Rejection of God’s Prophets – Final Part

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Refutations of all charges against God’s Prophets

God has refuted all the charges and calumnies levelled by disbelievers against the Prophets. In defence of the Holy Prophet(saw) and, by extension, all other Prophets since they all share similar objections from their peoples and in answer to the general objection by disbelievers through the ages on the humanity and mortality of Prophets, God says:

And We sent none as Messengers before thee, but men to whom We sent revelation. So ask those who are well versed in scriptures, if you know not. And We did not give them bodies that ate no food, nor were they to live forever. (Ch.21:Vs.8-9)

Also God says in relation to Jesus(as):

The Messiah, son of Mary, was no more than a Messenger; surely, Messengers like unto him had indeed passed away before him. And his mother was righteous. Both of them used to eat food. (Ch.5: V.76)

On the age-long request by disbelievers for angels as Messengers, God the All-Wise says:

And they say: ‘Why has not an angel been sent down to him?’ But if We had sent down an angel, the matter would have been settled, and then they would not have been granted a respite. And if We had appointed as Messenger an angel, We would have made him appear as a man; and thus We would have made confused to them what they are themselves confusing. (Ch.6: Vs.9-10)

In several places in the Qur’an God debunked the charge of forgery made by disbelievers against His Prophets (Ch.25:V.5). As to those who alleged that Messengers of God have forged the revelation sent through them and demanded proof of authenticity, God declares:

And if We had sent down to thee a writing upon parchment and they had felt it with their hands, even then the disbelievers would have surely said, ‘This is nothing but manifest sorcery.’ (Ch.6:V.8)

The fact is that no matter what the Prophets say or do, the disbelievers will never believe, since the warnings delivered by Prophets hit at the very root of their prosperity, power and self-esteem and they are so far gone astray that they have lost all God-consciousness! There is little the Prophets can do to make them change their mind, unless it pleases God to intervene. Alluding to this category of human beings, God says:

And there comes not to them any Sign of the Signs of their Lord, but they turn away from it. (Ch.6:V.5)

As if to reassure the Holy Prophet(saw) and believers who may be perturbed by the disbelief of these unfortunate people, God says:

And We sent Messengers before you among various denominations of earlier people. And there never came to them any Messenger but they mocked at him. Thus do We cause this habit of mocking to enter into the hearts of the sinful people; they believe not therein, though the example of the former peoples has gone before them. And even if We opened to them a door from heaven, and they began ascending through it, they would surely say, ‘Only our eyes are dazed; rather we are a bewitched people.’ (Ch.15:Vs.11-16).

In other words, the disbelievers among every people, are already doomed to reject truth even when they see it, however much the Prophets desire it, and it is this obduracy that has, through the ages, earned them perdition and destruction.

Repercussions for Rejection of God’s Prophets

The repercussion for the rejection of Prophets of God has been calamity. As if to remind mankind of this fact, God says:

Then We sent Our Messengers one after another. Every time there came to a people their Messenger, they treated him as a liar. So We made them follow one another to destruction and We made them mere tales. Cursed, then, be the people who believe not! (Ch.23: V.45)

In the first place, God Almighty was not going to allow His Divine purpose to be thwarted, or have His chosen Messengers disgraced and prevented from achieving their God-given mandate. The Qur’an says:

Never sent We a Messenger or a Prophet before thee, but when he sought to attain what he aimed at, Satan put obstacles in the way of what he sought after. But Allah removes the obstacles that are placed by Satan. Then Allah firmly establishes His Signs. And Allah is All-Knowing, Wise. (Ch.22: V.53)

Therefore, opposition to Prophets was doomed to fail. The people of Noah(as), Hud(as), Salih(as), Shu‘aib(as), etc, one after the other, met a disastrous end while those who believed among them were saved. The disbelievers among the people of Noah(as) were drowned (Ch.7:V.65; Ch.10:V.74), while those of the people of Hud(as) were eradicated by an earthquake (Ch.7:V.73; Ch.11:V.61). They were followed by the tribe of Thamud who were in turn also destroyed by an earthquake while they slept (Ch.11:V.68). Another quake which rained stones and clay destroyed Lot’s people. Historians have likened the earthquake which destroyed these unfortunate people to the one which destroyed Pompeii. For the Midians who rejected Shu‘aib(as), exactly the same fate as the Thamud befell them.

