Prohibiting the People of the Book From Going to Extremes in Religion

Allah forbids the People of the Scriptures from going to extremes in religion, which is a common trait of theirs, especially among the Christians. The Christians exaggerated over `Isa until they elevated him above the grade that Allah gave him. They elevated him from the rank of prophethood to being a god, whom they worshipped just as they worshipped Allah. They exaggerated even more in the case of those who they claim were his followers, claiming that they were inspired, thus following every word they uttered whether true or false, be it guidance or misguidance, truth or lies. This is why Allah said,

ุงุชู‘ูŽุฎูŽุฐููˆุงู’ ุฃูŽุญู’ุจูŽู€ุฑูŽู‡ูู…ู’ ูˆูŽุฑูู‡ู’ุจูŽู€ู†ูŽู‡ูู…ู’ ุฃูŽุฑู’ุจูŽุงุจุงู‹ ู…ู‘ูู† ุฏููˆู†ู ุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ู

(They took their rabbis and their monks to be their lords besides Allah.) Imam Ahmad recorded that Ibn `Abbas said that `Umar said that the Messenger of Allah said,

ยซู„ูŽุง ุชูุทู’ุฑููˆู†ููŠ ูƒูŽู…ูŽุง ุฃูŽุทู’ุฑูŽุชู ุงู„ู†ู‘ูŽุตูŽุงุฑูŽู‰ู ุนููŠุณูŽู‰ ุงุจู’ู†ูŽ ู…ูŽุฑู’ูŠูŽู…ูŽ. ููŽุฅูู†ู‘ูŽู…ูŽุง ุฃูŽู†ูŽุง ุนูŽุจู’ุฏูŒููŽู‚ููˆู„ููˆุง: ุนูŽุจู’ุฏูุงู„ู„ู‡ู ูˆูŽุฑูŽุณููˆู„ูู‡ยป

(Do not unduly praise me like the Christians exaggerated over `Isa, son of Maryam. Verily, I am only a servant, so say, `Allah’s servant and His Messenger.’) This is the wording of Al-Bukhari. Imam Ahmad recorded that Anas bin Malik said that a man once said, “O Muhammad! You are our master and the son of our master, our most righteous person and the son of our most righteous person…” The Messenger of Allah said,

ยซูŠูŽุง ุฃูŽูŠู‘ูู‡ูŽุง ุงู„ู†ู‘ูŽุงุณู ุนูŽู„ูŽูŠู’ูƒูู…ู’ ุจูู‚ูŽูˆู’ู„ููƒูู…ู’ุŒ ูˆูŽู„ูŽุง ูŠูŽุณู’ุชูŽู‡ู’ูˆููŠูŽู†ู‘ูŽูƒูู…ู ุงู„ุดู‘ูŽูŠู’ุทูŽุงู†ูุŒุฃูŽู†ูŽุง ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู ุจู’ู†ู ุนูŽุจู’ุฏูุงู„ู„ู‡ูุŒ ุนูŽุจู’ุฏูุงู„ู„ู‡ู ูˆูŽุฑูŽุณููˆู„ูู‡ูุŒ ูˆูŽุงู„ู„ู‡ู ู…ูŽุง ุฃูุญูุจู‘ู ุฃูŽู†ู’ ุชูŽุฑู’ููŽุนููˆู†ููŠ ููŽูˆู’ู‚ูŽ ู…ูŽู†ู’ุฒูู„ูŽุชููŠ ุงู„ู‘ูŽุชููŠ ุฃูŽู†ู’ุฒูŽู„ูŽู†ููŠ ุงู„ู„ู‡ู ุนูŽุฒู‘ูŽ ูˆูŽุฌูŽู„ยป

(O people! Say what you have to say, but do not allow Shaytan to trick you. I am Muhammad bin `Abdullah, Allah’s servant and Messenger. By Allah! I do not like that you elevate me above the rank that Allah has granted me.) Allah’s statement,

ูˆูŽู„ุงูŽ ุชูŽู‚ููˆู„ููˆุงู’ ุนูŽู„ูŽู‰ ุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ู ุฅูู„ุงู‘ูŽ ุงู„ู’ุญูŽู‚ู‘ูŽ

(nor say of Allah except the truth.) means, do not lie and claim that Allah has a wife or a son, Allah is far holier than what they attribute to Him. Allah is glorified, praised, and honored in His might, grandure and greatness, and there is no deity worthy of worship nor Lord but Him. Allah said;

