The Quran is a sacred text for Muslims who believe it is  Allah’s word. Many of Quran’s stories and teachings are similar to the Bible, indicating that the Quran itself conforms to the fundamental tenets of Christianity and even Judaism. 

In Sura 2:75, the Quran calls the Bible the “kalam Allah,” which means “the Word of God.” The Quran also refers the Bible as the “kitab Allah” (the Book of God) in Sura 2:101; 3:23; 5:44; 28:49. Furthermore, in Sura 3:184, the Qur’an describes the Bible as an “enlightening book.” 

These ayahs clearly state that the Quran does not view the Bible as an unreliable or invalid source of religious knowledge. Instead, they believe that the Bible contains truths that God Himself has revealed.

However, there are some instances in which the Quran opposed the Bible. For example, while both texts teach that Jesus was a prophet, the Quran does not believe that He was the son of God. The Quran also teaches that there is only one god, while the Bible teaches that there are three persons in one Godhead. But despite these differences, Muslims and Christians still pay respect to one another and nourish their faith even more religiously. 

Does the Quran affirm or reject the Bible?

The Quran frequently references the Jewish and Christian’s holy books, addressing them as “People of the Book.” This means that Islam acknowledges the validity of other Scriptures, saying, “Do not argue with the People of the Book unless gracefully, except with those of them who act wrongfully. And say, “We believe in what has been revealed to us and what was revealed to you. Our God and your God is only One. And to Him we fully submit.” (29:46 AYA).

 The Quran even says that Allah Himself speaks about the Tawrat, the Arabic word for the Torah or Old Testament in the Bible; Zaburfor Psalms; and Injil for Gospel or New Testament. As a result, it came to no surprise that Quran believes in the teachings of Jesus Christ because it says that Jesus was a prophet sent by their Almighty, Allah.

However, the Quran, on the other hand, acknowledges that this holy book is Allah’s final and the most complete revelation. As such, it contains guidance for the entire humanity, superseding all other revelations such as in the Bible.  Aside from that, the Quran teaches its followers that the Bible has been corrupted over time. As a result, Muslims do not consider the Bible to be an authoritative source of religious teachings. 

Why Do Muslims Believe That the Bible Was Corrupted?

Muslims believe that the Bible was not written down in a single volume, and that there was a much longer period during which the text could have been altered or corrupted. They also think that some parts in the Bible omit the entire verses which are essential to their beliefs about God and salvation. At some point, they also regard that the Bible has been tampered due to the false interpretation and translation of the manuscripts taken by its authors.

Here are the Quranic passages justifying the Islamic view that the Bible has been corrupted:

  • “And there is indeed a group among them who twist their tongues with the book, that you may suppose it to be from the book. But it is not from the book. And they say, “It is from God,” though it is not from God. And they knowingly speak a lie against God.” (Sura 3:78).
  • “Among those who are Jews are those who distort the meaning of the word, and say, “We hear and disobey,” and “Hear, as one who hears not!” and “Attend to us!” twisting their tongues and disparaging religion. And had they said, “We hear and obey” and “Listen” and “Regard us,” it would have been better for them and more proper. But God cursed them for their disbelief, so they believe not, save a few.” (Sura 4:46).
  • “Then for breaking their covenant, we cursed them and hardened their hearts. They distort the meaning of the word, and have forgotten part of that whereof they were reminded…” (Quran 5:13-15).
  • “So woe unto those who write the book with their hands, then say, “This is from God,” that they may sell it for a paltry price. So woe unto them for what their hands have written and woe unto them for what they earn.” (Sura 2:79:).
  • “O community of Muslims, how is it that you seek wisdom from the people of the book? Your book, brought down upon his prophet…is the latest report about God. You read a book that has not been distorted, but the people of the book, as God related to you, exchanged that which God wrote, changing the book with their hands (Sahih Muslim).” (Muslim Hadith).

What Does the Quran Say About God’s Mission for the People of the Book?

