Friday Sermon – Men of Excellence: Hazrat Abu Bakr r.a. (4 February 2022)


Friday Sermon

4 February 2022

Men of Excellence: Hazrat Abu Bakrra

Mubarak Mosque

After reciting the tashahhudta‘awuz and Surah al-Fatihah, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa said:

Currently, incidents in the life of Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiqra are being narrated; among which there were incidents related to battles. One such expedition was the Battle of Banu Quraizah. Al-Waqidi has mentioned the names of the individuals who participated in the Battle of Banu Qurayza and according to this list, Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiqra and Hazrat Talhah bin Ubaidillahra participated in the Battle of Banu Qurayza from the tribe of Banu Taym. (Al-Waqidi, Kitab al-Tarikh wa al-Maghazi, Vol. 2, Ghazwat Bani Quraizah [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2013], p. 4)

Abdur Rahman bin Ghanam relates, 

“When the Holy Prophetsa set off towards the Banu Qurayza, Hazrat Abu Bakrra and Hazrat ‘Umarra submitted to the Holy Prophetsa, ‘O Messengersa of Allah! If people see you dressed in a beautiful worldly garment, they will be more inclined towards accepting Islam. Hence, you should wear the garment that Hazrat Sa‘d bin ‘Ubadahra gave to you. You should wear this so that the disbelievers may see you dressed in a beautiful garment.’ The Holy Prophetsa replied, ‘I will do so. By Allah, if both of you agree on a matter, I will not oppose your advice. Moreover, my Lord has mentioned your examples to me in the same manner that he mentioned the examples of angels Gabriel and Michael. As far as Ibn Khattab is concerned, from among the angels, his example is like that of the angel Gabriel. Allah has destroyed the people among every nation through Gabriel, and from among the prophets, his example is like that of Prophet Noahas, when he said: 

رَّبِّ‭ ‬لَا‭ ‬تَذَرۡ‭ ‬عَلَى‭ ‬الۡأَرۡضِ‭ ‬مِنَ‭ ‬الۡكٰفِرِينَ‭ ‬دَيَّارًا

“My Lord, leave not on the land a single dweller of the disbelievers.” [Surah Nuh, Ch.71: V.27] 

And from among the angels, the example of Ibn Abi Quhafah (i.e. Hazrat Abu Bakrra) is like that of the angel Michael, in that he seeks forgiveness for the people on earth and from among the prophets, his example is like that of Prophet Abrahamas, who said: 

فَمَنۡ تَبِعَنِیۡ فَاِنَّہٗ مِنِّیۡ ۚ وَمَنۡ عَصَانِیۡ فَاِنَّکَ غَفُوۡرٌ رَّحِیۡمٌ

“So whoever follows me, he is certainly of me; and whoever disobeys me — Thou art, surely, Most Forgiving, Merciful.” [Surah Ibrahim, Ch.14: V.37] 

The Holy Prophetsa further said, ‘If both of you agree on a certain matter, then I will not oppose your advice. The manner in which you advise is of different types and can be likened to the examples of Gabriel, Michael, Noahas and Abrahamas.’” (Kanz al-‘Ummal, Vol. 7, p. 10, Kitab al-Fada’il, Bab Fada’il al-Sahabah, Hadith 360132, Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2004)

There is a narration in relation to when the Holy Prophetsa had besieged the Banu Quraizah. It is mentioned that ‘Aisha bint Sa’d relates from her father who said, “The Holy Prophetsa said to me, ‘O Sa‘d! Advance and shoot arrows at these people.’ I advanced ahead whereby they came in reach of my arrows. I had more than fifty arrows, which I shot in a matter of moments. It was as if our arrows were like a swarm of locusts. They fled inside and none of them peaked out. We became fearful regarding our arrows, lest they would all run out. Hence, we would shoot some of the arrows and keep some with us.”

Hazrat Ka‘b bin Amr Ma‘zanira was among the archers as well. He relates, “On that day, I shot all the arrows that were in my quiver, to the extent that some part of the night passed by, at which point we stopped firing arrows at them.” He continues to say, “We had shot our arrows while the Holy Prophetsa was mounted on his horse. He was in his armour and other horse riders were around him. Then, when the Holy Prophetsa permitted us, we returned to our resting grounds for the night. For food, we had dates sent by Hazrat Sa‘d bin Ubadahra, which were plentiful. We got by on those dates for the night. It was observed that the Holy Prophetsa, Hazrat Abu Bakrra and Hazrat ‘Umarra were also eating those dates. The Holy Prophetsa would say, ‘How excellent are dates for food.’” (Al-Waqidi, Kitab al-Tarikh wa al-Maghazi, Vol. 2, Ghazwat Bani Quraizah [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2013], p. 6)

When Hazrat Sa‘d bin Ma’azra gave his verdict for the fate of Banu Quraizah, the Holy Prophetsa praised him and said, “You have given a verdict according to the command of Allah.” Upon this, Hazrat Sa‘dra prayed, “O Allah, if it is Your decree that the Holy Prophetsa will have to fight another war against the Quraish, then keep me alive for it. However, if it is Your decree that the wars between the Holy Prophetsa and the Quraish have ceased, then take my life.” 

