Answering Islam - A Christian-Muslim dialog

Examining More of Abdullah Kunde’s Inconsistencies Pt. 1

Sam Shamoun

In this article we are going to provide further examples of Muslim apologist Abdullah Kunde’s inconsistencies that are taken from some of his debates.

The Muslim doctrine of Tauhid and Allah’s Impotence

In the rebuttal period of the debate with Samuel Green titled, God of the Old Testament: Jesus or Allah?, Kunde asserted that the doctrine of the blessed and holy Trinity limits God:

“This is why the Christian concept of God – and hopefully I can narrow this out in two minutes – actually limits God. First of all, you can’t say God is one when he is in a Trinity, okay. Because we don’t say God is one in terms of being the number one – number one like a zero can come before it and a two can come after it. We say he is absolutely unified, absolutely one, not in a numerical sense. But as soon as you say that God has three personalities, as in two comes before three and four comes after, that’s a numerical limitation, okay. You’re talking about the real number system, we’re not even talking about complex numbers, okay, it applies a limitation to God. Alright. ” (*)

He raised this same objection in another debate with Green:

“We also need to accept that it implies a limited God, a God that cannot hold the attributes of eternalness, being all-powerful, and also a unified God. Why? When we say that God is one in opposition to the Trinity, we don’t mean one in terms of the numerical one, that zero can come before it and two can come after it. We mean it in an absolute unity that is not describable in mathematical terms. And when we consider the Trinity, that actually applies a created aspect to God. You’re saying three; the number three in that two comes before it and four comes after it. There’s no way around this, it’s not a complex number. For those of you doing mathematics or science you’ll know it’s even been in the real number system, three. So you’re applying a created aspect to God, and there can absolutely be no such divine unity in that concept. Even if somebody came to you and said that God is one in the sense of the number one, that zero can come before it and two can come after it, that in itself is not even a proper unity, in terms of a godly unity. It’s very important to understand that point.” (Saviour of the World: Jesus or the Quran?)

Kunde keeps creating problems for his own theological views since if what he says here is correct then Muhammad was mistaken on several counts.

First, it is apparent that Muhammad defined Allah’s oneness numerically. This can be readily seen from the following Quranic verses:

O followers of the Book! do not exceed the limits in your religion, and do not speak (lies) against Allah, but (speak) the truth; the Messiah, Isa son of Marium is only an apostle of Allah and His Word which He communicated to Marium and a spirit from Him; believe therefore in Allah and His apostles, and say not, Three. Desist, it is better for you; Allah is only one God; far be It from His glory that He should have a son, whatever is in the heavens and whatever is in the earth is His, and Allah is sufficient for a Protector. S. 4:171 Shakir

Certainly they disbelieve who say: Surely Allah is the third (person) of the three; and there is no god but the one God, and if they desist not from what they say, a painful chastisement shall befall those among them who disbelieve. S. 5:73 Shakir

God says: 'Take not to you two gods. He is only One God; so have awe of Me.' S. 16:51 Arberry

By contrasting Allah’s unity with the alleged belief of “Christians” who supposedly claimed that God is three and the third of three, or with those who took two gods, Muhammad was obviously thinking in terms of numerical oneness here, in that zero can come before it and two can come after it.

Muhammad is reported to have also said that Allah is odd or single (witr) and actually likes odd and single numbers as a result of being an odd/single number himself:

Narrated Abu Huraira:

Allah has ninety-nine Names, i.e., one hundred minus one, and whoever believes in their meanings and acts accordingly, will enter Paradise; and Allah is Witr (one) and loves 'the Witr' (i.e., odd numbers). (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 8, Book 75, Number 419)

Abu Huraira reported Allah's Messenger as saying: There are ninety-nine names of Allah; he who commits them to memory would get into Paradise. Verily, Allah is Odd (He is one, and it is an odd number) and He loves odd numbers. And in the narration of Ibn 'Umar (the words are): "He who enumerated them." (Sahih Muslim, Book 035, Number 6475)

