Sunday, July 19, 2009

Muhammad in the Bible

This is a great interest of mine for various reasons.... I have a personal interest in inter-faith dialogue and being in a Christian country, the Bible takes a lot of my attention.

In Isaiah 29 we read a prophecy:

11And the vision of all is become unto you as the words of a book that is sealed, which men deliver to one that is learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I cannot; for it is sealed: 12And the book is delivered to him that is not learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I am not learned.

Jesus says in John 16 that he is not revealing everything to his followers:

12I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.

This aligns with Isaiah 29:11 for a man who is learned to not reveal certain information. Going forward, Isaiah 29:12 is a prophecy of future events as well, but we won't find the fulfillment of this prophecy in the Bible. Instead we find this in the sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).

3. 'A'isha, Umm al-Mu'minin, may Allah be pleased with her, said, "The beginning of the revelation to the Messenger of Allah, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, took the form of the true dream. Whenever he had this kind of dream, it was clear like the break of day [and was true]. Then he was made to love retreat and used to go into retreat in the cave of Hira' where he would devote himself to the worship of Allah alone, continuing in this worship for a number of nights until he felt inclined to return to his family. He would take provision for his stay. Then he would return to Khadija to restock with provision to do the same again. This lasted until the Truth came to him while he was in the cave of Hira'.

The angel came to him and said, 'Read!' He said, 'I cannot read.'"

The Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, said, "He seized me and squeezed me until all the strength went out of me and then released me and said, 'Read !' I said, 'I cannot read.' Then he seized me and squeezed me a second time until all the strength when out of me and then released me. Then he seized me and squeezed me a third time and then released me, and then he said, 'Recite: In the Name of your Lord who created, created man from a blood clot. Recite: And your Lord is the Most Generous.'"
-Sahih Bukhari Book 1, Chapter 1

It would be hard to make this more clear. The Angel Jibril (as) told the Prophet Muhammmad (pbuh) to read and responded that he could not. While it is not necessary to know Biblical references in order to confirm our faith, it solidifies the foundation for our conversations with people of other faiths. MashaAllah wa alhamdulilah.

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