We often offer silent or audible prayers, asking for help from our Creator, for succor from our problems, for blessings on our loved ones, and for forgiveness for our mistakes. We also – unfortunately less often – thank Him for our sustenance and surroundings, our families and abilities.
We communicate with God, and we may perceive the conversation as one-sided since we receive no spoken or written response. But what if the Almighty Creator of the heavens and earth did answer you – did send you a spoken or written response? What would He say? Would it be one word? A 20-minute speech? A letter? Or an entire book?
In the month of Ramadan, 1450 years ago, God sent us a message. It is the Quran, the Speech of God, revealed through the angel Gabriel to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), who dictated it so it could be transcribed for all of humanity. It is a direct message for you and me, and all humankind. In fact, many verses of the Quran are addressed to “O People!” or “O Mankind!” These are general verses for every living soul.
While some verses are addressed particularly to believers, in fact, the whole Quran is a message for each of us. The Quran is the only divinely revealed scripture that has remained intact in its original language throughout the centuries, being widely available until today. It has also been translated in virtually every language across the globe.
So what did God say in this book to us from Him? Following are a few key verses: “O mankind, worship your Lord, who created you and those before you, that you may become righteous. [He] who made for you the earth a bed [spread out] and the sky a ceiling and sent down from the sky rain, and brought forth thereby fruits as provision for you. So do not attribute to Allah equals while you know [that there is nothing similar to Him].” (2:21-22)
“O People! Remember the favor of Allah upon you. Is there any creator other than Allah who provides for you from the Heaven and the Earth? There is no deity except Him, so how are they turned away? If they deny you (O Muhammad) so were messengers denied before you. To God all affairs are returned (for decision).” (35:3-4) “O People! God’s promise is true, so do not let the worldly life turn you away and do not let the devil deceive you. Indeed, Satan is an enemy to you; so take him as an enemy. He only invites his party to be among the companions of the Blaze.” (35:5-6).
“This (Message) is a declaration to (all) people as well as a guidance and instruction for God-fearing people” (3:138). Say, [O Muhammad], “If ye do love Allah, Follow me: Allah will love you and forgive you your sins: For Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (3:31) “There has certainly been for you in the Messenger of Allah an excellent pattern for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Last Day and [who] remembers Allah often.” (33:21)
It is really miraculous that our Creator has answered our prayers with an entire book dedicated to us, and sent us a messenger to guide our way in applying its teachings. After such a grand gesture, it is only polite to take the time to read it! If we truly want God to answer hear our prayers and answer our call, we must also heed His words and answer His call. If you would like a translation of the Quran, contact any branch of IPC or the TIES Center.
Courtesy of the TIES Center, whose mission is to empower Kuwait’s expats through social and educational services that promote a positive and productive role in society, and to facilitate opportunities for intra- and interfaith interactions that promote social solidarity. For more information, please call 25231015/6 or e-mail: email@example.com.
by Teresa Lesher