Abu Huraira reported Allah's Apostle as saying: Verily, there are ninety-nine names for Allah, i.e. hundred excepting one. He who enumerates them would get into Paradise. And Hammam has made this addition on the authority of Abu Huraira who reported it from Allah's Apostle that he said: "He is Odd (one) and loves odd numbers." (Sahih Muslim, Book 035, Number 6476)

Narrated Ali ibn AbuTalib:

The Prophet said: Allah is single (witr) and loves what is single, so observe the witr, you who follow the Qur'an. (Sunan Abu Dawud, Book 8, Number 1411)

No one can doubt that Muhammad is clearly likening Allah’s unity to odd or single numbers, i.e. Allah is one, which is an odd and single number. He even says that this is the reason why the Muslim god likes odd or single numbers. Apparently, had Allah been two or ten then he would have liked even and double digit numbers instead.

This comparison to the numerical system again establishes that in Muhammad’s mind Allah is numerically one in the sense that zero can come before it and two can come right after it.

Also notice how the preceding narratives from both al-Bukhari and Muslim refer to Allah having ninety-nine, or more specifically hundred minus one, names (attributes, characteristics). Here is another narration which states the same thing:

Narrated Abu Huraira:

Allah's Apostle said, "Allah has ninety-nine names, i.e. one hundred MINUS ONE, and whoever knows them will go to Paradise." (Please see Hadith No. 419 Vol. 8). (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 3, Book 50, Number 894)

Muhammad even believed that Allah divided his attribute of mercy into one hundred parts!

Narrated Abu Huraira:

I heard Allah's Apostle saying, Verily Allah created Mercy. The day He created it, He made it into one hundred parts. He withheld with Him ninety-nine parts, and sent its one part to all His creatures. Had the non-believer known of all the Mercy which is in the Hands of Allah, he would not lose hope of entering Paradise, and had the believer known of all the punishment which is present with Allah, he would not consider himself safe from the Hell-Fire." (Sahih al-Bukhari, Volume 8, Book 76, Number 476)

It is once again evident that Muhammad was thinking in terms of the actual numerical system. There is simply no way of denying this fact. Muhammad obviously believed that Allah’s attributes could be numbered since he listed them as ninety-nine, and that these could be further divided much like in the case of mercy which Allah broke down into one hundred parts.(1)

Thus, Muhammad actually thought that Allah’s attributes are numerically ninety-nine in the sense that ninety-eight can come before it and one hundred can come right after it. Since this is what Muhammad clearly believed then, according to Kunde’s logic, there must be a created aspect to the Islamic deity since he is a being composed of real numerical limitations. As such, Allah is neither eternal nor is he omnipotent.

The final problem with Kunde’s assertion is that if Allah is not a numerical one, but a UNIFIED one as he claims, then he no longer has any grounds to object to the possibility of God existing as three distinct divine Persons. After all, if God’s unified nature can be composed of a plurality of names and attributes then surely God can exist as three Divine Persons who are unified in a single essence or being. In fact, on Kunde’s view Allah can actually be an infinite number of Persons since his oneness is not constricted to or confined within a numerical system such as we find in the case of a numerical oneness.

Hence, instead of refuting the Trinity, Kunde actually provided a strong reason why God's unity in no way undermines or rules out the Biblical teaching that God exists as three eternally distinct divine Persons. Kunde's argument actually affirms that it is quite consistent with the belief in God being a unified one as opposed to a numerical one.

Do the Biblical writers ever use plural verbs and adjectives for the true God?

