Answering Islam - A Christian-Muslim dialog

The true religion and guidance of Abraham

By Sam Shamoun

In my previous post I showed how the Quran commanded Muhammad and mankind to follow the religion and guidance of Abraham. In this current article I am going to unveil what that religion and guidance happens to be according to God’s true Word, the Holy Bible.

Since the Quran claims to be a confirmation of the Holy Scriptures in the possession of the Jews and Christians of Muhammad’s time,

O Children of Israel, remember the favour I have bestowed upon you. Keep your covenant, and I will be true to Mine. Dread My power. Have faith in My revelations, which confirm your Scriptures, and do not be the first to deny them. Do not sell My revelations for a paltry price; fear Me. Do not confound truth with falsehood, nor knowingly conceal the truth. Attend to your prayers, render the alms levy, and kneel with those who kneel. Would you enjoin righteousness on men and forget it yourselves? Yet you read the Scriptures. Have you no sense? S. 2:40-44; source

And now that a Book confirming their own has come to them from God, they deny it, although they know it to be the truth and have long prayed for help against the unbelievers. God's curse be upon the infidels!… When they are told: 'Believe in what God has revealed,' they reply: 'We believe in what was revealed to us.' But they deny what has since been revealed, although it is the truth, corroborating their own scriptures. Say: 'Why did you kill the prophets of God, if you are true believers? S. 2:89, 91

Say: 'Whoever is an enemy of Gabriel' (who has by God's grace revealed to you the Koran as a guide and joyful tidings for the faithful, confirming previous scriptures). S. 2:97

And now that an apostle has come to them from God confirming their own Scriptures, some of those to whom the Scriptures were given cast off the Book of God over their backs as though they know nothing. S. 2:101

He has revealed to you the Book with the Truth, confirming the scriptures which preceded it; for He has already revealed the Torah and the Gospel for the guidance of mankind, and the distinction between right and wrong. Those that deny God's revelations shall be sternly punished; God is mighty and capable of revenge. S. 3:3-4; source

You to whom the Scriptures were given! Believe in that which We have revealed, confirming your own scriptures, before We obliterate your faces and turn them backward, or lay Our curse on you as We laid it on the Sabbath–breakers. What God ordains shall be accomplished. S. 4:47; source

This Koran could not have been devised by any but God. It confirms what was revealed before it and fully explains the Scriptures. It is beyond doubt from the Lord of the Worlds. S. 10:37; source

Yet before it the Book of Moses was revealed: a guide and a blessing. This Book confirms it. It is revealed in the Arabic tongue, to forewarn the wrongdoers and to give good tidings to the righteous… ‘Our people,' they said, 'we have just been listening to a scripture revealed since the time of Moses, confirming previous scriptures and pointing to the truth and to a straight path. S. 46:12, 30; source

And since the Jews and Christians are commanded to judge in accordance with their sacred writings,

But how will they come to you for judgement when they already have the Torah which enshrines God's own judgement? Soon after, they will turn their backs: they are no true believers. We have revealed the Torah, in which there is guidance and light. By it the prophets who submitted to God judged the Jews, and so did the rabbis and the divines, according to God's Book which had been committed to their keeping and to which they themselves were witnesses. Have no fear of man; fear Me, and do not sell My revelations for a paltry sum. Unbelievers are those who do not judge according to God's revelations. We decreed for them a life for a life, an eye for an eye, a nose for a nose, an ear for an ear, a tooth for a tooth, and a wound for a wound. But if a man charitably forbears from retaliation, his remission shall atone for him. Transgressors are those that do not judge according to God's revelations. After them We sent forth Jesus, son of Mary, confirming the Torah already revealed, and gave him the Gospel, in which there is guidance and light, corroborating what was revealed before it in the Torah: a guide and an admonition to the righteous. Therefore let those who follow the Gospel judge according to what God has revealed therein. Evil–doers are those that do not judge according to God's revelations. And to you We have revealed the Book with the truth. It confirms the Scriptures which came before it and stands as a guardian over them. Therefore give judgement among men according to God's revelations, and do not yield to their whims or swerve from the truth made known to you. We have ordained a law and assigned a path for each of you. Had God pleased, He could have made of you one community: but it is His wish to prove you by that which He has bestowed upon you. Vie with each other in good works, for to God shall you all return and He will resolve your differences for you. S. 5:43-48

And since the books that the Jews and Christians possessed at Muhammad’s time are identical to what we have in our Bibles today, this means that we can consult the Holy Bible to test and judge Muhammad’s assertions in the Quran.

