Questions and Answers > Paradise > Salvation in Islam

Qur'an 23:12-13: are man and Adam two different entities?

Some Muslims claim with Qur’an 23:12-13 that Adam and man are different and that people today didn’t inherit the mistakes Adam did. What is the Qur’an telling us?

“And certainly did We create man from an extract of clay.” (Qur’an 23:12)
“Then We placed him as a sperm-drop in a firm lodging.” (Qur’an 23:13)

The Qur’an is telling us that Adam was the first human being, the first man. So Adam is part of man. The men and women after Adam inherited from Adam. Therefore Adam is very important for both the history of man and people today. The Qur’an confirms the Bible that Adam is the first man and the first human being (Qur’an 2:30, 38:71-72).

The Qur’an is saying that Adam was made from dust and that every human being is made from dust:

“O People, if you should be in doubt about the Resurrection, then [consider that] indeed, We created you from dust, then from a sperm-drop, then from a clinging clot, and then from a lump of flesh, formed and unformed - that We may show you.” (Qur’an 22:5)

See also Qur’an and 18:37, 23:12-13, 32:7-9, 38:71 and 40:67. Therefore the Qur’an is telling us that man and Adam in the Qur’an are one. The importance is that Adam and Eve introduced sin:

“And ‘O Adam, dwell, you and your wife, in Paradise and eat from wherever you will but do not approach this tree, lest you be among the wrongdoers’" (Qur’an 7:19).

Like Adam, man cannot refuse to commit sin. The sin of Adam and Eve was not immediate forgiven, because they had to leave Paradise. So all mankind was created from dust, but the exception is Jesus the Messiah; he was created in a different way according to the Qur’an. Jesus the Messiah was created by a Word of God, so he is heavenly (Qur’an 3:45). So, Jesus Christ is the example for mankind how to live:

“And We gave Jesus, the son of Mary, clear proofs and supported him with the Pure Spirit.” (Qur´an 2:87).

Because Jesus Christ is righteous (Qur’an 19:19) he is able to unite mankind with God by breaking the power of sin. That means that the result of sin with pain, suffering and death will be broken by faith in Jesus Christ. The clear proof is the resurrection of Jesus Christ. His resurrection is a sign (Qur’an 3:50) as evidence for the forgiveness of sin as mercy of God:

Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! (John 1:29).

Therefore the salvation of every man depends on the awareness that he inherited the sin of Adam and that Adam is part of man.