Belief in the Revealed Books of God
Muslims believe that God sent human prophets in order to proclaim His teachings throughout time and to every people. Some of these prophets had the additional responsibility of being messengers (rusul in Arabic), delivering the actual words of Allah to the people. Although these books were revealed in different places and at different times, they all originated from the same divine source.
Muslims believe in the revelation of five divine books:
Suhuf (Scrolls), revealed to Abraham
Zabur (Psalms), revealed to David
Tawrah (Torah), revealed to Moses
Injeel (Gospels), revealed to Jesus
Qur'an, revealed to Muhammad
Muslims believe these original messages had many teachings in common with Islam at the time they were revealed, although some specific guidance was directed to the communities that received the revelation. Over time, however, the original teachings of these books became distorted or lost, and it was necessary for God to send another message to set the record straight and confirm His teachings. Muslims believe the Qur'an was the final revelation God sent to mankind.
How is one “saved” in Islam?
“Whoever works righteousness, man or woman, and has faith, truly will Allah give a life that is good and pure, and will bestow on such their reward [in the hereafter] according to the best of their actions” (Qur'an 16:97). In Islam, faith and good works go hand in hand.
The Qur'an describes the series of revelations as follows: “We sent Jesus, the son of Mary, confirming the Torah that had come before him. We sent him the Gospel; therein was guidance and light, and confirmation of the Torah that had come before him — a guidance and an admonition to those who fear God…. To thee (Muhammad) We sent the scripture in truth, confirming the scripture that came before it, and guarding it in safety…. To each among you have We prescribed a Law and a Way. If God had so willed, He would have made you a single community, but His plan is to test you in what He has given you. So strive as in a race in all virtues. The goal of you all is to God; it is He Who will show you the truth in the matters in which you dispute” (Qur'an 5:46–48).
Muslims believe the Qur'an is the exact, authentic, and unchangeable word of God as revealed to the Prophet Muhammad, and it has been protected by God from any change or corruption. It therefore supersedes previous revelations and is the only revealed text that Muslims turn to for guidance today. The Qur'an will be described in more detail in Chapter 7.
Islam's position on the Bible is that the book in circulation today does not accurately reflect the teachings of Jesus or the beliefs of his early followers. While some passages may seem to correspond with Islamic teaching, Muslims find most of the book — and certainly the modern translations and interpretations — to be distorted.