Quran Contradiction

A Messenger From Among the Beasts?

Sam Shamoun

The Quran expressly proclaims that all of Allah’s messengers and prophets were humans:

And We sent not before you (as Messengers) ANY BUT MEN, whom We inspired from among the people of townships. Have they not travelled through the earth and seen what was the end of those who were before them? And verily, the home of the Hereafter is the best for those who fear Allah and obey Him (by abstaining from sins and evil deeds, and by performing righteous good deeds). Do you not then understand? S. 12:109

And We sent not before you (O Muhammad SAW) BUT MEN to whom We inspired, so ask the people of the Reminder [Scriptures - the Taurat (Torah), the Injeel (Gospel)] if you do not know. And We did not create them (the Messengers, with) bodies that ate not food, nor were they immortals, S. 21:7-8

And We never sent before you (O Muhammad SAW) any of the Messengers but verily, they ate food and walked in the markets. And We have made some of you as a trial for others: will you have patience? And your Lord is Ever All-Seer (of everything). And those who expect not for a Meeting with Us (i.e. those who deny the Day of Resurrection and the life of the Hereafter), say: "Why are not the angels sent down to us, or why do we not see our Lord?" Indeed they think too highly of themselves, and are scornful with great pride. S. 25:20-21

The Quran provides the reason why Allah sent only men:

And nothing prevented men from believing when the guidance came to them, except that they said: "Has Allah sent a man as (His) Messenger?" Say: "If there were on the earth, angels walking about in peace and security, We should certainly have sent down for them from the heaven an angel as a Messenger." S. 17:94-95

The two Jalals had this to say of Q. 17:95:

Say, to them, 'Had there been in the earth, instead of humans, angels, walking [and living] secure, We would have sent down to them from the heaven an angel as Messenger', for when a messenger is sent to a people he is [always] of their kind, so that they are able to speak to him and understand from him [his message]. (Tafsir al-Jalalayn; source; bold and underline emphasis ours)

The following commentary attributed to Ibn Abbas stated regarding this same text that:

(Say) O Muhammad, to the people of Mecca: (If there were in the earth angels walking secure, We had sent down for them from heaven an angel as messenger) for we send angel messengers only to angels and human messengers to humans. (Tanwr al-Miqbs min Tafsr Ibn ‘Abbs; source; bold and underline emphasis ours)

Hence, the Quranic logic goes something like this: Allah sends humans as his messengers because he is communicating his divine message to human beings. If Allah were revealing the Quran to some other creatures then Allah would raise a messenger from their species so as to be able to communicate to them on their level. Thus, if Allah were speaking to angels he would send an angel, if he were speaking to beasts he would raise up a beast etc.

The Quran also says that Muhammad is the last prophet:

Muhammad (SAW) is not the father of any man among you, but he is the Messenger of Allah and the last (end) of the Prophets. And Allah is Ever All Aware of everything. S. 33:40

Here is a summary of the points raised by the foregoing texts:

Yet Allah fails to maintain his own stated policy since the Quran claims that he will send forth a beast, an animal, to speak to humanity!

And when the Word (of torment) is fulfilled against them, We shall bring out from the earth a beast to them, which will speak to them because mankind believed not with certainty in Our Ayt (Verses of the Qur'n and Prophet Muhammad SAW). S. 27:82

Here is what the two Jalals stated:

And when the word [of judgement] falls upon them, [when] they deserve that chastisement befalls them as well as all [other] disbelievers, We shall bring forth for them a beast from the earth which shall speak to them [saying], that is, which shall speak IN ARABIC to those who are alive at the time when it appears, among its other statements, it will say to them on Our behalf: 'Indeed mankind (read tukallimuhum inna'l-nasa; a variant has tukallimuhum bi-anna'l-nasa, 'to tell them that mankind') had no faith in Our signs', in other words, they did not believe in the Qur'an and what it comprises [of the mention] of resurrection, reckoning and requital. With its [the beast's] appearance the enjoining of decency and forbidding of indecency will cease, and thereafter no disbeliever will believe - just as God revealed to Noah [when He said to him]: None of your people will believe except he who has already believed [Q. 11:36]. (Tafsir al-Jalalayn; source; bold and capital emphasis ours)

By sending forth a beast to warn human beings Allah has provided an argument for the unbelievers against Muhammad. After all, the Quran records the unbelievers inquiring as to why didn’t Allah send an angel to communicate with them in order to convince them of Muhammad’s apostleship, with the response being that Allah would have done so if they were angels. Yet Allah has no problem sending an animal to communicate to human beings, so why should there be a problem with sending an angel to speak to them? If one species can communicate to a different kind of species then why can’t angels speak to human beings, especially when the Quran says that angels have spoken with humans before?

They followed what the Shayatin (devils) gave out (falsely of the magic) in the lifetime of Sulaiman (Solomon). Sulaiman did not disbelieve, but the Shayatin (devils) disbelieved, teaching men magic and such things that came down at Babylon to the two angels, Harut and Marut, but neither of these two (angels) taught anyone (such things) till they had said, "We are only for trial, so disbelieve not (by learning this magic from us)." And from these (angels) people learn that by which they cause separation between man and his wife, but they could not thus harm anyone except by Allah's Leave. And they learn that which harms them and profits them not. And indeed they knew that the buyers of it (magic) would have no share in the Hereafter. And how bad indeed was that for which they sold their ownselves, if they but knew. S. 2:102

Then the angels called him, while he was standing in prayer in Al-Mihrab (a praying place or a private room), (saying): "Allah gives you glad tidings of Yahya (John), confirming (believing in) the Word from Allah [i.e. the creation of 'Iesa (Jesus), the Word from Allah ("Be!" - and he was!)], noble, keeping away from sexual relations with women, a Prophet, from among the righteous." … And (remember) when the angels said: "O Maryam (Mary)! Verily, Allah has chosen you, purified you (from polytheism and disbelief), and chosen you above the women of the 'Alamin (mankind and jinns) (of her lifetime)."… (Remember) when the angels said: "O Maryam (Mary)! Verily, Allah gives you the glad tidings of a Word ["Be!" - and he was! i.e. 'Iesa (Jesus) the son of Maryam (Mary)] from Him, his name will be the Messiah 'Iesa (Jesus), the son of Maryam (Mary), held in honour in this world and in the Hereafter, and will be one of those who are near to Allah." S. 3:39, 42, 45

Moreover, if a beast will come forth to warn human beings about their disbelief then this essentially rules out Muhammad as the last prophet and messenger. After all, this beast is acting as Allah’s messenger, his agent of revelation to mankind.

Finally, Muhammad is also believed to be a messenger to the jinn and supposedly converted a group of them who had heard his message (cf. Q. 46:29-32; 72:1-14). Thus, Muhammad himself violated this policy of human messengers being sent only to humans!

All citations taken from the Hilali-Khan version of the Quran.

Further Reading


Qur'an Contradictions
Articles by Sam Shamoun
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