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Judaism arrived at its completion in Christianity, the followers of which were the inhabitants of all climes, the distinction between meats, clean and unclean, was abolished, which at the same time serving other great ends, explained above, shows the dispensation (in the course of which these several changes of the economy took place) to be really Divine."*
The doctrine of the Trinity, and that of the Atonement, which are essential to Christianity, were utterly incompatible with the plans of Mohammed, and he therefore not only contrived to leave them out of his religion, but also to frame it in opposition to them. Had he admitted the divinity of Christ, which forms a necessary part of the former doctrine, his pretensions to be a later and greater prophet, must have carried blasphemy upon their front. Our Saviour claimed to be the Son of God, and, by consequence, to be equal with Him; and our Saviour's apostles preached Him too as “the brightness of his Father's glory, and the express image of his person;" and yet Mohammed, who allows him to be the word and the spirit of God, denies that he is either God, or the Son of God. It is very evident that Mohammed clearly perceived the consequence of the application of the title, the Son of God, to our Saviour, to be a claim of divinity, and so far his penetration exceeded that of his Unitarian brethren. The denial of our Saviour's being God, or the Son of God, that impostor said he had from Jesus Christ himself, in a conversation which he had with him, in the eternal world. The doctrine of the Atonement was equally inconsistent with his aims. The whole of the Jewish institution of Vicarious Sacrifices, to be offered
• Divine Legation, Book iv, Sect: 6.
up daily, as well as for every particular offence, and also annually for the sins of the High Priest, and of the whole people (for among them almost all things were purged with blood, and without the shedding of blood there was no remission) exhibits the most forcible evidence, that according to the law of Moses, these rites were never to cease, till they should be superseded by a great expiatory Sacrifice, of sufficient efficacy to purchase eternal redemption. Our Saviour preached himself, as the antitype of those sin-offerings, when he represented himself as giving his “flesh for the life of the world,” his body to be “bro. ken, and his blood to be shed, for the remission of sins.” As Mohammed admitted the truth of both the Law and the Gospel, both of which declared an atonement to be necessary, and as he represented himself as sent to introduce a better dispensation than either of them, he ought (to render his claim consistent,) to have laid down his own life as an atonement for the sins of men. To lay down his life for the sins of the world, our Saviour declared to be an original part of his design, and the great end of his incarnation.*
And such was his love to men, that he not only surrendered himself to the agonies of the cross; but also panted to reach it, that by his baptism with blood, he might deliver them from the bitter pains of everlasting death. Mohammed claimed to be a prophet superior to Christ;
“Many have been the enthusiasts and impostors who have endeavoured to impose on the world pretended revelations; and some of them from pride, obstinacy, or principle, bave gone so far as to lay down their lives, rather than retract : but I defy history to show one, who ever made his own sufferings and death a necessary part of his original plan, and essential to his mission; this Christ ac. tually did : he foresaw, foretold, declared their necessity, and voluntarily endured them."- View of the Internal Evidence of the Christian Religion, by Soame Jenyns, Esq.
now to prove his title to be even equal, it surely was necessary that he should have exhibited, at least, an equalily of goodness, and of love to the souls of men. But Mohammed had no sacrifices to make, no blood that he wished to shed, for the salvation of mankind. He assumed his public office, not to save men's lives, but to destroy all such as stood in the way of his ambitious projects. We know Jesus Christ to be the good shepherd, because he gave his life for the sheep. Mohammed we know to have been a thief and a robber, because he came to steal, to kill, and to destroy.
This opposition of his character and designs to those of the Saviour of the world, he appears himself to have felt; and in order to escape from the force of it, he found it necessary to deny the fact of our Saviour's crucifixion; though that fact is established by the concurrent testimony of Jews, Christians, and Pagans; and was never contradicted, except by a few heretics who assumed the name of Christians, only to disgrace that religion. “ They have spoken,” says this impostor, speaking of the Jews, “ against Mary a grievous calumny, and have said “verily we have slain Christ Jesus, the son of Mary, the Apostle of God;' yet they slew him not, neither crucified him, but he was represented by one in his likeness; and verily they who disagreed concerning him, were in a doubt as to this matter; and had no sure knowledge thereof, but followed only an uncertain opinion. They did not really kill him, but God took him up unto himself; and God is mighty and wise.”*
Mohammed's admission of the truth of Judaism and of
• Koran, Vol. 1, Chap. 4.
Christianity, was absolutely necessary to the success of his imposture; and, happily, that admission supplies the means of effectually detecting it. As a precaution against detection, he has indeed charged both Jews and Christians with corrupting the scriptures; but without producing the smallest proof of the fact. We must either believe the charge on the prophet's word, by supposing he obtained his information, in the same way that he came to know that Christ was neither God, nor the Son of God; or we must consider it only as a subterfuge to cover his deceptions. We have already seen how he expressly contradicts the doctrine of the Scripture, with respect to the Trinity and the Atonement. In many more of his doctrines the same contrariety appears. Every Christian knows that, by the doctrine of our Saviour, marriage is to exist only between one man, and one woman; and that it can only be dissolved by the death, or by the infidelity of one of the parties. But the impostor, in his Koran, permits every one of his male disciples to marry four wives, and to keep as many concubines as he can maintain ; a doctrine not only impure and licentious, but also fraught with mischief to human society, as its tendency is to consign to slavery one half of the human race. In Mohammedan countries, women are locked up from society, and treated not as rational beings, but merely as the instruments of sensual pleasure.
Our Saviour tells us, that they who shall be counted worthy to obtain the kingdom of God, in the resurrection of the just, neither marry nor are given in marriage; but are as the angels of God. St. Paul assures us, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God. But Mohammed introduces into his paradise, not only servitude and marriage, but beasts also. He promises to the meanest of his followers there, eighty thousand servants, and seventy two wives of the girls of paradise ; and further, “ If any of the faithful in paradise be desirous of issue, it shall be conceived, born, and grown up in the space of an hour.” To state such absurdities, is all that is necessary to confute them. They are, however, discriminating traits of the prophet's character, and show what sort of life it was, in which he supposed happiness to consist. His own history and his paradise reflect light upon each other. When Mohammed married Zaina, the wife of Zeyd, some of his disciples were offended at his conduct. Immediately out comes the thirty-third chapter of the Koran, in which God is introduced declaring, that He had married Zeyd's wife to Mohammed, and rebuking him because, knowing that God had given him this liberty, he had abstained so long from her, out of regard to the people. He is said to have had fifteen wives, besides concubines!! The Apostles and Prophets of Christianity were men of exemplary holiness, and distinguished from other men, only by their continence and moderation. The Prophet of the Turk rose above his followers, only by his enormous profligacy and wickedness.
But even this disgusting scene of sensuality is prodigiously heightened, in its guilt, by the forged sanction which he gives to it, of God's approbation. “O prophet, we have allowed thee thy wives, unto whom thou hast given their dower, and also the slaves which thy right hand possesseth, of the body which God hath granted thee; and the daughters of thy uncle, and the daughters of thy aunts, both on thy father's side and on thy mother's side, who have fled with thee from Mecca; and any other believing woman, if she give herself unto the prophet; in case the prophet desire to take her to wife. This is a peculiar privilege