The Koran

Mohammed Ali has said there are 3,333 errors in the Bible. I have studied form criticism, textual criticism, and higher criticism and have not found those errors. I have found alleged errors but no actual errors. Some people like to take the more difficult parts which they do not understand and call them errors.

The point is the Bible has been subjected to every form of criticism and survived. It has been the best seller for over 300 years and has been translated into 2,123 dialects. Nine out of every ten Americans own a Bible.

Have you ever heard of a scholarly objective analysis of the Koran? If Christians are to have their Holy Book questioned surely no Muslim would oppose having the Koran investigated.

However, John Wansbrough of the School of Oriental and African Studies in London said that subjecting the Koran to “instruments and techniques of Biblical criticism are virtually unknown.”

The Angel Gabriel is said to have told Muhammad: “This book is not to be questioned.” Recently “The New York Times” raised questions about the veil of obscurity related to the Koran. Questioning it hasn’t been a popular thing to do. The Arab scholar, Suliman Bashear, argued that Islam developed over time as a religion rather than emerging suddenly. His students in the University of Nablus threw him out the window as a result. Salman Rushdie’s “Satanic Verses” resulted in a fatwa because it was thought to mock Muhammad. Naguib Mahfouz was stabbed because his works were said to be irreligious.

Writing under a pseudo-name, Christopher Luxenberg, a scholar of ancient Semitic languages argues the Koran has been mistranslated and misread. His work involving the analysis of the earliest copies of the Koran led him to the conclusion that parts of the Koran came from preexisting Aramaic texts. These he states were misinterpreted by later Islamic scholars who composed the Koran now circulated.

The classic example of this relates to the virgins supposedly awaiting loyal Muslim martyrs. Rather than maidens he observes the original text said they are “white raisins” of crystal clarity.

Semitic scholars agree there was no evidence of the Koran until 691 AD, 59 years after the death of Muhammad. Much of what is known of Muhammad is based on texts that were written 300 years after his death. Wansbrough asserts the text of the Koran now used appears to have been a composite of different texts complied over perhaps hundreds of years. It appears to academicians to have continued to evolve until the last of the seventh century.

There are numerous volumes addressing alleged discrepancies in the Holy Bible. Persons with questions regarding such would benefit from visiting a bookstore and invest in a good one.

Of the Bible George Washington said, “It is impossible to rightly govern without God and the Bible.”

Andrew Jackson observed, “That Book, sir, is the rock on which our republic rests.”

If it is so fundamental to our society we would do well to read it. 135 million Americans say they are occasional readers of the Bible.