Dialogue with a Muslim: links

Islam

A friendly Muslim. Mushtaq, has been engaging in dialogue here with us. His first post is summarised in Dialogue with a Muslim friend: part 1; his second is in Dialogue with a Muslim friend: part 2. This page provides links to those posts, as well as providing his responses to my replies.

First, below (1), is is full and detailed response; this is followed by a long summary (2). I have put them here for the sake of convenience, as reading them in the comboxes would be a long exercise.

My initial response to Mushtaq, explaining why his methodology is incorrect and bound to lead to the wrong conclusion, is here and is followed by one dealing with His Holy name here.

My second, dealing with the teaching of the Church Fathers and continuity is here.

My third, dealing with Jesus and the Trinity is here

My final, dealing with other objections, is here

Rob’s first response is here

As we proceed with the dialogue, I will add other links to it on this page for the sake of the convenience of readers who wish to follow it. Do, please, feel free to contribute.

Jess

Fresh dialogue links.

Mushtaq came back with a long  series of answers/questions in the comments box, which took up rather a lot of room, and repeated much of what is already here, so I have dispensed with the comments once answered.

Rather than, as Mushtaq would like, stick to his script, I have taken the themes and answered them in consecutive posts. This is how I work, analytically, and it allows for the full scopos of Scripture to be used, rather then the cherry-picking which is characteristic of the script approach.

Replying to Mushtaq  the Holy Name here

Answering Mushtaq: St John here

Answering Mushtaq: St John’s Gospel here

The Church and its Book here

Logos & Son of God here

Triads, Trinity & Paraclete here

Mushtaq: misunderstanding the Canon here

Fatherhood here

The ‘Easter Challenge’ Mushtaq posed is answered in three posts:

Easter Challenge: the women come to the tomb

Easter Challenge: Inside the tomb

Easter Challenge: the first appearance

These three seem to me and others sufficient evidence that one can reconcile the explain any differences in the Gospel accounts.

This whole series stands, I hope, as a set of links to help anyone engaged in dialogue with our Muslim friends. I am grateful to Chalcedon, Rob and Neo for their help and support.

Jess xx 🙂

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1.

Re: Dialogue with a Muslim friend: part 1
14 Sep 2013:
Full and detailed reply to Madam Jessica
From: Muhummad Mushtaq Tariq

Thank you Madam Jessica for praising my comments as “good ones”. I am hopeful we shall maintain same friendly and respectful emotion for each other throughout our dialogue. And I am also hopeful that we shall have a “Dialogue for Result”, not a formal “Dialogue for Dialogue”.
It is my full and detailed reply to your answers. A summary of our dialogue is coming afterwards.

Thank you Madam Jessica for a nice and friendly discussion here. My reply has following FIVE (05) parts, you may reply separately to each part.

1-MUSHTAQ:

The problem is that your Trinity is wrong (e.g. Father and Son are equal in age) because you do not understand the teachings of Prophets of Old Testament in Previous centuries, nor the teachings of Blessed Jesus.
Why did Adam, Noah, David, Solomon, Moses and Blessed Jesus never speak and hear following words required to clarify basic requirement of salvation (i.e. Concept of God / Trinity)?:
(1) Trinity (2) Three Persons (3) Triune God (4) Three (5) Same substance, no three parts.
Blessed Jesus and Prophets always used Number ONE, Never Number THREE to teach concept of God to their nations. God is not author of confusion, but the pagans of 4th century are authors of confusion who invented these words and introduced in Christianity as basic requirement of salvation concept of God.

B-JESSICA:
JH

The problem is that this view fails to read the OT in the light of the New; it also fails, oddly for someone whose book is in a Semitic language, to understand the Hebrew.
The word Elohim is used thousands of times for “God”; Adonai is used hundreds of times for “Lord”; both of these words are plural nouns in Hebrew.

B-MUSHTAQ:
I have following six answers:
Answer 1:
Sorry to say, you totally ignored my question and replied that question which I didn’t ask you “Is plural noun use for God in Old Testament as favor of Trinity?”,
I repeat here my unanswered question:
Why did Adam, Noah, David, Solomon, Moses and Blessed Jesus never speak and hear following words required to clarify basic requirement of salvation (i.e. Concept of God / Trinity)?:
(1) Trinity (2) Three Persons (3) Triune God (4) Three (5) Same substance, no three parts.
Answer 2:
In your both answers, although you addressed upto some extent that Trinity word is not found in Bible, yes, we know that this word was not present in times of Blessed Jesus. But you didn’t even touch the remaining words in my list i.e. (2) Three Persons (3) Triune God (4) Three (5) Same substance, no three parts.
These words were present in times of Blessed Jesus and he also spoke many times these words, but never to explain basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} Why? He didn’t use these words to teach concept of God, why? Can we conclude from here that Trinity formula is neither a concept of God nor a basic requirement of salvation in the eyes of Blessed Jesus?
Answer 3:
The majestic plural (pluralis maiestatis in Latin, literally, “the plural of majesty”), is the use of a plural pronoun to refer to a single person holding a high office, such as a monarch, bishop, or pope. It is also called the royal pronoun, the royal “we” or the Victorian “we”. Use as majestic plural (to denote the excellence, power, and dignity of the person who speaks or writes) is the most common one.
For example, the Basic Law of the Sultanate of Oman opens thus:
On the Issue of the Basic Law of the State We, Qaboos bin Said, Sultan of Oman…
If Majestic plural means what you mean, then are there more than one Sultan of Oman?
In Quran, Allah has also used “We” as majestic plural, We all know that Quran strongly advocates for one God. Therefore, Majestic plural is not a proof of many persons of God in Old Testament.
In the Hebrew Bible Elohim, when meaning the God of Israel, is mostly grammatically singular. Even in Genesis 1:26 “Then God said (singular verb), ‘Let us make (plural verb) man in our image, after our likeness’.” Elohim is singular. Wilhelm Gesenius and other Hebrew grammarians traditionally described this as the pluralis excellentiae (plural of excellence), which is similar to the pluralis majestatis (plural of majesty, or “Royal we”).
Same Masjestic plural applies on “Adonai”.
Answer 4:
Even if Majestic plural means many persons of God, then where is “Three”? According to Christian belief, concept of God (Trinity) is basic requirement of salvation, why was number three not used in a single verse of Old Testament to teach concept of God?
Answer 5:
Elohim is a grammatically singular or plural noun for “god” or “gods” in both modern and ancient Hebrew language.
When used with singular verbs and adjectives elohim is usually singular, “god” or especially, the God. When used with plural verbs and adjectives elohim is usually plural, “gods” or “powers”.
Merely presence of this plural is not proof of any Trinity, because If I accept your formula of “proof” of Trinity by a plural Elohim, then same formula teaches that English speaking persons using word “gods” are polytheists.
Answer 6:
Despite the -im ending common to many plural masculine nouns in Hebrew, the word when referring to the Name of God is grammatically singular, and takes a singular verb in the Hebrew Bible.
In Hebrew the ending -im, mainly indicates a masculine plural. However with Elohim the construction is grammatically singular, (i.e. it governs a singular verb or adjective) when referring to the Hebrew God, but grammatically plural elohim (i.e. taking a plural verb or adjective) when used of pagan divinities (Psalms 96:5; 97:7). Note that human beings can also have names with plural endings, such as Ephraim, the son of Joseph.
So using your formula of “Elohim” as proof of Trinity, Same rule will mean that Ephraim, the son of Joseph is not one person, but three persons? Of course not he Ephraim is one person inspite of ending –im, similarly, Elohim is one person, inspite of ending –im.

C-JESSICA:
A number of passages speak of the “faces” or “presences” or “persons” of God (Exodus 33:14; Deuteronomy 4:37; and Job 13:8).
God refers to Himself as “Us,” “Our,” and “We” (Genesis 1:26, 2:18 (LXX), 3:22, 11:7; Isaiah 6:8, and 41:21-2 – a phenomenon that is reflected in virtually every English translation.

