Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Ishmael or Isaac

Ishmael or Isaac

Tomorrow (13th Sept. 2016) over a billion Muslims all over the world will be celebrating the Eid in memory of Abraham's sacrifice in order to get some spiritual merit. They will slaughter goats, sheep, cows, bulls, camels at home and even on the streets. Wherever there is a Muslim community, there would be blood all over the place.

Here is modified extract from the book DOST (Friend) that you might find helpful to pray (1Timothy 2:4) and proclaim and engage in a friendly dialogue with your Muslim friends, colleagues and neighbors who celebrate the Eid ul Adha or Bakra Eid when they slaughter an animal and share the meat with others as a sunnat (tradition) of the sacrifice of Abraham's son. Interestingly, Abraham did not eat any of the sacrificial meat, but offered it as a burnt offering until the whole thing went off in a holy smoke.

According to the Holy Bible, Hazrat Ibrahim was commanded to offer his son Izhaak (Isaac) as a sacrifice. Obediently, he went up on Mount Moriah where he built a temporary kurbaan-gah (altar) and laid Izhaak on it. But just at the last moment, Jehovah Jireh (God who provides) miraculously provided him with a ram, which he sacrificed instead of his son. A thousand year later, King Solomon built the Jerusalem Temple on the same site.

Angel Jibreel (Gabriel), after washing Mohammad heart with the waters of fountain called Zam Zam in Mekkah, brought him on a night journey on a winged horse called Burrak, to pray in Jerusalem before he could go to heaven to meet Allah and the prophets. In memory of this event, the Muslims occupied this area around 690 and built the Dome of the Rock and a mosque called the Al Aqsa (the distant one). After Mekkah and Medina, Jerusalem is their third holiest site.

Unlike the Bible, the Qur'an does not specify whether it was Ishmael or Isaac who was being offered as sacrifice nor does the Quran mention that an animal (ram) was provided as a replacement for him, rather he was replaced with zibhin azeem. Arabic word 'zibhin' means “a sacrifice” while the word 'azeem' has been translated by various Islamic scholars as great, momentous, supreme, unique, sublime, mighty etc. Since the sacrifice of an animal cannot be momentous, unique, supreme  or greater than that of a son of Abraham who is also a prophet of Islam, this replacement or ransom seems to point directly to the unique sacrifice of Isa al Masih as a ransom for all sinners. (Genesis 22:5-14; Quran As Saffat 37:107)

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