Quran, an Everlasting Miracle
The Holy Quran is the most important miracle of the Prophet of Islam and the best proof of his prophethood. This great miracle is having superiority on all the other miracles from the following aspects:
1. It is permanent and everlasting and it has been given into the charge of man forever and they can witness the miracle of Quran throughout history. As opposed to other miracles, which endure only for a limited period of time.
2. It is also not limited from the aspect of space; it is under the control of one and all in every period of time, so that he may realize that it is a miracle, as opposed to other miracles that can be verified in a particular place and only some people are able to witness them.
3. The Quran, in addition to the fact that it is a proof of prophethood, is also a program of life and a guide to the right path, as opposed to other miracles, which do not have such an excellence.
The Holy Quran is the word of God and a miracle in such a way that others are incapable of presenting such a discourse. Quran introduces itself to be a miracle and by way of challenge says:
قُل لَّئِنِ اجْتَمَعَتِ الْإِنسُ وَالْجِنُّ عَلَى أَن يَأْتُواْ بِمِثْلِ هَذَا الْقُرْءَانِ لَا يَأْتُونَ بِمِثْلِهِ وَلَوْ كَانَ بَعْضُهُمْ لِبَعْضٍ ظَهِيراً
“Say: If men and jinn should combine together to bring the like of this Quran, they could not bring the like of it, though some of them were aiders of others.” (17:88)
أَمْ يَقُولُونَ افْتَرَيهُ قُلْ فَأْتُواْ بِعَشْرِ سُوَرٍ مِّثْلِهِ مُفْتَرَيَتٍ وَادْعُواْ مَنِ اسْتَطَعْتُم مِّن دُونِ اللَّهِ إِن كُنْتُمْ صَدِقينَ / فَإِلَّمْ يَسْتَجِيبُواْ لَكُمْ فَاعْلَمُو اْ أَنَّمَآ أُنزِلَ بِعِلْمِ اللَّهِ وَأَن لَّا إِلَهَ إِلَّا هُوَ فَهَلْ أَنتُم مُّسْلِمُونَ
“Or, do they say: He has forged it. Say: Then bring ten forged chapters like it and call upon whom you can besides Allah, if you are truthful. But if they do not answer you, then know that it is revealed by Allah’s knowledge and that there is no god but He; will you then submit?” (11:13-14)
وَإِنْ كُنْتُمْ فِى رَيْبٍ مِّمَّا نَزَّلْنَا عَلَى عَبْدِنَا فَأْتُواْ بِسُورَةٍ مِّنْ مِّثْلِهِ وَادْعُواْ شُهَدَآءَكُمْ مِّن دُونِ اللَّهِ إِنْ كُنْتُمْ صَدِقِينَ / فَإِن لَّمْ تَفْعَلُواْ وَلَن تَفْعَلُواْ فَاتَّقُواْ النَّارَ الَّتِى وَقُودُهَا النَّاسُ وَ الْحِجَارَةُ أُعِدَّتْ لِلْكَفِرينَ
“And if you are in doubt as to that which We have revealed to Our servant, then produce a chapter like it and call on your witnesses besides Allah if you are truthful. But if you do (it) not and never shall you do (it), then be on your guard against the fire of which men and stones are the fuel; it is prepared for the unbelievers.” (2:23-24)
In the above verses, Quran has been introduced as the miracle and proof of the veracity of the claim of Prophet Muhammad (S) and it has openly demanded from the people that if they have any doubt in the miracle of the Quran or the messengership of The Holy Prophet Muhammad (S), they should bring a like of it or ten chapters or at least one chapter.
If those who are inimical to Islam had the capacity to perform this feat, they would have definitely taken up the challenge or at least brought one chapter like that of Quran and presented it to the Holy Prophet (S) and Muslims in order to render the prophethood of His Eminence doubtful. This was the best method of confronting and defeating Islam.
Therefore, if they had been able to perform this feat, they would have prevented the spread of the influence of Islam and succeeded in dispersing the new converts from the company of The Holy Prophet Muhammad (S) and this also did not carry the bloodshed and difficulties of fighting battles.
But it is not mentioned anywhere in history that they took up this challenge of Quran and succeeded in it.
