Categories
Muhammad Polemical Rebuttals

Will the Real “Demon-Possessed” Prophet Please Stand Up?

The following is our partial response to the tirade authored by the belligerent Christian missionary Sam Shamoun, to be found here. This article will clearly establish Prophet Muhammad(P) as the true Prophet, insha’Allah. In the forthcoming papers, we will provide a detailed critique of the shoddy polemics of the missionary, together with a detailed examination of his false prophet Paul.

Magic Effect On The Prophet

Although we will address this polemic in detail in the subsequent papers, let us make one thing clear: Having magic worked upon a person does not make that person “demon-possessed”. There is no doubt that Christian missionaries like Sam Shamoun can only insult and malign Islam because they do not have a valid argument against it. But it is important for all Muslims reading this article to refrain from “returning fire” and insult the religion of Christianity, or making insulting caricatures of any of the characters in the Bible, despite the fact, that there are several stories in the Bible, which people can make hilarious parodies about. This is very important. And this is exactly what Answering Islam wants Muslims to do, so they can say, “There, look! See I told you, that’s how Muslims are!”.

Of course, there are several atheist websites which completely mocks Jesus(P) and create gross caricatures about him, but we will not link to them. Instead, we will respond with sound irrefutable arguments and dismantle the missionary’s deception, God willing.

The type of attacks the missionary has levelled against the Prophet(P) is not new. Rather, we read in history, that smutty Christians the likes of Shamoun have a long and horrific track record of accusing innocent people of being demon-possessed. One of the most blatant examples was the infamous Salem Witch Trials, in which dozens of innocent people were accused of being witches and demon-possessed and then executed by pious Christians. The Puritans who conducted these inquisitions concocted their own personal criteria on who was a “witch” or “demon-possessed”, and then made it the law.

This neo-puritan Sam Shamoun, does exactly the same thing with Prophet Muhammad(P). Nevertheless, Sam Shamoun is not fooling anyone, as many of his fellow Christians who have left his faith, have made a parody in which they expose this type of ignorant behaviour, in which Shamoun is engaged in.

There is not a single shred of evidence which would indicate that if a person has magic worked on him, he is “demon-possessed”, as Shamoun fantasizes. For the Muslim, the story of magic only increases his faith in Islam, because this shows how the forces of evil tried so desperately to attack the Prophet(P), yet, Prophet Muhammad(P) had unwavering faith, and by the help of God, they were defeated and sent into retreat, humiliated. Shamoun simply took this story and made his own disgusting caricature, based on meaningless unproven criteria such as the Bible. We will at a later time, address each and every one of his arguments point by point.

As you will soon see if we take the missionary?s phoney criteria, and apply it to the Jesus of the Bible, you will see that Jesus Christ was 1000 times more demon-possessed and evil than anyone, and the missionary will be forced to admit that his lord and saviour, was actually a “demon”. So do Jesus a favour, and refrain from such insults, which can easily be turned around against him.

Jesus Was Demon-Possessed

Let us ask a question: if you were walking home one day, and out of nowhere, Satan appeared to you, and said, “Come here and follow me, I want to take you somewhere”, would you go? Any true believer in God will immediately rebuke Satan right then and there, and shout NEVER! GO TO HELL SATAN! STAY AWAY FROM ME! Perhaps, they may even pick up a baseball bat and start swinging till the evil spirit runs away. Or run for their lives in the opposite direction.

But not the Jesus of the Bible. Shockingly, the Bible teaches in Mathew 4:5-8 that the devil appeared to Jesus, and asked him to go (mountain-climbing) with him, and instead of striking out against Satan right then and there, Jesus actually accepted Satan’s invitation, and together, Satan and Jesus went mountain climbing. Here are the verses in question, or better put, Christianity’s Satanic verses, Matthew ch. 4 vs. 8:

4:5

Then the devil took him to the holy city, and set him on the pinnacle of the temple,

4:6

and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down; for it is written, ‘He will give his angels charge of you,’ and ‘On their hands, they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.'”

4:7

Jesus said to him, “Again it is written, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.'”

4:8

Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and the glory of them;

The Bible does not say that there was any kind of fight or resistance on the part of Jesus when Satan appeared to him and invited him to follow him, therefore, we will have to assume that Jesus went willingly. Therefore, we see from this outrageous story in the Bible, that Jesus was clearly “demon-possessed”, so much to the point, that he took Satan as a comrade (wali) and a travelling partner. In addition to that, it is clear, that Jesus was NOT sinless. Answering the call of Satan, is a sin. This is simply an irreconcilable contradiction. This story is much worse according to Shamoun’s standards than simply having magic worked on a person, and then later God defeating those agents. Please keep in mind, that Muslims firmly believe in Jesus(P), but we do not believe in the man-made stories about Jesus(P) that we read in the New Testament.

It gets worse as Jesus was allegedly also suicidal. Jesus openly admits that he committed suicide on the cross in John 10:17-18:

10:17

For this reason, the Father loves me, because I lay down my life, that I may take it again.

10:18

No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have the power to lay it down, and I have the power to take it again; this charge I have received from my Father.”

A psychological analysis reveals that Jesus harboured suicidal tendencies. He saw the moral injustice and strife of the world he lived in, and felt that if he killed himself, he would benefit the world. Perhaps, he suffered from depression. Rather than jumping off a cliff, or slashing his wrists, or leaping in front a heard of roman chariots, he devised an elaborate plan of crucifixion, one which would be an appeal to gain the sympathy of others. and finally, in the end, Jesus committed suicide.

Will the Real “Demon-Possessed Prophet” Please Stand Up?

Let us move away from these “Salem Witch trial”-type inquisitions, in which Shamoun creates artificial criteria solely based upon his personal whims and blind Biblical indoctrination. Despite his 50+ pages of irrelevant and incoherent ranting, the missionary has not proved a thing. Instead, his article is a laughably desperate attempt to export his own personal prejudices to his readers. Although, you will find that the matter is quite simple.

We would like to raise the question, why would we indulge in such personal opinions, and baseless, subjective evidence when, OBJECTIVE VERIFIABLE EVIDENCE EXISTS? If such evidence did exist for Christianity, we are sure we would have seen it by now. But, let us assure you, that no such evidence exists for the Christian faith, and Shamoun’s 50+ page sham monster paper is proof of that. And that is a direct challenge.

Yes, we said objectively verifiable evidence. Therefore, the question begs, does such evidence exist for Islam? The answer is YES. And it will be clear, and undeniable.

Now, ladies and gentlemen, lets move on to the objective clear and concise evidence. But first, let’s remove these meaningless and dubious labels like “demon-possessed” and replace it with something more meaningful and less insidious, like “false prophet”. As it has been demonstrated in the following article, Christianity rests upon the truth claim of an alleged “prophet” who came after Jesus, Paul.

Let us now examine the religion of Paul and the religion of Prophet Muhammad(P) and we will see if these religions have the foresight of addressing the problems of today’s society, or do they lead to destruction. Before we begin, we would encourage everyone to read and understand the following article.

Our society is literally being eaten alive by these terrible vices of drugs like cocaine, marijuana, heroin etc. There is no need to go into detail at all of the destructive nature of these drugs, and the terrible toll it has taken on our youth and society. That is a given. We believe both Muslims and Christians, agree that these drugs, are the vices of Satan, and lead to destruction. Therefore, we need to ask: What do these two religions say about using drugs like cocaine, marijuana, heroin, ecstasy. etc?

