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Offline Talib

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Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« on: October 16, 2012, 04:13:44 AM »
Dear Readers

Salamun Alaikum

I read the very informative articles on Jesus Crucifixion and his Second coming by Respected Joseph Islam Sir.

To me, after studying the meanings of the Arabic terms Salabuhu, Tawaffa and Rafa in Lane's Lexicon, it makes a lot of sense that when looked closely and collectively at the various places these words are used, Jesus(pbuh) did not die on the cross and since Tawaffa is used, that means he is not coming back.

Rafa, in most translations, is translated as 'To Raise'. And I suppose that that is why it is supposed that Jesus(pbuh) was risen to Allah. That leads to a common sense that since Qullu Nafsin Zaykatil Maut (Every Soul Shall Taste Death), Jesus(pbuh) must return to taste it.

Untill, in the article I learnt that Rafa is used for Prophet Idris as well. I did not notice that earlier. But I got stuck somewhere.

There are a few points that trouble me. Please help me in clearing them out.

1.  Mutawaffiika:

Lane's says :
Mutawaffiika (ap-der. m. sing. V.): Cause you to die a natural death.

Some website1 mentioned :

(3:55:6) mutawaffīka = (will) take you

How can I sort this confusion ? Is Lane's work the best that we have as a Lexicon ?


2. For Jesus(pbuh) :

(4:158) rafaʿahu= (he was raised)    l-lahu=(by) Allah    ilayhi=(towards Him).

  For Idris(pbuh) :

(19:57)  warafaʿnāhu= And We raised him     makānan= (to) a position     ʿaliyyan=high.


There seems difference in the Arabic words used by Quran. So, to relate the word 'Rafa' in both Verses (4:158, 19:57), is it correct ? There seems a distinction in the message that both Verses have. Please clarify.


3. Makaanan:

Lane's says:

Kaf-Waw-Nun (Kaf-Alif-Nun) = To be, exist, happen, occur, take place, become, be such or so, originated.
makaan - side, abode, purpose, status, way, condition.
makaanatun - place, way, purpose, intention, condition, ability, place of existence or being.

Some website1 says :

makānan : (to) a position

Which one do you think is the correct rendering of the Arabic word ?


I am also discussing the issue with a friend who is a 'traditionalist'. Any feedback will be very much appreciated.


Thank you

Regards,
Talib

Note:
1 I did not mention the link to the external website as per the Forum Policy. If the administrators want, I can provide.

Offline HOPE

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Re: Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« Reply #1 on: October 16, 2012, 04:50:58 AM »
Salaam Talib,

Quote
(19:57)  warafaʿnāhu= And We raised him     makānan= (to) a position     ʿaliyyan=high.

God raises all pious people

6:165  It is He who has made you successors [of others] on the earth and has exalted some of you over the others in degrees of rank, so that He may test you by that which He has given you. Your Lord is swift in punishment; yet surely He is forgiving, and merciful.

7:176  And if We had pleased, We would certainly have exalted him thereby; but he clung to the earth and followed his low desire, so his parable is as the parable of the dog; if you attack him he lolls out his tongue; and if you leave him alone he lolls out his tongue; this is the parable of the people who reject Our communications; therefore relate the narrative that they may reflect.
"Hope is like a bird that senses the dawn and carefully starts to sing while it is still dark"

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« Reply #2 on: October 16, 2012, 04:57:18 PM »
Dear Talib,

Peace to you.

I am sure you will appreciate, that despite not one unequivocal, explicit statement of the Quran confirming Prophet Jesus's return, the sheer desperation of using 'implied' narratives is clearly evident by those that assert Prophet Jesus's return.

Such a fundamental belief of the traditional masses is not supported by even one explicit statement in the entire Quran.

For an Almighty God that does not run out of words (31:27) and who provides clear guidance (huda), how difficult would it have been for the Quran to provide an explicit statement such as "Jesus will be returning for a second time" if the intention was to establish a fundamental doctrine?

I feel it is important to remember that the burden of proof is clearly with those asserting the claim, to provide unequivocal evidence of Prophet Jesus's return from the Quran. I humbly assert there is not one explicit statement. In contrast, as I have humbly cited in my article, there are numerous verses and theological arguments which negate such a concept.

Regardless, please allow me to humbly address some of your concerns which I understand may form part of your discussion with those that hold a traditional perspective.


1. Mutawaffika

Even today in general Arabic parlance, the verb 'tawaffa' when associated with a soul is well understood to mean death.

I would humbly encourage those who are not fluent with Arabic to conduct an experiment by generally asking a native Arabic speaker (regardless of dialect) the meaning of 'tawaffa' when applied to a soul without reference to the Quran. In my humble opinion, it will become evident how well established and understood this word actually is, even today.

This meaning is even carried by the Quran:

16:28       - whom the angels take (in death) while still they are wronging themselves
16:32       - whom the angels take (in death) while they are goodly
2:234       - those of you who die and leave behind wives
2:240       - those of you who die among you and leave behind wives
22:5         - and among you (is he) who dies

The root meaning of the verb 'tawaffa' to mean receive, to take to oneself is correct from an Arabic linguistic perspective.

