Question # 453: salamu alaikum, please my question is did we muslim and christian observe the same GOD? thank you

bismi-llahi r-raḥmani r-raḥīm,

Assalamu ‘laikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh,

All praise and thanks are due to Allah (سبحانه و تعالى), and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم).

Dear questioner,

First of all, we implore Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) to help us serve His cause and render our work for His sake.

Shorter Answer: The word ‘Allah’ was used even before the prophethood of Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم) by the Arabic-speaking Jews and Christians living in the Arabian Peninsula in reference to the one and only true God of the Bible. This can be proved from textual, lexical, historical, as well as theological perspectives. Nevertheless, the Jews and Christians corrupted the original concept they received about the nature of God, and Islam came to restore that true concept of His nature. So, while Muslims and Christians believe in the same God, the latter conceives of His nature differently. There are very many places in the Bible where ill-befitting attributes have been ascribed to God, and apparent contradictions with respect to His attributes can be found.

Long Answer: Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says in the Qur’an:

  • “And argue not with the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), unless it be in (a way) that is better, except with such of them as do wrong, and say (to them): “We believe in that which has been revealed to us and revealed to you; our Ilah (God) and your Ilah (God) is One (i.e. Allah), and to Him, we have submitted (as Muslims).” (Soorah Al-‘Ankabut, 29:46)
  • “Verily, We have inspired you (O Muhammad) as We inspired Nuh (Noah) and the Prophets after him; We (also) inspired Ibrahim (Abraham), Isma’il (Ishmael), Ishaque (Isaac), Ya’qub (Jacob), and Al­Asbat [the twelve sons of Ya’qub (Jacob)], ‘Iesa (Jesus), Ayub (Job), Yunus (Jonah), Harun (Aaron), and Sulaiman (Solomon), and to Dawud (David) We gave the Zabur (Psalms).” (Soorah An-Nisa’a, 4:163)
  • “…And your Ilah (God) is One Ilah (God Allah), so you must submit to Him Alone. And (O Muhammad) give glad tidings to the Mukhbitin [those who obey Allah with humility and are humble from among the true believers of Islamic Monotheism]” (Soorah Al-Hajj, 22:34)

However, some orientalists (like Robert Morey[1]) came up with a faux theory, whereby they assert that Allah was originally the moon god worshipped in Arabia before and during the time of Prophet Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم). According to this theory, the Kabah contained 360 idols, among which was the moon god called ’ilah (or a god) and this god was declared to be the chief god and was called ’al ’ilah by adding the article ’al to ’ilah, thus yielding the meaning ―Allah (the god). In fact, there are several weaknesses in this forged theory; the word ‘Allah’ was even used by the Arabic-speaking Jews and Christians during the time of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) in referring to the true God of the Bible. This assertion is based on the following four factors: textual, lexical, historical, and theological.

Textual Factor

The evidence seems to suggest that referring to the one true biblical God as ‘Allah’ began to occur among Jews and Christians earlier than Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم)‘s time. Translations of parts of the New Testament into the Arabic language took place in the fourth and fifth centuries A.D., in which the word ‘Allah’ was used for the true God. In agreement with the Lebanese Jesuit scholar Louis Cheikho[2], Kenneth Bailey, author of the book ‘The Arabic Translations of the Bible: Some Thoughts on Its History and Importance’ asserts that some Muslim writers of the seventh century quoted full pages of the New Testament in Arabic.

The oldest extant Arabic manuscript containing much of the New Testament, Codex 151[3], dates from the ninth century A.D. It contains all the New Testament except the four Gospels and Revelation. This codex has several colophons that indicate when different segments of the manuscript were written. What is noteworthy about this codex is that all but three of the New Testament books in this manuscript begin with ‘Bismi Allahi Ar-Rahmani Ar-Rahim’ (In the Name of Allah, the Merciful and Compassionate). Only three New Testament books in the same manuscript (Acts, Romans, and 2 Corinthians) begin instead with ―In the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. This shows that within two hundred years after Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم)‘s life Arab Christians viewed ―’Allah’ as referring to the God of the Christian Scriptures. In fact, Codex 151 demonstrates that the Arab Christians used the Islamic ways of thinking rather freely. This is evident, for example, in the use of the Islamic dating system and the use of Qur’anic terminology to refer to Christians.

