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Massive Online Encyclopedia of Islam : ABRAHAM

Heb: Click to ViewClick to ViewClick to ViewClick to ViewClick to View. His name means "father of a multitude" or "chief of multitude"

In Islam, Abraham is called the Friend of God, Khalilu 'llah and his name occurs 69 times in the Qur'an, making him the second most-occuring name of prophets in the Qur'an after Moses. He was supposed to be one of the six prophets in Islam to whom God delivered special laws. He was said to be given twenty portions (suhifah) of scripture.

The father of Abraham in the Qur'an is Azar, in contrast to Terah in the Bible (Genesis 11:25-26) and the Midrash. In fact, ibn Hisham gave the name as Tarih, sufficiently close to the Bible's. Thus, this name is known to Muslims. It is a curious question on what basis and for what reasons is his name called Azar in the Qur'an? It is not clear if there is any etymological connection between these two names. However, according to Tisdall on the authority of the historian Eusebius, the Syrian name had a similar sound to Azar. Perhaps, that is how Muhammad came to know of this name during one of his merchantile expeditions to Syria.

Abraham's original name was Abram (Click to ViewClick to ViewClick to ViewClick to View) meaning "exalted father". God later changed his name to Abraham at the age of 99 (Genesis 17:5). However, the Qur'an calls "Abraham" a youth.

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