The Koran Affirms Divinity of Jesus - Despite Denials

by Lee Turner

Editor's note: The Koran, written about 600 years after the New Testament, was heavily influenced by both Christian and Jewish traditions.As such, the text has many parallels to scripture.The Koran's portrayal of Jesus, though largely false, still contains allusions to His true character that could point Muslims in the right direction. The picture cannot be completed, however, without the special revelation of the Bible and the witness of Christians.

If we who follow Christ could help Muslims understand who our Savior really is, we would see the greatest turning to the Lord in all history! The effort to achieve such a breakthrough would be the greatest imaginable stewardship of our time, resources and influence!

Muslims are supported in their rejection of the biblical understanding of Jesus by four Koranic negations about him. Those four denials are: 1) Jesus is not God (Surah 5:72-73); 2) Jesus is not the Son of God (Surah 9:30); 3) Jesus is not a member of the Trinity. In fact there is no Trinity (Surah 5:76); and 4) Jesus did not die (Surah 4:157). Those four denials of the reality of Jesus are not only in the Koran they are emphasized endlessly by Muslim clerics in sermons, both oral and written.

However, amazingly, there are seven powerful Koranic affirmations of the reality of who Jesus is. We must pray that somehow these passages, which are almost never mentioned by Muslim religious leaders, may come to the attention of the masses of average Muslims. Once having seen and understood these affirmations it should not be difficult for them to recognize and acknowledge Jesus for who He really is.

Those seven remarkable affirmations of the reality of Jesus are:

1. First, the Koran tells us that Jesus performed miracles. Surah 2:87 says, "We gave Jesus the son of Mary clear signs." And Surah 2:253 corroborates that reference by saying, "To Jesus the son of Mary we gave clear signs." A Christian reading these references almost instinctively thinks of Peter's statement, "Jesus of Nazareth, [was]a man approved of God unto you by mighty works and wonders and signs which God did by him" (Acts 2:22).

2. Two Koranic references, Surah 2:87 and 2:253, assert that God strengthened Jesus by the Holy Spirit. This parallels Luke's Gospel, "And when the devil had completed every temptation, he departed from him for a season. And Jesus returned in the power of the Spirit into Galilee"(Luke 4:13-14 ASV).

3. Jesus is called a Spirit from God. Surah 4:171 tells us, "The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was only a messenger of Allah, and His word which He conveyed unto Mary, and a Spirit from Him." The New Testament tells us, "Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom" (2 Cor. 3:14-17 NIV).

4. In the Koran Jesus is repeatedly called the Messiah! Just one citation can be given, that of Surah 3:45,"O Mary! Lo! Allah giveth thee glad tidings of a word from Him, whose name is the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, illustrious in the world and the Hereafter, and one of those brought near (unto Allah)."

5. The Koran alleges that Jesus was righteous. Surah 3:46 says, "He will speak unto mankind in his cradle and in his manhood, and he is of the righteous." (Surah 3:46) One of the many biblical affirmations tells us, "Him who knew no sin he made to be sin on our behalf; that we might become the righteousness of God in him" (2 Cor. 5:21 ASV).

6. The Koran also affirms that Jesus is the Word of God. It says that Jesus is "a messenger of Allah, and His word which He conveyed unto Mary." (Surah 4:171) Every Christian surely can see the relation of this statement to the great passages in John 1:1 and 1:14.

7. Finally, the Koran declares Jesus to be like Adam! It says "Lo! The likeness of Jesus with Allah is as the likeness of Adam." (Surah 3:59) This, too, is a reflection of biblical testimony. It says, "The first man Adam became a living soul. The last Adam became a life-giving spirit" (1 Cor. 15:45 ASV).

For each of us, our father is the most recent link in an unbroken chain of ancestors, binding us to Adam, and ultimately to the Creator. Christ's similarity to Adam comes from the fact that both He and Adam are related to the whole human race and both are the fountain of life for every human being. Adam is the fountain of our physical life while Jesus, filling a far greater role, is the fountain of our spiritual and eternal life. Thus, through Adam's infinitely superior counterpart, every human can have a true and eternal fellowship with the Creator, a standing one may never achieve through the first Adam.

Why haven't Muslims understood that the miracle-working Christ, strengthened by the Holy Spirit, who is Himself the Spirit and the Word of God, is the sinless Messiah, the only one who, much more than Adam, can impart life to us?

The mystery of that Islamic incomprehension has been made known through the Apostle Paul. He wrote, "The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God" (2 Cor. 4:4 NIV).

As Paul prayed for the Ephesian Christians that the eyes of their hearts might be enlightened (Eph. 1:8) and as he prayed for his unbelieving fellow Jews that they might be saved (Rom. 10:1) so, as a major part of our stewardship, let us consistently and fervently pray that the power of Satan over the minds of Muslims may be utterly broken. By praying like this you will be a great evangelist, a great missionary to the Muslim world!

Lee Turner, who was a missionary serving in Pakistan for 15 years, has for the past several years
continued his ministry to Urdu-speaking Muslims through the medium of radio. His ministry,
Key Communications, is headquartered in Portland, Oregon.

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