Responses to Osama Abdallah

Did Muhammad really recognize the Bible as an error-free book?

Sam Shamoun

The following article is a response to the false assertions made by Osama Abdallah in his article found here.

Osama tries to demonstrate that both the Judeo-Christian and Muslim sources claim that the Holy Bible is corrupt and unreliable. Osama begins by misapplying the following passages:

Introduction: We must first of all know that the entire Bible is corrupted and unreliable and is mostly filled with man-made laws and corruption! GOD Almighty Said: "`How can you say, "We [the Jews] are wise, for we have the law of the LORD," when actually the lying pen of the scribes has handled it falsely?' (From the NIV Bible, Jeremiah 8:8)" The Revised Standard Version makes it even clearer: "How can you say, 'We are wise, and the law of the LORD is with us'? But, behold, the false pen of the scribes has made it into a lie. (From the RSV Bible, Jeremiah 8:8)"

In either translation, we clearly see that the Jews had so much corrupted the Bible with their man-made cultural laws, that they had turned the Bible into a lie!

See Also Deuteronomy 31:25-29 where Moses peace be upon him predicted the corruption/tampering of the Law (Bible) after his death.

The Book of Moses predicted that the Law (Bible) will get corrupted. The Book of Jeremiah which came approximately 826 years after did indeed confirm this corruption.


First, Osama misapplies the passage in Deuteronomy since it says absolutely nothing about corruption to the Law. Here is the passage in question:

"he gave this command to the Levites who carried the ark of the covenant of the Lord : ‘Take this Book of the Law and place it beside the ark of the covenant of the Lord your God. There it will remain as a witness against you. For I know how rebellious and stiff-necked you are. If you have been rebellious against the Lord while I am still alive and with you, how much more will you rebel after I die! Assemble before me all the elders of your tribes and all your officials, so that I can speak these words in their hearing and call heaven and earth to testify against them. For I know that after my death you are sure to become utterly corrupt and to turn from the way I have commanded you. In days to come, disaster will fall upon you because you will do evil in the sight of the Lord and provoke him to anger by what your hands have made.’" Deuteronomy 31:25-29

We challenge Osama to show us anywhere in this passage where God says that the Law would be corrupted after the death of Moses. The passage is simply stating that much like the Israelites were disobedient to God's Law even while Moses was present with them, they would continue to disobey after Moses was gone. And much like the Law was available in an uncorrupt form during Moses' time, despite Israel's unfaithfulness, the Law would continue to remain intact even after the death of Moses. So we see that this passage says nothing about corruption to the Torah.

Second, is it true that Jeremiah was claiming that the text of the Law had been corrupted? Or was Jeremiah stating that the Law had been misinterpreted through the written interpretation of the scribes? To find the answer let us look at the overall context of Jeremiah, as well as the entire context of the Holy Bible:

"Say to them, ‘This is what the LORD says: If you do not listen to me and follow MY LAW, which I have set before you, and if you do not listen to the words of my servants the prophets, whom I have sent to you again and again (though you have not listened) then I will make this house like Shiloh and this city an object of cursing among all the nations of the earth.’" Jeremiah 26:4-6

How could Israel follow the Law, i.e. the Torah, if it had been corrupted? This presupposes that the Torah was uncorrupt and available during the time of Jeremiah. Since Jeremiah wrote Jeremiah 8:8, who better than he to tell us the precise meaning of the passage in question? That Jeremiah appeals to the Law of Moses throughout his book demonstrates quite clearly that the Prophet did not believe that the scribes had corrupted the actual text of the Torah.

The prophet Daniel provides additional support:

"In the first year of Darius son of Xerxes (a Mede by descent), who was made ruler over the Babylonian kingdom- in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, understood from the Scriptures, according to the word of the LORD given to Jeremiah the prophet, that the desolation of Jerusalem would last seventy years. So I turned to the LORD and pleaded with him in prayer and petition, in fasting, and in sackcloth and ashes." Daniel 9:1-3

Daniel is reading Jeremiah 25:11, 12 and 29:10 where God predicts that Israel would be taken into captivity to Babylon for 70 years. After reading this, Daniel continues to pray and says:

"Therefore the curses and sworn judgments WRITTEN IN THE LAW OF MOSES, the servant of God, have been poured out on us, because we have sinned against you. You have fulfilled the words spoken against us and against our rulers by bringing upon us great disaster. Under the whole heaven nothing has ever been done like what has been done to Jerusalem. JUST AS IT IS WRITTEN IN THE LAW OF MOSES, all this disaster has come upon us, yet we have not sought the favor of the LORD our God by turning from our sins and giving attention to your truth." Daniel 9:11b-13

In order for Daniel to appeal to what was written in the Law of Moses an uncorrupt Torah must have been available during the time of Daniel. Furthermore, after having read Jeremiah Daniel never concludes that the Torah had been corrupted, but appeals to it as the inspired word of God. This would be a strange conclusion for Daniel to come to if Jeremiah 8:8 indeed meant that the text of the Torah had been corrupted during Jeremiah's time. Therefore, seeing that Daniel was a contemporary of Jeremiah and had an uncorrupt copy of the Torah in his possession conclusively proves that the Torah existed in an unadulterated form during Jeremiah's time.

