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Islam and Pluralism (30 Jul 2019 NewAgeIslam.Com)

Decoding the Prevalent Myth That the Qur’an Promotes Hatred of the Jews and Christians

By Ejaz Naqvi

July 19, 2019

 There is a prevalent myth among Non-Muslims that the Qur’an promotes hatred of the Jews and Christians, as well as being anti-Semitic. To be frank, this myth is equally prevalent among the Muslims. Both groups are flat out wrong, as I will explain here.

They often quote the following verse.

O You who have believed! Do not take the Jews and Christians as your friends (Auliya). They are friends of one another. … The Qur’an 5:51

The word translated as ‘friends’ is Auliya. Many Quranic translators have indeed used ‘friends’ for it, which actually does NOT mean friends. I have many friends but they are not my Auliya. The word for ‘friend’ in Arabic is variably used as rafeek, sadeek or khaleel. Additionally, other places where Auliya has been used in the Qur’an is for God or Prophet Muhammad in terms of being protector, guardian, and protecting friend, and used in religious and/or political terms. Nowhere else has Auliaya been translated as friends except in this verse.

Moreover, the verse, quite specifically, asks Muslims not to take Al-Yahood (Jews) and Al-Nasaraa (Christians) as allies. “Al” in Arabic refers to something or someone specific. In other words, the passage is about specific group of Jews and Christians and not about all Jews and all Christians of all times. That is a big generalization, and a misrepresentation of the teachings of the Qur’an.

Similarly, the same ‘Al’ is also used when referring to Arabs. If we were to assume that Al- in 5:51 refers to all Jews and all Christians, we have to then assume the following verse condemns all Arabs-which is of course not the case.

Arabs-Some Are Good, Some Bad

The Arabs of the desert are the worst in unbelief and hypocrisy, and most fitted to be in ignorance of the command which Allah has sent down to His Messenger: But Allah is All-knowing, All-Wise. 9:97

But some of the desert Arabs believe in God and the Last Day, and look on their payments as pious gifts bringing them nearer to God and obtaining the prayers of the Messenger. Surely it shall be means of nearness for them. Soon will God admit them to His Mercy: for God is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. 9:99

Not all of them were alike:

The Qur’an actually praises Jews and Christians in several places.

O’ children of Israel! Remember My favors which I bestowed upon You; that I exalted you above all other nations. 2:47 and 2:122

And there are, certainly, among the People of the Book, those who believe in God, in the revelation to you, and in the revelation to them, bowing in humility to God: They will not sell the Signs of God for a miserable gain! For them is a reward with their Lord, and God is swift in account. 3:199

Not all of them are alike: Of the People of the Book are a portion that stand (for the right): They rehearse [recite] the Signs [revelations] of God all night long, and they prostrate themselves in adoration. They believe in God and the last day, and they enjoin what is right and forbid the wrong and they strive with one another in hastening to good deeds, and those are among the good. And whatever good they do, they shall not be denied it, and God knows those who guard (against evil). (As for) those who disbelieve, surely neither their wealth nor their children shall avail them in the least against God; and these are the inmates of the fire; therein they shall abide. 3:113–116

Among the People of the Book are some who, if entrusted with a hoard of gold, will (readily) pay it back; others, who, if entrusted with a single silver coin, will not repay it unless you remain firm in demanding, because, they say, ‘there is no call on us (to keep faith) with these Gentiles’, and they tell a lie against God, and (well) they know it. Yea, whoever fulfills his promise and guards (against evil)—then surely God loves those who guard (against evil). (As for) those who take a small price for the covenant of God and their own oaths—surely they shall have no portion in the hereafter, and God will not speak to them, nor will He look upon them on the day of resurrection nor will He purify them, and they shall have a painful chastisement. 3:75–77

Breaking Bread Together and Marrying People Of The Book Is Allowed

Not only does the Quran NOT prohibit friendship with Jews and Christians, it actually allows marrying them! Moreover, ‘the food of the People of the Book is also made lawful’ refers to social gatherings and breaking bread together.

Today all good clean things have been made lawful for you; and the food of the People of the Book is also made lawful for you and your food is made lawful for them. Likewise, marriage with chaste free believing women and also chaste women among the People who were given the Book before you is made lawful for you, provided that you give them their dowries and desire chastity, neither committing fornication nor taking them as mistresses. 5:5

And the Qur’an commands Muslims to dialogue with Jews and Christians in the best manners.

