بسم الله الحمد لله و صلاة و سلام على رسوم الله
Surah Aali Imran, Verse 145
Ahmadi Translation: And Muhammad is only a Messenger. Verily, all Messengers have passed away before him. If then he die or be slain, will you turn back on your heels? And he who turns back on his heels shall not harm Allah at all. And Allah will certainly reward the grateful.
Wama muhammadun illa rasoolun qad khalat min qablihi alrrusulu afa-in mata aw qutila inqalabtum AAala aAAqabikum waman yanqalib AAala AAaqibayhi falan yadurra Allaha shay-an wasayajzee Allahu alshshakireena
Ahmadis use this verse in combination with Surah Ma’idah Verse 75 to argue that ‘Esa bin Maryam عليه السلام died. Ironically, this verse same verse is used by the Muslims to argue that he did not die. Which is correct? Lets analyze:
First, notice the word Khalat (خَلَتْ). This word is translated as passed away, which is correct. However, Ahmadis argue that the implication is that this word means passed away in the sense of death. They understand this to mean that the prophets before Muhammad صلى الله عليه have [all] died. Therefore, they argue ‘Esa bin Maryam عليه السلام, one of the prophets before Muhammad صلى الله عليه, has died. This is correct? More specifically, does the word Khalat (خَلَتْ) mean death? Lets look at other verses to determine its meaning.
In Surah Aali Imran verse 138 Allah says:
Qad khalat min qablikum sunanun faseeroo fee alardi faonthuroo kayfa kana AAaqibatu almukaththibeena
Ahmadi translation: Surely, there have been many dispensations before you; so travel through the earth and see how evil was the end of those who treated the Prophets as liars.
In this verse the same word, Khalat, is used. However, what is the object that is being “passed away”? It is Sunan (the Plural of Sunnah), which is translated as dispensations, but I personally feel a better translation is paths or traits. Now, I ask Ahmadis, is it possible that a trait, dispensation or path can die? These are not living things or even physical objects, that are alive and die. But, the same word is applied to them. This argues that Khalat means pass away in the sense of go away, not die. Lets look at one more verse.
In Surah al-Baqarah verse 15 Allah says:
Waitha laqoo allatheena amanoo qaloo amanna waitha khalaw ilashayateenihim qaloo inna maAAakum innama nahnu mustahzioona
Ahmadi translation: And when they meet those who believe, they say: ‘We believe;’ but when they are alone with their ringleaders, they say: ‘We are certainly with you; we are only mocking.’
In this verse we see the word khalaw, the plural of khalat. This verse says: wa idha khalaw ila al-shayateen meaning and when [they] go to their devils. (This Ahmadi translation conveys the gist of the meaning of the verse, but not the actual word for word translation.) Again in this verse Allah uses the word Khalat to mean go away, not death.
One can see based on these examples that Khalat does not mean “pass away” in the sense of “death”, it means “pass away” in the sense of “depart”.
Based on this, one must rightly ask, does it mean [all] the Prophets before Muhammad صلى الله عليه و سلم died? The reality is, this verse has nothing to do with the death of the prophets. Allah is very very precise with the words he used in the Qur’an. If this verse meant that the prophets before Muhammad صلى الله عليه و سلم died, Allah would have used the word yamutūna (they die) But, Allah did not use this word.
There are other problems with this translation, specifically the inclusion of the word All (كل), as in All Messengers before him have passed away, when the word All does not exist in the Arabic text of the verse.
Now, this does not completely destroy the entire Ahmadi concept about the death of ‘Esa bin Maryam (in India at the age of 120 after his alleged adventure through Iran and Afghanistan based on Eastern Folklore and…The Bible). After all, they have about a dozen other arguments in support of this belief. But, it does cast doubt into their beliefs. How could this supposed prophet of Allah bring an incorrect argument? Did Allah incorrectly inspire him? Or is it the more rational answer: he was faking prophethood.
Muhammad ibn ‘Abdullah صلى الله عليه و سلم is the last and final prophet.
May Allah guide our Ahmadi friends to Islam.