C-MUSHTAQ:
Majestic plural has already been addressed. Now for rest, I have following two answers.
Answer 1:
God has no body like us, he has not body parts like us, these words faces are not proof of three persons. If you insist these are “proofs”, then why can I not conclude two or four or five persons as well?
For example, Genesis talks about:-
God speaking (e.g. Genesis 1:3). But does this mean that God has vocal cords?
God seeing (Genesis 1:4). Does God have eyes with pupils and retinas?
God walking (Genesis 3:8). Does God have legs?
God making clothes for Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:21). Does God have hands?
God smelling a sweet savour from Noah’s sacrifice (Genesis 8:21). Does God have a nose and olfactory receptors?
If we say we take Genesis ‘literally’, doesn’t that mean insisting that these descriptions are literal, too? And “faces” or “presences” or “persons” of God are also merely literally.

And also note that Definition of Trinity {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} doesn’t require to bring faith on “faces” of God. So faces of God is no proof of Trinity.

God is spirit
In the New Testament, the Lord Blessed Jesus Christ tells us that ‘God is spirit’ (John 4:24). This indicates that God is not material and does not have a body, so He is not visible to, or discernible by, our bodily senses.

Answer 2:
Exodus 33:14
14 And he said, My presence shall go with thee, and I will give thee rest.

Where is basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} here? Where are three persons?

Deuteronomy 4:37
37 And because he loved thy fathers, therefore he chose their seed after them, and brought thee out in his sight with his mighty power out of Egypt;

Where is basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} here? Where are three persons?

Job 13:8
8 Will ye accept his person? will ye contend for God?
Where is basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} here? Where are three persons?

God refers to Himself as “Us,” “Our,” and “We” (Genesis 1:26, 2:18, 3:22, 11:7; Isaiah 6:8, and 41:21-2

Genesis 1:26
King James Version (KJV)
26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

I have already discussed it in my B1 answer, so no need to repeat here.

Genesis 2:18
King James Version (KJV)
18 And the Lord God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.
Where is “We” here?

Genesis 3:22
22 And the Lord God said, Behold, the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever:
How can you conclude basic requirement of salvation (three persons) from here?

Genesis 11:7
King James Version (KJV)
7 Go to, let us go down, and there confound their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.
Where is use of following words required to clarify basic requirement of salvation (i.e. Concept of God / Trinity)?:
(1) Trinity (2) Three Persons (3) Triune God (4) Three (5) Same substance, no three parts.

Isaiah 6:8
8 Also I heard the voice of the Lord, saying, Whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then said I, Here am I; send me.
Again a Majestic plural, and not a Trinity.

Isaiah 41:21-22
21 Produce your cause, saith the Lord; bring forth your strong reasons, saith the King of Jacob.
22 Let them bring them forth, and shew us what shall happen: let them shew the former things, what they be, that we may consider them, and know the latter end of them; or declare us things for to come.
Where is use of number THREE here for concept of God?

D-JESSICA:
In addition to plural words and the divine distinctions pointed out above, mention can be made of the triadic prayers, benedictions, and doxologies of the Old Testament (e.g. Genesis 48:15-16; Numbers 6:24-26; Isaiah 6:3 see also Isaiah 33:22; Jeremiah 33:2; Daniel 9:19), which given their formulaic character, cry out for some kind of explanation.

D-MUSHTAQ:
I have two answers.
Answer 1:
We Muslims have only one claim about Trinity in Old Testament.
“Not even a single nation & Prophet from Adam till Moses believed in basic requirement of salvation (concept of God / Trinity: Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but there are not three gods, but One full and complete God).
The concept of God is basic requirement of salvation and it is to be first teaching and main teaching. For example, Monotheism of Allah and Prophethood of Blessed Muhummad are two corner stones of Islam and basic requirement of salvation, Quran is full of them and explicit verses can be found. But in Christianity, here Trinity, Triune God, three persons, one essence no parts are basic requirement of salvation as concept of God, and these subjects are absent from Bible and teachings of Prophets. From few verses indicating plualrity, a scholarly research is requiring to think those verses “cry out for some kind of explanation”.

Answer 2:
Where are Triadic prayers? in Genesis Ch 48 V15-16?
15 And he blessed Joseph, and said, God, before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac did walk, the God which fed me all my life long unto this day,
16 The Angel which redeemed me from all evil, bless the lads; and let my name be named on them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac; and let them grow into a multitude in the midst of the earth.
Where are three persons of Trinity here?

E-JESSICA:
As for the Lord Blessed Jesus’s teaching, it is clear enough:

7 “If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on you know Him and have seen Him.”

8 Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and it is sufficient for us.”

9 Blessed Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you have not known Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; so how can you say, ‘Show us the Father’? 10 Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works. 11 Believe Me that I am in the Father and the Father in Me, or else believe Me for the sake of the works themselves.

He who has seen Blessed Jesus has seen the Father, who is in Him, as He is in the Father.

E-MUSHTAQ:
God and Blessed Jesus are one (John 14: l l ): ..Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me.”
Read then John 17:21 “That they (the disciples) all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they may also be one in us …”

It is clear here that God and Blessed Jesus are one, but also that the disciples are one in Blessed Jesus and God. If Blessed Jesus is God because he is in God, why are the disciples then not God, as they all are like Blessed Jesus also in God? If God, Blessed Jesus and the Holy Ghost form one unit of Trinity, then with the disciples included they should form a God unit of fifteen.

But Blessed Jesus is God according to John l4:9:,,… he that hath seen me hath seen the Father.”

See to the context now-what is before and after this: (John 14:8): “Philip saith utto him, Lord, shew us the Father,and it
sufeth us.” (John 14:9): “Blessed Jesus saith unto him, have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, philip? he that hath seen me hast seen the Father; and how sayest thou then, Shew us the Father?”

So finally Blessed Jesus asked Philip how to show the appearance of God to the disciples, which is not possible. you should believe in God by admiring his creation: the sun, the moon, all creation, and Blessed Jesus himself who was created by God.

He said (John 4:24): .,God is a Spirit…” and (John 5:37): “…ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape.” How can you see a spirit then?
What they saw was Blessed Jesus and not God. Also, paul said (I Timothy 6: 16):. . .whom no man hath seen, nor can see…,’ So what you can see is never God.
Our Holy Quran says (Surah 6:103): ,,Vision comprehendeth Him not, but He comprehendeth (all) vision. He is the Subtle. the Aware.”

F-JESSICA:
As for the notion that the Trinity was invented in the fourth century, well that cannot stand the test of a study of the Church Fathers. Here are some examples which show Trinitarian thought in the Fathers:

F-MUSHTAQ:
I have following three answers:
Answer 1:
Merely use of a word by a man doesn’t necessarily mean that he believes in it in the same meaning. Take an example; Muslims, Unitarian Christians and Trinitarian Christians all believe in (i) God, (ii) Word of God and (iii) Holy Spirit. Muslims, Unitarian Christians and Trinitarian Christians all use these words as holy words; does it mean that they all believe in Trinity? Answer is No.
Then how can we identify who is Trinitarian and who is not? Answer of this question is definition of Trinity {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God}
This definition of Trinity was neither spoken nor heard by any Prophet from Adam till Moses, and even Blessed Jesus also never hear and spoke these words, but pagans of 4th century invented it as “basic requirement of salvation in Christianity”.

Word Of God In Christianity: Part of God which was “with” God but also “fully” God and then became Blessed Jesus the Son of God.
Word Of God In Islam: God’s command “Be!” which resulted in Blessed Jesus’ conception in the womb of Mary without the need for a human father.
Holy Spirit In Christianity: The third member of the Triune God, but also “fully” God in every respect.
Holy Spirit In Islam: He is the angel Gabriel. The angel Gabriel is highly esteemed as the “Trustworthy Spirit”

Therefore, now it has proved that merely use of words Father, son and Holy Spirit are by early Church fathers is not a proof that early Church fathers were Trinitarians, may be they are using them in Unitarian Christians sense or Trinitarian sense? We cannot be sure until we find that early church fathers were reading the same basic requirement of salvation (Concept of God=Trinity) that was invented in Nicean council, {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God}

Answer 2:
Here I shall show that opinion of some Church fathers before official definition of basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} has no weightage due to circumstances of that era.

