The word Allah _ linguistic and historical perspectives
People of different nationalities, languages and religions, even those who do not follow the teachings of their religions—Muslims, Christians and Jews— mention the name "Allah" on daily basis. Even the polytheists in pre-Islam time used to ask this question: "Who did create the heavens and earth?" They replied: "Allah".
Mentioning the name "Allah" repeatedly by different people of differnt faiths is actually a miraculous fact.
Here below is the word "Allah" from the linguistic and historical perspectives:
"Allah" is an Arabic name refers to the One god Who created everything. Arabs used this name before the advent of Islam referring to the deities they used to worship. They used to associate partners with these deities claiming that they draw them nearer to it—i.e. Allah in their perspective. This was proved in the names they used before Islam such as "Abdullah" the father of Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him).
The name "Allah" in Judaism:
· The Jews use different equivalents for the name "Allah":
- The Hebrew name "אל pronounced as "Aiel" meaning "god". This Hebrew name is collocated with other names just as the word Allah in Arabic. The Jews say: "ארי- אל" pronounced as "Ar'iel" meaning "the lion of god". The Jews also say: " גבר-אל " pronounced as "Gabriel" meaning "man of god".
- The Hebrew name "יהוה" pronounced as "Yahweh" it is the name of god for the Jews in the time of Musa (peace be upon him). The Jews do not pronounce the name Yahweh; rather, they pronounce it as "Adonai" meaning "master". The Jews use these names to conceal the true name of god as a means of reverence and respect. They have often used the word השם" meaning "the name" to implicitly refer to god.
- The Hebrew name "אלוהים" pronounced as "Elohim" which is the plural noun of the Hebrew name " אלוה" pronounced as "Elawah" meaning "god". However, scholars maintain that this name contradicts the Oneness of Allah since it is used in its plural form. Some justify this pluralism on the basics that the people of Israel could not get rid of the multiple deities they used to worship before the advent of Musa (peace be upon him).
· The word "Allah" in Christianity:
In the bible, Christians use the Aramaic word "ܐܠ" that equals the Hebrew word " אל " meaning god. However, the Christians have different perspective about Allah from the Jews.
In our next articles under this section, we will tackle the other nations' perception about Allah Almighty from doctrinal perspectives.