"I (God) will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee (moses), and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him."
There are many verses in the Old Testament that predict
the coming of Jesus (pbuh). This one, however, is not one of them.
This can be clearly seen from the following four points:
a) Like unto moses
Muslims believe in all of the previous prophets. They make no distinction between them, nor do they place one above the others in piety. However, they are all human, and as humans they differ from one another in their characteristics. Let us compare these characteristics:
1) Both Christians and Muslims agree that both Moses and Muhammad (pbut) had fathers and mothers. They both also believe that Jesus (pbuh) had only a mother and no father. Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
2) Both Moses and Muhammad (pbut) married and begat children. Jesus (pbuh) never married nor had any offspring. Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
3) Moses (pbuh) was accepted by the Jews and to this day, as a nation, they accept him as their prophet. Muhammad (pbuh) was accepted by his people, and as a nation, over one billion Muslims around the world accept him as the prophet of Allah. Jesus (pbuh), however, was rejected by his people (the Jews) as stated in the Christian's own Bible: "He (Jesus) came unto his own, but his own received him not" (John 1:11) Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
4) Both Moses and Muhammad (pbut) were kings on Earth in the sense that they had the ultimate power of government, the power to inflict capital punishment. When the Jews brought before Moses (pbuh) the Israelite who had been caught collecting firewood on the Sabbath, Moses had him stoned to death (Numbers 15:36). Muhammad (pbuh) had similar authority. When a woman came before him confessing (with no witnesses) to having committed adultery, he gave her a chance to consider the severity of her claim and the punishment she would receive. When she insisted, he ordered her stoned to death and ordered his companions to respect her for her sincere repentance. Jesus (pbuh), however, explicitly refuted the claim that he had a kingdom on earth. When he was dragged before the Roman Governor Pontious Pilate with a charge of sedition he said: (John 18:36) "Jesus answered, My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight, that I should not be delivered to the Jews: but now is my kingdom not from hence." Jesus (pbuh) would not resort to lying to save his skin. Thus, he had no earthly kingdom. Further, in John 8:1-7 we read the story of the woman who was taken in adultery by the Jews and brought before Jesus (pbuh). They were hoping to trap him by either having him contradict the laws of Moses (pbuh) by not stoning her, or by placing him in a bad position with the Roman empire by taking the law into his own hands and ordering her stoned. Jesus cleverly extracted himself from this predicament by commanding them: "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her." So the woman was set free. Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
5) Both Moses and Muhammad (pbut) came with a new and comprehensive set of laws for their people. The law brought by prophet Moses was named the Judaic Law, and the law brought by prophet Muhammad was named the Shari'ah. Jesus (pbuh) however, as witnessed by Matthew, claimed to have not introduced any new laws, but to have come to renew the law of Moses (pbuh) and to have neither added nor subtracted from it. In Matthew 5:17-18 we read: "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled." Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
6) Moses lead his people in a secret mass exodus from their hometown to Median in an attempt to flee the persecution of their enemies. Muhammad (pbut) too emigrated with his followers from their home town to Madinah in secret in order to flee the torture of their enemies. Jesus, however, never led his followers in a any sort of mass exodus from their hometowns . Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
7) Moses was victorious over his enemies both morally as well as physically. Pharaoh was defeated by Moses and all of his army were drowned in the sea. Muhammad (pbuh) too met his enemies in battle and defeated them all. This too was a moral as well as a physical victory. Jesus (pbuh) on the other hand is claimed in the Bible to have been crucified by his enemies. Thus, his victory was only a moral one. Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
8) Both Moses and Muhammad (pbut) died natural deaths. Jesus (pbuh), is claimed by the Christians to have died violently on the cross. Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
9) Both Moses and Muhammad (pbut) lie buried in the ground. Jesus (pbuh), however, is claimed by the Christians to abide in heaven. Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
10) Most Christians claim that Jesus (pbuh) is God. No Christian or Muslim, however, claims that Moses or Muhammad (pbut) was God. Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
11) Both Moses and Muhammad (pbuh) began their prophetic missions at the age of forty. The Bible tells us that Jesus (pbuh) began at thirty. Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
12) Christians claim that Jesus (pbuh) was resurrected after his death. Neither Muslims nor Christians claim that Moses or Muhammad was resurrected. Therefore, Muhammad is like Moses, but Jesus is unlike Moses.
