Reading the Koran. 11

This is another excerpt from Bill Warner’s book Abridged Koran where the verses of Koran are arranged in their chronological order and provided with facts from prophet Muhammad’s life, giving context for them.

CHAPTER 3 THE FAIR (continued)

Mohammed delivered a message from Allah about Al Walid, the leader of the unbelievers. Indeed, many of the rich and powerful, who resisted Mohammed, earned their place in the Koran. The Koran gives such precise details and direct quotes of their arguments that if you were a Meccan of that day, you would know exactly who the person was.

96:6 No, man is certainly stubborn. He sees himself as wealthy. Certainly, all things return to your Lord.

96:9 What do you think of a man [Abu Jahl] who holds back a servant of Allah [Mohammed] when he prays? Do you think that he is on the right path, or practices piety? Do you think that he treats the truth as a lie and turns his back? Does he not know that Allah sees everything?

96:15 No! Certainly if he does not stop, We will grab him by the forelock [cutting off or holding by the forelock was a shame in Arabic culture], the lying, sinful forelock! Let him call his comrades [the other Meccans]. We will call the guards of Hell. No, do not obey him, rather, adore and get closer to Allah.

74:11 Let Me deal with My creations, whom I have given great riches and sons to sit by their side, and whose lives I have made smooth and comfortable. And still he [Al Walid] wants me to give him more. No, I say. He is an enemy of Our revelations. I will impose a dreadful punishment on him because he plotted and planned.

74:19 Damn him! How he planned. Again, Damn him! How he planned.

74:21 Then he looked around and frowned and scowled and turned his back with vain pride and said, “This is nothing but old magic; it is the work of a mere mortal.”

74:26 We will certainly throw him into Hell.

74:27 What will make you realize what Hell is? It leaves nothing, and it spares nothing. It chars the skin.

74:30 Nineteen angels oversee it. The angels are the only guardians of Hell, and We have set their number to confuse the unbelievers and to give the believers certain knowledge of the truth of the Koran so the believers will increase their faith. So the believers and the others who have received the Scriptures have no doubts. The weak of heart and the unbelievers will ask, “What does Allah mean by this parable?”

74:34 This is how Allah confuses whom He will and how He guides whom He chooses: no one knows the armies of your Lord except Allah himself. This is nothing but a warning to men.

74:35 No, by the moon and by the night as it retreats and by the dawn as it breaks, Hell is one of the most dreadful woes filled with warning to men, to any who choose to go forward [believers] or to any who choose to stay behind [unbelievers].

74:41 Every soul is pledged for its own deeds except those that stand on Allah’s right hand. In their gardens they will ask the wicked: “What has brought you to Hell?”

74:44 They will say, “We did not pray, we did not feed the hungry, we argued with the small-minded, and we denied the Judgment Day until our dying day.”

74:49 No mediation or intercession will help them. What is wrong with them that they reject Our warning like a frightened donkey fleeing a lion? Each of them wants to have everything spelled out, but that cannot be. They do not fear the hereafter.

74:54 No! The Koran is warning enough. Anyone who chooses shall be warned. Only if Allah pleases will the people be warned. He is to be feared and often forgiving.

111:1 Let the hands of Abu Lahab [Mohammed’s uncle and an opponent] die and let him die! His wealth and attainments will not help him. He will be burned in Hell, and his wife will carry the firewood, with a palm fiber rope around her neck.

The plan of hurting Mohammed by warning the visitors made everyone more curious. When they heard Mohammed’s soaring words from the Koran many visitors were impressed. When they left they took all the stories from Mecca, the Quraysh, the new Muslims and then, of course, Mohammed. Soon all of that part of Arabia was talking.

In what would be very fortuitous for Mohammed, the Arabs of Medina were attracted to Mohammed’s message. Since half of their town were Jews, the Arabs of Medina were used to the talk of only one god.

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Reading the Koran. 10

This is another excerpt from Bill Warner’s book Abridged Koran where the verses of Koran are arranged in their chronological order and provided with facts from prophet Muhammad’s life, giving context for them.

