ADAM, IBRAHIM, & THE KABAH
Compiled By Tara Umm Omar
References cited at the end
THE TRUTH OF PROPHET ADAM (as)
The gradual process of man’s physical development has been referred to in the following Verses of the Holy Quran and Ahadith:
Surah Ar-Rum 30.20: “And among His Signs is this, that He created you (Adam) from dust, and then [Hawwa' (Eve) from Adam's rib, and then his offspring from the semen, and], – behold you are human beings scattered!”
Surah As-Sajdah 32. 7-9: “Who made everything He has created good, and He began the creation of man from clay. Then He made his offspring from semen of worthless water (male and female sexual discharge). Then He fashioned him in due proportion, and breathed into him the soul (created by Allâh for that person), and He gave you hearing (ears), sight (eyes) and hearts. Little is the thanks you give!”
Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, “Allah created Adam, making him 60 cubits tall. When He created him, He said to him, “Go and greet that group of angels, and listen to their reply, for it will be your greeting (salutation) and the greeting (salutations of your offspring.” So, Adam said (to the angels), As-Salamu Alaikum (i.e. Peace be upon you). The angels said, “As-salamu Alaika wa Rahmatu-l-lahi” (i.e. Peace and Allah’s Mercy be upon you). Thus the angels added to Adam’s salutation the expression, ‘Wa Rahmatu-l-lahi,’ Any person who will enter Paradise will resemble Adam (in appearance and figure). People have been decreasing in stature since Adam’s creation. [Sahih Al Bukhari Volume 4, Book 55, Number 543]
Adam is an Arabic word for man. He was the progenitor of human race. He is reckoned to be the first prophet by the Muslims. He was also the first man whom Almighty Allah had created from the elements of clay. The truth pertaining to the origin of all human beings is a matter dear to the hearts of many. People from different walks of life, including various ethnic origins and differing educational backgrounds have attempted explanations, however, no story or explanation can take the place of the truth. In the Quran Allah informed us of the truth regarding the origin of the humans, and His Prophet, Muhammad, explained this matter to his companions, who explained it to their followers, who explained it to their followers, and so on, until the truth reached the people today. Allah created all the other kinds of creations before He created the humankind. Allah created the water, the air, the heavens, the earth, the trees, the mountains, the valleys, the animals and even the small insects–before he created man. Allah created all these kinds of creations in six days. Each day was like one thousand (1,000) years. At the last part of the sixth day, after the ‘Asr time, Adam was created. It was Jumu’ah–Friday.
Adam was not derived from apes or animals similar to apes. The apes existed, as did all the other animal kind, before Adam was created. The truth is: the origin of all the humankind is clay, i.e., soil mixed with water. Allah said in Surah al-Mu’minun 23.12: “And indeed We created man (Adam) out of an extract of clay (water and earth)” which means the kind of human beings (humankind) has a parent material–which is the clay. The origin of this clay was the soil of this earth. According to the latest scientific researches the man has been created from clay with all its element and their inherent properties. It is discovered by a chemical analysis of the human body that a defect occurs in its normal functioning when the quantity of any of these element gets diminished. In such case vitamins are used to supplement the deficiency and restore normal health.
The origin of this clay was the soil of this earth. Allah ordered one of the angels to gather a handful of all the different types of the earth’s soils: the black soil, the white soil, the red soil, and all the colors in between these colors; including the soft soil and the firm soil. This angel took a handful from all these different kinds of soil and brought them to Paradise. This soil was mixed with the water of Paradise and from this mixture, the shape of Adam was formed. Abi Musa al Sha’arai narrated that the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) said: “Allah created Adam from a handful of dust taken from different lands, so the children of Adam have been created according to the composition of the land. Therefore from mankind we have white, red, black and yellow ones; we have good and evil, ease and sorrow, and what comes in between them.” (Sahih al Bukhari). This is why you find among the offspring of Adam–which includes all people–the white, the black, the red, the yellow, those who are easy, those who are difficult, and those who are in between.
THE CREATION OF PROPHET ADAM (as)
We imagine when Allah the Almighty decided to create Adam: He addressed His angels and told them to prostrate before him. He did not mean to ask their opinion or take their advice, for He is above that. Allah the Exalted told them that He was going to create a vicegerent on the earth who would have children and grandchildren who would corrupt the earth by spreading mischief and wickedness and shed each other’s blood. That is why the angels said to Allah the Almighty: “Will You place therein those who will make mischief therein and shed blood!”
There are old traditions about the angels before the creation of Adam. According to Ibn Qatadah, it was said that the angels were informed about the creation of Adam and his progency by the jinn who lived before Adam. Abdullah Ibn Umar said that the jinn had existed for about 2000 years before Adam and then shed blood. Therefore Allah sent on them an army of angels that drove them out to the depths of the seas. Ibn Abi Hatim narrated from Ali jafar Al Baqer that the angels were informed that man would cause wickedness and shed blood on earth. It was also said that they knew that no one would be created on earth who would not be wicked and shed blood. Before the creation of mortal, Almighty Allah directed all the angels to assemble. Thousands upon thousands of angels (created from light) and Jinns (created from fire) gathered in groups. They bowed respectfully in the presence of Almighty Allah. The Creator of the universe declared that he intended to create the man and sought their counsel. The angels and Iblis (Satan) disapproved the idea and pointed out that human beings would cause disorder on the earth. They would make mischief and shed blood indiscriminately. The Holy Qur’an gives a description of this event in the following Verses: “And when your Lord said to the angels: I am about to appoint a vicegerent in the earth. They said: Will you place therein such as will cause disorder in it or shed blood ? We celebrate your praise and extol your holy names. He answered: I know what you know not.” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:30)
Whether or not these traditions are correct, the angels did understand that Allah would create a vicegerent on earth. Allah the Almighty announced that HE was going to create a human being out of clay, that HE would mold him and blow His spirit into him and then the angels should prostrate before him.
Ibn Masud and other companions of the Prophet (saw) said that Allah the Almighty sent Gabriel onto the earth to said that Allah the Almighty sent Gabriel onto the earth to get Him clay therefrom. The earth said: “I seek refuge in Allah from your decreasing my quantity or disfiguring me.” So Gabriel returned and did not take anything. He said: “My Lord, the land sought refuge in You and it granted.”
So Allah sent Michael for the same purpose, and the land sought refuge with Allah and it was granted. So he went back and said to Allah what Gabriel has said before him.
Then Allah sent the Angel of Death, and the land sought refuge in Allah, the angel said: “I also seek refuge with Allah from returning without carrying out His command.” So he took clay from the face of the earth and mixed it. He did not take from one particular place, but rather he took white, red, and black clay from different places.
The Angel of Death ascended with it, Allah soaked the clay till it became sticky. Then Allah said to the angels: “Truly, I am going to create man from clay. So when I have fashioned him and breathed into him (his) soul created by Me, then you fall down prostrate to him.” (Surah Sad 38:71-72).
For a period of time this shape remained as clay. Then Allah turned this clay into something dry and hard, like pottery. In Surah al-Hijr, 15:26, Allah, tabaraka wa ta’ala, said: “And indeed, We created man from sounding clay of altered black smooth mud.” which means Allah created Adam (the human being) from a clay that was poured and then dried taking the shape of Adam. He remained a figure of clay for 40 years before Allah made him a human being by turning this clay to flesh, blood, and bones. The angels went past him. They were seized with fear by what they saw, and Iblis felt fear most. He used to pass by the figure of Adam, buffeting it, which would make a sound like pottery. Allah told us: “He created man (Adam) from sounding clay like the clay of pottery.” (Surah Ar-Rahman 55:14).
Before Allah put Adam’s soul into his body, the devil (Iblis) came and examined this creation. Upon inspection, Iblis found this creation had internal cavities, and thus he knew that this creation would need to take things inside its body. Iblis knew this creation would not have the ability to go for long periods of time doing different matters without being in need of some things, like food, drink, rest, and the like. Iblis knew this creation was not like the angels, because angels do not have internal body cavities and need neither food nor drink nor rest. Allah gave them the strength to perform all what Allah ordered them to perform–without the need for eating, drinking, or resting to do so. The angels can bear things which the humans cannot bear. All this, Iblis knew. So Iblis, who was created from a pure flame of fire (which does not produce any smoke); Iblis, a jinn, and the ancestor of all the jinn, who was a believer at this period of time and living in Paradise with the angels worshipping Allah–talked to that shape of Adam. He said to Adam, “Allah created you for a matter which I cannot perceive.”
When the time drew near to breathe the spirit into Adam, as Allah decreed, He commanded the angels: “When I breathe My spirit into him prostrate before him.” Allah breathed His spirit into Adam and when it reached his head Adam sneezed. The angels said: “Say all praise belongs to Allah.” Adam repeated: “All praise belongs to Allah.” Allah said to him: “Your Lord has granted you mercy.” When the spirit reached his eyes, Adam looked at the fruits of Paradise. When it reached his abdomen Adam felt an appetite for food. He jumped hurriedly before the spirit could reach his legs, so that he could eat from the fruits of Paradise. Allah, therefore, said: “Man is created of haste.” (Surah Al-Anbiya 21:37).
Abu Hurairah narrated that the Prophet Muhammad (saw) said: “Allah created Adam from dust after He mixed the clay and left him for some time until it became sticky mud, after which Allah shaped him. After that Allah left him till it became like potter’s clay. Iblis used to go past him saying ‘You have been created for a great purpose.’ After that Allah breathed His spirit into him. The first thing into which the spirit passed was his eye and then his nose. He sneezed. Allah said: “May your Lord have mercy upon you, O Adam! Go to those angels and see what they would say.’ So Adam went and greeted them. they replied saying: “Peace be upon you and the mercy and blessings of Allah.” Allah said: “O Adam! This is your greeting and that of your offspring.” (Sahih al Bukhari).
Thus, the first words Adam uttered were in praising and thanking Allah.
After the soul of Adam joined his body, Allah bestowed on Adam the knowledge of the names of everything and their properties. Allah gave Adam that knowledge without a teacher, i.e., without Adam having to learn from someone to acquire that knowledge. “And He taught Adam the names of all things; then presenting them to the angels, He said: Tell Me the names of these if you are right.” (Surah Al-Baqara 2:31)
The angels did not know their names and said: “Glory be to You. We have no knowledge except what You have taught us. Surely, You are Knowing, the Wise.” (Surah Al-Baqara 2:32) After that Allah questioned Adam in the presence of all angels about the names of different objects. He gave correct answers on the basis of this superiority. Allah asked all the angels to prostrate as a mark of respect (not out of worship) to this special new creation, Adam, who was created so miraculously. “0′ angels! Fall down making obeisance to Adam” (Surah Al-Hijr 15:29)
Iblis was living with the angels, so he, also, was ordered to prostrate to Adam. The angels complied to the command of Allah without hesitation and prostrated themselves to Adam all of them together because all the angels are obedient; they do not disobey Allah. Except Iblis, he was arrogant and refused to be among the prostrators. “And when We said to the angels: Make obeisance to Adam, they did obeisance, not so Iblis, he refused and was haughty and he was of the: rejecters.” (Surah Al-Baqarah 2:34)
Iblis objected to Allah. He said, “I was created from fire, and he was only created from soil, so why should I prostrate to him? I will not.” (Surah Al-Hijr 15:30-33). By his statement Iblis meant that Allah was not just in ordering him to prostrate to Adam. Thus, by objecting to Allah and His order, Iblis blasphemed. This was the first blasphemy Iblis committed.
THE CREATION OF HAWA (EVE)
Adam stayed in paradise for a period of time. In order to remove the lonesomeness of Adam, a female mate named Hawa (Eve) was created. She was tall, suitable for the height of Adam who was sixty cubits tall and seven cubits broad. Hawa (Eve) was created from one of Adam’s ribs. Ibn Abbas said that Allah created Hawa (Eve) from the shortest rib on Adam’s left side. Adam and Hawa (Eve) lived together in Paradise for a period of time. Adam and his wife Hawa were given a place in the Garden (of Bliss) to reside. The Holy Quran affirms: “And O’ Adam! Dwell you and your wife in the Garden (of Bliss) and eat therefrom wherever you will but approach not this tree lest you should be: among the wrong-doers.” (Surah Al-Araf 7:20)
Allah permitted them to eat from all the fruits of Paradise, except the fruits of one particular tree. Allah enabled them to go from one place to another in the apparent locations of Paradise to eat from the fruits and to benefit from these locations. Adam and his wife Eve continued enjoying each others company and carefully avoiding that specific prohibited tree. Iblis became very jealous when he saw the favors of the Almighty Allah on Adam and he began to devise ways and means to humiliate them. He kept on making evil suggestions to the couple in a sneaky way. He tried to persuade them to approach the prohibited tree. Adam and Hawa (Eve) were not given permission to eat from that tree but Iblis whispered to them to eat from it.
One day the Iblis sympathetically said to them: “Your Lord has only forbidden you this tree lest you should become angels or immortals, and he swore to them saying: Surely, I am a sincere counsellor unto you. So he beguiled them by deceit.” (Surah Al-Araf 7:22)
On hearing this both Prophet Adam (peace be upon him) and Eve became curious. They started wondering as to why God did not want them to approach the specific tree. This temptation gradually became stronger but Allah guided them aright and warned that not to be taken in by the evil suggestions of Iblis. The Holy Qur’an says: “Then We said: O’ Adam! Verily, this Iblis is an enemy to you and your wife, so let him not get you both out of the Garden so that you are landed in misery.” (Surah Taha 20:117)
Adam and his wife used to live happily in the Garden of Bliss. They were endowed with the knowledge to discriminate between good and evil. They were also warned of the power of evil. Adam and Eve overpowered all sorts of evil temptations at first and tried hard to ward off the influence of Satan. But he made numerous attempts to misguide them off and on. Finally Satan succeeded in his mission and made them approach that specific tree. Hawa (Eve) started encouraging Adam to eat from that tree. Eventually they both ate from it. Instantly evil consequences appeared. “When they both tasted of the tree, their private parts became manifest to each other and they both began to cover themselves with the leaves of the trees (in the garden), and their Lord called them saying: Did I not forbid you both from that tree and tell you that Satan was your avowed enemy. They said: Our Lord! We have wronged ourselves. If you forgive us not and bestow not upon us Your mercy, we shall surely be of the losers.” (Surah Al-Araf 7:23)
REPENTENCE OF ADAM AND EVE AND THEIR EXPULSION FROM PARADISE
Adam and Eve followed the temptations of Iblis and were deprived of the heavenly bliss. They were overflowed with grief because disobeying Allah was sinful, however it was a small sin and they both quickly repented. What they said is mentioned in Surat al-Araf 7. 23: They said: Our Lord! We have wronged ourselves. If you forgive us not and bestow not upon us Your mercy, we shall surely be of the losers.” They repented and Allah, the Most Merciful accepted their repentance and chose them for His mercy.