ุฅูู†ู‘ูŽู…ูŽุง ุงู„ู’ู…ูŽุณููŠุญู ุนููŠุณูŽู‰ ุงุจู’ู†ู ู…ูŽุฑู’ูŠูŽู…ูŽ ุฑูŽุณููˆู„ู ุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ู ูˆูŽูƒูŽู„ูู…ูŽุชูู‡ู ุฃูŽู„ู’ู‚ูŽู€ู‡ูŽุง ุฅูู„ูŽู‰ ู…ูŽุฑู’ูŠูŽู…ูŽ ูˆูŽุฑููˆุญูŒ ู…ู‘ูู†ู’ู‡ู

(Al-Masih `Isa, son of Maryam, was (no more than) a Messenger of Allah and His Word, which He bestowed on Maryam and a spirit from created by Him;) `Isa is only one of Allah’s servants and one of His creatures. Allah said to him, `Be’, and he was, and He sent him as a Messenger. `Isa was a word from Allah that He bestowed on Maryam, meaning He created him with the word `Be’ that He sent with Jibril to Maryam. Jibril blew the life of `Isa into Maryam by Allah’s leave, and `Isa came to existence as a result. This incident was in place of the normal conception between man and woman that results in children. This is why `Isa was a word and a Ruh (spirit) created by Allah, as he had no father to conceive him. Rather, he came to existence through the word that Allah uttered, `Be,’ and he was, through the life that Allah sent with Jibril. Allah said,

ู…ู‘ูŽุง ุงู„ู’ู…ูŽุณููŠุญู ุงุจู’ู†ู ู…ูŽุฑู’ูŠูŽู…ูŽ ุฅูู„ุงู‘ูŽ ุฑูŽุณููˆู„ูŒ ู‚ูŽุฏู’ ุฎูŽู„ูŽุชู’ ู…ูู† ู‚ูŽุจู’ู„ูู‡ู ุงู„ุฑู‘ูุณูู„ู ูˆูŽุฃูู…ู‘ูู‡ู ุตูุฏู‘ููŠู‚ูŽุฉูŒ ูƒูŽุงู†ูŽุง ูŠูŽุฃู’ูƒูู„ุงูŽู†ู ุงู„ุทู‘ูŽุนูŽุงู…ูŽ

(Al-Masih `Isa, son of Maryam, was no more than a Messenger; many were the Messengers that passed away before him. His mother Maryam was a Siddiqah. They both ate food.) And Allah said,

ุฅูู†ู‘ูŽ ู…ูŽุซูŽู„ูŽ ุนููŠุณูŽู‰ ุนูู†ุฏูŽ ุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ู ูƒูŽู…ูŽุซูŽู„ู ุกูŽุงุฏูŽู…ูŽ ุฎูŽู„ูŽู‚ูŽู‡ู ู…ูู† ุชูุฑูŽุงุจู ุซูู…ู‘ูŽ ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ู„ูŽู‡ู ูƒูู† ููŽูŠูŽูƒููˆู†ู

(Verily, the likeness of `Isa before Allah is the likeness of Adam. He created him from dust, then (He) said to him: “Be! ู€ and he was.)

ูˆูŽุงู„ู‘ูŽุชูู‰ ุฃูŽุญู’ุตูŽู†ูŽุชู’ ููŽุฑู’ุฌูŽู‡ูŽุง ููŽู†ูŽููŽุฎู’ู†ูŽุง ูููŠู‡ูŽุง ู…ูู† ุฑู‘ููˆุญูู†ูŽุง ูˆูŽุฌูŽุนูŽู„ู’ู†ูŽู€ู‡ูŽุง ูˆูŽุงุจู’ู†ูŽู‡ูŽุข ุกูŽุงูŠูŽุฉู‹ ู„ู‘ูู„ู’ุนูŽู€ู„ูŽู…ููŠู†ูŽ

(And she who guarded her chastity, We breathed into her (garment) and We made her and her son `Isa a sign for all that exits.) (21:91)

ูˆูŽู…ูŽุฑู’ูŠูŽู…ูŽ ุงุจู’ู†ูŽุฉูŽ ุนูู…ู’ุฑูŽุงู†ูŽ ุงู„ู‘ูŽุชูู‰ ุฃูŽุญู’ุตูŽู†ูŽุชู’ ููŽุฑู’ุฌูŽู‡ูŽุง

(And Maryam, the daughter of `Imran who guarded her chastity,) and Allah said concerning the Messiah,

ุฅูู†ู’ ู‡ููˆูŽ ุฅูู„ุงู‘ูŽ ุนูŽุจู’ุฏูŒ ุฃูŽู†ู’ุนูŽู…ู’ู†ูŽุง ุนูŽู„ูŽูŠู’ู‡ู

(He `Isa was not more than a servant. We granted Our favor to him.)

