Praise be to Allah (SWT) who sent his Book that is full of miracles at the same time a guidance to the path of righteousness and a fortifier to our faith. Peace and blessings of Allah (SWT) be on His Prophet (SAW) who went through a lot of difficulties while explaining the messages of the source of Guidance, the Holy Qur’an. Greetings to all brothers who presented the Qur’anic era to mankind and at the same time tried to establish the Islamic civilisation.
Allah (SWT) did not leave human beings in this endless universe alone without guidance. He sent the Book and the Prophets together with miracles that authenticates their prophethood. This continues till the suspicions in the minds of the seekers of the righteousness is gotten rid of, and strong and perfect faith is established. In the same vein, it leaves those who intentionally chose to desert the path of righteousness without any excuse, should they be asked to account for their wrong actions in the day of the judgement. This religion and the Book are sent to all mankind, for that matter this Book must have some evidences that can be understood by everyone. While some of the evidences are very clear and can be understood by everyone, the others can only be understood by those with in-depth knowledge about Islam or through contemplation.
Allah’s (SWT) Book was not written by humans and cannot be written by humans as well and Allah (SWT) challenged the whole world to prove the contrary. Allah (SWT) also stated in His book that “Surely, if mankind and jinns were to get together to produce the like of this Qur’an, they will never be able to produce the like of it, howsoever they might help one another.”1 In the Hud surah, Qur’an said to all those who failed to reply to the challenge of producing a similitude to Qur’an that: “Do they say: ‘He has invented this Book himself?’ Say: ‘If that is so, bring ten surahs the like of it of your composition, and call upon all (the deities) you can other than Allah to your help. Do so if you are truthful.’2
And to those who could not provide the ten surahs above, Allah again challenges them in Yunus and Baqarah Surahs, to produce just one verse of the Qur’an with the following verse: “Do they say that the Messenger has himself composed the Qur’an? Say: ‘In that case bring forth just one surah like it and call on all whom you can, except Allah, to help you if you are truthful.”3 But if you do not do this, and you can never do this, then fear the Fire which has been prepared for the disbelievers and which shall have men and stones for fuel.”4
Up to now, the inability of anyone to even attempt to write a single verse similar to the verses of the Qur’an is an evidence that Qur’an is the word of Allah (SWT). Qur’an would have been challenged if anyone had succeeded in writing a single verse similar to the verses of the Qur’an. The claims of the Qur’an would have collapsed completely had anyone succeeded in writing just a single verse. Furthermore, the cause of the Qur’an would have also been gone and Muslims all over the world would not have found it necessary to fight for the cause of the Qur’an. Nobody would have tried to live a life in the light of Qur’an. In that case, enemies of Islam would not have found it necessary to wage a war on Muslims. As Câhiz rightly stated “they resorted to crusade with swords simply because they couldn’t go against the Qur’an with words. Not even a single verse they were able to put forward”. The claims of the Qur’an were very clear, they would not have been compelled to wage crusades for centuries had they been able to produce a verse similar to that found in the Holy Qur’an. They preferred risking their lives by waging crusades instead of challenging the Qur’an. They dared not to write even a single verse of the Qur’an. They knew that they could not measure up to the Qur’an’s highest level of literature, morality and civilisation. They also could not match up to the miracles in the Qur’an, some of which would be explained as you read down.
Some scholars had divided the miracles of the Qur’an into three parts namely:
· The news it gave about the past
· The news it gives about the future
· Eternal miracles,
However, it is not possible to name and pinpoint each and every miracle of the Holy Qur’an because in subsequent centuries, new miracles were being discovered and Allah (SWT) grants the virtue and honour of these discoveries to different scholars.
1-For instance, an Egyptian Scholars by name Muhammed Ebu Zehra discovered that the law system of Holy Qur’an is a miracle. The laws of Qur’an enforce justice, decrease crimes and skirmishes, help to discipline the individual and provides a perfect balance between the rules. Injustices, conflicts and imbalances found in the man-made law systems, do not exist in the laws of Allah (SWT) and each law has a wisdom in it. When the judgement aspect of Qur’an is further examined it can be clearly seen that it originates from the creator of mankind. This is because it suits the human nature and addresses deep down the inner qualities of human beings. It’s laws enforce peace and safety in the society, keeps individuals away from committing crimes and bans them from mischief. The Sender of these laws obviously knows humans very well because he created them. The holy Qur’an supported this assertion with the verse “Does He Who created not know what he created?”5
Among other things, Islamic laws addresses the issues of trading, marriage and divorce, inheritance, punishments for crimes, international affairs between governments, war and peace in a very non- ambiguous manner. It also provides the fundamentals of every law. It points out the difference between judgements that may look similar. It does not make room for confusion in the future. It also teaches the concepts and logic behind various laws to enable and empower the law scholars to improvise for special cases when necessary.
Just like how the laws of Qur’an is miraculous, it’s methods of movement and strategies, methods of education are also miraculous. We will temporarily leave this topic now in and turn our attention to Qur’an’s miraculous literature, clarity and eloquence that brings even the disbelievers to their knees.
