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Joined: 08 February 2007
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|Posted: 08 February 2007 at 4:55pm|
once upon a time before the british colonialisme changed islam we were working together for thesame shared goal!!!! Today at the age of the internet lets correct the last century together!!!Today ordinary people can read are educated and can be free to express themself
Joined: 08 February 2007
Online Status: Offline
|Posted: 13 February 2007 at 10:41pm|
MUSLIMS AND JEWS MUST SEEK TRUTH TOGETHER
Let us both, Muslims and Jews, seek Truth together. Only Truth will guide us to righteousness, which will bring peace and blessing for both sides. Let us reflect on the two books which have guided Jews and Muslims for centuries. The Tanach is the Jewish guidebook and the Qur'an is the Muslim guidebook.
Some believe that they do not need to read the Tanach.Some say that the Qur'an contains the entire truth and cite a passage in the Hadith (oral tradition of the sayings of Mohammed) where Mohammed saw Omar reading the Tanach and told him he did not need to do so. A Muslim, it is said, can lead a proper life by following the five basic principles of Islam alone.
Not being required to read the Tanach does not mean that Muslims should reject its teachings. This view is supported by a Hadith which relates that upon seeing Jews carrying a Torah scroll Muhammed stopped them, kissed the scroll and spoke to the Torah, saying, "I believe in you and in your contents".
According to another Hadith, Muhammed said, "Quote at least some words from me, quote also from the Israelites, there is no harm in doing so". All classic Muslim commentators on the Qur'an quoted from the Tanach. Some say that the Tanach we have today is not reliable because, they claim, the Jews revised the original version.
THE QUR'AN ACKNOWLEDGES THE AUTHORITY OF THE TANACH
The Qur'an speaks differently about the Tanach, (which it refers to as "The Book"):
"The Qur'an could not have been forged apart from G-d, but it is a confirmation of what was before it, and a distinguishing of the Book [Tanach] wherein is no doubt, from the Lord of all Being" (Qur'an, "Jonah", chapter 10:38. Also see "The Table", chapter 5:52; "Sand Dunes", chapter 46:11 "The Cow", chapter 2:172. Additional Qur'anic acceptance of the Tanach is given in "Night Journey", chapter 17:3; "Prostration", chapter 32:23; "The Believer", chapter 23:56. These references to "the Book" always refer to the Tanach in its original Hebrew, not to translations which are often unreliable).
The Tanach was canonized centuries before Muhammed spoke these words of confirmation. The Qumran Scrolls, written 2,000 years ago and discovered in 1947, provide dramatic proof that the Tanach in use today is faithful to the original text.
THE QUR'AN RECOGNIZES THE AUTHORITY OF THE RABBIS AND THE SPECIAL STATUS OF THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL
"Surely, We sent down the Torah, wherein is guidance and light. Thereby, the prophets, who had surrendered themselves, gave judgment for those of Jewry, as did the masters and the rabbis, following such portions of God's Book as they were given to keep and bear witness to" [Qur'an, "The Table", chapter 5:48].
"O believers, be not of those who hurt Moses, but God declared him quit of what they said, and he was high honored with God" [Qur'an, "Confederates", chapter 33:69].
"We gave the Children of Israel the Book, the Judgment and the Prophethood, and We provided them with good things, and We preferred them above all beings" [Qur'an, "Hobbling" , chapter 45:15].
THE QUR'AN RECOGNIZES THE RIGHT OF THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL TO THE LAND OF ISRAEL
The Qur'an has Moses say to the Israelites about the Land of Israel:
"And when Moses said to his people. `Remember G-d's blessing upon you, He...gave you such as He had not given to any other being. Oh my people, enter the Holy Land which G-d has prescribed for you...' And the angels say, 'We settled the Children of Israel in a sure settlement" [Qur'an, "The Table", chapter 5:23; "Jonah", chapter 10:93].
Israel was even meant to fight for the land:
"...They [the Children of Israel] said to a prophet of theirs [Samuel]: 'Raise up for us a king, and we will fight in G-d's way.' He said 'Might it be that, if fighting is prescribed for you, you will not fight?' They said: 'Why should we not fight in G-d's way?' Yet, when fighting was prescribed for them, they turned their backs, except for a few of them..." [Qur'an, "The Cow", chapter 2:246, 247].
The Qur'an confirms the special link between the People and the Land of Israel. The Tanach repeats this constantly. The return of the Children of Israel to their land is also proclaimed by both books.
The Qur'an speaks of the final return of the reunited House of Israel, both the Jews (House of Judah) and the Ten Lost Tribes (House of Ephraim), to the Land of Israel:
"Pharoah sought to scare them out of the land [of Israel]; but We [Allah] drowned him, together with all who were with him. Then We said to the Israelites: 'Dwell in this land [the Land of Israel]. When the promise of the World to Come comes to pass, We shall assemble you all together" [Qur'an, "Night Journey", chapter 17:106 - which foresees the return of a "mixed multitude"].
