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Rebuttal to David Wood: Don't lose your head - Four Reasons for the Early Spread of Islam!


By Umar






The article is located at: http://www..org/Authors/Wood/islam_spread.htm


I will skip the introduction and just go to the main parts of this article.



He Wrote:


Reason One: Muhammad’s Ability to Breed Rage in His Followers

Historically, we know of at least one individual who was so impressed by Islam’s ability to inspire men to kill without question that he concluded that Islam must be true:

The apostle said, "Kill any Jew that falls into your power." Thereupon Muhayyisa bin Mas’ud leapt upon Ibn Sunayna, a Jewish merchant with whom they had social and business relations, and killed him. Huwayyisa was not a Muslim at the time though he was the elder brother. When Muhayyisa killed him Huwayyisa began to beat him, saying, "You enemy of God, did you kill him when much of the fat on your belly comes from his wealth?" Muhayyisa answered, "Had the one who ordered me to kill him ordered me to kill you I would have cut your head off." He said that this was the beginning of Huwayyisa’s acceptance of Islam. The other replied, "By God, if Muhammad had ordered you to kill me would you have killed me?" He said, "Yes, by God, had he ordered me to cut off your head I would have done so." He exclaimed, "By God, a religion which can bring you to this is marvelous!" And he became a Muslim.[2]

In this passage, Muhammad tells his followers to "Kill any Jew that falls into your power." Muhayyisa, acting on Muhammad’s orders, kills a Jewish merchant named Ibn Sunayna. Huwayyisa doesn’t understand how Muhayyisa could turn against a friend of the family so quickly, so Muhayyisa explains it to him. Essentially, Muhayyisa’s justification for the murder is that Muhammad told him to do it, and that, if commanded by Muhammad, he would murder anyone, even his own family. Huwayyisa is much impressed by his brother’s willingness to mindlessly follow the orders of Muhammad, so he converts to Islam, shouting, "By God, a religion which can bring you to this [i.e. a readiness to kill your own family] is marvelous!"

Huwayyisa’s admiration for his brother’s dedication was probably shared by many in the early hours of the Islamic Empire. Young men without direction were suddenly transformed into ardent followers of a new system of belief, and they would do anything for their prophet. "Surely there must be something to this new religion," people would think. Even so, the devotion of believers is not an infallible test for truth. If it were, we would have to conclude that Christianity, Mormonism, Islam, Buddhism, communism, and Nazism are all true, for all of these systems have produced dedicated adherents.



My Response:


In response to the above story cited by Mr. David Wood, we find this:


Despite the fact that this story is mentioned in Sunan Abu Dawood, it is weak and unreliable. Concerning isnad (i.e. chain of reporters), this Hadith was narrated by servant of Zaid Ibn Thabet on authority of daughter of Muhayyisah. Servant of Zaid is Muhammad Ibn Ibi Muhammad and he is unreliable, and daughter of Muhayyisah is unknown. Concerning matn (i.e. text), it says that Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) ordered to kill all Jews which is illogical even if Christian missionaries want to believe it! Because the Jews had a treaty with Muslims and there was no evidence that Muslims indulged in killing any Jew other than this Hadith. Moreover, Ibn Hesham himelf who edited the work of Ibn Ishaq suggests that the incident of Huwayyisah and Muhayyisah occurred during slaughter of Bani-Qurayzah, not after murder of Ka’b(11). Needless to say, there is no such thing as “Kill any Jew that come under your power”.

(11) As-Sirat-un-Nabawiyyah, Volume 3, page 18

(Source: https://www.answering-christianity.com/bassam_zawadi/ibn_sunayna.htm)


If this story is not true, then David Wood's title for the above is wrong, and if his title is wrong, then his conclusion is wrong, and if his conclusion is wrong, then his argument has been refuted.



