Sahih صحیح (correct, right, genuine) Hadith in Al Bukhari on the government control of the textual history of the Qur’an

Narrated Zaid bin Thabit: Abu Bakr As-Siddiq sent for me when the people! of Yamama had been killed (i.e., a number of the Prophet’s Companions who fought against Musailama). (I went to him) and found ‘Umar bin Al-Khattab sitting with him. Abu Bakr then said (to me), “Umar has come to me and said: “Casualties were heavy among the Qurra’ of the! Qur’an (i.e. those who knew the Quran by heart) on the day of the Battle of Yalmama, and I am afraid that more heavy casualties may take place among the Qurra’ on other battlefields, whereby a large part of the Qur’an may be lost. Therefore I suggest, you (Abu Bakr) order that the Qur’an be collected.” I said to ‘Umar, “How can you do something which Allah’s Apostle did not do?” ‘Umar said, “By Allah, that is a good project. “Umar kept on urging me to accept his proposal till Allah opened my chest for it and I began to realize the good in the idea which ‘Umar had realized.” Then Abu Bakr said (to me). ‘You are a wise young man and we do not have any suspicion about you, and you used to write the Divine Inspiration for Allah’s Apostle. So you should search for (the fragmentary scripts of) the Qur’an and collect it in one book).” By Allah If they had ordered me to shift one of the mountains, it would not have been heavier for me than this ordering me to collect the Qur’an. Then I said to Abu Bakr, “How will you do something which Allah’s Apostle did not do?” Abu Bakr replied, “By Allah, it is a good project.” Abu Bakr kept on urging me to accept his idea until Allah opened my chest for what He had opened the chests of Abu Bakr and ‘Umar. So I started looking for the Qur’an and collecting it from (what was written on) palmed stalks, thin white stones and also from the men who knew it by heart, till I found the last Verse of Surat At-Tauba (Repentance) with Abi Khuzaima Al-Ansari, and I did not find it with anybody other than him. The Verse is: ‘Verily there has come unto you an Apostle (Muhammad) from amongst yourselves. It grieves him that you should receive any injury or difficulty..(till the end of Surat-Baraa’ (At-Tauba) (Surah 9.128-129) Then the complete manuscripts (copy) of the Qur’an remained with Abu Bakr till he died, then with ‘Umar till the end of his life, and then with Hafsa, the daughter of ‘Umar.

Narrated Anas bin Malik: Hudhaifa bin Al-Yaman came to Uthman at the time when the people of Sham and the people of Iraq were Waging war to conquer Arminya and Adharbijan. Hudhaifa was afraid of their (the people of Sham and Iraq) differences in the recitation of the Qur’an, so he said to ‘Uthman, “O chief of the Believers! Save this nation before they differ about the Book (Quran) as Jews and the Christians did before.” So ‘Uthman sent a message to Hafsa saying, “Send us the manuscripts of the Qur’an so that we may compile the Qur’anic materials in perfect copies and return the manuscripts to you.” Hafsa sent it to ‘Uthman. ‘Uthman then ordered Zaid bin Thabit, ‘Abdullah bin AzZubair, Said bin Al-As and ‘AbdurRahman bin Harith bin Hisham to rewrite the manuscripts in perfect copies. ‘Uthman said to the three Quraishi men, “In case you disagree with Zaid bin Thabit on any point in the Qur’an, then write it in the dialect of Quraish, the Qur’an was revealed in their tongue.” They did so, and when they had written many copies, ‘Uthman returned the original manuscripts to Hafsa. ‘Uthman sent to every Muslim province one copy of what they had copied, and ordered that all the other Qur’anic materials, whether written in fragmentary manuscripts or whole copies, be burnt. Said bin Thabit added, “A Verse from Surat Ahzab was missed by me when we copied the Qur’an and I used to hear Allah’s Apostle reciting it. So we searched for it and found it with Khuzaima bin Thabit Al-Ansari. (That Verse was): ‘Among the Believers are men who have been true in their covenant with Allah.’ (Surah 33.23)

