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Allah: The Moon god myth

"And from among His Signs are the night and the day, and the sun and the moon. Do not bow down (prostrate) to the sun nor to the moon, but only bow down (prostrate) to "Allah" Who created them, if you (really) worship Him." [Quran 41:37]
Robert Morey first wrote about his “Allah is the moon-god” theory in The Islamic Invasion (1992) and then later reproduced it with minor changes in a twenty page booklet entitled The Moon-God Allah in the Archeology of the Middle East (1994).  The latter has fallen out of print, and Morey himself refers readers to The Islamic Invasion “for more information” about his moon-god theory.  It is this book then that I will refute.
Morey’s theory was refuted by Muslim preacher Shabir Ally in Robert Morey’s Moon-god Myth & Other Deceptive Attacks on Islam, which is a surgical deconstruction of Morey’s nonsense. Morey whined that Ally used “ad hominem slurs such as ‘deceptive’ and ‘dishonest.’”  Ally did say that Morey used “deceptive methods” and “dishonest tactics,” but since this was in reference to Morey’s methods and tactics–and not his person–how then is this an ad hominem attack, let alone a “slur?”
Fascinatingly, in this very same article Robert Morey referred to the Muslims in the audience as “terrorists;” now that’s a slur, one which conflates Muslim with terrorist.  Morey issued his response to Shabir Ally, saying (emphasis added):
Let every Muslim terrorist please take note of the fact that I, Robert Morey, did not invent the idea that Allah came from Il or Ilah.  Nor did I invent the idea that Allah in pre-Islamic times can be traced back to the Moon-God.
Not only this, but Morey insinuates that Shabir Ally is a terrorist, saying his book is “an example of terrorism.”  And yet somehow Robert Morey is complaining of ad hominem attacks?  This is a case of right-wing projection.  In fact, Ally maintained a rather mild tone in his writing, and did not question Morey’s academic qualifications and credentials.
Having said that, I have myself called to question Robert Morey’s academic qualifications and credentials–and have found them to be completely bogus.  It is completely licit in academic circles to question the legitimacy of a source, especially if someone furthers a bizarre and new view on a controversial topic.
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Robert Morey first mentions the moon-god theory on page 42 of The Islamic Invasion.  Here he provides the background behind his theory: he argues that moon-worship was the dominant religious practice in pre-Islamic Arabia.  (He will later argue that the Prophet Muhammad simply continued worship of this moon-god.)  To buttress his theory, Morey argues that:
1) The Sabeans were the dominant religious group before Muhammad’s time.
2) The Sabeans primarily worshiped the moon.
3) The Quran itself mentions the Sabeans and their worship of the sun, moon, and stars!
These three points are used to argue that the Prophet Muhammad simply continued the worship of the Sabean moon-god.  In Morey’s own words on page 42:
The Sabeans
The dominant religion that had grown very powerful just before Muhammad’s time was that of the Sabeans’.
The Sabeans had an astral religion in which they worshiped the heavenly bodies.  The moon was viewed as a male deity and the sun as the female deity.  Together they produced other deities such as the stars.  The Quran refers to this in Sura 41:37 and elsewhere.
They used a lunar calendar to regulate their religious rites.  For example, a month of fasting was regulated by the phases of the moon.
The Sabean pagan rite of fasting began with the appearance of a crescent moon and did not cease until the crescent moon reappeared.  This would later be adopted as one of the five pillars of Islam.
All three of these points are dubious.  With regard to the first point, there is no proof at all that the Sabeans were the dominant religious group before Muhammad’s time.  Robert Morey provides absolutely no proof for this statement of his (like many of the other claims in his book).  Morey simply assumes that if he says something definitively enough, the reader will just believe him.
However, the truth is that the Sabeans were but a small minority in Mecca, to the point where just a few generations later the Arab chroniclers weren’t even quite sure who the Sabeans were, a confusion that continues up until this day.  Therefore, Robert Morey’s starting point–that the Sabeans constituted the dominant religious group in Mecca at the time of Muhammad–has absolutely no factual basis to it whatsoever.