He Wrote:


Reason Two: Patently False Prophecies

Many people were impressed when Muhammad spoke. He seemed to know everything, and he confidently answered difficult questions that no one else could answer. The problem is that many of his answers later turned out to be completely false. Consider the following answers given by Muhammad:

When Abdullah bin Salama heard of the arrival of the Prophet (the blessing and peace of Allah be upon him) at Madina, he came to him and said: "I am asking you about three things which nobody knows but a prophet: What is the first portent of the Hour? What will be the first meal taken by the people of Paradise? Why does a child resemble its father, and why does it resemble its maternal uncle?" Allah’s Apostle (the blessing and peace of Allah be upon him) said: "Gabriel has just now told me of their answers." . . . "The first portent of the Hour will be a fire that will bring together the people from the east to the west; the first meal of the people of Paradise will be extra-lobe of fish-liver. As for the resemblance of the child to its parents: If a man has sexual intercourse with his wife and gets discharge first, the child will resemble the father, and if the woman gets discharge first, the child will resemble her." On that Abdullah bin Salam said: "I testify that you are the Apostle of Allah."[3]

Here Muhammad is presented with three questions: (1) What is the sign that the end is coming? (2) What will the first meal in Heaven be? (3) How come a child sometimes looks like its father, but other times resembles its mother’s family? Notice that Muhammad’s answers to the first two questions—a great fire in the end-times and fish-liver in heaven—are utterly unfalsifiable; that is, it is impossible to test them or prove them wrong. Muhammad could have just as easily claimed that the "portent of the hour" will be that three frogs will recite the Qur’an, and that the first meal in heaven will be peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. In other words, we have no reason to think that Muhammad’s answers are correct, for we have no way to test their accuracy. Even so, Muhammad’s third answer is falsifiable; it can easily be tested in the light of modern science. So how does Muhammad’s answer stand up to criticism? Not very well. Women don’t have a "discharge" that contributes to the appearance of the offspring. They have an egg, but this isn’t a discharge. Further, a child’s appearance has nothing to do with which parent has the first discharge. Muhammad’s answer, as it turns out, is wrong.

But notice that his answer won him an important Jewish convert, who was amazed at Muhammad’s brilliance. One of Muhammad’s greatest strengths was that he had complete confidence in his own answers, yet this confidence was misplaced. His assurance led others to believe that he must be correct, but he wasn’t. Perhaps the most interesting aspect of Muhammad’s proclamations is that Muslims have never recovered from their awe at his claims, even though many of these claims have been shown to be false. To this day, Muslims retain their misplaced confidence in the sayings of their prophet, and Muhammad’s answers are still winning converts.

(For more on Muhammad’s scientific blunders, see "Talking Ants and Shrinking Humans.")



My Response:


In response to David Wood's comment on the Holy Prophet's quote on discharge, we find this:


Um Sulaim came to Allah’s messenger [peace be upon

him] and said, ‘Is it necessary for a woman to take a

bath after she has a wet dream [nocturnal discharge]?’

The Prophet replied, ‘Yes, if she notices a discharge’.

Um Salamah then covered her face [shyly] and asked,

‘O Allah’s messenger! Does a woman get a discharge

[fertile fluid]?’ He replied, ‘Yes and that is why the

child also resembles the mother’.10


This passage shows that a woman participates equally in

the process of fertilisation and that her characteristics

and traits are also passed on to the child through

‘substances’ (which are now identified as chromosomes)

that are contained in her ‘fertile fluid’, a fact that was not

so obvious to Hamm and Leeuwenhoek who, after seeing

spermatozoa for the first time, misinterpreted their role

and thought that spermatozoa contained small fully formed

babies (see Figure 1).1


(Source: https://www.answering-christianity.com/8_human_genetics.pdf)


Also, since David Wood now attacks the Holy Prophet's prophecies, we will show him prophecies spoken by the Holy Prophet (S) that indeed came true:


" It is narrated by a reliable authority that, while digging the trench, there appeared a very hard rock which could not be broken by the Muslims. Seeing the helplessness of his companions the Prophet took up a pick-axe in his hand and got down in the trench. He struck hard at the stone which gave way emitting a spark. The Prophet raised, with a loud voice the cry of Allahu Akbar (God is the Greatnest) and remakred: " I have been given the keys of Syria. With my own eyes I see the red palaces of that land". He struck another blow, the stone was split and another spark was emitted. He again raised the slogan of Allahu Akbar and observed :" I have been given the keys of Perisa. By God I see the white palaces of Mada'in." The thids attempt broke the stone into pieces and the Prophet announced that he would be given the keys of Yemen. "By God! I have been shown at this place the gates of San'a." (Ibn Hajir al-Asqalani, Fatih al-Bari, Vol. viii, p.400.)


 The pages of history bear out the fact that the prophecies of the Holy Prophet came out to be true in all details and these kingdoms which at the time of the prophecy were so formidable that the Muslims could, by no stretch of imagination, conceive of their conquests, fell like a hosue of cards before the rising tide of the Muslim power."


(Source: The Life of Muhammad PBUH by Abdul Hameed Siddiqui, p. 206 Islamic Publications LTD.)


Syed Sulaimain Nadvi, the illustrious disciple of Allama Shibli Nu'Mani, gives an even longer list:


"The greatest longing of the Muslims was for the conquest of Makkah the city which they were constrained to leave under extremely straitened and miserable circumstances and where their entry was banned. They were in Madinah but the memory of their native land was never eggaced from their minds and they were looking for the day they would enter Makkah victoriously. The glad tindings of the victory of Makkah greatly strengthened dejected spirits and drooping hearts:


Lo! He who hath given thee the Qur'an for a law will surely bring thee home again (28:85)


In the Sura Saf the Muslims were conveyed the glad news of the victory along with the reward in the Hereafter.


Allah hath fulfilled the vision for His Messenger in very truth. Ye shall indeed enter the Invioable place of worship, if Allah Will, secure (having your hair) shaven and cut, not fearing. ( 48:27)


After concluding the Treaty of Hudaibya the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) turned his steps back to Madinah. Mid way between Makkah and Medina Allah revealed to him the chapter of the Holy Qur'an entitled Al-Fath (victory):


Lo: We have given thee (O Muhammad) a signal (victory). (48:1)


The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was extremely happy and he conveyed this good news to Umar (may Allah be pleased with him). Two years after Makkah fell to the Muslims."


(Source: Sirat Un Nabi by Syed Sulaiman Nadvi rendered into English by Mohd. Saaeed Siddiqui, p. 95-96 Vol. III, Kitab Bhavan New Delhi)




" The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) callled upon his companions for the encounter. So they set out and encamped at Badr. He (Allah's Messenger) said: This is the place where Abu Jahl and such and such and such chief of Quraysh would be killed. He placed his hand on the earth (saying) here and here, (and) none of them fell away from the place which the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had indicated by placing his hand on the earth. It was an astonishing prophecy. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was informing his army consisting of three or three and a half hundred ill-equipped men that they would defeat and kill the chiefs of the well-equipped veteran one thousand soldiers of the Quraish.


'Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) reported that Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) called his daughter, Fatimah (during his last illness). He said to her something secretly and she wept. He again said to her something secretly and she laughed. 'Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) farther reported that she said to Fatmiah (may Allah be pleased with her): What is that which Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said to you secretly and you wept and then said you something secretly and you laughed? Thereupon she said: He informed me secretly of his death and so I wept. He then again informed me secretly that I would be the first amongst the members of his family to follow him and so I laughed.


During the Farewell Pilgrimage, the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) proceeded to 'Arafat on the 9th of Dhul Hijja and he said in the farewell address: Ye people! Listen to my words, I will deliver a message to you, for I know not after this year, I shall ever be amongst you again.


When Mu'adh b. Jabal was sent to help the Governor of Yemen in the discharge of his duties, the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said bidding farewell to him: Mu'adh, after this you shall not meet me again."


