Jesus is called the “Word of God” in Q 3:45, 64; 19:35.

It is noteworthy that no other Gospel refers to Jesus as “the Word;” it is an intertextuality that exists between and the Qur’an and the Gospel of John only. In Q 3:64, after a long section about Jesus (Q 3:42-63), the Qur’an says: “O People of the Bible! Let us come to a common word ( ڪَلِمَةٍ۬ سَوَآءِۭ) between us and you – that we worship none but God…” While all of the commentators I have seen interpret “common word” here to be a common teaching or an agreed-upon doctrine of sorts, which I agree with, it would not be out of the question to suggest that “word” here is actually a reference of Jesus, as he is called by this title at the beginning of the section (v. 45), and thus the section has come full circle.

Therefore “a common word” is a “common Christology,” a teaching about Jesus Christ. In Q 19:35 we read: “That is Jesus the son of Mary; (I speak) the statement of truth about which they are disputing” (with “the statement of truth” [قول الحق] as a direct object in the accusative suggesting that the verb “I speak” is understood (مفهوم) but apocopated (محذوف) according to al-Qurtubi. In other words, the aforementioned descriptions about Jesus are true statements that the Prophet Muhammad has uttered.

However al-Qurtubi also notes that “the statement of truth” may also be read in the nominative. If this is the case, then “the statement of truth” or rather “the word of the Truth (God)” is a nominal substitute for Jesus – Jesus is the Logos of God about which they (Christian denominations) are in dispute concerning. Christ is the economical manifestation of an exalted pre-eternal and impersonal Decree (أمر) of God who speaks the words (كلمات) of God and is thus the created expressed speech (كلام لفظي), just as the expressions (لفظ) of the Qur’an are the economical manifestations of Divine Pre-Eternal Speech (كلام نفسي وقديم).

From an article by Ali Ataie

Categories: Christianity, God, Quran

70 replies

  1. It is noteworthy that no other Gospel refers to Jesus as “the Word;” pw

    That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked at and our hands have touched–this we proclaim concerning the Word of life.

    He was called many things. He has a plethora of titles. Emmanuel, Christ, Lord, Master, Logos (the Word), Prince of Peace, Son of God, Son of Man, Son of David, Lamb of God, New Adam / Second Adam / Last Adam, Light of the World, King of the Jews, Rabboni, Rabbi, Savior, I AM, Bread of Life, King of Kings, Messiah, Good Shepherd, Morning Star, LION OF THE TRIBE OF JUDAH, Man of Sorrows, Prince of Life, Redeemer, True Vine, Counsellor, to mention a few


  2. Very interesting, gives me some things to reflect upon.
    Good share Paul.


  3. “God, Son of God, Man, Son of Man, The Lamb, The Lion, The Servant , and The Lord.

    Welcome to Christianity world of nonsense” Abdullah

    A Friend of Sinners

    HE is not nonsense


  4. God’s word is eternal.


  5. It’s nonsense to say “Mary, God gives you news of a Word from him”.

    This can’t be the speech of a prophet from God.


  6. Or an angel from God. That the angel would couch the message in abstract nonsense in such a way beggars belief. What is this supposed to mean to Mary: “a Word from him and he is the Messiah” or similar?

    It looks like a ham-fisted attempt to incorporate, embed and transform the concept of the Word as the writer heard of it from Christianity.


  7. The angels never announced before the birth of Christ that he was the Messiah or the Christ. This was not part of their message. It was the work of Jesus as a prophet to introduce and explain this in the course of his ministry. This announcement to Mary does not fit the pattern of how Christ revealed his messiahship. All proofs that this is spurious.


  8. “King James Bible
    For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.”

    Woops, my mistake.


  9. Everything that exists is a word in the sense of being a product of Allah’s speech or thought.

    So why the need to state explicitly that he is a word?


  10. Just another way of reducing him to the level of normality?


  11. “Why did he call a Gentile woman a dog?” pw



    • Indeed why? I am asking the question!


    • Williams, you’re back at it repeating your nonsense which I already obliterated?

      Brother, the response is very simple. There are two words for dog which appear in the Greek NT. One, kyon, refers to unregenerate sinners who persist in their disbelief and rebellion, resulting in their destruction. See Matthew 7:6; Philippians 3:3; 2 Peter 2:22; Revelation 22:15. That is not the word that Jesus uses in Matthew 15:26.

