In the Name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

Is it obey God and the messenger or obey God and Muhammad?

God Almighty , the author of the Quran, has told us that every thing in this universe is under His control. The Quran, being God's final message to the world has to be under His complete control.

Its Suras, verses, words, letters, numbers, the order of revelation, the order of writing of the Quran, the unique spelling of some words, the choice of verbs, adjectives, adverbs, nouns, the beginning and end of any specific verse or sura, the length of the individual verses and suras, their naming, the names of people mentioned in the Quran, e.g. Mary, Muhammed, Noah...etc. Everything that has to do with the Quran is deliberately done by God Almighty.

The student of the Quran will always learn as permitted by the Most Gracious, as only He is the Teacher of the Quran, See 55:1-2.

Obey God and Obey Muhammed.

Any student of the Quran will object right away to this expression that he/she never heard before. We always hear, "Obey God and obey the messenger..." but never "Obey God and Obey Muhammed ." What is the difference , if any.?

Let us find out first if God mentioned Muhammed by name in the Quran. We know, He did, actually four times. In 3:144, 33:40, 47:2 and 48:29. How many times did God tell us to "Obey the messenger" ? There are more than 25 times in the Quran, where God ordered us to obey the messenger. Not a single time did God say "Obey Muhammed"

Is this a co-incidnce or a deliberate order?

Only true believers know that everything in God's world is deliberate, nothing is a co-incidence.

Let us find out what God is teaching us about Muhammed.

[18:110] Say, (O Muhammed) "I am no more than a human being like you....

God Almighty knowing that the Prophet Muhammed is a human being like us, will live his life and run his business like any human being would. He would make mistakes, get angry, have fears, ...etc. Muhammed the human being was the messenger only because of the message given to him, the QURAN.

Muhammed without the Quran is just another human being like us. God wants it to be very clear to obey the person that has the message, the Quran, for what he has not for who he is.

Obey the messenger is conditional on having the message, the Quran. Obey the messenger because of the message he has, the QURAN. Obey the messenger means to follow his message that is given to him, the QURAN.

Muhammed without the message is just a regular human being, he frowned and turned away when the blind poor man came to him, (See 80:1-11), he feared the people when he was supposed to fear only God, (See 33:37), and he prohibited what he should not prohibit, (See 66:1)

That is why there has never been a single order in the Quran from God,the Most Cognizant to "Obey Muhammed." If we were to obey Muhammed the human being,(not the messenger), we were to frown at the poor, fear the people instead of God and prohibit what God did not. We are required to obey the messenger, because it is the message (QURAN) that made the obedience a requirement, not the person, Muhammed, that made it a requirement.

Those who know Arabic well know that the word (Rasool) in Arabic means both the messenger and the message. So, when God says , obey the (Rasool) , He means both the messenger and the message (QURAN). Both are inseparable. When the messenger, the human being is dead, the true messenger among us becomes the message itself, in this case, the QURAN. God Almighty has called the Quran (Rasool) on many occasions, e.g., 5:15, 11:1-3, 14:1, 27:2, 32:3, 34:6, 42:52, & 65:11.

One great example of the distinction between obeying the messenger (For what he has) (the Quran) and obeying the human being, is what God told Muhammed's wives; in Sura 33,

[33:30-31] O wives of the prophet, if any of you commits gross sin, the retribution will be doubled for her. This is easy for God to do. Any one of you who obeys GOD and His MESSENGER, and leads a righteous life, we will grant her double the recompense, and we have prepared for her a generous provision.

Notice the order here for the prophet's wives to obey the Messenger, not their husband or Muhammed. If God would have said to them to obey their husband, the unconditional obedience of the wife to her husband would have been decreed.

If God would have said, obey Muhammed, it would have made the unconditional obedience of Muhammed a decree. God wants them and wants us to obey the messenger (for the message he has, the QURAN).

Muhammed the human being was given the great honor of being chosen the final prophet of God to deliver the final message, the QURAN, and was described as "blessed with a great moral character" in 68:4.

We, however have to remember not to make any distinction between him and the rest of God's messengers, See 2:285. We are to make the distinction between obeying him by following his message and obeying him by following allegation of what he did as a human being in his own personal life.

YES, we should obey the messenger. Those who accept the Quran accept the order from God to "obey the messenger" by following his message, the Quran ALONE. When the prophet Muhammed died, he left for us ONLY one book, the Quran.

When God told Muhammed in the Quran, "Today I completed your religion for you", Muhammed had only one book at that time, the Quran. Muhammed gave us one kind of Islam, that we can find in the book of God, the Quran. He did not leave for us the other sects of Sunni, Shiite, Ahmaddya, Ismailis…etc. These sects were created when the Muslims looked for the books of hadiths and sunna to supplement the book of God. In doing so, they willingly or unwillingly declared that they do not trust God in His own book. The book that God described as complete, perfect, fully detailed and having details of everything. See 12:111. By doing so, all these sects left God’s kingdom and joinedthe same groups who previously corrupted the other religions of God, Judaism and Christianity.

It is very interesting to know that God gave us this prophecy in the Quran and told us the messe nger will complain to Him on the Last Day that: "My people have deserted this Quran", 25:30.

[12:111] In their history, there is a lesson for those who possess intelligence. This is not fabricated Hadith; this (Quran) confirms all previous scriptures, provides the details of everything, and is a beacon and mercy for those who believe.