The Prophet Moses


In Islam, Moses is loved and respected; he is both a Prophet and a Messenger.  God mentions him more than 120 times, and his story ranges across several chapters.  It is the longest and most detailed story of a prophet in the Quran and is discussed in elaborate detail.

The word Prophet (Nabi in Arabic) is derived from the word Naba, meaning news.  God’s message is revealed and the Prophet spreads the news amongst his people.  A Messenger, on the other hand, comes with a specific mission, usually to convey a new ordainment from God.  Every Messenger is a Prophet, but not every Prophet, is a Messenger.

Islam teaches that all prophets came to their people with the same proclamation, “O my people, worship God, you have no other God but Him”(Quran 11:50).  Moses called the children of Israel to worship God alone and he laid down the laws prescribed in the Torah.

“Verily, We did send down the Torah to Moses, therein was guidance and light, by which the Prophets, who submitted themselves to God’s Will, judged the Jews.  And the rabbis and the priests too judged the Jews by the Torah for to them was entrusted the protection of God’s Book, and they were witnesses thereto.” (Quran 5:44)

Quran is a book of guidance for all of humankind.  It is not a history book; however, it does contain historical information.  God asks us to reflect and contemplate on the stories of the Prophets in order that we may learn from their trials, tribulations, and triumphs.  Moses’ story contains many lessons for humankind.  God says that the account of Moses and Pharaoh in Quran is the truth.  It is a story of political intrigue and of oppression that knew no bounds.

“We recite to you some of the news of Moses and Pharaoh in truth, for a people who believe.  Verily, Pharaoh exalted himself in the land and made its people sects, weakening (oppressing) a group (i.e. Children of Israel) among them; killing their sons, and letting their females live.  Verily, he was of those who commit great sins and crimes, oppressors, tyrant.” (Quran 28:3&4)

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