The knowledge of God is eternal. He sees the future just as He does the past.
By: Wahiduddin Khan
All of the prophets who came into this world had an identical mission. They taught that man’s life on earth was but an infinitesimal part of his eternal life. In this world he was put to the test. Reward or punishment would come in the next. After death, if he had followed the Lord’s path, he would find his eternal abode in heaven. But, if he had strayed from it, he would be plunged straight into hell. His damnation would be everlasting. This was the reality of life taught by each and every one of the Prophets.
Adam was the first man on earth and also the first Prophet. He was succeeded by a long line of prophets right up to the time of the Muhammad. Altogether there have been some 124,000 messengers of God. They appeared in different lands and among different peoples, preaching the word of God and exhorting people to live in fear of Him. But very few of those they addressed have ever proved willing to give up their freedom for the sake of God.
Few people, for instance, followed the Prophet Yahya (John the Baptist) and he died a martyr’s death. When Lot left his people, only two of his daughters accompanied him. According to the Old Testament, only eight people entered the ark along with Noah. When Abraham left his native country, Iraq, the only people to accompany him were his wife Sarah and his nephew Lot, although they were later joined by his two sons, Ishmael and Isaac. Even after great missionary effort on the part of Jesus, the priests and religious authorities who heard his teachings did not follow him, and even his twelve friends temporarily forsook him at the moment of truth.
This was the unhappy lot of most of the prophets. The ties of kith and kin sometimes brought a handful of followers to the more fortunate, but as often as not, would-be prophets were forced by the inattention and insensitivity of those around them to live out their lives in solitude and persecution. This verse of the Qur’an very aptly sums up common attitudes to Prophethood throughout the history of mankind:
How regretful for the servants. There did not come to them any messenger except that they used to ridicule him. (Yasin 36:30)
How extraordinary it is, then, that prophets are the very ones to whom the least historical importance has been attached. History has fully chronicled the lives of kings and soldiers, but not one single prophet’s life has been given its due place in the annals of history. Aristotle (384-322 B.C.), who was born one thousand years after the Prophet Moses, was not even acquainted with Moses’ name. The reason is not far to seek: most of the prophets were rejected by their peoples; their homes were demolished; they were treated as outcasts from society; they appeared so unimportant that no one deemed it necessary even to make any mention of them.
Why were the prophets treated in this manner?
There was just one reason for this, and that was their criticism of current practices, especially of the established religious authorities, the priesthood. People love nothing more than being praised; and they loathe nothing more than being criticized. The prophets exposed the difference between right and wrong, making no compromise with their peoples.
They were persistently pointing out the faults in people’s beliefs and actions. Consequently, people turned against them. If the prophets had taught what everyone wanted to hear, they would never have been treated in this manner.
Although this was the fate of most of the prophets, a few of them were spared, Joseph, Solomon and David being names that immediately spring to mind. But the power and prestige that these prophets acquired was not due to the popularity of their teachings; they had an entirely separate origin.
David was a young soldier in the army of the Israelites under King Saul, during the time that the Israelites and Philistines went to war with each other. Among the army of Philistines was the giant Goliath. So, powerful a fighter was he that no one was prepared to do battle with him. King Saul then announced that he would give his daughter in marriage to anyone who slew Goliath. David came forward, challenged the giant, and killed him. In this way he became the son-in-law of the King of Israel. In a subsequent war, both King Saul and his heir apparent were killed in battle. David was thereupon crowned King of Israel. Solomon was David’s son, and succeeded to his father’s throne. As for Joseph, he was endowed by God with the ability to interpret dreams and the King of Egypt, impressed by his ability, went so far as to entrust the affairs of state to him. But the King still remained head of state and he and his subjects continued to adhere to their pagan religion.
This hostile treatment meted out to the prophets throughout the ages, deprived people of true guidance and, what was even more serious, made the preservation of the scriptures and teachings of the prophets impossible. Only a prophet’s followers can preserve his teachings after him; but the prophets either had no followers, or so few as to be unable to counter the challenges of their society to the preservation of the Holy Scriptures.
The knowledge of God is eternal. He sees the future just as He does the past. He was aware, before the sending of the prophets, that this would be the fate of the human race. So He had decreed that He would remedy this situation at the end of the prophetic era by sending His own special envoy to the world: a prophet whose task would be not only to preach religion, but also to exalt it above all others on earth. He would be granted special succor from God, enabling him to compel his people to bow to the truth. God would keep him on earth until he had rectified the perversions of the society around him. God’s own Might would assist the Prophet to vanquish his enemies. In this way the true religion would be established on solid foundations and God’s Word would be perpetuated, as it says in the Bible, “for the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of God, as the waters cover the sea.”
