Who is the Author of the Bible?
Muslims are obligated to believe in all Inspired Books that God has sent to serve humanity, as delivered through His Prophets. Some of the Revelations include the Torah; the Revelation sent with the Prophet Moses PBUH to the Children of Israel, the Psalms (Zabur in Arabic), which was sent with the Prophet David PBUH to the Children of Israel, and the Gospel (Injeel in Arabic) which was sent with the Prophet Jesus PBUH to the Children of Israel, all in which are no longer in existence today as they were never preserved. God’s final Book, which exists today, is the Holy Quran sent with Prophet Muhammad PBUH sent to our nation.
Inspiration or Revelation comes to God’s Human Prophets either directly or through an intermediary of the Angel Gabriel, who brings the Revelation to them. Every religion that believes in God also believes in Revelation. God’s Books to humanity are a collective reference point to the way of life God has prescribed. They teach humanity about God and His Attributes, the purpose of life, the obligations and Commandments of God, prohibitions, exhortations, stories, parables, reminders, descriptions of the afterlife, Paradise and Hell, the creation of the Universe, the importance of being kind to one’s parents, and much more. These Books seek to guide man through every aspect of life. God’s Books act as a guide and instructional manual regarding how one should live their life.
While Muslims must believe in the Revelation that came with these mighty Prophets of God, we must distinguish between the original Revelations which these Prophets came down with and the present-day Bible. The present-day Gospels, known as the Evangels — Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John — are not the same Revelations God sent down with the Prophet Jesus PBUH, nor is the Old Testament today the Revelation sent with Prophet Moses PBUH, in which God commands us to believe.
The Holy Quran renders it an obligation to believe in the Revelation that came down with Jesus Christ, but it has been lost and is no longer in existence today. The original Revelation, known in Arabic as the Injil, meaning “Glad Tidings” or Evangelion in Greek, was God’s Revelation, whereas what we now have is a Bible that contains a mixture of words from Prophets, historians, scholars, many unknown and random men, including malicious inserts and deletions made throughout time for people’s agenda and political and financial gain. Whereas these Books may still contain traces of truth, the Gospel does not stand in its original revealed form. No divine Revelation exists today in its original form as revealed when the Prophet lived, except for the Holy Quran. God warns in his final testament, the Holy Quran:
“So, woe to those who write the ‘scripture’ with their own hands, then say, ‘this is from Allah,’ to exchange it for a small price. Woe to them for what their hands have written and woe to them for what they earn” (Quran 2:79)
The Bible contains commandments, prohibitions, stories, prophecies, words of prophets, rulings, and more. The books of the Bible are divided into the Old Testament and the New Testament. The Old Testament is said by Christians to have been received through the Prophets before Jesus Christ and starts with the creation of the Heavens and Earth, our Father Adam and Mother Eve, and ends just before the birth of Jesus Christ. Christians believe the New Testament to have been written by inspiration after the time of Jesus. It contains references to the birth of Christ, his disciples, prophecies of the last days, the second coming, and information regarding the hereafter. Christian denominations do not agree on what is considered the “inspired books of God.” Protestants believe that 66 truly inspired books make up the Bible, while Catholics believe in the existence of 73. For many generations, the disciples and first Christians followed neither the 66 books of the Protestants nor the 73 books of the Catholics, as the Church did not officially approve the present-day Books until centuries after the departure of Jesus Christ. This means that many Christians lived without ever knowing the New Testament.
No Christian Biblical scholar believes that God or Jesus Christ wrote the present-day Gospels, and they all acknowledge that others wrote it after Jesus’ departure. The Jews believe that the first five Books of the Old Testament were given to the Prophet Moses PBUH, but it is evident that today’s Old Testament was not given or written by Prophet Moses PBUH.
One can read in Deuteronomy 34:5–6: And Moses the servant of the Lord died there in Moab, as the Lord had said. He buried him[a] in Moab, in the valley opposite Beth Peor, but to this day, no one knows where his grave is. If the Prophet Moses PBUH wrote the Old Testament, how could he have written about his death? The Old Testament was not printed until 1488, and before that, the Old Testament existed only in manuscripts, being added and constantly subtracted such that it now contains thousands of errors.
Catholics and Protestants have discovered that even the letters in the New Testament written and delivered to Churches ascribed to Paul were not all written by him. The writers of these letters never expected them to end up in the Bible. Perhaps they would have been more careful if they knew they would end up in the Bible since these letters contradict one another.
Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John did not write the Gospels. Many Christian Biblical scholars state that the Gospels’ authors are unknown, which is why the Gospels state, for example, “Gospel according to Mark” instead of “The Gospel by Mark.” The reason is that Mark did not write the Gospel of Mark; it was unknown authors who wrote what they claim Mathew, Mark, Luke, and John said. So yes, the Gospel of Mark was not written by Mark, even though many Christians assume Mark wrote it. Christian scholars admit some of the Books in the Bible have unknown authors, so why would Christians attribute those books to God?
The Gospel of Mathew was certainly not written by Mathew nor Jesus Christ. As you can see in Mathew 9:9: As Jesus went on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector’s booth. ‘Follow me’ he told him, and Matthew got up and followed him. Someone else is talking in the third person, not Mathew or Jesus Christ. Some Christians claim Mathew was writing in the third person, but if this were the case, he would be the first to do so in his time, as it was uncommon. It would not make sense for someone to create an eyewitness testimony in the third person as it renders the testimony untrustworthy. One would need to use ‘I’ or ‘we’ when making an eyewitness testimony and not speak in the third person, which would render it confusing for others.
The Bible clearly shows that Mathew and Luke plagiarized from Mark’s Gospel! In some areas of the Bible, Mathew plagiarized verbatim, meaning word for word. See Isaiah 37 and 2 Kings 19, where each verse is identical but attributed to different authors! In other areas of the Bible, it proves plagiarism with words shuffled around, but it remains very evident that Mathew plagiarized from Mark. Mathew and Luke plagiarized their works about 85% word for word from Mark! Is not Mathew supposed to be a trustworthy eye and earwitness? Mathew, the disciple, would not do such a thing as a steal!
Unlike the Holy Quran, Christians do not believe the Bible was sent down as a verbal inspiration, so one cannot say that God inspired both to convey the exact wording. Since it was not verbal inspiration, each person would have relayed the message in their own words. The Gospel of Mathew was not written by the disciple Mathew, and Christians need to stop associating the Gospel of Mathew, which was written anonymously, with the disciple Mathew! Plagiarism in the Bible is found here and throughout the text! Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John were known to be fishermen and tax collectors, all first-century Palestinians from Galilee who spoke Aramaic and were illiterate. But they supposedly wrote these manuscripts at a scholarship level of Greek. We have no evidence showing any of them spoke Greek. If they could not even read or write, how could they have written in a language they did not speak?
Some Christians believe that evidence traces reports in the Bible to specific authors, but those claims cannot be valid since there stands overwhelming evidence against them. There exists overwhelming evidence that most of the books of the Bible were not written by their assumed authors. None of the New Testament writings that survived had a signature, so we are unsure of the authorship. We have no information regarding the chain of narrators that passed the reports from one person to another to verify their reliability and trustworthiness such that we would consider these reports authentic to some degree.
In Islam, the prophetic traditions known as Hadith, which include the sayings, actions, and teachings of Prophet Muhammad PBUH, are preserved through acts of memory, practice, and writing. Hadith is taught by a teacher who learned it from his teacher; ultimately, it can be traced back to the companion who took it directly from the Prophet Muhammad PBUH; together, these people form a chain of narrators.
Each Hadith undergoes a science known as the Isnad that checks the chain of narrators of each Hadith to attest to the historical authenticity of a particular one. This is done chronologically, listing each person who passed the Hadith from one person to the next until we get to the prime narrator. Each narrator’s background check confirms they were upright, honest, trustworthy, sincere individuals whose integrity is unquestionable.
Scholars of Hadith impose strict qualifications on these narrators to ensure that every member of the chain of narrators is qualified to tell and pass down the Hadith. Without the list of narrators, a Hadith would not be considered authentic. If one lacks credibility, the Hadith would not be regarded as authentic.
It is also important to note that while some Hadith narrations are criticized since it involves the work of men to determine which Hadith is authentic and which is not, no criticism is leveled at the Holy Quran as it constitutes the exact word of God, preserved by God, and is separate from Hadith. Hadith was passed down and preserved with human intervention, unlike the Holy Quran, since God guarantees to take it upon Himself to safeguard and protect the text from human modification.
God did not find it fit to preserve the Revelation sent to Jesus Christ since it was meant to be followed only by the people alive during his lifetime. The Revelation was not meant to be passed down to our nation. We have the Book that we need to follow, the Holy Quran, by the same author (God, the Almighty) as the original Revelations sent with the Prophet Moses and the Prophet Jesus PBUH.
