Muhammad isn’t “altogether lovely” in Song of Solomon

The supposed name of Muhammad in Song of Solomon 5:16

Recently a Muslim apologist named Faiz tried to refute a blog post that I made about Muhammad in Song of Solomon 5:16.  He didn’t even try to refute my points in my post but tried to make Muhammad into a type of Solomon.  Here is his article:

Muhammad in the Song of Songs

I think this shows how desperate Muslims are to paint Muhammad into pre-Islamic texts.  It is obvious that Muhammad is not a parallel of Solomon.  In fact, this article by Faiz shows that Muhammad thought the Temple was still standing when he was alive.  Muhammad didn’t know that the Temple had been destroyed over a Millennium before his arrival.  This is from a Hadith and Faiz even quoted it to establish an alleged typology between Solomon and Muhammad.

Regardless, is the word that appears in Song of Solomon 5:16 actually the name of Muhammad?  For those unfamiliar with this argument, here is the verse:

His mouth is most sweet,
Yes, he is altogether lovely.
This is my beloved,
And this is my friend,
O daughters of Jerusalem!

The words altogether lovely in Hebrew is supposedly Muhammad’s name.  It is made up of four hebrew letters.  This is how it looks:

Hebrew is read from right to left.  There are four letters.  The first letter is Mem, the second is Heit, the third is Mem, and the fourth is Dalet.  This four letter word is supposed to be the name of Muhammad.  Muslims need to show us that this is how to spell Muhammad’s name.

I went on an investigation on how to properly spell Muhammad’s name in Hebrew.  I typed Muhammad into Wikipedia and went to the Arabic article.  I copied and pasted his name into Google Translate and came up with this:

Google Translate

Muhammad’s name in Google translate isn’t spelt Mem, Heit, Mem, Dalet.  His name is spelt Mem, Waw, Heit, Mem, Dalet.  In other words, it is spelt like this:

The proper way to spell Muhammad in Hebrew

I returned to Wikipedia and looked at the Hebrew article of Muhammad and it is spelt the same as it was in Google Translate.  It is spelt with the Waw.  Here it is:

The Hebrew Wikipedia article on Muhammad

At this point, I wanted to find a Hebrew translation of the Quran.  I wanted to see if religious Muslims who know the Hebrew language spell the name Muhammad with a Waw like everywhere else, or without the Waw like the word found in Song of Solomon.  I found the following website that contains several Quran translations into many languages including Hebrew.

There is not a full Hebrew translation but there is a partial translation which includes the first three chapters.  I’m assuming the scholar doing the translation will eventually complete this translation.

This Islamic scholar and translator is named Musa As’ad Odeh.  Here is the title page to his translation:

If Muhammad’s name is spelt without the Waw, then this translation should surely spell it without the Waw.  In Surah 3 Muhammad’s name is used.  Let’s see how it’s spelt:

Surah 3 in Hebrew and Arabic

When we look at the translation, we see that Muhammad’s name is spelt with a Waw.  It is not spelt the same way as the word in Song of Solomon.  Since no one who knows Hebrew seems to spell Muhammad without the Waw, we must conclude that the word in Song of Solomon is not Muhammad’s name.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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14 thoughts on “Muhammad isn’t “altogether lovely” in Song of Solomon

  1. You claimed that Hadith show the Prophet thought the Temple existed at his time. Which Hadith would this be?

    If the word used in the Hadith is Masjid as in Masjid Al-Aqsa (Surah 17:1 and later in the Surah the word Masjid is used speaking about the history of the place the Israelites worshipped in).Linguistically, the word Masjid is used for a place of prostration. Linguistically it comes from SJD as in Sujud (to prostrate). This word is used to indicate any place where Muslims can worship. There is a Hadith that declares the earth is a Masjid. Furthermore, in the early Muslim periods, open places were taken as mosques even without walls or roofs. The people would simply dilineate an area with stones instead of walls. I know of some one who has actually been to a remote tribe that worships in a mosque similar to this. Even in cities ,Muslims use partially constructed mosques buildings as functional mosques.

    I mention this to show that even if there was no structure it would still be a Masjid.

    But historically speaking, at the Prophet’s time the Persians had taken over Jerusalem and handed it over to Jews that had rebelled against the Byzantine empire. Historical sources show that for a while the Jews built some type of structure during this period. Eventually the local Christians rebelled against the Jewish rulers appointed by the Persians. Also, the Byzantines retook the city after defeating the Persians. At some point the structure was torn down and the site was converted to a garbage dump. When Umar came to the city, the area was cleansed by Muslims (including at least one Rabbi who had accepted Islam).

