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Stories of the Prophets

Written by Al-Imam ibn KathirTranslated by Muhammad Mustapha Geme’ah, Al-Azhar

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Contents

  1. Prophet Adam

  2. Prophet Idris (Enoch)

  3. Prophet Nuh (Noah)

  4. Prophet Hud

  5. Prophet Salih

  6. Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham)

  7. Prophet Isma’il (Ishmael)

  8. Prophet Ishaq (Isaac)

  9. Prophet Yaqub (Jacob)

  10. Prophet Lot (Lot)

  11. Prophet Shuaib

  12. Prophet Yusuf (Joseph)

  13. Prophet Ayoub (Job)

  14. 14 . Prophet Dhul-Kifl

  15. Prophet Yunus (Jonah)

  16. Prophet Musa (Moses) & Harun (Aaron)

  17. Prophet Hizqeel (Ezekiel)

  18. Prophet Elyas (Elisha)

  19. Prophet Shammil (Samuel)

  20. Prophet Dawud (David)

  21. Prophet Sulaiman (Soloman)

  22. Prophet Shia (Isaiah)

  23. Prophet Aramaya (Jeremiah)

  24. Prophet Daniel

  25. Prophet Uzair (Ezra)

  26. Prophet Zakariyah (Zechariah)

  27. Prophet Yahya (John)

  28. Prophet Isa (Jesus)

  29. Prophet Muhammad

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Description of Zakariyah

The years had taken their toll on the Prophet Zakariyah (pbuh). He was now old and bent with age, in his nineties. Despite his feebleness, he went to the temple daily to deliver his sermons. Zakariyah was not a rich man, but he was always ready to help those in need. His one disappointment in life was that he had no children, for his wife was barren. This worried him, for he feared there was no one after him to carry out his work. The people needed a strong leader, for it they were left on their own, they would move away from Allah’s teachings and change the Holy Laws to suit themselves.

Zakariyah Talks to Mary

During one of his visits to the temple, he went to check on Mary, who was living in a secluded room of the temple. He was surprised to find fresh out of season fruit in her room. Besides him, no one had entry to her room. When he inquired, she told him that the fruit was from Allah. She found it every morning. But why was he so surprised, she asked him. Did he not know that Allah provides without measure for whom He wills? This noble girl had opened this eyes to a startling idea. Could he not ask his Lord to bless him with a child in his old age? Even if his wife was past childbearing age, nothing was impossible for his Gracious Lord!

Zakariyah Asks for a Son – Quranic

Allah the Almighty revealed:

‘Kaf, Ha, Ya, Ain, Sad, (These letters are one of the miracles of the Quran, and none but Allah Alone knows their meanings). This is a mention of the Mercy of your Lord to His slave Zakariyah. When he called out his Lord (Allah) – a call in secret, saying: “My Lord! Indeed my bones have grown feeble, and gray hair has spread on my head, and I have never been unblest in my invocation to You, O my Lord! And Verily! I fear my relatives after me, since my wife is barren. So give me from Yourself an heir, – who shall inherit me, and inherit also the posterity of Jacob (inheritance of the religious knowledge and Prophethood, not the wealth, etc.) And make him, my Lord, one with whom You are Well-pleased!” Allah said: “O Zakariyah! Verily, We give you the glad tidings of a son. His name will be Yahya (John). We have given that name to none before him.” He said: “My Lord! How can I have a son, when my wife is barren, and I have reached the extreme old age.” He said: “So (it will be). Your Lord says, It is easy for Me. Certainly I have created you before, when you had been nothing.” Zakariyah said: “My Lord! Appoint for me a sign.” He said: “Your sign is that you shall not speak unto mankind for three nights, though having no bodily defect.” Then he came out to his people from Al Mihrab (a praying place or a private room, etc.), he told them by signs to glorify Allah’s Praises in the morning and in the afternoon. It was said to his son: “O John! Hold fast to the Scripture (The Torah).” And We gave him wisdom while yet a child, and made him sympathetic to men as a mercy or a grant from Us, and pure from sins (John) and he was righteous, and dutiful towards his parents, and he was neither an arrogant nor disobedient (to Allah or to his parents). And Salamun (peace) on him the day he was born, the day he dies, and the day he will be raised up to life again! (Ch 19:1-15 Quran)

Almighty Allah also said:

“At that time Zakariyah invoked his Lord, saying: “O my Lord! Grant me from You, a good offspring. You are indeed the All-Hearer of invocation.” Then the angels called him, while he was standing in prayer in Al- Mihrab ( a praying place or a private room), saying: “Allah gives you glad tidings of John confirming (believing in) the Word from Allah (“Be!” – and he was! (i.e. the creation of Isa (Jesus), son of Mariam (Mary), noble keeping away from sexual relations with women, a Prophet, from among the righteous.” He said: “O my Lord! How can I have a son when I am very old, and my wife is barren?” Allah said: “Thus Allah does what He wills.” He said: “O my Lord! Make a sign for me.” Allah said: “Your sign is that you shall not speak to mankind for three days except with signals. And remember your Lord much (by praising Him again and again), and glorify Him in the afternoon and in the morning.” (Ch 3:38-41 Quran).

Introduction to Joseph’s Story

This is the most detailed and fascinating story in the Quran, involving both human weaknesses such as jealousy, hatred, pride, passion, deception, intrigue, cruelty, and terror as well as noble qualities such as patience, loyalty, bravery, nobility, and compassion. It is related that among the reasons for its revelation is that the Jews asked the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) to tell them about Joseph (pbuh) who was one of their old prophets. His story had been distorted in parts and marred in others with interpolation and exclusions. Therefore it was revealed in the Book of Allah (Quran), complete in its minute and careful details.

Allah the Almighty declared:

“We relate unto you (Muhammad) the best of stories through Our Revelations unto you, of this Quran. And before this (i.e. before the coming of Divine Inspiration to you), you were among those who knew nothing about it (the Quran). ( Ch 12:3 Quran)

Almighty Allah also decreed:

“Thus We relate to you (O Muhammad) some information of what happened before, And indeed We have give you from Us a Reminder (this Quran). Whoever turns away from it (this Quran–i.e. does not believe in it, nor acts on its orders), verily they will bear a heavy burden (of sins) on the Day of Resurrection. They will abide in that (state in the Fire of Hell), and evil indeed will it be that load for them on the Day of Resurrection.(Ch 20:99-101)

The story of Joseph (pbuh) moves in a stream from beginning to end; its substance and form are equally coherent. It inspires you with a feeling for the depth of Allah’s power and supremacy and the execution of His rulings despite the challenge of human intervention.

“And Allah has full power and control over His Affairs, but most of men know not. (Ch 12:21)

This is what the story of Joseph (pbuh), confirms categorically, for it ends with comfort and marvels.

Summary of Joseph’s Story

Joseph lived all his life confronting schemes made by the people closest to him. His brothers plotted to kill him, but they amended it to exiling him. This happened to him while he was a boy. He was sold into the slave market in Egypt, where he was bought for a nominal sum. Then he fell victim to the attempted seduction by a great man’s wife who, when her wish was foiled, sent him to prison, where he remained for some time. In spite of all of this, he at length approached close to the Egyptian throne and became the king’s chief minister. He then began his call to Allah from the position of the ruling authority.

Allah’s plans were carried out, and the matter ended. This is the substance (theme) of the story. As for the form (style) in which it is presented, it is a landmark of wonder.

The Story’s Presentation

The story is presented in a sequence of episodes. It gives you scene after scene and the transition is inspiring, informative, and stirring to the imagination. There are also artistic loopholes, which leave it to the imagination of the reader to complete the sense, as well as the depth of the picture, the like of which no human artist can bring forth.

Joseph’s Childhood

The story begins with a dream and ends with its interpretation. As the sun appeared over the horizon, bathing the earth in its morning glory, Joseph (pbuh), son of the Prophet Jacob (pbuh) awoke from his sleep, delighted by a pleasant dream he had had. Filled with excitement he ran to his father and related it.

“O my father! Verily, I saw (in a dream) eleven stars and the sun and the moon, I saw them prostrating themselves to me.” (Ch 12:4)

His father’s face lit up. He foresaw that Joseph would be one through whom the prophecy of his grandfather, Prophet Abraham (pbuh), would be fulfilled, in that his offspring would keep the light of Abraham’s house alive and spread Allah’s message to mankind. Therefore, it was narrated that Allah’s Messenger Muhammad (pbuh) was asked: “Who is the most honorable amongst the people?” He replied: “The most God-fearing.” The people said: “We do not want to ask you about this.” He said: “The most honorable person is Joseph Allah’s prophet, the son of Allah’s prophet, the son of the faithful friend of Allah (Abraham).” (Sahih Al-Bukhari) However, the father was well aware of the jealousy of Joseph’s brothers, so he warned him against telling his dream to his brothers.

“O my son! Relate not your vision to your brothers, lest they arrange a plot against you. Verily! Satan is to man an open enemy! Thus will your Lord choose you and teach you the interpretation of dreams (an other things) and perfect His Favor on you and on the offspring of Jacob, as He perfected it on your fathers, Abraham, and Isaac aforetime! Verily! your Lord is All-Knowing, All-Wise.” (Ch 12:5-6)

Joseph heeded his father’s warning. He did not tell his brothers what he had seen. It is well known that they hated him so much that it was difficult for him to feel secure telling them what was in his heart and in his dreams.

Description of Joseph

Joseph was eighteen years old, very handsome and robust, with a gentle temperament. He was respectful, kind and considerate. His brother Benjamin was equally pleasant. Both were from one mother, Rachel. Because of their refined qualities, the father loved the two more than his other children, and would not let them out of his sight. To protect them, he kept them busy with work in the house garden.

The Evil Plot of Joseph’s Brothers

The scene of Jacob and his son closes. Another opens on Joseph’s brothers plotting against him.

“Truly, Joseph and his brother (Benjamin) are loved more by our father than we, but we are Usbah (a strong group). Really our father is in a plain error. Kill Joseph or cast him out to some other land, so that the favor of your father may be give to you alone, and after that you will be righteous folk (by intending repentance before committing the sin).” One from among them said: “Kill not Joseph, but if you must do something, throw him down to the bottom of a well, he will be picked up by some caravan of travelers.” (Ch 12:8-10)

The pages of the Old Testament say that Joseph told them his dream, whereas the Quran does not say that happened. Had it been so, the brothers would have said so themselves. The Old Testament claims they had lost their own rights by him, and so they would kill him. Indeed Joseph kept his father’s order and did not tell his brothers about his vision. In spite of this, his brothers sat down to conspire against him. One of them asked: “Why does our father love Joseph more than us?”

Another answered: “Perhaps because of his beauty.”

A third said: “Joseph and his brother occupied our father’s heart.”

The first complained: “Our father has gone all astray.”

One of them suggested a solution to the matter; kill Joseph.

“Where should we kill him?”

“We should banish him away from these grounds.”

“We will send him to a distant land.”

“Why should we not kill him and have rest so that the favor of your father may be give to you alone?”

However, Judah (Yahudh), the eldest and most intelligent among them, said: “There is no need to kill him when all you want is to get rid of him. Look here, let us throw him into a well and he will be picked up by a passing caravan. T hey will take him with them to a distant land. He will disappear from your father’s sight and our purpose will be served with his exile. Then after that we shall repent for our crime and become good people once again.”

The discussion continued on the idea of dropping Joseph into a well, as it was seen as the safest solution. The plan to kill him was defeated; kidnap into a distant land was approved. It was the cleverest of ideas.

The Brothers Approach Jacob

Their next movement opened the scene between them and their father Jacob (pbuh):

They said: “O our father! Why do you not trust us with Joseph, when we are indeed his well wishers? Send him with us tomorrow to enjoy himself and play, and verily we will take care of him.” He (Jacob) said: “Truly, it saddens me that you should take him away. I fear lest a wolf should devour him, while you are careless of him.” They said: “If a wolf devours him, while we are Usbah (a strong group) (to guard him), then surely we are the losers.” (Ch 12:11-14)

Jacob suggested a point, which had not occurred to them in their discussion: he feared that desert wolves would eat him! ithe wolves within them, or did he mean the wild wolves? No one but Allah knows. They coaxed their father to send Joseph with them; he agreed under their pressure.

Joseph Thrown into the Well

They were excited that they could now get rid of Joseph for after this they could stand a better chance of receiving their father’s affection. On leaving home, they went directly to the well, as they had planned, on the pretext of drinking water. One of them put his arms around Joseph and held him tightly. Startled by this unusual behavior, Joseph struggled to free himself. More brothers rushed to hold him. One of them removed his shirt. Some more joined in to lift Joseph up and cast him into the deep well. Joseph’s piteous pleas made no difference to their cruel hearts. Then Allah revealed to Joseph that he was safe and should not fear, for he would meet them again some day to remind them of what they had done. There was water in the well, which buoyed Joseph’s body, so he was not harmed. He sat lonely in the water, then clung to a rock ledge overheard and climbed on top of it. his brothers left him in this desolate place. Then they killed a sheep and soaked Joseph’s shirt in its blood. One brother said that they should swear to keep their deed a close secret. All of them took the oath.

The Brothers Lie to Jacob

“And they came to their father in the early part of the night weeping.” (Ch 12:16)

The scene here is dark night, broken by the crying of ten men. The father is sitting in his house when the sons enter, the darkness of night covering the darkness of their hearts and the darkness of their lies struggling to come out. Jacob wondered aloud: “Why this weeping? Has anything

happened to our flock?” They answered crying: “O our father! We went racing with one another, and left Joseph by our belongings and a wolf devoured him; but you will never believe us even when we speak the truth. (Ch 12:17)

“We were surprised after returning from the race that Joseph was in the belly of the wolf.”

“We did not see him!”

“You will not believe us even though we are truthful! we are telling you what happened!”

“The wolf has eaten Joseph!”

“This is Joseph’s shirt. We foiled it soiled with blood, and did not find Joseph!”

They brought his shirt stained with false blood. (Ch 12:18)

Deep down in the heart Jacob knew that his beloved son was still alive and that his other sons were lying. He held the blood stained in his hands, spread it out and remarked: “What a merciful wolf! he ate up my beloved son without tearing his shirt!” Their faces turned red when he demanded more information, but each swore by Allah that he was telling the truth. The brokenhearted father burst into tears:

“Nay! But your ownselves have made up a tale. So for me patience is more fitting. It is Allah Alone whose Help can be sought against that which you assert.” (Ch 12:18)

The father acted wisely by praying for mighty patience, which is free of doubt, and by trusting in Allah for help against what they had plotted against him and his son. This scene dims, and the scene opens in the well with which Joseph had been thrown.

Joseph Finds Comfort in Allah

In the dark well Joseph managed to find a stone ledge to hold onto. Around him was total darkness and an eerie silence. Fearful thoughts entered his mind: what would happen to him? Where would he find food? Why had his own brothers turned against him? Would his father know of his plight? His father’s smile flashed before him recalling the love and affection he had always shown him. Joseph began to pray earnestly, pleading to Allah for salvation. Gradually his fear began to subside. His Creator was testing the young man with a great misfortune in order to infuse in him a spirit of patience and courage. Joseph, surrended himself to the will of his Lord.

Joseph From the Well to Slavery

The next scene shows the wide desert. At the horizon is a long line of camels, horses, and men; a caravan on its way to Egypt. The caravan of merchants halted at this famous well for water. A man lowered in his bucket. Joseph was startled by the bucket hurtling down and grabbed hold of it before it could land in the water. As the man began to haul he felt the load unusually heavy, so he peeped into the well. What he saw shocked him; a man was clinging to the rope! He held the rope tightly and shouted to his friends: “Better give me a hand fellows! Looks like I found real treasure in the well!” His companions rushed to the well and helped him to pull out the stranger holding onto the rope. Standing before them was a healthy, handsome youth, beaming with an angelic smile. They saw in him a handsome prize, for money was all that mattered to them. Immediately, they clapped iron shackles on his feet and took him along to Egypt, far away from his beloved homeland of Canaan. All over the Egyptian city the news spread that an unusually handsome, robust young slave was on sale. People gathered by the hundreds at the slave market. some were spectators, others were bidders the elite and the rich, each one craning his neck to view the handsome specimen. the auctioneer had a field day as the bidding went wild, each buyer trying to outbid the other. Eventually, the Aziz, the chief minister of Egypt, outbid all the others and took Joseph to his mansion.

The Quran describes this scene as follows:

“And there came a caravan of travelers; they sent their water drawer, and he let down his bucket into the well. He said: “What a good news! Here is a boy.” So they hid him as merchandise (a slave). And Allah was the All Knower of what they did. They sold him for a low price, for a few Dhirhams (for a few silver coins). They were of those who regarded him insignificant. He (the man) from Egypt who bought him said to his wife: “Make his stay comfortable, may be he will profit us or we shall ado[t him as a son.” Thus did We establish Joseph in the land, that We might teach him the interpretation of events. (Ch 12:19-21) See how Allah the Almighty reveals the substance of this long story from its beginning: And Allah has full power and control over His Affairs, but most of men know not. (Ch 12:21)

The chains of slavery have closed on Joseph. He was cast into the well, deprived of his father, picked from the well, made a slave, sold at the market, and made the property of this man, the Aziz, the chief minister. The hazards followed in quick succession, leaving Joseph helpless.

Joseph’s Master

What we see as hazards and slander is the first step of the ladder on Joseph’s way to greatness. Allah is decisive in His action. His plan is carried out despite the plans of others and while theirs are still being made. So He spoils their plan, and Allah’s promise is realized. Allah has promise Joseph prophethood. Love for Joseph was thrust into the heart of the man who bought him, and he was a man of no mean position. He was an important personage, one of the ruling class of Egypt.

Therefore, Joseph was pleasantly surprised when the chief minister of Egypt ordered his men to remove the heavy shackles from his swollen feet. He was also surprised when he told Joseph not to betray his trust; he would not be ill-treated if he behaved himself. Joseph smiled at his benefactor, thanked him, and promised to be loyal.

Joseph felt at ease, for at last he was sheltered and would be well cared for. He thanked Allah over and over and wondered at the mysterious of life. Not so long ago he had been cast into a deep, dark well with no hope of ever coming out alive. Next he was rescued, then enslaved in iron shackles, and now he was moving freely in a luxurious mansion with enough food to enjoy. However, his heart ached with longing for his parents and brother Benjamin, and he shed tears daily.

Joseph was made the personal attendant of the chief minister’s wife. He was obedient and ever-obliging. With his pleasant manners and charming behavior, he won everybody’s heart. Joseph’s handsomeness became the talk of the town. People referred to him as the most attractive man they had ever seen and wrote poetry about him. His face carried immaculate beauty. The purity of his inner soul and his heart showed in his face, increasing his beauty. People from afar came to the city to have a glimpse of him. The prettiest of maidens and the richest of ladiesnursthe to possess him, but not once did he show haughtiness or conceit. he was always humble and polite.

Joseph’s Qualities

The days passed and Joseph grew. Almighty Allah said:

And when he (Joseph) attained his full manhood, We gave him wisdom and knowledge (the Prophethood), thus We reward the doers of good. (Ch 12:22)

He was given wisdom in affairs and knowledge of life and its conditions. He as given the art of conversation, captivating those who heard him. He was given nobility and self restraint, which made him an irresistible personality. His master soon knew that Allah had graced him with Joseph. He understood that Joseph was the most honest, straightforward and noble person he had met in his life. Therefore, he put Joseph in charge of his household, honored him, and treated him as a son.

Zulaikha’s Feelings for Joseph

The wife of the chief minister, Zulaikha, watched Joseph from day to day. She at with him, talked with him, listened to him, and her wonder increased over the passion of time.

Joseph was soon confronted (with his second trial). The chief minister’s wife, Zulaikha could not resist the handsome Joseph, and her obsession with him caused her sleepless nights. She fell in love with him, and it was painful for her to be so close to a man, yet be unable to hold him. Yet, she was not a wayward woman, for in her position she could get any man she desired. By all accounts, she must have been a very pretty and intelligent lady, or why would the chief minister have chosen her of all the pretty women in the kingdom? Although she bore him no child, he would not take another wife, as he loved her passionately.The Quran raises the curtain on the scene of this fierce and devouring love on the part of the lady. Allah the Almighty told us:

“And she, in whose house he was, sought to seduce him (to do an evil act), she closed the doors and said: “come on, O you.” He said: “I seek refuge in Allah (or Allah forbid)! Truly he (your husband) is my master! He made my stay agreeable! (So I will never betray him). Verily, the Zalimun (wrong, evildoers) will never be successful.” Indeed she did desire him and he would have inclined to her desire had he not seen the evidence of his Lord. Thus it was, that We might turn away from evil and illegal sexual intercourse. Surely, he was one of Our chosen, guided slaves. (Ch 12:23-24)

Joseph’s Feelings for Zulaikha

Commentators are unanimous about her intention of disobedience but disagree about his own intention. There are those who say that she tempted him and he tempted her to sin, although he did not follow through with his intent. Others say that she merely wanted him to kiss her, and he attempted to strike her. Yet others say that this anxiety had been there before this incident. There was a psychological disturbance in Joseph when he reached adolescence, which Almighty Allah rid him of.

The safest commentary for us is that there is temptation and resistance in the verse, for He Most High stated:

“And indeed she did desire him and he would have inclined to her desire… (Ch 12:24)

Abu Ubaidah said that this is a temptation and resistance meaning that she had tried to seduce him; had he not seen the proof of Allah, he would have been seduced. This is in keeping with the infallibility of prophets, as it suits the words, which immediately follow:

“Thus it was that We might turn away from him evil and illegal sexual intercourse. surely, he was one of Our chosen, guided slaves. (Ch 12:24)

This verse proves that Joseph was an upright worshipper of Allah; it also testifies to his rescue from the authority of Satan. The Almighty said to the devil (Iblis) on the Day of Creation:

“Certainly, you shall no authority over My slaves, except those who follow you of the Ghawin (Mushrikeen, and those who go astray, criminals, polytheists, and evildoers, etc)”(Ch 15:42)

Zulaikha’s False Accusation

Joseph’s refusal only heightened her passion. As he moved to the door to escape, she ran after himand caught hold of his shirt, like a drowning person clinging to the boat. In her tugging she torehis shirt and held the torn piece in her hand. They reached the door together. It opened suddenly,there stood her husband and a relative of hers.Almighty Allah said:

“So they raced with one another to the door, and she tore his shirt from the back. They both found her lord (her husband) at the door. (Ch 12:25)

As he opened the door, he saw her husband standing in front of him. The sly woman immediately changed her tone to anger, and, showing the torn piece of the shirt in her hand, asked her husband:

“What is the recompense (punishment) for him who intended an evil design against your wife, except that he be put in prison or a painful torment?” (Ch 12:25)

She was now accusing Joseph of molesting her, to give the impression that she was innocent and a victim of Joseph’s sexual desire. Though bewildered Joseph denied it:

“It was she that sought to seduce me.” (Ch 12:26)

The shirt was passed from hand to hand, while she watched. The witness (her cousin) looked at it and found that it was torn at the back. The evidence showed that she was guilty. The disappointed husband remarked to his wife: “Surely, it is a plot of you women! Certainly mighty is you plot!” (Ch 12:28)

The wise and just Aziz apologized to Joseph for his wife’s indecency. He also instructed her to beg Joseph’s forgiveness for accusing him falsely. Allah the Almighty narrated this incident thus:

He (Joseph) said:

“It was she that sought to seduce me,” and a witness of her household bore witness saying: “If itbe that his shirt is torn from the front, then her tale is true, and he is a liar! but if it be that hisshirt is torn from the back, then she has told a lie and he is speaking the truth!”So when he (the husband) saw his (Joseph’s) shirt was torn at the back; (her husband) said:”Surely, it is a plot of you women! certainly mighty is your plot! O Joseph! turn away from this!(O woman)! Ask forgiveness for your sin. Verily, you were of the sinful.”(Ch 12:26-29 Quran).

Zulaikha is Ridiculed by the People

An incident like this cannot remain a secret in a house filled with servants, and the story spread. Women began to see her behavior as scandalous. They remarked:

“The wife of Al-Aziz is seeking to seduce her (slave) young man, indeed she loves him violently; verily, we see her in plain error.” (Ch 12:30)

Zulaikha’s Plan to Regain Her Reputation

Naturally their gossip distressed Zulaikha. She honestly believed that it was not easy for any women to resist a man as handsome as Joseph. To prove her helplessness, she planned to subject the women to the same temptation she faced. She invited them to a lavish banquet. No one so invited would want to miss the honor of dining with the chief minister’s wife; besides, they secretly harbored the desire to meet the handsome Joseph face to face. Some of her close friends jokingly said they would come only if she introduced them to Joseph.

The invitation was restricted to ladies. The banquet began, laughter and mirth abounded. Etiquette dictated that the ladies not mention the topic of Joseph. They were shocked, therefore, when Zulaikha opened the topic. “I have heard of those who say I have fallen in love with the young Hebrew man, Joseph.” Silence fell upon the banquet. At once all the guests hands stopped, and all eyes fell on the chief minister’s wife. She said, while giving orders for the fruit to be served: “I admit that he is charming fellow. I do not deny that I love him. I have loved him for a long time.”

The Women’s Reaction to Joseph

The confession of the chief minister’s wife removed the tension among the ladies. After finishing their dinner, the guests began cutting their fruit. At that very moment she summoned Joseph to make his appearance. He entered the hall gracefully, his gaze lowered. Zulaikha called him by his name and he raised his head. The guests were astonished and dumbfounded. His face was shining and full of man angelic beauty. It reflected complete innocence, so much so that one could feel the peace of mind in the depth of his soul.

They exclaimed in astonishment while continuing to cut the fruit. All their eyes were on Joseph. So it was that the women began to cut their palms absent mindly without feeling that they had cut them.

The presence of Joseph at the scene of drama was so effective that blflowedwithouttheir feeling pain. One of the ladies gasped: “Good gracious!” Another whispered: “This is not a mortal being!” Another stammered, patting her hair: “This is but a noble angel.” Then the chief minister’s wife stood up and announced: “This is the one for whom I have been blamed. I do not deny that I tempted him. You have been enchanted by Joseph, and see what has happened to your hands. I have tempted him, and if he does not do what I want of him he shall be imprisoned.”

The Women’s Reaction – Quranic

Almighty Allah related the scene of the banquet in His words:

“So when she heard of their accusation,she sent for them and prepared a banquet for them; she gave each one of them a knife (to cut thefoodstuff with), and she said (to Joseph): “Come out before them.” Then, when they saw him,they exalted him (at his beauty) and (in their astonishment) cut their hands. They said: “howperfect is Allah (or Allah forbid)! No man is this! This is none other than a noble angel!”

She said: “This is he (the young man) about whom you did blame me (for his love) and I did seekto seduce him, but he refused. And now if he refuses to obey my order, he shall certainly be castinto prison, and will be one of those who are disgraced.”

He said: “O my Lord! Prison is more to my liking than that to which they invite me. Unless Youturn away their plot from me, I will feel inclined towards them and be one of those who commitsin and deserve blame or those who do deeds of the ignorants.”So his Lord answered his inovocation and turned away from him their plot. Verily he is the AllHearer, the All Knower.” (Ch 12:31-34)

That evening, Zulaikha convinced her husband that the only way to save her honor was to put Joseph in prison; otherwise she would not be able to control herself or to safeguard his prestige. The chief minister knew Joseph was absolutely innocent, that he was a young man of honor, a loyal servant, and he loved him for these reasons. It was not an easy decision for him to put an innocent man behind bars. However, he was left with no choice. He reasoned that Joseph’s honor would also be safeguarded if he was kept out of Zulaikha’s sight. That night, with a heavy heart, the chief minister sent Joseph to prison.

Joseph’s Time in Prison

Prison was Joseph’s third test. During this period Allah blessed him with an extraordinary gift; the ability to interpret dreams. At about the same time two other men landed in the prison. One was the cupbearer of the king; the other was the king’s cook. The two men sensed that Joseph was not a common criminal, for an aura of piety glowed on his face. Both men had vivid dreams, and they were anxious to have them explained. The king’s cook dreamed that he stood in a place with bread on his head, and two birds were eating the bread. The cupbearer dreamed that he was serving the king wine. The two went to Joseph and told him their dreams, asking him to give them their meaning.

First, Joseph called them to Allah. Then he said that the cook would be crucified until he died and that the cupbearer would return to the service of the king. Joseph told the cupbearer to remember him to the king and to say that there was a wronged soul called Joseph in prison. What Joseph predicted did happen; the cook was crucified and the cupbearer returned to the palace.

After the cupbearer returned to service, Satan made him forget to mention Joseph’s name to the king. Therefore, Joseph remained in prison for a few years, but he made patience his own, praying to Allah.

Joseph’s Time in Prison – Quranic

Almighty Allah narrated:

“And there entered with him two young men in the prison. One of them said: “Verily, I saw myself (in a dream) pressing wine.” The other said: “Verily, I saw myself (in a dream) carrying bread on my head and birds were eating thereof.” They said: Inform us of the interpretation of this. Verily, we think you are one of those Muhsineen (doers of good).” He said: “No food will come to you (in wakefulness or in dream) as your provision but I will inform (in wakefulness) its interpretation before it (the food) comes. This is of that which my Lord has taught me. Verily, I have abandoned the religion of a people that believe not in Allah and are disbeliveers in the Hereafter. And I have followed the religion of my fathers, – Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and never could we attribute any partners whatsoever to Allah. This is from the Grace of Allah to us and to mankind, but most men think not (i.e. they neither believe in Allah nor worship Him). “O two companions of the prison! Are many different lords (gods) better or Allah, the One, the Irresistible? You do not worship besides Him but only names which you have named (forged), you and your fathers, for which Allah has sent down no authority. The command (or the judgment) is for none but Allah. He has commanded (His Monotheism), that is the true, straight religion, but most men know not. “O two companions of the prison! As for one of you, he (as a servant) will pour out wine for his lord (King or master) to drink; and as for the other, he will be crucified and birds will eat from his head. Thus is the case judged concerning which you both did inquire.” And he said to the one whom he knew to be saved: “Mention me to your lord (your King, so to get me out of the prison).” But Satan made him forget to mention it to his lord (or Satan made Joseph to forget the remembrance of his Lord (Allah) as to ask for His Help, instead of others). So Joseph stayed in prison a few more years. (Ch 12:36-42).

The King’s Dream

The scene in the prison closes; a new scene opens in the bedchamber of the king. The king isasleep. He sees himself on the banks of the Nile river. The water is receding before him, becomingmere mud. The fish begin to skip and jump in the mud. Seven fat cows come out of the riverfollowed by seven lean cows. The seven lean ones devour the seven fat ones. The king is terrified.The seven ears of green grain grow on the riverbanks and disappear in the mud. One the samespot grow seven dray ears of grain.The king awoke frightened, shocked, and depressed, not knowing what all this meant. He sent forthe sorcerers, priests and ministers, and told them his dream.The sorcerers said: “This is a mixed up dream. How can any of that be? It is a nightmare.”The priests said: “Perhaps his majesty had a heavy supper.”The chief minister said: “Could it be that his majesty was exposed and did not draw the blanket upat night?”The king’s jester said, jokingly: “His majesty is beginning to grow old, and so his dreams areconfused.”They reached an unanimous conclusion that it was only a nightmare.The news reached the cupbearer. He recollected the dream he had in prison and compared it tothe king’s dream, and, therefore Joseph came to mind. He ran to the king to tell him about Joseph,who was the only one capable to interpreting the dream. The cupbearer said : “He had asked meto remember him to you, but I forgot.” The king sent the cupbearer to ask Joseph about thedream.

Joseph’s Interpretation of the Dream

Joseph interpreted it to him: “There will be seven years of abundance. If the land is properly cultivated, there will be an excess of good harvest, more than the people will need. This should be stored. Thereafter, seven years of famine will follow, during which time the excess grain could be used.” He also advised that during the famine they should save some grain to be used for seed for the next harvest. Joseph then added; “After seven years of drought, there will be a year during which water will be plentiful. If the water is properly used, grapevines and olive trees will grow in abundance, providing plenty of grapes and olive oil.” The cupbearer hurried back with the good news. The king was fascinated by Joseph’s interpretation.

The Dream and Interpretation – Quranic

Almighty Allah narrated this incident thus:

“And the king of Egypt said: “Verily, I saw in a dream seven fat cows, whom seven lean cows were devouring, and seven green ears of corn and seven others dry. O notables! Explain to me my dream if it be that you can interpret dreams.” They said: “Mixed up false dreams and we are not skilled in the interpretation of dreams.” Then the man who was released (one of the two who were in prison), now at length remembered and said: “I will tell you its interpretation, so send me forth.” (He said): “O Joseph, the man of truth! Explain to us (the dream) of seven fat cows whom seven lean ones were devouring, and of seven green ears of corn and seven others dry, that I may return to the people, and that they may know.” Joseph said: “For seven consecutive years, you shall sow as usual and that the harvest which you reap you shall leave in ears, all –except a little of it which you may eat. Then will come after that seven hard years, which will devour what you have laid by in advance for them, all except a little of that which you have guarded (stored). Then thereafter will come a year in which people will have abundant rain and in which they will press wine and oil.” (Ch 12:43-49)

Joseph’s Innocence Proved

The king was greatly astonished. Who could this person be? He commanded that Joseph be set free from prison and presented to him at once. The king’s envoy went to fetch him immediately, but Joseph refused to leave the prison unless his innocence was proven. Perhaps they accused him of cutting the ladies hands, or trying to rape them. Perhaps any other false accusation was made. We do not know exactly what was said to the people to justify Joseph’s sentence to prison. The envoy returned to the king. The king asked him: “Where is Joseph? Did I not command you to fetch him?”

The envoy replied: “He refused to leave until his innocence is established regarding the ladies who cut their hands.”

The king ordered: “Bring the wives of the ministers and the wife of the chief minister at once.” The king felt that Joseph had been harmed unfairly but he did not know exactly how. The wife of the chief minister came with the other ministers’ wives. The king asked: “What is the story of Joseph? What do you know about him? Is it true that…?”

One of the ladies interrupted the king exclaiming: “Allah forbid!”

A second said: “We know of no evil he has done.”

A third said: “He enjoys the innocence of angels.”

The eyes of everyone turned to the wife of the chief minister. She now wore a wrinkled face and had lost weight. She had been overwhelmed by sorrow over Joseph while he was in prison. She boldly confessed that she had lied and he had told the truth.

“I tempted him; but he refused.” She confirmed what she said, not out of fear of the king or the other ladies, but for Joseph to know that she had never betrayed him during his absence, for he was still in her mind and soul. Of all creation he was the only one she cared for, so she confirmed his innocence before all.

Joseph’s Innocence Proved – Quranic

Almighty Allah said: And the king said: “Bring him to me.” But, when the messenger came to him (Joseph) said: “Return to your lord, and ask him, ‘what happened to the women who cut their hands? Surely, my Lord (Allah) is Well Aware of their plot.” (The king) said (to the women): “What was your affair when you did seek to seduce Joseph?” The women said: “Allah forbid! No evil know we against him!” The wife of Al Aziz said: “Now the truth is manifest to all, it was I who sought to seduce him and he is surely one of the truthful.” (Then Joseph said: “I asked for this inquiry) in order that he (Al-Aziz) may know that I betrayed him not in secret. And, verily! Allah guides not the plot of the betrayers. And I free not myself (from the blame). Verily, the human self is inclined to evil, except when my Lord bestows His Mercy (upon whom He wills). Verily, my Lord is Oft-Forgiving, most Merciful.” (Ch 12:50-53).

Zulaikha’s Life Afterwards

Reflecting on these verses suggests that she had turned to Joseph’s religion, monotheism. His imprisonment was a great turning point in her life. After this, the Quranic style neglects the story of the chief minister’s wife completely. We do not know what happened to her after she gave her clear evidence. Yet still, there are legends about her. It has been said that after her husband died she married Joseph, and, behold she was a virgin. She confessed that her husband had been old and had never touched women. Other legends said that she lost her sight, weeping for Joseph. She abandoned her palace and wandered in the streets of the city. However, the lady disappeared from the Quranic narrative at the suitable stage, at the climax of her trouble. Perhaps she lingers in memory longer than if we had known the ending.

Joseph’s High Position

The king informed Joseph that his innocence was established and ordered him to come to the palace for an interview. The king recognized his noble qualities. When Joseph came, the king spoke to him in his tongue. Joseph’s replies astonished the king with his cultural refinement and wide knowledge. Then the conversation turned to the dream. Joseph advised the king to start planning for years of famine ahead. He informed him that the famine would affect not only Egypt but the neighboring countries as well. The king offered him a high position. Joseph asked to be made controller of the granaries, so that he could guard the nation’s harvest and thereby safeguard it during the anticipated drought. By this Joseph did not mean to seize an opportunity or personal gain; he merely wanted to rescue hungry nations for a personal gain; he merely wanted to rescue hungry nations for a period of seven years. It was a sheer nobleness on his part in that he wanted to ensure that many people would not die as a result.

Joseph’s High Position – Quranic

Almighty Allah said:”And the king said: “Bring him to me that I may attach him to my person.” Then, when he spoketo him, he said: “Verily, this day, you are with us high in rank and full trusted.”Joseph said: “Set me over the store houses of the land; I will indeed guard them with fullknowledge.” (as a minister of finance in Egypt, in place of Al-Aziz who was dead at that time). Thus did We give full authority to Joseph in the land, to take possession therein, as when orwhere he likes. We bestow of Our Mercy on whom We please, and We make not to be lost thereward of Al Muhsineen (the good-doers). (Ch 12:54-57).

Joseph Meets His Brothers

The wheels of time turned. During the seven good years, Joseph had full control over the cultivation, harvesting, and storage of crops. During the following seven years, drought followed and famine spread throughout the region, including Canaan, the homeland of Joseph. Joseph advised the king that as his kingdom was blessed with reserved grain, he should sell his grain to the needy nations at a fair price. The king agreed, and the good news spread all over the region.

Jacob sent ten of his sons, all except Benjamin, to Egypt to purchase provisions. Joseph heard of the ten brothers who had come from afar and who could not speak the language of the Egyptians. When they called on him to purchase their needs, Joseph immediately recognized his brothers, but they did not know him. How could they? To them Joseph no longer existed; he had been thrown into the deep, dark well many years ago!

Joseph received them warmly. After supplying them with provisions, he asked where they had come from. They explained: “We are eleven brothers, the children of a noble prophet. The youngest is at home tending to the needs of our aging father.”

On hearing this, Joseph’s eyes filled with tears; his longing for home swelled up in his heart, as well as his longing for his beloved parents and his loving brother Benjamin. “Are you truthful people?” Joseph asked them.

Perturbed they replied, “What reason should we have to state an untruth?”

“If what you say is true then bring your brother as proof and I will reward you with double rations. But if you do not bring him to me, it would be better if you do not return,” Joseph warned them.

They assured him that they would gladly fulfill his command but that they would have to get their father’s permission. As an inducement to return with their brother, Joseph ordered his servant to secretly place the purse, with the money they had paid, into one of their grain sacks.

Joseph Meets His Brothers – Quranic

Allah the Almighty said:

“And Joseph’s brethren came and they entered unto him, and he recognized them, but they recognized him not. And when he had furnished them forth with provisions (according to their need), he said: “Bring me a brother of yours from your father; (he meant Benjamin). See you not that I give full measure, and that I am the best of the hosts? But if you bring him onto me, there shall be no measure of corn for you with me, nor shall you come near me.” They said: “We shall try to get permission for him from his father, and verily, we shall do it.” And (Joseph) told his servants to put their money (with which they had bought the corn) into their bags, so that they might know it when they go back to their people, in order that they might come back. (Ch 12:58-62)

The Brothers Return to Canaan

The scene dims in Egypt and lights in Canaan. The brothers returned to their father. Before they could unload the camels, they greeted him, then reproved him: “We were denied some supplies because you did not let your son go with us. They would not give us food for absentees. Why would you not entrust him with us? Please, send him with us, and we shall take care of him.” Jacob became sad and told them: “I will not permit Benjamin to travel with you. I will not part with him, for I entrusted Joseph to you and you failed me.” Later, when they opened their grain sacks, they were surprised to find the money purse returned intact. They rushed to their father; “Look, father! The noble official has returned our money; this is surely proof that he would not harm our brother and it can only benefit us.” But Jacob refused to send Benjamin with them. After some time, when they had no more grain, Jacob asked them to travel to Egypt for more. They reminded him of the warning the Egyptian official had given them. They could not return without Benjamin. Jacob agreed, but not before he extracted a pledge from them. “I will not send him with you unless you give me a pledge in Allah’s name that you shall bring him back to me as safely as you take him.” They gave their solemn pledge. He reminded them: “Allah is witness to your pledge.” He then advised them to enter the city through several different gates.

The Brothers Return to Canaan – Quranic

Almighty Allah narrated:

“So when they returned to their father, they said: “O our father! No more measure of grain shall we get (unless we take our brother). So send our brother with us, and we shall get our measure and truly we will guard him.” He said: “Can I entrust him to you except as I entrust his brother (Joseph) to you aforetime? But Allah is the best to guard, and He is the Most Merciful of those Who show mercy.” And when thopened their bags, they found their money had been returned to them. They said: “O our father! What more can we desire? This, our money has been returned to us, so we shall get more food for our family, and we shall guard our brother and add one more measure of a

camel’s load. This quantity is easy (for the king to give).”He (Jacob) said: “I will not send him with you until you swear a solemn oath to me in Allah’sName, that you will bring him back to me unless you are yourselves surrounded (by enemies,etc). And when they had sworn their solemn oath, he said: “Allah is the Witness over what wehave said.”And he said: “O my sons! Do not enter by one gate, but by different gates, and I cannot availyou against Allah at all. Verily! The decision rests only with Allah. In Him, I put my trust and letall those that trust, put their trust in Him.” (Ch 12:63-67 Quran).

