THE SACRIFICE OF ABRAHAM; WAS IT ISAAC OR ISMAEL By Sanusi Olawale Ibn AbdulWasiu


The father of faith; Abraham (Ibrahim), in years only the Creator of the world can accurately state displayed an unmatched obedience to Allah by attempting to sacrifice his only son as at then for Allah, in fulfilment to the promise he made. The lesson derived from the incidence is enough for preaching. Till today it is not a fallacy to say, Prophet Abraham is among the most important revered figure among the Monotheistic religions in the world. He was indeed an embodiment of piety and faith.

As I mentioned above, the importance of the incidence, and the lessons derived therein is what benefits us, whomever Abraham had used is not in anyway adding to the significance of the story. More reason Allah, in His infinite wisdom didn’t mention the name of the son Abraham used. But however, there is a great conflict between Islam and Christianity, as Muslims believe the son Abraham sacrificed was Ismael. Christianity stands on the other side; the Bible mentions Isaac.

But who truly was sacrificed? This question will not be answered until we get to the root of the story. Truly, foods are fetched from the top of the pot, but in this case, we shall start from the bottom of the pot.
Those who claim Isaac was sacrificed has only one reason to believe so, apart from the fact that Bible mentioned the name, that Ismael wasn’t a legitimate child of Abraham. I would not subscribe to such shallow thinking. It gives stain to the personality of the father of faith. The Bible clearly gives details of how Abraham married Hagar,

Genesis 16:3
And Sarai Abram’s wife took Hagar her maid the Egyptian, after Abram had dwelt ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to her husband Abram to be his wife.

So how did Hagar become an illegitimate wife that bore an illegitimate child? If marrying an outcast is what makes Hagar an illegitimate, then what can we say of Sarai who was the daughter of Abraham’s father?

Genesis 20:12
And yet indeed she is my sister; she is the daughter of my father, but not the daughter of my mother; and she became my wife

By societal standard, Hagar was more legal than Sarai.

Allah himself gave name to Ismael, so how he could be an illegitimate child is what calls for serious caution.

Genesis 16:11
And the angel of the Lord said unto her, Behold, thou art with child and shalt bear a son, and shalt call his name Ishmael; because the Lord hath heard thy affliction

Long before both Ishmael and Isaac were born, Allah made a covenant with Abraham:

Genesis 15:18
In the same day the Lord made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates

Doesn’t the greater part of Arabia lie between the Nile and the Euphrates, where all the seeds of Ismael settled at a later date?

Genesis 21:13 :
“And also of the son of the bondwoman will I make a nation, because he is thy seed.

If Ismael was called the seed of Abraham, then indeed he is legitimate.

But the Bible mentions that Isaac was to be sacrificed.

Genesis 22:2
And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.

Isaac was born years after Ismael, so how could Isaac be the only son while Ismael was alive?
The covenant between God, Abraham, and his son Ismael was made and sealed when Ismael was supposed to be sacrificed. On the very same day, Abraham, Ismael, and all the men of Abraham’s household were circumcised. At that time, Isaac had not even born:

Genesis 17:24-27:
“And Abraham was ninety years old and nine when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin. And Ishmael his son was thirteen years old, when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin. In the selfsame day was Abraham circumcised, and Ishmael his son. And all the men of his house, born in the house, and bought with money of the stranger, were circumcised with him.”

A year later, Isaac was born and circumcised when he was eight days old:

Genesis 21:4-5:
“And Abraham circumcised his son Isaac being eight days old, as God had commanded him. And Abraham was an hundred years old, when his son Isaac was born unto him.”

So when the covenant was made and sealed (circumcision and sacrifice) Abraham was ninety-nine and Ismael was thirteen. Isaac was born a year later, when Abraham was one hundred years old.

