Muhammad: The Best Example of Morality and Virtue? Pt. 1

I am going to be responding to Paul Williams’ post here https://bloggingtheology.net/2016/12/08/26175/.

The Quran teaches that Muslims, or more specifically, Muhammad and his followers were the best of mankind:

Ye are the best community that hath been raised up for mankind. Ye enjoin right conduct and forbid indecency; and ye believe in Allah. And if the People of the Scripture had believed it had been better for them. Some of them are believers; but most of them are evil-livers. S. 3:110 Pickthall

According to the ahadith, one of the reasons why Muhammad and his men were so exemplary in their characters is because they would go around enslaving people in order to force them to become Muslims:

Abi Tufayl Amer al-Kinani said: The Messenger of Allah laughed and then said: Are you going to ask me about what I was laughing about? We said: Oh Messenger of Allah, what were you laughing about? He said: I saw people from my Ummah being herded into paradise IN CHAINS! We said: Who are they? He said: A group of non-Arabs taken prisoner by the Muhajirun and eventually enter paradise. [Collected by al-Haythami and authenticated by al-Albani]

And:

LXV: “You are the best nation ever to be produced before mankind.” (3:110)

4218. It is related from Abu Hurayra regarding,“You are the best nation ever to be produced before mankind”(3:110): “The people who are best before other people are those WHO DRAG THEM WITH CHAINS ROUND THEIR NECKS until they enter Islam.” (Aisha Bewley, The Sahih Collection of al-Bukhari, Chapter 68. Book of Tafsir https://bewley.virtualave.net/bukhari30.html; capital and underline emphasis ours)

Finally:

“Al-Bukhari recorded that Abu Hurayrah commented on this Ayah, ‘(You, Muslims, are) the best nation of people for the people, you bring them TIED IN CHAINS ON THEIR NECKS (capture them in war) and they later embrace Islam.’… Imam Ahmad recorded that `Ali bin Abi Talib said, ‘The Messenger of Allah said…

<<I was given what no other Prophet before me was given.>>

“We said, `O Messenger of Allah! What is it?’” He said…

<<I was given victory BY FEAR, I was given the keys of the earth, I was called Ahmad, the earth was made a clean place for me (to pray and perform Tayammum with it) and my Ummah was made the best Ummah.>>.’”

The chain of narration for this Hadith is Hasan. There are several Hadiths that we should mention here. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir http://www.qtafsir.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=503&Itemid=46; bold, capital and underline emphasis ours)

Here is how Williams’ unnamed Muhammadan tried to spin this:

Ibnul Jawzi said that this hadith is referring to people who were taken prisoner and then when they came to know about Islam and its beauty, they embraced it. They weren’t coerced into accepting Islam, but what led to their accepting Islam was ironically their initial capture and imprisonment.

So the Prophet is expressing his delight in the fact that the Muslim’s character and morals are so great, that even their prisoners of wars are getting impressed and adopting Islam eventually. It does not mean that they are being forced to accept Islam, nor does it mean that they are being imprisoned till they do or that they were imprisoned for that very purpose. The rules of war in Islam are known and need to be borne in mind.

Let’s see the beauty and morality of Muhammad and his companions, which supposedly impressed their prisoners so much that they decided to become Muhammadans themselves.

Raping Female Captives and Adultery

The Quran shamefully sanctions adultery and rape in certain situations. For instance, the following verse permits Muslim men (which includes Muhammad himself) to sleep with married women whom they have taken captive:

Also (prohibited are) women already married, except those whom your right hands possess: Thus hath God ordained (Prohibitions) against you: Except for these, all others are lawful, provided ye seek (them in marriage) with gifts from your property, – desiring chastity, not lust, seeing that ye derive benefit from them, give them their dowers (at least) as prescribed; but if, after a dower is prescribed, agree Mutually (to vary it), there is no blame on you, and God is All-knowing, All-wise. S. 4:24 Y. Ali

Tragically, this did not remain a mere abstraction but was readily put into practice by Muhammad’s sexually craved jihadists:

Abu Sirma said to Abu Sa’id al Khadri: O Abu Sa’id, did you hear Allah’s Messenger mentioning al-‘azl? He said: Yes, and added: We went out with Allah’s Messenger on the expedition to the Bi’l-Mustaliq and took captive some excellent Arab women; and we desired them, for we were suffering from the absence of our wives, (but at the same time) we also desired ransom for themSo we decided to have sexual intercourse with them but by observing ‘azl (Withdrawing the male sexual organ before emission of semen to avoid conception). But we said: We are doing an act whereas Allah’s Messenger is amongst us; why not ask him? So we asked Allah’s Messenger, and he said: It does not matter if you do not do it, for every soul that is to be born up to the Day of Resurrection will be born. (Sahih Muslim, Book 008, Number 3371 http://searchtruth.com/book_display.php?book=008&translator=2&start=0&number=3371)

And: 

(3) 3016. Abu Sa‘eed Al-Khudri said: “On the Day of Awtas, we captured some women who had husbands among the idolaters. SO SOME OF THE MEN DISLIKED THAT, so Allah, Most High, revealed: ‘And women already married, except those whom your right hands possess….’” (Sahih)

[Abu ‘Eisa said:] This Hadith is Hasan.

(4) 3017. Abu Sa‘eed Al-Khudri said: “we captured some women on the Day of Awtas and they had husbands among their people. That was mentioned to the Messenger of Allah so Allah revealed: ‘…And women already married, except those whom your right hands possess….” (Sahih)

[Abu ‘Eisa said:] This Hadith is Hasan.

This is how it was reported by Ath-Thawri, from ‘Uthman Al-Batti, from Abu Al-Khalil, from Abu Sa‘eed Al-Khudri from the Prophet and it is similar. “From Abu ‘Alqamah” is not in this Hadith and I do not know of anyone who mentioned Abu ‘Alqamah in this Hadith except in what Hammam mentioned from Qatadah. Abu Al-Khalil’s name is Salih bin Abi Mariam. (English Translation of Jami‘ At-Tirmidhi, Compiled by Imam Hafiz Abu ‘Eisa Mohammad Ibn ‘Eisa At-Tirmidhi, translated by Abu Khaliyl (USA), ahadith edited and referenced by Hafiz Tahir Zubair ‘Ali Za’i [Darussalam Publishers & Distributors, First Edition: November 2007], Volume 5, From Hadith No. 2606 to 3290, Chapter 4. Regarding Surat An-Nisa’, pp. 331-332; capital and underline emphasis ours)

Thus, Muhammad and his deity condoned and encouraged men to virtually rape their female captives whether they were married or not.

Now unless Williams’ source wants us to believe that such women whose families had just been murdered and (in some cases) whose husbands were still alive would actually consent to having sex with their captors, it should be apparent that the Islamic deity is actually permitting, and even encouraging, rape and adultery in his so-called holy book!

How truly sad and tragic for these women that Muhammad and his god did not share the shame and concern of the jihadists regarding the highly unethical nature of raping captives whose husbands were still alive. Instead, Allah and his messenger rushed to justify such a perverted and heinous crime!

Contrast this filth with what Deuteronomy teaches concerning the issue of female captives:

“When you go to war against your enemies and the LORD your God delivers them into your hands and you take captives, if you notice among the captives a beautiful woman and are attracted to her, you may take her AS YOUR WIFE. Bring her into your home and have her shave her head, trim her nails and put aside the clothes she was wearing when captured. After she has lived in your house and mourned her father and mother for a full month, then you may go to her and be her husband and she shall be your wife. If you are not pleased with her, let her go wherever she wishes. You must not sell her or treat her as a slave, since you have dishonored her.” Deuteronomy 21:10-14

Here we see that, instead of permitting men to rape captive women, the Holy Bible forces the Israelites to marry them if they wanted to have sex with them, and then letting them go free in case of a divorce. This means that the Holy Bible is actually dignifying these women by not allowing them to be treated the way Allah and his “messenger” had them treated, namely like animals. Now this is a command which predates the Quran by approximately 2200 years!