The Ante-Nicene Period (literally meaning “before Nicaea”) of the history of early Christianity refers to the period following the Apostolic Age of the 1st century down to the First Council of Nicaea in 325.
Beliefs in Ante-Nicene Period:
Following books are used to cite beliefs in this era:
1. Siker, Jeffrey S. “Christianity in the Second and Third Centuries”, Chapter Nine in The Early Christian World. Philip F. Esler, editor. Routledge (2000). ISBN 0-415-24141-3. Pp 233–35.
2. Duffy, Eamon. Saints and Sinners: A History of the Popes. Yale University Press (2002). ISBN 0-300-09165-6.
pg. 12.

Jeffery Siker reports that many variations in this time defy neat categorizations, as various forms of Christianity interacted in a complex fashion to form the dynamic character of Christianity in this era. The Post-Apostolic period was extremely diverse both in terms of beliefs and practices. In addition to the broad spectrum of general branches of Christianity, there was constant change and diversity that variably resulted in both internecine conflicts and syncretic adoption.[Siker (2000)]

Duffy supports this model, noting that Christianity throughout the Roman Empire was “in a state of violent creative ferment” during the 2nd century. Orthodoxy, or proto-orthodoxy, existed alongside forms of Christianity that would become extreme deviance, or “heresy”, in the near future, such as Marcionism, Valentinian gnosticism, and Montanism. However, Duffy states that during this period the orthodox and unorthodox were sometimes difficult to distinguish and that Early Christianity in Rome had a wide variety of competing Christian sects.[Duffy (2002)]

Therefore, the age before official recognition of Trinity formula in 4th century, there was no official state religion as Trinity and different sects were must competing together. Therefore, opinion of few church fathers speaking name of Holy ghost, son and father, doesn’t necessarily reflect opinion of thousands of church fathers that were also present and who might be Unitarian and may be these few church fathers that you mention, were the only Trinitarian church fathers. The reason is that Islam became official state religion in the life of our Prophet and its sacred texts were officially conserved, but Christians remained devoid of official state religion as Christianity for centuries and they were killed and tortured in Byzintime Roman Empire. Bibles had no official state protection. Armenia is a mountainous country in the South Caucasus region of Eurasia. It became the first state in the world to adopt Christianity as its state religion, in the early years of the 4th century (the traditional date is 301 AD). The modern Republic of Armenia recognizes the Armenian Apostolic Church, the world’s oldest national church, as the country’s primary religious establishment.

Answer 3:
Even if we agree that these Church fathers before 4th century were defining basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} then another interesting question is raised:
“Are these Church fathers more intelligent than Blessed Jesus and his disciples?” Are these Church fathers more Nobel than all those Prophets from Adam till Moses who never speak and hear number three (3) to teach basic requirement of salvation concept of God (Trinity) to their nations?
If Concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} is basic requirement of salvation, then it means that all prophets from Adam till Moses and even Blessed Jesus and his disciples who didn’t know basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} will go to Hell and these Church fathers will go to Paradise? If you search answer to this question, you will realize that Unitarian Christians are true Christians who never speak and hear number three (forget term trinity) to define basic requirement of salvation concept of God, but these Trinitarian Christians are more closer to pagans of 4th century who invented this self contradictory formula of basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God}

G-JESSICA:
Polycarp (70-155/160). Bishop of Smyrna. Disciple of John the Apostle.

“O Lord God almighty… I bless you and glorify you through the eternal and heavenly high priest Blessed Jesus Christ, your beloved Son, through whom be glory to you, with Him and the Holy Spirit, both now and forever” ( PG 5.1040).

Justin Martyr (100?-165?). He was a Christian apologist and martyr.

“For, in the name of God, the Father and Lord of the universe, and of our Savior Blessed Jesus Christ, and of the Holy Spirit, they then receive the washing with water” (First Apol., LXI).

Ignatius of Antioch (died 98/117). Bishop of Antioch. He wrote much in defense of Christianity.

“In Christ Blessed Jesus our Lord, by whom and with whom be glory and power to the Father with the Holy Spirit for ever” (n. 7; PG 5.988).
“We have also as a Physician the Lord our God Blessed Jesus the Christ the only-begotten Son and Word, before time began, but who afterwards became also man, of Mary the virgin. For ‘the Word was made flesh.’ Being incorporeal, He was in the body; being impassible, He was in a passable body; being immortal, He was in a mortal body; being life, He became subject to corruption, that He might free our souls from death and corruption, and heal them, and might restore them to health, when they were diseased with ungodliness and wicked lusts.” (Alexander Roberts and James Donaldson, eds., The ante-Nicene Fathers, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1975 rpt., Vol. 1, p. 52, Ephesians 7.)

Irenaeus (115-190). As a boy he listened to Polycarp, the disciple of John. He became Bishop of Lyons.

“The Church, though dispersed throughout the whole world, even to the ends of the earth, has received from the apostles and their disciples this faith: …one God, the Father Almighty, Maker of heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are in them; and in one Christ Blessed Jesus, the Son of God, who became incarnate for our salvation; and in the Holy Spirit, who proclaimed through the prophets the dispensations of God, and the advents, and the birth from a virgin, and the passion, and the resurrection from the dead, and the ascension into heaven in the flesh of the beloved Christ Blessed Jesus, our Lord, and His manifestation from heaven in the glory of the Father ‘to gather all things in one,’ and to raise up anew all flesh of the whole human race, in order that to Christ Blessed Jesus, our Lord, and God, and Savior, and King, according to the will of the invisible Father, ‘every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth, and that every tongue should confess; to him, and that He should execute just judgment towards all…’” (Against Heresies X.l)

All these men knew either Apostles or those taught by them.

G-MUSHTAQ:
Please see again my answers F1 and F2 above. Here I shall add following five answers:
Answer 1:
Where is basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} in the words of these Church fathers?
Was it totally unnecessary for these Church fathers to remove all doubts from definition of Trinity?

Answer 2:
Polycarp (70-155/160). Consider his words: “O Lord God almighty… I bless you and glorify you through the eternal and heavenly high priest Blessed Jesus Christ, your beloved Son, through whom be glory to you, with Him and the Holy Spirit, both now and forever” ( PG 5.1040).”

His words don’t help Trinitarian Christians, reasons are:
(a)He is blessing to “God”, he is not blessing “Triune God” or Trinity.
(b)He is calling Blessed Jesus a “high priest”, not full and complete God in every respect or second member of Triune God.
(c) He is calling him Son (Many people are called Son of God in Bible, Adam lacked both father and mother, and is also called Son of God in Luke 3 :38. So Adam is also Son of God without adding him in Trinity; therefore, Son of God doesn’t necessarily mean member of Trinity, but it may be like Adam Son of God without concept of Trinity). So Is this Son with reference of Trinity or Son like Adam? Polycarp is not telling here that Son is second member of Triune God or full and complete God in every respect.
(d)He is not saying here that Holy Spirit is third member of Triune God and also full and complete God in every respect. Muslims and Unitarian Christians also believe in Holy Spirit without Trinity, same is doing here Polycarp.

Answer 3:
Justin Martyr (100?-165?). Lets consider his words:
“For, in the name of God, the Father and Lord of the universe, and of our Savior Blessed Jesus Christ, and of the Holy Spirit, they then receive the washing with water” (First Apol., LXI).
His words don’t help Trinitarian Christians, reasons are:
(a) He Justin is saying “in name of God”, he is not saying “in name of Triune God” or “in name of Trinity”.
(b) He is calling God as Father and Lord of Universe. Unitarian Christians also believe him father. So is he saying God father in Unitarian Christian sense or Trinitarian Christians sense? We don’t know, but it is confirmed he is not calling father as first member of Triune God.
(c)He is calling Blessed Jesus a Savior, not second member of Triune God or full and complete God in every respect. (Unitarian Christians and Muslims also believe Blessed Jesus a Saviour, but in that meaning that he struggled to save his nation from Sin and called them to worship one God).