The Quran speaks highly of Christians and Jews as the custodians of scripture. In fact, God Himself entrusted them with the responsibility of making His word known to all humankind. Sadly, not all Christians and Jews have lived up to this calling. Some have been unfaithful to their trust, hiding the truth of God instead of sharing it. However, the Qur’an clarifies that there are still many who have been faithful custodians, sharing the Holy Gospel of God throughout the world.  Nonetheless, the Quran teaches that unfaithful people or those who have not lived up to God’s calling are described as follows:

1.  Concealing the Scipture’s truth

“Who is more unjust than those who conceal the testimony they have from Allah?” (2:140 AYA)

The Quran condemns people, regardless of religion, who would rather hide the Scripture’s truth instead of sharing it. It emphasizes the importance of spreading God or Allah’s Words around the world to bring justice and peace among nations.. 

2. Becoming false teachers and forgetting what was taught from the Scripture.

Muslims acknowledge false teachers or prophets from various Christian sects and other religions as those who claim to receive a message from God and preach it to people in the form of treachery. Their teachings are the opposite of God’s and thus opposed with what the Quran says. Here’s their references:

  • “There is among them a section who distort the Book with their tongues: (As they read) you would think it is a part of the Book, but it is no part of the Book; and they say, “That is from Allah,” but it is not from Allah.” (3:78 AYA)
  • “They change words from their context and forget a part of that whereof they were admonished.” (5:13 MP/14 AYA)

 These Ayahs tell us that we should be careful of the false teachers that may tamper our beliefs. We can do so by also learning about other religions to better understand how to refute false claims  against what the Heavenly Father truly teaches His people. 

3. Seeking to gain profit through the Scriptures.

“And remember, Allah took a Covenant from the People of the Book, to make it known and clear to mankind, and not to hide it; but they threw it away behind their backs, and purchased with it some miserable gain! And vile was the bargain they made!” (3:187 AYA)

Sadly, there are people who use the Bible as a means to make money. They don’t share it because they want people to come to know God, but because they think they can make a quick buck off of it. This is an incredibly selfish thing to do, and it’s something that the Quran is very clear about:  never preach for the sake of personal gain; it’s a form of bribery that rewards a painful retribution.

4. Jews who believed false scriptures and became transgressors.

In Surah Al-Baqarah, Allah says that Jews changed the Word of God from what was given to them, and followed the devils instead of Solomon. The Quaran even compared Jews to sorcerers, as they were also responsible for causing division between man and wife and harming people through their magic. Consequently, the Quran is very critical of Jews who believed in false scriptures and became transgressors.It says:

  • “But the transgressors changed the word from that which had been given them.” (2:59 AYA)
  • “Among them are unlettered folk who know the Scripture not except from hearsay. They but guess. Therefore woe be unto them who write the Scripture with their hands and then say, “This is from Allah,” that they may purchase a small gain therewith.” (2:78-79 MP)
  • “…a party of those who have received the Scripture fling the Scripture of Allah behind their backs as if they knew not. And follow that which the devils falsely related against the kingdom of Solomon. Solomon disbelieved not; but the devils disbelieved, teaching mankind magic and that which was revealed to the two angels in Babylon, Harut and Marut. …And from these two (angles) people learn that by which they cause division between man and wife; but they injure none thereby save by Allah’s leave. And they learn that which harmeth them and profiteth them not. And surely they do know that he who trafficketh therein will have no (happy) portion in the Hereafter; and surely evil is the price for which they sell their souls, if they but knew.” (Quran, Al-Baqarah, 102-103)

 What Does the Quran Say About Faithful Jews?

Despite the harsh truth that unfaithful people have corrupted the Bible over the centuries, many remain faithful to its original message. In this instance, the Quran has a great respect for these people, and affirms much of the Bible’s teachings.  Here are a few things that the Quran says about faithful Jews:

  • “Not all of them are alike: Of the People of the Book are a portion that stand (for the right); they rehearse the Signs of Allah all night long, and they prostrate themselves in adoration. They believe in Allah and the Last Day; they enjoin what is right, and forbid what is wrong; and they hasten (in emulation) in (all) good works: They are in the ranks of the righteous. Of the good that they do, nothing will be rejected of them; for Allah knoweth well those that do right.” (3:113-115 AYA)
  • “Nearest among them in love to the Believers wilt thou find those who say, “We are Christians”: Because amongst these are men devoted to learning and men who have renounced the world, and they are not arrogant.” (5:85 AYA/82 MP)

How Does the Quran View the Christian and Jewish Scripture?

