Deuteronomy Dissection

Deuteronomy Dissection
Two Short, Sound, Simple Proofs that Muhammad Was God’s Prophet

 

Question Mark

 

This essay is intended to serve as a rebuttal to David Woods’ “Deuteronomy Deductions.” Wood in his “Deuteronomy Deductions” poses seven questions to Muslims; I hope that reader would learn all the answers herein explicitly. Those questions which needed detailed analysis have been dealt with care, so looking forward for an unbiased assay from readers.

What is it all about

Jesus, peace be upon him, was a true apostles of Allah, however, because Christendom as a whole relies heavily on confusing concept that Jesus (peace be upon him) is their ultimate savior, redeemer and God – constraints them into a shell from where anyone speaking against this man-made notion would be rendered as a ‘fabricator’ or simply a false prophet. No wonder, no sooner did Moses, peace be upon him, a revered figure of the Bible, prophesied Mohammad’s prophet hood in Deuteronomy 18:18 than David, a Christian polemic, sought to refute Moses, peace be upon him.

Defense not required

 

In Deuteronomy 18:20 two conditions for the bona-fide of any candidate claiming messenger hood is provided:

1. He should not speak anything out of his whims and if he does then he is not God’s true prophet: “But the prophet who speaks a word presumptuously in My name which I have not commanded him to speak…that prophet shall die.”

2. The candidate should not speak in the name of false gods: “…or which he speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.”

Christian polemic, out of his apprehensions goes on to write stodgy passages to “defend” the aforementioned two conditions. So, let me mollify him that I have no qualms in the premises and criterions therein. Nevertheless, I would like to use the same argument, conversely, that is, if Mohammad, peace be upon him, passes above two premises and criterions or in other words, if he did not forge any lie or something unauthorized or/ and if he did not speak in the name of false gods, then he ought to fit Deuteronomy 18:18 and be ‘that’ prophet heralded by Moses and Jesus, peace be on both mighty messengers of Allah.

This logical argument is termed as Modus Ponens, as the Christian apologist educates us in his “Deuteronomy Deductions”. Furthermore, I would again use the same ‘logic and argument’ (remember A1, A2 and B1, B2 of his article!) as propounded by him to prove that there is somebody else filtered out as false prophet by Deuteronomy 18:20 test. Someone from New Testament! Thus, looking forward for an unjaundiced assay.

 

Mortal’s word given a degree above Creator’s word

 

In his quest to disprove Mohammad’s (peace be upon him) veracity; David corroborates condition (1.) by quoting History of Al-Tabari, which reads:

“I have fabricated things against God and have imputed to Him words which He has not spoken.”

 

The rebuttal

 

In Islamic theology, if some mortal’s, be Muslim or otherwise, scholar or otherwise, personal opinion or writing clashes with God’s word then the former’s opinion or writing is evaluated naught. For humans have frailties; God does not. So, with this prerequisite in mind we read in The Holy Quran 69:44-47:

And if the messenger were to invent any sayings in Our name, We should certainly seize him by his right hand And We should certainly then cut off the artery of his heart Nor could any of you withhold him (from Our wrath).”

Here, Allah provides Mohammad’s (peace be upon him) bona-fide by grounding His divine argument on the severity of consequential punishment if Mohammad, His chosen man, were to fabricate things on Him or impute words to Him.

Immediate deductions:

 

Immediately, two deductions can be deduced. They are as follows:

1. “…Seizure by his right hand…”
2. “Cutting of the Artery (vital sign)”

 

1. Seizure by right hand: In Arabic tradition and colloquial, right hand symbolized power and therefore, metaphorically, to seize someone by his right hand meant to subjugate or to stop ones progress or to fetter etc. Thus, if Mohammad, peace be upon him, would have imputed anything false or lie on Allah then he would have been subjugated, however contrastingly, we find in history that not only did he coup Mecca, a haven of his arch-enemies, but he also conquered the whole world. So, to sum up, “he was not seized by his right hand” or he did not impute anything unauthorized on Allah.

