Paper money in the Quran
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Paper money are not mentioned in the Quran. The Quran only mentions the word ورق (wariq), which means "silver (coin)".
Paper money was first used in China in the 11th century.
Jiaozi was a form of promissory banknote which appeared around the 11th century in the Sichuan capital of Chengdu, China. Numismatists regard it as the first paper money in history, a development of the Chinese Song Dynasty (960-1279 CE).
However the Quran says that paper money was known and used long before the Chinese:
[Quran 18:19] Even so, We awakened them, so that they may ask one another. A speaker among them said, "How long have you stayed?" They said, "We have stayed a day, or part of a day." They said, "Your Lord knows best how long you have stayed." "Send one of you to the city, with this paper money of yours, and let him see which food is most suitable, and let him bring you some provision thereof. And let him be gentle, and let no one become aware of you."
"Warak in Arabic ورق " means paper. "Warikikum بِوَرِقِكُمْ " means your paper money, not coins. So the Quran says that paper money was known and used centuries before the Chinese.
How could an illiterate man who lived 1400 years ago have known about paper money?
If first paper money was used in China in the 11th century and the Quran (from the 7th century) talks about paper money being used in the past, then it proves that the Quran is false.
And besides that, the word wariq doesn't even mean "paper money".
Classical translations of the verse don't mention paper money:
Likewise, We awakened them (from their long deep sleep) that they might question one another. A speaker from among them said: "How long have you stayed (here)?" They said: "We have stayed (perhaps) a day or part of a day." They said: "Your Lord (Alone) knows best how long you have stayed (here). So send one of you with this silver coin of yours to the town, and let him find out which is the good lawful food, and bring some of that to you. And let him be careful and let no man know of you.
And in like manner We awakened them that they might question one another. A speaker from among them said: How long have ye tarried? They said: We have tarried a day or some part of a day, (Others) said: Your Lord best knoweth what ye have tarried. Now send one of you with this your silver coin unto the city, and let him see what food is purest there and bring you a supply thereof. Let him be courteous and let no man know of you.
And similarly, We awakened them that they might question one another. Said a speaker from among them, "How long have you remained [here]?" They said, "We have remained a day or part of a day." They said, "Your Lord is most knowing of how long you remained. So send one of you with this silver coin of yours to the city and let him look to which is the best of food and bring you provision from it and let him be cautious. And let no one be aware of you.
Such (being their state), we raised them up (from sleep), that they might question each other. Said one of them, "How long have ye stayed (here)?" They said, "We have stayed (perhaps) a day, or part of a day." (At length) they (all) said, "Allah (alone) knows best how long ye have stayed here.... Now send ye then one of you with this money of yours to the town: let him find out which is the best food (to be had) and bring some to you, that (ye may) satisfy your hunger therewith: And let him behave with care and courtesy, and let him not inform any one about you.
Waraq or wariq?
It doesn't matter that waraq (وَرَق) means "paper", beause the Quran uses the word wariq (وَرِق). And wariq according to Lane's lexicon means:
وَرِقٌ Silver, whether coined or not: (AO, TA:) or coined dirhems; (Ṣ, Ḳ;) coined silver. (Mgh.) See عَيْنٌ.
(So send one of you with this silver coin of yours) They had brought with them some Dirhams (silver coins) from their homes, to buy whatever they might need, and they had given some in charity and kept some, so they said:
And so just as We did with them that which We have mentioned it was that We aroused them We awakened them that they might question one another concerning their state and the length of their stay in the cave. One of them said ‘How long have you tarried?’ They said ‘We have tarried a day or part of a day’ he said this because they had entered the cave at sunrise and were awakened at sunset and so they thought that it was the time of sunset on the day of their entry. Then they said unsure about this fact ‘Your Lord knows best how long you have tarried. Now send one of you with this silver coin of yours read bi-warqikum or bi-wariqikum to the city — which is said to be the one now called Tarsus Tarasūs — and let him see which is the purest food that is which of the foods of the city is the purest and let him bring you a supply thereof. Let him be careful and not make anyone aware of you.
Wariq in the hadiths
Wariq means "silver" in the hadiths and it shows that al-wariq was used in the time of Muhammad:
Abu Sa'id al-Khudri (Allah be pleased with him) reported Allah's Messenger (ﷺ) as saying:
Do not sell gold for gold and silver for silver (الْوَرِقَ بِالْوَرِقِ, al-wariqa bil-wariqi) weight for weight or of the same quality.
Malik related to me that he had heard that Umar ibn al-Khattab estimated the full blood-money for the people of urban areas. For those who had gold, he made it one thousand dinars. and for those who had silver (الْوَرِقِ, al-wariq) he made it ten thousand dirhams.
- All words in the Quran from the root ورق
- The word "waraq" doesn't even mean "paper", but "leaves" in the Quran.
- miracles-of-quran.com: Paper money