In any case, the challenge of the Quran is not restricted to the people contemporary to the period of the Messenger of Allah (S), it is general and addressed to all the people of every age and place; it has asked all the intellectuals and litterateurs that if they have doubt in the messengership of The Holy Prophet Muhammad (S) they should bring a like of this Quran or a chapter like it. But as the Quran predicted, they have till date not been able to perform this feat. Enemies of Islam have also written books in refutation of Quran and tried to insult it, but so far no one has succeeded in writing a book like it.
In the words of Almighty Allah, there is a beautiful fluency and attraction in it, which is not present in other books. It is from this aspect that it has severely influenced the pure and enlightened consciences. A large number of people in the early period of Islam were attracted by hearing the verses of Quran and they accepted Islam because of this. Numerous examples of such persons are mentioned in the history of Islam. Such was the extent of the attraction of Quran that it even confounded and attracted the enemies of Islam and even they had to confess that it is extraordinary. Below we present some instances of this:
Abul Fida writes: Walid Ibn Mughira came to the Messenger of Allah (S) and the Prophet recited the Quran before him in such a way that he became inclined to Islam. This information reached Abu Jahl and he came to him and said: Uncle, your relatives intend to collect money for you. What for, he asked. He replied: So that they may hand it over to you, because you had gone to Muhammad to get something. Walid said: Quraish know that I am the richest of all of them.
Abu Jahl said: So issue a statement that may reach your relatives and they may come to know that you are a denier of Muhammad. Walid said: What shall I say? By God, none of you is more learned than me about poetry and Arab human and Jinn literature. By God, the Quran of Muhammad does not resemble any of these. By God, the discourse of Muhammad has sweetness, beauty and attraction; branches of the discourse of Muhammad have fructified and his roots are being watered. His discourse is having precedence over other discourses and no discourse is superior to his.
Abu Jahl said to Walid: Your kin will not be pleased with you unless you make a statement with regard to this matter. He said: Give me some time to consider it. After thinking about it for some time, he said: The discourse of Muhammad is magical as it has the ability to bewitch others.1
Jabir Ibn Abdullah says: One day Quraish gathered and said: We should procure a man, who is most learned of all in magic, soothsaying and poetry and send to this man who has created dissension among us and who talks ill of our religion, so that he may speak to him. All said: We do not know of anyone better than Utbah Ibn Rabia. Therefore this assignment was given to Utbah.
Utbah came to the Messenger of Allah (S) and asked: Who is better, you or your father? The Messenger of Allah (S) did not give any reply. He asked again: Who is better, you or Abdul Muttalib? Again the Messenger of Allah (S) did not accord any reply. Utbah said: If you think they were better than you, they worshipped the same idols that you talk ill of; and if you consider yourself to be better than them, say something that we might hear. By Allah, I have not seen any lamb more inauspicious than you, you have created disunity among us and criticized our religion and degraded us among the Arabs in such a way that they say: A magician has appeared among Quraish and we fear him that he would cause war among us and destroy all of us.
O man, if you want wealth, we can collect so much wealth for you that you would become the richest of Quraish and if you are need of a spouse, we can get you married to any lady you want.
At this moment the Holy Prophet (S) asked Utbah: Have you said all you wanted to say? Yes. He said: Then listen:
بسم الله الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيمِ
تَنزِيلٌ مِّنَ الرَّحْمَنِ الرَّحِيمِ / كِتَابٌ فُصِّلَتْ آيَاتُهُ قُرْآناً عَرَبِيّاً لِّقَوْمٍ يَعْلَمُونَ
“In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful. 41.1. Ha Mim! A revelation from the Beneficent, the Merciful God: A Book of which the verses are made plain, an Arabic Quran for a people who know.” (41:2-3)
…till he came to the verse:
فَإِنْ أَعْرَضُواْ فَقُلْ أَنذَرْتُكُمْ صَاعِقَةً مِّثْلَ صَاعِقَةِ عَادٍ وَثَمُودَ
“But if they turn aside, then say: I have warned you of a scourge like the scourge of Ad and Thamood.” (41:13)
Utbah said: Enough, do you have anything else? No, he replied.
