The Qur’an boasts many audacious claims against the Hebrew and Christian scriptures, but none is more outrageous and verifiably false than sura 7:157-158 where Muhammad claimed to be the fulfillment of prophecies from both Moses and Jesus.
My apologies in advance. This is going to be a very long rebuttal, but it’s necessary to fully address the entirety of the claims.
For references to the Qur’an, I will be quoting from the Sahih International so I may provide verifiable links to https://quran.com, but for clarification, I will also reference the Translation of the meaning of The Nobel Qur’an in the English Language (pages 192-193) by professors Dr. Taqi-ud-Din Hilali and Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan and published by King Fahd Complex for the Printing of the Holy Quran K.S.A. (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia).
As you can see from the sura below taken from the Sahih International, the Qur’an clearly claims Muhammad is the messenger of Allah and the fulfillment of prophecies from the Torah and Gospel.
Qur’an Al-A’raf 7:157-158 (Sahih International) 157 Those who follow the Messenger, the unlettered prophet, whom they find written in what they have of the Torah and the Gospel, who enjoins upon them what is right and forbids them what is wrong and makes lawful for them the good things and prohibits for them the evil and relieves them of their burden and the shackles which were upon them. So they who have believed in him, honored him, supported him and followed the light which was sent down with him – it is those who will be the successful. 158 Say, [O Muhammad], “O mankind, indeed I am the Messenger of Allah to you all, [from Him] to whom belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth. There is no deity except Him; He gives life and causes death.” So believe in Allah and His Messenger, the unlettered prophet, who believes in Allah and His words, and follow him that you may be guided.
Dr. Taqi-ud-Din Hilali and Dr. Muhammad Muhsin Khan provide excellent clarification by expanding on the Sahih International, both amplifying the text itself with in-line commentary and providing detailed footnotes.
From the expanded text, please note the specific in-line references to the locations of the prophecies in the Torah (Deuteronomy 18:15) and Gospel (John 14:16). They remove any speculation on my part.
Deuteronomy 18:15 (ESV) “The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your brothers—it is to him you shall listen…”
John 14:16 (ESV) ”And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever…”
In their footnotes, please note the additional scripture references the professors include: Deuteronomy 18:18, 21:21 (sic), Psalm 118:22-23, Isaiah 42:1-13, Habakkuk 3:3-4, Matthew 21:42-43, and John 14:12-17, 26-28; 16:7-14. Of these, Deuteronomy 21:21 must be a typographical error, because it does not relate to the rest of the text, as you can see here. I will address the rest of these references individually, beginning with Deuteronomy 18, but also including its greater context.
Deuteronomy 18:15-22 (ESV) 15 “The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your brothers—it is to him you shall listen— 16 just as you desired of the LORD your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly, when you said, ‘Let me not hear again the voice of the LORD my God or see this great fire any more, lest I die.’ 17 And the LORD said to me, ‘They are right in what they have spoken. 18 I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their brothers. And I will put my words in his mouth, and he shall speak to them all that I command him. 19 And whoever will not listen to my words that he shall speak in my name, I myself will require it of him. 20 But the prophet who presumes to speak a word in my name that I have not commanded him to speak, or who speaks in the name of other gods, that same prophet shall die.’ 21 And if you say in your heart, ‘How may we know the word that the LORD has not spoken?’— 22 when a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word that the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously. You need not be afraid of him. (emphasis mine)
According to this passage, a prophet who speaks a false word should be killed. Does this passage predict the rise of Muhammad? No, not according to Luke’s historical record of the Apostle Peter’s address at the temple in Jerusalem after a man was healed.
Acts 3:13-26 (ESV) 13 The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob, the God of our fathers, glorified his servant Jesus, whom you delivered over and denied in the presence of Pilate, when he had decided to release him. 14 But you denied the Holy and Righteous One, and asked for a murderer to be granted to you, 15 and you killed the Author of life, whom God raised from the dead. To this we are witnesses. 16 And his name—by faith in his name—has made this man strong whom you see and know, and the faith that is through Jesus has given the man this perfect health in the presence of you all. 17 “And now, brothers, I know that you acted in ignorance, as did also your rulers. 18 But what God foretold by the mouth of all the prophets, that his Christ would suffer, he thus fulfilled. 19 Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out, 20 that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus, 21 whom heaven must receive until the time for restoring all the things about which God spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets long ago. 22 Moses said, ‘The Lord God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brothers. You shall listen to him in whatever he tells you. 23 And it shall be that every soul who does not listen to that prophet shall be destroyed from the people.’ 24 And all the prophets who have spoken, from Samuel and those who came after him, also proclaimed these days. 25 You are the sons of the prophets and of the covenant that God made with your fathers, saying to Abraham, ‘And in your offspring shall all the families of the earth be blessed.’ 26 God, having raised up his servant, sent him to you first, to bless you by turning every one of you from your wickedness.” (emphasis mine)
From this passage of scripture, which was recorded roughly 600 years before Muhammad’s first revelation, we can clearly see the prophecy of Moses was fulfilled by Jesus Christ, not Muhammad.
