Saturday 30 June 2018

Scriptural Contradictions lead a Jew to Embrace Islam

Each personal account of non Muslims embracing Islam is unique and worth listening to and reading. I came across this account of a Jew embracing Islam in the Arab News and this time the scriptural contradictions and the truth made this young man to embrace Islam. And reading his account I wonder why our faith leaders and scholar paint a picture that may ultimately lead to the truth which weightier and logical.

This young man Musa was 15 when he developed interest in other religions than his own that of orthodox Jews. He did not have many friends so he started having chat with different people of different faiths and even Muslims, discussing various queries that he had had about his own faith. 

One day while reading the account of Prophet Musa (Moses, peace be upon him) and his brother Prophet Haroun (Aaron, peace be upon him) in the Old Testament, he got puzzled as to how Prophet Haroun could have made the calf from the ornaments and gold pieces in the absence of Prophet Musa and lead his people to worship the gold calf. He wondered prophets don't commit sin and that too of idolatry and letting his people worship an idol. 

Read herein under how the incidence is mentioned in the Exodus Chapter 32 attributing the making of the gold calf to Prophet Haroun.

“Moses and the Golden Calf” Exodus Chapter 32

1. And when the people saw that Moses delayed to come down out of the mount, the people gathered themselves together unto Aaron, and said unto him, Up, make us gods, which shall go before us; for as for this Moses, the man that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, we wot not what is become of him.
2. And Aaron said unto them, Break off the golden earrings, which are in the ears of your wives, of your sons, and of your daughters, and bring them unto me.
3. And all the people brake off the golden earrings which were in their ears, and brought them unto Aaron.
4. And he received them at their hand, and fashioned it with a graving tool, after he had made it a molten calf: and they said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.
5. And when Aaron saw it, he built an altar before it; and Aaron made proclamation, and said, Tomorrow is a feast to the LORD.
6. And they rose up early on the morrow, and offered burnt offerings, and brought peace offerings; and the people sat down to eat and to drink, and rose up to play.
7. And the LORD said unto Moses, Go, get thee down; for thy people, which thou broughtest out of the land of Egypt, have corrupted themselves:
8. They have turned aside quickly out of the way which I commanded them: they have made them a molten calf, and have worshiped it, and have sacrificed thereunto, and said, These be thy gods, O Israel, which have brought thee up out of the land of Egypt.

He then searched for the truth in Quran and came read the explanation given in Qur'an which shows the truth - the truth that despite Prophet Haroun's stopping his people from making an idol, how his people defied the orders and commandments of Prophet Musa and got astray to the old practice of symbolizing idol of some animal or object as their gods.

Read herein under how Qur'an mentions the same episode with a difference - a difference that appeals to logic as prophets cannot commit sins and are aways guiding their people to the righteous path rather than walking their way:

The Qur’an “Moses and the Golden Calf” Sura Ta Ha 20

83. And what caused you to hasten from your people, O Musa?
84, He said: They are here on my track and I hastened on to Thee, my Lord, that Thou mightest be pleased.
85. He said: So surely We have tried your people after you, and the Samiri has led them astray.
86. So Musa returned to his people wrathful, sorrowing. Said he: O my people! did not your Lord promise you a goodly promise: did then the time seem long to you, or did you wish that displeasure from your Lord should be due to you, so that you broke (your) promise to me?
87. They said: We did not break (our) promise to you of our own accord, but we were made to bear the burdens of the ornaments of the people, then we made a casting of them, and thus did the Samiri suggest.
88. So he brought forth for them a calf, a (mere) body, which had a mooing sound, so they said: This is your god and the god of Musa, but he forgot.
89. What! could they not see that it did not return to them a reply, and (that) it did not control any harm or benefit for them?
90. And certainly Haroun had said to them before: O my people! you are only tried by it, and surely your Lord is the Beneficent God, therefore follow me and obey my order.
91. They said: We will by no means cease to keep to its worship until Musa returns to us.
92. (Musa) said: O Haroun! what prevented you, when you saw them going astray,
93. So that you did not follow me? Did you then disobey my order?
94. He said: O son of my mother! seize me not by my beard nor by my head; surely I was afraid lest you should say: You have caused a division among the children of Israel and not waited for my word.
95. He said: What was then your object, O Samiri?
96. He said: I saw (Jibreel - Gabriel) what they did not see, so I took a handful (of the dust) from the footsteps of the messenger, then I threw it in the casting; thus did my soul commend to me
97. He said: Be gone then, surely for you it will be in this life to say, Touch (me) not; and surely there is a threat for you, which shall not be made to fail to you, and look at your god to whose worship you kept (so long); we will certainly burn it, then we will certainly scatter it a (wide) scattering in the sea.

He feels that the 'facts' mentioned in the earlier scriptures may have been polluted or changed but the same facts remain unchanged in the Holy Qur'an.

He is also amazed to find many facts mentioned in the Qur'an which were only lately proved by science, like the development of human embryo:
“And certainly We created man of an extract of clay, Then We made him a small seed in a firm resting-place, Then We made the seed a clot, then We made the clot a lump of flesh, then We made (in) the lump of flesh bones, then We clothed the bones with flesh, then We caused it to grow into another creation, so blessed be Allah, the best of the creators.” (Qur’an 23:12-14)
He then continues to talk of factors that finally led him to embrace Islam.  Here read in his own words:
Here is one of the key factors that led me to explore my heart to find the truth of life. In Arabic, the word Islam comes from salama which means "to submit"; "purity" and "peace" come from the same root. The person submits to the One, the Merciful, and the Most Beneficent Allah; whereas other religions are named after people: Judaism comes from the tribe of Judea, Christianity from Jesus Christ, etc. Islam is a word derived from a verb; anyone who submits to Allah and believes in all the prophets is a true Muslim. Many of the great prophets mentioned in the Old Testament lived prior to Judaism and Judea; they submitted to God, and therefore they were all Muslims. And we shall live as the prophets lived, for they were great human beings.
This account was shared when Musa was 15 years in 2015 and was cautiously living with his new faith in order to arrest any backlash that may occur from his parents and friends. I am sure by now he would be 18 and taken an open decision about his newly acquired faith.

I must commend this young teenager who at this early age of life has been able to critically analyze his book of original faith and the Holy Qur'an and then take his ultimate decision to change his faith. His clarity of thought really amazes me as even I who am a born Muslims have not been able to critically analyze even our own holy book and draw lessons for my life. 

He even leaves a beautiful message for all of us and those thinking of converting to Islam:
When studying Qur’an, my advice to you is to read it for yourself. Looking at biased websites, you are not able to see the full content of a verse. Through this whole experience I have discovered that I did not find Islam, I re-embraced Islam; nor did I convert, I reverted; and on my ride from darkness to light, it has only made me a stronger, more spiritual, and a better human being. May Allah guide us all to the truth that I was led to.
May Allah be always his protector and bless him with more knowledge and wisdom to inspire others to embrace Islam.

Photo | Source | Arab News |  Comparison Bible and Quran |
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