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Uzair (AS) “Ezra” – Part 1:

 

 

 

In the name of Allah, The Most Merciful The Most Compassionate. Peace and Blessings be upon our master, the most noble Prophet Muhammad. We praise Allah (SWT), thank Him, and seek His help, guidance and forgiveness. We seek refuge in Allah (SWT) from the evil in our souls and the sinfulness of our deeds. “He whom Allah guides, he is the rightly guided; but he whom He sends astray, for him you will find no guiding advocate”.

 

 

 

Uzair (Ezra) (AS) is a Prophet that has not been mentioned in Qur’an but in few occasions. In spite of the fact that his story is not a famous one, it is highly significant. Let us now read in Surat al-Baqarah what can be translated as, “Or like the one who passed by a town while it had tumbled over its roofs. He said: “Oh! How will Allah ever bring it to life after its death?” So Allah caused him to die for a hundred years, then raised him up (again). He said: “How long did you remain (dead)?” He (the man) said: “(Perhaps) I remained (dead) a day or part of a day”. He said: “Nay, you have remained (dead) for a hundred years, look at your food and your drink, they show no change; and look at your donkey! And thus We have made of you a sign for the people. Look at the bones, how We bring them together and clothe them with flesh”. When this was clearly shown to him, he said, “I know (now) that Allah is Able to do all things.” (TMQ, 2:259).[1]

 

 

 

This verse lies between two verses. The first one is verse number 258 and it can be translated as, “Have you not looked at him who disputed with Ibrahim (Abraham) about his Lord (Allah), because Allah had given him the kingdom? When Ibrahim said (to him): “My Lord (Allah) is He Who gives life and causes death.” He said, “I give life and cause death.” Ibrahim said, “Verily! Allah brings the sun from the east; then bring it you from the west.” So the disbeliever was utterly defeated. And Allah guides not the people, who are Zâlimûn (wrong-doers)” (TMQ, 2:258).

 

 

 

The second one can be translated as, “And (remember) when Ibrahim said, “My Lord! Show me how You give life to the dead.” He (Allah) said: “Do you not believe?” He [ibrahim] said: “Yes (I believe), but to be stronger in Faith” (TMQ, 2:260)

 

 

 

The verses as you see create a harmonious theme that serves one single fact that Allah (SWT) wants to teach us. Today’s lesson depends on a great concept referred to in these three verses that compose three different stories. Moreover, we notice the correlation between the verses. Verse number 259 begins with “or” and verse number 260 begins with “and”, which denotes that very association.

 

 

 

Uzair (AS) is one of Allah’s (SWT) Prophets who came after Musa (AS) (Moses), Dawud (AS) (David), and Solaiman (AS) (Solomon). We mentioned before that the People of israel excelled in arguing and disputing and they have never changed. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) said that Allah (SWT) sent many Prophets to them, that once a Prophet dies, He would send another to them. Therefore, the Children of israel did not live one day without a Prophet since Yaqub (AS) (Jacob) till Isa (AS) (Jesus). It was Allah’s (SWT) mercy to send them so many Prophets. Many of them believed that sending many Prophets was due to their favor with Allah (SWT). On the contrary, this was because they were a nation so far away from Allah (SWT).

 

Furthermore, the Prophet (PBUH) said, “Among the nation of Bani israel who lived before you, there were men who used to be inspired with guidance though they were not Prophets, and if there is any of such persons amongst my followers, it is Omar.”

 

The question you might ask now is: Are they better than us? You see, in the hadith, the Prophet (PBUH) confirmed that there were many inspired people (i.e.: able to predict events as Allah (SW) wished them) in those nations and that very few existed in ours. This is due to the fact that the Prophet (PBUH) has taught us everything we need to know; “This day, I have perfected your religion for you, completed My Favor upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion”(TMQ, 5:3), that we are in no need for that kind of inspired people. Besides, previous nations underwent aberration and needed such guidance while the nation of Islam is pure and accepts truth and goodness instinctively.

 

 

 

Omar Ibn Al-Khattab narrated, “Once a Jew said to me, “O the chief of believers! There is a verse in your Holy Book, which is read by all of you (Muslims), and had it been revealed to us, we would have taken that day (on which it was revealed) as a day of celebration.” Omar Ibn Al-Khattab asked, “Which is that verse?” The Jew replied what can be translated as, “This day I have perfected your religion for you, completed My favor upon you, And have chosen for you Islam as your religion.” (TMQ, 5:3). Omar replied, “No doubt, we know when and where this verse was revealed to the Prophet. It was Friday and the Prophet was standing at ‘Arafat (i.e. the Day of Hajj)” Consequently, our Umma (nation of Islam) is sustained by the perfection of religion as Allah (SWT) set rules to set Muslims firm in their religion and too make them close to each other. For example, the daily five prayers gather Muslims five times a day in Masjids, the Friday prayer gathers them in a weekly meeting, and both Ramadan (Muslim holy month) and Hajj (pilgrimage) unites them every year. Hence, these are permanent rules to keep this nation integrated and unified.

 

 

 

Let’s go back to Uzair (AS), who was sent to the People of israel, as one of the many Prophets sent to them. It was strange indeed when Uzair (PBUH) grew up and lived in a town different from the one he was meant to make da’wa (call to Islam) in. Observe how Allah (SWT) ordered Yunus (AS) (Jonah) not to leave his people, while he ordered Uzair (PBUH) to move to a different town. You see, Allah (SWT) wills what He wants, while we are to implement His orders. This is why we read in the verse what can be translated as, “Or like the one who passed by a town” (TMQ, 2:259), to indicate that the town is not his place of birth. Moreover, the story of Uzair (PBUH) differs from that of other Prophets, since all Prophets were sent by Allah (SWT) to their own people, “Now hath come unto you a Messenger from amongst yourselves”(TMQ, 9:128); unlike Uzair (AS). The Prophets’ mission, including Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), was to start with their neighbors and relatives. However, Allah (SWT) ordered Uzair (AS) to move to another town to make da’wa. So, Uzair (AS) mounted his donkey, taking his food and water, to the place Allah (SWT) commanded. Now I want to clarify the greatness of making da’wa as you leave your home to help a brother or a sister in Islam.

 

 

 

The main aim from narrating the stories of the Prophets here is to encourage you to make da’wa. Did anyone of you try to make da’wa after what you have learned about what the Prophets had to go through? Nuh (AS) spent 1000 years in da’wa: “O my Lord! I have called to my People night and day.”(TMQ, 71:5) Yunus (AS) left his people angrily and went to different people, and that is why he was imprisoned inside a whale’s belly. Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) spent 23 years and bore all the sufferings for the sake of da’wa. Yet, do the people present here right now consider da’wa (calling to Allah (SWT)) their main goal in life? How do you address people when you make da’wa? Do your words match your behavior? One may say: “I do not know enough to make da’wa”. To him I say that it is not necessary to be a scholar as long as you can talk about the little that you already know. The Prophet (PBUH) said that we should narrate from him even if it were one single verse. There are so many ways you could use to make da’wa like telling people about the verses you already know, or like bringing a friend along to our lessons. Does your heart ache for every Muslim that does not pray or for every sister who is not wearing hijab? That should be your motivating force day and night. You should feel that it is your own responsibility to make da’wa for Islam even if you think you do not have the skill to do it yet. You will acquire the skill in time, but you have to try first so that Allah (SWT) helps you.

