In the Name of Allah, the Merciful, the Compassionate


By Ahmad Deedat

 In one of my books - "Who Moved the Stone?" I had promised to deal             
with the anomaly, where believers were reading simple English, yet were         
so conditioned that they were understanding exactly the OPPOSITE of what        
they were reading. The following story from real life will not only ill-        
ustrate the point but will also elucidate our present case - "RESURREC-         
TION OR RESUSCITATION?"                                                         
     I was about to leave for the Transvaal on a lecture tour, so I             
phoned my friend Hafiz Yusuf Dadoo of Standerton, informing him of my           
impending visit, as well as to enquire whether he needed anything from          
Durban. He said that as he was taking up Hebrew, I should try and obtain        
a Bible in the Hebrew language with a translation in English side by            
     I went to the "BIBLE HOUSE" in Durban. Without any difficulty I            
found the appropriate Bible for my friend, the "Authorised Version,"            
also known as the "King James Version," looking for one with the best           
print and at the cheapest price, I noticed the lady behind the counter          
had lifted up the telephone to speak to someone. I was out of hearing           
distance, nor was I interested, but after an exchange with the person           
on the other side of the line she put her hand on the mouthpiece and            
addressed me: "Excuse me, sir, are you Mr. Deedat?" I said, "Yes." She          
said, "The Supervisor of the Bible Society would like my pleasure,"             
I answered. She spoke a few more words into the telephone and replaced          
the receiver. I said with a smile, "I thought that you were ringing the         
police." (perhaps because of the number of Bibles I was handling). -            
She laughed and said, "No, it was the Rev. Roberts, the Supervisor, who         
wishes to speak to you."                                                        
WINNING A CONVERT                                                               
     Presently, Rev. Roberts approached me and after introducing himself        
he gestured to me to hand over to him the Bible which I was holding in          
my hand. I handed the book. He opened it and began reading to me - "and         
this is life eternal that they should know Thee the only True God and           
Jesus Christ whom Thou has sent." (John 17:3). (Subsequently, I checked         
up the Gospel references of his quotations).                                    
     After having listened to his reading of this scripture, I responded        
with the words: "I accept!" - meaning the implication of the Message he         
was trying to convey to me. I did not tell him then that what he was try        
ing to convey to me was the same as the Holy Qura'an was telling mankind        
for the past fourteen hundred years - that all must believe in the 'ONE         
words of the Holy Qur'an are as follows:-                                       
     "MOST CERTAINLY THE MESSIAH,                                               
      JESUS THE SON OF MARY,                                                    
     WAS AN APOSTLE OF ALLAH AND HIS                                            
     WHICH HE BESTOWED ON MARY AND A                                            
     SPIRIT PROCEEDING FROM HIM:                                                
     SO BELIEVE IN ALLAH AND HIS                                                
     APOSTLES..."          Holy Qur'an 4:171                                    
LOVE ONE ANOTHER                                                                
     Rev. Roberts must have been elated to hear my words- "I ACCEPT,"           
to his first quotation. He quickly opened the Bible in another place and        
began reading these words attributed to Jesus:-                                 
     "A new commandment I give unto you. That ye love one another; as           
I have loved you, that ye also love one another." "By this shall all men        
know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love for one another."                
                                   John 13:34-35                                
A NEW CONVERT?                                                                  
     When he had finished reading these verses, I remarked-"Very good!"         
He was greatly encouraged with my comment. I sincerely meant what I said        
and there was no pretence. The Reverend found yet another quotation to          
clinch a convert for Christ. He began:-                                         
     "Judge not that ye be not judged." "For with what judgement ye             
judge, ye shall be judged; and with what measure ye mete, it shall be           
measured to you again.        Matthew 7:1-2                                     
     To this quotation I responded with the words, "I agree!" My only           
reason for agreeing and accepting everything that the Reverend was rea-         
ding to me was not of the "special discount" I was getting from the             
Bible Society on my purchases, but because these particular quotations          
were conveying the same message and ideals which Allah "Subhanahoo Wa-          
Ta'aala" was commanding the Muslims to preach and practice. I would be          
spiritually jaundiced to take exceptions to what was common to both of          
us - the MUSLIM and the CHRISTIAN. For me to say that an identical mess-        
age from my Book (the Holy Qur'an) was VERY GOOD, but the same message          
in his Book (the Holy Bible) was VERY BAD would be hypocritical in the          
extreme. It would be soul shaming untruth.                                      
