7. The Deaths of Muhammad and of Christ
Ibn Hisham reported in his biography on the Prophet that Muhammad died after suffering from a high fever. Prior to his death, Muhammad claimed that the poison of the Jews had broken his heart. When a Jewish slave-woman laced his food with poison, a guest who was eating with him died! Muhammad himself sensed the poisoned food and spat out what was in his mouth before swallowing it. However, his body absorbed some of the poison, and that is what eventually caused his death.
The death of Christ, however, was clearly prophesied in the Qur'an, fulfilling the plan of God as a blessing for all men. In the Qur'an, the Almighty speaks directly to Jesus:
“I will cause you to die, and raise you up to Me.” (Sura Al Imran 3:55)
إِنِّي مُتَوَفِّيك وَرَافِعُك إِلَي (سُورَة آل عِمْرَان ٣ : ٥٥)
Even though this quotation is not written in the Gospel, it proves that Christ, according to the Qur'an, was not killed accidentally, but died in accordance with the will of God, in peace.
The Qur'an does not deny the historical death of Christ as some unbelievers claim, for we read the prophecy which Christ uttered about His own death, in Sura Maryam 19:33:
“And peace is upon me, the day I was born, the day I die, and the day I am raised up alive.”
وَالسَّلاَم عَلَي يَوْم وُلِدْت وَيَوْم أَمُوت وَيَوْم أُبْعَث حَيّا (سُورَة مَرْيَم ١٩ : ٣٣)
This great confession of the Qur'an confirms that Christ was born, died and rose from the grave. With this declaration, Muhammad supported the teachings of the Gospel. Everyone who believes in the sequence of this historical event shall live with Him who is alive now and forever!
When Christ returns to this earth, He will never die again. He did not indicate in Sura Maryam that He would die in the distant future but in a near future, after His birth and lifetime. The Qur'an testifies that Christ was born, that He died, and that He rose again in a sequential chain of events. Christians are certain about the historicity of the death and resurrection of the Son of Mary.
Christ died voluntarily and in perfect peace. We read this in the Gospel and in the Qur'an. Christ knew how He would die beforehand. He even appointed the day and the hour of His own death to coincide with the festivities of the Passover, according to the Law of Moses. He revealed that He would die as an atonement, saving all who believe in Him from their sins and the everlasting fire. All people die because they have sinned, but Christ never sinned. The Qur'an affirms this several times. Christ did not die for His own sins but took our sins upon Himself and died instead of us. There is a divine peace and a significance that surrounds His death, according to Sura Maryam, for He, the Lamb of God, carried the sins of the world away in His great love.