Posts Tagged ‘islam’

A Logical Model of ‘God Concepts’?

December 17, 2007

For an honest person, choosing a religion is a bit like being stranded in a desert with thousands of sign-posts, all pointing in an opposite direction. There are thousands of concepts of God(s), naturally only one such concept can be correct, since they contradict each other on many aspects, thus most of them are mutually exclusive in their validity — that is to say, only one can be true whilst rendering others false. For instance, either there is one God or there are 10 gods, both of them cannot be true simultaneously. In this paper, we explore the various concepts of god, in particular trinity, and its relation to abstract reasoning.

God no doubt would have known of this, and yet God wishes for us to choose the right path. Upon examining animals, one observes that we have been blest with remarkable amount of wisdom and intellect, and that we seem to have a choice of choosing a religious path. Therefore a fair God, assuming He/She wants us to embark upon the right path, would have instilled in us some mechanisms or tools, which can be utilized for the objective of choosing the right path. Had this not been true, then it would have implied that God is not just and He/She placed us in a situation such that only randomness can be our source of aid. Not implanting in us some tools or mechanism for choosing the right path and yet expecting us to choose the right path is a form of oppression and unjustness from God.

So what tools are available to us? For sure, one of the most worthy, if not the only tool, is our intellect and utilization of it. We observe that we have a choice of choosing the right religion and we also observe that we are also blest with greater intellect whilst other creations are not. Thus, it would not be an unreasonable deduction that Logic and usage of wisdom and intellect is a tool that we ought to apply to eliminate wrong concepts of God. In this series of articles we shall be examining the various concepts of God under the umbrella of logic and natural deduction. In this article we shall be examining mostly Christian doctrines.

Some might however argue that God could use some other supernatural mechanism to guide one to truth — that is plausible, however, since most of us have not been visited by a Holy Spirit or some other supernatural spirit, we can be innocent in our disbelief and the whole blame can be put on the Holy Spirit (and God therefore), who are intended to guide us. For the rest of us, logic is the best tool for eliminating wrong concepts of God. Indeed, apart from logic and intellect there seems to be no universal tool for examining concepts of God.

1) Trinity mon-ity and and multi-nity

There are many religions, including Christianity and Hinduism, which assert that 1 God is of the form n-tuple, that is to say god forms trinity or a n-tuple, where n is a natural number. Hinduism, whilst believing in thousands of Gods asserts that it is in fact one god. Christians believe:

“Trinity Central doctrine of Christianity, according to which God is three persons: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost. There is only one God, but he exists as ‘three in one and one in three’.” — Source: http://www.encyclopedia.com/doc/1O142-Trinity.html

“In Christianity, the doctrine of the Trinity states that God is one being who exists, simultaneously and eternally, as a mutual indwelling of three persons: the Father, the Son (incarnate as Jesus of Nazareth), and the Holy Spirit. Since the 4th century, in both Eastern and Western Christianity, this doctrine has been stated as “three persons in one God,” all three of whom, as distinct and co-eternal persons” — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trinity

“Shield of the Trinity” or “Scutum Fidei” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Shield-Trinity-Scutum-Fidei-basic.png) also states that neither of the three are same or equal but they are all god. It states:

The links are non-directional — this is emphasized in one thirteenth-century manuscript by writing the link captions
“EST” or “NON EST” twice as many times (going in both directions within each
link), and is shown in some modern versions of the diagram by superimposing each
occurrence of the “is” / “is not” text on a double-headed arrow ↔ (rather than
enclosing it within a link). So the following twelve propositions can be read
off the diagram:
“The Father is God”
“The Son is God”
“The Holy
Spirit is God”
“God is the Father”
“God is the Son”
“God is the Holy
Spirit”
“The Father is not the Son”
“The Son is not the Father”
“The
Father is not the Holy Spirit”
“The Holy Spirit is not the Father”
“The
Son is not the Holy Spirit”
“The Holy Spirit is not the Son”

Source http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shield_of_the_Trinity

It is essential to understand that Trinity does not state that w + x +y = z, Trinity on the other hand states that x + x + x = x, where w, x, y and z are variables of different instance and sustenance. For example, it can be stated that Father, Mother and Son makes one family — this is a reasonable conclusion, however, to state that father + father + father makes ONE father is incorrect. Trinity asserts that, Father (who is god), son (who is god), Holy Spirit (who is god) makes one god (god + god + god = one god), it does not merely say that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit make one god together and that the three entities are not god independently. Hence x+x+x = x is a valid symbolisation. For instance, 1 apple + 1 apple + 1 apple = 3 apples. However, using calculus derived of Trinity would certainly instantiate: 1 apple + 1 apple + 1 apple = 1 apple.

To state x + x + x = x, where x is an entity (personality) would be highly illogical in every sense! God (father) + God (son) + God(Holy Spirit) would make 3 Gods. Only way Father + Son + Holy Spirit can equate to one god is, if and only if, we accept that Father, Son and Holy spirit are not god independently, however, combined together they make 1 god, but this would contradict the teaching of Trinity as can be demonstrated by the above provided references, including the Shield of the Trinity. Indeed it is as such that when one prompts, is Jesus, independently of Holy Spirit, a God, then the reply given is “yes”.

Bearing that in mind, we can easily challenge the various explanations Christians give with the objective of logically explaining trinity. One such example is that of an Egg: yolk, white and shell accumulate to makes one egg. However, teachings of Trinity would assert that 1 yolk + 1 yolk + 1 yolk = 1 yolk and not 1 yolk + 1 shell + 1 white = 1 egg, as is evident from The Shield of Trinity. Christians try to bring such other ridiculous examples, such that of water being in three states, which do not even begin to explain away the contradictions in the Trinity.

Furthermore, if Jesus himself, independently is God, then what need is there of the Holy Ghost and Father? The other two godheads would be rendered totally useless as mere one is sufficient! If Jesus is God based on dependency of Father or Holy Spirit then not only would this contradict Trinity, but Christians would have to agree with the fact that Jesus is not God, Father is not God nor Holy Ghost is God, but 3 working together in unison makes 1 God — essentially, it would bottle down to 3 mini gods, even more of a nonsensical notion, which is even contradictory to the Christian theology and scriptures!

2) 100% God and 100% Man

Hinduism, Christianity and many paganistic religions cling onto the concept of anthropomorphism (i.e. God becoming a man). This argument establishes a connection between an omnipotent, infinite being immersing himself in a finite, limited human being. Christians assert that Jesus, for instance, was 100% and 100% God. That is One being, in a form of a human, exhibiting both (that is all) human characteristics and God characteristics. Thus, the individual would have to be simultaneously all-knowing and not-all-knowing; that individual would have to be limited in power and yet not be limited in power. However, it is contradictory to assert one can exhibit both such contrary characteristics simultaneously. To be God is to be totally divine, to be human is to be not divine, however it is not possible to be divine and not divine simultaneously. This argument can be proven formally thus:

In mathematics and logic, one can proof a proposition using many techniques and methodologies. Reductio ad absurdum/Proof by contradiction, is one such way, this is when opposite of proposition/argument is assumed and shown that such an assumption leads to absurdity, hence the proposition was incorrect. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proof_by_contradiction provides more information on Reductio ad absurdum. Note: in mathematical and scientific community Reductio ad absurdum is an absolutely valid form of proof. It is as effective a way of making a logical conclusion as any. In the words of G. H. Hardy (A Mathematician’s Apology), “Reductio ad absurdum, which Euclid loved so much, is one of a mathematician’s finest weapons. It is a far finer gambit than any chess gambit: a chess player may offer the sacrifice of a pawn or even a piece, but a mathematician offers the game.”

Proposition: Human X is not God.

Fact 1: God is all knowing; Fact 2: Humans are not all knowing

Thus we assume the opposite of proposition; Human X is God. Now if X is God then X is all knowing, however since X is Human, X is not all knowing simultaneously. So X is all knowing and not all knowing simultaneously — an absurdity/contradiction. This means our assumption was wrong that “X is God”. Thus, it is shown that X cannot be God.

Therefore, the entire concept of 100% God and 100% man is highly ridiculous and does not deserve any intellectual attention.

3) “Son of God” /Begotten Son

If this “Son of God” meaning is metaphorical then it would have a completely different connotation. For instance, it would not be unreasonable to think that we are children of God, in a sense that God protects and sustains us, in a sense a father would. However, some religions such as Christianity assert that this sonship of God is not metaphorical but literal, if an individual differs from this literal interpretation then naturally he or she would be agreeing with Islam or Judaic teachings; contrary to Christian, Hindu or paganistic teachings. Upon accepting “Son of God” thesis to be literal, a series of questions should arise. Christians go as far as labelling Jesus as “Begotten son of God”. However, what does it mean to say “begotten Son”? Sonship implies sexual intercourse, how did God came to acquire a son, therefore? Does god engage in an animal act of sexual intercourse or does god have genitals?

Marian-Webster defines begotten as follows:
“Main Entry: be·get Pronunciation: bi-‘get, bE-Function: transitive verb Inflected Form(s): be·got /-‘gät /; also be·gat /-‘gat/; be·got·ten /-‘gä-t&n /; or -got; -get·tingEtymology: Middle English begeten, alteration of beyeten, from Old English bigietan 1 : to procreate as the father : SIRE
2 : to produce especially as an effect or outgrowth

Oxford(http://www.askoxford.com/concise_oed/beget?view=uk) defines begotten as:
“• verb (begetting; past begot; past part. begotten) archaic or literary 1 produce (a child). 2 cause. — DERIVATIVES begetter noun.

— ORIGIN Old English, get, obtain by effort. ”

Therefore, believing literally in Sonship would refer to the first definition of the word begotten, second definition would apply to all of us and is of course metaphorical in sense of the word “begotten son”. A logical contradiction arises when we take sonship literally: if God is eternal, and has no beginning then it would mean that god cannot be a son. To be son is to have a beginning, but to be god is to be eternal therefore an entity can either be a god or it can have a beginning. Father procures son, thus before the son was procured then there was no such entity “son”, thus that individual would have had to have a beginning and consequently not be eternal. In other words, if the son (god) was begat at time x then there was no god at time x-1 or time < x, which would mean god had a beginning and was not eternal. However, those corresponding religions simultaneously teach eternalship of god and that god has no beginning and yet they assert that the sonship is to be taken literally — this leads to a contradiction, the two cannot exist simultaneously. If the entity is God then it cannot be Son and if it is Son then it cannot be God — the two are mutually exclusive. To sum up the argument: Let x be the proposition that ‘god is eternal (has no begining)’, let y be the proposition that ‘Son has a beginning’ (this must be a consequence if the Sonship is to be taken literally) then it would mean: { (x IMPLY (NOT y) ) XOR ( (y IMPLY (NOT x)). In other words, only one of them can be true, so if Jesus or another being is a literal “Son of God” then logically it cannot simultaneously be a god and vice versa — or else there is contradiction in the definition of “god” or “son”. Naturally god being eternal is widely accepted and sonship not being literal and metaphorical would support Islam or Judaistic teachings.

Following on from the previous points, if Jesus is son then he cannot be always with the father (co-existing always), because father is always before son. To say Son is eternal is in itself a contradiction, as there must have existed a time when Father existed yet Son did not exist. This also challenges the “co-existing” clause in the trinity doctrine. If they were co-existing then if Jesus was a Son then Jesus was not son simultaneously (as he was ever-existing) — not only does this completely contradict the definition of Son and Father. this also leads to several contradictions, therefore can be proven to be false mathematically using the method of “Reductio ad absurdum”.

4) “God dying for our Sins”

“God died for our sins” is a phrase often exclaimed aloud by many Christians, Hindu and paganistic religion practitioners. God (man) dying theorem does not only apply to Christianity but also to paganistic religions who also have gods, who too died for our sins. This argument needs to be divided into 2 sub-sections because upon confrontation with logical questions, they assert instead that God himself did not die but a man died.

First, let’s analyse the premiss of God (not man) himself dying. If Jesus (God) part died for 3 days, then this would imply that trinity did not hold for that period of time, and Twinity (Father and Holy Spirit) existed only. Since Twinity existed, and yet all three godheads are co-existing then this would mean the Twinity should have perished too, nonetheless regardless of whether Father and Holy Spirit died along with Jesus, a question emerges: Who was the God whilst the God was dead and non-existing? This would mean God is not eternal, which would contradict corresponding religious teachings anyway. Furthermore, if Jesus is God, and if Jesus died, and if God’s action are independent (meaning all things in universe happen with his consent); it then follows logically (by implication) that God committed a suicide! If not, then it would imply that God did not die, but a mere, mortal, insignificant man died.

But upon realising ridiculous implications of God dying, many Christians alter their initial meaningless statement to “God part did not die, but the man part of Jesus died”, so essentially a man died. But then a mere man died, which is of no significance. The Christians would then state that “Jesus was sinless, whom we need for redemption and salvation”, but this is as meaningless a statement as any, the concept of sin and sinless is religion bounded; it differs from a religion to religion and from an individual to individual. Upon what criteria are we judging Jesus as sinless? Based on Judaic criteria? Based on Islamic or Hindu criteria? Based on my, Bob and Tom’s criteria? Jesus is not sinless according to any of the above stated criteria! Christians are rendering Jesus as sinless by tailoring the definition of sinless to his actions and thoughts. Whatever Jesus did is to be regarded as perfect, therefore it is a bit like comparing what ever he did with criteria “whatever he did was perfect and sinless”, and then concluding he was sinless. I can use this criteria to label myself as sinless too! Without a universal criteria or agreed upon criteria we cannot label anyone as sinless, therefore, since such set of criteria has not been found, labelling Jesus sinless is therefore meaningless and the significant question of why would God-Man wish to die and create this nonsensical drama, when he could just forgive as a forgiving God would, remains to be unanswered. Such sort of dying for sins is a bit like a transaction: Blood-For-Forgiveness, one would have to spent blood (instead of sincerity) in order to have one’s sins forgiven. This is more like a trading than a forgiving god. So in essence, this stance totally undermines the logic in the Christian doctrine of salvation.

5) “You are limiting God”

After speaking to many Christians about similar topics, the most common ‘answer’ attained is: “You are limiting God by saying what God can do”. However, of course God can do everything, but God does all that befits his majesty, for instance, would god rape a person? Would god cease to exist? Of course not! Let us take a logical approach to this, we use Reducto du absurdum again:

Argument/Proposition: God cannot do all things

Fact 1: God is all knowing and eternal.

Thus we assume the opposite of proposition: God can do all things, if this is true, then this would mean God can become not all knowing, not eternal, not perfect, even god can make me the new god and cease to become the god. However, the above mentioned statements would mean that god is no longer a god (i.e. does not have attributes attributed to a god, i.e. God ceased to exist) – which nullifies our argument, thus by Proof by contradiction — there are things that god cannot do.

That demonstrates that “God can do all things” statement is self-contradictory, because by accepting this statement as true then such scenarios can be formulated that would cause God to stop being god — hence shown that there are limits to what god can do, whilst remaining a god. Indeed, God is all perfect, god does all that befits his majesty, god acquiring a son, god becoming a man, having other partners in the godhead and god dying are all against the attributes of one possessing perfect qualities.

Islamic Model of God

Now let us analyse what Islam says with regards to God. Islam, incidently, states:

  • God/Allah had no Son

  • God/Allah had no partner(daughter, wife, father, holy spirit or any equal). Islam has no Trinity.

  • There is nothing like God/Allah, Allah has no co-equal.

  • God/Allah is eternal — has no death and no beginning.

  • There is nothing like Allah/God i.e. There is no creation like Allah, and consequently, Allah never became a man or any other of his creation.

There is a chapter in Quran dedicated to describing the concept of God, that chapter is called “Ikhlaas” (“Sincerity”):

[Quran 112:001] Say: He is God, the One and Only;
[Quran 112:002] God, the Eternal, Absolute;
[Quran 112:003] He begetteth not, nor is He begotten;
[Quran 112:004] And there is none like unto Him.