As we have seen from the article and Ahmed-Slick debate, Paul’s religion (Christianity) allows for drug abuse such as cocaine, marijuana and heroin. There is no condemnation of these drugs at all.

Yet Prophet Muhammad(P)‘s Islam, unlike Paul’s Christianity, has completely forbidden all illicit forms of drug abuse. How can a false religion, or as the missionary puts it, a “demon-possessed” religion, condemn one of the evilest and luring poisons of Satan, his pride and joy, all the while God’s supposedly-true religion, Christianity, allows it?

That is the most asinine, lame-brained and monstrous statement anyone can make!

Therefore, the matter is crystal clear according to the evidence, as to who is the false prophet. That false prophet is none other than Paul. And the true Prophet is Muhammad.

There is no need to go further, but let us bring up a few more points. As we have seen from the debate and the article, Paul’s Christianity allows women and men to wear whatever they want, it is completely based upon the individual’s subjective taste. Prophet Muhammad(P)‘s Islam, of course, has a clear dress code which aids in preventing lewdness.

Paul’s Christianity allows men and woman to engage in all kinds of sexual behaviours except intercourse, Prophet Muhammad(P)‘s Islam forbids all sexual or non-sexual contact till marriage.

Here is thus the lifestyle which is promoted by Paul’s Christianity:

Men and woman walking around in tight fitted, skimpy outfits exposing much of their parts like that of Britney Spears, her style of dancing is also completely allowed, each one engaged in flirting and indiscreetly seducing each other (there is no condemnation in the Bible for any of this), and not only that, but engaging in several if not all sexual acts except for sexual intercourse, engaging in “mashing”, and all the free cocaine, heroin and marijuana that they desire. Please keep in mind, all of this behaviour as mentioned above, completely falls within the guidelines of Biblical moral conduct. No wonder we have a screwed up society.

Islam clearly forbids this destructive lifestyle. The reason why we used the word promotes instead of allows, is because, it is the nature for the average human being seeks the path of least resistance, although not all. If two ways are presented before the average human, he is going to pick the apparently easier path. Therefore, the average Christian would like to live within the guidelines of Biblical morality, and not create any “extra work” for themselves.

Christianity as compared to Islam appears to some much more attractive, due to the moral “freedom” which it offers. In many Muslim-Christian marriages, oftentimes the children chose to become part of Paul’s Christianity because they desperately desire to be on the cheerleading team at school, engage in dating, experiment with different types of sexual contact, drinking, drugs, wearing “Britney Spears”-type of dressing, nude or erotic dancing, all of which is well within the guidelines of Paul’s Christianity. Prophet Muhammad’s(P) Islam, on the other hand, crashes the party and sends everyone home.

It is said that many of these children at that age are not mature enough to see that they are being lured by the false apostle Paul, may Allah save us from this wickedness. This is because the “freedom”, which Paul’s Christianity offers, is a major marketing tool for his religion. You know the saying, “there is always free cheese in the mousetrap”.

Conclusion

In conclusion, we have spared Sam Shamoun’s prophet from derogatory terms such as “demon-possessed”. The truth has no need for such antics.

In addition to that, we want to extend this invitation to leave Paul’s religion and come to the truth of Islam.

Accept the truth of Islam, before it is too late. Come to Islam!

Cite this article as: Bismika Allahuma Team, "Will the Real “Demon-Possessed” Prophet Please Stand Up?," in Bismika Allahuma, September 20, 2005, last accessed September 25, 2022, https://bismikaallahuma.org/muhammad/demon-possessed-prophet/
Categories
Islam Muhammad

What About The Killing of Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf?

The Christian missionaries and the enemies of Islam have alleged that the Prophet Muhammad(P) was an “assassin” who would “kill his opponents in the middle of the night using deceit and lies”. They cite the events of the killing of Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf as evidence for their claims. Our contention is that these bigots are abusing the historical events surrounding these incidents. This is because they are unaware of the circumstances leading to their killing, or why the Prophet(P) had allowed it to happen.

It is, therefore, our wish to discuss this issue in its proper perspective, and stifle their lies once and for all, insha’Allah.

Who Was Kaab al-Ashraf?

Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf was a Jew. He used to insult Muslims and especially Muslim women. He had been later killed by a Muslim, through the permission of the Noble Prophet(P). This account is present in Sirat Rasul Allah by Ibn Ishaq.1

The following is the account in our own words:

    The Prophet asked who would get rid of Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf for him. A Muslim man responded that he would. Sadly, the Muslim who agreed with the Prophet did not eat for three days (except for that which was required). When this was informed to the Prophet, the Prophet asked him the reason. The man told him that he had taken a responsibility (to kill Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf) which he could not handle. So the Muslim asked the Prophet’s permission to tell lies or to deceive Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf. The Prophet gave him permission. The Muslim went to Ka’b ibn al-Ashraf, said something deceptive, and made him come out of his house and then killed him.

The attack raised by anti-Islamics here is that the Prophet(P) gave another man to do the job and gave him permission to lie.

We must, first of all, understand that the situation of the Muslims was very precarious, even in the aftermath of their victory at Badr. Even though the Quraysh Meccans were defeated and had retreated back to the city to lick their wounds and mourn their dead, the Muslims still face the danger of internal dissent within the walls of Madinah.

Indeed, the Muslims had just expelled the Banu Qaynuqa from their homes after their open declaration of war against the Prophet and the early Muslim community.

The Banu Qaynuqa were the first of the Jews to break their agreement with the Muslims and go to war and had to be dealt with swiftly so as to quash any ideas of the other Jewish tribes to instigate a war against the Muslims.2

It was within the context of this situation that Ka’ab bin Al-Ashraf took advantage of, by inveighing against the Prophet and reciting verses bewailing the Quraysh who were slain at Badr.

Among the lines of the aforementioned verses are:

Badr’s mill ground out the blood of its people
At events like Badr you should weep and cry
The best of the people were slain round their cisterns
Don’t think it strange that the princes were left lying.
How many noble handsome men,
The refugee of the homeless was slain,
Liberal when the stars gave no rain,
Who bore others’ burdens, ruling and taking their due fourth,
Some people whose anger pleases me say
“Ka’ab b. al-Ashraf is utterly dejected”.
They are right. O that the earth when they were killed
Had split asunder and engulfed its people,
That he who spread the report had been thrust through
Or lived cowering blind and deaf.
I was told that all the Banu’l-Mughira were humiliated
And brought low by the death of Abu’l-Hakim
And the two sons of Rabi’a with him,
And Munabbih and the others did not attain (such honour) as those who were slain
3

In the last stanza of this poetry by Ka’ab, he had committed a transgression of the earlier covenant signed between the Muslims and his tribe with the following words of incitement:

I was told that al-Harith ibn Hisham
Is doing well and gathering troops
To visit Yathrib with armies,
For only the noble, handsome man protects the loftiest reputation.
4

Furthermore, Ka’b had composed several amatory verses in defamation of the honour of a Muslim woman by the name of Ummu’l-Fadl bint al-Harith:

Are you off without stopping in the valley
And leaving Ummu’l-Fadl in Mecca?
Out would come what she bought from the pedlar of bottles,
Henna and hair dye.
What lies ‘twixt ankle and elbow in motion
When she tries to stand and does not.
5

The significance of “what lies ‘twixt ankle and elbow in motion” is explained in the footnote by the translator of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah as:

Presumably her buttocks are meant; they would be between her ankle and her elbow as she reclined. Large and heavy buttocks were marks of female beauty among the old Arabs.6

A poet of pre-Islamic days expresses the Arab sentiment of chastity and virtuousness in a couplet, which depicts a lovely picture of Arab womanhood: “If my glance meets the looks of a neighbouring maiden, I cast my eyes low until her abode takes her in”.

