A Historical Critique on Islam’s Beginnings
Hong Kong, October 2017
Jay Smith: Topics, not just because they are new.
They are controversial, but they had not been really, really done before.
These are so new.
Some of the materials that we introduced on Wednesday were only a few weeks old.
And that’s why we want to get ourselves in the public sphere.
And that’s why we chose Hong Kong as a place that’s a springboard to get this, not only so that you can hear it, but also filming it, so it will immediately go up onto YouTube, because we want people all over the world to hear this new material.
And we want to make sure that we do debate this material because it’s so new.
That’s why the Muslims did not want to debate it.
Even in England I know that many of the Muslims who are probably watching this from there.
They have been sending emails to the Muslims here in Hong Kong on how to try to confront these ideas, especially the material that I’m going to introduce today.
What we did on Wednesday is probably, I feel that Achilles’ heel of Islam.
We really did confront the Qur’an historically.
And this is what every religion has to do.
Every religion requires, if it makes a religious claim as both Islam and Christianity do, so do the Sikhs, so do the Buddhists, so do the Hindus and even new …, so do the Taoists and the atheists.
We all make historical claims.
When you make a historical claim, you have to investigate it.
You have to look at names, dates, places, events.
Those are the four historical areas that you have to investigate.
So far, the Bible has only been investigated in those four areas.
We have had almost 100 to 150 years of investigation on the Bible itself, redaction criticism, source criticism, historical criticism, literary criticism, the documentary hypothesis.
These are well-known criticisms that have been around since the 1800s.
The Qur’an for the first time is going under that kind of scrutiny.
That was the material that we introduced on Wednesday night and the Muslims did not want to debate.
Very few Muslims showed up.
This is going up now so that thousands and millions of Muslims can now see it, but what we are saying to Muslims is, don’t stop there.
Listen to these criticisms, take them onboard, go back and ask and try to find out if you can find any answers to these criticisms, like we have.
As Christians, we have found our answers to everything all over our Bible.
We have been able now.
We pretty well know the source criticism.
We know how to answer the redaction criticism.
We – the documentary hypothesis has not even been taught because we have responded to every one of those criticisms.
Because when the Bible does talk about history, when it talks about a certain person doing a certain thing at a certain place, at a certain time, in every case the Bible has been proven to be correct, so much so that today there is not one artifact, there is not one mural, there is not one cellar, there is not one obelisk, there is not one tablet, anywhere in the world that we can find that controverts a properly understood Biblical statement.
Let me repeat that.
Today there is not one piece of historical artifact anywhere in the world that controverts a properly understood Biblical statement.
And the Bible is the only book of history that can make that claim.
So now we are turning the tables and we are now asking the same of Islam.
And that’s my area of expertise.
I’m an Islamicist.
Some of the material that we are going to introduce tonight comes out of my doctoral thesis, but much of it, I have nothing to do with.
Most, everything I’m going to introduce tonight, I have nothing to do with.
And what you’re going to see tonight – this is not a Christian polemic.
This is not a Christian attack against Islam.
This is a historical polemic.
That’s what we call it, a Historical Critique.
This is the same critique that must be done on the Bhagvad Gita, the Upanishads, the Vedas, you name it.
Any religious text or any religious edifice should have this critique done to it.
Christianity is way ahead of the rest of the world.
That’s why it’s so – it makes my job so much easier.
I didn’t have this kind of material 35 years ago when I started working in the Islamic world.
I didn’t have what I’m going to show you today.
Nobody has showed you on Wednesday night.
This never was available to me when I started this whole endeavor of working in Islam.
That’s why we want to make sure that this is not only offered to you here in Hong Kong.
Everyone and I’m talking to people who are watching this, all of you can now use this material and Muslims engage with it.
So, have many debates on it.
Maybe this will be the beginning of many new enterprises, but what we are really hoping is that Muslims take on board the implications of what we are doing today.
I will talk of those implications as we move on.
So, let’s go ahead and let’s get into this talk today.
What do Muslims claim about themselves?
Well, they will say that Muhammad is the last and greatest prophet.
I don’t think any Muslim will decry that.
They would assume whether they are conservative, nominal, liberal.
They would all agree that Muhammad is the last prophet, the greatest prophet, the seal of all the prophets.
They will say the Qur’an was his revelation, sent down only to him and is the final and greatest revelation, that he received it over a period of 23 years from 610 to 632, and that then was compiled completely at the time of Uthman, about roughly 20 years after he died, and that it’s never changed, and that Islam as a religion is the final religion based on Muhammad’s life and sayings (the Sunnah) and on the Qur’an’s teaching.
So, it’s based on a book and a man, a book and a man.
I’ve said this, many times this week.
That’s their claim.
Conclusion is Islam is completely dependent therefore on one book modeled by one man.
And we as Christians would say much the same thing.
We are also modeled on a bigger book modeled by a bigger man, the Bible and Jesus Christ.
Therefore, since it’s modeled by one book and one man, we need to investigate that man and we need to investigate that book and see indeed if Muslims are correct.
Now what is the classical account concerning Muhammad?
What we have known about Muhammad is that he was born in 570 AD.
No one has ever disputed that.
This is the classical account.
This is the account you’re going to hear and every school has been.
Everywhere you go this is what I have been taught.
And for 35 years I’ve always assumed this is correct, born in 570 to a mother named Aminah.
His father had already died, Abdullah.
So, he was born to a widow.
In 610 he was up at the Hira Cave and he suddenly met an individual, he didn’t know who it was at the time, appeared to him and said
It means “Recite”.
And his response was,
“I cannot recite.”
That happened in 610, in Hira Cave.
He came back and told his wife what had happened.
She gave him three different tests to see if he was telling the truth.
And after he passed all three of those tests, she took him to her cousin named Waraqah ibn Nawfal.
He wanted to hear this story.
He was a Nestorian Christian, one of the ironies of history.
And he said
“Truly are you a prophet for what you have just referred to me.”
And that’s why it was a Nestorian Christian, who actually gave Muhammad his authority as a prophet.
That happened in 610.
From 610 to 622 then Muhammad started receiving what we know as the “Meccan Revelations” or the Meccan Suras.
These are the second half or the latter half of the Qur’an.
In 621 he gets woken up at the middle of the night.
And he’s told to get on the back of a winged horse, called the Burāq.
And he flies from Mecca up to Jerusalem.
And from Jerusalem he then goes up the seven heavens to meet with Allah, who tells him to pray 50 times a day.
He comes down to the fifth heaven.
Muhammad then bumps into Moses.
And Moses said,
“See if you can get it down.”
So, he goes back and forth between the seventh and the fifth heaven, getting down the prayers from 50 to 45, to 40, 35, 20, 15, fighting down to five prayers.
Once he gets to the five prayers with Moses, that’s when he goes back down to earth.
So, he comes back down to Jerusalem where the Dome of the Rock is.
And then he flies back down to Mecca in 621, known as the Mi’raj.
That is the story that is accounted.
That is referred to by Muslims today.
That is why they believe.
The Dome of the Rock was built to commemorate that event in 621.
In 622 he goes with about anywhere from 80 to 200 of his disciples.
We don’t know for sure because there are many different contradictions, the journey and the exact number.
He goes with these disciples, and he then goes and moves up to Medina.
That’s known as the “Hijra”.
The “Hijra” means the exodus.
So, he goes to take this exodus from Mecca to Medina.
And then from 622 to 632, the last 10 years of his life, he receives the “Medinan Revelations”.
He’s now living in Medina.
That’s why it’s given its name referring to the city he lived in.
That’s the second half of the Qur’an.
That’s the “Medinan Revelations”.
In 630 he then marches down and walks right into Mecca and takes it over without firing a shot.
He took it over peacefully.
That happened in 630.
And then in 632 he died possibly by poisoning, we don’t know.
At that time the Qur’an had not been written down in complete form.
It had been memorized by many of the followers of Muhammad.
Part of it was written on stones and bones and pieces of bark, but it had not been written as a codified text.
So, this book that I have in my hand here was not written down in this form in 632 when Muhammad died.
And that we saw very clearly when we unpacked it on Wednesday night.
Abu Bakr then takes over control as the first Caliph from 622 to 634.
During his reign, the Qur’an was first written down by Zayd ibn Thabit.
That happened between 632 and 634.
He dies peacefully.
And Umar takes over and he reigns from 634 to 644.
In the next 10 years, he is killed.
And then Uthman takes over.
And from 644 to 656, for the next 12 years, much of the recension for this Qur’an supposedly was written down.
This is known as the Uthmani script.
We very well discovered that on Wednesday, this is not the Uthmani script.
This is only 93 years old.
This is the Al-Azhar, the Hafs texts as well known, created just 93 years ago in 1924.
Then in 655 and 656 Uthman was killed.
And so, Ali, the adopted son of Muhammad, then takes over from 656 to 661, but last five years.
He only lasts five years, and then he is killed by Muawiyah and the Umayyad.
Now that is known as the classical account.
That’s what we know and have been told.
There may be some variations.
I’ve met an awful lot.
I’ve just given you the bare skeleton of what we know as the classical account.
Is it true?
Can you prove that this is true?
How would you want to prove that this is true?
Maybe that’s the better question.
Well I would suppose and I would hope that somebody was there to see each event, someone who actually knew Muhammad, wrote about these events, wouldn’t you?
Everything I have just told you in the last 10 minutes referring to all that you see up here on the screen, all of it, though it took place in these parts, in this red area, none of it was written down in that time.
None of this was written down during the time of Muhammad at all.
None of it was written down in the same century as Muhammad.
None of it was written down during this period, or this period, or this period.
In order to find out everything I have just told you, in order to find out where these stories come from, you need to go to this period.
And the first person to write down the story of Muhammad, the Sira, is named Ibn Ishaq.
Ibn Ishaq died in 765, right here.
We don’t have of Ibn Ishaq’s material.
It doesn’t exist today.
There’s nothing extant from Ibn Ishaq.
We are only told about it by this man here, Ibn Hisham.
Ibn Hisham dies in 833, so he dies in the ninth century.
Everything we know about Muhammad, what he did, what he was doing in Medina, what he was doing in Mecca, all these stories that we’ve just talked about, the entire classical account about who Muhammad was and how Islam began, is first written down in the ninth century.
Muhammad died in the sixth – I’m sorry, in the seventh century.
Do you have a problem with that?
You should all be saying in your head
“Yes, we all have a problem with that.”
I have a problem with that.
What about Muhammad’s sayings, because that’s even more problematic?
If you want to go to Muhammad’s sayings you need to go to this man here, al-Bukhari.
He dies in 870.
He’s the first to write down what Muhammad said.
He was given 600,000 of his sayings.
He then went to – and throws out 98% of them, only retained around 7,400.
That means only retained 2% of it, threw out the other 98%.
And that’s what we have today as the Sahih al-Bukhari.
Sahih al-Bukhari, the most authoritative – it’s called Sahih.
That means it is perfect without error.
But take a look when it was written down.
It was written around way over here, in the late ninth century.
That’s 240 years after Muhammad’s death.
If you want to get the other Hadiths, like Sahih Muslim, or Ibn Dawood, or even al-Tirmidhi, they all come after al-Bukhari.
Al-Bukhari is the first.
If you want to talk about the Tafsir, which means the commentaries on this book, you need to go to al-Tabari.
And al-Tabari is right here.
He died in 920.
That’s the 10th century.
That’s 300 years later.
Now the many other Tafsir that come after him and not before him, he is the first to write down the commentaries and also the history, the Tafsir, all of these come – begin with al-Tabari, al-Baidawi, Zamakhshari, many will come after, but none of them come before al-Tabari.
So basically, everything we’re looking at here, everything that happens here doesn’t get written down until here, roughly two to three hundred years later.
Now if you look at the Bible, we know when Jesus dies, 33 AD.
When He dies in 33 AD, we almost have immediately Paul’s letters.
Within 15 years of Christ’s death, Paul begins to write his letters, so he was writing in the same century.
He was also writing in the same time that Jesus lived, though he never knew Jesus.
But then you start getting the Gospel accounts.
We have Matthew, Mark and Luke written within 20 to 30 years of Christ’s death, at the latest 40 years of Christ’s death.
And then you have the Gospel of John written in the late first century, about 92 AD, so you have that within 60 years of Christ’s death.
Two of those four Gospel writers actually knew Jesus Christ.
They actually saw Jesus Christ.
They actually lived with Jesus Christ for three years.
John and Matthew spent the last three years of His life with them so these are eyewitness accounts.
The other two got it from the eyewitnesses.
And that’s why we can trust them, because of the fact that so much of what they wrote, they actually participated in.
All of the New Testament, including His life and His sayings, were written within the first century, within 60 years of Christ’s death.
When you do a comparison, when you look at how Christianity began and who began it and about the life of Jesus Himself, that’s written within 15 to 60 years of Christ’s death.
When you look at Islam and Muhammad and how he began and what he did and how Islam began, that’s written within 200 to 300 years later.
Which is more authoritative?
And that’s why we are asking this question today.
If we were dependent on knowing who Jesus is using the same criteria that Islam is dependent on, we would know nothing about Jesus Christ till the third century.
How could we defend it?
How could we support it?
How could we say we knew anything He did or anything He said?
None of us could.
And yet Muslims have not talked about this.
This is the elephant in the room that Muslims don’t want to talk about.
Everything they know about Muhammad comes from two to three hundred years later.