Do not argue with the People of the Book except in the best manner—except for those wicked amongst them, and say:

 “We acknowledge what was revealed to us and in what was revealed to you; Our God and your God is the same. To Him we peacefully surrender.” 29:46

Muslims Don’t Have Monopoly on Paradise

Contrary to popular belief, Muslims do not have a monopoly on the hereafter and salvation. In fact, Jews and Christians, much like any other faith, are promised paradise should they believe in One God and act righteously, much like the commands for Muslims. Verses 2:62 and 5:69 are strikingly similar.

Surely those who believe, and those who are Jews, and the Christians, and the Sabians, whoever believes in Allah and the Last day and does good, they shall have their reward from their Lord, and there is no fear for them, nor shall they grieve. The Qur’an 2:62

Praise for the Christians and Followers of Jesus

Then We sent Our messengers in their footsteps and followed them with Jesus, the son of Mary, and gave him the Gospel. We placed in the hearts of those who followed him kindness and mercy. The Qur’an 57:27

“[Mention] when Allah said,

‘O Jesus, indeed I will take you and raise you to Myself and purify you from those who disbelieve and make those who follow you superior to those who disbelieve until the Day of Resurrection. Then to Me is your return, and I will judge between you concerning that in which you used to differ’” The Qur’an 3:55

Torah and Gospels Are Also Super Critical

Muslims and Non Muslims have pointed out to numerous passages that are super-critical of the Jews, and to lesser extent, the Christians.

I don’t disagree with that assertion.

The Qur’an does indeed criticize Jews and Christians. But it does not criticize all Jews and all Christians. And certainly not all Jews and all Christians of all times- as a group. It is also of note that much of the criticism of Jews in the Qur’an is addressed to the Israelites who accompanied Moses out of Egypt, and their frequent grumblings and their transgression. Additionally, it is critical of the ones at the time of Prophet Muhammad who were hypocritical and/or plotting against the young budding Muslim community in Medina, who were put at risk of being extinct before flourishing as an Umma.

One can easily argue that the Torah has used more harsh words than the Qur’an. Here is a small sample.

The Lord told Moses, “Quick! Go down the mountain! Your people whom you brought from the land of Egypt have corrupted themselves.” Exodus 32:7

Then the Lord said, ‘I have seen how stubborn and rebellious these people are. Now leave me alone so my fierce anger can blaze against them, and I will destroy them.’ Exodus 32:9–10

Then the Lord said to Moses and Aaron, “How long must I put up with this wicked community and its complaints about me? Yes, I have heard the complaints the Israelites are making against me. Now tell them this: ‘As surely as I live, declares the Lord, I will do to you the very things I heard you say. You will all drop dead in this wilderness…Numbers 14:26-29

Jesus’ Criticism of Temple Leadership, And Calling Them ‘Snakes and Sons Of Vipers’

The criticism of the Jews is not limited to the Qur’an and the Torah. The Gospels talk about the transgression of the Israelites in much the same way, reminding them of their transgressions, including killing of their prophets. Chapter 23 of Matthews is about Jesus’ severe criticism of the temple leaders at the time.

What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees? Hypocrites! For you build tombs for the prophets your ancestors killed, and you decorate the monuments of the godly people your ancestors destroyed. Then you say, “If we had lived in the days of our ancestors, we would never have joined them in killing the prophets.” But in saying that, you testify against yourselves that you are indeed the descendants of those who murdered the prophets. Go ahead and finish what your ancestor started. Snakes! Sons of vipers! How will you escape the judgment of hell? Matthew 23:29–33

Final Thoughts

To be clear, the Qur’an indeed is often very critical of Jews and Christians. But so are Torah and the Gospels. I have not quoted the critical verses from the Qur’an here since most people are familiar with them and these are frequently quoted by many to show that the Qur’an ‘promotes hatred towards Jews and Christians’.  But if we study the whole Qur’an, we will find that, while it does not sugar coat the bad deeds of anyone, including Muslims, (God Almighty does not need to be politically correct) it often praises Jews and Christians- anyone who meets the criteria of good deeds as set forth by the Almighty.

As Muslims, we cannot generalize, and put all Jews and Christians in the same box ‘because the Qur’an is critical of them’. In fact we should be the last to generalize and stereotype a whole religion and group of people, much the same way we don’t want to be stereotyped. (Remember the golden rule?)

We don’t like it when the passages from the Qur’an are taken out of context. But we should not be doing the same to twist the meaning of the Qur’anic passages to fit into our pre-existing views and biases. We cannot look at a few passages to draw conclusions, and instead need to take a deeper look at the entire corpus before making any conclusions to have a more balanced, more accurate view on a topic.

