God states in the Holy Qur’an: ‘O ye who believe! respond to Allah, and the Messenger when he calls you that he may give you life…’ (8:25)
Indeed, God sends His Prophets to give spiritual life to people and through the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) He sent us the complete and perfect Shariah in the form of the Holy Qur’an and made the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) its embodiment. This was felt by those who were close to him, the closer a person was to him the greater was his perception of this. More than anyone the Holy Prophet’s (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) wives were witness to his high morals and when Hazrat ‘Aishah was once questioned about him, her reply was that he was an embodiment of the Holy Qur’an. He practiced whatever the Holy Qur’an states.
Prophets of God are role models and in the aforementioned verse by mentioning God in conjunction with Prophets it has been made clear that they say and do whatever God states. Prophets of God should be followed blindly to attain spiritual life and of course it is stated about the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) that it is essential to follow him in order to attain love of God, and true spiritual life can only be attained through love of God!
Unless Muslims truly accept what the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) had announced: ‘…If you love Allah, follow me: then will Allah love you…’ (3:32) they cannot be termed as true followers and true believers. Indeed, as Hazrat ‘Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said the explanation of his practices can be found in the Holy Qur’an. The Holy Qur’an which states that even the enmity of a people should not incite you to act other than with justice; the Qur’an states do not shed blood without reason; the Qur’an states that dues of mankind should be paid; the Qur’an states that the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) was mercy for all the peoples. As indeed the quality of Rahmaniyyat (being gracious) demands that it is without distinction of religion and race and is for one and all. Thus the Holy Qur’an refutes all the objections which are raised by people when they see the wrong acts of some Muslims these days.
Prophets of God come to give life but the practices of Muslims today are devoid of life and their acts are heightened to practically end human life. They kill innocents and widows. Huzoor said that if anyone asks him, as indeed they often do, Huzoor tells them that God and His Messenger gave the answer to their questions in the beginning of Islam. As the verses of Surah Jumu’ah in the Holy Qur’an state: ‘He it is Who has raised among the Unlettered people a Messenger from among themselves who recites unto them His Signs, and purifies them, and teaches them the Book and wisdom, although they had been, before, in manifest misguidance; And among others from among them who have not yet joined them. He is the Mighty, the Wise.’(62:3-4) The ‘manifest misguidance’ which is apparent from the acts of Muslims today was also rampant in the time of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and he was sent to remove it and to give the life-infusing message of Islam. And now in order to spread the life-infusing message the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) has been sent and after coming in his Bai’at the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is now taking this message further, as is its responsibility.
The Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) made it very clear that the religious leaders of Islam will one day be the worst of creation, as indeed are the acts of Muslims today. And it was said that this will be the time when the Promised Messiah will descend. We observe that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) claimed that he had brought life-giving water and those who accepted him attained the spiritual life that the water gave.
The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said: ‘The verse: ‘…And among others from among them who have not yet joined them…’ (62:4) means that there are only two parties who will attain guidance and wisdom after manifest misguidance and witness the blessings and miracles of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him). Firstly, the Companions of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) who were embroiled in darkness before his advent and later, with the grace of God Almighty, they experienced the time of the Prophet and witnessed miracles with their own eyes and observed fulfilment of prophecies. Belief brought about a change in them and they became as if of one spirit. The other party which is like the Companions according to the aforementioned verse is the party of the Promised Messiah. Like the Companions, this party also is to witness the miracles of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and is to find guidance after darkness and misguidance. In the verse this party has been given a measure of the blessing of being likened to the Companions. This indicates that just as the Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) saw the miracles of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and witnessed the fulfilment of his prophecies, so will these people. The intermediate period will not have a complete measure of this blessing. Thus, exactly this is what happened nowadays and after thirteen hundred years, once again the door to the miracles of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) reopened and people witnessed them with their own eyes.’