Since the Holy Quran is meant for our nation until the end of time, God has promised and taken it upon Himself to safeguard and protect his final Book from attempts to modify or change its text or message. This means that God will guard His Book against any human-made modifications, distortions, additions, subtractions, or tampering in any form. God states in the Holy Quran:
“Indeed, it is We who sent down the Qur’an, and indeed, We will be its Guardian” (Quran 15:9)
After the departure of Jesus Christ, some historians, new converts, and people claiming they were eyewitnesses and disciples started to write narrations about Jesus Christ and what he said, including passages about his birth, upbringing, teachings, and departure. These narrations are like what Muslims call Seerah of Prophet Muhammad (the Biography of Prophet Muhammad PBUH). The texts are not divine; historians and scholars write about events during the time of the Prophet for the benefit of other generations to come. Many narrations across the land were written by men and never were initially taken as the Word of God.
The Bible was not revealed in the English language, nor does it contain the verbatim word of God. Today’s Bible is only a man-made effort to translate and compile thousands of fragments of the original manuscripts found in Koine Greek, which is not commonly spoken today, and the manuscripts only backdate to the fourth century and not during the time of Jesus Christ and his disciples. These manuscripts were not in Aramaic, the language of Jesus Christ and his disciples. Ancient translations were also found in other languages, such as Latin Vulgate. These translations were untrustworthy as they were not similar and contradicted each other, making it very difficult for biblical scholars to assess the manuscripts and determine what the writers were trying to convey. Some writings of the early church fathers exist today as well.
When one language is translated to another, meanings are often lost. Since languages are constantly changing, meanings are assumed that were not originally intended due to the differences in the languages. Words have many shades of meanings, and a translator chooses one above another, limiting or expanding the range of the original intended meaning, especially when doing so in a time without dictionaries.
Different scribes worked over the years, with many attempting to make grammatical or other changes simply because the theology did not correlate with the person’s theology making the edits. For example, the words “son” and “lord” in the English context have a different connotation than those in Aramaic and Greek. This is one of the reasons for the confusion about Jesus Christ being “the son of God” and “Lord.”
Since the Bible consists of man-made cut and pasted text from ancient manuscripts found in the Fourth Century AD and after, different versions are in print, and attempts have been made to translate and compile these manuscripts. These attempts were translated by individuals whose honesty, qualifications, and knowledge are unknown. So, the modern-day English Bible is a translation of what someone may have heard someone else say, who may have written it down in a different language, translated into another language, then again to another language. As a result, Bibles come in different sizes, contain different texts, and reveal thousands of errors and contradictions. We do not have in our possession a text in Aramaic, the language spoken by Jesus Christ, that dates to the life of Jesus Christ, except for a handful of words in that regard.
How can Christians say that a particular English translation of the Bible is the Word of God when their scholars are reduced to debating which version is the most accurate and correct? Unlike the Holy Quran, today’s Bible is not the verbatim Word of God but rather the word of men attempting to translate old manuscripts they found in languages that Jesus Christ and his disciples did not speak. These manuscripts were found years after the departure of Christ by unknown authors.
Modern Christian scholars recognize that the Old and New Testaments have been altered, distorted, and changed during the last centuries. They acknowledge that this text contains words of man and not the Divine Being. After the departure of Jesus Christ, Paul and his Church altered his words and teachings. The Scriptures and teaching were modified to conform with Paul’s theology and not the theology taught by Jesus Christ.
The Holy Quran is the primary source of Islam for all Muslims. Unlike the Bible, the Holy Quran is the verbatim Word of God. Since the Holy Quran is the Word of God and unique in content and style, it cannot be translated; therefore, any translation is to be taken only as an interpretation of the meanings of the Holy Quran and not the actual Quranic text that God sent. Different translations of the Holy Quran help non-Arabic-speaking audiences comprehend its meaning. Distinctions must be drawn between the Holy Quran revealed by God in the Arabic language, the verbatim Word of God, and translations attempted by men to convey its meaning to those who do not speak Arabic. Any translations do not qualify as the Holy Quran in its true and pure form; it is merely a translation and explanation of the original masterwork authored by the Almighty. A translation of the Holy Quran is not the Word of God.
Since each translation of the Holy Quran is not the original work and is only human-made in content, it is an imperfect translation bound to contain errors. Some translations may be superior to others in linguistic style or interpretations. Still, there is only One Holy Quran, and it is in the Arabic language, a language still commonly spoken today, as revealed to the Prophet Muhammad PBUH by the Angel Gabriel. It has no errors nor contradictions because it is the actual Word of God. God is perfect and makes no mistakes.
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