"They read from the Book of the Law of God, making it clear and giving the meaning so that the people could understand what was being read ... On the second day ... they gathered around Ezra the scribe to give attention to the words of the Law. They found written in the Law, which the LORD had commanded through Moses, that the Israelites were to ... Day after day, from the first day to the last, Ezra read from the Book of the Law of God ..." Nehemiah 8:13-14,18

This occurred approximately 430 B.C., nearly 180 years after Jeremiah's temple address, which took place in 609 or 608 B.C. (see Jeremiah 26:1). Again, in order for Ezra the scribe to be able to both read from the Law of Moses and expound it presupposes that a true, uncorrupt copy of the Torah was available at that time.

Furthermore, the Lord Jesus and his followers quoted from the Torah as we know it today and never assumed that it was corrupt (cf. Matthew 4:4,7,10; 22:31-32; 1 Timothy 5:18). In fact, Jesus claimed that the Torah as it exists would not pass away until all was fulfilled:

"I tell you the truth, until heaven and earth disappear, not the smallest letter, not the least stroke of a pen, will by any means disappear from the Law until everything is accomplished." Matthew 5:18

In light of the preceding factors, the only plausible contextual meaning is that the scribes were misleading the people either through their oral traditions and/or the writing down of erroneous interpretations of the Law. A similar situation existed in the time of the Lord Jesus Christ:

"Then some Pharisees and teachers of the law came to Jesus from Jerusalem and asked, ‘Why do your disciples break the tradition of the elders? They don't wash their hands before they eat!’ Jesus replied, ‘And why do you break the command of God for the sake of your tradition? ... Thus you nullify the word of God for the sake of your tradition. You hypocrites! Isaiah was right when he prophesied about you: "these people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me. They worship me in vain; their teachings are but rules taught by men."’" Matthew 15:1-3,6b-9

It is therefore quite plausible that Jeremiah was rebuking the scribes for their traditions that lead people astray from the word of God. That this is the more plausible meaning becomes evident in light of what immediately follows:

"The wise will be put to shame; they will be dismayed and trapped. Since they have rejected the word of the LORD, what kind of wisdom do they have." Jeremiah 8:9

Finally, even if this passage were referring to the actual corruption of the text, this would only be referring to the copies that were in the possession of the scribes. This wouldn't apply to all the copies of the Torah, copies that were in the possession of godly men like Daniel. These men faithfully read, cherished, applied and preserved God's holy word.

Amazingly, it is the Quran that admits to its very own corruption:

"Like as We sent down on the dividers Those who made the Quran INTO SHREDS." S. 15:90-91

Scholar in Islamic studies Alphonse Mingana comments on this passage:

"Finally, if we understand correctly the following verse of Suratul-Hijr (xv. 90-91): ‘As we sent down upon (punished) the dividers (of the Scripture?) who broke up the Koran into parts,’ we are tempted to state that even when the Prophet was alive, some changes were noticed in the recital of certain verses of his sacred book. There is nothing very surprising in this fact, since Muhammad could not read or write, and was at the mercy of friends for the writing of his revelations, or, more frequently, of some mercenary amanuenses." (Mingana, "Three Ancient Korans", The Origins of the Koran - Classic Essays on Islam’s Holy Book, ed. by Ibn Warraq [Prometheus Books, Amherst NY, 1998], p. 84; bold emphasis ours)

Mingana records the Muslim reaction to Uthman b. Affan's burning and wholesale destruction of primary, competing Quranic codices:

"The book, drawn up by this method, continued to be authoritative and the standard text till 29-30 A.H. under the caliphate of 'Uthman. At this time the wonderful faithfulness of Arab memory was defective, and according to a general weakness of human nature, the Believers have been heard reciting the verses of the Koran in a different way. This fact was due specially, it is said, to the hundreds of dialects used in Arabia. Zaid was again asked to put an end to these variations which had begun to scandalize the votaries of the Prophet. That indefatigable compiler, assisted by three men from the tribe of Quraish, started to do what he had already done more than fifteen years before. The previous copies made from the first one written under Abu Bakr were all destroyed by special order of the caliph: the revelation sent down from heaven was one, and the book containing this revelation must be one. The critic remarks that the only guarantee of the authenticity of the Koran is the testimony of Zaid; and for this reason, a scholar who doubts whether a given word has been really used by Muhammad, or whether it has been only employed by Zaid on his own authority, or on the meagre testimony of some Arab reciters, does not transgress the strict laws of high criticism. If the memory of the followers of the Prophet has been found defective from the year 15 to 30 A.H. when Islam was proclaimed over all Arabia, why may it not have been defective from 612 to 632 C.E. when the Prophet was often obliged to defend his own life against terrible aggressors? And if the first recension of Zaid contained always the actual words of Muhammad, why was this compiler not content with re-establishing it in its entirety, and why was the want of a new recension felt by 'Uthman? How can it be that in the short space of fifteen years such wonderful variants could have crept into the few copies preceding the reign of the third caliph that he found himself bound to destroy all those he could find? If 'Uthman was certainly inspired only by religious purposes, why did his enemies call him ‘THE TEARER OF THE BOOKS’ and why did they fasten on him the following stigma: ‘He found the Korans many and left one; HE TORE UP THE BOOK’? ..." (Ibn Warraq, p. 84-85; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Mingana, in his article The Transmission of the Koran, cites Muslim historian al-Tabari:

"... ‘Ali b. Abi Talib, and ‘Uthman b. Affan wrote the Revelation to the Prophet; but in their absence it was Ubai b. Ka’b and Zaid b. Thabit who wrote it.’ He informs us, too, that the people said to ‘Uthman: ‘The Koran was in many books, and thou discreditedst them all but one’; and after the Prophet's death, ‘People gave him as successor Abu Bakr, who in turn was succeeded by ‘Umar; and both of them acted according to the Book and the Sunnah of the Apostle of God - and praise be to God the Lord of the worlds; then people elected ‘Uthman b. ‘Affan WHO ... TORE UP THE BOOK.’" (Ibn Warraq, p. 102; bold and capital emphasis ours)

We therefore see that it is the Quran that has been corrupted, a fact admitted by both Muslim and non-Muslim sources alike.