Source: Patheos.Com

 URL:   http://www.newageislam.com/islam-and-pluralism/ejaz-naqvi/decoding-the-prevalent-myth-that-the-qur’an-promotes-hatred-of-the-jews-and-christians/d/119339



  • Quran is simple, hate every other things and being other than Muslims and its history 
    Quran is also simple to tell how to use hypo racy among who are not Muslim and not part of Muslims history 

    By Aayina - 8/2/2019 3:39:18 PM

  • Hats Off has told many lies about me before and has never had the decency to apologize. Now he comes up with even more lies. Can he give even a single example of my being  "willing to run with the hares as well as he cases with the wolves." If he can't, he should admit that he is a liar.

    Does he want me to agree with him when he calls the Quran a book of hatred against pagans, jews, idol worshipers, polytheists and other religions? If he does, he is more moronic than I thought.

     He reveals his sour grapes attitude when he keeps questioning the legitimacy of my American citizenship. He thinks the only way to be a good American citizen is by kissing Trumps behind! 

    Also, he should present evidence of my willingness to  do anything for greenbacks and lie through my teeth to support jew hatred, hindu hatred and kuffar hatred. I have never seen anyone lie so unashamedly.

    His hatred for CAIR and Omar and Tlaib has no  basis in facts but he continues to spew it because he has no valid arguments to make. As I have said before, he is a habitual liar and a disgraceful hate merchant.

    By Ghulam Mohiyuddin - 8/1/2019 11:10:33 PM

  • mr ghulam mohuyiddin has absolutely no honesty, no integrity, no loyalties, no conscience and absolutely no shame.

    he is the one who is as willing to run with the hares as well as he cases with the wolves.

    his shameless deceit and lies regarding the hatred of a "holy" book against pagans, jews, idol worshipers, polytheists and other religions is even worse that the hatred immortalized in the pages of a holy book.

    he is willing to sabotage the western society into which he crawled on his knees, lied during his oath of citizenship and he stands with goons and hoodlums of CAIR whose declared aim is to sabotage the "miserable" western society and casts his lot with treacherous slime such as omar and tlaib.

    he will do anything for greenbacks and lie through his teeth to support jew hatred, hindu hatred and kuffar hatred.

    By hats off! - 8/1/2019 5:11:20 PM

  • Hats Off's ugly hate war against Islam continues to adorn the pages of this supposedly progressive Muslim website. It is sad that we have to put up with this.

    By Ghulam Mohiyuddin - 8/1/2019 12:07:59 AM

  • Hats off says, "islam is basically hatred of those who do not convert to islam. the entire book drips with hatred of jews, atheists, pagans, idol worshippers and polytheists. no self respectin jew, christian, pagan or idol worshipper can ever accept that islam is tolerant."
    Do not speak about Duniya. But Islam will be Intolerant towards pagans in the Herafter. This cannot be rejected except by" peacemakers" 

    By Ravi - 7/31/2019 10:24:00 PM

  • Hadith refers Christians and Jews to be people of Scriptures. The following is the extract: And Ibn 'Abbas narrated: Abu Sufyan bin Harb told me that Heraclius called for his translator and then asked for the letter of the Prophet (ﷺ), and the former read it (thus): "In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Merciful. (This letter is) from Muhammad bin 'Abdullah, to Heraclius. "...O people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians): Come to a word that is just between us and you that we worship none but Allah..." (V.3:64) وَقَالَ ابْنُ عَبَّاسٍ أَخْبَرَنِي أَبُو سُفْيَانَ بْنُ حَرْبٍ، أَنَّ هِرَقْلَ، دَعَا تَرْجُمَانَهُ، ثُمَّ دَعَا بِكِتَابِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم فَقَرَأَهُ ‏"‏ بِسْمِ اللَّهِ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيمِ مِنْ مُحَمَّدٍ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ إِلَى هِرَقْلَ، وَ‏{‏يَا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ تَعَالَوْا إِلَى كَلِمَةٍ سَوَاءٍ بَيْنَنَا وَبَيْنَكُمْ ‏}‏‏"‏ الآيَةَ‏.‏ The extract above is from Sahih al-Bukhari 7541, book 97, hadith 166, vol 1, book 93, hadith 631. If hadith were very against Jews and Christians, why should the phrase, people of the Scripture..Jews and Christians, be mentioned in this hadith verse. From all the extracts above, it is obvious that there is no reason why Muslims should promote hatred against Christians and Jews and treat them as if they are evil and not the people of the Scriptures.
    By zuma - 7/31/2019 5:53:45 PM

