Abraham and Ishmael


In the book “Abraham: A Journey to the Heart of Three Faiths” by Bruce Feiler, a Muslim man interviewed for the book states the Ishmael was the son to be sacrificed by Abraham on the mountain.

Is this a universal Muslim belief or the belief of one particular Muslim man?


It is a solid belief of Muslims. There is a correct hadeeth in it. The one to be sacrificed was the Only son of Abraham. His first Born.



I liked that book. And it is an Islamic belief. But I’m not sure where they fall out on the covenant with the Jews. Since this is renewed by God right after the binding.


The Quran does not mention Ishmael…here are the quotes:

“O my Lord, grant me a righteous (son)!” So We gave him the **good news **of a boy ready to suffer and forbear. Then when (the son) reached (the age of) (serious) work with him, he said, “O my son, I see in a vision that I offer thee in sacrifice. Now see what is thy view!” (The son) said, “O my father, do as thou art commanded. Thou will find me if Allah so wills one practicing patience and constancy!” So when they had both submitted their wills (to Allah) and he had laid him prostrate on his forehead (for sacrifice), We called out to him, “O Abraham, thou hast already fulfilled the vision!” Thus indeed do we reward those who do right. For this was obviously a trial – and We ransomed him with a momentous sacrifice. 37:99-107

Has the story reached thee of the honored guests of Abraham? Behold, they entered his presence and said 'Peace!" He said “Peace”. … They said, “Fear not,” and they gave him **glad tidings of a son **endowed with knowledge. But his wife came forward (laughing) aloud! She smote her forehead and said, "A barren old woman! " They said, “Even so has thy Lord spoken: and He is full of wisdom and knowledge.” 51:24-25, 28-30

Peace and salutation to Abraham! Thus indeed do we reward those who do right. For he was one of Our believing Servants. And We gave him the **good news of Isaac **- a prophet - one of the righteous. We blessed him and Isaac. 37:109-113

Regarding the Islamic scholars, some believe it was Isaac, others Ishmael.

When i say, when ye in doubt, refer to the people of the book :stuck_out_tongue:


The Quran did Mention Ishmael. But in the verse you quoted above he mentioned Isac. The verses above has nothing to do with The sacrifice. Its a tiding that he wil give him a son from Sarah even if she is old.

regarding islamic scholars, Yes some say it is Isac but this is because they didnt hear the correct hadeeth of the Prophet. We have many examples of Islamic scholars who had opinions that was later on reversed when they had heared an authenticated hadeeth traced back to the prophet. Imam Al Shafe3ee said ‘’ If you have heared a hadeeth that is contrary to my opinions then throw my opinions and go by the hadeeth’’

The companions went to different lands. some Iraw some Egypt and at the time they didnt have telephone. They had tpo travel to each other . So was teh scholars after them. Thts why not all hadeeth didnt reach every body at the same time. This is very common Knowledge in Islam. if you dont know it then you will be confused.

Ishmael was the first Born and elder . A rightful son and his mother is Abrahams wife . As declared by the OT itself.

The Jews long ago later inserted Isac out of Envy that it wasnt their direct ancestor. For they wanted this honour to be in their lineage . I dont accuse the Jews of Today of anything because that is how the Torah got to them. But thats how it went sadly.



I think it was Muhammed that did the name switch. I will go with the more ancient source ie. the Torah.


Its wrong to say its an Islamic belief since the ulama (Muslim scholars) are in dispute and they are divided on whether it was Isaac or Ishmael. Syiahs believe its Isaac, while, Sunnis believe its Ishmael.

Have you read what St Augustine of Hippo says about this? He says Isaac represents the Church, which represents Christians. The Church has two children, Jacob (ie good Christians) and Esav (ie leftist Christians). Ishmael is confirmed to be Jews by both the writings of the Church fathers and the text of the New Testament.

Muslims, IMO correspond to the ancient Jews who murdered Jesus our Lord. They are the Pharisees that our Lord condemned as hypocrites. Modern Jews, OTOH are Saducees, who our Lord said do not know the Scriptures or power of God.


It is a running theme in Torah that the second son takes the first son’s rights. Issac re Ishmael (although taking rights here is not really correct as Ishmael is not the legal son of Abraham and Sarah); Jacob and Esau, Joseph and his brothers. It is not surprising that the first son loses out between Issac and Ishmael.


in Judaism Valke, is an illegitimate son considered son ?



Well, Ishmael was not an illegitmate child. But the halacha in Judaism has a list of prohibited relations, such as incest, a woman who is not divorced with another man, etc. Children from such unions are considered illegitmate (mamzerim). However, just being born out of wedlock does not make a child illegitmate under jewish law, and there is no stigma attached to the child.

Ishmael would not have been a mamzer.
A Mamzer is still a jew, but there are certain prohibitions that apply. He can only marry another mamzer, of a convert to Judaism (which is weird because converts are considered the same as other jews. Don’t know why this prohibtion is there).


ok thx :slight_smile:

but one thing is clear though…God promised Abraham BEFORE Sarah asked him to sleep with Hagar…So Hagar’s request and Abraham’s consent was a result of mistrust and not from God.
God’s promise was fulfilled AFTER …it’s just that both of them did not trust God’s timing, especially that Sarah was too old.


Yes, Abraham slept with Hagar at the insistance of Sarah. Sarah was aware of Hashem’s promise when she gave Hagar to Abraham. there was no promise made regarding Ishmael until after Hagar and Ishmael were sent into the desert. (According to Torah. Don’t know what the Koran says).


