The Jewish Roots Of Sunni “Islam”

Praise be to Allah (swt), for Allah (swt) forgives all sins: for He is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.

As-salāmu `alaykum, there’s an ongoing sectarian slur on the part of Bakris (so called “Sunni Muslims”) against Shia Muslims that the Shia thought emerged from the teachings of a Jew named Abdullah ibn Saba’. Such accusation is meant to defame (Shia) Islam as “non-Islamic”. Despite the fact that Saba is a fictional character that never existed, as proved by multiple historians both Western and Muslim, including “Sunni” ones; Taha Hussein, Ali al-Wardi, Bernard Lewis, Wilferd Madelung, Askari. Muhammad ibn Jarir al-Tabari’s account of Ibn Saba is a sheer fiction. “Sunni” historians Taha Hussein and Ali al-Wardi maintain that Ibn Saba’ was the creation of Umayyad propaganda. Putting fictional character of Ibn Saba aside, let’s analyze the very real Jewish roots of the so called “Sunni Islam”.

Ka’ab al-Ahbar; a Jewish rabbi advisor to Umar, Uthman and Muawiyah

Ka’ab al-Ahbar (full name Abū Iṣḥaq Ka‘b ibn Mati‘ al-Humyari al-Aḥbār) was a prominent rabbi from Yemen who was one of the earliest Jewish converts to Islam (although his conversion is disputed by Shia Muslims). According to the “Sunni” traditions, he is counted among the Tabi’in and narrated many Isra’iliyat. He was an influential figure in the reigns of the usurpers Umar, Uthman and Muawiyah.

According to “Sunni” tradition, Ka‘ab believed that “Every event that has taken place or will take place on any foot of the earth, is written in the Tourat (Torah), which God revealed to his Prophet Moses”. (Yusuf ibn Abd-al-Barr – al-Istiab, v3, p1287 Printed in Cairo 1380 A.H) He is said to have predicted the death of Umar using the Torah. According to one narration, Ka‘ab told Umar “you ought to write your will because you will die in three days.” Umar responded “I do not feel any pain or sickness”. Abu Lulu (RA) assassinated Umar two days later. (Tarikh al-Tabari v4, p191 Printed by Dar al-Maarif – Cairo)

After Umar’s death Ka‘ab went to Syria and became one of Mu‘awiyah’s advisers. He died in Hims during the Caliphate of Uthman. Abd Allah ibn Abbas disputed a view by Ka’ab that “on the day of the judgement the sun and the moon will be brought forth like two stupefied bulls and thrown to hell”. According to Al-Tabari, Ibn Abbas responded “Kaab is a liar!” three times, quoting the Quran that the sun and moon are obedient to Allah. He accused Ka’ab of trying to introduce Jewish myths into Islam. (Tabari – History of al-Tabari, v1, p62 – 63)

Muhammad al-Tijani, a 20th-century Muslim scholar and an ex-“Sunni”, writes that “He (al-Ahbar) was a Jew from Yemen who pretended to have embraced Islam then went to Medina during the reign of Umar ibn al-Khattab.”

Rabbi Shallum, alias Abu Bakr; a first “Sunni” “Caliph” who saved and preserved the Judaism

The notion that certain companions of the Islamic Prophet were practicising Jews who remained so even after supposedly accepting Islam, is widespread in the Jewish and non-Jewish literature. A prominent Jewish rabbi, historian and traveler Joseph Schwarz wrote in his work entitled “History of Palestine: 614 – 1096 C.E. From the Accession of the Mahomedans to that of the Europeans.“:

“(…) Mahomed had an astrologer at his court called Bucheran, who was a very great enemy of the Jews, and urged the prophet constantly to persecute and exterminate them entirely, so that Mahomed at length listened to the proposition, since he had without this already a hatred towards them, because they had not aided him in his campaigns according to his expectation; wherefore the whole Jewish population under his rule, ran great danger of being entirely cut off. Rabbi Shallum, son of the then Resh Gelutha, in Babel, perceiving this dreadful predicament, went to Mahomed, and offering him his submission, friendship, and services, endeavoured to enter with him into a friendly compact. Mahomed accepted his proposition with pleasure, conceived a great affection for him, and took his daughter, a handsome young girl, for wife; he made him also a general in his army, and gave him the name of Abu Bachr al Chaliva al Zadik, literally: The father of the maiden, the descendant of the righteous; this means, that of all his wives, who were either widows or divorced women, this one was the only one who had never been married before, and then she was the granddaughter of the celebrated chief of the captivity; therefore, the descendant of the righteous. This occurrence induced Mahomed to give up his terrible intention to destroy the Jews in his country, and thus did Rabbi Shallum save his people. (…)

Umar ibn al-Khat’tab; a second “Sunni” “Caliph” that tried to preach Judaism to the Muslims

Umar bin al-Khat’tab, 2nd “Sunni” Caliph, was a well known person to be heavily under the Jewish influence and the teachings of Torah. According to the “Sunni” hadith: Abu Bakr al-Asfahani informed us> al-Hafiz Abu’l-Shaykh [al-Asfahani] > Abu Yahya al-Razi> Sahl ibn ‘Uthman> ‘Ali ibn Mushir> Dawud> al-Sha’bi who said: “Said ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab, may Allah be well pleased with him: ‘I used to go to the Jews upon their study of the Torah and was amazed to see the conformity of the Qur’an with the Torah and of the Torah with the Qur’an. On one occasion they said: ‘O ‘Umar! We do not like anyone more than we like you’. I asked: ‘And why is that?’ They said: ‘Because you come to us and mix with us’. I said: ‘I come to you only because of my amazement at how the different parts of the Book of Allah strengthen each other, and how the Qur’an is in conformity with the Torah and how the Torah is in conformity with the Qur’an’.

In Bukhari, Volume 6, Book 60, Number 12, we read:

Narrated Abu Huraira:

The people of the Scripture (Jews) used to recite the Torah in Hebrew and they used to explain it in Arabic to the Muslims. On that Allah’s Apostle said, “Do not believe the people of the Scripture or disbelieve them, but say:– “We believe in Allah and what is revealed to us.” (2.136)

Narrated by Al-Bazzaar on the authority of Jaabir: He said, “‘Umar copied part of the Torah in Arabic, brought it to the Prophet , and began to read it to him. As he read, the Prophet’s face changed color. One of the men of the Ansaar said, “Woe to you Ibn Al-Khattab! Can you not see the face of the Messenger of Allah?’ Thereupon, the Prophet , said, ‘Do not ask the People of the Book about anything for they will not guide you when they have gone astray. (If you listen to them) You will either disbelieve in what is right or believe in what is false. By Allah, if Moses had been alive today, he would have been obliged to follow me.’

Another version of this “Sunni” hadith goes as following:

Imams Ahmad and Ad-Darimi narrated that Umar Ibn al-Khattab brought to Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) a copy of the Torah and said: Allah’s Messenger, this is a copy of the Torah. He (Allah’s Messenger) kept quiet and he (Umar) began to read it. The (colour) of the face of Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) underwent a change, whereupon ABu Bakr said: Would that your mother mourn you, don’t you see the face of Allah’s Messenger? Umar saw the face of Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) and said: I seek refuge with Allah from the wrath of Allah and the wrath of His Messenger. We are well pleased with Allah as Lord, with Islam as religion, and with Muhammad as Prophet. Whereupon Allah’s Messenger (peace be upon him) said: By Him in Whose hand is the life of Muhammad, even if Moses were to appear before you and you were to follow him, leaving me aside, you would certainly stray into error; for if (Moses) were alive (now), and he found my prophetical ministry, he would have definitely followed me”.

Uthman; a third “Sunni” “Caliph” that continued the influence of a Jewish rabbi

The influence of Kaab continued to grow after the death of Umar. During the reign of the Third Caliph, Kaab was able to give verdicts in Islamic affairs. The Caliph “often “agreed with him, and no one among the attendants of the Caliph’s meetings would oppose him, except for people like Abu Dharr who became so furious one time upon hearing Kaab’s verdicts in Islam that he hit him with his rod saying “Son of a Jewish lady, are you trying to teach us our religion ?

To secure for himself a bigger influence and a better future after the death of the Uthman, Kaab tried to please Muawiyah by predicting his future arrival at the helm of the Islamic Rule. Caliph Uthman was returning from his pilgrimage accompanied by Muawiyah and the caravan driver sang a song in which he predicted that ‘Ali would be successor of Uthman. Kaab belied the singer saying:

By God, you “lie “. The ruler after Uthman will be the rider of the blond mule.