Although there are differences in biblical views among the Quran, Bible, and Tanakh (Jewish’s Scripture), the Quran affirms the veracity of some of their teachings. For instance, the Quran tells us that the Almighty Father created the universe and everything in it. It also says that Allah sent prophets, including Abraham, Moses, and Jesus to teach people about Him and His will for their lives. Even more, the Quran speaks highly of Jesus and affirms that He was a great prophet who did miracles by the will of God.

Here are some of the Quranic views on the Christian and Jewish Scriptures:

1. The Quran clearly states that all Scripture must be given the same respect.

  • “O ye who believe! Believe in Allah and His Apostle, and the scripture which He hath sent to His Apostle and the scripture which He sent to those before (him). Any who denieth Allah, His Angels, His Books, His Apostles, and the Day of Judgement, hath gone far, far astray.” (4:136 AYA)
  • “We believe in Allah, and in what has been revealed to us and what was revealed to Abraham, Ismail, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and in (the Books) given to Moses, Jesus, and the Prophets, from their Lord: We make no distinction between one and another among them.” (3:84 AYA)

These verses make it abundantly clear that all scripture is to be respected and given equal importance. This is because they are all seen as divinely inspired by Allah. Therefore, it’s essential to read the Quran and study the Bible and Torah to gain a well-rounded understanding of God’s will.

2.  The Jews and Christians were given the same Scripture: the Torah

  • “Those who follow the Messenger (Mohammed), the Prophet who can neither read nor write, whom they will find described in the Torah and the Gospel (which are) with them.” (7:157 MP)
  • “And when there cometh unto them (Jews) a Scripture (the Qur’an) from Allah, confirming that in their possession.” (2:89 MP)

Therefore, the Qur’an is not talking about scripture that Jews and Christians used to have in the past but are now missing. Instead, it refers to the Torah given to Moses, and the Gospel was given to Jesus—scripture that was with them (Christians and Jews) and still in their possession during Muhammad’s lifetime.**

3. The Qur’an teaches that it builds upon the messages of earlier scripture.

“This Koran is not such as can be produced by other than Allah; on the contrary it is a confirmation of (revelations) that went before it, and a fuller explanation of the Book.” (10:37 AYA/38 MP)

As a result, the Qur’an views itself as the protector of all Scripture’s message: “To thee We sent the scripture in truth, confirming the scripture that came before it, and guarding it in safety.” (5:48 MP/51 AYA) Because of this, the Qur’an cautions against those who would “corrupt” Scripture: “Woe to those that deal in fraud, Those who, when they have to receive by measure from men, exact full measure, But when they have to give by measure or weight to men, give less than due.” (Surat 83)

4. The Quran often invalidates the Christian and Jewish Scripture     

While we might interpret these Ayahs as disregarding the Jewish or Christian scriptures, the intention is to only clarify or improve upon what was already there.

“Say: “O People of the Scripture! You have nothing to stand on unless you observe the Torah and the Gospel and what has now been revealed to you from your Lord.” (Quran: Al-‘Ma’idah, verse: 68)

And We sent, following in their footsteps, Jesus, the son of Mary, confirming that which came before him in the Torah; and We gave him the Gospel, in which was guidance and light and confirming that which preceded it of the Torah as guidance and instruction for the righteous.” (Quran: Al-‘Ma’idah, verse: 46)

5. The Jews once asked Muhammad to help them make a decision, and Muhammad replied with:

“How come they (come) unto thee (Muhammad) for judgment when they have the Torah, wherein Allah hath delivered judgment (for them)? … Lo! We did reveal the Torah, wherein is guidance and a light … And We caused Jesus, son of Mary, to follow in their footsteps, confirming that which was (revealed) before him in the Torah, and We bestowed on him the Gospel wherein is guidance and a light, confirming that which was (revealed) before it in the Torah – a guidance and an admonition unto those who ward off (evil). Let the People of the Gospel judge by that which Allah hath revealed therein. Whoso judgeth not by that which Allah hath revealed: such are evil-livers.

