Men of Excellence


Friday Sermon

7 February 2020

Men of Excellence


After reciting the Tashahud, Ta‘awuz and Surah al-Fatihah, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih Vaa stated:

The companion who I will mention today is Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah Ansari. Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah’s father’s name was Maslamah bin Salamah. His paternal grandfather’s name is recorded as Salamah as well as Khalid. Hazrat Maslamah’sra mother was known as Umm-e-Sahm and her name was Khulaidah bint Abu Ubaidah. Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah belonged to the Aus tribe of the Ansar and was the confederate of the Abd-Ash‘hal tribe.

Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah was known by the titles of Abu Abdillah, Abu Abdir Rahman and Abu Saeed. According to Allamah ibn Hajar, the title of Abu Abdillah is more authentic. According to one narration, he was born 22 years before the Holy Prophetsa was appointed to the station of prophethood and was among those people who was named Muhammad in the time of the jahiliyyah era [era prior to the advent of Islam]. (Al-Tabaqaat-ul-Kubra li ibn Saad, Vol. 3, p. 338, Muhammadra bin Maslamah, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1990) (Al-Isabah Fi Tamyeez Al Sahabah, Vol. 6, p. 28, Muhammadra bin Maslamah, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1995) (Usdul Ghabah, Vol. 5, p. 106, Muhammadra bin Maslamah, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2003)

The Jews of Medina were anticipating the advent of a prophet, who, according to the prophecy of Mosesas, would be named Muhammad. When the Arabs came to know of this, they began to name their children Muhammad. In the books pertaining to the life and character of the Holy Prophetsa, the people who were named Muhammad as a good omen numbered between three and fifteen. Allama Suhaili, who has written a commentary on Sirat Ibn Hisham has recorded three individuals with the name Muhammad. Allama Ibn Atheer has recorded six names, whereas Abdul Wahab Sheraani has recorded fifteen names.

For information and [general] knowledge, I will list the fifteen names:

Muhammad bin Sufyan, Muhammad bin Uhayhah, Muhammad bin Humran, Muhammad bin Khuza‘i, Muhammad bin Adi, Muhammad bin Usama, Muhammad bin Barah, Muhammad bin Harith, Muhammad bin Harimaaz, Muhammad bin Khauli, Muhammad bin Yahmadi, Muhammad bin Zaid, Muhammad bin Usaidi, Muhammad Fuqami and Muhammadra bin Maslamah. (Muhammadun Rasulullah Walladhina Ma‘ahu, Abdul Hameed Jaudah al-Sahaar, Vol. 2, pp. 111-112, Maktabah Misr) (Al Raud-ul-Anf, Vol. 1, p. 280, Dar-ul-Kutub Al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut) (Usdul Ghabah, Vol. 5, p. 72, Muhammadra bin Uhayhah, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2003) (Kashful Ghummah ‘An Jami’il Ummah, al Shi‘rani, Vol. 1, pp. 283-184, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, 1998) (Al-Isabah Fi Tamyeez Al-Sahabah, Vol. 6, p. 28, Muhammadra bin Maslamah, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1995)

Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah was among the early converts of Islam. He accepted Islam through Hazrat Musabra bin Umair before Hazrat Saadra bin Muaz accepted Islam. When Hazrat Ubaidahra bin Al-Jarrah migrated to Medina, the Holy Prophetsa established a bond of brotherhood between him and Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah. Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah was among those companions who killed Kaab bin Ashraf and Abu Rafi Sallaam bin Abu Huqaiq.

Both of these individuals were extremely mischievous and relentless in their efforts to cause harm to Muslims and even sought to launch an attack against the Muslims and the Holy Prophetsa. Consequently, the Holy Prophetsa assigned these companions with the task of killing them. During various battles, Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah was appointed by the Holy Prophetsa to oversee Medina [in his absence]. Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah’s sons, Jafarra, Abdullahra, Saadra, Abdur Rahmanra and Umarra, are also counted amongst the companions of the Holy Prophetsa.

Except for the Battle of Tabuk, Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah took part in all the battles, including the Battle of Badr and Uhud. During the Battle of Tabuk, Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah took permission from the Holy Prophetsa to remain behind in Medina. (Al-Isabah Fi Tamyeez Al-Sahabah, Vol. 6, pp. 28-29, Muhammadra bin Maslamah, Dar-ul-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1995) (Sharh Zurqani, Vol. 6, p. 511, Hadith Bani Nadeer, Darul Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 1996)

As mentioned earlier, Hazrat Muhammadra bin Maslamah was among those who were assigned with the mission to kill the two mischievous individuals who opposed Islam. I have mentioned details of this incident in relation to Hazrat Ubadahra bin Bishr around one and a half years ago. Therefore, I shall mention some details again briefly, but there are also some other details in relation to this incident which I will also mention.

