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Is Allah the same as the Christian God?

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Note from the the original contributor: It would be nice if certain people (apparently Muslims?) would stop trying to alter other people's answers here and would instead supply their own answer(s) to this question separately. Please show respect for the beliefs of others, even Jews and Christian infidels.


Answer 1
: From a Christian Perspective

No, Allah is not the same as the Christian God, nor is Allah the same as the God of the Jews. Anyone who tries to tell you otherwise is either uninformed or indifferent to the topic, or else is being deliberately deceptive in order to sow uncertainty, doubt, and confusion in the minds of others. The three faiths of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam all recognize -- to differing degrees -- different persons, prophets, and Holy Texts as absolute truth and revelation.

Christians, unlike Muslims and Jews, believe that Jesus the man was, and is, God, and that he was sent to earth by God.

The historical Jesus of Nazareth is not only a man but the Son in a divine Trinity -- consisting of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit -- which three together comprise one single and indivisible God. In Christian belief, therefore, Jesus is both man and God.

Christians regard Jesus as the Messiah or Christ: He is God become incarnate in human form, a deliverer of mankind foretold by the ancient Hebrew prophets. Such a deliverance (from sin, death, and separation from God) was necessary because all other men fell short of God's standard by selfishly falling into sin and pride. Jesus, in Christian belief, is the perfect man whom God had originally intended in Adam when He created mankind; however, Adam -- having been given free will by God, to choose right or wrong -- chose love of self over love of God.

It is true that the word "Allah" is the word for "God" in the Arabic language, and therefore the word "Allah" is a term used by all Arabic speakers (even Arabic Christians) in reference to the idea of "God." However, a critical and insurmountable distinction must be made between [1] "God" as a word (that is, as a linguistic term) and [2] "God" as philosophical concept or living actuality.

The word for "God" may, and often does, vary from language to language and from nation to nation. For example, German = "Gott"; French = "Dieu"; Spanish = "Dios"; Latin = "Deus"; Hebrew = "El"; Greek = "Theos"; Russian = "Bog"; Hindi = "Bhagavana"; and so forth.

However, speakers of these languages around the globe do not use the Arabic word "Allah" to denote their God -- unless, of course, they are adherents of Islam. It is a fundamental tenet of Islam (known as the Shahadah) that: "There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is his prophet." In this context, the word lower-cased word "god" may be translated from Arabic into English as "maker" or "creator."

To be lulled or dunned or confused into thinking that -- because Jews, Christians, and Muslims each worship an eternal and omnipotent deity -- the words "El" (in Hebrew), "God" (in English), and "Allah" (in Arabic) must all therefore refer to the very same deity, with characteristics, and a relationship to mankind, universally recognized and acknowledged by all three faiths -- to commit such an error is to fatally conflate semantics with theology, to mistake a word [deity] with the ineffable actuality.

While it is correct that Arab-speaking Christians use their native word "Allah" to refer to the God of Christianity, it may be noted that this is simply a linguistic necessity -- a necessity that is, moreover, enforced by law. Inside Saudi Arabia (which is the place of Islam's origin and the home of the sacred Islamic sites of Mecca and Medina), the practice of Christianity is literally illegal. The nation, or government, of Saudi Arabia is an Islamic theocracy in the form of an absolute monarchy; and according to the U.S. State Department, freedom of religion within Saudi Arabia "is neither recognized nor protected under the law and is severely restricted in practice." The very existence of Christian church buildings, Jewish synagogues, Buddhist temples, and so forth is not allowed there. Even private worship inside a home may be raided and halted by the country's religious police, and the worshipers arrested. Thus it may be said that the term "Arab-speaking Christian" is, inside the country of Islam's origin, a contradiction in terms, as Saudi citizens are regarded as Muslim by definition, and both conversion to Christianity and preaching Christianity are legally punishable crimes. If Christians and Jews and Muslims all worship the same God, as some would tell you, why are non-Muslims subject to arrest and detention (and worse) in the home country of Islam for following their faiths?

In Christian belief, Jesus holds a role that is unique and irreplaceable in all of human history: "Jesus saith unto him, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life: NO MAN COMETH UNTO THE FATHER, BUT BY ME." (John 14:6)

Christians therefore cannot view God as being synonymous with Allah as worshiped by Muslims, who treat Jesus of Nazareth as a "prophet" (one of many) -- one who preceded (in their view) the culminating prophet of Muhammad. The basis of present-day Christianity, and of Christians' view of God, cannot be found in the Koran (or Qur'an) but only in the Bible, which is composed of the Old and New Testaments.

