Answering Islam - A Christian-Muslim dialog

Has the Quran’s Challenge Been Met? Pt. 2

Sam Shamoun

We continue from where we left off.

The third problem with Ally’s claims is that a careful reading of The True Furqan shows that the author does not believe the heresy which Ally false ascribes to him, since he clearly affirms that the Father, the Word and the Holy Spirit are three distinct Persons who coexist as a Triune God:

3. Our believing worshipers testified that We have appeared to them in manifestations demonstrating THREE PERSONS. However, unto Us are the phenomenal manifestations as well as the fantastic transfigurations.

4. Furthermore, they accepted Us by faith as "Abba, Father" and beheld Us as the "Merciful Son" and acknowledged Us as the "Comforting Spirit." Therefore, they did not malign themselves, neither did they blaspheme nor did they add partners to Us.

5. For We are "The Father", "The Son", "The Spirit" as A TRIUNE GOD and only One God. None is beside Us in the heavens or the earth. (Al Saffee and Al Mahdy, The True Furqan [WinePress Publishing, Enumclaw, WA 1999], 12. The Triune God (Surat Al Thalooth), pp. 61-62; capital emphasis ours)


8. The ones who have gone astray from among Our worshipers have also added companions to Us, a blasphemous addition. They have given Us ninety-nine companions with similar names of unwholesome human personalities. We have never granted permission nor authority to anyone to use contradictory titles to describe Us.

9. For example, they announced falsely that We are the Dictator, the Avenger, the Destroyer, the Arrogant, the One who conquers and humiliates others; that We have betrayed each other and We are the Greatest of Deceivers.

10. Far be it from Us to be described by the lying words of the apostates. We are Holy, Holy, Holy, and far above their wildest imaginations.

11. In reality, what they have enunciated was not the by-product of their imagination, but was by the powerful influence of Satan, the wicked one… 

14. Those who believe, from among Our followers, publicize that We are the One and only True God, THE TRIUNE IN UNITY, UNITED IN TRINITY ESSENTIALLY so without separation or addition. They, in fact, have spoken the truth concerning Us, while the imposters lied. (Ibid., pp. 63-64)

22. Furthermore, this man victimized Our true believers by putting the sword to their necks whenever they would not testify that God is only one and not A TRIUNE GOD. That is despite the fact that they never added a companion to Us, neither did they join Us to any worldly personality. (Ibid., p. 67; capital emphasis ours)

Now one can say that the author isn’t always careful in the way he describes the Trinity, since some of his language may lend itself to modalism. However, the above surahs conclusively testify that the author isn’t a modalist who believes that the Father, the Word and the Holy Spirit are one and the same Person. Rather, he is a Trinitarian who emphatically testifies that these three are distinct Persons eternally coexisting as the one true God.

Fourth, since Ally has a problem with the way the author has articulated the Trinity, then what will he say about the Quran’s gross misrepresentation and misunderstanding of this essential Christian doctrine?

The Quran erroneously defines Christian belief as the worship of three gods, consisting of Allah, Mary and their offspring Jesus:

And when Allah saith: O Jesus, son of Mary! Didst thou say unto mankind: Take me and my mother for two gods beside Allah? he saith: Be glorified! It was not mine to utter that to which I had no right. If I used to say it, then Thou knewest it. Thou knowest what is in my mind, and I know not what is in Thy Mind. Lo! Thou, only Thou, art the Knower of Things Hidden? S. 5:116 Pickthall

This is why the Quran censures Christians, warning them that believing that Allah is the third of three is kufr or infidelity:

They surely disbelieve who say: Lo! Allah is the third of three; when there is no God save the One God. If they desist not from so saying a painful doom will fall on those of them who disbelieve. S. 5:73 Pickthall

Suffice it to say, this is nothing more than a perversion of essential Christian teaching since no orthodox Bible-believing Christian claims that the Trinity consists of God, Mary and Jesus. Nor do Christians believe that God is the third of three, which in the context of the Quran means that God is supposed to be the third of three gods, with the other two deities consisting of Mary and Jesus.  Moreover, if Ally wishes to argue that the statement that God or Allah here refers to the One whom Christians call the Father then this only compounds the error, since no Biblically informed Christian believes that the Father is the third of three. Rather, Christians have traditionally held that the Father is the First of three within the Godhead, with the Son being second and the Holy Spirit being third.

Now Ally may say that these texts are not addressing the historic Christian understanding of the Trinity, but to some heretical beliefs which were circulating during Muhammad’s time. The problem with this argument is that this basically means that the Quran nowhere defines and/or addresses the actual beliefs of Trinitarians. Ally has to therefore face the fact that his scripture never says that Christians are disbelievers for saying that Allah is the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. As such, Ally has no choice but to admit that the Quran nowhere attacks the actual beliefs of Christians, but only rejects an aberration of those beliefs which Christians also outright reject and condemn.

Whatever the case may be, if he is going to be consistent then Ally has no choice but to speak out against his own Scripture, much like he did with The True Furqan, since it misrepresents the historic Christian position concerning the nature of the Godhead and the Person of Christ.

With that said, it is time for us to move on to the final part of our discussion.