With reference to the killing of Kaab bin Ashraf, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra has written in Sirat Khatamun Nabiyyin

“The manner in which the Battle of Badr brought forth the heart-felt enmity of the Jews of Medina and they continued to grow in their mischief and disturbances. As such, the incident of the execution of Kaab bin Ashraf is also a link in this very chain. Although Kaab was a Jew by religion, he was not actually Jewish by descent; rather, he was an Arab. His father, Ashraf, was a very clever and cunning man of the Banu Nibhan, who came to Medina and developed relations with the Banu Nazir and become their confederate. Ultimately, he managed to gain such power and influence that Abu Rafi‘ bin Abil-Huqaiq, head-chief of the Banu Nazir, gave him his daughter in marriage. It was this very daughter who gave birth to Kaab, who grew to attain an even greater status than that of his father. This was to such extent that ultimately, he took on such a capacity that all the Jews of Arabia began to accept him as their chief.

“From a moral perspective, he was a man of extremely ill morals, and was a master in the art of secret schemes and conspiracies. (He was extremely cunning in his ill deeds, causing strife and dissention and the spread of evil.) When the Holy Prophetsa migrated to Medina, along with the other Jews, Kaab bin Ashraf also participated in the treaty which the Holy Prophetsa drafted between the Jews with regard to mutual friendship, peace and security, and collective defence. However, deep within, the fire of malice and enmity began to burn in the heart of Kaab and he began to oppose Islam and the Founder of Islam through secret schemes and conspiracies. However, after this, the opposition of Kaab took on a more dangerous form, (he continued in his hostility and evil ploys) and ultimately, after the Battle of Badr, he began to employ such conduct, as was extremely mischievous and seditious, and created very dangerous circumstances for the Muslims.

“However, on the occasion of Badr, when the Muslims were granted an extraordinary victory, and most of the chieftains of the Quraish were slain, he understood that this new religion would not die out by itself. Initially, he thought that this newly found religion would soon come to an end. However, when he witnessed the outcome of the Battle of Badr, he realised that Islam would not simply fade away.

“Hence, after Badr, he resolved to exert his best efforts to abolish and utterly destroy Islam.

“When this news had been confirmed and Kaab was assured that the victory at Badr had granted Islam such strength as was beyond his wildest dreams, he was overcome with anger and rage. He immediately prepared for journey and took to Mecca, and upon reaching there, by the power of his persuasive speech and poetic tongue, inflamed the fire that was kindling in the hearts of the Quraish. He created an unquenchable thirst in their hearts for Muslim blood, and filled their hearts with sentiments of revenge and enmity. Then, when their emotions had become immensely sparked as a result of his incitement, Kaab took them to the courtyard of the Ka‘bah, and handing them the drapes of the Ka‘bah, had them swear that they would not rest until Islam and the Founder of Islam had been wiped out from the face of the earth.

“This evil person turned to the other tribes of Arabia, and travelling from tribe to tribe, he incited people against the Muslims. Then, he returned to Medina and whilst composing tashbib, he alluded to the Muslim women in a very filthy and obscene manner in his provocative couplets. In doing so, he did not even spare the women from the household of the Holy Prophetsa in his amorous couplets, and had these couplets widely publicised throughout the country. Finally, he hatched a conspiracy to assassinate the Holy Prophetsa. Under the ploy of a feast, he invited the Holy Prophetsa to his residence, and with a few Jewish young men he schemed to have the Holy Prophetsa assassinated. However, by the Grace of God, information was received in advance and this plan of his was unsuccessful.

“In light of the treaty which had been settled between the inhabitants of Medina upon his arrival, the Holy Prophetsa was the chief and commander in chief of the democratic State of Medina. Thus, when the state of affairs escalated to such an extent, and charges of infraction of treaty, rebellion, inciting war, sedition, use of foul language and conspiracy to assassinate the Holy Prophetsa had been established, he issued the verdict that Kaab bin Ashraf was liable to be put to death due to his actions. However, due to the sedition of Kaab, since the atmosphere of Medina at the time was such that if a formal announcement had been made before his execution, there was a possibility that civil war may have erupted in Medina, and there was no telling how much massacre and carnage would have ensued as a result. The Holy Prophetsa was willing to offer any possible and reasonable sacrifice in order to prevent international violence and bloodshed.

