Prophet Muhammed

Summary

Allah has sent prophets to humanity, in different times and places, to communicate His message. They were human beings who taught the people around them about faith in One Almighty Allah, and how to walk on the path of righteousness. In essence, all prophets taught the message of Islam – to find peace in your life through submission to the One Almighty Creator; to believe in One and only Allah and to follow only His guidance.

Long ago Almighty Allah gave the honor of spreading His message to Prophet Ibrahim (asws) as well. Due to his obedience and sacrifice Ibrahim (asws) was rewarded by Allah for eternity with making the Prophethood only for his family, after his demise. After a long period, from the descendants of Prophet Ibrahim, the last of the prophets, the greatest of all mankind, rehmatul-lil’aalimeen, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) ibn Abdullah was born in the Arabian Peninsula, what is now known as Saudi Arabia in a city called Makkah in 570 C.E.

Purpose of sending Prophets

Allah has sent prophets to humanity, in different times and places, to communicate His message. They were human beings who taught the people around them about faith in One Almighty Allah, and how to walk on the path of righteousness. Some prophets also revealed Allah’s Word through books of revelation. All prophets gave guidance and instruction to their people about how to properly worship Allah (SWT) and live their lives. Since Allah (SWT) is One, His message has been one and the same throughout time. In essence, all prophets taught the message of Islam – to find peace in your life through submission to the One Almighty Creator; to believe in One and only Allah and to follow only His guidance.

Prophets mentioned in Quran

In Quran twenty-five (25) prophets are mentioned by their names. They are: (1) Adam, (2) Nuh, (3) Idris, (4) Saleh, (5) Ibrahim, (6) Hud, (7) Lut, (8) Yunus, (9) Isma’il, (10) Is-haq, (11) Ya’qub, (12) Yusuf, (13) Ayub, (14) Shu’aib, (15) Musa, (16) Harun, (17) Alyas’, (18) Dhu Al-Kifl, (19) Dawood, (20) Zakariya, (21) Sulaiman, (22) Ilyas, (23) Yahya, (24) Isa, and (25) Muhammad, prayers and salutations of Allah be upon him and upon all the messengers of Allah (SWT).

Prayers of Ibrahim (asws)

Long ago Almighty Allah gave the honor of spreading His message to Prophet Ibrahim (asws) as well. During his tireless efforts of spreading Islam in this world, the perseverance and matchless obedience was demonstrated by Prophet Ibrahim. Once he was thrown in the fire for not stopping the propagation of Allah’s message; and then he was ordered by Allah to abandon his family in a desolate and barren land (today’s Makkah); and the third major test when he was commanded to sacrifice his only son Ismail; has been mentioned in Quran at 2:124.


On this obedience Ibrahim was rewarded by Allah for eternity with making the Prophethood only for his family. All prophets of Allah were chosen from Ibrahim descendants, after his demise. His elder son’s (Ismail) descendants settled in Arab, and were known as Bani-Ismail. His younger son’s (Is’haaq) descendants were named Bani Israil, after his son Yaqoob, who was also known as Israil.


The people of Bani Ismail and Bani Israil, both followed Islam initially. With the time they gave up the teachings of their forefather and leader Prophet Ibrahim. The great prophets like Musa (Moses), Dawood (David), Sulaiman (Solomon), Esa (Jesus) (peace be upon them all), were among the descendants of Israil (Yaqoob). But Bani Israil went astray and became Jews and Christian.


On the other hand Bani Ismail (the Arabs) gave up Islam for paganism. All these three religious groups (Christians, Jews, pagan idol-worshippers) claimed ancestry to the prophet Ibrahim. However, the religion of Ibrahim was none of these three. His religion was truly that of Islam, a total submission to the will of Allah. This sad state of affairs of the world continued for nearly two and a half thousand years. But then after this long period, the time came for the supplication of Prophet Ibrahim to be answered.


“Our Lord! Send amongst them a Messenger of their own, who shall recite unto them your aayaat (verses) and instruct them in the book and the Wisdom and sanctify them. Verily you are the ‘Azeezul-Hakeem [the All-Mighty, the All-Wise].”(Surah Al-Baqarah 2:129)

Arrival of Rehmatul-lil’aalameen (pbuh)

Sure enough, from the descendants of Prophet Ibrahim, the last of the prophets, the greatest of all mankind, rehmatul-lil’aalimeen, Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) ibn Abdullah was born in the very city that Prophet Ibrahim had made the supplication centuries earlier.Muhammad (pbuh) was the main prophet of Islam. He was born in the Arabian Peninsula, what is now known as Saudi Arabia in a city called Makkah in 570 C.E. Makkah.


Muhammad (pbuh) was an orphan. His father, Abdullah, had died before Muhammad was born and his mother, Aminah, died while he was still very young. This was why Muhammad was brought-up first by his grandfather, Abdul Mutallib, and later by his uncle, Abu Talib. Both of them loved the orphaned Muhammad very much, and both devoted a lot of care to him. When he was big and strong enough to work, Muhammad tended sheep on the outskirts of Makkah, the town where he lived.


