OBJECTIONS TO SOME CHRISTIAN DOCTRINES
received inspiration, and those that he should commit even until his death. Again, in Surah XLVII.,
Muhammad, 21, he is bidden "Ask pardon for thy sin, and for believers, both men and
women." In Surah XL., Al Mu'min, 57, and Surah IV., An Nisa, 106, the command to Muhammad to
ask for pardon is repeated: cf. also Surah XCIV., Al Inshirah, 1-3. If you accept the Qur'an as a
revelation from God, you must perceive that God is here represented as commanding Muhammad to ask
forgiveness, and as promising to grant it. Does not this amount to a Divine assertion of Muhammad's
88. M. By no means, for our commentators for the most part, as Ar Razi and Zamakshari,
explain this by saying that by "thy offence" is meant "thy people's offence."
C. You must see that the passage above quoted from Surah XLVII., Muhammad, 21, refutes this
argument, for there he is bidden to pray for forgiveness for his own sin first, and then for
those of "believing men and believing women."
89. M. The word
) does not mean sin but only fault: it is explained
by Baizawi (on Surah XL., Al Mu'min, 57) as denoting in that passage some remissness on Muhammad's
part in spreading the true religion. In reference to the prophets it means only the natural weakness
of man, to overcome which he requires the strength and support of God.
AS ALLEGED TO BE TAUGHT IN THE BIBLE
C. With reference to Adam, Abraham, Moses, Jonah, Solomon and others, we have seen that it
means much more than that. In Surah LV., Ar Rahman, 39, the word
) in the plural is
applied to the sins of both jinns and men. In Surah XXVIII., Al Qisas, 78, it is thus said of
idolaters, "But such
mujrimuna] need not be asked about their
The Tafsir i Husaini distinctly and rightly says that this is said of idol-worshippers; and
their sin is the unpardonable one. This text shows that a
] is rightly called a
], so that the latter word does not denote a slight and unavoidable weakness but a sin actually
committed. In Surah LXVII., Al Mulk, II, the souls of the wicked "shall confess their
) in hell-fire. In Surah XII., Yusuf, 29, the crime of Potiphar's wife (lying, slander, lust) is
. In Surah XCI., Ash Shams, 14, the people of Thamud are said to have been destroyed for
, which consisted in accusing their Prophet Salih of imposture, disobeying God's command,
and slaying the Prophet's camel. Hence the Qur'an itself proves
does not mean mere human
weakness, or at worst some trivial offence, for the word is used of "greater"
90. M. Muhammad, like all others who are of the number of
those nearest to God), felt remorse for even slight faults, and to him they seemed serious.