Whom does he talk to?

The Affect Allah’s Intercession has on Divine Unity

Sam Shamoun

There are many passages in the Quran which speak of Allah being the only intercessor and mediator that a person has:

Warn hereby those who fear (because they know) that they will be gathered unto their Lord, for whom there is no protecting ally nor intercessor beside Him, that they may ward off (evil). S. 6:51 Pickthall

Leave alone those who take their religion to be mere play and amusement, and are deceived by the life of this world. But proclaim (to them) this (truth): that every soul delivers itself to ruin by its own acts: it will find for itself no protector or intercessor except God: if it offered every ransom, (or reparation), none will be accepted: such is (the end of) those who deliver themselves to ruin by their own acts: they will have for drink (only) boiling water, and for punishment, one most grievous: for they persisted in rejecting God. S. 6:70 Y. Ali

God is He that created the heavens and the earth, and what between them is, in six days, then seated Himself upon the Throne. Apart from Him, you have no protector neither mediator; will you not remember? S. 32:4 Arberry

The hadith, although contradicting the above statements (in fact, the Quran also contradicts itself on this point, cf. this article), nevertheless admits that Allah does intercede for believers:

… The Prophet added, "Then the prophets and Angels and the believers will intercede, and (last of all) the Almighty (Allah) will say, ‘Now remains My Intercession.’ He will then hold a handful of the Fire from which He will take out some people whose bodies have been burnt, and they will be thrown into a river at the entrance of Paradise, called the water of life… (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 9, Book 93, Number 532s)

The immediate problem with the above is that if Allah is interceding and mediating on behalf of sinners then whom does he intercede and mediate to? After all, intercession and mediation presupposes more than one party, that a person goes before another in order to intercede and mediate on behalf of someone else. As God’s true Word, the Holy Bible, puts it:

What, then, was the purpose of the law? It was added because of transgressions until the Seed to whom the promise referred had come. The law was put into effect through angels by a mediator. A mediator, however, does not represent just one party; but God is one." Galatians 3:19-20

Moreover, since the Holy Bible presents a Triune God, one God eternally existent in three distinct Persons, it makes absolute sense that these specific Divine Persons are able to intercede before one another. For instance, both the Son and the Spirit intercede and mediate before the Father on behalf of true believers:

"In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God's will." Romans 8:26-27

"What, then, shall we say in response to this? If God is for us, who can be against us? He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. Who is he that condemns? Christ Jesus, who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us." Romans 8:31-34

"For there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus, who gave himself as a ransom for all men—the testimony given in its proper time." 1 Timothy 2:5-6

Yet Muslims contend that Allah is absolutely one in his person, that there are no distinct persons within Allah’s essence. This being so, who does Allah intercede and mediate to when he offers intercession and mediation for Muslims? Do the Muslims want to claim that Allah is interceding and mediating to himself, much like he prays to himself?

He it is who sends PRAYERS on you (yusallii alaykum), as do His angels … S. 33:43

Allah and His angels PRAY for the Prophet (yasalluuna alan-Nabiyy): O ye that believe pray for him (salluu `alayhi), and salute him with all respect. S. 33:56

Doesn’t this present Allah as a schizophrenic deity, one who apparently likes to talk to himself? Or, is this just further evidence that the Quran does not present a uni-Personal deity?

The Incoherence of the Qur'an
Articles by Sam Shamoun
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