First part :
Mr. Al-Kadhi says : "If we were to read the Bible we would find that long after the departure of Jesus, his faithful followers continued to keep up their daily attendance at the Temple (Acts 2:46) It would be beyond belief to imagine that had Jesus indeed preached to his apostles that he was God, and if Jesus had indeed commanded them to forsake the commandments, that they would then disregard all of this and continue to worship in a Jewish synagogue on a daily basis, let alone the great Temple itself. It is further beyond belief that the Jews of the Temple would stand idly by and allow them to do this if they were preaching the total cancellation of the law of Moses and that Jesus was God."
Mr. Al-Kadhi is making two unrelated questions into one.
Did Mr. Al-Kadhi really read the book of Acts? The apostles did not preach the abandonment of the law. Instead, they were preaching the new found salvation in Jesus. They were witnesses to His resurrection. In fact, their preaching created havoc in the temple :
"Brothers, I can tell you confidently that the patriarch David died and was buried, and his tomb is here to this day. But he was a prophet and knew that God had promised him on oath that he would place one of his descendants on his throne. Seeing what was ahead, he spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that he was not abandoned to the grave, nor did his body see decay. God has raised this Jesus to life, and we are all witnesses of the fact. Exalted to the right hand of God, he has received from the Father the promised Holy Spirit and has poured out what you now see and hear. For David did not ascend to heaven, and yet he said, "`The Lord said to my Lord: "Sit at my right hand until I make your enemies a footstool for your feet."' "Therefore let all Israel be assured of this: God has made this Jesus, whom you crucified, both Lord and Christ." (Acts 2:29-36)Originally, many people believed the message the apostles were teaching, that God has raised Jesus from the dead (and this is of course because they knew that the tomb was empty); they knew that Jesus is the Lord and Christ.
Every day they continued to meet together in the temple courts. They broke bread in their homes and ate together with glad and sincere hearts, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people. And the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved. (Acts 2:46-47)
One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer--at three in the afternoon. Now a man crippled from birth was being carried to the temple gate called Beautiful .... Then Peter said, "Silver or gold I do not have, but what I have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk." Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man's feet and ankles became strong. He jumped to his feet and began to walk. Then he went with them into the temple courts, walking and jumping, and praising God. (Acts 3:1-6)Then Peter preached his sermon on Jesus :
When Peter saw this, he said to them: "Men of Israel, why does this surprise you? Why do you stare at us as if by our own power or godliness we had made this man walk? The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of our fathers, has glorified his servant Jesus. You handed him over to be killed, and you disowned him before Pilate, though he had decided to let him go. You disowned the Holy and Righteous One and asked that a murderer be released to you. You killed the author of life, but God raised him from the dead. We are witnesses of this. By faith in the name of Jesus, this man whom you see and know was made strong. It is Jesus' name and the faith that comes through him that has given this complete healing to him, as you can all see. Now, brothers, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did your leaders. But this is how God fulfilled what he had foretold through all the prophets, saying that his Christ would suffer. Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord, and that he may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you--even Jesus. (Acts 3:12-20)The number of believers grew to about 5,000 (Acts 4:4).
The priests and the captain of the temple guard and the Sadducees came up to Peter and John while they were speaking to the people. They were greatly disturbed because the apostles were teaching the people and proclaiming in Jesus the resurrection of the dead. They seized Peter and John, and because it was evening, they put them in jail until the next day. (Acts 4:1-3)The next day, Peter made his defense before the Temple authorities:
Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them: "Rulers and elders of the people! If we are being called to account today for an act of kindness shown to a cripple and are asked how he was healed, then know this, you and all the people of Israel: It is by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified but whom God raised from the dead, that this man stands before you healed. He is "`the stone you builders rejected, which has become the capstone.' Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved." When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus. (Acts 4:8-13)What did the Temple authorities do?
