by M. Amir Ali, Ph.D.
Allah is the name of the true One God in the Arabic language. In the Hebrew language His name is Eloh, Elohim for respect. It is well known that when a word is borrowed from one language to another it’s spelling and pronunciation is often altered. It is, therefore, reasonable to say that Eloh and Allah are names of the same Deity of Abraham believed by the three monotheistic religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam. Islam is the most rigorously monotheistic religion among the three dedicated to the worship of Allah, never seen by a human eye.
Who is Allah? The translation of verses from the Qur’an are given to answer this question. References of the verses are given in brackets, the number before the colon represents the Surah (chapter) and the following number represents the verse number.
Allah, the One Only
“Proclaim: Allah is One. Allah is Eternal. He neither begets nor was begotten.” (112:1-4)
“Nothing is like unto Him.” (42:11)
“If there were therein Gods besides Allah, then verily both (the heavens and the earth) would have collapsed into disorder and chaos. Glorified be Allah, the Lord of the Throne, transcendent beyond all they ascribe unto Him.” (21:22)
“Sight can never reach Him; His sight reaches all things.” (6:103)
“And proclaim: Praise be to Allah, Who has not taken unto Himself a son, and Who has no partner in the Sovereignty, nor has He (need for) any protecting friend through dependence. (17:111)
“Allah! There is no God save Him.” (3:2, 2:255)
“Is there any God beside Allah? Nay, but they are folk who ascribe equals (unto Him)! (27:60).
“Is there any God beside Allah? Nay, but most of them know not.” (27:61)
Attributes of Allah
Muslims talk about ninety-nine attributes of Allah; a few are given in the following verses of the Qur’an.
“And He is the Mighty, the Wise. His is the Sovereignty of the heavens and the earth; He gives life and He gives death; and He is able to do all things. He is the First and the Last, and the Outward and the Inward; and He is the Knower of all things.” (57:1-3)
“Allah is He, other than Whom there is no deity. He knows (all things) both secret and open; He, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. Allah is He, other than Whom there is no deity; the Sovereign, the Holy One, the Source of Peace (and Perfection), the Guardian of Faith, the Preserver of Safety, the Exalted in Might, the Irresistible, the Supreme: Glory to Allah! (High is He) above the partners they attribute to Him. He is Allah the Creator, the Evolver, the Bestowed of Forms (and Colors). To Him belong the Most Beautiful Names: Whatever is the heavens and on earth, do declare His Praise and Glory; and He is exalted in Might, the Wise.” (59:22-24)
“Allah! There is no God save Him, the Alive, the Eternal. Neither slumber nor sleep overtakes Him. Unto Him belongs whatsoever is in the heavens and whatsoever is in the earth. Who is he that intercedes with Him save by His permission? He knows that which is in front of them and that which is behind them, while they encompass nothing of His knowledge save what He will. His throne includes the heavens and the earth, and He is never weary of preserving them. He is the Sublime, the Tremendous.” (2:255)
“The Originator of the heavens and the earth!” (6:101)
“The Beneficent, the Merciful: Owner of the Day of Judgment. (1:3-4)
“Say: Call upon Allah, or call upon Ar-Rahman: by whatever name you call upon Him, (it is well): For to Him belong the Most Beautiful Names.” (17:110)
“And you seek the Grace of Allah: for Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” (73:20)
“The revelation of this Book is from Allah, Exalted in Power, Full of Knowledge, Who forgives sin, accepts repentance, is strict in punishment, and has a long reach (in all things). There is no god but He: to Him is the Final Goal.” (40:2-3)
Allah the Creator
“Have not those who disbelieve known that the heavens and the earth were of one piece, then We parted them, and We made every living thing from water? Will they not then believe?” (21:30)
[In this verse ‘We’ belongs to imperial language, not of plurality. In the Qur’an, Allah uses ‘I’, ‘Me’ ‘We’ and ‘Us’ for Himself.]