After this incident, Allah dispelled them from the Garden of Bliss. Adam, Hawa (Eve), and Iblis were ordered to leave Paradise. Adam descended from Paradise into India, in a land called Sarandib (Sri Lanka, now-a-days). Hawan (Eve) descended in a location different from Adam. Iblis, descended into an area in present-day Iraq, now a town named al-Ubullah (next to al-Basrah. Later, Adam and Hawa (Eve) were reunited. Adam and Eve became ordinary people and had to live like us for only a certain span of life on this earth. They would be recreated again to be judged for their actions on the Day of Judgement and will be asked by the people to intercede for them:
Narrated Abu Huraira: We were in the company of the Prophet at a banquet and a cooked (mutton) forearm was set before him, and he used to like it. He ate a morsel of it and said, “I will be the chief of all the people on the Day of Resurrection. Do you know how Allah will gather all the first and the last (people) in one level place where an observer will be able to see (all) of them and they will be able to hear the announcer, and the sun will come near to them. Some People will say: Don’t you see, in what condition you are and the state to which you have reached? Why don’t you look for a person who can intercede for you with your Lord? Some people will say: Appeal to your father, Adam.’ They will go to him and say: ‘O Adam! You are the father of all mankind, and Allah created you with His Own Hands, and ordered the angels to prostrate for you, and made you live in Paradise. Will you not intercede for us with your Lord? Don’t you see in what (miserable)state we are, and to what condition we have reached?’ On that Adam will reply, ‘My Lord is so angry as He has never been before and will never be in the future; (besides), He forbade me (to eat from) the tree, but I disobeyed (Him), (I am worried about) myself! Myself! (Sahih Al Bukhari 004.055.556)
ADAM BECOMES A PROPHET
Adam and Eve lived for many years. After Adam descended from Paradise, where he had lived for 130 years, he received the revelation of prophethood from Allah. Adam, the first man, became the first prophet and the first Messenger to whom Allah revealed. Prophet Adam and his wife had many children. Hawa (Eve) gave birth to forty sets of twins. Each womb held a son and a daughter. Their children married and had children, who married and had children, and so on until the humans were spread in the different areas. Adam is the ancestor of all the human beings–without any exception. The lineage of all humans goes back to Adam and Hawa (Eve), even Gog and Magog (Ya’juj and Ma’juj). [See geneology chart at the end]
Two sons of Adam and Eve named Habil and Qabil fought and one killed the other. Narrated ‘Abdullah: The Prophet said, “No human being is killed unjustly, but a part of responsibility for the crime is laid on the first son of Adam who invented the tradition of killing (murdering) on the earth. (It is said that he was Qabil) (Sahih Al Bukhari 009.083.006)
Adam lived for many years. He didn’t die until he saw 40,000 of his descendents–and all of them were Muslim. Because Allah sent direction and guidance to Adam so Adam taught his children and their children about the religion of Allah….Islam. Prophet Adam and Hawa (Eve) loved and worshipped Allah. They used to pray, fast, and go to Hajj (pilgrimage). Prophet Adam taught his offspring about the attributes which befit Allah and the difference between the Creator and the creations. He taught good behavior, truthfulness, trustworthiness, and sincerity. He advised his followers to do good and avoid evil. He told the people to act upon the Commandments of Allah and follow his guidance. It would serve the purpose of shield to do away with the attacks of the devil. Allah says, “Whoso shall follow My Guidance, on them shall come no fear, nor shall they grieve. But those who will disbelieve and treat Our Signs as lies, they shall be the inmates of the fire and they shall abide therein.” (Surah Al-Baqara 2:39-40)
Allah bestowed many knowledges on Prophet Adam. Allah created in Adam the knowledge of the languages–without having to study them. He spoke eloquently and without having to use signs. Allah created in Adam the knowledge of the matters of earning a living–including how to plant wheat, how to make clothes, and how to make money from gold and silver. Allah created in Adam the knowledge of how to make instruments for planting, like the shovel and sickle, and the knowledge of how to plant seeds, vegetables, and fruits as well as how to harvest. Prophet Adam knew how to build and construct homes and houses and he used to make ceilings and doors for them.
ADAM IS IN PARADISE Narrated Abu Dhar: Allah’s Apostle said, “While I was at Mecca the roof of my house was opened and Gabriel descended, opened my chest, and washed it with Zam-zam water. Then he brought a golden tray full of wisdom and faith and having poured its contents into my chest, he closed it. Then he took my hand and ascended with me to the nearest heaven, when I reached the nearest heaven, Gabriel said to the gatekeeper of the heaven, ‘Open (the gate).’ The gatekeeper asked, ‘Who is it?’ Gabriel answered: ‘Gabriel.’ He asked, ‘Is there anyone with you?’ Gabriel replied, ‘Yes, Muhammad I is with me.’ He asked, ‘Has he been called?’ Gabriel said, ‘Yes.’ So the gate was opened and we went over the nearest heaven and there we saw a man sitting with some people on his right and some on his left. When he looked towards his right, he laughed and when he looked toward his left he wept. Then he said, ‘Welcome! O pious Prophet and pious son.’ I asked Gabriel, ‘Who is he?’ He replied, ‘He is Adam and the people on his right and left are the souls of his offspring. Those on his right are the people of Paradise and those on his left are the people of Hell and when he looks towards his right he laughs and when he looks towards his left he weeps.’ (Sahih Al-Bukhari 001.008.345)
ADAM WAS THE FIRST TO BUILD THE KABAH
Prophet Adam was the first to build the Kabah. During his time, the Aqsa Mosque was built in Palestine. The Masjid al Aqsa is the second house of prayer established on earth: Abu Dhar (ra) is quoted as saying, I asked the beloved Prophet Muhammad (saw) which was the first mosque on earth? ‘The Sacred Mosque (in Makkah),’ he said. And then which, I asked? ‘Masjid al Aqsa,’ he said. I further asked, what was the time span between the two? ‘Forty years,’ the Prophet replied. (Muslim) Many think that Prophet Ibrahim was the first to build the Kabah but in actuality he and his son Prophet Ismail RECONSTRUCTED the kabah. This hadith provides proof that the kabah was already in existence when Ibrahim was given the commands by Allah to migrate from Palestine to Mecca with his wife Sarah:
(Sahih Al-Bukhari Hadith 4.583 Narrated by Ibn Abbas) The first lady to use a girdle was the mother of Ishmael. She used a girdle so that she might hide her tracks from Sarah. Abraham brought her and her son Ishmael while she was suckling him, to a place near the Ka’ba under a tree on the spot of Zam Zam, at the highest place in the mosque. During those days there was nobody in Mecca, nor was there any water. So he made them sit over there and placed near them a leather bag containing some dates, and a small water-skin containing some water, and set out homeward. Ishmael’s mother followed him saying, “O Abraham! Where are you going, leaving us in this valley where there is no person whose company we may enjoy, nor is there anything (to enjoy)?” She repeated that to him many times, but he did not look back at her. Then she asked him, “Has Allah ordered you to do so?” He said, “Yes.” She said, “Then He will not neglect us,” and returned while Abraham proceeded onwards, and on reaching the Thaniya where they could not see him, he faced the Ka’ba, and raising both hands, invoked Allah saying the following prayers: “O our Lord! I have made some of my offspring dwell in a valley without cultivation, by Your Sacred House (Kaba at Mecca) in order, O our Lord, that they may offer prayer perfectly. So fill some hearts among men with love towards them, and (O Allah) provide them with fruits, so that they may give thanks.” (Surah Ibrahim 14:37)
By presenting the story of Adam (as) we have thus disproved that:
1) Prophet Muhammad (saw) was NOT the first one created although he will be the first one to be resurrected according to this hadith, Sahih Al Bukhari Volume 4, Book 55, Number 626. Narrated Abu Huraira: “Don’t give superiority to any prophet amongst Allah’s Prophets, for when the trumpet will be blown, everyone on the earth and in the heavens will become unconscious except those whom Allah will exempt. The trumpet will be blown for the second time and I will be the first to be resurrected to see Moses holding Allah’s Throne. I will not know whether the unconsciousness which Moses received on the Day of Tur has been sufficient for him, or has he got up before me.
2) The theory of evolution, science erroneous claim that man is descended from the apes. Beware of those who claim matters contrary to the truth of Islam. Adam was not the first creation, and all human beings originate from him. Prophet Muhammad descended from Prophet Adam. Prophet Muhammad was not the first creation, as some people claim. Also, beware of those who claim the first creation is the light of our Prophet. This is also invalid. There is no sahih hadith from the Prophet claiming such. There is, however, a fabricated hadith that the Prophet addressed Jabir by saying: “The first creation is the light of your Prophet, O Jabir.” The hafidh, Ahmad al-Ghumariyy, mentioned this hadith was fabricated in his book entitled, Al-Mughir Ala-l-Jami is-Saghir and the hafidh, as-Suyutiyy, said this hadith is not confirmed. He mentioned it in two (2) of his books: Al-Fatawaand The Explanation of at-Tirmidhiyy. What was confirmed from the Prophet was that the first creation was the original water, which exists now underneath the Arsh (throne).
Beware of theories which say human beings descended from apes or that Adam was a primitive caveman. Adam was the first man and the first human to receive the Revelation of prophethood. He was the first messenger of Allah and he is the ancestor of every member of the humankind. He taught the first people how to live and how to worship Allah correctly. He was an honored and blessed creation of Allah. He was created from soil. In Surat al-Hajj Ayah 6, Allah said: which means: [O you people, if you doubt about the matter of the Resurrection, then think about the matter that Adam was created from soil.] That is, should one have difficulty conceptualizing that a person can be resurrected–considering this matter is unlikely, a weak possibility, or one that does not occur–then remember that Allah created Adam from soil. Know that the One Who created Adam from soil has the Power to resurrect you after you turn back into soil.
GENEOLOGY CHART FROM ADAM TO IBRAHIM
Allah the Almighty revealed: “Remember when your Lord brought forth from the children of Adam, from their loins, their seed (or from Adam’s loin his offspring) and made them testify as to themselves saying: “Am I not your Lord?” They said: “Yes! We testify.” lest you should say on the Day of Resurrection. “Verily we have been unaware of this.” Or lest you should say: “It was only our father aforetime who took others pas partners in worship along with Allah and we were merely their descendants after them; will you then destroy us because of the deeds of men who practiced al batil (polytheism) and committing crimes and sins, invoking and worshipping others besides Allah?” Thus do We explain the Ayah (proofs, evidences, verses, lessons, signs, revelations etc) in detail so that they may turn unto the truth. (Surah Al-Araf 7:172-174).