The Children of Israel witnessed several punishments including the destruction of Jerusalem in 556 BCE during the time of Prophet Ezekiel(as) by the Babylonian Nebuchadnezzar who carried them into captivity  (Bible, 2Kings 24:10). Although Cyrus the Great, helped to restore the Israelites to Jerusalem, once again in 70 CE, the Roman Emperor Titus captured Jerusalem and destroyed the Temple. Long before these Divine punishments, the land of the Children of Israel had been ravaged in 1256 BCE by the Midianites as a result of which they were compelled to abandon their homes and take refuge in caves (Bible, Judges 6:1-6).

There was no general punishment for the idolaters of Makkah and indeed the people of Arabia among whom the Holy Prophet(saw) was raised, for they later accepted him and largely abandoned their idol worship and evil ways. It is a fact of history that following the bloodless conquest of Makkah by the Muslims led by the Holy Prophet(saw), thousands of Arabs converted to Islam. Nevertheless, specific individuals who opposed the Holy Prophet(saw)’s mission were destroyed one after the other. Examples include Abu Jahl, the leader of the Quraish in Makkah who met his end in the Battle of Badr along with other Quraishi leaders; ‘Abd Al ‘Uzza also known in history as Abu Lahab, the hot-tempered uncle and enemy of the Holy Prophet(saw), died ignominiously along with his infamous wife. ‘Abdullah bin Ubayy was the leader of the hypocrites in Madinah whose ambition to become the ruler of the city was frustrated by the Holy Prophet(saw)’s arrival. This turned him into a bitter enemy of Islam and the Holy Prophet(saw). Following his evil machinations and hypocrisy, he eventually died in ignominy. A Christian monk going by the name Abu ‘Amir, who was an enemy of Islam, had to flee to Syria where he still continued his nefarious activities, hoping to enlist the help of the Byzantines against the Holy Prophet(saw). He died in disgrace in Syria shortly after, a broken-hearted wretch.

This brings us to the modern epoch exemplified by the opposition of the people of India and present day Pakistan to Hadhrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad(as) of Qadian. Before his declaration of prophethood, he was already widely known as an upright and pious Champion of Islam well respected by other leaders of Islam. The publication of his seminal treatise in the defence of Islam, Barahin-e-Ahmadiyya, which gained wide approval, enhanced his standing among Islamic scholars and mainstream Muslims. Muhammad Hussain, leader of the Ahl-e-Hadith, praised the book in the following words:

‘This book in our opinion has no parallel in our time and in view of the circumstances and needs of our time, there has not been another one like it in the entire history of Islam.’

On the author, he had this to say:

‘We should also be told of two or more friends of Islam who have resolved to serve Islam in the same way, with purse and pen and with speech and silence; whose lives are similarly devoted; who are able to manfully challenge the enemies of Islam and the deniers of revelation to come and witness these experiences…’3

Muhammad Hussain later led the opposition to Hadhrat Ahmad(as) and devoted the rest of his life denouncing him as a ‘kafir and a liar’ just like the chief of the Makkans had labelled the Holy Prophet(saw). Objections to Hadhrat Ahmad(as) include his claim that Jesus(as) had died a natural death, contrary to the belief shared by Christians and orthodox Muslims. There was also the objection to the claim on the continuity of revelation and the advent of non-law bearing Prophets after Prophet Muhammad(saw), a major point of contention with orthodox Muslims who hold that the Holy Prophet(saw) is the ‘last Prophet after whom there would be none ever again.’ He was also charged with denying the institution of Jihad. All these issues had been dealt with by Hadhrat Ahmad(as) in his books with clear arguments supported copiously by references from the Qur’an and the authentic Hadiths of the Holy Prophet(saw).

Suffice it to say that on the basis of these charges and objections and in spite of the widely publicised rebuttal, many in the Indian subcontinent rejected his prophethood as an obedient servant of Muhammad(saw). Not only did the ‘Ulama (clerics) issue fatwas (edicts) labelling him a kafir (disbeliever), even after his demise in 1908, members of the community he established – the Ahmadiyya Muslim community – have continued to face persecution at the hands of ordinary unenlightened Pakistanis. This task has especially been undertaken by religious fanatics, exemplified by groups like Khatme Nabuwwat and Jama‘at-i-Islami led by Maulana Maududi whose stated goal was to unify all Pakistani Muslims under a common cause of excommunicating Ahmadis from Pakistan5.

