Several articles have been written by Christian missionaries attempting to refute the Gospel of Barnabas. All of those articles have the same points and, by the Grace of Almighty, each and every point has been answered in the article below.

However, if you would like to read direct rebuttals to individual articles, you may read here [1][2][3][4][5][6][7][8][9][10].

Evidences from Christians themselves
The Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church asserts:
Gospel of Barnabas was declared a rejected book in the Decretum Gelasianum by Pope Gelasius [Pope of Rome 492-96].
According to E. Von Dobschutz, it is a private compilation which was composed in Italy (but not at Rome) in the early sixth century.

Mr. Sale in his preface “To the Reader” of his translation of the meanings of the verses of the Noble Qur’an says:
“… the discoverer of the original M.S., who was a Christian monk called Fra Marino, tells us that having accidentally met with a writing of Irenaeus (among others), wherein Irenaeus spoke against Paul, alleging, for his authority, the Gospel of St. Barnabas, he became exceedingly desirous of finding an existing copy of this Gospel, and that God of His mercy, having made Fra Marino an intimate friend of Pope Sixtus V, (pope 1585-1590), one day, as they were together in the Pope’s library, his holiness fell asleep, and the monk, to occupy himself, reaching down for a book to read, the very first he laid his hand on proved to be the very Gospel history that he was seeking. Overjoyed at the discovery, he scrupled not to hide his prize discovery in his sleeve; and, on the Pope’s awakening, took to leave of him carrying with him that celestial treasure, by reading of which he became a convert to Muhammedanism”
In 478 AD, the fourth year of Emperor Zeno, the remains of Barnabas were discovered and there was found on his breast a copy of the Gospel of Barnabas written by his own hand.
Acia Sanctorum Borland Junii Tom II, pages 422 and 450. Antwerp 1698
The GB as we have it (in two vernacular manuscripts united by a Preface) was prepared by Cardinal Giulio Santorio, bishop of Sanseverina, a canon lawyer and Inquisitor. It is, however, clear that he did not compose the work but is using a pre-existing heretical text, adapting it to his purposes.
(source: )
An attempted refutation:
A Christian missionary by the name of Mr. Gilchrist states as follows:
There were numerous apocryphal Gospels, Epistles and other forgeries similar in style to the authentic New Testament scriptures that were rejected by the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD and in the subsequent Decretum Gelasianum of which one was titled the Gospel of Barnabas. No historical record whatsoever exists to show what sort of book it was or what it taught. From a study of the contents of this Islamic Gospel so strongly promoted in the Muslim world, however, it soon becomes obvious that these two cannot possibly be the same works. There are many proofs that the latter is a 16th century forgery.
The Nicene Council rejected numerous books but they were not rejected for reasons other than that they were against accepted Christian beliefs decided by politics. Several books appear to confirm to current Christian beliefs but were still rejected. A closer look at those books indicates that they are against Christian beliefs. Although the differences are minor, their impact can be fundamental to the power of the Church. A Gospel of Barnabas existed at that time and the Christians have accepted this fact. This Gospel remained in the libraries of the Church until Cardinal Santorio revealed it to the outside world due to personal gains. His differences with Cardinal Marcantonio had widened significantly and it was due to this feud, he leaked this book. To say that the Gospel banned in the 5th century is different from the one discovered in the 16th century from the library of the Church is a big claim and needs clear evidence for this claim to stand authentic. However, history does not see two Gospels of Barnabas.
How it survived?
It must always be remembered that the Gospel of Barnabas was discovered from the libraries of the Church. Obviously, the Church would do its level best to reject it and make false documents to support their rejection. The fact is that it was rejected by the Church and banned in the 5th century. Its discovery in the 16th century from the libraries of Church is clear evidence that this Gospel is the same as the one rejected. Otherwise, why would the Church keep this book and where did they get it?
According to latest research, it has been concluded that this Gospel was heretical and was brought to surface by Cardinal Santorio to take personal revenge from two other cardinals. This clearly busts the 14th and 16th century theories.
The following information was taken from the Book:
The Gospel of Barnabas
Iman Muhammad Armiya Nu’man
Publishers Group
ISBN: 1-881316-15-7
The Gospel of Barnabas was accepted as a Canonical Gospel in the Churches of Alexandria till 325 A.D.
Iranaeus (130-200) wrote in support of pure monotheism and opposed Paul for injecting into Christianity doctrines of the pagan Roman religion and Platonic philosophy.  He had quoted extensively from the Gospel of Barnabas in support of his views.  This shows that the Gospel of Barnabas was in circulation in the first and second centuries of Christianity.
In 325 A.D., the Nicene Council was held, where it was ordered that all original Gospels in Hebrew script should be destroyed.  An Edict was issued that anyone in possession of these Gospels will be put to death.
In 383 A.D., the Pope secured a copy of the Gospel of Barnabas and kept it in his private library.
In the fourth year of Emperor Zeno (478 A.D.), the remains of Barnabas were discovered and there was found on his breast a copy of the Gospel of Barnabas written by his own hand. (Acia Sanctorum Boland Junii Tom II, Pages 422 and 450. Antwerp 1698).  The famous Vulgate Bible appears to be based on this Gospel.
Pope Sixtus (1585-90) had a friend, Fra Marino.  He found the Gospel of Barnabas in the private library of the Pope.  Fra Marino was interested because he had read the writings of Iranaeus where Barnabas had been profusely quoted.  The Italian manuscript passed through different hands till it reached “a person of great name and authority” in Amsterdam, “who during his life time was often heard to put a high value to this piece”.   After his death it came in the possession of J.E. Cramer, a Councilor of the King of Prussia.  In 1713 Cramer presented this manuscript to the famous connoisseur of books, Prince Eugene of Savoy.  In 1738 along with the library of the Prince it found its way into Hofbibliothek in Vienna.  There it now rests.
Toland, in his “Miscellaneous Works” (published posthumously in 1747), in Vol. I, page 380, mentions that the Gospel of Barnabas was still extant.  In Chapter XV he refers to the Glasian Decree of 496 A.D. where “Evangelium Barnabe” is included in the list of forbidden books.  Prior to that it had been forbidden by Pope Innocent in 465 A.D. and by the Decree of the Western Churches in 382 A.D.
Barnabas is also mentioned in the Stichometry of Nicephorus Serial No. 3, Epistle of Barnabas…Lines 1, 300.  Then again in the list of sixty Books
  Serial No. 17. Travels and teaching of the Apostles.
  Serial No. 18. Epistle of Barnabas.
  Serial No. 24. Gospel According to Barnabas.
A Greek version of the Gospel of Barnabas is also found in a solitary fragment.   The rest is burnt.
The Latin text was translated into English by Mr. and Mrs. Ragg and was printed at the Clarendon Press in Oxford.  It was published by the Oxford University Press in 1907.   This English translation mysteriously disappeared from the market.  Two copies of this translation are known to exist, one in the British Museum and the other in the Library of the Congress, Washington.  The first edition was from a micro-film copy of the book in the Library of the Congress, Washington, which was received through the courtesy of a friend in U.S.A.
Making the Muslim point of view clear

Many people believe that Muslims claim that this book is the Injeel talked about in the Qur’an. However, this is not true. Injeel is the book that was revealed on Prophet Jesus (May peace be upon him) and it was the word of God Almighty. The Gospel of Barnabas is a biography of Prophet Jesus (May peace be upon him) written by an eye witness and a close disciple namely Barnabas. It is the most or the only authentic biography of Prophet Jesus (May peace be upon him).
Allegations keep changing
Before we go on to examine the allegations thrown on the Gospel of Barnabas, let me point out a trend in change in allegations. The earliest rejecters of this book called it to be an 18th century forgery without looking at evidences. When evidences were presented against this claim, they argued that it is a 16th century forgery. However, when evidences against this claim kept on increasing, they moved back to the 14th century. Most of them have stuck to the 14th century but some have even gone further back to the 12th century. By the grace of  Almighty, many Christians have embraced Islam and have accepted that it was written before the 6th century.
The original authorship of the Gospel
It has been denied that Barnabas was one of the 12 disciples of Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him). There are numerous errors in the New Testament that indicate that some sort of manipulation has occurred.
Barnabas is referred to as an Apostle in Acts 14:4,14 but other places reject him altogether. Contradictions prove that there is something fishy.
“rose … and returned to Jerusalem, and found the ELEVEN gathered together, and those who were with them” (HOLY BIBLE) Luke 24.33
Which “eleven?” They “found the eleven.”
Did they include themselves in the number they FOUND?
Even then the disciples there (of the elected twelve of Jesus) could never be more than 10 altogether. Because on this first visit of Jesus to that upper-room, Judas and Thomas were definitely not present.
But Luke was not an eyewitness to this scene. He is simply copying verbatim from Mark 16:14 who said. “he (Jesus) appeared unto the ELEVEN as they sat eating.”
Now listen to Paul, the thirteenth self-appointed apostle of Jesus. He says that after three days of hibernation. “(Jesus) was seen of Cephas (meaning Simon Peter), then to the TWELVE” — (1 Corinthians 15:5).
Which “twelve?” The word “THEN” here, excludes Peter! But if you add him on, and with all good luck, you can still never get the “CHOSEN TWELVE” together to see Jesus, because the traitor Judas had committed suicide by hanging (Matthew 27:5) long before Jesus alleged resurrection.”We are dealing here with a strange mentality, where “Eleven” does not mean ELEVEN (Luke 24:33).”Twelve” does not mean TWELVE, and “Three and three” means TWO AND ONE!’ Jesus would truly sympathize with us:“it is hard for you to kick against the pricks” (HOLY BIBLE Acts 9:5)
[By Ahmed Deedat]
Comparison with the New Testament is a blunder that should not be made especially of what Paul says. Paul is a hypocrite who should be completely rejected. He should be condemned and thrown out of all books. Barnabas was an apostle but not Paul. Paul never met Jesus (peace be upon him) and was faking all along.
Internal inconsistency: Does the Gospel contradict itself?

Those who reject this book claim that it contradicts with itself and hence needs to be discarded as a false book. Let’s take a look at this claim.
Jesus predicts his death In chapter 193 the GoB tells its version of Jesus raising his friend Lazarus from the dead. In about the middle of the chapter we read: Jesus having come to the sepulchre, where everyone was weeping, said: ‘Weep not, for Lazarus sleeps, and I am come to awake him.’ The Pharisees said among themselves: ‘Would to God that you did so sleep!’ Then Jesus said: ‘Mine hour is not yet come; but when it shall come I shall sleep in LIKE MANNER, and shall be speedily awakened.’ Then Jesus said again: ‘Take away the stone from the sepulchre.’ In other words, Jesus says that, just like Lazarus, “he will die and after a few days be raised again from the dead.”
How can Jesus predict this of himself when later in the ‘Gospel of Barnabas’ (chapter 216 & 217) it is Judas who is arrested and crucified in his place?
Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) will die when he will return to earth. He mentions earlier in the Gospel of Barnabas that he would not die until near the end of the world. The writer of the alleged contradiction could not have missed it.
Jesus (May peace be upon him) said to his mother:
Jesus replied, embracing his mother: ‘Believe me, mother, for truly I say to you that I have not been dead at all; for God has reserved me till near the end of the world.’
Such a statement had also been mentioned by Jesus (peace be upon him) much earlier and more than once. Near the end of the world, he would die and would wake up soon on the Day of Judgment. Looking at things out of context is foolish, dangerous and deceiving.
Does the Gospel of Barnabas contradict the Qur’an

Attackers of the Gospel of Barnabas claim that it contradicts the Qur’an and therefore, Muslims must reject it. It appears that they are rather pleading to the Muslims to reject the book rather than making intellectual claims as can be seen from the points below:
Seven heavens or nine?
The Qur’an (2:29) says that the Heavens are seven in number, while “Barnabas” gives the number as nine (178).
Barnabas narrates the following statement of Jesus (peace be upon him):
Truly I say to you that the heavens are nine, among which are set the planets; that are distant one from another five hundred years’ journey for a man: and the earth in like manner is distant from the first heaven five hundred years’ journey.
From this we clearly see some sort of error in translation and understanding. What I understood by heaven here is the sky and the planets. The seven heavens in the Qur’an refer to some other fact whereas heaven spoken by Jesus (peace be upon) is referring to the nine planets.
Predestination or free will?
They claim that according to “Barnabas”, man is endowed with a free will. (164) and claim that on the contrary, man only does what Allah wills him to do (Qur’an – 76:30, 37:96, 17:13, and 10:99-100).
This claim clearly shows the lack of knowledge of Islam and basic common sense. Everything happens by the will of God and man is endowed with free will. Everything happens by the will of God or destiny is also a Christian belief. Before anything was created, everything was written in a book and that book is the will of God. Man is allowed free will and does not do an action because it is written in that book but it is the other way round. Man performs a certain act and that is written down. God knows through infinite knowledge what people will do and therefore, that free will has been allowed by God and written down.
First to be circumcised; Adam or Abraham?
Another claim is that Adam was not the first man circumcised (23). Abraham was.
This is neither the belief of the Qur’an nor the belief of the Bible. Adam (peace be upon him) was the first one to be circumcised but Abraham (peace be upon him) was the first one with whom it was made compulsory in the form of a covenant (as per the Bible). There is no mentioning that it was not practiced before that. No such thing as covenant on circumcision or the mentioning of the first circumcised man exists in the Qur’an.
Delivery of Jesus with pain or without pain?
The deniers of the Gospel of Barnabas claim that according to “Barnabas” (3), Mary brought forth her son without pain. This is contradicted by the Qur’an (19:23).
The Gospel of Barnabas speaks of the delivery as being painless. The virgin was surrounded by a light exceeding bright, and brought forth her son without pain,
However, Lady Mary did observe pain before that.
[19.23] And the throes (of childbirth) compelled her to betake herself to the trunk of a palm tree. She said: Oh, would that I had died before this, and had been a thing quite forgotten!
[19.24] Then (the child) called out to her from beneath her: Grieve not, surely your Lord has made a stream to flow beneath you;
[19.25] And shake towards you the trunk of the palm tree; it will drop on you fresh ripe dates:
She observed pain but God helped it through the blessing. Her delivery then became painless. There is no problem and no contradiction with this story at all.
An eye for an eye?
The Qur’an follows the Mosaic law of “an eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth”, whereas “Barnabas” says “… ye shall not overcome evil with evil, but rather with good” (81). “Woe unto them that call for vengeance …” (63). “… kiss the hand of those who revile thee, and present gifts to those who persecute thee and strike thee much” (64).
The law keeps changing. Different Prophets brought different laws and interpretations but their basic teaching was the same such as belief in One God, all the books, all the Prophets, all the Angels, life after death, destiny etc. Qur’an distinguishes between a Rasool and a Nabi. The former brings a new law whereas the latter confirms the existing law. Besides, that the law of an eye for an eye is not compulsory; forgiveness is much better according to Qur’an.
But good and evil cannot be equal, repel thou with something that is better – and lo! he between whom and thyself was enmity as though he had been close, a true friend!
Yet this is not given to any but those who are wont to be patient in adversity: it is not given to any but those endowed with the greatest good fortune!
[Qur’an 41:34-35]
The Qur’an approves of polygamy. “Barnabas” does not tolerate it (115).
The Qur’an and the Bible both approve of polygamy and so does Barnabas’ Gospel. What the Gospel means is that a man should not lust after women and be content with the ones he has married. Lusting refers to adultery and marriage does not consider it lust. To be content with the woman one has uplifts the woman and prevents adultery. The Islamic stance is made clear here.
The Qur’an approves of the teaching of abrogation. “Barnabas” condemns it (38).
Barnabas’ Gospel should be seen in context. It says that Jesus (peace be upon him) was sent with the same law as that of Moses (peace be upon him). Moses (peace be upon him) brought a new law just like Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).
Eating pork allowed or not?
The Qur’an condemns eating pork but “Barnabas” says “that which entereth into the man defileth not the man, but that which cometh out of the man defileth the man” (32).
Making claims like these destroy the credibility of writers. The context should be shown.
‘Verily I say unto you, that to eat bread with unclean hands defileth not a man, because that which entereth into the man defileth not the man, but that which cometh out of the man defileth the man.’
Thereupon. said one of the scribes: If I shall eat pork, or other unclean meats, will they not defile my consciences?’
Jesus answered: Disobedience will not enter into the man but will come out of the man, from his heart; and therefore will he be defiled when he shall eat forbidden food.’
The pork issue was answered right there by Jesus (peace be upon him) but sadly, the one who made this comment did not consider it important to show. This is clearly an evidence of deliberate deceit.
John the Baptist not mentioned
“Barnabas” totally ignores the existence of the prophet John the Baptist (Yahya ibn Zakariyya).
The Gospel of Barnabas mentions that a total of 144,000 Prophets had come and he does not mention all of them.
Who is the Messiah?
According to “Barnabas”, Jesus expressly denies that he is the Messiah. In the Qur’an, the only Messiah is Jesus.
Other Prophets have also been called by this title in 1 Samuel 15:17, 1 Kings 1:39, 1 Samuel 16:13, Leviticus 4.
The Jews were more anxious about the last Prophet (a warrior!) and Jesus (peace be upon him) understood this. He understood who the Jews meant by the Messiah and so Jesus (peace be upon him) rejected being that man.
Angels would die
The Gospel of Barnabas states that angels would also die. The deniers of this book state that this belief contradicts the Qur’an. However, if we read the Qur’an, this is an incorrect conclusion.
The Qur’an also mentions that all the angels will die. Angel Israfil will blow the trumpet and everyone will die. God will then cause the angel of death and other angels to die as well. At that time, just like the beginning, only God would live and God would then bring the angels back to life.
Everything will die (3:185, 21:35 and 29:57). The blowing of the trumpets has been mentioned several times and is a lengthy discussion. Please read it here.
Human beings would die before the Judgment day
Again the Gospel of Barnabas states that on the thirteenth day of the final period before the end, all mankind will die and every living thing on the earth shall perish (para 53) whereas the Qur’an states that men will be alive until the last day, the great Day of Judgment, when the trumpet shall sound and “every man will have enough concerns on that day to make him heedless of others” (Surah 80.37).
The Qur’an says the same thing. It should be remembered that the word for day in the Qur’an is “Yaum” and does not refer to a 24-hour period. Barnabas’ Gospel speaks of 13 days. Perhaps he has broken down that Yaum into human days. The basic fact is the same which is that each and everyone will die and then rise again. As for the rising again, we do not know when that would happen; may be this would take place after 13 days.
Copied from Dante’s Inferno? Medieval Forgery?
The rejecters of the Gospel of Barnabas claim that there are several similarities between the Gospel of Barnabas and the work of Dante (13th/14th century) and says that such similarities cannot be coincidences. However, if we examine these so-called similarities, we see that common sense material has been spoken which is mentioned in religious scriptures and from which Dante copies from.
…and go and serve false and lying gods. Gospel of Barnabas, para 23” is a statement that can be found in the work of Dante as well. However, if we examine this sentence we see that this is nothing but simple statement that could have been spoken by anyone.
The Qur’an says that the polytheists worship false gods who lie to them and on the Day of Judgment, the worshippers of these false and lying gods would call their gods but none would come and those that exist (Jinn) would reject any association with them. Satan and his team of Jinn (fallen angels of the Bible) are referred to as liars and it is mentioned that those who are polytheists and worship idols, in fact worship these lying Jinn (false gods). The Qur’an mentions this statement but the wording is different in Arabic. Literal translations would bring forward the same statement as narrated by Barnabas.
Copying from Dante’s Inferno? Know ye therefore, that hell is one, yet hath seven centres one below another. Hence, even as sin is of seven kinds, for as seven gates of hell has Satan generated it: So are seven punishments therein.
Qur’an came much before Dante and mentions the same fact that hell has seven centres. The claim of this point is wrong and is correct the other way round. It is actually Dante who has copied from religious texts. Qur’an agrees with this fact and it is an accepted belief of the Muslims that the hypocrites and people like Pharaoh will be in the 7th or the lowest pit of hell.
The Gospel rejecters use words like medieval chivalry, feudal lords etc when mentioning some incidents in the Gospel of Barnabas. Feudal lords is a term used by the article to make it look like a medieval book. If other appropriate words are used for the same title, then there appears to be no medieval connection. A tyrant village leader is an appropriate word and such people have existed throughout time.
The deniers says that storing wine in barrels was not practiced in Palestine as they used to store it in wine skins and for this, the deniers give a verse from the Bible. The Bible itself is not the source and is a debatable book. However, the verse shall still be examined.
Matthew 9:17
King James Bible
Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved.
Douay-Rheims Bible
Neither do they put new wine into old bottles. Otherwise the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish. But new wine they put into new bottles: and both are preserved.
Tyndale New Testament
Neither do men put new wine, into old vessels: for then the vessels break, and the wine runneth out, and the vessels perish. But they pour new wine into new vessels, and so are both saved together.
Webster’s Bible Translation
Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved.
The court procedure mentioned by Barnabas has also been questioned to be medieval. However, when one examines the New Testament, similar procedures will be found there. Palestine was under Roman rule and this procedure was their practice at that time as well.
The reference to the duel between two rival lovers reminds one of the age of chivalry (99).
The passage reads as follows:
Ye know that when a youth loverth a lady, and she love not him, but another, he is moved to indignation and slayeth his rival.
This is nothing but a simple fact that has nothing to do with the medieval society. Adam’s son killed his other son for the sake of woman as mentioned by the Hadith and also the Book of Jubilees from the Dead Sea Scrolls that have been discovered recently. Such sorts of crimes have no date in history and have existed since ever.
Similarly, the passages about the believers going to hell, not to be tortured, but to see the unbelievers in their torments, recalls to mind Dante’s picture of the same.
This is a simple fact that has also been mentioned in the Qur’an. Dante was no Prophet and did not speak of the unknown, he copied from other books, and Barnabas did not copy from anywhere as he was the source. Gerhard Nehls, the Christian missionary who made this allegation, makes more weird points such as saying that heaven with no feud is copied from the work of Dante. Qur’an also says that there would be no feud in paradise and that evil would be taken out from the hearts before entrance into paradise happens. What Barnabas is doing is that he is narrating from the source (a Prophet of God) which the Qur’an also did (by God through the Prophet). Dante’s material is not the source but is a copied material.
Contradiction with bible, history, geography, science and logic?