He also said: ‘Everyone has personally witnessed the spread of the plague and restrictions placed on going to Hajj. Introduction of the railways in the country and the camels made redundant, all these were the miracles of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) which have been witnessed in this era just as the Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) witnessed miracles. This is why Allah the Exalted termed this latter-days party as ‘…from among them…’ so that it may indicate that they are like the Companions as far as observance of miracles is concerned. Think about it! Who else has experienced a time in the precept of Prophethood in the last thirteen hundred years! There are many reasons for our community to be likened to the Companions (may Allah be pleased with them). They witness miracles and signs just as the Companions did, they are suffering from the grief of derision, mockery, cursing and all manner of hurt, abuse and cutting off of ties in the way of God as the Companions did. They continue to attain pure life from God’s evident signs, heavenly succour and teaching of wisdom, just as the Companions did. Many among them weep during Salat and moisten their places of prostration with tears, just as the Companions (may Allah be pleased with them) wept’! (Tafseer the Promised Messiah – Vol. 4, pp. 329-330)
The Promised Messiah’s (on whom be peace) claim that he had come to give life to the world was fulfilled with great glory and continues to be fulfilled. Now it is only possible to understand Word of God through the Promised Messiah whose task it is to disseminate knowledge of the Holy Qur’an. People are attaining spiritual life through him, indeed they can attain it through him. After fourteen hundred years, he exhibited a model of being a perfect follower of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and absorbed himself totally in his love. This beneficence continues to this day but those who raise objections at Islam do not look at it, whereas, wrong actions of Muslims garner a deluge of objections and anti-Islam propaganda.
Recently an Ahmadi wrote to Huzoor about a conversation he had had with a well- educated Christian friend. He told him about the beautiful teaching of Islam and the services rendered by Khilafat and the Jama’at. The friend wondered why we did not inform the media about this, why the world was not told about this and why newspapers did not carry the news. The Ahmadi told him that of course we inform others about our work, we have Tabligh and we distribute leaflets, now in their millions, we advertise on buses and have other different programmes but the media does not cover all this in the way it covers negative news about Islam. The Christian friend said that the media is on the lookout for sensational news and since anti-Islamic feelings are common, they only cover negative things about Islam and avoid presenting facts!
Huzoor said recently he was interviewed by a BBC correspondent. The interview was quite long and they broadcasted parts of it in a documentary on BBC Asia yesterday. It will either be broadcast on Saturday or begin to be broadcast on BBC World Service Radio. They have included Huzoor’s remark that the beautiful teaching of Islam as presented by the Jama’at is the true teaching of Islam and this is why hundreds of thousands of people are joining the Jama’at. They did not broadcast everything Huzoor said and chose to transmit a selection of Huzoor’s remarks saying that people are joining because they find out the true teaching of Islam and after hearing the life-giving message of Islam, they are drawn to it. There is no deficiency in the teaching of Islam and the blessed model of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him), in fact they are both complete and perfect. The fault lies with the religious scholars who mislead people and those who follow them. If Prophets of God did not give life, then confidence in God would also be removed. Religions devoid of life have mere claims to offer and there is nothing life-infusing about them anymore. This is why people are forsaking those religions and only keep a ceremonial connection with no element of faith.
It is a great favour of God on Muslims that He sent His Prophet in this age and revived its teaching so that we may continue to receive spiritual life. Those appointed by God come with the promise that they will take those who will follow them to success and they will be given spiritual life. This indeed was also the promise made to the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace); that he will triumph and his followers will continue to progress. The system of Khilafat will continue to do his task after him and anyone who will rise against it will be unsuccessful and will fail. Khilafat is a blessing of God and cannot be snatched! It is not attained through persecution, through burying innocents alive. Possession of this system cannot be gained through killing people barbarically. It is a source of giving life and not taking life. Any other system which is snatched cannot have Divine succour and never has done!
It should also be remembered that those who accept people sent from God also have to give sacrifices. They are prepared for every kind of sacrifice because they know their sacrifice would never go in vain and at times they sacrifice their physical life for the sake of spiritual life. There were people in the time of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) who gave sacrifice of family, relatives, wealth, business even life! Yet, they did not allow death to overcome their spiritual life. Even today there are hundreds of thousands who happily give the sacrifice of sentiments, wealth, relations and in some places also sacrifice of life. Some accept the life-giving message of Ahmadiyyat, true Islam and are faced with adversities and troubles. Yet, they do not care and give preference to their spiritual lives to their physical lives. There are numerous examples of people who endure such troubles and Huzoor presented a few today.