The Descendents of Adam by Mohammad Fazli Sameer
1 Prophet ADAM Alaihi Salam (Prophet #1, lived for 910 years) + Hawwa (Eve) …2 Habil* (Abel) bin Adam (Alaihi Salam) …2 Qabil* (Cain) bin Adam (Alaihi Salam) ……3 Akhnukh (Enoch) bin Qabil ………4 Irad bin Akhnukh …………5 Methujael bin Irad ……………6 Lamech bin Methujael ………………7 Zillah bin Lamech …………………8 Tubal-Cain bin Zillah …………………8 Naamah bin Zillah ………………7 Adah bin Lamech …………………8 Jabel bin Adah …………………8 Jubal bin Adah …2 daughter (name unknown) **twin sister of Habil (Abel) …2 daughter (name unknown) **twin sister of Qabil (Cain) …2 Shiith (seth) bin Adam (Alaihi Salam) ……3 Anush bin Shiith ………4 Qinan bin Anush …………5 Mahlabil bin Qainan ……………6 Yard bin Mahlabil ………………7 AKHNUKH (Enoch or Idris, Alaihi Salam) bin Yard (Prophet #2) …………………8 Mutwashlak bin Akhnukh (Alaihi Salam) ……………………9 Lamik bin Mutwashlak 10 NOOH (Noah, Alaihi Salam) bin Lamik (Prophet #3) 146 years after the death of Adam, Alaihi Salam, 1,056 years after the creation of Adam, Alaihi Salam 11 Ham bin Nooh (Alaihi Salam) …12 Cush bin Ham ……13 Raamah bin Cush ………14 Sheba bint Raamah ………14 Dedan bin Raamah ……13 Sabterah bin Cush ……13 Nimrod bin Cush ……13 Sheba bint Cush ……13 Navilah bin Cush ……13 Sabiah bin Cush …12 Mizraim bin Ham ……13 Ludim bin Mizraim ……13 Anamim bin Mizraim ……13 Lebahu bin Mizraim ……13 Napatuhim bin Mizraim ……13 Pathrusim bin Mizraim ……13 Casluhim bin Mizraim ………14 Philistim bin Casluhim ……13 Caphthorim bin Mizraim …12 Phut bin Ham …12 Canaan bin Ham ……13 Sidon bin Canaan ……13 Heth bin Canaan ……13 Jebusite bin Canaan ……13 Amorite bin Canaan ……13 Girgasite bin Canaan 11 Yam bin Nooh (Alaihi Salam) 11 Japheth bin Nooh (Alaihi Salam) …12 Javan bin Japheth ……13 Elishah bin Javan ……13 Tarshish bin Javan ……13 Kittim bin Javan ……13 Dodanim bin Javan …12 Tubal bin Japheth …12 Mescheh bin Japheth …12 Tiras bin Japheth …12 Gomer bin Japheth ……13 Asheewaz bin Gomer ……13 Ridhath bin Gomer ……13 Togarham bin Gomer ……13 Bark bin Gomer …12 Magog bin Japheth …12 Madai bin Japheth …12 Bulgas bin Japheth …12 ‘Algan bin Japheth ……13 Yunan bin ‘Algan ………14 Rumi bin Yunan 11 Sham bin Nooh (Alaihi Salam) …12 Eram bin Sham …12 ‘Iram bin Sham ……13 ‘Ars bin ‘Iram ………14 ‘Aad bin ‘Ars …………15 Jaloud bin ‘Aad ……………16 Raya’ bin Jaloud ………………17 ‘Abdullah bin Raya …………….18 HUD bin ‘Abdullah (Prophet #4) ……13 Jasser bin ‘Iram ………14 Thamud bin ‘Ars …………15 Hader bin Thamud ……………16 ‘Ubaid bin Hader ………………17 Masih bin ‘Ubaid …………….18 Auf bin Masih ……………….19 Abir bin Auf ……………20 SALIH bin Abir (Prophet #5) …12 Arfakshad bin Sham ……13 Shalikh bin Arfakshad ………14 Hud bin Shalikh (lived in Al-Ahqaf between Yemen and Oman in a land called Ashar, stretching out into the sea in the valley of Mughith) ………14 Abir bin Shalikh …………15 Joktan bin Abir ……………16 Abimael bin Joktan ……………16 Sheba bint Joktan ……………16 Ophir bin Joktan ……………16 Havilah bin Joktan ……………16 Jobab bin Joktan ……………16 Hadoran bin Joktan ……………16 Uzal bin Joktan ……………16 Dirlah bin Joktan ……………16 Obal (Ebal) bin Joktan ……………16 Al-Modad bin Joktan ……………16 Sheleph bin Joktan ……………16 Hajaramaveta bin Joktan ……………16 Jerah bin Joktan …………15 Falikh bin Abir ……………16 Multan bin Falikh ………………17 KHILR bin Multan (the one who was more knowledgeable than Musa (Moses)) ……………16 Ra’u bin Falikh ………………17 Saru’ bin Ra’u …………….18 Nahur bin Saru’ ……………….19 Tarih (Azar) bin Nahur ……………….19 Hazo bin Nahur ……………20 Hazo bin Haroun ……………20 Pildash bin Haroun ……………20 Jidlaph bin Haroun ……………20 Bethuel bin Haroun ……………20 Huz bin Haroun ……………20 Buz bin Haroun ……………20 Kemuel bin Haroun ………………21 Aram bin Kemuel ……………20 Chesel bin Haroun ……………….19 *2nd Spouse of Haroun bin Nahur ……………20 Millah bin Haroun ……………20 Islah bin Haroun ……………….19 *3rd Spouse of Haroun bin Nahur ……………20 LUT (Lot, Alaihi Salam)(Prophet #7) bin Haroun ……………20 Hazo bin Haroun ………………21 Daughter #1 ………………21 Daughter #2 ……………20 *2nd Spouse of Lut (Alaihi Salam) bin Haroun ………………21 Moab bin Lut ………………..22 MOABITES ……………20 *3rd Spouse of Lut (Alaihi Salam) bin Haroun ………………21 Bin Ammi bin Lut ………………..22 AMMONITES ……………20 Nahor bin Tarih + Reumah (Concubine) ………………21 Thebah bin Nahor ………………21 Gaham bin Nahor ………………21 Thamash bin Nahor ………………21 Maalah bin Nahor ………………21 Bethuel bin Nahor ………………..22 Laban bin Bethuel ………………….23 Leah bint Laban + Ya’coub (Jacob) bin Ishak (Isaac) ………………….23 Rachel bint Laban + Ya’coub (Jacob) bin Ishak (Isaac) ………………..22 Rebekah bint Bethuel + Ishak (Isaac) bin Ibrahim ……………20 IBRAHIM (Abraham, Alaihi Salam) bin Tarih (Azar) (Prophet #6) lived for 175 years + Sarah
COMPARSION OF ADAM AND IBRAHIM
As you can see the geneology chart above begins with Adam, the father of humanity and stops at Prophet Ibrahim, the father of all prophets. Muhammad (saw) is descended from him and is the seal of all prophets. Ibrahim (as) himself, known as the father of monotheism, was in fact the renewer of a monotheism that went back to Adam (as). In the Qur’an when God addresses Adam and his progeny with the famous verse, ‘Alastu bi Rabbikum?’ (Am I not your Lord?) all of humanity answered “yes,” a very difficult “yes”- as a result of which we accepted the great responsibility and burden of being human. Therefore, the Adamic state implies the acceptance of the Lordship and (as)nity of God. Ibrahim (as) did not begin monotheism. Monotheism begins with Abu’l Bashar, the father of humanity, the very first human being. Originally, of course, Adam (as) was not even just male, he was male and female together. Adam and Eve(as) together, one being. The Hebrew word Adam, originally contains that meaning.
PROPHET IBRAHIM (AS) THE KHALIL OF ALLAH (SWT)
Narrated Amr bin Maimuin: When Mu’adh arrived at Yemen, he led them (i.e. the people of Yemen) in the Fajr prayer wherein he recited: ‘Allah took Abraham as a Khalil.’ A man amongst the people said, “(How) glad the mother of Abraham is!” (In another narration) ‘Amr said, “The Prophet sent Mu’adh to Yemen and he (led the people) in the Fajr prayer and recited: ‘Allah took Abraham as a Khalil. A man behind him said, “(How) glad the mother of Abraham is!” (Sahih Al Bukhari 005.059.635)
Some of the People of the Book stated that his name was Abraham Ibn Tarikh, Ibn Nahur, Ibn Sarough, Ibn Raghu, Ibn Phaligh, Ibn Aher, Ibn Shalih, Ibn Arfghshand, Ibn Sam, Ibn Noah. They said that when Tarikh was seventy five years old, he had Abraham, Nahor (Nohour) and Haran. Haran had a son named Lut. Prophet Lut was a contemporary of Prophet Ibrahim. Ibrahim and his wife Sarah were visited by two angels who came to give glad tidings of two future sons and the news that Lut’s people would be punished. (Surah Hud 11:69-83)
But Muslims know him as Ibrahim. We send mercy and blessings on the Prophet Ibrahim (as) during each the five obligatory prayers. Narrated Abu Humaid As-Sa’idi: The people asked, “O Allah’s Apostle! How shall we (ask Allah to) sendblessings on you?” Allah’s Apostle replied, “Say: O Allah! Send Your Mercy on Muhammad and on his wives and on his off spring, as You sent Your Mercy on Abraham’s family; and send Your Blessings on Muhammad and on his offspring, as You sent Your Blessings on Abraham’s family, for You are the Most Praise-worthy, the Most Glorious.” (Sahih Al Bukhari 004.055.588)
The People of the Book also said that Ibrahim was the middle child and that Haran died in the lifetime of his father in the land where he was born, the land of the Chaldeans (Al Kaldanieen), also known as Babylonia. His native Mesopotamia is the present day southern ‘Iraq. At that time some people worshipped idols of stone and wood; others worshipped the planets, stars, sun and moon; still others worshipped their kings and rulers.
Ibrahim was tall in stature, and Prophet Muhammad (saw) resembled him more than Ismail, Ishaq and Yacub! (Sahih Al Bukhari 004.055.573, 004.055.574, 004.055.607) He was an ideal model for mankind and Allah (swt) gave the honor of His choice to him. Speaking highly of him the Holy Qur’an says: “Ibrahim was indeed a paragon of virtue, obedient to Allah, ever inclined to Him and he was not of those who set up equals to Allah. He was ever grateful for His favours, We chose him and guided him to a straight path; and We bestowed on him good in this world and in the Hereafter, he will surely be among the righteous.” (Surah An-Nahl 16: 121-123)
Nevertheless Ibrahim was born into the polytheistic atmosphere of ancient Mesopotamia, into a typical family of that time. In those times, ignorance prevailed upon the minds of the people. Most of the people had no knowledge of Allah and His teachings. They worshipped the sun, the moon and the stars. They were astronomers and maintained the records of the movements of the planets. They prayed to the idols made of wood and stone and made many offerings for them. The priests enjoyed a prominent place in the society. They commanded respect among their followers. They were paid well. The poor people were ruled by chiefs and were subjected to their cruelty and injustice.
The head of the family was not even an ordinary idolater, but was one who totally rejected Allah and who used to make the idols with his own hands. Some traditions claimed that Abraham’s father died before his birth and he was raised by an uncle whom Abraham called father. Other traditions said that his father was alive and was named Azer. Ibrahim was the son of Terah whose surname Adhar was popularly known. He was a doll carver and a staunch worshipper of idols. He did all he could to compel Ibrahim to worship the handicrafts of man but Ibrahim flatly refused to do so. He hated even an idea of worshipping the idols which could neither see, nor hear, nor speak. Ibrahim was destined to stand against his own family, against the entire system of his community. In brief, he stood against all kinds of polytheism.
During his early childhood Ibrahim realized that his father made strange statues. One day, he asked him about what it was he made. His father replied that he made statues of gods. Ibrahim was astonished and he spontaneously rejected the idea. Being a child he played with such statues sitting on their backs as people sit on the backs of donkeys and mules.
One day his father saw him riding the statue of Mardukh and he became furious. He ordered his son not to play with it again. Ibrahim asked: “What is this statue, father? It has big ears, bigger than ours.” His father answered: “It is Mardukh, the god of gods, son! These big ears show his deep knowledge.”
Years passed and Ibrahim grew. Since his childhood his heart had been full of hatred for these idols. He could not understand how a sane person could make a statue and then worship what he had made. He noticed that these idols did not eat, drink or talk and they could not even turn themselves right side up if someone turned them upside down. How, then could people believe that such statues could harm or benefit them?
Ibrahim’s people had a big temple full of idols, in the middle of which was a niche accommodating the biggest gods which was of different kinds, qualities and shapes. Ibrahim, who used to go to the temple with his father when he was a child, greatly despised all that wood and stone. What surprised him was the way his people behaved when they entered the temple; they bowed and started to cry, begging and imploring their gods for help as if the idols could hear or understand these requests!
At first, such a sight seemed funny to Ibrahim, but later he began to feel angry. Was it not astonishing that all those people could be deceived? What added to the problem was that his father wanted him to be a priest when he was grown. He wanted nothing more from his son that that he revere those statues, yet Ibrahim never stopped displaying his hatred and disdain of them.
THE PROPHECY OF IBRAHIM
Ibrahim was endowed with spiritual understanding from an early age. Allah enlightened his heart and mind gave him wisdom from childhood. Allah the Almighty stated: Indeed We bestowed aforetime on Abraham his (portion of) guidance, and We were Well Acquainted with him( as to his Belief in the Oneness of Allah etc). (Surah Al-Anbiya 21:51)
Prophet Ibrahim received the message of Allah through a special angel Jibreel (Gabriel). Gradually he was commanded to start preaching. As he was a strong man in his will and determination, he worked very hard. He began his mission in the teeth of opposition. He argued with his people with great vigour regarding the folly of worshipping the idols. The Holy Qur’an says: “When he said to his father and his people: What are these images to which you are so devoted ? They replied: We found our fathers worshipping them. He said: Then you as well as your fathers have indeed, been in manifest error. They said: Is it really the truth that you have brought for us or are you jesting ? He replied: Nay, your Lord is the Lord of the heavens and the earth; He brought them into existence and I am of those who bear witness to this, and by Allah, I will certainly plan against your idols after you have gone away and turned your backs.” (Surah Al-Anbiya 21:53-58)
One night Ibrahim left his house to go to a mountain. He walked alone in the dark until he chose a cave in the mountain where he sat resting his back against its wall. He looked at the sky. He had hardly seen it when he remembered that he was looking at planets and stars which were worshipped by some people on earth. His young heart was filled with tremendous pain. He considered what was beyond the moon, the stars and the planets (i.e. Allah) and was astonished that these celestial bodies were worshipped by men when they had been created to worship and obey their Creator, appearing and disappearing at His command.
Ibrahim addressed his people who worshipped celestial bodies as Almighty Allah revealed: Thus did We show Abraham the kingdom of the heavens and the earth that he be one of those who have Faith and certainty. When the night covered him over with darkness he saw a star. He said: “This is my lord.” But when it set, he said: “I like not that those who set.” When he saw the moon rising up he said: “This is my lord.” but when it set he said: “Unless my Lord guides me, I shall surely be among the erring people.” When he saw the sun rising up he said: “This is my lord, This is greater.” But when it set, he said: “O my people! I am indeed free from all that you join as partners in worship with Allah. Verily, I have turned my face towards Him Who has created the heavens and the earth Hanifan (Islamic Monotheism, i.e. worshipping none but Allah Alone) and I am not of the Al Mushrikeen (those who worship others besides Allah).” His people disputed with him. He said: “Do you dispute with me concerning Allah while HE has guided me and I fear not those whom you associate with Allah in worship. (Nothing can happen to me) except when my Lord (Allah) wills something. My Lord comprehends in His Knowledge all things. Will you not then remember? “And how should I fear those whom you associate in worship with Allah (though they can neither benefit nor harm), while you fear not that you have joined in worship with Allah things for which HE has not sent down to you any authority. So which of the two parties has more right to be in security? If you but know.” It is those who believe (in the Oneness of Allah and worship none but Him Alone) and confuse not their belief with Zulm (wrong, i.e. by worshipping others besides Allah), for them only there is security and they are the guided. And that was Our proof which We gave Abraham against his people. We raise whom We will in degrees. Certainly your Lord is All Wise, All Knowing. (Sural Al-Anam 6:75-83)
In that debate, Ibrahim clarified to his people that these celestial bodies do not serve as deities and cannot be worshipped as partners with Allah the Almighty. Indeed these bodies are created things, fashioned, controlled, managed and made to serve. They appear sometimes and disappear at others, going out of sight from our world. However, Allah the Almighty does not lose sight of anything, and nothing can be hidden from Him. He is without end, everlasting without disappearance. There is no other deity but Allah.
Ibrahim made clear to them, first that the celestial bodies are unworthy of worship and second that they are among the signs of Allah. Almighty Allah commanded: And from among His Signs are the night and the day, and the sun and the moon. Prostrate not to the sun nor to the moon, but prostrate to Allah Who created them if you really worship Him. (Surah Fussilat 41:37)
Ibrahim’s reasoning helped to reveal the truth, and then the conflict between him and his people began for the worshippers of the stars and planets did not stand mute. They began arguing and threatening Ibrahim.
