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From God, or from Man?

The scriptures of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam claim to contain God’s ultimate message to mankind detailing what people ought to believe and how they ought to live.

And roughly two billion people believe—at least to some extent—that at least one of them ultimately stems from God’s word.

But are these religions and their scriptures based on actual revelations from God to mankind, or are they really just the creations of human beings?

This is obviously a very basic and important question that many people have (privately or publicly) asked over the years.

But, to my knowledge, this is the only book that clearly and straightforwardly challenges these religions’ claims of divine origins, and concentrates on the most important and least speculative information pertaining to the main matter at hand.


Judaism
Creation Order
Flood
The Disappearance of Genesis 1-11
The Exodus
Lack of Historical Evidence
Peace and Violence
Other Gods
The Unchosen People

Moral Teachings
The Slave is His Property
Marry Thy Rapist
The Death Penalty
“What Have They Done?”
Kill


Christianity
The Virgin Birth
Execute the Miracle Worker
Lack of Historical Evidence
Is Jesus God?
This is the Law and the Prophets
Thou Shalt Not Change the Law
Is Jesus the Messiah?
Is the Gospel Completed Judaism?

Moral Teachings[78]
Give Everything
Thou Shalt Not Divorce
Do Not Resist Evil


Islam
People of the Book


Islam *? Continued Uncorrupted Christianity

As stated in the previous section, mainstream Islam teaches that most Jews and Christians have distorted and neglected parts of their authentic revelations, and that the Qur’an is a clarification, exposition, and continuation of those revelations.

However, it seems to me as if even *if this view is accepted, the relation between the Qur’an and Jewish and Christian teachings does not /seem to/ add up. In other words, there seem to be far too many thematic differences between the Qur’an and the Bible for the former to possibly be based on an original uncorrupted version of the latter.

For instance:

The Qur’an contains a main and oft-repeated theme of submission to God, whereas the Tanakh and New Testament hardly even make any specific mentions of such a concept.

The Qur’an offers a fully detailed description of an afterlife heaven and hell, whereas the Tanakh offers virtually no information whatsoever regarding the afterlife, and the New Testament contains virtually no direct information on the topic.

The Qur’an contains few laws, whereas the Tanakh is based on rigorous adherence to 600+ Laws, and the New Testament offers a mixed view on the matter.

And the Qur’an portrays God as a nameless, universal, and generic God whose only distinct characteristics are mercifulness and compassion; whereas the Tanakh’s God goes by the name YHWH, has an exclusive covenant with one rather small group of people, and has a wide range of humanlike characteristics and emotions; and the New Testament God has almost no distinctive characteristics, and is a tribal God turned universal God.

Qur’an to be the authentic and updated Abrahamic religion

On which

that Judaism and Christianity are based on

Ezra

In Qur’an 9:30, it says, “And the Jews say, ‘Ezra is the son of God,’ and the Christians say, ‘The Messiah [Christ/Jesus] is the son of God.’ These words come from their mouths. They imitate the saying of the unbelievers of before. God fights against them. They are perverse.”

So here the Qur’an states that Jews consider Ezra to be the son of God, presumably just like how Christians consider Jesus to be the son of God.

However, not only is this not a basic tenet of mainstream Judaism, it does *not even seem to be a belief held by any kind of Jewish sect whatsoever. In other words, there are no records of any Jews who have ever considered Ezra to be the son of God.

If the Qur’an truly contains divine knowledge from God, how could it be so mistaken in regards/*regarding to such a basic fact?

Why would an omniscient God state that Jews (generally) consider Ezra to be the Son of God?

Created Man From…

In Qur’an 15:26, it says, “We [God] created man from sounding clay, from black mud molded into shape.”

However, / But then in 19:67, it says, “Does not man remember that We [God] created him before out of nothing?” / And then in 21:30 it says: “…We [God] made every living thing from water,” and in 25:54 it says, “It is He [God] who has created man from water…”

*And then in 30:20 it says, “Among His [God’s] signs, is that He [God] created you from dust…”

And then in 96:1-2 it says: “Read: In the name of your Lord who creates; created man from a clot [of blood].”

Why do all these passages seem to offer directly contradictory information about ___ ?

They Believed … None Believed

In Qur’an 7:120-122, during a scene when the Israelites are in Egypt, it says, “And the wizards [of the Egyptian Pharaoh] fell down prostrate, and saying, ‘We believe in the Lord of the Worlds, the Lord of Moses and Aaron.’”

But then in 10:83-86, it says, “But none believed in Moses except for some of the children of his people, because of fear of Pharaoh and his chiefs would persecute them…”

Noah’s Son

In Qur’an 11:42-43, it says, “And it [the Ark] sailed with them on the waves like mountains, and Noah called out to his son who was separated, ‘O my son! Ride with us, and do not be with the unbelievers!’ The son said, ‘I will betake myself to a mountain that it will save me from the water.’ Noah said, ‘Today, there is nothing that can save from the command of God any but those who he has mercy.’ And the wave came between them, and the son was one of those who were drowned.”

So according to that passage, one of Noah’s sons drowned in the Flood[97].

However, in 21:76 it says, “And when Noah cried aforetime, We [God] heard him, and saved him and his family from great affliction.”