In the rebuttal period to the debate titled, God of the Old Testament: Jesus or Allah?, Kunde asserted that the OT never uses plural verbs or adjectives for Yahweh God:

“Samuel also spoke a little bit about the plural understanding of God, and how it’s mentioned in the OT. I think I already spoke about that and dealt with that, but I challenge any Christian to give me an example were the plural word for God is used in the OT, and then the plural verb or the plural adjective is used, okay. It’s never used, alright, unless you got some manuscript of the OT that hasn’t been discovered yet. And if you’re gonna read it that way linguistically, well then you can only have the interpretation which I gave you, which is it’s a majestic plural, okay. It’s a Semitic language device. We have the same device in Arabic, okay. So just because God says ‘Us’ and ‘We,’ it doesn’t mean that there’s more than one of him, okay. By the way, even if you wanted to go down that road grammatically, you would have to say that there is a plural to God, that there is three or more gods, okay, because Hebrew has a plural for two and it has a plural for three or more. I don’t think any Christian here is going to want to go down that road.” (*)

Kunde’s comments are brimming with errors.

First, no informed Christian believes that God’s use of plural pronouns proves “that there’s more than one of him,” e.g. that there is more than one God, since Christians are committed to the biblical revelation that there is only one eternal God (cf. Deuteronomy 6:4-5, 13; 4:35, 39; 32:39; Joshua 2:10-11; 1 Samuel 2:2; 2 Kings 5:15, 17; Psalm 86:10; Isaiah 37:16, 20; 43:10-11; 44:6-8; 45:5-6, 21-23; 46:8-11; Jeremiah 10:6; Zechariah 14:9; Malachi 2:10; John 5:44; 17:3; Romans 3:30; 1 Corinthians 8:4-6; Galatians 3:20; 4:8; 1 Thessalonians 1:9-10; 1 Timothy 1:17; 2:5; James 2:19; Jude 1:25).

Second, the use of plural verbs, adjectives, participles etc., for God would not prove that there are three or more gods. Rather, the use of such plurals would provide strong support for the Trinitarian position that the one true God exists as more than one Divine Person. Such plurals would also refute the assertion of Muslims like Kunde, as well as so-called “Biblical” Unitarians, that God is a singular Person.

Third, the plural of majesty is unattested in Biblical Hebrew, especially in respect to the use of plural verbs and adjectives. Moreover, there isn’t any good evidence that such a linguistic device was known or in use by Arab writers at Muhammad’s time. Certainly, there is no indication that the author(s) of the Quran was/were aware of it or employed it in the Muslim writing. See the following articles for the evidence:

Kunde is simply reading back into these documents a later and more recent linguistic feature in order to explain away the obvious problems that such plural verbs and adjectives create for his unitarian beliefs.

Fourth, Kunde is simply grossly mistaken when he audaciously asserts that the Hebrew Bible NEVER employs plural verbs and adjectives with plural nouns for God. The inspired Hebrew Scriptures do in fact use plural verbs, adjectives etc., for the one true God, just as the following examples prove.

The first example:

For God knows (ki yode’a elohim) that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God (ke’lohim), knowing (yoda’e) good and evil.” Genesis 3:5

The verb “knowing” is a plural participle modifying the noun Elohim. Thus, a more literal translation would read, “you will be like Gods/divine beings who know good and evil.” This is further supported by what God says later on in the same text:

“Then the Lord God said, ‘Behold, the man has become like one of US, to know good and evil. And now, lest he put out his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever”— therefore the Lord God sent him out of the garden of Eden to till the ground from which he was taken.’” Genesis 3:22-23

The second example:

“Now the whole earth had one language and few words. And as men migrated from the east, they found a plain in the land of Shinar and settled there. And they said to one another, ‘Come, let US make bricks, and burn them thoroughly.’ And they had brick for stone, and bitumen for mortar. Then they said, ‘Come, let US build ourselves a city, and a tower with its top in the heavens, and let US make a name for OURSELVES, lest WE be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth.’ And the Lord came down (wayyerred YHWH) to see the city and the tower, which the sons of men had built. And the Lord said, ‘Behold, they are one people, and they have all one language; and this is only the beginning of what they will do; and nothing that they propose to do will now be impossible for them. Come, let US go down (nerada), and there confuse (wanabala) their language, that they may not understand one another’s speech.’ So the Lord scattered (balal) them abroad from there over the face of all the earth, and they left off building the city. Therefore its name was called Babel, because there the Lord confused the language of all the earth; and from there the Lord scattered them abroad over the face of all the earth.” Genesis 11:1-9