Jacob blessed them on their departure and prayed to Allah for their protection. The brothers undertook the long journey to Egypt, taking good care of Benjamin. Joseph and Benjamin Meet

Joseph welcomed them heartily, although, with difficulty, he suppressed the desire to embrace Benjamin that arose within him. He prepared a feast for them and seated them in pairs. Joseph arranged to sit next to his beloved brother Benjamin, who began to weep. Joseph asked him why he was crying. He replied: “If my brother Joseph had been here, I would have sat next to him.” That night, when Joseph and Benjamin were alone in a room, Joseph asked whether he would have him for a brother. Benjamin respectfully answered that he regarded his host as a wonderful person, but he could never take the place of his brother. Joseph broke down, and amidst flowing tears said; “My loving brother, I am the brother who was lost and whose name you are constantly repeating. Fate has brought us together after many years of separation. This is Allah’s favor. But let it be a secret between us for the time being.” Benjamin flung his arms around Joseph and both brothers shed tears of joy.

A Thief Among the Brothers

The next day, while their bags were being filled with grains to load onto the camels, Joseph ordered one of his attendants to place the king’s gold cup which was used for measuring the grain into Benjamin’s saddlebag. When the brothers were ready to set out, the gates were locked, and the court crier shouted: “O you travelers, you are thieves!” The accusation was most unusual, and the people gathered around Joseph’s brothers.

“What have you lost?” his brothers inquired.

A soldier said: “The king’s golden cup. Whoever can trace it we will give a beast load of grain.”

Joseph’s brothers said with all innocence: “We have not come here to corrupt the land and steal.”

Joseph’s officers said (as he had instructed them): What punishment should you choose for the thief?”

The brothers answered: “According to our law, whoever steals becomes a slave to the owner of the property.”

The officers agreed: “We shall apply your law instead of the Egyptian law, which provides for imprisonment.”

The chief officer ordered his soldiers to start searching the caravan. Joseph was watching the incident from high upon his throne. He had given instructions for Benjamin’s bag to be the last to be searched. When they did not find the cup in the bags of the ten older brothers, the brothers sighed in relief.

Benjamin is Accused

There remained only the bag of their youngest brother. Joseph said, intervening for the first time, that there was no need to search his saddle as he did not look like a thief. His brothers affirmed: “We will not move an inch unless his saddle is searched as well. We are the sons of a noble man, not thieves.” The soldiers reached in their hands and pulled out the king’s cup. The brothers exclaimed: “If he steals now, a brother of his has stolen before.” They strayed from the present issue in order to blame a particular group of the children of Jacob. Joseph heard their resentment with his own ears and was filled with regret. Yet, he swallowed his own resentment, keeping it within. He said to himself, “you went further and fared worse; it shall go bad with you and worse hereafter, and Allah knows your intention.” Silence fell upon them after these remarks by the brothers. Then they forgot their secret satisfaction and thought of Jacob; they had taken an oath with him that they would not betray his son. They began to beg Joseph for mercy. “Joseph, O minister! Take one of us instead. He is the son of a good man, and we can see you are a good man.” Joseph answered calmly: “How can you want to set free the man who has stolen the king’s cup? It would be sinful.” The brothers went on pleading for mercy. However, the guards said that the king had spoke and his word was law. Judah, the eldest, was much worried and told the others: “We promised our father in the name of Allah not to fail him. I will, therefore, stay behind and will only return if my father permits me to do so.”

Joseph Meets Benjamin and the Accusation – Quranic

Regarding this scene, Almighty Allah said:

“And when they entered according to their father’s advice, it did not avail them in the least against (the Will of ) Allah, it was but a need of Jacob’s inner self which he discharged. And verily, he was endowed with knowledge because We had taught him, but most men know not. And when they went in before Joseph, he betook his brother (Benjamin) to himself and said: “Verily! I am your brother, so grieve not for what they used to do.” So when he had furnished them forth with their provisions, he put the golden bowl in his brother’s bag. Then a crier cried: “O you in the caravan! Surely, you are thieves!” They, turning towards them said: “What is that you have missed?” They said: “We have missed the golden bowl of the king and for him who produces it is the reward of a camel load; I will be bound by it.”

They said: “By Allah! Indeed you know that we came not to make mischief in the land, and we are no thieves!” They (Joseph’s brothers) said: “The penalty should be that he, in whose bag it is found, should be held for the punishment of the crime. Thus we punish the Zalimeen (wrongdoers, etc)!” So he (Joseph) began the search in their bags before the bag of his brother. Then he brought it out of his brother’s bag. Thus did We plan for Joseph. He could not take his brother by the law of the king (as a slave), except that Allah willed it. So Allah made the brothers to bind themselves with their way of ‘punishment, i.e. enslaving of a thief.’ We raise to degrees whom We please, but over all those endowed with knowledge is the All-Knowing (Allah). They (Joseph’s brothers) said: “If he steals, there was a brother of his (Joseph) who did steal before him.” But these things did Joseph keep in himself, revealing not the secrets to them. He said (within himself): “You are in the worst case, and Allah knows best the truth of what you assert!” They said : “O ruler of the land! Verily, he has an old father who will grieve for him, so take one of us in his place. Indeed we think that you are one of the good doers.” He said: “Allah forbid! That we should take anyone but him with whom we found our property. Indeed if we did so, we shall be Zalimun (wrongdoers).” So, when they despaired of him, they held a conference in private. The eldest among them said: “Know you not that your father did take an oath from you in Allah’s name, and before this did fail in your duty with Joseph? Therefore, I will not leave this land until my father permits me, or Allah decides my case (by releasing Benjamin) and He is the Best of the judges.” (Ch 12:68-80 Quran).

Joseph’s Plan

The brothers left enough provisions behind for Judah, who stayed at a tavern awaiting the fate of Benjamin. In the meantime, Joseph kept Benjamin in his house as his personal guest and told him how he had devised the plot to put the king’s cup in his bag, in order to keep him behind, so as to protect him. He was also glad that Judah had stayed behind, as he was a good hearted brother. Joseph secretly arranged to watch over Judah’s well being. Joseph’s plan in sending the others back was to test their sincerity, to see if they would come back for the two brothers they had left behind.

The Brothers Confront Jacob

When they arrived home, they entered upon their father calling: “O our father! Your son hasstolen!”He was puzzled, scarcely believing the news. He was overwhelmed with sorrow and his eyes wepttears. “Patience be with me; perhaps Allah will return all of them to me. He is Most Knowing,Most Wise.” A pal of lonesomeness closed over him, yet he found consolation in patience andtrusted in Allah.

The Brothers Confront Jacob – Quranic

Allah revealed to us what happened at their meeting with their father:

“Return to your father and say: ‘O our father! Verily, your son (Benjamin) has stolen, and we testify not except according to what we know, and we could not known the unseen! And ask the people of the town where we have been, and the caravan in which we returned and indeed we are telling the truth.”” He (Jacob) said: “Nay, but your ownselves have beguiled you into something. So patience is most fitting for me. Maybe Allah will bring them back all to me. Truly He! Only He is All-Knowing, All-Wise.” And he turned away from them and said: “Alas, my grief for Joseph!” And he lost his sight because of the sorrow that he was suppressing. (Ch 12:81-84)

Jacob’s Request to Find Joseph

The father was deeply hurt. Only prayer could comfort him and strengthen his faith and patience.Weeping all those years for his beloved son Joseph – and now one more of his best sons had beensnatched from him – Jacob almost lost his sight.The other sons pleaded with him: “O father, you are a noble prophet and a great messenger ofAllah. Unto you descended revelation and people received guidance and faith from you. Why areyou destroying yourself in this way?”Jacob replied: “Rebuking me will not lessen my grief. Only the return of my sons will comfort me.My sons, go in search of Joseph and his brother; do not despair of Allah’s mercy.”

Jacob’s Request to Find Joseph – Quranic

Allah, the Almighty told us:

“They said: “By Allah! You will never cease remembering Joseph until you become weak with oldage, or until you be of the dead.”He said: “I only complain of my grief and sorrow to Allah, and I know from Allah that which youknow not. O my sons! Go you and inquire about Joseph and his brother and never give up hopeof Allah’s Mercy. Certainly no one despairs of Allah’s Mercy, except the people who disbelieve.”(Ch 12:85-87 Quran).

Joseph Reveals Himself

The caravan set out for Egypt. The brothers – on their way to see the chief minister (Joseph) were poor and depressed. On reaching Egypt they collected Judah and called on Joseph, to whom they pleaded:

“O ruler of the land! A hard time has hit us and our family, and we have brought but poor capital, so pay us full measure and be charitable to us. Truly, Allah does reward the charitable.” (Ch 12:88).

At the end, they begged Joseph. They asked alms of him, appealing to his heart, reminding him that Allah rewards alms givers. At this moment, in the midst of their plight, Joseph spoke to them in their native tongue saying:

“Do you know what you did with Joseph and his brother when you were ignorant?”They said: “Are you indeed Joseph?”He said: “I am Joseph, and his is my brother (Benjamin). Allah has indeed been Gracious to us.Verily, he who fears Allah with obedience to Him (by abstaining from sins and evil deeds, and byperforming righteous good deeds), and is patient, then surely, Allah makes not the reward of thegood doers to be lost.”They said: “By Allah! Indeed Allah has preferred you above us, and we certainly have beensinners.” (Ch 12:89-91)

The brothers began to tremble with fear, but Joseph comforted them:

“No reproach on you this day, may Allah forgive you, and He is the Most Merciful of those who show mercy!” (Ch 12:92)

Jacob Learns About Joseph

Joseph embraced them, and together they wept with joy. It was not possible for Joseph to leave his responsible office without proper replacement, so he advised his brothers:

“Go with this shirt of mine, and cast it over the face of my father, he will become clear-sighted, and bring to me all your family.” (ch 12:93)

And so the caravan headed back for Palestine. We lave the scene in Egypt and return to Palestine and the house of Jacob. The old man is sitting in his room; tears have been flowing down his cheeks. He stands up all of a sudden, dresses and goes out to his son’s wives. Then he lifts up his face to Heaven and sniffs the air.

The wife of the eldest son remarked: “Jacob has come out of his room today.” The women inquired about what was amiss. There was a hint of a smile on his face. The others asked him:

“How do you feel today?”

He answered: “I can smell Joseph in the air.”

The wives left him alone, saying to one another that there was no hope for the old man. ‘he will die of weeping over Joseph.’

“Did he talk about Joseph’s shirt?”

“I do not know. He said he could smell him; perhaps he has gone mad.”

That day the old man wanted a cup of milk to break his fast, for he had been fasting. At night he changed his clothes. The caravan was traveling in the desert with Joseph’s shirt hidden among the grain. It neared the old man’s estate. He gesticulated in his room, and then he prayed a long time, lifting his hands to heaven and sniffing the air. He was weeping as the shirt was nearing him.

And when the caravan departed, their father said: “I do indeed feel the smell of Joseph, if onlyyou think me not a dotard (a person who has weakness of mind because of old age).”They said: “By Allah! Certainly, you are in your old error.”Then, when the bearer of the glad tidings arrived, he cast the shirt over his face, and he becameclear sighted. He said: “Did I not say to you, I know from Allah that which you know not.””They said: “O our father! Ask Forgiveness from Allah for our sins, indeed we have beensinners.” (Ch 12:94-97)

Jacob and Joseph (PBUT) Meet

The story began with a dream and it ends with the interpretation of the dream. Almighty Allah narrated:

He said: “I will ask my Lord for forgiveness for you, verily, He! Only He is the Oft-Forgiving, the Most Merciful.”

Then, when they entered unto Joseph, he betook his parents to himself and said: “Enter Egypt, if Allah will, in security.”

And he raised his parents to the throne and they fell down before him prostrate. And he said: “O my father! This is the interpretation of my dream of old! My Lord has made it come true! He was indeed good to me, when He took me out of prison, and brought you all here out of the Bedouin life, after Satan had sown enmity between me and my brothers. Certainly, my Lord is the Most Courteous and Kind unto whom He will. Truly He! Only He is the All Knowing, the All-Wise.” (Ch 12:98-100)

Epilogue

Consider his feelings now that his dream has come true. He prays to Allah:

“My Lord! You have indeed bestowed on me of the sovereignty, and taught me the interpretation of my dreams; The only Creator of the heavens and the earth! You are my Wali (Protector, Helper, Supporter, Guardian etc). in this world and in the Hereafter, cause me to die as a Muslim (the one submitting to Your Will), and join me with the righteous.” (Ch 12:101)

Joseph arranged an audience with the king for himself and his family, to ask the king’s permission for them to settle in Egypt. Joseph was an assert to the kingdom, and the king was happy to have him remain with his household. Joseph prostrated to Allah in gratitude.

The Deatb of Jacob and Joseph (PBUT)

Before he died, Jacob (pbuh) advised his children to adhere to the teachings of Islam, the religion of all of Allah’s prophets. Allah the Almighty revealed:

“Or were you witnesses when death approached Jacob? When he said unto his sons: “What will you worship after me?” they said: “We shall worship your Ilah (God-Allah) the Ilah (God) of your father. Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, One Ilah (God), and to Him we submit in Islam.” (Ch 12:133 Quran).

Joseph (pbuh), at the moment of his death, asked his brothers to bury him beside his forefathers if they were to leave Egypt. So when Joseph (pbuh) passed away, he was mummified and placed in a coffin until such a time as he could be taken out of Egypt and buried beside his forefathers, as he had requested. It was said that he died at the age of one hundred ten.

Description of Jonah’s People

Prophet Jonah (Yunus) (pbuh) also known as Dhan-Nun. About his people Almighty Allah said:

Was there any town community that believed after seeing the punishment, and its Faith at that moment, saved it from the punishment? (the answer is none)–except the people of Jonah; when they believed, We removed from them the torment of disgrace in the life of the present world, and permitted them to enjoy for a while. (Ch 10:98 Quran)

The inhabitants of the town of Nineveh were idolaters who lived a shameless life. Prophet Jonah (pbuh) was sent to teach them the worship of Allah. The people disliked his interference in their way of worship, so they argued. “We and our forefathers have worshipped these gods for many years and no harm has come to us.”

Jonah Leaves His People

Try as he might to convince them of the foolishness of idolatry and of the goodness of Allah’s laws, the ignored him. He warned them that if they kept on with their foolishness, Allah’s punishment would soon follow. Instead of fearing Allah, they told Jonah that they were not afraid of his threats. “Let it happen,” they told him. Jonah was disheartened. “in that case, I will leave you to your misery!” so saying, he left Nineveh, fearing that Allah’s anger would soon follow.

“Remember Dhan Nun (Jonah), when he went off in anger, and imagined that We shall not punish him (the calamities which had befallen him)! (ch 21:87)

The People are Forgiven

Hardly had he left the city when the skies began to change color and looked as if they were on fire. The people were filled with fear by this sight. They recalled the destruction of the people of ‘Ad, Thamud and Noah. Was theirs to be a similar fate? Slowly faith penetrated their hearts. They all gathered on the mountain and started to beseech Allah for His mercy and forgiveness. The mountains echoed with their cries. It was a momentous hour, filled with sincere repentance. Allah removed His wrath and showered His blessings upon them once again. When the threatening storm was lifted, they prayed for the return of Jonah so that he could guide them.

The Storm at Sea

Meanwhile, Jonah had boarded a small ship in the company of other passengers. It sailed all day in

calm waters with a good wind blowing at the sails. When night came, the sea suddenly changed. Ahorrible storm blew as if it were going to split the ship into pieces. The waves looked wild. Theyrose up as high as mountains then plunged down like valleys, tossing the ship and sweeping overthe deck.Behind the ship, a large whale was splitting the water and opening its mouth. A command hadbeen issued from Almighty Allah to one of the greatest whales of the sea to surface. It obeyed.The whale hurried to the surface of the sea and followed the ship as it had been commanded.The tempest continued and the chief crewman asked the crew to lighten the ship’s heavy load.They threw their baggage overboard, but this was not enough. Their safety lay in reducing theweight further, so they decided among themselves to lighten their load by removing at least one person.

Jonah Jumps into the Sea

The captain directed: We will make lots with all of the travelers’ names. The one whose name is drawn will be thrown into the sea.” Jonah knew this was one of the seamen’s traditions when facing a tempest. It was a strange polytheistic tradition, but it was practiced at that time. Jonah’s affliction and crisis began. Here was the prophet, subjected to polytheistic rules that considered the sea and the wind to have gods that riot. The captain had to please these gods. Jonah reluctantly participated in the lot, and his name was added to the other travelers’ names. The lot was drawn and “Jonah” appeared. Since they knew him to be the most honorable among them, they did not wish to throw him into the angry sea. Therefore, they decided to draw a second lot. Again Jonah’s name was drawn. They gave him a final chance and drew a third lot. Unfortunately for Jonah, his name came up again. Jonah realized that Allah’s hand was in all this, for he had abandoned his mission without Allah’s consent. The matter was over, and it was decided that Jonah should throw himself into the water. Jonah stood at the edge of the ship looking at the furious sea. It was night and there was no moon. The stars were hidden behind a black fog. But before he could be thrown overboard, Jonah kept mentioning Allah’s name as he jumped into the raging sea and disappeared beneath the huge waves.

The Whale Swallows Jonah

The whale found Jonah floating on the waves before it. It swallowed Jonah into its furious stomach and shut its ivory teeth on him as if they were white bolts locking the door of his prison. The whale dived to the bottom of the sea, the sea that runs in the abyss of darkness. Three layers of darkness enveloped him, one above the other; the darkness of the whale’s stomach, the darkness of the bottom of the sea, the darkness of the night. Jonah imaged himself to be dead, but his senses became alert when he found he could move. He knew that he was alive and imprisoned in the midst of three layers of darkness. His heart was moved by remembering Allah. His tongue released soon after saying:

” La ilaha illa Anta (none has the right to be worshipped but You (O Allah), Glorified (and Exalted) be You (above all that evil they associate with You), Truly, I have been of the wrong doers.” (Ch 21:87 Quran)

Jonah continued praying to Allah, repeating this invocation. Fishes, whales, seaweeds, and all the creatures that lived in the sea heard the voice of Jonah praying, heard the celebration of Allah’s praises issuing from the whale’s stomach. All these creatures gathered around the whale and began to celebrate the praises of Allah in their turn, each in its own way and in its own language. The whale also participated in celebrating the praises of Allah and understood that it had swallowed a prophet. Therefore it felt afraid; however, it said to itself; “Why should I be afraid? Allah commanded me to swallow him.”

Allah Forgives Jonah

Allah Almighty saw the sincere repentance of Jonah and heard his invocation in the whale’s stomach. Allah commanded the whale to surface and eject Jonah onto an island. The whale obeyed and swam to the farthest side of the ocean. Allah commanded it to rise towards the warm, refreshing sun and the pleasant earth. The whale ejected Jonah onto a remote island. His body was inflamed because of the acids inside the whale’s stomach. He was ill, and when the sun rose, its ray burned his inflamed body so that he was on the verge of screaming for the pain. However, he endured the pain and continued to repeat his invocation to Allah. Almighty Allah caused a vine to grow to considerable length over him for protection. Then Allah Exalted caused Jonah to recover and forgave him. Allah told Jonah that if it had not been for his praying to Him, he would have stayed in the whale’s stomach till the Day of Judgment.

Summary of Jonah’s Story

Almighty Allah recounted:

” And, verily, Jonah was one of the Messengers. When he ran to the laden ship, he agreed to cast lots and he was among the losers, Then a big fish swallowed him and he had done an act worthy of blame. Had he not been of them who glorify Allah, he would have indeed remained inside its belly (the fish) till the Day of Resurrection. But We cast him forth on the naked shore while he was sick and We caused a plant of gourd to grow over him. And We sent him to a hundred thousand people or even more, and they believed; so We gave them enjoyment for a while. (Ch 37:139-148 Quran).

Jonah’s People – Changed

Gradually he regained his strength and found his way to his hometown, Nineveh. He was pleasantly surprised to notice the change that had taken place there. The entire population turned out to welcome him. They informed him that they had turned to believe in Allah. Together they led a prayer of thanksgiving to their Merciful Lord.

Prophet Muhammad’s PBUH Saying About Jonah (PBUT)

Ibn Abbas narrated: “The Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) said: ‘One should not say I am better than Jonah Ibn Matta.'” (Sahih Bukhari).

Isaac’s Sons – Jacob and Esau

Isaac married Rebekah Bint Bethuel, Ibn Nahor, and she gave birth to a set of twins, Esau (Al Eis) and Jacob (Yaqub). Ill feelings developed between the two brothers when they grew into manhood. Esau disliked the fact that Jacob was favored by his father and by Allah with prophethood. This ill feeling became so serious that Esau threatened to kill his brother. Fearing for his life, Jacob fled the country.

Isaac’s Sons – from the People of the Book

The People of the Book said that when Isaac was forty years old, he married Rebekah, Bint Bethuel, during his father’s life. They said she was sterile, so Isaac prayed to Allah and then she became pregnant. She gave birth to twin boys. The first one was called Esau whom the Arabs called Al-Eis. He became the father of Rum. The second one was called Jacob, which means Isreal, (belonging to the people of Israel).

The People of the Book claimed that when Isaac (pbuh) grew old and his eye sight had weakened, he had a desire for food, so he asked his son Esau to go hunting and bring him some cooked game. Esau asked him to bless the food and pray for him. Esau, a hunter, went out to get his father the meat. Rebekah, overhearing this, ordered her son Jacob to slaughter two goats of his best flock and cook them as his father liked and bring it to him before his brother returned. She dressed Jacob in his brother’s clothes and put goat skin on his arms and neck, for Esau was hairy while Jacob was not. When he approached his father with the food, his father asked: ‘Who are you?’ Jacob answered: ‘I am your son.’ When his father finished eating, he prayed for his son to be the more blessed brother and to prevail over them and all people, and for Allah to sustain him and his children.

When he left his father, his brother Esau, who had carried out his father’s command, entered. Isaac asked him: “What is this my son?” He answered: “This is the food you like.” Isaac asked: “Did you bring it an hour ago and ask me to pray for you?” Esau said: “No, I swear I did not,” and he knew his brother had preceded him in this matter and he was sick at heart.

Jacob Leaves his Home – from the People of the Book

The People of the Book said Esau threatened to kill his brother when their father was dead. They also said that he asked his father to pray for him that Allah make the earth good for his offspring and multiply his sustenance and fruits.

When their mother knew that Esau threatened his brother Jacob, she commanded her son Jacob to go to her brother Laban in the land of Haran and abide with him for a time until his brother’s anger had abated, and to marry one of the Laban’s daughters. She told her husband Isaac to command him with that advice and pray for him, and he did.

Jacob’s Promise

Jacob (pbuh) left his family, when night came he found a place to rest. He took a stone and put it under his head and slept. He dreamed of a ladder from heaven to earth. Angels were ascending and descending and the Lord addressed him and said to him; “I will bless you and your offspring and make this land for you and for those who come after you.”

When he awoke he felt joyful from what he had seen in his dream and vowed, for Allah’s sake that if he returned to his family safely, he would build here a temple for Allah the Almighty. He also vowed to give one tenth of his property for the sake of Allah. He poured oil on the stone so as to recognize it and called the place “Ayle’s House” (Bethel), which means “House of Allah”. It was to be the location of Jerusalem later.

Jacob’s Wives – from the People of the Book

The People of the Book also said that when Jacob came to his maternal uncle in the land of Haran, his uncle had two daughters. The elder one was called Leah (Lia) and the younger one was Rachel (Rahil). The latter was the better and lovelier of the two. His uncle agreed to marry his daughter to him on the condition that Jacob pasture his sheep for seven years. After a period of time, his uncle prepared a feast and gathered people for the wedding. He married Leah, his elder daughter, to him at night. She was weak-sighted and ugly. When morning came, Jacob discovered she was Leah and he complained to his uncle. “You deceived me; I was engaged to Rachel and you married me to Leah.” His uncle said: “It is not our tradition to marry the younger daughter before the elder daughter. However, if you love her sister, work another seven years and I will marry you to both of them.” Jacob worked for seven years and then married Rachel. It was acceptable in their time, as described in the Torah, for a man to marry two sisters. Laban gave a female slave to each daughter. Leah’s slave was called Zilpah and Rachel’s slave was called Bilha.

Jacob’s Children – from the People of the Book

Almighty Allah compensated Leah’s weakness by giving her sons. The first one was named Rueben (Robel), after whom there were Simon (Shamun), Levi (Lawi), and Judah (Yahudh). Rachel felt jealous of Leah’s having sons, as she was barren. She gave her slave Bilha to her husband and he had relations with her until she became pregnant. She gave birth to a son and named him Naphtali. Leah was vexed that Rachel’s slave had give birth to a son, so she in turn gave her slave Zilpah to Jacob (pbuh), Zilpah gave birth to two sons, Gad and Asher. Then Leah got pregnant and gave birth to her fifth son, Issaacher, and later she gave birth to a sixth son Zebulun. After this Leah gave birth to a daughter named Dinah. Thus, Leah had seven sons from Jacob.

Then Rachel prayed to Allah to give her a son from Jacob. Allah heard her call and responded to her prayer. She gave birth to a son, great, honorable, and beautiful. She named him Joseph (Yusuf). All of this happened when they were in the land of Haran and Jacob (pbuh) was pasturing his uncle’s sheep, which he did for a period of twenty years.

Jacob’s Request – from the People of the Book

Jacob then asked his uncle Laban to let him go and visit his family. His uncle said to him: “I have been blessed because of you; ask for whatever money you need.” Jacob said: “Give me each spotted and speckled goat born this year and each black lamb.”

But at Laban’s command his sons removed their father’s goat that were striped, spotted or speckled, and the black lambs, lest others should be born with those traits. They walked for three days with their father’s goats and sheep while Jacob tended the remaining flock. The People of the Book said that Jacob (pbuh) took fresh rods of poplar, almond, and plane. He peeled streaks in them and cast them into the water through for the goats to look at. The young inside their abdomens were terrified and moved and they were born striped, spotted or speckled. When the sheep were breeding, he set their faces towards the black sheep in Laban’s flock and put the rods among them. Their lambs were born black. This was considered an example of supernatural powers, a miracle. Jacob had many goats, sheep, beast and slaves. His uncle and his sons faces changed as if they the sheep and goats had been stolen from them.

Jacob Accused of Taking Idols

Allah the Almighty inspired Jacob to return to the country of his father and people, and He promised to stand by him. Jacob told his family that, and they responded and obeyed him. Jacob did not tell Laban of his plans, however, and left without bidding farewell.

Upon leaving, Rachel stole her father’s idols. After Jacob and his people had fled for his country, Laban and his people followed them. When Laban met with Jacob, he blamed him for leaving him without his knowledge. He would have liked to know so that he could have made them leave with celebration and joy, with drums and songs, and so that he could have bidden his daughters and sons farewell. And why have they taken his idols with them?

Jacob had no knowledge of his idols, so he denied that he had taken them from him. Then Laban entered the tents of his daughters and slaves to search, but he found nothing, for Rachel had put the idols in the camel saddle under her. She did not get up, apologizing that she had her menses. Thus, he could not perceive what they had done. Then they sat on a hill called Galeed and made a covenant there. Jacob would not ill treat Laban’s daughters nor marry others. Neither Laban nor Jacob would pass the hill into the other’s country. They cooked food and their people ate with them. Each bade the other farewell as they departed, each returning to his own country.

Jacob Prepares to meet Esau

When Jacob approached the land of Seir, the angels greeted him. He sent a messenger ahead with greetings to his brother Esau, asking forgiveness and humbling himself before him. The messenger returned greetings and told Jacob that Esau was riding towards him with four hundred men. This made Jacob afraid and he entreated and prayed to Allah Almighty. He prostrated in humiliation and asked Him to fulfill His promise which He had made before. He asked Him to stop the evil of his brother Esau. Then Jacob (pbuh) prepared a great present for his brother: two hundred female goats and twenty male goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, and thirty milch camels, forty cows and two bulls, twenty female donkeys and ten male donkeys. He commanded his slaves to take the animals, each drove by itself, and pass on ahead of him with a space between the droves. He instructed them: “When you meet my brother Esau he will ask you, ‘to whom do you belong? where are you going?’ you shall say, ‘they belong to your servant Jacob; they are a present to my master Esau. Moreover, he is behind us.”

Jacob stayed behind with his two wives, his slaves and his children for two nights, then continued walking by night and resting by day.

Jacob becomes Israel

When the dawn of the second day came one of the angels appeared in the shape of a man. Jacob began to wrestle with him. They were neck and neck until the angel injured his thigh and Jacob became lame. When the day was breaking, the angel said to him: ‘What is your name?’ He answered: ‘Jacob.’ The angel said: “After today you shall not be called anything but Israel.” Jacob asked: “Who are you? What is your name?” He vanished. Then Jacob knew that he was one of the angels. Jacob was lame, and for this reason the children of Israel do not eat the thigh muscle on the hip socket.

Jacob and Esau Meet

Jacob raised his eyes and saw his brother Esau coming. Jacob prostrated seven times before him for it was their salutation in that time. It was lawful for them just as the angels had prostration in salutation to Adam.

When Esau saw him, he ran towards him, embraced and kissed him and wept. When Esau raised his eyes and saw the women and children he asked: “Who are these with you?” Jacob answered: “Those whom Allah has given me, your servant.” Leah, Rachel, their slaves, and all the children approached and prostrated before him. Jacob asked Esau to accept his gift and insisted until he did so. Esau returned and went in advance before him. Jacob and his family followed with the flocks and herds and slaves to the mountains (Seir).

Jacob Builds Ayl

When he came to Succoth (Sahur), he built a house for himself and shades for his beasts. Then he passed by Jerusalem, the village of Shechem, and camped before the village. He bought a farm from Shcehm Ibn Hamor with one hundred goats and built an altar, which he called Ayl, as Allah commanded him. He built the altar where Jerusalem stands today and later Solomon son of David (pbuh) rebuilt it. It is in the place of the stone which he had earlier anointed with oil as was mentioned before.

Dinah’s Story – from the People of the Book

The people of the book tell a story of Dinah, daughter of Jacob and Leah. Shechem Ibn Hamor seized her and lay with her by force. Then he asked her father and brothers to let him marry her. Her brothers said : “Circumcise all of you, and we will give our daughters to you, and we will take your daughters for ourselves; but we do not marry with uncircumcised people.” They (the men of the city) agreed to that, and all of them were circumcised. When the third day came, the pain from the circumcision had increased, Jacob’s sons approached and killed them till the last one. They killed Shchem and his father for the evil they had committed against them and for their worship of idols. That is why Jacob’s sons killed them and seized their money as spoils.

Rachel’s Death

Then Rachel got pregnant and gave birth to a son, Benjamin, but she had a hard labor and died after delivery. Jacob buried her in Ephrath (afrath). The tomb of Rachel is there till the present day.

The Sons of Jacob

Jacob’s sons were twelve men. From Leah there were Rueben (Robil), Simon (Shamun), Levi (Lawi), Judah (Yahudh), Issachar (Isakher), and Zebulun (Zablun). From Rachel there were Joseph (Yusuf) (pbuh) and Benjamin. From Rachel’s slave there were Dan and Naphtali (Neftali), and from Leah’s slave there were Gad and Asher.

Isaac’s Death

Jacob came to his father Isaac and settled with him in the village of Hebron which lies in the land of Canaan where Abraham had lived. Then Isaac fell ill and died when he was one hundred eighty years old. his sons Esau and Jacob buried him with his father Abraham Al Khalil in a cave which he had bought. It was said that Abraham died at the age of one hundred seventy five.

The Prophet’s last Wish

Allah the Almighty declared in the Glorious Quran:

“And who turns away from the religion of Abraham (Islamic Monotheism) except him who befools himself? Truly, We chose him in this world and verily, in the Hereafter he will be among the righteous. When his Lord said to him: “Submit (be a Muslim)!” He said: “I have submitted myself (as a Muslim) to the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn and all that exists).” And this (submission to Allah, Islam) was enjoined by Abraham upon his sons and by Jacob, (saying): “O my sons! Allah has chosen for you the true religion, then die not except in the Faith of Islam (as Muslims — Islamic Monotheism).” Or were you witnesses when death approached Jacob? When he said unto his sons: “What will you worship after me?” They said: “We shall worship you (Ilah (God – Allah) the Ilah (God) of your fathers, Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, One Ilah (God), and to Him we submit (in Islam).”

That was a nation who had passed away. They shall receive the reward of what they earned and you of what you earn. And you will not be asked of what they used to do.

Quran’s Way of Confronting People of the Book

They say: “Be Jews or Christians, and then you will be guided.” Say (to them O Muhammad): “Nay (we follow) only the religion of Abraham, Hanifan (Islamic monotheism, i.e. to worship none but Allah Alone, and he was not of the Al Mushrikeen (those who worshipped others along with Allah).”

Say (O Muslims): “We believe in Allah and that which has been sent down to us and that which had been sent down to Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob and to Al Asbat (the twelve sons of Jacob), and that which has been given to Moses and Jesus and that which has been given to the Prophets from their Lord. We make no distinction between any of them, and to Him we have submitted (in Islam).”

So if they believe in the like of that which you believe, then they are rightly guided, but if they turn away, then they are only in opposition. So, Allah, will suffice you against them. He is the All Hearer, the All Knower.

(Our Sibghah, religion is) the Sibghah (religion) of Allah (Islam) and which Sibghah (religion) can be better than Allah’s. We are His worshippers.

Say (O Muhammad, to the Jews and Christians): “Dispute you with us about Allah while He is our Lord and your Lord? And we are to be rewarded for our deeds and you for your deeds. We are sincere to Him in worship and obedience (i.e., we worship Him Alone and none else, and we obey His Orders).” Or say you that Abraham, Ishmael, Isaac, Jacob, and Al Asbat (the twelve sons of Jacob) were Jews or Christians? Say: “Do you know better or does Allah know better….that they all were Muslims? And who is more unjust than he who conceals the testimony (to believe in the Prophet Muhammad, when he comes written in their books) he has from Allah? Allah is not unaware of what you do.“(Ch 2:130-140 Quran)

In another surah Almighty Allah declared:

“O People of the Scripture (Jews and Christians)! Why do you dispute about Abraham, while the Torah and the Gospel were not revealed till after him? Have you then no sense? Verily, you are those who have disputed about that of which you have no knowledge. Why do then dispute concerning that which you have no knowledge? It is Allah Who knows, and you know not.

Abraham was neither a Jew nor a Christian, but he was a true Muslim Hanifan (Islamic Monotheism), to worship none but Allah Alone and he was not of the polytheists (he joined none in worship with Allah).

Verily, among mankind who have the best claim to Abraham are those who followed him, and this Prophet (Muhammad) and those who have believed (Muslims). And Allah is the Wali (Protector and Helper) of the believers.(Ch 3:65-68 Quran) Allah the Exalted also affirmed:

” Then verily! Your Lord for those who do evil (commit sins and are disobedient to Allah) in ignorance and afterward repent and do righteous deeds, verily, your Lord thereafter to such is Oft Forgiving, Most Merciful.

Verily, Abraham was an Ummah (a leader having all the good righteous qualities or a nation), obedient to Allah, Hanifan (to worship none but Allah), and he was not one of those who were Al Mushrikeen (polytheists, idolaters, disbeliveers in the Oneness of Allah and those who joined partners with Allah). He was thankful for His (Allah’s) Graces. He (Allah) chose him (as an intimate friend) and guided him to a Straight Path (Islamic Monotheism, neither Judaism or Christianity). We gave him good in this world and in the Hereafter he shall be of the righteous. Then, We have inspired you (O Muhammad saying): “Follow the religion of Abraham Hanifan (Islamic Monotheism to worship none but Allah) and he was not of the Mushrikeen (polytheists, pagans, idolaters, disbeliveers in the Oneness of Allah and His Messenger Muhammad, those who worship others along with Allah or set up rivals with or partners to Allah).” (Ch 16:119-123 Quran)

John’s Childhood

John (pbuh) was born a stranger to the world of children who used to amuse themselves, as he was serious all the time. Most children took delight in torturing animals whereas, he was merciful to them. He fed the animals from his food until there was nothing left for him, and he just ate fruit or leaves of trees. John loved reading since childhood. When he grew up, Allah the Exalted called upon him:

“O John! Hold fast to the Scripture (The Torah).” And We gave him wisdom while yet a child. (Ch 19:12 Quran).

John’s Qualities

Allah guided him to read the Book of Jurisprudence closely; thus, he became the wisest and most knowledgeable man of that time. Therefore, Allah the Almighty endowed him with the faculties of passing judgments on people’s affairs, interpreting the secrets of religion, guiding people to the right path, and warning them against the wrong one. John reached maturity. His compassion for his parents, as well as for all people and all creatures, increased greatly. He called people to repent their sins. There are quite a number of traditions told about John. Ibn Asaker related that one time his parents were looking for him and found him at the Jordan River. When they met him, they wept sorely, seeing his great devotion to Allah, Great and Majestic. Ibn Wahb said that, according to Malik, grass was the food of John Ibn Zakariyah, and he wept sorely in fear of Allah. A chain of narrators reported that Idris Al Khawlawi said: “Shall I not tell you he who had the best food? It is John Ibn Zakariyah, who joined the beasts at dinner, fearing to mix with men.”

Why John Always Wept

Ibn Mubarak stated that Wahb Ibn Al-Ward narrated that Zakariayah did not see his son for three days. He found him weeping inside a grave which he had dug and in which he resided. “My son, I have been searching for you, and you are dwelling in this grave weeping!” “O father, did you not tell me that between Paradise and Hell is only a span, and it will not be crossed except by tears of weepers?” He said to him: “Weep then, my son.” Then they wept together. Other narrations say that John (pbuh) said: “The dwellers of Paradise are sleepless out of the sweetness of Allah’s bounty; that is why the faithful must be sleepless because of Allah’s love in their hearts. How far between the two luxuries, how far between them?” They say John wept so much that tears marked his cheeks.

John’s Love of Nature

He found comfort in the open and never cared about food. He ate leaves, herbs, and sometimes locusts. He slept anywhere in the mountains or in holes in the ground. He sometimes would find a lion or a bear as he entered a cave, but being deeply absorbed in praising Allah, he never heeded them. The beasts easily recognized John as the prophet who cared for all the creatures, so they would leave the cave, bowing their heads. John sometimes fed those beasts, out of mercy, from his food and was satisfied with prayers as food for his soul. He would spend the night crying and praising Allah for His blessings. When John called people to worship Allah, he made them cry out of love and submission, arresting their hearts with the truthfulness of his words. A conflict took place between John and the authorities at that time. A tyrant king, Herod Antipas, the ruler of Palestine, was in love with Salome, his brother’s daughter. He was planning to marry his beautiful niece. The marriage was encouraged by her mother and by some of the learned men of Zion, either out of fear or to gain favor with the ruler. On hearing the ruler’s plan, John pronounced that such a marriage would be incestuous. He would not approve it under any circumstance, as it was against the Law of the Torah.

John’s Cruel Death

John’s pronouncement spread like wildfire. Salome was angry, for it was her ambition to rule the kingdom with her uncle. She plotted to achieve her aim. Dressing attractively, she sang and danced before her uncle. Her arousing Herod’s lust. Embracing her, he offered to fulfill whatever she desired. At once she told him: “I would love to have the head of John, because he has defiled your honor and mine throughout the land. If you grant me this wish, I shall be very happy and will offer myself to you.” Bewitched by her charm, he submitted to her monstrous request. John was executed and his head was brought to Salome. The cruel woman gloated with delight. But the death of Allah’s beloved prophet was avenged. Not only she, but all the children of Israel were severely punished by invading armies which destroyed their kingdom.

Ezra Sleeps For 100 Years

Ishaaq Ibn Bishr reported, on the authority of Ibn’ Abbas and others, that Ezra was a saint and a wise man. He went out one day to his own farm, as was his custom. About noon he came to a deserted, ruined place and felt the heat. He entered the ruined town and dismounted his donkey, taking figs and grapes in his basket. He went under the shade of the khaiba tree and ate his food. Then he got up to look at what remained of the ruins. The people had long been lost, and he saw bones.

“Oh! How will Allah ever bring it to life after its death?” (Ch 2:259 Quran)

He said this not out of doubt but out of curiosity. Allah sent the Angel of Death to take his life. He remained dead for one hundred years.

After one hundred years had passed and there had been changes in Israelite affairs, Allah sent an angel upon Ezra to revive his heart and his eyes in order for him to feel and see how Allah revives the dead. The angel said: “For how long did you sleep?” He said: “A day or part of a day.” He said this because he knew he had slept early in the afternoon and woke up late in the afternoon. The angel said: “You remained asleep for one hundred years.” He ate and drank the food which he had prepared before he was overtaken by that long sleep. Then the angel revived his donkey.

