in category Scholars

What is the philosopher William Lane Craig's opinion on Islam?

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In a nutshell, according to William Lane Craig, the Islamic conception of God fails because he does not love unrepentant murderers, rapists, child molesters and so on. He argues the Christian god loves them unconditionally. Aside from the fact Christianity has many positions on this, he ignores the fact Allah is all loving as this is one of his attributes - al-wadoud:

On those who believe and work deeds of righteousness, will (Allah) Most Gracious bestow love. (Qur'an 19:96)

The Prophet Muhammad (saw) told us:

“If Allah loves a person, He calls Gabriel, saying, ‘Allah loves so and so, O Gabriel love him.’

So Gabriel would love him and then would make an announcement in the Heavens: ‘Allah has loved so and-so therefore you should love him also.’

So all the dwellers of the Heavens would love him, and then he is granted the pleasure of the people on the earth.” (Al-Bukhari)

The Prophet also restated what Allah said:

“…Whosoever shows enmity to someone devoted to Me, I shall be at war with him. My servant draws not near to Me with anything more loved by Me than the religious duties I have enjoined upon him, and My servant continues to draw near to Me with supererogatory works so that I shall love him.

When I love him I am his hearing with which he hears, his seeing with which he sees, his hand with which he strikes and his foot with which he walks. Were he to ask [something] of Me, I would surely give it to him, and were he to ask Me for refuge, I would surely grant him it.

I do not hesitate about anything as much as I hesitate about [seizing] the soul of My faithful servant: he hates death and I hate hurting him.” (40 Hadith Qudsi)

William Lane Craig has also listed a set of arguments identifying areas of Islam he disagrees with.

The main arguments he deploys against Muslim belief can be summarised as follows:

(1) the Qur'an makes an egregious historical error by denying the crucifixion of Jesus;

(2) the Qur'an contains legendary stories about Jesus;

(3) the Qur'an is mistaken about the self‐understanding of Jesus;

(4) the Qur'an misunderstands the Trinity;

(5) the Islamic concept of God is morally deficient;

(6) the Islamic concept of God is less plausible than a Trinitarian concept of God; and

(7) the doctrine of salvation compromises God’s holiness and proves to be unattainable.

This paper reviews his arguments and concludes they do not undermine Islam.

Ironically he based his arguments for proving the existence of God on arguments of Muslim scholars such as al-Ghazali, ibn Taymiyyah, al-Baqillani et al who went on to prove Qur'an was the word of God, something he rejects.

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