Culmination Of The Institution Of Prophethood

Question

I believe in finality of prophethood, and I have read the same from Ghamdi Sahib's Meezan, but one of my friends believes that prophethood has not terminated on Muḥammad (sws). He says BAB and BAHULLAH are the prophets who followed Muhammad. He gives following verse of the Qur'an in support of his argument:

O children of Adam: If there comes to you Messengers from amongst you, reciting to you, My verses, then whosoever becomes pious and righteous, on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve. (al-A'raaf 35)

He claims that the verse quoted above clearly shows continuity of prophethood for ever. Please comment.


Answer

Thank you for writing to us. We believe that the verse you have quoted does not prove that the Messengers will continue to come even after the Prophet (sws). Consider the translation you have provided yourself.

O children of Adam: If there comes to you Messengers from amongst you, reciting to you, My verses, then whosoever becomes pious and righteous, on them shall be no fear, nor shall they grieve. (al-A'raaf 35)

The underlined part of the verse says if there comes to you Messengers from amongst yourself reciting to you My verses. It means that we have to believe in the Messengers coming from God, not every person claiming to be a Messenger of God. Besides in this surah, the Holy Qur'an in fact reminds its first addressees the advice God gave to Adam in the beginning.

The word if is important. Does it mean that if someone claims to be the Messenger of God he has to be accepted as the Divine Messenger? I am afraid it is not the case. The Messenger has to establish himself as the true Messenger of God. How does the Messenger prove that he is the true Prophet of God? We know that all the Messengers are already prophesied. The Last Messenger, however, did not leave any such prophecy and instead he clearly stated that he is the last one. His teachings in this regard have been part of the Muslim belief and have been transferred from generality to generality in each layer of the generations of the believers.

The Muslim belief of the finality of the Prophet (sws) does not rest only on the interpretation of any or more of the Qur'anic verses. It, on the contrary, is based on the consensus of the believers in that the last Prophet (sws) himself revealed that he is the last Prophet and that no other prophet would follow him.

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