This Qur'anic prophecy probably refers to Deuteronomy 30:4-5, where Moses predicts the final return of the united House of Israel (Judah and Ephraim) from the four ends of the earth to the Land of Israel.
The Prophet Jeremiah, developing this theme, says:
"And I will cause the captivity of Judah and the captivity of Israel to return, and will build them, as at the first, and will cleanse them from all their iniquity, whereby they have sinned against me, and it shall be to me a name of joy, a praise of honor before all the nations of the world, which shall hear all the good that I do unto them, and they shall fear and tremble for all the goodness and for all the prosperity that I shall procure unto it" [Tanach, Jeremiah, chapter 33:7-9].
The Prophet Zechariah, who lived in the Second Temple Period (after the return from the captivity of Babylon) said:
"Thus says the Lord of Hosts: Behold, I will save My people from the east country, and from the west country, and I will bring them and they shall dwell in the midst of Jerusalem, and they shall be My people, and I will be their G-d, in truth and righteousness" [Tanach, Zechariah, chapter 8:7-8].
The Qur'an forbids making a division between the prophets before or after the Exile (Qur'an, "The Cow", chapter 2:130,208, "The House of Imram", chapter 3:78), and before or after the Hegira. Furthermore, the Qur'an praises the Psalms of David, which are Songs of Zion. The Qur'an acknowledges David as God's viceroy and Judge on Earth [Qur'an, "Zad", chapter 38:16-19,25].
"We sent not any before thee except men to whom we revealed: Question the People of the Remembrance [Children fo Israel], if it should be that you do not know -- with the clear signs, and the Psalms, and We have sent down to thee Remembrance [Qur'an] that thou [Muslims] mayest make clear to mankind what was sent down to them [Israelites]" [Qur'an, "The Bee", chapter 16:45].
In his Psalms David speaks clearly of the return of the Children of Israel to the Land of Israel. Psalm 102 says:
"Thou (O Lord) shall arise, and Thou shall have mercy upon Zion, for the time to favor her, yea, the set time is come, for the servants took pleasure in her stones, and favor the dust thereof. So the nations shall fear the Name of the Lord, and the kings of the Earth his glory. When the Lord shall build Zion, He shall appear in His glory. He will regard the prayer of the torn, and not despise their prayer. This shall be written for the last generation..." [Tanach, Psalm 102:14-19 (the Hebrew text says "the last generation", not "generation to come" as it appears in most English translations)]. "The Lord does build Jerusalem, He gathered the outcasts of Israel" [Tanach, Psalm 147:2, 69:35].
Jeremiah transmits the Lord's commandment to the nations:
"Hear the word of the Lord, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say: "He that scatters Israel will gather him and keep him, as a Shepherd does his flock. For the Lord has redeemed Jacob...therefore they shall come and sing in the heights of Zion..." [Tanach, Jeremiah 31:10].
The Qur'an concurs with this commandment of the Lord by saying that it was "sent down to thee as a remembrance that thou mayest make clear to mankind what was sent down to them" as quoted above.
Making that clear to mankind as the Qur'an enjoins you to do, you ought to make that clear first to yourselves.
The return of the Children of Israel to the Land of Israel is in no way comparable to invasions such as the Norman attack on England or the Spanish assault on the Americas, as you were led to believe.
The prophets, including David, speak clearly. They show that the Land of Israel is an entity of its own, distinct from the present concepts of Dar-es-Salam and Dar-el-Harb. It is the Land of the Lord God of Israel [Tanach, Jeremiah 2:7; Ezekiel 36:5; 38:16; Joel 4:2; and others]. The words of the prophets have begun to be fulfilled in our time with the ingathering of the Children of Israel after a 2,000 year dispersion, destruction of Nazi Germany, birth of the State of Israel and repeated defeats of hostile neighbors in unjustified wars.
Israel's enemies often claim that the Jews are a cursed people who are not entitled to the Land of Israel. Does the presence of confused and sinful men and women among the People of Israel justify this hostility? Was the hostility of the ancient Philistines justified by King Saul's weakness and sins? Were the hostilities of the Arabs against the Jews and their building of the Second Temple Justified? The Qur'an and the Tanach say no [Qur'an, "The Cow" chapter 2:245-253; Tanach, Nechemia 4:1].
The Qur'an commands Muslims to forgive:
"God took compact with the Children of Israel...for their breaking their compact. We cursed them and made their hearts hard...and you will never cease to light upon some act of treachery on their part, except a few of them. Yet pardon them, and forgive. Surely God loves those who do good" [Qur'an, "The Table", chapter 5:15-17].