Hazrat ‘Aishara narrates, “Hazrat Sa‘ds wound opened, even though he had completely healed and only a small mark of that wound remained. He then returned to the tent that the Holy Prophetsa arranged for him.” Hazrat ‘Aishara continues, “The Holy Prophetsa, Hazrat Abu Bakrra and Hazrat ‘Umarra came to him. I swear by Him in Whose possession is the life of Muhammadsa that I could hear and distinguish the sound of Hazrat Abu Bakr’sra and Hazrat Umar’sra cries, despite being in my separate tent (in other words, when Hazrat Sa‘dra was breathing his last, both of them were crying). I was in my tent, and their condition was such that has been mentioned by Allah the Almighty in the following words 

‮ ‬رُحَمَآءُ‭ ‬بَيۡنَهُمۡ

In other words, “they are tender among themselves.” [Surah al-Fath, Ch.48: V30] (Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Vol. 8, Musnad ‘Aisha, Hadith 25610 [Beirut, Lebanon: ‘Alam al-Kutub, 1998], pp. 256-259)

In reference to the Treaty of Hudaibiyah, it is recorded – and as mentioned in previous sermons – that the Holy Prophetsa saw a dream in which he and his companions were performing circuits of the Holy Ka‘bah. On the basis of this dream, the Holy Prophetsa, along with a party of 1,400 companions, set forth from Madinah to perform Umrah. He set out early in the morning at the beginning of Dhu Al-Qa‘dah, 6 AH. (Sirat Khatamun-Nabiyyin, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra, pp. 749-750)

When the Holy Prophetsa realised that the Quraish were preparing to prevent him from entering into Mecca, the Holy Prophetsa sought the counsel of his companions. Hazrat Abu Bakrra humbly submitted, “O Messengersa of Allah! We have only come to perform Umrah. We have not come to engage in a battle with anyone. My suggestion is that we continue on our route to our destination, and if anyone hinders our path to the Holy Ka‘bah, then we will fight against them.” (Mustafa ‘Abd al-Wahid, Subul al-Huda wa al-Rashad fi Sirat Khair al-‘Ibad, Vol. 5 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], p. 37)

On the occasion of the Treaty of Hudaibiyah, when negotiations with representatives of the Quraish began, Urwah came to the Holy Prophetsa and said, “O Muhammad[sa], tell me, if you are intending to destroy your own people, do you know of anyone else before you amongst the Arabs who destroyed their own? If the second instance comes to pass (in other words, if the Quraish are victorious), then by God, I see the faces of your companions who have gathered from here and there, they will run away and leave you.” Upon hearing this, Hazrat Abu Bakrra addressed Urwah bin Mas‘ud and said sternly, “Go back from here and kiss your idol Lat.” (That is to say, go and continue worshipping it) Upon this, Urwah asked, “Who was that?” The people told him that it was Hazrat Abu Bakrra. Urwah replied, “By Him in Whose hands is my life if I was not indebted to you owing to your favour upon me, I would have surely responded to you.” Hazrat Abu Bakrra once assisted Urwah by giving him 10 pregnant she-camels when he had to pay blood money in some matter. Nonetheless, this is what Urwah said and then continued discussing terms with the Holy Prophetsa

During the occasion of the Treaty of Hudaibiyah, a pact was being drawn up between the Holy Prophetsa and the Quraish. Hazrat ‘Umarra states, “I went to the Holy Prophetsa and asked, ‘In reality, are you not the Prophet of Allah?’ He replied, ‘Yes’. I then asked, ‘Do we not stand on the truth and does our enemy not stand on falsehood?’ The Holy Prophetsa answered, ‘Yes’. I asked, ‘Then why should we accept such humiliating conditions with regards to our religion?’ The Holy Prophetsa then stated, ‘I am the Messenger of Allah, and I shall not disobey Him. He shall grant me His help (that is to say, if I accept these conditions I am not disobeying the command of Allah the Almighty and He shall help me).’ I (i.e. Hazrat ‘Umarra) then asked, ‘Did you not say that we shall soon reach the House of Allah and perform the circuit around it?’ The Holy Prophetsa said, ‘Indeed, I did say so, but did I say that we shall reach the House of Allah this year?’” The Holy Prophetsa told him, “I did not say that we would certainly reach the House of Allah this year.”

