What is the difference between
Rasool and Nabi ?
After knowing the terminological meanings
of Rasul and Nabi, it is also important to understand the difference of these
two great positions.
The Quran has used both the words,
Nabi and Rasul, which shows that there were two kinds of messengers.
Some of the messengers were Nabi only.
- Some messengers
were both Nabi and Rasool.
The difference between
Rasul and Nabi is that,
A Rasul was a messenger
of Allah who was given a new Shariat (codes of law) from Him. And a Nabi was also
the messenger of Allah, but he was not given any new Shariat and followed the
shariat of earlier Rasul. Sheikh Mufid, a great scholar of Islam writes in his
book, Awail al-Maqalat, every messenger is a prophet [Nabi], but not
every Prophet is a Rasul [Apostle]. All Rasules were Nabi but all Nabis were not
A Prophet is always a Nabi by birth,
but a prophet become Rasul when he officially receives the post and declares it.
For example, our Prophet Muhammad (sws) was Nabi by birth, but became Rasul when
he officially got and delivered the message of Risalat at the age of 40.
The Rasul [Apostle] receives the message from Allah Taala in many different manners
such as, vision during sleep, direct communication with angels when he is awake.
i.e., he can see and speak to the angels during communication of Divine message.
But the Nabi [prophet] differs from the Rasul in that he does not see the angels
awake but sees during sleep.
is higher in rank than a Nabi.
Out of 25 Prophets
mentioned in the Holy Quran, or among 124000 Nabis, Five were Rasul, and are called
Ulu l-azm prophets, meaning those who possess a quality of determination and firmness.
five Rasuls and Ulul-azm Prophets are:
1 - Hazrat Nooh (as)
2 - Hazrat
3 - Hazrat Musa (as)
4 - Hazrat Isa (as)
5 - Hazrat Muhammad
Prophet Nooh(as) was given a Shariah
which was followed by other prophets up to the time of Hazrat Ibrahim(as).
Prophet Ibrahim(as) was given a Shariah which remained in force up to the
time of Hazrat Musa. i.e., Hazrat Yaqub, Hazrat Lut, Hazrat Yousuf (as) etc. followed
the Shariat of Ibrahim.
Prophet Musa(as) was
given a new Shariah which was followed by all the prophets of Bani Israel
until the time of Hazrat Isa (as).
Isa (as) was given a new Shariat which remained in force upto the time of the
Prophet Muhammad (sws) was given
the last and the most perfect Shariat which will remain in force up to the last
working day of the world.
The Shariat -e- Muhammadi
can never be changed as Prophet Muhammed (sws) is the last prophet and no prophet
will come after him. Our Prophet, Hazrat Muhammad (sws) has the highest position
and rank among all the Prophets.