Muslims do not worship Muhammad in any way. They believe that he was the last messenger sent by Allah and like all His other prophets and messengers, he was a human being. However, some people mistakenly assume that Muslims worship Muhammad and this is one of the reasons that Muslims were erroneously called “Mohammedans”. Muhammad, like Jesus, never claimed divine status. He called people to worship Almighty Allah alone, and he continually emphasized his humanity. In order to prevent his deification, Prophet Muhammad always said to refer to him as “Allah’s slave and messenger”. He said:
Do not adulate me as the Christians adulated Jesus son of Mary. I am Allah’s slave and messenger (Bukhari)
Muhammad was chosen to be Allah’s final messenger and to communicate His message to us, not only in words, but also as a living example of its practical application. Muslims love and respect him because of his impeccable and upright moral character and because he conveyed the truth from Allah – which is the pure monotheism of Islam.
Muslims strive to follow the great example of Prophet Muhammad but do not worship him in any way. Islam teaches Muslims to respect all of Allah’s prophets and messengers. However, respecting and loving them does not mean worshipping them. Muslims know that all worship and prayer must be directed to Allah alone.
In fact, the worship of Muhammad – or anyone else – along with, or instead of, Almighty Allah is considered an unpardonable sin in Islam. Even if a person claims to be Muslim but worships or prays to anything other than God, it invalidates one’s claim to Islam. The Declaration of Faith makes it clear that Muslims must worship Allah alone.