Prophets of Islam

Being reading up on the Prophets of Islam to learn a bit more about them. Rather than teaching us valuable lessons from the lives of these Prophets, we were taught which war was fought when and so on. It would have been great if someone could have at least given a lecture on the lives of these prophets whom Allah sent to the Earth to guide human beings to the righteous path. Anyway here are some of the stuff I got from from The place is like a cave full of jewellery for a treasure hunter of information :)

Prophets in the Qur’an

The following are named as prophets in the Qur’an (Arabic); their Biblical/English names are given in parentheses.

Adam آدم
Adam is the first prophet of Islam and the first human being. He was created by God (Arabic:Allah) but brought to life forty days after being kept as a dry body. He is an important figure in Judaism and Christianity as well and he is best known for the story of Adam and Eve.

Idris (Enoch) ادريس
In Islam, Enoch (Arabic:Idris) lived during a period of drought inflicted by God (Arabic:Allah) to punish the people of the world who had forgotten him. Enoch prayed to God for salvation and an end to the suffering and so the world received rain. Enoch is also credited in Islam with introducing writing, astronomy, and mathematics.

Nuh (Noah) نوح
Although best known for the Deluge (mythology)Deluge, Noah (Arabic:Nuh) was a primary preacher of monotheism at his time. According to Islamic tradition, it was this faithfulness to God (Arabic:Allah) that led to his selection for building Noah’s Ark, the Ark that would continue life on Earth. In contrast with Christianity and Judaism  traditions which say the Deluge was a global event, there is some difference in opinion in Islam over whether the flood associated with Noah was localized or global.

Hud (Eber) هود
According to Islam, Eber (Arabic:Hud), for whom the eleventh chapter (Arabic:eleventh sura) of the Qur’an is named, was one of the few people to survive a great storm inflicted by God (Arabic:Allah), like with the Deluge five generations earlier, to punish the people of the world who had forgotten about God.

Saleh (Shelah) صالح
According to the Qur’an, Shelah (Arabic:Saleh) was ordered by God (Arabic:Allah) to leave behind his people after they disobeyed God’s order to care for a special camel and instead killed it. In Shelah’s absence, God punished the people with a large earthquake.

Ibrahim (Abraham) إبراهيم
Abraham (Arabic:Ibrahim) is regarded by Muslims today as one of the significant prophets as he is credited with building the Kaaba in Mecca (Makkah). His family, including his son Ismail, is also credited with helping create the civilization around Makkah that would later give birth to the final prophet of Islam, Muhammad. Abraham is also noted for almost sacrificing his son Ishmael (Arabic:Ismail) for God (Arabic:Allah) in an event now commemorated annually by Eid ul-Adha. He is also the first prophet to name the believers as “Muslims” meaning “those with full submission to Allah”.

Lut (Lot) لوط
Lot (Arabic:Lut) is most notable in Islam for attempting to preach against homosexuality in Sodom and Gomorra, only to be mocked and ignored by the people who lived there.

Ismail (Ishmael) اسماعيل
Ishmael (Arabic:Ismail), first-born son of Abraham (Arabic:Ibrahim), is a notable prophet in Islam for his near-sacrifice in adulthood. According to Islamic tradition, as a child he and his mother Hagar‘s search for water in the region around Mecca Makkah led God (Arabic:Allah) to reveal the Zamzam Well which still flows to this day.

Ishaq (Isaac) اسحاق
According to Islamic tradition, Isaac (Arabic:Ishaq), second-born son of Abraham (Arabic:Ibrahim), became a prophet in Canaan. He, along with his brother Ishmael (Arabic:Ismail), carried on the legacy of Abraham as prophets of Islam.

Yaqub (Jacob) يعقوب
Jacob (Arabic:Yaqub), according to the Qur’an was “of the company of the Elect and the Good”[2] and he continued the legacy of both his father, Isaac (Arabic:Ishaq), and his grandfather, Abraham (Arabic:Ibrahim). Like his ancestors, he was committed to worshiping one God.

Yusuf (Joseph) يوسف
Joseph (Arabic:Yusuf), son of Jacob (Arabic:Yaqub) and great-grandson of Abraham (Arabic:Ibrahim), became a prominent adviser to the pharaoh of Egypt since he was believed to have seen a dream that predicted the economic state of Egypt. He spent a large part of his life away from his eleven brothers, who, jealous of Joseph’s success, told their father Jacob that Joseph had died.