Translations and additions have taken the present day Bible very far from the original. But it still contains multiple references to the coming of the Prophet Muhammad. If one studies the Bible objectively, one will find certain references that cannot be applied to anyone else. The very purpose of the mission of the Prophet Jesus was to announce to the world, and to the Jewish nation in particular, the coming of the final prophet. The “New Testament” to which he referred was, in truth, Islam, for it marked the end of Jewish religious hegemony and projected the Children of Ishmael as the true recipients of the word of God. Hence, the rise of the Prophet Muhammad.
The Prophet Jesus came to the world six hundred years before the last of the Prophets. In one reference to Jesus, the Qur’an has this to say:
And [mention] when Jesus, the son of Mary, said, “O children of Israel, indeed I am the messenger of Allah to you confirming what came before me of the Torah and bringing good tidings of a messenger to come after me, whose name is Ahmad.” (As-Saff 61:6)
The words “Ahmad” and “Muhammad” have the same meaning: the praised one. In the Gospel of Barnabas the name of the coming prophet is given quite clearly as Muhammad. But since Christians consider the Gospel of Barnabas to be apocryphal, we do not consider it proper to quote from that source. We cannot even be sure whether Jesus, in his prophecy, referred to Ahmad or Muhammad. Most probably he used a word with the same meaning as these names.
In his biography of the Prophet, Ibn Hisham quotes the historian, Muhammad ibn Ishaq, the most authentic source on the Prophet’s life, as saying that when Jesus spoke in his mother tongue the word that he used of the coming prophet was “Munhamann” meaning “the praised one.” This traditionally accepted appellation was probably passed on to him by Palestinian Christians who had come under Islamic rule. When the Bible was translated into Greek, the word became “Paraclete”.
Source: Taken from the author’s Muhammad, a Prophet for All Humanity.
It is widely circulated that Jews and Judaism do not recognize Islam or Muslims. Jewish rabbis usually confirm that Islam is not a religion of God and Muslims are not believers in God.
This time, we have a Jewish rabbi who affirms that there is a common faith or a fundamental religion into which all people are born. This is the basic faith which is enjoined on all mankind, though it is given different names. According to the Jewish rabbi, this is Islam which was the religion of Adam and Noah.
It is worth noting that Muslims believe that Islam is the religion of all prophets and Messengers of God from Adam to Muhammad, including Noah, Abraham, Moses and even Jesus. In the Qur’an, we read:
Indeed, the religion in the sight of God is Islam. (Aal `Imran 3:19)
We also read:
Abraham was neither a Jew nor a Christian but he was (an) upright (man), a Muslim, and he was not one of the polytheists. (Aal `Imran 3:67)
Watch this video to know how Islam was the fundamental religion and how it was the religion of Adam and Noah and how Jews recognized Muslims!
Female Priest Embraced Islam after Jesus Came to her, Says ABC News
In Islam, all prophets, including Jesus and Muhammad, could not commit major sins
The infallibility of prophets is often a subject of considerable debate between Christians and Muslims. On the one hand, Christians do not believe in the infallibility of prophets to the exclusion of Jesus. On the other hand, Muslims believe in the infallibility of prophets but they disagree over whether or not such infallibility is absolute.
So, are prophets as infallible as angels, or are they ordinary people like us? What do Islam and Christianity exactly say about the infallibility of prophets?
The Infallibility of Prophets in Islam
In Islam, though prophets were still human beings, they attained the highest levels of human integrity and perfection. Though their nature was still such an earthly, terrestrial one which is liable to error and sin, it attained the highest degrees of spiritual loftiness and moral purity.
That is why prophets were more attached to Heaven and consequently less apt to commit the error and sin to which ordinary people are prone.
In the Qur’an, we read:
Mankind was [of] one religion [before their deviation]; then Allah sent the prophets as bringers of good tidings and warners and sent down with them the Scripture in truth to judge between the people concerning that in which they differed. (Al-Baqarah 2:213)
We also read:
Certainly did Allah confer [great] favor upon the believers when He sent among them a Messenger from themselves, reciting to them His verses and purifying them and teaching them the Book and wisdom, although they had been before in manifest error. (Aal `Imran 3:164)
However, prophets might have erred by doing what is less preponderant, getting confused or oblivious or even slightly sinning without significant impact on their divine messages or prophetic standing. All of that are such human attitudes to which even prophets were vulnerable since they were still human beings created from clay.