What little is known about the religion of the pre-Islamic Arabs is that they were polytheistic and worshiped rocks and idols.  Says Professor Jonathan P. Berkey on p.42 The Formation of Islam (emphasis added):
The dominant religious traditions of pre-Islamic Arabia remained polytheistic, but little can in fact be known with certainty about them. There has been much debate among historians of religion about the origin and character of Arabian religion–for example, whether it represented a “primitive” form of Semitic religion, or instead a degenerate form of the more sophisticated traditions of the Fertile Crescent (paralleling the traditional Muslim account according to which Muhammad’s role was to restore a primitive monotheism associated with Abraham).  There are signs of litholatry [the worship of stones] among the Arabs, although by the time of Muhammad most of the various deities had acquired faces and personalities.  Several hundred Arabian deities are known from the Muslim sources, the most prominent of which were those identified by the Arabs as the three “daughters of Allah”–Manat, Allat, and al-’Uzza–a trinity which was, according to the later Muslim tradition, accorded a special place among Muhammad’s tribe of Quraysh and their allies around the advent of Islam, and to which prominent (although ambiguous) mention is made in the Koran.  Behind the specific deities, the Arabs were also probably aware of Allah.  For some he may have represented a remote creator god, possibly related to the Semitic El; some Western scholars have suggested (again, paralleling in a way the traditional Muslim account) that he represents a deus otiosus [a creator god who largely retires from the world and is no longer involved in its daily operation] who had over the centuries been eclipsed by more particularized and localized deities.  Allah apparently played little role in religious cult.
He concludes:
It is in fact difficult to say much with confidence regarding pre-Islamic Arabian religion.
Prof. Berkey’s quote is actually sufficient to refute the entire moon-god theory.  Let us, however, focus on the following:  Morey’s claim that the “dominant religion that had grown very powerful just before Muhammad’s time was that of the Sabeans’…[who] had an astral religion in which they worshiped the heavenly bodies” is not supported by the evidence.  Where did Morey get his information that the “Sabean religion” was the predominant religious group before Muhammad’s arrival?  In fact, this is completely contrived.
The pre-Islamic Arabs were polytheistic and worshiped “several hundred Arabian deities.”  They started out as stone-worshipers, and these stones eventually developed into anthropomorphic idols.  The pre-Islamic Arabs worshiped many different gods.  The moon-god was but one of many–and not even the most important of them.  As Prof. Paul Fouracre puts it on page 320 of his book The New Cambridge Medieval History, the pre-Islamic Arabs “were animistic and varied; they worshiped stones, trees, and idols.”  The fact that the pre-Islamic Arabs worshiped the moon doesn’t mean Allah is the moon-god any more than he is the stone, tree, sun, or star god.
So, why then did Robert Morey single out the moon, as opposed to stones, trees, the sun, and the stars?  Is it not simply to buttress his conspiracy theory?  Such is the modus operandi of the conspiracy theorist: facts that support a conspiracy are highlighted and exaggerated, while other facts are minimized or ignored altogether.
As for what gave him the idea in the first place, Morey most likely noted the crescent symbol often used to represent Islam, and this gave him the idea that Muslims worshiped the moon.  The Moozlums use the symbol of the crescent to represent their faith, so they must then worship the moon!Quite simply, the moon-god nonsense is based primarily in this simple, simplistic, and stupid idea–one which I will refute later in this article series.
I have as of yet completely ignored the white elephant in the room: scholars are unsure whether or not the Sabeans are to be considered synonymous with the Sabians mentioned in the Quran, as the Arabic spelling of the two words differs significantly.  What is perfectly clear, however, is that neither the Sabeans or Sabians were the predominant religious group at the time prior to Muhammad’s arrival.  Indeed, the early Muslims were themselves unsure who the Sabians mentioned in the Quran refers to, a confusion that hardly would have existed had the Sabeans/Sabians been the predominant religious group prior to the arrival of the Islamic religion.
Morey’s second point–that the Sabeans/Sabians worshiped the moon–is also questionable.  He passes this off as undisputed fact, when in fact scholars–both Islamic and Western–are not exactly sure who or what the Sabeans/Sabians worshiped.  This is not surprising, considering that it is not even accepted who exactly the Sabeans/Sabians were!
As for his third point, Morey tries to invoke the Quran as proof of his argument, saying:
The Sabeans had an astral religion in which they worshiped the heavenly bodies.  The moon was viewed as a male deity and the sun as the female deity.  Together they produced other deities such as the stars.  The Quran refers to this in Sura 41:37 and elsewhere.
