What is true “Religion” How to recognize a true religion?
None of us has the opportunity to choose the environment and conditions for birth. Religion and ideology are imposed on a person by the family or society at the very beginning of its life path. In adolescence, a person still has no doubt about the correctness of the convictions of his community and believes that the rest should definitely adhere to it. But after growing up and getting acquainted with other ideas and beliefs, he begins to wonder about the correctness of his ideology. Seekers of the truth often come to perplexity, realizing that every religion, ideology, sect, philosophy tries to impersonate the one and only true. Indeed, each of them calls for good. They can not all be genuine, because everyone accuses the rest of them of wrong. So how not to make a mistake in the choice?
God has endowed us with reason so that we can make our own decisions. The choice of religion is the most important decision in a person’s life, because the whole further existence depends on him. Therefore, everyone should carefully, slowly and impartially consider all the arguments presented.
Like other religions and philosophies, Islam calls itself the only true way to God. In this respect, it is similar to other systems. This brochure gives several arguments in favor of this statement. However, do not forget that the true path can be seen only by discarding all the emotions and prejudices that so often distort reality. Only in this case a person will be able to use the God-given intelligence and make the right and rational decision.
There are several arguments in support of the statement that Islam is a religion from God. The next three are just a small part of them. The first is based on the divine origin of the names of religion and the completeness of its meaning. The second is a unique and unassailable teaching about the relationship between God, man and the world around him. The third argument comes from the fact that people from all over the world have turned to Islam at all times. These three components are sufficient for reason and logic to find religion to be genuine. We will look at these ideas in more detail.
“True Religion.” The meaning of the word “Islam” and the meaning of the names of other religions.
You should know and understand the meaning of the word “Islam”. From Arabic it translates as ‘submit to the One True God (Allah)’. Conquered in this way is called a [Muslim]. Thus, the word “Islam” does not occur on behalf of a person or people and is not invented by a later generation of followers, as in the case of Christianity, whose name derives from the names of Jesus Christ, Buddhism – from Gautama Buddha, Confucianism – from Confucius, Marxism – from Karl Marx, Judaism – from the tribe of Judah, Hinduism – from the Hindus. Islam (obedience to God’s will) is the religion sent to Adam, the first man and the first prophet of God. This religion was adhered to by all the prophets sent by Allah to humanity. Further, the Lord Himself chooses this name for the last religion and clearly denotes it in the Quran – the final Scripture sent down to people:
“… Today I have perfected your religion for you, brought my favor to you to the end, and approved Islam for you as a religion” (Quran 5:3).
“From someone who is looking for a different religion other than Islam, it will never be accepted …” (Quran 3:85).
Islam does not call itself the new religion that came with the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) to Arabia in the seventh century, but rather the final image of the true religion of Allah Almighty, the one that was relegated to Adam and all future prophets.
Here we can mention two other religions, also calling themselves true religions from God. In the Bible you will not find any verses where the Lord would call the religion of Moses and his followers Judaism, or the faith of Jesus and his followers by Christianity. In other words, the name “Judaism” and “Christianity” do not have a divine origin or confirmation. Some time after the departure of Jesus, his religion was called “Christianity.”
What was the real religion of Jesus, not related to his name? The religion of Jesus – his teaching – called for certain principles to be followed in the relationship with God. In Islam, Jesus is the prophet of God. In Arabic, his name is pronounced as Isa. Like the prophets before him, Jesus called for obedience to the will of God (this is the basic principle of Islam). For example, as we learn from the New Testament, Jesus taught followers to cry out to God with these words:
“Our Father who art in heaven!”; Hallowed be thy name.
Your kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven “(Luke 1: 2, Matthew 6: 9-10).
This idea was highlighted by Jesus in many of his sayings from the Gospels. For example, he taught that only the obedient will inherit Paradise.
‘Not everyone who says to me,’ Lord, Lord, ‘will enter the Kingdom of Heaven, but He who does the will of My Father in Heaven’ (Matthew 7:21).
