Rebuttal to Sam Shamoun's Article "Ibn Qayyim al-Jawziyyah and the Text of the Torah: Further exposing the shoddy scholarship of a Muslim Apologist"

By

Bassam Zawadi

 

Sam Shamoun's article could be located here.

I always knew that Sam Shamoun provides nothing more than cheap arguments that appear to be strong to ignoramuses, but he has definitely sunk low this time. His habit of stalking me on the internet just makes him out to look bad just like in the past [1].

There is no need at all for me to provide a complete refutation to Shamoun's article. It is enough for one to read the email that I sent Dr. Waleed immediately after his post (and to which I received no response to my arguments). I am presenting my email without any changes or editions (so please mind any grammatical mistakes):

 

From:

BASSAM ZAWADI (b_zawadi@hotmail.com)

Sent:

Mon 5/26/08 11:52 AM

To:

waleedaou@yahoo.com

 

Assalamu Alaykum,

Dear Dr. Basyouni. I love you for the sake of Allah. My name is Bassam Zawadi, the owner of www.call-to-monotheism.com This is in regards to your post over here http://forums.almaghrib.org/showthread.php?s=20c124f85dcf229ab4caa42df4809f47&p=258724

 

I have some comments to make:

 

You said:

 

Did Al-Bukhaaree say that the Tahreef happened to the meaning and not the text? Yes, this is well known and you can see that in Saheeh al-Bukhaaree in the Book of Tawheed 97, chapter 55 and read what Ibn Hajar comments.

 

I believe that you are referring to this statement:

 

يزيلون وليس أحد يزيل لفظ كتاب etc.

  

This is actually a statement attributes to Ibn Abbass.

However, Ibn Hajar comments:

I did not find it with continuous chain of reporters (mawsoul) on authority of Ibn 'Abbaas in spite of the fact that what is said before it is from his words as well as that is after it....

Many of our folks (ashabena) have explicitly declared that the Torah and the Gospel has been corrupted (hurrifat) in contradiction with what Al-Bukhari mentions here [on authority of Ibn 'Abbaas] (Ibn Hajar Al Asqalani, Fath-ul-Bari fe Sharh Sahih-el-Bukhari, Book of "Oneness of God", Chapter 55, Number 6223)

 

Also, it contradicts the official position of Ibn Abbass who believed in the textual corruption of the previous scripturs.

Thirdly, Ibn Abbaas's statement could be reinterpreted in order to be reconciled with the other statements that he has made. And that is that Ibn Abbaas intended to say that they changed what was in their hands of the text which was with them, but they could not change the original true text which is with Allah on al-Lawh al-Mahfudh (preserved tablet) since the speech of Allah is eternal and no one can ever make it go lost completely and removing the words from the books here on earth does not mean that God's words have become totally lost but lost here on earth only. 
 

Ibn Kathir says in his commentary of Surah 85, Verse 22...
 

(Nay! This is a Glorious Qur'an.) meaning, magnificent and noble.

(In Al-Lawh Al-Mahfuz!) meaning, among the most high gathering, guarded from any increase, decrease, distortion, or change. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Source)


Here we see that the Qur'an is also preserved in the Preserved Tablet from being corrupted and this strongly raises the possibility that this is what Ibn Abbaas was referring to when he made (assuming that he did) that statement. His intention was to say that the speech of God is in the Preserved Tablet (including the original Torah and Gospel) and cannot be changed. 

 

You also quoted Ibnul Qayyim who stated that this was the opinion of Razi. However, when I read the commentary of Razi I don't get this impression, since he said.

  

{ يُحَرّفُونَ ٱلْكَلِمَ عَن مَّوٰضِعِهِ } معناه: أنهم يذكرون التأويلات الفاسدة لتلك النصوص، وليس فيه بيان أنهم يخرجون تلك اللفظة من الكتاب. وأما الآية المذكورة في سورة المائدة، فهي دالة على أنهم جمعوا بين الأمرين، فكانوا يذكرون التأويلات الفاسدة، وكانوا يخرجون اللفظ أيضا من الكتاب، فقوله: { يُحَرّفُونَ ٱلْكَلِمَ } إشارة إلى التأويل الباطل وقوله: { مِن بَعْدِ مَوٰضِعِهِ } إشارة إلى إخراجه عن الكتاب

 

In regards to Allah's statement "They pervert the words from their proper places" (Surah 4:46), it means that they mention the corrupted interpretations for those verses, and there is no proof that they take the actual statements out of the book.

And as for the verse in Surah 5:41, this is evidence that they have combined between the two (textual corruption and misinterpreting the text), they used to mention their corrupted interpretations, and they also used to remove the statements from the book. Allah's statement "They pervert words" indicates misinterpreting the text and Allah's statement "after their being put in their right places" indicates that the statements were removed from the book. (Fakhar ad-Din ar-Razi, Tafsir Al Kabir, Commentary on Surah 4:46, Source)


 
You said:
 
Such a person cannot be familiar with the science of hadeeth, and that is very dangerous to have such attitude.
 