The Centenary Year of Jubilee
The critics of the Gospel of Barnabas state that the book contradicts the centenary year of Jubilee with outside evidences. In the year A.D. 1300 Pope Boniface the VIII instituted the Jubilee as a centenary event. Owing to its financial success, however, Pope Clement VI reversed Boniface’s decision and celebrated the next Jubilee in 1350. It is claimed that it was the only time that such a practice was done. However, considering the fact that the Gospel of Barnabas came out of the libraries of the Church, it would be no surprise if the popes knew about the history of this practice.
The year of Jubilee was debatable amongst the popes as well! The Old Testament is a corrupted book and this corruption showed in the decisions of the popes. They themselves did not agree upon it! Church has books and documents that are not even known to outsiders. Their library is nothing less than treasure and it appears that they knew about these different Jubilee dates which means that they must have made these changes from some books or documents that they possessed. Was the Gospel of Barnabas one of them?
Where is the city of Nazareth?
A passage from the Gospel of Barnabas has been alleged to contain errors.
Jesus went to the Sea of Galilee, and having embarked in a ship sailed to his city of Nazareth;
Jesus (peace be upon him) going to the Sea of Galilee is not a problem at all. He went to his city is also not a problem but there is a problem if it is stated that Nazareth is right next to the sea of Galilee. However, such a thing has not been mentioned. First of all, it states that Jesus sailed to his city. This does not mean that his city was next to the sea. For example, it takes Mr. ABC a train and then a bus to go to his home and it is stated that Mr. A took a train to go to his home. Such a statement is not incorrect. Secondly, the sentence posted is a translation which is not as good as the original. What if the most accurate translation read something like this?
Jesus went to the Sea of Galilee, and having embarked in a ship sailed towards his city of Nazareth;
This translation buries any kind of issue from this verse. Thirdly, maps were not drawn at that time and the outskirts of a city were considered a part of that city. Perhaps even land outside that city was considered a part of that city.
Where is Capernaum?

we see Jesus going UP to Capernaum, whereas Capernaum is situated right on the shore of the Lake.
Up is not the direction. If a person says that he lives right down the street, does it mean that the street has a slope and he lives on the lower part? This is incorrect. The street can be straight and the person can be living towards north, east or west. Again, maps were not drawn. The first maps had the North Pole down but later the map was turned upside down. Going up a place could even be referring to the high slope of that area.
In Chapter 151 we are told that Jesus embarked on a ship (from Nazareth?) and next we read that he arrived in Jerusalem. We might well ask whether this was also done by boat?
The same explanation applies to this point. Jesus (peace be upon him) went towards Jerusalem but changed modes of transport for that. The place is not known. Perhaps it was from Jordan through the Dead Sea to Jerusalem. This route creates no issues but other routes may still be valid.
The world is beautiful in summer time in Palestine
The rejecters of the Gospel claim that summer is unbearable and is certainly not beautiful as claimed by Barnabas. However the truth is that there are considerable differences in temperature in Palestine. For example Mount Hermon, with its white snowcaps all year-round, towers 9000 feet above sea level, while the Dead Sea is 1292 feet below sea level. The snow melts in summer and waters the dry land. The land of Palestine enjoys sunny blue skies from the beginning of May to the end of September, with little or no interruption. The world is beautiful, it seems, refers to the worship and remembrance of God. Pilgrims enter the land and it seems that this is what Jesus (peace be upon him) is happy about.
Three gifts or three wise men?
In Chapter 6 another interesting common error is found. It speaks here of the three Magi or wise men coming from the East. The New Testament does not specify the number, but gives a list of three gifts that were brought by the Magi, namely gold, myrrh and frankincense. This later led to the assumption that there were three wise men from the East. But this belief certainly does not derive or date from the New Testament.

As already mentioned above that something not to be found in the New Testament does not make it false. New Testament was not the source of the Gospel of Barnabas. The recently discovered book titled “Infancy Gospel of James” also gives a figure of the Magi. Giving figures is not a surprise, irrelevant to the discussion and not of any interest to anyone.
Gospel parts not to be found in New Testament
In Chapters 91-92 we are told that Jesus and His disciples kept “the 40 days”. The context clearly shows that this refers to the period of Lent before Easter, celebrated by the church, but from a very much later period than the days of the early church. (The church meditates at this time on the suffering of Christ, which was obviously unknown when Christ was still alive). We find that Lent was celebrated only from the fourth century A.D. onwards. Jesus and His disciples are said to have gone for the 40 day fast to Mount Sinai. which is some 450 km away. There is no report in the New Testament to confirm this.
Something being not mentioned in the New Testament does not make it a forgery. The News Testament contains some stories that have nothing to do with God, for example, Paul punching Peter, Paul fighting with Barnabas etc. The New Testament does not have anything on the childhood of Jesus (peace be upon him) and much more. Just because those 40 days are not mentioned in the New Testament does not make the Gospel of Barnabas a forgery. The reason for the omission should be asked to Constantine and his writers.
How many Roman soldiers?
We are further informed that a certain dispute would have ended in war, but the Romans assembled three armies each numbering 200,000 men at Mizpeh (Chapter 91). The entire Roman army at that time numbered only 300,000, however. (Encyclopædia Britannica).
If we read the chapter carefully, we see that these three armies were not registered soldiers but an angry mob. Families had turned against each other and it were the common folk who equaled to such a large number. Secondly, counting such a large number is quite impossible and this figure is either an estimate or an exaggeration by Barnabas.
Governor of Palestine
According to the G.o.B. Jesus was born when Pilate was governor, but in fact he only became governor between A.D. 26 and 27.
This is an inaccurate statement. According to the Encyclopedia “Pilate’s biographical details before and after his appointment to Judaea are unknown, but have been supplied by tradition…” The year of his governorship are also not facts. However, that is not debated here. The thing mentioned by Barnabas was that Pilate was referred to as the governor. This shall be explained with an example:
A man became the President in the year 2000 and a book is written about him in 2010 when he is not the President any more. The book refers to him as “President” when it speaks of his early life and when it speaks of his life after presidency. The title “President” stays with the man no matter what he does. This does not mean that the man is still a President or was a President when the book speaks of the period before 2000.
Another example can be used to further make it clear: When Mr. A was born in 1980, his mother saw President Bush in a hotel. Obviously George Bush was not the President back then but the sentence makes complete sense and no one would dismiss it as being incorrect. The title remains with the person throughout his/her life.
Jesus prayed five times a day like Muslims
An incorrect point once again. The Gospel of Barnabas states that it was the order of Jesus (peace be upon him) to the disciples to sleep only two hours a day and dedicate that time to prayer and worship. Prayers take up no more than five minutes and with such a low amount of sleep and excessive amount of time dedicated to prayer, one can easily conclude that Jesus (peace be upon him) used to pray about 20 times a day or more. He is shown to pray a lot and this amount of 20 is just an estimate, maybe he prayed much more than that!
Title of ‘virgin’ crowned to Mary
Not before the Fourth Century A.D. was the title “Virgin” given to Mary, yet it appears in the G.o.B.
In the 4th century, the Gospels were compiled but they were written much before that. This term had been in existence since lady Mary’s time. Recently discovered books of the Dead Sea Scrolls confirm this fact.
Mount of Transfiguration; Mount Tabor?
Origen A.D. 184-254 was the first scholar to assume that Mount Tabor was the Mount of Transfiguration. The Bible does not confirm this. The Christian tradition that it was Mount Moriah begins only in the Third Century, and yet the G.o.B. contains this information.
Gospel if Barnabas was a much older book that had been banned in the 5th century. The date of its writing is not known with certainty but from the remaining clues left by the Christians, it is very clear that it did exist before the coming of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). Origen founded an opinion but it was not the first one of its kind, Barnabas had the same opinion long before him. When the pope was caught red-handed with this Gospel, he blamed it on the Muslims and Christians have made extreme efforts to destroy all clues and declare it fake but there goes a saying, “There is no such thing as a perfect crime”. This crime is no different and the remaining clues indicate that the Gospel of Barnabas was written by none other than Barnabas himself. For each similarity, we must know and have our mind set to the idea that copying was the other way round, Barnabas was the source.
Four archangels
The G.o.B. mentions four archangels, which is also a tradition of the church that dated from the early Medieval period.
That is not completely accurate. Islam and Christianity both agree on this. The four archangels are Gabriel, Michael, Israfil (the one who will blow the trumpet) and Israel (the angel that takes away the life).
Concept of ‘The Book’ copied from the Qur’an?

