Biblical Corruption: Foreign Material in the Bible

(Armando Bordales) #1

So I am engaged in a conversation with a Muslim colleague. I am basically just trying to listen to him and hear what are the Muslim objections to the Christian faith.

Our conversation today touched on Biblical corruption. Apparently to Muslims, people like Abraham, Jacob, David, and even Lot are esteemed with very high regard, even considered as Prophets of God. And as Prophets, it is unthinkable to the Muslim mind that these people can commit grievous acts, like David committing adultery with Bathsheba, and Lot getting drunk with wine and his daughters coming in to have intercourse with him. My friend is raising this question, how can God let this happen to His messengers? Except that this material was inserted into the Book by someone, and therefore proves that the Bible has been corrupted. How do I properly respond to this?

(SeanO) #2

@Armando I am not sure of the best way to approach this question with a Muslim, but I can think of two approaches to this question.

  1. Discuss free will beginning in the Garden of Eden - why did God put the tree there? Because God expects us to love / serve Him freely
  2. Point to Jesus and the reality that in Christianity there has only ever been one perfect messenger - the rest of us are all flawed human beings

Nabeel Quershi and David Wood have a good video on the topic of Biblical corruption within the context of Islam:

Ravi discussing how to share the Gospel with a Muslim:

If you get into a vacuous argument you will almost never win it.

Free Will

I might return to the story of the Garden of Eden. Why did God put the tree of the knowledge of good and evil in the Garden? Why did God allow Adam an Eve to be tempted? Clearly God wants us to learn to serve Him and to be stewards over creation. God created us to be free agents who would serve Him. The same is true of men like Abraham and Lot and King David.

God was working in their lives so that they could become more perfect - more holy. Psalms 51 is a beautiful confession of King David after his sin - it shows how we flawed human beings can relate to a perfect God as we grow in conformity to His will.


The reality that even men like Moses and Abraham were flawed points to the reality that we all need Jesus. The message of Christianity is that none of us are perfect - we have all fallen short of God’s glory - but in Jesus we can be made whole and righteous and pure.

(Rose Amer) #3

Hi Armando,
I believe knowing questioner will equip you better to answer this question. In Islam there is no concept of freewill, original sin or God’s son. All prophets/messengers/angels are sinless, every human being born is a sinless and God will and can never have a son. Saying Jesus is the Son of God is one of the greatest unforgivable sin.

Now about answer- Muslims firmly believe that the Quran is the last revelation from Allah and only good reliable word of God. They assume all the books that came before Quran are corrupted. To regard the Bible as true revelation from God, falsify Quran.

May be you can ask them, if they have ever read the Bible? Why do they think the Bible is corrupted? When do they think it was corrupted and what was the reason for corruption?
How do they know Quran is not corrupted?

You can mention following verses from Quran that talks about Torah, Psalms (Zaboor), & Injil (Bible)

In Quran 2:87 Allah declare this regarding Torah
“We gave Moses the Book and followed him up with a succession of messengers,”

In Quran 4:163 Allah says this about Psalms (Zaboor)
“We have sent thee inspiration, as We sent it to Noah and the Messengers after him: we sent inspiration to Abraham, Isma’il, Isaac, Jacob and the Tribes, to Jesus, Job, Jonah, Aaron, and Solomon, and to David We gave the Psalms,”

And Quran 3:3 Allah calls the books before the Quran a guide to Mohammed Gospel (Injil)

“It is He Who sent down to thee (step by step), in truth, the Book, confirming what went before it; and He sent down the Law (of Moses) and the Gospel (of Jesus)before this, as a guide to mankind, and He sent down the criterion (of judgment between right and wrong),”

Some other verses about the books before Quran are as follows:

“And in their footsteps We sent Jesus the son of Mary, confirming the Law that had come before him: We sent him the Gospel: therein was guidance and light, and confirmation of the Law that had come before him: a guidance and an admonition to those who fear Allah,” (5:46).

“Rejected were the messengers before thee: with patience and constancy they bore their rejection and their wrongs, until Our aid did reach them: there is none that can alter the words (and decrees) of Allah. Already hast thou received some account of those messengers,” (6:34).

“The word of thy Lord doth find its fulfillment in truth and in justice: None can change His words: for He is the one who heareth and knoweth all,” (6:115).

“For them are glad tidings, in the life of the present and in the Hereafter; no change can there be in the words of Allah. This is indeed the supreme felicity,” (10:64).

Answering Islam is a great website to know more about how to answer Muslims.