Hence, it was within the context of the above incitements made by Ka’ab bin Al-Ashraf which was why the Muslims were agitated when their women were being dishonoured and public sentiment called for his punishment.

Punishable Treason

As we have stated before, Ka’ab’s actions were against a clause in the Madinah Covenant signed between the Muslims and the Jews of Madinah.

The relevant stipulation of this covenant is as follows:

Loyalty is a protection against treachery. The freedmen of Thalaba are as themselves. The close friends are as themselves. None of them shall go out to war save with the permission of Muhammad, but he shall not be prevented from taking revenge for a wound. He who slays a man without warning slays himself and his whole household unless it is one who has wronged him, for God will accept that. The Jews must bear their expenses and the Muslims their expenses. Each must help the other against anyone who attacks the people of this document. They must seek mutual advice and consultation, and loyalty is a protection against treachery. A man is not liable for his ally’s misdeeds. The wronged must be helped. The Jews must pay with the believers so long as the war lasts. Yathrib shall be a sanctuary for the people of this document. A stranger under protection shall be as his host doing no harm and committing no crime. A woman shall only be given protection with the consent of her family. If any dispute or controversy likely to cause trouble should arise it must be referred to God and to Muhammad the apostle of God. God accepts what is nearest to piety and goodness in this document. Quraysh and their helpers shall not be given protection.

His acts were openly directed against the Commonwealth, of which he was a member. It is therefore clear that Ka’ab bin Al-Ashraf’s antagonism towards the Muslim community was his own undoing, and was no longer protected by the covenant that he himself had violated.

Akram Diya’ al-Umari remarks:

The killing of Ibn al Ashraf might be seen as an act of treachery, but on further reflection, one realizes that Ibn al Ashraf was party to the treaty according to the Document by which the Jews of Banu al-Nadir and others were committed. By slandering the Prophet, who was the head of state, and by showing his sympathy for the enemies of the Muslims (lamenting their dead and inciting them against the Muslims), Ibn al Ashraf had broken the treaty and declared war on the Muslims, and his blood could be shed with impunity. As for his being deceived and killed by those he had trusted, such action is legally permissible (ja’iz) in the case of those who have declared war on the Muslims, and it was carried out by order of the Messenger (See al Tahawi, Mushkil al-Athar). The Messenger, however, did not blame Banu al-Nadir for Ibn al Ashraf’s crime; it was sufficient to have him killed for his treachery. The Prophet, in fact, renewed his treaty with them (Banu al-Nadir).7

However, some may object that Ka’ab bin Al-Ashraf was merely composing “poetries” as a form of “freedom of expression”, and therefore was not causing any “harm” to anyone around him. Those who say this certainly do not understand the significance of the blasphemous poetry by Ka’ab bin Al-Ashraf. Arabic poetry is a priori very influential and cannot be thought of in the terms of English poetry or any other forms of poetry in other languages.

As Philip K. Hitti himself notes:

No people in the world, perhaps, manifest such enthusiastic admiration for literary expression and are so moved by the word, spoken or written, as the Arabs. Hardly any language seems capable of exercising over the minds of its users such irresistible influence as Arabic.8

After noting Ka’ab bin Al-Ashraf’s acts of incitement and false accusations towards Muslim women, Haykal says that:

The reader is perhaps aware of Arab customs and ethics in this regard, and can appreciate the Muslims’ anxiety over such false accusations directed against their women’s honour.9

Certainly, the reader would agree with us that “freedom of expression” certainly does not include the right to defame the honour of another or to incite aggression against a legitimate Government.

Hence it is clear that by modern terms today, Ka’ab bin Al-Ashraf will be duly charged with sedition against the State and for outraging the modesty of a Muslim woman.

A Public Trial for War Criminals?

Controversialists have stigmatized this execution as an “assassination”. And because a Muslim was sent secretly to kill each of the criminals, in their prejudice against the Prophet(P) they shut their eyes to the justice of the sentence, and the necessity of a swift and secret execution. There existed then no police court, no judicial tribunal, nor even a court-martial, to take cognisance of individual crimes.

In the absence of a State executioner, any individual might become the executioner of the law. This man had broken their formal pact — it was impossible to arrest him in public, or execute the sentence in the open before their clans, without causing unnecessary bloodshed, and giving rise to the feud of blood and everlasting vendetta. The exigencies of the State required that whatever should be done should be done swiftly and noiselessly upon those whom public opinion had arraigned and condemned.

Conclusions

It is clear that where the killing of Ka’ab bin Al-Ashraf was concerned, it was done as a deterrent against crimes committed against the public and infringements of the promulgated law. In light of this, there was locus standi to take action on this matter. What was done to stop Ka’ab Al-Ashraf from spreading his mischief was totally justified.

In considering the punishments that were dealt with the enemies of Islam, we must not forget, first, that they were political actions made necessary by the conditions of the time; second, that none of them were excessively unacceptable by the usages or mores of that time.

And only God knows best!

  1. We have depended upon the translation of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah by A. Guillaume, The Life of Muhammad (Oxford University Press, 1978). []
  2. Ibid., p. 363 []
  3. Ibid. []
  4. Ibid. []
  5. Ibid., p. 366 []
  6. ibid. []
  7. Akram Diya al Umari, Madinan Society At The Time of The Prophet, (International Institute of Islamic Thought, 1991) []
  8. Philip K. Hitti, History of the Arabs, 10th edition (Macmillan Press, 1970), p. 90 []
  9. M. H. Haykal, The Life of Muhammad (North American Trust Publications, 1976), p. 244 []
Categories
Muhammad

Muhammad in the Bible: The Shiloh from Arabia

The sceptre shall not depart from Judah, nor a law-giver from between his feet, until Shiloh comes, to whom the Gentiles look forward.1

Jesus was of Judah, and Shiloh was not Jesus. This verse shows that Lawgivers will be only of Judah until Shiloh comes as a Lawgiver for the Gentiles. That includes Jesus, who was sent only to the children of Israel by his own testimony2, and explicitly does not include Shiloh, who is not of Judah, and is sent to the nations of the Gentiles as a Lawgiver.

Jesus was not sent to the nations as a Lawgiver, but to Israel as their Messiah, with the Good News that Israel had promised to spread to the nations of the Gentiles, thus fulfilling the Law of Moses — it was Israel as a nation that was sent to the Gentiles, as bearers of the Good News, not Jesus himself. That Good News told about a new Law yet to come, it was not itself a new Law, and Jesus affirmed the Law of Moses and explicitly told the children of Israel that God’s Kingdom would be taken from them and given to a people who would bear its fruits.

That definitely was not Pauline Christianity or any successor of Jesus, as Jesus himself said.

It is virtually impossible to read and comprehend the Israeli-altered Scripture without taking into account everything it says and identifying the prophecies that had not been fulfilled at the time of Jesus’ departure, and knowing what has since happened in the Promised Land ~ including a thousand years, in Jerusalem and the Promised Land that came after Jesus had long gone, which are missing from European and other Western history books.