The Christian Old Testament is exactly the same as that collection of Hebrew writings known to Jews as the "Torah," the "Prophets," and the "Wisdom Writings." Collectively, Christians call these writings (compiled over hundreds of years) the Old Testament, while Jews know them as the Tanakh.

The New Testament includes the four Gospels (which are accounts relating the "good news" of the birth, life, work, teachings, death, and resurrection of Jesus); also, a narrative recording the works done by early Christians (called "Acts of the Apostles," written by Luke); plus various letters written by the founders of the Christian faith (the "epistles" of the Apostles Paul, Peter, John, and so forth).

Christians have also attempted to express the essence of the Bible in three great historical creeds. These are the Apostles' Creed, the Nicaean Creed, and the Athanasian Creed. (These creeds are held by Christians worldwide and were all composed long before the division of Christianity into today's predominant Protestant, Orthodox (Eastern or Russian), and Roman Catholic branches.) All that is contained within these three ancient creeds is contained within the Bible itself; it has simply been condensed and distilled, so to speak, into a highly concentrated form. These creeds, however, do not replace the Bible; they simply draw from it.

All three of these creeds emphasize that Christians acknowledge and worship a single God, but that this single God is expressed in three Persons: namely, the Father, the Son (who is Jesus the Christ, or Messiah), and the Holy Spirit (also called the Comforter or the Paraclete, a term which means "advocate" or "counsel").

This divine Trinity, while expressed as three Persons, is nonetheless one single, indivisible God.

Christians believe that Jesus of Nazareth is the only begotten son of God. Jesus as a human being was historically and physically born to the virgin Mary in Bethlehem; but as a person in the divine trinity of God, the Son has existed from the beginning of time. Christians view Jesus as the Christ, or Messiah, a man without sin who became incarnate (that is, took human form) to intercede for mankind for God's mercy. He could intercede because Jesus, unlike the rest of humanity, was without sin, and thus he was the perfect human, the embodiment of that which God had intended to create when He created mankind.

To Christians, Jesus is not simply a prophet (as he is viewed in Islam), but the long-awaited deliverer of humanity whom the ancient Hebrew prophets had foretold. Thus Jesus told his Jewish hearers: "Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day; and he saw it and was glad ... Before Abraham was, I am." (See the Gospel According to John, Chapter 8:56-58.) Jesus was a man, born of woman, but his crucifixion, death, and resurrection (all of which are denied by Islam in the Koran or Q'uran) fulfilled -- by his unique, perfect, and unrepeatable act of self-sacrifice -- the will of the eternal God to draw mankind to Him through infinite grace and forgiveness.

[End of "Answer 1: A Christian Perspective."]

Answer 2: From an Islamic Perspective

Yes. In the Qur'an there is a complete chapter titled 'Maryam' (Mary) that confirms Maryam's virgin birth. The Qur'an states the following on the birth of Jesus (peace be upon him):

(Remember) when the angels said, "O Mary, God gives you good news of a word from Him (God), whose name is the Messiah Jesus, son of Mary, revered in this world and the Hereafter, and one of those brought near (to God). He will speak to the people from his cradle and as a man, and he is of the righteous." She said, "My Lord, how can I have a child when no mortal has touched me?" He said, "So (it will be). God creates what He wills. If He decrees a thing, He says to it only, 'Be!' and it is." (Qur'an, 3:45-47)

In Islam religion, Jesus (peace be upon him) is believed as one of the greatest prophets and one of the greatest messengers of God to mankind. So, Jesus (peace upon him) as messenger of God, believes, for sure, in God and the only one God. He never claimed that he is son of God or God and never called his followers to worship him.

It is worthy to emphasize that both Jesus (peace upon him) and Mohammed (peace upon him) came to mankind to call for worshiping only and the only one God. Neither of them nor Moses came to change the basic doctrine of the belief in one and only one God. This doctrine that was brought by earlier prophets, including Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, David, Solomon, and others. Both Jesus (peace upon him) and Mohammed received the revelation, as other prophets, from God to confirm and renew the doctrine of worshiping one (and only one) God.