Nerada is the plural form of yarad and nabala is the plural of balal. Here, Yahweh describes his actions of coming down and scattering the peoples by himself in the plural. Yahweh’s use of the plural (“Come, let us go down and there confuse…”) is obviously meant to parallel the language of the multitude (“Come, let us…”). The major difference between these two parties is that whereas the people at Babel consisted of a multitude of separate and distinct human beings, Yahweh, on the other hand, is a singular Being who exists as a community of divine Persons within himself.

The third example:

“And when God (Elohim) caused me to wander (hita’u) from my father's house, I said to her, ‘This is the kindness you must do me: at every place to which we come, say of me, He is my brother.’” Genesis 20:13

The verb hita’u, translated "cause to wander", is the plural of ta`ah. The text can therefore be translated as, "When Gods (Elohim), they caused me to wander from my father’s house."

The fourth example:

“and there he built an altar and called the place El-bethel, because there God (Elohim) had revealed himself (nigelu) to him when he fled from his brother.” Genesis 35:7

The verb that modifies the noun God (Elohim) is nigelu (revealed), which is plural for galah. Thus, the verse literally reads, "Gods, They revealed themselves to him."

The fifth example:

“For what great nation is there that has a god so near (Elohim qarobim) to it as the Lord our God is to us, whenever we call upon him?” Deuteronomy 4:7

The adjective qarobim is the plural form of qarob. The verse can thus be translated as, “gods who are so near.” The text is likening Yahweh to gods who are nearby their people to save and protect. The passage is basically saying that, unlike the other nations, the Israelites have been privileged to have their Gods nearby to answer them anytime they call on them.

The sixth example:

“But Joshua said to the people, ‘You are not able to serve the LORD, for he is a holy God (Elohim Qadoshim hu). He is a jealous God; he will not forgive your transgressions or your sins.’” Joshua 24:19

The word translated as “Holy” is the plural adjective qadoshim (“Holy Ones”). The passage can therefore be rendered as, “Gods, the Holy Ones is he.”

The seventh example:

“And who is like your people Israel, the one nation on earth whom God went (halaku Elohim) to redeem to be his people, making himself a name and doing for them great and awesome things by driving out before your people, whom you redeemed for yourself from Egypt, a nation and its gods?” 2 Samuel 7:23

The words, “God went,” are in the plural and literally reads, "Gods, they went to redeem."

The eighth example:

“Mankind will say, ‘Surely there is a reward for the righteous; surely there is a God (Elohim) who judges (shophetim) on earth.’” Psalm 58:11

David uses the plural shophetim, which if we were to translate it literally would say, “Gods, They judge the earth.”

The ninth example:

“I have not learned wisdom, nor have I knowledge of the Holy One (qadoshim). Who has ascended to heaven and come down? Who has gathered the wind in his fists? Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment? Who has established all the ends of the earth? What is his name, and what is his son’s name? Surely you know! Proverbs 30:3-4

Qadoshim in verse 3 is a plural adjective, and is translated as such in the NRSV:

"I have not learned wisdom, nor have I knowledge of the holy ones."

Agur speaks of how terribly ignorant he is of the Holy Ones, and then goes on to mention the incomprehensible acts of God and his Son. This basically establishes that qadoshim here is a numerical plural since Agur clearly refers to two distinct entities, e.g. God and his Son who shares in his Father’s sovereignty and incomprehensibility.

And now for our final examples:

“But none says, ‘Where is God my Maker (`osay), who gives songs in the night,’” Job 35:10

The word ‘osay is the plural participle of asa’ and literally means, "my Makers."

"Let Israel be glad in his Maker (`osayw); let the children of Zion rejoice in their King!" Psalm 149:2

The text literally says "his Makers" because ‘osayw is a plural participle.

