OSC’s Song of songs in Islam

Last week we’d watched how believers in Islam attempt to employ Old Testament Scripture so to further their own prophet and geo political ideology, an ideology which could at best be described in its most traditional form as politics masked by a religious pretense. Although, for anybody who hasn’t already listened to Muslim arguments from the Torah or Gospel in action, let’s recap.

Qur’an 61:6 claims Mohammed can be found “by name” in the Torah (meaning inside my well worn copy of the Bible), the name specifically being “Ahmed”. So, the name Ahmed should be in my Bible (it’s not). That to me is a claim which when made ought to be backed up, although Mohammed never did, he made the claim, yet was never able or willing to show where a suitable reference could be found. So, for around ten centuries my Muslim friends have been studying each and every book of the Bible, the same Bible they dismiss as being hopelessly corrupted, desperate to find the name of Islam’s founder therein. Today however, with the relevant background information available for everybody, Muslims have what they’re calling their “most powerful evidence” of Mohammed in the Bible. It’s from a book called the Song of Solomon, which predating Mohammed by around 1600 years could, if containing their name, be awesome evidence marshalled to their follower’s advantage.

Classically authorship of what’s often described as “The Song of Songs” has been attributed to King Solomon son of David, who being recounted of as an avid poem and song writer, the author of 1 Kings 4:29—34 explained:

God gave Solomon wisdom and very great insight, and a breadth of understanding as measureless as the sand on the seashore. Solomon’s wisdom was greater than the wisdom of all the people of the East, and greater than all the wisdom of Egypt. He was wiser than anyone else, including Ethan the Ezrahite—wiser than Heman, Kalkol and Darda, the sons of Mahol. And his fame spread to all the surrounding nations.

He spoke three thousand proverbs and his songs numbered a thousand and five. He spoke about plant life, from the cedar of Lebanon to the hyssop that grows out of walls. He also spoke about animals and birds, reptiles and fish. From all nations people came to listen to Solomon’s wisdom, sent by all the kings of the world, who had heard of his wisdom.

Due to having shared features with Mesopotamian and Egyptian love poetry from the first half of the 1st millennium BCE, many scholars have came away assured Solomon himself was indeed our mystery author behind the Song of Songs. Which could only further Muslim claims as to the authenticity and reliable witness insofar as Mohammad’s old claim to being a prophet was concerned. With which, let’s read several selected portions of Solomon’s Song of Songs (beginning by way of verse one, chapter one):

warning-trigger-warnings-900x387

To briefly warn my friends in the feminist and LGBTQIA+ camp, lest their PTSD is triggered, the following words are colour coded, pink for the ladies 😯 and blue for king Solomon.

Bride of Solomon: Let him kiss me with the kisses of his mouth—for your love is more delightful than wine. Pleasing is the fragrance of your perfumes; your name is like perfume poured out. No wonder the young women love you! Take me away with you—let us hurry! Let the king bring me into his chambers.

Friends of the Bride: We rejoice and delight in you; we will praise your love more than wine.

Bride of Solomon: How right they are to adore you! Dark am I, yet lovely, daughters of Jerusalem, dark like the tents of Kedar, like the tent curtains of Solomon. Do not stare at me because I am dark, because I am darkened by the sun. My mother’s sons were angry with me and made me take care of the vineyards; my own vineyard I had to neglect.

Tell me, you whom I love, where you graze your flock and where you rest your sheep at midday. Why should I be like a veiled woman beside the flocks of your friends?

King Solomon: If you do not know, most beautiful of women, follow the tracks of the sheep and graze your young goats by the tents of the shepherds.

Bride of Solomon: While the king was at his table, my perfume spread its fragrance. My beloved is to me a sachet of myrrh resting between my breasts. My beloved is to me a cluster of henna blossoms from the vineyards of En Gedi.

All night long on my bed I looked for the one my heart loves; I looked for him but did not find him. I will get up now and go about the city, through its streets and squares; I will search for the one my heart loves. So I looked for him but did not find him. The watchmen found me as they made their rounds in the city. “Have you seen the one my heart loves?”

Who is this coming up from the wilderness like a column of smoke, perfumed with myrrh and incense made from all the spices of the merchant? Look! It is Solomon’s carriage, escorted by sixty warriors, the noblest of Israel, all of them wearing the sword, all experienced in battle, each with his sword at his side, prepared for the terrors of the night.

King Solomon made for himself the carriage; he made it of wood from Lebanon. Its posts he made of silver, its base of gold. Its seat was upholstered with purple, its interior inlaid with love. Daughters of Jerusalem, come out, and look, you daughters of Zion. Look on King Solomon wearing a crown, the crown with which his mother crowned him on the day of his wedding, the day his heart rejoiced.

