28 January 2022
Men of Excellence: Hazrat Abu Bakrra
After reciting the tashahhud, ta‘awuz and Surah al-Fatihah, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa said:
Accounts from the life of Hazrat Abu Bakrra were being related and I will continue to narrate them today as well.
With regards to the Battle of Hamra al-Asad, it is written that the Holy Prophetsa returned from the [Battle of] Uhud on a Saturday. On Sunday, at the time of Fajr, Hazrat Bilalra gave the call for prayer and sat down, waiting for the Holy Prophetsa to come out. In the meantime, Hazrat Abdullah bin Amr bin Auf Muzani came looking for the Holy Prophetsa. When the Holy Prophetsa came out, Abdullah stood up and informed him that he was returning from his family, while he was in Malal, the Quraish had set up a camp there. Malal is the name of a place on the way to Mecca, located at a distance of 28 miles from Medina.
Furthermore, he said that he heard Abu Sufyan and his companions saying, “You all achieved nothing! You caused them harm (i.e. you harmed the Muslims) and you caused them pain, but then you left them and did not annihilate them.” The disbelievers responded, “There are still numerous prominent individuals among them (i.e. from among the Muslims), who will gather against you. Hence, let us return and destroy those individuals who are left behind.” Safwan bin Umayyah was sitting among the disbelievers and he stopped them from doing this and said, “Oh my people! You should refrain from doing this as they have already fought you and I fear that those who were previously unable to join the battle will now join them in order to fight you. You should return as victory is yours and I fear that if you return [to confront them], you will suffer defeat.”
Upon this, the Holy Prophetsa called for Hazrat Abu Bakrra and Hazrat Umarra and informed them of what this companion, Muzani had told him. In reply, both of them submitted, “O Messengersa of Allah! Let us advance towards the enemy so that they will not be able to attack our children!” When the Holy Prophetsa had completed the morning prayer, he gathered the people and said to Hazrat Bilalra to announce, “The Messnegersa of Allah is commanding you to advance towards the enemy and only those individuals should set out with us, who had joined us in battle the previous day (that is, only those who were present in the Battle of Uhud).”
The Holy Prophetsa asked for his flag, which had been tied up since the previous day and had not been opened again. The Holy Prophetsa handed this flag to Hazrat Alira. It is also recorded that the flag was given to Hazrat Abu Bakrra. (Mustafa ‘Abd al-Wahid, Subul al-Huda wa al-Rashad fi Sirat Khair al-‘Ibad, Vol. 4 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], pp. 308-309) (Yaqut Ibn ‘Abd Allah al-Hamawi, Mu‘jam al-Buldan, Vol. 5 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar Ihya al-Turath al-’Arabi], p. 225)
Nevertheless, when this convoy of Muslims reached Hamra al-Asad, which is located at a distance of eight miles from Medina, the idolaters became fearful and. abandoning the idea of going to Medina. they instead headed towards Mecca. (Muhammad al-Salabi, Sayyiduna Abu Bakr Siddiqra aur Karname [Pakistan: Maktabat al-Furqan], p. 113)
The battle of Banu Nazir took place in 4 AH. The Holy Prophetsa, accompanied by a small party of companions, went to the people of Banu Nazir. There are different narrations explaining why the Holy Prophetsa went to them. According to one narration, the Holy Prophetsa went to them to collect the blood money of two people who had been killed by the tribe of Banu Amir. Approximately 10 companions accompanied the Holy Prophetsa, including Hazrat Abu Bakrra, Hazrat Umarra and Hazrat Alira.
When the Holy Prophetsa arrived there and asked for the amount to be paid, the Jews said, “Yes, O Abu al-Qasim, first you should eat and then we will address the matter you have brought.”
At the time, the Holy Prophetsa was sitting against a wall. The Jews began to plot and conspire with one another, saying, “We will never get a better opportunity for killing this man [i.e. the Holy Prophetsa]. Who among us will climb to the top of this house and drop a heavy stone on him, so that we may get rid of him.” Upon this, Amr bin Jahash, a chieftain of the Jews, agreed to the plan and said, “I am ready for this task.” Following this, Salam bin Mishkam, who was another Jewish Chieftain, opposed the idea and said, “Under no circumstances should you carry out this act. By God, he (the Holy Prophetsa) will surely be informed of what you are plotting. This is an act of treason because we have made a treaty with them.”
When the man who was to drop the stone on the Holy Prophetsa reached the top [of the building], the Holy Prophetsa was divinely informed about this plot. Allah the Almighty informed him of what the Jews were planning to do. Right away, leaving his companions where they were seated, the Holy Prophetsa stood up and proceeded to depart, as though he had another engagement. Thereafter, he returned to Medina swiftly. After arriving in Medina, the Holy Prophetsa sent Hazrat Muhammad bin Maslamahra to Banu Nazir with a message stating, “Leave my city (i.e. Medina). You will not be permitted to live in my city. The plot you devised was an act of treason.”