“Thus, he instructed that Kaab should not be executed publicly; rather, a few people should quietly find an opportunity and put an end to him. The Holy Prophetsa assigned this duty to a faithful Companion of the Aus tribe named Muhammadra bin Maslamah, and emphasised that whatever strategy was devised, should be executed with the counsel of Saad bin Muazra, who was the chief of the Aus tribe. Muhammadra bin Maslamah submitted, ‘O Messengersa of Allah! In order to kill him silently, we shall be required to say something,’ which meant that some excuse, etc., would be required, by which Kaab could be lured out of his residence and executed in a secure location. Taking into account the grave consequences which could have arisen if a covert operation had been ruled out, the Holy Prophetsa said, ‘Alright then.’ As such, with the counsel of Saadra bin Muaz, Muhammadra bin Maslamah took Abu Na‘ilahra and two or three other Companions along and reached the residence of Kaab. They called Kaab out from his living quarters and said, ‘Our Chief (i.e., Muhammadsa) demands charity of us, while we are of straitened circumstances. Would you be so kind as to give us a loan?’ Upon hearing this, Kaab jumped with joy and said, ‘By God! This is nothing – the day is not far when you shall become averse to him and abandon him.’ Muhammadra bin Maslamah responded, ‘In any case, we have already accepted Muhammadsa, but you tell us whether or not you will give us a loan?’ ‘Of course!’ said Kaab, ‘But you will be required to deposit some collateral.’ Muhammadra bin Maslamah enquired, ‘What do you require?’ This wretched person responded, ‘Leave your women as collateral.’ Suppressing his anger, Muhammadra bin Maslamah said, ‘How is it possible for us to leave our women as collateral to a man like yourself.’ He responded, ‘Alright, then your sons shall do.’ Muhammadra bin Maslamah responded, ‘This is not possible either; we cannot bear the reproach of the whole of Arabia. However, if you are generous enough, we are willing to leave our arms with you as collateral.’ Kaab agreed, and Muhammadra bin Maslamah and his companions left with the promise to return at night. At nightfall, this party arrived at the residence of Kaab with their weapons (as now they were able to openly take their arms along with according to the agreement they had settled). When they had led Kaab out of his home, they brought him to one side during the course of discussions. After some time, walking along, Muhammadra bin Maslamah, or some other companion, raised his hand towards the head of Kaab by some excuse, and with great speed, taking firm hold of his hair, he called out to his companions, ‘Strike now!’ The Companions, who were already prepared and armed, wielded their swords at once; finally Kaab was killed and fell to the ground. Muhammadra bin Maslamah and his companions departed from there and quickly presented themselves to the Holy Prophetsa and conveyed to him the news of his execution. “When news of the execution of Kaab became known, a tremor rippled through the city, and the Jewish people were deeply enraged. The following day, in the morning, a delegation of the Jews presented themselves before the Holy Prophetsa and complained that their leader Kaab bin Ashraf had been murdered in such and such way. The Holy Prophetsa listened to their comments and said, ‘Are you also aware of the crimes which Kaab is guilty of?’ Then, the Holy Prophetsa briefly reminded them of all the evil schemes which Kaab was guilty of, i.e., infraction of treaty, inciting war, sedition, use of foul language and conspiracy of assassination, etc. Upon this, the people became fearful and did not say a word. After this, the Holy Prophetsa said, ‘At least from here onwards, you would do well to live in peace and harmony, and do not sow the seed of enmity, violence and disorder.’ As such, with the agreement of the Jews, a new treaty was drafted, and the Jews promised once again to live with the Muslims in peace and harmony, and to abstain from a course of violence and disorder.”

If Kaab was not guilty of the aforementioned crimes, the Jews would never have easily entered into a new treaty nor would they have remained silent upon his killing. Nonetheless, they entered into a new treaty to live in peace and harmony.

“Nowhere in history is it recorded that after this, the Jews ever mentioned the execution of Kaab bin Ashraf and accused the Muslims, for in their hearts they knew that Kaab received the rightful punishment due to him. Some Western historians have greatly worn out their pens on the issue of the execution of Kaab bin Ashraf, and presenting this incident as being an unpleasant blemish upon the mantle of the Holy Prophetsa, they have levelled allegations. However, what needs to be studied is that firstly, was this execution in itself a justified action or not? Secondly, was the method that was employed for this execution justifiable or not?

