At a county fair the other day, one of the exhibition booths contained materials promoting Islam. The Muslims there (some of whom looked arabic!) were friendly, and gave me some islamic literature, including a paperback Koran in an English-language translation by Abdullah Yusuf Ali, published by Goodword Books of www.goodword.net and first printed in 2003 in New Delhi India 110 013, plus literature with the following e-mail addresses:
Now, as a professed and professing Christian, I admittedly look at the world through Christian-colored glasses, and analyze everything I come across with a Christianity-committed mindset.
I had heard about the Koran (or Qur'an as it is known in arabic), and gotten the impression from others that it is a satanic-verses collection of the anti-Christian and antisemitic false-sect cult of islam, which some have used as their incentive for committing terroristic activism and atrocities.
Quickly leafing through the English-language Koran identified above (which, I was told, was only a rough translation from the? arabic-lettered Qur'an), the best I can now say about it, at first glance, is that it is a massively-complicated work of awkwardly-structured but somewhat quaint and cute axioms and euphemisms, but also a bizarre grouping of nearly-incoherant ramblings, almost like from an author either mentally goofy or drunk.
Upon further and more intensive reading, much of the writings were a confusing mixmash of what appeared to be plagiaristic revisionism and commentary on what the Judeo-Christian (JC) Holy Bible already stated (which JC Holy Bible clearly has much better topic titles plus chapter-and-verse numbering system).
Added to that, there were myriad suppositions of whatever-sourced questionable history or pseudo-history, along with numerous debatable postulations -- some of which were sort of in agreement with but others directly in conflict and opposed to vital and crucial JC Holy-Bible doctrines, teachings, and history.
The more noticeable ones which the Koran, in so many flowery semantics, declared were:
(1) "God's" (i.e. the Creator's) only name is: 'Allah' and ONLY "Allah" - always......and nothing else....ever (which, and not who - being without gender), allegedly is always 'most merciful and gracious' -- yet will judge certain ones to 'Hell' someday).
(2) Although 'chaste' Mary miraculously conceived and birthed a son, that son was not Divine nor a nor the Son of God, but merely [another] 'messenger' and [simply a noteworthy] 'prophet.'
(3) 'Ishmael' is included in the lineup of [special] prophets as sources of [Divine] revelation and inheritance, right along with Hebrew/Jewish ancestors and lineage (which Hebrew/Jewish ancestors are not respected for any God-chosen race but only by their family names as related to 'Ishmael,' before and after).
(4) 'Jesus' was never crucified, but [through trickery] only 'appeared to have died,' so 'Jesus' was never actually resurrected from the dead.
(5) The source of info for the torah (i.e. first five books of Moses of the Old Testament) and most other tenants of Judaism and Christianity is said to have come from the Koran, considered by islamics as 'holy,' and Mohammed (considered by islamic as 'The Prophet,' who supposedly 'corrected the errors' of the JC Holy Bible, with presumably [inerrant] 'Text' from "Allah" itself, which "Allah" has no gender).
(6) A muslim believer will never burn in 'Hell,' no matter what, as long as they stay muslim.
(7) Non-fair and one-sided slander and denouncement against 'Jews' is frequent.
My general impression of the Koran is that it is a haphazardly-assembled, randomly-compiled, complexly-worded plethoria of non-logically-arranged flowery-description essays with a helter-skelter plethoria of subject titles not only naming persons, places, job types, and human actions like the JC Holy Bible, but also having phenomena-of-nature titles.....all engrained into a mixed-up menagerie of disorganized and scatterbrain musings and meanderings.
It is a conglomeration of weirdly-fabricated rules and regulations, many of which seem to have some (but not identical) direct association and parallels with a lot of what already was and is contained in the JC Holy Bible, but most always the author's peculiar assortment of alterations, additions, and applications.
Tried as I could, as I only superficially scanned through the English Koran, I could not find any substantial details on the basis for the hijab nor burka type of very-modest attire which muslim women wear publicly.....even using the back-of-book index the publishers provided.