Hazrat ‘Umarra states, “I replied, ‘No’. The Holy Prophetsa stated, ‘You shall most certainly reach the House of Allah and perform the circuits around it.’ Having heard this, I went to Hazrat Abu Bakrra and said to him, ‘O Abu Bakr, is the Holy Prophetsa not truly the prophet of Allah?’ He replied, ‘Yes, of course.’ I then asked, ‘Do we not stand on the truth and our enemy on falsehood?’ He replied, ‘Yes, of course.’ I asked, ‘Then why should we accept such humiliating conditions with regards to our religion?’ Hazrat Abu Bakrra then said, ‘O servant of God! Indeed, the Holy Prophetsa is the Messenger of Allah. Messengers do not disobey the commands of their Lord, and Allah shall most certainly help him (he repeated almost the same words which the Holy Prophetsa said).’” 

Hazrat Abu Bakrra then said to Hazrat ‘Umarra, “Adhere firmly to the pact of the Holy Prophetsa, by Allah, the Prophet is truthful.” 

[Hazrat ‘Umarra states,] “I then asked, ‘Did the Holy Prophetsa not used to tell us that we shall indeed reach the House of Allah and perform the circuits around it?’ Hazrat Abu Bakrra answered, ‘Of course. But did the Holy Prophetsa mention that we shall reach this very year?’ I answered, ‘No’. Upon this Hazrat Abu Bakrra said, ‘You shall certainly reach there and perform the circuits around it.’”

The narrator Zuhri relates that Hazrat ‘Umarra would say, “I have carried out a number of good deeds as an expiation for this one mistake.” This has been taken from Sahih al-Bukhari. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitab al-Shurut, Bab al-Shurut fi al-Jihad…, Hadith 2731-27312) (Badr al-Din Mahmud Ibn Ahmad Aini, ‘Umdat al-Qari, Vol. 14 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar Ihya’ al-Turath al-‘Arabi, 2003], p. 16)

Whilst mentioning the details of the Treaty of Hudaibiyah, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra writes, 

“Urwah presented himself before the Holy Prophetsa and began to have a discussion with him. The Holy Prophetsa reiterated the same address which he had previously given to Budail bin Warqa. In principle, Urwah was at accord with the viewpoint of the Holy Prophetsa, but in order to fulfil his duty as an ambassador of the Quraish and in order to secure as many rights as possible in favour of the Quraish, he began to say, ‘O Muhammad[sa], in this war, if you annihilate your people, then have you ever heard the name of any man among the Arabs who has committed such cruelty before you? If, however, the matter goes the other way, i.e., the Quraish become dominant, then by God, I see such faces around you, who shall not take long to flee. For all of them shall leave you.’  Upon hearing this, Hazrat Abu Bakrra, who was sitting next to the Holy Prophetsa became furious and said, ‘Be gone, and go and kiss your idol, Lat. Do you say that we shall abandon the Messenger of God?’

Lat was a famous idol of the tribe Banu Thaqif, and the intent of Hazrat Abu Bakrra was to express ‘You are such people who worship idols and we are ones to worship God. Is it possible that while you show patience and steadfastness for the sake of idols, we who believe in God should be ones to abandon the Messengersa of God?’

Urwah asked in an outrage, ‘Who is this person who interrupts me?’ The people said, ‘This is Abu Bakrra.’ Upon hearing the name of Abu Bakrra, Urwah lowered his gaze in shame and said, ‘O Abu Bakr! By god, were it not for the favour you did upon me, (it is mentioned that at one occasion, Urwah was pressed by a heavy debt, and Hazrat Abu Bakrra paid off this debt and saved him). Upon this statement, I surely would have told you, how best to retort.’” (Sirat Khatamun-Nabiyyin, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra, pp. 756, 757)

It is recorded in a narration from Bukhari that on the occasion of the Treaty of Hudaibiyah, a treaty was being formed between the Holy Prophetsa and the Quraish and the conditions had been settled. At that time, Hazrat Abu Jandalra, son of Suhail bin Amr came staggering whilst still shackled in chains. Suhail bin Amr, who had come as an ambassador of Mecca, demanded that he be returned, upon which the Holy Prophetsa returned him to the Quraish. (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitab al-Shurut, Bab al-Shurut fi al-Jihad, Hadith 2731-27312)

Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra details this incident, which also includes mention of Hazrat Umar’sra discussion with the Holy Prophetsa in which he asked that if he was a true prophet of Allah the Almighty, then why should they have to lower themselves in this manner – i.e. Hazrat ‘Umarra spoke in this way because he felt that Abu Jandal was being treated unjustly. [Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra writes:] 

