Answered by: Shaykh Ahmed bin Mohamed Umarji
One Islamic preacher is an expert in comparative religions. I usually watch his videos and really like it as many people converted to Islam by watching his videos and asking him questions etc. In one video, he was explaining to a Christian. One of the things he said is that if I say or you say we follow the commandments of God then we are called children of God. A very innocent statement, no problem.
The link is below of that video: ( from 2:24 minutes onwards)
1. Is it permissible to say we are children of God (nauzobillah) in the sense that we follow the commandments of Allah Ta’ala?
2. Also is it permissible to say by a Muslim that Is more Christian than Christians in regard to following Jesus alaihis sallam?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Answer to the first question:
The Quran tells us about the previous nations who also uttered the statement “we are children of God”
وقَالَتِ الْيَهُودُ والنصارى نَحْنُ أَبْنَاءُ اللَّـهِ وَأَحِبَّاؤُهُ
But the Jews and the Christians say, “We are the children of Allah and His beloved.”
Allah Ta’ala then tells them, if your claim is true
ۚ قُلْ فَلِمَ يُعَذِّبُكُم بِذُنُوبِكُم ۖ بَلْ أَنتُم بَشَرٌ مِّمَّنْ خَلَقَ ۚ
Say, “Then why does He punish you for your sins?” Rather, you are human beings from among those He has created.1
Allah Ta’ala reminded them, that you are not the children of Allah, rather you are human beings whom Allah Ta’ala created. Thus, it is not appropriate for one to refer to themselves as being the children of God. As believers, we should strive to avoid doing those things for which other nations we reprimanded. We should rather consider ourselves to be the servants of God, as Allah Ta’ala refers to us as his servants.
يَا عِبَادِ فَاتَّقُونِ2
O My servants, then fear Me.
Answer to the second question:
It would be appropriate to say that we are closer to Isa A.S. than the Christians based on the statement of The Prophet P.B.U.H rather than saying we are more Christians than Christians themselves.
حَدَّثَنَا أَبُو مَعْمَرٍ ، حَدَّثَنَا عَبْدُ الوَارِثِ ، حَدَّثَنَا أَيُّوبُ ، حَدَّثَنَا عَبْدُ اللَّهِ بْنُ سَعِيدِ بْنِ جُبَيْرٍ ، عَنْ أَبِيهِ ، عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ رَضِيَ اللَّهُ عَنْهُمَا ، قَالَ : قَدِمَ النَّبِيُّ صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ المَدِينَةَ فَرَأَى اليَهُودَ تَصُومُ يَوْمَ عَاشُورَاءَ ، فَقَالَ : مَا هَذَا ؟ ، قَالُوا : هَذَا يَوْمٌ صَالِحٌ هَذَا يَوْمٌ نَجَّى اللَّهُ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ مِنْ عَدُوِّهِمْ ، فَصَامَهُ مُوسَى ، قَالَ : فَأَنَا أَحَقُّ بِمُوسَى مِنْكُمْ ، فَصَامَهُ ، وَأَمَرَ بِصِيَامِهِ3
Narrated Ibn `Abbas: The Prophet (ﷺ) came to Medina and saw the Jews fasting on the Day of Ashura. He asked them about that. They replied this is a good day, the day on which Allah rescued Bani Israel from their enemy. So, Moses fasted this day. The Prophet (ﷺ) said We have more claim over Moses than you. So, the Prophet fasted on that day and ordered (the Muslims) to fast (on that day).
Only Allah knows best
Written by Shaykh Ahmed bin Mohamed Umarji
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham
1 The Quran, Surah Madiah-5, Verse 18
2 The Quran, Surah Zumar-39, Verse 16
3 Sahih al-Bukhari, Hadith 1921