Prophets of Allah – Jesus: Prophet of Allah sent to the lost tribes of Israel


“And We did raise among every people a Messenger”

Jalees Ahmad, Al Hakam

Jesusas, the son of Mary, was a prophet of Allah the Almighty. The Holy Quran states that Jesusas was a prophet to the People of Israel. He spiritually revived the dead and was the last Israelite prophet. He also delivered the glad tidings of the coming of the greatest prophet, the Holy Prophet Muhammadsa, the chosen one. Jesusas was granted a high spiritual status and came to fulfil the prophecies of the Old Testament. As a man of God, he preached, like all other prophets, the Unity of Allah to his people.

Jesusas was born without the agency of a father. The Holy Quran affirms that Jesusas was born without the agency of a father. (Surah Aal-e-‘Imran, Ch.3: V.48)

This birth is believed by Ahmadi Muslims to be miraculous, but not supernatural. Jesusas is known as Ibn Maryam – meaning son of Mary – having been born without a male parent, he naturally became known primarily through his mother.

The Messiah, Jesusas, had a complexion that was described as red, possessed curly hair, and had a broad chest. These physical attributes provide a glimpse into his appearance as described by the Holy Prophetsa who saw Jesusas on the night of the spiritual journey of Mi‘raj. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitab Ahadith al-Anbiya, Hadith 3438)

Mary: The blessed mother of Jesusas and the glad tidings

The Holy Quran has shed light on numerous facts about prophets and the events surrounding their lives. Unfortunately, other scriptures have depicted certain prophets as engaging in actions that are inconsistent with the grandeur expected of a prophet. However, the Holy Quran has dispelled this notion and cleared prophets of any indecent or immoral acts. Similarly, the Holy Quran has provided details about Mary that are absent from earlier scriptures.

With regards to the news of Jesus’ birth, the Holy Quran recounts that an angel conveyed the glad tidings to Mary about “the Messiah, Jesusas, son of Mary,” who would be honoured in this world and the hereafter. Upon receiving this news, Mary was filled with surprise and was informed that such is the way of Allah. (Surah Aal-e-‘Imran, Ch.3: V.46)

The meaning of Jesusas speaking “in the cradle and when of middle age”

The following verse of Surah Aal-e-‘Imran goes on to say:

وَيُکَلِّمُ النَّاسَ فِي الۡمَہۡدِ وَکَہۡلًا وَّمِنَ الصّٰلِحِيۡنَ

“‘And he shall speak to the people in the cradle and when of middle age, and he shall be of the righteous.’” (Surah Aal-e-`Imran, Ch.3: V.47)

Many misconceptions have arisen from misunderstanding this verse. The expression “he shall speak” signifies the ability to communicate wise words, as there is nothing remarkable about simply uttering random words. Further, the passage speaking of the cradle and middle age implies two distinct periods: childhood and adulthood, during which he would speak words of wisdom. Hinting that he would not die young but would live to a good ripe age.

 “The Quranic reference to the two distinct periods of Jesus’ life may also be taken to hint that his speaking in the latter period was to be of a different nature from that in the former. In the latter period, he was to speak to men as a Prophet of God. Thus, the glad tidings given to Mary consisted in the fact that Jesusas was not only destined to be an intelligent child but was also to live to a ripe age as a righteous servant of God.” (Five Volume Commentary, Vol.2, p. 492-493)

Hazrat Ahmadas has stated that this does not imply that Jesusas started speaking immediately after birth or at the age of two or four months. Rather, it signifies that he started speaking around the age of two or four years, as this is when children typically engage in playful activities in their cribs. It is not surprising for a child of that age to speak. (Tafsir Hazrat Masih-e-Maudas, Vol. 3, p. 47)

The “act of speaking in the cradle signifies speaking words of wisdom and piety in childhood. This sort of speaking on the part of Jesusas reflected great credit on his mother, who, herself being wise and pious, brought him up as a wise and pious child.” (Five Volume Commentary, Vol. 2, 827)

The Messiah’s birth

The Christian world commonly refers to 25 December as the birth date of Jesusas, the Messiah. Of course, this is a debatable topic; however, we need not indulge ourselves in it too deeply, as much has been written about it already. (

The Holy Quran states that Jesusas was born at a time when dates had become ripe. “And shake towards thyself the trunk of the palm-tree; it will cause fresh ripe dates to fall upon thee.” (Surah Maryam, Ch.19: V. 26)

