by Robert A. Morey
© 1996 Research and Education Foundation
Christians must be prepared to answer the typical
objections made against the Gospel. Most of the
objections are based on simple logical fallacies. The
following is a list of some of the most common fallacies
used by Muslims.
Note: The average Muslim does not know that his
arguments are logically erroneous. He is sincere in his
beliefs. Thus you must be patient and kind in sharing
with him why his arguments are invalid.
1. The Fallacy of False Assumptions: In logic as well
as in law, "historical precedent" means that
the burden of proof rests on those who set forth new
theories and not on those whose ideas have already been
verified. The old tests the new. The already established
authority judges any new claims to authority.
Since Islam came along many centuries after
Christianity, Islam has the burden of proof and
not Christianity. The Bible tests and judges the
Qur'an. When the Bible and The Qur'an contradict
each other, the Bible must logically be given
first place as the older authority. The Qur'an is
in error until it proves itself.
Some Muslims violate the principle of historical
precedent by asserting that Islam does not have
the burden of proof and that the Qur'an judges
2. Arguing in a circle: If you have already assumed in
your premise what you are going to state in your
conclusion, then you have ended where you began and
If you end where you began, you
- Proving Allah by the Qur'an and then proving
the Qur'an by Allah.
- Proving Muhammad by the Qur'an and then
proving the Qur'an by Muhammad.
- Proving Islam by the Qur'an and then proving
the Qur'an by Islam.
3. False Analogy: Comparing two things as if they
are parallel when they are not really the same at
- Many Muslims erroneously assume that Muslims
and Christians share the same concepts of God,
revelation, inspiration, textual preservation,
the Bible, prophethood, biblical history,
- Because a false analogy is drawn between Islam
and Christianity, some Muslims think that any
argument which refutes the Qur'an will likewise
refute the Bible; any argument which refutes
Muhammad will also refute Jesus Christ, etc...
- For example, many Muslims claim that Muhammad
and all prophets were sinless. They even deny
that Abraham was an idol worshipper. Thus when a
Christian points out all the wicked things that
Muhammad did (mass murder, child abuse, lying,
etc.), the Muslims will say, "If you are
right, then you must also reject your biblical
prophets for doing wicked things as well."
What he is really saying is, "If you reject
my prophet, then you must reject your prophets as
well. If Muhammad was a false prophet, then your
prophets are false as well."
The root problem is that the Muslim concept of
prophethood is not the same as the Christian
concept of prophethood. We teach that prophets
sin like anyone else. Thus while Islam is refuted
by the sins of Muhammad, Christianity is not
jeopardized at all. The Muslim is guilty of
setting up a "false analogy."
Whenever a Muslim responds to a Christian attack
on the Qur'an, Muhammad, or Allah by flipping the
argument around and applying it to the Bible,
Jesus or the Trinity as if Islam and Christianity
either stand or fall together, he is guilty of
the fallacy of false analogy. Islam can be false
and Christianity be true at the same time.
4. The Fallacy of Irrelevance: When you introduce
issues which have no logical bearing on the
subject under discussion, you are using
- Some Muslims argue, "The Qur'an is the
Word of God because the text of the Qur'an has
been preserved perfectly." This argument is
erroneous for two reasons:
When Muslims attack the character and motives
of anyone who criticizes Islam, they are using
irrelevant arguments. The character of someone is
no indication of whether he is telling you the
truth. Good people can lie and evil people can
tell the truth. Thus whenever a Muslim uses slurs
such as "mean," "dishonest,"
"deceptive," etc., he is not only
committing a logical fallacy but also revealing
that he cannot intellectually defend his beliefs.
When confronted with the pagan origins of the
Qur'an, some Muslims defend the Qur'an by
answering, "So what! Didn't you Christians
get Christmas from the pagans?"
- Factually, the text of the Qur'an has not been
preserved perfectly. The text has additions,
deletions, conflicting manuscripts, and variant
readings like any other ancient writing.
- Logically, it is irrelevant whether the text
of the Qur'an has been preserved because
preservation does not logically imply
inspiration. A book can be perfectly copied
without implying its inspiration.
This argument is erroneous for several reasons.
