Can we please stop saying that God and Allah are the same? “Yeah, we call Him different names, but it’s all the same God. We’ll all get to heaven if we’re sincere in our beliefs and practices.”
I’ve even heard the example that we can all take different routes to get to the grocery store but we all still get there. My problem with that argument is that I am not trying to buy Doritos and Pop Tarts. I want a relationship with God.
As David declared,
“This is why you are great, Lord God. There is no one like you, and there is no God besides you” (2 Sam. 7:22).
And God said through the prophet Isaiah,
“No god was formed before me, and there will be none after me. I — I am the Lord. Besides me, there is no Savior. I alone declared, saved, and proclaimed—and not some foreign god among you” (Isa. 43:10-12).
I can hear someone’s response: “Sure, but this one God reveals Himself to us in different ways.” That argument does not hold, for if there were different expressions of God, the character of that one God would be consistent between the different versions of God. And that’s not the case.
Who is Jesus?
For one, the God of the Bible ultimately revealed Himself through Jesus Christ. Jesus is the Son of God, a part of the Trinity (which Muslims deny)—and that means Jesus is God. Muslims, however, say Jesus was only a prophet. (If Jesus was only a prophet; He was a lousy one, because of all the declarations He made about His divine relationship to God the Father.)
It should be noted that Muslims would not agree with the rationale that God and Allah are one and the same. They view Allah are numerically and absolutely one. He’s it; not God in three persons.
Over and over again, the Qu’ran calls Allah the “merciful and compassionate one.” But he is not merciful and compassionate to all. In Q 13:27 the Qur’an explains, “Surely God leads astray whomever He pleases and guides to Himself whoever turns (to Him).” The word love is not used in terms of Allah. He is merciful to those he chooses to be merciful, but love is not mentioned. I can show mercy to a homeless person by buying his lunch, but I can do that without caring one iota for the man.
Allah’s mercy and compassion extend only to those who follow Him. For those outside of Islam, there is no love or mercy; quite the opposite! In Qu’ran 27:4 Allah declared, “As for those who do not believe in the Hereafter, We have made their deeds seem decorous to them, and so they are bewildered.” In other words, Allah is not above deceiving people. He purposefully deceives them. No love resides in Allah for those outside Islam. “God does not love any sinful unbeliever” (Q 2:276) and “God does not love the faithless” (Q 3:32).
Furthermore, there is no call to reach those outside the faith. Instead, the Qu’ran says that the enemies of Islam (or “idolaters”) may be slain “wherever you find them” (Q 9:5; Q 47:4.)
God has revealed Himself in a wholly different manner in the Bible. Consider God’s love for all people, not just for those follow Him. Consider His desire, not to kill those outside the faith, but to save them.
- “For God loved the world in this way: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
- “But God proves his own love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8).
- “The Lord does not delay his promise, as some understand delay, but is patient with you, not wanting any to perish but all to come to repentance” (2 Pet. 3:9).
What is Expected of Us
Allah saves those who faithfully obey the Pillars of Islam. Jesus saves those who look to Him, the One who perfectly kept the law for us and died to forgive us. Allah calls for works; Jesus extends grace.
According to the Qu’ran, Allah assures eternal life to those who physically die in a holy war. On the other hand, Jesus calls us to die to ourselves, so that we may live in Him and be a conduit of His love to others.
The revelation of God’s love and grace are consistent throughout the Scriptures, the 66 books authored by 40 different divinely-inspired writers over 1500 years. I can come to only one conclusion, and I want to shout, as David did: “You are my Lord; I have nothing good besides you” (Ps. 16:2).
Allah and God as revealed in Jesus cannot be the same. Their characteristics are wholly different.
To any Muslim readers, I invite you to look into Jesus. He, too, calls us to a life of obedience (John 14:21), but it is also a life full of His grace. He helps us serve Him; He helps us stand; He helps us obey. And when we falter, He lovingly reaches out with His grace, forgives, and puts us back on the path forward.
I am thankful there is one God, the sovereign omnipotent God who extends love and grace to all of us, even sinners like me.
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