Jesus himself declared his obedience to God.
“I can not do anything from Myself. I hear and judge, and my judgment is just; For I seek not my own will; but the will of him that sent me’ (John 5:30).
In many of the verses of the Gospels, Jesus gave the disciples to understand that he is not that One True God. Speaking, for example, about the Hour, he said:
‘No one knows the day; or the hour, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father” (Mark 13:32).
‘Thus; Jesus’; like the prophets before him and the last prophet after, taught the religion of Islam – obedience to the will of the One True God.
Islam warns against worshiping a person and calls to worship only God (Allah).
The essence of worship is full submission to God’s will, and therefore, the main message of the divine religion of Islam is worshiping God alone, as well as avoiding worshiping someone other than Him: a person, an object, a place, etc. Since everything except God is His creation, one can say that Islam warns against the worship of creatures and calls to honor the Creator. He alone is worthy of worship, and only He answers our prayers.
If a person prays to a tree and receives an answer to a prayer, then the respondent, of course, is not a tree, but the Lord. Someone thinks this is obvious, but admirers of the tree may disagree. Also worshipers of Jesus, Buddha, Krishna, St. Christopher or even Muhammad receive answers not from their “saints”, but from the Most High. Jesus never called for worshiping him, as the Holy Quran says:
“Allah said:” O Jesus, son of Maryam (Mary), did you say to people: ‘Accept me and my mother with two gods along with Allah’? He said; ‘You are the Most Pure!’ How could I say what I do not have the right to? … “(Quran 5: 116).
In his prayers, Jesus worshiped not himself, but God. In the Gospel he says:
“… it is written,” Lord, worship your Lord, and serve Him only “(Luke 4: 8).
These basic principles are set forth in the first Surah of the Quran – Al Fatih:
‘To You alone we worship and You alone we seek help for” (Quran 1: 5).
The Lord also says:
‘Your Lord (Allah) said:’ Call upon me, and I will answer you” (Quran 40:60).
The main message of Islam (ie, worshiping God alone) also draws a clear line between the Creator and His creatures. God is not equal to his creatures and is not a part of them. Also, his creations are not equal to God and are not His part.
Perhaps this seems obvious, but the worship of creations in place of the Creator in most cases is based on ignorance or disdain. People sometimes worship creations and call it worship of God because they believe in the presence of God in every creation. However, Islam, with which every prophet came, warns against the worship of creations directly or indirectly.
In the Quran, the Most High clearly states:
“We sent an prophet (messenger) to every nation:” Worship Allah and avoid paganism “(Quran 16:36).
When asked why idol worshipers bow before statues created by man, they invariably reply that they worship not the idols themselves, but God, whom the statues personify. According to them, the stone idol for them is only a point of the center of God’s essence, but not God Himself. Anyone who accepts the idea that God is present in His creations is forced to accept such an argument of idolatry. While understanding the main idea of Islam will never agree to idol worship, no matter how reasonable (at first glance) explanation it is given.
The attributed divinity was often justified by the erroneous belief that God was present in the works. These people went even further and claimed that there was more God in them than in other creations, and therefore, the rest should obey them and worship the God personified by them. Also talking about the divine essence of others found support among people convinced that God is present in a person.
So, one who understands the essence of Islam, under no circumstances will not agree to bow to another person. The religion of God is a clear call to the worship of the Creator and a warning against the deification of creations. This is the main commandment of Islam: “La Ilaha Illa Allah.”
The utterance of this phrase sincerely and with understanding, as well as the recognition of the prophecy of Muhammad automatically introduces a person into the bosom of Islam, and faith in it is guaranteed by Paradise. So, the last prophet of Islam, (may peace and blessings of almighty Allah be upon him). said:
“Anyone who says,” There is no deity but God, and will die, being true to this conviction, will enter Paradise. “
The conviction in this declaration of faith presupposes submission to God and worshiping Him as taught by God’s prophets, as well as abandoning worship to false gods.