Truth That Matters

"What will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul?" - Jesus Christ

QUESTIONS MUSLIMS ASK

Did Jesus claim to be divine? What about other Biblical authors?

Hasn't the Bible been corrupted?

The failure of Islamic apologists to point out who did this, when, where, why, which parts of the Bible, and to what extent exposes this claim as hollow. Those who say that the Bible is corrupted also need to provide self-consistent answers to the obvious counter-questions:
  • Did Allah give the "original" Bible?
  • Did he promise to preserve it?
  • Did Allah change his "scripture preservation policy" between the time of the Bible's writing and the time of the Koran?
  • Why did Allah leave humanity with no authentic revelation until 7th century AD?
  • Why do Muslim apologists use the Bible to substantiate their claims if it has been corrupted? [Like claiming that the Bible has references to Muhammad?]
  • What about the corruption of the Koran?
See What's so great about the Bible? for reasons as to why Biblical Christians believe that the Bible is the unaltered, final, complete word of God.
 
It is also worth checking the history of this claim.
 
The testimony of the Koran:
  • Muhammad looks for support in the Bible: "...the Prophet who can neither read nor write, whom they will find described in the Torah and the Gospel (which are) with them..." (Surah 15:157).
  • Allah asks Muhammad to cross-check his revelations with the Bible: "If you (Muhammad) doubt what We have revealed to you, ask those who have been reading the Book before you" (Surah 10:94)
  • The Koran claims to confirm the Bible: "There comes to the Jews a scripture [the Koran] from Allah confirming the scriptures in their possession" (Surah 2:89). Also: "it is a confirmation of that which was before it" (Surah 10:37). Obviously, it would not be possible for the Koran to confirm the Bible unless an authentic Bible existed at the time of Muhammad!
  • Allah claims to watch over the Bible: "unto thee have We revealed the Scripture with the truth, confirming whatever Scripture was before it, and a watcher over it." (Surah 5:48)
  • Allah directs Jews and Christians to follow the Bible: "O People of the Scripture! Ye have naught (of guidance) till ye observe the Torah and the Gospel and that which was revealed unto you from your Lord." (Surah 5:68). Also see Surah 3:93.
  • Muhammad respected the Bible as divine revelation: 
The testimony of Muhammad: The Hadith, Sunan Abu Dawad, Book 38, Number 4434, narrates an incident in which Muhammad confessed that he believed in the Torah, and he treated it with the utmost respect. Thus, Muhammad considered as authentic the Bible of his day, not just the Bible as originally revealed. We have Bible manuscripts dating from before Muhammad, so we know that the Bible has not been corrupted after Muhammad.
 
The testimony of early Muslim scholars: Scholars such as Ali al Tabari, Amr al-Ghakiz, Al Masudi, etc. accepted the authenticity of the Bible. The Islamic scholar Fakhruddin Razi (AD 1150-1210) made the following statement on the authority of Ibn Abbas, Muhammad's nephew:-
"The Jews and early Christians were suspected of altering the text of the Taurat and Injil; but in the opinion of eminent doctors and theologians, it was not feasible thus to corrupt the text, because those scriptures were generally known and widely circulated, having been handed down from generation to generation. No interpolation could therefore be made in them..."
However, in about 1000 AD, the Muslim apologist Ibn Khazem noticed that the Koran and the Bible disagree with each other. He therefore invented the theory that the Bible has been corrupted.

We summarize the situation as follows:
  • Muslim apologists who make claims about the Bible being corrupted have failed to provide supporting information.
  • They have also failed to answer the obvious questions that this claim raises.
  • This claim was not made at the founding of Islam, but is a late innovation to rescue Muhammad from self-contradiction.
  • There are independent evidences for the authenticity and preservation of the Bible.
  • Therefore, dear Muslim reader, don't believe this claim. Read the Bible yourself and let God, its Author, speak to you.