God did not disappear from the Promised Land when the Romans occupied Palestine, and the prophecy did not disappear or change focus from the Promised Land when Paul went to Greece and Rome. Today’s Pauline preachers and doppelganger pseudo-prophets look at the Promised Land only until the destruction of the Second Temple, and after that look only at the Roman Empire and never at the Promised Land.

This is because Shiloh came — in the Promised Land, after Jesus — as prophesied in Scripture, “suddenly to his temple”3, which does not describe Jesus, “from Mount Paran … with ten thousands of saints, from his right hand a fiery Law for them,” which also does not describe Jesus, who “rose up from Seir”4. Those prophecies had not been fulfilled at the time of Jesus’ departure.

The Promised Land

“The inhabitants of the land of Tema brought water to him that was thirsty; they met with their bread him that fled”5. That does not describe Jesus or anyone before him.

“For they fled from the swords, from the drawn sword, and from the bent bow, and from the grievousness of war” — fulfilled literally with physical drawn swords and bent bows and an ongoing war, which never happened with Jesus — and “Within a year, according to the years of an hireling, and all the glory of Kedar shall fail” — which is obviously not Jesus.

“And the residue of the number of archers, the mighty men of the children of Kedar, shall be diminished” — and literally a third of the nobility of Kedar died in a pitched physical battle on the ground, less than a year later, but not at all during the time of Jesus or before his time. Shiloh, migrating from Kedar to Tema, spending three full days and three full nights in the belly of the earth, and transforming the Promised Land and making it new, including a “new Jerusalem” sent down from the heavens, all exactly as prophesied in Scripture, none of which resembles anything that Jesus did or was expected to do or had happened before his time. Biblical prophecies for which the Bible itself shows no fulfilment at all.

All of these prophecies in Scripture about the Messenger of the Covenant6, which Jesus did not fulfil in any way at all7, was fulfilled to the letter, exactly as Scripture describes them, with no ambiguity or need for “interpretation” whatsoever. No mystery to it at all, it happened in this world, in physical reality, exactly as Scripture said it would — the same Scripture that does not record the fulfillment of those prophecies.

But you people expect to hear it from the Jews? Are you daft? All you get from those sources is falsity and treachery. Charged to deliver the Good News that Jesus brought, they falsified everything before he even arrived to point to their fraud against you. And after he had left, who do you suppose wrote the history? The scribes and Pharisees wrote it, and Constantine got it from Paul’s conveniently-collected writings, and canonized it as Christianity, a “new religion.” Jesus did not bring any “new religion”.

Jesus drove the money changers out of the Temple. But read Malachi 3:5 where it says:

“I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside a sojourner”

These are all very explicit in those terms with Shiloh, the Messenger of the Covenant, who came.

His people “pray shoulder to shoulder”; seek refuge in the Name of God; gather for pilgrimage every year, saying “At Your service, O God, here I am at Your service” — all exactly as described in detail by Scripture but nowhere fulfilled before the departure of Jesus.

So you can play with speculative freemasonry all you want, and it will not lead you to Jabal Tariq — Gibraltar — or the British for anything other than perpetual deception and pie-in-the-sky “not of this world” mysteries with no relevance to liberty and success in this life and the next.

And Genesis 49:10 had nothing to do with Jesus. See Genesis 9:27, after the time of Shem. In Israel there is no peace, says the Sovereign Lord.

Cite this article as: Bismika Allahuma Team, "Muhammad in the Bible: The Shiloh from Arabia," in Bismika Allahuma, January 14, 2007, last accessed September 25, 2022, https://bismikaallahuma.org/muhammad/shiloh-from-arabia/
  1. Genesis 49:10 []
  2. qv. Matthew 15:24 []
  3. qv. Malachi 3:1 []
  4. qv. Deuteronomy 33:2 []
  5. qv. Isaiah 21:14 []
  6. qv. Malachi 3:1 []
  7. Although Jesus himself said that he had done everything he was sent to do, qv. John 17:4 []
Categories
Muhammad Polemical Rebuttals

The Christian Missionaries and the “Mystery” of Peace Be Upon Him

There is a common claim circulated in Christian Arab circles with regard to the beatific phrase (sallallahu `alayhi was-sallam) which comes as an eulogy to the Prophet’s name, translated as “peace be upon him” or often abbreviated as PBUH. It was first propagated in the English-speaking world by the Christian Arab missionary, Anis Shorrosh1, who claimed that this eulogy does not literally mean “peace be upon him” but “occurs in the Quranic text” and:

    …literally reads, “Lo! Allah and His angels pray upon the prophet. Oh yea who believe, pray on him and salute him with peace.”

    One is utterly confounded when the literal and real translation is understood. Why do our Muslim friends hide the real meaning of pbuh? Is it because the Arabic statement is embarrassing since it contradicts Muslim doctrine?2

In the usual vein of missionary tradition, Shorrosh goes on to take the opportunity to blaspheme and make mockery of Allah(T) by accusing Him of praying[!] to a subject, but we shall not bother to cite further from his blasphemous work. Other Christian Arab polemicists such as Labib Mikhail3 and the pseudonymous Abdullah Al-Araby4 had followed suit in repeating this polemic.

As expected, the rest of the Christian missionary world is not too far behind and they jumped on the bandwagon by rehashing a version of the argument proposed by these pseudo-intellectuals. Related to this is the argument that was recently repeated by the Christian missionary Shamoun in reference to several Qur’anic verses5, alleging that:

    Since these verses all clearly say that Allah literally prays, and since prayer requires an object, we must, therefore, ask to whom does Allah pray? Muslims claim that Allah is a singular entity, there being no plurality of persons within his Being, which means that Allah cannot be praying to himself. Or is he? Maybe Allah does in fact pray to himself.

Let us now directly address the issue of the phrase “peace be upon him” which the Christianity missionaries are fond of disputing.

The Verb salla In Pre-Islamic Usage

In linguistics there is a phenomenon that is known as polysemy, which is defined as a word or phrase that may carry multiple dimensions or meanings in different situations. Ahmad Shehu Abdussalam explains it in the following:

Polysemy is a semantic state of a word in which it indicates two or more meanings. A word is polysemous when it looks the same as others and has more than one meaning…These varied meanings are known as “senses” (al-wujuh in the sciences of the Qur’an), and can be interrelated, shared in certain attributes or slightly different, indicating multiplicity of meaning, while varied forms of the same word, if any, are the “uses” (al-naza’ir in the sciences of the Qur’an). The word al-akhirah, with only one form (i.e., a use) has five senses: resurrection, paradise, hell, grave and the latter (Qur’an 92:13, 2:102, 39:9, 14:27 and 38:7 respectively).6

From the standpoint of the Arabic language, there is no reason to assume or charge that this phrase “contradicts Muslim doctrine” as Shorrosh alleges or that God is “praying to himself” as Shamoun claims, since it is known that in the context of usage for the verb salla, it generally meant as “to invoke blessings upon someone”. This usage is consistent in both pre-Qur’anic and the post-Qur’anic literature.7

The following are some very interesting examples of its usage in pre-Islamic poetry.