(Source: Ibid, p. 114-115)


If you read in Deut 18, you find this:


21 You may say to yourselves, "How can we know when a message has not been spoken by the LORD ?" 22 If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the LORD does not take place or come true, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him.


What the Holy Prophet (S) spoke came true, therefore using the criteria given in Deutronomy, he is indeed a true Prophet.


In response to David Wood's attack on the alleged scientific blunder in the Qur'an on ants, Zakir Naik says:


In the past, some people would have probably

mocked at the Qur’an, taking it to be a book of fairy

tales in which ants talk to each other and

communicate sophisticated messages. In recent

times however, research has shown us several facts

about the lifestyle of ants, which were not known

earlier to humankind. Research has shown that the

animals or insects whose lifestyle is closest in

resemblance to the lifestyle of human beings are the

ants. This can be seen from the following findings

regarding ants:

(a) The ants bury their dead in a manner similar

to the humans.

(b) They have a sophisticated system of division

of labour, whereby they have managers,

supervisors, foremen, workers, etc.

(c) Once in a while they meet among themselves

to have a ‘chat’.

(d) They have an advanced method of

communication among themselves.

(e) They hold regular ‘markets’ where they

exchange goods.

(f) They store grain for long periods in winter and

if the grain begins to bud, they cut the roots, as

if they understand that if they leave it to grow,

it will rot. If the grain stored by them gets wet

due to rains, they take it out into the sunlight

to dry, and once dry, they take it back inside

as though they know that humidity will cause

development of root systems which will cause

the grain to rot.


(Source: The Qur'an and Modern Science: Compatible or Incompatible? by Dr. Zakir Abdul Karim Naik, p. 11)



He Wrote:


Reason Three: Boundless Greed

Muhammad made an enticing guarantee to those who joined him in his struggle:

[Muhammad said]: "The example of a Struggle in Allah’s Cause—and Allah knows better who really strives in His Cause—is like a person who fasts and prays continuously. Allah guarantees that He will admit the Struggler in His cause into Paradise if he is killed, otherwise He will return him to his home safely with rewards and war booty."[4]

[Muhammad] said: "Khosrau will be ruined, and there will be no Khosrau after him, and Caesar will surely be ruined and there will be no Caesar after him, and you will spend their treasures in Allah’s Cause."[5]

If a seventh century pagan Arab rejected Islam, he was guaranteed nothing. He may be poor all his life, and he wouldn’t know what would happen to him when he died. But Muhammad guaranteed that if a person dies fighting Islam’s enemies, he will enter Paradise, and that even if he survives, he will return home "safely with rewards and war booty." Either way, pagans were much better off (financially) if they became Muslims.

This promise of rewards and war booty was an important factor in the early spread of Islam. Indeed, using war booty to win converts was part of Muhammad’s strategy. For example, when Muhammad was accused of distributing the spoils of war unevenly, he replied, "Are you disturbed in mind because of the good things of this life by which I win over a people that they may become Muslims while I entrust you to your Islam?"[6] Imam Muslim adds: "[W]hen the Messenger of Allah (may peace be upon him) conquered Hunain he distributed the booty, and he bestowed upon those whose hearts it was intended to win."[7]

Muhammad’s promises of wealth were so great that, when difficulties arose, his followers sometimes complained that he wasn’t delivering on all that he had promised:

The situation became serious and fear was everywhere. The enemy came at them from above and below until the believers imagined vain things, and disaffection was rife among the disaffected to the point that Ma’attib bin Qusyahr brother of B. Amr bin Auf said, "Muhammad used to promise us that we should eat the treasures of Chosroes and Caesar and today not one of us can feel safe in going to the privy!"[8]

These passages stress the importance of wealth and booty as a motive for conversion. Muhammad promised his followers that they would one day spend the treasures of Caesar. He distributed war booty after every military campaign, and he used his wealth to win converts. Thus, many early Muslims embraced the religion with impure motives, yet Muhammad saw nothing wrong with such conversions.


