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15. THE AMAZING QUR’ᾹN (1) History keeps repeating itself. Fourteen centuries ago, Khālid ibn al-Walīd under his leadership ensured the victory of the Makkkan army over the Muslim army led by the Prophet in the Battle of Uḥud in 3/625. Four years later, in 7/629 Khālid ibn al-Walīd came to Madinah and went to the Prophet and converted to Islam. Since then, he became the defender of Islam and the Prophet’s general in his campaigns due to his mastership in warfare. He was called as his epithet, “Sayf al-Islām”, “the Sword of Islam.” In our modern time we have Dr. Garry Miller who had accepted the challenge of the Qur’ān in 1977. One year later he became Muslim, the defender of the Qur’ān and a propagator of Islam worldwide. He conducted many debates, discussions, speeches, and one of his main topics is the wondrous nature of the Qur’ān as evidence of its divine origin. A person among the audience at the end of his speech about the amazing Qur’ān asked him why he used the term “amazing” for the Qur’ān instead of the “Noble” Qur’ān )‫ (القرآن الكريم‬as the title of his topic. He answered that this title “amazing” was originally from non-Muslim scholars who were amazed with the Qur’ān, although they did not believe in it as divine revelation. He said that in the Qur’ān itself this expression is found. What he meant is the following Qur’ānic verse: )1:‫قُل أُوحِي إِلي أن ُه استمع نفر مِن ال ِجن فقال ُوا إِنا سمِعنا قُرآ ًنا عجبًا (الجن‬ Say (O Muhammad): “It has been revealed to me that a group jinn listened (to this Qur’an). They said: ‘Verily, we have heard a wonderful Recitation (this Qur’an)!…’” (Q. 72:1) This wonderful recitation is itself the amazing Qur’ān. Dr. Miller also said that besides “Noble” the term the “Glorious” )‫ (مجيد‬is also attributed to the Qur’ān, as mentioned by the Qur’an itself, as follows: )11-11:‫ فِي لوح مح ُفوظ (البروج‬.‫بل هُو قُرآن م ِجيد‬


Nay! This is a Glorious Qur’an. (Inscribed) in The Preserved Tablet (Q. 85:21-22) Dr. Miller also mentioned the term “Holy” )‫ ُمقدس‬, sacred) which is originally from “wholely” is attributed to the Bible, not to the Qur’ān. This term is attributed to the Valley Ṭuwá where Allah spoke to Prophet Moses (Musa a.s.), as follows: ُ ‫س‬ )11:‫ط ًوى (طه‬ ِ ‫إِني أنا ربُّك فاخلع نعليك إِنك ِبالوا ِد المُقد‬ “Verily, I am your Lord! So take off your shoes; you are in the sacred valley, Tuwa.” (Q. 20:11-12) ُ ‫س‬ ُ ‫هل أتاك حد‬ )11-11 :‫ط ًوى ( النازعات‬ ِ ‫ إِذ ناداهُ ر ُّب ُه ِبالوا ِد المُقد‬.‫ِيث مُوسى‬ Has there come to you the story of Musa (Moses)? When His Lord called him in the sacred valley of Tuwa (Q. 79:15-16) Before introducing the introduction of his book The Amazing Qur’an, Dr. Miller said: “Calling the amazing Qur’an is not something done by Muslims, who have an appreciation for the book who are pleased with it; it has been labelled amazing by non-Muslims as well. In fact, even people who hate Islam very much have still called it amazing.” In his introduction Dr. Miller states that non-Muslims who examine the Qur’ān being from the desert of Arabia 14 century ago expect to find it talking about the desert. To their surprise it talked also about the sea. It describes what is like a storm in the sea. Dr. Miller talked about a merchant marine who knew nothing about Islam. One day he borrowed the translation of the Qur’ān from a Muslim, and then returned it after reading it. He was impressed with the accurate description of a storm on a sea, so asked: “This Muhammad, was he a sailor?” When he got the answer: “As a matter of fact, Muhammad lived in the desert,” he embraced Islam on the spot, because he had been in a storm on the sea, and the Qur’an’s description of it must have been from God. This verse runs as follows: ُ ‫أو ك‬ ‫ظلُمات فِي بحر لُجي يغشاهُ موج مِن فو ِق ِه موج مِن فو ِق ِه‬ ُ ‫سحاب‬ ‫ظلُمات بعضُها فوق بعض إِذا أخرج يدهُ لم يكد يراها‬