Most of the theists agree on the first fact: God is one. However, they have tuples of God, which we have argued to be illogical in this article — Islam however does not have Trinity or “n in 1 god” concepts. Verse 112:2 states that Allah is eternal and absolute — once again almost all theists believe in this — however Islam asserts that God has no father/son hierarchy (since god is eternal), Islam consequently also affirms that God never died. Verse 112:3 states that God does not have a father/mother or son/daughter hierarchies — once again this has been argued to be a ridiculous notion in this article. Verse 112:4 states that there is nothing like god, indicating that there is no creation of God alike God himself — hence God is/was never a man (no 100% man and 100% god) dogma.

All of the above stated verses seems to be in perfect conciliation with the logical points raised in this article! Furthermore, all of the above stated verses seems to be in contradiction with Trinity and the similar belief systems — they also seems to be in contradiction with the logical points raised in this article.

Summary

There are many who continue in their blind faith, whilst agreeing that their doctrine is self-contradictory, illogical and even humorous at times. Such kind of mentality is backward and leads to a stern belief in blind-faith. If we cannot use logic to eliminate believes of ridiculous nature then one should have no difficulty in believing in Santa, unicorns, Mother Goose and flying monkeys. Such a person should furthermore have no faith in empirical evidence, observable reality and other logical notions. However, strangely enough they use logical methodologies when it agrees with stream of thoughts and discard their importance when it conflicts with their stream of thoughts.

Being born in a certain family ought not to mean one is destined for a life time of affirmation of the creed — however ridiculous it is. If this it to be adopted as our basis for defending blindly the outrageous believes then one has no power of reasoning with a person who is born in a family ascribing to the creed of god being a monkey or earth being flat — as such, both of these would require a logical perspective in to the respective notions. Essentially, one must exert some effort into contemplating upon his or her believes whilst utilizing the tools God has blest him or her with; the objective being the sieving out of the incorrect concepts of god.

“God is a miracle and unfit for our reasoning” are excuses which would only apply to an unjust god who blindfolded us into diverging alleyways, yet expecting us to converge to the right one, randomly, without any aid. Indeed, there can be no initial progress in ensuring the right religion is selected unless be it via the means for reasoning…

By invitation2learn

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Did Jesus Claim Divinity, Part 1? Examining the Four Gospels!

December 17, 2007

Introductions
Muslims believe in Jesus Christ, we believe that: Jesus was a Prophet of God, he was born off virgin Mary with no father, he was the Messiah and he was a pious man and therefore we love him too. However, Muslims do not believe that Jesus is God or the Son of God or in Trinity. So divinity (godship) of Jesus is a major thing which separates Muslims and Christians. Purpose of this article is to explore whether Jesus himself said that he is God in the Four Gospels.

John 10:30
Jhn 10:30 I and [my] Father are one.
Greek text of John 10:30 reads: ego kai pater esmen heis

First let’s read the verse in context, which starts from the verse 23:
Jhn 10:23 And Jesus walked in the temple in Solomon’s porch.
Jhn 10:24Then came the Jews round about him, and said unto him, How long dost thou make us to doubt? If thou be the Christ, tell us plainly.
Jhn 10:25 Jesus answered them, I told you, and ye believed not: the works that I do in my Father’s name, they bear witness of me.
Jhn 10:26 But ye believe not, because ye are not of my sheep, as I said unto you.
Jhn 10:27 My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:
Jhn 10:28 And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand.
Jhn 10:29 My Father, which gave [them] me, is greater than all; and no [man] is able to pluck [them] out of my Father’s hand.
Jhn 10:30 I and [my] Father are one.

In verse 28 Jesus says “neither shall any [man] pluck them out of my hand.” and in verse 29 he says “and no [man] is able to pluck [them] out of my Father’s hand.” and the following verse says “I and [my] Father are one. “. Verse 30 should be read with bearing in the mind the context and especially verse 28 and 29. If I person says “I am a da’ee, Jack is a da’ee, I and Jack are one”, then no one will assume that I am suggesting that Jack and I are one in physical person, naturally the interpretation would be that I am suggesting that I and Jack are one in the context (of da’ee) provided.

There is another place where the idea of oneness is applied by Jesus, in John 17:20-23:
Jhn 17:20 Neither pray I for these alone, but for them also which shall believe on me through their word;
Jhn 17:21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, [art] in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
Jhn 17:22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
Jhn 17:23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.

Some Christians insist that Greek word “heis” in John 10:30 must have literal physical meaning. However, in verses John 17:21, John 17:22 and John 17:23 same word “heis” is used. So John 10:30 whatever “oneness” is applied, same oneness is applied in John 17:20-23. The meaning and the intention of Jesus by John 10:30 will be discussed in “Reaction of the Jews” section.

John 8:58
Jhn 8:58 Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.
Greek text of John 8:58 reads: Iesous epo autos amen amen lego humin prin Abraam ginomai ego eimi

There are two arguments which are brought forth with regards to this verse: 1) Jesus said “I am”, which is a title for God in Exodus 2) Jesus had pre-existence thus he must be god.
Regarding the first argument, if saying “i am” makes a person God then many of us are gods, indeed even in Bible others have said “I am” yet Christians do not assert their divinity. In John 9:9 even a beggar said “I am” in a very similar context:

Jhn 9:9 Some said, This is he: others [said], He is like him: [but] he said, I am [he].
Greek text of John 9:9 reads: allos lego hoti houtos esti de allos hoti esti homoios autos ekeinos lego hoti ego eimi

In KJV we see John 9:9 ending in “[he]”, however this is addition of translators, it is not found in the Greek Bible, hence “he” is in []. In the original Greek text, in both verses (john 9:9 and john 8:58) the same Greek words are used for “I am” : ego eimi.

If “I am” is used to assert divinity to Jesus then similarly a beggar must qualify as being divine since he said the same thing. The context of John 9:9 and John 5:58 is very similar, in both instances individual’s identity is being questioned, even more so in John 9:9, and they both form a similar reply. Why should Jesus saying “I am” mean he is divine but beggar’s reply mean otherwise?

Other argument with regards to John 8:58 is pre-existence of Jesus. However, the concept of pre-existence of Prophets and other man exists in the Bible. For instance, Jeremiah and Solomon both had pre-existence in the Bible. Jeremiah 1:4-5 states:
Jer 1:4 Then the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Jer 1:5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, [and] I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.

Proverbs 8:22-30 speaks of Solomon’s pre-existence:
Pro 8:22 The LORD possessed me in the beginning of his way, before his works of old.
Pro 8:23 I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, or ever the earth was.
Pro 8:24 When [there were] no depths, I was brought forth; when [there were] no fountains abounding with water.
Pro 8:25 Before the mountains were settled, before the hills was I brought forth:
Pro 8:26 While as yet he had not made the earth, nor the fields, nor the highest part of the dust of the world.
Pro 8:27 When he prepared the heavens, I [was] there: when he set a compass upon the face of the depth:
Pro 8:28 When he established the clouds above: when he strengthened the fountains of the deep:
Pro 8:29 When he gave to the sea his decree, that the waters should not pass his commandment: when he appointed the foundations of the earth:
Pro 8:30 Then I was by him, [as] one brought up [with him]: and I was daily [his] delight, rejoicing always before him;

Even, in the Quran, Surah al-A‘raaf, 7:172, Allah informed that man existed in the spiritual form before the creation of the physical world:
[007:172] And (remember) when thy Lord brought forth from the Children of Adam, from their reins, their seed, and made them testify of themselves, (saying): Am I not your Lord ? They said: Yea, verily. We testify. (That was) lest ye should say at the Day of Resurrection: Lo! of this we were unaware; (Quran, Pickthall’s Translation, 7:172)

Biblically speaking even Jeremiah and Solomon had pre-existence, does this mean they are God? If not, then why should Jesus’ pre-existence mean he is God?

Son and begotten son of God
Some Christians, who are ignorant of the Bible as a whole assert that because Jesus was called the Son of God, he must therefore be divine. For instance Mark 1:1 states:
Mar 1:1 The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God;
Greek text of Mark 1:1 reads: arche euaggelion Iesous Christos huios theos.

However, Jesus is not the only one who is said to be “Son of God” in the Bible. Many individuals are called Son of God in the Bible, for instance:
Exd 4:22 And thou shalt say unto Pharaoh, Thus saith the LORD, Israel [is] my son, [even] my firstborn:
Jer 31:9 They shall come with weeping, and with supplications will I lead them: I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters in a straight way, wherein they shall not stumble: for I am a father to Israel, and Ephraim [is] my firstborn.
Luk 3:38 Which was [the son] of Enos, which was [the son] of Seth, which was [the son] of Adam, which was [the son] of God.
2Sa 7:14 I will be his father, and he shall be my son. If he commit iniquity, I will chasten him with the rod of men, and with the stripes of the children of men:
Rom 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
Jhn 1:12 But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, [even] to them that believe on his name:
Gen 6:2 That the sons of God saw the daughters of men that they [were] fair; and they took them wives of all which they chose.
Gen 6:4 There were giants in the earth in those days; and also after that, when the sons of God came in unto the daughters of men, and they bare [children] to them, the same [became] mighty men which [were] of old, men of renown.
1Jo 3:1 Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.
1Jo 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.

Even Jesus said in Matthew 5:9
Mat 5:9 Blessed [are] the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.

Therefore Sonship and children of God are not literal in Bible, if Jesus’ sonship is to be literal then so should Adam’s, David’s, Solomon’s, Job’s and other’s sonship be literal too.
Some Christians claim that John 3:16 indicates that Jesus is the only literal Son of God. John 3:16 states:
Jhn 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

However, David also was called begotten son of God:
Psa 2:7 I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou [art] my Son; this day have I begotten thee.
Exd 4:22 And thou shalt say unto Pharaoh, Thus saith the LORD, Israel [is] my son, [even] my firstborn:

Infact, RSV version of the Bible translates John 3:16 thus:
Jhn 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

Even David is called begotten son of god, therefore begotten son of god itself does not establish divinity of Jesus.

The meaning of “Son of God” meant by Jesus is also explored further in the “Reactions of the Jews” section.

Is Jesus God because he was called Lord?
Aside from Jesus other people were also called “lord” in the Bible. Abraham, Esau, Joseph and David were all called “Lord”.
Gen 18:12 Therefore Sarah laughed within herself, saying, After I am waxed old shall I have pleasure, my lord being old also?
Gen 32:4 And he commanded them, saying, Thus shall ye speak unto my lord Esau; Thy servant Jacob saith thus, I have sojourned with Laban, and stayed there until now:
Gen 44:20 And we said unto my lord, We have a father, an old man, and a child of his old age, a little one; and his brother is dead, and he alone is left of his mother, and his father loveth him. 1Sa 25:24 And fell at his feet, and said, Upon me, my lord, [upon] me [let this] iniquity [be]: and let thine handmaid, I pray thee, speak in thine audience, and hear the words of thine handmaid.
Act 16:30 And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?

In Act 16:30, Greek word kurios is used for “Sirs”, kurious was also translated as “lord” when it was in reference to Jesus. Indeed, one of the meaning of kurios is Sir or Master (http://www.blueletterbible.org/cgi-bin/words.pl?book=Act&chapter=16&verse=30&strongs=2962&page=).

Therefore Jesus being called “lord” does not make him God, just as Abraham being called “lord” does not make him a God.

Linguistically speaking, if lord equals God then British Parliament must be full of Gods!

Calling God Father
Jesus is not the only one who called God father, consequently calling God a father does not make Jesus god:
Mat 5:45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
Mat 5:48 Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect.
Mat 6:9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.
Luk 11:2 And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.

Was Jesus God because he had the Holy Ghost?
Having a Holy Ghost does not give divinity to Jesus since others in the Bible also had the Holy Ghost:
Luk 1:67 And his father Zacharias was filled with the Holy Ghost, and prophesied, saying,
Luk 1:41 And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost:
Act 4:8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Ghost, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel,
Act 13:9 Then Saul, (who also [is called] Paul,) filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on him,
Act 2:4 And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance.

Because Jesus was “not of this world”?
Jhn 8:23 And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world.

Other individual’s in Bible are also not of this world:
Jhn 17:14 I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.
Jhn 17:16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.

Because Jesus was “image of God”?
2 Corinthians 4:4 states “….Christ, who is the image of God.” but in Genesis 1:27 every man is an image of God
Gen 1:27 So God created man in his [own] image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

Was Jesus God because he was Messiah/Christ?
Literal meaning of the word Messiah is “to anoint”. There are other people who are anointed too in the Bible:
1Ki 1:39 And Zadok the priest took an horn of oil out of the tabernacle, and anointed Solomon. And they blew the trumpet; and all the people said, God save king Solomon.
Lev 4:3 If the priest that is anointed do sin according to the sin of the people; then let him bring for his sin, which he hath sinned, a young bullock without blemish unto the LORD for a sin offering.
Isa 45:1 Thus saith the LORD to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden, to subdue nations before him; and I will loose the loins of kings, to open before him the two leaved gates; and the gates shall not be shut;
Gen 31:13 I [am] the God of Bethel, where thou anointedst the pillar, [and] where thou vowedst a vow unto me: now arise, get thee out from this land, and return unto the land of thy kindred.

When the word anointed is in reference to Jesus they translate the word as Messiah or Christ but when the word anointed (messiah) is in reference to other people they present the literal translation (anointed).

John 14:6
Some assert that because Jesus said “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”, he must be God. First let us examine the context from verse 2 to verse 6:
Jhn 14:2 In my Father’s house are many mansions: if [it were] not [so], I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you.
Jhn 14:3 And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you unto myself; that where I am, [there] ye may be also.
Jhn 14:4 And whither I go ye know, and the way ye know.
Jhn 14:5 Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way?
Jhn 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

There are MANY mansions, and Jesus is going to prepare A PLACE, and for A PLACE Jesus is the way, the truth and the life. Naturally all prophets are the truth, none of them is a lie or they would not be a true prophet in the first Place. Jesus like other Prophets’ is also responsible for spiritual and good life after death and he was a way to God, like all other Prophets are.
John 14:6 at best proves that Jesus is a Prophet of God and not God.

John 14:8-9
Jhn 14:8 Philip saith unto him, Lord, shew us the Father, and it sufficeth us.
Jhn 14:9 Jesus saith unto him, Have I been so long time with you, and yet hast thou not known me, Philip? he that hath seen me hath seen the Father; and how sayest thou [then], Shew us the Father?

Christians assert that since Jesus said who has seen me has seen the father, he must therefore be God. However, let’s read John 5:37:
Jhn 5:37 And the Father himself, which hath sent me, hath borne witness of me. Ye have neither heard his voice at any time, nor seen his shape.

So here Jesus is saying no one has seen the Father yet in John 14:9 he says who has seen me has seen the father. So what did he mean in John 14:9? Let us examine other sayings of Jesus on this topic:

Jhn 8:19 Then said they unto him, Where is thy Father? Jesus answered, Ye neither know me, nor my Father: if ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also.

So who has seen Jesus has seen the father metaphorically speaking since Jesus does what the father commands him to do. Furthermore Jesus said that any man has seen the father who works God’s commandments, without presence of Jesus:

Jhn 6:46 Not that any man hath seen the Father, save he which is of God, he hath seen the Father.

And lastly, all the tritarian Christians must also take John 14:9 verse METAPHORICALLY and not literally, this is because according to trinity Father and Jesus are SEPERATE ENTITES. Thus if who has seen Jesus has seen father is taken literally then that would mean that Jesus is the father, which is contradictory to trinity.

1 John 5:7
KJV reads:
1Jo 5:7 For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one.

RSV translations read: 1Jo 5:7 And the Spirit is the witness, because the Spirit is the truth. 1Jo 5:8 There are three witnesses, the Spirit, the water, and the blood; and these three agree.

