Did God say His name was AHYEH or YAHWEH?

Did God say His name was  AHYH (ahayah) or YHWH (Yahawah)?

What is The Most High [ELYOWN]’s real name?

The Jews say His name should not be pronounced and write it as the Tetragrammaton YHWH. There are some who pronounce the four-letter word Ehyeh or Ahyah (or something in between) and others who pronounce it Yahweh. The early Christian theologians ascribed the diacritic sounds of Adonay (Lord) to the consonants in YHWH, but also change the consonant sounds to JHVH and arrived at the name Jehova.

Izrah ban Yahuda wrote:

I can understand the frustration when this subject comes up for brothers coming into the knowledge of who we Bani Yisrael really are. Now before I try to answer, I must stress that

  1. Our way of thinking was different from the western Roman mind set.
  2. The Torah was written in one language; Hebrew.

There are some words in Hebrew that cannot really be translated correctly.

He then proceeded to give this Grammar Lesson:

Let us look at the account of Moses in Exodus 3:14 in the context of the following preceding and following ones (Exodus 3:13 & 15) because there are a lot of clues as to the constuction of God’s name in the latter.

Exodus 3:13: And Mosheh said unto the Elohim, ‘Look, I am going to the sons of Israel, and I will say to them, “Elohey of your fathers hath sent me to you”; ‘and they will say to me, “What is His name?”  ‘What will I say to them?’

 ויאמר משׁה אל־האלהים הנה אנכי בא אל־בני ישׂראל ואמרתי להם אלהי  אבותיכם שׁלחני אליכם ואמרו־לי מה־שׁמו מה אמר אלהם

 Clearly, Moses is willing to do the task required of him.  However, he would be more comfortable with the name of He Who was speaking to him so he could comfortably tell them Who He is.

Exodus 3:14: And Elohim said to Mosheh, ‘Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh’: and He said, ‘Thus shalt thou say to the sons of Israel, “Ehyeh (ahyah) hath sent me to you.”

ויאמר אלהים אל־משׁה אהיה אשׁר אהיה ויאמר כה תאמר לבני ישׂראל אהיה שׁלחני אליכם

Izrah ban Yahuda said at this juncture.

“We see that the name given to Moses in verse 14 is Ehyeh (Ahyah) אהיה.”

Then he says, “I find it interesting that we always see and hear other names of God, but never really ‘Ehyeh’. Yet right here in verse 14, we see the name Ehyeh (Ahyah).”

I find it interesting, too, and believe some kind of misunderstanding occurred between what Moses said to the Bani Israel and what was recorded in the Torah.  Some might say EHYH is not the tetragrammaton that was meant; that the next verse (verse 3:15) gave the TRUE name.

Did God make a mistake? I do not think so. People read in these verses the words “Elohim”, “Elohey” and “Ha-elohim”,  all referring to God and nearly every one of them they transliterate in an English text with a definite article, as in “The Elohim” or, when the definite article is there, sometimes leave the article out.

Only TWICE is the definite article used with Elohim in verses 3:13-16, yet the word for God is written in transliteration with the article for all of them but ONE, and that one has the article Ha in Hebrew. Even the author of the page I am largely quoting does it. Conversely, the Bible uses the word God without the article for all of them without distinguishing, and never the definite article when talking about Monotheistic Deity.

I propose to name Him as He names Himself, and I do not understand ‘Yahweh’ in verse 3:15 as God renaming Himself – or so I think. I think it is the rebellious and stubborn Jews whom he was sent to guide who just have to question everything Moses said, and then blame mistakes on him, that twisted it round.

However, my source suggested we examine the root of the name Eheyh. He  quoted STRONG’S HEBREW CONCORDANCE:

“The root is היה H-Y-H (hayah), pronounced haw-yaw’.

“A primitive root (compare H1933); to exist, that is, be or become, come to pass (always emphatic, and not a mere copula or auxiliary): – beacon, X altogether, be (-come, accomplished, committed, like), break, cause, come (to pass), continue, do, faint, fall, + follow, happen, X have, last, pertain, quit (one-) self, require, X use.

The Grammar Lesson

If we conjugate the verb in the first person this, is what we get: אהיה (âhyâh)

– 1st person is Eh-yah (ahyah) אהיה: I exist, I am, I shall be.

