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M. Al-Habash: Muslims Respect All the Prophets

I come from Syria, the land where we can see the downtown of the religions of the world. Syria was once all of Syria, Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, and Israel. The land contains a lot of marks of past prophets. You can find churches and mosques in the same neighborhood. In Damascus you can find two Jewish temples. They can worship God freely without any difficulties. The Umayyad Mosque in Damascus contains the tomb of John the Baptist. There is a very important gate in Damascus. It is the very gate through which the Apostle Paul passed when he began to be an apostle for Jesus Christ.

The message of Prophet Mohammed is recognition of other prophets. To be a Muslim, one must believe the five pillars of Islam. Two of these pillars are to believe prophets and to believe divine books. That means you cannot find any Muslim in the world who refuses to believe that Abraham, Moses, and Jesus were great prophets. You cannot find any Muslim who refuses to accept the prophecy of Abraham or Moses or Jesus. Although our relationship has not been good at all times through history, the Holy Qur’an says you cannot be a believer without believing in all prophets sent by God. According to this faith, we can call on our Christian and Jewish brothers to be clear about this idea. Maybe we need at this point a brave attitude to accept the prophecy of our Prophet Mohammed.

I can see that now many Arab countries are against Israel. But you cannot find any Muslim in Arab countries who refuses to respect the prophets Moses, Solomon, David, Isaac, and all the prophets. These are the names of our children. Every day a lot of Muslims name their children Solomon, Haran, Moses, Jesus, or John. Unfortunately, you cannot find this on the other side.

Prophet Mohammed said, “We, the family of prophets, are like brothers from one father. Our father is one, and our mothers are different.” From the Bible, Christ said: “Think not that I come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy but to fulfill." (Matthew 5:17)

There is no monopoly of salvation in Islam. You can follow Jesus. You can follow Moses. You can follow Mohammed. He who does good deeds and has faith will enter paradise and not the least injustice will be done to them. There is more than one way to God.

[Source: Islamic Perspectives on Peace. Tarrytown, NY: Universal Peace Federation, 2006.]