“The Muslims were witnessing this scene (of the injustice with Abu Jandal) and in religious indignation, their eyes became gorged with rage, but out of respect, they remained silent before the Holy Prophetsa. Finally, Hazrat ‘Umarra could bear it no more. He came to the Holy Prophetsa and inquired in a trembling voice, ‘Are you not the truthful Messenger of Allah?’ The Holy Prophetsa said, ‘Yes, indeed I am.’ ‘Umar responded, ‘Are we not upon the truth and our enemy upon falsehood?’ The Holy Prophetsa responded, ‘Yes, indeed it is so.’ ‘Umar said, ‘Why then should we bear this humiliation in the matter of our true religion?’ Upon seeing this state of Hazrat ‘Umarra, the Holy Prophetsa concisely said, ‘Look hither Umar! I am the Messenger of God. I understand the will of God and I cannot act against it and it is He who shall be my Helper.’ But the indignation in the mood of Hazrat ‘Umarra was growing, moment by moment. He began to say, ‘Did you not say that we would perform Ṭawaf [circuits] around the Ka‘bah?’ The Holy Prophetsa said, ‘Yes, indeed I did, but did I also say that this Ṭawaf would definitely be this year?’ ‘Umarra said, ‘No, you did not.’ The Holy Prophetsa responded, ‘Then be patient. God-willing, you shall indeed enter Makkah and perform tawaf of the Ka‘bah.’

However, in this emotional state, Hazrat ‘Umarra was not satisfied. Nonetheless, due to the extraordinary awe of the Holy Prophetsa, Hazrat ‘Umarra left and came to Hazrat Abu Bakrra. In his emotional state, he asked the same question again, and Hazrat Abu Bakrra also responded in the same way as the Holy Prophetsa. However, Hazrat Abu Bakrra also advised him, ‘O Umar, look hither! Control yourself. Do not allow for your grip to loosen from the rope of Allah’s Messenger. By God, this man, in whose hand we have given our own is without a doubt, truthful.’ Hazrat ‘Umarra said that at the time because of his emotional state he said such things, but later he felt exceedingly repentant. Moreover, in order to wash away the effects of this weakness as a form of repentance, he performed many voluntary acts as an expiation. In other words, he gave charity, fasted, offered voluntary Salat and even freed numerous slaves, so that this blemish of weakness could be cleansed.” (Sirat Khatamun-Nabiyyin, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra, pp. 767-768)

Whilst mentioning the incidents surrounding the Treaty of Hudaibiyah, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra states,

“When the disbelievers of Mecca learned that the Holy Prophetsa had set out to perform Tawaf of the Ka‘bah, they sent a chief to him in order to tell him that he could not perform Tawaf that year. The chief reached the Holy Prophetsa and began conversing with him. In the midst of the conversation, he touched the Holy Prophet’ssa blessed beard and asked him not to perform Tawaf that year, and postpone his plans for another year.” 

Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra continues, 

“It is common practice among the people of Asia to touch the beard of a person whom they wish to convince of a matter as a plea, or they touch their own beard to say ‘Look here, I am an elder and a leader of my people, therefore accept what I am saying.’ Hence, the chief touched the beard of the Holy Prophetsa as an appeal. Seeing this, a companion stepped forward and struck his hand with the handle of his sword, saying to the chief, ‘move your impure hands’. The chief recognised the person who struck him with the handle of his sword and said, ‘Are you not the same person for whom I did a favour on such and such occasion?’ Hearing this, the companion fell silent and moved away. Again, as an entreaty, the chief touched the Holy Prophet’ssa beard. The companions said that it enraged them to see the chief touch the Holy Prophet’ssa beard in such a manner, however, there was none among them for whom this chief had not done some sort of favour. At that time, their hearts desired to find someone whom the chief had not favoured. In the meantime, one of them stepped forward, who was clad in armour from head to toe, and he passionately addressed the chief, saying, ‘remove your impure hand.’ The person who said this was Hazrat Abu Bakrra. When the chief recognised him, he said, ‘I cannot say anything to you, for I have no favour upon you.’” (Hindustani Uljhanon ka Asan Tareen Hal, Anwar al-‘Ulum, Vol. 18, p. 560)

In Dhul Qa‘dah 6 A.H, when the Treaty of Hudaibiyah was being written there were two copies made of the treaty, and various notable people from both sides signed their names on them as witnesses. From the side of the Muslims, the names of those who signed are: Hazrat Abu Bakrra, Hazrat ‘Umarra, Hazrat Uthmanra, Hazrat Abdur Rahman bin Aufra, Hazrat Sa‘d bin Abi Waqasra and Hazrat Abu Ubaidah bin Al-Jarrahra. This is taken from ‘The Life & Character of the Seal of Prophets’. (Sirat Khatamun-Nabiyyin, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra, p. 769)

Hazrat Abu Bakrra used to say that there was no greater victory in Islam than the Treaty of Hudaibiyah. (Mustafa ‘Abd al-Wahid, Subul al-Huda wa al-Rashad fi Sirat Khair al-‘Ibad, Vol. 5 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], p. 64)