 

 

 

Uzair (AS) arrived to the appointed town and was stunned to find it empty; no life no plants, and no animals, simply nothing! He wondered why he was sent there in the first place. Allah (SWT) described the town as: “tumbled over its roofs” Contrary to the norm, the roofs in this case collapsed first only to be followed by the walls, due to the immense destruction in the town. I thought about the questions he must have thought of then:. 1- He must have wondered if he is in the right place. But he knew that he followed Allah’s (SWT) description precisely. 2- He must have wondered where the dwellers of the town are and thus decided to look for them. He could not find anybody, nor could he question Allah’s (SWT) orders, so he did not go back. He put his absolute trust in Allah (SWT) and knew that since he was sent to this town, then Allah (SWT) would give life back to it. Compare his attitude to our condition nowadays. He trusted Allah (SWT) and followed his orders. On the other hand, the whole world nowadays is lost, and Allah (SWT) has promised us in this verse saying what can be translated as, “Allah has promised those among you who believe and do righteous good deeds, that He will certainly grant them succession to (the present rulers) in the land”(TMQ, 24:55) Thus, the earth is for Muslims, so do you trust Allah (SWT) and his promise, like Uzair (PBUH) once did?

 

 

 

Let’s go back to the verse in what can be translated as, “Or like the one who passed by a town while it had tumbled over its roofs. He said: “Oh! How will Allah ever bring it to life after its death?” (TMQ, 2:259). Mark that “How” in that context does not indicate impossibility. It rather indicates anticipation as Uzair (PBUH) wanted to see how that will take place. This is very similar to the case when Ibrahim (AS) said what can be translated as, “My Lord! Show me how You give life to the dead.” He (Allah) said: “Do you not believe?” He [ibrahim] said: “Yes (I believe), but to be stronger in Faith” (TMQ, 2:260). He wanted to move from the heart felt level, to the visual sensory level. That is why one verse here follows the other to represent one idea; gathering both the sensory and the spiritual proofs of Allah’s (SWT) might. And here it is important to differentiate between certainty of knowledge and certainty of sight with the latter mentioned in the following verses that can be translated as, “The mutual rivalry (for piling up of worldly things) diverts you. Until you visit the graves (i.e. till you die. Nay! You shall come to know. Again nay! You shall come to know! Nay! If you knew with a sure knowledge (the end result of piling up, you would not have been occupied yourselves in worldly things). Verily, You shall see the blazing Fire (Hell)! And again, you shall see it with certainty of sight! Then on that Day you shall be asked about the delights you indulged in, in this world”)Day of Judgment(“(TMQ, 102:1-8).

 

 

 

So Ibrahim (AS) was asking for that ‘certainty of sight’, a gift bestowed by Allah (SWT) to certain people after years of definite knowledge and strong belief in Him, which is required by every Muslim. Therefore, people who are to have ‘certainty of sight’ are tested for long years and are finally granted it at the end of their lives. It was given to Uzair (AS), to Ibrahim (AS), and to Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Allah (SWT) tested Ibrahim (AS) when he was thrown into fire and when Allah (SWT) ordered him to slaughter his son Isma’il (AS). Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) underwent long years of enormous suffering and anguish to deliver his message. Uzair (AS) had to be sent to an empty town where his belief was tested. Hence, once they succeeded in their tests, Allah (SWT) rewarded them by granting them ‘certainty of sight’. Prophet (PBUH), for example, entered Paradise, saw its rivers, and ate from its fruits in his Mi’raj journey (ascent to heaven).

 

 

 

Furthermore, the Prophet (PBUH) mentioned that to his sahaba (companions) saying: “Who entered Paradise?” Abdullah bin Umar raised his hand replying: “I, O messenger of Allah” So Umar bin Alkhattab put his hand on his head (a mark of discredit) Then the Prophet (PBUH) said: “Who drank from the rivers of Paradise?” Abdullah replied: “I, O messenger of Allah” Umar, his father, then wished he were not in that gathering in the first place (he was embarrassed). After that, the Prophet (PBUH) asked: “Who ate from the fruits of Paradise?” Abdullah raised his hands replying: “I, O messenger of Allah”. The people then looked at him and the Prophet (PBUH) smiled and said: “You said the truth, tell them how you did Abdullah”. Abdullah said: “O messenger of Allah, I had entered paradise, drank from its rivers, and ate from its fruits when you did”. Which kind of certainty was that do you think; ‘certainty of sight’, or definite knowledge?

 

 

 

Moreover, Omar Ibn Al-Khattab perceived ‘certainty of sight’ in a different form when he said, “By Allah, if the heaven was to split in front of me so that I actually see paradise and hellfire, my certainty of their existence would not increase one bit”

 

 

 

Therefore, Uzair (AS) was positive that Allah (SWT) would give life to that town due to his deep belief in Him, and he wanted to strengthen that belief by acquiring ‘certainty of sight’ as he watches the town being brought back to life. How far do you trust Allah (SWT)? Are you confident that He will forgive your sins? Are you positive that He will bring victory to Islam in Palestine by liberating Al-Aqsa Masjid? Do you have Uzair’s (PBUH) conviction who resolved not to go back (leave the empty town) due to his trust in Allah (SWT)?

 

 

 

Uzair (AS) wanted to see Allah’s (SWT) might with his own eyes. Hence, he went to the top of a mountain taking his food and his donkey in order to watch Allah’s (SWT) miracle in this town. You see conviction gives you strength and closeness to Allah (SWT). Thus you are never overcome with fear, you are certain of victory, certain that Allah (SWT) will reveal the truth and annihilate lies, and you are ever proud of being a Muslim. Accordingly, faith keeps you away from despair and moves you to make da’wa in order to help people. Thus, Uzair (AS) wanted to watch the way life will be brought to that town. However, Allah (SWT) sometimes teaches us that things do not necessarily take place as we want them to. For example, sometimes we wonder how Allah (SWT) will bring victory to Muslims in Palestine, so we start imagining certain scenarios in our minds. Yet, Allah (SWT) will bring victory in a different way than we envision in order to assure us that He is The Able as we are given little of his knowledge.

 

 

 

Let me give you an example, the Prophet (PBUH) went to Alta’if (a town close to Makka) on foot and kept walking for100 kilometers only to make da’wa there. It so happened that the people there were so unkind that they hurt him, threw stones at him, and refused to listen to him. Yet, on his way back, he prayed two rakaa’s, only to be heard by some of the jinn, who told the rest of Jinn about what they had heard and these in their turn converted to Islam. Thus, in spite of the fact that his aim was to make da’wa to humans, it was the Jinn who believed. Allah (SWT) accepted his effort but the result did not have to match his main intent. That is to teach us we have to exert effort to be granted victory, but it is Allah (SWT) that gives us victory in the way He chooses. We are demanded to do our best, but everything is accomplished according to Allah’s (SWT) will. Similarly, you might try time and again to make da’wa to help a certain person who would not respond to your efforts, only to find that your efforts helped someone else to see the right path. Moreover, Allah (SWT) trains us not to be conceited by the effort we exert since everything is accomplished by His will.

 

 

 

These words stress on a single idea: it is Allah’s (SWT) will that rules this universe regardless of what we do. So, Uzair (AS) went to the top of the mountain to watch the miracle, but Allah (SWT) revealed it in His way, “So Allah caused him to die for a hundred years, then raised him up (again).” Consequently, the verses 258, 259, and 260 all tackle one main idea, which is that life, death, and resurrection are all controlled by Allah (SWT). This idea has to be fixed in our minds and hearts. Allah (SWT) may will it that we die in our sleep, yet people wait for nighttime to commit their sins. The issue of life and death is essential in our belief since it is the one that should set a believer’s life straight. “So Allah caused him to die for a hundred years, then raised him up (again). He said: “How long did you remain (dead)?” (TMQ, 2:259). There is a controversy about the word “He”, whether it refers to Allah (SWT) or to a revelation to Uzair (AS) through an angel sent by Allah (SWT). “He (the man) said: “(Perhaps) I remained (dead) a day or part of a day”. (TMQ, 2:259). He found that he looked the same. It is said that he was 40 years old, but when he woke up he saw no grey-hair, no wrinkles, and no long nails. He felt that he had a good night’s sleep that is all. Allah (SWT) says what can be translated as, “Nay, you have remained (dead) for a hundred years”. (TMQ, 2:259).

