Prophets and Messengers of God – Their Names

Prophets of Islam

“In the name of God, the Compassionate, the Merciful.”

Like Christianity and Judaism Islam is also from the Abrahamic lineage. Abraham (PBUH) was neither Jew nor Christian, he came long before Moses (PBUH). A Muslim is a person, who worships one God without associating any partners with Him. Muslims believe that all of the prophets of God worshiped Him alone, which they relate to.

For me it was very interesting to know and compare the names of the prophets of Islam with the names mentioned in the other two monotheistic religions, Judaism and Christianity. It turns out we are talking about the same people, however, much to my surprise I found out that according to the Judaism and Christianity some of these Prophets’ characters have some bad names attached. As a Muslim, I thought how can that be? Muslims know them to have perfect characters, their actions are defendable according to Islam and anything beyond that was forgiven by God through their sincere repentance. Thus, it is an example for us to repent directly to God when we do anything wrong. And of course, sincerely means that make all effort not to repeat that. Also, many people do not know this, the Holy book of Islam, the Holy Quran, is a book without any flaws and it remained uncorrupted as it is the last and the final revelation to all people. It is a book not just for the Muslims. So, this last book to the mankind had to remain uncorrupted whereas, the Bible and the Torah, as everyone knows, were changed, sometimes by the powerful authorities intentionally and sometimes by the scribes unintentionally in the early days when printers did not exist.

There is only one version of the Arabic Quran, the translations are not considered the original revelation, they are the translations of the revelation. So, this uncorrupted book of Islam tells us about the great characters of these Prophets. The Prophets were all great men. All of these Prophets came with one unified message, which is to believe in the oneness of our Creator. Sometimes when people do not want to believe in the messages, they blame the messenger and try to portray them as somewhat bad people, but in the end, it is their loss.

Prophet (Nabi) is used to understand God’s messengers in general, who may or may not have received a scripture. Messenger (Rasul) is used to understand God’s messengers, only those, who did receive scriptures. All messengers are prophets, but not all prophets are messengers.

Here are some of the major Prophets and Messengers of Islam:

(Arabic - English)

Adam - Adam

Sheeth - Seth

Idris - Enoch

Nuh - Noah

Hud - Eber

Saleh - Salih

Ibrahim - Abraham

Lut - Lot

Isma’il - Ishmael

Is’haq - Isaac

Yaqub - Jacob

Ayyub - Job

Shu’ayb - Jethro

Musa - Moses

Harun - Aaron

Dawud - David

Sulayman - Solomon

Ilyas - Elijah

Al-Yasa - Elisha

Yunus - Jonah

Dhul-Kifl - Ezekiel

Dhul-Qarnayn - Zul-Qarnayn

Zakariyya - Zakaria

Yahya - John

Isa - Jesus

Muhammad - Muhammad

May God’s peace and blessings be up on all of them.

In Islam there are four major messengers mentioned, who received books. Amongst them are: Moses (The Torah), David (The Psalm), Jesus (The Gospel or the Holy Bible) and Prophet Muhammad (The Holy Quran) may God’s peace and blessings be up on all of them.

Oftentimes people choose these names for their children regardless of their culture. Their stories are full of amazing tales and we can learn so much from their stories.

Muslims express their respect to the Prophets by wishing them Peace or Salam by saying Alaihe Salam or abbreviated AS after their names.

Some fun information about them, well, according to Islamic belief:

Adam (AS) was the first human being God created, he was created without a father and a mother because God is capable of creating, He is The Creator.

Abraham (AS) is known to us as the father of Monotheism. Monotheism means to believe in the absolute oneness of God. Prophet Lot (AS) was Abraham (AS)’s nephew. The next four generation of Prophet Abraham (AS) were also Prophets, they were, his son Ishmael (AS), his son Isaac (AS), his grandson Jacob (AS) and his great grandson Joseph (AS). Joseph or Yusuf (AS) was one of the most beautiful people of all. According to some Islamic sources Prophet Yusuf (AS) was given half of this world’s beauty. And he was a very pious man too. There is an entire chapter named Yusuf in the Holy Quran, from where we can read about him.