      The word he uses there is kynarion, which refers to a little dog or puppy, one that is dearly loved by the owner. That is why the woman could say that even the dogs are able to eat the bread crumbs which fall from the masters’ tables, indicating that these were pets who belonged to the master and lived in his house alongside the children.

      Jesus’ point is rather clear. You don’t feed the pets first, but the children, which in this case are the Israelites. And the reason why is because God’s promises were given to them, and therefore it makes sense that Christ would come to them first in order to announce to them the fulfillment of the promises.

      Yet Jesus’ words clearly imply that the pets will also receive their food right after the children do.

      Moreover, Jesus’ words to her were no more offensive than Jesus referring to the Israelites as lost sheep in 15:24. In fact, to be lost is even worse since this implies that these sheep had gone astray from God’s path.

      Have you no shame or honor? I even linked you to renowned NT scholar Larry Hurtado’s post on this subject where he confirms my exegesis.


    • And here is Hurtado’s post.

      Dogs, Doggies, and Exegesis
      October 11, 2012
      Since the assigned lection a few Sundays ago on Jesus and the Syro-Phoenician woman (Mark 7:24-30), I’ve intended to comment on what appears to me a surprisingly widespread mis-reading of the passage. Essentially, the “dogs” (who Jesus says here must wait till after the “children” have eaten before they can be fed) are taken with an extremely pejorative connotation as feral mongrels, and the scene is read as if Jesus is pictured insulting the woman and treating her with contempt. I am embarrassed to find this basic take on the passage even in the learned commentary on Mark by a scholar I deeply admire: Adela Yarbro Collins, Mark: Hermeneia (Fortress Press, 2007), 366-67. But for several reasons, among them prominently the specifics of the Greek term used (unusually) in this passage, I think it pretty clear that this take is wrong.

      The term used here is κυναριον, not the more common term, κυων. To be sure, the latter term is often (typically?) used in sentences that give it a clear pejorative sense: to cite NT examples,Matt 7:6; Philip 3:2; Rev 22:15. But κυναριον (which is a diminutive form of the word, along with an alternate diminutive form, κυνιδιον) is never to my knowledge used in such a sentence. Instead, all uses are in sentences that rather clearly refer to household pets. (In other European languages as well, diminutives are used with a certain almost affectionate sense, e.g., “perrito” in Spanish).

      This particular term is not used in the LXX and appears in the NT only in this Markan passage and its Matthean parallel (Matt 15:21-28). A check of the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae shows further that in wider Greek usage it and the other diminutive form appear always and only in statements about family pets or household dogs: e.g., Philo, Spec.Leg. 4.91, referring to household dogs (κυνιδιων) hanging around banqueting tables looking for scraps dropped to them, and Athenaeus, Deipnosophistae, Vol. 2,2 p. 78, line 19, referring to “Maltese lapdogs” (κυναρια Μελιταια), here also in a setting of dining.

      Collins asserts (p. 367) that the diminutive form “probably does not have a diminutive connotation in the colloquial language of Mark,” and so “probably refers to the scavenging dogs of the street.” The only references she provides (n. 39) in support of her assertion are a couple of texts in the Greek of Joseph and Asenath (10:14; 13:7), but neither text uses a diminutive form: In 10:14, the converted Asenath throws all her rich pagan food out the window “τοις κυσι βοραν” (“to the dogs” in the street), and in 13:7, Asenath refers back to this act of giving her roayl food “τοις κυσι”, both texts using plural forms of κυων.

      Moreover, the dated-but-valuable lexicon drawing precisely on colloquial usage illustrated in papyri and other non-literary souces, J. H. Mouton and George Milligan, Vocabulary of the Greek New Testament (1930), p. 364, translates several non-biblical uses of κυναριον and κυνιδιον as “lapdogs”.

      So, in point of fact, it looks like (contra Collins) Otto Michel’s little entry on κυναριον in Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, 3:1104, is correct after all in judging that the choice of κυναριον in the Markan passage pictures Jesus as referring to “little dogs which could be tolerated in the house,” not wild scavengers in the street. I repeat: A search of references to the diminutive forms in the TLG gives no instance of usage to refer to “wild” dogs or street “scavengers”. So, it looks like the use of the term in the Gospel scene was deliberate, a choice, of a “marked” term (in linguistics parlance), intended to connote household pets, not the “unmarked” term κυων.