Muslims believe that Jesus was not crucified. They believe that the enemies of Jesus (peace upon him) plotted and planned to crucify Jesus. However, God miraculously saved Jesus and raised him up to Him (to God). God, the All Mighty and the All Capable, put the likeness of Jesus (peace upon him) over another man. The enemies of Jesus (peace upon him) thought that this other man is Jesus and they took him and crucified him. God has said:

...They said, "We killed the Messiah Jesus, son of Mary, the messenger of God." They did not kill him, nor did they crucify him, but the likeness of him was put on another man (and they killed that man)... (Qur'an, 4:157)

Muslims believe in the return of Jesus (peace upon him) to our world to settle all disputes and fix peace and love and worship of the only one God.

The Muslims believe that there is only one God, Allah.
He is the creator and the master of every thing alone.
The Muslims' basic belief is that,

None is worthy of being worshiped except Allah and Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) is the Apostle Of Allah.

Surah 112 - Al Ikhlas THE PURITY OF FAITH

Say: He is God, the One and Only;
God, the Eternal, Absolute;
He begetteth not, nor is He begotten;
And there is none like unto Him.



Answer 3: From a Judaic Perspective

To start with, Jews do not weigh in on the theological disputes between Christians and Muslims. This comes from a long tradition of keeping the Jewish voice low as to avoid provoking the more powerful Christians and Muslims who are often bothered or incensed at perceived Jewish blasphemies. When spoken in an English context, the use of the word "Allah" is clearly a reference to God as conceived of in the Islamic tradition (see parenthetical note below). As a result, this would naturally be a question that Jews ordinarily would be silent upon.
(It is worth noting that several Post-Islamic religions such as Druze and Baha'i also use the word Allah to refer to their concepts of God which Muslims reject since they claim that their Allahs had prophets after Muhammad, but since Muslims are orders of magnitude more common than Post-Islamic religious people, the term "Allah" is usually seen as referring to the Islamic conception of God.)

However, when called to answer, most Jews will note, like the Christians do, that the Christian concept of God is a trinitarian God which is fundamentally distinct with the radical monotheism of Judaism and Islam. As such, Jews, like Christians, do not view the Christian God as being synonymous with Allah as worshiped by Muslims. Whether the God worshiped by Jews is the same as the one worshiped by Christians, most Jews will respond in the negative because of the trinitarian issue. Whether the God worshiped by Jews is the same as the one worshiped by Muslims, is a much more debated issue in Jewish circles.

As noted in Answer 1, Jews also use the vernacular word for "God" when speaking to each other or to non-Jews in common settings. As a result, Arabic-speaking Jews, will refer to the Jewish God with the Arabic word "Allah" when speaking in Arabic. This does not indicate that Jews believe in the Islamic conception of the term, but rather is used for expediency, since (as noted later), Jews do not speak the Name of God.

Fundamental writings of the Jewish faith include the Torah (sometimes called the Pentateuch, since it contains five books); the Prophets; and the Wisdom Writings. All these writings are sometimes referred to collectively as Tanakh or Miqra.

The Tanakh encompasses ancient historical records (such as the books of Chronicles, Kings, and Judges); the texts of the "Major" and "Minor" Prophets (such as Samuel, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and many others); the Psalms (which are songs speaking to and praising God); and the Wisdom Books such as Job, Ecclesiastes, and Proverbs.

The later text known as the Talmud -- while it is very important -- is in the nature of interpretation, codification, teaching, and analysis all following from the Torah or Tanakh.

The Torah or Pentateuch itself, however, consists of five books commonly known as "the books of Moses," which are:

1. GENESIS (the "origin" of this world);
2. EXODUS (the "going out" of Israel from Egypt);
3. LEVITICUS ("concerning the Levites");
4. NUMBERS ("the numbering of the Israelites"); and finally
5. DEUTERONOMY ("the "second law").

Judaism is the worship of the one true God according to God's revelation to the prophet Moses. Moses, as the leader of the Hebrews (or Jews or Israelites), led his people out of slavery in ancient Egypt and ultimately to their promised land, Canaan or Israel, a place which had been promised them by God Himself.

