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The Miracles of Prophets -2

17 May 2019
The Miracles of Prophets -2

 The miracle of She-Camel of Saleh علیہ السلام

وَاِلٰى ثَمُوۡدَ اَخَاهُمۡ صٰلِحًا​ ۘ قَالَ يٰقَوۡمِ اعۡبُدُوۡا اللّٰهَ مَا لَـكُمۡ مِّنۡ اِلٰهٍ غَيۡرُهٗ​ ؕ قَدۡ جَآءَتۡكُمۡ بَيِّنَةٌ مِّنۡ رَّبِّكُمۡ​ ؕ هٰذِهٖ نَاقَةُ اللّٰهِ لَـكُمۡ اٰيَةً​ فَذَرُوۡهَا تَاۡكُلۡ فِىۡۤ اَرۡضِ اللّٰهِ​ وَلَا تَمَسُّوۡهَا بِسُوۡٓءٍ فَيَاۡخُذَكُمۡ عَذَابٌ اَ لِيۡمٌ‏ 

(Al Quran 7:73) “And to Thamud, We sent forth their brother. Salih. He said to them: '0 my people! Serve Allah; you have no other god than Him. Truly there has come to you a clear proof from your Lord. This she-camel from Allah is a Divine portent for you. So leave her alone to pasture on Allah's earth, and touch her with no evil lest a painful chastisement should seize you.”

The context seems to indicate that the clear proof referred to in the verse stands for the she-camel, which is also spoken of as 'a Divine portent.' In(al-Shu'ara' 26: 154-8) it is explicitly mentioned that the Thamud themselves had asked the Prophet Salih علیہ السلامto produce some sign which would support his claim to be God's Messenger. Responding to it, Salih علیہ السلامpointed to the she-camel. 

This illustrates clearly that the appearance of the she-camel was a miracle. Similar miracles had been performed earlier by other Prophets to fulfil the demand of the unbelievers and thus of vindicating their claim to prophethood. The miraculous appearance of the she-camel reinforces the fact that Salih had presented it as a 'Divine portent' and warned his people of dire consequences if they harmed it. He explained to them that the she-camel would graze freely in their fields; that on alternate days she and other animals would drink water from their well, They were also warned that if they harmed the she-camel, they would be immediately seized by a terrible chastisement' from God. 

Such statements could obviously only have been made about an animal which was known to be miraculous. The Thamud observed the she-camel graze freely in their fields, and she and the other camels drank water on alternate days from their well. The Thamud, though unhappy with the situation, endured this for quite some time. Later, however, after prolonged deliberations, they killed her. Such lengthy deliberations demonstrate that they were afraid to kill the she-camel. It is clear that the object of their fear was none other than the she-camel as they had no reason to be afraid of Salih, who had no power to terrify them. Their sense of awe for the she-camel explains why they let her graze freely on their land. The Qur'an, however, does not provide any detailed information as to what the she-camel looked like or how she was born. The authentic Hadith to provide no information about its miraculous birth. Hence, one need not take too seriously the statements of some of the commentators on the Qur'an about the mode of her birth. However, as far as the fact of her miraculous birth is concerned, that is borne out by the Qur'an itself.1

The Miracle of Restoring Life to a Dead City  

اَوۡ كَالَّذِىۡ مَرَّ عَلٰى قَرۡيَةٍ وَّ هِىَ خَاوِيَةٌ عَلٰى عُرُوۡشِهَا ​ۚ قَالَ اَنّٰى يُحۡىٖ هٰذِهِ اللّٰهُ بَعۡدَ مَوۡتِهَا ​ۚ فَاَمَاتَهُ اللّٰهُ مِائَةَ عَامٍ ثُمَّ بَعَثَهٗ ​ؕ قَالَ كَمۡ لَبِثۡتَ​ؕ قَالَ لَبِثۡتُ يَوۡمًا اَوۡ بَعۡضَ يَوۡمٍ​ؕ قَالَ بَلۡ لَّبِثۡتَ مِائَةَ عَامٍ فَانۡظُرۡ اِلٰى طَعَامِكَ وَشَرَابِكَ لَمۡ يَتَسَنَّهۡ​ۚ وَانْظُرۡ اِلٰى حِمَارِكَ وَلِنَجۡعَلَكَ اٰيَةً لِّلنَّاسِ​ وَانْظُرۡ اِلَى الۡعِظَامِ كَيۡفَ نُـنۡشِزُهَا ثُمَّ نَكۡسُوۡهَا لَحۡمًا ​ؕ فَلَمَّا تَبَيَّنَ لَهٗ ۙ قَالَ اَعۡلَمُ اَنَّ اللّٰهَ عَلٰى كُلِّ شَىۡءٍ قَدِيۡرٌ‏

(Al Quran 2:259) “Or consider him by way of example who passed by a town that was fallen down upon its turrets. He exclaimed: “How will Allah restore life to this town that is now dead?”

Allah then caused him to remain dead for a hundred years and then raised him to life, and asked him: “How long did you remain in this state?” He replied: “I remained so for a day or a part of a day.” Allah rejoined: “No, you have rather stayed thus for a hundred years. But look at your food and your drink, there is no deterioration in them. And look at your ass (how its entire skeleton has rotted)! And We did all this so that We might make you a token of instruction for people.295 And see how We will put the bones (of the ass) together and will clothe them with flesh.” Thus when the reality became clear to him, he said: “I know that Allah has power over everything.”