Then they called them in again and commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus. But Peter and John replied, "Judge for yourselves whether it is right in God's sight to obey you rather than God. For we cannot help speaking about what we have seen and heard." After further threats they let them go. They could not decide how to punish them, because all the people were praising God for what had happened. (Acts 4:18-21)Did Mr. Al-Kadhi see what the Temple authorities did? I wouldn't call that standing idly by, nor disregarding the message that Peter preached. After this, the disciples prayed :
Now, Lord, consider their threats and enable your servants to speak your word with great boldness. Stretch out your hand to heal and perform miraculous signs and wonders through the name of your holy servant Jesus." After they prayed, the place where they were meeting was shaken. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and spoke the word of God boldly. (Acts 4:29-31)
The apostles performed many miraculous signs and wonders among the people. And all the believers used to meet together in Solomon's Colonnade. No one else dared join them, even though they were highly regarded by the people. Nevertheless, more and more men and women believed in the Lord and were added to their number. (Acts 5:12-14)It is interesting to note that in v. 13, people were beginning to fear joining the apostles. Why? Certainly because they could feel the tension developing between the apostles and the temple authorities. And indeed this was so, for we read :
Then the high priest and all his associates, who were members of the party of the Sadducees, were filled with jealousy. They arrested the apostles and put them in the public jail. But during the night an angel of the Lord opened the doors of the jail and brought them out. "Go, stand in the temple courts," he said, "and tell the people the full message of this new life." (Acts 5:17-20)The apostles proceeded to preach in the temple. The temple authorities questioned them :
Having brought the apostles, they made them appear before the Sanhedrin to be questioned by the high priest. "We gave you strict orders not to teach in this name," he said. "Yet you have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and are determined to make us guilty of this man's blood." Peter and the other apostles replied: "We must obey God rather than men! The God of our fathers raised Jesus from the dead--whom you had killed by hanging him on a tree. God exalted him to his own right hand as Prince and Savior that he might give repentance and forgiveness of sins to Israel. We are witnesses of these things, and so is the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to those who obey him." When they heard this, they were furious and wanted to put them to death. (Acts 5:27-33)"Standing idly by?" Hardly. At this point, a Pharisee named Gamaliel, a highly respectable teacher of the law suggested that they should let the apostles continue. He persuaded the rest that if their preaching is of God, then it will continue, and no man can stop them. If not, it will die a natural death. (Acts 5:35-40). After this, the apostles were flogged and ordered not to preach again. But they continued fearlessly.
Opposition arose, however, from members of the Synagogue of the Freedmen (as it was called)--Jews of Cyrene and Alexandria as well as the provinces of Cilicia and Asia. These men began to argue with Stephen, but they could not stand up against his wisdom or the Spirit by whom he spoke. Then they secretly persuaded some men to say, "We have heard Stephen speak words of blasphemy against Moses and against God." (Acts 6:9-11)This Stephen (who was full of faith and of the Holy Spirit, Acts 6:5) later died a martyr's death. At his death, he said :
But Stephen, full of the Holy Spirit, looked up to heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. "Look," he said, "I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God." At this they covered their ears and, yelling at the top of their voices, they all rushed at him, dragged him out of the city and began to stone him. Meanwhile, the witnesses laid their clothes at the feet of a young man named Saul. While they were stoning him, Stephen prayed, "Lord Jesus, receive my spirit." Then he fell on his knees and cried out, "Lord, do not hold this sin against them." When he had said this, he fell asleep. (Acts 6:55-60).Jesus Himself said at His trial :
"But from now on, the Son of Man will be seated at the right hand of the mighty God" (Luke 22:69)and on the Cross :
"Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing" (Luke 23:34)
The second part:
Mr. Al-Kadhi quotes a number of Biblical passages to show the unity of God. But, he did not look at the parallel passages in the Gospels. Some of these passages are very illuminating, once we combined them with the teachings of in the Gospels and Acts :
"Ye [are] my witnesses, saith the LORD, and my servant whom I have chosen: that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I [am] he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me. I, [even] I, [am] the LORD; and beside me [there is] no savior." Isaiah 43:10-11.Now, let's see from the Gospels :
"Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I [am] God, and [there is] none else." Isaiah 45:22
An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, "Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. (Luke 2:9-11) an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." (Matthew 1:20-21)I wonder if Mr. Al-Kadhi will accuse the angel of committing shirk.
Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying: "Sovereign Lord, as you have promised, you now dismiss your servant in peace. For my eyes have seen your salvation, which you have prepared in the sight of all people, a light for revelation to the Gentiles and for glory to your people Israel." The child's father and mother marveled at what was said about him. Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: "This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too." (Luke 2:8-35)Jesus Himself said :
Jesus said to him, "Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost." (Luke 19:9-10)Peter testified about Jesus :
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. (John 3:16-17)
As for the person who hears my words but does not keep them, I do not judge him. For I did not come to judge the world, but to save it. (John 12:47)
I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture. (John 10:9)
God exalted him to his own right hand as Prince and Savior that he might give repentance and forgiveness of sins to Israel. (Acts 5:31)
Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved. (Acts 4:12)
"No! We believe it is through the grace of our Lord Jesus that we are saved, just as they are." (Acts 15:11)
"Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I [am] the first, and I [am] the last; and beside me [there is] no God." Isaiah 44:6The Gospels record:
There was also a prophetess, Anna, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was very old; she had lived with her husband seven years after her marriage, and then was a widow until she was eighty-four. She never left the temple but worshiped night and day, fasting and praying. Coming up to them at that very moment, she gave thanks to God and spoke about the child to all who were looking forward to the redemption of Jerusalem. (Luke 2:36-38)
"For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I [am] the LORD; and [there is] none else." Isaiah 45:18.The Bible records :
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. (John 1:1-3)
Rebuttal of "What Did Jesus Really Say?"
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