Responses to Islamic Awareness

Hadīth From Sunan ad-Dārimi Concerning Prophet Moses(P) Following Prophet Muhammad(P) If The Former Were Alive Today

Presumably, Ghoniem's article is trying to establish the point that since Moses' teachings have been superseded by the teachings of Muhammad, this serves to prove that the Torah of Moses has been abrogated as well. The only problem is that to abrogate previous scriptures does not imply that the text of the Torah is corrupt. Furthermore, if both the Quran and hadith affirm the validity of the Torah as the uncorrupt, well preserved word of God then it becomes quite irrelevant whether Muhammad believed his teachings abrogated Moses' since the latter's entire religious foundation is destroyed.

This is due to the fact that Muhammad contradicts the very message of the Holy Bible. This implies that either God was confused and could not make up his mind (God forbid!) since he revealed scriptures that were totally contradictory, or Muhammad was mistaken since he believed in the integrity of the Scriptures but contradicted the heart of its teaching, namely the plan of redemption and the personal nature of the Messiah.

Let us proceed, then, and examine Ghoniem's points.

The following is the hadīth from Sunan ad-Dārimi.

Muhammad Ibn al-Alā' told us that Ibn Numayr reported from Mujālid from Ibn Aamir from Jaabir that Umar Ibn al-Khattāb brought a copy of the Torah to the Prophet(P) and said: "O Apostle of God, this is a copy of the Torah." But [the Prophet] kept silent. Then Umar started reading and the face of the Prophet kept changing. So, Abu Bakr interrupted him violently: "Don't you see the face of the Prophet(P)?" Umar looked at the Prophet's face and said "May God preserve me from His anger and from the anger of his Apostle(P), we accepted God as Lord and Islām as religion and Muhammad as prophet." Then the Prophet(P) said: "By the One Who owns Muhammad's soul, if Moses(P) appeared to you and you followed him and left me, you would go astray from the right path and if he were alive and reached [the time of] my prophethood he would have followed me. "


This states clearly the the religion as well as the scripture give to Moses(P) is abrogated after the advent of Qur'ān. The clearly shows Muslim's position vis-a-vis of the previous scripures, i.e., the Torah, Zabur or Injīl, and that the Muslims do not have to follow it. It would be worthwhile to add that this refutes some of the Christian missionary claims that the Qur'ān points to the "superiority" of the Bible. If that was the case then why would Prophet Moses(P) need to abandon the revelation given to him by God for the Qur'ān?

As we have indicated, abrogation of previous scriptures does not imply that the biblical text is corrupt. The issue is not abrogation but whether the Quran teaches that the text of the Holy Bible has suffered corruption and is not in its original, pristine form. This is essential since if the Quran affirms that the Holy Bible is uncorrupt then Islam crumbles. Since Muhammad claimed that the same God who gave Moses and Jesus inspired scriptures is the same God who revealed the Quran we would expect to find some consistency in the revelation. We would expect to find the Quran agreeing with the Holy Bible on issues such as the nature of God, the person of Messiah, the plan of salvation, the nature of man etc.

If they disagree, then the Quran is in error. This is based on the fact that the Quran appeals to the Holy Bible as the uncorrupt word of God, and claims to have been authored by the very same God. Hence, the lesser (the Quran) appeals to the greater (the Holy Bible), the newer appeals to the already established and is therefore subject to that which came before it.

Let us therefore examine the early Islamic literature in order to discover Muhammad's view of previous scriptures, whether they were corrupt or not.

Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 38 (Kitab al Hudud, ie. Prescribed Punishments), Number 4434 states:

Narrated Abdullah Ibn Umar:

A group of Jews came and invited the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) to Quff. So he visited them in their school. They said: AbulQasim, one of our men has committed fornication with a woman; so pronounce judgment upon them. They placed a cushion for the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) who sat on it and said:

Bring the Torah. It was then brought. He then withdrew the cushion from beneath him and placed the Torah on it saying: I believed in thee and in Him Who revealed thee. He then said: Bring me one who is learned among you. Then a young man was brought. The transmitter then mentioned the rest of the tradition of stoning similar to the one transmitted by Malik from Nafi' (No. 4431)."

Muhammad shows enough respect for the Torah available at his time that he places it on a cushion in order to prevent it from touching the floor. This presumes that the Torah in his hands was the pure word of God, otherwise he would have been giving honor to a corrupted text which others were deceptively passing on as the Torah of Moses.

Further support for the Torah's authenticity is taken from Ibn Ishaq's Sira Rasulullah:

"Rafi b. Haritha and Sallam b. Mishkam and Malik b. al-Sayf and Rafi b. Huraymila came to him and said: "Do you not allege that you follow the religion of Abraham AND BEIEVE IN THE TORAH WHICH WE HAVE AND TESTIFY THAT IT IS THE TRUTH FROM GOD?" He replied, "CERTAINLY, but you have sinned and broken the covenant contained therein and concealed what you were ordered to make plain to man, and I disassociate myself from your sin." They said, "We hold by what we have. We live according to the guidance and the truth and we do not believe in you and we will not follow you." So God sent down concerning them: "Say O Scripture folk, you have no standing until you observe the Torah and the Gospel and what has been sent down to you from your Lord. What has been sent down to thee from thy Lord will assuredly increase many of them in error and unbelief. But be not sad because of the unbelieving people." (Alfred Guillaume, The Life of Muhammad, p. 268)

Here was a great opportunity for Muhammad to mention the corruption of the Holy Bible, especially the Torah available at his time, yet instead he chose to affirm its authority. In fact, his affirmation of the authority of the biblical text led the two gentlemen to remark that they would follow the guidance of their scriptures as opposed to following him.

It is clear that Islam is the final religion and whoever does not accept Islam would be a loser on the last Day.

What is clear is that the Quran is not the Word of God and Muhammad was not his prophet. This is due to the fact that Muhammad affirms the purity and authority of the Holy Bible and yet contradicts its core teachings. Muhammad seemingly thought that he was following the tradition of the prophets and was therefore perfecting the message they had proclaimed. Yet, in reality Muhammad contradicted the prophetic message that came before him without seemingly realizing it. Hence, who ever believes that Moses would follow a man that contradicted his core beliefs on such issues as the nature of God shall be the loser on the last Day:

"But do not think I will accuse you before the Father. Your accuser is Moses, on whom your hopes are set. If you believed Moses, you would believe me, for he wrote about me. But since you do not believe what he wrote how are you going to believe what I say?" John 5:45-46

Sam Shamoun

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