The Quran's sources for its stories about Jesus

If you really dig into the Quran, there are plenty of stories of Jesus there that, like other stories, are easily traced to pre-existing stories. Scholars have fairly easily demonstrated that the sequence of events in stories about figures such as Noah and Abraham match the stories of Biblical or rabbinical texts, often retaining the sequence of events but anachronistically reflecting the perspective of the later Muslims. Here are examples of stories about Jesus, which bear a striking resemblance to some of the Quran’s stories from pre-existing texts.

Child Jesus Giving Clay Birds Life
Quran 3:49
"And (make him) a messenger to the Children of Israel (saying): I have come to you with a sign from your Lord, that I determine for you out of dust the form of a bird, then I breathe into it and it becomes a bird with Allah’s permission, and I heal the blind and the leprous, and bring the dead to life with Allah’s permission; and I inform you of what you should eat and what you should store in your houses. Surely there is a sign in this for you, if you are believers. "

Quran 5:110
“When Allah will say: O Jesus, son of Mary, remember My favour to thee and to thy mother, when I strengthened thee with the Holy Spirit; thou spokest to people in the cradle and in old age, and when I taught thee the Book and the Wisdom and the Torah and the Gospel, and when thou didst ***determine out of clay a thing like the form of a bird by My permission, then thou didst breathe into it and it became a bird ***by My permission; and thou didst heal the blind and the leprous by My permission; and when thou didst raise the dead by My permission; and when I withheld the Children of Israel from thee when thou camest to them with clear arguments – but those of them who disbelieved said: This is nothing but clear enchantment.”

Infancy Gospel of Thomas (First Greek Form, ca. 140-170 AD)
“This child Jesus, when five years old, was playing in the ford of a mountain stream; and He collected the flowing waters into pools, and made them clear immediately, and by a word alone He made them obey Him. And having made some soft clay, He fashioned out of it twelve sparrows. And it was the Sabbath when He did these things. And there were also many other children playing with Him. And a certain Jew, seeing what Jesus was doing, playing on the Sabbath, went off immediately, and said to his father Joseph: Behold, thy son is at the stream, and has taken clay, and made of it twelve birds, and has profaned the Sabbath. And Joseph, coming to the place and seeing, cried out to Him, saying: Wherefore doest thou on the Sabbath what it is not lawful to do? And Jesus clapped His hands, and cried out to the sparrows, and said to them: Off you go! And the sparrows flew, and went off crying. And the Jews seeing this were amazed, and went away and reported to their chief men what they had seen Jesus doing.”

Syriac Infancy Gospel (ca. 400 AD)
“And He had made figures of birds and sparrows, which flew when He told them to fly, and stood still when He told them to stand, and ate and drank when He handed them food and drink.”

Jesus Asks a Feast From Heaven // Bread of Life Discourse
Quran 5:112-115
‘Recall that the disciples said, “O Jesus, son of Mary, can your Lord send down to us a feast from the sky?” He said, “You should reverence GOD, if you are believers.” They said, “We wish to eat from it, and to reassure our hearts, and to know for sure that you have told us the truth. We will serve as witnesses thereof.” Said Jesus, the son of Mary, “Our god, our Lord, send down to us a feast from the sky. Let it bring plenty for each and every one of us, and a sign from You. Provide for us; You are the best Provider.” GOD said, “I am sending it down. Anyone among you who disbelieves after this, I will punish him as I never punished anyone else.”’

John 6:34-53
30 So they said to him, “What sign can you do, that we may see and believe in you? What can you do? 31 Our ancestors ate manna in the desert, as it is written: ‘He gave them bread from heaven to eat.’” 32 So Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, it was not Moses who gave the bread from heaven; my Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.” 34 So they said to him, “Sir, give us this bread always.” 35 Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me will never hunger, and whoever believes in me will never thirst. 36 But I told you that although you have seen [me], you do not believe. 37 Everything that the Father gives me will come to me, and I will not reject anyone who comes to me, 38 because I came down from heaven not to do my own will but the will of the one who sent me.s 39And this is the will of the one who sent me, that I should not lose anything of what he gave me, but that I should raise it [on] the last day. 40For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in him may have eternal life, and I shall raise him [on] the last day.” 41The Jews murmured about him because he said, “I am the bread that came down from heaven,” 42and they said, “Is this not Jesus, the son of Joseph? Do we not know his father and mother? Then how can he say, ‘I have come down from heaven’?” 43 Jesus answered and said to them, “Stop murmuring among yourselves. 44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draw him, and I will raise him on the last day. 45 It is written in the prophets: ‘They shall all be taught by God.’ Everyone who listens to my Father and learns from him comes to me. 46 Not that anyone has seen the Father except the one who is from God; he has seen the Father. 47 Amen, amen, I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. 48 I am the bread of life. 49Your ancestors ate the manna in the desert, but they died; 50 this is the bread that comes down from heaven so that one may eat it and not die. 51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven; whoever eats this bread will live forever; and the bread that I will give is my flesh for the life of the world.” 52 The Jews quarreled among themselves, saying, “How can this man give us [his] flesh to eat?” 53 Jesus said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you do not have life within you.