Doesn't Islam bring peace? This proves it comes from the true God

First of all, there is a play of words here. To the modern mind, "peace" is the calm state of affairs that results when people agree to disagree courteously and tolerate others with different viewpoints. But Islamic peace refers to the peace that supposedly results when everyone submits to Islam. Muslim apologists are thus guilty of misrepresentation.
 
Secondly, Islam usually brings war and bloodshed, not peace: At any time, most of the violent hot-spots in the world are Muslim nations. 2012 witnessed the "Arab Spring" - Arab Muslims killing each other (in protest of decades of Muslims oppressing Muslims). The deadly enmity between the Fatah and Hamas (the two factions of Arab Palestinians) is a classic example to show how Islam does not bring peace. The Islamic State has been butchering other Muslims ever since its inception. Shia-Sunni violence has continued from the time of Muhammad's death till today. In the first image, IS Muslims are killing Muslims (September, 2014). In the second image, from October, 2014, Israeli Jews are treating Muslim victims of Syria's civil war (again Muslims fighting against Muslims). Although I do not endorse Judaism, it is obvious that Judaism is closer to the true God than Islam.
 
Thirdly, the peace of Islam (in the few cases it occurs) is inferior to the peace in other countries. Even in Islamic countries such as Saudi Arabia where there is no war, people live in fear of offending the moral police and having to pay with their lives and limbs. The absence of free press and democracy in Islamic countries also shows that Islam does not bring real peace. Muslims are immigrating en mass to Western democracies with a Christian heritage (for obvious reasons).
 
To summarize, Islam's failure to bring real peace and quality of life in the nations that embrace it show that it does not come from the true God, who is benevolent.

Doesn't the freedom of choice in the Bible lead to immorality? This proves that Biblical Christianity is false!

For those of us Indians who travel between India and the Persian Gulf, the following is a familiar sight: young Arab or Indian Muslim women board a flight in a Muslim country, dressed in burqas. Once the flight lands in Mumbai, they dump their burqas under the aircraft seats and step out with garish make-up and immodest clothing. What does this illustrate? Freedom of choice brings out the true colors of people. The Mumbai clothes express what the girls really are, whereas their burqas are merely a facade constructed to avoid lashes and bullets.

God deals with moral realities of the heart, not external facades (1 Samuel 16:7, James 2:14). Thus, God will give no credit to these woman for her modest burqa. "Morality under compulsion" is no morality at all in the sight of God; thus, freedom of choice does not bring in immorality - it merely opens our eyes to see who is truly moral.

Islamic societies where there is no force are highly immoral. For example, Afghanistan is the pedophilia hub of Asia, and Saudi oil-rich elites (who are above the law) spend their time in drunken sex orgies.  In contrast, although sexual immorality abounds in the West today (because of its embrace of atheism), vestiges of its Christian past are still seen in its better law enforcement, low levels of corruption, value for human life, equal status of women and men, freedom, strict laws against sexual abuse, etc.

Doesn't Islam bring prosperity? [This shows that it comes from the true God!]

No it doesn't. Oil does, though, and many Islamic countries have lots of oil. Prosperity in some Muslim countries that does not arise out of oil is due to free market policies followed by their leaders. The concept of a free market economy was developed in Bible-influenced countries such as America because the Bible endorses free market economics.

Doesn't the rapid growth of Islam show that it is true?

No. The number of people believing in anything certainly does not establish its truth. The growth of Islam is not due to its veracity but due to the following factors:
  • Firstly, Muslims have more children than others.
  • Secondly, Islamic apologists have a powerful propaganda machine powered by oil money - Islam is actively propagated in countries that provide freedom of expression because of their Christian past (read Europe and America) but the same Islamic agents kill anyone who tries to propagate other faiths in Muslim-majority lands. In fact, in most Muslim countries, non-Muslims are being horribly persecuted just for being non-Muslims.
  • Thirdly, Muslims have often obliterated non-Muslim populations in the lands they have invaded (Lebanon and Egypt are classic examples).
  • Fourthly, the aggressive nature of Islam makes it appealing to convicts and rebellious youngsters.
  • Fifthly, Islam carries a death penalty for leaving Islam. It is an open secret that were it not for this apostasy law, most "Muslims" would leave Islam. Muslims are invited to refute this claim by campaigning to remove the apostasy law and restrictions on propagating other faiths in Islamic countries.
  • Sixthly: The Stockholm Syndrome is the phenomenon of people joining a movement that they feel is terrifying or irresistible (if you can't beat them, join them). This phenomenon is also responsible for some conversions to Islam.