Now, the 21st century scholars legitimately and rightly so are concerned about this, and they are saying
“Islam, as we know it, did not exist in the 7th century, but evolved over a period of 200-300 years.”
“The Qur’an probably was not revealed to one man in 22 years, but likely evolved over a period of 50-100 years.”
“The history of Islam, at least from the time of the caliph Abd al-Malik,”
That’s very important.
His name is going to come up again today.
“and before, is a later fabrication.”
You can see now why they are saying this.
As historians, there is a real problem they’re having.
Here are the problems.
If so, much of the history of early Islam was written down so late, then:
Why did it take so long to write it down?
Muslims have always come back and said they are not literate.
That’s why they didn’t write down.
They claim Muhammad was not literate, but you cannot tell me that the Muslims did not know how to read and write.
We know that by 661 they had controlled all of North Africa, going over the West and all the way over to India, and by 652 they controlled Basra, Cairo, Damascus, Jerusalem.
Are you saying no one could write in Basra, Damascus, Jerusalem and Cairo in the seventh century?
What are you going to do with a beautiful library that was in Alexandra that was burnt to the ground in the fifth century?
What about Zayd ibn Thabit, the secretary of Muhammad?
He was a secretary.
What do secretaries do?
They write, otherwise what’s their purpose?
So, you cannot tell me people could not read or write then.
Maybe Muhammad didn’t read or write, but everybody around him read and wrote.
Where did the ninth century biographers therefore get the material from?
If they were not living at that time, if they were living hundreds of miles away and hundreds of years later, how did they know what really happened and what and where did the material come from?
Now Muslims will tell you that they come from what they call “Isnād”.
So, before every Matn there’s a list of names, “so and so”, “so and so”, “so and so” and the prophet himself.
The problem with every one of those “so and so”, they never wrote down anything that they said, or that they sent up.
So therefore, we have no idea whether or not any of the names which are attributed to those sayings are true.
And basically, what we are looking at is a religion based on oral tradition.
Now, I don’t trust oral tradition.
If I tell this gentleman something, he tells him, he tells him and he tells him.
By the time it gets over to this woman over here, what I told him and what she tells me are probably two different things.
We play Chinese whispers, sorry if that’s – I hope that’s not offensive, but that’s what we do at birthday parties and/or telephone.
It’s a very fun game to play and within a fifth man out of 15 minutes the story gets changed.
Can you imagine if that story goes for 200 years, how it will get changed and how it will get embellished?
Can you see the difficulty?
That’s the problem of oral tradition.
If nothing is written down then how do we know what whether any of the “so and so”, what they said is correct?
Therefore, since we have to wait two to three hundred years, shouldn’t we go to the period these events took place?
Let’s go back to the seventh century and see what we find.
And this is what they’re finding.
That’s what we are going to unpack today.
Now let’s take a look at the map so you know what we are talking about.
This is the part of the world, about 661 this is the part of the world that they controlled.
They quickly went right across North Africa, destroyed the church as they went and they went and took over Andalusia, which is today’s Spain.
The other way, they were moving this direction over here towards the Persian world, all the way into what then became the Mogul Empire and of course India and Pakistan and then further afield Bangladesh today.
So that whole swathe of land soon became under their control by the late seventh century.
Now, the people that I’m going to be using for this material – this is not my material.
Let me repeat that again, this is not my material.
I’m nothing more than a messenger.
I’m nothing more than the one who’ll communicate it to you.
I’m not capable of doing this kind of research.
You will see why, but the ones who have done this research, people like Dr. John Wansborough, he was the first one that taught me this material.
He was Head of department at School of Oriental and African Studies in the University of London when I started taking these courses in 2004 – I’m sorry, 1994.
Let’s get my date straight.
I’m much older than I realized.
1994, my goodness, I feel old.
That’s 23 years ago that I started.
For 23 years I’ve been working with this material.
And he was the one that first opened me up to it.
And he was one that was amazing because he was taking what everybody else was saying and he was putting it into layman’s terminology.
That’s not – I got the wrong person.
That’s the next man, Hawting.
Dr. Wansborough is the one that was in charge and responsible there at School of Oriental and African Studies.
He’s the one that wrote two books called “Quranic Studies” and “Sectarian Milieu”.
These two books in 1977 and 1978 abrasively blew open this whole problem.
And he was the first one to actually look at the Qur’an literalistically and said
“We’ve got a real problem.
This book has a lot of stories that would not have made any sense that early.
This could have only have been written at a much later date.”
Dr. Gerald Hawting is the one that taught me.
Gerald Hawting, I accredit with much of the material that I have today because he got me interested in it.
That’s why I have been working with this material for almost 25 years.
Dr. Patricia Crone, I got to know her.
She was my supervisor when I began my doctorate back in the 1990s, my first doctorate.
And she said – and she was working there in Oxford University to begin with and then she wrote a book in 1975 called “Hagarism”.
She got death threats for that book.
And so, she moved from Oxford over to Cambridge.
And that’s where I got to know her.
And when I did my first debate on this material in 1995, that’s 22 years ago I did my first debate on this material, in 1995 I went up to her and she was the one, yes, that helped me put that debate together.
Dr. Patricia Crone reads and writes 15 languages, all archaic languages.
These are not modern languages.
These are, many of them are unknown today.
She is one of the few in the world that can read and write in all 15 languages.
She’s from Denmark.
She has just died.
She died a year ago, but there’s nobody that can equal her anywhere in the world.
And that’s why she’s so dangerous, because she goes back to the original texts.
She goes back to the original writing.
She’s a linguist.
Dr. Andrew Rippin from Calgary, he just died a few months ago.
He was also a good man.
What he did is he took all this very academic material and brought it into layman’s terminology, so when you read this material it’s much easier to read, out of Calgary in Canada.
Dr. Robert Hoyland out of Oxford University, he reads and writes 18 languages.
I got to know him when he was at Cambridge University and it was amazing to see what he could do and what he could find.
He was the one that probably took all the surrounding material that was happening in the seventh and eighth centuries and put it into a book called “Islam as Others See It”.
Dr. Nava Nevo, out of “Jerusalem: Crossroads to Islam”, was the one that actually went back to the early inscriptions and actually translated the inscriptions so we could read them today, showing what kind of documentation material we had in the seventh and eighth centuries.
And then from Germany we have Dr. Günter Luling, Dr. Gerd Puin, Dr. Von Bothmer and Dr. Ohlig, these four major scholars.
These are probably the most authoritative scholars when it comes to the Arabic material and also the Syriac material.
That’s why they’ve been so valuable, but these have not been better.
You’re getting the best scholars in the world here who have been working on this material, so I’m offering you the best.
Every one of these men are the top-of-the-field and women, but then there’ve been two books that have come out to try to unpack these, these older writings because these are academics.
And as is well-known academics are hopeless communicators.
They have a lot up here, but they are not good at communicating what they have.
They are boring as ever to listen to and they don’t even understand how to popularize it so the rest of us can understand it.
Dr. Patricia Crone is well known for writing essay after essay where she writes and she keeps her quotations in the original language which none of us can understand.
So, you need people like Tom Holland.
Dr. Tom Holland is a literary major from Cambridge University and he was the first one to take this material and popularize it in a book called “In the Shadow of the sword”.
If you have a chance, go get the book.
It was first published in 2012, taking much of this very difficult academic material and putting it into layman’s terminology.
He then put together a documentary called “Islam, The Untold Story”.
It was shown on Channel 4 News, Channel 4 Television, in Britain on August 28th 2012 at 9 pm, taking everything, he could in that book and putting it into a 90-minute documentary.
Now of course he did, he had to go very quick and very shallow into much and came to no conclusions, purposely did not want to come to any conclusions.
Yet because of that filming, when they wanted to redo that filming, when they wanted to show it a second time in November of the same year, there are so many Muslims protested against that movie that they’ve never shown it a second time.
That’s how damaging that documentary is.
You cannot watch that documentary here in Hong Kong, but I’ve got it on my computer.
If any of you want it, just ask me and I’ll give it to you.
You can watch it tonight.
You need to watch the video.
You need to look at the documentary because this is the material, I think that is the most damaging for Islam, historically.
But there has been some other material that has come up by this man here.
Dr. Dan Gibson is an archeologist.
You might say he is the “Indiana Jones” of today.
His father was an archeologist.
His grandfather was an archeologist.
He spent 25 years living in the Middle East, living amongst the Bedouin, learning the languages, went to as many places as he could find in this book, in the Qur’an, wanted to find it and physically go there.
And so, he spent from 1979 to 2004 learning to live, to walk where he thought Muhammad had walked.
The only problem is, and you’ll see later, he found a whole lot of difficulty, but we are going to introduce two of his books, one called – two books and one documentary,
One called “Qur’anic Geography”, which came out in 2011, a documentary called “The Sacred city” came out in May 2016, and then this book.
This book has just come out.
If you get a chance, get it.
“Early Islamic Qiblas” just came out in May of this year.
This is probably the most damaging book right here.
This is a combination of 25 years of research.
It’s only been out for four months and we are going to be introducing some of his findings from that book tonight.
And what he asked is
“Really, did Islam actually begin as Muslims have told us?
“Is there a city of Mecca?”
“Was that the original Holy City?”
“Did the Qibla originally face Mecca?”
“And what about all the geographical incongruities in the Qur’an itself?”
Now, I’m going to give you their conclusions before I even show you how they came to this.
Let’s start with their conclusions.
These are the conclusions these scholars have found.
First of all, they say that the 1st Arab inscription referencing Muhammad does not exist until 691.
We know nothing about Muhammad’s name from any Muslim sources.
Did I say “Muslim”?
From any Arab sources, there is no reference to Muhammad in any Arab sources prior to 691.
The first reference to people called Muslims is not till the 690s.
Remember, Muhammad died in 632.
That means in 60 years after Muhammad’s death, there are no Arab sources, literary, inscription on buildings that refers to his name.
The first reference to a religion called Islam is not until 691.
It is first introduced on the Dome of the Rock there in Jerusalem.
The first reference to Mecca, the City of Mecca is not till 741.
Think that through.
Muhammad died there supposedly, in Medina – had been living in Mecca, died in Medina in 632.
There is no reference to that city anywhere in the century that he lived and the first biography of Muhammad, as you already heard, within Islamic sources is not until 833.
So, what did these people call themselves if they didn’t call themselves Muslims?
From all the sources we can find, there were Arabs there.
They did exist.
They were conquering these cities, but they never called themselves Muslims.
They called themselves Saracens.
They called themselves Hagarenes because they were in the line of Hagar.
They called themselves Ishmaelites because they were in the line of Ishmael.
They called themselves Maghraye, because they were from Maghreb.
And they called themselves Muhajiroun.
That means people of the Hijra, people of the Exodus.
They were nomadic.
They were moving from one place to another.
That’s why they used those terms.
But nowhere in any of their documentation do we find them referring to themselves as Muslims.
So, let’s go to the first problem.
And the first problem is geography itself.
When you read the Qur’an, there are 65 geographical names or geographical places that are referred to in this book.
But we find over and over again nine places are named, nine different places are named.
We know of 23 references to the people from ‘Ad, which is the Biblical ‘Uz.
We have 24 references to the people from Thamud, which is the other name for the Nabateans.
They cut dwellings into mountains, things like that.
We have seven references to the people from Midian.
So therefore, these people from ‘Ad, Thamud and Midian must be pretty important if they are having this much contact with this prophet, but there is no reference in any of this to a place called Mecca.
Yet take a look and see where ‘Ad, Thamud and Midian are.
The people from ‘Ad, Thamud and Midian are where?
Mecca was way down here.
There’s 600 miles between these two unless this prophet – you know why I’m saying “This prophet,” because in the Qur’an you will only find Muhammad’s name four times in the Arabic.
Only in English he’s been added there.
Every time it says “the prophet” or the “the representative of God” or the “Nabi, Nabi of Allah” it’s always, in parentheses, Muhammad.
That’s the reference, that’s the inference, that’s later Muslims have put that in.
But on the Arabic, he’s not in there in the Arabic, except four times.
How many times is Jesus named here in the Qur’an?
93 times, which supposes that Jesus is more important than Muhammad even in the Qur’an, if you want to go by number of times that He’s referred to
Now when you look at the 65 references, geographical references, we find that almost in every case the nine names of places every time they do not fit Mecca, 600 miles too far North.
Let’s take a look at the Gospel of Luke, probably the most historical reference he has done.
Luke was a doctor, medical doctor and that’s why he filled his pages with names, dates, places, events.
When you look at the 110 geographical references in the Gospel of Luke, you will find he talked about 31 places named all right.
In every case all of them were correct, the right place, the right time, in the right area.
Now, let’s go to Mecca and this is where you can really see the problem.
How many times is Mecca referred to in this book?
Once, Sura 48:24
If it’s such an important city, why is there only one reference to it?
We do know that quite a bit about Mecca.
We know that if you look at the traditions and if you look at the Qur’an.
When you look at the traditions you will see that Mecca was the first sanctuary appointed.
It doesn’t say “Mecca”.
It just says “The first sanctuary appointed for mankind was that at Bakkah,” Sura 3:96.
It assumes that the place of the prophet is the “mother of all settlements”, that it is where Adam and Eve were thrown down to.
It is where Mecca is.
It’s where Abraham lived in 1,900 BC, according to Sura 21, but it doesn’t say the word ‘Mecca.’
It just says “This place of the prophet.”
