The Quran claims that messengers were sent to their own people proclaiming the Message in their native tongue:
"Then after him (Noah) We sent (many) messengers to their peoples: they brought them Clear Signs, but they would not believe what they had already rejected beforehand. Thus do We seal the hearts of the transgressors." S. 10:74
"And We never sent a messenger save with the language of his folk, that he might make (the message) clear for them. Then Allah sendeth whom He will astray, and guideth whom He will. He is the Mighty, the Wise." S. 14:4 Pickthall
"Verily We sent before thee (Muhammad) messengers to their own folk. Then we took vengeance upon those who were guilty (in regard to them). To help believers is ever incumbent upon Us." S. 30:47 Pickthall
Here are Ibn Kathir's comments regarding S. 14:4:
Every Prophet was sent with the Language of his People; Guidance or Misguidance follows the Explanation.
Allah is Kind and Compassionate with His creation, sending Messengers to them from among them and speaking their language, so that they are able to understand the Message that the Messengers were sent with ...
<the All-Wise> in His decisions, misleading those who deserve to be misled and guiding those who deserve guidance. This is from Allah's wisdom with His creation, every Prophet He sent to a people SPOKE THEIR LANGUAGE and every one of these Prophets WERE ONLY SENT TO THEIR PEOPLE. Muhammad bin Abdullah, Allah's Messenger, peace and blessings be upon him, was sent to all people. It is recorded IN THE TWO SAHIHS that Jabir said that the Messenger of Allah said, ...
((I have been given five things which were not given to anyone else before me. Allah made me victorious by awe, (by His frightening my enemies) for a distance of one month's journey. The earth has been made for me (and for my followers) a place for worship and a purifier. The war booty has been made lawful for me and it was not lawful for anyone else before me. I have been given the right of Intercession (on the Day of Resurrection). EVERY PROPHET USED TO BE SENT TO HIS NATION ONLY, but I have been sent to all mankind.)) Allah said, ...
<Say: "O mankind! Verily, I am sent to you all as the Messenger of Allah ...> [7:158] (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Abridged, Volume 5, Surah Hud to Surat Al-Isra, Verse 38, abridged by a group of scholars under the supervision of Shaykh Safiur-Rahman Al-Mubarakpuri [Darussalam Publishers & Distributors, Riyadh, Houston, New York, Lahore; First Edition: July 2000], pp. 309-310; bold capital emphasis ours)
Yet this contradicts both the Holy Bible and the Quran. Both the Holy Bible and the Quran mention the story of the prophet Jonah son of Amittai, called Yunus in the Quran. Jonah was an Israelite who was sent to the Assyrians in Nineveh:
"The word of the Lord came to Jonah son of Amittai: Go to the great city of Nineveh and preach against it, because its wickedness has come up before me ... So they asked him, Tell us, who is responsible for making all this trouble for us? What do you do? Where do you come from? What is your country? From what people are you? He answered, I am a Hebrew and I worship the Lord, the God of heaven, who made the sea and the land. This terrified them and they asked, What have you done? (They knew he was running away from the Lord, because he had already told them so.)" Jonah 1:1-2, 8-10
"He was the one who restored the boundaries of Israel from Lebo Hamath to the Sea of the Arabah, in accordance with the word of the Lord , the God of Israel, spoken through his servant Jonah son of Amittai, the prophet from Gath Hepher." 2 Kings 14:25
"The third lot came up for Zebulun, clan by clan: The boundary of their inheritance went as far as Sarid. Going west it ran to Maralah, touched Dabbesheth, and extended to the ravine near Jokneam. It turned east from Sarid toward the sunrise to the territory of Kisloth Tabor and went on to Daberath and up to Japhia. Then it continued eastward to Gath Hepher and Eth Kazin; it came out at Rimmon and turned toward Neah. There the boundary went around on the north to Hannathon and ended at the Valley of Iphtah El. Included were Kattath, Nahalal, Shimron, Idalah and Bethlehem. There were twelve towns and their villages. These towns and their villages were the inheritance of Zebulun, clan by clan. Joshua 19:10-15
This indicates that Jonah was perhaps from the tribe of Zebulun, son of Jacob.
The Quran and the Islamic traditions agree on Jonah being sent to Nineveh:
If only there had been a single township (among those We warned), which believed,- so its faith should have profited it,- except the People of Jonah? When they believed, We removed from them the Chastisement of Ignominy in the life of the present, and permitted them to enjoy (their life) for a while. S. 10:98
And remember Zunnün, when he departed in wrath: He imagined that We had no power over him! But he cried through the depths of darkness, "There is no god but Thou: glory to Thee: I was indeed wrong!" So We listened to him: and delivered him from distress: and thus do We deliver those who have faith. S. 21:87-88
So also was Jonah among those sent (by Us). When he ran away (like a slave from captivity) to the ship (fully) laden, He (agreed to) cast lots, and he was of the rebutted: Then the big Fish did swallow him, and he had done acts worthy of blame. Had it not been that he (repented and) glorified Allah, He would certainly have remained inside the Fish till the Day of Resurrection. But We cast him forth on the naked shore in a state of sickness, And We caused to grow, over him, a spreading plant of the gourd kind. And We sent him (on a mission) to a hundred thousand (men) or more. And they believed; so We permitted them to enjoy (their life) for a while. S. 37:139-148
Here is Ibn Kathir on S. 10:98:
"... The point is that between Musa and Yunus, there was no nation in its entirety that believed except the people of Yunus, the people of Naynawa (Nineveh). And they only believed because they feared that the torment from which their Messenger warned them, might strike them. They actually witnessed its signs. So they cried to Allah and asked for help. They engaged in humility in invoking Him. They brought their children and cattle and asked Allah to lift the torment from which their Prophet had warned them. As a result, Allah sent down His mercy and removed the scourge from them and gave them respite.