Should faults among the Children of Israel nullify God's plans and promises? God is the Almighty, All-Merciful, All-Compassionate, who can forgive and establish His promises.
As the Qur'an says:
"We sent against you [Israel] our servants [the Romans] to discountenance you, and to enter the Temple, as they [the Babylonians] entered it the first time, and to destroy utterly what they ascended to. Perchance your Lord will have mercy upon you, but if you return [to the Land of Israel], We shall return...[to you]" [Qur'an, "Night Journey", chapter 17:8].
God promised that He will forgive Israel at the time of its return:
"And I will bring Israel again to his habitation, and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan [the biblical name for the Golan Heights], and his soul shall be satisfied upon Mount Ephraim [Samaria in the so-called 'West Bank'] and Gilead. In those days, and at that time, saith the Lord, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none, and the sins of Judah, and they shall not be found, for I will pardon them whom I reserve" [Tanach, Jeremiah 50:19, 20].
The Almighty will surely do what He has promised.
"The promise of God! God fails not His promise, but most men do not know" [Qur'an, "The Greeks", chapter 30:5, "Believers", chapter 23:76].
BARRACUDA says that there is no promise for them to establish a state, taking away Arab land. Muslims are forbidden to make friendships with those who expelled Muslims from their habitations [Qur'an, "The Woman Tested", chapter 60:9]. Can they prove that the Land of Israel was or is rightfully their land? The Muslims defeated the Byzantines and took it from them. Were the Byzantines entitled to this land? Were the Crusaders, whom the Muslims later defeated, entitled to it? Muslims, and even more so the Jewish People, were delivered into their hands. Do you really think that you became the proper heir of the Land of Israel because you took it from the Crusaders?
Were the Muslims not guardians and stewards until the rightful heirs (the Children of Israel) would return at the appointed time? The Land of Israel is assigned to the Children of Israel as an eternal inheritance (Tanach, Genesis, 17:8,21; Joel 4:3; Amos 9:15) notwithstanding the two foretold dispersions. The Qur'an acknowledges this, as we saw already.
King David, after conquering Jerusalem from the Jebusites, bought Mount Moriah from Ornan, the Jebusite King, and paid the full price requested by Ornan for it.
King Solomon then built the Temple, the "Beth HaMikdash", upon this site. The title deeds, including their confirmation by the Persian Kings Cyrus and Darius, are documented in the Tannach [Tanach, I Chronicles 21:24,25; II Chronicles 3:1; Ezra 1:1-3, 6:11,12].
Can you produce documents to nullify this or to support contrary claims?
Mount Moriah (the Temple Mount) is generally claimed to belong solely to the Muslim world since Rasul Mohammed's Night Journey and ascension to heaven from there. The Temple Mount even became Islam's third holiest place (the "Even Shatiah", or Foundation Stone, known in Arabic as the "Sakhra", is visibly honored by the Dome of the Rock, which is built on the spot where Jewish and Islamic tradition holds that the Foundation Stone is located).
How could these events alter or cancel revelations given previously to Muhammed, as recorded in the Qur'an? How can his expulsion of some Jewish tribes (only those which fought against him) from the land of Arabia, now referred to as a model case, alter or cancel the prophecies of the Qur'an? How can it be applied to the Land of Israel?
The Jews returning to the Land of Israel did not expel Arabs from their homes. Although Jews could have simply claimed their land outright, they behaved like King David and bought the land, paying full price to those registered as its owners.
Arabs were not expelled in this process of land acquisition. On the contrary, the Arab population increased and prospered parallel to the Jewish immigration, because with the influx of the proper Jewish heirs, the Land of Israel began to flourish.
At the same time, Arabs, instigated by the Mufti Haj Amim el-Husseini, began to attack Jews. Arab rioting against Jews occurred in Jerusalem in 1920-21. Hebron's Jews were murdered by their Arab neighbors in 1929. The Mufti el-Husseini maintained a hostile attitude in the mid-1930s towards the Jewish People and ordered the torture and murder of Arab Muslims who preferred normal relations with Jews to his baseless anti-Jewish hatred. Arab society paid a high price for allowing the Mufti's Jihad fanatics to gain the upper hand. In the riots of 1936/38 instigated by him, over 700 Jews and more than 3000 Arabs got killed by his gangs - Arabs whom he accused of preferring normal relationships with the Jews over baseless hatred.