So therefore, it’s a pretty important place, though it never gives it a name.
It just says “The place of the prophet”.
In Sura 7:24, Adam and Eve are thrown down to the earth.
According to the later traditions from the ninth and 10th century, they refer to that as Mecca, but not in the Qur’an.
Abraham supposedly lived there because that’s where the Kaa’ba is, but it didn’t call it the name and that’s where you know in Sura 21.
I had no idea Abraham lived that far south.
I thought Abraham lived way up in Canaan in Mesopotamia.
It’s where Muhammad was supposedly born and lived until 622, but it doesn’t give it a name.
And Mecca became the center of the Qibla in 624, but it doesn’t say “Mecca” even in Sura 2:145 and 149.
The only reference we have is Sura 48:24.
Why is it only referred to once if it’s so important?
If it is the earliest settlement in the history of mankind, it is where Abraham went to rebuild the Kaa’ba, if it was a center of trade in North, South, East or West, if it’s where Muhammad himself supposedly was born and grew up, then why don’t they name the name?
When you look at the tradition you notice that this place where this prophet is from, that it’s in a valley and has a parallel valley that has a stream going through it.
It has a pillar of “Salt”, it has fields, it has trees, it has grass, it has fruit, it has loam, it has “Olive trees” and it has mountains overlooking the Kaa’ba.
None of these things fit Mecca.
Mecca is not in a valley, does not have a parallel valley, does not have a stream going through it.
It doesn’t have a pillar of salt.
If this is what is Lot’s wife, that is way too far south.
That’s about 600 miles too far south.
It does not have fields, trees, grass, fruits, and loam.
It does not have olive trees.
There are no olive trees anywhere in the Arabian Peninsula.
The only olive trees that exist are in the Mediterranean, 600 miles further north.
Olive trees have never existed that far south.
Now take a look at this map here.
This is the seventh century Byzantine map.
What is missing right there?
That’s where Mecca is located today.
It’s not on this map.
Here’s the seventh century Arab trade route and you can see where the Arab trade route goes.
All the trade routes come from the Silk Road.
They all come to this area.
They come along here in the northern plateau.
This is the northern plateau, but they miss completely Mecca.
When you look at an official map you’ll see.
This is a sixth century map.
Mecca is not there.
It doesn’t exist on that map.
Here’s a seventh century map.
This is the time Muhammad was living.
There is no place called Mecca anywhere on the eastern coast or the western coast side.
Mecca still doesn’t exist and this is what has really puzzled cartographers because anybody should – I mean every map should have Mecca if it’s that an important city.
If it’s the oldest city in the history of mankind, if it’s where Abraham lived, if it was a center of trade north, south, east and west, why is it not on any map?
Here’s another seventh century map, still missing.
Yet another seventh century map, nonexistent
Now this is a map looking back, done in the 20th century looking back as to what Muslims thought.
This is the map that Muslims have put together saying that this is where Mecca exists.
Dr. Patricia Crone looked at this map and she saw that there was a problem with it.
We do know that Mecca supposedly got its importance because it became the center of trade.
That’s why it was so important, going south, east and west and that’s why Muhammad became important, because he was a trader himself.
And she looked at this map here and she could see here in Aden is where the trading starts.
It falls on that green line, goes up along the Western plateau.
When it gets to Ta’if, it suddenly goes down off the plateau, comes down to Mecca.
That’s over 1,000 meters down, way too far down.
Then it has to come back up and get back onto the plateau to get up to Yathrib.
That is high above Ta’if and then on up to Gaza in the north.
That’s known as the western trade route along the plateau.
When she looked at it, she says,
Why is this detour down to Mecca and back up Yathrib, from Ta’if and then back up to Yathrib?”
She was told that because they controlled the trade that’s why it had to come to Mecca.
So, she decided to go investigate it.
Now remember this woman reads and writes 15 languages so she can go back and look at all the original documents.
So, she went to all the original documents from the first, second, third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, went up to all the trading documents, went to documents that were written over here in India, pockets of it appeared in Sassanid which later then became ...
She went in … on the Byzantine Empire and the Sassanian Empire.
That’s the Christian Empire and that’s the Persian Empire.
And she noticed that in the fifth and sixth century these two empires started battling each other, the Persians and the Byzantines.
And as they battled each other, that shut down the Persian Gulf.
The trade used to come from the western coast, up the Persian Gulf.
That means the trade had to be rerouted over here to Aden.
Now Montgomery Watt is the one that came up with the theory of that’s why Mecca became important, because the trade was redirected down here and went up the western plateau and they controlled the trade all the way up along the western plateau.
Now my 10-year-old son looked at this map and he found the problem with that theory.
Do any of you find a problem with that theory, looking at that map?
Patricia Crone saw the problem of this theory really quickly.
Let’s see if you’re as good as my 10-year-old son.
Anybody wants to venture a guess, no?
This is water, right?
That’s the Arabian Sea.
You go up the Persian Sea.
You can’t go there therefore you come this way.
Why would you go all on land 1,250 miles when you have a waterway right here?
Why in the world did they take off the goods of the boat?
Patricia Crone found that if you only go 50 miles by land, that’s the same price as going 1,250 miles by sea.
It is prohibitively expensive to go by land, why?
Because you have to protect the goods, you have to preserve the goods, you have to have camels to carry them, you have to feed the camels, you have to have places to sequester them, you have to lay them at an oasis, you have to pay taxes and you have to make sure that no robbers come and rob you, therefore you have to secure them.
That’s why it’s so expensive.
That’s why everything is being done by sea.
Even today when you get all your cars, they come – I used to say in America it is from China.
That now I can’t say because you are in China, but from Japan they have to come by sea.
They don’t come over land, why?
Because it’s the cheapest way to send large amounts of goods and it has always been the cheapest even in the 21st century.
“Therefore, why in the world,” she asked, “would they take their ships down this direction, take them off here at Aden, go on through … up to Ta’if, down to Mecca, come to Yathrib, Khaybar and then up to Gaza?”
It made no logical sense.
So being a linguist, she went back to all the original documents and she read them, the first and the second and the third.
She read them in Syriac, she read them in Nabataean, she read all the original documents and she found that there was no across – there was no trade whatsoever going up the Arabian Gulf – I’m sorry, Arabian Peninsula.
It was all maritime.
Every bit of it was maritime and it was not the Arabs who were in charge.
It was the Eritreans over here.
It was Aksum; Aksum is a city right here.
That’s where the Eritreans live today.
That is – those were the people that controlled the trade.
Their names are all over the western coast of India.
And she destroyed the trade route with just one book that she wrote in 1987, “Meccan Trade and the Rise of Islam”.
Chapter by chapter by chapter, she completely deconstructed the trade route.
That’s why she got her death threat.
So, then she decided after looking at all this documentation, she wanted to find out,
“When was the first time that Mecca is referred in any documentation?”
She scoured every text she could find.
She even found references up here in … where they come across the desert over Yathrib right here, which later became Medina.
And she found that in Yathrib they have silver mines and they talk about the silver mines.
And they talk about Ta’if and they talk about Najran and they talk about Hidjr and they talk about Khaybar, but they don’t refer to Mecca once.
No reference to Mecca in any of the documentation, yet this is supposed to be the center of trade, the oldest city of all mankind.
Guess when she found the first reference to Mecca in any documentation.
It was on the Apocalypse of pseudo-Methodius Continuato Byzantia Arabica written in 741.
Muhammad died in 632, was born in 570 supposedly in the city that no one ever heard about before.
And for over 100 years after Muhammad’s death, there is no reference to this city at all.
The first map that you will see Mecca finally displayed on it is not till 900 AD, that’s the 10th century.
Now why have Muslims not told us this before?
Let’s look at modern Mecca today.
Today they have one of the largest tallest buildings in the world, the fourth tallest building right there looking right over the Gulf.
It’s a clock tower.
About six or seven buildings are built around it.
That’s going to – they want now that to be the center of time.
They want to make it a Meccan Mean Time, to take it away from Greenwich Mean Time, and they model it very much on “Big Ben”, from London itself.
When you look at the future, this is what Mecca is going to look like.
It’s going to be all cemented over, enormous structures, 62 different high, tall buildings, and enormous buildings.
Skyscrapers are going to be surrounding the Kaa’ba.
And when you do build buildings that tall, what do you do?
Well when you build buildings that tall, you got to build deep foundations, did you not?
And when you did build deep foundations, you’ve moved, you have to dig into the soil and when you dig in the soil in any major city anywhere in the world, archeologists come.
And why do archeologists come?
Because they want to see what artifacts you dig up.
If you dig up any building in Jerusalem or in Amman, or even possibly even here in Hong Kong, the further you dig the more you come across artifacts because that’s – those are residues from former civilizations.
So, the archeologists have to have come then.
You can see they’re digging it all up and what have they found?
Absolutely nothing, Mecca has no history.
There are no artifacts.
There is no museum of any archaic residue in Mecca today.
Can you see why this is such an embarrassment?
And that’s why now I would assume that they are now cementing everything over.
They want to make sure that nobody does any investigation there anymore because there’s nothing to find.
If Mecca did not exist prior to the seventh, the eighth century, then you need to ask:
“What are we going to do with the Qibla?”
Problem three and here is where the real rubber hits the map.
This is the most damaging material that I am getting out.
And this is material that now has caused Muslims lots of anger.
And that’s why we don’t see many Muslims here today.
They were told not to come here.
Let’s now move in to see what we are finding.
If you’re looking at Kaa’ba, you need to ask about the Qibla.
The Qibla is the direction up there.
Every Muslim knows anywhere in the world that they’re to pray towards Mecca and they’re given all kinds of accoutrement.
Many mosques have these Qiblas.
They’re pushed into the wall to show where Mecca is in every mosque around the world.
When I was in …, there in my hotel room I was having a Qibla pointing to me so I can know where I want to pray if I want to pray towards Mecca.
You have now your Apple phones.
You can get it on your smartphones, where the Qibla is.
So today every Muslim knows where Mecca is.
There is no excuse not to know here Mecca is and why?
Because in Sura 2:143-145, the direction of prayer is then dictated that it must be redirected from Jerusalem and back down, but it doesn’t say “Mecca,” just “To the holy place.”
They have put Mecca there in the parentheses.
So, everybody does assume that from 624 on, every Qibla of every mosque should be facing Mecca, right?
Because there were no mosques before that time; mosques – Islam really did not begin until the Caliph began, and that’s in 624.
So, every mosque that would have been built would have been after 624.
Archeology supports this change, not from Jerusalem to Mecca as Muslims suggest, but to some place further north!
When – back in 1905 two researchers in the Middle East, Dr. Fehervari and Dr. Creswell were going around that part of the road, it was still open.
They had not closed to foreigners.
And they were looking and they were trying to find the earliest mosque that they could find.
And they found the mosque at Fustat’, which is outside of Cairo.
It was a garrison town built in 641.
That mosque was facing straight east.
When they went to what is today Iraq, they went to the Wassit’ mosque built in 706 and that mosque – Qibla was facing west.
When they went to the Kufa’ mosque, which is also in Iraq, that mosque was also facing west.
So, this is what they found.
This mosque over here in Egypt was facing this direction, but it should have been facing this direction.
These two mosques that are now in Iraq today were facing this direction, but they should have been facing this correctly.
They all thought that therefore they must have been facing Jerusalem.
Jay: When you look at these maps, you will see they are off by three to five degrees for a very good reason.
According to documentary evidence, we have Jacob of Edessa, a Christian writer, suggested and he referred to the Mahgraye,
“So, from all this it is clear that it is not to the south that the Jews and the Mahgraye,” that means the Arabs, “here in the regions of Syria pray, but towards Jerusalem or the Ka’ba, the patriarchal places of their races.”
So even as late as 705, a Christian writer thought it was towards Jerusalem they were praying because he did look at it very carefully.
Of course, he didn’t have GPS like we have today.
That’s when Dan Gibson comes in.
Dan spent 25 years asking this question.
And he wrote two books, “The Qur’anic Geography” and this book.
And this is the book that now unpacked all of them.
What he did is he personally went to every early mosque.
He’s the only one that I know of that has gone to all 65 of the earliest mosques, physically gone there, studied them, looked and found where the Qiblas were for every one of these mosques.
He took photographs of all the earliest mosques.
And this is what he has found.
Looking at all the numerous mosques, I'm going to go through very quickly what he has found because, otherwise, this will take four hours.
The earliest mosque Dan talked about is the 626 known as the “Mosque of the 2 Qiblas” in Medina.
And it’s always been called the “Mosque of the 2 Qiblas” but no one really understood why because it’s facing Mecca.
So, what's the second Qibla?
Why is it called the “2 Qiblas”?
It was only in 1987 that they found out why when they started to do some refurbishment to the mosque and started digging down through the foundation.
They found that there was a second qibla this way.
Here’s the mosque.
Here’s the qibla facing Mecca but they found an entirely new qibla wall facing this direction, facing the completely opposite direction.
Now, they understood why it was always known as the “Mosque of the 2 Qiblas”.
So where is that second, earlier, qibla facing?
Not Jerusalem, but Petra.
Whoo, do, do, do, do
626: So, this is before Muhammad had died.
You already have a mosque that is facing completely the wrong direction.
In China, Guangzhou, Canton, as far as China, there is a mosque there.
It’s still there today.
You can still look at the qibla and look and see where the qibla is.
It was built in 627.
