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Chapter 11

Facts of History

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11/1  Historical Approach

    The Holy Qur’an repeatedly incites people to travel the earth in order to discover the relics of previous nations and to inductively consider history and Allah’s ways. This methodology was not attained by historians until the end of the eighteenth century and the beginning of the nineteenth century, with the discoveries of the lost city of Troy and the Rosetta Stone. Henceforth, the gates of historical knowledge opened wide.

      Consider the following Qur’anic verses:

]وَلَقَدْ بَعَثْنَا فِي كُلِّ أُمَّةٍ رَسُولاً أَنِ اُعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ وَاجْتَنِبُوا الطَّاغُوتَ فَمِنْهُمْ مَنْ هَدَى اللَّهُ وَمِنْهُمْ مَنْ حَقَّتْ عَلَيْهِ الضَّلاَلَةُ فَسِيرُوا فِي الأَرْضِ
فَانْظُرُوا كَيْفَ كَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الْمُكَذِّبِينَ

Meaning: And verily, We have sent among every Ummah (community, nation) a Messenger (proclaiming): "Worship Allah (Alone), and avoid (or keep away from) Taghut (all false deities)." Then of them were some whom Allah guided and of them were some upon whom the straying was justified. So travel through the earth and see what was the end of those who denied (the truth). (Surah An-Nahl – Verse No. 36)

]أَوَلَمْ يَسِيرُوا فِي الأَرْضِ فَيَنْظُرُوا كَيْفَ كَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الَّذِينَ مِنْ قَبْلِهِمْ كَانُوا أَشَدَّ مِنْهُمْ قُوَّةً وَأَثَارُوا الأَرْضَ وَعَمَرُوهَا أَكْثَرَ مِمَّا عَمَرُوهَا وَجَاءَتْهُمْ رُسُلُهُمْ بِالْبَيِّنَاتِ فَمَا كَانَ اللَّهُ لِيَظْلِمَهُمْ وَلَكِنْ كَانُوا أَنْفُسَهُمْ يَظْلِمُونَ[

Meaning: Do they not travel in the earth, and see what was the end of those before them? They were superior to them in strength, and they untiled the earth and populated it in greater numbers than these (pagans) have done, and there came to them their Messengers with clear proofs. Surely, Allah wronged them not, but they used to wrong themselves. (Surah Ar-Rum – Verse No. 9)

]وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَا مِنْ قَبْلِكَ إِلآَّ رِجَالاً نُوحِي إِلَيْهِمْ مِنْ أَهْلِ الْقُرَى أَفَلَمْ يَسِيرُوا فِي الأَرْضِ فَيَنْظُرُوا كَيْفَ كَانَ عَاقِبَةُ الَّذِينَ مِنْ قَبْلِهِمْ
الآخِرَةِ خَيْرٌ لِلَّذِينَ اتَّقَوْا أَفَلاَ تَعْقِلُونَ

Meaning: And We sent not before you (as Messengers) any but men, whom We inspired from among the people of townships. Have they not travelled through the earth and seen what was the end of those who were before them? And verily, the home of the Hereafter is the best for those who fear Allah and obey Him (by abstaining from sins and evil deeds, and by performing righteous good deeds). Do you not then understand? (Surah Yusuf – Verse No. 109)

]وَإِنَّكُمْ لَتَمُرُّونَ عَلَيْهِمْ مُصْبِحِينَ * وَبِاللَّيْلِ أَفَلاَ تَعْقِلُونَ[

Meaning: Verily, you pass by them in the morning. And at night; will you not then reflect? (138)” (Surah As-Saffat – Verses Nos. 137 - 138)

     See also: (Surah Al-`Imran – Verse No. 137), (Surah Al-An`am – Verse No. 11), (Surah An-Naml – Verse No. 69), (Surah Ar-Rum – Verse No. 42), (Surah Fatir – Verse No. 44), and (Surah Ghafir – Verse No. 82).

 11/2 Natural History    

     This is the study of the historical development of the earth’s geological layers, and the history of life on earth and also under the seas. It relies on excavations all over the world to search for, examine, and analyze ancient remains; utilizing scientific methods such as microscopic examination, carbon dating, etc. This affirms the Qur’anic verse that combines Allah’s ability to initiate creation and then to repeat it again on the Day of Resurrection:

]قُلْ سِيرُوا فِي الأَرْضِ فَانْظُرُوا كَيْفَ بَدَأَ الْخَلْقَ ثُمَّ اللَّهُ يُنْشِئُ النَّشْأَةَ الآخِرَةَ إِنَّ اللَّهَ عَلَى كُلِّ شَيْءٍ قَدِيرٌ[

Meaning: Say: "Travel in the earth and and see how (Allah) originated creation, and then Allah will bring forth (resurrect) the creation of the Hereafter (i.e. resurrection after death). Verily, Allah is Able to do all things. (Surah Al-`Ankabut – Verse No. 20)  

11/3 The Pharaoh of Exodus

     The eventful history of the ancient Egyptians had declined by the end of last pharaonic dynasty. Following this was the Greek invasion of Egypt, followed by the Romans. History drew a curtain over the events of this time with the ruin of cities, the fire in the Alexandrian library, and some other factors. Only a few of the historical events of that period were mentioned in manuscripts, such as the history of Herodotus. So the history of this period remained a secret, inscribed on the pharaonic tombs and on the walls of the remaining temples and obelisks, in a language whose hieroglyphics were only understood at the beginning of the twentieth century, with the discovery of the Rosetta Stone. More of this history was revealed at the beginning of the twentieth century, with the discovery of the mummies of the pharaohs and the accompanying buried treasures. With these discoveries, the whole world learned that the ancient Egyptians had been enthusiastic about embalming dead bodies, especially those of their kings and nobles, believing that embalming ensured their resurrection and perpetuity. The history of the pharaonic period revealed more of the exactness of the Qur’anic knowledge, the word of the All-Knowing Creator, following the discovery that the corpse of the Pharaoh of Exodus had remained intact after he drowned while chasing the Prophet of Allah, Musa (Moses) (peace be upon him) and his Israelite followers:

