As Salam Aleikhum my brotherers in Islam,
the quran says with proof and truth that 'Isa was sent to the cross for crucifiction not crucified witch is true it was made to appear that the jews killed him but they killled him not is also true.God said to 'Isa in quran I will cause you to die and raise you up to me is true.
Why do the majority of my brothers in Islam think someone took the place of 'Isa instead of him when the quran clearly says no such thing it was only made to appear meaning 'Isa went to the cross and miraculously have become unconscious meaning his soul could have been taken out for a brief moment by God and then he was brought down from the cross remember he gave the sign of Jonah where he would be placed in the tomb for 3 days then be raised by God. This is in the quran what do the scholars say. He is definitely alive as we all know it and he will come now to rule.
Clarify the truth fo me your brother in Islam jazakhum Allahu kairan.

  • I don't know why you would pick an answer that is so wrong.
    – The Z
    Commented Mar 5, 2018 at 20:46

4 Answers 4


Some evidences from the qur'an and first conclusions

First let me post some evidences from the Qur'an and the first conclusions one could make as a layman, based on logic and the understanding of the Arabic text without further interpretation (feel free to refer to other verses you might consider as relevant):

And [for] their saying, "Indeed, we have killed the Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, the messenger of Allah ." And they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but [another] was made to resemble him to them. And indeed, those who differ over it are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge of it except the following of assumption. And they did not kill him, for certain. (4:157)
Rather, Allah raised him to Himself. And ever is Allah Exalted in Might and Wise. (4:158)


[Mention] when Allah said, "O Jesus, indeed I will take you and raise you to Myself and purify you from those who disbelieve and make those who follow you [in submission to Allah alone] superior to those who disbelieve until the Day of Resurrection. .... (3:55)

  • The Qur'an here clearly says that they (the Jews/his pursuer's/enemies) didn't kill 'Isa ().
  • The Qur'an also clearly says they (the Jews/his pursuer's/enemies) have not crucified 'Isa ().
  • The Qur'an says that they (the Jews/his pursuer's/enemies) taught or had the -false- impression that they have actually crucified and killed him. Note that the "[another]" in the above translation is already an interpretation of the verse, which is somewhat open in the Arabic text and needs further evidences (either from the Qur'an or sunnah). But logic says if we assume that the Jews killed a person then it must be an other who resembled 'Isa ().
  • The Qur'an also makes clear that all those pretending that they've killed or crucified 'Isa () are in doubt or uncertainty about whether they actually did or not.
  • Further Allah says that he raised him to Himself.
  • On the interpretation of (3:55) let me refer you to Surat Al `Imran 3/55 about the death of Jesus(puh) there are also other verses such as (5:117) where it says that 'Isa () is (which seems more correct according the tense in the verse) or will be dead, which might not yet have been addressed on the site. And also (19:33) addressing the death of Jesus, but this verse can hardly be used as an evidence for his actual state (dead/alive/is his soul alive etc.)
  • The Qur'an also says that 'Isa will return before the day of Judgement: Evidence for the return of Jesus from the Quran
  • Allah () as mentioned in the comment of @Uma actually promised to hinder bani Israel from killing him in (5:110).

So the Qur'an doesn't clearly say that 'Isa was sent to the cross, this could be a valid or possible interpretation but based on the verse above it would only have the level of an assumption. It even looks more likely that somebody else has been taken, by fault or due to his resemblance instead of 'Isa, which also at this stage is a valid assumption. To move from assumption and doubt to a clearer more evidenced view we need to consult some tafsir books.

Deeper look into tafsir

Actually tafsir books seem to confirm my statements from above there's no clear quote in the Qur'an whether 'Isa went to the cross or not, there's no clear consensus on the meaning of (شبه لهم) which in the translation above has been interpreted as

"but [another] was made to resemble him to them"

while qtafsir uses the translation:

"but it appeared as that to them"

which sounds more in-line with the Arabic original. Ibn Kathir in his tafsir quotes without quoting a source a story of the last Super and what happened later based (see for example in qtafsir and the posted statement from islamqa #103515)

there is a saheeh report from Ibn ‘Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him) that the Messiah (peace be upon him) said to those of his companions who were with him in the house: “Which of you will be made to look like me and be killed in my stead, and he will be with me in the same level as me (in Paradise)?” A young man who was one of the youngest of them stood up, and he said to him: “Sit down.” Then he repeated it and that young man stood up again, and he said: “Sit down.” Then he repeated it again and that young man stood up and said, “I (will do it).” He said: “You are the one.” So he was caused to look like ‘Eesa and ‘Eesa was lifted up from a window in the house to heaven. Ibn Katheer (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in his Tafseer (4/337),

this narration supports the view that one of 'Isa's companions has been made look like him and was crucified and killed instead of 'Isa (). And is quoted in tafsir ibn abi Hatim as hadith [6233] (with a full chain).