Ayub (Job) أيوب
According to Islamic tradition, Job (Arabic:Ayyub) was rewarded by a fountain of youth, which removed all illnesses except death, for his service to God (Arabic:Allah) in his hometown outside Al Majdal. Job is believed to have suffered an illness for 18 years as a patience test by God.

Shoaib (Jethro) شعيب
Jethro (Arabic:Shoaib) was a direct descendant of Abraham (Arabic:Ibrahim). According to Islam, he was appointed by God (Arabic:Allah) to guide the people of Midyan and Aykah, who lived near Mount Sinai. When the people of the region failed to listen to his warnings, God destroyed the disbeliever’s villages.

Musa (Moses) موسى
Moses (Arabic:Musa), referred to in the Qur’an more than any other prophet, is significant for revealing the Torah (Arabic:Tawrat) to the Ancient Egypt Egyptians. The Qur’an says Moses realized his connection with God (Arabic:Allah) after receiving commands from him during a stop at Mount Sinai. He later went on to free the enslaved Hebrews after failing to convince the Egyptian pharaoh of God’s power. Moses subsequently led the freed Hebrews for forty years through the desert on a long attempt to capture Canaan, the Promised Land. During this long journey, Moses received the Torah and the Ten Commandments during another trip to Mount Sinai. At the end of his life, according to Islamic tradition, Moses chose to die to be closer to God instead of taking an offer that would have extended his life.

Harun (Aaron) هارون
Aaron (Arabic:Harun) served as an assistant to his elder brother Moses (Arabic:Musa). In Islam, he, like Moses, was given the task of saving the Israelites from the Egyptian pharaoh. He would often speak for Moses when Moses’s speech impediment prevented him from doing so himself.

Dhul-Kifl (most likely Ezekiel) ذو الكفل
The status of Dhul-Kifl as a prophet is debatable within Islam, although both sides can agree that he was indeed a righteous man who strived in the way of God (Arabic:Allah).

Dawood (David) داوود
In Islam, the Psalms (Arabic:Zabur) were revealed to David (Arabic:Dawood) by God (Arabic:Allah). He is also significant as he is the one who defeated Goliath.

Sulayman (Solomon) سليمان
Solomon (Arabic:Sulayman) learned a significant amount from his father David (Arabic:Daud) before being made a prophet by God (Arabic:Allah). According to Islamic tradition, Solomon was given power over all things, including the jinns. Known for his honesty and fairness, he also led a kingdom that extended into southern Arabia.

Ilyas (Elijah) إلياس
Elijah (Arabic:Ilyas), descendant of Aaron (Arabic:Harun), took over control of the southern part of the Arabian Peninsula after Solomon’s (Arabic:Sulayman) kingdom collapsed. Islamic tradition says he attempted to convince the people of the Peninsula of the existence of only one God, but when the people refused to listen they were smitten with a drought and famine.

Al-Yasa (Elisha) اليسع
Elisha (Arabic:Al-Yasa) took over the job of leading the Israelites after Elijah’s (Arabic:Ilyas) death. He attempted to show the king and queen of Israel the powers of God (Arabic:Allah), but was dismissed as a magician. Subsequently, the Assyrians were able to conquer the Israelites and inflict significant damage on them.

Yunus (Jonah) يونس
Islamic tradition shows that Jonah (Arabic:Yunus) was commanded by God (Arabic:Allah) to help the people of Nineveh towards righteousness. However, after Nineveh’s people refused to listen to God, he became disgruntled and started to ignore Him. After an incident where Jonah was spared death, he decided to re-commit himself to striving for God, attempting to lead the people of Nineveh to righteousness. But after returning to evil, illicit ways, the Scythians conquered them.[3]

Zakariya (Zacharias) زكريا
A descendant of Solomon (Arabic:Sulayman), Zacharias (Arabic:Zakariya) was a patron of Mary (Arabic:Maryam), mother of Jesus (Arabic:Isa). According to the Quran, he prayed to God (Arabic:Allah) asking for a son, since his sterile wife al-Yashbi could not provide one. God granted his wishes, temporarily lifting his wife’s sterility and allowing her to give birth to John (Arabic:Yahya).

