Answering Islam - A Christian-Muslim dialog

Allah – The Not So Divine One!

Sam Shamoun

Bassam Zawadi takes a shot at addressing my articles (1, 2) on the Quran likening Allah to an impotent, fallible human being.

Once Allah was lost but now is found!

Zawadi begins his tirade by claiming that he will focus on only two of my main points since most of my arguments were “too stupid” and “intellectually bankrupt” to even bother addressing. In reality, this is nothing more than an implicit admission that Zawadi wasn’t capable of providing a meaningful refutation to my objections and therefore had to save face by coming up with an excuse for ignoring the great bulk of my article. It is also an admission that the two arguments he did focus on are not “too stupid” or “intellectually bankrupt” since he did choose to try and refute them.

Zawadi tries to tackle my point concerning Allah being on the straight path – much like Muslims are supposed to be – by erroneously accusing me of committing the fallacy of equivocation. Here is the verse in question:

Lo! I have put my trust in Allah, my Lord and your Lord. Not an animal but He doth grasp it by the forelock! Lo! my Lord is on a straight path. S. 11:56 Pickthall

In making this assertion, Zawadi demonstrates that he has no clue what this logical fallacy (or any other fallacy for that matter!) actually entails.

If anything, it is Zawadi who assumes that the phrase “on a straight path” must have a different meaning when it is used for Allah. However, instead of quoting Quranic verses to establish his case, Zawadi runs instead to the Islamic scholars to bail his god out of the mess which he created for himself. He cites al-Qurtubi who claims that Allah being on a straight path actually means that he deals with his servants with perfect justice!

It is rather unfortunate for Zawadi that he is incapable of seeing how such replies do more damage and harm to his cause than good. Zawadi consistently fails to see how his appeal to uninspired, fallible expositors nullifies the Quran’s repeated assertion that it is a perspicuous scripture which completely explains all of its verses:

Thus doth God MAKE CLEAR His Signs to you: In order that ye may understand. S. 2:242 Y. Ali  

And thus do We explain the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) IN DETAIL, that the way of the Mujrimun (criminals, polytheists, sinners), may become manifest. S. 6:55 Hilali-Khan

It is He Who has set the stars for you, so that you may guide your course with their help through the darkness of the land and the sea. We have (indeed) explained IN DETAIL Our Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, Revelations, etc.) for people who know. It is He Who has created you from a single person (Adam), and has given you a place of residing (on the earth or in your mother's wombs) and a place of storage [in the earth (in your graves) or in your father's loins]. Indeed, We have EXPLAINED IN DETAIL Our revelations (this Qur'an) for people who understand. S. 6:97-98

Thus We explain variously the Verses so that they (the disbelievers) may say: "You have studied (the Books of the people of the Scripture and brought this Qur'an from that)" and that We may make the matter clear for the people who have knowledge. S. 6:105 Hilali-Khan

[Say (O Muhammad)] "Shall I seek a judge other than Allah while it is He Who has sent down unto you the Book (The Qur'an), EXPLAINED IN DETAIL." Those unto whom We gave the Scripture [the Taurat (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel)] know that it is revealed from your Lord in truth. So be not you of those who doubt. S. 6:114 Hilali-Khan

And this is the Path of your Lord (the Qur'an and Islam) leading Straight. We have DETAILED Our Revelations for a people who take heed. S. 6:126

Say (O Muhammad): "Who has forbidden the adoration with clothes given by Allah, which He has produced for his slaves, and At-Taiyibat [all kinds of Halal (lawful) things] of food?" Say: "They are, in the life of this world, for those who believe, (and) exclusively for them (believers) on the Day of Resurrection (the disbelievers will not share them)." Thus We explain the Ayat (Islamic laws) IN DETAIL for people who have knowledge. S. 7:32 Hilali-Khan Mecca

Certainly, We have brought to them a Book (the Qur'an) which We have explained IN DETAIL WITH KNOWLEDGE, - a guidance and a mercy to a people who believe. S. 7:52 Hilali-Khan

Thus do We explain the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) IN DETAIL, so that they may turn (unto the truth). S. 7:174 Hilali-Khan

But if they repent, perform As-Salat (Iqamat-as-Salat) and give Zakat, then they are your brethren in religion. (In this way) We explain the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) IN DETAIL for a people who know. S. 9:11 Hilali-Khan

And this Qur'an is not such as could ever be produced by other than Allah (Lord of the heavens and the earth), but it is a confirmation of (the revelation) which was before it [i.e. the Taurat (Torah), and the Injeel (Gospel), etc.], and A FULL EXPLANATION of the Book (i.e. laws and orders, etc, decreed for mankind) - wherein there is no doubt from the Lord of the 'Alamin (mankind, jinns, and all that exists). S. 10:37 Hilali-Khan

Alif Lam Ra. A Book whose verses ARE SET CLEAR (ohkimat), and then distinguished, from One All-wise, All-aware: S. 11:1 Arberry

Indeed in their stories, there is a lesson for men of understanding. It (the Qur'an) is not a forged statement but a confirmation of Allah's existing Books [the Taurat (Torah), the Injeel (Gospel) and other Scriptures of Allah] and A DETAILED EXPLANATION OF EVERYTHING and a guide and a Mercy for the people who believe. S. 12:111

One day We shall raise from all Peoples a witness against them, from amongst themselves: and We shall bring thee as a witness against these (thy people): and We have sent down to thee the Book EXPLAINING ALL THINGS, a Guide, a Mercy, and Glad Tidings to Muslims. S. 16:89 Y. Ali

He sets forth for you a parable from your ownselves, - Do you have partners among those whom your right hands possess (i.e. your slaves) to share as equals in the wealth We have bestowed on you? Whom you fear as you fear each other? Thus do We explain the signs IN DETAIL to a people who have sense. S. 30:28 Hilali-Khan

