Jesus in India

Older Book Reviews (1899 – 1999)

Masih Hindustan Mein (Jesus in India) – Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, Qadian, India, 1899 

The first work that discussed the migration of Jesus to India in a comprehensive and scholarly manner was the work Jesus in India or Masih Hindustan Mein, by Hazrat Ahmad of Qadian. The work was completed in April 1899, but could not be published until shortly after his death in 1908. 

The monograph first outlines evidence from the New Testament that Jesus may have become unconscious when taken down from the cross, and had his health restored by his disciples.

Hazrat Ahmad gives a lengthy list of ancient medical textbooks which describe the healing ointment “marham-i-Isa” applied on the wounds of Jesus, hence indicating an old Eastern tradition of Jesus recovering from the torture of crucifixion. Evidence is given from Islamic sources – the Quran and Hadith that Jesus died a natural death. 

Subsequent chapters relate the journey of Jesus to the East, drawing mainly from old Islamic books of history such as Rauzat-us-Safa.

One of the more remarkable features of Jesus in India is the scholarly dissertation on whereabouts of the Lost Tribes of Israel, and evidence that these tribes were scattered throughout Afghanistan, Kashmir, and Western China. It is these same tribes Messiah had to preach to, writes, Hazrat Ahmad, to fulfill his mission to the Lost Sheep of Israel, as the New Testament relates.

Hazrat Ahmad intended Jesus in India to be the first part of a much larger project and intended to add more chapters. Unfortunately, plans for a three men expedition to Afghanistan, Kashmir and surrounding areas to gather more evidence for his book never materialized for various reasons. 

Nonetheless, his followers were able to supply more information on the historic account of Jesus’ migration and the tomb in Kashmir, which though not in Jesus in India, is extant in Ahmadiyya writings. 

Hazrat Ahmad’s companion Maulvi Abdul Karim relates that Ahmad received a letter describing a platform near Jalalabad, Afghanistan, which is known as the platform of Prophet Yuz Asaf. 

The local tradition states the Prophet arrived from Syria about two thousand years ago, and there is a jagir attached to this platform granted by the Afghan government (Al Hakam Vol. III No. 24 July 1899).

Another disciple and the first successor of Hazrat Ahmad, Hazrat Nurruddin, a long time resident of Kashmir, was able to collect over five hundred signatures from the local population attesting that the tomb of Yuz Asaf was indeed, the tomb of Hazrat Isa (Jesus). 

Yet another companion, Maulvi Abdullah, sent to investigate the tomb, wrote a lengthy letter describing the tomb, and reviewed the local tradition regarding the person entombed.

The book Jesus in India has become the classic work on the subject, and formed the groundwork and basic template for future studies for both Ahmad’s disciples and Western scholars interested in the subject.

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