Some four years ago the Atlanta Journal published an article challenging the authenticity of the Quran. While Muslim intellectuals and activists dismissed the attack as naive and inauthentic, the Minaret and the Muslim Observer published several lengthy articles analyzing the Atlanta Journal article point by point. The papers concluded that the attacks on the legitimacy of the Quran were part of a long-term strategy crafted in the politically charged western academic environment of empirical sciences. Several Muslim intellectuals scoffed at the hypothesis, arguing that Muslims should not get involved in this debate.
Since then, over 50 articles have appeared in American newspapers and journals describing the Quran as a fake religious document. The latest article in the Newsweek's is one of them. The argument presented in the article is also advanced in Fables of the Ancients? Written by Alan Dundes (Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.). The argument of the Newsweek's article revolves around a single premise that promotes the idea that the Quran was a historical document and not a revealed scripture as asserted by the Quran.
The reason for this argument is simple. If the idea of the divine origin of the Quran is demolished, the whole foundation of Islam is demolished. Thus, Muslims would become skeptical about their source of guidance and would no longer revere their holy text as they had for centuries. In the earlier times, the so-called non-Muslim scholars of the Quran made several arguments challenging its authenticity. Among the chief accusations were that it was a book written by Prophet Muhammad, or a scripture copied from the Old and New Testament as dictated by Khadeeja bint Khawlid, (wife of the Prophet), or a document compiled by Muslim scholars over a period of 300 years, or a scripture that was secretly compiled at the Vatican to be delivered to the Prophet through Christian missionaries in Arabia, or a book that was compiled at the time of the third Caliph Uthman.
The latest attack surpasses all the previous fabrications and skepticism. The Newsweek in an article argues quoting a German scholar that the Quran was not revealed in Arabic, rather it was written in a language closer to Aramaic. It is a bizarre argument that cannot be taken seriously by those who value objectivity and fairness. There are several reasons for rejecting the point of view promoted by the Newsweek.
The authenticity of a book depends on its verification by the one that either authored it or narrated it. Some 15 years ago, a German scholar claimed to have made an earth-shaking discovery when he published what he called the Diaries of Adolph Hitler. The London Times published excerpts of the diary, describing it as the most sensational story of the century. A few months later, it was conclusively proven that the diary was fake and was written by anonymous authors. The major argument advanced to disprove the book was that no one knew about it, not even the closest of Hitler's supporters. Above all, he never approved it or delivered it to anyone.
If the book or scriptures attributed to an individual as an author or a source of narration is compiled and verified in the lifetime of a narrator or the author, then its authenticity can be taken on face value. Otherwise, doubt will remain in the minds of readers regarding the true origin of the book or of the contents of the book.
Among all the religious books that exist today, the Quran is the only one that has the privilege of being compiled and approved by the Prophet who received it. Azvesta, the book of Zoroastrian, was compiled 1,500 years after the death of its author. Hindu Vedas were written hundreds of years after the death of sages who were described as the authors. The Ramayana was orally transmitted until it was written down 1,600 hundreds of years after the event. The Bhagvad Gita was in the memories of people for hundreds of years before it was committed to writing. The Old Testament was compiled by more than 40 authors. A cursory look at some basic facts suggests that it took a while for the Bible to appear as a final version of scriptures.
The Bible contains 66 books, divided among the Old and New Testaments. However, some Christian denominations believe that it has 73 chapters. Over 40 different authors from all walks of life wrote the Bible: shepherds, farmers, tent-makers, physicians, fishermen, priests, philosophers and kings. Prophet Moses reportedly wrote the first five books of the Bible, referred to as the Pentateuch; the foundation of the Bible. The Apostle Paul wrote 14 books (over half) of the New Testament. It took almost 1500 years to complete the scriptures. The Bible was written over a period of 1,500 years, from around 1,450 B.C. (the time of Moses) to about 100 A.D. Many scholars agree that Job is the oldest book in the Bible, written by an unknown Israelite about 1,500 B.C. Others hold that the Pentateuch (the first five books of the Bible) are the oldest books in the Bible, written between 1,446 and 1,406 B.C. The book of Malachi, was written in about 400 B.C.