The Islamic concept of “the Book” is found in Chapter 10, where we read that the angel Gabriel presented to Jesus as it were a shining mirror, a book, which descended into the heart of Jesus. This corresponds very well with Suras 5:49 and 2:97
This is similar to the Islamic belief but this is also similar to the New Testament.
Qur’an 3:3
It is He Who sent down to thee (step by step), in truth, the Book, confirming what went before it; and He sent down the Law (of Moses) and the Gospel (of Jesus) before this, as a guide to mankind, and He sent down the criterion (of judgment between right and wrong).
In Mark 8:35 Jesus said: “…but whosoever shall lose his life for my sake and the gospel’s, the same shall save it.”
How could Jesus have said this when there was no gospel when he lived? The present day gospels were not written until after his departure from earth. Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him) did receive a Gospel from God which the Qur’an, the Gospel of Barnabas and the present day Christian Gospels all agree with.
One of the most ill knowledge claims by any Christian missionary; Gerhard Nehls in this case. He states:
In Chapter 54, the Italian text mentions a denarius, which is made up of 60 minuti. These gold coins were used only in Spain under Khalif Abdul Malik (in 685 A.D.).
What can be said about claim that shows only ill knowledge?
Gerhard Nehls has been refuted by simple historical facts here!
The Last Prophet; Ishmaelite or Israelite
The Gospel of Barnabas states “the true book of Moses … (it) is written that Ishmael is the father of Messiah, and Isaac the father of the messenger of the Messiah” (Chapter 191). This is not a contradiction with the Bible at all. The word mentioned here is “true” for the book of Moses. Who has it? Furthermore, the Old Testament also confirms this but deniers will never agree.
A question by Gerhard Nehls
In Chapter 222, the last chapter of the G.o.B., we read: “After Jesus had departed (after having been raised from his hiding place through the window of the house in the Garden of Gethsemane) the disciples scattered through the different parts of Israel and of the world, and the truth, hated of Satan, was persecuted, as it always is, by falsehood. For certain evil men, pretending to be disciples, preached that Jesus died and rose not again. Others preached that he really died, but rose again. Others preached and yet preach that Jesus is the Son of God, among whom is Paul deceived.”
The G.o.B. herewith endeavors to correct preceding Gospels and Paul. We wish to ask the question when and how was the writer aware that the disciples had scattered throughout the different parts of the world? This question is left open, but easily answered by us, for we believe that it is yet another anachronism.
Gerhard Nehls has asked a question which will be answered but if the readers read his question, they will find that there is no problem at all. How did Barnabas know that the disciples had scattered throughout Israel and other parts of the world? The answer is simple. Barnabas was also a disciple. The disciples were friends to each other and they wouldn’t leave each other forever without telling. The place where the Gospel of Barnabas was written is not known. Perhaps, Barnabas wrote it while traveling or from some other part of Israel. The question does not make sense and an issue is attempted to be created out of “no-issue” at all.
In Chapter 80 of the G.o.B. we find a story about Daniel, which has it that he was taken captive by Nebuchadnezzar while he was yet two years old. This statement, it will be observed, is incompatible with what may be inferred from the Bible narrative. According to the latter, it was in the second year of his reign that Nebuchadnezzar had his famous dream, which Daniel interpreted.
“Then the King gave Daniel high honors and many great gifts, and made him ruler over the whole province of Babylon, and chief prefect over the all-wise men of Babylon.” (Daniel 2:48).
Now if we suppose that Nebuchadnezzar captured Daniel in the first year of his reign (the earliest possible date, which could be assigned to Daniel’s captivity) and that, according to “Barnabas”, Daniel was then two years old, it would follow then that in the second year of Nebuchadnezzar’s reign, Daniel was only three years old (Gairdner, page 26). Daniel was in fact born in 621 B.C. and the captivity began in 605 B.C., so he was 16 years old when taken prisoner.
This point by Gerhard Nehls brings this interesting article to mind.
This article, although does not speak about this point by Gerhard Nehls, answers all such questions. The message behind the article should be understood and applied to this point. If this is done so, one will not find any problem with the Gospel of Barnabas and a comparison of the Gospel of Barnabas with the Bible would be accepted as something very foolish. A book with unknown authors (Bible) and a book written by the disciple of Jesus (peace be upon him) should not be compared at all.
Origin of Pharisees
In Chapter 145 of the G.o.B. Pharisees date back as far as the time of Elijah and there were supposed to have been 17,000. In fact, history first knows about Pharisees seven centuries later, in the period between 135-104 B.C.
According to the Catholic Encyclopedia, Pharisees came together as a group in 3rd century BC. Before that, they were scattered.
Ishmael or Isaac to be sacrificed?
We read that Ishmael was offered on the altar by Abraham (Chapter 44). This is clearly an Islamic concept.
This is not only an Islamic concept but the true concept which the corrupt Bible also supports.
In Genesis 16:16 Abraham is 86 years old when Hagar has Ishmael. In Genesis 17:24 Abraham is 99 and this makes Ishmael to be 13. When Isaac was born, Abraham was 100 years old as mentioned in Genesis 21:5.
Hebrews 11:17
“By faith Abraham, when he was tried, offered up Isaac: and he that had received the promises offered up his only begotten son,”
How can this be? How can Isaac be the only begotten son of Abraham when Ishmael was 14 years older than him? Clearly there is evidence of forgery in the Old Testament and the lying scribes mentioned in Jeremiah 8:8 switched the names.
Genesis 16:3 states that Hagar was a legitimate wife of Abraham which is not what the Christians and Jews believe!
No racism in the Gospel of Barnabas
God is said to be the God of Abraham, ISHMAEL and Isaac in Chapter 212. It should read, according to the O.T. the God of Abraham Isaac and Jacob.
The Gospel of Barnabas is not an anti-Gentile book like the Old Testament. Barnabas says that God loves whoever obeys Him whether he be an Israelite or a Gentile. Prophet Ishmael (peace be upon him) has been depicted as an evil man by the Old Testament. Considering the biased attitude of the Old Testament, it needs no research to understand that the same attitude has been adopted for Prophet Ishmael (peace be upon him).
Even Torah was rejected by Jews like Christians reject Gospel of Barnabas
We find it highly suspicious and wrong to read that the Torah was written by an Ismaelite (Chapter 192).
This is a false claim made once again by Gerhard Nehls. In fact the story in the Gospel of Barnabas’ 192nd chapter is similar to what Christians of today say. Christians say that this Gospel is written by a Muslim as it resembles Islamic beliefs. Similarly, the high priest had refused to give the book (Torah that he had) to read and for this he gave the excuse that it was written by an Arab as it prophesied that the last Prophet would be an Arab. Even the high priest had a book that resembled the Islamic beliefs and he gave the same excuse that the Christians of today use.
The name of Prophet Muhammad (may blessings of Almighty be upon him)
Most suspicious of course, is any mentioning of the name of Mohammed. (In Chapters 44, 54, 112, 97 and 163, etc.) It is particularly suspicious, since all the other evidence points to the fact that the whole of the G.o.B is a Medieval forgery. But other Islamic thought is also reflected in the G.o.B.
This is a strange statement; Gerhard Nehls should read his own Bible carefully and see that irrefutable evidences can be fund in his own book as well:
Even the name of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) has been mentioned several times in the corrupt and altered book.
In Chapter 39 Adam sees bright writing and the content is none other than the Kalimah. There is only one God” and “Mohammed is the Messenger of God.”
The Kalama is a fundamental belief and since Muhammad (peace be upon him) has been prophesied by name, the Kalama being mentioned is of no surprise.
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 La Revue de Téhéran | Iran
N° 38, janvier 2009

La figure du Christ dans l’Islam

Amélie Neuve-Eglise

Si mon ami plein de douceur me fait asseoir dans la poussière,
Pourquoi s’affligerait un pauvre hère qui possède un puissant Ami ?
Le chagrin qu’il me cause est dans mon cœur comme un trésor,
Mon cœur est "Lumière sur lumière",
Pareil à la belle Maryam qui porte en son sein Jésus.
Mon ami est le soleil, il ne se promène que seul ;
C’est la lune qui est à la tête de l’armée des étoiles

 (Jalâl-ud-Dîn Rûmî, Dîwân-e Shams-e Tabrîzî, Ode 565)
مرا یار شکرناکم دگر بنشاند بر خاکم

