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Signs of the Divine Message

Wednesday 29/04/2009

The Message of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), is the most magnificent and comprehensive of all messages that Prophets have been sent with, since time began. With His oversight and protection, Allah The Almighty reinforced it with stunning indicators long before the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), was sent or even born. These signs heralded his,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), coming, as a source of goodness and guidance for mankind.

The first and foremost of them was the previous Prophets having given news of the coming of Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), as in the verse (that means): {And [mention] when Jesus, the son of Mary, said, "O children of Israel, indeed I am the messenger of Allah to you confirming what came before me of the Torah and bringing good tidings of a messenger to come after me, whose name is Ahmad."} [Quran 61:6]
 
The historian and scholar, Ibn Katheer  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him commented that ‘Eesa (Jesus), may Allah exalt his mention, meant, that as the Torah bore prophecies of his coming, he, too, has glad tidings of the advent of a future Prophet. He, may Allah exalt his mention, described him to be an unlettered Arab, the Makkan Prophet and Messenger. 
 
Mu’aawiyah, the son of Abu Sufyaan, may Allah be pleased with him, narrates that Umayyah ibn Abi As-Salt told his father that he read in the Books the description of a prophet who would appear in their own land. So, Umayyah ibn Abi As-Salt at first believed it referred to him, until he discovered that the prophet would belong to the tribe of Banu ‘Abd Manaaf. He then found that only one man absolutely fit that description: ‘Utbah ibn Rabee‘ah; but when even he exceeded forty years of age without receiving the revelation, Umayyah ibn Abi As-Salt became certain it would be someone else.
 
So, when Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam, came with the message of Islam and Abu Sufyaan, may Allah be pleased with him, told Umayyah about him, he said: “He is truthful [in his claim to Prophethood] and you should follow him.” But, when Abu Sufyaan, may Allah be pleased with him, inquired as to why he did not do the same, Umayyah replied that he was embarrassed to become a follower of a younger man from Banu ‘Abd Manaaf and acknowledge that he was not a prophet, contrary to his claims to the ladies of Banu Thaqeef. It was nothing more than pride that prevented a man like him, from following the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alayhi wasallam, even though he attested to his Prophethood.
 
The predicted advent of a new prophet was even discussed among some rabbis and priests. Salamah ibn Waqsh, may Allah be pleased with him, narrated that long before the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), was sent with the message of Islam, a Jewish neighbor of his in Madeenah, would often speak of resurrection in the Hereafter, Paradise and Hell. When he was asked about its signs, he would point to Makkah and reply: “The advent of a prophet from that city.” Asked about the time of his coming, he looked at the sky and pointed at Salamah ibn Waqsh, who was still a boy, and said: “If this young man reaches adulthood, he will see him.” And thus it happened, that Allah The Almighty sent His Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), and while others, including Salamah, believed in him, the Jew, who was still alive then, did not, out of envy and pride. [Ahmad]
 
Even Heraclius expected the coming of a prophet, as he remarked, at the end of a famous exchange between him and Abu Sufyaan, may Allah be pleased with him: “If what you are saying [about Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention )] is true, then he will come to own this very place where my feet are.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]. True to his prediction, the Byzantine Empire soon fell to the advancing Muslim armies.
 
Signs of Prophethood early in the life of Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention )
 
Preceding the Prophethood of Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), some remarkable events came to pass. The Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), said: “I am the answer to the supplication of my father Ibraaheem (Abraham), [who supplicated to Allah for a Prophet to be sent], and the glad tiding of ‘Eesa, may Allah exalt their mention. When my mother was pregnant with me, she saw, in a vision, that light was coming out of her, which lit the palaces of Ash-Shaam.” [Ahmad: (Saheeh)]
 
Even the birth of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), in the Year of the Elephant, was no coincidence, but an introduction to his mission of Prophethood. Ibn Katheer  may  Allaah  have  mercy  upon  him stated that the miraculous incident, which culminated in Allah The Almighty safeguarding His House – the Ka’bah – against Abrahah and his army, and destroying them, was a message to Quraysh: that Allah The Almighty has protected the Ka’bah, not because of them, but to preserve its sanctity that will be properly honored and esteemed by the imminent Prophethood of Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), the Seal of Prophets.
 
As he,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), grew up, other miracles occurred, as related by his wet-nurse, Haleemah As-Sa‘diyyah, may Allah be pleased with her. She related that then she took the infant Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), back home with her, she found herself able to feed him her own milk, whereas she previously could not even nurse her own child; and her husband could also milk their animals, whereas the udders were formerly dry. Only the existence of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), among them could explain these blessings.
 
Still under her guardianship, at the age of four, another miraculous incident transpired. The angel Jibreel (Gabriel), may Allah exalt his mention, came to little Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), while he was playing with his friends. He took hold of him, lay him on the ground, opened his chest and took out his heart. Then, Jibreel, may Allah exalt his mention, extracted a dark clot from it, noting: “That was the share of Satan in [him].” After cleansing the heart with the water of Zamzam in a gold basin, he restored it and closed his chest.
 
Also, of the signs of his Prophethood was a stone that Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), said regarding: “I know a stone in Makkah which used to greet me before I was sent with the Message of Islam. I still know it. ” [Muslim]
 
Further to that, before Muhammad,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) was dispatched with preaching Islam, he would see visions that would materialize in real life exactly as he had perceived them.
 
Then, in preparation for his Prophethood, Allah The Almighty made him,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), love worship, for which he would isolate himself in the cave of Hiraa’. [Al-Bukhari]
 
In conclusion, this is merely a summary of the signs of the coming of the Prophet,  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ), all of which are too numerous to be cited in this short article.

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