Muhammad was still a boy when he worked as a shepherd. Later, when he grew into a young man, Muhammad’s uncle, Abu Talib, used to take him along on his trading journeys. Makkans like Abu Talib were merchants and the journeys they made where very long. Their camels brought many different goods into Makkah. This was a very good and exciting experience for Muhammad and when he grew older he was able to lead the caravans on his own.


In Makkah there lived a wealthy widow whose name was Khadija. She owned trade caravans and employed Muhammad to lead them for her. Khadija had made a very wise choice, for Muhammad was a good honest tradesman and a very successful one. Later on, Muhammad and Khadija (ra) were married and settled down with their children to lead a happy and peaceful life in Makkah. At the time of marriage the Prophet was 25 years, while Khadija (ra) was 40 years old, and was twice widowed.


As the years passed and Muhammad grew older, he began to think deeply about many things. Although his own family life was very happy, several problems worried him. Muhammad often wandered by the mountains outside Makkah and here, in a cave known as Ghar-e-Hira. on the Mountain of Light (Jabal al-Nur), he used to sit and think in peace and solitude: I wonder how it happened that I, who was once an orphan, am now such a rich man, Muhammad thought, I have a good wife and loving children, and yet I am still not entirely happy.


Muhammad knew very well why this was so, for he had long been troubled by the situation that existed in Makkah: They don’t help the poor. They do not bother about caring for orphans or nursing the sick back to health. People in Makkah seem to be interested only in having a lot of money and when they have that, they want even more! These thoughts troubled Muhammad for many years.

Prophethood

One day, when he was forty years old, Muhammad (S.A.W.) was in the Ghar-e-Hira, an Angel appeared before him. The Angel, whose name was Gabriel (as), said to Muhammad (S.A.W.): “Read in the name of your Lord who has created everything, who has created man from a clot of blood.”


At once, Muhammad knew what this meant. He should go to Makkah and tell the people: Allah has created Man. Allah has created all the things that Man needs to live. Therefore Man should be grateful to Allah. He should pray only unto Allah and obey only Him. It is Allah’s will that the poor and the sick should be cared for, and that people should strive with all their might to do good and lead honourable lives. After death, such people will be richly rewarded for their efforts. But those who purposely do evil will receive terrible punishment, unless they are sincerely sorry for what they have done and ask Allah to forgive them.


At first, Prophet was very disturbed, for he had never seen an Angle before. But even so, he realized that the Angel had given him answers to the many questions which had been troubling him. For some time Prophet had been wondering who it was who had been helping him; now he knew: it was Allah. He wondered why the people of Makkah were greedy and mean to the poor; now he knew why: it was because they disobeyed Allah. Allah created Man and all that is in this world, so Man must be obedient to Allah alone.

When Prophet returned to the city, he told his wife Ummul Momineen Khadija (ra) all that had happened, and all the Angel Gabriel (as), had said. “Allah will never disgrace you,” Khadija (ra) told her husband, “for you do many good things. You keep families together. You bear the burden of the weak, you assist the poor and the needy, and you entertain the guests and endure hardships in the path of truthfulness.”

Spreading the Message

Prophet was very happy that his wife, like himself, believed and trusted in Allah. He began telling his friends of the Angle Gabriel (as), and what the Angel had said to him. At first, though, only a few people paid attention to what Prophet said. Most of them just ignored him, for they were far too busy making money, and had no time or inclination to think about Allah.


During this time, and afterwards, the Angel Gabriel (as), continued to appear before Prophet and always reminded him of the same thing. Prophet had been chosen as Allah’s Prophet, and it was his task to go and tell the people to do good and to worship no other god but Allah. Prophet must also tell them to spend their money on helping poor people who had too little money themselves.


At last, Prophet began approaching the people of Makkah. He chose beautiful words to tell them of Allah’s wishes, hoping that by this means, he would appeal to them: When you have enough to eat and there is a poor man who is hungry, then you must give him some of your food to eat and some of your clothing to wear. The sick must be nursed and the orphans must be cared for. If you do all these things, as Allah wishes, you will be rewarded. But if you refuse, warned, you will be punished very severely.


Unfortunately, most Makkans just laughed at what Prophet told them. Worse still, they refused to worship Allah and went on believing that it was more important to have a lot of money. Some of them even threw stones at the Prophet, and they killed some of those who followed him and believed in Allah alone. Their enmity grew and eventually the people of Makkah decided that Prophet, his family, his relatives and his friends, should be driven out of the town. So they sent them to a valley named Shaib Abi Talib in the mountains outside of Makkah, and nobody was allowed to visit them there or to bring them food. They had to stay in that desolate place for almost three years, and grew so hungry that often they ate the leaves of trees, since they did not have enough food. During this boycott, life there was so bad that before long, Khadija (ra), the Prophet’s wife, and uncle Abu Talib died. This year is remembered as Year of Sorrow. Prophet was very sad. These were the people, who have helped Prophet, until this boycott. After the death of Khadija (ra), the prophet married another elderly widow, Saudah (ra), to take care of his young daughters.

