The Holy Quran as the Miracle of the Holy Prophet

This is a short article to introduce the subject to fellow Christians. The Holy Quran says about them: And thou shalt assuredly find those who say, ‘We are Christians,’ to be the nearest of them in love to the believers. That is because amongst them are savants and monks and because they are not proud.  (Al Quran 5:83) This article was originally published in Spring 2010 volume of Muslim Sunrise:

Illiterate himself, scarcely able to read or write, he was yet the author of a book which is a poem, a code of laws, a Book of Common Prayer, and a Bible in one, and is reverenced to this day by a sixth of the whole human race as a miracle of purity of style, of wisdom, and of truth. It was the one miracle claimed by Mohammed—his ‘standing miracle’ he called it; and a miracle indeed it is.[1] Reginald Bosworth Smith

In the 21st century residents of a European country, namely the Swiss voters have backed a ban on building any more mosques with minarets in their country.  The Holy Quran, revealed in the desert of Arabia in the seventh century stated that the purpose of defensive warfare is to preserve the sanctity of cloisters, churches, synagogues and mosques.  The Quran named the place of worship of the Muslims as the last on this sacred list.[2]  Is the Quran a miracle or not? Religious tolerance is not the only teaching wherein the Holy Quran excels all other secular books or religious scriptures.  Since 1982 half a million people have died in USA alone in alcohol related traffic accidents, to name only one problem from alcohol.[3]  The Holy Quran emphatically forbade alcohol, saving the believers from this mother of many evils.  Is it a miracle or not? Sir Godfrey Higgins wrote, “By the law of Mohamed all games of chance were expressly prohibited: the beneficial tendency of this law surely no one will deny. He is refused all merit for his morality, because it is said that he only copied it from the Bible. I have not observed the prohibition of this vice either in the decalogue or the gospels.”[4] Fifteen million people now display some sign of gambling addiction in USA, and inflict themselves and the society with pain.  The Holy Quran nipped the evil in the bud.  Is it a miracle or not?   “Mohamedism is reproached with copying its morality from the gospel;”  Sir Godfrey Higgins wrote in the defense of the Prophet, “a philosopher, perhaps, may suspect that when the prophet was availing himself of the excellent moral precepts of Christianism, he had sense, not only to take the good, but to leave the evil; to adopt the morality, but to avoid the hired priesthood which, in his day, had filled the world with bloodshed and misery, and was rapidly reducing it to a state of the most debasing ignorance.”[5] The Holy Quran forbade monasticism in clear terms.[6]  Fourteen hundred years later the Catholic Church is following suit in their negotiation with the Anglican Church.[7][8]  Every time we contrast the Holy Quran with the Bible, the Quran comes out ahead.  Is it a miracle or not?  

The Quran was revealed in a seventh century tribal society yet it has 800 verses stressing the study of nature.  Is it a miracle or not? It anticipates both the Big Bang and the fact that all living things require and contain water, in the same verse, “Do not the disbelievers see that the heavens and the earth were a closed-up mass, then We opened them out? And We made from water every living thing. Will they not then believe?”[9] Is it a miracle or not? Read on and in the words of Francis Bacon, Read not to contradict … but to weigh and consider.”  
Pope John Paul kissing a copy of the Holy Quran 
The Quran was revealed in a society where very few people could read or write, yet its text has been preserved for more than 14 centuries.  Such a claim cannot be made for the Bible.  These facts are examined in a companion article, Compilation of the Holy Qur’an into a text.  Is it a miracle or not? 