And unto thee (Muslims) have We revealed the Scripture (the Qur’an) with the truth, confirming whatever Scripture was before it, and a watcher over it. So judge between them by that which Allah hath revealed, and follow not their desires away from the truth which hath come unto thee. For each We have appointed a divine law and a traced-out way. Had Allah willed He could have made you one community. But that He may try you by that which He hath given you (He hath made you as ye are). So vie one with another in good works. Unto Allah ye will all return, and He will then inform you of that wherein ye differ.” (5:43-48, MP)

The most important sentence is: “For each, we have designated a divine law and a well-defined pathway.” This implies that all religious denominations have each been given a sacred text to use as a basis. Therefore, we are all responsible for making our own judgments based on what has been shown to us. Although it’s okay to ask for help from others, in the end, it is our responsibility to discern the truth.

Muslims are not to judge people of other religions by their standards but by what has been given to them. This means that while Islam teaches certain things about the Bible, it is ultimately up to Christians and Jews to interpret their own scriptures. This is in keeping with the Islamic principle of respect for other religions.

It should be noted that while the Quran does contain some criticism of the Bible, it also speaks highly of many Biblical figures and events. This is because the Quran affirms that the Bible is a holy book that contains truth. However, the Bible has been corrupted over time and is no longer entirely accurate. Therefore, Muslims believe the Quran was sent down as a corrective measure. In other words, the Quran is not meant to replace the Bible, but to supplement it.

The Quran also does not tolerate people who ignore the truth that is found in both the Quran and the Bible. Those who do so are considered “evil-livers.” This is because they are not living according to the standards set by God. Instead, they are following their desires, which leads them astray from the truth.

Understanding the Jewish and Christian Scriptures

Jews and Christians shared the same holy book: the Bible. It’s just that it varies in name. In Judaism, it is called the Tanakh or Hebrew Bible, while in Christianity, it’s the Old Testament. 

The Tanakh consists of the Torah, the Prophets, and the Writings, which are the scriptures of the Jewish Prophets before Jesus. Christians have always honored and read these Scriptures as the first section of the Christian Bible.

The New Testament is the second section of the Bible and consists of the Gospels, Acts, Letters, and Revelation. Christians accept the New Testament as Scripture because it contains Jesus’ teachings about God’s love and salvation.

While Jews and Christians may not agree on everything in the Bible, they both revere it as a sacred text that contains wisdom for living a good life.  And despite the differences in their interpretations of the Bible, Jews and Christians have always found common ground in their shared belief in one God who created the world and loves the entire humanity.

Should Muslims Read the Bible?

Muslims believe that the Quran is the final revelation of God and that it supersedes all previous revelations, including the Bible. However, this does not mean that Muslims deny the validity of the Bible. In fact, the Quran itself affirms 

So, this means the Quran does not discourage the Bible’s study. In fact, it has numerous positive references to the Bible and the need for Muslims to read it:

  • “Lo! We did reveal the Torah (Old Testament), wherein is guidance and a light.” (Sura 5:44).
  • “And We caused Jesus, son of Mary, to follow in their footsteps, confirming that which was (revealed) before him in the Torah, and We bestowed on him the Gospel wherein is guidance and a light, confirming that which was (revealed) before it in the Torah – a guidance and an admonition unto those who ward off (evil).” (Sura 5:46).
  • “It is He Who sent down to thee (step by step), in truth, the Book, confirming what went before it; and He sent down the Law (of Moses) and the Gospel (of Jesus) before this, as a guide to mankind, and He sent down the criterion (of judgment between right and wrong).” (Sura 3:3).
  • “And be not thou of those who deny the revelations of Allah, for then wert thou of the losers.” (Sura 10:95).

Overall, the Quran’s teachings show a great deal of support for the importance of the Bible. Muslims were able to learn from the Bible and gain additional guidance from it in finding the good value of life.

Bottom Line

The Quran has a great respect for the Bible and its prophets. It affirms that the Bible is from Allah and that it has been sent to guide humanity. The Quran even urges Muslims to read the Bible so that they can gain a better understanding of their faith. However, the Quran also  says that the Bible has been tampered with and that not all of its content is accurate. For this reason, it stands on the premise that the Quran’s teachings would help to supplement or complete the gap in the Bible. 


Sarah Goodwin

A passionate Christian and Bible enthusiast, I find joy in delving deep into Scripture and sharing its timeless wisdom with my readers. Through words, I aspire to illuminate the profound lessons the Bible offers, hoping to inspire faith and purpose in every heart. Join me on a journey of biblical exploration and spiritual growth.Enter your text here...

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