چرا غم دارد آن مفلس که یار محتشم دارد؟

غمش در دل چو گنجوری

دلم نور علی نوری

مثال مریم زیبا که عیسی در شکم دارد

چو خورشید است یار من، نمی گردد به جز تنها

سپهسالار مه باشد کز استاره حشم دارد
(جلال الدین رومی، دیوان شمس تبریزی، غزل 565)
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Jésus et Marie représentés dans une ancienne miniature persane, date et auteur inconnus.
Prophète central de l’islam, Jésus - appelé "’Îsâ" dans le Coran - fait partie, avec les prophètes Noé, Abraham, Moïse et Mohammad, des "élus" à qui a été révélé un Livre ou une Loi divine. [1] Dans l’islam, Jésus a donc été choisi par Dieu pour transmettre aux hommes un nouveau texte sacré, l’Evangile (Injîl), censé contenir le sens profond et vrai de la Thora, ainsi que pour rappeler aux "Enfants d’Israël" (Banî Isrâ’îl) le dogme central du monothéisme et la nécessité de se soumettre à la volonté divine.
Jésus est évoqué dans le Coran comme indissolublement lié à Marie et constitue un modèle à suivre pour l’ensemble des croyants : "Ô Marie ! Dieu t’annonce la bonne nouvelle d’un verbe émanant de Lui. Son nom est : le Messie, Jésus, fils de Marie (Al-Masîh, ’Îsâ ibn Maryam) ; illustre en ce monde comme dans l’au-delà ; il est au nombre de ceux qui sont proches de Dieu." [2] Il fait partie de la "famille de ’Imrân" comprenant sa mère Marie, Yahyâ (Jean-Baptiste), son cousin, ainsi que le père de ce denier, Zacharie. Jésus est également considéré pur de tout péché.
Le ’Îsâ de l’islam est cependant très différent du Jésus du christianisme : bien que favorisé de grands dons et "fortifié par l’Esprit Saint", la vision coranique le considère essentiellement comme un homme et lui dénie donc la part de divinité qui constitue le fondement de la religion chrétienne. Ainsi, dans une optique comparée, la vision et conception profondément différente du monothéisme ainsi que de la relation entre Dieu et les hommes dans ces deux religions apparaît avec toute sa force au travers de leur différente vision du personnage de Jésus. Cependant, dans les deux traditions, il n’en demeure pas moins le prophète qui bouleverse les lois, tant par sa naissance et sa mort que par la profondeur de son message, et qui a constitué une source inépuisable de méditation pour de nombreuses grandes figures de l’islam au cours des siècles.

Le contexte de l’époque

Nous ne savons pas avec précision dans quelle mesure le prophète Mohammad lui-même connaissait le personnage de Jésus et les différents aspects de la doctrine chrétienne de l’époque, qui, à la fin du VIe siècle, était loin d’être unifiée. La révélation coranique s’est ainsi déroulée dans un contexte où foisonnaient une multitude de communautés chrétiennes - nestoriens, priscilliens, monophystes… - ayant notamment des conceptions différentes de la nature de la personne du Christ lui-même.
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Rencontre du jeune Mohammad avec le moine chrétien Bahîra, illustration de Jamî’ al-Tawârikh, XIVe siècle.
Selon certains éléments de la tradition islamique, le prophète Mohammad se serait trouvé au contact de plusieurs chrétiens tels que le moine nestorien Bahîra - qui, alors que Mohammad n’était encore qu’enfant, le reconnaît comme un futur prophète [3] -, Waraqa ibn Nawfal, chrétien parent de sa femme Khadîja qui lui apportera la confirmation de sa mission prophétique, ou encore Salmân de Perse, qui se convertira à l’islam et fut l’un de ses plus proches compagnons.
A l’époque de la Révélation, l’Arabie entretenait également des relations avec les chrétiens monophysites du Najrân au Yémen [4], les Lakhmides nestoriens de Hira, et certaines communautés chrétiennes de Syrie. En outre, au temps des persécutions des compagnons de Mohammad à la Mecque, ce dernier les invita à se réfugier en Abyssinie, auprès du roi chrétien Négus qui, touché par le respect et la haute estime accordés à Jésus et Marie dans le Coran, décida de leur accorder protection et soutien.

La figure du Christ dans le Coran

Tantôt qualifié de Parole de Vérité (Qawl al-Haqq), d’Esprit de Dieu (Rûh Allah), de serviteur de Dieu (’Abdollah) ou encore de "signe pour l’Heure" (’ilm lilsa’ât) et de "Masîh" (signifiant le "oint") [5], le Coran présente également Jésus comme le "Verbe" (Kalima) de Dieu - dont la signification est cependant bien différente de la notion de "Verbe" de l’Evangile de Saint Jean selon lequel Dieu s’est fait chair. Pour l’islam, le Verbe reste une créature, même s’il n’en demeure pas moins doté d’un rang éminent en ce qu’il est chargé de véhiculer la Parole de Dieu et parler en son nom : "Jésus devient le Verbe de Dieu non pas à cause de son incarnation par laquelle sa chair devient divine, mais parce que son esprit est parvenu à un tel degré de perfectionnement qu’il est devenu un miroir au travers duquel la divinité se révèle". [6]
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Jésus-’Îsâ faisant descendre une "table servie" (mâ’ida) du ciel pour ses disciples, miniature persane, date et auteur inconnus.
La dimension exceptionnelle de la naissance virginale de Jésus est soulignée par le fait que Jésus a été conçu par le souffle de l’Esprit divin (Rûh) [7] insufflé en Marie. Le mystère de sa conception a parfois été comparé à celle d’Adam, créés tous deux par la Parole divine existentiatrice "Soit" (Kun !) [8], avec cependant pour différence essentielle qu’Adam n’eut pas de mère. Le miracle de la naissance de Jésus est renforcé par le caractère extraordinaire du nouveau-né qui parle dès sa naissance [9] et répond aux accusations lancées contre sa mère : "Je suis vraiment le serviteur de Dieu. Il m’a donné le Livre et m’a désigné Prophète. Où que je sois, Il m’a rendu béni ; et Il m’a recommandé, tant que je vivrai, la prière et la Zakat ; et la bonté envers ma mère. Il ne m’a fait ni violent ni malheureux." [10]
Comme le prophète Mohammad après lui, Jésus-Isâ ne vient pas apporter un nouveau message, mais davantage confirmer les révélations précédentes et inviter les hommes au monothéisme pur, dans la continuation de Noé, d’Abraham et de Moïse. Il confirme ainsi le message de la Torah, tout en modifiant certaines de ses prescriptions légales. En outre, le Coran évoque que Jésus fut aidé par l’Esprit Saint (Rûh al-Qudus) [11] ainsi que par un groupe de "disciples" (hawâriyûn). C’est également à la demande de ces derniers que Jésus demande à Dieu de faire descendre du ciel une "table servie" (mâ’ida) [12] - qui rappelle aux commentateurs tantôt l’épisode de la Cène, tantôt celui de la multiplication des pains - comme ultime preuve de la véracité de sa prophétie. Ainsi, si le contenu de cette dernière fut rejeté par une grande partie des Juifs (Banî Isrâ’îl), seuls les apôtres (hawâriûn) ont réellement "crû" à l’issu de l’envoi de ce signe du ciel. Dieu a également donné à Jésus la capacité de réaliser des miracles "par sa permission", notamment de guérir les malades ou de donner vie à des formes inertes : "Tu fabriquais de l’argile comme une forme d’oiseau par Ma permission ; puis tu soufflais dedans. Alors par Ma permission, elle devenait oiseau. Et tu guérissais par Ma permission, l’aveugle-né et le lépreux. Et par Ma permission, tu faisais revivre les morts." [13]
Concernant la conception même de la personne du Christ, toute idée d’incarnation ou de divinité est fermement rejetée. Nous touchons ici au cœur même de l’islam qui insiste avant tout sur l’idée d’unicité (tawhîd), d’unité et de transcendance divine absolue, proscrivant ainsi formellement toute idée d’association (shirk) entre Dieu et ses créatures. [14] Malgré son statut d’élu et de messager, le Christ reste donc avant tout un homme, dont l’existence est sans commune mesure avec l’essence divine. Cette différence essentielle est clairement exprimée dans le Coran qui rapporte les paroles du Christ à son Créateur : "Tu sais ce qu’il y a en moi, et je ne sais pas ce qu’il y a en Toi. Tu es, en vérité, le grand connaisseur de tout ce qui est inconnu." [15] Isâ se présente également comme un serviteur de Dieu (’abd) et se défend d’être à l’origine de tout associationnisme : "Je ne leur ai dit que ce que Tu m’avais commandé, (à savoir) : "Adorez Dieu, mon Seigneur et votre Seigneur"". [16] La figure de Jésus-Isâ telle qu’elle est présentée dans le Coran souligne la centralité de la transcendance du divin en islam, qui ne peut en aucun cas s’incarner dans l’histoire et être appréhendé en soi au travers des notions de matérialité ou de corporéité.

