Media Friday Sermon : 14th January 2011 (Urdu)

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Friday Sermon delivered by Hadhrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad, Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. Topic: Holy Prophet's(saw) attribute of forgiveness.  Recorded on 14th January 2011.

 

Hudhur gave a discourse on the Holy Prophet’s (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) attribute of forgiveness in today’s Friday Sermon. He began by reciting the Quranic verse: ‘Take to forgiveness, and enjoin kindness, and turn away from the ignorant.’ (7:200). Hudhur said when Hadhrat ‘Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said that the Prophet’s life was a representation of Quranic commandments, she identified the endless sea of high morals that he was and had thus indicated to search for precious pearls from this endless sea. His elevated station as the Seal of all the Prophets is apparent in the Divine statement of: ‘…This day have I perfected your religion for you and completed My favour upon you and have chosen for you Islam as religion…’ (5:4) as God revealed the last Book of religious law to him. Who could understand the Book more than him! Every aspect of his life was a practical depiction of the Holy Qur’an and a blessed model for us to follow. Today Hudhur chose to speak on his blessed quality of forgiveness. This quality enhanced the pious in their love for him, and highlighted the filth of the hypocrite when he forgave them.

The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) wrote that people who are close to God have to experience terrible verbal abuse but they abide by: ‘Take to forgiveness, and enjoin kindness, and turn away from the ignorant.’ The perfect man, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) was badly persecuted and verbally abused but this embodiment of forgiveness prayed for his enemies instead. In accordance with God’s promise his detractors met the sorry end that was predicted for them and none could harm the Prophet’s (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) honour. In spite of continuous persecution of himself and his Companions, when he attained power he demonstrated a peerless model of forgiveness. Any fair-minded historian could not deny that the Prophet’s (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) attribute of forgiveness and fortitude was unequalled.

Abdullah ibn Abi bin Salool was the head of the hypocrites who appeared to obey the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) but did not desist from making filthy attacks on him. The reason for his enmity was that the people of Medina were thinking of making him their leader but after the Prophet’s (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) migration all the tribes and people of all religions accepted him as the leader instead. In an incident before the battle of Badr, the quality of forgiveness of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) shone through.

The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) was going to see Sa’ad bin Ubada who was unwell. Along the way he passed by an assembly in which Abdullah bin Salool sat along with Muslims, idol-worshippers and Jews. As the Prophet’s (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) ride passed by some dust flew on the assembly. Abdullah Salool covered his nose and said ‘do not throw dust on us’. In response, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) said his greetings and read some Qur’an to them. Abdullah Salool said, ‘do not bother us, go home and read the Qur’an to whoever comes to your home.’ A Companion who was present said, ‘O Prophet of God, come and read the Qur’an to us in our gatherings.’ People stood up and an argument ensued. The Prophet asked them to quieten down and left. After a while Abdullah Salool became a Muslim but troubled the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) through his hypocritical schemes.

During one expedition a migrant (Makkan Muslim) struck an Ansar’s back with his hand. The Ansar retaliated. Both of them started calling their people for help. Seeing this, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) stopped them from reverting to ignorant times. When Abdullah Salool came to know of this he reacted aggressively in front of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). Hadhrat Umer (may Allah be pleased with him), who was present, stood up and asked the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) if he could cut the man’s head off for the insolence. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) replied, ‘forgive him for people may say that Muhammad even kills his associates.’

The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) heard that Abdullah Salool had said something disagreeable so he asked him for confirmation. He denied and the Prophet did not ask him again. However, God informed the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) through revelation that what he had heard was true. It is thus recorded in the Qur’an: ‘They say, ‘If we return to Medina, the one most honourable will surely drive out therefrom the one most mean;’ (63:9). This left no doubt about what had happened even though the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) already perceived Abdullah Salool to be so. Abdullah Salool’s son was a sincere Muslim, he asked the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) if he could kill his father. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) replied there was no need for that and that he did not intend to punish him but was going to treat his father gently and kindly.

