Editorial Note in Saut ul Haq, Karachi: The newly launched book “Ijaz ul Quran” by a reputed Islamic scholar Khwaja Azhar Abbas is now in the initial stages of its publication. Since the book will take much time to be published, our readers keep demanding us that this book be published in our magazine Saut ul Haq in a series. Upon their persistent demand, we are publishing the first serial of the book. From now onwards, we will be producing the book in chapters, because we hold the appeal of the readers in high esteem.
By Khwaja Azhar Abbas
(Translated from Urdu by New Age Islam Edit Desk)
The entire world today is suffering from internal turmoil and mental disturbance. The sole reason behind it is that human intellect could not yet produce a system that can ensure peace and rest for human life. All the problems of this era are an outcome of human minds that are incapable of solving them. They exert every possible effort to bring out the best life style for humankind, but to no avail. However, the Quran guarantees a life style that can only bring prosperity and wellbeing for all humanity, an ultimate purpose that was the prime concern of all the successive Prophets (peace be upon them all). The last Prophet who came as the seal of the prophethood was Muhammad (pbuh) who made rigorous efforts to establish this system, the results of which are now before the eyes of the entire world. The constitution of his state was based on the Quran. He did not establish the Islamic state in pursuit of his own pleasure or power, but rather as a part of his mandate (48۔5/26۔38) that was assigned to each and every prophet 213۔2)). Unfortunately, this system ceased after some ages.
The results of implementing the Qur’anic system are sufficient enough to prove the divine revelations. All the claims made by the Quran are fulfilled by this system, and this fulfilment is a substantial proof that the Quran was revealed by God. Unless an individual or a group willingly agrees to this fact (that Quran is a revelation), they cannot try to establish this system. If you are extremely hungry, and someone arranges for you a delicious feast, but also assures you that the food is poisonous, you will never eat that, because you know for sure that it will cause your death. Similarly, unless you ascertain that the Haraam (prohibited) food impairs the human soul, you will not eschew it. Until you know for sure that living in a tyrannical system hampers the nourishment of the human soul and heart, you will not try to establish the Islamic state. And you can ascertain it only when you firmly believe that each and every word of the Quran was revealed by God, and is still intact.
Himalayan mountains can move out of their place, but no single word of the Quran can be moved away from its place. The Quran is the last refuge for humanity that can solve all its problems, and this book is our eternal companion.
The genuine and the most vital evidences of the divinity of the Quran are the outputs of our religion. But we have to produce more substantial proofs.
A number of books have been written on the topic of miracle of the Quran. At the outset of the third century, the book Nazm ul Quran had been written. The author of this book was a highly eminent scholar, Hafiz and Quran exegete, who belonged to Mu'tazilite school of philosophical thought.
Then came the book Ijaz ul Quran by Qazi Abu Bakr Yaqlani. In the last period, the Egyptian scholar Mustafa Sadiq Rafai wrote a nice book namely “Ijaz ul Quran”.
A well-renowned scholar Syed Raza took this work forward and wrote the book al-Wahi al-Muhammadi. But no remarkable work has been done on this theme in Urdu language. Maulana Shabbir Ahmad Usmani had written a brief book with a view to countering a Hindu sect of India, Arya Samaj. This short book was written about a hundred years ago. These are all the books we have on the divinity of the Qur'an. The authors of these books were those Islamic scholars who viewed Quran as a religious book. They had no concept of Deen (code of life), nor did they write their books from the perspective of Deen.
The evidence of the Qur'an‘s divinity will come out only when you declare it the Constitution of the State and follow it. The results of the submission to the Qur’anic commandments shall be compelling evidences of its being divine revelation. Thus, you will witness the proofs of its divinity in such a way that will show the Quran as if it is being revealed before your eyes. Then, the constitutionalists of the world will benefit from it. A salient feature of this constitution is that when you pass judgements in compliance with its rules, “you find within yourselves no discomfort from what you have judged, and submit in [full, willing] submission.” (4:65) In such a state, the hidden potentials of all citizens will be discovered 129۔2/164۔3/2۔62) )
The Holy Qur'an clearly says: “(Oh Muhammad) Say, "O my people, work according to your position, [for] indeed, I am working; and you are going to know To whom will come a torment disgracing him and on whom will descend an enduring punishment."
Here, the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him was made to announce that if people don’t get ready to practice this system, a disgracing and enduring punishment will be inflicted upon them. It implies that the results of our system will come out soon proving our truthfulness. The same challenge has been posed to infidels in two more places 125۔6/9311)). This sort of challenge cannot be given by people of Mazhab (religion) or mundane affairs; it can only be expected from those who follow Deen. This verse draws a clear contrast between Mazhab and Deen.