Nevertheless, prophets were not exposed to all sins for there are major sins which interfere with the divine companionship. Prophets were in permanent company with the divine presence. That is why it did not beseem them to commit major sins simply because God would not let them initiate them at the very beginning or finalize them at the end.
For example, the Qur’an quotes Prophet Joseph as saying:
And I do not acquit myself. Indeed, the soul is a persistent enjoiner of evil, except those upon which my Lord has mercy. Indeed, my Lord is Forgiving and Merciful.” (Yusuf 12:53)
About Prophet Joseph, the Qur’an also says:
And she certainly determined [to seduce] him, and he would have inclined to her had he not seen the proof of his Lord. And thus [it was] that We should avert from him evil and immorality. Indeed, he was of Our chosen servants. (Yusuf 12:24)
If one really feels that God is actually with one all the time, this one is unlikely to commit a major sin especially if this one is godly enough simply because the causes of a major sin for godly people, especially prophets, are almost absent. Satan has no authority over them. That is why there is no much room for temptation so that a prophet would commit a major sin.
It must be borne in mind that God essentially chose, reformed and guided prophets in order that they would guide humanity to His way. How come a misguided deviant can guide others? A blind man cannot judge colors!
However, minor sins could be still committed by prophets but in such a way which did not seriously affect their heavenly messages or personal integrity. They were still human beings. To err is human. Prophets were not such angels who could not disobey God for the latter are disposed only to obey God.
Though sin is disliked at the sight of God, repentance and comeback to God for pardon are much liked by God. Were it not for such forgiveness, God would not have created mankind.
God wants such a being that is obedient by choice rather than under compulsion. Sin is a side effect of man’s free will which is overlooked whenever sincere repentance takes place even if sin is repeated.
God gives a servant chance after chance to turn to Him in repentance for obedience coupled with the ability to sin is more endeared to God than obedience coupled with the inability to sin.
Abu Hurairah reported that the Messenger of God said, “By the One in Whose Hand my soul is! If you did not commit sins, God would replace you with a people who would commit sins and seek forgiveness from God; and God will certainly forgive them.” (Muslim)
Though sin is evil, it sometimes leads to good. It sometimes causes a self to feel humble, abject and lowly as a result of admission of sin, acknowledgement of shortcoming and recognition of forgiveness. This feeling would not have been got by such an infallible, sinless self.
Consequently, God wants repentance from all of His creatures without discrimination. In this regard, there is no difference between prophets and other people. All are the same in this respect. Thus, repentance by prophets is still equally desirable. About that, we read in the Qur’an:
And [he was told], “Throw down your staff.” But when he saw it writhing as if it were a snake, he turned in flight and did not return. [Allah said], “O Moses, fear not. Indeed, in My presence the messengers do not fear. Otherwise, he who wrongs, then substitutes good after evil – indeed, I am Forgiving and Merciful. (An-Naml 27:10-11)
In this sense, the slight flaws of some prophets which are reported in the Qur’an or the Sunnah (prophet tradition) can be understood.
Accordingly, under Islam, there is a palatable belief in logical infallibility of the prophets. Prophets are neither as absolutely infallible as angels nor are they portrayed as adulterers and drunkards.
The Infallibility of Prophets in Christianity
Though Christianity recognizes the high standing of prophethood and the merits of prophets in the Bible, it still abounds in serious misdeeds and major sins which do not beseem not only prophets but also any decent person.
For example, the Bible portrays Prophet Noah as such a drunkard who drinks and gets uncovered. We read: “And Noah began to be a husbandman, and he planted a vineyard: And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.” (Genesis 9:20-21)
Similarly, the Bible portrays Prophet Lot as such an immoral old man who drinks, sleeps with his own daughters and then begets illegitimate children. We read: “And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain, and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters. And the firstborn said unto the younger, Our father is old, and there is not a man in the earth to come in unto us after the manner of all the earth: Come, let us make our father drink wine, and we will lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night: and the firstborn went in, and lay with her father; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. And it came to pass on the morrow, that the firstborn said unto the younger, Behold, I lay yesternight with my father: let us make him drink wine this night also; and go thou in, and lie with him, that we may preserve seed of our father. And they made their father drink wine that night also: and the younger arose, and lay with him; and he perceived not when she lay down, nor when she arose. Thus were both the daughters of Lot with child by their father.” (Genesis 19:30-36)
Likewise, the Bible portrays Prophet David as a lecher. We read: “And David sent and enquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bath-sheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite? And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned unto her house. And the woman conceived, and sent and told David, and said, I am with child.” (2 Samuel 11:3-5)
Biblical instances of commission of major sins by prophets are numerous. So, we should find out the secret behind drawing prophets in such disgraceful portraits in the Bible. We may ask: if prophets were really indecent like that, how could they guide people to the way of God? It is quite apparent that those prophets stood in need of guidance according to the Bible.