Ibrahim replied: “Do you dispute with me concerning Allah while HE has guided me, and I fear not those whom you associate with Allah in worship. (Nothing can happen to me except when my Lord (Allah) wills something. My Lord comprehends in His Knowledge all things. Will you not then remember? How should I fear those whom you associate in worship with Allah (though they can neither benefit or harm), while you fear not that you have joined in worship with Allah things for which He has not sent down to you any authority. SO which of the two parties has more rights to be in security? …..if you but know! It is those who believe (in the oneness of Allah and worship none but Him Alone) and confuse not their belief with Zulm (wrong by worshipping others besides Allah), for them only there is security and they are the guided.” (Surah Al-Anam 6:80-82)
The people paid no heed to his teachings. They insisted on their ways. They did not refrain from worshipping the twinkling stars, shining moon and ugly idols. The priests kept on encouraging the people to disbelieve in the Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him). They were afraid lest they should be deprived of their priesthood if the people abandoned idol-worship. As a matter of fact the king Nemrùd in that area thought himself to be god. He had a big castle and many soldiers at his disposal. He desired to argue with the Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) one day. They met to hold discussions: The king looked at the Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) mockingly for a while. Then he said: What is this thing you are calling the people for? Why do you persuade the People to worship God Who is invisible? The Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) replied boldly: My God is the One: Who gives and takes away life. Nemrud answered arrogantly: I have also the power to do that. I can kill the persons and can spare them also. The Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) asked a clever question that caught every one by surprise. He said: My God causes the sun to rise from the East and set it in the West. Can you make it come from the east? On hearing the king remained silent because he knew that no man had the power to do so.
IBRAHIM TEACHES TAWHEED TO HIS PEOPLE
The curtains are drawn on the first category of the people, those who were worshipping celestial bodies. The next situation reveals the second group, those who were practicing idolatry. Allah gave Ibrahim the reasoning he needed the first time and every time he argued with his people. Almighty Allah declared: And that was Our Proof which We gave Abraham against his people. We raised whom We will in degrees. Certainly your Lord is All Wise, All Knowing. (Sural Al-Anam 6:83)
Ibrahim did his best to make his people heedful to the belief in the oneness of Almighty Allah and to the worship of Him alone. He bade them to firmly renounce the worship of idols. HE said to his father and his people: “What are these images, to which you are devoted?” they said: “We found our fathers worshipping them.” He said: “Indeed you and your fathers have been in manifest error.” They said: “Have you brought us the truth, or are you one of those who play about?” He said: “Nay, your Lord is the Lord of the heavens and the earth, Who created them and of that I am of the witnesses.” (Surah Al-Anbiya 21:52-56)
All was finished between Ibrahim and his people and the struggle began. the most amazed and furious was his father (or his uncle who had raised him), for as it is well known, he not only worshipped idols but sculpted and sold them as well. Ibrahim felt that it was his duty as a good son to advise his father against this evil so that he could be saved from Allah’s punishment.
Being a wise son he did not make his father feel foolish, nor did he openly laugh at his conduct. He told him that he loved him, thereby hoping to generate fatherly love. Then he gently asked him why he worshipped lifeless idols who could not hear, see or protect him. before his father could become angry he hastily added: “O my father! Verily! There has come to me of knowledge that which came not unto you. So follow me. I will guide you to a Straight Path. O my father! Worship not Satan. Verily! Stan has been a rebel against the Most Beneficent (Allah). O my father! Verily! I fear lest a torment from the Most Beneficent (Allah) overtake you as that you become a companion of Satan (in the Hellfire).” He (the father) said: “Do you reject my gods, O Abraham? If you stop not this, I will indeed stone you. So get away from me safely before I punish you.” Abraham said: “Peace be on you! I will ask Forgiveness of my Lord for you. Verily! He is unto me, Ever Most Gracious. And I shall turn away from you and from those whom you invoke besides Allah.” (Surah Maryam 19:43-48)
His father’s harsh treatment did not stop Ibrahim from delivering the message of truth. Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, “On the Day of Resurrection Abraham will meet his father Azar whose face will be dark and covered with dust.(The Prophet Abraham will say to him): ‘Didn’t I tell you not to disobey me?’ His father will reply: ‘Today I will not disobey you.’ ‘Abraham will say: ‘O Lord! You promised me not to disgrace me on the Day of Resurrection; and what will be more disgraceful to me than cursing and dishonoring my father?’ Then Allah will say (to him):’ ‘I have forbidden Paradise for the disbelievers.” Then he will be addressed, ‘O Abraham! Look! What is underneath your feet?’ He will look and there he will see a Dhabh (an animal,) blood-stained, which will be caught by the legs and thrown in the (Hell) Fire.” (Sahih Al Bukhari. 004.055.569)
Narrated Abu Huraira: The Prophet said, “On the Day of Resurrection Abraham will see his father covered with Qatara and Ghabara. (i.e. having a dark face).” (Sahih Al Bukhari 006.060.291)
Angry and sad to see people prostate before idols, he was determined to stamp out these practices and went to the town to debate with the people knowing full well that he might suffer harm. Like a wise doctor searching for the cause of a sickness so as to prescribe the proper cure, or like a judge who questioned the accused sharply so that he mighty detect the truth. Ibrahim asked them: “Do the idols see you when you prostrate before them? Do they benefit you in any way.” They quickly tried to defend their beliefs. They argued that they knew the idols were lifeless but that their forefathers had worshipped them; to them this was proof enough for their belief.
Ibrahim explained that their forefathers had been wrong. This angered them and they retorted: “Are you condemning our gods and our forefathers? Or are you just joking?” Ibrahim showed no fear as he replied: “I am serious. I come to you with a true religion. I have been sent with guidance from our Lord Who alone is worthy of worship, Who is the Creator of the heavens and the earth, and Who regulates all affairs of life, unlike the dumb idols which are just stone and wood.”
To convince them that the idols could not harm him, he challenged: “I have already condemned them; of they had any power they would have harmed me by now!”
Almighty Allah recounted: Recite to them the story of Abraham. When he said to his father and his people. “What do you worship?” They said: “We worship idols, and to them we are ever devoted.” He said: “Do they hear you when you call on them? OR do they benefit you or do they harm you?” They said: “Nay but we found our father doing so.” He said: “Do you observe that which you been worshipping, You and your ancient fathers? Verily! They are enemies to me, save the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn and all that exists); Who has created me and it is HE Who guides me and it is HE Who feeds me and gives me to drink. And when I am ill, it is He who cures me; and Who will cause me to die and then will bring me to life again and Who I hope will forgive me my faults on the Day of Resurrection.” (Surah Ash-Shu’ara 26:69-82)
In another surah The Almighty revealed: And remember Abraham when he said to his people: “Worship Allah Alone and fear Him that is better for you if you did but know. You worship besides Allah only idols and you only invent falsehood. Verily, those whom you worship beside Allah have no power to give you provision, so seek your provision from Allah Alone, you will be brought back. And if you deny then nations before you have denied their Messengers. the duty of the Messenger is only to convey the Message plainly.” See they not how Allah originates creation, then will repent it. Verily, that is easy for Allah. Say: “Travel in the land and see how Allah originated creation and then Allah will bring forth (resurrect) the creation of the Hereafter (i.e. resurrection after death) verily, Allah is Able to do all things.”He punishes whom HE wills and shows mercy to whom He wills, and to Him you will be returned. And you cannot escape in the earth or in the heaven. And besides Allah you have neither any Wali (Protector, or guardian) nor any Helper. And those who disbelieve in the Ayat (proofs, lessons, signs, evidences, verses, revelations etc) of Allah and the Meeting with Him, it is they who have no hope of My Mercy, and it is they who will have a painful torment. (Surah Al-Hajj:16-23)
He explained to them the beauty of Allah’s creation, His power and wisdom. Idol worship is detested by Allah for Allah is the Lord of the universe Who created mankind, guided him and provided him with food and drink and cured him when he was sick and Who will cause him to die and be raised up again. It was He to Whom Ibrahim prayed and Who would forgive his sins on the Day of Judgment. However, they would not give up but clung fast to idolatry.
Ibrahim fought to preserve tawheed (oneness of Allah) and also the lives of young female infants. Narrated Asma bint Abi Bakr: I saw Zaid bin Amr bin Nufail standing with his back against the Ka’ba and saying, “O people of Quraish! By Allah, none amongst you is on the religion of Abraham except me.” He used to preserve the lives of little girls: If somebody wanted to killhis daughter he would say to him, “Do not kill her for I will feed heron your behalf.” So he would take her, and when she grew up nicely, hewould say to her father, “Now if you want her, I will give her to you,and if you wish, I will feed her on your behalf.” (Sahih Al Bukhari 005.058.169)
IBRAHIM BREAKS THE IDOLS IN THE TEMPLE
Ibrahim left his father’s house and abandoned his people and what they worshipped. He had a special plan in mind and decided to do something about their state of disbelief, but did not reveal it. He knew that there was going to be a great celebration on the other bank of the river which would be attended by all the people. Most of the evil-doers drank; liquor and became noisy and wild. They were losing their balance of mind in a state of intoxication. There was a great hustle. Almost every one from the town attended the ceremony except the Prophet Ibrahim. Ibrahim waited until the city was empty, then came out cautiously, directing his steps towards the temple. The streets leading to it were empty and the temple itself was deserted for the priests had also gone to the festival outside the city. He proceeded on towards the Temple escaping the sight of others. In his band he was carrying a sharp axe.
When he entered the Temple, he saw there many statues which stood motionless and helpless. He looked at the stone and wood statues of the gods and at the food laid in front of them as offerings. He approached one of the statues and asked: “The food in front of you is getting cold. Why don’t you eat?” the statue kept silent and rigid. Abraham asked all the other statues around him: “Will you not eat of the offering before you?” (Surah As-Saffat 37:91)
He was mocking them for he knew they would not eat. He once again asked then: “What is the matter with you that you do not speak?” (Surah As-Safaat 37:92)
He then raised his axe and started smashing the false gods worshipped by the people. The idols fell to the ground with a big thud. The floor was loaded with numerous noses, ears, heads, arms, legs and other parts of the idols. He broke all the idols in the sanctuary but spared the Chief one, on whose neck he hung the axe. He did so to demonstrate that the idols had no power to cause harm to any one or bestow benefits upon others. They were as helpless as mere stones and it is against the dignity of human beings to pay homage to them. After this his anger subsided and he felt at peace and left the temple cautiously to make sure no one had seen him. He had fulfilled his vow to show his people a practical proof of their foolishness in worshipping something other than Allah.
When the celebrations came to an end the priests went directly towards the Temple as usual and some people accompanied them. They were shocked to see their gods smashed to pieces, lying scattered all over the temple. and Abraham’s name came to their minds. The floor was littered with stones and the Chief idol was standing with an axe hanging down along its neck. The priests began to scream and became confused. The people rushed to the Temple on hearing a deafening hue and cry. Every one was in a furious mood. They wanted to know who had dared do this trouble to the idols because they wished to take revenge. Someone said that the Prophet Ibrahim (peace be upon him) would have done so because he consistently spoke ill of our gods and advised the people to worship One God. The Holy Qur’an relates: “Then he broke them into pieces except the Chief of them that haply they may return to him. They said: Who has done so to our gods? Most surely he is one of the evil-doers. We heard a youth called Ibrahim making mention of them.” (Surah Al-Anbiya 21:57)
Allah the Almighty said: they said: “Who has done this to our aliah (gods)? He must indeed be one of the wrongdoers.” They said: “We heard a young man talking against them who is called Abraham.” They said: “Then bring him before the eyes of the people, that they may testify.” they said: “Are you the one who has done this to our gods, O Abraham?” Abraham said: “nay, this one, the biggest of them (idols) did it, Ask them, if they can speak!” SO they turned to themselves and said: “Verily you are the Zalimun (polytheists, and wrongdoers).” Then they turned to themselves (their first thought and said): “Indeed you (Abraham) know well that these idols speak not?” Abraham said: “DO you then worship besides Allah, things that can neither profit you nor harm you? If upon you, and upon that which you worship besides Allah! Have you then no sense?” (Surah Al-Anbiya 21:59-67)
Furious, they demanded that Abraham be arrested and tried.
THE TRIAL OF IBRAHIM
Ibrahim was summoned to appear before the king. When he came, he was asked if he had destroyed all those idols. He directed the king to ask the chief idol on whose neck was hung the axe with which the havoc was done. Ibrahim told them that he must be the culprit! Narrated Abu Huraira: Abraham did not tell a lie except on three occasion. Twice for the Sake of Allah when he said, “I am sick,” and he said, “(I have not done this but) the big idol has done it……” (Sahih Al Bukhari 004.055.578)
The king as well as the priests did not like to prolong their discussions because the arguments of the Prophet Ibrahim were very sound and convincing. The Holy Qur’an relates: “Then they said to Ibrahim: Is it you who has done so to our gods? He replied: Well, some one has surely done this. Here is the chief of them, so ask them if they can speak. Then they turned towards one another and said: You yourselves are surely in the wrong. Then they were made to hung down their heads out of shame and said to Ibrahim: Certainly you know that they do not speak.” (Surah Al-Anbiyah 21: 65-68).
They then realized the senselessness of their beliefs; however, their arrogance would not allow them to admit their foolishness. All they could do was to use their power of authority as tyrants usually do to punish Ibrahim. They kept him in chains and planned their revenge. Anger was burning in their hearts.
They decided to throw Ibrahim into the biggest fire they could build. All the citizens were ordered to gather wood as a service to their gods. For several days they collected fuel. They dug a deep pit, filled it with firewood and it was ignited. According to hadith it was a salamander that blew on the fire, Narrated Um Sharik: Allah’s Apostle ordered that the salamander should be killed and said,”It (i.e. the salamander) blew (the fire) on Abraham.” (Sahih Al Bukhari 004.055.579)
Ibrahim was put on a catapult, his hands and feet were tied. The fire was ready with its flame reaching the sky. The people stood away from the pit because of the great heat. Then the chief priest gave his order to cast Ibrahim into the fire. Ibrahim said, “Narrated Ibn Abbas: ‘Allah is Sufficient for us and He Is the Best Disposer of affairs..” (Sahih Al Bukhari 006.060.086 and Surah Imran 3:173) His descent into the blaze was as descent on steps in a cool garden. The flames were still there, but they did not burn for Allah the Almighty had issued His command: “O fire! Be you coolness and safety for Abraham.” (Surah Al-Anbiya 21:69)
The fire submitted to the will of Allah, becoming cool and safe for Ibrahim. It only burned his bonds, and he sat in the midst of the fire as if he were sitting in a garden. He glorified and praised Allah the Almighty, with a heart that contained only his love for Allah. There was not any vacant space therein for fear, awe, or worry, it was filled with love only. Fear and awe were dead, and the fire was turned into coolness, making the air pleasant. Those who love Allah as Ibrahim did do not fear anything but Him.
