Revisiting The Issue of the Uncreated Quran Pt. 2

I proceed from where I left off (https://answeringislamblog.wordpress.com/2019/10/28/revisiting-the-issue-of-the-uncreated-quran-pt-1/).

Here’s a quick summary of the orthodox Islamic view of the Quran:

  1. The words of Allah eternally subsist within the essence/nature of Allah since they are part of his attributes.
  2. Allah’s attributes are uncreated and therefore inseparable from him.
  3. Since Allah’s attributes are inseparable they are all divine in nature.
  4. The Quran is the word of Allah.
  5. Therefore, the Quran is uncreated, eternally subsists within the essence of Allah, and therefore inseparable from him.
  6. Being the word of Allah, the Quran has the property of being divine, meaning it is divine speech as opposed to being human, animal, and/or angelic speech.
  7. The Quran consists of a second nature, namely a physical aspect, one that is temporal and created, since it is also a book.

This now introduces some insurmountable problems for the Islamic conception of monotheism.

If the Quran is inseparable from Allah then that means an essential aspect of Allah became a part of creation by becoming a physical, tangible entity, namely, a book! Therefore, when Muslims touch the Quran they are actually touching Allah, or at least an essential part of him. This further means, that when an individual desecrates the Quran either by burning it, as in the case of the third caliph Uthman,

Or by tearing it shreds, stomping on it, etc., this means that an essential aspect of Allah is being desecrated, which therefore means that Allah himself is being desecrated and dishonored. Therefore, the only way around this dilemma is by claiming that the Quran is not a part of Allah but completely distinct and separate from him.

However, this introduces a different set of problems. If the Quran is separate from Allah then this means that Muslims have two separate uncreated beings in existence. Note the logic of this argument:

  1. Allah and the Quran are uncreated.
  2. The Quran is not Allah but separate and distinct from him.
  3. Therefore, Allah and the Quran are two eternal beings that exist independently from one another.
  4. For the Quran to have eternally existed independently from Allah means that Allah has no control over it, since he didn’t create it and it isn’t a part of him.
  5. The Quran, therefore, is autonomous and sovereign in the same sense and to the same degree that Allah is.    

The Quran and its individual surahs also speak and can appear separately in visible form. Since the modern Quran consists of 114 chapters, this means that the Muslim revelation is a multi-personal entity eternally made up of 114 living, conscious beings and/or persons. Once again, note the problem this raises for the followers of Muhammad:

  1. The Quran and its 114 surahs are conscious, living agents that can appear in visible form, which can and will speak and/or intercede with Allah on behalf of others.
  2. Since the Quran is uncreated this leaves Muslims with two options:
  • If the Quran is separate and independent from Allah and has eternally existed then this means that there are 115 gods that have existed for all eternity.
  • If the Quran is inseparable from Allah then this means that the Islamic deity is a multipersonal Being, consisting of 115 divine persons who can and will appear in visible form.

The Muslim woes are far from over.

What About Jesus?

The Islamic scripture plainly testifies that Jesus is the living, personal Word of Allah who came froth from Allah as a Spirit in order to take on human flesh from Mary:

When the angels said, ‘Mary, God gives thee good tidings of a Word from Him whose name is Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary; high honoured shall he be in this world and the next, near stationed to God. S. 3:45 Arberry

O People of the Book! Go not beyond the limits in your way of life and say not about God but The Truth: That the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was a Messenger of God and His Word that He cast to Mary and a Spirit from Him. So believe in God and His Messengers. And say not: Three. To refrain yourselves from it is better for you. There is only One God. Glory be to Him that He have a son! To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in and on the earth and God sufficed as a Trustee. S. 4:171 (Dr. Laleh Bakhtiar https://www.islamawakened.com/quran/4/st46.htm)

The Quran and Islamic tradition further attest that Jesus is faultless, absolutely pure, and therefore perfect:

He said: I am only a messenger of thy Lord, that I may bestow on thee a faultless son. S. 19:19 Pickthall