The Quran issued a historic challenge not only to the contemporaries of the Prophet but also to men in all ages; “Were all of mankind to come together and wish to produce the like of the Qur’an, they would never succeed, however much they aided each other.”[10]  The challenge remains unmet 14 centuries after its issuance.  People can come out with negativity and start criticizing the Holy Quran on one or the other ground.  But that is their wishful thinking and paranoia and not any real scholarship.  The fact and the ground reality remains that this challenge of the Holy Quran has been out there and no writer has tried to take up the challenge, in a manner, that will stand the test of time.  A book attributed to an untaught person and yet no one dares take up the challenge! Professor Laura Vaglieri, who served as professor of Arabic and Islamic Culture at the Naples Eastern University, wrote: “Although the opponents of Islam were invited by Muhammad to compose a book similar to his own, or, at least, a chapter (‘And if you are in doubt as to what We have sent down to Our servant, then produce a chapter like it;’), and although those who had the ability to express themselves with great eloquence were plentiful among the Arabs, yet nobody was able to produce anything which could stand comparison with the Quran; they fought the Prophet with arms but failed to match the excellence of the Quran.” [11] Is it a miracle or not? Let me here quote from the experience of German philosopher Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. He said, “As often as we approach the Quran, it always proves repulsive anew; gradually, however, it attracts, it astonishes, and, in the end forces admiration.”[12][13] Professor Laura Vaccia Vaglieri explains: “The miracle of Islam par excellence is the Quran, through which a constant and unbroken tradition transmits to us news of an absolute certainty. This is a book which cannot be imitated. Each of its expressions is a comprehensive one, and yet it is of proper size, neither too long nor too short. Its style is original. There is no model for this style in Arab literature of the times, preceding it. The effect which it produces on the human soul is obtained without any adventitious aid through its own inherent excellences. The verses are equally eloquent all through the text, even when they deal with topics, such as commandments and prohibitions, which must necessarily affect its tone. Stories of Prophets, descriptions of the beginning and the end of the world, enumerations and expositions of the divine attributes are repeated but repeated in a way which is so impressive that they do not weaken the effect. The text proceeds from one topic to another without losing its power. Depth and sweetness, qualities which generally do not go together, are found together here, where each rhetoric figure finds a perfect application. How could this marvelous book be the work of Muhammad, an illiterate Arab who in all his life composed only two or three verses, none of which reveals the least poetic quality?” [14] Is it a miracle or not?  Bernard Shaw who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1925, said, “I have always held the religion of Muhammad in highest esteem because of its wonderful vitality. It is the only religion which appears to me to possess that assimilating capability to the changing phases of existence which can make it appeal to every age. I have prophesied about the faith of Muhammad, that it would be acceptable to the Europe of tomorrow as it is beginning to be acceptable to the Europe of today.”[15] Is it a miracle or not?  Laura Vaccia Vaglieri, professor at the University of Naples, has further to say: “For the book, besides its perfection in form and method, proved itself beyond irritation even in its substance. In it, among other things, we read a forecast of future events, and a description of events which had taken place centuries before but were generally ignored. There are frequent references to the laws of nature, to various sciences, both religious and secular. We find there vast stores of knowledge which are beyond the capacity of the most intelligent of men, the greatest of philosophers and the ablest of politicians. For all these reasons the Quran could not be the work of an uneducated man, who had spent all his life in the midst of an unrefined society far away from men of learning and religion, a man who always insisted that he was but a man just like any others, and, as such, unable to perform miracles unless he had the help of Almighty God. The Quran could have its source only in Him Whose knowledge comprehends everything in heaven and earth.”[16] Is it a miracle or not?  I invite the Christian readers in the words of Reginald Bosworth Smith, “To discriminate between the accidental and the essential, the transitory and the eternal; above all, constantly to turn the mirror in upon oneself, and to try to make sure that one is complying with that great principle of Christianity of judging and of treating others as we should wish ourselves to be judged and treated;” that is the recipe to judge affairs in a fair and unbiased manner.[17]  The Holy Quran says, regarding limitless knowledge and insights contained in the scripture, “Say, ‘If every ocean becomes ink for the words of my Lord, surely, the ocean would be exhausted before the words of my Lord were exhausted, even though We brought the like thereof as further help.’”[18] This is what Goethe was experiencing after repeatedly reading the Holy Quran. The messiah of this age, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani, the founder of Ahmadiyya Muslim Community explains:

The Holy Qur’an is not matchless merely on account of the beauty of its composition, but is matchless on account of all its excellences which it claims to comprise and that is the truth, for whatever proceeds from God Almighty is not unique only on account of one quality but on account of every one of its qualities. Those who do not accept the Holy Qur’an as comprehensive of unlimited eternal truths and insights, do not value the Qur’an as it should be valued. A necessary sign for the recognition of the holy and true Word of God is that it should be unique in all its qualities, for we observe that whatever proceeds from God Almighty is unique and matchless even if it is only a grain of barley, and human powers cannot match it. Being matchless means being unlimited, that is to say, a thing can be matchless only when its wonders and qualities are unlimited and have no end.  As we have just stated, this characteristic is found in everything created by God Almighty. For instance, if the wonders of a leaf of a tree are investigated for a thousand years, that period would come to an end, but the wonders of the leaf will not come to an end. That which has come into being through unlimited power, must comprise unlimited wonders and qualities.[19]

Is it a miracle or not?  Space does not allow me to continue.  I invite the reader to review a 5 volume commentary in English on the Holy Quran on the web.[20] 
For further details go to:

[1] Reginald Bosworth Smith, Mohammed and Mohammedanism, 1889 edition.  Page 290.
[2] Al Quran 22:42.
[4] Godfrey Higgins Esq, An apology for the life and character of the prophet Mohamed or the illustrious.  Year of publication 1829.  Pages 35.  Printed by G. Smallfield, Hackney.  The book is available on the
[5] Sir Godfrey Higgins Esq, An apology for the life and character of the prophet Mohamed or the illustrious.  Year of publication 1829.  Pages 30.  Printed by G. Smallfield, Hackney.
[6] Al Quran 58:23.
[9] Al Quran 21:31.
[10] Al Quran 17:88.
[11] Laura Veccia Vaglieri.   An Interpretation of Islam.  First published in 1957.  Goodward books, 2004.  Page 42-44.
[12] RVC Bodley. The Messenger. Double Day and Company Inc, 1946. Page 237.
[14] Laura Veccia Vaglieri.   An Interpretation of Islam.  First published in 1957.  Goodward books, 2004.  Page 42-44.
[15] Muhammad and teachings of Quran By John Davenport, Mohammad Amin Published by Sh. Muhammad Ashraf, 1964.  Original from the University of California, Digitized by on Dec 5, 2008, 127 pages.
[16] Laura Veccia Vaglieri.   An Interpretation of Islam.  First published in 1957.  Goodward books, 2004.  Page 42-44.
[17] Reginald Bosworth Smith, in the preface of his, Mohammed and Mohammedanism.  1889 edition.
[18] Al Quran18:10.
[19] Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad. Karamat-us-Sadiqin, Ruhani Khaza’in, Vol. 7, pp. 60-62.

15 replies

  1. The Holy Quran and the Bible
    Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad the Founder of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community wrote:

    The claim of the Christian missionaries that the Qur’an does not set forth anything new on the Unity of God and on Divine commandments which is not contained in the Torah, is altogether false. An ignorant person reading the Torah might fall into the error that it sets forth the Unity of God, and directions with regard to worship, and the rights of mankind, and that there is nothing new which has been set out in the Qur’an, but only a person who has not pondered the Word of God would fall into this error.

    There is a great part of matters Divine that finds no mention in the Torah; for instance, it does not mention the finer stages of the Unity of God. The Qur’an discloses that the Unity of God does not mean merely that we should not worship idols, or human beings, or animals, or the elements, or heavenly bodies or satans, but that the Unity of God has three stages.

    The first stage of the Unity of God is for the common people who desire to be delivered from the wrath of God Almighty.

    The second stage is for those who desire to be closer to God than the common people.

    The third stage is for those special ones who desire to achieve closeness to perfection.

