God is not Immanent and is Immaterial

Rational belief in God’s Attributes

How then can God’s Attributes be understood if they are unlike His creation?

Surah Ta Ha Chapter 20 Verse 110

He [Allah] knows what happens to them [His creatures] in this world and what will happen to them, but they will never compass anything of His Knowledge.[6]

It is not possible to know how the Hands of God are, because God is immaterial and, as material creatures, we can only affirm their existence.

Surah Al-Baqarah Chapter 2 Verse 140

Or say you that Ibrahim [Prophet Abraham], Ishma’il [Prophet Ishmael], Ishaq [Prophet Isaac], Ya’qub [Prophet Jacob] and the offspring of the twelve sons of Ya’qub were Jews or Christians? Say, “Do you know better or does Allah?” And who is more unjust than he who conceals the testimony he has from Allah? And Allah is not unaware of what you do.[7]

God knows Himself better than anyone else.

Surah An-Nahl Chapter 16 Verse 74

So put not forward similarities for Allah. Truly Allah knows and you know not.[8]

God’s attributes like His Hands must be affirmed without likening them to His creation, because God knows Himself and we do not.

Therefore, the rational course of action, according to the Qur’an, is to believe in God as He has described Himself without interpreting away His attributes from the apparent meaning which first springs to mind.

This agrees with our conclusion on timeless-causality:

  • that only God can know how He causes, how He brought into existence and indeed how He interacts with the material time-contingent universe
  • that the answer can only be found, if at all, in divine revelation
  • that we will have reached at this point the limit of human knowledge, the boundary between reason and belief in the Unseen
  • that, therefore, the answer from divine revelation has to be accepted as a matter of belief

The attributes of God, like His Hands, therefore, have to be accepted as a matter of belief, and this is affirmed in the Qur’an.


[1] Surah Az-Zumar Chapter 39 Verse 67

[2] Surah Al-Anbiya’ Chapter 21 Verse 104

[3] Surah Ash-Shura Chapter 42 Verse 51

[4] Surah Al-A’raf Chapter 7 Verse 143

[5] Surah Ash-Shura Chapter 42 Verse 11

[6] Surah Ta Ha Chapter 20 Verse 110

[7] Surah Al-Baqarah Chapter 2 Verse 140

[8] Surah An-Nahl Chapter 16 Verse 74

Pages: 1 2 3

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *