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  1. mr.heathcliff

    Islam v crosstianity

    That is such an unfathomable statement I can only say that some people are so happy with fantasy that they choose it over reality. The fundamental belief of Christianity is so ludicrous I am always put off balance to discover otherwise sane people who accept it. God, in His infinite wisdom, created us with the capacity to sin and knowing full well that we would sin He created no mechanism through which we could free ourselves of that sin. Forgiveness is apparently impossible and God has to send everyone to hell to burn forever because we are all sinners. What a dilemma. God loves us everyone so whatever is He to do to rectify the situation? Perhaps He has a Son, who is Himself, to send to earth. There God would be delivered as a baby, presumably have his diaper changed until he was old enough to be potty trained and then when he grew up He would wander around for a couple of decades or so before delivering a few sermons and then have Himself killed. He had to have Himself killed to wash away the sin of those who are just dim-witted enough to accept such a ludicrous scheme. Being God, He didn’t actually die but those who accept His “death and sacrifice” are ushered into His good graces and blessed with the Holy Spirit though it seems to do them no good at all and they go on sinning the same as before. However, those sins are not held against them since they believe God killed Himself for their sake. Its enough to make one want to praise Jesus and weep tears of joy, is it not?

    What does Islam say? Man must strive towards God but we know that though man may reach upwards it will only be to stumble back because Man is weak and: “Surely the soul is prone to enjoin evil…” [Quran 12:53] When a person with a conscience sins he will feel guilty and be repentant. All of us are, to varying degrees, disgusted or disheartened by our own behavior and are repentant. A person can not achieve “goodness” on his own and, as the Christian is so fond of pointing out, it is only through the grace of God that man overcomes sin. A person who strives towards God and keeps failing will obviously be repentant and suffer due to his weakness which keeps him from his goal. A person may repent, time and time again and may even despair of improvement. The cumulative effect of a persons striving and failing and feeling the pangs of conscience is that God takes mercy on such a person and strengthens him with the “Holy Spirit” to lift him above his weakness. “As for such, He has written faith upon their hearts and has strengthened them with a Spirit from Him, and He will bring them into Gardens underneath which rivers flow, wherein they will abide. Allah is well pleased with them, and they are well pleased with Him.” [Quran 58:22] The question should be, how do we receive this gift from God? What path or actions should we undertake so that we may have faith inscribed in our hearts? Certainly God would tell us how we may reach this stage? What path should we travel? The straight path is that we should be wholly devoted to God and engage all of our faculties in ‘ibadat'(worship). For the Muslim that path is outlined and detailed by the religion of Islam.

    “Show us the straight path, The path of those on whom Thou hast bestowed Thy Grace,” [Quran 1:7]

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  2. mr.heathcliff

    review of conversation

    My thoughts on the Dr Jordan B Peterson (JP) and Mohammed Hijab (MH) discussion. https://youtu.be/qgYMuRqXPr0

    For first impressions, or first timers to MH, it was very good – Alhamdulillah. I think non-Muslims will like it, or even love it, as it does address some of the known contentions of JP and this discussion could have easily gone on for hours. I was surprised it was only 1 and half hour.
    I personally enjoyed it. If you want to read on, please do. There is much to say, and yes JP did become a little teary at the end.

    – So it begins:
    I thought JP introduced (as he does with all his guests) MH very well giving him the credibility (eg co-founder of an institute) and credentials (3 masters and a PhD candidate) to discuss with him. This dealt with people thinking MH was not fit to even associate with him. Regrettably MH has built a reputation of coming across as a jack-the-lad and not possessing the intellectual acumen but in this podcast he surely exemplified fast comprehension ability and was able to articulate his points well. JP didn’t say anything about MH’s Speakers Corner debates (and punches) or being an an You-tuber 🙂

    – JP’s sincerity:
    I felt there was some sort of caution/warning/heads up (to the liberals) made by JP that MH was not known on the “liberal front” [2:47] like his previous Muslim speaker Mustafa Akoyol. Overall JP was very calm and came across sincere to know the traditional positions (acknowledging being “blind to your own ignorance” [3:17]), apologising for cancelling previous scheduled meetings and has, I felt, been consistent on this podcast even to the end, eg seeking to rectify any other “places” that he “misstepped in a serious manner” [1:25:09]. He began the podcast by asking an intriguing question, ‘what exactly is “core” to practising the Islamic faith?’ This I believe was an excellent question to begin the discussion with. (For me the best question was at the end)