    The first stage is that no one should be worshiped except God, and that one should refrain from the worship of everything that is limited and created, whether it is on the earth or in heaven. The second stage of the Unity of God is that in one’s own affairs and in the affairs of others, God Almighty should be regarded as the true force and that means should not be so emphasized as to become associates of God. For instance, to say that had it not been for X one would have suffered a certain loss, or that if it had not been for Y, one would have been ruined, would amount to shirk, if by such pronouncements it is meant that X and Y truly possess some power. The third stage of the Unity of God is to exclude the desires of one’s ego from one’s love of God Almighty and to devote oneself entirely to His Greatness. Such Unity of God is not to be found in the Torah. Also there is no mention of salvation or hell in the Torah, except some slight indications here and there. In the same way, there is no detailed mention in the Torah of the perfect attributes of God Almighty. Had the Torah contained any Surah like the one in the Holy Qur’an: ‘Say, ‘He is Allah, the One; Allah, the Independent and Besought of all. He begets not, nor is He begotten; And there is none like unto Him.’ (112:2-5) then perhaps the Christians might have refrained from the worship of a creature. Also the Torah has not set forth the degrees of rights but the Qur’an has set forth this teaching also in perfection. For instance, it says: ‘Verily, Allah requires you to abide by justice, and to treat with grace, and give like the giving of kin to kin; (16:91) Allah enjoins equity, benevolence and graciousness between kindred. This means that our sympathy with mankind should be prompted by natural eagerness and not by any motive of seeking acknowledgement, as for instance, a mother has sympathy for her child. The Torah also fails to establish the existence of God and His Unity and His perfect attributes on the basis of reason, but the Holy Qur’an has established all these doctrines and the need of revelation and Prophethood with arguments based on reason, and by stating everything in a philosophic way, has made it easy for seekers after truth to appreciate it. These arguments are put forth in such an excellent manner in the Holy Qur’an that it is not within anyone’s power, for instance, to put forth any argument on the existence of God which is not contained in the Qur’an. A strong argument in support of the need of the Holy Qur’an is that all the previous Books beginning with the Torah and ending with the Gospel are addressed to a particular people, namely, the children of Israel and state in clear words that the directions contained in them are not for the general benefit, and are limited to the children of Israel. But the Holy Qur’an aims at the reform of the whole world and is not addressed to any particular people but states plainly that it has been revealed for the benefit of the whole of mankind and that the reform of everyone is its purpose. [‘Kitab ul Bariyyah’, Essence of Islam, Vol. I, pp.468 – 471]

    Also see the confession of Rev. Elwood Morris Wherry in a comment below.

  2. The Beauty and Glory of the Holy Qur’an
    By Azhar Haneef

    I am reminded of the precarious condition of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community immediately after the demise of Hadhrat Ahmad, the Promised Messiah (as), the Founder of the Community. Indeed, those were critical days when hearts and minds were sorely tested in ways we can hardly imagine as the architect, engineer and captain of the Holy Ark known as the Ahmadiyya Jama’at had passed on and left a sudden void of leadership. This situation led Mirza Hairat, the editor of the Curzon Gazette, to make the bold prediction quoted above. With obvious satisfaction and anticipation, he felt that Jama’at Ahmadiyya was destined to fall apart and doomed to fail because now at the helm of the ship was an elderly man, Hadhrat Maulawi Haakim Nur-ud-Din(ra), whose sole passion, interest and ability was to teach the Holy Qur’an.

    What a gross error of judgment of the character and ability of Hadhrat Maulawi Nur-ud-Din (ra) and what a poor assessment of the value of God’s Word, the Holy Qur’an. The fact is, as revealed to the Promised Messiah(as)“all good is in the Qur’an”, everything we need – every bounty and every blessing, every source of help, strength and guidance and every means of progress and success – is in the Holy Qur’an. This is exactly what the Holy Prophet Muhammad (saw) believed and relied upon from the beginning of his prophethood. He would inform people:

    …‘I am only a man like yourselves, but I have received the revelation… (Ch.18:V.111)

    In other words, the one great distinction that separated him from everyone else was being the direct recipient of the Holy Qur’an; he practised, preached and as his beloved consort, Hadhrat ‘A`ishah(ra) would say, “his character was the Qur’an”, he embodied it.