 

 

 

Uzair (AS) was astonished when he saw that the miracle of death and resurrection took place nowhere but in himself. But he kept looking around looking for any sign of change. Allah (SWT) says what can be translated as, “look at your food and your drink, they show no change” (TMQ, 2:259). But the food, the drink, and his own body indicated no change and there had to be a sign that shows him that resurrection actually took place. So Allah (SWT) says what can be translated as, “and look at your donkey!” (TMQ, 2:259). The donkey had disintegrated into bones that were scattered on the ground in a way that indicates that it indeed died 100 years ago. Therefore, Uzair (AS) was before two opposite miracles. Neither did he, or his food or drink have change, yet his donkey was completely distorted. This reveals Allah’s (SWT) dominance over time as He made 100 years pass on Uzair (AS), and his food and drink, as one day, on the one hand, and as the donkey remained in its place for 100 years, on the other.

 

 

 

Accordingly, we have to reflect on two of Allah’s (SWT) Names: The Withholder and The Expander. Allah (SWT) does not only withhold and expand life and sustenance, but He also holds and extends time. The Prophet (PBUH) asked his companions what they will do on the Day of Judgment when they stand for fifty thousand years without eating or drinking. The companions covered their faces and cried. But the Prophet (PBUH) told them that they will seem like the time of two rakaa’s for the believer. Thus, Allah (SWT) dominates time and manages it differently for different people. That is why we sometimes feel that a single hour takes a lifetime, while some events pass by in seconds. How glorious is Allah (SWT) the One who dominates time!

 

 

 

I mentioned the ‘certainty of eyesight’ and the ‘definite knowledge’ and let me add to them the ‘absolute Truth with certainty’ as mentioned in Surat Al Waqi’ah in what can be translated as, “Verily, this! This is an absolute Truth with certainty.”(TMQ, 65:95) Let me explain the three of them in one simple simile. When I tell you that there is a tree in Paradise that has fruit on it, you apply ‘definite knowledge’ when you believe in it without actually seeing it. You apply ‘certainty of eyesight’ when you actually see it. But ‘absolute Truth with certainty’ is applied, when you actually eat the fruit in Paradise Insha’ Allah.

 

 

 

Let us go back to the verses and to Allah’s (SWT) Beautiful names The Withholder and The Expander, which reminds me of a question I once read. A scholar was asked how two people will endure the same kind of hardship and difficulty in the tomb, if one died one thousand years before the Day of Judgment and the other died only one day before it. The scholar replied that value of time for humans differs from its value to Allah (SWT) and He manages it as he wishes by making it longer for some and shorter for others. Furthermore, a Prophet’s Hadith stresses this point. Abu Huraira narrated that the Prophet (PBUH) said, “Between the two blowings of the trumpet there will be forty.” The people said, “O Abu Huraira! Forty days?” I refused to reply. They said, “Forty years?” I refused to reply.” You see, it does not make a difference whether they are 40 years or 40 days since time is relative to us and completely controlled by Allah (SWT).

 

 

 

Consequently, Uzair (AS) was amazed looking at his fresh food and at the same time his donkey that died 100 years ago. However, Allah (SWT) wanted to show him another miracle, “And thus We have made of you a sign for the people.” (TMQ, 2:259). The town was brought to life!

 

 

 

Uzair (AS) wanted to watch one miracle, yet he was granted three miracles. The first was how Allah (SWT) controlled time. The second was how the whole town was brought to life. The third was shown in what can be translated as, “Look at the bones, how We bring them together and clothe them with flesh” (TMQ, 2:259). Uzair (AS) saw with his eyes how the bones of the donkey were brought together and how life was given to it. The word Nashaza in Arabic (used in the verse to describe the bones) comes from Nushuz (discordance) and Nashez is an example that means the disobedient wife. So such discordance (Nushuz) disappeared when the scattered bones were collected and given life to. Allah (SWT) is indeed most glorious. Hence, the bones composed a complete skeleton, then flesh started to cover it with blood vessels and all till resurrection was completed. Glorious is Allah (SWT)!

 

 

 

 

 

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[1] TMQ=Translation of the Meaning of the Qur'an. This translation is for the realized meaning, so far, of the stated (Surah:Ayah) of the Qur'an. Reading the translated meaning of the Qur'an can never replace reading it in Arabic, the language in which it was revealed.

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Uzair (AS) “Ezra” – Part 2:

 

 

 

"Or like the one who passed by a town while it had tumbled over its roofs. He said: "Oh! How will Allâh ever bring it to life after its death?" So Allâh caused him to die for a hundred years, then raised him up (again). He said: "How long did you remain (dead)?" He (the man) said: "(Perhaps) I remained (dead) a day or part of a day". He said: "Nay, you have remained (dead) for a hundred years, look at your food and your drink, they show no change; and look at your donkey! And thus We have made of you a sign for the people. Look at the bones, how We bring them together and clothe them with flesh". When this was clearly shown to him, he said, "I know (now) that Allâh is Able to do all things." (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:259)[1].

 

 

 

What does Allah (SWT) want to convey to us throughout this story? He wants us to increase our trust in Him and in His ability. He is the Eternal Owner of Sovereignty; why then should we be afraid or concerned about our sustenance, children or life?

 

We should notice a very important concept; the Qur’an’s aim is not just to narrate stories. The goal is much bigger than this; it is to awaken our hearts so that we may put our ultimate trust in Allah (SWT). We should surrender to His will and accept satisfactorily all what He does to us.

 

 

 

‘Uzair (AS) rode his donkey one day to a town; all the aforementioned miracles happened in one day. It was for this reason that these three Ayahs were mentioned successively in Surat Al-Baqara to emphasize that life and death are, only, in the hands of Allah (SWT). Allah (SWT) implants this meaning in our hearts.

 

 

 

In Surat Al-Baqara, Allah says what can be translated as, " Have you not looked at him who disputed with Ibrâhîm (Abraham) about his Lord (Allâh), because Allâh had given him the kingdom? When Ibrâhîm (Abraham) said (to him): "My Lord (Allâh) is He Who gives life and causes death." (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:258 ). In another Ayah, Ibrahim wants to inform his people about Allah (SWT), "Who has created me, and it is He Who guides me. And it is He Who feeds me and gives me to drink. And when I am ill, it is He who cures me. And Who will cause me to die, and then will bring me to life (again)." (TMQ Surat Al Shu'ra':78-81). He was certain that his soul was not his own property; rather, his life and death were in the hands of Allah (TWT)[2].

 

 

 

Accordingly, we have to please Allah (SWT) until we see the truth of certainty, which is Day of Judgment. Since our life and death are both in Allah's (SWT) hand, we must never fear from this life and we must never allow our lusts to dominate us. The Islamic theory, as a matter of fact, is based on knowing that life and death are in the hands of Allah (SWT) and consequently, we should surrender to His will.

 

 

 

In a separate incident with Ibrahim (AS), in Surat Al-Baqara, Allah (SWT)says what can be translated as, "My Lord! Show me how You give life to the dead. He (Allâh) said: "Do you not believe?" He [ibrâhîm (Abraham)] said: "Yes (I believe), but to be stronger in Faith." (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:260). In the same Ayah, Allah (SWT) then gives Ibrahim (AS) a similar example of ‘Uzair's (AS) donkey, but in a different manner. He said, what can be translated as, "Take four birds, then cause them to incline towards you (then slaughter them, cut them into pieces), and then put a portion of them on every hill, and call them, they will come to you in haste. And know that Allâh is All-Mighty, All-Wise." (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:260)., which means that Allah (SWT) asked him to first take four birds and "cause them to incline towards you", or, to label them by putting a sign on each so as to easily recognize them later on. Secondly, he was told to slaughter them and was then asked to mix the parts (the blood, flesh, bones and feathers). Finally, he was told to put parts of the birds after being mixed on each mountain while the heads of the birds remained with him. He was then told to call them.