So here it says that God saved Noah’s family from great affliction. But 11:43 said that Noah’s son died in the Flood.

Isn’t death a great affliction?

Pairs

In Qur’an 51:47-49, it says, “We [God] have contracted the heaven with power, and it is We [God] who make the vast content. And the earth We [God] have spread out; how excellently We [God] do spread it. And of every thing We [God] created pairs, that you may reflect.”

Many Muslims have often pointed to this section to show that the Qur’an containscorrect scientific data about how everything has both male and female sexes—information that was not known during the time of Muhammad, and therefore demonstrates divine knowledge.

However, as we now know, /there are/ many plant and animal species /that/ are asexual.

Tolerate and Persecute

In its entirety, the Qur’an seems to offer a great deal of contradictory information regarding whether or not Muslims should *exercise tolerance towards non-Muslims.

Many sections seem to state that they should, some seem to command fighting against non-Muslims only for self-defense purposes, and others seem to advocate *a type of unjust persecution of all non-Muslims—and in fact, all three of these conflicting messages are often found within one particular passage of the Qur’an.

2:256 says, “There is no compulsion in religion.”

10:41 says, “And if they [nonbelievers in Islam] accuse you of falsehood, say ‘Unto me my work, and unto you your work. You are innocent of what I do, and I am innocent of what you do.’”

45:14 says, “Tell those who believe [in Islam], to forgive those who do not hope for the Days of God, that He may reward people for what they earned.”

60:8 says, “To those who have not warred against you on account of [your] religion, and did not drive you out from your homes, God does not forbid you of showing kindness and justly dealing with them. God loves the just.”

109:1-6 says, “Say: O unbelievers [in Islam]. I do not worship what you worship, nor do you worship what I worship. And I shall not worship what you worship, nor will you worship what I worship. Unto you your religion, and unto me my religion.”

So according to these passages, Muslims must exercise tolerance towards people who do not believe in Islam.

Many other sections, however, offer a very mixed message.

2:190-194 says, “Fight in the way of God with those who fight with you—but do not transgress limits. God does not love those who transgress limits. And slay them wherever you find them, and drive them out of the places where they drove you out, for persecution is worse than slaughter. And do not fight with them at the Sacred Mosque unless they fight with you there—but if they fight you there, then slay them. Such is the reward of unbelievers. But if they desist, God is Forgiving, Merciful. And fight them until there is no more persecution, and religion is for God. But if they desist, then let there be no hostility, except against oppressors. The forbidden month for the forbidden month, and forbidden things in retaliation. And one who attacks you, attack him according to how he attacked you. Maintain your duty to God, and know that God is with those who guard [against evil].”

8.36 & 38-40 says, “The unbelievers spend their wealth to debar [people] from the way of God. … Say to the unbelievers, if they desist, their past would be forgiven them; but if they persist, the punishment of those before them is already. And fight them on until there is no more persecution, and there prevails only faith in God. But if they desist, God surely sees all that they do. If they turn back, know that God is your Protector—the supreme protector and the supreme helper.”

9:1-15 says, “Immunity [is declared] from God and His Messenger [Muhammad] toward those of the idolaters that you have made a treaty with. So travel freely in the land for four months, and know that you cannot frustrate God, and that God will cover with disgrace those who disbelieve. And an announcement from God and His Messenger to the people on the day of the Greater Pilgrimage, that God and His Messenger [Muhammad] are free from obligation to the idolaters; so if you repent, it will be better for you; but if you turn away, then know that you cannot frustrate God. Proclaim of a painful punishment to those who disbelieve, except those of the idolaters with whom you have a treaty, and who have since not failed you in anything of your right nor have aided anyone against you; fulfill your treaty with them to the end of their term. Lo! God loves the dutiful. And when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them and besiege them. Prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish prayer and charity, then leave their way free to them. Lo! God is Forgiving, Merciful. If any one of the idolaters seeks your protection, then give him protection so that he may hear the word of God; and then take him to a place where he can be safe. This is because they are people who do not know. How can there be a treaty with God and with His Messenger [Muhammad], with the idolaters, except those with whom you made a treaty at the Sacred Mosque? As long as they are true to you, be true to them. Lo! God loves the dutiful. How [can there be such a treaty for the others], when if they have an advantage over you, they do not regard you in the ties of relationship, or of covenant? They satisfy you with their mouths, the while their hearts refuse. And most of them are wrongdoers. They sold God’s revelations for a small gain, and they hinder [people] from His way. Lo! Their actions are evil. And towards a believer [in Islam], they do not observe ties of relationship, or of covenant. They have transgressed the limits. However, if they repent and establish prayer and charity, then are they your brethren in religion. We [God] detail Our revelations for a people who know. And if they break their pledges after their treaty, and belittle your religion, then fight the leaders of unbelief [in Islam]. Lo! They have empty oaths, so that they may desist. Will you not fight people who broke their pledges, and schemed to expel the Messenger [Muhammad], and attacked you first? Do you fear them? But it is God who deserves for you to fear Him, if you are believers. Fight them. God will punish them by your hands, and He will lay them to disgrace and assist you against them, and heal the hearts of the believers [in Islam], and remove the rage of their hearts. God will turn to whom he will. God is Knowing, Wise.”

