Universality of Prophethood
The Holy Qur’an clearly states that God has sent prophets to all people in the world. The prophets not only bring a universal message of love of God but the prophethood itself is universal in nature. No nation can claim to be superior or the “chosen one” because a prophet was sent to them as this honour is a shared heritage of all mankind.
“Verily, We have sent thee with the truth, as a bearer of glad tidings and as a Warner; and there is no people to whom a Warner has not been sent.” (Ch.35 v.25)
Revelations to all Prophets
Names of several prophets are mentioned in the Holy Qur’an thus validating their stature as the messengers of God and ensuring that their names and history is recorded forever.
“Surely, We have sent revelation to thee, as We sent revelation to Noah and the Prophets after him; and We sent revelation to Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac and Jacob and his children and to Jesus and Job and Jonah and Aaron and Solomon, and We gave David a Book.” (Ch.4 v.164)
Prophets Across the Ages
In addition to the prophets named in the Holy Qur’an, Islam acknowledges all other prophets not named in the Holy Qur’an. As part of faith, a Muslim believes that, across the ages and in all places, God sent prophets for the ongoing guidance of humanity.
“And We sent some Messengers whom We have already mentioned to thee and some Messengers whom We have not mentioned to thee …” (Ch.4 v.165)
Belief in All Prophets and Scriptures
The Holy Qur’an states that Muslims are required to believe in all prophets and all books and should not make any distinction between the prophets as far as the belief in prophets in concerned. This message creates a universal brotherhood of all faiths and lays the foundation of interfaith harmony and peace.
“This Messenger of Ours believes in that which has been revealed to him from his Lord, and so do the believers: all of them believe in Allah, and in His angels, and in His Books, and in His Messengers, saying, ‘We make no distinction between any of His Messengers …” (Ch.2 v.286)
No Monopoly on Salvation
The Holy Qur’an categorically states that Christians, Jews and others can also enter heaven and that Muslims do not have a monopoly on salvation. The doors of salvation are open to all who believe in the God and do good deeds. It is up to God and God alone to decide who is the recipient of His blessings and for whom His wrath awaits.
“Surely, the Believers, and the Jews, and the Christians and the Sabians – whichever party from among these truly believes in Allah and the Last Day and does good deeds – shall have their reward with their Lord, and no fear shall come upon them, nor shall they grieve.” (Ch.2 v.63)
No Compulsion in Religion
The Holy Qur’an depicts religion as a matter between a person and God, verse after verse repeats the fact that only God knows what’s in the mind and heart of a person and it is only He who has the final decree. Every human is free to belief in what he or she thinks is right and no licence is given to anyone to force ones beliefs on others.
“There should be no compulsion in religion …” (Ch.2 v.257)
“Admonish, therefore, for thou art but an admonisher; Thou hast no authority to compel them.” (Ch.88 v.22-23)
Harmony and Mutual Respect
It is declared in unambiguous terms in the Holy Qur’an that Muslims are not the only ones who stand firmly by the truth and admonish and dispense justice righteously. Amongst the followers of other faiths, there are also people who do the same. Religious peace cannot be achieved without cultivating such broadminded, magnanimous and humanely understanding attitudes towards the people of other faiths. Referring to all religions of the world, in general, the Holy Qur’an declares:
“Of those We have created, there are a people that guide men with truth and do justice therewith.” (Ch.7 v.182)
The Holy Qur’an does not permit Muslims to treat with injustice even such enemies as had committed aggression against them due to religious enmity.
“… And let not the enmity of a people that they hindered you from access to the Sacred Mosque, incite you to treat them with inequity. Instead help each other in good things of life and in all such things as are based on the fear of Allah. Do not, however, help one another in the sinful things and transgression …” (Ch.5 v.3)
Referring to those non-believers who were not known to have taken any active part in hostilities against Muslims, the Holy Qur’an says:
“Allah forbids you not, respecting those who have not fought against you on account of your religion; and who have not driven you out of your homes, that you be kind to them and deal equitably with them; surely, Allah loves those who are equitable” (Ch.60 v.9)
Muslims are also taught to invite the People of the Book and to cooperate with them in spreading the Message of the Unity of God-a belief shared with them.
“Say, ‘O People of the Book! Come to a word equal between us and you-that we worship none but Allah, and that we associate no partner with Him, and that some of us take not others for Lords besides Allah’ But if they turn away, then say, ‘Bear witness that we have submitted to God” (Ch.3 v.65)