CHAPTER 3 THE FAIR (continued)

Mecca was a town with two sources of money from the outside. The first was trading, and Mohammed had made his money in the caravan trade. The other was the fees from the pilgrims to the shrine of the Kabah. Fairs combined a little of both. All the tribes came for a fair. People would see old acquaintances and buy, sell or trade goods. Since Mecca was one of several sacred or pilgrim sites, rituals for the different tribal gods were performed around the Kabah and Mecca.

It was time for the fair and the Quraysh were in turmoil. They were desperate that the divisions and rancor that had come with Mohammed’s preaching not spread to the other clans outside Mecca. So a group of concerned Quraysh talked and decided to meet with Al Walid, a man of respect and influence. He told them that all the visitors would come to them and ask about this man Mohammed and what he was preaching. It was a foregone conclusion that Mohammed would preach and people would ask.

But what could they agree on to tell the visitors so that there could be one voice. What would they call him? Was he possessed? Crazy? A ecstatic poet? A sorcerer? Who was he? What was he? Finally they agreed upon Mohammed being a sorcerer since he separated a son from his father or brother or wife or from his family.

68:1 NUN1. By the pen and by what the angels write, by the grace of your Lord, you [Mohammed] are not possessed! Certainly, a limitless reward awaits you, because you have a noble nature, but you will see and they will see, which of you is insane.

53:1 By the star when it sets, your companion [Mohammed] is not wrong, nor is he misled, and he does not speak out of his own desire.

53:4 This [the Koran] is a revelation only to him. The Lord of mighty power filled it with wisdom and taught it to him. Allah appeared in a stately form in the highest part of the horizon. He approached and came nearer, at a distance of about two bow-lengths, or even closer, and he gave his revelation to his servant.

53:11 His heart did not invent what he saw. What! Will you dispute with him what he saw? He had seen Gabriel before, near the Sidrah-tree [a shade tree], which marks the boundary near the Garden of repose. When the Sidrah-tree was mysteriously covered, his eye did not turn away, nor did it wander because he saw his Lord’s greatest sign.

So the Meccans split up and went out on the roadsides of town to speak with the travelers before they even arrived at Mecca.

A Muslim Cleric Confirms Islam And Democracy Are Not Compatible

This is response of a Muslim Cleric, Mazin AbdulAdhim, to Mehdi Hasan’s video that was broadcast on Al Jazeera TV:

“This video does not discuss whether Islam is compatible with democracy, rather he is discussing whether Muslims can handle living under a democracy. These are two very separate issues.

“If we are going to discuss whether *Islam* is compatible with democracy, we need to define the two systems properly first.

“More specifically, we must define:

“1) Who is the “sovereign” (meaning, who has the right to legislate laws) in both systems, 2) who has “authority” (meaning, who has the right to choose the ruler) in both systems.

“The issue is very simple:

“1- Sovereignty: In a democracy, man is the sovereign legislator, so laws are legislated based exclusively on the will of the people. In Islam, on the other hand, Allah (swt) is the Sovereign Legislator, so laws are legislated based exclusively on the texts of the Qur’an and Sunnah; the people have no right or capability to make Halal into Haram, or Haram into Halal, no matter how many people vote in favor of it.

“2- Authority: In a democracy, man has the right to elect his ruler. In Islam, man has the right to elect his ruler.

“So, people tend to confuse these two things. Yes, people can elect their ruler in both Islam and democracy, but no, people cannot legislate their own laws in Islam, whereas they can in a democracy.

“Therefore, Islam and democracy are contradictory and absolutely incompatible, because Islam forbids mankind from legislating laws in the place of the Creator, even if the overwhelming majority of the people vote in favor of it…

Reading the Koran. 9

This is another excerpt from Bill Warner’s book Abridged Koran where the verses of Koran are arranged in their chronological order and provided with facts from prophet Muhammad’s life, giving context for them.