Let’s see what some other translations say:
NLT – 1Jo 5:7 – So we have these three witnesses–
NASB – 1Jo 5:7 – For there are three that testify:
Darby – 1Jo 5:7 – For they that bear witness are three:
ASV – 1Jo 5:7 – And it is the Spirit that beareth witness, because the Spirit is the truth.
HNV – 1Jo 5:7 – For there are three who testify:
NIV — 1Jo 5:7 – For there are three that testify:

One might ask why is there such variation in the translation? And which one is the correct translation? The scripture translator Benjamin Wilson gives the following explanation for this in his “Emphatic Diaglott.” Mr. Wilson says:
“This text concerning the heavenly witness is not contained in any Greek manuscript which was written earlier than the fifteenth century. It is not cited by any of the ecclesiastical writers; not by any of early Latin fathers even when the subjects upon which they treated would naturally have lead them to appeal to it’s authority. It is therefore evidently spurious.”

Richard Porson in “Secrets of Mount Sinai, James Bentley”, pp. 30-33 goes on to provide evidence that the verse 1 John 5:7 was only added at 400CE.

Peake’s Commentary on the Bible says “The famous interpolation after ‘three witnesses’ is not printed even in RSVn, and rightly. It cites the heavenly testimony of the Father, the logos, and the Holy Spirit, but is never used in the early Trinitarian controversies. No respectable Greek MS contains it. Appearing first in a late 4th-cent. Latin text, it entered the Vulgate and finally the NT of Erasmus.”

Misha’al Al-Kadhi writes on this in his book “What Did Jesus Really Say” in the section 1.2.2.5:
“For all of the above reasons, we find that when thirty two biblical scholars backed by fifty cooperating Christian denominations got together to compile the Revised Standard Version of the Bible based upon the most ancient Biblical manuscripts available to them today, they made some very extensive changes. Among these changes was the unceremonious discardal of the verse of 1 John 5:7 as the fabricated insertion that it is.”

So according to biblical scholars and the most recent translation of the Bible 1 John 5:7 has additions, which were not to be found in most ancient manuscripts of the Bible, consequently it is now thrown out of the Bible.

Because Jesus was “worshipped”?
In many places in the Four Gospels Jesus was worshipped, for example in John 9:38 :
Jhn 9:38 And he said, Lord, I believe. And he worshipped him.
Greek text of John 9:38 reads: de phemi kurios pisteuo kai proskuneo autos

Greek word used for “worship” in John 9:38 is “proskuneo”, which has following meanings:
1) to kiss the hand to (towards) one, in token of reverence
2) among the Orientals, esp. the Persians, to fall upon the knees and touch the ground with the forehead as an expression of profound reverence
3) in the NT by kneeling or prostration to do homage (to one) or make obeisance, whether in order to express respect or to make supplication
a) used of homage shown to men and beings of superior rank
1) to the Jewish high priests
2) to God
3) to Christ
4) to heavenly beings
5) to demons

Source: http://www.blueletterbible.org/cgi-bin/words.pl?book=Jhn&chapter=9&verse=38&strongs=4352&page=

Therefore the word proskuneo is in reference to respect and respect is not a physical worship, which one would do to God.

Act 10:25 And as Peter was coming in, Cornelius met him, and fell down at his feet, and worshipped [him].
Greek text of Act 10:25 reads: de hos Petros ginomai eiserchomai Kornelios sunantao autos pipto epi pous proskuneo

Same greek and english word is used in Act 10:25, which is used in john 9:38 and many other places in the Bible where Jesus is “worshipped”. Let us not forget that Cornelius was a pious men as stated in Act 10:2. Therefore naturally Cornelius would not worship Peter like he would worship God, but he would have worshipped through respect, most likely by falling upon Peter’s knees. This confirms that this worship is a form of a respect made to prophets and people of high authority and not necessarily of God. Furthermore, other people even in OT are given this kind of respect, which re-enforces that paying respect does not mean divinity:

1Sa 25:23 And when Abigail saw David, she hasted, and lighted off the ass, and fell before David on her face, and bowed herself to the ground,
2Ki 4:37 Then she went in, and fell at his feet, and bowed herself to the ground, and took up her son, and went out.
Gen 50:18 And his brethren also went and fell down before his face; and they said, Behold, we [be] thy servants.
2Sa 19:18 And there went over a ferry boat to carry over the king’s household, and to do what he thought good. And Shimei the son of Gera fell down before the king, as he was come over Jordan;

Because he forgave sins?
Does Jesus being able to forgive sin make him God? Were the Pharisees correct in their reaction or were they once again trying to find unnecessary faults with Jesus?

John 20:22-23 states:
Jhn 20:22 And when he had said this, he breathed on [them], and saith unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost:
Jhn 20:23 Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; [and] whose soever [sins] ye retain, they are retained.

If being able to forgive sins makes a person God then the disciples were appointed God? They were able to forgive sin! If forgiving sin is criterion for making a person God then disciples were made god too. In Leviticus we read:
Lev 5:13 And the priest shall make an atonement for him as touching his sin that he hath sinned in one of these, and it shall be forgiven him: and [the remnant] shall be the priest’s, as a meat offering.

Therefore the Priest is also playing a part in sin forgiveness, does that make him God? Jesus also said:
Luk 23:34 Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.

If Jesus alone is required for forgiving sin, then why would he ask Father to forgive sins?

Jesus said he is “Lord of Sabbath”?
Some assert because Jesus said he is the Lord of Sabbath he is God, however let us read the context in which he said that, since Lord can have several meanings such as master/sir. Let’s read it in the context:
Mat 12:1 At that time Jesus went on the sabbath day through the corn; and his disciples were an hungred, and began to pluck the ears of corn, and to eat.
Mat 12:2 But when the Pharisees saw [it], they said unto him, Behold, thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath day.
Mat 12:3 But he said unto them, Have ye not read what David did, when he was an hungred, and they that were with him;
Mat 12:4 How he entered into the house of God, and did eat the shewbread, which was not lawful for him to eat, neither for them which were with him, but only for the priests?
Mat 12:5 Or have ye not read in the law, how that on the sabbath days the priests in the temple profane the sabbath, and are blameless?
Mat 12:6 But I say unto you, That in this place is [one] greater than the temple.
Mat 12:7 But if ye had known what [this] meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice, ye would not have condemned the guiltless.
Mat 12:8 For the Son of man is Lord even of the sabbath day.

In the verse 1 and verse 2, Jesus’ disciples pluck and ate corn and that displeased the Pharisees. In verse 3 and 4, Jesus justifies himself by giving an example of David, who and his disciples ate even though it was unlawful for them. Here Jesus is trying to show that God allowed exceptions in the law, based upon the person and his authority. In the verse 5, Jesus again shows an exception where the Priests broke the Sabbath and yet remained guiltless. Once again, Jesus demonstrates that God allows exceptions in the law based on the persons involved and their authority. In verse 6, Jesus states that he is greater than the Priests. In verse 7, Jesus shows their ignorance and enforces he and disciples are guiltless. And then in verse 8, Jesus says he is the Lord of Sabbath, meaning he is given authority over Sabbath just like Priests were given authority in verse 5, they were not made to follow it, they were the exceptions.

Jesus further stated in verse 3 and 4, how David was allowed to eat without committing sin. In both examples Jesus indicates that the authority is given to people from God. Therefore Jesus is lord of Sabbath, meaning he does not have to follow it, since he is made an exceptional case just like others before him. His lordship is in reference to not obliged to follow the Sabbath and this was given from God. When read in context, Lord of Sabbath become clear that its in reference to breaking Sabbath and yet remaining sinless. This is the reason why Jesus gave the examples of David and priests, if the above discussed was not his assertion then he would not have given these examples. If this makes Jesus God, then surely the priests and also David ought to be God?

Does Jew’s reaction proves anything?
Jews throughout the Bible seems to understand Jesus, but do they understand him correctly? For instance in John 10 they appear to have misunderstood Jesus, if we read from John 10:33-36:
Jhn 10:33 The Jews answered him, saying, For a good work we stone thee not; but for blasphemy; and because that thou, being a man, makest thyself God.
Jhn 10:34 Jesus answered them, Is it not written in your law, I said, Ye are gods?
Jhn 10:35 If he called them gods, unto whom the word of God came, and the scripture cannot be broken;
Jhn 10:36 Say ye of him, whom the Father hath sanctified, and sent into the world, Thou blasphemest; because I said, I am the Son of God?

Verse 33 states that Jews understood that Jesus is blaspheming. In verse 34 Jesus states “Is it not written in you law” — referring to OT, which he confirmed in Matthew 5:17-20. He further says “I said, that ye are gods”, he is obviously referring to Psalms 82:6:

Psa 82:6 I have said, Ye [are] gods; and all of you [are] children of the most High.

So Jesus is saying, if God called them gods, unto whom the word of God came (meaning that the prophets of God were called ‘Gods’) and the scripture cannot be broken (in other words – you cannot contradict me!).” – Jesus is arguing that “if good men, holy men, prophets of God are being addressed as “GODS” in our Books of Authority, with which you find no fault – then why do you take exception to me? – When the only claim I make for myself is far inferior in our language, “a son of God” as against others being called “God” by God Himself. Even if I (Jesus) described myself as “god” in our language, according to Hebrew usage, you could find no fault with me.” In verse 36 Jesus confirms he was appointed to the position of holy man by father, just as Jeremiah was sanctified from Father in Jeremiah 1:5.

Also in John 5, Jesus had healed a certain man in Bethesda on Sabbath, which the Jews disapproved of. He furthermore says in “Jhn 5:17 But Jesus answered them, My Father worketh hitherto, and I work.”. The Jews take it for granted that Jesus is an ordinary Jew, but Jesus affirms his closeness to God, and hence his statement that Father works hitherto makes them assume that he is making himself to God by stating what God would do. However, if we imagine Jesus to be a holy man, such as a Prophet, then Jesus’ statement would not be blasphemous. It is once again Jew’s misunderstanding and lack of knowledge of his true identity that makes them think that Jesus is making himself equal to God. If they accepted him as a Prophet then his statement would have no problem.

Furthermore, Jesus defends himself from the Jew’s misunderstanding continuously until verse 47. He even says him and father are separate entities in verse 32 and 36. He defends himself by saying that they have never heard nor seen the father, therefore clearly refuting the allegation in John 5:18. He even says he can do nothing of himself in John 5:30 in order to remove the misconception!

Because he was the “Saviour”?
Some assert because Jesus was called saviour he must be god, however there were other saviours in the Bible too:
2Ki 13:5 (And the LORD gave Israel a saviour, so that they went out from under the hand of the Syrians: and the children of Israel dwelt in their tents, as beforetime.
Isa 19:20 And it shall be for a sign and for a witness unto the LORD of hosts in the land of Egypt: for they shall cry unto the LORD because of the oppressors, and he shall send them a saviour, and a great one, and he shall deliver them.

Are the other saviours God too? If not then why should Jesus being a saviour make him God?
Because he did Miracles?

Bible is full of miracles by Isaiah, Moses, Ezekiel and others. Jesus raised Lazarus from death, however, Ezekiel 37:1-10 states that Ezekiel raised a whole city from dead. Joshua stopped the sun and the moon for one whole day in Joshua 10:12-13.

Elisha is said to have raised the dead, resurrected himself, healed a leper, fed a hundred people with twenty barley loaves and a few ears of corn, and healed a blind man: (2 Kings 4:35, 2 Kings 13:21, 2 Kings 5:14, 2 Kings 4:44, and 2 Kings 6:11.)

Bible records many miracles performed by Moses such as parting of the sea, of his changing of a stick into a serpent, of his changing of water into blood and so forth. According to Jesus himself, miracles does not even a person prophet, let alone God:

Mat 24:24 For there shall arise false Christs, and false prophets, and shall shew great signs and wonders; insomuch that, if [it were] possible, they shall deceive the very elect.

Adam had no father nor mother, Eve had no mother and Jesus had no Father. Therefore Jesus’ birth does not make him a God, if it does then Adam is a bigger God.

Hebrews 7:1-4 states that Melchizedec was “without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God”, is he God too? Jesus also said:
Luk 11:20 But if I with the finger of God cast out devils, no doubt the kingdom of God is come upon you.
Mat 12:28 But if I cast out devils by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God is come unto you.
Jhn 5:30 I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.

So Jesus even states that miracles he does, such as casting out devil are by the finger of God and not himself.

Because he was “Sinless“?
Some assert because Jesus was ‘sinless’ he must be God, however Zacharias and Elisabeth were also ‘sinless’ as they followed ALL commandments. Since they followed ALL commandments they must have been sinless. However, the actual word “sinless” is not even to be found in the KJV Bible!

Luk 1:5 There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife [was] of the daughters of Aaron, and her name [was] Elisabeth. Luk 1:6 And they were both righteous before God, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord blameless.

Furthermore:
Luk 1:13 But the angel said unto him, Fear not, Zacharias: for thy prayer is heard; and thy wife Elisabeth shall bear thee a son, and thou shalt call his name John.
Luk 1:14 And thou shalt have joy and gladness; and many shall rejoice at his birth.
Luk 1:15 For he shall be great in the sight of the Lord, and shall drink neither wine nor strong drink; and he shall be filled with the Holy Ghost, even from his mother’s womb.

John was filled with the Holy Ghost even from his mother’s womb, naturally Holy Ghost would prevent him from sinning!

Conclusion
In OT there are many verses, where God says he is God such as: Gen 17:1, Gen 26:24, Gen 28:13, Gen 31:13, Exd 3:6, Lev 18:30, Lev 19:3, Lev 19:25, Lev 20:7, Isa 46:9, Deu 29:6
and many others. But if Jesus is God from OT why would he remain shy of repeating his godship many times EXPLICITLY? Christians claim Jesus is Man and God at the same thing, Jesus explicitly confirmed his Manship in John 8:40:
Jhn 8:40 But now ye seek to kill me, a man that hath told you the truth, which I have heard of God: this did not Abraham.

However, there is no verse in the four gospels from the mouth of Jesus as explicit as John 8:40, which affirms his Godship. Yet we have countless statements of Jesus in the four gospels, could he not find the time to make a mention of his Godship?

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Did Muhammed Copy And Plagarise Bible? Did Prophet Muhammed Author Quran for Worldly Gains?

December 17, 2007

Could Prophet Muhammed Have Read Bible And Copied?
Quran and the Hadith state that Prophet Muhammed was Ummi. Quran 7:158 states:

[007:158] Say (O Muhammad): O mankind! Lo! I am the messenger of Allah to you all – (the messenger of) Him unto Whom belongeth the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth. There is no God save Him. He quickeneth and He giveth death. So believe in Allah and His messenger, the Prophet who can neither read nor write, who believeth in Allah and in His Words, and follow him that haply ye may be led aright. (Pickthall Translation, Quran 7:158)

Pickthall translated the word Ummi as “who can neither read nor write”.

According to Ectaco English-Arabic Online Dictionary ( http://www-old.ectaco.com), arabic word Ummi (أمي) means:
“ILLITERATE, UNLETTERED” Source: http://www-old.ectaco.com/online/diction.php3?lang=3&q=1&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;refid=316&rfr_id=1&rqt_id=19731153&pagelang=23&word=%C3%E3%ED&direction=2&x=37&y=15

And according to Ectaco English-Arabic Online Dictionary ( http://www-old.ectaco.com), arabic words for illiterate are:
أمي ِ يقرأ وِ يكتب, جاهل, أمي Source: http://www-old.ectaco.com/online/diction.php3?lang=3&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;q=2&refid=316&rfr_id=1&rqt_id=19731153&pagelang=23&word=ILLITERATE&direction=1
Quran also states that Prophet Muhammed was illiterate. Quran 29:048 says:
[029:048] And thou wast not (able) to recite a Book before this (Book came), nor art thou (able) to transcribe it with thy right hand: In that case, indeed, would the talkers of vanities have doubted. (Yusuf Ali Translation, Quran 29:48)

So until that point we can be sure that Prophet Muhammed could not read nor write. Naturally, if prophet could read or write then Non-Muslims would have exposed prophet Muhammed as a liar. They would have seen Prophet Muhammed writing or reading and used that as an evidence that he lied in Quran 29:48. Their reaction and refusal to use 29:48 as a proof to demonstrate that prophet Muhammed was a liar is a solid proof that prophet Muhammed could really not read nor write and nor could he consquently have read Bible personally.