    The very first word of the Qur’anic revelation was a powerful and profound command, “Iqra’…”, meaning, read, recite, compile and convey. The word “Qur’an” is derived from the same Arabic root. Thus the first word and command of the Holy Qur’an indicated the purpose of its revelation, and the plan by which the religion of Islam would spread in the world. The faith would spread in a twofold manner: one, by men and women reciting and reading the Holy Qur’an and relaying its message to others, and two, by writing implements such as the pen and similar inventions to compile the scripture into a book and distribute and convey it far and wide. Allah says:

    Convey! And thy Lord is Most Generous, Who taught man by the pen, taught man what he knew not. (Ch.96:Vs.4–6)

  3. History channel documentary about Islam
    It starts off with introduction to the Quran:

    A lot of what is said is positive but there may be a subtle intent to associate the Quran with violence, which will be wrong even sinister, as the Holy Quran only condones defensive warfare. To supplement the information in the documentary and make it accurate read a volume of the Muslim Sunrise on the theme of the Real Secrets of the Holy Qur’an:

  4. To the Quran-Burning Church: Thou Shalt Not Bear False Witness
    By John Thatamanil

    Islamophobia in America is gradually reaching epidemic proportions. The toll that such toxicity will exact on our core constitutional values is slowly becoming apparent. But few seem to realize that surrender to suspicion and fear also brings with it a heavy moral and spiritual price. When Christians (and sadly much of the hatred is being mobilized by churches) bear false witness against our neighbors and fail to live up to Jesus’ command to love our neighbors as we love ourselves, we abandon the constitutive practices of Christian life.

    Christians violate basic religious commitments and obligations by fanning the flames of hatred and sowing the seeds of violence. The most dramatic example of Christians betraying their own values is the call by the Dove World Outreach Center for a Quran-burning day to mark the ninth anniversary of September 11. Some outreach!

  5. The intolerance of Quran burning by a Florida Church
    By Rabbi Arthur Waskow

    From a small right-wing church in Florida, there has gone out a call to burn copies of the Quran on September 11. Instead of being ignored as clearly cuckoo, this call won national media coverage.

    As the German Jewish poet Heinrich Heine wrote almost two centuries ago, “Those who begin by burning books will end by burning people.” The theater piece for which he wrote those words, called “Almansor,” was addressing the Inquisition’s burning of the Quran. In 1933, university students in Heine’s own beloved homeland burned his books, along with many others. They burned people soon after.

    Many American religious communities and organizations, as well as secular groups like Common Cause, have condemned this call for burning. The road to burning people is by no means so open here, now, as it was in Germany in 1933.

  6. Rev. Elwood Morris Wherry acknowledging the beauty of Unity of God in Islam
    Rev. Elwood Morris Wherry (1843- 1927) was an American Presbyterian missionary to India who wrote a number of books and was a famous Christian apologist and Orientalist in his time. He wrote:

    A few passages, like the oases in the deserts of Arabia, stand out as truly beautiful both in their setting and in their thought. Take the first chapter, the Fatihat:

    ‘In the name of God, the compassionate, the merciful. Praise be to God, Lord of all the worlds! The compassionate, the merciful! King on the Day of Judgment! Thee do we worship, and to thee do we cry for help! Guide then us in the right way! The path of those to whom thou art gracious! Not of those with whom thou art angered, nor of those who go astray.’

    The celebrated throne verse in Chap. II., 255, is as follows: ‘God! there is no God but he; the living, the self-subsisting: neither slumber nor sleep seizeth him; to him belongeth whatsoever is in heaven and on earth. Who is he that can intercede with him, but through his good pleasure? He knoweth that which is past, and that which is to come unto them, and they shall not comprehend anything of his knowledge, but so far as he pleaseth. His throne is extended over heaven and earth, and the preservation of both is no burden unto him. He is high, the Mighty.’