]وَجَاوَزْنَا بِبَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ الْبَحْرَ فَأَتْبَعَهُمْ فِرْعَوْنُ وَجُنُودُهُ بَغْيًا وَعَدْوًا حَتَّى إِذَا أَدْرَكَهُ الْغَرَقُ قالَ ءَامَنْتُ أَنَّهُ لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ الَّذِي ءَامَنَتْ بِهِ بَنُو إِسْرَائِيلَ وَأَنَا مِنَ الْمُسْلِمِينَ * الآنَ وَقَدْ عَصَيْتَ قَبْلُ وَكُنْتَ مِنَ الْمُفْسِدِينَ * فَالْيَوْمَ نُنَجِّيكَ بِبَدَنِكَ لِتَكُونَ لِمَنْ خَلْفَكَ ءَايَةً وَإِنَّ كَثِيرًا مِنَ النَّاسِ عَنْ ءَايَاتِنَا لَغَافِلُونَ[

Meaning: And We took the Children of Israel across the sea, and Fir'awn (Pharaoh) with his hosts followed them in oppression and enmity, until when drowning overtook him, he said: "I believe that there is no god except He in Whom the Children of Israel believe, and I am one of the Muslims (those who submit to Allah's Will).” “Now (you believe) while you refused to believe before and you were one of the corruptors.” So this day We shall deliver your (dead) body (out from the sea) that you may be a sign to those who come after you! And verily, many among mankind are heedless of Our signs.” (Surah Yunus – Verses Nos. 90 - 92)

      Undoubtedly, Pharaoh's body was taken out of the water after the chase had ended and his army had been defeated, in order to be embalmed as the corpses of the previous pharaohs had all been. All these embalmed bodies have been discovered one after the other by the archeologists. Their studies say that Pharaoh was Merneptah, who ruled from 1231-1220 B.C. and whose mummy is kept in the Egyptian Museum in Cairo. There are other viewpoints that consider Thutmose III to be the Pharaoh (1501-1447 B.C.). Whoever Pharaoh was, his dead body has been embalmed and remains a lesson for generations. In earlier times, no one knew that the dead bodies of the pharaohs had been embalmed and that they would be discovered in the preceding times. This is a specific proof of the truthfulness of the Great Qur’an.

 11/4 The Torah and the Gospels

     Allah, the Exalted, revealed to His illiterate Prophet (peace be upon him) some Qur’anic verses that affirmed the fact that the sources of the previous scriptures had been lost and hidden, and that their laws were changed by the Jewish rabbis and the Christian monks:

]أَفَتَطْمَعُونَ أَنْ يُؤْمِنُوا لَكُمْ وَقَدْ كَانَ فَرِيقٌ مِنْهُمْ يَسْمَعُونَ كَلاَمَ اللَّهِ ثُمَّ يُحَرِّفُونَهُ مِنْ بَعْدِ مَا عَقَلُوهُ وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُونَ[

Meaning: Do you (faithful believers) covet that they will believe in your religion in spite of the fact that a party of them used to hear the Word of Allah, then they used to change it knowingly after they understood it? (Surah Al-Baqarah – Verse No. 75)

]فَوَيْلٌ لِلَّذِينَ يَكْتُبُونَ الْكِتَابَ بِأَيْدِيهِمْ ثُمَّ يَقُولُونَ هَذَا مِنْ عِنْدِ اللَّهِ لِيَشْتَرُوا بِهِ ثَمَنًا قَلِيلاً
فَوَيْلٌ لَهُمْ مِمَّا كَتَبَتْ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَوَيْلٌ لَهُمْ مِمَّا يَكْسِبُونَ

Meaning: Then woe to those who write the Book with their own hands and then say, "This is from Allah," to purchase with it a little price! Woe to them for what their hands have written and woe to them for that they earn thereby. (Surah Al-Baqarah – Verse No. 79)

]الَّذِينَ ءَاتَيْنَاهُمُ الْكِتَابَ يَعْرِفُونَهُ كَمَا يَعْرِفُونَ أَبْنَاءَهُمْ وَإِنَّ فَرِيقًا مِنْهُمْ لَيَكْتُمُونَ الْحَقَّ وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُونَ[

Meaning: Those to whom We gave the Scripture (Jews and Christians) recognise him as they recongize their sons. But verily, a party of them conceal the truth while they know it. (Surah Al-Baqarah – Verse No. 146)

]إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يَكْتُمُونَ مَا أَنْزَلْنَا مِنَ الْبَيِّنَاتِ وَالْهُدَى مِنْ بَعْدِ مَا بَيَّنَّاهُ لِلنَّاسِ فِي الْكِتَابِ
أُولَئِكَ يَلْعَنُهُمُ اللَّهُ وَيَلْعَنُهُمُ اللاَعِنُونَ

Meaning: Verily, those who conceal the clear proofs, evidences and the guidance, which We have sent down, after We have made it evident to mankind, they are the ones cursed by Allah and cursed by the cursers. (Surah Al-Baqarah – Verse No. 159)

]إِنَّ الَّذِينَ يَكْتُمُونَ مَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ وَيَشْتَرُونَ بِهِ ثَمَنًا قَلِيلاً
أُولَئِكَ مَا يَأْكُلُونَ فِي بُطُونِهِمْ إِلاَّ النَّارَ وَلاَ يُكَلِّمُهُمُ اللَّهُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ وَلاَ يُزَكِّيهِمْ وَلَهُمْ عَذَابٌ أَلِيمٌ

Meaning: Verily, those who conceal what Allah has sent down of the Book, and purchase a small gain therewith (of worldly things), they eat into their bellies nothing but fire. Allah will not speak to them on the Day of Resurrection, nor purify them, and theirs will be a painful torment. (Surah Al-Baqarah – Verse No. 174)

]ذَلِكَ بِأَنَّ اللَّهَ نَزَّلَ الْكِتَابَ بِالْحَقِّ وَإِنَّ الَّذِينَ اخْتَلَفُوا فِي الْكِتَابِ لَفِي شِقَاقٍ بَعِيدٍ[