As seen in Exo 3:14, the verb eh-yah literally means I exist; as seen in Gen1:3, it means something to come to pass:

Gen 1:3 “And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.

ויאמר אלהים יהי אור ויהי־אור

– 2nd person is T-h-yah (tahyah) תהיה: you exist, you are or thou shall be, as seen in Exodus 3:16

– 3rd person is Y-h-yah יהיה : He exists, he is, or he shall be, as seen in Exodus 3:16.

A) אהיה

Ehyah (Ahyah)

One of the differences between biblical Hebrew and English is that biblical Hebrew only has two tenses: the “perfect tense” and” imperfect tense.” “Ehyah” in verse 3:14 is in the imperfect tense.

Understand that the “perfect tense” is a completed action and an “imperfect tense” is an incomplete action. These tenses are related to action. Hebrew is a very action oriented language that centres around concepts that you can see, feel, smell, and taste. Our language is based on solid functionality. But English tenses are past, present, and future which are related to time.

Therefore, when you translate a Hebrew verb into English, you have to translate the verb from a language based on action into a language based on time, which brings  obvious difficulties. And it doesn’t always work out the right way. This is the main problem with translations.

As stated above the “imperfect tense” is an incomplete action. This could be an action that was started but not finished, or an action that has yet to be started. So “Ehyah” can be translated as “I exist” (English Present Simple tense) or “I will exist” (English Future Simple Tense). We can also render it as “I am” (using the verb “to be”).

When students are reading the Bible in Hebrew and they understand these concepts, the translation problem does not exist because they are reading the Torah and Tanakh with a Hebrew mind and they are thinking in Hebrew concepts. However, if the student’s mindset is western, and he or she thinks in English, this Oriental Hebrew verb needs to be converted into an English vernacular in a way that makes Occidental sense. My source continues:

Look at the phrase in verse 14:

Ehyah Asher Ehyah 

So we have Ehyah and Asher. Asher is a relative pronoun, and can be translated as: which, who, what, because, or that. The context is the determining factor in how it is translated. We can translate this as,

  1. I will exist because I will exist
  2. I exist because I exist
  3. I am who I am
  4. I will be who I will be
  5. I am what exists

When a translator is translating the text, he has to choose from these five translations which would be the best translation to put in the text.

However, because the Hebrew language is such a dynamic language, there is NO one right way to render this. Essentially ALL of these translations are right. In Hebrew, one word can mean 20 different things in English, and in English, one word can be said 20 different ways in Hebrew. It is about context of usage.”

Actually, the concept he describes if all these meanings he ascribes are meant to work together is quite easy to present in the English tense system. I would translate it (given this guidance) “I am Who will have always existed” or “I exist because I will have always existed.” (i.e. no beginning and no ending). He continues:

“Now let look at Exodus 3:15

B) הוה


– 1st person is e-h-wah: “I exist” or “I am”.

– 2nd person is T-h-wah: “you exist” or “you are”.

– 3rd person is Y-h-wah: “he exists” or “he is”. Notice that this is in the third person.

Exodus 3:15 And Elohim said Again to Mosheh, Thus, you will say to the sons of Israel, Yahwah Elohey of your fathers, Elohey of Abraham, Elohey of Isaac, and Elohey of Jacob, hath sent me to you: this is my name for ever, and this is my memorial unto all generations.

 ׃ ויאמר עוד אלהים אל־משׁה כה־תאמר אל־בני ישׂראל יהוה אלהי אבתיכם אלהי אברהם אלהי יצחק ואלהי יעקב שׁלחני אליכם זה־שׁמי לעלם וזה זכרי לדר דר

So Elohey gives his name again, but this time it is different (יהוה) YHWH. The two names YHWH and AHYH are related to one another.

First there is the verb היה Hayah, and now here is the Hebrew verb הוה Hawah. It is identical in meaning and usage. Therefore, let us look at the word Hawah. 

It is important to know that all Hebrew names are words with meaning.

A good example would be Sarah, who was Abraham’s wife. Sarah, in Hebrew, is shrah (שׂרה). The root for this is shr (שׂר) which means a head person (of any rank or class): – captain (that had rule), chief (captain), general, governor, keeper, lord, ([-task-]) master, prince, ruler. Adding the “Ha” at the end would make this a feminine word giving you Shr-Ha, a mistress that is a female noble, princess or queen.