“And He it is Who created the night and the day, and the sun and the moon. They float each in an orbit… And from among His signs are the night and the day, and the sun and the moon. Prostrate not to the sun nor to the moon, but prostrate to Allah Who created them, if you (really) worship Him.” (21:33, 41:37)
“He has created man: He has imparted unto him articulate thought and speech. [At His behest] the sun and the moon run their appointed courses; the stars and the trees prostrate themselves [before Him]. And the skies has He raised high, and has devised [for all things] a measure, so that you [too, O men,] might never transgress the measure [of what is right]: weigh, therefore, [your deeds] with equity, and cut not the measure short! (55:3-9)
“It is Allah Who created everything in the best of form…It is He Who created and perfected all things.” (32:7, 87:2)
“It is Allah Who created life and death that you may prove yourself worthy in your deeds.” (67:2)
“Such is Allah, your Lord. There is no god except Him, the Creator of all things, so serve Him. And He takes care of all things.” (6:102)
“He is the Cleaver of the daybreak, and He has appointed the night for stillness, and the sun and the moon to run their appointed courses: [all] this is laid down by the Will of the Almighty, the All-Knowing. (6:96)
“Allah is He Who created seven heavens and of the earth a similar number. Through the midst of them (all) descends His command: that you may know that Allah has power over all things, and that Allah comprehends all things in (His) knowledge.” (65:12)
“He it is Who has made the sun a [source of] radiant light and the moon shining [surface], and has determined for it phases so that you might know how to compute the years and to measure [time]. None of this has Allah created without [an inner] truth. Clearly does He spell out these messages unto people of [innate] knowledge.” (10:5)
“Allah has indeed made all things in heaven and earth subservient to humankind; it is all from Him. Lo! Herein verily are portents for people who reflect.” (45:13)
Allah, the Sustainer, the Cherisher, the Lord (Al-Rabb)
“All praise is due to Allah Alone, the Lord [the Sustainer, the Cherisher] of the worlds.” (1:2)
“Everything We have created and prescribed for its measure, its character and destiny…No creature creeps on earth but Allah provides for it its sustenance. He knows its purpose and destiny. For it is He Who prescribed them in His eternal order…The sun rises and sets traversing its orbit exactly as the Almighty, the All Knowing has ordained. And the moon passes regularly through its phases, returning to its original thin crescent form. Neither sun nor moon overtakes the other; neither night nor day deviates from their preordained courses. Each moves in the orbit Allah has ordained for it. (54:49, 11:6, 36:38-40)
In the Qur’an, the name Allah is used more than 2,600 times and His attribute, Al-Rabb (the Lord, the Cherisher, the Sustainer), has been used over 1,000 times.
Allah Revealed the Truth – Option Given
“We revealed to you the Book in truth, that you may proclaim it to the world. Whoever decides to be guided by its guidance does so to his own credit. Whoever rejects its guidance does so to his own discredit and you are not a warder over them.” (39:41)
“Let there be no compulsion [or coercion] in religion: Truth stands out clear from error; whoever rejects evil and believes in Allah has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that never breaks. And Allah hears and knows all things.” (2:256)
“And say: The Truth [has now come] from your Lord: let, then him who wills, believe in it, and let him who wills, reject it.” (18:29)
“And if your Lord willed, all who are in the earth would have believed together. Would you [Muhammad] compel men until they are believers?” (10:99)
“No person is responsible for the guilt of another. To every person belongs the merit or demerit of what he had wrought… Allah does not charge a person with more than he can bear. Therefore, to everyone belongs the credit or discredit which he had personally earned.” (53:38-39, 2:286)
“Whoever guides himself by Our revelation does so to his own credit. Whoever goes astray does so to his own peril. Nobody will be responsible for another’s deeds, and We will not judge but after a messenger sent [to proclaim and warn] … Whoever does good will have that good reckoned for him. Whoever does evil will have that evil marked against him. Your Lord commits no injustice to His servants.” (17:15, 41:46)
“Say: You are not accountable for our crimes; nor are we for the evil you do… On the Day of Judgment, no person will of any avail to another, neither for good nor for ill. Those who committed injustice will be assigned to the Fire which they denied.” (34:25,42)
“Say: Are those who know equal with those who know not? But only men of understanding will pay heed.” (39:9)
“There is not an animal in the earth nor a flying creature flying on two wings, but they are community like unto you. We have neglected nothing in the Book. Then unto their Lord they will be gathered.” (6:38)
“Allah has made what is in the heavens and on the earth subservient to you… And He has made subservient to you the sun and the moon, predetermined in their orbits, and the day and the night… It is Allah Who made you His trustees on earth… Can you not see that Allah made all that is on earth subservient to you?” (14:33, 31:29, 35:39, 22:65)