So what is the message of these last few sections? On one hand, Muslims are commanded to incline towards peace with any group that inclines towards peace, and to cease from transgressionary hostility against groups who desist from persecution and oppression of Muslims. On the other hand, they are told to extend fair treatment only to certain groups that make certain treaties and fulfill certain duties. And furthermore, they are also ordered to fight until only faith in God and religion for God prevails.

And then there are also other Qur’an passages that seem to clearly call for persecution of non-Muslims.

9:25-29 says, “God assisted you on many battlefields and on the day of Huneyn, when your great numbers availed you naught, and the earth, as vast as it is, was straitened for you, and you turned back in retreat. Then God sent His tranquility down upon His Messenger [Muhammad] and upon the believers [in Islam], and sent down hosts that you did not see, and punished those who disbelieved. Such is the reward of disbelievers. Then after this will God turn to whom He will, for God is Forgiving, Merciful. O you who believe! The idolaters are totally unclean. Do not let them come near the Sacred Mosque after this year. If you fear poverty, God shall enrich you from His bounty, if He wills. Lo! God is Knower, Wise. Fight those who do not believe in God or the Last Day, nor prohibit what God and his Messenger [Muhammad] have prohibited, nor follow the religion of truth, among those that have been given the Book, until they submissively and readily pay the tax, being brought low.”

47:4 says, “And when you meet unbelievers in battle, then smite the necks. When you have overcome them, then bond them, and afterwards, either grace or ransom [them] until the war lay down its burdens. That [is what shall be]. And if God willed, He could have punished them [himself], but [this is ordained] so that that He may test you by means of others. And those who are slain in the way of God, He will not let their actions be vain.”

So in these last two passages, it seems as if Muslims are ordered to fight any non-Muslims, unless they submissively and readily pay a certain tax, and are “brought low.”

And essentially, in its entirety the Qur’an tells Muslims to be tolerant of other religions, yet at the same time to fight until only faith in God remains.

Moral Teachings

Kill Them

According to certain sections of the Qur’an,

One rather notorious aspect of this moral teaching is the book’s calls for fighting and violence, not only for the sake of legitimate self-defense, but also against those who so much as present any indirect threat to the religion’s ideals.

Here are some Qur’an passages that seem to fit this des

cription:

“Fight in the way of God with those who fight with you, but do not transgress limits. God does not love those who transgress limits. And slay them wherever you find them, and drive them out of the places where they drove you out, for persecution is worse than slaughter. And do not fight with them at the Sacred Mosque unless they fight with you there, but if they fight you there, then slay them. Such is the reward of unbelievers. But if they desist, God is Forgiving, Merciful. And fight them until there is no more persecution, and religion is for God. But if they desist, then let there be no hostility, except against oppressors.”[98]

“The unbelievers spend their wealth to debar [people] from the way of God. … Say to the unbelievers, if they desist, their past would be forgiven them; but if they persist, the punishment of those before them is already. And fight them on until there is no more persecution, and only faith in God prevails. But if they desist, God surely sees all that they do. If they turn back, know that God is your Protector—the supreme protector and the supreme helper.”[99]

“Proclaim of a painful punishment to those who disbelieve, except those of the idolaters with whom you have a treaty, and who have since not failed you in anything of your right nor have aided anyone against you; fulfill your treaty with them to the end of their term. Lo! God loves the dutiful. And when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them and besiege them. Prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish prayer and charity, then leave their way free to them. Lo! God is Forgiving, Merciful. If any one of the idolaters seeks your protection, then give him protection so that he may hear the word of God; and then take him to a place where he can be safe. This is because they are people who do not know. … And if they break their pledges after their treaty, and belittle your religion, then fight the leaders of unbelief [in Islam]. Lo! They have empty oaths, so that they may desist.”[100]

“Fight those who do not believe in God or the Last Day, nor prohibit what God and his Messenger [Muhammad] have prohibited, nor follow the religion of truth, among those that have been given the Book, until they submissively and readily pay the tax, and are brought low.”[101]

“And when you meet unbelievers in battle, then smite the necks. When you have overcome them, then bond them, and afterwards, either grace or ransom [them] until the war lay down its burdens. That [is what shall be]. And if God willed, He could have punished them [himself], but [this is ordained] so that that He may test you by means of others. And those who are slain in the way of God, He will not let their actions be vain.”[102]

Can a perfect moral guide command the killing of people with religious beliefs that differ from yours? Does a major component of the right way of life merely consist of fighting those who do not believe in what you consider to be the true religion? Does this seem to be an aspect of the divinely commanded perfect way of life, and moral duties that God would give to people? Is it possible that the slaying of disbelievers is divine work that uplifts you and the world towards the ideal of all ideals?

Slavery

And here is another Qur’an Law that few people would regard as part of a perfect moral guide:

“O ye who believe! Let your slaves, and those of you who have not come to puberty, ask leave of you at three times [before they come into your presence]: Before the prayer of dawn, and when you lay aside your raiment for the heat of noon, and after the prayer of night.”[103]

So the Qur’an allows slavery, and, like the Old Testament, sets laws regulating it.

Again, can slavery be considered morally correct? Would a perfect guide to the right way of life allow it, and refer to it as if it is an ordinary and acceptable practice?