If endings are so important, let us consider. Haw-ha is the name of the first woman, so in her case, it has a feminine meaning: “I am (female)“.

So names like, yahua, yahueh, yehovah, or Jehovah etc., mean nothing at all because they are not Hebrew words. Elyown Elohim told Moses to give His name in the 3rd person, because Moses was going speak in the 3rd person. That is, Moses (a 1st person) was going to speak to Israel (a 2nd person) about Elohey, so he would speak in (the 3rd person).”

Do you find his argument convincing? It is not so convincing to me. A Proper Name (The Name) does not change in this way. For example, 

  1. Shmiy h-r-miyah, = My name is Jeremy (hurmiya)
  2. Shmek t-r-miyah, = Your name is Jeremy (turmiya)
  3. Shmach y-r-miyah. = His name is Jeremy (yurmiya)
  4. HaShem (יִרְמְיָ֖הוּ) is ye-ra-me-ya-hu (he is aimed/caste/thrown/tossed [by] ‘O He is’)

Of course pronunciation might change due to a name’s relation to the word before it, and the vowel sound at the end may, too. But the letters of the name do not. Take the name Allah. It is written الله, but can be pronounced Illah, Ullah or Allah due to the ending sound of the word before it (the Alif is elided in pronunciation). If there is a particle before it, it stays the same (نالله, فالله, لالله, والله, and so on). Also the ending sound can be different according to the relation it has to the word following, like Allahu, Allahi, and Allaha or Illahu, Illahi, and Illaha or Ullahu, Ullahi, and Ullaha. The same spelling, but different diacritic marks.

Hence I think it actually the reason for the change from EHYEH to YAHWEH is exactly as my source tells it, but the name he is reported to have given the Iraelites was not how it was actually said by Moses. If God had not meant Moses to tell the Israelites His name was EHYEH, the Israelites, the ones who wrote the Torah, would not have known how God had said his name to Moses, only how he reported it. If God said his name was HYAH, or HWAH, I expect that was how Moses actually reported it. The name, perhaps, did not make sense as a name of a third person (God), so it got changed by the elders and scribes to the more comfortable rendering, and then (later) made forbidden to enunciate to hide the deed. Hence, now, the word HASHEM or ADONEY is substituted for the name when the Torah is recited.

Can you fancy that? God says, “Here, take my name!” “Call upon me with my name!”  “Identify me by Name!”  And then they refuse to say His name.

As a footnote: The Christians claim that Jesus gave himself the name HYH. And God (in the Quran) told Zakariya to name his son YHY. I am; He is.

The Prophet Zakariah’s son, Prophet Yahya, is said in the Quran to be a unique name, a name that no man has had before him. This is the name Allah gave to John the Baptist. If the meaning is as close to Yahwah as this analysis suggests, we have the peculiar situation where a man has a name with the same meaning as YHWH.  Odd, to say the least.

The Quran says Yahya and Eissa are very similar to one another and that Yahya is described as:

O Zakariya! We give thee good news of a son: His name shall be Yahya: on none by that name have We conferred distinction before.”

He said, “My Lord, how will I have a boy when my wife has been barren and I have reached extreme old age?”

[An angel] said, “Thus [it will be]; your Lord says, ‘It is easy for Me, for I created you before, while you were nothing.’ “

So he came out to his people from the prayer chamber and signed to them to exalt [Allah] in the morning and afternoon.

Allah said, “O Yahya, take the Scripture with determination.”

And We gave him judgement [while yet] a boy; and compassion from Us, and purity, and he was God-fearing; and dutiful to his parents, and he was not insolent or disobedient; and peace be upon him the day he was born and the day he dies and the day he is raised alive.

Eissa is described similarly, but in the first person.

[The Angel] said, “I am only the messenger of your Lord to give you [news of] a pure boy.”

She (Mar-yam) said, “How can I have a boy while no man has touched me and I have not been unchaste?”

He said, “Thus [it will be]; your Lord says, ‘It is easy for Me, and We will make him a sign to the people and a mercy from Us. And it is a matter [already] decreed.’ “

So she pointed to him. They said, “How can we speak to one who is in the cradle a child?”