It’s facing Petra, as far away as Guangzhou.
Now, I have heard many Muslims say,
“Ah, so I'm using Google Earth.
Therefore, it’s very inaccurate.”
Listen, I'm not.
I didn’t do this research.
Dan Gibson did it.
He would never use Google Earth.
Google Earth is much to be exact and it follows a flat plane.
It follows a flat earth idea because you have to have a flat earth in order to draw them.
He did not use Google Earth.
He used Archnet put up by MIT, the most sophisticated GPS format – formation so that you can see the exact coordinates.
He went to every one of these places and he use Archnet to find their coordinates.
That’s why he can say and he got these so accurate.
Look at this one, the Cheraman Juma Masjid in India.
Look at the date, 629.
Muhammad died in 632.
It was still before Muhammad’s death.
Look at the direction it’s facing.
It’s facing Petra.
The Jami’ Hama al-Kabir Mosque in Syria
Now, we jumped to Syria.
Look where it’s facing.
It’s facing Petra, not Mecca.
The Fustat Mosque, the same mosque that Fehervari and Creswell had noticed back in 1905, over 100 years ago, Gibson found that they were completely wrong.
They – it was not facing Jerusalem.
It was off by three degrees to Jerusalem.
Then it is facing Petra.
Look at the date, 642.
It was still in the 7th century.
If you look, you can see carefully that it’s still living and it’s still existing.
And then we get to the Dome of the Rock, 690, built in 690 by Abd al-Malick.
I told you I’d get back to his name.
We’re going to talk quite a bit about Abd al-Malick.
You can see the significance.
This is the Dome of the Rock and the oldest mosque, in fact, possibly, the greatest building structure of its day, built in 690 to 691.
And look and see where it’s facing.
Now, I got – had caught up by this like all the way back in the 1990s.
And he said,
“You know, Jay, you have no idea what you’re talking about.
It is not facing south, that is facing, yeah, we do know.”
I said at that time that there was no qibla on it.
“Yes, there is a qibla.
If you look at the southern portico right there, you will see it.
It talks about Surah 2:145.
And if you look at the dome up here, there is Surah 17:1, which talks about the great mosque that Muhammad – not Muhammad, but the messenger going from the great mosque to the farthest mosque.
That’s talking about the Mi’raj.
So, therefore, he said,
“That’s the qibla where that’s referring to this.
That’s both in the Qur’an and not in the Qur’an.”
I had to get up and I had to say,
“Well, you don’t know your history as well.
The Dome of the Rock has been destroyed and rebuilt 11 times.
That façade that you see here, this façade, that whole dome, this whole structure you’re looking here on the outside was built in 1867, a little over 100 years ago.
So, a little over 100 years ago, they had to put the qibla in, but don’t say that this is 690.
In 690, there has never been a qibla there.”
However, I'm going to go back on that.
I'm going to lie.
You’re going to see why.
I'm just lying because I'm going to completely contradict myself in just a few minutes, not because I say so but because Gibson said so.
Look at the Humeina Mosque in Jordan, the Humeina Mosque, built in 699.
We’re at the end of the seventh century.
It is facing Petra, not Mecca.
The Amman Mosque in Jordan in 701, now we’re moving into the eighth century.
Muhammad died in 632.
So, now, this is a good 70 years later, 60 years later.
Look at – look where it’s facing.
It’s facing Petra, not Mecca.
The Grand Mosque Sa’ana in Yemen, it’s facing Petra in 705.
The Khirbat al-Minya Mosque in Israel, it’s facing Petra.
You can see right there, it’s not facing Jerusalem.
It’s not facing Mecca.
It’s facing Petra.
Notice how all of these mosques up until 706, every mosque up until 706, all of the Qiblas faced Petra.
In Jordan, 600 miles further north, nowhere near Mecca.
Look how they all come exactly right to Petra.
If you want to look at them from the back, from a distance as far away as Guangzhou, Wasit, Kufa, Baghdad, India, they all faced Petra.
This is the coordinates we’re looking from Archnet.
This is the much more accurate form of doing it rather than using Google Earth.
You can see they all come, all 17 Petra Qiblas, except for two, fall within 45 miles of the dotted circle.
You know, these are coming from thousands of miles away.
How did they get it so accurate?
Look how accurate the Qiblas are.
It is not until 706 that we finally get a qibla that is not Petra.
It is not Mecca.
It’s somewhere in between.
And suddenly a new qibla starts to form, a second qibla.
But it’s not Mecca.
It’s somewhere in between.
The Masjid I Tarik Khana that goes back in Iran, that’s facing Petra in 708.
The Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem
Now, here’s what's interesting because the Al-Aqsa Mosque is built on the same citadel as the Dome of the Rock.
Look at the entire citadel.
This is built in 709.
When you look at the Al-Aqsa Mosque, which is right here, and you look at the Dome of the Rock, which is right there, and you look at the entire citadel which is still there standing today, the entire citadel is facing Petra.
And you cannot change it unless you destroy it and rebuild it again.
It's not facing Mecca.
Even today, it’s not facing Mecca.
And this is built in 709.
That’s built in 709.
That’s built in 691.
The entire same citadel is facing Petra.
It’s not facing Mecca.
The Jami’al-Umawi al-Kabir Mosque in Damascus in Syria, it’s facing somewhere in between again.
Here’s that second qibla.
The Khirbat al-Mafjar of Jericho in Israel is facing Petra in 714.
The Anjar Mosque in Bosra, Syria, it’s facing Petra.
But also, in Syria, the Mosque of Umar in Bosra is facing in between.
There’s the second qibla.
So, now, we’re getting two different Qiblas but neither of them are Mecca.
The Hayr al-Gharbi Mosque in Syria is also facing in between and it’s almost facing the exact place.
And every one of these in between mosques, they’re almost exactly at the same spot.
It’s not until we get to the Banbhore Mosque in Pakistan, the first mosque anywhere in the world that faces Mecca.
Look at the date, 727.
Muhammad died in 632.
So according to the Qur’an, according to the traditions, the canonization of the qibla was 624.
This is over 103 years later.
They finally get the first mosque that we've been able to find that’s facing Mecca.
But then, in 728, the Qasr al-Hayr Mosque in Syria, it’s facing in between again, that same spot, somewhere in between.
When we get to the Amman Citadel Mosque in Jordan, it is facing Mecca.
And here what's interesting.
Look at the date, 730.
You have two different mosques here.
Here is the earlier mosque and here’s the later mosque.
This one is from, I think, 701.
Let me get another.
Here’s another picture, a better picture there.
This one here in Amman in Jordan, this is the 701 mosque.
That’s facing Petra.
Then there was a new mosque that’s rebuilt in 730 that’s facing Mecca.
So, there is 30 years between these two mosques.
That one is facing Mecca – I'm sorry, Petra
That one is facing Mecca.
What happened between 701 and 730?
That’s what we need to answer.
Jami’ al-Zaytuna Mosque in Tunisia
Now we get to North Africa.
And when you get to North Africa, you get a fourth qibla.
Not one, not two, not three, but four different Qiblas.
Here is what we call the parallel Qiblas.
These Qiblas all faced parallel to the line that goes between Mecca and Petra, a fourth qibla.
The Ba’albek Mosque in Lebanon, it goes back to that in-between qibla.
That’s the number two qibla.
The Mushatta Mosque built in Jordan in 743: it faces back to Petra again like the earliest mosques.
Here you have the Harran Mosque in Turkey.
It’s in between again like the second qibla.
So, there’s Qibla number two.
The Qasr Ukhaydir of Kufa mosque: that is finally facing Mecca
Look at the date, 764.
So, we’re now halfway through the eighth century.
We get to the Ribat Fortress.
There’s the parallel again.
That’s North Africa.
That’s the fourth qibla.
The Sahi Ramdah, Bowhar in Oman: that’s facing qibla number one, the first qibla, Petra.
So, there’s still mosque being built even as late as 771 that are facing Petra.
Here is the Suma’il Omani Mosque in Oman.
It’s facing Petra.
Look at the date, 771.
The Raqqa Mosque that had just been taken over by the coalition forces just this week, it’s in Syria.
It’s somewhere in between the second qibla.
When you get to Uzbekistan, you can see the Bibi Samarkand Mosque is facing Petra, though some people are saying it could also be facing Jerusalem because it goes right through Petra to Jerusalem from that angle, but either way.
The Cordoba Mosque in Spain is that parallel, that fourth qibla again.
The Jami’ Uqba ibn Nafi, Qiruwan Mosque in Tunisia: it’s that parallel one.
There it is.
All the mosques in North Africa are facing straight south, not east, not southeast, but straight south.
So, when you look at these fourth Qiblas, all the Qiblas were facing Petra up until 706.
There was confusion for the next hundred years.
17 of them faced Petra, eight are between, six are parallel, and only 10 faced Mecca.
The qibla was not finalized towards Mecca until 876, the late ninth century, almost 250 years too late.
And from that time off, all the Qiblas
Let’s just see what we talked about.
This is qibla number one.
Here it is.
All of these mosques from all over the world; India, all the way from China, just north over here right towards Petra up until 607 – sorry, 706, all of them all face there.
Then you have a second qibla, which is even more accurate.
That’s somewhere in between.
See, there’s Petra.
It’s also exactly in between.
There's something going on here that we need to find out.
Then you have the parallel Qiblas.
This is the fourth qibla that parallels the line between Petra and Mecca.
And all these North African mosques are facing straight this way.
They’re not facing this way.
They’re not facing that way.
They’re facing straight up and down.
It’s not until 727 that you first get the first mosque facing Mecca.
And it’s not until 876, the late ninth century, this is almost – well, this is also 150 years after Muhammad that finally all the mosques begin to face Mecca.
Note which Qiblas are the most accurate?
And I've heard many Muslims say, well, yes, that’s just because the Muslims and the Arabs didn’t know their direction.
They were just confused about their direction.
They were very primitive.
Well, if that were the case, why is it that when you look at all the Petran mosques, they were off by 2.9 degrees.
When you look at all the between mosques, they’re off by .98, less than a degree off.
When you look at all the parallel mosques, they’re point – 3.5.
And when you look at all the Meccan mosques, they’re off by 4.78.
If anything, it’s the later Qiblas that are the most inaccurate.
The ones going to Mecca are the most inaccurate of all the Qiblas.
So, you can't do that theory anymore.
Throw that out the window.
Why were all the mosques facing Petra?
To do that, you need to look and see where Petra is.
Take a look where Petra is.
It’s right in the center of all the trade.
All of the trade went to Petra.
So, what is Petra?
Well, it was the sanctuary of the Umayyads.
It was a sanctuary before that of the Nabateans.
The Nabateans were ones that controlled Petra.
When you go to Petra today, you will see.
It’s where there are tombs and temples.
How many of you have been to Petra?
How many of you had a chance to go there?
It’s a beautiful place to go.
And when you look there, you will see.
It is all these temples carved out of sheer rock, beautiful carvings, whole cities that have been carved out of sheer rock.
And it was the center of Nabateans.
The Nabateans were there from the second century BC.
They controlled that whole area.
They were the ones that give us Arabic.
Arabic language comes from the Nabataean language.
The name for God in Arabic is Allah.
Allah is a Nabataean god.
Allah is the name of the Nabataean god.
They are seen as their superior god.
Also, Hubal is another name.
It’s another formal name for Allah.
Interestingly, the Nabataean Allah has a wife named al-Lat and al- ‘Uzza.
Whoo, do, do, do, do, do, which means Allah has a wife.
I had no idea, which means the Nabataean Allah is a pagan god and a polytheistic god.
So, when Muslims say that Allah is one, then I would like to know what they’re going to do with the Nabataean Allah, which is where they got the name from.
Do you see the problem with using the name Allah?
It’s the wrong name.
It’s a pagan name.
It's a polytheistic name.
It’s a pre-Islamic name.
It is not a Christian name.
It is not a biblical name.
The name for God on the Bible is not Allah.
It is Yahweh.
Yahweh has no wife but Yahweh has a son.
Isn't that interesting?
Make sure you get the right name.
What's fascinating to me is that most Muslims here tonight should know where al-Lat and al- ‘Uzza are because that’s in the Qur’an in Surah 53:19-20.
Am I not correct, Tariq?
In Surah 53:19-20, you have reference to al-Lat, al-Manat, and al- ‘Uzza.
These are known as the Satanic verses.
These are the three gods that supposedly Muhammad introduced into the Qur’an.
Satan supposedly seduced him by leaving those verses in.
And that’s why Gabriel when he moved to …, excised to take out those verses.
He took out those verses when he left the three names there.
And they’re still there today.
And this is the name – this is the Satanic verses that Salman Rushdie made famous in his book called “The Satanic Verses.”
Every Muslim scholar knows about these Satanic verses.
Now, we now know where al-Lat and al- ‘Uzza come from.
These are the two goddesses who have the same name that is the wife.
Al-Lat is the feminine form of Allah.
That’s why it makes sense now.
That’s why Allah is the wrong god.
They – whoever put the Qur’an together should never have used that name and never have said this god is one because they – al-Lat and al- ‘Uzza and Allah all belong to the same god in this family.
Now, when you look at Petra, take a look at Petra.
Petra is in a valley.
It has a parallel valley.
There, you can see the valley.
You can see the parallel valley.
It has a stream going right through it at this part.
And it has a number of streams.
It has fields.
It has trees.
It has grass.
It has clay.