Was the Mufti's behavior in conformity with true Islam? The Qur'an commands Muslims to give refuge and help to those who "have emigrated and struggled...in the way of God" [Qur'an, "The Spoils", chapter 8:73-76]. The very name "Israel" indicates this struggle. This is not semantics. Jews suffered from the hatred of the same European nations that subjugated Arab and other Third World nations. Only blind hatred causes some Muslim leaders to join hands with Jew-haters rather than admit Jewish refugees returning to their ancestral Jewish homeland [pages 117, 498-99, Proceedings of the Fourth Conference of the Academy of Islamic Research, Cairo, 1968].
Not only European Jews and Jewish survivors of the Nazi Genocide met the Jihad fanatic sword. Mizrachi Jews fled Arab host countries due to increasing hostility against them, especially from 1946-51. In those years more Jewish refugees immigrated to Israel from Arab countries than from Europe, forming the majority of Israel's Jewish population.
The attitude of the early Turkish Sultans could have set an example for Muslims. The Turks opened the doors of their empire and welcomed Jewish refugees fleeing the Spanish Catholic Inquisition. Cities such as Safed in the Galilee began to thrive.
Instead of finding refuge in the Land of their Fathers, Jewish refugees from the Nazis and those from Arab countries were attacked by Jihad fanatics. These attacks triggered Israel's "War of Independence" in 1948 and all subsequent Arab wars against Israel.
This should alarm those Muslims who heed the Prophet Ezekiel's words:
"Because you have had a perpetual hatred, and shed the blood of the Children of Israel by the force of your sword in the time of their calamity, in the time their iniquity had an end, therefore, as I live, saith the Lord G-d, I will prepare thee unto blood and will make Mount Seir most desolate and will make thee perpetual desolations, and thy cities shall not return, because thou hast said, these two nations shall be mine, and I will possess it" [Tanach, Ezekiel 35:5ff, Psalm 83].
Many Muslims today say that they can never make peace with Israel. From the point of view of the Qur'an they are mistaken. Their persistent refusal to accept Israel stems from baseless hatred, and has nothing to do with authentic Islam.
Some Muslims also acknowledge a prophecy in the Qur'an according to which the People of Israel might return to its homeland, not at this time but in the End of Days, which they calculate will occur in 250 years or so. Why then should they kill off the Jews in the meantime as demanded by Haj Amin el-Husseini, former Grand Mufti of Palestine, who charged in a 1943 broadcast from Radio Berlin (than the capital of Nazi-Germany): "Kill the Jews wherever you find them, this is pleasing to Allah" [See also page 122, Proceedings from the Fourth Conference of the Academy of Islamic Research].
Are those who argue this way sure that their calculations are correct? The Qur'an and the Tanach tell us that in the eyes of God one thousand years are like a day [Tanach, Psalm 90:4; Qur'an, "Pilgrimage", chapter 22:47] and that the Six Days of Creation, or six thousand years of mankind, may well be shortened.
The Qur'an says in this regard:
"They will question you concerning the Hour...Say: 'The knowledge of it is only with my Lord, none shall reveal it at its proper time, but He..." [Qur'an, "Battlements", chapter 7:186-88]. "Nay, but they cry lies to the Hour, and We have prepared for him who cries lies to the Hour a blaze...Say: 'Is it better, or the Garden of Eternity that is promised to the God-fearing...?" [Qur'an, "Salvation", chapter 25:12-16].
Beware of miscalculations that encourage hatred. Zionism and the State of Israel are not new forms of imperialism, as Muslims have falsely been led to believe. They are vehicles for fulfilling Divine promises proclaimed by the Jewish prophets and acknowledged by the Qur'an.
Ongoing hostilities against Israel may lead to the war of "Gog and Magog", of which the Qur'an says:
"There is a ban upon a city [Jerusalem] that We have destroyed. They [the Jews] shall not return [to the Land of Israel] till when Gog and Magog are unloosed, and they slide down out of every slope, and nigh has drawn the true promise, and behold, the eyes of the unbelievers staring. 'Alas for us! We were heedless of this. Nay, we are evildoers" [Qur'an, "The Prophets", chapter 21:96, 97].
Who or what prompts you to enlist in the hordes of Gog and Magog?
In this context the Qur'an warns:
"Upon this day when their faces are turned about in the fire, they shall say: 'Ah, would we had obeyed God and the messenger!' They shall say: 'Our Lord, we obeyed the chiefs and great ones, and they led us astray from the way. Our Lord, give them chastisement twofold, and curse them with a mighty curse" [ Qur'an, "The Confederates", chapter 33:66].
The next verse admonishes:
"O believers, be not as those who hurt Moses, but God declared him quit of what they said, and he was high honored with God" [Qur'an, "The Confederates", chapter 33:68].
A Hadith now often quoted in the above context, has stones and trees saying: "O Muslim, there is a Jew behind me, come and slay him" [Proceedings from the Fourth Conference, page 122]. This is a sad prediction of what is happening now. Are you taking words of stones and trees for commandments instead of the Word of Allah?
