There are 11 thoughts on “Temples All the Way Down: Some Notes on the Mi‘raj of Muhammad”.

  1. ” Does the Koran teach that Jesus is the Christ, the Savior of the world, the Creator?”

    Shi’ite Imamology produces an answer that is close to a “yes” when the 12 Imams and certain of the previous prophets are included. In other words, their answer might remind Latter-Day Saints of “Saviours on Mt. Zion” and the “Noble and Great Ones” who “will be My rulers”. Clear thinking about Islam seems to hinge on a deep appreciation for what we do and do not know about the pre-existence.

    As for Jesus Himself, Muslims believe that Jesus is returning.

    • You are correct that the Muslims believe that Jesus is returning, but not for the reasons explained in the Judeo-Christian scriptures.

      “Afterwards the Christians will be called upon and it will be said to them, “Who do you used to worship?” They will say, “We used to worship Jesus son of Allah.” It will be said to them, “You are liars, for Allah has never taken anyone for a wife or a son.” (Bukhari vol 6, book 65, no. 4581)

      According to Islamic eschatology Jesus will abolish Christianity and impose Islam on everyone.

      “Jesus the son of Mary will soon descend amongst you and will judge mankind justly. He will break the cross and kill the pigs [Jews]…“when the son of Mary descends amongst you he will judge the people by the law of Qur’an and not by the law of the gospel.” (Bukhari vol 4, book 60, no. 3448-9)

      Mohamed received a revelation from Allah that commanded Muslims to fight against Jews and Christians until they accepted Islamic hegemony. (Qur’an 9:29)

      “The Jews say, “Ezra is the son of Allah “; and the Christians say, “The Messiah is the son of Allah.” That is their statement from their mouths; they imitate the saying of those who disbelieved [before them]. May Allah destroy them; how are they deluded?” (Qur’an surah 9:30)

      That is why Muslims have been killing Christians and Jews ever since. It should be obvious to any Jew or Christian that the Qur’an did not come from God.

  2. It requires something of a paradigm shift for me to think of Mohammed as something more than what I had previously thought of him. Regardless of my prior lack of esteem, this article tends to open my eyes somewhat as to other possibilities than the ones which I previously ascribed to. It may just so happen that Mohammed is more than I previously gave him credit to be.

    • Whoever they were that wrote it obviously had some holdover knowledge of Christianity. But they left out the basics, faith in the Son of God, repentance and baptism.

  3. I expected to be challenged on this, so I refreshed my memory as to why I don’t believe the being that appeared to Mohamed was Gabriel.

    It is recorded in the Old Testament that Gabriel appeared to Daniel twice. At the first appearance of Gabriel, Daniel was afraid and fell on his face, but Gabriel touched him and stood him on his feet, put him at ease and gave him an understanding of a vision of future events Daniel 8:16-27). The second time Gabriel appeared to Daniel he spoke lovingly and gently and told him about the coming of the Messiah (Daniel 9:20-27). Gabriel appeared to Mary, and when she was troubled about it he said, “fear not” (Luke 1:26-35).

    Contrast this with the appearance of a being to Mohamed. The following is narrated by Mohamed’s second wife, Aisha:

    “The angel came to him and asked him to read. The Prophet replied, “I do not know how to read. The Prophet added, “The angel caught me (forcefully) and pressed me so hard that I could not bear it any more. He then released me and again asked me to read and I replied, ‘I do not know how to read.’ Thereupon he caught me again and pressed me a second time till I could not bear it any more. He then released me and again asked me to read but again I replied, ‘I do not know how to read (or what shall I read)?’ Thereupon he caught me for the third time and pressed me, and then released me and said, ‘Read in the name of your Lord, who has created (all that exists) has created man from a clot. Read!”

    The angel did not identify himself. Aisha goes on to say that Mohamed continued to be filled with fear and ran home to his first wife, Khadija to be comforted. She took him to her cousin, Waraqa who was a Christian. It was Waraqa who then told Mohamed that it was Gabriel who appeared to him.

    (Sahih al-Bukhari, Book of Revelation, Hadith 3, https://muflihun.com/bukhari/1/3 )

    Please judge for yourselves if the being that appeared to Mohamed was the Angel Gabriel sent from God.

    • I’m not committed to the view that the Qur’anic revelation was mediated through Gabriel. Nothing in my position in this article or more generally hinges on it. However, the sources that you cite are relatively late and definitely secondary.

      • If Moroni wasn’t real what would that mean for the validity of the Book of Mormon and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints?

  4. Whether or not an angelic being appeared to or mediated the revelation of the Qur’an to Muhammad is not altogether clear from the early sources. I’m inclined to agree with W. Montgomery Watt that Gabriel was identified as the transmitter of revelation only fairly late in Muhammad’s lifetime; earlier, the preferred term is “al-ruh al-qudus” (“the Holy Spirit”).

    My lifelong study of Islam and my direct experience with innumerable Muslims in and out of the Islamic world and my own doctrinal views also incline me to believe that the revelation to Muhammad was neither satanic nor demonic but rather to agree with what the First Presidency said in an official 1978 statement, that it was the giving through Muhammad of “a portion of God’s light.”

  5. Daniel, I delighted in reading your article about “Temples All the Way Down: Some Notes on the Mi’raj of Muhammad” – the parallels and similarities in our “western-Mormon” scriptures are wonderful! I do believe (as it says in the Book of Mormon in several places) that GOD has given to ALL NATIONS Truths and Light according to their understanding. I suppose that when the FULLNESS is revealed to ALL MEN, the Muslims will recognize that they have had an important part in spreading some “truths” to many millions and the faithful will be found among the “children of GOD” from all over the world. I delight in knowing how INCLUSIVE our Father is and that indeed we are ALL HIS CHILDREN. Thanks for your insightful articles and books – I always feel enlightened and encouraged by the TRUTHS you find in other faith traditions.

  6. I don’t doubt that some being appeared to Mohamed, but it was unlikely to have been Gabriel. I don’t think the being ever told his name to Mohamed, but that the name Gabriel was added later. Does the Koran teach that Jesus is the Christ, the Savior of the world, the Creator?

    “Wherefore, take heed, my beloved brethren, that ye do not judge that which is evil to be of God…wherefore, I show unto you the way to judge; for every thing which inviteth to do good, and to persuade to believe in Christ, is sent forth by the power and gift of Christ; wherefore ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of God. But whatsoever thing persuadeth men to do evil, and believe not in Christ, and deny him, and serve not God, then ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of the devil;” (Moroni 7:14-17)

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