Did Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him really recognize the Bible as an error-free book?

The sections of this article are:

1-  Did Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him really recognize
      the Bible as an error-free book?
2-  What about the Jews whom the Prophet punished according
      to their Mosaic Law?


The quick answer is yes. Muhammad did recognize the Holy Bible as an error free book, as we will now seek to demonstrate.


Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him never recognized the Bible as an error-free book:

Narrated AbuNamlah al-Ansari: "When he was sitting with the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) and a Jew was also with him, a funeral passed by him. He (the Jew) asked (Him): Muhammad, does this funeral speak? The Prophet (peace_be_upon_him) said: Allah has more knowledge. The Jew said: It speaks.

The Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) said: Whatever the people of the Book [Jews and Christians] tell you, do not verify them, nor falsify them, but say: We believe in Allah and His Apostle. If it is false, do not confirm it, and if it is right, do not falsify it. (Translation of Sunan Abu-Dawud, Knowledge (Kitab Al-Ilm), Book 25, Number 3637)"


Not only has Osama misapplied passages of the Holy Bible, but he has also misapplied and misinterpreted the preceding Muslim tradition. The tradition says absolutely nothing about the text of the Holy Bible. It simply refers to statements made by the Jews and Christians that may or may not have been correct. Yet the issue of the validity of the text of the Holy Bible is simply not addressed. We will have more to say about this below.


The following two Sayings of our beloved Prophet Muhammad peace be upon him were sent to me by Yusif 65 may Allah Almighty always be pleased with him:

Narrated Ubaidullah: "Ibn 'Abbas said, 'Why do you ask the people of the scripture about anything while your Book (Quran) which has been revealed to Allah's Apostle is newer and the latest? You read it pure, undistorted and unchanged, and Allah has told you that the people of the scripture (Jews and Christians) changed their scripture and distorted it, and wrote the scripture with their own hands and said, 'It is from Allah,' to sell it for a little gain. Does not the knowledge which has come to you prevent you from asking them about anything? No, by Allah, we have never seen any man from them asking you regarding what has been revealed to you!' (Translation of Sahih Bukhari, Holding Fast to the Qur'an and Sunnah, Volume 9, Book 92, Number 461)"


This tradition seems to convincingly prove that Ibn Abbas did believe that the text of the Holy Bible had been corrupted. That is of course until we consider his views in context. Note what Ibn Abbas is reported to have also said regarding the Holy Bible:

Mujahid, Ash-Sha'bi, Al-Hassan, Qatadah and Ar-Rabi' bin Anas said that,

<who distort the Book with their tongues.>

means, "They alter (Allah's Words)."

Al-Bukhari reported that Ibn 'Abbas said that the Ayah means they alter and add although none among Allah's creation CAN REMOVE THE WORDS OF ALLAH FROM HIS BOOKS, THEY ALTER AND DISTORT THEIR APPARENT MEANINGS. Wahb bin Munabbih said, "The Tawrah and Injil REMAIN AS ALLAH REVEALED THEM, AND NO LETTER IN THEM WAS REMOVED. However, the people misguide others by addition and false interpretation, relying on books that they wrote themselves." Then,

<they say: "This is from Allah," but it is not from Allah;>

As for Allah's books, THEY ARE STILL PRESERVED AND CANNOT BE CHANGED." Ibn Abi Hatim recorded this statement ... (Tafsir Ibn Kathir – Abridged, Volume 2, Parts 3, 4 & 5, Surat Al-Baqarah, Verse 253, to Surat An-Nisa, verse 147 [Darussalam Publishers & Distributors, Riyadh, Houston, New York, Lahore; First Edition: March 2000], p. 196; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Here is the full quotation of Al-Bukhari regarding Ibn Abbas' view of the Bible:

Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitaab Al-Tawheed, Baab Qawlu Allah Ta’ala, "Bal Huwa Qur’aanun Majeed, fi lawhin Mahfooth" (i.e. in Sahih al-Bukhari, Book "The Oneness of God", the Chapter on Surat Al-Borooj (no. 85), Verses 21, 22 saying, "Nay this is a Glorious Qur'an, (Inscribed) in a Tablet Preserved.") we find in a footnote between 9.642 and 643:

"They corrupt the word" means "they alter or change its meaning." Yet no one is able to change even a single word from any Book of God. The meaning is that they interpret the word wrongly. [... and he continues to speak about how the Qur'an is preserved ...]

This is the Tafseer (commentary) of Abdullah Ibn Abbas, one of the Sahaba (companions) and Mohammed's cousin. His opinions (because he is a Sahabi (companion) are held to be above the opinions and commentaries of all other Sheikhs who are not Sahaba.

Since Ibn Abbas' above reference to "They corrupt the word" quotes part of Sura 4:46, it is not only a commentary on Sura 85:22, but also on the meaning of the Quranic charge against the Jews of corrupting the scriptures. (Source)

This supports the view that Ibn Abbas's comment refers to the misinterpretation of the text and to the concoction of false revelation, which the Jews then tried to pass off as revelation. It does not refer to the actual corruption of the Holy Bible itself. This is further supported from the very same hadith cited by Osama. In the above hadith, Ibn Abbas is purported to have said:

"... You read it pure, undistorted and unchanged, and Allah has told you that the people of the scripture (Jews and Christians) changed their scripture and distorted it, and wrote the scripture with their own hands and said, ‘It is from Allah,’ to sell it for a little gain ..."