Allah declared: Those (believers) unto whom the people (hypocrites) said: “Verily! the people (pagans) have gathered against you (a great army), therefore, fear them.” but it only increased them in Faith, and they said: Allah Alone is Sufficient for us, and He is the Best Disposer of affairs for us.” So they returned with Grace and Bounty from Allah. No harm touched them; and they followed the good Pleasure of Allah. Allah is the Owner of Great bounty. It is only Satan that suggests to you the fear of his Auliya (supporters and friends, polytheists, disbeliveers in the Oneness of Allah and in His Messenger Muhammad) so fear them not but fear Me if you are true believers.” (Surah Imran:173-175)
The throng, the chiefs, and the priests say watching the fire from a distance. It was burning their faces and nearly suffocating them. It kept burning for such a long time that the disbeliveers thought it would never be extinguished. When it did burn out, they were greatly amazed to find Ibrahim coming out of the pit untouched by the fire. Their faces were black from the smoke, but his was bright with the light and grace of Allah. The raging fire had become cool for Ibrahim and had only charred the ropes which held him. He walked out of the fire as if he were walking out of a garden. Cries of astonishment were heard from the heathens. They wanted to harm him, but We made them the worst losers. (Surah Al-Anbiya 21:70)
MIGRATION TO PALESTINE AND MECCA
In spite of this miracle the Prophet Ibrahim could not have a large number of people following his teachings. He went on preaching and underwent a chain of tests and trials to prove his obedience and sincerity. When his people tortured the Prophet Ibrahim, he was ordered to leave that area and go to the blessed land which is now called Palestine. In compliance with the Commandment of Almighty Allah the Prophet Ibrahim did not lose a moment’s rest without getting in touch with the people and teaching them about God and His message. Nothing seemed to discourage him.
As the Prophet Ibrahim had no off-spring from his first wife Sarah, he entered into matrimonial alliance with another woman called Hajira (Hagar). He prayed for a son in all sublimity and his prayer was granted. Some time later Hajira announced happy news that she was expecting a baby. As time passed she gave birth to Prophet Isma’il (Ishmael). Soon after God ordered the Prophet Ibrahim to take his wife Hajira and the Prophet Isma’il(peace be upon him) to the valley of Bathã (Mecca).
In accordance with the Divine Commandment he set out on a long and troublesome journey. They arrived at the spot after a long time. It was hilly area without any trees and water. They set up their tents and looked around but nothing was visible except sand. The Prophet Ismail had attained the age of a few months only when the event of migration took place. He began to cry because of thirst. His mother began to look for water but it was not available anywhere (See Sahih Al Bukhari 004.055.583.) She ran desperately in quest of water between two hillocks called Safa and Marwa but found no water. She came back to her thirsty infant and was surprised to see the spring of Zam Zam emerged from beneath the foot of the Prophet Isma’il (peace be upon him). She quenched the thirst of her baby with water. Narrated Ibn ‘Abbas: The Prophet said, “May Allah bestow His Mercy on the mother of Ishmael! Had she not hastened (to fill her water-skin with water from the Zam-zam well). Zam-zam would have been a stream flowing on the surface of the earth.” Ibn ‘Abbas further added, “(The Prophet) Abraham brought Ishmael and his mother (to Mecca) and she was suckling Ishmael and she had a water-skin with her.’ (Sahih Al Bukhari 004.055.582)
Many people from far and wide came to the spot where Prophet Ibrahim and his family had settled. Gradually this locality named Mecca became the birth place of Islam. Narrated ‘Abdullah bin Zaid: The Prophet said, “The Prophet Abraham made Mecca a sanctuary, and asked for Allah’s blessing in it. I made Medina a sanctuary as Abrahammade Mecca a sanctuary and I asked for Allah’s Blessing in its measures the Mudd and the Sa as Abraham did for Mecca. (Sahih Al Bukhari 003.034.339)
BACK TO PALESTINE
The Prophet Ibrahim went back to Palestine to join his first wife, the beloved Sarah. He received a Commandment in his vision to sacrifice his only son, Isma’il. The Prophet Ibrahim had no hesitation in complying with what he was ordered to do but his son was infant at that time. He had to wait until he grew older. Due to delay the temptation of not doing what he was supposed to do, was certainly there. But the Prophet Ibrahim had a solid faith in Allah and his life was all dedicated to His’ service. So he kept on waiting until Prophet Isma’il became a teenager. One day the father told his son about the dream. To his great surprise he saw that Prophet Isma’il had no objection and was willing to be sacrificed as Allah had willed it. He said: “O’ my father! Do what you have been commanded to do; then you will find me of the patients.” (Surah As-Saffat 37:10-11)
This was a hard decision for a young man to take and it was a moment of great faith in Allah.
On the tenth of Dhil Hijjah the father and his beloved son walked side by side. A young lad possessed forbearance and the old man was full of determination and spirit to complete submission to Allah. Their purpose was to carry out the orders of their Lord. Nothing was dearer to them than the service of Allah. They proceeded towards Mina with a sharp butcher’s knife that, the old shaky Ibrahim had in his hand. Finally they reached a special spot. The Prophet Ibrahim looked at his loving son whereas Prophet Isma’il (as) cast a glance at his, father obediently and cheerfully. The father laid his son prostrate on the ground. He was standing beside him. His heart was beating violently. He was shaking with emotions when he drew the knife across the neck of his son. It was a moment of action, an action that was very hard to put into practice.
Allah highly appreciated them for their obedience and they heard a voice: “0′ Ibrahim! you have indeed shown the truth of the vision. Surely do We reward the doers of good.” (Surah As-Saffat 37:105)
When Prophet Ibrahim fulfilled the command of the dream, he was ordered not to sacrifice his own son. A ram was provided in his stead. The Prophet Isma’il stood up and the ram was sacrificed. So the moment of suspense came to an end and both the father and the son expressed a deep sense of happiness and gratitude. From that time until today, the savage custom of human sacrifice has been absolutely abolished.
GLAD TIDINGS OF PROPHET ISHAQ
When the Prophet Ibrahim displayed his unstinted submission to the orders of Allah by trying to sacrifice his beloved son Ismail he was informed of a glad-tiding regarding the birth of baby from Sarah, his first wife. The Holy Qur’an affirms: “And We gave him the good news of Ishaq (Isaac), a Prophet among the good ones and We showered our blessings on him and on Ishaq, and of their offspring are the doers of good and also those who are clearly unjust to their ownselves.” (Surah As-Saffat 37:112-113)
Time passed by and Sarah got pregnant. At last she gave birth to a male baby and they gave him the name of Ishaq. Later on Isma’il proved to be the Prophet of the Muslims and Ishaq became the Prophet of the Jews.
DEATH OF IBRAHIM
Ibrahim was circumcised in the middle of his life. Narrated Abu Huraira: Allah’s Apostle said “The Prophet Abraham circumcised himself after he had passed the age of eighty years and he circumcised himself with an adze.” (Sahih Al Bukhari 008.074.313 )
He lived for 175 years. When he passed away, he was buried in Hebron, twenty miles south-west of Jerusalem. Ibrahim, the khalil of Allah (swt) is on the 6th level of heaven: Sahih Al Bukhari 001.008.345. Narrated Abu Dhar: ……”Abu Dhar added that the Prophet met Adam, Idris, Moses, Jesus and Abraham, he (Abu Dhar) did not mention on which heaven they were but he mentioned that he (the Prophet ) met Adam on the nearest heaven and Abraham on the sixth heaven.”
Ibrahim will be the first one to be clothed on the Day of Resurrection. Narrrated Ibn Abbas Allah’s Apostle said, “You will be resurrected (and assembled) bare-footed, naked and uncircumcised.” The Prophet then recited the Divine Verse:– “As We began the first creation, We shall repeat it: Apromise We have undertaken. Truly we shall do it.” (21.104) He added, “The first to be dressed will be Abraham…. (Sahih Al Bukhari 004.055.656)
The first House of Allah, the Ka’bah was erected by the Prophet Adam. It was reconstructed by Prophet Ibrahim and his first born son, Prophet Isma’il.
The other names of the Kabah- Literally, Kabah in Arabic means a high place with respect and prestige. The word Kabah may also be derivative of a word meaning a cube.
Some of these other names include:
Bait ul Ateeq- which means, according to one meaning, the earliest and ancient. According to the second meaning, it means independent and liberating. Both meanings could be taken
Bayt ul Haram-the honorable house
The Muqam-e-Ibrahim is still outside the enclosure of the Kabah. It is a place of marble-like stone on which he stood to raise the walls of the sanctuary at Mecca. This stone contains the sunken imprints of the feet of the great Prophet Ibrahim. Picture is located here: http://www.islamicity.org/culture/MOSQUES/Makkah/SSPI.htm
The Holy Qur’an testifies to the hallowed sanctity of this stone by declaring it to be one of the Signs of Allah. It says: “We made the House a resort for men and a place of security after saying: Take as your place of worship the spot where Ibrahim stood to pray. And We enjoined Ibrahim and Isma’il by saying: Purify My House for those who visit it and those who meditate therein; and those who bow down and those who prostrate themselves.” (Surah Al-Baqara 2:125)
Sahih Al Bukhari. 001.008.395. Narrated ‘Umar (bin Al-Khattab). The Prophet said: “My Lord agreed with me in three things: 1. I said,”O Allah’s Apostle, I wish we took the station of Abraham as our praying place (for some of our prayers). So came the Divine Inspiration: And take you (people) the station of Abraham as a place of prayer (for some of your prayers e.g. two Rakat of Tawaf of Ka’ba)…..”
Sahih Al Bukhari. 002.026.653. Narrated ‘Aisha (the wife of the Prophet) that Allah’s Apostle said to her, “Do you know that when your people (Quraish) rebuilt the Ka’ba, they decreased it from its original foundation laid by Abraham?” I said, “O Allah’s Apostle! Why don’t you rebuild it on its original foundation laid by Abraham?” He replied, “Were it not for the fact that your people are close to the pre-lslamic Period of ignorance (i.e. they have recently become Muslims) I would have done so.” The sub-narrator, ‘Abdullah (bin ‘Umar ) stated: ‘Aisha ‘must have heard this from Allah’s Apostle for in my opinion Allah’s Apostle had not placed his hand over the two corners of the Ka’ba opposite Al-Hijr only because the Ka’ba was not rebuilt on its original foundations laid by Abraham.
The measurements of the Kaba’s Ibrahimic foundation are as follows:
- -the eastern wall was 48 feet and 6 inches
- -the Hateem side wall was 33 feet
- -the side between the black stone and the Yemeni corner was 30 feet
- -the Western side was 46.5 feet
Sahih Al Bukhari. 002.026.656. Narrated Yazid bin Ruman from ‘Urwa: ‘Aisha said that the Prophet said to her, “O Aisha! Were your nation not close to the Pre-lslamic Period of Ignorance, I would have had theKa’ba demolished and would have included in it the portion which had been left, and would have made it at a level with the ground and wouldhave made two doors for it, one towards the east and the other towardsthe west, and then by doing this it would have been built on the foundations laid by Abraham.” That was what urged Ibn-Az-Zubair to demolish the Ka’ba. Jazz said, “I saw Ibn-Az-Zubair when he demolishedand rebuilt the Ka’ba and included in it a portion of Al-Hijr (the unroofed portion of Ka’ba which is at present in the form of a compound towards the north-west of the Ka’ba). I saw the original foundations of Abraham which were of stones resembling the humps of camels.” So Jarir asked Yazid, “Where was the place of those stones?” Jazz said, “I will just now show it to you.” So Jarir accompanied Yazid and entered Al-Hijr, and Jazz pointed to a place and said, “Hereit is.” Jarir said, “It appeared to me about six cubits from Al-Hijr or so.”
REFERENCES AND DISCLAIMER
Most of this information was taken from the internet. At times where necessary I have changed the grammar and sentence structure. The Ibrahim and Kabah sections, I added the daleel from ahadith. Otherwise this compilation was copied and pasted into one whole article from the following sources:
In the Footsteps of Ibrahim (as) by Dr. Seyyed Hossein Nasr
The Descendents of Adam by Mohammad Fazli Sameer taken from
THE STORY OF IBRAHIM, ISMAIL, ISHAQ & YACUB
Taken from The Stories of the Prophets
by Ibn Kathir
When Abraham realized that no one else was gong to believe his call, he decided to emigrate. He left his people and traveled with his wife and Lot to a city called Ur, then to another called Haran, and then to Palestine.
Allah the Almighty told us: But Lut had faith in Him: he said: “I will leave home for the sake of my Lord: for He is Exalted in Might and Wise. (29:26)
After Palestine Abraham traveled to Egypt, calling people to believe in Allah wherever he traveled judging fairly between people, and guiding them to truth and righteousness.
Abu Hurairah narrated that Abraham (PBUH) did not tell a lie except on three occasions, twice for the sake of Allah (Exalted and Almighty) when he said: “I am indeed sick (at heart)!” (37: 89) and when he said: ” (I have not done this but) the big idol has done it.” The (third was) that while Abraham and Sarah (his wife) were going (on a journey), they passed by (the territory of) a tyrant. Someone said to the tyrant: “This man (i.e. Abraham (PBUH) is accompanied by a very charming lady.” So, he sent for Abraham and asked him about Sarah saying: “Who is this lad?” Abraham said: “She is my sister.” Abraham went to Sarah and said: “O Sarah! There are no believers on the surface on the earth except you and me. This man asked me about you and I have told him that you are my sister, do not contradict my statement.” The tyrant then called Sarah, and when she went to him, he tried to take hold her with his hand, but (his hand got stiff and) he was confounded. He asked Sarah: “Pray to Allah for me and I shall not harm you. So Sarah asked Allah to cure him and he got cured. He tried to take hold of her for the second time, but (his hand got as stiff as or stiffer than before and) he was more confounded. He again requested Sarah: “Pray to Allah for me and I shall not harm you.” Sarah asked Allah again and he became all right. He then called one of his guards (who had brought her) and said: “You have not brought me a human being but have brought me a devil.” The tyrant then gave Hajar as a maidservant to Sarah. Sarah came back (to Abraham) while he was praying. Abraham, gesturing with his hand, asked: “What has happened?” She relied: “Allah has spoiled the evil plot of the infidel (or immoral person) and gave me Hajar for service.” Abu Hurairah then addressed his listeners saying: “That (Hajar) was your mother, O Bani Ma-is-Sama (i.e., the Arab, the descendants of Ishmael, Hajar’s son).”