[Jesus] said, “Indeed, I am the servant of Allah. He has given me the Scripture and made me a prophet. And He has made me blessed wherever I am and has enjoined upon me prayer and due charity as long as I remain alive. And [made me] dutiful to my mother, and He has not made me insolent, or unblessed. And peace is on me the day I was born and the day I will die and the day I am raised alive.”

Is that a coincidence, or what?

A Reminder for Those Conscious of Mortality

Once I wished my sister well. She had been diagnosed as suffering from cancer of the liver, and had been given less than a year to live. After chemotherapy, it was found that all the nodes had disappeared except one, and that was easily removed. A miracle! She had been cured of cancer. Naturally, I wrote to her expressing my thanks to God at her recovery and wishing her God’s protection hereon in.

I also wrote to a sibling, who was often the last to know good or bad family news, expressing my thanks to God that she was better. But what I received in reply took me aback!

I was told that becoming agnostic had made life much more relaxing and free from disadvantages when my sibling saw the self as a cosmic being rather than a brainwashed believer in the supernatural. It was explained to me that man created God, not the other way around. That is, He is man’s creation, the cosmic energy that we are all part of, whom man created in his image. In other words, my sibling did not believe in God as a person, but just as a personified form of energy.

Naturally I responded, and below are a few of my thoughts.

Among Muslims there is a school of Sufi thought that regards our existence as being a figment of God’s mind. That we are all part of God. God is in everything and ever present and we are part of His mind. I don’t subscribe to that extreme viewpoint, mind you, otherwise our lives would be the lives of mere automatons, without real conscious choice. Indeed we all experience choices, and we may have chosen different paths of the philosophy of life.

As a teenager crossing into adulthood, I believed naively that God was a created bogeyman, with origins, perhaps, in historical visits from aliens to pre-technological mankind. A bogeyman that religious institutes conspired to impose upon the masses in order to control them. Even later, when studies introduced me to Marxism, this was backed up by the vision of religion being a vehicle of ideology – a machine of the rulers and an “opiate for the masses” – tranquillizing and nullifying their feelings of alienation from their productive lives through being mere exploited cogs in creating wealth for others.

How to take control of my life? Well, exploring avenues of affective action (sorcery) or passive inward stoicism (transcendental meditation).

Eventually things came together when I began debating the power that controlled the universe with others similarly bewildered. I constructed (rather than created) a system in which I could believe – that God was not a person but a power expressed in the guiding principle that keeps the universe ordered – the laws of physics? The scientific principle? Mankind was capable not only of adapting to and using this guiding principle in good, environmentally friendly, responsible ways (good) but also to cut across natural laws and create an opposing destructive, polluting  and forced channel that defied nature (evil). By our will (towards doing good or evil) we affected the world and the universe. I felt that those who were contra nature would get their comeuppance in the end (whether in this world or the next) and that the do-gooders would get reflected good (in this world or the next).

So it is not like I have not been through doubts and changing positions in my beliefs. Islam settled all that. A very simple message. There is only one God, and we owed it to Him not to ascribe any of His qualities to anything else (lest we invest it with qualities that belong only to God). Secondly, we will be reconstructed after being dead and judged on how well we single out God (Allah) for worship. If we willingly opposed His sovereignty, then the fire awaits. If we willingly submitted to His sovereignty, then paradise awaits. And if we are somewhere in between, there may well be a period of trial, and temporary residence in the fire.

In addition to the argument above are a few cogent ideas for people to reflect on derived from what the Prophet Mohammed, may God praise him, said.

One of the reported sayings of the Prophet was: “A Christian or Jew will be a dweller in the fire unless he or she believes in Allah, His Messenger (Muhammad) and the message with which he was sent.

The message is simple, the same warning sent down with all the Messengers: ‘There is a last day, and you will be resurrected. When you are resurrected you will be judged and then sent to dwell in either the Fire or in Paradise. If you believe this and act accordingly, then you will inhabit the latter rather than the former.’

How is it to act accordingly? In another reported saying of the Prophet, he asked rhetorically what people owed to Allah, and replied: “We owe Allah that we take not any other in worship except Allah.” He then asked rhetorically what Allah owed to human beings in return, and said: “Allah owes His protection from the fire touching someone forever to the person who takes not any other in worship except Allah.