Answer 4:
Ignatius of Antioch; His words, as you referred, don’t help Trinitarian Christians due to following seven reasons:
(a)He is calling Blessed Jesus a Lord, not second member of Triune God.
(b)He is not identifying father and Holy Spirit as first and third members of Triune God, and also full and complete God at same time.
(c)He is calling Blessed Jesus a Physician, not a part of Trinity.
(d)He is calling Blessed Jesus “Only begotten Son”.
His words contradict Bible.
Long before Blessed Jesus was born, God said to David (Psalm 2:7): “I will declare the decree: the Lord hath said unto me (David), Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.”
In Jeremiah 31:9: “I am a father to Israel and Ephraim is my first born.” In Exodus 4:22, Israel was called first born, too.
(e)His words ‘the Word was made flesh. Contradict Immortal concept of Blessed Jesus.
(f)If ‘the Word was made flesh.’ Mean mortal body of Blessed Jesus; then death of a mortal body is ordinary detah of a mortal body among death of billions of mortals, there is nothing special in the death of a mortal body and it rejects greatness in sacrifice of Blessed Jesus.
(g)Claiming that Blessed Jesus subject to corruption is blasphemy, whether you accept him Prophet or God.

Answer 5:
Irenaeus ; His words, as you referred, don’t help Trinitarian Christians due to following five reasons:
(a)He is calling One God, not Triune God.
(b)He is calling Blessed Jesus Son of God (in same sense as Adam is called Son of God without Trinity), so Blessed Jesus here is also called Son without being second member of Triune God.
(c)Blessed Jesus became incarnate for salvation, incarnation here means to be born and salvation means that he called his nation to God to get salvation, here it is not mentioned that second member of Triune God became Man or full and complete God Blessed Jesus converted to ordinary man by process of incarnation, also here it is not explained that salvation came because Blessed Jesus washed sins of Christians with his blood.
(d)Holy Spirit is not being called here third member of Triune God and also full and complete God in every respect. Due to absence of definition of Holy Spirit, his words are also valid of Holy Spirit is considered angle Gabriel.
(e)His words resurrection contradict belief of Divinity of Blessed Jesus, as God cannot die and cannot resurrect.

H-JESSICA:
The idea that Trinitarian thought started in the 4th century is just another area where Muslims err.

H-MUSHTAQ:
I have three answers:
Answer 1:
Before 4th century, where is basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God}
Answer2:
This formula Trinity certainly was invented in council of 4th century, if not then quote me words of Blessed Jesus (and not of those early Church fathers who may or may not be Unitarian Christians and yet believing in Father Son and Holy Spirit).
Answer 3:
Although there is much debate as to whether the beliefs of the Apostles were merely articulated and explained in the Trinitarian Creeds, [Bingham, Jeffrey, “HT200 Class Notes”, Dallas Theological Seminary, (2004).] or were corrupted and replaced with new beliefs,[The Encyclopedia Americana (1956), Vol. XXVII, p. 294L][Nouveau Dictionnaire Universel (Paris, 1865–1870), Vol. 2, p. 1467.] all scholars recognize that the Creeds themselves were created in reaction to disagreements over the nature of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. These controversies, however, were great and many, and took some centuries to be resolved.

In the fourth century, Arianism, as traditionally understood, taught that the Father existed prior to the Son who was not, by nature, God but rather a changeable creature who was granted the dignity of becoming “Son of God”.In 325, the Council of Nicaea adopted the Nicene Creed which described Christ as “God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father”. The creed used the term homoousios (of one substance) to define the relationship between the Father and the Son. After more than fifty years of debate, homoousios was recognized as the hallmark of orthodoxy, and was further developed into the formula of “three persons, one being”.

The Confession of the Council of Nicaea said little about the Holy Spirit.[“Trinity”. Britannica Encyclopaedia of World Religions. Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica. 2006.] The doctrine of the divinity and personality of the Holy Spirit was developed by Athanasius in the last decades of his life.[On Athanasius, Oxford Classical Dictionary, Edited by Simon Hornblower and Antony Spawforth. Third edition. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 1996.] He defended and refined the Nicene formula. By the end of the 4th century, under the leadership of Basil of Caesarea, Gregory of Nyssa, and Gregory of Nazianzus (the Cappadocian Fathers), the doctrine had reached substantially its current form.[“Trinity”. Britannica Encyclopaedia of World Religions. Chicago: Encyclopædia Britannica. 2006.]

Mushtaq:

If you are a true follower of Blessed Jesus, you should avoid these words listed above as Unitarain Christians avoid use of these words to describe God, in this sense, Unitarian Christians are more closer to Blessed Jesus and Original Christianity of first century, Trinitarian Christians are more closer to Pagans of 4th century than original concept of God in times of Blessed Jesus.

Al Quran: Surah/Chapter 004 – An-Nisa. Verse 171.

People of the Book, do not go to excess in your religion, and do not say anything about God except the truth: the Messiah, Blessed Jesus, son of Mary, was nothing more than a messenger of God, His word, directed to Mary, a spirit from Him. So believe in God and His messengers and do not speak of a ‘Trinity’—stop, that is better for you—God is only one God, He is far above having a son, everything in the heavens and earth belongs to Him and He is the best one to trust.

I-JESSICA:

JH

There are no Unitarians in the early Church, and the Church has taught that Blessed Jesus was in God and God in Him from the start, and as my quotations show, the Fathers taught as the Apostles, and as the Church still does. The Unitarians as heretics who, like the Muslims, fail to grasp the mystery of God as Trinity. Quite what quoting the Koran proves, other than it is in error, I am unsure.

I-MUSHTAQ:
I have following five answers:
Answer 1:
There are no Unitarians in the early Church? All believed in ONE God and words “Trinity” and “Three persons” were neither spoken nor heard in early Church, Blessed Jesus himself never spoke and hear three persons, so a better statement is that there were no Trinitarians in early Church and in times of Blessed Jesus as well.

Answer 2:
You said: “Church has taught that Blessed Jesus was in God and God in Him from the start”
Lets analyze; Blessed Jesus in God vs God in Blessed Jesus.
What is difference and how both conditions can be true at same time?
First of all understand an example. If I go into a room, then I am in room and my no part is out of room. Similarly, Blessed Jesus in God means that Blessed Jesus is in God and no “part of Blessed Jesus” is without God. God in Blessed Jesus means that God is in Blessed Jesus and “no part of God” is out of Blessed Jesus.
These both conditions can be true if Blessed Jesus is equivalent to full God i.e. Triune God. So when Blessed Jesus crucified and died, Triune God also crucified and died. This results contradicts accepted Christian view of Crucifixion of Blessed Jesus, therefore, “Blessed Jesus in God & God in Blessed Jesus” contradicts accepted Crucifixion as well as Trinity.

Answer 3:
Trinitarians are heretics in the eye of Blessed Jesus, because they forged not only term of Trinity but also its definition {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God}, three persons, three, same essence no parts words to define concept of God unknown and untaught to disciples. If these words would be basic requirement of salvation, then Blessed Jesus and his disciples how can get salvation? Answer is that Trinitarians are heretics.
Trinitarians fail to grasp the unity of God taught by Blessed Jesus and Prophets. But they are fast enough to pick up councils of 4th century which invents those words as basic requirement of salvation (concept of God), never spoken and heard by any Prophet from Adam till Blessed Jesus? i.e. the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God}

Answer 4:
If neither term of Trinity nor definition of Trinity {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} is basic requirement of salvation in times of Blessed Jesus, then Unitarians are also Christians with this standard and how can you call them heretic?
Lets see what is heresy?

Heresy is any belief or theory that is strongly at variance with established beliefs or customs. Heresy is distinct from both apostasy, which is the explicit renunciation of one’s religion, principles or cause, and blasphemy, which is irreverence toward religion.

