Friday August 25, 2017 

Faith

The 99 Beautiful Names for God

Islam refers to God in writings and many ways

By Myrtle Macdonald, M. Sc., Author, Chilliwack

 

radition says that memorizing the 99 most beautiful names of Allah almost assures a person of Paradise:

 

ADVANCE \d4"Abu Huraira reported that Allah's Messenger said: 'There are ninety-nine names of Allah; he who commits them to memory will get into Paradise. Truly, Allah is Odd (he is One) and He loves odd numbers."

I welcome responses with questions and discussion.

The Essential Teachings of Islam, Arrow Books, 1990, p. 9. See also Sahih Bukhari 3.894)

However, the Qur'an knows actually many more than 99 names or titles for God. This is evidenced in the following excerpt of a book review by Dr. Christine Schirrmacher of a German work by the author Djafari:

Hamid Molla Djafari. Gott hat die schönsten Namen ... Islamische Gottesnamen, ihre Bedeutung, Verwendung und Probleme ihrer Übersetzung [God has the most beautiful names. God's names in Islam, their meaning, use, and problems with their translation]. Peter Lang: Frankfurt 2001, 357 pages

In the Koran we read: "The most beautiful names belong to Allah. So call on him by them" (surah 7:180). "The most beautiful names" are understood by Muslim theologians as names and attributes of God which are used during prayer, Sufi-meditation or while saying the rosary.

God's names are important as God has not revealed himself in Islam, as Muslim theologians hold, but has only sent down his Holy Book, the Koran. In the Koran, we read about his attributes and how he dealt with mankind in history. 

In folk Islam, people believe that God has 99 names, whereas the 100th name is hidden to the believer. In the Koran, we find more than 99 names; therefore, Muslim theologians have composed long lists of God's attributes differing from each other. For this reason, Molla-Djafari can give a list of about 200 names. He analyses them linguistically, describes when they are used and interprets their meanings in order to correct former "wrong" translations, as he emphasizes.

By and then, Molla-Djafari leaves his scientific approach aside ... Nevertheless, the book is worth reading as it lists the "most beautiful names of God" like the "Merciful", the "Gracious", the "Forgiver", the "Pardoner" beside names for Allah like "the Humiliator", "the Tormentor", "the Torturer", and "the best of Planners and Plotters" (ChSch). (Source: Islam und Christlicher Glaube (1/2002), Institut für Islamfragen)

The are several, somewhat different lists of "Ninety-Nine Names" circulating.

The 99 Muslim names for Allah (God). They consist of Al plus a descriptive word. Many are beautiful, but several very important Christian names for God are not included in their 99. See some examples as follows:

- Emmanuel (God with us): This refers to the incarnation of God in human form.

- Agape (Altruistic love): By the way, Greek Socrates wrote a book on love, identifying five different kinds, but leaving out agape (undeserved love). We can’t earn God’s love.

- God who Forgives Enemies: There are three names that say Allah is forgiving, but the forgiving of enemies is not mentioned..

- Shepherd: Jesus was a model shepherd, tending us like sheep. He hunts for lost sheep (with 99 safe and one hunted for - a parable Jesus told).

- Lamb: He died as a lamb sin offering, putting an end to thousands of years of animal sin offerings. Sheep are silent animals, even when being sheared. Jesus was silent when interrogated and tortured. Muslims still have Eid, a festival when they sacrifice a sheep or lamb for their sins.

- Gate and Door: Entrance of the sheep fold. Robbers climbing over the fence were like some politicians, lawyers and corporation CEOs today.

- Water of Life: He satisfies spiritual thirst. He sends dew and rain for our crops.

- Bread of Life: Muslims say that God is provider of bread. in the Lord’s supper (Eucharist) bread symbolizes His body broken for us, remembering that He is our food. He nurtures us.

- God the Father: Muslims are monotheists who get angry about our trinity (three in one God). They believe in Jesus as a prophet but not divine. I have a book written by a Muslim woman who became a Christian. It is titled: “I Dared to Call Him Father”. She was much persecuted for that.

