Mark Gabriel on the Nature of the Qu’ran

What happens when a Muslim converts to Christianity? Hear Mark Gabriel’s testimony with Dr. David Reagan on the show Christ in Prophecy.

Last aired on May 29, 2011.

Transcript

Dr. Reagan: What are the differences between the Quran and the Bible? What did Jesus and Mohammad have in common, and how did they differ? For the answer to these and other fascinating questions comparing Christianity and Islam, stay tuned.

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Part 1

Dr. Reagan: Greetings in the name of Jesus our blessed hope. I’m Dave Reagan, Senior Evangelist for Lamb & Lion Ministries and I am delighted to have with me once more this week a very special guest by the name of Mark Gabriel. Mark is a former professor of Islamic history at Al-Azhar University in Cairo Egypt, the world’s premier Islamic University. Welcome back Mark.

Mark Gabriel: Thank you, I am glad to be here.

Dr. Reagan: And Mark, we are very glad to have you back with us. Folks, last week we discussed Mark’s upbringing in Egypt as a Muslim. He told us that he grew up in a devout Muslim family and had the entire Quran memorized by the time he was 12 years old. He attended Al-Azhar University in Cairo, the Harvard of the Arab world, where he graduated second in a class of 6,000. He then became a professor of Islamic history at the University. He also became a Muslim Imam at a Mosque in Giza where the Pyramids are located. An Imam is the equivalent of a Christian pastor. When Mark began to publicly question some aspects of Islam he was suddenly arrested, tortured, and nearly killed before he was rescued from prison by a politically powerful uncle. When he returned home he met a Christian pharmacist who gave him a Bible. He started reading the New Testament and encountered Jesus, and he encountered a sense of inner peace like he had never experienced before. When he revealed that he had become a Christian, his father tried to kill him to save the honor of the family. He finally fled to South Africa where he was given refuge by a Christian family. Assassins pursued him to South Africa and nearly killed him. He fled to the Congo and finally came to this country where he was granted religious asylum. He now resides in Florida and travels extensively, telling the truth about the religion of Islam. Mark is also the best selling author of three books published by Charisma Press. They are: “Islam and Terrorism”, “Islam and the Jews”, and his newest, just published, “Jesus and Mohammad.”

Part 2

Dr. Reagan: Mark, most of our viewers have never read the Quran, and they don’t know really how different it is from the Bible, so fill us in, tell us, give us a comparison here between the Bible and the Quran.

Mark Gabriel: Yes, the Quran, as Muslims believe, is considered the holy book of Islam. The size of the Quran is exactly like the size of the books of the New Testament. And the book contains 114 chapters.

Dr. Reagan: Which are called “Surahs.”

Mark Gabriel: Which are called in Arabic terms, Arabic language, “Surahs.”

Dr. Reagan: OK.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly. And the book is considered, as the Muslims believe, the word of Allah, who was revealed directly from Allah to Muhammad through the angel Gabriel.

Dr. Reagan: OK. Now, how does it differ though, I mean, an average person, let’s say an average Christian has read the Bible. When you start reading the Bible, the Bible has lots of stories. It tells this story and that story and the relationship with God, the nature of God is taught through stories. But you don’t find that in the Quran.

Mark Gabriel: No, actually the Quran wasn’t really organized logically. And when the Quran usually discusses about a specific story, for example like the story of Abraham, or the story of Joseph, or the story of Moses, you are going to see that this story is all over the Quran.

Dr. Reagan: All over, it’s like somebody shot a shotgun…

Mark Gabriel: Exactly, exactly and the Quran, when they translated the Quran into English, or another foreign, non-Arabic language, they just transferred the meaning of the Quran, you see to the English or another language. But if you try to study the Quran, learn about the Quran from the English translation, you are going to miss more than 60% or maybe 70% of the real meaning of the Quran.

Dr. Reagan: I find it one of the most difficult books I’ve ever tried to read in my life because it is so disjointed, there is a sentence here, and then the next sentence may not have anything to do with that sentence and the one after it may not have anything to do with it.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly.

