Land of Israel and Jewish heritage – 19

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Land of Israel and Jewish heritage

A series from the book written by Naveed Anjum

Leaving Isaac in Canaan and Ishmael in Makkah

Islamic traditions agree that Abraham took Hagar and Ishmael to Makkah while leaving Isaac and Sarah in Canaan. This is in spite of the contradicting Biblical accounts that neither mention Hagar and Ishmael going to Makkah nor Abraham accompanying them. However, we must follow the Islamic course so that we may follow its presented information and reasoning. Remember, Muslims are allowed to deny Biblical accounts when they conflict with the Qur’an. Therefore, we must use Islamic resources to determine the Muslim perspective of God’s decision regarding Isaac and Ishmael and their descendants.

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We have shown that Isaac was the blessed son, and that Almighty God chose to establish Isaac and his descendants in the blessed land of Canaan, which He had beforehand blessed for the children of Isaac. Nevertheless, God also blessed Makkah for the sacred House of Ishmael and his descendants. We see that it was God’s plan to make Canaan the holy land for the Jewish people and Saudi Arabia the holy land for Muslim peoples. We will ignore that the Bible says it was Paran and not Makkah. Regardless whether it was Paran or Makkah, the fact is that God’s plan was to get Ishmael and his descendants out of Canaan to establish it only for the Israelis. Ibn Abbas, an Islamic narrator of traditions, states:

Ishmael’s birth to Hagar caused strife between her and Sarah, who was still barren. Abraham brought Hagar and their son to a land called Paran or (Faran in Arabic) which is the land surrounding Mecca, where the angel Gabriel showed him the Ka’aba. The objective of this journey was to ‘resettle’ rather than ‘expel’ Hagar.

(To be continued…)

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