Ibn 'Ashur in his tafsir called at-tahrir wa-tanwir التحرير والتنوير discusses the meaning as follows (I will try to translate it the best I can):

وجملة ( ولكن شبه لهم ) استدراك ، والمستدرك هو ما أفاده ( وما قتلوه ) من كون هذا القول لا شبهة فيه . وأنه اختلاق محض ، فبين بالاستدراك أن أصل ظنهم أنهم قتلوه أنهم توهموا أنهم قتلوه ، وهي شبهة أوهمت اليهود أنهم قتلوا المسيح ، وهي ما رأوه ظاهرا من وقوع قتل وصلب على ذات يعتقدونها ذات المسيح .

The sentence (but it appeared as that to them) is a correction of something reviewed which is based on (And they did not kill him) which is a statement which excludes any doubt or uncertainty. And therefore it is a clear fabrication, the correction shows that they firstly where of the opinion that they had killed him, before they fancied having killed him. This is the suspicion which made the Jews think they have killed the Messiah. This is what they actually witnessed on a being they taught was the Messiah.

وقوله ( شبه لهم ) يحتمل أن يكون معناه : أن اليهود الذين زعموا قتلهم المسيح في زمانهم قد شبه لهم مشبه بالمسيح فقتلوه ، ونجى الله المسيح من إهانة القتل ، فيكون قوله ( شبه ) فعلا مبنيا للمجهول ، ... . والاستدراك بين على هذا الاحتمال .

The statement (but it appeared as that to them) may have the meaning: that the Jews who pretended having killed the Messiah at their time have found a person who appeared to look like 'Isa and they killed him, while 'Isa stayed safe from the offense of being killed. In that case the verb شبه is in passive voice ... and the correction supports this assumption.

ويحتمل أن يكون المعنى ولكن شبه لليهود الأولين والآخرين خبر صلب المسيح ، أي اشتبه عليهم الكذب بالصدق ، ... . وليس ثمة شبيه بعيسى ولكن الكذب في خبره شبيه بالصدق ،... ، أي أن كبراءهم اختلقوه لهم ليبردوا غليلهم من الحنق على عيسى إذ جاء بإبطال ضلالاتهم . ... ، أي صنع الأحبار هذا الخبر لأجل إدخال الشبهة على عامتهم .

It is also possible that the meaning is that the information or report of the crucifixion of the Messiah has been in suspicion for both the earlier and later Jews, so that they have mixed between truth and lie. ... . While there was actually no look alike of 'Isa, but the lie of his report is seemingly close to the truth (true story). This means that their leaders have created this (lie) for them to satisfy and calm their anger on 'Isa who came to show them off as they went astray or the Rabbi's did so to spread this suspicion (or lie) between the ordinary people.

Ibn 'Ashur added that it was mentioned that Yehoda al-Iskaryoti يهوذا الاسخريوطي Judas Iscariot has gone astray and was a hypocrite who has betrayed 'Isa was the person whom was made look alike to him. This has a source in the Gospel of Barnabas إنجيل برنابي (According ibn 'Ashur this Barnabas or Barnaby -as he calls him- was a Student of the companions of 'Isa). Uma also pointed me to a similar claim which can be found in tafsir at-Tabari after quoting many -mostly- Christian stories about how and whom was made look alike to 'Isa (my own Translation take it with the necessary care):

وبعض النصارى يزعم أن يودس زكريا يوطا هو الذي شبه لهم ، فصلبوه وهو يقول : "إني لست بصاحبكم! أنا الذي دللتكم عليه"!

Some Christians pretend that Judas Zakaria Yota (this is just a Transliteration from Arabic) was the one who has been made look alike (to 'Isa), then they crucified him, while he was saying (shouting): I'm not your companion (the one you have been looking for)! I'm the one who guided you to him (to where he or whom he was).

It was also said that Pilate بيلاطس when asked about the killing and crucifixion of 'Isa answered that he has no knowledge about the story. This might be an evidence that people were uncertain about the truth of the story and goes ahead with the second possibility.

Ibn 'Ashur concludes:

والذي يجب اعتقاده بنص القرآن : أن المسيح لم يقتل ، ولا صلب ، وأن الله رفعه إليه ونجاه من طالبيه ، وأما ما عدا ذلك فالأمر فيه محتمل .

