Bismillah hir Rahman nir Rahim
He is the second of the major prophets and one that had general religion and laws. God did say in the chapter of Al-Nahl: Lo! Abraham was a nation obedient to Allah, by nature upright, and he was not of the idolaters; Thankful for His bounties; He chose him and He guided him unto a straight path.(Al-Nahl:120-121). What is brought by some tidings about interpreting this holy phrase that he (P.B.U.H.) had a religion that no one else had so he was like a nation alone, and obedient means that he was obeying and faithful. And as reported from Al-Kâthim (P.B.U.H.): In all the world save but one that was worshipping God and if there were someone else with him then God would add him in His saying “Abraham was a nation”, and then God made for him a company and gave him Ismael and Isaac, so they became three, and God talked to His beloved the prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H.) and ordered him to follow the religion of Abraham, and in some news from Al-Husain ben `Ali (P.B.U.H.): None is following the path of Abraham except of us and our followers and all the people are astraying away from it. Abraham is the son of Terah (Tarah) [ Hebrew: Terach, Arabic: Târih] ben Nahor ben Serug ben Reu [Arabic: Ar`u] ben Peleg [Arabic: Fâlig] ben Eber [Arabic: `Âbir] ben Salah [Arabic: Shâlikh] ben Arfakhshað ben Shem ben Noah (P.B.U.T.), as it is mentioned in Murooj Al-Ðahab for Al-Mas`udi and some stories for Abdul-Wahâb Al-Najjâr go along with such chain of fathers although there are some differences in four names, but such differences never harm. His birth took place in one of Kufa’s villages in Iraq that was called Kuþâr and some said it is called Fadân-Arâm (Paddan-Aram) and his father was one of people of this village, and the mother of Abraham and the mother of Lot were sisters and they were daughters of Lâhij and Lâhij was a prophet but not a messenger, and Abraham got married to Sarah and she was his maternal cousin and she owned many cattle and a large landscape, and so then she had put all of that under the control of Abraham (P.B.U.H.) and he worked on taking care of it all, and all of that is taken from a speech for Al-Sâdiq (P.B.U.H.) and it is long.
It is also mentioned that Lot was rather the nephew of Abraham (son of his brother) and there is no conflict in that since that Terah, the father of Abraham, is the father of Hârân (Haran), the father of Lot, so then Terah and His son Haran married two sisters and they are the daughters of Lâhij and they gave birth to Abraham ben Terah and Lot ben Haran (P.B.U.T) and so Lot is the maternal cousin for Abraham and his brother’s son as well, be aware and you will understand, and we’ve come to mention before that Sarah was the maternal cousin for Abraham and she is the sister of Lot but she was the sister of Lot by the mother and not by the father [meaning: her father is NOT Haran himself, but someone else], because Haran is the brother of Abraham and so Abraham can’t get married to his brother’s daughter, but after the death of Haran, the father of Sarah got married to her mother and she gave birth to Sarah, so obviously, Sarah is the sister of Lot by his mother and she is the maternal cousin of Abraham, and Lot is the nephew of Abraham and also his maternal cousin. It is reported from the book of Barnaba that Abraham was a lad from Paddan-Aram in Iraq, and his people were pagans and his father was a carpenter that makes idols and sell it to whoever worships them, and that Abraham was enlightened by God and guided by Him and knew that idols don’t hear nor see, and they don’t hear any call and can’t answer any pray and don’t harm nor give benefits, and this is also what was mentioned in Torah, and in Holy Quran it is mentioned in the chapter of Al-Anbiyâ’: And We verily gave Abraham of old his proper course, and We were Aware of him, When he said unto his father and his folk: What are these images unto which ye pay devotion? (Al-Anbiyâ’:51-52), and in the chapter of Al-An`âm: (Remember) when Abraham said unto his father Azar: Takest thou idols for gods? Lo! I see thee and thy folk in error manifest(Al-An`âm:74), and in the chapter of Al-Sho`arâ’: Recite unto them the story of Abraham, When he said unto his father and his folk: What worship ye? They said: We worship idols, and are ever devoted unto them.(Al-Sho`arâ’:69-71), and also: And forgive my father. Lo! he is of those who err(Al-Sho`arâ’:86).
Whoever noticed the conversation between Abraham and his father Azar in the holy book would see a man with great patience and passion and no one is like him, and whenever his father steps away from him he goes to him to guide him for he is afraid for him from the torture in the after-life, while his father Azar exaggerated with his cruelty, but he was trying to make him happy and loved by God, but Azar was escaping away from him and promising him the punishment of the idols and the judgment of Nemrud. Look by the eye of the heart to this conversation and to the passion of the friend of God and the cruelty of Azar from the chapter of Mariam which tells the debate between a pagan that couldn’t catch happiness and a prophet and a messenger of God, Abraham (P.B.U.H), and God said in it (the chapter of Mariam): And make mention (O Muhammad) in the Scripture of Abraham. Lo! he was a saint, a prophet. When he said unto his father: O my father! Why worshippers thou that which hearth not nor seethe, nor can in aught avail thee ? O my father! Lo! there hath come unto me of knowledge that which came not unto thee. So follow me, and I will lead thee on a right path. O my father! Serve not the devil. Lo! the devil is a rebel unto the Beneficent(Mariam:41-44), and his answer to him was: He said: Rejects thou my gods, O Abraham ? If thou cease not, I shall surely stone thee. Depart from me a long while! He said: Peace be unto thee! I shall ask forgiveness of my Lord for thee. Lo! He was ever gracious unto me(Mariam:46-47).