Transforming your own hearts into stones? Evil must come but woe unto them through whom it comes.
The Qur'an says Muslims must not harm Jews:
"Dispute not with the People of the Book, save in a fairer manner, except for those of them that go wrong; and say: 'We believe in what has been sent down to us, and what has been sent down to you, our God and your God are One, and to Him we have surrendered" [Qur'an, "The Spider", chapter 29:45].
"Have you considered? If it be from God, and you disbelieve in it, and a witness from among the Children of Israel bears witness to its like, and believes, and you wax proud -- God guides not the people of the evildoers" [Qur'an, "Sand Dunes", chapter 46:8,9].
Consider also these words of Muhammed:
"The ink of the scholar is more holy than the blood of the martyr. Faith is a restraint against violence. Let no Muslim [believer] commit violence" [Quoted from "Thus spoke the Prophet Mohammed" by Dr. M. Hafiz, Madras, 1971].
Surrender to God is never shameful. It is the essence of Islam! Pride and stubbornness and their evil consequences are shameful. Why should Muslims follow Pharaoh's path, which led to his destruction?
Both Jews and Muslims believe that God is merciful. His mercy is invoked in the daily prayers of both faiths. God wants the destruction of neither Israel nor the Muslim nations. He wants us to honor Him through love and peace.
The Qur'an says:
"It may be God will establish between you and those of them with whom you are at enmity, Love. God is all-powerful, all-forgiving, all-compassionate" [Qur'an, "The Woman Tested", chapter 60:7; "Counsel", chapter 42:14].
This tallies with Isaiah's prophecy:
"In that day shall Israel be third with Egypt and with Assyria, even a blessing in the midst of the land, whom the Lord of Hosts shall bless, saying: 'Blessed be Egypt, My people, and Assyria, the work of My hands, and Israel, Mine inheritance'" [Tanach, Isaiah 19:24-25].
Interestingly enough, modern Syria sees itself as the heir of ancient Assyria.
Isaiah's prophecy explains the phrase "from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates" [Tanach, Genesis 15:13]. It does not speak of imperialist conquests by Israel, as Muslim leaders allege. It means that a just and lasting peace will prevail between Egypt, Assyria and Israel, under the sovereignty of the G-d of Abraham.
Isaiah gives us a wonderful vision for the future of the Middle East, which the Qur'an supports:
"And We delivered him [Abraham], and Lot, unto the land [of Israel] We had blessed for all beings" [Qur'an, "The Prophets", chapter 21:71].
The phrase "the land We had blessed for all beings" parallels passages from the Psalms, which read:
"for there [in Zion] has the Lord commanded the blessings, even life for ever more" [Tanach, Psalm 133:3]. "Lift up your hands towards the sanctuary, and bless the Lord. May the Lord bless thee out of Zion, he that is the maker of heavens and earth" [Tanach, Psalms 134:2-3]. "Blessed be the Lord out of Zion, even He that resideth in Jerusalem" [Tanach, Psalms 135:21].
We, the children of Abraham, should unite in peace and build up a culture of our own, instead of fighting each other and feeding the war industries of foreign nations.
We are related by faith and by blood. The different rituals we observe should not lead to enmity between us. Quite the contrary.
The Qur'an says:
"If God had willed, he would have made you one nation, but he may try you in what has come to you. So be ye forward in good works, unto God shall you return altogether, and He will tell you of that whereon you were at variance" [Qur'an, "The Table", chapter 5:53; "The Bee", chapter 16:95].
It is from God that we follow different rituals:
"We have appointed for every nation a holy rite that they shall perform" [Qur'an, "The Pilgrimage", chapter 22:66].
The Qur'an even distinguishes between Abraham, Isaac and Jacob on the one hand, and Ishmael on the other:
"Remember also our servants Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, men of might they and of vision. Assuredly, We purified them with a quality most pure, the remembrance of the Abode, and in our sight, they are of the chosen, the excellent. Remember also our servants Ishmael, Elisha and Dhool Kifl, each is among the excellent" [Qur'an, "The Zad", chapter 38:45-48].
According to these verses, the three Patriarchs Abraham, Isaac and Jacob are described as purified, chosen and excellent, while Ishmael, although being counted among the excellent, is not mentioned as chosen. The chosen-ness of the three Patriarchs has to do with the Land Covenant which the Lord of All Beings made with them [Tanach, Genesis 15:18, 17:4-8, 26:4, 35:11-12].
While every nation has its own distinctive characteristics, it is exactly this Land Covenant which molds the People of Israel into something distinctive, unique in history.