Did Waraqa Ibn Nawful teach Prophet Muhammed?
Waraqa was a cousin of Khatija (RA), first wife of Prophet Muhammed. He was a learned man and was well versed in New Testament. Some assert that Waraqa could have been teaching prophet Muhammed. There are several historical and logical flaws in that assertion.

Sahih bukhari Volume 1, Book 1, Number 3 states:
“…Waraqa replied in the affirmative and said, “Anyone (man) who came with something similar to what you have brought was treated with hostility; and if I should remain alive till the day when you will be turned out then I would support you strongly.” But after a few days Waraqa died…” (Sahih Bukhari Volume 1, Book 1, Number 3)

Firstly, Waraqa died few days later after Prophet Muhammed recieved the first revelation of the Quran. Since Waraqa died after few days later then he cannot have been the source of Quran, since the Quran continued to be revealed continuously upto 23 years after his death. Naturally, since he was dead he could not have been teaching Prophet Muhamnmed or been the source of Quran!

Secondly, Waraqa was a pious and a wise man, who dedicated much of his life in the search of God. However, he stated in Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 55, Number 605:

“Narrated ‘Aisha:
The Prophet returned to Khadija while his heart was beating rapidly. She took him to Waraqa bin Naufal who was a Christian convert and used to read the Gospels in Arabic Waraqa asked (the Prophet), “What do you see?” When he told him, Waraqa said, “That is the same angel whom Allah sent to the Prophet) Moses. Should I live till you receive the Divine Message, I will support you strongly.” (Sahih Bukhari Volume 4, Book 55, Number 605)

Thus he was intending to support Prophet Muhammed and accepted his prophethood. If he had been the source of Quran then he would have exposed prophet Muhammed and refused to follow him! It must be remembered that Waraqa was a god-fearing and a noble person.

When was Bible translated into arabic according to historian?
According to all scholarly sources Bible was not translted into Arabic during Prophet’s time. The Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics admits this:

there is no evidence of any parts of the Bible having been translated into arabic before Islam. (Hastings, James. The Encyclopedia of Rleigion and Ethics. Vol. X, p. 540)

Hastings Dictionary of the Bible attributes the first arabic translation of the Bible to the tenth century (Source: Hastings, James. Dictionary of the Bible. p. 105). However, Encyclopedia Judaica attributes the first arabic translation of the Old Testament either to Hunayn Ibn Ishaq (800-873CE) or to Saadiah b. Joseph Gaon (882-942CE) (Source: Encyclopedia Judaica, vol. 4, p. 863)

Paul Wegner explains that the Christian and Jewish traditions that were circulating in Arabia were oral traditions. But the Christian and Jewish groups in arabia were not orthodox at all, and there were numerous heretical groups:

The Scriptures do not seem to have been extant in an Arabic version before the time of Muhammad (570-632), who knew the gospel story only in oral form, and mainly from Syriac sources. These Syriac sources were marked by Docetism (believed that Jesus had only a divine nature and only appeared to be incarnate – they thought the material world and thus one’s body was inherently evil)… (Wegner, Paul D. The Journey from Texts to Translations. 1999. Grand Rapids: Baker Books. p. 250)

According to New Catholic Encyclopedia:
Neither Arabian Jews not Arabian Christians, unfortunately, were to be classed among the better representatives of their faiths at the time. The former had lived in comparative isolation possibly since the middle of the 1st millenium B.C., although they had been mildly successful in proselytism and the latter were mainly heretical Monophysites, remote in every sense from the centers of Christian learning. (New Catholic Encyclopedia. Vol 9, p.1001)

There are hadiths stating Waraqah Ibn Nawful translated and read New Testament in arabic. Sahih Bukhari Volume 6, Book 60, Number 478 states:
“…Waraqa had been converted to Christianity in the Pre-lslamic Period and used to write Arabic and write of the Gospel in Arabic as much as Allah wished him to write. He was an old man and had lost his eyesight. …” (Sahih Bukhari Volume 6, Book 60, Number 478)

There is no hadith stating that Waraqah Ibn Nawful translated the whole bible into arabic, including Old Testament and New Testament, which was offical and available to public. As the hadith states Waraqah translated the Gospel as much as Allah wihed him to write. He also became blind, which naturally would have prevented him from translating further. Furthermore, history dictates that his translation was for personal usage and not an official translation of the Bible accessible to the Public, therefore Prophet Muhammed getting a copy of his translation and reading it is very unlikely. He only translated fragments of the Bible, which was for his personal study. Therefore, the hadiths and history do not contradict on this issue.

Did Roman Blacksmith Teach Prophet Muhammed the Quran?
Some pagans accused Prophet Muhammed of learning the Quran from the Roman blacksmith, who lived in the outskirts of Makkah and was a Christian. Prophet used to go and watch him do his work often. However, Allah (SWT) himself refuted this claim by the use of logic:

[016:103] We know indeed that they say, “It is a man that teaches him.” The tongue of him they wickedly point to is notably foreign, while this is Arabic, pure and clear. (Yusuf Ali Translation, Quran 16:103)

That would be like stating that a chinese immigrant, who didn’t know English well authored Shakespere’s work; which is obviously illogical. In a same banner how could a blacksmith who didn’t know arabic well have authored Quran, linguistics of which exceed excellence? Indeed, he would not have managed to even convey and explain his basic believes to the Prophet!

Did ‘Hanif’ teach Prophet Muhammed the Quran?
Hanif were the group of people at Mekkah who tried to follow religion of Abraham, and therefore believed in monotheism. Before the revelation of the Quran, Prophet Muhammed himself was a Hanif.

However, the Hanifs were not learned about Christianity and Judaism. Indeed as it is demonstrated from Sahih Hadith Volume 5, Book 58, Number 169, many of the Hanif knew no background knowedlge of Judaism and Christianity, and their religion seems contradicting to Hanifs believes. Therefore, even the Hanifs were not aware of Judo-Christian believes, so there is no possibilty or proof of them teaching Prophet Muhammed about Judo-Christian believes.

Did Priest and Rabbi teach Prophet Muhammed the Quran?
The discussions between priest and Rabbi and Prophet Muhammed took place in Madinah, however much of the Quran, specially the stories of Prophets Such as Jesus (Surah Maryam), Joseph (Surah 12) and others were revealed in Mekkah. That theory would only be worth considering if the stories of Prophet and other bible-related stories were ONLY revealed in Madinah. But the bible-related stories were revealed in Mekkah, where Prophet Muhammed did not participate in debates with priests and rabbi.

Were the occasional trips to Syria source of Prophet’s knowledge?
There are 2 recorded travel of Prophet Muhammed to Syria. One when he was 12 years old and second when he was around the age of 25.

On his journey to Syia when he was 12, he met a monk by the name of Bahira. An immediate question arises, how can a child of 12 learn the theology of different religions in such detail at a brief visit, whilst constanly accompanied by his Uncle and other traders and yet manages to remember all this information until the age of 40? This is a logical fallacy! Naturally a child at such an age cannot have enough intelligence to comprehend complex theology (in detail), and yet remember for more than 28 years.

Furthermore, Seerah (Biography of Prophet Muhammed) tells us that Prophet Muhammed was accompanied by his Uncle and many other traders, naturally they would not forsake a child in a totally different country; they would accompany him to every possible corner! This would minimise the time he has for learning complex theology.

Bahira himself believed in prophethood of Prophet Muhammed. Indeed, the invitation to entertainment itself was in honour of Prophet Muhammed. His belief in prophethood of Muhammed is described in many seerah text including in an article on http://www.musalla.org/Articles/Seerah/seerah7.htm, which reads:

Bahira said that he had seen the stones and the trees prostrating to Muhammad as Muhammad had been walking by. They only do this for a prophet of Allah. He looked at the Muhammad’s back and noticed the seal of the prophet, which was an oval shape protruding just below Muhammad’s shoulder blades. He said that this was one of the signs of a great prophet to come that was taught to them in their books.

Second journey was for trade, the story is narrated here http://www.musalla.org/Articles/Seerah/seerah7.htm:

Khadija soon sent word to Muhammad asking him if he would take a trade caravan to Syria. She would pay him a high fee, which was double that of which she had paid any other person. She also gave Muhammad the services of a young lad by the name of Maysarah who would look after him on the journey. When Muhammad reached Basra, he was shading under a tree when a Monk saw him by the name of Nestor. Nestor asked Maysarah about the person sitting under the tree; Maysarah replied that it was Muhammad. Nestor said, that person is no other than a messenger of Allah. Maysarah soon realised that he was in the company of a very special person. He said that he noticed that the heat was extreme when he saw a clear vision of two angels shading Muhammad from the heat of the day.

Main point to notice is that Prophet Muhammed was again followed closely by Maysarah, therefore he would have realised if Prophet Muhammed had been learning about Bible. And once again the monk Nestor believed in the prophethood of Prophet Muhammed. Muhammed Mohar Ali writes in his book on this topic:

Had Muhammed contacted during his trade journeys to Syria any Christian monk or layman for obtaining information or even for casual discussion, the Quraysh opponents, many of whom had accompanied him to Syria, would not have failed to make the most of it in their attack against him. That no such allegation was made by them is a decisive proof that he had not sought information about Christianity or Judaism from anyone in the course of his journey to Syria. (Sirat Al-Nabi And the Orientalists Vol. I A by Muhammed Mohar Ali, Page 266)

Did Prophet Muhammed heard Quss preach Christianity at the Ukaz fair?
In his book Sirat Al-Nabi And the Orientalists Vol. I A, Muhammed Mohar Ali writes regarding this:
It is stated that the Prophet heard Quss preach at the Ukaz fair. This tradition is unanimously classified as spurious and is rejected as such. Specially, one of its narrators, Muhammed ibn al-hallaj al-Lakhmi, is condemned as a confirmed liar (kadhdhab). And even according to this spurious report, the Prophet was only one of the audience and did not make any enquiries as such with the speaker. The oriantilists’s use of this report without any indication of its weakness and untrustworthiness is indicative of how such materials are uncritically accepted and cited to support a particular assumption. (Sirat Al-Nabi And the Orientalists Vol. I A by Muhammed Mohar Ali, page 266-267)

Did Prophet Muhammed Author Quran for Worldly Gains?
It is very evident from Seerah (biography of Prophet’s life) that Prophet Muhammed could not have authored Quran for worldly gains.

After unsuccessful attempts of Quresh (tribe of Mekkah) they could do little to prevent islam from spreading. Therefore they tried to bribe Prophet Muhammed into leaving islam. Utbah Ibn Rabiah was sent for this task. This story is narrated in a Seerah called “Muhammed The Last Prophet”, by Sayyed Abdul hasan ‘Ali Nadwi, page 43:

‘Nephew,’ he [Utbah] said, ‘you know your standing among us, but you have brought a matter of grave concern to your people. You have divided their community, made fun of their customs, criticised their gods and their religion and declared some of their ancestors to be unbelievers. Now, listen to me. I will make some proposals for you to examine and perhaps you will accept some of them.’ The Messenger of Allah said, ‘Speak, Abul-Walid. I am listening.’ ‘Nephew, ‘Utbah continued, ‘if you want money by this business, we will collect some of our property and make you the wealthiest among us. If you want honour, we will make you our chief so that every decision is yours. If you want a kingdom, we will make you our king. If you are possessed by a ghost of a jinn that you cannot drive away from yourself, we will find skilful doctors to help you. We will spend our wealth on it till you are cured.’When Utbah had finished, the Messenger of Allah asked, ‘Have you finished, Abul-Walid?’
‘Yes.’
‘Then listen to me.’
‘I will,’ said Utbah. Then the Messenger of Allah recited some verses from Surah Fussilat. Utbah listened intently, putting his hands behind his back and leaning on them. When the Messenger of Allah reached the place mentioning prostration, he prostrated and then said, ‘You have heard what you have heard, Abul-Walid. It is now up to you.’ (“Muhammed The Last Prophet”, by Sayyed Abdul hasan ‘Ali Nadwi, page 43)

If Prophet Muhammed had been after money, women, kingdom or any other worldly desire then now would have been a perfect chance! But Prophet Muhammed chose Islam above all.
Furthermore, history dictates that Prophet’s financial status worsened after the Prophethood mission. “Muhammed The Last Prophet”, by Sayyed Abdul hasan ‘Ali Nadwi, page 185 narrates:

‘A’ishah has related, ‘When the Messenger of Allah died, there was nothing in the house that a creature could eat except a little barley on a shelf. (“Muhammed The Last Prophet”, by Sayyed Abdul hasan ‘Ali Nadwi, page 185)

Even a person considered poor by today’s standards would have had more lexuries than that. If Prophet’s intentions were to gain wealth then surely he would have had large amount of wealth and luxieries by the time of his death.

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Does Quran Promote Killing of Innocent especially non-muslims? How do you explain 9:5, 8:12, 2:191, 4:88 and many others?

December 17, 2007

It is amazing to see how many non-muslims would blindly post the verses from Quran, without even reading from ‘appropriate’ and well-know translations. Needless to say they hardly ever know the context. In this article we will be examining commonly quoted verses on the topic of violence and refuting them. This article is divided in 3 parts:
1) Refuting commonly quoted verses on the topic of violence
2) Exposing the hypocrisy of Jews and Christians
3) Providing accurate picture of Islam

1)Refuting commonly quoted verses on the topic of violence
9:5
Islam-critics only post 9:5:
“Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them, and take them (captive), and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish worship and pay the poor-due, then leave their way free. Lo! Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.” (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 9:5)

Let’s read the verse in context 9:1-9:5:
Freedom from obligation (is proclaimed) from Allah and His messenger toward those of the idolaters with whom ye made a treaty. Travel freely in the land four months, and know that ye cannot escape Allah and that Allah will confound the disbelievers (in His Guidance). And a proclamation from Allah and His messenger to all men on the day of the Greater Pilgrimage that Allah is free from obligation to the idolaters, and (so is) His messenger. So, if ye repent, it will be better for you; but if ye are averse, then know that ye cannot escape Allah. Give tidings (O Muhammad) of a painful doom to those who disbelieve, Excepting those of the idolaters with whom ye (Muslims) have a treaty, and who have since abated nothing of your right nor have supported anyone against you. (As for these), fulfil their treaty to them till their term. Lo! Allah loveth those who keep their duty (unto Him). Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them, and take them (captive), and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish worship and pay the poor-due, then leave their way free. Lo! Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 9:1-5)

This verses is always quoted out of context, they never post 9:6 or from 9:1 to 9:6. If we read from start it states that there was a treaty, which the Pagans of Arab broke. Thus Allah gave them 4 months as 9:2 states in order to amend the treaty. Verse 9:4 states that the punishment prescribed in 9:5 is ONLY to those who broke the treaty and NOT to those who abided by the treaty. Therefore the context of 9:5 is of war with the pagan Arabs who broke the treaty yet refused to amend it in 4 months.

Naturally, in war violence is expected. If a war is declared between Country A and Country B, because country B broke the treaty and refused to amend, then if president of country A states “wherever you find soldiers of Country B, you kill them and besiege them”, no one would truly find much wrong in that statement.

Killing in war is nothing peculiar, and there is yet to be a war where soldiers hugged and kissed each other. In additions, Dr. Zakir Naik writes in his book “Replies to the most common questions asked by non-muslims“:

“4. Verse 9:5 quoted to boost morale of Muslims during battle
Similarly in Surah Taubah chapter 9 verse 5 the Qur’an says, “Kill the Mushriqs [pagans] where ever you find them”, during a battle to boost the morale of the Muslim soldiers. What the Qur’an is telling Muslim soldiers is, don’t be afraid during battle; wherever you find the enemies kill them.”

Islam-critics remain shy of posting the next verse, 9:6, as it contains the answer to their deception:

“And if anyone of the idolaters seeketh thy protection (O Muhammad), then protect him so that he may hear the Word of Allah, and afterward convey him to his place of safety. That is because they are a folk who know not. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 9:6)

Quran does not only say that you release those who seek protection but it goes even further and states to protect them! In the present international scenario, even a kind, peace-loving army General, during a battle, may let the enemy soldiers go free, if they want peace. But which army General will ever tell his soldiers, that if the enemy soldiers want peace during a battle, don’t just let them go free, but also escort them to a place of security?