2. Cutting off of the Aorta: This consequential punishment for ill attribution is so stringent and clear cut that I wonder how Wood eluded it. We know, even David knows, that Mohammad, peace be upon him, lived for more than 60 years of his life and had a natural death or put in other words his artery was not slit open, consequently, it is obvious that Mohammad did not forge any lie on Almighty.

Thus, it can be easily verified that Mohammad (peace be upon him) did not impute anything fabricated upon God – Almighty. And therefore, he easily passes the first premise of Deuteronomy 18:20.

What about condition (2.) of Deuteronomy 18:20?

 

Let me once again reproduce condition 2. of Deuteronomy 18:20, it says, that if a prophet speaks in the name of false gods then he should die. “…or which he speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.”

David tries to fit Mohammad above by quoting again from History of Al-Tabari, again (I exhort readers to kindly read the status of History of Al-Tabari in Islamic Theology):

“Then God revealed:
By the Star when it sets, your comrade does not err, nor is he deceived; nor does he speak out of (his own) desire . . .
and when he came to the words:
Have you thought upon al-Lat and al-‘Uzza and Manat, the third, the other?
Satan cast on his tongue, because of his inner debates and what he desired to bring to his people, the words:
These are the high-flying cranes; verily their intercession is accepted with approval. (Al-Tabari, p. 108)”

 

The refutation

 

The argument is so weak that it can be refuted by two approaches, namely, concordant and analytical. Let David Wood and others choose their flavor.

  1. Analytical Approach: The rendering provided by David goes head on against myriad of Quranic verses repudiating intercession through false gods, to mention a few are: 11:18, 6:51,70, (etc):

“They serve, besides Allah, things that hurt them not nor profit them, and they say: “These are our intercessors with Allah.” Say: “Do ye indeed inform Allah of something He knows not, in the heavens or on earth?- Glory to Him! and far is He above the partners they ascribe (to Him)!”

“Give this warning to those in whose (hearts) is the fear that they will be brought (to judgment) before their Lord: except for Him they will have no protector NOR INTERCESSOR: that they may guard (against evil).

“Leave alone those who take their religion to be mere play and amusement, and are deceived by the life of this world. But proclaim (to them) this (truth): that every soul delivers itself to ruin by its own acts: it will find for itself NO protector or intercessor except Allah: if it offered every ransom, (or reparation), none will be accepted: such is (the end of) those who deliver themselves to ruin by their own acts: they will have for drink (only) boiling water, and for punishment, one most grievous: for they persisted in rejecting Allah.”

 In the wake of above verse we can easily feel that there is something ‘fishy’ in Tabari’s rendering. So, let me produce an excerpt on the same issue but with slightly different rendering from more reliable source, nevertheless, creating a difference of chalk and cheese. But before that, let us look at some scholarly work about the case at hand.

A1. Maulana Hakkani in his Tafseer Hakkani, writes:
Strong proofs establishes that the way this incident has been touted is absolutely false.”(Hakkani 5/209-210, Bold and Italics emphasize ours)

 

A2.  Famous exegete, Ibn Hajar (Note: Wood has used Ibn Hajar Asqalani as an authority) expounds in the exegesis of Sahih Bukhari that “there are traces of truth in this incident but there had been short comings in its narration; for this reason the meaning of something has changed into something else! (Hadeeth –ut- Tafseer, 295, in Quran Majid translated by Sanaullah Amritsari. Bold and Italics emphasize ours)
Thus, one would realize from the comments of aforementioned scholars that there is for sure something ‘fishy’ in History of Al-Tabari rendering as produced by Christian polemic.

What is the mist dispelling rendering then?:

 

We read in Hadith – ut – Tafseer, Jami- ul- Bayan, 295:

“Once Prophet was reciting Surah Najm. When he recited “wa- manaa- tassli- sa- tal- ukhra” but people heard “tilka- gharanikul ula…(which means three idols will intercess).