After this Utbah returned to Quraish and they asked him: What did you do? He replied: I spoke to Muhammad. They asked: What did he say in reply? Utbah said: By the one who established the Kaaba, I did not understand anything from the discourse of Muhammad, except that he threatened you with lightning as in the case of Aad and Thamud. They asked: An Arab spoke to you and you did not understand him? He replied: Yes, I did not understand anything, except the mention of lightning.2
According to another narration, Utbah said: I have heard such a discourse from this man that I have not heard anything like it from anyone else.3
According to yet another version, Utbah said: By Allah, I have not heard such a discourse from anyone else so far, neither in poetry nor soothsaying; O people of Quraish, leave this man to his own devices, his discourse is having a great future. If Arabs accept it, it will be sufficient for you and if he is able to conquer the Arabs, his kingdom and honor would be your kingdom and honor and you would benefit from him most of all. Quraish said in reply: Muhammad has bewitched you through his tongue.4
Previously it was mentioned that Quran is a miracle and it is different from human discourse. Friends and enemies have also confessed to this. At this point, it is necessary to explain the causes of its miraculousness. Scholar, theologians, litterateurs and commentators of Quran have mentioned some aspects in this regard and we shall mention some of them here:
It is learnt from a close study of Quran that this great book is having a fresh lightness and it is completely different from the style and diction of other writings. Verses of Quran are not poetic couplets, because it is not composed on poetic meters and also does not have rhymes. Moreover, poetry is mostly imaginative and based on hyperbole, whereas the verses of Quran are not so.
Although Quran is not a book of poetry, each of its verses are like coherent couplets along with a special flow and style arranged in a systematic way and between the end of every chapter there is a particular symmetry and similarity which imparts appeal and beauty to it. The verses do not have the meter of couplets, but they have remarkable compatibility and appeal.
Quran is arranged as a soft prose, but it is different from other prose in two ways:
A. It is at an elevated level from the aspect of eloquence and clarity, selection of words and sentences. It has mentioned the most complex points in an extremely easy and suitable words, which though simple and sweet are also meaningful, whereas such a thing is not found in other discourses. So much so that even the sermons, traditions and supplications of the Holy Prophet (S) do not have such appeal. Although Amirul Momineen (a.s.), was considered to be the most eloquent of the Arabs and he became familiar with Quran during his childhood; he knew it by heart and had written it with his hands, and his Nahjul Balagha is considered as the most eloquent of the books; in spite of that it does not have the same appeal and beauty of the Holy Quran. Verses of Quran that occasionally appear within the sermons of Nahjul Balagha or traditions shine like stars in the sky.
B. Matters of the Holy Quran have a special style and arrangement, which is a remarkable difference with other books. In this heavenly book, there are different subjects like knowing God, resurrection, Judgment Day, accounting, Paradise and Hell, prophethood and stories, effects of good and bad character, creation of the earth, sky, man, animals, vegetation, sea, cloud, winds, rain and rules and regulations, lawful and unlawful actions, worship acts, transactions, marriage and divorce, penalties, retaliations and blood monies, advices and moral lessons and many such topics.
Such topics and their like are spread throughout the Quran under various topics. But it is not thus in other books, since every book deals only with one particular topic and different topics related to the main subject are discussed. Sometimes, some other topics are also discussed, but some topics are also discussed separately. Such a book is in fact a number of books each of which follows a single aim.
But Quran has not discussed only one subject; on the contrary, it has not even discussed all the problems related to a number of different subjects at one and the same place together. It has mentioned different aspects in a scattered way; they are placed besides each other, but they are not incoherent and asymmetrical; on the contrary they have a special symmetry that keeps them connected to each other and which shapes the verses and chapters. Different subjects of Quran are like different priceless gems arranged in a special manner.
That is why the Holy Quran in the arrangement of its subject matter does not resemble any of the books of morals, legal, anecdotal, scientific knowledge, humanities, literature and history; but each of them is connected to others and they are all harmonious. The aim of Quran includes: The cognition of man, world, Almighty Allah, resurrection and life after death and also calling man to worship the one God and inviting him to fulfill the social and individual duties and purification and training of the self from bad manners and morals, development of the self by perfection of morals and finally, proximity to God and wayfaring on the path of God.
Subject matter of the Quran is mentioned with clarity and decisiveness in such a way that it has permeated into the depths of the soul of man and the hearer feels that the speaker is witnessing reality and is giving information from the unseen. It is from this aspect that the prophecies of the Quran inspire hope and its threats are severely pounding.
