A “Prophet” for Profit: More of Muhammad’s Inconsistencies Exposed

The Quran explicitly states that jizya, i.e. a sum of money, was to be taken only from the “people of the Book,” e.g., Jews and Christians:

O ye who believe! The idolaters only are unclean. So let them not come near the Inviolable Place of Worship after this their year. If ye fear poverty (from the loss of their merchandise) Allah shall preserve you of His bounty if He will. Lo! Allah is Knower, Wise. Fight against such of those who have been given the Scripture as believe not in Allah nor the Last Day, and forbid not that which Allah hath forbidden by His messenger, and follow not the Religion of Truth, until they pay the tribute readily, being brought low. S. 9:28-29 Pickthall

Ibn Kathir explains the reason why Muhammad’s deity ordered him to extract jizya from Jews and Christians:

The Battle of Tabuk

According to the scholars of Syirah [sic], this battle took place in Rajab, in the 9th year of Hijra.

Occasion of the Battle

When Allah, Most High, ordered the believers to prohibit the disbelievers form [sic] entering or coming near the sacred Mosque. On that, Quraish thought that this would reduce their profit from trade. THEREFORE, Allah, Most High, COMPENSATED THEM and ordered them to fight the people of the Book UNTIL THEY EMBRACE ISLAM OR PAY THE JIZYAH. Allah says… (At-Tawbah: 28-29)

Therefore, the Messenger of Allah decided to fight the Romans IN ORDER TO CALL THEM TO ISLAM… (Ibn Kathir, The Battles of the Prophet, translated by Wa’il ‘Abdul Mut’aal Shihab [Dar Al-Manarah/El-Mansoura, Egypt, Second edition 2001], pp. 183-184; capital emphasis ours)


Idolators are no longer allowed into Al-Masjid Al-Haram

Allah commands His believing servants, who are pure in religion and person, to expel the idolators who are filthy in the religious sense, from Al-Masjid Al-Haram. After the revelation of this Ayah, idolators were no longer allowed to go near the Masjid. This Ayah was revealed in the ninth year of Hijrah. The Messenger of Allah sent `Ali in the company of Abu Bakr that year to publicize to the idolators that no Mushrik will be allowed to perform Hajj after that year, nor a naked person allowed to perform Tawaf around the House. Allah completed this decree, made it a legislative ruling, as well as, a fact of reality. `Abdur-Razzaq recorded that Jabir bin `Abdullah commented on the Ayah 

<O you who believe! Verily, the Mushrikin are impure. So let them not come near Al-Masjid Al-Haram after this year> “Unless it was a servant or one of the people of Dhimmah.” Imam Abu `Amr Al-Awza’i said, “Umar bin `Abdul-`Aziz wrote (to his governors) TO PREVENT JEWS AND CHRISTIANS FROM ENTERING THE MASJIDS OF MUSLIMS, AND HE FOLLOWED HIS ORDER WITH ALLAH’S STATEMENT 

<Verily, the Mushrikin are impure.>” `Ata’ said, “All of the Sacred Area [the Haram] is considered a Masjid, for Allah said… 

<So let them not come near Al-Masjid Al-Haram (at Makkah) after this year.> This Ayah indicates that idolators are impure and that the believers are pure. In the Sahih is the following…

<<The believer does not become impure.>> Allah said…  

<and if you fear poverty, Allah will enrich you, out of His bounty.> Muhammad bin Ishaq commented, “The people said, ‘Our markets will be closed, our commerce disrupted, and what we earned will vanish.’ So Allah revealed this verse…

<and if you fear poverty, Allah will enrich you, out of His bounty>, from other resources…

<if He wills>, until…

<… and feel themselves subdued.> This Ayah means, ‘this will be your compensation for the closed markets that you feared would result.’ Therefore, Allah compensated them for the losses they incurred because they severed ties with idolators, by the Jizyah they earned from the People of the Book.” Similar statements were reported from Ibn `Abbas, Mujahid, `Ikrimah, Sa`id bin Jubayr, Qatadah and Ad-Dahhak and others. Allah said…

<Surely, Allah is All-Knowing>, in what benefits you…

<All-Wise>, in His orders and prohibitions, for He is All-Perfect in His actions and statements, All-Just in His creations and decisions, Blessed and Hallowed be He. This is why Allah compensated Muslims for their losses by the amount of Jizyah that they took from the people of Dhimmah. (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Q. 9:28 http://www.qtafsir.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=2568&Itemid=64)

It wasn’t only to compensate Muslims for any losses suffered by the abolishment of idolatry in Arabia, especially at the kabah, but also for the humiliation and degradation of Jews and Christians:

Paying Jizyah is a Sign of Kufr AND DISGRACE

Allah said… 

<until they pay the Jizyah>, if they do not choose to embrace Islam…

<with willing submission>, in defeat and subservience…

<and feel themselves subdued.>, DISGRACED, HUMILIATED AND BELITTLED. Therefore, Muslims are not allowed to honor the people of Dhimmah or elevate them above Muslims, FOR THEY ARE MISERABLE, DISGRACED AND HUMILIATED. Muslim recorded from Abu Hurayrah that the Prophet said… 

<<Do not initiate the Salam to the Jews and Christians, and if you meet any of them in a road, FORCE THEM TO ITS NARROWEST ALLEY.>>

This is why the Leader of the faithful `Umar bin Al-Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, demanded his well-known conditions be met by the Christians, THESE CONDITIONS THAT ENSURED THEIR CONTINUED HUMILIATION, DEGRADATION AND DISGRACE. The scholars of Hadith narrated from `Abdur-Rahman bin Ghanm Al-Ash`ari that he said, “I recorded for `Umar bin Al-Khattab, may Allah be pleased with him, the terms of the treaty of peace he conducted with the Christians of Ash-Sham:

‘In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. This is a document to the servant of Allah `Umar, the Leader of the faithful, from the Christians of such and such city. When you (Muslims) came to us we requested safety for ourselves, children, property and followers of our religion.

We made a condition on ourselves that we will neither erect in our areas a monastery, church, or a sanctuary for a monk, nor restore any place of worship that needs restoration nor use any of them for the purpose of enmity against Muslims.

We will not prevent any Muslim from resting in our churches whether they come by day or night, and we will open the doors [of our houses of worship] for the wayfarer and passerby.

Those Muslims who come as guests, will enjoy boarding and food for three days.

We will not allow a spy against Muslims into our churches and homes or hide deceit [or betrayal] against Muslims.

We will not teach our children the Qur’an, publicize practices of Shirk, invite anyone to Shirk or prevent any of our fellows from embracing Islam, if they choose to do so.


We will not imitate their clothing, caps, turbans, sandals, hairstyles, speech, nicknames and title names, or ride on saddles, hang swords on the shoulders, collect weapons of any kind or carry these weapons.

We will not encrypt our stamps in Arabic, or sell liquor.

We will have the front of our hair cut, wear our customary clothes wherever we are, wear belts around our waist, refrain from erecting crosses on the outside of our churches and demonstrating them and our books in public in Muslim fairways and markets.

We will not sound the bells in our churches, except discretely, or raise our voices while reciting our holy books inside our churches in the presence of Muslims, nor raise our voices [with prayer] at our funerals, or light torches in funeral processions in the fairways of Muslims, or their markets.

We will not bury our dead next to Muslim dead, or buy servants who were captured by Muslims. We will be guides for Muslims and refrain from breaching their privacy in their homes.’