      This sense of a domestic scene ought to be obvious simply in reading the passage. Jesus is pictured as responding to the woman’s request by saying, “Let the children be fed first, for it isn’t right to give the childrens’ food to the dogs.” The point of the statement is the temporal priority of the “children”, of course in this case, referring to Jesus directing his ministry to fellow Jews. The metaphor presumes a setting in which the household dogs are fed the leftovers after the family has eaten (not custom-produced dog-food). (I know the practice well, having grown up in a rural setting in which the household dogs ate what we ate, only after we had eaten.)

      The woman’s clever reply confirms this, respectfully pointing out that “the dogs under the table eat from the portions of the children.” “Wild” dogs and “scavenger dogs of the street” aren’t typically allowed “under the table” and around the children! And anyone with both children and household dogs will know how it goes at mealtime: If allowed, the dogs hang about the children’s chairs, knowing that children love to “drop” morsels to their pets.

      Finally, we also have to ask ourselves how likely it is that the authors of Mark (writing for a Christian readership at least largely made up of converted gentiles) would have inserted a scene in which supposedly Jesus insults a gentile woman in the harsh terms imputed by some modern readers. She is “put in her place” as a gentile, but it’s a temporal place. The scene functions to explain that, although Jesus’ own ministry was confined to his Jewish people (apparently, a tradition that Mark couldn’t deny/ignore), the subsequent mission to gentiles was (Mark wants to imply) on the agenda, only it had to wait its time, and Jesus is pictured as anticipating that gentile-mission in responding positively to the woman’s respectful but clever response. For a bit further discussion of the likely intended function of the passage, see L. W. Hurtado, Mark: New International Biblical Commentary (Hendrickson, 1989), 115-16.

      So stop with your dishonest manhandling of God’s words lest you force me to further expose you to public shame.


    • “Indeed why? I am asking the question!” pw

      “My Heart Is Heavy” answered your question for me through information readily available on the net. Why did you ask me a question so easily researched?


  12. A great demolition of Paul’s appeal to the dog argument!

    Bet he keeps repeating it though.


  13. So tell me one and all what language did Jesus speak?

    Liked by 2 people

  14. “So tell me one and all what language did Jesus speak?” PW

    Probably mostly Aramaic and some Greek and perhaps Latin. But, do you know what the best answer is? Any language he wanted to speak.


    • He spoke Aramaic. That was the language he taught in. So all this Greek speculation over words is an ill-informed waste of space.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Credible scholars argue that Hebrew and/or Greek were spoken by Jews in Judea during Christ’s lifetime, too.

      To be frank, it makes no difference which language He spoke, not to me anyway. The content of the ideas, whatever language He chose, is what’s important. His words shook up everything and are and have been quoted throughout the entire world. His words transformed the lives of hundreds of millions. No one has ever spoken like He did.


    • So if the Greek text is irrelevant, how do you know if Jesus even called a woman a dog?

      Liked by 1 person

    • A good question! Much in the gospels is embellishment and fiction. But the attempt to soften the embarrassment of Jesus calling a woman a “dog” in the gospels we have is misguided as the historical Jesus spoke an entirely different language which, I have read, has no diminutive for dogs. Also I understand that Jews did not have dogs as pets, viewing them as unclean (like many Muslims today).

      I’m surprised that Hurtado and Sam made these obvious blunders.

      Liked by 1 person

    • “So if the Greek text is irrelevant, how do you know if Jesus even called a woman a dog?” Paulus

      Paulos raises an important point. Suppose Jesus was referring to a joey and not a dog? If we don’t know for sure which language He used, how can anyone rely on the words we find in the Bible?


    • So your defense of this apparent racism is that he was calling this poor woman a pet?
      Sam if i am not mistaken you are a gentile as well, are you happy with being referred to as someone elses pet, because if Muhammad said this about non Arabs you would totally be all over it.

      Like a puppy on bread crumbs 😉

      Either way it is an offensive statement implying racial superiority where Jews are superior to non Jews. Perhaps i should call you ‘Scrappy Doo’?


