The Qur’an is the only book in Islam for which divine inspiration has been recognized by all Muslims. Yet, the Qur’an itself testifies that Muhammad performed no supernatural miracles. The miracle claims for Muhammad do not occur in the Qur’an but in the Hadith. This is a serious contradiction in Islam because if Muhammad did really perform miracles as Muslims claim, these supernatural acts would have been recorded in the Qur’an. Instead, the Qur’an reveals that whenever Muhammad was asked by his contemporaries to perform miracles, he either remained silent or confessed that he could not do so because he was just an ordinary human without any special powers. The Qur’an contains more than twenty such passages expressing Muhammad’s inability to perform miracles. The most explicit of this admission is found in the following Qur’anic verses. Two translations of this Surah are provided below:
Surah 17:90-93: They said, “We will not believe you unless you cause a spring to gush out of the ground. “Or unless you own a garden of date palms and grapes, with rivers running through it. “Or unless you cause masses from the sky, as you claimed, to fall on us. Or unless you bring God and the angels before our eyes. “Or unless you own a luxurious mansion, or unless you climb into the sky. Even if you do climb, we will not believe unless you bring a book that we can read.” Say, “Glory be to my Lord. Am I any more than a human messenger?” (Khalifa)
They say, “We will not believe in you, until you cause a spring to gush forth for us from the earth, “Or until you have a garden of date trees and vines, and cause rivers to gush forth in their presence, carrying abundant water, “Or you cause the sky to fall into pieces on us as you say, or you bring God and the angels before us face to face. “Or you have a house adorned with gold, or you raise a ladder into the universe. No, we will not even believe in your raising a ladder until you bring down to us a book that we can read.” Say, “Glory to my Lord. Am I not only a human being, a messenger?” (Bilal Muhammad)
The following Surahs testify not only Muhammad’s failure to perform miracles but they also reveal that just like any ordinary person, he had no special knowledge of any kind:
Surah 10:20: They (unbelievers) say, “Why has his Lord not given him some miracles to (support his claim of being His Messenger)?” Say “(The knowledge) of the unseen certainly belongs to God. Wait and I too shall be waiting with you. (M. Sarwar)
Surah 67:25-26: They ask, when will this promise be fulfilled, if you are truthful? Say, God alone has knowledge of that; and I am only a plain warner. (W. Khan)
Time and again, Muhammad confessed that he was “only a plain warner.” The next following Qur’anic verse is very essential for Muslims to understand because it provides the reason why Muhammad could not have performed miracles of any kind. It specifically reveals that Muhammad was not in the same category as those who perform miracles. This is established by the very reason Allah himself gave as to why Muhammad could not perform miracles when his contemporaries demanded for one. Allah stated: “Muhammad you are only a warner.” The term “only” clearly shows that Muhammad was not qualified to perform miracles.
Surah 13:7: The unbelievers say, “Why has God not sent him, (Muhammad), some miracles.” Muhammad, you are only a warner. For every nation there is a guide. (M. Sarwar)
The reason for Muhammad’s inability to perform miracles is clearly stated in the Qur’an. It says it is because he was “only a warner.” By stating this, the Qur’an presupposes that the function of Muhammad as “only a warner” does not include the requirement to perform miracles as it was in the case of those with a higher calling. And Allah commands Muhammad to give this very same reason to his contemporaries as a clarification for his inability to perform miracles:
Surah 29:50: And they say: Why are not signs sent down upon him from his Lord? Say: The signs are only with Allah, and I am only a plain warner. (Shakir)
As it can be noted, these Qur’anic verses clearly indicate that performing miracles was not one of the functions of Muhammad. However, the reason why Muhammad’s contemporaries demanded for miracles was because he had acknowledged the manifestation of powerful miraculous works by the “ancient Prophets” who were sent by God. But, Muhammad made a colossal error by comparing himself to Moses and Jesus – two of the greatest miracle workers. So when he claimed to speak in God’s name, they wanted divine assurance.
Surah 21:5: They have said, “It, (the Qur’an), is only the result of some confused dreams. He is only a poet. He should show us some miracles, as the ancient Prophets had done.” (M. Sarwar)
Even though the Qur’an was revealed in their own native tongue, the Quraysh contemporaries of Muhammad were not impressed by it. Even so, they had sworn that in the event if Muhammad performed “a miracle” before them, they would then believe the messages of the Qur’an. Just a single miracle was sufficient for them.
Surah 6:109: They swear by Allah that if a miracle comes to them, they would surely believe in it (the Book). Say, “All miracles are with Allah. What can make you understand that even if a physical miracle came to them, they will find other excuses and still not believe? (Shabbir Ahmed)
Their persistence in demanding miracles, and their sworn promises that in the event of one they would believe, gradually engendered the feeling of hope in the depths of Muhammad’s inner soul. He felt that Allah would certainly send a miraculous confirmation of his prophethood, which would then awe every objector into belief. But none came. And doubts began to set in into Muhammad’s heart.