The Holy Prophetsa gave the Jews a period of 10 days, but they refused and said they would never leave their homeland. On receiving this reply, the Muslims prepared for battle. When all the Muslims had gathered, the Holy Prophetsa departed to face Banu Nazir. The flag for this battle was held by Hazrat Alira. The Holy Prophetsa besieged their forts, and no one came for their aid. Then the Holy Prophetsa mobilised his forces against Banu Nazir, and in the evening, he returned to his home with 10 companions.
According to one narration, during that time, the Holy Prophetsa assigned the command of the Muslim army to Hazrat Alira, while according to another narration, this honour was given to Hazrat Abu Bakrra. On one end, the Holy Prophetsa carried out a strict siege, and on the other, Allah the Almighty caused the awe of the Muslims to settle in the hearts of the Jews. Finally, they requested the Holy Prophetsa to spare their lives and exile them with permission to take as much of their belongings as they could load onto their camels except for their weapons. The Holy Prophetsa accepted their request.
According to one narration, the Holy Prophetsa lay siege for 15 days, while some narrations differ in the number of days of this siege. (‘Ali bin Burhan al-Din al-Halabi, Al-Sirah al-Halabiyyah, Vol. 2, Bab Ghazwah Banu Nazir [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2002], pp. 357-361)
With the permission of the Ansar, the Holy Prophetsa distributed all the spoils of war acquired in the battle of Banu Nazir amongst the Muhajirin. Upon this, Hazrat Abu Bakrra addressed the Ansar and said, “O company of Ansar, may Allah grant you the best reward.”
(Mustafa ‘Abd al-Wahid, Subul al-Huda wa al-Rashad fi Sirat Khair al-‘Ibad, Vol. 4 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], p. 325)
An incident that took place in 4 AH. is the Battle of Badr al-Mau‘id. The cause of this expedition is that when Abu Sufyan bin al-Harb was departing from the Battle of Uhud he said out loud, “Next year we shall face one another again at Badr al-Safra and we shall fight there.” The Holy Prophetsa instructed Hazrat Umarra to reply, “yes indeed, God-Willing.” They all then parted thereafter. When the Quraish returned, they informed their people of this agreement.
Badr is a famous well between Mecca and Medina and situated between the valley of Safra and Jar. Badr is situated 150 km southwest of Medina. In the era of ignorance, a large festival used to take place on 1 Dhu al-Qa‘dah and lasted for eight days.
As the appointed time drew nearer, Abu Sufyan became less and less content to set out against the Holy Prophetsa and was fearful. He desired not to come up against the Holy Prophetsa at this appointed time. Abu Sufyan was making it seem as though he was preparing a great army to attack the Muslims and also so that this news would reach the people of Medina. Through means of this, he wanted this news to spread among the Arabs in order to strike fear into the Muslims. (Mustafa ‘Abd al-Wahid, Subul al-Huda wa al-Rashad fi Sirat Khair al-‘Ibad, Vol. 4 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], p. 337) (Shawqi Abu Khalil, Atlas Sirat Nabawisa [Darul Islam, 1424AH], p. 216)
According to one narration, Hazrat Abu Bakrra and Hazrat Umarra went to the Holy Prophetsa saying, “O Messengersa of Allah! Allah will make His religion prevail and grant honour to His Prophetsa. We have made a promise to the people and we desire not to break it, otherwise, they (i.e. the disbelievers) shall see it as a sign of cowardice. You must go ahead according to the agreement, for by God, there is good in this.” Hearing these sentiments, the Holy Prophetsa became overjoyed. When the Holy Prophetsa received this news regarding the army being assembled by Abu Sufyan, he appointed Hazrat Abdullahra bin Rawahah as the Amir of Medina in his absence.
According to another narration he appointed Abdullah bin Abdillah bin Ubayy bin Sulool as the amir, and gave his flag to Hazrat Alira as he set off with his companions towards Badr. Alongside him were 1,500 Muslims. One the way, the Muslims took part in some trade at the festival that was taking place and made quite some profit from their business. After remaining there for eight days they returned to Medina. (Mustafa ‘Abd al-Wahid, Subul al-Huda wa al-Rashad fi Sirat Khair al-‘Ibad, Vol. 4 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], p. 337) (Ibn Sa‘d, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 2, Bab Ghazwah Rasulullahsa Badr al-Mau‘id [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2017], p. 46)
The Muslims engaged in trade in that festival with the thought in mind that if the battle was to take place then so be it, but if it did not, then they could at least do some business there and the Muslims benefited from this a great deal.