L’Evangile (Injîl) comme "guide et lumière"

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Marie venant de donner naissance à Jésus près du palmier, miniature persane, date et auteur inconnus.
Comme nous l’avons évoqué, il fut révélé à Jésus un Evangile (Injîl) [17] qualifié par le Coran de "guide et lumière" [18] et censé contenir le sens vrai de la Thora. Cependant, le texte original fut ensuite perdu et son application dévoyée : "Nous […] lui avons apporté l’Evangile, et mis dans les cœurs de ceux qui le suivirent douceur et mansuétude. Le monachisme qu’ils inventèrent, Nous ne le leur avons nullement prescrit. [Ils devaient] seulement rechercher l’agrément de Dieu." [19] Le sens et le contenu du mot "évangile" font donc référence à deux réalités fondamentalement différentes dans la chrétienté et en islam : recueil de témoignages écrits plusieurs décennies après la mort du Christ pour le christianisme, l’Injîl lui fut au contraire directement révélé par Dieu de son vivant selon l’islam.
Il faut néanmoins relever certaines similitudes, comme ce verset du Coran indiquant que l’Injîl présente les vrais croyants comme "une semence qui sort sa pousse, puis se raffermit, s’épaissit, et ensuite se dresse sur sa tige, à l’émerveillement des semeurs" [20] ; faisant ainsi écho à certains passages de l’Evangile selon Saint Matthieu : "Celui qui a reçu la semence dans la bonne terre, c’est celui qui entend la parole et la comprend ; il porte le fruit, et un grain en donne cent, un autre soixante, un autre trente" [21] ; "la bonne semence, ce sont les fils du royaume ; l’ivraie, ce sont les fils du malin". [22]

L’annonceur du "Paraclet"

Le Christ est également considéré par l’islam comme l’annonciateur de la venue du prophète Mohammad. [23] Cette vision s’appuie notamment sur une lecture particulière des paroles du Christ rapportées dans l’Evangile selon Saint Jean, annonçant la venue d’un "Paraclet" : "J’ai encore beaucoup de choses à vous dire, mais vous ne pouvez pas les porter maintenant. Quand le consolateur sera venu, l’Esprit de vérité, il vous conduira dans toute la vérité (Jean, 16:12-13).
L’authenticité de la traduction chrétienne courante évoquant un "consolateur" (du grec parakletos) est contestée par les musulmans qui considèrent que le mot grec original était periklytos, signifiant "glorieux", "plus loué" ou encore "Ahmad" en arabe, provenant lui-même de la racine "h-m-d", évoquant l’idée de louange et de glorification, et à partir duquel est formé le nom de "Mohammad". Cette interprétation est selon eux confirmée par la seconde partie de la parole du Christ qui poursuit : "car il ne parlera pas de lui-même, mais il dira tout ce qu’il aura entendu, et il vous annoncera les choses à venir" (Jean, 16:13) ; ce qui s’accorde totalement avec la révélation coranique qui fut "dictée" à Mohammad par l’intermédiaire de l’Ange Gabriel et comporte une dimension eschatologique essentielle. La continuité des prophéties christique et mohammadienne, expressément affirmée dans le Coran, est, selon les musulmans, également énoncée par le Christ à la suite des paroles que nous venons de rapporter : "Il me glorifiera, parce qu’il prendra de ce qui est à moi, et vous l’annoncera", (Jean, 16:15).


Selon l’islam, le Christ ne serait pas mort sur la croix : un sosie lui aurait été substitué peu avant la crucifixion, tandis que, comme les prophètes Hénoch et Elie, il serait monté au ciel vivant : "Ils ne l’ont ni tué ni crucifié ; mais ce n’était qu’un faux semblant. […] Dieu l’a élevé vers Lui." [24] Le Christ a cependant un rôle eschatologique essentiel en ce qu’il doit revenir à la fin des temps au côté du "mahdî" pour rétablir le règne de la justice et vaincre l’Antéchrist. [25] Cependant, à la différence du christianisme, l’islam ne considère pas le Christ comme un sauveur, étant donné qu’il ne reconnaît pas la notion d’Alliance ni de péché originel et que la rédemption ne s’obtient qu’au travers des efforts de chaque croyant pour suivre les préceptes révélés dans le Coran. L’essentiel des dogmes chrétiens (divinité du Christ, incarnation, Trinité, crucifixion, rémission des péchés) est donc rejeté. [26] Malgré ces différences, ces deux traditions n’en partagent pas moins un horizon commun, caractérisé par une même attente eschatologique du retour de Jésus-Christ à la fin des temps.

La question de l’étymologie : le "Jésus" des chrétiens est-il le "’Îsâ " des musulmans ?

Dans le Coran, Jésus apparaît soit sous le nom de " ’Îsâ ", soit celui de "Masîh" ; or, le Jésus des chrétiens arabes se nomme Yasû’, lui-même issu de l’hébreu Yéshû’, diminutif de Yéhôshûa (Josué) signifiant "Dieu sauve". Yasû’ viendrait donc de la racine Yâsha’, "sauver", distincte de la racine de ’Îsâ, dont l’origine et la signification demeurent incertaines. [27] Certains ont évoqué une simple déformation du nom par déplacement du ’ayn final au début du mot (métathèse) et modification de voyelle longue "û" en "â", mais qui n’en fait pas moins référence à une même personne ; cependant, l’ampleur de la transformation rend cette hypothèse douteuse. [28] François Jourdan penche pour la version selon laquelle ’Îsâ proviendrait de ’Ysaû, nom sémitique d’Esaü, alors utilisé par les Juifs pour désigner les chrétiens. Sans rentrer dans l’ensemble des analyses linguistiques et historiques venant étayer telle ou telle affirmation, ces hypothèses n’en révèlent pas moins la difficulté à assimiler de fait le "Yasû’ " du Nouveau Testament au "’Îsâ " du Coran, bien que le fait qu’il y soit désigné comme "fils de Marie" nous autorise à penser qu’il s’agit bel et bien d’un même personnage.

Jésus dans la tradition musulmane

Les nombreux récits de la tradition musulmane consacrés à Jésus insistent notamment sur sa pureté, comme ce célèbre hadîth de Bukhârî : "Lorsque chaque être humain naît, Satan touche de ses deux doigts les deux côtés de son corps, sauf Jésus, fils de Marie, que Satan n’a pas réussi à toucher, n’effleurant que le placenta." [29] De même, selon un hadîth attribué au prophète Mohammad, ce dernier aurait affirmé que "De tous les prophètes, le plus proche de moi est Jésus, fils de Marie. Il y a entre lui et moi aucun autre prophète". Le message du Christ apparaît donc comme étroitement lié à la révélation mohammadienne qui ne viendrait que l’approfondir et en restaurer le sens vrai ; Jésus et Mohammad n’étant cependant que les deux pôles d’une vérité unique. De façon générale, les chrétiens sont également considérés comme les croyants les plus proches des musulmans : "Tu trouveras certes que les plus disposés à aimer les croyants [musulmans] sont ceux qui disent "Nous sommes chrétiens". [30]
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Sermon sur la montagne du Christ, miniature persane, date et auteur inconnus.
Jésus est également "présent" dans plusieurs événements de la vie du Prophète : comme le relate Martin Lings dans sa biographie consacrée au prophète Mohammad, lors de son voyage nocturne (isrâ’) suivi de son ascension céleste (mi’raj), accompagné de sa monture Burâq et de l’Archange Gabriel, "ils filèrent en direction du nord, dépassèrent Yathrib et Khaybar et parvinrent enfin à Jérusalem. Là, un groupe de prophètes - Abraham, Moïse, Jésus et d’autres - se porta à leur rencontre…" [31] Cet événement n’est bien sûr pas à situer dans le temps "historique" qui est le nôtre, mais dans le monde imaginal, lieu des évènements mystiques au-delà de toute temporalité terrestre, où, dégagées de la linéarité du temps matériel, toutes les rencontres deviennent possibles…

Jésus selon la gnose chiite

Dans la gnose chiite, Jésus est avant tout considéré comme une épiphanie (mazhar) de l’un des aspects de la gloire divine apparaissant dans le monde sensible sans s’y incarner, telle une image se reflétant dans un miroir sans pour autant se confondre avec lui.
L’importance de la figure du Christ est également soulignée par plusieurs Imâms dont l’Imâm Sâdiq qui aurait déclaré : "Sache que si quelqu’un renie Jésus le fils de Marie, et reconnaît tous les prophètes sauf lui, il n’est pas au nombre des croyants" [32] ; tandis que l’Imâm Bâqir va même jusqu’à s’identifier avec le Christ, en s’inspirant des versets du Coran lui étant consacrés : "Je suis le Christ qui guérit les aveugles et les lépreux, qui donne vie aux oiseaux d’argile et qui dissipe les nuées. Je suis lui et il est moi". [33] Enfin, le septième Imâm, Mûsâ Kâzim, choisit de faire figurer une partie du texte des béatitudes de l’Evangile dans son testament spirituel.
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L’ascension au ciel de Jésus, miniature turque ancienne.
En outre, Narkès, la mère de l’Imâm du Temps, le douzième imâm chiite, était une princesse grecque chrétienne et descendante de l’un des apôtres du Christ, Simon-Pierre [34]. Un jour, cette dernière voit en songe le Prophète Mohammad demander au Christ sa "fille" pour son propre fils, l’Imâm du temps : "Christ, ayant regardé longuement Simon-Pierre, lui dit : "Honneur insigne et noblesse sont venus à toi. Noue donc ce lien entre ta propre famille et la famille de Mohammad". [35] Les deux prophètes ainsi que les douze apôtres et les douze imâms du chiisme duodécimain seront par la suite témoins de cette union, qui scelle également dans la conscience chiite un lien et une proximité unique entre Jésus et l’Imâm du Temps.
De façon générale et comme l’a souligné Henry Corbin dans son œuvre, l’imâmologie chiite est proche d’une certaine christologie des origines, celle des premiers siècles ayant suivi la mort du Christ ayant essentiellement développé une conception théophanique du Christ ou "Christos Angelos", présenté comme le reflet de l’un des attributs divin mais non son incarnation ; idée qui fut par la suite totalement évincée par la christologie paulinienne ayant fait prévaloir le dogme de l’incarnation. [36] Or, cette conception se rapproche de la vision chiite des Imâms conçus comme étant l’épiphanie de la "Forme" de Dieu au travers de laquelle il manifeste ses Attributs sans s’y incarner.