2-In an attempt to persuade Prophet Muhammad (SAW) to give up the propagation of Islam and the teachings of the Holy Qur’an, Utbe Bin Rabia proposed the following to the prophet: making him the richest person among the Quraysh tribe, getting him married to the most beautiful lady or making him the king of the Quraysh tribe. In an answer to these proposals, Prophet Muhammad (SAW) started reading the first few verses of the Fussilat surah to Utbe. This blew Utbe off his feet entirely. Utbe then said, “That’s enough please, for the sake of the blood relationship between us, stop reading,” and he turned around to go back to his friends. Upon seeing Utbe from afar his friends said, “By Allah, Utbe is coming back with a mood that is very different from the mood with which he left us”. When they asked him what happened, he said “By Allah, throughout my life I had never heard what I heard a while ago”. It is neither a poem nor an oracle. Oh, the people of Quraysh, leave this man alone, let him remain in his present predicament. By Allah, the words I heard from him will manifest itself soon. If the Arabs come and mitigate him, you will be free from what he is bringing. If he overpowers the Arabs, his glory is also yours, his kingdom is also yours and you will be the most prosperous among humanity”. His friends responded by saying, “By Allah, he has bewitched you with his tongue (with the verses he read from the Qur’an)”. “This is my view about him” Utbe added.
In the same manner, after coming under the influence of the verses of the Qur’an read out by Prophet Muhammad (SAW), Velid b. Mugire declined to say bad things about prophet Muhammad (SAW) when asked to do so. He said “What could I possibly say about him? I swear there isn’t anyone among us who knows and understands poems better than I do. No one knows proses or listens to fortune tellers more than I do. I can also swear that what he is saying doesn’t resemble any of those. In his words there is sweetness and underlying beauty. From the top it is fruitful but deeper down it’s like a rainstorm coming down. There is no doubt that at the end, his words will come on top and nothing will be able to trample it down, but it will crush what’s beneath”. After these words, he added that it was an effective spell on him, just to save his face among his people.6
3- Qur’an also addresses people from all standards, because it wasn’t sent to people of higher intellectual level only. The basic messages that are understood by even a lay man can be interpreted by a scholar to give several different results. Everyone benefits from it in his own level. The same verses satisfy both the scholars and the lay people alike.
As much as The Qur’an is based on logic and intellect, emotions and senses are not left out. Because mankind is naturally multi-faceted. While explaining a religious belief or an action, Qur’an also reaches out to the emotions and at times to the point of making the reader/listener shed tears. It’s not a kind of ideology that addresses only the mind and neglects the emotions. The sender of the Qur’an is at the same time the creator of the emotions.
4- The incidents of the past narrated in the Holy Qur’an are also miraculous because the archaeological researches and discoveries also further proved the accuracy of Holy Qur’an. Qur’an mentions the story of Noah (AS) and his ark which took place thousands of years ago and science authenticates it. Scientific research proved that tens of thousands of years ago the entire World was under water, and that the water levels were beyond the apex of the mountains.
Qur’an also tell us that some generations have been punished and revelations of the Qur’an shows the locations where these generations once lived. The researches and discoveries done at those locations uncovers traces of those generations together with the remnants of their wreckages as evidence of the punishment they underwent.
5-After Pharaoh was drowned in the red sea together with his army, Qur’an said, “So today We will save you in body that you may be to those who succeed you a sign. And indeed, many among the people, of Our signs, are heedless”.7 The body of a naked male in prostration was discovered by archaeologists at Jabalain area in the red sea in 1881. The body had not decayed even though there were no traces of chemicals usually used in embalming on it. Tests conducted on this body with the latest carbon 14 technology reveals that, this body was three thousand years old. This coincides with the era of Prophet Moses (AS). The location also coincides with the area where Pharaoh was believed to have been drowned together with his army (all the commentaries of the Qur’an mentions that Pharaoh was drowned in the red sea). In the commentary of the Qur’an written by Zemahshari who lived nine centuries ago, he said “We shall throw your body at the side of the sea. Your dead body will be complete without any missing part and will not decompose. It will be naked, and we will protect it to serve as a warning to the generations that will come after you”.8 Qur’an’s declaration that Pharaoh’s body will be intact indicates that the body would not be embalmed. Embalmed bodies are not intact since their internal organs are missing. Qur’ans ability to give information about the past as well as the information about the future is also miracle. The declaration of the Qur’an that said, “We will also protect your body intact to serve as a warning to the generations that will come after you” implied that future generations will find this body in non-decomposed manner, and that is exactly what happened. This body can now be found at the British museum in London. Is it possible for Prophet Muhammad (SAW) who doesn’t even know how to read or write know this detail that is not known by even the seasoned historians? This is an evidence that Qur’an is the word of Allah.
To be continued in the next issue.
1 Al-Isra; 88
2 Hud; 13
3 Yunus; 38
4 Baqarah; 23-24
5 Al Mulk; 14
6 Ibni Jarir Taberi
7 Yunus; 92
8 Kashaf Commentary; Vol. 2