The Prostration to Adam — A Quranic Problem

Part 1

Sam Shamoun


One Muslim named Jalal Abualrub has written a response (Part 1, Part 2) to Wail Taghlibi's article One Adam or Two?   Apparently, some other Muslims liked it, and so Abualrub's response was subsequently also taken on board by the Bismikaallahuma site.

As anyone reading Taghlibi's paper can see, his purpose was never to discuss or analyze the complex Islamic Fiqh as Abualrub imagined or claimed. Rather, he wanted to show that this command to the angels to fall prostrate before Adam, rightly seems illogical to a non-Muslim. But it is very appropriate for The Last Adam, the Lord Jesus, to be worshiped by angels and even men.

Our aim here is to address the criticisms raised by Abualrub against Taghlibi's points, without necessarily following the exact order or sequence of Abualrub's paper.

We begin by examining the reasons Abualrub gives for Allah demanding that angels prostrate to Adam. All Quranic quotations taken from A.J. Arberry's translation, unless noted otherwise.

For easier reading, we have decided to break down the article into the following sections:

Part 1 — When the Imam becomes confused ...


Part 2Appealing to the Bible for help? Consider the real sources!


What Happened to Eve?

Several times in his paper, Abualrub says that Allah commanded angels to bow to Adam because Adam was created by Allah's own hands. All underlined emphasis ours:

Allah mentioned His creating Adam with Both His Hands as the reason for His commanding the angels and Satan to prostrate before Adam. In comparison, Adam's offspring are created by Allah saying, "Be", and they come to existence. The topic of discussion in these Verses was the origin of creation, i.e., how Allah created some of His creation, not the worship of Adam, his privileges or subsequent sin. This is why Satan responded by saying, "I am better than him", then said, "You created me from fire and him, You created from clay." The Islamic tradition teaches that for a period of time before Adam was created, Satan was with the angels, even though he was from the Jinn (the devils are disbelieving Jinn), { So the angels prostrated themselves, all of them together. Except Ibls (Satan) — he refused to be among the prostrators }; [15:30-1]. If the topic of discussion were on who deserved to receive a Sujud on account of their privileges, Satan would have said, "I was in the company of the angels, who always worshipped You (Allah); Adam did not worship You at all before this."

Satan mentioned the purpose behind Allah ordering him and the angels to make Sujud to Adam, that is, Allah's ‘Ikram (honoring)' of Adam above the angels and the devils; the Quran stated that the reason behind Adam's ‘Ikram' is that Allah created him with Both His Hands. Hence, to honor Adam, the angels made Sujud to Adam in direct worship (obedience) to Allah Who created him with His Own Hands and Who does what He will. The question remains as to why Wail Taghlibi did not mention this Verse? And where is the Ayah that says that Satan protested the order to make Sujud to Adam on account of his rejection to perform an act of worship to Adam? Even the devil did not think of this one!

As stated, Islamic traditions teach that Iblis, the forefather of the Jinn, was with the angels and Allah put him to the test of obedience by ordering him and the angels to prostrate to Adam, soon after Allah created Adam with His Own Hands. Instead of acting like the angels by obeying Allah and honoring what He has created with His Own Hands, Satan refused and was thrown out of Allah's Mercy for eternity. He was arrogant and the father of evil, refuting Allah's Commandment by ‘informing' Him of which of His creation is better than others, fully knowing that Allah is the Creator, the All-Knower.

These mentioned Prophets also received a part of the honor that Allah bestowed on their honorable ancestor, Adam, the father of all of mankind, when the angels prostrated before him. Thus, Wail's statement, "…we may wonder why God would exclusively honor Adam by this privilege. The question becomes why would God not honor other prophets like Ibrahim, Musa, and Issa Al-Massih (Jesus Christ) in the same way?", is entirely irrelevant because the answer is: this honor was given to he who was created by Allah's Own Hands. Thus, we should ask Wail, who else among the Prophets and all of mankind was created by Allah's Own Hands so that he too receives the honor designated to he, Adam, who was created by Allah's Own Hands?

Seventh, the privilege of receiving the angels' Sujud that Allah gave Adam is not because Adam was a Prophet who received revelation from Allah, or because he was better than all other Prophets, or on account of what Adam did or did not do in his faith: there is not a single Quranic Verse that mention any of these ideas. This privilege, as Wail concurs, is exclusively based on what Allah Himself did: He created Adam with Both His Hands. Wail said, "Paul describes the origin of first Adam as ‘of dust of the earth' (1 Corinthians 15:47); thus referring the readers back to the beginning. ‘In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth…and God said, let there be…and there was' (Genesis 1:3, 6-7). God brought all things into being, by his word, (Psalms 33:6, 9; 145:5; Hebrews 11:3). But for Adam it is explicitly stated to be different. God created Adam in a different manner. ‘The Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being' (Genesis 2:7). That was a special favor that God exclusively conferred to Adam, but not to the rest of creatures. He did not come to existence by the simple command of God, but rather by receiving the breath of God, that gave him life.'"

Amazingly, Wail finds it ‘bewildering' that Adam, not the rest of mankind, would receive the honor of being prostrated to by the angels, even though he was endowed with this favor for being created by Allah's Own Hands, i.e., the very reason for ordering the angels and Satan to prostrate to Adam, i.e., the very special favor that Wail agreed was given to Adam and none else among creation. Why did not Wail protest this exclusive favor that God gave only to Adam, i.e., being the only living creation created by Allah's Own Hands, when other Prophets had more privileges and were better qualified to receive the honor of being created in this manner than Adam?

... Comparing Adam who sinned later on in his life to the rather fictitious, eternal, spiritual, sinless, second Adam, is just another fantasy that has no relevance to the topic under discussion, which is concentrated on he who was created by Allah's Own Hands. This is especially the case since according to the false Christian dogmas, Jesus was begotten not made.

... Adam was the representative of all of mankind when he received the honor of being prostrated to by the angels because Allah created him with His Own Hands...

In addition, the type of Sujud that the Prophet said he would have ordered the wife to perform to her husband, was explained by the Prophet himself in that it was due the husband's great right on his wife; [ Sahih at-Targheeb (1936)]. In another narration reported in, Sahih at-Targheeb (1935) , the Prophet, peace be upon him, further explained this Hadeeth by saying, " Because of what Allah favored (or, honored) him with above her. " In this last narration, the Prophet used the word, "Fadh-dhala", which describes a type of honor that Allah bestows on whomever He will. Allah said in the Quran, { And indeed We have honored (Karramna) the Children of Adam, and We have carried them on land and sea, and have provided them with At-Tayyibt (lawful good things) , and have preferred them (Fadh-dhal-nahum) above many of those whom We have created with a marked preferment }; [17:70]. Thus, two things are clear: the context of this Hadeeth is Sujud as a matter of tradition, and ‘Karramna', from the same root word as ‘Karramta', is another term that Wail mysteriously ignored mentioning in his article/Fatwa.

In his haste to refute Taghlibi, Abualrub completely forgot Eve and the manner in which she was created. The one major problem Abualrub (and every Muslim for that matter) has regarding the origin of Eve is that the Quran fails to mention her by name and doesn't explicitly say how she was exactly created. Noted Muslim scholar, Mahmoud M. Ayoub commenting on surah 2:30-38, says:

The story of Adam (30-38) is told in earlier surahs belonging to the later Meccan period. His creation, the obeisance of the angels to him, his dwelling in the garden and subsequent expulsion are all told in some detail. These verses may be seen as a commentary on an already well-known story, because they raise new issues and because they are placed before other and more explicit verses. These nine verses have raised many questions and controversies: Why did God tell the angels of His plan to establish a representative for Himself on the earth? How did the angels know that Adam's progeny would act wickedly? How could they question the will and wisdom of God? How was this vicegerent of God created and why did he soon disobey God's command against eating the forbidden fruit? What sort of fruit did the forbidden tree bear? Who was Satan and how was he able to enter the garden in order to lead the innocent Adam and his spouse astray? Adam's stay in Paradise, the creation of a mate for him, and their sin and expulsion are but briefly mentioned in the Qur'an. The Qur'an leaves many other questions UNANSWERED. It does not, for example, mention Eve by name, or the manner in which she was created. For the answers to these and other questions, commentators HAD TO RESORT TO THE PEOPLE OF THE BOOK… (Ayoub, The Qur'an and Its Interpreters - Volume 1 [State University of New York Press, Albany 1984], p. 73; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Despite the failure of the Quran to mention Eve by name or how she was actually made there are, nonetheless, passages which allude to her creation, albeit implicitly:

Mankind, fear your Lord, who created you of a single soul, and from it created its mate, and from the pair of them scattered abroad many men and women; and fear God by whom you demand one of another, and the wombs; surely God ever watches over you. S. 4:1

It is He who created you out of one living soul, and made of him his spouse that he might rest in her. Then, when he covered her, she bore a light burden and passed by with it; but when it became heavy they cried to God their Lord, ‘If Thou givest us a righteous son, WE indeed shall be of the thankful.’ Thereafter, when He gave them a righteous son, they assigned Him associates in that He had given them; but God is high exalted above that they associate. What, do they associate that which creates nothing and themselves are created, and that have no power to help them, neither they help themselves? S. 7:189-192

Now since the Quran doesn't explicitly specify how Allah exactly created Eve, we must consult either the Holy Bible or the Muslim traditions for that data. Yet, seeing that the Muslim traditions are much later than the Quran, we will first turn our attention to the Holy Bible before looking at the Islamic narrations:

"So the LORD God caused the man to fall into a deep sleep; and while he was sleeping, he took one of the man's ribs and closed up the place with flesh. Then the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man. The man said, 'This is now bone of my bones and flesh of my flesh; she shall be called "woman," for she was taken out of man.' For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and they will become one flesh." Genesis 2:21-24

Contrast this to the way man was created:

"the LORD God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being." Genesis 2:7

Noted Quran commentator, Ibn Kathir, wrote regarding surah 4:1:

<And from him He created his wife>

Hawwa' (Eve), who was created from Adam's left rib, from his back while he was sleeping. When Adam woke up and saw Hawwa', he liked her and had affection for her, and she felt the same toward him. An authentic Hadith states,

<Woman was created from a rib. Verily, the most curved portion of the rib is its upper part, so, if you should try to straighten it, you will break it, but if you leave it as it is, it will remain crooked.> (Source; bold emphasis ours)

Ibn Kathir, commenting on surah 30:21, says:

<It is He Who has created you from a single person, and He has created from him his wife, in order that he might enjoy the pleasure of living with her> (7:189).

This refers to Hawwa'. Allah created her from Adam, from the short rib on his left. If Allah had made all of Adam's progeny male, and created the females from another kind, such as from Jinn or animals, there would never have been harmony between them and their spouses. There would have been revulsion if the spouses had been from a different kind. Out of Allah's perfect mercy He made their wives from their own kind, and created love and kindness between them. For a man stays with a woman because he loves her, or because he feels compassion towards her if they have a child together, or because she needs him to take care of her, etc. (Source; bold emphasis ours)

Renowned Muslim historian and Quranic commentator, al-Tabari, narrated:

When Iblis' haughtiness and opposition to the command of his Lord which had been concealed from the angels became apparent to them, and the Lord censured Iblis for the disobedience he had shown to Him by not prostrating himself before Adam, but Iblis persisted in his disobedience and continued in his error and perversion, God cursed him and expelled him from Paradise. He deprived him of the rule that had been his over the lower heaven and the earth, and deposed him from his post as keeper of Paradise. God said to him: "Leave it!"- meaning Paradise- "for you are stoned. The curse will be upon you to the Day of Judgement."

[God said this to Iblis] while he was still in heaven and had not (yet) fallen to earth.

At the time, God had Adam dwell in His Paradise, as I was told by Musa b. Harun - 'Amr b. Hammad - Asbat- al-Suddi - Abu Malik and Abu Salih - Ibn 'Abbas. Also (al-Suddi) - Murrah al-Hamdani - Ibn Mas'ud and some (other) companions of the Prophet: Iblis was driven out of Paradise when he was cursed, and Adam was settled in Paradise. Adam used to go about there all alone, not having a spouse to dwell with. He fell asleep, and when he woke up he found sitting at his head a woman who had been created by God from his rib. He asked her what she was, and she replied: A woman. He asked for what purpose she had been created, and she replied: For you to dwell with me. The angels, looking (to find out) the extent of Adam's knowledge, asked him her name. He replied: Eve (Hawwa'). When the angels asked why she was called Eve, he replied: Because she was created from a living (hayy) thing. God said: "Adam dwell you and your spouse in Paradise! Eat freely of its plenty wherever you wish!"