It is then written that during the Battle of Uhud, Abu Sufyan challenged the Muslims to meet the following year. Further details of this have been recorded by Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra. He writes:
“After the battle of Uhud, whilst returning from the battlefield, Abu Sufyan challenged the Muslims to both parties meeting again the following year at Badr, and the Holy Prophetsa announced his acceptance of this challenge. Hence, the following year, in 4 AH at the end of the month of Shawwal, the Holy Prophetsa set out from Medina with a force of 1,500 Companions and appointed Abdullah bin Abdullah bin Ubayy as the Amir in his absence. On the other hand, Abu Sufyan bin al-Harb also set out from Mecca with an army of the Quraish, consisting of 2,000 men. However, despite the victory at Uhud, and a force this large, his heart was fearful and even though he was bent upon the destruction of Islam, he wished not to confront the Muslims until he could gather a larger force. As such, he was still in Mecca, when he dispatched a man by the name of Nuaim, who belonged to a neutral tribe, towards Medina and emphatically instructed him that in any way possible, he should intimidate and threaten the Muslims, and craft fabricated stories to hold them back from setting out for war.
“Hence, this individual came to Medina and crafting false stories of the preparation, strength, zeal and fury of the Quraish, created a state of unrest in Medina. This was carried out to such an extent that various people of weaker dispositions began to harbour fear in taking part in the battle.
“However, the Holy Prophetsa encouraged the Muslims to go forth and in his address, he stated, ‘We have already accepted the challenge of the Quraish and we have promised to set out on this occasion, therefore, we cannot turn back. Even if I am required to go alone, I shall go and stand firm in the face of the enemy.’
“As a result, the fear of the people was dispelled and they became prepared to set out in the company of the Holy Prophetsa with great zeal and sincerity. In any case, the Holy Prophetsa set out from Medina with 1,500 Companions and on the opposing end, Abu Sufyan set out from Mecca with his 2,000 men. However, the power of God was such that the Muslims reached Badr according to their promise, but the army of the Quraish came out to some distance and then retreated to Mecca.
“According to the accounts, it is stated that when Abu Sufyan learnt of the failure of Nuaim, he became fearful in his heart and after having travelled some distance, he retreated with his army admonishing them, ‘This year the famine is very severe, and people are facing financial difficulty. Therefore, it is not wise to fight at this time. We shall attack Medina with greater preparation when a time of affluence is at hand.’
“The Muslim army stayed at Badr for eight days, and since a festival would take place there every year in the beginning of Dhu Al-Qa‘dah (which has been mentioned previously), during the festival, many Companions engaged in trade and were able to generate significant profits. As a matter of fact, in this eight-day business venture, they were able to multiply their initial capital two-fold. When the festival came to an end, and the army of the Quraish did not arrive, the Holy Prophetsa departed from Badr and returned to Medina. The Quraish returned to Mecca and began to prepare for an attack upon Medina. This ghazwah is known as the ghazwah of Badr al-Mau‘id.” (Sirat Khatamun-Nabiyyin, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra, pp. 529-530)
Ghazwah Banu Mustaliq was a battle that took place in Shaban 5 AH. Regarding this battle it is stated that another name for ghazwah Banu Mustaliq is ghazwah Muraysi. (Al-Waqidi, Kitab al-Tarikh wa al-Maghazi [Beirut, Lebanon: ‘Alam al-Kutub, 2013], p. 341)
The Banu Mustaliq were a sub-branch of the Khuza‘ah tribe. This tribe lived near a well-named Muraysi. They lived at a distance of one day’s travel from Furu and Furu is approximately 96 miles from Medina. (Ibn Sa‘d, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 2, Bab Ghazwah Rasulullahsa al-Marisi [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1990], p. 48) (Al-Munjad Arabic Lexicon, under the Arabic root برد)
According to Allamah Ibn Ishaaq, ghazwah Banu Mustaliq took place in 6 AH, whereas according to Musa bin Uqbah it took place in 4 AH. Waqidi states that this ghazwah took place in Shaban 5 AH. Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra has written that the battle took place in 5 AH.
Nonetheless, when the Holy Prophetsa learnt that the Banu Mustaliq were planning to launch an attack on the Muslims, the Holy Prophetsa marched towards them in Shaban, 5 AH with 700 companions. The Holy Prophetsa gave the flag of the Muhajirin to Hazrat Abu Bakrra. According to another narration, the Holy Prophetsa gave the flag of the Muhajirin to the Hazrat Ammar bin Yasserra and the flag of the Ansar to Hazrat Sa‘dra bin Ubadah. (Ibn Kathir, Al-Bidayah wa al-Nihayah, Vol. 4, Ch. 7, Ghazwah Nabi al-Mustaliq, [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2001] pp. 169-170)
The details regarding the incident of Ifk [the great calumny] are as follows. On the return from ghazwah Banu Mustaliq, the hypocrites levelled a false allegation against Hazrat Aishara, daughter of Hazrat Abu Bakrra. This incident is known in history as the incident of Ifk [calumny]. There is a narration of Hazrat Aishara in Sahih al-Bukhari; although I have mentioned this in relation to another companion, (Friday Sermon 14 December 2018) however, it is necessary to mention it in connection with Hazrat Abu Bakrra, and so I will mention it again.
The narration from Hazrat Aishara is as follows:
“It was a custom of the Holy Prophetsa that when he intended to embark on a journey, he used to draw lots amongst his wives (this is mentioned in the narration of Hazrat Aishara), then he would take along with him the one whose name was drawn. On one occasion, before a ghazwah, he drew lots in the same manner, (Hazrat Aisha says) and my name was drawn. Thus, the Holy Prophetsa took me along. This was the time when injunctions on Purdah had already been revealed.
