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Before I converted to the faith, I always believed Christians and Muslims didn't worship the same God, but as I was reading my Catechism it says we worship the same God 

841 The Church's relationship with the Muslims. "The plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator, in the first place amongst whom are the Muslims; these profess to hold the faith of Abraham, and together with us they adore the one, merciful God, mankind's judge on the last day."

So, we have always believed this correct? How is this read "in the light of Tradition"

God bless!
It's an incorrect statement. To read it in light of Tradition you have to burn Tradition for the light to read it.
Most trads have a problem with the new Catechism precisely because of that statement and others like it.

Personally, I feel that Jews, Catholics, and Muslims all worship the same God, but understand Him differently (and imperfectly in two of the three cases). But that is definitely a minority opinion on this forum, and among trads in general.
Frs. Rumble and Carthy state the mohammedans worship the same God in their Radio Replies series, as of 1938-?44? (not sure when that reply was made specifically), but state they render false worship.

The rationale is that because the mohammedans claim to worship the same God of Abraham, they worship the same God. However, that is incorrect. It is quite clear that the character profile of Allah is not that of God. They worship a god of their own making, which doesn't exist until Mohammed made him up.

There are multiple ways to look at it, but that statement in the Catechism is pulled from Nostra Aetate 3, and is based solely on a letter Pope St. Gregory VII wrote an a muslim king, an example of failed ecumenical efforts to secure for the Christians a safer life.

As mohammedanism is essentially a Christological heresy, they objectively worship Satan.
I think the statement is true from a traditional Catholic standpoint. I have not seen any sources saying they worship a false god, but I have seen them say they acknowledge the one God who can be known from reason and/or saying they are not idolators (idolators worship something other than God). Here's the philosophical reasons on why this is correct (I'm just reposting an old post of mine):

I think there should be noted a difference between worshipping God in Spirit and in truth, being in the grace of the Father or having Him, etc., and worshipping God according to the  virtue of religion (which is not a theological virtue, but falls under justice).

Another FE member posted a good definition of this virtue a while back:

"The Virtue of Religion is that virtue which inclines the human person to offer to God the worship due Him as the First Principle (or source) and Supreme Governor of all things" (Fr. Bruno Cocuzzi, OCD).

Can Muslims do this? They certainly worship "God" as  First Principle and Supreme Governor of all things, but is it the same God we know? Can one acknowledge the one God without acknowledging the Trinity?

First, it needs to be pointed out that faith is required to acknowledge the Trinity.  The Trinity cannot be reasoned out, as St. Vincent Ferrer explains:
St. Vincent Ferrer, Sermon for First Sunday in Advent, "A Christology from the Sermons of St. Vincent Ferrer of the Order of Preachers" Wrote:Concerning the use of the intelligence with regard to the Trinity, St. Thomas asks whether the Trinity of the Divine Persons can be known by natural reasoning. He answers: "It is impossible to attain to the knowledge of the Trinity by natural reason." For man can obtain the knowledge of God by natural reason only from creatures. Now creatures lead us to God as effects do to their cause. Accordingly, by natural reason we can know of God that only which of necessity belongs to him as the principle of all things. Now, the creative power of God is common to the whole Trinity; and hence it belongs to the unity of the essence, and not to the distinction of the Persons. Therefore by natural reason we can know what belongs to the unity of the essence, but not what belongs to the distinction of the Persons. Whoever, then, tries to prove the Trinity of Persons by natural reason, derogates from faith.

Therefore, we can know of God, as the Principle of all things, from reason alone, apart from faith, but we can only know of the Trinity with faith since it is a revealed dogma.  The First Vatican Council also defined that God can be known from natural reason alone and St. Paul says, on account of this, those who do not acknowledge God (but worship idols, are atheists, etc.) are without excuse (Rom. 1:20). 

Therefore, one can acknowledge the one God and Creator of all things without having faith and acknowledging the Trinity. But do Muslims do this?

How can we say whether or not we are talking about the same thing? It is the essence of the thing that determines what it is.  If we acknowledge the same essence, we acknowledge the same thing. What we can say about the essence of God is that it is the same as His existence, this summed up as "God is" or, in His own words, "I AM"  or "I AM who AM."  (Exo. 3:14)

This concept is formally referred to as the "aesity" of God. Essentially, aesity means self-existence. Aesity explains the metaphysical nature of God as a purely self-existent being that exists in complete actuality. God is not a being that is created by another god; neither does God create Himself into existence. Rather, God has always existed as an unchanging, completely actualized being. God has his Being of himself and to himself such that he is absolute being and the very definition of existence (Acts 17:22-28). Since God’s existence is the same as his essence it follows that God is existence. (NB: this not to assert pantheism. All other beings participate in his existence on a contingency and thus do not possess the essence of God. Therefore, no other being can be said to be a god or share a part in godhead since they exist solely on a contingency.) This concept is at the root of the definition of all of God’s other perfections because if God is absolute being he must logically contain in Himself all perfections of being.