    – MH on a roll:
    MH went all out firing in first 10 or so minutes presenting the cosmological and contingency arguments using ayats. He should have instead say a little, pause and then sought to establish certain commonalities. Eg Does JP believe in a Creator, if so what exactly is that and how did he come to this conclusion, if not again how did he come to this agnosticism/atheism? Though JP believes in a Creator, it’s actually not clear what his actual positions are. As he just accepted Christianity without consciously critiquing it? He mentioned taking the belief “as given” [13:36] and later adding rational arguments only to give some strengths to it.

    JP completely side tracked MH’s rational arguments for God. MH introduced the concept of “Fitrah” and JP probed, “Why bother with the prepositional arguments then?!” [14:16]. MH agreed that fundamentally “belief is innate”, quoting Justin Barrett’s “receptivity to believe in God” and that rational arguments are for people who have doubts. (Note: MH made reference to other works and authors, not so much of this referencing came from JP.)

    – Fitrah cannot be a basis

    This belief is innate is correct, it is more of a sanctification (to worship something greater than oneself or something of higher power, this is borne out of humans recognising their own limitations and weaknesses). However such innate beliefs are fundamentally emotional, which does not give relied upon results and it is unstable, as emotions fluctuate. It is a feeling that simply exists and possesses no objectivity. Rational arguments are not only used to remove doubt but also to remove imitation, subjectivity and emotional basis and building the sound principle foundation to be receptive to truth.

    JP disregarded the need for prepositional arguments (his view of rational arguments) as weak, arguing that realm is “dominated by scientists” and “it’s [fighting] a losing battle” [19:41] and finds “inner state” argument more appealing. I am aware of the concept that though people believe in a creator it is for the du’at to get that out of them by removing the obstacles preventing or covering it, and what convinces a person to become Muslim are not rational arguments. This is effectively an emotional argument, appealing to human emotions alone. This approach is incomplete, indeed the human is a complex being, the approach is multifaceted addressing both their personalities (aqliyah and nafsiyyah) and natures (needs and instincts) and not simply untangling their Fitrah.

    – Human and divine
    JP’s question about “the divine spark in human beings” [10:12], which was raised again later, was to ally or blur the line between a God and a Prophet, not a prophet and other humans (which seemed MH was addressing). Christians believe Jesus (as) to be a Son of God, though he is also human in flesh he had divinity. MH did not fully refute this preposition but may have appeared accepting it eg “no point of resistance” [30:26]. I would make the clarification that prophets are infallible in terms of delivering the message and from anything that may hinder that. Their infallibility is not a godly quality or an attribute of divinity, this is by necessity since doubt in the delivery of the message would put doubt on the message itself. Their infallibility is because of God, like Miracles, and not independent of Him.

    – Pauline Christianity
    I liked how MH explained how the Bible and Torah has been corrupted in the Islamic view, and then went on to explain that in historical reality there were clashes between Paul and James, while most Christians have taken Pauline Christianity as opposed to James who was “man of the law” [24:14]. This is an important information for Christian listeners, it serves to show MH knows his stuff and for Christians to actually critique Paul’s narrative, experience and supposed holy inspiration. It was also apparent MH was in da’wah mood, he tried to appeal to the Christian listeners eg saying “One of the names of Allah is Al-Wadud”. [11:16] – this was good.

