In discussing the Gospel of Barnabas (GOB), there are so many arguments from both sides as to the validity of the Gospel. Some Muslim sites claim that it is more accurate than the KJV and the NIV. They claim that Irenaeus quoted from it. They state that it has been found to exist on sixth century documents. They claim that it was the "original" Gospel. Many of these claims are based on assumptions. As we shall see, many of these assumptions, when exposed, should reveal the flaws in the GOB.
Assumption One: It Could Not Have Been Written by a Muslim Because it Contradicts the Quran
This is an argument used by many Muslim sites to justify their use of the GOB. "Why would a Muslim write a book that contradicts the Quran?" they ask. They argue that no Muslim would write a false Gospel that contradicts the Quran at points. This, however, assumes that a doctrinally learned writer would have had to compose the GOB. The more logical hypothesis is that a Muslim who was ignorant of the faith wrote the book (who would not know that the Messiah and the Christ are the same thing, for example, or who would not know the Muslim teaching about seven heavens). The real reason that Christians object is twofold. First, it demonstrates that Muslims who use the GOB are more interested in bashing Christianity than doing real Islamic apologetics. (Refuting Christianity is not the same thing as proving Islam.) It also shows a sorry desperation to put Muhammad into the Bible. Second, and more important, is that it shows that if the GOB is correct, then even the Quran is false! Thus, using the GOB is much like using atheist material to bash Christianity; within a few pages of the same book, Islam will probably be trashed too!
Assumption Two: The Gospel is More Reliable than the KJV or NIV
This is a claim made on many sites. However, such a claim can be easily debunked. First, there are thousands of manuscripts verifying the KJV and NIV. (One can even look at the Jewish Publication Society Old Testament to see remarkable similarities between the Christian KJV and this Jewish Bible.) No such manuscript attestation is possible for the GOB.
Unfortunately, this claim shows the outright hypocrisy of Muslims! Muslims often claim that the four Biblical Gospels have been "corrupted" because there are no Hebrew or Aramaic texts, which are supposedly the "original languages". This is totally bogus. We have the Peshitta (a Syriac version of the New Testament) with which we can check the Greek texts. Second, there is no evidence that Greek is not the original New Testament language, despite what Muslims say. Even so, many polemicists would have you believe that the New Testament has come to us in English via this route (and, by definition, these translations are corrupt):
Aramaic (Syriac) or Hebrew (no proof for these languages) à Greek à English
Why do I say that this claim shows that the Muslims who back the GOB are hypocritical is because we have NO Greek or Aramaic/Hebrew texts to confirm the GOB. The way that the supposed "gospel" got to us is through MORE STEPS THAN THE KJV OR NIV:
Aramaic/Hebrew à (Greek) à Spanish à Italian à English (or Arabic, Urdu, etc.)
This demonstrates that, according to Muslim logic, the GOB is inherently MORE CORRUPT than the NIV or KJV. The KJV and NIV were translated straight from the original language; the GOB is at least three times removed from the original Hebrew or Aramaic. The hypocrisy is incredible! The KJV (translated straight from the Greek) is corrupt, yet the GOB (translated from Italian, a language that didnt even exist in the first century) is the "gospel truth"! Clearly, if the NIV is corrupt, then the GOB is most definitely corrupt. The KJV and NIV are based on hundreds of manuscripts that are thousands of years old; the GOB is based on a singular 15th century manuscript!
Assumption Three: The Pre-Islam Gospel is the Same as the 15th Century Gospel
This assumption is very important. Why? First, there is no manuscript evidence to support the claim that they are the same. Between the 6th century and the 15th, we hear nothing of the GOB. This leaves open an eight hundred year period for someone to make a forgery. Thus, there is ample reason to believe that they are not the same (especially keeping in mind the many anachronisms found in the GOB).