The above citation seems to refer to the following Quranic passages:

"So woe to those who write the Book with their hands, and then say, ‘This is from Allah,’ that they may sell it for a little price. So woe to them for what their hands have written, and woe to them for their earnings." S. 2:79

This seems to imply Biblical corruption until we look at its original context:

"Can you (O men of faith) still earnestly desire that they (the Jews) will believe in you? And verily a party (fariq) among them hear the Word of God, then they pervert it knowingly after they have understood it. And when they meet the believers they say, ‘We believe,’ but when they meet each other in private they say, ‘Why do you tell them what God has revealed to you (in the Torah), that they may engage you in argument about it before their God? What do you not understand?’ Do they not know that God knows what they conceal and what they make public? Among them are unlettered folk who know the Scripture not except from hearsay. THEY BUT GUESS." S. 2:75-78

Once the passage is read in its proper context, we discover that it is not speaking of Jews and Christians corrupting their Holy Book, but rather unlettered Jews who were ignorant of the content of the scriptures and falsified their own revelation for gain.

Here is the other passage that Ibn Abbas seems to be referring:

"There is among them a section who distort the Book WITH THEIR TONGUES: (As they read) you would think it is a part of the Book, but it is no part of the Book; and they say, ‘That is from Allah,’ but it is not from Allah. It is they who tell a lie against Allah, and (well) they know it!" S. 3:78

Here, the changes and distortion refers to a misinterpretation of the text, i.e. "with their tongues". The people were evidently reciting or quoting certain things and passing it off as being part of the actual text. This view is in accord with Al-Bukhari's citation of Ibn Abbas, where the latter stated that the Jews changed and distorted the apparent meanings of the scriptures, yet the text remained unchanged.

Some Muslims have tried to undermine Al-Bukhari's tradition regarding Ibn Abbas' view of the Holy Bible by stating that the former provided no chain of transmission in which the authenticity of the report can be assessed. This attempt of evasion will not solve the problem for the Muslims. It is often claimed that Al-Bukhari was the most careful collector of Muslim traditions, omitting thousands of hadiths that did not meet his strict specifications of authenticity. Note the following comments to the English translation of Al-Bukhari's hadith collection:

It has been UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that Imam Bukhari's work is the most authentic of all the other works in Hadith literature PUT TOGETHER. The authenticity of Al-Bukhari's work is such that the religious learned scholars of Islam said concerning him: "The most authentic book after the Book of Allah (i.e., Al-Qur'an) is Sahih Al-Bukhari." ...

Before he recorded each Hadith he would make ablution and offer two Rak’at prayer and supplicate his Lord (Allah). Many religious scholars of Islam tried to find fault in the great remarkable collection- Sahih Al-Bukhari, BUT WITHOUT SUCCESS. It is for this reason, they UNANIMOUSLY AGREED that the most authentic book after the Book of Allah IS Sahih Al-Bukhari. (Translation of the Meanings of Summarized Sahih Al-Bukhari, Arabic-English, translated by Dr. Muhammad Taqi-ud-Din Al-Hilali, Islamic University, Al-Madina Al-Munawwara, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia; compilation: Al-Imam Zain-ud-Din Ahmad bin Abdul-Lateef Az-Zubaidi [Maktaba Dar-us-Salam Publishers & Distributors, Riyadh-Saudi Arabia, 1994], pp. 18-19; bold and capital emphasis ours)

The following citations are taken from the Islamic Awareness team's response to Andrew Vargo's criticism of Imam Bukhari's collection:

* The two sahīh collections did not gather the totality of the authentic ahādīth as proved by al-Bukhārī's testimony: "I have not included in my book al-Jāmic but what is authentic, and I left out among the authentic for fear of [excessive] length.(Footnote 2)"

Footnote 2 says:

He [al-Bukhārī] meant that he did not mention all the turuq [parallel chains of transmission] for each and every hadīth.[1]

To reiterate this in elementary English for the neophyte, Imām al-Bukhārī selected only a few authentic ahādīth from his vast collection. However, he left out certain traditions, despite their authenticity, simply to avoid excessive length and repetition in his al-Jāmic (a discussion about which is given below). If anything, the privilege to make such a gesture is highly complimentary to the authenticity of the Islamic traditions. In another tradition, Imām al-Bukhārī is also reported to have said:

He said, I heard as-Sacdānī say, I heard some of our companions say, Muhammad Ibn Ismācīl said: I selected/published [the content of] this book - meaning the Sahih book - from about 600,000 hadīths/reports. Abū Sacd al-Mālīnī informed us that cAbdullāh Ibn cUdayy informed us: I heard al-Hasan Ibn al-Husayn al-Bukhārī say: "I have not included in my book al-Jāmic but what is authentic, and I left out among the authentic what I could not get hold of."[2]


Imām al-Bukhārī's collection of ahādīth was maintained to be authentic on account of his authority, and it has been maintained as authentic ever since. The neophyte's assertion, that Imām al-Bukhārī regarded almost 99% of his own collection as spurious, is among the most rash and foolhardy statements ever dared by a Christian missionary. On the contrary, the 7,397 refers to the number of hadīths that Imām al-Bukhārī chose to include in his al-Jāmic and left out many authentic narrations from his vast collection for the fear of excessive length.

