I want to talk about an important subject to your understanding of the difference between Christianity and Islam. To understand the difference between the God of the Bible and the god of Islam (and don’t worry if you don’t…many don’t, especially the ones touting sameness between them) you have to be able to visualize three god groups: God, god, and false gods.
As I said, these are groups, not individuals. Bear with me.
In this group, there is but one Individual (actually a Trinity but we’re not going to get into that with this lesson). His name is Yehovah. He is the Creator God. It is He who Moses wrote about when he wrote “In the beginning, God…” in Genesis 1:1. And because this was the beginning, it stands to reason that there was nothing before this. You cannot have a race before the racegun announces the beginning of the race. A baby does not exist prior to conception. Nothing happens before the beginning…that’s a key point so lock that in.
In this group, there is but one individual also, and his name is Satan (it used to be Lucifer and we’re going to talk about him in a bit). Satan is called “the god of this world” by Paul, speaking of those who are lost:
“In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.”
2nd Corinthians 4:4
Think back to the beginning and our note that nothing existed prior to that. Actually, that’s only true of this earth as we know it because Heaven and all its glory, as well as the angels existed prior to the “beginning”. Scripture tells us that angels clapped for joy when God created the earth:
“Where were you when I laid the foundations of the earth? Tell Me, if you know so much. Who determined its dimensions and stretched out the surveying line? What supports its foundations, and who laid its cornerstone as the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy?”
One of those angels, an Archangel, was named Lucifer. He was the only angel to ever allow himself to be worshiped and he got into a lot of trouble for it. He wanted more than what he had, although he had been made to be the most perfect of creatures ever created by God:
“You were the model of perfection, full of wisdom and exquisite in beauty. You were in Eden, the garden of God. Your clothing was adorned with every precious stone—red carnelian, pale-green peridot, white moonstone, blue-green beryl, onyx, green jasper, blue lapis lazuli, turquoise, and emerald—all beautifully crafted for you and set in the finest gold. They were given to you on the day you were created. I ordained and anointed you as the mighty angelic guardian. You had access to the holy mountain of God and walked among the stones of fire. You were blameless in all you did from the day you were created until the day evil was found in you.”
Ezekiel 28:12-15 (NLT)
He wanted to be worshiped as if he was God and he allowed his thoughts to become his downfall:
“How you are fallen from heaven, O shining star, son of the morning! You have been thrown down to the earth, you who destroyed the nations of the world. For you said to yourself, ‘I will ascend to heaven and set my throne above God’s stars. I will preside on the mountain of the gods far away in the north. I will climb to the highest heavens and be like the Most High.’ Instead, you will be brought down to the place of the dead, down to its lowest depths.”
So Scripture truly shows us progression from perfection to the “lowest depths”, but Scripture also directly tells us that he is “the god of this world”. One more proof is in the temptations with which he tried to get Jesus to bow and worship him:
“Then the devil took Him up and revealed to Him all the kingdoms of the world in a moment of time. “I will give You the glory of these kingdoms and authority over them,” the devil said, “because they are mine to give to anyone I please. I will give it all to You if You will worship me.”
Remember that story? Of course you know the ending – Jesus called him on it his remarks and told him that He would only serve (the one true) God. But back to the offer that Satan made. He states, and Jesus does not refute, that he owns them (see the bold words above). This means, when combined with 2nd Corinthians 4:4, that he truly does have ownership of the nations, kingdoms, cities, or however we want to refer to them, of this world! He truly is the god of this world, and his influence is everywhere, even (and especially) in the church.
Group false gods
Finally, there is a group that really does contain more than one individual. This group, in fact, is so large that I cannot begin to name all the individuals who should be in this group, but I’m going to name a few of them that are listed in Scripture. You see, all of these groups are different in one very important aspect: God is true, Satan is a liar (and the father of them), and the false gods are exactly that – false (nonexistent). But this is only as true as the mind conceiving what is being read will allow. Here’s what I mean.
If you’re a Christian, you know well that Buddha is not God. You also know that the gods being worshiped in Greece when Paul visited were not God (with the exception, of course, of the “Unknown God” Whom Paul preached). But what do the people who worship these gods believe? Do they believe like you? If so, they’re going to drop these hot potato gods right now and accept Jesus as Savior and live for Him. Not too likely though, because they probably believe in their gods just as vehemently as you believe in Jesus Christ. Which means, then, that their gods, in their minds and in their opinion, are just as much god as God is to you, Christian. You and I cannot argue that point with them easily. We see clearly what Scripture says and we know that there is but one God, but those who worship otherwise believe the same about their situation.
We know from Scripture that other gods exist, even if only in the minds of other people. Why else would God command us not to speak the names of other gods?
“Pay close attention to all My instructions. You must not call on the name of any other gods. Do not even speak their names.”
Here’s a list of names that God has provided us in Scripture (and I reiterate, this list is not exhaustive but is intended merely to prove the point). Even a beginner Bible student will recognize the first one on the list, Baal.
Baal, Ashtoreth, Asherah, Dagon, Baalzebub, Rimmon, Chemosh, Molech, Succoth-benoth, Nergal, Ashima, Nibhaz, Tartak, Adrammelech, Hamoth, Arpad, Sepharvaim, Hena, Ivvah, Gozan, Haran, Rezeph, Eden or Telassar, Bel, Nebo, Nisroch
What does all of this have to do with “Jesus is NOT in the Quran”? There are counterfeit teachers in the world today (wolves in sheep’s clothing) who teach in opposition to this lesson, meaning they teach in opposition to the Bible itself. One of them is a senior Pastor in an organization leading the way for Chrislam. I spoke to him on the phone one day and we discussed this subject and I wanted to give you his viewpoint. He believes in one God (that’s good…so do I!). He says he worships the God of the Bible (indeed, the word “Bible” is in the name of his church) and he, if you listen to his message, sounds educated and Biblical. His sheep clothes fit him well (good tailor) as he spews Chrislam to his congregation and anyone else listening to him, not to mention the Muslim who may listen to him and decide to place his faith in the jesus of the Quran. When Pastors begin to preach outside of the Truths of Scripture, they should lose their “license” to preach, red flags should go up, people should be concerned and call them on their errors. But today’s church membership doesn’t know its Scripture well enough to know the difference so the wolves continue to preach erroneously and lead many down the wrong path. It feels good getting there, but in the end it will hurt.
So this pastor and I were talking about gods and he asked me if I believed in multiple gods. After explaining to him what I have just explained to you about the three groups, he proclaimed to me “You’re a Greek!” He said, and LISTEN TO THIS PART IF NOTHING ELSE, because there IS only one God and because the god of Islam is a god, he MUST be the one and only God. What heresy! What seminary did this guy attend that warped his understanding of Scripture so drastically? He believes there is only one god and, therefore, if Muslims call him god, he must be God! He further stated that the word “Allah” is merely the Arabic word for god and this fact, coupled with his “if there’s only one god he must be God” theory, means that the Muslim worships the same god as the God of the Bible. This was one of those moments in which it was literally impossible to pick my jaw up off the floor.
Too many characteristics of the god of Islam are clearly given in the Quran that prove that the two gods cannot be the same! Too many times the god of Islam allows heinous treatment of slaves, women, and children (sexual relations / marriages to very young girls and homosexual conduct with prepubescent boys), the lawful punishment and killing of wives and daughters, and he allows hateful acts against anyone who doesn’t conform to his “messenger” in order for us (even for this pastor) to turn a blind eye and state that, just because his name means “god” in Arabic, he must be God!
The god of Islam is a hateful, lying, murderous god without any love and who does not have a son.
Jesus is NOT in the Quran!