Shabir Ally, probably the best Muslim debater today, admits that a firm conclusion in history trumps faith.
He seems to know that this is really devastating to Islam on the issue of the crucifixion – since the Qur’an denies that Jesus was crucified or killed on a cross – Qur’an Surah 4:157. This is probably why Shabir is different than most Muslims and seems to have modified the traditional view, and admits that Jesus was hung on the cross, but he has to believe, because he is a Muslim, that Jesus did not die by crucifixion. Somehow, in Shabir Ally’s viewpoint, Allah took Jesus up to Himself after He was hanging there for a time and so, he believes that He was not killed. This shows that Shabir at least is dealing with real history seriously and has modified the traditional Muslim view. But most Muslims ignore the historical facts, or have been kept in the dark for centuries as to the truth of the crucifixion of Isa Al Masih.
Shabir Ally admits that a firm conclusion in history trumps faith and we should use our minds and be reasonable and see this and confess this when historical fact is contradictory to one’s faith.
Around the 24:18 mark:
“I am a Muslim theologian and there is no secret about that; this is my particular bias where I come from . . . it is important to recognize our biases that we do have . .
. . . I am approaching it [this subject of the historical Jesus] as a theologian, but at the same time, I want to be aware of whatever historical studies have been done regarding Jesus; so that, if there is a firm conclusion from history, eh, I should not believe eh, something contrary by faith. I believe that faith, eh, should rest on, and it should build upon, and rise above eh, things like historical evidence and empirical studies. In other words, what people might refer to as facts. We should not say that I believe something when it is contrary to facts , however facts only take us to such an extent, and then faith takes over, so, I believe that faith can continue where facts stop. “ Shabir Ally (my emphasis)
Even liberal scholars who don’t believe in miracles such as supernatural prophesy and that God sent prophets, and the virgin birth, which Islam affirms, believe and know as historical fact that Jesus the Messiah was crucified:
John Dominic Crossan:
“I take it absolutely for granted that Jesus was crucified under Pontius Pilate.” John Dominic Crossan, The Historical Jesus (San Francisco: Harper Collins, 1991), p. 372.
“That he was crucified is as sure as anything historical can ever be.” (Idem, Jesus (San Francisco: HarperCollins, 1994), p. 145.
“the most certain fact about the historical Jesus is his execution as a political rebel.”
M. Borg, Jesus, A New Vision (San Francisco: HarperCollins, 1987), p. 179.
James D. G. Dunn:
“That Jesus was crucified on the direct authority of Pilate himself need not be doubted for a minute.” (Jesus Remembered, volume 1 of Christianity in the Making; Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2003, p. 775) This is also the book and author that Paul Bilal Williams has used in his “Da’wa” and Islamic polemics with me.
These are cited in a footnote (27) by Gary Habermas in chapter 13, p. 282 of Memories of Jesus: A Critical Appraisal of James D. G. Dunn’s Jesus Remembered. Edited by Robert B. Stewart and Gary Habermas, Nashville: B & H Publishing Group, 2010.
“In any event, Tacitus’s report confirms what we know from other sources, that Jesus was executed by order of the Roman governor of Judea, Pontius Pilate.”
Bart Ehrman, The New Testament: A Historical Introduction to the Early Christian Writings, Oxford University Press, 2000], p. 197.
These modern critical scholars, the type that Paul Bilal Williams (he uses Ehrman and Dunn all the time; and chides me for not being up on the best and intellectual modern critical Biblical scholarship.) uses to attack Christianity and the Bible, are the very ones who don’t believe in the virgin birth, and yet do believe in the crucifixion of Jesus, would show that it is not logical or reasonable to “shoot one’s brains out” and not believe in real historical fact of the crucifixion of Isa Al Masih.
As Dr. James White of Alpha and Omega Ministries, has said many times, “Inconsistency is the sign of a failed argument.”