It has loam.
It has olive trees.
Everything that we see in the Qur’an about this city where this prophet comes from fits Petra.
Not one of these geographical cases fits Mecca.
Petra has all the items listed in the Qur’an.
Petra would be the place that the Qur’an is referring to.
When we look at Petra even closer, we find that the people in ‘Ad which are mentioned 23 times in the Qur’an, the people from Thamud which are mentioned 24 times, and the people from Midian which are mentioned seven times, all are around Petra.
Now, can you see why this prophet had so much contact with these people from this city?
Because it was right next door to them
If he had been way down here, he had to take a helicopter every day to meet them.
They didn’t have helicopters back then.
That’s why you have to make sure that if you're going to look at the historical record, you’ve got to get the right man in the right place doing the right thing at the right time.
It looks like they don’t have any of that.
Now, the significance of that:
Nothing is known about Muhammad until the late seventh century from within Arab sources.
His biography, the Sira, and his sayings, the Hadith, did not appear until the ninth century.
His city Mecca isn't referred to until the eighth century.
Thus, much of what we know of Muhammad is even written down hundreds of years later, and hundreds of miles away.
It looks like he is nothing more than a later redaction.
He’s been put back by the later writers and put, imposed into the wrong place.
It looks like he’s nothing more than a redaction possibly by Abd al-Malick!
Why do I bring up Abd al-Malick?
He is highly significant.
“Islam, and the prophet’s life, as we know it, was not derived from the seventh century, but evolved over a period of 200-300 years, and redacted back on to the prophet’s life, and compiled possibly in the 9th century.”
Now, let’s go summarize it and we’re going to come and find and bring it all to a conclusion.
New books and documentaries are being published which question the Classical Account of Islam’s beginnings.
Why are there no Muslim sources for 200 years?
That’s the first question.
Why do the claims they make not fit the historical record?
Why are all the geographical references so few and confusing?
Why do they all seem much further north?
They’re not in the right place.
They’ve got the wrong person at the wrong place.
Why are there so many references to vegetation which would not exist in Mecca at that time?
Why is Mecca not mentioned until 741, nor included in any map until the 900s?
Why is Mecca not on the trade route?
Why do all the Qiblas face Petra for the first 100 years, then are confused the next 100, and aren't standardized to Mecca until 822, 200 years too late?
Therefore, much of what we know about early Islam is in doubt.
So, what really happened?
What is going on?
Now, I'm not going to say exact standard until you know about what happened.
We don’t know yet.
This is all coming out in just this last year.
There's an awful lot, yet, we need to start looking at.
We need to know on why is it there's four different Qiblas.
What's interesting, these four are exact.
They are absolutely the same Qiblas and that shows that there was something happening politically.
What we can and only what I'm going to do now is what we think is happening, okay?
And I am – and a year from now, it might be completely changed because as we're now digging more, as we're going there, as we're looking out more, we’re starting to get more and more information all the time.
This is brand-new, so everything you're hearing today is the first time you've heard it.
This is why it's now written down, getting into the academia.
The academics are very interested in what's happening here because for the first time, we're getting an entirely different narrative than what Islam has been telling us, not for 1,400 years but for 1,300 years.
And that's why what I'm going to say next is nothing more than supposition.
Or let me repeat that.
It’s nothing more than what we think this went on so far at this time.
What we need to do is we need to look at what we do know.
And what we do know is there was a – the Umayyads did exist.
The Umayyads were a very real empire.
They did begin in 661.
We don't know before that where they came from.
We do know that they were headquartered in Damascus.
Now, that's the first problem.
Why in Damascus, way up north?
If they were Muslims, why weren’t they headquartered down in Medina or Mecca?
Why has no one asked this question?
Damascus is not just 600 miles away.
It’s over a thousand miles away.
We also know that their sanctuary was Petra, that the Umayyads’ sanctuary was Petra.
It was never Mecca.
It was always Petra.
That's why Petra is such a great city and that's why it is talked about.
There is so much reference to it.
But we do know that Abdullah Ibn Zubayr was the governor of Petra and he rebelled against the Umayyads.
In fact, he rebelled against the Sufyan and the Marwan family in 683, against the father of Abd al-Malick.
He rebelled against them.
And what he did, he destroyed the Ka’aba in Petra.
Did you hear me say Ka’aba?
Yes, there were Ka’abas in every major city.
There is not just one Ka’aba.
That’s another thing Muslims haven’t told us.
We have been looking at reference after reference.
Almost every major city had a Ka’aba.
But these were Nabataean Ka’abas.
Isn't that fascinating?
Zubayr, when he left and he rebelled against the Umayyads he destroyed the Ka’aba in 683 against the Umayyad power in Damascus.
He destroys the Ka’aba in Petra and takes the Black Stone with him.
The Black Stone, where have we heard about the Black Stone before?
Where is it today?
It's in Mecca.
It's in the Ka’aba.
It's in the northeast corner of the Ka’aba encased in silver.
What in the world is that Black Stone doing in the middle of the Ka’aba?
Remember, Muslims are not supposed to pray to anything.
There is no other god but God.
What in the world is a Black Stone going into the holiest place of all of Islam and why do Muslims kiss it?
See, I've asked this for so many Muslims and no Muslim can give me a response.
I will tell you the reason because this is a Nabataean custom.
The Nabateans believe that wherever the Black Stone was, God's presence was there.
Because this was a meteorite that came from the heavens
They saw it come from the heavens and therefore they worshipped it.
So Zubayr takes the Black Stone with him.
And by taking the Black Stone, he takes god's presence with him.
This was a huge affront to the Umayyads.
That's why they came from Damascus to come and destroy Zubayr.
By the time they got there, one of their own died.
So, Abd al-Malick at this time had to return home quickly and he had to go back up to Damascus again.
We know that from history.
That's all in the history.
Now, you can see by looking at the map here.
Damascus is way up here.
Mecca is way down here.
Petra is right here.
Why in the world would they – if this is their sanctuary for all of their – for all of their theology, why would they make their political office way up here and not down here?
Muslims have not looked at history.
But hold on a minute.
We know nothing about this part of history from Islam, remember?
History only begins to appear in the 9th century.
Whoo, do, do, do, do.
We’ll come back to that.
So, Abd al-Malick, who reigns from 685 to 705, that's well documented way up in Damascus, not Medina, not Mecca.
He needs an Arab identity.
He realizes that he has to have an Arab identity.
They have taken over Basra, Baghdad, Damascus, Jerusalem, and Cairo by 652.
So, for 40 years now, they now control these great cities all along.
By this time, they moved all the pagans across North Africa all the way up to Andalusia, which is Spain.
And they moved all the way over to the east over to India.
So, from India over to Spain, all that land was under their control but they do not have any identity.
They have to make it.
Because many of them were nomadic, they didn't even know how to run cities.
They have to have the Jews and the Christians run the cities for them.
And the reason they chose Jews and Christians because they both were brothers from Abraham.
They were both part of the Ahl al-Kitāb.
The problem was the Jews and Christians had a prophetic line.
The Jews and the Christians have a book.
They were part of the Ahl al-Kitāb.
The Arabs have no book.
They had no prophet.
For 40 years, they have been the political heads.
And that's why Abd al-Malick very curiously – Abd al-Malick needs to have this Arab identity.
How do you create an Arab identity that is greater than the Jews and the Christians that you're dependent on, that you are also in competition with because the Great Empire the day of that time was the Byzantine Empire?
That was the Christian Empire.
How can you defeat the Christian Empire and create your own identity that's equal or better to theirs?
What do you do?
Abd al-Malick comes up with a plan.
And you can see what he does.
The coins, if you look at the coins in the British Museum Numismatic section, you will see that these are the Byzantine Dinar.
If you look, there is the emperor with two retainers on either side.
On the back side of the coin is the Byzantine cross, so it's very clear this is a Christian coin.
Now, in order for them to trade, once the Arabs take over power, there in 661, once the Umayyad dynasty that comes forth, they have to have coins that they can trade with the Byzantines.
So, what do they do?
They created these Sufyani Dirhams and there it is – instead of the emperor, they now have the caliph.
They have Uthman and his two retainers.
And they now – instead of the Byzantine cross, they take the cross’ face off, so it’s not a cross but it’s still recognizable as the same coin.
That’s how they can now trade with their neighbors.
But since when are Muslims allowed to have images on coins?
This is obviously nothing to do with Islam.
This is long before Islam but this is 660, this is 670, this is 680, this is up until 685.
This is supposedly the first Muslim empire.
Who in the world and what Muslim empire would ever have images on their coins?
And the cross on the backside of it, why haven't we've been told this?
Then you get to Abd al-Malick and he created coins – this coin of himself.
There it is on the coin.
This is 685 to 705 that he was in power.
Then in 691, he takes off these coins and introduces these coins in 692.
Take a look.
He takes all the images off, no longer has image.
So, something happens in 691 and he introduces this coin.
Take a look what's on the coin, the Shahada.
There is only one god but God.
And Muhammad is a prophet of God.
This is the first time we see Muhammad's name anywhere on any documentation, introduced by Abd al-Malick in 692.
Muhammad died in 632.
His name didn't appear prior to 692.
For 60 years, we’ve not seen his name anywhere until Abd al-Malick introduces it on these coins.
At the same time, he then … and built this Dome of the Rock in 691, the year before.
And I'm sorry.
Did I say it was the first time it’s introduced?
Actually, it was introduced a year before.
And that building, we'll get to that.
He builds this building, the greatest structure of its day, in the middle of Jerusalem.
Why do you build it in Jerusalem?
Why don't you build it in Damascus?
And if Mecca existed, why didn't you build in Mecca?
Well, because there was no Mecca.
There's no reference to any Mecca at all, not until 741, and we're still back in 691.
So, what does he do?
Take a look at what he does.
He builds it above the Church of Sepulcher.
There is the church of the Sepulcher in Jerusalem which is the theological head for all Christianity.
He takes it and he builds it among the hill above it looking down onto it, basically saying we are the new men in town.
We are now going to build the largest structure of our day, looking down upon you Christians, and we're going to do something significant with this building.
It's the greatest building of its time.
That's why it's still there today.
Take a look at it.
When you go to Jerusalem, you will have to see it.
It's one of the most beautiful buildings even today.
But look and see what he does.
He doesn't just build the building.
He uses the same Byzantine architecture, so it's a one of mention because he's using the same Byzantine architecture as the Christians but a much larger and a more prominent structure in the holiest city of Jews and Christians, basically saying,
“We’re the new men in town.”
That's why he didn’t build in Damascus.
And the reason he didn’t build in Mecca because Mecca didn’t even exist at that time.
It is because of the Mi’raj.
Is this because of the Mi’raj?
This is what the Muslims tell me today that it was built because of the Mi’raj.
Well, I would like to know.
If that was something, then there’s something written about it, right?
So, what you need to do, you need to go back to the only part of the Dome of the Rock that is original.
See, the building has been destroyed and rebuilt 11 times.
Didn’t I tell you that earlier?
And the only parts of the building that still exist today are these two inner ambulatories.
Both of these stood: that one there and this one here.
That's the only original part of the building that still exists today.
And when you look at those ambulatories, you need to look at the inscriptions.
You need to look at the inscriptions up there and the inscriptions up here.
Those are the original part of the inscriptions from 691.
Take a look at them.
They are written in Arabic.
And look and see what they say.
This is the first Qur’anic material we see anywhere in the world.
This is the first Qur’anic material that has come to light and it's on the Dome of the Rock.
So, what did it say?
You have Surah 4:171.
“O People of the Scripture!
Do not exaggerate in your religion nor on utter aught concerning Allah save the truth.
The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was only a messenger of Allah, and His word which He conveyed unto Mary, and a spirit from Him.
So, believe in Allah and His messengers, and say not ‘Three’.
It is better for you!
Allah is One and only God.
Far is it removed from His transcendent majesty that he should have a son.”
Who is that attacking?
That's attacking the Trinity.
That's attacking Jesus.
That's attacking His divinity and His sonship.
All four in one
That’s why Surah 4:171 is the earliest Qur’anic reference we have and it's right there in the Dome of the Rock.
“Praise be to God, who has not taken unto Himself a son”.
Who’s that attacking?
And who have no partner?
Who’s that attacking?
Supposedly the fact that Jesus is the partner of God
“Nor has He any protecting friend through dependence.”
And then we get to the mother lode.
This is the big verse.
“There is no god but God.
He is One.
He has no associate.”
Now that's not part of the Shahada today.
That was a piece that was added in the Shahada that no longer exists today.
So even the Shahada is not the same.
“He is God, the One!
God, the eternally besought of all!
He begets not nor was begotten.”
Who is that attacking?
“And there is none comparable unto Him.
Muhammad is the Messenger of God.”
This is the first time we see Muhammad's name, introduced on the Dome of the Rock in 691 on Surah 112, which then became Surah 112.
We now know today is Surah 112.
It wasn't then.
There were no Surah titles.
There was no reference.
They finally got their own prophet built on the largest building of its day.
Abd al-Malick introduces his Arab identity beginning with the Dome of the Rock.
It's larger than any other non-Arab structure.
It’s facing the Arab sanctuary, Petra.
It incorporates inscriptions against Byzantine Christianity.
It introduces their faith.
That’s where you see the word “Islam” first introduced.
That’s where you see the people “Muslim” introduced.
And that's where you see their prophet “Muhammad” introduced.