Meaning: That is because Allah has sent down the Book (the Qur'an) in truth. And verily, those who disputed as regards the Book are far away in opposition. (Surah Al-Baqarah – Verse No. 176)

]إِنَّ الدِّينَ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ الإِسْلاَمُ وَمَا اخْتَلَفَ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ إِلاَّ مِنْ بَعْدِ مَا جَاءَهُمُ الْعِلْمُ بَغْيًا بَيْنَهُمْ
وَمَنْ يَكْفُرْ بِآيَاتِ اللَّهِ فَإِنَّ اللَّهَ سَرِيعُ الْحِسَابِ

Meaning: Truly, the religion with Allah is Islam. Those who were given the Scripture (Jews and Christians) did not differ except, out of mutual jealousy, after knowledge had come to them. And whoever disbelieves in the signs of Allah, then surely, Allah is Swift in calling to account. (Surah Al-`Imran – Verse No. 19)

]يَاأَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ لِمَ تَلْبِسُونَ الْحَقَّ بِالْبَاطِلِ وَتَكْتُمُونَ الْحَقَّ وَأَنْتُمْ تَعْلَمُونَ[

Meaning: O people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians): "Why do you mix truth with falsehood and conceal the truth while you know? (Surah Al-`Imran – Verse No. 71)

]وَإِنَّ مِنْهُمْ لَفَرِيقًا يَلْوُونَ أَلْسِنَتَهُمْ بِالْكِتَابِ لِتَحْسَبُوهُ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ وَمَا هُوَ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ وَيَقُولُونَ هُوَ مِنْ عِنْدِ اللَّهِ وَمَا هُوَ مِنْ عِنْدِ اللَّهِ وَيَقُولُونَ عَلَى اللَّهِ الْكَذِبَ وَهُمْ يَعْلَمُونَ[

Meaning: And verily, among them is a party who distort the Book with their tongues (as they read), so that you may think it is from the Book, but it is not from the Book, and they say: "This is from Allah," but it is not from Allah; and they speak a lie against Allah while they know it. (Surah Al-`Imran – Verse No. 78)

]كُلُّ الطَّعَامِ كَانَ حِلاًّ لِبَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ إِلاَّ مَا حَرَّمَ إِسْرَائِيلُ عَلَى نَفْسِهِ مِنْ قَبْلِ أَنْ تُنَزَّلَ التَّوْرَاةُ
قُلْ فَأْتُوا بِالتَّوْرَاةِ فَاتْلُوهَا إِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَادِقِينَ

Meaning: All food was lawful to the Children of Israel, except what Israel made unlawful for himself before the Tawrah (Torah) was revealed. Say (O Muhammad SAW): "Bring here the Tawrah (Torah) and recite it, if you are truthful. (Surah Al-`Imran – Verse No. 93)

]وَإِذْ أَخَذَ اللَّهُ مِيثَاقَ الَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ لَتُبَيِّنُنَّهُ لِلنَّاسِ وَلاَ تَكْتُمُونَهُ فَنَبَذُوهُ وَرَاءَ ظُهُورِهِمْ
وَاشْتَرَوْا بِهِ ثَمَنًا قَلِيلاً فَبِئْسَ مَا يَشْتَرُونَ

Meaning: (And remember) when Allah took a covenant from those who were given the Scripture (Jews and Christians) to make it known and clear to mankind, and not to hide it, but they threw it away behind their backs, and purchased with it some miserable gain! And indeed worst is that which they bought. (Surah Al-`Imran – Verse No. 187)

]مِنَ الَّذِينَ هَادُوا يُحَرِّفُونَ الْكَلِمَ عَنْ مَوَاضِعِهِ وَيَقُولُونَ سَمِعْنَا وَعَصَيْنَا وَاسْمَعْ غَيْرَ مُسْمَعٍ وَرَاعِنَا لَيًّا بِأَلْسِنَتِهِمْ وَطَعْنًا فِي الدِّينِ وَلَوْ أَنَّهُمْ قَالُوا سَمِعْنَا وَأَطَعْنَا وَاسْمَعْ وَانْظُرْنَا لَكَانَ خَيْرًا لَهُمْ وَأَقْوَمَ وَلَكِنْ لَعَنَهُمُ اللَّهُ بِكُفْرِهِمْ
فَلاَ يُؤْمِنُونَ إِلاَّ قَلِيلاً

Meaning: (Some) of (the ones) who have Judaized pervert the Wordings from their (original) meanings and say, “We have heard and we disobey,” and’ “Give ear without being made to hear,” and, “Ra’ina (in Arabic: Heed us, but in Hebrew it is a derisive connotation),” twisting with their tongues and discrediting the religion. And if they said, “We have heard and we obey,” and, “Give ear,” and, “Look at us,” it would have been more charitable for them and more upright; but Allah has cursed them for their disbelief, so they do not believe except a few. (Surah An-Nisa’ – Verse No. 46)

]يَاأَهْلَ الْكِتَابِ قَدْ جَاءَكُمْ رَسُولُنَا يُبَيِّنُ لَكُمْ كَثِيرًا مِمَّا كُنْتُمْ تُخْفُونَ مِنَ الْكِتَابِ وَيَعْفُو عَنْ كَثِيرٍ
جَاءَكُمْ مِنَ اللَّهِ نُورٌ وَكِتَابٌ مُبِينٌ

Meaning: O you Population of the Book, our Messenger has already come up to you; he makes evident to you many things you have been concealing of the Book, and he is clement about many things. A light has already come up to you from Allah, and an evident Book.  (Surah Al-Ma’idah – Verse No. 15)

