|What is Islam?|
The most complete way of life is found in the religion of Islam. The word Islam means, Â“surrenderÂ” to the will of God (Allah in Arabic). Since there is only one God and mankind is one species, the religion that God has ordained for human beings is one. So why the different religions?
God in His mercy had sent messengers to convey His message, to different peoples, in different times. Each prophet came with guidance and miracles that were relevant for his time, and for his people, but the message was the same: That there is only one God, and worship is for him alone. This "Islam" was the religion brought by all the prophets of God. Islam was the religion of Adam, Noah, Abraham, Moses and Jesus (peace be upon them all). God has in His Grace, addressed this issue to man in His final revelation, the Noble Quran.
Â“Seek they other then the religion of God, when unto Him submits whosoever is in the heavens and the earth, willingly or unwillingly, and unto Him they will be returned.
Say: We believe in God and that which is revealed unto us and that which was revealed unto Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac and Jacob and his sons, and that which was given to Moses and Jesus and the Prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between them, and unto Him we have surrendered.Â”
Â“And for every nation there is a messenger.Â”
Â“And we sent Noah unto his people (and he said): O my people! Serve God. You have no other god save Him. Will you not ward off evil?Â”
Man was to follow each prophet when he came, till the advent of another prophet Thus the latter prophet was followed since there was new guidance relevant to that latter time. Miracles were also for that time and for those people. They cannot be re-demonstrated now. All this is evident for example, when Jesus (pbuh) said to the Children of Israel:
Â“And I have come confirming that which was before me of the Torah and to make lawful some of that which was forbidden unto you. I come to you with a clear sign from your Lord, so keep your duty to God and obey me.Â”
Since these messengers were sent only for their people and their time, mankind has since tampered with those previous revelations (Torah, Gospel etc), and the message of those respective prophets has been perverted, leaving behind much confusion and hearsay:
Â“And lo! There is a party of them who distort the Scripture with their tongues, that you may think what they say is from the Scripture when it is not. And they say: It is from God, when it is not from God; and they speak a lie concerning God knowingly.Â”
Consequently, God has sent the prophet Muhammad (pbuh) as His last messenger to mankind. This implies that he must come with a complete and clear guidance,and a clear proof, for all humanity and all times till the Last Day. Otherwise the message is void. Also, the message must be confirming the previous messengers of before. The revelation, guidance, and miracle he received is the Quran.
Â“O people of the Scripture! Now has our messenger come unto you to make things plain after an interval (of cessation) of the messengers, lest you should say: There came not unto us a messenger of cheer nor any warner.Â”
Prophets after prophets came to reclaim lost humanity. Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) came with the seal that perfected Islam. The message contains the teachings of all the previous messengers, and in addition it contains what will be necessary until Judgement. Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has been sent for all mankind. Thus there will be no other messenger after him.
Â“Nothing is said to thee (Muhammad) save what was said unto the messengers before thee.Â”
Â“Say (O Muhammad): O mankind! Lo! I am a messenger of God to you all- (the messenger of) Him unto whom belongs the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth. There is no God save Him.Â”
Â“He is the messenger of God and the Seal of the Prophets. And God is Aware of all things.Â”