Akhi, that wasn't the only reason I gave, nor wasn't it my main argument. It was just supportive. My main argument was that a narrator was in doubt and condemned by many scholars.
 
 

Brother Bassam,
www.call-to-monotheism.com

 

 

So there you go, we challenge Shamoun to refute my email to Dr. Waleed.

As for Shamoun's cheap comments at the end:

Moreover, the quotation from Ibn al-Qayyim demonstrates Zawadi's willingness to conceal and/or pervert the evidence in order to prove his erroneous assertion that the authentic sources of Islam do not confirm and uphold the textual veracity and authority of the Holy Bible. He is more interested in scoring cheap debate points and winning an argument at any cost, even if this means that he has to conceal and distort what his own scholars and references say. This is not an indication of a person who is sincerely interested in discovering the truth.

 

This is just hilarious coming from Shamoun.

First of all, the reason why I "concealed this evidence" is because it is not evidence as one can see in my response to Dr. Waleed.

Secondly, I was honest enough in my original article to let people like Shamoun (who never would have figured out on his own) know that Sheikh Albani authenticated the narration. However, I continued to argue that at the end it was doubtful.

Thirdly, how dare Shamoun argue that I am not interested in discovering truth? Surely, he must have read my article Evidence That Islam Teaches That There Was Textual Corruption of The Christian and Jewish Scriptures word by word very carefully and knows very well that I provided evidence that Imam Razi believed in the textual corruption of the Bible. So why didn't he say "Dr. Waleed and Ibnul Qayyim are wrong and Bassam has proven that to be the case."?

Furthermore, why doesn't Shamoun retract his ludricious statements from his articles and condemn the statements of his colleagues when they say that the early Muslims believed in the preservation of the Bible (see here, here and the hilarious statement that Ibn Taymmiyah viewed the Bible as preserved here), despite the fact that I have clearly proven that the views of the early Muslims were to the contrary (see here) and that Shamoun still cannot provide me a single authentic statement from any of the well respected scholars from the Salaf backed up with authentic evidence that would agree with his position?

I know! Shamoun is not a truth seeker. That is why. If he can discover any Muslim scholar that states that the Bible is preserved (even though this goes against the Salaf, majority of scholars and not backed up by evidence) he will take a shot at it, even if it requires taking the scholar's statements out of context (as he and his missionary friends have done with scholars like Imam Tabari and Ibn Abbass)

Also, Shamoun said:

What makes this citation rather interesting is that not only does it provide support for the authenticity of the narration from Abu Dawud, but it further documents how many Muslim scholars used this very report to prove that the text of the Torah wasn't corrupt but remained intact.

Apparently he is referring to Ibnul Qayyim's statement:

The scholars said: if the Torah was corrupted he would not have placed it on the pillow and he would not have said: I believe in you and in the one who revealed you. This group of scholars also said:

First of all, we want Shamoun to name these scholars that Ibnul Qayyim is referring to and ensure us that he didn't mistakenly misrepresent their position as he did with Imam Razi's.

Secondly, we want Shamoun to prove to us that these same scholars believe that the Old Testament is the true Torah. Just because they believed that the true Torah was there at the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him) that doesn't mean that they were referring to the Old Testament of the Christians. When one reads certain narrations and hadiths, one gets the impression that the true Torah at the time of the Prophet (only assuming that it was actually there in written form) was not the Old Testament.

Narrated by Al Fultaan ibn A'asim:

 

 أتشهد أني رسول الله ؟ ، قال : لا ، قال : أتقرأ التوراة ؟ ، قال : نعم ، قال : والإنجيل ؟ ، قال : نعم ، قال : والقرآن ؟ ، قال : والذي نفسي بيده لو أشاء لقرأته ، قال : ثم نشده قال : [ ما ] تجدني في التوراة والإنجيل ؟ . قال : نجد مثلك ومثل أمتك ومخرجك ، وكنا نرجو أن تكون فينا ، فلما خرجت تخوفنا أن تكون أنت ، فنظرنا فإذا ليس أنت هو ، قال : ولم ذاك ؟ ، قال : إن معه من أمته سبعين ألفا ليس عليهم حساب ولا عقاب ، وإنما معك نفر يسير ؟ قال : والذي نفسي بيده لأنا هو ، وإنها لأمتي ، وإنهم لأكثر من سبعين ألفا ، وسبعين ألفا ، وسبعين ألفا

 

Do you bear witness that I am the Messenger of Allah? He said: No. The Prophet peace be upon him said: Do you read the Torah? He replied back: Yes. Then the Prophet peace be upon him asked: and the Gospel? The man replied: Yes. The Prophet peace be upon him then asked: The Qur'an? The man replied back: No. The Prophet peace be upon him replied back: By He Whose Hand my soul lies, if I willed I would read it. Then the Prophet peace be upon him pulled the man and asked: Don't you find me in the Torah and Gospel? The man replied back and said: We find someone who is similar to you and your Ummah (community) and from the place where you were brought up and we were hoping that you would be from amongst us. When you rose up (as a Prophet) we were afraid that it would be you. However, we looked and saw that it wasn't you. The Prophet peace be upon him replied back asking: Why is that? The man said: From him will be 70,000 of his followers from his community who will have no judgment passed on them nor punishment but you have a simple number of men following you. The Prophet peace be upon him replied back: By He Whose Hand my soul lies it is me and it is referring to my Ummah (community). And they are more than 70 thousand, 70 thousand, 70 thousand. (This hadith has been declared authentic by Sheikh Albani in Saheeh Al Muwaarid, page or hadith no. 1765)  