Lexical Factor

The word ― ‘Allah’ is a cognate of the Hebrew plural אֱוֹּהִים, ―gods or ―God, and the singular אֱלוֹץַ, ―a god or ―God. The root of these Hebrew words is assumed to be אלה, which corresponds to the Arabic ‘ilah, meaning ―a god. The second syllable,’il, is the most important in ’al-’ilah where ’il is the Semitic word for God since time immemorial. Furthermore, the word ‘Allah’, like many other words—especially religious words—was used in Aramaic as well – ’alaha or ’alah, which is the word for the unique Christian God. Several lines of evidence support this Aramaic origin. First, Aramaic was the language used by Jews and Christians in the Arab Peninsula and northern Mesopotamia. In fact, Aramaic was the lingua franca of the Near East in biblical and postbiblical times (2 Kings 18:26; Isa. 36:11; Ezra 4:7; Dan. 2:4; John 5:2; 19:17, 20; 20:16; Acts 21:40; 22:2; 26:14), and it ceded to Arabic only in the ninth century A.D., two full centuries after the Islamic conquests.

Next, the Aramaic word ’alah is used for both ―a god and ―the God, and the word ’alaha is used for ―God or ―the God. This is true in the spoken language as well as in both the Old and New Testaments of the modern Aramaic Bible. Furthermore in Arabic ―’Allah’ and in Aramaic ’alaha/’alah the consonants for the word ―God are the same as those for ―God in the Aramaic portion of the Masoretic text of Daniel and Ezra, which uses the designation אֱלָהָא (Ezra 4:24; 5:2, 8, 13–17; 6:3, 5, 7–8, 12, 16–18, 7:24; Dan. 2:20; 3:26; 4:2; 5:3, 18, 21, 26; 6:20). Middle-Eastern Christianity came to use ’alah and ’alaha frequently. Scholars believe that Jesus spoke mostly Aramaic, although sometimes he spoke Hebrew and, on some occasions, he may have spoken Greek. If Jesus spoke Aramaic, then when he referred to God, he used basically the same word that is used in Arabic.

Further, the hadith asserts that the Jews and Christians referred to as ―the People of the Book in Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم)‘s time ―used to read the Torah in Hebrew and explain it to Muslims in Arabic. [(Narrated Abu Huraira: “The people of the Scripture (Jews) used to recite the Torah in Hebrew, and they used to explain it in Arabic to the Muslims. On that, Allah’s Messenger (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said, “Do not believe the people of the Scripture or disbelieve them, but say:– “We believe in Allah and what is revealed to us, and whatever is revealed to you.”” (Soorah Al-Baqarah, 2:136) (Sahih Al-Bukhari)]The hadith also declares that Waraqah bin Naufal, the cousin of Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم)‘s first wife, who had much influence on Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) early in his career and had been a Christian before the development of Islam, was accustomed to copying the New Testament from its Hebrew translation. [Narrated `Aishah (رضي الله عنها): “The Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) returned to Khadija while his heart was beating rapidly. She took him to Waraqah bin Naufal who was a Christian convert and used to read the Gospels in Arabic…(Sahih Al-Bukhari)]

Historical Factor

The word ―’Allah’, reflecting a belief in Him as the one and only true God, was well known among the Arabs before Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم)‘s birth, or at least before his mission. This is reflected in several poems, including the famous seven odes known as the Muʻallaqat[4]. In these poems, ‘Allah’ is presented as the Creator, Sustainer, Giver, Provider of immortality, the Center of religion, the unique one on whom the whole universe depends, and the omniscient, inscrutable, and omnipotent God.

Next, the Ka’bah was called the House of ‘Allah’ (i.e., Baitullah) before the birth of the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم). Though people then had 360 deities, the pre-Islamic Arabs did not forget the one and only God. In fact, they did not see ‘Allah’ as one of many deities but always as the supreme God, higher than any of their other deities. Thus Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم)‘s own father had the name ‘Abd’Allah’ (the servant of ‘Allah’). These deities were recognized as secondary to ‘Allah’, but they were also seen as mediators to ‘Allah’.

The Qur’an indicates that pre-Islamic Arabs at that time considered these deities as intercessors through whom they hoped to reach the true God with their prayer requests: “Surely, the religion (i.e. the worship and the obedience) is for Allah only. And those who take Auliya’ (protectors and helpers) beside Him (say): “We worship them only that they may bring us near to Allah.” Verily, Allah will judge between them concerning that wherein they differ. Truly, Allah guides not him who is a liar, and a disbeliever.” (Soorah Az-Zumar 39:3)

Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) wanted to abolish not only the idea of associating partners with Allah but also the idea of a mediator to Allah. Speaking to the Arabs who had not become Muslims then, Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says in the Qur‘an: “Surely, your Lord is Allah Who created the heavens and the earth in six Days and then Istawa (rose over) the Throne (really in a manner that suits His Majesty), disposing of the affair of all things. No intercessor (can plead with Him) except after His Leave. That is Allah, your Lord; so, worship Him (Alone). Then, will you not remember?” (Soorah Yunus, 10:3)

Theological Factor

Islam focuses on the oneness of God, the Sovereign over all creation. Philosophically ‘Allah’ is seen as the uncaused Cause of all that exists. The name of ‘Allah’ is defined as the name of the necessarily existent Being. ‘Allah’ is the only true and eternal Creator, the Almighty, who is omniscient and omnipotent. In fact, Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) says in the Qur’an: “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.” (Soorah Fussilat, 41:37) Further, it was narrated Abu Hurairah (رضي الله عنه) that the Prophet (صلى الله عليه و سلم) said, “The sun and the moon will be folded up (deprived of their light) on the Day of Resurrection.” (Sahih al-Bukhari) Obviously, only one God matches this description.