    – MH reciting
    I felt little awkward listening to MH recite. He wasn’t exactly Al Efasi. Indeed it is the kalam Allah and utmost respect must be given to it. I’m not so keen in reciting Qur’an to non-Muslims due to my own experience. Yes there’s Shifa’, a spiritual healing and this has a place. I’ve seen Ahmed Deedat (rh) do that a lot. For me, it builds an unnecessary barrier where people think you are trying to put a spell on them. It was interesting to see JP ask, “Why approach the answer to my question in that manner?” [33:55]. Strangely MH was accused by some Muslims of putting the Quran and Sunnah aside when discussing with non-Muslims [https://youtu.be/G5uFwrgxS4k
    ]. MH said he recited these verses as he wanted to give JP the “fullest Islamic experience”. [35:26]. “Giving you something to taste, rather than just explaining what it tastes like.” 🙂

    – Absence in critiquing Capitalism
    I wouldn’t entertain a clash between the “two fundamental monotheisms [Christianity & Islam] that are head-to-head” said by JP, seeking “to build bridges” [39:07] as if that is the main problem in today’s society. We are naturally going to have differences and extremes amongst Christians and Muslims, and this is ongoing, rather the issue of major problems on society level emanate from the implementation secular-liberal values. The degenerate values of individualism, unrestricted freedoms and pursuit of material interests and hedonistic pleasures. JP is actually part and advocate of capitalism, these were not addressed at all.

    To play that some how Islam is evil and violent is because of this clash with Christianity is completely wrong or it’s internal conflict with Shi’a. These I find to be red herrings on JP’s part, where he needed to be corrected. Islam is the alternative to capitalism and capitalism sees Islam as a threat to its hegemony over the resources of the Muslim lands. JP has swallowed a narrative and he simply cannot see through it, he said “in the west we look at the Muslim World and we see it’s riven apart”. [1:08:50] This “we” are the capitalists. Hence it had to make Islam the bogeyman. To play that religions are at each others throats or cause of wars is the pinnacle of diverting away from the ills of capitalism and keeping the masses in perpetual infighting.

    – Islam came for Non-Muslims too
    I also wouldn’t put Islam being an “evangelising religion”. Islam is not a preaching religion nor is proselytising an aim in and of itself. Islam is a deen that came for whole of mankind, whether the non-Muslims believe it or not. It also came for them while they remain non-Muslims. The non-Muslims will be asked on Yaum al Qiyamah why they did not pray, fast, give Zakah, go Hajj. Islam came to take nations away from worship of man-made systems to the laws of Allah. Islam is not a missionary religion like Christianity, it is a world view solving human problems from economic,
    politics to judiciary.

    This is very unlike of any other religions who preach while Islam wins people to its belief by its implementation. This I believe MH, is aware of but failed to present Islam as a true alternative to the actual problems of mankind. The prophet (sallal Allahu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) did not present Islam as a vicar, a priest, a rabbi but as a statesman where the mass saw Islam was able to solve human problems. He (sallal Allahu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) approached tribes and nations, writing state letters and sending of messengers with diplomatic immunity.

    – JP’s 2 contentions
    The 2 things JP mentioned that were “hard things to get straight in my mind” [44:12] were the wars of the prophet (sallal Allahu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) and the Shi’a-Sunni divide. He again reiterated the latter point by saying “Islam hasn’t been able bring its own house in unified order” [1:07:18]. MH did well to correct that the Shi’a-Sunni divide actually happened much later and Islam is not exceptional or prone to internal conflicts but did not mention these two divisions historically were not major issues after the Abbasids (which began by state initiation from Umayyad Khalifah Umar Ibn Abdil Aziz (ra) forbidden cursing the Ahlul Bayt)
    Shi’a and Sunni actually lived together without much conflict. And no, this “rift was there before (colonialism)” [1:10:10] was not in majority of the cases. Yes there were conflicts but not as much as the western narrative likes to paint our history due to its divide & rule mentality, like how they imposed nationalism. This major divide is pushed heavily in modern times by KSA publications to divert attention of their own negligence to their ‘arch enemy’ Iran (a diversion and bogeyman) and recent times re-emerged strongly by the Americans in the Iraq invasion. Shi’a always lived as minorities with their own theology and fiqh within the Islamic lands. I am glad MH reiterated this “divide and conquer” mentality is still present today.

    As for dealing with the wars of Rasulillah (sallal Allahu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) and making a comparison to the 2nd coming of Isa (as), I found that a little problematic. At first it sounded profound that Isa (as) did not have power hence he appears to be “peaceful” but when he returns, according to the New Testament, he will be “way more violent then Muhammad’s (sallal Allahu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) conquest in Medinah period” [50:13]. Firstly, Jesus (as) is not how later Christians portray him as, he was very much in loggerheads with the government of its day. Secondly, this doesn’t address the necessity of war and how Islam deals with nations that prevent the Islamic thoughts accessing the people. It simply reinforces Muhammad (sallal Allahu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) did bad; well so would Isa (as) when he returns?