In fact, verse 41:37 (and the surrounding passage in which it is contained in) says nothing at all about the Sabeans/Sabians.  The Sabians are only mentioned three times in the Quran: in verses 2:62, 5:69, and 22:17.  In each of these three instances, no mention at all is given of any moon-god.  As for 41:37 which Morey mentioned, this verse actually is a slap on the face of the moon-god theory, as it reads:
And from among [God's] signs are the night and the day, and the sun and the moon.  Do not bow down in worship to the sun or to the moon, but bow down to the God (Allah) who created them, if it is truly Him you serve.  (Quran, 41:37)
How much clearer could the Quran be?  This single verse is enough to refute the entire moon-god theory: the Quran, the holy book of Islam, categorically forbids worship of the moon.  Although this verse does indicate that moon-worship existed in pre-Islamic Arabia, it should be remembered that (1) the moon was but one of many objects the pagan Arabs worshiped and (2) the Quran categorically rejected and forbade such worship.  Allah was not the moon according to Islamic theory; rather, He created the moon, along with the sun, the stars, and everything else.
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In addition to 41:37 above, there are other verses along the same lines–verses that show clearly that the Quran teaches that the sun and the moon are merely creations of God (Allah) and not God (Allah) the Creator:
Your Lord is God (Allah), who created the heavens and earth in six Days, then established Himself on the throne; He makes the night cover the day in swift pursuit; He created the sun, moon, and stars to be subservient to His command; all creation and command belong to Him.Exalted be God, Lord of all the worlds!  (Quran, 7:54)
It is He (God) who made the sun a lamp, and the moon a light. (Quran, 10:5)
It is God (Allah) who raised up the heavens with no visible supports and then established Himself on the throne; He has subjected the sun and the moon each to pursue its course for an appointed time; He regulates all things… (Quran, 13:2)
It is He (Allah) who created night and day, the sun and the moon, each floating in its orbit.  (Quran, 21:33)
Not only does the Quran say that Allah created the moon, but it also says that He will basically destroy it on Judgment Day:
When is the Day of Resurrection?  (Say:) When the eyes are dazzled, and the moon becomes dark, and the sun and the moon are fused together,then on that Day will man exclaim: “Where can I escape?” (Quran, 75:6-10)
The Hour draws near and the moon is rent asunder. (Quran, 54:1)
In yet another passage, one of God’s prophets–Abraham (Ibrahim in Arabic)–explicitly rejects moon-worship after he notices that the moon sets:
When the night grew dark over him [Abraham] saw a star and said, ‘This is my Lord,’ but when it set, he said, ‘I do not like things that set.’  And when he saw the moon rising he said, ‘This is my Lord,’ but when it too set, he said, ‘If my Lord does not guide me, I shall be one of those who go astray.’  Then he saw the sun rising and cried, ‘This is my Lord! This is greater.’ But when the sun set, he said, ‘My people, I disown all that you worship beside God (Allah). I have turned my face as a true believer towards Him who created the heavens and the earth. I am not one of the polytheists.’ (Quran, 6:77-78)
Another one of God’s prophets, Joseph, has a divine dream which involves the moon (along with the stars and the sun) bowing down to him which would make no sense if Muslims understood the moon as God (God does not bow to His creation):
Joseph said to his father, “Father, I dreamed of eleven stars and the sun and the moon: I saw them all bow down before me.” (Quran, 12:4)
The moon (along with the earth, the sun, the stars, and everything else in the universe) bows down in worship to God (Allah):
Do you not see that everything in the heavens and the earth bow down in worship to God (Allah): the sun, the moon, the stars, the mountains, the trees, and the animals? (Quran, 22:18)
The moon not only submits itself to God, but God made the moon subservient to humankind (and therefore the moon cannot be God, since humans are subservient to God–not the other way around):
It is God (Allah) who created the heavens and the earth, who has sent down water from the sky and with it brought forth produce to nourish you.  He has made ships subservient to you, sailing the sea by His command, and the rivers as well.  He made the sun and the moon subservient to you, constant in their courses.  He has made the night and the day subservient to you… (Quran, 14:32-33)
By his command, [God] has made the night and the day, the sun, moon,and stars all subservient to you. (Quran, 16:12)
The Quran explains that God created the moon to help humans calculate the months of the year and to make a calendar:
They ask you about the crescent moons.  Say: “They are time-marks for the people and help determine the time of Hajj (pilgrimage).”  (Quran, 2:189)
[God] made the sun and the moon for reckoning time. (Quran, 6:96)
An interesting factoid would be worthwhile to mention here: did you know that the English word month comes from moon?  AstronomyOnline explains:
Phases and Time:
The Moon has played a vital role in the formation of our Calendar. The word “month” comes from a root word “moon” or “moonth,” the time it takes the Moon to go from New Moon to New Moon.
