Contradiction of the crucifiction? Christian/Muslim/Baha'i view


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The central idea in Christianity is that Christ died on the cross for the sins of the world. While the Qu'ran says that Christ did not die on the cross. Us as Baha'is believe that these two major world religion are in complete harmony with each other. What do the Baha'i scriptures say on this apparant contradiction?

If I'm not mistaken, this answer is given by 'Abdu'l-Baha in Some Answered Questions:

As you may know, Baha'is agree with the Bible that Christ was indeed crucified and died on the cross.

But the Qur'anic statement that Christ survived is taken to mean His Spirit; and the fact that despite the attempts to stamp out Christianity, these attempts not only failed, but Christianity ultimately flourished! Thus neither Christ nor Christianity perished on the corss even though Jesus the man did die there.

All the best, :)

Apparent contradictions of the Muslims and Christians

I agree with Bruce...

As Baha'is we don't accept original sin but there is a sense where we could agree that Christ sacrificed Himself for humanity:

"In order to understand the reality of sacrifice let us consider the crucifixion and death of Jesus Christ. It is true that He sacrificed Himself for our sake. What is the meaning of this? When Christ appeared, He knew that He must proclaim Himself in opposition to all the nations and peoples of the earth. He knew that mankind would arise against Him and inflict upon Him all manner of tribulations. There is no doubt that one who put forth such a claim as Christ announced would arouse the hostility of the world and be subjected to personal abuse. He realized that His blood would be shed and His body rent by violence. Notwithstanding His knowledge of what would befall Him, He arose to proclaim His message, suffered all tribulation and hardships from the people and finally offered His life as a sacrifice in order to illumine humanity - gave His blood in order to guide the world of mankind. He accepted every calamity and suffering in order to guide men to the truth."

- `Abdu'l-Bahá, Promulgation of Universal Peace, p450


"We do not believe that there was a bodily resurrection after the Crucifixion of Christ, but that there was a time after His Ascension when His disciples perceived spiritually His true greatness and realized He was eternal in being. This is what has been reported symbolically in the New Testament and been misunderstood. His eating with His disciples after resurrection is the same thing."

9 October 1947 to an individual believer from Shoghi Effendi

"Know thou that the Messianic Spirit and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit is always manifest, but capacity and ability (to receive it) is more in some and less in others. After the crucifixion the apostles had not in the beginning the capacity and ability of witnessing the Messianic reality. For they were agitated. But when they found firmness and steadfastness, their inner sight became opened, and they saw the reality of the Messiah as manifest. For the body of Christ was crucified and vanished, but the Spirit of Christ is always pouring upon the contingent world, and is manifest before the insight of the people of assurance."

"Tablets of Abdul-Baha Abbas", Vol. 1 (Chicago: Baha'i Publishing Society), p. 193-194

Finally regarding the Qur'anic verse ostensibly denying the crucifixion:

In regard to the verse, which is revealed in the Koran, that His Highness Christ, was not killed and was not crucified by this is meant the Reality of Christ. Although they crucified this elemental body, yet the merciful reality and the heavenly existence remain eternal and undying, and it was protected from the oppression and persecution of the enemies, for Christ is Eternal and Everlasting. How can He die? This death and crucifixion was imposed on the physical body of Christ, and not upon the Spirit of Christ. * * *

Regarding my coming to America, it depends upon the realization of conditions of which I have a]ready written to that country. If those conditions are brought into fruition, rest thou assured that I will present myself, otherwise, it will be difficult.

Upon thee be the Glory of God!

Translated by Mirza Ahmad Sohrab, June 8, 1941. Washington, D. C.

So we Baha'is stand in a area that is unlike that of either the common beliefs of many Christians and Muslims... we are in a sense in between them... believing in the crucifixion of the body but the spiritual resurrection of Jesus.

- Art