238 The CORÂN

He is cautioned against the neglect or disbelief of it, lest he incur the "ignominious punishment (عذاباً مهيناً) which God hath prepared for the unbelievers," for them "that believe in a part and reject a part" of God's word.—Art. CII. He is warned against refusing to acknowledge that "perspicuous Book," which is "a light to lighten mankind, a guide and a direction, an admonition to the pious,—to them that fear the Lord in secret and tremble at the hour of judgment";—that Revelation which is "complete as to whatever is excellent, and an explanation of every matter, and a mercy, that men may believe in the meeting of their Lord"; for if he does thus reject it, according to the verdict of his own Prophet, "verily he hath wandered into a wide and fatal error," قد ضل ضلالاً بعيداً . Above all let him beware of blaspheming (like some of the degenerate Mussulmans of the present day) that holy Book, and of thus sealing his doom as "a transgressing and flagitious Unbeliever."—Art. CXXIV.

What fearful audacity is displayed by some of the modern Mahometans (unworthy disciples in this respect of their Prophet!) who ignorantly and blasphemously speak against "the Book which God hath sent down, "the holy "Forcân," "the Word of God"!

As for ourselves, the People of the Book, it is only in conformity with the express inculcation of the Prophet of Islâm, that we observe, and hold by, both the Law and the Gospel (Art. CXXVII.); and that, in accordance with his challenge, we examine those


Scriptures to which he appealed before the people of Arabia as his witness, to see whether or no they bear testimony to his mission. And it is the sacred duty of every Mussulman, in order that he may guard against the possibility of fatal deception, to do the same.

Lastly; all honest Moslems are called on to believe, for they cannot consistently disbelieve, that these Scriptures are the inspired "Word of God" (كلام الله) "that they are a light to lighten Mankind," (نوراً وهدى للناس) "an illumination and admonition to the Pious" (ضياً وذكراً للمتقين); in fine, that they are calculated to lead those that follow their precepts into the way of peace, and make them wise unto salvation. Why, then, will they neglect so precious a source of spiritual benefit as (the Corân itself being judge) exists in the Old and New Testaments, and shut themselves out from their illumination? Let them search the Scriptures diligently, and they will find the whole tenor of those sacred Books to be "that God is in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself";— that Jesus is "the Way, the Truth, and the Life"; "This is life eternal, that they might know Thee, the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom Thou hast sent."