“Narrated Jabir bin Abdullah: The Prophet said, ‘War is deceit.’” —Sahih Bukhari, Book 4, Volume 52, Hadith 269
If you have ever tuned in to the Nightly News to hear a Muslim apologist claim that Islam is a “religion of peace,” right after a jihadist mass murder of Kafirs (Kafirs are non-Muslims), then welcome to the club of people who have been lied to about Islam.
“But,” you might protest, “the man on the news quoted the Koran: ‘Say: Unbelievers! I do not worship what you worship, nor do you worship what I worship. I shall never worship what you worship, nor will you ever worship what I worship. You have your own religion, and I have mine (Koran 109:1-6).’”
It is true that there are verses in the Koran that seem peaceful, like the one just quoted. But each verse has a context that often goes unexplained. The one just quoted was actually Muhammad’s response to the efforts of members of his own Quraysh tribe to reconcile with him over the issue of religion. So, Muhammad recited the Koran at them, declaring his rejection of their worship practices. Rereading the verse, given this context, will reveal it to be less kind than one might originally have thought.
However, it is also true that this verse is an early verse from Muhammad’s years in Mecca. During this time, Muhammad was trying to convert people to Islam by more peaceful means, in general. Later, upon emigrating from Mecca to Medina, Muhammad transformed himself into a warlord and began to convert people to Islam by the sword. The subsequent Koranic verses reflect this new reality, becoming more violent as a consequence. The fact that these violent verses conflicted with the earlier, more peaceful, ones meant that there were, essentially, two Korans—a more peaceful Meccan Koran and a more violent Medinan Koran. Therefore, a rule for Koranic interpretation was needed. Thus, the principle of naskh—or abrogation—was introduced.
The Principle of Abrogation
The Principle of Naskh—or Abrogation—means that the later verses of the Medinan Koran abrogate, or cancel out, the earlier Meccan verses. Within this hierarchy, the later the verse, the more weight it carries. This is why Muslims can quote Koran 106:1-6 on the news, then go to mosque and quote the Verse of the Sword (Koran 9:5): “Then, when the sacred months have passed, slay the idolaters wherever ye find them, and take them [captive], and besiege them, and prepare for them each ambush. But if they repent and establish worship and pay the poor-due, then leave their way free. Lo! Allah is Forgiving, Merciful.” The Verse of the Sword comes later than the verse where Muhammad says, “You have your own religion, and I have mine,” as does Koran 8:12: “Allah revealed His will to the angels, saying: ‘I shall be with you. Give courage to the believers. I shall cast terror into the hearts of the infidels. Strike off their heads, strike off the very tips of their fingers!’”
“But wait!” you exclaim, “that makes no sense. How can Koran 8:12 and Koran 9:5 come later than Koran 109:1-6?” This is a perceptive question, and one that many are wont to ask. The answer involves Uthman, the Third Caliph. It was he who collected together every known version of the Koran in order to have it standardized. After this was done, it is interesting to note, he had all of the original copies burned.
Reordering the Koran
Under Uthman, not only was the Koran standardized, but the order of its surahs—or chapters—was changed. During the reigns of the first two Caliphs, the Koran existed as a set of surahs presented in chronological order; but under Uthman all of this changed. The Koran was reordered starting with the longest chapter and ending with the shortest. This is comparable to taking a novel like Moby Dick and reading the longest chapter first, the second longest chapter second, and so on. This reordering renders the Koran almost unintelligible, unless you have a key to the correct order of the surahs, which you might then be able to read concurrently with the Sira—or the Biography—of Muhammad, in order to provide yourself with the ordered set of events in Muhammad’s life that the chapters of a chronological Koran would correspond to. The good news is that the correct order of surahs is known. So, I provide their correct chronological order to you by means of a link.
It is worth mentioning that the first surah, or chapter, of the Koran is Surah 96; this marks the beginning of Muhammad’s career in Mecca, where he preached from 613 to 622. The 87th surah written is actually Surah 2, and it is with this 87th Koranic chapter that Muhammad’s time in Medina as a warlord commenced. While in Medina, from 622 until his death in 632, Muhammad prosecuted conversion by assassination of his political enemies and by armed conquest, forcing Kafirs to convert at sword-point or to submit to a 50% tax.
To begin serious study of the Koran, one thing that can help is to purchase Bill Warner’s A Simple Koran, published by the Center for the Study of Political Islam. The book can be bought at CSPI Publishing. This Koran is presented in chronological order and is blended with biological details from Muhammad’s life, in order to give the proper context to the chapters. After reading this Koran, it will be much easier to comprehend the standard issue that is available in most bookstores and Islamic cultural centers.
Dualism Becomes Thematic
Most Kafirs are unaware of the dualism that exists within the Koran, which results in such a plethora of possibilities for deceit in the quoting of it. But dualism is thematic throughout Islam. In an ideological apartheid-based world with little or no integrity, where even the Koran cannot escape being divided in twain, there is no equality to be found between the two halves of any whole. One half must always submit to the other half, just as Meccan Koranic verses must always submit to the Medinan ones. And this suits the Islamic worldview just fine. For when it comes to Islam, in the end, it is all about submission.
The views expressed in this opinion article are solely those of their author and are not necessarily either shared or endorsed by EagleRising.com