Some Muslims argue that the Qur'an is the Word
of God because it contains some historically or
scientifically accurate statements. This argument
is irrelevant. Just because a book is correct on
some historical or scientific point does not mean
it is inspired. You cannot take the attributes of
a part and apply it to the whole. A book can be a
mixture of true and false statements. Thus it is
a logical fallacy to argue that the entire Qur'an
is true if it makes one true statement.
When a Muslim argues that history or science
"proves" the Qur'an, this actually
means that he is acknowledging that history and
science can likewise refute the Qur'an. If the
Qur'an contains just one historical error or one
scientific error, then the Qur'an is not the Word
of God. Verification and falsification go hand in
The present meaning of a word is irrelevant to
what it meant in ancient times. The word
"Allah" is a good example. When
confronted by the historical evidence that the
word was used by pagan Arabs in pre-Islamic times
to refer to a high god who was married to the
sun-goddess and had three daughters, some Muslims
will quote dictionaries, encyclopedias, etc. to
prove (sic) that "Allah means God."
They are thus using modern definitions to define
what the word meant over a thousand years ago!
What "Allah" means now has no bearing
on what it meant before Muhammad.
- It is a false analogy to parallel the pagan
origins of the rites commanded in the Qur'an with
the present day holidays nowhere commanded in the
Bible. What some modern day Christians do on Dec.
25th has no logical bearing on what the Qur'an
commands Muslims to do (eg. the Pilgrimage, the
- It is irrelevant that some Christians choose
to celebrate the birth of Christ. Since the Bible
nowhere commands it, it is a matter of personal
freedom. But Muslims are commanded in the Qur'an
to believe and practice many things which came
from the paganism of that day.
- The Muslim by using this argument is actually
admitting that the Qur'an was not "sent
down" but fabricated from pagan sources.
This means he has become an unbeliever (Surah
5. The Fallacy of Equivocation: If we assume that
everyone has the same definition of such words as
God, Jesus, revelation, inspiration, prophet,
miracle, etc., we are committing a very simple
- When a Muslim says, "Christians and
Muslims worship the same God," he is
committing the fallacy of equivocation. While
Christians worship the Triune God of Father, Son,
and Holy Spirit, Muslims worship a Unitarian
deity. Obviously, they are worshipping different
- When a Muslim says, "We believe in Jesus
too," he is committing the fallacy of
equivocation. The "Jesus" of the Qur'an
is not the Jesus of the Bible. Islam preaches
"another Jesus" (II Cor. 11:4). The
Jesus of the Bible is God the Son who died on the
cross for our sins. But the "Jesus" of
the Qur'an is not God the Son and he did not die
on the cross for our sins. Thus it is erroneous
for Muslims to tell Christians that they believe
in Jesus, too.
- When a Muslim assumes that Christians have the
same concept of revelation as Muslims, he is
guilty of the fallacy of equivocation. According
to Islam, the Qur'an was written in heaven by
Allah and has no earthly sources. When we prove
that it comes from earthly sources, this
threatens the inspiration of the Qur'an. On the other hand, the Bible does not claim that
it dropped out of heaven one day. It openly
quotes from earthly sources. It uses pre-existing
sources without any difficulty whatsoever, thus
while the Qur'an is threatened by historical
sources, the Bible is actually confirmed by them.
- When a Muslim tells you that the word
"Allah" has only one meaning: "the
one, true, universal God," he is assuming a
fallacy. The word "allah" has many
- It can be used as a generic term like the
English word "God." Thus it can be
applied to any god or goddess regardless if a
true or false god is in view. (ex. The
"Allahs" of Hinduism.)
- The Nation of Islam uses it to refer to
Wallace Dodd Ford, Elijah Muhammad, and Louis
Farrakhan as "Allah" and teaches that
all black people are "Allahs."
- It has been used by some Christians in Arabic
speaking countries as a generic name for the Holy
- It was used in pre-Islamic times by pagan
Arabs to refer to the moon-god who was the father
of al-Lat, al-Uzza and Manat.
- It is used by Muslims to refer to their god.
Islam and Christianity do not worship the same
God. The Christian worships the Holy Trinity
while the Muslim worships a unitarian deity.
6. The Fallacy of Force: The Qur'an commands Muslims
to wage war against non-Muslims and apostates (Surah
5:33; 9:5, 29).
