Imam Ibn al-Qayyim was a prominent Muslim jurist during Islam’s Golden Age. He also composed poetry. Among his more famous works was a poem entitled A’obbad al-Maseeh Fi Naqd al-Nasraniyyah (O Christ-Worshipers! In Answering Christianity). This Poem is well-known in the Muslim world and has even been turned into a song. Ibn al-Qayyim is today best remembered as the foremost disciple and student of the influential fourteenth-century Sunni reformer Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyyah, with whom he was imprisoned in 1326 for dissenting against established tradition during Ibn Taymiyyah’s famous incarceration in the Citadel of Damascus.
The following is an English translation of the poem from the Arabic original:
O Christ-Worshipers! In Answering to Christianity
O Christ-worshipers! We want an answer to our questions from your wise ones,
If the Lord was murdered by some people’s act, what kind of god is this?
We wonder! Was He pleased by what they did to Him?
If yes, blessed be they, they achieved His pleasure,
But if He was discontented, this means their power had subjugated Him!
Was the whole world left without a Sustainer, so who answered the prayers?
Were the heavens vacated, when He laid under the ground somewhere?
Were all the worlds left without a God, to manage while His hands were nailed?
Why did not the angels help Him, when they heard Him while he wailed?
How could the rods stand to bear the True Lord when He was fastened,
How could the irons reach Him and have His body pinned?
How could His enemies’ hands reach Him and slap His rear?
And was Christ revived by himself, or was the Reviver another god?
What a sight it was, a grave that enclosed a god,
Stranger still is the belly that confined Him!
He stayed there for nine months in utter darkness, fed by blood!
Then he got out of the womb as a small baby,
Weak and gasping to be breast-fed!
He ate and drank, and did what that naturally resulted,
Is this what you call a God?
High Exalted be Allah above the lies of Christians!
All of them will be held accountable for their libels!
For what reason is this exalted and blame is cast upon those who reject it?
Is it not logical to break and burn it, along with the one who innovated it?
Since the Lord was crucified on it, and his hands were fastened to it?
That is really a cursed cross to carry, So discard it, do not kiss it!
The Lord was abused on it, and you adore it?
So it is clear that you are one of His enemies!
If you extol it because it carried the Lord of the Worlds,
Why don’t you prostrate yourself and worship graves,
Since the grave contained your god in it?
So Christ-worshipper, open your eyes, This is what the matter is all about.