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Don Stewart :: If the Quran Is Not the Word of God, Then What Was Its Actual Source?

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If the Quran Is Not the Word of God, Then What Was Its Actual Source?

Islam – Question 6

There is no objective evidence that the Quran is what it claims for itself and that Muslims assume it to be; the word of Allah. If this is the case, then an obvious question arises, “Where did all of these recitations come from? What was the actual source of the teachings and commandments that now make up the Quran?” We can list the possibilities as follows.

1. The Quran Was Completely Created by Muhammad

It can be argued that the recitations of Muhammad that make up the Quran were actually from his own imagination. He could be considered to be a religious genius who created all of these words in his own mind. It is also possible that he actually believed that he was God’s prophet.

This line of argumentation views Muhammad as a sincere person who truly believed that God, or Allah, was actually speaking to him. However, he was sincerely wrong.

2. The Quran Was Demonically Inspired

There are many who assume that the source of the recitations that came from Muhammad was demonic. The explanations concerning how he received his revelations, coupled with the description of how he spoke them out loud, have convinced a number of people that a demonic spirit had actually possessed him. Indeed, when Muhammad first received these “revelations” he himself thought they might be demonically inspired. His first impression, therefore, was correct. Some demonic source was inspiring him.

3. Muhammad Used Stories That Were Already in Circulation

There is some evidence that Muhammad was merely repeating stories that he had already heard in his contacts with Christians and Jews. It is well-known that he had associations with Jews and Christians while he was a successful businessman. Religion was often discussed. Therefore, it is possible that he could have altered the stories he heard from them to produce his recitations.

For example, it has been long-noted that many of the words of the Quran are very similar to what is found in Jewish and Christian apocryphal literature that was circulating at the time. This has caused a number of people to conclude that Muhammad merely borrowed from current stories when he concocted the words attributed to Allah.

Which of these assessments is correct? No one can be absolutely certain. Any of the three are theoretically possible. It could be some combination of these three possibilities. We just do not know and it does not seem likely that we can know.

Does It Really Matter?

In the end, it does not really matter whether Muhammad invented the recitations, whether they were demonically inspired, or whether he used material that was currently in circulation. The fact is that he taught a new religion, or faith, that is opposed to the God-given truth revealed in Holy Scripture.

Whatever the actual source of his revelations, it is not divinely inspired and it puts the religion of Islam in the same category of all other so-called revelations that have a message contrary to Scripture. Therefore, it is to be classed with all the other sacred books that attempt to explain ultimate reality apart from what God has revealed to us.

When Jesus prayed to God the Father on the night of His betrayal, He said the following.

“Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.” (John 17:17 NRSV)

His Word is the truth! It is not the teaching of Islam or the Quran or in any other so-called sacred work. The truth of God is found in the Bible alone.

Summary – Question 6
If the Quran Is Not the Word of God, Then What Was Its Actual Source?

While the Quran claims to be the word of Allah, and Muslims accept this claim, there is no real evidence to support it. To the contrary, the Quran contradicts God’s earlier revelations to humanity; the Old Testament and the New Testament.

This being the case, we can speculate as to where the information that Muhammad recited actually originated. Seemingly there are three basic possibilities.

First, it is possible that Muhammad sincerely believed that Allah was speaking to him but the actual source of the words was his own imagination. In other words, the Quran consists of the thoughts of this one man who invented this new religion apart from any divine word. While Muhammad could have truly thought that he was “the prophet” he was sincerely mistaken.

Others argue that there was a demonic origin to the Quran. This was Muhammad’s original thought when he initially received these visions. Instead of being of divine origin, the words and visions Muhammad received were of satanic origin. There is also the possibility that the words of the Quran were merely a repeating of the many Jewish and Christian apocryphal stories which were circulating at that time. Muhammad may have used these stories as the basis for his recitations which make up the Quran.

So which was it? Was it something that Muhammad simply made up himself? Was he demonically inspired to speak the recitations that are now the Quran? Or did he borrow from stories that were previously circulating? We do not really know the answer. It could be a combination of the three. However, the damage has been done. The Quran presents a different revelation of God than the one found in Scripture and hence it has led untold numbers of people astray from God’s truth. God’s truth is found in Holy Scripture and in it alone. This is the only standard of divine truth that God has revealed to the human race. All others are mere pretenders. This includes the Quran.

What Is the Holy Book of Islam? ← Prior Section
What Are the Essential Religious Practices of Muslims? Next Section →
CONTENT DISCLAIMER:

The Blue Letter Bible ministry and the BLB Institute hold to the historical, conservative Christian faith, which includes a firm belief in the inerrancy of Scripture. Since the text and audio content provided by BLB represent a range of evangelical traditions, all of the ideas and principles conveyed in the resource materials are not necessarily affirmed, in total, by this ministry.


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