Does believing the above mean I have been brainwashed? Well, if I was brainwashed, it was from when I was a Christian; accepting Islam was simply due to the concept of deity it taught more fittingly describing Godhead than Trinity. In fact, when I was scared a man might actually be God and my judge on that day, I had serious conflicts in my breast and denied the religion that set such a one up as the one I depended on. Now that I know it is my Creator I depend on, I am much more relaxed. To me it is better to be safe than sorry. And I really cannot see any disadvantages to being a believer. Death comes to us all.

Finally, this epistle is not aimed solely at denial of being brainwashed by Islamic theological education, but also at inviting people who are conscious of mortality. God willing, it might hopefully, give pause to their thoughts about the hereafter. There is a chance for everyone to be one of those that admit His sovereignty and eschew opposition to it. That is all I am reminding people of.

Believe in God

The Name of God in the Abrahamic Religions

The name of God in Islam is ALLAH (الله), the One God (اله) (אלה). This is the name He gave us in the Quran, and these are the names, ELaH (اله), in the Chaldean, ALaHA (الها) (ܐܠܗܐ), in the Aramaic, and ILaH, ILaHA or ALLaH (اله) (אלה), (الها) (ܐܠܗܐ) (אלהא) or (الله) (ܐܠܠܗ) (אללה), in the Arabic non-Muslim scriptures as well. Arabic worshippers also use His name ALLAHUMMA (اللَهمَ) in the invocative form when praying.Even in the Hebrew Scripture the basic letters spelling out His appellation ELoHeY or ELoHYM (אלהים or אלהי) (الهيم or الهي) are nearly the same. I have given the spelling in Hebrew and both the Arabic and English transliteration, for better visual comparison between the corresponding letters in each language, and set these out in tables, below.

Table 1: Letter Values

English A/E/I L H Y M N ht/t
Aramaic ܐ ܠ ܗ ܝ ܡ ܢ ܬ
Hebrew א ל ה י ם נ ת
Arabic ا ﻪ /ﻬ ي /ﻴ م ن ة

Table 2: Transliterations

Aramaic (Syriac) ܐܠܗ ܐܠܗܐ ܐܠܗܝ
Hebrew אלה אלהי אלהים
Arabic اله الها الهي الهيم

Table 1 shows the corresponding transliterated letters used above, and Table 2 shows the names of God in Aramaic in Syriac script and Hebrew/Chaldean in the Hebrew/Nabatean alephbet with their corresponding English and Arabic transliterations. Tables 3 & 4 give the Arabic names for God or god(s) in the Classical Arabic Alifbata and their transliterations in Hebrew, in Nabatean and Syriac Chaldean/Aramaic and in the English alphabet. Both tables include words from the sayings of the Prophet as well as from the Quran. Except for ILaHiYya, the words in Table 4 exclusively describe false gods.

Table 3: Transliteration

Arabic الله اله اللّهُـمَّ الها
Aramaic ܐܠܠܗ ܐܠܗ ܐܠܠܗܡ ܐܠܗܐ
Hebrew אללה אלה אללהם אלהא

Table 4: Transliteration

English ILaHiYya ILaHaht ILaHaYN ALiHaht
Arabic  إلهيَ إلهة إلهين ألهة
Aramaic ܐܠܗܝ ܬܐܠܗ ܢܐܠܗܝ ܬܐܠܗ
Hebrew אלהי אלהת אלהינ אלהת

Allahumma, Ilah, and Ilahiyya are not strictly names. The first is the way we address God when we implore or invoke Him, and is often translated as O God’. The last is how we describe the source of inspiration, miracles or other emanations. It is often translated as ‘Divine’. ILaH is used to describe Allah when He says Your God is One God”. In other words, when referring to the One and only God, it is a word for Allah. However, when it is used to describe what is worshipped other than Allah, it means ‘false god’. Please note that ELoH and ELoHeY are exact reproductions of ILaH and ILaHiYya, whilst ELoHYM resembles ALLaHuMma in the way it is said. ELoH is also pronounced similarly to Allah.

Believing in God

When we say we believe in God, we mean we believe in Him as exclusive of other gods, wholly One. This is the same concept of God as in the Torah and the Prophets, and is even articulated in the Gospels of the New Testament too. In each of these Scriptures it is clearly spelled out.

