Enmity of the Pharisees:
Jesus’ emphasis on moral sincerity rather and relaxation in strict adherence to religious ritual incurred the enmity of the Pharisees (Jewish dominant religious party of scholars and priests), who feared that his teachings might lead to disregard for the authority of the Law, or Torah. Others feared that Jesus’ activities and followers might prejudice the Roman authorities against any restoration of the Davidic monarchy. Despite this growing opposition, Jesus’ popularity increased, especially among social outcasts and the oppressed, which was taken as a threat to their domination and authority by the community of priests.
Conspiracy to Kill Jesus Christ & Ascent:
Jesus continued preaching and performed numerous miracles, particularly the raising of Lazarus in Bethany (John;11:1-44). The most significant moment in Jesus’ public ministry, however, was Simon Peter’s realization at Caesarea Philippi that Jesus was the Christ (Matthew;16:16; Mark;8:29; Luke;9:20). During final days, he disputed with the chief priests, the scribes, the Pharisees, and the Sadducees questions about his authority, tribute to Caesar, and the resurrection. Meanwhile, in Jerusalem, the priests and scribes, concerned that Jesus’ activities would turn the Romans against them and the Jewish people (John;11:48), conspired with Judas Iscariot, one of his disciples, to arrest and kill Jesus by stealth, “for they feared the people” (Luke;22:2, John;11:47-53) places the conspiracy before Jesus’ triumphal entry into Jerusalem. A crowd led by Judas Iscariot was sent by the religious authorities to arrest him in Gethsemane. The supreme council of the Jews, the Sanhedrin condemned Jesus to death for false accusation of blasphemy in 30 C.E. Even according to Christians the alleged crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus is a mystery, with divergent views with in the disciples and the followers of Jesus.
Neither Killed Nor Crucified:
Jesus Christ was neither killed nor was he crucified, as alleged by the Christians and the Jews, but he was raised up to God. It has been clarified by God: “And (then Children of Israel) plotted and planned and God too planned and the best of planners is God. Behold! God said: “O Jesus! I will take thee and raise thee to Myself and clear thee (of the falsehoods) of those who blaspheme; I will make those who follow thee superior to those who reject Faith to the Day of Resurrection; then shall ye all return unto Me and I will judge between you of the matters wherein ye dispute.(Qur’an;3:54-55);“That they said (in boast) “We killed Christ Jesus the son of Mary the Apostle of God”; but they killed him not nor crucified him but so it was made to appear to them and those who differ therein are full of doubts with no (certain) knowledge but only conjecture to follow for of a surety they killed him not. Nay God raised him up unto Himself; and God is Exalted in Power Wise. And there is none of the People of the Book but must believe in him before his death (As only as a Messenger of God and a human being); and on the Day of Judgment He (Jesus) will be a witness against them (Qur’an;4:157,158,159). Ahmed Deedat, an authority on Bible and Christianity in his book ‘CRUCIFIXION Or Cruci-Fiction’ has deliberated on this aspect through references and internal evidence from Bible, summary of salient points is mentioned later.
Crucifixion Refuted in ‘Gospel of Jesus’:
Barnabas, the close disciple of Jesus, writes: “..Then God seeing danger of his servant, commanded Gabriel, Michael, Rafael and Uriel, his ministers, to take Jesus out of the world. The holy angels came and took Jesus out by the window that looketh toward the South…” (Barnabas:215)
“Judas truly did nothing else but cry out: ‘God, why hast thou forsaken me, seeing the malefactor hath escaped and I die unjustly?’ Verily I say that the voice, the face, and the person of Judas were so alike to Jesus, that his disciples and believers entirely believed that he was Jesus; wherefore some departed from the doctrine of Jesus; believing that Jesus had been a false prophet, and that by art magic he had done the miracles which he did: for Jesus had said that he should not die till near the end of the world; for that at that time he should be taken away from the world.” (Barnabas:217)
“…And though I have been innocent in the world, since men have called me “God,” and “Son of God,” God, in order that I be not mocked of the demons on the day of judgment, hath willed that I be mocked of men in this world by the death of Judas, making all men to believe that I died upon the cross. And this mocking shall continue until the advent of Mohammed, the messenger of God, who, when he shall come, shall reveal this deception to those who believe in God’s law.”(Barnabas:220)
“….Wherefore, when the messenger of God shall come, he shall come to cleanse away all wherewith the ungodly have contaminated my book.” (Barnabas:124)
Return to this World:
Jesus was raised up alive to God, he will return before end of the world to prove that he was only a messenger of God, nothing more. He will then establish the Kingdom of God, all submitting to the will of God (Islam) believing him as only as a Messenger of God and a human being. The life and teachings of Jesus were often matters for dispute and varying interpretations in the Christian history. Early in the life of the church, for example, it became necessary to regularize beliefs about Jesus and his role, to aid in conversion and to answer those Christians who adopted views unacceptable to church leaders. The concepts of Christology, Incarnation, Trinity, and Original Sin are concoction, interpolation and misinterpretations.