It seems like the Quran’s understanding of the moon is pretty spot-on: the moon helps calculate the months of the year.
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There are other Quranic verses that could be cited, but for brevity’s sake (since I’ve always been known for brevity) let’s move on to the next point…
Update I: Page II has been published.
Robert Morey et al. argue that the pre-Islamic pagans of Arabia worshiped a moon-god called Allah.  The reality, however, is that there was a moon-god but his name was Sin, not Allah.  Sin had absolutely no relation whatsoever to Allah.  Bible scholar Rick Brown writes:
It is in fact true that before the coming of Islam many “gods” and idols were worshiped in the Middle East, but the name of the moon god was Sîn, not Allah, and he was not particularly popular in [Northern] Arabia, the birthplace of Islam.
Moon-worship was certainly not unheard of in Arabia, something we can safely say based on the Quran itself, which categorically condemns worship of the moon.  In other words, one of the strongest proofs for the historicity of moon-worship comes from the Quran’s rejection of it.
No verse in the Quran links Sin or the moon to Allah. Instead, the only mention in the Quran of moon-worship comes in the form of categorical rejection of such a practice. Yet, somehow the anti-Muslim ideologue links Sin and the moon to Allah–without any proof whatsoever to do this.  This, as Shabir Ally pointed out, is how Robert Morey draws “conclusions for which no evidence was even suggested, much less established.”
Brown concludes:
There is no clear evidence that moon-worship was prominent among the Arabs in any way or that the crescent was used as the symbol of a moon god, and Allah was certainly not the moon god’s name.
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Similarly, some anti-Muslim ideologues claim that Allah refers to the pagan idol Hubal, and that Hubal was a moon-god.  This seems to be a case of throwing the kitchen sink at Islam and hoping something sticks: well, was Allah the same as the moon-god Sin or the pagan idol Hubal?  Since Sin and Hubal were clearly not the same, how can Allah have been both?  This exposes the insincerity of the anti-Muslim camp, whereby they will attribute whatever they possibly can to Allah and Islam in general, so long as it is something derogatory, even if it contradicts one of their earlier claims or other anti-Muslim beliefs.
Just as it can be concluded that Allah was not the moon-god based on the Quran’s categorical rejection of moon-worship, so too can we safely conclude that Allah was not the same as Hubal based on the fact that the Prophet Muhammad quite clearly differentiated between the two.  When the pagans of Arabia won a decisive battlefield victory against the early Muslims, the leader of the pagans (Abu Sufyan) yelled in triumph:
“Superior is Hubal!”
To which the Prophet Muhammad replied in defiance:
“Allah is more exalted and more majestic!”  (Sahih al-Bukhari, Vol. 5, Book 59, #375)
The above narration is found in Sahih al-Bukhari, the most well-respected book of hadith(prophetic traditions).  When Islamophobes find a “useful” narration in this collection, they are quick to push the absolute authenticity of it.  When a narration like this one is found in the very same collection suddenly they doubt it! [Hat tip: Saifullah et al.]
For example, Christian polemicist Timothy W. Dunkin disregards this prophetic tradition as mere “redaction,” giving absolutely no proof for this claim except his own whim.  Thus does the conspiracy theorist construct and reinforce his far-fetched belief: whatever text supports the moon-god theory even in a convoluted and miserably indirect way is accepted, and whatever text clearly and categorically rejects the conspiracy theory (Quranic verses that forbid worship of the moon, hadiths that differentiate Hubal from Allah, etc.) is simply rejected.  Once all contrary evidence is taken out of the equation, then aha!, see all the evidence points to Allah being the moon-god!
It is interesting to note, however, that not even Yoel Natan, author of Moon-O-Theism (and the most ardent proponent of the moon-god theory), could accept the claim that Allah was the same as Hubal.  Natan admits that “Hubal was not a moon-god” (Vol. II, p.168) and that in fact “Hubal was Allah’s competitor” (Ibid., p.167), which is clear from the prophetic tradition we have cited above.
This is not to say that the pagans rejected Allah altogether.  However, they focused their worship on idols such as Hubal, neglecting to worship Allah except in times of severe distress–for which the Quran condemns them (see Quran 29:65).  Hubal had become the chief idol of the Kaaba, outstripping Allah in terms of day-to-day importance and cultic worship, even while Allah retained nominal supremacy as “Lord of the Kaaba.”  Scholars believe that Hubal was likely a Syrian or Mesopotamian god that was accepted into the Arabian pantheon of deities, much like the Israelite god Allah was accommodated by the pagan belief system as the creator god (more on this later).
The Prophet Muhammad was intent on aligning the early Muslims with the Israelite god Allah and away from the pagan god Hubal, exclaiming the superiority of Allah over Hubal.  This culminated in the eventual destruction of the Hubal idol by the Prophet Muhammad once he conquered Mecca.  How could Allah be the same as Hubal when the Prophet Muhammad declared Allah’s supremacy to Hubal, and even went on to destroy the idol Hubal?
The only “evidence” used to link Hubal to Allah is the fact that the Quran does not mention Hubal by name.  The argument goes: the Quran repudiates al-Lat, Manat, and al-Uzza but makes no mention of Hubal; therefore, Hubal is Allah.  This, as rightfully pointed out by M.S.M. Saifullah and Abdullah David, is an argumentum e silentio–using the absence of proof as a proof in and of itself:
…While the Qur’an railed against Allat, Manat, and al-ʿUzza, whom the pagan Arabs referred to as the “daughters of Allah”, it stopped short of attacking the cult of Hubal. Although such an argument can be applied to any of the pagan idols not mentioned in the Qur’an, such as Dhul-Khalasa and Dhul-Shara, the argumentum e silentio of Wellhausen became a rallying cry for the missionaries and apologists to claim that Hubal was none other than Allah.[24] This is clearly a logical fallacy.
The verse in the Quran that “railed against Allat, Manat, and al-‘Uzza” can be found in verses 53:19-23, which reads:
Have you considered al-Lat and al-Uzza–and the last of the three–Manat?  What!  Why for yourselves you would choose only male offspring, whereas to Him you assign females?  What a bizarre distribution!  These are nothing but names you have invented yourselves, you and your forefathers, for which God (Allah) has sent no authority for.  These people merely follow guesswork and their own whims, even though guidance has come to them from their Lord. (Quran, 53:19-23)
The Islamophobes argue that the Quran mentions al-Lat, al-Uzza, and Manat by name but not Hubal and that this somehow means that Hubal is Allah.  This is a very dubious claim, based only in the negative vacuum of proof.
It should be noted that the style of the Quran is very different than the Bible in that it does not generally name names–rather, general and generic references are made.  To this effect, it should be noted that Muhammad is only mentioned by name in the Quran a grand total of four times.  Only one of the many disciples of the Prophet Muhammad is mentioned by name.  The most revered disciple, Abu Bakr, is not mentioned by name a single time in the entire Quran; instead, his story is told using generic pronouns (the Arabic equivalent of he and him).  Therefore, it is not at all surprising that the name Hubal is not taken in the Quran.
Secondly, if we were to accept the dubious claim that Hubal was the moon-god, then in that case the Quran does mention him in verses 7:54, 13:2, and 21:33, in which worship of the moon is rejected.  After all, if we accept (as we must) the idea that the Quran in general refrains from naming names and focuses instead on concepts and stories, then in that case–if Hubal was indeed the moon-god–then he is referenced in those verses.  Here, the Islamophobic opponent is caught in a Catch-22: if Hubal was really the moon-god, then he is rejected in the Quran in those passages; if he was not the moon-god, then proving Allah was Hubal would actually prove that Allah was not the moon-god.
Thirdly, the Quran mentions al-Lat, al-Uzza, and Manat in a very specific context: the passage condemns the pagans for attributing daughters to Allah even while they themselves prefer sons for themselves.  Hubal was a male deity and therefore it would not make sense to mention him in a verse about daughters.  Saifullah et al. write:
…The Qur’an is referring to the concept of “daughters of Allah”, and to mention a male deity like Hubal would be against the very argument the Qur’an is drawing attention to.