The Book of Revelation is the youngest book of the New Testament, written about 95 A.D. The Bible was written in three languages: Hebrew, Aramaic, and Koine Greek. The entire New Testament as we know it today was accepted in the year 375 A.D. The Old Testament had previously been accepted as a sacred text long before the advent of Christ. The oldest almost-complete manuscript of the Bible now in existence is the Codex Vaticanus, which dates from the first half of the fourth century. It is located in the library of the Vatican in Rome. Older fragments of the Bible do exist, however -- a tiny scrap of the Gospel of John was found in Egypt, dating back to the beginning of the second century. (It is currently in the Rayland's Library in Manchester, England.) These facts about the Bible provide an authentic proof of its written format several hundred years after the departure of their authors.
On the other hand, the Quran is the only divine scripture that was compiled during the lifetime of the Prophet who, according to the Quran, received it. There were only three who knew the message of the Quran before it was pronounced to the people: God, angel Gabriel and Prophet Muhammad. In the historically accepted Muslim sources, angel Gabriel was the link between the Divine and the Prophet. The Prophet would receive the revelation and repeat it back to the Angel, who would commit it to his memory and then pronounce it to the people and instruct them to write it down, since he was unable to read or write himself.
From the day he received the first revelation until he departed, all Prophet Muhammad received in revelation was pronounced to the People who committed it to their memories and also wrote on the available writing material. By the time the Prophet departed, the Quran was already written in the form of a book from cover to cover. The Prophet is reported to have approved the Quran after listening to it from men and women who had memorized it and written it. A copy of this Quran was with his wife Hafsa bint Omar. Consequently, this was used as the master copy when duplications were made during the time of Caliphs Abu Bakr, Omar, Uthman and Ali. (See chapter on the Quran in the Sahih Bukhari and Sahih Muslim).
Some Muslim accounts of the history of the compilation as mentioned in Sahih Bukhari and Muslim provide the information that the Quran was compiled in the form and format we see today, at the time of Caliphs Abu Bakr and Uthman. In fact, one such account says that when Omar asked the first caliph to commission the compilation of the Quran, he refused saying why would he do something that the Prophet did not do. (Sahih Bukhari) Similarly, another account claims that the third Caliph Uthman appointed a commission of six people to compile the Quran as there were several contradictory copies of the Quran present in different parts of the world.
These two accounts require closer examination on the basis of several other narrations that are mentioned in several books of hadith. First, the two accounts never say that the Prophet didn't compile the Quran. Second, the two accounts do not refer to other narrations in the books of hadith including the Bukhari and Muslim that conclusively prove that the entire Quran as is present today, was compiled at the time of the Prophet. What is often confused in these narrations is the difference between
compilation and copying. While the Quran was compiled at the time of the Prophet, the mass scale copying of the Quran began officially at the time of Caliph Abu Bakr. During the lifetime of the Quran, several of his companions had complete sets of the Quranic verses, which they had arranged according to their reading schedule with their own notes. Some were complete and others were not.
However, it was at the time of Caliph Abu Bakr that an official copy of the Quran was made from the master that was with Hafsa bint Omar. Most books of hadith mention that those who were responsible for copying the Quran from the master returned the original to Hafsa after ensuring the authenticity of the latest duplicated scriptures. Several early Muslim historians and writers even tried to count the number of copies of the Quran that were distributed to different parts of the world where Islam had reached. For instance, according to Ibn Hazm, a famous Muslim scholar, there were several hundred copies of the Quran circulating in different parts of the world at the time of second Caliph Umar. It is possible that several people may have made copies from the copies during that time. Hence when the third Caliph Uthman asked a group of Quran scholars to review the existing copies of the scriptures, it is not surprising that he may have found discrepancies. Consequently, he asked people to destroy the inauthentic copies that were in circulation, and use the ones that matched the original Quran.
Thus the Quran remains the only scripture that was compiled during the lifetime of a Prophet who had received it directly from the divine source. It is this fact that many scholars seek to challenge. Skeptical about the divine origin of the Quran, they resist the premise that God spoke to humanity through His chosen people and sent His trusted angel to communicate His message to His messengers including the last of the messengers, Prophet Muhammad.
They don't accept it because this cannot be proved empirically. They cannot empirically verify the location of God and Angel Gabriel. Hence they argue that the whole story about the origins Quran is fabricated. But the attack on the Quran does not come only from secularists or empiricists. It also comes from Christian and Jewish scholars whose religions depend on the notion of the existence of God and His revealed message to His chosen messengers. While they acknowledge the divine origin of the Old and New Testaments, they are not willing to grant the Quran the same status. Suffice it to say that their argument is neither religious, nor historical, nor academic. It can best be described as biased and fabricated.
What they don't realize is that if the divine origin of the Quran and the authenticity of its message are questioned and refuted, then the very origins of their own religions are in question.
Dr. Aslam Abdullah is the Editor of the Minaret magazine which is a monthly publication from Los Angeles, California. This article is based on his upcoming book on the History of the Compilation of the Quran.
Dont even try to ignore the facts and destort them who you are supposed to be educated and academic scholars.
To some extent the Quran can prove to have devine verses unlike the other scriptures. "new knowledge"
as the Quran calls it, otherwise known as science
shows authenticity as well as the existence of Allah. When people think of God, they think of Chrisianity, yet this religion has not succeeded in proving God exists, but Islam through the Quran has. This is because it is the word of God(authenticity). Only God can prove he exists.
"reason is the most beautiful thing Allah created"
I thought the main purpose of this article is to refute the claim that Quran did not revealed in Arabic. this article didn't write a single sentence to refute this.
If some one does not know what he is writing, HE SHOULD NOT WRITE at the first place. If we keep writing worthless document like this people will be more skeptical. Please By Allah, if u think u don't have any scientific/historical evidence to refute their claim, please don't write.
And no where in this article did I see an actual refutation of evidence presented; the author seems to have merely regurgitated the same old "Bible was compiled this way", "Quran was compiled that way" argument. That's all I ever seem to see from Muslims. Bring some factual, historical, verifiable, archaelogical evidence for SOMETHING. Not just rehearsed and overused arguments that are based upon little to no facts.
These are afterall, the descendents of the crusaders we're talking about here. Muslims need to understand that ignoring the lies will not solve the problem. There must be an aggressive pro-active campaign against such forces. A good place to start would be the Muslim nations themselves, where ALL evangelical Christians must be expelled for their covert activites as well as the venom from their corpulent preachers against Islam, which have contributed directly to attacks on Muslim and immigrant populations in the West. I have yet to read ONE Muslim publication of any sort denouncing Moses or Christ....this is a far cry from most Christians and Jews who are non-practicing and have reduced their faith to nothing more than a set of watered down rituals.
Sounds like petty jealously and hatred to me.
[Yaa-Seen 36:7] Undoubtedly, it (their disbelief) has proved true for most of them, so they will not believe.
[Yaa-Seen 36:8] We have indeed put shackles around their necks reaching up to the chins, so they remain facing upwards.
[Yaa-Seen 36:9] And We have set a wall before them and a wall behind them, and covered the top - so they are unable to see anything.
[Yaa-Seen 36:10] And it is the same for them, whether you warn them or do not warn them - they will not believe.
[Yaa-Seen 36:11] You warn only him who follows the advice and fears the Most Gracious without seeing; therefore give him glad tidings of forgiveness and an honourable reward.
article fascinating, and at times revealing. He is
making a point that many of often dare not. He is
arguing based on his sources that the notion that
the Quran was compiled at the time of the first or
second Caliph is not valid. This is a monumental
conclusion, because until now we have been reading
that it was either Caliph Abu Bakr or Caliph Osman
who supervised the copiiation of the Quran. His
logic that only the Prophet can verify and approve
the final copy of the Quran is very valid and
I feel that non-Muslims often refer to our own
literature to attack us. Probably, this article is
reading our sources critically and analyzing facts
in the light of the Quranic logic. I cannot wait
for the publication of his book. May Allah rewar
some of the questions. I will wait until the end
of the week as I beleive that the article will be
there for a few more days.
A later article on the webpage responds to the Newsweek piece more effectively. I hope in the forthcoming book the author will substantiate his ckaims with stronger documentation.
Yours is an excellent defense based on truth. I really don't
understand how people can do such attacks to other people
beliefs when theirs is at stake. I was raised catholic, but
have learnt about other religions since 10. That is why I feel
sorry for those pseudo-scientists who do not understand
thet they do not hold the entire Truth. Part of the Western
nature, I guess.
I really appreciate the respect you demonstrated in your
article to Judeo-cristian beliefs. That says a bid deal about
your professionalism and respect.
Thanks for your illuminating article.
No surprise that Islam is the fastest growing religion after all these attempts to undermine!
God bless you all and may Allah guide us to he right bath. Amin
Thanks for the education.
 Afterward he (Jesus) appeared to the eleven themselves as they sat at table; and he upbraided them for their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they had not believed those who saw him after he had risen.
 And he said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to the whole creation.
 He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.