When the Messiah was born, Mary was commanded to keep a fast of silence:

فَقُوۡلِيۡۤ اِنِّيۡ نَذَرۡتُ لِلرَّحۡمٰنِ صَوۡمًا فَلَنۡ اُکَلِّمَ الۡيَوۡمَ اِنۡسِيًّا

“say, ‘I have vowed a fast to the Gracious God; I will therefore not speak this day to any human being.’” (Surah Maryam, Ch.19: V. 27)

As it happened in the case of Prophet Zachariahas, Mary was told to limit her speech as much as possible and focus on remembering God. We know that she did not completely stop talking since the phrase فقولي indicates this. When looked at, keeping the historicity of the birth of Jesusas and the story in mind, this command aimed to prevent unnecessary questions from any passer-by about the newborn, allowing Mary to conserve her energy and dedicate more time to the remembrance of God.

“It appears from the Gospels that after Jesus’as birth at Bethlehem, in pursuance of a Divine command, Joseph had taken him and Mary to Egypt where they lived for some years and it was after the death of Herod that the family came back to Nazareth and dwelt there.” (Five Volume Commentary, Vol. 4, p. 1951-1952)

In Matthew, we read: “And when they were departed, behold, the angel of the Lord appeareth to Joseph in a dream, saying, Arise, and take the young child and his mother, and flee into Egypt, and be thou there until I bring thee word: for Herod will seek the young child to destroy him.” (Matthew, 2:13)

Mary takes Jesusas to her people

The Holy Quran goes on to say, “Then she brought him to her people, carrying him.” (Surah Maryam, Ch.19: V.28)

Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra has said that this moment alludes to when the Messiah had reached the age of 33 and was appointed as a prophet of God. (Tafsir-e-Kabir, Vol. 5, p. 190) 

Alluding to the words تَحۡمِلُہ “carrying him”, it does not mean that Mary was carrying Jesusas as at that time, as stated by Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra, Jesusas was 33. Thus, the phrase تَحۡمِلُہ is similar to what has been stated in Surah al-Jumu‘ah:

مَثَلُ الَّذِيۡنَ حُمِّلُوا التَّوۡرٰةَ ثُمَّ لَمۡ يَحۡمِلُوۡہَا کَمَثَلِ الۡحِمَارِ يَحۡمِلُ اَسۡفَارًا

“The likeness of those who were made to bear the [law of] Torah, but would not bear it, is as the likeness of an ass carrying [a load of] books.” (Surah al-Jumu‘ah, Ch.62: V.6)

“By the words ‘carrying him’ some people are led to think that the verse refers to the time of the childhood of Jesusas when Mary carried him in her arms. But this is an obvious misconception. The verse, in fact, refers to the time when Jesusas had attained to prophethood as is clear from vv. 31-34 wherein he says, I am a servant of Allah, He has given me the Book, and made me a Prophet;…and has enjoined upon me Prayer and alms-giving so long as I live. Surely Jesusas was not made a Prophet in his childhood, nor did he say his Prayers and give Zakah at that time.” (Five Volume Commentary, Vol.4, 1951) This fulfilled the biblical prophecy that Jesusas would come to his people along with his mother, riding an ass. (Matthew 21:4-7)

Further, the Holy Quran states:

“‘O Mary, thou hast done a strange thing.’ (Surah Maryam, Ch.19: V.28)

“The words, ‘thou hast done a strange thing’ contain a double taunt. They refer to the calumny of Mary having given birth to an illegitimate son and to Jesusas having falsely laid claim to prophethood.” (Five Volume Commentary, Vol.4, p.1952)

Mary then pointed to Jesusas (19:30) indicating that how was it possible that an illegitimate birth or the people’s word of her doing a “strange thing” could result in such a holy and righteous son who was with noble qualities and a Prophet of God. By pointing to him, she indicated that his presence vindicated her.

