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The Sealed Nectar

 The Sealed Nectar by Shaykh Safi ur-Rahman

When they entered into the Prophet’s (Peace be upon him) audience, a tent was pitched up in a corner of the mosque so that they might listen to the Qur’ân and see people at prayer. During their stay they came again and again to the Prophet (Peace be upon him) who kept on calling them to embrace Islam, till their chief asked the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) to enter into a peace treaty between him and Thaqif by means of which he allows them to commit fornication, drink wine and deal with usury. They also asked him not to injure their tyrant idol “Al-Lat” or to oblige them to perform the prayer. Finally they insisted that they would not knock down the idols themselves. But the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) turned down all their requests. They went aside to council. Realizing that there were no other alternatives they yielded and professed Islam. The only condition that they insisted on was that the demolition of Al-Lat should be dealt with and handled by the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) whereas Thaqif should in no way knock it down themselves. The Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) agreed and took a pledge with them.

Being the most attentive and the keenest to study jurisprudence and learn Qur’ân, ‘Uthman bin Abi Al-‘As was appointed by the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) a prince on his people. His keenness and carefulness to learn the Qur’ân and study jurisprudence were clearly discernible through his behaviour during their stay.

Everyday morning, the group of delegates used to go and see the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him). Being the youngest one, ‘Uthman bin Abi Al-‘As was left behind with their camels and things to keep an eye on. At noon when they came back and slept, ‘Uthman used to go to the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) in order to learn the Qur’ân and inquire about religious matters. If it happened that the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) was asleep, he would then go to Abu Bakr for the same purpose. With the pof time, he turned out to be a source of blessing to his people. For at the Apostasy Times (Ar-Riddah) when Thaqif were determined to apostatize, he addressed them saying: “O, folkmen of Thaqif! You have been the latest at embracing Islam, so do not be the first to apostatize.” Consequently they gave up apostasy and clung fast to Islam.

The group of delegates returned home but they were determined to conceal the truth for a while. They told their people to expect fight at any moment. They pretended to be grieved and depressed. They claimed that the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) demanded that they should embrace Islam and abandon adultery, drinking wine and dealing with usury and some other things, or else he would fight them. Seized by the arrogance and zeal of Al-Jahiliyah (pre-Islamic traditions), Thaqif remained for days intent on fighting. Then Allâh cast terror and dismay in their hearts in such a way that they gave up fighting and thought that the delegation should go back to him and announce their approval. It was until then that the group of delegates told them the truth and revealed the items of their peace-talk with the Prophet, consequently Thaqif embraced Islam.

The Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) sent some men to demolish the idol called “Al-Lat” under the command of Khalid bin Al-Waleed. Al-Mugheerah bin Shu‘bah, stood to his feet, held the hoe and the ax and said: “By Allâh, I will make you laugh at Thaqif.” He struck with them, and pretended to fall down while running. The people of Thaqif trembled at that sight and said: “May Allâh dismay Al-Mugheerah off. The goddess has killed him.” Hearing that Al-Mugheerah leapt up to his feet and said: “May Allâh bring shame on you. Al-Lat is nothing but a mass of dirt and stones.” Then he struck the door and broke it. He mounted its highest wall, and so did the other men. They knocked Al-Lat down till they levelled it with the ground. Then they dug up its foundation and brought out its jewels and garments; to the great astonishment of Thaqif. Khalid bin Al-Waleed and his group came back to the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) carrying Al-Lat’s jewels and garments. The Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) distributed them and thanked Allâh for helping his Prophet and solidifying his religion.

The message of the Yemeni kings: After the return of the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) from Tabuk, a message came to him from the kings of Himyar, Al-Harith bin ‘Abd Kilal, Na‘eem bin ‘Abd Kilal, An-Nu‘man bin Qeel Dhi Ra‘in, Hamdan and Mu‘afir. Their messenger was Malik bin Murrah Ar-Rahawi. They sent him in order to inform the Prophet (Peace be upon him) about their embracing Islam and their parting with polytheism. In reply to their message, the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) gave them the pledge of Allâh and the pledge of His Messenger provided they paid the tribute, which was still overdue. He sent to them some of his Companions under the command of Mu‘adh bin Jabal (May Allah be pleased with him).
Hamdan Delegation: The arrival of this delegation was in the ninth year of Al-Hijra after the Messenger’s return from Tabuk. So the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) gave them a pledge to guarantee the fulfillment of their demands. He sent to them Malik bin An-Namt as their chief, and appointed him as an agent on those of his people who embraced Islam. Khalid bin Al-Waleed was appointed for them all with a purpose of calling them to Islam. He stayed with them for six months calling them to Islam but no one responded to his call. Later on ‘Ali bin Abi Talib was dispatched there and Khalid was ordered to come back. Upon arriving at Hamdan, ‘Ali communicated to them a message from the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) and called them to Islam. They responded to the call and became Muslims. ‘Ali wrote to the Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) informing him of the good tidings. The Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) was briefed on the content of that letter, so he prostrated, then raised his head up and said: “Peace be upon Hamdan. Peace be upon Hamdan.”
The Delegation of Bani Fazarah: Upon the Messenger’s return from Tabuk, the delegation of Bani Fazarah came to see him. That was in the ninth year of Al-Hijra. The group of delegates were over ten men. They came in order to profess Islam and complain about the drought of their region. The Messenger of Allâh (Peace be upon him) ascended the pulpit, lifted his hands up and implored Allâh to send rain forth onto them and said:

“O Allâh let rain fall down, and water Your country and animals, and spread Your mercy and bring to life the dead lands. O Allâh send rain that would be saving, comforting, and sprouting grass, and overwhelming vast areas sooner and later. Let it be useful rain and not harmful. O Allâh let it be rain of mercy and not rain of torture and chastisement. Let that rain not be destructive or floody. O Allâh send us down water and help to fight the enemies.”
Najran’s Delegation: Najran is rather a big area of land. It was at a distance of seven trip stages southwards of Makkah towards Yemen. It included seventy three villages. It took a fast-rider one day ride to get there. Its military forces consisted of a hundred thousand fighters.
Their arrival was in the year 9 A.H. The delegation comprised sixty men. Twenty-four of them were of noble families. Three out of twenty-four were at one time leaders of Najran. Al-‘Aqib, i.e. who was in charge of princehood and government affairs. His name was ‘Abdul Maseeh. The second was As-Saiyid (the Master) under whose supervision were the educational and political affairs; his name was Al-Aiham or Sharhabeel. Abu Haritha bin ‘Alqamah was the third. He was a bishop to whom all religious presidency and spiritual leadership belonged and were his charge.
When that group of delegates arrived in Madinah, they met the Prophet (Peace be upon him), exchanged inquiries with him; but when he called them to Islam and recited the Qur’ân to them, they refused. They asked him what he thought about ‘Isa (i.e. Jesus), (Peace be upon him), he (Peace be upon him) tarried a whole day till the following Qur’ânic reply was revealed to him:

“Verily, the likeness of Jesus before Allâh is the likeness of Adam. He created him from dust, then (He) said to him: ‘Be!’ — and he was. (This is) the truth from your Lord, so be not of those who doubt. Then whoever disputes with you concerning him (Jesus) after (all this) knowledge that has come to you, (i.e. Jesus being a slave of Allâh, and having no share in Divinity) say: [O Muhammad (Peace be upon him)] ‘Come, let us call our sons and your sons, our women and your women, ourselves and yourselves — then we pray and invoke (sincerely) the Curse of Allâh upon those who lie.” [3:59-61]