…Regardless, we will quote the famous trial of Imām al-Bukhārī to show how Maqlub[8] (changed, reversed) ahadīth can be identified with ease by a scholar of hadīth:

The famous trial of al-Bukhārī by the scholars of Baghdad provides a good example of a Maqlūb isnād. The traditionists, in order to test their visitor, al-Bukhārī, appointed ten men, each with ten ahādīth. Now, each hadīth (text) of these ten people was prefixed with the isnād of another. Imām al-Bukhārī listened to each of the ten men as they narrated their ahādīth and denied the correctness of every hadīth. When they had finished narrating these ahādīth, he addressed each person in turn and recounted to him each of his ahādīth with its correct isnād. This trial earned him great honour among the scholars of Baghdad.[9]

(Source:; bold and italic emphasis ours)

In light of all this, the fact that Al-Bukhari included this tradition implies that this report met Al-Bukhari's strict specifications and he was therefore convinced of its reliability.

If we also add to the equation the following Quranic references regarding Jews and Christians who knew their scriptures and would not dare falsify it, then the claim of Bible corruption becomes even more untenable:

"And there are, certainly, among the People of the Book, those who believe in God, and that which has been revealed to you, in that which has been revealed to them, bowing in humility to God. They will not sell the signs of God for miserable gain. For them is a reward with their Lord, and God is swift in account." S. 3:199

"NOT ALL OF THEM ARE ALIKE. Some of the People of the Book are an upright people. They recite the signs (or verses) of God in the night season and they bow down worshipping. They believe in God and the last day. They command what is just, and forbid what is wrong and they hasten in good works, and they are of the righteous." S. 3:113-114

Finally, a careful reading of S. 2:75-78 shows that the Jews were also accused of falsifying the Quran. The claim that a party (fariq) among the Jews heard the Word of God, then perverted it knowingly after they had understood it, seems to be an echo of the following passage:

"Seest thou not those unto whom a portion of the Scripture hath been given, how they purchase error, and seek to make you (Muslims) err from the right way? Allah knoweth best (who are) your enemies. Allah is sufficient as a Guardian, and Allah is sufficient as a Supporter. Some of those who are Jews change words from their context and say: ‘We hear and disobey; hear thou as one who heareth not’ and ‘Listen to us!’ distorting with their tongues and slandering religion. If they had said: ‘We hear and we obey: hear thou, and look at us' it had been better for them, and more upright. But Allah hath cursed them for their disbelief, so they believe not, save a few. O ye unto whom the Scripture hath been given! Believe in what We have revealed confirming that which ye possess, before We destroy countenances so as to confound them, or curse them as We cursed the Sabbath-breakers (of old time). The commandment of Allah is always executed." S. 4:44-47

Yusuf Ali comments on S. 4:44-47:

"... A trick of the Jews was to twist words and expressions, so as to ridicule the most solemn teachings of the Faith. Where they should have said, ‘We hear and we obey,’ they said aloud, ‘We hear,’ and whispered, ‘We disobey.’ Where they should have said respectfully, ‘We hear,’ they added in a whisper, ‘What is not heard,’ by way of ridicule. Where they claimed the attention of the Teacher, they used an ambiguous word apparently harmless, but their intention disrespectful." (Ali, The Holy Qur'an, p. 194, f. 565)


"... ‘Ra'ina‘ if used respectfully in the Arabic way, would have meant ‘Please attend to us.’ With the twist of their tongue, they suggested an insulting meaning, such as ‘O thou that takest us to pasture!’, or in Hebrew, ‘Our bad one!’" (Ibid, f. 566)

If Osama's logic is valid, then we are forced to conclude that the Jewish perversion of the Quran by their tongues meant that they corrupted the text of the Quran as well.

In light of the preceding considerations, Ibn Abbas' statement regarding the distortion of the previous scriptures can only be referring to the misinterpretation of the text and to the writing of false books passed off as the word of God. It has nothing to do with an actual corruption of the text itself.

(NOTE- We would like to clarify our use of Al-Bukhari. Our quotation from Al-Bukhari regarding Ibn Abbas, as well as the other Muslim sources regarding Al-Bukhari's credibility, doesn't imply that we accept the claims being made. Rather, we are simply pointing out that the hadiths as they stand do not support the Muslim claims of Bible corruption. Whether these hadiths actually stem from the time of Muhammad is highly doubtful. The fact that Al-Bukhari and others believed they were authentic, only serves to refute those Muslims who try to undermine certain hadiths such as the one regarding Ibn Abbas's positive view of the Holy Bible.)


Narrated Abu Huraira: "The people of the Book used to read the Torah in Hebrew and then explain it in Arabic to the Muslims. Allah's Apostle said (to the Muslims). 'Do not believe the people of the Book, nor disbelieve them, but say, 'We believe in Allah and whatever is revealed to us, and whatever is revealed to you.' ' (Translation of Sahih Bukhari, Holding Fast to the Qur'an and Sunnah, Volume 9, Book 92, Number 460)"


Carefully note what is actually being said:

Narrated Abu Huraira: "The people of the Book used to read the Torah IN HEBREW and then explain it IN ARABIC TO THE MUSLIMS. Allah's Apostle said (to the Muslims). 'Do not believe the people of the Book, nor disbelieve them, but say, 'We believe in Allah and whatever is revealed to us, and whatever is revealed to you.' (Translation of Sahih Bukhari, Holding Fast to the Qur'an and Sunnah, Volume 9, Book 92, Number 460)"

Muhammad is not attacking the reliability of the Holy Bible, but rather is rejecting the Arabic explanation of the Hebrew Bible by the Jews. Since Muhammad couldn't read Hebrew, he couldn't tell whether the Jews were accurately and honestly explaining the Hebrew text in the Arabic language. It is little wonder that the former warned his community regarding the Jews' explanation. So we again see Osama misapplying his own Muslim sources.


