Objection: “Encyclopedic knowledge of language may exist among people, this negates the Muslim argument for the Qur’an”

The skeptic says that one of the arguments in favor of the miraculous nature of the Qur’an is that no one person can possibly know the language from top to bottom, to the point that he can compose something that is impossible for others to imitate (which means that only Allah put the Qur’an together in its arrangement and composition). But the skeptic says that this point is weak, since there are people who have a super-encyclopedic knowledge of Arabic or any other given language. Is this a valid objection in your view?

Answered by Sharif Randhawa (Researcher at Bayyinah Institute, owner of Qur’anic Musings blog), with slight modifications

I don’t know how the opponent could expect the Prophet ﷺ, who had no formal education in language or poetics, to have an “encyclopedic knowledge of Arabic” since there is no evidence to back up this claim. But in any case, simply having vast knowledge of any language does not amount to producing an unsurpassed work of literature – it is not a robotic process where one condition leads to the other.

Also consider that all of the scholars who did have encyclopedic knowledge of Arabic and wrote extensive lexicons and grammars of the Arabic language believed the Qur’an was a miracle of the Arabic language, and in fact compiled these sources for the very purpose of studying it.

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