Tuesday, 23 March 2010

"For they killed him not" - Part 7

The Truth About Jesus: A Muslim Perspective by Dr. Bleher, S. M. (2007) - www.idci.co.uk (Reg. Charity No. 1092139)


The second coming of Christ is another shared belief between Christians and Muslims, which is rejected by Jews because he does not fulfil their criteria for being the promised Messiah.

Other than referring to Jesus as the Messiah, the Qur'an does not say much about this second coming. The only reference to be found is the statement:

"There is not one of the People of the Scripture but will believe in him before his death, and on the Day of Resurrection he will be a witness against them" (Al-Qur'an, chapter 4, verse 159)

"People of the Scripture" is a term used in the Qur'an to describe the Jews and Christians, and as they are obviously not in agreement in their beliefs about Jesus, commentators understand that the unanimous belief in him "before his death" is a reference to his second coming which will leave no more room for doubt about him.

Islamic beliefs about the return of Jesus as the Messiah are mainly based on a number of Ahadith - sayings of the prophet Muhammad (peace be with him), which deal with the events near the end of time.

Those traditions inform us that Jesus himself will interfere in the confrontation between the Mahdi, the leader of the Muslims who will unite them after their earlier defeats, and the Dajjal, the Anti-Christ.

Jesus will descend on the shoulders of two angels near Damascus and join the Mahdi in prayer, thereby affirming his allegiance to and following of the prophet Muhammad and his teachings.

He will pursue the Anti-Christ and kill him, putting an end to all wars.

He will reign for forty years in an era of peace and complete happiness.

He will break the cross, removing the falsehoods which were circulated about him, and restore the pure teachings he originally had come with.

He will perform the pilgrimage (Hajj), will marry, and will have children, and will eventually die a natural death and be burried next to Muhammad, the final prophet.

In this sense, Jesus is the saviour also for Muslims. They look to him to challenge the erroneous teachings about his divinity himself. They wait for him to confront and defeat the anti-Christ.

They know that religious differences will persist until he returns as the Messiah.


Final part: Conclusion - Interfaith relations and tolerance

About the author:

Dr Sahib Mustaqim Bleher was brought up as a Christian before converting to Islam in 1980 and thus has an intimate knowledge of the practices of both religions in addition to having studied their scripture in depth. He is a professional linguist and has authored and translated numerous books and articles on various aspects of Islam and Muslim life in the contemporary world.

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