Almighty Allah said:

“And look at your donkey! Thus We have made of you a sign for the people. Look at the bones, how We bring them together and clothe them with flesh.” When this was clearly shown to him he said: “I know now that Allah is able to do all things.” (Ch 2:259)

Ezra Returns Home

He rode on his donkey and entered his native place, but the people did not recognize him, nor did his household, except the maid, now an old woman. He asked her: “Is this the house of Ezra?” She said: “Yes, but the people have long forgotten Ezra.” He said: “I am Ezra, Allah had taken my life for a one hundred years and has now returned it to me.” She said: “Ezra used to be answered when he prayed to Allah. Pray to cure me of blindness if you are Ezra.” He prayed for her and massaged her eyes and took her by the hand. “Get up by the power of Allah,” he said. The crippled woman stood up and walked; she opened her eyes and saw; her blindness was gone. She said: “I bear witness that you are Ezra.”

Ezra Finds and Copies the Torah

She rushed to the assembly of the Israelites. Ezra’s son was one hundred eighteen years old, and his children ‘s children now were lords of the assembly. She called out to them saying: “This is Ezra come to you.” They accused her of lying. She said: “I am your old maid. He has just prayed to Allah for me, and here I am whole again, walking and seeing.” The people stood up and looked at him. His son said: “My father had a mark between his shoulders, a black mole,” and they discovered it. They said: “None among us memorized the Torah since Nabuchadnezzar burned it, except Ezra; and there was only one copy of the Torah, which was hidden by Sarukha. He buried it in the days of Nabuchadnezzar in a place none but Ezra knows.” Ezra led the people to the hidden place and took out that copy of the Torah. Its leaves had rotted, and the book itself crumpled.

Ezra sat under the shade of a tree surrounded by the children of Israel and copied out the Torah for them from that script. Henceforth, the Jews said that Ezra is the son of Allah, for two evidences which came down from Heaven and for his copying the torah and for his fighting the cause of the Israelites.He had been copying the Torah for Ezekial in the land of darkness in the hermitage of Ezekiel. The village which was in ruins is said to be Sayrabadh. Ibn Abbas commanded: “So it is as Allah said:

“We have made of you a sign for the people.” (Ch 2:259)

That is, for the Israelites, in that he was sitting among his children, the old men, and he a youth. He died as a forty year old, and Allah resurrected him at the same age on the day of his death.”

Shuaib’s Message

Allah the Almighty revealed the story of Shu’aib (pbuh):

“To the people of Madyan (Madian) (We sent) their brother Shu’aib. He said: “O my people! Worship Allah, you have no other Ilah (God) but Him. Verily! a clear proof (sign) from your Lord has come unto you; so give full measure and full weight and wrong not men in their things, and do not mischief on the earth after it has been set in order that will be better for you, if you are believers. And sit not on every road, threatening, and hindering from the Path of Allah those who believe in Him, and seeking to make it crooked. Remember when you were but few, and He multiplied you. See what was the end of the Mufsideen (mischief makers, corrupts and liars). And if there is a party of you who believes in that which I have been sent and a party who do not believe, so be patient until Allah judges between us, and He is the Best of judges.”

The chiefs of those who were arrogant among his people said: “We shall certainly drive you out, O Shu’aib! and those who have believed with you from our town, or else you all shall return to our religion.”

He said: “Even though we hate it! We should have invented a lie against Allah if we returned to your religion, after Allah has rescued us from it. It is not for us to return to it unless Allah, our Lord, should will. Our Lord comprehends all things in His Knowledge. In Allah (Alone) we put our trust. Our Lord! Judge between us and our people in truth, for You are the Best of those Who gives judgment.” The chiefs of those who disbelieved among his people said to their people: “If you follow Shu’aib be sure then you will be the losers!”

Then he (shu’aib) turned from them and said: “O my people! I have indeed conveyed my Lord’s Messages unto you and I have given you good advice. Then how can I sorrow for the disbelieving people’s (destruction).” (Ch 7:85-93 Quran)

The people of Madyan were Arabs who lived in the country of Ma’an, part of which today is greater Syria. They were a greedy people who did not believe that Allah existed and who led wicked lives. They gave short measure, praised their goods beyond their worth, and hid their defects. They lied to their customers, thereby cheating them.

Allah sent His Prophet Shu’aib (pbuh) armed with many miracles. Shu’aib preached to them, begging them to be mindful of Allah’s favors and warning them of the consequences of their evil ways, but they only mocked him. Shu’aib remained calm as he reminded them of his kinship to them and that what he was doing was not for his personal gain.

They seized the belongings of Shu’aib and his followers, then drove them out of the city. The Messenger turned to his Lord for help, and his plea was answered. Allah sent down on them scorching heat and they suffered terribly. On seeing a cloud gathering in the sky, they thought it would bring cool, refreshing rain, and rushed outside in the hope of enjoying the rainfall. Instead the cloud burst, hurling thunderbolts and fire. They heard a thunderous sound from above which caused the earth under their feet to tremble. The evil doers perished in this state of horror.

The Disbeliever’s Ignorance

Allah the Exalted stated:

“The dwellers of Al Aiyka (near Midian, or Madyan) belied the Messengers. When Shu’aib said to them: “Will you not fear Allah and obey Him? I am a trustworthy Messenger to you. SO fear Allah, keep your duty to Him, and obey me. No reward do I ask of you for it (my message of Islamic Monotheism), my reward is only from the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn and all that exists). Give full measure, and cause no loss to others. And weigh with the true and straight balance. Defraud not people by reducing their things nor do evil making corruption and mischief in the land. Fear Him Who created you and the generations of the men of old.”

They said: “You are only one of those bewitched! You are but a human being like us and verily, we think that you are one of the liars! So cause a piece of heaven to fall on us, if you are of the truthful!”

He said: “My Lord is the Best Knower of what you do.” But, they belied him, so the torment of the day of shadow (a gloomy cloud) seized them, indeed that was the torment of a Great Day. Verily, in this is a sign yet most of them are not believers. And verily! Your Lord, He is indeed the All Mighty, the Most Merciful.” (Ch 26:176-191 Quran).

Isaiah and Hezekiah

Among the prophets between David and Zakariah is Isaiah (pbuh), Ibn Amoz (Amisiah). According to Muhammad Ibn Ishaaq, Isaiah (pbuh) appeared before Zakariah (pbuh) and Yahya (John the Baptist) (pbuh). He is among those who prophesied about Isa (Jesus) (pbuh) and Muhammad (pbuh). The king during his time was called Hezekiah (Hazkia). He listened and was obedient to Isaiah in what he advised him to do and prohibit for the good of the state. Affairs took momentum among the Israelites. The king became sick with an infected foot. While he was sick, King Sennacherib (Sinharib) of Babylon advanced towards Jerusalem with sixty thousand men.

Allah Grants More Life to Hezekiah

The people were greatly terrified. The King asked Isaiah: “What did Allah reveal to you regarding Sennacherib and his army?” He replied: “He has not yet revealed anything to me.” Then the revelation came down for King Hezekiah to appoint a successor, as he wished, because his end was at hand. When Isaiah told him this, the king turned to the qibla (the direction faced in prayer); he prayed, glorified Allah, invoked Him, and wept. Weeping and invoking Allah the All-Powerful and majestic with a sincere heart, trust and patience, he said: “O Lord of lords, and God of gods! O, Benevolent and Merciful One Whom neither sleep nor nodding can overpower, remember me for my deeds and my just judgment over the children of Israel; and all that was from You, and You know it better than I do, my open acts and my secrets are with You.”

Allah answered his prayers had compassion on him. He revealed to Isaiah to tell him the glad tidings that He had compassion for his weeping and would extend his life for a further fifteen years and save him from the enemy, Sennacherib. When Isaiah told this to Hezekiah, his disease was healed. Evil and sadness departed, and he fell prostrate, saying: “O Lord, it is You Who grants kingship to whomsoever You wish and dethrones whomsoever You wish and elevates whomsoever You wish and degrades whomsoever You wish, Knower of the unseen and the evident. And lo! You are the First and the Last; the Manifest and the Perceived; You grant mercy and answer the prayers of the troubled ones.”

When he raised his head, Allah revealed to Isaiah to command the king to extract the water of the fig and apply it to his sore, and he would be whole and cured. He did so and was cured.

Allah Destroys Hezekiah’s Enemies

Then Allah sent death upon the army of Sennacherib. In the morning they were all corpses, except Sennacherib and five of his companions, among them Nebuchadnezzar (Bukhtanasar). The king of Israel immediately sent for them, put them in shackles and displayed them in the land for seventy days to spite and insult them. Every day each of them was fed a loaf of barley bread; after seventy days he confined them in prison.

Allah then revealed to Isaiah that the king should send them back to their country so that they might warn their people what would happen to them. When they returned, Sennacherib gathered his people and told them what had happened to them. The priests and magicians said to him: “We told you about their Lord and their prophets, but you did not listen to us. It is a nation which, with their God, nobody can overcome.” So, Sennacherib was afraid of Allah. He died seven years later.

Israel After Hezekiah’s Death

Ibn Ishaaq also reported that when King Hezekiah of Israel died, the Israelites’ condition deteriorated; there was political confusion, and their wickedness increased. Isaiah preached to them what Allah revealed to him, directing them to righteousness and warning them of Allah’s severe punishment. His preaching made him their enemy and they decided to kill him, so he escaped from them.

Isaiah’s Death

Ibn Ishaaq also reported an Israelite interpolation which said that when Isaiah was passing by a tree, it opened, and he entered therein; but Satan saw him and held onto the loop of his garment so that it stuck out. When they saw it, they brought a saw and sawed the tree, and him with it. Indeed, from Allah we come and to him we return.

The State of the Israelites After Joshua

Ibn Jarir reported that the condition of the Israelites deteriorated. They committed many sins and killed whom they wished of the prophets. Consequently Allah sent them tyrannous king who ill-treated them and spilled their blood, and set their enemies from outside against them as well. They used to go war, taking with them The Ark of the Covenant. They did this so that they would be victorious by its blessings, and it became a symbol of calm and a relic left behind by Moses’s people. When they went to war with the people of Gaza and Askalon, they were defeated because the Ark of the Covenant was captured from them. When the king of the Israelites heard of this he died on the spot. The children of Israel remained like sheep without a shepherd until Almighty Allah sent them a prophet named Samuel (Shammil) (pbuh). They asked him to appoint a king over them to lead in a war against their enemies.

The Ark of the Covenant

According to Ibn ‘Asaker, the Israelites believed their Ark of the Covenant to be very holy and an important symbol of their history. The carried the Ark even in battle and believed that, because of it, Allah would protect them from their enemies. This belief gave them peace of mind and great courage, and their enemies were terrified by it. Their enemies also believed that it was given special power by Allah. Gradually the Israelites started to ignore Allah’s law; evil habits became part of their lives. Allah sent upon them an enemy, the Philistines, who defeated the Israelites, captured their Ark, drove them out of their homes, and took away their children to use or sell as slaves. Their power was broken. They separated from one another and were very disheartened.

Samuel Comes to the Israelites

Then came Prophet Samuel (pbuh) among them to bring some relief. They asked the prophet’s help in appointing a strong leader, a king under whose banner they could unite and fight the Philistines. Prophet Samuel (pbuh), knowing their weakness, told them: “I fear that when the time comes to fight you may refuse.” But they assured him that they had suffered enough insults and were now ready to fight in the way of Allah, even if they lost their lives. Prophet Samuel prayed to Allah for guidance. Allah revealed to him that He had chosen one, Saul (Talut), to be their king. The prophet wanted to know how to recognize the future king. He was told that Saul would come to him by himself and that they should then hand over the control of kingdom to him, for he would lead them in battle against the Philistines.

Saul is Appointed King

Saul was tall and sturdy, pious, and very intelligent. He lived and worked with his father on their farm. One day, several of their donkeys were lost. Accompanied by his servant, Saul went in search of them. They traveled for many days and were very tired. Saul said to his servant: “Let us rather go back, for I am sure that my father will be worried by now, and the other animals must also be cared for.” His servant suggested that as they were already in the land of Samuel the prophet, they should go to him to inquire about the lost donkeys. Saul agreed, and they carried on. On their way, they asked directions from some maidens carrying water. They were told to go in the direction of the mountain. Here, a vast crowd was waiting for the Prophet Samuel. When Saul set eyes on him, he instantly recognized him as a prophet by his holy men. Samuel also recognized Saul as the king that Allah had chosen for them. Saul greeted the prophet respectfully. When he asked about his missing donkeys, Samuel told him not to worry, his donkeys were already on their way to his fat’s farm.

He then told Saul that Allah had chosen him as the king of the children of Israel. His duty would be to take charge of their affairs, to unite them under one banner, and to protect them from their enemies. If he carried out Allah’s commands, he would be given victory. Saul was surprised by this sudden honor offered to him. It was also a heavy responsibility. He protested to the prophet that he was a of the children of Benjamin, the least famous of the tribes of Jacob; he did not know anything of leadership or kingship and had no wealth. Samuel told him that it was the will of Allah that he should be the king, that he should thank Allah for His favor and be strong in faith.

Saul is Appointed King – Quranic

Taking Saul by the hand, Samuel led him to the children of Israel, but they insisted on a direct sign from Allah. Prophet Samuel told them to go outside the city to see the sign, which they did. Almighty Allah revealed:

“Have you not thought about the group of children of Israel after (the time of ) Moses? Whenthey said to a Prophet of theirs: “Appoint for us a king and we will fight in Allah’s Way.”He said: “Would you then refrain from fighting, if fighting was prescribed for you?”They said: “Why should we not fight in Allah’s Way while we have been driven out of our homesand our children (families have been taken as captives)?”But when fighting was ordered for them, they turned away, all except a few of them. And Allah isAll-Aware of the Zalimeen (polytheists, and wrongdoers).And their Prophet (Samuel) said to them: “Indeed Allah has appointed Saul as a king over you.”They said: “How can he be a king over us when we are better fitted than him for the kingdom,and he has not been given enough wealth.”He said: “Verily, Allah has chosen him above you and has increased him abundantly inknowledge and stature. And Allah grants His Kingdom to whom He wills. And Allah isAll-Sufficient for His creatures’ needs, All-Knower.”

And their Prophet (Samuel) said to them:

“Have you not thought about the group of the Children of Israel after (the time of) Mus (Moses)? When they said to a Prophet of theirs, “Appoint for us a king and we will fight inAllÂh’s Way.” He said, “Would you then refrain from fighting, if fighting was prescribed foryou?” They said, “Why should we not fight in AllÂh’s Way while we have been driven out of our homes and our children (families have been taken as captives)?” But when fighting was orderedfor them, they turned away, all except a few of them. And AllÂh is All-Aware of the ZÂlimÛn (polytheists and wrong-doers). And their Prophet (Samuel) said to them, “Indeed AllÂh has appointed TalÛt (Saul) as a king over you.” They said, “How can he be a king over us when we are better fitted than him for thekingdom, and he has not been given enough wealth.” He said: “Verily, AllÂh has chosen himabove you and has increased him abundantly in knowledge and stature. And AllÂh grants HisKingdom to whom He wills. And AllÂh is All-Sufficient for His creatures’ needs, All-Knower.” And their Prophet (Samuel) said to them: Verily! The sign of His Kingdom is that there shallcome to you At-TÂbÛt (a wooden box), wherein is Sakinah (peace and reassurance) from yourLord and a remnant of that which Mus (Moses) and HÂrÛn (Aaron) left behind, carried by the angels. Verily, in this is a sign for you if you are indeed believers.” (Ch. 2: 246-250)

Saul Leads an Army – Quranic

Then when Saul set out with the army, he said:“Verily! Allah will try you by a river. So whoever drinks thereof, he is not of me, and whoever tastes it not, he is of me, except him who takes thereof in the hollow of his hand.” Yet, they drank thereof, all, except a few of them. So when he had crossed it (the river), he and those who believed with him, they said: “We have no power on this day against Goliath and his hosts.” But those who knew with certainty that they were to meet their Lord, said: “How often a small group overcame a mighty host by Allah’s Leave?” And Allah is with the patient.

And when they advanced to meet Goliath and his forces, they invoked:

“Then when TalÛt (Saul) set out with the army, he said: “Verily! AllÂh will try you by a river. So whoever drinks thereof, he is not of me, and whoever tastes it not, he is of me, except him who takes (thereof) in the hollow of his hand.” Yet, they drank thereof, all, except a few of them. So when he had crossed it (the river), he and those who believed with him, they said: “We have nopower this day against JalÛt (Goliath) and his hosts.” But those who knew with certainty thatthey were to meet their Lord, said: “How often a small group overcame a mighty host by AllÂh’sLeave?” And AllÂh is with As-SÂbirin (the patient ones, etc.).

And when they advanced to meet Jalut (Goliath) and his forces, they invoked: “Our Lord! Pour forth on us patience and make us victorious over the disbelieving people.”

Saul Leads an Army

Saul set about organizing his army with strong faith and wisdom. He ordered that only men free from responsibilities should join. Those engaged in building homes, men who were about to be married and those occupied with business should not join. After establishing a well-trained army, he decided to put them to the test. He told them that along the route they would pass a river where they should drink enough water to quench their thirst but not more than that. To his disappointment, he discovered the majority of them drank more water than they should have. He discharged them for disobedience and kept only the few who had obeyed him, as they were the ones who proved their sincerity. This resulted in a split in the army, but he was not bothered. He believed in quality and not numbers; better a small band of true believers he could rely on than a huge army of unreliable men.

Saul’s Army Sees the Enemy

Saul’s men sighted the enemy on the other side of the river. Their opponents appeared physically strong and were armed with better weapons. They were led by the mighty warrior Goliath (Galut), known for his huge build and brute strength. A great number of Saul’s men ran away on seeing this strong force. The small band that remained was willing to fight, whatever the outcome, for they had heard that there had been many incidents in the past in which Allah had caused a small force to defeat a larger one.

Description of the People of Thamud

After the destruction of the Ad, the tribe of Thamud succeeded them in power and glory. They also fell to idol-worshipping. As their material wealth increased so, too, did their evil ways while their virtue decreased. Like the people of Ad, they erected huge buildings on the plains and hewed beautiful homes out of the hills. Tyranny and oppression became prevalent as evil men ruled the land.

Description of Salih

So Allah sent unto them His Prophet Salih (PBUH), a man from among them. His name was Salih Ibn Ubeid, Ibn Maseh, Ibn Ubeid, Ibn Hader, Ibn Thamud, Ibn Ather, Ibn Eram, Ibn Noah. He called his people to worship Allah alone, and to not associate partners with Him. While some of them believed him, the majority of them disbelieved and harmed him by both words and deeds. Salih directed them:

“O my people! Worship Allah, you have no other Ilah (god) but Him.” (Ch 11:61)

Salih was known for his wisdom, purity and goodness and had been greatly respected by his people before Allah’s revelation came to him. Salih’s people said to him:

“O Salih! You have been among us as a figure of good hope and we wished for you to be our chief, till this, new thing which you have brought that we leave our gods and worship your God (Allah) alone! Do you now forbid us the worship of what our fathers have worshipped? But we are really in grave doubt as to that which you invite us to monotheism.” (CH 11:62 Quran).

Salih’s People Demand a Miracle

They merely wanted to worship the same gods as their fathers had, with no reason, no proof, no thought. The proof of Salih’s (PBUH) message was evident, but despite this it was obvious that most of his people did not believe him. They doubted his words, thinking he was charmed, and they saw that he would not stop preaching. Fearing that his followers would increase, they tried to put him off by assigning him an important task; to prove that he was a messenger of Allah by performing a miracle. Let a unique she camel issue from the mountains. Allah granted Salih this miracle and a huge, unique, she camel appeared from the direction of the mountain. The Quranic commentators said that the people of Thamud gathered on a certain day at their meeting place, and the prophet Salih (PBUH) came and addressed them to believe in Allah, reminding them of the favors Allah had granted them. Then pointing at a rock, they demanded: “Ask your Lord to make a she camel, which must be 10 months pregnant, tall and attractive, issue from the rock for us.” Salih replied: “Look now! If Allah sends you what you have requested, just as you have described, will you believe in that which I have come to you with and have faith in the message I have been sent with?”

They answered: “Yes.”

So he took a vow from them on this, then prayed to Allah the Almighty to grant their request. Allah ordered the distant rock to split asunder, to bringing forth a great ten month pregnant she camel. When their eyes set on it, they were amazed. They saw a great thing, a wonderful sight, a dazzling power and clear evidence!

A number of Salih’s people believed, yet most of them continued in their disbelief, stubbornness, and going astray. Allah the Almighty said:

“We sent the she camel to Thamud as a clear sign, but they did her wrong. (Ch 17:59)

and also:

“Verily the dwellers of Al Hijr (the rocky tract) denied the Messengers. We gave them Our Signs, but they were averse to them. (Ch 15:80-81 Quran)

There are a number of ancient accounts of this camel and its miraculous nature. It was said that the she camel was miraculous because a rock in the mountain split open and it came forth from it, followed by its young offspring. Other accounts said that the she camel used to drink all the water in the wells in one day, and no other animals could approach the water. Still others claimed that the she camel produced milk sufficient for all the people to drink, on the same day that it drank all the water, leaving none for them. At first, the people of Thamud were greatly surprised when the she camel issued from the mountain rocks. It was a blessed camel, and its milk sufficient for thousands of men, women and children. If it slept in a place that place was abandoned by other animals. Thus it was obvious that is was not an ordinary camel, but one of Allah’s signs. It lived among Salih’s people, some of whom believed in Allah while the majority continued in their obstinacy and disbelief. Their hatred of Salih turned towards the blessed she camel and became centered on it. A conspiracy started to be hatched against the camel by the disbeliveers, and they secretly plotted against it.

Salih feared that they might kill the camel, so he warned them:

“O my people! This she camel of Allah is a sign to you, leave her to feed on Allah’s earth, and touch her not with evil lest a near torment will seize you.” (Ch 11:64 Quran)

For awhile, Salih’s people let the camel graze and drink freely, but in their hearts they hated it. However, the miraculous appearance of the unique camel caused many to become Salih’s followers, and they clung to their belief in Allah.

Stories About the She-camel

The disbeliveers now began complaining that this huge she camel with its unusual qualities drank most of the water and frightened their cattle. They laid a plot to kill the camel, and sought the help of their women folk to tempt the men to carry out their commands. Saduq bint of Mahya, who was from a rich and noble family, offered herself to a young man named Masrai Ibn Mahraj on condition that he hamstring the camel. Aniza, an old woman, offered one of her daughters to a young man, Qudar Ibn Saluf, in return for killing the camel. Naturally these young men were tempted and set about finding seven others to assist them.

They watched the camel closely, observing all its movements. As the she camel came to drink at the well, Masarai shot it in the leg with an arrow. It tried to escape but was hampered by the arrow. Qudar followed the camel and struck it with a sword in the other leg. As it fell to the ground, he pierced it with his sword.

The killers were given a hero’s welcome, cheered with songs and poetry composed in their praise. In their arrogance they mocked Salih, but he warned them: “Enjoy life for 3 more days then the punishment will descend upon you.” Salih was hoping that they would see the folly of their ways and change their attitude before the three days went out.

“Why three days?” they asked. “Let the punishment come as quickly as possible.”

He pleaded with them: “My people, why do you hasten to evil rather than good? Why do not you ask pardon of Allah so that you may receive mercy?”

They replied: “We see your presence and that of your followers as bringing evil on us.”

Almighty Allah related their story:

“And indeed We sent to Thamud their brother Salih, saying “Worship Allah Alone and none else.” Then look! They became two parties (believers and disbeliveers) quarreling with each other. He said: “O my people! Why do you seek to hasten the evil (torment) before the good (Allah’s Mercy)? Why seek you not the Forgiveness of Allah, that you may receive mercy?” They said: We augur till omen from you and those with you.” he said: “Your ill omen is with Allah; nay, but you are a people that are being tested.” And there were in the city nine men (from the sons of their chiefs), who made mischief in the land, and would not reform. They said: “Swear to another by Allah that we shall make a secret night attack on him and his household, and afterwards we will surely say to his near relatives: “We witnessed not the destruction of his household, and verily! We are telling the truth.””

So they plotted a plot, and We planned a plan, while they perceived not. Then see how was the end of their plot! Verily! We destroyed them and their nation, all together. These are their houses in utter ruin, for they did wrong. Verily, in this is indeed an Ayah (a lesson or a sign) for people who know. We saved those who believed, and used to fear and obey Allah. (Ch 27:45-53 Quran)

They also plotted to kill Salih and his household as Almighty Allah stated:

“So they plot, and We planned a plan, while they perceived not.” (Ch 27:50 Quran) Allah saved Salih and his followers from their wicked plans. Heavy hearted, they left the evil doers and moved to another place. Three days after Salih’s warning, thunderbolts filled the air, followed by severe earthquakes which destroyed the entire tribe and its homeland. The land was violently shaken, destroying all living creatures in it. There was one terrific cry which had hardly ended when the disbeliveers of Salih’s people were struck dead, one and all, at the same time. Neither their strong buildings nor their rock hewn homes could protect them.

Allah the Exalted said:

“To Thamud people We sent their brother Salih. HE said: “O my people! Worship Allah, you have no other Ilah (god) but Him (none has the right to be worshipped but Allah). Indeed there has come to you a clear sign ( the miracle of the coming out of a huge she camel from the midst of a rock) from your Lord. This she camel of Allah is a sign unto you so you leave her to graze in Allah’s earth, and touch her not with harm, lest a painful torment should size you. Remember when He made you successors after Ad people and gave you habitations in the land, you build for yourselves palaces in plains and carve out homes in the mountains. So remember the graces bestowed upon you from Allah, and do not go about making mischief on the earth.”

The leaders of those who were arrogant among his people said to those who were counted weak to such of them as believed: “Know you that Salih is one sent from his Lord.” They said: “We indeed believe in that with which he has been sent.” Those who were arrogant said: “Verily, we disbelieve in that which you believe in.” So they killed the she camel and insolently defied the Commandment of their Lord, and said: “O Salih! Bring about your threats if you are indeed one of the Messengers (of Allah).” So the earthquakes seized them and they lay dead, prostrate in their homes. Then he (Salih) turned from them, and said: “O my people! I have indeed conveyed to you the Message of my Lord, and have give you good advise but you like not good advisers.” (Ch 7:73-79 Quran)

All were destroyed before they realized what was happening. As for the people who believed in the message of Salih (PBUH), they were saved because they had left the place. Ibn Umar narrated that while the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) was passing by Thamud’s houses on his way to the battle of Tabuk, he stopped together with the people there. the people fetched water from the wells from which the people of Thamud used to drink. They prepared their dough (for baking) and filled their water skins from it (the water from the wells). The Prophet of Allah (PBUH) ordered them to empty the water skins and give the prepared dough to the camels. Then he went away with them until they stopped at the well from which the she camel (of Salih) used to drink. He warned them against entering upon the people that had been punished, saying “I fear that you may be affected by what afflicted them; so do no enter upon them.”

Variation on the Birth of Noah

He was Noah Ibn Lamik, Ibn Mitoshilkh, Ibn Enoch, Ibn yard, Ibn Mahlabeel, Ibn Qinan, Ibn Anoush, Ibn Seth, Ibn Adam the Father of Mankind (PBUH). According to the history of the People of the Book, (refers to the Jews, and Christians, so called by Allah because they received Revealed Books, Taurat, Zabur and Injeel. These names are translated ‘Torah, Psalms, and Gospels’ respectively, but the books that are extent are corrupt. Of the Revealed Books, ONLY the Quran remains exactly as it was revealed).

The period between the birth of Noah and the death of Adam was 146 years. (According to Genesis 5 (new Revised Standard Version), Noah was born one hundred and twenty six years after the death of Adam. Ibn Abbas narrated that the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “The period between Adam and Noah was ten centuries.” (Sahih Bukhari, Noah was born 1056 years after Adam’s creation (or after he left the Garden of Eden). Thus, this hadith does not contradict the previous statement from the People of the Book as it may first appear to do. The reader should keep in mind, however that any statement or narratives taken from the People of the Book are not necessarily credible. This was taken from Genesis 5).

Noah’s People – Idolaters

For many generations Noah’s people had been worshipping statues that they called gods. They believed that these gods would bring them good, protect them from evil and provide all their needs. They gave their idols names such as Waddan, Suwa’an, Yaghutha, Ya’auga, and Nasran, (These idols represented, respectively, manly power; mutability, beauty; brute strength, swiftness, sharp sight, insight) according to the power they thought these gods possessed.

Allah the Almighty revealed:

“They (idolaters) have said: “You shall not leave your gods nor shall you leave Wadd, nor Suwa, nor Yaghuth, nor Ya uq nor Nasr (names of the idols).” (CH 71:23 Quran).

Originally these were the names of good people who had lived among them. After their deaths, statues of them were erected to keep their memories alive. After sometime, however, people began to worship these statues. Later generations did not even know why they had been erected; they only knew their parents had prayed to them. That is how idol worshipping developed. Since they had no understanding of Allah the Almighty Who would punish them for their evil deeds, they became cruel and immoral.

Various Hadith describing the Origin of Idolatry

Ibn Abbas explained: “Following upon the death of those righteous men, Satan inspired their people to erect statues in the places where they used to sit. They did this, but these statues were not worshiped until the coming generations deviated from the right way of life. Then they worshipped them as their idols.”

In his version, Ibn Jarir narrated: “There were righteous people who lived in the period between Adam and Noah and who had followers who held them as models. After their death, their friends who used to emulate them said: ‘If we make statues of them, it will be more pleasing to us in our worship and will remind us of them.’ So they built statues of them, and , after they had died and others came after them, Iblis crept into their minds saying:’Your forefathers used to worship them, and through that worship they got rain.’ So they worshipped them.”

Ibn Abi Hatim related this story: “Waddan was a righteous man who was loved by his people. When he died, they withdrew to his grave in the land of Babylonia and were overwhelmed by sadness. When Iblis saw their sorrow caused by his death, he disguised himself in the form of a man saying: ‘I have seen your sorrow because of this man’s death; can I make a statue like him which could be put in your meeting place to make you remember him?’ They said: ‘Yes.’ So he made the statue like him. They put it in their meeting place in order to be reminded of him. When Iblis saw their interest in remembering him, he said: ‘Can I build a statue of him in the home of each one of you so that he would be in everyone’s house and you could remember him?’ They agreed. Their children learned about and saw what they were doing. They also learned about their remembrance of him instead of Allah. So the first to be worshipped instead of Allah was Waddan, the idol which they named thus.”

The essence of this point is that every idol from those earlier mentioned was worshipped by a certain group of people. It was mentioned that people made picture sand as the ages passed they made these pictures into statues, so that their forms could be fully recognized; afterwards they were worshipped instead of Allah.

It was narrated that Umm Salmah and Umm Habibah told Allah’s Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) about the church called “Maria” which they had seen in the land of Abyssinia. They described its beauty and the pictures therein. He said: “Those are the people who build places of worship on the grave of every dead man who was righteous and then make therein those pictures. Those are the worst of creation unto Allah.” (Sahih al Bukhari).

Commentary – Idolatry

Worshipping anything other than Allah is a tragedy that results not only in the loss of freedom; its serious effect reaches man’s mind and destroys it as well. Almighty Allah created man and his mind with its purpose set on achieving knowledge the most important of which is that Allah alone is the Creator and all the rest are worshippers (slaves). Therefore, disbelief in Allah, or polytheism, results in the loss of freedom, the destruction of the mind, and the absence of a noble target in life. (By worshipping anything other than Allah, man becomes enslaved to Satan, who is himself a creature and becomes harnessed to his own baser qualities).Into this environment Allah sent Noah with His message to his people. Noah was the onlyintellectual not caught in the whirlpool of man’s destruction which was caused by polytheism.

Noah’s Reasoning with his People

Allah in His Mercy sent His messenger Noah to guide his people. Noah was an excellent speaker and a very patient man. He pointed out to his people the mysteries of life and the wonders of the universe. He pointed out how the night is regularly followed by the day and that the balance between these opposites were designed by Allah the Almighty for our good. The night gives coolness and rest while the day gives warmth and awakens activity. The sun encourages growth, keeping all plants and animals alive, while the moon and stars assist in the reckoning of time, direction and seasons. He pointed out that the ownership of the heavens and the earth belongs only to the Divine Creator. Therefore, he explained to this people, there cannot have been more than one deity. He clarified to them how the devil had deceived them for so long and that the time had come for this deceit to stop. Noah spoke to them of Allah’s glorification of man, how HE had created him and provided him with sustenance and the blessings of a mind. He told them that idol worshipping was a suffocating injustice to the mind. He warned them not to worship anyone but Allah and described the terrible punishment Allah would mete out if they continued in their evil ways.

Division Among Noah’s People

The people listened to him in silence. His words were a shock to their stagnating minds as it is a shock to a person who is asleep under a wall which is about to fall and who is vigorously awakened. This person may be alarmed and may even become angry although the aim was to save him. Noah’s people were divided into two groups after his warning. His words touched the hearts of the weak, the poor, and the miserable and soothed their wounds with its mercy. As for the rich, the strong, the mighty and the rulers they looked upon the warning with cold distrust. They believed they would be better off if things stayed as they were. Therefore they started their war of words against Noah.

The Disbelievers’ Arguments

First they accused Noah of being only human like themselves.

“The chiefs of the disbelievers among his people said: “We see you but a man like ourselves.”‘ (Ch 11:27 Quran)

He, however, had never said anything other than that. He asserted that, indeed, he was only a human being; Allah had sent a human messenger because the earth was inhabited by humans. If it had been inhabited by angels Allah would have sent an angelic messenger. The contest between the polytheists and Noah continued. the rulers had thought at first that Noah’s call would soon fade on its own. When they found that his call attracted the poor, the helpless and common laborers, they started to verbally attack and taunt him: ‘You are only followed by the poor, the meek and the worthless.’

Allah the Almighty told us:

“Indeed We sent Noah to his people (he said): “I have come to you as a plain Warner that you worship none but Allah, surely, I fear for you the torment of a painful Day.” the chiefs of the disbeliveers among his people said: “We see you but a man like ourselves, nor do we see any follow you but the meanest among us and they too followed you without thinking. And we do not see in you any merit above us in fact we think you are liars.” (CH 11:25-27).

The Disbelievers Attempt to Bargain

Thus the conflict between Noah and the heads of his people intensified. The disbeliveers tried to bargain: “Listen Noah, if you want us to believe in you, then dismiss your believers. They are meek and poor, while are elite and rich; no faith c an include us both.” Noah listened to the heathens of his community and realized they were being obstinate. However, he was gentle in his response. He explained to his people that he could not dismiss the believers as they were not his guests but Allah’s. Noah appealed to them:

“O my people! I ask of you no wealth for it, my reward is from none but Allah. I am not going to drive away those who have believed. Surely, they are going to meet their Lord, but I see that you are a people that are ignorant. O my people! Who will help me against Allah, if I drove them away? Will you not then give a thought? And I do not say to you that with me are the Treasures of Allah nor that I know the unseen, nor do I say I am an angel, and I do not say of those whom your eyes look down upon that Allah will not bestow any good on them. Allah knows what is in their inner selves (regards to Belief). In that case, I should, indeed be one of the Zalimeen (wrongdoers, oppressors etc).” (Ch 11:29-31 Quran)

Noah refuted the arguments of the disbelievers with the noble knowledge of the prophets. It is the logic of intellect that rids itself of personal pride and interests.

The Disbelievers Remain Ignorant

The rulers were tired of Noah’s arguments. Allah the Exalted related their attitude:

They said: “O Noah! You have disputed with us and much have you prolonged the dispute with us, now bring upon us what you threaten us with, if you are of the truthful.” He said: “Only Allah will bring it (the punishment)on you, if He will, and then you will escape not. And my advice will not profit you, even if I wish to give you counsel, if Allah’s Will is to keep you astray. He is your Lord! And to Him you shall return.” (Ch 11:32-34 Quran)

The battle continued; the arguments between the disbeliveers and Noah became prolonged. When all the refutations of the disbeliveers collapsed and they had no more to say, they began to be rude and insulted Allah’s prophet:

“The leaders of his people said: “Verily, we see you in plain error.” (Ch 7:60 Quran)

Noah responded in the manner of the prophets:

“O my people! There is no error in me, but I am a Messenger from the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn and all that exists)! I convey unto you the Messages of my Lord and give sincere advice to you. And I know from Allah what you know not.” (CH 7:61-62 Quran)

Noah continued appealing to his people to believe in Allah hour after hour, day after day year after year. He admonished his people and called them to Allah day and night, in secret and openly. HE gave them examples, explained Allah’s signs and illustrated Allah’s ability in the formation of His creatures. But whenever he called them to Allah, they ran away from him. Whenever he urged them to ask Allah to forgive them, they put their fingers in their ears and became too proud to listen to the truth.

Noah’s Appeal to His People

Allah the Almighty related what Noah faced:

“Verily, We sent Noah to his people saying: “Warn your people before there comes to them a painful torment.” He said: “O my people! Verily, I am a plain Warner to you, that you should worship Allah alone, be dutiful to Him and obey me, He (Allah) will forgive you of your sins and respite you to an appointed term. Verily, the term of Allah when it comes, cannot be delayed, if you but knew.” He said: “O my Lord! Verily, I have called my people night and day (secretly and openly to accept the doctrine of Islamic Monotheism), but all my calling added nothing but to their flight from the truth. Verily! Everytime I called unto them that You might forgive them, they thrust their fingers into their ears, covered themselves up with their garments, and persisted (in their refusal), and magnified themselves in pride. Then verily, I called to them openly (aloud); then verily, I proclaimed to them in public, and I have appealed to them in private, I said to them: ‘Ask forgiveness from your Lord, Verily, He is Oft Forgiving; He will send rain to you in abundance, and give you increase in wealth and children, and bestow on you gardens and bestow on you rivers.”

What is the matter with you, that you fear not Allah (His Punishment), and you hope not for reward from Allah or you believe not in His Oneness. While He has created you in different stages. (Ch 23:13-14 Quran) See you not how Allah has created the seven heavens one above another, and has made the moon a light therein and made the sun a lamp? And Allah has brought you forth from the dust of earth. Afterwards He will return you into it (the earth), and bring you forth (again on the Day of Resurrection) Allah has made for you the earth wide spread (an expanse) that you may go about therein broad roads.

Noah said: “My Lord! They have disobeyed me, and followed one whose wealth and children give him no increase but only loss. They have plotted a mighty plot. They have said: ‘you shall not leave your gods, nor shall you leave wadd, nor Suwa, nor Yaghuth, nor ya’uq nor Nasr (names of the idols). Indeed they have led many astray. O Allah! Grant no increase to the Zalimeen (polytheists, wrongdoers, and disbeliveers etc) save error.”

Because of their sins they were drowned, then were made to enter the Fire and they found none to help them instead of Allah. (Ch 71:1-25 Quran).

The Length of Noah’s Preaching

Noah continued to call his people to believe in Allah for nine hundred fifty years. Allah the Almighty said: Indeed We sent Noah to his people and he stayed among them a thousand years less fifty years (inviting them to believe in the Oneness of Allah (Monotheism) and discard the false gods and other deities). (Ch 29:14 Quran)

It happened that every passing generation admonished the succeeding one not to believe Noah and to wage war against him. the father used to teach his child about the matter that was between himself and Noah and counsel him to reject his call when he reached adulthood. Their natural disposition rejected believing and following the truth.

Noah saw that the number of believers was not increasing, while that of the disbeliveers was. He was sad for his people, but he never reached the point of despair.

Noah Prays for the Disbeliever’s End

There came a day when Allah revealed to Noah that no others would believe. Allah inspired him not to grieve for them at which point Noah prayed that the disbeliveers be destroyed. He said:

“My Lord! Leave not one of the disbeliveers on the earth. If you leave them, they will mislead Your slaves and they will beget none but wicked disbeliveers.” (Ch 71:27 Quran)

Allah accepted Noah’s prayer. The case was closed, and He passed His judgment on the disbeliveers in the form of a flood. Allah the Exalted ordered His worshipper Noah to build an ark with His knowledge and instructions and with the help of angels. Almighty Allah commanded:

“And construct the ship under Our Eyes and with Our Inspiration and address Me not on behalf of those who did wrong; they are surely to be drowned.” (Ch 11:37 Quran)

Noah Builds the Ark

Noah chose a place outside the city, far from the sea. HE collected wood and tools and began to day and night to build the ark. The people’s mockery continued: “O Noah! Does carpentry appeal to you more than prophethood? Why are you building an ark so far from the sea? Are you going to drag it to the water or is the wind going to carry it for you?” Noah replied: “You will come to know who will be put to shame and suffer.”

Allah the Almighty narrated:

“As he was constructing the ship, whenever the chiefs of his people passed by him, they made a mockery of him. He said : “If you mock at us, so do we mock at you likewise for your mocking. And you will know who it is on whom will come a torment that will cover him with disgrace and on whom will fall a lasting torment.” (Ch 11:38-39 Quran)

The Flood begins

The ship was constructed, and Noah sat waiting Allah’s command. Allah revealed to him that when water miraculously gushed forth from the oven at Noah’s house, that would be the sign of the start of the flood, and the sign for Noah to act.

