The Prophet Ibrahim (as)

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The Prophet Ibrahim (as) is cited by Allah in the Qur'an as an example on a number of varied subjects. The most important virtues of the Prophet Ibrahim (as) were the deep faith which he possessed, his great devotion to Allah, and his great courage in doing battle against the unbelievers. In a verse of the Qur'an, Allah refers to him as "a community unto himself" (Surat an-Nahl, 120). This accorded status should be regarded as an example by all Muslims. Every Muslim schould become "a community in himself", which is to say, that even if he is alone, he can possess faith, courage and determination, by which he may also inspire others.

In a number of verses, Allah relates the examples of the courage that was coupled with powerful insight in the Prophet Ibrahim (as). One account provided in the Qur'an describes the astounding courage shown by him in the face of the unbelievers who worshipped idols:

One of his followers in faith was Ibrahim when he came to his Lord with an unblemished heart, and said to his father and his people, "What are you worshipping? Is it falsehood-gods besides Allah-that you desire?" "So what are your thoughts about the Lord of all the worlds?" He took a look at the stars and said, "I am sick." So they turned their backs on him. He turned surreptitiously to their gods and said, "Do you not eat? What is the matter with you that you do not speak?" He turned on them, striking out with his right hand. (Surat as-Saffat, 83-93)



As we are told in these verses, the Prophet Ibrahim (as) opposed himself to the entire tribe, and through clever dialogue, made them recognize that their idols were not gods, but only manmade sculptures of wood. The unbelievers, who had not until then ever met anyone who denounced their idols, were angered by and wanted to punish him:

They came rushing back to him. He said, "Do you worship something you have carved when Allah created both you and what you do?" They said, "Build a pyre for him and fling him into the blaze!" They tried to outwit him but We made them the lowest. He said, "I am going towards my Lord; He will be my guide." (Surat as-Saffat, 94-99)



In spite of their rage, the Prophet Ibrahim (as) continued to speak of the existence and unity of Allah, carrying out his duty with courage. Knowing that all people, including the tribe who were so violently opposing him, are under the control of Allah, he behaved steadfastly, showing his boundless trust in our Lord. The leaders of the tribe wanted to throw him into a fire, but Allah saved him by a miracle. This is a proof of Allah's promise of help to all believers who battle fearlessly on His path.

In other verses of the Qur'an, the Prophet Ibrahim's (as) show of devotion to Allah, and the courage he demonstrated, are held up as examples of the behavior for believers to aspire to:

His people argued with him. He said, "Are you arguing with me about Allah when He has guided me? I have no fear of any partner you ascribe to Him unless my Lord should will such a thing to happen. My Lord encompasses all things in His knowledge so will you not pay heed? Why should I fear what you have associated with Him when you yourselves apparently have no fear of associating partners with Allah for which He has sent down no authority to you? Which of the two parties is more entitled to feel safe, if you have any knowledge?"Those who believe and do not mix up their faith with any wrongdoing, they are the ones who are safe; it is they who are guided.' (Surat al-An'am, 80-82)
2009-06-27 23:59:19

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