HAZRAT MIRZA GHULAM AHMAD(as), THE PROMISED MESSIAH AND IMAM MAHDI
The Promised Messiah(as) wrote over 80 books in Arabic, Urdu, and Persian. Excerpts of his collected works have been translated into English and organised by topic. The Review of Religions is pleased to present these excerpts as part of a monthly feature. Here, the Promised Messiah(as) elaborates on how the Holy Qur’an is a source of guidance for the righteous.
Extracts from The Essence of Islam, Vol. I, 395-404. This is the fourth part of a multi-part series.
Guidance for the Righteous
Some Brahmu Samajists object that if perfect understanding depends upon the Qur’an, then why did God not publish it in all countries and in all places of population, ancient and modern, and why did He deprive millions of His creatures of His perfect understanding and of true doctrine?
The reply is that this objection derives from shortsightedness …. If the light of the sun does not reach certain dark places or if some people shut their eyes like an owl on beholding the sun, would this mean that the sun has not been created by God? If the rain does not fall on some dry land or a saline area does not get the benefit of it, then would it follow that rain is the work of man? To meet such doubts God Almighty has made it clear in the Holy Qur’an that the guidance of Divine revelation is not meant for every temperament, but is meant for those pure temperaments that possess the quality of righteousness. It is only such people who take advantage of the perfect guidance of revelation and are benefited by it. Divine revelation reaches them in any case. In this context, we draw attention to the following verses of the Holy Qur’an:
One should ponder over the first verse, namely:
It will be observed how nicely, beautifully and succinctly God Almighty has furnished the answer to the objection raised. First reference is made to the Author of the Holy Qur’an and His Grandeur and Majesty are indicated. It is said:
I am Allah, Who knows best. That is to say, I, Who Am All-Knowing and All-Wise, Whose knowledge is not matched by the knowledge of anyone else, am revealing this Book.
Then the greatness of the Holy Qur’an is referred to and it is said:
This is that Book. That is to say, a grand and sublime Book which derives from Divine knowledge. It is established with regard to it that its source and spring is the Eternal Being of the All-Wise.
By using the word “that”, which denotes distance, God Almighty has indicated that this Book derives from the knowledge of that Being with high attributes, Who is Matchless and Peerless and Whose perfect knowledge and profound mysteries are very far from the limits of human sight.
Then the praiseworthiness of its form and structure are described by saying:
The body of the Qur’an is so well reasoned that there is no room left in it for any kind of doubt; meaning that, unlike other books, it is not a mere tale or story, but is comprehensive of conclusive arguments and reasoning, and sets forth clear proofs of its objects and purposes, and is in itself a miracle which operates like a sharp sword for the removal of doubts and suspicions, and does not leave the matter of the recognition of God at the conjectural stage of He should be, but carries the matter to the certainty of, He is.
Despite the grandeur of these purposes which are greatly concerned with effect and reform, it proceeds to define the fourth purpose which is its ultimate object, which is the provision of guidance for the righteous. It announces that it is:
This Book has been revealed for the guidance of those who, on account of their pure interiors, sane reason, firm intelligence, eagerness for search of truth, right motives, would, in the end, arrive at a high degree of faith and recognition of God and perfect righteousness.
In other words, those about whom God knows that their nature is suited to this guidance and they can make progress in true insights, will in the end be guided by this Book; and this Book would reach them and God would enable them to follow the right path before their death. Thus, God Almighty has clearly stated that those who in the knowledge of God are worthy of being guided and possess the quality of righteousness by their nature will surely be guided through the Holy Qur’an.
The succeeding verses set forth the details and pronounce that:
who in the knowledge of God are likely to believe will all gradually believe,
and only those will be left outside concerning whom God knows that they will
not embrace Islam and, whether they are warned or not, they will not believe,
or will not arrive at the perfect stage of righteousness and understanding.[viii]
[i] Alif Lam Mim I am Allah, the All-Knowing. This is a perfect Book; there is no doubt in it; it is a guidance for the righteous, Who believe in the unseen and observe Prayer, and spend out of what We have provided for them; And who believe in that which has been revealed to thee, and in that which was revealed before thee, and they have firm faith in what is yet to come. It is they who follow the guidance of their Lord and it is they who shall prosper. Those who have disbelieved—it being equal to them whether thou warn them or warn them not—they will not believe. Allah has set a seal on their hearts and their ears, and over their eyes is a covering; and for them is a great punishment.— The Holy Qur’an, 2:2- 8 [Publisher]
[ii] ‘He it is Who has raised among the unlettered people a Messenger from among themselves who recites unto them His Signs, and purifies them, and teaches them the Book and wisdom, although they had been, before, in manifest misguidance. And among others from among them who have not yet joined them. He is the Mighty, the Wise. That is Allah’s Grace; He bestows it on whom He pleases; and Allah is the Master of immense grace.’— The Holy Qur’an, 62:3-5 [Publisher]
[iii] ‘Alif Lam Mim [I am Allah, the All-Knowing]. This is a perfect Book; there is no doubt in it; it is a guidance for the righteous.’— The Holy Qur’an, 2:2-3 [Publisher]
[iv] The Holy Qur’an, 2:2
[v] The Holy Qur’an, 2:3
[vi] The Holy Qur’an, 2:3
[vii] The Holy Qur’an, 2:3
[viii] The Holy Qur’an, 2:4-8