Prophet Muhammad ﷺ: Early Life and the Coming Down of the Revelation to Him – Shaykh Fawzan | Dawud Burbank [Audio|En]


Sharh-ul-Usool ath-Thalaathah : Lesson 41
Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzan | Dawud Burbank [Audio|English]

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Imaam Muhammad ibn ‘Abdul-Wahhaab (rahimahullaah) said:

He lived for sixty-three years: forty before Prophet-hood and twenty-three as a Prophet and Messenger. He was sent as a Prophet through [the revelation of]Iqra  [58]

[58] Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzan’s Explanation :

He was born in Makkah sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam and breastfed amongst the tribe of Banoo Sa`d with Haleemah as-Sa`diyyah. His father, `Abdullaah, died whilst he was still in the womb and his mother died a short time after his birth. So he was taken care of by Umm Ayman al-Habashiyyah whom he inherited from his father. He came to be under the guardianship of his grandfather, `Abdul-Muttalib, then `Abdul-Muttalib died and his guardianship moved to his paternal uncle, Aboo Taalib.

He sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam lived for forty years before prophet-hood being well-known for trustworthiness, truthfulness, generosity, for avoiding the worship of idols and avoiding the drinking of khamar (alcohol). He had not used to do what the people of the day of ignorance did, rather he `alaihissalaatu wassalaam used to go out to the cave of Hiraa and worship in it for days at a time. He would worship Allaah upon the religious way of Ibraaheem upon tawheed. Then, when he reached the age of forty  `alaihissalaatu wasalaam, the revelation came down upon him such that Jibreel came to him whilst he was in the cave of Hiraa, and said to him: “Recite!” He said: “I cannot recite,” – meaning: I am not able to read. So he pressed him very tightly and then released him and said: “Recite!” He said: “I am not able to recite!” Then, he pressed him a second time and released him and said: “Recite!” He said: “I cannot recite!” So, he pressed for third time and  said:

اقْرَأْ بِاسْمِ رَبِّكَ الَّذِي خَلَقَ – خَلَقَ الْإِنسَانَ مِنْ عَلَقٍ

«Recite! In the Name of your Lord Who created, who created man from a clot of blood.» [96: 1-2]

This was his sallallaahu`alaihiwasallam prophet-hood. Allaah made him a prophet through [the aayah] “Iqra.”

Then, he went to his house shaking from fear, because he had encountered something which he had not known before, an extremely frightening matter. So, he found his wife Khadijah radiyallaahu`anha, and she covered him up and calmed him down. She said to him: “Know! By Allaah! Allaah will not humiliate you for indeed you maintain the ties of kinship, you show hospitality to the guest, you look after the orphans, and you help people who have been struck by calamities.” So, she prepared him and took him to her paternal uncle, Waraqah ibn Nawfal. He was a man who devoted himself to worship and who read the previous scriptures and who worshipped Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic. When he informed him of what he had seen, he said: “This was the spirit who used to descend to Moosaa,” meaning: Jibreel `alaihisalaam. 

The Coming Down of the Revelation to him (sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam)

Imaam Muhammad ibn ‘Abdul-Wahhaab (rahimahullaah) said:

He was sent as a Messenger with al-Muddathir. His land was Makkah and he made migration to al-Madeenah. Allaah sent him to warn against shirk and to call to tawheed. The proof is His saying:

يَا أَيُّهَا الْمُدَّثِّرُ – قُمْ فَأَنذِرْ – وَرَبَّكَ فَكَبِّرْ – وَثِيَابَكَ فَطَهِّرْ – وَالرُّجْزَ فَاهْجُرْ  – وَلَا تَمْنُن تَسْتَكْثِرُ – وَلِرَبِّكَ فَاصْبِرْ

«O you wrapped (in garments)! Arise and warn! And exalt your Lord! And purify your garments! And shun the idols! And do not give anything in order to receive more in return! And patiently persevere for the sake of your Lord!» [74:1-7] [59]

[59] Shaykh Saalih al-Fawzan’s Explanation :

There came down to him, His saying, He the Most High:

يَا أَيُّهَا الْمُدَّثِّرُ – قُمْ فَأَنذِرْ

«O you wrapped (in garments)! Arise and warn!» [74:1-2]

This was him being sent as a Messenger and this is the meaning of the saying of the Shaykh:

«He was sent as a Prophet through [the revelation of] Iqra. and he was sent as a Messenger with al-Muddathir

The difference between a prophet and a Messenger is that a prophet (nabiyy) is one to whom Allaah has revealed way, but he was not commanded to convey it, whereas a rasool (Messenger) is one to whom a revealed way was sent and he was commanded to convey it. The clarification of that is that the Messenger is one to whom a revealed law comes down and a book, so he (sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam) was sent as a prophet through Iqra. and he was sent as a messenger through al-Muddathir at the age of forty. This was the case with the prophets. A prophet is sent with a revealed law and book from before him and he is entrusted with certain duties like the prophets of Banoo Israa`eel who came after Moosaa.

