Rebuttal to Gerhard Nehls

Rebuttal: The Gospel of Barnabas by Gerhard Nehls

The article is very much similar (at least 90%) to the article by “Brother Andrew”. One must have copied from the other. The article by Gerhard Nehls can be found here:

http://www.answering-islam.org/Nehls/Answer/barnabas.html

The “Gospel of Barnabas” (G.o.B.) first appeared in Holland in 1709. This manuscript was written in Italian and supplied with footnotes in poor Arabic. The sources of the “Gospel” are unknown. This document is now preserved in the Imperial Museum in Vienna.

Gerhard Nehls must be corrected here. Holland is not of relevance at all. Even the date mentioned is related to its presence in Holland, which is irrelevant.
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.
This clearly refutes the date mentioned by Gerhard Nehls. Perhaps, he is referring to Holland only and not to the date when it was first known to people outside the Church.
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”
Gerhard Nehls criticizes the introduction to the Gospel translated into Urdu to be from the Muslim point of view. This is not something to criticize; the same Gospel presented to the Christians has a very negative view of the Gospel.
Mr. Nehls argues that the Muslims use this Gospel to prove that the Bible is corrupt. This is not an accurate claim; Muslims and open-minded people use the same Bible to prove that it is corrupt.

http://www.answering-christianity.com/ac6.htm#links

He mentions that this claim of no crucifixion has been mentioned in the “Gospel of Barnabas” but forgets to mention that it has been mentioned in many other recently discovered books including “The Apocalypse of Peter”. However, only this book has been touched and his claims will be corrected by this article, Insha’Allah (God Almighty willing).

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 politics behind this secret are better known to the Church but this claim of rejection of documents is not entirely accurate and acceptable. Many popes kept silent on this issue and the reason is simple. The recently discovered books have the mentioning of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) in them. Several Islamic concepts can be founding those books. All these match exactly with the Gospel of Barnabas.

The reason why the Church rejected the Gospel of Barnabas and kept it a secret is not a mystery. Such a book would have destroyed their power. Their self-made concept of free salvation and forgiveness through the Church would have been thrown away. It was due to this evil, along with many others, that Prophet Daniel (peace be upon him) gave his famous prophecy:

http://islamicweb.com/bible/good5.htm

The article argues that there is, in fact, no acceptable evidence for the existence of a genuine “Gospel of Barnabas”. This argument is based on pure denial. 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.

Fra Marino’s account of his discovery of the G.o.B. in the library of Pope Sixtus V (A.D. 1585-1589) is not a story likely to be believed:

Pure rejection! However, as per the latest findings, this story is believed to be true. It came out of the Church and that is the biggest problem for the Christians.

Problems in the New Testament regarding Barnabas:

In the G.o.B. (Chapter 1) “Barnabas” is called an Apostle. This is not correct in its implication. Although Barnabas is referred to as an Apostle (Acts 14:4,14), the G.o.B. concept is quite different.
The conversion of Barnabas took place after the Day of Pentecost and consequently he does not qualify for apostleship as outlined in Acts 1:21-22 (and bearing in mind I Corinthians 15:8, 9:1-2, 1:1, Romans 1:1 etc.).

Some errors can be found that indicate some sort of distortion or a secret.
“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:

http://www.answering-christianity.com/adeel_khan/Why_Paul_should_not_be_trusted.htm

http://www.answering-christianity.com/adeel_khan/Paul_v.htm

Much more in section 1:

http://www.answering-christianity.com/ac6.htm#links

If the reality of Paul is kept in mind, then one finds no fault with the claim and position of Barnabas.

First we should like to observe that all quotations in the G.o.B. from Old and New Testament are taken from the Vulgate translation.

The date of the Vulgate translation mentioned above is simply wonderful. It brings to mind the following quotation:

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.

The source is the other way round!

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The surprised reader of the G.o.B. finds Nazareth on the shore of Lake Galilee (Chapter 20), whereas it is a town miles away from the Lake, surrounded by mountains.

An interesting point made by Gerhard Nehls but if we read what the Gospel says, we do not see anything interesting.

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. A 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.

In the next chapter, 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.

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 and not of any interest to anyone.

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.

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.

“Jesus drew near to the Priest (High Priest) with reverence, but he was wishful to bow himself down and worship Jesus, when Jesus cried out: ‘Beware of that which thou doest, Priest of the Living God! Sin not against our God!” (Chapter 93).
This statement is so contrary to the New Testament, that it needs no explanation.

Jesus (peace be upon him) is a Prophet of God and he never accepted worship. Only two incidents can appear as accepting worship but only if they are shown out of context. The incident of bowing down to Jesus (peace be upon him) which is similar to Esau bowing down to Jacob or a woman bowing down to David etc. The second incident is the one relating to “My lord and My God…”

All such incidents and their proper explanations can be found here

http://www.answering-christianity.com/at.htm

In Chapter 3 of the G.o.B. the birth of Christ is described as having been painless. This belief was not current in the Church before Thomas Aquinas (died 1278) but is mentioned in Sura 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 with this story at all.

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 furhter 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 according to the G.o.B. and all the Muslim prayer times are mentioned. (Drs. J. Slomp, page 128).
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!

Not before the Fourth Century A.D. was the title “Virgin” given to Mary, yet it appears in the G.o.B.