    JP appears to have a pacifist view, though he in a previous podcast acknowledged a “Just War”. He needs to understand Islam like any other worldview seeks to propagate its pristine thoughts and sublime values to mankind as it believes its systems are good for them (not out of arrogance or malice but in utmost sincerity) and the obstacle it will face are the kings, presidents, despots, tyrants who are hungry to keep their own throwns. Hence the war is not with the people but removing the physical obstacles in the way of the da’wah. The people will witness the justice of Islam via its implementation and they would seek it, we are confident on this. There is historic precedence for this where non-Muslim Christian citizens were affluent and prosperous in the Islamic Khilafah State and even fought along side it against the crusade of Christians. The State returned the jizya (protection tax) because of it.

    Wars are a reality and this is not going to change. JP alludes to that “given technological mastery” [1:00:57] these things (eg defensive wars, offensive wars etc) should become irrelevant for some type of “union”. Nations seek to dominate others eg America in Afghanistan, Russian in Ukraine for various reasons from wealth, natural resources, strategical locations but in Islam it is only to bring peace and justice to the people by removing the obstacles. This is a matter we are not going to shy away from or mince our words, as we believe Jihad is a strength against tyranny and mercy to the people.

    Taking Islam via Jihad and Da’wah is a doctrine of Islam and for MH to say early Islam fought wars because it was going to be “swallowed by those two empires (Romans & Persians)” [54:09] is incomplete and misleading. This is were MH may be alluding to notion of ‘preemptive Jihad’. This would require a separate address but for brevity offensive Jihad in practice in classical period was undertaken routinely, without imminent threat, once or twice a year. The scholarly differences (ikhtilaf) was on the sabab (reason) of Jihad, majority said existence of oppression others said existence of disbelief (Kufr), in reality existence of disbelief was effectively an oppression on the people, hence in practice it made no significant difference. Preemptive Jihad is a modern twist to make offensive Jihad palatable to western minds.

    – JP’s warlord comment
    MH made excellent points why JP was selective in his use of “warlord” upon the prophet (sallal Allahu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) and rightly “unjustifiable” [51:34] as he did not use this term on actual historical military warriors. However I felt JP did not apologise and MH did not ask him to make a public recant as he does with other people. JP said “perhaps it was a injudicious comment” [55:43]. This is an acceptance of a poor judgement on his part but not an apology. However I don’t think he’ll be using this term “warlord” to describe the prophet (sallal Allahu ʿalayhi wa-sallam) in the future 🙂 At the end of this podcast he also thanked MH in “correcting” him me on his “misapprehensions”

    – Wealth of Muslim Nations
    A subtle point MH did not pick up is when JP made the interesting observation that for him it is a “mystery… that comparatively speaking per capita the Muslim countries are not that productive economically ” [1:12:36]. So instead of agreeing that the Muslim world has indeed been blessed with so much wealth and resources and it bewilders the mind (as said by Shaykh Abul Hasan al Nadwi (rh)), MH felt he had to correct JP that few of the Muslim countries are in the top ten GDP per capita. These Muslim countries wealth are not used for the Ummah and per capita is not a good measurement for standard of living of a nation.

    – A moment of laughter
    For me there was a really funny bit and this showed a genuine glimpse of the two speakers humour. It was when MH addressed JP’s “Epistemological pragmatist” [1:14:18] position. JP responded that the “highest truth” is something like “love”. The bases of utility is “love”. MH tried to maintain seriousness to his address by saying on this [Epistemological pragmatist] position Islam is doing the best as it has the highest birth rates in the world today, to which JP replied, “well that’s a lot of love, all that reproduction”. Lol and MH then said, “ha ha ha! Don’t try to change the subject now!” Lol MH again tried to maintain seriousness on his point saying JP actually agrees with those he is struggling with ie Post Modernist, to which JP says “secret love” [1:16:04]. Lol This was a genuine respect both had for each other where they can freely joke. We need more of these little moments.

