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What is the difference between a Rasool (messenger) and Nabi (prophet).

Mu' meneen Brothers and Sisters,

As Salaam Aleikum wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh.  (May Allah's Peace, Mercy and Blessings be upon all of you)

 

One of our brothers/sisters has asked this question:

Assalamu Alaykum


I know you answered this question before but im afraid that i think you might have been mistaken. If not then i am really really confused.

 

What is the difference between a Rasool (messenger) and Nabi (prophet).

 

You said : A Rasool is the appointed Messenger of Allah, who is honored by Allah Subhanah with a new Shariah or Law. A nabi is the appointed Prophet of Allah, who confirms, follows, and guides mankind to follow the Shariah brought by the Rasool before him.

But i think that verse 3:81 directly contradicts what you said and is the exact opposite. This is from Yusuf Ali`s translation of the Quran:


"Behold! Allah took the covenant of the prophets, saying: "I give you a Book and Wisdom; then comes to you a messenger, confirming what is with you; do ye believe in him and render him help." Allah said: "Do ye agree, and take this my Covenant as binding on you?" They said: "We agree." He said: "Then bear witness, and I am with you among the witnesses."


It clearly says the opposite of what you said.


Now i am really confused. i studied the Quran well and i seem to find that a prophet is the one who brings a new book. For example lets examine each prophet (sorry that i am taking long and probably boring you but this is really important for me to know)

Hud: called Rasool in 7:67

Salih: called Rasool in 7:75 and 26:143

Shuaib: called Rasool in 26:178

Moses: called Rasool in 7:104

Lut: called Rasool in 26:162 and prophet in 6:89

Nuh: called Rasool in 7:61 and prophet in 6:89

Ismail: called Rasool and prophet in 19:54

Jonah: called Rasool in 37:139 and prophet in 6:89

Elias: called Rasool in 37:123

Jesus: called Rasool in 61:6

Muhammed: called Rasool and prophet in 33:40

Zakaria, John, Ishaq, Jacob, David, Solomon, Job, Elias ,Joseph are only prophets and is said that they received the book. (6:89) Read the verses before it and come to the conclusion. Now these people no where in the Quran have been referred to as Messengers.

 

But they recieved a book?


As you can see NO WHERE IN THE QURAN ARE HUD OR SALIH REFERRED TO AS PROPHETS. THEY WERE ONLY REFERRED TO AS MESSENGERS. NO WHERE IN THE QURAN DOES IT SAY THEY RECIEVED A BOOK.


SO THAT MEANS THAT ONLY A PROPHET RECIEVES THE BOOK.


But the only thing that contradicts that theory is that Idris is only mentioned as a prophet (19:56) and not as a Rasool anywhere and he did not recieve a book. I am soo confused and i couldnt reach a conclusion to anything.


If we focus on verse 3:81 cant we come to the conclusion that there will be a messenger after Muhammed? Because he was the last prophet (to come with a book). Now somone should come to confirm the quran? How did people come to the conclusion that a messenger comes before a prophet? that contradicts verse 3:81 which states other wise?


Now i dont know why i am the only one that sees this. I am sure that i am missing something because i cant be right and the whole world wrong. Please brother correct me on the matter and tell me where i went wrong in a fully detailed manner for each prophet. Very sorry to trouble you like this. But will be very very appreciated.


Jazakallah khayr

 

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Answer:

 

Difference between rasool and nabi

In the name of Allah, We praise Him, seek His help and ask for His forgiveness. Whoever Allah guides none can misguide, and whoever He allows to fall astray, none can guide them aright. We bear witness that there is no one (no idol, no person, no grave, no prophet, no imam, no dai, nobody!) worthy of worship but Allah Alone, and we bear witness that Muhammad (saws) is His slave-servant and the seal of His Messengers.

 

Your Question: What is the difference between a Rasool (messenger) and Nabi (prophet).
The office and rank of a Rasool (Messenger) is a bigger degree and rank than a nabi (Prophet). Every rasool is a also a nabi, but every nabi is not a rasool just as every general in the army is also a soldier, but every soldier is not a general!