The allegations regarding the doubts of Muhammad are not mere conjectures or hypotheses. They are based on facts that can be substantiated by the Qur’an itself. Numerous Qur’anic passages show that Muhammad experienced a mood of uncertainty when no miraculous sign from Allah came to confirm his mission. The most explicit passage to evidence this is stated in the following Qur’anic verses:
Surah 10:94-95: If thou wert in doubt as to what We have revealed unto thee, then ask those who have been reading the Book from before thee: the Truth hath indeed come to thee from thy Lord: So be in no wise of those in doubt. Nor be of those who reject the signs of Allah, or thou shalt be of those who perish. (Yusuf Ali)
And if thou (Muhammad) art in doubt concerning that which We reveal unto thee, then question those who read the Scripture (that was) before thee. Verily the Truth from thy Lord hath come unto thee. So be not thou of the waverers. And be not thou of those who deny the revelations of Allah, for then wert thou of the losers. (Pickthall)
It can be seen that Muhammad underwent some sort of an inner spiritual crisis when he lost hope of a miraculous sign. And Allah warned him not to become like those who deny his revelations. Allah even found it necessary to reprimand him:
Surah 11:12: Then, it may be that you will give up part of what is revealed to you and your breast will become straitened by it because they say: Why has not a treasure been sent down upon him or an angel come with him? You are only a warner; and Allah is custodian over all things. (Shakir)
You may feel the inclination to leave aside a part of what is revealed to you and you may be distressed because they say, ‘Why has no treasure been sent down to him, why has no angel come with him?’ But you are only to give warning. God is the guardian of all things. (W. Khan)
And Allah also rebuked Muhammad:
Surah 6:35: If their turning away is hard on you, then go down a tunnel deep into the earth, if you can, or climb up a ladder into heaven, and bring them a Sign. If Allah had wanted to He would have gathered them all to guidance. So do not be among the ignorant. (A. Bewley)
Muslims who attribute phenomenal status to Muhammad and believe that Allah has set him on a higher plane of knowledge than the previous prophets should seriously consider the following Qur’anic verse. Here Muhammad was commanded by Allah to make the following confession regarding his limitations as a warner:
Surah 7:188: Say: I do not control any benefit or harm for my own soul except as Allah please; and had I known the unseen I would have had much of good and no evil would have touched me; I am nothing but a warner and the giver of good news to a people who believe. (Shakir)
Despite the Qur’an’s clear acknowledgment of the absence of any supernatural power, Muslims still claim that their Prophet was a miracle worker. Of course, such claims could not be made during the lifetime of Muhammad. So it was only after his death when rumors began to be circulated by Muslim miracle-mongers that he had performed all sorts of miraculous marvels. The greater the distance in time and space, the more the mass of fiction grew. Even though the learned among the scholars of Islam knew that these claims cannot be true since they contradict the Qur’an, they remained silent.
As testified in the above Qur’anic verses, Muhammad denied any possession of supernatural powers. If he had actually performed the miracles attributed to him by the miracle-mongers in the Hadiths, then how are we to understand the denial of all such occurrences in the above Qur’anic verses? It is hard to believe why these miracle-mongers could not see that in their enthusiasm to validate Muhammad as a true Prophet of God, they are actually invalidating the Qur’an. What is worth mentioning here is the fact that even Muslim scholars, who read the Qur’an and who knew Arabic well enough to understand its meanings, remained captive to these delusions which directly conflicted with the explicit teachings of the Qur’an.
For example, Qadi ‘Iyad, (1088 C.E.-1149 C.E.), an Andalusian judge, theologian, and genealogist, wrote a book in praise of Muhammad. He stated that whenever the Prophet passed a place, the stones and trees would walk up and say, “Peace be upon you, O Apostle of God!”
Without hesitation, Muslims today eagerly believe that such miracles did occur. But how do they then reconcile this conviction of theirs with the Qur’anic verses that testify that no miracles occurred when the Quraysh polytheists refused to believe without one? The sort of miracle that those Qurayshites demanded of Muhammad was relatively minor. They only wanted Muhammad to make water gush out of the ground or to flow out from a rock. If stones actually uttered greetings to Muhammad, would not that be a convincing reason for the Quraysh to accept Muhammad as a prophet of God?