Hazrat Abu Bakrra also took part in the expedition of Banu Fazarah. In this regard, it is recorded that this expedition took place in 6 AH. The Banu Fazarah resided in Najd and the Valley of Qura.  (Sayyid Fadl al-Rahman, Farhang-e-Sirat [Karachi, Pakistan: Zawwar Academy Publications, 2003], p. 64)

In Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra and Sirat Ibn Hisham it is recorded that this expedition was commanded by Hazrat Zaid bin Al-Harithahra. (Ibn Sa’d, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 2 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2017], 69.) (Ibn Hisham, Al-Sirah al-Nabawiyyah [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2001], p. 875)

However, according to narrations in Sahih Muslim and Sunan Abi Dawud, the Holy Prophetsa appointed Hazrat Abu Bakrra as the leader of this expedition. In a narration from Sahih Muslim, it is recorded on account of Iyas bin Salama whose father told him, “We fought against the Fazarah tribe and our leader was Hazrat Abu Bakrra. The Holy Prophetsa appointed him as our leader.” (Sahih Muslim, Kitab al-Jihad wa al-Siyar, Bab Tanfil wa Fida’ al-Muslimin bi al-Usara, Hadith 4573) (Sunan Abi Dawud, Kitab al-Jihad, Bab al-Rukhsah, Hadith 2697)

Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra has also mentioned this expedition, and states:

“Following this, the Holy Prophetsa dispatched an army of companions towards the Banu Fazarah under the command of Hazrat Abu Bakrra. At that time, this tribe was at war with the Muslims. Salamah bin Akwa‘ra, a famous archer and trained runner was also a part of this army. Salamah bin Akwa‘ra narrates that they reached close to the settlement of this tribe around the time of the morning Salat. When they had completed the Salat, Hazrat Abu Bakrra issued forth the command to attack. In fighting with the Fazarah tribe, they reached near their water well. Many of the idolatrous people were killed, after which they fled from the field of battle, and they imprisoned many men. Salamahra narrates that among the group of people that fled was a party of women and children, who were quickly moving towards a nearby mountain. He began to shoot arrows between the mountain and them, upon which this party became frightened and stopped and they imprisoned them. Among these prisoners was an elderly lady who had covered herself with a mantle of red skin. She also had her beautiful daughter with her. He surrounded these people and brought them before Hazrat Abu Bakrra, who entrusted this girl to his guardianship. When they later reached Madinah, the Holy Prophetsa took this girl from him and sent her to Makkah, and in lieu, he sought the freedom of a few Muslim prisoners who had been detained by the people of Makkah.” (Sirat Khatamun-Nabiyyin, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra, pp. 716-717)

With regards to the Battle of Khaybar, it is written that the Holy Prophetsa departed for Khaybar in the month of Muharram, 7 AH. Khaybar was an oasis situated 184 km north of Madinah. It has a series of hillocks composed of basalt rocks. The Jews had constructed many fortresses here and the ruins of some still exist today. The Muslims conquered these fortresses in the Battle of Khaybar. This area was very fertile and the largest central place for the Jews. The Holy Prophetsa appointed Siba‘‘bin Urfutah Ghifari as Amir of Madinah in his absence.  (Muhammad Ibn Jarir al-Tabari, Tarikh al-Tabari, Vol. 3, Dhikr al-Ahdath al-Ka’inah… [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Fikr, 2002], 144.) (Dr Shauqi Abu Khalil, Atlas Sirat Nabawisa, p. 330, Dar al-Salam) (Sayyid Fadl al-Rahman, Farhang-e-Sirat [Karachi, Pakistan: Zawwar Academy Publications, 2003], p. 117.)

The siege of the fortresses in Khaybar lasted more than 10 days. (Al-Mawahib al-Laduniyyah, Vol. 1, p. 517, Ghazwat Khaibar, Al-Maktabah al-Islami, 2004)

Hazrat Buraidahra narrates that the Holy Prophetsa would suffer from migraines and, as a result, would not come outside for a day or two. Thus, when the Holy Prophetsa reached Khaybar, he was suffering from a migraine, and so he did not come out before the people. “Dard Shaqiqah” is a migraine. The Holy Prophetsa sent Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiqra towards the fortress of Kutaibah. Hazrat Abu Bakrra took the flag of the Holy Prophetsa and launched a fierce attack against the enemy. A ferocious battle ensued. After the battle, he returned but they had not gained complete victory despite their utmost effort. Then the Holy Prophetsa sent Hazrat ‘Umarra; he also took the Holy Prophet’ssa flag and fought vigorously and even more fierce than before, but even he returned without having secured victory. (Mustafa ‘Abd al-Wahid, Subul al-Huda wa al-Rashad fi Sirat Khair al-‘Ibad, Vol. 5 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], p. 124)