:thumbsup: thx

in fact, the NT says the same thing:

“But just as at that time he who was born according to the flesh persecuted him who was born according to the Spirit, so also it is now.”

an echo to:

“The child grew and was weaned, and on the day Isaac was weaned Abraham held a great feast. But Sarah saw that THE SON whom Hagar the Egyptian had borne to Abraham WAS MOCKING, and she said to Abraham, ‘Get rid of that slave woman and her son, for that slave woman’s son will never share in the inheritance with my son Isaac.’” Genesis 21:8-10

Both OT and NT agree on Isaac’s importance over Ishmael.

But it seems Jews and Christians sat together and changed the scriptures because the Muslim exegetis “must” be correct. How come both NT and OT agree on Isaac? they “must” be corrupt.:stuck_out_tongue:


Again from NT:

By faith Abraham, when put to the test, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was ready to offer his only son,
of whom it was said, “**Through Isaac descendants shall bear your name.” **

and James in:

Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he offered his son **Isaac **upon the altar?

But it is not that the word of God has failed. **For not all who are of Israel are Israel,
nor are they all children of Abraham because they are his descendants; but “It is through Isaac that descendants shall bear your name.” **8
**This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as descendants. **


For it is written that Abraham had two sons, **one by the slave woman and the other by the freeborn woman.
The son of the slave woman was born naturally, the son of the freeborn through a promise. **

Seems both Jews and Christians have an agenda :stuck_out_tongue:



Isaac only bore the wood of the sacrifice, as the Lord the wood of the cross. And he laughed mystically, prophesying that the Lord should fill us with joy, who have been redeemed from corruption by the blood of the Lord. Isaac did everything but suffer, as was right, yielding the precedence in suffering to the Word. Furthermore, there is an intimation of the divinity of the Lord in His not being slain. For Jesus rose again after His burial, having suffered no harm, like Isaac released from sacrifice. And in defence of the point to be established, I shall adduce another consideration of the greatest weight. The Spirit calls the Lord Himself a child, thus prophesying by Esaias: “Lo, to us a child has been born, to us a son has been given, on whose own shoulder the government shall be; and His name has been called the Angel of great Counsel.” Who, then, is this infant child? He according to whose image we are made little children. By the same prophet is declared His greatness: “Wonderful, Counsellor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace; that He might fulfil His discipline: and of His peace there shall be no end.” O the great God! O the perfect child! The Son in the Father, and the Father in the Son. And how shall not the discipline of this child be perfect, which extends to all, leading as a schoolmaster us as children who are His little ones? He has stretched forth to us those hands of His that are conspicuously worthy of trust. To this child additional testimony is borne by John, “the greatest prophet among those born of women:” Behold the Lamb of God!" For since Scripture calls the infant children lambs, it has also called Him–God the Word–who became man for our sakes, and who wished in all points to be made like to us–“the Lamb of God”–Him, namely, that is the Son of God, the child of the Father.

TERTULLIAN (circa 190’s)

[The world} is freed in baptism by the “wood” of Christ, that is, of His passion; in order that what had formerly perished through the “tree” in Adam, should be restored through the “tree” in Christ? … This “wood,” again, **Isaac the son of Abraham personally carried for his own sacrifice, when God had enjoined that he should be made a victim to Himself. But, because these had been mysteries(26) which were being kept for perfect fulfilment in the times of Christ, Isaac, on the one hand, with his “wood,” was reserved, the ram being of-feted which was caught by the horns in the bramble;(1) Christ, on the other hand, in His times, carried His “wood” on His own shoulders, adhering to the horns of the cross, with a thorny crown encircling His head. For Him it behoved to be made a sacrifice on behalf of all Gentiles, who “was led as a sheep for a victim, and, like a lamb voiceless before his shearer, so opened not His mouth”

toooo many proof for Isaac.





Thank you Valke for your input.

Ishmael was not an illigetemate son. same as The sons of Jacob were also not illligetemate just because Israel had wives that were servants to his first wife. Now would we go about and claim that around half the people of Israel are not ligetamate just because Jacob had their mothers as wives that were servants to his first wife?

All of us know that this isnt the case and it doesnt stand. Ancient Jews wanted it to be Isac because of the Glory associated with it to their ancestor. Many Current day christians want it because it is a symbol to the later supposed sacrifice by Jesus.

This doesnt make these sons loose any rights. Thus as i said . The Torah Explicitloy refered to Ishmael’s mother as Abrahams wife. Their relation wasnt illigetamete .

If it was God would intercede and object . And the Patriarch Abraham would hear and obey. Nothing of that happened.

Thus My point. Ishmael was the sacrifice . He IS a ligetamate son. Isac was an insertion .

But this belief as it is confirmed in Islam it doesnt add or subtract or affect ones faith. This is a past incident. The reason Muslims are saying it was Ishmael is that the truth it was Ishmael .

Its the sacrifice that cuts the most when you only have ONE son. Thus it is even Logical that it would be Ishmael.

Thank you all



I agree Ishmael was not illegitimate. But Torah does not say Hagar was Abraham’s wife. And I disagree that Issac was an insert. But since we are following different texts, that is no surprise. And as I said earlier, Torah makes it very clear that being born first does not entitled one to inherit the covenant. Almost every story involving two brothers has the younger brother taking what would have traditionally gone to the older.


Well Mo told his followers to look at the Old and New Testaments to verify what he was saying, so they kind of have to claim the “insert” thing as an easy out. Otherwise they would actually have to explain all the glaring inconsistencies like this one…

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