There are many additional points that could be mentioned
but we will suffice with these for now.
b) Cannot be a Jew
Well, is Muhammad (pbuh) the only prophet who is
"Like unto Moses"? For example, what about
Jesus (pbuh)? Well, we should then notice that Jesus (pbuh) was
"Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou (Jesus), being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria?"
and the Bible specifically denies that this awaited
prophet will be a Jew. We are told that in Deuteronomy:
"And there arose NOT a prophet since in Israel LIKE unto Moses."
This awaited prophet, however, must be "LIKE
unto thee (Moses)." So he will come from OUTSIDE
c) Is from the BRETHREN of the Jews
If this prophet can not be a Jew, then what is left?
In this verse, God speaks to Moses (pbuh) about the
Jews as a racial entity. The awaited prophet is claimed to not
be "from the Jews" or "from among themselves"
but rather "from among their (the Jew's) brethren."
Who are the brethren of the Jewish nation? The Jews are the sons
Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham.
Isaac's older brother was Ishmael, the father of
the Arabs. Thus, the brethren of the Jewish nation is the nation
of the Arabs. This statement is further reinforced by the following
definition of "Brethren" in the Hebrew Dictionary
of the Bible:
"personification of a group of tribes who were regarded as near kinsmen of the Israelites."
Muhammad in the Bible, Jamal Badawi, p. 16
Please compare this expression with that of the Qur'an:
"Indeed Allah has conferred a great favor upon the believers (Muslims) when He sent among them a messenger from among themselves, reciting unto them His verses, purifying them and teaching them the Book and wisdom; although before that they were in manifest error."
The noble Qur'an, Aal-Umran(3):164
There has come unto you (O Muslims) a messenger from among yourselves (Muhammad, pbuh). It grieves him that you should receive any injury or difficulty, full of concern for you, for the believers [he is] full of pity, kind and merciful.
The noble Qur'an, Al-Tawba(9):128
d) Put my words in his mouth
If we were to read the Qur'an we would find that
it contains many verses stating "I am your Lord, so worship
Me" (Al-Anbia: 92, Al-Muminoon: 52), "Verily,
I am Allah" (Taha: 14, Al-Namil: 9, Al-Qasas: 30), "I
am thy Lord" (Taha: 19). These verses are not preceded
by "I heard God say.....," or "And God said....,"
or similar statements which would be the words of a man transmitting
the words of God, rather, their form is that of the first person
who speaks of himself. Neither Muhammad (pbuh) nor any Muslim
ever claimed that Muhammad (pbuh) was God, therefore, Muhammad
(pbuh) was speaking with his mouth the words of God. Similarly,
we can find in the Qur'an more than four hundred verses
of the form "Say (O Muhammad) : ........" In
other words God Almighty is putting His words into Muhammad's
(pbuh) mouth and commanding him to speak them.
We also find in the Qur'an verses which command Muhammad
(pbuh) to perform a certain action, such as the opening verses
of Al-Muzzamil(73), or which even go so far as to reproach Muhammad
(pbuh), such as the chapter of Al-Tahreem(66) or the chapter of
Christians claim that the Bible has many "authors,"
and that while the "inspiration" is from God, still,
the words are those of mortal men.
Dr. W Graham Scroggie of the Moody Bible institute,
Chicago, says on page 17 of his book "It is human, yet divine":
"...Yes, the Bible is human, although some
out of zeal which is not according to knowledge, have denied this.
Those books have passed through the minds of men, are written
in the language of men, were penned by the hands of men and bear
in their style the characteristics of men...."
