The Absurdity of the Muslim Jesus Claim

There is this Islamic idea  that Jesus was a Muslim. I know it  sounds very strange, very absurd and some  people might ask why I’m even talking  about this. But  people believe in very weird things. It  is actually a fundamental Islamic  idea, very popular in the Muslim world,  propagated by Muslim preachers and  apologists,  that Jesus was a Muslim and that he will  come back  as a Muslim. What Muslims mean when they  say that Jesus was a Muslim  is that Jesus was misrepresented by  Christians,  that he was actually just a prophet who  called people to submit to Allah. And  that he was basically completely in  agreement with Islamic  belief, Islamic tradition and that he  would have  followed Muhammad if he had lived at the  same time. They also believe that he will come back  in the future and that he will basically  declare Christianity to be false  and he will break the cross and will  fight for Islam. But why would we trust the Islamic  narrative?

The historical account of the  character of Jesus  is that a character named Jesus existed,  he was involved in some  form of religious, political controversy  and he was  executed or he died. There is no doubt  about this. There is  no reason for us to doubt any of that. Apart from that we don’t really know  what he preached. The rest relies on  religious accounts, on Christian accounts. According to those accounts, those  perspectives,  he preached certain things. He preached  the gospel and  the divinity, his status as the Son, how  you are saved through  him. He seemed to bring a new message – the  gospel –  and he was crucified as a result. According to the Christian historical  account, people also believed  that they had seen him a few days after  his crucifixion. I don’t believe in the Christian  narrative. I don’t even want to debate  that part, that’s not the point here but  when it is already a struggle to believe  in the Christian narrative,  why in the world would we believe in the  Muslim narrative, which came 600 years  later? If you are between trusting the  Christian narrative and the Islamic  narrative,  it should be uncontroversial to say that  the Christian narrative is by far the  more reliable one. And again, I don’t believe in it but it  only makes sense, it is only plausible  that if you want to trust in further  accounts  of Jesus and the things that he did, then  the next most reliable thing would be  the Christian accounts, the early  writings about Jesus,  the early gospels.

What do Muslims  say about the gospels? The Quran says that Jesus brought a book  called the gospel, which is not entirely  true.  Christians have the gospels, which are  accounts about  Jesus and they have a gospel which is  usually considered  the collection of those gospels. The  Quran also says several times that the  Christians should believe in and  judge by the gospel that is with them  and it also says that  they will find Muhammad written in the  gospel that is with them. But can you really unite the gospels  with the beliefs of Islam? If you read through the gospels that  tell us the story of Jesus, you will find teachings on every page of  it that are completely unacceptable to  Islam,  which Islam rejects. It would be very  inconsistent, very illogical, very  dishonest  on the part of Muslims and Islam to  accept certain  parts of the gospels and to reject  the rest of it. If we accept the gospels  as they are,  then we have to reject Islam as false  because  the gospels are completely inconsistent  with the message of the Quran,  of Muhammad. If we reject the gospels  entirely,  then what do we have left as a source  about Jesus? Nothing. The only thing we have from an  Islamic perspective  is the Quran and the words of Muhammad,  which  as we have established came  over 600 years  after the events of Jesus. Why would  we trust that? Why would we dismiss the Christian  accounts and trust the Islamic accounts  and then  go out and believe that Jesus was a  Muslim? No reasonable person would do  this. 

If somebody came  out 600 years after Muhammad and made up  stories about Muhammad  and said that Muhammad’s message was  originally different but it was  distorted by his  followers, would that be believable? Would  Muslims buy that  or would they completely reject that? In  fact, there were people who have asserted  that  Muhammad’s successors and followers  corrupted his message. There were even  people  in his time who asserted that Muhammad’s  message was actually different  but that it was corrupted by his  successors. If we want to believe  Islam’s narrative that Jesus’ message was  completely lost, completely forgotten,  completely corrupted,  and we then choose to believe the  Islamic narrative without any proper  justification, then why would we not do  the same thing with other people who  tell us the same story about  Muhammad and Islam? 

If I now came out and  claim to be communicating with Allah  and claim to be getting  revelations through an angel, and if I  told you that Muhammad’s message was  completely different  but that Muslims actually corrupted his  message, would you then believe me? If not, why not? We could only accept  Islam’s  absurd message that Jesus was a Muslim  as true  if we had enough reason to believe that  everything  the Quran says and everything that  Muhammad says  is true and that we can trust the chain  of people  who tell us things about Muhammad. Unfortunately that is very hard to do.  Muslims can’t really establish proper  reasons  to convince people that these books are  indeed true. 

As an outsider, as somebody  who  thinks reasonably, who establishes logic,  who looks at  the history of history, it is the most  reasonable thing to do  to look at the established historical accounts  of Jesus and to then say that there are  certain Christian accounts  about Jesus which may or may not be  partially true, but it would be insanely  absurd  for anybody to go ahead and say “No, the  Christian accounts are  unreliable and false obviously but the Islamic message can be trusted.” That’s absurd. Looking at it from here  and also considering that Islam’s  message is otherwise very poor  and that we don’t have any reason to  believe in the truth of Islam,  we can confidently say no matter what  you believe in,  Jesus was definitely not a Muslim  and Jesus will definitely not come back  as a Muslim.