It is not a fallacy, Kedar is a descendent of Ismael (Genesis 25:13), and Ismael is the the base for the Family Tree of Prophet Muhammad through Kedar.The followers of Ismael, Prophet Muhammad and all Muslims, remain faithful until today to this covenant of circumcision. In their five daily prayers, Muslims include the praise of Abraham and his followers with the praise of Muhammad and his followers. And these traditions will continue until the end of the world.

It is mentioned in the Bible “thine only son Isaac.” Shouldn’t it be “thine only son Ismael,”? when Ishmael was thirteen years old and Isaac had not even been born? When Isaac was born, Abraham had two sons.

Because Of unwarranted bias, favouritism, or devotion to one’s own particular group, cause, or idea the name of Ismael was changed to Isaac in all of Genesis 22.
But God has proven to be powerful and wonderful indeed, He preserved the word “only” to show us what it should have been.The words “I will multiply thy seed” in Genesis22:17 was applied earlier to Ismael in Genesis16:10. Genesis 21:13 also mentioned Ismael as Abraham’s seed. Is it not logical to conclude that the whole of Genesis 22 is applicable to Ismael then? “I will make him a great nation” has been repeated twice for Ismael in Genesis17:20 and Genesis16:10.

Okay. Let’s all agree Sarai hated Hagar and his son. The Jewish tradition also hated them both.The book of Deuteronomy has the verdict:

Deuteronomy 21:15-17:
“If a man have two wives, one beloved and another hated, and they have born him children, both the beloved and the hated; and if the firstborn son be hers that was hated: Then it shall be, when he maketh his sons to inherit that which he hash, that he may not make the son of the beloved firstborn before the son of the hated, which is indeed the firstborn: But he shall acknowledge the son of the hated for the firstborn, by giving him a double portion of all that he hash: for he is the beginning of the strength; the right of the firstborn is his.”

Islam does not deny God’s blessings on Isaac and his descendants, but the son of promise is Ismael, from whom arose Muhammad as the seal of the prophets.

But is there any prove that these verse (Genesis 22:2) has been tampered with? Corruption in the Bible is very easy to prove. Jeremiah 8:8 till tomorrow remains a great blow to the said word of God.

The Encyclopaedia Judaica says:
“It is related that a renowned traditionalist of Jewish origin, from the Qurayza tribe, and another Jewish scholar, who converted to Islam, told that Caliph Omar Ibn ‘Abd al-Aziz (717-20) that the Jews were well informed that Ismail was the one who was bound, but that they concealed this out of jealousy. The Muslim legend also adds details of Hajar, the mother of Ismail. After Abraham drove her and her son out, she wandered between the hills of al-Safa and al-Marwa(in the vicinity of Mecca)in search for water. At that time the waters of the spring Zemzem began to flow. Her acts became the basis for the hallowed custom of Muslims during the Hajj.
(Encyclopaedia Judaica,Volume 9, Encyclopaedia Judaica Jerusalem, pp. 82 (Under’Ishmael’).

Furthermore, Encyclopaedia Judaica reads:
Another proof of our speech[i.e., that sacrificed was Ishmael(P)]is reported by Ibn Ishaaq: “Muhammad Ibn Ka’b narrated that ‘Umar Ibn ‘Abd al-‘Aziz sent for a man who had been a Jew then converted to Islam and showed signs of true Islam.[Before his conversion], he was one of their scholars[i.e., he was a Jewish scholar]So he[i.e., ‘Umar]asked him: which son did Abraham(P)sacrifice? He replied: ‘It is Ishmael(P). By God, O Commander of the Believers, the Jews know that but they envy you – the Arabs.’

So it is clear, chauvinism made the Jews replaced the name of Ismael to that of Isaac. But they have been disgraced by the Lord of the World by making them forget that the word “ONLY” ought to be changed too.

Jeremiah 8:8
‘How can you say, “We are wise, for we have the law of the Lord,” when actually the lying pen of the scribes has handled it falsely?

Qur’an 2:79
So woe to those who write the”scripture” with their own hands, then say, “This is from Allah,” in order to exchange it for a small price. Woe to them for what their hands have written and woe to them for what they earn.

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