The closest I could find was on page 244 under a subdivision entitled "The Light:"
Q24:31 = "And say to the believing women that they should lower their gaze and guard their chastity; they they should not display their beauty and ornaments except what (must ordinarily) appear thereof; that they should draw their veils over their bosoms and not display their beauty except to their husbands.....and that they should not strike their feet in order to draw attention to their hidden ornaments."
Consider the similarity of the Koran quote above to the following similar subject matter in the JC Holy Bible:
Proverbs 7:10 And wow, a woman meets him, [mis-]dressed as a harlot, wily of heart. 11 She is loud and wayward, her [soxlessly-sandal-footed?] feet do not [domestically] stay at home; 12 now in the street, now in the market, and at every corner she lies in wait. 13 She seizes him and kisses him, and with impudent [mopheaded?] face she says to him: 14 "I had to offer sacrifices, and today I have paid my vows; 15 so now I have come out to meet you, to seek you eagerly, and I have found you.
Proverbs 5:15 Drink water from your own cistern, flowing water from your own well. 16 Should your springs be scattered abroad, streams of water in the streets? 17 Let them be for yourself alone, and not for strangers with you. 18 Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth, 19 a lovely deer, a graceful doe. Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight, be infatuated always with her love. 20 Why should you be infatuated, my son, with a loose woman and embrace the bosom of an adventuress? 21 For a man's ways are before the eyes of the LORD, and He watches all his paths. 22 The iniquities of the wicked ensnare him, and he is caught in the toils of his sin. 23 He dies for lack of discipline, and because of his great folly he is lost.
Isaiah 3:16 The LORD said: Because the daughters of Zion are haughty and walk with outstretched necks, glancing wantonly with their eyes, mincing along as they go, tinkling with their feet; 17 the Lord will smite with a scab the heads of the daughters of Zion, and the LORD will lay bare their secret parts. 18 In that day the Lord will take away the finery of the anklets, the headbands, and the crescents; 19 the pendants, the bracelets, and the scarfs; 20 the headdresses, the armlets, the sashes, the perfume boxes, and the amulets; 21 the signet rings and nose rings; 24 Instead of perfume there will be rottenness; and instead of a girdle, a rope; and instead of well-set hair, baldness; and instead of a rich robe, a girding of sackcloth; instead of beauty, shame.
First Timothy 2:8 I desire then that in every place the men should pray, lifting holy hands without anger or quarreling; 9 also that women should adorn themselves modestly and sensibly in decent apparel, not with plaited hair or gold or pearls or costly attire 10 but by good works, as befits women who profess religion.
In the Koran, on page 264 in a subdivision entitled "The Ants," something is seen which vaguely resembles the JC Holy Bible passages of First Kings 10, Isaiah 3:12, Isaiah 47:1-4, and Revelation 15 verse 2:
Q27:41-46 = "He said: "Transform her throne out of all recognition by her. Let us see whether she is guided (to the truth) or is one of those who receive no guidance." So when she arrived, she was asked: "Is this your throne?" She said, "It was just like this." (and Solomon said:) "We were given the knowledge before this and we had surrendered (to Allah)." And (all) that she was wont to worship instead of Allah hindered her, for she came of disbelieving folk. She was asked to enter the lofty Palace; but shen she saw it, she thought it was a lake of water, and she (tucked up her skirts), uncovering her legs. He said: "This is but a palace paved smooth with slabs of glass." She said: "O my Lord! I have indeed wronged my soul: I do (now) submit (in Islam), with Solomon, to the Lord of the Worlds." We sent (aforetime), to the Thamud, their brother Salih, saying, "Serve Allah:" But behold, they became two factions quarrelling with each other. He said: "O my people! Why do you ask to hasten on the evil in preference to the good?