]يَاأَيُّهَا الرَّسُولُ لاَ يَحْزُنْكَ الَّذِينَ يُسَارِعُونَ فِي الْكُفْرِ مِنَ الَّذِينَ قَالُوا ءَامَنَّا بِأَفْوَاهِهِمْ وَلَمْ تُؤْمِنْ قُلُوبُهُمْ وَمِنَ الَّذِينَ هَادُوا سَمَّاعُونَ لِلْكَذِبِ سَمَّاعُونَ لِقَوْمٍ ءَاخَرِينَ لَمْ يَأْتُوكَ يُحَرِّفُونَ الْكَلِمَ مِنْ بَعْدِ مَوَاضِعِهِ يَقُولُونَ إِنْ أُوتِيتُمْ هَذَا فَخُذُوهُ وَإِنْ لَمْ تُؤْتَوْهُ فَاحْذَرُوا وَمَنْ يُرِدِ اللَّهُ فِتْنَتَهُ فَلَنْ تَمْلِكَ لَهُ مِنَ اللَّهِ شَيْئًا أُولَئِكَ الَّذِينَ لَمْ يُرِدِ اللَّهُ
أَنْ يُطَهِّرَ قُلُوبَهُمْ لَهُمْ فِي الدُّنْيَا خِزْيٌ وَلَهُمْ فِي الآخِرَةِ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ

Meaning: O Messenger (Muhammad SAW)! Let not those who hurry to fall into disbelief grieve you, of such who say: "We believe" with `their mouths but their hearts have no faith. And of the Jews are men who listen much and eagerly to lies - listen to others who have not come to you perverting the wordings from their original meanings; they say, "If you are given this, take it, but if you are not given this, then beware!" And whomsoever Allah wills to (subject to) temptation, then you will never possess for him anything against Allah. Those are the ones whose hearts Allah does not want to purify (from disbelief and hypocrisy); for them there is a disgrace in this world, and in the Hereafter a great torment. (Surah Al-Ma’idah – Verse No. 41)

]وَمَا قَدَرُوا اللَّهَ حَقَّ قَدْرِهِ إِذْ قَالُوا مَا أَنْزَلَ اللَّهُ عَلَى بَشَرٍ مِنْ شَيْءٍ قُلْ مَنْ أَنْزَلَ الْكِتَابَ الَّذِي جَاءَ بِهِ مُوسَى نُورًا وَهُدًى لِلنَّاسِ تَجْعَلُونَهُ قَرَاطِيسَ تُبْدُونَهَا وَتُخْفُونَ كَثِيرًا وَعُلِّمْتُمْ مَا لَمْ تَعْلَمُوا أَنْتُمْ وَلاَ ءَابَاؤُكُمْ
قُلِ اللَّهُ ثُمَّ ذَرْهُمْ فِي خَوْضِهِمْ يَلْعَبُونَ

Meaning: They did not estimate Allah with an estimation due to Him when they said: "Nothing did Allah send down to any human being (by inspiration)." Say (O Muhammad SAW): "Who then sent down the Book which Musa (Moses) brought, a light and a guidance to mankind which you (the Jews) have made into (separate) papersheets, disclosing (some of it) and concealing (much). And you were taught (through the Qur'an) that which neither you nor your fathers knew." Say: "Allah (sent it down)." Then leave them to play in their vain discussions. (Surah Al-An`am – Verse No. 91)

]اتَّخَذُوا أَحْبَارَهُمْ وَرُهْبَانَهُمْ أَرْبَابًا مِنْ دُونِ اللَّهِ وَالْمَسِيحَ ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ وَمَا أُمِرُوا إِلاَّ لِيَعْبُدُوا إِلَهًا وَاحِدًا
لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ سُبْحَانَهُ عَمَّا يُشْرِكُونَ

Meaning: They (Jews and Christians) took their rabbis and their monks to be their lords besides Allah (by obeying them in things which they made lawful or unlawful according to their own desires without being ordered by Allah), and (they also took as their Lord) Messiah, son of Maryam (Mary), while they (Jews and Christians) were commanded to worship none but One Ilah (God - Allah), none has the right to be worshipped but He. Praise and glory be to Him, (far above is He) from having the partners they associate (with Him). (Surah At-Tawbah – Verse No. 31)

      Modern historical studies have trace the development of the present texts of both the Old and New Testaments, which greatly differ from the authentic texts of the Hebrew Torah and the Aramaic Gospels, whose whereabouts no one knows. The recording of the current texts of the Torah took place more than one thousand years after the death of Musa (Moses). Besides the remains of the Ten Commandments, the Torah also includes the national, historical, and legislative heritage of the Children of Israel through several centures. It has therefore become difficult now to call the Torah a Divine Book.

      As for the Gospels, they consist of the four gospels according to Mathew, Mark, Luke, and John, which are believed to have been written during the second century after `Isa (Jesus) (peace be upon him). As mentioned in the Encyclopaedia Britannica, many historians greatly doubt the attribution of the four Gospels to the above-mentioned Disciples. They are narratives of the life of 'Isa (Jesus) (peace be upon him), full of obvious differences, undoubtedly due to the fact that they were written by people who were in different places and at different times. Other hands have subsequently changed the Gospels over the years. There is no room here to enumerate and specify these differences, whether between the four Gospels or between chapters within the very same Gospel. This is also the case with the sentences and narratives included in them that are not consistent with logic. These differences have been verified by authorized studies of Christian texts.

     However, we will mention an important example here, concerning the birth and crucifixion of 'Isa (Jesus). Both the Gospels according to Mathew and Luke attribute the lineage of 'Iesa to that of Joseph the Carpenter, the fiancé of Maryam (the Virgin Mary), despite the fact that the Messiah (peace be upon him) had no father, just like Adam (peace be upon him) before him. Additionally, the lineages mentioned in Mathew's Gospel and in Luke's Gospel are greatly different.