- God the Son: We believe that God came to us as a baby and grew up learning the Old Testament thoroughly (from parents and local synagogue), becoming a carpenter and a student of nature (composing the parables). He was tempted in all ways but without sin. Both Muslims and Christians believe that God is sinless.

- God the Spirit: Resurrected Lord, after rising from the dead, he was God the Holy Spirit. He appeared to the disciples although doors were closed. He ascended and can be anywhere, available to anyone at any time.

- Prince of Peace: There are still many people tortured, expelled and killed due to conversion. Freedom of religion is not allowed by Muslims. They govern by Theocracy, not by Democracy. Many churches are destroyed. Some Muslim doctors, such as some in Nigeria, will not treat a child unless the Christian father becomes a Muslim. These persecutions happen in many countries, even in some where Islam is a not the majority religion.

There are many Muslim sects based on differing geography and lineage of Caliphs and Imam rulers. The major groups are Sunni and Shia (Shiite). Now also there are militaristic groups that infiltrate the youth with ideas of violent jihad (holy war). They are war lords rather than devout worshippers of Allah.

When we read scripture the Holy Spirit highlights phrases and sentences that we have not noticed before. Thus He speaks to our current needs in a timely way. He also brings words from the Bible into our thinking at any time. If we use a concordance we can find the verse. Then to understand the context, we can read the whole paragraph or chapter and also look up cross references that are in the margin.

When we read scripture God highlights phrases and sentences that we have not noticed before. Thus He speaks to our current needs in a timely way. He also brings words from the Bible into our thinking at any time. If we use a concordance we can find the verse. Then to understand the context, we can read the whole paragraph or chapter and also look up cross references that are in the margin.


Some important Judeo-Christian names for God are as follows:

- Emmanuel (God with us): This refers to the incarnation of God in human form.

- Agape (Altruistic love): By the way, Greek Plato/Socrates wrote a book on love, identifying five different loves, but leaving out agape (undeserved love). We can’t earn God’s love.

- God who Forgives Enemies: There are three names that say Allah is forgiving, but the forgiving of enemies is not mentioned..

- Shepherd: Jesus was the model shepherd, tending us like sheep. He hunts for lost sheep (with 99 safe and one hunted - a parable Jesus told).

- Lamb: He died as a lamb sin offering, putting an end to thousands of years of animal sin offerings. Sheep are silent animals, even when being sheared. Jesus was silent when interrogated and tortured. Muslims still have Eid, a festival when they sacrifice a sheep or lamb for their sins.

- Gate and Door: Entrance of the sheep fold. Robbers climbing over the fence were like some politicians, lawyers and corporation CEOs today.

- Water of Life: He satisfies spiritual thirst and He sends dew and rain for our crops.

- Bread of Life: Muslims say that God is provider of bread. in the Lord’s supper (Eucharist) bread symbolizes His body broken for us, remembering that He is our food. He nurtures us.

- God the Father: Muslims are monotheists who get angry about our trinity (three in one God). They believe in Jesus as a prophet but not divine. I have a book written by a Muslim woman who became a Christian. It is titled: “I Dared to Call Him Father”. She was much persecuted for that.

- God the Son: We believe that God came to us as a baby and grew up learning the Old Testament thoroughly (from parents and local synagogue), becoming a carpenter and a student of nature (composing the parables). He was tempted in all ways but without sin. Both Muslims and Christians believe that God is sinless.

- God the Spirit: Resurrected Lord, after rising from the dead, he was God the Holy Spirit. He appeared to the disciples although doors were closed. He ascended and can be anywhere, available to anyone at any time.

- Prince of Peace: There are still many people tortured, expelled and killed due to conversion. Freedom of religion is not allowed by Muslims. They govern by Theocracy, not by Democracy. Many churches are destroyed. Some Muslim doctors, such as some in Nigeria, will not treat a child unless the Christian father becomes a Muslim. These persecutions happen in many countries, even in some where Islam is a not the majority religion.

There are many Muslim sects based on differing geography and lineage of Caliphs and Imam rulers. The major groups are Sunni and Shia (Shiite). Now also there are militaristic groups that infiltrate the youth with ideas of violent jihad (holy war). They are war lords rather than devout worshippers of Allah.