The poet al-A’sha in describing how wine is preserved, says that:


    And (the wine-dealer) exposed it to the wind in a jar, then invoked blessings upon (wa salla ala) the jar and sought assistance from God (so that the wine might not turn sour).8

Noteworthy of this poetry is its usage in first “invoking blessings upon” (wa salla ala) the jar, and at the same time attempts to “sought assistance from God” with regard to the contents of the jar, hence signifying that the usage of the verb salla certainly does not mean “to pray upon” the subject as a deity. Rather, it is clear from this usage of this particular pre-Islamic verse that the idea of “invoking blessings [salla] upon” the subject is not an indication of direct worship, as it is inconceivable that a person would “worship” the jar and seek assistance from God, both at the same time! Thus from the above verse, it is enough to demolish the claims of Shorrosh and Shamoun combined.

Yet we are obliged to add further salt to the wound of the missionaries’ blunder. Similarly, another pre-Islamic poem composed in praise of the Emperor of the Persian Empire by the poet ‘Antarah uses the verb salla as follows:


    “All the kings of the earth pay homage [salla] to him from all places of the world (lit. from every valley-path); all people on earth turn their face towards him.”9

An amusing missionary objection to the above is that all the kings of the earth were worshipping the Emperor literally when it is clear that there is certainly no such indication by the poet ‘Antarah. On the contrary, it is obvious even from the translation of this poem that the poet is invoking a glorification upon the Persian Emperor, rather than any indication of any form of worship.

Thus from the above exposition, it is clear that there is no reason to be “utterly confounded when the literal and real translation is understood” as Shorrosh alleges since the usage of salla has been in existence since pre-Islamic times.

The Verb salla In Islamic Usage

In the case of the phrase sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam, it is understood as an eulogy of God giving His Blessings upon someone10. Hans Wehr’s Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic defines salla as thus:

This translation is consistent elsewhere and Wehr confirms it as follows:

This is different from sallah, ritual prayer or worship in the connotations that the Christian missionaries intend it to be:

Would the missionaries now accuse Wehr of “embarrassment”, so much so that he translated sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam as “God bless him and grant him salvation!” in his dictionary? Indeed, it is rather embarrassing for the missionaries to polemicize such a trivial matter.

What About Abraham And His Family?

So far, the main crux of the Christian missionary disparagement is that the verb salla is invoked upon the Prophet Muhammad, upon whom be peace. The only reason that they are even raising the issue, if at all, is because the Prophet sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam is mentioned in God’s infinite Blessings. However, the missionaries are wrong to assume that only the Prophet Muhammad(P) is given this treatment as Muslims also apply this phrase to the Prophet Abraham(P) and his family in their daily prayers.


    O Allah! Send Your Mercy [salla] upon Muhammad and on his family [wives and his offspring], as You sent Your Mercy [salla] on Abraham’s family; and send Your Blessings on Muhammad and his family, as You sent Your Blessings on Abraham’s family, in the world, for You are the Most Praise-worthy, the Most Glorious.14

Now the missionaries have a problem that they have created for themselves. If it is true that the Prophet Muhammad(P) is the only Prophet that God “worships” to, they then have to explain how did this invocation which every Muslim recite in his prayers came about, and why the Prophet Abraham(P) is now mentioned in this prayer. For if we were to read the above prayer according to their interpretation, we would hence notice that:

    (a) The Prophet Abraham(P) and his family is yet among the various people that God Almighty “prays to”;

    and;

    (b) The whole prayer above does not make any logical sense since the supplication is directed at God and it also states that God is the Most Praise-worthy and the Most Glorious.

Hence we can witness yet again the silliness of such a polemic which contravenes the strict monotheism of Islam. For now God does not only “pray to” Muhammad(P) and his family but He also indulges in the “worship” of Abraham(P) and his family! How hilarious it is to see the missionaries digging a hole for themselves for which there is no way out.

Conclusions

Contrary to their claim, the verb salla indicates “praying to” a subject is not true and is a common polemic popularised by the Christian Arabs who only fall into the trap of their own ignorance of the Arabic language and its nuances. It is hence not surprising that their gullible English-speaking counterparts would, therefore, be eager to “snap up” such a polemic in verbatim — if only to discredit the religion of Islam — no matter whether the claim is true or otherwise. Thus do the missionaries attempt to disrupt universal consensus of Islam concerning God’s existence and unity, and of man’s obligation to serve Him by fulfilling His commandments which are the summum bonum: “We have sent no messenger but with the revelation that men are commanded to serve God and to avoid evil” (Qur’an 16:36).

It should be seriously noted that the Islamic dogma which was already well-developed by the turn of 2nd century A.H. had employed the beatific phrase sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam without any “embarrassment” whatsoever attached to it. Certainly, if the Muslims in that era had adopted the warped understanding of the missionaries in verbatim with regard to the root word/verb salla this beatific phrase would have never been used today by the Muslims!

It is also equally clear that even with the recent missionary “treatment” of the subject, there is no valid justification for their claim apart from their extreme perjury and hatred of Islam, i.e. Islamophobia. For each time the name “Muhammad” is mentioned, the hair bristles on their neck and they shamelessly assault the Prophet, sallallahu `alayhi wa sallam, by appealing to their fatuous theories and false accounts of history.

Hence, the misguided attempts of the Christian missionaries to negate the strict monotheism of Islam with their abuse of the verb salla falls flat to the ground, as do all those who lie and blaspheme for the non-existent, pseudo-monotheistic “Triune” god.

And only Allah(T) knows best, for He alone is worthy of worship.

Cite this article as: Bismika Allahuma Team, "The Christian Missionaries and the “Mystery” of Peace Be Upon Him," in Bismika Allahuma, October 15, 2005, last accessed September 25, 2022, https://bismikaallahuma.org/muhammad/peace-be-upon-him/
  1. Anis A. Shorrosh, Islam Revealed: A Christian Arab’s View of Islam, (Thomas Nelson Publishers, 1988) []
  2. ibid., p. 179 []
  3. Labib Mikhail, Islam, Muhammad and the Koran: A Documentary Analysis [Online Document] []
  4. Abdullah Al-Araby (pseudonym), Islam Review [Online Document] []
  5. See 2:157, 33:43, 33:56 []
  6. Ahmad Shehu Abdussalam, Concordance of the Qur’an (International Islamic University of Malaysia Press:2008), p. 23 []
  7. Toshihiko Izutsu, God and Man in the Qur’an: Semantics of the Qur’anic Weltanschauung, (IBT, Kuala Lumpur, 2002), p. 160 []
  8. ibid., cf. Lisan al-‘Arab, p. 242; irtasama means “pray to God for protection”, but according to Abh, the verb here means “to seal up the jar tightly”. []
  9. ibid. []
  10. The Hans Wehr Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic, ed. J. M. Cowan, (Spoken Language Services, NY, 1976), p. 524 []
  11. The Hans Wehr Dictionary of Modern Written Arabic, ed. J. M. Cowan, (Spoken Language Services, NY, 1976), p. 524 []
  12. ibid., p. 523 []
  13. op. cit. []
  14. al-Hafiz Imam Ibn Hajar al-‘Asqalani, Kitab Bulughul Maram, hadith no. 336 []
Categories
Islam Muhammad Polemical Rebuttals

The State of Prophet Muhammad’s Religious Beliefs Before the Advent of Prophethood

Introduction

The missionaries have recently introduced several claims about the early state of the Prophet Muhammad’s(P) religious beliefs. Their aim is to show that:

    One thing that sticks out in Islam is that most of the rites and practices adopted into the religion are actually pagan customs that Muhammad claimed were sanctioned by God. In fact, we find that Muhammad before, during, and after his mission continued to perform rites that from a biblical perspective are nothing more than idolatry.

