Revealing Allah’s Partner in Praise and Honor Pt. 2

Sam Shamoun

We continue from where we previously left off.

Another way in which Allah elevated Muhammad’s fame is by bestowing on him some of his own divine names and characteristics, as well as coupling Muhammad’s name with his own:

Muhammad b. al-Muthanna – Ibn Abi ‘Adi – ‘Abd al-Rahman (that is, al-Mas‘udi) – ‘Amr b. Murrah – Abu ‘Ubaydah – Abu Musa [al-Ash‘ari]: The Messenger of God named himself to us in various ways. He said, ‘I am Muhammad [the one who is praised], Ahmad [the most praiseworthy], al-Muqaffi [the follower], al-Hashir [the last in succession], Nabi al-tawbah wa’l-rahmah [the Prophet of repentance and mercy].’" (The History of al-Tabari – The Last Years of the Prophet, [State University of New York Press (SUNY), Albany], Volume IX, pp. 155-156; underline emphasis ours)


Section 14. On Allah honouring the Prophet WITH SOME OF HIS OWN BEAUTIFUL NAMES and describing him WITH SOME OF HIS OWN SUBLIME QUALITIES

… He has preferred our Prophet Muhammad since He has adorned him with a wealth of His names in His Mighty Book and on the tongues of His ProphetsOne of His names is the Praiseworthy (al-Hamid). This means the One who is praised because He praises Himself and His slaves praise him. It also means the One who praises Himself and praises acts of obedience. The Prophet is called Muhammad and Ahmad. Muhammad means praised, and that is how his name occurs in the Zabur of David. Ahmad means the greatest of those who give praise AND THE MOST SUBLIME OF THOSE WHO ARE PRAISED. Hassan ibn Thabit indicated this when he said:

It is taken for him from His own name in order to exalt him.

The One with the Throne is praised (Mahmud) AND HE IS MUHAMMAD.

Two of Allah’s names are the Compassionate, the Merciful (ar-Ra’uf, ar-Rahim). They are similar in meaning. He calls him by them in His Book when He says, “Compassionate, merciful to the believers.” (9.128) (Qadi Iyad Ibn Musa al-Yahsubi, Kitab Ash-shifa bi ta'rif huquq al-Mustafa (Healing by the recognition of the Rights of the Chosen One), translated by Aisha Abdarrahman Bewley [Madinah Press, Inverness, Scotland, U.K., third reprint 1991, paperback], Chapter Three. On The Sound And Well-Known Traditions Related About The Immense Value Placed On Him By His Lord, His Exalted Position And His Nobility In This World And The Next, pp. 126-127; capital and bold emphasis ours)

Note that Allah himself is called Muhammad since it means the one who is praised, which certainly fits with what the Quran says concerning him. Ahmad, on the other hand, refers to the most sublime of those who are praised, which again would be an apt description of the Islamic deity as far as the Quran is concerned. And yet these are the very names that Allah gave to his so-called messenger, thereby signifying that the man Muhammad is also to be praised since Allah himself has made him the most sublime of those who is to be praised!

Hence, the names Muhammad (“the one who is praised”) and Ahmad (“the most praiseworthy”) basically prove that Allah himself wants everyone to praise and glorify Muhammad.

There is more:

Qatada said, “Allah exalted his fame in this world and the Next. There is no speaker, witness nor anyone doing the prayer who fails to say, ‘There is no god but Allah and Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah.’”

Abu Sa'id al-Khudri related that the Prophet said, “Jibril came to me and said, ‘My Lord and your Lord says, “Do you know how I have exalted your fame?”’ I said, ‘Allah and His Messenger know best.’ He said, ‘“When I am mentioned you are mentioned with Me.”’”

Ibn ‘Ata quoted a hadith qudsi saying, “I completed belief with your being mentioned with Me.” And another one which says, “I have made your mention PART OF MY MENTION so whoever mentions Me, mentions you.”

Ja'far ibn Muhammad as-Sadiq, “No one mentions you as the Messenger but that he mentions Me as the Lord.”

The fact that mention of the Prophet is directly connected to mention of Allah also shows that obedience to the Prophet is connected to obedience to Allah and his name to Allah's name. Allah says, “Obey Allah and His Messenger” (2:32) and “Believe in Allah and His Messenger.” (4:136) Allah joins them together using the conjunction wa WHICH IS THE CONJUNCTION OF PARTNERSHIP. IT IS NOT PERMITTED TO USE THIS CONJUNCTION IN CONNECTION WITH ALLAH IN THE CASE OF ANYONE EXCEPT THE PROPHET.

Hudhayfa said that the Prophet said, “None of you should say, ‘What Allah wills and (wa) so-and-so wills.’ Rather say, ‘What Allah wills.’ Then stop and say, ‘So-and-so wills.’”

Al-Khattabi said, "The Prophet has guided you to correct behaviour in putting the will of Allah before the will of others. He chose ‘then’ (thumma) which implies sequence and deference as opposed to ‘and’ (wa) WHICH IMPLIES PARTNERSHIP.”

Something similar is mentioned in another hadith. Someone was speaking in the presence of the Prophet, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, and said, “Whoever obeys Allah and His Messenger has been rightly guided, and whoever rebels against them both (joining them together by using the dual form)…” The Prophet said to him, “What a bad speaker you are! Get up! [Or he said: Get out!]

Abu Sulayman said, “He disliked the two names being joined together in that way BECAUSE IT IMPLIES EQUALITY.”… (Ibid., Part One. Allah’s great estimation of the worth of his Prophet expressed in both word and action, Chapter One. Allah’s praise of him and his great esteem for him, Section 1. Concerning praise of him and his numerous excellent qualities, pp. 7-8; capital and underline emphasis ours)


“… He coupled his name with His own name, and his pleasure with His pleasure. He made him one of the two pillars of tawhid.” (Ibid., Chapter One: Allah’s praise of his Prophet, Section 9. Concerning the marks of honour given to the Prophet in Sura al-Fath, p. 27; bold emphasis ours)


“Ibn ‘Abbas said, ‘Written on the door of the Garden is: I am Allah. There is no god but Me. Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. I will not punish anyone who says that.’” (Ibid., Chapter Three: On the sound and well-known traditions related about the immense value placed on him by his Lord, his exalted position and his nobility in this world and the next, Section 1. What has come concerning his place with his Lord, the Mighty and Majestic, his being chosen, his high renown, his being preferred, his mastery over the children of Adam, the prerogative of the ranks he was given in this world and the blessing of his excellent name, p. 90; bold emphasis ours)

Here we are told that Allah deliberately chose to use the Arabic wa, which is the conjunction of partnership and/or equality, in order to make Muhammad his partner in salvation, praise and even pleasure!

Not only is this a clear case of shirk or association, which is the one sin will Allah will never forgive,

Surely Allah does not forgive that ANYTHING should be associated with Him, and forgives what is besides that to whomsoever He pleases; and whoever associates anything with Allah, he devises indeed a great sin. S. 4:48 Shakir – cf. Q. 2:22; 4:116; 39:65

It is also a violation of Tauhid al-Uluhiyyah/Ibaadah, as well as another key element of Islamic monotheism called Tauhid al-Asma’ was-Sifat:

The Types of At-Tawhid are Three:

First: Tawhid Ar-Rububiyyah; which is singling out Allah, Glorious and Exalted is He, with creating, ownership, and control of affairs. Allah, the Mighty and Sublime, said…

<Allah id the Creator of all things> (Az-Zumar 39:62) 

And He, Exalted is He, said…

<Is there any creator other than Allah who provides for you from the sky (rain) and the earth? La ilaha illa Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He)> (Fatir 35:3)

And He, Exalted is He, said…

<Blessed is He in Whose Hand is the dominion, and He is Able to do all things> (Al-Mulk 67:1)

And He, Exalted is He, said…

<Surely, His is the Creation and Commandment. Blessed be Allah, the Lord of the ‘Alamin (mankind, Jinns and all that exists)!> (Al-A’raf 7:54)

Second: Tawhid al-Uluhiyyah; which is “singling out Allah, Glorious and Exalted is He, with worship, such that a person not take anyone along with Allah whom he worships, drawing nearer to him, as he worships Allah, Exalted is He, and draws nearer to Him.”

