Is Mohammad in the Bible?
Did Jesus promise Mohammd would follow? No Jesus did not say this. Christians need to share the truth of the Gospel with Muslims. Many Christians are surprised when Muslims say Mohammad is in the Bible; thus, what Mohammad taught about Jesus must be true. Christians need to be aware of some of the texts Muslims cite in support of the claim that Mohammad is prophesied in the Bible. Muslims claim “the prophet” of Deuteronomy 18 is Mohammad. The idea that Jesus promised Mohammad is a near universal teaching in Islam.
When Jesus gave his farewell discourse in the Gospel of John (chapters 14 and 16), Jesus spoke about the coming of the “Spirit of Truth”, the “Paraclete” or “Advocate” (in Greek, “parakletos”). For many centuries, Muslim interpreters have consistently seen Mohammad as this final prophet of the “Spirit of Truth,” promised by Jesus in the Gospel of John, and based on two passages (7:157 and 61:6) from the Koran.
Those who follow the Messenger, the unlettered prophet, whom they find written in what they have of the Torah and the Gospel, who enjoins upon them what is right and forbids them what is wrong and makes lawful for them the good things and prohibits for them the evil and relieves them of their burden and the shackles which were upon them. So they who have believed in him, honored him, supported him and followed the light which was sent down with him.
Jesus, the son of Mary, said “O Children of Israel! Truly I am the Messenger of God unto you, confirming that which came before me in the Torah and bearing glad tidings of a Messenger to come after me whose name is Ahmad.”
Koran 7:157 claims that references to Mohammad (“the Messenger, the unlettered prophet”) will be found in both the Old Testament and New Testament.
Koran 61:6 claims Jesus (seen as only a “messenger” in Islam) will be followed by a future, and final, prophet named “Ahmad.” Ahmad is another name for Mohammad.
Ahmad, (Greek “parakleton”) which is another name for Mohammad, is very close etymologically to the New Testament Greek word, “parakletos”, so Muslims claim the Koran validates that Jesus in the Gospel of John predicts Mohammad. Since Jesus refers to the Spirit of Truth as “he” and “him”, Muslims see this as a man. Muslims consistently say Jesus promised Mohammad would follow him, and cite John 16:13 (“The Spirit of Truth”) as proof. The Koran says Mohammad is the final prophet. Islam believes there will never be another.
Who Is the “Prophet” of Deuteronomy 18?
In Deuteronomy 18:15-19, Moses told the Jews that God would raise up another prophet like Moses. Muslims claim that Mohammad is the fulfillment of this future prophet promise, whereas Christians contend that the Messiah, Jesus, is the fulfillment. Moses was the leader in the greatest event of Old Testament history, the redemption of the Israelites from slavery in Egypt. This was the hallmark that Israel was to celebrate yearly in the Passover.
The Old Testament references the Exodus throughout, more than any other event as cause for celebration of God’s majesty. This redemption from Egypt was only a foreshadowing of the ultimate redemption that Jesus accomplished by redeeming us from the bondage of sin through his death on the cross.
Jesus is like Moses, but He is superior since Jesus is the Son of God.
Deuteronomy 18: 15-19 (NIV)
The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him. For this is what you asked of the Lord your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly when you said, “Let us not hear the voice of the Lord our God nor see this great fire anymore, or we will die.”
The Lord said to me: “What they say is good. I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their fellow Israelites, and I will put my words in his mouth. He will tell them everything I command him. I myself will call to account anyone who does not listen to my words that the prophet speaks in my name.”
Deuteronomy 18:15 NIV says “from among you, from your fellow Israelites”, while the King James translation says “from the midst of thee, of thy brethren.” Muslims claim reason that that Mohammad is the “prophet” spoken of here and argue that the expression “from the midst of thee, of thy brethren” refers to the Ishmaelites who were half-brothers of the Israelites by virtue of the fact that they were both descended from Abraham via Ishmael. The reason Muslims point this out is because Ishmael was also a son of Abraham and thus a half-brother of Isaac, the forefather of the Jewish nation.
Ishmael, it is argued is the father of the Arab nation, and since Mohammad was an Arab, he would be a descendant of Ishmael, and thus a son of Abraham, and hence relationally be a Semitic “brother” to the Jews. However, following the line of Muslim thinking, if the Ishmaelites or descendants of Ishmael are “brothers” of the Israelites, why could not the Edomites also be their “brothers” spoken of here? The Edomites were descended from Esau (Gen 36:9), who was the brother of Jacob from the same father Isaac making Esau a full brother.