Therefore, for a Heresy, the pre-requisite is “Established belief”. Is Trinity an established belief by Blessed Jesus and did he speak the most clear words to remove all doubts in Trinity and define it? Did Blessed Jesus ever hear or spoke that: Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God?
Did Blessed Jesus ever speak and hear number “three” (this word was present in times of Blessed Jesus and he might have spoken it thousands of times) to “establish” concept of God to Christians? Did Blessed Jesus ever say, that God has “three” persons, and Son is related to my body with this relation or some such relation that you cannot understand? No! Blessed Jesus never said “I am a member of Triune God” or “Behold! I am a person of Trinity”. No, he never said, therefore, neither “term” of Trinity, nor “definition” of Trinity were “established” by Blessed Jesus.
In the absence of such establishment, there is no pre-requiste of Heresy of “Trinity as established belief”. And therefore, Unitarian Christians are not violating an established belief in times of Blessed Jesus, but they are following Blessed Jesus and violating 4th century councils inventing term and definition of Trinity never spoken and heard by Blessed Jesus and Prophets from Adam till Moses. So Christians of 4th century are heretics, and not Unitarian Christians.
If you still insist that Unitarians are “Heretics”, then refute my arguments here and prove that Unitarians are Heretics.
Answer 5:
One word “Mystery” is often spoken by Trinitarians in context of Trinity. You also wrote: “The Unitarians as heretics who, like the Muslims, fail to grasp the mystery of God as Trinity”.
Did Blessed Jesus say that there is “Mystery” in nature of God? No! Then Why this word “Mystery” is used? Blessed Jesus primary mission was to teach basic requirement of salvation, i.e. concept of God, so, if he didn’t explain concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} to Christians, He taught of One God. Under pagans influence when Trinity was added in Christianity, then questions like Why Blessed Jesus not explain it? How can one be three and three be one? Etc were tried to be hidden behind “Mystery”.
This word “Mystery” has thus two meanings:
One meaning is that Blessed Jesus failed to “describe” true (Trinitarian) nature of God using number “three” (3), and second meaning is to hide contradiction between 1 & 3 in Trinity.

2-MUSHTAQ:

Writing ‘part of the Triune God’ is not an error. The error is in your statement that Triune God has NOT parts because of same substance of three persons. You are providing wrong reason as identity of parts. A book is made of same substance paper, yet it has no parts? It has parts in form of pages each identified with separate page number. Each page is part of book though of same substance.
To define “Part”, also use its opposite word “Whole”. A part is always less than “Whole” and parts can be counted. A page is “part” and book is “whole” and one page is not whole book, many pages combine to make Whole book and parts of book (pages) can be counted.

Your words are “Blessed Jesus is fully Divine, but He is not the whole of the Trinity”. You acknowledged Blessed Jesus is not whole of Trinity (A page is not whole book). Blessed Jesus and other persons are made of same substance (all pages of book are made of same substance), Three persons can be counted as first person father, second person Son and third person Holy Spirit (pages of book can be counted), Blessed Jesus and other two persons are parts of Trinity (all pages are parts of book). Trinity and Triune God are same, therefore, Blessed Jesus is part of Triune God, you have acknowledged that Blessed Jesus is not whole Trinity / Triune God.
You can hide word “parts” behind man made confusion of “substance”, but you cannot hide word “Whole” (Opposite word of Part), which exposes parts of Triune God.

Al Quran: Surah/Chapter 23 – -Mumenoon. Verse 91.
No son did Allah beget, nor is there any god along with Him: (if there were many gods), behold, each god would have taken away what he had created, and some would have lorded it over others! Glory to Allah! (He is free) from the (sort of) things they attribute to Him!

J-JESSICA:
JH:

Writing that God has ‘parts’ is indeed a grievous error, as is comparing the Creator to a physical, man-made object.

J-MUSHTAQ:
I have following two answers:

Answer 1:
Islam, which considers Blessed Jesus a prophet but not divine, teaches the absolute indivisibility of a supremely sovereign and transcendent God. These are Trinitarian Christians which compare Creator to Father Son, physical, man type relations.
So it is not Islam, but Trinitarian Christians who compare Creator to a mortal man having rerlations of father and mother, dying on cross, death of creator or death of part of creator or human part of Creator on cross is indeed a grievous error. Why do you not see here grievous error, as is comparing the Creator to a physical, man-made object?
Answer 2:
If writing that God has ‘parts’ is indeed a grievous error, then using number “three” (Number three was neither spoken nor heard by Blessed Jesus and Prophets to teach concept of God) to teach concept of God is not a grievous error? We Muslims and Unitarian Christians are not using number “three” to show parts of God; but these are Trinitarian Christians who are responsible to use number three to express three parts/ three persons practically and orally refusing parts of God.

K-JESSICA:
Let us take the shamrock. It has three leaves, the first is not the second, the second is not the third, and they are one shamrock not three. Three leaves of the same substance, not one leaf, not three parts, but one shamrock with three leaves. So with the Trinity, Three Persons, not one, where the Father is not the Son, the Son is not the Father, and neither is the Spirit, but all are in each other – even as Blessed Jesus tells us in John 14:7-11.

K-MUSHTAQ:
I have following three answers:
Answer 1:
The shamrock refers to the young sprigs of clover or trefoil. It is known as a symbol of Ireland, with St. Patrick having used it as a metaphor for the Christian Trinity, according to legend.
Let’s repeat the definition of Trinity formula before discussing example of Shamrock. “Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God.”

Lets compare Shamrock with Trinity, we have following three equations:
Three Persons = Three leaves
One full and complete Triune God = One full and complete Shamrock
One substance = One Green Chlorophyll
One Whole = One Shamrock, three parts=three leaves
Has Triune God also one “whole” and “three” parts?

Now convert Trinity definition for Shamrock.
1st leaf is full and complete Shamrock, 2nd leaf is full and complete Shamrock, 3rd leaf is full and complete Shamrock, but there are not three Shamrocks, but one full and complete Shamrock.
You see internal contradiction here? How can one leaf be full and complete Shamrock? How can part be Whole? It shows Shamrock example makes no help to Trinity, but instead reveals internal contradiction in Trinity.
Man made substance confusion makes no help to hide parts of God! The one substance (Green Chlorophyll) is of course in three parts equally divided among three leaves, and Christians claim that there are not three parts due to one substance, but this substance is also in form of “parts”.

Your words “one shamrock with three leaves” also show that you consider three leafs as three persons and one shamrock as one Triune God.
Answer 2:
Let’s repeat same with my example of three page Book that I presented to refute your substance confusion.
Three persons = Three pages
One God = One Book
One substance = One paper.

Convert Trinity definition for book:
1st page is full and complete book, 2nd page is full and complete book, 3rd page is full and complete book, but there are not three books, but one full and complete book.

Again Trinity reveals internal contradiction and substance confusion makes no help to hide parts of God! The substance (paper) is of course in three parts equally divided among three pages, and Christians claim that there are not three parts due to one substance, but this substance is also in form of “parts”.
John 14:7-11 has already been answered in ‘E’ above.

Answer 3:
It is better now to contrast Trinity with Tritheism and Monotheism to find out what is the difference among them?
We compare by definition.

Definition of Trinity: “Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God.”
Definition of Tritheism: “Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, these are three gods and not One God.”
Definition of Monotheism: By the Encyclopædia Britannica as “Belief in the existence of one god or in the oneness of God”.

Where is Internal Contradiction and Confusion?
Answer: It is in Trinity, and not in Tritheism and Monotheism.
What is reason of internal contradiction in Trinity?
Answer: Trinity externally claims to be Monotheist, but it is internally tritheism with merely claim or label of Monotheism pasted upon it. This label cannot make it monotheist. For example, if you paste label of “It is chair with one leg only” on a chair which has four legs, Will chair be considered a chair with one leg? No! But instead, it will be called a contradiction between label and core reality of chair. A contradiction or a lie, which is what Trinity actually is, as revealed by comparing definition of Trinity with Tritheism and Monotheism.

3-MUSHTAQ:
Your next misunderstanding is to divide Godhead. I am not asking you to divide “Godhead”, My question is about “Fatherhead”. You have acknowledged Blessed Jesus is not Son of himself and Son and Holy Spirit are not fathers. You have accepted division of “Fatherhead” restricted to one person only. Blessed Jesus is Son of God, but God as you say cannot be divided into parts then Is Blessed Jesus also Son of himself? You have refused it, then in Fatherhead of Blessed Jesus, Son and Holy Spirit are already excluded. Now my question to you, Blessed Jesus is Son of what? Is He Son of Godhead which includes him as well (Godhead cannot be divided) and he is also among his own fathers?

Al Quran: Surah/Chapter 005 – Al-Mâ’idah. Verse 75.
The Messiah, son of Mary (Blessed Jesus), was no other than a messenger, messengers (the like of whom) had passed away before him. And his mother (Mary) was a saintly woman. And they both used to eat (earthly) food. See how we make the revelations clear for them, and see how they are turned away!

L-JESSICA:
JH:
There is no ‘Fatherhead’. There is the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. Blessed Jesus is the Son of the Father, not the Godhead.