Contrast that with the following in the JC Holy Bible:
First Kings 10:1 Now when the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon concerning the name of the LORD, she came to test him with hard questions. 4 And when the queen of Sheba had seen all the wisdom of Solomon, the house that he had built, 10 Then she gave the king a hundred and twenty talents of gold, and a very great quantity of spices, and precious stones; never again came such an abundance of spices as these which the queen of Sheba gave to King Solomon. 13 And King Solomon gave to the queen of Sheba all that she desired, whatever she asked besides what was given her by the bounty of King Solomon. So she turned and went back to her own land, with her servants.
Isaiah 3:12 My people: children are their oppressors, and women rule over them. O my people, your leaders mislead you, and confuse the course of your paths.
Isaiah 47:1 Come down and sit in the dust, O virgin daughter of Babylon; sit on the ground without a throne, O daughter of the Chaldeans! For you shall no more be called tender and delicate. 2 Take the millstones and grind meal, put off your veil, strip off your robe, uncover your legs, pass through the rivers. 3 Your nakedness shall be uncovered, and your shame shall be seen. I will take vengeance, and I will spare no man. 4 Our Redeemer--the LORD of hosts is his name--is the Holy One of Israel. 5 Sit in silence, and go into darkness, O daughter of the Chaldeans; for you shall no more be called the mistress of kingdoms. 6 I was angry with my people, I profaned My heritage; I gave them into your hand, you showed them no mercy; on the aged you made your yoke exceedingly heavy. 7 You said, "I shall be mistress for ever," so that you did not lay these things to heart or remember their end. 8 Now therefore hear this, you lover of pleasures, who sit securely, who say in your heart, "I am, and there is no one besides me; I shall not sit as a widow or know the loss of children": 9 These two things shall come to you in a moment, in one day; the loss of children and widowhood shall come upon you in full measure, in spite of your many sorceries and the great power of your enchantments. 10 You felt secure in your wickedness, you said, "No one sees me"; your wisdom and your knowledge led you astray, and you said in your heart, "I am, and there is no one besides me." 11 But evil shall come upon you, for which you cannot atone; disaster shall fall upon you, which you will not be able to expiate; and ruin shall come on you suddenly, of which you know nothing. 15 Such to you are those with whom you have labored, who have trafficked with you from your youth; they wander about each in his own direction; there is no one to save you.
Rev 15:2 And I saw what appeared to be a sea of glass mingled with fire, and those who had conquered the beast and its image and the number of its name, standing beside the sea of glass with harps of God in their hands.
Much of the animosity of Mohammed-follower islamic arabs impose against Jewish Israelis, and their moslemic presumption of trying to engrain themselves as equals, yet who disassociate themselves as superior law-obeyers and mercy-obtainers, is related to the JC Holy Bible passages below, as explained by Saint Paul:
Galatians 4:22 For it is written that Abraham had two sons, one by a slave and one by a free woman. 23 But the son of the slave was born according to the flesh, the son of the free woman through promise. 24 Now this is an allegory: these women are two covenants. One is from Mount Sinai, bearing children for slavery; she is Hagar. 25 Now Hagar is Mount Sinai in Arabia; she corresponds to the present Jerusalem, for she is in slavery with her children. 26 But the Jerusalem above is free, and she is our mother. 27 For it is written, "Rejoice, O barren one who does not bear; break forth and shout, you who are not in travail; for the children of the desolate one are many more than the children of her that is married." 28 Now we, brothers [and not necessarily "sisters" also, according to the precise Greek Text], like Isaac, are children of promise. 29 But as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so it is now. 30 But what does the scripture say? "Cast out the slave and her son; for the son of the slave shall not inherit with the son of the free woman." 31 So, brethren, we are not children of the slave but of the free woman.