Hence even in war Quran promotes peace.

2:191
Islam-critics usually apply “cut and choose” approach with regards to this verse. They only quote: “And slay them wherever ye catch them…” (2:191). However, let us be brave enough to read the whole passage in context from 2:190-195:

Fight in the cause of God those who fight you, but do not transgress limits; for God loves not transgressors. And kill them wherever ye catch them, and turn them out from where they have turned you out; for persecution and oppression are worse than slaughter; but fight them not at the Sacred Mosque, unless they (first) fight you there; but if they fight you, kill them. Such is the reward of those who reject faith. But if they cease, God is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. And fight them on until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice and faith in God; but if they cease, let there be no hostility except to those who practice oppression. The prohibited month, for the prohibited month, and so for all things prohibited, there is the law of equality. If then any one transgresses the prohibition against you, transgress ye likewise against him. But fear (the punishment of) God, and know that God is with those who restrain themselves. And spend of your substance in the cause of Allah, and make not your own hands contribute to (your) destruction; but do good; for Allah loveth those who do good. (YUSUF ALI, Quran 2:190-195)

The verse clearly states to fight those who fight you, yet do not transgress limits. In so sense therefore does it promote killing of innocent but allows self-defence. It further goes on to state “And fight them on until there is no more tumult or oppression, and there prevail justice” and “if they cease, let there be no hostility except to those who practice oppression”. Hence, once again when the whole context is examined the verses does not promote killing of innocent in anyway.

Abdul Majid Daryabadi (Finlay, Greece Under the Romans, pp. 367-368) writes on verse 2:190:
“…Violating the truce they themselves had signed. The Muslims, after having borne untold persecution with almost superhuman fortitude for years and years at the hands of the pagans of Makkah, are now for the first time enjoined to take to reprisals. ‘For a full thirteen years the Muslims were subjected to relentless persecution in Mecca. The Prophet and his followers fled for life to Medina, but the enemy would not leave them alone in their refuge. They came to attack them within a year, and the first three battles were fought in the very locality which will whether the Prophet was an assailant or defendant’ (Headley, The Original Church of Jesus Christ and Islam, p. 155). The Makkans had signed a truce and were the first to break it…”

Once again when the whole context is examined the verses does not promote killing of innocents, whether muslims or non-muslims in anyway, but only self-defence.

4:89
Verse says:
But if they turn away, catch them and slaughter them wherever ye find them; and (in any case) take no friends or helpers from their ranks.” (4:89)

Once again the context is ignored, they don’t quote previous and next verses.

They but wish that ye should reject Faith, as they do, and thus be on the same footing (as they): But take not friends from their ranks until they flee in the way of Allah (From what is forbidden). But if they turn renegades, seize them and slay them wherever ye find them; and (in any case) take no friends or helpers from their ranks;- Except those who join a group between whom and you there is a treaty (of peace), or those who approach you with hearts restraining them from fighting you as well as fighting their own people. If Allah had pleased, He could have given them power over you, and they would have fought you: Therefore if they withdraw from you but fight you not, and (instead) send you (Guarantees of) peace, then Allah Hath opened no way for you (to war against them). Others you will find that wish to gain your confidence as well as that of their people: Every time they are sent back to temptation, they succumb thereto: if they withdraw not from you nor give you (guarantees) of peace besides restraining their hands, seize them and slay them wherever ye get them: In their case We have provided you with a clear argument against them. (YUSUF ALI Translation, Quran 4:89-91)

When we read it in context, verse 4:89 is NOT to those “who join a group between whom and you there is a treaty (of peace), or those who approach you with hearts restraining them from fighting you as well as fighting their own people.” This verse is only referring to those “withdraw not from you nor give you (guarantees) of peace besides restraining their hands”.

Dr. Muzammil H. Siddiqi says with regards to this verse:

“Now tell me honestly, do these verses give a free permission to kill any one anywhere? These verses were revealed by God to Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), at the time when Muslims were attacked by the non-Muslims of Makkah on a regular basis. They were frightening the Muslim community of Madinah. One may say using the contemporary jargon that there were constant terrorist attacks on Madinah and in this situation Muslims were given permission to fight back the “terrorist”. These verses are not a permission for “terrorism” but they are a warning against the “terrorists.” But even in these warnings you can see how much restraint and care is emphasized.”

Therefore, it is clear that the verse only allows self-defence against those who “withdraw not from you nor give you (guarantees) of peace besides restraining their hands”. Naturally, it would be necessary for the enemies to withdraw and make peace in order to achieve peace. Verse is not referring to “those who join a group between whom and you there is a treaty (of peace), or those who approach you with hearts restraining them from fighting you as well as fighting their own people”.

In “…withdraw not from you nor give you (guarantees) of peace besides restraining their hands”, it is obviously necessary to give guarantees of peace or form a treaty in addition to stop fighting. Otherwise, anyone can pretend to be “restraining their hands” when they are weak, and when they are strong again they come back and attack again. Thus to make it official Quran says to give you (guarantees) of peace, and not act as two-faced.

4:95
We have already discussed 4:89, now lets look at 4:95. Common translation amongst the critics of this verse (poorly translated) is:

Qur’an 4:95 Not equal are those believers who sit at home and receive no injurious hurt, and those who strive hard, fighting Jihad in God’s Cause with their wealth and lives. God has granted a rank higher to those who strive hard, fighting Jihad with their wealth and bodies to those who sit (at home). Unto each has God promised good, but He prefers Jihadists who strive hard and fight above those who sit home. He has distinguished his fighters with a huge reward.

Now let’s examine this verse in the light of another common translation:

O ye who believe! When ye go forth (to fight) in the way of Allah, be careful to discriminate, and say not unto one who offereth you peace: “Thou art not a believer,” seeking the chance profits of this life (so that ye may despoil him). With Allah are plenteous spoils. Even thus (as he now is) were ye before; but Allah hath since then been gracious unto you. Therefore take care to discriminate. Allah is ever Informed of what ye do. Those of the believers who sit still, other than those who have a (disabling) hurt, are not on an equality with those who strive in the way of Allah with their wealth and lives. Allah hath conferred on those who strive with their wealth and lives a rank above the sedentary. Unto each Allah hath promised good, but He hath bestowed on those who strive a great reward above the sedentary; (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 4:94-95)

The verse is stating One who strive in the path of God with lives and wealth are not equal to those who do not, which is logical. Accurate translations make no mention of “Jihadists” and killing as poor translations indicate. Once again, critics take advantage of inaccurate translations. Also 4:94 prevents killing of innocents as it says “…be careful to discriminate, and say not unto one who offereth you peace: “Thou art not a believer,” seeking the chance profits of this life…”

47:4
If read with good translation and historical context in mind, no significant complaint can be found about 47:4. However, some non-muslims insist on using a very poor translation of Quran with additions. One such translation reads:

Qur’an 47:4 So, when you clash with the unbelieving Infidels in battle, smite their necks until you overpower them, killing and wounding many of them. At length, when you have thoroughly subdued them, bind them firmly, making (them) captives. Thereafter either generosity or ransom until the war lays down its burdens. Thus are you commanded by God to continue carrying out Jihad against the unbelieving infidels until they submit to Islam .

However, almost all of the major translations are contrary to the above translation. Yusuf Ali’s translation reads:

Therefore, when ye meet the Unbelievers (in fight), smite at their necks; At length, when ye have thoroughly subdued them, bind a bond firmly (on them): thereafter (is the time for) either generosity or ransom: Until the war lays down its burdens. Thus (are ye commanded): but if it had been Allah’s Will, He could certainly have exacted retribution from them (Himself); but (He lets you fight) in order to test you, some with others. But those who are slain in the Way of Allah,- He will never let their deeds be lost. (Yusuf Ali Translation, Quran 47:4)

Further translations can be checked out here. Nowhere does the accurate translations make any mention of 1)”killing and wounding” 2) “Thus are you commanded by God to continue carrying out Jihad against the unbelieving infidels until they submit to Islam”, those are additions of the translator’s and are not to be found in Quran.

According to Professor Shahul Hameed (http://www.islamonline.net/askaboutislam/display.asp?hquestionID=8922), historical context of this verse is Battle of Badr. He writes:

“The context of this verse was when the Muslims were to fight their enemies for their very existence. After thirteen years of endurance and patience, the prophet and his companions had to leave their home town of Makkah and to emigrate to Madinah. When the people of Madinah had welcomed him there and he was accepted as a leader there, the Makkans became unhappy. They wanted to eliminate Muhammad and his religion; and so they sent their army to root out Islam. And the crucial battle took place in Badr.”

Once again, the context is of war here and therefore killing of innocent people is not prescribed. Naturally, in war people would be expected to fight and kill, therefore “smite at their necks” is only natural.

33:23
Another poor translation of this verse commonly seen reads:
Qur’an 33:23 Among the Believers are men who have been true to their covenant with God and have gone out for Jihad (holy fighting ). Some have completed their vow to extreme and have been martyred fighting and dying in His Cause, and some are waiting, prepared for death in battle.

More accurate and common translation reads:
Among the Believers are men who have been true to their covenant with Allah: of them some have completed their vow (to the extreme), and some (still) wait: but they have never changed (their determination) in the least: (YUSUF ALI Translation, Quran 33.23)

Critics have included “fighting and dying”, “prepared for death in battle” and their own interpretation to the verse. Ibn Kathir writes:

“When Allah mentions how the hypocrites broke their promise to Him that they would not turn their backs, He describes the believers as firmly adhering to their covenant and their promise:
([they] have been true to their covenant with Allah; of them some have fulfilled their Nahbah;) Some of [the Qur’anic commentators] said: “Met their appointed time (i.e., death).” Al-Bukhari said, “Their covenant, and refers back to the beginning of the Ayah.
(and some of them are still waiting, but they have never changed in the least.) means, they have never changed or broken their covenant with Allah. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir)”

It is clear, when read in proper translation, that the verse does not promote killing of innocents at all.

2:217-218
Verse states:
They ask thee concerning fighting in the Prohibited Month. Say: “Fighting therein is a grave (offence); but graver is it in the sight of Allah to prevent access to the path of Allah, to deny Him, to prevent access to the Sacred Mosque, and drive out its members.” Tumult and oppression are worse than slaughter. Nor will they cease fighting you until they turn you back from your faith if they can. And if any of you Turn back from their faith and die in unbelief, their works will bear no fruit in this life and in the Hereafter; they will be companions of the Fire and will abide therein. Those who believed and those who suffered exile and fought (and strove and struggled) in the path of Allah,- they have the hope of the Mercy of Allah: And Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. (YUSUF ALI Translation, Quran 2:217-218)

The context of these verses refers to an expedition of a group of the companions of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), under the lead of Abdullah bin Jahsh Asadi. The companions recognized a caravan from the Quraysh. Since the Quraysh had openly declared war on the Muslims and had persecuted them to the extent that they drove them out of their homes, and stole their property, the companions present, felt that they could retaliate. They killed one man of from the caravan, and took two as prisoners. When they returned to Madinah, the Prophet Muhammad disapproved of their attack during the Holy Month. But God revealed this verse as a reminder to the Muslims that while killing in the Holy Month was bad, persecution and expelling people from their homes because of their faith is far worse. So the verses make it very clear that in the face of the terrorist attacks of the polytheists, the Muslims should be brave and steadfast and turn to God for help rather than giving in and leaving the truth.

Shaykh Safiur Rahman Al-Mubarakpuri (Al-Mubarakpuri, Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum; Riyadh-Saudi Arabia, Dar-us-Salam Publications, 1996; pp. 205-206)writes on verse 2:217:

The Words of Allah were quite clear and said that the tumult created by the polytheists was groundless. The sacred inviolable sanctities repeatedly violated in the long process of fighting Islam and persecuting its adherents. The wealth of the Muslims as well as their homes had already been violated and their Prophet s.a.w.s. had been the target of repeated attempts on his life…Shortly afterwards, the two captives were released and blood money (compensation) was given to the killed man’s father. (fn. For details see Zad Al-Ma’ad, 2/83-85; Ibn Hisham, 1/605; Rahmat-ul-lil’alameen, 1/115. 2/468.) (Al-Mubarakpuri, Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum; Riyadh-Saudi Arabia, Dar-us-Salam Publications, 1996; pp. 205-206, emphasis added)

2:244
2:244 Fight in God’s Cause, and know that God hears and knows all. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 2:244)

Verse 2:244 is informing us not to transgress limits and Allah “hears and knows all”, also fight in God’s cause which could be in reference to several things including liberation of the oppressed, meaning the helpless men and women who are yearning and praying for freedom as well as striving for all that which is good as well as doing Dawah in an appropriate manner. This does NOT refer to fighting and killing innocents. As Quran says:

Fight in the cause of Allah those who fight you, but do not transgress limits; for Allah loveth not transgressors. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 2:190)

4:76
Those who believe do battle for the cause of Allah; and those who disbelieve do battle for the cause of idols. So fight the minions of the devil. Lo! the devil’s strategy is ever weak. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 4:76)

Now, let’s read the verse in textual context:
Let those fight in the way of Allah who sell the life of this world for the other. Whoso fighteth in the way of Allah, be he slain or be he victorious, on him We shall bestow a vast reward. How should ye not fight for the cause of Allah and of the feeble among men and of the women and the children who are crying: Our Lord! Bring us forth from out this town of which the people are oppressors! Oh, give us from thy presence some protecting friend! Oh, give us from Thy presence some defender! Those who believe do battle for the cause of Allah; and those who disbelieve do battle for the cause of idols. So fight the minions of the devil. Lo! the devil’s strategy is ever weak. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 4:74-76)

Verse 4:76 is specific to those who have been oppressed. In order to help those who cannot help themselves is indeed a great deed and to shun away tyranny and help those who are weak and oppressed. Islam-critics seek to present a view of violence and hate on behalf of Quran, however, when the verse is examined carefully in a correct context, their deceit is clearly exposed.

Dr. Maher Hathout (Hathout, Jihad vs. Terrorism; US Multimedia Vera International, 2002, p.50) comments on verse 4:76 by saying:
This verse is related to the two preceding verses (see 4:74-75) where it was stated that those who fight for God’s cause would be rewarded whether they are victorious or slain. Fighting for God’s cause includes the liberation of the oppressed, meaning the helpless men and women who are yearning and praying for freedom. The believers fight for God’s cause, and the disbelievers fight for the sake of their idols. An idol may be taken conceptually. For example, evil or greed may figuratively be construed as idols. The believers should put all their trust in God the Almighty and Powerful and fear not the disbelievers and their evil plans. Evil plans are always inferior to goodness. (Hathout, Jihad vs. Terrorism; US Multimedia Vera International, 2002, p.50)

5:33
Verse states:
The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive with might and main for mischief through the land is: execution, or crucifixion, or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, or exile from the land: that is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in the Hereafter (YUSUF ALI Translation, Quran 5:34)

The verse before and after 5:33 is not usually quoted, as 5:32 prohibits murder and 5:34 encourages forgiveness.

On that account: We ordained for the Children of Israel that if any one slew a person – unless it be for murder or for spreading mischief in the land – it would be as if he slew the whole people: and if any one saved a life, it would be as if he saved the life of the whole people. Then although there came to them Our messengers with clear signs, yet, even after that, many of them continued to commit excesses in the land. The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive with might and main for mischief through the land is: execution, or crucifixion, or the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, or exile from the land: that is their disgrace in this world, and a heavy punishment is theirs in the Hereafter; Except for those who repent before they fall into your power: in that case, know that Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. (YUSUF ALI Translation, Quran 5:32-34)

The verse mentions “The punishment of those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger, and strive with might and main for mischief through the land ” is either execution, OR crucifixion, OR the cutting off of hands and feet from opposite sides, OR exile from the land. This is the punishment for waging war against the Prophet of God and spreading corruption. Four kinds of punishment are mentioned based upon the gravity of the crime. As Muhammad F. Malik writes in his translation of this verse:

The punishment for those who wage war against Allah and His Rasool and strive to create mischief in the land is death or crucifixion or the cutting off their hands and feet from opposite sides or exile from the land (based on the gravity of their offence)… (Malik, Al-Qur’an: Guidance for Mankind)

Therefore stealing may not result in execution but cutting of hand. Similarly, killing an innocent person may not result in exile from the land but execution. Verses 5:32 and 5:34 must also be taken in consideration, which condemns killing of innocent and takes into account repentance.