It is related that Abu Hurayra said… “They will go to ‘Isa and say, ‘O ‘Isa! You are the Messenger of Allah and HIS WORD which He cast to Maryam and a spirit from Him. You spoke to people while in the cradle. Intercede with your Lord on our behalf. Do you not see what we are suffering?’ ‘Isa will say, ‘My Lord is angry today with such anger as has never existed before nor will again,’ AND HE DID NOT MENTION A SIN. ‘O my soul! My soul! My soul! Go to someone else. Go to Muhammad.’” (Aisha Bewley, The Sahih Collection of al-Bukhari, Chapter 68. Book of Tafsir https://bewley.virtualave.net/bukhari31.html; bold, capital and underline emphasis mine)

And:

Abu Huraira reported… “Moses would say to them: Verily my Lord is angry as He had never been angry before and would never be angry afterwards. I, in fact, killed a person whom I had not been ordered to kill. I am concerned with myself, I am concerned with myself. You better go to Jesus. They would come to Jesus and would say: O Jesus, thou art the messenger of Allah and thou conversed with people in the cradle, (thou art) HIS WORD which He sent down upon Mary, and (thou art) the Spirit from Him; so intercede for us with thy Lord. Don’t you see (the trouble) in which we are? Don’t you see (the misfortune) that has overtaken us? Jesus would say: Verily, my Lord is angry today as He had never been angry before or would ever be angry afterwards. HE MENTIONED NO SIN OF HIS. (He simply said:) I am concerned with myself, I am concerned with myself; you go to someone else: better go to Muhammad. They would come to me and say: O Muhammad, thou art the messenger of Allah and the last of the apostles. Allah has pardoned thee all thy previous and later sins…” (Sahih Muslim, Book 001, Number 0378 http://searchtruth.com/book_display.php?book=001&translator=2&start=0&number=0378; bold and capital emphasis mine)

Here, again, is the particular quotation from Sunan Abu Dawud, which  I cited in the previous segment:

4127. The Prophet called the Qur’an the perfect words of Allah. A perfect word cannot be a created thing. (Sunan Abu Dawud, English translation with explanatory notes by Prof. Ahmad Hasan [Sh. Muhammad Ashraf Publishers, Booksellers & Exporters; Lahore, Pakistan, 1984], XXXV. Kitab al-Sunnah [Book of Model Behaviour (of the Prophet)], Chapter 1698: The Qur’an, The Word of Allah, pp. 1325-26; bold emphasis mine)

Let’s break down the logic of this Islamic assertion:

  1. Allah’s words are perfect.
  2. A perfect word cannot be a created thing.
  3. Jesus is the perfect Word of Allah.
  4. Jesus, therefore, cannot be a created thing but must be eternal by nature.
  5. Since Jesus is uncreated he must have eternally subsisted as an essential aspect of Allah’s being/nature, and therefore inseparable from Allah.
  6. Allah’s words are divine in nature.
  7. Since Jesus is Allah’s word he must, therefore, be divine in essence.
  8. Islamic theology concurs that God is the only being who has eternally existed.
  9. Jesus, must, therefore, be God while also being distinct from the God whose eternal Word he happens to be.

In other words, the Quran and Islamic traditions are merely echoing what the Apostle John wrote by inspiration of the Holy Spirit:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were created through Him, and without Him nothing was created that was created. In Him was life, and the life was the light of mankind… The true Light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world. He was in the world, and the world was created through Him, yet the world did not know Him… The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, the glory as the only Son of the Father, full of grace and truth… No one has seen God at any time. The only Son, who is at the Father’s side, has made Him known.” John 1:1-4, 9-10, 14, 18

“That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have touched, concerning the Word of life—the life was revealed, and we have seen it and testify to it, and announce to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was revealed to us—we declare to you that which we have seen and heard, that you also may have fellowship with us. And our fellowship is with the Father and with His Son Jesus Christ.” 1 John 1:1-3

“He is clothed with a robe dipped in blood. His name is called The Word of God.” Revelation 19:13