Assumption Four: Pre-Islam Christians Would Have Had a Reason to Conceal the Gospel
Why, if, according to the Quran, the early Christians were faithful "Muslims," would there be any reason to conceal the GOB? If it were truly believed by the early Church that it was written by the apostle Barnabas, why would the Church want to destroy it? If it were so canonical, why would the Church want to destroy a work that Ante-Nicene Fathers, such as Irenaeus, quoted from? If it was so believed, then why do we have evidence that people were already worshipping Jesus as God in the second and third centuries, over a hundred years BEFORE the 325 council of Nicaea? Clearly, if it did exist, no one took it seriously. After all, it does say that Jesus wasnt the Messiah! The fact that it was "banned" in the first place (BEFORE the Advent of Muhammad) is proof in itself (if the gospel we have now is the same as the pre-Islam gospel) that no one really believed in it.
Assumption Five: All "Apocryphal" Books were Heretical
Another assumption is that the reason that many books (such as the GOB) were not included in the final canon is because they were heretical. However, this, is totally false. There are many books that were not accepted in the New Testament canon. Most of these were rejected not because they did not line up with Christian teaching, but because they were known to be MYTHS:
The following accounts we found in the book of Joseph the high-priest, called, by some Caiphas: He relates, that Jesus spake even when he was in the cradle, and said to his mother: Mary, I am Jesus the Son of God, that word which thou didst bring forth according to the declaration of the angel Gabriel to thee, and my father has sent me for the salvation of the world [1 Infancy 1:1].
Here we see a story in which Jesus called Himself the Son of God while still in the cradle. Why would the Church Fathers not have wanted to put this book into their New Testament? Perhaps it was because they knew it was legend.
Thomas, an Israelite judged it necessary to make known to our brethren among the Gentiles, the actions and miracles of Christ in his childhood, which our Lord and God Jesus Christ wrought after his birth in Bethlehem in our country, at which I myself was astonished; the beginning of which was as followeth [2 Infancy 1:1].
Here we see that, in an "apocryphal" book, Jesus is explicitly called "our Lord and God." This would have settled all disputes in the Arian controversy. However, this book was rejected, not because it didnt jive with current teaching, but because it was known to be a forgery and myth.
O Lord, Jesus and Father, who art God, also the resurrection and life of the dead, give us leave to declare thy mysteries, which we saw after death, belonging to thy cross; for we are sworn by thy name [Nicodemus 13:1].
This is as much as God allowed us to relate to you; give ye therefore praise and honour to him, and repent, and he will have mercy upon you. Peace be to you from the Lord God Jesus Christ, and the Saviour of us all. Amen, Amen, Amen [Nicodemus 21:6].
Here we see Jesus, along with the Father, called God. Moreover, we see that Jesus was crucified and is the one through whom we gain everlasting life. Again, there would have been no doctrinal reason to conceal such a book. The reason it did not make it into the New Testament is because it was not considered an inspired work.
There is one physician, both fleshy and spiritual; made and not made; God incarnate; true life in death; both of Mary and of God; first passible, then impassible; even Jesus Christ our Lord [Ignatiuss Epistle to Ephesians 2:7].
For our God Jesus Christ was according to the dispensation of God conceived in the womb of Mary, of the seed of David, by the Holy Ghost; he was born and baptized, that through his passion he might purify water, to the washing away of sin [Ephesians 4:9].
There is one Lord Jesus Christ, than whom nothing is better. Wherefore come ye all together as unto one temple of God; as to one altar, as to one Jesus Christ; who proceeded from one Father, and exists in one, and is returned to one [Magnesians 2:11].
Here we see Jesus called God incarnate and flat-out called God. The excerpt from Magnesians also says that Jesus "proceeds from the Father" and "exists as one" with Him. However, these books were not considered canonical or inspired. If the sole reason books were rejected is because they did not match or conform to the "corrupt Trinitarian doctrine" of the fourth century, then why didnt any of these clearly pro-Trinity works make it into the canon?
The fact of the matter is, books were not rejected merely because they did not "fit" the theology of the day. They were accepted or rejected depending on their inspiration. If the GOB that supposedly existed in the 6th century is the same one we have today, it was rejected because it was not inspired, just like all the above pro-Trinity books. Moreover, as we can see, not all the apocryphal books were destroyed; we have these works to this day. (In fact, there are several lost letters that probably would have been considered canonical if we still had them today.) The fact is, if the original GOB is the same as the one we have today, it was probably rejected because it was known to be legend or myth.
