Claims of Maharishi Dayananda Saraswati
The Christian religion is not the only one that is based on the Bible, there are others as well, such as the Jewish religion. The reason, why we have only discussed Christianity (and omitted Judaism, etc.) in the thirteenth Chapter is that now-a-days it takes the first place among all religions founded on the Bible whilst the Jewish religion and the like are left in the background hence it may be understood that our criticism on the Bible will equally hold good in the case of Judaism, etc., the allied religions which are of secondary importance compared with Christianity which is of primary importance.
Our criticism is only directed against the Bible which is believed in by the Christians and Jews alike and upon which their respective religions are founded. There are many Bhasha and Sanskrit translations of the Bible by well-known Missionaries. The perusal of these has given rise to many doubts in our mind. Some of them we have set forth in this chapter for the consideration of all (thinking people). Our sole aim in writing this chapter is to further the cause of truth and eradicate error, and not to injure the feelings of others or do them harm or bring false charges against them.
My Observation: Of all the religious scriptures in the world, the Holy Bible has been subjected to most the intense scrutiny and harshest criticisms. So your attempt is neither the first nor the last in this direction. However, the Holy Bible when properly studied was sufficient to answer those critics. In front of those Biblical truths, the self-claimed wise critics were proved to foolish and hid themselves in shame.
Rather than being hurt, the believer could say: “The entirety of Your word is truth, and every one of Your righteous judgments endures forever. Princes persecute me without a cause, but my heart stands in awe of Your word” (Psalms 119:160-161).
No other religious scripture in the world could make that claims. They all had to admit that either some of the teachings in them are corrupted or abrogated.
Those who came thus to critique the Holy Bible were proved to be in error and you are not going to be different.
After going through this chapter all our readers will know what kind of book (the Bible) is, and what doctrines it teaches. It (the discussion of Christianity in this chapter) will also make it easy for all men to examine the tenets of Christianity and make a comparative study of it. It will further augment the knowledge of men concerning religion and herby make it easy for them to discriminate between right and wrong, between desirable conduct and undesirable conduct; and to embrace truth and practice virtue, to reject error and shun vice. It behoves all men to carefully study the (sacred) books of all religions before they publish their opinions for or against them. If a person be illiterate, he could hear them being read because just as a man by reading becomes a scholar, likewise by hearing others read he can become what is called bahustruta (one who has heard much). Though the latter may not be able to explain anything to others, yet he can understand it himself. Those who are jaundiced can neither see their own merits and demerits nor those of others. The soul of man possesses the capacity for ascertaining truth. A man can decide whether what he has heard or read is right or wrong.
Response: After going through this article, the readers can surely what ignorance this ‘Hindu reformer’ was spreading about Christian faith and hope that every reader will be able to make a choice between those.
No subject can be mutually discussed if both parties are not well-acquainted with (the teachings of) each other's religions. The ignorant are very apt to fall into an abyss of superstition and error. It is in order to save them from such a fate that we have firefly discussed all the prevalent religions. The truth or error of other subjects (that have been discussed in this book) can be inferred. All that is true and (therefore) worthy of acceptance to all is alike in all religions. Differences arise over doctrines which are false or even when one party (in a discussion) is right, while the other wrong, but should both parties discuss a subject with the sole desire of ascertaining truth they can succeed in it.
Now we place our criticism of Christianity in the thirteenth chapter before all (our readers). They can form their own opinions about it. We hope these few words will suffice to the seekers of truth.
Now we shall discuss the Christian religion in order to make it clear to all whether this religion is free from faults and its sacred book called the Bible is the Word of God or not. We shall first deal with the Old Testament.