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Muhammad the ... prophet part III

Reader comment on item: Is Allah God?
in response to reader comment: Muhammad the prophet part one

Submitted by Richard the Lion heart (United States), Jan 26, 2006 at 20:11

Some Muslims have attempted to show that Jesus did predict the coming of Muhammad. Muslims often point to Jesus' promise to send another Comforter (Greek, Paraclete) as a prediction of their prophet. (Cf. John 14:16-17, 26; 15:26; 16:7-15)

Even though the Lord Jesus clearly identifies the Comforter as the Holy Spirit in John 14:26, Muslims try to use John 16:7 to prove that the Comforter cannot be referring to the Holy Spirit:


"But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you."
Christ makes it clear that he must depart in order for the Comforter to arrive. If Christ did not depart then the Comforter would not come. It is presumed that since the Holy Spirit was already present during Christ's ministry, the Comforter cannot be referring to him. This could only be referring to Muhammad who arrived nearly 600 years after Christ had departed. (Cf. Matthew 3:16-17)

The only problem with the Muslim interpretation is that it ignores the context of Jesus' statement. For instance, Jesus wasn't claiming that the Comforter was not already present, but that the Comforter would not be present in the manner that Jesus had described earlier. Here are Jesus' words in their context:


"And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever - the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, FOR HE LIVES WITH YOU AND WILL BE IN YOU." John 14:16-17
The Lord clearly states that the Comforter was already present with the disciples and that his followers knew him. The difference is that even though the Comforter was present with the disciples he would not be able to indwell and empower them until Jesus ascended into heavenly glory. John reiterates this very point earlier in his Gospel:


"Then John gave this testimony: ‘I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him.'" John 1:32
"On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, ‘If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him.' By this he meant THE SPIRIT, whom those who believed in him were LATER to receive. Up to that time THE SPIRIT HAD NOT BEEN GIVEN, since Jesus had not yet been glorified." John 7:37-39

Hence, when John 16:7 is read within its immediate and greater context the Comforter can only be referring to God's Holy Spirit. It cannot be referring to Muhammad.

There are additional problems with viewing the Comforter as a prediction of Muhammad, some of which include:


According to John 14:17 the Comforter would be able to indwell all the disciples at the same time. This means that the Comforter could only be an immaterial entity, a spirit, since a physical entity cannot indwell anyone, let alone a group of men at the same time. This also implies that the Comforter is omnipresent. Since God alone is omnipresent, this means that the Comforter is God. Unless a Muslim wants to claim that Muhammad is God then there is no basis to view these references as predicting the prophet of Islam.
The Comforter was to glorify Christ by taking what belongs to Christ and making it known to his followers:

"But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will take from what is mine and make it known to you." John 16:13-15
Jesus claims that everything that the Father owns belongs to him. This makes Jesus the Heir of all things. Yet the Quran claims that Allah is the Heir of all things:


"And certainly We! We it is Who give life, and cause death, and We are THE HEIRS." S. 15:23
"Lo! We, only We, inherit the earth and all who are thereon, and unto Us they are returned." S. 19:40

Taking these points to their natural conclusion would inevitably mean that Jesus is Allah, the God of Muhammad! Note the following syllogism:


Muhammad is the Comforter
The Comforter was to glorify Jesus
All things belong to Christ
Muhammad glorified Allah
All things belong to Allah
Therefore Jesus is Allah!
Which Muslim would agree to this? The fact that no Muslim would or could accept such reasoning only reinforces the absurdity of trying to make Muhammad the Comforter predicted by Christ. ...
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