 

 

 

Ibrahim (AS) saw in the sky, in front of his own eyes, feathers, flesh and bones flying towards him. They gathered and formed the bodies of the birds just as they were before. Then, every bird came to Ibrahim (AS), gathered its head, and began flying away. How Glorious is Allah!

 

 

 

In fact, if we look at the issue of giving life and causing death in the life of the prophets in general we will see many wonders. For example, Adam (AS), as mentioned in a Good and authentic Hadith narrated by Abi Musa Al-Asha’ri[3], was created from a handful of earth's dust. The dust was then mixed with water to become mud. When dried, the mud became a sticky substance. Allah (SWT) then formed it as a statue, just as we do with clay. The “statue” form was left for a certain period of time until its color changed to become clay of sharpened mud (like in pottery). Allah (SWT) then made a cavity in the mud form, which became the mouth; it made a sound like pottery when it was knocked. This was the beginning of Adam (AS) and it was mentioned that the angels and Satan - Iblis used to move inside the statue. Iblis used to look at him and say, "You have been created for a great matter ( purpose) ". When Allah (SWT) blew into this statue from His Own Soul it became a human being. May He be Glorified who made out of pottery a human who can move and walk.

 

 

 

Let's move to how Hawaa' ("Eve") was created. She was created from Adam's (AS) rib (the left rib above the heart), which is a crooked structure that serves as a protection of the heart. This crookedness is symbolic to a woman's passion, without which families may never be stable. Orientalists use this Hadith to claim that Islam devaluate women. Our Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), however, during the last moments of his life, recommended the fair treatment of women. He (PBUH) said, "Treat women nicely, for a woman is created from a rib, and the most curved portion of the rib is its upper portion, so, if you should try to straighten it, it will break, but if you leave it as it is, it will remain crooked. So treat women nicely."[4]

 

 

 

Allah (SWT) created Isa (AS) "Jesus" with a mother and no father with a blow inside Maryam (AS) ("Mary".)

 

 

 

Therefore, we notice Allah's (SWT) absolute ability in His creations and evident miracles. His creations came in four patterns:

 

a) A kind from neither a male nor a female - Adam (AS).

 

b) A kind from a male only – Hawaa' .

 

c) A kind from a female only - Isa (AS).

 

d) A kind from both a male and a female – all mankind.

 

 

 

Thus, we must never forget that our creation is also one of Allah's (SWT) miracles. We overlook this as we see generations after generations coming out of marriage and reproduction; this, in itself, is one of Allah's miracles in creation.

 

 

 

There is another issue concerning giving life that we have also overlooked. In another Good Hadith it was mentioned that “ When Allah (TWT) created Adam (AS), He wiped his back which means that He gives life and causes death according to His Own Will), so that, until The Day of Judgment, Adam's progeny will continue to reproduce and grow”.[5] The contents of this Hadith is emphasized in the Qur'an, where Allah says what can be translated as, "And (remember) when your Lord brought forth from the Children of Adam, from their loins, their seed (or from Adam’s loin his offspring) and made them testify as to themselves (saying): "Am I not your Lord?" They said: "Yes! We testify," lest you should say on the Day of Resurrection: "Verily, we have been unaware of this." (TMQ Surat Al-A'raf:172).

 

 

 

Allah (SWT) has made all of Adam’s offspring (until the Day of Judgment) alive for an extended period, far before the normal timing of their life, so that they may take their Shahada "declaration of faith". This was, in fact, our first meeting with Allah (SWT) when He created Adam (AS) and this Shahada is the instinct inside each one of us that attracts us towards Allah and causes us to express grief with ourselves whenever we disobey Him or become lazy in performing worship. Thus, we must observe how Allah (TWT) created this universe and to His ingenuity in arranging the issue of giving life and causing death!

 

 

 

Let's refer back to ‘Uzair (AS) and how Allah told him,"… And thus We have made you a sign for the people"(TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:259 ), Allah (SWT) ordered him to ride his donkey to a certain town for Da'wa "missionary activity". It came to happen that after he had arrived, he died. After 100 years, a miracle took place in the same town; Allah brought him back to life as a man of 40 years of age, just as he was the day he arrived to that town when he died. How then would he meet his sons and grandsons? Surely, they became older than him, even those who were his contemporaries! Some had died while others were still alive.

 

 

 

When ‘Uzair (AS) reached the center of the town, he saw its livelihood. He passed by people and asked them, "Have you ever heard of a man called ‘Uzair (AS)?” They answered," He was a good man who lived in a near town and died 100 years ago". He said," I am Uzair". They denied him and accused him of lying. Finally, they recalled that there was a woman who had been living during ‘Uzair's (AS) time and who knew him quite well. The woman was still alive, yet, she was blind. They realized that they could ask her to describe him, so they said" This woman knows ‘Uzair (AS). Let us bring her here so that she may describe you (‘Uzair) (AS) to us. If you are as she describes, then we will believe you".

 

 

 

The woman began to describe him and the people found ‘Uzair (AS) to have the same features as she related. Nevertheless, they said, "We need more proof". They said: " ‘Uzair (AS) had memorized Al -Tawrah (Torah) completely; if you are indeed ‘Uzair(AS), recite it, for it had been completely burnt by Bukhtu Nassar (Nebuchandnezzer) all but one copy, kept in heart by ‘Uzair(AS), remained. If you are he himself, recite Al -Tawrah for us."

 

 

 

‘Uzair (AS) began to recite it and started the Da’wa role for which he had come to that town 100 years ago. The people began to be guided and cry as they were deeply affected by the magnificence of what they heard. Hence, Allah (SWT) fulfilled what He commanded “Uzair (AS) to do, which was the Da'wa, and the people turned into believers with the help of ‘Uzair (AS).

 

 

 

How Glorious Allah (SWT) is, Who dominates the whole universe! The purpose of this story is to increase our trust in Allah (SWT). Allah (SWT) mentions this at the end of the Ayah, what can be translated as, " When this was clearly shown to him, he said, "I know (now) that Allâh is Able to do all things." (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:259). Everything is in the hands of Allah (SWT); if you are oppressed, and you've been committing sins for a long time, pray to Him sincerely to remove such sins from your heart. Be certain that this will be realized in a moment. This teaches us to seek Allah's (SWT) help in all our life aspects, as He is The Most Able.

 

 

 

It is worth mentioning that the word "Look" is repeated several times in this Ayah. Allah (SWT) wants us to look at everything around us to witness His ability and dominance. In addition, the word "Know" is also repeated. The goal behind this is great; namely, it is mentioned to ascertain the certainty in His knowledge and absolute ability

 

 

 

Accordingly, we can conclude the following four benefits from this story :

 

 

 

1. Allah (SWT) withholds and expands time the same way as He does with sustenance and souls.

 

 

 

2. The issue of life and death takes place everyday, since, in Islam, sleeping is just like death. The soul leaves the body every night, but in a different way than what happens in the case of death. We feel the moment of death, but Allah (SWT) takes the souls away everyday during sleep; we cannot feel this. " It is He Who takes your souls by night (when you are asleep), and has knowledge of all that you have done by day…" (TMQ Surat Al-An'am: 60).

 

 

 

Let’s look at the Prophet's (PBUH) Dua’a “supplication’ before going to sleep, " By the name of Allah, I lie down to sleep and by His name, I get up. If You withhold my soul, have mercy upon it and if You send it back, protect it with what You protect Your good slaves".[6] Therefore, the great miracle that happened to Uzair (AS) is actually happening everyday to all of us; we simply don’t pay attention to this matter.

 

 

 

We have to, accordingly, implant this belief in our hearts. We must never sleep after committing a sin before repenting and asking for Allah's forgiveness, as we might, Allah forbid, die on that.