Contemplation on the verses of Quran polishes the soul of man and raises him above the world of matter and makes him familiar with the unseen world. Therefore, it is possible for the soul of man to witness realities in these emotions, which their eyes cannot see. Appeal of the verses of Quran is to such an extent that opponents of Islam labeled them as magic.
Sometimes, by hearing them, they were so bewildered that automatically they did not understand how to justify them. It was mentioned before also that Utbah was so bewildered on hearing the verses of Surah Fussilat that he expressed helplessness in justifying and explaining the verses and in reply to Quraish said: “I did not understand anything, except that he threatened with a lightning like the lightning of Aad and Thamud.”
Fearing this same ideal appeal, the leaders of polytheism said to people: Do not give ear to the words of Muhammad, because it is possible that you would be deceived.
Ibn Athir writes: Tufayl Ibn Amr Doosi, who was a man from a noble family and also an accomplished poet, says: I traveled to Mecca during the period the Messenger of Allah (S) and stayed there for some time. Some Quraish elders approached me and said: O Tufayl, you have come to our city at a time when this man (The Holy Prophet Muhammad) is living here.
He has cast us into hardships and has created discord among us. His discourse, like magic and sorcery, causes separation between father and son, wife and husband and brothers. Therefore, we fear that you might also be deceived. So do not speak a word to Muhammad and do not give ear to his talks.
Tufayl says: So much they emphasized this point that I became determined that I would not hear the words of Muhammad or speak to him, and I also stuffed cotton wool into my ears.
In the morning I went to the Holy Mosque and saw the Messenger of Allah (S) reciting prayers near the Kaaba. I went nearer; Allah had intended that his discourse would reach my ears. A beautiful discourse reached my ears. I said to myself: May your mother mourn for you, you are a poet and an intellectual and know well how to discriminate between good and bad. Thus what restrains you from hearing the statements of this man? If it is good and proper you should accept it and if it is evil and invalid, you can leave it.
Tufayl says: I waited a little while till Muhammad departed to his house, and then I followed him, when he entered the house, I also entered. At that moment I said: O Muhammad, leaders of Quraish told me this and that, but Allah intended that your discourse should reach my ears. I heard your beautiful discourse, tell me what is your aim and objective? So Muhammad presented Islam to me and recited the Quran. By Allah, I had not heard any discourse more beautiful and a matter more definite.5
Therefore, if you also had been conversant with Arab literature and interpretation of Quran, contemplated on the fresh style of its arrangement of verses and selection of words and the lofty subjects that Quran has chosen to express in those words and the construction of sentences, you will also discover some amazing aspects of the elegance of this heavenly book.
Another sign of the miraculousness of Quran is that there is no contradiction between its verses. Quran itself has highlighted this point and said:
أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ الْقُرْءَانَ وَلَوْ كَانَ مِنْ عِنْدِ غَيْرِ اللَّهِ لَوَجَدَواْ فِيهِ اخْتِلَفاً كَثِيراً
“Do they not then meditate on the Quran? And if it were from any other than Allah, they would have found in it many a discrepancy.” (4:82)
The above verse has reprimanded and said: Why do you not contemplate on the Quran so that you may understand that its verses have no contradiction and that they are revealed from Almighty Allah, because the discourse of man is not without contradiction.
Two kinds of contradictions are seen in books written by human beings and none of them is present in Quran.
First: Contradictions related to subtlety, choice of words, style and diction, observance of literary aspects, eloquence and clarity.
Since man is under constant change and perfection, as much as he writes and practices, as much expert he becomes and as much his writing improves and becomes more eloquent and beautiful. In the same way, different personal conditions, mood, different incidents and conditions of life, all of them affect the writing of a writer. Man in a condition of health or illness, joy or indisposition, happiness or sorrow, feeling of victory or defeat, exaltation or feeling of humiliation, cannot write in the same way and each of them affect his writing and beauty of discourse.
That is why if you study a book with attention you would realize that its different sections are not same from the aspect of beauty and elegance and the only book, which does not have such differences is the Holy Quran; neither the chapters revealed first have any difference with the last chapters nor the middle chapters and its verses.