With that said let us turn to the Holy Scriptures to see what they have to say concerning the religion and guidance of Abraham:

“Then answered the Jews, and said unto him, Say we not well that thou art a Samaritan, and hast a devil? Jesus answered, I have not a devil; but I honour my Father, and ye do dishonour me. And I seek not mine own glory: there is one that seeketh and judgeth. Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death. Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death. Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself? Jesus answered, If I honour myself, my honour is nothing: it is my Father that honoureth me; of whom ye say, that he is your God: yet ye have not known him; but I know him: and if I should say, I know him not, I shall be a liar like unto you: but I know him, and keep his saying. Your father Abraham rejoiced to see MY DAY: and he saw it, and was glad. Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am. Then took they up stones to cast at him: but Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple, going through the midst of them, and so passed by.” John 8:48-59

Here we have it on the authority of the Lord Jesus himself that Abraham looked to Jesus for salvation. The fact that Abraham rejoiced to see the day of Christ, and saw it, affirms that God had revealed to Abraham beforehand that the Messiah would come to save and justify him.(1)

In other words, Abraham knew by way of revelation that God was going to send the Messiah to save him and all his descendants. Therefore, Abraham believed in Christ whom he knew would eventually come since he trusted God who promised to send his Anointed One to save his people and the whole inhabited earth.

Abraham wasn’t the only saint or prophet who trusted in and looked to the Messiah for his/her salvation. According to Christ himself, all of God’s inspired prophets and emissaries longed for the day when God’s Anointed Savior would arrive to redeem them from their sins and grant them everlasting life:

“But blessed are your eyes, for they see: and your ears, for they hear. For verily I say unto you, That many prophets and righteous men have desired to see those things which ye see, and have not seen them; and to hear those things which ye hear, and have not heard them.” Matthew 13:16-17 – cf. Luke 10:23-24

“Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life… Do not think that I will accuse you to the Father: there is one that accuseth you, even Moses, in whom ye trust. For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed me: for he wrote of me. But if ye believe not his writings, how shall ye believe my words?” John 5:39-40, 45-47

Jesus further confirmed that God made known to and through Moses and the prophets that the Messiah would suffer and die for the sins of God’s people, and then be raised and taken into his heavenly glory:

“Then he took unto him the twelve, and said unto them, Behold, we go up to Jerusalem, and all things that are written by the prophets concerning the Son of man shall be accomplished. For he shall be delivered unto the Gentiles, and shall be mocked, and spitefully entreated, and spitted on: and they shall scourge him, and put him to death: and the third day he shall rise again. And they understood none of these things: and this saying was hid from them, neither knew they the things which were spoken.” Luke 18:31-34 – cf. Matthew 16:21; 17:22-23; 20:17-19; Mark 8:31-32; 9:30-31; 10:32-34

“Then he said unto them, O fools, and slow of heart to believe all that the prophets have spoken: ought not Christ to have suffered these things, and to enter into his glory? And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.” Luke 24:25-27

“And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures, and said unto them, Thus it is written, and thus it behoved Christ to suffer, and to rise from the dead the third day: and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.” Luke 24:44-47 – cf. Acts 3:19-26; 10:36-43; 13:17-39; 26:22-23; Romans 1:1-4, 16-17; 3:21-31; 16:25-26; 1 Corinthians 15:1-9; 1 Peter 1:10-12

As if this weren’t astonishing enough, Christ went as far as to proclaim that the Holy Spirit inspired and moved king David to confess and worship the Messiah Jesus as his sovereign Lord whom God exalts to heaven in order to reign alongside of him over all creation!(2)

“While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, 42 saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he? They say unto him, The Son of David. He saith unto them, How then doth David in spirit call him Lord, saying, The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou on my right hand, till I make thine enemies thy footstool? If David then call him Lord, how is he his son? And no man was able to answer him a word, neither durst any man from that day forth ask him any more questions.” Matthew 22:41-46 – cf. Luke 20:41-44; Mark 12:35-37; Acts 2:34-35

Hence, David was saved and justified in the same way that believers who come after Christ are redeemed from their sins, namely, by confessing that Jesus Christ is the Lord whom God raised from the dead!

that if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.” Romans 10:9-10 

In light of this, the Muslim scripture is simply in error when it says that Abraham was not a Christian, or that the Gospel wasn’t revealed to him,

People of the Book, why do you argue about Abraham when both the Torah and the Gospel were not revealed till after him? Have you no sense? Indeed, you have argued about things of which you have some knowledge. Must you now argue about that of which you know nothing at all? God knows, but you know not. Abraham was neither Jew nor Christian. He was an upright man, one who submitted to God. He was no idolater. S. 3:65-67

Since the very Scriptures that the Quran came to confirm are emphatically clear that Abraham, and all the prophets after him, were all Christians who had the Gospel, the Good News, of the coming of the Lord Jesus preached to them:

“Having therefore obtained help of God, I continue unto this day, witnessing both to small and great, saying none other things than those which the prophets and Moses did say should come: that Christ should suffer, and that he should be the first that should rise from the dead, and should shew light unto the people, and to the Gentiles… Then Agrippa said unto Paul, Almost thou persuadest me to be a Christian. And Paul said, I would to God, that not only thou, but also all that hear me this day, were both almost, and altogether such as I am, except these bonds.” Acts 26:22-23, 28-29

