What Does Islam Say About Religious Diversity?

18 February, 2018
Q Is there a statement about Islam's view of religious diversity? Would such statements, if there are any, be different depending on the branch of Islam? Such as Christian denominations have different views, i.e. Baptist, Presbyterian, Lutheran. If you are not the ones to ask, where should I go?

Answer

Short Answer: Islam holds that from the beginning, God has been sending prophets to different peoples at different stages in human history to give them divine guidance as to how to live this life. Muhammad never claimed that he was teaching a new religion; he said that his mission was to restore the pure religion, taught by all the previous prophets and to complete the prophetic chain.

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Hello Eileen and Peace be with you!

Thank you for contacting About Islam with your question.

There is indeed a very clear Islamic view of religious diversity. In this, there is consensus among the scholars of various sects in Islam, too.

Islam is Not a New Religion

Islam holds that from the beginning of mankind on the face of the earth, God has been sending prophets to different peoples at different stages in human history, to give the people divine guidance as to how to live this life.

These prophets include Abraham, Moses, David and Jesus. And Muhammad was the last of these prophets (peace be upon them all).

Muhammad never claimed that he was teaching a new religion; he said that his mission was to restore the pure religion, taught by all the previous prophets and to complete the prophetic chain.

On this basis, Muslims believe in the divine origin of all religions.

According to Islam, the differences that exist among religions are the result of misinterpretations and deviations, which have taken place over centuries.

Islam holds that the Quran is the final version of the Scripture of God, and that it has been protected from corruption for all time.

Hence, a Muslim could ask a Christian, for example, to return to the teachings of Jesus, giving up the additions to Christianity after the time of Jesus.

If they do so, they will arrive at the pure religion taught by Jesus, which is Islam itself.

Notice that the word ‘Islam’ means ‘peace through submission to God’.

Remember Christ’s statement:

Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I do not come to destroy, but to fulfill. (Matthew: 5:17)

And what did Christ say is the way to eternal life?

And, behold, one came and said unto him: ‘Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?’ And he said unto him: ‘Why callest thou me good? There is none good but one, that is, God: but if thou wilt enter into life, keep the commandments.’ He said unto him: ‘Which?’ Jesus said: ‘Thou shalt do no murder, thou shalt not commit adultery, thou shalt not steal, thou shalt not bear false witness, honor thy father and thy mother: and, thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.’ (Matt. 5: 17-19)

Obviously here, Jesus gave the same answer Moses would have given to the question, that is: ’Keep the commandments.

Muhammad (peace be upon him) endorses the same answer.

Whereas, the Christians of the present day have forgotten the simple teachings of Jesus and they go after the muddle of the Trinitarian belief and the concept of vicarious atonement through God’s own death! Or else, the Son’s death!

Since, as they believe, the Son is the same as the Father, how can anyone say that God did not die, if they accept such Christian beliefs?

In fact, these are pagan ideas introduced into Christianity by Saul of Tarsus, who holds greater sway in Christendom now than Jesus, as St. Paul.

I hope I have answered your question. Please keep in touch.

May God bless us and lead us along the straight path to Him!

And peace be with you.

(From Ask About Islam archive)

Please continue feeding your curiosity, and find more info in the following links:

https://aboutislam.net/counseling/ask-about-islam/diversity-islam-not-malady/

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