📜 Unveiling the OLD TESTAMENT: Al-ʿAhdu ʾl-ʿAtīq (العهد العتيق‎) in Islamic Context

Examine the Old Testament (Al-ʿAhdu ʾl-ʿAtīq) as recognized by Islam, including its references in the Qur'an and how it aligns with Judeo-Christian scriptures.

📖 Introduction

The Old Testament, known as Al-ʿAhdu ʾl-ʿAtīq (العهد العتيق‎) in Arabic, holds a significant place in Islamic tradition. Despite the commonality in reference between Jewish, Christian, and Islamic scriptures, the Islamic perspective often emphasizes specific narratives and characters tailored to Islamic theology.

📜 Etymology & References

The Arabic term Al-ʿAhdu ʾl-ʿAtīq translates directly to “The Ancient Covenant,” similarly to the term “Old Testament” used by Christians. Islam acknowledges various books within the Old Testament known as the Taurāt (Torah) revealed to Moses, and the Zabūr (Psalms) attributed to David. Additional references to prophetic events underscore the interconnectedness between these Abrahamic faiths.

🌌 Background & Context

Islamic theology, as seen in the Qur’an, maintains a respectful acknowledgment of the Jewish and Christian scriptures. However, Muhammad’s revelations exhibit unique narratives along with some that diverge significantly from traditional Judeo-Christian tales.

📚 Cultural Differences & Similarities

  • Reverence for Prophets: Islam shares respect for prophets like Abraham (Ibrāhīm), Moses (Mūsā), and Jesus (ʿĪsā), each recognized in the Qur’an.
  • Scriptural Authenticity: Jewish and Christian traditions uphold specific versions and interpretations of their scriptures. Conversely, Muslims argue that the original messages were best preserved through the Qur’an.

📝 Synonyms & Antonyms

  • Synonyms: Ancient Covenant, Scriptures of the Ancients, Books of Foretellers.
  • Antonyms: New Covenant (New Testament in Christian context).
  • Taurāt (توراة): The Torah, often attributed to Moses, encompassing the first five books of the Old Testament.
  • Zabūr (زبور): The Psalms, poetic compositions attributed to King David.
  • Injīl (إنجيل): The Gospel, recounting the life and teachings of Jesus, recognized in the New Testament.

📌 Exciting Facts

  • The Qur’an acknowledges twenty-five prophets, the majority of whom are shared with the Old Testament.
  • Islamic tradition holds that only portions of the original revelations to prophets preceding Muhammad have remained unchanged.
  • The narrative of Abraham’s (Ibrāhīm) near-sacrifice exists in both the Bible and the Qur’an, though the intended son varies by tradition: Isaac in the Bible and Ishmael in Islamic texts.

💬 Quotations from Notable Writers

Emanuel Deutsch writes in “Literary Remains”:

“Judaism forms the kernel of Muḥammadanism, both general and special. It seems as if he (Muḥammad) had breathed from his childhood almost the air of contemporary Judaism, such Judaism as is found by us crystallised in the Talmud, the Targum, and the Midras.”

📝 References & Further Reading

  1. “Islam and Jewish Tradition” - An exploration of the intersections and diverging points between Islamic and Jewish religious traditions.
  2. “The Qur’an and Its Biblical Subtext” by Gabriel Said Reynolds - An academic work examining the Qur’anic narratives and their biblical elements.
  3. “Muhammad and the Bible” - Insights into Muhammad’s engagement with biblical texts and stories.

📚 Suggest Literature and Other Sources

  1. “The Cambridge Companion to the Qur’an” edited by Jane Dammen McAuliffe.
  2. “Islam, Judaism, and the Political Role of Religions in the Middle East” by Mordechai Nisan.
  3. “Interfaith Dialogue” by IIIT, which explores inter-religious dialogues concerning shared scriptures.

🧩 Quizzes

### 🕋 Who among the following is not mentioned in the Qur'an? - [ ] Abraham (Ibrāhīm) - [ ] Moses (Mūsā) - [ ] Daniel (Dānyāl) - [x] Ezra (ʿUzair) > **Explanation:** Ezra (ʿUzair) is not explicitly named in the Qur'an, although other prophets such as Moses, Abraham, and Daniel are mentioned. ### 📜 The Taurāt in Islamic tradition refers to which scriptures? - [x] The Torah - [ ] The Psalms - [ ] The Gospel - [ ] The Book of Mormon > **Explanation:** The Taurāt corresponds to the Torah, primarily covering the first five books ascribed to Moses. ### 🌟 True or False: Islamic tradition holds that Ishmael was the son Abraham nearly sacrificed. - [x] True - [ ] False > **Explanation:** True. Islamic tradition asserts that Ishmael, and not Isaac, was the son whom Abraham was willing to sacrifice, although other traditions back Isaac. ### 🕊️ Who in the Qur'an is equated to Job of the Old Testament? - [x] Aiyūb - [ ] Idrīs - [ ] Lūt - [ ] Yaʿqūb > **Explanation:** Aiyūb is the Qur'anic equivalent to the biblical figure Job, known for his patience and endurance.

📖 Inspirational Thought

Reflecting upon the shared stories across different faiths not only broadens our understanding of sacred texts but also strengthens the bridge of mutual respect and common heritage that binds humanity together.

🏝️ Farewell and may this exploration guide you towards deeper revelations and understandings.

- Imran Al-Hakim, 2024

Sunday, June 16, 2024

Islamic Terms Lexicon

IslamicTermsLexicon.com is your ultimate resource for understanding the vast and intricate world of Islamic doctrines, rites, ceremonies, customs, and technical & theological terms. Our comprehensive dictionary provides thousands of terms in both English and Arabic, each with detailed definitions, authoritative references, and quizzes designed to sharpen your understanding and enhance your learning experience.

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