In 1974, under Prime Minister Bhutto, the government of Pakistan effected an amendment to the country’s constitution declaring Ahmadis as ‘non-Muslims’ allegedly because they do not accept Prophet Muhammad(saw) as the ‘last Prophet.’4 All the rights and liberties that were enshrined in the 1956 constitution by the founding fathers of Pakistan were in one fell swoop rolled back5. In 1984, President Zia-ul-Haq enacted his infamous Ordinance XX which amended the Pakistani Penal Code (PPC) by adding sections that restricted the freedom of expression by religious minorities, especially with specific reference to the Ahmadiyya Community. This ordinance prohibits Ahmadis from ‘calling themselves Muslims or posing as Muslims and calling their faith Islam.’ It also made defiling the Holy Qur’an or the name of the Holy Prophet(saw) subject to the death penalty, life imprisonment and heavy fines4. Later in 1991, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif made the death penalty the mandatory punishment for the so-called blasphemy against the name of the Holy Prophet(saw)4. The effect of all this legislation is the increasing spiral of violence against Ahmadis. Their homes, businesses and persons can be attacked and destroyed with impunity. Ahmadis are routinely subjected to murder, wrongful arrest and imprisonment, intimidation and harassment.

A town solely founded and developed by the Jama‘at near Chiniot and named Rabwah in 1947 and to which the Community moved its headquarters from Qadian, was forcefully taken over and officially renamed Chenab Nagar by the government in 1999. Repeated attempts, both subtle and brazen, have been made by the Mullahs to chase out Ahmadis, so much so that many emigrated to practise their religion freely following the age-old tradition of believers of Prophets who faced similar persecution on the basis of their faith. Several international human rights agencies have issued statements and written reports condemning these acts and especially the failure of successive Pakistani governments to repeal the laws being exploited by fanatics. Yet discerning observers have also begun to see a repeat of history of the fate of past rejecters of Prophets of God.

All the major active players in the Ahmadi persecution are being visited by unexplained disasters that cannot be taken as coincidences; and the trend continues. Yet, lessons are not being learned. These attacks have not abated; on May 28 2010, two Ahmadi Mosques in Lahore were attacked during Friday prayers in which 86 Ahmadis were killed in cold blood, attracting international outrage and condemnation6. The people of this embattled land should pause and reflect. Allah reminds us again:

Surely, there have been many dispensations before you; so travel through the earth and see how evil was the end of those who treated the Prophets as liars. (Ch.3:V.138)

We can only hope and pray that the people of Pakistan will follow the advice God made the Holy Prophet(saw) give to the Makkans:

Say to those who disbelieve, if they desist, that which is past will be forgiven them; and if they return thereto, then verily, the example of the former peoples has already gone before them. (Ch.8:V.39)

May God, the Merciful, touch the hearts of their leaders and open the eyes of the Mullahs and their followers to see the light and retrace their steps before it is too late. The warnings are clear; anyone who takes on a Messenger of God will have to contend with God.

References

1. Hadhrat Mirza Bashiruddin Mahmud Ahmad, Invitation to Ahmadiyyat, Islam International Publications Ltd, India (2009).

2. Iain Adamson, Ahmad – the Guided One, Islam International Publications Ltd, India (2009).

3. Ishaat al-Sunnah, VI, p.7, quoted in Invitation to Ahmadiyyat by Hadhrat Mirza Bashir-ud-Din Mahmud Ahmad.

4. Rabwah: A Place for Martyrs – Report of the U.K. Parliamentary Human Rights Group Mission to Pakistan into Internal Flights by Ahmadis by Dr. Jonathan Ensor. Parts I, II & III. The Review of Religions, Vol. 102 Nos. 03, 04 & 05, March, April & May 2007.

5. Amjad Mahmood Khan, Persecution of Ahmadiyya Community in Pakistan – Analysis under International Law and International Relations, The Review of Religions, Vol.98 No.6, June 2003.

6. Humda Malik, Ahmadi Muslims Face Steady Persecution in Pakistan http://www.edmontonjournal.com/news/Ahmadi Muslims.

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