Since God's essence is existence, if one conceives of His essence, one can only conceive of He who exists--it is impossible to conceive of a completely actualized being that is not the true God. Similarly, there cannot exist two of such beings, because then neither would contain in Himself all perfections of being. The Catholic Encyclopedia article on Essence and Existence gives the Thomist position on this:

-If essence and existence were but one thing, we should be unable to conceive the one without conceiving the other. But we are as a fact able to conceive of essence by itself.
-If there be no real distinction between the two, then the essence is identical with the existence. But in God alone are these identical.

In other words, when essence and existence are but one thing, we cannot conceive of one without conceiving of the other.  And this is the case only with God. Therefore, to conceive a being with aesity is to conceive of the one God who exists --it's impossible to conceive of something where essence and existence are identical, but that is not God.

Since Muslims do conceive of God as being completely self-actualized as far as I can tell (see here for example)--of being non-contingent--as having aesity, then they therefore can only be said to acknowledge the one God who exists and it is to Him that they honor as First Principle and Creator according to the virtue of religion.

I would say therefore that we know God; they know of God.  We worship Him in Spirit and in Truth and serve Him in supernatural faith, they worship only in a natural way--but they do adore Him, despite their other errors.
Thank you, SaintSebastian. That was informative.
(06-05-2013, 05:07 PM)SaintSebastian Wrote: [ -> ][...]
I would say therefore that we know God; they know of God.  We worship Him in Spirit and in Truth and serve Him in supernatural faith, they worship only in a natural way--but they do adore Him, despite their other errors.

I think that is right, and you gave a good explanation.  But it seems that worshiping God with a false understanding of who He is, and even doing so intentionally after the true understanding has been revealed is "in another sense" worshiping a false God, even if it is not blameworthy if there is invincible ignorance.  It seems a true understanding of God would not only include His aesity (I Am Who Am), but also what is revealed about Him - we can not fully comprehend His aesity, but must believe what He reveals.

None of the commandments require what is impossible, and if a Muslim or Jew are inculpably ignorant of the Church's right to command their belief, they are not guilty of breaking the first commandment, if they do worship God in a natural way.

God certainly hears all prayers from those who worship Him at least naturally.

Those are my thoughts.
according to surah 5 in the koran, even the mohams themselves do not believe that they worship our God - in fact, the very idea is about as "shirk" as it can get.
surah 9:5 gives another, chilling, insight into what they believe about those who believe in and/or worship the Blessed Trinity.
Quote:(2) But at any rate the Jews say that they, too, adore God. God forbid that I say that. No Jew adores God! Who say so? The Son of God say so. For he said: "If you were to know my Father, you would also know me. But you neither know me nor do you know my Father". Could I produce a witness more trustworthy than the Son of God?

(3) If, then, the Jews fail to know the Father, if they crucified the Son, if they thrust off the help of the Spirit, who should not make bold to declare plainly that the synagogue is a dwelling of demons? God is not worshipped there. Heaven forbid! From now on it remains a place of idolatry. But still some people pay it honor as a holy place.
- St. John Chrysostom,

Now, having established from St. John C. why the Jews do not worship (adore) God, let's break it down:

1) they do not believe in the Son of God, Christ; thus, they do not know or worship the Father.
2) because they do not worship the Son, thus the Father and Holy Ghost, they have no worship. It is a false-god they worship, thus committing idolatry.

What, then, do the muslims themselves declare, via Allah (satan)?
Quote:And to warn those who say, " Allah has taken a son." They have no knowledge of it, nor had their fathers. Grave is the word that comes out of their mouths; they speak not except a lie."
- Al-Kahf (the Cave), 18:4-5

Quote:O People of the Scripture, do not commit excess in your religion or say about Allah except the truth. The Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, was but a messenger of Allah and His word which He directed to Mary and a soul [created at a command] from Him. So believe in Allah and His messengers. And do not say, "Three"; desist - it is better for you. Indeed, Allah is but one God. Exalted is He above having a son. To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on the earth. And sufficient is Allah as Disposer of affairs.
Never would the Messiah disdain to be a servant of Allah , nor would the angels near [to Him]. And whoever disdains His worship and is arrogant - He will gather them to Himself all together.
An-Nisa, The Women, 4: 171-172

Quote:They have certainly disbelieved who say, " Allah is the Messiah, the son of Mary" while the Messiah has said, "O Children of Israel, worship Allah , my Lord and your Lord." Indeed, he who associates others with Allah - Allah has forbidden him Paradise, and his refuge is the Fire. And there are not for the wrongdoers any helpers. They have certainly disbelieved who say, " Allah is the third of three." And there is no god except one God. And if they do not desist from what they are saying, there will surely afflict the disbelievers among them a painful punishment.
Al-Ma'idah, the Table Spread, 5: 72-73

No muslim adores God! They commit idolatry. They engage in a syncretistic recipe of paganism, talmudism and heretical Christian beliefs (mixing tenets of Gnosticism, Arianism and Nestorianism).

This status quo of tickling the ears of muslims is, in effect, anti-Christ. Can the effect be larger than the cause? No, so the cause is anti-Christ.  Why do I say this?