Then Abraham (P.B.U.H) disowned Azar and his deeds and did not like to live in his place and between his people so he left them by an order from God to Palestine and Shaam [Shaam: Syria and the surroundings], and Abraham was looking for guiding his father and his father promised to follow him and for this he did pray for forgiveness for his father but when he knew that he will keep on worshipping the idols and stay on the religion of his people he (Abraham) disowned him and his people and their worshipping, and this is testified by the chapter of Al-Tawbah: The prayer of Abraham for the forgiveness of his father was only because of a promise he had promised him, but when it had become clear unto him that he (his father) was an enemy to Allah he (Abraham) disowned him. Lo! Abraham was soft of heart, long-suffering(Al-Tawbah:114). In the stories of Abdul-Wahab Al-Najjâr: Then Abraham did travel to Palestine as a stranger with his wife Sarah and his nephew Lot and his wife, God did say in the chapter of Al-`Ankaboot: And Lot believed him, and said: Lo! I am a fugitive unto my Lord. Lo! He, only He, is the Mighty, the Wise(Al-`Ankaboot:26) and so they lived there and it was the land of Canaanites and he (Abraham) lived in Shakim and it is now the city of Nabulus but he didn’t stay for long time but he kept on moving to the south as denoted by some Toratic phrases about his journey to Egypt and to the land of Abi-Mâlik (Abimelech) [Hebrew: Abiymelek]. There is a talk that has some conflicts, and the one that quoted it is hesitated since the resources for this talk are the Torah and the Bibles mostly, and still they have some opposition and conflicts in the same resource and also between each of them, so we don’t quote anything unless we make sure it coincide with what we are sure that it is been told by the holy prophet (P.B..U.H.) and the holy Quran by the way of his Household the purified, or whatever is close to that by the way of others which is accepted by the righteous mind and thought and logic.
Al-Mas`udi announced in Muruj Al-Ðahab [book’s name: Plains of Gold], that Azar is Terah the father of Abraham, and what is apparent is that Azar is a character (description) for Terah ben Nahor according to him (Al-Mas`udi), so he said about it this: and when God took the soul of Nahor, his son Terah stood after him and he is Azar the father of Abraham and at his time lived the king Nimrod..etc. [in the book it is Nimrod ben Canaan, but searching in the old testament the only trace I had is Nimrod ben Cush]. It is apparent that most of our brothers of Islamic scholars and historians believe that the father of Abraham was a pagan, and one of them also Abdul-Wahâb Al-Najjâr, for this is what is obvious from the holy phrases. After proving that Azar is Terah ben Nahor the father of Abraham, he (Abdul-Wahâb) mentioned some interpretations for the word “Azar” as being a substitute for the word “father” that was mentioned in Quran, or it might be a word for calling shame upon him (maybe because he stood beside falsehood and paganism) [notice: Âzar in Arabic means “he helped”], or it might mean “to restrain”, and Terah is his name but Azar is a character for him or an adjective.
And Al-Râzi said in his interpretation for the holy phrase “when Abraham said unto his father Azar”(Al-An`âm:74): what this phrase shows is that Azar is the name of Abraham’s father. And said Al-Zajjâj: there is no doubt that his name was Terah. And some people that have no faith made this a point of crack in holy Quran, and there are some explanations been mentioned about this matter, one of them is that the father of Abraham (P.B.U.H) was Terah and Azar was his uncle, and the uncle could be called as “father” as it is mentioned by God in telling the story of the sons of Jacob when they said: We shall worship thy God, the God of thy fathers, Abraham and Ishmael and Isaac(Al-Baqarah:133), and it is well known that Ishmael was an uncle for Jacob but they called him as “father” and so it is the situation here, and then said Al-Zajjâj: the Shiites said that none of the prophet’s (P.B.U.H) fathers was a pagan or a disbeliever [meaning the prophet Muhammad] and they mentioned that Azar is his (Abraham’s) uncle and they got the clues for it, so then he mentioned the point of views and the clues in a long speech and talk and it is well known for them (Sunnites) in their creed for whoever has the knowledge of it. One of the point of views is God’s saying: Who seethe thee when thou stands up (to pray), And (seethe) thine abasement among those who fall prostrate (in worship) (Al-Shu`arâ’:218-219), meaning that his halo was moving from one to another among those who fall prostrate until it became to `Abdul-Muttalib [Grandfather of Muhammad P.B.U.H]and his son `Abdullah [father of Muhammad P.B.U.H.] so then it became to existence [meaning the halo was moving from ancestors until it became apparent by the existence of Muhammad P.B.U.H], and more explanations will become in the future by God’s own will.
In summary, they don’t believe that his (Abraham’s) father was a faithful, and according to their creed (Sunnites) is it not a shame and accepted for they don’t believe in the condition of the infallibility and faithfulness of the ancestors of prophets and messengers, but our scholars according to their Imams, the Household of Muhammad (P.B..U.H) don’t say this, and they believe absolutely that the prophets and messengers and their viceroys don’t become to existence accept from holy and faithful and infallible ancestors, and since this is possible as well as their assumption and God is able to do it, then why not believing in it, and how dare we say about a prophet or a messenger from God to His creation or even about their viceroys that were appointed by God also, how dare we say that he is a son of a pagan or a fallible person or a wicked man, and there is more to come about this matter if God allowed that.