Notice the subtle difference of Prophet reciting something and diseased ears of mischievous people hearing something totally different! In other words it was not prophet uttering those words but the diseased ears of ungodly people hearing them.

Allah mentions about such people in Quran 22:53, “That He may make the suggestions thrown in by Satan, but a trial for those in whose hears is a disease and who are hardened of heart: verily the wrong-doers are in schism far(from the truth).”

 

  1. B.     Discordant Approach:

            In Qur’an 22:52 we read,

 

Never did We send a messenger or a prophet before thee, but, when he framed a desire, Satan threw some (vanity) into his desire: but Allah will cancel anything (vain) that Satan throws in, and Allah will confirm (and establish) His Signs: for Allah is full of Knowledge and Wisdom”

 

 Allah (SWT) mentions that He “cancels” whatever Satan casts. One is compelled to think that if Allah (SWT) annuls then how come Mohammad (peace be upon him) uttered the alleged satanic verses. This again begs question to the authenticity of Tabari statement which Wood quotes.

 

On the contrary, Qur’an 22:52 disproves Wood’s argument simply because Allah (SWT) has annulled whatever satan tried to throw in, not only that, Allah (SWT) further established His communications, revelations thereby leaving no space for any satanic verses to be spoken out, therefore, Mohammad (peace be upon him) never spoke out any so called “satanic verses” based on Qur’an 22:52. (Read more on this in the reply to David’s sixth query below).

 

Christians ask Muslims reply

 

David Wood has enquired seven questions of Muslims. All his questions are answered in this paper. Nevertheless, a few questions out of the seven needed special attention, which are dealt in detail hereunder:
He asks,
First, they must provide some reasonable explanation as to the story’s origin (e.g. they must make a plausible case that the story was invented by pagans, Jews, or Christians).”

 

The reply to follow is, in effect, response to fifth question, also.
In the first place, what difference does it make whether the story was invented by a Pagans or Jews or Christians or a Hypocrites (why avoid them) or all four colluded to invent one. The pith of the matter is that Mohammad, peace be upon him, was blamed of something but was rightly, vindicated by God’s own testimonial. (Refer: The Holy Quran 69:44-47). But because it has been enquired, we must reply.
(Reply to Fifth Question begins from here)
“Once the holy prophet suddenly recited “Surah – Najm” (Chapter 41 – The Star) among multitudes of Pagans including some Pagan notables at the sacred sanctuary. No wonder, when the awe-inspiring Words of Allah descended unawares upon them they immediately got stunned by them. It was the first time for them to be shocked by the truthful Revelation. It had formerly been favorite trick of those people who wished to dishonor Revelation, not only not to listen to it themselves but also to talk loudly and insolently when it was being read, so that even the true listeners may not be able to hear. They used to think that they were drowning the Voice of Allah: “Listen not to this Quran and make noise in the midst of its (recitation) that you may overcome.” (Qur’an 41:26).
When the unspeakably fascinating Words of Allah came into direct contact with their hearts, they were entranced and got oblivious of the materialistic world around them and were caught in a state of full attentiveness to the Divine Words to such an extent that when the Prophet, peace be upon him, reached the stormy heart – beating ending: “So fall you down in prostration to Allah and worship Him (Alone).” (53:62)
But natural, the idolaters, unconsciously and with full compliance, prostrated themselves in absolute God – fearing and stainless devotion. It was in fact the wonderful moment of the Truth that cleaved through the obdurate souls of the haughty and the attitude of the scoffers. Their co – polytheists who had not been present on the scene reproached and blamed them severely; consequently they began to fabricate lies and calumniate the Prophet, peace be upon him alleging that he had attached to their idols great veneration and ascribed to them the power of desirable intercession. All of these were desperate attempts made to establish an excusable justification for their prostrating themselves with the Prophet, peace be upon him, on that day.