Dr. Reagan: It’s like in American literature we have what’s called, “Stream of consciousness writing,” where the person just writes whatever pops into his mind, and he may be talking about a carnival here and about going to church there and whatever and it just has no relationship one to the other. It’s very difficult to follow.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly, exactly.

Dr. Reagan: The Quran is supposed to be the words of Allah.

Mark Gabriel: Yes.

Dr. Reagan: The Hadith is another book in the Islamic theology. What is the Hadith?

Mark Gabriel: The Hadith is the word of Mohammad, another word, Hadith, it means, what Mohammad said and what he did. It’s just, what do you call it? It’s the record of Mohammad.

Dr. Reagan: OK.

Mark Gabriel: His life, his activity, his word, his action, his teaching, and the Muslims call it Hadith.

Dr. Reagan: So one, the Quran, is supposed to be the words of God.

Mark Gabriel: Yes.

Dr. Reagan: The other, are the words of Mohammad.

Mark Gabriel: Hadith is the words of the prophet Mohammad.

Dr. Reagan: And, are they considered to be equal or what?

Mark Gabriel: Muslims, they are required to believe in both books.

Dr. Reagan: OK.

Mark Gabriel: Muslims, it’s not enough to just believe in the Quran and decline or deny the Hadith. According to the Islamic law, if any Muslim is going to deny any of the basic teachings of Islam he will be a convert; he will be out of Islam. And Hadith is one of the most basic in the Islamic faith.

Dr. Reagan: OK. Now another difference between the Quran and the Bible is that the Bible was written by individuals like Moses, or Paul in the New Testament, where they sat down and they wrote letters or they wrote histories, or whatever. But Mohammad never did really just sit down and write the Quran, or write the Hadith.

Mark Gabriel: No.

Dr. Reagan: No, he just simply, for example with the Quran he was usually in trances and he would make statements and people would write those down.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly.

Dr. Reagan: And all that was compiled later on after his death wasn’t it?

Mark Gabriel: Exactly, yes.

Dr. Reagan: And the Hadith is just statements that were compiled by compilers, it might be statements that wives remembered, or friends remembered, or whatever, and they just kind of put them all together.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly, exactly.

Dr. Reagan: Alright, now in the Quran, there are a lot of contradictions, as well as in the Hadith, a lot of contradictions; for example, you can find verses in the Quran that talk about loving Jews and Christians.

Mark Gabriel: Yes.

Dr. Reagan: And treating them with respect.

Mark Gabriel: Yes.

Dr. Reagan: Then you can find verses that talk about killing them.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly.

Dr. Reagan: How do you account for these contradictions? Did Allah change his mind?

Mark Gabriel: Muslims justify these contradictions by an Arabic term, and the Muslim and Islamic principle. They call it “naskh.” Nesk or neska. This principle means that the future verse that is going to come is going to decline or cancel the, what do you call it, the previous verse.

Dr. Reagan: OK. So, a later verse…

Mark Gabriel: Yes.

Dr. Reagan: Would cancel out an earlier verse…

Mark Gabriel: Exactly.

Dr. Reagan: That might contradict it.

Mark Gabriel: They call it naskh. If you ask them, “But why did Allah do that?” “They will say he did that for the benefit of Muslims and for the benefit of the people.”

Dr. Reagan: For example I remember you giving me the example about alcohol.

Mark Gabriel: Yes.

Dr. Reagan: Give us that example.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly, like for example when Mohammad started to preach here about his religion, the people in Arabia at that time, there were alcoholic addicts, they loved alcohol, they could not live without alcohol. And he found this all was going to be too difficult if he was going to give them a command to stop drinking alcohol and to obey his command. So what he did, he just gave them a half way command. He said to them, “No problem, keep drinking alcohol, but when you are going to come to pray, to the Mosque, you have to stop drinking alcohol till you finish your prayer, and after you finish the prayer you can go back and drink alcohol again.” So after a while he came back to them and said, “No, this doesn’t work. No alcohol is going to be allowed any more.” And another verse came and cancelled the previous verse. And Muslims became very upset, very angry: “But how come we can’t do that?” And a later verse says, “OK, don’t worry, be patient, believe in Allah, believe in his prophet Mohammad, believe in his Quranic word and if you are going to have the ability, and you are going to stop drinking alcohol, in your life, Allah, he is not going to forget that, he will reward you with a river of alcohol in paradise, the day when he sends you to paradise.”