As we clearly see in the above Sayings of our beloved Prophet peace be upon him, we see that the source that the Jews and Christians use (i.e. the Bible or any other religious source such as their Popes', Rabbis or other religious people's verdicts) must be ignored because it is not reliable. As we've seen in the above introduction, the man-made scribes (laws) had corrupted the Bible and turned it "into a lie" (Jeremiah 8:8).

Please visit According to Islam, why did GOD Almighty allow for the Bible to get corrupted?

Just who were the real authors of the Bible? Today's Books and Gospels' authors of the Bible are UNKNOWN. See the comments that prove that from the Theologians and Historians of the NIV Bible from the NIV Bible itself! Just why in the world should I believe in today's Bible?


As we have shown, the above sayings of Muhammad DO NOT support biblical corruption. If anything, the reverse is true. Osama not only misapplies biblical citations, but does the very same thing with his own Muslim sources.

Please read the following rebuttals to Osama's distortions and misquotations: [1], [2], [3], [4].

And here are a few others for good measure: [1], [2].


What about the Jews whom the Prophet punished according to their Mosaic Law?

The following was sent to me by brother Johnny Bravo; may Allah Almighty always be pleased with him.

The missionary argument is that Islamically the Bible is accurate because Prophet Muhammed peace be upon him ruled according to one of its law. This is indeed very funny. Christian Missionary, Sam Shamoun, after distorting dozens of verses from the Holy Quran and amazing his with his funny interpretations, informs his readers:

"Our usage of the Quran does not imply our belief in its authority nor its inspiration. We quote it solely for the sake of convincing the Muslims of the Bible's authority and authenticity as a fact confirmed by their religious text."


We have already begun responding to Bravo's erroneous claims and gross misuse and misapplication of scholarly sources. To read some of the rebuttals please go here [1], [2], [3], [4], [5].

More responses are scheduled to appear later. Lord Jesus willing, we will also be responding to Bravo's false assertions regarding the views of Abu Ghazali and Ibn Taimiyyah on the issue of biblical corruption.


Precisely! Similarly, the ruling of stoning applied to the Jew and Jewess according to the Jewish scriptures also does not imply that the entire text of the Jewish Christian scriptures is authentic and pristine. Prophet Muhammed peace be upon him was *also* using it as his evidence against the Jews. Yes there were many addition and deletion in the Jewish scriptures, they were corrupted, but despite their corruption, they still contained enough truth in them to lead any person to Islam. Thus, had the Jews followed their own book, they would have had no other choice but to become Muslims because their book still contained enough truth therein to lead a person to Islam. The problem with the Jews was that they didn't even bother to follow that which they themselves considered to be Divinely revealed by Allah.

The punishment for stoning for example is the authentic revelation from Allah which we find intact in even the present day Jewish scriptures, but these Jews during the time of Prophet Muhammed peace be upon him did not bother to follow this Law revealed by Allah. Had they applied all the laws and commandments in their scriptures, never mind the corruption, they would have had no choice but to become Muslims.


Bravo commits the fallacy of false analogy. Bravo has falsely assumed that Muhammad appealed to the Torah of his day in the same way that I have appealed to the Quran. Yet this is clearly false. Whereas I do not believe that the Quran is the word of God, Muhammad did believe in the Torah as the revealed word of God. Muhammad also believed that the Torah of his day was the pristine word of God, as we have already shown and will show again shortly. Bravo has assumed that Muhammad believed that the Torah of his day was not in its pure pristine form, and then proceeds to read this erroneous and unproven assumption into his reading of the traditions. Yet neither Bravo nor Osama has supplied us with any proof for their erroneous assertion. As we will now see, Muhammad clearly believed that the Torah of his time was the original Torah given by God to Moses.


Well known commentator Ibn Kathir, explains:

"These Hadith's (Saying of Prophet Muhammad in Arabic) state that the Messenger of Allah peace be upon him issued a decision that conforms with the ruling in the Tawrah, not to honour the Jews in what they believe in, for the Jews were commanded to follow the Law of Muhammad peace be upon him only. Rather, the Prophet peace be upon him did this because Allah commanded him to do so.

He asked them about the ruling of stoning in the Tawrah to make them admit to what the Tawrah (Torah) contains and what they collaborated to hide, deny and exclude from implementing for all that time.  They had to admit to what they did, although they did it while having knowledge of the correct ruling.  What made them go to the Prophet peace be upon him for judgement in this matter was their lusts and desires, hoping that the Prophet peace be upon him would agree with their opinion, not that they believed in the correctness of his judgement."

[Tafsir Ibn Kathir Abridged. Volume 3. Pg. 182.  Darussalam Publishers and Distributors. 2000]

Sheikh Abdurrahman Abdul-Khaaliq states:

"The Torah, the Old Testament, and the Gospel, the New testament, still contain some truth and guidance that can be evidence against Jews and Christians. If they implemented their laws, Jews and Christians would believe in the Prophet Muhammad's message, confirming what was sent before him, and thus would follow the guidance and light. Muhammad was sent down with clear evidence to his truthfulness and he followed the path of the Prophets before him, who were sent to the Jews and the Christians."

