God’s Messenger

Over five hundred years before the birth of Jesus Christ, the angel Gabriel twice appeared to the Hebrew prophet Daniel in Babylon, revealing to him future events, such as the coming of a Persian empire, and then a Greek; and that the city of Jerusalem and the Temple of God at Jerusalem which were destroyed and desolated by Babylon would be restored and rebuilt; and that Israel’s Messiah would come, and be cut off; and would establish an eternal kingdom.

So after the rise and fall of the Persian and Greek empires, and Jerusalem and the Temple had been restored and rebuilt; and the time had finally come for the return of Elijah the prophet to prepare the way of the Messiah (described and foretold by Isaiah and Malachi); Gabriel then appeared to Zacharias, a priest of Israel serving God in the Temple at Jerusalem. Gabriel told Zacharias that his wife Elizabeth would bear a son, named John (the Baptist), and that he would go before and prepare the way of the Lord in the spirit and power of Elijah.

And in the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, Gabriel was sent by God to Nazareth, to a woman of Israel named Mary — a virgin lawfully bound by marriage to a man of Israel named Joseph, a descendent of King David. Gabriel told Mary that she would give birth to a son, named JESUS, and that He would be called the Son of God, and the Son of the Highest because her conception would be by the Spirit of God, and the power of the Highest; and that the Lord God would give to Jesus the throne of his father David, and that he would reign forever, and that there would be no end to his kingdom. Gabriel then informed Mary that her previously-barren and aged relative Elizabeth was now in the sixth month of quite a miraculous pregnancy also. After this, Mary went to Elizabeth, living in Judea; and when Mary greeted her, Elizabeth testified that the baby John within her jumped for joy at the sound of Mary’s voice. And John and his mother were filled with the Spirit of God; and Elizabeth referred to Mary as, “the mother of my Lord”.

And as Joseph was considering privately putting Mary away because of her unexplained pregnancy, the angel of the Lord came to Joseph in a dream, and told him that Mary’s conception was of the Holy Spirit. Afterwards Mary and Joseph went to Bethlehem, the city of David where Jesus was born in fulfillment of the prophecy of Micah 5:2, written about seven hundred years before Jesus’ birth.

So all the words and prophecies of the angel Gabriel came to pass: all the words spoken to Daniel the prophet, and all the words spoken to Zacharias the priest, and to Mary the mother of Jesus. All this is ‘His-story’, as we say.

But reportedly, some six hundred years later, someone named Muhammad — who was not a Hebrew, and not a Jew, and could not read the Prophets — told the unbelieving Jews of Arabia that the angel Gabriel had appeared to him, saying that he, Muhammad, was God’s messenger and prophet; and that Jesus was not the Son of God, as Gabriel had said to Mary; and that Jesus was not the Lamb of God sacrificially slain on the cross for Israel’s sins and the sins of the whole world; and that the Anointed, Jesus, was not the Son of the Highest who rose from the dead and ascended on high and is ruling over all at the right hand of God until all His enemies are set below His feet; and that those who don’t submit or surrender must die.

So which one is God’s messenger? — the angel Gabriel or Muhammad?

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