According to Ibn Humayd - Salamah- Ibn Ishaq: When God finished with censuring Iblis, He went to Adam, whom He had taught all the names, and said: "Adam, tell their names" to: "You are knowing and wise." He continued. He then cast slumber upon Adam, as we have heard from the people of the Torah among the people of the Book and other scholars on the authority of 'Abd-allah b. 'Abbas and others. Then He took one of Adam's ribs from his left aside and replaced it with flesh, while Adam was asleep and did not stir, until God had created his spouse from that rib of his. He fashioned her to be a woman for him to dwell with. When slumber was lifted from him and he woke, he saw her at his side. It has been assumed- God knows best!- Adam said: My flesh and blood and spouse, and he dwelled with her. When God gave him a spouse and made for him a comfort (sakan) from his own person, He said to him face to face: Adam, dwell you and your spouse in Paradise! Eat freely of its plenty wherever you wish, but do not go near this tree, or you will be wrongdoers."

According to Muhammad b. 'Amr - Abu 'Asim (al-Nabil) - 'Isa (b. Maymun) - Ibn Abi Najih - Mujahid, commenting on God's word: "And He created from him his spouse," as follows: eve from Adam's lowest rib (qusayra'), while he was asleep. Then Adam woke up and said: Atta!, which is "woman" in Nabataean.

We were told the same by al-Muthanna - Abu Hudhayfah - Shibl - Ibn Abi Najih - Mujahid.

According to Bishr b. Mu'adh - Yazid b. Zuray' - Sa'id (b. Abi 'Arubah) - Qatadah, commenting on: "And He created from him his spouse": Meaning Eve who was created from one of Adam's ribs. (The History of Al-Tabari: General Introduction and From the Creation to the Flood, translated by Franz Rosenthal [State University of New York Press (SUNY), Albany 1989], Volume I, pp. 272-274)

God personally fashioned the woman just like he fashioned the man, with the only difference being that one was fashioned from dust, and the other from the side of the man. God personally involved himself in directly creating the woman just as he personally involved himself in directly creating the man from the dust.

Therefore, if Adam was honored due to his being created by the hands of Allah then what about Eve? Didn't Allah also create her by his hands? Then why wasn't she so honored? Why didn't Allah command angels to prostrate before both Adam and Eve?

The answer is obvious... Islam does not view women as having the same value and dignity as men. Abualrub provides indirect attestation to this fact by quoting a narration stating that women would have to prostrate to men if it was up to Muhammad:

There is an authentic Hadeeth that is directly related to this type of Sujud. W hen [sic] Mu`adh Ibn Jabal, the Prophet's companion, came back from the Sham Area (Syria) to Madinah, he prostrated before the Prophet, peace be upon him, who asked him, " What is this, O, Mu`adh? " Mu`adh said, "I visited the Sham Area and witnessed them prostrate before their priests and patriarchs. I wished to myself that we did the same for you." The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, " Do not do it. However, if I were to order anyone to prostrate before anyone else besides Allah, I would have ordered the wife to prostrate before her husband. " This is an authentic Hadeeth (Prophetic Statement) collected in, Sahih Ibn Majah . The topic of this Hadeeth is, "Making Sujud, as a matter of Islamic Law, to other than Allah". This specific topic was brought to the Prophet's attention, the same Prophet who received the Quran from Allah wherein is mentioned the Sujud of the angels to Adam. Even if the Quran had not elaborated on this topic –yet we proved that it did in the clearest terms- the Prophet himself elaborated on it. He did not say to Mu`adh, "Do not do this, because Sujud is an act of worship and directing any act of worship at other than Allah is Shirk." He did not say, "It is alright to do it, because the angels worshipped Adam as the Quran stated." He, peace be upon him, merely stated that this type of Sujud was prohibited in Islam and that if he were to allow it, he would have ordered the wife to prostrate to her husband. It is not possible that the Prophet, who upheld Islamic Monotheism in its most clear and pure form, would say to his companion, "If I were to order anyone to worship anyone else besides Allah, I would have ordered the wife to worship her husband in Sujud," because this would contradict the essence of Tau`heed which the companions embraced in defiance of Shirk itself. While commenting on this Hadeeth, Imam Ibn Taimiyyah said, "How can it be concluded that prostrating to something indicates worship of it, when the Prophet said…" and he mentioned the Hadeeth above, saying afterwards, "It is known that the Prophet did not say, ‘If I were to order anyone to worship anyone else…'"

This may well be the reason why Abualrub has not pursued his written debate with FaithFreedom's Ali Sina regarding the Islamic view of women, that Islam is misogynistic (here). Abualrub seems to realize that Islam views women as second class citizens in relation to men, and is therefore unwilling to have Mr. Sina expose Islam's degradation of women for all to read.

Here is what the Holy Bible, God's true Word, says about the value of women:

"Then God said, 'Let us make man in our image, in our likeness, and let THEM rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move along the ground.' So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them." Genesis 1:26-30

"This is the written account of Adam's line. When God created man, he made him in the likeness of God. He created THEM male and female and blessed THEM. And when they were created, he called THEM 'MAN (Adam).' When Adam had lived 130 years, he had a son in his own likeness, in his own image; and he named him Seth." Genesis 5:1-3

"In the Lord, however, woman is not independent of man, nor is man independent of woman. For as woman came from man, so also man is born of woman. But everything comes from God." 1 Corinthians 11:11-12

"There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus." Galatians 3:28

Amazingly, Islamic narrations say that Adam was made in Allah's image, but do not say this of the woman:

Narrated Abu Huraira:
The Prophet said, "Allah created Adam in HIS IMAGE, sixty cubits (about 30 metres) in height. When He created him, He said (to him), 'Go and greet that group of angels sitting there, and listen what they will say in reply to you, for that will be your greeting and the greeting of your offspring.' Adam (went and) said, 'As-Salamu alaikum (Peace be upon you).' They replied, 'As-Salamu 'Alaika wa Rahmatullah (Peace and Allah's Mercy be on you).' So they increased 'wa Rahmatullah' The Prophet added, 'So whoever will enter Paradise, will be of the shape and picture of Adam. Since then the creation of Adam's (offspring) (i.e. stature of human beings) is being diminished continuously up to the present time." (Sahih Bukhari, Volume 8, Book 74, Number 246 as translated in Interpretation of the Meanings of The Noble Quran In the English Language - A Summarized Version of At-Tabari, Al-Qurtubi and Ibn Kathir with comments from Sahih Al-Bukhari, Summarized in One Volume By Dr. Muhammad Taqi-ud-Din Al-Hilali, Ph.D. Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan, pp. 142-143, fn. 1, pocket size edition)

Abu Huraira reported Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) as saying: Allah, the Exalted and Glorious, created Adam in His own image with His length of sixty cubits, and as He created him He told him to greet that group, and that was a party of angels sitting there, and listen to the response that they give him, for it would form his greeting and that of his offspring. He then went away and said: Peace be upon you! They (the angels) said: May there be peace upon you and the Mercy of Allah, and they made an addition of "Mercy of Allah." So he who would get into Paradise would get in the form of Adam, his length being sixty cubits, then the people who followed him continued to diminish in size up to this day. (Sahih Muslim, Book 040, Number 6809)

This hadith has been transmitted on the authority of Abu Huraira and in the hadith transmitted on the authority of Ibn Hatim Allah's Apostle (may peace be upon him) is reported to have said: When any one of you fights with HIS BROTHER, he should avoid his face for Allah created Adam in His own image. (Sahih Muslim, Book 032, Number 6325)

The following Muslim website provides some additional narrations:

Ibn Abi ‘Aasim narrated in al-Sunnah (517) that Ibn ‘Umar said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "Do not say ‘May Allaah deform your face’ [a form of cursing in Arabic], for the son of Adam was created in the image of the Most Merciful." Shaykh ‘Abd-Allaah ibn al-Ghunaymaan (may Allaah preserve him) said: "This hadeeth is saheeh and was classed as such by the imams and by Imam Ahmad and Ishaaq ibn Raahawayh. Those who classed it as da’eef have no evidence, except for the view of Ibn Khuzaymah, but those who classed it as saheeh are more knowledgeable than him.

Ibn Abi ‘Aasim also narrated (516) that Abu Hurayrah said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "When any one of you fights let him avoid the face, for Allaah created Adam in the image of His Face." Shaykh al-Albaani said: its isnaad is saheeh.

These two hadeeth indicate that the pronoun in the phrase "in His image" refers to Allaah, may He be glorified...

From these ahaadeeth we learn that it is proven that Allaah has an image (soorah in Arabic), in a manner that befits Him, may He be glorified and exalted. His image is one of His attributes which cannot be likened to the attributes of created beings, just as His essence cannot be likened to their essence...

And he [Ibn Taymiyya] said: "There was no dispute among the salaf of the first three generations that the pronoun in the hadeeth refers to Allaah, and it is narrated through many isnaads from many of the Sahaabah. The contexts of the ahaadeeth all indicate that… but when al-Jahamiyyah became widespread in the third century AH, a group began to say that the pronoun refers to something other than Allaah, and this was transmitted from a group of scholars who are known to have knowledge and to follow the Sunnah in most of their affairs, such as Abu Thawr, Ibn Khuzaymah, Abu’l-Shaykh al-Asfahaani and others. Hence they were denounced by the imams of Islam and other Sunni scholars." ...

The Prophet’s words, "Adam was created in His image" means that Allaah created Adam in His image, for He has a face, an eye, a hand, and a foot, and Adam had a face, an eye, a hand, and a foot… but that does not mean that these things are exactly the same. There is some similarity, but it is not exactly the same. Similarly the first group to enter Paradise are likened to the moon, but they are not exactly the same. This confirms the view of Ahl al-Sunnah wa'l-Jamaa'ah, who say that none of the attributes of Allaah can be likened to the attributes of created beings, without distorting or misinterpreting, or discussing how or likening Him to His creation.

See Sharh al-‘Aqeedah al-Waasitah by Shaykh Muhammad ibn ‘Uthaymeen, 1/107, 293...

Islam Q&A (www.islam-qa.com)

(Question #20652: Commentary on the hadeeth, "Allaah created Adam in His image")

These narrations all presuppose that man is created in Allah's image, but fail to say this of the woman. In fact, the Quran says that women were created for men to enjoy, and that they are also the property of men:

Decked out fair TO MEN is the love of lusts -- women, children, heaped-up heaps of gold and silver, horses of mark, cattle and tillage. That is the enjoyment of the present life; but God -- with Him is the fairest resort. S. 3:14

Women are placed on the level of children, gold, silver, horses, cattle etc. as a means for men to satisfy their lusts. There are some narrations which liken women to toys, such as Muhammad saying:

"The woman IS A TOY, whoever takes her let him care for her (or do not lose her)." (Ahmad Zaky Tuffaha, Al-Mar'ah wal- Islam [Dar al-Kitab al-Lubnani, Beirut, first edition, 1985], p. 180; bold emphasis ours)

Umar Ibn al-Khattab once told his wife:

"You are a toy, if you are needed we will call you." (Abu Bakr Ahmad Ibn 'Abd Allah Ibn Mousa Al-Kanadi, Al-Musanaf, Vol. 1 pt. 2, p. 263- see also Al-Ghazali, Ihy'a 'Uloum ed-Din, Vol. II, Kitab Adab al-Nikah [Dar al-Kotob al-'Elmeyah, Beirut], p. 52; bold emphasis ours)

The Caliph 'Amru Bin al-'Aas said:

"Women are toys, so choose." (Kanz-el-'Ummal, Volume 21, Hadith No. 919; bold emphasis ours)

These next verses pretty much say the same thing:

It is He who created you out of one living soul, and made of him his spouse that HE might rest in her. Then, when he covered her, she bore a light burden and passed by with it; but when it became heavy they cried to God their Lord, 'If Thou givest us a righteous son, we indeed shall be of the thankful.' S. 7:189

God has appointed FOR YOU of yourselves WIVES, and He has appointed FOR YOU of your wives sons and grandsons, and He has provided you of the good things. What, do they believe in vanity, and do they disbelieve in God's blessing? S. 16:72

And of His signs is that He created FOR YOU, of yourselves, spouses, that you might repose in them, and He has set between you love and mercy. Surely in that are signs for a people who consider. S. 30:21

Again, notice how these references say that women were created FOR men so that men may rest in them, implying that women exist only for man's gratification. Here is what another renowned commentator said about surah 30:21:

"His saying 'created for you' is a proof that women were created like animals and plants and other useful things, just as the Most High has said 'He created for you what is on earth' and that necessitates the woman not to be created for worship and carrying the Divine commands. We say creating the women is one of the graces bestowed upon us and charging them with Divine commands to complete the graces bestowed upon us, not that they are charged as we men are charged. For women are not charged with many commands as we are charged, because the woman is weak, silly, in one sense she is like a child, and no commands are laid upon a child, but for the grace of Allah upon us to be complete, women had to be charged so that they may fear the torment of punishment and so follow her husband, and keep away from what is forbidden, otherwise corruption would be rampant." (ar-Razi, At-Tafsir al-Kabir) (Source; all bold emphasis ours)


What was that about Jesus?

