Thursday 18 July 2019

Understanding Islam: Who is Allah? Is He the same God as that of Jews and Christians?

From today on, we at Islam:My Ultimate Decision begin a new series of post so that people understand Islam better than what has been told or what non Muslims have been made to believe. As already spelt out in the overview of this series, this will be in the form of most frequently asked questions by Non Muslims and provide them as authentic a reply as possible based on the similar questions asked to some of the prominent Muslim scholars of present times.

And the first most frequently asked questions is: Who is Allah? Is He the same God as that of Jews and Christians?   

Misconception exist among non Muslims, specially the Christians that Allah of Muslims is something different from God of Christians and Jews and all other faiths. The simple logic behind this misconception is that the God, the Creator of the entire universe and the heavens above is called "Allah" in Arabic. since the Holy Qur'an was raveled in Arabic, it used word Allah for the God. Had Qur'an been revealed in any other language, God would been called whatever was equivalent in that language for the only One God Who is the master of the universe.

Like in Portuguese, God is called Deus, Dios in Spanish, Brahman in Hinduism, in the Arabic translations of Bible, God is translated as Allah. It must therefore be understood that Allah” is a word in the Arabic language equivalent to the English word “God” with a capital “G”.  Thus the word “Allah” cannot be made plural, a fact which goes hand-in-hand with the Islamic concept of God.

It must also be noted that that the Aramaic word “El”, which is the word for God in the language that Jesus spoke, is certainly more similar in sound to the word “Allah” than the English word “God.”  This also holds true for the various Hebrew words for God, which are “El” and “Elah”, and the plural or glorified form “Elohim.”  The reason for these similarities is that Aramaic, Hebrew and Arabic are all Semitic languages with common origins.  It should also be noted that in translating the Bible into English, the Hebrew word “El” is translated variously as “God”, “god” and “angel”!  This imprecise language allows different translators, based on their preconceived notions, to translate the word to fit their own views.  The Arabic word “Allah” presents no such difficulty or ambiguity, since it is only used for Almighty God alone.  Additionally, in English, the only difference between “god”, meaning a false god, and “God”, meaning the One True God, is the capital “G”.  Due to the above mentioned facts, a more accurate translation of the word “Allah” into English might be “The One -and-Only God” or “The One True God.”

Now coming over the concept of the Supreme Being, the Only Creator and Master of the Universe has been no one except but God or Allah. Therefore like all other Divine religions, Muslims worship the God of Noah, Abraham, Moses, David and Jesus ( peace be upon them all). 

Herein under is the testimony of there being Only One Lord as has been referred to in Deuteronomy 5:1-9 New International Version (NIV), The Ten Commandments:
5   Moses  summoned  all Israel and said: "Hear, Israel, the decrees and laws:  I. declare in your hearing today. Learn them and be sure to follow them. 2 The Lord our God made a covenant with us at Horeb. 3 It was not with our ancestors[a] that the Lord made this covenant, but with us, with all of us who are alive here today. 4 The Lord spoke to you face to face out of the fire on the mountain. 5 (At that time I stood between the Lord and you to declare to you the word of the Lord, because you were afraid of the fire and did not go up the mountain.)"
And he said:
6 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.7 “You shall have no other gods before[b] me8 “You shall not make for yourself an image in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. 9 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the parents to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,
In the Holy Qur'an, Chapter 112 Surah Al Ikhlas, the same concept is repeated when Allah addresses His Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and tells him to pronounce and tell others who Allah is:
قُلۡ هُوَ اللّٰهُ اَحَدٌ​ ۚ‏ Say: “He is Allah, the One and Unique;اَللّٰهُ الصَّمَدُ​ ۚ‏ Allah, Who is in need of none and of Whom all are in need;لَمۡ يَلِدۡ   ۙ وَلَمۡ يُوۡلَدۡ ۙ‏ He neither begot any nor was He begotten,وَلَمۡ يَكُنۡ لَّهٗ كُفُوًا اَحَدٌand none is comparable to Him.”‏ 
The opening verse clearly ratifies the verses 6-7 of the New Testament as quoted above. And it is very clear there exists a concept of One true Lord, the God, in both the Bible and the Qur'an. But when it comes to practice, differences and misconceptions arise.

However, when Muslims say Allah, they mean One True God as has been the belief of all before Christianity. Muslims - like Jews - reject the Christian beliefs of the Trinity and the Divine Incarnation.  This, however, does not mean that each of these three religions worships a different God, because there is only One True God.  Judaism, Christianity and Islam all claim to be “Abrahamic Faiths”, and all of them are also classified as “monotheistic.”  However, Islam teaches that other religions have, in one way or another, distorted and nullified a pure and proper belief in Almighty God by neglecting His true teachings and mixing them with man-made ideas.

The Christianity has added the Son and the Holy Ghost at the same par as God, they call father, the Trinity concept. So when Muslims say Allah, they do not mean God in Three. Allah is the same Creator who had Jesus been born from virgin Mariam (Mary) as one of His countless miracles. It is apathy that instead of celebrating a miracle, Christians have started calling Allah as Father.

Herein under are references that bring in the concept of Trinity, which negates the earlier reference given above from the New Testament:
Jesus was the only person to be born of a mortal mother, Mary, and an immortal father, God the Father. That is why Jesus is called the Only Begotten Son of God.[Reference]
Do you remember what Jesus’ Father did one day when Jesus was with three of his followers?— Yes, God spoke all the way from heaven to tell them: “This is my Son, the beloved, whom I have approved.”—Matthew 17:5.
We Muslims firmly believe that Prophet Eesa (Jesus, may peace be upon him) was one of the true messengers of Allah who was endowed with the holy scripture of Injeel (The Bible). But we also strongly believe in the third verse of the Surah Al Ikhlas quoted above that He (Allah) neither begot any nor was He begotten, which clearly means that neither He (Allah) has an offspring nor is He the offspring of another. Therefore Muslims do not subscribe to the concept of Trinity nor take Prophet Eesa as son of God, for Jesus is like all other messengers and prophets of Allah, though born in miraculous circumstances.

And this above referred surah is not the only one in which Allah strictly says of Himself being the Only One with no partners, associates or helpers, what to talk of a son, to run the affairs of the universe and heavens:
  • Allah is only One Deity: He is far too exalted that He should have a son: whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth belongs to Him. (Surah An-Nisa, Ayat 171).
  • Note it well: they, in fact, invent a falsehood when they say, Allah has children. They are utter liars. (Surah As-Saaffat, Ayats 151-152).
  • They have invented a blood-relationship between Allah and the angels, whereas the angels know well that these people will be brought up (as culprits). (Surah As-Saaffat, Ayat 158).
  • These people have made some of His servants to be part of Him. The fact is that man is manifestly ungrateful. (Surah Az-Zukhruf, Ayat l5).
There can be numerous arguments which can be quoted from the Holy Quran, but to cut the discussion short, it should be noted that the Arabic word “Allah” contains a deep religious message due to its root meaning and origin.  This is because it stems from the Arabic verb ta’allaha (or alaha), which means “to be worshiped.”  Thus in Arabic, the word “Allah” means “The One who deserves all worship.”  This, in a nutshell, is the Pure Monotheistic message of Islam. And as per chapter 112 quoted above, The One True God or Allah is the One who has all these four unique attributes.

More and more Christians are reverting to Islam, many of whom had started reading the Quran only to prove it false. But truth always prevails. Many revers, whose experiences I have already shared in my blog, have confided that after reading and understanding Quran they now now understand that Prophet Jesus (peace be upn him) was not son of God, but a revered and blessed messenger and prophet of Allah, like all before him and Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) who followed him as the last of the prophets sent by Allah.

Now listen to one of the most prominent Muslim scholars of present times, Dr Zakir A Naik defining Allah and bringing out the truth from the all the Divine and man written scriptures about Allah which is One and Only One, the Creator of the Heavens and the Universe. Listen to him carefully, no matter which religion you belong to and then ponder over the misconceptions that  harbour in the minds of many non Muslims around the world about Allah:
My readers may read a post: 90 Verses That Say: Jesus is Not God Nor the Literal Son of God, for further clarification on the concept of Prophet Eesa being son of God.

May Allah show us the right path so that we do not go astray due to what man has interpreted verses of religious scriptures to suit their own religions and faith. Aameen.

Photo | References: | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 |
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