Assumption Six: The GOB Was Written by an Apostle Who Knew Jesus
It is true that Barnabas knew Jesus; it is NOT true, that He was ever an "apostle" in the meaningful sense of being a member of the Twelve. First, we can see from Matthew (10:2-4), that the apostles were as follows:
Now the names of the twelve apostles are these; The first, Simon, who is called Peter, and Andrew his brother; James the son of Zebedee, and John his brother; Philip, and Bartholomew; Thomas, and Matthew the publican; James the son of Alphaeus, and Lebbaeus, whose surname was Thaddaeus; Simon the Canaanite, and Judas Iscariot, who also betrayed him.
In Luke (6:13-16), we read something similar:
And when it was day, he called to him his disciples: and of them he chose twelve, whom also he named apostles; Simon, (whom he also named Peter,) and Andrew his brother, James and John, Philip and Bartholomew, Matthew and Thomas, James the son of Alphaeus, and Simon called Zelotes, And Judas the brother of James, and Judas Iscariot, which also was the traitor." After Jesus ascension, a new apostle was needed.
Luke (in Acts) tells us how the new apostle was chosen:
And in those days Peter stood up in the middle of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,) Men and brothers, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spoke before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus. For he was numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry. Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the middle, and all his bowels gushed out. And it was known to all the dwellers at Jerusalem; so as that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood. For it is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his position as bishop let another take. Why of these men which have companied with us all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, Beginning from the baptism of John, to that same day that he was taken up from us, must one be ordained to be a witness with us of his resurrection. And they appointed two, Joseph called Barsabas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias. And they prayed, and said, You, Lord, which know the hearts of all men, show whether of these two you have chosen, That he may take part of this ministry and apostleship, from which Judas by transgression fell, that he might go to his own place. And they gave forth their lots; and the lot fell on Matthias; and he was numbered with the eleven apostles [Acts 1:15-26].
Here we see that Barnabas was not even chosen as a replacement for Judas! He was never one of the Twelve! Moreover, Levi (the tax collector, Matthew) and John both knew Jesus personally, and Ireneaus believed them to be authors of the Gospels attributed to them (See Lee Strobels The Case for Christ, page 29). If Muslims consider the GOB credible because Irenaeus supposedly quoted from it, they should believe that his claim that Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John wrote the Gospels bearing their names for the same reason. (It was the Epistle of Barnabas that he used, but well get to that later.) Because Barnabas was never an apostle of Jesus, we should not consider his report (even if the GOB was truly written by him) more credible than Matthew or Johns record of events. What about Luke or Marks? Well discuss them shortly.
Assumption Seven: The Other Writers Would Have Had to Copy Barnabas
This assumes two things. First, it assumes that Barnabas was a "true" apostle. This was not the case. Matthew and John knew Jesus personally and would not have had to copy him (especially not John, who was part of Jesus inner circle with James and Peter). Moreover, John Mark, who was related to Barnabas, most likely would have copied from Peter, who was part of Jesus inner circle of apostles, and not Barnabas, who was never even a member of the Twelve. Luke, who got around to just about everybody, also could have copied Mark but obtained other information. Simply put, there is no reason to believe that the four Gospel writers would have had to copy from Barnabas.
Second, this assumption assumes that there was an original Gospel. According to Muslims, it was written by Barnabas. Is this belief sound? No. First, it contradicts the notion that Jesus received a literal book from heaven. If they had a book already from Jesus, why would the other writers have had to copy Barnabas? Second, many read too much into the "titles" "the Gospel According to ..." All "gospel" means is "good news." Thus the "Gospel According to John" is "the good news according to John," or Johns account of the good news. There is no evidence that such a primordial, original Gospel (Q) ever existed in the Islamic book form (a literal book from heaven). In fact, there is biblical evidence against this notion, found in a passage that Muslims love to use:
And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; [John 14:16]
Who is this Comforter? Ask just about any Islamic apologist and youll get the answer Muhammad. Lets see what else the Comforter will do:
But the Comforter, which is the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatever I have said to you [John 14:26].
