June 23, 2024
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This short essay aims to highlight the major difference between the Qur'an and the Torah. According to Islamic belief, the Quran was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) over 23 years ago through the angel Gabriel (Jibril) in the Arabic language. The revelation began in 610 CE, when the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) was 40 years old and was meditating in a cave on the outskirts of Mecca.
Difference between the Quran and Torah

 

This short essay aims to highlight the major difference between the Qur’an and the Torah. According to Islamic belief, the Quran was revealed to the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) over 23 years ago through the angel Gabriel (Jibril) in the Arabic language. The revelation began in 610 CE, when the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) was 40 years old and was meditating in a cave on the outskirts of Mecca.

The first revelation that the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) received was the first five verses of Surah Al-Alaq (chapter 96), in which Allah commands the Prophet to read in the name of his Lord who created. Initially, the Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) was unsure of what was happening to him, but after the angel Gabriel explained that he was the messenger of Allah and that he was to convey the message of Islam to the people, the Prophet began to receive further revelations.

The Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) would often receive the revelations while in a state of spiritual concentration or while performing various acts of worship. He would then memorize and recite the verses to his companions, who would also memorize and write down the verses on whatever material they had available.

The Quranic revelations were compiled and organized in the form of a book during the caliphate of Abu Bakr, the first Muslim caliph, and then standardized during the caliphate of Uthman, the third Muslim caliph. The Quran has been preserved in its original Arabic text and has been transmitted through an unbroken chain of narrators, making it the most widely memorized and recited book in human history.

According to the Quran, Allah (God) granted the Torah to Prophet Moses (Musa) as a divine revelation. The story of Moses receiving the Torah is mentioned in multiple chapters of the Quran, including Surah Al-Baqarah, Surah Al-Isra, and Surah Al-A’raf.

The Quranic account of the revelation of the Torah to Moses emphasizes that it was a direct communication from God to His prophet. Allah says in Surah Al-A’raf, verse 145: “And We wrote for him on the tablets [something] of all things – instruction and explanation for all things, [saying], ‘Take them with determination and order your people to take the best of it.'”

In the Quran, it is also mentioned that Moses had a unique relationship with Allah and was chosen by Him to receive the divine revelation of the Torah. Allah says in Surah Al-An’am, verse 84: “And We gave to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob – all [of them] We guided. And We guided Noah before; and among his descendants, David and Solomon and Job and Joseph and Moses and Aaron. Thus do We reward the doers of good.”

The Quran and the Torah are both considered to be divine revelations from Allah (God) in Islamic belief and in Jewish belief respectively. However, there are some key differences in the way they were revealed and transmitted.

  1. Language: The Quran was revealed in Arabic, whereas the Torah was revealed in Hebrew.

  2. Time of revelation: The Torah was revealed to Moses (Musa) in approximately the 13th century BCE, whereas the Quran was revealed to Prophet Muhammad in the 7th century CE.

  3. Duration of a revelation: The Torah was revealed to Moses in one instance on Mount Sinai, whereas the Quran was revealed to Prophet Muhammad (Peace be upon him) over a period of 23 years.

  4. Transmission: The Torah was transmitted orally from generation to generation until it was eventually written down, whereas the Quran was immediately written down during the time of its revelation and memorized by the Prophet Muhammad and his companions. Additionally, the Quran has been preserved in its original Arabic text and has been transmitted through an unbroken chain of narrators.

  5. Scope: The Torah contains the history, laws, and teachings of the Israelites, whereas the Quran contains guidance and teachings for all of humanity.

Overall, while both the Quran and the Torah are considered to be divine revelations, the differences in their language, time, and duration of revelation, transmission, and scope reflect their unique historical and cultural contexts.

The reason for the difference in the revelation of the Torah and the Quran is not explicitly stated in Islamic or Jewish scriptures. However, one possible explanation is that the revelation of the Torah in one instance was intended to establish a clear and definitive law for the Israelites, who were already a well-established community at the time of its revelation. On the other hand, the revelation of the Quran over a period of 23 years allowed for a gradual implementation of its teachings, which were intended to guide and shape the nascent Muslim community and address specific challenges as they arose.

Regarding the training of the Bani Israil (Children of Israel) before receiving the Divine Law, this is a common interpretation among Islamic scholars. It is believed that Allah chose the Bani Israel as a chosen people and revealed to them various prophets and scriptures as part of their training and preparation for the final revelation of the Torah. This gradual process of revelation and training is seen as a way of preparing the Bani Israel for the heavy responsibilities that came with receiving the Divine Law.

Similarly, it is believed that the Muslim Ummah was first taught the basic principles of faith and morality, such as the oneness of Allah and the importance of prayer and charity before the detailed laws and regulations of Islam were revealed. This approach allowed the Muslim community to first establish a strong foundation of faith and values before being entrusted with the heavier responsibilities of the Divine Law.

 

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