And finally: when you count the number of Muslims, are you sure that everyone you include is really Muslim?

Didn't Islam spread by peaceful means? Muslims used force only when they encountered rulers who refused to let their subjects consider Islam.

Exactly the opposite is true. After Muhammad died, most Arabs wanted to leave Islam, so Muhammad's followers butchered them in the so called "apostasy wars". The fact that of Muhammad's first four successors, Abu Bakr was the only one not murdered by fellow Muslims is by itself testimony to the insane violent power struggles even within Islam. Having subdued Arabia, Islam spread by the sword or by asking populations to choose between converting to Islam or being Dhimmis and this continues to be Islamic policy today. If Islam advocated freedom of choice, why don't rulers of Islamic countries today allow their citizens to be evangelized by those of other faiths? Why are Christian websites blocked in Islamic countries? If Islamic evangelists wanted individuals to freely consider Islam, they would have approached individuals, and the rulers would hardly notice unless many converted (this is exactly what happened with Christianity in the Roman Empire).

Why are Christian countries like America oppressing Muslim nations?

America has had a lot of Christian influence (that is why it became so rich and powerful, and one of the best places in the world to live). But in the last century, America has turned away from the Bible to atheism. Even among those Americans who claim to believe in God or who claim to be Christian, the percentage of those who are actually Christian in the Biblical sense is small. Thus, the majority of American policy makers are NOT Christian (in the Biblical sense). Hence, the actions of American politicians cannot be linked with the Bible. How to distinguish between true and false Christianity? and Christianity has inspired a lot of evil, so it must be false!

In the Old Testament, we read about how God chose the nation of Israel to be His people. In the New Testament, God established the church, which has NOTHING to do with politics (according to the Bible). The Lord Jesus never gave any instructions to politicians, let alone asking them to declare war on other countries, or advance their "oil" related interests! So I plead with you: do not let American policy or any other actions of supposed Christians take away your eyes from the Bible. Read and evaluate the Bible for what it is, not for what other people may be doing in its name.

Why do Christians support the Israeli occupation of Palestine?

A true Christian is one who has carefully examined the Bible, and being convinced of its truth, has submitted himself to the God of the Bible (no one is born a Christian). Thus, true Christians value facts. In this case, the facts clearly show that it is right for Israel to occupy the land. The Lord Jesus did not give his disciples the job of campaigning for Israel (or any other political agenda); we merely observe facts, and note how remarkably Biblical prophecy about Israel is being fulfilled in front of our eyes.
 
You may want to verify the above facts on your own. However, realize that there are questions of greater personal importance: Is Islam really true? Or is Biblical Christianity true? I encourage you to investigate these questions first.

Is Muhammad authenticated by flying to heaven and splitting the moon?

Three verses in the Koran mention that Muhammad went on a journey and flew to heaven, without mentioning any time or place. The "farthest mosque" mentioned in these verses is assumed by Muslims to be the Al Aqsa mosque. But this cannot be since this mosque was built 20 years after Muhammad died. There is a one line statement in the Koran that Allah split the moon through Muhammad (in the unknown past). This is not an eye-witness account, and it has no surrounding context. Thus, these incidents which supposedly authenticate Muhammad as a prophet have no credibility. Besides, elsewhere in the Koran (17:96) we read that Muhammad will have no authentication except Allah and the Koran (so what is the point of such signs?). Such a demand for blind faith is of course, absurd.

Why do you say that Islam started in the 7th century AD? Islam started from the beginning of the world when Allah made Adam!

