Here again we find the composite nature of the Religion of Islam manifesting itself very clearly.
Perhaps Muhammad hoped to gain both Jews and Christians over to his creed in this way, the former
being more likely to accept Christ as a great but purely human prophet if not charged with the
murder of their Messiah: and the Christians would, Muhammad trusted, be ready to rid themselves of
what he regarded as blasphemous and irrational accretions to their original faith. Nothing but the
most profound ignorance of the Bible and of the true nature of Christianity can account for the fact
that Muhammad evidently believed the Virgin to be one of the Persons1 in the Holy
Trinity. Had he, during his early years of earnestness in seeking for the truth, been brought into
contact with a nobler creed than the debased parody of Christianity then exhibited in the Eastern
world, Muhammad might, by GOD'S Providence, have been known to us, not as a false Prophet and an
Antichrist, but as an earnest and successful preacher of that Gospel of Christ which is "the
power2 of GOD unto salvation to every one that believeth."
§ 10. The Religion of Zoroaster again has left its mark upon Islam, owing to the not
inconsiderable numbers of ideas which Muhammad borrowed.