 

A Rasool is the appointed Messenger of Allah, who is honored by Allah Subhanah with a new Shariah or Law. A nabi is the appointed Prophet of Allah, who confirms, follows, and guides mankind to follow the Shariah brought by the Rasool before him.

 

Your Question: But i think that verse 3:81 directly contradicts what you said and is the exact opposite. This is from Yusuf Ali`s translation of the Quran:
"Behold! Allah took the covenant of the prophets, saying: "I give you a Book and Wisdom; then comes to you a messenger, confirming what is with you; do ye believe in him and render him help." Allah said: "Do ye agree, and take this my Covenant as binding on you?" They said: "We agree." He said: "Then bear witness, and I am with you among the witnesses."

It clearly says the opposite of what you said. Now i am really confused. i studied the Quran well and i seem to find that a prophet is the one who brings a new book
Dear and Beloved Brother, maybe your confusion stems from comprehending the fact that every Nabi or Prophet is given a Book from Allah, but not every Book which is given might contain a new a new Shariah or Law. Only the Prophets whose Book contains a new Shariah or law are known, recognized and called Rasools.

 

The above quoted verse of Chapter 3 Surah Ale Imraan verse 81 clearly states this fact that every Prophet (thus including every Rasool) will receive Revelations (or a Book) from their Lord. And then after them will come Messengers (Rasools) from their Lord who will confirm all the Revelations which were received before him by all the Prophets (thus including all the Rasools)!

 


Thus it has always happened that every Rasool (and even every Prophet) who came after any Prophet of Allah, confirmed the Message and Revelation of all his preceding brother Prophets; the only difference being that when a Rasool was given Revelations, these now contained a new Law or Shariah from Allah Subhanah that superceded the previous Law and Shariah.

 

Your Statement: Zakaria, John, Ishaq, Jacob, David, Solomon, Job, Elias ,Joseph are only prophets and is said that they received the book. (6:89) Read the verses before it and come to the conclusion. Now these people no where in the Quran have been referred to as Messengers. But they recieved a book?

Beloved Brother, it is a fact that every Prophet of Allah received Revelations (or a Book) from their Lord; thus if Prophets Zakariah (a.s.), Yahya (a.s.), Ishaaq (a.s), etc. received Books it does not at all imply or mean that they received a new Law or Shariah. And because they did not come with a new Law or Shairah, they were referred to as Nabis.

 

As you can see NO WHERE IN THE QURAN ARE HUD OR SALIH REFERRED TO AS PROPHETS. THEY WERE ONLY REFERRED TO AS MESSENGERS. NO WHERE IN THE QURAN DOES IT SAY THEY RECIEVED A BOOK. SO THAT MEANS THAT ONLY A PROPHET RECIEVES THE BOOK.

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 11 Surah Hud verse 57:

57 (Hud (a.s.) said to the unbelievers:) "If ye turn away, I (at least) have conveyed the Message with which I was sent to you. My Lord will make another people to succeed you and you will not harm Him in the least. For my Lord hath care and watch over all things."

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 7 Surah Aaraf verse 69 (part)

69 (Hud (a.s.:) said) "Do ye wonder that there hath come to you a Dhikr (Remembrance or Message) from your Lord through a man (Hud (a.s.) of your own people to warn you?

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 7 Surah Aaraaf verse 75:

75 The leaders of the arrogant party among his (Saleh (a.s.)) people said to those who were reckoned powerless, those among them who believe: "know ye indeed that Saleh is a Rasool from his Lord?" They said: "We do indeed believe in the Revelation which hath been sent through him."

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 54 Surah Qamar verses 23-35:

23 The Thamud (also) rejected (their) Warners.

24 For they (the disbelievers) said: "What? A man? A solitary one from among ourselves! shall we follow such a one? Truly should we then be straying in mind and mad!

25 "Is it that the Message is sent to him of all people amongst us? Nay he (Saleh (a.s.)) is a liar, an insolent one!"