The terrible day arrived when the oven at Noah’s house overflowed. Noah hurried to open the ark and summon the believers. He also took with him a pair, male and female, of every type of animal, bird and insect. Seeing him taking these creatures to the ark, the people laughed loudly: “Noah must have gone out of his head! What is he going to do with the animals?” Almighty Allah narrated:

“So it was till then there came Our Command and the oven gushed forth (water like fountains from the earth). We said: “Embark therein, of each kind two (male and female), and your family, except him against whom the Word has already gone forth, and those who believe.” And none believed him except a few.(Ch 11:40 Quran)

The Number of Believers

Noah’s wife was not a believer with him so she did not join him; neither did one of Noah’s sons, who was secretly a disbeliever but had pretended faith in front of Noah. Likewise most of the people were disbeliveers and did not go on board.

The scholars hold different opinions on the number of those who were with Noah on the ship. Ibn Abbas stated that there were 80 believers while Ka ab al Ahbar held that there were 72 believers. Others claimed that there were 10 believers with Noah.

Description of the Flood

Water rose from the cracks in the earth; there was not a crack from which water did not rise. rain poured from the sky in quantities never seen before on earth. Water continued pouring from the sky rising from the cracks; hour after hour the level rose. The seas and waves invaded the land. The interior of the earth moved in a strange way, and the ocean floors lifted suddenly, flooding the dry land. The earth, for the first time was submerged.

Noah Appeals to his Son

Allah told the story thus: He (Noah) said:

“Embark therein in the Name of Allah will be its moving course and its resting anchorage. Surely, my Lord is Oft Forgiving, most Merciful.”

So it (the ship) sailed with them amidst the waves like mountains, and Noah called out to his son, who had separated himself (apart), “O my son! Embark with us and be not with the disbeliveers.”

The son replied, “I will betake myself to a mountain, it will save me from the water.” Noah said: “This day there is no savior from the Decree of Allah except him on whom He has mercy.” And a wave came in between them so he (the son) was among the drowned.” (Ch. 11: 41-43)

The Flood Ends

It was said:

“O Earth! Swallow up your water, and O sky! Withhold (your rain).” The water was diminished (made to subside) and the Decree (of Allah) was fulfilled (the destruction of the people of Noah). And it (the ship) rested on Mount Judi, and it was said: “Away with the people who are Zalimeen (polytheists, and wrongdoing)!”

And it was said:

“O Noah! Come down (from the ship) with peace from Us and blessings on you and on the people o\who are with you(and on some of their offspring), but (there will be other) people to whom We shall grant their pleasures (for a time), but in the end a painful torment will reach them from Us.” (Ch 11:41-48 Quran) With the issue of the divine command, calm returned to earth, the water retreated, and the dry land shone once again in the rays of the sun. The flood had cleansed the earth of the disbeliveers and polytheists.

The Believers Disembark

Noah released the birds, and the beats which scattered over the earth. After that the believers disembarked. Noah put his forehead to the ground in prostration. The survivors kindled a fire and sat around it. Lighting a fire had been prohibited on board so as not to ignite the ship’s wood and burn it up. None of them had eaten hot food during the entire period of the floor. Following the disembarkation there was a day of fasting in thanks to Allah.

Noah’s Death

The Quran draws the curtain on Noah’s story. We do not know how his affairs with his people continued. All we know or can ascertain is that on his deathbed he requested his son to worship Allah alone, Noah then passed away. Abdullah Ibn Amr Ibn Al as narrated that the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said: “When the death of the Messenger of Allah Noah approached, he admonished his sons: ‘Indeed I would give you far reaching advice, commanding you to do two things, and warning you against doing two things as well. I charge you to believe that there is no god but Allah and that if the seven heavens and the seven earths were put on one side of a scale and the words “there is no god but Allah” were put on the other, the latter would outweigh the former. I warn you against associating partners with Allah and against pride.” (Sahih al Bukhari)

Some traditions said that his grave is in the Scared Mosque in Mecca, while others said that he was buried in Baalabak, a city in Iraq.

Description of the Pharaoh

The pharaoh who ruled Egypt was a tyrant who oppressed the descendants of Jacob (pbuh),known as the children of Israel (Bani Israel). He used every means to demean and disgrace them.They were kept in bondage and forced to work for him for small wages or nothing. Under thissystem the people obeyed and worshipped the pharaoh, and the ruling class carried out his orders,thereby authorizing his tyranny and crazy whims.The pharaoh wanted the people to obey him only, and to believe in the gods of his invention.Perhaps, during that time, there were many classes of people who did not believe in or practicepolytheism; however, they kept this to themselves and outwardly did as they were expected to do,without revolting or revealing themselves to anyone.

Thus, successive dynasties came to Egypt and assumed that they were gods or their representativeor spokesmen.

Visions of Dethroning the Pharaoh

Years passed, and a despotic king, who was adored by the Egyptians, ruled Egypt. His king saw the children of Israel multiplying and prospering. He heard them talking about a vague vision that one of Israel’ s sons would dethrone the pharaoh of Egypt. Perhaps this vision was only a daydream that persisted within the hearts of the persecuted minority, or perhaps it was a prophecy from their books. Another tradition states that it was Pharaoh himself who had the vision. Ibn ‘Abbas narrated: “Pharaoh saw in his vision a fire, which came from Jerusalem and burned the houses of the Egyptians, and all Copts, and did not do harm to the children of Israel. When he woke up, he was horrified. He then gathered his priests and magicians and asked them about this vision. They said: “This means a boy will be born of them and the Egyptian people will perish at his hands.’ That is why Pharaoh commanded that all male children of the children of Israel be killed.” Either way, this vision reached the ears of the Pharaoh. He then issued a decree to slay any male child that would be born to the children of Israel.

The Killing of the Children of Israel

The killing of the children of Israel was carried out until the experts of economics said to Pharaoh: “The aged of the children of Israel die and the young are slaughtered. This will lead to their annihilation. As a result, Pharaoh will lose the manpower of those who work for him, those whom he enslaves, and their women whom he exploits. It is better to regulate this procedure by initiating the following policy: males should be slaughtered in one year but spared to live the next year.”

Pharaoh found that solution to be safer economically.

The Birth of Aaron and Moses (PBUT)

Moses’s mother was pregnant with Aaron (pbuh) in a year that boys were spared; thus she gave birth to the child publicly and safely. During a year in which boys were to be slain, she gave birth to Moses (pbuh); thus his birth caused her much terror. She was afraid he would be slain, so she nursed him secretly.

Description of the Pharaoh and Birth of Moses – Quranic

Allah the Almighty revealed:

“These are Verses of the manifest Book (that makes clear truth from falsehood, good from evil, etc.). We recite to you some of the news of Moses and Pharaoh in truth, for a people who believe (those who believe in this Quran, and in the Oneness of Allah). Verily, Pharaoh exalted himself in the land and made its people sects, weakening (oppressing) a group (children of Israel) among them, killing their sons, and letting their females live. Verily, he was of the Mufsideen (those who commit great sins and crimes, oppressors, tyrants, etc.). And we wished to do a favor to those who were weak (and oppressed) in the land, and to make them rulers and to make them the inheritors, and to establish them in the land, and We let Pharaoh and Haman and their hosts receive from them that which they feared. And We inspired the mother of Moses, saying: “Suckle him (Moses), but when you fear for him, then cast him into the river and fear not, nor grieve. Verily! We shall bring him back to you, and shall make him one of (Our) Messengers.” (Ch 28: 2-7 Quran).

Moses Thrown into the Nile

No sooner had the divine revelation finished that she obeyed the sacred and merciful call. She was commanded to make a basket for Moses. She nursed him, put him into the basket, then went to the shore of the Nile and threw it into the water. Her mother’s heart, the most merciful one in the world, grieved as she threw her son into the Nile. However, she was aware that Allah was much more merciful to Moses than to her, that He loved him more than her. Allah was his Lord and the Lord of the Nile.

Hardly had the basket touched the water of the Nile than Allah issued His command to the waves to be calm and gentle while carrying the child would one day be a prophet. She instructed her daughter to follow the course of the basket and to report back to her. As the daughter followed the floating basket along the riverbank, she found herself right in the palace grounds and saw what was unfolding before her eyes.

The basket came to rest at the riverbank, which skirted the king’s palace. The palace servants found the basket with the baby and took it to the Pharaoh and his queen. When the queen beheld the lovely infant, Allah instilled in her a strong love for this baby. Pharaoh’s wife was very different from Pharaoh. He was a disbeliever; she was a believer. He was cruel; she was merciful.

He was a tyrant; she was delicate and goodhearted. She was sad because she was infertile and hadhoped to have a son. Hardly had she held the baby than she kissed him.Pharaoh was much amazed when he saw his wife hugging this baby to her breast. He was muchastonished because his wife was weeping with joy, something he had never seen her do before.She requested her husband: “Let me keep the baby and let him be a son to us.”

Moses Finds a Home – Quranic

Almighty Allah said:

“Then the household of Pharaoh picked him up, that he might become for them an enemy and a cause of grief. Verily! Pharaoh, Haman, and their hosts were sinners. And the wife of Pharaoh said; “A comfort of the eye for me and for you. Kill him not, perhaps he maybe of a benefit to us, or we may adopt him as a son.” And they perceived not (the result of that). (Ch 28:9 Quran)

Moses and His Mother Reunited

The queen summoned a few wet nurses to suckle the baby Moses, but he would not take any of their breasts. The queen was distressed and sent for more wet nurses. Moses’s sister was also worried, as her baby brother was without milk for a long time. Seeing the queen’s anxiety, she blurted that she knew jut the mother who would suckle the child affectionately.

They asked her why she was following the floating basket. She said she did so out of curiosity. Her excuse sounded reasonable, so they believed her. They ordered her to rush and fetch the woman she was talking about. Her mother also was waiting with a heavy heart, worried about the fate of her baby. Just then her daughter rushed in with the good news. Her heart lifted and she lost no time in reaching the palace. As the child was put to her breast, he immediately started suckling. Pharaoh was astonished and asked: “Who are you? This child has refused to take any other breast but yours.”

Had she told the truth, Pharaoh would have known that the child was an Israelite and would have killed Moses instantly. However, Allah gave her inner strength and she replied: “I am a woman of sweet milk and sweet smell,and no child refuses me.” This answer satisfied Pharaoh. From that day onward, she was appointed as Moses’s wet nurse. She continued to breast-feed him for a long time. When he was bigger and was weaned, she was allowed the privilege of visiting him. Moses was raised in the palace as a prince.

Moses and His Mother Reunited – Quranic

“And the heart of the mother of Mûsa (Moses) became empty [from every thought, except the thought of Mûsa (Moses)]. She was very near to disclose his (case, i.e. the child is her son), had We not strengthened her heart (with Faith), so that she might remain as one of the believers. And she said to his [Musa’s (Moses)] sister: “Follow him.” So she (his sister) watched him from a far place secretly, while they perceived not. And We had already forbidden (other) foster suckling mothers for him, until she (his sister came up and) said: “Shall I direct you to a household who will rear him for you, and sincerely theywill look after him in a good manner?” So did We restore him to his mother, that she might be delighted, and that she might not grieve,and that she might know that the Promise of Allâh is true. But most of them know not.” (Ch. 28:10-13)

The Qualities of Moses – Quranic

And when he attained his full strength, and was perfect (in manhood), We bestowed on him Hukman (Prophethood, right judgment of the affairs) and religious knowledge (of the religion of his forefathers, Islamic Monotheism). And thus do We reward the Muhsineen (good-doers).” (Ch 28:14 Quran)

Moses Kills and Egyptian

Allah had granted Moses (pbuh) good health, strength, knowledge, and wisdom. The weak and oppressed turned to him for protection and justice. One day in the main city, he saw two men fighting. One was an Israelite, who was being beaten by the other, an Egyptian. On seeing Moses, the Israelite begged him for help. Moses became involved in the dispute and, in a state of anger, struck a heavy blow on the Egyptian, who died on the spot. Upon realizing that he had killed a human being, Moses’s heart was filled with deep sorrow, and immediately he begged Allah for forgiveness.

He had not intended to kill the man. He pleaded with Almighty Allah to forgive him, and he felt a sense of peace filling his whole being. Thereafter Moses began to show more patience and sympathy towards people.

The next day he saw the same Israelite involved in another fight. Moses went to him and said: “You seem to be a quarrelsome fellow. You have a new quarrel with one person or another each day.” Fearing that Moses might strike him, the Israelite warned Moses: “Would you kill me as you killed the wretch yesterday?”

The Egyptian with whom the Israelite was fighting overheard this remark and reported Moses to the authorities. Soon thereafter, as Moses was passing through the city, a man approached and alerted him: “O Moses, the chiefs have taken counsel against you. You are to be tried and killed. I would advise you to escape.”

Moses Kills an Egyptian – Quranic

Moses knew that the penalty for killing an Egyptian was death. Allah the Exalted recounted:

“And he entered the city at a time of unawareness of its people, and he found there two men fighting, one of his party (his religion, from the children of Israel), and the other of his foes. The man of his own party asked him for help against his foe, so Moses struck him with his fist and killed him. He said, “This is of Satan’s doing, verily, he is a plain misleading enemy.”

He said: “My Lord! Verily, I have wronged myself, so forgive me.” Then He forgave him. Verily, He is the Oft-Forgiving, the Most Merciful. He said: “My Lord! For that with which You have favored me, I will never more be a helper for the Mujrimeen (criminals, disobedient to Allah, polytheists, sinners, etc.)!” So he became afraid, looking about in the city (waiting as to what will be the result of his crime of killing), when behold, the man who had sought his help the day before, called for his help again. Moses said to him: “Verily, you are a plain misleader!” Then when he decided to seize the man who was an enemy to both of them, the man said: “O Moses! Is it your intention to kill me as you killed a man yesterday? Your aim is nothing but to become a tyrant in the land, and not to be one of those who do right.” And there came a man running, from the farthest end of the city. He said: “O Moses! Verily, the chiefs are taking counsel together about you, to kill you, so escape. Truly, I am to you of those who give sincere advice.” So he escaped from there, looking about in a state of fear. He said: “My Lord! Save me from the people who are Zalimeen (polytheists, and wrong-doers)!” (Ch 28:15-21 Quran)

Moses Leaves Egypt

Moses left Egypt in a hurry without going to Pharaoh’s palace or changing his clothes. Nor was he prepared for traveling. He did not have a beast of burden upon which to ride, and he was not in a caravan. Instead, he left as soon as the believer came and warned him of Pharaoh’s plans. He traveled in the direction of the country of Midian, which was the nearest inhabited land between Syria and Egypt. His only companion in this hot desert was Allah, and his only provision was piety. There was not a single root to pick to lessen his hunger. The hot sand burned the soles of his feet. However, fearing pursuit by Pharaoh’s men, he forced himself to continue on.

Moses Helps Women Shepherds

He traveled for eight nights, hiding during the day. After crossing the main desert, he reached a watering hole outside Midian where shepherds were watering their flocks. No sooner had Moses reached the Midian than he threw himself under a tree to rest. He suffered from hunger and fatigue. The soles of his feet felt as if they were worn out from hard walking on sand and rocks and from the dust. He did not have any money to buy a new pair of sandals, nor to buy food or drink. Moses noticed a band of shepherds watering their sheep. He went to the spring, where he saw two young women preventing their sheep from mixing with the others. Moses sensed that the women were in need of help. Forgetting his thirst, he drew nearer to them and asked if he could help them in any way. The older sister said: “We are waiting until the shepherds finish watering their sheep, then we will water ours.”

Moses asked again: “Why are you waiting?”

The younger one: “We cannot push men.”

Moses was surprised that women were shepherding, as only men were supposed to do it. It is hard and tiresome work, and one needs to be on the alert. Moses asked: “Why are youshepherding?”The younger sister said: “Our father is an old man; his health is too poor for him to go outdoorsfor pasturing sheep.”

Moses (pbuh) said: “I will water the sheep for you.”

When Moses approached the water, he saw that the shepherds had put over the mouth of thespring an immense rock that could only be moved by ten men. Moses embraced the rock andlifted it out of the spring’s mouth, the veins of his neck and hands standing out as he did so. Moseswas certainly strong. He watered their sheep and put the rock back in its place.He returned to sit in the shade of the tree. At this moment he realized that he had forgotten todrink. His stomach was sunken because of hunger.

Moses Helps Women Shepherds – Quranic

Almighty Allah described this event:

And when he arrived at the water of Midian (Midyan) he found there a group of men wateringtheir flocks, and besides them he found two women who were keeping back their flocks. He said:”What is the matter with you?” They said: “We cannot water (our flocks) until the shepherds taketheir flocks. And our father is a very old man.”So he watered their flocks for them, then he turned back to shade, and said: “My Lord! Truly, Iam in need of whatever good that You bestow on me!” (Ch 28:22-24 Quran)

Moses Finds a Home Among Shepherds

The young ladies returned home earlier than usual, which surprised their father. They related the incident at the spring which was the reason that they were back early. Their father sent one of his daughters to invite the stranger to his home. Bashfully, the woman approached Moses and delivered the message. “My father is grateful for what you have done for us. He invites you to our home so that he may thank you personally.” Moses welcomed this invitation and accompanied the maiden to her father. Moses could see that they lived comfortably as a happy and peaceful household. He introduced himself and told the old man about the misfortune that he had befallen him and had compelled him to flee from Egypt. The old man comforted him: “Fear not, you have escaped from the wrong-doers.” Moses’s gentle behavior was noticed by the father and his daughters. The kind man invited him to stay with them. Moses felt at home with this happy household, for they were friendly and feared Allah.

Moses Becomes a Shepherd

One of the daughters suggested to her father that he employ Moses, as he was strong and trustworthy. They needed someone like him, especially at the water hole, which was visited by ruffians.

The father asked her how she could be sure of his trustworthiness in such a short time. She replied: “When I bade him to follow me to our home, he insisted that I walk behind him so he would not observe my form (to avoid sexual attraction).”

The old man was pleased to hear this. He approached Moses and said: “I wish to marry you to one of my daughters on condition that you agree to work for me for a period of eight years.” This offer suited Moses well, for being a stranger in this country, he would soon have to search for shelter, and work. Moses married the Midianite’s daughter and looked after the old man’s animals for ten long years.

Moses Becomes a Shepherd – Quranic

Almighty Allah recounted:

“Then there came to him one of the two women, walking shyly. She said: “Verily, my father calls you that he may reward you for having watered our flocks for us.” So when he came to him and narrated the story, he said; “Fear you not. You have escaped from the people who are Zalimeen (polytheists, disbeliveers, and wrong-doers).” And said one of them (the two women): “O my father! Hire him! Verily, the best of men for you to hire is the strong, the trustworthy.” He said: “I intend to wed one of these two daughters of mine to you, on condition that you serve me for eight years, but if you complete ten years, it will be a favor from you. But I intend not to place you under a difficulty. If Allah wills, you will find me one of the righteous.” He (Moses) said: “That is settled between me and you whichever of the two terms I fulfill, there will be no injustice to me, and Allah is Surety over what we say.” ( Ch 28:25-28 Quran)

The Ten Years of Preparation

Time passed, and he lived in seclusion far from his family and his people. This period of ten years was of importance in his life. It was a period of major preparation. Certainly Moses’s mind was absorbed in the stars every night. He followed the sunrise and the sunset every day. He pondered on the plant and how it splits and soil and appears thereafter. He contemplated water and how the earth is revived by it and flourishes after its death. Of course, he was immersed in the Glorious Book of Allah, open to the insight and heart. He was immersed in the existence of Allah. All these became latent within him. The religion of Moses (pbuh) was the same as that of Jacob (pbuh), which was Islamic monotheism. His forefather was Jacob (pbuh) the grandson of Abraham (pbuh). Moses (pbuh), therefore, was one of the descendants of Abraham (pbuh) and every prophet who came after Abraham was one of Abraham’s successors. In addition to physical preparation, there was a similar spiritual preparation. It was made in complete seclusion, in the middle of the desert, and in the places of pasture. Silence was his way of life, and seclusion was his vehicle. Allah the Almighty prepared for His prophet the tools he would need later on to righteously bear the commands of Allah the Exalted.

Moses Decides to Return to Egypt

One day after the end of this period, a vague homesickness arose in Moses’s heart. He wanted to return to Egypt. He was fast and firm in making his decision, telling his wife: “Tomorrow we shall leave for Egypt.” His wife said to herself. “There are a thousand dangers in departing that have not yet been revealed.” However, she obeyed her husband.

Moses himself did not know the secret of the quick and sudden decision to return to Egypt. After all, he had fled from their ten years ago with a price on his head. Why should he go back now? Did he look forward to seeing his mother and brother? Did he think of visiting Pharaoh’s wife who had raised him and who loved him as if she were his mother? No one knows what went through Moses’s mind when he returned to Egypt. All we know is that a mute obedience to Allah’s destinies impelled him to make a decision and he did. These supreme destinies steered his steps towards a matter of great importance.

Moses Begins His Prophethood

Moses left Midian with his family and traveled through the desert until he reached Mount Sinai. There Moses discovered that he had lost his way. He sought Allah’s direction and was shown the right course. At nightfall they reached Mount Tur. Moses noticed a fire in the distance. “I shall fetch a firebrand to warm us.” As he neared the fire, he heard a sonorous voice calling him: “O Moses, I am Allah, the Lord of the Universe.” Moses was bewildered and looked around. He again heard the strange voice. “And what is in you right hand, O Moses?” Shivering, Moses answered: “This is my staff on which I lean, and with which I beat down branches for my sheep, and for which I find other uses.” (This question was asked so that Moses’ attention would focus on the staff and to prepare him for the miracle which was to happen. This was the beginning of Moses’s mission as a prophet -pbuh). The same voice commanded him: “Throw down your staff!” He did so, and at once the staff became a wriggling snake. Moses turned to run, but the voice again addressed him: “Fear not and grasp it; We shall return it to its former state.” The snake changed back into his staff. Moses’s fear subsided and was replaced by peace, for he realized that he was witnessing the Truth. Next, Allah commanded him to thrust his hand into his robe at the armpit. When he pulled it out, the hand had a brilliant shine. Allah then commanded Moses; “You have two signs from Your Lord; go to Pharaoh and his chiefs, for they are an evil gang and have transgressed all bounds.” However, Moses feared that he would be arrested by Pharaoh, so he turned to Allah saying: “My Lord! I have killed a man among them and I fear that they will kill me.” Allah assured him of his safety and set his heart at rest.

Moses Begins His Prophethood – Quranic

Almighty Allah narrated this event:

“And has there come to you the story of Moses? When he saw a fire, he said to his family: “Wait! Verily, I have seen a fire, perhaps I can bring you some burning brand therefrom, or find some guidance at the fire.” And when he came to it the fire, he was called by name: “O Moses! Verily! I am your Lord! So take off your shoes, you are in the sacred valley, Tuwa. And I have chosen you. So listen to that which is inspired to you. Verily! I am Allah! La ilaha illa Ana (none has the right to be worshipped but I), so worship Me, and offer prayers perfectly, for My Remembrance. Verily, the Hour is coming – and My Will is to keep it hidden – that every person may be rewarded for that which he strives. Therefore, let the one who believes not therein (in the Day of Resurrection, Reckoning, Paradise and Hell etc) but follows his own lusts, divert your therefrom lest you perish. And what is that in your right hand, O Moses?” He said: “This is my stick, whereon I lean, and wherewith I beat down branches for my sheep and wherein I find other uses.” Allah said: “Cast it down, O Moses!” He cast it down, and behold! It was a snake, moving quickly. Allah said: “Grasp it, and fear not, We shall return it to its former state, and press your right hand to your left side, it will come forth white and shining, and without any disease as another sign, that We may show you some of Our Greater Signs. “Go To Pharaoh! Verily! He has transgressed (all bounds in disbelief and disobedience, and has behaved as an arrogant, and as a tyrant).” (Ch. 20: 9-24)

Moses and Aaron (PBUT) Given Their Duties – Quranic

Moses said: “O my Lord! Open for me my chest (grant me self-confidence, contentment, and boldness). And ease my task for me; and make loose the knot (the defect) from my tongue, (remove the incorrectness of my speech) that they understand my speech, and appoint for me a helper from my family, Aaron, my brother; increase my strength with him, and let him share my task (of conveying Allah’s Message and Prophethood), and we may glorify You much, and remember You much, Verily! You are of us Ever a Well-Seer.” Allah said: “You are granted your request, O Moses! And indeed We conferred a favor on you another time before. When We inspired your mother with that which We inspired, saying: “Put him (the child) into the Tabut (a box or a case or a chest) and put him into the river (Nile), and then the river shall cast it up on the bank, and there, an enemy of Mine and an enemy of his shall take him.’ And I endured you with love from Me, in order that you maybe brought up under My Eye, when your sister went and said; “Shall I show you one who will nurse him?’ So We restored you to your mother, that she might cool her eyes and she should not grieve. Then you did kill a man, but We saved you from a great distress and tried you with a heavy trial. Then you stayed a number of years witthe people of Midian. Then you came here according to the term which I ordained (for you), O Moses! “And I have Istana’tuka (chosen you for My Inspiration and My Message) for Myself. Go you and your brother with My Ayat (proofs, lessons, verses, evidences, signs, revelations, etc), and do not, you both, slacken and become weak in My Remembrance. “Go, both of you, to Pharaoh, verily, he has transgressed all bounds in disbelief and disobedience and behaved as an arrogant and as a tyrant. And speak to him mildly, perhaps he may accept admonition or fear Allah.” They said: “Our Lord! Verily! We fear lest he should hasten to punish us or lest he should transgress all bounds against us.”

He (Allah) said: “Fear not, Verily! I am with you both, Hearing and Seeing. So go you both to him, and say: “Verily, we are Messengers of your Lord, so let the children of Israel go with us, and torment them not; indeed, we have come with a sign from your Lord! And peace will be upon him who follows the guidance! Truly, it has been revealed to us that the torment will be for him who denies (believes not in the Oneness of Allah, and in His Messengers, etc), and turns away’ (from the truth, and obedience of Allah).” (Ch 20:9-48 Quran).

Moses and Aaron (PBUT) Talk to the Pharaoh

Moses (pbuh) and Aaron (pbuh) went together to Pharaoh and delivered their message. Moses spoke to him about Allah, His mercy and His Paradise and about the obligations of monotheism and His worship. Pharaoh listened to Moses’ speech with disdain. He thought that Moses was crazy because he dared to question his supreme position. Then he raised his hand and asked: “What do you want?” Moses answered: “I want you to send the children of Israel with us.” Pharaoh asked: “Why should I send them, as they are my slaves?” Moses replied: “They are the slaves of Allah, Lord of the Worlds.” Pharaoh then inquired sarcastically if his name was Moses. Moses said “Yes.” “Are you not the Moses whom we picked up from the Nile as a helpless baby? Are you not the Moses whom we reared in this palace, who ate and drank from our provisions and whom our wealth showered with charity? Are you not the Moses who is a fugitive, the killer of an Egyptian man, if my memory does not betray me? It is said that killing is an act of disbelief. Therefore, you were a disbeliever when you killed. You are a fugitive from justice and you come to speak to me! What were you talking about Moses, I forgot?” Moses knew that Pharaoh’s mentioning his past, his upbringing, and his receiving Pharaoh’s charity was Pharaoh’s way of threatening him. Moses ignored his sarcasm and explained that he was not a disbeliever when he killed the Egyptian, he only went astray and Allah the Almighty had not yet given him the revelation at that time. He made Pharaoh understand that he fled from Egypt because he was afraid of their revenge upon him, even though the killing was an accident. He informed him that Allah had granted him forgiveness and made him one of the messengers.

Moses and Aaron (PBUT) Talk to the Pharaoh – Quranic

Allah the Almighty revealed to us part of the dialogue between Moses (pbuh) and Pharaoh:

“Allah said: “Nay! Go you both with Our Signs, Verily! We shall be with you, listening. And when you both come to Pharaoh, say: “We are the Messengers of the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn and all that exists), and So allow the children of Israel to go with us.”” Pharaoh said to Moses: “Did we not bring you up among us as a child ? And you did dwell many years of your life with us. And you did your deed which you did (the crime of killing a man) and you are one of the ingrates.” Moses said: “I did it then, when I was an ignorant (as regards my Lord and His Message). So I fled from you when I feared you. But my Lord has granted me Hukman (religious knowledge, right judgments of the affairs and Prophethood), and appointed me as one of the Messengers. And this is the past favor with which you reproach me, and that you have enslaved the children

of Israel.”Pharaoh said: “And what is the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn and all that exists)?”Moses replied: “Lord of the heavens, and the earth, and all that is between them, if you seek tobe convinced with certainty.”Pharaoh said to those around: “Do you not hear what he says?”Moses said: “Your Lord and the Lord of your ancient fathers!”Pharaoh said: “Verily, your Messenger who has been sent to you is a madman!”Moses said: “Lord of the east, and the west, and all that is between them, if you did butunderstand!”Pharaoh said: “If you choose an ilah (a god) other than me, I will certainly put you among theprisoners.”Moses said: “Even if I bring you something manifest (and convincing).”Pharaoh said: “Bring it forth then, if you are of the truthful!” (Ch 26:16-31 Quran)

Moses Proves Himself Right

The degree of the conflict expressed in this dialogue reached its apex; thus, the tone of dialogue changed. Moses used a convincing intellectual argument against Pharaoh. However, Pharaoh escaped from the circle of dialogue based on the logic and began a dialogue of another type, a type which Moses could not bear to follow; a dialogue of menacing and threatening. Pharaoh deliberately adopted the style of the absolute ruler. He asked Moses how he dared to worship Allah! Did he not know that Pharaoh was a god? After declaring his divinity, Pharaoh asked Moses how he dared to worship another god. The punishment for this crime was imprisonment. It was not permitted for anyone to worship anyone other than the Pharaoh. Moses understood that the intellectual arguments did not succeed. The calm dialogue was converted from sarcasm to mentioning charity, then to scorn, then to the threat of imprisonment.

Moses said: “Even if I bring you something manifest and convincing.” Pharaoh said; “Bring it forth, then, if you are of the truthful!” So Moses threw his stick, and behold, it was a serpent, manifest. And he drew out his hand, and behold, it was white to all beholders! (Ch 26:30-33 Quran)

Moses Defeats the Magicians

Pharaoh’s amazement turned to terror. Fearing that his rule was in danger, he addressed his advisors: “These are two wizards who will strip you of your best traditions and drive you of the country with their magic. What do you advise?” they counseled Pharaoh to detain Moses and his brother while they summoned the cleverest magicians in the country. Then they too, could show their skills of magic and change sticks into serpents. In this way they sought to reduce the influence of Moses’s miracles on the masses. Pharaoh detained Moses and Aaron. He dispatched couriers all o ver the land to enlist the best magicians. He offered each successful magician a big reward, including appointment as a royal courtier. On the customary festival day, which attracted citizens from all over the Egyptian empire, Pharaoh arranged for a public contest between Moses and the magicians. The people came in droves as near before when they heard of the greatest contest ever between Pharaoh’s many magicians and a single man who claimed to be a prophet. They had also heard of a baby who had once floated down the river Nile in a basket, landed on Pharaoh’s palace grounds, been reared as a prince, and who later had fled for killing an Egyptian with a single blow. Everyone was eager and excited to watch this great contest. Before it began, Moses arose. There was a hush in the huge crowd. Moses addressed the magicians. “Woe unto you, if you invent a lie against Allah by calling His miracles magic and by not being honest with the Pharaoh. Woe unto you, if you do not know the difference between the truth and falsehood. Allah will destroy you with His punishment, for he who lies against Allah fails miserably.” Moses had spoke sincerely and made the magicians think. But they were overwhelmed by their greed for money and glory. They hoped to impress the people with their magic and to expose Moses as a fraud and a cheat. Moses asked the magicians to perform first. They threw their magical objects down on the ground. Their staffs and ropes took the forms of wriggling serpents while the crowd watched in amazement. Pharaoh and his men applauded loudly. Then Moses threw his staff. It began to wriggle vand became an enormous serpent. The people stood up, craning their necks for a better view. Pharaoh and his men sat silently as, one by one, Moses’s huge serpent swallowed all the snakes. Moses bent to pick it up, and it became a staff in his hand. The crowd rose like a great wave, shouting and screaming with excitement. A wonder like this had never been seen before! On witnessing the power of Moses, the magicians prostrated themselves to Allah, declaring: “We believe in the Lord of Moses and Aaron.” Pharaoh was angry and began plotting his next move. He charged that the demonstration had been arranged secretly between Moses and the magicians. He demanded that the magicians confess to their scheme, threatening them with death. They refused to denounce Allah and stuck to their sincerity of their belief. No longer hiding his cruel nature, Pharaoh threatened to cut off their hands and feet and to crucify them on the trunks of palm trees as an example to his subjects.

Moses Defears the Magicians – Quranic

Almighty Allah recounted this event:

“He (Pharaoh) said: “Have you come to drive us out of our land with your magic, O Moses?Then verily, we can produce magic the like thereof; so appoint a meeting between us and you,which neither we, nor you shall fail to keep, in an open wide place where both shall have a justand equal chance (and beholders could witness the competition).”Moses said: “your appointed meeting is the day of the festival, and let the people assemble whenthe sun has risen (forenoon).”So Pharaoh withdrew, devised his plot and then came back. Moses said to them: “Woe unto you!Invent not a lie against Allah, lest He should destroy you completely by a torment. And surely, hewho invents a lie (against Allah) will fail miserably.”Then they debated with one another what they must do, and they kept their talk secret. They said:”Verily! There are two magicians. Their object is to drive you out from your land with magic andovercome your chiefs and nobles. So devise your plot, and then assemble in line. And whoeverovercomes this day will be indeed successful.”They said: “O Moses! Either you throw first or we be the first to throw?”

Moses said: “nay, throw you (first)!” Then behold, their ropes and their sticks, by their magic, appeared to him as though they moved fast. So Moses conceived a fear in himself. We (Allah) said: “Fear not! Surely, you will have the upper hand. Throw that which is in your right hand! It will swallow up that which they have made. That which they have made is only a magician’s trick, and the magician will never be successful, no matter whatever amount of skill he may attain.” So the magicians fell down prostrate. They said :”We believe in the Lord of Aaron and Moses.” Pharaoh said: “Believe you in him (Moses) before I give you permission? Verily! He is your chief who taught you magic. So I will surely cut off your hands and feet on opposite sides, and I will surely crucify you on the trunks of palm trees, and you shall surely know which of us (I Pharaoh,) or the Lord of (Moses) (Allah), can give the severe and more lasting torment.” They said: “We prefer you not over the clear signs that have come to us, and to Him (Allah) Who created us. So decree (regarding) this life of the world. Verily! We have believed in our Lord, that He may forgive us our faults, and the magic to which you did compel us. And Allah is better as regards reward in comparison to your (Pharaoh’s) reward, and more lasting (as regards punishment in comparison to you punishment).”

Allah’s Description of Belivers and Non-Believers – Quranic

Verily! Whoever comes to his Lord as a Mujrim (criminal, polytheist, disbeliever, in the Oneness of Allah and His Messengers, sinner, etc.), then surely, for him is Hell, therein he will neither die nor live. But whoever comes to Him (Allah) as a believer (in the Oneness of Allah, etc.), and has done righteous good deeds, for such are the high ranks (in the Hereafter), – Everlasting Gardens (And Paradise), under which rivers flow, wherein they will abide forever; such is the reward of those who purify themselves (by abstaining from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which Allah has forbidden and by doing all that which Allah has ordained). (Ch 20:58-76 Quran).

The People’s Non – Reaction to the defeat of the magicians

The magicians represented the elite of the Egyptian society. They were its scholars. They prostrated before righteousness, but the people abandoned them and left them to their fate. The path of righteousness was plain, but in spite of this, the people did nothing but stand by and watch.

If every one of the Egyptians had stopped to pick up a piece of brick and had thrown it at Pharaoh, he would have fallen dead and the history of Egypt would have been changed.

This obviously did not happen. None of the people moved. Each one stood motionless in his place. The people did nothing but watch, and they paid the price of this inactivity: they were drowned later as the price for the cowardice of one day.

The Pharaoh’s Reaction to Moses Victory

Moses and Aaron left, and Pharaoh returned to his palace. Pharaoh entered to his palace. Pharaoh

was completely stupefied when he faced the two miracles. When Moses went out of his presence,his emotions changed from amazement and fear to violent rage. He quarreled with his ministersand men, reviled them bitterly for no reason, and commanded them to get out of his presence.When he was left alone, he tried to think more calmly. He drank several cups of wine, but hisanger did not abate.

Then he summoned all the ministers, leaders, and responsible men for a serious meeting. Pharaohentered the meeting with a rigid face. It was obvious that he would never surrender easily. He hadestablished a kingdom on the basis of his being a god worshipped by the Egyptian people. NowMoses came to destroy what he had built. Moses said that there was no Lord other than Allah inexistence. This meant that Pharaoh was a liar.Pharaoh opened the session by throwing a sudden question at Haman: “Am I a liar, O Haman?”Haman fell to his knees in amazement and asked: “Who dared to accuse Pharaoh of lying?”Pharaoh said: “Has he (Moses) not said that there is a Lord in the heaven?”Haman answered: “Moses is lying.”Turning his face to the other side, Pharaoh asserted impatiently: “I know he is a liar.” Then helooked towards Haman (and cried):

“O Haman! Build me a tower that I may arrive at the ways, – the ways of the heavens, and I may look upon the Ilah (God) of Moses but verily, I think him to be a liar.” Thus it was made fair seeming, in Pharaoh’s eyes, the evil of his deeds, and he was hindered from the Right Path, and the plot of Pharaoh led to nothing but loss and destruction for him. (Ch 40:36-37 Quran).

Pharaoh issued his royal command to erect a lofty tower, its height to reach the heavens. Pharaoh’s command depended fundamentally upon Egyptian civilization and its fondness for building what Pharaoh wanted. However, he ignored the rules of engineering. In spite of this, Haman assented (hypocritically), knowing that it was impossible to erect such a tower. He said that he would issue a command to build it immediately. “However, your majesty, let me object to Pharaoh for the first time. You will never find anyone in the heavens. There is no god but you.” Pharaoh listened to a settled fact. Then he declared in the famous meeting his historic line:

“O chiefs! I know not that you an ilah (a god) other than me.” (Ch 28:38 Quran).

Pharaoh’s Men Spread Rumors

Pharaoh was absorbed in his new problem. A series of serious meetings began in his palace. He summoned those responsible for the army, the police and, what we call today his director of intelligence. He also summoned the ministers, princes, and priests. He called whoever had a powerful effect on the direction of events. Pharaoh asked his director of intelligence: “What do people say?” He said: “My men have spread among them that Moses won the contest because of a plot and that a major magician had joined with him in this plan. The plot had been disclosed, and we believe an unknown authority financed it.” Pharaoh asked his director of police: “What about the magicians’ corpses?”

He said: “My men hung them in public squares and markets to terrify the people. We will spread arumor that Pharaoh will kill whoever had anything to do with the plot.”Then Pharaoh asked the commander of the army: “What does the army say?”He said: “The army hopes that commands will be issued to move in whatever direction Pharaohdesires.”

Pharaoh said: “The role of the army has not come yet. Its role will come.”

Pharaoh’s Men Harm the Believers

Pharaoh fell silent. Haman, the Prime Minister, moved and raised his hand to speak. Pharaoh permitted him and Haman asked: “Will we leave Moses and his people to corrupt the rest of the people on the earth so that they leave your worship?” Pharaoh said: “You read my thoughts, O Haman. We will kill their sons, rape their women, and conquer them.” He issued commands, and Pharaoh’s men rushed to slay the sons, rape the women, and imprison whomever objected to these acts. Moses stood watching what was happening. He could not interfere, nor did he have the power to forbid these acts. All he could do was to advise his people to be patient. He ordered them to ask Allah the Almighty for a calamity on the Egyptians. He pointed out to them the model of the Egyptian magicians who endured for Allah’s sake without complaint. He helped them to understand that Pharaoh’s soldiers behaved on earth as if they were its private owners. Pharaoh’s terrorism infused the children of Israel with a spirit of defeat. They complained to Moses:

“We (children of Israel) had suffered troubles before you came to us, and since you have come to us.” He said: “It maybe that your Lord will destroy your enemy and make you successors on the earth, so that He may see how you act.” (Ch 7:129 Quran).

Korah – His Actions and Destruction

Moses began to face a difficult situation. He had to confront Pharaoh’s anger and his plots, while at the same time he had to deal with the mutiny of his people. In the midst of all this, Korah (Qaroun) moved.

Korah was one of Moses’ s people. He was very rich and lived in a magnificent mansion. He wore only the most expensive clothes. Numerous slaves waited on him and he indulged in every known luxury. His enormous wealth made him arrogant. Korah treated the poor with contempt and told them that their poverty was due to their lack of intelligence. He believed that what he owned was due to his own cleverness and business ability. Moses reminded Korah to pay alms (zakat) on his wealth, a portion of which was rightfully due to the poor. Alms are compulsory upon all the believers. Korah was annoyed by this advice and told Moses that his being wealthy was proof that he was favored by Allah, Who approved of his life-style and increased his wealth daily. Moses argued with him and warned him of the result of his wicked thoughts.

When Korah did calculate the alms due on his wealth, he was shocked at the large amount he had to part with. He not only refused to give alms, but spread a rumor that Moses had invented the law of zakat for his own gain. He even bribed the people to oppose Moses and to spread wicked rumors about him.Allah warned Moses of Korah’s plot. Moses appealed to Allah to punish him for his stinginess and for defying His laws. Allah’s anger fell on Korah. The earth opened up and swallowed him, his mansion and all his wealth, as if he had never existed.

