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Offline Zafreen

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Was Yahya given scripture?
« on: June 17, 2014, 07:20:35 PM »
I did a search but couldn't find the answer. In Yusuf Ali's translation Yahya was a Prophet 3:39 and Jesus was a Messenger. But Jesus was given scripture. Was Yahya? They were around at the same time, wern't they?

Thank you

Offline Saba

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2014, 05:51:05 PM »
Salaam Zafreen. You might find the following article helpful... Basically it argues with Qur'anic proof that the terms prophet and messenger are misunderstood today by many Muslims today. I think anyone who is given a Book, or supports a central messenger with a Book like Prophet Aaron (AS) who supported prophet Moses (AS) are known as prophets. But they are also given authority as the article says.... Saba  8) ;D

http://quransmessage.com/articles/end%20of%20prophethood%20FM3.htm

Offline Zafreen

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #2 on: August 15, 2014, 07:05:24 PM »
Thank u but it may be my lack of intelligence, I did not get a reply from the article. The Article says Proohets were given wisdom and/or Books. Allah says Messengers woyld come to verify the Prophets messages. Then why is Yahya called a prophet only? He was given wisdom and Jesus was given a injeel. Doesnt that make them both prophets? Am i making sense?

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #3 on: August 15, 2014, 11:07:22 PM »
Dear Zafreen,

As-salam alaykum

You share:

In Yusuf Ali's translation Yahya was a Prophet 3:39 and Jesus was a Messenger

The Quran clearly states unequivocally in another part of the Quran that Jesus was also a prophet (19:30).

Please see my response which I trust clarifies, God willing.

  • Any agent tasked / entrusted with delivering a religious / theological message / bearing of good tidings to a people are termed as messengers.  This is the default position. Messengers verify / confirm existing messages as clearly stated in verse 3:81. Thus, all prophets are by default 'messengers' as in verse (19:51), in contrast to the traditional position. It is useful to remember that in its basic definition from the Quran, a 'messenger’ (rasul) is someone that is entrusted with a message / a message bearer (12:50).
  • Those that are given a central message / Book with a given law or words of wisdom that are inspired in them and 'hukm' (judgement) such as the many Hebrew prophets are known as 'Prophets' (nabi) (2:213; 6:89). Jesus, Muhammad and Moses were similarly 'prophets' (and messengers by default).
  • Those that support existing 'prophets' as henchmen or aiders (wazir - 25:35-36), or are tasked by God to deliver the message / law in tandem with a central prophet are also termed as 'prophets'. Examples of such prophets are Prophet Aaron who supported Prophet Moses, Prophet John (Yahya) whose ministry straddles the time period of Prophet Zachariah and Prophet Jesus's ministry and Prophet Lot whose ministry straddles the time period of Prophet Abraham.  Prophet Abraham received the scrolls / scriptures (87:18), Prophet Jesus the 'Injeel' (wisdom) [1] and it is quite possible, that such wisdom and words were also inspired in Prophets John and Zachariah in their capacity as Prophets in addition to any other supportive roles that they may have had. They have certainly been cited as 'prophets' by the Quran.

A list of 'prophets' has been cited by the Quran in verses 6:83-89.

Please note that other patriarchs such as Hud, Saleh and Shoaib are not mentioned in this list of 'prophets' (6:83-89), albeit they are mentioned in other parts of the Quran. These patriarchs were 'messengers' entrusted with parting tidings / warning their people, and did not bring a scripture / Book of law to judge from.  Their messengership is explicitly mentioned and confirmed by their statements “Inni la kum rasul ameen…" (I am a faithful messenger to you...) – Hud (26:125-126); Saleh (26:143-144);and Shuaib (pbut) (26:178-179).

No characteristics as mentioned in points (2) and (3) above have ever been attributed to these messengers in the Quran.

I hope this helps, God willing.

Regards,
Joseph



REFERENCES:

[1] WHAT IS THE INJEEL?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/injeel%20FM3.htm
[2] END OF PROPHETHOOD - CONTINUATION OF MESSENGERS?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/end%20of%20prophethood%20FM3.htm
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline Zafreen

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #4 on: August 19, 2014, 06:06:57 PM »
Much better, thank u. Because the word 'prophet' has been used two describe two roles can be confusing. Surely others must have realised this. Then why was I taught messengers were by default prophets? All these scholars and students of classical arabic n Quran must know this too?!

Offline Zack

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #5 on: August 20, 2014, 07:35:27 AM »
Hello Br Joseph and Zafreen,

It has been some time since I have contributed. I appreciate your input, although I am not totally sure I agree on all the points....

- Firstly, as an additional point, I assume that Messenger usually would be equated to apostle (from apostos), which has an understanding of a "sent delegate".
- Re the general understanding of the ceasing of the Messenger and Prophet (or for Br. Joseph just the Prophet), I believe that these terms were not as "elevated" and exclusive as they are now. In particular the term messenger / rasul / apostle was a non-religious term used in everyday language. (I am assuming that is correct for rasul). Prophet Muhammad repeats "I am only a messenger" Tradition has made this term into something beyond its original meaning.