The major commandment in the Bible

From the Torah, in Deuteronomy, Moses says:

“To you it was revealed, so that you might know that The Lord is God, and there is no one else besides Him.” (4:35)

 “You shall fear The Lord your God, and you shall serve Him, and swear by His name. You shall not go after other gods.” (6:13-14).

In the writings of the Major Prophets, Samuel said

“There is none holy as The Lord, for there is none beside You.” (1; 2:2),

and Isaiah said,

“‘You are my witnesses!’ says the Lord, and my servant whom I have chosen, ‘That you may know and believe Me, and understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, neither shall  there be  after Me. I,  even I,  am  The Lord,

and beside Me there is no savior’.”  (43:10-11).

Hosea, one of the Minor Prophets, said that God says,

“I am The Lord your God from the land of Egypt, and you shall know no god but Me, for there is no savior beside Me.”

Finally, in the Gospels, Luke and Matthew record Jesus as saying,

“You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.” (4:8 & 4:10),

and Mark records that

“God is One, and there is no other besides Him” (12:32)

The Quran gives the same message: the Prophet Muhammad, may God praise him, was told to say

“It has been revealed to me that your God is One God: whoever expects to meet his Lord, let him work righteousness, and not associate besides Him anyone in the worship of his Lord.” [Quran 18:110]

He was also informed us that

“They (the people of the book) were commanded to worship but the One God.  There is no god but  He. Exalted is He over what they associate with Him.” [Quran 9:31]

Our duty to God

So God in Islam is not some new God. He is the Deity we are all commanded to obey and adore. In the Torah and the Gospel, the same words are used to emphasize this fact. Both Moses and Jesus told the people of Israel,

“The Lord your God is One Lord, so love The Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, {all your mind} and all your strength.” (Deuteronomy 6:4-5 Mark 12:30)

Whilst the Quran informs us,

“Adore your Lord, Who created you and those who came before you, and do good so that you may learn righteousness” [Quran 2:21],

“I created not Jinns and men except to worship Me” [Quran 51:56] and

“Fall down in prostration to God and adore Him”.  [Quran 53:62]

Despite the command that we worship Him, and only Him, and despite our lowly position as His abject worshippers, God is not a distant and fierce dictator. The attribute that is most often used in the Quran is al-Rahman – the Merciful. Once, after watching a female captive searching for her baby whom she had lost in the course of the conquest of her town, the Prophet, may Allah praise him, pointed out her actions. Every time she came across a baby who had lost its mother, she picked it up and rocked it, crooning, then put it down again, seeking her flesh and blood. Then she found him, and immediately began scolding the little tyke while losing no time putting him to her breast. Then he said,

“God is more loving and kind than that mother to her baby”. [Sahih Bukhari]

Let us now take a closer look at some of the significant features of the common qualities that all three religions attribute to Him from the Islamic perspective. 

Mercy and Worldly Life

What does Divine Mercy mean in worldly life? For mankind in general, it means that He gives without stint to believer and unbeliever alike. In fact, the further one is away from Him in belief and worship, the more he gives of worldly things. This is because the one who does not fear and worship God, or frankly disbelieves His existence, or turns in worship to others beside Him, is destitute in the hereafter. The only enjoyment such a one will ever have is in this world – so Allah gives them their enjoyment now. For the believer, Devine Mercy covers him in the hereafter. Often, the closer and more adoring the believer, or the most perfect worshipper, will encounter strong tests of misfortune in this world. In fact, the humbler and more dependent one knows oneself to be before God, the more mercifully will God treat him when he is resurrected.

Everything that happens to us, whether externally impinged on us or within ourselves, is already decreed by God, and we would never have avoided it. Therefore God says,

“Do not grieve for the things you fail to get, or exult over that which  is given you,  for God does not like prideful boasting.” [Quran 57:23]

Rather, we are told that the life of this world is like unto mutual play, amusement, pomp, boasting and rivalry over wealth and heritage to us; goods and chattels that deceive one into assuming that one is from the people who have, whilst thinking the humble people, who disdain the pleasures of the world for the sake of God, are the have-nots. He likens worldly pleasure to the luscious green vegetation that results from plentiful rainfall, to the delight of the farmer who planted the seeds. Yet soon after that, the same vegetation withers and dies and turns into dry yellow remnants. It does not last. But, although God has prepared eternity in a place of punishment for those who heedlessly and greedily wallow in the life of this world, those who disdain it for the sake of God are destined for His Good Pleasure and Forgiveness.