In most books of [Islamic] history and biographies, it is mentioned that Hazrat Abu Bakrra and Hazrat ‘Umarra were made commanders of the army one after the other, however, they could not conquer the fortress. However, there is a book titled “Sayyiduna Siddiq-e-Akbar”, which was published in February 2010 in Lahore; the people assigned for research have written to me about it; in the book, the author claims that the fortress was conquered by Hazrat Abu Bakrra, but he did not give a reference for it. Nonetheless, the author says that Hazrat Abu Bakrra was appointed as commander-in-chief of the army to conquer one fort, and he succeeded, and then Hazrat ‘Umarra was assigned to conquer a fort and he also succeeded. A third fort was assigned to Muhammad bin Maslamahra, but he could not succeed in conquering it. The Holy Prophetsa then said: “Tomorrow I will appoint the commander-in-chief and hand the flag to the one who is dear to Allah and His Messengersa, and he will conquer the fortress.” The Holy Prophetsa gave the flag to Hazrat Alira and he conquered the Qamus fort. (Al-Hajj Hakim Ghulam Nabi MA, Sayyiduna Siddiq-e-Akbar [Lahore, Pakistan: Abdiyat], p. 49) 

There is a narration of Al-Waqidi [the historian] regarding the Battle of Khaybar, as people read history written by him, therefore I will mention it, but it is not necessary that everything is absolutely correct. Nonetheless, he writes, 

“During the Battle of Khaybar, a companion, Hazrat Habbab bin Mundhirra said to the Holy Prophetsa, ‘O Messengersa of Allah! The Jews hold their date palm trees dearer to them than their own children, you should cut down those trees.’ Upon this, the Holy Prophetsa ordered for the trees to be cut down and the Muslims rushed to cut down the trees.” This incident up to here does not seem to be completely accurate, however, the next part seems to be correct. He writes, “Upon this, Hazrat Abu Bakrra went to the Holy Prophetsa and said: ‘O Messenger of Allah! Undoubtedly, Allah the Exalted, has promised victory to you at Khaybar, and He will fulfil His promise to you. Do not cut the trees.’ Upon this, the Holy Prophetsa ordered for them to stop cutting the trees and a crier made this announcement.” (Al-Waqidi, Kitab al-Tarikh wa al-Maghazi, Vol. 2, Bab Ghazwat Khaibar [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2004], p. 120)

When Allah the Almighty granted the Holy Prophetsa victory in Khaybar, he distributed a special valley called Kutaibah between his relatives, the women of his family and also amongst the Muslim men and women. On this occasion, aside from his other relatives, the Holy Prophetsa gave 100 Wasaq of grain and dates to Hazrat Abu Bakrra. (Ibn Hisham, Al-Sirah al-Nabawiyyah, Dhikr Maqasim Khaibar wa Amwaliha [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2001], p. 707)

One wasaq is equal to 60 Sa‘a and one Sa‘a is approximately 2.5 kg. (Lughat al-Hadith, Vol. 4, p. 487, Vol. 2, p. 648)

And so, approximately 375 maund [unit of measurement in the subcontinent, where 1 maund is equal to almost 40kg] was given to Hazrat Abu Bakrra.

With regards to Hazrat Abu Bakr being sent on an expedition towards Najd, it is written that Najd was a fertile region in the desert. It contains many mountains and valleys, to the south of it was Yemen, and to the north was the Syrian Desert and Iraq. To the west lies the Hijaz desert. This area was 1200 meters above sea level and owing to this elevation, this area became known as Najd. (Sayyid Fadl al-Rahman, Farhang-e-Sirat [Karachi, Pakistan: Zawwar Academy Publications, 2003], p. 297)

In Najd, the Banu Kilab began preparing against the Muslims and so the Holy Prophetsa sent Hazrat Abu Bakrra in order to quash this threat. This expedition took place in Sha‘ban, 7 AH.

Hazrat Salamah bin Akwa narrates that the Holy Prophetsa sent Hazrat Abu Bakrra and appointed him the commander over them. (Mustafa ‘Abd al-Wahid, Subul al-Huda wa al-Rashad fi Sirat Khair al-‘Ibad, Vol. 6, Sariyah Abi Bakr Ila Bani Kilab bi Najd [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], p. 131)

After the Treaty of Hudaibiyah, when Abu Sufyan returned to Mecca, it is written that the Banu Bakr, who were allies of the Quraish, attacked the Banu Khuza‘ah, who were allies of the Muslims and this was against the conditions of the Treaty of Hudaibiyah. Completely disregarding the conditions of the treaty, the Quraish assisted the Banu Bakr with weapons and mounts. They said with great pride and arrogance that they did not recognise any treaty. Upon this, Abu Sufyan came to Madinah and wished to renew the terms of the treaty. He went to see the Holy Prophetsa, but the Holy Prophetsa did not respond to anything he said. Abu Sufyan then went to Hazrat Abu Bakrra and asked him to speak to the Holy Prophetsa, however, he refused, saying: “I will not do such a thing.” Subsequently, as was mentioned in the accounts of Hazrat ‘Umarra, Abu Sufyan went to Hazrat ‘Umarra, but he also refused, and he returned unsuccessfully. (Ibn Hisham, Al-Sirah al-Nabawiyyah [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2001], 734-735.) (Sharh al-Zurqani ‘ala al-Mawahib al-Laduniyyah, Vol. 3 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1996], pp. 379-380)