 

Notice how the man informed the Prophet (peace be upon him) that one of the signs of the Prophet to come according to the Torah or Gospel is that the Prophet will have 70,000 followers who will enter paradise with no judgment passed on them. Where do we see this in today's Torah or Gospel? The answer is: Nowhere! Thus, indicating that it has been removed from the text, which in turn implies textual corruption.  

Abdullah ibn Mas'ud is reported to have said:

 

 عن عبد الله بن مسعود رضي الله عنه قال يؤتى الرجل في قبره فيؤتى رجلاه فتقول ليس لكم على ما قبلي سبيل كان يقرأ سورة الملك ثم يؤتى من قبل صدره أو قال بطنه فيقول ليس لكم على ما قبلي سبيل كان يقرأ سورة الملك ثم يؤتي من قبل رأسه فيقول ليس لكم على ما قبلي سبيل كان يقرأ في سورة الملك فهي المانعة تمنع عذاب القبر وهي في التوراة سورة الملك من قرأها في ليلة فقد أكثر وأطيب الراوي

 

"While a person is in his grave, The first place to start with punishment is his feet yet his feet prevent this punishment from happening by saying: "You cannot punish me in anyway as this man always recited Sura Al-Mulk". Thus, it (the punishment) approaches him from his chest (stomach) side yet his chest prevents the punishments from happening by saying: "You cannot harm or punish me as this man always recited Sura Al-Mulk." Then the punishment of the grave turns to his head but his head prevents this punishment from happening and says: "You cannot punish me because this man always recited Sura Al-Mulk." This Sura is indeed called the preventer that prevents the occurrence of punishment. It is stated in Torah that whoever recites Surah Al Mulk at night, he would be doing very good acts. (Hadith scholar, Al Munthiri declares this narration to be saheeh (authentic) or hasan (good) in his book Al Targheeb Wal Tarheeb, Volume 2, p. 320. Sheikh Albani also affirms the authenticity of this narration in Saheeh Al Targheeb, hadith no. 1475)

 

Here Abdullah ibn Mas'ud is saying that the Torah says that whoever recites Sura Al Mulk (Surah 67), it will protect him from the punishment of the grave. I and everyone reading this article know very well that nowhere is this found in today's Torah. It means that it was removed, thus indicating textual corruption. 

Let us read the following narration:

 

حدثنا يحيى بن موسى البلخي ثنا أبو أسامة قال مجالد أخبرنا عن عامر عن جابر بن عبد الله قال: جاءت اليهود برجل وامرأة منهم زنيا فقال ائتوني بأعلم رجلين منكم فأتوه بابني صوريا فنشدهما كيف تجدان أمر هذين في التوراة قالا نجد في التوراة إذا شهد أربعة أنهم رأوا ذكره في فرجها مثل الميل في المكحلة رجما قال فما يمنعكما أن ترجموهما قالا ذهب سلطاننا فكرهنا القتل فدعا رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم بالشهود فجاؤوا بأربعة فشهدوا أنهم رأوا ذكره في فرجها مثل الميل في المكحلة فأمر رسول الله صلى الله عليه وسلم برجمهما       

 

The Jews brought [to the Prophet peace be upon him] a man and a woman among them who committed adultery. The Prophet peace be upon him said, "Bring the two most knowledgeable men from amongst you."  The Jews brought the two sons of Suriyya, and the Prophet peace be upon him asked them, "What punishment do you find in the Torah regarding these two?" They said, "In the Torah, we find that if four men testify that they saw his male organ in her womb, similar to when the eyeliner is inserted inside the eyeliner container; in this case they are stoned."  The Prophet peace be upon him said, "What made you stop stoning?" They said, "Our kingship (meaning Jewish) was taken from us and we hated killing." The Messenger of Allah asked for four witnesses and they brought four men who testified that they saw his penis in her womb like the eyeliner is inserted in the eyeliner container. The Messenger of Allah ordered that the two [adulterers] are stoned. (Sunan Abu Dawud, Hadith no. 3862, Source. Sheikh Albani declared this hadith authentic in Sunan Abu Dawud, hadith no.4452)

 

Indeed, we do find in the Old Testament today that adulterers are to be killed (Leviticus 20:10). But nowhere do we find anything about four witnesses (interestingly Islam teaches this) or any eyeliner.

This is indirect proof that this section of the Torah has been distorted with.