Let me provide a little backround relating to that:
Genesis 16:1 Now Sarai, Abram's wife, bore him no children. She had an Egyptian maid whose name was Hagar; 2 and Sarai said to Abram, "Hey now, the LORD has prevented me from bearing children; go in to my maid; it may be that I shall obtain children by her." And Abram responded to the voice of Sarai. 3 So, after Abram had resided ten years in the land of Canaan, Sarai, Abram's wife, took Hagar the Egyptian, her maid, and gave her to Abram her husband as a wife. 4 And he went in to Hagar, and she conceived; and when she saw that she had conceived, she looked with contempt on her mistress. 5 And Sarai said to Abram, "May the wrong done to me be on you! I gave my maid to your embrace, and when she saw that she had conceived, she looked on me with contempt. May the LORD judge between you and me!" 6 But Abram said to Sarai, "Hey, your maid is in your power; do to her as you please." Then Sarai dealt harshly with her, and she fled from her. 7 The angel of the LORD found her by a spring of water in the wilderness, the spring on the way to Shur. 8 And he said, "Hagar, maid of Sarai, where have you come from and where are you going?" She said, "I am fleeing from my mistress Sarai." 9 The angel of the LORD said to her, "Return to your mistress, and submit to her." 10 The angel of the LORD also said to her, "I will so greatly multiply your descendants that they cannot be numbered for multitude." 11 And the angel of the LORD said to her, "Hey, you are with child, and shall bear a son; you shall call his name Ishmael; because the LORD has given heed to your affliction. 12 He shall be a wild donkey of a man, his hand against every man and every man's hand against him; and he shall reside over against all his relatives." 13 So she called the name of the LORD who spoke to her, "Are You a God of seeing"; for she said, "Have I really seen God and remained alive after seeing Him?" 14 Therefore the well was called Beerlahairoi; it lies between Kadesh and Bered. 15 And Hagar bore Abram a son; and Abram called the name of his son, whom Hagar bore, Ishmael. 16 Abram was eighty-six years old when Hagar bore Ishmael to Abram.
Genesis 21:9 But Sarah saw the son of Hagar the Egyptian, whom she had borne to Abraham, playing with her son Isaac. 10 So she said to Abraham, "Cast out this slave woman with her son; for the son of this slave woman shall not be heir with my son Isaac." 11 And the thing was very displeasing to Abraham on account of his son. 12 But God said to Abraham, "Be not displeased because of the lad and because of your slave woman; whatever Sarah says to you, do as she tells you, for through Isaac shall your descendants be named. 13 And I will make a nation of the son of the slave woman also, because he is your offspring." 17 And God heard the voice of the lad; and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven, and said to her, "What troubles you, Hagar? Fear not; for God has heard the voice of the lad where he is. 18 Arise, lift up the lad, and hold him fast with your hand; for I will make him a great nation."
Contrast the Koranic view of liquor on page 78 in the subdivision entitled: "The Table Spread":
Q5:90-91 = O you who believe! Intoxicants and gambling, (dedication of) stones, and (divination by) arrows, are an abomination - of Satan's handiwork: eschew such (abomination), that you may prosper. Satan's plan is (but) to excite enmity and hatred between you, with intoxicants and gambling, and hinder you from the remembrance of Allah, and from prayer: will you not then abstain?
with the JC Holy Bible verses:
Proverbs 31:4 It is not for kings, Lemuel, it is not for kings to drink wine, or for rulers to desire strong drink; 5 lest they drink and forget what has been decreed, and pervert the rights of all the afflicted. 6 Give strong drink to him who is perishing, and wine to those in bitter distress; 7 let them drink and forget their poverty, and remember their misery no more. 5 lest they drink and forget what has been decreed, and pervert the rights of all the afflicted.
John 2:9 When the steward of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the steward of the feast called the bridegroom 10 and said to him, "Every man serves the good wine first; and when men have drunk freely, then the poor wine; but you have kept the good wine until now." 11 This, the first of His signs, Jesus did at Cana in Galilee, and manifested His glory; and His disciples believed in Him.