The Qur'an stresses this repeatedly:
"[Allah] gave you such as He had not given to any being. O My People [the Israelites], enter the Holy Land [Land of Israel] which God has prescribed for you..." [Qur'an, "The Table", chapter 5:24]. "Children of Israel, remember...that I have preferred you above all beings" [Qur'an, "The Cow", chapter 2:44].
Note also the distinction between the calls and levels of Abraham's son Isaac, grandson Jacob and son Ishmael:
"We gave him [Abraham] Isaac and Jacob, and each We made a prophet, and We gave them our mercy, and We appointed to them a tongue of truthfulness, sublime...And Ishmael...was true to his promise, and he was a messenger, a prophet. He bade his people to pray and to give alms, and he was pleasing to his Lord" [Qur'an, "Mary", chapter 19:50-56; "The Prophets", chapter 21:72,85].
The Qur'an does say that Abraham "was neither a Jew nor a Christian, but a Muslim of pure faith" (Qur'an, "The House of Imram", chapter 3:60). He "named you Muslim(submitted) aforetime" [Qur'an, "The Pilgrimage", chapter 22:77-78] and admonished you to "follow the creed of Abraham, a man of pure faith and no idolater" [Qur'an, "The Bee", chapter 16:124].
However, could Abraham have uttered the creed of Islam as it was to be established later on: "There is no God besides God and Muhammed is His prophet"?
The expression "He named you Muslim aforetime" shows that the term "Muslim" is here applied in its etymological sense, meaning "one who submits to God", a God Fearer who followed the universal faith of Noah (Genesis 9) given to all mankind, rather than the member of a specific later religion.
This is brought out also by the ensuing admonition to "perform the prayer and pay the alms and hold fast to God".
It is in this sense that the Qur'an speaks of the prophets of Israel as those who have surrendered to God; i.e., as Muslims (God Fearers) [Qur'an, "The Table", chapter 5:48], despite the fact that they and the People of Israel were commanded to observe ordinances and rites different from those of the descendants of Ishmael.
An example of such differences is the Sabbath. This day of rest and sanctification is for the Children of Israel also a sign of God's covenant with them [Tanach, Exodus 31:13-17].
The Qur'an confirms this and even ridicules Jews who do not observe the Sabbath as "apes" [Qur'an, "The Cow", chapter 2:63]. So far, the Sabbath was not ordained for Muslims. Some claim that Islam is universal, that all people (including Jews) must adopt their own version of it. The above citations show that the etymological designations "Islam" and "Muslim" include there the People of the Sabbath (Israel) as well. This must be so. Otherwise, there would have been no need for Abraham to have two children, Ishmael and Isaac. The statements from the Qur'an quoted above are favorable to the Children of Israel.
The Qur'an does criticize those members of the Children of Israel who do not have faith in God and who do not observe the commandment of the Torah. The Qur'an never condemns the Children of Israel as a whole for not observing the Torah's commandments. Qur'anic criticims of the Children of Israel can never be properly interpreted as abolishing God's Covenant with Israel, nor can they be read as replacing the Torah with the religion of Ishmael.
Nowhere in the Qur'an is there any prophecy that would do away with Israel's special status.
Nowhere in the Qur'an does it state that God's promises to Israel have been annulled. Prophets of the One God cannot contradict one another. The Qur'an is in complete accord with the Tanach. The prophets of Israel, from Moses to Zechariah, rebuke the Children of Israel more harshly for their sins than does the Qur'an. Yet the Israelite prophets always stress God's forgiveness, grace and mercy, and that the Covenant He established with Israel will be fulfilled.
It is the triumph of His grace that will bring the nations to praise His Name:
"Praise the Lord, all you nations, praise him, all you people, for his grace did prevail over us, and the Lord's truth is for ever. Praise you the Lord" [Tanach, Psalm 117].
Hatred of Israel does not honor Allah's name, submitting to his prophets does. Hatred is a black hole. Once opened, it devours everything coming near to it.
This is verified by recent history. Today's Jihad fanatics want to outdo one another in their derision of Israel. They compete and even fight with one another for the position of Supreme Jew-Hater!
These Jihad fanatics view Jews as the embodiment of cosmic evil. In so doing, they replace the Islamic confession, "There is no God besides God" with a dualistic world view which is pure idolatry. Muslims should beware of these perverted teachings. They will have dire consequences.
I do not indulge in propaganda. Let us again consult the Qur'an:
"Have you considered? If it be from God, and you disbelieve in it, and a witness from among the Children of Israel bears witness to its like, and believes, and you wax proud, God guides not the people of the evildoers" [Qur'an, "Sand Dunes", chapter 46:8-9].
Four historic examples prove my point.