This verse, by itself, refutes the Muslim claim that there existed a book called the Gospel that Jesus gave His apostles. Why would Jesus need to send someone to teach the apostles all things if He left them a book with all His teachings in it? And why would they need to copy from this book if the Comforter was going to bring all things to their remembrance? The answer is, because there was no "book." The Holy Spirit (the Comforter) came to the apostles, and it was by the power of Him that they were able to preach and write the Gospels (at least John and Matthew; Luke could have copied from Mark, who learned from Peter). If the apostles had a "Gospel" in their hands, the Comforter would be useless; they would already have possessed all of Jesus teachings and no one would need to bring anything to their remembrance. The fact of the matter is that no "original" Gospel (at least not in the Islamic sense) ever existed. The Comforter was sent to the apostles to remind them of Jesus and His teachings so that they could preach. Further, we see that this verse also refutes the claim that Muhammad was the Comforter:
But the Comforter, which is the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatever I have said to you [John 14:26].
This verse says that the Comforter was to come in the name of JESUS. In whose name did Muhammad come? The Quran tells us over a hundred times:
In the name of Allah, the Compassionate, the Merciful.
These words appear at the beginning of every Sura except the ninth, and clearly demonstrate that Muhammad did NOT come in the name of Jesus. Thus, he was not the subject of the "Comforter" prophecy. The only way that Muhammad can be said to have come in the name of Jesus is if Jesus (Isa) is Allah. However, this concept is contradicted by the Quran itself:
They indeed have disbelieved who say: Lo! Allah is the Messiah, son of Mary. Say: Who then can do aught against Allah, if He had willed to destroy the Messiah son of Mary, and his mother and everyone on earth? Allah's is the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them. He createth what He will. And Allah is Able to do all things [Sura 5.17].
They surely disbelieve who say: Lo! Allah is the Messiah, son of Mary. The Messiah (himself) said: O Children of Israel, worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord. Lo! whoso ascribeth partners unto Allah, for him Allah hath forbidden paradise. His abode is the Fire. For evil-doers there will be no helpers [Sura 5.72].
Thus, the Quran clearly states that Allah is NOT Jesus, and therefore, Muhammad, who did not come in the name of Jesus, could not have been the Comforter. Muhammad, therefore, is proved to be a false prophet (no evidence of his advent in the Gospels), and if Muhammad was a false prophet, what does that mean about the Quran and Islam?
Assumption Eight: The Testimony of the GOB is more Reliable than the Testimony of the Apostles
This is another important factor. Why do the Muslims who support the GOB think that it is the most accurate? Does the GOB agree with the teachings of Peter, who most certainly knew Jesus better than Barnabas? If not, then we can be certain that the GOB is false. What do the Epistles of Peter say?
In the GOB, we see this:
But Jesus lifted them up, comforting them, and saying: "Do not be afraid, I am your master." And he reproved many who believed that he had died and risen again, saying: "Do you hold me and God for liars? I said to you that God has granted to me to live almost to the end of the world. Truly I say to you, I did not die; it was Judas the traitor [GOB Chapter 221].
Peter, who knew Jesus far better than Barnabas, said this:
Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied. Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, [1 Peter 1:2]
Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot: Who verily was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you, Who by him do believe in God, that raised him up from the dead, and gave him glory; that your faith and hope might be in God. Seeing ye have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit unto unfeigned love of the brethren, see that ye love one another with a pure heart fervently: [1 Peter 1:18-22]
For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls [1 Peter 2:21-25].
For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ: Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him [1 Peter 3:18-22].
Forasmuch then as Christ hath suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves likewise with the same mind: for he that hath suffered in the flesh hath ceased from sin; [1 Peter 4:1]
Should we believe the Gospel of Barnabas, for which we only have a 14th or 15th century manuscript, or should we believe the words of Peter, who knew Jesus personally?
The GOB says:
Having thus spoken, Jesus said: You are just, O Lord our God, because to you only belongs honour and glory without end. [GOB Chapter 220]
The Apostle Peter, however, says
For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ [2 Peter 1:11].