Thus we see that it was the hate and spite amongst the non – prostrating pagans which led them to promulgate the rumor of prophet (peace be upon him) revealing verses in support of their gods.”  (Ar-Raheeq Al-Makhtum By Saiful Rahman al-Mubarakpuri. Pg 42-43)

 

He asks again,
Second, they must explain why Muslims, who had every reason to reject such a story, passed it on as if it were true (instead of exposing it as a fabrication.”(Emphasis added)

I am sorry but the above question clearly elicits poor and vicious exegesis. Because Ibn Jarir Al-Tabari (Author of History of Al-Tabari) never transmitted anything of his book ‘as if it were truth’ infact it is the other way round.

The author himself doubts the authenticity of his work so much so that he writes (no wonder David did not read it lest this question would not have cropped up) on the introduction page of his book, History of Al-Tabari:
“ Let him who examines this book of mine know that I have relied, as regards everything I mention therein which I stipulate to be described by me, solely upon what has been transmitted to me by way of reports which I cite therein and traditions which I ascribe to their narrators, to the exclusion of what may be apprehended by rational argument or deduced by the human mind, except in very few cases. This is because knowledge of the reports of men of the past and of contemporaneous views of men of the present do not reach the one who has not witnessed them nor lived in their times except through the accounts of reporters and the transmission of transmitters, to the exclusion of rational deduction and mental inference. Hence if I mention in this book a report about some men of the past, which the reader of listener finds objectionable or worthy of censure because he can see no aspect of truth nor any factual substance therein, let him know that this is not to be attributed to us but to those who transmitted it to us and we have merely passed this on as it has been passed on to us.. (Italics and Bold emphasize ours)

Thus, Al-Tabari only ingeniously related these accounts as he received them and inscribed them in their totality. Then, can we hold Al-Tabari liable of transmitting it as a fact or truth? No, of course not, rather he transmitted it doubtfully and objectionably leaving the burden of examination for the readers.

Christian asks for the third time,

Third, they must show that Ibn Ishaq, Wakidi, Ibn Sa’d, al-Tabari, Ibn Abi Hatim, Ibn al-Mundhir, Ibn Mardauyah, Musa ibn ‘Uqba, and Abu Ma’shar were sloppy historians (so amazingly sloppy that they included false stories about Muhammad that called his prophethood into question).

 

Although there is nothing much left for me to write but to direct the questionnaire to above response (response to second question), however, I would like to add a rhetoric question to better understanding of the Christian polemist, “Was St. Barnabas (biblically, “One who encourages”) also a ‘sloppy’ Historian?, Did not he come up with a monumental work, “Gospel of Barnabas”, with a lot of sloppiness in it? Why did the ‘One who encourages’ discouraged Christians to the point of jeopardizing idiosyncratic Christian tenets.” Of surety, St. Barnabas should top the charts in terms of ‘sloppiness’. By the way he is the same St. Barnabas whose compassion for Christianity is unquestionable, as he, “sold a field he owned, brought the money, and handed it over to the apostles.”(Acts 4:37, TEV. Italics and Bold emphasize ours).


Furthermore, Acts 11:24(TEV), embarrasses everyone anyone who points finger to the integrity of St. Barnabas, “Barnabas was a good man, full of the Holy Spirit and faith, and many people were brought to the lord.”

Barnabas was no less than an apostle: “We agreed that Barnabas and I would work among the Gentiles and they among the Jews.”(Gal 2:9 TEV). Can you consider St. Barnabas – an apostle; as a ‘sloppy’ apostle?

