(Draft Article) Objection: “Why can’t Muslims accept that God’s Word became flesh?”

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By MuslimAnswers.net Team

بِسْمِ اللَّـهِ الرَّحْمَـٰنِ الرَّحِيم

A certain Christian asked: “Since the Muslims accept that the Eternal and Beginningless Speech of Allah became a book (i.e. the Qur’an), why are they so stuck on not accepting that the Eternal Word of God became flesh in the person of Jesus Christ?”

The answer begins by immediately noting that the claim of the Christian regarding the Muslim belief is flatly wrong. No Muslim says that the “Eternal Speech of Allah” literally became a book – neither the Tawra, nor the Injeel, nor the Qur’an. In fact, whoever believes in such an idea is not a Muslim at all.

Rather, the Muslim says that the recited Qur’an in its letters, words, and sounds, point out [in Arabic ‘dalla ‘ala’] the Beginningless Speech of Allah, without the “Beginningless Speech of Allah” becoming incarnate in the books or on the tongues of the reciters.

We say that the confusion (or sometimes the malicious intent) may arise due to the linguistic usage of the term “Speech of Allah” to refer to the Qur’an and other revealed books, and the equating of this linguistic usage with the strict technical meaning.

In order to establish the Muslim understanding on this issue, we can further another very pertinent example: When a person utters the word “Allah” this word does not become the Divine Being “Allah” in His Essence, but rather it is understood that this utterance is pointing towards the Divine Being. Reciprocally, the Divine Being “Allah” is His Essence does not become the word “Allah” on the tongue of the one who mentions and remembers his Lord.

Of course, there is a wide gulf between the Christian and Muslim conception of Allah (or the Divine Being), since the Christian insists that God is one ousia (substance or being) existing in three distinct hypostases (subsistences), and this is something which the Muslim rejects outright, and says that its impossibility is of the absolute type, relating to the very nature of Divinity.

Even though Christians may say that we have misunderstood their religion, the truth is that they claim that multiple “persons” occupy the status of Divinity in full – thus the usage of the term “hypostasis” [subsistence, as in the subsistence of a being]. So according to this paradigm, the “Word of God” is one of these “hypostasis” which had the ability incarnate himself in the body of a man.

The Muslim would immediately point out that even without incarnation, the very idea of one being existing in different “persons” or “hypostasis” is simply outside the realm of possibilities and is to be rejected outright. The Muslim would also say that for any set of multiple Beings occupying their own spatial coordinates [such as what the Christians claim about Jesus (Alayhi Salaam) during his earthly life, or of the “Holy Spirit” in certain instances, such as what is alleged concerning his descent during Jesus’ “Baptism” or during the incident of “Pentecost”] would itself militate against the idea that any of the beings referred to (Jesus (Alayhi Salaam) or the “Holy Spirit”) could possibly be Divine, due to the compelling need of regulatory specification in such cases. (Much more is there that can be discussed about this matter, but such matters will be discussed in other articles and works).

Thus, we see that the Christian objection concerning the Qur’an and its relationship with the “Beginningless Speech of Allah” is invalid, and that it masks the fundamental disagreement between the Islamic and Christian faiths in their views on Divinity.  

   

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6 thoughts on “(Draft Article) Objection: “Why can’t Muslims accept that God’s Word became flesh?”

  1. salaam

    there is a story in the gospel of mark about an ill lady who came behind jesus and took dynamin/power from jesus without jesus’ permission and knowledge.
    jesus just like normal human beings said, “who touched me,” then he “looked around to see…”
    as human beings we look around because our vision cannot encompass everything .
    what this means is that the christian god cannot MAINTAIN his omniscience in FINITE enviroment. his omnicience keeps on switching on/off. so this means that finite enviroment prevents 2nd member of trinity mind/brain/soul from encompassing everything. they always go on about and how it is possible for god to become LIMITED AND that the mind/brain/soul DIDN’T experience what the flesh did, but in the story mentioned above it seems like the mind/brain/soul of jesus’ WAS limited.
    i would appreciate if you can add anything else to this.

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    • Salam Alaykum,

      From the little that I can make of this situation, even without considering the specific story, if they say that there is a partition between the ‘brain of God’ and the ‘flesh of God’, then this is already a statement maintaining that ‘God’ was partitioned and that ‘He’ was in need of a specifier/partitioner; from this angle we can already reject the Christian concept even without getting into the specifics.

      As far as the specifics, the most ‘robust’ explanation I have heard is that God was still the Creator and Arranger even when He was supposedly in a deficient human body, but this is simply a retelling of their initial position, without adding any new insights into the matter.

      If there really some serious explanation they are trying to give for these sorts of incidents – beyond simply rephrasing what their belief already is – then these can be presented here. If they can be answered in a simple way then well and good, and if not then I can try to ask any Shaykh or ‘Aalim about it whenever possible.

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      • what does islam say about Allahs attributes. when we say He has power over creation what do we mean ? it doesn’t mean that His power ENTERS creation and becomes something, right?

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      • Salam Alaykum,

        From what is written in the works of scholars, Allah’s Power is not a ‘Being’ or ‘Entity’, but is an ‘Attribute of Meaning’. This is a big difference between us and the Christians, since they claim hypostatization of God’s Attributes, and every other heresy that comes from this.

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  2. “jesus just like normal human beings said, “who touched me,” then he “looked around to see…”
    as human beings we look around because our vision cannot encompass everything .
    what this means is that the christian god cannot MAINTAIN his omniscience in FINITE enviroment. his omnicience keeps on switching on/off. so this means that finite enviroment prevents 2nd member of trinity mind/brain/soul from encompassing everything. they always go on about and how it is possible for god to become LIMITED AND that the mind/brain/soul DIDN’T experience what the flesh did, but in the story mentioned above it seems like the mind/brain/soul of jesus’ WAS limited.”

    if god is ALL KNOWING and at the same time had to “look around to SEE…,” then we need to know who is god fooling? himself? is he simply acting a role on stage? if they believe that god did not experience what it is to look around and see and assume that at the same time god was looking around and seeing his sight encompassed everything ,then what did god participate in? if divine unlimited divine nature and limited and created human nature do not mix, then god did not experience the organs he made for himself.

    god is PERFECT in his vision and at the same time needs to look around to see?

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  3. Simplest answer,the writer of any book does not become the Book himself.If anyone thinks so,its non sense.The concept of God’s transformation into minor things is just like insulting Him.

    Like

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