And what one should believe in is according the text of the Qur'an is that the Messiah was neither killed nor crucified but Allah has raised him to Himself and saved him from those who were pursuing him. And anything else is a matter of thinkable probable

  • 2
    Also relevant: وإذ كففت بني إسرائيل عنك "when I restrained the Children of Israel from you" 5:110, although it could be debatable, but the apparent meaning is that he didn't fall into their power at all.
    – UmH
    Commented Mar 2, 2018 at 10:17

The Muslim notion that someone else was crucified instead of 'Īssa ﷺ (Jesus) and that he did not go to the cross at all is mostly based on an athar that Ibn Abu Hātim ar-Rāzi attributed to 'Abdullah ibn 'Abbās — through Ahmad ibn Sannān through Abu Mu'āwiya through Al-A'mash through Al-Minhāl ibn 'Amr through Sa'īd ibn Jubair — which Ibn Kathir documented in his tafsīr (partially quoted below):

لما أراد الله أن يرفع عيسى إلى السماء، خرج على أصحابه - وفي البيت اثنا عشر رجلا من الحواريين - يعني: فخرج عليهم من عين في البيت، ورأسه يقطر ماء، فقال: إن منكم من يكفر بي اثنتي عشرة مرة، بعد أن آمن بي. ثم قال: أيكم يلقى عليه شبهي، فيقتل مكاني ويكون معي في درجتي؟ فقام شاب من أحدثهم سنا، فقال له: اجلس. ثم أعاد عليهم فقام ذلك الشاب، فقال: اجلس. ثم أعاد عليهم فقام الشاب فقال: أنا. فقال: أنت هو ذاك. فألقي عليه شبه عيسى ورفع عيسى من روزنة في البيت إلى السماء. وجاء الطلب من اليهود فأخذوا الشبه فقتلوه

NOTE: My own translation, so treat with care:

When Allah willed to raise 'Īssa ﷺ to Himself, 'Īssa ﷺ went to his companions — there were twelve of them in the house at the time — from the center of the house, with his hair dripping water, and said: "There will be among you who will deny me 12 times after he believed in me." Then he asked: "Who among you will take my look and be killed in my place and be with me in the same level in Heaven?" The youngest among them stood up and said he would. 'Īssa ﷺ ordered him to sit down, then he repeated the same question. Their youngest repeated the offer. 'Īssa ﷺ ordered him to sit down, then he repeated the same question the third time. Their youngest repeated the offer. 'Īssa ﷺ said: "Let it be you." The youngest then turned to look like 'Īssa, and 'Īssa ﷺ ascended to Heaven through an opening in the ceiling of the house. The convoy of Jews then came to take him ['Īssa ﷺ] and took the one [their youngest] that looked like him and killed him.

—  Al-Bidāya wa an-Nihāya, Vol. 2, pp. 509-510

Ibn Kathīr, in his book Al-Bidāya wa an-Nihāya and in his tafsīr, then commented that the chain of narration of this athar is authentic and fulfills the conditions of Sahih Muslim. However, the stronger opinion is that this athar is weak. The opinion that says this athar is weak is based on the memorization of Al-Minhāl ibn 'Amr, that there is not a single hadith that Muslim ibn al-Hajjaj documented in his Sahih through Al-Minhāl, and that both Yahya ibn Ma'īn and Adh-Dhahabi had reasons to weaken narrations that came from Al-A'mash through Al-Minhāl ibn 'Amr. Irrespective of the authenticity of the athar, as this is not the topic of the question, it is this athar that is quoted most of the time when the question arises as to who was crucified in place of 'Īssa ﷺ (Jesus).

  • You wrote, " both Yahya ibn Ma'īn and Adh-Dhahabi had reasons to weaken narrations that came from Al-A'mash through Al-Minhāl ibn 'Amr." WHAT IS THE SOURCE OF THIS INFORMATION???? CAN YOU PLEASE CITE YOUR SOURCES???
    – Ren
    Commented Aug 28, 2020 at 14:47

I believe that the Holy Quran and the New Testament don't disagree but rather show different view points on the same event. I will start with the Quran, because it will make more sense to you.

'(Remember) when Allah said: "Isa, I cause thee to die, and raise thee up to Me, and I will rid thee of those who disbelieved, and make those who follow thee above those who disbelieved until the resurrection day. Then, ye return to Me, and I judge between you in what you disagreed about it."' - Surah 3:55

According to Surah 3:55 Allah said that He would cause Isa al-Masih to die, and then would raise Isa al-Masih to Himself.

