The world is full of life and human beings are the best of creation. It is also natural that every life will end one day as the Holy Quran very rightly mentions:
Every soul shall taste of death. (Al Quran 3:186)
But some people remain alive after their death and they live in the hearts of millions of people for thousands of years; they rule on minds and hearts’ of millions of people. The world had seen such influential and remarkable people throughout the human history, but some left unforgettable, impressive and extraordinary remarks on the hearts and memories of people.
Moses, Buddha, Krishna, Jesus and Mohammad (peace be upon them all) were among the most influential and extraordinary people of the human history. They gave so much, through out their lives, for the good of mankind.
With the start of December, every year, streets and homes are decorated with colorful lights and designs, and everywhere you can see the colors and trees of Christmas.
Many Companies prepare year long for shopping spree during the holidays. With celebrations in the air, People rush to markets in December, for their shopping, to select gifts for their family, friends and loved ones. Markets become filled with people and public is offered with variety of goods to shop.
During Christmas time, many people ask, do Muslims celebrate Christmas?
The simple answer, which almost every Muslim tries to give, is that, Muslims do not celebrate Christmas like Christians do.
However, Muslims do cherish the message, and benefit from the teachings and character of the Jesus Christ, may peace be on him. And Muslims hold great love, respect and honor not only for Jesus but also for his mother, remembering mother Mary as a role model for them, as described in the Holy Quran.
Jesus in the Holy Quran:
One can assess the importance of this by the fact that the Holy Quran, the Divine Book for the Muslims, has mentioned the name of Jesus Christ nearly 25 times and also mentioned his mother the Holy Mary for couple of times, in different chapters of the Holy Quran. The Quran makes it obligatory for the Muslims to believe in all the prophets and messengers of God, including Jesus.
There is no denying the fact that the Holy Quran makes it incumbent on every Muslim to believe in all the prophets, but as Hadhrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad, the IV Caliph of the Promised Messiah, peace be with him, beautifully says:
When he speaks of Jesus Christ or Moses or Krishna or Buddha with veneration and love, he does so because he has no other option. It is a part of the fundamental article of his faith to extend not just a human courtesy, but to genuinely believe in their truth and honor. In the light of this, this article of faith appears to hold an importance of global scale. It establishes inter- religious peace and harmony and genuinely creates an atmosphere of mutual trust and love. Like the Unity of God it holds the intrinsic quality of being irreplaceable — there is no alternative. (An Elementary Study of Islam, P: 23)
The Holy Quran states:
Say ye: ‘We believe in Allah and what has been revealed to us, and what was revealed to Abraham and Ishmael, and Isaac, and Jacob and his children, and what was given to Moses and Jesus, and what was given to all other Prophets from their Lord. We make no difference between any of them; and to Him we submit ourselves.’ (Al Quran 2:137)
And We gave Jesus, son of Mary, clear proofs and strengthened him with the Spirit of holiness. (Al Quran 2:254 / 2:88)
When the angels said, ‘O Mary, Allah gives thee glad tidings of a word from Him; his name shall be the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, honored in this world and in the next, and of those who are granted nearness to God; ‘And he shall speak to the people in the cradle and when of middle age, and he shall be of the righteous.’ (Al Quran 3:46-47)
Mother Mary in the Holy Quran:
The Holy Quran extended great honor and respect to Mary, to such a high extent that God has named an entire chapter of the Holy Quran by her name, ‘Sura Maryam’, and Maryam is an Arabic name for Mary. The Holy Quran has given a great status to Mary and refutes all the charges raised against her, and says that the mother of Jesus was righteous woman and that Satan had no share in his birth. The Holy Quran states:
And remember when the angels said, ‘O Mary, Allah has chosen thee and purified thee and chosen thee above the women of all peoples.’ (Al Quran 3:43)
And his mother was a truthful woman. (Al Quran 5:76)
The Holy Quran bears constant testimony about chastity and noble character of mother Mary and condemns the Jews, when they accuse mother Mary:
And because of their (Jews) disbelief and their uttering against Mary a grievous calumny. (Al Quran 4:157)
Furthermore, the Holy Quran pays such great tribute to Mary, that it gives two examples for the Muslim believers, both men and women, as role model, wife of Pharaoh and mother Mary – the mother of Jesus. The Holy Quran says:
And Allah sets forth for those who believe the example of the wife of Pharaoh when she said, ‘My Lord! Build for me a house with Thee in the Garden; and deliver me from Pharaoh and his work, and deliver me from the wrongdoing people;’ And the example of Mary, the daughter of ‘Imran, who guarded her private parts — so We breathed into him (Jesus) of Our Spirit — and she fulfilled in her person the words of her Lord and His Books and was one of the obedient. (Al Quran 66:12-13)
Mary, the mother of Jesus, represents those righteous servants and believers of God, Muslims, who having given up all sin and having made peace with God, are blessed with Divine inspiration.
I believe that, this is a true manifestation of love with Jesus and Mary to exhibit through our deeds the noble character and example they have set forth for us, and to live a pure, pious, righteous and virtuous life, striving in the way of God the Almighty.
We hold great respect and affection for Jesus and Marry in our hearts. We wish “Merry Christmas” to all our Christian brothers and sisters.
Additionally, we wish a wonderful year of 2017, full of blessings, peace, prosperity, health and happiness; and of peace and blessings of Allah, for the entire humanity. Amen
By Laiq Ahmed Atif, President Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, Malta firstname.lastname@example.org