It is safe to say that the absence of the concept of prophets’ infallibility in Christianity is attributable to a more corrupt and disappointing concept which is the belief in mankind’s contamination with an unforgivable sin.
According to this modern Christian belief, nobody is free from this sin except Jesus not for he is, for example, an infallible human being, but for he is a demigod (half-God) or specifically one-third of God.
Since mankind is contaminated and uncleanable, the only solution in the contemporary Christianity was having Jesus (the demigod) killed by mankind so that humanity can be decontaminated and cleansed of sin.
But, how can the sin of murder lead to the forgiveness of any other sin? Does the utmost sin, that is homicide, lead to punishment or forgiveness?
With the above conclusions in mind, we do not find it strange to have the Bible attributing immoralities to the prophets of God. Undoubtedly, the above belief is apparently corrupt given the perversion of the concept of prophethood itself in the present-day Christianity.
Prophets are people whom God guided and selected to guide people through them. Were it not for the dispatch of prophets to people and the response of some people to God through them, humanity would have been doomed and the world would have come to an end.
It is intuitive that the world’s survival is pending the worship of God therein. If such worship ceases to exist, punishment will be surely administered. In the Qur’an, we read:
And indeed, they were about to drive you from the land to evict you therefrom. And then [when they do], they will not remain [there] after you, except for a little. (Al-Israa’ 17:76)
The above verse signifies that people’s disbelief in Prophet Muhammad and the heavenly message he carried to them would have certainly led to their destruction and ruin. This was the divine norm which was applicable to all past nations. God used to destroy the nations which disbelieved in their prophets.
If prophets were really as portrayed by the Bible, they themselves would not have been deemed to be rightly guided and so people could not have been guided through them. Consequently, punishment would have taken place and the world would have ceased to exist.
Since the world continues to exist, this itself is sufficient evidence for continued faith and goodness and, consequently, prophets’ integrity and the guidance of people through them.
Belief in redemption through Jesus’ blood is an apparently false belief. If the population of the earth are really contaminated by sin and could not be cleansed thereof, they are not good and it is useless to redeem them either through Jesus’s blood or otherwise. Any such redemption would not have changed or cleansed their contaminated nature.
How would redemption have helped if people had insisted on evil and sin? The murder of Jesus would not have made nothing new but the wrongful bloodshed of an innocent person, that is to say the addition of a hideous crime to the criminal record of humankind.
- The Glorious Qur’an
- Sahih Muslim
- The Holy Bible
By Editorial Staff
Jesus Christ and Prophet Muhammad could not commit major sins.
Most Christians claim that Jesus was the only sinless human being, unlike all other prophets. They offer as evidence Qur’anic verses and prophetic hadiths (statements) as well as biblical verses in support of their belief in Jesus’ infallibility to the exclusion of all other prophets.
As for Jesus’ infallibility, they cite the following Qur’anic verse which reports how Mary’s mother supplicated to God before Mary’s birth and how God responded to her. We read:
And I have named her Mary, and I seek refuge for her in You and [for] her descendants from Satan, the expelled [from the mercy of God]. (Aal `Imran 3:36-37)
They also cite the following hadith: Abu Hurairah reported, “I heard the Messenger of God saying, ‘There is none born among the offspring of Adam, but Satan touches it. A child, therefore, cries loudly at the time of birth because of the touch of Satan, except Mary and her child.” Then Abu Huraira recited: “And I seek refuge for her in You and [for] her descendants from Satan” (Aal `Imran 3:36) (Al-Bukhari)
In the long hadith of intercession, Jesus’ response to people when they asked him for intercession with God on the Day of Judgment is also cited.
Jesus is quoted as saying: “Today my Lord has become angry as He has never become before.” He will not mention a sin, but will say: “Myself! Myself! Myself!” (Al-Bukhari)
Christians argue that prophets asked for intercession, like Adam, Abraham, and Moses, will apologize for some sins they committed. But, Jesus will not apologize for any sin.