THE PURPOSE                                                                     
     What was the real purpose of the Reverend's reading the Scripture          
to me? Indeed, I was getting a special discount on all my purchases from        
the Bible Society and I was perhaps the only non-Christian to get such a        
discount, though it was depending purely on a business transaction, and         
this information must have been passed on the the Reverend as the Head          
of the Bible Society; that I was a Muslim there was no mistaking my iden        
tity, for my beard and my headgear were the badges of my Faith, easily          
recognised as such in this part of the world; and that, despite my nume-        
rous purchases of the Bibles in English (various versions), in Zulu,            
Afrikaans, Urdu, Arabic and other languages, I was not yet "converted."         
Perhaps, what I really needed was a gentle push, the Supervisor must            
have been told. Hence the recitation of the preceding quotations to me.         
The implication of this reading was that I had probably not read those          
beautiful passages; how else was it possible, then, that I had not yet          
embraced Christianity?                                                          
A PROBLEM                                                                       
     The Reverend gentleman had taken the role of a teacher who wanted          
to teach, who wanted to impart new knowledge to his pupil.                      
     Since I am commanded by my Prophet (Peace be upon him) to "SEEK            
BE IN CHINA," I wanted to learn. I said, "I agree with all that you have        
read to me, but I have a problem with your Bible." "What problem have           
you got?" he asked. I said, "Please open the Gospel of St.Luke,Chapter 3        
Verse 23." This he did. I said, "Please read." He read:- "And Jesus him-        
self began to be about thirty years of age, being (as was supposed) the         
son of Joseph, which was the son of Heli,"       Luke 3:23                      
     I drew the Reverend's attention to the words - "(AS WAS SUPPOSED)."        
I said, "Do you see that the words 'as was supposed' are written within         
brackets?" He said that he saw that. I asked him, "Why are the brackets         
there?" He acknowledged, "I don't know, but I could find out for you            
from some Bible scholars." I admired his humility. Though I knew that           
all Supervisors of Bible Houses in South Africa are retired reverends,          
it was possible that this aspect of Bible Knowledge was beyond their            
sphere. I said, "If you do not know, then let me tell you what the bra-         
ckets are doing there in this verse. You do not have to take the trouble        
of looking for a Bible scholar."                                                
     I explained that in the "most ancient" manuscripts of Luke, the            
words '(AS WAS SUPPOSED)' are not there. Your translators felt that with        
out this interpolation the "little lambs" not well grounded in faith,           
might slip and fall into the error of believing that JOSEPH the Carpen-         
ter was the actual physical father of Jesus. So they took the precaution        
of adding their own comment in BRACKETS to avoid any misunderstanding.          
I said, "I am not trying to find fault with your system of adding words         
in brackets to assist the reader, but what intrigues me is that in all          
translations of the Bible in the African and Eastern languages you have         
retained the words "as was supposed" but have REMOVED THE BRACKETS.Coul-        
dn't the nations of the Earth besides the English understand the meaning        
and purpose of the brackets?                                                    
     What is wrong with the Afrikaner?  Why have you eliminated the bra-        
ckets from the Afrikaans Bible? The Supervisor protested, "I didn't do          
it." I said, "I know that you personally did not do it but why have the         
Bible Society that you represent and your Bible scholars been playing           
with the "Word of God?" If God Almighty did not see fit to preserve Luke        
from error what right has anybody to add to or delete from words in the         
"Book of God?" What right have you to manufacture "GODS WORDS?"                 
     The translator's own addition of words in brackets can easily be pu        
into the mouth of St. Luke by merely removing the brackets, and by impli        
cation, if LUke was inspired by God to write what he did, then the inter        
polations automatically become the WORD OR GOD, which really is not the         
case. (More will be said on this subject in the forthcoming publication         
"Is the Bible God's Word?) I concluded my explanation with the words -          
"Your theologians of the day have succeeded where the alchemists of             
yore failed - of turning baser metal into shining gold."                        
THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE                                                            
     At this stage the Reverend introduced irrelevancies into the discu-        
ssion and the subject changed. He made some claims which made me say,           
"You see, sir, you English people do not know your own language." (With         
apologies to my readers whose mother tongue is English). He quickly re-         
torted, "You mean to say that you know my language better than I do?"           
I said, "It would be presumptuous on my part to tell - an Englishman -          
that I understand your language better than you do."                            