CHAPTER 3 (continued)

The Meccans said that there was no Day of Doom. The Koran:

83:1 Woe to the cheaters who always demand full measure from others, but skimp when they measure out or weigh to others. What! Do they believe that they will not be resurrected on the great day when all men will stand before the Lord of the worlds? Yes! The register [a record of actions] of the wicked is in Sidjin [a place in Hell where the sinners’ records are kept]. And who will make you understand what Sidjin is? It is a complete record.

83:10 Woe on that day to those who deny Our signs, who regard the Judgment Day as a lie! No one regards it as a lie except the transgressor or the criminal, who, when Our signs are recited to him, says, “Old wives tales!” No! Their habits have become like rust on their hearts. Yes, they will be veiled from their Lord’s light that day. Then they will be burned in Hell. They will be told, “This is what you called a lie.”

83:18 No! But the register of the righteous is in Illiyoun [a place in Paradise where the actions of the righteous are recorded]. And who will make you understand what Illiyoun is? It is a complete record, attested to by the angels nearest Allah.

83:22 Surely, the righteous will live among delights! Seated on bridal couches they will gaze around. You will see the delight in their faces. Fine wines, sealed with musk, will be given them to drink. For those who have aspirations, aspire for wine mixed with the waters of Tasnim, a fountain where those close to Allah drink.

83:29 Sinners used to jeer at the believers and wink at one another when one passed by, and they jested as they returned to their own people. When they see believers, they say, “Those people have gone astray.” And yet they were not sent to be the guardians of those people.

83:34 On that day the faithful will mock the unbelievers, while they sit on bridal couches and watch them. Should not the unbelievers be paid back for what they did?

Not only were the present day Meccans going to Hell if they did not follow Mohammed, history was full of those who were doomed to Hell for ignoring the message of Allah.

69:1 The Inevitable! Who will make you understand what the Inevitable is?

69:3 The people of Thamud and Ad [Ad lay on an old trade route north of Mecca. It was abandoned in Mohammed’s day] regarded the Judgment Day as a lie. The people of Thamud were destroyed by crashing thunderbolts. The people of Ad were destroyed by a roaring blast of wind. The wind did Allah’s bidding against them for a full week. During that time you could have seen the people laid low, as if they had been the trunks of hollow palms. Could you have seen any of them surviving?

69:9 Pharaoh, too, and those who thrived before him, and the overthrown cities, all committed sin, and disobeyed the messenger sent by their Lord. That is why He punished them with an accumulated punishment.

69:11 When the flood rose high, We carried you in the ark so We could use that event to warn you and so the hearing ear might hear it. But when one blast is sounded on the trumpet, and the earth and the mountains are shaken, and both are simultaneously crushed into powder, on that day the woe that must come suddenly will come, and the sky will be split in two, because it will be fragile that day. The angels will align on the edges of the sky and over them. Eight will carry up the throne of your Lord.

69:18 On that day you will be brought before Him and none of your secrets will remain secret. Those who receive their book in their right hand will say to their friends, “Take my book and read it. I always knew that I would come to my reckoning.” And he will have a life of bliss, in a lofty Garden, with clusters of fruit nearby. Eat and drink with satisfaction. This is the reward for the good acts that you performed in the past.

69:25 But those who receive their book with their left hand will say, “Oh, I wish that I were never given my book and that I had never heard of my reckoning! I wish that death had been the end of me! My wealth has done me no good! My power has fled from me!”

69:30 Take him, and chain him, and cast him into Hell. Then fasten him to a seventy-yard chain, because he did not believe in Allah, the Greatest, and did not help to feed the poor. He will have no friends here that day, no food, only the pus that runs from sores, which only the sinners eat.

69:38 I do not need to swear by what you see and by that which you do not see – that this is surely the word of an honored messenger! It is not the word of a poet—you have so little faith! It is also not the word of a soothsayer – you heed little of Our warning! It is a message from the Lord of the worlds.

69:44 If he [Mohammed] had invented any of Our revelations, We would have grabbed him by the right hand, and cut his throat, and We would not have protected him from any of you.