They also cite biblical verses indicating that Jesus is sinless. For example, we read: “For we have not a high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.” (Hebrews 4:15)
As evidence for the claim that Prophet Muhammad was not sinless, the following Qur’anic verse is cited for instance:
And if there comes to you from Satan an evil suggestion, then seek refuge in God. Indeed, He is the Hearing, the Knowing. (Fussilat 36:41)
They argue that the above verse indicates that evil suggestions from Satan came to Prophet Muhammad like ordinary people.
There are also other Qur’anic verses attributing sins to Prophet Muhammad like other people. For example, we read:
So be patient, [O Muhammad]. Indeed, the promise of God is truth. And ask forgiveness for your sin and exalt [God] with praise of your Lord in the evening and the morning. (Ghafir 40:55)
We may ask: is Jesus the only sinless man? Is Prophet Muhammad really not sinless?
As a matter of fact, all children of Adam, including prophets, are sinful. Neither Moses nor Jesus nor Muhammad was without sin. However, they could not commit major sins. There are uncountable pieces of evidence for that from the Qur’an and the Bible.
As far as Jesus is concerned, he could not commit major sins, but, as a human being, could commit minor sins. There is evidence for that from the Qur’an like the following verse:
And We did not send before you any messenger or prophet except that when he spoke [or recited], Satan threw into it [some misunderstanding]. But God abolishes that which Satan throws in; then God makes precise His verses. And God is Knowing and Wise. (Al-Hajj 22:52)
In the above verse, there is evidence that all prophets of God, including Jesus, were subject to Satan’s temptation.
Anas ibn Malik reported that Prophet Muhammad said, “All of the children of Adam are sinners, and the best of sinners are those who repent.” (At-Tirmidhi & Ibn Majah)
Accordingly, as a child of Adam, Jesus was liable to sin.
The claim that only Jesus was sinless whereas all other prophets including Prophet Muhammad were sinful is false. The above quotation (Aal `Imran 3:36-37) referring to the prayer of Mary’s mother and God’s answer to the same does not necessarily mean that Mary and her son were totally immune to Satan’s temptation. It rather signifies their immunity to the total following of Satan, despite their liability to casual sinning like all other human beings.
The so-called “three temptations by Satan” cited in the Bible (Matthew 4:1-11) constitute sufficient evidence for Jesus’ vulnerability to Satan’s temptation like all other human beings.
Another piece of evidence is the following verse:
And if there comes to you from Satan an evil suggestion, then seek refuge in God. Indeed, He is the Hearing, the Knowing. (Fussilat 36:41)
In the above, God ordered Prophet Muhammad to seek refuge in God wherever an evil suggestion came to him from Satan. This means that the act of seeking refuge in God as done by Mary’s mother does not render man immune to Satan’s temptation. It just immunizes one against the total following of Satan.
The evidence that Mary was not sinless is that she said words which can be deemed sins. She despaired of the mercy of God. About Mary, the Qur’an says:
And the pains of childbirth drove her to the trunk of a palm tree. She said, “Oh, I wish I had died before this and was in oblivion, forgotten.” (Maryam 19:23)
The hadith indicating that Satan did not touch Mary or her son Jesus is restricted to the time they were born. As for the other times in the lives of Mary and Jesus, they were exposed to Satan’s temptation like all other human beings.
As for the long hadith of intercession where Jesus did not mention a sin he had committed, it means that Jesus will not apologize for intercession due to a sin he had committed like most prophets. Rather, he will just apologize without giving reasons.
This does not mean that Jesus had never committed a sin in his lifetime. Prophet Noah also will not mention a sin as a reason why he will not intercede. Does that mean that Noah also is sinless?
In Hebrews, the verse indicating that Jesus is sinless and similar verses are refuted by Jesus himself. Jesus confirmed that there is none who is good except God. In the New Testament, we read: Now behold, one came and said to Him, “Good Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may have eternal life?” So He said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. But if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.” (Matthew 19:16-17)
We may ask here: if Jesus had been really sinless and if there had been a sinless human being, why did Jesus confirm that neither he nor others are good except for God?
The above verses from the New Testament can bear only one meaning, that is, there is no human being who can be described as absolutely good, because each of the children of Adam, including Jesus, is sinful.