“Hence, I would sit in a litter, and it would be placed on the back of a camel and later on, it would be placed on the ground. When the Holy Prophetsa set back after having finished from one of the expeditions, and we approached the city of Medina, one night, the Holy Prophetsa ordered a departure. When I heard this announcement, I left to one side, away from the army. When I had attended the call of nature, and returned to my camel, I touched my neck and found that my Azfar [Yemenite beaded] necklace had been lost.”
Nonetheless, Hazrat Aishara says:
“I went back in search of my necklace and was delayed a short while. In the meantime, those who had been appointed to lift my carriage and place it on the back of the camel arrived, and assuming that I was in the litter, lifted it and placed it on the camel.”
Hazrat Aishahra further relates:
“The attendants thought that I was in the litter because, in that era, women were light and slender, as they used to eat little food. The attendants, therefore, did not suspect that the litter was unusually lighter when they lifted it. In addition to this, at the time, I was still a young girl. They went ahead with the camel.
“I found my necklace, but the army had left. When I returned to the camp, I did not find anybody there. I then went to the place where I used to stay, but I thought to myself that I should remain at my place, because when people realise that I had been left behind, they would surely return. I sat on my spot and was soon overcome by sleep. Safwan bin Mu‘attal Sulami Dhakwani was behind the army. When he reached the place where I was in the morning, he saw the figure of a sleeping person and came towards me. He had seen me before the order of veiling was prescribed, I woke up when he recited:
[Surely, to Allah we belong…]
“He brought forward his camel and made it kneel close to me. He turned the foot of the camel and I mounted upon it. Safwan began leading the camel until we finally reached the Muslim army at noon, while the army were resting. After this, those who were destined to be ruined, ruined themselves. The key proponent who was responsible for spreading this slander was Abdullah bin Ubayy bin Sulul.
“We reached Medina, and [as soon as we arrived,] I fell ill, and this illness lasted for one month, wherein people continued their slander. During my illness, the only thing that worried me was that I was not receiving the same kindness from Allah’s Messengersa as I used to receive whenever I got sick. Allah’s Messengersa would only come in, greet me and ask, ‘How are you?’
“Up until this point, I had absolutely no idea of this calumny; my illness rendered me very weak and frail. One day, Umm Mistah and I went to Manasi’, which was a place to answer the call of nature and we did not go out except at night. This was a time before we had lavatories near our homes.” (In those days, people did not have bathrooms in the home).
“Our state was like that of the old Arabs, who would go out to the jungle etc. to attend the call of nature. So I and Umm Mistah, daughter of Abu Ruhm, went out. We were walking when she stumbled over her shawl and on that she said, ‘Let Mistah be ruined!’ I said, ‘What an evil thing you have said! Do you vilify a man who took part in the Battle of Badr?’ On that she said, ‘O innocent and naïve girl! Have you not heard what people have been saying?’ Then she told me the slander of the purported by the people. This aggravated my ailment, and when I reached my home, Allah’s Messengersa came to me, and after greeting me, asked, ‘How are you?’ I said, ‘Will you allow me to go to my parents?’” (Hazrat Aishara asked if she could go home to her parents). “As I wanted to confirm this news through them, (i.e. through her parents). Allah’s Messengersa gave me permission to go to my parents. I asked my mother, ‘O mother! What are the people talking about?’ She said, ‘O my daughter! Do not worry, for scarcely is there a charming woman who is loved by her husband and whose husband has other wives besides herself that they (i.e. women) would find faults with her.’
[Holy is Allah]
“‘Are the people really talking in this way?’”
Hazrat Aishara further states:
“I kept on weeping that night till dawn, I could neither stop weeping, nor could I sleep.”
As no revelation had been received in this regard, the next morning, the Holy Prophetsa called Hazrat Ali bin Abi Talibra and Hazrat Usamah bin Zaid to seek their counsel about separating from his wife. As for Usamah, he said of what he knew about her, i.e. based on the relationship of the Holy Prophetsa with Hazrat Aishara and that he knew she was pious and virtuous. Hazrat Usamahra submitted, “O Messengersa of Allah! She is your wife and by God, we know nothing but good with respect to Aishara.” As for Ali bin Abi Talibra, he submitted, “O Messengersa of Allah! Allah the Exalted has not put you in difficulty, and there are plenty of women other than Aishara. Nonetheless, inquire of the household maid, perhaps she knows something and may be able to tell you the actual truth.”
Upon this, the Holy Prophetsa called for Barirah and inquired, “O Barirah! Have you ever seen anything in Aishara as may be considered suspicious?” Barirah responded, “No, I swear by that God Who has sent you with the truth, I have never seen any fault in her, except that on account of her young age, it often happens that she leaves the dough exposed and falls asleep, while the goats come and consume it.”
