Before I review the rather bizarre theories that are contained in the book, I find it interesting that people like Joel Richardson, Robert Spencer, Pamela Geller and many other so-called ‘experts’ on Islam, actually have very little knowledge about Islam and Islamic eschatology. Their only credentials are the credence given to them by an obviously unknowing and gullible audience.
False teachers demonstrate that the very savior the Islamic world is expecting is the Antichrist of Christian eschatology by using extensive quotations from Islamic texts deliberately out of context to scare Christians into fighting Islam rather than informing them of the true identity of the Antichrist.
Most Christians are aware that in Islam, as well as in Christian eschatology, Jesus will return to earth one day. Beyond this point, they generally have very little understanding about Jesus’ return, or who the ‘Islamic’ Jesus really is and the role of the Mahdi.
I am not going to address everything that Richardson says in his book. I have just picked several key items to discuss and demonstrate that his major premise is wrong.
A number of Major and Minor Signs foretell the end of days. Here are the major Signs as prophesied by Prophet Muhammad pbuh:
- Dajjal – the false Messiah or Antichrist.
- Gog and Magog.
- The beast of the earth.
- The sun will rise from the west.
- Three sinkings of the earth: one in the east, one in the west, and one in Arabia.
- A fire would come out of Yemen and would drive people to their place of assembly (for judgement)
- Jesus will descend (the Qur’an described the return of Jesus as a Sign of the hour 43:61)
These signs were not given in their chronological order. You can read the 48 signs of Qiyamah to learn the Minor Signs, which includes the spread of immorality and religious ignorance.
Who is the Mahdi?
Prophet Muhammad pbuh prophesised several events that will occur just before the advent of the Day of Judgment. He foretold the emergence of one of his descendants, an Arab, Imam al-Mahdi (the guided one): “The Prophet pbuh said, “Mahdi will be one of the descendants of Fatimah. ” [Sunan Ibn Majah]. No one knows the exact time of his appearance except Allah, but it is before the arrival of Dajjal.
The Prophet pbuh said: “Allah would raise up a man from my family who would fill this earth with justice as it has been filled with oppression.” [Abu Dawud]
The Mahdi (both a religious and political leader) will lead the world of Islam at that time when Jesus pbuh is about to return. He will arise from within the ranks of the Muslims: “How will you be when the son of Mary (i.e., Jesus) descends amongst you and your imam is among you?” [Sahih Bukhari]
Therefore, he prophesied that one Islamic government will eventually rule over the entire world of Islam and the Mahdi will be both the political and religious head of that government. the Islamic Caliphate will be restored in the Arabian peninsula and Muslims will have to submit to the rule of an Arab who will be a resident of the city of Medina.
Among the Signs shown to Prophet Muhammad pbuh during his miraculous visit to Jerusalem, was a destiny that would witness Jesus and a Muslim army that will conquer Jerusalem, liberate the Holy Land and Muslim rule will be restored: Abu Hurairah reported that the Prophet pbuh said: Black banners shall emerge from Khorasan, and no force will be able to stop them until they are inserted in Aelia (Jerusalem). [Sunan Tirmidhi]
Jesus, NOT the Mahdi, will then rule the world from Jerusalem: “Allah’s Messenger pbuh said, “The Hour will not be established until the son of Mary descends among you as a just ruler. He will break the cross, kill the pigs, and abolish the Jizya. Money will be in abundance so that nobody will accept it (as charitable gifts).” [Sahih Bukhari]
The story of the Mahdi, as recounted in the sunnah, is a story narrated by Abu Said al-Khudri (ra) that the Messenger of Allah said: “At the end of the time of my ummah, the Mahdi will appear. Allah will grant him rain, the earth will bring forth its fruits, he will give a lot of money, cattle will increase and the ummah will become great.” [Reported by al-Haakim in his Mustadrak, 4/557-558]
This is not to be confused with the following hadith about Dajjal, because Dajjal and the Mahdi are two different figures in Islam. The Antichrist, NOT the Mahdi, will control the rain, wind and crops:
The Messenger of Allah pbuh mentioned Dajjal. He said: “He will come to some people and call them, and they will respond and believe in him. Then he will command the sky to rain and it will rain, and he will command the earth to produce vegetation and it will do so…” [Sunan Ibn Majah]
Dajjal, Imam Mahdi and Jesus are three distinct personalities. Dajjal is the false Messiah or Antichrist as known by Christians, Mahdi as Imam, and Jesus is the true Messiah.
Prophet Muhammad pbuh declared that one of the major signs of the Last Day was that Allah would deceive the Jews by raising and sending against them one who will impersonate the Messiah. Instead, the False Messiah will lead them by deception to the greatest divine punishment.
Prophet Muhammad gave a description of the Antichrist as follows: He will be a Jew, a young man, powerfully built with curls in his hair. [Sahih Muslim]. Orthodox Jews wear these curls in the form of sideburns (payot) because of a Biblical injunction against shaving the corners of ones head [Leviticus: 19:27].
The Antichrist has to appear as a human being, and as a Jew, since his mission is to convince the Jews that he is the Messiah whom they are waiting for. Unless he is a Jew, they will not accept him as the Messiah. Dajjal will not claim to be Jesus since the Jews rejected Jesus as their Messiah, thus, the Jews will not accept the false Messiah if he claims to be Jesus.
Jesus will descend from the sky with his hands resting on the wings of two angels and will kill Dajjal, so how could Dajjal and the Muslim Jesus be one in the same? Muslims believe in the same Jesus that Christians do, but Christians don’t believe it is the same Jesus as the Bible.
Christianity and Islam both agree on the identity of the Antichrist. He (a Jew) will show up in the third temple in Jerusalem and declare himself as The Messiah. See Satan’s Counterfeit Israel, Antichrist & World Rule.