«al-Muddathir» means the one who is wrapped up, because he sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam was struck by alarm, so he said: “Cover me up with garments! Cover me up with garments!” Meaning: Cover me up. Therefore, Allaah sent down to him:

يَا أَيُّهَا الْمُدَّثِّرُ – قُمْ فَأَنذِرْ – وَرَبَّكَ فَكَبِّرْ

«O you wrapped (in garments)! Arise and warn! And exalt your Lord!» [74:1-3]

 Meaning: Exalt and venerate Him.

وَثِيَابَكَ فَطَهِّرْ

«And purify your garments!» [74:4]

Meaning: Purify your deeds from shirk, because a person’s actions are garments. Allaah, the Most High, said:

وَلِبَاسُ التَّقْوَىٰ ذَٰلِكَ خَيْرٌ

«And the clothing of dutifulness to Allaah, that is better.» [7:26]

Dutifulness is called clothing.

وَالرُّجْزَ فَاهْجُرْ

«And keep away from Ar-Rujz (the idols)! »[74:5]

«ar-Rujz» ar-Rujz (filth) means the idols.

«Shun [the idols]» meaning: abandon and keep well away from them.

So, Allaah raised him as a Prophet at the age of forty and he remained in Makkah for thirteen years, calling the people to tawheed and to the abandonment of the worship of idols. There were many discussions which he had with the people of shirk. He suffered harm upon himself and upon those who believed in him and his followers. The people of shirk caused many difficulties throughout the thirteen years.

Three years before the migration, he was taken on the Night Journey to Jerusalem. He was taken up through the heavens and the five daily prayers were made obligatory upon him. So, he prayed in Makkah for three years. Then, the Quraysh plotted to kill and attack him, so Allaah permitted him to migrate to al-Madeenah. So, he migrated to al-Madeenah after he had met with the Ansaar in the first and second pledge of al-`Aqabah.

He migrated to al-Madeenah and remained there for ten years. So, altogether, it was twenty-three years [of prophet-hood]. After the prophet-hood, he sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam lived twenty-three years, thirteen years in Makkah laying the foundations of the call to tawheed, and for ten years in al-Madeenah. Then, Allaah took his soul at the age of sixty-three years. So, his life-span in Messenger-ship was twenty-three years.

This blessing which Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic, sent down upon him, this abundant knowledge, this jihaad, and this establishment which He granted him upon the earth was all in this short time of twenty-three years. This is one of the signs of Allaah, the Perfect and Most High, and from the blessings given to the prophet sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam, the blessings of his call and the blessings of the revelation which was sent down to him. And before all of this, it came about through the aid of Allaah, the Mighty and Majestic. He is the One who helped him. He is the One who defended him and aided him until he conveyed His call to the East and the West. All praise is for Allaah, the Lord of the whole of creation.

His saying: «Allaah sent him to warn against shirk and to call to tawheed» This is his call sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam, warning against shirk and calling to tawheed. And this is what is obligatory for the du`aat (callers) to precede upon in their call, that they should focus upon warning against shirk and calling to tawheed before everything, otherwise their call will not be upon the manhaj (methodology) of the Messenger sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam.

Allaah sent the Messenger sallallaahu`alaihi wa sallam with warning against shirk and calling to tawheed, so it is essential to lay this foundation down first of all. After that, the person can direct his attention to the rest of the matters, since matters will not be correct and sound except with the presence of tawheed. If all of the people were to abandon zinaa (fornication), intoxicants, stealing, and they took on every virtuous quality from deeds and behavior, but did not abandon shirk, there would be no benefit in these matters and it will not benefit them. Whereas, if the people were to remain free of shirk, but had major sins less than shirk, then there is hope for such a person that Allaah will either forgive him or punish him in accordance with the level of his sins. But his final destination will be to Paradise because he is a person of tawheed. 

So Tawheed is the fundamental basis and foundation. There is no salvation except with the presence of tawheed firstly. Therefore, it is obligatory to concentrate and always give attention to it and to call the people to it and to teach it to the people and to explain it to them, what is the meaning of tawheed and what is the meaning of shirk. The Muslim must be aware of this matter and attain certainty concerning it. He should check himself so that he does not fall into anything from shirk or infringe tawheed. This matter is essential and the da`wah must proceed upon this basis.

Imaam Muhammad ibn ‘Abdul-Wahhaab (rahimahullaah) said:

The meaning of «Arise and warn!» is to warn against shirk and call to tawheed. «And exalt your Lord!» meaning: venerate Him with tawheed. «And purify your garments!» meaning: purify your deeds from shirk. «And shun ar-rujz» ar-rujz means the idols and «shunning» meaning: abandoning them and disassociating from them and their people.

Sharh-ul-Usool-ith-Thalaathah. Explanation of the Three Fundamental Principles of Imaam Muhammad ibn ‘Abdil-Wahhaab by Shaykh Saalih ibn Fowzaan al-Fowzaan hafizahullaah. Translated by  Daawood  Burbank, rahimahullaah

Posted with kind permission from Dawud Burbank rahimahullaah

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