    – Best question.
    For me the best question came at the end. JP asked MH like an expert clinical psychologist, how do you “personally” as a Traditionalist (conservative) protect yourselves “from sliding onto authoritarian certainty as opposed to sliding to chaos in liberal side” [1:19:09]. I felt MH answered it very well: knowing ones own vulnerability and having humility.
    There’s loads more matters I didn’t comment on eg difference between faith and belief, concept of submission, death of God notion, pluralism and there’s a bit where MH gets carried away saying Zakat is given to Non-Muslims! (It was given to weak New Muslims). Please do not let me put you off or prevent you from listening.
    Jazakhum Allah khair for reading. Apology for the length.

    https://www.facebook.com/story.php?story_fbid=10159507528353905&id=570258904

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  3. mr.heathcliff

    Quote:
    You can ask the same question about any lie, why did Allah allow for such lies to exist? But in order for humans to be tested in this life, lying has to occur and some people have to believe and preach those lies. If Allah wanted, He could have guided all of us, which is not a problem for Him or made us angels. In order to be tested, some people have to be able to disbelieve, commit sins, lie, etc.

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  4. mr.heathcliff

    The expression ἐν μορφῇ θεοῦ ὑπάρχων in the first half of v. 6, here translated “although he existed in the form of God,” raises two questions: (1) the meaning of (“form”) and (2) the force of the participle ὑπάρχων (lit., “existing”). Commentators have balked at the plain meaning of μορφὴ θεοῦ (“form of God”), since μορφή denotes not “essence”21 but “outward appearance” or visible “shape,” implying that Paul, a Jew, thought God could be “perceived by the senses.” To be sure, there is an important tradition in ancient Israelite and Jewish religion that God is beyond human perception. But there is an equally prominent tradition that God or at least God’s “Glory” (כבוד, kābôd; LXX δόξα) can be seen.

    According to Isa 6:1-3, God has a gigantic humanlike body: “I saw Yahweh sitting on a throne, high and lofty, and the hem of his robe filled the temple.” Accord- ing to Ezek 1:26-28 this body is not God’s per se but the luminous “image of the likeness of the Glory [כבוד] of Yahweh.” In 1 Enoch 14:20, the figure seated on “the lofty throne” is identified as the “Great Glory” (ἡ δόξα ἡ μεγάλη), whose “raiment was like the appearance of the sun.” Angels were imagined to have similar humanlike forms that increased in grandeur and radiance the closer they were stationed to God’s throne. To say then, as Paul does, that Christ existed in “the form of God” is simply to say that, prior to his self-humbling metamorphosis, Christ enjoyed a luminous appearance of the sort a powerful angel might possess. Philo uses much the same language in his account of the burning bush in Mos. 1.66: “and at the center of the flame was a form [μορφή] that was supremely beautiful . . . an image most God-like in appearance [θεοειδέστατον] . . . but let it be called an angel [καλείσθω δὲ ἄγγελος].”

    Numerous tortured attempts have been made to read the notion of an invisible “essence” back into the term, but none convinces. Lightfoot, for example, notes the use of μορφή and σχῆμα (which appears in the next verse) in Aristotle, where μορφή denotes an outward appearance that is unchanging and σχῆμα denotes an outward appearance that changes. It is not clear what this approach gains, since in either case outward appearance is in view. Further, whatever one decides about Aristotle, for Paul μορφή and σχῆμα are synonymous, and the point of Phil 2:6-8 is that Christ precisely did change “form” (μορφή)! It might be objected that Christ did not change form so much as add a form: “taking [λαβών] the form of a slave.” But that is to read too much into the idiom. According to Euripides, Hel. 19, Zeus similarly “took” the form of a swan (μορφώματ ̓ ὄρνιθος λαβών). Not all attempts are this sophisticated. Barth, with characteristic selectivity, avoids the problem altogether by limiting himself to the expression “equality with God,” which he interprets absolutely; Bonnie Bowman Thurston simply translates “essence” without comment (Bonnie Bowman Thurston and Judith M. Ryan, Philippians and Philemon [Sacra Pagina 10; Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 2005]). – Paul Holloway, Philippians (Hermeneia), pp. 117-18
    …The first thing to note is that, regardless of which way one understands “equality with God,” it must be taken in a qualified sense, since even in 2:9-11 Christ’s glory still serves the “glory of God the Father” (cf. 1 Cor 15:28). Strictly speaking, Christ is not “equal to God” either before his metamorphosis or after his exaltation. To interpret “equality with God” sensu stricto is therefore not an option. – ibid, p. 120

    If Paul had meant “nature” or “essence” then there were other words he would have used such as φύσις phýsis, οὐσία ousia, or θειότης theiotes as he does in Rom. 1:20.