1) There is no real plea for conversion, and each generation of muslims which passes is sending souls to hell with no chance to make a hard decision.

It's a perpetual dating period, sending flowers to the woman who wishes to make pâté from your dog's liver. Is there ever a moment of proposal? Letting each new generation pass without this is ineffectual and stunted. Expecting different results from substantially the same circumstances is insanity; such an approach is insane, illogical, and irrational-- in effect anti-Christ as He is the font of sanity, logic, and rationality: Truth.

2) Per the foundational confession of Islam, no "new" understanding can take place: there is not an ability to update or add to the "word" of "Allah" (and for our purposes we full acknowledge the basic Arabic understanding of the word Allah being merely a common noun for God in general, and used by Arabic-speaking Christians, but in islam specifically rendering understanding of the muslim god). All "revealed" by "Allah" is finalized in the Quran per the doctrine of Islam. In short, to effectively dialogue (the stated goal of this ecumenical language), one would need no other understanding of Islam than that which is historical (thus rendering moot Nostra Aetate and Lumen Gentium's portions regarding muslims). Ergo, we cannot forget the past as NA#3 states, lest we dialogue with those who do remember and through our forced historical amnesia are condemned to experience its reptition.

Further, because there is not a definitive, infallible--or believed so---authority in Islam for interpretation of the Quran and Islamic doctrine, or authority beyond the framework of the Hadith, rested on the foundation of Al-Quran, such dialogue is effectively individual in nature and not institutional. Thus, no dialogue outside of evangelization of persons need take place.

As the systemic model of Islam is juridically analogous to Protestantism of the more modern variety, being that Islam has, since the death of Mohammed, been split into competing schools of jurisprudence--often to the point of internal bloodshed--dialogue vis-a-vis evangelism must ipso facto be sought at a community level by priests and bishops, and competent laity, at most; preferably the approach should be based on individuals with sufficient charity present and steps taken in preparation of their potential martyrdom by family and members of their religious community. A "top down" approach is ineffective and injures the concept and application of subsidiarity. It must be understood that local imams are like independent Protestant ministers who are unbound to a conference or denominational confession; even if belonging to a school of jurisprudence, having much interpretive leeway, and while generally staying in the camp of Sunni or Shi'a, they vary wildly on much in the way of doctrine even from their own followers. This necessitates individual dialogue (read: evangelism), not institutional.

The first step is helping them realize they do not worship the same God.
St. John Chrysostom's statement made in his great zeal to defend the faith against the Jewish religion does seem to depart from the philosophical tradition of the Church in this regard, it seems (this tradition was no doubt less developed at his time).  If one cannot acknowledge God without professing the Trinity, then the canon from the First Vatican Council about the knowability of God is in error. 

As far as I know, Sts. Peter and Paul did not exhort the Jews to depart from idol worship for worshipping "I AM" (some may have gotten mixed up in some Roman idolatry during that time period, but those were different gods altogether). St. Paul also tells the Gentile idolators who also worshipped the one God aside their idols, that he was preaching to them the God they worshipped, but did not know ("know" being an affective knowledge in this case, rather than a speculative knowledge, which they had). (Acts. 17:23).

St. John Damascene, who lived and worked with Muslims, wrote a chapter on Islam in his Founts of Knowledge.  In it, he is just as zealous against their religion as St. Chrysostom was in the other quote, but he specifically says they used to be idolators, worshipping Aphrodite (Khabar) and the morning star, until Muhammed introduced what St. John calls a heresy.  When he describes that Muslims accuse Christians of being Hetaeriasts (Associators), St. John does not retort that they worship a false god or that they worship soemthing that doesn't exist, but that they mutilate the one God by denying His Son.

The Catholic Encyclopedia is a good yard-stick for the Church's belief at the turn of the last century.  In its article on infidels, it says the following:

'As in ecclesiastical language those who by baptism have received faith in Jesus Christ and have pledged Him their fidelity and called the faithful, so the name infidel is given to those who have not been baptized. The term applies not only to all who are ignorant of the true God, such as pagans of various kinds, but also to those who adore Him but do not recognize Jesus Christ, as Jews and Mohammedans."

Francicso Suarez, embodying the Thomistic tradition, also distinguishes them from idolators:

"Thomas, however, rightly distinguishes two kinds of religious practices: there are those which go against reason and against God insofar as he can be recognized through nature and through the natural powers of the soul, e.g., the worship of idols, etc. Others are contrary to the Christian religion and to its commands not because they are evil in themselves or contrary to reason as, for example, the practices of Jews and even many of the customs of Mohammedans and such unbelievers who believe in one true God."
Tract. de Fide Disp. 18 Sect. III

As does the Catechism of St. Pius X:

12 Q. Who are infidels?
A. Infidels are those who have not been baptised and do not believe in Jesus Christ, because they either believe in and worship false gods as idolaters do, or though admitting one true God, they do not believe in the Messiah, neither as already come in the Person of Jesus Christ, nor as to come; for instance, Mohammedans and the like.

I also don't think St. Gregory VII's letter can be brushed aside as an attempt to be PC--that wasn't his MO.
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