The Holy Quran says:
“O you who have believed, if you support Allah, He will support you and plant firmly your feet.”
In this verse, Allah asks us to get fully determined to stand by Deen, because if we do it with full determination and utmost courage, Allah will settle the rest of our matters by Himself. He will support us and plant our feet firmly. This is what the Quran has stated. Now if we stand up to establish the Islamic state, Allah will surely help us by fulfilling His promise. Thus, the divinity of the Quran will be proved.
After the days of rightly guided caliphate passed, neither did Muslims stand up to establish religion, nor did the time of divine help come. Muslim kings and their governments kept fighting each other. Their wars were aimed at attaining power and rule, not at establishing Islamic state. However, in 1965, the war between Pakistan and India was fought with an ambition to support religion and establish Islamic state. That was not a war for any king or kingdom. The victory that Pakistan achieved over India in this war was a result of divine help. God’s promise became fulfilled before our eyes, and this brought an opportunity for us to prove that the Holy Quran is a divine revelation.
The Holy Quran says: “Allah has promised those who have believed among you and done righteous deeds that He will surely grant them succession [to authority] upon the earth”. In this verse, Allah says that those of us who opt for faith and good deeds with righteousness and truthfulness, will be granted the authority upon the earth much in the same way as the peoples of the earlier prophets were granted. Allah has made a promise here. So, if we assume power with the help of faith and good deeds, then, of course, the divine revelation of the Quran will be proved.
The point to be noted here is that if God’s promises are fulfilled, the fact that the Holy Quran is a divine revelation will be proved. You just have to ponder over the three above-mentioned verses 135۔6/93۔11/39۔39)) where infidels have been warned that if they don’t follow the Quran’s commandments and continue to defy its rules, they will meet a severe and enduring punishment. We don’t have to go far to find its proof. Our own situation is compelling evidence. When we Muslims sought to establish the Qur’anic system, the entire world witnessed our rise and elevated position. But since the time we began to do away with the Qur’anic system, we have been enduring a severe punishment with no way out. This Qur’anic promise that has been fulfilled in our case leaves no doubt about the fact that Quran is a divine revelation.
The Holy Quran has also given some proofs of its divinity by itself. We would like to reproduce them here for your information. Please, think over a verse in this context. After its explanation, the proofs of the divinity of the Quran shall be produced.
The Holy Quran says: “Rather, they have denied that which they encompass not in knowledge and whose interpretation has not yet come to them. Thus did those before them deny. Then observe how the end of the wrongdoers was.”
This verse explains the reasons for the denial of the Quran. They are three as enumerated in the Quran:
(1) The deniers of the Quran are those who don’t encompass it in their knowledge.
(2) The deniers of the Quran are those to whom its interpretation (the practical result of the Qur’anic system) has not yet come.
(3) The deniers of the Quran are those who don’t study the historical facts, and those who don’t observe the fact that the earlier peoples were destined to rise or fall according to the rules and laws set by the Quran.
This verse states that there may be three reasons for faith in the Quran:
(1) The first reason for belief in the Quran is that the believer has to encompass the Quran in his knowledge.
(2) The second reason for belief in the Quran is the establishment of the Qur’anic system. For the benefits that Quran has promised for humanity will be attained only when the Qur’anic system is established. Then, of course, the Quran will be proved a divine revelation.
(3) The third point is that we should find out the reasons for rise and fall of the earlier peoples. Some of them should be selected and studied in depth to discover whether the causes of their rise or fall were the same as the Quran has mentioned or they were quite different from them. It was hard enough in the ancient times to discover it, but today when we have scores of books on history of civilization, it has become quite an easy task. We don’t even have to purchase these books, as they are now available on internet. A great number of books on history and philosophy are available in Kindle. Karl Marx and many other Communist scholars have written much on these topics. We need to bring them all together and study them deeply to accomplish our work. If the Qur’anic laws and rules are proven right, nothing else will be needed to authenticate the Quran. It is pretty self-explanatory that the Holy Quran has provided an ample amount of materials on this topic. So, for the purpose of this study, we should put all related Qur’anic verses in one place, and then trace the causes of rise and fall of the earlier peoples.
It is clear that one who denies the divinity of the Quran is in advantageous position because he can achieve his motive by proving any single Qur’anic verse erroneous or doubtful. But one who believes in the Holy Quran has to prove all its verses on the scientific grounds.