“The words may also signify that when the Jews accused Mary of adultery, she felt embarrassed and pointed to Jesusas, who had by that time become a prophet.” (Five Volume Commentary, Vol. 4, p.1954)

Their saying, “How can we talk to one who is a child in the cradle?” (Surah Maryam, Ch.19: V.30), alluded to the fact that they, being elders, deemed Jesusas a mere boy. (Haqaiq al-Furqan, Vol. 3, p. 65) “Old and learned people are wont to talk like that when invited to learn wisdom from someone who is much younger than them in age. The words merely constitute an expression of contempt and disdain for Jesusas.” (Five Volume Commentary, Vol. 4, p.1954)

Cristina Gottardi. Unsplash
Cristina Gottardi | Unsplash

Jesus’as response

On this occasion, Jesusas responded:

“He said, ‘I am a servant of Allah. He has given me the Book, and made me a Prophet; ‘And He has made me blessed wheresoever I may be, and has enjoined upon me Prayer and almsgiving so long as I live; ‘And [He has made me] dutiful toward my mother, and He has not made me haughty and unblessed. ‘And [peace was on me] the day I was born, and [peace there will be on me] the day I shall die, and the day I shall be raised up to life [again].’” (Surah Maryam, Ch.19: V.31-34)

In this verse, the statement “the Book” refers to the Torah.

Jesusas was given the Torah, the spirit of Holiness, creation of birds, and gave life to the spiritually dead

Jesusas was indeed a Messenger to the Children of Israel (Surah Aal-e-‘Imran, Ch.3: V.50) who was taught by Allah the Book, Wisdom, the Torah, and the Gospel. Throughout Jesus’ life, many miracles have been associated with him. However, some people interpret these miracles literally, attributing godlike attributes to him.

In order to comprehend the true essence of matters that have been transformed into fables and stories, we need to examine the usage and style of the words employed. It is worth noting that the Prophet Jesusas was known for communicating through parables (Matthew 13:34).

The Holy Quran states:

اَنِّيۡۤ اَخۡلُقُ لَکُمۡ مِّنَ الطِّيۡنِ کَہَيۡـَٔةِ الطَّيۡرِ

“I will fashion out for you a [creation] out of clay after the manner of a bird.” (Surah Aal-e-‘Imran, Ch.3: V.50)

We must remember that there is no mention of Jesusas fashioning birds from clay in the Bible. If this were to be taken literally, one wonders why such an event would be omitted from the biblical accounts.

Let it be clear that khalq does not solely mean “to create.” A study of the Arabic language reveals that the language itself is extensive and that it is not possible to assign a single meaning to a word. The attribution of khalq as creation has been exclusively used for God in the Holy Quran. Thus, in this context, and with this in mind, we should study this verse:

“‘I come to you with a Sign from your Lord, [which is], that I will fashion out for you [a creation] out of clay after the manner of a bird, then I will breathe into it [a new spirit] and it will become a soaring being by the command of Allah” (Surah Aal-e-‘Imran, Ch.3: V.50)

When we read the full verse of the Holy Quran and consider what it implies for a prophet of God whose duty is to bring man closer to Allah, it becomes emphatically clear that Jesusas gave spiritual training to ordinary human beings, who then soared in their spirituality. These men of humble origin possessed something within, and it was only after meeting with Prophet Jesusas and accepting his message that they underwent a spiritual transformation. This matter has been further pointed out by Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra in Tafsir-e-Saghir that Prophet Jesusas is explaining, here, that he unleashed spiritual potential among those who followed, enabling them to eventually become devout spiritual seekers devoted to God Almighty. (Tafsir-e-Saghir, p.86)

Further, the verse states:

وَاُبۡرِيٴُ الۡاَکۡمَہَ وَالۡاَبۡرَصَ

“And I will heal the night-blind and the leprous” (3:50)

The word used for healing is اُبۡرِيٴُ, which also signifies clearing and being free (see Dictionary of Quran, p. 62). In the Bible, we learn that individuals afflicted with leprosy were considered impure and were prohibited from coming into contact with others, as stated, “Unclean, unclean”. (Leviticus 13:45) They were also required to dwell alone. (Leviticus 13:46) And so “the clause would signify that the legal or social disabilities and disadvantages under which persons suffering from such maladies laboured were removed by Jesus.” (Five Volume Commentary, Vol. 2, p. 500) 

As mentioned earlier, the creation of birds was interpreted in a spiritual sense, and similarly, these should be understood as such. Prophets of Allah are charged and raised with the duty of guiding Man back to Allah. Just as doctors and physicians are needed to cater for bodily maladies and diseases, so too is there a need for physicians in the spiritual sense, and that is why Prophets are sent to the world.