On the same day, the Holy Prophetsa delivered an address in the mosque and expressed grief with regards to Abdullah bin Ubayy bin Salul, and said:
“O you Muslims! Who will relieve me from that man who has hurt me with his evil statement about my family? By Allah, I know nothing except good about my family; and they have blamed a man about whom I know nothing but good and he never entered my home except with me.”
Upon hearing this address of the Holy Prophetsa, Sa‘d bin Mu‘adh stood up and submitted, “O Messengersa of Allah! I shall put an end to this. If this person is from the Aus tribe, we shall sever his head at once. If he is from our brethren (i.e., from the Khazraj tribe), even still, we are prepared to do as you command.
Upon this, Sa‘d bin Ubadah, chief of the Khazraj tribe stood up, and though he was a righteous man, at the time, he was overcome by the indignation of his tribe and said, “You have spoken a lie. By God! You shall not kill him (i.e. both tribes became incensed) nor do you possess the power to do so.”
Upon this, Usaid bin Hudair, stood up and said: “It is you who has lied: By God, by God, we shall surely kill him. You are a hypocrite, for you argue on behalf of the hypocrites.”
This exchange of remarks incensed some from among the Aus and Khazraj, and an altercation almost broke out, but the Holy Prophetsa, who was still standing on the pulpit, descended and diffused the situation until they fell silent and so did he.”
Hazrat Aishara relates:
“The entire day I kept on weeping and my tears never ceased.” By this time, Hazrat Aishahra was aware of the situation, but she says despite what was going on, she would continue to cry the whole day.
She further says:
“My tears would not stop, nor could I sleep. My parents came to me. I remained as such for two whole nights and one day and I felt as if my liver would burst into pieces. During this time, both my parents were with me, and I was sat crying when a woman from the Ansar sought permission to enter, and I granted her permission. She came and sat down and began to weep with me. After this, the Messengersa of Allah arrived and sat down. This was the first day that he had sat down with me since the calumny. A month had elapsed but no divine revelation had been sent down in my case.”
Hazrat Aishara further states:
“The Holy Prophetsa recited the Kalimah, then said: ‘O Aisha! I have been informed such and such thing about you. If you are innocent, I trust that God shall affirm your innocence. If, however, you have committed a mistake, you should seek forgiveness from God and bow before him, because when a person bows before God confessing his sin, Allah accepts his repentance, and shows Mercy to him.’
“When the Holy Prophetsa had finished his address, I stopped crying, and all my tears had dried away. At that time, I looked to my father (Hazrat Abu Bakrra), and asked him to respond on my behalf, but he said, ‘By God! I do not know what to say in response to the Messengersa of Allah.’ I then asked my mother to respond to the Holy Prophetsa on my behalf and she also stated, ‘By God! I do not know what to say in response to the Messengersa of Allah.’”
Hazrat Aishara states:
“At the time, I was a young girl and did not know much of the Quran, I said, ‘By God, I am aware that you have heard certain rumours which people have spread about, and you have been affected by these statements and consider them to be true. Hence, if I advocate my innocence – and Allah knows indeed that I am innocent – you shall doubt me, but if I accept myself as being guilty, despite Allah knowing that I am innocent, you shall believe me. By God, I find myself in the situation of the father of Josephas, who said:
فَصَبۡرٌ جَمِيۡلٌ وَاللّٰهُ الۡمُسۡتَعَانُ عَلٰي مَا تَصِفُوۡنَ
«That is to say, ‘patience is better for me, and it is Allah alone Whose help I seek against what these people assert.’ Upon saying this, I turned to the other side of my bed and at the time I had firm conviction that Allah the Exalted would quickly manifest my innocence. However, I did not imagine that a [Quranic] revelation would be sent down to clear me of the charges. I did not consider myself to be worthy enough to be mentioned in the Quran.
“I thought that perhaps the Messengersa of Allah would be shown a vision in his sleep by Allah the Exalted. However, by God, the Holy Prophetsa had not yet left this sitting, nor had any other person of the household left, when he was overtaken by the intense state which he would experience at the time of receiving divine revelation. Though it was a cold day, drops of perspiration began to fall from his countenance, and after sometime he came out of this state. The Holy Prophetsa smiled and the first thing he said to me was, ‘O Aisha! Glorify Allah, for He has affirmed your innocence.’ At this, my mother spontaneously said, ‘O Aisha! Get up and go to the Messengersa of Allah!’ At the time, I said, ‘By God, I will not go to the Holy Prophetsa and will express my gratitude to Allah alone.’
“It was then that the following verse was revealed:
اِنَّ الَّذِينَ جَآءُوۡ بِالۡاِفۡكِ عُصۡبَةٌ مِّنۡكُمۡ
“‘Verily, those who brought forth the lie are a party from among you […]’.[ Surah an-Nur, Ch.24: V.12]
“When my innocence had been affirmed, Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiqra (the father of Hazrat Aishahra), who would grant regular support to Mistah bin Uthathah due to his [Mistah’s] poverty and kinship, vowed: ‘By God! I shall never give anything to Mistah owing to his slander against Aisha!’