69:48 But, surely, the Koran is a warning for the Allah-fearing. We know many think it is a lie. But it will cause grief for the unbelievers, because it is the absolute truth.

69:52 Praise the name of your Lord, the Greatest.

The Muslims went to the edge of Mecca to pray in order to be alone. One day a group of the Quraysh came upon them and began to mock them and a fight started. Saad, a Muslim, picked up the jaw bone of a camel and struck one of the Quraysh with it and bloodied him. This violence was the first blood to be shed in Islam.

When Mohammed spoke about his new religion, it did not cause any problems among the Meccans. Then Mohammed began to condemn their religion and rituals and worship. This was a new phenomena. New religions could be added and had been, but not to the detriment to others.

The Meccans took offense and resolved to treat him as an enemy. Luckily, he had the protection of his influential uncle, Abu Talib.

Some of the Quraysh went to Abu Talib, Mohammed’s tribal protector, and said to him, “Your nephew has cursed our gods, insulted our religion, mocked our way of life, criticized our civilization, attacked our virtues, and said that our forefathers were ignorant and in error. You must stop him, or you must let us stop him. We will rid you of him.” Abu Talib gave them a soft reply and sent them away.

The Quraysh saw that Abu Talib would not help. Mohammed continued to preach Islam and attack them and their lives. Mecca was a small town, everybody knew everybody. Islam had split the town of Mecca and divided the ruling and priestly tribe. The Quraysh were attacked at the very ground of their social being.

Things got much worse. Now there was open hostility in the town. Quarrels increased, arguments got very heated. Complete disharmony dominated the town. The tribe started to abuse the recently converted Muslims. But Mohammed’s uncle Abu Talib was a respected elder and was able to protect them from real harm.

Reading the Koran. 8

This is another excerpt from Bill Warner’s book Abridged Koran where the verses of Koran are arranged in their chronological order and provided with facts from prophet Muhammad’s life, giving context for them.

CHAPTER 3 (continued)

Mohammed’s task in Mecca was difficult.

52:29 Therefore, continue to warn men. By the grace of your Lord, you are neither insane, nor a soothsayer.

52:30 Will people say, “He is a poet! Let us wait until his fortunes turn.”? Say: “Wait,” because truthfully, I will wait with you.

52:32 Is it their dreams that cause them to do this? Or is it because they are a perverse people? Will they say, “He has written it [the Koran] himself?” No! It is because they did not believe. If that is true, let them write a book like it.

52:35 Were they created from nothing? Did they create themselves? Did they create the heavens and the earth? No! It is because they have no faith. Do they possess your Lord’s treasures? Do they have absolute power? Can they communicate with the angels? If so, let them bring proof.

52:39 Does Allah have daughters while you have sons? Do you ask them for a payment so that they are weighed down with debt? Do they have secret knowledge that they can write down? Do they try to set traps for you? The unbelievers are the ones that are ensnared. Do they have any gods besides Allah? Glory be to Allah above the false gods they join with Him. If they saw a piece of the sky falling, they would say, “It is only a dense cloud.”

52:45 Ignore them until they meet the day when they will swoon with terror — a day when their tricks will avail them nothing and no help will come their way. Truly, there is another punishment for the evildoers, but most of them do not know it.

52:48 Wait patiently for your Lord’s Judgment, because you are in Our eye. Sing Allah’s praises when you rise up, and give Him praise at night and when the stars are setting.

The Koran contains encouragement for Mohammed:

94:1 Did We not open your heart for you [Mohammed] and relieve you of the burden that hurt your back? And did We not improve your reputation? So, certainly, with every hardship there is relief. Certainly, with every hardship there is relief.

94:7 When you are through with prayers, you should continue to work. Do everything you can to please your Lord.

Mohammed spent a great deal of time arguing with the Meccans and telling them that they were doomed to Hell if they rejected him and his message.

84:1 When the sky is split in half and obeys its Lord, as it must; when the earth is flattened, and has cast out everything it contains and is empty [the graves deliver the dead], and obeys its Lord, as it must; then certainly those who want to meet their Lord will meet Him.