)04:‫ومن لم يجع ِل ّللا ُ ل ُه ُنورً ا فما ل ُه مِن ُنور (النور‬ Or [the state of disbeliever] is like the darkness in a vast deep sea, overwhelmed with waves topped by waves, topped by dark clouds, (layers of) darkness upon darkness: if a man stretches out his hand, he can hardly see it! And he for whom Allah has not appointed light, for him there is no light. (Q. 24:40) Scientific discovery found the existence of a wave below the surface of the ocean, so that we have two kinds of wave here, one above the other. This is the scientific interpretation of the above verse. This is how the Qur’ān portrays the state of disbeliever; without guidance, they are in the dark, darkness upon darkness. This is the opposite condition of the believer mentioned in the previous verse, namely, verse 35 mentioning the condition of the true believer, who receives guidance, i.e., “light upon light” )‫( ُنور على ُنور‬. These verses are in sūrat al-Nūr (Light). Dr. Miller mentions the theory of atomism advanced by the Greek philosopher, Democritus, assuming that matters consist of tiny particles called atoms which are indestructible and indivisible. Last century modern science discovered that this atom can be split into component parts. The Qur’an has mentioned it earlier, as follows: ‫ت ول فِي‬ ِ ‫ل يع ُزبُ عن ُه مِثقا ُل ذرة فِي السماوا‬ )3:‫ (سبأ‬...‫ض ول أصغ ُر مِن ذلِك‬ ِ ‫اْلر‬ … He [Allah] is aware of an atom’s weight in the heavens and on the earth, and even smaller than that … (Q. 34:3) Another amazing thing noticed by Dr. Miller is the absence of the Prophet’s advice about health and hygiene in the Qur’ān. For example, it is not included in the Qur’ān ‫ الحبة السوداء‬, black caraway (L. nigella sativa), known in the Muslim world as habbatussauda, one of the Prophetic Medicine ) ّ‫ (الطبُّ النب ِّوي‬which is still being used and sold as food supplement to strengthen immune system and as medicine to treat various ailments. ‫( الحِجامة‬ḥijāmah, cupping) is still being practiced, especially in Indonesia, called bekam,


is not mentioned in the Qur’ān. Allah did not want to include the Prophet’s advice and medical treatment which could be outdated. He includes only one medical treatment which nobody would argue against it, namely, honey which will never be outdated. Allah says: ُ ‫يخ ُر ُج مِن ب‬ ‫اس‬ ِ ‫ُطونِها شراب مُختلِف ألوا ُن ُه فِي ِه شِ فاء لِلن‬ )16:‫إِن فِي ذلِك َلي ًة لِقوم يتفكرُون ( النحل‬ There comes from their [bees’] bellies, a drink of varying colour wherein is healthy for men. Verily, this is indeed a sign for a people who think (Q. 16:69) Honey is said to have been used to preserve the mummies because it absorbs the liquid needed by bacteria to survive, and therefore it kills them. In Shakespeare’s time, it was believed that bees flying around were males. He mentioned about it in his play Henry the Fourth that bees were soldiers who answered the call of their king. The Qur’ān says that they are females instead of males, as in the following verse: ‫ال ُبيُو ًتا‬ ِ ‫وأوحى ربُّك إِلى النح ِل أ ِن ات ِخذِي مِن ال ِجب‬ ُ ‫ومِن الشج ِر ومِما يع ِر‬ (16:‫شون (النحل‬ And your Lord inspired the bees, saying, “Take you inhabitants in the mountains and in the trees and in what they erect. (Q. 16:68) Dr. Keith More, professor of embryology in the University of Toronto was invited to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to find out if what the Qur’ān says about the subject. Dr. Miller interviewed him later for a television presentation. He said that some of the things stated in the Qur’ān, such as the growth of fetus were not known until thirty years ago. The description of human being at one stage as “leech like clot” mentioned in the Qur’ān (Q. 22:5; 23:14, and 40:67) was new to him and after he found out that it was true he added it in his book with the picture of both the fetus and the leech. When he was asked: “How do you explain this information in the Qur’ān?” He replied: “It


could only have been divinely revealed!” Yet, he did not embrace Islam. The Qur’ān was and is still a problem for non-believers. Many recent discoveries were found giving more evidence on the authenticity of the Qur’an. Allah says in the Qur’ān, ‫ت واْلرض كانتا رت ًقا ففتقناهُما‬ ِ ‫أولم ير الذِين كفرُوا أن السماوا‬ )34:‫وجعلنا مِن الما ِء ُكل شيء حي أفل يُؤ ِم ُنون (اْلنبياء‬ Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth were joined together as one united piece, then We parted them? And We have made from water every living thing. Will they not then believe? (Q. 21:30) The theory of Big Bang that the origin of the universe was one piece has been stated in the Qur’ān in the above verse. The Qur’ān’s claim that every living thing is made of water, was proved to be true after the invention of the microscope. They found out that cytoplasm which is the basic substance of the cells is made 80% of water. Science has discovered spots on the sun which move every 25 days indicating that it rotates around its axis. The Qur’ān has mentioned that the sun swims in the space, not just flying uncontrollably in the space, as follows: ‫وهُو الذِي خلق الليل والنهار والشمس والقمر ُكل فِي‬ )33:‫فلك يسبحُون (اْلنبياء‬ And He it is who has created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon, each in an orbit floating [i.e., swimming]. (Q. 21:33) ‫ار‬ ِ ‫ل الشمسُ ينبغِي لها أن ُتد ِرك القمر ول اللي ُل س ِاب ُق النه‬ )04:‫و ُكل فِي فلك يسبحُون (يس‬ It is not for the sun to overtake the moon, nor does the night outstrip the day. They all float, [i.e., swimming] each in an orbit (Q. 36: 40)