“Remember also your Creator (bora'eyka) in the days of your youth, before the evil days come and the years draw near of which you will say, ‘I have no pleasure in them’;” Ecclesiastes 12:1

Bora'eyka is a plural participle, which is literally, “your Creators.”

"For your Maker (`osayika) is your Husband (bo`alayika), the LORD of hosts is his name; and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer, the God of the whole earth he is called." Isaiah 54:5

The word `osayik is the plural participle of asa’ and bo`alayika is the plural noun form of baal, and can therefore be read, “For your Makers are your Husbands.”

None of these references can be simply brushed aside as cases of the plural of majesty since the OT provides additional evidence that the inspired writers knew that there was more than one Divine Person responsible for creating and making all things.

For instance, the OT emphatically testifies that God used his Spirit to create and give life to the entire creation:

The Spirit of God (rucha el) has made me, and the Breath of the Almighty gives me life.” Job 33:4

By his Spirit (barucho) the heavens were made fair; his hand pierced the fleeing serpent.” Job 26:13

“As God lives, who has taken away my right, and the Almighty, who has made my soul bitter; as long as my breath is in me, and the Spirit of God (warucha eloha) is in my nostrils; my lips will not speak falsehood, and my tongue will not utter deceit.” Job 27:2-4

“If he should take back his Spirit (rucho) to himself, and gather to himself his Breath, all flesh would perish together, and man would return to dust.” Job 34:14-15

God’s Holy Spirit is also responsible for replenishing the earth and reviving or resurrecting the dead:

“For the palace will be forsaken, the populous city deserted; the hill and the watchtower will become dens for ever, a joy of wild asses, a pasture of flocks; until the Spirit (rucha) is poured upon us from on high, and the wilderness becomes a fruitful field, and the fruitful field is deemed a forest.” Isaiah 32:14-15

“When you hide your face, they are dismayed; when you take away their spirit, they die and return to their dust. When you send forth your Spirit (ruchaka), they are created; and you renew the face of the ground.” Psalm 104:29-30

“Therefore prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: My people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel. Then you, my people, will know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the LORD have spoken, and I have done it, declares the LORD.’” Ezekiel 37:12-14

Interestingly, not only do the OT writers affirm that God used his Spirit to create and fashion all things, they further testify that God also employed his Word to do so:

By the Word of the LORD the heavens were made, and all their host by the Breath/Spirit (ubarucha) of his mouth.” Psalm 33:6

What makes this all the more interesting is that the Greek version of the Hebrew Bible, known as the Septuagint (LXX), translates the phrase “by the Word of the LORD” as to logo tou kyriou. What this means is that God used his Logos to make the heavens.

Lo and behold, this is precisely what the inspired Christian Greek Scriptures teach, i.e. that it was by the Logos of God that creation was brought into being:

“But they deliberately forget that long ago by God’s word (to tou theou logo) the heavens came into being and the earth was formed out of water and by water.” 2 Peter 3:5

However, the NT takes this a step further and identifies God’s Logos as Jesus Christ, the Logos who became flesh!

“In the beginning was the Word (ho logos), and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God; all things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men… He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world knew him not… And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, full of grace and truth; we have beheld his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father.” John 1:1-4, 10, 14

Hence, Jesus is the Logos or Word whom God used to bring the entire creation into existence!

John isn’t the only inspired writer who believed that Christ was the divine Agent that the Father employed to create and sustain all things:

“He has delivered us from the dominion of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or authorities -- all things were created through him and FOR HIM. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. He is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be pre-eminent. “ Colossians 1:13-18

“In many and various ways God spoke of old to our fathers by the prophets; but in these last days he has spoken to us by a Son, whom he appointed the heir of all things, through whom also he created the ages. He is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact imprint of his substance, upholding all things by his word of power. When he had made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high… But of the Son he says, ‘Your throne, O God, is for ever and ever, the righteous scepter is the scepter of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of gladness beyond your fellows.’ And, ‘You, Lord [the Son], did found the earth in the beginning, and the heavens are the work of your hands; they will perish, but you remain; they will all grow old like a garment, like a mantle you will roll them up, and they will be changed. But you are the same, and your years will never end.’” Hebrews 1:1-3, 8-12