We verily, have made it a Qur'an in Arabic, that you may be able to understand (its meanings and its admonitions). S. 43:3 Hilali-Khan

By the manifest Book (this Qur'an) THAT MAKES THINGS CLEAR, S. 44:2 Hilali-Khan


A Book whereof the Verses are explained IN DETAIL; A Qur'an in Arabic for people who know. S. 41:3 Hilali-Khan

Here is how another version translates this text:

A scripture whose verses PROVIDE THE COMPLETE DETAILS, in an Arabic Quran, for people who know. Khalifa – cf. Q. 2:187, 219, 242, 266; 3:103, 118; 4:26, 176; 5:89; 15:1; 16:103; 24:18, 58-59, 61; 57:17

It also refutes Muhammad’s boast that Allah had gifted him with pithy expressions and the most eloquent speech:

Narrated Abu Huraira:
The Prophet said, "I have been given the keys of eloquent speech and given victory with awe (cast into the hearts of the enemy), and while I was sleeping last night, the keys of the treasures of the earth were brought to me till they were put in my hand." Abu Huraira added: Allah's Apostle left (this world) and now you people are carrying those treasures from place to place. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 9, Book 87, Number 127)

Abu Burda reported on the authority of his father: Allah's Messenger sent me and Mu'adh to Yemen saying: Call people (to the path of righteousness) and give good tidings to the (people), and do not repel them, make things easy for them and do not make things difficult. I (Burda) said: Allah's Messenger, give us a religious verdict about two kinds of drinks which we prepare in Yemen. One is Bit' which is prepared from honey; it is a fermented Nabidh and is strong and turns into wine, and (the second is) Mizr which is prepared from millet and barley. Thereupon, Allah's Messenger, who had been gifted with the most eloquent and pithy expressions, said: I forbid you from every intoxicant that keeps you away from prayer. (Sahih Muslim, Book 023, Number 4961)

In light of such assertions, Zawadi needs to explain to us why didn’t Allah provide the explanation for what it means for him to be on the straight path in the very book which he claims is fully detailed? Why did he fail to provide this information in a scripture that claims to be clear and an explanation of everything?

Moreover, why couldn’t Allah cause his messenger to express the fact that the Muslim deity is perfectly just to all his servants in a more eloquent manner, one which would avoid the confusion of likening Muhammad’s deity to a lost person who has been guided to the path which leads to salvation?

Weren’t Allah and his messenger capable of not using language which would call into question the supposed perfection of the Islamic deity? Weren’t either of them [cap]able of expressing themselves in such a way so as to avoid portraying the Muslim god as a lost soul who needed to be guided like other lost, imperfect sinners?

In fact, couldn’t Allah have simply caused Muhammad to recite the verse in the following manner?

“… Lo! my Lord deals with all his servants in perfect justice.” S. 11:56


“… Lo! my Lord is perfectly just to all his servants.”

These renderings are clear and to the point. They avoid the confusion created by the way the text appears in the present day Quran which was edited by Uthman and his associates.

Allah is a Believer too!

Zawdi tries to tackle the problem with the Quran calling Allah a believer (al-mu’min):

He is Allah; there is no god but He. He is the King, the All-holy, the All-peaceable, the All-Believing/the Believer (al-mu'minu), the All-preserver, the All-mighty, the All-compeller, the All-sublime. Glory be to Allah, above that they associate! S. 59:23

Once again, instead of proving his case by appealing to the fully detailed and perspicuous Quran, Zawadi runs to another Muslim scholar to save the day, namely Shaykh Al-Munajjid.

According to this scholar, al-mu’min means that Allah is one who fulfills his promise, who accepts his believing slaves, who gives security to his close friends by keeping them safe from punishment and torment, and who will accept the testimony of his Muslim slaves on the day of resurrection!

What makes this rather comical is that Zawadi seriously expects us to believe that al-mu'min encompasses all of these meanings at the same time!

Moreover, do the readers notice the one definition which is conveniently missing from this list? If you guessed “the believer” then you would be right, even though this is the consistent meaning of the phrase throughout the Quran!

What makes this so bad for Zawadi is that he failed to see how the other terms which I mentioned in my article, namely al-Amin (“The Faithful”) and as-Sadiq (“The Trustworthy”), do a far better job of communicating the fact that Allah possesses all these qualities than al-mu'min does.

After all, to say that Allah is trustworthy and faithful means that he can be trusted to fulfill his promise, accept his believing slaves, give security to his close friends by keeping them safe from punishment and torment, will accept the testimony of his Muslim slaves on the day of resurrection etc., because he is faithful to do all that he says.

More importantly, these terms avoid identifying Allah as someone who, like his creatures, exercises personal belief, which is precisely what the word al-mu’min conveys.

In conclusion, Zawadi’s “reply” once again confirmed that he is dealing with issues that are simply beyond his intellectual capacities to adequately address. Zawadi lacks the ability to think logically and critically, which is why he is constantly producing rebuttals that end up embarrassing both himself and his fellow Muslims.

Zawadi’s “rebuttal” failed to refute the fact of his scripture likening Allah to his creation, ascribing to the Islamic deity the same sort imperfections and needs which are common to all creatures.

With that said, Zawadi needs to come to grips with reality. He must accept the fact that it is time for him to not only find another line of work, but also to find a new religion since neither Allah nor his messenger are proving to be of any benefit or help.

It must really bother Zawadi that a non-Arab is constantly correcting and improving upon the alleged perfect grammatical structure and eloquence of a book which claims to be from the one true God of all.


I want to thank both Anthony Rogers and Jochen Katz for their valuable feedback.