It is a fact of history that the Koran was written only in the 7th century AD. It is also a fact that Islam has no real resemblance to any religion or book before it. For instance, Islam is fundamentally different from the Bible. The major part of the Bible was written more than a thousand years before Muhammad claimed to get the Koran from God through Gabriel. Most things that the Koran writes about Biblical characters like Adam, Moses, etc. disagree with the eye-witness, God-breathed accounts of the Bible. Although the Koran presents these Biblical authors as Muslims, their beliefs, as recorded by them in the Bible, are very different from the teaching of the Koran. Biblical authors are unanimous that their God is JEHOVAH (rendered LORD in English Bibles), and thus were not Muslims by any stretch of imagination. There are also major differences between Allah and Jehovah.

Thus, Islam was founded at the time of Muhammad, not Adam.  It is the Bible, which is "the record of heaven and earth" (Genesis 2:4), and thus Biblical faith began at the time of Adam.

In the Koran, violence is prescribed only for self-defense!

  • Quran (9:41) - "Go forth, light-armed and heavy-armed, and strive with your wealth and your lives in the way of Allah! That is best for you if ye but knew."  See also the verse that follows (9:42) - "If there had been immediate gain (in sight), and the journey easy, they would (all) without doubt have followed thee, but the distance was long, (and weighed) on them"
  • Quran (17:16) - "And when We wish to destroy a town, We send Our commandment to the people of it who lead easy lives, but they transgress therein; thus the word proves true against it, so We destroy it with utter destruction."
  • Quran (2:216) - "Fighting is prescribed for you, and ye dislike it. But it is possible that ye dislike a thing which is good for you, and that ye love a thing which is bad for you. But Allah knoweth, and ye know not." [From the Hadith, we know that this verse was "delivered" when Muhammad was motivating his followers to raid merchant caravans]

Does this sound like self-defense?!

"Jihad" refers to a spiritual struggle, not physical violence!

Really?!

  • Quran (8:12) - "I will cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Therefore strike off their heads and strike off every fingertip of them"
  • Quran (33:60-62) - "If the hypocrites, and those in whose hearts is a disease, and the alarmists in the city do not cease, We verily shall urge thee on against them, then they will be your neighbors in it but a little while.  Accursed, they will be seized wherever found and slain with a (fierce) slaughter."
  • Quran (48:17) - "There is no blame for the blind, nor is there blame for the lame, nor is there blame for the sick (that they go not forth to war). And whoso obeyeth Allah and His messenger, He will make him enter Gardens underneath which rivers flow; and whoso turneth back, him will He punish with a painful doom." [That is, the blind, lame and sick are exempted from jihad]

So called violent passages in the Koran refer to a particular war-time situation.

The violent verses were given in a particular situation but there is nothing in these verses to confine their application to that particular situation. As an example:-

Surah 9:5 asks Muslims to "slay the idolaters (non-Muslims) wherever you find them". Muslim apologists will tell you that this was delivered at the time of battle of Badr. Note that Muhammad did not start out as a king. Thus, this battle (just like all the other battles he commanded) took place not for political reasons but only because Muhammad wanted all the Arabians to become Muslims but they weren't willing. Muhammad was acting according to Allah's commandment to "establish Islam" (Surah 6:72). The same commandment applies today and idolaters exist today as well! So obviously, the same directive to slay non-Muslims applies today!

What about the Bible?

Conclusion: Particular situations were only the occasion for the invention of violent Koranic verses. However, these verses established principles that are applicable always. 

Being a religious book, the Koran should not be interpreted literally. Thus, the violent verses don't really mean what they say.

The idea that religious books should not be taken literally but figuratively was invented in 18th century Europe by people who wanted something in between traditional religion and materialistic atheism. This idea was unknown in Muhammad's time. How do we know? By examining how Muhammad interpreted the Koran! During the last 10 years of his life Muhammad commanded 65 battles in an attempt to force Islam on others. We also have his sayings in the Hadith and his biography, which show that he took the violent verses literally.

