A photo capturing a group of Muslims gathered in a mosque, engrossed in a discussion about Jesus, showcasing their deep reverence and curiosity towards his role in Islam.

What Do Muslims Believe About Jesus?

Jesus, or Isa in Arabic, holds an important place in Islam as one of God’s most revered prophets. If you’re wondering what Muslims believe about Jesus, this comprehensive guide will walk you through the key details.

If you’re short on time, here’s a quick answer: Muslims view Jesus as an honorable prophet of God, but do not share the Christian belief that he is the son of God or divine himself. Muslims believe Jesus was a human who was given a holy scripture, performed miracles by the will of God, was born of the virgin Mary, but is not Himself God nor the son of God.

Jesus in Islamic Scripture and Tradition

Jesus in the Quran

Jesus, known as Isa in Arabic, is considered one of the most important prophets in Islam. He is mentioned over 150 times in the Quran and is often referred to as “Isa ibn Maryam” (Jesus son of Mary). Some key beliefs about Jesus in Islam based on the Quran are:

  • Jesus was born of the virgin Mary and is one of the most honored prophets in Islam.
  • God sent the angel Gabriel to announce to Mary that she would give birth to Jesus.
  • Jesus performed many miracles by the will of God, including healing the sick, raising the dead and speaking as an infant.
  • Jesus was not the biological son of God, but he was sent as a messenger of God.
  • Jesus did not die on the cross nor was he crucified. God raised him up to heaven.
  • On the Day of Judgment, Jesus will return to earth and defeat the Antichrist.

As evidenced in the Quran, Jesus has a very significant role in Islam. However, there are differences between Islamic beliefs about Jesus and the beliefs of Christians. The Quran explicitly denies crucifixion and death of Jesus, which contradicts the crucifixion story in the Bible.

Muslims also do not believe Jesus to be the son of God. In Islam, he is a highly revered prophet and messenger.

Jesus in the Hadith (Sayings of Muhammad)

In addition to the Quran, Jesus is also mentioned in the hadith, which are the collections of sayings, actions and traditions of Prophet Muhammad. Some significant points about Jesus in the hadith are:

  • Jesus will return to the earth again before the Day of Judgment to restore justice and defeat al-Masih ad-Dajjal (“the false messiah” or Antichrist).
  • Jesus will follow the Quran and teachings of Prophet Muhammad when he returns.
  • On the Day of Judgment, Jesus will bear witness that Islam is the true religion.
  • Jesus will perform the Islamic ritual pilgrimage Hajj and worship Allah according to the Islamic way.
  • Jesus is mentioned to be one of the prophets who has no fear of the Antichrist’s trials and schemes.
  • Jesus, Muhammad and Moses will be the closest in fellowship on the Day of Resurrection.

The overall depiction of Jesus in the hadith reinforces Islamic beliefs about him that are established in the Quran. The hadith highlight that Jesus was one of the greatest prophets who submitted to the one true God. When Jesus returns, he will adhere to Islam and its practices.

Similarities Differences
Jesus born of a virgin Jesus’s divinity
Jesus performed miracles Jesus’s crucifixion and death
Jesus was a messenger of God Jesus will return before the Day of Judgment

This comparison shows that while Jesus has a significant role in both Christianity and Islam, there are also clear differences between the two faiths’ beliefs about him. The nature of Jesus – his divinity, crucifixion and resurrection – is a major point of divergence.

Key Events and Teachings in Jesus’s Life

Virgin Birth

Muslims believe Mary (Maryam) was a virgin when she gave birth to Jesus, which is a miracle showing Allah’s power. The Quran states that the angel Gabriel came to Mary, announcing she would give birth to a holy son named Jesus (Quran 19:16-22).

Muslims believe Jesus’s virgin birth demonstrates Allah can do anything. This affirms the Islamic view of Jesus as a major prophet and messenger of God, but not divine himself.

Miracles Performed

The Quran speaks of several miracles performed by Jesus, including giving sight to the blind, healing lepers, raising the dead, and knowing what people had just eaten and what they stored in their houses (Quran 3:49).

Muslims see these as clear signs that Jesus was a prophet of God, not that he was divine. The difference is Muslims believe these miracles were done through God’s power, to carry out God’s will, while in Christianity some see the miracles as proof of Jesus’ own divinity.

Ascension Into Heaven

Muslims believe that after his time on earth, Jesus was raised bodily to heaven by God (Quran 4:158). This miraculous ascension proved Allah’s power over death. Muslims also believe Jesus will return to earth before the Day of Judgment.