Moses (AS) was sent to Pharaoh. Now-a-days when we see pharaoh’s mummy in the museum many people may think of him as a powerful man and they may even admire, but in reality, we would hate him if we knew how bad he was and how tyrant he was, he killed people, he cut off people’s hands and feet on the alternate sides, he tortured people, and Prophet Moses (AS) with his stutter was asked to go to him to give him the message of God, to convey to him that God is one and he should believe in Him. Can you imagine how this message might have been received by Pharaoh? He was enraged. And you know the story. What a mighty task it was for Prophet Moses (AS). As all Prophets were given mighty tasks of great gravity, Prophet Moses (AS) was indeed a great Prophet, he was a brave and a nice person. Prophet Aaron (AS) was Prophet Moses (AS)’s brother. Prophet Moses (AS) asked for him when he was asked to go to Pharaoh by God.

Prophet David (AS) was also another mighty messenger, you may know the story of Goliath, how David (AS) fought him with a sling when he was just a young boy and he was able to kill him in a dual and save the people form his tyranny and married the King’s daughter and became a king. Prophet David (AS) was a just king, he was a good judge and so was his son Prophet Solomon (AS). What a great story.

Prophet Solomon’s story is also indeed very interesting. He could control the wind, understand the birds and he had control over the “Jinn” by the will of God. God granted Solomon (AS) permission over these creatures. The Jinn are a creation of God that are invisible to the human eyes, in a simple term, the ghosts! Islam talks about Jinns, it is a species created by God. For example, Satan is of this species. They have families and live in a parallel realm, sort of like in another existence but not in another universe than us. Very interesting, by being aware of them helps us to have a perspective of who they are. According to Islam, we should not be afraid of them at all because they have no power over us. In Islam God tells us that He created many other creatures that we do not know about and this is just one of them. God also tells us that these creatures have no control over us. How liberating is that? Amazing! Islam is a good religion it covers all our questions. There are more about Jinns. The Holy Quran has a chapter called The Jinns, but the Quran is not fully understood without the Hadiths, which are the Prophet Muhammad (SAWS)’s saying. The chapter in the Quran gives some stories and incidents about them, but not on who they are, Muslims learn about them from various Hadiths. Knowing about these supernatural species who do not have any control over us really empowers us. Each Prophets were given many miracles and these were some of the miracles of Prophet Solomon (AS).

Zul-Qarnayn is thought to be Alexander the Great by some based on the stories about him conquering a vast empire from the east to the west. To have such significant presence, his story has to be related to something of this similar grand scale, but nonetheless, scholars debate about this. Chapter eighteen of the Holy Quran talks about him. So, without a definite answer to whether or not if he was Alexander the Great, we can only imagine and appreciate his greatness form the stories that we know.

Zakaria (AS) was Jesus (AS)'s mother, Mary's, sister's husband. He was a very pious Prophet himself. John (AS) was Zakaria's son, he was Jesus (AS)’s cousin, a few years older than Jesus (AS) and was Jesus's disciple. Finally, we come to Prophet Jesus (AS). Muslims know him as Isa (AS), but now a days they know him as Jesus (AS) also. Muslims love him very dearly. Muslim’s version of Jesus (AS)’s story is also fascinating. While Muslims aim to maintain their monotheism by not calling Jesus (AS) God’s son, because that would not be appropriate form them, they accept Jesus (AS) as God’s mighty messenger and their love for Jesus has no boundaries. What an amazing person Jesus (AS) must have been. Another logic for Islamic belief is that since God is capable of creating without a father and a mother like He created Adam (AS), God created Jesus (AS) without a father just like that and that does not diminish anything for Jesus (AS). Muslims love Jesus (AS).

Finally, Prophet Muhammad (SAWS), he was born in year 570 and died in year 633. Needless to say, Muslims love him a lot. Muslims acknowledge him as the last and the final messenger of God in the chain of the Prophets and the Messengers.

May God’s Peace and Blessings be up on all of them. Each one of them were just amazing!

Thanks for reading.