'And [for] their boasting, "Indeed, we have killed the [so-called] Messiah, Isa, Ibn Maryam, the [self-proclaimed] messenger of Allah." But they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but [another] was made to resemble him to them. And indeed, those who differ over it are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge of it except the following of assumption. And they did not kill him, for certain. Rather, Allah raised him to Himself. And ever is Allah Exalted in Might and Wise.' - Surah 4:157-158

Did the Holy Quran say, "He was not killed, nor he was crucified."? No, the Holy Quran say, "[the Jews] did not kill Isa al-Masih, nor did they crucify him"?

According to the Fourfold Gospel, who caused Isa al-Masih's death? It wasn't the Jews, it was Allah who used Pilate to kill Isa al-Masih but only because Allah planned it, before His word was made flesh.

'Then Pilate therefore took Jesus, and flogged him. And the soldiers platted a crown of thorns, and put it on his head, and they put on him a purple robe, and said, "Hail, King of the Jews!" and they beat him with their hands. Pilate therefore went forth again, and saith unto them(the Jews), "Behold, I bring him forth to you, that ye may know that I find no fault in him." Then came Jesus forth, wearing the crown of thorns, and the purple robe. And Pilate saith unto them, "Behold the man!" When the chief priests therefore and officers saw him, they cried out, saying, "Crucify him, crucify him." Pilate saith unto them, "Take ye him, and crucify him: for I find no fault in him." The Jews answered him, "We have a law, and by our law he ought to die, because he made himself the Son of God." When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he was the more afraid; and went again into the judgment hall, and saith unto Jesus, "Whence art thou?" But Jesus gave him no answer. Then saith Pilate unto him, "Speakest thou not unto me? knowest thou not that I have power to crucify thee, and have power to release thee?" Jesus answered, "Thou couldest have no power at all against me, except it were given thee from Allah: therefore he(Judas) that delivered me unto thee hath the greater sin." And from thenceforth Pilate sought to release him: but the Jews cried out, saying, "If thou let this man go, thou art not Caesar's friend: whosoever maketh himself a king speaketh against Caesar." When Pilate therefore heard that saying, he brought Jesus forth, and sat down in the judgment seat in a place that is called the Pavement, but in the Hebrew, Gabbatha. And it was the preparation of the passover, and about the sixth hour: and he saith unto the Jews, "Behold your King!" But they cried out, Away with him, away with him, crucify him. Pilate saith unto them, "Shall I crucify your King?" The chief priests answered, "We have no king but Caesar." Then delivered he him therefore unto them to be crucified. And they took Jesus, and led him away. And he bearing his cross went forth into a place called the place of a skull, which is called in the Hebrew Golgotha: Where they crucified him, and two other with him, on either side one, and Jesus in the midst. And Pilate wrote a title, and put it on the cross. And the writing was "Jesus of Nazareth, The King of The Jews". This title then read many of the Jews: for the place where Jesus was crucified was nigh to the city: and it was written in Hebrew, and Greek, and Latin. Then said the chief priests of the Jews to Pilate, "Write not, The King of the Jews; but that he said, I am King of the Jews." Pilate answered, "What I have written I have written." Then the soldiers, when they had crucified Jesus, took his garments, and made four parts, to every soldier a part; and also his coat: now the coat was without seam, woven from the top throughout. They said therefore among themselves, "Let us not rend it, but cast lots for it, whose it shall be": that the scripture might be fulfilled, which saith, They parted my raiment among them, and for my vesture they did cast lots. These things therefore the soldiers did.' - John 19:1-12

Also Isa al-Masih cryptically told Judas to turn him over to the Jews, who turned him over to Pilate.

Matthew 26:49-50 and Luke 22:47-49:

'And forthwith he came to Jesus, and said, "Hail, master;" and kissed him. And Jesus said unto him, "Friend, wherefore art thou come?" Then came they, and laid hands on Jesus, and took him, at which time he said unto Judas,"Thou turnest over the son of man with a kiss"'

Note that while the Gospel of Nicodemus is not in the Bible, It is a 2 tier source, which is similar to the Deuterocanonical Books of the Roman Catholic Bible, it is a valid source for extra information on the trial of Isa.