Korah – His Actions and Destruction – Quranic

Almighty Allah revealed:

“Verily, Korah was of Moses’s people, but he behaved arrogantly towards them. And We gave him of the treasures, that of which the keys would have been a burden to a body of strong men. When his people said to him: “Do not be glad with ungratefulness to Allah’s Favors). Verily! Allah likes not those who are glad (with wealth) which Allah has bestowed on you, the home of the Hereafter, and forget nor your portion of legal enjoyment in this world, and do good as Allah has been good to you, and seek not mischief in the land. Verily, Allah likes not the Mufsideen (those who commit great crimes and sins, oppressors, tyrants, and mischief-makers, corrupts).” He said: “This has been given to me only because of knowledge I possess.” Did he not know that Allah had destroyed before him generations, men who were stronger than him in might and greater in the amount of riches, they had collected. But the Murimun (criminals, disbeliveers, polytheists, sinners, etc.) will not be questioned of their sins (because Allah knows them well, so they will be punished without account). So he went forth before his people in his pomp. Those who were desirous of the life of the world said: “Ah, would that we had the like of what Korah has been given! Verily! He is the owner of a great fortune.” But those who had been given religious knowledge said: “Woe to you! The Reward of Allah (in the Hereafter) is better for those who believe and do righteous good deeds, and this none shall attain except those who are patient (in following the truth).” So We caused the earth to swallow him and his dwelling place. Then he had no group or party to help him against Allah, nor was he one of those who could save themselves. And those who had desired (for a position like) his position, the day before, began to say; “Know you not that it is Allah Who enlarges the provision or restricts it to whomsoever He please of His slaves? Had it not been that Allah was Gracious to us, He could have caused the earth to swallow us up also!” Know you not that the disbeliveers will never be successful? (Ch 28:76-82 Quran).

The Pharaohs Relative Defends Moses

When the Egyptians and children of Israel examined the miracle, the conflict between Moses and Pharaoh again reached a crisis because Pharaoh believed that Moses was threatening his kingdom. Pharaoh was afraid that the people would be misled by Moses. He suggested to his ministers and notable men that Moses be killed. We believe that Haman supported the idea along with a front of disbeliveers. It was on the verge of approval, except for the vote of one of the notable men of the state, whose name is not mentioned in the Quran. The Quran says only that this man was a believer.

This believer spoke in the assembly where the idea of killing Moses had been introduced. He proved that it was not a good idea: “Moses did not say more than that Allah is his Lord. Later, he came with clear evidence that he is a messenger. There are two possibilities; either Moses is righteous or a liar. If he lies, he will be responsible for his lie. If he is righteous and we slay him, where is the guarantee that we will be rescued from the torment of Allah? Either way, he neither says nor does anything that merits our killing him.” This angered Pharaoh and his counselors and they threatened to harm the man, but he refused to budge from his stance. Then they tried to woo him back, but he still warned them that they were inviting their doom. This angered Pharaoh more, and he now threatened to kill the man. However, Allah protected His believer.

The Pharaoh’s Relative Defends Moses – Quranic

Almighty Allah revealed their dialogue:

Pharaoh said: “Leave me to kill Moses, and let him call his Lord (to stop me from killing him)! I fear that he may change your religion, or that he may cause mischief to appear in the land!” Moses said: “Verily, I seek refuge in my Lord and your Lord from every arrogant who believes not in the Day of Reckoning!” And a believing man of Pharaoh’s family, who hid his faith said: “Would you kill a man because he says: My Lord is Allah, and he has come to you with clear signs (proofs) from your Lord? And if he is a liar, upon him will be (the sin of) his lie; but if he is telling the truth, then some of that calamity wherewith he threatens you will befall on you. Verily, Allah guides not one who is a Musrif (a polytheist, or a murderer who shed blood without a right, or those who commit great sins, oppressor, transgressor, a liar! O my people! Yours is the kingdom this day, you are uppermost in the land. But, who will save us from the Torment of Allah, should it befall us?” Pharaoh said: “I show you only that which I see correct and I guide you only to the path of right policy!” And he who believed said: “O my people! Verily, I fear for you a fate like that day of disaster of the confederate of old! Like the fate of the people of Noah, and ‘Ad, and Thamud, and those who came after them. And Allah wills no injustice for His slaves. And, O my people! Verily! I fear for you the Day when there will be mutual calling between the people of Hell and of Paradise.” A Day when you will turn your backs and flee having no protector from Allah, and whomsoever Allah sends astray, for him there is no guide. And indeed Joseph did come to you, in times gone by, with clear signs, but you ceased not to doubt in that which he did bring to you, till when he died you said: “No Messenger will Allah send after him.” Thus Allah leaves astray him who is a Musrif (a polytheist, oppressor, a criminal, sinner who commits great sins) and a Murtab (one who doubts Allah’s warning and His Oneness). Those who dispute about the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, revelations and signs, etc.) of Allah, without any authority that has come to them, it is greatly hateful in the Sight of Allah and in the sigh of those who believe. Thus does Allah seal up the heart of every arrogant, tyrant. (So they cannot guide themselves to the Right Path). And Pharaoh said: “O Haman! Build me a tower that I may arrive at the ways, – the ways of the heavens, and I may look upon the Ilah (God ) of Moses but verily, I think him to be a liar.” Thus it was made fair seeming, in Pharaoh’s eyes, the evil of his deeds, and he was hindered from the Right Path, and the plot of Pharaoh led to nothing but loss and destruction for him. And the man who believed said: “O my people! Follow me, I will guide you to the way of right conduct (guide you to Allah’s Religion of Islamic Monotheism with which Moses has been sent). O my people! Truly, this life of the world is nothing but a (quick passing) enjoyment, and verily, the Hereafter that is the home that will remain forever. Whosoever does an evil deed, will not be requited except the like thereof, and whosoever does a righteous deed, whether male or female, and is a true believer (in the Oneness of Allah), such will enter Paradise, where they will be provided therein (with all things in abundance) without limit.” “And O my people! How is it that I call you to salvation while you call me to the Fire! You invite me to disbelieve in Allah (and in His Oneness), and to join partners in worship with Him, of which I have no knowledge, and I invite you to the All-Mighty, the Oft-Forgiving! No doubt you call me to worship one who cannot grant me my request or respond to my invocation in this world or in the Hereafter. And our return will be to Allah, and Al-Musrifeen (polytheists, and arrogants, those who commit great sins, the transgressors of Allah’s set limits)! The shall be the dwellers of the Fire! And you will remember what I am telling you, and my affair I leave it to Allah. Verily, Allah is the All-Seer of His slaves.” So Allah saved him from the evils that they plotted (against him), while an evil torment encompassed Pharaoh’s people. (Ch 40:26-45 Quran).

The Plagues of Egypt

Moses repeated his demand that Pharaoh release the children of Israel from slavery. In response, Pharaoh called his subjects, including the children of Israel, to a huge gathering where he reminded them that he was their lord and provided all their needs. Moses, he said, had no gold amulets nor angels following him; he was just a poor man. Being a people who had been oppressed for a very long time, they lacked vision. Their judgment were limited to what they could see in the material world. They regarded their ruler to be wealthy and able to provide all their worldly needs. In ignorance, they obeyed Pharaoh and ignored Moses’s call.

Egypt Suffers a Drought and a Flood

Allah commanded Moses to warn Pharaoh of a punishment in this world for his faithlessness and his persecution of the children of Israel. As a portent of the punishment which Allah would meet out, the Nile did not flood its banks to soak the dry land as it normally did. As a result, crops failed, leading to famine. However Pharaoh remained arrogant, so Allah caused a huge flood, which devastated the land.

Egypt’s Crops are Destroyed by Locusts

As often as they were troubled grievously, they appealed to Moses thus:

“O Moses! Invoke your Lord for us because of His Promise to you. IF you will remove the punishment from us, we indeed shall believe in you, and we shall let the children of Israel go with you.” (Ch 7:134 Quran)

Moses prayed to his Lord and He relived the suffering caused by the flood. The surging water ceased and withdrew from the land, and it became cultivatable. But when Moses bade them to fulfill their promise to release the children of Israel, they did not respond. Then Allah sent swarms of locusts which ate whatever corps they had grown. The people hurried to Moses, asking him to invoke Allah to remove this affliction and promising they would send the children of Israel with him this time. The locusts departed, but they did not fulfill their promise.

Egypt Becomes Infested with Lice

Then another sign came, the sign of lice, which spread amongst the Egyptians, carrying diseases. Their refuge to Moses and their promise to him was repeated. His prayer to Allah was repeated and so, too, their breach of promise, as usual.

Egypt Becomes Infested with Frogs

A sign of frogs was revealed. The land suddenly filled with frogs. They jumped on the food of the Egyptians, shared their houses, and distressed them greatly. The Egyptians went to Moses again, promising him to release the children of Israel. He prayed to his Lord, and Allah relieved them of the problem of the frogs, but they again broke their promise.

Nile’s water was changed to Blood

Then the last sign was revealed, the sign of blood. The Nile water was changed into blood. When Moses and his people drank the water, it was, for them, ordinary water. However, if any Egyptian filled his cup with the water, he discovered his cup full of blood. They hurried to Moses as usual, but as soon as everything returned to normal, they turned their backs on Allah.

Allah’s Punishments on the Disbelievers – Quranic

Almighty Allah said:

“And indeed We punished the people of Pharaoh with years of drought, and shortness of fruits (crops, etc.), that they mighty remember (take heed). But whenever good came to them, they said: “Ours is this.” And if evil athem, they ascribed it to evil omens connected with Moses and those with him. Be informed! Verily, their evil omens are with Allah but most of them know not. They said to Moses: “Whatever Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) you may bring to us, to work therewith your sorcery on us, we shall never believe in you.” So We sent on them: the flood, the locusts, the lice, the frogs, and the blood: (as a succession of) manifest signs, yet they remained arrogant, and they were of those people who were Mujrimeen (criminals, polytheists, sinners, etc.) (Ch 7:130-133 Quran)

Almighty Allah also said:

” But when We removed the punishment from them to a fixed term, which they had to reach, behold! They broke their word! (Ch 7:135 Quran)

Moses’ Story – Condensed and Quranic

Pharaoh became ruder and more arrogant. He proclaimed to his people. “Pharaoh is the only god.Has he not the kingdom of Egypt and rivers flowing under it?” He declared that Moses was a liar,a magician, and a poor man who did not wear even one bracelet of gold. Almighty Allah declared:

“And indeed We did sent Moses with Our Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) to Pharaoh and his chiefs (inviting them to Allah’s Religion of Islam). He said: “Verily! I am a Messenger of the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn and all that exists). But when he came to them with our Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) behold! They laughed at them. And not an Ayah (sign, etc.) We showed them but it was greater than its fellow, and We seized them with torment in order that they might turn from their polytheism to Allah’s Religion (Islamic Monotheism). And they said to Moses: “O you sorcerer! Invoke your Lord for us according to what He has covenanted with you. Verily, we shall guide ourselves aright.” But when We removed the torment from them, behold! They broke their covenant (that they will believe if We remove the torment for them). And Pharaoh proclaimed among his people, saying “O my people! Is not mine the dominion of Egypt, and the rivers flowing underneath me. See you not then? Am I not better than this one (Moses), and who is Mahin (has no honor nor any respect, and is weak, and despicable) and can scarcely express himself clearly? Why then are not golden bracelets bestowed on him, or angels sent along with him?” Thus he (Pharaoh) befooled and misled his people, and they obeyed him. Verily, they were Fasiqeen (rebellious, disobedient to Allah). So When they angered Us, We punished them, and drowned them all. And We made them a precedent (as a lesson for those coming after them), and an example to later generations. (Ch 43:46-56 Quran).

Pharaoh and his Amry Perish – Moses Allowed to Leave Egypt

It appeared that Pharaoh would never believe in Moses’ s message, nor would he stop the torture of the children of Israel. Therefore, Moses prayed to his Lord thus:

“Our Lord! You have indeed bestowed on Pharaoh and his chiefs splendor and wealth in the life of this world, our Lord! That they may lead men astray from Your Path. Our Lord! Destroy their wealth, and harden their hearts, so that they will not believe until they see the painful torment.” Allah said: “Verily, the invocation of you both is accepted. So you both keep to the Straight Way (keep on doing good deeds, and preaching Allah’s Message with patience), and follow not the path of those who know not (the truth, to believe in the Oneness of Allah, and also to believe in the Reward of Allah: Paradise etc.).” (Ch 10:88-89 Quran)

Allah inspired Moses to conduct his people of Egypt, but only a few of his people believed in his message. Allah revealed:

“But none believed in Moses except the offspring of his people, because of the fear of Pharaoh and his chiefs lest they should persecute them; and verily, Pharaoh was an arrogant tyrant on the earth, he was indeed one of the Musrifeen (polytheists, sinners, and transgressors, those who give up the truth and follow the evil, and commit all kinds of great sins). And Moses said: “O my people! If you have believed in Allah, then put your trust in Him if you are Muslims (those who submit to Allah’s Will).” They said: “In Allah we put our trust. Our Lord! Make us not a trial for the folk who are zalimeen (polytheists, and wrong-doing) (do not make them overpower us). And save us by Your Mercy from the disbelieving folk.” (Ch 10:83-86 Quran).

Almighty Allah decided to put an end to Pharaoh’s crimes after He had given him several chances. Allah commanded Moses to depart, and the children of Israel received reluctant permission from the Pharaoh to go out of the city for the feast. They prepared themselves to leave Egypt. This later became known as Exodus. They carried with them their jewels and borrowed a lot of jewels from the Egyptians.

The Pharaoh Learns of the Believer’s Escape

In the darkness of night, Moses led his people towards the Red Sea, and in the morning they reached the beach. By then Pharaoh was aware of their departure, so he mobilized a huge army to pursue them.

The Parting of the Red Sea

The impatient children of Israel soon became agitated and Joshua (Yusha), Ibn Nun, exclaimed:

“In front of us is this impassable barrier, the sea, and behind us the enemy; surely death cannot be avoided!”

Moses replied that he would wait for further guidance from Allah. These words filled them with some hope, but man is always impatient for results: they were willing to surrender themselves back into slavery. At that moment Allah revealed to Moses: “Smite the sea with your staff!” Moses did as he was commanded. A fierce wind blew, the sun shone brightly, and in a flash the sea parted, the crests of the waves standing like mountains on each side. Moses led his people across. This miracle proved Moses’s oft-repeated claim. “Verily! My Lord is with me!” As they looked back, they saw Pharaoh and his army approaching, about to take the very path which had been opened for them. In great fear and panic, they pleaded with Moses to ask Allah to close the sea. However, Allah commanded Moses not to smite the sea with his staff again, for Allah’s decree was already in action.

The Death of the Pharaoh

Pharaoh and his army had seen the miracle, how the sea had parted, but being the pretender that he was, Pharaoh turned to his men and proclaimed: “Look! The sea has opened at my command so that I may follow those rebels and arrest them!” They rushed across the parted waters, and when they were midway, Allah commanded the sea to return to its former state. Terror-stricken Pharaoh, realizing his end had come, declared out of fear: “I believe that there is no god worthy of worship except Allah in Whom the children of Israel believe, and I am of those who surrender to Him.” But Allah did not accept this declaration from the tyrant, and the waters closed over him, drowning him and his entire army.

Almighty Allah narrated:

“And We inspired Moses, saying: “Take away My slaves by night, verily, you will be pursued.”Then Pharaoh sent callers to all the cities. Saying: “Verily! These indeed are but a small band.And verily, they have done what has enraged us; but we are host all assembled, amplyfore-warned.”So, We expelled them from gardens and springs, treasures, and every kind of honorable place.Thus (We turned them Pharaoh’s people) out, and We caused the children of Israel to inheritthem.So they pursued them at sunrise. And when the two hosts saw each other, the people of Mosessaid: “We are sure to be overtaken.”Moses said: “Nay, verily! With me is my Lord, He will guide me.”Then We inspired Moses saying: “Strike the sea with your stick.” And it parted, and eachseparate (part of that sea water) became like the huge, firm mass of a mountain.Then We brought near the others (Pharaoh’s party) to that place. And We saved Moses and allthose with him. Then We drowned the others. Verily! In this is indeed a sign (or a proof), yetmost of them are not believers. And verily, your Lord! He is truly the All-Mighty, the MostMerciful.” (Ch 26:52-68 Quran)

Moses’ People Escape and Pharaoh’s Death – Quranic

In another surah Almighty Allah narrated:

“And We took the children of Israel across the sea, and Pharaoh with his hosts followed them in oppression and enmity, till when drowning overtook him, he sai: “I believe that La ilaha illa huwa (none has the right to be worshipped but) He, in whom the children of Israel believe, and I am one of the Muslims (those who submit to Allah’s Will).” Now (you believe) while you refused to believe before and you were one of the mufsideen (evildoers, corrupts, etc.). So this day We shall deliver your dead body out from the sea that you maybe a sign to those who come after you! And verily, many among mankind are heedless or our Ayah (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.). (Ch 10:90-92 Quran)

The curtain fell on Pharaoh’s tyranny, and the waves threw his corpse up to the western seashore. The Egyptians saw him and knew that their god whom they worshipped and obeyed were mere slaves who could not keep death away from their own necks.

The Moses’ People Desire an Idol

In spite of Pharaoh’s death, he left a bad influence on the souls of the children of Israel. It was difficult for the years of oppression and intense humilty to pass easily. He had made them accustomed to humbling themselves and submitting to someone other than Allah. he had so suppressed their souls and spoiled their nature that they began to torture Moses out of ignorance and obstinacy.

The miracle of the parting of the sea was still fresh in their minds, damp sea sands were still stuck on their soles, when they passed by a people worshipping idols. Instead of manifesting their indignation at the idolaters’ oppression of the intellect by celebrating the praises of Allah for His guidance, they looked to Moses for him to specify a god for them to worship as those other people did. They were jealous of the other people and their idols, and they desired the same. They missed the ancient idolatry which they had lived with during the reign of Pharaoh.

Moses’ People Desire an Idol – Quranic

Allah the Exalted revealed:

“And We brought the Children of Israel (with safety) across the sea, and they came upon a people devoted to some of their idols (in worship). They said: “O Mûsa (Moses)! Make for us an ilâhan (a god) as they have âliha (gods).” He said: “Verily, you are a people who know not (the Majesty and Greatness of Allâh and what is obligatory upon you, i.e. to worship none but Allâh Alone, the One and the Only God of all that exists).” [Mûsa (Moses) added:] “Verily, these people will be destroyed for that which they are engaged in (idols-worship). And all that they are doing is in vain.” He said: “Shall I seek for you an Ilâhan (a God) other than Allâh, while He has given you superiority over the ‘Alamîn (mankind and jinns of your time).” And (remember) when We rescued you from Fir’aun’s (Pharaoh) people, who were afflicting you with the worst torment, killing your sons and letting your women live. And in that was a great trial from your Lord.” (Ch. 7: 138-141)

The Favours of Allah on Moses’ People

The children of Israel were favoured with Allah’s grace and bounty. They were saved from oppression and had witnessed the drowning of their cruel ruler Pharaoh. When they needed water in the dry land, Allah commanded Moses to strike a rock, which parted and sent forth twelve springs of water for the twelve different tribes so that they need not dispute over a shortage of water. Allah also kept the skies cloudy to protect them from the scorching sun. To relieve their hunger, manna (the dried exudate of certain plants) and quail were provided for them.

In spite of Allah’s generousity, the mean spirited ones began to stir Moses’ people to object that they were disgusted with this food; they desires onions, garlic, beans, and lentils, which were traditional Egyptian foods. That is why the children of Israel asked Prophet Moses to pray to Allah to make the earth produce these foods. Moses again admonished them for oppressing themselves and for their desire to return to a life of humiliation in Egypt. He also pointed out that they were ungrateful for the bet and most abundant food. They wanted the worst instead of the best.

Allah’s Favours on Moses’ People – Quranic

Allah the Exalted said:

” Remember when Moses asked for water for his people, We said: “Strike the stone with your stick.” Then gushed forth therefrom twelve springs. Each group of people knew its own place for water. “Eat and drink of what which Allah had provided and do not act corruptly, making mischief on the earth.” And remember when you said: “O Moses! We cannot endure one kind of food. So invoke your Lord for us to b ring forth for us of what the earth grows, its herbs, its cucumbers, its Fum (wheat, or garlic), its lentils and its onions.” He said: “Would you exchange that which is better for that which is lower? Go you down to any town and you shall find what you want!” (Ch 2:60-61 Quran).

The Cowardice of Moses’ People

Allah had also directed Moses to lea them to the Promised Land (Palestine) which had been promised to Abraham as a land in which the pious and Allah-fearing of his offspring would live and uphold Allah’s law. The children of Israel were an ungrateful people. In spite of all of Allah’s favors, they could not stay away from evil and continued to reject Allah’s Laws. When Moses ordered them to conquer the town of the Canaanites the Hittites (their enemies who had hounded them), the children of Israel were cowardly and made excuses: “O Moses, a great people dwell therein, We will not go in unless they leave.” Ancient books tell that they were six hundred thousand men. Moses did not find among them but two men who were ready to fight. These two said to the people: “Once we enter through the door, Allah will make us victorious.” However, all the children of Israel were an incarnation of cowardice and quivered from within.

Allah Keeps Moses’ People Wandering

Moses knew that his people were fit for nothing. Pharaoh was dead, but his effect upon their souls still remained. Their recovery needed a long period of time. Moses returned to his Lord, telling Him that he was responsible only for the actions of himself and his brother. He prayed to his Lord to judge between his people and himself. Allah the Exalted issued His judgment against this generation whose nature was corrupted by the Egyptians: they must wander restlessly in the wilderness until this generation had died or become senile and had created another generation, a generation which had not been defeated from within and which could fight and score victory.

The Cowardice of Moses’ People – Quranic

Almighty Allah revealed:

” And remember when Moses said to his people: “O my people! Remember the Favor of Allah to you, when He made Prophets among you, made you kings, and gave you what He had not give to any other among the Alamin (mankind and jinn), in the past. O my people! Enter the holy land (Palestine) which Allah has assigned to you and turn not back in flight for then you will be returned as losers.” They said: “O Moses! In it (this holy land) are a people of great strength, and we shall never enter it, till they leave it; when they leave, then we will enter.” Two men of those who feared Allah and in whom Allah had His Grace said: “Assault them through the gate, for when you are in, victory will be yours, and put your trust in Allah if you are believers indeed.” They said: “O Moses! We shall never enter it as long as they are there. So go you, and your Lord and fight you two, we are sitting right here.” (Ch. 5: 20-24)

Moses’ People are Kept Wandering – Quranic

He (Moses) said: “O my Lord! I have power only over myself and my brother, so separate us from the people who are the Fasiqeen (rebellious and disobedient to Allah)!” Allah said: “Therefore it (this holy land) is forbidden to them for forty years; in distraction they will wander through the land. So be not sorrowful over the people who are the Fasiqeen (rebellious and disobedient to Allah).” (Ch 5:20-26 Quran)

Moses Fasts for Forty Days

The days of restless wandering began. Each day ended where it began and began where it ended. They started walking to no destination, day and night, morning and evening. They entered Sinai. Moses came to the same place where he had spoke to Allah for the first time. He appealed to Allah for guidance in judging over his people. Allah instructed him to purify himself by fasting for thirty days, after which he was to go to Mount Sinai, where he would be given the law by which he would govern his people. The ancients said that after Moses fasted thirty days, he hated to speak to his Lord because of the odor of his mouth. He ate a plant of the earth and then his Lord said to him: “Why did you break your fast?” Moses said: “O my Lord, I disliked to speak to You with my mouth not having a pleasant smell.” Allah said: “Do you not know, Moses, the odor of the faster’s mouth is more fragrant to Me than the rose. Go back and fast ten days; then come back to Me.” Moses did what Allah commanded.

Moses Speaks to Allah – Quranic

Almighty Allah declared:

” And We appointed for Moses thirty nights and added to the period ten more, and he completedthem term, appointed by his Lord, of forty nights. And Moses said to his brother Aaron:”Replace me among my people, act in the Right Way (by ordering the people to obey Allah andto worship Him Alone) and follow not the way of the Mufsideen (mischief makers).”And when Moses came the time and place appointed by Us, and his Lord spoke to him, he said:”O my Lord! Show me (yourself), that I may look upon You.”

Allah said: “You cannot see Me, but look upon the mountain if it stands still in its place then you shall see Me.” So when his Lord appeared to the mountain, He made it collapse to dust, and Moses fell down unconscious. Then when he recovered his senses he said: “Glory be to You, I turn to You in repentance and I am the first of the believers.”

Allah said: “O Moses, I have chosen you above men by My Messages, and by My speaking to you. So hold that which I have given you and be of the grateful.”

And We wrote for him on the Tablets the lesson to be drawn from all things and the explanation of all things (and said): “hold unto these with firmness, and enjoin your people to take the better therein, I shall show you the home of Al Fasiqeen (the rebellious, disobedient to Allah). I shall turn away from My Ayat (verses from the Quran), those who behave arrogantly on the earth, in a wrongful manner, and even if they see all the Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) they will not believe in them. And if they see the way of righteousness (monotheism, piety, and good deeds), they will not adopt it as the Way, but if they see the way of error (polytheism, crimes, and evil deeds), they will adopt that way, that is because they have rejected Our Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) and were heedless to learn a lesson from them. Those who deny Our Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) and the Meeting in the Hereafter (Day of Resurrection), vain are their deeds. Do they expect to be rewarded with anything except what they used to do?” (Ch 7:142-147 Quran)

The Ten Commandments

The Earlier scholars said that The Ten Commandments of the Torah are included in two verses of the Quran.

Say: “Come, I will recite what your Lord has prohibited you from: Join not anything in worship with Him; be good and dutiful to your parents; kill not your children because of poverty- We provide sustenance for you and for them; come not near to shameful sins (illegal sexual intercourse, etc.) whether committed openly or secretly; and kill not anyone whom Allah has forbidden, except for a just cause (according to Islamic law). This He has commanded you that you may understand. And come not near to the orphan’s property, except to improve it, until he or she attains the age of full strength; and give full measure and full weight with justice. We burden not any person but that which he can bear. And whenever you give your word (judge between men or give evidences, etc.) , say the truth even if a near relative is concerned, and fulfill the Covenant of Allah. This He commands you, that you may remember.” (Ch 6:151-152 Quran).

The Story of Golden Calf – Moses’ People Turn to Idolatry

Moses (pbuh) had been gone for forty days and his people were becoming restless, for they did not know that Allah had extended his time by a further ten days. Samiri, a man who was inclined towards evil, suggested that they find themselves another guide, as Moses had broken his promise. He said to them: “In order to find true guidance, you need a god, and I shall provide one for you.” So he collected all their gold jewelry, dug a hole in which he placed the lot, and lit a huge fire to melt it down. During the casting, he threw a handful of dust, making actions like a magician’s to impress the ignorant. From the molten metal he fashioned a golden calf. It was hollow, and the wind passing through it produced a sound. Since superstition was imbedded in their past, they quickly linked the strange sound to something supernatural, as if it were a living god. Some of them accept the golden calf as their god.

Aaron Tries to Reason with the Idolaters

Moses’s brother Aaron (pbuh), who acted as their leader in Moses’ s absence, was grieved andspoke up: “O my people! You have been deceived. Your Lord is the Most Beneficent. Follow andobey me.”They replied: “We shall stop worshipping this god only if Moses returns.”Those who had remained steadfast in belief separated themselves from the pagans.

Moses Sees the Idolaters

On his return Moses saw his people singing and dancing around the calf statue. Furious at their paganistic ritual, he flung down the Tablet of the Law he was carrying for them. He tugged Aaron’s beard and his hair, crying: “What held you back when you saw them going astray? Whey did you not fight this corruption?” Aaron replied: “O son of my mother, let go of my beard! The fold considered me weak and were about to kill me. So make not the enemies rejoice over me, nor put me among the people who are wrong-doers.” Moses’ s anger began to subside when he understood Aaron’s helplessness, and he began to handle the situation calmly and wisely.

Almighty Allah narrated:

“They said: “We broke not the promise to you, of our own will, but we were made to carry the weight of the ornaments of the Pharaoh’s people, then we cast them into the fire, and that was what As-Samiri suggested.” Then he took out of the fire, for them a statue of a calf which seemed to low. They said: “This is your ilah (god), and the ilah (god) of Moses, but Moses has forgotten (his god).” Did they not see that it could not return them a word (for answer), and that it had no power either to harm them or to do them good? And Aaron indeed had said to them beforehand: “O my people! You are being tried in this, and verily, your Lord is Allah the Most Beneficent, so follow me and obey my order.” They said: “We will not stop worshipping it (the calf) until Moses returns to us.” (Ch 20:87-91 Quran)

The Conversation Between Allah and Moses – Quranic

Allah the Exalted revealed some of the dialogue that took place between Him and Moses on Mount Sinai:

“And what made you hasten from your people, O Moses?” He said: “They are close on my footsteps, and I hastened to You, O my Lord! That you might be pleased.” Allah said: “Verily! We have tried your people in your absence, and As-Samiri has led them astray.” Then Moses returned to his people in a state of anger and sorrow. He said: “O my people! Did not your Lord promise you a fair promise? Did then the promise seem to you long in coming? Or did you desire the Wrath should descend from your Lord on you, so you broke your promise to me (disbelieving in Allah and worshipping the calf)?” (Ch 20: 83-86 Quran)

Moses Sees the Idolators – Quranic

Allah the Exalted revealed what happened further on Moses’s return:

“Moses said: “O Aaron! What stopped you when you saw them going astray, that you followedme not (according to my advice to you)? Have you then disobeyed my order?”He (Aaron) said; “O my son of my mother! Seize me not by my beard, nor by my head! Verily, Ifeared lest you should say: ‘You have caused a division among the children of Israel, and youhave not respected my word!'”(Moses) said: “And what is the matter with you, O Samiri? (why did you do so?)”Samiri said: “I saw what you saw not, so I took a handful of dust from the hoof print of theMessenger (Gabriel’s horse) and threw it (into the fire in which were put the ornaments of thePharaoh’s people, or into the calf). Thus my inner-self suggested to me.”Moses said: “Then go away! And verily, your punishment in this life will be that you will say:’Touch me not’ (you will live alone exiled away from mankind); and verily (for a future torment),you have a promise that will not fail. And look at your ilah (god), to which you have beendevoted. We will certainly burn it, and scatter its particles in the sea.” (Ch 20:83-98 Quran)

The Idolaters’ Punishment

However, the punishment which was imposed upon the calf worshippers was severe, death.

“Remember when Moses said to his people: “O my people! Verily, you have wronged yourselves by worshipping the calf. So turn in repentance to your Creator and kill yourselves (the innocent kill the wrong doers among you), that will be better for you in the Sight of your Creator.” Then He accepted your repentance. Truly, He is the One Who accepts repentance, the Most Merciful. (Ch 2:54 Quran)

Therefore, the crime of worshipping the calf did not pass unpunished. Moses commanded the elite of the children of Israel to pray to Allah for forgiveness and demonstrate their repentanc. He chose seventy en out of them and ordered them: “Rush towards Allah and repent for what you did and ask His forgiveness for what you left.”

Moses’ People Demand to See Allah

Moses returned to Mount Sinai with the seventy elders and there he communicated with Allah. The elders heard Moses speaking with his Lord. (Allah spoke to Moses directly.) This was, perhaps, the last miracle that they would see, and it was hoped that it would be sufficient enough to convey the religion to their hearts forever. However, the seventy elite who heard the miracles were dissatisfied. They said to Moses:

“O Moses! We shall never believe in you till we see Allah plainly.” (Ch 2:35 Quran)

This was a tragedy that amazes one. It was a tragedy that indicated those who were hard-hearted and who continued to hold onto sensual and material concerns. Their stubborn demand was rewarded with punishing lightning bolts and a violent quaking that stupefied their souls and bodies at once, leaving them dead.

Moses Prays for His People

Moses knew what had happened to the seventy elite and was filled with sorrow. He prayed to hisLord, entreating Him to forgive them, for they were fools. Foolishness is only expiated by death.Allah forgave the elders and revived them after their death. Allah the Exalted declared:

“Moses chose out of his people seventy of the best men for Our appointed time and place of meeting, and when they were seized with a violent earthquake, he said: “O my Lord, if it had been Your Will, You could have destroyed them and me before; would You destroy us for the deeds of the foolish ones among us? It is only Your Trial by which You lead astray whom You will, and keep guided whom You will. You are our Wali (Protector), so forgive us and have Mercy on us, for You are the Best of Those who forgive. And ordain for us good in this world, and in the Hereafter. Certainly we have turned unto You.” He said (as to ) My Punishment I afflict therewith whom I will and My Mercy embraces all things. That (Mercy) I shall ordain for those who are the Muttaqun and give Zakat; and those who believe in our Ayat (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.); Those who follow the Messenger, the Prophet who can neither read nor write (Muhammad) whom they find written with them in the Torah and the Gospel, (Ch 7:155-157 Quran , Deut. 18:18; Psl. 118:22-23; Isa 42:1-13; Hab, 3:3-4, Matt 21:42-43, Jn 14:16-17, 26-28, 16:7-14) he commands them for Al Ma’ruf (Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam has ordained); and forbids them from Al Munkar (disbelief, polytheism, of all kinds, and all that Islam has forbidden); he allows them as lawful At Tayyibat (all good and lawful) as regards things, deeds beliefs, persons, food, etc. and prohibits them as unlawful Al Khabaith (all evil and unlawful as regards things, deeds, beliefs, persons, food, etc.), he releases them from their heavy burdens (of Allah’s Covenant), and from the fetters (bindings) that were upon them. So those who believe in him (Muhammad), honor him, help him, and follow the light (the Quran) which has been sent down with him, it is they who will be successful. (Ch 7:155-157 Quran)

The Story of Israelites and the Cow – The Pious Man and His Son

Moses (pbuh) stayed among his people calling them to Allah. It seems their souls were uneasy in a way that the observant eye could not mistake. Their obstinacy and chattering about what has become known as “The Story of the Cow” was unwarranted. This topic did not need so many negotiations between Moses and the people, nor did it need all their bias.

It was said that among the children of Israel there lived a pious man. He was poor but very careful about how he earned the living; it had to be honestly earned. Everything that he did was done for the sake of Allah, never for selfish gain. On his deathbed his last words were: “O Allah, I place my wife, my little son, and my only possession, a calf, in Your care.” Strangely, he asked his wife to lead the calf to the forest and leave it there. He did this because he did not trust the children of Israel, for they were a selfish and greedy folk.

After a few years when the boy had grown up, his mother told him: “Your father has left you a calf in the trust of Allah. It must have grown into a cow by now.” The son was surprised. He did not know of any calf all these years and asked his mother where it was. She replied: “Be like your father and say: ‘I trust in Allah,’ then go look for it.”

With a rope in his hand, he went to the forest and prostrated himself before Allah: “O Allah, Lord of Abraham and Jacob and Job, return to me my father’s trust. ” As he raised his head, he saw a cow coming towards him. It stopped submissively beside him. He tied the rope around its neck and led it to his house. The cow would not allow anyone else come near it except the young man. The youth was as pious as his father. He earned his living by cutting wood. Whatever he earned he divided into three equal portions; one he gave to his mother, one he used for his needs, and the last he gave as charity. His nights, too, were divided into three parts; during the early part of the night he helped his mother, the middle part he devoted to the worship of Allah, and during the last part he rested.

The People Ask Questions About a Cow

About this a wealthy man died, leaving behind an only son, who inherited his father’s wealth. Hiscousins envied his good fortune, and secretly killed him so that they could inherit it.The dead boy’s other relatives came to the Prophet Moses (pbuh) and asked his help in tracing theboy’s murderer. Moses instructed them to slaughter a cow, remove its tongue and place it on thecorpse. This would reveal the murderer, he told them. They accused Moses of joking. He replied:”Allah forbid that I be foolish!” They questioned him about the type of cow they should slaughter,and he said: “This cow is neither young nor mature, but in between the two conditions, so do asyou have been commanded.”Instead of following his direction, they asked him more questions. “What color must it be?”He replied: “Verily, it is yellow in color.”They still were not satisfied with his answer and asked for more details. Moses replied: “It is anunyoked cow; it does not plow the soil nor water the tilth, and is entirely without marks.”

Moses’ People Find the Right Cow

They went out in search of such a cow. The only one that matched the description was the one owned by the orphaned youth. They met him on the way and asked the price for which he would sell his cow. He told them he would have to consult his mother first, so they accompanied him to his house and offered her three gold coins. She refused their offer, saying that the cow was worth much more.

They were on increasing their offer and the mother kept on refusing. Finally the urged the son to speak to his mother to be reasonable. He told them: “I will not sell the cow without my mother’s approval, even if you offered me its skin filled with gold!” On hearing this, his mother smiled and said: “Let that be the price: its skin filled with gold.” They realized that no other cow would do; they had to have it at any price. They agreed to buy the cow and paid with its skin filled with gold.

The People are Asked to Slaugter a Cow – Quranic

Allah the Almighty narrated:

“And remember when Moses said to his people: “Verily, Allah commands you that you slaughtera cow.”They said: “Do you make fun of us?”He said: “I take Allah’s Refuge from being among Al Jahileen (the ignorants or the foolish).”They said: “Call upon your Lord for us that He may make plain to us what it is!”He said: “He says, ‘Verily, it is a cow neither too old nor too young, but it is between the twoconditions, so do what you are commanded.”They said; “Call upon your Lord for us to make plain to us its color.”He said: “He says, ‘It is a yellow cow bright in its color, pleasing to the beholders.'”They said: “Call upon your Lord for us to make plain to us what it is. Verily to us all cows arealike, and surely, if Allah wills, we will be guided.”He (Moses) said: “He says, ‘It is a cow neither trained to till the soil nor water the fields, sound,having no other color except bright yellow.'”They said: “Now you have brought the truth.” So they slaughtered it though they were near to notdoing it.And remember when you killed a man and fell into dispute among yourselves to the crime. ButAllah brought forth that which you were hiding. So We said: “Strike him (the dead man) with apiece of it (the cow).” Thus Allah brings the dead to life and shows you His Ayat (proofs,evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) so that you may understand.Then after that your hearts were hardened and became as stone or even worse in hardness. Andindeed, there are stones out of which rivers gush forth, and indeed, there are of them stoneswhich fall down for fear of Allah. And Allah is not unaware of what you do. (Ch 2:67-74 Quran).

The Story of Moses and Al-Khidr – Moses Informed of a Wise Man

One day Moses (pbuh) delivered such an impressive sermon that all who heard it was deeply moved. Someone in the congregation asked: “O Messenger of Allah, is there another man on earth more learned than you?” Moses replied: “No!”, believing so, as Allah had given him the power of miracles and honored him with the Torah.

However, Allah revealed to Moses that no man could know all there is to know, nor would one messenger alone be the custodian of all knowledge. There would always be another who knew what others did not. Moses asked Allah: “O Allah, where is this man? I would like to meet him and learn from him.” He also asked for a sign to this person’s identity. Allah instructed him to take a live fish in a water filled vessel. When the fish disappeared, he would find the man he sought. Moses set out on his journey, accompanied by a young man who carried the vessel with the fish. They reached a place where two rivers met and decided to rest there. Instantly, Moses fell asleep.

Moses Finds Al-Khidr

While he was asleep, his companion saw the fish wriggle out of the vessel into the river and swim away. However, he forgot to relate the incident to Moses. When he awoke, they continued their journey until they were exhausted and hungry. Moses asked for his morning meal. Only then did his companion recall that the fish they had brought with them had gotten away. Hearing this, Moses exclaimed: “This is exactly what we are seeking!” They hurriedly retraced their steps to the place where the rivers met and where the fish had jumped out. There they found a man, his face partly covered with a hood. His bearing showed he was a saintly man. He was Al-Khidr, the guide.

Moses Finds Al-Khidr – Quranic

Allah the Almighty narrated:

“And remember when Moses said to his boy servant: “I will not give up (traveling) until I reachthe junction of the two seas or until I spend years and years in traveling.”But when they reached the junction of the two seas, they forgot their fish, and it took its waythrough the sea as in a tunnel. So when they had passed further on (beyond that fixed place),Moses said to his boy servant: “Bring us our morning meal; truly, we have suffered much fatiguein this, our journey.”He said: “Do you remember when we betook ourselves to the dock? I indeed forgot the fish, nonebut Satan made me forget to remember it. It took its course into the sea in a strange way!”Moses said: “That is what we have been seeking.” So they went back retracing their footsteps.Then they found one of Our slaves, unto whom We had bestowed mercy from Us, and whom Wehad taught knowledge from Us. (Ch. 18: 60-65)

Moses Speaks to Al-Khidr

Moses said to him (Khidr) “May I follow you so that you teach me something of that knowledge(guidance, and true path) which you have been taught by Allah?”He (Khidr) said: “Verily! You will not be able to have patience with me! And how can you havepatience about a thing which you know not?”

