chapter  10
Muhammad’s prophethood
Pages 25

Phase 1 (11/632-114/733) The Doctrina Jacobi Nuper Baptizati (c.13/634) is an anti-Jewish tract consisting of more than a hundred pages in Greek. Its brief mention of the Arabs represents hardly more than a footnote in such a massive tract, yet it is possibly the earliest known text which opines on the Arab prophet.1 In terms of Christian-Muslim relations, it can be considered little more than the opportunistic dismissal of the prophet of the Saracens in order to bolster the position of Jesus in a tract intended to convert Jews to Christianity. The relevant section reads:

I, having arrived at Sykamina, stopped by a certain old man well-versed in scriptures, and I said to him: “What can you tell me about the prophet who has appeared with the Saracens?” He replied, groaning deeply: “He is false, for the prophets do not come armed with a sword. Truly they are works of anarchy being committed today and I fear that the first Christ to come, whom the Christians worship, was the one sent by God and we instead are preparing to receive the Antichrist. Indeed, Isaiah said that the Jews would retain a perverted and hardened heart until all the earth should be devastated. But you go, master Abraham, and find out about the prophet who has appeared.” So I, Abraham, inquired and heard from those who had met him that there was no truth to be found in the so-called prophet, only the shedding of men’s blood.2