Yahya (John the Baptist) يحيى
Islam says that, throughout his lifetime, John (Arabic:Yahya) captivated audiences with his powerful sermons that preached Abrahamic monotheism.

Isa (Jesus) عيسى
One of the highest ranked prophets in Islam, Jesus Christ (Arabic:Isa al-Maseeh, which literally means Jesus the Messiah) was sent to guide the Children of Israel. The Qur’an makes it very clear that in Islam, Jesus is not the begotten(physical) son of God (Arabic:Allah), but rather a prophet and messenger of God. He is called Ruhullah (The Spirit of God). He performed many miracles with the permission of God. For example, raising the dead, creating a bird from clay, talking as an infant. Islamic traditions states that he abstained from drinking alcohol. It also states that he received a revelation, the Gospel (Arabic:Injil), though it has been distorted. Muslims believe that Islamic view of Jesus was not crucified, meaning he was not killed on the cross. Whether he was put on the cross or not is an issue of interpretation. God raised Jesus to Himself. Muslims are awaiting the return of Jesus The Messiah, and it will take place after Imam Mahdi and he Jesus will defeat the Dajjal (the Imposter/the Anti-Christ).

Muhammad محمّد
Muhammad is the most revered prophet in Islam and the only one who does not exist in either Judaism nor Christianity. Muhammad is considered the most perfect creation by Allah or God. Born in Makkah in 570 AD, Muhammad spent the first part of his life as a well-travelled merchant. He would often spend his time in the mountains surrounding Makkah in prayer contemplating the situation with the city. At the age of forty, during one of those trips to the mountain, Muhammad began to, despite his functional illiteracy, receive and recite verses from God (Arabic:Allah) which today make up the Qur’an. He quickly spread the message he was receiving, converting a few others in the city, including his wife. He claimed to be the last (seal) of the prophets with a message to all humanity. When oppression become intolerable for his followers, Muhammed first asked his fellow Muslims to migrate to Medina and later himself migrated to Medina away from the oppressors in Makkah. Muhammad served not just as a prophet, but as a military leader who helped defeat the Makkans in 624 during the Battle of Badr. He continued to lead the Muslims as Islam spread across the Arabian Peninsula. He performed the first hajj in 629 and established Islam, with its Five Pillars, as it is still practiced by Muslims today. Others continued Muhammad’s legacy after his death in 632, having been given the position of caliph (or successor) to Muhammad.

Other possible prophets

The following verses open up possibilities for prophets other than those mentioned in the Qur’an:
“And certainly We sent messengers before you: there are some of them that We have mentioned to you and there are others whom We have not mentioned to you…” [40:78]

“For We assuredly sent amongst every People a messenger…”[16:36]

The verses open up debate, and there is no strong consensus as to the other authentic Prophets.

Al-Khidr is not mentioned by name, but is traditionally assumed to be referred to in Qur’an 18:66.

Biblical prophets Danyal (Daniel), Ishaia (Isaiah), Armya (Jeremiah) are not mentioned in Qur’an but often revered as prophets.

Luqman is mentioned in the sura named after him but it is unclear whether he is a prophet or a wali.

Additional numerous historical figures may have been prophets, but this is a source of debate and contention, among them: Zoroaster, Gautama Buddha and Ram. However, Muslims will state that there is no way of knowing for sure since they are not mentioned by name in the Qur’an. An argument often used in support of the prophet hood of such men is that they came with the word of God, but it was later corrupted, this accounting for the differences between Islam, and the respective religions with which each man is associated. The Hadith and Qur’an support such claims that say that a messenger was sent to every people.

Mary, mother of Jesus (A chapter called “Surat Maryam” (Arabic script: سورة مريمِ) in the holly Qur’an was named after her), is not normally regarded as a prophetess, but is regarded as having been sent a message from God via an angel. A few scholars (e.g. Ibn Hazm) have argued that she was a prophetess, but she is not mentioned in the Qur’an as one, and thus it cannot be definitely established if she is or isn’t. The majority position among Islamic scholars is that no woman has received a prophetic mission from God.

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