Let us again repeat what Abualrub said regarding the reason for Allah commanding his angelic host to prostrate before Adam:

Allah mentioned His creating Adam with Both His Hands as the reason for His commanding the angels and Satan to prostrate before Adam. In comparison, Adam's offspring are created by Allah saying, "Be", and they come to existence. The topic of discussion in these Verses was the origin of creation, i.e., how Allah created some of His creation, not the worship of Adam, his privileges or subsequent sin. This is why Satan responded by saying, "I am better than him", then said, "You created me from fire and him, You created from clay." The Islamic tradition teaches that for a period of time before Adam was created, Satan was with the angels, even though he was from the Jinn (the devils are disbelieving Jinn), { So the angels prostrated themselves, all of them together. Except Ibls (Satan) — he refused to be among the prostrators }; [15:30-1]. If the topic of discussion were on who deserved to receive a Sujud on account of their privileges, Satan would have said, "I was in the company of the angels, who always worshipped You (Allah); Adam did not worship You at all before this."

Here, Abualrub claims that mankind, unlike the first man Adam, was created by Allah's creative command, "Be." Abualrub must have forgotten the following verse:

Truly, the likeness of Jesus, in God's sight, is as Adam's likeness; He created him OF DUST (turabin), then said He unto him, 'BE,' and he was. S. 3:59

The above passage cannot be speaking of Jesus' creation since Allah didn't create him from dust, but from the womb of the virgin Mary, so this is clearly speaking of Adam. Therefore, Adam, much like the rest of mankind, was also created by God's command.

Now, Abualrub may try to interject here and say that the Quran speaks of mankind being created from dust as well:

O men, if you are in doubt as to the Uprising, surely We created you of dust then of a sperm-drop, then of a blood clot, then of a lump of flesh, formed and unformed that We may make clear to you. And We establish in the wombs what We will, till a stated term, then We deliver you as infants, then that you may come of age; and some of you die, and some of you are kept back unto the vilest state of life, that after knowing somewhat, they may know nothing. And thou beholdest the earth blackened, then, when We send down water upon it, it quivers, and swells, and puts forth herbs of every joyous kind. S. 22:5- cf. 18:37; 30:20; 35:11; 40:67

These passages are not saying that all mankind is created from dust. Rather, these passages are speaking of the progenitor of humanity, that all humanity has its origin in the first man Adam, who was created from the dust of the earth. And it is in this sense which mankind can be said to have originated from dust. In the words of Ibn Kathir:

<then verily, We have created you from dust,>

meaning, ‘you were originally created from dust’, which is what Adam, peace be upon him, was created from. (Commentary on 22:5; Source)

And:

<And among His signs> -- which speak of His might and power, is the fact that He created your father Adam out of dust. (Commentary on 30:20; Source)

Ibn Kathir makes the following comments regarding surahs 23:12 and 7:11:

The Sign of Allah in the progressive creation of Man from Clay then from Nutfah and thereafter

Allah tells us how He initially created man from an extract of Tin. This was Adam, peace be upon him, whom Allah created from sounding clay of altered black smooth mud. Ibn Jarir said, "Adam was called Tin because he was created from it." Qatadah said, "Adam was created from Tin." This is the more apparent meaning and is closer to the context, for Adam, upon him be peace, was created from a sticky Tin, which is a sounding clay of altered black smooth mud, and that is created from dust, as Allah says: ...

<And among His signs is this that He created you (Adam) from dust, and then -- behold you are human beings scattered!> [30:20]... (Source)

Therefore, the Ayah (7:11) refers to Adam, although Allah used the plural in this case, because Adam is the father of all mankind. Similarly, Allah said to the Children of Israel who lived during the time of the Prophet, ...

<And We shaded you with clouds and sent down on you manna and the quail,> [2:57]

This refers to their forefathers who lived during the time of Moses. But, since that was a favor given to the forefathers, and they are their very source, then the offspring have also been favored by it. This is not the case in:

<And indeed We created man out of an extract of clay (water and earth.)> [23:12]

For this merely means that Adam was created from clay. His children were created from Nutfah (mixed male and female sexual discharge). This last Ayah is thus talking about the origin of mankind, not that they were all created from clay, and Allah knows best. (Commentary on surah 7:11; Source)

Thus, these passages provide further substantiation that surah 3:59 is actually referring to Adam, not Jesus. This essentially proves that Adam's creation was in no way more unique or honorable than the creation of Jesus, and therefore establishes Taghlibi's point that Jesus is just as deserving, if not more so, of the honor of receiving prostration as did Adam, since their creations are similar.

In point of fact, Jesus is even more deserving of receiving prostration since he is greater than Adam in everyway. Instead of proving our case from God's true Word, the Holy Bible, we will use the very source which Abualrub considers authoritative to establish our points:

1. Jesus was born of a virgin, Adam was not.

'Lord,' said Mary, 'how shall I have a son seeing no mortal has touched me?' 'Even so,' God said, God creates what He will. When He decrees a thing He does but say to it "Be," and it is. S. 3:47

And mention in the Book Mary when she withdrew from her people to an eastern place, and she took a veil apart from them; then We sent unto her Our Spirit that presented himself to her a man without fault. She said, 'I take refuge in the All-merciful from thee! If thou fearest God ... He said, 'I am but a messenger come from thy Lord, to give thee a boy most pure. She said, 'How shall I have a son whom no mortal has touched, neither have I been unchaste?' He said, 'Even so thy Lord has said: "Easy is that for Me; and that We may appoint him a sign unto men and a mercy from Us; it is a thing decreed."' S. 19:16-21

The Quran emphatically affirms Jesus' virgin birth. Yet a good question to ask is why a virgin birth in the first place seeing that God's law of reproduction had already been set in motion? Adam's creation was due primarily to the circumstances in which he was created. Being the first man, there could have been no possible way for him to be born of parents through sexual union. Yet the situation with Christ was different and a virgin birth wasn't required, unless there was something special and unique about Jesus. The Quran does not give a good or valid reason for the virgin birth, apart from Allah showing he can create anyway he sees fit. But this still wouldn't explain why Allah chose to demonstrate his creative ability by causing Jesus to be conceived from a virgin, as opposed to someone else, i.e. Abraham, Moses, Muhammad etc.

The Holy Bible gives us the reason why Jesus was born of a virgin:

"And Mary said to the angel, `How shall this be, since I have no husband?' And the angel said to her, `The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you; Therefore the child to be born will be called holy, the Son of God.'" Luke 1:34-35

The reason for the virgin birth is due to the Lord Jesus being God's unique and beloved Son, and as the Son this was a quite befitting manner for him to take on human nature.

2. Jesus was sinless, Adam was not.

When the wife of Imran said, 'Lord, I have vowed to Thee, in dedication, what is within my womb. Receive Thou this from me; Thou hearest, and knowest.' And when she gave birth to her she said, 'Lord, I have given birth to her, a female.' (And God knew very well what she had given birth to; the male is not as the female.) 'And I have named her Mary, and commend her to Thee with her seed, to protect them from the accursed Satan.' S. 3:35-36

Muhammad purportedly interpreted the preceding passage as implying that only Mary and her Son were protected from Satan when they were born:

Narrated Said bin Al-Musaiyab:
Abu Huraira said, "I heard Allah's Apostle saying, 'There is none born among the off-spring of Adam, but Satan touches it. A child therefore, cries loudly at the time of birth because of the touch of Satan, EXCEPT MARY AND HER CHILD." Then Abu Huraira recited: "And I seek refuge with You for her and for her offspring from the outcast Satan" (3.36) (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 55, Number 641; see also Volume 4, Book 54, Number 506)

And:

... He said, 'I am but a messenger come from thy Lord, to give thee a boy most pure (ghulaman zakiyyan). S. 19:19

Another narration brings out the contrast much more clearly:

Narrated Anas:
The Prophet said, "On the Day of Resurrection the Believers will assemble and say, 'Let us ask somebody to intercede for us with our Lord.' So they will go to Adam and say, 'You are the father of all the people, and Allah created you with His Own Hands, and ordered the angels to prostrate to you, and taught you the names of all things; so please intercede for us with your Lord, so that He may relieve us from this place of ours.' Adam will say, 'I am not fit for this (i.e. intercession for you).' Then Adam will remember his sin and feel ashamed thereof. He will say, 'Go to Noah, for he was the first Apostle Allah sent to the inhabitants of the earth.' They will go to him and Noah will say, 'I am not fit for this undertaking.' He will remember his appeal to his Lord to do what he had no knowledge of, then he will feel ashamed thereof and will say, 'Go to the Khalil--r-Rahman (i.e. Abraham).' They will go to him and he will say, 'I am not fit for this undertaking. Go to Moses, the slave to whom Allah spoke (directly) and gave him the Torah .' So they will go to him and he will say, 'I am not fit for this undertaking.' and he will mention (his) killing a person who was not a killer, and so he will feel ashamed thereof before his Lord, and he will say, 'Go to Jesus, Allah's Slave, His Apostle and Allah's Word and a Spirit coming from Him.' Jesus will say, 'I am not fit for this undertaking, go to Muhammad the Slave of Allah whose past and future sins were forgiven by Allah.'... (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 6, Book 60, Number 3)

Jesus is the only prophet in this list who doesn't mention any personal sins. Even Muhammad was a sinner, unlike the Lord Jesus, according to this so-called sound hadith! Thus, if anyone would be worthy of interceding it wouldn't be Muhammad, but the sinless Savior, the Lord Jesus.

3. Jesus performed miracles, Adam did not.

to be a Messenger to the Children of Israel saying, "I have come to you with a sign from your Lord. I will create for you out of clay as the likeness of a bird; then I will breathe into it, and it will be a bird, by the leave of God. I will also heal the blind and the leper, and bring to life the dead, by the leave of God. I will inform you too of what things you eat, and what you treasure up in your houses. Surely in that is a sign for you, if you are believers. S. 3:49

When God said, 'Jesus Son of Mary, remember My blessing upon thee and upon thy mother, when I confirmed thee with the Holy Spirit, to speak to men in the cradle, and of age; and when I taught thee the Book, the Wisdom, the Torah, the Gospel; and when thou createst out of clay, by My leave, as the likeness of a bird, and thou breathest into it, and it is a bird, by My leave; and thou healest the blind and the leper by My leave, and thou bringest the dead forth by My leave; and when restrained from thee the Children of Israel when thou camest unto them with the clear signs, and the unbelievers among them said, "This is nothing but sorcery manifest." S. 5:110

4. Jesus ascended to heaven alive (according to orthodox Sunni belief), yet Adam died.

When God said, 'Jesus, I will take thee to Me and will raise thee to Me and I will purify thee of those who believe not. I will set thy followers above the unbelievers till the Resurrection Day. Then unto Me shall you return, and I will decide between you, as to what you were at variance on. S. 3:55

God raised him up to Him; God is All-mighty, All-wise. S. 4:158

5. Jesus is a spirit proceeding from God and his very own Word, whereas Adam was given life by God's Spirit and was created by God's command.

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

People of the Book, go not beyond the bounds in your religion, and say not as to God but the truth. The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was only the Messenger of God, and His Word that He committed to Mary, and a Spirit from Him. So believe in God and His Messengers, and say not, 'Three.' Refrain; better is it for you. God is only One God. Glory be to Him -- That He should have a son! To Him belongs all that is in the heavens and in the earth; God suffices for a guardian. S. 4:171

The expression, "a Spirit from Him", is used only one other time in the Quran:

Thou shalt not find any people who believe in God and the Last Day who are loving to anyone who opposes. God and His Messenger, not though they were their fathers, or their sons, or their brothers, or their clan. Those -- He has written faith upon their hearts, and He has confirmed them with a Spirit from Himself; and He shall admit them into gardens underneath which rivers flow, therein to dwell forever, God being well-pleased with them, and they well-pleased with Him. Those are God's party; why, surely God's party -- they are the prosperers. S. 58:22

The late Muslim commentator, Abdullah Yusuf Ali, noted:

"... Cf. ii 87 and 253, where it is said that God strengthened the Prophet Jesus with the holy spirit. Here we learn that all good and righteous men are strengthened by God with the holy spirit. If anything, the phrase used here is stronger, ‘a spirit from Himself’. Whenever any one offers his heart in faith and purity to God, God accepts it, engraves that faith on the seeker's heart, and further fortifies him with the Divine Spirit, which we can no more define adequately than we can define in human language the nature of God." (Ali, The Meaning of the Holy Quran, p. 1518, fn. 5365; bold emphasis ours)

Since the Quran identifies Jesus as a spirit from God, this therefore shows that Christ too is one who "we can no more define adequately than we can define in human language the nature of God." The Quran, at this point, comes very close to affirming the deity of the Lord Jesus.