     "Then what do you mean that we English people do not know our own          
language?" he demanded. I said again, "You see, sir, you read your Holy         
Scripture in your mother tongue, like every Christian belonging to a            
thousand different language groups, and yet each and every Christian lan        
guage group understands the facts, OPPOSITE to what he is reading." What        
are you refering to?" he asked.                                                 
A GHOST                                                                         
     I continued: "Do you remember the occasion when Jesus returned to          
that upper room after his alleged crucifixion 'and saith unto them, his         
(disciples), Peace be unto you' (Luke 24:36) and his disciples were ter-        
rified on recognising him?" He answered that he remembered that incident        
I enquired, "Why should they be terrified?" When one recognises one's           
long-lost friend or one's beloved, the natural reaction is to feel over-        
joyed, elated and one wants to embrace and kiss the hands and feet of           
the beloved. Why did they get terrified?" The Reverend replied that,            
They (the disciples) thought that they were seeing a ghost." I asked,           
"Did Jesus look like a ghost?" He said, "No." "Then why did they think          
that they were seeing a ghost when he did not look like a ghost?" I que-        
ried. The Reverend was clearly puzzled. I said, "Please allow me to ex-         
DISCIPLES NOT EYE WITNESSES                                                     
     "You see, sir, the disciples of Jesus were not EYE-witnessess or           
EAR-witnesses to the actual happenings of the previous three days, as           
vouched for by St.Mark who says that at the most critical juncture in           
the life of Jesus, "they all forsook him and fled." (Mark 14:50). All           
the knowledge of the disciples regarding their Master was from hearsay.         
They had heard that their master was HANGED ON THE CROSS; they had heard        
that he had GIVEN UP THE GHOST; they had heard that he was DEAD AND BUR-        
IED FOR THREE DAYS. If one is confronted by a person with such a reputa-        
tion then the conclusion is inescapable; they must be seeing A GHOST.           
Little wonder these ten brave men were petrified."                              
    "To disabuse their minds from the fear that gripped them, Jesus rea-        
soned with them. He said, 'Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I my-        
self:' To put it in colloquial English, this is how he told them: WHAT          
who walked and talked with you, broke bread with you - flesh and blood          
in all respects.                                                                
     Why do doubts enter your minds? 'Handle me and see,for a spirit has        
no flesh and bones as you see me have.' (Luke 24:39). In other words he         
is telling them: If I have FLESH and BONES, then I am not a GHOST, not a        
SPOOK and not a SPIRIT!" "Is that right?" I asked. "Yes," he replied.           
I continued that, Jesus is telling them, as recorded in this verse, in          
Basic English, that what the disciples were asked to HANDLE AND SEE'            
was not a translated body, not a metamorphosed body and not a resurrec-         
ted body, because a RESURRECTED body  is a SPIRITUALISED body. He is            
telling them in the clearest language humanly possible that he is NOT           
what they were thinking. They were thinking that he was a SPIRIT, a RE-         
SURRECTED body, one having been brought back from the dead. He is most          
emphatic that HE IS NOT!"                                                       
     "But how can you be so sure that the resurrected body cannot mate-         
rialise physically as Jesus had obviously done?" murmured the Reverend.         
I replied: "Because Jesus had himself pronounced that the resurrected           
bodies get spiritualised." When did he say any such thing?" enquired the        
Reverend. I answered, "Do you remember the incident as recorded in the          
Gospel of St. Luke, Chapter 20, where the learned men of the Jews- 'the         
chief priests and the scribes with the elders'- had come to him with a          
number of posers, and among them was one about a Jewess who had seven           
husbands in turn, one after another according to a Jewish custom, and in        
time all seven husbands and the woman too died?" The Reverend said that         
he did remember the occassion. I continued: "The trap that the religious        
heirarchy was trying to spring on him was; which one of the seven husba-        
nds was going to possess the woman on the 'Other side'- at the resurrec-        
tion ?- since they reasoned with Jesus that the seven brothers"had her".        
There was no problem while they fulfilled their obligation of trying to         
give her a child, because they had possessed her one by one in turn, and        
it was after the death of one that the other had taken her to wife. But         
since at the resurrection all seven will be brought to life simultaneous        
ly, there will be strife in heaven because all seven would want to get          
at her at the same time, specially if they had pleasure with her."              
     "Jesus debunked their false notion of the resurrection, by saying          
that at the resurrection 'neither shall they die any more:' (Luke 20:36)        
meaning that the resurrected persons will be IMMORTALISED. They will not        
be subject to death any more, no more hanger or thirst, no more fatigue.        
