Click here for previous session

 

 

Consequently, the “Lord’s Christ” (i.e., the “Lord’s Christos”—the “Lord’s
anointed,” or the “Lord’s messiah”) list includes Saul the Christ, Cyrus the Christ, and
the many Davidic kings—all “Christs.” Or at least, that’s how the Bible would read if
everyone’s title were translated the same.
But they aren’t.
In the selective wisdom of the Bible translators, christos is translated “anointed”
in every case but that of Jesus Christ. When the word “anointed” is found in any English
translation of the Bible, a person can safely assume that the underlying Greek is the same
christos from which Jesus gets his unique label of “Christ.” This exclusive title of
“Christ” with a capital C, and “Messiah” with a capital M, is singularly impressive. In
fact, it makes a person believe that the term implies some unique spiritual link, distinct
from the flock of lay “messiahs” with small M’s and no C at all—the christos hidden in
the alternative translation of “anointed.”
All this represents a point of embarrassment to educated Christians, for it suggests
the questionable ethic of doctrinally driven Bible translation. Those who recognize the
concern might also recognize that yet another fundamental difference between
Unitarian/Islamic and Trinitarian beliefs exists in a vacuum of biblical support for the
Trinitarian viewpoint.
The Islamic religion confirms that Jesus was an “anointed” one of God, but does
not strain to elevate him beyond the station of prophethood, or to appear more unique
than others bearing similar title or prophetic office. The most ancient biblical scriptures,
as discussed above, support the Islamic belief that just as all prophets and Davidic kings
were christos, so was Jesus. The conclusion that no particular king or prophet should bear unique labeling, separate and distinct from others possessing similar title, is not
unreasonable.
One intriguing directive of the Islamic religion is for mankind to be truthful and
avoid extremes. In this instance, unjustified literary license is to be shunned. Honest
translation should avoid the bias of doctrinal prejudice. A document perceived to be
revelation from God should not be adjusted to suit personal or sectarian desires. Such a
document should be held in due reverence, and translated faithfully. And the challenge to
mankind has always been just this—for the faithful to mold their lives to the truth rather
than the other way around. This concept, encompassing the recognition of Jesus and
cautioning against extremes in religion, is succinctly expressed in surah 4:171 of the
Holy Qur’an:
O People of the Book! Commit no excesses in your religion: nor
say of Allah anything but the truth. Christ Jesus the son of Mary was (no
more than) a Messenger of Allah, and His Word, which He bestowed on
Mary, and a Spirit proceeding from Him: so believe in Allah and His
messengers (TMQ 4:171).

 

Continue reading…..