Dr. Reagan: So we go from just drinking alcohol occasionally to not drinking it during prayers to not drinking at all to you’re going to have a river of alcohol in heaven.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly. This is the development of the contradiction, you see, of the teaching of the Quran.

Dr. Reagan: And you find the same in the attitude toward Jews and Christians.

Mark Gabriel: Absolutely.

Dr. Reagan: At the beginning it was one of respect and honor and then, when they did not accept his revelation, he turned against them and began to argue, “You must kill them.”

Mark Gabriel: Absolutely, firstly it was a development also that was taking place on this subject and his relationship with the Jews and Christians. Firstly he started to adore Christians and Jews, saying wonderful things, “People of God, the people who carry His word, the people who protect His word.” And later he said, “Yes, you are these people, but listen, I am the final prophet who came with the final testament. You have to believe in me,” as he started to debate them and reaching out to them. So they refused. They asked him for a sign. The Quran said so: “Ask him for a sign.” “Give us a sign so that we can believe.” And he could not give a sign and he went back to Allah and cried before Allah, “Help me to perform a miracle or to give a sign to these people that they can follow me.” And Allah became very upset with him and said to him, “OK, listen, go back to these Jewish people and these Christian people, and tell them, ‘Allah gave you plenty of miracles in the Old Testament and you always rebelled against him. No more miracles. There is only one way to submit to Islam — to accept Islam, or to pay the tax, and if you refuse to do so, you will be killed.'” So it was a development also taking place in these contradictions of the teachings of the Quran toward the Christians and the Jews.

Dr. Reagan: Folks, we are going to take a brief break at this point and when we return we are going to ask Mark to tell us how Jesus is portrayed in the Quran.

Part 3

Dr. Reagan: Mark let’s talk a little about the Muslim view of Jesus. I read in the paper recently where a Muslim Imam was invited to speak at a large Christian church in the Chicago area. And when he got up to speak, the very first thing he said was, “I want you to know that we Muslims love Jesus as much as you Christians do.” Was that an accurate statement or not?

Mark Gabriel: It’s not. Absolutely it’s not, and the statement of this man is a deceitful statement. Why? Because the image of Jesus Christ in the brain of Muslims, in the Quran, in the Hadith, in the teaching of Mohammad, it’s totally different than the Biblical Jesus. The Quranic teaching and the Islamic teaching about Jesus — it’s Jesus He is the Son of Mary, He was born from Mary through a miracle performed by Allah, and he cannot be the Son of God, He cannot be God, He wasn’t crucified, He didn’t shed His blood. All the Biblical view about the identity of Jesus Christ is misinterpreted by the Quran and by the Islamic teaching. When this man makes a statement like that, he absolutely deceived the Christian congregation and the church as the Muslim Imam after September 11…

Dr. Reagan: Just trying to get them on his side.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly, deceived the world through the secular media by telling that Islam is a peaceful religion, same way.

Dr. Reagan: Let me make sure I understand this. They do believe in a miracle birth for Jesus.

Mark Gabriel: They do.

Dr. Reagan: But, the Mary that they identify is really confused, because isn’t the Mary the mother of Jesus identified in the Quran as Mary the sister of Moses?

Mark Gabriel: Exactly.

Dr. Reagan: Very confusing.

Mark Gabriel: It’s one of the historical mistakes in the Quran.

Dr. Reagan: Yeah, a lot of mistakes about the Old Testament because, I get the impression that in his travels, Mohammad probably talked to a lot of Jews, a lot of Christians, got these stories, but he got them all mixed up.

Mark Gabriel: Historical mistakes, linguistic mistakes, and as we talk about contradictions of the Quran we have to talk also about the mistakes, the historical…

Dr. Reagan: Now, to get back to Jesus for just a moment, so they view His birth as miraculous in some way or other, although it is from the wrong person.

Mark Gabriel: Yes.

Dr. Reagan: And then the argument is that He was not God in the flesh, that He was basically just a great prophet, right?

