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Don Stewart :: Is the God of Islam the Same as the Biblical God?

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Is the God of Islam the Same as the Biblical God?

Islam – Question 9

There are those who assume that Allah, the God of Islam, is just another name for Yahweh or Jehovah, the God of the Bible. However, it is clear that the God of Islam is not the same God as revealed in Scripture. This can be seen in two distinct areas.

First, the God of the Bible and the God of Islam have different attributes or characteristics. Second, the God of Scripture is a Trinity while the God of Islam is not.

1. The God of the Bible and the God of Islam Have Different Attributes

While the Bible and the Quran attribute similar powers are attributed to Yahweh and Allah, they are certainly not the same God. This can be seen in a number of ways.

Allah Is Not a God of Love Yahweh Is a God of Love

Muslims recite ninety-nine names of God, going three times through a prayer strand with thirty-three beads on it. Christians can agree with Muslims on almost every one of these attributes of God. The fourth attribute is that He is the Holy One, and the forty-seventh is that He is “the Loving One.” However, holiness and love are not driving passions in many Muslims’ understanding of God.

This is seen in a contrast between the God of Scripture and the God of Islam. Islam emphasizes Allah’s absolute power and control. Muslims submit to its many rules. Yet they cannot have any assurance whatsoever about their standing before God, that is not until Judgment Day. Islam teaches that God is that is aloof in his majestic glory. He is a God who is detached from all else.

In contrast to this, the Bible depicts God a personal being whose love and compassion toward humanity was shone in the coming of Jesus Christ. The loving God showed His love for this world by sending His Son.

For example, the Bible speaks of God’s love for the entire world. In the most famous verse of the Bible we read the following.

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life (John 3:16 NKJV)

God’s love for the world was demonstrated in sending the Messiah, the Christ.

God is also specifically called “love.”

God is love. (1 John 4:8b KJV)

The God of the Bible is a God of love.

Yahweh Never Lies: Does Allah Deceive?

It has been observed that in three different places the Quran seems to teach that Allah actually intentionally deceives people. They are as follows.

And they planned and Allah (also) planned and Allah is the best of planners. (Surah 3:54)

Elsewhere it says,

And when those who disbelieved devised plans against you that they might confine you or slay you or drive you away; and they devised plans and Allah too had arranged a plan; and Allah is the best of planners. (Surah 8:30)

We also read the following in the Quran.

And when we make people taste of mercy after an affliction touches them, lo! they devise plans against Our communication. Say: Allah is quicker to plan; surely Our messengers write down what you plan. (Surah 10:21)

Note that the English translations of these verses use words like “plan,” or “the best planner” when speaking of Allah. However, it has been argued that the Arabic word actually means “deceives.” If this is the case, then the Quran teaches that Allah is a God of deception.

This is in contrast to the God of the Bible who does not lie and who cannot lie. Paul wrote the following truth to Titus.

This truth gives them the confidence of eternal life, which God promised them before the world began—and he cannot lie. (Titus 1:2 NLT)

God cannot, and does not, lie. This is not part of His nature.

It says in the Book of Hebrews we are told the same thing. Indeed, Scripture says that there are two unchangeable things about God; His promise and His oath. Consequently, it is not possible for Him to lie.

So God has given us both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can take new courage, for we can hold on to his promise with confidence. (Hebrews 6:18 NLT)

Again, the God of the Bible is the God of truth.

2. The God of Islam and the God of the Bible Have a Different Nature: Unitarianism versus Trinitarianism

The Quran portrays a different god than that of Christianity. The first duty of a Muslim is to publicly recite the Shahadah. It is as follows.

There is no God but Allah and Muhammad is his apostle.

This statement of faith is primary for the Muslim. Allah alone is God. Within his nature there is only one divine person. Islam rejects the Trinity and the New Testament teaching that Jesus Christ is the eternal God. They consider Him only a prophet. The Quran says,

Jesus Christ, the son of Mary was no more than an apostle of God (Surah 19:92).

In another place, it says,

And behold, God will say; “O Jesus the Son of Mary! Did you say unto men, ‘Worship me and my mother as gods in derogation of God?’” (Surah 5:119)

The Quran assumed that the Trinity consisted of God the Father, God the Son Jesus, and Jesus’ mother Mariam (Mary).

In no uncertain terms, Islam rejects the Trinity. The Quran says,

They do blaspheme who say: God is one of three in a Trinity, for there is no God except One God. (5:76)

The Quran, therefore, contains direct attacks against the doctrine of the Trinity.

The Quran itself declares the following.

Certainly they disbelieve who say: Surely Allah is the third (person) of the three; and there is no god but the one God, and if they desist not from what they say, a painful chastisement shall befall those among them who disbelieve. (Surah 5:73)

The following statement could not be clearer; Allah does not have a son.