At the same time, however, the inspired Scriptures are equally clear that only one God created and sustains all things:

“Indeed, I know that this is true. But how can mere mortals prove their innocence before God? Though they wished to dispute with him, they could not answer him one time out of a thousand. His wisdom is profound, his power is vast. Who has resisted him and come out unscathed? He moves mountains without their knowing it and overturns them in his anger. He shakes the earth from its place and makes its pillars tremble. He speaks to the sun and it does not shine; he seals off the light of the stars. He ALONE stretches out the heavens and treads on the waves of the sea. He is the Maker of the Bear and Orion, the Pleiades and the constellations of the south. He performs wonders that cannot be fathomed, miracles that cannot be counted.” Job 9:1-10

Your hands shaped me and made me. Will you now turn and destroy me? Remember that you molded me like clay. Will you now turn me to dust again? Did you not pour me out like milk and curdle me like cheese, clothe me with skin and flesh and knit me together with bones and sinews? You gave me life and showed me kindness, and in your providence watched over my spirit.” Job 10:8-12 – Psalm 139:13-16

“Did not he who made me in the womb make them? Did not the same one form us both within our mothers?” Job 31:15

“This is what the LORD says—your Redeemer, who formed you in the womb: I am the LORD, the Maker of all things, who ALONE stretches out the heavens, who spreads out the earth BY MYSELF,” Isaiah 44:24 – cf. 40:13-28; 42:5; 45:12, 18-23; 48:13; 64:8

“Do we not all have one Father? Did not one God create us? Why do we profane the covenant of our ancestors by being unfaithful to one another?” Malachi 2:10

The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else. From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’” Acts 17:24-28

“and to make plain to everyone the administration of this mystery, which for ages past was kept hidden in God, who created all things.” Ephesians 3:9

“Jesus has been found worthy of greater honor than Moses, just as the builder of a house has greater honor than the house itself. For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything.” Hebrews 3:3-4

“You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being.” Revelation 4:11

This is precisely why the historic Christian faith has always affirmed monotheism and outright rejected tritheism. Even though the Holy Bible forces all true believers to accept that the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit as three eternally distinct divine Persons, these same inspired writings equally forbid the people of God from believing that they are three separate gods.

This concludes part one. Please proceed to the second part of the discussion.


(1) Muhammad’s statement that Allah actually created mercy raises further problems for Kunde since it again shows that Allah is imperfect and mutable. Here are a few more ahadith which reiterate the point that Allah actually created mercy, and did so on the same day he created the heavens and the earth:

Abu Huraira reported: I heard Allah's Messenger as saying: Allah CREATED mercy in one hundred parts and He retained with Him ninety-nine parts, and He has sent down upon the earth one part, and it is because of this one part that there is mutual love among the creation so much so that the animal lifts up its hoof from its young, one, fearing that it might harm it. (Sahih Muslim, Book 037, Number 6629)

Salman reported that Allah's Messenger said: Verily, Allah CREATED, on the same very day when He created the heavens and the earth, one hundred parts of mercy. Every part of mercy is coextensive with the space between the heavens. and the earth and He out of this mercy endowed one part to the earth and it is because of this that the mother shows affection to her child and even the beasts and birds show kindness to one another and when there would be the Day of Resurrection, Allah would make full (use of Mercy). (Sahih Muslim, Book 037, Number 6634)

The Quran itself testifies that Allah had to prescribe mercy for himself:

Say: Unto whom belongeth whatsoever is in the heavens and the earth? Say: Unto Allah. He hath prescribed for Himself mercy, that He may bring you all together to the Day of Resurrection whereof there is no doubt. Those who ruin their souls will not believe. 6:12 Pickthall