The Holy Quran was revealed on the Prophet of Islam throughout a period of twenty-three years, gradually in different space and time and in different conditions, but in spite of this, no difference is seen in its different sections from the aspect of eloquence and clarity or elegance of discourse; this proves that Quran is the discourse of God, which is not susceptible to change and development in His being or actions.
Second: Existence of incongruous and contradictory matter is certain in the writing of human beings. If an unlettered author dictates for 23 years matter on various subjects and different topics, such a book would without any doubt not be free of contractions.
It is possible for a writer to write something at one time and later as a result of having changed his opinion about something may write to the contrary; or it is possible that he might do this because of forgetfulness or carelessness. Moreover it is possible that another writer coming after him may refute his arguments and through innovative arguments criticize him. In many instances it is seen that preceding writers have written on different subjects using their evidences and argumentations, but after a passage of time other writers have refuted those theories through new methods.
History testifies that The Holy Prophet Muhammad (S) did not attend any school.6 In the Holy Quran also he is mentioned as the unlettered prophet.7 All the verses and chapters of Quran were revealed to His Eminence (S) in twenty-three years in various instances and in fragments.
His Eminence did not write down the verses of Quran himself, on the contrary he dictated them to others. He did not revise any of his previous statements in any way. In spite of this, not the slightest contradiction or incompatibility is seen in the verses of Quran.
Instances cannot arise in rules and regulations related to society, rights and worship acts of Quran, which are not compatible to the religious and moral basis of that heavenly book. Nothing appears in problems related to morals, which is contradictory to the religious basis. In the stories of Quran and the biographies of the prophets and the past nations nothing is seen that is opposed to the fundamentals of belief or morals.
As regards problems connected to nature, nothing is seen which is opposed to the basics of thoughts. In points related to resurrection and rewards and punishment of the hereafter there is nothing incompatible to justice and perfection of Almighty Allah. With regard to points about general and special prophethood nothing is mentioned which is opposed to the principles of divine cognition.
Hence, although Quran has spoken about a number of different subjects, all of them are organized and compatible and do not have the smallest incompatibility between themselves. Therefore they cannot be a product of human beings. On the contrary, it is the discourse of God revealed on the heart of the Prophet of Islam and no one else can bring such a piece of writing.
The Holy Quran has informed about some events that were to occur in the future and this itself is considered to be a miraculous aspect, because it is not possible for ordinary human beings to get this knowledge. Below we shall mention some predictions issued by the Holy Quran:
The Holy Quran says:
الم / غُلِبَتِ الرُّومُ / فِى أَدْنَى الْأَرْضِ وَهُم مِّن بَعْدِ غَلَبِهِمْ سَيَغْلِبُونَ / فِى بِضْعِ سِنِينَ لِلَّهِ الْأَمْرُ مِن قَبْلُ وَمِن بَعْدُ وَيَوْمَئِذٍ يَفْرَحُ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ / بِنَصْرِ اللَّهِ يَنصُرُ مَن يَشَآءُ وَهُوَ الْعَزِيزُ الرَّحِيمُ / وَعْدَ اللَّهِ لَا يُخْلِفُ اللَّهُ وَعْدَهُ وَلَكِنَّ أَكْثَرَ النَّاسِ لَايَعْلَمُونَ
“Alif Lam Mim. The Romans are vanquished, in a near land, and they, after being vanquished, shall overcome, within a few years. Allah’s is the command before and after; and on that day the believers shall rejoice, with the help of Allah; He helps whom He pleases; and He is the Mighty, the Merciful; (This is) Allah’s promise! Allah will not fail His promise, but most people do not know. (30:1-6)
From this verse, it can be concluded that in the early period of Islam, defeat and hardships would befall the soldiers of Rome. This event occurred near the land of Hijaz and the Arabs of the Arabian Peninsula, especially the new converts to Islam, became very much disconcerted at the defeat of the Romans. The above verse was revealed at that time informing the Muslims that after this defeat, in a short period of less than ten years, the Romans would overcome their enemies and believers would become pleased with the help of God.
The prediction of Quran proved true and within that stipulated time the Romans, who were the People of Book conquered Persia; believers were also pleased by this victory.