Jésus dans la mystique musulmane

Jésus est une figure quasi-omniprésente de la littérature mystique musulmane où il incarne souvent l’invitation adressée à chaque homme à partir à la recherche de la part de divin cachée en lui. Etroitement liée à la figure de Maryam, le Christ typifie essentiellement la naissance spirituelle destinée à s’accomplir au sein de chaque être ; le corps devant auparavant être "purifié" de toute mauvaise pensée ou acte pour pouvoir donner naissance au "Jésus de son être". [37]
Dans ce sillage, au cours d’une réflexion sur la douleur, Mowlânâ Jalâl-od-Dîn Rûmî compare notre corps à celui de Marie, que les douleurs de l’enfantement incitèrent à se réfugier vers un palmier desséché qui porta alors ses fruits : "Le corps est pareil à Marie, et chacun possède en lui un Jésus. Si nous éprouvons en nous cette douleur, notre Jésus naîtra" [38] pour enfin conclure : "Cherche un remède tant que ton Jésus est sur la terre : une fois ton Jésus parti vers le ciel, ton remède aura disparu". La figure du Christ, symbolisant ici l’âme et la dimension spirituelle de chaque homme, souligne la nécessité de l’action dans cette vie, étant donné que l’occasion de nous perfectionner au travers nos actes ne nous sera plus donnée dans l’au-delà. Nous retrouvons la même thématique dans nombre de ses poèmes : "Si tu es à la recherche de l’âne, dans cette étable du monde, Va chercher ton âne, mais Jésus ne doit pas être cherché là. Jésus est séparé de l’âne par la lumière du cœur. [...] N’entre pas en lice avec un âne ; celui qui est monté sur l’âne." [39] ; "Le chagrin qu’il [40] me cause est dans mon cœur comme un trésor, mon cœur est "lumière sur lumière" [41], pareil à la belle Maryam qui porte en son sein Jésus." [42] Jésus est encore ici indissolublement lié à Marie, symbolisant la pureté du corps nécessaire à la naissance de l’enfant de l’âme (tefl-e jân). Le Christ incarne également la lutte et le nécessaire détachement de toute âme à la recherche de son vrai principe. [43]
Dans l’anthropologie mystique de ’Alâoddawleh Semnânî (XIVe siècle) selon laquelle l’homme possède sept organes subtils (latâ’if) correspondant à une couleur et à un prophète particulier, le "Jésus de ton être" correspond au "mystère" (khafî) de la naissance spirituelle destinée à s’accomplir dans chaque être, annonçant ainsi la venue du "Vrai Moi", ou le "Mohammad de ton être". Dans cette intériorisation de la figure christique, l’ "enlèvement au monde" de ce dernier symbolisera dès lors le retour du mystique à son Principe et son occultation au monde.
Le motif de la Croix de Lumière a également été largement évoqué par la gnose ismaélienne qui présente une vision selon laquelle la vraie croix et le vrai Christ ne sont pas à rechercher dans ce monde mais dans les profondeurs même de la conscience du gnostique.
Jésus occupe également une place centrale dans l’œuvre d’Ibn ’Arabî qui le considère comme "le sceau de la sainteté (walâyat)" [44], face à Mohammad qui est le "sceau des prophètes". L’étroite dépendance de Jésus à Marie - qui incarne la Sophia éternelle - est également largement évoquée dans son œuvre. De façon générale, le couple Jésus-Maryam a souvent été mis en parallèle avec celui de Adam et Eve, avec qui il entretient une relation d’opposition : si le Féminin a originellement été existentialisé par le Masculin sans besoin d’une mère, la naissance miraculeuse du Christ marque l’apparition du Masculin existencié par le Féminin sans recours à un père. Le féminin se voit alors conférer une dimension créatrice essentielle, qui sera à la source de tout un ensemble de réflexions gnostiques sur la notion de "Sophia" divine ou de "Féminin-créateur".
Malgré les différences profondes existant entre le Christ des chrétiens et le ’Îsâ des musulmans révélant deux différentes façons de concevoir la spiritualité et le rapport au divin, nous pouvons cependant constater certaines similitudes essentielles concernant le contenu même du message du Christ et de l’islam : le Jésus du Nouveau Testament vient prêcher l’avènement proche du royaume de Dieu, rejoignant ainsi l’une des thématiques centrales du Coran. Le message du Christ est essentiellement centré non sur la fondation d’une nouvelle religion, mais sur l’accomplissement de la Loi de Moïse, faisant écho à la nécessité d’un retour au monothéisme pur d’Abraham dans le Coran qui se définit essentiellement comme un "rappel". Enfin, l’appel coranique à une soumission à Dieu ainsi que la nécessité de renoncer à tout bien matériel et même à ses attaches familiales n’est pas sans rappeler certains passages centraux de l’Evangile : ainsi, le verset "Les hommes sont irrésistiblement attirés, dans leurs passions trompeuses, par les femmes, les enfants, les amoncellements d’or et d’argent, les chevaux de race, les troupeaux et les champs. C’est là une jouissance éphémère de la vie d’ici-bas , mais c’est auprès de Dieu que se trouve le meilleur séjour." [45] fait écho à ce passage de l’Evangile de Saint Matthieu : "Et quiconque aura quitté, à cause de mon nom, ses frères, ou ses sœurs, ou son père, ou sa mère, ou sa femme, ou ses enfants, ou ses terres, ou ses maisons, recevra le centuple, et héritera la vie éternelle." [46]
Cependant, contrairement au christianisme où l’éradication des mouvements gnostiques des premiers siècles après Jésus-Christ et les différents Conciles ont donné lieu à l’émergence d’une définition "officielle" de la nature du Christ, l’absence d’un magistère dogmatique unique en islam a favorisé un véritable foisonnement de la conscience gnostique ainsi que la multiplication des réflexions sur les différentes dimensions théophaniques et mystiques du Christ. Jésus s’affirme donc en islam comme un prophète qui sauve non au travers de sa crucifixion, mais en incarnant lui-même la parole de Dieu, et en invitant chacun à la suivre : "Il faut achever la marche d’Abraham ; c’est cela entendre les verset qorâniques "par le Jésus de ton être", et c’est te mettre en mesure, toute vaine gloire bannie de ta pensée quand s’épiphanise la Lumière sacrosainte, de répondre toi aussi par les mots mêmes que Jésus prononce dans le Qorân : "Tu sais ce qu’il y a au fond de moi-même, mais je ne sais pas ce qu’il y a en Toi. Car c’est Toi qui connais les mystères"". [47]

- Anawati, Georges C.,"’Îsâ", Encyclopaedia of Islam Online, Brill Academic Publishers.
- Brague, Rémi, Du Dieu des chrétiens et d’un ou deux autres, Flammarion, 2008.
- Corbin, Henry, En islam iranien, aspects spirituels et philosophiques, T. 1, 3 et 4, Gallimard, 1971.
- Corbin, Henry, L’Imagination créatrice dans le soufisme d’Ibn ’Arabî, Entrelacs, 2006.
- Gloton, Maurice, Une approche du Coran par la grammaire et la langue, Albouraq, 2002.
- Ibn ’Arabî, Le livre des chatons de la sagesse (Fosûs al-Hikam), traduction en français de Charles-André Gilis, Albouraq, 1999.
- Jourdan, François, Dieu des chrétiens, Dieu des musulmans, des repères pour comprendre, Editions de l’Œuvre, 2007.
- Khalidi, Tarif, The muslim Jesus : sayings and stories in islamic literature, Harvard University Press, 2001.
- Lehenhausen, Muhammad (trad.), Jesus through shi’ite narration, selected by Mahdî Muntazir Qâ’im, Ansaryan Publication 2004.
- Lings, Martin, Le prophète Muhammad, Seuil, 2002.
- Rûmî, Jalâl-ud-Dîn, Le livre du dedans (Fihi-mâ-fîhi), traduit du persan par Eva de Vitray-Meyerovitch, Albin Michel, Spiritualités Vivantes, 1997.
- Rûmî, Jalâl-ud-Dîn, Odes mystiques (Dîwân-e Shams-e Tabrîzî), traduit du persan par Eva de Vitray Meyerovitch et Mohammad Mokri, Points, Sagesses, 1973.
- Urvoy, Marie-Thérèse, article "Jésus" in Amir-Moezzi, Mohammad Ali (dir.), Dictionnaire du Coran, Robert Laffont, 2007.