Moses said; “If Allah will, you will find me patience, and I will not disobey you in aught.”He (Khidr) said: “Then, if you follow me, ask me not about anything till I myself mention it toyou.”So they both proceeded, till, when they were in the ship, he (Khidr) scuttled it. Moses said:”Have you scuttled it in order to drown its people? Verily, you have done Imra- a Munkar (evil,bad, dreadful) thing.”He (Khidr) said: “Did I not tell you, that you would not be able to have patience with me?”Moses said: “Cal me not to account for what I forgot, and be not hard upon me for my affairwith you.”Then they both proceeded, till they met a boy, he (Khidr) killed him. Moses said: “Have youkilled an innocent person who had killed none? Verily, you have done Nukra a great Munkar(prohibited, evil dreadful) thing!”Khidr said: “Did I not tell you that you can have no patience with me?”Moses said: “If I ask you anything after this, keep me not in your company, you have received anexcuse from me.”Then they both proceeded, till, when they came to the people of a town, they asked them for food,but they refused to entertain them. Then they found therein a wall about to collapse and he(Khidr) set it up straight. Moses said: “If you had wished, surely you could have taken wages forit!”Khidr said: “This is the parting between me and you, I will tell you the interpretation of thosethings over which you were unable to hold patience.”As for the ship, it belonged to poor people working in the sea. So I wished to make a defectivedamage in it, as there was a king after them, who seized every ship by force. “And as for the boy, his parents were believers, and we feared lest he should oppress them byrebellion and disbelief. So we intended that their Lord should change him for them for one betterin righteousness and near to mercy.”And as for the wall, it belonged to two orphan boys in the town; and there was under it atreasure belonging to them; and their father was a righteous man, and your Lord intended thatthey should attain their age of full strength and take out their treasure as a mercy from yourLord. And I did it not of my own accord. That is the interpretation of those (things) over whichcould not hold patience. (Ch 18:66-82 Quran)

Moses Seeks Al-Khidr – Hadith

The story of Moses and Al-Khidr is also told in a hadith. Said Ibn Jubair said: “I said to Ibn’ Abbas, Nauf Al Bukah claims that Moses, the companion of Al Khidr, was not Moses (the Prophet) of the children of Israel, but some other Moses.’ Ibn Abbas said: ‘Allah’s enemy (Nauf) has told a lie. Ubai Ibn Kab told us that the Prophet (pbuh) said: “Once Moses stood up and addressed Bani Israel. He was asked who was the most learned man amongst the people. He said: “I.” Allah admonished him as he did not attribute absolute knowledge to Him (Allah). So, Allah said to him: “Yes, at the junction of the two seas there is a slave of Mine who is more learned than you.” Moses said; “O my Lord! How can I meet him?” Allah said: “Take a fish and put it in a large basket and you will find him at the place where you will lose the fish.” Moses took a fish and put it in a basket and proceeded along with his servant boy, Joshua (Yusha Ibn Nun), till they reached the rock where they laid their heads (lay down). Moses slept, and the fish, moving out of the basket, fell into the sea. It took its way into the sea straight as in a tunnel. Allah stopped the flow of water over the fish and it became like an arch (the Prophet pointed out this arch with his hands). They traveled the rest of the night, and the next day Moses said to his boy servant: “Give us our food, for indeed, we have suffered much fatigue in this journey of ours.” Moses did not feel tired till he crossed that place which Allah had ordered him to seek after. His boy said to him: “Do you know that when we were sitting near that rock, I forgot the fish, and none but Satan caused me to forget to tell you about it, and it took its course into the sea in an amazing way?” So there was a path for the fish and that astonished them. Moses said: “That was what we were seeking after.” So both of them retraced their footsteps till they reached the rock. There they saw a man lying covering with a garment.

Moses Talks to Al-Khidr – Hadith

Moses greeted him, and he replied saying: “How do people greet each other in your land?” Moses said: “I am Moses.” The man asked: “Moses of Bani Israel?” Moses said: “yes, I have come to you so that you may teach me from those things which Allah has taught you.” He said: “O Moses! I have some of the knowledge of Allah which Allah has taught me and which you do not know, wyou have some of the knowledge of Allah which Allah has taught you and which I do not know.” Moses asked: “May I follow you?” He said: “But you will not be able to remain patient with me, for how can you be patient about things which you will not be able to understand?” Moses said: “You will find me, if Allah so will, truly patient, and I will not disobey you in aught.”

So both of them set out walking along the seashore. A boat passed by them, and they asked the crew of the boat to take them on board. The crew recognized Al-Khidr, so they took them on board without fare. When they were on board the boat, a sparrow came and stood on the edge of the boat and dipped its beak once or twice into the sea. Al Khidr said to Moses: “O Moses! My knowledge and your knowledge have not decreased Allah’s knowledge except as much as this sparrow has decreased the water of the sea with its beak.” Then suddenly Al Khidr took an adz and pulled up a plank, and Moses did not notice it till he had pulled up a plank with the adz. Moses said to him: “What have you done? They took us on board charging us nothing; yet you have intentionally made a hole in their boat as to drown its passengers. Verily, you have done a dreadful thing.” Al Khidr replied: “Did I not tell you that you would not be able to remain patient with me?” Moses replied: “Do not blame me for what I have forgotten, and do not be hard upon me for my fault.” So the first excuse of Moses was that he had forgotten.

When they had left the sea, they passed by a boy playing with other boys. Al Khidr took a hold of the boy’s head and plucked it with his fingertips as if he were plucking some fruit. Moses said to him: “Have you killed an innocent person who has not killed any person? You have really done a horrible thing.” Al Khidr said: “Did I not tell you that you could not remain patient with me?” Moses said: “If I ask you about anything after this, don’t accompany me. You have received an excuse from me.”

Then both of them went on till they came to some people of a village, and they asked its inhabitants for food but they refused to entertain them as guests. Then they saw therein a wall which was just going to collapse and Al Khidr repaired it just by touching it with his hands. (Sufyan, the sub-narrator, gestured with his hands, illustrating how Al Khidr passed his hands over the wall upwards.) Moses said: “These are the people whom we have called on, but they neither gave us food, nor entertained us as guests, yet you have repaired their wall. If you had wished, you could have taken wages for it.” Al Khidr said: “This is the parting between you and me, and I shall tell you the explanation of those things on which you could not remain patient.” The Prophet (pbuh) added: “We wish that Moses could have remained patient by virtue of which Allah might have told us more about their story.” (Sufyan, the sub-narrator, said that the Prophet (pbuh) said: “May Allah bestow His Mercy on Moses! If he had remained patient, we would have been told further about their case.” (Sahih Al-Bukhari)

The Death of Moses – Moses’ Suffering

Moses (pbuh) suffered terribly from his people and endured much for the sake of Allah.

Abdullah Ibn Umar narrated: “Once the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) distributed something (among his companions). A man said: “This distribution has not been done (with justice) seeking Allah’s Countenance.’ I went to the Prophet (pbuh) and told him of that. He became so angry that I saw the signs of anger on his face. Then he said: ‘May Allah bestow His Mercy on Moses, for he was harmed more (in a worse manner) than this; yet he endured patiently.'” (Sahih Al-Bukhari) The children of Israel mistreated Moses (pbuh) a lot. His agony was not limited to mutiny, stupidity, chattering, ignorance, and idolatry; it exceeded this and went as far as inflicting personal harm on him. Almighty Allah commanded:

“O you who believe! Be not like those who annoyed Moses, but Allah cleared him of that which they alleged, and he was honorable in Allah’s sight! (Ch 33:69 Quran).

Allah Clears Moses of False Rumors

Abu Hurairah narrated that Allah’s Messenger Muhammad (pbuh) said: “Prophet Moses was a shy person and used to cover his body completely because of his extensive shyness. One of the children of Israel hurt him by saying: ‘He covers his body in this way only because of some defect in his skin, either leprosy or scrotal hernia, or he has some other defect.’

Allah wished to clear Moses of what they said about him, so one day while Moses was in seclusion, he took his clothes and put them on a s tone and started taking a bath. When he had finished the bath, he moved towards his clothes so as to take them, but the stone took his clothes and fled. Moses picked up his stick and ran after the stone saying: ‘O stone! Give me my garment!’ till he reached a group of children of Israel who saw him naked then, and found him in the best shape of what Allah had created, and Allah cleared him of what they had accused him of. The stone stopped there, and Moses took and put on his garment and started hitting the stone with his stick. By Allah, the stone still has some traces of the hitting, three, four, or five marks. This was what Allah the Almighty refers to in His saying:

“O you who believe! Be not like those who annoyed Moses, but Allah cleared him of that which they alleged, and he was honorable in Allah’s sight!” (Ch 33:69 Quran) (Sahih Al-Bukhari)

The Death of Aaron

Aaron (pbuh) died shortly before Moses (pbuh). His people were still wandering in the wilderness when he died.

The Death of Moses

Abu Hurairah narrated: “The Angel of Death was sent to Moses (pbuh). When he came to Moses, Moses slapped him on the eye. The Angel returned to his Lord and said: ‘You have sent me to a slave who does not want to die.’ Allah said: ‘Return to him and tell him to put his hand on the back of an ox and for every hair that will come under it, he will be granted one year of life.’ Moses said: ‘O Lord! What will happen after that?’ Allah replied: ‘then death.’ Moses said: ‘Let it come now!’ Moses then requested Allah to let him die close to the Holy Land so that he would be at a distance of a stone’s throw from it.” Abu Hurairah added: “Allah’s Messenger (pbuh) said: ‘If I were there, I would show you his grave below the red sandhill on the side of the road.'” (Sahih Al Bukhari)

Moses (pbuh), Prophet of Allah and the one to whom Allah spoke to directly, met his death with a contented soul and a faithful heart that looked forward to righteousness and made haste to meet with Him Who bore tidings of peace.

Description of Muhammad PBUH

Muhammad (pbuh) was born in Mecca ( Makkah), Arabia, on Monday, 12 Rabi’ Al-Awal (2 August A.D. 570). His mother, Aminah, was the daughter of Wahb Ibn Abdu Manaf of the Zahrah family. His father, ‘Abdullah, was the son of Abdul Muttalib. His genealogy has been traced to the noble house of Ishmael, the son of Prophet Abraham in about the fortieth descend. Muhammad’s PBUH father died before his birth. Before he was six years old his mother died, and the doubly orphaned Muhammad PBUH PBUH was put under the charge of his grandfather Abdul Muttalib who took the most tender care of him. But the old chief died two years afterwards. On his deathbed he confided to his son Abu Talib the charge of the little orphan.

Journey to Busra – Christian Monk merits Muhammad PBUH

When Muhammad PBUH was twelve years old, he accompanied his uncle Abu Talib on a mercantile journey to Syria, and they proceeded as far as Busra. The journey lasted for some months. It was at Busra that the Christian monk Bahira met Muhammad PBUH. He is related to have said to Abu Talib: ‘Return with this boy and guard him against the hatred of the Jews, for a great career awaits your nephew.”

Muhammad’s PBUH honest and honorable character

After this journey, the youth of Muhammad PBUH seems to have been passed uneventfully, but all authorities agree in ascribing to him such correctness of manners and purity of morals as were rare among the people of Mecca. The fair character and the honorable bearing of the unobtrusive youth won the approbation of the citizens of Mecca, and b y common consent he received the title of “Al Ameen,” The Faithful. In his early years, Muhammad PBUH was not free from the cares of life. He had to watch the flocks of his uncle, who, like the rest of the Bani Hashim, had lost the greater part of his wealth.

Solitary lifestyle of Muhammad’s PBUH PBUH youth

From youth to manhood he led an almost solitary life. The lawlessness rife among the Meccans, the sudden outbursts of causeless and bloody quarrels among the tribes frequenting the Fair of Okadh (The Arabian Olympia), and the immorality and skepticism of the Quraish, naturally caused feelings of pity and sorrow in the heart of the sensitive youth. Such scenes of social misery and religious degradation were characteristic of a depraved age.

Muhammad’s PBUH marriage to Khadijah

When Muhammad PBUH was twenty five years old, he traveled once more to Syria as a factor of a noble and rich Quraishi widow named Khadijah; and, having proved himself faithful in the commercial interests of that lady, he was soon rewarded with her hand in marriage. This marriage proved fortunate and singularly happy. Khadijah was much the senior of her husband, but in spite of the disparity of age between them, the most tender devotion on both sides existed. This marriage gave him the loving heart of a woman who was ever ready to console him in his despair and to keep alive within him the feeble, flickering flame of hope when no man believed in him and the world appeared gloomy in his eyes.

Troubled, lawless times for the Makkans

Until he reached thirty years of age, Muhammad PBUH was almost a stranger to the outside world. Since the death of his grandfather, authority in Mecca was divided among the ten senators who constituted the governing body of the Arabian Commonwealth. There was no such accord among them as to ensure the safety of individual rights and property. Though family relations afforded some degree of protection to citizens, yet strangers were frequently exposed to persecution and oppression. In many cases they were robbed, not only of their goods, but even of their wives and daughters. At the instigation of the faithful Muhammad PBUH, an old league called the Federation of Fudul, i.e., favors was revived with the object of repressing lawlessness and defending every weak individual – whether Meccan or stranger, free or slave – against any wrong or oppression to which he might be the victim within the territories of Mecca.

When Muhammad PBUH reached thirty-five years, he settled by his judgment a grave dispute, which threatened to plunge the whole of Arabia into a fresh series of her oft-recurring wars. In rebuilding the Sacred House of the Ka’ba in A.D. 605, the question arose as to who should have the honor of raising the black stone, the most holy relic of that House, into its proper place. Each tribe claimed that honor. The senior citizen advised the disputants to accept for their arbitrator the first man to enter from a certain gate. The proposal was agreed upon, and the first man who entered the gate was Muhammad PBUH “Al-Ameen.” His advice satisfied all the contending parties. He ordered the stone to be placed on a piece of cloth and each tribe to share the honor of lifting it up by taking hold of a part of the cloth. The stone was thus deposited in its place, and the rebuilding of the House was completed without further interruption.

Muhammad PBUH thwarts intention of the Romans to control Makka

It is related that, about this time, a certain Usman, Ibn Huwairith, supported by Byzantine gold, made an attempt to convert the territory of Hijaz into a Roman dependency, but the attempt failed, chiefly through the instrumentality of Muhammad PBUH.

Kindness and generousity shown to the people

These are nearly all the public acts related by historians in which Muhammad PBUH took part in the first fifteen years of his marriage to Khadijah. As for his private life he is described to have been ever helpful to the needy and the helpless. His uncle Abu Talib had fallen into distress through his endeavors to maintain the old position of his family. Muhammad PBUH, being rather rich at this time by his alliance with Khadijah, tried to discharge part of the debt of gratitude and obligation which he owed to his uncle by undertaking the bringing up and education of his son ‘Ali. A year later he adopted ‘Akil, another of his uncle’s sons.

Khadijah bore Muhammad PBUH three sons and four daughters. All the males died in childhood, but in loving ‘Ali he found much consolation. About this time, Muhammad PBUH set a good example of kindness, which created a salutary effect upon his people. His wife Khadijah had made him a present of young slave named Zaid Ibn Haritha, who had been brought as a captive to Mecca and sold to Khadijah. When Haritha heard that Muhammad PBUH possessed Zaid, he came to Mecca and offered a large sum for his ransom. Whereupon Muhammd said: “Let Zaid come here, and if he chooses to go with you, take him without ransom; but if it be his choice to stay with me, why should I not keep him?’ Zaid, being brought into Muhammad’s PBUH PBUH presence, declared that he would stay with his master, who treated him as if he was his only son. Muhammad PBUH no sooner heard this than he took Zaid by the hand and led him to the black stone of Ka’ba, where he publicly adopted him as his son, to which the father acquiesced and returned home well satisfied. Henceforward Zaid was called the son of Muhammad PBUH.

Muhammad PBUH was now approaching his fortieth year, and his mind was ever-engaged in profound contemplation and reflection. Before him lay his country, bleeding and torn by fratricidal wars and intolerable dissension’s; his people, sunk in barbarism, addicted to the observation of rites and superstitions, were, with all their desert virtues, lawless and cruel. His two visits to Syria had opened to him a scene of unutterable moral and social desolation, rival creeds and sects tearing each other to pieces, carrying their hatred to the valleys and deserts of Hijaz, and rending the townships of Arabia with their quarrels and bitterness.

Allah’s Divine Inspiration touches Muhammad PBUH

For years after his marriage, Muhammad PBUH had been accustomed to secluding himself in a cave in Mount Hira, a few miles from Mecca. To this cave he used to go for prayer and meditation, sometimes alone and sometime with his family. There, he often spent the whole nights in deep thought and profound communion with the Unseen yet All-Knowing Allah of the Universe. It was during one of those retirements and in the still hours of the night, when no human sympathy was near, that an angel came to him to tell him that he was the Messenger of Allah sent to reclaim a fallen people to the knowledge and service of their Lord. Renowned compilers of authentic traditions of Islam agree on the following account of the first revelations received by the Prophet. Muhammad PBUH would seclude himself in the cave of Mount Hira and worship three days and nights. He would, whenever he wished, return to his family at Mecca and then go back again, taking wihim the necessities of life. Thus he continued to return to Khadijah from time to time until one day the revelation came down to him and the Angel Gabriel (Jibreel) appeared to him and said:

“Read!”

But as Muhammad PBUH was illiterate, having never received any instruction in reading or writing, he said to the angel:

“I am not a reader.”

The angel took a hold of him and squeezed him as much as he could bear, and then said again:

“Read!”

Then Prophet said:

“I am not a reader.”

The Angel again seized the Prophet and squeezed him and said:

“Read! In the Name of Your Lord, Who has created (all that exists), has created a man from a clot (a piece of thick coagulated blood). Read! And your Lord is the Most Generous, Who has taught (the writing) by the pen, has taught man that which he knew not.” (Ch 96:1-4 Quran).

Then the Prophet repeated the words with a trembling heart. He returned to Khadijah from Mount Hira and said: “Wrap me up! Wrap me up!” She wrapped him in a garment until his fear was dispelled. He told Khadijah what had occurred and that he was becoming either a soothsayer or one smitten with madness. She replied: “Allah forbid! He will surely not let such a thing happen, for you speak the truth, you are faithful in trust, you bear the afflictions of the people, you spend in good works what you gain in trade, you are hospitable and you assist your fellow men. Have you seen anything terrible?” Muhammad PBUH replied: “Yes,” and told her what he had seen. Whereupon, Khadijah said: “Rejoice, O dear husband and be cheerful. He is Whose hands stands Khadijah’s life bears witness to the truth of this fact, that you will be the prophet to this people.”

Khadijah consults cousin knowledgeable of Scriptures; confirmation of Prophet

After this experience Khadijah went to her cousin Waraqa Ibn Naufal, who was old and blind and who knew the Scriptures of the Jews and Christians, and is stated to have translated them into Arabic. When she told him of what she had heard, he cried out: “Holy! Holy! Verily, this is the Namus (The Holy Spirit) who came to Moses. He will be the prophet of his people. Tell him this and bid him to be brave at heart.” When the two men met subsequently in the street, the blind old student of the Jewish and Christian Scriptures spoke of his faith and trust: “I swear by Him in Who hand Waraqa’s life is, Allah has chosen you to be the prophet of this people. They will call you a liar, they will persecute you, they will banish you, and they will fight against you. Oh, that I could live to those days. I would fight for these.” And he kissed him on the forehead.

Muhammad’s PBUH Visions and struggle to fight depression

The first vision was followed by a considerable period, during which Muhammad PBUH suffered much mental depression. Only Almighty Allah knows what Muhammad PBUH must have been thinking and feeling at that time. He may have been worried about his visions, uncertain as to how the majority of the Makkans would treat Allah’s blessing, since their own interests were at stake. The Makkans, at that time, relied heavily on trade that revolved around polytheistic and pagan rituals of false idols and statues and other things that they worshipped. One can’t contemplate his future and responsibilities to the people of the world, as well as the challenges that Allah Almighty had chosen him for.

Prophet rises to start his mission for Allah

The angel spoke to the grieved heart of hope and trust and of the bright future when he would see the people of the earth crowding into the one true faith. His destiny was unfolded to him, when, wrapped in profound meditation, melancholy and sad, he felt himself called by a voice from heaven to arise and preach.

“O you (Muhammad PBUH) enveloped (in garments)! Arise and warn! And your Lord (Allah) magnify!” (Ch 74:1-3 Quran)

He arose and engaged himself in the work to which he was called. Khadijah was the first to accept his mission. She was to believe in the revelations, to abandon the idolatry of her people and to join him in purity of heart and in offering up prayers to Allah the Almighty.

The Companions

At the beginning of his mission, Muhammad PBUH – hereinafter called the Prophet – opened his soul only to those who were attached to him and tried to free them from the gross practices of their forefathers. After Khadijah, his cousin’ Ali was the next companion. The Prophet used often to go into the desert around Mecca with his wife and young cousin that they might together offer their heart felt thanks to the Lord of all nations for His manifold blessings. Once they were surprised by Abu Talib, the father of ‘Ali. He said to the Prophet: “O son of my brother, what is this religion you are following?” “It is the religion of Allah of His Angels, of His Messengers and of our ancestor Abraham,” answered the Prophet. “Allah has sent me to His servants, to direct them towards the truth, and you, O my uncle, are the most worthy of all. It is meet that I should thus call upon you and it is meet that you should accept the truth and help in spreading it.” Abu Talib replied: “Son of my brother, I cannot abjure the religion of my fathers; but by the Supreme Lord, while I am alive, none shall dare to injure you.” Then turning towards ‘Ali, the venerable chief asked what religion was his. Ali answered: “O father, I believe in Allah and His Prophet and go with him.” Abu Talib replied: “Well my son, he will not call you to anything except what is good, therefore you are free to go with him.” After ‘Ali, Muhammad’s PBUH adopted son Zaid became a convert to the new faith. He was followed by Abu Bakr, a leading member of the Quraish tribe and an honest, wealthy merchant who enjoyed great consideration among his compatriots. He was but two years younger than the Prophet. His adoption of the new faith was of great moral effect. Soon after, five notables presented themselves before the Prophet and accepted Islam. Several converts also came from lower classes of the Arabs to adopt the new religion.

Proliferation of Islamic Knowledge by our Prophet

For three weary long years, the Prophet labored very quietly to deliver his people from the worship of idols. Polytheism was deeply rooted among the people. It offered attractions, which the new faith in its purity did not possess. The Quraish had personal material interests in the old worship, and their prestige was dependent upon its maintenance. The Prophet had to contend with the idolatrous worship of its followers and to oppose the ruling oligarchy, which governed its destinies. After three years of constant but quiet struggle, only thirty followers were secured. An important change now occurred in the relations of the Prophet with the citizens of Mecca. His compatriots had begun to doubt his sanity, thinking him crazy or possessed by an evil spirit. Hitherto he preached quietly and unobtrusively. He now decided to appeal publicly to the Meccans, requesting them to abandon their idolatry. For this he arranged a gathering on a neighboring hill and there spoke to them of their folly in the sight of Allah in worshipping pieces of stone which they called their gods. He invited them to abandon their old impious worship and adopt the faith of love, truth and purity. He warned them of the fate that had overtaken past races who had not heeded the preaching of former prophets. But the gathering departed without listening to the warning given them by the Prophet. Having thus failed to induce his fellow citizens to listen to him, he turned his attention to the strangers arriving in the city on commerce or pilgrimage. But the Quraish made attempts to frustrate his efforts. They hastened themselves to meet the strangers first on different routes, to warn them against holding any communication with the Prophet, whom they represented as a dangerous magician. When the pilgrims or traders returned to their homes, they carried with them the news of the advent of the bold preacher who was inviting the Arabs loudly – at the risk of his own life – to abandon the worship of their dear idols.

Persecution perpetrated by the Makkan Tribe of Quraish

Now the Prophet and his followers became subject to some persecution and indignity. The hostile Quraish prevented the Prophet from offering his prayers at the Sacred House of the Ka’ba; they pursued him wherever he went; they covered him and his disciples with dirt and filth when engaged in their devotions; they scattered thorns in the places which he frequented for devotion and meditation. Amidst all these trials the Prophet did not waver. He was full of confidence in his mission, even when on several occasions he was put in imminent danger of losing his life. At this time Hamza, the youngest son of Abdul Muttalib, adopted Islam. Hamza was a man of distinguished bravery, an intrepid warrior, generous and true, whose heroism earned for him the title of the “Lion of Allah.” He became a devoted adherent of Islam and everlost his life in the cause. The Prophet continued preaching to the Arabs in a most gentle and reasonable manner. He called thepeople, so accustomed to iniquity and wrong doings, to abandon their abominations. In burning words which excited the hearts of his hearers, he warned them of the punishment which Allah had inflicted upon the ancient tribes of ‘Ad and Thamud who had obstinately disobeyed the teachings of Allah’s messengers to them. He adjured them by the wonderful sights of nature, by the noon day brightness, by the night when it spreads its veil, by the day when it appears in glory to listen to his warning before a similar destruction befell them. He spoke to them of the Day of Reckoning, when their deeds in this world will be weighed before the Eternal Judge, when the children who had been buried alive will be asked for what crime they were put to death. Almighty Allah said:

Nay, they wonder that there has come to them a Warner (Muhammad PBUH) from among themselves. So the disbeliveers say: “This is a strange thing! When we are dead and have become dust (shall we be resurrected)? That is a far return.” We know that which the earth takes of them (their dead bodies), and with Us is a Book preserved (i.e., the Book of Decrees). Nay, but, they have denied the truth (this Qur’an) when it has come to them, so they are in a confused state (can not differentiate between right and wrong). Have they not looked at the heaven above them, how We have made it and adorned it, and there are no rifts in it? And the earth! We have spread it out, and set thereon mountains standing firm, and have produced therein every kind of lovely growth (plants). An insight and a reminder for every slave turning to Allah (i.e., the one who believes in Allah and performs deeds of His obedience, and always begs His pardon). And We send down blessed water (rain) from the sky, then we produce therewith gardens and grain (every kind of harvests that are reaped). And tall date palms, with ranged clusters; a provision for (Allah’s) slaves. And We give life therewith to a dead land. Thus will be the resurrection (of the dead). Denied before them (i.e. these pagans of Makka who denied you, O Muhammad PBUH) the people of Noah, and the dwellers of Rass, and the Thamud, and ‘Ad, and Pharaoh, and the brethren of Lot, and the dwellers of the Wood, and the people of Tubba, everyone of them denied their Messengers, so My Threat took effect.” (Ch 50: 2-14 Quran)

Almighty Allah also declared:

“All praises and thanks be to Allah Who Alone created the heavens and the earth, and originated the darkness and the light, yet those who disbelieve hold others as equal with their Lord. He it is Who has created you from clay, and then has decreed a stated term (for you to die). And there is with Him another determined term (for you to be resurrected), yet you doubt (in the Resurrection). And He is Allah (to be worshipped Alone) in the heavens and on the earth, He knows what you conceal and what you reveal, and He knows what you earn (good or bad). And never an Ayah (sign) comes to them from the Ayat (proofs, evidences, lessons, signs, revelations, etc.) of their Lord, but that they have been turning away from it. Indeed, they rejected the truth (The Qur’an and Muhammad PBUH) when it came to them, but there will come to them the news of that (the torment) which they used to mock at. Have they not seen how many a generation before them We have destroyed whom We had established on the earth such as We have not established you? And We poured out on them rain from the sky in abundance, and made the rivers flow under them. Yet We destroyed them for their sins, and created after them other generations.” (Ch 6:1-6 Quran)

As the number of believers increased and the cause of the Prophet was strengthened by the conversions of many powerful citizens, the Prophet’s preaching alarmed the Quraish. Their power and prestige were at stake. They were the custodians of the idols, which the Prophet had threatened to destroy; they were the ministers of the worship, which he denounced; in fact their existence and living wholly depended upon the maintenance of the old institutions. The Prophet taught that in the sight of his Lord all human were equal, the only distinction recognized among them being the weight of their piety. Allah the Exalted said:

“O mankind! We have created you from a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honorable of you in the Sight of Allah is that believer who has At Taqwa (one of the Muttaqun, pious and righteous persons who fear Allah much, abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which He has forbidden), and love Allah much (perform all kinds of good deeds which He has ordained. Verily! Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware.” (Ch 49:13 Quran).

The Quraish would have none of this leveling of distinctions, as it reflected upon their long inherited privileges. Accordingly, they organized a system of persecution in order to suppress the movement before it became firmly established. They decided that each family should take upon itself the task of stamping out the new faith on the spot. Each household tortured its own members or adherents or slaves who were supposed to have connected themselves with the new religion. With the exception of the Prophet, who was protected by Abu Talib and his kinsmen, and Abu Bakr, and a few others who were either distinguished by their rank or possessed some influence among the Quraish, all other converts were subjected to different sorts of torture. Some of them were thrown into prison, starved, and then flogged. The hill of Ramada and the place called Bata thus became scenes of cruel torture.

Quraish fear spread of Islam – Try in vain to blackmail Prophet

One day the Quraish tried to induce the Prophet to discontinue his teachings of the new religion, which had sown discord among their people. ‘Utba Ibn Rabi’a, was delegated to see the Prophet and speak to him. ‘Utba said: “O son of my brother, you are distinguished by your qualities; yet you have sown discord among our people and cast dissension in our families; you denounced our gods and goddesses and you charge our ancestors with impiety. Now we are come to make a proposition to you, and I ask you to think well before you reject it.” “I am listening to you, O father of Walid,” said the Prophet. “O son of my brother, if by this affair you intend to acquire riches, honors, and dignity, we are willing to collect for you a fortune larger than is possessed by any one of us; we shall make you our chief and will do nothing without you. If you desire dominion, we shall make you our king; and if the demon which possesses you cannot be subdued, we will bring you doctors and give them riches until they cure you.” When ‘Utba had finished his discourse, the Prophet said: “Now listen to me, O father of Walid.” “I listen.” He replied. The Prophet, recited to him the first thirteen verses of Surah Fussilat, which maybe interpreted as follows:

“Ha Mim (These letters are one of the miracles of the Quran, and none but Allah Alone knows their meanings). A revelation from Allah the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful. A Book whereof the Verses are explained in detail; – a Quran in Arabic for people who know. Giving glad tidings (of Paradise to the one who believes in the Oneness of Allah, Islamic Monotheism) and fears Allah much (abstains from all kinds of sins and evil deeds) and loves Allah much (performing all kinds of good deeds which He has ordained), and warning (of punishment in the Hellfire to be the one who disbelieves in the Oneness of Allah), but most of them turn away, so they listen not. And they say: “Our hearts are under coverings (screened) from that to which you invite us, and in our ears is deafness, and between us and you is a screen, so work you (on your way); verily we are working (on our way). Say (O Muhammad PBUH): “I am only a human being like you. It is inspired in me that your Ilah (God) is One Ilah (God – Allah), therefore take the Straight Path to Him (with true Faith Islamic Monotheism) and obedience to Him, and seek forgiveness of Him. And woe to Al-Mushrikeen; (polytheists, pagans, idolaters, and disbeliveers in the Oneness of Allah, etc, those who worship others along with or set up rivals or partners to Allah etc.) Those who give not the Zakat and they are disbeliveers in the Hereafter. Truly, those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah and in His Messenger Muhammad PBUH – Islamic Monotheism) and do righteous good deeds for them will be an endless reward that will never stop (Paradise). Say (O Muhammad PBUH): “Do you verily disbelieve in Him Who created the earth in two Days and you set up rivals (in worship) with Him? That is the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn and all that exists). He placed therein (the earth) firm mountains from above it, and He blessed it, and measured therein its sustenance (for its dwellers) in four Days equal (all these four days were equal in the length of time), for all those who ask (about its creation). Then He Istawa (rose over) towards the heaven when it was smoke, and said to it and to the earth: “Come both of you willingly or unwillingly.” They both said: “We come, willingly.” Then He completed and finished from their creation as seven heavens in two days and he made in each heaven with lamps (stars) to b e an adornment as well as to guard (from the devils by using them as missiles against the devils). Such is the Decree of Him the All Mighty, The All Knower. But if they turn away, then say (O Muhammad PBUH): “I have warned you of a Sa’iqa (a destruction awful cry, torment, hit, a thunder bolt) like the Sa’iqa which overtook ‘Ad and Thamud (people).” (Ch 41:1-13 Quran).

When the Prophet had finished his recitation, he said to ‘Utba: “This is my reply to your proposition; now take what course you find best.”

Quraish increase Persecution – First Hijra of 615 C.E. to Abyssinia

Persecution by the Quraish grew fiercer every day and the sufferings of the Prophet’s disciples became unbearable. He had heard of the righteousness, tolerance, and hospitality of the neighboring Christian king of Abyssinia. He recommended such of his companions who were without protection to seek refuge in the kingdom of that pious king, Al Najashi (Negus). Some fifteen of the unprotected adherents of Islam promptly availed themselves of the advice and sailed to Abyssinia. Here they met with a very kind reception from the Negus. This is called the first hijrah (migration) in the history of Islam and occurred in the fifth year of the Prophet Muhammad’s PBUH mission, A.D. 615. These emigrants were soon followed by many of their fellow sufferers, until the number reached eighty-three men and eighteen women. The hostile Quraish, furious at the escape of their victims, sent deputes to the king of Abyssinia to request him to deliver up the refugees, that they might be put to death for adjuring their old religion and embracing a new one. The king summoned the poor fugitives and inquired of them what was the religion, which they had adopted in preference to their old faith. Ja’far, son of Abu Talib and brother of ‘Ali, acted as spokesman for the exiles. He spoke thus: “O king, we were plunged in the depth of ignorance and barbarism, we adored idols, we lived in unchastity, and we ate dead bodies, and we spoke abomination, we disregarded every feeling of humanity and sense of duty towards our neighbors, and we knew no law but that of the strong, when Allah raised among us a man, of whose birth, truthfulness, honesty, and purity we were aware. He called us to profess the Unity of Allah and taught us to associate nothing with Him; he forbade us the worship of idols and enjoined us to speak the truth, to be faithful to our trusts, to be merciful, and to regard the rights of neighbors; he forbade us to speak evil of the worship of Allah and not to return to the worship of idols of woos and stone and to abstain from evil, to offer prayers, to give alms, to observe the fast. We have believed in him, we have accepted his teachings and his injunctions to worship Allah alone and to associate nothing with Him. Hence our people have persecuted us, trying to make us forego the worship of Allah and return to the worship of idols of wood and stone and other abominations. They have tortured us and injured us until, finding no safety among them, we have come to your kingdom trusting you will give us protection against their persecution.”

Al-Najashi (Negus), King of Abyssinia protects Muslims

After hearing the above speech, the hospitable king ordered the deputies to return to their people in safety and not to interfere with their fugitives. Thus the emigrants passed the period of exile in peace and comfort. While the followers of the Prophet sought safety in foreign lands against the persecution of their people, he continued his warnings to the Quraish more strenuously than ever. Again they came to him with offers of riches and honor, which he firmly and utterly refused. But they mocked at him and urged him for miracles to prove his mission. He used to answer: “Allah has not sent me to work wonders; He has sent me to preach to you.” Thus disclaiming all power of wonder working, the Prophet ever rested the truth of his divine mission upon his wise teachings. He addressed himself to the inner consciousness of man, to his common sense and to his own better judgement:

“Say (O Muhammad PBUH): “I am only a human being like you. It is inspired in me that your Ilah (God) is One Ilah (God- Allah), therefore take the Straight Path to Him (with true Faith Islamic Monotheism) and obedience to Him and seek forgiveness of Him. And woe to Al Mushrikeen; (polytheists, pagans, idolaters, and disbeliveers in the Oneness of Allah etc., those who worship others along with Allah or set up rivals or partners to Allah etc. (Ch 41:6 Quran)

Despite all the exhortation of the Prophet, the Quraish persisted in asking him for a sign. They insisted that unless some sign be sent down to him from his Lord, they would not believe. The disbeliveers used to ask: “Why has Muhammad PBUH not been sent with miracles like previous prophets?” T he Prophet replied: “Because miracles had proved inadequate to convince. Noah was sent with signs, and with what effect? Where was the lost tribe of Thamud? They had refused to receive the preaching of the Prophet Salih, unless he showed them a sign and caused the rock to bring forth a living camel. He did what they asked. In scorn they cut the camel’s feet and then daring the prophet to fulfill his threats of judgment, were found dead in their beds the next morning, stricken by the angel of the Lord.”

The Holy Quran is a Miracle

There are some seventeen places in the Quran, in which the Prophet Muhammad PBUH is challenged to work a sign, and he answered them all to the same or similar effect: Allah has the power of working miracles, and has not been believed; there were greater miracles in nature than any which could be wrought outside of it; and the Quran itself was a great, everlasting miracle. The Quran, the Prophet used to assert to the disbeliveers, is a book of blessings which is a warning for the whole world; it is a complete guidance and explains everything necessary; it is a reminder of what is imprinted on human nature and is free from every discrepancy and from error and falsehood. It is a book of true guidance and a light to all.

As to the sacred idols, so much honored and esteemed by the pagan Arabs, the Prophet openly recited:

“They are but names which you have named – you and your fathers – for which Allah has sent down no authority.” (CH 53:23 Quran)

When the Prophet thus spoke reproachfully of the sacred gods of the Quraish, the latter redoubled their persecution. But the Prophet, nevertheless, continued his preaching undaunted but the hostility of his enemies or by their bitter persecution of him. And despite all opposition and increased persecution, the new faith gained ground. The national fair at Okadh near Mecca attracted many desert Bedouins and trading citizen of distant towns. These listened to the teachings of the Prophet, to his admonitions, and to his denunciations of their sacred idols and of their superstitions. They carried back all that they had heard to their distant homes, and thus the advent of the Prophet was made know to almost all parts of the peninsula.

Makkans plea to Abu Talib to stop the Prophet

The Meccans, however, were more than ever furious at the Prophet’s increasing preaching against their religion. They asked his uncle Abu Talib to stop him, but he could not do anything. At , as the Prophet persisted in his ardent denunciations against their ungodliness and impiety, they turned him out from the Ka’ba where he used to sit and preach, and subsequently went in a body to Abu Talib. They urged the venerable chief to prevent his nephew from abusing their gods any longer or uttering any ill words against their ancestors. They warned Abu Talib that if he would not do that, he would be excluded from the communion of his people and driven to side with Muhammad PBUH; the matter would then be settled by fight until one of the two parties were exterminated.

Abu Talib neither wished to separate himself from his people, nor forsake his nephew for the idolaters to revenge themselves upon. He spoke to the Prophet very softly and begged him to abandon his affair. To this suggestion the Prophet firmly replied: “O my uncle, if they placed the sun in my right hand and the moon in my left hand to cause me to renounce my task, verily I would not desist therefrom until Allah made manifest His cause or I perished in the attempt.” The Prophet, overcome by the thought that his uncle and protector was willing to desert him, turned to depart. But Abu Talib called him loudly to come back, and he came. “Say whatever you please; for by the Lord I shall not desert you ever.”

Abu Talib protects his Nephew, the Prophet

The Quraish again attempted in vain to cause Abu Talib to abandon his nephew. The venerable chief declared his intention to protect his nephew against any menace or violence. He appealed to the sense of honor of the two families of the Bani Hashim and the Bani Muttalib, both families being kinsmen of the Prophet, to protect their member from falling a victim to the hatred of rival parties. All the members of the two families nobly responded to the appeal of Abu Talib except Abu Lahab, one of the Prophet’s uncles, who took part with the persecutors.

Umar Al-Khattab submits to Islam

During this period, ‘Umar Al-Khattab adopted Islam. In him the new faith gained a valuable adherent and an important factor in the future development and propagation of Islam. Hitherto he had been a violent opposer of the Prophet and a bitter enemy of Islam. His conversion is said to have been worked by the miraculous effect on his mind of a Surah of the Quran which his sister was reading in her house, where he had gone with the intention of killing her for adopting Islam. Thus the party of the Prophet had been strengthened by the conversation by his uncle Hamza, a man of great valor and merit; and of Abu Bakr and ‘Umar, both men of great energy and reputation. The Muslims now ventured to perform their devotions in public.

Quraish divided into two factions

Alarmed at the bold part which the Prophet and his followers were not able to assume, and roused by the return of the deputies from Abyssinia and the announcement of their unsuccessful mission, the Quraish determined to check by a decisive blow any further progress of Islam. Towards this end, in the seventh year of the mission, they made a solemn covenant against the descendants of Hashim and Muttalib, engaging themselves to contract no marriage with any of them and to have no communication with them. Upon this, the Quraish became divided into two factions, and the two families of Hashim and Muttalib all repaired to Abu Talib as their chief.

Abu Lahab’s hatred of Islam

Abu Lahab, the Prophet’s uncle, however, out of his inveterate hatred of his nephew and his doctrine, went over to the opposite party, whose chief was Abu Sufyan Ibn Harb, of the family of Umayya. The persecuted party, Muslims as well as idolaters betook themselves to a defile on the eastern skirts of Mecca. They lived in this defensive position for three years. The provisions, which they had carried with them, were soon exhausted. Probably they would have entirely perished but for the sympathy and occasional help received from less bigoted compatriots.

Reconciliation of the Quraish

Towards the beginning of the tenth year of the mission, reconciliation was concluded between the Quraish and the two families of Hashim and Abdul Muttalib through the intermediation of Hisham, Ibn Umar, and Zobeir, Ibn Abu Umayya. Thus, the alliance against the two families was abolished, and they were able to return to Mecca. During the period the Prophet and his kinspeople passed in their defensive position, Islam made no progress outside; but in the sacred months, when violence was considered sacrilege, the Prophet used to come out of his temporary prison to preach Islam to the pilgrims.