Once Hadhrat ‘Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) was mistakenly left behind a convoy. One Companion noticed her on her own and asleep. He read ‘Inna lillahe wa inna illahihe raji’oon’. She woke up and covered herself. He brought his camel next to her, she mounted it and they met up with the convoy. Later, the very same hypocrites [of Medina] made terrible allegations about Hadhrat ‘Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her). This made the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) very anxious. The allegation about Hadhrat ‘Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) was an attempt to harm the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). Later, he made a speech in which he said he had been given deep hurt regarding his family. Yet, he did not give any prompt punishment to the hypocrites. When God sent the revelation exonerating Hadhrat ‘Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) he still did not punish anyone and pardoned them. When Abdullah Salool died his son asked the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) if he could give one of his tunics in which Salool could be buried. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) gave him a tunic and also led the funeral Prayer of Abdullah Salool. Hadhrat Umer (may Allah be pleased with him) remarked to the Prophet that he knew of everything regarding the hypocrites and also that even if they did Istaghfar (seeking forgiveness) seventy times, it would not be accepted. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) replied that there was leeway in this matter and that he would try and say Istaghfar more than seventy times for Abdullah Salool.

The Bedouins of Arabia did many disgraceful acts in the presence of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). Once, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) had a thick-bordered cloak on. A Bedouin pulled it so fiercely that a mark of the thick border was left on the Prophet’s blessed neck. The Bedouin said to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) ‘load on my two camels with the fortune of God that is in your possession, because it is neither yours nor your father’s.’ The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) remained silent for a while and then said, ‘the fortune is Allah’s, and I am His servant. Do you not think you will be retaliated for the pain you have given me’. ‘No, I do not,’ answered the Bedouin. ‘Why?’ asked the Prophet. The Bedouin said, ‘because you do not react to evil with evil.’ The Prophet laughed and ordered to load the Bedouin’s camels with barley and dates.

Once, eighty men of the Quraish tribe suddenly attacked the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and his Companions as they offered Fajr Salat. They intended to kill. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) forgave them and let them go.

A Jew once passed the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and instead of saying Assalamoalaikum said Assamo alaik (may you be destroyed). The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) understood what he had said and although his Companions wished to retaliate, the Prophet stopped them thus leaving a message that his compassion was for everyone. He only punished where Divine commandments were breached. Once a Jewish woman poisoned the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and his Companions and in spite of her confession, he forgave her.

Wahshi [ibn Harb, an enemy of Islam] heard that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) did not seek reprisal from envoys, so he went to see him with some envoys from Taif. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) asked him if he was Wahshi which he confirmed, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) then asked if he had killed Hadhrat Hamza. Again, he said yes. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) asked him the details of how he had killed his uncle and wept as he related the incident. He then forgave him but said if it was possible, could he not come in front of him again.

After the victory of Makkah, an order was given to kill Ikrama, a war criminal and a then extreme enemy of Islam. Ikrama flew towards Yemen when he heard of this. Meanwhile, his wife accepted Islam and chased after him. She found him by the coast about to board a boat. She brought him back by telling him that she had just come from the best among all people and that she had sought refuge for him. Ikrama returned and asked the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) if this was true. When the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) confirmed this, Ikrama recited the Shahadah and hung his head in shame. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) forgave all his transgressions and prayed, ‘O’ Allah, forgive every hurt that Ikrama caused me.’

Hudhur read Durud at this point: Bless O’ Allah Muhammad and the people of Muhammad as You did bless Abraham and the people of Abraham. You are indeed the Praiseworthy, the Glorious. Prosper O’ Allah Muhammad and the people of Muhammad as You did prosper Abraham and the people of Abraham. You are indeed the Praiseworthy, the Glorious.

Once, a man came to Ka’ba where the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) was performing the circuits. The man intended to kill the Prophet who was informed by God of his plan. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) summoned the man to him, who became perturbed. When asked why he had come there, the man started making excuses. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) smiled and placed his hand on the man’s chest. All the hatred in the man’s heart was removed and the affectionate touch released a sea of love in him. Such was the treatment of our master with his enemies. He subdued his enemies with love. He did not ever take revenge for any wrong committed against his own person apart from instances where God’s commandments were violated. Hadhrat Umer (may God be pleased with him) once said, ‘O Prophet of God, my parents be sacrificed on you, Hadhrat Nuh (peace be on him) thus prayed for his people: ‘…‘My Lord, leave not in the land a single one of the disbelievers;’ (71:27) But O Prophet of God, had you prayed in the same way about us, all of us would have been destroyed.’ The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) had of course thus prayed: ‘O Allah forgive my people for they do not know what they do’.

Such was the attribute of forgiveness of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). It seemed unlikely to the detractors but when they experienced it, they accepted Islam. If only the Muslims today understood this point, they can help Islam advance manifold. If only they reflected on this blessed model. May God give them the sense to do so.

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