The following narration tells us about a conversation that Umar ibn Al Khattab once had with a Jew:

 

ان مسلما ويهوديا اختصما إلى عمر رضى الله عنه فرأى الحق لليهودي فقضى له عمر به فقال له اليهودي والله لقد قضيت بالحق فضربه عمر بالدرة قال وما يدريك فقال اليهودي والله إنا نجد في التوراة ليس قاضي يقضي بالحق إلا كان عن يمينه ملك وعن شماله ملك يسددانه ويوفقانه للحق ما دام مع الحق عرجا وتركاه

 

Sa'eed ibn Al Museeb narrated that it happened that a Muslim and a Jew had a dispute so they went to Umar bin Al-Khattab to judge between them. Umar bin Al-khattab ruled in favor for the Jew, which upon the Jew said: "I swear by Allah, you have judged with the Truth". Umar bin Al-khattab hit the man with a stick that has a small ball on the top of it when he heard him saying that. Then Umar bin Al-khattab asked the Jew, "How do you know that I judged with the truth?" The Jew replied, "We find in the Torah that whoever judges according to the truth two angels from his right and left sides assist him to find the truth. Yet, if he went astray from the truth, they will leave him. (Al Munzhiri declared this narration to be authentic in Al Targheeb Wal Tarheeb, Volume 3, p. 188)

 

The Jew spoke about the two angels on the sides of the human being. Where is this to be found in today's Torah? It is not. This means it was removed. Thus indicating textual corruption.  

The following narration says the story of how Abdullah ibn Salam accepted Islam:

 

Saheeh Bukhari

 

Volume 6, Book 60, Number 7:


'Abdullah bin Salam heard the news of the arrival of Allah's Apostle (at Medina) while he was on a farm collecting its fruits. So he came to the Prophet and said, 'I will ask you about three things which nobody knows unless he be a prophet. Firstly, what is the first portent of the Hour? What is the first meal of the people of Paradise? And what makes a baby look like its father or mother?'. The Prophet said, 'Just now Gabriel has informed me about that.'

 

'Abdullah said, 'Gabriel?' The Prophet said, 'Yes.' 'Abdullah said, 'He, among the angels is the enemy of the Jews.' On that the Prophet recited this Holy Verse:-- 'Whoever is an enemy to Gabriel (let him die in his fury!) for he has brought it (i.e. Qur'an) down to your heart by Allah's permission.' (2.97) Then he added, 'As for the first portent of the Hour, it will be a fire that will collect the people from the East to West. And as for the first meal of the people of Paradise, it will be the caudite (i.e. extra) lobe of the fish liver. And if a man's discharge proceeded that of the woman, then the child resembles the father, and if the woman's discharge proceeded that of the man, then the child resembles the mother.'  

 

Now Abdullah ibn Salam was learned of the Torah and was convinced of the Prophethood of Muhammad (peace be upon him) after receiving the answers to those questions. Surely, Abdullah ibn Salam would only have known this from the Torah since he did not follow any other divine book. However, we don't find the answers that the Prophet (peace be upon him) gave to Abdullah ibn Salam in the Bible today. Therefore, it must have been removed, thus indicating textual corruption.

 

So here we saw several examples of what Muslims back in the Prophet's (peace be upon him) time would refer to as "Torah" and it wasn't the Old Testament.

So yes just because scholars believed that the Torah was around at the Prophet's time, that doesn't mean that they were talking about the Old Testament.

Shamoun might reply back and say that manuscript evidence shows that the Old Testament was present with the Jews at the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him). However, this response is not good enough. For this only proves that there were Jews that appealed to the Old Testament at that time, but not necessarily all of them. Surely these Muslims were getting these Torah verses from somewhere and we know for sure that it wasn't the Old Testament (unless the Old Testament got corrupted later, but we don't favor this position).

Also, it is possible that they could have received this information by oral traditions from the minority of righteous believers that knew the original contents of the Torah even though that they didn't have it with them in textual form. This is a possibility. 

 

So much for Shamoun's once again utter failure to prove that Islam endorses his corrupted Bible.

 

Notes:

1) Like for example when he falsely accused me of making up a story and plagiarizing it from somebody else (see here). Or when he falsely accused me of plagiarizing from Muslims in a forum even though I know perfectly well that he is already stalking me on the internet and when I even acknowledge the help I received under the subject headings of the article (see here). Or when he makes himself the laughing stock of the Muslims he falsely accused me of plagiarizing from (see here).

 

Appendix

 

Shamoun's stubbornness of course won't allow him to shut up after he has been refuted. Thus, unfortunately he will continue to speak nonsense.

 

Shamoun said:

 

Ibn al-Qayyim may have realized that, even though these are the words of Ibn Abbas, al-Bukhari must have agreed with this claim and therefore adopted it as his very own position; otherwise he wouldn't have referenced it. At the very least, we would expect al-Bukhari to have added a comment that his own conviction is different from that of Ibn Abbas.

 

That is possible, thus where is Bukhari's statement? Secondly, I have proven that this statement from Ibn Abbass is weak already here. So even if Bukhari based his opinion on that narration, then that only means that Bukhari is wrong as well and you would only be committing the fallacy of appeal to authority and not providing any substantially threatening argument to my position.