6. Jesus will return as a just judge and kill the antichrist, whereas Adam will remain dead till the day of resurrection.

Narrated Abu Huraira:
Allah's Apostle said, "By Him in Whose Hands my soul is, surely (Jesus,) the son of Mary will soon descend amongst you and will judge mankind justly (as a Just Ruler); he will break the Cross and kill the pigs and there will be no Jizya (i.e. taxation taken from non Muslims). Money will be in abundance so that nobody will accept it, and a single prostration to Allah (in prayer) will be better than the whole world and whatever is in it." Abu Huraira added "If you wish, you can recite (this verse of the Holy Book): -- 'And there is none Of the people of the Scriptures (Jews and Christians) But must believe in him (i.e Jesus as an Apostle of Allah and a human being) Before his death. And on the Day of Judgment He will be a witness Against them." (4.159) (See Fateh Al Bari, Page 302 Vol 7) (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 55, Number 657)

'Abdullah b. 'Amr reported that a person came to him and said: What is this hadith that you narrate that the Last Hour would come at such and such time? Thereupon he said: Hallowed be Allah, there is no god but Allah (or the words to the same effect). I have decided that I would not narrate anything to anyone now. I had only said that you would see after some time an important event that the (sacred) House (Ka'ba) would be burnt and it would happen and definitely happen. He then reported that Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: The Dajjal would appear in my Ummah and he would stay (in the world) for forty-I cannot say whether he meant forty days, forty months or forty years. And Allah would then send Jesus son of Mary who would resemble 'Urwa b Mas'ud. He (Jesus Christ) would chase him and kill him... (Sahih Muslim, Book 041, Number 7023)

The preceding data from the Islamic sources demonstrates that if anyone was worthy of receiving prostration it would be the Lord Jesus, not Adam. In fact, there are Muslim sources which say that John the baptist prostrated before Christ. Al-Qurtubi mentions Elizabeth's visitation (called Mary's sister) shortly after both women had conceived:

"The sister visited Mary and said, ‘O Mary, do you perceive that I am with child?’ Mary answered, ‘Do you see that I am also with child?’ Her sister went on, ‘I feel the child in my womb bowing down to the child in your womb.’"

Al-Qurtubi continues:

"It is reported that she felt the fetus in her womb bow down with its head turned toward Mary's womb." (Mahmoud M. Ayoub, The Qur'an and Its Interpreters, Volume II, The House of 'Imran [State University of New York Press, Albany 1992], p. 108; bold and italic emphasis ours)

Al-Tabari writes:

"She [Mary] came to her sister who was then pregnant and to whom the birth of the Baptist had been announced. When the two met, the Baptist's mother felt that her child was bowing within her in recognition of Jesus ..." (History of Al-Tabari: The Ancient Kingdoms, translated by Moshe Perlmann [State University of New York Press, Albany, 1987], Volume IV, p. 114; bold emphasis ours)

And:

"... Her sister, the wife of Zechariah, came to visit her at night. When Mary opened the door for her, the sister clung to her. The wife of Zechariah said, ‘Oh Mary, do you know I am with child?’ Mary replied, ‘Do you know, that I too am with child?’ Zechariah's wife then said, ‘I felt that the child in me was bowing to the child in you,’ as it is written, ‘confirming the Word of God.’" (Ibid., p. 119; bold emphasis ours)

These scholars were simply repeating what is found in the Gospel:

"When Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. In a loud voice she exclaimed: ‘Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the child you will bear! But why am I so favored, that the mother OF MY LORD should come to me? As soon as the sound of your greeting reached my ears, the baby in my womb leaped for joy.’" Luke 1:41-44

John the Baptist was caused by God to leap in his mother's womb in honor of Christ being the Sovereign Lord. Elizabeth calls the recently conceived baby in Mary's womb her Lord in obvious anticipation of what the angels would later announce at Christ's birth:

"Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord." Luke 2:11

For more on the worship given to the Lord Jesus and the biblical evidence showing that Christ's followers worshiped and prostrated themselves before Christ, please read the article The New Testament on the Worship given to Jesus

This is not the only time Muslims, especially Muhammad, took over stories which they heard from Jews and Christians. We will have a lot more to say about this a little later in our rebuttal.

The preceding factors show that even the Quran agrees that Jesus is vastly superior to Adam, and is therefore more deserving of honor and glory than the first man.

We are not alone in seeing it this way, nor is this merely a Christian understanding of the Islamic data. One moderate Muslim writer candidly admits that, according to the Quran, Jesus is the greatest of all prophets. After citing surahs 2:253, 3:42-46, and 3:59, the author says:

Moslem religious leaders try to isolate Muhammad from all other prophets by saying, "God kept the best for last." Again, this directly contradicts the Koran's teachings. The Koran says that some prophets have been given more than others - that some even talk to God. The example it gives is that of Jesus Christ, not Muhammad ...

These passages clearly show that God considered Jesus to be His best prophet, not Muhammad. After all, Jesus revealed himself to be a prophet from childhood, while Muhammad was not inspired until he was forty years old. The Koran relates a number of miracles from Jesus' childhood, but says nothing of this phase of Muhammad's life. The name "Christ" is also used. Unlike Jesus, Muhammad was not a special messenger of God, but a mere helper, who brought justice to the world, and glorified the name of Jesus by setting the record straight about his deeds on earth. His mission was also to eliminate the corruption of the message of those prophets who had gone before him. On the other hand, of Jesus it is said that he was created in a similar way to Adam ...

Bear in mind that when God announced His creation of Adam to the angels He commanded them to bow to him. (Dr. Nader Pourhassan, The Corruption of Moslem Minds [Barbed Wire Publishing, Las Cruces, New Mexico 2002], pp. 34-35)

Christian readers especially will be interested to learn that the Koran teaches that Jesus was God's best prophet, and that Christians will be placed above non-believers until the Day of Judgment... (Ibid., p. 61)

Moslem religious leaders claim that Muhammad was the greatest prophet ever sent. If this was true, then God would have stated so in the Koran. Instead, when God talks of a prophet being greater than others, the name He mentions is that of Jesus. (Ibid., p. 101)

This leads us to our next point.


Will the Real Adam Please Stand Up?

Abualrub labeled Taghlibi's reference to Jesus as the second Adam as fiction:

One Adam, Two Adams, Three Adams, And So Forth

Eighth, when Adam received the prostration from the angels, he had not yet committed a sin. However, Wail made a comparison between the sinful Adam and the sinless second Adam, saying, "After this review of the characteristics of the first Adam, and those of the last Adam, Jesus Christ, a brief comparison between them would demonstrate who deserves to receive prostration from angels." Comparing Adam who sinned later on in his life to the rather fictitious, eternal, spiritual, sinless, second Adam, is just another fantasy that has no relevance to the topic under discussion, which is concentrated on he who was created by Allah's Own Hands. This is especially the case since according to the false Christian dogmas, Jesus was begotten not made.

Abualrub is operating under the assumption that the Holy Bible, unlike the Quran, is not completely accurate or trustworthy. Therefore, if the Bible calls Jesus the second Adam, this is nothing more than fiction and fantasy. In order to do justice to this subject, we would have to demonstrate the veracity and inspiration of the biblical books, something which is beyond the scope of this rebuttal. We will simply have to provide links documenting the overwhelming evidence supporting the Bible's veracity at the end of our rebuttal.

At this point, we would again like to appeal to Abualrub's so-called holy book to prove that the Holy Bible is correct here. In the previous section, we had cited the following references:

"And (appoint him) an apostle to the Children of Israel, (with this message): "'I have come to you, with a Sign from your Lord, in that I MAKE for you out of clay, as it were, the figure of a bird, AND BREATHE INTO IT, and it becomes a bird by God's leave: And I heal those born blind, and the lepers, and I quicken the dead, by God's leave; and I declare to you what ye eat, and what ye store in your houses. Surely therein is a Sign for you if ye did believe;" S. 3:49 Y. Ali

Lo! the likeness of Jesus with Allah is AS THE LIKENESS of Adam. He created him of dust, then He said unto him: Be! and he is. S. 3:59 Pickthall

O People of the Scripture! Do not exaggerate in your religion nor utter aught concerning Allah save the truth. The Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, was only a messenger of Allah, and His word which He conveyed unto Mary, AND A SPIRIT FROM HIM. So believe in Allah and His messengers, and say not "Three" - Cease! (it is) better for you! - Allah is only One God. Far is it removed from His Transcendent Majesty that He should have a son. His is all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth. And Allah is sufficient as Defender. S. 4:171

Muslim narrations indicate that Adam's sin caused his offspring to be expelled from Paradise:

It is narrated on the authority of Abu Huraira and Hudhaifa that the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) said: Allah, the Blessed and Exalted, would gather people. The believers would stand till the Paradise would be brought near them. They would come to Adam and say: O our father, open for us the Paradise. He would say: What turned you out from the Paradise WAS THE SIN OF YOUR FATHER ADAM. I am not in a position to do that; ... (Sahih Muslim, Book 001, Number 0380)

Narrated Abu Huraira:
The Prophet said, "Adam and Moses argued with each other. Moses said to Adam. 'O Adam! You are our father WHO DISAPPOINTED US AND TURNED US OUT OF PARADISE.' Then Adam said to him, 'O Moses! Allah favored you with His talk (talked to you directly) and He wrote (the Torah) for you with His Own Hand. Do you blame me for action which Allah had written in my fate forty years before my creation?' So Adam confuted Moses, Adam confuted Moses," the Prophet added, repeating the Statement three times. (Sahih Bukhari, Volume 8, Book 77, Number 611)

Abu Huraira reported that God’s messenger told of Adam and Moses holding a disputation in their Lord’s presence and of Adam getting the better of Moses in argument. Moses said, "You are Adam whom God created with His hand, into whom He breathed of His spirit, to whom He made the angels do obeisance, and whom He caused to dwell in his garden; then BECAUSE OF YOUR SIN caused MANKIND to come down to the earth." Adam replied, "And you are Moses whom God chose to deliver His messages and to address, to whom He gave the tablets on which everything was explained, and whom He brought near as a confidant. How long before I was created did you find that God has written the Torah? Moses said, "Forty years." Adam asked, "Did you find in it, ‘And Adam disobeyed his Lord and erred’?" On being told that he did, he said, "Do you then blame me for doing a deed which God had decreed that I should do forty years before He created me?" God’s messenger said, "So Adam got the better of Moses n the argument." Muslim transmitted it. (Mishkat Al-Masabih English Translation With Explanatory Notes by Dr. James Robson, Volume I [Sh. Muhammad Ahsraf Publishers, Booksellers & Exporters, Lahore-Pakistan, Reprint 1990], p. 23; bold and capital emphasis ours)

This Ayah mentions the great honor that Allah granted Adam, and Allah reminded Adam's offspring of this fact. Allah commanded the angels to prostrate before Adam, as this Ayah and many Hadiths testify, such as the Hadith about the intercession that we discussed. There is a Hadith about the supplication of Musa, "O my Lord! Show me Adam who caused us and himself to be thrown out of Paradise.'' When Musa met Adam, he said to him, "Are you Adam whom Allah created with His Own Hands, blew life into and commanded the angels to prostrate before?'' Iblis was among Those ordered to prostrate before Adam, although He was not an Angel. (Ibn Kathir on surah 2:34; Source)

Islamic tradition also blames Eve for causing God's curse to fall on all future generations of women, and for having a negative influence on them:

Narrated Abu Huraira:
The Prophet said, "Were it not for Bani Israel, meat would not decay; and were it not FOR EVE, no woman would ever betray her husband." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 55, Number 611)

Hammam b. Munabbih said: These are some of the ahadith which Abu Huraira (Allah be pleased with him) narrated to us from Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him), and one of these (this one): Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: Had it not been for Bani Isra'il, food would not have become stale, and meal would not have gone bad; and had it not been FOR Eve, a woman would never have acted unfaithfully toward her husband. (Sahih Muslim, Book 008, Number 3472)

Lest Abualrub takes exception with these hadiths, we only need to remind him of his own words at this point:

The two most authentic books after the Quran are the Hadeeth collections of al-Bukhari then Muslim [13]. They are called, "As-Sahihan", meaning, "The Two Authentic Collections". Al-Bukhari and Muslim gained this status among Hadeeth Collectors on account of their successful implementation of the tough conditions they set for any Hadeeth to be included in their books, not because they were the oldest, or the largest, or the "inspired" or the "official" collections. Then, there is no agreement among Muslim Scholars on which Sunnah books respectively come after these two books in authenticity. (The Prophet of Mercy, Chapter Two; source)

Here is one final narration from al-Tabari:

According to Yunus - Ibn Wahb - Ibn Zayd (commenting on God's word: "And he whispered"): Satan whispered to Eve about the tree and succeeded in taking her to it; then he made it seem good to Adam. He continued. When Adam felt a need for her and called her, she said: No! unless you go there. When he went, she said again: No! unless you eat from this tree. He continued. They both ate from it, and their secret parts became apparent to them. He continued. Adam then went about in Paradise in flight. His Lord called out to him: Adam, is it from Me that you are fleeing? Adam replied: No, my Lord, but I feel shame before You. When God asked what had caused his trouble, he replied: Eve, my Lord. Whereupon God said: Now it is My obligation to make her bleed once every month, as she made this tree bleed. I ALSO MAKE HER STUPID, although I had created her intelligent (halimah), and must make her suffer pregnancy and birth with difficulty, although I made it easy for her to be pregnant and give birth. Ibn Zayd said: Were it not for the affliction that affected Eve, the women of this world would not menstruate, AND THEY WOULD BE INTELLIGENT and, when pregnant, give birth easily. (The History of Al-Tabari, Volume 1, pp. 280-281; bold and capital emphasis ours)

More could be said about these issues, and verses from the Quran could be produced to support the above narrations, but these must suffice for now.