As for prophet, although I am not an Arabic scholar but interpreting prophet / nabi more generically, it would seem to me 33.40 could not be a dogmatic universal end to the office of the prophet. My sense would be that "the seal of the prophets" was referring to a confirmation to Arabia of the previous revelation. If indeed it was the last of the prophets, the terms of reference was that Arabia would never see another Prophet like Muhammad. I do not believe that Muhammads understanding was that he was universally the last prophet. In contrast to this, for non-Arabia (ie. the West), possibly God intends to raise up a prophet from among them to call their own people back to the same God as Muhammad.

At a minumum, I feel both Islam and Christianity need regular "prophetic voices" to call them back to the straight path. (prophetic being a function, not a position)

Wasalam
Zack

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #6 on: August 20, 2014, 02:54:04 PM »
Dear Zack,

As-salam alaykum

Please see my responses below to your comments in blue italics.

Hello Br Joseph and Zafreen,

It has been some time since I have contributed. I appreciate your input, although I am not totally sure I agree on all the points....


Thank you for your post. Your comments as with other members are always valued on this forum.

- Firstly, as an additional point, I assume that Messenger usually would be equated to apostle (from apostos), which has an understanding of a "sent delegate".

The terms under discussion are the Arabic ‘rasul’ and ‘nabi’ and how best to interpret these terms as they were understood to the primary Arabic speaking audience who were exposed to the prophetic ministry. Thus arguably, these terms need to be put to scrutiny from a Quranic perspective in the main, which as a scripture, is the earliest surviving Islamic document known to Islam. I have discussed these terms in detail citing linguistic references and contextual interpretations as to what these terms mean both in this thread and supporting articles. The intent is not to draw a direct analogy with other terms in different languages.

- Re the general understanding of the ceasing of the Messenger and Prophet (or for Br. Joseph just the Prophet), I believe that these terms were not as "elevated" and exclusive as they are now.

With respect, I would have to strongly disagree. The Quran goes out of its way to separate the terms which it references separately recognising the different nuances and different religious connotations that these terms carry.

"Never did We send a 'rasul' or a 'nabi' before you but..." (22:52)

In particular the term messenger / rasul / apostle was a non-religious term used in everyday language.

With respect, I find no support for this sentiment from the Quran and as noted above, they appear as religious terms, well distinguished.

(I am assuming that is correct for rasul). Prophet Muhammad repeats "I am only a messenger" Tradition has made this term into something beyond its original meaning.

I am aware of the Quran’s repeated emphasis that Muhammad was only (innama) a warner (mundhir – e.g. 13:7) or a mortal (bashir – e.g. 18:110) signifying the capacity in which he was sent. He was not a new thing among the Messengers (46:9) but was like those that were sent before him. He was not a supernatural being such as an angel, hence the emphasis on ‘bashar’.  There is no repeated emphasis that Muhammad was only a messenger.

Thus the emphasis is on the essence of the messenger’ s capacity and purpose. This has little to do with the religiosity of the terms ‘rasul’ and ‘nabi’ which remains understood and well established from a Quran's perspective.

As for prophet, although I am not an Arabic scholar but interpreting prophet / nabi more generically, it would seem to me 33.40 could not be a dogmatic universal end to the office of the prophet. My sense would be that "the seal of the prophets" was referring to a confirmation to Arabia of the previous revelation. If indeed it was the last of the prophets, the terms of reference was that Arabia would never see another Prophet like Muhammad. I do not believe that Muhammads understanding was that he was universally the last prophet. In contrast to this, for non-Arabia (ie. the West), possibly God intends to raise up a prophet from among them to call their own people back to the same God as Muhammad.

I respectfully do not see any evidence for this sentiment either from the Quran’s context in which it has shared narratives or from a linguistic perspective. I have discussed this both from a linguistic and contextual perspective in the articles already shared in this thread which I have referenced again below. I of course, respect your prerogative to an opinion.

At a minumum, I feel both Islam and Christianity need regular "prophetic voices" to call them back to the straight path. (prophetic being a function, not a position)

I do feel this is an important premise behind your perspective underpinned by the need to find common ground which I appreciate. From a Quranic perspective rest assured, these ‘voices’ have not ceased and one does not need a ‘nabi’ to part with these voices or to be tools of guidance. From my humble perspective, the Quran is absolutely clear that ‘risalat’ (messengership) will continue (7:35) and this has been argued more comprehensively in the article already shared.

"O ye Children of Adam! whenever there come to you messengers from among you, rehearsing My verses (Arabic: ayati) to you, those who are righteous and mend (their lives), on them shall be no fear nor shall they grieve" (7:35)

I sense that the term ‘rasul’ from a Quran’s perspective satisfies much of the function that you attribute from a Christian perspective at least, to the English term ‘prophet-hood’. From a ‘functional’ perspective, both Christianity and the Quran’s perspective are in tandem in that guidance shall continue. It is ‘traditional’ Islam which in contrast, argues that both messengership and prophethood have ceased limiting the scope of continuing guidance.
 
