Belief in Prophets
According to Islam, God created humans for a noble purpose: to worship Him and lead a virtuous life based on His teachings and guidance. In order to convey the purpose of their existence to humans, God sent clear and practical instructions through His prophets.
Muslims believe that a prophet was selected for every nation at some point in its history. Some of the prophets of God include Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Moses, Jesus, and Muhammad, peace be upon them all. Muslims believe there were about 124,000 prophets in all, of whom only 25 are mentioned by name in the Quran, the holy book of Islam.
Each prophet conveyed the consistent divine message of worshiping one God and living a morally upright life. However, the message of these prophets was lost, abandoned, or changed over time, with only parts of the original message remaining intact. God sent Muhammad (pbuh) as the final prophet to all of humanity in the 7th century C.E. to restore the divine message of all prophets.
Islam, Judaism and Christianity share the core concept that God sent prophets to guide their fellow people. However, Islam also differs from these two faiths on important aspects related to prophethood. For instance, Islam teaches that all prophets of God were of high moral character and did not succumb to the sins their people committed. Therefore, Islam exonerates Aaron even though the Old Testament depicts him as someone who worshipped the golden calf. In addition, Islam strongly rejects deification of prophets. So, Jesus is revered as a prophet of God. At the same time, Islam recognizes that prophets were capable of human errors of judgment, but these unintended mistakes did not diminish their superior integrity.
In conclusion, Muslims are obligated to believe in and honor all of the prophets, and to testify that prophethood has been completed with the coming of Prophet Muhammad.
“Say, ‘We believe in God and in what was sent down to us and what was sent down to Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, and the Tribes, and what was given to Moses, Jesus, and all the prophets by their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them, and we devote ourselves to Him.’” (Quran, 2:136)