Friday, December 14, 2012

Nabee Isa Alayhis Salaam & "The Da Vinci Code"

The following Khutbah was delivered by me at the Islamic Society of York Region Masjid on when 35 students from a Catholic Diocese visited our Masjid to observe our modes of prayer. I chose the above titled subject for my Bayaan. For the benefit of our distinguished visitors, I used the equivalent English [Biblical] names wherever necessary. The verses from the Noble Quran were recited in Arabic followed with the necessary translations.

In the Name of Almighty Allah Most Beneficent, Most Merciful

Assalamualaykum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuhu

On this Muslim day of Sabbath, I extend our warm welcome to our brothers and sisters from the Quinti Catholic Diocese. I call upon Almighty God, the Creator and Sustainer of the heavens and the earth. Almighty God Who bestowed life and forgiveness upon Prophet Adam and his wife Eve as progenitors of mankind. Almighty God Who brought Noah and the believers safely through the flood; Who was the friend and the Giver of sons to Abraham in his old age; Who preserved Lot and Who led Moses and the Israelites; Whose many gifts rested upon David and Solomon.

Almighty God Who blessed the wombs of Elizabeth, the mother of John the Baptist and her beloved cousin, Mary the mother of Jesus Christ, the Messiah sent as a Sign to mankind. Almighty God Who has never deserted humanity and Who, in His Loving Kindness, sent Muhammad as the final prophet and mercy to mankind, as promised throughout the previous Scriptures.

Allah in verse 55 of Surah Ali-i-Imran Almighty Allah declares: "Behold! Allah said: "O Jesus I will take thee and raise thee to Myself And clear thee (of the falsehoods) of those who blaspheme; I will make those who follow thee superior to those who reject faith."

Jesus of Nazareth [peace be upon him] is one of the most widely revered religious figure in the world. Not only is he central to Christianity, the largest religion in the world, he is also venerated throughout Islam, the world's second largest faith. Muslims believe in the Virgin Birth and the miracles of Jesus Alayhis Salaam. But this shared interest in his message goes much further. His actions and words introduce something new to monotheism: They develop the merciful spirit of Almighty God's nature. Jesus Alayhis Salaam confirmed the Torah, the importance of the Absolute Truth with regard to the Oneness of the Glorious Creator and Maker.

He preached brotherhood, compassion and self-purification as crucial links between learning the words of Almighty God's Message and possessing the wisdom to carry it out. Muslims display a true and loving spirit of charity, towards Jesus Christ and his mother Mary (Maryam) peace be upon them. This deep love and devotion for Jesus and his beloved mother Alayhim Salaam spring from the fountainhead of their faith - the Most Holy and Glorious Quran. Muslims do not take the holy name of Jesus, in his own language, without saying Alayhis Salaam. (Peace be upon him).

Almighty Allah informs us with words of wisdom in verse 61 of Surah Az-Zukhruf: "And Jesus shall be a Sign (for the coming of) the Hour (of Judgment): Therefore have no doubt about the Hour, but follow ye Me: this is the Straight Way."

This verse is understood to refer the second coming of Jesus [peace be upon him] in the Last Days before the Resurrection, when according to Muslim belief, he will destroy all false doctrines and prepare the way for the universal acceptance of Islam - the Gospel of Unity and Peace leading to the Straight Way - the Path of Righteousness [Seeratal Mustaqeem]. Whenever a Muslim mentions the name Jesus without the words of respect - Alayhis Salaam, he or she would be considered uncouth and acting in an un-Islamic manner. Nabi Esa Alayhis Salaam (Jesus Christ Peace be upon him) is mentioned by name twenty-five times in the Most Noble and Glorious Quran spread over fifteen different chapters. He is mentioned five times more by name including titles of respect than our beloved Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him).

Throughout the Most Holy and Glorious Quran, he is addressed with respect as: Ibne Maryam; (Son of Mary) Massih, (Messiah) Abdullah, (Servant), Rasulullah (Messenger). He is spoken of as 'the word of Allah' as the 'spirit of Allah' as a 'sign of Allah' and numerous other epithets of honour. The Most Noble Quran honours this mighty Messenger of Almighty Allah, and the Muslims have not fallen short over the past fourteen hundred years in doing the same. There is not a single disparaging remark in the Most Noble Quran to which even the most jaundiced among the Christians can take exception.

The creed of Islam is given to us in verse 136 of Surah Al-Baqarah: Say: "We believe in Almighty God, and the revelation given to us, and to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob and the tribes, and that given to Moses and Jesus and that given to all prophets from their Lord: We make no distinction between any of them: And we bow to Almighty God (in Islam)".