Mark Gabriel: Yes, He was considered one of the last [words in Arabic] which means, the greatest prophets, like Mohammad, Moses, Jesus, Abraham. So they consider Him one of the greatest prophets.

Dr. Reagan: But Mohammad being the final and greatest prophet.

Mark Gabriel: He is the greatest and he is the final one.

Dr. Reagan: OK. Now, did you say that they deny the crucifixion?

Mark Gabriel: They do, yes.

Dr. Reagan: Does the Quran deny the crucifixion?

Mark Gabriel: Absolutely, chapter number four explains: [Quotes in Arabic]

Dr. Reagan: So Jesus just died?

Mark Gabriel: No, He never died, He was never crucified. When the Jews tried to crucify Him, Allah took Him to Heaven, and He’s still alive in Heaven.

Dr. Reagan: Now, do they believe that there will be a Second Coming of Jesus?

Mark Gabriel: They do believe about the Second Coming of Jesus, yes.

Dr. Reagan: Tell us about that.

Mark Gabriel: But the Islamic view about the Second Coming of Jesus is totally different than the Biblical view. All of what Islam says about His Second Coming, He is going to do some things. One of these things, He’s going to come and kill all pigs around the world.

Dr. Reagan: Kill all pigs?

Mark Gabriel: All the pigs, yes.

Dr. Reagan: Are you serious?

Mark Gabriel: Yes, [quotes Arabic] This is the Hadith, the word of Mohammad.

Dr. Reagan: OK.

Mark Gabriel: And he is going to come to break the cross, any cross, wood cross…

Dr. Reagan: Break all crosses.

Mark Gabriel: All the crosses around the world.

Dr. Reagan: OK.

Mark Gabriel: And he is going to stop the [Arabic], which means to stop collecting tax from Christians, so that they can still…and he is going to bring justice to the world.

Dr. Reagan: OK.

Mark Gabriel: This is the only good point, he just picked it up from the Bible that this is their view and their belief about His second coming. It’s unbelievable.

Dr. Reagan: Now Mark, your newest book, is this one here called “Jesus and Mohammad.” This has just come out. The subtitle: “Profound differences and surprising similarities.”

Mark Gabriel: Similarities, yes.

Dr. Reagan: Let’s start with those. There are some similarities between Jesus and Mohammad?

Mark Gabriel: There are some similarities and they’re funny similarities, you see, you will admit when you hear about it. It’s not similarities in the goodness of God, no. It’s just normal similarities like the way he grew up, the way he acted when he was a little child. Like, for example, Islam speaks as the Bible told us about prophecy, prophesied about the coming Messiah — on the Islamic side they say, “There is prophecy, prophesied about ‘the coming, final prophet.'” When Jesus was a little boy and went to the Temple at the time…

Dr. Reagan: Yes, Simeon prophesied about this.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly, Simeon prophesied over Him. There is another Arabian guy, his name [Arabic] it was the cousin of his first wife. They said he prophesied about his coming, about Jesus going to the Temple and debating the Jewish leaders, religious leaders. Mohammad went to the center, the religious center of Mecca, called [Arabic] at that time, debating with religious people. So there are some similarities like that. Jesus chose 12 disciples to spread His message. Mohammad chose 12; we can say friends, or 12 leaders to lead his army and his military in exporting Islam out of Arabia…

Dr. Reagan: So you are really talking about some similarities that are not really all that significant.

Mark Gabriel: Exactly.

Dr. Reagan: But the contrasts are something else. And to get into those contrasts, tell us a story of the Muslim woman that you met in South Africa.

Mark Gabriel: [Arabic] Jesus Christ came to bring hope, to bring forgiveness, to bring peace and love. Mohammad came to bring revenge, hatred, loss, killing, bloodshed. It’s very obvious. Like for example, Jesus Christ, as the Bible tells us in John chapter 8 about the woman who committed adultery and was brought to Jesus by the Jewish people. Jewish people, they knew at that time, that this woman, according to the Law of Moses she would be stoned. But they came to test this great Preacher and Teacher in Jerusalem. What are you going to say about that? And you know the story; He confronted, He asked them, “If any one of you lives with no sin, just come and stone her.” Because they knew the fact about themselves that they were sinners, they left them in front of Him, and they just walked away. Jesus came to the woman and asked her, “Is there any one of these people who judge you?” She said, “No.” He said to her, “Neither do I go back and sin no more.” In other words, Jesus, by what He did and said to this woman, He fulfilled His word that the Son of Man came, not to kill or destroy, but to give life — that He is the Way, He is the Truth, He is the Life. He came to bring life.

