Prophet Adam’s Prayer

“Our Lord! We have wronged our own souls: If thou forgive us not and bestow not upon us Thy Mercy, we shall certainly be lost.”


In the Quran

The story of Adam and creation is pieced throughout the Quran. There are references in suras 2, 4, 5, 7, 15, 20, 21, 38 and others.

According to the Quran, God created humankind out of clay, shaped it to a form and then commanded the angels to bow (submit) to Adam. Iblis (Devil) refused out of pride and was banished from Jannah (Paradise).

According to the Quran, God had already decided before the creation of Adam that mankind (Adam and his progeny) would be placed on earth. Islam does not ascribe mankind’s life on earth as a punishment, rather as part of God’s plan.

“‘Verily, I am going to place mankind generations after generations on earth.’ They (the angels) said: ‘Will You place therein those who will make mischief therein and shed blood, while we (the angels) glorify You with praises and thanks and sanctify You?’ God said: ‘I know that which you do not know.'”

God then teaches Adam the names of all things and assembles the angels in front of Adam so as to show them that there is more to Adam than they know, particularly the high intellectual capacity of Adam:

“And He taught Adam the names – all of them. Then He showed them to the angels and said, “Inform Me of the names of these, if you are truthful.” They said: “Glory to Thee (said the angels), of knowledge We have none, save what Thou Hast taught us: In truth, it is Thou Who art perfect in knowledge and wisdom.” He said: “O Adam! Tell them their names.” When he had told them, God said (to the angels): “Did I not tell you that I know the secrets of heaven and earth, and I know what ye reveal and what ye conceal?”

God commands the angels to bow down to Adam. All obey, except for Iblis, who feels that he is made from fire, should not be bowing to Adam who was made from earth. His disobedience of God’s command followed by his pride caused him to fall out of God’s favour:

“And behold, We said to the angels: “Bow down to Adam” and they bowed down. Not so Iblis: he refused and was haughty: He was of those who reject faith (those who are disobedient).” (2:34)

God later places Adam and Eve in the garden and tells them that they are free to enjoy of its fruits except not to come near a certain tree: (2:35)

“We said: “O Adam! dwell thou and thy wife in the Garden, and eat of the bountiful things therein as (where and when) ye will; but approach not this tree, or ye run into harm and transgression.”

Satan then deceives Adam and Eve into eating of the fruits of the tree: (2:36)

“Then did Satan make them slip from the (garden), and get them out of the state (of felicity) in which they had been. We said: “Get ye down, all (ye people), with some of you having enmity towards others. On earth will be your dwelling-place and your means of livelihood – for a time.”

Adam and Eve feel a lot of remorse for their actions, but God turns to Adam in mercy and consoles him: (2:37)

“Then learnt Adam from his Lord words of inspiration, and his Lord Turned towards him; for He is Oft-Returning, Most Merciful.”

God then informs Adam that God will send his guidance to Adam and his progeny: (2:38)

“We said: “Get down all of you from this place (the garden), then whenever there comes to you Guidance from Me, and whoever follows My Guidance, there shall be no fear on them, nor shall they grieve.”

In the Garden of Eden, Satan (often identified as Iblis) lures Adam and Eve into disobeying God by tasting the fruit from the forbidden tree. God, sends Adam and Eve out into the rest of the earth.

The Quran also describes the two sons of Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel.


Adam (ʼAdam, ʼĀḏāmآدَم‎, Ādam; Αδάμtranslit. Adám; Adam) is the name used in the opening chapters of the Book of Genesis and in the Quran for the first man created by God, but it is also used in a collective sense as “mankind” and individually as “a human”. Biblical Adam (man, mankind) is created from adamah (earth), and Genesis 1–8 makes considerable play of the bond between them, for Adam is estranged from the earth through his disobedience.

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