When I gave this document to `Umar, he added to it, `We will not beat any Muslim. These are the conditions that we set against ourselves and followers of our religion IN RETURN FOR SAFETY AND PROTECTION. If we break any of these promises that we set for your benefit against ourselves, then our Dhimmah (promise of protection) is broken and you are allowed to do with us what you are allowed of people of defiance and rebellion.’” (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Q. 9:29 http://www.qtafsir.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=2566&Itemid=64; capital and underline emphasis ours)

Now as far as idolaters are concerned, the Muslim scripture ordered them to either convert to Islam or be murdered. There was no third option for them:

Freedom from obligation (is proclaimed) from Allah and His messenger toward those of the idolaters with whom ye made a treaty. Travel freely in the land four months, and know that ye cannot escape Allah and that Allah will confound the disbelievers (in His Guidance). And a proclamation from Allah and His messenger to all men on the day of the Greater Pilgrimage that Allah is free from obligation to the idolaters, and (so is) His messenger. So, if ye repent, it will be better for you; but if ye are averse, then know that ye cannot escape Allah. Give tidings (O Muhammad) of a painful doom to those who disbelieve, Excepting those of the idolaters with whom ye (Muslims) have a treaty, and who have since abated nothing of your right nor have supported anyone against you. (As for these), fulfil their treaty to them till their term. Lo! Allah loveth those who keep their duty (unto Him). Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them, and take them (captive), and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish worship and pay the poor-due, then leave their way free. Lo! Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. And if anyone of the idolaters seeketh thy protection (O Muhammad), then protect him so that he may hear the Word of Allah, and afterward convey him to his place of safety. That is because they are a folk who know not. S. 9:1-6 Pickthall

This is where Muhammad’s inconsistency comes in. According to the Islamic tradition, the Persians who were also known as Magians were classified as idolaters, since they were not considered to be monotheists whom Allah had given a revealed scripture to. Note, for instance, what the following narration states:

Jami` at-Tirmidhi

Chapters on Tafsir

Narrated Sa’eed bin Jubair:

from Ibn ‘Abbas, regarding the saying of Allah, Most High: Alif Lam Mim. The Romans have been defeated. In the nearest land (30:1-3)” he said: “Ghulibat wa Ghalabat (defeated and then victorious).” He said: “The idolaters wanted the Persians to be victorious over the Romans BECAUSE THEY TOO WERE PEOPLE WHO WORSHIPED IDOLS, while the Muslims wanted the Romans to be victorious over the Persians BECAUSE THEY WERE PEOPLE OF THE BOOK. This was mentioned to Abu Bakr, so Abu Bakr mentioned that to the Messenger of Allah and he said: ‘They will certainly prevail.’ Abu Bakr mentioned that to them, and they said: ‘Make a wager between us and you; if we win, we shall get this and that, and if you win, you shall get this or that.’ He made the term five years, but they (the Romans) were not victorious. They mentioned that to the Prophet and he said: “Why did you not make it less (than)” – He (one of the narrators said): I think he said: “ten?” He said: Sa’eed said: “Al-Bid’ is what is less than then” – he said: “Afterwards the Romans have been victorious.” He said: “That is what Allah Most High said: ‘Alif Lam Mim. The Romans have been defeated’ up to His saying: ‘And on the day, the believers will rejoice – with the help of Allah. He helps whom He wills (30:1-5).’ Sufyan said: “I heard that they were victorious over them on the Day of Badr.”

Grade: SAHIH (Darussalam)

English reference: Vol. 5, Book 44, Hadith 3193

Arabic reference: Book 47, Hadith 3497 (sunnah.com https://sunnah.com/urn/642230; capital and underline emphasis ours)

And yet Muhammad still went ahead and took jizya from them!

Jami` at-Tirmidhi

21 The Book on Military Expeditions

(31) Chapter: About Taking The Jizyah From The Zoroastrians 

Narrated Bajalah:

That ‘Umar would not take the Jizyah from the Zoroastrians until ‘Abdur-Rahman bin ‘Awf informed him that the Prophet took Jizyah from the Zoroastrians of Hajar.”

There is more dialogue in the Hadith than this. And this Hadith is Hasan Sahih.

Grade: Sahih (Darussalam)

Reference: Jami` at-Tirmidhi 1587

In-book reference: Book 21, Hadith 49

English translation: Vol. 3, Book 19, Hadith 1587 (sunnah.com https://sunnah.com/tirmidhi/21/49; underline emphasis ours)

Jami` at-Tirmidhi

21 The Book on Military Expeditions

(31) Chapter: About Taking The Jizyah From The Zoroastrians

Narrated Malik : From Az-Zuhri, that Sa’ib bin Yazid said: “The Messenger of Allah took the Jizyah from the Zoroastrians of Bahrain, and ‘Umar took it in Persia, and ‘Uthman took it from the Persians.” I asked Muhammad about this, so he said: “It is: ‘Malik from Az-Zuhri from the Prophet.'”

Grade: Hasan (Darussalam)

Reference: Jami` at-Tirmidhi 1588

In-book reference: Book 21, Hadith 50

English translation: Vol. 3, Book 19, Hadith 1588 (sunnah.com https://sunnah.com/tirmidhi/21/50; underline emphasis ours)

The following Muslim source also confirms that Muhammad took jizya from the Persians, despite admitting the fact that the Persians were no different than the Arab pagans, but were in fact worse than them in their disbelief and idolatry, since the Persians didn’t believe in one creator and were never given a book, like the Jews and Christians:

As for his guidance concerning immunity, he did not impose the jizya upon the disbelievers until Baraa’a had been revealed which was during the eighth year. Once the verse of the jizya was revealed, he took it from the Magians and the people of the book. He sent Mu’aadh to Yemen and granted the Jews immunity while imposing it, though he did not take it from the Jews of Khaybar. Consequently, some have been lead to believe that they were exempt. However, he fought them and made peace with them before the jizya was introduced. Thereafter, Allaah the glorified and most high ordered him to fight the people of the book until they gave the jizya, though the people of Khaybar were not included at the time due to the nature of their accord. However, when ‘Umar sent them to Syria, their accord changed and they were treated like other people of the book…

The jizya was not introduced until the year of Tabook which was three years after Khaybar…

When the verse of the jizya was revealed, he took it from the Jews, Christians, and Magians, but he did not take it from idolaters. Consequently, it has been said that it may only be taken from these three groups. However, it has also been said that it may be taken from the people of the book and other disbelievers such as non-Arab idolaters.

The first view has been held by Ash Shaafi’ee and Ahmad according to one narration, and the second view has been held by Aboo Haneefa and Ahmad according to another narration.

Those who maintain the first position say: rather, he did not take the jizya from Arab polytheists, because it was introduced after the conquest of Makka when the Arabs accepted Islaam en masse. For this reason, he attacked Tabook afterward, because they were Christian. However, if Arab polytheists remained, it would be more appropriate that they be fought instead.

If one considers the prophetic biography, he will realize that this is true. The jizya was not taken because there was no one to take it from, not because a people were exempt. However, he did take the jizya from the Magians, though narrations which state that they were people of the book are unreliable.

There is no difference between fire worshippers and idolaters. In fact, the latter maintained some aspects of the religion of Ibraaheem unlike the former who were his enemy. Consequently, it would be more appropriate that the jizya be taken from the former instead of the latter, and the messenger of Allaah has said: (when you meet your enemy, give them three options, if they choose one, avoid them). Thereafter, he enjoined that they accept Islaam, the jizya, or war.

Al Mugheera has said: our prophet has commanded us to fight you until you worship Allaah or pay the jizya.

He agreed to a peace treaty with the Christians of Najran in return for 2, 000 garments, thirty coats of mail, thirty horses, thirty camels, and thirty of each type of weapon used during war.

When he sent Mu’aadh to Yemen, he commanded him to take one dinaar or the equivalent of fabric from every mature male. This proves that the jizya is unspecified in terms of type and quantity. Rather, it can be fabric, gold, or garments, and the quantity fluctuates according to the needs of the believers and the condition of those from whom it is taken.