      The narratives mentioned in the four Gospels concerning the alleged crucifixion and resurrection of 'Iesa also contradict each other. The Disciples did not witness the crucifixion of the Messiah and no decisive narrative has been quoted from them. When analyzing John's Gospel it becomes clear that the person that the Jews brought down quickly from the cross before the Sabbath was still alive. This is verified in the following quotation:

      “But when they came to Jesus, and saw that he was dead already, they brake not his legs. But one of the soldiers with a spear pierced his side, and forthwith came there out blood and water.” (John, 19:33-34)

     This narration is not in accordance with what is mentioned in the other Gospels concerning the scene of the crucifixion.
On the other hand, when 'Iesa (peace be upon him) met his Disciples theteafter, he was not a spirit coming from the Hereafter, but a living human being. According to Luke's Gospel, in order to pacify and reassure the Disciples that he was a human being:

      “But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit. And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts? Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. And when he had thus spoken, he shewed them his hands and his feet. And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat? And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb. And he took it, and did eat before them.” (Luke, 24:37-43)

      As for the story of the resurrection according to the testimony of Mary Magdalene, the narratives of the four Gospels again differ from each other. This can be shown by comparing the following chapters of the Gospels:
     (Mathew, 28), (Mark, 16), (Luke, 24), and (John, 20).

      Allah does speak truly as in the following Qur’anic verses:

]وَبِكُفْرِهِمْ وَقَوْلِهِمْ عَلَى مَرْيَمَ بُهْتَانًا عَظِيمًا * وَقَوْلِهِمْ إِنَّا قَتَلْنَا الْمَسِيحَ عِيسَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ رَسُولَ اللَّهِ وَمَا قَتَلُوهُ وَمَا صَلَبُوهُ وَلَكِنْ شُبِّهَ لَهُمْ وَإِنَّ الَّذِينَ اخْتَلَفُوا فِيهِ لَفِي شَكٍّ مِنْهُ مَا لَهُمْ بِهِ مِنْ عِلْمٍ إِلاَّ اتِّبَاعَ الظَّنِّ وَمَا قَتَلُوهُ يَقِينًا * بَلْ رَفَعَهُ اللَّهُ إِلَيْهِ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ عَزِيزًا حَكِيمً[

Meaning: And because of their (Jews) disbelief and uttering against Maryam (Mary) a grave false charge; And because of their saying (in boast), "We killed Messiah 'Isa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary), the Messenger of Allah," - but they killed him not, nor crucified him, but the resemblance of `Isa (Jesus) was put over another man (and they killed that man), and those who differ therein are full of doubts. They have no (certain) knowledge, they follow nothing but conjecture. For surely; they killed him not (Jesus); But Allah raised him [`Isa (Jesus)] up unto Himself. And Allah is Ever All-­Powerful, All­-Wise. (Surah An-Nisa’ - Verses Nos. 156 - 158)

      The Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him), his tribe, and the pious predecessors did not know the details that were affirmed by the Holy Qur’an concerning 'Isa, otherwise the Prophet would have debated with the People of the Book [the Christians] over them. And it is also known that there was no Arabic version of the Bible (the Torah and the Gospels) until the tenth century C.E.

 11/5 Muhammad in the Prophecies of Musa and 'Isa

     The Holy Qur’an revealed what was hidden in the texts of the Torah and the Gospels concerning the glad tidings of the Seal of the Prophets [the final one], Muhammad (peace be upon him):

]وَإِذْ أَخَذَ اللَّهُ مِيثَاقَ النَّبِيِّينَ لَمَا ءَاتَيْتُكُمْ مِنْ كِتَابٍ وَحِكْمَةٍ ثُمَّ جَاءَكُمْ رَسُولٌ مُصَدِّقٌ لِمَا مَعَكُمْ لَتُؤْمِنُنَّ بِهِ وَلَتَنْصُرُنَّهُ قَالَ ءَأَقْرَرْتُمْ وَأَخَذْتُمْ عَلَى ذَلِكُمْ إِصْرِي قَالُوا أَقْرَرْنَا قَالَ فَاشْهَدُوا وَأَنَا مَعَكُمْ مِنَ الشَّاهِدِينَ[

Meaning: And (remember) when Allah took the Covenant of the Prophets, saying: "Take whatever I gave you from the Book and wisdom, and afterwards there will come to you a Messenger (Muhammad SAW) confirming what is with you; you must, then, believe in him and help him." Allah said: "Do you agree (to it) and will you take up My Covenant (which I conclude with you)?" They said: "We agree." He said: "Then bear witness; and I am with you among the witnesses (for this)." (Surah Al-`Imran – Verse No. 81)

]الَّذِينَ يَتَّبِعُونَ الرَّسُولَ النَّبِيَّ  الأُمِّيَّ الَّذِي يَجِدُونَهُ مَكْتُوبًا عِنْدَهُمْ فِي التَّوْرَاةِ وَالإِنْجِيلِ يَأْمُرُهُمْ بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَيَنْهَاهُمْ عَنِ الْمُنْكَرِ وَيُحِلُّ لَهُمُ الطَّيِّبَاتِ وَيُحَرِّمُ عَلَيْهِمُ الْخَبَائِثَ وَيَضَعُ عَنْهُمْ إِصْرَهُمْ وَالأَغْللاَلَ الَّتِي كَانَتْ عَلَيْهِمْ فَالَّذِينَ ءَامَنُوا بِهِ وَعَزَّرُوهُ وَنَصَرُوهُ وَاتَّبَعُوا النُّورَ الَّذِي أُنْزِلَ مَعَهُ أُولَئِكَ هُمُ الْمُفْلِحُونَ[

Meaning: Those who follow the Messenger, the Prophet who can neither read nor write (i.e. Muhammad SAW) whom they find written with them in the Tawrah (Book revealed to Moses) and the Injeel (Book revealed to Jesus), - he commands them for beneficence; and forbids them from maleficence; making lawful for them the good things, and prohibiting for them the wicked things, and ridding them of their obligation and the shackles that were upon them. So those who believe in him (Muhammad SAW), honour him, help him, and follow the light (the Qur'an) which has been sent down with him, it is they who will be successful. (Surah Al-A`raf – Verse No. 157)

]وَإِنَّهُ لَفِي زُبُرِ الأَوَّلِينَ * أَوَلَمْ يَكُنْ لَهُمْ ءَايَةً أَنْ يَعْلَمَهُ عُلَمَاءُ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ[

Meaning: And verily, it is in the Scriptures the earliest people. Is it not a sign to them that the learned scholars of the Children of Israel knew it (as true)? (Surah Ash-Shu`ara’ – Verses Nos. 196 - 197)

