The danger before us is that we ask this with a superficial answer already in our minds. “Of course, Paul or one of the others corrupted it”, we quickly answer without thinking, mostly because this is simply what we have heard. Or, we can think, “Of course not! What a silly idea”, again without really knowing why but mostly because we have been taught that way. This is a danger for all people who ask questions about sacred Books. We dismiss it right away (because of how we have been taught to think). Alternatively, we dismiss the question. So let us think carefully through this.
New Testament Writers other than Paul
Let us start with the writers aside from Paul. These were the disciples of Isa (PBUH) – his companions. They followed him, listened to him, and discussed with him. They observed the things that he did and said, both privately and in public. Some of them, such as John, Matthew and Peter were part of the inner circle of Isa’s 12 closest followers. They wrote eight of the books in the New Testament. Others, such as Mark, were among his wider circle of followers. The remaining authors (outside of Paul) were his brothers James and Jude. They grew up with Isa (PBUH). James became the leader of the disciples in Jerusalem after the passing of Isa (PBUH) from this world.
Jewish historical writings of the 1st century CE actually mention James. In that century there was a great Jewish military historian, Josephus, who wrote several books of history. In one of his books, writing of events in Jerusalem in the year 62 CE (32 years after the passing of Isa) he writes fellow Jews martyred James, Isa’s brother. Read here how he puts it:
“Ananus [the high priest] was rash and followed the Sadducees, who are heartless when they sit in judgment. Ananus thought that with Festus dead and Albinus still on the way, he would have the opportunity. Convening the judges of the Sanhedrin [the Jewish ruling council] he brought before them a man named James, the brother of Jesus who was called the Christ, and certain others. He accused them of having transgressed the law, and condemned them to be stoned to death”Josephus. 93 CE. Antiquities xx 197
Josephus explains that in 62 CE the Roman rulers had just made Ananus the High Priest in Jerusalem. Political confusion followed. Ananus used the opportunity to condemn James to death. His father (also called Ananus) had sentenced Isa (PBUH) to death about 30 years before. Ananus the son quickly took the opportunity to do the same with James. Thus James was a target for his years of leading the followers of Isa al Masih (PBUH) his brother.
What does the Qur’an say about these disciples of Isa (PBUH)?
These men wrote the books in the New Testament (other than Paul’s books). To judge whether they corrupted the Injil we can first turn to the perspective given in the Qur’an. Examine the following ayat:
When Jesus found Unbelief on their part He said: “Who will be My helpers to (the work of) God?” Said the disciples: “We are God’s helpers: We believe in God, and do thou bear witness that we are Muslims. Our Lord! we believe in what Thou hast revealed, and we follow the Apostle; then write us down among those who bear witness.”Surat 3:52-53 – Al-Imran
And behold I inspired the Disciples to have faith in me and mine messenger (Isa): they said, “We have faith, and you bear witness that we bow to Allah as MuslimsSurat 5:111 – Table Spread
These ayat tell us quite plainly that the disciples of Isa (Jesus – PBUH) were:
- Isa al Masih’s helpers,
- Allah’s helpers,
- and inspired by Allah to have faith in Isa al Masih.
These disciples include Matthew, Peter and John. They wrote eight of the books in the New Testament, two of which are gospels (Gospels of Matthew and John). And Mark, the disciple in the wider circle, wrote a third gospel. If one believes in the Qur’an then one would also then have to accept the writings of these disciples. These writers certainly could not have corrupted the Injil. When we study the written gospels we read the writings of the disciples, which the Qur’an confirms. Paul did not write any Gospel account. Rather he wrote sacred letters.
So we find, whether from secular historical sources or from the Qur’an, logical reasons to accept the books of the New Testament that are not Paul’s.
The Witness of Isa (PBUH): the Taurat and Zabur are the first standards
But what about Isa al Masih himself? What did he give as the testimony we should accept? Notice where he appeals for a correct and uncorrupted witness to himself and his message.
He said to them, “How foolish you are, and how slow to believe all that the prophets have spoken! Did not the Messiah have to suffer these things and then enter his glory?” And beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he explained to them what was said in all the Scriptures concerning himself.Luke 24:25-27
He said to them, “This is what I told you while I was still with you: Everything must be fulfilled that is written about me in the Law of Moses, the Prophets and the Psalms.” Then he opened their minds so they could understand the Scriptures.Luke 24:44-45
If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me. But since you do not believe what he wrote, how are you going to believe what I say?”John 5: 46-47
Isa (PBUH) himself appeals to Moses (Taurat), then the Prophets and Psalms (Zabur) to explain the role of the Masih. This is why we begin with the Taurat. In the Signs of Adam, Cain&Abel, Noah, Lut, Ibrahim 1, 2, and 3 the verses all come from Taurat and the Qur’an.