O followers of the Book! do not exceed the limits in your religion, and do not speak lies against Allah, but speak the truth; the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary is only an apostle of Allah and his Word which he communicated to Mary and a spirit from him; believe therefore in Allah and his apostles, and say not, Three. Desist, it is better for you; Allah is only one God; far be It from his glory that he should have a son, whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth is his, and Allah is sufficient for a Protector. (Surah 4:171)

The Quran assumes that Christians believe in three gods. Of course, this is blasphemy against Allah the only God who exists.

The Christian Response: The Bible Teaches God Is a Trinity

The Bible teaches that there is one eternal God who has revealed Himself in three eternal Persons, or three centers of consciousness. They are the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. These three Persons are the one God. This is the doctrine of the Trinity.

Unfortunately, there were some Christians who were teaching false ideas of the Trinity in Mecca. One such distortion of the Trinity claimed that God actually has a wife named Mary. God and Mary produced a child whom they named Jesus. This is the sort of distortion of the doctrine of the Trinity that Muhammad was acquainted with. He, along with many others, concluded that Christians believed in three gods; “tri-theists.”

The Importance of the Trinity

The importance of the Trinity doctrine cannot be overestimated. There are a number of reasons as to why this is so.

This is how God has explained Himself. God has revealed Himself in Scripture as a Trinity. Scripture teaches that the one God exists in three eternal Persons, or centers of consciousness. They are God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. This is what the one true God has said about Himself. He is the only God who exists and He exists as a Trinity. This is His revelation to us, His claim. We are obligated to believe it, no doubt it or question it.

The Trinity is an example of the statement “God is love.” For all eternity, there has been love between the three members of the Trinity. Consequently, God has never needed anything or anybody because there was love and communication among the different members of the Trinity.

The conclusion is clear: the god of Islam is not the same God as in Christianity. Therefore, the explanation of God, in at least one of these two faiths, must be wrong.

Either God is a Trinity or He is not. Islam and Christianity cannot both be true at the same time. Indeed, they do not believe in the same in the same God.

Islam Demands Everyone Believe It Is the Same God

There is one final point which we need to emphasize. While it is obvious that Allah, the God of Islam is not the same Yahweh or Jehovah, the God that as revealed in the Bible, Muslims insist that it is so. In fact, Islam not only demands that faithful Muslims believe this it also demands that Jews and Christians believe it also! This is consistent with their belief that the Quran is the divine revelation from Allah which supersedes the Bible.

Since Muslims acknowledge the Scriptures to be the Word of Allah they must, therefore, insist that the same God who has been revealed in the Old and New Testament is the same God as revealed in the Quran.

When the Bible and the Quran differ in their characterizations of God, it is the Quran which always provides the final word since it is Allah’s later revelation to humanity.

Of course, Christians and Jews do not accept this line of argumentation since they do not believe the Quran to be the Word of God or Muhammad to be a prophet of God.

Consequently, the differences between the biblical view of God, and what the Quran teaches, are further evidence that Judaism, Christianity and Islam cannot be harmonized.

Summary – Question 9
Is the God of Islam the Same as the Biblical God?

Christianity and Islam each claim that there is only one God which exists. However, they do not believe in the same God. Indeed, the God of Christianity, as the Bible reveals, and the God of Islam, which the Quran speaks of, are entirely different.

For one thing, Islam believes and teaches about an impersonal God who does not love sinful humanity. He is not someone who can be known on a personal level.

This is in contrast to the God of the Bible who is a personal God. Moreover, the God of the Bible desires to have a personal relationship with each human being. These two conceptions of God could not be more different.

In addition, the nature of Allah, the God of Islam, is different that the God of the Bible. Allah is an absolute unity. In fact, Islam states that God cannot have a “son.”

In contrast, the God of the Bible is a Trinity. He is a compound unity made up of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Thus, at their very basic description of God the two religions are completely different.

Islam not only denies the Trinity, it has an inadequate understanding what the Bible teaches about this all-important subject.

Thus, it is impossible that the God of Islam and the God of Scripture are the same God. One of them does not exist. The evidence is clear that it is the God of Islam which has no genuine existence.

One final point that we should note is that Muslims insist that everyone accept the idea that the God of the Bible is the same God as they worship, Allah. Indeed, they demand that their followers, as well as Christians and Jews, acknowledge Allah as the one true God. This is the logical conclusion of believing that the Bible is the Word of God but the Quran is a later revelation from the same God.

Therefore, the Quran would have to be consulted for the final word concerning the exact nature and characteristics of God.

Christians and Jews reject this claim. In fact, they insist that the differences between the biblical portrayal of God and the portrayal of Allah found in the Quran makes it evident to all that it is not the same God who is revealed in these different “Holy Books.” Somebody has an incorrect concept of God. The evidence leads us to believe that the Bible provides God’s own description of Himself while the Quran gives a picture of a God who goes not exist.

What Do Muslims, Jews, and Christians Have in Common? ← Prior Section
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