The word ‫ سبح‬has two meanings: to float and to swim. Since the sun rotates as if it is swimming, the second meaning, namely, swimming, should be used for these particular verses. Dr. Miller mentions about mythomania, a mental disease where a person lies and believes in them. Psychologists treat the mythomaniac with continually confronting him with facts. For example, if he says that he is the king of England, they do not tell him that he is lying, but they ask him: “Where is then the queen, where is the Prime Minister?” Eventually, he is healed of his delusions, because he cannot deal with facts. When the Prophet s.a.w. was said to have suffered from mythomania by non-Muslims, but the problem is that what he said in the Qur’ān is entirely based upon facts. On the contrary, the Qur’ān states that it contains healing, including mythomania, as follows: ‫يا أيُّها الناسُ قد جاءت ُكم موعِ ظة مِن رب ُكم وشِ فاء لِما فِي‬ )15:‫ور و ُه ًدى ورحمة لِلمُؤ ِمنِين (يونس‬ ُّ ‫ال‬ ِ ‫ص ُد‬ O mankind, there has come to you an admonition from your Lord [i.e., the Qur’an] and a healing for what is in the heart- and guidance and mercy for the believers.(Q. 10:57) By reading the Qur’ān a person can be healed from his delusions because it confronts him with facts. If you say that the Qur’ān is not revelation, then study it, and find the proof that it is not, give viable explanation. If you can’t, you are supposed to admit the truth of what it claims that it is revelation. But guidance is only from Allah. He said it five times in the Qur’ān, )11:‫ القصص‬.01:‫ النور‬.151 ،113 ،101 :‫(البقرة‬...‫ يهدِي من يشا ُء‬... … He (Allah) guides whom He wills… (Q. 2:142,213,272; 24:46; 28:56) Dr. Miller said that Catholic Church is honest in its statement in the New Catholic Encyclopedia about the origin of the Qur’ān. It states:


Over the centuries, many theories have been offered as to the origin of the Qur’an ….Today no sensible man accepts any of these theories!! The Prophet s.a.w. himself could not guide his uncle Abū Ṭālib. When Abū Ṭālib did not want to say the shahādah, that “there is no god but Allah, and Muhammad is His Messenger” before his death, the Prophet said, “By Allah, I will ask forgiveness for you as long as I am not prohibited to.” Then revelation came, as follows: ‫ما كان لِلن ِبي والذِين آم ُنوا أن يستغ ِفرُوا لِلمُش ِركِين ولو‬ )113:‫ (التوبة‬...‫كا ُنوا أُولِي قُربى‬ It is not (proper) for the Prophet and those who believe to ask Allah’s forgiveness for the idolaters, even though they be of kin… (Q. 9:113) ‫إِنك ل تهدِي من أحببت ولكِن ّللا يهدِي من يشا ُء وهُو‬ )11:‫أعل ُم ِبالمُهتدِين (القصص‬ Verily, you (O Muhammad) guide not whom you like, but Allah guides whom He wills. And He knows best those who are guided (Q. 28:56) In fact, when we pray, do our devotion to Allah and cite the Fātiḥah, the introductory chapter of the Qur’ān, we ask and keep asking Allah at least seventeen times a day one thing only, guidance, when we say ‫“ اهدِنا الصراط المُستقِيم‬Guide us to the Straight Way.” As a matter of fact, we can say that the whole content of the Qur’an in one word is guidance. Allah said, )1:‫ذلِك الكِتابُ ل ريب فِي ِه ُه ًدى لِلمُتقِين (البقرة‬ This is the Book (the Qur’ān), whereof there is no doubt, a guidance to those who are pious (Q. 2:2) May Allah keep guiding us to the Right Path. (CIVIC, 21.03.2014) :‫المصادر‬ ‫المكتبة الشاملة‬ ‫تفسير الطبري‬ Gary Miller. The Amazing Qur’an

15 the amazing qur’an (1)  

A Friday khutbah/sermon delivered at CIVIC, Canberra, on 21 March, 2014

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