I hope this will help you in forming your answer. Above all, PRAY and seek Holy Spirit to lead you in your conversation. The target is not to win the argument but win your friend to Jesus Christ. I pray that God will reveal His truth to your friend. Amen

(Mariana Aguirre) #4

YES the only one was perfect was Jesus. Rom,. 3.23 remenber us that we all have this sinful nature, but in Christ we do not remain in sin . We can not forget that our people were just human, so… but only our Lord Jesus is our King, Prophet and Priest. I will sugest be alert, do no let be confuss and stay focus in God’s Word, in the one only True God the one in the Holy Biblie… and ask for the Holy Spirit open your eyes for his divine trues.

(Jimmy Sellers) #5

Here is a link to a thread several months back asking a similar question. This will not directly answer you friends question.

But I would add that a comparison of the life of Jesus as recorded in the Quran and the life of Mohammed as recorder in the Hadiths would make for an interesting comparison and discussion.

(Roger Way) #6

I think one of the most beautiful differences between Allah & Jesus, is that Jesus never hesitates to use folks on the lower end of the socio/economic totem pole. In fact He seems to prefer them. Look at the disciples… Almost every Bible hero fumbled badly somewhere along the way. But our God is so BIG, He can work His sovereign magic thru anyone. It’s His strength & power, not ours. He wastes nothing. He can use any of us. “Even a cup of cold water will do.” Mat 10:42. Our messengers aren’t spotless, they’re forgiven. That’s another beautiful difference between Christianity & every other religion. And humility is a powerful witness. I’m sure your witness to your friend is more effective than you know. You may be tilling the soil, planting seeds or watering the garden, but Jesus is using your friendship.

(Erich Mosier) #7

In one of Abdu’s talks (sorry I dont remember which one exactly) I thought that while discussing his conversion, he mentioned a passage in the Quran that said something along the lines of “You should trust the Bible”. Sorry this may not be very helpful and if I come across the reference I will update this, but I remember finding it interesting when he said it.

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(Edward Davidson) #8

Awesome, awesome replies, Sean. Thank you!

(SeanO) #9

@Oscar Glad it was helpful :slight_smile: This is one topic where I am so thankful for the great ministry of the RZIM team and I am constantly learning from them.

(Albert Paul Devanand) #10

Dear Armando Bordales,

It is very interesting that there is a thin line in between which deviates the Muslim faith from that of ours. In Romans 3:10-13, Paul refers Psalmist David’s writing that There is none righteous, none seeketh after God and everyone have gone astray. It is true that all including the men of God stumbled to keep the law in their lives. They were in need very much for the Savior to overcome the temptations and sins which were in control of them.

We should also know that if Adam who lived in a pure atmosphere who had the control of his realm very much and when he was not under any captivity of the evil, free, and in relation with God could sin, it is much more for any one, a prophet, or any righteous to stumble thereafter who lived in an unholy atmosphere, when everything was under the captivity of sin and its master satan. I think any Muslim would accept this point.

This shows the need for a Savior, Redeemer for the mankind to set them free from their captivity of sin.

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(Luna) #11

One thing I would ask your friend is where does it say in the Quran or the Hadiths that the bible is corrupt. If anything they affirm the Torah and the bible.

Sura 7:156-157:

And I will write down (my mercy) for those who are righteous and give alms and who believe in our signs; who follow the apostle, the unlettered prophet, whom they find written in the Torah and the Gospel THAT IS WITH THEM.

Sura 5:50:

" And let the People of the Gospel judge by what God has revealed in it . If any fail to judge by what God has revealed, they are licentious."

Sura 5:71:

“Say, O People of the Book! You are not (founded) on anything UNTIL you PERFORM the TORAH and the GOSPEL , and what was revealed to you from your Lord.”

This usually leads to the question of which book is more reliable (quran or Bible) since their only evidence is that the quran says different from the bible. If the conversation does go there I would start with how we know the Bible has not been changed and how even pieces of historical documents outside the bible agree with the Crucifixion. Then I would ask how can the Quran say all of history is wrong.

If your friend says Allah made it look like Jesus died then that means Allah took a innocent man to die in place of Christ which is morally wrong and he tricked Christians into believing Jesus died on the cross which helped start Christianity, which is morally wrong as well since we are condemned for putting partners with Allah which wouldn’t have happened had he not tricked us.

Here is a link where Sam Shamoun who is a Christian Apologist goes deeper into this. :slight_smile:

(Armando Bordales) #12

@Luna, thanks for your inputs. I did start reading the Quran and I too noticed those passages you highlighted. I actually promised my colleague to visit him again in his site office today. He is very eager to discuss with me these things and hopes that I may convert to Islam. :slight_smile: But the language barrier really gets in the way because he cannot speak English very well and I don’t know Arabic. We use Google Translate! I’m just trying to build our relationship right now. Thanks for the link by the way!

(Luna) #13

Google translate isn’t the best source I would definitely look into an app that is specifically made to translate English and Arabic. Google translate can make you sound crazy to people who don’t speak English well lol