 

Shamoun then belches:

 

Zawadi then argues that this narration contradicts what Ibn Abbas supposedly said elsewhere concerning the alleged corruption of the Holy Bible, all of which have been thoroughly refuted here (1, 2).

 

Last I remember I got the last word and destroyed your arguments here.

 

Shamoun then states:

Zawadi thinks that his readers are naïve enough to actually believe that the previous Scriptures contained a reference or allusion to Surah al-Mulk, despite the fact that the names of these Surahs do not even appear in the Quran but are derived from later tradition, and further expects us to accept that the Torah initially contained an Islamic injunction which only came centuries after the time of Lord Jesus Christ!

First of all, the name "al Mulk" is found in the authentic hadith, which is a source of religious authority for Muslims. So it is not important if it is not found in the Qur'an.

 

Secondly, the narration does not say that the Arabic name "Al Mulk" was used in the Torah back in those days. It only alludes to the Surah. The Qur'an says that the Torah says "so and so" and the Qur'an is in the Arabic language. However, we know that the Torah wasn't in Arabic. So it is only a translation. Perhaps the name "Al Mulk" wasn't used even in the Torah's language and some other name was given, but the narration alludes to Surah Al Mulk being referred to in the original inspired Torah.

 

Shamoun in the face of defeat then says:

 

It is evident that certain Muslims made up reports where they claim that the previous Scriptures contained these specific verses in order to provide substantiation for a particular view. However, instead of substantiating their case for Islam, their blatant lies and forgeries expose their shameless manipulation of the previous Scriptures for their own ends thereby demonstrating that Muslim have no qualms and will not hesitate to spread their own religion by deceptive means.

 

Ha! Talk about DEBATE OVER! Notice the absurd response:

 

It is evident that certain Muslims made up reports where they claim that the previous Scriptures contained these specific verses in order to provide substantiation for a particular view

 

This ladies and gentlemen is Shamoun admitting that he has been defeated. Notice that we are not debating whether Islam's claim about the Torah and Gospel being textually corrupted is true or not. We are debating whether Islam claims that the Torah and Gospel have been textually corrupted or not.

 

Islam derives religious authority from the Qur'an, authentic Prophetic traditions and authentic traditions of the Salaf. I have provided authentic traditions from the Salaf that indirectly, yet clearly imply that the Torah and Gospel have been textually corrupted. This is evidence that Islam teaches that the Torah and Gospel have been textually corrupted. To prove whether this claim is true or not is for another debate. But as far as the debate whether Islam claims that the Torah and Gospel have been textually corrupted or not is concerned, DEBATE OVER. And Shamoun's pathetic response proves that for us.

 

Thanks Shamoun!

 

Shamoun then rants:

 

More importantly, in his haste to refute my argument Zawadi simply ignored and overlooked what the Quran says regarding Jesus confirming the Hebrew Scriptures in his hands and how this thoroughly exposes these distorted and fabricated hadiths.

 

First of all, I already wrote an article that explains what the "confirming" previous scriptures mean over here. The verses that speak about the Qur'an confirming the Torah and Gospel are trying to say that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) confirms the truth in them regarding his coming. That is all. It only proves that there is truth in these books and these verses do not in any way imply that the entire book is truth.

 

And since Shamoun likes Ibn Katheer so much, let us see whether he understood that a book confirming a previous book necessarily implies that the previous book is fully uncorrupted:

 

(but a confirmation of that which was before it) in reference to the previously revealed Divine Books, by which this Qur'an testifies to the true parts that remain in them and denies and refutes the forged parts that were added, changed and falsified by people. The Qur'an accepts or abrogates whatever Allah wills of these Books, (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Source)

 

Well of course not!

 

Let us see what he thought about the Old Testament:

 

This story in the Old Testament is a falsification and deception. (Ibn Kathir, The Stories of the Prophets, Chapter on Prophet Adam, Source)

 

Ibn Kathir also quotes well known Qur'anic commentator Ibn Jarir Al Tabari as saying...

Ibn Jarir said, "The Qur'an is trustworthy over the Books that preceded it. Therefore, whatever in these previous Books conforms to the Qur'an is true, and whatever disagrees with the Qur'an is false.'' (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Source, You can also see Al Tabari saying this himself in his commentary on Surah 2:41 over here)


Imam al-Tabari relates from the eminent Jurist Ibn Juraij (80-150 AH/699-767 CE) that if the people of the book quote something from their Bible that disagrees with the Qur'an then we reject it but if it agrees with the Qur'an then we accept it. (Source) Imam al-Bahgawi also quotes the opinion of Ibn Juraij in his commentary. (Tafsir Al Baghawi, 1/65) Abu al-Layth al-Samarqandi (d. 373 A.H.), the well known Hanafi scholar in his commentary of the Qur'an known as Bahr al-'Ulum on Surah 5, verse 48 says that the Qur'an acts as a judge over the previous scriptures. This indicates that the Qur'an judges whether something is true or false. (Source)

 

Similarly, when Jesus confirms the Torah he is only confirming its truth when it speaks about his coming. Even Shamoun's citations confirm this:

 

Ibn Kathir wrote the following concerning Q. 5:46:

<'Isa, son of Maryam, confirming the Tawrah that had come before him,> meaning, he believed in it AND RULED BY IT.

meaning, HE ADHERED TO THE TAWRAH, except for the few instances that clarified the truth where the Children of Israel differed. Allah states in another Ayah that 'Isa said to the Children of Israel. <.and to make lawful to you part of what was forbidden to you.>

So the scholars say that the Injil abrogated some of the rulings of the Tawrah. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Abridged - Surat An-Nisa, Verse 148 to the end of Surat Al-An'am [January 2000, first edition], Volume 3, Parts 6, 7 & 8, pp. 193-194; source; bold and capital emphasis ours)

And here are his comments in respect to Q. 61:6:

'Isa said, "The Tawrah conveyed the glad tidings of my coming, and my coming CONFIRMS THE TRUTH OF THE TAWRAH." (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Abridged, Volume 9, Surat Al-Jathiyah to the end of Surat Al-Munafiqun [September 2000, first edition], p. 617; source; bold and capital emphasis ours)

 

So here we see that Jesus (peace be upon him) confirmed the Torah by fulfilling its prophecy of him to come. He also confirmed it by upholding it and ruling by it. None of these necessitate that the full uncorrupted Torah was with Jesus in manuscript form. Jesus could have known the Torah in his heart as God was inspiring it to him.


As for Jesus saying the "Torah between my hands" this could either mean that Jesus did have a true inspired copy being distributed amongst the very few of the true followers or that Jesus by intention was speaking about the true inspired Torah, despite it being mixed with corrupted Old Testament verses. Whatever the case is, it is not clear that Jesus was affirming that the Old Testament is the pure and full preserved word of God. If our Qur'anic experts could understand the Qur'an confirming the Torah and Gospel does not necessarily imply that the Torah and Gospel are fully preserved, then I don't see why we should believe Jesus confirming the Torah implies that the Torah is fully preserved either.

 

Thus, Shamoun has not shown any definitive proof from Islamic sources of Jesus saying that the Old Testament as we have it today is fully inspired by God.

 

Shamoun then blabs:

 

Zawadi also tosses Ibn al-Qayyim under the bus by questioning whether this acclaimed student of Ibn Taymiyyah accurately quoted the scholars' opinions concerning the text of the Torah since Zawadi erroneously thinks that he misrepresented the position of ar-Razi. Lord willing we will be providing a full rebuttal to Zawadi's claim concerning ar-Razi's views of the Torah where we will show that, once again, Zawadi has either misunderstood or distorted what his very own sources say regarding this issue.   

 

I don't appreciate the "tosses Ibn al-Qayyim under the bus" comment anymore than Shamoun would if someone accused him of that for simply disagreeing with a scholar that he respects. I disagree with Ibnul Qayyim because the evidence compels me to.

 

Notice, that Ibnul Qayyim said:

 

A third group said: the Torah was altered slightly, however the majority of it is still intact, but the changes were MINOR, and among those who have chosen this view is our scholar [Ibn Tayimiyyah] in his book Al-Jawaab ("The Answer").

This is clearly not the case. How can Ibn Taymyyah have believed that the changes were minor when Ibn Taymiyyah said on page 146 of his book Al-Jawaab:

 

The Torah and the Bible that is present nowadays are not those that were presented by the Prophets Musa and Jesus.

 

That doesn't seem like a minor change to me. What does Shamoun suggest I do? Follow the evidence or blindly follow a scholar, despite how much I respect him? I have to follow the evidence because I am a truth seeker unlike Shamoun who likes to appeal to authority and ignore evidence.

 

Shamoun writes his article on Imam Razi's view here and just continued to commit the fallacy of appeal to authority by citing authorities who said that Imam Razi didn't believe in textual corruption, despite me providing evidence to the contrary.

 

One may think why a number of people think that this is Imam Razi's stance. I am not surprised since I personally thought the same way a few years ago as well. The reason why this could be is because (based on my extensive searching) Imam Razi apparently only thought that a few verses in the Qur'an taught textual corruption in comparison to other scholars. Thus, if someone were to take a quick glimpse and read of Imam Razi's commentary you would see in that almost all the verses that speak about the corruption of the previous scriptures he would interpret them to mean hermeneutical distortions and not textual. Thus, this would leave someone with the impression that he did not believe in textual corruption. However, as I have found in his commentary on Surah 4:46, he does believe that the Qur'an teaches textual corruption of the previous scriptures.

 

Shamoun replies back and says:

 

The most that ar-Razi's comments prove is that certain Jews during Muhammad's time had corrupted their particular copies of the Scriptures. Yet what do you do with the rest of the Jews and all the Christians who also had copies of the Hebrew Bible in their possession and would not agree with these Jews to change their sacred texts?

 

There is just no winning with Shamoun. Imam Razi made a general statement and he did not limit himself. As he did not limit his statement to those who did hermeneutical distortions, he did not limit his statement to those who did textual distortions either. 

 

I will not put anymore energy into the topic of Imam Razi's stance, since it has no substantial results at the end. Islam's stance does not depend upon Imam Razi, especially with him not being from the Salaf anyways.