Abraham’s wife Sarah was sterile. She had been given an Egyptian woman, Hajar, as a servant. Abraham had aged, and his hair was gray after many years spent in calling people to Allah. Sarah thought that she and Abraham were lonely because she could not have a child. Therefore, she offered her husband her servant Hajar in marriage. Hajar gave birth to her first son Ishmael (Isma’il) when Abraham was an old man.
Abraham lived on earth worshipping Allah and calling people to monotheism, but he was journeying to Allah, knowing that his days on earth were limited and that they would be followed by death, and finally resurrection. The knowledge of life after death filled Abraham with peace, love, and certitude.
One day he begged Allah to show him how He brought the death back to life. Allah commanded Abraham to take four birds, cut them up, mingle their body parts, divide them into four portions, and place them on top of four different hills, then call back the birds in Allah’s name. Immediately the mingled parts of the birds separated to join their original bodies in different places, and the birds flew back to Abraham.
Almighty Allah revealed: Behold! Abraham said: “My Lord! show me how thou givest life to the dead. He said: “Dost thou not then believe?” He said: “Yea! but to satisfy my own understanding.” He said: “Take four birds; tame them to turn to thee; put a portion of them on every hill and call to them; they will come to thee (flying) with speed. Then know that Allah is Exalted in Power Wise.”
SECTION 2 – The Story of Ishmael (PBUH)
One day, Abraham woke up and asked his wife Hajar to get her son and prepare for a long journey. In a few days, Abraham started out with his wife Hajar and their son Ishmael. The child was still nursing and not yet weaned. Abraham walked through cultivated land, desert, and mountains until he reached the desert of the Arabian Peninsula and came to an uncultivated valley having no fruit, no trees, no food, no water. The valley had no sign of life. After Abraham had helped his wife and child to dismount, he left them with a small amount of food and water which was hardly enough for two days. He turned around and walked away. His wife hurried after him asking: “Where are you going, Abraham, leaving us in this barren valley?”.
Abraham did not answer her, but continued walking. She repeated what she said, but he remained silent. Finally, she understood he was not acting on his own initiative. She realized that Allah had commanded him to do this. She asked him: “Did Allah command you to do so?” He replied: “Yes.” Then his great wife said: “We are not going to be lost, since Allah, Who has commanded you, is with us.”
Abraham invoked Almighty Allah thus: “”O our Lord! I have made some of my offspring to dwell in a valley without cultivation by thy Sacred House; in order O our Lord that they may establish regular prayer: so fill the hearts of some among men with love towards them and feed them with Fruits: so that they may give thanks. O our Lord! truly Thou dost know what we conceal and what we reveal: for nothing whatever is hidden from Allah whether on earth or in heaven.” (14: 37-38)
Ibn ‘Abbas narrated: “The first lady to use a girdle was the mother of Ishmael. She used a girdle so that she might hide her tracks from Sarah (by dragging it). Abraham brought her and her son Ishmael, while she was suckling him, to a place near the Kaba under a tree on the spot of Zamzam, at the highest place in the mosque. During those days there was no body in Mecca, nor was there any water so he made them sit over there and placed near them a leather bag containing some dates and a small water-skin containing some water and set out homeward. Ishmael’s mother followed him saying: “Oh Abraham! Where are you going leaving us in this valley where there is no person whose company we may enjoy, nor is there anything (to enjoy)?” She repeated that to him many times, but he did not look back at her. Then she asked him: “Has Allah ordered you to do so?” He said: “Yes.” She said: “Then He will not neglect us,” and returned while Abraham proceeded onwards. On reaching the Thaniya where they could not see him, he faced the Ka’ba, and raising both hands, invoked Allah in saying the following prayers: “O our Lord! I have made some of my offspring to dwell in a valley without cultivation by thy Sacred House; in order O our Lord that they may establish regular prayer: so fill the hearts of some among men With love towards them and feed them with Fruits: so that they may give thanks.”
Ibn ‘Abbas’s narration continued: “Ishmael’s mother went on suckling Ishmael and drinking from the water (she had). When the water in the water-skin had all been used up, she became thirsty and her child became thirsty. She started looking at him (i.e. Ishmael) tossing in agony. She left him, for she could not endure looking at hi, and fund that the mountain of As-Safa was the nearest mountain to her on that land. She stood on it and started looking at the valley keenly so that she might see somebody, but she could not see anybody. Then she descended fro As-Safab and when she reached the valley, she tucked up her robe and ran in the valley like a person in distress and trouble, till she crossed the valley and reached the mountain of Al-Marwa. There she stood and started looking, expecting to see somebody, but she could not see anybody. She repeated that (running between Safa and Marwa) seven times.”
The Prophet Muhammad (as-PBUH) said: “This is the source of the tradition of the Sa’y the going of people between them (i.e. As-Safe and Al-Marwa). When she reached Al-Marwa (for the last time) she heard a voice and she asked herself to be quiet and listened attentively. She heard the voice again and said: “O, (whoever you may be)! You have made me hear your voice; have you got something to help me?” And behold! She saw an angel at the place of Zamzam, digging the earth with his heel (or his wing) till water flowed from that place. She started to make something like a basin around it, using her hand in this way, and started filling her water-skin with water with her hands, and the water was flowing out after she had scooped some of it.”
The Prophet (PBUH) added: “May Allah bestow mercy on Ishmael’s mother! Had she let the Zamzam (flow without trying to control it)(or had she not scooped from that water to fill her water-skin), Zamzam would have been a stream flowing on the surface of the earth.”
The Prophet (PBUH) continued: “Then she drank (water) and suckled her child. The angel said to her: ‘Don’t be afraid of being neglected, for this is the House of Allah which will be built by this boy and his father, and Allah never neglects his people.’ The house (i.e. the Ka’ba) at that time was on a high place resembling a hillock, and hen torrents came, they flowed to its right and left.
“She lived in that way till some people from the tribe of Jurhum or a family from Jurhum passed by her and her child, as they (i.e. the Jurhum people) were coming through the way of Kada’. They landed in the lower part of Mecca where they saw a bird that had the habit of flying around after and not leaving it. They said: “This bird must be flying around water, though we know that there is no water in this valley.” They sent on or two messengers who discovered the source of water and returned to inform them of the water. So, they all came (towards the water). Ishmael’s mother was sitting near the water. They asked her: “Do you allow us to stay with you?” She replied: “Yes, but you will have no right to possess the water.;” They agreed to that. Ishmael’s mother was pleased with the whole situation, as she used to love to enjoy the company of people. So, the settled there, and later on the sent for their families, who came and settled with them so that some families became permanent residents there. The child (i.e. Ishmael) grew up and learned Arabic from them and (his virtues) caused them to love and admire him as he grew up, and when he reached the age of puberty they made him marry a woman amongst them”
The Prophet (PBUH) continued: “After Ishmael’s mother had died, Abraham came after Ishmael’s marriage in order to see his family that he had left before, but he did not find Ishmael there. When she asked Ishmael’s wife about him she replied: “He has gone in search for our livelihood.” Then he asked her about their way of living and their condition, and she replied: “We are living in misery; we are living in hardship and destitution,’ complaining to him. He said, “When you husband returns, convey y salutation to him and tell him to change the threshold of the gate (of his house).”
“When Ishmael came, he seemed to have felt something unusual, so he asked his wife: “Has anyone visited you?” She replied, “Yes, and old man of such-and-such description came and asked me about you, and informed him, and he asked about our state of living, and /I told him we were living in hardship and poverty.” On that Ishmael said: “Did he advise you anything?” She replied: “Yes, he told me to convey my salutation to you and to tell you to change the threshold of your gate.’ Ishmael said: “It was my father, and he has ordered me to divorce you. Go back to your family.” So, Ishmael divorced her and married another woman from among them (i.e. Jurhum).
“Then Abraham stayed away from them for a period as long as Allah wished and called on them again but did not find Ishmael. So he came to Ishmael’s wife and asked her about Ishmael. She said: “He has gone in search of our livelihood.” Abraham asked her: “How are you getting on?” asking her about their sustenance and living. She replied: “We are prosperous and well-off (i.e. we have everything in abundance).” Then she thanked Allah. Abraham said: “What kind of food do you eat?” She said: “Meat”. He said: “What do you drink?” She said: “Water”. He said: “O Allah! Bless their meat and water.”
The Prophet (PBUH) added: “At that time they did not have grain, and if they had grain, he would have also invoked Allah to bless it. If somebody has only two things as his sustenance, his health and disposition will be badly affected, unless he lives in Mecca.”
The Prophet (PBUH) continued: “Then Abraham said to Ishmael’s wife” ‘When your husband comes, give my regards to him and tell him he should keep firm the threshold of his gate.” When Ishmael came back, he asked his wife: “Did anyone call on you?” She replied: “Yes, a good looking old man came to me,” so she praised him and added: “He asked about you and I informed him, he asked about our livelihood and I told him that we were in good condition.” Ishmael asked her: “Did he give you any piece of advise?” She said: “Yes, he told me to give his regards to you and ordered that you should keep firm the threshold of your gate.” On that Ishmael said: “It was my father, and you are the threshold (of the gate). He has ordered me to keep you with me.”
“Then Abraham stayed away from them for a period as long as Allah wished and called on them afterwards. He saw Ishmael under a tree near Zam-Zam, sharpening his arrows. When he saw Abraham, he rose up to welcome him (and they greeted each other as a father does with his son or a son does with his father). Abraham said: “O Ishmael! Allah has given me an order.” Ishmael said: “Do what your Lord has ordered you to do.” Abraham asked: “Will you help me?” Ishmael said: “I will help you.” Abraham said: “Allah has ordered me to build a house here,” pointing to a hillock higher than the land surrounding it.
“Then they raised the foundations of the House (i.e. the Ka’ba). Ishmael brought the stones while Abraham built, and when the walls became high, Ishmael brought this stone and put it for Abraham, who stood over it and carried on building. When Ishmael was handing the stones, and both of them were saying: “”Our Lord! Accept (this service) from us for thou art the All-Hearing the All-Knowing.” (Surah 2: 127) Then both of them went on building and going round the Ka’ba saying: “”Our Lord! accept (this service) from us for thou art the All-Hearing the All-Knowing.” (Sahih Al-Bukhari)
Ibn ‘Abbas narrated a slightly different version: “When Abraham had differences with his wife (because of her jealousy of Hajar, Ishmael’s mother), he took Ishmael and his mother and went away. They had a water-skin with them containing some water. Ishmael’s mother used to drink water from the water-skin so that her milk would increase for the child. When Abraham reached Mecca, he made her sit under a tree and afterwards returned home. Ishmael’s mother followed him, and when they reached Kada’, she called him from behind: “O Abraham! To whom are you leaving us?” He replied: “(I am leaving you) to Allah’s (care). She said: “I am satisfied to be with Allah”. She returned to hr place and started drinking water from the water-skin, and her milk increased for her child.
“When the water had all been used up, she said to herself: “I had better go and look so that I may see somebody.” She ascended As-Safa Mountain and looked, hoping to see somebody but in vain. When she came down to the valley, she ran till she reached Al-Marwa Mountain. She ran to and fro (between the two mountains) many times. Then she said to herself: “I had better go and see the state of the child.” She went and found it in a state of one on the point of dying. She could not endure to watch it dying and said (to herself): “If I go and look, I may find somebody.” She went and ascended Al-Safa an Al-Marwa. Again she said (to herself ): “I had better go back and see the state of the child.” But suddenly she heard a voice, and she said to that strange voice: “Help us if you can offer any help.” Lo! It was Gabriel (who had mad the voice). Gabriel hit the earth with his heel like this (Ibn’ Abbas hit the earth with his heel to illustrate it), and so the water gushed out. Ishmael’s mother was astonished and started digging.”
Abu Al-Qasim, i.e. The Prophet (PBUH) said: “If she had left the water, (flow naturally without her intervention), it would have been flowing on the surface of the earth.”
Ibn Abbas continued narrating: “Ishmael’s mother started drinking from the water, and her milk increased for her child. Afterwards some people of the tribe of Jurhum saw some birds while passing through the bottom of the valley and that astonished them. They said: “Birds can only be found at a place is water.” They sent a messenger, who searched the place and found water, and returned to inform them about it. Then they all went to her and said: “O Ishmael’s mother! Will you allow us to be with you (or dwell with you)?” (And thus they stayed there).
“Later on her boy reached the age of puberty and married a lady from them. Then an idea occurred to Abraham, which he disclosed to his wife (Sarah). “I want to call on my dependants I left (at Mecca).” When he went there he greeted Ishmael’s wife and said: “Where is Ishmael?” She replied: “He has gone out hunting.” Abraham said to her: “When he comes tell him to change the threshold of his gate.” When Ishmael came, she told him the same, whereupon Ishmael said to her: “You are the threshold, so go to your family (i.e. you are divorced).
“Again Abraham thought of visiting his dependants whom he had left (at Mecca), and he told his wife (Sarah) of his intentions. Abraham came to Ishmael’s house and asked: “Where is Ishmael?” Ishmael’s wife replied: “He has gone out hunting,” and added “Will you stay (for some time) and have something to eat and drink?” Abraham asked: “What is your food and what is your drink?” She replied: “Our food is meat and our drink is water”. He said: “O Allah! Bless their meals and their drink.”
Abu Al-Qasim, i.e. Prophet (PBUH) said: “Because of Abraham’s invocation there are blessings (in Mecca)”
Ibn Abbas continued: ” Once again Abraham thought of visiting his family he had left (at Mecca), so he told his wife (Sarah) of his decision. He went and found Ishmael behind the Zam-zam well, mending his arrows. He said: “O Ishmael, your Lord has ordered me to build a house for Him.” Ishmael said: “Obey (the order of) your Lord.” Abraham said: “Allah has ordered me that you should help me therein.” Ishmael said: “Then I will do so.” So both of then rose and Abraham started building (the Ka’ba) while Ishmael went on handing him the stones, and both of them were saying: “”Our Lord! Accept(this service) from us for thou art the All-Hearing the All-Knowing.”