  • Hadith calls Muslims to be the friends of Christians. The following is the extract: Yahya related to me from Malik from Thawr ibn Zayd ad-Dili that Abdullah ibn Abbas was asked about animals slaughtered by the Christian Arabs. He said, "There is no harm in them," but he recited this ayat, "Whoever takes them as friends is from them." (Sura 5 ayat 54). وَحَدَّثَنِي عَنْ مَالِكٍ، عَنْ ثَوْرِ بْنِ زَيْدٍ الدِّيلِيِّ، عَنْ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ بْنِ عَبَّاسٍ، أَنَّهُ سُئِلَ عَنْ ذَبَائِحِ، نَصَارَى الْعَرَبِ فَقَالَ لاَ بَأْسَ بِهَا وَتَلاَ هَذِهِ الآيَةَ ‏{‏وَمَنْ يَتَوَلَّهُمْ مِنْكُمْ فَإِنَّهُ مِنْهُمْ ‏}‏‏.‏ The extract above is from book 24, hadith 5, book 24, hadith 1049. If Hadith is very against Christians and to curse them to hell, why should the phrase, Christian Arabs..There is no harm in them..Whoever takes them as friends is from them, be mentioned in this hadith verse? Instead, hadith verse should condemn Muslims to make friends with Christians if Muslims in the past hated Christians the most.
    By zuma - 7/31/2019 5:40:29 PM

  • islam is basically hatred of those who do not convert to islam. the entire book drips with hatred of jews, atheists, pagans, idol worshippers and polytheists. no self respectin jew, christian, pagan or idol worshipper can ever accept that islam is tolerant.

    there are unambiguous verses that exhort believers to shun these non belivers, kill them wherever they are found and to confiscate their property for mal e ghanimat and their women as left hand posessions.

    sugarcoating does not help. it just proves the point.

    this universal hatred was in part responsible for the fierceness with which entire cotinents were turned into islam.

    By hats off! - 7/31/2019 5:36:41 PM

  • Hadith never condemns Christians. The following is the extracted hadith verse: Narrated `Umar: I heard the Prophet (ﷺ) saying, "Do not exaggerate in praising me as the Christians praised the son of Mary, for I am only a Slave. So, call me the Slave of Allah and His Apostle." حَدَّثَنَا الْحُمَيْدِيُّ، حَدَّثَنَا سُفْيَانُ، قَالَ سَمِعْتُ الزُّهْرِيَّ، يَقُولُ أَخْبَرَنِي عُبَيْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ عَبْدِ اللَّهِ، عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ، سَمِعَ عُمَرَ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ يَقُولُ عَلَى الْمِنْبَرِ سَمِعْتُ النَّبِيَّ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَقُولُ ‏ "‏ لاَ تُطْرُونِي كَمَا أَطْرَتِ النَّصَارَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ، فَإِنَّمَا أَنَا عَبْدُهُ، فَقُولُوا عَبْدُ اللَّهِ وَرَسُولُهُ ‏"‏‏.‏ The above is the extract from Sahih al-Bukhari 3445, book 60, hadith 115, vol 4, book 55, hadith 654. If Prophet was very against Christians, he would be angry with those people to place or to comment him with second class people. Yet he mentioned in this hadith verse that 'Do not exaggerate in praising me as the Christians praised the son of Mary. As the Prophet did not condemn those people who prasing him as Christians praised the son of Mary, it implies the prophet was never against Christians.
    By zuma - 7/31/2019 5:27:51 PM

  • Hadith mentions vividly that Allah will save Muslims, Jews and Christians.  The following is the extract:

    Abu Musa' reported that Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) said:

    When it will be the Day of Resurrection Allah would deliver to every Muslim a Jew or a Christian and say: That is your rescue from Hell-Fire.
    دَّثَنَا أَبُو بَكْرِ بْنُ أَبِي شَيْبَةَ، حَدَّثَنَا أَبُو أُسَامَةَ، عَنْ طَلْحَةَ بْنِ يَحْيَى، عَنْ أَبِي، بُرْدَةَ عَنْ أَبِي مُوسَى، قَالَ قَالَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم ‏ "‏ إِذَا كَانَ يَوْمُ الْقِيَامَةِ دَفَعَ اللَّهُ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ إِلَى كُلِّ مُسْلِمٍ يَهُودِيًّا أَوْ نَصْرَانِيًّا فَيَقُولُ هَذَا فَكَاكُكَ مِنَ النَّارِ ‏"‏ ‏.‏
    The above extract is from Sahih Muslim 2767 a, book 50, hadith 57, book 37, hadith 6665.  If Allah will condemn Jews and Christians to hell, why should the phrase, the Day of Resurrection Allah would deliver to every Muslim or Jew or a Christian and say..That is your rescue from Hell-Fire, be mentioned in this hadith?  If Allah is very against Christians and Jews, he should leave them in hell instead of rescuing them from Hell-Fire.  The phrase, Allah..deliver every Muslim a Jew or a Christian..rescue from Hell-Fire, in this hadith verse obviously gives the clue that he will save them and that includes Muslims also.  As Allah will save even Jews and Christians, why do you so particularly about them even though they believe in Allah too?

