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Is Jesus a Muslim?

Bethlehem in the West Bank, Palestine, is said to be the birthplace of Jesus. Credit: Mosmas
Bethlehem in the West Bank, Palestine, is said to be the birthplace of Jesus. Credit: Mosmas

After Christian priests in Gaza said baby Jesus was Palestinian, others have come out saying he was a Palestinian Jew. What’s the truth? The truth is that Jesus followed the revelation sent to Moses, peace be upon him, that, yes, he was from Palestine and moreover that he is Muslim. 

But to understand how Jesus is Muslim, it’s important to understand what Islam is. 

Islam doesn’t just mean peace, although it comes from the same root word in Arabic. Islam means the peace obtained from submitting to the will of God. So it could be said that Islam means submission to the Almighty. 

All of the holy messengers of God exemplified this Divine submission in their lives. Moses, David, Adam, Noah, the Second to Last Messenger Jesus and the Holy Last Messenger Muhammad. All were sinless, including Jesus, peace be upon him, and all lived their lives as examples for other human beings to aspire to. 

In the time of the HolyMessenger Jesus, people were known by the names of their fathers. This is also a common practice in Islam. Because Jesus was created without a father, Muslims call him Jesus son of Mary, peace be upon them both. These days, this doesn’t seem to be much of a phenomenon, because everyone is used to hearing that Mary was a virgin when she bore Jesus. 

In those days, however, it was seen as the extreme miracle that it is. Only a few accepted it, and the others slandered Mary and made fun of Jesus. Yet, the miracle of his creation isn’t unprecedented, as Adam was created by the Almighty without a mother or father. 

Jesus, peace be upon him, is not a Christian, as he worshiped the Almighty, not himself. He performed a host of miracles, including raising the dead by the permission of the Almighty. 

He [the Almighty] shall teach him the Book and the Wisdom, and the Torah and the Injil, and (shall make him) a messenger to the Children of Isra’il (who will say to them): “I have come to you with a sign from your Lord, that is, I create for you from clay something in the shape of a bird, then I blow in it, and it becomes a living bird by the will of Allah; and I cure the born- blind and the leper, and I cause the dead to become alive by the will of Allah; and I inform you of what you eat and what you store in your homes. In this there is surely a sign for you, if you are (truly) believers. (Holy Quran, Surah Aale Imran, 48-49, Mufti Taqi Usmani translation)

He wasn’t crucified or killed but was taken up to heaven. It’s a part of the Islamic faith to believe in the Holy Messenger Jesus, in the miraculous events surrounding him and to await his return in the latter days as a harbinger of peace.