However, when applied to a soul, there is not one reference in the Quran of the verb 'tawaffa' or its derivate (yatawaffa, tawaffa, yutawaffa) that I know of in the Quran that does not imply death. This meaning when applied to a soul is also well understood in general Arabic parlance.

With regards to Edward Lane's, his comprehensive, somewhat monumental work offers a translation and summary rendition of the various classical dialogues of Arabic grammarians from antiquity where he cites some of the best works we have in the Arabic language. This is one of the reasons why his works are respected, especially amongst academics in this field of study. The Arabic sources he quotes can always be referenced by those that desire to conduct further study.


2. For Jesus (pbuh)

In my humble opinion, the difference in syntax is simply because different meanings of the overall sentence are intended. However, the meaning of the verb 'rafa'a' when applied to a soul to imply 'to be raised to God's special mercy / high station' does not change.

In verse 19:57, the intention is to confirm and emphasize Prophet Idris's elevated status/ position. In verse 4:158 the intention is to simply relate that Prophet Jesus died and was brought back to God.

With respect, it does amaze me at times how incredibly pedantic the traditional argument becomes when attempts are made to source Quranic support for a doctrine that is only explicitly established in later secondary sources, centuries after the death of the Prophet.


3. Makaanan

I read ‘makanan’ to simply imply a place or a position. This word is of well-established meaning.


I hope that helps, God willing.  :)
Joseph.
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline Talib

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Re: Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« Reply #3 on: October 19, 2012, 01:11:46 AM »
Respected Dear Joseph Islam Sir

Salamun Alaikum

I am very thankful for your response. Thank you for always helping me.

If you don't mind, please help me understand the verse 159 of Surah Nisa.

Wa-in min ahli alkitabi illa layu/minanna bihi qabla mawtihi wayawma alqiyamati yakoonu AAalayhim shaheedan

I read someone translate this as :

And there is none of the People of the Book, but must believe in him (Jesus) before his death; and on the Day of Judgment He will be a witness against them.



Dr. Shabbir Ahmed Sir :

Everyone among the People of the Book must believe before dying, in the truth just stated. Jesus will be a witness against them on the Day of Resurrection. [5:116-117. Neither was he crucified nor raised to the heavens. God is Omnipresent]


I could not find the Arabic of "in the truth just stated" in the above translation. So I am guessing it is the translator's own understanding.

Zaheen Fatima Baig Mam has translated this as:

And there is none from the people of the Scripture but that he will surely believe in him (i.e. Jesus) before his death.


Before who's death ?

I do not know Arabic, but I think that my confusion is about the Subject and Predicate of the Verse. Is it ?

What does "will surely believe in him (i.e. Jesus)" indicate ?
How and when can all Christians and Jews have beleif in him to be merely a prophet , not God ? And secondly, that he was not crucified ? what had / will make them believe this? because it is mentioned that all the Christians and Jews will believe.



Please elaborate.

Thank you

Offline Talib

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Re: Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« Reply #4 on: October 19, 2012, 01:18:05 AM »
Dear Hope

Salamun Alaikum

Thank you for your help. The verses that you referred me to are very important to keep in mind for this subject.

Thanks again.

Regards,
Talib

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2012, 07:30:31 AM »
Dear Talib,

Peace to you.

In response to your question regarding verse 4:159, please see a parallel thread which deals with the very same question you have asked. I have shared my perspectives on the thread in detail.

http://quransmessage.com/forum/index.php?topic=590.0

I hope that helps, God willing.
Joseph.
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline HOPE

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Re: Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2012, 11:56:45 PM »
Salaam Talib,

The idea that Jesus' body moved to heaven came originally from the Christian tradition. Jews believed in the prophecy of the second coming of Messiah and Luke 1:17 says, "He will be a man with the spirit and power of Elijah. He will prepare the people for the coming of the Lord. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and he will cause those who are rebellious to accept the wisdom of the godly."  The verse says in spirit and power yet it translated somehow into Jesus  raised alive to heaven.  Maybe it is because the expected mission was not accomplished and he has to come back to finish the mission.

Quran does not support such an idea. 3:55 clearly shows that he is exalted after his death; he is exalted in rank.  Quran is not saying that he was lifted up to heaven while somebody else who was made to look like him was nailed to the cross.  Quran does not tell us the details after the crucifixion except he and  his mother were given a refuge.  23:50
"Hope is like a bird that senses the dawn and carefully starts to sing while it is still dark"

Offline Talib

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Re: Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« Reply #7 on: October 25, 2012, 06:29:08 AM »
Dear Hope

Walaikum Salaam

Thank you for your input. It makes a lot of sense to me that with the word used in Quran, 'wafat' for around 25 times, where everywhere almost all traditional translators have translated it as death, only with Jesus(pbuh) they have chosen a different meaning. Which, to my knowledge, cannot be supported by Lexicons and the context of Quran in the particular places.