As mentioned earlier, the term Allah was used even before the prophethood of Muhammad (صلى الله عليه و سلم) by the Arabic-speaking Jews and Christians living in the Arabian Peninsula in reference to the one and only true God. However, while Christianity today has much in common with Islam regarding the essential attributes of God, there is wide divergence in His moral and relational attributes on the part of Christians. Muslims and Christians may speak of the same subject, the true God, but the latter have different concepts of Him. Since both Jews and Christians have corrupted the original concept they received about the nature of God, Islam came to restore that true concept of His nature. So, while Muslims and Christians believe in the same God, the latter conceives of His nature differently.

(Paraphrased and edited from the Islamic perspective from the article: ‘Do Muslims and Christians Believe in the Same God?’ by L’Institut pour les questions relatives à l’islam (IQRI))

[As for Muslims, the touchstone for Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) is mentioned in the Qur’an in the following ayahs:

  • Ayat-ul-Kursi: Allah! La ilaha illa Huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but He), the Ever Living, the One Who sustains and protects all that exists. Neither slumber, nor sleep overtakes Him. To Him belongs whatever is in the heavens and whatever is on earth. Who is he that can intercede with Him except with His Permission? He knows what happens to them (His creatures) in this world and what will happen to them in the Hereafter. And they will never compass anything of His Knowledge except that which He wills. His Kursi extends over the heavens and the earth, and He feels no fatigue in guarding and preserving them. And He is the Most-High, the Most-Great. (Soorah Al-Baqarah, 2:255)
  • Say: “He is Allah, (the) One. Allah-us-Samad (The Self-Sufficient Master, Whom all creatures need, He neither eats nor drinks). He begets not, nor was He begotten; And there is none co-equal or comparable unto Him.” (Soorah Al-Ikhlas 112:1-4)]

Contrary to the above, the following verses from the Bible are some of the examples where the ill-befitting attributes have been ascribed to God:]

  • A “hissing” God (Isaiah 5:26; 7:18; Zecharia 10:8)
  • A ”roaring” God (Isaiah 42:13; Jeremiah 25:30)
  • A “barber” God (Isaiah 7:20)
  • A “penitent” God (Jeremiah 15:6; Genesis 6:6)
  • A God “riding” a cherub (Samuel II 22: 11)
  • A God who murders 50,070[5] for looking into a box (Samuel I 6: 19)

[Further, there are very many places where the attributes of God were contradicted within the Bible. Following are a few of those examples:]


  • “No man hath seen God at any time” (John 1:18)
  • “God” whom no man hath seen, nor can see…” (Timothy I 6:16)
  • “And he (God) said. Thou canst see my face: for there shall no man see me, and live.” (Exodus 33:20)

Contradicted by the following verses:

  • “And the Lord spake unto Moses face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend.” (Exodus 33: 11)
  • “And they (Moses, Aaron, and seventy others) saw the God of Israel…”(Exodus 24:10)
  • “And Jacob called the name of the place Peniel: for I have seen God face to face, and my life is preserved.” (Genesis 32:30)
  • And as a special favor, God shows his back parts to Moses: “And I (God) will take away my hand, and thou shalt see my back parts…” (Exodus 33:23)

GOD IS NOT A FABRICATOR OF CONFUSION: “For God is NOT the author of confusion…” (Corinthians I 14:33)

Contradicted by the following verses:

  • “…I make peace, and CREATE EVIL…” (Isaiah 45:7)
  • “But the spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and AN EVIL SPIRIT from the Lord troubled him.” (Samuel I 16:14)
  • “And for this cause God shall send them a strong delusion, that they should BELIEVE A LIE.” (Thessalonians II 2:11)

GOD AS AN OMNIPOTENT BEING: “And Jesus saith . . . for with God ALL THINGS are possible.” (Mark 10:27, also Mathew 19:26)

Contradicted by the following verse:

  • “And the Lord was with Judah: and he drove out the inhabitants of the mountain, but COULD NOT drive out the inhabitants of the valley. Because they had CHARIOTS OF IRON.” (Judges 1:19)

GOD’S ANGER ABIDETH FOR A MINUTE: “For his (God’s) anger endureth but a MOMENT.” (Psalms 30:5)

Contradicted by the following verse:

  • “And the Lord’s anger was kindled against Israel. and he made them (the Jews) wander in the wilderness FORTY YEARS…” (Numbers 32:13)

GOD DOES NOT SHOW ANY SELF-REPROACH: “God is not a man, that he should lie; neither the son of man, that he should REPENT…” (Numbers 23:19)

Contradicted by the following verses:

  • “. . . and the Lord REPENTED that he made Saul king over Israel.” (Samuel I 15:35)
  • “And the Lord REPENTED of the evil which he thought to do unto his people (Israel ).” (Exodus 32:14)

GOD’S MERCY ENDURETH FOR EVER: “For the Lord is good, and his mercy is EVERLASTING.” (Psalms 100:5)

Contradicted by the following verse:

  • “I (God) remember that which Amalek did to Israel (four hundred years before) . . . Now go and smite Amalek, and UTTERLY DESTROY ALL they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass (the donkey).” (Samuel I 15:3)

GOD DWELLS IN LIGHT: “ … (God) dwelling in the LIGHT which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see…” (Timothy I 6:16)

Contradicted by the following verse:

  • “Then spake Solomon, the Lord said that he would dwell in the THICK DARKNESS.” (Kings I 8:12)

GOD DOES NOT ENTICE MAN: “Let no man say he is tempted, I am TEMPTED of God: for God cannot be tempted with evil, NEITHER TEMPTETH he any man.” (James 1:13)

Contradicted by the following verse:

  • “And it came to pass after these things, that God DID TEMPT Abraham…” (Genesis 22:1)

[Last but not least, the most notorious concept of the Trinity,] according to the Athanasian Creed[6]: ”The Father is God, the Son is God, and the Holy Ghost is God, and yet there are not three Gods but one God….”

In this Holy Trinity: “The three Persons are CO-EQUAL and CO-ETERNAL: all alike are UNCREATED and OMNIPOTENT.” (The Catholic Encyclopedia)

Thus, the Trinity is considered to be: “one God in three Persons.”

  • There is only one verse in the Bible that unequivocally supports this Christian dogma. and that is: “For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and Holy Ghost; and these three are one. ” (The First Epistle of John 5:7)

Dr. C.I. Scofield[7], D.D. (Doctor of Divinity), backed by eight other D.D.s in a footnote to this verse, opine: “IT IS GENERALLY AGREED THAT THIS VERSE HAS NO MANUSCRIPT AUTHORITY AND HAS BEEN INSERTED.”

The fundamentalist Christians still retain this fabrication whereas, in all the modem translations, including the Revised Standard Version (RSV) this pious fraud has been unceremoniously expunged, thus, confirming this Qur’anic refutation:

  • “Surely, disbelievers are those who said: “Allah is the third of the three (in a Trinity).” But there is no ilah (god) (none who has the right to be worshipped) but One Ilah (God -Allah). And if they cease not from what they say, verily, a painful torment will befall the disbelievers among them.” (Soorah Al-Ma’idah, 5:73)

(The above is an excerpt from the book ‘The Choice – Islam and Christianity’ by Ahmed Deedat)

Allahu A’lam (Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) knows best) and all Perfections belong to Allah, and all mistakes belong to me alone. May Allah (سبحانه و تعالى) forgive me, Ameen.


[1] (November 13, 1946 – January 5, 2019) was a Christian apologist and pastor who wrote a number of books and pamphlets. He criticized Islam and non-Evangelical Christian beliefs. (

[2] (1859–1927) was a Jesuit Chaldean Catholic priest, Orientalist and Theologian. (

[3] The Mt. Sinai Arabic Codex 151 is indeed a most exciting discovery. It appears to be the oldest Arabic translation of the Bible in existence which was done in 867 AD. It includes the Biblical text, marginal comments, lectionary notes, and glosses, as found in the manuscript. It was discovered at St. Catherine’s monastery in Mt. Sinai in the 1800s. (

[4] It is a group of seven long Arabic poems that are considered the best work of pre-Islamic Arabia. The name means ‘The Suspended Odes’ or ‘The Hanging Poems’ were written down in golden letters on scrolls of linen that were then hung, or “suspended” (muʿallaq), on the walls of the Kaʿbah. ( and Britannica Encyclopedia)

[5] The Newer Versions of the Bible have reduced the number to “seventy” only.

[6] Also known as Pseudo-Athanasian Creed or Quicunque Vult, is a Christian statement of belief focused on Trinitarian doctrine and Christology. (

[7] (August 19, 1843 – July 24, 1921) was an American theologian, minister, and writer whose best-selling annotated Bible popularized futurism and dispensationalism among fundamentalist Christians. (