The Koran has lots of peaceful verses as well, not just violent verses!

No. It has only one: "There is no compulsion in religion” (2:256). So how does this verse fit in with the many violent verses? In this context, we must mention the principle of abrogation in the Koran - the relationship between Koranic verses that were delivered at different times.
  1. Some Islamic apologists claim that abrogation is not an annulment - the newer verses merely clarify or refine the older ones. If this is the case, they should not contradict the earlier ones. Then the simultaneous occurrence of both violent and peaceful verses in the Koran is a self-contradiction, proving that the Koran (and therefore, Islam) is false. 
  2. Other Islamic apologists claim that abrogation amounts to annulment; later Koranic verses annul or supersede earlier verses. So which verses annul which? It happens that the peaceful verses are abrogated by the violent ones which came later (when Muhammad was powerful and able to attack those who disagreed with him - a lot had changed in 23 years!). Thus, the premise that Islam is violent remains.
The law of abrogation also leads to a basic question: If the Koran really came from God, why is something like abrogation even needed? Why can't Allah give a coherent revelation? In contrast, the Bible does not have abrogation, but it has clearly delineated phases, in which God is doing different things. For instance, the ancient Israelis were commanded to offer sacrifices looking forward to Christ's death. Christians are instead commanded to commemorate Christ's death with the Lord's Supper. To summarize: the presence of one "peaceful" verse in the Koran does not rescue Islam from being false and/or violent.

The 1 billion Muslims who are not violent refute your claim that Islam is violent.

Islam is defined by the Koran, the Hadith, and Muhamad, not the behavior of a suitably chosen section of Muslims. But why are so many Muslims not violent if their Koran asks them to be violent?

They don't know what the Koran really teaches: My wonderful, peaceful Muslim friends belong to this category. In Hindu India, most Muslim preachers don't have the guts to preach violence. Indian Muslims just recite a few verses from the Koran in Arabic (which they do not understand) during religious rituals. They don't read and study it in English or Hindi. So some Indian Muslims don't know that the Koran preaches violence.

There are no available objects of violence; most of the "1 billion Muslims" live in Muslim majority nations in the Middle East where the non-Muslim population has either been driven away or exterminated centuries ago.

Appearing peaceful is a strategic choice. Even Muhammad was peaceful when he was weak. He signed a peace treaty with the non-Muslim inhabitants of Mecca. In his heart he was not peaceful; the peace treaty proved to be an opportunity for him to buy time to strengthen himself. Once this was done, he broke the treaty and became violent. The following show that appearing peaceful is indeed a strategic choice:-

  • The failure of the so called "moderate Muslims" to condemn terrorism. "Geopolitical issues", "arrogant Western policies", "Muslim frustration", etc. are used to justify the suicide bombing of innocent citizens, including children.
  • Attempts to sweep Islamic violence under the carpet. Can you show me any Muslim organisation cataloging Islamic violence and appealing to violent Muslims that they should stop the violence because Islam is peaceful?
  • The refusal of the so called "moderate Muslims" to cooperate with concerned leaders such as Gerard Batten and Geert Wilders who call for Muslims to delete or reinterpret the violent verses in the Koran

Most of the "1 billion Muslims" are not devout enough to risk violent death. The Koran condemns such Muslims.

A significant percentage of the "1 billion Muslims" are not really Muslims! They are just "going through the motions" of Islam because if they express their true feelings, they will be killed (Islam prescribes death for apostasy). Don't believe me? Then please cancel the death penalty for apostasy and invite Muslims to openly express their skepticism about Islam!

Frank Gaffney of the Center for Security Policy and other experts estimate that 15 percent of the 1.6 billion Muslims worldwide believe that Islam is violent. Think about it: 240 million Muslims, the devout kind, the ones who know Arabic, read the Koran - they are inspired to be violent. Are you saying that they are all getting their semantics wrong?

To conclude, the supposed "peacefulness" of most Muslims does not vindicate Islam.  

Is the Koran a masterpiece of Arabic literature?