To say that such an injunction was truly shocking and revolutionary for that time period would be a wild understatement, just as the following commentaries illustrate:

“The law focuses on the rights of the woman by stating that the man who marries a female prisoner of war and subsequently becomes dissatisfied with her, for whatever reasons, is not permitted to reduce her to slaverySuch a woman had legal rights in ancient Israel, and moral obligations ensue from the fact that the man initiated a sexual relationship with her. Perhaps the most significant conclusion to draw from this text is the respect for the personhood of a captured woman. A primary concern in the laws of Deut 21–25 is for protecting the poor and vulnerable in society from exploitation on the part of the powerful.” (Duane L. Christensen, Word Biblical Commentary: Deuteronomy 21:10–34:12 [Thomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, TN 2002], Volume 6b, p. 475; bold emphasis ours)

“Throughout the ancient Mediterranean world, captive women of vanquished peoples were assumed to be the due sexual prerogative of the victors. This law exceptionally seeks to provide for the human rights of the woman who falls into this predicament… the verb ‘inah is also sometimes used for rape, and its employment here astringently suggests that the sexual exploitation of a captive woman, even in a legally sanctioned arrangement of concubinage, is equivalent to rape.” (Robert Alter, The Five Books of Moses: A Translation with Commentary [W. W. Norton & Company, 2008], p. 982; bold emphasis ours)

“The instructions given for the treatment of female captives in Deuteronomy 21:10-14 take it for granted that a conquering army have the right to dispose of the conquered population in any way that it wishes. It is hard for those coming from a different cultural context to see this as anything other than appalling, but this approach would have been unquestioned within the ancient Near East, and we have to see these instructions within that setting. What is remarkable is that although the woman may have had no choice in the matter--the soldier who fancied her has every right to make her this wife–nevertheless her identity as a human being is at least to some extent recognized. She is not to be thrown into the new situation but must be allowed time to mourn for her parents and her past life… Within these oppressive situations the laws are geared to provide at least a level of protection for the women involved… Women who were bought as wives or captured in war and taken as wives could not be sold as slaves or even neglected (Ex 21.11; Deut 21.14).” (The IVP Women’s Bible Commentary, eds. Catherine Clark Kroeger & Mary J. Evans [InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove, IL 2002], pp. 100, 102)

“The space given for weeping is not primarily a period of mourning (though it is perhaps to be assumed that the woman’s father has died in the herem; 20:13, 15). Rather, it is given in compassionate consideration of the large adjustment she must make, and the accompanying trauma. It is an acknowledgment, too, that her former life is ended and a new life is to begin (cf. Ps. 45:10). The hints of compassion breaking through the brutality of the age reflect an awareness of divine compassion, however limited by the thought climate of the times.” (Ian Cairns, Word and Presence: A Commentary on the book of Deuteronomy (International Theological Commentary), [William B. Eerdmans Publishing Co., Grand Rapids, MI 1992], p. 189; bold emphasis ours)

For more on the humanitarian nature of this OT passage we recommend the following article: A note on the humanitarian character of Deut 21.10-14 http://christianthinktank.com/remarkable.html.

Unfortunately, there’s more to the story. The so-called sound ahadith report that Muhammad taught that Allah has predestined the amount of adultery a person must necessarily commit:

Narrated Ibn ‘Abbas:
I did not see anything so resembling minor sins as what Abu Huraira said from the Prophet, who said, “Allah has written for the son of Adam his INEVITABLE share of adultery whether he is aware of it or not: The adultery of the eye is the looking (at something which is sinful to look at), and the adultery of the tongue is to utter (what it is unlawful to utter), and the innerself wishes and longs for (adultery) and the private parts turn that into reality or refrain from submitting to the temptation.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 8, Book 77, Number 609 http://searchtruth.com/book_display.php?book=77&translator=1&start=0&number=609)

Verily Allah has fixed the very portion of adultery which a man will indulge in, and which he OF NECESSITY MUST COMMIT (or there would be no escape from it). (Sahih Muslim, Book 033, Number 6421 http://searchtruth.com/book_display.php?book=033&translator=2&start=0&number=6421 – see also Number 6422)

In other words, these Muslims were only carrying out the very sexual filth which their god had predestined for them!

We will have more to say in the second part of our response https://answeringislamblog.wordpress.com/2016/12/11/muhammad-the-best-example-of-morality-and-virtue-pt-2/.

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