Similarity in Birth of Jesus and Adam:
In brief the birth of Jesus resemble in a way with birth of Adam. Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) and his mother Marry are Signs of God. Jesus (peace be upon him) the son of Mary, never claimed divinity, or said, “I am God” or that, “worship me”. He was just a Messenger of God, who was sent to guide his nation, with miracles which he performed with the will of God. He was a sign of God who preached the worship one God, he confirmed the Torah and made lawful some of that which was forbidden to the children of Israel. Once Children of Israel tried to kill him, God saved him and raised him up unto Himself, he is still living in heaven, will reappear before the Final Day, when the world will be purified of sin and unbelief.
The Apostolic Mission in Scriptures:
The Apostolic mission of Jesus Christ is highlighted in scriptures, God says: “And We caused Jesus, the son of Mary, to follow in the footsteps of those (earlier prophets), confirming the truth of what ever there still remained of the Torah; and We bestowed on him the Gospel wherein there was guidance and a light, confirming the truth of whatever there still remained of the Torah, and as a guidance and admonition unto the God conscious.” (Qur’an; 5:46);“Surely, have sent to every nation a messenger (saying): ‘Worship God and avoid false gods.”(Qur’an;16:36). Jesus (peace be upon him) clearly announced the nature of his mission that he was sent by God to confirm the then existing Law. This is clearly evident in the statements attributed to Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) in the Gospel of Mathew:” Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfill them. For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the law until all is accomplished. Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”(Mathew;5:17-20).
The Bible mentions the prophetic nature of Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) task:”… and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.” (John;14:24). “And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Prophet Jesus Christ, whom thou has sent.”(John;17:3). Thus the essence of the message of Jesus was that only God deserves to be worshipped and that the worship of anyone or anything besides God or along with God is false. Jesus said: ‘It is written, You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve.’”(Luke;4:8). Jesus not only called people to this message but he also practically demonstrated it for them by bowing down in prayer and worshipping God himself. In Mark;14:32, it is stated: “And they went to a place which was called Gethsemane; and he (Jesus) said to his disciples, ‘Sit here, while I pray.’ ”And in Luke; 5:16, “But he withdrew to the wilderness and prayed.”
Gospel and Qur’an are unanimous on the apostolic mission of Jesus (peace be upon him): “Ye men of Israel, hear these words; Jesus of Nazareth, a man approved of God among you by miracles and wonders and signs, which God did by him in the midst of you, as ye yourselves also know.”(Acts;2:22). The God says in Qur’an: “The Messiah, son of Mary, was no other than a messenger, messengers (the like of whom) had passed away before him. And his mother was a saintly woman. And they both used to eat (earthly) food. See how we make the revelations clear for them, and see how they are turned away!”(Qur’an;5:75). “He was no more than a servant: We granted Our favor to him (miracles, wonders and signs) and We made him an example to the Children of Israel.” (Qur’an;43:59). Paul, the self appointed 13th disciple of Jesus, deviated from the prophetic mission of Jesus, his teachings and systematically cancelled the Laws. He never learned any thing from Jesus directly, but claimed to get the revelation (Galatians;1:12), which no one could confirm or deny. In his letter to the Romans, he stated, “But now we are discharged from the law, dead to that which held us captive, so that we serve not under the old written code but in the new life of the Spirit.” (Romans; 7:6).
Second Coming of Jesus Christ:
Jesus was a sign of God who preached to worship one God. He was not killed but God raised him up unto Himself. Muslims believe that Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) will appear before the Final Day, after the coming of the Mahdi (rightly guided one), when the world will be purified of sin and unbelief. He will rule the world as just ruler. There will be a final death before the final Resurrection on the Day of Judgement, but all would have believed in the faith of Islam before that final death. Narrated by Abu Hurayrah: “The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: There is no prophet between me and him, that is, Jesus (peace be upon him). He will descent (to the earth). When you see him, recognize him: a man of medium height, reddish fair, wearing two light yellow garments, looking as if drops were falling down from his head though it will not be wet. He will fight the people for the cause of Islam. He will break the cross, kill swine, and abolish jizyah (poll tax on non Muslims). God will perish all religions except Islam. He will destroy the imposter (Antichrist) and will live on the earth for forty years and then he will die. The Muslims will pray over him”. (Sunan of Abu-Dawud, Hadith: 2025).
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