It is irrelevant to ask who the person was and the place where this incident occurred. The real purpose of mentioning this event is to show how God showed light to the one who had chosen God as his protector and supporter. As for determining the name of the person and the locality, we neither possess the means to do so nor is such an endeavour in any way beneficial. What seems to be evident from the statement that follows is that the person concerned must necessarily have been a Prophet.

This question does not signify that the person concerned denied or entertained any doubts regarding life after death. His enquiry merely indicates his wish to have direct knowledge of reality, like the Prophets of the past.

The restoration of life to a man considered to have died a hundred years ago was in itself sufficient to make him, for his contemporaries, a living testimony.2

The Spring of Remedy for Ayyub (Job)’s Disease

وَاذۡكُرۡ عَبۡدَنَاۤ اَيُّوۡبَۘ اِذۡ نَادٰى رَبَّهٗۤ اَنِّىۡ مَسَّنِىَ الشَّيۡطٰنُ بِنُصۡبٍ وَّعَذَابٍؕ‏ 

اُرۡكُضۡ بِرِجۡلِكَ​ ۚ هٰذَا مُغۡتَسَلٌ ۢ بَارِدٌ وَّشَرَابٌ

(Al- Quran 38:41-42) And remember Our servant Job:41 when he cried to his Lord: “Behold, Satan has afflicted me with much hardship and suffering. (We commanded him): “Stamp your foot on earth, and here is cool water to wash with and to drink.”

That is, as soon as he stamped his foot on the ground, a spring gushed forth by Allah’s command, drinking from which and washing with which was the remedy of the Prophet Job’s (peace be upon him) disease. Most probably, he was suffering from some skin disease. According to the Bible also: Satan smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot unto his crown. (Job, 2: 7).3

Miracles of Prophet Ibrahim (Abraham) علیہ السلام

Incident of making four birds alive

وَاِذۡ قَالَ اِبۡرٰهٖمُ رَبِّ اَرِنِىۡ كَيۡفَ تُحۡىِ الۡمَوۡتٰى ؕ قَالَ اَوَلَمۡ تُؤۡمِنۡ​ؕ قَالَ بَلٰى وَلٰـكِنۡ لِّيَطۡمَـئِنَّ قَلۡبِىۡ​ؕ قَالَ فَخُذۡ اَرۡبَعَةً مِّنَ الطَّيۡرِ فَصُرۡهُنَّ اِلَيۡكَ ثُمَّ اجۡعَلۡ عَلٰى كُلِّ جَبَلٍ مِّنۡهُنَّ جُزۡءًا ثُمَّ ادۡعُهُنَّ يَاۡتِيۡنَكَ سَعۡيًا ​ؕ وَاعۡلَمۡ اَنَّ اللّٰهَ عَزِيۡزٌ حَكِيۡمٌ‏

(Al Quran 2:260) “And recall when Abraham said: “My Lord, show me how You give life to the dead,” Allah said: “Why! Do you have no faith?” Abraham replied: “Yes, but in order that my heart be at rest.” He said: “Then take four birds, and tame them to yourself, then put a part of them on every hill, and summon them; they will come to you flying. Know well that Allah is All-Mighty, All-Wise.”

The birth of a child in old age

فَبَشَّرۡنٰهَا بِاِسۡحٰقَ ۙ وَمِنۡ وَّرَآءِ اِسۡحٰقَ يَعۡقُوۡبَ‏قَالَتۡ يٰوَيۡلَتٰٓى ءَاَلِدُ وَاَنَا عَجُوۡزٌ وَّهٰذَا بَعۡلِىۡ شَيۡخًا ​ؕ اِنَّ هٰذَا لَشَىۡءٌ عَجِيۡبٌ‏  قَالُوۡۤا اَتَعۡجَبِيۡنَ مِنۡ اَمۡرِ اللّٰهِ​ رَحۡمَتُ اللّٰهِ وَبَرَكٰتُهٗ عَلَيۡكُمۡ اَهۡلَ الۡبَيۡتِ​ؕ اِنَّهٗ حَمِيۡدٌ مَّجِيۡدٌ‏ 

(Al-Quran 11:71-73) And Abraham's wife was standing by and on hearing this she laughed.78 And We gave her the good news of (the birth of) Isaac, and after Isaac, of Jacob. She said: 'Woe is me!80 Shall I bear a child now that I am an old woman and my husband is well advanced in years. This is indeed strange!' They said: 'Do you wonder at Allah's decree? Allah's mercy and His blessings be upon you, O people of the house. Surely, He is Praiseworthy, Glorious.'

Ibrahim’s Protection from fire

قَالُوا ابۡنُوۡا لَهٗ بُنۡيَانًا فَاَلۡقُوۡهُ فِى الۡجَحِيۡمِ‏ فَاَرَادُوۡا بِهٖ كَيۡدًا فَجَعَلۡنٰهُمُ الۡاَسۡفَلِيۡنَ

(Al-Quran 37:97-98) They spoke among themselves: “Build him a pyre and then throw him into the furnace.” They had contrived an evil plan against him, but We abased them all.

  1. Surah Al-Ar’af, Explanatory Note 58
  2. Surah Al Baqra N. 293-295
  1. Surah Sad 43

 

(From Urdu book Seerat e Sarwar Alam vol. 1, by Syed Abul A'ala Maududi (b.1903 –d.1979), compiled in Urdu by Naeem Siddiqui and Abdul Wakeel Alvi)

 

Syed Jawed Anwar

 

jawed@seerahwest.com

 

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