    • the blunder is yours- Jesus is talking to a Greek woman in Canaan, not a Jew in Palestine. Go back to the text. this is why hurtardo is a scholar and you are not!


    • Patrice, please remember that you and I are the worst of creatures. Read hurtado’s explanation above before you think such a passage is racist- such a conclusion is based on sloppy handling of the text


    • There’s no need to deflect onto Islam as is usually the case when Christian missionaries fail to make a positive case for their religion. Hurtado summarises his conclusion this way:

      “She is “put in her place” as a gentile, but it’s a temporal place.”

      His position in no way contradicts my own summary of it (his article). Jesus refers to a gentile woman as a dog and that the Jews come first. They (the gentiles) simply have to wait their turn because they are not the children. This demonstrates that Jesus considered them inferior (in the gospels anyway).

      Paulus i must ask how do you feel that Jesus refers to you and your ancestors, society etc, in such a condescending manner? Are you happy that Jesus put you ‘in your place’?

      Once again imagine what the likes of Wood, Shamoun et al. would do with this information if it were Muhammad saying this or the Qur’an? They would certainly use this as a proof against Islam. Double standards methinks…

      Liked by 1 person

    • “So your defense of this apparent racism is that he was calling this poor woman a pet?
      Sam if i am not mistaken you are a gentile as well, are you happy with being referred to as someone elses pet, because if Muhammad said this about non Arabs you would totally be all over it. Like a puppy on bread crumbs😉 Either way it is an offensive statement implying racial superiority where Jews are superior to non Jews. Perhaps i should call you ‘Scrappy Doo’?” Patrice

      If we accept these statements as His, we must necessarily accept other statements attributed to Jesus as well. If we scrutinize what He said here, we need to examine carefully what else He said, to be fair. From what I’ve gathered from reading these passages over and over and reading the opinions of noted students, Jesus gave Himself completely to all of us, to minister and to help all who call upon Him.

      His favorites, and I believe He probably does have some, are the rejected, the down and out, the friendless, the poor and sick, the foul, the prisoner and the whore, the hopeless and the despised. He longs to touch and befriend the ones no one wants. If you are a successful big shot and your life is overflowing with cars, houses, clothes, friends, etc., and yet you somehow know you are not living out your unique life, the life you were called to live and one no else can, and that haunts you, you too hold a special place in his heart.


    • Patrice,

      Jesus was sent first to the Jews, then to the Gentiles, since under the Old Covenant the Jews were God’s chosen people. The apostle Paul teaches the same thing re the gospel.

      What you’ve asserted but not proven, is how such is racist? Care to explain? Your words remember.

      My point with Islam is to actually hold you to the same standard. If a priority of mission is racist, I wonder what you classify us being the worst of creatures as? It’s not a deflection, but a valid criticism of your thinking.


    • The point of this discussion is Jesus’ referring to a non Jewish woman as a dog as a deeply offensive statement intended to lower her while establishing that his mission was to the Jews alone due to (in his mind) their apparent superiority as ‘the children’ who are given the food, while she (the dog) should not eat the food. The only reason Jesus responded to her at all was because of her clever reply which by no means elevated her status but rather affirmed her humiliation. Hence the reason for my calling this racist. It is a derogatory remark, and an act of discrimination on account of her race and by extension all non Jews would fit under this category including you and me Paulus.

      Thus far all that has been provided is that Jesus was referring to her as a puppy or a pet in order that according to Hurtado was intended to ‘put her in her place’ remember? Your addition of it being consistent with the teaching of St Paul does nothing to eleviate my anxiety but rather i suggest increases the problem onto other NT writers. We also know of course of other disciples such as St Peter who demonstrated xenophobia toward both gentile converts (hence the hoopla with Paul) and with regards to Cornelius in Acts of the Apostles. A surprising point considering Hurtados’ statement that Jesus’ ministry was always intended to reach the gentiles as apparently one of Jesus’ closest disciples was not aware of this.

      With that being said, you have still failed to answer my questions to you. How do you feel that Jesus felt the need to put gentiles ‘in their place’? Does this not contradict the idea that all men are equal in the sight of God? Your deflecting onto Islam will not work to change this important subject. Islam is the not the subject of this discussion, the Bible is. Do stay on topic.