 

Dear and Beloved Brother, because Saleh (a.s.) and Hud (a.s.) were Rasools (and thus also Prophets), they too like all Prophets received Revelations from their Lord. But because they were Rasools, their Revelation also contained a new Shariah or Law for their people.

 

Your Statement: SO THAT MEANS THAT ONLY A PROPHET RECIEVES THE BOOK.
In light of the clear guidance of the Holy Quran, every Prophet of Allah Subhanah received Revelations from their Lord; and these Revelations when documented took the form of a Book. The only difference between the Revelations or the Book of a Nabi (Prophet) and the Revelations or Book of a Rasool (Messenger) is that the Revelations of a Rasool (Messenger) would contain a new Law and Shariah which would supercede the previously followed Shariah.

 

Your Question: But the only thing that contradicts that theory is that Idris is only mentioned as a prophet (19:56) and not as a Rasool anywhere and he did not recieve a book. I am soo confused and i couldnt reach a conclusion to anything.
Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 2 Surah Baqarah verse 136:

136 Say ye: "We believe in Allah and the Revelation given to us and to Abraham, Isma`il, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and that given to Moses, and Jesus, and that given to (all) Nabeen (Prophets) from their Lord; we make no difference between one and another of them and we bow to Allah (in Islam)."

 

Prophet Idris (a.s.) was indeed a true Prophet of the Lord, and like all other Prophets, he too received Revelations and thus a Book from His Lord to guide his people.

 

Your Statement: If we focus on verse 3:81 cant we come to the conclusion that there will be a messenger after Muhammed? Because he was the last prophet (to come with a book). Now somone should come to confirm the quran?

Dear and Beloved Brother in Islam, this absolutely false and baseless theory that a Messenger needs to come after the Last and Final Prophet and Messenger, Mohammed ar-Rasool Allah (saws) to confirm the Quran is precisely what the founder of the Qaadiyaani sect, Ghulam Ahmad Qaadiyani, propagated and misled a multitude of people from the Straight Path. The verse 3:81 is absolutely clear and in no way whatsoever implies that there will be another Messenger after the Last and Final Messenger, Mohamed ar-Rasool Allah (saws)!

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 3 Surah Ale-Imraan verse 81:

81 Behold! Allah took the covenant of the Nabeen (Prophets) saying: "I give you a Book and Wisdom; then comes to you a Rasool (Messenger) confirming what is with you; do ye believe him and render him help." Allah said: "Do ye agree and take this My Covenant as binding on you?" They said: "We agree." He said: "Then bear witness and I am with you among the witnesses."

 

The above verse is a general statement and a declaration from Allah Subhanah to all the Noble Prophets of Allah, that when a Messenger from Him comes to them from their Lord confirming the Revelations and Books that are with them, they would believe in him and render him their help.

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 33 Surah Ahzaab verse 40:

40 Muhammad is not the father of any of your men, but (he is) the Rasool of Allah, and the Seal of the Nabeen (Prophets): and Allah has full knowledge of all things.

 

And if one had any doubts the above verse of Surah Ahzaab completely clears the matter once and for all! Allah Subhanah Declares that Mohamed (saws) is the Seal of the Prophets; had Allah Subhanah Said that Mohamed (saws) was the Seal of the Rasools, then one might have an argument that since he (saws) is not the seal of the Prophets, a Prophet may come after him. But the All-Knowing, All-Wise Lord made Mohamed (saws) the Last of the Prophets, and since every Messenger is also a Prophet, there is neither a Prophet nor a Messenger to come after the Last and Final Prophet, Mohamed ar-Rasool Allah (saws)! Besides, there is ample evidence in the authentic and established ahaadeeths of the Messenger of Allah (saws) who time and again declared that there would be neither a Prophet nor a Messenger to come after him until the end of time!

 

Your Statement: Now i dont know why i am the only one that sees this. I am sure that i am missing something because i cant be right and the whole world wrong. Please brother correct me on the matter and tell me where i went wrong in a fully detailed manner for each prophet.