The Meaning of “His Word and a spirit from Him

`Abdur-Razzaq narrated that Ma`mar said that Qatadah said that the Ayah,

ูˆูŽูƒูŽู„ูู…ูŽุชูู‡ู ุฃูŽู„ู’ู‚ูŽู€ู‡ูŽุง ุฅูู„ูŽู‰ ู…ูŽุฑู’ูŠูŽู…ูŽ ูˆูŽุฑููˆุญูŒ ู…ู‘ูู†ู’ู‡ู

(And His Word, which He bestowed on Maryam and a spirit from created by Him;) means, He said,


(Be) and he was. Ibn Abi Hatim recorded that Ahmad bin Sinan Al-Wasiti said that he heard Shadh bin Yahya saying about Allah’s statement,

ูˆูŽูƒูŽู„ูู…ูŽุชูู‡ู ุฃูŽู„ู’ู‚ูŽู€ู‡ูŽุง ุฅูู„ูŽู‰ ู…ูŽุฑู’ูŠูŽู…ูŽ ูˆูŽุฑููˆุญูŒ ู…ู‘ูู†ู’ู‡ู

(and His Word, which He bestowed on Maryam and a spirit from created by Him;) “`Isa was not the word. Rather, `Isa came to existence because of the word.” Al-Bukhari recorded that `Ubadah bin As-Samit said that the Prophet said,

ยซู…ูŽู†ู’ ุดูŽู‡ูุฏูŽ ุฃูŽู†ู’ ู„ูŽุง ุฅูู„ู‡ูŽ ุฅูู„ู‘ูŽุง ุงู„ู„ู‡ูุŒ ูˆูŽุญู’ุฏูŽู‡ู ู„ูŽุง ุดูŽุฑููŠูƒูŽ ู„ูŽู‡ูุŒ ูˆูŽุฃูŽู†ู‘ูŽ ู…ูุญูŽู…ู‘ูŽุฏู‹ุง ุนูŽุจู’ุฏูู‡ู ูˆูŽุฑูŽุณููˆู„ูู‡ูุŒ ูˆูŽุฃูŽู†ู‘ูŽ ุนููŠุณูŽู‰ ุนูŽุจู’ุฏูุงู„ู„ู‡ู ูˆูŽุฑูŽุณููˆู„ูู‡ู ูˆูŽูƒูŽู„ูู…ูŽุชูู‡ู ุฃูŽู„ู’ู‚ูŽุงู‡ูŽุง ุฅูู„ู‰ ู…ูŽุฑู’ูŠูŽู…ูŽ ูˆูŽุฑููˆุญูŒ ู…ูู†ู’ู‡ูุŒ ูˆูŽุฃูŽู†ู‘ูŽ ุงู„ู’ุฌูŽู†ู‘ูŽุฉูŽ ุญูŽู‚ู‘ูŒุŒ ูˆูŽุงู„ู†ู‘ูŽุงุฑูŽ ุญูŽู‚ู‘ูŒุŒ ุฃูŽุฏู’ุฎูŽู„ูŽู‡ู ุงู„ู„ู‡ู ุงู„ู’ุฌูŽู†ู‘ูŽุฉูŽ ุนูŽู„ูŽู‰ ู…ูŽุง ูƒูŽุงู†ูŽ ู…ูู†ูŽ ุงู„ู’ุนูŽู…ูŽู„ยป

(If anyone testifies that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah Alone Who has no partners, and that Muhammad is His servant and Messenger, and that `Isa is Allah’s servant and Messenger and His Word which He bestowed on Maryam and a spirit created by Him, and that Paradise is true and Hell is true, then Allah will admit him into Paradise with the deeds which he performed.) In another narration, the Prophet said,