It is necessary to mention about the political and administrative conditions of the two great powers of that time (Rome and Iran) and the clashes that they had with each other in order to fully understand this important event of history:
Before the advent of Islam, two great imperial powers ruled in Asia and the neighborhood of Arabian lands: One was Iran, which had a huge land mass under its control, which was much larger than present Iran. Another power was that of the Romans, whose kingdom stretched up to Egypt and Syria.
These two powers were always engaged in a struggle of expansion of their boundaries and power and were all the time in confrontation with each other. Sometimes one of them considered his opponent as weak and attacked him and seized some of his territory and wealth and plundered those places. After some time the defeated party would regain its power and then take up arms against the other and re-conquer the areas that had been seized from it before. This conflict continued forever between these two opponents.
Arabs of the surrounding areas were also not safe as a result of the confrontation of the two adversaries. The capital of the rulers from the family of Lakham in the city of Hira (near Kufa) who were under overlordship of the Sasanid rulers, who had ruled for many years. Their reign continued till around 602 A.D. At that time Khosrow Parvez decided to annex their kingdom and join it to his dominion.8
When a Sasanid king became aware that the Himyar king intends to secede from the Sasanid domination, he sent a huge army in 598 A.D. to southern Arabia, which was able to vanquish them after a severe fight and south Arabia became a province of the Sasanid kingdom.9 On the other hand, the Roman kingdoms also gave business to south Arabia and helped that country in opposing their adversaries, because many Christians had settled down in those territories.
That is why the people of the Arabian Peninsula were affected by the victory or defeat of each of these two opponents. When the Sasanids gained victory, the Christians of Arabia became despondent and the polytheists were elated, since they considered the Iranians to be their co-religionists as both of them were fire worshippers, so they considered their victory as their own victory.
On the other hand, when the Romans were victorious, the Christians of Arabia became elated, but the polytheists were aggrieved as they sensed danger. Now we shall explain the main points:
The Prophet of Islam (S) was vested with the office of prophethood in 610 A.D. in Mecca. From 602 to 610 A.D. it was a very bad period for the Roman power, because as result of civil disturbance and internal strife, it had become absolutely weak. During this time Khosrow Parvez, the Sasanid king discovered the weakness of the Roman Empire; so he took advantage of the circumstances and launched fierce attack on his opponent. These attacks began from 610 and continued till 619 A.D. The strong Sasanid fighters gained remarkable victories one after another.
From 605 to 613 A.D. cities like: Dara, Aaamad, Adsaa, Nasirapolis, Aleppo, Apaya and Damascus fell under the domination of the Sasanids.
Khosrow Parvez became arrogant as a result of his remarkable victories and he declared a holy war against the Christians. Some Jew groups also joined ranks with him. In the year 614 he attacked Jerusalem and killed around 90000 Christians and plundered the city. He razed and burnt down a number of churches. During these attacks they seized and brought to Iran the crucifix that was considered by the Christians to be the original and was the most venerated emblem of their faith. Parvez wrote to Hercules the Roman Emperor:
From Khosrow Parvez, the greatest Lord and master of the rulers of the earth to Hercules, a worthless servant who is ignorant of himself, you say that you trust in God, but why did He did not save Jerusalem from my hands?
In the year 616, Khosrow sent a huge army to Alexandria and in 619 he conquered Egypt. His sent another army to Asia Minor and occupied Chaldea in 617.10
Rapid and wide ranging Sasanid victories were really remarkable from different aspects. Some information of these victories reached the people of Arabia who lived in the surrounding lands. The reaction of Arabs to these reports used to be of two kinds: Polytheists used to be elated at them, because they considered their victory as victory against forces of monotheism. But Christians were aggrieved and they feared their safety and peace.
Muslims of the early period of Islam who were very few in numbers, and were usually persecuted and oppressed by polytheists, used to be extremely wary of the rapid and remarkable victories of the Sasanids. Moreover, they also feared that Arabia would also come under their subjugation. Because the enemy has reached up to ‘Azrat’ which is mentioned in Quran as ‘Adnal arz’ and they were extremely fearful of the oncoming danger.
The above verse was revealed with regard to these circumstances and it gave glad tidings to Muslims that in a period of less than ten years, the soldiers of Rome would vanquish the Persians and the believers would become elated at the divine help.