Eph 5:18 And do not get drunk with wine, for that is debauchery; but be filled with the Spirit,
1Tim 5:23 No longer drink only water, but use a little wine for the sake of your stomach and your frequent ailments.
Even the Koranic author Mohammed took the six days of creation week literally, according to page 368 in the subdivision entitled: "The Winds That Scatter:"
Q51:38 = "We created the heavens and the earth and all between them in Six Days, nor did any sense of weariness touch Us."
We Christians (who understandably, in stark contrast to the author of Islam, do not claim to have created the heavens and the earth!) firmly believe that God not only had His one and only beloved Son who was a Divine member of the Trinitarian Godhead along with the Father and the Holy Spirit, but that His Son not merely claimed to be but was in fact that Trinitarian Voice (not of Michael nor Gabriel) who spoke to Moses from the Burning Bush in the desert and from above the Ark of the Covenant between the Two Cherubim:
Ex 3:6 And he said, "I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac [Ishmael not included!], and the God of Jacob." And Moses hid his face, for he was afraid to look at God.
Ex 3:14 God said to Moses, "I AM WHO I AM." And he said, "Say this to the people of Israel, 'I AM has sent me to you.'" Ex 3:15 God also said to Moses, "Say this to the people of Israel, 'The LORD [YHWH], the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac [Ishmael not included!], and the God of Jacob, has sent me to you': this is my name for ever, and thus I am to be remembered throughout all generations.
Ex 31:18 And he gave to Moses, when he had made an end of speaking with him upon Mount Sinai, the two tables of the testimony, tables of stone, written with The Finger of God.
Numbers 7:89 And when Moses went into the tent of meeting to speak with the LORD, he heard The Voice speaking to him from above the mercy seat that was upon the ark of the testimony, from between the two cherubim; and It spoke to him.
Deut 9:10 And the LORD gave me the two tables of stone written with The Finger of God; and on them were all the words which the LORD had spoken with you on the mountain out of the midst of the fire on the day of the assembly.
John 8:58 Jesus said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I AM."
[Not a present-tense typo, and not the declaration of one insane, for He said in another place]:
John 14:9 Jesus said to him, "Have I been with you so long, and yet you do not know Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; how can you say, 'Show us the Father'?
And who was that Father? He (not: "It") was and is the Son, according to:
Isa 9:6 For to us a Child is born, to us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder, and His name will be called "Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace."
Even the Jewish authors of the Old Testament recognized that God has His Son:
Prov 30:4 Who has ascended to heaven and come down? Who has gathered the wind in his fists? Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and what is His Son's name? Surely you know!
That is NOT to say that Mary was: "The Mother of GOD" (i.e. The Trinitarian Father and Son and Holy Spirit), but rather was: the mother of Jesus the Christ. Jesus received his Son of God nature from His Father (not Mary), but his Son of man nature came from Mary (who had been created by The Son of God before He was conceived in Mary's womb and took human form). Also, GOD (Almighty as to The Trinitarian Godhead of Father and Son and Holy Spirit) did not die on a cross, but instead the Son of man died on a cross (while the Son of God nature of Jesus never died nor burned in Hades).
Indeed, even more that The Redeemer of the penitent of all humanity for all time, this Son of God created the entire Universe and everything in it:
Colossians 1:11 May you be strengthened with all power, according to His glorious might, for all endurance and patience with joy, 12 giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in light. 13 He has delivered us from the dominion of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, 14 in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. 15 He is the image of the invisible God, the first-born of all creation; 16 for in Him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or authorities: all things were created through Him and for Him. 17 He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. 18 He is the head of the body, the church; He is the beginning, the first-born from the dead, that in everything He might be pre-eminent. 19 For in Him all the fulness of God was pleased to reside, 20 and through Him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of His cross. 21 And you, who once were estranged and hostile in mind, doing evil works, 22 He has now reconciled in His body of flesh by His death, in order to present you holy and blameless and irreproachable before Him, 23 provided that you continue in the faith, stable and steady, not shifting from the hope of the gospel which you heard.