 

 

 

Let's look also at the Prophet's Dua’a after waking up, "Thank Allah for bringing life to me after death and we all will go back to Him"[7]. Life can never go on without sleeping every night because the soul has to ascend every day to Allah (SWT). Look at this Ayah where Allah (SWT) says, what can be translated as, " It is Allâh Who takes away the souls at the time of their death, and those that die not during their sleep. He keeps those (souls) for which He has ordained death and sends the rest for a term appointed..." (TMQ Surat Az-Zumar: 42).

 

 

 

All this proves that Allah (SWT) bestows life everyday. We must be aware of His forbearing and patience, despite our sins, since death is repeated daily in our life during sleep. Our souls do not belong to us, but to Allah (SWT) alone.

 

 

 

3. The importance of Da'wa to Allah (SWT). Why don’t we all carry out the Da’wa to Allah (SWT); If we succeed to help someone to follow the right path, we will get rewarded for all that person's good deeds and also the good deeds of all those who will follow the right path through him.

 

 

 

4. We must know that Allah (SWT) is The Most Able, exactly as ‘Uzair (AS) said, "…Oh! How will Allâh ever bring it to life after its death?" (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:259) Nowadays, we are in a critical position due to the spread of corruption in the West in addition to profligacy, which they call "freedom". The population of the whole world now is six billion human beings out of which only one and quarter billion are monotheists. We must ask ourselves, "What is the difference between our world and the town which ‘Uzair (AS) was sent to?” The latter was destroyed and lifeless, while the former is morally, spiritually and religiously destroyed. How many people regularly pray the Fajr (Dawn), Qiyam (night prayer) or example? Hence, the story of ‘Uzair (AS) assures us to put our absolute trust in Allah (SWT) because He will definitely bring back the true religion to our world just as He brought back life to the town of ‘Uzair; it is simply a matter of time.

 

 

 

Allah (SWT) brings life to the Earth after its death, revives the hearts of people and even resurrects civilizations. Bringing life to the dead may take a day and a night, while it takes a longer time to revive a nation. Allah (SWT) showed ‘Uzair (AS) His ability to bring life back to his donkey within seconds, but when ‘Uzair (AS) asked to see how Allah can bring life back to the whole town, He let him die for 100 years. Why? It is not, of course, because He (SWT) is unable to do such a task; on the contrary, “Verily, His command when He intends a thing, is only that He says to it ”Be!” and it is” (TMQ Surat Ya-Seen:82). However, there are rules, which Allah (SWT) has set for this universe, one of which is, "… Verily! Allâh will not change the (good) condition of a people as long as they do not change their state (of goodness) themselves (by committing sins and by being ungrateful and disobedient to Allâh…)"(TMQ Surat Ar-Ra'd:11).

 

Advancement and prosperity come gradually. Allah (SWT) created the earth in six days. This is His law that has been set since the first moment of creation. To change a nation this should come step by step, through exertion of efforts to reform the people; it may take 100 years. Whereas giving life and causing death may come in a moment (as it happens everyday during sleeping). Therefore, when ‘Uzair (AS) asked to see the process of bringing back of life to the town, it did not happen as he expected; the matter needed a universal Law, unlike the issue of giving life and causing death, which happened in few seconds.

 

 

 

One hundred years is, thus, the sufficient time span for changing a civilization. Here, we can note a correlation between this and the numbers that have been mentioned in the Qur'an: In Musa's (AS)"Moses" story with his people, when they refused to enter the sacred land, Allah (SWT) punished them by causing them to wander through the land for 40 years. A question may be raised here: "Why is it 40 years in Musa's story and 100 years in ‘Uzair's ? Simply, to change a generation it takes 40 years, but to establish a civilization may take 100 years. Another proof may be found within the falling of Islam. It took 100 years for Islam to fall, from the eighteenth century until the nineteenth century; the curve declined gradually until Islam completely fell down. The European civilization, in the same time, took 100 years to be established; as its curve was rising, while that of Islam was declining.

 

 

 

These are Allah's (SWT) laws in His universe. Muslims has slackened that is why their curve went down gradually. Revival of the nation, which is the main target of ‘Uzair’s (AS) story , shall take 100 years, while raising a new generation shall take 40 years. We have to be optimistic that the sun of Islam is about to rise once again since the European curve is beginning to decline, while there is indeed a feeling of religious, serious and moral awakening spreading among Muslims, which shall redirect that curve to go up again.

 

 

 

However, reviving Islam will not come overnight and what is important is not for us to see it, but for our children, our future generations, to see the Islamic sunrise once again. This will take efforts in all what can be for the benefit of this nation and until the moment of meeting Allah (SWT) comes, so that we can tell Him that we have worked and did our best for Islam’s triumph. The examples throughout history are many: The first martyr in Islam was Sumaya, who had died even before Islam was gained its victory. Hamza also died in the battle of Uhud at the peek of the Muslims' defeat.

 

 

 

Allah (SWT) is not going to ask them why Islam wasn’t triumphant during their lifetime. Instead the question is going to be, " Did you do any thing to help Islam to be victorious?” Will it be enough to tell Him (SWT), when we will be asked the same question, that we were praying and worshiping Him regularly?

 

 

 

There is a beautiful Ayah in the Qur’an in which Allah combines between both the reviving of hearts and the bringing back of life to land. Allah (SWT) says, what can be translated as, "Has not the time come for the hearts of those who believe (in the Oneness of Allâh - Islâmic Monotheism) to be affected by Allâh’s Reminder (this Qur’ân), and that which has been revealed of the truth, lest they become as those who received the Scripture [the Taurât (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel)] before (i.e. Jews and Christians), and the term was prolonged for them and so their hearts were hardened? And many of them were Fâsiqûn (the rebellious, the disobedient to Allâh)", (TMQ SuratAl-Hadid:16). Allah then says just in the following Ayah, "Know that Allâh gives life to the earth after its death!"(TMQ Surat Al-Hadid:17).

 

 

 

This shows that there is a common relation between the two Ayahs: The One Who brings life to the land is the same Who revives hearts, souls and nations. Thus, we came to know the meaning of the two names of Allah (SWT), The Giver of Life and The Giver of Death.

 

 

 

At the end of this story, when ‘Uzair (AS) died, the Jews, due to their disbelief, said that he was the son of Allah (SWT). Allah (SWT) said, what can be translated as, "And the Jews say: ‘Uzair (Ezra) is the son of Allâh, and the Christians say: Messiah is the son of Allâh. That is their saying with their mouths, resembling the saying of those who disbelieved aforetime. Allâh’s Curse be on them, how they are deluded away from the truth!"(TMQ Surat At-Taubah:30). They are deluded away from the truth because they do not differentiate between truth and falsehood.

 

 

 

Sheikh Al-Sha'rawy, Allah’s (SWT) mercy be upon him, has some very beautiful comments on the Jews’ claim that ‘Uzair (AS) is the son of Allah(SWT). He says: " What angers Allah (SWT) the most is their claim because it mistakenly, concerns His Majesty and Glory.

 

A man desires a son, usually, for one of four reasons:

 

1) To immortalize his memory after his death, while Allah (TWT) is The Ever-Living and He never dies.

 

2) To support and help him when he gets old, while Allah (SWT) is The Most Strong and He never gets weak.

 

3) To bequeath his son his kingdom, while Allah (SWT) is The Ultimate Inheritor Who inherits the whole earth and all those who are living on it.

 

4) To boast about his son, while Allah (SWT) is The Mighty and we are the weak humans who need Him and resort to Him.

