The Rejection Of Jesus as the Messiah and his Crucifixion

One of the the major theological divides that separate Islam and Christianity, and the most difficult to argue, is the crucifixion. The Qur’an does pose a challenge as there is only one reference which speaks of the Jews having boasted of killing him.

2000 years ago, when Allah kept his promise; He sent Jesus pbuh to the children of Israel: “And We sent, following in their footsteps, Jesus, the son of Mary, confirming that which came before him in the Torah; and We gave him the Gospel, in which was guidance and light and confirming that which preceded it of the Torah as guidance and instruction for the righteous.” [Qur’an, 5:46-47]

“And We did certainly give Moses the Torah and followed up after him with messengers. And We gave Jesus, the son of Mary, clear proofs and supported him with the Pure Spirit. But is it [not] that every time a messenger came to you, [O Children of Israel], with what your souls did not desire, you were arrogant? And a party [of messengers] you denied and another party you killed.” [Qur’an, 2:87] *They killed Zakariah (Zakariyya) and John (Yahya), see verse 2:61.

From a Muslim perspective, Jesus (Isa pbuh) was only sent to the Children of Israel, not to all of mankind. Some Jews accepted him and believed in him, but most of them rejected him. They still continue to reject him as the Messiah to this day.

The Qur’an declared that the Jews boasted (at that time) of having killed him by crucifixion after rejecting him as their Messiah: “And [for] their saying, “Indeed, we have killed the Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, the messenger of Allah….” [Qur’an, 4:157]

Allah declared that the Jews were deceived into believing that Jesus was killed or crucified:

“…And they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but [another] was made to resemble him to them. And indeed, those who differ over it are in doubt about it. They have no [i.e., certain] knowledge of it except the following of assumption. And they did not kill him, for certain.” [Qur’an, 4:157

Well then, what happened to Jesus?

The Qur’an declared that the Jews did not kill Jesus: “…but they killed him not…”, they did not crucify him: “…nor did they crucify him….” [Qur’an, 4:157]

Secondly, it declared that Allah reclaimed him [i.e., took his soul]:

“[Mention] when Allah said, “O Jesus, indeed I will take you and raise you to Myself and purify you from those who disbelieve…” [Qur’an, 3:55]

If Allah took the soul of Jesus and did not return it, then that would have constituted death. The Qur’an affirms that Allah does return some souls after having taken them from the body:

“Allah takes the souls at the time of their death, and those that do not die [He takes] during their sleep. Then He keeps those for which He has decreed death (i.e the soul is not allowed to return to the body) and the others releases (i.e., he returns the soul to their bodies) for a specified term. Indeed in that are signs for a people who give thought.” [Qur’an, 39:42]

This took place in the case of Jesus, Allah took the soul while he was still on the cross, thus convincing those who were observing the event to believe that Jesus was dead and returned his soul after he was taken down from the cross and when no one was around to observe. He was then taken up into the heavens.

“[Mention] when Allah said, “O Jesus, indeed I will take you and raise you to Myself and purify you from those who disbelieve…” [Qur’an, 3:55]

When they saw him “die” on the cross, it was confirmed to them that he was an impostor. They were convinced that he couldn’t have been the Messiah since the Torah itself had declared that whoever died by hanging was the ‘cursed’ of Allah:

“His body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but thou shalt in any wise bury him that day; (for he that is hanged is accursed of God;) that thy land be not defiled, which the LORD thy God giveth thee for an inheritance.” [Deuteronomy 21:23]

Recent studies done by Christian scholars have shown that Jesus was alive when he was taken down from the cross: The Jesus Conspiracy: The Turin Shroud and the Truth About the Resurrection and The Turin Shroud Is Genuine: The Irrefutable Evidence Updated. The Shroud is genuinely that of Christ, dating back to the 1st. century A.D. Both argue that the Shroud shows that Jesus’ heart was still beating when he was wrapped in the shroud. In 1978, a person named John Reban published a book about this matter: Inquest on Jesus Christwhich appeared on the bestseller’s list.

Reference: Jerusalem in the Qur’an, Imran N. Hosein

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