Disabusing about the Quran’s adaptation of previous scriptures
In order to review these claims, the following points should be noted: 1. In order to prove this probability it is necessary to prove the following three points: first: the temporal antecedence of Torah to the Quran; second: The similarities between the teachings of these two books; third: The availability of facilities and grounds for the act of transfer and adaptation and its realization.
The first subject is undeniable and the second one is relatively acceptable in some teachings. But, the reason of the similarities, is more general than what has been claimed, because it may be due to the unity of common origins of these two books, i.e. “divine revelation”. The case which many reasons and evidences inside and outside the Quran imply it. Therefore, mere similarity between two books cannot be the reason for adaptation of one of them from the other one. But there is no historical proof and evidence for the third point.
- The Torah and the Bible had not been translated into Arabic in the era of Islam’s advent (Encyclopedia of the Quran, 1.316) and Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) not only was not familiar with Hebrew language, but he was not able to read at all. There is no report in historical sources which shows that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) had any numerous or significant meetings with Christian priests and Jewish rabbis in order to transfer knowledge of testaments, especially during thirteen years that he was in Mecca in which 85 Surahs of Quran was revealed to him. (suyuti, jalaluddin, Al Itghan, 1/194)
- The Quran requested the followers of former divine faiths to present their Scriptures so as Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) prove their distortions and deviations which was reported by Quran. This request shows the Quran’s incompatibility with some texts of testaments at those times, not its adaptation of them. In this regard the Quran explicitly says: قُلْ فَأْتُوا بِالتَّوْرَاةِ فَاتْلُوهَا إِن کُنْتُمْ صَادِقِینَ فَمَنِ افْتَرَى عَلَى اللّهِ الْکَذِبَ مِنْ بَعْدِ ذلِکَ فَأُولئِکَ هُمُ الظَّالِمُونَ : Say: “Bring ye the Law and study it, if ye be men of truth.” If any, after this, invent a lie and attribute it to Allah, they are indeed unjust wrong-doers. (Al-E-Imran: 93-94)
أَمْ لَکُمْ سُلْطَانٌ مُبِینٌ فَأْتُوا بِکِتَابِکُمْ إِن کُنتُمْ صَادِقِینَ : Or have ye an authority manifest? Then bring ye your Book (of authority) if ye be truthful! (As-Saffat: 156-157)
- How can Quran verses be from the Torah and the Bible, while includes many verses about Jewish excommunication and their reprimand in the strongest possible form? For example: لَتَجِدَنَّ أَشَدَّ النَّاسِ عَدَاوَةً لِلَّذِینَ آمَنُوا الْیَهُودَ وَالَّذِینَ أَشْرَکُوا…: Strongest among men in enmity to the believers wilt thou find the Jews and Pagans… (Al-Maeda: 82); یَا أَهْلَ الْکِتَابِ لِمَ تَکْفُرُونَ بِآیَاتِ اللّهِ وَأَنْتُمْ تَشْهَدُونَ : Ye People of the Book! Why reject ye the Signs of Allah, of which ye are (Yourselves) witnesses? (Al-e-Imran: 70)
قُلْ یَا أَهْلَ الْکِتَابِ هَلْ تَنْقِمُونَ مِنَّا إِلَّا أَنْ آمَنَّا بِاللّهِ وَمَا أُنْزِلَ إِلَیْنَا … وَجَعَلَ مِنْهُمُ الْقِرَدَةَ وَالْخَنَازِیرَ وَعَبَدَ الطَّاغُوتَ…: Say: “O people of the Book! Do ye disapprove of us for no other reason than that we believe in Allah, and the revelation that hath come to us and that which came before (us), and (perhaps) that most of you are rebellious and disobedient?” Say: “Shall I point out to you something much worse than this, (as judged) by the treatment it received from Allah? those who incurred the curse of Allah and His wrath, those of whom some He transformed into apes and swine, those who worshipped evil;- these are (many times) worse in rank, and far more astray from the even path!”