Wasalam
Zack


Regards,
Joseph


REFERENCES:

[1] END OF PROPHETHOOD - CONTINUATION OF MESSENGERS?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/end%20of%20prophethood%20FM3.htm
[2] IS VERSE 3:81 A REFERENCE TO ANY PARTICULAR MESSENGER?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/3-81%20FM3.htm
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline good logic

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #7 on: August 20, 2014, 03:39:12 PM »
Greetings Zack, Joseph.

If God chooses His words carefully and deliberately, then we need to have a look at:

1-[6;34]وَلَقَد كُذِّبَت رُسُلٌ مِن قَبلِكَ فَصَبَروا عَلىٰ ما كُذِّبوا وَأوذوا حَتّىٰ أَتىٰهُم نَصرُنا وَلا مُبَدِّلَ لِكَلِمٰتِ اللَّهِ وَلَقَد جاءَكَ مِن نَبَإِى۟ المُرسَلينَ

Does this verse include all messengers and prophets sent before the one being addressed?

2-[14;4}وَما أَرسَلنا مِن رَسولٍ إِلّا بِلِسانِ قَومِهِ لِيُبَيِّنَ لَهُم فَيُضِلُّ اللَّهُ مَن يَشاءُ وَيَهدى مَن يَشاءُ وَهُوَ العَزيزُ الحَكيمُ

Emphasis on language/race/...?

Now we look at:

3-[33:40]ما كانَ مُحَمَّدٌ أَبا أَحَدٍ مِن رِجالِكُم وَلٰكِن رَسولَ اللَّهِ وَخاتَمَ النَّبِيّـۧنَ وَكانَ اللَّهُ بِكُلِّ شَىءٍ عَليمًا

Why mention both "messenger and nabi in the same verse?

4-[3:81] وَإِذ أَخَذَ اللَّهُ ميثٰقَ النَّبِيّـۧنَ لَما ءاتَيتُكُم مِن كِتٰبٍ وَحِكمَةٍ ثُمَّ جاءَكُم رَسولٌ مُصَدِّقٌ لِما مَعَكُم لَتُؤمِنُنَّ بِهِ وَلَتَنصُرُنَّهُ قالَ ءَأَقرَرتُم وَأَخَذتُم عَلىٰ ذٰلِكُم إِصرى قالوا أَقرَرنا قالَ فَاشهَدوا وَأَنا۠ مَعَكُم مِنَ الشّٰهِدينَ
 


Also here . God  says messenger  not nabi?

From my understanding  , and there are other verses that further show this, that:

A- Nabi is also rasool   ( Oulaika lladhina aatainahoum Alkitaba wa alhukma wa alnubuatta...)
b- Rasool can be either a nabi or just a rasool and not a nabi.

The difference  "Nabi" is sent with a scripture (oral/written)...  Rasool is sent to clarify/confirm/correct  existing scripture/message.

Will there be other "nabi" ? No, according to my understanding of Qoran. (Sent and preserved for all generations?)

Will there be other messenger/s? Yes according to my understanding of Qoran.( O children of Adam, messengers will come to you...).

GOD bless you both.
Peace.

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #8 on: August 20, 2014, 03:54:54 PM »
Dear Good Logic,

As-salam alaykum

Thank you for your post. I have read your post with interest and I note that your perspective is not so different from mine on this matter and you have confirmed points (if not all) that I have already shared on this thread and in the accompanying articles.

Have I read this correctly or have I missed something that you intended to elucidate / clarify or disagree with?

Please kindly do elaborate.

Regards,
Joseph
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline good logic

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #9 on: August 20, 2014, 08:31:13 PM »
Greetings  brother Joseph.

I wanted to confirm some points and yes they do agree with yours.

I also wanted to  make the point that future messengers will use Qoran as a reference since no other "Nabi" or scripture  will come to us?


This will allow recipients of messenger/s after the prophet to check their authenticity .i.e Can they provide evidence from Qoran?

Thanks brother.
Peace.

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #10 on: August 21, 2014, 12:31:10 AM »
Dear Good Logic,

As-salam alaykum

Yes, I agree with this. I have elucidated further on this, in section 16 of the following article which you may also find of interest.

END OF PROPHETHOOD - CONTINUATION OF MESSENGERS?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/end%20of%20prophethood%20FM3.htm

Regards,
Joseph
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline good logic

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Re: Was Yahya given scripture?
« Reply #11 on: August 21, 2014, 05:50:03 AM »
Greetings brother Joseph.

I agree with your comments on :

END OF PROPHETHOOD - CONTINUATION OF MESSENGERS?
http://quransmessage.com/articles/end%20of%20prophethood%20FM3.htm

I would like to add that messengers are also sent with " Bayinat" to provide for the recipients so they can be checked for authenticity.
"...Jaathum rusuluhum bi Albayinat...."

Thank you and GOD bless.
Peace.