Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Ebrahim (as)

Ebrahim (AS) had many trials and tests that he had to face in his life. The hardest of all being the sacrificing of his son whom he was gifted with at a very late stage in his life. Ismail (AS) was given the title Zabihullah (The Sacrifice of Allah) because of the trial that his father had to face.

‎وَفَدَيْنَاهُ بِذِبْحٍ عَظِيمٍ

S37V107 And We ransomed him with a tremendous sacrifice.

"Isma" in Hebrew means to hear and "il" means for Allah. He was named as such because Allah (SWT) heard the call of his parents to grant them a child. In Hebrew the name is Shimaeel.

When Ebrahim (AS) prayed to Allah (SWT) he wanted a son of certain qualities.

‎رَبِّ هَبْ لِي مِنَ الصَّالِحِينَ

S37V100 [And he prayed:] “O my Sustainer! Bestow upon me the gift of [a son who shall be] one of the righteous!” –

‎فَبَشَّرْنَاهُ بِغُلَامٍ حَلِيمٍ

S37V101 whereupon We gave him the glad tiding of a boy-child gentle [like himself]?

Allah (SWT) has asked us to remember this prophet Ismail (AS) by the 2 qualities that he possessed and to practice upon them like he did.

‎وَاذْكُرْ فِي الْكِتَابِ إِسْمَاعِيلَ إِنَّهُ كَانَ صَادِقَ الْوَعْدِ وَكَانَ رَسُولًا نَّبِيًّا

S19V54 And call to mind, through this divine writ, Ishmael. Behold, he was always true to his promise, and was an apostle [of God], a prophet,

‎وَكَانَ يَأْمُرُ أَهْلَهُ بِالصَّلَاةِ وَالزَّكَاةِ وَكَانَ عِندَ رَبِّهِ مَرْضِيًّا

S19V55 who used to enjoin upon his people *prayer and charity*, and found favour in his Sustainer´s sight.

Apart from his great qualities, Ismail (AS) was also known as a master marksman. He was phenomenal at archery and could hunt accurately on horseback.

It is understood that he once complained to Allah (SWT) of the extreme heat in Makkah. Allah (SWT) answered him by assuring that a window from heaven would be opened in his grave. Subhanallah! May Allah also favour is in the same way in our graves. Insha Allah.

So going back to the time of the desert where Hajira and Ismail (AS) made this area their home. After the tribe of Jurhum came to settle down near the Zam Zam well as we learned from the previous story of Ebrahim (AS), when Ismail (AS) grew up to be a young man, he was offered a wife from the tribe of Jurhum. Her name was Sadaa bint Sa'd.

They lived together for a time and one day Ebrahim (AS) decided to depart from Sarah as he sometimes did on occasion to visit Hajira and Ismail (AS) in Makkah.

On reaching Ismail (AS)'s home, Ismail (AS) was out hunting so Ebrahim (AS) approached as a stranger. His wife was rude, she spoke to him harshly and did not want to offer him lodging at their home. She complained that they were living in difficulty and poverty. To this, Ebrahim (AS) instructed Ismail (AS) to divorce her because of her ingratitude which displeased him and so he complied with the wish of his father.

His second wife was Ri'lah bint Mudad Ibn Umar. Again Ebrahim (AS) one day visited as a stranger. Although they were in the same condition as previously she was courteous, offered him hospitality and was content with her life. Despite their challenges and poverty situation, she was happy and in comfort. To this Ebrahim (AS) was overjoyed with her beautiful character and prayed to Allah (SWT) to bless their food and drink.

Ismail (AS) was granted prophethood for the last 60 years of his life. He was given the duty of guiding the people of Amalika in Yemen.

Ismail (AS) first ordered his wife, then his children, relatives and nation to perform prayers and give zakah to the poor.

There is a great lesson to be taken from his attitude.

Man needs to guide and improve himself first. Then, he needs to guide and improve his family, relatives, clan and nation respectively.

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