    By zuma - 7/31/2019 5:19:23 PM

  • I am also against another distorted truth that you mentioned Christians and Jews fought against Muslims due to they distorted the verses of Torah.  None of the Quran and hadith mention they fought against Muslims due to they distorted the verses of Torah.  If you can find one verse from these two, please enlighten us and quote them to us for your supporting twisted truth.  
    Al-Ma'idah (The Table Spread) - 5:82 
    لَتَجِدَنَّ أَشَدَّ النَّاسِ عَدَاوَةً لِّلَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ الْيَهُودَ وَالَّذِينَ أَشْرَكُواْ وَلَتَجِدَنَّ أَقْرَبَهُمْ مَّوَدَّةً لِّلَّذِينَ آمَنُواْ الَّذِينَ قَالُوَاْ إِنَّا نَصَارَى ذَلِكَ بِأَنَّ مِنْهُمْ قِسِّيسِينَ وَرُهْبَانًا وَأَنَّهُمْ لاَ يَسْتَكْبِرُونَ (5:82)

    Basit -   Hussari -   Minshawi -  f

    Latajidanna ashadda alnnasi AAadawatan lillatheena amanoo alyahooda waallatheena ashrakoo walatajidanna aqrabahum mawaddatan lillatheena amanoo allatheena qaloo inna nasara thalika bianna minhum qisseeseena waruhbanan waannahum layastakbiroona

    Topics discussed in this Verse: 
    [Compassion and Mercy in their hearts:love for the Believers] [Jews:enmity of] [Kabah] [Monasticism of Christians] [Pagans and polytheists:enmity to Believers] [People of the Book:relationship to Muslims]

    5:82 (Asad) Thou wilt surely find that, of all people, the most hostile to those who believe [in this divine writ] are the Jews as well as those who are bent on ascribing divinity to aught beside God; and thou wilt surely find that, of all people, [96] they who say, "Behold, we are Christians," come closest to feeling affection for those who believe [in this divine writ]: this is so because there are priests and monks among them, and because these are not given to arrogance.  -  

    The above is the extract from Quran 5:82.  
    If the Jews and Christians were those so bad that they distorted the teaching of Torah and fought against Muslims, Quran should condemn them for their act and there is no reason why the phrase, the Jews as well as those ..who say.. 'We are Christians'..these are not given to arrogance, to be mentioned in Quran 5:82.  The reason is Quran 5:82 should condemn them to be arrogant that they fought against Muslims due to their evil act in distorting the teaching of Torah, if they were so bad that they fought them because of their these evil acts.  As Quran did not condemn them since the phrase, these are not given to arrogance, in this verse implies Quran is not against them, there is no reason to assume they were those who fought against Muslims.  Instead, those who fought against Muslims were those who worshipped idols and yet their idols were destroyed by some Muslim extremists and that frustrated them to have the hatred against them and to begin their intolerant battle against Muslims.

    By zuma - 7/31/2019 5:04:48 PM

  • Zuma sb,
    Please read my comment properly then respond. 
    I am here to hear you. 
    Who said, "all the Christans and Jews are misguided?" 
    I just translated the meaning of waladdallin which is a general command used for all those who are misguided. 
    They could be from among the so-called Muslims, non-Muslims or so-called Mushrikin. 
    But is it your understanding ability that you applied it to
    those Christians and Jews who had believed?

    By GGS - 7/31/2019 10:59:43 AM

  • Please reply the following questions:
    Any Muslim who disbelives the Last Prophet is believer or disbeliever?
    What do you think of those believing in Trinity?
     What do you think about the Christians and Jews who disbelieve the Last Prophet (peace be upon him)? 
    Why did some Jews develop حسد against the Last Prophet and why is it that the same Hasad is seen in writings of those who support those Hasidin Jews living in times of the Last Prophet (peace be upon him)?

    By GGS - 7/31/2019 10:47:30 AM

  • Extremely Selective nature! 
    To go in depth, translations will never help you. 
    Tafsirs or Translations are not the words of God but they are the understanding of mufassir or translators.

    By GGS - 7/31/2019 10:35:59 AM

  • Zuma sb, do you think theses verses mentioned in your comment are not known to Saudis?
    By GGS - 7/31/2019 10:24:54 AM

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