9:29
Fight those who believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, nor hold that forbidden which hath been forbidden by Allah and His Messenger, nor acknowledge the religion of Truth, (even if they are) of the People of the Book, until they pay the Jizya with willing submission, and feel themselves subdued. (YUSUF ALI Translation, Quran 9:29)

This verse is referring to the Islamic Concept called “Jizya”, which Shaikh Sayed Sabiq in the Fiqh Alsunna (a commonly used source of fiqh[rulings (Fatwa) of Muslim Islamic jurists]), describes as “the underlying root of the word jizya is jaza, and defines it as “A sum of money to be put on anyone who enters the themah (protection and the treaty of the Muslims) from the people of the book“.

It is usually portrayed by certain critics that jizya is a mechanism for discriminating non-muslims in an Islamic-society. This is a common misconception; jizya is a political method dealing with finance.

One of the main pillars of Islam is called Zakat (Muslims whose wealth is above a certain limit must pay a percentage of it (in most cases 2.5%) to the poor and needy). Islam does not “force” upon non-muslims to follow one of it’s main pillar. This certainly quietens some critics who would otherwise be accusing Islam of imposing itself on them. Just like in a non-muslim society muslims pay tax, likewise non-muslims are obliged to pay certain percentage of their money to the Islamic State. It is quite hypocritical of non-muslims to criticize Jizya, whilst, in non-muslims countries muslims have to pay tax. If tax is justified then so should jizya be.

Regarding the amount of jizya Shaykh Abu’l-Hasan Al-Mawardi (d. 1058CE) writes in his book Al-Mawardi, al-Ahkam as-Sultaniyyah, Ta-Ha Publishers Ltd. 1996, pp. 209-210:

“The fuqaha (Jurists) differ as to the amount of the Jizya. Abu Hanifa considers that those subject to this tax are of three kinds: the rich from whom forty-eight dirhams are taken; those of average means from whom twenty four are taken, and the poor from whom twelve dirhams are taken: he thus stipulated the minimum and maximum amounts and prohibits any further judgement on behalf of those responsible for its collection. Malik, however, does not fix its minimum and maximum amount and considers that those responsible should make their own judgement as to the minimum and maximum. Ash-Shafi’i considers that the minimum is a dinar, and that it is not permitted to go below this while he does not stipulate the maximum, the latter being dependant on the ijtihad (judgement) of those responsible: the Imam, however, should try to harmonise between the different amounts, or to exact an amount in accordance with people’s means.”

In conclusion, this verse refers to non-muslim who doesn’t pay poll-tax in Islamic State and thus do not contribute to the financial needs of the territory. It is generally agreed by the four major Jurists that jizya money is based upon one’s income. We ought also not forget that muslims are also obliged to pay Zakat.

Some critics try to pose the conception that the verse ought to be translated as “Kill those who believe…” instead of “Fight those who believe…” They claim since the verse uses the arabic word Qateloo, which comes from the root word Qaatil. However, there is derivitive field in arabic, when prefix and suffix are added, it determines the defination of verse in context. If it meant to say kill, verse would have said uqtulo or Uqtul.

According to the Ectaco English-Arabic Online Dictionary ( http://www-old.ectaco.com), in arabic words for “Fight” are:

N مقاومة, شجار, مباراة في المِكمة, صراع, وغى, عراك, مناوشة, كفاح, نضال, مِكمة,
V حارب, قاتل, تقاتل, تبارز, كافح, ناضل, ِكم, خاض معركة, قاوم
That is taken from: http://www-old.ectaco.com/online/diction.php3?lang=3&q=1&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;refid=316&rfr_id=1&rqt_id=18192843&pagelang=23&word=fight&direction=1&x=0&y=0
Note: As the dictionary testifies one of the word for Fight is Qaatil (in a verb). Furthermore, in english, word Qaatil is translated thus:
A DEADLY, LETHAL, VITAL, MURDERED, MURDEROUS,
N KILLER, MANSLAYER, MURDERER, ASSASSIN,
V BATTLE, COMBAT, ENGAGE, FIGHT, WAR
That is taken from: http://www-old.ectaco.com/online/diction.php3?lang=3&q=5&refid=316&rfr_id=1&rqt_id=18192843&pagelang=23&word=%DE%C7%CA%E1&direction=2&x=29&y=3

So Fight indeed is a correct translation, in a context of a VERB. Also the jizya is only upon livings, dead people cannot pay money. Therefore “kill until they pay jizya” would also have logical contradictions, as killing would cause jizya to be abolished.

8:12-13 and 8:17
Anti-Islam websites quote this verse as:
“I will instill terror into the hearts of the unbelievers. Smite ye above their necks and smite all their finger tips off them. This because they contend against God and his apostle…”

Let’s read verses from 8:12-16:

When thy Lord inspired the angels, (saying): I am with you. So make those who believe stand firm. I will throw fear into the hearts of those who disbelieve. Then smite the necks and smite of them each finger. That is because they opposed Allah and His messenger. Whoso opposeth Allah and His messenger, (for him) lo! Allah is severe in punishment. That (is the award), so taste it, and (know) that for disbelievers is the torment of the Fire. O ye who believe! When ye meet those who disbelieve in battle, turn not your backs to them. Whoso on that day turneth his back to them, unless manoeuvring for battle or intent to join a company, he truly hath incurred wrath from Allah, and his habitation will be hell, a hapless journey’s end. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 8:12-16)

Hence when read in its textual context the verse is referring to smiting in the time of BATTLE. Now let’s read 8:17 which is presented in absence of 8:14-16:

Ye (Muslims) slew them not, but Allah slew them. And thou (Muhammad) threwest not when thou didst throw, but Allah threw, that He might test the believers by a fair test from Him. Lo! Allah is Hearer, Knower. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 8:12-16)

Verses 9:12-17 are in the context of Battle Of Badr. Ansar Al-‘Adl (http://www.load-islam.com/C/rebuttals/Misquoted/#16) comments on 8:12-13:
“The historical context is that this verse was revealed at the Battle of Badr, a battle in which the pagans of Makkah traveled over 200 miles to destroy the Muslims of Madinah. The Pagans of Makkah had an army of about 1000 while the Muslims were only 300 followers. The Prophet Muhammad ((peace be upon him)) and his followers had suffered severe persecutions and torture for 13 years in the city of Makkah. Having fled from Makkah to the safety of Madinah, they found that they were once again threatened.”

Al-Mubarakpuri, Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum; Riyadh-Saudi Arabia, Dar-us-Salam Publications, 1996; pp. 219-220, says:

“When the fierce engagement grew too hot he (Prophet Muhammed) again began to supplicate his Lord saying: “O Allâh! Should this group (of Muslims) be defeated today, You will no longer be worshipped.”…. Immediate was the response from Allâh, Who sent down angels from the heavens for the help and assistance of the Prophet (Peace be upon him) and his companions. The Noble Qur’ân observes:

And recall when your Lord inspired the angels: “Verily, I am with you, so keep firm those who have believed. I will cast terror into the hearts of those who have disbelieved.” [8:12]”

Furthermore, 8:19 says:
(O Qureysh!) If ye sought a judgment, now hath the judgment come unto you. And if ye cease (from persecuting the believers) it will be better for you, but if ye return (to the attack) We also shall return. And your host will avail you naught, however numerous it be, and (know) that Allah is with the believers (in His Guidance). (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 8:19)

It is obvious from historical and textual context therefore that the verse in no sense promote killing of innocents. Verse 8:19 reaches out a hand of peace towards the Qureysh despite their aggression.

5:51
Translation of PICKTHAL is usually quoted:
O ye who believe! Take not the Jews and the Christians for friends. They are friends one to another. He among you who taketh them for friends is (one) of them. Lo! Allah guideth not wrongdoing folk. (PICKTHAL Translation Quran 5:51)

The arabic word Awliya used in 5:51 is mistranslated by PICKTHAL and other major translators. More accurate translation of the word Awliya would be “Protector” , “allies” or “intimate friends”. Dr. Muzammil Siddiqi says regarding this on http://www.islamonline.net/fatwa/english/FatwaDisplay.asp?hFatwaID=8886 :

“In the verse you quoted, the word “Awliya” is used. It is a plural and its singular is “wali”. The correct translation of the word “”wali”” is not “friend” but it is someone who is very close and intimate. It is also used to mean “guardian, protector, patron, lord and master.”

In addition, according to Ectaco Online Dictionary ( http://www-old.ectaco.com), root word of Awliya (Al-wali الولي) means:

N PROTECTOR

This is taken from: http://www-old.ectaco.com/online/diction.php3?lang=3&q=2&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;refid=316&rfr_id=3752827&rqt_id=19196640&pagelang=23&word=%C7%E1%E6%E1%ED&direction=2&x=53&y=11

Whilst according to the same dictionary words for friends in arabic are:
N صديق, رفيق, زميل, نصير, الصاحبي عضو من جماعة المهتزين, الرفيق,
V صادق, آزر

This is taken from:
http://www-old.ectaco.com/online/diction.php3?lang=3&amp;amp;amp;amp;q=3&refid=316&rfr_id=3752827&rqt_id=19196640&pagelang=23&word=friend&direction=1&x=39&y=8

Al-Wali and awliya are NOT mentioned in the above list of friends.

However, according to it one of the word for protector in arabic is الولي (the wali):

N الحامي, المدافع, الولي, النصير, الواقية أداة للوقاية من اّذى, الوصي على العرش

This is taken from: http://www-old.ectaco.com/online/diction.php3?lang=3&q=5&amp;amp;amp;amp;amp;refid=316&rfr_id=3752827&rqt_id=19196640&pagelang=23&word=protector&direction=1&x=33&y=12

Allah says that Allah alone is the Auliya (in a sense of a protector):
The likeness of those who take Auliyâ’ (protectors and helpers) other than Allâh is as the likeness of a spider, who builds (for itself) a house, but verily, the frailest (weakest) of houses is the spider’s house; if they but knew. (Al-‘Ankabut 29:41)

Or have they taken (for worship) Auliyâ’ (guardians, supporters, helpers, protectors, etc.) besides Him? But Allâh, He Alone is the Walî (Protector, etc.). And it is He Who gives life to the dead, and He is Able to do all things. (Ash-Shura 42:9)

The word Auliya is also used as a substitiotion for God/Lord:

Say (O Muhammad SAW): “Who is the Lord of the heavens and the earth?” Say: “(It is) Allâh.” Say: “Have you then taken (for worship) Auliyâ’ (protectors, etc.) other than Him, such as have no power either for benefit or for harm to themselves?” Say: “Is the blind equal to the one who sees? Or darkness equal to light? Or do they assign to Allâh partners who created the like of His creation, so that the creation (which they made and His creation) seemed alike to them.” Say: “Allâh is the Creator of all things, He is the One, the Irresistible.” (Ra’d 13:16)

Do then those who disbelieve think that they can take My slaves [i.e., the angels, Allâh’s Messengers, ‘Iesa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary), etc.] as Auliyâ’ (lords, gods, protectors, etc.) besides Me? Verily, We have prepared Hell as an entertainment for the disbelievers (in the Oneness of Allâh Islâmic Monotheism). (Al-Kahf 18:102)

Verily, they can avail you nothing against Allâh (if He wants to punish you). Verily, the Zâlimûn (polytheists, wrong-doers, etc.) are Auliyâ’ (protectors, helpers, etc.) to one another, but Allâh is the Walî (Helper, Protector, etc.) of the Muttaqûn (pious – see V.2:2). (Al-Jathiyah 45:19)

Or have they taken (for worship) Auliyâ’ (guardians, supporters, helpers, protectors, etc.) besides Him? But Allâh, He Alone is the Walî (Protector, etc.). And it is He Who gives life to the dead, and He is Able to do all things. (Ash-Shura 42:9)

Surely, the religion (i.e. the worship and the obedience) is for Allâh only. And those who take Auliyâ’ (protectors and helpers) besides Him (say): “We worship them only that they may bring us near to Allâh.” Verily, Allâh will judge between them concerning that wherein they differ. Truly, Allâh guides not him who is a liar, and a disbeliever. (Az-Zumar 39:3)

9:111
Verses 9:111-112 states:
Allah hath purchased of the believers their persons and their goods; for theirs (in return) is the garden (of Paradise): they fight in His cause, and slay and are slain: a promise binding on Him in truth, through the Law, the Gospel, and the Qur’an: and who is more faithful to his covenant than Allah? then rejoice in the bargain which ye have concluded: that is the achievement supreme. Those that turn (to Allah) in repentance; that serve Him, and praise Him; that wander in devotion to the cause of Allah,: that bow down and prostrate themselves in prayer; that enjoin good and forbid evil; and observe the limit set by Allah;- (These do rejoice). So proclaim the glad tidings to the Believers. (YUSUF ALI Translation, Quran 9:111-112)

As we read in Quran limits set by Allah are: “Fight in the cause of Allah those who fight you, but do not transgress limits; for Allah loveth not transgressors.” (Yusuf Ali Translation, Quran 2:190).

Thus in the light of 2:190 it can be easily understood that the verse teaches self-defence in a form of a physical jihad (striving in the path of Allah). Let us also remember the rest of context of Chapter 9, which we have discussed before in 9:5 and 9:29.

2) Exposing the Hypocrisy of Jews And Christian And Jews
It is quite hypocritical of non-muslims to quote verses from Quran out of context or to mistranslate them. Some non-muslims are under the impression that their holy book does not even speak of self-defence or war! If I am to quote certain verses, I would be blamed of misquoting and taking things out of context, if that act is so disgraceful then why do certain non-muslim persist on misquoting Quran?

Here is a sample of some such verses, these are from KJV unless states otherwise:

“Thus saith the LORD of hosts, I remember that which Amalek did to Israel, how he laid wait for him in the way, when he came up from Egypt. Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.” (I Samuel 15:2-3)

NOTE: One might ask what crimes have the poor infant, sucking and animals have done?