Men > Women

“Men are in charge of women, because God has made the one of them to excel the other, and because they spend of their property [in order to support women]. So good women are the obedient, guarding in secret God has guarded. As for those from whom you fear rebellion, admonish them and banish them to beds apart, and scourge them. Then if they obey you, seek not a way against them.” [104]

So essentially, the Qur’an regards women as subservient to men—men are superior, and women have a duty to be obedient to them.

Lewdness

* And then there is the punishment for women who commit lewdness:

“As for those of your women who are guilty of lewdness, call to witness four of you against them. And if they testify [to the truth of the allegation], then confine them to the houses until death takes them, or [until] God appoints a way for them [through new legislation].” [105]

So women convicted of lewdness must be confined to house arrest for life.

Cut Off Their Hands

* On theft, it says:

“As for the thief, both male and female, cut off their hands. It is the reward of their own deeds, an exemplary punishment from God.”[106]

So, God’s exemplary punishment for theft is to cut off the thief’s hands.

Doesn’t this seem a little severe? Can this be a punishment that justly fits the crime?

Conclusion / Summary

The world’s three major Abrahamic religions—Judaism Christianity, and Islam—each claim to be the product of divine communications from a perfect and only creator God to the human beings he decided to put into existence at some point in the past, and then later decided to give divine guidance to via certain revelations through a line of selected messengers.

To me, this means that these religions have their very basis in these claims, and that they can only be regarded as valid if they can in some way demonstrate they are the products of God himself. In other words, these religions make very serious claims of being from a perfect God and providing guidance on the only authentic right way of human life—and we should by all means take these claims at face value, and try to *determine whether or not they are valid.

But what sources should we use in order to determine what these religions actually are? What can we consider to be the most reliable recording of the God-to-prophet revelations that these religions say occurred centuries and centuries ago?

I respond: The earliest and most widely-circulated writings that are represented as actual recordings of these revelations. In other words, we must rely on these religions’ accepted scriptures.

But what should we expect from a perfect God’s religion and its scriptures? What minimum standards should God’s religion meet in order to demonstrate to us—human beings living in the present day—that it is* in fact forms the ultimate and absolute truth given to us in order to provide guidance on how we ought to live out our existence and what we ought to believe?

I respond: Something quite extraordinary to say the very least—an unparalleled source of enlightening wisdom and truth that man-made sources cannot come close to matching. [107]

But before examining these scriptures and trying to conclude whether nor not they meet such standards, let’s first consider a couple of factors that play an important role in this analysis.

First of all, I think its important to point out that, independent of any points made, arguments for these religions’ validity are at a major disadvantage compared to opposing arguments: the former must take the side of what they consider to be a perfect God, and support the claim that the religion they favor is the completely perfect product of divine omniscience; while the latter do not necessarily need to perfectly discredit a religion in its entirety.

In other words, an anti-Judaism/Christianity/Islam argument only needs to be right about a few major points, while a pro anti-Judaism/Christianity/Islam stance needs to be right about almost everything.

Furthermore, the religions themselves must rely on their scriptures as being our source of accurate accounts of the divine revelations that form the basis of these religions—for otherwise, the world’s 6+ billion people would really have no legitimate way of knowing what these revelations are, and in such a case, these religions really would not be able to legitimately deem themselves worthy of belief and adherence.

So then, if these scriptures do indeed accurately represent recordings of God’s message to human beings, and if they are the only reliable source mankind has of this message, what should we expect of them?

But in order to do this, let’s first ask ourselves:

But now let’s consider another important matter relevant to this investigation: human reasoning and its limits.

Allow me to explain what I mean:

As human beings, our views are *by their very nature subject to being limited and incomplete.

And since truth and reality are what they are, but human views, reasoning is/ bound to contain flaws—particularly due to one-sided views and one-sided conclusions—it must thereby follow that the whole truth can only be reached from/by examining all data from all perspectives, and that any line of human reasoning or chain of logic is liable to miss this truth, misrepresent reality, and make erroneous and misleading conclusions.

Or to put it another way, a line of human argument or reasoning will inevitably err at least to some degree by jumping to hasty and not fully valid conclusions / making premature conclusions,, making faulty inferences from a limited amount of data, regarding certain matters as the same or very similar when in fact they are considerably different, making invalid analogical extensions and inferences, relying on inadequate information, being beclouded by limited perspectives and by parts of a whole, remaining attached to a certain view and not properly considering others, having preconceptions that hinder *objective broadmindedness, or having preconceived motives that result in bias. Different arguments often produce contrary conclusions, and what seems to be true according to a particular human argument might not be so in reality.

In addition to this, when assessing religious matters in particular, we must also consider how a complete divine truth might have extraordinary qualities that we are for the most part unaccustomed to being exposed to or understanding as human beings, and *that might be difficult to assess from conventional human views and reasoning, and might even appear flawed from such views and according to such reasoning.

And so, considering the limitations of human views and reasoning in general / the ways *it is apt to go wrong/ , as well as the fact that religious truths might have qualities that are difficult to assess and *apprehend using conventional human views and reasoning, the question that begs to be asked next is this:

What role should human reasoning play in assessing the validity of a religion?