... In interpreting this Ayah, Qatadah said: No town has denied the truth and then believed when they saw the scourge, and then their belief benefited them, with the exception of the people of Yunus. When they lost their prophet and they thought that the scourge was close upon them, Allah sent through their hearts the desire to repent. So they wore woolen fabrics and they separated each animal from its offspring. They then cried out to Allah for forty nights. When Allah saw the truth in their hearts and that they were sincere in their repentance and regrets, He removed the scourge from them. Qatadah said: It is mentioned that the people of Yunus were in Naynawa, the land of Mosul. This was also reported from Ibn Mas'ud, Mujahid, Sai'd bin Jubayr and others from the Salaf." (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Abridged, Volume 4, Surat Al-Araf to the end of Surah Yunus, first edition May 2000, p. 660; bold emphasis ours)
And also Ibn Kathir's comments on S. 21:87-88:
This story is mentioned here, and in Surat As-Saffat and Surah Nun. Yunus bin Matta, upon him be peace, was sent by Allah to the people of Nineveh, which was a town in the area of Mawsil [in northern Iraq] ... (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Abridged, Volume 6, Surat Al-Isra', Verse 39 to the end of Surat Al-Mu'minun, first edition July 2000, p. 481; bold emphasis ours)
Interestingly, the hadiths have Muhammad naming Jonah as the son of Amittai:
Narrated Ibn 'Abbas:
The Prophet said, "One should not say that I am better than Jonah (i.e. Yunus) bin Matta." So, he mentioned his father Matta. The Prophet mentioned the night of his Ascension and said, "The prophet Moses was brown, a tall person as if from the people of the tribe of Shanu'a. Jesus was a curly-haired man of moderate height." He also mentioned Malik, the gate-keeper of the (Hell) Fire, and Ad-Dajjal. (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 55, Number 608)
Narrated Ibn 'Abbas:
The Prophet said that his Lord said: "It does not befit a slave that he should say that he is better than Jonah (Yunus) bin Matta." (Sahih Al-Bukhari, Volume 9, Book 93, Number 630)
Ibn Sa'd, presenting a list of the Prophets' genealogies, writes:
... Yunus Ibn Matta from the family of Ya'qub Ibn Ishaq Ibn Ibrahim ... (Sa'd, Kitab Al-Tabaqat Al-Kabir, Volume I, parts I & II, English translation by S. Moinul Haq, M.A., PH.D assisted by H.K. Ghazanfar M.A. [Kitab Bhavan Exporters & Importers, 1784 Kalan Mahal, Daryaganj, New Delhi - 110 002 India], p. 48; bold emphasis ours)
Ya'qub, Ishaq and Ibrahim are Arabic for Jacob, Isaac and Abraham.
This leaves absolutely no doubt that this is the same Jonah referred to in the Holy Bible. This being the case, Allah is wrong for claiming that Messengers were sent to their own folk teaching in the language of their people. The Assyrians were not Jonah's people, nor did they speak the same language as the following passage demonstrates:
"The king of Assyria sent his supreme commander, his chief officer and his field commander with a large army, from Lachish to King Hezekiah at Jerusalem. They came up to Jerusalem and stopped at the aqueduct of the Upper Pool, on the road to the Washerman's Field. They called for the king; and Eliakim son of Hilkiah the palace administrator, Shebna the secretary, and Joah son of Asaph the recorder went out to them. The field commander said to them, Tell Hezekiah: "This is what the great king, the king of Assyria, says: On what are you basing this confidence of yours? You say you have strategy and military strength - but you speak only empty words. On whom are you depending, that you rebel against me? Look now, you are depending on Egypt, that splintered reed of a staff, which pierces a man's hand and wounds him if he leans on it! Such is Pharaoh king of Egypt to all who depend on him. And if you say to me, We are depending on the Lord our God - isn't he the one whose high places and altars Hezekiah removed, saying to Judah and Jerusalem, You must worship before this altar in Jerusalem?" Come now, make a bargain with my master, the king of Assyria: I will give you two thousand horses - if you can put riders on them! How can you repulse one officer of the least of my master's officials, even though you are depending on Egypt for chariots and horsemen? Furthermore, have I come to attack and destroy this place without word from the Lord? The Lord himself told me to march against this country and destroy it. Then Eliakim son of Hilkiah, and Shebna and Joah said to the field commander, Please speak to your servants in Aramaic, since we understand it. Don't speak to us in Hebrew in the hearing of the people on the wall." 2 Kings 18:17-26
The Qur'an again contradicts itself and the Bible confirming that the Quran is not the word of God.
Contradictions in the Qur'an
Answering Islam Home Page