]وَكَذَلِكَ أَنْزَلْنَا إِلَيْكَ الْكِتَابَ فَالَّذِينَ ءَاتَيْنَاهُمُ الْكِتَابَ يُؤْمِنُونَ بِهِ وَمِنْ هَؤُلاَءِ مَنْ يُؤْمِنُ بِهِ
يَجْحَدُ بِآيَاتِنَا إِلاَّ الْكَافِرُونَ * وَمَا كُنْتَ تَتْلُو مِنْ قَبْلِهِ مِنْ كِتَابٍ وَلاَ تَخُطُّهُ بِيَمِينِكَ إِذًا لارْتَابَ الْمُبْطِلُونَ

Meaning: And thus We have sent down to you the Book. So the ones to whom We have brought the Book believe in it; and (some) of these believe in it; and in no way does anyone repudiate Our signs except the disbelievers. And in no way did you recite any Book before (this), nor did you pen it with your right (hand0; then the wrongdoers would indeed suspect it. (Surah Al-`Ankabut – Verses Nos. 47 - 48)

]قُلْ أَرَأَيْتُمْ إِنْ كَانَ مِنْ عِنْدِ اللَّهِ وَكَفَرْتُمْ بِهِ وَشَهِدَ شَاهِدٌ مِنْ بَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ عَلَى مِثْلِهِ فَآمَنَ وَاسْتَكْبَرْتُمْ
إِنَّ اللَّهَ لاَ يَهْدِي الْقَوْمَ الظَّالِمِينَ

Meaning: Say: "Tell me! If this (Qur'an) is from Allah, and you deny it, and a witness from among the Children of Israel testifies that this Qur'an is from Allah, so he believed (embraced Islam) while you are too proud (to believe)." Verily! Allah guides not the people who are Zalimun (polytheists, disbelievers and wrong-doing). (Surah Al-Ahqaf – Verse No. 10)

]وَإِذْ قَالَ عِيسَى ابْنُ مَرْيَمَ يَابَنِي إِسْرَائِيلَ إِنِّي رَسُولُ اللَّهِ إِلَيْكُمْ مُصَدِّقًا لِمَا بَيْنَ يَدَيَّ مِنَ التَّوْرَاةِ وَمُبَشِّرًا بِرَسُولٍ يَأْتِي مِنْ بَعْدِي اسْمُهُ أَحْمَدُ فَلَمَّا جَاءَهُمْ بِالْبَيِّنَاتِ قَالُوا هَذَا سِحْرٌ مُبِينٌ[

Meaning: And (remember) when 'Isa (Jesus), son of Maryam (Mary), said: "O Children of Israel! I am the Messenger of Allah unto you confirming the Tawrah (Torah, which came) before me, and giving glad tidings of a Messenger to come after me, whose name shall be Ahmad (i.e. Muhammad SAW). But when he  came to them with clear proofs, they said: "This is plain magic. (Surah As-Saf – Verse No. 6)  

     If the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) had known anything about the texts of the Bible concerning the Seal of the Prophets, he would have declared it to the people, as clarified above. Historically, it has been established that there was no Arabic version of either the Old or the New Testaments at the time of the revelation of the Holy Qur’an or in the following centuries, otherwise the copious legacy of the Arabic heritage would have referred to it. 

Firstly- Evidence in The Old Testament (Torah):

 A- The Prophet wherefrom?:

Profecies in the Old Testament concerning the promised prophet are clear. They mention that the message of monotheism would emanate from a nation other than the Israelites, and that the final prophet would be one of their cousins:.

  -The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken  (Deuteronomy, 18:15)

 - I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him.  (Deuteronomy,18:18)

      The phrase “from among their brethren ” verifies that the final prophet would be one of Ishmael’s sons and not of Isaac’s, otherwise the quotation would read 'from amongst yourselves or your offspring.' In addition to this, the promised prophet was to be a light coming from the Arab Peninsula:

 - And this is the blessing, wherewith Moses the man of God blessed the children of Israel before his death. And he said, The Lord came from Sinai, and rose up from Seir unto them; he shined forth from mount Paran, and he came with ten thousands of saints: from his right hand went a fiery law for them.  (Deuteronomy, 33:1-2) 

      Paran, according to the text of Torah, is an old name for the Mecca area where the prophet Ibrahim (Abraham), together with his wife Hagar and son Ishmael, immigrated to:

 - And God was with the lad; and he grew, and dwelt in the wilderness, and became an archer. And he dwelt in the wilderness of Paran: and his mother took him a wife out of the land of Egypt. (Genesis 21:20-21)

      This is also mentioned in the prophecy of Isaiah:

 - The burden upon Arabia. In the forest in Arabia shall ye lodge, O ye travelling companies of Dedanim. The inhabitants of the land of Tema brought water to him that was thirsty, they prevented with their bread him that fled. For they fled from the swords, from the drawn sword, and from the bent bow, and from the grievousness of war. (Isaiah 21:13-15)

      The lands of Kedar  is also referred to in the following prophecy:

 - Sing unto the Lord a new song, and his praise from the end of the earth, ye that go down to the sea, and all that is therein; the isles, and the inhabitants thereof. Let the wilderness and the cities thereof lift up their voice, the villages that Kedar doth inhabit: let the inhabitants of the rock sing, let them shout from the top of the mountains. Let them give glory unto the Lord, and declare his praise in the islands. (Isaiah, 42:10-12)

     Kedar is the son of Ishmael, as in:

 - And these are the names of the sons of Ishmael, by their names, according to their generations: the firstborn of Ishmael, Nebajoth; and Kedar, and Adbeel, and Mibsam. (Genesis 25:13)

      The mountains referred in the citations above are those of `Arafat, Mina, and Muzdalifah.

              The phrases “Let them give glory unto the Lord, and declare his praise in the islands” is a reference to “Talbiyah” i.e. Praise and Glory to Allah, prounounced by Muslims during their pilgrimage to Mecca.

