Answering Islam - A Christian-Muslim dialog

Satan: A Co-Occupier of Allah’s Throne or Allah in Disguise?

Sam Shamoun 

The Quran mentions Allah’s throne quite often, especially in relation to his authority or sovereignty over creation:

He it is Who created the heavens and the earth in six Days; then He mounted the Throne. He knoweth all that entereth the earth and all that emergeth therefrom and all that cometh down from the sky and all that ascendeth therein; and He is with you wheresoever ye may be. And Allah is Seer of what ye do. To Him belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth: and all affairs are referred back to Allah. S. 57:4-5

Allah is also said to be the Lord/Possessor of the mighty/glorious throne or throne of glory:

Say: 'Who is the Lord of the seven heavens and the Lord of the mighty Throne?' S. 23:86

Exalted be ALLAH, the True King. There is no god but HE, the Lord of the Glorious Throne. S. 23:116 Sher Ali – cf. 43:82; 85:15

The Quran further states that eight angels bear or carry Allah’s throne:

Those who bear the Throne, and those round about it proclaim the praise of their Lord, and believe in Him, and they ask forgiveness for those who believe: 'Our Lord, Thou embracest every thing in mercy and knowledge; therefore forgive those who have repented, and follow Thy way, and guard them against the chastisement of Hell. S. 40:7

and the angels shall stand upon its borders, and upon that day eight shall carry above them the Throne of thy Lord. S. 69:17

However, the most interesting depiction of the throne is that it is located upon water:

And He it is Who created the heavens and the earth in six Days - and His Throne was upon the water - that He might try you, which of you is best in conduct. ... S. 11:7

The allegedly sound reports also testify that Allah’s throne is situated upon the water:

Narrated Imran bin Husain:
I went to the Prophet and tied my she-camel at the gate. The people of Bani Tamim came to the Prophet who said "O Bani Tamim! Accept the good tidings." They said twice, 'You have given us the good tidings, now give us something" Then some Yemenites came to him and he said, "Accept the good tidings, O people of Yemen, for Bani Tamim refused them." They said, "We accept it, O Allah's Apostle! We have come to ask you about this matter (i.e. the start of creations)." He said, "First of all, there was nothing but Allah, and (then He created His Throne). His throne was over the water, and He wrote everything in the Book (in the Heaven) and created the Heavens and the Earth." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 4, Book 54, Number 414)


Narrated Abu Huraira:
Allah's Apostle said, "Allah said, 'Spend (O man), and I shall spend on you." He also said, "Allah's Hand is full, and (its fullness) is not affected by the continuous spending night and day." He also said, "Do you see what He has spent since He created the Heavens and the Earth? Nevertheless, what is in His Hand is not decreased, and His Throne was over the water; and in His Hand there is the balance (of justice) whereby He raises and lowers (people)." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 6, Book 60, Number 206)

The reason why this happens to be the most fascinating aspect of Allah’s throne is because, according to the same so-called authentic ahadith, Satan’s throne is also located upon the water!

Jabir reported: I heard Allah's Messenger (way peace be upon him) as saying: The throne of Iblis is upon the ocean and he sends detachments (to different parts) in order to put people to trial and the most important figure in his eyes is one who is most notorious in sowing the seed of dissension. (Sahih Muslim, Book 039, Number 6754)


Jabir reported that Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: Iblis places his throne upon water; he then sends detachments (for creating dissension); the nearer to him in tank are those who are most notorious in creating dissension. One of them comes and says: I did so and so. And he says: You have done nothing. Then one amongst them comes and says: I did not spare so and so until I sowed the seed of discord between a husband and a wife. The Satan goes near him and says: You have done well. A'mash said: He then embraces him. (Sahih Muslim, Book 039, Number 6755)


Abu Sa'id reported that Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) met him (Ibn Sayyad) and so did Abu Bakr and 'Umar on some of the roads of Medina. Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: Do you bear testimony to the fact that I am the Messenger of Allah? Thereupon he said: Do you bear testimony to the fact that I am the messenger of Allah? Thereupon Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: I affirm my faith in Allah and in His Angels and in His Books, and what do you see? He said: I see the throne over water. Whereupon Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: You see the throne of Iblis upon the water, and what else do you see? He said: I see two truthfuls and a liar or two liars and one truthful. Thereupon Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: Leave him He has been confounded. (Sahih Muslim, Book 041, Number 6992)

With the foregoing in view does this mean that Satan is a co-occupant of Allah’s throne, that he and Allah share the same throne? In fact, can a Muslim cite a supposed authentic text stating that there are other individuals besides Allah and Satan that have a throne situated upon the water?

Or should we interpret this to mean that Satan expelled Allah from his throne upon the water and now has control over creation?

Worse still, should we actually see this as further proof that the Allah of Islam is actually the Devil masquerading as god? It seems so, especially when we take into consideration that the Quran boasts that Allah is the best deceiver/schemer/trickster/conniver/cheat of them all and that he perverts/misguides/corrupts people in the same way that Satan does (*; *; *)

According to the Holy Bible this description of Allah as a corrupter/perverter who is the best deceiver perfectly fits Satan, who is said to be the father of lies and the deceiver of the whole world:

“You belong to your father, the devil, and you want to carry out your father's desire. He was a murderer from the beginning, not holding to the truth, for there is no truth in him. When he lies, he speaks his native language, for he is a liar and the father of lies.” John 8:44

"And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world--he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him." Revelation 12:9

Such a depiction, however, is unbefitting to the majesty and glory of the holy and pure God of the true prophets of Israel and the blessed apostles of the risen and immortal Lord Jesus Christ:

“He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he.” Deuteronomy 32:4

“Therefore, hear me, you men of understanding: far be it from God that he should do wickedness, and from the Almighty that he should do wrong.” Job 34:10

“to declare that the LORD is upright; he is my rock, and there is no unrighteousness in him.” Psalm 92:15

Your eyes are too pure to look on evil; you cannot tolerate wrong. Why then do you tolerate the treacherous? Why are you silent while the wicked swallow up those more righteous than themselves?” Habakkuk 1:13

“He who speaks from himself seeks his own glory; but He who is seeking the glory of the One who sent Him, He is true, and there is no unrighteousness in Him.” John 7:18

“This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.” 1 John 1:5

In conclusion we would like to say that no matter how a Muslim seeks to reconcile these statements this fact remains crystal clear - Muslims you have a major problem on your hands!