Third: Tawhid al-Asma’ was-Sifat; which is “singling out Allah, Glorious and Exalted is He, with what He named Himself, and He described Himself in His book, or upon the tongue of His Messenger. This is done by affirming what He affirmed, and negating what He negated, without Tahrif (distortion), nor Ta’til (denial), and without Takyif (saying “how”) nor Tamthil (likening).”

And the intent of the author here, is Tawhid al-Uluhiyyah, and it is that which the polytheists went astray whom the Prophet fought against, and it is that which made their blood, wealth, land, and homes lawful, making it lawful to take their women and children as prisoners of war. And most of what the Messengers struggled against their people with is this category of Tawhid. (Muhammad bin ‘Abdul-Wahhab, Commentary on the Three Fundamental Principles of Islam, Commentary by the virtuous Shaikh Al-‘Allamah Muhammad bin Salih Al-‘Uthaimin [Darussalam Publication and Distributors, Riyadh, Jeddah, Sharjah, Lahore, London, Houston, New York; First Edition: January, 2010], pp. 59-60)

The way a Muslim violates this branch of Tauhid is by ascribing Allah’s unique names and attributes to creatures such as Muhammad, which brings us to the next problem.

This attribution of Allah’s names to Muhammad further conflicts with the plain teaching of the Quran that there isn’t a single person who is worthy to be given the same names as Allah’s!

And thy Lord is never forgetful, Lord He of the heavens and earth and all that is between them. So serve Him, and be thou patient in His service; knowest thou any that can be named with His Name? S. 19:65 Arberry

Note how the following versions translate this text:

Lord of the Heavens and of the Earth, and of all that is between them! Worship Him, then, and abide thou steadfast in his worship. Knowest thou any other of the same name? Rodwell

"Lord of the heavens and of the earth, and of all that is between them; so worship Him, and be constant and patient in His worship: knowest thou of any who is worthy of the same Name as He?" Y. Ali

Now contrast this with the way Muhammad Asad rendered this verse:

“the Sustainer of the heavens and the earth and all that is between them! Worship, then, Him alone, and remain steadfast in His worship! Dost thou know any whose name is worthy to be mentioned side by side with His?"

However one decides to translate the Arabic of this passage, the problems still remain for the Muslims. After all, not only has the Islamic deity bestowed some of his own names on Muhammad he has also made Muhammad’s name worthy to be mentioned alongside his own! Allah even went as far as to write his name and Muhammad’s on the door of paradise, as well as on the legs of his own throne,

Al-Bayhaqi cited the following hadith in his book "Dala'il an-Nubuwwah" (Signs of Prophethood): Narrated 'Umar Ibn al-Khattab: the Prophet said: "When Adam committed the sin, he said to Allah, 'O My Lord, I ask You with reference to Muhammad to forgive me'. Allah said: 'O Adam! How did you know about Muhammad, for I have not yet created him?' Adam replied, 'O My Lord, when You created me, I looked up and saw inscribed on the legs of the Throne the words: There is no God worthy of worship except Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger. I knew that you do not attach to Your name but the name of the dearest of Your Creation.' Allah said to Adam, 'You have spoken rightly, Adam. Muhammad is the dearest of My Creation. I have forgiven you because you asked by Muhammad. AND HAD IT NOT BEEN FOR HIM, I WOULD NOT HAVE CREATED YOU.'" This hadith was narrated by al-Hakim who also classified it as sahih (authentic). Among the transmitters of this hadith is 'Abd ar-Rahman Ibn Zayd Ibn Aslam. Al-Haythami said: "This hadith was reported by at-Dabarani and in its chain of transmitters are people I do not know. Al-Hakim was therefore mistaken in classifying this hadith as sahih because he himself criticised 'Abd ar-rahman Ibn Zayd Ibn Aslam in his book ad-Du'afa, so how can he state the authenticity of the hadith after he had criticised him?!!" (Tafsir Ibn Kathir, Part 1, Surah Al-Fatiah Surah Al-Baqarah, ayat 1 to 141, Abridged by Sheikh Nasib Ar-Rafa'i [Al-Firdous Ltd., London: Second Edition 1998], p. 107, fn 10; underline and capital emphasis ours)

And even made the mentioning of both their names the twin pillars of Tauhid itself!

Islam’s problems are from over, as we shall see in the next part of our examination.