84:7 He who receives his book [of life’s deeds] in his right hand [saved in Paradise], his account will be taken by a quick and easy reckoning and he will return joyously to his people. But those who receive their book behind their backs [damned to Hell] will invite destruction. They will burn in the Fire. They lived joyously among their people because they did not believe that they would return to Allah, but their Lord is always watching them.

84:16 So I do not need to swear by the glow of sunset, and by the night and everything it conceals, and by the moon at its fullest. You will certainly travel from stage to stage.

84:20 What is wrong with those who do not believe? When the Koran is read to them, why do they refuse to bow down? The unbelievers call it a lie.

84:23 But Allah knows their secrets, so announce to them a painful punishment. Those who believe and do good deeds, they will have a reward that never ends.

Reading the Koran. 7

This is another excerpt from Bill Warner’s book Abridged Koran where the verses of Koran are arranged in their chronological order and provided with facts from prophet Muhammad’s life, giving context for them.

CHAPTER 3 (continued)

Since the word was out, Mohammed began to openly preach his new doctrine. He had been private for three years before he went public.

The first of many parables was given:

68:17 Surely, We have tried them [the Meccans] as We tried the owners of the garden, when they swore they would harvest its fruit in the morning; but added no exception [by saying, “If it is the will of Allah”].

Then an encompassing plague from your Lord swept through it while they slept, and by the morning the garden was barren, as if all its fruit had been cut.

68:21 At dawn they called to each other, “Go to your fields early if you want to cut your dates.” So they went, quietly whispering to each other, “No poor man will enter your garden today.” And so they went out at dawn to their fields with this purpose in mind.

68:26 But when they saw the garden, they said, “Surely we have gone astray. Indeed, our harvest is destroyed.” The best among them said, “Did I not say to you, ‘Why do you refuse to praise Allah?’” They said, “Glory to our Lord! Surely we have done wrong.”

68:30 Then they began to blame one another, and they said, “Woe to us! We were insolent! Perhaps our Lord will give us a better garden in exchange. Surely we beg this from our Lord.”

68:33 This has been their punishment, but the punishment of the hereafter is even greater, but they did not know this. Surely the Allah-fearing will be in Gardens of Delight in the presence of their Lord. Should We deal with those who have submitted to Allah like We do those who offend him? What has happened to you [unbelievers] to make you judge as you do? Do you have a Scripture from which you can learn how you can have the things that you choose? Or have you received an oath from Us, binding until Judgment Day, that you will have everything you demand? Ask them [the unbelievers] who will guarantee this? Or do they have other gods? Let them bring their other gods if they are telling the truth.

The Arabs had always believed in jinns, invisible beings created from fire.

Now they appeared in the Koran.

114:1 Say: I seek protection with the Lord of men, the king of men, the judge of men, and from the mischief of gossips, who whisper into the hearts of men tales against the jinn and men.

51:56 I created jinn and man only to worship me. I need no livelihood from them, and I do not need them to feed me. Truly, Allah is the sole sustainer, the possessor of power, and the unmovable!

51:59 Let those who injure you share the fate of the sinners of old. They should not challenge Me to hasten it. Woe to the unbelievers, because of the day they are threatened with.

The other deities in Mecca were attacked.

53:19 Do you see Al-Lat and Al-Ozza, and Manat [Arabic deities] the third idol? What? Do you have male children and Allah female children [Arabs called angels the daughters of Allah]? That is an unfair division!

53:23 These are mere names. You and your fathers gave them these names. Allah has not acknowledged them. They follow only their own conceits and desires, even though their Lord has already given them guidance.

53:27 Surely, the ones who give female names to the angels are the ones who do not believe in the hereafter, but of this they have no knowledge.

They are following a guess, and a guess cannot replace the truth.

