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Then We made the sperm-drop into a clinging clot, and We made the clot into a lump [of flesh], and We made the lump, bones, and We covered the bones with flesh; then We developed him into another creation. So blessed is Allah, the best of creators.
Qur'an 23:14

In this verse Allah says "... and We made the lump, bones ...". But the lump doesn't totally convert to bones, only a part of it does. So isn't this wrong?

Again some might answer this by giving this translation, "... and We made (from) the lump, bones ..."

But the Arabic word 'من' is absent here. That means that Allah didn't say that, rather it was put there by the translator.

How do you explain this matter?

I might be wrong so please forgive me, I'm a human after all.

  • Salam and welcome to Islam SE the Q&A site about Islam. To learn more about this site and our model I strongly recommend you to take the tour and check our help center. What do you mean with "من" is absent and why should that indicate that Allah didn't say that. – Medi1Saif Apr 6 '18 at 20:50
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I have not come across any Islamic scholarly view that considers this verse, or any other verse in the Qur'an or a hadith for that matter, as a "scientific" miracle. If you have such an Islamic scholarly view, please share it by editing your question. What you will find that scholars of exegesis (Qur'an and hadith) did was to use scientific evidence of their time to explain Islamic text, not to use Islamic text to prove or establish scientific findings.

Most of the discussions of the so-called scientific miracles emerged in recent times, in the 20th century to be specific. None that I have come across are from what one can call Muslim scholars; rather, from preachers (for lack of a better term) of Islam who scientific background, e.g., Zaghloul an-Naggār or Mohammed Rateb an-Nabulsi (I am aware that the English pages say they are Muslim scholars, but this is not the word used to describe either in the Arabic pages, nor is it justified by their line of study). When it comes to scholars fo Islam, even in the 20th century, Muhammad ibn al Uthaymeen said in his book Al-'Ilm (which may be translated to "The Science"):

فالإعجاز العلمي في الحقيقة لا ننكره، لا ننكر أن في القران أشياء ظهر بيانها في الأزمنة المتأخرة لكن غالى بعض الناس في الإعجاز العلمي حتى رأينا من جعل القرآن كأنه كتاب رياضة وهذا خطأ

NOTE: My own translation, so treat with care.

As the scientific miracles [of the Qur'an] is something that we do not really deny; we do not deny that in the Qur'an there are verses that could only be explained by discoveries in later times. Some people have taken this [concept of] scientific miracles far too much, to the extent that some want to turn the Qur'an into a book of mathematics, and this is wrong.

Al-'Ilm, pp. 105

Note that the verses specific to your question do not discuss the stages of the formation of an embryo; rather, the concept of the creation of an embryo. The word used in the Arabic language is khalaqna (Arabic: خلقنا), which means "We created":

ثُمَّ خَلَقْنَا النُّطْفَةَ عَلَقَةً فَخَلَقْنَا الْعَلَقَةَ مُضْغَةً فَخَلَقْنَا الْمُضْغَةَ عِظَامًا فَكَسَوْنَا الْعِظَامَ لَحْمًا ثُمَّ أَنشَأْنَاهُ خَلْقًا آخَرَ فَتَبَارَكَ اللَّهُ أَحْسَنُ الْخَالِقِينَ

Then We made the sperm-drop into a clinging clot, and We made the clot into a lump [of flesh], and We made [from] the lump, bones, and We covered the bones with flesh; then We developed him into another creation. So blessed is Allah, the best of creators.

Surat Al-Mu'minun 23:14

Science may well observe all the different stages of formation, but does not observe the creation. In fact, Allah informs us in the Qur'an of the fact that the detailed knowledge of the creation process was no shared with us:

مَّا أَشْهَدتُّهُمْ خَلْقَ السَّمَاوَاتِ وَالْأَرْضِ وَلَا خَلْقَ أَنفُسِهِمْ وَمَا كُنتُ مُتَّخِذَ الْمُضِلِّينَ عَضُدًا

I did not make them witness to the creation of the heavens and the earth or to the creation of themselves, and I would not have taken the misguiders as assistants.

Surat Al-Kahf 18:51

You will not find scientists, Muslims or non-Muslims that can confidently explain the process of how a soul is created since no one can observe the creation or the destruction of a soul, albeit that the signs associated with the soul (or life within a body) may be observed. Indeed, observing the signs of creation is something that Allah ordered us to observe and think about as a sign of His Divinity:

أَوَلَمْ يَرَوْا كَيْفَ يُبْدِئُ اللَّهُ الْخَلْقَ ثُمَّ يُعِيدُهُ إِنَّ ذَٰلِكَ عَلَى اللَّهِ يَسِيرٌ

Have they not considered how Allah begins creation and then repeats it? Indeed that, for Allah, is easy.

Surat Al-'Ankabut 29:19

Finally, as a validation, I searched about this topic of embryo formation in traditional books that discuss the miracles of the Qur'an:

I understand that such books are not conclusive to prove that no other Muslim scholars consider the verse in question to be a miracle and that at the risk of committing a reductio-ad-absurdum fallacy, it may be more meaningful if you can produce your evidence by Muslim scholars of the "scientific miracle" in this verse.