Migration to Madinah

Then the Angel Gabriel (asws) appeared and explained to Prophet that Allah wanted to help him. He should take his friends and family away from Makkah and take them to another town, called Madina. The people there were willing to listen to Allah’s words, the Angel told the Prophet.


So, the Prophet told his children and his friends to leave Makkah and go to Madinah. Then all who believed in Allah and worshipped only Allah, left Makkah. The last to leave were Prophet and his close companion, Abu Bakr (ra), who was also the first adult to accept Islam, after the Prophet’s wife Khadijah (ra). However, the people of Makkah wanted to kill him, because he had been warning them of their evil deeds. The Prophet however, was able to leave while the Makkans were on their way to kill him. Ali (ra), Prophet’s brave young cousin, who was the first child to accept Islam, laid himself on Prophet’s bed so that the Makkans would think that the Prophet was still there. But Prophet and Abu Bakr (ra), were long since gone on their way, and so that nobody could find them, they hid themselves in a cave, know as Cave Thur. When the Quraish discovered that it was Ali (ra), who was in Prophet’s bed and that the Prophet had gone, they became very angry. But there was nothing they could do, for Prophet was already well beyond their evil reach.


Madinah was completely different from Makkah. Here, Prophet had more friends than enemies. However, the people of Makkah did not leave him in peace. Instead, they followed him to Madinah, to make war with him. But Allah helped the Prophet and his followers, and kept them safe from their enemies. In Madinah, Prophet continued to receive Allah’s messages from the Angel Gabriel.


The Prophet and his friends built a mosque in Madinah and here they prayed five times every day. Once every year, they observed a month of fasting. During the days of this month, they did not eat or drink anything during the daytime. They trained themselves to go without food and drink, for the sake of Allah. From this experience, they learned to get used to eating very little food. So, they had a lot of food left over to give to the poor. They also gave the poor some of their money. Prophet and his friends believed in Allah and worshipped Him alone. They were obedient to Allah and followed His commands, therefore they are called Muslims. Those who believe in Allah, who worship Allah alone, and who do things according to the Quran, are Muslims. But those who do not believe in Allah and refuse to obey Him and even want to kill the Muslims by fighting wars against them are not Muslims. They are the disbelievers.


For many years, in Madinah, Prophet and his followers had to defend themselves against the attacks of their enemies, and many times were forced to fight against them. Famous battles like Badr, Uhud, Khandaq, Khyber and Hunayn took place, while the small community of Muslims were trying to establish at Madinah. But in these battles, Allah gave help to Prophet and the Muslims. After some time, the disbelievers began to understand that because of Allah’s help Prophet was much stronger than they were. So, at last, they said to themselves: We must stop fighting, for nobody is stronger than Allah. We cannot defeat Prophet, because Allah helps him. It is therefore better for us also to believe in Allah and to worship Him.


In the blessed month of Ramadan, 8 A.H., the Muslim army marched triumphantly into Makkah. It was a peaceful victory, with minimum casualties. Prophet and the Muslims were very happy that the long war had at last come to an end. Allah helped them as He had promised, and they were able to return to Makkah where they had once been the first small group of people who believed in Allah. When they arrived in Makkah, they held a prayer together. After that, some of them remained in Makkah, but others who had set up home in Madinah went back there. Nevertheless, these Muslims in Madinah journeyed to Makkah once a year, because the Ka’bah was there.

Prophet’s Children

Prophet and Khadija (ra) were the parents of six children – four daughters and two sons. His first son Qasim died at the age of two. The prophet was nicknamed Abul Qasim, meaning the father of Qasim. His second son Abdullah died in infancy. Abdullah was also called affectionately as ‘Tayyab’ and ‘Tahir’ because he was born after Prophet’s prophethood. The four daughters were: Zainab, Ruqayyah, Umm Kulthum, and Fatimah (ra).


The prophet has one son from his wife Mariah (ra), and the Prophet named him Ibrahim. He was the only child born after the six children from Prophet’s first wife Khadija. Ibrahim died when he was ten months old


Zainab (ra) married her cousin Al’Ass Ibn Al-Rabeah. Zainab had two children, named Umamah and Ali, who died in her childhood. Zainab died in 630 C.E. Ruqayyah (ra), was the wife of Uthman (ra), the third Caliph. She had one boy named Abdullah who died possibly from an infection at early age. She died in 624 C.E. She died on the same day of the battle of Badr. Umm Kulthum (ra), was also married to Uthman (ra), after Ruqayah’s death. She had no children. She died in 631 C.E.


Fatimah (ra), married Ali (ra), the fourth Caliph. They had two sons, Al-Hassan and Al-Hussein and one daughter Umm Kulthum. Fatimah died in 632 C.E. Hassan (ra), was seven years old, and Hussein (ra), was six when Prophet died in 632 C.E. The Prophet loved them very much. Al-Hassan died in 669 C.E. Most of Al-Hussein’s children were killed in the wars. Only two children survived after Al-Hussein’s death, in the battle of Karbellah, in 680 C.E. The descendants of Hussein (ra) still exist today.