My Response:


In response to the above, Abdul Hammed Siddiqui says:


On his return from Ta'if the Holy Prophet reached the spot where the booty had been collected. He waited for more then a week for the arrival of any deputation of the enemies in order to secure the release of their prisoners. But none turned up. At last the booty was divided as ordained in the Qur'an-- one fifth to Allah and His Messenger, and the rest for the soldiers. After this distribution of the booty, the deputations from various tribes presented themselves to him. They recounted the calamities that had befallen them and urged their claim upon his favour. "There, in those huts among the prisoners are your foster mothers and sisters,-- they that have nursed thee a suckling, a weaned child, a youth generous and noble, and now thou hast risen to this dignity, be gracious unto us, even as the Lord hath been gracious unto thee." How could Muhammad's merciful heart remain unmoved by this fervent appeal. It welled with pity. But he was not whimsical to be swayed completely by emotions. He had to approach people so that none should be disgusted with his decision. If he so desired he could easily force his companions to surrender the part of the booty that had fallen to their lot. But command and compulsion would have defeated the very purpose of his noble gesture, for it was an act of mercy which had its root in the depth of the human heart. So, instead of issuing commands, the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) touched the chords of their hearts. He told them that it was easy for him to release all the prisoners that belonged to him, and to the refugees and helpers but since there were many new converts and idolaters with him, he, therefore, considered it advisable to persuade them to forego the booty fallen to their lot rather than to compel them to do so.


 The Prophet told the deputation: "The prisoners who have fallen to my portion and to that of my family, I give them up unto you; and I will presently speak unto the people concerning the rest. Come again midday prayer when the congregation is assembled and ask of me to make intercession with them for you." " At the appointed time they appeared and made their petition. The citizens of Medina, and those of Mecca also, cheerfully followed the example of Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) but some of the allied tribes, as the Fezara, with 'Uyaina at their head, declined to do so. Muhammad (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) urged the claims of his new converts and promised that such of the allies as were unwilling to part with their share of the prisoners should be recompensed hereafter from the first booty the Lord might give in their hands at the rate of six camels for ever captive. To this they agreed and the prisoners were all released."


"The incident", says Syed Ameer Ali, "which followed after the distribution of the forfeited flocks and herds of the Hawazin, shows not only the hold the Prophet had over the hearts of the Medinites, and the devotion he inspired them with, but it also proves that at no period of his career had he any material reward to offer to his disciples." It also furnished a fine example of his superb balance of mind, his clarity of vision, his reasonableness, quality of mercy, his profound respect for the rights of human beings and his remarkable skill in bringing round his people to his point of view.


 This kindness and generosity on the part of the Holy Prophet won the hearts of many people among the tribes, who tendered their allegiance and became devoted Muslims.


 In the division of the spoils of a larger proportion fell tot he share of the newly converted Meccans than to the people of Medina. Some of the Ansar looked upon this as an act of partiality and their discontent reached the ears of the Prophet. He ordered them to be assembled. He then addresed the in these words:


"O tribe of Ansar, what is the talk that has reached me from you? What is this anguish that you feel in your hearts? Did I not find you going astray and Allah guided you through me? You were disunited and fell upon one another. Did Allah not unite you through me? You were needy did Allah not enrich you through me?


 In response to each of the questions they cried: "Allah and His Apostle are bountiful."


He said, "What prevents you from replying to the Apostle of Allah, O tribe of Ansar?". They said, "What should be the reply, O Apostle of Allah, while to the Lord and to His Apostle belong all benevolence and grace."


 The Prophet (peace be upon him) again said: " But by Allah, ye might have answered and answered truly, for I would have testified to its truth myself: you came to us belied and rejected, and we accepted you: you came as helpless and we helped you; a fugitive, and we took you in; poor and we comforted you. Ye Ansar, do you feel anxiety for the things of this world, wherewith I have sought to incline these people unto the faith in which you are already established. Are you not satisfied, O group of Ansar that the people go with ewes and camels while you go along with the Messenger of Allah to your dwellings. By Him in Whose Hand is my life is, had there been no migration, I would have been one of the Ansar. If the people would go through a valley and passage, and the Ansar go through another valley and passage, I would go through the vally and passage of the Ansar.