The conquest of Mecca, which is also known as Ghazwah al-Fath Al-Azam, took place in Ramadan 8 AH. (Sharh al-Zurqani ‘ala al-Mawahib al-Laduniyyah, Vol. 3 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1996], p. 386)

In Tarikh al-Tabari it is written that when the Holy Prophetsa ordered the people to begin preparations, he told his family to make provisions for him. Hazrat Abu Bakrra went to his daughter, Hazrat ‘Aishara, and at the time she was making provisions for the Holy Prophetsa. Hazrat Abu Bakrra asked, “O my daughter! Has the Messengersa of Allah ordered you to make provisions?” To this, she replied in the affirmative. He asked her, “Where do you think the Holy Prophetsa is intending to go?” Hazrat ‘Aishara replied, “I do not know at all.” Then the Holy Prophetsa informed the people that they were heading towards Mecca and that they ought to make preparations immediately. He then prayed, “O Allah! May You keep the spies and informants of the Quraysh heedless of this to the extent whereby we reach their area without them knowing. Upon this, the people began preparations. (Muhammad Ibn Jarir al-Tabari, Tarikh al-Tabari, Vol. 3, Dhikr al-Khabr ‘an Fath Makkah [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Fikr, 2002], p. 166)

Elaborating further upon this incident, it is written in Sirat al-Halabiyyah:

“Whilst Hazrat Abu Bakrra was enquiring from Hazrat ‘Aishara, the Holy Prophetsa arrived. Hazrat Abu Bakrra asked the Holy Prophetsa, ‘O Messengersa of Allah! Are you intending to travel?’ The Holy Prophetsa replied in the affirmative. Upon this, Hazrat Abu Bakrra submitted, ‘Shall I also prepare?’ The Holy Prophetsa replied in the affirmative again. Hazrat Abu Bakrra enquired, ‘O Messengersa of Allah! Where are you intending to travel?’ The Holy Prophetsa stated, ‘to fight against the Quraish, but Abu Bakr keep this confidential.’ (He told him, but also said to keep this fact confidential) The Holy Prophetsa instructed the people to prepare, however, he did not disclose to them where he was going. Hazrat Abu Bakrra submitted, ‘O Messengersa of Allah! Does not the time period of the pact and treaty between us and the Quraish still remain?’ The Holy Prophetsa replied, ‘Yes, but they have dishonoured their treaty and broke it, but you must keep everything I have said to you confidential.’” 

In another narration, it states that Hazrat Abu Bakrra submitted, “O Messengersa of Allah! Do you intend to set out on a journey?” The Holy Prophetsa replied in the affirmative. Hazrat Abu Bakrra stated, “Perhaps you intend to travel towards the Banu Asfar (i.e. the Byzantines).” The Holy Prophetsa replied, “no”. Hazrat Abu Bakrra submitted, “Do you plan to travel towards Najd?” Again, the Holy Prophetsa stated, “no”. Hazrat Abu Bakrra submitted, “O Messengersa of Allah! Perhaps you intend to travel towards the Quraish?” The Holy Prophetsa replied in the affirmative. Hazrat Abu Bakrra submitted, “O Messengersa of Allah! The time period of the peace treaty established between you and them still remains.” The Holy Prophetsa stated, “Do you not know what they have done to the Banu Ka‘b, (i.e. the Banu Khuza‘ah).” Thereafter, the Holy Prophetsa sent a message to the neighbouring villages and Muslims and stated, “Whoever believes in Allah the Almighty and the Day of Judgment should gather in Madinah in the month of Ramadan.” Upon this instruction of the Holy Prophetsa various tribes of Arabia began to converge in Madinah. Amongst the tribes which arrived in Madinah were the Banu Aslam, Banu Ghaffar, Bannu Muzainah, Banu Ashja and Banu Juhainah. At the time, the Holy Prophetsa prayed, “O Allah! Stop the informants and spies of the Quraish, so that we can reach their areas without them knowing.” The Holy Prophetsa then stationed various parties along the entire way in order to gather information of anyone who passed by. The Holy Prophetsa instructed them that if any stranger passed by them, they should stop him and the Quraish should not learn of the preparations being made by the Muslims. (Ali bin Burhan al-Din al-Halabi,  Al-Sirah al-Halabiyyah, Vol. 3 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2002], pp. 107-108)

Whilst mentioning the details of this incident, Hazrat Musleh-e-Maudra states, 

“The Holy Prophetsa once addressed one of his wives and said, ‘Prepare my provisions for a journey.’ She began to make preparations for his travels. He then told Hazrat ‘Aishara to roast some seeds and grains for him. These were the kind of provisions typically available in those days. Thus, she began to sift out any dust or dirt from the seeds. Hazrat Abu Bakrra came to visit his daughter at home and saw these preparations and asked Hazrat ‘Aishara, ‘What is happening? Is the Holy Prophetsa preparing for a journey?’ She replied, ‘It seems to be so because the Holy Prophetsa told us to make preparations for travel.’ Hazrat Abu Bakrra enquired if there were plans for a battle, but she replied, ‘I do not know. The Holy Prophetsa just told us to prepare for travel and that is what we are doing.’ Two to three days later, the Holy Prophetsa called upon Hazrat Abu Bakrra and Hazrat ‘Umarra and told them that some men from the Khuza‘ah tribe came and related the details of an incident that took place. The Holy Prophetsa said, ‘God has informed me of the incident beforehand, that they would commit treason and we have made a covenant with them. It would go against our faith to now become fearful and not prepare for combat after witnessing the bravery and strength of the Meccans. We will have to go there, so what is your opinion on the matter?’ Hazrat Abu Bakrra submitted, ‘O Messengersa of Allah, you have entered into a covenant with them and they are your own people.’ In other words, would he fight against his own people?

The Holy Prophetsa said, ‘We will not fight our people, we will fight those who have violated the covenant.’ The Holy Prophetsa then asked Hazrat ‘Umarra, who submitted, ‘In Allah’s name, I would pray every day that we might see this day when we could fight the disbelievers in defence of the Holy Prophetsa.’

The Holy Prophetsa said, ‘Abu Bakr is very soft-natured, but Umar is more candid in his speech.’ The Holy Prophetsa continued, ‘Make preparations.’ Then, the Holy Prophetsa had an announcement made in the surrounding tribes that everyone who believes in Allah and His Messengersa should congregate in Madinah in the beginning days of Ramadan. Thus, they started to gather to the extent that an army enumerating many thousands of men were organised and they set out for war. When the Holy Prophetsa was about to depart, he stated, ‘O Allah! I supplicate to You that may You cause a covering upon the ears of the Meccans and upon the eyes of their spies, so that neither they will see us nor hear about us.’ Thereafter the Holy Prophetsa departed and despite the fact that there were many hypocrites in Madinah, and an army of 10,000 men had just departed, no news of this reached the people of Mecca. These indeed are the works of Allah the Almighty.” (Sair-e-Ruhani [7], Anwar al-Ulum, Vol. 24, pp. 260-262)

It is written in Al-Tabaqat by Ibn Sa‘d that the Muslim army reached Marr Al-Zahran at Isha [evening]. Marr Al-Zahran is 25 kilometres from Mecca in the direction of Madinah. In other words, it is 25 kilometres from Mecca. According to the instruction of the Holy Prophetsa, the companions lit a fire in 10,000 different places. Though the news of the Muslim army’s departure had not reached the Quraish, nonetheless they were worried on account of having to fight against the Muslims. Although they did not receive news, the Quraish thought that they would now have to fight, and this is why they were fearful. It seems here that it has been incorrectly written here. In fact, they had received news of their departure after they arrived there [Marr Al-Zahran]. When the Muslims set camp there and lit the fire in 10,000 different places, the Quraish sent Abu Sufyan to gather information. They stated that if he were to meet the Holy Prophetsa he should enter into a peace treaty. And so, Abu Sufyan bin Harb, Hakeem bin Hizam and Budail bin Waraqah left and when they saw the Muslim army, they became greatly worried. The Holy Prophetsa had appointed Hazrat ‘Umarra to oversee those standing guard that night. When Hazrat Abbasra heard the voice of Abu Sufyan, he stated, “O Abu Hanzla!” (This was the title of Abu Sufyan). Upon this, Abu Sufyan responded, “I am here.” He then asked Hazrat Abbas, “What is this behind you?” Hazrat Abbasra replied, “It is the Messengersa of Allah along with 10,000 of his people.” Hazrat Abbasra then granted him refuge and took him and his two companions before the Holy Prophetsa and all three accepted Islam. (Ibn Sa‘d, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 2, Ghazwat Rasulsa Allah ‘Aam al-Fath [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2017], pp. 102-103) (Atlas Sirat Nabawisa, p. 396, Maktabat Dar al-Salam)

This incident will continue to be mentioned in the future insha-Allah

(Official Urdu transcript published in Al Fazl International 25 February 2022, pp. 5-9. Translated by The Review of Religions.)

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