    Philo of Alexandria says something similar in Embassy to Gaius 110:

    Is it fitting now to compare with these oracles of Apollo the ill-omened warning of Gaius, by means of which poverty, and dishonour, and banishment, and death were given premature notice of to all those who were in power and authority in any part of the world? What connexion or resemblance was there between him and Apollo, when he never paid any attention to any ties of kindred or friendship? Let him cease, then, this pretended Apollo, from imitating that real healer of mankind, for the form (μορφὴ) of God is not a thing which is capable of being imitated by an inferior one, as good money is imitated by bad.

    But if you pay attention to the previous context in 93-97, he’s criticizing Gaius for trying to “imitate” and make his “outward appearance” like Apollo’s. In the rest of the letter, every time he uses μορφὴ it seems to refer to shape or outward appearance. When referring to the “nature” of God he uses φύσις phýsis.

    Embassy To Gaius

    80
    And he looked upon himself as being in this respect superior to all of these beings, because each of them while he had his own peculiar honours had no claim to those which belonged to the others, but he in his envious ambition appropriated all the honours of the whole body of demigods at once, or I should rather say, appropriated the demigods themselves; transforming himself not into the triple-bodied Geryon, so as to attract all beholders by the multitude of his bodies; but, what was the most extraordinary thing of all, changing and transforming the essence of one body into every variety of form (μορφάς morphḗ) and figure, like the Egyptian Proteus, whom Homer has represented as being susceptible of every variety of transformation, into all the elements, and into the animals, and plants, which belong to the different Elements.{5}{the passage in Homer is to be found at Odyssey 4.363. It is imitated more concisely by Virgil, Georg. 4.410, who makes Cyrene tell Aristaeus (which is thus translated by Pope)–“Instant he wears, elusive of the rape, / The mimic force of every savage shape: / Or glides with liquid lapse a murm’ring stream, / Or wrapt in flame, he glows at every limb. / Yet still retentive, with redoubled might / Thro’ each vain passive form constrains his flight. / But when, his native shape resumed, he stands / Patient of conquest, and your cause demands; / The cause that urg’d the bold attempt declare, / And soothe the vanquish’d with a victor’s prayer. / The bands relaxed, implore the seer to say / What godhead interdicts the wat’ry way.”}

    114
    Have we not, then, learned from all these instances, that Gaius ought not to be likened to any god, and not even to any demi-god, inasmuch as he has neither the same nature (φύσεως phýsis), nor the same essence (ουσίας ousía), nor even the same wishes and intentions as any one of them; but appetite as it seems is a blind thing, and especially so when it takes to itself vain-gloriousness and ambition in conjunction with the greatest power, by which we who were previously unfortunate are utterly destroyed,

    210-211
    for all men are eager to preserve their own customs and laws, and the Jewish nation above all others; for looking upon their laws as oracles directly given to them by God himself, and having been instructed in this doctrine from their very earliest infancy they bear in their souls the images of the commandments contained in these laws as sacred; (211) and secondly, as they continually behold the visible shapes and forms (μορφάς morphḗ) of them, they admire and venerate them in their minds and they admit such foreigners as are disposed to honour and worship them,

    290
    O my lord and master, Gaius! this temple has never, from the time of its original foundation until now, admitted any form (μορφήν morphḗ) made by hands, because it has been the abode of God. Now, pictures and images are only imitations of those gods who are perceptible to the outward senses; but it was not considered by our ancestors to be consistent with the reverence due to God to make any image or representation of the invisible God.