 

 

 

Allah (SWT) doesn't need any of the reasons mentioned above. Thus, when they say He has a son, it is like accusing His Majesty and Glory (AW)[8] and this angers Allah (SWT) the most. He said in the Qur'an, what can be translated as, "And they say: "The Most Gracious (Allâh) has begotten a son (or offspring or children) [as the Jews say: ‘Uzair (Ezra) is the son of Allâh, and the Christians say that He has begotten a son [‘Îsâ (Jesus)], and the pagan Arabs say that He has begotten daughters (angels and others.)]. Indeed you have brought forth (said) a terrible evil thing. Whereby the heavens are almost torn, and the earth is split asunder, and the mountains fall in ruins, That they ascribe a son (or offspring or children) to the Most Gracious (Allâh). But it is not suitable for (the Majesty of) the Most Gracious (Allâh) that He should beget a son (or offspring or children). There is none in the heavens and the earth but comes unto the Most Gracious (Allâh) as a slave. Verily He knows each one of them, and has counted them a full counting. And everyone of them will come to Him alone on the Day of Resurrection (without any helper, or protector or defender)." (TMQ Maryam:88-95).

 

 

 

Finally, my advice to you at the end of this story is that everyone of us should be keen not to sleep after committing a sin without repenting. and if you angered someone, you should apologize and ask for his/her forgiveness. And last but not least, never forget Al- Da'wa to Allah (SWT).

 

 

 

 

 

AmrKhaled(contact admin if its a beneficial link) © ÌãíÚ ÍÞæÞ ÇáäÔÑ ãÍÝæÙÉ

This Article may be published and duplicated freely for private purposes, as long as the original source is mentioned. For all other purposes you need to obtain the prior written approval of the website administration. For info: dar_altarjama[at]amrkhaled(contact admin if its a beneficial link)

 

 

 

 

 

[1] TMQ = Translation of the Meaning of the Qur'an. This translation is for the realized meaning, so far, of the stated (Surah :Ayah) of the Qur'an. Reading the translated meaning of the Qur'an can never replace reading it in Arabic, the language in which it was revealed.

 

[2] TWT= Tabaraka Wa Ta`ala [Most Blessed most High].

 

[3] Narrated Abi Musa Al-Asha’ri, Sahih At-Tirmidhi, Hadith No .4031.

 

[4] Narrated Abu Huraira, Sahih Bukhari,Volume 4, Book 55, Number 548.

 

[5] Narrated Omar Ibnul-Khattab, Sahih At-Tirmidhi, Hadith No .5071.

 

[6] Narrated Abu Huraira, Sahih Bukhari,Volume 8, Book 75, Number 332

 

[7] Narrated Hudhaifa, Sahih Bukhari,Volume 8, Book 75, Number 324.

 

[8] AW: Aza-Wa-Gal, [Glorified and Sublime be He].

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Uzair (AS) “Ezra” – Part 2:

 

 

 

"Or like the one who passed by a town while it had tumbled over its roofs. He said: "Oh! How will Allâh ever bring it to life after its death?" So Allâh caused him to die for a hundred years, then raised him up (again). He said: "How long did you remain (dead)?" He (the man) said: "(Perhaps) I remained (dead) a day or part of a day". He said: "Nay, you have remained (dead) for a hundred years, look at your food and your drink, they show no change; and look at your donkey! And thus We have made of you a sign for the people. Look at the bones, how We bring them together and clothe them with flesh". When this was clearly shown to him, he said, "I know (now) that Allâh is Able to do all things." (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:259)[1].

 

 

 

What does Allah (SWT) want to convey to us throughout this story? He wants us to increase our trust in Him and in His ability. He is the Eternal Owner of Sovereignty; why then should we be afraid or concerned about our sustenance, children or life?

 

We should notice a very important concept; the Qur’an’s aim is not just to narrate stories. The goal is much bigger than this; it is to awaken our hearts so that we may put our ultimate trust in Allah (SWT). We should surrender to His will and accept satisfactorily all what He does to us.

 

 

 

‘Uzair (AS) rode his donkey one day to a town; all the aforementioned miracles happened in one day. It was for this reason that these three Ayahs were mentioned successively in Surat Al-Baqara to emphasize that life and death are, only, in the hands of Allah (SWT). Allah (SWT) implants this meaning in our hearts.

 

 

 

In Surat Al-Baqara, Allah says what can be translated as, " Have you not looked at him who disputed with Ibrâhîm (Abraham) about his Lord (Allâh), because Allâh had given him the kingdom? When Ibrâhîm (Abraham) said (to him): "My Lord (Allâh) is He Who gives life and causes death." (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:258 ). In another Ayah, Ibrahim wants to inform his people about Allah (SWT), "Who has created me, and it is He Who guides me. And it is He Who feeds me and gives me to drink. And when I am ill, it is He who cures me. And Who will cause me to die, and then will bring me to life (again)." (TMQ Surat Al Shu'ra':78-81). He was certain that his soul was not his own property; rather, his life and death were in the hands of Allah (TWT)[2].

 

 

 

Accordingly, we have to please Allah (SWT) until we see the truth of certainty, which is Day of Judgment. Since our life and death are both in Allah's (SWT) hand, we must never fear from this life and we must never allow our lusts to dominate us. The Islamic theory, as a matter of fact, is based on knowing that life and death are in the hands of Allah (SWT) and consequently, we should surrender to His will.

 

 

 

In a separate incident with Ibrahim (AS), in Surat Al-Baqara, Allah (SWT)says what can be translated as, "My Lord! Show me how You give life to the dead. He (Allâh) said: "Do you not believe?" He [ibrâhîm (Abraham)] said: "Yes (I believe), but to be stronger in Faith." (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:260). In the same Ayah, Allah (SWT) then gives Ibrahim (AS) a similar example of ‘Uzair's (AS) donkey, but in a different manner. He said, what can be translated as, "Take four birds, then cause them to incline towards you (then slaughter them, cut them into pieces), and then put a portion of them on every hill, and call them, they will come to you in haste. And know that Allâh is All-Mighty, All-Wise." (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:260)., which means that Allah (SWT) asked him to first take four birds and "cause them to incline towards you", or, to label them by putting a sign on each so as to easily recognize them later on. Secondly, he was told to slaughter them and was then asked to mix the parts (the blood, flesh, bones and feathers). Finally, he was told to put parts of the birds after being mixed on each mountain while the heads of the birds remained with him. He was then told to call them.

 

 

 

Ibrahim (AS) saw in the sky, in front of his own eyes, feathers, flesh and bones flying towards him. They gathered and formed the bodies of the birds just as they were before. Then, every bird came to Ibrahim (AS), gathered its head, and began flying away. How Glorious is Allah!

 

 

 

In fact, if we look at the issue of giving life and causing death in the life of the prophets in general we will see many wonders. For example, Adam (AS), as mentioned in a Good and authentic Hadith narrated by Abi Musa Al-Asha’ri[3], was created from a handful of earth's dust. The dust was then mixed with water to become mud. When dried, the mud became a sticky substance. Allah (SWT) then formed it as a statue, just as we do with clay. The “statue” form was left for a certain period of time until its color changed to become clay of sharpened mud (like in pottery). Allah (SWT) then made a cavity in the mud form, which became the mouth; it made a sound like pottery when it was knocked. This was the beginning of Adam (AS) and it was mentioned that the angels and Satan - Iblis used to move inside the statue. Iblis used to look at him and say, "You have been created for a great matter ( purpose) ". When Allah (SWT) blew into this statue from His Own Soul it became a human being. May He be Glorified who made out of pottery a human who can move and walk.

 

 

 

Let's move to how Hawaa' ("Eve") was created. She was created from Adam's (AS) rib (the left rib above the heart), which is a crooked structure that serves as a protection of the heart. This crookedness is symbolic to a woman's passion, without which families may never be stable. Orientalists use this Hadith to claim that Islam devaluate women. Our Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), however, during the last moments of his life, recommended the fair treatment of women. He (PBUH) said, "Treat women nicely, for a woman is created from a rib, and the most curved portion of the rib is its upper portion, so, if you should try to straighten it, it will break, but if you leave it as it is, it will remain crooked. So treat women nicely."[4]

 

 

 

Allah (SWT) created Isa (AS) "Jesus" with a mother and no father with a blow inside Maryam (AS) ("Mary".)