 

If Shamoun wants to have Imam Razi on his side then good for him, he can have him. I still have the majority of, if not all of the Salaf on my side and that is what matters when it comes to whose understanding of Islam really carries weight.

 

Appendix 2

 

Stubborn Shamoun is at it again and has written another response here.

 

Shamoun said:

 

As the preceding references conclusively demonstrate Ibn Kathir didn't simply say that Jesus confirmed the Torah only in the sense of affirming the prophecies made concerning his advent. Ibn Kathir explicitly stated that Jesus memorized, believed in, affirmed and upheld the veracity of the Torah, as well as ruled by it!

 

How does this refute anything I said? It's possible that Jesus memorized, affirmed and upheld the truth found in the Torah. I have already explained this in another article:

 

As for Allah teaching Jesus (peace be upon him) the Torah and Jesus memorizing it, well Ibn Abbaas makes an interesting comment...

 

(And He will teach him the Scripture) the Scriptures of [past] prophets; as it is said: writing (and wisdom) the lawful and the prohibited; as it said this means: the wisdom of the prophets who preceded him, (and the Torah) in the womb of his mother (and the Gospel) after he came out of his mother's womb. (Ibn Abbaas, Tanwîr al-Miqbâs min Tafsîr Ibn 'Abbâs, Commentary on Surah 3:48, Source

 

 

Imam Al-Shawkani says in his commentary...

 

{ وَيُعَلّمُهُ ٱلْكِتَـٰبَ } قيل هو معطوف على { يُبَشّرُكِ }: أي: إن الله يبشرك وإنّ الله يعلمه،     

 

 

"and He will teach him the book". It is said that it is meant 'He will inform you". That is that Allah will inform him and teach him. (Shawkani, Fathul Qadeer, Commentary on Surah 3:48, Source)

 

 

Here we see that Jesus was taught the true Torah by revelation from God and not by him going to the allegedly textually pure Torah during his time. Also, why would God need to teach the Torah to Jesus if it was there for him to read and learn himself? 

 

Shamoun said:

The Muslim scripture uses this word in a positive sense to mean to believe in, to trust, to accept fully, just as the following examples from the Quran conclusively prove:

And the angels called to him, standing in the Sanctuary at worship, 'Lo, God gives thee good tidings of John, who shall confirm a Word of God (musaddiqan bikalimatin mina Allahi), a chief, and chaste, a Prophet, righteous.' S. 3:39

Shamoun has only mentioned one way of how the word confirm (saddaqa) could be used in the Qur'an, but not the second way, which is "'to make him/it truthful in its/his expectations or trust' just as I cited brother Moiz Amjad explaining over here.

 

Shamoun said:

 

And since we have manuscript copies of the Hebrew Scriptures that were written before Jesus' birth that are virtually identical to what we currently possess we can definitely say that the Torah that Jesus testified as being completely reliable and fully authoritative is the same OT that is found in our Bibles today. There is simply no way around this fact.

 

As I have already said:

 

Shamoun has no manuscript evidence to prove that the ENTIRE Old Testament in the possession of the Jews during the time of Jesus is exactly the same as the ENTIRE Old Testament that Christians have today.

 

The Dead Sea Scrolls only contain fragments of the Old Testament's books in exception to the book of Isaiah. It also doesn't include the book of Esther. (See Douglas Burrows/Liaison International, Encarta Concise Encyclopedia, cited here)

 

So Christians are only assuming that just because those fragmentary parts have been preserved then the whole Old Testament must have been as well. This is the fallacy of Hasty Generalization.

 

Also, let's not forget that it was highly possible for the Old Testament to be corrupted before the time of Jesus. The book Genesis is estimated to have been written around 1400 B.C and since the earliest copy that Christians have for Genesis (only fragments too, not the full version) is around 100 B.C then that still gives you more than a thousand year gap in which Biblical manuscripts are not accounted for. Thus, it was very possible that the Bible could have been corrupted at this time and there is no evidence to the contrary.

 

Shamoun says:

 

Zawadi is clearly perverting the meaning of words to make them say the opposite. In his mind "pointing out disagreements" is somehow taken to mean confirming. In that sense then the Holy Bible is also confirming the Qur'an by exposing everything that is wrong with it. This means that I must be confirming Bassam Zawadi's articles by refuting the errors contained in them. Our website should be called "Confirming Islam" since it is about showing the falsehood of Islam (besides acknowledging that even falsehood contains some truth, as does every forgery). When a witness is called in court and asked: Can you confirm the testimony of this person, he says: Yes, I confirm his word by saying he is wrong and it was different!!?? When Muslims speak about Science confirming the Quran they actually mean that Science exposes and corrects the multitude of errors contained in this book? Either the word means "to confirm" or it does not. But then it should not be translated that way. What all of this really is, is a trick of Muhammad of claiming agreement with earlier accepted revelation for the purpose of legitimizing himself.