Among these three methods of proving the divinity of the Quran, the first one should be taken carefully. Those who adopt this method should opt for a subject that they have studied well and covered all its aspects, and then they should deal with the issues that have not yet been redressed or that have been conflated with different and dubious views of scholars. After you have grasped a particular subject, you can easily find its solutions in the related Qur’anic verse, if you turn to the Quran. There is no issue that cannot be resolved in the light of Qur’anic verses, as the Holy Quran claims: "Call upon Me; I will respond to you." (40:60). So, every person should do research in his own area of study and turn to the Holy Quran in issues which human intellect has not yet resolved. If the Holy Quran guides 50 or 60 scholars of different subjects, it will certainly establish the fact that it is a divine revelation, not an outcome of human reasoning. We cannot assume in any case that the Prophet had anticipated all branches of knowledge even before their advent. It is simply impossible for a person to acquire all sciences of the world that are under constant researches and renewal process.
Today, we regularly receive news about the fast growth of Islam. Sources reveal that in America, around five hundred citizens are converting to Islam every day. According to some news reports, a few years ago when Benazir Bhutto was the prime minister in Pakistan, nearly 10 thousands women had converted to Islam in Britain. A widely famous book namely “Why I embraced Islam?” is available in the market. The book speaks about one hundred individuals who have accepted Islam. If you come across such people who have recently embraced Islam, or study the above-mentioned book, you will get to know that they are not ideological Muslims.
It is heartening that people of Tablighi Jama’at are also engaged in converting people to Islam in different countries, though they themselves have no scholarly position. But their converts are generally emotional Muslims who convert to Islam in a bid to get out of their problematic societies. Such newly converted Muslims choose Islam merely as a customary religion after getting fascinated by the Muslim style of worship. None of them converts to Islam due to his/her inclination towards the Qur’anic system. Therefore, the only benefit of their conversion to Islam is that our number increases in Census. Just as we are born Muslims, not the Qur'anic ones, similarly they too are not purely Qur'anic Muslims.
The Holy Quran has produced the proofs of its divinity by itself. The Qur'anic challenge to produce a work similar to it, has not yet been met since the time of its first revelation till today. This verse will always stand unchallenged before the deniers of the Quran:
“And if you are in doubt about what We have sent down upon Our Servant [Muhammad], then produce a Surah the like thereof and call upon your witnesses other than Allah, if you should be truthful. But if you do not - and you will never be able to - then fear the Fire, whose fuel is men and stones, prepared for the disbelievers.” (24۔23۔2)
When the Quran claimed its divinity, the pagans and infidels of Mecca rejected it. Therefore, the Quran produced evidences to prove its divinity. The first and the most compelling evidence was that it challenged its opponents to produce anything of comparable merit if they believed the Qur'an to be the work of a human being. This Qur’anic challenge has been so great and powerful that it has not yet been refuted by the deniers of the Quran.
The inability to meet this challenge became clear in three different ages. First, it became clear in the age of the Prophet himself. The Quran was revealed in the Arabic language, among the Arabs who spoke the same language with full accuracy. Among them were great Arabic poets and eloquent speakers, but they did not accept this challenge. Arabs fought 82 wars with the Prophet (pbuh) and his followers, but they did not muster courage to meet this challenge. Had they co-operated with one another to produce even a verse similar to it, they would not have succeeded in their mission.
For the second time, it became clear in our own country after the revolt of 1857. When the British took over India completely, they wanted to promote Christianity in this region. To meet this end, the British government organised many debates that continued for long. Christians had appointed their priests and fathers as their debaters while we Muslims had Maulana Muhammad Qasim Nanautawi and Maulana Rahmatullah Keranwi to compete with them. They would discuss a variety of subjects and had touched upon almost every related topic, but the Christian priests never agreed to talk about this particular subject, because they were unable to meet the Qur’anic challenge to produce the like of its verses.
For two hundred years, almost all Muslim countries have been a European colony. During all this period, Christians and Jews have been openly expressing their hatred towards Islam and Muslims. Hundreds of Orientalists exist in different parts of the world today. Even in Arab countries, Arab Christian scholars have now a great number. The author of the popular Arabic dictionary “Al-Munjid” was a Christian. Another famous Arabic dictionary ‘Lexi’ was compiled by William Lane who was a Christian. The author of the Arabic dictionary Qamoos al-Asri was Ilyas al-Toon Ilyas. He too was a Christian scholar. But none of these enemies of Islam could muster courage to meet the challenge of the Holy Quran.
The Quran’s challenge to produce the like of it is not limited to any one language. The divine claim that the contents of the Quran are unparalleled refers to every language, not only Arabic. The like of the Quran cannot be produced in any language of the world. Hundreds of Christian priests came to India, but none of them could take on this challenge. And this what the Quran had foretold during its revelation, when it stated: “But if you do not (produce the like of it) - and you will never be able to (do it)”. Thus, the Quran’s prophesy was fulfilled.