The Mercy of Allah is balanced by His Justice. For even though God forgives any sin we commit in relation to Him, except the sin of worshipping others beside Him unto our deathbed, our trespasses against fellow human beings have to be paid for. Unless we have recompensed the victims for our trespasses against them in the world, or obtained their pardon, or paid our debt through charity if we cannot find our debtor, we have to pay for them in the only coin we will own when we are resurrected; our good deeds. And if one does worship other base beings (or images) with or instead of God, one removes oneself from the scope of His Mercy in the hereafter. He says,

“The likeness of what they (who reject faith) spend in this world is like a bitterly cold wind that struck and destroyed the harvest of a people who did wrong against themselves. God did not wrong them, but they wronged themselves.” [Quran 3:117]

He also says,

“Whatever good reaches you is from God, but whatever evil befalls you is from your own self.” [Quran 4:79].

Thus God instructs the Muslim to

“Bear patiently with what people say, and glorify the praises of your Lord before the rising of the sun and before its setting, and during some hours of the night and at the ends of the day, that you may become pleased.

And strain not your eyes in longing for the things We have given for enjoyment to various groups of them: the splendors of the life of this world by which We test them.  But the provision of your Lord is better and more lasting”. [Quran 20:130-131]

How does the Muslim, then, conceive of God? Why does he insist on worshipping none other than Him? What is so abhorrent to Him about considering God to have multiple faces and persons?

The concept of God

To a Muslim, Allah is the Almighty Creator and Sustainer of the universe, Who is similar to nothing, and nothing is comparable to Him. When the Prophet Muhammad, may Allah exalt his mention, was asked by his contemporaries about Allah, the answer came directly from Allah Himself in the form of a short chapter of the Quran, which is considered to be the essence of monotheism, or Tawhíyd.

“In the name of God, the Merciful, the Beneficent. Say (O Muhammad), He is God, who is one (entity); God, the Everlasting Refuge. He neither begets, nor has been begotten, and there is not one (other) entity comparable to Him”.  [Quran 112]

The verses of this chapter summarize the Islamic notion of Tawhíyd. He is named both Beneficent and Merciful, the major attribute that is repeated throughout the Quran. His Oneness is stressed heavily by the word Ahad, meaning exclusively One, and His independence from needs by the word Somad (everlasting refuge). Ahad signifies a single thing or entity, and often means somebody/thing or anybody/anything when used in sentences about the possible existence (or none existence) of a procured type of object. The Hebrew scripture uses the word Echad for the same concept. Somad signifies that everything depends upon, or stands in need of, Allah in order to exist. If Allah were to suspend His will from creation even for an instant, it would cease to function, or even exist. Conversely, He does not stand in need of anything from His creations. Naturally, if we stand in need of Him, we must request what we need from Him in worship. The word Ahad is used in the first and last of the four verses with the meaning ‘a single entity’.  

The verse disclaiming all kinds of reproduction emphasizes His unique nature, His eternal existence. Nothing that came into existence from Him was due to begetting, but was due to creation, and nothing that was begotten can be God, so must have been created. Finally, the fact mentioned in the last verse that there is no comparison between Allah any created beings emphatically means that the names we call Him, such as ‘The Creator’, have a unique meaning when attached to Him. ‘The Creator’, for example, has a special meaning when applied to Allah. He alone can create something from nothing, as well as create a thing from another, more basic foundation. Human beings are given the ability to do the latter, but the former belongs to Him alone.

Thus Allah is our only Lord and God Whom we must worship exclusively, and in Whose attributes we must believe, and from Whom alone we can solicit help when we are in need.

The Rights of God and man

Muhammad, may Allah praise him, once asked Mu’adh, the envoy he sent to the Christians in Najran,

“Do you know what God’s right on His worshippers is, and their right on Him is?”

He then went on to tell him,

“God’s right is that they should worship Him alone and should not worship any besides Him. And worshiper’s right on Him is that He should not punish those who worship none besides Him.”