But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen [2 Peter 3:18].
Peter says that we are to honor Jesus and even calls Him king. That means that either Jesus is God (which refutes the GOB), or someone besides God deserves glory forever (which would refute the GOB). Are we to believe one of Jesus three best friends, or a Gospel written by someone who didnt even know that Messiah and Christ mean the same thing? (In the opening of the GOB He is called the Christ, but in chapter 42 He says that He is not the Messiah!)
The GOB says:
Dearly beloved the great and wonderful God hath during these past days visited us by his prophet Jesus Christ in great mercy of teaching and miracles, by reason whereof many, being deceived of Satan, under presence of piety, are preaching most impious doctrine, calling Jesus son of God, repudiating the circumcision ordained of God for ever, and permitting every unclean meat: among whom also Paul hath been deceived [The Opening of the GOB]
But Peter says:
And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction [2 Peter 3:15-16].
The Apostle Peter called Pauls words scripture. Should we believe Peter, who knew Jesus personally, or the author of the GOB, who doesnt even know the geography of the Holy Land (Chapter 21)?
Since Peter calls Pauls words scriptures, we should see what he says. What did Paul say?
For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God [1 Corinthians 1:18].
Christ is become of no effect unto you, whosoever of you are justified by the law; ye are fallen from grace [Galatians 5:4].
But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us; Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace; [Ephesians 2:13-15]
For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; [Titus 2:11-13]
If this is what Paul teaches, and Peter, who knew Jesus personally, called Pauls letters scripture, I think I better believe what Paul said!
There are many instances in which the GOB contradicts John, who knew Jesus personally as well. (The contradictions begin at John 1:1!) However, aside from these contradictions, there are contradictions which irreconcilably refute the GOB. Where are these contradictions? In the EPISTLE of Barnabas. There are many contradictions in the GOB, so I think that if they can believe that the GOB was written by Barnabas, they should at least look at the Epistle ascribed to him (even though it too is a bit too late to be his writing). Many Muslims argue that Barnabass view differed from that of Paul to a great extent and that this is the reason the GOB is so different from other Christian writings. So, to see whether there is support for this claim, we should examine Barnabass Epistle. What does it say?
For God has manifested to us by all the prophets, that he has no occasion for our sacrifices, or burnt offerings, or oblations: saying thus; To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices unto me, saith the Lord. I am full of the burnt-offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts; and I delight not in the blood of bullocks, or of he-goats. When ye come to appear before me; who hath required this at your hands? Ye shall no more tread my courts. Bring no more vain oblations, incense is an abomination unto me; your new moons and sabbaths; the calling of assemblies I cannot away with, it is iniquity, even the solemn meeting; your new moons and your appointed feasts my soul hateth. These things therefore hath God abolished, that the new law of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is without the yoke of any such necessity, might have the spiritual offering of men themselves [Epistle of Barnabas 2:4-8].
This sounds to me like what Paul was preaching about the abolition of the law.
Again; What says Moses to Jesus [Joshua] the Son of Nun, when he gave that name unto him, as being a prophet that all the people might hear him alone, because the Father did manifest all things concerning his son Jesus, in Jesus the Son of Nun; and gave him that name when he sent him to spy out the land of Canaan; he said: Take a book in thine hands, and write what the Lord saith: Forasmuch as Jesus the Son of God shall in the last days cut off by the roots all the house of Amalek. See here again Jesus, not the son of man, but the Son of God, made manifest in a type and in the flesh [11:12].
We see here that Epistle of Barnabas taught that Jesus was both the Son of God and made manifest in the flesh (implying His Godhood). Both of these concepts are contradictory to the testimony of the Gospel of Barnabas. Clearly, if Muslims can believe that the GOB is credible, for which we only have an Italian manuscript from the 14th or 15th century, then they should be able to believe that the Epistle of Barnabas (written between 70 AD and 150 AD) was also a good representation of early Christian belief. This in itself disproves the validity of the GOB.