“With regard to the first issue, it should be remembered that Kaab bin Ashraf had entered into a formal agreement of peace and security with the Holy Prophetsa. Scheming against the Muslims was out of the question, especially when he had agreed to support the Muslims against all foreign enemies and to maintain friendly relations with the Muslims. By virtue of this treaty, he had also accepted that the Holy Prophetsa would be the chief of the democratic state which had been established in Medina, and that the verdict of the Holy Prophetsa would be legally binding in all disputes, etc. Therefore, historical evidence proves that under this very treaty, Jewish people would present their cases before the Holy Prophetsa and he would administer verdicts to them.

“In these circumstances, ignoring all of his treaties and agreements, Kaab committed treason against the Muslims, as a matter of fact, against the very government of the time. He planted the seed of violence and disorder in Medina; he attempted to inflame a fire of war within the country and dangerously incited the tribes of Arabia against the Muslims and conspired to assassinate the Holy Prophetsa. In these circumstances, did the crimes of Kaab not warrant some form of punishment? Then was there any punishment lesser than death which could have brought an end to this mischievous behaviour of the Jews? “Even today, in countries which are known as ‘civilised’, when a criminal is guilty of the crimes of rebellion, infraction of treaty, inciting war, and attempted assassination, is such a person not administered the death penalty?”

Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra then addresses the question of the manner in which he was killed and whether that was right or wrong. He writes:

“With regard to this issue, it should be remembered that there was no formal ruling power in Arabia at the time, rather every individual and every tribe was free and independent. In this state, which court of law existed where a case could be filed against Kaab and a formal judgement for his execution could be sought? Should a complaint have been lodged with the Jews, of whom he was a leader, and who had themselves committed treachery against the Muslims already, and would create disorder every other day? Should the case have been presented before the Quraish of Mecca, who were thirsty for the blood of the Muslims? Should justice have been sought from the tribes of Sulaim and Ghatafan, who had planned to launch a sudden attack on Medina at night three or four times, in the last few months alone?”

Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra then writes:

“Reflect on the state of Arabia at the time, and then contemplate that when a person was guilty of provocation, inciting war, mischievous behaviour and attempted assassination, and due to this, his remaining alive was felt to be a threat to their own security and the security of the country, what other alternative was available to the Muslims, except for executing such a person when the opportunity presented itself, in the consideration of self-defence.

“It is far more beneficial for an evil and violent man to be executed, as opposed to the lives of many peace-abiding citizens being put to danger, and the peace of the country being ruined.

“It should also be remembered that in light of the treaty which took place between the Muslims and Jews after the migration, the Holy Prophetsa did not possess the capacity of an ordinary citizen. On the contrary, he had now become the chief of the democratic state which had been established in Medina. The Holy Prophetsa had been given the authority to issue whatever verdict he deemed appropriate with respect to all disputes and political affairs. Hence, in the interest of domestic peace, the Holy Prophetsa declared Kaab as being worthy of death due to his mischievous behaviour. (Hence, no one could object to this verdict made by the Holy Prophetsa.)

“When historical evidence establishes that even the Jews themselves found this punishment of Kaab as being reasonable in light of his crimes and took to silence without raising a single objection. If the allegation is raised that prior to the verdict of execution, why were the Jews not summoned so that the crimes of Kaab could be listed, and then after proof had been completely furnished, his execution could have been formally and publicly announced (the answer to this is) at the time, the situation prevalent was so sensitive that if such a method had been employed, there was a serious risk of the rise of inter-tribal conflict. Moreover, it would not have been surprising for a dangerous chain of violence and bloodshed, and civil war to have broken out in Medina. Hence, in the likeness of those tasks which prove to be more beneficial if done quickly and silently, taking into consideration public peace, the Holy Prophetsa deemed it appropriate to quietly issue the verdict relevant to the punishment of Kaab. However, there was absolutely no deception of any kind involved in this, nor did the Holy Prophetsa intend to keep this punishment secret, because as soon as the delegation of Jews came to the Holy Prophetsa the following morning, the Holy Prophetsa immediately and without hesitation related the entire account to them. Furthermore, by taking full responsibility for this action, the Holy Prophetsa proved that there was no question of deception or anything of that sort. Moreover, the Holy Prophetsa clearly told the Jews that on the basis of such and such grave crimes, this punishment was administered to Kaab, and that it was issued by his express order.