At the same time … did a research on all the protocols.
These are the official documents put on by the caliph.
From the Sufyani period from 661, every one of the Caliphal Protocols say nothing about Muhammad, say nothing about Islam, there's no reference to people called Muslim, and there's no reference to any book called the Qur’an.
Now, that's rather curious if these are the first Muslims and these are the original documents.
These are the official documents of the caliphs of the Sufyani family.
Why don't they say the three most important things?
Why don’t they talk about who they are?
Why don't they talk about their faith?
Why don't they talk about the book?
And why don't they talk about the man?
The book of the matter is completely [messy].
Dr. … noticed there's even a Bismillah there.
But the Bismillah is not the same Bismillah we use today.
These protocols continue year after year from 660 up to the 670s, 680s.
By the time you get to 691 when Abd al-Malick scripts protocol, he says in almost overnight, suddenly, the Shahada is introduced.
” There is only one god but God.
He has no associate.
Muhammad is His prophet.”
It is introduced the same time that the Dome of the Rock is built, simultaneously the same time that this is introduced on the coins.
So, Abd al-Malick not only introduces it on the Caliphal Protocols, he introduces on the Dome of the Rock.
He also introduces it on the coins.
He is now creating an Arab identity.
Now, they have a prophet, their own prophet.
But in order to have a prophet, you have to get a book.
Every prophet has to have a Revelation.
And here’s the problem, there is no book.
Can you now understand why all the earliest Qur’ans begin to appear after Abd al-Malick or during the time of Abd al-Malick?
And that's why the Topkapi, the Samarkand, the Ma’il, the Petropolitanus, the Sanaa manuscript, the Husseini manuscript all begin to appear in the eighth and ninth centuries.
And that's why every one of these manuscripts starts getting manipulated.
Every one of these manuscripts is incomplete.
Not one of them agrees with each other.
They do not agree with the Qur’an we have today.
Because you have four different schools of manuscripts
You have one school up in Damascus that is known as the Ubayy ibn Ka'b’s manuscript codex.
You have another school in Basra that’s known as ibn Musa’s Codex.
And then you have another school in Baghdad that's known as … – sorry, is known as ibn Mas'ud codex.
And then you have another codex that comes out of Medina that’s known as Zayd ibn Thabit.
Four different codices, not one of them agrees to each other.
But reference after reference that these are vying for ascendancy and that's why all of this happens in the eighth century.
None of it happens in the seventh century.
You got the building.
The earliest Qur’anic texts are on the “Dome of the Rock” in 691.
The earliest Qur’anic manuscripts, they don’t even agree with the Qur’an we have today.
The earliest Qur’anic manuscripts begin to appear during his reign and his son Al-Walid and on and on.
None of them are complete.
None of them parallel today's Qur’an.
They continue to be changed and corrected by later caliphs.
We saw that on Wednesday.
So, what is happening?
You have two empires that are competing.
The sanctuary in Petra is destroyed by an earthquake at 713.
And when an earthquake comes and destroys a sanctuary, God's presence leaves.
This is well-known in ancient medieval times.
Thus, a new place is needed.
That's why Mecca had to be chosen, possibly chosen by the rebel Abdullah Ibn Zubayr and those from Kufa, the Kufa over in Persia.
Remember, you have – you have Abd al-Malick and the Umayyads up in Damascus.
Over in Baghdad, you have another group.
They are hated by the Umayyads.
They are the Abbasids.
The Abbasids hate the Umayyads.
The Umayyads hate the Abbasids.
The Abbasids are part of the Persians, raising the Persian hegemony.
Persians were destroyed by the Arabs and that's why they hated them so much.
So, they were already, already vying for ascendency.
So, you can see already, Zubayr had joined with the Persians when he takes the Black Stone and rebels in 687.
The Abbasids and Zubayr create their sanctuary in Mecca, then demand allegiance.
All those Qiblas facing Mecca are theirs.
But their first mosque that is even built is not until 727, hundred years after Muhammad died.
So here, you have one group that are now creating a whole new sanctuary.
The political – the political head is in Baghdad but they all – they don’t have, in every case, never have the political center the same as the religious center.
That's why the Umayyads have their political center up in Damascus but their religious center is in Petra because that’s the Nabataean center or the sanctuary.
So here, you have the Abbasids have to have a new sanctuary.
It's some – according to some references, it looks like Zubayr came from Mecca.
That's probably why Mecca was chosen.
But that's why it has no history.
There is no history there.
There is nothing that goes back.
That's why they can't find any artifacts.
Al Hajjaj also rebels.
He is the governor in 705.
And it is – it looks like it is his mosques which are missing between the other two sanctuaries, so that's why you get a second qibla because you have another rebellion.
This is a political rebellion.
Those in North Africa and Andalusia don't show allegiance to either empire, so they have mosques facing parallel to either each sanctuary.
So, then you get a fourth qibla.
Now, you have four different Qiblas, four different political situations, two different empires who are vying for ascendency.
Can you then understand why you have four different directions?
When the Abbasids finally overpower the Umayyads in 749, they become the new power.
Most of all the Qiblas then face Mecca with few holdouts until 822 when they all face Mecca.
And from that time on, every mosque has faced Mecca.
Basically, what you have here is you have a political tug-of-war going on.
This makes sense.
That's exactly what happens.
And depending on who you support, if you support the Umayyad, then your mosque in your city faces Petra.
If you support the Abbasids, then your mosque is facing – where in your city faces Mecca.
Or if you don't like either, you face somewhere in between.
Now that the Muslims have a prophet, Muhammad; a revelation, the Qur’an; the sanctuary, Mecca; they need a history.
Can you then understand why this man's history doesn't get written down until the ninth century?
It takes up another 100 years to finally get it written down.
And then, so these don't get written down until the late ninth century.
See, this is what's curious.
No one's ever bothered to answer this question, why was Bukhari given 600,000 of these sayings and he throws away 98% of them?
There must be an agenda there.
Obviously, you only retain 2% because these are the only 2% that fit their narrative.
That's why there was a manipulation that continues for 200 years.
Once the Hadith had started to come up, then the Tafsir
Then they got to start translating and making sense of this book.
And that's why the commentaries don't begin to appear until the 10th century.
By the ninth century, they have a book, the man, the place, and the story.
A new religion is formed and growing, yet, it did not happen within a period of 22 years.
It evolved from a period of two to three hundred years.
So, what about Muhammad?
Since much of what we know about early Islam is in doubt, since much of the Qur’an is also in doubt, since nothing is known of Muhammad until the late seventh century, or Mecca until the eighth century, or his story until the ninth century, hundreds of years later and hundreds of miles away, can we conclude that Islam is nothing more than a later redaction, possibly begun by Abd al-Malick, then continued by his descendants, proving Muhammad had nothing to do with the Qur’an?
So, who is he and what is his purpose?
It looks like the Muslims have the wrong man, at the wrong place, doing the wrong thing, at the wrong time.
What about Jesus?
We know where Jesus was born, in Bethlehem.
That's not in dispute.
We know where Jesus grew up, in Nazareth.
That’s not in dispute.
We know where Jesus died and when, in Jerusalem.
That's not in dispute.
We know what Jesus did, the last three years especially.
That's not in dispute.
We know from eyewitness accounts exactly what he said, what he did from Matthew and John himself.
We know from hostile accounts, you know, from Thallus, and Tacitus, and Josephus, these are Greek, Roman, and Jewish historians, exactly when he died and where he died.
We know when they were written, between 15 and 60 years later.
Few doubt his historicity today.
Thus, we have the right man, at the right place, doing the right thing, at the right time.
So where do we go from here?
Historians set the stage.
We move it on.
The questions they asked, we research, and expand.
We must confront Islam’s historical foundations.
We must challenge Muhammad and the Qur’an.
We must demand the same about all books, not just our Bible but also Jesus Christ Himself.
We must bring both into the “Public Sphere” and then let people come to their own conclusions.
Because similar historical questions have already been asked of Christianity, and every one of them has been answered
We need to bring our friends “home”.
I’ll open now to questions.
Bernard: Thank you, Jay, for all the presentation.
I appreciate very much this, very good.
I'm from …
I just would like to ask about the claim of some intervening dialogue between Muslims and Christians.
And Muslims, they’re speaking about the word “Allah” has come from the word “alaha”, which is referring to the Peshitta text in the first century.
I mean, they’re saying that the claim of the histories on the leaders and – so it seems like – correct me if I'm wrong, but based upon your presentation, it’s much more of the western flavor of historical construction.
So, what do you think about the connection between the Peshitta text of the word “Allah” with the medieval chapter that most of the Muslims claim that this is the proof of the evidence of the existence of Muhammad and the Qur’an and the … society.
Jay: I'm sorry.
I'm not – I don’t know if I'm getting that last question.
What would that be?
Pull it away from your mouth a bit because there’s too much –
What I'm saying is that is there historical connection between the claim with this man, you know, the Christians and the Muslims’ intervening dialogue when they’re always referring to the Peshitta text?
Jay: Peshitta text?
Mostly the Mar Thoma, Mar Thoma Church, they are referring to that man as a dude, constructed the word “Allah” into the word “alaha”, which is referring to the old – first century of the written of these texts.
And let me see if I get your question right.
Is the “alaha” or “Elohim”, is that what you’re referring to?
Jay: The Elohim is the same as Allah?
Jay: I have no problem with that.
I think that's exactly what your question is.
Is that and not therefore the name for Allah in the first century?
Bernard: Oh, we don’t know.
My question is: Is there any convention from the historical evidence because the Mar Thoma, you know, Mar Thoma Church already in the first time of – first century, they already exist and the Bible has already been canonized ...?
And this has become the base whereby the Muslim and the Christian where they have intervening dialogue, they are referring into this man.
They’re always looking to the …
Jay: You're right from the Mar Thoma Church.
Bernard: No, no, I'm a Pentecostal Evangelist.
Jay: No, no, that’s fine.
But have you – is there any text from the Mar Thoma Church that’s 2,000 years old?
Bernard: Yeah, that is Peshitta until now.
Jay: Peshitta is from the fourth century.
It’s not from the first century.
Bernard: No. Is that – it's already existence until now, the Mar Thoma …
Jay: The Mar Thoma is making lots of claims that they cannot support.
I don’t know about any Mar Thoma codex that is from the first century.
Bernard: I don’t think so.
Which is much older than the presentation of Muslim, they are older than –
Jay: The Muslim, okay.
Bernard: Yes. I just would like to ask your preference and your comment about –
Jay: Well, let me ask you this, sir.
Do you know where the oldest Peshitta is?
Bernard: Yeah, of course.
Jay: Where is it?
It’s in the historians in Jordan.
Jay: It’s not.
It’s actually in Dublin.
It’s in the Chester Beatty Manuscripts.
It’s part of Chester Beatty –
Bernard: They claim authorization in … Muslim, has been refuted by the – mostly of the –
Jay: Sir, do you believe that the oldest – are you suggesting that the –
Bernard: It is okay.
You can believe yourself.
Well, what I'm saying is what is your comment on the word of the Peshitta, which is in the first century that becomes the reference for the Muslim and –
Jay: I don’t believe it’s the first century.
It’s a fourth century document.
That is true.
Bernard: Can you give me your story of the firsthand sources about these things?
Jay: Fourth century, again, but not first century
I'm asking you.
Bernard: So, you’re suggesting that the word “Allah”, “alaha” in the Peshitta text is not in the first century?
Jay: Fourth century
Am I being clear?
It’s the fourth century.
It’s not first century.
Bernard: Can you recommend any document?
Jay: There is no document from the first century, sir.
I don’t really have a Biblical document from the first century.
Bernard: Oh, now, you’re referring to the biblical.
What I'm saying is that your secular source and the firsthand source and you as a historian, the theologies can claim, I mean, I don’t have to know that.
Where do you get those answers?
Jay: Very simple
Let me say it again.
I now said it five times.
The earliest Peshitta, which is Syriac documents, the Peshitta is amalgamation of the four gospels.
Jay: Okay? It was written by Tatian.
Tatian lives within the late third century.
Jay: So how can it be a first century document?
Bernard: No, they were written in Peshitta.
That’s why – okay, from the Peshitta into the modern time, is there an intermediary firsthand source that can claim this Peshitta?
The Peshitta text or the Mar Thoma Orthodox Church, they already did know.
They have this, hand it down until this very –
Jay: I can imagine the Mar Thoma, sir, because I'm from India.
I know of every Indian master in the century.
Bernard: You know?
Jay: But there has been no Indian reference that I'm –
Bernard: That’s why my sense is –
Jay: So, are you Mar Thoman?
Bernard: No, no, no.
Jay: So why do we have to …, that’s a Mar Thoma?
Bernard: Well, we read.
There’s a custom.
We have to know the sources, right?
Jay: Okay, very clear.
Jay: I would ask you to go back to the Mar Thoma, which is a church in Kerala.
The Mar Thoma, they do believe that Thomas went to Kerala.
I don’t think they’re in doubt of that.
What I do doubt is if they can produce a text from the first century.
Bernard: The reconstruction for a language of knowledge of Syriac in Eastern Syria and in the Western Syria has been claimed by many historians.
Jay: Give me one name of one historian that claims it.
Jay: When did … die?
In the 1800s
Here, if you're talking about somebody that is not even part of the modern history.
Bernard: It really –
Jay: Okay. Sir, let me get – to answer your question is the –
Let’s assume that the Syriac – the earliest Syriac Peshitta that we have today is in the British – is – sorry – is in the Chester Beatty Manuscript.