Kenneth Cragg, the Anglican Bishop of Jerusalem,
says on page 277 of his book, "The call of the minaret":
".....Not so the New testament....... There
is condensation and editing; there is choice reproduction and
witness. The Gospels have come through the mind of the church
behind the authors. They represent experience and history....."
(Both quotes have been obtained from the books of
The Qur'an, however, is the book of God in both word
and meaning. An example of this is a teacher who sends two students
to teach what they have learned from him. The first is told to
"teach them what I taught you." While the second is
given a textbook written by this teacher and told to read verbatim
from this book and say nothing of his own accord. The first will
convey the thoughts of the teacher. The second will convey both
his thoughts and his words.
Sir William Muir says:
"There is probably in the world no other book which has remained twelve centuries (at the time of this quote) with so pure a text"
Life of Muhammad from original
sources, Sir William Muir, Edinburough, J. Grant, p. xxii-xxiii
This matter becomes clearer when studying for example
the personal greetings and salutations of Paul and his friends
at the ends of Titus (3:15), 2 Timothy (4:19), 1 Thessalonians
(5:26) ..... etc. These words are not the word of God but the
personal greetings of Paul and his friends. There are many such
examples to be found in the Bible. The Qur'an contains no such
verses from Muhammad (pbuh). The words of Muhammad (pbuh) are
collected in a completely separate reference from the Qur'an called
"The Sunnah" (or the "Hadeeth"). We notice
from all this that even the Church itself does not claim that
the Bible is the actual word of God, but His "inspiration"
(his teachings) through the words of men. The Qur'an, however,
is the actual word of God.
"And (remember) when Abraham and Ishmael were raising the foundations of the House (the Ka'aba in Makkah), [praying]: Our Lord! Accept from us [this service]. Verily! You, [only You,] are the Hearer, the Knower. Our Lord! And make us submissive unto You and of our offspring a nation submissive unto You, and show us our ways of worship, and relent toward us. Verily! You, [only You,] are the Relenting, the Merciful. Our Lord! And send among them a messenger from among them who shall recite unto them Your verses, and shall instruct them in the Book and in wisdom and shall purify them. Verily! You, [only You,] are the Mighty, the Wise. And who desires other than the path of Abraham except he who befools himself? Truly, We chose him in this world, and Verily! In the Hereafter he shall be among the righteous. When his Lord said unto him: Surrender! (literally: 'Be a Muslim!') he said: I have surrendered (Literally: 'I have become a Muslim') to the Lord of creation."
The noble Qur'an, Al-Baqarah(2):127-131
e) Grave Warnings for all who do not follow him:
So what shall we say to those who say: "Jesus
has redeemed us. We have no need to follow any future prophets."?
After the above verse of Deuteronomy, God himself threatens severe
retribution against all those who do not follow this awaited prophet.
In Deuteronomy we read:
"And it shall come to pass, [that] whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require [it] of him." (in some translations: "I will be the Revenger")
Well, do Muslims read the word of God (The Qur'an)
in His name? The answer is: Yes. Muhammad (pbuh) never in his
lifetime claimed that the Qur'an was his words, but the words
of God it is only the West which claims that it is his words.
Further, when a Muslim reads a verse or chapter of the Qur'an,
you will find that they have been taught to always start their
recitation with the words: "In the name of God, Most Gracious,
Most Merciful." The Qur'an contains 114 Chapters. If
we were to follow them on down we would find that the first chapter,
second chapter, third chapter, and so on all begin with the words
"In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful."
(there is one exception). So not only Muhammad (pbuh), but all
Muslims in general recite the words of God in His name. Indeed,
the Qur'an does even confirm this same warning of Deuteronomy:
"And whosoever seeks other than Islam as their religion it will not be accepted from him, and he shall be in the hereafter among those who have lost"
The noble Qur'an, A'al Umran(3):85