When they come to thee, they say: “We believe”: but in fact they enter with a mind against Faith, and they go out with the same but Allah knoweth fully all that they hide. Many of them dost thou see, racing each other in sin and rancour, and their eating of things forbidden. Evil indeed are the things that they do. Why do not the rabbis and the doctors of Law forbid them from their (habit of) uttering sinful words and eating things forbidden? Evil indeed are their works.
The Jews say: “Allah’s hand is tied up.” Be their hands tied up and be they accursed for the (blasphemy) they utter. Nay, both His hands are widely outstretched: He giveth and spendeth (of His bounty) as He pleaseth. But the revelation that cometh to thee from Allah increaseth in most of them their obstinate rebellion and blasphemy. Amongst them we have placed enmity and hatred till the Day of Judgment. Every time they kindle the fire of war, Allah doth extinguish it; but they (ever) strive to do mischief on earth. And Allah loveth not those who do mischief.
If only the People of the Book had believed and been righteous, We should indeed have blotted out their iniquities and admitted them to gardens of bliss. If only they had stood fast by the Law, the Gospel, and all the revelation that was sent to them from their Lord, they would have enjoyed happiness from every side. There is from among them a party on the right course: but many of them follow a course that is evil. (Al-Maeda: 59-66)
Are these verses really taken from Torah?
- Some orientalists who believe that the source and the origin of Quran are Torah and Bible, introduce two persons as the agents of the transfer of the teachings of Torah and Bible: one is “Buhaira the monk” and the other is “waraka ibn naufal”. The following points should be noted about the claim:
- It is mentioned in the history that Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) has a travel to Levant with his uncle Abu Talib when he was nine or twelve. Along the way, in a market called “Basri” their convoy met a monk named Buhaira. The monk said to Abu Talib: I see the signs of prophecy in the face of this child. Protect him. Some historians have named the Waraka instead of Buhaira. (sahih bukhari, beginning of revelation, 1/7)
Due to the briefness of this meeting and considering the childhood of Prophet and the words that had been exchanged between them, and since it is not certain who was the real speaker of the words, Buhaira or Waraka, and due to this fact that Prophet was not alone in this meeting and some other people heard the words and the Prophet and other witnesses of this event did not say anything till about thirty years later (Sobhi Saleh, mabahes-fi-olum-alquran/44-45) and also due to the content of his invitation that criticized and challenged many beliefs of the former divine faiths, How can we deduce that the former scriptures was the source of the Holy Quran?
- The Prophet’s meeting with, Syrian Christian monk, Buhaira, itself, is a famous story but it has no document. Not only Shiite scholars do not accept it, but also some Sunni scholars who mentioned this story in their historical books deny the authenticity of this story. Dr Darraz said that despite his efforts to find strong historical document for the meeting, his efforts were fruitless. Like one of the Orientalists called “Huart” who also stated his efforts in this subject had no result. ((Javadi Amoli, Abdullah, Quran in the Quran / 319, Zamani, Muhammad Hassan, orientalists and the Quran / 148).
- Prophet Muhammad’s enemies among the followers of former divine faiths and the polytheists who used every trick to hurt the Prophet and the Quran have not mentioned anything about this meeting. If they had mentioned about it, the Quran would have shown reaction surely, as it showed reaction when the polytheists slandered the prophet that he probably learned some verses of Quran from “Jabar Rumi” the slave of “Amr Ibn Hadrami” or “Yasar” who used to make swords in Mecca. (Nasiri, Ali, “Mutual connection between the book and Sunnah”/48-55; Subhi Salih, Mabahith Fi Ulum Al-Quran/ 44-45)
وَلَقَدْ نَعْلَمُ أَنَّهُمْ یَقُولُونَ إِنَّمَا یُعَلِّمُهُ بَشَرٌ لِّسَانُ الَّذِی یُلْحِدُونَ إِلَیْهِ أَعْجَمِیٌّ وَهذَا لِسَانٌ عَرَبِیٌّ مُبِینٌ…) : We know indeed that they say, “It is a man that teaches him.” The tongue of him they wickedly point to is notably foreign, while this is Arabic, pure and clear. Those who believe not in the Signs of Allah,- Allah will not guide them, and theirs will be a grievous Penalty. It is those who believe not in the Signs of Allah, that forge falsehood: it is they who lie! (Al-Nahl: 103-105)