I respond:

It must play some sort of role, without

Well, on one hand, in order to promote the truth through human reasoning, we should not misuse it. Rather than merely choosing one line of reasoning or chain of logic over another in a somewhat partial and arbitrary manner, and rather than trusting too much to human views and reasoning, we should instead aim to be multi-perspectived, unassuming, and broad when considering any data and lines of logic. It is not enough to merely reason, make absolute conclusions, and have complete faith in them.

But on the other hand, we obviously do need to apply our reasoning to some extent in order to determine what each religion is, and whether we should place our faith in a particular religion. Otherwise, we would merely be arbitrarily placing our absolute faith in one of the world’s numerous religions/sects, and essentially be doing so without taking the actual religion itself into account, and without placing it in the context of reality as whole.

So ultimately, it seems to me as if we really have no choice but to examine religions by using our reasoning, notwithstanding its limits and potential flaws.

Reasoning is to some degree a necessity, and we should use without abusing it, and be sure not to rely on one-sided views or inadequate information.

Now then, taking all of the aforementioned factors into account, let’s ask ourselves: Do the scriptures of the three main Abrahamic religions—the Tanakh, Bible, and Qur’an—seem to fulfill the criteria of what a written record of a divine revelation ought to be like?

*Well, throughout this book, I presented what, in my view, are some major inconsistencies, contradictions, errors, and objectionable moral content contained in these scriptures.

For instance:

The Tanakh contains two creation accounts with differing details.

It sometimes portrays YHWH as the only truly existing God of the universe, *yet at other times refers to him as a supreme God among others that actually exist.

It asserts that YHWH is the supreme God of the universe, *yet confines this supreme God’s religion to one very small ethnic group.

It contains an ancient world Flood account does not at all seem to coincide with what was reasonably possible at the time, and does not seem anywhere close to matching the current data we have about the living world and its likely origins.

It contains accounts of several significant early world history events, and then almost never mentions them at all again.

It details ten supernatural plagues that YHWH brought upon Egypt—and yet these plagues are not mentioned in the numerous early Egyptian documents we have today, or in Egyptian folklore in general.

It contains numerous historical accounts about how a large Israelite group lived in Egypt, made a mass exodus, wandered in the Sinai Peninsula, conquered and destroyed various Canaanite cities, and had a unified, powerful, wealthy Kingdom under King David and King Solomon—and yet, there is no data today that backs up such accounts.

And it contains precepts such as “… Do not slay the innocent and righteous” and “…Love your neighbor as yourself”, yet also contains accounts of YHWH commanding the Israelites to slay entire communities.

And as for its moral teachings:

It condones slavery, regards slaves as the property of slaveholders, and points out that slaves can be beaten as long as they are not killed.

It requires raped virgin women to marry their rapist.

It considers many seemingly minor offenses to be worthy of capital punishment—for instance, being a disobedient son, being a bride found out to be a non-virgin, or working on the Sabbath.

It tells us how YHWH—the absolute standard of perfection—killed 70,000 men in order to punish King David for taking a census of his people.

It tells us how the Israelites, under the command of YHWH, plundered regions and slew entire communities—including women and children.

And it tells us how/that King David—a man who led many of these plunderings and slayings—was a righteous person whose heart was perfect with YHWH.

OK, now let’s move on to the Four Gospels of the New Testament.

Two of them tell us that Jesus was born of a virgin mother—and yet, the other two leave this important piece of information completely unmentioned, as do various other writings in the New Testament.

They contain numerous accounts of Jesus performing numerous miracles and gaining great fame—and yet, they also claim that he dies a persecuted leader of a small religious sect,

—and furthermore, the surviving early non-Christian historical sources of that era either do not mention him, or do not portray him as a very famous or noteworthy man. *

They contain accounts of resurrections in which the formerly dead were seen by many—and yet, no early historical sources outside of the Christian scriptures make any mentions of such occurrences

They sometimes portray Jesus as the same as God the Father, but also contain a great deal of content that indicates he is a distinctly different being.

They quote Jesus as saying that the precept “Therefore, in all things, whatever you would have others do to you, you shall also do so to them” is the equivalent of the Judaic Law and the Prophets—and yet, this teaching is not even a prominent theme of the Tanakh.

They quote Jesus as stating that Jewish Law cannot be changed or added to, but also quote Jesus himself amending this Law.

They portray Jesus as the promised Jewish Messiah, but contain life accounts of him that, in their entirety, do not have him fulfilling many of the Jewish scriptures’ Messianic prophecies.

Their descriptions of God the Father seem vastly different from the Tanakh’s descriptions of YHWH.

And they contain accounts of the devil taking Jesus up to a high mountain and showing him and the kingdoms of the world, as if the earth is flat and can be seen in its entirety form such a view.

And as for Jesus’s moral teachings contained in the Four Gospels:

He teaches people to relinquish all possessions and give to all who ask of them—precepts that when followed will leave someone with no way to take care of himself and meet his needs, and opens the way for others to take advantage of him for their own unscrupulous aims.

He does not permit (sexually) faithful married couples to be divorced—and by doing so, he obligates many couples to remain in mutually detrimental marriages.

He commands us to willingly allow others to do evil to us and strike us—and thus leaves us no way to protect ourselves against other people’s malevolence and/or aims to take advantage of us for their own benefit.