Israelite Is the Meaning of “from the midst of thee, of thy brethren” From the context of this Deuteronomy passage and that which precedes it, the term “thy brethren” is a reference to the Israelites exclusively and no one else. Deuteronomy 17:14-15 gives prophecy about the emergence of the monarchy within Israel and the identity of the rightful monarch who would rule over the people, this point is further made crystal clear: When you enter the land the Lord your God is giving you and have taken possession of it and settled in it, and you say, “Let us set a king over us like all the nations around us,” be sure to appoint over you a king the Lord your God chooses. He must be from among your fellow Israelites. Do not place a foreigner over you, one who is not an Israelite.
One need only read the lists of the kings who ruled over the Israelites in the books of 1 and 2 Samuel, 1 and 2 Kings, and 1 and 2 Chronicles to verify the fact that they were all without exception, Israelites. Throughout the Old Testament, one finds the expression “their brothers” or “thy brethren” consistently referring to the tribes of Israel (Judges 20:13; 2 Samuel 2:26; 2 Kings 23:9; Nehemiah 5:1).
Mohammad was not an Israelite. Mohammad would not quality to be part of “from the midst of thee, of thy brethren.” Mohammad was from the line of Ishmael, who was banished and sent away by Sarah (Genesis 21:8-21). Genesis tells us Ishmael was an archer, and therefore in Revelation the first rider on the white horse carries a bow, was Mohammad-a descendant of Ishmael. (Revelation 6:1-2)
Jesus Is this “Prophet like Moses”
Both Jews and Christians have consistently recognized this Deuteronomy passage as referring to a prophet who would arise out of the people of Israel and not from any another ethnic group. The New Testament reveals that this prophet is Jesus of Nazareth, the Messiah. Jesus meets the qualifications outlined in Deuteronomy 18:15-19: Jesus came from the nation of Israel, he was of the tribe of Judah, and therefore as a Jew or Israelite, he was one of “their brethren” (see John 4:9, 20-22; Romans 9:4-5; Hebrews 7:14).
- Jesus himself claimed to be the One whom Moses prophesied. Jesus said, “If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me.”(John 5:46)
- In Acts 3:17-23, Peter makes clear this Moses prophecy is about Jesus
- In Acts 7:37-38 and 7:51-52, Stephen makes clear Moses was speaking about Jesus
When did Moses write about Jesus? While the Messiah is found throughout the Old Testament writings of Moses, the specific places where Moses would have written about the Messiah would have been Genesis 3:15 (the prophecy of the seed of the woman crushing the head of the seed of the serpent) and Deuteronomy 18:15-19.
The early disciples of Jesus were also aware of Moses writing about the Messiah. They believed Jesus to be “him of whom Moses in the Law and also the prophets wrote.” (John 1:45) Even Stephen, the first Christian martyr, when he stood before the Sanhedrin, also quoted Deuteronomy 18:18 as fulfilled in Jesus the Messiah, because Moses was one who also predicted “the coming of the Righteous One” (Acts 7:52) and Stephen also said “This is the Moses who told the Israelites, ‘God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your own people.’ He was in the assembly in the wilderness, with the angel who spoke to him on Mount Sinai, and with our ancestors; and he received living words to pass on to us.” (Acts 7:37-38)
Peter makes clear in Acts 3 this prophet was Jesus. He even quotes the same passage from Deuteronomy.
Acts 3: 17-23 (NIV)
“Now, fellow Israelites, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did your leaders. But this is how God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, saying that his Messiah would suffer. Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Messiah, who has been appointed for you—even Jesus.
Heaven must receive him until the time comes for God to restore everything, as he promised long ago through his holy prophets. For Moses said, ‘The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among your own people; you must listen to everything he tells you. Anyone who does not listen to him will be completely cut off from their people.’”
Jesus Promised the Holy Spirit from God
In the Gospel of John (chapters 14 and 16), Jesus speaks about the coming of the “Spirit of Truth”, ‘Paraclete” or “Advocate” (in Greek, “parakletos”). The Holy Spirit is God’s power in action, his active force. (Micah 3:8; Luke 1:35) God sends out his spirit by projecting his energy to any place to accomplish his will. (Psalm 104:30; 139:7) The Holy Spirit is part of one God—the triune nature of God.
