Author Topic: Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham  (Read 6084 times)

Wakas

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Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham
« on: January 28, 2011, 05:23:34 PM »
peace all,

The traditional version can be found here: http://www.islamreligion.com/articles/293/
There are small variations here and there of the above, depending on commentator.

Many may not be aware that in Traditional history/sources there is a difference of opinion as to who the intended "sacrifice" son was: Ishmael or Isaac. An overview can be found here: http://www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/sacrifice.htm
The Bible says it was Isaac. Interestingly, it seems that the later Ishmael-Mecca version was a later development, which just so happened to give justification/eminence to the region of Mecca as the location and the various rituals in Traditional HaJJ.

Biblical and Islamic commentators say Abraham lived to about 175 yrs old, for those who didn't know. Ibn Kathir notes how Abraham travelled on the mythical beast known as Buraq in his travels.

The following is a brief tentative analysis. It implies it was Isaac not Ishmael who Abraham sacrificed, as in left, in order to spread the message and bring God's system to fruition in a place. Traditional history has Abraham in several places, spreading the message etc.

Chronological Order from The Quran: the story of Abraham

6:74 his father and people in error, realises this and becomes of the guided
6:79 I shall turn my face/attention/being to the One who initiated the heavens and the Earth
6:81-82 Which of the two parties has more right to security? Those who believe and do not dress their belief with wrong; for them is the security, and they are guided.
21:58-60, 29:26 broke idols, he was young-man/fatan, threatened to burn him, he went away with Lot to a land blessed for the beings
19:49, 21:72, 29:27, 11:71 when he left them and what they served, he was given Isaac and Jacob (grandson), both saliheena, both imams

37:100, 51:28, 11:71 asks for son from saliheena/righteous, given bashar/glad tidings of halim/clement son, alim/learned - when with a woman barren old, Abraham is shaykh/old
37:102 son grows old enough to work with him, Abraham says he dreamt of sacrificing/leaving him for a noble cause,(e.g. to spread message, build the system) a command he fulfils
37:112-113 and we gave him glad tidings/bashar of Isaac, prophet among saliheena/righteous, of Abraham and Isaac's offspring some good some bad

### after this point, Isaac is never mentioned with Abraham ### coincidence?

22:26 We assigned to Abraham the position of the house, that do not associate with me anything, purify it for those who...
3:96-97 the first house set-down was by/with bakka, blessed, guidance for the beings, in it are clear signs, maqam Abraham, entered it was securing, mankind owe God HJJ (of/at) al bayt

14:35 Abraham has sons (plural? alluded to in 6:86-87?), when asked for this town to be made safe/secure
14:37 settled from my progeny/children (not all !!) in a valley uncultivated, bi al bayt al muharam*, so that they establish the salat/bond, let men incline towards them, provide fruits
14:39 in his late-age, was given Ishmael and Isaac
*al-jalalayn says house was there (or remnants of it) from before the flood (of noah), ibn abbas makes no special mention, ibn kathir says this is apparently a prayer made after building it, even though settled implies a recent thing, not something said a decade later when ishmael is grown up and helped him build it. If it was town, then the likelihood of Hagar having to run around for water etc is low.

2:124 tried with words/kalimat, once fulfilled he was made imam, he had offspring at this time
2:125 We made the house a place of return/reward/filling and security, Abraham and Ishmael told to purify it for those who... (if Isaac was there, he would have been mentioned)
2:126 asked make this town securing, feed its people
2:127 Abraham and Ishmael raised foundations from/of the house (if Isaac was there he would surely have helped, hence was not there)
2:128 make us both submissive, and from our offspring let us (plural) and a nation/community submit to you, show us (plural) our rites
2:129 raise a messenger from them, purify them
2:132 enjoined his sons (plural?) and Jacob*, God chosen al deen for you, so do not die except as muslim (if Jacob is grandson, then Abraham is older)
*if Jacob was there, either he travelled to Abraham, or Abraham did travel back and forth and said this to Jacob also.