In short, all the instruments of death will be powerless against the re-        
surredted body. Jesus continues to explain: "for they (the resurrected          
bodies) are equal unto the angles," that is, that they will be ANGELISED        
- spiritualised, that they will become spirit-creatures, i.e. SPIRITS;          
'and the children of God, for such are the children of the resurrection.'       
                                                  (Luke 20:36)                  
JESUS NOT SPIRITUALISED                                                         
     I was taken off from the theme I was expounding two paragraphs             
above by the Reverend with the challenge,"But how can you be so sure..?"        
To continue from where I had deviated above - 'HE IS NOT' what they were        
thinking, that he was not a SPIRIT, not a GHOST, not a SPOOK. To assure         
them further after having offered his hands and feet for inspection and         
verification that his was a material, physical body, and that all their         
bewilderment and disbelief was unjustified, he asked his disciples:"Have        
you here any meat?" (Meaning something to eat). 'And they gave him a            
piece of broiled fish and of a honeycomb, and he took it, and did eat           
before them.'          (Luke 24:41-43)                                          
A DRAMA ?                                                                       
     What was Jesus trying to prove by all his demonstrations of wanting        
his hands and feet to be handled and chewing and masticating broiled            
fish and honeycomb?                                                             
     Was all this a pretence, make-belief, an act or drama? "NO!" Said          
Schleliermacher in 1819, a hundred years before I was born. Albert -            
Schweizer records him saying, "IF CHRIST HAD ONLY EATEN TO SHOW THAT HE         
BEEN A PRETENCE _ SOMETHING DOCETIC."("In Quest of the Historial Jesus,"        
page 64).                                                                       
     I had not know of Schleliermacher and other Christian scholars who         
over a hundred years ago doubted the death of Jesus on the cross as re-         
corded by Albert Schweizer, when I was discussing this subject with the         
head of the Bible Society.                                                      
NO RESURRECTION                                                                 
     "What is wrong with you (Christian) folk?" Jesus is telling you in         
the most unambiguous language that he is not a SPIRIT - not spirituali-         
sed, not a RESURRECTED person, and yet the whole Christian world belie-         
ves tht he was RESURRECTED, i.e. SPITITUALISED. Who is lying, you or            
him ? How is it possible that you (each and every Christian) are reading        
your Holy Bible in your own mother tongue and yet EACH AND EVERY LANG-          
DING ? If you read the Bible, say, in Hebrew, and pleaded that you did          
not understand what you were reading, I can appreciate this fact. If you        
read it in Greek and pleaded that you did not really understand the imp-        
lications of what was written; I can appreciate this fact also. But the         
anomaly is that you are reading the Book, each and every one, IN HIS OWN        
MOTHER TONGUE, and are trained to understand the OPPOSITE of what is wri        
tten. How have you been brainwashed, or rather, how have you been "Pro-         
grammed," as the Americans would put it.                                        
     "Please tell me as to who is lying ? Is it Jesus or a thousand             
million Christians of the world? Jesus says, "NO!" to his being resurre-        
cted, and all of you say "YES!" Whom are we Muslims to believe, Jesus           
or his so called disciples ? We Muslims would rather believe the Master.        
Did he not say, "The desciple is not greater than the Master."                  
                                                      (matthew 10:24)           
     This was more than the Reverend had bargained for. He politely excu        
sed himself by saying that as he had to get ready to close his office,he        
would look forward to meeting me again. This was sheer evasive polite-          
     With the Bible Society, I won the DEBATE but lost the DISCOUNT ! No        
more discount for me from the Bible Society. But let my loss be your            
gain. If you dear reader, can remove a few cobwebs from your thinking on        
the subject of the 'CRUCIFIXION,' I will be amply rewarded.                     
 Now here are the verses discussed put together :                               
     "....Jesus himself stood in their midst, and said unto them, Peace         
      be unto you.                                                              
     "....But they were terrified, and supposing that they were seeing a        
     "And he said unto them,....                                                
     "Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me and           
      see; for a spirit has no flesh and bones, as you see me have.             
     "And showed them his hands and feet.                                       
     "And while they yet believed not for joy and wondered, he said             
      unto them, Have ye here any meat?                                         
     "And they gave him a piece of broiled fish, and of a honeycomb.            
     "And he took it, and did eat before them."                                 
                                              Luke 24:36-43                     


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