53:29 Stay away from those who turn their backs on Our warnings and desire only the present life. This is all that they know. Truly, your Lord knows everything about those who stray from his path, and He knows everything about those who have accepted his guidance. Whatever is in the heavens and on the earth belongs to Allah. He may reward evildoers according to their own deeds and those who do good will be rewarded with good things.

53:32 Surely, your Lord is filled with forgiveness for those who avoid great sins and shameful acts and only commit minor sins. He knew you well when He brought you out of the earth and when you were in your mother’s womb. Do not try to justify yourself. He knows the Allah-fearing people the best.

Reading the Koran. 6

This is another excerpt from Bill Warner’s book Abridged Koran where the verses of Koran are arranged in their chronological order and provided with facts from prophet Muhammad’s life, giving context for them.

CHAPTER 3 (continued)

Mohammed preached the doctrine of the Day of Judgment.

88:1 Have you heard the news of the overwhelming event?

88:2 Some faces will be downcast that day, troubled and weary, burnt at the scorching Fire, forced to drink from a fiercely boiling fountain, with only bitter thorns for food, which neither nourishes nor satisfies hunger.

88:8 Other faces that day will be joyous, and in a lofty Garden, very pleased with their past efforts. No vain talk will be heard there. There will be gushing fountains. There will be raised couches, and goblets placed nearby, and cushions arranged, and carpets spread out.

88:17 Will they consider the camels and how they were made? Or consider how the sky was upraised, and how the mountains are rooted, and how the earth is spread?

88:21 Warn them, because you [Mohammed] are merely a warner. You have no authority over them, but whoever turns back and disbelieves, Allah will punish them terribly.

88:25 Truly they will return to Us. Then it will be time for Us to settle their accounts.

After the day of doom would come Paradise and Hell.

56:1 When the inevitable day of terror arrives, no one will treat its sudden arrival as a lie. That day many will be crushed! That day some will be exalted!

56:4 When the earth is shaken to its core, and the mountains crumble to powder and become scattered dust, and the people are divided into three groups, the people of the right hand—Oh, how happy the people of the right hand will be!

56:9 The people of the left hand—Oh, how wretched they will be!

56:10 The people who were foremost on earth [the first to follow [Mohammed], they will be foremost in the hereafter. A large number of those who lived before are the people who will be brought close to Allah, in Gardens of delight. A few of those who lived later [after Islam was well established] will be on decorated couches, reclining on them face to face. They will be waited on by immortal young boys with goblets and ewers and a cup of pure wine that gives no headache nor muddles the mind, and with fruits that are most pleasing, and with the flesh of birds that they desire. In compensation for their past good deeds, they will have houris [heavenly companions of pleasure] with big, dark eyes like pearls peeking from their shells. They will not hear any vain or sinful talk, only the cry, “Peace! Peace!”

56:27 The people of the right-hand—Oh! How happy the people of the right-hand will be resting on raised couches amid thornless sidrahs [plum trees] and talh trees [banana trees], thick with fruit, and in extended shade and constantly flowing waters, and abundant fruits, neither forbidden nor out of reach. And We have specially made for them houris, companions, chaste and pure virgins, lovers and friends of equal age with them for the people of the right hand, a large number of the people of old, and a large number of the people of the latter generations.

56:41 The people of the left-hand—Oh, how wretched the people of the left-hand will be amid scorching winds and scalding water, and in the shade of black smoke, neither cool nor refreshing. Formerly they were blessed with worldly pleasures, yet they persisted in terrible sin and used to say, “What will be resurrected after we have died and crumbled to bone and dust? What about our fathers, the men of old?”

56:49 Say: Yes, the former and the latter. They will all be gathered at the appointed hour.

56:51 Then those who denied [Mohammed was a prophet] and erred will certainly eat from the Ez-zakkoum tree [a tree of Hell], and they will gorge themselves with it. Then they will drink scalding water and will drink like a thirsty camel. This will be their feast on the Judgment Day!

There was added a new element to the religion. Any person who rejected the revelations of Mohammed would be eternally punished. The culture of religious tolerance in Mecca now had a new religion which preached the end of tolerance. Only Islam was acceptable.