Note parallelisms here:
[LIST]
*]In both, the people around Jesus ask for food.
*]John 6: Jesus is the bread come down from heaven // Quran 5: “feast from heaven”
*]John 6: Not eating/drinking means no life within you // Quran 5: Not believing means punishment beyond previous punishment.
[/LIST]

These are all Gnostic stories which assume that Jesus performed miracles for his own entertainment. :shrug:

Jesus Did Not Die on Cross / Someone Else Died in His Place

*Quran 4:157-159 *
157. And because of their saying (in boast), “We killed Messiah 'Iesa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary), the Messenger of Allah,” - but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but the resemblance of 'Iesa (Jesus) was put over another man (and they killed that man), and those who differ therein are full of doubts. They have no (certain) knowledge, they follow nothing but conjecture. For surely; they killed him not * 158. But Allah raised him 'Iesa (Jesus)] up (with his body and soul) unto Himself (and he is in the heavens). And Allah is Ever All-Powerful, All-Wise. 159. And there is none of the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), but must believe in him 'Iesa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary), as only a Messenger of Allah and a human being], before his 'Iesa (Jesus) or a Jew’s or a Christian’s] death (at the time of the appearance of the angel of death). And on the Day of Resurrection, he 'Iesa (Jesus)] will be a witness against them.

Second Treatise of the Great Seth (ca. 190-230 AD)
“For Adonaios knows me because of hope. And I was in the mouths of lions. And the plan which they devised about me to release their Error and their senselessness - I did not succumb to them as they had planned. But I was not afflicted at all. Those who were there punished me. And I did not die in reality but in appearance, lest I be put to shame by them because these are my kinsfolk. I removed the shame from me and I did not become fainthearted in the face of what happened to me at their hands. I was about to succumb to fear, and I according to their sight and thought, in order that they may never find any word to speak about them. For my death, which they think happened, (happened) to them in their error and blindness, since they nailed their man unto their death. For their Ennoias did not see me, for they were deaf and blind. But in doing these things, they condemn themselves. Yes, they saw me; they punished me. It was another, their father, who drank the gall and the vinegar; it was not I. They struck me with the reed; it was another, Simon, who bore the cross on his shoulder. I was another upon Whom they placed the crown of thorns. But I was rejoicing in the height over all the wealth of the archons and the offspring of their error, of their empty glory. And I was laughing at their ignorance.”

And I subjected all their powers. For as I came downward, no one saw me. For I was altering my shapes, changing from form to form. And therefore, when I was at their gates, I assumed their likeness. For I passed them by quietly, and I was viewing the places, and I was not afraid nor ashamed, for I was undefiled. And I was speaking with them, mingling with them through those who are mine, and trampling on those who are harsh to them with zeal, and quenching the flame. And I was doing all these things because of my desire to accomplish what I desired by the will of the Father above.

And the Son of the Majesty, who was hidden in the regions below, we brought to the height where I in all these aeons with them, which (height) no one has seen nor known, where the wedding of the wedding robe is, the new one and not the old, nor does it perish.

The Quran draws on the history of Docetism, which was further developed in Gnostic writings. In this heresy, Jesus only appeared to have died on a cross (or lived in an earthly body, for that matter).*

I think that’s the point the OP is trying to make. The Jesus stories the Quran uses are things which had long been denounced as forgeries and false texts.

First was the Jews then from the Jews was the Christ and now we have Christians. The BC became AD. Islam takes the story and makes it something it’s not. History supports the Bible and the history in the Bible.

Of course Muslims will say the source is Allah. But I do not think the Muslims have permitted anything like the historical critical methods the Bible has gone through. I do not know of any who has dared… Any?

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