It is absurd to write a fictional story, where the plot or story line revolves around non-fictional characters. It is even more outrageous when these real-life divinely ordained characters are illustrious, famous, distinguished, renowned and recognized God-sent personalities such as all the Prophets of Almighty God.. It is also ludicrous to suggest that a supposedly fictional story such as the "Da Vinci Code" will not have an effect on or influence the understanding or thinking of the general man in the street regarding these personalities, who were chosen by Almighty Allah to influence the course of history. Experience shows conclusively that, however solidly the pedestal of blasphemy and Fitnah may stand, it will not endure for sooner or later, it will collapse upon the perpetrators themselves for declares Almighty God Most Exalted in verse 6 of Surah Al An'am: "See they not how many of those before them We did destroy?"

Now comes the argument from history, looking backwards and forwards. Are the perpetrators of blasphemy so short-sighted or arrogant as to suppose that they are firmly established on earth, safe and secure in their privileges. Are they not being reminded of blasphemers in the past, who failed in their sacred duties and were wiped out? But alas, those without faith, instead of facing facts squarely "turn away there from" and have proven the truthfulness of Almighty God's promise which is made very clear to us in verse 8 of Surah As-Saff: "Their intention is to extinguish Allah's Light (By Blowing) with their mouths: But Allah will complete (The Revelation of) His Light. Even though the unbelievers may detest (it)."

This most beautiful verse is a warning to the perpetrators of blasphemy, injustice and oppression that Almighty God's Light is unquenchable. The more these perpetrators of injustice try to quench God's Light, the clearer it shines, to confound and shame them!

Members of the media and film industry often cite "Freedom of Speech" in the presentation of their blasphemous views. Freedom of Speech is, however, not a license to say anything. It does not grant the right to plagiarize, it does not allow for defamation and it cannot, under any circumstances, be considered to be a manner of legalizing or even tolerating vilification, slander and blasphemy of any type or degree. The Prophets are all Almighty God's Messengers to humanity. They were preferred and selected by the Most Glorious Creator Himself above all other members of the human race and were apportioned the important responsibility of conveying His divine message. Muslims are commanded to believe in and show utmost respect to all the Prophets of Almighty God as commanded in verse 285 of Surah Al-Baqara: "The believers believe in Allah, His Angels, His Books, and His Messengers. They say, "We make no distinction between one another of His Messenger."

It is also the foremost duty and responsibility of Muslims to protect the honour and dignity of every one of the Messengers of Almighty God. An attack on any Prophet of God is an attack on Islam. Among the Messengers sent by Almighty God, Jesus Alayhis Salam holds a very unique and special place. His birth was miraculous, through the command of His Maker, his mission was unique and he will return to the earth to re-establish the din of Haqq [religion of Truth] upon the way of Muhammad Sallallahoo 'alayhi wa sallam. The claims being made in the movie, "The Da Vinci Code? about Jesus 'Alayhis Salam, being married to Mary Magdalene, are blatant lies.

Muslims all over the world condemn, in the strongest possible terms, the notion or assertion that Jesus Alayhis Salam was married and had children as presented in the movie "The Da Vinci Code". It is our foremost duty as Muslims to oppose such false claims. It is also a must for us to engage in propagating and teaching truth regarding this mighty Prophet of Almighty God. It must also be borne in mind that the Muslim objection is on the basis of the lie being attributed to his very noble life. To reiterate, the Most Holy and Glorious Quran confirms in the clearest terms that Nabi Esa Alayhis Salaam (Jesus) was a true servant and messenger of Almighty God. Muslims hold him in the highest reverence and believe that he was miraculously born of a virgin. He was endowed with the power to perform many miracles and was sent to preach the true worship of Almighty God.

His call, from the beginning, was marked by complete uprightness and piety. His call was based on the principle that there is no mediation between the Creator and His creatures, even though this teaching was in conflict with the Pharisees superficial interpretation of the Torah. He made them understand that the Ten Commandments had more value than they could have imagined. There is ground for closer relations between Muslims and Christians because, essentially, Muslims believe the same things about Nabi Esa Alayhis Salaam (Jesus Christ) as did his earliest followers. It is the foremost duty of every Muslim to advance a better understanding of the Islamic faith throughout the western world in order to counter the crude misrepresentations and vulgar misrepresentations of Islam.

Be so as it may, the time has come for Muslims and Christians to forge closer ties between them; ties based upon trust and understanding. In the name of peace and brotherhood, I now address my Christian brothers and sisters. Allow me to quote a verse from your Holy Bible to bring to light the following most beautiful verse. By acting upon this verse, we would most certainly be fulfilling our Divine Duty as Almighty God has declared: "Blessed are the peace-makers for they shall be called the children of God."

May Almighty God's everlasting peace and blessings be upon all of you. Ameen

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