What about Psalm 118:22-23?
Psalm 118:22-23 (ESV) 22 The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone. 23 This is the LORD’s doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.
There are two critical passages of scripture that refute any claims that this may apply to Muhammad. The first is found in Isaiah 28:16.
Isaiah 28:16 (ESV) therefore thus says the Lord GOD, “Behold, I am the one who has laid as a foundation in Zion, a stone, a tested stone, a precious cornerstone, of a sure foundation: ‘Whoever believes will not be in haste.’ (emphasis mine)
Notice the location of the cornerstone being laid by Jehovah God: Zion. That is a reference to Mt. Zion in Jerusalem, which is also referred to as Jehovah God’s holy mountain.
Psalm 48:1-2 (ESV) 1 Great is the LORD and greatly to be praised in the city of our God! His holy mountain, 2 beautiful in elevation, is the joy of all the earth, Mount Zion, in the far north, the city of the great King.
Obadiah 1:17 (ESV) But in Mount Zion there shall be those who escape, and it shall be holy, and the house of Jacob shall possess their own possessions.
There is no mention of Jerusalem or Zion in the Qur’an. Likewise, there is no mention of Mecca or the Ka’bah in the Hebrew or Christian scriptures, so that’s the first hint the professors are mistaken. But, before I provide the second scripture disproving Psalm 118 as a reference to Muhammad, the professors also include a reference to Matthew 21:42-43 to make their point.
Matthew 21:42-44 (ESV) 42 Jesus said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures: “‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Lord’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes’? 43 Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of God will be taken away from you and given to a people producing its fruits. 44 And the one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; and when it falls on anyone, it will crush him.” (emphasis mine)
Since there is no elaboration in their footnotes, I can only surmise – as highlighted – that they included this passage because Jesus claimed the kingdom of God would be given to another people. They are not mistaken. It was taken from the Jews temporarily (Romans 11) because they rejected Jesus and His message, and then it was shared with the rest of the world who were not Jews, otherwise known as Gentiles.
Acts 13:46-47 (ESV) 46 And Paul and Barnabas spoke out boldly, saying, “It was necessary that the word of God be spoken first to you. Since you thrust it aside and judge yourselves unworthy of eternal life, behold, we are turning to the Gentiles. 47 For so the Lord has commanded us, saying, “‘I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.’” (emphasis mine)
That is why Jehovah God told Abraham, “In your offspring shall all the nations of the earth shall be blessed” (Genesis 22:18). It wasn’t a promise for the Jews only. It was a promise that encompassed the Jews (first) and those outside Judaism (second) who would believe in Jesus, the fulfillment of the New Covenant to the Jews spoken of by the prophet Jeremiah (Jeremiah 31:31-40).
The second scripture that emphatically proves Psalm 118 is not talking about Muhammad is taken from Luke’s historical record of another address by the Apostle Peter.
Acts 4:8-12 (ESV) 8 Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said to them, “Rulers of the people and elders, 9 if we are being examined today concerning a good deed done to a crippled man, by what means this man has been healed, 10 let it be known to all of you and to all the people of Israel that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom you crucified, whom God raised from the dead—by him this man is standing before you well. 11 This Jesus is the stone that was rejected by you, the builders, which has become the cornerstone. 12 And there is salvation in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.” (emphasis mine)
Not only does Peter clarify Jesus as the object of the reference from Psalm 118, but he also declares there is no other means of salvation besides Jesus. That’s a definitive rejection of the professors’ claims and the claims of the Qur’an.
What about Isaiah 42:1-13? This is a particularly long and seemingly unrelated quote, but I’m addressing it out of necessity since the professors included it.
