SHAFAQNA -Â The total number of prophets that God sent to humanity was 124,000, and although they were sent to nearly all civilizations, the Quran only mentions twenty-five of them by name. The first of them was Prophet Adam, the father of humanity, and the last of them was Prophet Muhammad, the seal of the prophets.
Throughout history, different messengers with slightly different messages were sent to diverse societies. The reason was that the religious needs of humanity were growing and developing just as the human race was growing and developing. Also, diverse civilizations needed to be approached differently in relation to guidance. Nevertheless, the source and basic message behind the calling was the same â€“ that there was only one God.
God sent Prophet Moses with the Torah as a light and guidance for the Children of Israel, along with many other prophets, such as prophets David and Solomon.
One thousand and five hundred years after Prophet Moses, God sent Prophet Jesus, the son of Mary, confirming the Torah and bringing the Gospel, which was also a book of guidance and light.
Finally, six-hundred years after Prophet Jesus, God sent Prophet Muhammad with the Quran to confirm the messages sent before him and to complete the revelation of a universal religion to humanity.
Since all of the Judeo-Christian-Islamic prophets were sequentially sent, the question arises as to why Judaism, Christianity, and Islam now exist as separate religions. The answer is that the followers of these religions, particularly Judaism and Christianity, interpreted the teachings of their prophets differently. The Quran says,
â€œVerily, the religion with Allah is Islam [total submission to Allahâ€™s will]; and those whom the Book had been given did not differ but after the knowledge [the truth] had come unto them, out of envy among themselves.â€Â (3:19)
Nevertheless, many scholars consider the different religions as a Divine test. The Quran says,
â€œFor each of you, We have made a Law and a clear way. If Allah had willed, He would have made you one nation but that He may test you in what He has given you. So strive in good deeds. Your return is to Allah; then He will inform you about that which you used to differ.â€Â (5:48)