Sectarian attack on Masjid al-Aqsa identity answered.
Explanation of Bani-Israel Verse (17:1)
The situation in Middle East, the conduct of the Zionist oppression army and
the resulting hardships on innocent unarmed Palestinian Muslims is an
established fact, which is staring the so-called "Civilized" World in the
face. The situation is deteriorating day by day with seemingly no signs of a
The need of the hour is the emergence of a sense of unity among Muslims and
the portrayal of the viewpoint of Palestinian people, regarding Jerusalem
and other matters, with one united voice of all the Muslims before
Unfortunately, this objective, though being noble, is being obstructed
(intentionally or unintentionally) by some people within the ranks of the
(As an example to this sad scenario, see the case of Mr. Shahid Mahmud who,)
In his latest email, Mr. Shahid Mahmud is of the opinion that the
present-day Masjid-e-Aqsa of Jerusalem is NOT the one, which has been
mentioned by Al Qur'an 17/1. On the other hand, this Qur'anic Masjid-e-Aqsa
(according to him) is actually none other than the Masjid-e-Nabvi of Madina.
For his email mentioned above, please take a look at your archives of stored
emails, which I will not be attaching with this message for reasons of
brevity. However, I will be mentioning his arguments point-wise, and will
then give my comments on them.
1- A BASIC QUESTION
Before I present his arguments (about his opinion, that the present-day
Masjid-e-Aqsa is NOT the Masjid-e-Aqsa, which has been mentioned by Surah
Bani Isra'eel: 1, but is none other than the Masjid-e-Nabvi), let me ask him
a basic question.
According to your (Mr. Shahid Mahmud's) view the present-day Masjid-e-Aqsa
of Jerusalem is NOT mentioned in 17/1 of Al Qur'an. If you believe your
opinion to be correct, then tell us:
* Why was "Masjid-e-Aqsa" of today constructed at its particular location in
* The Jews believe that, on the site of Masjid-e-Aqsa, stood their Temple
for about 800 years in the distant past. The Jews are ALSO eager to demolish
the present-day Masjid-e-Aqsa and re-built their temple.
If you believe your opinion to be correct, then tell us WHAT is the case of
Palestinian Muslims regarding Masjid-e-Aqsa?
How are they going to defend the legitimacy of the present-day Masjid-e-Aqsa
and its location?
On what basis will the Palestinian Muslims justify the lawfulness of the
existence of the present-day Masjid-e-Aqsa at its location, as we know of it
Is this (i.e. your opinion about Al Aqsa) not like offering Masjid-e-Aqsa to
the Jews literally in a plate for them to demolish it?
Just think for a while about what you are saying and then evaluate your
stance, which is DEFINITELY hostile towards the Muslims and friendly towards
2- CONTRARY TO "ISLAMIC DAWN" e-GROUP'S POLICY
The Moderator of the e-Group called Islamic Dawn (on which Mr. Mahmud's
above-mentioned email was intended to appear) states in its official policy
(refer to: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/IslamicDawn/message/1810), and I quote:
"...For last few weeks stretching to more than a month, the discussion (on Islamic Dawn)
has been degenerated into shouting match with traditionalists resorting to the usual
technique of labeling. The Muslims on the list who uphold Quran, in spite of showing a lot of
patience, found themselves doing the same......We (have) decided that there is a need to
rethink the path we have taken lately and came to the conclusion that some changes are in
Now, the point to be noted is that, in his above-mentioned email, Mr. Mahmud
has REPEATEDLY addressed his opponents in the discussion as, and I quote:
".....allow me to show that how brain-dead the Abrogationists are......"
"....I had thought that Muslims brothers would be able to provide adequate answer to the
allegation by the Abrogationists..."
[About the second quote, do you (i.e. the readers) recall Mirza Ghulam Ahmad
Qadiani, who used to refer to his followers as "Muslims" while the Muslims
in general as "Kafir"?].
Then, after resorting to this "usual" technique of "labeling", Mr. Mahmud
says to the Moderator of Islamic Dawn, and I quote:
"Moderator Islamic Dawn, kindly post this email on the list if it meets the new policy of the
Now, keeping the above-mentioned "new" policy in mind, and also the fact
that Mr. Mahmud, HIMSELF, is (or has been) one of the moderators in the
Moderator-Committee of Islamic Dawn, the question which ought to be asked
* The "Traditionalists" use the "usual" technique of "labeling", says
Moderator # 1 of Islamic Dawn.
