(i) More than one world
The very first verse of the first chapter of the Quran is a miracle. It says:
“Praise be to Allah, the Lord of the worlds.”
(The Quran, 1:1)
At a time when, perhaps, scientific knowledge was not even at the nascent stage, the Quran revealed about the presence of worlds other than the earth and testified to the fact that, “Allah is the Lord of the worlds”. As a matter of fact, the words, “the Lord of the worlds”, appear in the Quran a total of 73 times. With scientific advancement and use of sophisticated telescopes now we know that there are other planets and multitude of galaxies besides earth. And all this was disclosed to us by the God Almighty through his prophet Mohammad ( P.B.U.H ) 14 centuries ago.
(ii) The expansion of the universe
According to the Holy Quran:
“And it is We who have constructed the heaven with might, and verily, it is We who are steadily expanding it.” (51:47)
The word “heaven”, as stated in this verse, is used in various places with the meaning of space and universe. Here again, the word is used with this meaning.
At the beginning of the 20th century, the Russian physicist Alexander Friedmann and the Belgian cosmologist Georges Lemaitre theoretically calculated that the universe is in constant motion and that it is expanding.
From the moment of the Big Bang, the universe has been constantly expanding at a great speed. Scientists compare the expanding universe to the surface of a balloon that is inflated. Observing the sky in 1929 with a telescope also proved this fact. Edwin Hubble, the American astronomer, discovered that the stars and galaxies were constantly moving away from each other. These observations tell us that when everything in the universe moves away from each other, it is considered to be a constantly expanding universe. This fact was revealed in the Quran when no one knew about the expansion of the universe 1,400 years ago. This is because the Quran is the word of Allah, the Creator and the Ruler of the entire universe.
(iii) Sky, without any support
Due to lack of knowledge, Arab society, 1400 years ago, had many superstitious beliefs regarding the earth and the sky.
They thought that the earth was flat and that the mountains were supporting the sky above. They thought that there were high mountains at both the ends of the world, working as pillars and those pillars held the sky hanging above. However, all these superstitious beliefs were eliminated with the advent of the Quran. The Quran says:
“God is He who raised up the heavens without any support…..” (Surah ar-rad, 2)
thereby invalidating the belief that the sky remained suspended above because of the mountains. How did the author of the Quran know about this fact 1400 years ago? Indeed, Quran is the book of Allah, the Creator of the heavens and the earth.
We learn from the Quran that:
“By the sky full of paths and orbits.”
(The Quran, 51:7)
The entire universe is full of paths and orbits. The Quran also tells us that:
“(Allah is the) One who created the night , and the day, and the sun and the moon, swim along, each in its (own) orbit.” (21:33)
“It is not permitted to the sun to overtake the moon, nor can the night outsrip the day, each swims along in its (own) orbit.” (36:40)
While referring to the Sun and the Moon in the Quran, it is emphasized that each moves in a certain orbit. There are about 200 billion galaxies in the universe, consisting of nearly 200 billion stars in each. All celestial bodies including planets, satellites of these planets, stars and even galaxies swim along their own orbits.
It is mentioned in another verse, too, that the Sun is not static but moves in a definite orbit.
“The sun runs on its fixed course for a term (appointed); that is the decree of the All-Mighty, the All-Knowing.” (Yaseen 36:38)
According to the calculations of experts on astronomy, the Sun is travelling at an enormous speed of 150 miles per second. It means that the sun travels roughly 12,960,000 miles a day!
The fact that this information was present in the Quran long before it was discovered by the mankind is yet another testimony that Allah, the All-Knowing, and the All-Wise is the source of this knowledge.
(v) Different nature of the sun and the moon
“Allah is the One who made the sun a shining object and the moon as a light, and measured out (their) stages, that you may know the number of years and the count (of time), Allah did not create this but in truth; He (thus) explains His signs in detail, for those who understand.” (The Quran, 10:5)
“We have built above you seven strong (heavens) and placed therein a blazing lamp.” (78:12-13)
“Do you not see how Allah has created the seven heavens one above another; And made the moon a light in their midst, and made the sun a lamp.” (71:15-16)
“Blessed is He who made constellations in the skies and placed therein a lamp (sun) and a moon giving light.” (25:61)
The Quran uses two different words for the sun and the moon. When it refers to the moon, the word is “NOOR” (light) and when it refers to the sun, the word is “SIRAJ” or “ZIA” (lamp). We also learn from the second verse given above that the sun is the only source of light for our solar system. The Quran also tells us that the moon only reflects the sun’s light. These facts are in perfect harmony with discoveries made in astronomy in not very distant past. The Quran had disclosed these facts 14 centuries ago.