Kites: A staple of Bermudians’ Easter celebrations, but Muslims do not celebrate the holiday as they reject the Christian concept of salvation and Jesus’ crucifixion. *File photo
Kites: A staple of Bermudians’ Easter celebrations, but Muslims do not celebrate the holiday as they reject the Christian concept of salvation and Jesus’ crucifixion. *File photo

Spring is in the air for sure, though some days or even parts of the day in Bermuda could leave us wondering.

But indeed, time is marching on and winter is behind us — it’s hard to believe that next Friday will be Good Friday.

Yes Good Friday. What thoughts does that conjure up in your mind? 

Some, such as self-appointed food connoisseurs like me, immediately think of fish cakes and hot cross buns.

Although I don’t celebrate Easter I do eat the yummy stuff that comes along with the celebration.

Some may think of kites and kite flying, whilst others think of sleeping the entire day. Others, like my dear Granny Stubbs, think of church. 

I think of Jumah, because every Friday, just after noon, Muslims meet to hear the Khutbah given by the Iman.

The Khutbah is supposed to be a reminder of the obligations for Muslims, to help them live their lives in a moral and ethical manner, and of the good news that comes to them from God.

Salvation

After the Khutbah we perform our congregational prayer known as Jumah. 

Muslims in no way, shape or form celebrate Easter. We do not adhere to the tenets of Easter.

Easter has evolved from many ancient pagan religious observances. One of the most popular theories is that Easter came from the name of the goddess of fertility Ishtar.

Many modern Easter practices, both secular and religious — such as eating hot cross buns (oops), symbols of rabbits and eggs, Easter lilies, sunrise services and Easter candles, all have origins in the worship of Ishtar in the season of the Spring Equinox.

Ishtar is said to be Queen Semiramis, the wife of Nimrud, great-grandson of Prophet Noah.

Nimrod — whose name means ‘the rebel’ according to the Bible and other sources, was a powerful tyrant who did not believe in God.

He is said to have been head of an occult mystery religion, and a founder of many great, but corrupt cities like Babel and Nineveh.

Nimrod seems like a person whom we should never uphold.

Muslims, like Christians, regard Jesus as a saviour, but not through self-sacrifice. No one can suffer your consequences but you.

Islam rejects the Christian concept of salvation.

Muslims believe that all prophets lived sinless lives and hence this is why they were chosen by Allah, Almighty to bring His message to the people.

The prophets were used by God to be messengers and not to divinely save people.

Only God is the Saviour, and through His mercy sends us persons from among us to whom we can relate to, who demonstrate and teach us how to live a good life via their example and the delivery of God’s guidance and message.

Only God can forgive sins. Salvation is in essence an event between a person and God. He or she tries to live a sinless and ideal life following God’s guidance, which he has given us because of His Love and Mercy for us, His Creation with forgiveness.

No one is guaranteed salvation by claiming a certain set of beliefs, but people’s actions, beliefs and intentions will all be weighed with both Justice and Mercy, but the only judge is God.

This may seem as a shocker to most, but according to the Qur’an and other Islamic sources, Jesus was not crucified and did not die for anyone’s sins. He has not died yet, and was raised alive and will return.

Indeed we all agree that Jesus is alive and returning, as well as many other magnificent aspects of Jesus, such as the Immaculate Conception surrounding his birth and the many miracles he performed. 

However, the primary differences between Muslims and Christians about our dearly beloved Jesus are only in his divinity and his death.

But these differences contribute to very different conclusions about how we are forgiven and granted salvation.

All the prophets, we can agree, delivered one universal message which instructs mankind about the knowledge and worship of God; distinguishing truth from falsehood and right from wrong. 

Muslims consider the ‘Gospel’ or good news that Jesus delivered to be mankind’s saving grace. Only this belief will bring us God’s forgiveness and Mercy.

Have a safe holiday Bermuda. Ameen.