Well, who's using this "usual" technique of "labeling", by calling others as
"abrogationists" and is further hoping that such an email may stand a chance
to appear on Islamic Dawn, despite the so-called "new" policy of Islamic
Dawn, which these two Moderators (including Mr. Mahmud) THEMSELVES have
Isn't he (Mr. Mahmud), the Moderator # 2 of Islamic Dawn? Can we see a split
in the views of Moderator # 1 and Moderator # 2. Looks like this "new"
policy is really going to work, when Mr. Mahmud is around...
3- ANSWERS TO MR. MAHMUD'S QUESTIONS
Mr. Mahmud puts his basic question as:
"Which place does this verse (i.e. 17/1) refers to while speaking of the ‘Furthest Mosque’?
Does it refer to Jerusalem and Masjid-e-Aqsa, built much later, after the Messenger(pbuh)
had died. This is the dogma put forward by the Abrogationists."
The fundamental mistake, which Mr. Mahmud commits in the above question
(which makes him conclude that, calling the present-day Masjid-e-Aqsa as the
one, which is mentioned by 17/1, is a "dogma put forward by the Abrogationists") is
that he assumes Al Islam to be a NEW religion, "invented" by Muhammad, peace
be upon him.
Westerners have the general tendency of studying Islam in seclusion of the
traditions of the prophets of God preceding Muhammad, peace be upon him.
This is a mistake, which is repeated by those Muslims, who are not properly
familiar with Al Islam.
Islam is NOT a new religion. It has never claimed to be so. The Qur'an has
clearly stated that Islam was the religion taught by all the prophets of
God. In fact, the "Deen" revived by Prophet Moses was NOT Judaism --- it was
Al Islam, with SAME principles, but DIFFERENT Sharia.
The Islamic tradition, thus, is a CONTINUATION of the correct traditions of
(what is commonly known as) Judaism. Hence it would follow, that the
position of Jerusalem and Masjid-e-Aqsa in Islam is the same as it is in
Judaism, merely on the grounds that Islam is actually in continuation of the
true traditions of the prophets of God – including Moses, David, Solomon,
John and Jesus (peace be upon them).
It would also follow from the above-mentioned principle, that the structure,
which Jews called "Temple" was actually a "Mosque", constructed by Prophet
Solomon from the worship of ONE God. The Holy Qur'an confirms this by
referring to that structure as a "MOSQUE" in the same Surah:
"If ye do good, ye do good for your own souls, and if ye do evil, it is for them (in like
manner). So when the time of the SECOND (of the JUDGEMENTS *) came, (We roused
against you others of our slaves) to ravage you, and to enter the Temple, even as they
entered it the FIRST TIME (**), and to lay waste all that they conquered with an utter
[17/7] (Translation by Pickthall).
* "Second Judgment" refers to the Judgment of Allah about denouncing Bani Isra'eel from the post of
"leadership of the nations" owing to the distortion of their Deen, and their final attempt of crucifixion of
Prophet Jesus. The event referred to above is the attack on Jerusalem by Romans under Titus in 70 CE.
** "As they entered the FIRST TIME" refers to attack on Jerusalem by Babylonians under
Nebuchadnezzar in 586 BC. At that time, Allah had decided to give one more chance to the Jews, who
finally were able to return only 50 years later under the leadership of peformers like Nechemiah, who
corrected some of their deviations fro Al Islam and re-built the Mosque.
After this SECOND JUDGMENT, there was no way for Jews to return to Al Islam,
which was taught by Prophet Moses, because they had stepped onto the path of
"Judaism", with each step taking them further away from Al Islam.
To get some idea of the extent of distortion, which the Jews had done to
their Deen and their Mosque, refer to a statement of Prophet Jesus, who is
reported to have said about the Jewish attempts of distortion of Solomon's
"It is written, that My house will be called a house of prayer (+), but you are making it a den
of robbers." [Matt. 21:13].
(+) Jesus is referring to Isa. 56:7: "....for My house will be called house of prayer for all
"My house" refers to "the Solomon's Mosque constructed for Almighty's worship."
This statement reported to have said by Prophet Jesus describes what the
Jews had done to the Masjid of Solomon.