The Bible itself cites words and actions of Jesus which are seen as sins. For example, we notice that Jesus’ treatment of his mother as portrayed by the Bible is devoid of the dutifulness towards parents required from average people, not to mention prophets.
For example, we read: While Jesus was speaking to the crowds, his mother and brothers stood outside trying to speak with him. Someone said to him, “Look, your mother and brothers are outside wanting to speak with you.” Jesus replied, “Who is my mother? Who are my brothers?” He stretched out his hand toward his disciples and said, “Look, here are my mother and my brothers. Whoever does the will of my Father who is in heaven is my brother, sister, and mother.” (Matthew 12:46-50)
In addition to Jesus’ maltreatment of his mother, the Bible tells us that wine was drunk by Jesus’ followers even in his presence. We read: When the wine ran out, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They don’t have any wine.” Jesus replied, “Woman, what does that have to do with me? My time hasn’t come yet.” (John 2:3-4)
As far as Muhammad is concerned, like Jesus and all other prophets, Prophet Muhammad could commit minor sins only, other than major sins.
The verses making mention of sins by and evil suggestions to Prophet Muhammad just refer to minor sins and slight flaws of godly people. That is to say, the flaws of Prophet Muhammad, Jesus, and all other prophets are not like our sins. They are rather much slighter than our sins to the extent that if most of those sins had been committed by some of us, they would not have counted as sins but they still did not beseem the prophets and messengers of God and were less preponderant and weighty as individual choices.
Maybe, Prophet Muhammad was the least sinful human being as God helped him, unlike any other human being, against his jinni (evil spirit) to the extent that it reverted to Islam.
`Abdullah ibn Mas`ud reported that Prophet Muhammad said: “There is not a single one of you except that a companion (jinni) has been assigned to him. They (the Companions) said, ‘What about you, O Messenger of God!’ He replied, ‘Yes. However, God has helped me against him and he has accepted Islam. Thus, he only commands me to do good.’” (Muslim)
To conclude, both Jesus and Prophet Muhammad are two of the best and greatest prophets and messengers of God. According to Islam, like all other prophets, they could not commit major sins. Perhaps, they committed minor sins only. Maybe, Prophet Muhammad was the least sinful human being for the last piece of evidence offered above.
- The Glorious Qur’an
- Sahih Al-Bukhari
- Sahih Muslim
- Tafsir Al-Baghawi
- Tafsir Al-Sheikh Al-Sha`rawi
- The Holy Bible
By Editorial Staff
In Christianity, Adam is notorious for the original sin, but Islam is much fairer
The portraits of the prophets in the various heavenly messages, including Judaism, Christianity and Islam, are often closely comparable.
No wonder, they are messages, albeit several, of only one faith. It is the true religion of God every time and everywhere.
However, the images of some prophets differ from one message to another owing to, sometimes the availability of more or less details which is something acceptable, and sometimes the distortion of the previous messages where some prophets are painted illogical pictures which cannot be ascribed to ordinary people rather than prophets, not to mention their inconsistence with the scriptural texts in the other messages.
That is why we deemed it necessary to spotlight the lives and messages of the prophets of God to paint the true portraits of those prophets and acquit them of the fabrications, falsehoods and lies attributed to them.
Prophet Adam’s life can be divided into three phases: first, creation and honoring; second, disobedience and sin; and third, post-sin phase.
As for the first phase – creation and honoring, it does not differ widely in the various Holy Scriptures. As for the second phase – disobedience and sin, here are some differences over it in the Holy Scriptures. As for the third phase – post-sin phase, there are fundamental differences among the various Holy Scriptures over this phase.
Prophet Adam in Christianity
Christianity does not consider Adam a prophet but just the forefather of the prophets.
