God: Triunity or Tritheism

Both Islam and Christianity are monotheistic – meaning that they both believe that there is only one God. However, Muslims have difficulty understanding the Christian concept of the Trinity, and their concept of our Triune god is erroneous.

The Trinity is foundational to the Christian faith. This doctrine of the Trinity states that God is a single being who exists simultaneously and eternally as three distinct persons, the Father, the Son, and Holy Spirit. In other words, the Trinity is a belief that the Godhead is not three different people but rather three different conditions of the same person. 

Islam dismisses the Christian belief in the Trinity as tritheism or a belief in three distinct gods. Muslims believe Christians worship Jesus, the Messiah, his mother Mary, and Allah (Arabic for god). The Qur’an states,” They are unbelievers who say ‘God is the Third of Three’. No god is there but the One God” (sura 5:73, Arberry). 

This passage goes on to explain that because Jesus and Mary both ate food to sustain themselves, they cannot possibly be gods like Allah. “The Messiah, son of Mary, was only a Messenger; Messengers before him passed away; his mother was a just woman; they both ate food. Behold, how We make clear the signs to them; then behold, how they perverted are!” (sura 5:75, Arberry).

The idea that Mary was considered divine by Christians and part of the Holy Trinity may result from the excessive veneration given to her by an early Christian heretical sect in Arabia known as the Collyridians, who considered Mary a goddess and offered cakes to worship her. Regardless of the source, Muhammad’s limited and defective knowledge of the Christian doctrine of the Trinity led him to mistakenly believe in a tritheism of Jesus, Mary, and Allah. Because of this mistake, the Christian belief in the Trinity is considered blasphemy in Islam. 

The Triune God of Christianity is demonstrated throughout the Bible, for instance, in the activity of redemption. The Father planned it; the Son obtained it (Ephesians 1:4-9); and the Spirit applies it. (2 Thessalonians 2:13).


For a Muslim, Jesus is a prophet of Islam, pointing to their final prophet, Muhammad. To believe that Jesus Christ is God is “shirk;”it is blasphemy. Because of this, ask the Lord to draw them to Himself and help them overcome this fear of believing in Him and receive the revelation that Jesus is Lord and is the Son of God.

The Basis of Faith

Both Christianity and Islam have foundational texts. For Christians, it is the Bible; for Muslims, it is primarily the Qur’an. 

Christians believe that God gave the Bible through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to more than forty authors. These authors wrote over an almost 1600-year period from three continents in three languages. Despite being written by different authors, the Bible does not contradict itself, and external texts are not necessary to practice Christianity.

The words of the Bible have been well preserved. Israel’s religious leaders created a system to ensure the accuracy of copies of the Old Testament through meticulous proofreading techniques. The Dead Sea Scrolls, discovered between the years of 1947 and 1956, are in substantial agreement with the Old Testament throughout the generations proving that the text has been preserved and kept the same. The accuracy of the New Testament is proven through dated copies and writings of the Church fathers. In fact, these writings contain over 38,000 quotations from the New Testament, making it possible to reconstruct the entire New Testament minus 11 verses.

In Islam, the Qur’an is considered to be the actual words of Allah dictated to Muhammad through the angel Gabriel over a 23-year period. Muhammad recited these words to his followers and instructed them to write them down on various materials such as palm leaves, bones, and stones. The words were assembled into the Qur’an after Muhammad’s death. This resulted in different versions of the Qur’an. The differences sometimes slightly affected the meaning but did not change the basic ideas of the Qur’an. Almost twenty years after Muhammad’s death, Caliph Uthman established a committee to produce an official version of the Qur’an.

The Qur’an’s chapters (or suras) are not in chronological order but are organized by length, starting with the longest, except for the opening chapter. It consists of 114 suras which read like an Arabic poem. Although the Qur’an has been translated into many languages, Muslims are encouraged to read and recite the Qur’an in Arabic, its original language. The Qur’an is also divided into thirty equal parts so that Muslims can read a portion each day during Ramadan.

The Qur’an states around ninety times that Muhammad is the perfect Muslim, so in order to properly practice Islam, a Muslim must worship Allah as Muhammad worshipped him, which is why external texts (the hadith and sira) are a vital part of Islam. The hadith are reports of Muhammad’s teachings, deeds, and sayings compiled generations after his death. As the Islamic website “whyislam” explains that without the hadith, the Qur’an does not make sense. The sıra is the biography of Muhammad. Together the hadith and sira make up the sunna (Muhammad’s way of life and legal precedent). If all a Muslim possessed was a Qur’an, he could not practice his religion.


  • By reading the Bible, we read words that bring God’s life into our hearts and understanding, bringing joy and peace. For Muslims, reading the Quran, which is more of a “duty,” does not bring hope and joy to their lives. Pray that during Ramadan, Muslims will be curious to see what is in the Bible, the true Word of God, and be drawn to read its life-changing message.