Dr. Reagan: Now, what happened when a woman in adultery was brought to Mohammad?

Mark Gabriel: History repeated itself in an amazing way when 600 years later Mohammad received a Muslim woman who committed adultery, and the reason that the Muslim brought her to him was because the Islamic judgment of adultery wasn’t established yet in Islamic law. So Mohammad asked the woman, “Did you really commit adultery?” She said, “Yes prophet, and I am pregnant now.” And he asked her, “Fine, go back home, wait till you deliver the baby, and wait with your baby, nursing him or her for two years, and then bring your baby and come back to me.” She did. She delivered the baby, she nursed the baby for two years, and she carried her baby and she gave the baby a little piece of bread. You see, to eat it, just to show Mohammad that the baby, he can eat now, he is not in need of nursing any more. When she came to him, Mohammad took the child from her, commanded his friend to dig a hole in the ground, they put her in the hole, only her head was above the ground. They stoned her and killed her in front of her baby.

Dr. Reagan: Now folks, let me tell you something very amazing about this. When Mark was in South Africa, he was living with a Christian family and they invited him to go meet with a Muslim woman they had met who was living in abject poverty. And when he went in there she was greatly honored when she found out he had been a professor at Al-Azhar University. Oh, she was so honored. And she began to honor him and he said, “Well you don’t understand, I’m not a Muslim anymore, I have become a Christian.” And then she was astonished and upset, and she asked him why he would leave the Islamic religion and he told her the story. He told her the story about Jesus and Mohammad, this story he just told you, he told her that story and the woman began to weep and weep and weep. And he said, “Why are you sobbing?” She said, “I am that woman. I am that woman. I am living here in abject poverty because I committed adultery. My family is trying to kill me, I am hiding out. I want Jesus. I don’t want Mohammad.” And through the telling of that story she accepted Jesus.

Mark Gabriel: She accepted the Lord Jesus Christ. She delivered her baby. Her baby was baptized in the Baptist Church, and we just praised the Lord for that.

Dr. Reagan: Folks, the whole book, “Jesus and Mohammad,” that tells stories about amazing parallels between the life of Mohammad and Jesus where they had similar situations and shows the difference in the way in which they responded to them. Mark, our time is almost up. We have just about one minute. Would you just look directly in the camera and talk to any Muslim who may be watching this program? What would you say to any Muslim?

Mark Gabriel: I would like to say to any Muslim man or woman in any place around the world, Islam will not give you peace. Mohammad will never lead you to a right way to connect with God and to experience His love, His forgiveness, His peace. Only Jesus Christ can give you peace in your life, can forgive your sin, because He is the Lord of Lords, He is the Prince of peace, He is the forgiver. He is the one who came to tell us about the secret of Heaven. He is the one who came to connect us with the God Father. Muslims, man or woman, please think carefully about your life first — the conditions you live under, look at the miserable life which Muslims are living in, in any part around the world: hatred, bloodshed, killing, conflict, terrorists. There is only one way for you to get out of this mess, and that is just to accept the Lord Jesus Christ as your Lord and your Savior. And by meeting with Him face to face, you are going to experience the gift which you are going to receive through Him. Your sin will be forgiven, your heart will fill with love, and you are going to experience the forgiveness, and you are going to feel and experience the freedom from sin, and from the bondage of Satan. And you are going to find your way to God and you are going to find you are in the right place. I pray for you in the power of my Lord Jesus Christ, able to reach your heart in the same way He did with me.

Closing I want to thank you for tuning in this week. I hope the program has been a blessing to you and I hope you will be back with us next week. Until then, this is Dave Reagan speaking for Lamb and Lion Ministries, saying, “Look up, be watchful, for our redemption is drawing near.”

End of Program

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