His fifth question (His fourth question has been answered in so many words in the refutations above),

“Fifth, they must explain why al-Bukhari, Islam’s most trusted authority, confirms certain details of the story that only make sense if Muhammad really did deliver the Satanic Verses. According to Bukhari, The Prophet performed a prostration when he finished reciting Surat an-Najm [Surah 53], and all the Muslims and Al-Mushrikun (polytheists, pagans, idolaters, and disbelievers in the Oneness of Allah and in His Messenger Muhammad) and jinn and human beings prostrated along with him. (4862)”


I would request the questionnaire to kindly guide himself to the response of the first question. He ought to find this answer there. This question is explicitly answered there.

His most absurd question, the sixth one, namely,

“Sixth, Muslims must account for Surah 22:52, which, again, declares that all God’s prophets received revelations from Satan—a verse so preposterous that it could only have been offered to the Muslim community as an absurd explanation for something like the Satanic Verses.”


Before I reply let me quote The Holy Quran 22:52:

“Never did We send A messenger or a prophet Before thee, but, when he Framed a desire, Satan Threw some (vanity) Into his desire: but Allah will cancel anything (vain) That Satan throws in, And Allah will confirm (And establish) His Signs: For Allah is full of knowledge And wisdom:..”
Firstly, the verse says that whenever a prophet conceived any DESIRE (or a thought or a wish), Satan threw some thing vain INTO HIS DESIRE. As clear as that – the verse does not talk about speaking out revelations. Thus, we ask, “What made Wood write, “God’s prophets received revelations from Satan”? Is desiring, contemplating, thinking, wishing about something similar to receiving revelations from Satan and promulgating it out?!

Thus, Wood needs to prove from Qur’an 22:52 that all earlier prophets received revelations from Satan; because the verse, in all stretch of English language, does not mean even faintly allude to it.

Secondly, even if we agree for the sake of argument that Mohammad (peace be upon him) received, “revelations from Satan” (although Qur’an 22:52 says Mohammad (peace be upon him) received “vanity in to desires” which is not “satanic revelations”) yet Allah (SWT), according to Qur’an 22:52, will cancel and expunge anything “satanic” and  “confirm His Signs (revelations).  

 

Thirdly, continuing on the above argument, David should reconcile that because Qur’an 22:52 states that Allah (SWT) cancels any “satanic revelations” thrown in – then how would Mohammad (peace be upon him) recite something which has been cancelled into his desires not just that but pure godly revelations firmly confirmed and established. Amazing scenario!, “…seeing they see not, hearing they hear not, neither do they understand.”

 

His seventh question:

“Seventh, they must show non-Muslims why we should reject all the available evidence and believe that Muhammad was spiritually reliable, when, as all informed Muslims will admit, Muhammad was the victim of black magic (a spell cast by a Jewish magician) and, at one point, was convinced that he was demon-possessed. Put differently, if the Prophet of Islam could mistakenly believe that he was demon-possessed, and was susceptible to spiritual attacks (such as black magic), why shouldn’t we believe that he could fall prey to revelations from Satan?”

 

My entire refutation revolves round this query as to the “evidence” purported by Wood is no evidence. The sources from where the citations have been adduced themselves disown their excerpts as “proofs”. Next, to say because once Mohammad, peace be upon him, was attacked (black magic) and then to infer that he will promulgate Satanic revelations after receiving them is far-fetched and based on wild pre-suppositions. It is as wild a presumption as to say, “If Lot, a veritable Prophet of Judaism and Christianity (and Islam excluding Biblical portrayal) could get drunk then why could not he have delivered irrational statements as Divine revelations in his inebriation.” (Refer: HOLY Bible, Genesis 19: 33-35, for incest and bacchanalian orgies comprising of ‘Father and Daughters’).

If this argument does not satiate then at least Mohammad, peace be upon him, did not manufacture Idols like Biblical Aaron, an apostle of God, for his multitudes to defile themselves with.