L-MUSHTAQ:
I have following two answers:
Answer 1:
Thank you! Refusing Fatherhead is refusing of relation of Father and Son in a Trinity. It seems some sign of meting of ice of Trinity!!!
What is difference between “Fatherhood” and “Father”?
Take an example, if you say Mr. Abraham has not childhood, it is equivalent to say he is not a child. Similarly, if you refuse Fatherhood of Mr. Peter, then it will mean that Peter is not a father. Similarly, your words There is no ‘Father prove that you disbelieve in relation between father and son in Trinity.

Answer 2:
Next you wrote Blessed Jesus is NOT Son of Godhead? My sentence has clear meaning, but its words need little balancing with grammar to clarify it. It can have two forms.
Blessed Jesus is not Son of God OR Blessed Jesus has no divine sonship with Godhead.
Using noun with noun and adjective with adjective.

Now will you also comment; there is NO Divine Sonship in Trinity?

M-JESSICA:
Muslims do not understand that the Godhead is made of Father, Son and Holy Ghost; that does not divide God any more than three leaves divides the shamrock.
M-MUSHTAQ:
Example of shamrock and example of book already have been discussed and it shows that they contradict Trinity instead of proving it. Therefore, more appropriate sentence will be:
Christians do not understand that the Godhead is made of Father, Son and Holy Ghost; each one is full God, which is either three parts of God or Tritheism with label of monotheism pasted.

N-JESSICA:
To prevent this becoming inordinately long, I shall finish in a second post, where I will then ask some questions of my own.
N-MUSHTAQ:
OKI you have released this second post with your questions.
Now I shall start answering it.

In the end; I thank you for taking time and effort to reply me.

Now a Summary is just coming of this so long dialogue!

2.

SUMMARY – Re: Dialogue with a Muslim friend: part 1
Title of Dialogue Summary: Divine Sonship and Trinity
Date of Summary: 14 Sep 2013
Summary compression ratio: 20 pages summarized to 8 pages. (2.5:1)
Dialogue between: Muhummad Mushtaq Tariq & Jessica Hoff

Thank you Madam Jessica for a nice and friendly discussion here. Our dialogue is friendly and tension free and blockage free. If you are unwilling to answer any question; plz frankly tell me and I shall add it in list of pending questions to be discussed later.
Now, I present Summary of my Detailed and full reply that I sent on same date (14 Sep 2013) to you:
You may Answer Summary; Answer of Summary will be enough to continue dialogue. But before answering any summary point, please see once again corresponding point in my detailed reply, so to avoid any duplication in dialogue.

CONTENTS OF SUMMARY
This Summary has 11 points.
1-Don’t Say “Three” – Stop
2-Majestic plural is not proof of Triune God
3-Metaphors of God are not proof of Triune God
4-Belief in Triune God is not belief of Old nations
5-Early Church Fathers have not unique ID as Trinitarian Christians
6-Early Church Fathers are not Superior to Blessed Jesus and Prophets
7-Unitarian Christians are not Heretics
8-Triune God has three parts
9-Metaphor of St. Patrick proves three parts of Triune God
10-Trinity is Tritheism with label of Monotheism
11-Divine Sonship contradicts Trinity

1-Don’t Say “Three” – Stop:
The problem is that Trinity is wrong (e.g. Father and Son are equal in age) because Christians do not understand the teachings of Prophets of Old Testament in Previous centuries, nor the teachings of Blessed Jesus.
Why did Adam, Noah, David, Solomon, Moses and Blessed Jesus never speak and hear following words required to clarify basic requirement of salvation (i.e. Concept of God / Trinity)?:
(1) Trinity (2) Three Persons (3) Triune God (4) Three (5) Same substance, no three parts.
Blessed Jesus and Prophets always used Number ONE, Never Number THREE to teach concept of God to their nations. God is not author of confusion, but the pagans of 4th century are authors of confusion who invented these words and introduced in Christianity as basic requirement of salvation concept of God.

If you are a true follower of Blessed Jesus, you should avoid these words listed above as Unitarain Christians avoid use of these words to describe God, in this sense, Unitarian Christians are more closer to Blessed Jesus and Original Christianity of first century, Trinitarian Christians are more closer to Pagans of 4th century than original concept of God in times of Blessed Jesus.
It should be noted that Christians try to defend term of Trinity not found in Bible and absent in times of Blessed Jesus, but they give no comment on number “three” (listed above) which is present in Bible and times of Blessed Jesus, but Blessed Jesus never used this number THREE to teach basic requirement of salvation i.e. concept of God. What Quran says, is confirmed by Blessed Jesus his avoiding number three to define concept of God.

Surah/Chapter 004 – An-Nisâ. Verse 171.
O People of the Scripture! Do not exaggerate in your religion nor utter aught concerning Allah save the truth. The Messiah, Blessed Jesus son of Mary, was only a messenger of Allah, and His word which He conveyed unto Mary, and a spirit from Him. So believe in Allah and His messengers, and say not “THREE”. Cease! (it is) better for you! Allah is only One God. Far is it removed from His transcendent majesty that he should have a son. His is all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth. And Allah is sufficient as Defender.

2-Majestic plural is not proof of Triune God:
As a support of three persons of God, Christians claim that the word Elohim is used thousands of times for “God”; Adonai is used hundreds of times for “Lord”; both of these words are plural nouns in Hebrew.
We Muslims answer it by saying that it is in fact the majestic plural (pluralis maiestatis in Latin, literally, “the plural of majesty”), is the use of a plural pronoun to refer to a single person holding a high office, such as a monarch, bishop, or pope. It is also called the royal pronoun, the royal “we” or the Victorian “we”.
In Quran, Allah has also used “We” as majestic plural, We all know that Quran strongly advocates for one God. Therefore, Majestic plural is not a proof of many persons of God in Old Testament.

In the Hebrew Bible Elohim, when meaning the God of Israel, is mostly grammatically singular. In Hebrew the ending -im, mainly indicates a masculine plural. However with Elohim the construction is grammatically singular, (i.e. it governs a singular verb or adjective) when referring to the Hebrew God, but grammatically plural elohim (i.e. taking a plural verb or adjective) when used of pagan divinities (Psalms 96:5; 97:7). Note that human beings can also have names with plural endings, such as Ephraim, the son of Joseph. Note that Ephraim is one person, not multiple persons. Similarly, Elohim is one, not three.

Surah/Chapter 007 – Al-A’râf. Verse 117.
And WE inspired Moses (saying): Throw thy staff! And lo! it swallowed up their lying show.

3-Metaphors of God are not proof of Triune God:
God speaking (e.g. Genesis 1:3). But does this mean that God has vocal cords?
God seeing (Genesis 1:4). Does God have eyes with pupils and retinas?
God walking (Genesis 3:8). Does God have legs?
God making clothes for Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:21). Does God have hands?
God smelling a sweet savior from Noah’s sacrifice (Genesis 8:21). Does God have a nose and olfactory receptors?
If we say we take Genesis ‘literally’, doesn’t that mean insisting that these descriptions are literal, too? And “faces” or “presences” or “persons” of God are also merely literally.
And also note that Definition of Trinity {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} doesn’t require to bring faith on “faces” of God. So faces of God is no proof of Trinity.
In the New Testament, the Lord Blessed Jesus Christ tells us that ‘God is spirit’ (John 4:24). This indicates that God is not material and does not have a body, so He is not visible to, or discernible by, our bodily senses.

Surah/Chapter 112 – Al-Ikhlâs. Verse 4.
And there is none COMPARABLE unto Him.

4-Belief in Triune God is not belief of Old nations:
As a basic opinion about references from Old Testament; We Muslims have one claim about Trinity in Old Testament.
“Not even a single nation & Prophet from Adam till Moses believed in Christian concept of God i.e. Trinity : Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but there are not three gods, but One full and complete God).
The concept of God is basic requirement of salvation and it is to be first teaching and main teaching of a Prophet, All Prophets taught to believe in One God.

Surah/Chapter 012 – Yûsuf. Verse 38.
And I have followed the religion of my fathers, ABRAHAM and Isaac and Jacob. It never was for us to attribute aught as partner to Allah. This is of the bounty of Allah unto us (the seed of ABRAHAM) and unto mankind; but most men give not thanks.