“However, shortly thereafter, Allah the Almighty revealed:
وَلَا يَاۡتَلِ اُولُوا الۡفَضۡلِ مِنۡكُمۡ وَالسَّعَةِ اَنۡ يُّؤۡتُوۡ ا اُولِى الۡقُرۡبٰى وَالۡمَسٰكِيۡنَ وَالۡمُهٰجِرِيۡنَ فِىۡ سَبِيۡلِ اللّٰهِ ۖ وَلۡيَعۡفُوۡا وَلۡيَصۡفَحُوۡا اَلَا تُحِبُّوۡنَ اَنۡ يَّغۡفِرَ اللّٰهُ لَهُمۡ وَاللّٰهُ غَفُوۡرٌ رَّحِيۡمٌ
“‘And let not those who possess wealth and plenty among you swear not to give aught to the kindred and to the needy and to those who have left their homes in the cause of Allah. Let them forgive and pass over the offence. Do you not desire that Allah should forgive you? And Allah is Most Forgiving, Merciful.’
“Upon this, Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiqra stated, ‘Indeed! By God, I certainly would like to be granted the forgiveness of Allah.’ And so, Hazrat Abu Bakrra reinstated Mistah’s allowance.”
Hazrat Aishahra relates:
“The Holy Prophetsa would inquire of Hazrat Zainab bint Jahashra as to her opinion of me.”
The Holy Prophetsa stated, “O Zainab! What is your opinion of Aisha?” Upon this, Hazrat Zainabra responded, “O Messengersa of Allah! I wish to safeguard my ears and eyes; by God, I have seen nothing but good in Aisha.”
Hazrat Aishara states, “This was the same Zainab who would compete with me. However, due to her virtue, Allah the Exalted saved her from taking part in this calumny.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitab al-Shahadat, Bab Ta ‘dil al-Nisa Ba‘dihunna Ba‘dan, hadith 2661)
This is a detailed narration of Sahih al-Bukhari.
The Promised Messiahas state:
“[…] Just as God Almighty has made it an integral part of His own noble attributes to avert prophecies of warning on the basis of repentance, seeking forgiveness, prayer, and charity, so did He teach the same morals to man as is evidenced by the Holy Quran and the hadith. When—out of sheer maliciousness—the hypocrites had perpetrated a calumny against Hazrat Aisha, may Allah be pleased with her, some unwary Companions also had joined in this narrative. One of those Companions used to get his meal, twice a day, from the home of Hazrat Abu Bakr, may Allah be pleased with him. Due to this lapse, Hazrat Abu Bakr pledged that he would never again feed him as a punishment for this misdeed, whereupon the verse was revealed:
وَلۡيَعۡفُوۡا وَلۡيَصۡفَحُوۡا اَلَا تُحِبُّوۡنَ اَنۡ يَّغۡفِرَاللّٰهُ لَهُمۡ وَاللّٰهُ غَفُوۡرٌ رَّحِيۡمٌ
[Surah an-Nur, Ch.24: V.23]
“At that Hazrat Abu Bakr broke his pledge and restored his meals as usual.”
The Promised Messiahas further writes:
“It is for this reason that it is part of Islamic morality that should one pledge something by way of punishment, the breaking of that pledge is a component of good morals. For instance, if someone swears that with regard to his servant, he shall strike him fifty times with a shoe, to forgive him on account of his repentance and earnest supplication is the Islamic custom, to fulfil the command of:
تَخَلُّق بِاَخْلَاقِ اللّٰهِ
[morality mirror the attributes of Allah]
“Nevertheless, it is not permissible to break a promise; one will be held accountable for the breach of promise, but not for breaking a pledge of chastisement.” (Barahin-e-Ahmadiyya, Vol. 5 Epilogue, Ruhani Khazain, Vol. 21, p. 181)
This is a separate subject matter regarding the difference between a promise and a pledge of chastisement and this has been explained previously as well.
Then there are accounts relating to the Battle of Ahzab which took place in 5AH. This was the third major battle between the Quraish of Mecca and the Muslims and is also known as the Battle of Khandaq [Ditch]. This took place in the month of Shawwal in 5 AH. Since the Quraish and the Jews from Khaibar and various other tribes had all come together in order to attack Medina, therefore this battle is known as the Battle of Ahzab [confederates] in the Holy Quran.
When the Holy Prophetsa exiled the Jewish tribe of Banu Nazir, they went towards Khaibar. A few men from among their elders and well-respected people went to Mecca. They gathered the Quraish and incited them to fight against the Holy Prophetsa. They formed a pact with the Quraish and they all agreed upon fighting against the Holy Prophetsa and they also fixed a date for this. These men from the Banu Nazir left the Quraish and then went to the tribes of Ghatfan and Sulaim and entered into a similar pact with them and then departed from there. The Quraish made preparations and also gathered various other tribes as well as those Arabs who were their confederates, totalling 4,000. Abu Sufyan bin al-Harb was their commander.
