Saturday, October 10, 2015

Am I Muslim? - Part 2

This is the second part of a multi-part post. If you haven't yet, you may want to first read Part 1.
I believe in the resurrection of the dead, both of the righteous and the unrighteous. Paul tells us that "there shall certainly be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked." (Acts 24:15) Of this, the Koran agrees. "Every one of them shall come to Him upon the Day of Resurrection, all alone. Surely those who believe and do deeds of righteousness -- unto them the All-merciful shall assign
love." (Koran 19:95-96) However, in Muhammad's day there were many who doubted the resurrection. To them, death was the end. They could not conceive of life after death. Muhammad rebukes them saying, "They say, 'There is nothing but our present life; we die, and we live, and nothing but Time destroys us.' Of that they have no knowledge; they merely conjecture [it is merely their own conceit]... Say: 'God gives you life, then makes you die, then He shall gather [assemble] you to [on] the Day of Resurrection, wherein is no doubt, but most men do not know.'" (Koran 45:23, 26) The unbelief in Muhammad's time should not surprise us for, even in Jesus' day, there were those who doubted. "Now there came to Him some of the Sadducees (who say that there is no resurrection." (Luke 20:27) However, Jesus showed us the truth of the resurrection when He Himself raised from the dead. His resurrection give us hope for our own resurrection. "Now if we have died with Christ, we believe that we shall also live with Him, knowing that Christ, having been raised from the dead, is never to die again; death no longer is master over Him." (Romans 6:8-9)

I believe in eternal reward and eternal judgment. In the resurrection, some will be resurrected to eternal life with God and others to eternal damnation away from His presence. Jesus describes the judgment at the end of the age and concludes with a remark regarding the wicked."These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life." (Matthew 25:46) The Koran similarly describes the paradise that awaits the righteous at the end of the age. "This is the similitude [picture] of Paradise which the godfearing have been promised: therein are rivers of water unstaling [which corrupt not], rivers of milk unchanging in flavour, and rivers of wine -- a delight to the drinkers, rivers, too, of honey purified [clarified]; and therein for them is every fruit, and forgiveness from their Lord." (Koran 47:16-17) It is interesting that the Koran depicts paradise as having waters running underneath it. This is a picture of a desert oasis which those of his day could easily relate to. Similarly, the Koran describes hell, the reward of the wicked. "Surely We have prepared for the evildoers [offenders] a fire, whose pavilion [smoke] encompasses [enwrap] them; if they call for succor [implore help], they will be succoured [helped] with water like molten copper [brass], that shall scald their faces -- how evil [wretched] a potion [drink], and how evil [unhappy] a resting-place [couch]!" (Koran 18:28)

More to come...
David Robison

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