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Christian Apologetics toward Islam and Missions to Muslims

Islam’s Troubled Historic Record – Part 2


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Today Israel is going to the voting booths. This is probably the most important election of our day. This election may possibly determine whether or not there will be peace in the Middle East, and maybe the world.

It is my opinion the Benjamin Netanyahu is the a true statesman and the man they need in these troubled times. In some ways I wish we had a leader like him in our nation.

We will be watching what happens in the election and reporting to you, but today I want to continue with our look at the troubled history of Islam. There is a big gap in the record in Islam’s presentation of Islam’s history. Muslims recorded nothing about their history until 150 to 200 years after the death of Muhammad. This seems to indicate that much of what Islam presents is a fabrication. Non-Muslim sources record a much different picture of the history of early Islam.

The Arabic language, in written form, was just being developed at that time. This makes it easy to determine the approximate time of writing of Arabic documents.

Muhammad is referred to as the “unlettered prophet” because he could neither read nor write. This was not at all unusual because most Arab people of that day could not red or write. History was passed on by oral tradition.

At the time of Muhammad the Arabic language, as an oral language, had existed for more than 1,000 years. It was like Hebrew and Syriac which were written in consonants without and vowel markings until the 6th century when scholars started putting in vowel markings so that could be pronounced better. Before this time Arabic did not have a written format. If they needed something written down they used the Syriac letters or Aramaic letters.

It seems that the letters that came to be known as Arabic were not developed until after the time of Muhammad. Arabic did not develop its written form until some 60 to 70 years after the death of Muhammad. The earliest Qur’anic type manuscripts date to the early 700’s, which is the 8th century.

I was surprised on my recent visit to Israel to find that the inscriptions on the Dome of the Rock had the vowel markings. Realizing that this must have been written later I contacted Dr. Janosik. He told me that it is what is written inside that is of earlier origin.

The point of all of this is that you can tell when certain passages of the Qur’an were written by the script in which they are written. You can tell that what is written on the inside of the Dome of the Rock was written much earlier than what is written on the outside. What is on the inside is late 7th or early 8th century and what is on the outside is mid 15th century.

They claim that the Qur’an was written 20 years after the death of Muhammad. One of the Hadith gives instructions for the writing down of the Qur’an. Here are the instructions:

In case you disagree with Zayd ibn Thabit on any point in the Qur’an then write it in the dialect of the Quraysh, the Qur’an was revealed in their tongue.”

The Quraysh were the tribe of Mecca and Muhammad. It is interesting that they are debating what was really in the Qur’an. They are confessing that there may be disagreement on what it really should say.

The caliph sent one copy of what had been copied and ordered that all of the other Qur’anic manuscripts be burned. Muslims tell us that they still have these original copies of the Qur’an.

Two manuscripts are housed in two different museums that are considered to be of those written 20 years after the death of Muhammad. They are both dated to the 8th century, more than 150 years after they are claimed to have been written. Neither of them is complete, and they present a completely different picture from those dating to the late 7th century.

There are two things that tell us that they were actually written 150 and 170 years after the claimed date of their writing. One is the script in which they were written. The second would be the carbon dating of the manuscript itself and the type of materials that were used.

Muslims claim that our Bible has been corrupted yet they have offered us no manuscript proof of this. The only proof they give are the slight variants in different manuscripts.

The oldest Qur’anic manuscripts do not have all of the vowel markings, which were not developed until the 8th century. These manuscripts show the efforts to come up with a standard manuscript from all of the divergent manuscripts. Some of these manuscripts have whole passages taken out or replaced, the overwriting of some passages, and a number of other corrections and changes. This indicates that the Qur’an was not finalized in the early 700’s. In fact it was still not finalized at the end of the 8th century.

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Updated: March 17, 2015 — 8:18 AM
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