Death of Abu Talib and Khadijah

In the following year, both Abu Talib and Khadijah died. Thus the Prophet lost in Abu Talib the kind guardian of his youth who had hitherto protected him against his enemies, and in Khadijah his most encouraging companion. She was ever his angel of hope and consolation. The Prophet, weighed down by the loss of his amiable protector and his beloved wife, without hope of turning the Quraish from idolatry, with a saddened heart, yet full of trust, resolved to exercise his ministry in some of her field. He chose Taif, a town about sixty miles east of Mecca, where he went accompanied by a faithful servant Zaid.

The tribe of Thakif, who were the inhabitants of Taif, received Muhammad PBUH very coldly. However, he stayed there for one month. Though the more considerate and better sort of men treated him with a little respect, the slaves and common people refused to listen to his teachings; they were outrageously indignant at his invitation to abandon the gods they worshipped with such freedom of morals and lightness of heart. At length they rose against him, and bringing him to the wall of the city, obliged him to depart and return to Mecca.

People of Madina accept Prophet

The repulse greatly discouraged his followers; however, the Prophet boldly continued to preach to the public assemblies at the pilgrimage and gained several new converts, among whom were six of the city of Yahtrib (later called Medina), of the Jewish tribe of Khazraj. When these Yathribites returned home, they spread the news among their people that a prophet had arisen among the Arabs who was to call them to Allah and put an end to their inquiries.

Miraj (Ascension to the Heavens) on a creature called Buraq

In the twelfth year of his mission, the Prophet made his night journey from Mecca to Jerusalem, and thence to heaven. His journey, known in history as Miraj (Ascension) was a real bodily one and not only a vision. It was at this time that Allah ordered the Muslims to pray the five daily prayers.

Almighty Allah had said:

“Glorified (and Exalted) be He (Allah) (above all that evil they associate with Him), Who took His slave Muhammad PBUH for a journey by night from AL Masjid al Haram (at Makka) to the farthest mosque (in Jerusalem), the neighborhood whereof We have blessed, order that We might show him (Muhammad PBUH) of Our Ayat (proofs, evidences, lessons, signs, etc.). Verily, He is the All Hearer, the All Seer.” (Ch 17:1 Quran)

Abbas Ibn Malik reported that Malik Ibn Sasaa said that Allah’s Messenger described to them his Night Journey saying: “While I was lying in Al-Hatim or Al-Hijr, suddenly someone came to me and cut my body open from here to here.” I asked Al-Jarud, who was by my side, “What does he mean?” He said: “It means from his throat to his public area,” or said, “From the top of the chest.” The Prophet further said, “He then took out my heart. Then a gold tray of Belief was brought to me and my heart was washed and was filled (with Belief) and then returned to its original place. Then a white animal which was smaller than a mule and bigger than a donkey was brought to me.” (On this Al-Jarud asked: “Was it in the Buraq, O Abu Hamza?” I (Anas) replied in the affirmative. The Prophet said: “The animal’s step (was so wide that it) reached the farthest point within the reach of the animals’ sight. I was carried on it.

Miraj – Muhammad’s PBUH encounter with Adam (Hadith)

Gabriel set out with me till we reached the nearest heaven. “When he asked for the gate to be opened, it was asked, ‘Who is it?’ Gabriel answered, ‘Gabriel.’ It was asked, ‘Who is accompany you?’ Gabriel replied, ‘Muhammad PBUH.’ It was asked, ‘Has Muhammad PBUH been called?’ Gabriel replied in the affirmative. Then it was said. ‘He is welcomed. What an excellent visit his is!’ The gate was opened, and when I went over the first heaven, I saw Adam there. Gabriel said to me: ‘This is your father, Adam; pay him your greetings.’ So I greeted him and he returned the greetings to me and said: ‘You are welcomed, O pious son and pious Prophet.’

Miraj – Muhammad’s PBUH encounter with John and Jesus (Hadith)

Then Gabriel ascended with me till we reached the second heaven. Gabriel asked for the gate to be opened. It was asked: ‘Who is it?’ Gabriel answered: ‘Gabriel.’ It was asked: ‘Who is accompany you?’ Gabriel replied, ‘Muhammad PBUH.’ It was asked: ‘Has he been called?’ Gabriel answered in the affirmative. Then it was said: ‘He is welcomed. What an excellent visit his is!’ The gate was opened. “When I went over the second heaven, here I saw John (Yahya) and Jesus (Isa), who were cousins of each other. Gabriel said to me: “These are John and Jesus; pay them your greetings.’ So I greeted them and both of them returned my greetings to me and said, ‘You are welcomed, O pious brother and pious Prophet.’

Miraj – Muhammad’s PBUH encounter with Joseph (Hadith)

Then Gabriel ascended with me to the third heaven and asked for its gate to be opened. IT was asked ‘Who is it?’ And Gabriel replied: ‘Gabriel.’ It was asked, ‘Who is accompany you?’ Gabriel replied, ‘Muhammad PBUH.’ It was asked, ‘Has he been called?’ Gabriel replied in the affirmative. Then it was said: ‘He is welcomed, what an excellent visit his is!’ The gate was opened, and when I went over the third heaven there I saw Joseph (Yusuf), Gabriel said to me: ‘This is Joseph, pay him your greetings.’ So I greeted him and he returned the greetings to me and said: ‘You are welcomed, O pious brother and pious Prophet.’

Miraj – Muhammad’s PBUH encounter with Enoch (Hadith)

Then Gabriel ascended with me to the fourth heaven and asked for its gate to be opened. IT was asked ‘Who is it?’ Gabriel replied, ‘Gabriel’ It was asked: ‘Who is accompany you?’ Gabriel replied: ‘Muhammad PBUH.’ It was asked: ‘Has he been called?’ Gabriel replied in the affirmative. Then it was said: ‘He is welcomed, what an excellent visit his is!’ “The gate was opened, and when I went over the fourth heaven, there I saw Enoch (Idris), Gabriel said to me: ‘This is Enoch; pay him your greetings.’ So I greeted him and he returned the greetings to me and said: ‘You are welcomed O pious brother and pious Prophet.’

Miraj – Muhammad’s PBUH encounter with Aaron (Hadith)

Then Gabriel ascended with me to the fifth heaven and asked for its gate to be opened. It was asked: ‘Who is it?’ Gabriel replied: ‘Gabriel.’ It was asked: ‘Who is accompany you?’ Gabriel replied ‘Muhammad PBUH.’ It was asked: ‘Has he been called?’ Gabriel replied in the affirmative. Then it was said: ‘He is welcomed, what an excellent visit his is!’ So when I went over the fifth heaven, there I saw Aaron (Harun), Gabriel said to me: “This is Aaron; pay hyour greetings.’ So I greeted him and he returned the greetings to me and said: “You are welcomed, O pious brother and pious Prophet.”

Miraj – Muhammad’s PBUH encounter with Moses (Hadith)

Then Gabriel ascended with me to the sixth heaven and asked for its gate to be opened. It was asked: ‘Who is it?’ Gabriel replied: ‘Gabriel.’ It was asked: ‘Who is accompanying you?’ Gabriel replied: ‘Muhammad PBUH.’ It was said: ‘Has he been called?’ Gabriel replied in the affirmative. It was said: ‘He is welcomed. What an excellent visit his is!’ “When I went over the sixth heaven, there I saw Moses (Musa). Gabriel said to me: “This is Moses; pay him your greeting. So I greeted him and he returned the greetings to me and said: “You are welcomed, O pious brother and pious Prophet.” When I left him (Moses) he wept. Someone asked him: ‘What makes you weep?’ Moses said: ‘I weep because after me there has been sent (as Prophet) a young man whose followers will enter Paradise in greater numbers than my followers.’

Miraj – Muhammad’s PBUH encounter with Abraham (Hadith)

Then Gabriel ascended with me to the seventh heaven and asked for its gate to be opened. It was asked: ‘Who is it?’ Gabriel replied: ‘Gabriel.’ It was asked: ‘Who is accompanying you?’ Gabriel replied: ‘Muhammad PBUH.’ It was asked: ‘Has he been called?’ Gabriel replied in the affirmative. Then it said: ‘He is welcomed. What an excellent visit his is!’ “So when I went (over the seventh heaven), there I saw Abraham (Ibrahim). Gabriel said to me: ‘This is your father; pay your greetings to him.’ So I greeted him and he returned the greetings to me and said: ‘You are welcomed, O pious son and pious Prophet.’

Then I was made to ascend to Sidrat-ul-Muntaha (the Lote Tree of the utmost boundary). Behold! Its fruits were like the jars of Hajr (a place near Medina) and its leaves were as big as the ears of elephants. Gabriel said: “This is the Lote Tree of the utmost and boundary.’ Behold! There ran four rivers, two were hidden and two were visible, I asked: ‘What are these two kinds of rivers, O Gabriel?’ He replied: ‘As for the hidden rivers, they are two rivers in Paradise and the visible rivers are the Nile and the Euphrates.’

Moses advises Muhammad PBUH to plea to Allah to lessen prayers

“Then Al-Bait-ul-Ma’mur (the Sacred House) was shown to me and a container full of wine and another full of milk and a third full of honey were brought to me. I took the milk. Gabriel remarked: ‘This is the Islamic religion which you and your followers are following.’ Then the prayers were enjoined on me: they were fifty prayers a day. When I returned, I passed by Moses, who asked me; ‘What have you been ordered to do?’ I replied: ‘I have been ordered to offer fifty prayers a day.’ Moses said: ‘Your followers cannot bear fifty prayers a day, and by Allah I have tested people before you, and I have tried my level best with Bani Israel in vain. Go back to your Lord and ask for reduction to lessen your followers” burden.’ So I went back, and Allah reduced ten prayers for me. Then again I came to Moses, but he repeated the same as he had said before. Then again I went back to Allah, and He reduced ten more prayers. When I came to Moses he said the same. I went back to Allah, and He ordered m to observe ten prayers a day. When I came back to Moses, he repeated the same advice, so I went back to Allah and was ordered to observe five prayers a day.

“When I came back to Moses, he said: ‘What have you been ordered?’ I replied: ‘I have been ordered to observe five prayers a day.’ He said: ‘Your followers cannot bear fear prayers a day, and no doubt, I have got an experience of the people before you, and I have tried my level best with Bani Israel, so go back to your Lord and ask for reduction to lesson your followers’ burden.’ I said: ‘I have requested so much of my Lord that I feel ashamed, but I am satisfied now and surrender to Allah’s Order.’ When I left, I heard a voice saying: ‘I have passed My order and have lessened the burden of My worshippers.'”

Women’s Oath – People of Yathrib (Madina) submit to Islam

In this year, twelve men of Yathrib, of whom ten were of the Jewish tribe of Khazraj and the other two of Aws, came to Meccan and took an oath of fidelity to the Prophet at Al-Aqaba, a hill on the north of that city. This oath was called the Women’s’ Oath, not that any women were present at this time, but because a man was not thereby obliged to take up arms in defense of the Prophet or his religion, it being the same oath that was afterwards exacted of the women. This oath was as follows: “We will not associate anything with Allah; we will not steal nor commit adultery or fornication, nor kill our children (as the pagan Arabs used to do when they apprehended that they would not be able to maintain them), nor forge calumnies; we will obey the Prophet in everything that is reasonable, and we will be faithful to him in well and sorrow.” When they had solemnly engaged to do all this, the Prophet sent one of his disciples, Mus’ab Ibn Umair, home with them to teach them the fundamental doctrines and ceremonies of the religion. Mus’ab, having arrived at Yathrib by the assistance of those who had been formerly converted, gained several new converts, particularly Usaid Ibn Khudair, a chief of man of the city, and Sa’d Ibn Mu’adh, prince of the tribe of Aws. Islam spread so fast that there was a scarce a house that did not have some Muslims in it.

The next year, being the thirteenth of the mission (A.D. 622) Mus’ab returned from Yathrib accompanied by seventy-three men and two women of that city who had adopted Islam, besides others who were as yet unbelievers. On their arrival, these Yathribites immediately sent to the Prophet and invited him to their city. The Prophet was not in great need of such assistance, for his opponents had by this time grown so powerful in Mecca that he could not stay there much longer without imminent danger. He therefore accepted their proposal and met them one night by appointment at Al Aqaba attended by his uncle Al-Abbas, who, though he as not then a convert, wished his nephew well.

Al Abbas made a speech to those of Yathrib wherein he told them that, as the Prophet Muhammad PBUH was obliged to quit his native city and seek shelter elsewhere, and they had offered him their protection, they would do well not to deceive him; and that if they were not firmly resolved to defend and not to betray him, they had better declare their minds and let him provide for his safety in some other manner. Upon their professing their sincerity, the Prophet swore to be faithful to them, on condition that they should worship none but Allah observe the precepts of Islam, obey the Prophet in all that was right, and protect him against all insults as heartily as they would their wives and families. They then asked him what would be their return, if they should happen to be killed in the cause of Allah; he answered: “Paradise,” whereupon they pledged their faith to him and his cause.

The Hijra – People of Yathrib (Madina) welcome Muslims

The Prophet then selected twelve men out of their number to act as his delegates. Thus was concluded the second covenant of Al Aqaba. The Yathribites returned home leaving the Prophet to arrange for the journey to their city. The Prophet directed his followers to seek immediate safety at Yathrib, which they accordingly did. About one hundred families silently disappeared from Mecca and proceeded to Yathrib, where they were received with enthusiasm and much hospitality. Finally, all the disciples had gone to Yathrib. The Prophet alone remained at Mecca, keeping with him only his young cousin, ‘Ali, and his devoted friend Abu Bakr.

The Makkans plot to kill Allah’s Prophet

The Meccans, fearing the consequence of this new alliance, began to think seriously of preventing Muhammad PBUH from escaping to Yathrib. They met in all haste. After several milder expedients had been rejected, they decided that he should be killed. They agreed that one man should be chosen out of every tribe and that each man should strike a blow at him with his sword so that responsibility of the guilt would rest equally on all tribes. The Bani Hashim, Muhammad’s PBUH own tribe, were much inferior and therefore would not be able to revenge their kinsman’s death. A number of noble youths were selected for the bloody deed. As the night advanced, the assassins posted themselves round the Prophet’s dwelling. They watched all night long, waiting to murder Muhammad PBUH when he should leave his house at the early dawn. By some the Prophet had warned of the danger, and he directed ‘Ali to lie down in his place and wrap himself up in his green clock, which he did. The Prophet miraculously escaped through the window and he repaired to the house of Abu Bakr, unperceived by door. These, in the meantime, looking through a crevice and seeing ‘Ali, whom they mistook for Muhammad PBUH himself, asleep, continued watching there until morning. When ‘Ali arose, they found themselves deceived. The fury of the Quraish was now unbounded. The news that the would be assassins had returned unsuccessful and that Muhammad PBUH had escaped aroused their whole energy. A price of a hundred camels was set upon Muhammad’s PBUH head.

A narration Aisha Bint Abu Bakr (Prophet’s Wife)

Narrated ‘Aisha Bint Abu Bakr (the wife of the Prophet): “I never remembered my parents believing in any religion other than the true religion (Islam), and (I don’t remember) a single day passing without our being visited by Allah’s Messenger in the morning and in the evening. When the Muslims were put to test (troubled by the pagans), Abu Bakr set out migrating to the land of Abyssinia (Ethiopia), and when he reached Bark-al-Ghimad, Ibn Ad-Daghina, the chief of the tribe of Qara, met him and said, ‘O Abu Bakr! Where are you going?’ Abu Bakr replied: ‘My people have turned me out (of my country), so I want to wander on the earth and worship my Lord.’ Ibn Ad-Dhagina said: ‘O Abu Bakr! A man like you should not leave his homeland, nor should he be driven out, because you help the destitute, earn their living, and you keep good relations with your kith and kin, help the weak and the poor, entertain guests generously, and help the calamity-stricken persons. Therefore, I am your protector. Go back and worship your Lord in your town.’

“So Abu Bakr returned and Ibn Ad-Daghina accompanied him. In the evening Ibn Ad-Dhagina visited the nobles of Quraish and said to them. ‘A man like Abu Bakr should not leave his homeland, nor should he be driven out. Do you (Quraish) drive out a man who helps the destitute, earns their living, keeps good relations with his kith and kin, helps the weak and poor, entertain guests generously and helps the calamity-stricken persons?’ So the people of Quraish could not refuse Ibn Ad-Dhagina’s protection, and they said to Ibn Ad-Daghina: ‘Let Abu Bakr worship his Lord in his house. He can pray and recite there whatever he likes, but he should not hurt us with it, and should not do it publicly, because we are afraid that he may affect our women and children.” Ibn Ad-Dhagina told Abu Bakr all of that. Abu Bakr stayed in that state, worshipping his Lord in his house. He did not pray publicly, nor did he recite Quran outside his house.

Abu Bakr builds Mosque

“Then a thought occurred to Abu Bakr to build a mosque in front of his house, and there he used to pray and recite the Quran. The women and children of the pagans began to gather around him in great number. They used to wonder at him and look at him. Abu Bakr was a man who used to weep too much, and he could not help weeping or reciting the Quran. That situation scared the nobles of the pagans of Quraish, so they sent for Ibn Ad-Daghina. When he came to them, they said: ‘We accepted your protection of Abu Bakr on condition that he should worship his Lord in his house, but he has violated the conditions and he has built a mosque in front of his house where he prays and recites the Quran publicly. We are not afraid that he may affect our women and children unfavorably. So, prevent him from that. If he likes to confine the worship of his Lord to his house, he may do so, but if he insists on doing that openly, ask him to release you from your obligation to protect him, for we dislike to break our pact with you, but we deny Abu Bakr the right to announce his act publicly.’ Ibn Ad-Dhagina went to Abu Bakr and said: ‘O Abu Bakr! You know well what contract I have made on your behalf; now, you are either to abide by it, or else release me from my obligation of protecting you, because I do not want the Arabs hear that my people have dishonored a contract I have made on behalf of another man.’ Abu Bakr replied: ‘I release you from your pact to protect me and am pleased with the protection from Allah.’

Aisha’s narration’s continues: “At that time the Prophet was in Mecca, and he said to the Muslims: ‘In a dream I have been shown your migration place, a land of date palm trees, between two mountains, the two stony tracts.’ So, some people migrated to Medina, and most of those people who had previously migrated to the land of Ethiopia, returned to Medina. Abu Bakr also prepared to leave for Medina, but Allah’s Messenger said to him: ‘Wait for awhile, because I hope that I will be allowed to migrate also.’ Abu Bakr replied: ‘Do you indeed expect this? Let my father be sacrificed for you!’ The Prophet said: ‘Yes.’ So Abu Bakr did not migrate for the sake of Allah’s Messenger in order to accompany him. He fed two she camels he possessed with the leaves of As-Samur tree that fell on being struck by a stick for four months.

“One day, while we were sitting in Abu Bakr’s house at noon, someone said to Abu Bakr: ‘This is Allah’s Messenger with his head covered coming at a time at which he never used to visit us before.’ Abu Bakr said: ‘May my parents be sacrificed for him. By Allah he has not come at this hour except for a great necessity.’ So Allah’s Messenger came and asked permission to enter, and he was allowed to enter. When he entered, he said to Abu Bakr: “Tell everyone who is present with you to go away.’ Abu Bakr replied: ‘There are none but your family, May my father be sacrificed for you, O Allah’s Messenger!’ The Prophet said: ‘I have been given permission to migrate.’ Abu Bakr said: ‘Shall I accompany you? May my father be sacrificed for you, O Allah’s Messenger!’ Allah’s Messenger said: ‘Yes.’ Abu Bakr said, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! May my father be sacrificed for you, take one of these two she-camels of mine.’ Allah’s Messenger replied: ‘I will accept it with payment.’ So we prepared the baggage quickly and put some journey food in a leather bag for them. Asma, Abu Bakr’s daughter, cut a piece from her waist belt and tied the mouth of the leather bag with it, and for that reason she was named ‘Dhat-un-Nitaqain’ (the owner of two belts).

“Then Allah’s Messenger and Abu Bakr reached a cave on the mountain of Thaur and stayed there for three nights. Abdullah Ibn Abi Bakr who was an intelligent and sagacious youth, used to stay with them overnight. He used to leave them before daybreak so that in the morning he would be with Quraish as if he had spent the night in Mecca. He would keep in mind any plot made against them and when it became dark he would go and inform them of it. ‘Amir Ibn Fuhaira, the freed slave of Abu Bakr, used to bring the milch sheep (of his master, Abu Bakr) to them a little while after nightfall in order to rest the sheep there. So they always had fresh milk at night, the milk of their sheep, and the milk which they warmed by throwing heated stones in it. ‘Amir Ibn Fuhaira would then call the herd away when it was still dark (before daybreak). He did the same in each of those three nights. Allah’s Messenger and Abu Bakr had hired a man from the tribe of Bani Ad-Dail from the family of Bani Abd Ibn Adi as an expert guide, and he was in alliance with the family of Al-As Ibn Wail As-Sahmi and he was in the religion of the infidels of Quraish. The Prophet and Abu Bakr trusted him and gave him their two she-camels and took his promise to bring their two she-camels to the cave of the mountain of Thaur in the morning after three nights later. And when they set out, Amir Ibn Futhaira and the guide went along with them and the guide led them, along the seashore.” (Sahih Al-Bukhari).

The nephew of Suraqa Ibn Ju’sham said that his father informed him that he heard Suraqa Ibn Jusham saying: “The messengers of the pagans of Quraish came to us declaring that they had assigned for the persons who would kill or arrest Allah’s Messenger and Abu Bakr, a reward equal to their bloodmoney. While I was sitting in one of the gatherings of my tribe, Bani Mudlij, a man from them came to us and stood up while we were sitting and said: ‘O Suraqa! No , I have just seen some people far away on the seashore, and I think they are Muhammad PBUH and his companions.’ I, too, realized that it must have been they. But I said: ‘No, it is not they, but you have seen so-and-so and so-and-so, whom we saw set out.’ I stayed in the gathering for a while and then got up and left for my home, and ordered my slave-girl to get my horse, which was behind a hillock, and keep it ready for me.

“Then I took my spear and left by the back door of my house dragging the lower end of the spear on the ground and keeping it low. Then I reached my horse, mounted it and made it gallop. When I approached them (Muhammad PBUH and Abu Bakr), my horse stumbled and I fell down from it. Then I stood up, gold hold of my quiver and took out the divining arrows and drew lots as to whether I should harm them or not, and the lot which I disliked came out. But I remounted my horse and let it gallop, giving no importance to the divining arrows. When I heard the recitation of the Qur’an by Allah’s Messenger who did not look hither and thither while Abu Bakr was doing it often, suddenly the forelegs of my horse sank into the ground up to the knees, and I fell down from it. Then I rebuked it, and it got up but could hardly take out its forelegs from the ground, and when it stood up straight again, its forelegs caused dust to rise up in the sky like smoke. Then again I drew lots with the divining arrows, and the lot which I disliked came out. So I called upon them to feel secure. They stopped, and I remounted my horse and went to them. When I saw how I had been hampered from harming them, it came to my mind that the cause of Allah’s Messenger (Islam) would become victorious. So I said to them: ‘Your people have assigned a reward equal to bloodmoney for your head.’ Then I told them all the plans the people of Mecca had made concerning them. Then I offered them some journey food and goods, but they refused to take anything and did not ask for anything, but the Prophet said: ‘Do not tell others about us.’ Then I requested him to write for me a statement of security and peace. He ordered ‘Amir Ibn Fuhaira, who wrote it for me on a parchment, and then Allah’s Messenger proceeded on his way.” (Sahih Al-Bukhari)

Holy Prophet travels to Madina (Hijra)

“Narrated ‘Urwa Ibn Az-Zubair: “Allah’s Messenger met Az Zubair in a caravan of Muslim merchants who were returning from Sham. Az -Zubair provided Allah’s Messenger and Abu Bakr with white clothes to wear. When the Muslims of Medina heard the new of the departure of Allah’s Messenger from Mecca (towards Medina), they started going to the Harra every morning,. They would wait for him till the heat of the noon forced them to return. One day, after waiting for a long while, they returned home, and when they went into their houses, a Jew climbed up to the roof of one of the forts of his people to look for something, and he saw Allah’s Messenger and his companions, dressed in white clothes, emerging out of the desert mirage.

“The Jew could not help shouting at the top of his voice: ‘O you Arabs! Here is your great man whom you have been waiting for!’ So all the Muslims rushed to their arms and received Allah’s Messenger on the summit of Harra. The Prophet turned with them to the right and alighted at the quarters of Bani Amr Ibn Auf, and this was on Monday in the month of Rabi ul Awal. Abu Bakr stood up, receiving the people, while Allah’s Messenger sat down and kept silent. Some of the Ansar who came and had not seen Allah’s Messenger before began greeting Abu Bakr, but when the sunshine fell on Allah’s Messenger and Abu Bakr came forward and shaded him with his sheet, only then the people came to know Allah’s Messenger. Allah’s Messenger stayed with Bani Amr Ibn Auf for ten nights and established the mosque (Mosque of Quba) which was founded on piety. Allah’s Messenger prayed in it and then mounted his she-camel and proceeded on, accompanied by the people till his she-camel knelt down at the place of the Mosque of Allah’s Messenger at Medina. Some Muslims used to pray there in those days, and that place was a yard for drying dates belonging to Suhail and Sahl, the orphan boys who were under the guardianship of Asad In Zurara. When his she-camel knelt down, Allah’s Messenger said: ‘This place, Allah willing, will be our abiding place.’ Allah’s Messenger then called the two boys and told them to suggest a price for that yard so that he might take it as a mosque. The two boys said: ‘No, but we will give it as a gift, O Allah’s Messenger!’ Allah’s Messenger then built a mosque there. The Prophet himself started carrying unburned bricks for its building and while doing so, he was saying: ‘This load is better than the load of Khaibar, for it is more pious in the Sight of Allah and purer and better rewardable.’ He was also saying: ‘O Allah! The actual reward is the reward in the Hereafter, so bestow Your Mercy on the Ansar and the Emigrants.’ Thus the Prophet recited (by way of proverb) the poem of some Muslim poet whose name is unknown to me.” (Ibn Shibab said, ‘In the hadiths, it does not occur that Allah’s Messenger recited a complete poetic verse other than this one.’) (Sahih Al-Bukhari)

Hijra – Islamic Calendar marks this date

Thus was accomplished the hijrah, or the flight of Muhammad PBUH as called in European annals, from which the Islamic calendar dates.

Yathrib renamed Al-Madina, Al-Munawara – “The Illuminated City”

When the Prophet Muhammad PBUH and his companions settled at Yathrib, this city changed its name, and henceforth was called, Al-Medina, Al-Munawara, the Illuminated City, or more shortly, Medina, the City. It is situated about eleven-day’s journey to the north of Mecca. At that time it was ruled by two Kahtanite tribes, Aws and Khazraj. These two tribes, however, were constantly quarreling among themselves. It was only about that time when the Prophet announced his mission at Mecca that these tribes, after long years of continuous warfare, entered on a period of comparative peace. When the Prophet settled at Medina, the tribes of Aws and Khazraj forgot entirely their old feuds and were united together in the bond of Islam. Their old divisions were soon effaced and the Ansar”, the Helpers of the Prophet, became the common designation of all Medinites who had helped the Prophet in his cause. Those who emigrated with him from Mecca received the title of “Muhajereen” or the Emigrants. The Prophet, in order to unite both classes in closer bonds, established between them a brotherhood, which linked them together as children of the same parents, with the Prophet as their guardian.

Allah’s Apostle Settles in Madina

The first step the Prophet took, after his settlement at Medina, was to built a mosque for the worship of Allah according to principles of Islam. Also, houses for the accommodation of the emigrants were soon erected.

Muhammad’s PBUH Charter – Jews and Muslims unite to defend against enemies

Medina and its suburb were at this time inhabited by three distinct parties, the Emigrants, the Helpers, and the Jews. In order to weld them together into an orderly federation, the Prophet granted a charter to the people, clearly defining their rights and obligations. This charter represented the framework of the first commonwealth organized by the Prophet. It started thus: ‘In the name of he Most Merciful and Compassionate Lord, this charter is given by Muhammad PBUH, the Messenger of Allah to all believers, whether of Quraish or Medina, and all individuals of whatever origin who have made common cause with them, who shall all constitute one nation.” The following are some extracts from the charter: The state of peace and war shall be common to all Muslims; no one among them shall have the right of concluding peace with, or declaring war against, the enemies of his co-religionists. The Jews who attach themselves to our commonwealth shall be protected from all insults and vexations; they shall have an equal right with our people to our assistance and good offices. The Jews of the various branches and all others doiciled in Medina shall form with the Muslims one composite nation; they shall practice their religion as freely as the Muslims. The allies of the Jews shall enjoy the same security and freedom. The guilty shall be pursued and punished. The Jews shall join the Muslims in defending Medina all enemies. The interior of Medina shall be a sacred place for all who accept this charter. All true Muslims shall hold in abhorrence every man guilty of crime, injustice or disorder; no one shall uphold the culpable, though he be his nearest kin.

After dealing with the interior management of the State, the charter concluded as follows: “All future disputes arising among those who accept this charter shall be referred, under Allah to the Prophet.”

Thus this charter put an end to the state of anarchy that prevailed among the Arabs. It constituted the Prophet Muhammad PBUH as chief magistrate of the nation.

Charter faces Mutiny (Inside enemies) – The Hypocrites and unsatisfied Jews

The party of the Ansars, or Helpers, included some lukewarm converts who retained an ill-concealed predilection for idolatry. These were headed by Abdullah Ibn Ubai, a man with some claims to distinction. They ostensibly joined Islam, but in secret were disaffected. They often were a source of considerable danger to the newborn commonwealth and required unceasing watchfulness on the part of the Prophet. Towards them he always showed the greatest patience and forbearance, hoping in the end to win them over to the faith, which expectations were fully justified by the result. While the death of Abdullah Ibn Ubai, his party which were known as the party of the “Munafiqeen” (the Hypocrites) disappeared.

The Jews who constituted the third party of the Medinites were, however, the most serious element of danger. No kindness or generous treatment on the part of the Prophet would seem to satisfy them. They soon broke off and ranged themselves with the enemies of the new faith. They did not hesitate to declare openly that they preferred idolatry, with its attendant evils, to the faith of Islam. Thus, the Prophet had to keep an eye on his enemies outside Medina, on the one hand, and those within the city on the other. The Meccans who had sworn Muhammad’s PBUH death were well acquainted, thanks to the party of the Hypocrites and of the Jews at Medina, with the real forces of the Muslims. They also knew that the Jews had accepted Muhammad’s PBUH alliance only from motives of temporary expedience and that they would break away from him to join the idolaters as soon as the latter showed themselves in the vicinity of Medina. The safety of the state required the proscription of the traitors who were secretly giving information to the common enemy. About six men were executed for high treason of this nature.

Madina under Sabotage style attacks on Food, Cattle etc…

Towards the second year of the hijrah, the idolaters of Mecca began a series of hostile acts against the Muslims of Medina. They sent men in parties to commit depredations on the fruit trees of the Muslims of Medina and to carry away their flocks. Now came the moment of severest trial to Islam. It became the duty of the Prophet to take serious measures to guard against any plot rising from within or a sudden attack from without.

Battle of Badr – Makkan Troop formations approaching Madina

Allah’s Prophet put Medina in a state of military discipline. He had to send frequent reconnoitering parties to guard against any sudden onslaught. No sooner did the Prophet organize hi state than a large well-equipped army of the Meccans was afield. A force constituting of one thousand men marched under Abu Jahl, a great enemy of Islam, towards Medina to attack the city. The Muslims received timely notice of their enemies’ intention. A body of three hundred adherents, of whom two thirds were citizens of Medina, was gathered to forestall the idolaters by occupying the valley of Badr, situated near the sea between Mecca and Medina. When the Prophet saw the army of the infidels approaching the valley, he prayed that the little band of Muslims might not be destroyed.

Victory – Battle Badr is Won

The army of the Meccans advanced into the open space which separated the Muslims from the idolaters. According to Arab usage, the battle was began by simple combats. The engagement that became general. The result of the battle was that the Meccans were driven back with great loss. Several of their chiefs were slain, including Abu Jahl.

Allah’s Apostle set rules for treatment of POWs

A large number of idolaters remained prisoners in the hands of the Muslims. They were, contrary to all usage and traditions of the Arabs, treated with the greatest humanity.

The Prophet gave strict orders that sympathy should be shown to them in their misfortune and that they should be treated with kindness. These instructions were faithfully obeyed by the Muslims to whose care the prisoners were confided. Dealing with this event, Sir William Muir, in his book Life of Muhammad PBUH, quotes one of the prisoners saying: “Blessing be on the men of Medina; they made us ride, while they themselves walked; they gave us wheaten bread to eat, when there was little of it, contenting themselves with dates.” Almighty Allah said:

“And Allah has already made you victorious at Badr, when you were a weak little force. So fear Allah much (abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which He has forbidden and love Allah much, perform all kinds of good deeds which He has ordained) that you may be grateful. (Remember) when you (Muhammad PBUH) said to the believers, “is it not enough for you that your Lord (Allah) should help you with three thousand angels; sent down? Yes, if you hold on to patience and piety, and the enemy comes rushing at you; your Lord will help you with five thousand angels having marks of distinction. Allah made it not but as a message of good news for you and as an assurance to your hearts. And there is no victory except from Allah the All Mighty, the All Wise. That He might cut off a part of those who disbelieve, or expose them to infamy, so that they retire frustrated.” (Ch 3:123-127 Quran).

The remarkable circumstances, which led to the victory of Badr, and results, which followed from it, made a deep impression on the minds of the Muslims; the angels of the heaven had battled on their side against their enemies. The division of the spoils created some dissension between the Muslim warriors. For the moment, the Prophet divided it equally among all. Subsequently, a Qur’an revelation laid down a rule for future division of the spoils. According to this rule, a fifth was reserved for the public treasury for the support of the poor and indigent, while the distribution of the remaining four fifths was left to the discretion of the Chief of the State.

Makkan Avenge Loss in Badr – Battle of Uhud

The next battle between the Quraish and the Muslims was the battle of Uhud, a hill about four miles to the north of Medina. The idolaters, to revenge their loss at Badr, made tremendous preparations for a new attack upon the Muslims. They collected an army of three thousand strong men, of whom seven hundred were armed with coats of mail, and two hundred horses. These forces advanced under the conduct of Abu Sufyan and encamped at a village six miles from Medina, where they gave themselves up to spoiling the fields and flocks of the Medinites. The Prophet, being much inferior to his enemies in number, at first determined to keep himself within the town and to receive them there; but afterwards, the advice of some of his companions prevailing he marched out against them at the head of one thousand men, of whom one hundred were armed with coats of mail; but he had no more than one horse, besides his own, in his whole army. With these forces he halted at Mount Uhud. He was soon abandoned by Abdullah Ibn Ubai, the leader of the Hypocrites, with three hundred of his followers. Thus, the small force of the Prophet was reduced to seven hundred.

At Mount Uhud the Muslim troops passed the night, and in the morning, after offering their prayers, they advanced into the plain. The Prophet contrived to have the hill at his back, and, the better to secure his men from being surrounded, he placed fifty archers on the height in the rear, behind the troops, and gave them strict orders not to leave their posts whatever might happen. When they came to engage, the Prophet had superiority at first. But afterward, his archers left their position for the sake of plunder, thus allowing the enemy to attack the Muslims in the fear and surround them. The Prophet lost the day and very nearly lost his life. He was struck down by a shower of stones and wounded in the face by two arrows, and one of his front teeth was broken. Of the Muslims, seventy men were killed, among whom was the Prophet’s uncle Hamza. Of the infidels, twenty-two men were lost.

Exhausted Quraish leave Madina victorious

The Quraish were too exhausted to follow up their advantage, either by attacking Medina or bydriving the Muslims from the heights of Uhud. They retreated from the Medinite territories afterbarbarously mutilating the corpses of their dead enemies.Almighty Allah said:

“So do not become weak (against your enemy), nor be sad, and you will be superior (in victory) if you are indeed (true) believers. If a wound (and killing ) has touched you, be sure a similar wound (and killing) has touched the others. And so are the days (good and not so good), We give to men by turns, that Allah may test those who believe, and that He may take martyrs from among you. And Allah likes not the Zalimeen (polytheists and wrongdoers). And that Allah may test (or purify) the believers (from sins) and destroy the disbeliveers. Do you think that you will enter Paradise before Allah tests those of you who fought (in His Cause) and (also) tests those who are patient? You did indeed wish for death (Ash-shahadah- martyrdom) before you met it. Now you have seen it openly with your own eyes.” (Ch 3:139-143 Quran)

Allah the Exalted also said:

“We shall cast terror into the hearts of those who disbelieve, because they joined others in worship with Allah for which He has sent no authority; their abode will be the Fire and how evil is the abode of the Zalimeen (polytheists and wrong-doers). And Allah did indeed fulfil His Promise to you when you were killing them (your enemy) with His Permission; until (the moment) you lost your courage and fell to disputing about the order, and disobeyed after He showed you (of the booty) which you love. Among you are some that desire this world and some that desire the Hereafter. Then He made you flee from them (your enemy), and He might test you. But surely, He forgave you, and Allah is most Gracious to the believers. And remember when you ran away (dreadfully) without even a casting a side-glance at anyone, and the Messenger (Muhammad PBUH) was in your rear calling you back. There did Allah give you one distress after another by way of requital to teach you not to grieve for that which had escaped you, nor that which had befallen you. And Allah is Well Aware of all that you do. Then after the distress, He sent down security for you. Slumber overtook a party of you, while another party was thinking about themselves (as how to save their ownselves, ignoring the others and the Prophet) and thought wrongly of Allah – the thought of ignorance. They said, “Have we any part in the affair?” Say you (O Muhammad PBUH): “Indeed the affair belongs wholly to Allah.” They hide within themselves what they dare not reveal to you, saying: “If we had anything to do with the affair, none of us would have been killed here.” Say: “Even if you had remained in your homes, those for whom death was decreed would certainly have gone forth to the place of their death,” but that Allah might test what is in your breasts; and to Mahis (to test, to purify, to get rid of) that which was in your hearts (sins), and Allah is All Knower of what is in (your) breasts.” (Ch 3:151-154 Quran).

Narrated Al-Baraa’ Ibn Azib: “The Prophet appointed Abdullah Ibn Jubair as the commander of the infantry men (archers) who were fifty on the day (of the battle) of Uhud. He instructed them: ‘Stick to your place, and don’t leave it even if you see birds snatching us, till I send for you; and if you see that we have defeated the infidels and made them flee, even then you should not leave your place till I send for you.’ Then the infidels were defeated. By Allah I saw the women fleeing lifting up their clothes revealing their leg bangles and their legs. So, the companions of Abdullah Ibn Jubair said: “The booty! O people, the booty! Your companions have become victorious, what are you waiting for now?” Abdullah Ibn Jubair said: “Have you forgotten what Allah’s Messenger said to you?” They replied: “By Allah! We will go to the people (the enemy) and collect our share from the war booty.” But when they went to them, they were forced to turn back defeated. At that time Allah’s Messenger in their rear was calling them back. Only twelve men remained with the Prophet, and the infidels martyred seventy men from us.

“The Prophet and his companions caused the Pagans to lose one hundred and forty men, seventy of whom were captured and seventy were killed. Then Abu Sufyan asked three times: ‘Is Muhammad PBUH present among these people?’ The Prophet ordered his companions not to answer him. Then he asked three times: ‘Is Ibn Abu Quhafa present amongst these people?’ He asked again three times: ‘Is Ibn Al Khattab present among these people?’ He then returned to his companions and said: ‘As for these (men), they have been killed.’ ‘Umar could not control himself and said to Abu Sufyan: ‘ You told a lie, by Allah! O enemy of Allah! All those you have mentioned are alive, and the thing which will make you unhappy is still there.’ Abu Sufyan said: ‘Our victory today compensates for yours in the Battle of Badr, and in war (the victory) is always undecided and is shared in turns by the belligerents. You will find some of your killed men mutilated, but I did not urge my men to do so, yet I do not feel sorry for their deed.’ After that he started reciting cheerfully: ‘O Hubal, be superior!’ On that the Prophet said (to his companions): ‘Why don’t you answer him back?’ They said: ‘O Allah’s Messenger! What shall we say?’ He said: ‘Say, Allah is Higher and more Sublime.’ Then Abu Sufyan said: ‘We have the idol of Al-Uzza, and you have no ‘Uzza.’ The Prophet said (to his companions): ‘Why don’t you answer him back?’ They asked: ‘O Allah’s Messenger! What shall we say?’ He said: ‘Say Allah is our Helper and you have no helper.'” (Sahih Al Bukhari)

The moral effect of this disastrous battle was such as to encourage some neighboring nomad tribes to make forays upon the Medinte territories, but most of these were repelled.

More Mutiny as Charter members cause dissent

The Jews also were not slow to involve in trouble the Prophet and his followers. They tried to create disaffection among his people and slandered him and his adherents. They mispronounced the words of the Qur’an so as to give them an offensive meaning. They also caused their poets, who were superior in culture and intelligence, to use their influence to sow sedition among the Muslims. One of their distinguished poets, called Ka’b, of the Bani An-Nadir, spared no efforts in publicly deploring the ill success of the idolaters after their defect at Badr.