Turning tables over

 

If the yardstick to check the veracity of any candidate touting to be prophet is, quoting David Wood of his deductions of Deuteronomy 18:20,

“Here we have two criteria for spotting a false prophet: (1) delivering a revelation which God has not “commanded him to speak,” and (2) speaking “in the name of other gods.” (Emphasis added)” (Bold emphasize ours)

AND YET AGAIN, he provides the same criterion:

“Argument B—false revelations and false prophets
B1. If a person delivers a revelation that doesn’t come from God, that person is a false prophet. (Emphasis added)

B2. Muhammad delivered a revelation that didn’t come from God.
——————————————————
B3. Therefore, Muhammad was a false prophet.”

Therefore, to paraphrase, a veritable Prophet should not speak anything which has not been authorized/endorsed or “commanded” by God to him. That is to say, if the candidate speaks out of his own whims then that Prophet is a false prophet and “he should die”. Now, with this concept in the background let us analyze ‘Apostle Paul’.

It is reported of Paul as saying:

“I speak not by commandment, but I am testing the sincerity of your love by the diligence of others.”(The Open Bible: 2 Corinthians 8:8, NKJV. Bold emphasize ours)

Here, Paul did not had any specific “command” from Almighty, nevertheless, embarrassingly he was transmuting his personal opinions as spiritual decrees.

OR

“Now, concerning what you wrote about unmarried people: I do not have a command from the Lord, but I give my opinion …” (Holy Bible: 1 Corinthians 7:25, Today’s English Version. Bold emphasize ours)

“Now concerning virgins: I have no commandment from the Lord; yet I give judgment …” (The Open Bible: 1 Corinthians 7:25, NKJV. Bold emphasize ours)

It does not require any stodgy exegesis here that Paul was using his own whims; he admittedly, did not had any command from Higher authority, contrary to that, he was presumptuously basing his judgments upon his own personal feelings. Therefore, violating the aforementioned premise that if he (purported candidate) delivers a revelation which does not come from God, such a candidate would be spurious prophet.
One might object that Paul was only passing judgment he was not promulgating personal revelations. Such a person should take note that (1.) the issue on which Paul was passing “judgment” was no mundane issue; it was a spiritual – a religious issue. And Christians would agree with me that religion is not man-made, its tenets, its rules and regulations on any matter – every matter is to be set by God through revelations through His apostles. (2) The above words of Paul are to be found in n ordinary book but Bible – The so purported Word of God, therefore, consequently, Paul’s words will have to be assumed as divine and revealed from God.

It is verifiably established, from biblical sources, specifically from Deuteronomy 18:20, that Paul was not a true apostle, however, he used his own mind to cull decrees of spiritual import. Not only that, he used his influence over multitudes to impress on them decrees of spiritual relevance which even led them to include his personal words in the so purported Word of God! 

Related reading:

Paul: Can he be a prophet of God?

Is the Bible reliable?

In the end

 

“Soon will We show them Our Signs in the (furthest) Regions (of the earth), and In their own souls, until It becomes manifest to them that this is the Truth. Is it not enough that Thy Lord doth witness All things?”(The Holy Quran, 41:53)

Note: I entreat Allah through this paper of mine to bestow mercy and blessings on my father who rests in his grave now. Ameen.

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Comments

  • Asad  On August 19, 2011 at 12:50 am

    Eminent refutation brother Question Mark, Mr. Woods will pull his hair after reading your article.
    “Truth has (now) arrived, and Falsehood perished: for Falsehood is (by its nature) bound to perish.” Qur’an 17:81

  • qmarkmark  On August 19, 2011 at 6:07 am

    Salam, praise be to Allah (SWT).

    Thank you brother, we only hope that David Wood reads it and, atleast, give up one of his favourite arguments of “Satanic Verses” which is entirely based on history or biography books etc, in other words, …based on books other than Qur’an and Hadith.

    sincerely,
    Q.M.

  • Jesus  On February 29, 2012 at 4:19 pm

    good one continue your good work

    • qmarkmark  On March 3, 2012 at 9:52 pm

      Salamoalaikum wr wb,

      Jazakallah – thanks for the appreaciation.

      sincerely,
      Ibn Salim Khan

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