[1Ces prophètes sont appelés "ulû’-l-’azm", ou hommes de la décision. Certaines traditions incluent également David et son psautier.
[3Bahîra aurait ainsi reconnu le "Sceau de la Prophétie" ou "marque du Prophète" sur l’épaule du prophète Mohammad enfant.
[4Le prophète Mohammad signa un pacte avec cette communauté, fondant ainsi leur protection et leur droit en tant que minorité en terre musulmane. Ceci permettra par la suite de fonder le statut de "protégé" (dhimmi) ayant permis au cours des siècles suivants une riche - et souvent trop rare - coexistence entre les "religions du livre", notamment au Maghreb, en Espagne, en Mésopotamie, en Syrie…
[5La signification de "masîh" comme "oint" est distincte de celle du christianisme, étant donné qu’il est dénié à ’Isâ toute nature divine. "Masîh" n’en provient pas moins de la racine arabe "m-s-h" signifiant "oindre d’huile", provenant elle-même de l’hébreu.
[6Lehenhausen, Muhammad (trad.), Jesus through shi’ite narration, selected by Mahdî Muntazir Qâ’im, Ansaryân Publication 2004.
[7Cette notion est parfois traduite par "Esprit Saint" (Rûh al-Qudus), qui est cependant fondamentalement différente de la notion d’Esprit Saint comme troisième personne de la Trinité telle qu’elle est conçue par le christianisme. L’ "Esprit divin" ou "l’Esprit de Dieu" tel qu’il est le plus souvent évoqué dans la tradition islamique fait référence au souffle divin ayant insufflé la vie à Adam et qui, par extension, désigne la part de divin présent dans chaque être animé par ce "souffle". Concernant l’ "annonce" faite à Marie et la naissance miraculeuse du Christ selon l’islam, se référer à l’article "De Sainte Marie à Maryam Moqaddas : la Vierge dans la tradition islamique et la "Maison de Marie" à Éphèse", Revue de Téhéran, avril 2008.
[8"Pour Dieu, l’origine de Jésus est similaire à celle d’Adam. Dieu l’a créé d’argile, puis lui a dit "Sois !" et il fut." (3:59).
[9"Et quand Dieu dira : "Jésus, fils de Marie, rappelle-toi Mon bienfait sur toi et sur ta mère quand Je te fortifiais du Saint-Esprit. Au berceau tu parlais aux gens, tout comme en ton âge mûr."(5:110).
[10Coran, 19:30-32.
[11Cf. note 8.
[12"(Rappelle-toi le moment) où les Apôtres dirent : "ô Jésus, fils de Marie, se peut-il que ton Seigneur fasse descendre sur nous du ciel une table servie ?" Il leur dit : "Craignez plutôt Dieu, si vous êtes croyants". Ils dirent : "Nous voulons en manger, rassurer ainsi nos cœurs, savoir que tu nous as réellement dit la vérité et en être parmi les témoins"."Dieu, notre Seigneur, dit Jésus, fils de Marie, fais descendre du ciel sur nous une table servie qui soit une fête pour nous, pour le premier d’entre nous, comme pour le dernier, ainsi qu’un signe de Ta part. Nourris-nous : Tu es le meilleur des nourrisseurs." "Oui, dit Dieu, Je la ferai descendre sur vous. Mais ensuite, quiconque d’entre vous refuse de croire, Je le châtierai d’un châtiment dont Je ne châtierai personne d’autre dans l’univers." (5:112-115). "La Table Servie" est également le nom de la cinquième sourate du Coran.
[13Ibid, 5:110.
[14La sourate Al-Ikhlâs résume cette idée d’unicité et de transcendance absolue : "Dis : "Il est Dieu, Unique. Dieu, Le Seul à être imploré pour ce que nous désirons. Il n’a jamais engendré, ni n’a été engendré. Et nul n’est égal à Lui" Ibid, 112:1-4.
[15Ibid, 5:116.
[16Ibid, 5:117.
[17"Je t’enseignais le Livre, la Sagesse, la Thora et l’Evangile." (5:110).
[18"Et Nous avons envoyé après eux Jésus, fils de Marie, pour confirmer ce qu’il y avait dans la Thora avant lui. Et Nous lui avons donné l’Evangile, où il y a guide et lumière, pour confirmer ce qu’il y avait dans la Thora avant lui, et un guide et une exhortation pour les pieux." (5:46).
[19Coran, 57:27.
[20"Mohammad est le Messager de Dieu. Et ceux qui sont avec lui sont durs envers les mécréants, miséricordieux entre eux. Tu les vois inclinés, prosternés, recherchant de Dieu grâce et agrément. Leurs visages sont marqués par la trace laissée par la prosternation. Telle est leur image dans la Thora. Et l’image que l’on donne d’eux dans l’Evangile est celle d’une semence qui sort sa pousse, puis se raffermit, s’épaissit, et ensuite se dresse sur sa tige, à l’émerveillement des semeurs. [Dieu] par eux [les croyants] remplit de dépit les mécréants. Dieu promet à ceux d’entre eux qui croient et font de bonnes œuvres, un pardon et une énorme récompense." (48:29).
[21Matthieu, 13:23. Nous retrouvons la même parabole dans l’Evangile selon Saint Marc : "D’autres reçoivent la semence dans la bonne terre ; ce sont ceux qui entendent la parole, la reçoivent, et portent du fruit, trente, soixante, et cent pour un", Marc, 4:20.
[22Matthieu, 13:38.
[23"Et quand Jésus fils de Marie dit : "ô Enfants d’Israël, je suis vraiment le Messager de Dieu [envoyé] à vous, confirmateur de ce qui, dans la Thora, est antérieur à moi, et annonciateur d’un Messager à venir après moi, dont le nom sera "Ahmad"." (61:6).
[24Coran, 4:157-158. Au sein même du christianisme, cette thèse est également soutenue par les docétistes.
[25La figure de l’antéchrist ou du "Christ imposteur" (al-Masîh ad-Dajjâl) est une figure de l’eschatologie islamique prétendant tantôt égaler Dieu, tantôt être Dieu lui-même. Selon la tradition islamique, il est notamment prévu que lors du jour du Jugement Dernier, il apparaîtra aveugle de l’œil droit et engagera un ultime combat contre l’Imâm Mahdî ou "l’Imâm du Temps" (Imâm az-Zamân).
[26"O gens du Livre [chrétiens], n’exagérez pas dans votre religion, et ne dites de Dieu que la vérité. Le Messie Jésus, fils de Marie, n’est qu’un Messager de Dieu, Sa parole qu’Il envoya à Marie, et un souffle (de vie) venant de Lui. Croyez donc en Dieu et en Ses messagers. Et ne dites pas "Trois". Cessez ! Ce sera meilleur pour vous. Dieu n’est qu’un Dieu unique. Il est trop glorieux pour avoir un enfant. C’est à Lui qu’appartient tout ce qui est dans les cieux et sur la terre et Dieu suffit comme protecteur." (4:171).
[27Nous nous appuyons ici essentiellement sur la précieuse étude réalisée par François Jourdan dans son ouvrage Dieu des chrétiens, Dieu des musulmans, des repères pour comprendre, Editions de l’Œuvre, 2007.
[28Ibid, p.143.
[29Bukhârî, 4:54:506.
[30Coran, 5:82.
[31Lings, Martin, Le prophète Muhammad, Seuil, 2002.
[32’Allâmeh Majlîsî, Bihâr al-Anwâr, 23, 96, 3.
[33Prône de l’Imâm Mohammad Bâqir (Ve Imâm du chiisme), cité par Corbin, Henry, En islam iranien, aspects spirituels et philosophiques, Gallimard, T. 4., 1971, p.442.
[34Selon la tradition chiite, la princesse Narkès serait la descendante de Simon-Pierre (Sham’ûn), présenté comme étant l’ "héritier spirituel" (wasî) du Christ. Cf. "L’hagiographie du XIIe Imâm" in Corbin, Henry, En islam iranien, aspects spirituels et philosophiques, Gallimard, T. 4., 1971, p.442.
[35Hagiographie du XIIe Imâm selon Shaykh Sadûq, traduit par Henry Corbin in Corbin, Henry, En islam iranien, aspects spirituels et philosophiques, Gallimard, T. 4., 1971, p.313.
[36"La conception théophanique (nullement limitée à quelques savants spéculatifs, mais partagée par tous les milieux spirituels où firent éclosion les Apocryphes) est celle d’une Apparition qui est transparition de la divinité par le miroir de l’humanité, à la façon dont la lumière ne devient visible qu’en prenant forme et en transparaissant à travers la figure d’un vitrail. C’est une union qui est perçue non pas au plan des données sensibles, mais au plan de la Lumière qui les transfigure, c’est-à-dire dans la "Présence Imaginative". La divinité est dans l’humanité comme l’Image dans un miroir. […] Par contre, l’Incarnation est une union hypostatique. Elle advient "dans la chair".", Corbin, Henry, L’Imagination créatrice dans le soufisme d’Ibn ’Arabî, Entrelacs, 2006, p.286.
[37Cette vision est fondée sur l’anthropologie coranique selon laquelle Dieu aurait "insufflé" l’âme de chaque être. Cet événement est notamment relaté dans la sourate al-Hijr, lorsque Dieu s’adresse aux anges : "Je vais créer un homme d’argile crissante, extraite d’une boue malléable, et dès que Je l’aurais harmonieusement formé et lui aurait insufflé Mon souffle de vie, jetez-vous alors, prosternés devant lui" Alors, les Anges se prosternèrent tous ensemble", (15:28-30).
[38Rûmî, Jalâl-ud-Dîn, Le livre du dedans (Fihi-mâ-fîhi), traduit du persan par Eva de Vitray-Meyerovitch, Albin Michel, Spiritualités Vivantes, 1997.
[39Rûmî, Jalâl-ud-Dîn, Odes mystiques (Dîwân-e Shams-e Tabrîzî), traduit du persan par Eva de Vitray Meyerovitch et Mohammad Mokri, Points, Sagesses, 1973.
[40"Il" fait ici référence à l’ "Ami", c’est à dire la recherche de Dieu, ou de l’esprit divin présent dans chaque homme symbolisé par Jésus.
[41Allusion à la sourate "La Lumière" du Coran.
[42Rûmî, Jalâl-ud-Dîn, Odes mystiques (Dîwân-e Shams-e Tabrîzî), traduit du persan par Eva de Vitray Meyerovitch et Mohammad Mokri, Points, Sagesses, 1973.
[43Cette conception du Christ est parfaitement reflétée par cette anecdote citée par Semnânî : "Jésus sommeillait, ayant une brique pour coussin de tête. Alors vint le démon maudit, qui s’arrêta à son chevet. Lorsque Jésus eut perçu la présence du maudit, il s’éveilla et dit : "Pourquoi es-tu venu près de moi, ô maudit ? - Je suis venu chercher mes affaires. - Et quelles affaires sont donc à toi ici ? - Cette brique sur laquelle tu reposes ta tête." Alors Rûh Allah (Spiritus Dei = Jésus) saisit la brique et lui lança à la face". Op. cit. Corbin, Henry, En islam iranien, aspects spirituels et philosophiques, T.3, Gallimard, 1971, p.284.
[44Cette position a néanmoins été fortement critiquée par certains penseurs et gnostiques chiites comme Haydar Amolî, pour qui le sceau de la walâyat ne peut être que le Premier Imâm.
[45Coran, 3:14.
[46Mat. 19:29.
[47"Les Sept organes subtils selon Semnânî" in Corbin, Henry, En islam iranien, aspects spirituels et philosophiques, T.3, Gallimard, 1971, p.287.