Criteria for a True Scripture
We could try to use reason and logic to find out which of the existing messages or scriptures may be considered as being inspired by the true God. In doing so, we must remember the attributes of God are absolute, that He must be One and Unique, All-Powerful, All-Knowing Creator of the universe.
For the true scripture to be true and not false and for it to be a God’s message or inspired by God, it must logically meet certain standards or criteria.
- The scripture should not attribute to God anything which goes against His unique nature. It should not say, for example, that God was ever a man or that there existed other gods or goddesses with Him, or that there is an evil being which has power equal to His.
- It should not attribute to any created being anything which pertains only to God. It should not say, for example that any person knows or can know everything or that any person has the power to do anything and everything.
- It should completely deny to anyone or anything, apart from the Creator, the right to be worshipped and obeyed.
- No part of the scripture should contradict another part.
- The scripture should not attribute major sins or vices to the persons whom Got chose for conveying His guidance, because this would be just like saying that the message conveyed was not worthy to be followed or that God was ignorant or stupid in choosing such a person.
- The person claiming to have received the scriptures should be a person of whom no evil or sin is known and who is completely honest and truthful. He must be a person who claim no rewards or benefit for himself from people.
(Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, even before his prophethood, has the unchallenged reputation of a man who was always truthful and trustworthy. Tor these, he was known as As-Saadiq and Al-Amiin respectively.)
Most of the scriptures do not meet these standards. They contain many stories which speak of God and man and the universe often in quite fantastic terms. Here is not a place to go into details of the scriptures. However, it can be safely said that the Qur’an is the only scripture exist which meet these standards.
Why do scriptures not meet or fall short of these standards? How do we account for the fantastic statements and stories about God and His creation in these ‘holy’ scriptures? Is it because they belong to an earlier, more primitive stage in human history when man might have been ignorant and searching about on his own for explanations about life and the universe? (The ONLY way in which the people could be said as primitive was in the skills they possessed and the tools they used for living and survival.)
The Qur’an itself mentions that from the beginning, mankind has been given knowledge and guidance from God. It mention that, when God created the first man, Adam, He “taught Adam the names of all things” ~ Qur’an 2:31. It also states that the Most Gracious God “created man and imparted him articulate thought and speech” ~ Qur’an 55:3-9.