ยซู…ูู†ู’ ุฃูŽุจู’ูˆูŽุงุจู ุงู„ู’ุฌูŽู†ู‘ูŽุฉู ุงู„ุซู‘ูŽู…ูŽุงู†ููŠู‘ูŽุฉู ูŠูŽุฏู’ุฎูู„ู ู…ูู†ู’ ุฃูŽูŠู‘ูู‡ูŽุง ุดูŽุงุกยป

(…through any of the eight doors of Paradise he wishes.) Muslim also recorded it. Therefore, `Ruh from Allah’, in the Ayah and the Hadith is similar to Allah’s statement,

ูˆูŽุณูŽุฎู‘ูŽุฑูŽ ู„ูŽูƒูู…ู’ ู…ู‘ูŽุง ููู‰ ุงู„ุณู‘ูŽู…ูŽู€ูˆูŽุชู ูˆูŽู…ูŽุง ููู‰ ุงู„ุงู‘ูŒุฑู’ุถู ุฌูŽู…ููŠุนุงู‹ ู…ู‘ูู†ู’ู‡ู

(And has subjected to you all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth; it is all from Him.) meaning, from His creation. `from Him’ does not mean that it is a part of Him, as the Christians claim, may Allah’s continued curses be upon them. Saying that something is from Allah, such as the spirit of Allah, the she-camel of Allah or the House of Allah, is meant to honor such items. Allah said,

ู‡ูŽู€ุฐูู‡ู ู†ูŽุงู‚ูŽุฉู ุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ู

(This is the she-camel of Allah…) and,

ูˆูŽุทูŽู‡ู‘ูุฑู’ ุจูŽูŠู’ุชูู‰ูŽ ู„ูู„ุทู‘ูŽุขุฆููููŠู†ูŽ

(and sanctify My House for those who circumambulate it.) An authentic Hadith states,

ยซููŽุฃูŽุฏู’ุฎูู„ู ุนูŽู„ูŽู‰ ุฑูŽุจู‘ููŠ ูููŠ ุฏูŽุงุฑูู‡ยป

(I will enter on my Lord in His Home) All these examples are meant to honor such items when they are attributed to Allah in this manner. Allah said,

ููŽู€ูŽุงู…ูู†ููˆุงู’ ุจูุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ู ูˆูŽุฑูŽุณููˆู„ูู‡ู

(so believe in Allah and His Messengers.) believe that Allah is One and Alone and that He does not have a son or wife. Know and be certain that `Isa is the servant and Messenger of Allah. Allah said after that,

ูˆูŽู„ุงูŽ ุชูŽู‚ููˆู„ููˆุงู’ ุซูŽู„ูŽู€ุซูŽุฉูŒ

(Say not: “Three!”) do not elevate `Isa and his mother to be gods with Allah. Allah is far holier than what they attribute to Him. In Surat Al-Ma’idah (chapter 5), Allah said,

ู„ู‘ูŽู‚ูŽุฏู’ ูƒูŽููŽุฑูŽ ุงู„ู‘ูŽุฐููŠู†ูŽ ู‚ูŽุงู„ููˆุงู’ ุฅูู†ู‘ูŽ ุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ูŽ ุซูŽู€ู„ูุซู ุซูŽู„ูŽู€ุซูŽุฉู ูˆูŽู…ูŽุง ู…ูู†ู’ ุฅูู„ูŽู€ู‡ู ุฅูู„ุงู‘ูŽ ุฅูู„ูŽู€ู‡ูŒ ูˆูŽุญูุฏูŒ

(Surely, disbelievers are those who said: “Allah is the third of the three.” But there is none who has the right to be worshipped but One God.) Allah said by the end of the same Surah,

ูˆูŽุฅูุฐู’ ู‚ูŽุงู„ูŽ ุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ู ูŠุนููŠุณูŽู‰ ุงุจู’ู†ูŽ ู…ูŽุฑู’ูŠูŽู…ูŽ ุฃูŽุกูŽู†ุชูŽ ู‚ูู„ุชูŽ ู„ูู„ู†ู‘ูŽุงุณู ุงุชู‘ูŽุฎูุฐููˆู†ูู‰

(And (remember) when Allah will say (on the Day of Resurrection): “O `Isa, son of Maryam! Did you say unto men: `Worship me”‘) and in its beginning,