      Liked by 1 person

    • “A surprising point considering Hurtados’ statement that Jesus’ ministry was always intended to reach the gentiles as apparently one of Jesus’ closest disciples was not aware of this.” Patrice

      The entire band of boobs took their sweet time to get some things. I like to think I would have done better, catching on immediately, but that isn’t realistic. “Let these words sink into your ears: The Son of Man is about to be delivered into the hands of men.” But they did not understand this statement. It was veiled from them so that they could not comprehend it, and they were afraid to ask Him about it.


    • Patrice,

      Clearly I have no issue with this text because as I said, the Jews were God’s Old Covensnt people and thus Jesus’ primary mission was to them first. This does not indicate an inequality of personhood (how could it?) which leads to my second point, namely, Jesus’s initiation of the New Covenant was specifically so that the Gentiles may be included. Paul uses the analogy of a branch being scribed in. We also know that some Jews were “cut off” from God and Gentiles grafted in, so how on earth you would see such a teaching as racist beggars belief.

      I suggest you stop following PW approach of quote mining the Bible and at least try to read it in its historical and redemptive context. Remember, as Hurtado states, this text was written TO Gentiles, so it should make you pause and consider if the text was intended to be racist and offensive, why an author would say such a thing?

      So you can see (if you are willing) why Hurtado’s exegesis makes complete sense in the redemptive narrative of Jesus’ life and teaching.

      “The point of the statement is the temporal priority of the “children”, of course in this case, referring to Jesus directing his ministry to fellow Jews.”

      As far as I know, no such context exists for those whom are the worst of creatures according to the Quran


    • Patrice

      “The point of this discussion is Jesus’ referring to a non Jewish woman as a dog as a deeply offensive statement intended to lower her while establishing that his mission was to the Jews alone due to (in his mind) their apparent superiority as ‘the children’ who are given the food, while she (the dog) should not eat the food.”

      The problem is that you can’t see the forest for the trees. Jesus’ encounter with the Canaanite woman actually destroys islamic legalism with its meaningless and pagan derived rituals.

      Jesus is deliberately reflecting the harsh attitudes of the israelites of the time – they are the chosen people and god is for them alone until god reveals himself to the gentiles. Jesus shows that pharisaic micro-managing rituals (like islamic ones) are secondary to faith and god’s grace. He is rebuking and insulting pharisaic arrogance far more than he is insulting canaanites.

      This is not hard guys – dawah equals brain-rot.


    • Trey: This is not hard guys – dawah equals brain-rot.

      When Jesus called a woman a dog, he actually didn’t mean she was a dog because Islamic legalism is bad. That doesn’t sound moronic at all.


    • Paulus

      I’m thankful that you agree Jesus thought that the Jews were to be given special treatment and that gentiles came second on his list of priorities, one wonders why though if God is supposed to have created all men equal why the need to have a ‘chosen people’ and then refer to others as ‘dogs’ but if you are happy to be referred to in this way then i can only shake my head in wonder.

      As far as your asking why gentiles were happy to accept such a insult and why the author of Mark thought it was a good idea to include this story (Matthew wasn’t writing to gentiles so it makes more sense for him to include it) is not for me to say as i do not know the mind of someone living in the 1st century, but is it truly so impossible to imagine that a people can accept being thought of as inferior? History is replete with such examples. Modern day Christians largely are unaware of such a teaching in their Bible since it is glossed over for more positive/holistic ideas.

      But you still fail to understand why others may have a problem of being thought of in this way so i will make it ever the more clear:

      Jesus called a poor woman who only her child healed a dog who was not fit to eat the food from the masters table because it is for the children. She begged him and responded with a clever retort that then meant he was obliged to respond to her request. Even the disciples wanted nothing to do with her. This is a terribly demeaning thing to say, while affirming the Jews as being superior and more beloved by God. Your theological babble about covenants does not change the fact that what he said was wrong. I for one will not be bow my knee to a man who thinks so little of me, my family, culture, etc.

      I couldn’t be clearer. You must understand that your theologising and Hurtados attempt to soften the blow do nothing to convince me that is any thing more than a grossly offensive retort that completely deserves the label ‘racist’. The underlying theological and moral problem rests within the idea of God needing a ‘chosen people’ and how this affects other people who are not a part of it.


