Maryam: An Exemplary Muslim Woman

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Conclusion

Mary was an exalted woman, one praised by Allah and given the responsibility of bringing the Prophet Jesus (pbuh) into this world: "Mary, Allah has chosen you and purified you. He has chosen you over all other women" (Surah Al 'Imran: 42). Allah made her a role model for all future generations.

Allah also revealed the Prophet Jesus' (pbuh) closeness to Him: "His name is the Messiah, Jesus son of Mary, of high esteem in this world and the Hereafter, and one of those brought near" (Surah Al 'Imran: 45). With the phrase "he was pleasing to his Lord" (Surah Maryam: 55), Allah reveals His pleasure with the Prophet Ishmael (pbuh). He praises the Prophet Enoch (pbuh) and reveals his high status in His Presence: "Mention Enoch in the Book. He was a true man and a Prophet. We raised him up to a high place" (Surah Maryam: 56-57). Allah mentions the Prophet Abraham (pbuh), the Prophet Isaac (pbuh), and the Prophet Jacob (pbuh) as men of strength, foresight, and superiority: "In Our eyes, they are among the best of chosen men" (Surah Sad: 47). Allah also states that the Prophet Ishmael (pbuh), the Prophet Elisha (pbuh) and the Prophet Dhu'l-Kifl (pbuh) were: "among the best of men" (Surah Sad: 48), and praises the Prophet Solomon (pbuh) for his devotion: "What an excellent servant! He truly turned to his Lord" (Surah Sad: 30). And as for the Prophet Abraham (pbuh), Allah says: "Allah took Abraham as an intimate friend" (Surat an-Nisa': 125).

Allah reveals that our Prophet Muhammad (may Allah bless him and grant him peace) is "truly vast in character", and will have "a wage that never fails" (Surat al-Qalam: 3-4).

No doubt, the fact that Allah praises His Prophets and other devout Muslims in this manner clearly reveals their dignified status. It is a great honor to be told such things as Allah is pleased with you, that you have been raised to a high status, that you have been chosen as Allah's close friend, to be one of the deserving, or that you are a good servant. Every believer desires to be rewarded with His closeness, friendship, and good pleasure. In order to realize this desire, however, they must not consider these gifts as being only for Prophets and must realize that our Lord's mercy and grace is very great. Allah has revealed that He will answer all of the prayers made by the sincere believers who turn to Him. For this reason, both men and women must do their best to attain the Prophets' high status.

"Those for whom the Best from Us was preordained will be far away from it" (Surat al-Anbiya': 101). This verse refers to those to whom our Lord gave goodness. Allah gives everyone, regardless of gender, the opportunity to become one of His chosen people. What we must do to achieve this goal is to bond with Allah through our love for Him and hold Him dearer than anything else by living according to what pleases Him. Anyone who lives this genuine faith, Allah willing, will find the best reward in His Presence.

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