Some Muslims use a false analogy to answer this
argument. They respond by saying, "Well,
what about the Crusades? You Christians use
violence just like Muslims."
It is logically erroneous to set up a parallel
between Muslims killing people in obedience to
the Qur'an and Christians killing people in
disobedience to the Bible. While the Qur'an
commands Jihad, the New Testament forbids it.
7. The Fallacy Of Confusing Questions of Fact with
Questions of Relevance: Whether something is factually
true is totally different from the issue of whether you
feel it is relevant. The two issues must be kept
- When a Christian argues that some of the
beliefs and rituals of the Qur'an came from
pre-Islamic Arab paganism, the Muslim will deny
it at first. But as more and more evidence is
given, the Muslim will often do a flip-flop and
begin arguing, "So what! Didn't you
Christians get Christmas from the pagans?"
The Muslim has now committed three fallacies:
- The "So what!" argument is dealing
with the issue of relevance, not fact. You must
stop the Muslim at that point and ask him,
"Since you are now dealing with the issue of
whether the pagan origins of the Qur'an are
relevant, does this mean that you are now
agreeing to the fact of the pagan origins of
- The Muslim has also committed the fallacy of
equivocation, The Bible is not threatened by
historical sources. It freely refers to them and
even quotes them (Acts 17: 28). But the Qur'an
denies that it has any earthly historical sources
- He also committed the fallacy of false
analogy. The Bible and the Qur'an are two totally
different books. The inspiration of the Bible
does not depend upon the fate of the Qur'an
because what Muslims claim for the Qur'an is not
what Christians claim for the Bible.
8. Phonic Fallacies: The phonetic sound of a word
should not be used to twist its meaning. For example,
- Some Muslims try to prove that the word
"Allah" is in the Greek New Testament
because of the Greek word alla. But while the
word is pronounced "alla," it only
means "but" in Greek. It has nothing to
do with the Arabic "Allah."
- Some Muslims have claimed that the word
"Allah" is in the Bible because the
Biblical word "Allelujah." They then
mispronounce the word as "Allah-lujah"
But "Allelujah" is not a compound
Arabic word with "Allah" being the
first part of the word. It is a Hebrew word with
the name of God being "JAH" (or Yahweh)
and the verb "alle" meaning
"praise to." It means "praise to
Yahweh." The Arabic word "Allah"
is not in the word.
- The same error is found in the Muslim argument
that the word "Baca" (Psa. 84:6) really
means "Mecca." The valley of Baca is in
- Some Muslims have tried to go from
"Amen" to "Ahmed" to
"Mohammed!" Such nonsense is beyond
9. "Red Herring" Arguments: When a Muslim is
asked to defend the Qur'an, if he turns around and
attacks the reliability of the Bible, the Trinity, the
deity of Christ, the Crusades, etc., he is introducing
irrelevant issues that have no logical bearing on the
truthfulness of Islam. He is trying to divert attention
from Islam to other issues.
Furthermore, he is assuming that if he can refute
the Bible, then the Qur'an wins by default. If he
can refute the Trinity, then Allah wins by
default. But this is logically erroneous. You
cannot prove your position by refuting someone
else's position. The Bible and the Qur'an could
both be wrong. Muslims must prove their own book.
10. Straw Man Arguments: When you put a false
argument into the mouth of your opponent and then
proceed to knock it down, you have only created a
"straw man" argument, Muslims sometimes
either misunderstand or deliberately misquote the
arguments Christians give them.
Some Muslims have built a "straw man"
argument that claims that we teach, "The
Qur'an teaches that Allah is the Moon-god and
that Muslims knowingly believe in and worship the
Moon-god and his daughters." They then knock
down this "straw man" argument and
claim victory. Of course, we never said such
nonsense. What we have said is that while the
Qur'an claims that Allah is God and Muslims think
they are worshipping the one true God, in reality
they are worshipping a false god preached by a
false prophet according to a false book.
The average Muslim has been deceived by Muslim
apologists who use such logical fallacies without regard
to reason, fact or honesty. But there are many Muslims
who want to be rational in their religion and thus have
an open mind to rational discourse. Once they see that
their arguments are based on logical fallacies, they will
be open to the wonderful news that Jesus Christ is the
Son of God who died for our sins on the cross.