He nor his successors differentiated between Arab and non-Arabs in terms of the Jizya. Rather, he took it from Arab Christians and Arab Magians, because the Arabs were a nation that did not have a book, and each faction practiced the religion of the nation which it was adjacent to. Consequently, the people of Bahrain were Magians since their neighbors were Persians, Banoo Taghlab were Christians since their neighbors were Romans, and some of the tribes of Yemen were Jewish since their neighbors were Jews. As a result, he imposed the jizya without considering when the forefathers of those previously mentioned had become people of the book. In fact, some of the children of the Ansaar accepted Judaism after it was abrogated by the law of ‘Eesa, and their fathers wished to impose Islaam upon them, thus Allaah the most high revealed the following: {there is no compulsion in religion} [Al Baqara/256]…

The prophet took the jizya mostly from Arab Jews, Christians, and Magians, though he did not investigate when any of them accepted his religion. (Zad-ul Ma’ad Fi Hadyi Khairi-L Ibad (Provisions for the Afterlife Which Lie Within Prophetic Guidance), by Imam Ibn Qayyim Al-Jawziyya (691-751 H), Translated by Ismail Abdus Salaam, pp. 304-306 https://archive.org/stream/ProvisionsOfTheAfterlife/ProvisionsOfTheAfterlife_djvu.txt; bold emphasis ours)


It has already been mentioned that the prophet began his mission without fighting or imposing the jizya. He remained as such for more than a decade while in Makka, he was then granted permission to wage war once he migrated to Al Madeena. Thereafter, he was commanded to retaliate and to avoid those who were peaceful. Once Baraa’a was revealed in the eighth year, he was commanded to fight Arabs who had not accepted Islaam and had not engaged in a peace agreement. However, he was not commanded to impose the jizya. In fact, he fought the Jews numerous times without doing so.

He was then commanded to fight the people of the book until they accepted Islaam or the jizya. As a result, he imposed the jizya from Arab Jews and Christians as well as Magians. Since he did not impose the jizya upon Arab polytheists. Ash Shaafi’ee and Ahmad have said: the jizya is only imposed upon the Jews, Christians, and Magians.

The Magians are polytheists without a book, so the fact that the jizya was imposed upon them proves that it could be imposed upon all polytheists. However, the prophet did not impose the jizya upon Arab idolaters, though he could not do so since they accepted Islaam before the verse of jizya was revealed. For this reason, he did not impose the jizya upon the Jews who waged war against him.

The disbelief of the Magians was of greater magnitude than the disbelief of the idolaters. In fact, the idolaters acknowledged the lordship of Allaah. They were also aware that he is the only creator, but they worshiped other deities upon the pretense that they brought them closer to Allaah. Nevertheless, they did not believe that one creator is the source of good while another creator is the source of evil as the Magians believe. In addition, they did not allow one to marry his daughter, sister, or mother. In fact, they maintained some aspects of the religion of Ibraaheem.

As for the Magians, they did not have a book nor a prophetic religion. As for the narration which states that they lost their book and their law when their king had sex with his daughter, it is absolutely unreliable. However, even if it were reliable, the Magians could not be considered people of the book.

It is well known that the Arabs followed the religion of Ibraaheem who had a book and a law, and the idolaters could not have altered their religion more than the Magians. However, it is not known that the Magians observed any form of prophetic law. As a result, the Magians whose religion was the worst could not be considered better than Arab polytheists.

Some have said: the jizya is imposed upon every disbeliever except Arab polytheists.

Others have excluded the tribe of Quraysh which is meaningless, because no disbelievers remained, hence there was no one to impose the jizya upon. In reality, the prophet invited all Arabs to accept Islaam or the jizya. (Ibid., pp. 717-718; bold emphasis ours)

This again illustrates Muhammad’s hypocrisy and inconsistency, as well as his lust for power and money. Muhammad did not hesitate to break his own commandments, which he claimed were sent down by his god, and/or abrogate them if doing so would help him attain the power, fame and lustful pleasures he so anxiously craved after.

It is rather obvious that for Muhammad, getting rich and satisfying his lustful desires were more important than remaining consistent with the very message that he claimed came from the lord of the worlds.

Further Reading

Muhammad’s Inconsistency (https://answeringislam.net/Muhammad/Inconsistent/index.html)


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