Kalimah and the refutation of the godship of Jesusas and the look at the meaning “strengthened him with the Spirit of Holiness”

When Mary, the mother of Jesusas, received the glad tidings of a son, the words mentioned in the Quran are يُبَشِّرُکِ بِکَلِمَةٍ مِّنۡہُ meaning “Allah gives thee glad tidings of a word from Him” (Surah Aal-e-`Imran, Ch.3: V.46)

Another verse

اِنَّمَا الۡمَسِيۡحُ عِيۡسَي ابۡنُ مَرۡيَمَ رَسُوۡلُ اللّٰہِ وَکَلِمَتُہٗ

“Verily, the Messiah, Jesus, son of Mary, was only a Messenger of Allah and a [fulfilment] of His word.” (Surah an-Nisa’, Ch.4: V.172)

Here, the Holy Quran’s use of the word کَلِمَتُہ should not be taken to support the Christian notion of the sonship of Jesusas.

Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh emphasised that Christians often employ this verse to mislead Muslims into embracing the false belief of Jesus’ divinity. Christians argue that the “word” mentioned refers to Jesusas, citing the phrase “the word was with God,” and then they present the verse mentioned above. (Urdu Tarjamatul Quran Class #37 – Surah Aal-e-‘Imran verses 44-48)

A simple examination of the verse and its meaning easily disproves this notion. The word “kalimah” has been used in the Holy Quran on multiple occasions, denoting different things based on its usage and context. For instance, in Chapter 37 verse 172, it is used to mean “word”. In Chapter 39 verse 20, it is used to mean “sentence of punishment.”

Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra has said that according to Fathul Bari, “The word Kalimah also means glad tidings.” (Tafsir-e-Saghir, p.138)

Furthermore, when we examine the aforementioned verses, we observe that they do not in any manner endorse the concept of Jesusas the Messiah being a deity. Similar titles have been bestowed upon the companions of the Holy Prophetsa. For instance, when someone is referred to as Saifullah (the Sword of God), as attributed to Hazrat Khalid bin Waleedra, or Asadullah (the Lion of Allah), as attributed to Hazrat Alira, it is meant to highlight their courage and valour and not to be taken literally.

In Surah al-Baqarah, we read:

“We gave Jesus, son of Mary, clear proofs and strengthened him with the Spirit of Holiness.” (Surah al-Baqarah, Ch.2: V.254)

Some raise the allegation that Jesusas was bestowed with the Holy Spirit and thus has a higher level than other Prophets. However, the matter really boils down to a misunderstanding of God’s words. The clause does not imply that other Prophets were not strengthened by the Holy Spirit. In the Quran, Jesusas is simply mentioned to clarify and refute objections levelled against him by the Jews, who believed he was an imposter.

In fact, the Bible states that the Jews asserted that Jesusas had not shown any sign and claimed that he was possessed by an evil spirit (Luke, 11:‌15-16).

Thus, the Holy Quran makes it clear that Jesusas was a true messenger of Allah who, like all prophets, was strengthened with the Spirit of Holiness.

The Jews did not accept Jesusas and attempted to crucify him

Prophet Jesusas, after preaching his message, had disciples who believed him to be a true prophet of God. However, the Jews did not consider his claim to be true. The Jews planned to crucify Jesusas, unaware that God, the best of planners, always supports His prophets. Jesusas was placed on the cross but did not die there.

As the debate on crucifixion has been ongoing for a long time and numerous pages have been written on this matter, a brief mention of the topic will be sufficient.

In Surah Aal-e-Imran, we read:

“When Allah said, ‘O Jesus, I will cause thee to die a [natural death] and will exalt thee to Myself, and will clear thee from [the charges of] those who disbelieve, and will place those who follow thee above those who disbelieve, until the Day of Resurrection; then to Me shall be your return, and I will judge between you concerning that wherein you differ.” (Surah Aal-e-‘Imran, Ch.3: V.56)

This verse is often quoted by Muslims to emphasise Jesus’ physical ascension to Allah. However, if we carefully examine the context and subject, the matter becomes clear.

It has already been mentioned above that the Jews attempted to crucify Jesusas, intending to take his life on the cross. The verse refers to the occasion when Jesusas became a victim of his enemies, who plotted to have him crucified and die an accursed death, for it is mentioned in Deuteronomy that “for he that is hanged is accursed of God” (Deuteronomy, 21:22). With this in mind, we should analyse and examine the quoted verse mentioned earlier.

“When Allah said, ‘O Jesus, I will cause thee to die a [natural death] and will exalt thee to Myself.’”