Also, regarding Luke 1:17, I have noted that the Hadith that people provide in terms of Jesus(pbuh) descending from the Heavens, sounds pretty much same. Another reference in the Bible that can be related to the Hadith can be :

Gospel of Mathew (KJV) :

24:30 —- and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 24:33 So likewise ye, when ye shall see all these things, know that it is near, even at the doors. 24:34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.

I suppose, the point to note here is that the Hadith compilers, which are mostly from Iraq (if I am not wrong) have given similar stories in the Ahadith as well. Which can highly be assumed as very problematic.   The biggest proof that we have with us is Quran as Furqan.

I, for sure, agree with the understanding that Jesus(pbuh) is not coming back.

However, I would like your views on 43:61 of Quran. For which the traditional translation is as follows :

And he (Jesus) shall be a known sign for the Hour.Therefore have no doubt concerning it.And follow Me!(Allah) This is the Straight path.


Would appreciate your views on this.

Thank you

Regards,
Talib

Offline Talib

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Re: Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« Reply #8 on: October 25, 2012, 06:43:53 AM »
Respected Dear Joseph Islam Sir

Salamun Alaikum

Thank you once again for directing me to another thread. It surely answers more that I think I could question.

Dear Sir, I would like to understand 43:61 also. The traditional translation of this verse goes like :

And he (Jesus) shall be a known sign for the Hour.Therefore have no doubt concerning it.And follow Me!(Allah) This is the Straight path.

The Arabic word Innahu is supposed to be referring to Jesus(pbuh). How do you think I can understand this verse properly and correctly ? Would you please guide ?

To my understanding, if we take Jesus as a sign of the Hour,  then we have the problem with those verses of Quran which convincingly (by use of Lexicons and context of Verses) speak about the Death of Jesus(pbuh).

I hope to have your valuable understanding on this.

Thank you

Best Regards,
Talib

Offline Joseph Islam

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Re: Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« Reply #9 on: October 25, 2012, 09:28:50 AM »
Dear Talib,

Peace to you.

Please see EVIDENCE 9 in the article below, entitled "RE-INTERPRETATION OF VERSE 43:61 COMMONLY USED TO SUPPORT THE SECOND COMING OF PROPHET JESUS (pbuh)" where I have discussed the verse in question.

http://quransmessage.com/articles/is%20second%20coming%20attested%20by%20the%20quran%20FM3.htm

I hope that helps, God willing.
Joseph.
'During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolutionary act' 
George Orwell

Offline HOPE

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Re: Prophet Idris(pbuh) / Prophet Jesus(pbuh) / Rafa ?
« Reply #10 on: October 25, 2012, 12:06:10 PM »
Dear Talib,

I am honored that you ask my view regarding verse 43:61.  First of all, let me make clear that I do not know any arabic, thus my views are limited by the translations.   What I can gather from many translations, three distinct patterns of thought appear:

1.  Heavily influenced by the 'second coming of Jesus' before the end of time.

2. Ali Unal: "Surely he (Jesus) (brought into the world without a father, and granted such miracles as reviving the dead) is a means to knowledge of the Last Hour, so do not feel any doubt concerning it and follow Me (to attain eternal happiness in the other life). This is a straight path."  He probably means Jesus is a sign of the end of time /judgment day when all will be resurrected like he revived the birds.

3. This revelation regarding Jesus as the last nabi of Israelites is evidence of the knowledge of the Hour of departure of the prophethood from the house of Israel to the house of Ishmael as prophesied in the Bible Matthew 21  The Parable of the Tenants in the Vineyard

33 “Listen to another parable,” Jesus said. “There was once a landowner who planted a vineyard, put a fence around it, dug a hole for the wine press, and built a watchtower. Then he rented the vineyard to tenants and left home on a trip. 34 When the time came to gather the grapes, he sent his slaves to the tenants to receive his share of the harvest. 35 The tenants grabbed his slaves, beat one, killed another, and stoned another. 36 Again the man sent other slaves, more than the first time, and the tenants treated them the same way. 37 Last of all he sent his son to them. ‘Surely they will respect my son,’ he said. 38 But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, ‘This is the owner's son. Come on, let's kill him, and we will get his property!’ 39 So they grabbed him, threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him.
40 “Now, when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?” Jesus asked.
41 “He will certainly kill those evil men,” they answered, “and rent the vineyard out to other tenants, who will give him his share of the harvest at the right time.”
42 Jesus said to them, “Haven't you ever read what the Scriptures say?
‘The stone which the builders rejected as worthless
    turned out to be the most important of all.
This was done by the Lord;
    what a wonderful sight it is!’
43 “And so I tell you,” added Jesus, “the Kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people who will produce the proper fruits.” 44
45 The chief priests and the Pharisees heard Jesus' parables and knew that he was talking about them, 46 so they tried to arrest him. But they were afraid of the crowds, who considered Jesus to be a prophet.

therefore do not doubt about the truth of Quran and follow me as I am your promised nabi,
John 16:12-13
King James Version
12 I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.
13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.


"Hope is like a bird that senses the dawn and carefully starts to sing while it is still dark"