s Adonai. In other words, Prophet David is saying Yehovah said to My Yehovah.
How many Yehovah are there? Two. At least two. Who is the second Yehovah? According to Prophet David, it is Christ. This is the meaning that Jesus Christ himself established.
Today I will be defending the meaning Jesus established – that Christ is the second person in the Triune God Yehovah.
In Surah 5:72-73, if Muhammad sahab denied Jesus being God, then our conclusion should be Yehovah of the Prophet David is different from Allah of Muhammad sahab.
Point 3: In John 17: 3 when Jesus calls Father as the Only true God, did Jesus mean he is not God?
Yes according to Bro. Imran who stops at John 17: 3. No if you continue reading to John 17: 5. Just two more verses. We will discuss these verses in the course of presentation.
As of now, let me tell Bro. Imran:
The only true God can be used for Father, Son and Holy Spirit. For example Jesus is called as the True God in 1 John 5:20 and as the only God in Jude 1:4.
Point 4: Can God become man?
No according to the Quran. Yes according to the Holy Bible and Ahadiths.
Surah 6:103 and Surah 112:4 reads "And there is none like unto Him."
Based on these verses Islamic scholars say Allah cannot become man because nothing is comparable to Him.
Just for your record: In Surah 24:35 Allah’s is compared to earthly light and sun.
Point for today’s topic is Allah cannot become man.
But the Holy Bible says:
In Genesis 1:26 “God created man in His own image.”
If God can create man in his own image, then He can also become man because man is in His image.
It is interesting to note that Hadith agrees with the Holy Bible.
Sahih B. Vol 8:246 and Sahih Muslim Hadiths No. 6809 and 6325 say Allah created Adam in his image
Bro. Imran, it is for you to explain these.
Point 5: If God becomes man, can he be divine and human at the same time?
No according to the IREF website. Yes according to the
IREF website says God becoming man is like a brilliant teacher loosing his memory. In other words, divine and human nature cannot coexist. This is a false reasoning.
Can a bush burn with fire and yet remain unconsumed by the fire? Naturally no. Supernaturally yes.
In Exodus 3:2, Prophet Moses saw a bush burning with fire and yet remaining unconsumed by the same. Interestingly, Quran agrees with it in Surah 20:9-14, and Surah 27: 7-9.
So can divine become human and yet remain divine? Naturally no. Supernaturally yes.
In John 4:6-7 Jesus in his humanity felt thirsty. And in the same chapter John 4:10, 13-14 Jesus in his divinity offers living spiritual water which will quench your spiritual thirst forever. Two natures together, divine and human.
Bro. Imran, listen to this carefully- if you come and say about the humanity of Jesus, it will not disprove the divinity of Jesus. You will have to refute what I am going to say.
Can divine become human and yet remain divine? Supernaturally yes.
Let me give you another reason.
Point 6: Can God be both invisible and visible?
Yes according to the Holy Bible. Yes according to Quran too.
The Holy Bible says in (Exodus 24:10-17, Exodus 33:40) that God is visible and invisible. This is supernatural.
Quran which came later agrees with the Holy Bible and says:
Surah 57:3 that Allah is both visible and invisible.
Now my question to Bro. Imran how do you explain this?
Now, bro. Imran can genuinely have a question, can God eat?That is my next point.
Point 7: If God wishes to eat, can he eat?
No according to the Quran. Yes according to the Holy Bible.
In Surah 5:75, God cannot eat.
But the Holy Bible in Gen 18 when God takes the form of a man, He can eat.
In Genesis 18: 2, three men came to Prophet Abraham. (THREE MEN).
In Genesis 18: 8, these three MEN ATE (ATE FOOD).
In Genesis 18: 17, one of the MEN who ATE FOOD identifies himself as Yehovah God and speaks with Abraham about destroying Sodom and Gomorrah.
In Genesis 19:24 we read the LORD (Yehovah) who was on the earth rained brimstone and fire on Sodom and Gomorrah from the LORD (Yehovah) who was in the heavens.