Christians: Be Prepared

According to Open Doors 2023, World Watch List, more than 360 million Christians around the world suffer high levels of persecution and discrimination for their faith. 5,621 Christians (approximately 15 per day) were killed last year for their faith. 89% of those killed were in Nigeria as Islamic jihadi groups, such as Boko Haram and the Islamic State West Africa Province (ISWAP), attempt to eliminate the presence of Christianity in the nation. 

Since Open Doors began their World Watch List thirty years ago, the number of countries where Christians suffer persecution has almost doubled. Although we tend to think of Christian persecution as overt acts of violence or discrimination against Christians, persecution can include hostile words and actions, and increasingly Christians, even in Western nations, are experiencing persecution. 

1 Peter 3:8-22 speaks of Christian persecution and instructs believers on how to respond. “…Do not fear their threats; do not be frightened. But in your hearts, revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.” (I Peter 3:14-15).

Peter directed believers to have a deep personal relationship with Christ and to be able to respectfully explain their faith clearly to others. Being “ready to give an answer” is a natural response to being in a close, loving relationship with God. We naturally defend those that we love because we know them intimately. In order to be prepared, we need to first study and meditate on God’s Word and develop a strong prayer life. 

Our relationship with God, however, goes much deeper than an emotional response. Our faith is based on truth – and the crux of that truth is the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ. It’s these core truths where Christianity and Islam differ, and as we go through the next few weeks, we will be looking at those truths so that you may be able to better direct your prayers and be prepared to give an answer for the hope that you have.

Why pray for Christians during Ramadan? Because the lifestyle of Christians is one of the top reasons Muslims come to know Christ. Other reasons include the spiritual truth that is contained in the Bible and Biblical teachings about the love of God. Pray for Christians to draw closer to God and develop a deep personal relationship with Him so that their lives reflect Christ in all that they do. Pray that Muslims will see the difference in the lives of Christians and be drawn to the Truth.

Finally, rejoice that God is answering prayer. Open Doors reports that persecution lessened in nations like Qatar (falling 16 places in the World Watch List) and Egypt (falling 15 places) in 2022. Other smaller drops in persecution occurred in Somalia, Libya, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Oman, and Jordan. 


  • A primary reason there is the persecution of Christians by Muslims is (1) they have never met a faithful Christian to influence their lives, and (2) they are taught to “kill the infidel.” Ask our Lord to open their eyes to hatred and to see that true followers of Christ want to be their friend.
  • More Muslims have come to Christ in the last 15 years than combined in the previous 1400 years of Islam. Pray they will have a longing for spiritual things and have dreams and visions of the Lord Jesus, bringing them to salvation.  

Pray With Us

Ramadan, the holiest month in Islam, begins today, March 22. Muslims believe that it was during the month of Ramadan when Muhammad first began to receive his revelations. Best Current News has produced a prayer series for Christians corresponding to the Islamic month of Ramadan for over ten years.

Because Islam is called one of the three “Abrahamic faiths” along with Judaism and Christianity, many Christians do not realize that the Abraham of the Bible is radically different from the Abraham in the Muslim faith. Statistics from the Pew Research Center reveal that 65% of Christians believe that many religions can lead to eternal life – breaking down the report further, 77% of Catholics, 82% of Mainline Protestants, and 47% of Evangelicals believe that at least one other religion (not denomination) can lead to eternal life. Interestingly, 56% of Muslims believe many religions can lead to eternal life.

During Ramadan, most Muslims will observe a fast from sunup to sundown. The fast is broken at sunset with a meal called Iftar. It is to be a time of spiritual reflection and increased devotion to Allah, and Muslims believe the rewards for fasting during this time are multiplied. Muslims are to abstain from smoking, drinking, eating, and sexual pleasure during daylight hours.

In addition to fasting, Muslims also increase their prayers during Ramadan, especially during the last ten days, which are considered the most blessed. It is regarded as a time of spiritual reflection and renewal for Muslims.

We are certainly not the first or largest Christian group that produces a prayer guide for Ramadan; however, our approach is unique. In addition to encouraging our readers to pray for Muslims, we often ask that our readers pray for themselves and their fellow Christians during this time.

Depending on which church you attend, there is a good chance that many of those sitting around you no longer believe Jesus’ words in John 14:6, “…I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

So, as we begin this Ramadan season, we ask that you pray for Muslims and also your fellow Christians. 

  • Pray their hearts will be softened and they come to an understanding of, and most importantly, an encounter with “THE TRUTH,” Jesus Christ the Son of God.
  • That as the eyes of the Church are open to Truth, they will be bold and uncompromising in their witness to our Muslim neighbors.