As a minister, I have seen it becoming more common for both Christians and Muslims to say they worship the same God. Recently, one of our teen church members asked if it was okay for him to read the Quran and go with his friend to the mosque. Not because he wanted to convert but because his Muslim friend invited him. ‘After all, God is the same, right?’ When he asked me that, I knew I had to address the question from a Christian standpoint because so much misinformation is floating around. So, how many times is Allah mentioned in the bible?
Allah is not mentioned in the Bible. Neither the Old nor New Testaments talk about Allah because Islam came up 600 years after the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The closest words found to the word ‘Allah’ is ‘alah’ and ‘elah’ in Isaiah 6:13.
In this article, I comprehensively looked at Allah in the context of the Bible and Christianity. I considered the writings of seasoned theologians and scholars as well as Christian leaders. Keep reading to learn this and much more!
Who Is Allah According to The Bible?
Interestingly, the word ‘Allah’ is not found in either the Hebrew or the Greek Bible. The closest word that Biblical scholars have found to Allah is the Hebrew word “alah” which means to curse and mourn or the word “elah” which refers to a turpentine tree (Isaiah 6:13). It could also mean an oak tree. None of these words were used to mean God.
But according to general Christian understanding, Allah is the one and only God in Islam. ‘Allah’ is the standard Arabic word for God and is used by Arabic-speaking Christians and Jews. Muslims also use this name. Allah is known as the focal point of the Islamic religion. He is the sole sovereign power in Islam. As for some of Allah’s qualities, Muslims describe him as the Ultimate Creator, Judge, Protector, and Rewarder. He is also omnipotent, all-merciful, and unique, according to Islam.
What Does the Bible Say About Allah?
The Bible does not say anything about Allah because Islam came 600 years after the resurrection of Jesus. Samuel Green from the Australian Fellowship of Evangelical Students, covers this topic extensively. He points out that in Acts, the apostles evangelized to many groups such as the Romans, the Jews, and the Samaritans. Muslims are not mentioned because they did not exist at the time. Islam and the concept of Allah would only come centuries later. Green does, however, say that God warned us of false prophets in Matthew 7:15-16 and Matthew 24:24-25.
Some bring the argument that when translated to Arabic, the word ‘Allah’ will then be in the Christian Bible. Mike Tisdell from the Biblical Missiology Journal tries to address this. He explains that while Allah is the proper translation for God in Greek, Hebrew, and Aramaic, in other languages such as Persian and French, Allah is a proper noun, not a common noun. It can therefore only refer to one deity – the Islamic god.
Is Allah a Different God From the Biblical God?
Mr. Daniel Janosik from the Columbia International University speculates that Allah from Islam and the Biblical God are similar by definition but contextually, they are not the same. He leans on the argument that Islam does not recognize Jesus Christ as the Son of God. They view Jesus as a mortal human being that taught the word, not as God. Allah cannot, therefore, be the same God as that of Christianity because he is not known to be the Father of Christ.
In the Anglican bishop’s book, Muhammad and the Christian: A Question of Response, Kenneth Cragg also holds the same belief. He understands that Islam and Christianity have similar principles but fundamental factors such as the Holy Trinity and Jesus Christ are not commonly shared. Additionally, he brings up the fact that Muslims regard Christians and Jews to be “People of the Book”, meaning they place a lot of authority on the Bible. Many Muslims are under the impression that Christianity is not centered on religion but instead on the Holy Book. This is, however, false.
With this in mind, it is important to address that Catholic leaders have held a different opinion on the matter. For example, in 1965, the Vatican Council approved the Nostra Aetate: Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions, which explicitly said that Muslims and Christians adore one God. More recently, in 2019, Pope Francis and Sheik el-Tayeb co-signed the Human Fraternity for World Peace and Living Together. This document recognized that both religions worship one deity.
Can Christians Call God Allah?
Many Biblical theologians such as Candice Lucey do not think that Christians should call God Allah. She explains that although Christians and Muslims have similar principles such as modest dressing, helping the less fortunate, not stealing, etc., the two religions worship different entities. Core teachings in both religions clash. For example, Muslims do not believe that they are worthy of grace. Nothing they do will ever suffice to please Allah. Contrastingly, Christians know that God forgave their sins when Jesus Christ died on the Cross and was resurrected. Muslims do not believe in the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Christians cannot, therefore, call God Allah because the name placed on God is an indication of what one believes. It is, however, not considered heretic to call God Allah if you are an Arabic-speaking Christian since Allah is the Arabic translation for God.
As a devout Christian, I have always been passionate about the Christian faith. This inspired me to pursue a degree in Religious studies and a Masters in Theology in college. I have also been privileged to teach 4 Christian courses in a college and university. Since I am dedicated to spreading the word of God, I am actively involved in the Church. Additionally, I share his word online and cover diverse topics on the Christian faith through my platform. You can read more about me on the about us page.