Q. I heard a lecture wherein the speaker said that the ‘Jews’ were first referred to as the Bani Israel but those elites who eventually changed the Torah were later known as Jews. Was this similar to that of Christianity in the sense that they were first Muslims then as the scripture changed they became known as Christians?
Please clarify and advise what to tell a Christian who is saying that Judaism was there before Isa (alayhis salaam) came.

A. The Jewish nation is Bani Israaeel. Even after they interpolated and mutilated the Tauraah, they remained Bani Israaeel. Even the Christians in the early days were Bani Israaeel. Nabi Isaa came to Bani Israaeel. However, the followers of Nabi Musaa (Alayhis salaam) from Bani Israaeel are called Yahood (Jewish) even the sincere ones who were great Ulama and Auliya as the Qur’aan makes it clear. From Bani Israaeel, the followers of Nabi Isaa (Alayhis salaam) are called Nasaara.
The name ‘christian’ is a fabrication of non-Bani Israaeel, westerners.
Westerners – those who are not Jews – have coined the term ‘Judaisim’. The religion of Nabi Musaa (Alayhis salaam) and of all the Ambiya was always Islam.
There is no contention in the fact that Nabi Musaa (Alayhis salaam) appeared before Nabi Isaa (Alayhis salaam). It is therefore correct that the
Islam propagated by Nabi Musaa (Alayhis salaam) to which westerners refer to as ‘Judaism) was before the advent of Nabi Isaa (Alayhis salaam).
Yahood is a race/ nation. This nation is called Bani Israaeel. Hence all Yahudis (Jews) regardless of the religion and ideology they follow are Bani Israaeel. Even atheist Jews are Bani Israaeel. Those Jews who embraced Islam at the hands of Nabi Isaa (Alayhis salaam) are called Nasaara by the
Qur’aan. However, the term Nasaara is not restricted to only Jews who
followed Nabi Isaa (Alayhis salaam). It refers to all people of any nation
who followed Nabi Isaa (Alayhis salaam).
The term ‘Yahudi’ is also used in the Qur’aan for only the followers of
Nabi Musaa (Alayhis salaam). It is used to distinguish between the followers of Nabi Isaa (Alayhis salaam) and Nabi Musaa (Alayhis salaam). In this
regard the Qur’aan Majeed states:
“Ibraaheem was neither Yahudi nor Nasaara. But, he was an uprighteous Muslim. He was not among the mushrikeen). (Aal-e-Imraan, Aayat 67)