Article By Harun Yahya

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Islam's Acceptance of Judaism and Christianity

We are living in an era in which the world is desperately in need of peace, friendship and solidarity. The tensions and conflicts that so defined the twentieth century continue in this new century and innocent people all around the world continue to suffer from them.

Despite the urgent need for solidarity and cooperation, certain circles are inciting conflict, particularly conflict between the world's two greatest and deep-rooted civilizations. This issue needs to be scrutinized, as the war of civilizations that they envisage would have disastrous consequences for humanity. One of the best ways of preventing such a disaster is to strengthen the dialogue and cooperation between these civilizations. This is not a hard task, as there are no fundamental differences between Islam and the Judeo-Christian western world. To the contrary, there is much common ground between them. Considering the current situation and the nature of the world's problems, these shared values will make the cooperation necessary for solving them possible.

Today, ideological struggles continue to divide the world. However, Muslims are not at one pole and Jews and Christians are not at the opposing pole. In fact, one pole represents people who believe in God's existence and unity and the other pole represents the unbelievers, who believe in such anti-religious ideologies as materialism and Darwinism. There is only one way to defeat the alliance of the various groups of unbelievers on an ideological level: eradicate the negative and destructive influences of anti-religious materialism and further the cause of a society dominated by morality, happiness, tranquility, security and prosperity. This will be done by forming an alliance of all conscientious people, namely, sincere Christians, along with religious Jews and Muslims, who will come together and unite in this common cause.

There have been conflicts and disputes between members of these three religions in the past, but those were the result of the erroneous reasoning and evil motives of certain states, nations and individuals who pursued their own economic and political gain instead of the central beliefs of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. One of the common aims of these divinely revealed religions is to ensure the happiness, security, peace and tranquility of all people by opposing conflict.

Therefore, this dialogue and alliance will be based on the sincere believers' quest for justice, peace and support for all people. The resulting dialogue will not be restricted to meetings and conferences, but will cement an alliance between people who advocate common values, fight for the same cause and seek permanent solutions to common problems.

Muslims, Christians and Jews have common principles of faith, worship and moral values and face common dangers. Thus, the People of the Book (Christians and Jews) are called on to unite with Muslims as fellow believers opposed to atheism, anti-religiosity and social as well as moral degeneration. All Jews, Christians and Muslims who are sincere, conscientious, tolerant, helpful, conciliatory, reasonable, virtuous, peaceful and fair to recognize that we believe in the same God and strive to live and extend the reach of God's morality, should spread this virtue around the world.

We Muslims love and respect Prophets Moses (pbuh) and Jesus (pbuh), know that they are loved and dear people in God's presence and believe in all His Prophets. Furthermore, we respect Jewish and Christian beliefs, values and traditions, for God commands us to invite the People of the Book to 'unite on a common premise'. (Qur'an, 3:64)

Muslims are people who believe in the Qur'an revealed to Prophet Muhammad (may God bless him and grant him peace) as well as in the earlier divinely revealed books: the Pages of Abraham (pbuh), the Torah revealed to Moses (pbuh), the Book of Psalms revealed to David (pbuh) and the Bible revealed to Jesus (pbuh). However, over time these books were tampered with and therefore contain both accurate (e.g., belief in God, virtue, the Day of Judgment and the rejection of idolatry) and inaccurate information. (Qur'an, 3:3-4; 5:44)

God states that the People of the Book are believers in the Qur'an. (Qur'an, 3:199; 3:113-15) Therefore, a Muslim's attitude toward the People of the Book reflects the probable existence of genuinely faithful people among them. Only God knows the hearts of people and He reveals that some Jews and Christians have earned His good pleasure.

Throughout history, God has sent Prophets to people to inform them of His laws, commands and prohibitions. Essentially, all Prophets have invited their nations to believe in and worship God and to abide by the limits He has established for humanity. In other words, all true religions in their original state are based on the principles of not associating others with Him and of working to win His good pleasure, compassion and Paradise. All nations are expected to follow God's will without fail and to do good deeds in order to earn His reward. (Qur'an, 5:48)

Harun Yahya, 29/September/2004

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