When the building became high and the old man (Abraham) could no longer lift the stones (to such a high position) he stood over the stone o Al-Maqam and Ishmael carried on handing him the stones, and both of the were saying: “”Our Lord! Accept (this service) from us for thou art the All-Hearing the All-Knowing.” Allah the Almighty told us of Abraham’s affliction with his beloved son: (and he said after rescue from the fire) “He said: “I will go to my Lord! He will surely guide me! O my Lord! grant me a righteous (son)! So We gave him the good news of a boy ready to suffer and forbear. Then when (the son) reached (the age of) (serious) work with him he said: “O my son! I see in vision that I offer thee in sacrifice: now see what is thy view!” (The son) said: “O my father! do as thou art commanded: thou will find me if Allah so wills one practicing Patience and Constancy! So when they had both submitted their wills (to Allah) and He had laid Him prostrate on his forehead (for sacrifice). We called out to him “O Abraham! Thou hast already fulfilled the vision!” thus indeed do We reward those who do right. For this was obviously a trial And We ransomed him with a momentous sacrifice: And We left (this blessing) for him among generations (to come) in later times: Peace and salutation to Abraham! Thus indeed do We reward those who do right. For he was one of Our believing Servants.” (Surah 37:99-11)
Time passed. One day Abraham was sitting outside his tent, thinking of his son Ishmael and Allah’s sacrifice. His heart was filled with awe and love for Allah for his countless blessings. A big tear dropped from his eyes and reminded him of Ishmael.
In the meantime, three angles descended to the earth: Gabriel, Israphael, and Michael. They came in human shape and saluted Abraham. Abraham rose and welcomed them. He took them inside his tent, thinking they were strangers and guests. He seated them and made sure they were comfortable, then excused himself to go to his people.
His wife Sarah arose when he entered. She had become old and white haired. Abraham said to her: “We have three strangers in the house.” “Who are they?” she asked. “I do not know any of them,” he answered. “What food have we got?” Abraham asked. “Half a sheep,” she replied. “Half a sheep! Slaughter a fat calf for them; they are strangers and guests,” he ordered while leaving.
The servants roasted and served the calf. Abraham invited the angels to eat so as to encourage them. He continued, but when he glanced at his guests to assure they were eating, he noticed that none of them touched their food. He said to them: “Are you not going to eat?” He resumed eating, but when he glanced at them again he found that they were still not eating. Their hands did not reach out for the food. He began to fear them.
Abraham’s fears increased. The angels, however, were reading his inner thoughts and one of them said: “Do not fear.” Abraham raised his head and replied: “Indeed I am in fear. I have asked you to eat food but you do not stretch out your hands to eat. Do you intend me evil?”
One of the angels smiled and said: “We do not eat. We are Allah’s angles.” One of them then turned towards his wife and conveyed the glad tidings about Isaac (Ishaaq).
Almighty Allah revealed: “There came Our Messengers to Abraham with glad tidings. They said “Peace!” He answered “Peace!” and hastened to entertain them with a roasted calf. But when he saw their hands went not towards the (meal) he felt some mistrust of them and conceived a fear of them. They said: “Fear not: we have been sent against the people of Lut.” And his wife was standing (there) and she laughed: but We gave her glad tidings of Isaac and after him of Jacob. She said: “Alas for me! Shall I bear a child seeing I am an old woman and my husband here is an old man? That would indeed be a wonderful thing!” hey said: “Dost thou wonder at Allah’s decree? The grace of Allah and His blessings on you O ye people of the house! for He is indeed worthy of all praise full of all glory!” (Surah 11: 69-73).
SECTION THREE – The story of Isaac (Ishaaq) and Jacob (Yaqub) (Peace be upon them)
The Qur’an does not give details of Isaac’s life (PBUH), but reliable Qur’anic commentators mentioned that when Abraham felt that his life was drawing to a close, he wished to see Isaac married. He did not want Isaac to marry one of the Canaanites, who were pagans, so he sent a trustworthy servant to Haran in Iraq to choose a bride for Isaac. The servant’s choice fell on Rebekah Bint Bethuel, Ibn Nahor, who was a brother of Abraham. Isaac married her 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 prophet hood. This ill-feeling became so serious that Esau threatened to kill his brother. Fearing of his life, Jacob fled the country.
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 two 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 Israel (belonging to the people pf Israel).
The People of the Book claimed that when Isaac (PBUH) grew old, 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 on 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 said: “Did you bring it an hour ago and asked me to pray for you?” Esau answered: “No, I swear I did not,” and he knew his brother had preceded him in this matter and he was sick at heart.
The People of the Book said that Esau threatened to kill his brother when their father was dead. They also 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 Laban’s daughters. She told her husband Isaac to command him with that advise and pray for him, and he did.
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.
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 called Rachel (Rahil). The later was the better and the 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 feats and gathered people for the wedding. He married Leah, his elder daughter, to hi at night. She was weak-sighted and ugly. When morning came, Jacob discovered that 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.
Almighty Allah compensated Leah’s weakness by giving her sons. The first was named Reuben (Robel), after whom there was Simeon (Shamun), Levi (Lawi) and Judah (Yahudh). Rachel felt jealous of Leah’s having sons, she was barren. She gave her slave Bilha to her servant 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 given birth to a son, so she in turn, gave her slave Zilpah to Jacob (PBUH). Zilpah gave birth to two son, Gad and Asher. Then Leah got pregnant and gave birth to her fifth son, Isssachar, 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.
The 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 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 goats 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 troughs 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 balk 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. His uncle and his sons faces changed as if they (the sheep and goats) had been stolen from the.
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 like 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 had they taken his idols with hem?
Jacob had no knowledge of his idols, so he denied he had taken them from him. The 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 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 farewells they departed each returning his own country.
When Jacob approached the land of Seir, the angles 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 All 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) prepare a great present for his brother: two hundred female goats and twenty male goats, two hundred ewes and twenty rams, thirty milch camels, forty cows and ten 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.
When the dawn of the second day came one of the angles appeared in the shape of a man. Jacob began to wrestle wit him. They were neck and neck until the angel injured his thigh and Jacob became lame. When the day was breaking, the angle said to him: “What is your name?” He answered: “Jacob” The angle said: “After today you shall not b called (anything) but Israel.” Jacob asked: “And 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 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 prostrated in salutation to Adam. When Esau saw him, he ran towards him, and 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: “Thos 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 wet in advance before him. Jacob and his family followed with the flocks and hers and slaves to the mountains (Seir).
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 Shechem Ibn Hamor with one hundred goats and built an altar, which he recalled Ayl, as stands today and later Solomon Son of David (PBUT) rebuilt it. It is in the place of the stone which eh had earlier anointed with oil, as was mentioned before.
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 and the pain from the circumcision had increased, Jacob’s sons approached and killed them till the last one. They killed Shechem 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.
Then Rachel got pregnant and gave birth to a son, Banjamin, 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.
Jacob’s sons were twelve men. From Leah there were Rueben (Robil), Simeon (Shamun), Levi (Lawi), Judah (Yahudh), Issachar (Isakher), and Zebulun (Zablun). From Rachel there were Joseph (PBUH) and Benjamin. From Rachel’s slave there were Dan and Naphtali (Neftali), and from Leah’s slave there were Gad and Asher.
Jacob came to hi father Isaac and settled wit 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 aid that Abraham died at the age of one hundred seventy-five.
All the Almighty declared in the Glorious Qur’an: “And who turns away from the religion of Abraham but such as debase their souls with folly? Him We chose and rendered pure in this world: and he will be in the Hereafter in the ranks of the righteous. Behold! his Lord said to him: “Bow (thy will to me)” He said: “I bow (my will) to the Lord and Cherisher of the universe. And this was the legacy that Abraham left to his sons and so did Jacob; “O my sons! Allah hath chosen the faith for you; then die not except in the faith of Islam.” Were ye witnesses when death appeared before Jacob? Behold he said to his sons: “What will ye worship after me?” They said: “We shall worship thy Allah and the Allah of thy fathers of Abraham Isma`il and Isaac the one (true) Allah to Him we bow (in Islam).” That was a People that hath passed away. They shall reap the fruit of what they did and ye of what ye do! of their merits there is no question in your case! They say: “Become Jews or Christians if ye would be guided (to salvation).” Say thou: “Nay! (I would rather) the religion of Abraham the true and he joined not gods with Allah.” Say ye: “We believe in Allah and the revelation given to us and to Abraham Isma`il Isaac Jacob and the Tribes and that given to Moses and Jesus and that given to (all) Prophets from their Lord we make no difference between one and another of them and we bow to Allah (in Islam).” So if they believe as ye believe they are indeed on the right path; but if they turn back it is they who are in schism; but Allah will suffice thee as against them and He is the All-Hearing the All- Knowing. (Our religion is) the baptism of Allah; and who can baptize better than Allah? and it is He whom we worship. Say: Will ye dispute with us about Allah seeing that He is our Lord and your Lord; that we are responsible for our doings and ye for yours; and that we are sincere (in our faith) in Him? Or do ye say that Abraham Isma`il Isaac Jacob and the Tribes were Jews or Christians? Say: Do ye know better than Allah? Ah! who is more unjust than those who conceal the testimony they have from Allah? But Allah is not unmindful of what ye do!” (Surah 2: 130-140)
In another surah Almighty Allah declared: “Ye people of the Book! Why dispute ye about Abraham when the Law and the Gospel were not revealed till after him? Have ye no understanding? Ah! ye are those who fell to disputing (even) in matters of which ye had some knowledge! but why dispute ye in matters of which ye have no knowledge? It is Allah Who knows and ye who know not! Abraham was not a Jew nor yet a Christian but he was true in faith and bowed his will to Allah’s (which is Islam) and he joined not gods with Allah. Without doubt among men the nearest of kin to Abraham are those who follow him as are also this Apostle and those who believe; and Allah is the Protector of those who have faith.” (Surah 3: 65-68)
Allah the Exalted also confirmed: “But verily thy Lord to those who do wrong in ignorance but who thereafter repent and make amends thy Lord after all this is Oft-Forgiving Most Merciful. Abraham was indeed a model devoutly obedient to Allah (and) true in faith and he joined not gods with Allah: He showed his gratitude for the favors of Allah Who chose him and guided him to a straight way. And We gave him good in this world and he will be in the Hereafter in the ranks of the righteous. So We have taught thee the inspired (message) “Follow the ways of Abraham the true in faith and he joined not gods with Allah.” (surah 16: 119-123)
PROPHET HUD (AS)
Prophet Hood (Hud) Prophet Hood was sent to the Aad people. Hood (Eber of the Bible) is said to be the grandson of Arphazed, the grandson of Nooh (Translation of Quran by Mohammad Alt, 90).
Allah says that to Aad (We sent) their brother Hood. He said: “O my people serve Allah, you have no God other than Him. Will you not then guard against evil” (Aaraf 7:65): and, “O my people, I ask of you no reward for it. My reward is only with Him Who created me. Do you not then understand”? and, “O my people, ask forgiveness of your Lord, then turn to Him. He will send on you clouds puring down abundance of rain and add strength, and turn not back, guilty” (Hood, 11:51-53), and, “surely I am a faithful Messenger to you, so keep your duty to Allah and obey me, and keep your duty to Him who aids you with cattle and children, and gardens and fountains” (Shu’ara, 26:131-134).
The chiefs of the unbelievers said: certainly we see you in folly, and we certainly think you to be the liar (Aaraf, 7:66); and, 0 Hood, you have no clear argument, and we are not going to desert our gods for your word, and we are not believers in you; and we see not but that some of our gods have smitten you with evil. (Hood, II:53-54)
Hood said: O my people, there is no folly in me, but I am a Messenger of the Lord of the worlds. I deliver to you the Messages of my Lord and I am a faithful adviser to you. Do you wonder that a reminder has come to you from among you that he may warn you? And remember when He made you successors after Nooh’s people and increased you in excellence of make. So remember the bounties of Allah, that you may be successful (Aaraf, 7: 67-69)
and surely I call Allah to witness and you too bear witness that I am innocent of what you associate with Allah besides Him. So scheme against me all together, then give me no respite. Surely I put my trust in Allah, my Lord and your Lord. There is no living creature but He grasps it by its forelock. Surely my Lord is on the Right Path. But if you turn away, then indeed I have delivered to you that with which I am sent to you. And my Lord will bring another people in your place, and you cannot do Him any harm. Surely my Lord is the Preserver of all things (Hood, II:54-57)
and surely I fear for you the chastisement of a Grievous Day (Shu’ara, 26:135). They said: have you come to us that we may serve Allah alone, and give up that which our fathers used to serve? Then bring to us what you threaten us with, if you are of the truthful (Aaraf, 7:70). This is not but a fabrication of the ancients, and we will not be chastised (Shu’ara, 26:137-138).
Allah says: they rejected him, then We destroyed them (Shu’ara, 26: 139). They were overtaken by a curse in this world and on the Day of Resurrection (Hood. 11:60). As regards their destruction, Quran tells us: so when they saw a cloud advancing towards their valley, they said: this a cloud bringing us rain. Nay, it is that which you sought to hasten, a wind wherein is painful chastisement destroying every thing by the Command of its Lord. So at dawn nothing could be seen except their dwellings. Thus do we reward the guilty people (Ahqaf, 46:24-25). Quran further says: and as for Aad, they were destroyed by a roaring, violent wind, which Allah made to prevail against them for seven nights and eight days continuously, so that you might have seen the people therein prostrate as if they were trunks of hollow palm trees (Haaqqa, 69:6-7).
It is said that from amongst the Aad people, only 70 persons had accepted the Message of Hood and they all were saved from the disaster. It is their descendants who, later on, came to be known as the Second Aad or the Samood. The tomb of Prophet Hood is still traditionally shown in Hadhramaut about 90 miles north of Muk’alla. There are still ruins an inscription of the Aad time in the neighbourhood. There is an annual pilgrimage to the tomb of Hood in the month of Rajab.
After Aad the next nation that flourished on earth was known as Samood. They were the descendants of Samood, the son of Abir, the son of Sam, the son of Nooh. Thus they were the cousins to Aad. They flourished more than 200 years after Aad, and occupied the territory known as Al-Hijr (Hijr 15:80) and the plain known as Wadi-ul-Qura which forms the southern boundary of Syria and the northern one of Arabia (Mohammad Ali, ibid, 911). Thus their seat was in the North West corner of Arabia between Medina and Syria with their centre at Mada-in-e-Swaleh, which was known in their times as Hijr. The Samood people excavated various rocks, and after having hewn and carved them, took up their abode therein. These rocks arc to this very day known by the name of Athalib (Mohammad Ali, ibid, 914). With the advance of material civilisation the Samood people became Godless and arrogant and were destroyed by earthquake.
