Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Sura 112 and the Trinity, part 6

The following paragraph, as usual.
The third criterion, that God (or Allah) has neither parents nor children, is a very thorny issue, especially since the Qur’an insists that the Jesus of Christianity is the physical or literal son of God. However, this stems mainly from a misunderstanding of Jesus Christ’s conception (especially the Greek for “begotten”), primary title (“the Son of God”), and frequent references to “the Father” (e.g. John 8:18), not to mention the confusion about Mariolatry, as mentioned earlier. The perpetually inadequate (at least in English) translation of the Greek word for “begotten” in such verses as John 3:16 may be ameliorated by noting that the word, monogenes, connotes “unique” or a metaphorical meaning, not necessarily a physical birth (“Does the Bible”). Also, as is clear from a contextual reading of the passages foretelling and narrating Christ’s conception and birth, He has no genetic relation to Joseph (e.g. Luke 1:35), but rather proceeds from His Father (again, a metaphorical, not physical, relationship; see John 8:42). To summarize, the Qur’an looks at the Father-Son relationship of the Christian God as physical and therefore idolatrous, while a Biblical reading supports a more metaphorical relationship, thus fulfilling the third standard.
I think the author handled this issue quite well. There is indeed much confusion about "begotten" when one does not consider the Greek. Do any readers have arguments against this concise treatment of ayah number three?

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