    • “The underlying theological and moral problem rests within the idea of God needing a ‘chosen people’”

      First, God doesn’t need anything. Second, I guess you will no longer continue to defend Muhammad and Islam if you honestly think this is a moral problem?Here I quote from a Muslim favourite,

      “The Quran testifies that Allaah had chosen the children of Israel at their time, and that He preferred them over all other people of their time. There are many verses in this regard. ”

      “affirming the Jews as being superior and more beloved by God.”

      If you weren’t so quick to dismiss my theologising, you wouldn’t make such basic and fundamental straw men arguments. Have you read the Old Testament to see what God says about the unfaithfulness of the Jews?


    • Why does God have a chosen people if all men are created equal?
      Your repeated attempts at trying to bring Islam into this are telling of your inability to provide a cogent response to the Bibles teaching.

      But since you seem intent on doing so….could you provide a source for your quote? Simply saying ‘a Muslim favourite’ hardly narrows it down, also the quote seems to lack context as it says that Jews are superior and more beloved but the question is over whom are they superior? and why?

      Also why do you think that because God chastises his favoured people for doing wrong somehow negates the point that he viewed them as superior to other tribes namely the Caananites and Amalakites?


    • Kmak

      “When Jesus called a woman a dog, he actually didn’t mean she was a dog because Islamic legalism is bad. That doesn’t sound moronic at all.”

      I explained what jesus meant when he called the woman a dog. Like i said, it isn’t hard.


  15. Seems to me that a thorough and fair analysis of the New Testament cannot simply overlook its accounts of the supernatural. Much of this collection of books and letters describe events that are miraculous, truly unbelievable on a strictly human level. Yet, the textualists ignore these things while simultaneously claiming an advanced form of scholarship far superior than we, the common person, can begin to appreciate. IOW, hundreds of millions of people who believed the message of Jesus Christ as revealed in the New Testament were duped fools, far, far inferior to the intellectual giants of modernity. And, don’t forget (this is critical) those who left us this canon of sacred writings were liars, thieves, crooks, and greedy, vicious, conspiring lowlifes, each dedicated to overthrowing the extant religious and cultural influences of their day.


  16. And the islamic Mary was supposed to have understood what the angel said to her?

    Little chance of that I think.


  17. If Muslims still don’t understand the concept of “the Word” or “a Word” as is obvious from the post then how was Mary supposed to have understood it.

    The concept of the Word is introduced in John in the context of the prologue in chapter 1.

    In the Koran its evidently just plonked in to the birth announcement. The author wasn’t very imaginative and couldn’t think of any other way to steal and appropriate the concept for Islam so it seems. Oh well.


  18. “Much in the gospels is embellishment and fiction.” pw

    Would you explain what has been embellished, for example, the original intended message, and point out exactly that which is fictionalized?


  19. Calling the woman a dog is not a moral epithet. He calls her that because she is a pagan outside the covenant and has to scavenge and beg for her spiritual food whereas the Jews had it all handed to them by being in covenant relationship to God.

    And Jesus insulted her to test her faith and show how great it was.

    If we take both these in to account personally I can’t see anything reprehensible in what Jesus did.


    • “Jesus insulted her to test her faith” – so that’s where Sam Shamoun gets his morals from!


    • I would agree that Jesus was testing her faith, but, I think and even more larger point, is that Jesus is testing the Jewish disciples and their pride and racial hatred and bias against the Canaanites ( Syro-Phoenicia) people. Jesus, in the context of Mark 7 and Matthew 15, showed that pride is one of the root sins in the heart, and since all racial prejudice and bias and hatred comes from sinful pride in the heart, Jesus is primarily testing the disciples to see if they learned the lesson about external cleanliness vs. internal heart cleanliness.

      See Mark 7:20-23 (pride, arrogance is one of the sins) and immediately He goes into Tyre and Sidon (modern Lebanon) – the only time in Jesus’ ministry where He goes outside the borders of Israel, in order to test the disciples.

      He uses a common understanding that the Jews had about pagans and other Gentile nations.
      But He uses the diminutive form of the word for dog which is word used for pets that were allowed around the house. It is not the normal word for dog that is used for the wild dogs in the streets.

