Did Adam and Eve really sin?


Hence Adam and Eve had not sinned. Adam and Eve did exactly what God wanted them to do for God’s plan to work. If not then Adam and Eve would have remained in Paradise and none of us will be here today. And that is not what God had intended.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

Around 12 years ago, back in 2002, a close friend of mine commissioned me to write a book based on the lectures by Dr. Tareq Mohammed Al-Suwaidan. (You can read more about this man in the short introduction below).

The title of this book is “The Stories of the Prophets in Al Quran”.

Of course, after I wrote that book, it was sent for editing so I can be said to have actually written the draft of the book rather that the book itself.

Anyway, I thought maybe we could continue with the earlier debate we had in my article “If God exists then God is not infallible” (READ HERE). Today’s article, of course, is more for the benefit of those Muslim readers who have commented on my views and assumptions, in particular regarding the role of Iblis in the plot to bring about the downfall of humankind.

And, for this purpose, I will refer specifically to the Quran rather than to the Abrahamic belief in general. Hence non-Muslims may find this article boring or irrelevant to them. However, in the interest of understanding the Islamic view to what the Bible says, do continue reading if you so desire. At least for you who are Christians (or Jews) you will know where you agree and disagree with Islam.

Okay, let me quote what Dr. Tareq Mohammed Al-Suwaidan said, and which is what I wrote 12 years ago. As follows is an extract from Chapter 1: “The beginning of creation”.

Amongst the noblest of Allah’s creatures are the Angels. There are various categories of Angels and each has its own noble mission. One of these Angels, the chief of all the Angels, is Gabriel (Jibrael), whose function is to convey Allah’s messages to humanity through His prophets.

Allah also created the Jinns. The Jinns were created from fire and are quite different from the Angels who were created from light.

The Angels are Allah’s soldiers and their main purpose is to worship Him and carry out His Commands. They are pure and of noble character. The Jinns, however, are of a different characteristic – some of them are good, while others downright evil.

One of the most notorious of the Jinns is the Iblis (Satan), who was originally of equal status to the Angels. However, when Allah commanded them to prostrate to Adam they refused and, therefore, became a symbol of evil.

That clears the issue of Iblis and his status in Paradise. Now let us go to Chapter 2, “The Creation of Adam”.

It was Allah’s intention that a vicegerent would rule this earth and would succeed one another to perpetuate the human race. Allah wanted humankind to populate this earth because the Jinns were incapable of doing this. It is said that the Jinns had the intelligence of a ten-year old human and was less equipped to populate or develop this world. Man, on the other hand, were created with all the faculties required and are best suited to do the job. The Angels, however, were not that confident in man’s ability.

The Angels knew that man would have intrinsic weaknesses (one who will make mischief therein and shed blood). This was merely a statement rather than an objection because Angels do not disobey Allah and do what they are ordered.

The Angels had witnessed the destruction on earth brought on by the Jinns when they had a free choice between doing good and doing evil. Now, this new creation, man, may do exactly what the Jinns had done and kill each other.

Okay, now we go to Chapter 3: “Adam succumbs to temptation and is evicted from Paradise”.

After Allah had breathed a spirit into Adam, He instructed all other creations such as Angels and Jinns to bow down to Adam. Iblis refused to prostrate to Adam because he regarded Adam, who was made from mere earth, as weaker and therefore inferior to Jinns, who were made from fire.

Also, Iblis found that Adam had internal organs (hollow inside) whereas Iblis had no abdomen. Iblis believed he was more laudable than Adam so he refused to prostrate to Adam although Allah had commanded him to do so.

Allah chided Iblis, saying that he is but a humble creature. How could he be so arrogant and defy Allah? Iblis, still refusing to repent, asked Allah for a postponement of punishment till the Day of Judgment.

Iblis did not want forgiveness. Neither did he want to repent to redeem himself. He accepted the punishment for his crime of disobedience but merely wanted the punishment delayed till the Day of Judgment.