The preceding citations establish the following points:

1) Jesus, in some way, is like Adam.

2) Jesus is a Spirit proceeding from God.

3) Jesus has the breath of life whereby he can bring inanimate things to life and raise the dead.

4) Adam's (as well as Eve's) sin brought judgment and expulsion to the rest of mankind.

Let us now compare this to the following NT passages:

"Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who was a pattern of the one to come. But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God's grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! Again, the gift of God is not like the result of the one man's sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God's abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ. Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men. For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous. The law was added so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Romans 5:14-21

"But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. But each in his own turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him." 1 Corinthians 15:20-23

"So it is written: 'The first man Adam became a living being'; the last Adam, a lifegiving spirit. The spiritual did not come first, but the natural, and after that the spiritual. The first man was of the dust of the earth, the second man from heaven. As was the earthly man, so are those who are of the earth; and as is the man from heaven, so also are those who are of heaven. And just as we have borne the likeness of the earthly man, so shall we bear the likeness of the man from heaven." 1 Corinthians 15:45-49

The Quran, in agreement with the preceding NT citations, says Jesus is like Adam, which happens to be another way of saying that Jesus is the second Adam, and that Jesus is also a life-giving Spirit. Therefore, if the Bible is fictitious at this point then the same thing must be said of the Quran since it is in complete agreement with God's true Word! And it may indeed be the case that both books are wrong regarding Jesus being like Adam, since there may have never been an Adam or Jesus may never have been another Adam. These stories may simply be fables and myths created by religious groups seeking to justify their devotion and existence. But a Muslim such as Abualrub cannot adopt this position without discrediting the Quran, so for him to call the Bible's teaching on Jesus being another, or second, Adam fiction is truly intriguing and inconsistent to say the least.

Now, in light of the above Islamic data demonstrating that Jesus is vastly superior to Adam, it is quite obvious that being similar to Adam doesn't mean that Christ is exactly like Adam, or that Christ is identical to the first man. Jesus is like Adam in certain ways, which makes him another or second Adam, whereas he is also infinitely greater than Adam. Adam is only a type, a foreshadowing, of the Lord Jesus who is the antitype and reality, and the type is not as great as the antitype.

Summary Analysis

What we have seen thus far is that Adam's creation wasn't necessarily unique, since the creation of Jesus and Eve were similar to Adam's formation. Eve, much like Adam, was created directly by God, which means that she was just as deserving of the honor which God demanded the angels to show Adam.

The Quran likens the creation of Jesus with Adam's, in that he too was created directly by God in his virgin mother's womb. Add to this point the long list of qualities and privileges given to Christ, and we can see why Jesus was more deserving of the honor given to Adam by the angels.

This means that the reason the Quran gives for Allah commanding angels to bow to Adam, i.e. that he created him with his own hands, is unsatisfactory since neither Jesus nor Eve received the honor of having angels prostrate before them even though they were created in a similar manner.

Furthermore, the Quran agrees with God's true Word, the Holy Bible, that Jesus is like Adam in certain respects, and can therefore be considered a second Adam.

Abualrub may call into question the Islamic narrations which speak of Eve being created from Adam's ribs. He may wish to say that these are stories from Jews and Christians (Israeliyyat) which crept into the Islamic sources, and therefore are not reliable. The only problem with this objection is that the same thing has happened with the Quran, i.e., one finds that Jewish and Christian stories, fables etc., have crept their way into the Quran as well. In fact, the very story of angels bowing to Adam, with Satan refusing, is itself an Israeliyyat narration as we shall show in the second part of our rebuttal. To, therefore, reject the Islamic narrations on the basis of their being based on Jewish and Christian stories without also rejecting the Quran for all its garbled up Jewish-Christian material is to be grossly inconsistent.

Abualrub may also wish to bring out passages from the Bible where women seem to be degraded in order to justify Islam's low view of them. Just in case he does, here are the links to articles addressing the Bible's view of women, as well as providing plenty of Islamic data for the abuse of women:

http://christian-thinktank.com/femalex.html
http://answering-islam.org/Authors/Newton/women.html
http://answering-islam.org/Responses/Azeem/myths.htm
http://answering-islam.org/Wales/eve.htm
http://answering-islam.org/Shamoun/badawi_lies2.htm
http://answering-islam.org/Responses/Osama/women.htm
http://answering-islam.org/Responses/Osama/women2a.htm
http://answering-islam.org/Responses/Osama/women2b.htm
http://answering-islam.org/BehindVeil/btv3.html#CH3
http://www.faithfreedom.org/Articles/abulkazem/Women_in_Islam.htm
http://www.faithfreedom.org/Articles/sina/women_before_islam.htm
http://www.faithfreedom.org/Articles/abulkazem/unveiling_islamic_veil.htm
http://www.faithfreedom.org/Articles/SStephan/slavegirls.htm


The Meaning of Prostration

In several places, the Quran speaks of prostrating to God alone, and equates prostration with worship or service to God, a point with which even Abualrub agrees:

And he reviewed the birds; then he said, 'How is it with me, that I do not see the hoopoe? Or is he among the absent? Assuredly I will chastise him with a terrible chastisement, or I will slaughter him, or he bring me a clear authority.' But he tarried not long, and said, 'I have comprehended that which thou hast not comprehended, and I have come from Sheba to thee with a sure tiding. found a woman ruling over them, and she has been given of everything, and she possesses a mighty throne. I found her and her people prostrating to the sun, apart from God; Satan has decked out fair their deeds to them and he has barred them from the way, and therefore they are not guided, so that they prostrate not themselves to God, who brings forth what is hidden in the heavens and earth; and He knows what you conceal and what you publish. God: there is no god but He, the Lord of the Mighty Throne.' ... So, when she came, it was said, 'Is thy throne like this?' She said, 'It seems the same.' 'And we were given the knowledge before her, and we were in surrender, but that she served, apart from God, barred her, for she was of a people of unbelievers.' S. 27:20-26, 42-43

And of His signs are the night and the day, the sun and the moon. Bow not yourselves to the sun and moon, but bow yourselves to God who created them, if Him you serve. S. 41:37

Rather prostrate yourselves before Allah and serve Him. S. 53:62 Pickthall

The foregoing passages make it obvious that a person is to prostrate to God alone, since prostration entails worship. Thus, the angel's prostration before Adam implies that they were worshiping the creature, something which was commanded by Allah himself! Abualrub tries to justify the worship given to Adam in the Quran by noting that the word for prostration, Sujud, doesn't necessarily mean worship. We will take his examples and respond to them, beginning with a paragraph which was already mentioned above:

As evidence that making Sujud as a matter of tradition was popular during the Prophet's time, al-Bukhari reported that when the Prophet, peace be upon him, sent a messenger to Hercules, the Roman Emperor, Hercules had a lengthy discussion with his advisors about Prophet Muhammad and afterwards, the priests prostrated before Hercules. This occurred in the presence of the Prophet's companion who carried the Prophet's letter to Hercules. The Prophet's companion did not interpret this as an act of worship by the Christian advisors and priests to their Christian king, but as a matter of tradition and habit.

There is an authentic Hadeeth that is directly related to this type of Sujud. W hen [sic] Mu`adh Ibn Jabal, the Prophet's companion, came back from the Sham Area (Syria) to Madinah, he prostrated before the Prophet, peace be upon him, who asked him, " What is this, O, Mu`adh? " Mu`adh said, "I visited the Sham Area and witnessed them prostrate before their priests and patriarchs. I wished to myself that we did the same for you." The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, " Do not do it. However, if I were to order anyone to prostrate before anyone else besides Allah, I would have ordered the wife to prostrate before her husband. " This is an authentic Hadeeth (Prophetic Statement) collected in, Sahih Ibn Majah . The topic of this Hadeeth is, "Making Sujud, as a matter of Islamic Law, to other than Allah". This specific topic was brought to the Prophet's attention, the same Prophet who received the Quran from Allah wherein is mentioned the Sujud of the angels to Adam. Even if the Quran had not elaborated on this topic –yet we proved that it did in the clearest terms- the Prophet himself elaborated on it. He did not say to Mu`adh, "Do not do this, because Sujud is an act of worship and directing any act of worship at other than Allah is Shirk." He did not say, "It is alright to do it, because the angels worshipped Adam as the Quran stated." He, peace be upon him, merely stated that this type of Sujud was prohibited in Islam and that if he were to allow it, he would have ordered the wife to prostrate to her husband. It is not possible that the Prophet, who upheld Islamic Monotheism in its most clear and pure form, would say to his companion, "If I were to order anyone to worship anyone else besides Allah, I would have ordered the wife to worship her husband in Sujud," because this would contradict the essence of Tau`heed which the companions embraced in defiance of Shirk itself. While commenting on this Hadeeth, Imam Ibn Taimiyyah said, "How can it be concluded that prostrating to something indicates worship of it, when the Prophet said…" and he mentioned the Hadeeth above, saying afterwards, "It is known that the Prophet did not say, ‘If I were to order anyone to worship anyone else…'"

Abualrub somehow thinks that this narration proves prostration doesn't mean worship. But the fact that Muhammad didn't command the women to prostrate before their husbands proves the exact opposite of what Abualrub is seeking to show. It shows that, at least from Muhammad's perspective, prostrating oneself before another was an act of worship irrespective of the intention of the person committing the act. Thus, even if the person's intention in bowing was to simply show respect and honor, not to give worship, the act would still not be acceptable from a Muslim perspective. Abualrub basically says the very same thing when he writes:

The type of Sujud that Allah ordered the angels to perform before Adam, as well as, the Sujud that Prophet Ya`qub made to Prophet Yusuf, is a matter of Law (A`hkam, or Shar'ah), not a matter of worship. When Islam came, many of the laws of previous nations were abrogated, among them the Sujud that is to honor kings and leaders. Ever since Islam disallowed it, making any type of Sujud to other than Allah, REGARDLESS OF THE INTENTION BEHIND IT, even if it were to honor kings and leaders as was the tradition before Islam, became prohibited for Muslims. However, we should state, the Angels are not required to follow Islamic Law. For example, the angels do not fast during Ramadhan; the angels do not eat let alone fast from eating. In addition, we should state that prostrating to other creations as a way of honoring or greeting them is disallowed in Islam for those who came after this ruling was revealed, not for those who came before it, and certainly not for the angels.

Lord Jesus willing, we will have a lot more to say about intentions a little later.

Abualrub continues:

Firstly, Wail mentioned this verse, { See you not that whoever is in the heavens and whoever is on the earth, and the sun, and the moon, and the stars, and the mountains, and the trees, and Ad-Dawbb [moving (living) creatures, beasts] , and many of mankind prostrate themselves to Allh }; [22:18]. The context of this Verse is the obedience to Allah's Qadar (Divine Preordainments and Predestination), which is another meaning for Sujud, not prostrating to Allah by placing the face on the ground. Proof: the sun, the moon, the mountains, the trees and the animals do not prostrate in the manner many of mankind and the Jinn and all of the angels willingly prostrate. These things praise Allah in a way that we do not comprehend, { The seven heavens and the earth and all that is therein, glorify Him and there is not a thing but glorifies His Praise. But you understand not their glorification. Truly, He is Ever Forbearing, Oft-Forgiving }; [17:44], and show complete obedience to Allah's appointed destiny and His created laws that govern every aspect of the existence. However, these things, including the animals, do not worship Allah, as Imam Ibn Taimiyyah rightfully stated. Imam Ibn Taimiyyah said, "How can every type of Sujud be disallowed (meaning an act of worship), when the animals, which do not worship Allah , used to make Sujud to Allah's Prophet, peace be upon him?" Imam Ibn Taimiyyah is referring here to a Hadeeth wherein a camel is reported to have made Sujud to the Prophet, peace be upon him, in the presence of the Prophet's companions; [ Sahih at-Targheeb wa-t-Tarheeb (1936)].