It’s in the Chester Beatty Library.
Bernard: I don’t think so.
But the western – I think the western –
Jay: Sir, I don’t know of any scholar that would agree with what you have just said.
Bernard: I appreciate your presentation.
You know, it’s much more in favor of the Muslim view of the Qur’an.
Jay: “Alaha” that’s in the Peshitta is not the same as the “Allah” in the Qur’an.
Bernard: I agree, sir.
That’s why I want to know your preferences of the word “Allah” and “alaha” in the Peshitta text.
Jay: I would have no difficulty – I would have no difficulty believing it is, but is it the same God?
Is it the same name as Yahweh?
Bernard: Well, you’re talking about the translation … the reiteration of the Bible.
Jay: I'm talking about: Is it the same with Yahweh?
Bernard: What I'm saying is it’s not in Islamic and the Christians what they have been thinking about, you know, they always …
That’s my first introduction with –
Jay: I'm sorry, is anybody following what his question is?
I'm not following his question.
Male Speaker 1: No.
Jay: What is your question again?
Bernard: Then my question is how do you feel about the Peshitta text about the word “Allah” in the first century is already written in the text, the traditions of Qur’an that – which is now being referred by some Muslim.
Jay: Oh, okay.
So, forget about the Peshitta.
Let’s just talk about the name Allah.
I'm sure “Allah” existed.
It existed from the second century BC.
The Nabateans’ God is Allah.
Bernard: You know, my question – it is.
What I'm saying, this is the basis that which is some Islamic claim that they have the historical evidence of existence about the main …, you know.
Bernard: I just wanted to know what your view on the claim.
Jay: What's your name, by the way?
Bernard: I'm Bernard. Yeah.
Jay: Bernard, I would suggest, yes, go ahead and say that.
And what I would say to those Muslims is: Be careful because what you're doing is, you’re actually falling into the trap of admitting that Allah, that your God Allah is actually pre-Islamic.
He is pre-Islamic.
I said that already earlier tonight, did I not?
He is a Nabataean God.
That means he was – that name has been around since the second century BC.
Nabateans were the ones that gave Allah its language.
The Arabic language comes from the Nabataean language.
It is the pre-cursor to the Arabic.
So, it would not surprise me.
I'm not – I'm going to dispute on the date of the text, but it would not surprise me that the name itself has always been around since the second century BC and it is a pagan Nabataean god.
So, if Muslims want to claim that this is the god they have in their Qur’an, they can have that god.
I don't love that god because that god has a wife named al-Lat.
That means that already you have a duality in the godhead.
So how can that god be one if he has a wife?
Who … of that?
Because that completely contrasts Surah 6:101, which says that god cannot have a consort.
If whoever put the Quran together had known that, they would never have chosen the name Allah.
They would never have gone to the Nabateans for their god.
They should have gone to the Jews and Christians, who were their next-door neighbors, to go to the real name for God, Yahweh, because Yahweh does not have a wife.
Yahweh is one, has always been for 3,400 years.
We've known about that name.
Since Moses received that name, in Exodus 3:14-15, that's the name that they should have used.
And you will not find that name in this book.
If that name did know that – the personal name for God, the eternal name for God, the holy name for God, the eternal name that even today Jews will not repeat audibly.
If that name is not in this book then how can Muhammad claim to be a prophet if he didn't even know God's personal name?
He didn't even know what god he was representing.
And I would suggest that Muslims must be careful about pushing the name Allah because Allah is a pagan god, a polytheistic god and is not the one God that we’re looking for, okay?
Bernard: Thank you.
Jay: At the very back
Phil: Thanks very much, Jay, again.
I'm hearing lots of newer information.
This history seems very, very complex.
When we look at the classic interpretation, the classic histories of the Qur’an, there seems to be a sort of Qur’anic development.
In the beginning, the early, Meccan, verses are very peaceful.
Muhammad goes into Hijra to Medina.
He builds up a great following.
And the verses become more aggressive and war-like and then finally he goes back to Mecca.
So, that – there seems to be a history right there.
And from what you said today, Abd al-Malick, he seems to have constructed that history around Muhammad but there does seem to be area of history.
Muhammad seems to be a real person to go all these stories about him, so there must – there must be a history there.
Jay: Well, quickly, Phil.
Is the name Muhammad in the Qur’an more than four times?
Jay: So, who is that man that we – that we keep referring to him this rasul, the representative, the prophet of God?
Who do you think that person may be?
Phil: So, my –
Jay: Even the modern-day Qur’an, the modern-day Qur’an
Phil: My sort of question would be where do all these hadiths come from?
“The prophet said this.”
Who is the prophet?
What – in your understanding –
Jay: I think you – let me answer that with two different ways just like that.
Phil: All right.
Jay: First and foremost, if you look at the Qur’an, how is the Qur’an constructed?
It was not constructed by chronology.
It was not – we know that, even Muslims know that.
It was constructed by size.
Phil: By size, yeah.
Jay: So, the smallest ones first, the large – I'm sorry, the largest ones first, the smallest ones later.
If you're going to construct a book that supposedly is about God, which the earliest – the smallest – the smallest verses are all about God.
There's very little there about Muhammad in the Meccan Surahs.
It’s all about God up here and men down here, and how we must obey and submit to God.
There's an awful lot in the Meccan Surahs that we can accept.
That really would sound like a book that was written for – as a revelation for the People of the Book.
That's why we can accept so much of the Meccan Revelation.
It's when you get to the larger, the longer material.
Now, when we start realizing that you're going to have to start giving this man authority, you’re going to have to make sure that this man is this prophet.
Whatever his name is: then start writing a lot more about his life.
Did you notice that?
He started writing about his wives in Surah 33.
He started writing about his conflicts and all the …
Then you start getting to – that he made up the rules and regulations.
And that's why the Medinan Surahs, which are much longer or much more ingrained, then they are trying to construct that.
I would suggest that this has nothing to do with chronology.
This has everything to do with trying to create and trying to make sure that there are rules and regulations for every area of life.
That's why they are such, so much longer.
That would make sense then that why they were put in that order.
Now, that's just we speaking.
I'm not going to say – other scholars may disagree with us.
But what I find fascinating is: Now can you understand why there are so many contradictions in the Qur’an?
Because if you're creating it and you're manipulating it and you're moving around it and you're getting it and you're borrowing it, and because of the fact that so many of the stories in the Qur’an are borrowed any way, 25% of Qur’an we know exactly where those stories come from.
They are not Arab stories.
They are not Nabataean stories.
Most of them were Jewish apocryphal accounts and Byzantine, Christians, Syriac, Gnostic writings.
Now, if that is the case, you can understand they all come much later because that means they have to be borrowed but they borrowed the long stories.
If you're talking to them, you get to the other part of the Qur’an, which is the poetry.
30% of the Qur’an is beautiful poetry.
Almost every one of those strokes of poetry are from Christian texts, written in the fifth and sixth centuries, written in Syriac, interposed into Arabic, in the seventh, or eighth, or ninth century.
So, it's amalgamation of many different stories, many different traditions, and also the most important is the later, the Medinan, because then there you – you use the Qur’an to then give authority to this prophet, this prophet who is named in 691.
So, the name is there.
Why is the name not in the Qur’an?
There's no excuse for it, unless, they still have not decided in the Qur’an yet.
They had not decided what they're going to do with this man.
And that’s why it takes so long for them to write his traditions.
Now, you say where did all these hadiths come from?
Look at the date, 870.
That's 240 years later.
And where did the 600,000 Akbar come from?
I would suggest this comes from many different traditions.
And that's why al-Bukhari was given the job to whittle them away and throw 98% out.
Would that have been nice if he had kept those 98% so we could look at the date, because then I would suggest we would know an awful lot more about that culture, about that time, and why they were thrown out.
Phil: So, you think the hadith – the hadith of Sahih al-Bukhari are about a prophet?
And later his name is –
Jay: Oh, by that time – by that time they do write his story in 833, it is Muhammad.
That’s no doubt.
Everything about the Sira is about him.
But see, that's another 100 years after the Qur’an was already put together.
See, the Qur’an didn't have that benefit.
So that's why it’s a – to me, it makes all the sense in the world that the Sira and the Hadith and the Tafsir are another 100 to 150 years later.
But you can imagine before they even got to that, there was a multiplicity of many different variations.
And we're seeing that as well.
And that's why you have al-Bukhari.
And also, the Muslims don’t agree with each other on many of the traditions.
By the time we get to the 10th century, good al-Tabari – one of the things we know about al-Tabari, he writes everybody's story.
He puts them all together, all of these contradicting stories and he assumes the reader is going to do the job of deciding which is true and which is not true.
That's why we love al-Tabari because he doesn't even care if they’re conflicting.
Jay: He’s probably the most honest amongst them, okay?
Phil: Yeah. Okay. Thank you.
Tariq: Hey, I have no time to ask any question but I’ll have to say something.
First is about the name of Allah.
The name of Allah is not a source from any pagan god or some other place.
The Greek word is Elohim.
Elohim means the personality we’re worshiping.
And when we say Allah, it’s like …
So, when we use in Islam Elohim, it means Elohim and it’s changed into Allah.
So, this mean the special personality we worship is Elohim and it does not belong to any other source and it is very clear that Muslims believe that God has no wife.
So, there cannot be contradiction.
So, it is not –
Jay: Okay, let me respond to that really quickly, Tariq.
And for those of you who don’t know him, Tariq has been in every one of these meetings.
And we love him because he loves to sit there and he loves to try to confront me on this.
So, let – let me ask you that very quickly.
Tariq: No, but no – I'm just trying to –
Jay: What does – what does “Allah” mean in Arabic?
What's – what does it mean?
Tariq: The personality – the special personality we worship with
Jay: The God
Jay: Now, you’re putting personality on because you’re trying to –
Tariq: The personality, God, God –
Jay: Which we have 99 names
Tariq: Yes, yes, yes.
They are not just the –
Jay: Do those names describe which?
Tariq: Describe –
Jay: Do those names describe who it is?
Tariq: I can go –
Jay: Okay. In any of those 99 names, are any one of them Yahweh?
Tariq: No. I don’t know.
Jay: Wait a minute.
So, let me think it through.
Are you all with me here?
Can you see: If every prophet had one name for God that was used right through 3,400 years?
For 3,400 years, there is all – I'm sorry, for 1,400 years, there was always one name for God that every prophet used.
That was Yahweh.
That’s the name that we define which God we were talking about.
That’s the name that Moses needed to go down to Egypt so the children of Israel know what God he represented.
That’s why Moses said,
“What is your name?”
He didn’t want “Allah, the God”.
That’s not a name.
That’s a title.
Can you imagine me being an ambassador coming to Hong Kong?
And I said this earlier this morning.
And I come to the authority here in Hong Kong.
I'm the ambassador from the United States.
And I want to come in.
I want to introduce you and give you my credentials as being the ambassador.
And you as a politician say,
“Well, okay, so you're the ambassador and who you represent?”
“I'm representing the President.”
“Okay. And what's his name?”
“Well, I don't know his name but he's the President.”
What kind of ambassador would I be if I don't even know my president's name?
What kind of prophet is Muhammad if he doesn't even know His – the name of God?
That “God” is not a name.
It is a title.
Tariq: No, I –
Jay: So that’s why we we've been asking this and I can ask this for 35 years.
You've got to do better than Allah especially when you know that that name is a Nabataean name.
It is a pre-Islamic name.
It is a pagan name, and it is a polytheistic name.
And that god, Allah, does have a wife.
Now, don't say he doesn't have a wife.
That's because you're just following what your Qur’an says.
You're mimicking your Qur’an, but you've got to, Tariq, you’ve got to start looking at this historically.
Don't just tell me what you know.
You're just going to tell me what you’ve been taught.
Listen to what we’re saying.
Tariq: You’re a historian.
I'm not historian.
I'm telling you:
“What is my belief?”
Jay: Deal with history. Yeah.
Tariq: That Allah is a personal name and other names are everybody’s name.
Jay: Does anybody in this room believe that Allah is a personal name?
Tariq: No, but we have Muslim beliefs.
We have Muslim beliefs.
Jay: Oh, I know you have to believe.
Tariq: We believe.
So how we explain, you should accept that’s how I believe.
Jay: Listen, however you believe that but you could not solve –
Tariq: You cannot force us to believe like this.
Jay: Okay. Tariq, you still haven’t answered me.
Tariq: Listen to me.
Jay: You still haven’t answered me.
Why did Muhammad not know God’s personal name?
The real personal name that you'll find 6,820 times in the Old Testament, the name that every prophet used, that name that Jesus used, and when he used it, the Jews stoned him because he, a clear man, was claiming that name for himself
Why does that name not been – why is that name not found here?
Tariq: I cannot understand on English.
My English is very vague but I want to say something what I can understand and I don’t need a debate.
Jay: Can you answer that question?
Tariq: I don’t need a debate.
Okay. I want to tell you –
Jay: Can you answer that question?
Tariq: – because I am feeling that they cannot be misguided.
They should know how the Muslims believe.
We believe that Allah has no wife.
Allah is his personal name, and other names are attributes to him.
Okay, one thing.
The second: Who says that Qur’an was not composed in a chronological order, that it was composed by Zayd
Qur’an was not composed in a chronicle, yes.
The second, Qur’an was not composed by Zayd.