 

Shamoun is appealing to false analogies. First, I have already explained that the word "confirm" could have two meanings. Secondly, it depends on how you understand the word "Torah" in the verse. If you define the word "Torah" as referring to the true revelation of Allah then it is valid to accept that confirmation in this context requires a confirmation of all the content. Torah could either refer to the true revelation sent by Allah or the Old Testament (depends on the context). If we assume that the only book that existed during the time of the Prophet Muhammad or Jesus (peace be upon them both) is the Old Testament and that the true revelation of Allah (i.e. real Torah) only exists scattered throughout the Old Testament then "confirmation of Torah" means that we are confirming the entire true Torah by distinguishing the truth from the falsehood found in the false Torah (i.e. Old Testament). Furthermore, as I have explained, the word "confirm" could also mean to confirm the truth of a promise made and since the original Torah predicted the coming of Muhammad (peace be upon him), the Qur'an is coming to confirm that promise and that is how the scholars of Islam understood it. Who is Shamoun to teach us Arabic rules of grammar and speech by appealing to the English language as examples! Shamoun continues to read the Qur'an using English translations and somehow thinks he could prove his case by appealing to grammatical rules or methods of speech found in the English language! Wow, poor Shamoun. I mean really, poor Shamoun.

 

Shamoun then repeats the argument that Imam Al Bukhari held this position because he cited the alleged Ibn Abbass statement it in his Sahih collection. First of all, Bukhari's inclusion of that statement doesn't necessitate that he believed in it. He placed it as a footnote and not as a full isnad. I have cited Ibn Hajar Al Asqalani as saying that the isnaad is not fully connected to Ibn Abbass. If the isnaad is not fully connected then how could Bukhari have believed in it when it doesn't even meet his own standards of hadith criticism? Bukhari was so strict in his hadith criticism that he even rejected hadeeth that would have been acceptable to have been included in Saheeh Muslim! So how could he have believed in this narration? Secondly, even if he did believe in this narration who said that he understood it the way Shamoun does? As I have explained in this article this narration could be understood in another way:

 

Thirdly, Ibn Abbaas's statement could be reinterpreted in order to be reconciled with the other statements that he has made. And that is that Ibn Abbaas intended to say that they changed what was in their hands of the text which was with them, but they could not change the original true text which is with Allah in al-Lawh al-Mahfudh (preserved tablet) since the speech of Allah is uncreated and no one can ever make it go lost completely and removing the words from the books here on earth does not mean that God's words have become totally lost but lost here on earth only. 

Ibn Kathir says in his commentary of Surah 85, Verse 22...

 (Nay! This is a Glorious Qur'an.) meaning, magnificent and noble.

(In Al-Lawh Al-Mahfuz!) meaning, among the most high gathering, guarded from any increase, decrease, distortion, or change. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Source)

 

Here we see that the Qur'an is also preserved in the Preserved Tablet from being corrupted and this strongly raises the possibility that this is what Ibn Abbaas was referring to when he made (assuming that he did) that statement. His intention was to say that the speech of God is in the Preserved Tablet (including the original Torah and Gospel) and cannot be changed. 

How does Shamoun know that Bukhari didn't understand the narration in this way?

 

Shamoun then refers to Ar-Razi, but notice what Ar-Razi said:

 

There is a difference of opinions regarding this matter among some of the respectable scholars. Some of these scholars said: the manuscript copies of the Torah were distributed everywhere and no one knows the exact number of these copies except Allah. It is IMPOSSIBLE to have a conspiracy to change or alter the word of God in all of these copies without missing any copy. Such a conspiracy will not be logical or possible. And when Allah told his messenger (Muhammad) to ask the Jews to bring their Torah and read it concerning the stoning command they were not able to change this command from their copies, that is why they covered up the stoning verse while they were reading it to the prophet. It was then when Abdullah Ibn Salam requested that they remove their hand so that the verse became clear. If they have changed or altered the Torah then this verse would have been one of the important verses to be altered by the Jews.

 

Ar-Razi wasn't appealing to any Qu'ranic texts or hadith to prove his point, but rather to his own logic. Furthermore, Ar-Razi was born over 500 years after the Prophet's (peace be upon him) death. What benefit does a late opinion have to Shamoun's case especially when that opinion is not based on Islamic scriptures?

 

Shamoun said:

 

Zawadi still doesn't get the point. He wants us to actually believe that the Torah contained a passage which says that stoning occurs only when four men testify that they saw a man's organ enter and penetrate a woman when such an injunction doesn't even appear in the Quran! Moreover, the consistent testimony of the Holy Bible is that a legal matter will be settled by the testimony of two or three witnesses, not four!

 

Again, we are not debating whether the Islamic claim is true or not, but are debating what the Islamic claim is!

 

Shamoun then rants on about Qur'anic variants (Shamoun presenting red herrings is nothing new), but we advise our readers to listen to the debate I had with Nabeel Qureshi on this topic over here.

 

In conclusion, Shamoun loses again and needs to face the fact that his favorite argument against Islam (i.e. the Qur'an confirms the Bible), which he adhered to for more than a decade has been demolished by me on my site and he just cannot stand that thought.

 

 

 

 

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