Here, it is as if God is saying that although the Jews are attempting to take Jesus’ life, it is ultimately God who will determine when and where Jesusas shall pass away, not the Jews.

Further, as the Quran states:

وَمَا قَتَلُوۡہُ وَمَا صَلَبُوۡہُ وَلٰکِنۡ شُبِّہَ لَہُمۡ

“They slew him not, nor crucified him, but he was made to appear to them [like one crucified].” (Surah al-Nisa, Ch.4: V.158)

The Holy Quran unequivocally denies Jesus’ demise on the cross. Instead, it boldly asserts that the Jews failed in their attempt to crucify him and that Jesusas only appeared to have passed away, while in reality, he simply fainted. An examination of the different accounts in Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, as well as the events surrounding the incident, will clearly demonstrate that he fainted.

Often, some Western objectors quote this verse and imply that the Holy Quran completely denies the entire incident. They argue that the words وَمَا صَلَبُوهُ indicate that the event did not occur (The Atheist Who Didn’t Exist, p. 63).  By stating this, it seems as if an attempt is being made  to cast a negative light on the Holy Quran. However, their understanding could not be further from the truth.

The words وَمَا صَلَبُوهُ does not imply that Jesusas was not placed on the cross. It simply means that he did not die on the cross. In everyday language, if someone is said to have been crucified or hanged, it typically indicates that they died on the cross.

The Messiah in Kashmir

After escaping the vicious clutches of his enemies and realising that it was no longer safe to continue his mission, Jesusas went into hiding.

“And Jesus saith unto him, The foxes have holes, and the birds of the air have nests; but the Son of man hath not where to lay his head.” (Mathew, 8:20)

Thus, Jesusas made the decision to leave Palestine and embarked on a journey. He travelled from Nazareth to Damascus and stayed there for a period of time. The place where he stayed, known as Maqam-i-’=;pIsa, continues to be recognized to this day. From there, he proceeded to Nisibin and then travelled through Iran and Afghanistan before ultimately reaching Kashmir. “Yuz Asaf (Yuz in Hebrew being the same as Yasu‘ and Asaf meaning the gatherer). Henceforward Jesusas becomes Yuz Asaf and is known by this name till his death.” (Five Volume Commentary, Vol. 4, p.2217) Eventually, as the Holy Quran states, Jesusas made his way to the other tribes of the Bani Israel in order to convey his message as he was a messenger sent to the tribes of the Bani Israel.  He took “refuge on an elevated land having meadows and springs of running water.” (Surah al-Mu’minun, Ch.23: V.51) For details, see Jesus in India by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahamdas.

Jesus’as prophecy of Ahmad, the “Comforter”

It is common for prophets of Allah to prophesy about a future prophet who will follow them. Jesusas was fortunate to be the prophet who preceded the Holy Prophetsa and informed his people about the coming of the Holy Prophetsa after his own departure.

The Holy Quran records: “And [remember] when Jesus, son of Mary, said, ‘O children of Israel, surely I am Allah’s Messenger unto you, fulfilling that which is before me of the Torah, and giving glad tidings of a Messenger who will come after me; his name being Ahmad.’” (Surah as-Saff, Ch.61: V.7)

The Holy Quran records the incident when Prophet Jesusas gave his people the glad tidings of a prophet whose name would be Ahmad.

The Bible also makes mention of this:

“And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.” (John, 14:16-17)

Then, we read:

“But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:” (John, 15:26)

We also find:

“Nevertheless, I tell you the truth; It is expedient for you that I go away: for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I depart, I will send him unto you.” (John, 16:7)

The following is in the same chapter:

“I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now. Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you.” (John, 16:12-14)

These verses from John clearly establish the following:

“(1) That Paraclete or the Comforter or the Spirit of Truth could not come unless Jesusas should have departed from the world. (2) That the Comforter was to abide in the world for ever. (3) That he was to say many things that Jesusas himself could not tell because the world could not then bear them. (4) That he would guide men unto all truth. (5) That he would not speak of himself, but whatever he would hear that would he speak. (6) That the Comforter would glorify Jesusas and testify of him.” (Five Volume Commentary, Vol. 5, p. 3145)

Thus, after 600 years, the world was blessed with the greatest prophet to have walked the earth, the Holy Prophet Muhammad, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitab manaqibi l-ansar, Hadith 3948)

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