Moses codified many of the beliefs held by his forefathers such as the patriarchs Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph. Under the all-powerful pharaohs the ancient Egyptians, like many tribes, worshiped many competing gods (a practice called polytheism). But Moses consolidated the long-held belief of the Hebrews in a single, all-powerful, all-knowing God (a practice called monotheism). The essence of this belief is seen in this crucial passage from Deuteronomy:

"Hear, O Israel, the LORD our God is one LORD: And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might." (Deuteronomy 6:4-5)

The Hebrews, believing in this God, refused even under threat of death to worship the competing gods of other tribes -- gods such as Molech, Dagon, and the numerous gods of the ancient Egyptians. To have worshiped other gods, willingly or under duress, would have violated the first of the great Ten Commandments handed down by Moses himself (see Exodus, Chapter 20, or Deuteronomy, Chapter 5):

"I am the LORD thy God ... Thou shalt have no other gods before [that is, besides] me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image [that is, any idols] ... Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them."

The ancient Jews worshiped their one God so reverently that they rarely even dared to speak His name. He was known as "El" or "El Shaddai" (which can be roughly translated into English by phrases such as "God," "the Lord God," or "God Almighty"). On very rare and holy occasions he might be addressed by the explicitly Israelite designation of YHWH (the modern-day version of this is usually rendered as "Yahweh" or sometimes JeHoVaH). But in order to speak of Him without profaning His name, the Hebrews also used such lesser terms as Adonai and Elohim and Adonai. Even today, many of the most reverent Jews are reluctant to write or invoke His name casually (and thereby profane it); therefore some will refer to Him with the written phrase "G-d" as a way of showing reverence towards His ineffability.

The majority of the Jewish community simply ignores Jesus in much the same way that most Christians ignore Joseph Smith or Muhammad, seeing them as misguided and incorrect persons whose erroneous beliefs led to the founding of distinct faiths that lack the very heart of the religion whence they came. However, a few Modern-day Jews may view Jesus of Nazareth as a great rabbi (that is, a teacher, preacher, or spiritual leader); but unlike Christians they do not regard him as the Messiah -- that is, as "the anointed one," a divinely chosen deliverer spoken of in ancient Israelite tradition. While these Jews may regard Jesus as a great rabbi or rebbe, however, they do not accept the New Testament of the Christian faith as one of their holy texts.

The historical Jesus was certainly a Jew by birth and raising, as was his great advocate or apostle Paul of Tarsus; and the "Old Testament" revered by Christianity is precisely the same as the "Tanakh" of the Jews. It may be fairly said that Christianity itself began life historically as a sect or offshoot of the Hebrew faith sometimes referred to as "Messianic Judaism." Portions of the New Testament writings, indeed, are concerned with discussions (especially between Paul of Tarsus and Jesus's disciple Simon Peter) as to how much of traditional Jewish law and practice (for example, dietary restrictions and the circumcision of males) ought to be followed by those Christians who did not come to the faith from the Jewish populace.

Judaism also does not accept any Islamic claims of Muhammad being either a prophet or a patriarch in the historic line of Abraham, Moses, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Samuel, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and so forth. Nor do Jews regard Muhammad's textual creation the Qur'an, as a holy book whose claims and revelations they accept. Neither Christians nor Jews accept the Islamic Shahadah that "There is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is the messenger of Allah." While all three faiths worship a single, omnipotent deity -- one whom each calls (in different languages) "God" -- the actuality of God is quite different among these faiths, and those differences cannot rightfully be glossed over with hazy generalities. To do so is to do a disservice to all believers.
Additional Answer:
In reality, there really is no similarity to best describe the Judeo-Christian beliefs of God to the Muslim Islamic belief. Judaism and Christianity have the Old Testament in common. Islam believes both Old Testament and New Testament have been partially corrupted in transmission while the Koran is believed by Muslims to be the final and infallible revelation of God's will. Though Muslims believe in God which they call Allah, Islam teaches that Allah is all-powerful, sovereign and 'unknowable' while Judaism and Christianity both teach the Creator God to be revealed as merciful, compassionate and knowable (see Jeremiah 9:24 and John 17:3). The Christian text teaches the God of the Old Testament was the Word and it was He who Abraham and the other patriarchs and prophets worshiped. Islam teaches the Word, aka Jesus 'as one of perhaps 124,000 messengers of prophets Allah has sent and is one of the 25 listed in the Koran - but He is not the redeemer' (Marvin Olasky, "Islam vs. Liberty," World, Sept 10, 2011).Lastly, the Quran never presents Allah as a god of love. Conversely, for the Jews and Christians, God keeps His covenant of love forever (see Deuteronomy 7:9 and 1 John 4:7-16) In short, God is love . All in all, there are more differences and conflicts between the Judeo-Christian texts and the Muslim text, as well as how the Koran conflicts with secular history.
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