When we read scripture God highlights phrases and sentences that we have not noticed before. Thus He speaks to our current needs in a timely way. He also brings words from the Bible into our thinking at any time. If we use a concordance we can find the verse. Then to understand the context, we can read the whole paragraph or chapter and also look up cross references that are in the margin.

Some important Judeo-Christian names for God are as follows:

- Emmanuel (God with us): This refers to the incarnation of God in human form.

- Agape (Altruistic love): By the way, Greek Plato/Socrates wrote a book on love, identifying five different loves, but leaving out agape (undeserved love). We can’t earn God’s love.

- God who Forgives Enemies: There are three names that say Allah is forgiving, but the forgiving of enemies is not mentioned..

- Shepherd: Jesus was the model shepherd, tending us like sheep. He hunts for lost sheep (with 99 safe and one hunted - a parable Jesus told).

- Lamb: He died as a lamb sin offering, putting an end to thousands of years of animal sin offerings. Sheep are silent animals, even when being sheared. Jesus was silent when interrogated and tortured. Muslims still have Eid, a festival when they sacrifice a sheep or lamb for their sins.

- Gate and Door: Entrance of the sheep fold. Robbers climbing over the fence were like some politicians, lawyers and corporation CEOs today.

- Water of Life: He satisfies spiritual thirst and He sends dew and rain for our crops.

- Bread of Life: Muslims say that God is provider of bread. in the Lord’s supper (Eucharist) bread symbolizes His body broken for us, remembering that He is our food. He nurtures us.

- God the Father: Muslims are monotheists who get angry about our trinity (three in one God). They believe in Jesus as a prophet but not divine. I have a book written by a Muslim woman who became a Christian. It is titled: “I Dared to Call Him Father”. She was much persecuted for that.

- God the Son: We believe that God came to us as a baby and grew up learning the Old Testament thoroughly (from parents and local synagogue), becoming a carpenter and a student of nature (composing the parables). He was tempted in all ways but without sin. Both Muslims and Christians believe that God is sinless.

- God the Spirit: Resurrected Lord, after rising from the dead, he was God the Holy Spirit. He appeared to the disciples although doors were closed. He ascended and can be anywhere, available to anyone at any time.

- Prince of Peace: There are still many people tortured, expelled and killed due to conversion. Freedom of religion is not allowed by Muslims. They govern by Theocracy, not by Democracy. Many churches are destroyed. Some Muslim doctors, such as some in Nigeria, will not treat a child unless the Christian father becomes a Muslim. These persecutions happen in many countries, even in some where Islam is a not the majority religion.



When we read scripture the Holy Spirit highlights phrases and sentences that we have not noticed before. Thus He speaks to our current needs in a timely way. He also brings words from the Bible into our thinking at any time. If we use a concordance we can find the verse. Then to understand the context, we can read the whole paragraph or chapter and also look up cross references that are in the margin.

Tradition says: 'There are ninety-nine names of Allah and he who commits them to memory will get into Paradise. Truly, Allah is odd (he is One) and He loves odd numbers."

There are many Muslim sects based on differing geography and lineage of Caliphs and Imam rulers. The major groups are Sunni and Shia (Shiite). Now also there are militaristic groups that infiltrate the youth with ideas of violent jihad (holy war). They are war lords rather than devout worshippers of Allah.

In folk Islam the 100th name is hidden.

There are several, somewhat different long lists of names circulating.

Muslim names for Allah consist of “al” plus a descriptive word. In Hebrew the names for God begin with “el”. They are beautiful, but several important Christian names for God are not included in the 99.