    299
    “Moreover, I have it in my power to relate one act of ambition on his part, though I suffered an infinite number of evils when he was alive; but nevertheless the truth is considered dear, and much to be honoured by you. Pilate was one of the emperor’s lieutenants, having been appointed governor of Judaea. He, not more with the object of doing honour to Tiberius than with that of vexing the multitude, dedicated some gilt shields in the palace of Herod, in the holy city; which had no form (μορφήν morphḗ) nor any other forbidden thing represented on them except some necessary inscription, which mentioned these two facts, the name of the person who had placed them there, and the person in whose honour they were so placed there.

    346
    So great therefore was his inequality of temper towards every one, and most especially towards the nation of the Jews to which he was most bitterly hostile, and accordingly beginning in Alexandria he took from them all their synagogues there, and in the other cities, and filled them all with images and statues of his own form (μορφής morphḗ)

    367
    And he took compassion on us, and turned his mind to pity. And he becoming pacified merely said, “These men do not appear to me to be wicked so much as unfortunate and foolish, in not believing that I have been endowed with the nature (φύσιν physin) of God;”

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  5. mr.heathcliff

    formula

    X is in Sin,

    Sin is Mathematical or Temporally Avoidable,

    X, may never sin or he needs not the Jesus till he Sins,

    C – Crucifixion must only take place at the end all humanity (Universal Salvation)

    Yaaaayyy Jesus Saves Everyone irrespective

    Christian Exclusivism destroyed

    X is in Sin, Mathematically

    X is Necessarily in Sin,

    C – Jesus Can’t Help

    Liked by 1 person

  6. jamesmay2022

    quote:

    At least, this is what the word ‘first’ would mean if it was original to the story. Several scholars also regard it as a possibility that ‘first’ was added to the text. The woman’s retort that even dogs can eat table scraps does not follow if Jesus had initially said the children need to eat ‘first’. She is responding as if Jesus had excluded the dogs entirely, not simply made them wait their turn.

    and ANOTHER thing :

    the disciples say “send her away….”

    jesus replies , “i was sent to the lost sheep…..”

    but they are asking him to send her away, what has sending her away got to do with being sent to the lost sheep?

    the reason could be that they asked him to send her away by giving her what she wanted, but she said , “no, i was sent ONLY to….”

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  7. mr.heathcliff

    Short highlights why the empty tomb story and surrounding details are probably works of fiction.

    1. Most likely there would have been designated graves already prepared for crucifixion victims. The ludicrous scenario that Joseph was somehow in the position of scrambling on Passover for an available burial plot and the only option was to use his own family tomb, is historically implausible and violates practical sense. If crucifixion was a routine occurrence and burial was of the utmost importance then obviously this would have already been thought of and trench graves for crucifixion victims would have been ready to go. The Mishnah even states there were designated graves for criminals so, most likely, Jesus would have ended up in one of these graves since (if the story is true) he was convicted by the Sanhedrin of being a criminal blasphemer. Since Jesus had been “hung on a pole” then he would have been “cursed” (Deut. 21:23). It is unlikely that Joseph would defile his family tomb with the corpse of a cursed criminal blasphemer. Josephus says blasphemers should be buried “dishonorably and secretly.”

    2. There is an obvious reliance on the Old Testament for the Jesus stories beginning with Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem (based on Zechariah), the trial and crucifixion (Psalms). What are the chances that they modeled the burial after Isa. 53:8-9 and have Jesus buried in a rich man’s tomb? Gosh, we find exactly that don’t we!?

    3. Joseph, a rich man, would most likely not have personally taken part in burying Jesus. This grotesque task would have been someone else’s job.

    4. In Mark it says Joseph “bought” linen. Buying and selling items on a festival day was illegal – Exodus 12:16, Leviticus 23:6-7, Nehemiah 10:31. Notice how the other evangelists omit the part where Joseph “bought” linen.

    5. The verb for the “rolling” stone apokulio was used to refer to round disc like objects. The archaeologist Amos Kloner found that rolling stone doors in the time of Jesus were ultra rare, reserved for the mega rich (kings and queens). However, after the year 70 CE, rolling stone doors became much more common so we have a likely anachronism here. It is unlikely that the word apokulio was used to refer to a square blocking stone.