Isaiah 42:1-13 (ESV) 1 Behold my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen, in whom my soul delights; I have put my Spirit upon him; he will bring forth justice to the nations. 2 He will not cry aloud or lift up his voice, or make it heard in the street; 3 a bruised reed he will not break, and a faintly burning wick he will not quench; he will faithfully bring forth justice. 4 He will not grow faint or be discouraged till he has established justice in the earth; and the coastlands wait for his law. 5 Thus says God, the LORD, who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread out the earth and what comes from it, who gives breath to the people on it and spirit to those who walk in it: 6 “I am the LORD; I have called you in righteousness; I will take you by the hand and keep you; I will give you as a covenant for the people, a light for the nations, 7 to open the eyes that are blind, to bring out the prisoners from the dungeon, from the prison those who sit in darkness. 8 I am the LORD; that is my name; my glory I give to no other, nor my praise to carved idols. 9 Behold, the former things have come to pass, and new things I now declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them.” 10 Sing to the LORD a new song, his praise from the end of the earth, you who go down to the sea, and all that fills it, the coastlands and their inhabitants. 11 Let the desert and its cities lift up their voice, the villages that Kedar inhabits; let the habitants of Sela sing for joy, let them shout from the top of the mountains. 12 Let them give glory to the LORD, and declare his praise in the coastlands. 13 The LORD goes out like a mighty man, like a man of war he stirs up his zeal; he cries out, he shouts aloud, he shows himself mighty against his foes. (emphasis mine)
By including this passage in their footnotes, it’s almost as if the professors were trying to prove Muhammad was lying because Isaiah’s prophecy is directly quoted by the Apostle Matthew in relation to Jesus, while also confirming the inclusion of the Gentiles into the promises Jehovah God made to the Jews.
Matthew 12:15-21 (ESV) 15 Jesus, aware of this, withdrew from there. And many followed him, and he healed them all 16 and ordered them not to make him known. 17 This was to fulfill what was spoken by the prophet Isaiah: 18 “Behold, my servant whom I have chosen, my beloved with whom my soul is well pleased. I will put my Spirit upon him, and he will proclaim justice to the Gentiles. 19 He will not quarrel or cry aloud, nor will anyone hear his voice in the streets; 20 a bruised reed he will not break, and a smoldering wick he will not quench, until he brings justice to victory; 21 and in his name the Gentiles will hope.” (emphasis mine)
What about Habakkuk 3:3-4?
Habakkuk 3:3-4 (ESV) 3 God came from Teman, and the Holy One from Mount Paran. Selah His splendor covered the heavens, and the earth was full of his praise. 4 His brightness was like the light; rays flashed from his hand; and there he veiled his power. (emphasis mine)
This is another odd insertion. As previously stated, the professors don’t elaborate in their footnotes regarding this passage, so I can only surmise – as highlighted – that this is included to show the “Holy One”, which they may think refers to Muhammad, is from Mount Paran, which Islamic tradition associates with Mecca. That is too much to address here, but from a similar passage found in Deuteronomy, it’s apparent Sinai, Seir, and Paran are in the same vicinity, which is in northern Saudi Arabia today.
Deuteronomy 33:1-2 (ESV) 1 This is the blessing with which Moses the man of God blessed the people of Israel before his death. 2 He said, “The LORD came from Sinai and dawned from Seir upon us; he shone forth from Mount Paran; he came from the ten thousands of holy ones, with flaming fire at his right hand.
More than just the geographic references, notice the “Holy One” in Habakkuk is capitalized, meaning it’s a reference to Jehovah God, as confirmed in the passage from Deuteronomy 33. It is not a reference to Muhammad.
What is less obvious, but I have written about extensively in the I AM series, is that Jehovah God in the Hebrew scriptures is actually Jesus operating on behalf of God the Father. As confirmation, the passage below from Jude sums it up nicely, using the same imagery as Deuteronomy 33.
Jude 1:4-5, 14-15 (ESV) 4 For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ. 5 Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Jesus, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe. … 14 It was also about these that Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord comes with ten thousands of his holy ones, 15 to execute judgment on all and to convict all the ungodly of all their deeds of ungodliness that they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things that ungodly sinners have spoken against him.” (emphasis mine)
Now, let’s move on to the professors’ references to John 14 and 16. According to Islamic teaching, Jesus’ reference to “another Helper” (Comforter in the King James) is supposed to be a reference to Muhammad. To get to the truth, we need to understand the original text. The original Greek text interpreted “Helper” is παράκλητος (paraklētos), which is used five times in the Christian scriptures.
Paraklētos is translated once as advocate in 1 John 2:1-2.
1 John 2:1-2 (ESV) 1 My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous. 2 He is the propitiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world. (emphasis mine)
In this passage, notice the word advocate is not capitalized, indicating it is not in reference to deity. It is simply a term used to describe Jesus’ role, acting as our advocate, the mediator between God the Father and mankind.
As it relates to the professors’ claims, Paraklētos is translated four times as Helper (Comforter in the King James): John 16:7, John 15:26, John 14:26, and John 14:16. In addition, please notice the word Helper is (1) capitalized to signify a reference to deity, and (2) clearly in reference to the Holy Spirit and Spirit of truth.