“The allegation that on this occasion, the Holy Prophetsa gave his Companions permission to lie and cheat, is absolutely incorrect and authentic narrations reject this notion. The Holy Prophetsa did not at all give permission to lie and speak falsehood, rather, according to the narration in Sahih Bukhari … when Muhammadra bin Maslamah said to the Holy Prophetsa, ‘In order to execute Kaab silently, we shall be required to say something’, taking into consideration the towering benefits, which were the reason for a silent punishment in the first place, the Holy Prophetsa responded merely by saying, ‘Alright then.’ On this occasion, there was absolutely no further explanation or clarification by either the Holy Prophetsa or Muhammadra bin Maslamah. The only thing that was implied by the Holy Prophetsa was that in order for Muhammadra bin Maslamah and his companions to bring Kaab outside upon reaching his home, they would surely be required to say something as a result of which Kaab would willingly and happily leave his home and come along with them; and there is absolutely nothing wrong with this. After all, during a time of war, when spies are sent on a mission, they too are required to say such things, and no sensible individual ever objects to this. Hence, in any case, the mantle of the Holy Prophetsa is pure.

“Now remains the issue of Muhammadra bin Maslamah, and his companions who went there and actually said such things. As such, even in their dialogue, there is actually nothing about it which can be deemed immoral. In actual fact, they did not say anything false. Albeit, taking into consideration the fundamental purpose of their mission, they did use certain words, which could be construed in more than one way, but there was no other option. In a state of war, for a good and righteous cause, such a mild diversion from simple and straightforward words, cannot be objectionable at all in the eyes of a sensible and honest individual.”

Some people have posed the question whether or not it is permissible to lie and deceive whilst in a state of war.

“In various narrations, it has been related that the Holy Prophetsa would say:

اَلْحَرْبُ خُدْعَۃٌ

meaning, ‘War is but deception.’

“The meaning which is inferred by this is that God-forbid, the Holy Prophetsa permitted the use of deception in war. Although, in the first place, the words اَلْحَرْبُ خُدْعَۃٌ do not mean that it is permissible to employ deception in war. Rather, the only meaning which is implied here is that ‘War is in itself a kind of deception.’ In other words, with regard to the outcome of war, there can be no definitive statement as to what shall happen. That is to say, there are so many varying factors which affect the outcome of war, that irrespective of the course of events, a statement cannot be passed with respect to its outcome. This meaning is supported by the fact that this narration has been related in a hadith in two ways. In one narration, the words are that the Holy Prophetsa said:

اَلْحَرْبُ خُدْعَۃٌ

‘War is but deception.’

“In the second narration the words are:

سَمَّی الْحَرْبَ خُدْعَۃً

‘The Holy Prophetsa has named war as being deceit.’

“When both of these narrations are combined, the definitive outcome which is derived is that the Holy Prophetsa did not condone the use of deception in war, rather he meant that war is in itself a thing which deceives a person. However, if one insists upon translating this to mean that deception is permitted in war, even still, most surely, at this instance, the word ‘deception’ infers strategies and tactics of war, and falsehood and betrayal are not implied at all. The reason being that in this instance, the word khud‘atun infers manoeuvres and strategies of war, not falsehood and deception.

“Hence, the meaning is that it is not prohibited to catch the enemy off-guard and apprehend or subdue them by means of some strategy or tactic; and there can be different forms of this manoeuvring. (There can be various forms of strategies and tactics.) For example, it is established by authentic narrations that when the Holy Prophetsa would set out on a campaign, he would generally not disclose his final destination. At times, even if he intended to travel south, at the start of his journey, he would head towards the north, and would then divert towards the south. Then, if someone would enquire of him as to where he had come from, instead of mentioning Medina, he would name a close or far off location where he had previously setup camp, or he would employ some other lawful strategy of war. To the same affect, as the Holy Quran has indicated, at times, in order to throw off their enemy, the Companions would begin to retreat from the field of battle; and when the enemy would least expect it, and when its ranks would become disarranged, they would launch a sudden attack. All of these are examples of khud‘atun which has been deemed lawful in a state of war, and is considered to be permissible even today. However, to deal with falsehood and treachery is something which Islam has very strictly forbidden. As such, the Holy Prophetsa would say, ‘In Islam, after associating partners with God and usurping the rights of parents, the third greatest sin is speaking a lie.’