 

 

 

Therefore, we notice Allah's (SWT) absolute ability in His creations and evident miracles. His creations came in four patterns:

 

a) A kind from neither a male nor a female - Adam (AS).

 

b) A kind from a male only – Hawaa' .

 

c) A kind from a female only - Isa (AS).

 

d) A kind from both a male and a female – all mankind.

 

 

 

Thus, we must never forget that our creation is also one of Allah's (SWT) miracles. We overlook this as we see generations after generations coming out of marriage and reproduction; this, in itself, is one of Allah's miracles in creation.

 

 

 

There is another issue concerning giving life that we have also overlooked. In another Good Hadith it was mentioned that “ When Allah (TWT) created Adam (AS), He wiped his back which means that He gives life and causes death according to His Own Will), so that, until The Day of Judgment, Adam's progeny will continue to reproduce and grow”.[5] The contents of this Hadith is emphasized in the Qur'an, where Allah says what can be translated as, "And (remember) when your Lord brought forth from the Children of Adam, from their loins, their seed (or from Adam’s loin his offspring) and made them testify as to themselves (saying): "Am I not your Lord?" They said: "Yes! We testify," lest you should say on the Day of Resurrection: "Verily, we have been unaware of this." (TMQ Surat Al-A'raf:172).

 

 

 

Allah (SWT) has made all of Adam’s offspring (until the Day of Judgment) alive for an extended period, far before the normal timing of their life, so that they may take their Shahada "declaration of faith". This was, in fact, our first meeting with Allah (SWT) when He created Adam (AS) and this Shahada is the instinct inside each one of us that attracts us towards Allah and causes us to express grief with ourselves whenever we disobey Him or become lazy in performing worship. Thus, we must observe how Allah (TWT) created this universe and to His ingenuity in arranging the issue of giving life and causing death!

 

 

 

Let's refer back to ‘Uzair (AS) and how Allah told him,"… And thus We have made you a sign for the people"(TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:259 ), Allah (SWT) ordered him to ride his donkey to a certain town for Da'wa "missionary activity". It came to happen that after he had arrived, he died. After 100 years, a miracle took place in the same town; Allah brought him back to life as a man of 40 years of age, just as he was the day he arrived to that town when he died. How then would he meet his sons and grandsons? Surely, they became older than him, even those who were his contemporaries! Some had died while others were still alive.

 

 

 

When ‘Uzair (AS) reached the center of the town, he saw its livelihood. He passed by people and asked them, "Have you ever heard of a man called ‘Uzair (AS)?” They answered," He was a good man who lived in a near town and died 100 years ago". He said," I am Uzair". They denied him and accused him of lying. Finally, they recalled that there was a woman who had been living during ‘Uzair's (AS) time and who knew him quite well. The woman was still alive, yet, she was blind. They realized that they could ask her to describe him, so they said" This woman knows ‘Uzair (AS). Let us bring her here so that she may describe you (‘Uzair) (AS) to us. If you are as she describes, then we will believe you".

 

 

 

The woman began to describe him and the people found ‘Uzair (AS) to have the same features as she related. Nevertheless, they said, "We need more proof". They said: " ‘Uzair (AS) had memorized Al -Tawrah (Torah) completely; if you are indeed ‘Uzair(AS), recite it, for it had been completely burnt by Bukhtu Nassar (Nebuchandnezzer) all but one copy, kept in heart by ‘Uzair(AS), remained. If you are he himself, recite Al -Tawrah for us."

 

 

 

‘Uzair (AS) began to recite it and started the Da’wa role for which he had come to that town 100 years ago. The people began to be guided and cry as they were deeply affected by the magnificence of what they heard. Hence, Allah (SWT) fulfilled what He commanded “Uzair (AS) to do, which was the Da'wa, and the people turned into believers with the help of ‘Uzair (AS).

 

 

 

How Glorious Allah (SWT) is, Who dominates the whole universe! The purpose of this story is to increase our trust in Allah (SWT). Allah (SWT) mentions this at the end of the Ayah, what can be translated as, " When this was clearly shown to him, he said, "I know (now) that Allâh is Able to do all things." (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:259). Everything is in the hands of Allah (SWT); if you are oppressed, and you've been committing sins for a long time, pray to Him sincerely to remove such sins from your heart. Be certain that this will be realized in a moment. This teaches us to seek Allah's (SWT) help in all our life aspects, as He is The Most Able.

 

 

 

It is worth mentioning that the word "Look" is repeated several times in this Ayah. Allah (SWT) wants us to look at everything around us to witness His ability and dominance. In addition, the word "Know" is also repeated. The goal behind this is great; namely, it is mentioned to ascertain the certainty in His knowledge and absolute ability

 

 

 

Accordingly, we can conclude the following four benefits from this story :

 

 

 

1. Allah (SWT) withholds and expands time the same way as He does with sustenance and souls.

 

 

 

2. The issue of life and death takes place everyday, since, in Islam, sleeping is just like death. The soul leaves the body every night, but in a different way than what happens in the case of death. We feel the moment of death, but Allah (SWT) takes the souls away everyday during sleep; we cannot feel this. " It is He Who takes your souls by night (when you are asleep), and has knowledge of all that you have done by day…" (TMQ Surat Al-An'am: 60).

 

 

 

Let’s look at the Prophet's (PBUH) Dua’a “supplication’ before going to sleep, " By the name of Allah, I lie down to sleep and by His name, I get up. If You withhold my soul, have mercy upon it and if You send it back, protect it with what You protect Your good slaves".[6] Therefore, the great miracle that happened to Uzair (AS) is actually happening everyday to all of us; we simply don’t pay attention to this matter.

 

 

 

We have to, accordingly, implant this belief in our hearts. We must never sleep after committing a sin before repenting and asking for Allah's forgiveness, as we might, Allah forbid, die on that.

 

 

 

Let's look also at the Prophet's Dua’a after waking up, "Thank Allah for bringing life to me after death and we all will go back to Him"[7]. Life can never go on without sleeping every night because the soul has to ascend every day to Allah (SWT). Look at this Ayah where Allah (SWT) says, what can be translated as, " It is Allâh Who takes away the souls at the time of their death, and those that die not during their sleep. He keeps those (souls) for which He has ordained death and sends the rest for a term appointed..." (TMQ Surat Az-Zumar: 42).

 

 

 

All this proves that Allah (SWT) bestows life everyday. We must be aware of His forbearing and patience, despite our sins, since death is repeated daily in our life during sleep. Our souls do not belong to us, but to Allah (SWT) alone.

 

 

 

3. The importance of Da'wa to Allah (SWT). Why don’t we all carry out the Da’wa to Allah (SWT); If we succeed to help someone to follow the right path, we will get rewarded for all that person's good deeds and also the good deeds of all those who will follow the right path through him.

 

 

 

4. We must know that Allah (SWT) is The Most Able, exactly as ‘Uzair (AS) said, "…Oh! How will Allâh ever bring it to life after its death?" (TMQ Surat Al-Baqara:259) Nowadays, we are in a critical position due to the spread of corruption in the West in addition to profligacy, which they call "freedom". The population of the whole world now is six billion human beings out of which only one and quarter billion are monotheists. We must ask ourselves, "What is the difference between our world and the town which ‘Uzair (AS) was sent to?” The latter was destroyed and lifeless, while the former is morally, spiritually and religiously destroyed. How many people regularly pray the Fajr (Dawn), Qiyam (night prayer) or example? Hence, the story of ‘Uzair (AS) assures us to put our absolute trust in Allah (SWT) because He will definitely bring back the true religion to our world just as He brought back life to the town of ‘Uzair; it is simply a matter of time.

 

 

 

Allah (SWT) brings life to the Earth after its death, revives the hearts of people and even resurrects civilizations. Bringing life to the dead may take a day and a night, while it takes a longer time to revive a nation. Allah (SWT) showed ‘Uzair (AS) His ability to bring life back to his donkey within seconds, but when ‘Uzair (AS) asked to see how Allah can bring life back to the whole town, He let him die for 100 years. Why? It is not, of course, because He (SWT) is unable to do such a task; on the contrary, “Verily, His command when He intends a thing, is only that He says to it ”Be!” and it is” (TMQ Surat Ya-Seen:82). However, there are rules, which Allah (SWT) has set for this universe, one of which is, "… Verily! Allâh will not change the (good) condition of a people as long as they do not change their state (of goodness) themselves (by committing sins and by being ungrateful and disobedient to Allâh…)"(TMQ Surat Ar-Ra'd:11).

 

Advancement and prosperity come gradually. Allah (SWT) created the earth in six days. This is His law that has been set since the first moment of creation. To change a nation this should come step by step, through exertion of efforts to reform the people; it may take 100 years. Whereas giving life and causing death may come in a moment (as it happens everyday during sleeping). Therefore, when ‘Uzair (AS) asked to see the process of bringing back of life to the town, it did not happen as he expected; the matter needed a universal Law, unlike the issue of giving life and causing death, which happened in few seconds.

 

 

 

One hundred years is, thus, the sufficient time span for changing a civilization. Here, we can note a correlation between this and the numbers that have been mentioned in the Qur'an: In Musa's (AS)"Moses" story with his people, when they refused to enter the sacred land, Allah (SWT) punished them by causing them to wander through the land for 40 years. A question may be raised here: "Why is it 40 years in Musa's story and 100 years in ‘Uzair's ? Simply, to change a generation it takes 40 years, but to establish a civilization may take 100 years. Another proof may be found within the falling of Islam. It took 100 years for Islam to fall, from the eighteenth century until the nineteenth century; the curve declined gradually until Islam completely fell down. The European civilization, in the same time, took 100 years to be established; as its curve was rising, while that of Islam was declining.

 

 

 

These are Allah's (SWT) laws in His universe. Muslims has slackened that is why their curve went down gradually. Revival of the nation, which is the main target of ‘Uzair’s (AS) story , shall take 100 years, while raising a new generation shall take 40 years. We have to be optimistic that the sun of Islam is about to rise once again since the European curve is beginning to decline, while there is indeed a feeling of religious, serious and moral awakening spreading among Muslims, which shall redirect that curve to go up again.

 

 

 

However, reviving Islam will not come overnight and what is important is not for us to see it, but for our children, our future generations, to see the Islamic sunrise once again. This will take efforts in all what can be for the benefit of this nation and until the moment of meeting Allah (SWT) comes, so that we can tell Him that we have worked and did our best for Islam’s triumph. The examples throughout history are many: The first martyr in Islam was Sumaya, who had died even before Islam was gained its victory. Hamza also died in the battle of Uhud at the peek of the Muslims' defeat.

 

 

 

Allah (SWT) is not going to ask them why Islam wasn’t triumphant during their lifetime. Instead the question is going to be, " Did you do any thing to help Islam to be victorious?” Will it be enough to tell Him (SWT), when we will be asked the same question, that we were praying and worshiping Him regularly?

 

 

 

There is a beautiful Ayah in the Qur’an in which Allah combines between both the reviving of hearts and the bringing back of life to land. Allah (SWT) says, what can be translated as, "Has not the time come for the hearts of those who believe (in the Oneness of Allâh - Islâmic Monotheism) to be affected by Allâh’s Reminder (this Qur’ân), and that which has been revealed of the truth, lest they become as those who received the Scripture [the Taurât (Torah) and the Injeel (Gospel)] before (i.e. Jews and Christians), and the term was prolonged for them and so their hearts were hardened? And many of them were Fâsiqûn (the rebellious, the disobedient to Allâh)", (TMQ SuratAl-Hadid:16). Allah then says just in the following Ayah, "Know that Allâh gives life to the earth after its death!"(TMQ Surat Al-Hadid:17).

 

 

 

This shows that there is a common relation between the two Ayahs: The One Who brings life to the land is the same Who revives hearts, souls and nations. Thus, we came to know the meaning of the two names of Allah (SWT), The Giver of Life and The Giver of Death.

 

 

 

At the end of this story, when ‘Uzair (AS) died, the Jews, due to their disbelief, said that he was the son of Allah (SWT). Allah (SWT) said, what can be translated as, "And the Jews say: ‘Uzair (Ezra) is the son of Allâh, and the Christians say: Messiah is the son of Allâh. That is their saying with their mouths, resembling the saying of those who disbelieved aforetime. Allâh’s Curse be on them, how they are deluded away from the truth!"(TMQ Surat At-Taubah:30). They are deluded away from the truth because they do not differentiate between truth and falsehood.

 

 

 

Sheikh Al-Sha'rawy, Allah’s (SWT) mercy be upon him, has some very beautiful comments on the Jews’ claim that ‘Uzair (AS) is the son of Allah(SWT). He says: " What angers Allah (SWT) the most is their claim because it mistakenly, concerns His Majesty and Glory.

 

A man desires a son, usually, for one of four reasons:

 

1) To immortalize his memory after his death, while Allah (TWT) is The Ever-Living and He never dies.

 

2) To support and help him when he gets old, while Allah (SWT) is The Most Strong and He never gets weak.

 

3) To bequeath his son his kingdom, while Allah (SWT) is The Ultimate Inheritor Who inherits the whole earth and all those who are living on it.

 

4) To boast about his son, while Allah (SWT) is The Mighty and we are the weak humans who need Him and resort to Him.

 

 

 

Allah (SWT) doesn't need any of the reasons mentioned above. Thus, when they say He has a son, it is like accusing His Majesty and Glory (AW)[8] and this angers Allah (SWT) the most. He said in the Qur'an, what can be translated as, "And they say: "The Most Gracious (Allâh) has begotten a son (or offspring or children) [as the Jews say: ‘Uzair (Ezra) is the son of Allâh, and the Christians say that He has begotten a son [‘Îsâ (Jesus)], and the pagan Arabs say that He has begotten daughters (angels and others.)]. Indeed you have brought forth (said) a terrible evil thing. Whereby the heavens are almost torn, and the earth is split asunder, and the mountains fall in ruins, That they ascribe a son (or offspring or children) to the Most Gracious (Allâh). But it is not suitable for (the Majesty of) the Most Gracious (Allâh) that He should beget a son (or offspring or children). There is none in the heavens and the earth but comes unto the Most Gracious (Allâh) as a slave. Verily He knows each one of them, and has counted them a full counting. And everyone of them will come to Him alone on the Day of Resurrection (without any helper, or protector or defender)." (TMQ Maryam:88-95).

 

 

 

Finally, my advice to you at the end of this story is that everyone of us should be keen not to sleep after committing a sin without repenting. and if you angered someone, you should apologize and ask for his/her forgiveness. And last but not least, never forget Al- Da'wa to Allah (SWT).

 

 

 

 

 

AmrKhaled(contact admin if its a beneficial link) © ÌãíÚ ÍÞæÞ ÇáäÔÑ ãÍÝæÙÉ

This Article may be published and duplicated freely for private purposes, as long as the original source is mentioned. For all other purposes you need to obtain the prior written approval of the website administration. For info: dar_altarjama[at]amrkhaled(contact admin if its a beneficial link)

 

 

 

 

 

[1] TMQ = Translation of the Meaning of the Qur'an. This translation is for the realized meaning, so far, of the stated (Surah :Ayah) of the Qur'an. Reading the translated meaning of the Qur'an can never replace reading it in Arabic

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masallah that was long i got dizzy in the end puhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh

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