The Gospel revealed to the Prophet Jesus (pbuh) is a true Book that is guidance and light as revealed in the Qur’an. However, some parts of the Gospel were either lost in time or corrupted. Despite this, many truthful statements which belong to the true religion have been preserved in the Gospel. Muslims appraise the Gospel in the guidance of the Qur’an and hold good opinion of those accounts that conform with the verses and the hadiths, considering these passages were not corrupted. Therefore, Muslims may benefit from the statements in the Gospel which are consistent with the Qur’an and the hadiths.
One may surely understand why some Christians do not want to acknowledge the possibility that the Gospel, the Book of truth, which God revealed as a light, was changed and misinterpreted over time. They may get discontent when they learn that they are abiding by a book that has been corrupted, when all along they thought it was a true book. Yet, sincere Christians should take a fact into consideration: Most parts of the Gospel represent the Truth. The original Gospel sent down to the Prophet Jesus (pbuh) is revelation by God and has deep and profound meaning and exquisite wording that is esteemed in the Qur’an. However, each and every Christian who holds sincere judgment may clearly recognize those parts either incorporated later in the Gospel or wrongly expounded. In order to comprehend this, sincere Christians should take the following facts in consideration and assess these points with wisdom:
Besides consisting of the truthful revelation sent down to the Prophet Jesus (as), the Gospel also includes practices of the Prophet Jesus (pbuh), his sayings narrated from one to another over time, as well as information on various historical events and letters belonging to the apostles. Therefore, claiming that these are “unchangeable and absolute commands of God” is not going to be the right approach. There are passages annexed to the Gospel later on as words of the prophets, but their veracity is controversial as they bear qualities of hearsay.
Some parts were appended to the Gospel centuries later after the time of the Prophet Jesus (pbuh) and those passages were based on information that was accepted and put into effect by selection of a council. The truthfulness and objectivity of these messages is highly questionable. In fact, due to this, opposing sects in Christianity appeared, and these disagreements caused controversies and disputation. The drastic segmentation of the Christian world in the 3rd century was based on these polemical passages in question.
The four gospels that constitute the Gospel were selected among the many other texts at the Council of Nicea by a majority vote. Just as any person with plain good sense would admit, the authenticity of a book written in various versions and in different context is open to dispute. Besides, there is uncertainty as to how the decision was made to select these different 4 Gospels. There isn’t any certainty as to which one of these canonized four gospels, that are in serious conflict with one another, provides the exact truth.
There is substantial discrepancy among the Gospels, of which the number has been reduced to four. While synoptic Gospels (Mark, Matthew and Luke) accommodate substantive inconsistencies with the Gospel of John, even those incorporate significant deviation from one another. If we are to accept the message of one of the Gospels as true, then we are required to ignore the contradictory information given in another. If only one of the two messages is factual, then it is not possible to claim that the Gospel is a non-corrupted book, and every word of it is based on revelation. Indeed, only this instance is adequate as clear proof that the Gospel was indeed corrupted.
In the Gospel, information is given on the (so-called) crucifixion of the Prophet Jesus (pbuh) and the Holy Scripture is proceeded with happenings after his (so-called) death. There is again a very serious contradiction at this point. For example, how come the Holy Gospel, which was revealed to the Prophet Jesus (pbuh) and is the greatest verity for him, include events that take place after his (so-called) death? Obviously, those passages in question were comprised, historically compiledby people who witnessed that period. Eventually, it is not possible to call these texts revelations by God.
Almighty God surely has the power to protect the true Books which He revealed to humanity as guidance. Christians, however, bring this superior attribute of our Lord as evidence in order to deny the statements in regard to the corruption of the Gospel. As a matter of fact, there is wisdom hidden here that needs to be appreciated:
To emphasize once again, surely God is supreme and all-powerful to preserve His book. Almighty God is omnipotent over all creation in the universe. Yet, not everything in the universe is flawless and there is a specific wisdom behind the creation of weaknesses.
The corruption which has taken place in the Holy Gospel and made evident with clear proofs has occurred by the will of God and His ordinance. This has come to happen with wisdom and ultimately created for a special test that God decreed. Since God manifests the prevailing circumstances this way and shows the proofs on this matter in plain sight, one should not be obsessed with a fixed idea but try to see and understand the insight behind all this. Obviously, the Christian world is being tested by means of this fact. They are summoned to use their conscience. It is apparent that this situation is a particular requirement for the coming of the Prophet Jesus (pbuh). By means of this trial, false beliefs will obviously be widespread throughout the world and people will fall into turmoil, dispute and bloodshed because of this, and eventually the signs foretold in the Torah, Gospel and Qur’an as well as the hadiths in regard to the End Times will take place. On account of this, the primary responsibility of sincere Christians is to seek the true commands of the Gospel and hold steadfast to these.
In fact, it is to be stated that the Gospel, the book of truth, has really been preserved in conformity to the assertions of our Christian brothers. However, the Gospel which has been preserved is hidden and not found yet. By the will of God, the original Torah and Gospel will be found with the return of the Prophet Jesus (pbuh) and both Jews and Christians will be judged according to these books of truth.
At the same time, our Christian brothers should acknowledge the fact that the Qur’an comprises and reveals the entirity of true commands of the Gospel. The righteous decrees of the Gospel have their place in the Qur’an and therefore Muslims are also obliged to observe the true Gospel. The Qur’an is the book of truth which confirms the Gospel and this way discerns the flaws and affirms the truth. In this respect, Muslims are followers of the Prophet Muhammad (may God bless him and grant him peace), and followers of the Prophet Jesus (pbuh) who observed the true Gospel, also followers of the Prophet Moses (pbuh) who abide by the true Torah. For that reason, if a true Christian is willing to adhere to the true Gospel and judge according to the true commands of the Gospel, then he will be able to find the totality of these decrees in the Qur’an. The Gospel that is the book of truth is our holy book which God praises in the Qur’an. God reveals how the Gospel was a book of guidance for humanity at the time of its revelation in the Qur’an in the following verses:
He has sent down the Book to you with truth, confirming what was there before it. And He sent down the Torah and the Gospel before this, as a guide to mankind… (Surah Al ‘Imran, 3)
And We sent Jesus son of Mary following in their footsteps, confirming the Torah that came before him. We gave him the Gospel containing guidance and light, confirming the Torah that came before it, and as guidance and admonition for those who have taqwa. (Surat al-Ma'ida, 46)
Then We sent Our Messengers following in their footsteps and sent Jesus son of Mary after them, giving him the Gospel. We put compassion and mercy in the hearts of those who followed him. They invented monasticism – We did not prescribe it for them – purely out of desire to gain the pleasure of God, but even so they did not observe it as it should have been observed.To those of them who had iman We gave their reward but many of them are deviators. (Surat al-Hadid, 27)
Finally, before our Christian brothers reject the Qur’an through a prejudiced outlook, they should refer to the Qur’an based on this viewpoint. Every person, who asks for an understanding of judgment between right and wrong in sincerity, will be granted this superior blessing of God.
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