The saying of the Elders that God’s speech is eternal means that God has been speaking of His free will from eternity, or to put it differently, His speech as a class is eternal None of them has ever said that a particular speech, whether the Qur’an or the Torah, is eternal; they have only said that it is uncreated.
The Elders have said, “The Qur’an is the word of God, revealed and uncreated.” They have also said, “God has been speaking from eternity whenever He has so willed.” They have made it quite clear that God’s word is eternal; that is to say, as a class His word is eternal. Nobody has ever said that any particular word is eternal, nor has anyone said that the Qur’an is eternal. They have only said that it is God’s speech, revealed and uncreated.
Since God has spoken the words of the Qur’an of His own free will, the Qur’an is His speech, it has come down from Him and is uncreated.
Nevertheless it is not eternal and timeless as God, even though He has been speaking from eternity as and when He has willed. Only His speech as a class is eternal.
Ahmad and other Elders have clearly stated that the Qur’an is the uncreated word of God. None of them has ever said that God has not spoken of His free will and power, nor has anyone said that a particular speech like the Qur’an, or the call that He gave to Moses, or any other particular speech is eternal and timeless, without a beginning and without an end, or that particular words or words and sounds are eternal and timeless, without a beginning or an end. No one has ever said any such thing, nor can anyone produce the word of Ahmad or any other imam in their support.
In fact, Ahmad’s statements and the statements of other imams are clearly against them. They have clearly said that God speaks of His free will and power, and that He has been speaking from eternity as and when He has willed.