bismillah ar rahmnir rahim
@ Andrew Brown:
I know where you are coming from. At one point I thought as you do. There is some logical flaws with what you are saying though. First, of all, the Bible was not readily available as it is now. If you know about Christianity then you know that at the point in question the Bible was limited to the church and was only available in Latin as that was the language that they preferred up in Rome. Are you claiming that an illiterate man was able to read the Bible? That is funny. Or are you trying to say that he heard the stories of the Bible and managed to memorize them and repeat them? That is quite a feat. There was very few that had the kind of knowledge you are trying to credit the prophet with.
If you want to speak about using your mind you must understand that there is more to it than just looking at the two books. Not only must you look at the Bible and the Qur'an but you must also think of the time period and know the history of what was going on at the time in order to understand it all. What you are trying to claim is so common it has been used since the twentieth century. But, if you look back to the time of his revelation you will find that the enemies of Islam never made this claim and do not think that the prophet was without Christian enemies. If it was as you claim and just a rinse and repeat so to speak do you not think that the Christians of his era would have seen that?
Now that we have gone over the illogical stance let us consider some basic logic on the Qur'an itself. Would you, if you were just a smart person, dictate a book chapter by chapter and have verses in it that chastise you? Yet, the Qur'an chastises the prophet and even tells us that he is just a man. I know all the miracles of Jesus (pbuh) personally as someone that grew up in the Bible and was a die hard Christian to the core and I can tell you truthfully that the miracles of Jesus (pbuh) was performed before him by previous prophets. Ishmael (pbuh) rose the dead, fed the hungry, healed the diseased (any of these sound familiar?). The greatest mircale of Isa (pbuh) was not his miracles but his birth.
In closing the Qur'an speaks of your kind and it responds to it as well. It challenges those who would doubt it to produce a surah like it.
i like to add one important point to what brother Abdullah mentioned
although many events and stories had been mentioned in both the Quran and the bible, but generally the Quranic naration is more logic, reasonable and sientific, for examplethe story of creation of the universe:
in the bible, there is a great problems in the proceedures of creation of the universe and the earth and the same of the arangements of creations on earth. while the Quranic story avoided all of these problems and added a new miracle of relating the universe age to the formation of the earth which is 6 days to 2 days (3:1). which is almost the same ratio the sientists talk about 13.7 BY : 4.6 BY (3:1).Noah people flood
, the bible tells many unlogic points about this flood, it covered the whole earth, the size of the ship that can bear all the earthcreatures, the time on board without food or water,......... while the quranic story avoided these points.the time of man on earth
: from Adam to Noah to Ibrahim to....Jesus which is around 4000-5000 years which is totally illogical, the Quran never talk about such numbers.the death of Moses pharouh in the sea
: the bible mention no thing about that, while the Quran tells that this pharouh died in the sea and his corp will be saved to be a sign to the next generations, which been proved by an Egyptian-French profesional team in the 1970s.
it seems like that, Muhammad (pbuh) copied the biblical stories, BUT after correcting the mistakes and adding a new miraculaous facts which is not mentioned in the bible and he himself never know about it before. OR IN A MORA LOGICAL EXPLANATION, the bible and the Qurn both have the same source, the omni-Knowlagable god, while the Quran kept pure and been meraculasly preserved while the bible been distorted by adding and removing by some men.