By his satires against the Prophet and his disciples, and his elegies on the Meccans who had fallen at Badr, Ka’b succeeded in exciting the Quraish to that frenzy of vengeance which broke out at Uhud. He then returned to Medina, where he continued to attack the Prophet and the Muslims, men and women, in terms of the most obscene character. Though he belonged to the tribe of Bani An Nadir, which had entered into the compact with the Muslims and pledged itself both for the internal and external safety of the State, he openly directed his acts against the commonwealth of which he was a member.

Another Jew, Sallam by name, of the same tribe, behaved equally fiercely and bitterly against the Muslims. He lived with a party of his tribe at Khaibar, a village five days’ journey northwest of Medina. He made every effort to excite the neighboring Arab tribes against the Muslims. The Muslim commonwealth with the object of securing safety among the community, passed a sentence of outlawry upon Ka’b and Sallam.

The members of another Jewish tribe, namely Bani Qainuqa’, were sentenced to expulsion from the Medinite territory for having openly and knowingly infringed the terms of the compact. It was necessary to put an end to their hostile actions of the sake of maintaining peace and security. The Prophet had to go to their headquarters, where he required them to enter definitively into the Muslim commonwealth by embracing Islam or to leave Medina. To this they replied in the most offensive terms: “You have had a quarrel with men ignorant of the art of war. If you are desirous of having any dealings with us, we shall show you that we are men.” They then shut themselves up in their fortress and set the Prophet and his authority at defiance. The Muslims decided to reduce them and laid siege to their fortress without loss of time. After fifteen days they surrendered. Though the Muslims at first intended to inflict some severe punishment on them, they contented themselves by banishing the Bani Qainuqa’.

The Bani An-Nadir had now behaved in the same way as Bani Qainuqa’. The had likewise, knowingly and publicly, disregarded the terms of the Charter. The Prophet sent them a message similar to that which was sent to their brethren, the Qainuqa’. Then, relying on the assistance of the Hypocrites’ party, returned for a defiant reply. After a siege of fifteen days, they sued for terms. The Muslims renewed their previous offer, and the Jews of An Nadir chose to execute Medina. They were allowed to take with them all their movable property, with the exception of their arms. Before leaving Medina, they destroyed all their dwellings in immovable property and arms which they could not carry away with them were distributed by the Prophet with the consent of the Ansar and the Emigrants. A principle was henceforth adopted that any acquisition not made in actual warfare should belong to that state and that its disposal should be left to the discretion of the ruling authorities.

Almighty Allah said: (And there is also a share in this booty) for the poor emigrants, who were expelled from their homes and their property, seeking Bounties from Allah and to please Him. And helping Allah (helping His Religion) and His Messenger (Muhammad PBUH). Such are indeed the truthful (to what we say); and those who, before them, had homes (in Al Madina) and had adopted the Faith, love, those who emigrate to them, and have no jealousy in their breasts for that which they have been given (from the booty of Bani An Nadir), and give them (emigrants) preference over themselves, even though they were in need of that. And whosoever is saved from his own covetousness, such are they who will be the successful.” (Ch 59:8-9 Quran)

The expulsion of the Bani An-Nadir took place in the fourth year of the hijrah. The remaining portion of this year and the early part of the next were passed in repressing the hostile attempts of the nomadic tribes against the Muslims and inflicting punishment for various murderous forays on the Medinite territories. Of this nature was the expedition against the Christian Arabs of Dumat Al Jandal (a place about seven days’ journey to the south of Damascus), who had stopped the Medinites traffic with Syria and even threatened a raid upon Medina. These marauders, however, fled on the approach of the Muslims, and the Prophet returned to Medina after concluding a treaty with a neighboring chief, to whom he granted permission of pasturage in the Medinite territories.

Enemy’s Army (headed by Abu Sufyan) march towards Madina

In the same year, the enemies of Islam made every possible attempt to stir up the tribes against the Muslims. The Jews also took an active, if hidden, part in those intrigues. An army of ten thousand well-equipped men, marched towards Medina under the command of Abu Sufyan. They encamped near Mount Uhud, a few miles from the city. The Muslims could gather only an army of three thousand men. Seeing their inferiority in numbers on the one hand, and the turbulence of the Hypocrites within the town on the other, they preferred to remain on the defensive. They dug a deep moat round the unprotected quarters of Medina and encamped outside the city with a trench in front of them. They relied for safety of the other side upon their allies, the Quaraiza, who possessed several fortresses at a short distance towards the south and were bound by the compact to assist the Muslim s against any raiders. These Jews, however, were induced by the idolaters to violate their pledge and to join the Quraish. As these Jews were acquainted with the Hypocrites within the walls of the city were waiting for an opportunity to play their part, the situation of the Muslims was most dangerous.

The siege had already lasted for twenty days. The enemy made great efforts to cross the trench, but every attempt was fiercely repulsed by the small Muslim force. Disunion was now rife in the midst of the besieging army. Their horses were perishing fast, and provisions were becoming less every day. During the night, a storm of wind and rain caused their tents to be overthrown and their lights extinguished. Abu Sufyan and the majority of his army fled, and the rest took refuge with the Quraiza. The Muslims, though they were satisfied with the failure of their enemies, could not help thinking that the victory was unsatisfactory so long as the Quraiza, who had violated their sworn pledge, remained so near. The Jews might at any time surprise Medina from their side. The Muslims felt it their duty to demand an explanation of the violation of the pledge. This was utterly refused. Consequently, the Jews were besieged and compelled to surrender at discretion. They only asked that their punishment should be left to the judgment of Sa’d Ibn Mu’adh, the prince of the tribe of Aws. This chief, who was a fierce soldier, had been wounded in the attack, and, indeed, died of his wounds the following day. Infuriated by the treacherous conduct of the Bani Quraiza, he gave judgment that the fighting men should be to death and that the women and children should become the slaves of the Muslims. The sentence was carried into execution.

The Prophet protects the Christians of Madina

It was about this time that the Prophet granted to the monks of the Monastry of St. Catherine, near Mount Sinai, his liberal charter by which they secured for the Christians noble and generous privileges and immunities. He undertook himself and enjoined his followers, to protect the Christians, to defend their churches and the residences of their priests and to guard them from all injuries. They were not to be unfairly taxed; no bishop was to be driven out of his diocese; nor Christian was to be forced to reject his religion; no monk was to be expelled from his Monastry; no pilgrim was to be stopped from his pilgrimage; nor were the Christian churches to be pulled down for the sake of building mosques or houses for the Muslims. Christian women married to Muslims were to enjoy their own religion and not to be subjected to compulsion or annoyance of any kind. If the Christians should stand in need of assistance for the repair of their churches or monasteries, or any other matter pertaining to their religion, the Muslims were to assist them. This was not to be considered as supporting their religion, but as simply rendering them assistance in special circumstances. Should the Muslims be engaged in hostilities with outside Christians, no Christian resident among the Muslims should be treated with contempt on account of his creed. The Prophet declared that any Muslim violating any clause of the charter should be regarded as a transgressor of Allah’s commandments, a violator of His testament and neglectful of His faith.

The Treaty of Hudaibiya

Six years had already elapsed since the Prophet and his Meccan followers had fled from their birthplace. Their hearts began to yearn for their homes and for their Sacred House the Ka’ba. As the season of the pilgrimage approached, the Prophet announced his intention to visit the holy center, and numerous voices of his disciples responded to the call. Preparations were soon made for the journey to Mecca. The Prophet, accompanied by seven or eight hundred Muslims, Emigrants and Ansars, all totally unarmed, set out on the pilgrimage. The Quraish, who were still full of animosity towards the Muslims, gathered a large army to prevent them from entering Mecca and maltreated the envoy whom the Prophet had sent to ask permission to visit the holy places. After much difficulty, a treaty was concluded by which it was agreed that all hostilities should cease for ten years; that anyone coming from the Quraish to the Prophet without the permission of the guardian or chief should be given back to the idolaters; that any Muslim persons going over to the Meccans should not be surrendered; that any tribe desirous of entering into alliance, either with the Quraish or with the Muslims, should be at liberty to do so without disputes; that the Muslims should go back to Medina on the present occasion and stop advancing further; that they should be permitted in the following year to visit Mecca and to remain there for three days with the arms they used on journeys, namely, their scimitars in sheaths. The Treaty of Hudaibiya thus ended, the Prophet returned with his people to Medina.

Prophet Muhammad PBUH dispatches envoys

About this time it was revealed to the Prophet that his mission should be universal. He dispatched several envoys to invite the neighboring sovereigns to Islam. The embassy to the king of Persia, Chosroes Parvis, was received with disdain and contumely. He was haughtily amazed at the boldness of the Mecca fugitive in addressing him on terms of equality. He was so enraged that he tore up into pieces the Prophet’s letter of invitation to Islam and dismissed the envoy from his presence with great contempt. When the Prophet received information on this treatment, he calmly observed: “Thus will the Empire of Chosroes be torn to pieces.”

Heraclius submits to Almighty God and embraces Islam

The embassy to Heraclitus, the Emperor of the Romans, was received much more politely and reverentially. He treated the ambassador with great respect and sent the Prophet a gracious reply to his message. Another envoy was sent to an Arab price of the Ghassanite tribe, a Christian feudatory of Heraclius. This prince, instead of receiving the envoy with any respect, cruelly murdered him. This act caused great consternation among the Muslims, who considered it as an outrage of international obligations. Narrated Abdullah Ibn Abbas: Abu Sufyan Ibn Harb informed me that Heraclius had sent a messenger to him while he had been accompanying a caravan from Quraish. They were merchants doing business in Sham (Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, and Jordan) at the time when Allah’s Messenger had a truce with Abu Sufyan and Quraish infidels. So Abu Sufyan and his companions went to Heraclius at Ilya (Jerusalem). Heraclitus called them in the court and he had all the senior Roman dignitaries around him. He called for his translator who, translating Heraclius’s question, said to them: “Who among you is closely related to that man who claims to be a Prophet?” Abu Sufyan replied: “I am the nearest relative to him (amongst the group).” Heraclius said: “Bring him (Abu Sufyan) close to me and make his companions stand behind him.” Abu Sufyan added: “Heraclius told his translator to tell my companions that he wanted to put some questions to me regarding that man (The Prophet) and if I told a lie they (my companions) should contradict me. By Allah! Had I not been afraid of my companions labeling me a liar, I would have not have spoken the truth about the Prophet.” Abu Sufyan’s narration continues:

“The first question he asked me about him was;What is his family status among you?””I replied: “He belongs to a good noble family amongst us.”Heraclius further asked: “Has anybody among you ever claimed the same (to be a Prophet) before him?”I replied: “No.”He said: “Was anybody amongst his ancestors a king?”I replied: “No.”Heraclius asked: “Do the nobles or the poor follow him?”I replied: “It is the poor who follow him.”He said: “Are his followers increasing or decreasing (day by day)?”I replied: “They are increasing.”He then asked: “Does anybody amongst those who embrace his religion become displeased and renounce the religion afterwards?”I replied: “No.”Heraclius said: “Have you ever accused him of telling lies before his claim (to be a Prophet)?”I replied: “No.”Hereaclius said: “Does he break his promises?”I replied: “No. We are at truce with him but we do not know what he will do in it.” I could not

find opportunity to say anything against him except that.Heraclius asked: “Have you ever had a war with him?”I replied: “Yes.”Then he said: “What was the outcome of the battles?”I replied: “Sometimes he was victorious and sometimes we.”Heraclius said: “What does he order you to do?”

I said: “He tells us to worship Allah and Allah alone and not to worship anything along with Him, and to renounce all that our ancestors had said. He orders us to pray, to speak the truth, to be chaste and to keep good relations with our kith and kin.”

Heraclius asked the translator to convey to me the following: “I asked you about his family and your reply was that he belonged to a very noble family. In fact, all the Messengers come from noble families among their respective peoples. I questioned you whether anybody else among you claimed such a thing; your reply was in the negative. If the answer had been in the affirmative, I would have thought that this man was following the previous man’s statement. Then I asked you whether anyone of his ancestors was a king. Your reply was in the negative, and if it had been in the affirmative, I would have thought that this man wanted to take back his ancestral kingdom. I further asked whether he was ever accused of telling lies before he said what he said and your reply was in the negative. So I wondered how a person who does not tell a lie about others could ever tell a lie about Allah. I then asked you whether the rich people followed him or the poor. You replied that it was the poor who followed him. And, in fact, all the Messengers have been followed by this very class of people. Then I asked you whether his followers were increasing or decreasing. You replied that they were increasing, and, in fact, this is the way of true faith, till it is complete in all respects. I further asked you whether there was anybody, who, after embracing his religion, became displeased and discarded his religion. You reply was in the negative, and, in fact this is (the sign of) true faith, when its delight enters the hearts and mixes with them completely. I asked you whether he had ever betrayed. You replied in the negative, and likewise the Messengers never betray. Then I asked you what he ordered you to do. You replied that he ordered you to worship Allah and Allah alone and not to worship anything along with Him, and forbade you to worship idols, and ordered you to pray, to speak the truth and to be chaste. If what you have said is true, he will very soon occupy this place underneath my feet and I knew it (from the scriptures) that he was going to appear but I did not know that he would be from you, and if I could reach him definitely, I would go immediately to meet him and if I were with him, I would certainly wash his feet.”

Heraclius then asked for the letter addressed by Allah’s Messenger which had been delivered by Dihya to the Governor of Busra, who forwarded it to Heraclius to read. The contents of the letter were as follows: “In the name of Allah, the Beneficent, the Merciful. (This letter is) from Muhammad PBUH, the slave of Allah and His Messenger to Heraclius the ruler of Byzantine. Peace be upon him who follows the right path. Furthermore, I invite you to Islam, and if you become a Muslim you will be safe, and Allah will double your reward, and if you reject this invitation of Islam, you will be committing a sin by misguiding your subjects.

And I recite to you Allah’s Statement: SAY (O Muhammad PBUH): ‘O People of the Scripture (Jews & Christians): Come to a word that is just between us and you, that we worship none but Allah, and that we associate no partners with Him and that none of us shall take others as lords besides Allah.’ Then, if they turn away, say: ‘Bear witness that we are Muslims.’ ”

Abu Sufyan then added: When Heraclius had finished his speech and had read the letter, there was a great hue and cry in the Royal Court. So we turned out of the court. I told my companions that the question of Ibn-Abi-Kabsha (the Prophet Muhammad PBUH) had become so prominent that even the King of Bani Al-Asfar (Byzantine) was afraid of him. Then I started to become sure that he (the Prophet) would be the conqueror in the near future till I embraced Islam (Allah guided me to it). The sub narrator added that Ibn An-Natur was the Governor of Ilya (Jerusalem) and Heraclius was the head of the Christians of Sham. Ibn An-Natur narrated that once while Heraclius was visiting Ilya (Jerusalem), he got up in the morning with a sad mood. Some of his priests asked him why he as in that mood. Hreaclius was a foreteller and an astrologer. He replied: “At night when I looked at the stars, I saw that the leader of those who practice circumcision had appeared (become the conqueror). Who are they who practice circumcision?” The people replied: “Except the Jews, nobody practices circumcision, so you should not be afraid of them (Jews). Just Issue orders to kill every Jew present in the country.’

While they were discussing it, a messenger sent by the king of Ghassan to convey the news of Allah’s Messenger to Heraclius was brought in. Having heard the news, he (Heraclius) ordered the people to go and see whether the messenger of Ghassan was circumcised. The people, after seeing him, told Heraclius that he was circumcised. Heraclius then asked him about the Arabs. The messenger replied: “Arabs also practice circumcision.”

After hearing that Heraclius remarked that sovereignty of the Arabs had appeared. Heraclius then wrote a letter to his friend in Rome who was as good as Heraclius in knowledge. Heraclius then left for Homs (a town in Syria) and stayed there till he received the reply of his letter from his friend, who agreed with him in his opinion about the emergence of the Prophet and the fact that he was a Prophet. On that, Heraclius invited all the heads of the Byzantines to assemble in his palace at Homs. When they assembled, he ordered that all the doors of his palace be closed. Then he came out and said: “O Byzantines! If success is your desire and if you seek right guidance and want your empire to remain, then give a pledge of allegiance to this Prophet (embrace Islam).” (on hearing the views of Heraclius) the people ran towards the gates of the palace like onagers but found the doors closed. Heraclius realized their hatred towards Islam and when he lost the hope of their embracing Islam, he ordered that they should be brought back in audience. (When they returned) he said: “What was already said was just to test the strength of your conviction and I have seen it.” The people prostrated before him and became pleased with him, and this was the end of Heraclius’s story (in connection with his faith). (Sahih Al-Bukhari)

Attack from the Jews of Khaibar thwarted

In the same year the Jews of Khaibar, a strongly fortified territory at a distance of four days’ journey from Medina, showed implacable hatred towards the Muslims. United by alliance with the tribe of Ghatfan, as well as with other cognate tribes, the Jews of Khaibar made serious attempts to for ma coalition against the Muslims. The Prophet and his adherents were apprised of this movement and immediate measures were taken in order to repress any new attack upon Medina. An expedition of fourteen hundred men was soon prepared to march against Khaibar. The allies of the Jews left them to face the war with the Muslims all alone. The Jews firmly resisted the attacks of the Muslims, but eventually all their fortress had to be surrendered, one after the other to their enemies. They prayed for forgiveness, which was accorded to them on certain conditions. Their lands and immovable property were secured to them, together with the free practice of their religion. After subduing Khaibar, the Muslims returned to Medina in safety.

Allah’s Messenger and the Muslims perfom Hajj

Before the end of the year, it being the seventh year of the hijrah, the Prophet and his adherents availed themselves of their armistice with the Quraish to visit the holy Ka’ba. The Prophet, accompanied by two hundred Muslims, went to Mecca to perform the rites of pilgrimage. On this occasion the Quraish evacuated the city during the three days which the ceremonies lasted. Sir William Muir, in his book, Life of Mohammed Vol. III comments on the incident as follows: It was surely a strange sight, which at this time presented itself at the vale of Mecca, a sight unique in the history of the world. The ancient city is for three days evacuated by all its inhabitants, high and low, every house deserted, and as they retire, the exiled converts, many years banished from their birth-place, approach in a great body accompanied by their allies, revisit the empty homes of their childhood, and within the short allotted space, fulfil the rites of pilgrimage. The outside inhabitants, climbing the heights around take refuge under tents or other shelter among the hills and glens; and clustering on the overhanging peak of Abu Qubeis, thence watch the movements of the visitors beneath, as with the Prophet at their head, they make the circuit of the Ka’ba and rapid procession between Essafa and Marwah, and anxiously scan every figure, if perchance they may recognize among the worshippers some long lost friend or relative. It was a scene rendered only by the throes, which gave birth to Islam.

In accordance with the terms of the treaty, the Muslims left Mecca at the end of three day’s visit. This peaceful visit was followed by important conversions among the Quraish. Khalid Ibn Al-Walid, known as the Sword of Allah, who, before this, had been a bitter enemy of Islam and who commanded the Quraish cavalry at Uhud; and Amr Ibn Al’ As, another important character and warrior, adopted the new faith.

Retribution for the Murder of the Muslim Envoy

When the Prophet and his followers returned to Medina, they arranged in expedition to exact retribution from the Ghassanite prince who had killed the Muslim envoy. A force of three thousand men, under the Prophet’s adopted son Zaid, was sent to take reparation from the offending tribe.

Khalid Ibn Al-Walid was one of the generals chosen for the expedition. When they reached the neighborhood of Muta, a village to the southeast of the Dead Sea, they met with an overwhelming force of Arabs and Romans who were assembled to oppose them. The Muslims, however, resolved resolutely to push forward. Their courage was of no avail and they suffered great losses. In this battle Zaid and Ja’far, a cousin of the Prophet, and several other notables were killed. Khalid Ibn Al-Walid, by a series of maneuvers, succeeded in drawing off the army and conducting it without further loses to Medina. A month later, however, Amr Ibn Al-‘ As marched unopposed through the lands of the hostile tribes, received their submission, and restored the prestige of Islam on the Syrian frontier.

Quraish violate terms of Hudaibiya, Prophets army march against Idolators

About the end of the seventh year of the hijrah, the Quraish and their allies, the Bani Bakr, violated the terms of the peace concluded at Hudaibiya by attacking the Bani Khuzaah, who were in alliance with the Muslims. The Bani Khuzzah appealed to the Prophet for help and protection. The Prophet determined to make a stop to the reign of injustice and oppression, which had lasted so long at Mecca. He immediately gathered ten thousand men to march against the idolaters and set out on January, 630.

After eight days the Muslims army halted, and alighted at Marr Az-Zahran, a day’s journey from Mecca. On the night of their arrival, Abu Sufyan, who was delegated by the Quraish to ask the Prophet to abandon his project, presented himself and besought an interview. In the morning it was granted. “Has the time not come, O Abu Sufyan,” said the Prophet, “for you to acknowledge that there is no deity save Allah and that I am His Messenger?” Abu Sufyan, after hesitating for awhile, pronounced the prescribed formula of belief and adopted Islam. He was then sent back to prepare the city for the Prophet’s approach.

With the exception of a slight resistance by certain clans headed by Ikrima and Safwan, in which many Muslims were killed, the Prophet entered Mecca almost unopposed. The city which had treated him so cruelly, driven him and his faithful band for refuge among strangers, the city which had sworn his life and the lives of his devoted adherents, now lay at his mercy. His old persecutors were now completely at his feet. The Prophet entered Mecca on his favorite camel Al Kaswa, having Usama Ibn Zaid sitting behind him. On his way he recited Surah Al Fath (Victory), the first verses of which maybe interpreted thus:

“Verily! We have given you (O Muhammad PBUH) a manifest victory. That Allah may forgive you your sins of the past and future, and complete His Favor on you, and guide you on the Straight Path; and that Allah may help you with strong help. (Ch 48:1-3 Quran)

Prophet Muhammad PBUH (saw) orders the destruction of the idols

The Muslim army entered the city unpretentiously and peacefully. No house was robbed, no man or woman was insulted. The Prophet granted a general amnesty to the entire population of Mecca. Only four criminals, whom justice condemned, were proscribed. He did however, order the destruction of all idols and pagan images of worship, upon which three hundred and fifty idols which were in the Sacred House of Ka’ba were thrown down. The Prophet himself destroyed a wooden pigeon hung from the roof and regarded as one of the deities of the Quraish. During the downfall of the images and idols he was heard to cry aloud: “Allah is great. Truth has come and falsehood has vanished; verily falsehood is fleeting.” The old idolaters observed thoughtfully the destruction of their gods, which were utterly powerless. After the Prophet had abolished these pagan idols and every pagan rite, he delivered a sermon to the assembled people. He dwelt upon the natural brotherhood of man in the words of the Qur’an:

“O Mankind! We have created you for a male and a female, and made you into nations and tribes, that you may know one another. Verily, the most honorable of you in the Sight of Allah is that (believer) who has At-Taqwa (one of the Muttaqun, pious, and righteous persons who fear Allah much, abstain from all kinds of sins and evil deeds which He has forbidden), and love Allah much (perform all kinds of good deeds which He has ordained.) Verily Allah is All-Knowing, All-Aware. (Ch 49:13 Quran)

Narrated Hisham’s father: When Allah’s Messenger set out (towards Mecca) during the year of the Conquest (of Mecca) and this news reached (the infidels of Quraish), Abu Sufyan, Hakim Ibn Hizam and Budail Ibn Waraqa came out to gather information about Allah’s Messenger. They proceeded on their way till they reached a place called Marr-az-Zahran (which is near Mecca). Behold! There they saw many fires as if they were the fires of Arafat.” Budail Ibn Waraqa’ said: “Banu’ Amr are less in number than that.” Some of the guards of Allah’s Messenger saw them and took them over, caught them, and bthem to Allah’s Messenger. Abu Sufyan embraced Islam. When the Prophet proceeded, he said to Al’ Abbas: “Keep Abu Sufyan standing at the top of the mountain so that he would look at the Muslims. SO Al- Abbas kept him standing (at that place) and the tribes with the Prophet started passing in front of Abu Sufyan in military batches. A batch passed in front of Abu Sufyan and said: “O ‘Abbas who are these?” ‘Abbas said: “They are Banu Ghaifar.” Abu Sufyan said: “I have got nothing to do with Ghifar.” Then a batch of the tribe of Juhaina passed by and he said similarly as above. Then a batch of the tribe of Sa’d Ibn Huzaim passed by and he said similarly as above. Then came a batch, the like of which Abu Sufyan had not seen. He said: “Who are these?” Abbas said: “They are the Ansar headed by Sa’d Ibn ‘Ubada, the one holding the flag.” Sa’d Ibn ‘Ubada said: “O Abu Sufyan! Today is the day of a great battle and today (what is prohibited in )the Ka’ba will be permissible.” Abu Sufyan said, “O Abbas! How excellent the day of destruction is!” Then came another batch of warriors which was the smallest of all the batches, and in it there was Allah’s Messenger and his companions, and the flag of the Prophet was carried by Az-Zubair Ibn Al-Awwam. When Allah’s Messenger passed by Abu Sufyan, the latter said to the Prophet: “Do you know what Sa’d Ibn Ubada said?” The Prophet said: “What did he say?” Abu Sufyan said: “He said so-and-so.” The Prophet said: “Sa’d told a lie, but today Allah will give superiority to the Ka’ba and today the Ka’ba will be covered with a cloth covering.” Allah’s Messenger ordered that his flag be fixed at Al-Hajun.

Narrated Urwa: Nafi’ Ibn Jubair Ibn Mut’im said: “I heard Al-Abbas saying to Az-Zubair Ibn Al-Awwam, ‘O Abu Abdullah! Did Allah’s Messenger order you to fix the flag here?’ “Allah’s Messenger ordered Khalid Ibn Al-Walid to enter Mecca from its upper part from Kadaa’ while the Prophet himself entered from Kudaa. Two men from the cavalry of Khalid Ibn Al-Walid named Hubaish Ibn Al Ashar and Kurz Ibn Jabir Al-Fihri were martyred on that day. (Sahih Al Bukhari) Now great multitudes came to adopt Islam and take the oath of allegiance to the Prophet. For this purpose an assembly was held at As-Safa Mountain. Umar, acting as the Prophet’s deputy administered the oath, whereby the people bound themselves not to adore any deity but Allah to obey the Prophet to abstain from theft, adultery, infanticide, lying and backbiting. Thus was fulfilled the prophecy embodied in the Surah Al Fath in the Quran.

During his stay at Mecca, the Prophet dispatched his principal disciples in every direction to preach Islam among the wild tribes of the desert and call them to the true religion of Allah. He sent small detachments of his troops into the suburbs who destroyed the temples of Al Uzza, Suwaa, and Manat, the three famous idols in the temples of the neighboring tribes. The Prophet gave strict orders that these expeditions should be carried out in a peaceable manner. These injunctions were obeyed in all cases, with one exception. The troops under Khalid Ibn Al-Walid, the fierce newly-converted warrior, killed a few of the Bani Jazima. When the news of this wanton bloodshed reached the Prophet, he was deeply grieved and exclaimed: “Oh, my Lord, I am innocent of what Khalid has done.” He dispatched a large sum of money for the widows and orphans of the slain and severely rebuked Khalid.

At this time the tribes of Hawazin and Thakif showed unwillingness to render obedience to the Muslims without resistance. They formed a league with the intention of attacking the Prophet, but he was vigilant enough to frustrate their plan. A big battle was fought with this new enemy of Islam near Hunain, a deep and narrow defile nine miles northeast of Mecca. The idolaters were utterly defeated. One body of the enemy, consisting chiefly of the Thakif tribe, took refuge in their fortified city of Ta’if, which eight or nine years before had dismissed the Prophet from within its walls with injuries and insults. The remainder of the defeated force, consisting principally of the Hawazin, sought at a camp in the valley of Autas. This camp was raided by the Muslim troops. The families of the Hawazin, their flocks and herds with all their other effects, were captured by the troops of the Prophet. Ta’if was then besieged for a few days only, after which the Prophet raised the siege, well knowing that the people of Ta’if would soon be forced by circumstances to submit without bloodshed. Returning to his camp where the prisoners of Hawazin were left safely, the Prophet found a deputation from this hostile tribe who begged him to set free their families. The Prophet replied that he was willing to give back his own share of those captives and that of the children of Abdul Muttalib, but that he could not force his followers to abandon the fruits of their victory. The disciples followed the generous example of their teacher. The hearts of several members of the Thakir tribe were so influenced by this that they offered their allegiance and soon became earnest Muslims. The Prophet now returned to Medina fully satisfied with the achievements of his mission.

The ninth year of the hijrah is known as the Year of Embassies, as being the year in which the various tribes of Arabia submitted to the claim of the Prophet and sent embassies to render homage to him.

These tribes had been awaiting the issue of the war between Muhammad PBUH and the Quraish; but as soon as the tribe – the principal of the whole nation and the descendants of Ishmael, whose prerogatives none offered to dispute – had submitted, they were satisfied that it was not in their power to oppose Muhammad PBUH. Hence their embassies flocked into Medina to make their submission to him. The conquest of Mecca decided the fate of idolatry in Arabia. Now deputations began to arrive from all sides to render the adherence to Islam of various tribes. Among the rest, five princes of the tribe of Himyar professed Islam and sent ambassadors to notify Muhammad PBUH of the same. These were the princes of Yemen, Mahra, Oman, and Yamama. The idolaters of Ta’if, the very people who had driven the Messenger of Islam from their midst with violence and contempt, now sent a deputation to pray forgiveness and ask to be numbered among his followers. They begged, however, for temporary preservation of their idols. As a last appeal they begged for one month of grace only. But even this was not conceded. The Prophet said Islam and the idols could not exist together. They then begged for exemption from the daily prayers. The Prophet replied that without devotion, religion would be nothing. At last they submitted to all that was required of them. They, however, asked to be exempted from destroying the idols with their own hands. This was granted. The Prophet selected Abu Sufyan and Mughira to destroy the idols of Ta’if, the chief of which was the notorious idol of Al-Lat. This was carried out amidst cries of despair and grief from the women of Ta’if.

The conversion of this tribe of Ta’if is worthy of notice. This tribe, which hither to had proved hostile to the new faith, was noted among the Arabs for its idolatrous priesthood. A small detachment under Ali was sent to reduce them to obedience and to destroy their idols. The prince of the tribe was ‘Adi, the son of the famous Hatim, whose generosity was spoken of all over Arabia. On the approach of the Muslim force, Adi fled to Syria, leaving his sister with his principal clansmen, to fall into the hands of the Muslims. These were conducted by Ali with every sign of respect and sympathy to Medina. When the daughter of Hatim came before the Prophet, she addressed him in the following words: “Messenger of Allah, my father is dead; my brother, my only relation fled into the mountains on the approach of the Muslims. I cannot ransom myself; I count on your generosity for my deliverance. My father was an illustrious man, the prince of his tribe, a man who ransomed prisoners, protected the honor of women, fed the poor, cothe afflicted, and was deaf to no appeal.” The Prophet replied: “Your father had the virtues of a true Muslim; if it were permitted to invoke the mercy of Allah on any whose life was passed in idolatry, I would pray to Allah for mercy for the soul of Hatim.” Then, addressing the Muslims around him, he said: “the daughter of Hatim is free, her father was a generous and humane man; Allah loves and rewards the merciful.” With the daughter of Hatim, all her people were set at liberty. She proceeded to Syria and related to her brother the generosity of Muhammad PBUH. ‘Adi, touched by gratitude, hastened to Medina, where he was kindly received by the Prophet. He professed Islam and returned to his people and persuaded them to abandon idolatry. They all submitted and became devoted Muslims.

Hitherto no prohibition had been enforced against idolaters entering the Holy Ka’ba, or performing their abominable rites within the sacred precincts. Towards the end of the ninth year of the hijrah, during the month of pilgrimage ‘Ali was delegated by the Prophet to read a proclamation that ran as follows: “No idolater shall after this year perform the pilgrimage; no one shall make the circuit of the Ka’ba naked (such a disgraceful custom was practiced by the pagan Arabs); and treaty with the Prophet shall continue in force but four months are allowed to every man to return to his territories; after that there will be no obligation on the Prophet, except towards those with whom treaties have been concluded.”

The vast multitude who had listened to the above declaration returned to their homes, and before the following year was over the majority of them were Muslims. During the tenth year of the hijrah, as in the preceding one, numerous embassies continued to pour into Medina from all parts of Arabia, to testify to the allegiance of their chiefs and their tribes. Teachers were sent by the Prophet into the different provinces to teach the new converts the principles and precepts of Islam. These teachers were invariably given the following injunctions when they were about to depart on their mission: “Deal gently with the people, and be not harsh; cheer them, and do not look down upon them with contempt. You will meet with many believers in the Holy Scriptures, who will ask you: ‘What is the key to heaven?’ Answer them it (the key to heaven) is to bear witness to the divine truth and to do good.”

Thus, the mission of the Prophet Muhammad PBUH was now accomplished; the whole work was achieved in his lifetime. Idolatry with its nameless abominations was entirely destroyed. The people who were sunk in superstition, cruelty, and vice in regions where spiritual life was utterly unknown were now united in one bond of faith, hope and charity. The tribes which had been from time immemorial engaged in perpetual wars were now united together by the ties of brotherhood, love, and harmony. Henceforth, their aims were not confined to this earth alone; but there was something beyond the grave – much higher, purer, and diviner – calling them to the practice of charity, goodness, justice, and universal love. They could now perceive that Allah was not that which they had carved out of wood or stone, but the Almighty Loving, Merciful, the Creator of the Universe.

Prophet Muhammad’s PBUH last Sermon, mount Arafat

On the return of the sacred month of pilgrimage, the Prophet, under the presentiment of his approaching end, determined to make a farewell pilgrimage to Mecca. In February 632, he left Medina with a very considerable concourse of Muslims. It is stated that from ninety thousand to one hundred and forty thousand people accompanied the Prophet. Before completing all rites of the pilgrimage, he addressed the assembled multitude from the top of Mount Arafat in the following words:

“O people! Listen to my words, for I know not whether another year will be vouchsafed to me after this year to find myself among you. Your lives and property are sacred and inviolable among one another until you appear before the Lord, as this day and this month are sacred for all; and remember, you will have to appear before your Lord Who will demand from you an account for all your actions. O people, you have rights over your wives, and your wives have a right over you. Verily you have taken them on the security of Allah and have made their people lawful unto you by the words of Allah. And your slaves, see that you feed them with such food as you eat yourselves, and clothe them with the stuff you wear, and if they commit a fault which you are not inclined to forgive, then part with them; for they are the servants of the Lord and are not to be harshly treated. O people, listen to my words and understand them. Know that all Muslims are brothers. You are one brotherhood; but no man shall take ought from his brother, unless by his free consent. Keep yourselves from injustice. Let him who is present tell this to him who is absent. It maybe that he who is told this afterward may remember better than he who has now heard it. The Prophet concluded his sermon by exclaiming: “O Lord, I have fulfilled my message and accomplished my work.” The assembled multitude, all in one voice, cried: “Yea, verily you have.” The Prophet again exclaimed: “O Lord, I beseech You, bear witness to it.”

Prophet returns to Madina

Having rigorously performed all the ceremonies of the pilgrimage, that his example might be followed by all Muslims for all succeeding ages, the Prophet returned with his followers to Medina.

The eleventh year of the hijrah, being the last year of Muhammad’s PBUH life, was spent at Medina. There he settled the organization of the provincial and tribal communities which had adopted Islam and become the component parts of the Muslims federation. More officers had to be deputed to the interior provinces for the purpose of teaching their inhabitants the precepts of the religion, administering justice, and collecting Zakat. Muadh Ibn Jabal was sent to Yemen. On his departure to that distant province the Prophet enjoined him to use his own discretion in the event of his being unable to find express authority in the Quran. Ali was deputed to Yamama in the southeast of the peninsula. To him the Prophet said: “Never decide between any two parties who come to you for justice unless you first hear both of them.”

Murders and false claims of Prophethood arise

A force was being prepared under Usama Ibn Zaid, whose father was killed at Muta, against the Byzantines, to exact the long-delayed reparation for the murder of the envoy to Syria. However, the news of the Prophet’s sickness and failing health caused that expedition to be stopped. This news was soon noised abroad and produced disorder in some districts. Three pretenders had arisen who gave themselves out as prophets and tried by all kinds of imposture to win over their tribes. The most dangerous of these pretenders was known as Al Aswad. He was a chief of Yemen and a conjurer. He soon succeeded in gaining over his tribesmen and, with the help, reduced to subjection many of the neighboring towns. He killed Shahr, whom the Prophet had appointed as Governor of Sana in the place of his father Bazan, who had just died. Bazan had been the viceroy of Yemen under Chosroes of Persia; after he had adopted Islam he was allowed by the Prophet to remain as Governor of Yemen. He was able to convert to Islam all the Persian colony in that province. Al-Aswad, the conjurer, had now killed Shahr, but soon after he was massacred by the Persians of Yemen.

The other two pretenders, Tulayha and Haroun by name, were not suppressed until after the death of the Prophet, during the reign of Abu Bakr. Haroun, better known as Mussaylamah, addressed to the Prophet a letter which ran as follows: “From Mussaylamah the Prophet of Allah, to Muhammad PBUH the Prophet of Allah. Peace be to you. I am your partner. Let the exercise of authority be divided between us. Half the earth will be mine, and half will belong to your Quraish. But the Quraish are too greedy to be satisfied with a just division.” To this letter the Prophet replied as follows: “From Muhammad PBUH the Messenger of Allah to Mussaylamah the liar. Peace be to those who follow the right path. The earth belongs to Allah. It is He Who makes the reign whomsoever He pleases. Only those will prosper who fear the Lord.”

Prophet Muhammad’s PBUH last days

The health of the Prophet grew worse. His last days were remarkable for the calmness and serenity of his mind. He was able, though weak and feeble, to lead the public prayers until within three days of his death. He requested that he might be permitted to stay at ‘Aisha’s house close to the mosque during his illness, an arrangement to which his other wives assented. As long as his strength lasted, he took part in the public prayers. The last time he appeared in the mosque he addressed the congregation, after the usual prayers were over, in the following words: “O Muslims, if I have wronged anyone of you, here I am to answer for it; if I owe anything to anyone, all I may happen to possess belongs to you.” A man in the crowd rose and claimed three Dhirhams which he had given to a poor man at the request of the Prophet. They were immediately paid back with these words: “Better to blush in this world than in the next.” The Prophet then prayed and implored Allah’s mercy for those who had fallen in the persecution of their enemies. He recommended to all his followers the observance of religious duties and the leading of a life of peace and goodwill. Then he spoke with emotion and with a voice still so powerful as to reach beyond the outer doors of the mosque: “By the Lord in Whose hand lies the soul of Muhammad PBUH as to myself, no man can lay hold on me in any matter; I have not made lawful anything excepting what Allah has made lawful; nor have I prohibited anything but that which Allah in His Book has prohibited.”

Then turning to the women who sat close by, he exclaimed: “O Fatimah, my, daughter, and Safia, my aunt, work you both that which procure you acceptance with the Lord, for verily I have no power to save you in any wise.” He then rose and re-entered the house of Aisha.

The death of Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him

After this, the Prophet never appeared at public prayers. A few hours after he returned from the mosque, the Prophet died while laying his head on the bosom of Aisha. As soon as the Prophet’s death was announced, a crowd of people gathered at the door of the house of Aisha, exclaiming: “How can our messenger be dead?” Umar said: “No, he is not dead; he will be restored to us, and those are traitors to the cause of Islam who say he is dead. If they say so let them be cut in pieces.” But Abu Bakr entered the house at this moment, and after he had touched the body of the Prophet with a demonstration of profound affection, he appear at the door and addressed the crowd with the following speech: “O Muslims, if anyone of you has been worshipping Muhammad PBUH, then let me tell you that Muhammad PBUH is dead. But if you really do worship Allah then know that Allah is living and will never die. Do you forget the verse in the Quran:

“Muhammad PBUH is not more than a Messenger, and indeed (many) Messengers have passed away before him. If he dies or is killed, will you then turn your back on your heels (as disbeliveers)? And he who turns back on his heels, not the least harm will he do to Allah, and Allah will give reward to those who are grateful.” (Ch 3:144 Quran).

Upon hearing this speech of Abu Bakr, ‘Umar acknowledged his error, and the crowd was satisfied and dispersed.

Al-Abbas, the Prophet’s uncle, presided at the preparation for the burial, and the body was duly washed and perfumed. There was some dispute between the Quraish and the Ansars as to the place of burial; however, Abu Bakr settled the dispute by affirming that he had heard the Prophet say that a prophet should be buried at the very spot where he died. A grave was accordingly dug in the ground within the house of Aisha and under the bed on which the Prophet died. In this grave the body was buried, and the usual rites were performed by those who were present. Thus ended the glorious life of that Prophet Muhammad PBUH.

May the peace and blessings of Allah be upon him. AMEEN


 

I would like to make clear all the visitors of my blog that I am not Rqaqi, Aamil, or Spiritual Healer. Any Raaqi you contact via my blog, know they do not represent this blog or me.

 

In my knowledge these are few dedicated places where you can get your spiritual healing according to Quran and Sunnah. I can recommend these places as in my knowledge they works according to Quran and Sunnah; but I cannot be made responsible either individually or severally for any untoward incidents.

 

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