Here Kaab was refering to Muawiyah, and he falsely attributed this information to the Old Testament! Muawiyah had also ordered Kaab to narrate to the people of Damascus anything that puts Damascus and its people above other provinces. It is worth to mention that Syria was previously given to the Banu Umayya, a tribe fiercly opposed to the revelation of Islam and the Prophet’s family, as a fief by nobody other than the second Sunni “rightly guided” Caliph Umar. (Sunni references: Ibn al-Atheer – Kamil, v3, p76 Known as ‘Ali Ibn al-Sahibani – Second Print (Mule reference). al-Tabari – History, v4, p343, printed by Dar al-Maarif – Cairo (Mule reference), Ibn Hajar Asqalani (Sunni Hadith Scientist), al-Isabah , v5, p323 (Muawiyah ordering Kaab reference)).

Other Sunni ahadith

Sunni hadith collections are full of references to Judaism and the Jewish teachings that had a profonoud influence on the Sunni cult. Among some:

Narrated ‘Abdullah bin ‘Amr al-Aas:

The Prophet said, “Convey (my teachings) to the people even if it were a single sentence, and tell others the stories of Bani Israel (which have been taught to you), for it is not sinful to do so. And whoever tells a lie on me intentionally, will surely take his place in the (Hell) Fire.”

(Note that the parts in the brackets/parentheses were added by the hadith narrator/copier to give a ‘clear meaning’ to the text. One can clearly see that by removing the explanations the hadith has a completly different meaning; The Prophet said, “Convey to the people even if it were a single sentence, and tell others the stories of Bani Israel, for it is not sinful to do so. And whoever tells a lie on me intentionally, will surely take his place in the Fire.”Taking into account that this hadith is even authentic, Prophet clearly allowed the Sunni cult members to learn from the Jews while warning the Sunnis not to attribute lies to him.)

It is worthy to note that Abdullah was one of a Sunni ahadith students of… Kaab. It is also reported that Abdullah Ibn Amr al-Aas acquired two camels loaded with books of ‘people of the scriptures’ and used to give information to Muslims from these books.

The Jewish Encyclopedia on Ka’ab al-Ahbar

One of the most prominent fathers of (Sunni) Moslem tradition, and one of those who introduced into this branch of Arab literature the method as well as many details of the Jewish Haggadah; died 32 or 35 a.h. (652 or 655 C.E.). Of his earlier life nothing is known except that he was a Jew, a native of Yemen. His complete name was Abu Isḥaḳ Ka’b b. Mati’ b. Haisu (Hosea ?). A genealogy attributing to him a purely Arabic descent also exists; it was probably invented after he had embraced Islam. This he did during the califate of Abu Bakr (according to others, of Omar), whom he joined at Medina. On account of his theological learning he was styled “Al-Ḥibr” or “Al-Aḥbar,” which is an adaptation of the Hebrew “ḥaber.” He lectured on the Koran and the career of Mohammed, not from the merely exegetical and biographical points of view, but in a homiletic and haggadic manner, just as Abdallah b. Salam had done. Both these men laid the foundation for the legends which glorify Mohammed’s youth and prophetic call.

The most prominent of Ka’b’s disciples were Ibn ‘Abbas and Abu Hurairah, prolific traditionists, who developed the art of apotheosizing the prophet’s life to its utmost extent, and are therefore not very reliable authorities. Ka’b was a great favorite of the calif Omar, who frequently consulted him, chiefly on religious matters. As a politician Ka’b was a partizan of Othman, and was once even flogged by Abu Darr, who disapproved of the calif’s administration. There are many sayings attributed to Ka’b, among them being the statement that “the world will last six thousand years” (comp. Sanh. 97). Several other sayings refer to the superiority of Egypt over other countries. Ka’b retired toward the end of his life to Emesa. He left a son named Tubai.


Bukhari: Volume 4, Book 56, Number 662 :

Narrated by Abu Said

The Prophet said, “You will follow the wrong ways, of your predecessors so completely and literally that if they should go into the hole of a mastigure, you too will go there.” We said, “O Allah’s Apostle! Do you mean the Jews and the Christians?” He replied, “Whom else?” (Meaning, of course, the Jews and the Christians.)

Bukhari: Volume 9, Book 88, Number 173:

Narrated ‘Abdullah:

The Prophet said:

“I am your predecessor at the Lake-Fount (Kauthar) and some men amongst you will be brought to me, and when I will try to hand them some water, they will be pulled away from me by force whereupon I will say, ‘O Lord, my companions!’

Then the Almighty will say:

‘You do not know what they did after you left, they introduced new things into the religion after you.'”


And do not mix the truth with falsehood or conceal the truth while you know [it]. [2:42]


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