 And these signs will accompany those who believe: in my name they will cast out demons; they will speak in new tongues;
 they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly thing, it will not hurt them; they will lay their hands on the sick, and they will recover."
Based on the above criteria, can anybody find a single Christian in the whole world? Or was there any in the past 2000 years? It's very shameful that some people choose to critisize Al-Quran while maintaining the authenticity of their Bible. Yet they don't have any answer for the verses like these ones and there are many other contradictions in the Bible
Also, you might ask "Christian apologists" (antagonists) whether or not two homosexual members of the clergy can absolve themselves of sexual transgression. Is that what is meant by binding authority? Thanks (I think) - but no thanks. I will do it my own way. (May Allah forgive me.)
To disciples of the Christ - have you had enough yet? I suggest that you keep the pipe organ and your favorite hymns - but perhaps consider rewriting some of the lyrics. You might be surprised to discover the extent to which the lyrics were previously revised. (Peace be with you.)
The Most Merciful has willed that our faith be challenged. Alhamdulillah! Subhanallah!
I hoping u will read this article. Gain more information and understanding about Al Quran. Then make comparison to the BIBLE. No religion restrict his follower to gain more knowledge about others -(Did i'm right?). Most of the Muslim already done this but most of nonMuslim didnt. Think about it..........
Thank you, sir, for your response to the Newsweek
article. I must say that I wish it was in our power to
scientifically and empirically refute those who wish to
challenge the authenticity of the Quran. If it is indeed in
our power, I implore you, in concert with dedicated
Islamic scholars, to let loose a righteous, cogent,
written and verbal counterattack and submit it to
Newsweek. If they don't print it, we should go on the
moraloffensive worldwide, questionning the journalistic
integrity of Newsweek.
The author of the Newswee
May Allah guide us all.
They also are afraid of the fact that Islam is fastest growing religion in the U.S. and in the World. It scares the hell out them. Muslims do not need to worry about it. They have to be proactive and work hard. The seeds of Islam have been sown in the west. These people who are making up lies against the Quran.... their son and daughters will change their fathers way of life and teach them what exaclty the Quran is, as the kids of Mecca changed their fathers' way of life and taught them what really the Koran contains. Muslims just need to work hard and not be tempted by the dark forces of the West.
Remember the Great Satan will be on the loose until the day of Judgement!!! And Many in the west have been clearly beem possesseed by him. Such negative claims about Quran and Islam should also be a test of faith for MUSLIMS. Remember!!! no free lunch; you will always be tested.
Should we let them do what they wanted to do to confuse the doubtfuls. YES....to sort out the true believers.
Will those kinds of articles help Islam to bloom. YES, because majority people are honest inside, and they'll find out the truth.. so, in fact the article stimulates curiousity ... people will dig deeper into Islam and Al Qur'an...
Don't worry too much..,Allah s.w.t is the one to defend His Book.
i wish everyone could understand how beautiful God is and that these self-important imperialists would recognize that the same force that drives them to try and disprove a tradition with 1400 years of devotion to God and the Prophet Muhammad (UHBP)is the same imperialistic force that motivates president bush to try and impose his will upon the people of Iraq.
What does it matter, in reality their opinion does not change the facts of the Qu'ran. Because the Qu'ran is not just a book. It is a message from Allah put in the form of a book so that we may understand. The Qu'ran in fact is the very creation around us, we are in fact established or created on the pattern of the Qu'Ran. So for the record those who refer to the book and try to attack are throwing rocks into space. The patterns that were revealed into the book form of the Qu'ran were around man yet unknown to man. While Europe content that the Earth was flat, unaware of that the planets (more than one planet) was actually floating and orbiting around the sun. While they were making up facts that we were the center of and only planet of the universe. We have a book that yearns and begs for us to test it. In truth they do not have an argument and Allah has said this and I am paraphasing it. For them to bring their best and challenge and they will not find fault in it and let them try again and they will not find fault. But those who try will have a reward paid to them.
So let them say what they will it is what has been promised and as Allah a directed let us sit and wait for TRUTH destroys falsehoods. There are many sciences or facts in the Qu'Ran that are only just now being confirmed by man's technology. The time I sent writing this was to much, so let us not waste our energy but seek to follow the Guidance that we have. Do not invest your emotions in this matter for it is what Allah and his Messenger swas has promised us. Let us be about working for change and to improve the condition of the worlds that we live in. This is a distraction to rouse up negative emotions yet it is part of the whole plan. And verily Allah is the best of Planners. Let us argue in the best way through our work and follow the guidance and speak not ill of another's faith lest they should speak against Allah and wrong themselves.