Regarding verse 17/1, and its mentioning of Masjid-e-Aqsa, TWO things about
it must be closely pondered upon:
(a) The Qur'an calls it "Masjid-e-Aqsa", which literally means "The Farthest
Mosque" (Yusuf Ali), or "Far distant place of worship" (Pickthall). It is an
obvious fact that Jerusalem was comparatively farther from Mecca than
Medina. In words of Maulana Ameen Ehsen Islahi, Jerusalem was at least at a
distance of 40 days of travelling from Mecca in the conditions of 7th
century Arabia [SOURCE: "Tadabbur-ul-Qur'an", Vol. 4, pp. 474, Sept. 1998, Faran
Lahore], and hence, out of Masjid-e-Nabvi (or any other mosque in Medina) AND
Al Haram Al Sharif in Jerusalem, the LATTER is the "far distant place of
(b) The Qur'an describes Masjid-e-Aqsa as one, whose precincts or environs
wre blessed by Allah. According to Qur'an itself, Palestine is a "Blessed
land", since the time of previous Prophets like Hazra'at Ibraheem and Loot:
"And WE delivered him (Abraham) and his nephew (Lut), (and directed them) to the LAND
which WE have BLESSED for the nations". [21/71] (Yusuf Ali).
"(It was Our power that made) the violent (unruly) wind flow (tamely) for Solomon, To his
order, To the LAND which We had BLESSED: For We do know all things." [21/81] (Yusuf
In the words of Bible, we find the mentioning of this blessedness in the
"(The Lord said) so I have come down to rescue them (Bani Isra'eel) from the hand of the
Egyptians and to bring them up out of that land, into a good and spacious land -- a land
flowing with milk and honey." [Exo. 3:8]
In Talmud, we find passages like the following one, which describe the
blessedness of the land of Palestine:
Rabbi Zeira, one of the leading Sages in Babylon, disputed the opinion of a colleague, Rabbi
Eila, in regard to a legal matter concerning inheritance. After Rabbi Zeira finally realized his
dream of settling in Eretz Yisrael (The land of Palestine) he reconsidered his position and
concurred with that of Rabbi Eila. "This is conclusive proof," exclaimed Rabbi Zeira, "that the
very air of Eretz Yisrael makes one wiser." [Bava Basra 158b]
So, the characteristic of "Masjid-e-Aqsa", as mentioned by 17/1 is one,
whose precincts or environs were blessed by Allah.
With all these citations of the Blessedness of the Land of Palestine in
Qur'an and the sacred Jewish literature, there is NO mentioning of
blessedness of Medina in any revealed document BEFORE the Hijrah of our
Prophet, peace be upon him.
Also keeping this point in mind that Surah Bani Isra'eel was revealed an
year before the Hijrah (or about 619 CE), how could it have been pointing to
some other Mosque than Solomon's Mosque of Jerusalem?
So this whole point is irrelevant that the Masjid-e-Aqsa of today was built
by the son Al-Walid of Abdul Malik ibn Marwan in 705 CE. On the other hand,
it is the Solomon's Masjid (at the same place), which is being referred to
as "Masjid-e-Aqsa" by 17/1 owing to the simple reason that Al Islam is the
religion taught by all the prophets and the The Islamic tradition is a
CONTINUATION of the correct traditions of (what is commonly known as)
The above-mentioned point is further reinforced when the Qur'an, ITSELF,
refers to Solomon's Temple as a "MASJID" in 17/7.
4- MR. MAHMUD QUOTING ALLAMA PERVEZ
Mr. Mahmud has given the following TWO quotations from Allama Pervez's
"Qur'ani Faislay" to strengthen his point, that "Masjid-e-Aqsa" is in fact
"Masjid-e-Nabvi" of Medina.
* (Mr. Mahmud quoting Pervez says that) According to Bukhari (part 15, page 476) the spot
on which the Masjid-e-Nabwi was constructed, prayer was being regularly held before the
arrival of the Messenger(pbuh).
* (Mr. Mahmud quoting Pervez says that) in Fatheulbari (part 15, page 476) that wherever
Arabs became Muslims in and around Madina, they started establishing regular prayer.
Both of the above-mentioned quotations (if they exist) are HADITH.
First of all, Mr. Mahmud should have thought for a while about what he is
writing, since, according to these quotations, BOTH Sahih Bukhari and
Fath-ul-Bari have written on the SAME PAGE (i.e. part 15, page 476) about
the SAME thing. Quite a coincidence!
The fact, on the other hand, is that there are NO such reference in BOTH of
these works, neither at the said pages, nor at the relevant chapters.
I have checked the following editions of both of these works:
Sahih Bukhari, Vol. 2, Maktaba Rehmania Lahore, Sept. 1985, Pa'ara 15,
Fath-ul-Bari Ba Shrah Sahih Bukhari, Al Juz As Sa'abey, Pa'ara 15, pp.