“And to the others he said in mine hearing, Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity: Slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and woman: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the ancient men which were before the house.” (Ezekiel 9:5-6)

“Behold, these caused the children of Israel, through the counsel of Balaam, to commit trespass against the LORD in the matter of Peor, and there was a plague among the congregation of the LORD. Now therefore kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman that hath known man by lying with him. But all the women children, that have not known a man by lying with him, keep alive for yourselves.” (Numbers 31:16-18)

“And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the sword.” (Joshua 6:21)

“Ye shall utterly destroy all the places, wherein the nations which ye shall possess served their gods, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every green tree: And ye shall overthrow their altars, and break their pillars, and burn their groves with fire; and ye shall hew down the graven images of their gods, and destroy the names of them out of that place.” (Deuteronomy 12:2-3)

“All who would not seek the LORD, the God of Israel, were to be put to death, whether small or great, man or woman.” (From the NIV Bible, 2 Chronicles 15:13)

“Every one that is found shall be thrust through; and every one that is joined unto them shall fall by the sword. Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be spoiled, and their wives ravished.” (Isaiah 13:15-16)

“And he brought out the people that were in it, and cut them with saws, and with harrows of iron, and with axes…” (I Chronicles 20:3)

“And we took all his cities at that time, and utterly destroyed the men, and the women, and the little ones, of every city, we left none to remain.” (Deuteronomy 2:34)

“And we utterly destroyed them, as we did unto Sihon king of Hesbon, utterly destroying the men, women, and children, of every city. But all the cattle, and the spoil of the cities we took for a prey to ourselves.” (Deuteronomy 3:6-7)

“Either three years’ famine; or three months to be destroyed before thy foes, while that the sword of thine enemies overtaketh thee; or else three days the sword of the LORD, even the pestilence, in the land, and the angel of the LORD destroying throughout all the coasts of Israel…” (I Chronicles 21:12)

“And he smote the men of Bethshemesh, because they had looked into the ark of the LORD, even he smote of the people fifty thousand and threescore and ten men: and the people lamented, because the LORD had smitten many of the people with a great slaughter.” (I Samuel 6:19)

“Thou shalt surely smite the inhabitants of that city with the edge of the sword, destroying it utterly, and all that is therein, and the cattle thereof, with the edge of the sword.” (Deuteronomy 13:15)

But of the cities of these people, which the LORD thy God doth give thee for an inheritance, thou shalt save alive nothing that breatheth: But thou shalt utterly destroy them; namely, the Hittites, and the Amorites, the Canaanites, and the Perizzites, the Hivites, and the Jebusites; as the LORD thy God hath commanded thee: (Deuteronomy 20:16-17)

“And he brought forth the people that were therein, and put them under saws, and under harrows of iron, and under the axes of iron, and made them pass through the brickkiln: and thus did he unto all the cities of the children of Ammon. So David and all the people returned unto Jerusalem.” (II Samuel 12:31)

“Every one that is found shall be thrust through; and every one that is joined unto them shall fall by the sword. Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes; their houses shall be spoiled, and their wives ravished.” (Isaiah 13:15-16)

“And we took all his cities at that time, and utterly destroyed the men, and the women, and the little ones, of every city, we left none to remain.” (Deuteronomy 2:34)

“And we utterly destroyed them, as we did unto Sihon king of Hesbon, utterly destroying the men, women, and children, of every city. But all the cattle, and the spoil of the cities we took for a prey to ourselves.” (Deuteronomy 3:6-7)

“Happy shall he be, that taketh and dasheth thy little ones against the stones.” (Psalms 137:9, KJV)

“I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.” (Isaiah 45:7)

“How blessed will be the one who seizes and dashes your little ones Against the rock.” (Psalms 137:9, New American Bible)

“Samaria shall become desolate; for she hath rebelled against her God: they shall fall by the sword: their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up.” (Hosea 13:16)

“a blessing on anyone who seizes your babies and shatters them against a rock!” (Psalms 137:9, Jerusalem Bible)

The LORD is a man of war: the LORD is his name.” (Exodus 15:3)

If a man happens to meet a virgin who is not pledged to be married and rapes her and they are discovered, he shall pay the girl’s father fifty shekels of silver. He must marry the girl, for he has violated her. He can never divorce her as long as he lives. (From the NIV Bible, Deuteronomy 22:28-29)”

There are many other examples. Now, let’s examine certain quotes of Jesus:

“If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple.” (Luke 14:26)

“Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man’s foes shall be they of his own household.” (Matthew 10:34-37)

“I am come to send fire on the earth; and what will I, if it be already kindled?” (Luke 12:49)

“Suppose ye that I am come to give peace on earth? I tell you, Nay; but rather division: For from henceforth there shall be five in one house divided, three against two, and two against three. The father shall be divided against the son, and the son against the father; the mother against the daughter, and the daughter against the mother; the mother in law against her daughter in law, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.” (Luke 12:51-53)

“But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me.” (Luke 19:27)

“Then said he unto them, But now, he that hath a purse, let him take it, and likewise his scrip: and he that hath no sword, let him sell his garment, and buy one”. (Luke 22:36)

Providing accurate picture of Islam — Quran preaches peace
Unsurprisingly, Islam-critic shy away from posting verses of the Quran, which preaches peace. By bombarding verses out of their context or using dubious translations they seek to give the impression that a book such as Quran leaves no place for peace.

Can muslim and non-muslim co-exist?
One of the common misconception is that Quran teaches that either non-muslim must be forced to become muslim or they must be put to death. They justify themselves by misquoting verses, most of which we have discussed in this article. Now, let’s examine what Quran really says, does Quran allow non-muslim to keep their religion? One whole chapter is dedicated in Quran to this topic called Surah Kafiroon (Chapter THE DISBELIEVERS):

Say: O disbelievers! I worship not that which ye worship; Nor worship ye that which I worship. And I shall not worship that which ye worship. Nor will ye worship that which I worship. Unto you your religion, and unto me my religion. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 109:1-6)

The chapter gives crystal-clear evidence of “let and let live”. Quran states “Unto you your religion, and unto me my religion”. Thus no enforcement of religion by sword or otherwise is suggested in Islam. Furthermore, Quran says that there is no compulsion in religion; non-muslims do not have to become muslims against their wishes:

There is no compulsion in religion. The right direction is henceforth distinct from error. And he who rejecteth false deities and believeth in Allah hath grasped a firm handhold which will never break. Allah is Hearer, Knower. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 2:256)

Does Quran not say kill (innocent) non-believers?
Murder is a grave sin in Islam, Quran says in 5:32:

For that cause We decreed for the Children of Israel that whosoever killeth a human being for other than manslaughter or corruption in the earth, it shall be as if he had killed all mankind, and whoso saveth the life of one, it shall be as if he had saved the life of all mankind. Our messengers came unto them of old with clear proofs (of Allah’s Sovereignty), but afterwards lo! many of them became prodigals in the earth. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 5:32)

As Quran points out killing an innocent being is like killing an entire humanity, which naturally leaves no place for killing innocents. It must be pointed out that Quran states “…whosoever killeth a human being…”, thus referring to a human being and not simply restricted to muslims.

Quran also says:
And slay not the life which Allah hath forbidden save with right. Whoso is slain wrongfully, We have given power unto his heir, but let him not commit excess in slaying. Lo! he will be helped. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 17:33)

Quran emphasises not to slay unjustly!

Does Quran not states to hate non-muslims and treat them unjustly?
This is another common misconception, Quran itself describes how ought a muslim to a treat non-muslims:

Allah forbids you not, with regard to those who fight you not for (your) Faith nor drive you out of your homes, from dealing kindly and justly with them: for Allah loveth those who are just. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 60:8)

Quran states to deal KINDLY and JUSTLY with those who don’t fight us. It does not only order muslims “not to live and let live” but to even go a step further in living peacefully and deal with them kindly and justly.

Another verse says:
O ye who believe! Be steadfast witnesses for Allah in equity, and let not hatred of any people seduce you that ye deal not justly. Deal justly, that is nearer to your duty. Observe your duty to Allah. Lo! Allah is Informed of what ye do. Allah hath promised those who believe and do good works: Theirs will be forgiveness and immense reward. (PICKTHAL Translation, Quran 5:8-9)

Allah emphasises not to let hatred of people prevent them from upholding justice.

Does Quran not say to wage war with non-muslims for any reason possible?
Quran states:

To those against whom war is made, permission is given (to fight), because they are wronged;– and verily, Allah is most powerful for their aid;- (They are) those who have been expelled from their homes in defiance of right,- (for no cause) except that they say, “our Lord is Allah”. Did not Allah check one set of people by means of another, there would surely have been pulled down monasteries, churches, synagogues, and mosques, in which the name of Allah is commemorated in abundant measure. Allah will certainly aid those who aid his (cause);- for verily Allah is full of Strength, Exalted in Might, (able to enforce His Will). (YUSUF ALI Translation, Quran 22:39-40)

There are reasons for which permission of war is given is mentioned in the verse as those have been wronged and “expelled from their homes in defiance of right” because they are muslim. Quran also calls upon it’s followers not to transgress limits:

Fight in the cause of Allah those who fight you, but do not transgress limits; for Allah loveth not transgressors. (YUSUF ALI Translation, Quran 2:190)

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Why did Prophet Muhammed Marry Aisha At a Young Age? Is that Morally Right? What about Paedophilia?

December 17, 2007

Age of Marriage in the light of Authentic Hadiths
Prophet’s Marriage to Aisha is becoming a famous topic amongst the critics of Islam. Whilst discussing this, they completely ignore the traditions at the time and the fruits the blessed marriage brought. In this article we will be exploring the reasons behind the marriage as well as affirming that Prophet Muhammed was not a paedophile. First of all let’s examine the proof from Islamic sources regarding marriage to Aisha (RA):
“Narrated ‘Aisha:

that the Prophet married her when she was six years old and he consummated his marriage when she was nine years old, and then she remained with him for nine years (i.e., till his death) Sahih Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 62, Number 64)”From the hadith it is confirmed that engagement was done when Aisha (RA) was 6 and then marriage was consummated when she was 9 years old. It must be noted that the marriage was extremely successful as it is evident from countless hadiths. Indeed, from a Muslim’s perspective the marriage was divine:

“Narrated ‘Aisha:Allah’s Apostle said (to me), “You have been shown to me twice in (my) dreams. A man was carrying you in a silken cloth and said to me, ‘This is your wife.’ I uncovered it; and behold, it was you. I said to myself, ‘If this dream is from Allah, He will cause it to come true.’ “” (

Sahih Bukhari,Volume 7, Book 62, Number 15)

Age of Marriage in the Old Ages
Morality is relative not absolute, it varies from culture to culture and society to society. What is perceived to be moral in USA may not hold to be true in other parts of the world, such as Africa and Asia. Morality is also relative to time, fornication/dating little time ago was regarded as taboo and a matter of shame for the family. However, now this is a common habit, dating could start as early as at the age of 10. Another example would be dress code, which was very modest in history but not so now.
Therefore, we need to analyse the age of marriage in history and judge Prophet’s marriage from there. Historically, the age at which a girl was considered ready to be married was puberty; this also was the case in biblical times. In an article called “Ancient Israelite Marriage Customs“, by Jim West, ThD – a Baptist minister writes:

“The wife was to be taken from within the larger family circle (usually at the outset of puberty or around the age of 13) in order to maintain the purity of the family line;”

While discussing the meaning of the word ‘almah, which is the Hebrew word for “young woman” or “adolescent female”, Gerald Segal, in his book “The Jew and the Christian Missionary”, Ktav Publishing House,1981, page 28 says:

“It should be noted, however, that in biblical times females married at an early age.” The Campaign To Raise The Age Of Consent, 1885-1994 (http://womhist.binghamton.edu/teacher/aoc.htm

)[note the education domain] states:“American reformers were shocked to discover that the laws of most states set the age of consent at the age of ten or twelve, and in one state, Delaware, the age of consent was only seven.” Thus it was a norm to be married at a young age. This is why the people of Quraish and other Arabian tribes at Prophet’s time found absolutely no fault in their marriage. On the contrary it is evident from countless narrations that the marriage was successful. They detested Islam, they did everything to belittle the Prophet, tried to prevent Islam from spreading and even attempted to kill the Prophet! However, they raised no objection to the marriage of the Prophet to Aisha since at those times such a thing was not considered ‘immoral’.

Nabia Abbott, who is a western female orientalist and has written many anti-islam materials, writes in her book Aishah-The Beloved of Mohammed, Al-Saqi Books, London, 1985, page 7:

“It is not clear just when the marriage actually took place. According to some versions, it was in the month of Shawwal of the Year 1, that is, some seven or eight months after the arrival at Medina; but, according to others, it was not until after the Battle of Badr, that is, in Shawwal of the second year of the Hijrah. In no version is there any comment made on the disparity of the ages between Mohammed and Aishah or on the tender age of the bride who, at the most, could not have been over ten years old and who was still much enamoured with her play.”

Even in our times in certain parts of the world the age of marriage is still relatively low. According to a chart on (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Age_of_consent#Ages_of_consent_in_various_countries ) the age of consent in Mexico and Philippines is only 12. In Guyana, Japan, South Korea, Spain and Swaziland the age of consent is 13. Hence even in ‘Today’s Times’ a young marriage is not abnormal, as some in the west think.

Should the people of United Kingdom, where the age limit is higher, be correct in slandering the people of Philippines/Mexico where the age limit is much lower and thus married at young age? Of course not! Or if within few centuries the age of marriage rises up to 20, then should those people have a right to slander those who lived at our times and married before 20? By the same token, we should not criticize the marriage of the Prophet based on the norm of our time.

It ought also be noted that Aisha ( RA) was engaged to Jubayr son of Mut’im before Prophet Muhammed. This indicates the age of marriage and engagement in Prophet’s time. However, the engagement was later nullified by Jubayr’s parents due to Abu Bakr (RA) embracing Islam. This can be read in detail on http://www.witness-pioneer.org/vil/Articles/companion/02_abu_bakr.htm#Holy%20Prophet

Thus the history demonstrates that the age of the marriage was lower and relative to olden times, the marriage of the Prophet was not abnormal and there was nothing immoral about it. It was a norm at biblical times to be wedded at puberty or earlier, the age of consent one century ago in a ‘modern country’ was as low as 10 or 12, even 7 in Delaware! Even in our times, in certain societies, the age of consent is as low as 12 or 13. In the light of historical evidences, the marriage cannot be criticized.

Age of Puberty, can a 9 year old be mature enough?
Age of puberty varies however in woman it is generally reached earlier. “The average temperature of the country or province,” say the well-known authors of the book Woman (Herman H. Ploss, Max Bartels and Paul Bartels, Woman, Volume I, Lord & Bransby, 1988, page 563.), “is considered the chief factor here, not only with regard to menstruation but as regards the whole of sexual development at puberty.”

Puberty in Girls (http://www.population.health.wa.gov.au/Communicable/Resources/2107%20PubertyinGirls.pdf) by an Australian government Public Health organization, says:

“The first sign of puberty is usually a surge of growth: you become taller; your breasts develop; hair begins to grow in the pubic area and under the arms. This may start from 10 years to 14 years – even earlier for some and later for others.”

According to MedlinePlus Medical Encyclopaedia (http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/001168.htm
):
“Precocious puberty is premature development of body characteristics that normally occur during puberty. (Puberty is the period in life when the body changes rapidly and develops reproductive capability). Puberty normally occurs between 13 and 15 years old in boys, and between 9 and 16 years old in girls. In girls, precocious puberty is when any of the following develop before 8 years of age:

  • Breasts
  • Armpit or pubic hair
  • Mature external genitalia
  • First menstruation”

Indeed, there have been many cases of early puberty. For instance, Lina Medina gave birth at the age of 5 years, 7 months and 21 days. Encyclopaedia Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lina_Medina ) says:

“Lina Medina (born September 27, 1933 in Paurange, Peru) gave birth at the age of 5 years, 7 months and 21 days and is the youngest confirmed mother in medical history. This world record is closely followed by a similar case in Russia.”

When Aisha had reached puberty the marriage was consummated, as Karen Armstrong writes in her book Muhammad: A Biography of the Prophet, Harper San Francisco, 1992, page 157:

“Tabari says that she was so young that she stayed in her parents’ home and the marriage was consummated there later when she had reached puberty.
Therefore it is not surprising if Aisha (RA) reached puberty at an early age. The marriage was consummated when Aisha (RA) reached puberty. Her maturity from ahadiths certainly dictates this. In addition, let us not forget that in olden times, marriage at puberty was nothing strange.

Vital Benefits of the Marriage

In addition, Aisha (RA) was exceedingly intelligent and had a formidable memory. She had profound knowledge of Quran and Sunnah She narrated over 2,000 hadith (at least 2,210). Abdul-Hamîd Siddiqî writes in a book entitled Sahih muslim (English-translation of Sahih Muslim, Volume 2, International Islamic Publishing House, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, page 715.):

“She [Aisha] developed into a spiritual teacher and scholar, since she was remarkably intelligent and wise. Her qualities help support the Prophet’s work and further the cause of Islam. Aishah, the Mother of the Believers, was not only a model for wives and mothers, but she was also a commentator on the Qur’ân, an authority on hadîth and knowledgeable in Islamic Law. She narrated at least 2,210 ahâdîth that give Muslims valuable insights into the Final Prophet’s daily life and behaviour, thus preserving the Sunnah of Muhammad(P).”

Abu Musa al-Ash’ari says: “Never had we (the companions) had any difficulty for the solution of which we approached Aisha and did not get some useful information from her”. — Sirat-I-Aisha, on the authority of Trimidhi, p. 163.