“Furthermore, he would state that belief and cowardice can come together at one place; similarly, belief and miserliness can also come together at one place, but belief and falsehood can never come together at one place. Then, with regard to deception and treachery, he remarked, ‘A person who commits treachery shall be subjected to the severe wrath of Allah on the day of resurrection.’ Hence, the kind of khud‘atun which has been permitted in war is not actual deception or falsehood, rather it infers the use of such tactics of war, which are employed to catch the enemy off -guard and defeat it. In some instances, this may seem to apparently resemble falsehood and deception, but in actuality, it is not so.”

Thus, according to Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra, the following hadith lends support to this notion:

“Umm-e-Kalthum bint Aqabahra relates, ‘There are only three instances where I have found the Holy Prophetsa to permit the use of such statements, which do not actually constitute falsehood, but ordinary people may construe them as such. Firstly, war; secondly, when reconciling between two people who are at conflict with one another and thirdly, when a husband or wife say something, which is intended to please or gratify the other.’ (Thus, one’s intentions or reasons ought to be pure.) This hadith leaves no room for doubt in the fact that the kind of khud‘atun that is permitted in war does not imply falsehood and deception, rather what is inferred are such things that must be employed at times, as tactics of war, and which are considered to be lawful in every nation and in every religion. After mentioning the account of Kaab bin Ashraf, Ibn Hisham has recorded the narration that after the execution of Kaab, the Holy Prophetsa instructed the Companions that now they should slay any Jew they were able to apprehend. Hence, one Companion by the name of Mahisah, attacked a Jew and killed him. The same narration has been related in Abu Dawud as well. The source of both these narrations is Ibn Ishaq.”

Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra further writes:

“In light of the science of narration, this narration is weak and unreliable (the Holy Prophetsa never said such a thing) because Ibn Hisham has recorded it without a chain of narration, and the chain of narrators, which has been provided by Abu Dawud is weak and incomplete. In this chain of narrators, Ibn Ishaq states that he heard this incident from a freed slave of Zain bin Thabitra, and that anonymous slave heard this incident from an unknown daughter of Mahisah (there are no narrations about who this girl was), and that daughter had heard this incident from her father. Now, any individual can understand that a narration of this type, where two narrators are absolutely anonymous and unknown, cannot be acceptable in the least.

“Moreover, even if a person contemplates in terms of dirayat, this tale does not hold true because the general practice of the Holy Prophetsa categorically refutes the notion that he would ever issue forth such a general order. Furthermore, if this was a general order, then definitely as a result, there should have been numerous killings of this sort. However, narrations have only reported a single case, which substantiates that this was not a general order. Then, when it is established in light of authentic narrations that the very next day a new treaty was settled with the Jews, in such a case, it cannot be accepted at all that a command of this nature would have been issued.

“Furthermore, if such an incident had actually occurred, the Jews would have surely raised a huge hue and cry. However, no historical account demonstrates that any such complaint was lodged by the Jews. Hence, in terms of both riwayat and dirayat, this tale proves to be false.

“If this narration can be taken to possess any truth at all then only inasmuch that when an outcry broke out in Medina aft er the execution of Kaab bin Ashraf, and the Jewish people became enraged, perceiving a threat from the Jews, the Holy Prophetsa may have told the companions that in self-defence, (even then there is no substantial evidence for this) they were permitted to slay any such Jew who posed a threat and attacked them. However, (even if this were to be the case) it seems as if this atmosphere existed for only a few hours because the very next day, a new treaty was settled with the Jews and a state of peace and security was brought about once again.”

Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmad Sahibra then writes:

“There is a slight difference of opinion with regard to the date of the execution of Kaab bin Ashraf. Ibn Saad has stated that it occurred in Rabi‘ al-Awwal 3 AH. However, Ibn Hisham has placed it after the Sariyyah of Zaid bin Harithahra, which is confirmed to have taken place in Jamadi al-Akhirah.”

He further writes, “At this instance, I have maintained the order adopted by Ibn Hisham.” (Sirat Khatamun-Nabiyyin, Hazrat Mirza Bashir Ahmadra, pp. 466-477)

Nonetheless, there are some accounts that remain, which I shall narrate in the future sermons.

(Original Urdu published in Al Fazl International, on 28 February 2020, pp. 5-8. Translated by The Review of Religions.)


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