1. King Cyrus, founder of the Medeo-Persian Empire, recognizing the injustice done by the Babylonians to the Jews, allowed them to return to their homeland. He ordered and financed the building of the Second Temple. In the Book of Isaiah, God calls Cyrus "His messiah," the anointed of the Lord [Tanach, Isaiah 45:1, Ezra 1:1-3]. In the Qur'an, Cyrus is mentioned honorably as "Dhool-Quarnain" [Qur'an, "The Cave", chapter 18:83-98. The term "Dhool-Quarnain" literally means "the Lord of Two Horns". According to Maulana Abu'Ikalam Azad, a recent Minister of Education in India, this term does not refer to Alexander the Great, as often thought, but to Cyrus' kingship of the Medeo-Persian double Monarchy (see Tanach, Daniel 8:3,20)], which means that the Qur'an regards Cyrus as an example worthy to be emulated.
2. Caliph Omar, who liberated Jerusalem from the Byzantine Christians in 638 C.E., six years after the death of Muhammed in 632 C.E., revoked Hadrian's 500 year old ban on Jewish settlement in Jerusalem, which the Byzantines had kept in force. Omar welcomed the Jews back to Jerusalem. The returning Jews built the Bet HaMenorot Synagogue (named for the menorahs drawn on its walls), excavated in 1998 by Professor Naveh Mazar of the Hebrew University.
3. Salah-e-Din, the great Kurdish Muslim Sultan who liberated Jerusalem from the Crusaders in 1187 C.E., suggested to Rabbi Moses ben Maimon (Maimonides, who was Salah-e-Din's doctor) that he urge Jews to return and resettle Jerusalem (as recorded by another Jewish scholar of those times, Rabbi Yehuda al-Harizi). The famous Nachmanides Synagogue in Jerusalem's Old City, built by the returning Jews several decades later during the period of Mameluk Muslim rule, bears witness to this return.
4. Dahr-el-Omar, the sheikh who conquered Galilee from the Turks in the 18th century, told leading rabbis in Constantinople and Morocco that the period of the Jewish exile was over and that the Jews should return to their homeland and rebuild it. From that time on, the Movement of Return to the Land gained momentum.
Many Muslim scholars from earlier times can be quoted. They would have been banished or murdered by the Jihad fanatics of today. Muslims should not accept automatically the detest of Israel preached by some of their leaders.
The Qur'an says:
"God is our Lord and your Lord. We have our deeds, and you have your deeds, there is no argument between us and you. God shall bring us together, and unto Him is our homecoming" [Qur'an, "The Counsel", chapter 42:14].
Repentance is always possible. According to the Qur'an, even Pharaoh, when he saw his army drowning, came to his senses and admitted:
"I believe that there is no God but He in whom the Children of Israel believe. I am of those that surrender" [Qur'an, "Jonah" chapter 10-90].
When told by the Lord that in spite of their high age he would get a son from Sarah, Abraham prayed [Bere****/Genesis 17:18]:
"O that Ishmael might live before thee!"
Abraham loved both Ishmael and Isaac, therefore he had to be told:
"Take now thy son, thine only whom you have loved, even Isaac..." [Bere****/Genesis 22:2]. The specification "even Isaac", was to tell him which one of the two beloved sons he should bring to Mount Moriah.
Abraham did not merely pray "that Ishmael might live". He was not concerned that Ishmael would be threatened by Isaac, and would need a special prayer for the protection from the latter.
Abraham was concerned that Ishmael, biologically the firstborn, might try to bring the whole heritage unto himself, and deprive Isaac of the Divine promise.
Abraham prayed that Ishmael might live before the Lord. This prayer should encourage and guide him to let his spiritual Abrahamic inheritance get the upper hand so that he would be alive in the Divine spirit, and consequently recognize also Isaac's call.
The two brothers and their descendants should not fight over the inheritance but "compete in good works" as the Qur'an, Ishmael's guide book, says so aptly.
In the spirit of our father Abraham, let us , the Children of Ishmael and the Children of Israel, pray together:
"O that both of us -- Ishmael and Israel -- might live before Thee!"
The ruling wing of Islam has severed its original ties with the "Book" (the Tanach, Hebrew Bible) and the "People of the Book", Israel.
It plays out the idea of Jihad, and the quest of Jerusalem.
In the Islamic view, a Jihad can end only with a complete victory or else with an unreserved admittance that its whole concept was wrong from the start.