[Sheikh Abdurrahman Abdul-Khaaliq. "The Bible's Testimony that Jesus is the Slave-Servant, and Messenger of Allah." pg. 8. The Daar of Islamic Heritage 1994]


Nothing stated by Ibn Kathir comes close to proving that Muhammad believed that the Torah had been changed. In fact, when we take into consideration the following citations, the reverse is actually true:

"Salih b. Kaisan from Nafi‘, freedman of ‘Abdullah b. Umar from Abdullah b. Umar, told me: When the apostle gave judgement about them HE ASKED FOR A TORAH. A rabbi sat there reading it having put his hand over the verse of stoning. ‘Abdullah b. Salam struck the rabbi’s hand, saying, ‘This, O prophet of God, is the verse of stoning which he refused to read to you. The apostle said, ‘Woe to you Jews! What has induced you to abandon the judgement of God WHICH YOU HOLD IN YOUR HANDS?’ They answered: ‘The sentence used to be carried out until a man of royal birth and noble origin committed adultery and the king refused to allow him to be stoned. Later another committed adultery and the king wanted him to be stoned but they said No, until you stone so-and-so. And they did away with all mention of stoning.’ The apostle said, ‘I am the first to revive the order from God AND HIS BOOK and to practice it.’ They were duly stoned and Abdullah b. Umar said, ‘I was among those that stoned them.’ (Alfred Guillaume, The Life of Muhammad [Oxford University Press, Karachi], p. 267; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Notice that Muhammad asked FOR A TORAH, not a corrupted Torah. Muhammad claims that he is the first to revive what is in GOD'S BOOK, AND PRACTICES WHAT IT ENTAILED. Would Bravo or Osama dare enter a Synagogue and claim that they practice what the Torah in the hands of the Jews commands regarding adultery, since it is GOD'S BOOK? Or would they rather claim that the Torah in the possession of the Jews has been tampered with? It is clear that they would opt for the latter, which only demonstrates that THEY ARE NOT FOLLOWING THE EXAMPLE OF THEIR PROPHET, since he clearly believed that the Torah in his possession was true and uncorrupt.

The following tradition provides addition evidence for the existence of an uncorrupt Bible:

"When the Christians of Najran came to the apostle the Jewish rabbis came also and they disputed one with the other before the apostle. Rafi' said, ‘You have no standing,’ and he denied Jesus and the Gospel; and a Christian said to the Jews, ‘You have no standing’ and he denied that Moses was a prophet and denied the Torah. So God sent down concerning them: ‘The Jews say the Christians have no standing; and the Christians say that the Jews have no standing, and yet they read the scriptures. They do not know what they are talking about. God will judge between them on the day of resurrection concerning their controversy,’ i.e. each one reads IN HIS BOOK THE CONFIRMATION OF WHAT HE DENIES, so that the Jews deny Jesus though THEY HAVE THE TORAH in which God required them BY THE WORD OF MOSES TO HOLD JESUS TRUE; while IN THE GOSPEL IS WHAT JESUS BROUGHT IN CONFIRMATION OF MOSES AND THE TORAH HE BROUGHT FROM GOD: so each one denies WHAT IS IN THE HAND OF THE OTHER." (Guillaume, p. 258; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Ibn Ishaq clearly states that the TORAH OF MOSES and the GOSPEL OF JESUS were both extant and in the HANDS of the Jews and Christians of Muhammad's time.

"Rafi b. Haritha and Sallam b. Mishkam and Malik b. al-Sayf and Rafi b. Huraymila came to him [Muhammad] and said: ‘Do you not allege that you follow the religion of Abraham and believe in the Torah WHICH WE HAVE and testify that it is the truth from God?’ He replied, ‘CERTAINLY, but you have sinned and broken the covenant CONTAINED THEREIN and concealed what you were ordered to make plain to men, and I dissociate myself from your sin.’ They said, ‘We hold by WHAT WE HAVE. We live according to the guidance and the truth and we do not believe in you and we will not follow you.’ So God sent down concerning them: ‘Say, O Scripture folk, you have no standing until you observe the Torah and the Gospel and what has been sent down from your Lord. What has been sent down to thee from they Lord will assuredly increase many of them in error and unbelief. But be not sad because of the unbelieving people.’" (Guillaume, p. 268; bold and capital emphasis ours)

Here was a great opportunity for Muhammad to claim that the Torah had been changed. Instead, he claims to believe in the Torah available at his time. He calls it "Allah's Book". Would he have called it Allah's book if it contained much corruption by the hand of men?

Narrated Abdullah Ibn Umar:

A group of Jews came and invited the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) to Quff. So he visited them in their school.

They said: AbulQasim, one of our men has committed fornication with a woman; so pronounce judgment upon them. They placed a cushion for the Apostle of Allah (peace_be_upon_him) who sat on it and said: Bring the Torah. It was then brought. He then withdrew the cushion from beneath him AND PLACED THE TORAH ON IT saying: I BELIEVED IN THEE and in Him Who REVEALED THEE.

