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By David Thomas

By means of the 10th century Islamic theology had develop into an built-in method in which theologians built subtle bills of the character of the realm and God's courting with it. additionally they used it to set up proofs that Islam used to be the one rationally tenable kind of trust, development those partially on proofs of the illogicalities in different faiths, together with Christianity. via excerpts from key works of the theologians al-Nashi' al-Akbar, al-Maturidi, al-Baqillani and 'Abd al-Jabbar, this booklet exhibits how Muslim theologians during this interval made use of Christian doctrines as examples of faulty considering to aid verify the correctness in their personal theology, and the way between Muslim theologians Christianity had ceased to draw severe realization as a rival to Islam.

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The fact that he does not examine the details of what his opponents try to explain, but reduces their models to a simple case of the Divinity becoming implicated in the experiences of the human Jesus, both shows that he himself held too strongly to the belief in the transcendence of God to countenance Christian explanations, and suggests that those explanations were regarded as too far-fetched to command serious attention from Muslim theologians. Al-N¯ashi" now moves to the Trinity, and directs his arguments against the three hypostases.

These are the inhabitants of Armenia. 22. 35 33 These sects will be the Q¯ ul¯urusites and the Redeemed, §§ 16 and 17, who rejected the teaching of ‘the community’ that Christ’s crucifixion and death affected him only in his human nature, § 3 above. ¯ a also refers to the L¯uliy¯aniyya (corrected from L¯ulb¯aniyya) and Akhrygh¯uriyya 34 Ab¯ u #Is¯ at the end of his refutation of Christianity, among sects he intends to refute in another (non-extant) work (Thomas, Incarnation, pp. 276–277, § 352, also pp.

Al-N¯ashi" concludes this brief account of doctrines with a list of other Christian beliefs, which centre on the books of the Bible, human responsibility and divine reward and punishment, § 4. ¯ıd. There is nothing about a possible reason for the Incarnation or about the atonement (which would surely not have been omitted by Ibn al-#Ass¯al if it had been present). So, unlike ¯a the comparable earlier authors al-Q¯asim Ibn Ibr¯ah¯ım and Ab¯u #Is¯ al-Warr¯aq who give full accounts of Christian doctrines,28 and like Ab¯u #Al¯ı al-Jubb¯a"¯ı who concentrates only on these two doctrines,29 alN¯ashi" seems indifferent to Christian beliefs as they are held within the communities, and appears to be primarily interested in those beliefs that can be recognised as alternatives to Muslim doctrines.

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