Reasons NOT to Use the Gospel of Barnabas
Thus far I have shown the many assumptions made by GOB-ist Muslims and demonstrated the error of these assumptions. There are, however, a few reasons that a Muslim should not use the GOB aside from the flaws of these assumptions. First, as I have shown, it is a twice-removed translation. If the KJV and NIV are corrupt purely by virtue of being translated ONCE (from Greek into English) or even TWICE (from Hebrew/Aramaic to Greek to English), then the GOB should be even more corrupt; it has supposedly gone from Aramaic/Hebrew to Spanish to Italian to English. It is only fair that they should hold the GOB to the same standard as the normal Bibles, isnt it? Second, the GOB contradicts the Quran. If the GOB is accurate enough to refute the Bible, then it is accurate enough to refute the Quran in its claims that Muhammad was the Messiah (Jesus is the only Messiah in the Quran) or about the number of heavens. Third, and most importantly, it undermines an important claim found in the Quran:
And believe in that which I reveal, confirming that which ye possess already (of the Scripture), and be not first to disbelieve therein, and part not with My revelations for a trifling price, and keep your duty unto Me [Sura 2.41].
And when there cometh unto them a scripture from Allah, confirming that in their possession - though before that they were asking for a signal triumph over those who disbelieved - and when there cometh unto them that which they know (to be the truth) they disbelieve therein. The curse of Allah is on disbelievers [2.89].
And when it is said unto them: Believe in that which Allah hath revealed, they say: We believe in that which was revealed unto us. And they disbelieve in that which cometh after it, though it is the truth confirming that which they possess. Say (unto them, O Muhammad): Why then slew ye the prophets of Allah aforetime, if ye are (indeed) believers? [2.91]
And when there cometh unto them a messenger from Allah, confirming that which they possess, a party of those who have received the Scripture fling the Scripture of Allah behind their backs as if they knew not, [2.101]
When Allah made (His) covenant with the prophets, (He said): Behold that which I have given you of the Scripture and knowledge. And afterward there will come unto you a messenger, confirming that which ye possess. Ye shall believe in him and ye shall help him. He said: Do ye agree, and will ye take up My burden (which I lay upon you) in this (matter)? They answered: We agree. He said: Then bear ye witness. I will be a witness with you [3.81].
Each Sura above demonstrates that the Quran claims to confirm the Bible that the Christians had in their possession at the time of Muhammad. (Notice all the present tense: that which they possess, that in their possession, NOT that which they possessed or that which WAS in their possession.) This demonstrates two things. First, it demonstrates that the author of the Quran did not consider the Torah and Gospel corrupt; if he did, why would he claim that it CONFIRMS that which the people HAD AT THE TIME? (Did it confirm the corruption and the "contradictions"?) Second, and more importantly, it demonstrates that the author considered it possible to prove the validity of Islam and the Quran using that which was in the peoples possession. We can be certain that the GOB was not in the peoples possession; if it had been, it surely would have received a lot of attention.
What are we to make of this then? Well, if Muslims must use works that are NOT part of what the people of Muhammads day possessed, that clearly goes to show that the Gospels are lacking in prophecies of Muhammad. If not, then why bother with the GOB? The sad truth is that by using the GOB, Muslims are proving that Muhammad did NOT confirm that which the Christians of his day possessed, and that for that reason it is necessary to find another gospel that the Quran does confirm. Thus, by using the GOB, the Muslim is giving the Christian even more proof of the non-existence of biblical prophecies that point to Muhammad. This leads to a serious question: if the Quran was wrong about there being prophecies of Muhammad in the Bible, could it also be wrong about the crucifixion or the Trinity? If the Quran is false about something like confirming previous scriptures, can we trust the words therein to save our souls? Peter warned about the coming of things like the GOB:
But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not. [2 Peter 2:1-3]
Could it be that Peters words have been fulfilled? Has there been a prophet who brought in "damnable heresies," denied that the Lord has bought us, led many astray, and used people for their money? If youre a Muslim, you need to ask yourself: who Peter was talking about? I pray that you would be freed from the "heresy" of Muhammad and come to know the Lord Jesus Christ!
The Gospel of Barnabas
Articles by Alano Perez
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