We remain on safe ground if we start with the Taurat – Isa (PBUH) himself told us to. Here we learn the Signs that will help to unlock the mystery of the Injil. Then we will take what we have learned and compare it with the writings of the brothers and disciples of Isa.
And what about Paul’s writings? What are we to make of them? Once we have studied the Taurat and Zabur and learned the Signs that Allah has definitely sent us, and then when we have studied the books of the disciples and brothers of Isa (PBUH) we are knowledgeable enough so that if we turn to Paul, we will notice if what he writes is different from what we have already studied. Without this background knowledge of the ‘safe books’ to inform us, it is impossible for us to really know if what Paul wrote is corrupted or not. But to keep our search on safe ground we will not start with Paul because his credentials are not unquestionable.
But Isa al Masih did appear to Paul and assigned him to explain the Injil to non-Jews. This is recounted here. At that time, all the non-Jews were idol worshipers. So Paul explained the Injil in ways that the other apostles did not. The other apostles, like Peter, admitted that his writings were difficult to understand, but still were scripture. Peter says:
Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. 16 He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.2 Peter 3:15-16
Starting from what we know is Uncorrupted
Paul did not change or corrupt the gospel. His writings were accepted. But to avoid controversy, we start from writings which are beyond dispute (the Taurat and Zabur). Then we follow the four gospels, which were written by the companions of Isa al Masih (PBUH). We can learn so much from these books that for our purposes we do not need Paul’s writings.
Paul greater then Jesus and Moses ?
After Jesus returned to Heaven, the Rich and Powerful Paul claimed to have spoken to Jesus and then added to much of the later part of the GOspel we have today
Although we see from Paul’s writings, that he often differs from the Teachings of Moses and Jesus, and seems to have a hidden Motive for adding to the Gospel
“but to others I say, yes, I, not the lord….”(1 corin 7:12)
“I resolved also… to WRITE…” (luke 1:1,4)
“now concerning…I have NO command from the lord, but I give MY opinion…” (1 corin 7:25)
” therefore I think…” (I corin 7:26)
“…. According to MY opinion..”(1 corin 7:40)
” I certainly THINK…” (1 corin 7:40)
” see! I, PAUL, am telling you….”(galat 5:2)
‘Paul’ did not preach according to Christ but instead according to himself and his own opions.
This will help us to distinct from Jesus himself and the man ‘Paul’
It is all over the Bible that ‘Paul’ preached according to his own gospel, and Not the Gospel of Jesus.
“Remember Jesus Christ, risen from the dead, of the seed of David, according to my gospel:” 2 Timothy 2:8
Did God create ‘Paul’ from a miraculous birth? Were the Wise men expecting ‘Paul’, was ‘Paul’ one of the original disciples? Did ‘Paul’ ever see Jesus in the Flesh? No No No and No.
Have you ever found it odd that after Jesus spent all that time with His Disciples, his own Brothers and Friends who he Trusted and they grew to understant his mission and Parables, did you find it odd that Jesus would return unexpectedly and speak to ‘Paul’ and tell ‘Paul’ to tell everyone that the ‘Law of Moses is a Curse’?
As a matter of fact, his purpose for makeing his own Gospel was that he could remove works to convert more gentiles, ‘Paul’ says;
“What then is my reward? That, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel without charge, so as not to use to the full my right in the gospel.” 1 Corinthians 9:18
The current Translations say a “without charge” in Greek it says “adapanos”, this word is only used one time in the entire Gospel and could mean “Free from Works”
This Meaning is confirmed in the very next verses that Paul removed the Laws to convert more gentiles;
“For though I am free from all men, I have made myself a slave to all, that I might win the more.” 1 Corinthians 9:19
“To the Jews I became as a Jew, in order to win Jews; to those under the law I became as one under the law–though not being myself under the law–that I might win those under the law. 9:20
“To those outside the law I became as one outside the law–not being without law toward God but under the law of Christ–that I might win those outside the law.”