Usama ud Din Sahib from an Arab county has told that he and his wife belonged to the Tablighi Party and used to go on tours. After watching MTA he believed in the message of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) finding it truthful and life-giving. His wife became vehemently opposed to him and turned his family as well as the Maulawis against him. On the say-so of the Maulawis she got a fatwa of disbelief passed against him from Al Azhar and they were separated with their Nikah annulled. His family put a lot of pressure on him to leave the Jama’at but he did not take any notice. He was separated from his four children but stayed firm on his Bai’at. He says that he realised the reality of exclusion and was reminded of the saying of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) that Islam began in a state of exclusion and will ultimately be excluded again. Thus blessed are the excluded. He says God has given him refuge and has taken care of him and he prays not to stumble and InshaAllah remain steadfast.
In a region of Tanzania, east Africa, many Bai’ats were received and 90% of people who worshipped at a village mosque became Ahmadi. Bakwata, a Tanzanian Muslim organisation which is considered as representative of Islam started severe opposition of the new Ahmadis. Firstly they harassed and threatened them. Our mu’allim (tutor/teacher) was present in the village, so the faith of the new Ahmadis grew stronger. A stage came when the opponents stopped them from offering Salat in the mosque. Ahmadis organised an alternate place to offer Salat. The local government joined the local police officer who was a Sunni Muslim and started harassing the Ahmadis. They imprisoned the mu’allim and then released him. Again, they imprisoned him along with a few Ahmadi on false charges. With God’s grace they stayed firm of faith although times were extremely difficult.
In Burkina Faso, west Africa, five hundred Bai’ats were received last year including that of the village chief and the Imam. Their close relatives who lived in nearby villages started opposing them and organised social boycott of the new Ahmadis. They stopped all kind of contact. The Ahmadis used to offer Salat in a small place but they were stopped from doing so and the opposition intensified. Yet, with the grace of God, these new Ahmadis who hail from far flung areas and are apparently known as illiterate did not take any notice of the opposition and safeguarded their faith and now God has eased their situation.
As the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) said everyone has to go through hardships and there are countless examples of this. Huzoor recounted current examples to illustrate how quickly faith is growing among people making them ready for every kind of sacrifice. People from different countries recognise the message of Ahmadiyyat, true Islam and thus put in order their spiritual lives. This cannot come to pass without Divine help. Indeed, Divine help is with those commissioned by God to facilitate this. Mu’allims too cannot do their task without Divine succour. It is indeed Divine succour which prepares one for sacrifice and grants resolve and fortitude. There are also some Pakistani around the world who accept Ahmadiyyat and meet Huzoor in various places. They too face difficulties. Each time Huzoor tells them that they may have to face difficulties and endure hardship, they would not be able to go to Pakistan or face trouble on their visit, they say that they have reached their decision after due deliberation and InshaAllah will remain steadfast.
It is also the way of the world that in order to attain any objective one has to work hard and sacrifice. Indeed, for higher objectives greater sacrifice is needed. Sacrifice for eternal spiritual life is continuous, however, at times God confers in amazing ways on those who are ever ready for sacrifices without any sacrifice. If man shows even a small measure of Divine attributes on human level, he can confer on others, whereas God gives without measure and even rewards good intention. Huzoor related a worldly tale/parable of human sacrifice and reward.