One common listing is given by Brown and Palmer as follows:

1. Allah

2. The Compassionate (al-Rahman)

3. The Merciful (al-Rahim)

4. The King/Sovereign (al-Malik)

5. The Holy (al-Quddus)

6. The Source of Peace (al-Salam)

7. The Giver of Faith (al-Mu'min)

8. The Overall Protector (al-Muhaimin)

9. The Strong (al-`Aziz)

10. The Almighty (al-Jabbar)

11. The Majestic (al-Mutakabbir)

12. The Creator (al-Khaliq)

13. The Maker (al-Bari')

14. The Fashioner (al-Musawwir)

15. The Great Forgiver (al-Ghaffar)

16. The Dominant (al-Qahhar)

17. The Bestower (al-Wahhab)18. The Provider (al-Razzaq)

19. The Opener, The Reliever (al-Fattah)

20. The All-Knowing (al-`Alim)

21. The Restrainer, The Withholder (al-Qabid)

22. The Extender (al-Basit)

23. The Humbler (al-Khafid)

24. The Exalter (al-Rafi`)

25. The Empowerer (al-Mu`izz)

26. The Humiliator (al-Mudhill)

27. The All-Hearing, The Hearer (al-Sami`)

28. The All-Seeing (al-Basir)

29. The Judge (al-Hakam)

30. The Just (al-`Adl)

31. The Kindly One (al-Latif)

32. The Gracious, The Aware (al-Khabir)

33. The Clement, The Forbearing (al-Halim)

34. The Mighty (al-`Azim)

35. The Forgiving (al-Ghafur)

36. The Grateful, The Appreciative (al-Shakur)

37. The High, The Sublime (al-`Aliyy)

38. The Great (al-Kabir)

39. The Preserver (al-Hafiz)

40. The Protector, Guardian, Feeder, Sustainer (al-Muqit)

41. The Reckoner (al-Hasib)

42. The Sublime One (al-Jali)

43. The Bountiful, The Gracious (al-Karim)

44. The Watcher, The Watchful (al-Raqib)

45. The Responsive, The Hearkener (al-Mujib)

46. The Infinite, The All-Embracing (al-Wasi`)

47. The Wise (al-Hakim al-Mutlaq)

48. The Loving (al-Wadud)

49. The Glorious (al-Majid)

50. The Resurrector (al-Ba`ith)

51. The Witness (al-Shahid)52. The True (al-Haqq)

53. The Advocate (al-Wakil)

54. The Most Strong (al-Qawiyy)

55. The Firm (al-Matin)

56. The Patron (al-Waliyy)

57. The Praiseworthy (al-Hamid)

58. The Numberer (al-Muhsi)

59. The Commencer (al-Mubdi)

60. The Restorer (al-Mu`id)

61. The Giver of Life (al-Muhyi)

62. The One Who Gives Death (al-Mumit)

63. The Living One (al-Hayy)

64. The Self-Subsisting (al-Qayyum)

65. The Perceiver (al-Wajid)

66. The One (al-Wahid)

67. The Independent (al-Samad)

68. The Powerful (al-Qadir)

69. The Dominant (al-Muqtadir)

70. The Giver (al-Muqaddim)

71. The Retarder (al-Mu'akhkhir)

72. The First (al-Awwal)

73. The Last (al-Akhir)

74. The Manifest (al-Zahir)

75. The Hidden (al-Batin)

76. The Governor (al-Wali)

77. The High Exalted (al-Muta`ali)

78. The Righteous (al-Barr)

79. The Relenting (al-Tawwab)

80. The Forgiver (al-`Afuww)

81. The Avenger (al-Muntaquim)

82. The Compassionate (al-Ra'uf)

83. The Ruler of the Kingdom (Malik al-Mulk)

84. The Lord of Majesty and Bounty (Dhu'l-Jalal wa'l-Ikram)

85. The Equitable (al-Muqsit)

86. The Gatherer, The Collector (al-Jami`)

87. The Self-Sufficient (al-Ghani)

88. The Enricher (al-Mughni)

89. The Bestower (al-Mu`ti)

90. The Withholder (al-Mani`)

91. The Propitious (al-Nafi`)

92. The Distresser (al-Darr)

93. The Light (al-Nur)

94. The Guide (al-Hadi)

95. The Eternal (al-Azali)

96. The Everlasting (al-Baqi

97. The Heir (al-Warith)

98. The Guide to the Right Path (al-Rashid)

99. The Patient (al-Sabu)

 


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