    The question is often asked why a book of such singular composition should hold such sway over the millions of the Moslem world. In reply two reasons may be given: first, the beautiful rhythm, and often sweet cadences of the original language, which like some enchanting song hold multitudes with rapt attention who understand scarcely a word they hear; secondly, there is a vast amount of truth contained in the book, especially the truth of the divine unity and of man’s dependence upon God, as seen in the throne verse just now quoted.

    Islam and Christianity in India and the Far East By Elwood Morris Wherry. Fleming H Revell Company, 1907. Page 25-26.

  7. The Quranic challenge
    The Quranic challenge is not about knowing Arabic language, it could be met in another language. The last part of my article does describes some details of the challenge.

    The main feature has to be a test of time. You produce an article or a book about philosophy and teachings for human life, that not only has literary excellence but is accepted and glorified for decades and centuries by a significant portion of human society.

    A short term strategy to give Salman Rushdie Knighthood or President Obama a Nobel Prize for peace or literature will not suffice! Rushdie has supposedly produced great literature but I do not know of anyone in Upstate New York who relishes his literature like he would dramas of Shakespeare. As I said before, literary beauty is only a part of it, the more important test is its exceptional utilitarian and pragmatic value to human societies, that is not limited to a short period of history!

  8. Refuting the critics of the Holy Quran
    This is a comment for the anonymous critic in Google knol, where this article was published in 2010 or any Christian critics of the Holy Quran.

    One of the volumes of the Muslim Sunrise brought forth several articles to refute the false propaganda of the critics of the Holy Quran:

    These critics take up such propaganda to prop up the Bible against the Holy Quran. It is unfortunate that these critics do not learn from the modern day biblical scholars like Bart Ehrman, what the Bible truly is. If the fair minded Christians, read the Holy Quran with even a portion of devotion and indulgence that they read the Bible, they would begin to see the miracle of the Holy Quran. Many read the Quran only to refute it, forgeting the advice, read on and in the words of Sir Francis Bacon, “Read not to contradict … but to weigh and consider.”

    I have a collection of more than 60 knols about Christianity. Let me add a few links here:

  9. JAMA magazine covers the Holy Quran on the front page
    Thomas B. Cole, MD, MPH writes:

    “Classical Arabic is the language of the Qur’an, the sacred text of Islam. Although people of many languages and cultures follow the Islamic faith, the Qur’an is always written in Arabic, the language in which the Qur’an was originally revealed to the Prophet Muhammad. With the spread of Islam that began in the 7th century CE, Arabic became the language of religion, government, commerce, literature, and science from the Arabian peninsula to the southern and eastern shores of the Mediterranean and through Iraq and Iran to Central Asia. …”

    The stress of the article is on caligraphy and culture but it also notes that the Holy Quran was written in the time of the first Caliph Abu Bakr after the demise of the Prophet Muhammad, may peace be on him.

    It is in the April 7, 2010 volume of JAMA:

  10. Refuting the critics of the Holy Quran
    This is a comment for the anonymous critic below or any Christian critics of the Holy Quran.

    One of the volumes of the Muslim Sunrise brought forth several articles to refute the false propaganda of the critics of the Holy Quran:

    These critics take up such propaganda to prop up the Bible against the Holy Quran. It is unfortunate that these critics do not learn from the modern day biblical scholars like Bart Ehrman, what the Bible truly is. If the fair minded Christians, read the Holy Quran with even a portion of devotion and indulgence that they read the Bible, they would begin to see the miracle of the Holy Quran. Many read the Quran only to refute it, forgetting the advice of Sir Francis Bacon, “Read not to contradict … but to weigh and consider.”

    We have a collection of more than 100 articles about different aspects of Christianity, here on the Muslim Times. Let me add a few links here:

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