In the Bible, especially the Old Testament, Christianity confirms the honor given to Adam after his creation at the first phase. About that, we read: “And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. And the Lord God planted a garden eastward in Eden, and there He put the man whom He had formed.” (Genesis 2:7-8)
As for the second phase – disobedience and sin, we notice that the tree Adam was forbidden to eat from is called “the tree of the knowledge of good and evil”. In the Old Testament, we read: “But you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for on the day you eat from it, you will certainly die.” (Genesis 2:17)
We also observe that the reason for the prohibition of eating was the fear that man could know good and evil and the ensuing eating from “the tree of life” and living forever. In the Old Testament, we read: The Lord God said, “Since the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil, he must not reach out, take from the tree of life, eat, and live forever.” So the Lord God sent him away from the garden of Eden to work the ground from which he was taken. (Genesis 3:22-23)
It is worth noting that Eve is blamed much more than Adam for disobedience and sin in the Old Testament. For example, we read: Then he asked, “Who told you that you were naked? Did you eat from the tree that I commanded you not to eat from?” The man replied, “The woman you gave to be with me—she gave me some fruit from the tree, and I ate.” So the Lord God asked the woman, “What is this you have done?” And the woman said, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” (Genesis 3:11-13)
In the New Testament, we read: “For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman was deceived and transgressed.” (1 Timothy 2:13-14)
As for the third phase – post-sin phase, we perceive that it is full of repercussions of Adam’s sin as it is considered a stage of fall and expulsion. In the Old Testament, we, for example, read:
I will put hostility between you and the woman, and between your offspring and her offspring. He will strike your head, and you will strike his heel. He said to the woman: I will intensify your labor pains; you will bear children with painful effort. Your desire will be for your husband, yet he will rule over you. And he said to the man, “Because you listened to your wife and ate from the tree about which I commanded you, ‘Do not eat from it’: The ground is cursed because of you. You will eat from it by means of painful labor all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. You will eat bread by the sweat of your brow until you return to the ground, since you were taken from it. For you are dust, and you will return to dust.” (Genesis 3:15-19)
The stated repercussions are much more serious in the New Testament than in the Old Testament. Adam is considered the cause of death as a result of the so-called “Original Sin”, of which there is no way out, except for belief in Jesus in whom life exists, being a demigod and a demi-man.
In the New Testament, we, for example, read: For just as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive. (1 Corinthians 15:22)
We also read: “So it is written, the first man Adam became a living being; the last Adam became a life-giving spirit.” (1 Corinthians 15:45)
Prophet Adam in Islam
Adam, the father of mankind, is considered the first of the prophets of God in Islam. Abu Omamah reported that a man wondered: “O Messenger of God, was Adam a prophet?” He replied: “Yes, he was a well-informed, well-addressed one…” (Ibn Hibban, At-Tabarani and Al-Hakim)
Islam confirms the reported honor given to Adam at the first phase. Moreover, the Qur’an relates that God commanded the angels to prostrate themselves before Adam. In the Qur’an, we read:
And [mention] when We said to the angels, “Prostrate before Adam”; so they prostrated, except for Satan. He refused and was arrogant and became of the disbelievers. (Al-Baqarah 2:34)
As for the second phase, that is the sin phase, the Qur’an tells us that Adam had been already forbidden to follow Satan even before sinning, but Adam, unfortunately, did. That is why he was expelled.
The Qur’an does not make any mention of the alleged “tree of the knowledge of good and evil”. As for “the tree of life”, the Qur’an indicates that it was just something whispered by Satan, unlike the Bible which alleges that there was actually something called “tree of life”. In the Qur’an, we read:
So We said, “O Adam, indeed this is an enemy to you and to your wife. Then let him not remove you from Paradise so you would suffer. Indeed, it is [promised] for you not to be hungry therein or be unclothed. And indeed, you will not be thirsty therein or be hot from the sun.” Then Satan whispered to him; he said, “O Adam, shall I direct you to the tree of eternity and possession that will not deteriorate?” (Ta-ha 20:117-120)
Unlike the Bible, we notice that blame is apportioned in the Qur’an sometimes to Adam alone and sometimes to himself and his wife on an equal footing. So, in the Qur’an, no blame is attached to Eve alone for the sin.