It is interesting to note that most of his arguments “from a biblical [SIC] perspective” are nothing new. They are arguments rehashed from orientalists in the last century who allege that the Prophet’s(P) religious attitude and practices prior to the coming of the Revelations were no different from his people. Most of these claims were spearheaded by D.S. Margoliuth1 and subsequent writers followed him, including this missionary whom we are addressing. While the motivations of Margoliuth and the missionary in making these allegations are not the same, the similarities of Margoliuth’s claims and the missionary article in question are based on several points, namely that:

  • He [the Prophet(P)] confessed to have at one time sacrificed an ewe to al-‘Uzza.
  • It was the monotheist Zaid bin ‘Amr who inspired the Prophet to dislike meat offered to other idols.
  • The Prophet(P) had retained several practices of pre-Islamic Arabia, of which the missionary takes it even further to claim that they were “repackaged it in a monotheistic context”.

M. Mohar Ali in his magnum opus Sirat al-Nabi and the Orientalists2 have responded to Margoliuth’s argument in detail under the sub-heading “CONCERNING THE STATE OF HIS [the Prophet Muhammad’s(P)] RELIGIOUS BELIEFS”.

Hence our proceeding material will be based on this relevant chapter3 of M. Mohar Ali and serves as a rebuttal to both the Orientalist Margoliuth and the missionary article which is loosely based upon this work, insha’allah.

Addressing The Issues:

A. Concerning The Sacrifice of An Ewe to al-‘Uzza

With regard to the claim that the Prophet(P) had allegedly “confessed” to have sacrificed an ewe to al-‘Uzza, this is based on the argument of Margoliuth who had cited on the authority of J. Wellhausen’s Reste, 34.4 This latter scholar in fact bases his assertion on a report which occurs in the work of Yaqut and also in that of Abu Mundhir (Ibn al-Kalbi) which the missionary cites as a second-hand quotation from F. E. Peters5.

The report is quoted by Yaqut as follows:

“Abu al-Mundhir has said: “We heard that the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be on him, mentioned her [Al-‘Uzza] once and said: I offered a grey sheep to Al-‘Uzza when I was following the religion of my people.”

Now, all the recognised authorities on the hadith literature treat this Abi al-Mundhir as a notorious falsifier and fabricator of traditions and declare unanimously that he should not at all be trusted and relied upon in matters concerning the Prophet’s(P) character and questions of legal and theological rules.

Thus Ibn Hibban, one of the early authorities on the hadith, characterizes Abi al-Mundhir as an extreme Shi’ite, very prolix in telling strange stories and reports of which there is no foundation in fact.

Ibn Hibban further says that Abi al-Mundhir’s mistakes and fabrications are so notorious that they do not require a description6.

Similarly Ibn Hajar castigates Abi al-Mundhir and quotes of Ahmad ibn Hanbal as saying that he (Abi al-Mundhir) was a cheap story-teller and gossip-monger. Ibn Hajar also quotes Al-Daraqutni as saying that Abi al-Mundhir is always to be avoided.7

Equally unfavourable is the opinion of Al-Dhahabi. He mentions that Ibn ‘Asakir characterized him as Rafidi.8 These are by way of examples only.

Abi al-Mundhir himself confesses to his having on various occassions fabricated reports and provided false information.9 Even by his own wording of the report under consideration it is a mere hearsay.

Thus the report which the orientalists and the missionary himself relies on has been rejected as a fabricated and unreliable one long before the appearance of their writings. It stands condemned as a hearsay by the admission of Ibn al-Kalbi himself.

B. Concerning The Hanif Zayd ibn ‘Amr

Margoliuth had cited a tradition recorded in the Musnad10 to further his claim that it was the monotheist Zayd ibn ‘Amr who is reported to have “inspired” the Prophet(P) to dislike the meat offered to the idols. In this tradition it is recorded that Zayd ibn Amr ibn Nufayl once passed by the Prophet(P) and Zayd ibn Harithah. At that time Zayd ibn ‘Amr was asked to partake of a meal prepared for the former two but he declined to do so saying that he did not eat anything slaughtered on an altar (nusub). The narrator adds that thereafter the Prophet(P) was not seen eating anything slaughtered on the altar.

This tradition about a meeting between the Prophet(P) and Zayd ibn ‘Amr ibn Nufayl and the incident of the meal has come down to us through different chains of narrators in various versions with considerable additions and alterations.[11] This fact is in itself a clear proof that things have been mixed up in the course of transmission of the report. So far as the report in the Musnad is concerned a few points need to be noted specially. In the first place, among its narrators is Mas’?d? about whom it is generally held that he used to mix up matters and that therefore any report coming from him could not be cited as evidence. Also two other narrators, Nufayl ibn Hisham and his father Hisham (ibn Sa’ad) are not quite trustworthy. In another version Muhammad ibn ‘Amr ibn ‘Alqam is one of the narrators. He, too, is considered untrustworthy. Hence this particular version in the Musnad is considered “weak”. In fact the entire portion of the report from “Zayd met them” (famr bihma zayd) to the end of his reported remarks is a mixing up of what actually happened. This is evident also from the fact that Al-Bayhaqi gives the report through the same Mas’udi in which this portion does not occur.

Secondly, even when taking the Musnad’s text as it is, it can in no way be shown that the Prophet had slaughtered the animal and prepared the meal. In fact none of the different versions gives such an impression. On the contrary the wordings as well as the tenor of the various versions show clearly that the meal was prepared by others and presented by them to the Prophet and his companion. And as regards the question of eating of the meal, the correct and reliable report given by Bukhari says that once Zayd ibn ‘Amr ibn Nufayl happened to meet the Prophet before his call to Prophethood, at Baldah (near Makka), when such a meal was presented to the Prophet. He refused to partake of it; so did Zayd ibn ‘Amr, adding: “I do not eat what you people slaughter on the altars, etc.”[12] Obviously this expression of Zayd’s, which was a sequel to the Prophet’s earlier refusal to partake of the meal and which Zayd made when he was in turn offered the meal, has been mixed up by some of the narrators and made to appear as though he was the person who first declined to eat of the meal.[13] That things have been mixed up in this narration is obvious when one notes that in one version of this report, the same group of narrators added to their report that the Prophet, while running between Safa and Marwah strictly asked his adopted son Zayd ibn Harithah to neither go near nor to touch the two idols, Isaf and Na’ilah, posted at those two places and which the Makkans would touch when making their ritual runs.

Thus a comparision and collation of the various versions of the report shows that neither did the Prophet slaughter the animal and prepare the meal nor did he partake of it…On the other hand one version of the report in Bukhari, which is unquestionably the more reliable, categorically states that the Prophet was the first person to decline the meal. Also, two other versions of the report from the same group of narrators emphasize, in addition, that the Prophet strictly avoided the idols placed at Saf? and Marwah while making runs between those places. It is also obvious from the different versions that the reported meeting between Zayd ibn ‘Amr and the Prophet took place not long before the latter’s call to Prophethood when his religious attitude, particularly his attitude towards idolatry, must have taken definite shape, especially as we know that he emphatically stated to his wife at an obvious early stage of their conjugal life that he had never worshipped Al-L?t and Al-‘Uzz?. Clearly at that junction of time to which the report under discussion relates the Prophet was in no need to be “inspired” for the first time by Zayd ibn ‘Amr and his like to detest the idols and to avoid meats dedicated to them.