      But she does not complain and says “yes, Lord, but even the dogs get to eat the crumbs that fall from the table . . . ” – she is admitting she is a sinner and she does not object and doesn’t get offended.
      She calls Jesus “Lord” (kurios) and Son of David, recognizing He is the Messiah and Lord and that the covenant began with the Jews and now is being extended graciously to the Gentile nations in a new and fresh way that the Jewish disciples needed an extreme test in order to shake them out of their racial prejudice.

      For more details on the whole passage (s) in context, see here.


  20. Many people were insulted by what Jesus said.

    But the woman belongs to those of whom it is said, Matthew 11 v 6: And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.


  21. “What language do the angels speak? Do tell. Finnish or Hungarian perhaps?” pw

    I don’t know, but apparently they do use some kind of language unique to them, “If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal.”


  22. “So we should not be offended by insults. Contrary to human nature.” pw

    Exactly! Counter intuitive isn’t it? But, not just any insult. When Christians behave in such a fashion that they reflect the heart of God, and receive insults and face rejection and mockery, as a direct result, rejoicing instead of being offended is something they are entitled to.

    At this, they yielded to Gamaliel. They called the apostles in and had them flogged. Then they ordered them not to speak in the name of Jesus, and released them. The apostles left the Sanhedrin, rejoicing that they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name.


  23. The Jews were The Chosen Ones. Indeed, they were chosen to demonstrate God’s faithfulness to all nations and to suffer when they were unfaithful to the One who loved them from everlasting to everlasting. .


  24. Here’s another example of Christ’s superior attitude toward non-Jews.

    On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”

    “What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”

    He answered, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’[a]; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

    “You have answered correctly,” Jesus replied. “Do this and you will live.”

    But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?”

    In reply Jesus said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side. So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity on him. He went to him and bandaged his wounds, pouring on oil and wine. Then he put the man on his own donkey, brought him to an inn and took care of him. The next day he took out two denari and gave them to the innkeeper. ‘Look after him,’ he said, ‘and when I return, I will reimburse you for any extra expense you may have.’

    “Which of these three do you think was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?”

    I suppose the priest and the Levite were his neighbors because they weren’t Samaritans, right? And Jesus would never compare priests and Levites with Samaritans unless He was going to make the Samaritan look bad, no?


  25. The Qur’an calling Jesus “the Word” کلمه (Kalameh or Kalamat) shows that Muhammad and the compilers of the Qur’an heard about Jesus as the Word, just as they heard about Mary and Jesus’ miracles and the word “Evangel” got corrupted and changed into the word, Injeel, etc. –

    It shows that John 1:1-5 and John 1:14 is true, since this was already established for 600 years; but Islam changed the meanings of what it means for Jesus to be “the Word of God from all eternity past”. They corrupted the meaning into a command from Allah through Gabriel as “Be! and he became.”


  26. He also is testing her, and she passed the test by her attitude of humility and accepting the truth that she also is a sinner, “a dog”, so to speak. (the form of the Greek word for “dog” here is the diminutive (small, petite) form, which meant a “house dog, small dog”, “pet dog”, not the wild street dogs. She didn’t complain or whine about past injustices of the Jews, nor throw out the modern charge of “racism” or racial hatred or prejudice. She realized she did not deserve mercy. She realized she was from a wicked and pagan culture, a false religious system. She was admitting she is a sinner, by agreeing she is a “dog”. “Yes, but even the dogs get to eat the crumbs from the table.” (Matthew 15:27) She knew God is merciful, and apparently even knew about the law of Israel that said the Jews were to let the poor and foreigners graze the corners of their fields. (Leviticus 19:9-10; 23:22; Deut. 24:19; Ruth 2:2-7) The Canaanite woman recognized Jesus for who is really is, calling Him “the Son of David” (the Messiah) and “Lord” (Greek: kurios) (Hebrew: Yahweh). (Matthew 15:22, 23, 27; Mark 7:28)

    Mark 7:20-23 lists pride and foolishness in the list of internal sins. The sin of racial hatred of other cultures and ethnicities comes from sinful pride/arrogance/conceit. Thinking one is better than another people group or ethnicity or skin color is sinful and arrogant. Jesus was deliberately testing that in the disciples hearts.