As Saalamu Alaikum
Million thanks to Dr. Aslam regarding this article. Its really GOOD article on the correct time.
"Our Lord! bestow on us Mercy from Thyself, and dispose of our affair for us in the right way!"
May ALLAH bless u
1) The Quran & the Bible in the light of science
2) Is the Qur'an God's word?
It is really ironic that Muslims have been on the defensive from Christian attacks for centuries. If any westerner was to compare the number of times Muslims were slaughtered, Muslim lands attacked by Christians and vice versa, they would be shocked to find out that most attacks were initiated by their fellow Christians, most massacres were done by their fellow countrymen, yet they were taught that the opposite was true. The people responsible for the extinction of a great deal of tribes were Christians, yet they accuse the Muslims of being the foremost aggressors; the evidence against this charge is plain and clear.
It is also worth pointing out that when Muslims challenge the discrepancies in the Bible they do not invent lies against this book or its authors, but make concise and logical points to show the major contradictions of the teachings, while non-Muslims mainly invent outrageous lies against the Qur'an. I imagine the reason is they themselves are ignorant of Islam and go by hear say from other ignorant Westerners, otherwise it doesn't make sense why they would write and publish such outrageous fabrications. I believe another reason is that they rely on their audiences' ignorance and readiness to accept any charge against Islam.
"We indeed have sent down the Qur'an and We shall indeed guard it(from all curruptions)" Therefore the two sides: those who believe they should react when the Quran is challenged, and those who don't, are both right. Because Allah may use the believers to guard this noble scripture as He has done with the Sahabas that memorised the Quran over and over. And also with the type of the author of this article.
The Qur'an was revealed in Aramaic? This is the same mistake they make(that makes them laughing stocks) when they imply, as Allah told us in the Qur'an, that Moses and Abraham were Jews or Christians. They will never stop making mockery of their scriptures cos they don't believe in them in the first place. They are high bent on bringing back the paganism of the old Roman Empire to be the true religion. But let me assure them that they can try but the final decision is with Allah(SAW).
Quite a number of the People of the Book wish they could Turn you (people) back to infidelity after ye have believed, from selfish envy, after the Truth hath become Manifest unto them: But forgive and overlook, Till Allah accomplish His purpose; for Allah Hath power over all things.
174. Those who conceal Allah's revelations in the Book, and purchase for them a miserable profit,- they swallow into themselves naught but Fire; Allah will not address them on the Day of Resurrection. Nor purify them: Grievous will be their penalty.
175. They are the ones who buy Error in place of Guidance and Torment in place of Forgiveness. Ah! what boldness (They show) for the Fire!
176. (Their doom is) because Allah sent down the Book in truth but those who seek causes of dispute in the Book are in a schism Far (from the purpose).
Do not seek causes of dispute because of your lack of knowledge of the Qur'ans origins, it is better for a person if he'she wants to have a purpose in Allah's plans.
I see it like this, people like "Luxenberg" and Newsweek magazine try to invalidate the Qur'an because the USA is a secular state that does not follow the commandments of God it follows the laws of man, natural law and positive law, man made laws...therefore any threat, to their Godless nation, such as Islam and it's teachings in the Qur'an and Hadiths, is an obstacle that needs to be challenged in order to maintain the dominance of the federal republic known as the United States government. Both Judaism and Christianity are seen as old ways by many modernists within the Untied States, most of them aren't practicing their faith or go to Church, Synagogue regularly... and so since Islam is the only ONE of the 3 monotheistic religions that is one of the largest and originates from Prophet Abraham (AS), the federal republic called the USA Government and it's citizens who follow it must do what they can to combat the threat that Islam poses to them, which is, Believe there is no God but Allah, and that Muhammad (SAAW) is the final Prophet from Allah.
It's all okay though, The Qur'an is so high and so great, that even non-Muslims such as Luxenberg and the Newsweek staff who assisted in publishing the article, see it's greatness...that is why they TRY to challenge it, but they can't even do that, they have to make up lies like they did with Iraq, and try to make everyone believe it (eg. Weapons of Mass Destruction, Uranium from Niger)...
The Arabic of the Qur'an is the greatest form of Arabic ever written...how could it be memorized in Arabic by thousands of people during Prophet's life in Arabic and originate from Aramaic? How childish of Newsweek to display such ignorance....