King Solomon: How beautiful you are, my darling! Oh, how beautiful! Your eyes behind your veil are doves. Your hair is like a flock of goats descending from the hills of Gilead. Your teeth are like a flock of sheep just shorn, coming up from the washing. Each has its twin; not one of them is alone. Your lips are like a scarlet ribbon; your mouth is lovely. Your temples behind your veil are like the halves of a pomegranate.

Your neck is like the tower of David, built with courses of stone; on it hang a thousand shields, all of them shields of warriors. Your breasts are like two fawns, like twin fawns of a gazelle that browse among the lilies. Until the day breaks and the shadows flee, I will go to the mountain of myrrh and to the hill of incense. You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is no flaw in you.

Bride of Solomon: My beloved is radiant and ruddy, outstanding among ten thousand. His head is purest gold; his hair is wavy and black as a raven. His eyes are like doves by the water streams, washed in milk, mounted like jewels. His cheeks are like beds of spice yielding perfume. His lips are like lilies dripping with myrrh.

His arms are rods of gold set with topaz. His body is like polished ivory decorated with lapis lazuli. His legs are pillars of marble set on bases of pure gold. His appearance is like Lebanon, choice as its cedars. His mouth is sweetness itself; he is altogether lovely. This is my beloved, this is my friend, daughters of Jerusalem.

I am a wall, and my breasts are like towers. Thus I have become in his eyes like one bringing contentment. Solomon had a vineyard in Baal Hamon; he let out his vineyard to tenants. Each was to bring for its fruit a thousand shekels of silver. But my own vineyard is mine to give; the thousand shekels are for you, Solomon, and two hundred are for those who tend its fruit.

The above, especially in the age in which it was composed, being highly exotic, has been contested as non scriptural. Nonetheless, Rabbi Akiba (50-135AD), by their contribution to the Mishnah (Yadaim 3.5) explained: “… the whole of the world is not worth the day on which the Song of Songs was given to Israel; all the Writings are holy, and the Song of Songs is the holy of holies.”

However, Muslims who strongly insist in Mohammed reveled by both the Torah and Gospel aren’t contesting Song of Solomon’s legitimacy, authorship or even its divine origins, for that would undo their attempts at inserting Mohammed into Solomon’s song of songs. Instead they wrongly denounce the transmission, interpretation and preservation whereby our Bible texts have been miraclously preserved (for more on the preservation of the Bible read my The New Testament vs. Shakespeare piece). Muslims insist there’s some kind of failure within our modern copies of Solomon’s song by which Mohammed, who must’ve been there originally, has been obscured. Let’s examine again whereabouts Mohammad’s name supposedly has been preserved:

His arms are rods of gold set with topaz. His body is like polished ivory decorated with lapis lazuli. His legs are pillars of marble set on bases of pure gold. His appearance is like Lebanon, choice as its cedars. His mouth is sweetness itself; he is altogether lovely. This is my beloved, this is my friend, daughters of Jerusalem.

Muslim propagandists in favour of Islam claim the portion which describes king Solomon as “altogether lovely,” (or machmadim in the original Hebrew language) should read “Mohammad.” The plural machmadim (mach-ma-dim,) which Muslim speakers persistently mispronounce as “Mu-ham-mad-im,” should be considered as an example of Mohammed in the Bible because, we’re told, machmadim really sounds similar to Mohammed. That’s their argument (I’m not joking). Unvarnished by pomp and lengthy background info their argument should be understood as so: Because Muslims intentionally mispronounce Arabic and Hebrew people ought to accept Mohammed as their final prophet.

Honestly, to write how Islam’s best and brightest are so thoroughly dishonest as to persistently mispronounce another word in another language so as to mislead their audience into hearing an Arabic name only causes in me pity. Why not grossly mispronounce everything since they’re each useless means by which to delude people into embracing Islam. “The Manchurian Candidate” by Richard Condon can become “The Mohammed Candidate,” popular 1990’s soap opera Melrose Place can be Mohammad’s Place, pop megastar Madonna can simply be Mohammed! Therefore there’s proof positive Mohammed not only survived long beyond their natural years as an Arabian caravan raider, they’re also alive at present, despite having been a POW, in addition to being an American pop superstar (and having had sex change surgery apparently).

Muslim friends of mine, the vast majority of whom are real life friends and neighbours, shouldn’t be angry because people like myself and others are dismantling arguments so awful as the above. Rather they ought to be ashamed that their so-called champions are even willing to entertain such lame rhetoric (where are their standards?)

To simply cast an eye upon my own bookshelf, I’m finding the work of Robert E. Maydole, Robin Collins, Stewart Goetz, Alexander R. Pruss, Kai-Man Kwan, William Lane Craig, Charles Taliaferro, J. P. Moreland, Timothy McGrew, John Lennox, Mark D. Linville, James D. Sinclair. Mathematicians, philosophers, senior warfare analysts for the U.S. Navy, my bookshelf, a Christian bookshelf, can boast of having so many wonderful thinkers. I’m proud to write I’ve learnt from such men as the above, insofar as my Muslim friends are concerned however, who are they trumpeting the praises of?