Along the way, various other tribes also joined with them and the total number of people in the army was 10,000. The Holy Prophetsa was informed of their departure from Mecca and so he gathered his companions. The Holy Prophetsa informed them of the enemy’s plan and sought counsel from them. Hazrat Salman, the Persian, presented the suggestion of digging a ditch, which was liked by all the Muslims.
In the time of the Holy Prophetsa, the north of Medina was an open plain, whilst all other sides had houses and orchards through which the enemy could not get through. And so, it was decided to dig a ditch towards the north of Medina in order to protect the city. The Holy Prophetsa along with 3,000 Muslims started to dig the ditch. The Holy Prophetsa was digging the ditch alongside the other Muslims so that his participation would raise their spirits and courage. The entire ditch was dug in six days. This ditch was approximately 6,000 yards or 3.5 miles long. (Ibn Sa‘d, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 2, Bab Ghazwah Rasulullahsa al-Khanqad… [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 2017], pp. 50-51) (Shawqi Abu Khalil, Atlas Sirat Nabawisa [Darul Islam, 1424AH], p. 278)
Hazrat Abu Bakrra remained alongside the Holy Prophetsa. Whilst digging the ditch, Hazrat Abu Bakrra would carry the sand in his clothes and he worked alongside the other companions in digging the ditch so that this task could be quickly completed within the period of time designated for this. (Ali Muhammad al-Salabi, Al-Khalifah al-Awwal Abu Bakr Siddique, Fi al-Khandaq wa Bani Quraizah [Beirut, Lebanaon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], pp. 65-66)
No Muslim remained behind in helping to dig the ditch. When Hazrat Abu Bakrra and Hazrat Umarra could not find any baskets to carry the sand, they would place it in their clothes. They both remained together at all times. (Mustafa ‘Abd al-Wahid, Subul al-Huda wa al-Rashad fi Sirat Khair al-‘Ibad, Vol. 4 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], p. 365)
The Holy Prophetsa worked extremely hard during the digging of the ditch. Sometimes he would be digging with a pick-axe or he would gather the sand with a shovel or then carry the baskets of sand. One day the Holy Prophetsa became extremely tired and sat down and rested his left side against a rock. During this time, the Holy Prophetsa fell asleep and Hazrat Abu Bakrra and Hazrat Umarra stood near the Holy Prophetsa and would stop people from walking past him, lest they wake him up. (Mustafa ‘Abd al-Wahid, Subul al-Huda wa al-Rashad fi Sirat Khair al-‘Ibad, Vol. 4 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-‘Ilmiyyah, 1993], p. 367)
When the 10,000 strong army of the Quriash and their allies surrounded Medina, Hazrat Abu Bakrra was commanding one faction of the Muslim army. Later, in the area where Hazrat Abu Bakrra was commanding the army, a mosque was built and was called Masjid Siddiq. (Al-Haaj Hakim Ghulam Nabi, Sayyiduna Siddique Akbar [Lahore, Pakistan: RR Printers, 2010], p. 41)
I will continue narrating these incidents in the future [sermons], God-willing.
At this time, I wish to speak about some deceased members. The first is of respected Mubaraka Begum Sahiba, who was the wife of Mukhtar Ahmad Gondal Sahib. She passed away on 11 January at the age of 93,
إِنَّا لِلّٰهِ وَإِنَّآ إِلَيۡهِ رٰجِعُونَ
[Verily, to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return]
She was the daughter-in-law of Chaudhary Ghulam Muhammad Gondal Sahibra, a companion of the Promised Messiahas. She served the Jamaat with great passion; she also served as the Sadr Lajna for her village, Chak 99 South. She was regular in offering prayers and keeping fasts, she was virtuous, tended to the poor and was very sincere.
Throughout her life, she taught the Holy Quran to both children and adults. She was a musia. She is survived by five sons and three daughters. One of her sons is Iftikhar Ahmad Gondal Sahib, serving as a missionary in Sierra Leone, and Fawad Ahmad, who is also a missionary is her grandson. Aside from this, she has various other grandchildren who are missionaries or life-devotees. May Allah the Almighty bestow His forgiveness and mercy upon her and accept her prayers in favour of her progeny.
The next mention is of Mir Abdul Waheed Sahib, who passed away in the night between 12 and 13 January ,
إِنَّا لِلّٰهِ وَإِنَّآ إِلَيۡهِ رٰجِعُونَ
[Verily, to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return]
He was 58 years old. Ahmadiyyat was established in his family through his great paternal grandfather, Mir Ahmad Din Sahib, who accepted Ahmadiyyat during the time of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Ira in 1911. He was the only Ahmadi in his family. Similarly, from his maternal side, Ahmadiyyat was introduced through his maternal grandfather, Hazrat Sheikh Allah Bakhsh Sahibra of Bannu. Abdul Waheed Sahib’s paternal grandfather was Abdul Karim Sahib. He had a passion for Tabligh [propagation], which is why his grandfather was commonly known in Peshawar by the name Maulvi Abdul Karim. He would carry out extensive research and had made his own library. In 1974 when a delegation went before the Assembly under the leadership of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IIIrh, certain rare books that were needed were found in his library. This has been mentioned by his brother-in-law.