Narrated Zaid bin Thabit: Abu Bakr sent for me and said, “You used to write the Divine Revelations for Allah’s Apostle : So you should search for (the Qur’an and collect) it.” I started searching for the Qur’an till I found the last two Verses of Surat At-Tauba with Abi Khuzaima Al-Ansari and I could not find these Verses with anybody other than him. (They were): ‘Verily there has come unto you an Apostle (Muhammad) from amongst yourselves. It grieves him that you should receive any injury or difficulty …’ (Surah 9.128-129)

Hadith, Sahih Al Bukhari Volume 6, Book 61, no. 509, 510, 511  (my embolding for emphasis)

What is better:  An honest look at the textual history and evidence of the earliest manuscripts by a freely transmitted text, under persecution until 313 AD, as in the NT, or a controlled text by the government and state of Islam with the power of the sword to enforce the new text, as in the Qur’an?

“I am afraid . . . that a large part ( کثیر )  will be lost”

Uthman ordered all other materials burnt

Dr. White debated Yusuf Ismail in Oct of 2013 in South Africa on two issues; on the transmission of the NT text and the textual history of the Qur’an.

The other parts of the debate on the Qur’an are not up yet, as far as I know.  (part of that was up earlier, but I noticed it was removed.  I think they are trying to get them in the right formats.)  When they are all available in the right order, I will make necessary changes.

Below is the part on the NT transmission.

Addendum:  January 22, 2014

The full debate is here: The Qur’an part begins at 1:25:22

About Ken Temple

I am a follower of Jesus Christ. I am a sinner who has been saved by the grace of God alone (Ephesians 2:8-9), through faith alone (Galatians 2:16; Romans 3:28; 4:1-16), in Christ alone (John 14:6). But a true faith does not stay alone, it should result in change, fruit, good works, and deeper levels of repentance and hatred of my own sins of selfishness and pride. I am not better than you! I still make mistakes and sin, but the Lord is working on me, conforming me to His character. (Romans 8:28-29; 2 Corinthians 3:16-18) When I do sin, I hate the sin as it is an affront to God, and seek His forgiveness in repentance. (Mark 1:15; 2 Corinthians 7:7-10; Colossians 3:5-16 ) Praise God for His love for sinners (Romans 5:8), shown by the voluntary coming of Christ and His freely laying down His life for us (John 10:18), becoming flesh/human (John 1:1-5; 1:14; Philippians 2:5-8), dying for sins of people from all nations, tribes, and cultures (Revelation 5:9), on the cross, in history, rising from the dead (Romans 10:9-10; Matthew 28, Mark 16:1-8; Luke 24; John 20-21; 1 Corinthians chapter 15). His resurrection from the dead proved that Jesus is the Messiah, the eternal Son of God, the word of God from eternity past; and that He was all the gospels say He was and that He is truth and the life and the way to salvation. (John 14:6)
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11 Responses to Sahih صحیح (correct, right, genuine) Hadith in Al Bukhari on the government control of the textual history of the Qur’an

  1. Jesus says:

    The very narration u posted shows how accurately the Quran was preserved . The 1st part which u highlighted shows that the Quran was preserved BEFORE the people who know it by heart died . Next part shows how the Muslims were concerned about the Quran going the way of Bible , so they acted quickly and preserved it. Last but not the least , Uthman did not burn the Quran to destroy it , it was back then a way of disposing a thing considered sacred .No scholar of the Quran says that Uthman destroyed the Quran .

    Coming to the Bible , we see exactly the opposite , we see changes within the Gospels , we have changes in the MSS , we have forged letters etc , i can just go on .

    • Ken Temple says:

      Human mistakes of the copyists of the NT manuscripts are all out in the open for all to investigate – honesty, openness, no fear of truth or history or archeology. No, there are no forged letters of the NT. 2 Peter was either written by Peter or dictated orally to a student while he was in prison awaiting his excecution under Nero around 67 AD. (2 Peter 1:12-21)

      But the Qur’an – Since Uthman burned the rest, there is no way to find out what Ubai Ibn Kaab had or Ibn Masood or other discrepensies in Ahadith – the goat that ate some of the Qur’an that Aisha reported, etc.

