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Where did the Koran come from?

The author of the Koran was Muhammad, born in Mecca around 570 AD. A deeply spiritual man, he knew of the Jewish and Christian teaching and prayed faithfully. Muhammad was bothered by the idolatry he saw around him in Arabia and the people’s rejection of God. He knew a monotheistic faith was the only way and pagan idolatry was wrong.

One night while praying in a cave, around 610 AD during the month of the year (or Ramadan on today’s Islamic calendar), Muhammad claimed to be visited by the angel Gabriel who told him to recite what he was going to be told. Muhammad received many revelations over his lifetime. Thus the Koran was born.

The Koran is divided into 114 chapters called Surahs. There is also a corresponding name to the chapter, the word usually appearing in the text of the chapter it highlights. (The Cow, Women, The Table, The Heights. . .etc.). The first number tells the reader where the chapter appears in order from 1 to 114 and the second tells the reader the verse in that chapter.

So Surah 5:48 means the fifth chapter, forty-eighth verse.

The original language of the Koran was Arabic and many consider that the only language it can be read in. Since Arabic is not the language of most readers, we must use translations we can understand from reliable Islamic sources.

The Koran is arranged by length of the chapter. The longest at the front and shorter ones at the back. Arranging the chapters by order of when Muhammad received the revelation has proved difficult. Every Surah was written by Muhammad, dictated to a friend since he did not read or write. It contains many references to the Bible.