We can know that the Holy Spirit is indeed a divine person because He possesses a mind, emotions, and a will. The Holy Spirit thinks and knows (1Corinthians 2:10). The Holy Spirit can be grieved (Ephesians 4:30). The Spirit intercedes for us (Romans 8:26-27). He makes decisions according to His will (1 Corinthians 12:7-11). The Holy Spirit is God, the third Person of the Trinity. As God, the Holy Spirit can truly function as the Comforter and Counselor that Jesus promised He would be (John 14:16, 26, 15:26).
John 16:12-15 (NIV)
“I have much more to say to you, more than you can now bear. But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will glorify me because it is from me that he will receive what he will make known to you. All that belongs to the Father is mine. That is why I said the Spirit will receive from me what he will make known to you.”
It is ironic that the Gospel of John chapters 14 and 16 are cited favorably in support of Mohammad’s place in the Bible because John’s Gospel typically receives harsh attacks from Muslim scholars due to its emphasis on the deity of Jesus and his identity as the Son of God. Muslims view the Bible divergently. Where they feel the Gospel of John can be used to support the Koran, it is right, where it does not, it is wrong. The thought process is very fragmented. Passages are arbitrarily and selectively used by Muslims to prove the Koran.
John 14:15-21 (NIV)
“If you love me, keep my commands. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you. I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you.
Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. On that day you will realize that I am in my Father, and you are in me, and I am in you. Whoever has my commands and keeps them is the one who loves me. The one who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love them and show myself to them.”
Jesus Promised the Spirit of Truth Would Arrive in a Few Days to the Disciples
While Muslims say Jesus promised Mohammad in John 16:13 (“The Spirit of Truth”), Jesus makes clear shortly after his resurrection the Holy Spirit would arrive in just a few days to the disciples.
On one occasion, while he was eating with them, he gave them this command: “Do not leave Jerusalem, but wait for the gift my Father promised, which you have heard me speak about. For John baptized with water, but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”
Mohammad was not born until 570, and did not begin to receive his visions until 610. So Mohammad could not in any way fulfill the words of Jesus “but in a few days you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit.”
Jesus Said the Spirit of Truth Would Be in Them Forever—Mohammad Died in 632
Muslim scholars contend that the pronoun “he” used by Jesus in the above verse points to a human being. The fact that Jesus uses the masculine pronouns “he” and “his” in reference to the Spirit of Truth, does not mean he is speaking of a human being. God is also spoken of in the Bible in the masculine gender (and in the Koran, Allah is referred to as “he”), and yet God is Spirit. (John 4:24)
But Jesus said three things that make it impossible for the Spirit of Truth to be Mohammad the human being. First Jesus said: “But you know him, for he lives with you and will be in you.” A human being does not live in another person. Second, the disciples never met or heard of Mohammad. But they had heard of the Holy Spirit. And they would soon see him and know him.
The Tomb of Mohammad in Medina, Saudi Arabia
Thirdly, Jesus said: “he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever—the Spirit of truth.” Now without the slightest doubt, Mohammad could not abide with us forever, and his tomb can be reliably located at Medina in Saudi Arabia, having died in 632 AD.
The Counselor, the Holy Spirit has been with the church since Pentecost. The Holy Spirit has been with the believers forever since Jesus promised the Father would send him.
Jesus Warned the False Prophet Would Try to Be Associated with the Lamb
That Muslims claim “Jesus promised Mohammad” fulfills Bible prophecy. Jesus warns In Revelation 13:11 that the False Prophet will attempt to look like the lamb, be connected to, or be associated with the lamb. Since Mohammad is the False Prophet, putting forth the lie that Jesus promised Mohammad would follow him fulfills the warning given in Revelation 13:11. The False Prophet tries look like he is associated with Jesus, but the words he speaks are from the dragon (Satan).
Revelation 13:11 (NIV)
Then I saw another beast coming up out of the earth. It had two horns like those of a lamb, but it spoke like a dragon.
Revelation says the False Prophet does five things. Mohammad did all five.
1. The False Prophet will attempt to look like, claim to be connected to, or associated in some way to the lamb (Revelation 13:11)
2. The False Prophet deceives the world. (Revelation 13:14)
3. The False Prophet sets up an image of false worship to the false god. (Revelation 13:14-15)
4. The False Prophet creates a mark, or statement of faith, to the false god. (Revelation 13:16-18)
5. Demonic spirits and messages come out of the False Prophet mouth. (Revelation 16:13-14
Much more prophecy has been fulfilled than most people understand. Our job is not to focus too much on fulfilled prophecy–but rather tell as many people about the Gospel–while we still have time.
Spread the Gospel
Keep praying for the Holy Spirit to allow Muslims to learn the truth of Jesus while they still have some time.
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