ู„ู‘ูŽู‚ูŽุฏู’ ูƒูŽููŽุฑูŽ ุงู„ู‘ูŽุฐููŠู†ูŽ ู‚ูŽุขู„ููˆุงู’ ุฅูู†ู‘ูŽ ุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ูŽ ู‡ููˆูŽ ุงู„ู’ู…ูŽุณููŠุญู ุงุจู’ู†ู ู…ูŽุฑู’ูŠูŽู…ูŽ

(Surely, in disbelief are they who say that Allah is the Messiah, son of Maryam.) The Christians, may Allah curse them, have no limit to their disbelief because of their ignorance, so their deviant statements and their misguidance grows. Some of them believe that `Isa is Allah, some believe that he is one in a trinity and some believe that he is the son of Allah. Their beliefs and creeds are numerous and contradict each other, prompting some people to say that if ten Christians meet, they would end up with eleven sects!

The Christian Sects

Sa`id bin Batriq, the Patriarch of Alexandria and a famous Christian scholar, mentioned in the year four hundred after the Hijrah, that a Christian Council convened during the reign of Constantine, who built the city that bears his name. In this Council, the Christians came up with what they called the Great Trust, which in reality is the Great Treachery. There were more than two thousand patriarchs in this Council, and they were in such disarray that they divided into many sects, where some sects had twenty, fifty or a hundred members, etc.! When the king saw that there were more than three hundred Patriarchs who had the same idea, he agreed with them and adopted their creed. Constantine who was a deviant philosopher — gave his support to this sect for which, as an honor, churches were built and doctrines were taught to young children, who were baptized on this creed, and books were written about it. Meanwhile, the king oppressed all other sects. Another Council produced the sect known as the Jacobites, while the Nestorians were formed in a third Council. These three sects agreed that `Isa was divine, but disputed regarding the manner in which `Isa’s divinity was related to his humanity; were they in unity or did Allah incarnate in `Isa! All three of these sects accuse each other of heresy and, we believe that all three of them are disbelievers. Allah said,

ุงู†ุชูŽู‡ููˆุงู’ ุฎูŽูŠู’ุฑุงู‹ ู„ู‘ูŽูƒูู…ู’

(Cease! (it is) better for you.) meaning, it will be better for you,

ุฅูู†ู‘ูŽู…ูŽุง ุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ู ุฅูู„ูŽู€ู‡ูŒ ูˆูŽุญูุฏูŒ ุณูุจู’ุญูŽู€ู†ูŽู‡ู ุฃูŽู† ูŠูŽูƒููˆู†ูŽ ู„ูŽู‡ู ูˆูŽู„ูŽุฏูŒ

(For Allah is (the only) One God, hallowed be He above having a son.) and He is holier than such claim,

ูˆูŽู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ู ู…ูŽุง ููู‰ ุงู„ุณู‘ูŽู…ูŽู€ูˆูŽุชู ูˆูŽู…ูŽุง ููู‰ ุงู„ุงู‘ูŒุฑู’ุถู ูˆูŽูƒูŽููŽู‰ ุจูุงู„ู„ู‘ูŽู‡ู ูˆูŽูƒููŠู„ุงู‹

(To Him belongs all that is in the heavens and all that is in the earth. And Allah is All-Sufficient as a Disposer of affairs,) for all are creatures, property and servants under His control and disposal, and He is the Disposer of the affairs. Therefore, how can He have a wife or a son among them,

ุจูŽุฏููŠุนู ุงู„ุณู‘ูŽู…ูŽู€ูˆูŽุชู ูˆูŽุงู„ุงู‘ูŒุฑู’ุถู ุฃูŽู†ู‘ูŽู‰ ูŠูŽูƒููˆู†ู ู„ูŽู‡ู ูˆูŽู„ูŽุฏูŒ

(He is the originator of the heavens and the earth. How can He have children.) and

ูˆูŽู‚ูŽุงู„ููˆุงู’ ุงุชู‘ูŽุฎูŽุฐูŽ ุงู„ุฑู‘ูŽุญู’ู…ูŽู€ู†ู ูˆูŽู„ูŽุฏุงู‹ – ู„ูŽู‚ูŽุฏู’ ุฌูุฆู’ุชูู…ู’ ุดูŽูŠู’ุฆุงู‹ ุฅูุฏู‘ุงู‹

(And they say: “The Most Gracious (Allah) has begotten a son. Indeed you have brought forth (said) a terrible evil thing.”) Up to His saying,



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