And the reason Iblis wanted time was so that he could take revenge on man for what happened to him. Iblis wanted to trap man and mislead him. Iblis said he will destroy all the descendants of Adam save for a few who will obey Allah and be spared a fate in Hell. Allah allowed Iblis to carry out his plan with a warning to man that those who follow Iblis will suffer Iblis’s fate in Hell.

After Eve had been created, Iblis tried to tempt Adam to do evil. Everything in Paradise was allowed except the fruit from only one tree, which Allah forbade Adam to touch. But Eve succumbed to Iblis’s temptation and ate from the forbidden tree. She then persuaded Adam to do the same, which he did. Iblis had succeeded in leading man astray and they immediately fell naked.

Adam confessed his transgression and Allah forgave him. However, he was punished for his disobedience and for succumbing to Iblis’s treachery and he was evicted from Paradise.

Okay, those are the extracts from the first three chapters of that book. The chapters are actually longer than that with verses of the Quran and quotes from the Hadith and so on. However, I have condensed the story for easier reading.

Now begins my questions to this story, a story from the Quran and a story that no religious scholar or ulama’ will dispute.

Iblis was a mischief-maker and one of the Jinns. Hence he is more powerful than humankind. So, if God does not monitor or curtail Iblis and allows Iblis to tempt and mislead humankind, what chance does humankind have against Iblis?

The argument offered (even stated in that book I wrote) is that God allows us freewill and we are free to do what we want but we will have to face the punishment for disobeying God.

However, did God not know beforehand that His new and innocent creation did not have the experience of the treacherous and evil ways of Iblis and would, therefore, be defeated by Iblis? God knew that Iblis will succeed and that Adam and Eve would fail the test. So why allow it since this failure would displease God? Even the other Angels knew that Adam was going to fail and they said so.

Chapter 2 says: It was Allah’s intention that a vicegerent would rule this earth and would succeed one another to perpetuate the human race.

So this was God’s plan all along, then, that man would inhabit and populate the earth.

But then when Adam and Eve failed the test and got tricked/tempted by Iblis, God evicted them from Paradise and sent them down to earth as punishment.

So, we are here on earth as descendants of Adam and Eve as a form of punishment. But God had intended from the very beginning that we live here on earth. That was the reason God created Adam, and then Eve.

Hence do you mean that God had intended to punish us from the very beginning and that Iblis was part of this plan and that if Iblis had failed to trick/tempt Adam and Eve then God’s plan for us to live on earth would have failed?

The story above is from the Quran and parts of it coincide with the Bible. The question that comes to mind is: if God had intended for Adam to be the vicegerent on earth from the very beginning, then this eviction from Paradise and banishment to earth has to happen for God’s plan to work. Iblis’s ‘treacherous’ action, therefore, is exactly what God wanted for God’s plan to work.

Hence Adam and Eve had not sinned. Adam and Eve did exactly what God wanted them to do for God’s plan to work. If not then Adam and Eve would have remained in Paradise and none of us will be here today. And that is not what God had intended.

So, to those Muslim readers who have suggested that I go learn about Islam before opening my mouth, let me assure you that I have. In fact, I have even written a book about what the Quran has to say about the history of mankind and the stories of all the Prophets from Adam right up to Muhammad. But that does not mean I cannot try to analyse these stories and ask questions. And if you think that then you are not what we would call a thinking and progressive Muslim.



Dr. Tareq Mohammed Al-Suwaidan is a Kuwaiti entrepreneur, author and speaker, and a leader of the Kuwaiti Muslim Brotherhood. He is well known in the Middle East and in Muslim communities throughout the world for his management/strategic planning training, motivational speaking and television shows and appearances.

According to the Forbes magazine, Al-Suwaidan ranks second in annual net income among Islamic speakers in the Muslim world with an estimated net profit of $1 million in 2007.

Al-Suwaidan was trained in the classical Islamic sciences in his youth and lived and studied in the United States, having received a B.S. in petroleum and natural gas engineering from Penn State University and a M.Sc. and Ph.D. in petroleum engineering from the University of Tulsa.

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