Question 157:

Do many Christians in authorized ministry recognize Mohammed as the true prophet? And what is your view about this?


Answer: Regarding the question of Mohammed’s recognition as the true prophet, there is no difference between Christians in authorized ministry and other Christians. Please first read the text introducing the theme “Mohammed: a prophet also for Christians?”, in particular part IV, 3-5 and the excursus at the end of the same text. The text introducing the theme “The center of Christianity”, furthermore shows what Christians consider to be the core of their faith. It is the absolute, self revealing love of God which has been shown to the believer in the teachings, the life, suffering, dying and resurrection of Jesus the Messiah.

The question about recognizing Mohammed as the true prophet focuses not only on the word or title "prophet” in a merely historically descriptive sense, but concerns the affirmation and the acceptance of the truth implied in the title "prophet”, which, when applied to Mohammed, comprises the second part of the Muslim creed. For Christians, Mohammed cannot therefore be a prophet in the sense in which the word is used in the Qur’an and therefore in the Islamic faith. To accept Mohammed as Prophet in the Islamic sense and in sense of the Qur’an means nothing less that to acknowledge and accept the Qur’an’s teachings about Mohammed, his claim to be the last prophet, and to accept his life as a true and good example (sura 33:21) for one’s own life and the life of all people.

Having said this, Christians will firmly distance themselves from any slander or denigration of Mohammed. They will furthermore try to recognize and value his exceptional historic personality, his role as the founder of Islam, as well as his elevated status in the faith, piety and religious thinking of Muslims. They will then assess whether believing Christians have to reject Mohammed’s life and teachings outright, or whether these do show essential elements of God’s truth in an impressive way, which Christians themselves recognize as being accessible to human reason and recognizable in the Christian faith through the person and the teachings of Jesus Christ.

In summary, we can say that Mohammed is an outstanding religious and political founder, who has brought many to God. However, he has not recognized the love of God and the extent of humanity’s calling which has been made apparent in the life, suffering, crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus.

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