Hebrews 1:1 In many and various ways God spoke of old to our fathers by the prophets; 2 but in these last days He has spoken to us by [His] Son, whom He appointed the heir of all things, through whom also He created the world. 3 He reflects the glory of God and bears the very stamp of His nature, upholding the universe by His word of power. When He had made purification for sins, He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, 4 having become as much superior to angels as the name He has obtained is more excellent than theirs. 5 For to what angel did God ever say, "You are my Son, today I have generated You"? Or again, "I will be to Him a Father, and He shall be to Me a Son"? 6 And again, when He brings the first-born into the world, He says, "Let all God's angels worship Him." 7 Of the angels He says, "Who makes His angels winds, and His servants flames of fire." 8 But of the Son He says, "Your throne, God, is for ever and ever, the righteous scepter is the scepter of Your kingdom. 9 You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; therefore God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness beyond Your comrades." 10 And, "You, Lord, did found the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of Your hands; 11 they will perish, but You remain; they will all grow old like a garment, 12 like a mantle You will roll them up, and they will be changed. But You are the same, and Your years will never end."
At this point, if you must (or the sake of further research), you can read pages 4 through 13, 26, 34 through 37, 66 though 77, and 347 (among several others, I assume) in the designated Koran book identified above....all of which reek with inuendos and inferences that misconstrue and misrepresent Jesus as not being part of the Divine Trinitarian Godhead nor THE Son of God. However, my advice is to at least postpone and preferably bypass doing so, unless you are driven and possessed to laboriously wade through the literary-prose muck specified, if you have the time.
If, the as you read them the pseudo-scholastic and quasi-religious subtle indoctrination and brainwashing, keep in mind that Mohammedites and their Qur'an (or Koran) never once get the name of God (i.e. the LORD or The Lord)) right...and instead ALWAYS name the name: "Allah."
Also, although we do have an Old-Testament record (and a New-Testament record of Christ-crucifying scribes and pharisees) of Israel and Judah being so incessantly and relentlessly disobedient that they were finally taken away into Babylonian and other holocaustic captivity by Nebuchadnezzar, Darius, Belshazzar, Cyrus, Nero, Hitler, etc., God did promise restoration for a remnant of them as indicated by God through Paul's enlightenment given in Romans chapters 9 through 11, and mentioned in Revelation 7:5-8.
Understand that Mohammad lived 500 A.D. (after Christ), and so instead of being the originator and there-on-the-spot recorder of Biblical history, he was an after-the-fact plagiarist-at-worst or copyist-at-best...and a significantly inaccurate-at-times revisionist at that...in spite of his briefly-mentioned promotion of two-or-three-additional-wives polygamy.
The Koran (and it's likely relation and conceptual similarity to the arabic-lettered Qur'an) contains much which both the Old and New Testaments of the JC Holy Bible already have, and much which is useful for ideology and practice in lifestyle, but which the KJV/RSV/etc. JC Holy Bibles puts much clearer and concisely - and which is thankfully devoid of the serious and even blasphemous aberrations and apostate heresies engrained in what amounts to be Bible-replacement, redundant-against-Scripture, book-of-mormon-type, apocrypha called: "the Koran."
Having said that, I would rather be comfortable within a group of loveless muslim women wearing their warm-weather hijab burkas, and proud to be with them....that be harassed being within a group of typical summertime-misattired american females (and, worse yet: pseudo-"christians" at that!) and thoroughly ashamed to be associated with them. In fact, it would be dangerous to be around those who are publicly mopheaded, naked-armed sleevesless, nude-legged slacksless, or soxlessly wearing sandals, being that:
Prov 13:20 He who walks with wise [humans wearing hijab burkas] becomes wise, but the companion of [immodest warm-weather american-female] fools will suffer harm.
Prov 14:34 Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.
I sincerely hope that push does not come to shove as to who I would support in any defensive war effort!