John 16:7-15 (ESV) 7 Nevertheless, I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Helper will not come to you. But if I go, I will send him to you. 8 And when he comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: 9 concerning sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father, and you will see me no longer; 11 concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world is judged. 12 “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. 13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. 14 He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. 15 All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you. (emphasis mine)
John 15:26-27 (ESV) 26 “But when the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness about me. 27 And you also will bear witness, because you have been with me from the beginning. (emphasis mine)
John 14:26 (ESV) But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, he will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I have said to you. (emphasis mine)
Notice the consistent thread in these passages. Jesus is sending the Helper (Spirit of truth – 16:13 and 15:26 above; 14:17 below, and Holy Spirit – 14:26 above), asking from the Father, who subsequently sends Him on behalf of Jesus. And, the Holy Spirit fulfills a specific role, one of which is to prompt Jesus’ followers to remember everything Jesus said, such as, this gem from a few verses earlier in John 14.
John 14:6-7 (ESV) 6 Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. 7 If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.”
While you ponder Jesus’ declaration that He is the only way to gain access to God the Father in the greater context of His declaration to send the Holy Spirit, let’s return to the final reference to Helper, which is also found in John 14.
John 14:15-21 (ESV) 15 “If you love me, you will keep my commandments. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, 17 even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you. 18 “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you. 19 Yet a little while and the world will see me no more, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live. 20 In that day you will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you. 21 Whoever has my commandments and keeps them, he it is who loves me. And he who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him and manifest myself to him.” (emphasis mine)
In this passage, please note what Jesus said about the Helper, which is the Spirit of truth. At the moment Jesus was speaking with His disciples, the Spirit was dwelling with them (v.17) but would later indwell them.
Now, ask yourself a few questions. Did Jesus send Muhammad? No, according to the Qur’an, Muhammad was sent by Allah (2:151; 4:79). Did Muhammad come from the Father? No, according to the Qur’an, Allah has no partners (4:116) or children (4:171), despite repeated references to Allah saying “we” and “us.” Most importantly, was Muhammad present while Jesus was speaking, or has he ever indwelt anyone? No, and no.
If the references to the Spirit of truth or Holy Spirit were really referring to Muhammad, as Islamic scholars teach, that would mean Peter was filled with Muhammad in Acts 4:8 above, yet Peter clearly stated that Jesus was the only means of salvation. No, the Spirit of truth and Holy Spirit are both referring to the third manifestation of God: God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit.
Almost immediately after Jesus’ death and resurrection, He appeared to His disciples and fulfilled His promise by breathing the Holy Spirit (The Helper/Comforter) into His disciples.
John 20:19-22 (ESV) 19 On the evening of that day, the first day of the week, the doors being locked where the disciples were for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.” 20 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples were glad when they saw the Lord. 21 Jesus said to them again, “Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, even so I am sending you.” 22 And when he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit.” (emphasis mine)
As previously referenced, the indwelling of the Holy Spirit is the fulfillment of the prophecy declared by Jeremiah.
Jeremiah 31:31-33 (ESV) 31 “Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah, 32 not like the covenant that I made with their fathers on the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, my covenant that they broke, though I was their husband, declares the LORD. 33 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the LORD: I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they shall be my people.” (emphasis mine)
Harkening back to the passage quoted earlier from Jude, please notice the context of the New Covenant declared by Jehovah God, the one who took the house of Israel “by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt.” Jude declared that was Jesus. Now revisit John 14:15 and 21 above. Jeremiah says Jehovah God will write His law within the hearts of the house of Israel, while Jesus specifically talks about keeping His commandments as He promises the indwelling of the Spirit of truth. The law given to Moses by Jehovah God is the law (commandments) given by Jesus!
Properly understanding the greater biblical context of the references used by the esteemed Islamic professors to “prove” sura 7:157-158 is accurate, there is no way an intellectually honest person can deny their references apply to Jesus and His promise of the Holy Spirit, not Muhammad. Muhammad was a fraud, and it is proven repeatedly in the Qur’an itself.
Jesus paid the ultimate price to provide reconciliation between God the Father and man. His free gift of reconciliation is available to every Muslim today by simply believing He is Who He said He is and repenting (turning away) from a life of apostasy and sin by rejecting the false god Allah and his false prophet Muhammad. I encourage you to take that leap of faith. Embrace Jesus for who He truly is, and then learn about him by reading everything written about Him and His promises, beginning with Genesis all the way to the book of Revelation.
For even more information, please view the videos below.