In the seventh century of the Common Era (C.E.) the Prophet Muhammad began to spread the idea of monotheism through the Arabian Peninsula. He did this with a claim that the one true God had spoken to him, in Arabic, through the angel Gabriel. Muhammad was initially met with skepticism and hostility, but by the time of his death his message had begun to take hold such that the religion of Islam was beginning to flourish and within 100 years of his death was the dominant religion of the Middle East. This paper will examine the manner in which Muhammad and his immediate followers spread Islam and built a society based on the ideals of universal justice as articulated in the Qur’an, and compare their methods with the spread of Christianity in the first century C.E. by the Apostle Paul.
The position taken by this paper is that there is no way to know if any god or God spoke to Muhammad or to the Apostle Paul or if Jesus of Nazareth, aka Jesus Christ, is/was God or the Son of God or was a prophet of God, or if there even is a “God.” Therefore this paper will approach the actions taken by the Prophet Muhammad and the Apostle Paul, as well as any and all other individuals, as actions taken by human beings exercising their own free wills.