 B- Illiterate Prophet:

     - And the book is delivered to him that is not learned, saying, Read this, I pray thee: and he saith, I am not learned. (Isaiah, 29:12)

      This means that the promised prophet will not speak of his own accord, rather he will repeat what will be revealed to him. This is in accordance with the following Qur’anic verses:

]وَكَذَلِكَ أَوْحَيْنَا إِلَيْكَ رُوحًا مِنْ أَمْرِنَا مَا كُنْتَ تَدْرِي مَا الْكِتَابُ وَلاَ الإِيمَانُ وَلَكِنْ جَعَلْنَاهُ نُورًا
نَهْدِي بِهِ مَنْ نَشَاءُ مِنْ عِبَادِنَا وَإِنَّكَ لَتَهْدِي إِلَى صِرَاطٍ مُسْتَقِيمٍ

Meaning: And thus We have sent to you (O Muhammad SAW) a Spirit of Our Command. You knew not what is the Book, nor what is Faith? But We have made it a light wherewith We guide whosoever of Our slaves We will. And verily, you are indeed guiding (mankind) to the Straight Path. (Surah Ash-Shura – Verse No. 52)

]وَمَا يَنْطِقُ عَنِ الْهَوَى * إِنْ هُوَ إِلاَّ وَحْيٌ يُوحَى * عَلَّمَهُ شَدِيدُ الْقُوَى * ذُو مِرَّةٍ فَاسْتَوَى
وَهُوَ بِالأُفُقِ الأَعْلَى * ثُمَّ دَنَا فَتَدَلَّى * فَكَانَ قَابَ قَوْسَيْنِ أَوْ أَدْنَى * فَأَوْحَى إِلَى عَبْدِهِ مَا أَوْحَى

Meaning: Nor does he speak of (his own) desire. It is only a revelation revealed. One of the valiant powers has taught him. Owner of resolute splendor; so he leveled himself. (When) he was on the most exlted horizon. Thereafter he (came) within reach, then hung suspended. So he was at two bows (distance) or (even) closer (still). Then He revealed to His bondman what He revealed. (Surah An-Najm – Verses Nos. 3 - 10)

]لاَ تُحَرِّكْ بِهِ لِسَانَكَ لِتَعْجَلَ بِهِ * إِنَّ عَلَيْنَا جَمْعَهُ وَقُرْءَانَهُ * فَإِذَا قَرَأْنَاهُ فَاتَّبِعْ قُرْءَانَهُ * ثُمَّ إِنَّ عَلَيْنَا بَيَانَهُ[

Meaning: Move not your tongue concerning (the Qur'an, O Muhammad SAW) to make haste therewith. It is for Us to collect it and to give you the ability to recite it (the Qur'an), And when We have recited it to you, then follow you its recital. Then it is for Us to make it clear to you. (Surah Al-Qiyamah – Verses Nos.16 - 19)

]كَذَلِكَ أَرْسَلْنَاكَ فِي أُمَّةٍ قَدْ خَلَتْ مِنْ قَبْلِهَا أُمَمٌ لِتَتْلُوَ عَلَيْهِمُ الَّذِي أَوْحَيْنَا إِلَيْكَ وَهُمْ يَكْفُرُونَ بِالرَّحْمَنِ قُلْ هُوَ رَبِّي لاَ إِلَهَ إلاَّ هُوَ عَلَيْهِ تَوَكَّلْتُ وَإِلَيْهِ مَتَابِ[

Meaning: Thus have We sent you (O Muhammad SAW) to a community before whom other communities have passed away, in order that you might recite unto them what We have inspired to you, while they disbelieve in the Most Beneficient (Allah). Say: "He is my Lord, none has the right to be worshipped but He! In Him is my trust, and to Him will be my return with repentance. (Surah Ar-Ra`d – Verse No. 30)

]وَمَا كُنْتَ تَتْلُو مِنْ قَبْلِهِ مِنْ كِتَابٍ وَلاَ تَخُطُّهُ بِيَمِينِكَ إِذًا لاَرْتَابَ الْمُبْطِلُونَ[

Meaning: Neither did you (O Muhammad SAW) read any book before it (this Qur'an), nor did you write any book (whatsoever) with your right hand. In that case, indeed, the followers of falsehood might have doubted. (Surah Al-`Ankabut – Verse No. 48)

]قُلْ مَا كُنْتُ بِدْعًا مِنَ الرُّسُلِ وَمَا أَدْرِي مَا يُفْعَلُ بِي وَلاَ بِكُمْ إِنْ أَتَّبِعُ إِلاَّ مَا يُوحَى إِلَيَّ وَمَا أَنَا إِلاَّ نَذِيرٌ مُبِينٌ[

Meaning: Say (O Muhammad SAW):"I am not a new thing among the Messengers (of Allah) nor do I know what will be done with me or with you. I only follow that which is revealed to me, and I am but a plain warner. (Surah Al-Ahqaf – Verse No. 9)

 C- A prophet like Moses (as mentioned in Deuteronomy in the Old Testament):

 - I will raise them up a Prophet from among their brethren, like unto thee, and will put my words in his mouth; and he shall speak unto them all that I shall command him. (Deuteronomy, 18:18)

       This means that he will have a new message for all humanity. This did not apply to 'Isa (peace be upon him) whose message was confined only to the children of Israel, in order to correct the teachings of Musa:

]قُلْ يَاأَيُّهَا النَّاسُ إِنِّي رَسُولُ اللَّهِ إِلَيْكُمْ جَمِيعًا الَّذِي لَهُ مُلْكُ السَّمَوَاتِ وَالأَرْضَِ لاَ إِلَهَ إِلاَّ هُوَ يُحْيِي وَيُمِيتُ
فَآمِنُوا بِاللَّهِ وَرَسُولِهِ النَّبِيِّ الأُمِّيِّ الَّذِي يُؤْمِنُ بِاللَّهِ وَكَلِمَاتِهِ وَاتَّبِعُوهُ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَهْتَدُونَ

Meaning: Say (O Muhammad SAW): "O mankind! Verily, I am sent to you all as the Messenger of Allah - to Whom belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth. (Surah Al-A`raf – Verse No. 158)

]وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَاكَ إِلاَّ كَافَّةً لِلنَّاسِ بَشِيرًا وَنَذِيرًا وَلَكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لاَ يَعْلَمُونَ[

Meaning: And We have not sent you (O Muhammad SAW) except as a giver of glad tidings and a warner to all mankind, but most of men know not. (Surah Saba’ – Verse No. 28)

      The Gospels mention, by the tongue of Jesus, that:

- Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. (Mathew, 5:17)

 - But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. (Mathew, 15:24)

- These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: But go rather to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. (Mathew, 10:5-6).