  27. Trey

    I see several problems with your post namely with regards to Jesus’ view of the Pharisees. Lets take a look at what Jesus had to say about the topic:

    “Then Jesus said to the crowds and to his disciples, “The scribes and the Pharisees sit on Moses’ seat; therefore, do whatever they teach you and follow it; but do not do as they do, for they do not practice what they teach.” – Matthew 23:1-3

    Jesus seems here to affirm their authority to teach and that their teaching is sound but the problem is that they are hypocrites. This point is made more clear when Jesus confronts the Pharisees on account of their hypocrisy, cf Mark 7:1-8

    Please take note of the high view Jesus has of the Torah, as you well know Jesus when asked about salvation would always answer that one needs to obey the commandments of God. Your view of salvation simplifies the teaching of Jesus and while diminishing the importance of the Torah.

    Jesus, Muhammad, and Moses agree that salvation comes through both faith and obedience to Gods commands. ‘Legalism’ is not the issue for Jesus but rather it is hypocrisy.


    • patrobin

      I don’t see how you have addressed my points at all.

      According to jesus, the greatest commandment of the law is to love god and secondly to love your neighbor. Not a hint of legalism in any of that, no rituals, no starving yourself for any length of time, no dyeing your beard red or any of it.

      With the canaanite woman jesus was teaching that god hears those who have true faith and not those who follow a set of empty rituals. We are saved through god’s grace – the woman did not follow jewish laws, but through grace and the woman’s faith, god heard her.

      Now I think that is a pretty straightforward teaching from that verse. Calling her a “dog” is really only relevant because jesus was illustrating that someone whom the pharisees might have considered as lowly and unclean can, through faith, reach god.


  28. The part of the article you have up left out Surah 4:171, which calls Jesus “His Word” کلمته (the Word of Allah) and a Spirit from Him. روح منه

    يَا أَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ لَا تَغْلُوا فِي دِينِكُمْ وَلَا تَقُولُوا عَلَى اللَّهِ إِلَّا الْحَقَّ ۚ إِنَّمَا الْمَسِيحُ عِيسَى ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ وَكَلِمَتُهُ أَلْقَاهَا إِلَىٰ مَرْيَمَ وَرُوحٌ مِّنْهُ ۖ فَآمِنُوا بِاللَّهِ وَرُسُلِهِ ۖ وَلَا تَقُولُوا ثَلَاثَةٌ ۚ انتَهُوا خَيْرًا لَّكُمْ ۚ إِنَّمَا اللَّهُ إِلَٰهٌ وَاحِدٌ ۖ سُبْحَانَهُ أَن يَكُونَ لَهُ وَلَدٌ ۘ لَّهُ مَا فِي السَّمَاوَاتِ وَمَا فِي الْأَرْضِ ۗ وَكَفَىٰ بِاللَّهِ وَكِيلًا

    O People of the Scripture, do not commit excess in your religion or say about Allah except the truth. The Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, was but a messenger of Allah and His word which He directed to Mary and a soul [created at a command] from Him. So believe in Allah and His messengers. And do not say, “Three”; desist – it is better for you. Indeed, Allah is but one God. Exalted is He above having a son. To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth. And sufficient is Allah as Disposer of affairs.”
    Surah 4:171

    Of course, Christians don’t believe all of 4:171, but it is interesting that the truth of John 1:1-5 and 1:14 and that Jesus is in essence, the same essence as the Spirit of God, is embedded in that verse, (but twisted with other false statements), which apparently Muhammad had heard the Christians call Jesus “The Word of God”.

    Just as Surah 37:107 (“We have ransomed him with a mighty sacrifice”) affirms the substitutionary nature of the sacrifice and ransom concept, the Qur’an could not totally escape the truth that Jesus is the same essence of God Himself – His Word and His Spirit.


  29. “Much in the gospels is embellishment and fiction.” pw

    “Would you explain what has been embellished, for example, the original intended message, and point out exactly that which is fictionalized?” hb

    Paul, in case you didn’t see my questions, I’ll try again. To anyone else who holds that the gospels were embellished and fictionalized, your opinions offered in specifics is what I’m seeking.


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