Abualrub's comments are brimming with errors. To begin with, surah 22:18 cannot be referring to Allah's decree, or divine preordainment of things, and here is the reason why. Even unbelievers do only that which Allah has decreed, i.e. even the evil they do is determined by Allah beforehand, and yet this verse says that many of mankind prostrate before Allah. If this were referring to the fulfillment of Allah's preordainment of things then the passage should have referenced ALL of mankind, not just many. The fact that it says many (implying that not all do so) shows that this passage has nothing to do with the predestination of all events and acts, thereby showing that Sujud in this context can only be referring to literal worship, to literal prostrating.

This can even be seen from the next ayah commented on by Abualrub, which says:

The seven heavens and the earth and all that is therein, glorify Him and there is not a thing but glorifies His Praise. But you understand not their glorification. Truly, He is Ever Forbearing, Oft-Forgiving

Second, for some strange reason Abualrub thinks that the sun, moon, etc. do not prostrate in a manner similar to the way humans and jinn do. He must have forgotten the following narrations:

Narrated Abu Dharr:
The Prophet asked me at sunset, "Do you know where the sun goes (at the time of sunset)?" I replied, "Allah and His Apostle know better." He said, "It goes (i.e. travels) till it prostrates Itself underneath the Throne and takes the permission to rise again, and it is permitted and then (a time will come when) it will be about to prostrate itself but its prostration will not be accepted, and it will ask permission to go on its course but it will not be permitted, but it will be ordered to return whence it has come and so it will rise in the west. And that is the interpretation of the Statement of Allah: ‘And the sun Runs its fixed course for a term (decreed). That is The Decree of (Allah) The Exalted in Might, The All-Knowing.’" (36.38) (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 54, Number 421)

The translator of Sahih Al-Bukhari, Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan (who happens to be a Salafi Muslim much like Jalal Abualrub), has an interesting footnote here:

The procedure of the sun mentioned in this Hadith and similar other things mentioned in the Qur’an like the prostration of the trees, herbs and stars (V. 55:6) are beyond our limited knowledge of this universe. It is interpreted that these are mentioned so because of the limited understanding of the people at that time about matters of the universe.

Here are a few more:

It was narrated by Muhammad Ibn Tarif, narrated by Muhammad Ibn Fadil, narrated by Abu Hayan, narrated by Atta, narrated by Ibn Umar who said, "We were with the prophet – may Allah’s prayer and peace be upon him – on a journey when we were approached by a Bedouin.

When the prophet saw him he said to him, ‘To where are you heading?’ The Bedouin said, ‘To my family.’ The prophet asked, ‘Do you wish to have a good thing?’ The Bedouin asked, ‘What would that be?’ The prophet replied, ‘To bear witness that there is no god but Allah alone, who has no partners and that Muhammad is His servant and messenger.’

The Bedouin asked, ‘And who will testify to what you say?’ The prophet answered, ‘This tree will.’ So the prophet called to the tree that was in a valley by the seashore and it came to him, crawling on the ground until it stood up right between his hands. So the prophet made the tree say the Shahada three times and then it returned to where it was planted before.

The Bedouin then returned to his people and said, ‘If they follow me I will bring them (to Muhammad) otherwise I will return to him myself." (Sunan Al-Darimi, written by Ibn Kathir, Hadith number 16, Section One: The Introduction, Entry title: "What Allah has graced His prophet with that which causes trees, animals and Jinn to believe in him," translated by AI contributor Dimitrius; Source)

Even trees have the ability to recite the shahada, the Muslim confession of faith!

Narrated Abdullah ibn Mas'ud
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: On the night of my Ascent (Mi'raj) I met Abraham and he said to me: Muhammad, convey my salam to your people and tell them that Paradise is a vast plain of pure soil and sweet water and that its TREES CRY: Holy is Allah, all praise is due to Allah, there is none worthy of worship save Allah, and Allah is Great. Transmitted by Tirmidhi. (Hadith of al-Tirmidhi, Number 439– ALIM CD-ROM Version)

Narrated Aisha
Once when Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) was with a number of the Emigrants and Helpers a camel came and prostrated itself before him. Thereupon his companions said, "Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) beasts and TREES prostrate themselves before you, but we have the greatest right to do so." He replied, "Worship your Lord and honour your brother. If I were to order anyone to prostrate himself before another, I should order a woman to prostrate herself before her husband. If he were to order her to convey stones from a yellow mountain to a black one, or from a black mountain to a white one, it would be incumbent on her to do so." Ahmad transmitted it. (Hadith of al-Tirmidhi, Number 963– ALIM CD-ROM Version)

AbuTalib went to ash-Sham (Syria) accompanied by the Prophet (may Allah bless him) along with some shaykhs of Quraysh. When they came near where the monk was they alighted and loosened their baggage, and the monk came out to them although when they had passed that way previously he had not done so. While they were loosening their baggage the monk began to go about among them till he came and, taking Allah's Messenger (peace be upon him) by the hand, said, "This is the chief of the universe; this is the messenger of the Lord of the universe whom Allah is commissioning as a mercy to the universe." Some shaykhs of Quraysh asked him how he knew, and he replied, "When you came over the hill not a tree or a stone failed to bow in prostration, and they prostrate themselves only before a prophet. I recognize him by the seal of prophecy, like an apple, below the end of his shoulder-blade." He then went and prepared food for them, and when he brought it to them the Prophet (peace be upon him) was looking after the camels, so he told them to send for him. He came with a cloud above him shading him and when he approached the people he found they had gone before him into the shade of a tree. Then when he sat down the shade of the tree inclined over him, and the monk said, "Look how the shade of the tree has inclined over him. I adjure you by Allah to tell me which of you is his guardian." On being told that it was AbuTalib he kept adjuring him to send him back until he did so. AbuBakr sent Bilal along with him and the monk gave him provisions of a bread and olive-oil. Tirmidhi transmitted it. (Hadith of al-Tirmidhi, Number 1534– ALIM CD-ROM Version)

Ibn Kathir, commenting on surah 2:74, noted:

Solid Inanimate Objects possess a certain Degree of Awareness

Some claimed that the Ayat mentioned the stones being humble as a metaphor. However, Ar-Razi, Al-Qurtubi and other Imams said that there is no need for this explanation, because Allah creates this characteristic - humbleness - in stones. For instance, Allah said, ...

<Truly, We did offer Al-Amanah (the trust) to the heavens and the earth, and the mountains, but they declined to bear it and were afraid of it (i.e. afraid of Allah's torment)> (33:72) ...

<The seven heavens and the earth and all that is therein, glorify Him> (17:44) ...

<And the stars and the trees both prostrate themselves (to Allah)> (55:6) ...

<Have they not observed things that Allah has created: (how) their shadows incline> (16:48) ...

<They both said: "We come willingly."> (41:11) ...

<Had We sent down this Qur'an on a mountain> (59:21),

and, ...

<And they will say to their skins, "Why do you testify against us"' They will say: "Allah has caused us to speak."> (41:21).

It is recorded in the Sahih that the Prophet said, ...

<This (Mount Uhud) is a mount that loves us and that we love.>

Similarly, the compassion of the stump of the palm tree for the Prophet as confirmed in authentic narrations. In Sahih Muslim it is recorded that the Prophet said, ...

<I know a stone in Makkah that used to greet me with the Salam before I was sent. I recognize this stone now.>

He said about the Black Stone that, ...

<On the Day of Resurrection it will testify for those who kiss it.>

There are several other texts with this meaning... (Source)

Thus, it is obvious that both the author of the Quran and Muhammad believed that inanimate objects such as trees, stars, sun etc. do literally perform prostration, have emotions, intellect etc.

Abualrub also refers to Ibn Taimiyya's comments that Sujud cannot be classified as worship since animals, specifically a camel, prostrated to Muhammad. In fact, in the above narrations, even trees allegedly prostrated to Muhammad. Abualrub doesn't seem to realize that these narrations, far from clarifying his point, only serve to contradict the Quran since these reports do nothing more than deify Muhammad, exalting him to a status that he didn't deserve. They even contradict the earlier narration from Abualrub where Muhammad forbade a Muslim from prostrating before him:

W hen [sic] Mu`adh Ibn Jabal, the Prophet's companion, came back from the Sham Area (Syria) to Madinah, he prostrated before the Prophet, peace be upon him, who asked him, " What is this, O, Mu`adh? " Mu`adh said, "I visited the Sham Area and witnessed them prostrate before their priests and patriarchs. I wished to myself that we did the same for you." The Prophet, peace be upon him, said, " DO NOT DO IT..."

Muhammad forbade a man from prostrating to him, obviously as a sign of honor and reverence since this Muslim knew not to worship Muhammad, and yet we are suppose to believe that animals and trees were permitted to do so! It is little wonder that the following Muslims accuse people like Abualrub of deifying Muhammad by their extreme devotion and because of narrations that ascribe God-like qualities to him:

But Satan decided that he would rather see the Muslims commemorate the powerless human being Muhammad (7:188, 10:49, 18:110, 41:6, & 72:21), instead of the Living, Eternal, Lord of all creation. Although Verse 33:43 clearly states that God and His angels: support (YUSAL-LOON) all the righteous believers, Satan succeeded in manipulating the Muslim masses into becoming Muhammadans who dedicate most of their worship to the Prophet...

The Muhammadan masses forget all these facts; Satan has hypnotized them into commemorating Muhammad and meditating on his name day and night. THIS IS FLAGRANT IDOL WOR-SHIP that is despised by God, his messenger, and all Muslims (only Muhammadans like it). Verse 30:40 reminds us that God is the one who created us; God is the one who provides for us; God is the one who terminates our lives; God is the one who resurrects us for recompense. None of the idols does any of these things. Thus, the true Muslims commemorate their Almighty Creator, meditate on His glorious names, and proclaim His glory day and night. (Source)

In another article speaking about the Muslim confession of faith, the following author writes:

These exegisists refuse to accept the clear injunctions of the Quran and insist on reiterating their corrupted confession of faith and associating the name of Muhammad with that of God.

In fact, based exclusively on the Quran, the confession of faith as expounded by the exegisists leads to perdition, if only they knew. Ibliss has so adorned their idolatry in their eyes that they are absolutely convinced of the rightness of their ways in spite of the Quran.

... Every day Muhammad is referred to as 'Sayidul mursaleen' (the master of those who were sent by God to guide mankind), how many of these so called believers object? This is blatant differentiation and anyone denying that should be honest with himself and truthful, in view of the gravity of the consequences. Hell is forever. (Source)

Another writer says regarding the belief that Muhammad will intercede for Muslims:

To believe that anyone, other than God, can intercede on our behalf to have our sins forgiven or our wishes fulfilled, is to set up partners with God. This is idolatry. The Quran proclaims that "All intercession belongs to God" (39:44), and that there will be "no intercession on the Day of Judgment" (2:254).

The myth of intercession is one of Satan's most effective tricks to dupe millions of people into idol worship. Millions of Christians believe that Jesus will intercede for them at God, and millions of Muslims believe that Muhammad will intercede on their behalf. Consequently, these people idolize Jesus and Muhammad.

The concept of intercession is utterly illogical. Those who believe in Muhammad's intercession, for example, claim that he will ask God to forgive them and admit them into Paradise. They imagine Muhammad on the Day of Judgment choosing the candidates for his intercession. If you ask those who believe in intercession: "How will Muhammad recognize those who deserve his intercession?" they tell you, "God will tell him!" According to this concept, a person will go to Muhammad and request his intercession. Muhammad will then ask God whether this person deserves his intercession or not. God will inform Muhammad that the person deserves to go to Paradise. Muhammad will then turn around and tell God that the person deserves to go to Paradise! The blasphemy is obvious; those who believe in intercession make God a secretary of their idol Muhammad. God be glorified. (Source)

We are pretty certain that Abualrub will attack these gents as fake Muslims, heretics, who do not represent orthodox Islam. Yet, facts are facts, irrespective of where they come from.

