Dr. Muhammad M. Abu Laylah, Professor of the Islamic Studies & Comparative Religions at Al-Azhar University, states the following: “Muslims believe that the original Gospel is the word of Allah; Jesus is the Prophet who taught this Gospel during his earthly life. His mission on earth was closed after his being taken up to Heaven.
The Divine Gospel was not preserved in writing or by memorization. The early Christian community lived in horror and seclusion, so they could not come together nor could they protect the Gospel of Jesus.
The four evangelists thought for themselves to remember and write down some of Jesus’ sayings, and out of love and affection for him, they added to it or omitted from it something of an essential value.
Indeed, there are a lot of differences and discrepancies in the four Gospels. Luke himself, for example, stated in the introduction of his Gospel that he was just writing a story like many others who wrote about the life of Jesus. He never said that what he introduced to the Christians was divine or was exactly the same words uttered by Jesus.
So, we know this from the Gospels themselves and we know it from the Qur’an. The Qur’an clearly says that these divine Books were subject to distortion and this is our firm belief.
I can summarize the Muslim position towards the Christian and Jewish scriptures as follows: We Muslims reject
1.Passages that talk about something that are in entire opposition to what we know about Allah.
2.Passages that violate the dignity and infallibility of the Prophets of Allah, since the Prophets and Messengers of Allah are the best selected people who ever came to this earth.
3.Passages that violate the essential religious and human values and encourage exclusiveness or call for fanaticism and favoritism of a certain nation at the expense of the entire human race.
4.Passages that exaggerate about gods, Prophets or men. By the same token, verses that give details about the history of a certain nation or certain events should be excluded from being of Divine origin.
5.Contradictory passages that cannot be reconciled and brought together to mean something of real value or essential belief.
6.Passages that clearly bear the human impression and easily point to human intervention.
7.Passages that are in direct opposition to the Qur’an.
All these passages are not to be accepted as genuine parts of the original Scripture.
In the Jewish and Christian or any other scripture, there are some parts that talk about moral behavior and wisdom, or call people to work for perfection and cooperation with others. Such passages we accept and benefit from and share with others as a common heritage and a source of comfort and solace.
Islam commands Muslims to make use of anything that helps them attain a better life and not to feel hesitant to accept wisdom from other people. When Muslim scholars quote or refer to the Jewish or Christian scriptures, they are trying to find similarities or common grounds between nations in order to find ways of cooperation and coexistence.”