Respected brother, you are not the only one to see this; every imposter who falsely claimed the status of a prophet or a messenger tried to mis-interpret this very clear verse of the Glorious Quran to justify his blasphemy and baseless claim to prophethood!

 

The main reason that might have given rise to your mis-understanding is that you have not equated and thus separated the Revelations received by the Prophets from the Book that they received from their Lord; whereas the Revelations that every Prophet received when collected, would constitute a Book from their Lord, just as all the Revelations revealed on the Last and Final Prophet and Messenger, Mohamed ar-Rasool Allah (saws) when collected constitute the Glorious Quran.

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 3 Surah Ale-Imraan verse 81:

81 Behold! Allah took the covenant of the Nabeen (Prophets) saying: "I give you a Book and Wisdom; then comes to you a Rasool (Messenger) confirming what is with you; do ye believe him and render him help." Allah said: "Do ye agree and take this My Covenant as binding on you?" They said: "We agree." He said: "Then bear witness and I am with you among the witnesses."

 

Ref: Behold! Allah took the covenant of the Nabeen (Prophets) saying: "I give you a Book and Wisdom;

The above Statement of Allah clearly Declares that every Prophet (and because every Messenger is also a Prophet, every Prophet and every Messenger) receives Revelations and thus a Book from their Lord.

 

Ref: then comes to you a Rasool (Messenger) confirming what is with you

Because every Rasool (Messenger) is bestowed with a new Law and Shariah from their Lord, it is their duty to confirm the Revelations (or Book) of all the Prophets (thus including Messengers) that came before them; and time and again it has been declared in the Glorious Quran that the Last and Final Revelation or Book revealed on the Last and Final Prophet (and thus Messenger), ie: the Al-Quran confirms all the Scriptures received before it.

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 10 Surah Yunus verse 37:

37 This Qur'an is not such as can be produced by other than Allah; on the contrary it is a confirmation of (Revelations) that went before it and a fuller explanation of the Book wherein there is no doubt, from the Lord of the Worlds.

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 35 Surah Fatir verse 31:

31 That which We have revealed to thee (O Mohamed (saws)) of the Book (Al-Quran) is the Truth confirming what was (Revealed) before it: for Allah is assuredly with respect to his servants well acquainted and fully-Observant.

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 3 Surah Ale-Imran verse 3:

3 It is He (Allah) Who sent down to thee (O Mohamed (saws)) in Truth the Book (Al-Quran), confirming what went before it

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 4 Surah Nisaa verse 47:

47 O ye people of the Book! Believe in what We have (now) Revealed (the Al-Quran) confirming what was (already) with you before We change the face and fame of some (of you) beyond all recognition and turn them hindwards or curse them as We cursed the Sabbath-breakers: for the decision of Allah must be carried out.

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 5 Surah Maidah verse 48:

48 To thee (O Mohamed (saws)) We sent the Scripture (Al-Quran) in Truth confirming the Scriptures that came before it and guarding it in safety

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 37 Surah Saafaat verses 36-37:

36 And say: "What! shall we give up our gods for the sake of a Poet possessed?"

37 Nay! He (Mohamed (saws)) has come with the (very) Truth and he confirms (the Revelations of all) the Messengers (before Him).

 

Allah Says in the Holy Quran Chapter 6 Surah Anaam verse 92:

92 And this (Al-Quran) is a Book which We have Revealed bringing blessings and confirming (the Revelations) which came before it: that thou (O Mohamed (saws)) mayest warn the Mother of Cities (Makkah) and all around her. Those who believe in the Hereafter believe in this (Quran) and they are constant in guarding their prayers.

 

If one trusts, obeys, and follows the guidance and commands of Allah and His Messenger (saws), one can be assured of never ever being misled; but if one believes, obeys and follows any other guidance, other than that of Allah and His Messenger (saws), one can be assured of being led astray.

 

Whatever written of Truth and benefit is only due to Allahs Assistance and Guidance, and whatever of error is of me alone. Allah Alone Knows Best and He is the Only Source of Strength.

 

 

Your brother and well wisher in Islam,

 

Burhan

 

 


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