'Then the governor [Pilate] again commanded the Jews to depart out of the hall; and calling Jesus, said to him, "What shall I do with thee?" Jesus answered him, "Do according as it is written." Pilate said to him, "How is it written?" Jesus saith to him, "Moses and the prophets have prophesied concerning my suffering and resurrection."' - Gospel of Nicodemus 4:8-11

Pilate killed because A) He didn't want to cause undo stress to Caesar by triggering a rebellion and thus lose his job. And B) Isa told Pilate to just get it over with, to which Pilate finally did as Isa said, and killed him, but Pilate by declaring Isa the King of the Jews, he saying to the Jews, I killed Isa because of what he told me to do, not because you want me to.

I end my case.

  • Did Pilate do it out of his personal reasons or at the insistence of the Jews? If it was the latter then the Jews were responsible and it would be wrong to say that they certainly did not kill\crucify.
    – UmH
    Commented Mar 14, 2020 at 6:00
  • @UmH I updated my answer, but the reason was bigger than the Jews, reason I didn't add to my answer was that if Pilate freed Isa, and Isa started a rebellion, then Pilate would lose his job and possible his life, but if he killed Isa, there wouldn't be a rebellion to worry about. Commented Mar 14, 2020 at 10:17

From a religious perspective, the Quran states:

They declared: ‘We have killed the Christ , Jesus son of Mary, the apostle of God.‘ They did not kill him, nor did they crucify him, but they thought they did. Those that disagreed about him were in doubt concerning him; they knew nothing about him that was not sheer conjecture; they did not slay him for certain. (4:157)

This is God stating that the Romans and Caiaphus and his followers were made to believe that they crucified Christ, but they did not, in reality. However there is a minor contradiction, which is subject to debate by Muslims across the world. Look at this verse:

Peace be on me on the day I was born and on the day of my death and on the day I shall be raised to life." (19:33)

This verse seems to support the Christian theme of resurrection:

As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. “Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. (Mark 16:5 - 6)

He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee: ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ (Luke 24:6 - 7)

It may be argued that the Quran conveys that Jesus did die, but the word did not:

Mahmoud M. Ayoub : "The Quran, as we have already argued, does not deny the death of Christ. Rather, it challenges human beings who in their folly have deluded themselves into believing that they would vanquish the divine Word, Jesus Christ the Messenger of God. The death of Jesus is asserted several times and in various contexts."

There is also a possibility of interpreting the Quran in a different way:

They declared: ‘We have killed the Christ , Jesus son of Mary, the apostle of God.‘ They did not kill him, nor did they crucify him, but they thought they did. Those that disagreed about him were in doubt concerning him; they knew nothing about him that was not sheer conjecture; they did not slay him for certain. (4:157)

Some interpret it as Allah's message that Christ did die, but it was not the Jews and the Romans who killed him; hence the repeated use and reiteration of the stark differences between God, and "they". It is, as your question asks, possible to understand that it WAS made to appear to the Romans that Christ died:

But when they came to Jesus and found that he was already dead, they did not break his legs. Instead, one of the soldiers pierced Jesus’ side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water. The man who saw it has given testimony, and his testimony is true. He knows that he tells the truth, and he testifies so that you also may believe (John 19:33-35)

Here, Roman soldiers are testing whether the Christ has died or not: and he evidently has. But this is perfectly compatible with the Quran, because they only think they have killed him. Which is why the idea of a resurrection after which Jesus was raised to heaven,

So then the Lord Jesus, after he had spoken to them, was taken up into heaven and sat down at the right hand of God. And they went out and preached everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the message by accompanying signs. (Mark 16:19-20)

is not incompatible with Islam:

Lo! God said: "O Jesus! Verily, I shall cause you to die, and shall exalt you unto Me, and cleanse thee of [the presence of] those who are bent on denying the truth; and I shall place those who follow you [far] above those who are bent on denying the truth, unto the Day of Resurrection. In the end, unto Me you all must return, and I shall judge between you with regard to all on which you were wont to differ. (3:55)

Thank you...

  • 1
    Note the parallel between 19:33 and 19:15 which says the same about Yahya (John the Baptist).
    – UmH
    Commented Mar 2, 2018 at 13:28
  • 3
    This seems too much like a way to snake around the literal meaning. How many times does Allah need to say "They did not kill him" before you believe it? Also, what translation are you using that says "I shall cause you to die"?
    – The Z
    Commented Mar 2, 2018 at 23:46
  • @TheZ Muhammad Asad, the very best. Commented Mar 4, 2018 at 11:38
  • @theliberalmuslim . I've looked into it, but the word Mutawaffeek does not mean to cause you to die. It means more 'to take/recieve'.
    – The Z
    Commented Mar 4, 2018 at 16:49
  • I believe it's clear that when God raises someone to himself, that person is dead. Commented Mar 4, 2018 at 21:37

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