And when those who believe in Our revelations come unto thee, say: Peace be unto you! Your Lord hath prescribed for Himself mercy, that whoso of you doeth evil through ignorance and repenteth afterward thereof and doeth right, (for him) lo! He is Forgiving, Merciful. S. 6:54 Pickthall

Note how the late Rashad Khalifa translated these verses:

He has decreed that mercy is His attribute.” Rashad Khalifa

Your Lord has decreed that mercy is His attribute.” Khalifa

And here is how one of Islam’s greatest expositors explained Q. 6:12:

Allah states that He is the King and Owner of the heavens and earth and all of what is in them, and that He has written mercy on His Most Honorable Self. It is recorded in the Two Sahihs, that Abu Hurayrah said that the Prophet said…

<<When Allah created the creation, He wrote in a Book that He has with Him above the Throne; ‘My mercy overcomes My anger.’>> (Tafsir Ibn Kathir; bold emphasis ours)

All of these verses and ahadith clearly testify that mercy is not an eternal attribute of Allah’s; otherwise there would be no need for him to create it and prescribe it on himself if it were!

Yet that’s not all. Muhammad is also reported to have said that Allah not only ordained for himself that his mercy would trump his wrath, and even wrote that down in a book, Allah also had to impose a law on both himself and his servants not to commit oppression!

Abu Huraira reported that Allah's Messenger said: When Allah created the creation as He was upon the Throne, He put down in His Book: Verily, MY mercy predominates My wrath. (Sahih Muslim, Book 037, Number 6626)

Abu Huraira reported Allah's Messenger as saying: When Allah created the creation, He ordained for Himself and this document is with Him: Verily, MY mercy predominates My wrath. (Sahih Muslim, Book 037, Number 6628)


Abu Dharr reported Allah's Messenger as saying that he reported it from his Lord, the Exalted and Glorious: Verily I have made oppression unlawful for Me and for My servants too, so do not commit oppression. The rest of the hadith is the same. (Sahih Muslim, Book 032, Number 6247)

The foregoing raises some serious questions for Muslim apologists like Kunde to ponder over and contend with, especially since they believe that their deity is perfect and cannot change.

Why did Allah need to create mercy, or ordain for himself that his mercy would prevail over his wrath, if he were already merciful by nature?

And why did Allah have to command himself to refrain from committing oppression, in the same way that he commanded his servants not to commit it, if his nature is just and holy?

Furthermore, isn’t Allah the one who gives laws, but not subject to any law?

If so, what would it mean if Allah transgressed his own laws??

More importantly, why would Allah need to make a law to prevent himself to act oppressively?

Does this imply that oppression is innate to Allah’s nature, a strong urge in him that he needs to curb (albeit, quite unsuccessfully we might add)?

In other words, is oppression more "his true nature" and therefore, like his creatures, he needs laws to act in a better way than he would naturally if he didn’t have any law imposed on him?

Moreover, how can Allah acquire certain attributes and characteristics by creating them if he is immutable and perfect?

Wouldn’t an unchangeable deity who is self-sufficient already possess all of these qualities?

However, since Muhammad clearly taught that Allah had to create certain attributes such as mercy doesn’t this actually prove that Allah is imperfect and mutable?

After all, if Allah went from not having a specific characteristic to later acquiring it by creating it, then isn’t this clear evidence that the Muslim god experienced a change in his nature?

Doesn’t this also prove that the Islamic deity is imperfect since a perfect being would already possess every essential quality and characteristic needed to be completely self-sufficient and self-existent?

Or are we to assume that mercy and justice are not necessary and essential attributes of deity, and therefore Allah doesn’t need them?

However, if these traits are not essential then why did Allah have to acquire them later on or ordain them upon himself?

Moreover, since Muhammad’s conception of God fails Kunde’s criteria for what a deity must be like, is he therefore ready to reject Islam and discard Muhammad as a false prophet?

If Kunde is consistent then he has no other choice but to turn his back on Allah and his messenger since the Muslim deity does not match Kunde’s description of a God who is perfect and thoroughly self-sufficient.