If any one is familiar with the Gospel, they would know there is no such thing as the ‘Law of Christ’ according to Jesus himself;
“He that loveth me not keepeth not my words: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s who sent me.” John 14:24
Jesus Clarifies that the Law is not his, it is God’s only, the Only Law is God’s Law, and there is no such thing as Christs Law as ‘Paul’ Admits he does not follow God’s Law and Makes up this term ‘Christ’s Law’ which Jesus himself denies.
Pual wrote the Gospel to make it free from the the Law of God as he himself admits he did not follow the Laws of God.
Therefore Paul was makeing a anti-God gospel and used Christ as a scapegoat, God leaves it up to us to recognize the contradictions between ‘Paul’ and “Jesus”
We see here that Paul was against the Law;
“But now we are Delivered form the Law” (Rom 7:6)
“A man is not justified by works of the Law, but by faith f Jesus Christ” (Gal. 2:16)
“For as many as are of the works of the Law are Under the Curse” (Gal. 3:10)
“In that He said “A new covenant He had mand the first Old. now that which Decayeth and waxeht Old is ready to Vanish Away.” (Heb. 8:13)
What does Jesus say about such a man?
“Whoever then relaxes one of the least of these commandments and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but he who does them and teaches them shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” Matthew 5:19
‘Paul’ not only taught men that the commandments are ole, a curse, vanishing, will not deliver, will not justify, etc.., but Also Admits that he himself did not follow the commandments of God but makes up a term called ‘commandments of Christ’ Which There are No Such Thing According to Jesus.
To summarize, ‘Paul’ made a gospel free from works to convert more gentiles in consicuence contradicting Jesus and upseting Jesus’s disciples;
“And they are informed of thee, that thou teachest all the Jews which are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses, saying that they ought not to circumcise [their] children, neither to walk after the customs.” Acts 21:21
Do you think any God loveing Jew would tell people to forsake Moses, but ‘Paul’ did as the Disciples were complaining because he wanted to convert Gentiles. Did Jesus preach to Forsake the Laws of Moses Or to Keep the Commandments?
Paul admits there is confusion and mystery in the Gospel of Jesus and says that he himself will fill in the blanks;
“And on my behalf, that utterance may be given unto me in opening my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel,” Ephesians 6:19
Thus he used his status and wealth to spread his gospel.
‘Paul’s’ inspiration Does Not comes from divine authority
If you consider ‘Paul’ a Saint, then why does he Admit that the Spirit of Evil is in his body? Also admiting that he is doing Evil and not incontrol of himslef all while writing his gospel.
“If then I do that which I would not, I consent unto the law that [it is] good. Now then it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me.
“For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but [how] to perform that which is good I find not. For the good that I would I do not: but the evil which I would not, that I do.”
“Now if I do that I would not, it is no more I that do it, but sin that dwelleth in me. I find then a law, that, when I would do good, evil is present with me.” (Rom 7:16-21
It suprizes me that Christians would take the words of a man who admits he is evil and does not follow the Laws of God and yet, ignore the Teachings of Jesus who was Sent By God.
Copyright (c) 1998 Mohamed Ghounem & Abdur Rahman
You seem to have studied (or probably copied and pasted in from another site without studying) the writings of Paul. One small correction… Paul was not rich and powerful. He was when he was ‘Saul’, but he left all that behind when he became ‘Paul’. But that is an aside. The question before us is: “Can we learn of the Injil, Taurat & Zabur without going to the writings of Paul?” And the answer is an easy-to-determine and resounding ‘YES’. The writings of Paul are not at all in the Taurat, not in the Zabur. Not even a word. And they are not in the Gospels. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John were not written by Paul. Paul wrote personal letters which are included in the New Testament. You want to debate the merits of that. But why debate that when there is so much material that is not Pauline with which to start to gain an understanding of Jesus and the gospel? It seems more like you want to argue rather than learn from the part which we can readily accept. It is like wanting to debate the merits of a certain haddith that some scholars approve and others do not – without even bothering to read the writings that all accept.
Well, dear friends, remember one thing. Paul was visited by a vision of Jesus when he (Paul), as a Jew, was on his way to have more Christians crucified. Such did his faith become in Jesus that he, Paul himself, was prepared to suffer and eventually die to honour prophet Jesus. The Holy Spirit guided him to increase the faith of the believers, who all had different opinions of the true message of prophet Jesus – including the original disciples themselves. Let us not condemn Paul, a man of true faith. A man who submitted to the will of God. Yes, Paul admitted he was sinful. Something we all should do. Jesus Himself died so that sins would be forgiven. That was His mission. The Gospel makes that clear. That is why they crucified Him. They did not believe Him. Paul did.