All praise be to Allah and peace and blessings be on the Prophet Muhammadﷺ.The Prophet Muhammadﷺ being the universal messenger and not only for the Arabs is a standard theme in the Quran. However, some Non Muslims have attempted to prove that his message is only for the Arabs and not for the whole of humanity. This claim is absurd and is without evidence as it can be seen by reading the Quran from cover to cover and by not cherry picking the Verses of the Quran to suit their evangelical and missionary needs. We can analyze this from various perspectives. Some of them are mentioned below.
Every Messenger has been sent with the Language of his People
The Fact of the Matter is that the Messenger of Allah r was an Arab messenger since the people to whom he was sent were Arabs and as Allah says in the Quran, “And we have sent no messenger but with the language of his people, that he might make (the message) clear for them.” (14:4). This clearly shows that every messenger has been sent to the people with the language of the people, or else people would have not understood the message and would have said how come a message has come which is in a foreign tongue?
This has been confirmed to us in this verse, “And if We had made it a non-Arabic Qur’an, they would have said, “Why are its verses not explained in detail [in our language]? Is it a foreign [recitation] and an Arab [messenger]?” Say, “It is, for those who believe a guidance and cure.” And those who do not believe – in their ears is deafness, and it is upon them blindness. Those are being called from a distant place.” (41:44)
Allah is Lord of the Worlds and not only the Lord of the Arabs
Allah has never claimed in the Quran that he is Lord of only the Arabs, the constant message given in the Quran is that Allah is Lord of the Worlds. The first of the Quran itself is a proof for this, where a person is taught to say, that “All praise be to the Lord of Worlds” (1:1). Moreover, countless times in the Quran Allah has referred himself as the Lord of the heavens and the Earth.
If the Message of the Prophetﷺ was only to the Arabs, then why does Allah refer himself to as the Lord of the Worlds and not the Lord of the Arabs?
Language is just a vehicle for the Message
Allah says in the Quran, “Verily, We made it a Quran in Arabic so that you may be able to understand” (43:3). The Arabic Language is just a means to deliver the Message. It is unreasonable to expect that the message should be delivered in every language of the World. Hence, what better language than the language of the people so that the message is clearly explained to the people, and there is left no doubt about the universality of the message.
Its faulty logic to state, that the message of the Arabic Quran cannot be delivered to the Non-Arabs. Since, the Prophetﷺ himself sent various letters with Quranic Arabic, with translators,etc warning the Heraclius, Chosroes II, Negus, etc. Moreover, many Sahaba, like Salman al Farsi, Bilal , etc were Non Arabs from their lineage and no one objected for their accepting of Islam. Since, the Prophetﷺ who was an Arab, the Quran had to be in Arabic for the people to understand. This does not restrict his mission to only the Arab people, rather the Arabic Quran can be interpreted in every language so that at least the basic message can be understood. This is what has been followed since the early generations, when Islam had spread far and wide, to Persia and other countries, who were Non-Arabs.
Evidence from the Hadeeth.
The Prophet(pbuh) said, “I have been given five things which were not given to anyone else before me:
- Allah made me victorious by awe, (by His frightening my enemies) for a distance of one month’s journey.
- The earth has been made for me (and for my followers) a place for praying and a thing to perform Tayammum, therefore anyone of my followers can pray wherever the time of a prayer is due.
- The booty has been made Halal (lawful) for me yet it was not lawful for anyone else before me.
- I have been given the right of intercession (on the Day of Resurrection).
- Every Prophet used to be sent to his nation only but I have been sent to all mankind.
( Saheeh Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 7, Number 331)
Hence, we can gauge that the Message of the Prophetﷺ was never intended to be only for Arabs, and he was a universal messenger, although his message was sent in Arabic. This was done to the earlier messengers too. Their message was also in the language of the people; however the message was not intended to be universal. To use the language as the only criterion for judging that the message is local and not universal is incorrect. We need to see the contents of the message, i.e the Quran and the Hadeeth, which clearly state that the Message is Universal.
The Miracle of the Quran
All the Miracles of the previous messengers have come to an end, with the end of their time. However, the Quran with its eloquence and its extra ordinary style will continue to be a Miracle till the end of time. Anyone can learn the Arabic language and comprehend its miracle, since it can be understood with a sound intellect. However, to understand the basic meaning, one need not learn the Arabic Language, and the Quran is being interpreted in various languages of the World and many people are embracing Islam just by reading the interpretations of the meanings of the Quran in their language.
The Miracle of the Quran is not only in the words but in its style, eloquence, meanings and in fact it can be said that everything about the Quran is miraculous in nature.
Historically, the message being in the Arabic Language has never been a concern; rather it has helped Islam to spread far across the world. Wherever the Message of Islam spread, the words of Islam resounded with what the Innate Fitrah, which Allah created us with. Hence, we can see that Muslims are from almost every corner of the world with almost all languages. The common Arabic language has helped them to pray together and any person travelling anywhere in the World, need to have problems in offering Salah, since everyone, wherever he might be offers Salah in Arabic. Hence, when Islam spread far and wide, especially during the time of Umar (may Allah be pleased with him), the message of Islam has been translated and delivered to those people who did not speak Arabic earlier.
Moreover, the effect that Arabic had on them was so profound, that everyone started speaking Arabic and they their original languages totally vanished. Now, most of the Arab countries, which can be seen in the Map, were not Arab before, but when Islam came to them, they adopted Arabic as their native language.
The Message of the Quran, is to help the individual realize his true objective and purpose in life, to Worship Allah and to attain eternal Paradise. To consider language as a constraint, especially in today’s age of technology, is incorrect, since we have all the tools available at our disposal to understand the message of Islam and to comprehend it. All languages are a blessing from Allah, as Allah says, “And among His Signs is the creation of the heavens and the earth, and the variations in your languages and your colors: verily in that are Signs for those who know”(30:22). Hence, it can be concluded by the verse of the Quran:
And we have sent You (O Muhammad ) not but as a Mercy for the ‘Alamîn (mankind, jinns and All that exists). (21:107)
May Allah guide us to what is the best and all blessings be on the Prophet Muhammadr .And Allah Knows best.
(n.d.). Retrieved from http://islamqa.info/en/147329