This is a continuation of a multi-post article. You can read the first post here. This is also part of a larger series called "The Koran from a Christian perspective." You can find other posts in this series here.Muslims hold the Koran to be unique and prized above all other books. Their reverence for the Koran goes far beyond that which any other religion has for its sacred texts. Muslims, who hold the Jewish and Christian texts in honor, see the Koran as a book that stands apart from them and one that requires special handling and treatment. The Koran itself requires that those who copy and preserve it be noble and those who handle it be pure.
"No indeed; it [the Koran] is a Reminder [warning] (and whoso wills, shall remember it) upon pages high-honoured, uplifted [exalted], purified, by the hands of scribes noble [honored], pious [righteous]." (Koran 80:11-15)
"it is surely a noble [honorable] Koran in a hidden [preserved] Book [let] none but the purified shall touch [it], a sending down [revelation] from the Lord of all Being [the Worlds]." (Koran 56:76-77)There are many reasons for this reverence, one being their believe concerning the origin of the book and their belief that the Koran is an exact, word-for-word, copy of the master book in heaven which is also written in Arabic. The Koran says this of its origin,
"By the Clear Book, behold, We have made it an Arabic Koran; haply you will [that ye may] understand and behold, it is in the Essence of the Book [a transcript of the archetypical Book], with [kept by] Us; sublime [lofty] indeed, wise [filled with wisdom]." (Koran 43:2-3)During Muhammad's first revelation, Gabriel speaks to him of the Pen that is in heaven.
"Recite: In the Name of thy Lord who created, created Man of [from] a blood-clot. Recite: And thy Lord is the Most Generous, who taught by the Pen, taught Man that he knew not." (Koran 96:1-5)When asked about this Pen, Muhammad replied,
"The first thing God created was the pen. He created the tablet and said to the pen: 'Write!' And the pen answered: 'What shall I write?' He said: 'Write My knowledge of My creation till the day of resurrection.' Then the pen traced what had been ordained." (Muhammad, his life based on the earliest sources)This archetypal book, this copy of the Koran in heaven written by the Pen, is refereed to in subsequent revelations as "a glorious recitation (qur'an) on an inviolable tablet and as the mother of the book" (Muhammad, his life based on the earliest sources)
This belief that the Koran is a literal, word-for-word, copy of the original Arabic book written by the Pen in heaven seems quite fanciful. For nearly four thousand years, God hid the knowledge of this book from mankind. No where in the Jewish or Christian texts does the existence of such a book find evidence, nor is there existence of the Pen that write it or the Tablets upon which it was written. Similarly, this Mother of the Book would have had to be written in Arabic for the Koran to be a word-for-word copy of the book. No where in the Jewish or Christian texts is it alluded to that the official language in heaven is Arabic, or that there is even language as we know it in heaven. Why would God write a book in a language that would not exist for nearly four thousand years? For four thousand years God was revealing Himself to mankind and in all that time He never did it in Arabic! Even if heaven did have an official language, I would have assumed it to be Hebrew since the Jews were God's "chosen people" (Isaiah 43:20) and those though whom salvation was to come. I personally cannot and do not believe there is such a Mother Book and, if the existence of a Mother Book is to be disbelieved, then so is the Koran which claims its origin from such a questionable book.
More to come...