And he tells us that it is necessary to hate everyone—including our family and ourselves—in order to be a genuine follower of his.

OK, now let’s move on to the Qur’an.

It often says that Jewish and Christian scriptures are valid and that Jews and Christian are eligible for salvation, yet it also frequently indicates the contrary, and points out that only Muslims who follow the Qur’an are righteous people who will at the end.

It portrays itself as a clarification, exposition, and continuation of revelations recorded in Jewish and Christian scriptures, yet it features many major themes that are not at all prominent in the Tanakh and New Testament.

It states that Jews consider Ezra to be the son of God—and yet, there are no records of any Jews ever holding such a belief.

It says that God created man from clay, but later tells us that God created man from nothing, then later states on two occasions that God created man from water, and then still later tells us that God created from dust, and follows up with yet another account that states God created man from a clot of blood.

It contains an account of the Egyptian Pharaoh’s wizards affirming belief in the Israelite God, but later says that no one believed Moses other than some of the children of his people.

It states that one of Noah’s sons died in the Flood, but later points out that God saved Noah and his family from great affliction.

And it offers a very mixed message about whether or not Muslims should exercise tolerance towards non-Muslims.

And as for its moral teachings:

It *oftentimes calls for fighting and violence towards what might indirectly be perceived as threats to the religion’s ideals.

It condones slavery.

It states that God made men to excel women, that men are in charge of women, and that women must be obedient to men.

It says that women who are guilty of “lewdness” should be put on house arrest for the rest of their lives.

And it says that the proper punishment for stealing is a hand amputation.

So, considering all various __ , isn’t there enough to put some major doubts on whether these religions really are what they claim to be and what they ought to be if they indeed are the products of a divine revelation from a perfect God?

Is it that all the alleged contradictions, inconsistencies, errors, and objectionable moral teachings in the Tanakh, New Testament, and Qur’an are not quite what they might seem, and are actually just minor matters that appear doubtful from a one-sided point of view and from flawed human argumentation and conclusion making?

Or do these scriptures plainly show major problems even from a comprehensive and unassuming standpoint—problems that make it very difficult to reconcile their actual content with their claims of being humanity’s only recordings of a perfect God’s perfect message to human beings?

Does the data we currently have support the claim that the religious doctrine of Judaism, Christianity, or Islam comes from the revelations of a perfect God?

Or do we have enough to refute these religion’s claims of being perfect, from a perfect God, and the purpose and meaning of life that nothing else in the world can claim to be?

Well, in my opinion, based on my research, observations, thoughts, and so on, it seems as if, at the bare minimum, these religions do not measure up to what they ought to be, and that ultimately, neither the Tanakh, New Testament, or Qur’an—our only reliable recordings of what these religions represent as God’s revelations to mankind—really* do contain the accurately recorded communications given from a perfect and only divine being to various human beings at some point in the past.

But please do not misinterpret what I mean by this.

I am not attacking Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, nor am I even going so far as to assert with 100% certainty that the above conclusion is the absolute, unmodifiable, and unchallengeable truth.

However, let me put it this way:

Over the long history of these three religions, billions of people have affirmed their acceptance of them*, and many of those people have adamantly asserted their ideas, beliefs, etc.

But considering how we are human beings that are capable of thought and reasoning, living in a world with numerous viewpoints on theological matters and with various old and new established religious dogmas, and living in an era generally marked by unprecedented freedom, communicational advancements, and availability of information, isn’t it time for us—collectively, as humanity—to do an adequate job of considering the points for and against any religion?

And in order to do so with Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, shouldn’t we—as either questioners or supporters of these religions—responsibly examine them, bring up points for and against them, address the matter integral to this debate, and respond to points brought up by the opposing side, in order for us to all share viewpoints and gain insight together, and in order for the world as a whole to progress together in assessing religion in general, and in putting all perspectives under consideration?

By doing my investigation and writing this book, I feel that I—as a seeker of truth for myself first, and the world second—am doing my part in this process.

And now I look forward to hearing your response.

[78] Keep in mind that Jesus represented his doctrine as an addition to and fulfillment of the Judaic teachings, and that he reaffirmed the authority of those teachings. In other words, the moral teachings of the Tanakh / Old Testament are also part of the doctrine of Christianity, except, I suppose, in the few cases where Jesus alters a Judaic Law.



Koran Violence
Is Jesus the Messiah?
Is Jesus God?
jesus-law

How Did Saul Die?

In I Samuel 31:4, it says, “Then Saul said unto his armourbearer, ‘Draw your sword, and thrust me through therewith; lest these uncircumcised come and thrust me through, and abuse me.’ But his armourbearer would not, for he was sore afraid. Therefore, Saul took a sword, and fell upon it.”

So, according to that passage, Saul died by committing suicide.

But in II Samuel 21:12, it says, “ And David went and took the bones of Saul and the bones of Jonathan his son from the men of Jabeshgilead, which had stolen them from the street of Bethshan, where the Philistines had hanged them, when the Philistines had slain Saul in Gilboa.”

So, according to this passage, the Philistines murdered Saul!


Last Words

The accounts of Jesus’s last words vary in the Gospels.

In Matthew 27:46-50, it says, “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, ‘Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?’—that is to say, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’ … Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost [he died].”