What! for you the males and for Him the females! This indeed is an unjust division! [Sūrah al-Najm:21]
The Qur’an uses irony to drive home a point. While many of the Arabs buried their daughters alive, as well as holding the position that women were inferior to men in all aspects, they still fabricated daughters for Allah.
Fourthly, there were over three-hundred idols worshiped by the pagans of Arabia, Hubal being one of them.  The Quran doesn’t mention any of the rest of them; by the logic of argumentum e silentio could we argue that Allah was not Hubal or the moon-god but any or all of the many gods in the pantheon of deities?  This indicates the flawed logic behind argumentum e silentio.
Fifthly, some argue that Hubal originated from–and is the same as–the Semitic god Baal.  This is certainly something accepted by many anti-Muslim ideologues who wish to link the evil Baal to Allah through Hubal.  Yoel Natan, for example, endorses the idea that Hubal came from–and was–Baal.  If this was indeed the case, then the Quran does mention Hubal/Baal by name:
Will you invoke Baal and forsake the best of Creators, Allah, your Lord and the Lord of your forefathers? (Quran, 37:125-126)
In the process of trying to make this fantastic juxtaposition between Allah and the moon-god, the Islamophobes attribute any and all negative points to Islam that they possibly can, often unknowingly furthering multiple, contradictory claims.  The truth-seeker should doubt their sincerity, and refrain from taking them seriously.  Whichever way you slice it, it is very difficult to link Allah to the moon.
Robert Morey’s primary “proof” that Allah refers to the pagan moon-god is that “Allah” was known to the pre-Islamic Arabs.  Argues Morey on p.47 of The Islamic Invasion:
By this time it should not come as a surprise that the word “Allah” was not something invented by Muhammad or revealed for the first time in the Quran…
For those people who find it hard to believe that Allah was a pagan name for a peculiar pagan Arabian deity in pre-Islamic times, the following citations may be helpful:
Allah is found…in Arabic inscriptions prior to Islam (Encyclopedia Britannica).
The Arabs, before the time of Mohammed, accepted and worshipped, after a fashion, a supreme god called allah (Encyclopedia of Islam, ed. Houtsma).
Allah was known to the pre-Islamic Arabs: he was one of the Meccan deities (Encyclopedia of Islam, ed. Gibb).
He goes on to quote several more such quotes to buttress his argument.  He summarizes his three main arguments, and two of these involve the above point:
1. In Pre-Islamic times, “Allah” was used by pagan Arabs in reference to one of 360 gods worshipped at the Kabah.
2. This “Allah” may have been a high god or even the top deity among the gods but he was not viewed in the monotheistic sense as the only true deity.
Morey bellows on p.45:
A Serious Threat
We are aware that these kinds of questions and the historical research that they generate pose a serious threat to the religion of Islam…
We understand the agony of Muslims over this issue.  They are in a tight spot…
Robert Morey’s self-congratulatory chest-thumping is ill-founded: Muslims are not in “agony” over what Morey considers “a serious threat to the religion of Islam.”  In fact, Muslims have always known that the pre-Islamic Arabs worshiped Allah.  Muslim jurists, Quranic commentators, and Islamic scholars from time immemorial have discussed this in-depth.  Indeed, it is even a central part of Islamic theology, which is openly embraced.  It is stated explicitly in the Quran itself.  Morey’s belief that this would “pose a serious threat to the religion of Islam” is only a reflection of his ignorance of Islam, Islamic theology, and the Quran.
Theologically, Muslims don’t believe that Muhammad brought the Arabs something “new.”  The Quran itself repeatedly asserts this, saying that the Prophet Muhammad was “not told anything that the previous messengers were not told” (Quran, 41:43); in fact, the Quran commands Muhammad: “Say, ‘I am nothing new among God’s messengers’” (Quran, 46:9).  Instead, the Prophet Muhammad came to simply remind the Arabs and all of humankind what they had been earlier taught by God’s prophets but which they had forgotten, perverted, and discarded.  Indeed, the Quran is called “the Reminder” for this very reason:
We have sent down to you this Reminder to make clear to the people what was sent to them aforetime, that perhaps they may reflect. (Quran, 16:44)
The Quran teaches that Adam, the first human being and prophet of God, built the Kaaba in Mecca.  Eventually, Abraham and his first-born son Ishmael rebuilt the Kaaba on its original foundations.  Ishmael is said to have settled in the Arabian peninsula, and he thus became the forefather of the Arabs.  Muslims thus believe that the early Arabs were monotheists who worshiped the one true God, and who followed the same religious tradition as Abraham and his son Ishmael.  Later, however, the Arabs fell into a state of jahiliyyah (ignorance), and forgot, perverted, and discarded the religion of Abraham.  They associated other gods with God (Allah) and thus became polytheists.
Muslims have always believed that the pagan Arabs were “fallen monotheists.”  Having thus understood Islamic theology, it is no surprise at all that the pre-Islamic Arabs knew of (and worshiped) Allah.  The Quran didn’t condemn the pagan Arabs for rejecting Allah; rather, it condemned them for associating other gods in the worship of Him.  Robert Morey’s “discovery” is thus only 1,400 years old and inconsequential.
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Where Robert Morey and other anti-Muslim Evangelicals are completely mistaken, however, is their claim that Allah represented “one of the many idols in the Kabah.”  There is no proof at all for this.  As Prof. Jonathan P. Berkey notes on p.42 of The Formation of Islam, Allah “represented a remote creator god” who “apparently played little role in religious cult;” instead, the pre-Islamic pagans of Arabia worshiped lesser gods that took the form of various idols.  Professor Robert F. Shedinger writes on p.76 of Was Jesus a Muslim?:
Pre-Islamic Arab society was also polytheistic.  While there was a belief in a supreme creator deity called Allah (an Arabic phrase that simply means “the God”), most members of the society believed that Allah was a remote, detached deity who had little concern for human affairs.  So pre-Islamic Arabs worshiped a host of lesser deities, mostly in the form of idols carved from wood and stone.
Prof. Roger W. Stump writes on p.60 of The Geography of Religion (emphasis added):
Allah appears to have been identified within this context as a remote, creator god but was not the object of tribal worship.
The pagans of Arabia neglected the worship of Allah and directed their prayer to their more tangible idols.  In this regard, the Quran chastises them in verses 23:84-94 for focusing their worship on other gods even while they acknowledged Allah as the supreme creator God.  Similarly, in verse 29:65 the Quran chastises the pagans for calling on their idols on a day-to-day basis and only calling on Allah when in extreme distress.  “The object of tribal worship” thus became focused on the practical idols in the Kaaba as opposed to the nominal belief in Allah.  In other words, -doxy may have rested with Allah, but -praxy was directed towards the lesser gods.
It is true that the Kaaba was associated with Allah, but Allah was not an idol within the Kaaba.  When the early Muslims conquered Mecca, the Prophet Muhammad destroyed all the idols within the Kaaba.  There was no idol called Allah, evidenced by the fact that no discussion can be found about whether or not such an idol would be spared and the others destroyed.  Professor William E. Phipps writes on p.21 of Muhammad and Jesus (emphasis added):
The Ka’ba contained hundreds of sacred rocks and statues from many Arabian tribes, but no images of Allah. No special cult was associated with Allah.  In the pre-Islamic era, Allah was recognized as the creator of the world and as the giver of rain.  He was revered but was considered to be aloof, so popular piety was usually directed elsewhere.
Compare this to Robert Morey’s claim:
An Allah idol was set up at the Kabah along with all the other idols…Since the idol of their moon god, Allah, was at Mecca, they prayed toward Mecca. (p.52)
This, the basic premise of Morey’s moon-god theory, is nothing but fabrication.  Allah was notone of the idols in the Kaaba.  Yes, the pagans recognized Allah as the supreme creator god, but they believed him to be a remote god who retired from and was aloof from his creation.  The pre-Islamic pagans of Arabia therefore focused their cultic worship on lesser gods represented by over three-hundred idols in the Kaaba.  Muhammad “cleansed” the Kaaba by destroying all of these idols, rejecting all lesser deities, and calling the Arabs to the worship of Allah alone.

Allah God not Moon God - YouTube.flv - YouTube

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Allah - Moon God? Peace be with you, Do Muslims Worship The Moon God? Refutation To The Myth By ...

Allah is Moon God myth crushed again by just 1 verse from ...

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