Posted: March 31, 2018
There are as many denominations and sects within Islam as there are among Christianity and Judaism. The prophet of Islam, Muhammad (Peace and blessings of God be on him.), once said: “People of the Book (Jews and Christians) have become divided into 72 sects, but my people (Muslims) will become divided into 73. Only one will be heavens-bound — the one with believers who will follow my precepts and those of my companions.” Every sect among Muslims have historically claimed to be that one lucky sect.
Prophet Muhammad also foretold of the second coming of the messiah, son of Mary, in the latter days among the Muslims, when faith would completely disappear from their hearts, injustice would reign the earth and they would have lost all their glory. The messiah would come as a savior for them. The Prophet once said, “How (lucky) will you be when the son of Mary descends among you, he being the imam (leader) from among you” (Bukhari Book 60, Hadith 49). Most Muslims took it literally to mean that the self-same Jesus, son of Mary, who taught among the Jews of the Holy Land as their messiah nearly 2000 years ago, will come down from the sky — but in his second visit, he will be a Muslim. One thing is quite clear from here: All Muslims, despite their differences among themselves or with the Christians, love Jesus, son of Mary, the messiah for the Children of Israel, and consider him their own. They believe he completely surrendered himself to the will of God — the literal meaning of the word “Muslim.” This is similar to what is written in the Gospels: “I do not seek my own will, but the will of him who sent me” (John 5:30).
Ahmadiyya Muslims, however, believe the messiah, the holy prophet promised to the Muslims, was to be born from among the Muslims and was to be given the title of messiah, son of Mary, because of the similarity of his mission to that of Jesus, the messiah.
At their lowest point in history, Jews of the Holy Land were eagerly waiting for their messiah to appear to save them from the horrors of daily indignation at the hands of the Romans. There were groups of zealots preparing to overthrow the yoke of Roman occupation in eager anticipation of the coming of the messiah. But when Jesus appeared among them, most could not identify with him as he taught them to love their enemies and give more than what they even wanted to snatch from those enemies. Jesus was not going to fight the Romans to get Jews their self-rule; he asked them to seek the Kingdom of God within them through practice of self-restrain, self-control and unconditional sacrifice for the sake of others. He showed them the way through his own life. He walked the walk.
Ahmadiyya Muslims believe their founder, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad (1835 to 1908), was that promised messiah of the Muslims. His teachings of a life-long nonviolent jihad against one’s own lower self, to tame it to accept the will of God above everything — to be a true Muslim — resonates clearly with that of the first century messiah, Jesus, son of Mary.
NAN Religion on 03/31/2018