But, Wail did not mention this Verse , { And unto Allh (Alone) falls in prostration whoever is in the heavens and the earth, willingly or unwillingly, and so do their shadows in the mornings and in the afternoons }; [13: 15]. Unlike Verse 22:18, this Verse includes those who do not believe in Islam or the Quran, including Wail himself. Even Wail would not explain this Verse as being in the context of worship, because his fellow Evangelists would protest by saying that they never prostrated even once to Allah. This Verse explains the meaning of the Sujud mentioned in it by saying that it is done either willingly, by many of mankind, or unwillingly, by the non-believers in Allah and all created things and animals. This Verse contained reference in it to the type of Sujud that is an act of worship and to the type of Sujud that is done involuntarily. Those who do not believe in Allah or Islam and would never willingly prostrate to Allah, unwillingly fulfill the destiny that Allah ordained for them, and their shadows prostrate to Allah without their consent: do they not see that their shadow always falls to the ground? Many among mankind willingly prostrate to Allah, and in their case, their Sujud is in the context of worship. Conclusion: contrary to what Wail insinuated, Sujud is not mentioned in the Quran only in the context of worship. In the examples given here, the Quran states that everything, including those who do not believe in Islam or Allah, prostrate to Allah in some manner, even if involuntarily. Therefore, Muslim Scholars are perfectly correct to explain the Sujud of the angels to Adam in the context of greeting and honoring Adam, since ‘Sujud' has different meanings and various contexts. Allah willing, the reader will soon discover our most significant evidence yet to substantiate these facts.

Abualrub assumes that the unbelievers prostrating involuntarily shows that prostration here doesn't mean worship. In his haste, he seems to fail to realize that the whole purpose for even saying that unbelievers' prostrate, albeit unwillingly, is to show that they too are worshiping Allah whether they realize it or not. In other words, the unbelievers do not realize that, even despite their disbelief, they are still worshiping Allah whenever they do the very thing determined for them. Something similar is said in the following verse:

Is it then other than Allah's religion that they seek (to follow), and to Him submits (aslama) whoever is in the heavens and the earth, willingly or UNWILLINGLY, and to Him shall they be returned. S. 3:83 Shakir

Thus, prostrate here can only mean worship, that all things worship Allah since everyone and everything is doing exactly that which has been decreed for them. Abualrub cannot object to this since earlier he said:

... The context of this Verse is the obedience to Allah's Qadar (Divine Preordainments and Predestination), which is another meaning for Sujud, not prostrating to Allah by placing the face on the ground...

Abualrub seems to be confused at this point, since he assumes that unless someone literally prostrates to the ground, then Sujud cannot be classified as worship. On the contrary, since prostration most often implies worship, especially when God is the subject or object, the use of the word in these respective contexts is intended to show how everyone worships Allah, even the unbelievers, by doing that which has been decreed for them. The passage is emphasizing the worship aspect that is associated with the word prostration, not on the literal act of prostration per se.

More importantly, the issue is not whether Sujud in these passages refers to literal prostration. The real issue, which Abualrub obviously missed, is that even in these citations Sujud is being directed to Allah!

Abualrub brings up the following citations to justify the angels' worship of Adam:

Third, Sujud in Yet Another Context in the Qur'n

Allh said, when translated means:

"So the earthquake seized them (people of Prophet Salih), and they lay (dead), prostrate (Jathimeen) in their homes." [7:78];

"And As-Saihah (torment - awful cry) overtook the wrongdoers, so they lay (dead), prostrate (Jathimeen) in their homes. As if they had never lived there. No doubt! Verily, Thamd disbelieved in their Lord. So away with Thamd!" [11:67-8]

And you will see each nation Jathiyah (humbled to their knees; kneeling), each nation will be called to its Record (of deeds) [45:28].

Imam Ibn Hajar al-Asqalani said in his explanation on Sahih al-Bukhari, that, 'Jathin', pertains to sitting on the knees, or kneeling (a type of Sujud). Muslims are anxious: it remains to be seen as to how Wail Taghlibi and the entire community of Evangelists/Shaikhs would explain these Verses and in which context they would kindly place them.

It has become ever so obvious that Abualrub hasn't pondered on his own statements to see if whether they backfire against him. In none of the preceding examples do we find the word Sujud used, but the word jathin instead, so these examples really have no relevance to the meaning of Sujud. But they do prove our point since it shows that the author of the Quran had another word available to him besides the word Sujud, a word which doesn't necessarily imply worship.

This implies that if the author of the Quran wanted to insure that the readers didn't think that angels were worshiping Adam then he could have used jathin as opposed to Sujud. The obvious fact that he didn't use this word in connection with angels worshiping Adam, but used a word which is commonly linked to the worship given to Allah, establishes our case against Abualrub. So we want to personally thank him for proving our case!

Christians are anxious: it remains to be seen how Jalal Abualrub, and the entire community of Shaikhs who think they are scholars of the Holy Bible and Quran, explain how these verses which use jathin actually prove that Sujud doesn't necessarily mean worship. If these citations prove anything, they prove that Sujud does mean worship and that the Quran's author knew that using the word Sujud in these references where peoples were destroyed by Allah would make little sense. The point of these passages is not worship, but the humiliation and destruction of the enemies of Allah, and that is why the word Sujud was not used.

And now we turn to the final argument:

The Quran mentioned another instance wherein some of Allah's righteous slaves made Sujud to some of Allah's righteous slaves. Allah said in the Quran, { And he (Prophet Yusuf [Joseph]) raised his parents to the throne and they fell down before him prostrate. And he said: "O my father (Prophet Ya`qub [Jacob]) ! This is the interpretation of my dream aforetime! My Lord has made it come true! He was indeed good to me, when He took me out of the prison, and brought you (all here) out of the Bedouin-life, after Shaitn (Satan) had sown enmity between me and my brothers. Certainly, my Lord is the Most Courteous and Kind unto whom He wills. Truly, He! Only He is the All-Knowing, the All-Wise" }; [12:100].

These great Prophets of Allah did not perform acts of worship to each other, as Wail insinuates in his Fatwa. Prophet Yusuf said, while affirming Tau`heed, { " And I have followed the religion of my fathers, — Ibrhm (Abraham) , Ishq (Isaac) and Ya‘qb (Jacob) , and never could we attribute any partners whatsoever to Allh" }; [12:38]. And when death came to Prophet Ya`qub, peace be upon him, he said this to his sons, { "What will you worship after me?" They said, "We shall worship your Ilh (God — Allh) the Ilh (God) of your fathers, Ibrhm (Abraham) , Ism‘l (Ishmael) , Ishq (Isaac) , One Ilh (God) , and to Him we submit (in Islm)" }; [2:133]. This is pure Monotheism untainted by the whims and desires of present-day Evangelists, who wish that the Quran would contain contradictions similar to the horrific contradictions that their ‘holy books' contain. All what they were able to bring is an alien idea never contemplated in the Quran or the Prophetic Tradition or preached by any Muslim Scholar.

Surat Yusuf clearly described the reason why Prophet Ya`qub, his wife and eleven children made Sujud to Prophet Yusuf, as follows: ...

Second, this Sujud that Prophet Yusuf received was the direct interpretation of a vision that he saw, before his brothers plotted to kill him, { (Remember) when Ysuf (Joseph) said to his father: "O my father! Verily, I saw (in a dream) eleven stars and the sun and the moon — I saw them prostrating themselves to me." He (the father) said: "O my son! Relate not your vision to your brothers, lest they should arrange a plot against you. Verily, Shaitn (Satan) is to man an open enemy ! Thus will your Lord choose you and teach you the interpretation of dreams (and other things) and perfect His Favor on you and on the offspring of Ya‘qb (Jacob) , as He perfected it on your fathers, Ibrhm (Abraham) and Ishq (Isaac) aforetime! Verily, your Lord is All-Knowing, All-Wise" }; [12:4-6].

Prophet Yusuf saw in a dream that eleven stars and the sun and the moon prostrated before him. His father informed him that his dream meant that Allah had chosen him, meaning, to be a prophet and a king, and to teach him knowledge in the interpretation of dreams. Years after Yusuf told his father about his dream, Allah made it come true: his parents and eleven siblings prostrated before him, because he was the king. Proof: Allah said that after they prostrated before him, Prophet Yusuf said, { "My Lord! You have indeed bestowed on me of the sovereignty, and taught me the interpretation of dreams — the (Only) Creator of the heavens and the earth! You are my Wal (Protector, Helper, God, Lord) in this world and in the Hereafter. Cause me to die as a Muslim, and join me with the righteous" }; [12:101]. Therefore, Prophet Yusuf praised Allah for making him a king; his family prostrated before him because he was the king. Where did the Quran or even the Torah say that when Prophet Ya`qub prostrated before his son, it was an act of worship? Where did the Quran say that every Sujud is an act of worship? What Muslim Scholar preaches making Sujud as an act of worship to other than Allah if, as Wail dreamed, Allah ordered the angels to make Sujud as an act of worship to Adam?

Abualrub thinks that this example of Joseph justifies the worship given to Adam, and further proves his point that prostration doesn't necessarily imply worship. On the contrary, this story serves as another example of the Quran contradicting itself. The passages which we cited at the beginning clearly say that one is to prostate to Allah alone, and yet the Quran provides two examples where creatures bowed before other creatures. Abualrub must assume that these examples are not acts of worship, and does so solely on the assumption that the Quran is the word of Allah and therefore cannot contradict itself. Thus far, none of Abualrub's examples prove that prostration does not mean worship. He simply has assumed this to be the case and then reads back into the Quran the conclusion he seeks to establish.

It is evident that the author of the Quran has taken over a biblical story without realizing the theological ramifications this would have on his position. Within a biblical worldview, Joseph receiving prostration is thoroughly acceptable and does not violate the worship given to God alone. We will have more to say about this in the second part of our rebuttal.

Yet, within the teachings of the Quran, these acts of prostrations are in clear violation of the worship which the Quran says must be given to Allah alone. Abualrub indirectly realizes this since he himself says that ALL acts of prostration to creatures, whether intended as worship or not, are now forbidden in Islam. More on this below.

Another Muslim who sees the problem is Sher Ali, since he translates surah 12:100 in a way where it is not Joseph who receives prostration, but Allah!

And he raised his parents upon the throne and they all fell down prostrate BEFORE ALLAH for him ...

Sher Ali is joined by the late Maulana Muhammad Ali who translates the same passage in the following manner:

And he raised his parents on the throne, and they fall prostrate FOR HIS SAKE ... (Source; capital emphasis ours)

Ali's footnote states:

100b Seeing the highly dignified position to which Joseph had been raised in Egypt, they all fell prostrate BEFORE GOD as a mark of thanksgiving ... (underline and capital emphasis ours)

Both Alis evidently realized the problem with Joseph receiving prostration since it violates the worship which Muslims claim that only Allah receives.

The late Muhammad Asad mentions another Muslim, namely renowned scholar and Muhammad's first cousin Ibn Abbas, who also was obviously troubled with Joseph receiving prostration:

According to `Abd Allah ibn `Abbas (as quoted by Razi), the personal pronoun in "before Him" relates to God, since it is inconceivable that Joseph would have allowed his parents to prostrate themselves before himself. (Asad, The Message of the Qur'an [Dar Al-Andalus Limited 3 Library Ramp, Gibraltar rpt. 1993], p. 353, fn. 98; online edition)

Muhammad Ali went a step further and decided to translate the prostration given to Adam by the angels as submission:

And when We said to the angels, Be SUBMISSIVE to Adam, they SUBMITTED, but Iblis (did not) ... S. 2:34 (Source; capital emphasis ours)

He notes:

34a Sajada is really synonymous with khad'a, i.e. he was lowly or submissive (LL). In the Holy Qur'an, the word is frequently used to signify simple submission. And you will also say, sajadu la-hu meaning he saluted him or he paid respect or honour to him (LL).

Ali quite obviously had a really difficult time with these Quranic passages which have creatures receiving sajda, or worship. Unlike Abualrub, he obviously knew that these acts were clear violations of the pure worship which Islamic theology claims must be given to none but Allah.

Thus, the author of the Quran has the prophets and patriarchs contradicting themselves, and violating the pure worship given to God, since he has them spewing Islamic theology one moment and then worshiping, or permitting the worship of a creature, the next moment.

Summary Analysis

The word sajda, and its derivatives, appear roughly eighty-five times in the Quran.

Prostrating to Allah- 2:58, 125, 149; 3:43, 113; 4:102, 154; 7:120, 161, 206; 13:15; 16:48-49; 17:107; 19:58; 20:70; 22:18, 26, 77; 25:60, 64; 26:46, 219; 32:15; 39:9; 41:37; 50:40; 53:62; 55:6; 68:42-43; 76:26; 84:21; 96:19

Mosque- 2:114, 144, 149-150, 187, 191, 196, 217; 5:2; 7:29, 31; 8:34; 9:7, 17-19, 28, 107-108; 17:1; 18:21; 22:25, 40; 48:25, 27; 72:18

Since Mosques are erected for the worship of Allah alone, the references in the last set of verses really fall under the above category.

