Do the words in 9:24 invite us to idolise the prophet?

Say, "If your parents, your children, your siblings, your spouses, your close relatives, the wealth which you have
acquired, a business you fear may decline and the homes you cherish are dearer to you than God and His messenger,
and striving in His cause, then just wait until God brings about His command." God does not guide the wicked people.

The words in 9:24 have been misinterpreted to claim that true believers should love prophet Muhammad more than their parents, children, siblings, spouses, wealth and property. The advocates of this understanding promote their twisted interpretation in order to uphold a couple of hadith found in Bukhari which say:

Narrated by Anas:
The prophet said "None of you will have faith till he loves me more than his father, his children and all mankind." (Bukhari, Volume 1, Book 2, Number 14)

And in another hadith we read:

Narrated 'Abdullah bin Hisham:
We were with the prophet and he was holding the hand of Umar bin Al-Khattab. Umar said to him, "O Allah's apostle! You are dearer to me than everything except my own self." The prophet said, "No, by Him in Whose Hand my soul is, (you will not have complete faith) till I am dearer to you than your own self." Then Umar said to him, "However, now, by Allah, you are dearer to me than my own self." The prophet said, "Now, O 'Umar, (you are a believer)."
(Bukhari, Volume 8, Book 78, Number 628)

It is bizarre for a start to entertain the outrageous idea that prophet Muhammad, the faithful servant of God, did not regard Umar a believer until after he declared that he loved him more than himself!
When we read 9:24, we note that God coupled the love of God and His messenger together. God is inviting the believers to love God and His messenger more than their parents, children, siblings, and virtually everything in their life.
The question here is how can God instruct us to love His messenger more than the whole world, which is nothing short of idol worship, when doing so would clearly violate the instructions in 2:165

Among the people are those who take other than God as equals, loving them as the love of God
. However, those who believe have much greater love for God. If only the transgressors would witness the punishment, they would realise that all power belongs to God alone and that God's punishment is severe. 2:165

The words in 2:165 confirm that our love of any human should never be comparable to the love of God. However, if we obey the command in 9:24, and love the messenger more than our parents, children, siblings, spouse, all our wealth and property, we would indeed elevate our love for the messenger to the level of idol worship.

Is this a contradiction we see between the words in 9:24 and those in 2:165? This cannot be since there are no contradictions in the Quran. The apparent contradiction is only a result of misunderstanding the words in 9:24.
Considering that God warned the believers not to love any human being as the love of God (2:165), then who exactly is the messenger spoken of in 9:24?

We know that the word 'messenger' has been used in the Quran to denote a human messenger, an angel messenger and also the Quran is spoken of in some verses as the messenger of God. The following are some examples:

A.L.R. A Book whose verses have been perfected, then detailed from One who is Wise, All-Aware.
"Do not worship except God. I (Quran) am a warner and bearer of news from Him to you. 11:1-2

O People of the Book, Our messenger (Quran) has come to you to clarify to you many issues that you were concealing in the Scripture, and to pardon many issues. A Light has come to you from God and a clear Book.
With it (Quran), God guides those who seek His consent to the paths of peace, and takes them out of darkness into the light with His permission, and guides them to a straight path. 5:15-16

The words "to pardon" in 5:15 tell us that the "messenger" spoken of in 5:15 and 5:16 is the Quran. The messenger in 5:15 cannot be a human messenger since no human being has the authority to pardon sins. The last words in the verse "a light" and "clear Book" confirm that the messenger is the Quran.

The messenger in 9:24 cannot be a human messenger, otherwise, 9:24 would contradict 2:165. Nor can the messenger in 9:24 be one of the angels of God for the same reasons. The only choice left is that the messenger in 9:24 is the Quran itself. As the Quran is the word of God, thus loving the word of God is in fact nothing other than loving God.
This correct understanding of the identity of the messenger in 9:24 is further confirmed in the following Quranic words:

Say (O Muhammad), "If you do love God, then follow me. God will then love you and forgive your sins. God is Forgiver, Merciful."

The word
"say" in the beginning of this verse addresses Muhammad since God commanded us to follow Muhammad who delivered the Quran to us. This is confirmed in other verses such as:
O you prophet, God is sufficient for you and for those who followed you of the believers. 8:64

3:31, God commanded Muhammad to say the words: "If you do love God, then follow me." From these words we derive the following:

It is very significant to our research of 9:24 that Muhammad is commanded to say "If you do love God" and not "if you love me". These deliberate words confirm that the messenger in 9:24 (whom we should love more than all people and all our property) cannot be Muhammad, nor any human being.

In addition, the words "then follow me" confirm that all the messenger is to ask from his followers is to follow him, or in other words, follow the message he brings to them. Note the difference between the Quranic words of "If you do love God, follow me" and the suggested incorrect understanding of 'If you love God, love me'!

To conclude, by studying the verses presented above, it becomes clear that the messenger spoken of in 9:24 is the Quran and not any human messenger. No messenger of God will ever ask the people to love him in any way as the love of God:

It is not for any human being to whom God gave the Scripture, the law, and the prophethood to then say to the people, "Be worshippers of me rather than God," but instead, "Be devoted to the Lord in accordance to the Scripture you have been teaching and in accordance to what you have been studying."