It is wrong.
The first Surah is very small, only seven verses.
But the next Surah is very long Surah.
It is not –
Jay: I'm going to talk one really quickly.
Tariq: You listen to me.
You listen to me.
Jay: Let me finish.
Tariq: I don’t want a debate.
Jay: Do you know –
Tariq: I don’t want a debate.
Jay: Have you looked at any of the earliest manuscripts?
No, you haven’t.
I don’t know you haven’t.
Is the Al-Fatiha in any of those manuscripts?
No, it isn't.
It is not in the 12th copy.
I'm sorry, it is in the 12th paper, but that’s the latest of it.
It’s not in the Samarkand.
It’s not in the Tashkent in Uzbekistan – in Uzbekistan.
It’s not the Husseini manuscript.
It’s not in the …, these five or the six major manuscripts.
The Fatiha, the one that you’re talking about, is not in any of those manuscripts.
It is a later inclusion, so please own that one.
I confer you on that.
When you were here on Wednesday, you should have known that.
Tariq: Okay. I’ll check that.
And – but you cannot prove that every Surah, the first Surah is bigger, the second and third is way smaller to smaller, smaller, smaller.
This is not –
Jay: My rule of thumb.
Tariq: I'm going to say –
Jay: It’s rule of thumb.
Tariq: These, the Surah was the place, according to the revelation, the Muhammad –Prophet Muhammad is defined in … that his Surah should be part in the second ...
Even the Muslims – even the Muslims aren't right.
These are arranged by Muhammad (please be upon him).
Jay: Now, Tariq, I'm going to ask one more question.
Tariq: Please – no, please, please, let me complete –
Jay: I'm going to throw one back at you.
Tariq: Let me – let me complete.
Jay: I'm just going to tackle what you just said.
Have you looked at any of the origin – the order of the Surahs on all the earliest manuscripts?
Do they follow that way you just said?
Tariq: You are a historian.
I'm following the prophet frankly, so I have not answered it.
What was the question?
Simply throw it and –
Jay: So just so everybody knows this – so –
Jay: Just so everyone knows this.
If all of the manuscripts that we have, they do not follow the same order of Surahs.
So, this whole idea that Muhammad gave the reference to the Surahs is completely false.
Tariq: I don’t have to know this so I cannot talk to you.
Jay: Yeah. But I meant to know this, so it is done.
Tariq: Okay? Okay.
And the third one, you say that the Qur’an was not compiled in the life of the Holy Prophet.
Qur’an exists in the life of the Holy Prophet by oral tradition.
People memorize it in their heart and then when they recite this Qur’an in their prayers and in Ramadan, the Holy Qur’an was recited.
So, there was a sequence of how they recited it.
They recited this first, second, third … Surah of the book.
And it was arrangement by the Holy Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).
Some people who are appointed to write this revelation and then these other people and sometimes the Holy Prophet … ask the people,
“I want to listen you recite the Holy Qur’an.”
So, there was a tradition.
Every people, they recite the Holy Qur’an in the sequence.
So, it was present in their heart by the sequence and it was also present on different –
Jay: Okay, let’s stick to that one.
Do you know what he just said?
How many of you believe that the Qur’an was memorized accurately and completely correct like the Qur’an we have today?
How many believe that memorization supports what he just said?
How do you know they memorized it?
What did they memorize?
What manuscript do they memorize?
Did they memorize the Topkapi?
Did they memorize the Samarkand, which doesn't agree with the Topkapi, which doesn't agree with the Ma’il, which doesn't agree with the Husseini, which doesn't agree with the Petropolitanus, which doesn’t agree with the Sanaa?
I give you six manuscripts.
All of them are completely different.
So, what do they memorize?
Secondly, where do you get your story that Muhammad made them memorized it and Muhammad was there?
Where does that story come from?
It comes from al-Bukhari.
When did he write that?
So, everything you're going to tell me, everything you're going to refer – recite like you do every night, comes from 240 years later.
How was it – how you can trust that since we don't even know of a person named Muhammad who did any of this since we have no reference?
And if you're going to say it doesn't matter that it wasn't written down, then what are you going to do with your own reference in Hadith number – Chapter 6, Hadith 5:510, which tells all of us that it was written down and it was written done at the time of Abu Bakr, two years after Muhammad?
What happened to that recension?
Where is that codex?
It was then rewritten again during the time of Uthman, not memorized, written down, and nine copies were made.
Where are those nine copies?
Tariq: I know you have authority or you have a lecture.
If you want to just give time –
Jay: I'm asking these questions of you.
Tariq: No, no, no.
I have told you my English is not very good.
Your language is English.
My language is not English so I cannot follow you completely.
But what I understand from the lecture, I want to explain that there is an opportunity they can understand and take listen a Muslim audibly, okay?
Jay: I think we all know what Muslims believe.
Do you all know what Muslims believe?
Is there anybody who doesn't know what Muslims believe?
Everything Tariq is going to tell us is from the 9th and 10th centuries.
This is the classic account that you hear ad nauseam but you haven't dealt with what we're doing today.
Tariq, you need to stick to the material we're talking about.
Where is this historical record?
Tariq: You give me this ...
You let me just continue
I’ll give you my –
Jay: Okay. And what you need to do, Tariq, is you need to go home like you did on Wednesday.
Tariq: I study.
I like – I like to study, okay?
You are a historian and I come here …
And son, I allowed to come with me.
But I tell you, you are saying that Qur’an was written in the time of Abu Bakr, but it was already present.
I have told you all the tradition I memorized.
People are satisfied that there is no problem.
So, when they feel that the five hundred … they memorize the Holy Qur’an.
They mark it in a … so that they feel that “we should compose it in a bound book”.
So, they composed it.
And in the time of the Uthman –
Jay: Listen, Tariq, everything you’re saying we already know.
This has nothing to do.
What we’re asking you –
Tariq: But you have …
Jay: Tariq, finish –
Tariq: No, I want to tell you – no, you have the lecture.
Jay: Now is your turn to lecture.
You want to listen to this for hour and a half?
Tariq: I want to – I want to –
Jay: Okay, Tariq, Tariq, listen.
We’re not … and then let us respond because I know you do this every time.
You like to then give your own account and that’s nice.
God bless you.
Doesn’t he have passion?
Isn't it great that he loves to tell us exactly what he believes?
But has he listened to anything I said today?
Male Speaker 2: No.
Jay: Is he even dealing with this material?
Can you see it's going to be a waste of time for our study just for you to tell us what you like us to hear?
I know you love to talk.
Tariq: If you like, if you like, if you don’t want to, no –
Jay: I want to respond to this very quickly and I think will that be the end for today.
When you look and hear this kind of responses, and this is what you're going to get, do you notice he has not dealt with the material today?
He hasn't even done with material for Wednesday night.
I don't think, Tariq, you have listened to anything we said Wednesday night or anything we've said today.
And for those Muslims who are listening, this is not the way to defend your prophet and this is not the way to defend your Qur’an.
You Muslims have need to get a better defense than this.
If all you're going to do is tell us what you already know without dealing with the fact that this book that you always claimed was memorized or was given to a man by Muhammad and given to the people at that time, show me one copy.
Don't just say he gave it.
Don't just say they memorized it.
If you're going to say that this was then written down at the time of Abu Bakr and then rewritten again at the time of Uthman in 652 and nine copies were made, then give us one copy.
That's all we're asking.
If you're going to tell me that Islam somehow grew out of the desert in a period of 22 years, a sophisticated religion like we have today, in a nomadic environment with no urban structures, with all the rules and regulations, look at …
They make no sense in a nomadic environment in the middle of the desert.
They make much more sense in a much more urban environment that would have existed in the ninth century.
That's why it is not interesting that all of Islamic law from Shafi’i, Maliki, Hanbali, and Hanafi are ninth century writers.
These are not seventh century writers.
Now, Muslims need to be careful about just keep on telling us the same narrative.
Deal with the historical problems.
First of all, let me just went through what they are.
The first problem you have, Muslims, is that if your god is going to give us a revelation and just create a whole new religion that is different than what is already done, why in the world did you not give us a revelation that agreed with the previous revelations?
Number two, if God suddenly, 700, 600 years later, is going to give a new revelation in a completely new language, why in the world did he not use a language that could have accommodated it?
The Arabic in the time of the seventh century didn't have any diacritical mark, had no vowelization.
How could it even accommodate the texts that we're looking at?
Number three, if God was going to give us a brand-new revelation and start a whole new religion, why in the world did he choose a man who could not read or write?
Number four, if that man could not read or write, why did he not – in the next 22 years, did he not learn to read or write if this is the most important thing he was supposed to be given for the rest of the world?
Number five, why is it that when Islam finally supposedly was created, why in the world did you not give us a revelation that agreed with the previous revelations?
Historically, you cannot get away with that.
More than that, why is it that all the mosques, every one of the mosques that we looked at, 65 of them, and we've been there physically, we've been there personally, every mosque is facing Petra?
You've got the wrong city.
You've got to deal with this, Tariq.
Don't just tell me the story again.
Why haven't you dealt with the problem of Mecca?
Why have you not dealt with the problem of the Qibla?
And why is it Muslims are just blanking out over and over again and just tell me the same narrative?
You've got to tell me why every mosque is facing Petra, 600 miles too far north.
You've got to tell me why there is no Mecca.
That's 600 miles too far south.
And what is it, if this man Muhammad was born in Mecca, grew up in Mecca, how could he have been born and grew up in a city that didn't even exist for another 100 years after him?
More than that, if you are the ones who are going to tell me that Abraham was in Mecca, how is it that Abraham could have, who lived in 1900 BC, lived in a city that didn't exist and what is he doing 600 miles too far south?
Now, can you understand why I were asking these questions?
And everything I asked today, except for the last part and the very first part, have nothing to do with me being a Christian.
This is neutral as you can get.
And for those who are watching this up on YouTube, any one of you can ask this question.
It's already been asked of Christianity.
It's already been asked about our Lord Jesus Christ.
Every time we make a historical claim, whether it's by Abraham living in 1900 BC, we can back up that claim because we have documents to support who Abraham was, where he lived, the customs that he – that he lived by.
We have the Nuzi tablets, we have Gomorrah tablets, we have the Ebla tablets, all supporting we got the right man at the right place doing the thing at the right time, and these all predate the Bible by good 1,400 years.
When you look and you ask whether Moses could have done what he did, we do not only know that he could have done what he did, we have him in the right place and what's more in every case.
One of the things I love about living in London for 25 years, when you come to London, you come to the British Museum, God bless the British, they stole everything, brought it on the … so look at it.
And when you look at that British Museum, it supports First and Second Kings, First and Second Samuel, First and Second Chronicles.
It supports the Book of Jeremiah, the Book of Isaiah, the Book of Daniel.
It even supports much of the Book of Genesis.
We have got the right men at the right place doing the right thing at the right time, and that's why we have a three-hour tour just looking at all the artifacts.
None of those artifacts have anything to do with Christianity or Judaism.
It's all about the people who are impacted by Christianity and Judaism.
It is all extra-biblical material proving that the Bible uniquely in the world is the only book that fits history.
And that's why when Muslims always come up to me and they say they don't like my Old Testament because you have terrible things that the prophets do, how can a prophet do these terrible things?
I shake their hands because we cannot sanitize the text.
Yes, the great men of God did terrible things.
Every other archaic historical book sanitizes it all.
Even the Quran does.
So, when you get the prophet in the Qur’an, he is the best man.
He is the best lover.
He is the best husband.
He is the best convert.
And everything he is superlative.
That's exactly what people do to men of their history.
The Bible is unique.
It doesn't sanitize a thing.
They all have terrible sins.
Every man of God had terrible sins.
We've been there and the Bible is the only piece of literature that leaves the sins there.
Look at the New Testament.
Look at the disciples who ran away from Jesus Christ when he was arrested.
Look at Peter who denied Christ three times.
Look at Paul.
No one got along with Paul.
Why did we not sanitize the text?
Because we left the history there because God works with men who are sinful, we, men like you and me.
My God allows even sinful men to be part of His story.
And the story that I see in Bible is a story of God taking weak playing pots, even prostitutes and making them the ancestors for Jesus Christ.
That's the kind of God we have and that's the kind of book we have.
Historically speaking, this has been attacked historically in every case.
History has shown that this book stands above any other book in history.
You cannot find anything wrong with it.
And I'll end – will then end with a quote by Nelson Glueck.
Dr. Nelson Glueck said,
“There’s not one artifact, not one tablet, not one mural, not one obelisk, not one star anywhere in the world that controverts a properly understood biblical statement.”
We pretty well not only destroyed the Qur’an on Wednesday, we destroyed also Muhammad and the whole emergence of Islam today by looking at all this material.
This is just the beginning.
Folks, come on back to this book then come back to the man behind this book because this book does stand the test.
And we do not claim and we do not yell at people when they criticize it.
We don't call them hatemongers like you did just on Thursday.
We don't – actually, we don't need to say that.
You can criticize this book anytime you want.
You can criticize Jesus anytime you want.
We don't even have a word called Islamophobia – I'm sorry, Christianophobia, that doesn't even exist.
We don't need it because Jesus, under criticism, stands up to everybody.
The Bible, when criticized, stands up to every criticism.
What a man!
What a book!
I bring you hope.
God bless you.
It's been great to have these two hours with you.
Thanks, Tariq, for coming.
You’re such a blessing.