So God tells Abraham that he will make Ishmael into a great nation.
Some nations, like China, are great without God having made a bilbical promise to anyone. When Abraham was promised that Ishmael was going to be great, was God promising to "pull strings" in Ishmael's favor to make him great? If so, what is the nature of the string pulling? Is the idea that God nudged Mohammed to create Islam and effect this great nation status compatible with Judaism?
Bereishit 17:20 "And regarding Ishmael, I have heard you; behold I have blessed him, and I will make him fruitful, and I will multiply him exceedingly; he will beget twelve princes, and I will make him into a great nation."