A Persian king with his wazir (official/minister) passed an old farmer who was planting fruit tree and due to his age it was clear that its fruit would not benefit him. The king asked him, ‘will this tree benefit you?’ The farmer replied, ‘they planted before us and we ate. Therefore we plant so others can eat.’ The king was impressed and signalled to his wazir to give a bag of gold coins to the farmer as a reward. The farmer said, ‘the tree has given fruit even while it is being planted.’ This impressed the king again and he signalled his wazir to give another bag of gold coins to the farmer. Upon this the farmer said, ‘a tree is ready to bear fruit after many years and does so once a year, but my tree has given fruit twice while still being planted.’ Impressed yet again, the king signalled the wazir to give the farmer yet another bag of gold coins and added, ‘let us leave or this farmer may take all our coins!’ While worldly kings confer on others, they are also afraid of their treasures diminishing. However, our God continues to confer and after granting spiritual life grants eternal life. And for this sacrifices like the sacrifice of the old farmer planting fruit tree are needed; sacrifices the fruits and benefits of which are not instant and apparent but have great hidden benefits.
Followers of Prophets of God also give sacrifice based on these principles and they and their communities are successful while the others are disgraced by God. The disciples of Jesus (on whom be peace) were persecuted for three centuries and they endured cruelty with patience and fortitude and continued to give sacrifices until the king of Rome accepted Christianity and this brought about freedom for them. They spent the difficult times hiding in caves. Just as those early Christians hid in mountainous caves to keep their faith alive while firm in the belief that they will have freedom one day, similarly, today the followers of the Muhammadan Messiah are convinced, more than the early Christians, of their ultimate triumph. We too have to safeguard our faith wherever difficulties are faced and have to continuously seek the beneficence of the spiritual water that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) gave us. The early Christians hid behind rocks to safeguard their faith and gave sacrifices, we have to strengthen our faith as hard as the rocks and have to prove that the Promised Messiah’s beneficence still prevails and that the task of one commissioned by God is to infuse new life, to strengthen faith and this we have to achieve under all circumstances in the perfect belief that triumph is destined for the Jama’at of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace). Each one of us should realise that they have to be a part of this triumph and in spite of all difficulties make efforts for our own lives and for the lives of others.
The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) wrote: ‘The days are approaching, nay they are near at hand, when only this religion shall be spoken of with honour and respect. God shall grant this religion and this Movement His choicest blessings and unprecedented success and frustrate the designs of all those who seek to destroy them and shall perpetuate their ascendancy till the time the world comes to its end. They jeer at me now but their jeering shall cause no harm, for there has not been a Prophet who has not been jeered at. It was, therefore, incumbent that the Promised Messiah be also jeered at, as God Almighty says: ‘Alas for mankind! There comes not a Messenger to them but they mock at him.’ ( 36:31 ). It is, therefore, a Sign from God; because every Prophet has been mocked at. Who would laugh at a person who comes down from heaven with a host of angels? Even from this one could understand that the story of Messiah coming down from heaven is no more than a myth.
Remember very well that no one will descend from heaven. All our opponents who live today shall die and none of them shall ever see Jesus son of Mary coming down from heaven; then their children that are left after them shall also die and none from among them shall ever see Jesus son of Mary coming down from heaven and then their third generation shall also die and they too shall not see the son of Mary coming down. Then God shall cause great consternation in their hearts, yet the son of Mary has not come down. Then in dismay the wise among them shall forsake this belief and three centuries from now shall not have passed when those who await the coming of Jesus son of Mary, whether they be Muslims or Christians, shall relinquish altogether this conception. Then shall prevail only one religion over the whole world and there shall be only one religious Leader. I came only to sow the seed which has been planted by my hand. It shall now grow and flourish and there is none who can hinder its growth.’ (The Narrative of Two Martyrdoms) http://www.alislam.org/books/tadhkiratush%20shahadatain/wordadvc.html
Huzoor said in this post today he read about our boys distributing leaflets, either in Germany or some other European country. The leaflets were about the advent of the Messiah. At one place the boys met some men who told them that they had been discussing about the advent of the Messiah and wondered if he was come down from the heavens why had he not done so and if another Messiah was to come where and how he would arrive! It was during their discussion that Ahmadi boys gave them the leaflets and also an invitation to an exhibition. They said they would definitely come. This is how God opens new avenues and is putting the quest for truth in people’s hearts.
May God always keep us as a part of the flourishing tree and may our belief be as strong as rocks and may we always fulfil our responsibility!