5-Early Church Fathers have not unique ID as Trinitarian Christians:
Word Of God In Christianity: Part of God which was “with” God but also “fully” God and then became Blessed Jesus the Son of God.
Word Of God In Islam: God’s command “Be!” which resulted in Blessed Jesus’ conception in the womb of Mary without the need for a human father.
Holy Spirit In Christianity: The third member of the Triune God, but also “fully” God in every respect.
Holy Spirit In Islam: He is the angel Gabriel. The angel Gabriel is highly esteemed as the “Trustworthy Spirit”

Merely use of a word by a man doesn’t necessarily mean that he believes in it in the same meaning. Take an example; Muslims, Unitarian Christians and Trinitarian Christians all believe in (i) God, (ii) Word of God and (iii) Holy Spirit; Does it mean that they all believe in Trinity? Answer is No.
Then how can we identify who is Trinitarian and who is not? Answer of this question is definition of Trinity {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God}
This definition of Trinity was neither spoken nor heard by any Prophet from Adam till Moses, and even Blessed Jesus also never hear and spoke these words, but pagans of 4th century invented it as “basic requirement of salvation in Christianity”.

As example, let’s discuss an early Church father Polycarp (70-155/160). Consider his words: “O Lord God almighty… I bless you and glorify you through the eternal and heavenly high priest Blessed Jesus Christ, your beloved Son, through whom be glory to you, with Him and the Holy Spirit, both now and forever” ( PG 5.1040).”
His words don’t help Trinitarian Christians, four reasons are:
(a)He is blessing to “God”, he is not blessing “Triune God” or Trinity.
(b)He is calling Blessed Jesus a “high priest”, not full and complete God in every respect or second member of Triune God.
(c) He is calling him Son (Many people are called Son of God in Bible, Adam lacked both father and mother, and is also called Son of God in Luke 3 :38. So Adam is also Son of God without adding him in Trinity; therefore, Son of God doesn’t necessarily mean member of Trinity, but it may be like Adam Son of God without concept of Trinity). So Is this Son with reference of Trinity or Son like Adam? Polycarp is not telling here that Son is second member of Triune God or full and complete God in every respect.
(d)He is not saying here that Holy Spirit is third member of Triune God and also full and complete God in every respect. Muslims and Unitarian Christians also believe in Holy Spirit without Trinity, same is doing here Polycarp.

Surah/Chapter 005 – Al-Mâ’idah. Verse 72 to 74.
They surely disbelieve who say: Lo! Allah is the Messiah, son of Mary. The Messiah (himself) said: O Children of Israel, worship Allah, my Lord and your Lord. Lo! whoso ascribeth partners unto Allah, for him Allah hath forbidden paradise. His abode is the Fire. For evil-doers there will be no helpers. They surely disbelieve who say: Lo! Allah is the third of THREE; when there is no Allah save the One Allah. If they desist not from so saying a painful doom will fall on those of them who disbelieve. Will they not rather turn unto Allah and seek forgiveness of Him? For Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.

6-Early Church Fathers are not Superior to Blessed Jesus and Prophets:
Even if we agree that these Church fathers before 4th century were defining basic requirement of salvation, the concept of God {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} then another interesting question is raised:
“Are these Church fathers more intelligent than Blessed Jesus and his disciples?” Are these Church fathers more Nobel than all those Prophets from Adam till Moses who never speak and hear number three (3) to teach basic requirement of salvation concept of God (Trinity) to their nations?

Surah/Chapter 005 – Al-Mâ’idah. Verse 44.
It was We who revealed the law (to Moses): therein was guidance and light. By its standard have been judged the Jews, by the prophets who bowed (as in Islam) to Allah’s will, by the rabbis and the doctors of law: for to them was entrusted the protection of Allah’s book, and they were witnesses thereto: therefore fear not men, but fear me, and sell not my signs for a miserable price. If any do fail to judge by (the light of) what Allah hath revealed, they are (no better than) Unbelievers.

7-Unitarian Christians are not Heretics
Trinitarian Christians claim that Unitarian Christians are Heretics. (Here in this discussion; Unitarians are those Christians who just reject Trinity). Let’s see Definition of Heresy:
Heresy is any belief or theory that is strongly at variance with established beliefs or customs. Heresy is distinct from both apostasy, which is the explicit renunciation of one’s religion, principles or cause, and blasphemy, which is irreverence toward religion.
Therefore, for a Heresy, the pre-requisite is “Established belief”. Is Trinity an established belief by Prophets from Adam till Moses? Answer is No. Neither term Trinity, nor definition of Trinity {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} and even Number “Three” was never used by any Prophet to teach concept of God to their nations.
Did Blessed Jesus hear and speak term Trinity, or its definition {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} or even Number “three” to tell about exact number of persons in Triune God? Answer is No.
Did Blessed Jesus ever say, that God has “three” persons, and Son is related to my body with this relation or some such relation that you cannot understand? No! Blessed Jesus never said “I am a member of Triune God” or “Behold! I am a person of Trinity”. No, he never said, therefore, neither “term” of Trinity, nor “definition” of Trinity were “established” by Blessed Jesus.
In the absence of Trinity as an established belief, there is no pre-requisite of Heresy of “Trinity as established belief”. And therefore, Unitarian Christians are not violating an established belief in times of Blessed Jesus, but they are following Blessed Jesus and by definition of Heresy, Unitarian Christians are not Heretics, but follower of Blessed Jesus and Prophets.
If neither term of Trinity nor definition of Trinity {Trinity formula = Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God} is basic requirement of salvation in times of Blessed Jesus & Prophets, then Unitarians are also Christians with this standard and they are not Heretics.

Surah/Chapter 005 – Al-Mâ’idah. Verse 14.
And with those who say: “Lo! we are CHRISTIANS,” We made a covenant, but they forgot a part of that whereof they were admonished. Therefor We have stirred up enmity and hatred among them till the Day of Resurrection, when Allah will inform them of their handiwork.

8-Triune God has three parts
Trinitarian Christians claim that: “Triune God has not three parts because of same substance of three persons. Blessed Jesus is fully divine, but He is not the whole of the Trinity”

This claim is incorrect. Triune God has three parts. Substance is not identity of parts, but whole is identity of parts. Further more, Whole and parts have following characteristics, all also found in three persons and Triune God. (i)There is One Whole and more than one Part. (ii) Parts are distinct from each other and therefore, they can be counted. (iii) Parts may be or may not be made of same substance (iv)If three parts are made of same substance, then that substance is divided among all parts.

A book is made of same substance paper, yet it has no parts? It has parts in form of pages each identified with separate page number. Each page is part of book though of same substance.
A page is “part” and book is “whole” and one page is not whole book, many pages combine to make Whole book and parts of book (pages) can be counted.

Blessed Jesus is not whole of Trinity (A page is not whole book). Blessed Jesus and other persons are made of same substance (all pages of book are made of same substance), Three persons can be counted as first person father, second person Son and third person Holy Spirit (pages of book can be counted), Blessed Jesus and other two persons are parts of Trinity (all pages are parts of book). Trinity and Triune God are same, therefore, Blessed Jesus is part of Triune God, Christians acknowledge that Blessed Jesus is not whole Trinity / Triune God.
Christians can hide word “parts” behind man made confusion of “substance”, but they cannot hide word “Whole” (Opposite word of Part), which exposes parts of Triune God.

Al Quran: Surah/Chapter 23 – -Mumenoon. Verse 91.
No son did Allah beget, nor is there any god along with Him: (if there were many gods), behold, each god would have taken away what he had created, and some would have lorded it over others! Glory to Allah! (He is free) from the (sort of) things they attribute to Him!

9-Metaphor of St. Patrick proves three parts of Triune God:
The shamrock refers to the young sprigs of clover or trefoil. It is known as a symbol of Ireland, with St. Patrick having used it as a metaphor for the Christian Trinity, according to legend.
Let’s repeat the definition of Trinity formula before discussing example of Shamrock. “Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God.”

Let’s compare Shamrock with Trinity, we have following three equations:
Three Persons = Three leaves
One full and complete Triune God = One full and complete Shamrock
One substance = One Green Chlorophyll
One Whole = One Shamrock, three parts=three leaves
Has Triune God also one “whole” and “three” parts?