 The Ansar are the inner garment and the people are the outer ones. You will surely face, after me, a wave of terrible selfishness. Then have patience until you meet Allah and His Apostle. Verily, I shall be on the 'Haudh. Allah! have mercy on the Ansar, their sons and their sons' sons."


 The audience wept until tears rolled down their beards as they said: "Yes, we are well satisfied, O Prophet of Allah! with our lot and share."


 Then the Apostle left the gathering and the people also dispersed.


 Muhammad (peace of Allah be upon him) was, of course, perfectly right. These newly converted people tribes had little idea of what Islam meant. It was, therefore, imperative that they should be given some material wealth in order to captivate their hearts. It was thus done as a temporary message with the hope that after some time when the beauties of Islamic teachings would have unfolded before them, faith would eventually become the most important concern of their lives, and riches and wealth would pale into insignifigance in their eyes.


  It may be pointed out here that witht he Ansar who had been under the direct influence of the august personality of the Prophet, the concern for worldly riches was a momentary lapse. An overwhelming majority of them had been changed into God-worshipping saints of the highest rank. All cares of life and money were really abandoned by them. The firmness of their faith was attested by the Holy Prophet (peace be upon him). What really rankled their minds was that the worldly favours which the Holy Prophet had shown to the new converts might be due to his change of heart towards them. The speech of the Holy Prophet removed all these doubts and convinced them of the fact that the worldly riches were immaterial for him, and he wished that his followers should rise far above the material temptations of life in their duties towards Islam.


(Source: The Life of Muhammad PBUH by Abdul Hameed Siddiqui, p. 264-263 Islamic Publications LTD.)


So much for boundless greed!



He Wrote:

Reason Four: Fear of Death

Muhammad’s personality, conviction, and eloquence certainly played a role in winning people to Islam. However, he won few supporters when he relied on his "winsome personality" and sincerity to spread Islam. It is only when Muhammad turned to violence and oppression that we find large conversions to Islam. For instance, Muslim writings report a large number of conversions that took place after the assassination of a woman who had criticized Islam:

When the apostle heard what she had said he said, "Who will rid me of Marwan’s daughter?" Umayr bin Adiy al-Khatmi who was with him heard him, and that very night he went to her house and killed her. In the morning he came to the apostle and told him what he had done and he said, "You have helped God and His apostle, O Umayr!" When he asked if he would have to bear any evil consequences the apostle said, "Two goats won’t butt their heads about her," so Umayr went back to his people. . . . The day after Bint Marwan was killed the men of B. Khatma became Muslims because they saw the power of Islam.[9]

Whereas the men of Khatma became Muslims when they saw Islam’s power over others, many individuals converted because their own lives were in danger. Ka’b bin Zuhayr heard from his brother that Muhammad "had killed some of the men in Mecca who had satirized and insulted him and that the Quraysh poets who were left . . . had fled in all directions."[10] The brother then suggested that Ka’b go to Muhammad and convert before it was too late. Ka’b heeded his brother’s advice:

When Ka’b received the missive he was deeply distressed and anxious for his life. His enemies in the neighbourhood spread alarming reports about him saying that he was as good as slain. Finding no way out, he wrote his ode in which he praised the apostle and mentioned his fear and the slanderous reports of his enemies. Then he set out for Medina and stayed with a man of Juhayna whom he knew, according to my information. He took him to the apostle when he was praying morning prayers, and he prayed with him. The man pointed out the apostle to him and told him to go and ask for his life. He got up and went and sat by the apostle and placed his hand in his, the apostle not knowing who he was. He said, "O apostle, Ka’b bin Zhayr has come to ask security from you as a repentant Muslim. Would you accept him as such if he came to you?" When the apostle said that he would, he confessed that he was Ka’b bin Zuhayr.[11]

History also shows that some were directly threatened with death (in the presence of Muhammad) if they didn’t convert:

[Muhammad] said: "Woe to you, Abu Sufyan, isn’t it time that you recognize that I am God’s apostle?" He answered, "As to that I still have some doubt." I said to him, "Submit and testify that there is no God but Allah and that Muhammad is the apostle of God before you lose your head," so he did so.[12]

Abu Sufyan doubted the prophethood of Muhammad, yet he was told to convert before he lost his head. Fully aware of the countless people that had been murdered by Muhammad, Abu Sufyan submitted to the Prophet.

Thus, fear of death played a crucial role in converting people to Islam. Since Islam didn’t really take root until Muhammad began spreading it through violence, fear of death may have been the single most important factor in the early spread of Islam.

(For more on Muhammad’s violence, see "Murdered by Muhammad.")



My Response:


In response to the alleged assassination of Asma Bint Marwam, we find:


The Killing of Asma': True Story or Forgery?

Basically the charge is that the Prophet(P) had ordered the killing of Asma' when she insulted him with her poetry. As it is usually the case where the history of Islam and the character of the Prophet(P) is concerned, it is left to the Muslims to throw some light on authenticity of the story in which this incident is reported by the sources and educate the missionaries in matters which they have no clue about.

The story of the killing of Asma' bint Marwan is mentioned by Ibn Sa'd in Kitab At-Tabaqat Al-Kabir[3] and by the author of Kinz-ul-'Ummal under number 44131 who attributes it to Ibn Sa'd, Ibn 'Adiyy and Ibn 'Asaker. What is interesting is that Ibn 'Adiyy mentions it in his book Al-Kamel on the authority of Ja'far Ibn Ahmad Ibn Muhammad Ibn As-Sabah on authority of Muhammad Ibn Ibrahim Ash-Shami on authority of Muhammad Ibn Al-Hajjaj Al-Lakhmi on authority of Mujalid on authority of Ash-Shu'abi on authority of Ibn 'Abbas, and added that

...this isnād (chain of reporters) is not narrated on authority of Mujalid but by Muhammad Ibn Al-Hajjaj and they all (other reporters in the chain) accuse Muhammad Ibn Al-Hajjaj of forging it.[4]

It is also reported by Ibn al-Gawzi in Al-'Ilal[5] and is listed among other flawed reports.

So according to its isnād, the report is forged - because one of its reporters is notorious for fabricating hadīth. Hence, such a story is rejected and is better off being put into the trash can.

(Source: https://www.answering-christianity.com/karim/forgeries_about_killing.htm)


Now, commenting on the story of Ka'b bin Zuhayr, well for one thing, this story would only be true if the story of Meccan 10 would be true, and we know this because it says this (above):


Ka’b bin Zuhayr heard from his brother that Muhammad "had killed some of the men in Mecca who had satirized and insulted him and that the Quraysh poets who were left . . . had fled in all directions."[10


However, scholars say there are flaws in the narrations of the Meccan 10 story:


" Chroniclers name ten persons, who, notwithstanding the general amnesty granted to the Meccans, were declared to be punishable with death whenever found. Some of them like 'Abdullah Ibn Khatal and Miqyas Ibn Subaba, stood charged with murder and were executed to pay for the blood they had shed. But others had only been guilty of torturing and tormenting the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), while at Mecca or composing slanderous verses against him. One was a woman who had sung satirical songs against the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), and was put to death.

But this statement, when subjected to higher criticism as developed by the traditionists cannot stand scrutiny. Barring a few- not more then half a dozen- which of the Meccans had refrained from active participation in the persecution of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). Yet they were all given their freedom. The victims alleged to have been put to death were answeable for crimes much less serious. Let us remember 'Aisha (Allah be pleased with her) saying that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) never sought a personal revenge, a report that appears in all Six Books of Authentic Ahadith. A woman had put poison in his food at Khaibar, but when asked whether she was to be slain, the Prophet's answer was a clear "No". If a Jewess, guilty of attempting murder by poison could go unharmed, how, on earth could the offenders of Mecca fail to share his mercy, in spite of the fact that they were not charged with anything as black as that.