Although this would have greatly relieved the general run of people, the Prophet asked Mu’adh not to make this morsel of information general knowledge at the time, lest the people depend on the final clause absolutely and fail to faithfully execute God’s right because of it. However, before Mu’adh died, he felt duty-bound not to hide these words, especially since the general purport of this message was already generally known when he reported them.

This idea is supported by what Allah says in the chapter of the Quran concerning women:

Verily, God does not forgive that partners be ascribed to Him; but He forgives anything else to whom He wills; whoever ascribes partners to God has devised a tremendous sin.[Quran 4:48]


Allah, then, is none other than the same one God Who brought the Children of Israel out of Egypt; Who inscribed the tablets of Moses whereon were written the criterion and commandments; Who forbade that we bow down to images and false gods; and Who created the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary.

To Him we are commanded to call, with good words and fine manners. We should never vilify what others worship to their face, lest they inadvertently react by taking God’s name in vain. Rather, He told us to tell the Jews, Christians and others ‘of the Book’

“Say: ‘We believe in that which has been revealed unto us and revealed unto you; our God and your God is One, and unto Him we surrender.'” [Quran 29:46]

God is forgiving about anything but worshipping others beside Him, and He will reward those who, without any reservations, believe in Him alone with the one thing everyone yearns for: everlasting felicity in Paradise.

Why This Blog?


I thought it is about time I expressed myself as a Muslim. Yet this Muslim has roots in one of the sects of the religions that preceded Islam from the Abrahamic foundations of faith – Roman Catholicism. In a way, I want to establish what to me are the fundamentals of my faith – yet my fundamentalist views are not “Wahhabi” or “Salafi” in that sense of extreme and exclusive sectarian division, that “Holier than Thou” fundamentalism that claims “I am of the saved sect” and “if you don’t agree with me, I do not associate myself with you (because you are one of the losers).”

Indeed, my fundamentalism precludes following blindly those that know more just because they know more. Has more knowledge ever made the knower less hidebound in his culture and beliefs? In fact, the one who admits a paucity of knowledge is often the one who sees to the heart of Truth.

What do I know?

Allah is the Unique God, there is no partner God to Him. Everything belongs to Him, and all praise is due to Him, and He decrees everything that exists.

La ilaha ill Allah. There is no God except Allah.

When you believe this so many things ensue.

The Scriptures are True

The first is the Verity of the Quran, since the message it predominately conveys is precisely the above. There is a verse in Surah Qasas speaking of people with “the Book” (the Bible) who on hearing the Quran recited say, “We believe in it. And why should we not believe in it when it is from our Lord. And even before it we had submitted (we were Muslims).” Of course this shows that “The Book” is also from Allah, so the true believer believes that the Bible contains revelation from the Originator, too.

Allah’s Messengers are True

The second thing that ensues from the above is that the Messengers who conveyed the revelations to mankind are also true – the prophets of God from Adam to Muhammad, peace be upon them all.

The Angels and Holy Spirit are True

Third, the Quran tells us that the prophets were supported by the Holy Spirit and visited  by angels – that the angels and Holy Spirit conveyed the Message from Allah to the Prophets. The Old and New Testament tell us the same thing. So, by believing in Allah, His Book and His Messengers, We must also believe in His Angels.

The Afterlife (The Resurrection, Judgment, and Heaven & Hell) is True

Fourthly, as well as the message that there is but One God we are to worship, the main task the prophets had was to warn us that we will be resurrected after our death and judged by our deeds before God. As a result of the Judgment the people will be divided into two main groups: the Paradise-bound and the Hell-bound. If we believe in this warning, then we must believe in the Resurrection, the Judgment and Heaven and Hell.

Allah’s Decree is True

Finally, in order to be judged, there must be transgression. Transgression of what? you might ask: Transgression of fitrah, the innocent and pure natural propensity to worship our Creator. It is Allah that Decrees our existence and self, and what is before us and after us. He Makes the rules and Rules creation; whatever He says goes – and no one has the authority to decree a thing except by His permission. Those who listen carefully, and rule and judge and give guidance in His name by His Decree, include those He chose – His Messengers – and those His Messengers delegated.

So believe in Allah, the One True God, and in His Book, His Angels, His Messengers, The Afterlife, and Allah’s Decree. These are the fundamentals of faith.