C. On The Retention of Pre-Islamic Practises

Like Margoliuth, the missionary takes issue with the kissing of the Black Stone by indirectly implying that the Prophet had not much of physical repugnancy to idolatry since this practice was retained. The missionary takes this point even further by stating

Abraham would never have placed a black idol for his descendants to kiss, especailly [SIC] in light of the fact that one of his descendants received divine commands forbidding the honoring of any visible object…

In making this assumption the missionary (and Margoliuth included) makes a fundamental error with regard to the original nature of the Black Stone and the purpose of the practice of kissing/touching it. It has been acknowledged that the nature and purpose of the Black Stone is to mark the starting and finishing point of circumambulating (tawaf) the House and that this was done by Abraham(P) himself. According to Ibn al-‘Athir, the Prophet Ibrahim(P), while erecting the Ka`abah, obtained the stone from the nearby mountain of ‘Abu Qubays and placed itin one corner of the Ka`abah so that it might become the starting and finishing point of the tawaf.

Following the Abrahamic tradition the pre-Islamic inhabitants of Makkah and other Arabs used to start their circumbulation of the House from the point of the Black Stone and kiss it. However there is nothing to suggest that the Black Stone was worshipped along with the various idols that surrounded the Ka`abah. Nor is there any hint that they considered the Black Stone to have had any divine attribute or possessing any form of power, much less regarding it as a form of worship or a rite connected with the worship of idols. Hence the suggestion that the retention of the practice is a remnant of idolatry is simply a misinterpretation of its origin and nature. The same could be said of the practices in the hajj and umra’ such as the taw?f and sa’ie. It is certainly not the result of “[t]he number of circumambulation seemingly corresponded to the number of planets which the pagans venerated as deities” as the missionary fantasizes, but it is the continuation of the Abrahamic tradition in Islam. The retention of pre-Islamic practices in Islam are seen as the reaffirmation of the Abrahamic practices and a return to its original pristine purpose, and not as a capitulation to prevailing pagan Arab innovations. See also Do Muslims Worship The Black Stone of the Ka’abah? for a concise answer to the claim that the kissing of the Stone is an idolatrous practice.

Conclusions

From the above information that we have provided, it is clear that there is no way one can assume, as the missionary does at the beginning of his paper, that

….Muhammad before, during, and after his mission continued to perform rites that from a biblical perspective are nothing more than idolatry.

The missionaries will generally go to the extreme of exhibiting a proneness on their part to treat as genuine anything that appears to refect discreditably on the Prophet(P), with total disregard for its isnad. The paper that was written by the missionary claiming that the Prophet(P) had embraced idolatry by relying on weak or rejected narrations is symptomatic of this attitude. It has been shown previously that the “pagan customs” which the missionary chides Islam for dates back to the days of Abraham(P) and the whole Arab nation had regarded it as such. Further, it is even by the admission of the missionary himself that “he [the Prophet Muhammad(P)] entered the Kaba and destroyed every icon or sculptured idol”. Such a blatant contradiction of the purpose of his article with this open admission of his makes us wonder whether the missionary is actually “concerned” for the so-called “idolatry” reminiscent in Islamic practices today, or is he simply (mis)using the hadith literature for the sole aim of disparaging Muslims and the Religion that they adhere to. This is further evident when we read what William Muir has to say on the subject:

We may freely concede that it [Islam] banished forever many of the darker elements of superstition for ages shrouding the [Arabian] Peninsula. Idolatry vanished before the battle-cry of Islam; the doctrine of the Unity and infinite Perfections of God, and a special all-pervading Providence, became a living principle in the hearts and lives of the followers of Mohammad, even as in his own…Nor are social virtues wanting. Brotherly love inculcated towards all within the circle of the faith; infanticide proscribed; orphans to be protected, and slaves treated with considerations; intoxicating drinks prohibited, so that Mohammadanism [Islam] may boast of a degree of temperance unknown to any other creed.[14]

The answer is certainly obvious to all except for those mired in their welling hatred for Islam and what it stands for. And only God knows best!

For further reading: Refutation of Arthur Jeffery’s “Was Muhammad A Prophet From His Infancy?”

Adapted from M. Mohar Ali’s “Sirat al-Nabi and the Orientalists: With Special Reference to the Writings of William Muir, D.S. Margoliuth and W. Montgomery Watt”, King Fahd Complex, Makkah (1997)

[11] See for instance, besides the Musnad, Bukhari, nos 3826 and 5499; Al-Tabarani, Al-Mu’jam al-Kabir, Vol. I., second impression, n.d., p. 151 and Vol V, pp. 86-87; Al-Bayhaqi, Dala’il al-Nubuwwah etc., Vol. II, Beirut, 1985, pp. 120-128, 144; Al-Dhahab?, Siyar A’lam al-Nubali, Vol. I, Beirut, 1986, pp. 220-222; Al-Haythami, Majma’ al-Zawa’id etc., Vol. IX, Beirut, 1986, pp. 420-421. It has been recorded also by Nasa’i in his section on manaqib.

[12] Bukhari, no. 3826.

[13] See for comments on this report Fath al-Bar?, VII, third impression, pp. 176-178 and IX., pp. 630-631

[14] William Muir, The Life of Mahomet, p. 521

  1. D.S. Margoliuth, Mohammed and the Rise of Islam (3rd ed., 1893) []
  2. M. Mohar Ali, Sirat Al-Nabi and the Orientalists: With Special Reference to the Writings of William Muir, D.S. Margoliuth and W. Montgomery Watt, Vol 1A (1997) []
  3. ibid., pp. 195-203 []
  4. i.e. J. Wellhausen, Reste Arabischen Heidentums, 2nd ed., Berlin, 1897 []
  5. As cited by the missionary from F. E. Peters, Muhammad and the Religion of Islam, p. 127 []
  6. Ibn Hibban, Kitab al-Majrahin Min al-Muhaddithin wa al-Du’afi wa al-Matrikan, Vol. I-III (ed. Muhammad Ibrahim Zayd), Aleppo, 1396, III, 91. []
  7. Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani, Lisan al-Mizan, VI, Beirut, third impression, 1406/1986, p. 196 (no. 700) []
  8. Al-Dhahaba, Mizan al-I’tidal (ed. ‘Ali Muhammad al-Bukhari) VI, Dar al-Ma’rifah, Beirut, pp. 304-305. See also Al-Mughni Fi al-Du’afi’ al-Kabir (ed. Nar al-Din ‘Asir), II, n.d., p. 711, no. 6756. []
  9. Ibn al-Kalbi, Kitab al-Asnam, p. 21 []
  10. Musnad, I, 198-190 (Margoliuth, op. cit., 70) []
Categories
Muhammad

Response to Sam Shamoun’s “Ishmael Is Not The Father of Muhammad”

The missionary Sam Shamoun has claimed that there is a discrepency in the traditions of Ishmael(P) being the ancestor of the Arabs and hence he(P) cannot be the father of Muhammad(P), as per the record of Muslim traditions. We aim to respond to this latest missionary polemic and at the same time we would like to address the abuse of this missionary’s citation from the translation of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah, insha’allah.