Perhaps Zakir Naik, who during a five minute lecture on evolution averaged an error every twelve seconds (while citing supposed experts who don’t exist). How about the late Ahmed Deedat, who cruelly slapped a geography teacher during their Q&A session on Christianity in Malaysia. The kinds of intellectual and moral inheritance these men leave are toxic.

Nonetheless, what’s added to the discussion hereafter wasn’t an original observation, rather, to contributors of “Jack the lad,” I’d made an attempt to post:

It’s always interesting to read how the Bible, which my Muslim friends slam as being corrupted, is supposed to also contain information which confirms Mohammed to be a true prophet, so, it’s both corrupt, for which it can’t be used to prove Mohammed was a false prophet, while being so correct as to confirm he’s a true prophet of God, talk about having our cake and eating it too. 🙂 Nonetheless, I’ll leave these here for those of us wishing to read further on the subject. . .

http://www.answeringmuslims.com/2014/05/muhammad-in-song-of-solomon-516.html

http://answering-islam.org/BibleCom/songs5-16.html

Muslims allocate to themselves so comfortable a position as both having not to defend their claims against over a millennium of Scripture to the contrary (because Scripture not their own has been “corrupted,”) in addition to pretending there’s viable testimony so to defend Mohammed therein. Jack the lad’s moderator wasn’t particularly enamoured by my tiny observation either, for which the above message of mine wasn’t green lighted for public consumption. The people behind Blogging Theology however weren’t so eager to stifle conversation. “A good point! Perhaps Ijaz can reply to this.” Paul Williams, an Islamic convert, replied. The discussion itself was centered around a slick video by Muslims who again made claim to having found Mohammed in the Song of Solomon. And by way of a summation my return message read thus (enjoy and be certain, Mohammed isn’t in your Bible):

That’s much appreciated, Paul. To summarize everything I’ve read on the Song of Solomon discussion thus far: Only by way of a highly suspect and inaccurate mispronunciation does the original Hebrew plural “ma-kha-madeem” sound anything like Mohammed. Second, I’m being told by both defendchrist and Oops (earlier posters) that the video makers in a premeditated fashion corrupted the letters of the original Scripture so to make them appear as if they were a name (which they’re by all appearances not). We’re discussing a plural and not a proper noun, meaning it’s in no wise a name. Moreover, even by use of the claims found in my copy of Islamic scripture (Qur’an 61:6?), “Ahmed” should be the name found in copies of the Torah (not Mohammed in the Song of Solomon).

In addition, just reading the context of the Song of Solomon outlines how Solomon himself is in fact the male character being described. And lastly, although there’s certainly more which may be shared, the additional critiques of the argument I’ve linked to appear to show beyond doubt how that to use such an uncritical and even dishonest method of understanding ancient material as the above would lead into other comical absurdities (e.g. Allah is a mouse and the Hindu god Ram appearing in the Qur’an). People keen on the idea have added useful additions to the conversation, for example, pointing out they’re not limited to the books of Moses in their hopes of finding proof texts for their Islamic beliefs, about which I’m sympathetic.

However, if we’re to remain consistent and properly informed, such methodology as that which has been used to invent Mohammed at the cost of the text’s clear meaning must be abandoned. I’m certain Ijaz, who I’m first reading about by contact with James White and their (meaning Ijaz’s) attempted use of textual criticism, would indeed provide an answer polished over much passionate desire for the justification of their beliefs, although, I’d also hope the more passionate the person, the less they would back what appear to be patently dishonest/double standard laden positions. Many of the Muslim contributors online would agree, I’d imagine.

― T. C. M 😉

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7 thoughts on “OSC’s Song of songs in Islam

    • I’ve always said the people behind arguments like the above, they’re inventive, they’re blessed by having creative minds, like great fiction writers, although they’re not using their gifts to write the next Lord of the Rings, Chronicles of Narnia or The Time Machine, they’re simply perverting the truth (it’s sad really). In my workplaces, I’ve been gifted so many Muslim friends, yet, when I’m speaking with them, they’ll say “Have you heard Zakir Naik?” or “Have you heard Ahmed Deedat?” To which I can only say “You’re choosing the worst examples of your faith!” Reading from Dr. James White (a Calvinist) would do my friends more help in understanding half decent arguments for Islam. It’s just extraordinary. You’ve made many wonderfully insightful posts today, they’re great food for thought for both myself and the many new visitors who’re suddenly visiting the blog. Expect my replies in the near future!

      Liked by 1 person

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