2:258 , 4:54 God had given abraham mlk/control/dominion, kitab/decree, wisdom, he was a nation/community


###
Traditional Islamic History - Problems
1) often mentions Abraham leaving his people then given Isaac, Jacob, and the story of Lot's people together, implying this is the sequence when tradition has it that there is a gap in which Abraham emigrates to Mecca leaves Ishmael and Hagar there, returns and comes back, builds Kabbah, goes back then receives news of Isaac whilst messengers give news of the people of Lot's punishment. This is plausible but unlikely.
2) Abraham leaves Ishmael in Mecca, returns when he is old enough to work with him (Abraham is already old/sheikh+Ishmael's age at this point so him lifting stones etc is unusual but possible I guess) and they raise foundation of Kabba. To make this story possible since Abraham allegedly settled from his progeny near God's Sacred House, it would have to have been there, or some part of it, e.g. foundations, pre-Abraham. IF this is true, why would Abraham leave it unbuilt, then come back a decade later to build it as is traditionally told? Seems odd.
3) He fulfilled command to sacrifice his son, but technically did not, whilst in the leaving him understanding this would not be a problem.
4) Descriptive words used for Isaac (saliheena, glad tidings) is used for the intended sacrificed son, see 37:100-113, which would make Quran tantamount to being misleading, if it was Ishmael.
5) When the son reached working age with him, implies Abraham is around, and if he did leave him, this shows he could fend for himself at this age, so leaving him is not a bad thing, unlike the traditional version in which Abraham left a mother and child with no provisions in the middle of a desert.

###
Background: http://free-minds.org/forum/index.php?topic=13069.msg273059#msg273059
###


If anyone has comments or further analysis, please feel free to contribute.
All information in my posts is correct to the best of my knowledge only and thus should not be taken as a fact. One should seek knowledge and verify: 17:36, 20:114, 35:28, 49:6, 58:11. My articles

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Mazhar

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Re: Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2011, 02:24:23 AM »
Quote
4) Descriptive words used for Isaac (saliheena, glad tidings) is used for the intended sacrificed son, see 37:100-113, which would make Quran tantamount to being misleading, if it was Ishmael.

Chronology

أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ الْقُرْآنَ أَمْ عَلَى قُلُوبٍ أَقْفَالُهَا

The news of grant of Ishaque alahissalam is given after the sacrificial incident is over and was an event of past, as per the chrological information contained in 37:100-113.

Wakas

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Re: Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2011, 06:52:59 AM »
peace Mazhar,

That is what is commonly thought, although AQ does not have any explicit indication of it in the Arabic except it happens to mention Isaac's name after.

There is only one explicit reference in which Abraham is given glad tidings of a son and that is in reference to Isaac. Your view would imply two incidents.

The traditional account has it that when the messengers gave him glad tidings of a son (they say Isaac), his wife was surprised, but he was already given Ishmael in his old-age as per AQ, so I'm not sure if they would have had that reaction, but it could be argued they were even older at this point, hence were surprised.

However there is a possible significant argument against the Ishmael before Isaac view I just realised, in addition to what I have already said:

Quote
21:58-60, 29:26 broke idols, he was young-man/fatan, threatened to burn him, he went away with Lot to a land blessed for the beings
19:49, 21:72, 29:27, 11:71 when he left them and what they served, he was given Isaac and Jacob (grandson), both saliheena, both imams

14:39 in his late-age, was given Ishmael and Isaac


When he left them and what they served he was given Isaac, but if it is implied Ishmael came before Isaac, he must have had Ishmael prior to leaving but we already know he was a young-man when he left, thus would contradict AQ when it says he was elderly when given Ishmael.

The only way around this that I can see is to say AQ does say he was given Isaac after he left them but it just so happens not to mention Ishmael but Ishmael also came later but before Isaac. This would seem like a very odd way for AQ to tell us but is possible I guess.

I assume this is how you would resolve this problem?