Muhammad was merely parroting John’s Logos Christology, which identifies Jesus as the eternal Word of God whom the Father employed to create all things and who then tabernacled in the blessed, consecrated womb of Mary, his beloved mother, in order to take on human flesh from her by the power of the Holy Spirit:

“Now the birth of Jesus Christ happened this way: After His mother Mary was engaged to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child by the Holy Spirit. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man and not willing to make her a public example, had in mind to divorce her privately. But while he thought on these things, the angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream saying, ‘Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for He who is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. She will bear a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins.’ Now all this occurred to fulfill what the Lord had spoken through the prophet, saying, ‘A virgin shall be with child, and will bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,’ which is interpreted, ‘God with us.’ Then Joseph, being awakened from sleep, did as the angel of the Lord had commanded him, and remained with his wife, and did not know her until she had given birth to her firstborn Son. And he called His name JESUS.” Matthew 1:18-25

“In the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee named Nazareth, to a virgin betrothed to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. And the virgin’s name was Mary. The angel came to her and said, ‘Greetings, you who are highly favored. The Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women.’ When she saw him, she was troubled by his words, and considered in her mind what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her, ‘Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. Listen, you will conceive in your womb and bear a Son and shall call His name JESUS. He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest. And the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David, and He will reign over the house of Jacob forever. And of His kingdom there will be no end.’ Then Mary said to the angel, ‘How can this be, since I do not know a man?’ The angel answered her, ‘The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you. Therefore the Holy One who will be born will be called the Son of God.’” Luke 1:26-35

To recap what we have learned:

Islamic tradition teaches that the Quran is the uncreated speech of Allah and inseparable from him.

It further proclaims that the Quran consists of a second part, one that is physical, tangible, and therefore a part of creation, since it is also a book.

Since the Quran cannot be separated from Allah, this means that an essential part of Allah’s own being has become physical, and therefore is now a part of creation.

This makes the Muslim revelation similar to the biblical proclamation that Jesus is the eternal Word who became flesh, one divine Person with two distinct natures, who is inseparable from God.

The Islamic sources actually agree with the biblical revelation in that both the Quran and ahadith affirm that Jesus is indeed the eternal Word of Allah who proceeded forth from him as a Spirit and entered into Mary’s blessed womb in order to take on human nature.

The ahadith also testify that each of the 114 chapters of the Quran is a distinct center of consciousness that can speak and pray, and which can appear separately in visible form.

This means that, according to the Islamic “revelation,” Allah does not exist as a singular person, but is rather a multi personal Being who eternally subsists in at least 116 divine persons, namely, Allah, the 114 surahs of the Quran, and Jesus.

Therefore Muslims, you have some insurmountable problems!

So much for the assertion that Islam teaches absolute, pure monotheism.

Further Reading

The Quran: The Islamic Counterfeit To Jesus Christ (https://answeringislamblog.wordpress.com/2019/05/21/the-quran-the-islamic-counterfeit-to-jesus-christ/)

The Inlibration of the Word Pt. 1 (https://answeringislam.net/authors/shamoun/inlibration1.html), Pt. 2 (https://answeringislamblog.wordpress.com/2018/10/17/the-inlibration-of-the-word-pt-1/)

The Quran Confirms the Prehuman Existence And Incarnation of Christ Pt. 1 (https://answeringislamblog.wordpress.com/2016/09/05/the-quran-confirms-the-prehuman-existence-and-incarnation-of-christ/), Pt. 2 (https://answeringislamblog.wordpress.com/2019/05/22/the-quran-confirms-the-prehuman-existence-and-incarnation-of-christ-pt-2/)

Even More Proof from the Quran that Jesus is God Incarnate! Pt. 1 (https://answeringislamblog.wordpress.com/2019/01/08/even-more-proof-from-the-quran-that-jesus-is-god-incarnate-pt-1/), Pt. 2 (https://answeringislamblog.wordpress.com/2019/01/08/even-more-proof-from-the-quran-that-jesus-is-god-incarnate-pt-2/)

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