At that time, Jesus will defeat the Antichrist, then live for a period, marry, have children, and die a natural death. This affirms he was only human, not divine. In contrast, Christians teach Jesus rose from the dead, appeared to his disciples, then ascended into heaven, and remains alive today.

Jesus’s Place Among the Prophets

Jesus holds a central position in Islam as one of God’s most important prophets. Although Muslims do not believe Jesus is the Son of God or divine himself, they greatly revere him and believe God sent him with an important message for humankind.

Here are some key points about how Muslims regard Jesus:

Jesus is one of the most important prophets in Islam

The Quran names Jesus as one of the greatest and most righteous prophets of God. He is called ‘Isa ibn Maryam’ meaning ‘Jesus, son of Mary’. The Quran describes Jesus speaking from the cradle as a baby, creating birds of clay, curing the blind and lepers, and raising the dead.

Muslims do not accept Jesus was crucified but believe God raised him up to heaven and he will return near the Day of Judgment.

Muslims believe Jesus was a messenger sent by God

Jesus is considered one of the five greatest prophets, along with Noah, Abraham, Moses and Muhammad. In Islam, prophets were extraordinary individuals sent by God to various communities to spread the message about worshipping one God and living a righteous life.

Muslims believe the prophets all brought fundamentally the same message, but tailored to the times they lived in. Jesus brought an important, divine message from God to humanity centered on moral uprightness.

Jesus performed miracles by God’s permission

The Quran discusses several miracles performed with God’s permission by Jesus, including bringing clay birds to life, healing lepers, restoring sight to the blind, and raising the dead. These miracles were done to win the faith of skeptics in his community.

However, while the Quran affirms these miracles, Muslims believe these supernatural acts could only occur through the will and power granted by God, not independently through Jesus himself.

Muslims refute that Jesus claimed divinity

One big difference between Christianity and Islam is that Muslims firmly reject that Jesus ever claimed to be divine or the ‘Son of God’. The Quran reprimands notions that God Himself came to Earth or that God has any offspring.

Muslims believe Jesus was only a divinely inspired human prophet exalted by God, not God himself or the son of God. Any direct or indirect claim to divine status is believed to be a later embellishment.

Jesus is not part of the Islamic Trinity concept

The Christian doctrine of the Trinity states that God is Three-in-One: Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Islam rejects this, saying God is Only One and has no offspring or intermediaries sharing divinity. The Quran explicitly states “God does not beget, nor is He begotten”.

Jesus is in no way considered part of the Islamic concept of God or divine in any form.

Comparisons and Contrasts With the Christian View

Sonship and Divinity

Muslims have fundamental differences with Christians regarding the divine nature and sonship of Jesus. Christians believe that Jesus is the begotten Son of God and shares in the divine nature, being fully human and fully divine.

However, in Islam, Jesus is considered one of the greatest prophets but purely human, not divine. The Quran explicitly denies that Jesus is the son of God or shares in God’s divinity (Quran 9:30). Muslims see this as blasphemy and an attack on the undivided Oneness of God.

The Quran acknowledges Jesus’ virgin birth and calls him Messiah, but adamantly denies he is the Son of God. It emphasizes that God has no partners or offspring (Quran 112:1-4). However, Jesus is given titles of honor, including Prophet, Messenger, Messiah, Word, and Spirit from God.

But in Islam, prophets do not share in God’s essence and are only highly honored servants.

Crucifixion and Atonement

A major theological difference is about the crucifixion. Christians believe Jesus was crucified and died for the sins of humanity, resurrecting afterward. His death is vitally important as an atonement sacrifice.

However, the Quran claims that Jesus was not actually crucified and did not experience death (Quran 4:157-158). Most Muslims believe that Allah made someone else look like Jesus and this impostor was crucified in his place. Therefore, in Islam, Jesus did not atone for human sin.

The idea that God needs a sacrifice or blood atonement is strongly rejected. Muslims see human redemption and salvation being based on God’s gracious forgiveness, not requiring a divine savior or sacrifice. People are responsible for their own lives and sins.


While Islam and Christianity differ considerably in their theological positions on Jesus’s divine status and the events of his life and death, they share a deep veneration for him as one of God’s greatest prophets.

Both traditions value his teachings and find much common ground in principles like social justice, compassion, and living a purpose-driven life devoted to God.

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