    6. The reason for going to the tomb in Mark’s story was “to anoint the body.” The problem with this is that there would be no reason to go anoint an already dead and buried body so it seems like a contrived plot device created in order for the women to “discover” Jesus’ body went missing. Matthew alters the reason to “go see the tomb.” John has Jesus correctly anointed before burial.

    7. The question the women have in Mark “Who will roll the stone away?” makes them look quite silly. Why would they head to the tomb without thinking of this in the first place? Makes very little sense as history but serves to create tension in the narrative which is released when they reach the tomb and find the door already rolled away.

    8. The remark that the women are invited by the angel to “see where he was laid” (Mk. 16:6) sounds mundane at first but realize previously at 15:47 we are told specifically that “they saw where he was laid.” The redundancy sounds very suspicious as if it’s been artificially set up. The author is informing the readers that the women see where he was laid so they cannot be mistaken that this was the place where Jesus was and is no longer there. See Adela Yarbro Collins’ Mark: A Commentary on this.

    9. The description of the tomb and burial evolves more honorable over time as if they’re either trying to cover up a dishonorable burial or make it seem like it really was empty or both. In Mark it’s just a rock hewn tomb. In Matthew it’s Joseph’s own “new” tomb. In Luke it’s a tomb where “no one had ever been laid.” In John it’s now a “garden tomb” and the burial is accompanied by 75 lbs of myrrh and aloes!

    10. The description of Joseph also evolves. In Mark he is a “distinguished member of the council.” Matthew omits this and instead calls him a “disciple” of Jesus. Luke says he was a “good and upright man who did not consent to the Sanhedrin’s plan and action.” John says he was a “secret disciple for fear of the Jews.” In the gospel of Peter he’s even called a friend of Pilate! His character is so fluid and the evolution of his character is so apparent that we are justified in questioning whether this figure has any basis in historical fact at all. If the story can evolve this much from 70-100 CE then how much did it evolve from 30-70 CE?

    11. The location of gJohn’s “garden tomb” seems to contradict it being Joseph’s “own” tomb as in the synoptics. In gJohn the location was chosen out of haste due to the Sabbath fast approaching. It’s unlikely the historical Joseph owned a tomb nearby the gruesome site of crucifixion. In gJohn Mary asks the gardener for the body as if it didn’t belong there due to being someone else’s property. So it seems we have contradictory locations of where Jesus was buried.

    12. There isn’t really any independent attestation of the empty tomb since all gospels follow the same burial sequence and discovery from Mark – burial by Joseph, discovery by women, missing body. We know for a fact that Matthew and Luke copied Mark, thus they’re not independent and John was written so late that it becomes extremely unlikely that he hadn’t ever heard the Markan narrative.

    13. Lastly, the original story in Mark just has Jesus’ body miraculously disappear without an appearance report since the original ends at 16:8. This is consistent with other “missing body” stories from antiquity that are employed to signal “this person was special” or that “a miracle has occurred.” There were other stories of Jewish prophets and Greco-Roman gods/heroes whose bodies go missing so the Jesus story is just par for the course really. In Dale Allison’s new book he even concedes this is the most “formidable” objection to the empty tomb.

    For more reasons see Matti Myllykoski, ‘What Happened to the Body of Jesus?’ in the book Fair Play.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. mr.heathcliff

      shabir ally has to deal with a major problem if he believes that the kuffar put isa on the cross, how does he know the joseph of a story is REAL? the guy who wrote the points above destroyed that.
      they would have been A READY TO GO burial process just like they must’ve done in the past. shabir ali should stop believing the gospel fiction.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Ofc I don’t agree with every arguments or every stuff he says, he’s a quranist with weird views and reasonings but there were also many other contributing authors who weren’t heretics… this website helped me a lot at a time when there weren’t many blogs out there dealing with Christianity, missionary propaganda was rampant in my country so when I started researching there weren’t many stuff online except Answering Christianity, Ahmed Deedat and Zakir Naik, apparently it was also the go to website for the blokes at speakers corner back then…I owe a lot to this website, Naoozubillah younger me would’ve been an apostate if it wasn’t for it

      Like

      1. I have no idea, last time I interacted with him back in 2017-2018 he was some weird type of quranist, I just checked on his website his conspiracy theories about hadiths are still there…I can’t say for sure…

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