But let alone this logical criticism, we shall have to admit that the story even if judged on the basis of reports, is unacceptable. Sahih-Al-Bukhari mentions the execution of Ibn Khatal alone, and this is admitted on all hands that he was executed for a murder. The execution of Miqyas too was a retaliatory sentence. All such reports, as ascribe the execution of others merely to their having harrased the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) in the past, have Ibn Ishaq as the last narrator at the top; and in the terminology of the traditionalists such reports are called Mursal and are not to be relied on.

The most reliable report that can be referred to in this connection is the one mentioned in Abu Dawud, which says that on the day when Mecca fell, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) declared that four persons could not be promised immunity. But Abu Dawud, adds that for this report he could not find authoritative sources of desired merit. Then he quotes the report about Ibn Khatal. The report quoted earlier has Ahmad Ibn Mufaddal as one of the narrators, whom Azdi calls a narrator of Munkar traditions. Another link in the series has Isbat Ibn Nadr whom Nasa'i does not believe to be quite weighty. Certainly, flaws are not enough to make up good case for rejecting a narration. Yet in view of the importance of the issue in hand even this much of deficiency is enough to create doubts.

It is certain that some Meccan notables who formed the vanguard of the opposition did flee away from Meccan, when the approach of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) came to be known. That they left because of a death sentence is a mere product of Ibn Ishaq's imagination. Ibn Ishaq names 'Ikrima, the son of Abu Jahl, as well as one of the proclaimed culprits. In Muwatta' by Imam Malik, which in accuracy and reliability has, according to Imam Shafi'i, no equal under the sun except the Qur'an, this incident has been narrated as below : Umm Hakin, daugher of Harith Ibn Hisham, was the wife of 'Ikrima, son of Abu Jahl. She embraced Islam on the day Mecca fell. But her husband 'Ikrima Ibn Abu Jahl fled to Yaman, to keep away from Islam. Umm Hakim went to Yaman, and invited him to Islam. He believed and came to Mecca. As the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) saw him, he rose to his feet in joy and walked up to him in a hurry, even without the upper garment ( a sheet of cloth) on his body. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) then initiated him into Islam.

It must also be noted that those who were granted protection were not forced to embrace Islam. Historians and biographers have all stated that the Muslim force at the battle of Hunain, which took place a little after the Fall of Mecca, had in its ranks a good number of non-believers from Mecca who still stuck to their old beliefs. And it was their presence that brought on defeat, for they could not stand the first assault, and this disorder forced the Muslims to follow suit. "

(Source: Sirat-Un-Nabi, by Allama Shibli Nu'Mani, rendered into English by M. Tayyib Bakhsh Budayuni, Kazi Publications Lahore, Vol. II, p. 199-203, bold and underlined emphasis ours)


So if Meccan 10 is wrong, then obviously the narration on Ka'b bin Zuhayr is wrong.


As for Abu Sufyan, well again, this story is found in the works of Ibn Ishaq, and the Allama says above:


But let alone this logical criticism, we shall have to admit that the story even if judged on the basis of reports, is unacceptable. Sahih-Al-Bukhari mentions the execution of Ibn Khatal alone, and this is admitted on all hands that he was executed for a murder. The execution of Miqyas too was a retaliatory sentence. All such reports, as ascribe the execution of others merely to their having harrased the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) in the past, have Ibn Ishaq as the last narrator at the top; and in the terminology of the traditionalists such reports are called Mursal and are not to be relied on.


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We decided to skip responding to David Wood's bottom part, since it is nothing but a conclusion. As clearly shown above, his argument has been refuted, and we highly reccommend any Christian, Jew, Hindu etc. to check their sources first, to see the authenticity of their sources first, then critique the Exalted Character of the Holy Prophet (S).


And Allah SWT Knows Best!








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