Prophets and Messengers of God are referred to as the chosen beings who are sent by Allah (God) to guide people. It is essential to have faith in every Prophet and Messenger. A Prophet is a person upon whom divine revelation descends, and they are entrusted by Allah Subhanahoo Wata’ala to convey His commands and guidance to the people, whether they possess a divine scripture or not. A Messenger holds a higher status than a Prophet. A Messenger is a Prophet with special privileges, such as being given a divine scripture, or being sent to confront enemies. Therefore, it is clear that every Messenger is a Prophet, but not every Prophet is a Messenger. Prophets are numerous, while Messengers are fewer in number, with a tradition stating that the number of honored Prophets exceeds one hundred thousand, while the number of Messengers is around three hundred thirteen or slightly less.
Prophets do not acquire worldly knowledge, such as reading and writing, through formal education; instead, they are directly blessed with knowledge by Allah. Consequently, they are the most knowledgeable in their time and among their people. All the Prophets and Messengers share the same fundamental beliefs, known as creed, but their laws and regulations, known as religious jurisprudence, may differ. Every Prophet successfully fulfills their prophetic mission and the responsibility entrusted to them by Allah Subhanahoo Wata’ala, even if not everyone believes in them.
However, there can be occasional errors in judgment or interpretation by a Prophet, which do not undermine their prophethood and infallibility but may be attributed to their personal judgment. These errors do not contradict their status as Prophets and Messengers, but they are not infallible in every aspect of their lives.
It is necessary to have faith in all the Prophets and Messengers, and if someone denies even one Prophet or Messenger while having faith in the rest, their faith is invalidated. The first Prophet is Prophet Adam (ﷺ), and the first Messenger is Prophet Noah (ﷺ).
The best of humanity are the Prophets, with the highest among them being the Messengers, and the greatest of Messengers are known as “Ulul Azm min ar-Rusul” (those of firm resolve among the Messengers). They include Prophet Noah, Prophet Abraham, Prophet Moses, Prophet Jesus, and Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ). Faith in Allah Subhanahoo Wata’ala is not considered valid without faith in the Prophets and Messengers, as believing in them is part of having faith in Allah Subhanahoo Wata’ala. Allah Subhanahoo Wata’ala has sent Prophets and Messengers to every nation and region, and there is no community or place where Allah Subhanahoo Wata’ala has not sent a Prophet.
Prophethood and Messengership are not attained through worship or asceticism; rather, they are a divine gift and Allah’s choice. Allah Subhanahoo Wata’ala bestows the station of Prophethood and Messengership on those He wills, and it is not achieved through worship or asceticism. Prophets and Messengers are never removed from their positions. They are born as Prophets, and their death does not change their status. Allah elevates individuals to the rank of Prophethood based on His divine knowledge, and He does not choose someone for Prophethood whom He will later remove from that position.
Every Prophet is truthful and trustworthy, a bearer of glad tidings of paradise and a warner of hellfire. They possess the highest moral character and excel in every virtue among their people. They do not seek rewards for their message, are free from any form of pretense, and convey Allah’s verses to the people, imparting knowledge and wisdom. Every Prophet is infallible, meaning they are protected from committing any major or minor sins, whether intentionally or unintentionally.
Apart from the Prophets and Messengers, no one else is infallible.