Ph.D. Nurullah ABALI
Translation: Janet GASCOIGNE
One of the claims of Atheists against the Quran is that of the conversations of the angels with Mary. In Surah Maryam it is claimed that Mary had spoken to one Angel (Gabrial), in the Surah Al-i Imran she had spoken to many angels and therefore therefore it is claimed that there is a contradiction in the Quran.
First we will look at the chapter in Maryam chapter 19 verses 16 – 21.
16 Relate in the Book (the story of) Mary when she withdrew from her family to a place in the East.
17 She placed a screen (to screen herself) from them: then We sent to her Our Angel and he appeared before her as a man in all respects.
18 She said: “I seek refuge from thee to (Allah) Most Gracious: (come not near) if thou dost fear Allah.”
19 He said: “Nay I am only a messenger from thy Lord (to announce) to thee the gift of a holy son.”
20 She said: “How shall I have a son seeing that no man has touched me and I am not unchaste?”
21 He (the Angel) said: “So (it will be): thy Lord saith `That is easy for Me: and (We wish) to appoint him (Jesus (a.s.) as a Sign unto men and a Mercy from Us’: it is a matter (so) decreed.”
And now we will look at the verses in chapter 3 Al-Imran verses 42-47:
42. And [mention] when the angels said, “O Mary, indeed Allah has chosen you and purified you and chosen you above the women of the worlds.
43. O Mary, be devoutly obedient to your Lord and prostrate and bow with those who bow [in prayer].”
44. That is from the news of the unseen which We reveal to you, [O Muhammad]. And you were not with them when they cast their pens as to which of them should be responsible for Mary. Nor were you with them when they disputed.
45. [And mention] when the angels said, “O Mary, indeed Allah gives you good tidings of a word from Him, whose name will be the Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary – distinguished in this world and the Hereafter and among those brought near [to Allah].
46. He will speak to the people in the cradle and in maturity and will be of the righteous.”
47. She said, “My Lord, how will I have a child when no man has touched me?” [The angel] said, “Such is Allah; He creates what He wills. When He decrees a matter, He only says to it, ‘Be,’ and it is.
When one thoroughly examines the conversations, one can see that they occured at 2 different times. In any case the 47th verse in chapter Al-Imran is the key verse.
Then in the 45th verse after the angel spoke to Mary only one angel spoke to Mary, namely the Angel Gabrial. In the case of the verses between 42-46 explain to us one event, the verse 47 another event. Also in verse 45 the word (قَالَتِ – Qalet) is used for angel, but in verse 47 the word (قَالَ – Qale) is used because only one angel spoke. As one knows, from beginning to end that not only one single topic is covered in one surah.
It goes through one topic and after a while another topic. It was administered so in this chapter. Like before a conversation with the angels was told, and shortly after another event, but this time with only one angel.
At the end one can say that no such contradiction that is claimed exists.