On 9 September 2020, Abdul Waheed Sahibs family was falsely charged under the Blasphemy Law, Section 295c, as a result of which clerics and other people surrounded their home. However, the police were able to remove him and his family from that situation and took them to Rawalpindi. A few days later, their home in Rawalpindi was raided at night and the police arrested his son Abdul Majeed Sahib. Allah the Almighty bestowed Mir Abdul Waheed Sahib with two sons and a daughter. One of his sons Abdul Majeed Sahib, who I just mentioned, is still a prisoner in the way of Allah and was in jail when his father passed away and could not attend the funeral. May Allah the Almighty grant the deceased His forgiveness and mercy and grant his family patience. His son who is imprisoned is around 20 years old; may Allah the Almighty create the means for his swift release.
The third mention is of respected Syed Waqar Ahmad Sahib from the USA, who passed away on 17 January  at the age of 58 due to a heart attack,
إِنَّا لِلّٰهِ وَإِنَّآ إِلَيۡهِ رٰجِعُونَ
[Verily, to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return]
Waqar Ahmad Khan’s wife is the great-granddaughter of Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra (i.e. his maternal grandson’s daughter) and is the daughter of Hazrat Mirza Sharif Ahmad Sahib’sra paternal granddaughter. In this way, she is part of the family of the Promised Messiahas. She married into the family of [Syed Waqar] Shah Sahib. Waqar Shah Sahib’s paternal grandfather, Syed Dr Zuhoor Shah Sahib, had the opportunity to become a life devotee after his retirement and served as a missionary for a few years in Fiji during the time of Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IIIrh. Later, he had the opportunity to serve in Rabwah as well. This family has a strong bond of loyalty with the Jamaat and Khilafat.
Waqar Shah Sahib’s wife, Shazia Khan says, “Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh encouraged me to pray with regards to the marriage proposal. After praying, when I agreed to the marriage, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh approved of the match.” In other words, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IVrh arranged for this marriage.
She writes, “In 33 years of marriage, Waqar Sahib guided me along with him in every step. He tended to every one of my needs and desires. He was an exemplary father; he never did anything for himself and was a simple person. He had no desires of his own, and even if he did, he sacrificed them for his family’s sake.”
She further says, “The most beautiful day for me was when he proudly said to someone that when he goes to the mosque, he repeats his oath and that there was nothing more important to him than fulfilling this oath. He could sacrifice everything for this oath.”
These were not mere claims, in fact, I myself have seen and know, that even when faced with an extremely difficult trial, he safeguarded this oath of giving precedence to faith over worldly matters and continued to fulfil it, irrespective of any family ties. He never wavered in his obedience of Khilafat.
She says, “even if he did not understand something, he would still remain obedient, and say that it is our duty to be obedient. His disposition was filled with gratitude, and he would always advise me to do the same. He never showed negligence in offering financial sacrifices.”
His son, Syed Adil Ahmad, who is now a missionary after graduating from Jamia Ahmadiyya Canada and obtaining his Shahid degree, says, “By the grace of Allah the Almighty, my father was a simple, and sincere person. He was less concerned about himself, and would always fulfil the needs of all his children and our mother. He would never get anything nice for himself, in fact, we would often have to remind him to spend on himself as well. He had great respect for missionaries and the Nizam-e-Jamaat.”
His father-in-law, Mahmud Ahmad Khan Sahib, who is the maternal grandson of Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra and the paternal grandson of Hazrat Nawab Mubaraka Begum Sahibra, writes, “Waqar (i.e. his son-in-law) possessed high morals and was very hospitable.” He says, “I never saw a frown on his face no matter how many guests came to visit him or even in times of difficulty.” He says, “I remember in the beginning, he would often scold his son Adil because of his carelessness, but when Adil devoted his life, Waqar’s conduct towards him changed completely, and he developed a very close bond of respect and honour with his son.”
Munir Ahmad Sahib, the former Amir of the Jamaat in Abu Dhabi writes, “Waqar Sahib lived in Abu Dhabi along with his family while he worked here, during which time I developed close family ties with him. He was a banker by profession; simplicity and sociability were his salient qualities. He was strongly attached to the community and its Nizam. He possessed profound love and obedience for Khilafat.”
He further says, “Until he moved to USA, he would happily offer his home for any needs of the Jamaat, and so it would be used for the Friday prayers and other gatherings. He also served as the internal auditor of the Jamaat.”
Similarly, Syed Hashim Akbar writes, “I had the opportunity of working with him, and always found him to be sociable and eager to help others.”
May Allah the Almighty grant him His forgiveness and mercy; may He enable his children to be virtuous, and accept his prayers in their favour.
After the Friday prayers, I will offer their funeral prayers, insha-Allah.
(Original Urdu transcript published in Al Fazl International, 18 February 2022, pp. 5-10. Translated by The Review of Religions.)