Yehovah in the form of man can eat. And Yehovah is more than one person in this passage.
If Muhammad sahab denies that God can eat then our conclusion should be the god who sent Muhammad sahab is not the God who sent Prophet Abraham.
Bro. Imran in one of his previous debates argued if God eats, he has to go for nature calls also. His argument is nothing but a logical fallacy of applying natural laws to supernatural and insisting that supernatural must follow natural laws.
For example, according to Surah 57:4 and Surah 69:17 Allah sits on a throne carried by eight angels.
Is Allah dependent upon the throne?
Bro. Imran, before Allah was sitting on the throne, was he standing? If he was standing, where was he standing?
We can ask numerous questions if we apply natural laws to supernatural.
If God wishes to eat in the form of a man, He can eat.
Now let us come to the most popular question on this subject.
Point 8: Where did Jesus say I am God and worship me?
Bro. Imran has rai
sed this question in his book, under the title “who can answer these questions from the Bible?” It is very easy to answer.
First let us have the complete question.
In Surah 5:116-117 Allah asks Jesus, did thou say to mankind “worship me and my mother as gods in derogation to Allah?”
So the complete question is: did Jesus say “worship me and my mother as gods”?
Bro. Imran will not quote the Quran completely as he himself knows that the question is wrong.
The trinity that is revealed by the Holy Spirit to Prophet David (Psalms 110:1) confirmed by Jesus Matt 22:41-46; 28:19-20 and explained by the inspired Apostle in 2 Corinth 13:13 does not include Allah of the Quran and Mary. Two out of three persons in Quranic trinity are wrong.
So the question is: Human beings can have misunderstanding. Muhammad sahab was a human being. But how can we say all-knowing God misunderstood the doctrine of Trinity. True God never misunderstands.
Now let us read what Jesus said and did:
In Matthew 12: 6-8 Jesus said he is greater than the temple of God. Remember temple of God was built on the very model that is in heaven. It is where Yehovah’s mighty presence dwelt. Who can say that he is greater than that temple unless he is God himself?
Am I making my own reasons? No.
The very next verses Jesus says. Jesus gives the reason why he is greater than the temple of God.
Jesus said in the next verse “For the Son of Man is the LORD of Sabbath. In Leviticus 23:3, we know that Yehovah is the LORD of Sabbath. Unless Jesus is God, how can he say he is the LORD of Sabbath, he is the Yehovah God himself?
So, the reason that Jesus gave that He is greater than the temple is that he is the LORD of Sabbath. That is the reason Jesus himself gave.
In Matthew 21: 16, Jesus accepted worship as Yehovah God in the temple of God. Religious leaders objected and asked Jesus to stop people from doing it. But Jesus endorsed it by quoting Ps 8:1-2 which speaks about praises meant only for Yehovah and applied to himself. If Jesus does not have the identity with Yehovah God himself, how can he apply this verse to himself?
In Revelation 21: 6, 7, listen to this carefully, the one who is the alpha and omega speaks. And this Alpha and Omega identifies himself as Jesus in Revelation 22:13 & 16.
This Alpha and Omega says in Revelation 21:7."He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be my son" Did Jesus say that He is God? Yes, he said it in Revelation 21:7.
If Muhammad sahib denies it, in Surah 5:116-117 then the problem is:
Usually Islamic preachers quote John 14: 16 and say that one is who promised by Jesus is Muhammad sahab. It cannot be.
Because in John 14:26 Jesus said that the Holy Spirit will come and confirm the words of Jesus and not contradict it.
However Muhammad sahab contradicted it. Therefore Muhammad sahab cannot be.
Now, Bro. Imran you may say many are called as gods and sons of God in the Bible (Psalms 82:6). But as Psalms 82:7 explains it and Galatians 4:8 say they are not gods by nature.
Did Jesus have the exact nature of God? That is why in John 1:14 Jesus is called as the monogenes of the Father which can be translated as the only begotten, the only one, or one of its kind.