Ibn Athir writes: ‘Adnal Arz’ implies the land of Azrat since it is an Arab land closest to Byzantine territories and the Romans in some battles had retreated to this area. The Prophet of Islam and Muslims were aggrieved at the victory of Persians over the Romans, since the Romans were People of the Book and the infidels were pleased at these victories and considered the Majus like their own selves. When this verse was revealed, Abu Bakr laid a bet for a hundred camels with Ubayy ibn Khalaf, although at that time betting was not unlawful.11
Muslims became hopeful of the divine promise and began to count the days for its realization. At last the promise of God was fulfilled and the Romans gained victory over the Persians.
It is mentioned in history that the Roman Emperor, Hercules I was extremely aggrieved at the defeat at the hands of Persians and decided to strengthen his weak points and take serious steps to regain the territories lost to their opponents. With this aim, he took reformative steps and corrections and prepared his men to launch a severe and widespread attack.
In 622 A.D. he sent a powerful naval force through the Black Sea in Armenis to attack the Persians from the rear. The next year he attacked Azerbaijan and plundered the birth place of Zoroaster and extinguished their holy fire, which had been burning since ages. They recovered the holy crucifix from the Persians and returned it to Jerusalem.12
Although Romans were defeated at Azraat (Adnal Arz) in 613 A.D., they continued repeated and formidable attacks on Persians till year 622 A.D. when they were finally victorious. That is they gained victory in nine years after their defeat as mentioned in the Holy Quran as “Within a few years”. That is why the prediction of Quran when it said: second victory of Romans would occur in a period of less than ten years after their defeat, proved true. At that time, Christians and Muslims were elated at the new victory of Romans over the Persians.
Realization of this divine promise is an evidence of the miraculous aspect of Quran.13
- 1. Al-Bidaya wan Nihaya, Vol. 3, Pg. 78.
- 2. Al-Bidaya wan Nihaya, Vol. 3, Pg. 80.
- 3. Al-Bidaya wan Nihaya, Vol. 3, Pg. 82.
- 4. Al-Bidaya wan Nihaya, Vol. 3, Pg. 82.
- 5. Usud al-Ghaba, Vol. 3, Pg. 54.
- 6. “And you did not recite before it any book, nor did you transcribe one with your right hand, for then could those who say untrue things have doubted.” (29:48)
- 7. “Those who follow the Apostle-Prophet, the unlettered, whom they find written down with them in the Taurat and the Injeel (who) enjoins them good and forbids them evil, and makes lawful to them the good things and makes unlawful to them impure things, and removes from them their burden and the shackles which were upon them; so (as for) those who believe in him and honor him and help him, and follow the light which has been sent down with him, these it is that are the successful.” (7:157)
- 8. Tarikh Iran Az Salukian taa Furupashi daulat Sasani, Vol. 3, Pg. 263.
- 9. Tarikh Iran Az Salukian taa Furupashi daulat Sasani, Vol. 3, Pg. 256.
- 10. Will Durant, History of Civilization, Part I, Vol. 4, Pg. 181; Tarikh Iran Az Salukian taa Furupashi daulat Sasani, Vol. 3, Pg. 264-265.
- 11. Al-Kamil fit Tarikh, Vol. 1, Pg. 479.
- 12. Tarikh Iran Az Salukian taa Furupashi daulat Sasani, Vol. 3, Pg. 266; Will Durant, History of Civilization, Part I, Vol. 4, Pg. 182.
- 13. Historians of Islam like Tabari, Ibne Athir, Abul Fida and others, and in the same way commentators of Quran are having unanimity that the promise of the Holy Quran was finally fulfilled and the Romans after their defeat were able to overpower the Persians and the gap between this defeat and victory was less than ten years, but regretfully the accurate time of defeat and victory is not recorded in history.
In Islamic sources, it is mentioned that the victory of Romans occurred during the time of the Battle of Badr (2 A.H.) or at the time of Battle of Hudaibiyah (6 A.H.), but both these times do not tally with the prophecy of Quran because their defeat in 613 A.D. corresponds to the third year of Hijra which is 13 and 16 years respectively from Battle of Badr and Battle of Hudaibiyah. While the prophecy of Quran is that the victory of the Romans would be in less than ten years. Hence, none of these two dates tally with the prophecy of Quran, but what is mentioned in the books of the history of Iran is absolutely accurate. And hence we should accept that the victory of Romans occurred around the year 13 A.H.