Refutation to the Hypothesis

The missionary would like us to believe that the Arabs have no ancestral link to the Prophet Abraham(P) and his son, Ishmael(P). The reality is that scientists today have found a genetic link between the Arabs and the Jews, and hence this verifies the traditions that informs us that the Semitic people share a common ancestor. We read that:

…They found that grouping Jews and Arabs together – both are Semites – is based on genetic and well as historical and linguistic reality.1

This is further confirmed when in the Journal of Babylonian ExilArch, we are told that:

Jews and Arabs are extremely closely related, a new genetic survey has shown.

Wherever in the world they now live, Jewish men carry the same Y chromosome as Palestinians, Syrians and Lebanese.

“Jews and Arabs are all really children of Abraham and all have preserved their Middle Eastern genetic roots over 4,000 years,” said one of the scientists involved. Harry Ostrer, director of the Human Genetics Programme at New York University School of Medicine. The team analysed regions of the Y chromosome in 1,371 men from 29 populations worldwide. The Y chromosome passes largely unchanged down the male line.

The results, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, show that the difference between Jewish and Arab populations is extremely small, considerably smaller than that between North and South African populations, for example. The study confirms that both Arabs and Jews owe their genes to a common ancestor population that predated the Jewish religion.2

Hence it is clear that modern scientific research conducted today has shown that the Arabs and the Jews are the descendants of Abraham(P) and hence we find it ludicrous to see the missionary denying this scientific evidence.

The missionary had constantly relied on a spurious quote from one W. Aliyyuddin Shareef, whereby it is claimed that the pre-Islamic Arabs do not recognise Ishmael(P) as the Father of the Arabs. On the contrary, a study of pre-Islamic poetry and Arab genealogical records provides one with convincing evidence that Ishmael(P) is indeed recognised as the Father of the Arabs.

For instance a pre-Islamic poet `Umaiya b. Abi as-Salt3 wrote a long ode in which he talks about Abraham(P) and his love for his “first-born”, i.e. Ishmael(P). One of his verses is:

    Bakrahu lam yakun laiyasbar unh aw yurahu fi ma’sher al-aqtaal
    (The sacrifice) of his first-born of whose separation he (Abraham) could not bear neither could he see him surrounded in foes.

Here, this pre-Islamic Arab poet clearly points to Ishmael(P) as the first-born of Abraham(P) and to his sacrifice.

Likewise to further strengthen our point, here is what A. J. Wensinck has to say in this regard:

Ishma’il is also considered the ancestor of the North Arabian tribes. In the Arab genealogies, the Arabs are divided into three groups: al-Ba’ida (those who have disappeared), al-`ariba (the indigenous) and al-musta’riba (the arabicised). Ishma’il is considered the progenitor of the last group, whose ancestor is Adnan.4

Further, we also read the following citation from Gesenius:

The missionary has kindly provided us with the genealogy of the Prophet Muhammad(P) in his article. We reproduce it here to facilitate easier elucidation of the matter.

    Prophet Muhammad- Abdullah- Abd Al Muttalib- Hashim- Abd Manaf- Qusaiy- Kilab (Ancestor of the Holy Prophet’s mother)- Murrah- Ka’b. Lu’ayy- Ghalib- Fihr- Malik- Al Nadr- Kinanah- Khuzaiymah- Mudrikah- Ilyas- Mudar- Nizar- Madd- `Adnan- Adad- Zayd- Yaqdud- Al Muqawwam- Al Yasa’- Nabt- Qaidar (Kedar)- Prophet Ismail (Alaihi Salaam)- Prophet Ibrahim (Alaihi Salaam)

Thus, it is clear that even within the Jewish traditions, Kedar, the son of Ishmael(P) and the father of `Adnan is exclusively linked to the Arabs. Indeed, until this very day, Muslims recite the following prayer in worship, as follows:

O Allah! Send Your Mercy on Muhammad and on his family [wives and his offspring], as You sent Your Mercy on Abraham’s family; and send Your Blessings on Muhammad and his family , as You sent Your Blessings on Abraham’s family, in the world, for You are the Most Praise-worthy, the Most Glorious. 6

Needless to mention, we suspect that it is probably the missionary’s inherent jealousy of how Muslims honour the Prophet Abraham(P) and his family which has probably spurred his perjurious claim in the first place!

Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah: Use and Abuse of Evidence

The missionary, as it is frequent throughout his writings, has again appealed to A. Guilaume’s translation of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah, specifically, the outline of the genealogy7. In the near future, we aim to record the number of the misuse and abuse of this work by the missionary.

In the meantime, however, let us address this specific claim of this missionary regarding the genealogical sources.

His allegation is that:

    There are several problems with these genealogies. The first problem is the time span.

He then proceeds to cite from an atheist source, which is an inherent disease in the missionary agenda. The problem with citing this source is that if this system is effectively applied to the missionary’s own Bible, his Bible will also fall under examination. This is because if his source’s point is valid, it deals a much more heavier blow to Christianity than it does to Islam.

The criticism he quoted from the atheist source fits just as easily on the Biblical account as well, so if he agrees with his source, he would have to agree with the absurdity of his own Bible. The dating system is still very much the same.

In other words, if the source that the missionary Shamoun cites is correct, then the genealogies as they stand now are fabrications, so Muslims would have to throw out a couple of hadith from the 2nd century A.H., in favor of revised genealogies that put more people between Abraham(P) and Muhammad(P) and Abraham(P) and Adam(P).

The Christians, however, would have to throw out passages from their “inspired” Bible that deal with genealogies8. So in effect, if Shamoun’s source is correct, we would need to conclude that:

  • the writings of Ibn Ishaq are not infallible, and;
  • the Bible is not infallible.

This is a position that Muslims have already taken, but it is one that the Christian missionaries, most especially the missionary Sam Shamoun, might want to think twice about!

Conclusions

We have shown that the missionary claim is, at best, speculative. Modern scientific research has shown that Jews and Arabs share the same genes, and therefore hail from the same common ancestor.

Moreover, we have seen how the missionary has distorted the Islamic traditions, and we have seen his attempts to appeal to an atheistic source that badly backfires on him. “Truth is clear from error”, as the Qur’an has said, and we are grateful to the missionary for the demonstration of these very words!

And only God knows best.

The Christian missionary made a feeble attempt to reply to our observations above, which in our opinion has glossed over our major points. A short comment on that missionary attempt can be seen in Further Comments On “Ishmael Is Not The Father Of Muhammad” Revisited.

Cite this article as: Bismika Allahuma Team, "Response to Sam Shamoun’s “Ishmael Is Not The Father of Muhammad”," in Bismika Allahuma, September 19, 2005, last accessed September 25, 2022, https://bismikaallahuma.org/muhammad/ishmael-father-muhammad/
  1. ABCNews, Jews, Arabs are brothers,
    genetic study shows
    [Online Document] []
  2. The Times (9 May 2000), Jews and Arabs United by Genes, The Journal of Babylonian ExilArch [Online Document] []
  3. cf. F. Sezgin: “GAS”, Band ii, seite 298-300, Leiden 1975 []
  4. “Isma’il” in Encyclopedia of Islam, 2nd ed., Leiden 1954 []
  5. H. W. F. Gesenius, Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon, p. 724 []
  6. al-Hafiz Imam Ibnu Hajar al-‘Asqalaniy, Kitab Bulughul Maram, hadith no. 336 []
  7. A. Guilaume, The Life of Muhammad: A Translation of Ibn Ishaq’s Sirat Rasul Allah (Oxford University Press, 1978), p. 3-4 []
  8. Various passages in the book of Genesis, Chronicles and Luke that deal with genealogies. []