Unlike the Bible as well, there is no incitation of enmity or grudge between Adam and Eve in the Qur’an. We read:
Then Satan whispered to him; he said, “O Adam, shall I direct you to the tree of eternity and possession that will not deteriorate?” And Adam and his wife ate of it, and their private parts became apparent to them, and they began to fasten over themselves from the leaves of Paradise. And Adam disobeyed his Lord and erred. (Ta-ha 20:120-121)
As for the third phase, namely the post-sin phase, it is very different in the Qur’an from the Bible. In Islam, it is a stage of repentance, guidance and selection. The Qur’an tells us that Adam accepted Adam’s repentance thanks to words He Himself inspired Adam. We read:
Then Adam received from his Lord [some] words, and He accepted his repentance. Indeed, it is He who is the Accepting of repentance, the Merciful. Then his Lord chose him and turned to him in forgiveness and guided [him]. (Al-Baqarah 2:37)
The Qur’an also informs us that God not only accepted Adam’s repentance but also guided and selected him. We read:
And Adam and his wife ate of it, and their private parts became apparent to them, and they began to fasten over themselves from the leaves of Paradise. And Adam disobeyed his Lord and erred. Then his Lord chose him and turned to him in forgiveness and guided [him]. (Ta-ha 20:120-122)
We also read:
Indeed, Allah chose Adam and Noah and the family of Abraham and the family of ‘Imran over the worlds (Aal `Imran 3:33)
According to Islam, the complications of Adam’s sin did not go farther except for a frequent warning in the Qur’an from God to Adam’s offspring against the repetition of the sin committed by the parents of mankind: Adam and Eve. For example, we read:
O children of Adam, let not Satan tempt you as he removed your parents from Paradise, stripping them of their clothing to show them their private parts. Indeed, he sees you, he and his tribe, from where you do not see them. Indeed, We have made the devils allies to those who do not believe. (Al-A`raf 7:27)
- The Glorious Qur’an
- Sahih Ibn Hibban
- The Holy Bible
Are Prophets Sinless?
Salvation in Judaism, Christianity and Islam
2-Prophet Idris (Enoch)
16-Prophet Elias (Elijah)
By Editorial Staff
Which to choose: the Muslim Idris or the Christian Enoch?
He is Idris as named by the Qur’an or Enoch as named by the Bible. He was one of the earliest prophets after Prophet Adam that both Islam and Christianity honor and praise despite the lack of details about his life either in the Bible or the Qur’an.
However, Islam’s honoring and praise of Prophet Idris is much more consistent, logical and reasonable than those of Christianity as will be discussed below.
Prophet Idris (Enoch) in Christianity
While Christianity praises Prophet Idris or Enoch in the Bible, including both the Old Testament and the New Testament, it, as usual, overpraises him and claims that he was raised to Heaven and he did not die.
In the New Testament, we, for example, read: By faith Enoch was translated, that he should not see death, “and was not found because God had translated him.” For before his translation he had this testimony: that he pleased God. (Hebrews 11:5)
In the Old Testament, we read: “And Enoch lived sixty and five years, and begot Methuselah. And Enoch walked with God after he begot Methuselah three hundred years, and begot sons and daughters. And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years. And Enoch walked with God; and he was not, for God took him.” (Genesis 5:21-24)
Prophet Idris in Islam
Islam reasonably praises and honors Prophet Idris among other prophets. In the Qur’an, we read:
And [mention] Ishmael and Idris and Dhul-Kifl; all were of the patient. And We admitted them into Our mercy. Indeed, they were of the righteous. (Al-Anbiya 21:85-86)
The Qur’an tells us that God raised him to a high station as he was a prophet and a man of truth. We read:
And mention in the Book, Idris. Indeed, he was a man of truth and a prophet. And We raised him to a high station. (Maryam 19:56-57)
In interpretation of the above Qur’anic verse, in the hadith on Al-Israa’ and Al-Miraj recorded by Al-Bukhari, Anas reported: “When Gabriel passed by Idris (in Heaven), he (Idris) greeted: ‘Welcome, O good prophet and good brother!’ I (Prophet Muhammad) wondered: ‘Who is this?’ He (Gabriel) said: ‘This is Idris…”
Islam’s praise and honoring of Prophet Idris did not overstep the boundaries of consistency, reasonability and logicality. Islam just stated that it admitted him into the mercy of God, being a prophet among the righteous and men of truth, and that he was raised to a high station.
Though such a “high station” is given different interpretations by Muslim exegetes, there is no conclusive evidence that Idris did not die, a fact consisting with the Islamic negation of the worldly life eternity. We read:
And We did not grant to any man before you eternity [on earth]; so if you die – would they be eternal? (Al-Anbiya 21:34)
As for Christianity, it claims that Idris (Enoch) and Elijah (2 Kings 2:1) were risen to Heaven and did not die, which does not consist with Jesus’ reported negation of ascension to Heaven for everybody other than him. We read: “No one has ascended into heaven except the one who descended from heaven—the Son of Man.” (John 3:13)
If Christians really believe in the ascension of both Enoch (Idris) and Elijah despite Jesus’ negation of ascension for everybody other than him, why do they refuse to believe in Prophet Muhammad’s miracle of Al-Israa’ and Al-Miraj?
- The Glorious Qur’an
- Sahih Al-Bukhari
- The Holy Bible
16-Prophet Elias (Elijah)
20-Prophet Yahya (John)