For the third time, it became clear in the age of crusade wars. All Christian rulers continued their war against Muslims for almost three hundred years. Among the Christians of those times were imminent scholars of Arabic language. A large number of the Christian populace knew Arabic. Many of them would use it as their first language. Such Christians were found in the entire Middle East. Some of them were world renowned Arabic literary figures whose works were produced as documents. Despite all this, none of them could accept the Qur'anic challenge. It shows how powerful and awesome the miracle of the Quran is.
Quran claims its uniqueness not only in one place but repeatedly at four different places:
(1) The first place when the Quran claimed its uniqueness is the verse 24 of Surah Baqura:
(2) The second place is the verse 88 of Surah Isr’a:
“Say, "If mankind and the jinn gathered in order to produce the like of this Qur'an, they could not produce the like of it, even if they were to each other assistants." (88۔17)
(3) The third place is in Surah Hud:
“Or do they say, "He invented it"? Say, "Then bring ten Surahs like it that have been invented and call upon [for assistance] whomever you can besides Allah, if you should be truthful." (13۔11)
(4) The fourth place is in Surah Yunus, where Allah, the Almighty says:
“Or do they say [about the Prophet], "He invented it?" Say, "Then bring forth a Surah like it and call upon [for assistance] whomever you can besides Allah, if you should be truthful." (38۔10)
In all the above verses, Quran has challenged to produce the like of it, and it has also explained what could be the like of it:
“Say, "Then bring a scripture from Allah which is more guiding than either of them that I may follow it, if you should be truthful." (49۔28) That is, I have to follow the guidance in any case, provided that it is not forged but is real guidance from God. If you possess a Divine Book which gives better guidance than the Qur'an and the Torah, you should produce it: I shall follow it without any hesitation. Here, the challenge is about being more guiding not merely about being comparable to the literary beauty and eloquence as embedded in the Holy Quran. It is worth mentioning that Quran does not negate the Torah, rather it corroborates its divinity. Nevertheless, it rejects the additions or deletions incorporated in the Torah. Here, the Qur'anic claim is that Torah is also book of guidance, but since it has been distorted, the more guiding book now is the Holy Quran only.
It should be clear that the Holy Quran is not the only unique and unparalleled book. All books revealed by God were unmatchable. Torah was also a divine book that spread the light of guidance. Before its distortion, this book was as distinguished as the Quran itself. But since the time it became replete with distortions, its originality and distinction faded away.
All divine books revealed in different times offered the same proof for their divinity; that they were unmatchable. But they were revealed in different languages to different peoples, as the Holy Quran points it out:
“And We did not send any messenger except [speaking] in the language of his people to state clearly for them” (14:4)
This verse makes it clear that the miracle of the Quran is not confined to its Arabic language and literary beauty, because every divine book was revealed in a different language. Therefore, it is evident that the real miracle of the Quran is hidden in its guidance, and not in its language. The real miracle is the unique Qur'anic code of life that no other book could ever introduce.
One more noteworthy point is that the Qur’an, while posing this challenge, uses the words “یا ایھا الناس” (meaning “Oh mankind!”). It implies that its audience is not limited to the Arabs only; rather it challenges the whole world. Allah, the Almighty used the word “We” in His challenge that says: “And if you are in doubt about what We have sent down upon Our Servant [Muhammad], then produce a Surah the like thereof and call upon your witnesses other than Allah, if you should be truthful”. By using it, He wanted to clarify that the Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him had no personal interference in the divine revelations, as they were not his own work. The Prophet (pbuh) was just a mediator who received them. This Qur'anic claim itself is a miracle, as it has not yet been refuted. All the three points elaborated in this paragraph are clear proofs that Qur’an is a divine revelation.
I have purposely raised this issue here, because some people question that if the Quran is an unmatchable book, then what about many other books that cannot be paralleled. These people think that Ferdowsi's sahnamah, Divan-e-Hafiz, Roomi’s Masnavi and Shakespeare’s plays are some of the books that cannot be compared. But it is foolish to compare them with the Quran. No book of the world, let alone these books, can be comparable to the divine guidance and sciences of the Holy Quran, a book that discusses 32 thousands different subjects. Some of the Qur'anic sciences will be discussed in the next chapters of this book. After reading them, you will come to the conclusion that the Western sciences that human minds have invented are like a child’s play in comparison to the Holy Quran. It is a human tragedy that Quran was not revealed directly to the Western peoples. Had it come down upon them in its pure and original shape, the world would have been different today. It should be noted that many non-Muslim Arabic scholars have translated the Quran into different languages, but they did not dare to produce the like of it. Jurji Zaydan was a great Arabic scholar of the last century. Today, there are hundreds of Copts in Egypt who speak Arabic language as their mother tongue. But no one could dare to bring a work comparable to the Quran.
Source: Saut ul Haq, July 2013, Karachi