In Islamic Creed, there is a concept of second coming of Jesus. As per this, the Judgment day will not occur till Jesus will descend from the sky, dressed in skilled robes, east of Damascus. He will descend In the midst of an ongoing war between Muslims and Dajjal. He will end the war by killing Dajjal, rule as a King of the world for 40 years. These 40 years will be like heaven on earth. Everyone will leave a peaceful life, there will be no injustice, no suffering, there will be an ambiance of money and perpetual happiness. Muslims will be finally free from years and years of persecution and will get to rule the world with Jesus as their leader.
Many scholars have argued that belief in this is a mandatory belief in Islam, failing to do will lead for a person to commit Kufr. Any scholar who has argued against this has faced persecution by the Muslim, who either attacked him physically or verbally. Some examples can be found here and here.
If you analyze the crux of this belief there are two major problems with it
- Utopian Concept.
- Conflict with the First Coming
The problem with Utopia is that like a perfect circle it cannot exist in a material world. For example, my understanding of a perfect world may be drastically different from someone else’s understanding of a perfect world. A utopian society is seen as a concept and we as citizens of that society try to reach that perfect state by putting in our energy, by long discipline and perseverance, with a solid focus on the universal good. Without actually achieving it. There is a popular couplet by Hali which goes
Hai Justuju ke khoob se hai Khoob-tar kahan
ab dekhiye jaakar teherti hai nazar kahaan
( A long pursuit to find something better than the best, let’s see now where our eyes rest!)
Our eyes aren’t supposed to rest, and that’s the very point of envisioning a Utopian state. The problem with proposing a Utopian state as a reality is that it makes every other solution look imperfect. This, in the field of logic, is called Nirvana Fallacy.
Comparing a realistic solution with an idealized one, and dismissing or even discounting the realistic solution as a result of comparing to a “perfect world” or impossible standard. Ignoring the fact that improvements are often good enough reason.
We have seen that this has created issues in the Muslim world. Instead of working on a society which would promote peace and Justice and equality for all, instead of working on gathering knowledge and contributing to the society, Muslims have gone on an intellectual celibacy to wait for this peaceful time to come which will be brought by someone else.
The other problem with this is that this is Jesus’s second coming. This means that he has already had his first coming. Since Jesus is going to come and free Muslims up from their long years of persecution, logic dictates he must have done something similar in his first coming too.
Before Jesus came, a community, just like Muslims were waiting for his arrival. They too believed that he will establish peace in the world and lead them as a King. They were getting persecuted by a Westen power just like the Muslims are getting persecuted by a Western power. Not just that, even though you may find ample scholars disagreeing with the second coming of Jesus, this community didn’t have a single scholar who disagreed with his first coming.
The community I’m talking about is the Jewish Community and the western power they were under was the Roman Empire. The Jewish Community came under severe Roman persecution and was desperately waiting for their savior. A King whose forthcoming was prophesized by King David himself.
Even though the Jews are still waiting for their rightful King but since both Christians and Muslims believe that this King was Jesus we can derive few lessons from the past. Firstly, When Jesus came instead of arranging an army to defeat the Romans, as Jews were expecting, instead of helping them in the great Revolt which was occurring at the time of Jesus, he decided to focus his teaching and energy on correcting Jews themselves. Try to wrap your head around this for a second. Muslims are waiting for Jesus, the war with the Dajjal has started, Jesus ascends from the heaven, takes the mimbar and gets ready to deliver his
Try to wrap your head around this for a second. Muslims are waiting for Jesus, the war with the Dajjal has started, Jesus ascends from the heaven, takes the mimbar and gets ready to deliver his first sermon. Muslims are expecting a motivation war speech, Jesus is going to talk about Kuffar, how they have persecuted the Muslims, the beloved nation of God, instead Jesus says,
You Pharisees and teachers (read Mullahs) of the Law of Moses (read Qur’an) are in for trouble! You’re nothing but show-offs. You travel over land and sea to win one follower. And when you have done so, you make that person twice as fit for hell as you are. They pile heavy burdens on people’s shoulders and won’t lift a finger to help. Everything they do is just to show off in front of others. They even make a big show of wearing Scripture verses on their foreheads and arms, and they wear big tassels for everyone to see. They love the best seats at banquets and the front seats in the meeting places. And when they are in the market, they like to have people greet them as their teachers.You are in for trouble! You are supposed to lead others, but you are blind. You teach that it doesn’t matter if a person swears by the temple(read person kills an innocent soul). But you say that it does matter if someone swears by the gold in the temple(read Kufr). You blind fools! Which is greater, the gold or the temple that makes the gold sacred?
Imagine the state of all these people and these Scholars. What do you think they will do. When Jesus is going to tell them that this Utopia is going to be reached by first they clean themselves. We don’t know what Muslims are going to do, but I think it won’t be much different from what Jews did.
Jews declared Jesus a false Messiah. They then went on to create their own Jesus by following those people who promised to lead them against the Roman empire and bring in the promised Utopia. Some of them were Philo of Alexandria, Judas the Galilean, John of Giscala, Lukas and Shimon Bar Kokhba. All these great figures who filled Jewish eyes with dreams and aspirations were executed by Roman Authorities.
The tragedy was such that this dream continued till it eventually was destroyed at its core by the final destruction of the second temple by the Roman forces (read destruction of Kaaba) and then Israel was wiped off from the map completely.
The point is, this Utopian dream never became reality. Those false Prophets who claimed to make it a reality, who gave false dreams to the Jewish People, all died, horribly. Same thing happened in our time to people like Osama Bin Laden, Mullah Umar and it isn’t far fetch to predict the same fate for people like Baghdadi.
Many scholars claim that the narrations attributed to the Prophet about the second coming of Jesus aren’t true, plus the lack of support from Qur’an makes it really hard to say with surety that there is any coming back. Though, one thing is very clear, if Jesus does return for a second coming, he will be preaching the same thing which he preached in his first coming. Muslims who have derived the same expectations with him like Jews did, will meet with the same disappointment which Jews did. When Jesus is going to stand and declare that it’s not a persecution they are facing but rather, a punishment of God from the servants of God, in this case, the West. As God did in Qur’an Chapter 17
So when the [time of] promise came for the first of them, We sent against you servants of Ours – those of great military might, and they probed [even] into the homes, and it was a promise fulfilled…Then when the final promise came, [We sent your enemies] to sadden your faces and to enter the temple in Jerusalem, as they entered it the first time, and to destroy what they had taken over with [total] destruction.
What then do you think Muslims will do? What do you think Muslims do now when any scholar who claims that the problem is not in the west but within Muslims. That scholar gets persecuted, or gets scandalized, or gets isolated. When so far the Muslims have imitated Jews point by point it’s not far-fetched to assume that Jesus will meet the same fate in the hands of Muslims, which he did in the hands of Jews. That is, Crucifixion.