John the Baptist (Arabic Yahya ibn Zakariyya) Son of Zakariyya and Elizabeth and cousin of Jesus, John was born as a blessing from God when his parents were old and barren. As in the Bible, the Qur’an records God’s promise of a son to Zakariyya in response to his prayer for an heir. When Zakariyya asked for a sign, God struck Zakariyya dumb for three days. The Qur’an states that John served as a witness to the truth of Jesus’s teaching.
Jonah (Arabic Yunus) In the Qur’an, Jonah is a prophet who symbolises patience and perseverance. Jonah was swallowed by a fish when he tried to run away from God. According to tradition, he carried God’s message of impending punishment to the people of Nineveh, who then repented their sins and were saved.
Joseph (Arabic Yusuf) In the Qur’an, Joseph was the son of Jacob, an interpreter of dreams and a trusted adviser of the Pharaoh. He was sold into slavery by jealous brothers but forgave them and used his acquired position in Egypt to save them and his father from famine. He is used as an example of generosity, mercy, compassion and faith in God’s control over events in life.
ju’alal A price stipulated for performing a service. Because this is permissible in Islam, it has proved a useful way of building up a Shariah-compliant financial sector that avoids interest.
Judaism The oldest of the Abrahamic religions, dating back to roughly 500 bce. The followers of Judaism are called Jews, and they believe in the same God as Christians and Muslims, although unlike those two later religions, they do not believe that a messiah or messenger has yet come. The Jewish holy scripture, the Tanakh (which includes the Torah), is roughly equivalent to the Christian Old Testament and much of it also forms verses of the Qur’an, although interpretations differ in many parts.
ju’l, ji’alah A fee for services rendered.
Jumada al-Akhira The sixth month of the Islamic calendar.
Jumada al-Awal, Jumad-ul-Ula The fifth month of the Islamic calendar.
Jum’ah, Jumu’ah Friday, the Muslim holy day, when Salaatul Jumu’ah (Friday Prayers) take place.