      The point is the honesty with history is more credible than a government with the power of the sword (Islamic Caliphate) that could force and cover up questions and problems. The burning destroyed the evidence of the textual history from Muhammad’s oral Qira’at (reciting) to Uthman.

      • Jesus says:

        The same old apologetic ignorance all over ! .The New Testament has many theologically motivated alterations , all scholars say the same , wake up and smell the coffee.There are forged letters in the N.T , again , all scholars agree .Coming to Ubay Ibn Kaab had or Ibn Masood , no scholar says that they had a separate Quran . Unfortunately u did not know that Ubay himself was in the committee which was appointed by Uthman .

        Yawn ………. bring some good academic points so that we can have some good discussion rather than bringing skewed apologetics.

  2. Jesus says:

    Coming to the debate……….Yusuf was again top on ! , quoting scholars to arguing logically , this is again a bad loss for White on the same topic , 1st against Ehrman .Its not his fault , it is the bad state which the New Testament is in

  3. Ken Temple says:

    Since there is not even a critical text of the Qur’an (like the NT) yet, that shows all the variants for all to see in honesty and openness; this raises serious questions.

    Also, with the whole history of Islam being a state government unity of religion and politics – from the Hegira in 622 Ad all the way up until 1924 when Mustapha Kemal Ataturk abolished the Caliphate and all those centuries the text was protected by power of government and punishments of Sharia law (if questioned or criticized) and published and most regular people did not even know of manuscript copying errors, etc. They had the power of the sword and questioning and criticizing the Qur’an in the Muslim world can get a person in deep trouble, even sometimes execution, this also raises serious questions and problems.

    This is a good start, and becoming more and more accessible to the common man.

  4. Sam Shamoun says:

    Note: This comment was in response to the Unitarian claim that Matthew 28:19 is not in the original gospel of Matthew, quoting from Eusebius. Sam provides another writing of Eusebius. This is in an article that Paul Bilal Williams put up at his website, here. Paul even admitted that I had refuted point # 1 in his article. I think I then refuted the rest of the Unitarian article. Ken Temple
    Sam’s comment:

    Here is a quote from Eusebius quoting the the orthodox version of Matthew 28:19:

    2. As we have received from the Bishops who preceded us, and in our first catechisings, and when we received the Holy Laver, and as we have learned from the divine Scriptures, and as we believed and taught in the presbytery, and in the Episcopate itself, so believing also at the time present, we report to you our faith, and it is this :—

    3. We believe in One God, the Father Almighty, the Maker of all things visible and invisible. And in One Lord Jesus Christ, the Word of God, God from God, Light from Light, Life from Life, Son Only-begotten, first-born of every creature, before all the ages, begotten from the Father, by Whom also all things were made; Who for our salvation was made flesh, and lived among men, and suffered, and rose again the third day, and ascended to the Father, and will come again in glory to judge the quick and dead. And we believe also in One Holy Spirit: believing each of these to be and to exist, the Father truly Father, and the Son truly Son, and the Holy Spirit truly Holy Spirit, as also our Lord, sending forth His disciples for the preaching, said, Go teach all nations, baptizing them in the Name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit Matthew 28:19. Concerning Whom we confidently affirm that so we hold, and so we think, and so we have held aforetime, and we maintain this faith unto the death, anathematizing every godless heresy. That this we have ever thought from our heart and soul, from the time we recollect ourselves, and now think and say in truth, before God Almighty and our Lord Jesus Christ do we witness, being able by proofs to show and to convince you, that, even in times past, such has been our belief and preaching. Letter of Eusebius of Cæsarea to the people of his Diocese:

  5. Ken Temple says:

    That’s great; especially the quote by Bart Ehrman.

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