Monday, 20 April 2009

Was Muhammad Illiterate or not? Part III Appendix

A Response to a Muslim’s Attempt of Proving that his Prophet was Illiterate (by Sam Shamoun)

Continuation from Part II


Zawadi has tried to once again refute (*) the fact that the Qur’an conclusive points to Muhammad’s literacy, and he has once again miserably failed to prove his assertion. Since much of his current "rebuttal" is nothing more than bluster and pure fluff I will ignore it. Here I will address several of his points in order to document what I have been saying concerning Zawadi’s gross inability to actually understand what he reads.

He desperately tries to prove that Daniel’s experience with Gabriel is similar to Muhammad being manhandled and violated by his spirit guide. Since he didn’t get my point the first couple of times it seems that I need to walk him through this step by step.

- When Daniel was afraid and trembled at looking at the sight of God’s holy angels did the emissaries torture him like Muhammad’s spirit physically violated him? No.
- Did they nearly squeeze the life out of Daniel much like the spirit did to Muhammad three consecutive times? No.
- Did Daniel think he was demon-possessed much like Muhammad thought? Absolutely not.
- Did Daniel want to throw himself off a cliff to commit suicide much like Muhammad wanted to do after being manhandled by his spirit guide? Not at all.

- Did Daniel run to his family or friends trembling with fear, asking to be covered, like Muhammad did when he ran to his wife Khadija? No.
- Did the angels immediately comfort Daniel and remove all his fears, unlike Muhammad who was tormented and demoralized by his spirit? Yes.

Hopefully, Zawadi gets the point and stops comparing the experiences of his false prophet with the true prophets of God.

Zawadi denies that he claimed that the Bible is silent regarding the nature and manner of revelation. So here I will simply report his own words, this time with added emphasis:

Secondly, Shamoun is arguing from silence. He thinks that just because his Bible does not mention these experiences then that necessarily implies that they didn't happen.

He then repeats the same point he made in another article:

So notice, Shamoun is committing the same fallacy he accused Sami Zaatri of doing. There are many Prophets in the Old Testament that we do not know full and complete details about. Therefore, it would not be fair to say with conviction that they did not have the same experiences.

In other words since the Holy Bible is silent concerning this issue I am doing nothing more than arguing from silence.

He further commits a false analogy and again demonstrates that he has a real hard time comprehending the point being made from what he hears or reads:

Shamoun recently had a debate with Sami Zaatri on the topic, "Is Jesus God", which can be downloaded here. Sam Shamoun says in the 20th minute 10th second...
Your arguing from silence, right, and absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. Now let me repeat that again. Now just because the documents do not say that he said "x" does not mean that he didn't say "x".

Talk about being desperate and misapplying my own words! Even though the Holy Bible doesn’t record every single word or action carried by God or his inspired emissaries it does give us everything we need to know concerning how God acts and works:

"His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness. Through these he has given us his very great and precious promises, so that through them you may participate in the divine nature and escape the corruption in the world caused by evil desires." 2 Peter 1:3-4

This knowledge from God which gives us everything necessary for salvation and living is found within the Holy Writings themselves:

"But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be completely sufficient, thoroughly equipped for EVERY good work." 2 Timothy 3:14-17

This means that the examples provided by the inspired Scriptures are sufficient to inform us on the manner in which God speaks or reveals his words to the prophets, and one of the ways in which he doesn’t inspire a person is by sending a spirit to torment, manhandle, and violate his chosen ones, thereby causing them to contemplate suicide and/or think that they are demon-possessed. In fact, it is not God’s pure Spirit or his holy angels but evil spirits who torment and harm people, especially those whom God has rejected because of their sin and rebellion:

"Now the Spirit of the LORD had departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the LORD tormented him. Saul's attendants said to him, ‘See, an evil spirit from God is tormenting you. Let our lord command his servants here to search for someone who can play the harp. He will play when the evil spirit from God comes upon you, and you will feel better.’ So Saul said to his attendants, ‘Find someone who plays well and bring him to me.’ … Whenever the spirit from God came upon Saul, David would take his harp and play. Then relief would come to Saul; he would feel better, and the evil spirit would leave him." 1 Samuel 16:14-17, 23

This is why we see that the consistent pattern within the Holy Scriptures is that God, his Spirit, and/or his angels comfort and alleviate the fears of the people that they are sent to or speak with. They don’t demoralize or manhandle the recipients of revelation as we find in the case of Zawadi’s false prophet.

So much for Zawadi’s false analogy and smokescreens.

Zawadi claims that he understood my statement and that I was in fact "indirectly" asserting that the term book always means an inspired or revealed Scripture, which is not what I said. I said that Zawadi was wrong to assume that the term book in Q. 29:48 doesn’t mean an inspired text but to any writing, i.e. Muhammad hadn’t read or written any book whatsoever, not just an inspired Scripture. I demonstrated that, within the context of the Qur’an, specifically in respect to Q. 25:4-6 and 29:48 – the term book must be referring to an inspired text. I seriously doubt Zawadi will get it this time.

Zawadi will once again expose his inability to comprehend his opponent’s argument. He asserts that I am trying to dodge a bullet for denying that I made the claim that a person who recites the Qur’an must be reading from a book. He then quotes me as if he this will prove his case. I will highlight the parts he missed in order to further demonstrate why I say that Zawadi has a serious reading incomprehension:

Furthermore, didn't Zawadi read Q. 25:5 carefully which says that MUHAMMAD wrote down the forgeries that he claimed were revelations from God? Doesn't this therefore prove that the verbs iqra and yatlu can and do mean that Muhammad was actually reading from a book? After all, if MUHAMMAD "had it [i.e. the Qur’an] written down" then this actually substantiates my point that HE WASN’T MERELY RECITING the verses from memory but reading from a book.

Now here is what Zawadi said:

Secondly, even though the Qur'an was written down that doesn't mean that every time SOMEONE recites the Qur'an that means he is reciting it from the Qur'an itself. Today we have the Qur'an written down in billions of books, but you can still have SOMEONE reciting it from memory. Existence of the Qur'an in book form does not necessitate that recitation must be done from a book. This is very weak reasoning from Shamoun.

And now my response:

Nor did I ever claim that every time that A PERSON recites the Qur’an that this proves that they are reading from the book itself, so this is nothing more than a smokescreen. What I said was that all of the examples which we find in the Qur’an conclusively prove THAT MUHAMMAD was actually reading from a book which he had access to, and not simply reciting words given to him.

Does anyone see what Zawadi obviously missed? I was replying to Zawadi’s straw man assertion that just because
SOMEONE recites the Qur’an that doesn’t mean he is reading from a book, something I never denied. What I said was that the evidence shows that MUHAMMAD, not just anyone, was reciting from a book which he had access to. Hopefully, Zawadi now gets the point and stops humiliating himself time and time again.



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