    • “I was brought al-Buraq who is an animal white and long, larger than a donkey but smaller than a mule, who would place his hoof a distance equal to the range of version. I mounted it and came to the Temple (Bait Maqdis in Jerusalem), then tethered it to the ring used by the prophets.”

      Hello Fawaz, here is the Hadith. According to the reference it is from Sahih Muslim 1:309 which is part of the six collections of reliable Hadith. Now, I must confess that I didn’t check the reference but I assume Faiz would have quoted this correctly. The Temple that Solomon built was destroyed in the 6th Century BC. The Second Temple was destroyed in 70 AD, which was 40 years after Jesus. This is exactly 500 years before Muhammad was born as he was born in 570 AD according to Muslim sources.

      • Daniel 9:17 uses the Hebrew “Meqdash” for the sanctuary when it was desolate.

        A destroyed Meqdash is still a Meqdash.

        Also even if these statements required a physical structure, the historical sources show that there was one at the time of the Prophet even if it was short-lived.

        • So are you saying that there was a structure on the Temple Mount during Muhammad’s Prophetic career? He made the night Journey in the Meccan period which would be from 610-622. Do you believe that there was a structure at this time on the Temple Mount or somewhere else in Jerusalem?

          I mean, if I were a Muslim I would simply answer this by saying the Hadith is probably inauthentic. I’ve heard Muslims scholars say that even among the six reliable collections, weak Hadiths are found.

          • Even if there was no structure it would still be Bayt ul Maqdis.

            But there actually was a structure according to historical sources. The Jews wanted to restore their former glory with the backing of the Persians(Khusrau seen as the new Cyrus) against the Romans(new Babylon) led by Heraclius ( seen as Armilius the anti-messiah) just like the Rabbis of old had predicted.

            But their victory was shortlived and their structure was torn down, their leaders (the council of wise men) were killed by the local Christians.

            I am not sure what your interpretation of these texts is. Do you think these texts require a Solomonesque palatial Temple with all its riches? This is not how the early Muslims thought. For them, a simple structure or a broken structure or no physical structure would constitute a place of worship.

          • The Hadith seems to imply there was a structure. One can assume that the Jews wanted this after they took Jerusalem with the Persians but are there any sources that speak of a structure?

            You said:

            “. Do you think these texts require a Solomonesque palatial Temple with all its riches? This is not how the early Muslims thought. For them, a simple structure or a broken structure or no physical structure would constitute a place of worship.”

            It was Faiz who claimed that Muhammad is a type of Solomon and he gave that Hadith to support his position. I never claimed this.

    • Interesting observation. I really enjoy reading this stuff but I would be interested to hear more of a discussion on the subject of the piece. I am not qualified or knowledgeable enough to contribute so I feel I might really learn something were this to remain on topic and not get sidetracked.

    • I honestly don’t think you’ve refuted anything but the link to your article is here for everyone to check out at their leisure. All you’ve shown is that the Quran contradicts the Hadith. I don’t see how that helps you. Anyways, I’ve jumped beyond that whole debate and shown that the word in Song of Solomon is not even Muhammad’s name so therefore he isn’t even shown to be a type. All of your alleged parallels(which I essentially refuted) are worthless, unless you can prove Muhammad is spelt the same way that it is spelt in Song of Solomon.

      • Allan,

        Your defensive posturing shows your inability to respond to the points I have raised. The very fact that you will not explain why you are so high on the context and linguistics of song of songs, while ignoring these things when dealing with alleged prophecies about Jesus is precisely my point. Therein lies your double standards.

        You have refuted nothing about the parallels and all you have done is repeat the same argument that I have refuted. Even Fawaz has called you out on this but it seems you just do not want to admit that you are mistaken. That is disappointing.

        • The link is up. People can go to your article where you “refute” me and see how you do. I’m not afraid of anything.

        • Allan’s point about identifying Mohammed in the Song of Solomon is a powerful and important one and it must be answered in order to address the topic. I don’t think that you have come close to doing that, rather there is a lot of talking around the subject which leads to some obfuscation.

          Admittedly there aren’t many people that have the knack of being able to render ideas so succinctly as Mr Ruhl, and his ability to get to the nub of things with few words is to be admired, but even making allowances for that I don’t think that his position has been challenged.

          Perhaps that isn’t suprising when one considers what sort of belief systems are involved. I think an important factor is that the arguments in favour of the religion of the Jews and the Christians is one that cannot be matched by the one that Mohammed invented. I began studying the Koran years ago thinking that perhaps (given that Man is a creature with the urge to worship) it might have some semblance of Divine inspiration or provide some profound insight such as even the Buddhists and Hindus provide but I found none. Nor have the apologists of Islam been in any way convincing.

          I don’t wish to discourage dialogue but I have yet to see any evidence that Islam is a true faith let alone an Abrahamic one.