Thus the contribution of Aisha was vital, without her perhaps much of the sunnah would have been lost. In addition the marriage also refuted the notion that a man could not marry the daughter of a man who he had declared to be his “brother” (even in the religious sense). Since the Prophet and Abu Bakr had declared each other to be “brothers”, this notion was done away with. This is demonstrated in the following hadith:

“Narrated ‘Ursa:
The Prophet asked Abu Bakr for ‘Aisha’s hand in marriage. Abu Bakr said “But I am your brother.” The Prophet said, “You are my brother in Allah’s religion and His Book, but she (Aisha) is lawful for me to marry.”” (Sahih Bukhari, Volume 7, Book 62, Number 18)

This is another teaching, which the marriage portrayed. The marriage also strengthened the relationship between Abu Bakr and Prophet Muhammed. Let us bear in mind that Abu Bakr was the first Caliph.

Paedophilia and lust for women?

According to Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1998, definition of Paedophile is:

“Pedophile: also spelled PAEDOPHILIA, psychosexual disorder in which an adult’s arousal and sexual gratification occur primarily through sexual contact with prepubescent children. The typical paedophile is unable to find satisfaction in an adult sexual relationship and may have low self-esteem, seeing sexual activity with a child as less threatening than that with an adult.” Encyclopaedia Britannica, 1998.

Apart from Aisha, all his wives were more than 16 (The Prophet of Islam, the Ideal Husband (Lahore: Kazi Publications), pp. 10-12), which at those times was considered as a mature age. Indeed, his first wife was twice widowed before and was older than him by 15 years. All his wives except Aisha and Marya were widows. Therefore, it is evident that Prophet’s marriage with Aisha was not a norm and Prophet did indeed find adult relationship. Prophet also did not have low self-esteem, as it is evident from his Seerah.


In addition, Harold I. Kaplan et al. (Synopsis of Psychiatry, 5th ed. [Williams and Wilkens, 1988], p. 360) writes:

“In addition to their paedophilia, a significant number of paedophiles are concomitantly or have previously been involved in exhibitionism, voyeurism, or rape“. (Voyeurism is the recurrent preoccupation with fantasised or acts that involve seeking out or observing people who are naked, or are engaged in grooming or in sexual activity).

It is commonly accepted by Muslims and non-muslims (un-biased) that Prophet in no sense indulged in “exhibitionism, voyeurism, or rape” or even came close to it. There is not a single reference to indicate that prophet was involved in any such act. In addition, Prophet waited for Aisha to mature and reach Puberty before the marriage was consummated, this obviously is contrary to the characteristics of a paedophile.


Hypocrisy of Jews & Christians

It is quite hypocritical of Jews and Christian to criticize the marriage of Aisha. Talmud (Jewish scripture) says:

“Marrying off one’s daughter as soon after she reaches adulthood as possible, even to one’s Slave. (From the Talmud, Pesachim 113a)”

As we discussed, in biblical times adulthood could refer to the age of Puberty or even younger age.

Regarding the Marriage of Mary to Joseph, Catholic Encyclopaedia ( http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/08504a.htm), says:

“When forty years of age, Joseph married a woman called Melcha or Escha by some, Salome by others; they lived forty-nine years together and had six children, two daughters and four sons, the youngest of whom was James (the Less, “the Lord’s brother”). A year after his wife’s death, as the priests announced through Judea that they wished to find in the tribe of Juda a respectable man to espouse Mary, then twelve to fourteen years of age, Joseph, who was at the time ninety years old, went up to Jerusalem among the candidates; a miracle manifested the choice God had made of Joseph, and two years later the Annunciation took place.”

Note: That article on Catholic Encyclopaedia obtains its information from early

Christian writing including apocryphal writings.

The Catholic Encyclopaedia goes on to conclude “…retained the belief that St. Joseph was an old man at the time of marriage with the Mother of God.” If Christians do not find any difficulty in accepting “Mother of God” (according to Catholic Encyclopaedia), who was 12-14, marrying a 90 year old man then why do they raise objection towards the marriage of Aisha (RA) to the Prophet?


Consent of Aisha’s Family
Let us not forget that marriage was willingly consented by Abu Bakr. If there had been anything wrong with the marriage, Abu Bakr would have objected. If the father of Aisha found no fault with the marriage then why should people 1400 years later raise objections? Naturally, Abu Bakr must have had the best interests in his heart for his daughter.

Brief Summary

History demonstrates that the age of marriage was low, in olden times women married when they reached puberty or even earlier. Even in USA, a century ago, age of consent was low, 7 in Delaware, even Today in some countries like Mexico and Philippines, age of consent is as low as 12. It should not be too astonishing to find therefore that Aisha was mature enough, as the medical evidences states that puberty can occur at the age of 9.

Aisha allowed the sunnah to be preserved and has quoted over 2,000 hadiths, thus playing a vital role for Islam. The marriage also refuted the Arab notion that a man cannot marry the daughter of a man who he had declared to be his “brother” (even in the religious sense). In addition, the marriage also strengthened the relationship between Prophet Muhammed and Abu Bakr [Companion of Prophet Muhammed and First Caliph). Prophet does not fulfil the characteristics of a Paedophile. Let us not forget that Prophet waited 3 years before the marriage with Aisha was consummated and that all his other wives were older than 16. It is quite hypocritical of Christian to criticize the marriage of Aisha when Mary, who according to Catholic Encyclopaedia was between 12 and 14, and yet married Joseph who was 90 years old. Let us also not forget that consent of marriage was given by Aisha’s father, who had the best interest in his heart for her.

By invitation2learn

Bibliography and further reading:

http://www.islamic-awareness.org/Polemics/aishah.html

http://whyislam.org/forum/forum_posts.asp?TID=1525&PN=1

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Does Surah Nisa 4:34 Degrades Women? Is It True 4:34 Encourages “Beating”?

December 17, 2007

Surah Nisa verse 34 (4:34) is a very common verse brought up when discussion of Women in Islam takes place. Yusuf Ali’s translation of the verse reads:

“Men are the protectors and maintainers of women, because Allah has given the one more (strength) than the other, and because they support them from their means. Therefore the righteous women are devoutly obedient, and guard in (the husband’s) absence what Allah would have them guard. As to those women on whose part ye fear disloyalty and ill-conduct, admonish them (first), (Next), refuse to share their beds, (And last) beat them (lightly); but if they return to obedience, seek not against them Means (of annoyance): For Allah is Most High, great (above you all). ” (Quran 4:34, Yusuf Ali’s translation)

It must be pointed out that the overall image this verse portrays is quite incorrect. However, when one examines it in the light of Arabic, the verse becomes rational.

Verse begins with “men are qawwamun over women”; Arabic word qawwamun is mentioned here. The root of the word qawwamun (plural of qawwam), is qama which means “to stand or to make something stand or to establish something”. The characteristic of qawaamun in Quran is characterized by fairness. Thus in 4:134 and 5:8 Quran states:
“O you who believe! Be qawwamin with fairness…”
“O you who believe! Be qawwamin for God as witnesses to fairness…”

Therefore to qawwam over something or someone is to guard, maintain or take care of that something or someone in a proper and fair manner. In this passage Quran glorifies women and tells men to look after them in fair manner.

After mentioning that men are qawwamun over women, the verse goes on to provide the reasons:
1)”Because God has favored some of them more than others”. Although it is not explicitly mentioned whether man or woman are superior, in the context it is probable that men are understood in some way to be favored more than women. But in what ways? The verse does not give any answer. But we can justifiably take the reference to physical strength and energy in which men generally excel women and which enables men to guard women against some of the dangers to which they may be exposed in society and to take care of some of their needs.

2) Second reason for men being qawwamun over women is: “they (i.e. men) spend out of their wealth”. Although Islam permits women to earn money, however duty of ‘breadwinning’ is on man. This means that they will generally be responsible for the economic needs of women and this responsibility also makes them qawwamun.

However, we must NOT conclude that Islam views men superior to female. For this statement does not exclude the possibility that in some other ways women may be favored more than men. Indeed observation shows that women are in general more patient, caring and have a more developed intuition than men. The reference of favour is in reference to Qawwamun.

There is only one criterion, which makes a person more superior in Islam and that is Taqwa (righteousness, those stay away from sins and fear Allah and have piety). Quran says:

“…Verily the most honoured of you in the sight of Allah is (he who is) the most righteous of you. And Allah has full knowledge and is well acquainted (with all things). ” (49:13)

The fact that man has been favored in some ways more than woman does not automatically make him superior to her. It is only when his taqwa is more than hers that he can from the Qur’anic point of view be considered superior to her. And when a person’s taqwa increases to a worthwhile level the question of his superiority does not interest him, for he or she realizes that all praises are due to God.

Verse continues on to say “As for those women on whose part you fear nushuz…”, the word nushuz literally means “rebellion”. But rebellion against whom and in what sense? We should certainly not think of this in terms the rebellion of the ruled against a ruler in a sultanate or dictatorship and conclude that it consists of the wife disobeying some of the husband’s commands. This is because in verse 4:128 (same Surah), the word nushuz is used too: “If a woman fears nushuz on her husband’s part…” (Surah nisa 4:128). So a wife can fear nushuz on husband’s part also. It cannot therefore be understood in terms of the ruler-ruled relationship. To correctly understand the meaning of the word, it must be noted that both in the verse under consideration and in verse 128 the reference to nushuz is followed by a reference to the break-up of the marriage (as seen in verse 4:35, 4:130). If this context is kept in mind, then it becomes evident that nushuz means the type of behavior on the part of the husband or the wife, which is so disturbing for the other that their living together becomes difficult.

Thus the verse refers to one partner who knowingly behaves or continues to behave in a way, which seriously disturbs the other partner. In this case there is obviously an ill-will on the part of the first partner towards the second, which would result in break-up of marriage.

Now what does the Quran says about the partner in whom you fear nushuz (a behavior on the part of one marriage partner which comes out of ill-will and seriously disturbs the other partner)? Quran recommends three steps: 1) “Admonish them (first), 2) (next) leave them alone in beds 3) (and last) beat them or separate them (from you).”

1) “Admonish them“, husband can try to resolve the problems by discussion in a peaceful manner. Husband can try to point out teachings from the Quran on the topic. He can, for instance, point out the consequences of such a break-up.

2) “Leave them alone in beds“, if discussion comes to no avail then Quran prescribes, “Leave them alone in beds”. This may make them appreciate the seriousness of such a problem and see things in a different light. The separation may also ignite the love between the two.

3) “Beat them or separate them (from you)“, in most of the cases above two steps should be sufficient enough to resolve the problem, however if it still does not then Quran goes unto mention that men are allowed to use “dharb“. This word has been translated, as beating as there are verses in Quran such as 2:60, 61, 73, 8:12, 50, 7:160 etc, where the word does mean smite or strike. However in many other Quranic passage the word dharb DOES have other meanings. The word can mean constructing or coining something such as coining mathal or similitude as demonstrated in 14:24, 16:75-76, 30:28, 36:27 etc. In 2:60 the word is also used to separate two things. In 20:77 it is used of the splitting of the sea to make a way for the children of Israel to escape and in 57:13 it is used of making a wall to separate the two groups of people in the hereafter. Leaving, withdrawing or taking away is the meaning in 43:5. In 13:17 the word is used for separating truth and falsehood. The word can also mean campaigning or travelling in the land, e.g., for the purpose of trade (2:273, 73:20).

In the present context, the Qur’anic usage allows two meanings: 1) separating from the wives in the sense of living apart from them, 2) beating them. The first meaning fits the context well for some kind of physical separation is a very understandable step after suspension of sexual relations does not work. The second meaning is more natural from a linguistic point of view and has the support of a strong consensus among the commentators. In the rest of this commentary, we consider the question: how is “beating”, if that is what is intended in the verse, is to be interpreted in the light of the passage as a whole and the general teaching of the Qur’an.

The verse (if we interpret the meaning here is beating) deals with nushuz (behavior on the part of the wife which is so disturbing for the other that their living together becomes difficult). Beating is to be done after admonishing them and then leaving them alone in beds. Beating is not to go on and on but is to be tried as a last step to save the marriage. Once it is clear that it is not working it is to be abandoned in favor of some other steps involving relatives of the husband and the wife mentioned in the next verse (4:35). There is therefore, absolutely no license here for the type of regular and continual wife beating that goes on in some homes, where each time the husband is angry with his wife or with someone else he turns against her and beats her up. Domestic violence we see in the world (including west) is not at all preached by this verse.

Even so, with regards to wife beating in Nushuz (behavior on the part of the wife which is so disturbing for the other that their living together becomes difficult) following points must be noted:

a) According to some traditions, the Prophet said in his famous and well-attended speech on the occasion of his farewell pilgrimage that the beating done according to the present verse should be ghayr mubarrih, i.e. in such a way that it should not cause injury, bruise or serious hurt. Therefore some scholars like Razi and Tabari have concluded that beating should be done with a miswak or folded scarf.

b) If the husband beats a wife without respecting the limits set down by the Qur’an and Hadith, then she can take him to court and if ruled in favor has the right to apply the law of retaliation and beat the husband as he beat her.

The emotion involved may bring husband and wife closer, whilst remembering in mind that beating ought to be ghayr mubarrih (in such a way that it does not causes serious hurt, bruise or injury). Indeed, some scholars suggest the beating should symbolic (such as with miswak). Ironically, this may even protect women. This prevents, restricts as well as condemns abusive actions of husband. This prevents wife battering as is observed in some societies.

Quran further goes on to say “But if they obey you, then seek nothing against them“. Here obey means that the wife accepts the husband’s fair and justified demands or expectations. “Seek nothing against them” means that after the wife has abandoned nushuz and returned to the decent way one partner in marriage should behave towards the other, the husband should forgive and forget the past and start a new page.

Behold, God is most high and great“, the husband should remember that God is most high; he will have to give reckoning to God.

Finally, one should also remember rest of the teachings of Prophet Muhammed (PBUH) and the Quran:
O ye who believe! Ye are forbidden to inherit women against their will. Nor should ye treat them with harshness, that ye may take away part of the dower [money given by the husband to the wife for the marriage contract] ye have given them, except where they have been guilty of open lewdness; on the contrary live with them on a footing of kindness and equity. If ye take a dislike to them it may be that ye dislike a thing, and God brings about through it a great deal of good. (The Noble Quran, 4:19)

And among God’s signs is this: He created for you mates from amongst yourselves (males as mates for females and vice versa) that you might find tranquillity and peace in them. And he has put love and kindness among you. Herein surely are signs for those who reflect. (The Noble Quran 30:21)”

And the believers men and women are friends one of the other, they enjoin what is right and forbid what is wrong, and they establish worship and pay the poor due, and they obey God and his messenger. As for these, God will have mercy on them…(The Noble Quran 9:71)”

Narrated Mu’awiyah al-Qushayri: “I went to the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) and asked him: What do you say (command) about our wives? He replied: Give them food what you have for yourself, and clothe them by which you clothe yourself, and do not beat them, and do not revile them. (Sunan Abu-Dawud, Book 11, Marriage (Kitab Al-Nikah), Number 2139)”

Narrated Mu’awiyah ibn Haydah: “I said: Apostle of Allah, how should we approach our wives and how should we leave them? He replied: Approach your tilth when or how you will, give her (your wife) food when you take food, clothe when you clothe yourself, do not revile her face, and do not beat her. (Sunan Abu-Dawud, Book 11, Marriage (Kitab Al-Nikah), Number 2138)”

Abu Huraira (Allah be pleased with him) reported Allah’s Apostle (may peace be upon him) as saying: “He who believes in Allah and the Hereafter, if he witnesses any matter he should talk in good terms about it or keep quiet. Act kindly towards woman, for woman is created from a rib, and the most crooked part of the rib is its top. If you attempt to straighten it, you will break it, and if you leave it, its crookedness will remain there. So act kindly towards women. (Translation of Sahih Muslim, The Book of Marriage (Kitab Al-Nikah), Book 008, Number 3468)

Narrated Salim: “….Umar said: ‘The Prophet forbade beating on the face.(Translation of Sahih Bukhari, Hunting, Slaughtering, Volume 7, Book 67, Number 449)

“How does anyone of you beat his wife as he beats the stallion camel and then embrace (sleep with) her?” (Al-Bukhari, English Translation, vol. 8, Hadith 68, pp. 42-43)

Bibliography & Further Reading:
http://www.answering-christianity.com/beating_yes.htm
http://www.load-islam.com/C/Women/TafsirAyah34

By invitation2learn,

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