Is Jesus the only one who is called as Son of God and has the exact nature of God? Yes. Let us see the whether Jesus has the exact nature of God or not.
Point 9: Is Jesus say that he is the eternally existing God?
Yes according Prophet Isaiah. Yes according to LORD Jesus. No according to Muhammad sahab.
Isaiah 9:6 says the child who is born, the son who is given is the Mighty God. According to Isaiah 10:21 Yehovah is the mighty God. Do not bring your own explanations.
Bro. Imran listen carefully, otherwise you might come and say Jesus is not saying what I am going to prove but saying that God chose Jesus before the foundations of the world as believers are chosen in (Jeremiah 1: 5 and Ephesians 1:4). You may say what you want but the fact is Jesus contradicts you.
In John 17:5 Jesus says, listen to this- “And now, o Father, glorify me together with yourself, with the glory which I had with you before the world was."
Further, in John 6:38 Jesus again said: I have come down from heaven.
In John 6:62 Jesus once asked "Then what if you were to see the Son of Man ascending TO WHERE HE WAS BEFORE?"
In John 8: 58 Jesus says “your father Abraham rejoiced to see My day and he saw it and was glad. Then the Jews asked him, “you are not yet fifty years old and have you seen Abraham?” In other words, how can Jesus exist before Prophet Abraham? Jesus answered them “Most assuredly, I say to you, before Abraham was I AM”.
And we have already seen the occasion when did Prophet Abraham met Jesus.
In Surah 3:59 Muhammad sahab says that Jesus is created. Then our conclusion should be that Allah of the Quran who sent Muhammad sahab is different from Yehovah of the Biblical prophets.
Is Allah who sent Muhammad sahab eternal?
IREF website says Allah has literal face, hands and legs. I have no problem with it.
But my question is: In Surah 28:88 says all things perish, except Allah’s Face. This is further stated in Surah. 55:26-27. If only Allah’s face exist, then Allah’s hands and legs are not eternal.
Since the God of the Biblical prophets is eternal, Muhammad sahab cannot be sent by the same God who sent the Biblical prophets.
Point 10: Did Jesus say He is the All-Powerful God?
No according to Islamic preachers. Yes according to Jesus.
Usually Dawwah preachers quote John 5:19 and John 5:30 which Imran also has quoted in his book.
In John 5:19 Jesus says “Most assuredly I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself but what He sees the Father do. “ Dawwah preachers stop at this. But the verse continues. FOR WHATEVER HE DOES, THE SON ALSO DOES in LIKE MANNER.”
Who can say that I can do everything that God does unless He is God himself? When Jesus says Son can do nothing of himself, he was emphasizing the unity between Father and Son.
In fact, this perfect unity between Jesus and Holy Spirit is emphasized when Jesus said “but if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come to you.”
In John 10:28 Jesus showed that he is the all powerful God-Jesus says I give unto them eternal life. Only God has that Power.
Question: In contrast to Jesus who offers eternal life, Muhammad sahab in Surah S. 46:9 said NOR DO I KNOW WHAT WILL BE DONE WITH ME OR WITH YOU. Muhammad sahab cannot offer salvation is confirmed in Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 5, Number 266, Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 4, Number 16).
Bro. Imran please explain this?
(Sakshi comment: Bro. Imran came and told in the question and answer session that every prophet can offer eternal life. Bro. Imran did not cite a single verse. What is the value of an empty claim?)
Point 11: Did Jesus say that He is everywhere who is omnipresent God?
Yes according to Jesus.
In Matthew 18: 20, Jesus says wherever two or three gathers in my name, there I am with them.
In Matthew 28:20 Jesus says I am with you always.
First for Jesus Christ to know wherever two or three gathers in the whole world in His name, He must be all-knowing. To be everywhere at the same time, He must be omnipresent.
Question: IREF website says Allah is not omnipresent or everywhere.
Then how can we say that God who sent Muhammad sahab is the same God who sent earlier Biblical Prophets. Because according to Ps 139:7-12, Yehovah is omnipresent.