He then said: Bring me one who is learned among you. Then a young man was brought. The transmitter then mentioned the rest of the tradition of stoning similar to the one transmitted by Malik from Nafi'(No. 4431). (Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 38, Number 4434)

The respect and love shown to the Torah only serves to expose Bravo's and Osama's desperate attempts of evading the indisputable fact. Muhammad didn't say to bring him a corrupted Torah, nor did he say that he believed in the Torah before it had been corrupted. Rather, he affirms that the Torah in his possession was that which God had revealed. It is little wonder that he placed it on a cushion, showing it the very same respect that he would give to the Quran. Again, we need to ask if whether Bravo or Osama would do likewise, taking a modern copy of the Torah and place it on a cushion as a sign of respect? If not, then they only demonstrate that they truly do not follow the example of their prophet.


So there we go. It is worth noting that the Quran does not mention any "Bible" or "Mathew", "Mark", "Genesis", "Numbers" etc.  The Quran only mentions the Tauraat revealed to Musa (Moses) peace be upon him and the Injeel (Gospel) revealed to Esa (Jesus) peace be upon him. Not any Gospel "according to Mathew" etc.  The Quran is MUHAYMIN over the previous scriptures (5:48), meaning criteria, watcher-over, control, guardian, dominant, trustworthy, witness, rectifying etc. So whatever agrees with the Quran we accept that we reject whatever disagrees with the Quran. The present day Jewish Christian scriptures may contain truth in them, we do not deny that, however their also contain the words of man and errors, interpolations and deletions.  A Muslim is commanded to use the Quran as the judge (5:48) to separate the truth from falsehood.

Please visit According to Islam, why did GOD Almighty allow for the Bible to get corrupted?

Just who were the real authors of the Bible? Today's Books and Gospels' authors of the Bible are UNKNOWN. See the comments that prove that from the Theologians and Historians of the NIV Bible from the NIV Bible itself! Just why in the world should I believe in today's Bible?


Even though it might be true that the Quran does not directly mention Matthew or Mark, it does refer to Genesis and Numbers as well as alluding to the Bible. That mention is made of the Torah is proof that the Quran is in fact referring to Genesis and Numbers, since these books constitute the Torah of Moses. The Quran also refers to the Kitab (Book), which is the Arabic equivalent of "Bible", as even Muhammad Asad realized in his translation:

"... And so We have cast enmity and hatred among the followers of the Bible ..." S. 5:64 (Asad, The Message of the Qur'an [Dar Al-Andaulus, Gibraltar, rpt. 1994], p. 157; bold emphasis ours)

"If the followers of the Bible would but attain to [true] faith and God-consciousness, we should indeed efface their [previous] bad deeds, and indeed bring them into gardens of bliss;" S. 5:65 (Ibid.; bold emphasis ours)

The reference to the "Book" of the Jews and Christians would naturally include all the books listed within it, such as the Pentateuch, the four Gospels etc.

Interestingly, the Quran actually quotes from both Numbers and Mark, referring to them as the Torah and the Injil respectively:

"Muhammad is the messenger of Allah; and those who are with him are strong against Unbelievers, (but) compassionate amongst each other. Thou wilt see them bow and prostrate themselves (in prayer), seeking Grace from Allah and (His) Good Pleasure. On their faces are their marks, (being) the traces of their prostration. This is their similitude IN THE TAURAT; and their similitude IN THE GOSPEL IS: like a seed which sends forth its blade, then makes it strong; it then becomes thick, and it stands on its own stem, (filling) the sowers with wonder and delight. As a result, it fills the Unbelievers with rage at them. Allah has promised those among them who believe and do righteous deeds forgiveness, and a great Reward." S. 48:29

This passage claims that there is a description of Muslims IN the Torah and the Gospel, implying that these books were extant during Muhammad's time. Interestingly, A. Yusuf Ali claims that the description of Muslims in the Torah and the Gospel is an allusion to Numbers 16:22 and Mark 4:27-28:

"... In the Book of Moses, which is now found in a corrupt form in the Pentateuch, the posture of humility in prayer is indicated by prostration: e.g. Moses and Aaron ‘fell upon their faces’, Num. xvi. 22." (Ali, The Holy Qur'an - Meaning and Translation, p. 1400, n. 4916; bold emphasis ours)

Ali erroneously claims that the Pentateuch only contains portions from the Book of Moses, and that it is not the actual revelation given to Moses, despite the fact that the verse itself claims that Moses' Torah WAS AVAILABLE during the time of Muhammad! Aside from his erroneous claim, Ali indirectly testifies that the book of Numbers is part of the Torah given to Moses!

Ali continues:

... The similitude in the Gospel is about how the good seed is sown and grown gradually, even beyond the expectation of the sower: "the seed should spring and grow up, he knoweth not how; for the earth bringeth forth fruit of herself; first the blade, then the ear, after that the full corn in the earth"; Mark, iv 27-28 ... (Ibid., n. 4917; bold emphasis ours)

This again presumes that the Gospel of Mark formed part of the Gospel that the Quran claims was sent down to Jesus.

Finally, S. 5:48 and the Arabic word MUHAYMIN does not support biblical corruption, as we have already demonstrated in this article.

That Bravo and Osama can only repeat outdated arguments which have been thoroughly addressed, further indicates the weakness of their case against the integrity of the Holy Bible.

We will be following up this rebuttal with an examination of the issue of stoning in Islam, and its relevance to the corruption of the Quran.

Until then, we continue to remain in the service of our risen Lord and eternal Savior Jesus Christ forever, by God's sovereign grace. Amen. Come Lord Jesus. We love you forever, risen Lord of eternal glory.

NOTE-For further reading we recommend the articles found in the section What the Qur'an Says about the Bible.

Rebuttals to Answering-Christianity
Further articles by Sam Shamoun
Answering Islam Home Page