In Luke 23:46, it says: “And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, ‘Father, into your hands I commend my spirit,’ and having said thus, he gave up the ghost [he died].”

In John 19:30, it says, “When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, ‘It is finished,’ and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost [he died].”


One Thousand or Fifty Thousand?

In Qur’an 22:47, it says, “And they ask you to hasten on the punishment. And God will not fail on His promise. Surely, a day in the sight of your Lord is like a thousand years of your figuring.”

But in 70:4, it says, “The angels and the spirit ascend unto Him [God] a Day the measure of which is fifty thousand years:”

So which passage is right? 22:47 says that a day to God is like a thousand human years, and 70:4 says a day to God is like fifty thousand human years.


Parted or Brought Together?

In Qur’an 41:11, when God is creating the world, it says, “Then He [God] turned to the Heaven as it was smoke. He said to it and earth, ‘Come you together, willingly or unwillingly.’ They said, ‘We come [together] willingly.’”

Thus, the creation involved God ordering the earth and Heaven be put together.

But then in 21:30, it says, “Don’t the unbelievers know that the heavens and the earth were together, then We [God] parted them, and We [God] made every living thing of water? Will they not then believe?”


Views on Wine

In Qur’an 5:90, it says, “O you who believe. Intoxicants and gambling and idols and [divining] arrows are an impurity, the work of Satan—shun them, so that you may succeed.”

And according to passages like this that say intoxicants are impure and the work of Satan, observant Muslims do not drink liquor.

And yet, in 47:15 and in 83:25, it says that in the garden of paradise, there will be rivers of wine for the pious people to drink.


Did Jesus Aim His Religion at Non-Jews?

The Four Gospels offer contradictory data on whether Jesus aimed his religion only at Jews, or at both Jews and non-Jews.

In Matthew 10:5-6, Jesus tells his twelve disciples, “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter into any city of the Samaritans—instead, go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

In Matthew 15:24, Jesus says, “I am sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

So both of these passages portray Jesus as confining his teaching only to the Jews.

And yet, in Matthew 28:18-20, Jesus says, “All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Thus, go you [disciples] and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe all things I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

And in Mark 16:15, he says, “Go you into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.”


Seven Earths?

In Qur’an 65:12, it says, “It is God who has created seven heavens, and of the earth the like thereof.”

And yet, there is no scientific evidence that there are seven earths.


How Did Saul Die?

In I Samuel 31:4, it says, “Then Saul said unto his armourbearer, ‘Draw your sword, and thrust me through therewith; lest these uncircumcised come and thrust me through, and abuse me.’ But his armourbearer would not, for he was sore afraid. Therefore, Saul took a sword, and fell upon it.”

So, according to that passage, Saul died by committing suicide.

But in II Samuel 21:12, it says, “ And David went and took the bones of Saul and the bones of Jonathan his son from the men of Jabeshgilead, which had stolen them from the street of Bethshan, where the Philistines had hanged them, when the Philistines had slain Saul in Gilboa.”

So, according to this passage, the Philistines murdered Saul!


Gospel Genealogy Contradictions

One very obvious contradiction between the Four Gospels is the differing genealogies of Jesus contained in the Matthew and Luke.

In Mathew 1:2-16, Jesus’s genealogy is from Abraham, and from David to Jesus goes like this: David, Solomon, Roboam, Abia, Asa, Josaphat, Joram, Ozias, Joatham, Achaz, Ezekias, Manasses, Amon, Josias, Jechonias, Salathiel, Zorobabel, Abiud, Eliakim, Azor, Sadoc, Achim, Eliud, Eleazar, Matthan, Jacob, Joseph, Jesus.

In Luke 3:23-38, it is traced from God and Adam to Jesus, and from David to Jesus goes like this: David, Nathan, Mattatha, Menan, Melea, Eliakim, Jonan, Joseph, Juda, Simeon, Levi, Matthat, Jorim, Eliezer, Jose, Er, Elmodam, Cosam, Addi, Melchi, Neri, Salathiel, Zorobabel, Rhesa, Joanna, Juda, Joseph, Semei, Mattathias, Maath, Naggai, Esli, Naum, Amos, Mattathias, Joseph, Janna, Melchi, Levi, Matthat, Heli, Joseph, Jesus.*

These lists are filled with numerous similarities and differences. And perhaps even more bizarrely, they both trace Jesus’s lineage through Joseph, even though the Gospels state that Jesus was born to Mary as God’s son, and although Joseph was married to Mary, he was not the father of Jesus!

Odds are that Jesus lived, preached in the Roman Province of Palestine, said most of the things attributed to him in the Gospels, had an impact on many Jews and perhaps a few non-Jews, attracted a group of disciples, had enemies, and was arrested by Roman soldiers, put on trial, and crucified on a Roman cross. Most of the rest of the Gospel accounts of him, however, are highly speculative, and will be investigated throughout much of this chapter.

Today, it is almost universally accepted that most of the New Testament was originally written in Greek, which increases the likelihood of inaccuracies, considering that Jesus spoke mainly Aramaic.[2]


Last Words

The accounts of Jesus’s last words vary in the Gospels.

