There is also another test, the historical one, which our present day world requires of a messenger of God. A notable American Bishop of the Catholic Church wrote in a nationally famous magazine that the test of history available to all men, all civilizations and all ages can be applied only to Jesus, because:
There were no predictions about Buddha, Muhammad, or anyone else -except Christ. Others just came and said: “Here I am, believe me”. Christ alone steps out of the line and answers: My coming was foretold, even to the smallest detail.
This statement is quite challenging and requires attention. We Muslims believe that Jesus was a true prophet of God. We also accept his advent as having been foretold in the previous scriptures.
But what about Muhammad?
We find that his coming was foretold in clear and precise terms not only by Jesus himself but by Moses and other Biblical prophets as well. In fact it seems from whatever words of Jesus are available to the world, that the bringing of glad tidings of a great coming prophet was one of the chief objects of his mission.
Again and again Jesus said that he was sent to the world only to give as much guidance as the people of his own time could bear. As for complete teaching which would stay forever with mankind, he said:
But the comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. (John 14-26)
Only the prophet of Islam could have fulfilled this prophecy of Jesus. Muhammad was truly sent in his name because he bore testimony to his truth. The Holy Quran says:
The Messiah, son of Mary, was a messenger, “surely messengers like unto him had passed away before him” (The Holy Quran 5:76)
The Holy Quran reports that the angels told Mary:
Surely Allah gives you good news with a word from Him of whose name is the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, worthy of regard in this world and hereafter. (The Holy Quran 3:46)
The Holy Prophet testified to the truth of Jesus as a divine and honored Teacher and Prophet, and declared them mistaken and misguided who thought him accursed. The Holy Quran described his teachings as “guidance and light .”Further elaborating the same prophecy, Jesus said:
Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will sent him unto you. And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment. … I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. How be it when he, the Spirit of truth is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak.. and he will show you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto you. (John 16:7-14)
This prophecy clearly lays down that:
- The Comforter will come after the departure of Jesus.
- When the Comforter comes, he will reprove the world of sin, truth and justice.
- He will guide the world into all truth.
- The book revealed to him will contain no human word.
- He will foretell things to come.
- He will glorify Jesus and clear him of all charges.
Now when we take this prophecy point by point, it is unmistakably proven that it applies to none else but the Holy Prophet Muhammad. He came after Jesus. The Comforter was supposed to reprove the followers of Jesus. Obviously, he could not be a Christian or a Jew .The prophecy must relate to one who would belong to another people but should respect Jesus and promote reverence for him. The Holy Prophet was neither Jew nor a Christian. He was an Ishmaelite. But he defended the honor of Jesus. Thus says the Quran:
[The Jews] slew him not, nor crucified him, but he was made to appear to them like one crucified, and those who differ therein are certainly in a state of doubt about it: they have no definite knowledge thereof, but only follow a conjecture; and they did not convert this: conjecture into a certainty; on the contrary, Allah exalted him to Himself (The Holy Quran 4: 158)
Here the Holy Quran specifically says that Jesus was saved from that accursed death designed for him by his enemies. However, they only suspected that they had succeeded in crucifying him. But Allah had not only saved him but admitted him to the circle of His favored ones.
Of the promise, “He will show you things to come”, we need only say that no prophet has told the world of things to come as much as has the prophet of Islam.
The prophecy said that “he shall not speak of himself, but whatsoever he shall hear, that he shall speak”. This description can only apply to the Prophet Muhammad. The New and Old Testaments do not contain a single book in which man’s word has not been mixed with God’s. The Quran is nothing but the word of God from beginning to end. Not a word even of the Prophet is to be found in it.
When Peter appeared before the people of Jerusalem, his words were: “Men and brethren, let me freely speak unto you“. John starts one of his conversations with “I, John, who am your brother”. On the same lines we read the utterances of Philip, James and others in the Bible.
About the Holy Prophet, the Quran says:
He does not speak out of his own desire. It is naught but revelation that is revealed. (The Holy Quran 53:4-5)
The prophecy had said: “He will guide you unto all truth”. Again Muhammad was the only prophet who claimed to have brought a universal and perfect law. The Holy Quran says:
Today We have perfected your religion for you and completed Our favor upon you. (The Holy Quran 5:4)
How clearly has the prophecy been fulfilled in the person of the Prophet Muhammad in all of its details. Sometimes an unsuccessful attempt is made to dim the glory of this marvelous prophecy by claiming that this Comforter was the Holy Ghost who came after Jesus to his disciples. One wonders how this claim can be harmonized with the fact that the person foretold in the verses is described with the pronoun “he,” which could not possibly refer to a spirit. Then, was not the Spirit of Truth supposed to come only after the departure of Jesus? Should it be then assumed that the Holy Ghost was not with Jesus ? Obviously no devoted Christian will accept this assumption. One can also inquire where that truth is which is not found in the New Testament but was later brought by the Holy Ghost.