Wasn’t she a virgin before that? The view of Gerhard Nehls is quite strange and opposite to what others would hold. He takes many things the other way round. 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 confirm this fact.

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.

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).

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.

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?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Denarius

Gerhard Nehls has been refuted by simple historical facts here!

In Chapter 152 we are informed that soldiers were “rolled out of the temple as one rolleth casks of wood when they are washed to refill them with wine.”
Wooden barrels were invented in Gaul and were not used in the East in New Testament times. Wine and other liquids were stored in skins.

It is claimed by Gerhard Nehls that wooden crockery was not used at the time of Prophet Jesus (peace be upon him). The source of this claim is the Bible. The Bible itself is a debatable book and should not be taken as a source or evidence. However, the verse of the Bible shall be considered here as well.

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.

In Chapter 97 Mohammed is clearly called the Messiah. The Qur’an, as well as the Bible confers this title on Jesus. It is somehow strange to realize that in the introduction of the G.o.B. Jesus is called Christ and in Chapters 42 and 82 “Barnabas” denies that Jesus is the Messiah. Only a theologically very ignorant person could have made such statements, because “Christos” is the Greek word for the Hebrew “Messiah”.

In “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).

When we read the Jewish books, we see that there is no problem with this claim as other Prophets have also been called by this title in 1 Samuel 15:17, 1 Kings 1:39, 1 Samuel 16:13, Leviticus 4.

We see that this claim to reject the Gospel of Barnabas is not a valid excuse.

This is not a contradiction with the Bible at all. The word mentioned here is “true” for the book of Moses. Who has it?

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.

The Italian poet Dante lived about the time of the composition of the G.o.B. (1265-1321) and it is interesting to notice a number of quotations from Dante’s works in the G.o.B. There are many and they can hardly be regarded as coincidences. The G.o.B. quotes Jesus as saying to Peter: “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.” (Chapter 135a).
This is exactly what Dante says in Cantos V, VI, etc. of his “Inferno”. Again “Barnabas” says that God, having created the human senses, condemned them “to hell and to intolerable snow and ice” (Chapter 106, which corresponds with Cantos XXVIII and III of the “Inferno”). The description of human sins and their returning at the end like a river to Satan, who is their source, is another indirect quotation from Dante’s description of the rivers of hell. 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. The differentiation between degrees of glory, and the absence of all feuds and jealousies in heaven, are taken entirely from Dante’s “Paradise”, Canto III. But still stronger evidence that “Barnabas” quotes directly or indirectly from Dante is his description of the “Geography of Heaven”. There “Barnabas” agrees with Dante and contradicts even the Qur’an itself. The Qur’an (Sura 2:29) says that the heavens are seven in number, while “Barnabas” gives the number as nine (Chapter 178a) (Gairdner, pages 19-21).
These few indications are sufficient evidence that the writer of the G.o.B. must have been acquainted with the writings of Dante and consequently must have I lived after Dante, or else been a contemporary of his.

The point mentioned by Gerhard Nehls here is 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.

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 Mr. Nehls is wrong and is correct the other way round. It is actually Dante who has copied from religious texts.

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.

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, Barnabas did not copy from anywhere as he was the source. Gerhard Nehls 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.

Mr. Nehls says that according to the Qur’an, heavens are seven in number whereas according to Barnabas and Dante, they are nine. Let’s examine this claim. 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. Dante must also have known this thing through knowledge of science.

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.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pharisees

In Chapter 82 mention is made of the “Years of the Jubilee, which now cometh every 100 years.” The Year of Jubilee, according to the Old Testament, was every 50th year (after seven times seven years). The origin of this faulty information is as follows: 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. This was thus the only time that the Year of Jubilee was intended as a centenary occasion – it never was in practice. (Gairdner, page 19).

The year of Jubilee was debatable among the popes! The Old Testament is also a corrupted book (as mentioned above) 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 Gospel of Barnabas one of them? Again the source is the other way round, the reason being the paragraph from the Oxford Dictionary of the Christian Church.

Eve is said to have eaten an “apple” in Paradise (Chapters 40 and 41). We are well aware that Eve ate an unspecified fruit, but the belief that this was an apple dates from a very much later date.

This statement only shows ignorance. It is recommended that the writer read books recently discovered. The apple fact is clearly mentioned and this fact is even mentioned in books written much before the coming of Jesus (peace be upon him).

Another proof of the G.o.B. being Medieval in origin, is that we have a report (Chapter 99) of a duel between two rival lovers. This type of chivalry was a creation of Medieval society (Gairdner, page 24).

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 that has been discovered recently. Such sort of crimes have no date in history and have existed since ever.

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 honours 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:

http://www.answering-christianity.com/101_bible_contradictions.htm

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.

We read that Ishmael was offered on the altar by Abraham (Chapter 44). This is clearly an Islamic concept.

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!

Genesis 16:3 states that Hagar was a legitimate wife of Abraham!

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).

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 to read and for this he gave the excuse that it was written by 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.

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:

http://www.answering-christianity.com/predict.htm

Even the name of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) has been mentioned several times in the corrupted 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.

Muslims who accept the G.o.B. ought to consider the fact that in Chapter 115 it very strongly endorses monogamy.

Likewise we refer to Chapter 38, in which the Islamic principle of abrogation is rejected.

http://www.answering-christianity.com/polygamy.htm

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 in the link provided.

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).

One response to “Rebuttal to Gerhard Nehls

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