In Matthew 27:46-50, it says, “And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, ‘Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?’—that is to say, ‘My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?’ … Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost [he died].”

In Luke 23:46, it says: “And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, ‘Father, into your hands I commend my spirit,’ and having said thus, he gave up the ghost [he died].”

In John 19:30, it says, “When Jesus therefore had received the vinegar, he said, ‘It is finished,’ and he bowed his head, and gave up the ghost [he died].”


One Thousand or Fifty Thousand?

In Qur’an 22:47, it says, “And they ask you to hasten on the punishment. And God will not fail on His promise. Surely, a day in the sight of your Lord is like a thousand years of your figuring.”

But in 70:4, it says, “The angels and the spirit ascend unto Him [God] a Day the measure of which is fifty thousand years:”

So which passage is right? 22:47 says that a day to God is like a thousand human years, and 70:4 says a day to God is like fifty thousand human years.


Parted or Brought Together?

In Qur’an 41:11, when God is creating the world, it says, “Then He [God] turned to the Heaven as it was smoke. He said to it and earth, ‘Come you together, willingly or unwillingly.’ They said, ‘We come [together] willingly.’”

Thus, the creation involved God ordering the earth and Heaven be put together.

But then in 21:30, it says, “Don’t the unbelievers know that the heavens and the earth were together, then We [God] parted them, and We [God] made every living thing of water? Will they not then believe?”

Views on Wine

In Qur’an 5:90, it says, “O you who believe. Intoxicants and gambling and idols and [divining] arrows are an impurity, the work of Satan—shun them, so that you may succeed.”

And according to passages like this that say intoxicants are impure and the work of Satan, observant Muslims do not drink liquor.

And yet, in 47:15 and in 83:25, it says that in the garden of paradise, there will be rivers of wine for the pious people to drink.

Did Jesus Aim His Religion at Non-Jews?

The Four Gospels offer contradictory data on whether Jesus aimed his religion only at Jews, or at both Jews and non-Jews.

In Matthew 10:5-6, Jesus tells his twelve disciples, “Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter into any city of the Samaritans—instead, go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

In Matthew 15:24, Jesus says, “I am sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

So both of these passages portray Jesus as confining his teaching only to the Jews.

And yet, in Matthew 28:18-20, Jesus says, “All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Thus, go you [disciples] and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, teaching them to observe all things I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.

And in Mark 16:15, he says, “Go you into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.”

Seven Earths?

In Qur’an 65:12, it says, “It is God who has created seven heavens, and of the earth the like thereof.”

And yet, there is no scientific evidence that there are seven earths.

Gospel Genealogy Contradictions

One very obvious contradiction between the Four Gospels is the differing genealogies of Jesus contained in the Matthew and Luke.

In Mathew 1:2-16, Jesus’s genealogy is from Abraham, and from David to Jesus goes like this: David, Solomon, Roboam, Abia, Asa, Josaphat, Joram, Ozias, Joatham, Achaz, Ezekias, Manasses, Amon, Josias, Jechonias, Salathiel, Zorobabel, Abiud, Eliakim, Azor, Sadoc, Achim, Eliud, Eleazar, Matthan, Jacob, Joseph, Jesus.

In Luke 3:23-38, it is traced from God and Adam to Jesus, and from David to Jesus goes like this: David, Nathan, Mattatha, Menan, Melea, Eliakim, Jonan, Joseph, Juda, Simeon, Levi, Matthat, Jorim, Eliezer, Jose, Er, Elmodam, Cosam, Addi, Melchi, Neri, Salathiel, Zorobabel, Rhesa, Joanna, Juda, Joseph, Semei, Mattathias, Maath, Naggai, Esli, Naum, Amos, Mattathias, Joseph, Janna, Melchi, Levi, Matthat, Heli, Joseph, Jesus.*

These lists are filled with numerous similarities and differences. And perhaps even more bizarrely, they both trace Jesus’s lineage through Joseph, even though the Gospels state that Jesus was born to Mary as God’s son, and although Joseph was married to Mary, he was not the father of Jesus!

Odds are that Jesus lived, preached in the Roman Province of Palestine, said most of the things attributed to him in the Gospels, had an impact on many Jews and perhaps a few non-Jews, attracted a group of disciples, had enemies, and was arrested by Roman soldiers, put on trial, and crucified on a Roman cross. Most of the rest of the Gospel accounts of him, however, are highly speculative, and will be investigated throughout much of this chapter.

Today, it is almost universally accepted that most of the New Testament was originally written in Greek, which increases the likelihood of inaccuracies, considering that Jesus spoke mainly Aramaic.[2]



[1] For instance, in Genesis 21:23, Genesis 31:13, Genesis 35:1,3, Genesis 43:14, Genesis 46:3, Genesis 48:3, Genesis 49:25, Exodus 15:2, Exodus 20:5, Exodus 34:6

[2] The use of Greek is not surprising considering that it was a fairly common language in the area around Jesus’s time, and even more so not long after his death

John 10:35

Matthew 4:4, 7, 10


Human sources Joshua 10:13, Acts 17:28, 16, 15:33, Titus 1:12


Genesis 5:4


Daniel contains post-Daniel data


Matthew 26:63


John 4:25


II Kings 23: Josiah made a reformation in 621 BC that led to YHWH monotheism.