Examples of books that discuss the miracles of the Qur'an that discussed the topic are:

  • In Al-Qur'an wa I'jāzuh al-'Ilmi (an apologetic book published in 2010) by Mohammad Isma'il Ibrahim (I have been unable to find who the author is), he discussed this verse in pp. 102-8, then cursory mention in pp. 48, and pp. 168. He compared, as is the case for the entire book, the "Islamic view" as presented by Muslim scholars versus the "Scientific view" as evidenced by modern science. When talking about this verse in pp. 102, he said that the Islamic scholarly view is that the origin of the creation of humanity is dust (referring to Adam), then his descendants are created from sperm that fertilizes an egg in the womb of a woman, where it develops until the soul is breathed into it. This shows that the greatness of Allah's creation and His ability to start a creation in one form that ends in another. He then presents that modern science has proved that the stages of formation of an embryo are as presented in the Qur'an.
  • In Mawsū'at al-I'jāz al-'Ilmī fi al-Qur'an wa as-Sunnah by Mohammed Rateb an-Nabulsi, he discussed this verse in pp. 86-87, then cursory mention in pp. 95, and pp. 166. He, too, had a similar Islamic interpretation to that presented by Mohammad Isma'il Ibrahim then discussed how embryology proves the accuracy of the description of the Qur'an. He did not, however, say the list in the Qur'an is comprehensive; rather, he compared the description in the Qur'an to the modern images at each stage.
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It may be viewed as a scientific miracle in that it accurately mentions a phenomenon that occurs in embryology, i.e., the formation of bones from the lump (at a time when people didn't know or were confused on these things).

It may not be deemed a scientific failure in that saying "X gives rise to Y" does not negate that X may give rise to other things. Notice it was you who introduced the words "totally" v. "partially". You said Allah (ﷻ) didn't say "from" but forget that He didn't say "totally" either. -- All in all, there is nothing scientifically inaccurate about the verse.

(Note: The above is assuming that your premise that "only a part of it does" is correct to begin with. It's wise to have some skepticism about any "scientific understanding" of the scientific community as its views have time and time again been wrong (but previously seen as true) - It's possible it gives rise to various things but Allah only mentioned the most important piece relevant in the context of embryology OR it's even possible the current scientific understanding is wrong).

Another example, Allah (ﷻ) said He created living things from water. If someone were to come and say "living things are also made up of other trace elements!" this would not mean the claim that humans are made from water is wrong. Hope this analogy helps.

  • <comments deleted> Comments are intended for constructive criticism and seeking clarification, not for argument and debate or extended discussion of tangential points. – goldPseudo Apr 6 '18 at 21:27
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As-salam-alaikum , Bismillah , Allah is Al-Aleem and I am not , Allah knows best

Quarnic verse says :-

Surah Al-Mu’minun (المؤمنون), verses: 14

ثُمَّ خَلَقْنَا ٱلنُّطْفَةَ عَلَقَةً فَخَلَقْنَا ٱلْعَلَقَةَ مُضْغَةً فَخَلَقْنَا<

ٱلْمُضْغَةَ عِظَٰمًا فَكَسَوْنَا ٱلْعِظَٰمَ لَحْمًا ثُمَّ أَنشَأْنَٰهُ خَلْقًا ءَاخَرَ فَتَبَارَكَ ٱللَّهُ أَحْسَنُ ٱلْخَٰلِقِينَ

Then We made the Nutfah into a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood), then We made the clot into a little lump of flesh, then We made out of that little lump of flesh bones then We clothed the bones with flesh, and then We brought it forth as another creation. So blessed be Allah, the Best of creators.

or सूरा अल-मोमिनून (المؤمنون), वर्सेज: १४

ثُمَّ خَلَقْنَا ٱلنُّطْفَةَ عَلَقَةً فَخَلَقْنَا ٱلْعَلَقَةَ مُضْغَةً فَخَلَقْنَا< ٱلْمُضْغَةَ عِظَٰمًا فَكَسَوْنَا ٱلْعِظَٰمَ لَحْمًا ثُمَّ أَنشَأْنَٰهُ خَلْقًا ءَاخَرَ فَتَبَارَكَ ٱللَّهُ أَحْسَنُ ٱلْخَٰلِقِينَ

"

"फिर हमने उस बूँद को लोथड़े का रूप दिया; फिर हमने उस लोथड़े को बोटी का रूप दिया; फिर हमने उन हड्डियों पर मांस चढाया; फिर हमने उसे एक दूसरा ही सर्जन रूप देकर खड़ा किया। अतः बहुत ही बरकतवाला है अल्लाह, सबसे उत्तम स्रष्टा!

Look at the line

We made out of that little lump of flesh bones

And from science we know that Bones are formed due to ossification of muscles

As sciencist agree *Most of the structural and skeleton support muscle are formed due to ossification *

But first clear meaning of Lump :- a compact mass of a substance, especially one without a definite or regular shape. And Flesh:-the soft substance consisting of muscle and fat that is found between the skin and bones of a human or an animal.

The Arabic word used for them do not refer to connective tissue , if you are talking about liver,heart and many organ do not get ossified than Quran does not say all lump of flesh is ossified And when you study embryology you will find out there is not a single bone in our human body which is not formed due to ossification so that mean

Every bone is developed from flesh **But every Lump of Flesh do not form bone and Quran does not say that **

I hope I covered your point I am medical student I tried my best thanks.

Amen.

  • The entire lump is created to bones, that's what the Quran says. Check the Arabic of that part of the ayat. Word by word. You will then understand. – Abu Safwan Md farhan Apr 5 '18 at 18:51
  • I don't understand hindi. I am not an Indian. – Abu Safwan Md farhan Apr 5 '18 at 18:57
  • I do not know Arabic but every translation mention the same line in same way – Abdullah Apr 5 '18 at 23:14
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I strongly recommend people who believe that this verse in the Quran is a scientific error, to watch the following video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zbD8DQjZH6s

I would also like to add the fact that Muslims shouldn't be confused by any non muslims commentary about any verse in the Quran that they want to prove unscientific because of the fact that they Don't know Arabic. That's the only reason they get the verses wrong.

They don't have sound knowledge in arabic morphology,semantics and pragmatics.

Be aware of judging things that you people don't have proper knowledge about. And don't misguide people from the true path.

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