“He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith? Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness. Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham. And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed. So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham… Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us: for it is written, Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree: that the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles THROUGH JESUS CHRIST; that we might receive the promise of the Spirit through faith… Now to Abraham and his seed were the promises made. He saith not, And to seeds, as of many; but as of one, And to thy seed, WHICH IS CHRIST. And this I say, that the covenant, that was confirmed before of God in Christ, the law, which was four hundred and thirty years after, cannot disannul, that it should make the promise of none effect… But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise BY FAITH OF JESUS CHRIST might be given to them that believe… Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster. For ye are all the children of God BY FAITH IN CHRIST JESUS. For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. And if ye be Christ’s, then are ye Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.” Galatians 3:5-9, 13-14, 16-17, 22, 24-29

“Let us therefore fear, lest, a promise being left us of entering into his rest, any of you should seem to come short of it. For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard it.” Hebrews 4:1-2

“Concerning this salvation, the prophets who prophesied of the grace that should come to you have inquired and searched diligently, seeking the events and time THE SPIRIT OF CHRIST, WHO WAS WITHIN THEM, signified when He foretold the sufferings of Christ and the glories to follow. It was revealed to them that they were not serving themselves but you, concerning the things which are now reported to you by those who have preached the gospel to you through the Holy Spirit, who was sent from heaven—things into which the angels desire to look.” 1 Peter 1:10-12 Modern English Version (MEV)

“Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: but rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy. If ye be reproached for the name of Christ, happy are ye; for the spirit of glory and of God resteth upon you: on their part he is evil spoken of, but on your part he is glorified. But let none of you suffer as a murderer, or as a thief, or as an evildoer, or as a busybody in other men’s matters. Yet if any man suffer as a Christian, let him not be ashamed; but let him glorify God on this behalf.” 1 Peter 4:12-16

So what was the true religion of Abraham? What was the guidance that God showed him? It was none other than Christianity, the belief in Jesus Christ and the redemption that he was to bring to the whole world. This is the only true religion, the only guidance, that the one true God has given for the salvation of mankind:

“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

“And it came to pass on the morrow, that their rulers, and elders, and scribes, and Annas the high priest, and Caiaphas, and John, and Alexander, and as many as were of the kindred of the high priest, were gathered together at Jerusalem. And when they had set them in the midst, they asked, By what power, or by what name, have ye done this? Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel, if we this day be examined of the good deed done to the impotent man, by what means he is made whole; be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even BY HIM doth this man stand here before you whole. This is the stone which was set at nought of you builders, which is become the head of the corner. Neither is there salvation IN ANY OTHER: for there is NONE OTHER NAME under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus. And beholding the man which was healed standing with them, they could say nothing against it.” Acts 4:5-14

This means that Muslims need to follow the guidance revealed to Abraham by turning away from Islam and embrace Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, just as Abraham did. If they refuse to follow Abraham’s religion then they will remain in their sins and will therefore suffer God’s righteous wrath for rejecting God’s gracious provision of salvation:

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God… He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.” John 3:16-18, 36

“For they themselves shew of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead, even Jesus, which delivered us from the wrath to come.” 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10

“For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.” 1 Thessalonians 5:9-10

“which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of God, that ye may be counted worthy of the kingdom of God, for which ye also suffer: seeing it is a righteous thing with God to recompense tribulation to them that trouble you; and to you who are troubled rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, in flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power; when he shall come to be glorified in his saints, and to be admired in all them that believe (because our testimony among you was believed) in that day.” 2 Thessalonians 1:5-10

Hopefully they will make the right choice just as Abraham and all the true believers did:

“And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.” Revelation 22:17

Unless noted otherwise, quranic references taken from the N. J. Dawood version.

Unless noted otherwise, biblical citations taken from the Authorized King James Version (AV) of the Holy Bible.


(1) Not only does our Lord say that Abraham saw his day, he also confirms that he actually saw Abraham, which astonished the Jews since they couldn’t understand how Jesus could have met their ancestor seeing that the latter had been dead for nearly two thousand years. Jesus then explained that the reason why he was able to see their forefather is because, unlike Abraham who came into being at a specific moment in time, Christ has always existed since he is no mere human being, but is the eternal God who chose to become flesh. 

Now this implies that all those times and places in the Hebrew Bible where Abraham saw God face to face in visible form, that it was none other than the Lord Jesus Christ himself in his prehuman existence whom the patriarch was actually seeing. For more on this topic please read the following article:

Who did Abraham See?

(2) David’s inspired proclamation regarding his Lord the Messiah being seated at God’s right hand clearly indicates that he had been informed by the Holy Spirit that Jesus Christ would from heaven itself, a point that can be easily proven from what David wrote elsewhere in the Psalms:

“He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.” Psalm 2:4

“The Lord is in his holy temple, the Lord’s throne is in heaven: his eyes behold, his eyelids try, the children of men.” Psalm 11:4

The Lord hath prepared his throne in the heavens; and his kingdom ruleth over all.” Psalm 103:19

Since Jehovah rules from his throne in heaven the Messiah must therefore be ruling from God’s very own heavenly throne. After all, to be seated at God’s heavenly right hand means that the Messiah is sitting together with God on the same divine throne. There is simply no way around this fact.