Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Questions from a Christian Son to His Muslim Father: Question #2

Written below is the response that my son, Bashiruddin Mahmud, gave concerning my answer to his question #1.

Bashiruddin replied, “Thank you. That was an excellent, well thought out, well articulated, and enlightening response to my question. I specifically appreciated the clarification on Jihad (and the different types) in relation on the misconception on what it means in western society which is "Holy War". I can definitely sympathize with the view of many Middle Eastern Muslims on the United States. I do not believe that I see eye to eye on the issue of Israel however. I appreciate the historical context you provided for each interpretation. I have to say I don't remember much about Islam from my childhood but I do remember that peace seemed to resonate in every Islamic community I was exposed to. I don't remember any hostility or intolerance for any individual persons, religion, etc”.

Within your answer to [my] question #1 you quoted this verse: "Say, `We believe in ALLAH and that which has been revealed to us, and that which was revealed to Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac and Jacob and the Tribes, and in that which was given to Moses and Jesus and other Prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them and to HIM we submit.’" (Qur’an 3:85)

Question: This verse seems to say that the God of the Bible and Allah are one and the same. Would you agree with that statement?

Answer: I could and do agree that the god of Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Jesus and all other Prophets (peace be on them) are the same. The God Who has manifested Himself to all the Prophets, and appeared to Moses on Mount Sinai and appeared to Jesus on Mount Seir and appeared to the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be on all of them), on Mount Paran, is the same Mighty and Holy God.

“Allah” is the proper name for the one God and has been around in pre-Islamic times. One cannot say that the god for Muslims is different from the God for the Jews or the Christians. Muslims do not hold the belief that the God, who sent down messengers before the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw), was any different than the God who sent the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw) and the Qur’an. The Holy Qur’an states, “And say, ‘We believe in that which has been revealed to us and that which has been revealed to you; and our God and your God is one; and to Him we submit.’” (29:47)

The above verse clearly states that we all worship the same God. Even in Arab countries today, ‘Allah’ is used by the Christians and Jews to refer to God. Even in the Bible, God is translated as "Allah".

I hope this answer will satisfy your 2nd question.

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