Facts about the Quran;

The question "The enemy: Is it Islam?" revisited

Background:

The Quran was written over a lengthy period of time. It contains, in effect, two books:

Similar observations can be made regarding Jehovah of the Old Testament. But over time, Islam has demonstrated a pattern:
  1. Where Islam is not politically dominant, it is passive and "peaceful".
  2. Wherever it is dominant, it is aggressive and intolerant
Islam in Phase 1 is in its "waiting" phase, awaiting Phase 2. These two phases parallel the two phases of Mohammed's life.   Remember that he was born and raised in Mecca, and then he was run out of Mecca to Medina.  

During the early part of the creation of the religion, Mohammed was living in Mecca.

During this time he wrote of peace and love and "let’s all just get along".   He taught peaceful coexistence with the Jews and Christians.   He called them “people of the Book”, meaning of the Bible.   He said the same things we hear today from moderate Muslims.   It is during this time that his visions brought the peaceful side of the Quran for his followers to write down for him.

In retrospect, he was just waiting, trying to grow the base of followers, protecting himself by being compatible and non-threatening.   But when he was run out of Mecca [lower oval] and escaped to Medina [upper oval], where he had more followers and where he quickly grew the follower base, he soon came to a position of power.   Remember from last week, this is when he first tried to make friends with the Jews in Medina.

Remember that this is when he started attacking the caravans and slaughtering the Jews.   From Medina he started conquering other cities, and returned to conquer Mecca, then the entire region.   Ultimately, the Muslims were able to conquer a wide swath from Portugal to India.   It was during this period that he caused the aggressive portions of the Quran to be written.   It is during this time that he instructed his followers to kill all the infidels.

According to the sociologists who have studied the history of Islam, as soon as the Muslims population in a region becomes large enough to assert power, the Muslim community becomes aggressive, and starts quoting the mean side of the Quran and exercising the mean side of the practice of the religion. just like Mohammed did after leaving Mecca.

So the plot thickens.   Nothing is as simple as we would like.   The study of Islam starts to overlap with the question of radical Islamic terrorism.   One writer made a point that the problem today is not Islam, but Radical Islamic Terrorism, and that you cannot separate Radical Islam from the terrorism; they are one and the same, Just as you cannot separate Islam from politics and social practices and racial superiority.

Facts about the Quran:

Remember that Mohammed at first thought that his visions were from the Jinn, a demon from Satan.   Satan and the Jinn are the last topics in the Quran.

The University of Virginia and the University of Michigan provide resource pages on their websites where you can do a word search on "Koran".   Although Jesus is mentioned in the Quran, you won't find "Jesus" in a word search. His name is spelled "Isa" in Arabic.

The Quran was written 500 years after the New Testament, and 1,000 years after the Old Testament. So it exhibits distortions of the record brought on by oral tradition across hundreds of years.

Examples:

  1. The story of Cain and Abel - After Cain killed his brother Abel, the Quran says that "Allah sent a raven who scratched the ground to show him how to hide the shame of his brother." Sura 5:31.
  2. The story of Noah and the Flood - The Quran in Sura 11:42 & 43 says that one of the sons of Noah refused to go into the Ark and was drowned in the flood, while the Bible says that all three sons of Noah went into the Ark with him and were saved from the flood (Genesis 7:7).

    In Sura 11:44 the Quran says that the Ark came to rest on top of mount Judi, while the Bible says that it was Mount Ararat (Genesis 8:4).

    Most of the changes that Mohammed made, made the story more Arab and less Jewish.

  3. The Story of Abraham - Abraham's father, according to the Quran, is Azar (Sura 6:75) while the Bible says that his name was Terah (Genesis 11:26).   The Quran says Abraham had two sons; the Bible says there were eight.

    The Quran says some of Abraham's descendants lived in the valley of Mecca (Sura 14:37), while the Bible says they lived in Hebron (Genesis 13:18).

    The Quran says that Abraham had two wives; in the Bible he had three.

    The Quran says that he built the Ka'aba (Sura 2:125-127).   The Bible has no record of that, but almost required if you are to believe the Quran as Mohammed caused it to be written.

    The Quran says that of Abraham’s two sons, Ishmael was the favorite and the more blessed.   This is a key requirement if the Arabs are to be better than the Jews.

  4. The story of Moses - The Quran states that the one who adopted Moses was Pharaoh's wife (Sura 28:9), While the Bible says it was Pharaoh's daughter (Exodus 2:5).

    The Quran states that Haman lived in Egypt during Moses' time (Sura 28:6), while the Bible says that Haman lived in Persia during King Ahasuerus time (Esther 3:1).

  5. The story of Mary, the mother of Jesus - The Quran states that her brother was Aaron (Sura 19:28), while the Bible says that Aaron lived 1300 years before Mary (Numbers 26:59).

    It says that she gave birth to Jesus under a palm tree (Sura 19:23), while the Bible says it was in a stable (Luke 2:7). Again, it sounds more Arab.

    The Qur’an says that Jesus spoke and made miracles at the time he was a baby (Sura 19:24-26).   The Bible has no record of that.

  6. The story of John the Baptist - The Qur’an says That Zacharias, his father, could not speak for three nights (Sura 19:10), while the Bible says he could not speak until the child was born (or for about 9 months), Luke 1:20.

Mohammed and his followers could not even copy the existing stories correctly, even when they had no reason to change them.

When you study the history of the written Quran, you will find that the 3rd Caliph after Mohammed gathered all of the writings he could find, sorted them by chapter length.   Therefore, the chapters are sorted not by chronology, to follow the history, or by topic, but by how long they are.   (I have not been able to determine if it is longest to shortest or not, but that is my guess.)   And then they burned all of the originals.

There are many practices referred to in the Quran that were never practiced until several hundred years after the Quran was supposedly written.   Many Bible manuscripts, on the other hand, are dated long before the Quran.   And there are thousands of parts and fragments that verify the validity of the Old Testament long before the Quran was written.

So when the Bible and the Quran are in conflict about a story, historical and documentary evidence supports the Bible and refutes the Quran version.

After a while, this kind of critical study makes a mockery of the Quran.   From this background, I have come to the conclusion that Islam is a poorly concocted copycat religion.   Mohammed took parts of what he admired and of which he was jealous from Judaism and Christianity, and designed a religion for his people.   And he did it from information that had been messed up by some practices of the religions at the time.   He wanted a religion for his people that was like the people of whom he was so jealous, but he wanted his people’s religion to be a little better.   (One-upmanship).

The more you study the details of the Qur’an, the more you see that it was written with a design, with an agenda.

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Next Week: - We will see what the Quran says about Theology:

Then we will look at some other topics in the Quran: