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See: Project Rebuttal: What the West needs to know about Islam

Refuting the gross distortion and misrepresentation of the Quran, the Prophet Muhammad and Islam, made by the critics of Islam

Read: Background to the Project

List of all Issues | Summary 1 | Summary 2 | Summary 3‎ — completed, 28th June 2013


August 19th, 2011

Issue 10

Issue 10 [@11:55]: Slide show of quote from Quran: The Noble Quran, Translated with parenthetical note by Dr. Muhammad Taqi-ud-Din Al-Hilali and Dr. Muhammad Mushin Khan – Surah 98:6. Verily, those who disbelieve (in the religion of Islam, the Quran and Prophet Muhammad) from among the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) and Al-Mushrikoon [voice – other disbelievers] will abide in the Fire of Hell. They are the worst of creatures.

Rebuttal 10: Quotation of this single verse as a standalone is a classical example of out-of-context use of verses of Quran with the intention to inculcate fear and hate in the minds of Jews and Christians against Muslims, while insinuating that Hindus, Buddhists etc. are without a Book. The whole chapter of this verse is only eight verses long, yet the producers of the movie chose to quote one sentence, which proves their venomous and sly tactics. These cheap shots are a leaf out of the Nazi propaganda book – Julius Streicher, editor of the infamous Nazi broadsheet Der Stürmer in Weimar-era Germany. To arouse anti-semitic sentiments among the weekly’s working class Christian readership, Streicher regularly published truncated quotations from Talmudic texts that, in their shortened form, appear to advocate greed, slavery, and ritualistic murder [Wikipedia].

A Muslim will read 98:6 or any other verse differently by taking into account its full context, else the message of the Book might be lost in a dogma which negates the very purpose of the Message of the Quran. In general, a verse can be contextualized by other verses in its close proximity or far removed in location and time of revelation i.e.

41:3. (It is) a Book, the verses of which are detailed and clear in exposition. It is beautifully inter linked, (and it is in a language that) makes the meanings eloquently clear. It is very useful for a people who have knowledge.

Hence, the key word is that the verses are inter linked throughout the Quran. Furthermore, there are no contradictions within Quran:

4:82. Why do they not ponder over the Qur’ân? Had it been from anyone other than Allâh, they would surely have found a good deal of inconsistency therein.

Hence, the next key word is lack of inconsistency in Quran.

The full context of a verse can be realized by its inter-linkage with other verses and consistency between the verses. In an abstract, the structure of Quran is linear, yet in a lattice. As a side note, if a reader, for whatever reason, including lack of knowledge, is not able to understand the meaning of a verse or reconcile verses across the Quran, it does not mean that one verse to is be ignored in favor of another. There is no picking or choosing, either take it all or reject it all. That’s why there is no abrogation in Quran, not even of an iota. Period.

Besides Muhammad, Allah is also a target of ridicule by the movie. Lets take a pause and address it. As to who this “Allah” is, Quran states:

98:1. …the Lord of mankind,
98:2. `The Sovereign, the Controller of all affairs of mankind,
98:3. `The God of mankind,

Am I reading it correctly above (or elsewhere) where there is no mention of God of Muslims, or is it so that Allah is God for all mankind and not of Muslims alone? In these declarations non-Muslims are empowered at par with Muslims, and Muslims do not have the home court advantage in their share of God. Next time when Robert Spencer or others hear the word “Allah,” rest assured it is their God as well, though they might never get it. Besides removing any trappings of religion or race around the term “God,” Quran states:

112:1. Say, `(The fact is) He is Allâh, the One and Alone in His Being.
112:2. `Allâh is that Supreme Being Who is the Independent and Besought of all and Unique in all His attributes.
112:3. `He begets none and is begotten by no one.
112:4. `And there is none His equal.’

The verses above reflect the pristine monotheist aspect of God. Can any follower of any monotheistic creed have a problem with above verses? Can anyone think of more eloquent statement of monotheism? Assuredly not.

With the above rules of inter-linkage and consistency of verses with the concept of God in Islam, lets revisit the chapter from which the above verse under discussion is quoted and see if the message is the same (-sinister) as the movie is trying to portray or different and righteous?

In this case study we will use translation of Quran by Nooruddin whose use of inline parenthetical explanation makes it easy for the reader, else there are many other translations to chose from, with that of Muhammad Ali – Zahid Aziz as foremost for its detailed explanations in the footnotes. The chapter Bayyinah i.e. Manifest Proof is laid out below:

98:1. Those who disbelieve from among the people of the Scripture and (from among) those who associate gods with God, would not be rid of their bigotry and rejection of Faith until there should come to them the manifest proof –

It is a historical fact that at the time of revelation of the verse in Issue 10 at hand, the world was going through its darkest age despite Jews and Christians possessing the “Book” and the polytheists possessing their “sensibilities.” People of the Book are morally answerable to history for their ineptitude. Why blame them when they themselves were part and parcel of a global culture that was morally and socially decrepit, which Quran summarizes:

30:41. Disorder and corruption has prevailed on land and sea owing to the evil (deeds) which people have wrought…[see also Ulfat Aziz Samad in Rebuttal 9e]

Their faith was of no use to them nor anyone else as it had become ineffective due to its malaise. They had no capacity left in them, neither their scriptures had the strength to reform the world. Essentially they were a living bigotry and rejection of Faith by them that was brought by greats like Moses and Jesus. Their religion had hollowed into a shell devoid of its soul. Their religion was anything but Faith. Whether the people of Book realized it or not, the only way to get rid of their bigotry and rejection of Faith was the provision of some kind of a manifest proof.

God by definition is not an unjust entity. He could not have sat idle despite the empty homilies of the people of the Book. He had to intervene. So He did by sending in the manifest proof of a Prophet and the Message i.e.

98:2. A great Messenger (- Muhammad) from Allâh reciting (to them) written leaves of the Book, free from all impurities,

The people of the Book cannot extricate themselves from their historical tempering of the original message delivered to them. Besides the message, the prophets who serve as models for future generations had been transformed into mythological characters whose “sunnah” or example could not fit human needs for its reformation. Factually, the Jews and Christians then and now are awaiting for the Messiah, but due to their racial inclinations they could not accept a non-Israeli manifest proof – A great Messenger (- Muhammad) from Allâh reciting (to them) written leaves of the Book, free from all impurities – the same impurities that they had introduced into their Books and the sunnah of their prophets. As to what those written leaves of the Book had in them? Read next:

98:3. Consisting of eternal laws and commandments.

This movie so far has proven one point. These vociferous Islam haters have not been able to challenge and disprove even a single of the eternal laws and commandments of Quran, for the mere fact that these eternal laws and commandments are eternal hence were also found in previous Books with the difference that they are now in Quran free from all impurities that were introduced into them by human hands. Yes, some of them paid heed to their own Scriptures which had prophecies of Muhammad and his Message and were thus able to refresh their Faith.

For the People of the Book, read next:

98:4. Those to whom the Scripture was given became divided only after the manifest proof had come to them.

They were divided into old and new school with advent of Muhammad and Quran i.e. new Islam or the old Islam – Judaism and Christianity. Ever wondered about those who adopted eternal laws and commandments free from all impurities by becoming Muslims? What did they do different from what they were doing before?

98:5. (They have done it) though (in Islam) they were enjoined nothing more than to serve Allâh, bearing true faith in Him, (and) being upright, and to observe Prayer and to keep on presenting the Zakât. That is the true and firm conduct of faith.

Essentially the Jewish and Christian converters to Islam did not do much different than before except refinement of their monotheism, righteousness, praying (and appreciating) to God of mankind and participating in charity.

But, as far as those who did not transition to the purified eternal laws and commandments:

98:6. Verily, those who disbelieve from among the people of the Scripture and (from among) those who associate gods with God shall be consigned to the Fire of Gehenna. Therein they shall abide. It is they who are the worst of all creatures.

At the time of revelation of these verses, the people of Scripture were only Jews and Christians, and thereafter includes Muslims as well.

For those who miss out the bus of monotheism, righteousness, praying to God of mankind and being charitable, are the inevitably worst of all the creatures because, devoid of guidance, expecting that there is no accountability and teetering on incitement of animal-self, one easily stumbles to ones base desires of sin (- greed, injustice, hate, discrimination, racism, exploitation, lying, stealing, transgressing, unchaste behavior etc. etc.) – essentially someone who deliberately falls on one’s own knife. Such a person is nothing short of a selfish bigot or mildly put worst of all the creatures. Quran draws attention to this self harm:

4:111. And whoever commits a sin deliberately, commits it only against himself. Allâh is All-Knowing, All-Wise.

As a consequence of one’s sins (- greed, injustice, hate, discrimination, racism, exploitation, lying, stealing, transgressing, unchaste behavior etc. etc.) one suffers from self inflicted torment when such worst of all the creatures are consigned to Fire of Gehenna (-Gehinnom). As to what that Fire of Gehinnom is:

104:5. And what should make you know what the crushing torment is?
104:6. (It is) the Fire set ablaze by Allâh,
104:7. And which rises over (the feelings of) the hearts (- the origin of a man’s hell).
104:8. It (- Fire) will be closed in on them (so as not to let them escape from it and also increase for them the torture of heat).

Then, it would be unjust for worst of all the creatures to invent a God to blame. Whereas God absolves Himself:

4:40. Verily, Allâh does not do injustice not (even) so much as the weight of an atom; and if there be a single good deed He multiplies it and gives from Himself a great reward.

But, lets not lose hope, there is a fire-escape built into the system i.e.

98:7. Verily, those who believe and do deeds of righteousness, it is they who are the noblest of all creatures.

To be the noblest of all creatures is no more than to do deeds of righteousness, which are the basic human values appreciated all over the globe. The fruition of righteousness evolves into more Faith and more righteousness, a never ending cycle that manifests into persons of the likes of Mother Teresas and Edhis of our times, whom none can reward to the fullest but God:

98:8. Their reward is with their Lord – Gardens of Eternity [-Faith] served with running streams [-righteous deeds] (to keep them green and flourishing), they shall abide therein, for ever and ever. Allâh is well-pleased with them and they are well-pleased with Him (in their state of highest bliss). Such is (the reward) for a person who stands in awe of his Lord.

Bottom Line – To whom are these verses addressed? They are addressed to all those with or without the Scriptures. Remember, He is the God of Mankind, His Laws of cause and consequence, of reward and requital, apply equally to everyone, Muslims included. Why make the message any complicated than what it is:

4:39. Why, what (harm) could come to them if they believed in Allâh [-and the Laws that emanate from Him] and in the Last Day and spent from that which Allâh had provided them? Indeed, Allâh knows them full well.

References:
Holy Quran – Nooruddin
Fallacy of quoting out of context – Wikipedia
Gehenna – Wikipedia

Read further:
Anwaar-ul-Quran (pg 166-78)– Dr. Basharat Ahmad
Holy Quran (pg 788-89) – Muhammad Ali, edited by Zahid Aziz

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