Prostrating to Adam- 2:34; 7:11-12; 15:29-33; 17:61; 18:50; 20:116; 38:72-73, 75

Prostrating to Joseph- 12:4, 100

Prostrating to the sun- 27:24-25

In nearly every occurrence, sajda and its derivatives are used in relation to worshiping Allah. In fact, there are only three exceptions to this, with one of these exceptions being in relation to the Queen of Sheba and her people bowing to the sun. Thus, Abualrub wants to argue on the basis of two exceptions, i.e. Adam and Joseph receiving prostration, that Taghlibi was wrong and hiding facts from his readers!

Therefore, the statistical data leads us to the same conclusion that Taghlibi and the following writer came to:

"The story, as a whole, involves a difficult issue. Why did God order all His angels to fall prostrate before a being inferior to them in nature? The manner of prostration is reserved for the worship of God. It was not proper, therefore, to employ it in showing respect to creatures, including Adam. Realizing the problem involved in the use of the term 'Sajda' (prostration) in the passage under discussion, Jalal al-Din made the following observation:

The original word signifies properly, to prostrate one self till the forehead touches the ground, which is the humblest posture of adoration and strictly due to God only; but it is sometimes used to express civil worship or homage which may be paid to creatures. (W.T. Wherry, A Comprehensive Commentary on the Quran, Vol. I, p. 301 [read Wherry's note online; see comments on 2:34])

Despite Jalal al-Din's apology, strictly speaking, 'Sajda' (prostration) is due only to God. That is why the commentator did not support adequately the exception he has made to the rule, from the Koran. The 'Wahhabis,' who consider themselves strict Muslims and true Monotheists, forbid worship of any creature. God alone deserves to be worshipped, according to them. They would not allow 'Sajda' to a civil authority - the kind of prostration which is meant to be used in prayers to God.... Moreover, it is true that strictly speaking prostration before any being other than God is a practice against monotheism and spirit of the Koran, as Wahhabis would say." (Abdiyah Akbar Abdul Haqq, Sharing Your Faith with a Muslim [Bethany House Publishers, Minneapolis, MN 1980], p. 78; bold emphasis ours)

You will occasionally catch a Muslim slipping and forgetting that Allah, in the Quran, commanded his servants to bow and prostrate before other creatures. When this happens you will find that Muslims basically agree with our analysis that, from a purely Islamic perspective, prostrating before a creature is nothing less than idolatry. Note, for instance, the candid admission of the following responses taken from a Salafi website:

Question #13769: Prostrating to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) constitutes disbelief in Allaah (kufr)

Question :

I would like to know what to do. Someone told me that when reciting dhuwa, that i have to prostrate seven times for the prophet[p.b.u.h], but i just don't know how, would you …

Undoubtedly this action is a kind of worship, and the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) warned us against following the Jews and Christians in that. He said during his final illness: "May the curse of Allaah be upon the Jews and Christians, for they took the graves of their Prophets as places of worship." He was warning against doing what they did. (Narrated by al-Bukhaari, al-Salaah, 417)

Prostration is one of the most exclusive acts of worship, TO BE DONE ONLY FOR ALLAAH. Allaah has commanded us to prostrate TO HIM ALONE AND NONE OTHER, as He says (interpretation of the meaning): 

"Prostrate yourselves not to the sun nor to the moon, but prostrate yourselves to Allaah Who created them, if you (really) worship Him"

[Fussilat 41:37]

"So fall you down in prostration to Allaah and worship Him (Alone)"

[al-Najm 53:62]

… As for what is mentioned in the question about prostrating for the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), this is haraam (forbidden) and is major shirk, because prostration MAY ONLY BE DONE FOR ALLAAH. So the Muslim must learn about the matters of his religion from the Qur’aan and Sunnah and from trustworthy scholars; he should ask about everything that he does not understand, so that he will not fall into shirk, Allaah forbid…

Islam Q&A (www.islam-qa.com)   (Source; capital and underline emphasis ours)

And:

Question #10428: Bowing to anyone other than Allaah is haram…

Question :

Is it permisible[sic] to bow while greeting a respectable/elder person/parent Other than saying "As-salam Alaykum Wa-rahmatullahi Wa-barakatuh".

Answer :

Praise be to Allaah.

The usual greeting is "Assalaamu ‘alaykum wa rahmat-Allaahi wa barakaatuhu (Peace be upon you, and the Mercy of Allaah and His Blessings), because Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

"greet one another with a greeting from Allaah (i.e. say: As-Salaamu ‘Alaykum — peace be on you), blessed and good"

[al-Noor 24:61]

The ahaadeeth explain this greeting clearly.

But bowing is not permitted, unless the person being greeted is old and is unable to stand up, or is one of your parents and you do not want to make him or her stand up to shake your hand or embrace you. So if you bow and kiss his head or forehead out of respect for the rights that he has over you, then this is not the kind of bowing that constitutes an act of worship. Undoubtedly bowing is an act of worship towards Allaah, as in rukoo’ (the bowing in prayer), so if that is done without shaking hands or kissing, it is an act of veneration towards that person and is therefore shirk.

Shaykh ‘Abd-Allaah ibn Jibreen. (www.islam-qa.com)   (Source; underline emphasis ours)

Thus, even Muslims when they are not careful in what they write end up agreeing with our analysis of the Quranic and statistical data that prostration to any one besides Allah is outright shirk!


Examining More of Abualrub's Confusion and the Intent behind Prostration

Abualrub makes some comments which, coming from a Muslim, are quite odd. For instance, he writes:

First, it was the habit of those who were BEFORE ISLAM to honor their leaders by prostrating before them; Genesis 43, "26. And when Joseph came home, they brought him the present which was in their hand into the house, and bowed themselves to him to the earth. 27. And he asked them of their welfare, and said, Is your father well, the old man of whom ye spake? Is he yet alive? 28. And they answered, Thy servant our father is in good health, he is yet alive. And they bowed down their heads, and made obeisance", and, 2 Samuel 1, "1. Now it came to pass after the death of Saul, when David was returned from the slaughter of the Amalekites, and David had abode two days in Ziklag; 2. It came even to pass on the third day, that, behold, a man came out of the camp from Saul with his clothes rent, and earth upon his head: and so it was, when he came to David, that he fell to the earth, and did obeisance."

And a little later says:

The type of Sujud that Allah ordered the angels to perform before Adam, as well as, the Sujud that Prophet Ya`qub made to Prophet Yusuf, is a matter of Law (A`hkam, or Shar'ah), not a matter of worship. When Islam came, many of the laws of previous nations were abrogated, among them the Sujud that is to honor kings and leaders. Ever since Islam disallowed it, making any type of Sujud to other than Allah, REGARDLESS OF THE INTENTION BEHIND IT, even if it were to honor kings and leaders as was the tradition BEFORE ISLAM, became prohibited for Muslims. However, we should state, the Angels are not required to follow Islamic Law. For example, the angels do not fast during Ramadhan; the angels do not eat let alone fast from eating. In addition, we should state that prostrating to other creations as a way of honoring or greeting them is disallowed in Islam for those who came after this ruling was revealed, not for those who came before it, and certainly not for the angels.

Here is another place where Abualrub brings up intentions in prostrating:

Unlike the method that Wail used, here is scientific research on the types or ‘various contexts' of Sujud mentioned in the Quran and the evidence establishing each type from the Quran and Hadeeth (Prophetic Tradition). We start by narrating one of the major foundations of Islam that is of great relevance to the topic of this article: the Prophet's Hadeeth, " Actions are tied to the intentions behind them. " This Hadeeth is found in the authentic Hadeeth collections of Imams al-Bukhari and Muslim.

Abualrub speaks of the customs of the people "before Islam" and then proceeds to mention prophets like Joseph, Samuel, David etc. What makes this quite intriguing is that, according to the Quran, all these people were Muslims:

And when Abraham, with Ismael, raised the foundations of the House, they said, "O our Lord! accept it from us; for thou art the Hearer, the Knower. O our Lord! make us also Muslims, and our posterity a Muslim people; and teach us our holy rites, and be turned towards us, for thou art He who turneth, the Merciful." S. 2:127-128 Rodwell

And this to his children did Abraham bequeath, and Jacob also, saying, "O my children! truly God hath chosen a religion for you; so die not unless ye be also Muslims." Were ye present when Jacob was at the point of death? when he said to his sons, "Whom will ye worship when I am gone?" They said, "We will worship thy God and the God of thy fathers Abraham and Ismael and Isaac, one God, and to Him are we Muslims." S. 2:132-133 Rodwell

And when I revealed unto the Apostles, "Believe on me and on my Sent One," they said, "We believe; and bear thou witness that we are Muslims." S. 5:111 Rodwell, cf. 3:52

And strive for Allah with the endeavour which is His right. He hath chosen you and hath not laid upon you in religion any hardship; the faith of your father Abraham (is yours). He hath named you Muslims of old time and in this (Scripture), that the messenger may be a witness against you, and that ye may be witnesses against mankind. So establish worship, pay the poor-due, and hold fast to Allah. He is your Protecting friend. A blessed Patron and a blessed Helper! S. 22:78 Pickthall

So how can these acts of prostration be considered BEFORE ISLAM, when the Quran says that these men were all followers of Islam? Is Abualrub indirectly admitting that the Quran is wrong at this point? Or is this just another example of Abualrub's carelessness and sloppy "scientific research"?

Abualrub is not alone in making the assertion that Islam abrogated the custom of prostrating to others besides Allah. He is simply parroting what other Muslims have said, such as Ibn Kathir who makes the following statements on surah 2:34:

The practice of prostrating was allowed for previous nations, but was repealed for ours. Mu`adh said to the Prophet, "I visited Ash-Sham and found that they used to prostate before their priests and scholars. You, O Messenger of Allah, are more deserving of prostration." The Prophet said, ...

<No. If I was to command any human to prostrate before another human, I would command the wife to prostrate before her husband because of the enormity of his right on her.> (Source)

But if prophets and messengers, whom the Quran claims were already Muslims, could perform acts of prostrations to other human beings then why are such practices disallowed for Muslims today? In fact, we challenge Abualrub to show us any verses from the Quran stating this explicitly. The only references which Abualrub can muster are the ones we mentioned earlier (cf. S. 27:20-26, 42-43; 41:37; 53:62) that speak of prostrating only to God. But these can't help his case, since he is trying to argue tooth and nail that there are different kinds of prostration, and that not all acts of prostrating are necessarily acts of worship. He, therefore, must provide evidence from the Quran stating that at Muhammad's time, the act of prostrating before others besides Allah, even if the intention behind the act is not worship, has been canceled out.

Appealing to the story of Muhammad forbidding a Muslim from prostrating before him won't suffice for the following reasons:

  1. As we had already mentioned, this narration contradicts the Quran since Allah permitted angels to prostrate to Adam, and Joseph allowed his family to bow before him.
  2. Other narrations say that animals and trees prostrated before Muhammad. If these things were allowed to bow before Muhammad, then why couldn't humans do it?
  3. Thus, the combined testimony of the Quran and the hadiths over rule the one narration which says Muhammad forbade a person from prostrating before him.
  4. But we are still left with a contradiction since, according to the Quran, we are to prostrate to no one apart from God, irrespective of the intentions.
  5. In fact, one version of the hadith regarding women prostrating before their husbands suggests that the reason why this isn’t allowed is because prostrating to anyone besides Allah has never been acceptable:

Narrated AbuHurayrah
The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: Had it been permissible that a person may prostrate himself before another, I would have ordered that a wife should prostrate herself before her husband. Transmitted by Tirmidhi. (Hadith of al-Tirmidhi, Number 110- ALIM CD-ROM Version)

Note carefully that Muhammad doesn’t say that because acts of prostration to others besides Allah have now been abrogated, women cannot bow to their husbands. His words imply that prostrating before others was not permitted even before his time.

Abualrub posits a false distinction between worship and law, that the prostration to Joseph was not worship but a matter of law. This essentially ignores the fact that even acts of worship and prostration are all matters of God's laws! It is God's law, command, that humans worship him. In fact, keeping God's law is itself an act of worship!

"Moses summoned all Israel and said: Hear, O Israel, the decrees and laws I declare in your hearing today. Learn them and be sure to follow them. The LORD our God made a covenant with us at Horeb. It was not with our fathers that the LORD made this covenant, but with us, with all of us who are alive here today. The LORD spoke to you face to face out of the fire on the mountain. (At that time I stood between the LORD and you to declare to you the word of the LORD, because you were afraid of the fire and did not go up the mountain.) And he said: 'I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery. You shall have no other gods before me. You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below. You shall not bow down to them or worship them;'" Deuteronomy 5:1-9

"Jesus replied, 'If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching. My Father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him. He who does not love me will not obey my teaching. These words you hear are not my own; they belong to the Father who sent me.'" John 14:23-24

To therefore falsely distinguish between God's law and his worship, as if God's law (i.e., Ahkam or Shariah) doesn't also encompass acts of worship, is simply erroneous to say the least.

This concludes the first part of our rebuttal. Continue with Part 2.


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