The validity of such an assessment depends on who is making it, and the conditions under which it is made. So let us examine both.

More than 99% of those who speak Arabic live in the Middle East and/or belong to Muslim communities. This means that if they speak unfavorably about the Koran, they risk being tortured to death. The remaining people who speak Arabic consist of Western or other non-Arab scholars and historians who may visit Arab lands for their work or research. Daniel Pearl is a good example to show what can happen to a Western or non-Arab professional in Arab/Muslim countries if he does not agree with Arab or Muslim views. Thus, claims of the Koran being a masterpiece of Arabic literature are similar to the tributes of North Koreans to their "dear leader" who keeps them starving and murders all those who disagree with him - these claims lack credibility because they are made under duress. Let Islamic countries and communities provide the freedom of speech for their citizens. Then such claims can be taken seriously. In the meantime, let's quote someone brave: German secular scholar Salomon Reinach:-
"From the literary point of view, the Koran has little merit. Declamation, repetition, puerility, a lack of logic and coherence strike the unprepared reader at every turn. It is humiliating to the human intellect to think that this mediocre literature has been the subject of innumerable commentaries, and that millions of men are still wasting time in absorbing it."
Let us also listen to Dayanand Saraswati, Indian scholar who, writing in 1883, was under no Islamic intimidation:
"Having thus given a cursory view of the Koran, I lay it before the sensible person with the purpose that they should know what kind of a book the Koran is. I have no hesitation to say that it cannot be the work of either God or of a learned man, nor can it be a book of knowledge. Here its very vital defect has been exposed with the object that people may not waste their life falling into its imposition. The Koran is the result of ignorance, the source of animalization of human beings, a fruitful cause of destroying peace, an incentive to war, and propagator of hostility among men and a promoter of suffering in society. As to defect of repetition, the Koran is its store." 
English translations of the Koran certainly do not give the impression of a literary masterpiece. I know because I have read them.

Suppose (for the sake of argument) that the Koran is a literary masterpiece in Arabic. This does not constitute any evidence of its divine origin. There is nothing miraculous in a trader from a rich family producing a literary marvel, just as there is nothing miraculous in engineering graduates such as Chetan Bhagat writing best selling novels or mathematicians like Leonardo da Vinci producing fabulous paintings.

An example far more remarkable than Muhammad is John Bunyan, who wrote The Pilgrim's Progress. He came from a family that sold pots and pans; he had no artistic or literary credentials, but The Pilgrim's Progress is indeed a literary masterpiece. It has become one of the most widely read and translated books in the world, despite not claiming to be divine revelation and not using force as a means of promoting it.

To summarize: there is no credible evidence that the Koran is a literary masterpiece, and even if it is, it does not authenticate Muhammad as a prophet, and it does not establish itself to be divine revelation.

If Islam is violent, how is it that there are Christians in Muslim-majority countries?

The violent nature of Islam has to do with the nature of its defining texts and not the success of radical (devout) Muslims in implementing the violent verses in these defining texts. In Iran, the number of Christians is growing; not because the Muslim government is so tolerant of them but despite the imprisonment, torture, death penalties, church closures, etc. The number is growing because many Muslims are recognizing the falsehood of Islam and the truth of the Bible.

Thus, the presence of a few non-Muslims in Muslim countries does not prove that Islam is peaceful. It proves that there are a few people brave enough to stand for the truth even when falsehood is violently enforced.

Is Islam so different from the Biblical Christianity? Both are Abrahamic religions.

In popular culture, Christianity, Islam and Judaism are called "Abrahamic religions", all supposedly derived from Abraham's faith. Delve a little deeper, and you find that the reality is completely different.

Let us take up the Jews first. John the Baptist told the Jews that mere descent from Abraham counts for nothing (Luke 3:8). The Lord Jesus pointed out that the Jews of his day were far removed from Abraham's faith (John 8:39-40). Abraham anticipated Jesus Christ and his sacrificial death (John 8:56, Genesis 22:14), while the Jews utterly rejected the idea that Jesus would die for their sins and be raised again. Jesus dismissed first century Jewish religious customs as vain "traditions" (Mark 7:13) that opposed God's word that had come through Abraham, Moses and others. Modern Judaism has evolved out of those same "traditions". It may be "Talmudic", but it is not "Abrahamic".