The only stone that greeted Muhammad was the one that struck him on his mouth and injured him at the battle of Uhud.  Maybe this particular stone was an infidel. If trees walked up to Muhammad and greeted him, would not the unbelievers look at him in awe and immediately accept him as a Prophet of God? Instead, Muhammad’s contemporaries who actually knew him viewed him not as a miracle worker but as madman:
Surah 15:6: “And they say: O thou unto whom the Reminder is revealed, lo! Thou art indeed a madman!” (Pickthall)
Surah 37:36: And said: Shall we forsake our gods for a mad poet? (Pickthall)
Surah 44:14: Yet they turn away from him and say: “Tutored (by others), a man possessed.” (Yusuf Ali)
Let us now carefully analyze the following Qur’anic verses.
Surah 29:50-51: And they say: Why are not signs sent down upon him from his Lord? Say: The signs are only with Allah, and I am only a plain warner. Is it not enough for them that We have revealed to you the Book which is recited to them? Most surely there is mercy in this and a reminder for a people who believe. (Shakir)
Surah 29:51: “Is it not enough for them that We have sent down unto thee the Scripture which is read unto them?” (Pickthall)
The above Qur’anic verses provide further evidences that prove Allah did not empower Muhammad with the ability to perform miracles. Instead of miracles, the above Qur’anic verses testify that Muhammad was given the Qur’an. And Allah asks rhetorically, “Is it not enough?” Therefore, any claim that Muhammad actually performed miracles would now imply that the Qur’an is indeed “not enough.” It also means that Allah was wrong in his initial conclusion that the Qur’an alone is sufficient for the outworking and accomplishment of the task assigned to Muhammad.
In his esteemed work, “Message of the Qur’an,” the late Sunni scholar Muhammad Asad wrote his scholarly interpretation of Surah 29:51. He candidly admitted:
This highly elliptic sentence has a fundamental bearing on the purport of the Qur’an as a whole. In many places the Qur’an stresses the fact that the Prophet Muhammad, despite his being the last and greatest of God’s apostles, was not empowered to perform miracles similar to those with which the earlier prophets are said to have reinforced their verbal messages. His only miracle was and is the Qur’an itself – a message perfect in its lucidity and ethical comprehensiveness, destined for all times and all stages of human development, addressed not merely to the feelings but also to the minds of men, open to everyone, whatever his race or social environment, and bound to remain unchanged forever. (Asad, Message of the Qur’an p. 427, fn. 71, – Dar Al-Andalus Limited 3 Library Ramp, Gibraltar 1993)
And this fact is also substantiated by the most authentic Hadith in the Muslim world:
Sahih Bukhari, Volume 9, Book 92, Number 379:
Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, “There was no prophet among the prophets but was given miracles because of which people had security or had belief, but what I was given was the Divine Inspiration which Allah revealed to me. So I hope that my followers will be more than those of any other prophet on the Day of Resurrection.”
This admission by Muhammad shows clearly that he did not perform any miracles. This exposes all the lies that were created about him by his followers after his death. Surah 29:51 actually sounds the death knell for any Muslim who claims that Muhammad performed miracles. The Qur’an was presented to Muhammad as his only miracle. He claimed unambiguously that this one miracle was sufficient to prove his prophethood. If Muhammad really needed miracles in addition to the Qur’an to prove his prophethood, then this falsifies Allah’s statement regarding the sufficiency of the Qur’an. In view of this fact, is it not really ironical that each time Muslims attribute miracles to Muhammad, they are only proving Allah, Muhammad and the Qur’an wrong? And to this we can add, also the implication that Allah lied in the Qur’an?
Surah 13:43: “They who disbelieve say: Thou art no messenger of Allah. Say: Allah, and whosoever hath knowledge of the Scripture, is sufficient witness between me and you.” (Pickthall)
(Muhammad), the unbelievers say, “You are not a Messenger.” Say, “God and those who have the knowledge of the Book are sufficient witness (to my prophethood).” (Sarwar)
Notice that miracles are not mentioned as one of the witnesses to validate Muhammad’s prophethood. If Muhammad did perform miracles as Muslims claim today, then the Qur’an is in error since it denies the performance of any miracle by him. On the other hand if Muhammad did not perform miracles as testified by the Qur’an, how can Muslims be sure that he was sent by God?
In contrast to Muhammad, notice how the Qur’an testifies that Jesus’ prophethood was authenticated by the miraculous works that he performed with the divine backing of God. The Qur’an records Jesus as saying:
Surah 3:49: “I heal the blind and the leprous, and bring the dead to life with Allah’s permission and I inform you of what you should eat and what you should store in your houses; most surely there is a sign in this for you, if you are believers.” (Shakir)
But why was Jesus given this divine power to perform miracles? The Qur’an itself answers this at the beginning of the above Qur’anic verse. It quotes Jesus as saying:
Surah 3:49: “I have brought you signs of my appointment from your Lord.” (Farook Malik)
This means that according to the Qur’an, Jesus came with credentials that he was sent by God. Muhammad had none.
Max Shimba Ministries