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PARACLETE AND PERIKLUTOS

The controversy on the word for Comforter/Advocate used in the Bible, John 14 & 16, for the Holy Spirit. While the Greek manuscripts have paraclete, paracletos, meaning "one who comes along side", Muslims believe that the word is periklutos, meaning "Praised One", which in Arabic is Ahmad, which Muslims take to be Muhammad. There is a direct reference to "Ahmad" in the Quran, surah as-Saff 61:6, and so Muslims find periklutos appealing because then a prophecy of Muhammad can be deduced from the Bible.

The problem, however, is that there is not a shred of evidence in support of this theory, and the thousands of NT manuscripts predating Islam all do not have periklutos. Christians and all extant manuscripts have all confirmed that the word is paraclete as it stands. Early testimonies of Muslims testify that the Bible's paraclete is correct, see AHMAD

* The quotes from the Bible concerning the Paraclete:

"And I will pray the Father, and he will give you another Comforter, to be with you for ever, even the Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him; you know him, for he dwells with you, and will be in you". (John 14:16-17)

"But the Comforter, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you". (John 14:26)

"But when the Comforter comes, whom I shall send you from the Father, even the Spirit of Truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness to me". (John 15:26)

"Nevertheless I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Comforter will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you". (John 16:7)

In fact, the context of the verses also do not support periklutos, as shown below. If Comforter refers to Muhammad, then we also have to accept
  1. that Muhammad is the Holy Spirit in John 14:26, contradicting Muslim belief that the Holy Spirit is the angel Gabriel,
  2. that Jesus sends Muhammad in (John 15:26 and 16:7) and
  3. that Jesus sends Muhammad in Jesus' name,
  4. that Muhammad dwells with the disciples forever. (John 14:16-17). Not only is Muhammad too late by 600 years, he can't dwell with them forever. The argument that the truth, law given by Muhammad will be with them forever is spurious of course, since they never receive it.
  5. that the disciples of Jesus know Muhammad. (John 14:16-17).
all of which are unthinkable to a Muslim. If it is periklutos, then this passage must also mean a previous "praised one", and one has no clue as to who this previous "praised one" was. Jesus was never given such a title, indeed no person in the Qur'an was. Further, the literal meaning will be that "He will give you another Ahmad".

* Some Muslims have argued that because the Bible uses the pronoun "he" when used with "Comforter" and "it" when use with "Holy Spirit", therefore, these two are not the same:

''XXX makes the point that when Jesus speaks of a "Comforter," he uses the pronoun "he," but when John the Baptist speaks of seeing the Holy Spirit descending on Jesus, he uses the pronoun "it." But "Comforter" translates the Greek PARAKLETOS, which is a masculine noun, and therefore takes a masculine pronoun, while "Spirit" translates the Greek PNEUMA, which is neuter, and therefore takes a neuter pronoun. The gender of a noun in English normally reflects the sex (or lack of it) of what the noun refers to (with a few exceptions, such as that ships and other vehicles, and bells, and countries, are commonly called "she"). But this is not true in some other languages. In German, for example, the words WEIB (woman) and FRAEULEIN and MAEDCHEN (unmarried woman, young girl) are all neuter, and take neuter adjectives and neuter pronouns. In my first Latin class, the teacher asked for a translation of "The sword is sharp; I have it," and got the answer, "Gladius acer est; id habeo." She said, "That's wrong," to the bafflement of the class, who could not see an error in it. Finally she asked, "What gender is 'gladius'?" At this point, someone said, "Aha! it should be 'EUM habeo' -- 'I have HIM'." And this was right. GLADIUS, being masculine, takes the masculine pronoun.
Accordingly, no conclusion can be drawn from the fact that Jesus, (or at any rate his Greek translator), using the word PARAKLETOS, uses a masculine pronoun, or that John the Baptist, using the word PNEUMA, uses a neuter pronoun.'' (James Kiefer)


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