Now convert Trinity definition for Shamrock.
1st leaf is full and complete Shamrock, 2nd leaf is full and complete Shamrock, 3rd leaf is full and complete Shamrock, but there are not three Shamrocks, but one full and complete Shamrock.
You see internal contradiction here? How can one leaf be full and complete Shamrock? How can part be Whole? It shows Shamrock example makes no help to Trinity, but instead reveals internal contradiction in Trinity.
Man made substance confusion makes no help to hide parts of God! The one substance (Green Chlorophyll) is of course in three parts equally divided among three leaves, and Christians claim that God cannot be divided into three parts, but 1/3rd substance of green Chlorophyll is divided equally among three leaves, it shows God is divided into three parts which contradicts with claim of Christians.

Surah/Chapter 017 – Al-Isrâ. Verse 56.
Say: Cry unto those (SAINTs and angels) whom ye assume beside Him, yet they have no power to rid you of misfortune nor to change.

10-Trinity is Tritheism with label of Monotheism:
It is useful to contrast Trinity with Tritheism and Monotheism to find out what is the difference among them?
We compare by definition.
Definition of Trinity: “Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, but these are not three gods, but One full and complete God.”
Definition of Tritheism: “Father is full and complete God, Son is full and complete God, Holy Spirit is full and complete God, these are three gods and not One God.”
Definition of Monotheism: By the Encyclopædia Britannica as “Belief in the existence of one god or in the oneness of God”.

Where is Internal Contradiction and Confusion?
Answer: It is in Trinity, and not in Tritheism and Monotheism.
What is reason of internal contradiction in Trinity?
Answer: Trinity externally claims to be Monotheist, but it is internally tritheism with merely claim or label of Monotheism pasted upon it. This label cannot make it monotheist. For example, if you paste label of “It is chair with one leg only” on a chair which has four legs, Will chair be considered a chair with one leg? No! But instead, it will be called a contradiction between label and core reality of chair. A contradiction or a lie, which is what Trinity actually is.
Christians do not understand that the Godhead is made of Father, Son and Holy Ghost; each one is full and complete God, which is either three parts of Triune God or three gods (Tritheism) with label of monotheism pasted.

Surah/Chapter 003 – Al-Imrân. Verse 70-71.
O People of the Scripture! Why disbelieve ye in the revelations of Allah, when ye (yourselves) BEAR witness (to their truth ) ? O People of the Scripture! Why confound ye truth with falsehood and knowingly conceal the truth?

11-Divine Sonship contradicts Trinity:
Trinitarian Christians have two mutually contradicting beliefs (i) God cannot be divided into parts & (ii) Blessed Jesus is not Son of himself and not Son of Holy Spirit.

Blessed Jesus is himself God and also Son of God, but God as they say cannot be divided into parts then Is Blessed Jesus also Son of himself? Christians refuse it, then question is; Blessed Jesus is Son of what? Is He Son of God (God cannot be divided in three parts) which includes him as well (due to Trinity) and he is also among his own fathers?

Al Quran: Surah/Chapter 005 – Al-Mâ’idah. Verse 75.
The Messiah, son of Mary (Blessed Jesus), was no other than a messenger, messengers (the like of whom) had passed away before him. And his mother (Mary) was a saintly woman. And they both used to eat (earthly) food. See how we make the revelations clear for them, and see how they are turned away!

In the end; Madam Jessica! I thank you for taking time and effort to reply me. Now you may read my Summary of our Dialogue happily and respond happily; it is a friendly dialogue and we are talking with each other for betterment and goodness of each other.

13 thoughts on “Dialogue with a Muslim: links”

  1. Madam Jessica! I am writing answer to your posts. It is really very exciting to read and then reply to your posts. I am happy that Rob also joined our conversation.
    You have shown here your four posts as reply to me:
    (1) Basics
    (2) Early Fathers
    (3) Jesus and Trinity
    (4) Other objections

    But in end of web page, I see Link to an article “Holy name” that addresses me. I guess your actual response consists of 5 parts. The 5th part is “Holy name”, you gave its link in footer, but did not give its link in the header / upper portion of this main page/ home page of our friendly dialogue:
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/dialogue-with-a-muslim/

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  2. A question of curiosity, how do we explain Isaiah 9:6? …may have missed this along the way. Thanks.

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  3. One of the categories of evidences for the deity of Jesus in scripture that I recommended Mushtaq to look up was the OT texts that referred to the Messiah as God.

    It is also interesting here that the second person of the trinity is called ‘Eternal Father’, which not only attributes to Christ eternity but also fatherhood. God – the triune God is our Father. We see this also when Jesus promise that by sending the Holy Spirit we will not be ‘fatherless’, so implying that the Holy Spirit is our father also.
    God is our father – The Father is Father in relationship within the trinity. That may be why Jesus says “I go to my Father and your Father’ rather than saying I go to our father – the two different types of relationship may be in view.

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  4. Greetings Madam Jessica!

    Here I want to talk about design of Home page of our dialogue and how can it be made better. The Home page is:

    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/dialogue-with-a-muslim/

    You have posted our dialogue links post wise, fine. But I suggest, you can still improve this home page further, by ALSO providing date wise list of links. It will be less confusing for those readers who came for the first time here and want to read/comment date wise dialogue.
    You can retain current POST WISE LINKS, but in addition to that, I suggest you to add following DATE WISE LINKS as well.

    HISTORY OF OUR DIALOGUE (Sep ~ Nov 2013)

    LEVEL 1: First two days: Chat (6~7 Sep 2013)
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/06/where-prayer-has-been-valid/

    LEVEL 2: Foundation of Dialogue: Five Part reply (8 Sep 2013)
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/06/where-prayer-has-been-valid/

    LEVEL 3: Two Articles (8 Sep 2013)
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/08/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-part-1/
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/08/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-part-2/

    LEVEL 4: Answer to Part1 + Summary # 1 (14 Sep 2013)
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/08/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-part-1/

    LEVEL 5: Five Articles (15~ 17 Sep 2017)
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/15/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-some-basics/
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/15/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-early-fathers/
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/16/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-jesus-trinity/
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/15/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-the-holy-name/
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/17/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-other-objections/

    LEVEL 6: Answering All 5+1 outstanding articles (6 Oct 2013)
    Re: Dialogue with a Muslim friend: part2
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/08/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-part-2/
    SUMMARY – Re: Dialogue with a Muslim friend: part 2
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/08/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-part-2/
    Re: Dialogue with a Muslim friend:Some basics
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/15/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-some-basics/
    Re: Dialogue with a Muslim friend: early Fathers
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/15/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-early-fathers/
    Re: Dialogue with a Muslim friend:Blessed Jesus & Trinity
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/16/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-jesus-trinity/
    Re: Dialogue with a Muslim friend: The Holy Name.
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/15/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-the-holy-name/
    Re: Dialogue with a Muslim friend: other objections
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/09/17/dialogue-with-a-muslim-friend-other-objections/

    LEVEL 7: The 8+1 articles in response to Level 6 (6 ~ 11 Oct 2013)
    Replying to Mushtaq: on the Holy Name
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/10/06/replying-to-mushtaq-on-the-holy-name/
    Answering Mushtaq: St John
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/10/06/answering-mushtaq-st-john-part-1/
    Answering Mushtaq: St John’s Gospel
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/10/06/answering-mushtaq-st-johns-gospel/
    The Church and its Book
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/the-church-and-its-book/
    Logos & Son of God
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/10/07/logos-son-of-god/
    Triads, Trinity and Paraclete
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/10/08/triads-trinity-and-paraclete/
    Mushtaq: misunderstanding the Canon
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/dialogue-with-a-muslim/
    Fatherhood?
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/10/09/fatherhood/
    Easter challenge: the women come to the tomb
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/10/10/easter-challenge-the-women-come-to-the-tomb/
    Easter challenge: Inside the Tomb
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/10/10/easter-challenge-inside-the-tomb/
    Easter challenge: The first appearance
    https://jessicahof.wordpress.com/2013/10/11/easter-challenge-the-first-appearance/

    Regards,
    Muhummad Mushtaq Tariq

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