PROPHET NUH (AS)
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. According to the history of the People of the Book , (“People of the Book” refers to the Jews and Christians, so-called by Allah because they received Revealed Books, the Taurat, Zabur, and Injeel. These names are translated “Torah”, “Psalms”, and “Gospels”, respectively, but the books that are extant are corrupt. Of the Revealed Books, only the Qur’an remains exactly as it was revealed) the period between the birth of Noah and the death of Adam was one hundred forty-six years (According to Genesis 5, New Revised Standard version, Noah was born one hundred twenty six years after the death of Adam). Ibn Abbas narrated that Prophet Muhammad said: “The period between Adam and Noah was ten centuries.” (According to Genesis 5, New Revised Standard version, 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 statements or narratives taken from the People of the Book are not necessarily credible.)
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, Suwaan, Yaghutha, Yaauga, and Nasran, according to the power they thought these gods possessed. Allah the Almighty revealed: And they Idolaters have said: “You shall not leave your gods, nor shall you leave Wadd, nor Suwa, nor Yaghuth, nor Yauq nor Nasr (names of the idols). ” Surah 71: 23 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 some time, 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. Into this environment Allah sent Noah with His message to his people. Noah was the only intellectual not caught in the whirlpool of man’s destruction which was caused by polytheism.
Commentary – Idolatry
Worshiping anything other than Allah is a tragedy that results not only in the loss of freedom (by worshiping anything other than Allah, man becomes enslaved to Satan, who is himself a creature, and becomes harnessed to his own baser qualities); 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 worshipers (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.
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 was 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 his 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.” 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: And indeed We sent Noah to his people (and 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 disbelievers 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.” Surah 11: 27
The Disbelievers Attempt to Bargain
Thus the conflict between Noah and the heads of his people intensified. The disbelievers tried to bargain: “Listen, Noah, if you want us to believe in you, then dismiss your believers. They are meek and poor, while we are elite and rich; no faith can 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: “And 0 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. And 0 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 Ghaib (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 (as regards Belief etc.). In that case, I should, indeed be one of the Zalimeen (wrong-doers, oppressors, etc.). ” Surah 11: 29-31 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: “0 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.” Surah 7: 32-32
The battle continued; the arguments between the disbelievers and Noah became prolonged. When all the refutations of the disbelievers 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. ” Surah 7:60 Noah responded in the manner of the prophets: “0 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. ” Surah 7:61-62 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: “0 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: “0 my Lord! Verily, I have called my people night and day (i.e. secretly and openly to accept the doctrine of Islamic Monotheism), but all my calling added nothing but to (their) flight (from the truth). And verily! Every time 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 (first Nutfah, then Alaqa, and then Mudgha -see Surah 23: 13-14)
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) And Allah has made for you the earth wide spread (an expanse) that you may go about therein in broad roads.” Noah said: “My Lord! They have disobeyed me, and followed one whose Wealth and children give him no increase but only loss. And they have plotted a mighty plot. And they have said: ‘You shall not leave your gods, nor Shall you leave Wadd, nor Suwa, nor Yaghuth, nor Yauq nor Nasr (names of the idols). And indeed they have led many astray. And (0 Allah)! Grant no increase to the Zalimeen (polytheists, wrong-doers, and disbelievers, 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. Surah 71: 1-25
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: And 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). Surah 29: 14
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 disbelievers was. He was sad for his people, but he never reached the point of despair.
Noah Prays for the Disbelievers’ 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 disbelievers be destroyed. He said: ‘My Lord! Leave not one of the disbelievers on the earth. If you leave them, they will mislead Your slaves, and they will beget none but wicked disbelievers.” Surah 71:27 Allah accepted Noah’s prayer. The case was closed, and He passed His judgment on the disbelievers in the form of a flood. Allah the Exalted ordered His worshiper 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.” Surah 11: 37
Noah Builds the Ark
Noah chose a place outside the city, far from the sea. He collected wood and tools and began to work day and night to build the ark. The people’s mockery continued: “0 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: And 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. ” Surah 11:38-392
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, 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. Surah 11: 40
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 disbelievers and did not go on board. The scholars (Ulama) hold different opinions on the number of those who were with Noah on the ship. Ibn Abbas stated that ther were eighty believers, while Ka’ab Al-Ahbar held that there were seventy-two. Others claimed that there were ten 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 the earth. Water continued pouring from the sky and 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: And 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), “0 my son! Embark with us and be not with the disbelievers.” 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. And Noah called upon his Lord and said, “0 my Lord! Verily, my son is of my family! And certainly, Your Promise is true, and You are the Most Just of the judges.” He said: “0 Noah! Surely, he is not of your family; verily, his work is unrighteous, so ask not of Me that of which you have no knowledge! I admonish you, lest you be one of the ignorants.” Noah said: “0 my Lord! I seek refuge with You from asking You that of which I have no knowledge. And unless You forgive me and have Mercy on me, I would indeed be one of the losers.” Surah 11: 45-47
The Flood Ends
And it was said: “0 earth! Swallow up your water, and 0 sky! Withhold (your rain).” And the water was diminished (made to subside) and the Decree (of Allah) was fulfilled (i.e. 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 wrong-doing)!” Surah 11: 44
It was said: “0 Noah! Come down (from the ship) with peace from Us and blessings on you and on the people 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.” Surah 11:48
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 disbelievers and polytheists.
The Believers Disembark
Noah released the birds and the beasts, 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 flood. Following the disembarkation there was a day of fasting in thanks to Allah.
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 Amru Ibn Alaas narrated that Prophet Muhammad 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 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. And I warn you against associating partners with Allah and against pride.’” Some traditions said that his grave is in the Sacred Mosque in Mecca (Makkah), while others said that he was buried in Baalabak, a city in Iraq.
PROPHET SALIH (as)
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 , 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: “0 my people! Worship Allah, you have no other Ilah (god) but Him.” Surah 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: “0 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 worshiped? But we are really in grave doubt as to that which you invite us to (monotheism).” Surah 11: 62
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 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 Qur’anic commentators said that the people of Thamud gathered on a certain day at their meeting place, and the prophet Salih 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 ten 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, bringing forth a great ten-month pregnant she-camel. When their set eyes on it, they were amazed. They saw a great thing, a wonderful sight, dazzling power, 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: And We sent the she-camel to Thamud as a clear sign, but they did her wrong. Surah 17: 59 Also: And verily, the dwellers of Al-Hijr (the rocky tract) denied the Messengers. And We gave them Our Signs, but they were averse to them. Surah 15: 80-81
Stories About the She-camel
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
The Disbelievers’ Hatred for Salih
At first, the people of Thamud were greatly surprised when the she-camel issued from the mountain rocks. It was a blessed camel, 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 it 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 disbelievers, and they secretly plotted against it. Salih feared that they might kill the camel, so he warned them: “0 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.” Surah 11: 64 For a while, 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.
The disbelievers 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 Masra’i 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, Masrai 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.
Salih Warns of a Punishment
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 three 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 were 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 you not 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 disbelievers) quarreling with each other. He said: “0 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 ill 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.” Surah 27: 45-47
The Disbelievers Plot Against Salih
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 one 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 tellingthe truth.” Surah 27: 48-49
“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. And We saved those who believed, and used to fear and obey Allah. Surah 27: 50-53 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 disbelievers 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.
Salih’s Story – A Condensed Qur’anic Version
Allah the Exalted said: And to Thamud (people We sent) their brother Salih. He said: “0 my people! Worship Allah, you have no other Ilah (god) but Him (none has the right to be worshiped 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 seize you. And 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: “0 Salih! Bring about your threats if you are indeed one of the Messengers (of Allah).” So the earthquake seized them, and they lay (dead), prostrate in their homes. Then he (Salih) turned from them, and said: “0 my people! I have indeed conveyed to you the Message of my Lord, and have given you good advice but you like not good advisers.” Surah 7: 73-79
All were destroyed before they realized what was happening. As for the people who believed in the message of Salih , they were saved because they had left the place.
Hadith About People of Thamud
Ibn Umar narrated that while the Prophet Muhammad 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 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 not enter upon them.”
THE BEST OF WHAT THE PROPHETS (PEACE BE UPON THEM ALL) HAVE SAID
By Sa’d ibn Terab Alee
Bismillaahi-walhamdulilaahi was-salaatu was-salaamu ‘ala rasoolulillaah, wa ‘ala aalihi wa sahbihi ajma’een – ‘amma ba’d:
Know, may Allaah (Subhanahu wa ta’ala) guide you to His obedience, that He has made the kalimatul-ikhlaas (words of sincerity): Laa ilaaha illah Allaah a saviour for all those who utter it truthfully.
It is a source of safety in this world and the aakhirah – from the darkness in the grave, the terror of the Gathering (al-hashr) and from eternal damnation in the Pit of Hell.
The Prophet of Allaah (Salla ’Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said: “I am commanded to fight the people until they say: Laa ilaaha illah Allaah. When they say it, their blood and property would be safe from me except rightfully.” [Al-Bukhaaree]
And he (Salla ’Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) also said: “Indeed Allaah has forbidden for Hell the person who says: ‘Laa ilaaha illa Allaah,’ seeking thereby the Face of Allaah.” [Agreed Upon]
This laa ilaaha illa Allaah is the dividing line between eemaan (belief) and kufr (disbelief) and the price for the Gardens of Paradise. It is the best of what the Prophets have said and due to it the Scales, the Registers, Paradise and Hell were all set up. Swords are drawn to establish it and about it everyone will be questioned.
These weighty words are testified to by all those who claim to be Muslims. Sadly though, very few Muslims have a clear and correct understanding of what these words actually mean and entail. Furthermore, there are those who do actions and hold beliefs that contradict this kalimah whilst they repeat it many times each day!
Many have this great misunderstanding that they will be granted Paradise due to just saying this shahadah. They think this even though the hypocrites used to say it quite often but were given tidings of the lowest part of Hell by Allaah.
So we must know that although ‘Laa ilaaha illa Allaah is the key to Paradise – that key will only function if it has the right ‘ridges’ or ‘the meeting of certain requirements’ along with its utterance.
So know that the kalimah has two pillars and seven conditions. The pillars are:
(1) Denial (nafee): The first part Laa ilaaha (lit. there is no ilaah) denies the attribute of divinity to anyone and anything other than Allaah. Anything of the creation be it a Prophet or a pebble – regardless of its rank is not divine and thus no act of worship is to be directed to it. So the denial here is not a denial of the existence of the alleged gods, but rather a denial of the divinity which is attributed to them.
We understand here that the word ilaah in the first part of the testimony means ‘object of worship’. To understand it to mean Rubb (Creator, Sustainer and Regulator) rendering the testimony to mean ‘There is no Rubb (or Lord) except Allaah’ is not correct. Although it is essential that the true ilaah be capable of Creating, Sustaining and Regulating it certainly does not mean that whoever holds ilaah to mean Rubb only, has entered into Islaam.
This vital understanding of ilaah is proven by the fact that the mushrikun (polytheists) at the time of the Prophet (Salla ’Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) believed in the existence of Allaah and affirmed His Lordship (rububiyyah) however this did not enter them into Islaam. Allaah (Subhanahu wa ta’ala) instructs the Prophet to say to them: “Say (O Muhammad (Salla ’Llahu ‘alayhi wa sallam): ‘Who provides for you from the sky and the earth? Or who owns hearing and sight? And who brings out the living from the dead and brings out the dead from the living? And who disposes the affairs?’ They will say: ‘Allaah.’ Say: ‘Will you not then be afraid of Allaah’s punishment (for setting up rivals in worship with Him)?’.” [Surah Yunus (10):31]
From this ayah it is crystal clear that the polytheists believed in Allaah and affirmed His Rububiyyah. However, because they did not worship Him alone, Allaah classed them as disbelievers. They knew that accepting the shahadah meant directing all their worship only to Allaah (Subhanahu wa ta’ala), thus they rejected it.
In fact, even the whisperer of evil – Shaytaan affirms the Existence and Lordship of Allaah as He (Subhanahu wa ta’ala) quotes him as saying: “0 my Lord, because you left me to stray.” [Soorah Al-Hijr (15):39]
(2) Affirmation (Ithbaat): The second part illa Allaah (except Allaah) affirms and restricts divinity to Allaah (Subhanahu wa ta’ala) alone.
So the meaning of the shahadah is: “None has the right to be worshipped except Allaah.” That is, the slave must believe that Allaah is the only true God, thus logically single Him out for worship and completely abstain from dedicating any act of worship to other than Him. The seven conditions deduced from the Qur’aan and Sunnah which are pertinent to understanding the kalimah and to which the Muslim must adhere to until he dies are:
(1) Knowledge (al-’ilm): One must have the basic knowledge of what is meant by the testimony – what it is affirming and denying. He must know about what he is testifying or he will be like someone who speaks in a language that he does not understand.
(2) Certainty (al-yaqeen): The heart, must be absolutely certain and unwavering of the truth of the shahadah which leads to repelling any doubt or suspicion about it.
(3) Sincerity (al-ikhlaas): One must become and remain Muslim solely for Allaah’s sake which is contrary to shirk.
(4) Truthfulness (as-sidq): Saying the shahadah honestly, unlike the hypocrites who uttered it, but did not inwardly believe in it
(5) Love (al-mahabbah): One must love the shahadah, its implications, requirements and all those who act and strive for it.
(6) Submission (al-inqiyaad): This implies the actual physical enactment of the testimony with deeds. The shahadah must be implemented in the heart (love, fear and hope in Allaah), tongue (testifying to the shahadah) and by bodily actions.
(7) Acceptance (al-qabool): One must unconditionally accept with the tongue and heart and not reject the implications of the testimony.
Whatever else is worshipped besides Allaah (Subhanahu wa ta’ala) is a false deity and requires that one denies and rejects it. This is why many of the commands to worship Allaah (Subhanahu wa ta’ala) are also accompanied by a command to negate worship along with Him. This is because worship is false if others are worshipped along with Allaah as He (Subhanahu wa ta’ala) says: “Worship Allaah alone, and do not associate anything else as partners with Him.” [Soorah An-Nisa (4): 36]