Like Judaism, Islam also rejects Jesus for who he claimed to be, and what he said he would do (die and rise again for mankind's salvation). Islamic beliefs such as "Allah" as the name of God, good works as the criterion for going to heaven, etc. are completely foreign to Abraham. Abraham knew God as JEHOVAH, and was justified by his belief in God, not by good works (Genesis 15:6). In addition, virtually all the statements in the Koran about Abraham are false - they contradict Abraham's original record in the Bible written by his immediate descendants. Further, notice the following similarities between Islam and the ancient Middle Eastern (non-Abrahamic) religions of Israel's neighbors (which God condemned Israel for straying in to).
  1. Moloch, the Ammonite god required children as human sacrifices. Allah requires children and Muslim youngsters to get themselves killed as suicide bombers.
  2. The gods of the Canaanites, Arabs, Babylonians, etc. were represented by idols. Muslims revere a black stone in Mecca which they claim fell from heaven.
  3. In Daniel 3, the Bible records how the king of Babylon (Iraq) tried to force his non-Abrahamic religion on all the people he had conquered. Islam spread by the sword - victims of Islamic conquest had to either convert, die, or live a life of humiliation as "dhimmis" under their Islamic rulers.
  4. Polygamy was acceptable among the Canaanites. Polygamy is sanctioned in Islam.
  5. Women were oppressed in Canaanite culture. The oppression of women in Islam is well known.
  6. Sexual immorality (temple prostitution) was a standard feature of ancient Middle Eastern religion. The Islamic heaven is a sex paradise.
  7. Ritual consumption of alcohol was a part of Canaanite worship. Wine is a major attraction in Allah's paradise.
  8. Middle Eastern gods were connected with the moon, sun, stars, etc. Notice the crescent moon and star above the Canaanite goddess. The Islamic symbol has a moon and star.
As you can see, Islam is not "Abrahamic". Roman Catholicism and Orthodox Christianity, having committed untold atrocities on the Jews (Abraham's descendants), can scarcely be called "Abrahamic".

The only Abrahamic religion is Biblical Christianity. This is because the rest of the Bible elaborates on (and is consistent to) the "Abrahamic" faith described in Genesis, the first book of the Bible.

How can you believe that God became a man and died on a cross?!

The correct reason to believe things (the Nativity of Christ or anything else) is because there is evidence that they are true, not because they fit into our preconceived notions of what reality should be like. Details

What is the meaning of the word "begotten"?

According to the Greek dictionary, the Greek word rendered "begotten" means to give birth, or cause to come to life.

The Lord Jesus is called the begotten Son of God the Father. However, this does not refer to his earthly birth. How do we know?
  • The Son of God existed eternally with the Father (John 1:1-3, John 8:58) - his life therefore did not start at his earthly birth.
  • It was the Holy Spirit (Matthew 1:18) who created the zygote in Mary's womb, not the Father. Note that the Holy Spirit is a Spirit - he did not have sex with Mary!
  • Jesus is called the Son long before he entered the world through Mary (Psalm 2:12). [So it is wrong to think in terms of a family: God the Father, Mary the mother, and Jesus the son! God has created human families to serve as an analogy for the Son and the Father. But a thing and its analogy are never identical - so it is absurd to ask: If Jesus is the Son and God the Father, who is the Mother, Aunt, etc?]
Then in what sense does "begotten" apply to Jesus Christ? It applies to his resurrection. God the Father raised him up from the dead, and thus gave him new life. How do we know? From Psalm 2:7 and Acts 13:33.
 
It is also worth noting another shade of meaning of "begotten": of the same substance. Thus, Jesus is not an "adopted son" of the Father. He has the same nature as God.