      Just like Muhammad (peace be upon him), Musa also married, guided the children of Israel, and brought practical rulings and legislation. This did not apply to 'Isa.

 D- He will speak in the name of Allah, as mentioned in Deuteronomy:

 - And it shall come to pass, that whosoever will not hearken unto my words which he shall speak in my name, I will require it of him.  (Deuteronomy, 18:19)

       Likewise, all the Surahs of the Holy Qur’an also begin with mention of the name of Allah, and Muslims repeat, "In the Name of Allah, the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful," in every prayer and when beginning any activity.

 Secondly- Evidence in The Gospels of the New Testament:

       In regard to the Gospels, they describe the promised prophet, Muhammad, as al-Mu`azzi, the word used in the Arabic version, which is equivalent to the English word 'Comforter.' Both of the words are translations of the Greek word Paracletos mentioned in the Greek version of the Gospels:

- Nevertheless I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you. (John, 16:7)

 - I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. (John, 16:12-13)

      Research has proven that the origin of the word Paracletos is derived from the Hebrew word Birklit meaning Advocate or Proponent. And research into linguistic history has clarified that the spelling of this word, in old Hebrew, is identical to that of: Barklit meaning the Praised One in Hebrew. (It should be noted that vowels were not introduced to Hebrew until the fifth century C.E.)

      Moreover, the texts of the Gospels (e.g. the text of John 16:12-13 mentioned above) affirmed that the Seal of the Prophets would not pronounce anything on his own accord, rather he would convey what would be revealed to him. Also, he would come after the ascension of 'Isa (as mentioned above in the Gospel according to John), and that his message would emanate from a nation other than that of the Israelites:

 - Jesus saith unto them, Did ye never read in the scriptures, The stone which the builders rejected, the same is become the head of the corner: this is the Lord's doing, and it is marvellous in our eyes?

Therefore say I unto you, The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof. (Mathew, 21:42-43)

 11/6 The People of the Cave

     Some modern archeological discoveries have led to finding a cave in the territory of 'Ar-Raqim' referred to in the following Qur’anic verse:

]أَمْ حَسِبْتَ أَنَّ أَصْحَابَ الْكَهْفِ وَالرَّقِيمِ كَانُوا مِنْ ءَايَاتِنَا عَجَبًا[

Meaning: Do you think that the people of the Cave and Ar-Raqim (the Inscription, on which were written the names of the people of the Cave) were a wonder among Our Signs? (Surah Al-Kahf– Verse No. 9)

      The territory of Ar-Raqim is seven km. from Amman, Jordan [now known as the village of Rajib]. Expressions of monotheism were found inscribed on the walls of the cave, written in ancient languages.

      The shape of the openings of the cave fits the description mentioned in the following verse, that is to say, that it would protect the center of the cave from the sun's rays, whether from the east or the west:

]وَتَرَى الشَّمْسَ إِذَا طَلَعَتْ تَزَاوَرُ عَنْ كَهْفِهِمْ ذَاتَ الْيَمِينِ وَإِذَا غَرَبَتْ تَقْرِضُهُمْ ذَاتَ الشِّمَالِ وَهُمْ فِي فَجْوَةٍ مِنْهُ ذَلِكَ مِنْ ءَايَاتِ اللَّهِ مَنْ يَهْدِ اللَّهُ فَهُوَ الْمُهْتَدِ وَمَنْ يُضْلِلْ فَلَنْ تَجِدَ لَهُ وَلِيًّا مُرْشِدًا[

Meaning: And you might have seen the sun, when it rose, declining to the right from their Cave, and when it set, turning away from them to the left, while they lay in the midst of the Cave. That is (one) of the signs of Allah. He whom Allah guides, is rightly guided; but he whom He sends astray, for him you will find no right-minded patron. (Surah Al-Kahf – Verse No. 17)

      Another scientific sign in the story of the People of the Cave is the covering up of their sense of hearing, i.e. preventing this sense from being active so that their long sleep would continue. Hearing is the only sense that works during sleep:

]فَضَرَبْنَا عَلَى ءَاذَانِهِمْ فِي الْكَهْفِ سِنِينَ عَدَدًا[

Meaning: Therefore We covered up their (sense of) hearing (causing them, to go in deep sleep) in the Cave for a number of years. (Surah Al-Kahf – Verse No. 11)

      The People of the Cave were also turned to their left and their right sides during their long sleep. This is another sign of the truth of the Holy Qur’an. Dermatologists have verified that long sleep results in bedsores, vein occlusion, and depression of the nerves in the feet. The perfection of the Holy Qur’an lies in the reference to Allah’s mercy, represented by the turning of the people during their long sleep:

]وَتَحْسَبُهُمْ أَيْقَاظًا وَهُمْ رُقُودٌ وَنُقَلِّبُهُمْ ذَاتَ الْيَمِينِ وَذَاتَ الشِّمَالِ وَكَلْبُهُمْ بَاسِطٌ ذِرَاعَيْهِ بِالْوَصِيدِ
لَوِ اطَّلَعْتَ عَلَيْهِمْ لَوَلَّيْتَ مِنْهُمْ فِرَارًا وَلَمُلِئْتَ مِنْهُمْ رُعْبًا

Meaning: And you would have thought them awake, while they were asleep. And We turned them on their right and on their left sides, and their dog stretching forth his two forelegs at the entrance (of the Cave). Had you looked at them, you would certainly have turned back from them in flight, and would certainly have been filled with awe of them. (Surah Al-Kahf – Verse No. 18)