83-222, Jamia Al Azhar, Al Misr, 1348H.
I have mentioned the detailed references, since Pervez sahib, in his
"Qur'ani Faislay" has suggested the same ones to be seen for the supposed
No such narrations in either of these sources saying that prayer was
being regularly held in Medina before the arrival of the Messenger(pbuh). Of
course I do acknowledge my limited ability to study and will be grateful if
Mr. Mahmud would come up with these narrations in the specified works.
5- ALLAMA PERVEZ'S CITATION OF WAFA-UL-WAFA:
This is something from the same book (and same page #) of Allama Pervez,
which Mr. Mahmud forgot to mention in his email. So let me facilitate him:
Allama Pervez quotes Wafa-ul-Wafa (Vol. 1 pg. 232) writing that the spot on
which the Masjid-e-Nabwi was constructed, prayer was being regularly held
before the arrival of the Messenger.
There is no such narration NEITHER at the specified location, NOR in the
whole Vol. 1 of the said book. However, I do acknowledge my limited ability
to study and will be grateful if Mr. Muhammad would come up with this
narration in the specified work.
The CLOSEST MATCH, which I have been able to find in Wafa-ul-Wafa is the
following tradition in its exact words:
SOURCE: Wafa-ul-Wafa, Vol. 1, by Noor-ud-Din Ali b. Ahmad Al Misri Alsamhudi, pp. 250, 251.
As can be seen from this Hadith, it says that prior to Hijrah, some
companions of the Prophet, peace be upon him, stayed in Medina and occupied
themselves in the construction of a mosque and when the Prophet, peace be
upon him, and his companions, when reached "Quba", they said their prayers
in the mosque, FACING TOWARDS Bait-ul-Maqdas (Jerusalem).
If we are to believe this Hadith, it only confirms the blessedness of
Bait-ul-Maqdas, since IF there was a mosque built prior to Hijrah, the
prayers in it were being said while facing towards JERUSALEM.
6- WHO SAYS THAT MASJID-E-AQSA IS NOT IN JERUSALEM?
The fact of the matter is that, never in the 1400 years history of Muslim
Ummah, has any group of Muslims suggested that Masjid-e-Aqsa is NOT the one
in Jerusalem. There is consensus between the ENTIRE Ummah, in every epoch
since the revelation of Surah 17, that the Solomon's Mosque in Jerusalem is
in fact Masjid-e-Aqsa, which is mentioned by 17/1.
This fact is so undeniable that the Christian pilgrims in the Middle Ages
(around 11th century) also referred to Al Haram Al Sharif as "Templum
Domini", or Temple of the Lord.
In the whole spectrum of history, there has been ONE personality, who
claimed that Masjid-e-Aqsa is NOT the one in Jerusalem.
Do you know who that personality was??
He was Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani....
Read with open eyes, what Mirza sahib has to say:
"The verse of Quran: 'Praise be to Allah, who took his servant on the Night Journey from
Masjid Haram to Masjid Aqsa', in true and literal sense, (Masjid Aqsa) is referring to the
mosque of the Promised Messiah (in Qadian and not Jerusalem)."
SOURCES: (Khutba-Ilhamia, Roohany Khazaen, Vol. 16, P. 21;
Collection of Posters, Vol. 3, P. 286;
Collection of donations for Minaret-ul-Maseeh 10 years after claiming to be Maseeh)
"The Prophet (pbuh) went from Masjid-e-Haram to Mashid-e-Aqsa in his Miraj (ascension to
heaven) - the Masjid-e-Aqsa mentioned there is the very mosque in Qadian on the Eastern
side, the extreme side of Qadian. God's word names this place mubarak (the blessed)."
SOURCE: Khutba-Ilhamia, Roohany Khazaen, Vol. 16, P. 22.
"Al-Majid-ul-Aqsa is the Mosque which has been built by the Promised Messiah in Qadian.
(not in Jerusalem)"
SOURCE: Anwar-e-Khilafat, P. 117
Can Mr. Mahmud realize now, in which category is he forcing himself, when
making such a claim about Masjid-e-Aqsa??
I hope I have clearly demonstrated with the help of authentic sources that
the present-day Masjid-e-Aqsa in Jersualem in indeed the one, when Qur'an
mentions in 17/1.
All Muslims should be united on this bona fide interpretation of Qur'an and
support the Palestinian Muslims.
2001-07-31 Tue 18:34ct