The Qur'an itself suggests the latter, and can help paving the way to mutual understanding and co-operation:
1. It stresses the continued validity of the "Book" - Jonah 38; Table 52; Cow 172; Believers 56; Bee 45-47; and others
2. It recognizes the teachings of the Prophets, even of the rabbis -- Table 48 (notwithstanding Repentance 30-35)
3. It recognizes the peculiarity of Israel and the unparalleled gifts to its people (including the land promise) -- Hobbling 15; Cow 60, 247
4. The Land of Israel is prescribed for the Children of Israel -- Table 23
5. Allah settled the Children of Israel in the Land of Israel -- Jonah 93
6. The Children of Israel are rebuked for not fighting for the Land of Israel -- Cow 60, 247
7. David's Kingdom (Zion) and Psalms confirmed, and he being acknowledged as Divine viceroy on earth - Zad 19,25; Cow 252 [cf Is. 28:16]
8. The Psalms and Prophets speak of Israel's return to the land and Jerusalem, and so does the Qur'an -- Bani Israel 8,105
9. Israel often harshly rebuked in the Qur'an, but there is no cancellation of the Covenant or of the Promises
10. On the contrary, the words of the Prophets shall surely be established -- Greeks 5; Hobbling 31; Believers 76
11. Abraham is called a true Muslim - Imram 60; Pilgrimage 77; Cattle 162; and so are the Prophets -- Table 48, notwithstanding their keeping Shabbat and their direction of prayer toward Jerusalem [cf. I Kings 8:30,42]
12. Abraham established a) Mount Moriah in Jerusalem for Israel -- Genesis 22:2, II Chronicles 3:1 b) The Kaaba in Mecca for Ishmael -- Cow 119, 123
13. Qiblah (direction of prayer) for Muslim to Mecca, and for Jews to Jerusalem -- Cow 140, 143 (cf. I Kings 8:29,30)
14. The Qur'an admits different religious rites, and urges all of us to compete in good works - Cow 143, Table 53, Pilgrimage 66
15. Allah wants to be honored by forgiveness and love - Table 15-17, Woman Tested 7, Counsel 14
It is the words of the Prophets which provide the base for true peace.
Arab and Muslim political leaders and some of the Ulema (clergy) misled their own people when they taught that Islam prohibited them from recognizing the State of Israel or having peaceful relations with it.
The authentic teachings of the Qur'an are quite different.
In "The Cow" Allah says that Jews and Muslims have their own special directions of prayer (Jerusalem for Jews and Mecca for Muslims) [Qur'an, "The Cow", chapter 2:140].
Allah Himself is saying that Jerusalem is as important to Jews as Mecca is to Muslims.
Nevertheless, most Muslim leaders continue to claim that Islam prohibits Muslims from recognizing the right of the Jewish People to the Land of Israel. It is our duty to stop this false propaganda.
We must follow the example of the martyr Anwar Sadat, the noble leader, who showed us how to look to the future with a positive attitude and learn from past mistakes. May Allah have Mercy upon him!
Muslims and Jews must recognize each other as brothers, descendants of Abraham, the messenger to the world of ethical monotheism. To do this we must be prepared to forgive past faults and understand that those who follow the ways of peace and forgiveness walk in the shadow of Allah. We must remember Joseph's forgiving attitude to his brothers, the children of Jacob/Israel, and follow his example by telling our Muslim brothers:
"This day let not reproach be cast on you, Allah will forgive you, since He is the Most Merciful of those who show mercy" [Qur'an, "Joseph", chapter 12:92].
My goal is to see that we do not turn the precious teachings of our prophets into theological battle swords that cause hatred and violence. These teachings should guide us to humility and understanding of the destiny that we Muslims and Jews must fulfill for our own benefit and ultimately for the benefit of all humanity.
"Dar-es-Salam" (Realm of Peace)
"Dar-el-Hareb" (Realm of War)
"Dhimmi" (second class citizenship accorded to Christians and Jews in Muslim lands)
"Hadith" (oral tradition of the sayings of Muhammed)
"Hegira" (Muhammed's escape from Mecca to Medina)
"Jihad" (Original Meaning: Performing Divine Commandments that involve hardship. Current Meaning: "Holy War")
"Qur'an" (Muslim Holy Scriptures)
"Tanach" (Jewish Holy Scriptures consisting of the Torah, Prophets and Writings)
"Torah" ("Divine Instruction", i.e. the Five Books of Moses)
"Ulema" (Muslim clergy)
PS:Verses in the Qur'an (Koran) are numbered differently in different editions. If you cannot find a verse cited in this essay in your edition, check the verses before or after the respective number.
DIFFERENT MISSIONS OF ISHMAEL AND JACOB/ISRAEL
The different missions of Ishmael, Esau and Jacob/Israel were to serve two purposes:
1. "As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his fellow", said King Solomon [Mishle/Proverbs 21:17]. This means that competition and emulation are ingredients needed for our development and growth.
2. Witnessing or conferring the truth of the One God to the nations.
DIFFERENT MISSIONS OF ISHMAEL AND JACOB/ISRAEL
Joined: 08 February 2007
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|Posted: 17 February 2007 at 9:49am|
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Note: The 99 names of Allah avatars are courtesy of www.arthafez.com