As a side note The Bible says Abraham had Ishmael AFTER leaving but before Isaac, but when it says Abraham was to sacrifice Isaac it was his only son (when he had two). Bible exegetes try to explain this away, see link in original post.
All information in my posts is correct to the best of my knowledge only and thus should not be taken as a fact. One should seek knowledge and verify: 17:36, 20:114, 35:28, 49:6, 58:11. My articles

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Wakas

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Re: Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2011, 07:12:20 AM »
I just noted that in 21:85 Ishmael is described as having sabir and of saliheena, which are words used for the intended-sacrifice son, so this neutralises any argument based on exclusivity of terms that I mentioned previously.

There is also a possible hint of interpretation of dreams given to Abraham and Isaac [12:6] and vision [38:45], providing a possible link showing relevance to Abraham/Isaac, not of Ishmael.
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Mazhar

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Re: Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2011, 08:09:23 AM »
Quote
14:39 in his late-age, was given Ishmael and Isaac

Note the order of narration of two sons. You will always find it when they are mentioned together;

2:133; 2:136; 2:140; 3:84; 4:163; 14:39. Elder son is always mentioned first if one mentions his sons.

Mazhar

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Re: Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2011, 08:18:25 AM »
Quote
peace Mazhar,

That is what is commonly thought, although AQ does not have any explicit indication of it in the Arabic except it happens to mention Isaac's name after.

Peace Wakas,

The Qur'aan has very specifically mentioned the chronology of events in 37:100-113. The only problem is that you have not yet paid attention to learn how an Arabic text is read and understood. Every subsequent particle and word needs to be related to the words preceeding it to understand what is being conveyed therein. It is not that Ishaque alahissalam is mentioned afterwards, but it is a separate information from what has been described and conveyed before it. There is no point talking of "good news of Ishaque" after finishing the sacrifice episode of son who was a grown up to an age where he could assist his father.

Mazhar

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Re: Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2011, 08:23:33 AM »
Quote
There is also a possible hint of interpretation of dreams given to Abraham and Isaac [12:6]

There is no such hint in 12:06.

Mazhar

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Re: Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2011, 08:46:45 AM »
Quote
There is only one explicit reference in which Abraham is given glad tidings of a son and that is in reference to Isaac.

This too seems  a conclusion drawn in haste.

رَبِّ هَبْ لِي مِنَ الصَّالِحِينَ

فَبَشَّرْنَاهُ بِغُلَامٍ حَلِيمٍ

Particle Fa denotes cause and effect-response; sequence of two things whih have a relationship of cause and effect. In response to request/prayer he was given glad news of a son, qualitatively described as حَلِيمٍ.

About Ishaque alahissalm it is specifically told that for him no request/prayer was made; he was granted as an unsolicited gift. And when news about him were conveyed through the Messengers his qualitative description was given as عليم.


Tlepsh

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Re: Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2011, 10:08:26 AM »

فَبَشَّرْنَاهُ بِغُلَامٍ حَلِيمٍ
37:101 So We gave him good news of a compassionate child. (İsaac)



وَبَشَّرْنَاهُ بِإِسْحَاقَ نَبِيًّا مِّنَ الصَّالِحِينَ

Wakas

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Re: Chronological order from The Quran: story of Abraham
« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2011, 11:35:02 AM »
peace Mazhar,

You never answered my question. Quote: "I assume this is how you would resolve this problem?"

Quote
Note the order of narration of two sons. You will always find it when they are mentioned together;

I also noticed this but did not research AQ to see if when lists of such people are given if they are always sequential. Have you researched this? If they are always sequential, that would be strong evidence for Ishmael before Isaac. In 6:83-87 it is Isaac first, but it has info in between the named people.

Your replies #5, 6 and 7 are, as they stand, baseless non-points. 37:112 uses "wa".


peace Tlepsh,

Is your translation possible from the Arabic, i.e. "Isaac's prophethood...". I'm not sure.
All information in my posts is correct to the best of my knowledge only and thus should not be taken as a fact. One should seek knowledge and verify: 17:36, 20:114, 35:28, 49:6, 58:11. My articles

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