I continue from where I left off https://answeringislamblog.wordpress.com/2019/05/20/the-quranic-verse-that-exposed-the-fraud-who-is-muhammad-pt-1/.
When the Christians successfully stumped Muhammad by using his own words against him to prove the Deity of Christ, Muhammad needed to find a way out of the dilemma which he had created for himself.
Muhammad did manage to come up with a reply, namely, those passages which refer to Jesus as God’s Word and Spirit are unclear and one should therefore not focus on them!
In his exegesis of Q. 3:7 Ibn Kathir mentions that this text addresses Christians who utilized the Quran to prove that Jesus is divine:
<So as for those in whose hearts there is a deviation> meaning, those who are misguided and deviate from truth to falsehood…
<they follow that which is not entirely clear thereof> meaning, they refer to the Mutashabih, because they are able to alter its meanings to conform with their false interpretation since the wordings of the Mutashabihat encompass such a wide area of meanings. As for the Muhkam Ayat, they cannot be altered because they are clear and, thus, constitute unequivocal proof against the misguided people. This is why Allah said…
<seeking Al-Fitnah> meaning, they seek to misguide their following by pretending to prove their innovation by relying on the Qur’an — the Mutashabih of it — but, this is proof against and not for them. For instance, Christians might claim that [`Isa is divine because] the Qur’an states that he is Ruhullah and His Word, which He gave to Mary, all the while ignoring Allah’s statements…
<He [`Isa] was not more than a servant. We granted Our favor to him.> [43:59], and…
<Verily, the likeness of `Isa before Allah is the likeness of Adam. He created him from dust, then (He) said to him: “Be!” and he was.> [3:59].
There are other Ayat that clearly assert that `Isa is but one of Allah’s creatures and that he is the servant and Messenger of Allah, among other Messengers. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir http://www.qtafsir.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=563&Itemid=46; bold and underline emphasis ours)
It is obvious from these quotations that the only reason why Muhammad claimed that the Quran contains unclear passages, whose meanings only Allah knows, is because the Christians were using his own words against him, showing how he contradicted himself concerning Jesus. He, therefore, needed a way out of this mess that he created. Prior to that time, Muhammad was constantly boasting how clear and fully detailed the verses of his book were.
[Sidenote: Nor is this the only time that Muhammad had people use his own words against him, thereby causing him great embarrassment. There were other occasions where Muhammad was forced to come up with verses or an argument in order to undo the damage that he had created due to statements which he made in the Quran. Here is one example: https://answering-islam.org/Quran/Contra/qi032.html.
Another one would be Q. 9:31, a text which I will be examining in another post.]
Thirdly, it is simply question begging to assume that the texts which refer to the beliefs of Christians are part of the unclear passages of the Quran. In fact, that is not what the Quran claims about these verses but actually makes the exact opposite assertion.
The Quran says that it clearly explains and clarifies to the Jews and Christians the matters in which they differ and dispute over, as well as to bring to light the things which they have hidden from others:
And with those who say ‘We are Christians’ We took compact; and they have forgotten a portion of that they were reminded of. So We have stirred up among them enmity and hatred, till the Day of Resurrection; and God will assuredly tell them of the things they wrought. People of the Book, now there has come to you Our Messenger, MAKING CLEAR TO YOU many things you have been concealing of the Book, and effacing many things. There has come to you from God a light, AND A BOOK MANIFEST whereby God guides whosoever follows His good pleasure in the ways of peace, and brings them forth from the shadows into the light by His leave; and He guides them to a straight path. They are unbelievers who say, ‘God is the Messiah, Mary’s son.’ Say: ‘Who then shall overrule God in any way if He desires to destroy the Messiah, Mary’s son, and his mother, and all those who are on earth?’ For to God belongs the kingdom of the heavens and of the earth, and all that is between them, creating what He will. God is powerful over everything. Say the Jews and Christians, ‘We are the sons of God, and His beloved ones.’ Say: ‘Why then does He chastise you for your sins? No; you are mortals, of His creating; He forgives whom He will, and He chastises whom He will.’ For to God belongs the kingdom of the heavens and of the earth, and all that is between them; to Him is the homecoming. People of the Book, now there has come to you Our Messenger, MAKING THINGS CLEAR TO YOU, upon an interval between the Messengers lest you should say, ‘There has not come to us any bearer of good tidings, neither any warner.’ Indeed, there has come to you a bearer of good tidings and a warner; God is powerful over everything. S. 5:14-19 Arberry
The Messiah, son of Mary, was no other than a messenger, messengers (the like of whom) had passed away before him. And his mother was a saintly woman. And they both used to eat (earthly) food. See how We make the revelations CLEAR TO THEM, and see how they are turned away! S. 5:75 Pickthall
The above verses expressly say that the Quran was “revealed” to make some things clear to the Jews and Christians concerning their cherished beliefs such as the Deity of Christ and the divinity of Mary. We will have more to say about the meaning of these texts in the second part of our rebuttal.
And We did not send before you any but men to whom We sent revelation — so ask the followers of the Reminder if you do not know — With clear arguments and scriptures; and We have revealed to you the Reminder that you may make clear to men what has been revealed to them, and that haply they may reflect. S. 16:43-44 Shakir
By Allah, We indeed sent (Messengers) to the nations before you (O Muhammad), but Shaitan (Satan) made their deeds fair-seeming to them. So he (Satan) is their Wali (helper) today (i.e. in this world), and theirs will be a painful torment. And We have not sent down the Book (the Qur’an) to you (O Muhammad), except that you may EXPLAIN CLEARLY unto them those things in which they differ, and (as) a guidance and a mercy for a folk who believe. S. 16:63-64 Hilali-Khan
Since the Quran says that one of its functions is to clarify the differences between the Jews and Christians and to make clear what has been revealed to them, this means that those verses dealing with Christian beliefs are not part of the unclear passages. Rather, these are some of the texts whose meanings are supposed to be perspicuous and therefore cannot be open to multiple interpretations.
After all, if these particular texts were unclear and open to multiple meanings, then they could not provide any clarification for the Christians, but only cause them further confusion. This would, therefore, defeat one of the main functions of the Quran, which was supposedly “sent” to make things clear – not make them more confusing – for the Jews and Christians.
So much for the Quran being the word of God and for Muhammad being his messenger.