05 Nov Belief in Prophets: Part 1
What does belief in prophets mean?
This means firm belief that Allah ﷻ sent a messenger to every nation and community, calling its members to worship Allah alone without any partners, that all Allah’s messengers were truthful, virtuous, trustworthy and rightly-guided servants who strove hard to guide their people to the right path and conveyed Allah’s message to them in full, without concealing, omitting or adding anything to it. The Qur’an says, “Therefore, the messengers’ obligation is no more than to convey the message clearly.” (An-Nahl, 35)
The great people that Allah chose as messengers in order to inform His slaves about His orders and prohibitions are called prophets.
Belief in prophets means to believe that Allah sent messengers called prophets to human beings in order to inform them about His orders and prohibitions, to accept the duty of prophethood and to approve that the people who are mentioned as prophets in the Quran are prophets.
Although prophets are human beings like us, they are distinguished slaves of Allah. A person cannot be a prophet by working and trying hard. Prophethood is an endowment of Allah.
It Is One of the Pillars of Faith
Belief in Allah’s messengers is one of the six pillars of eemaan (faith), as the Qur’an states, “The Messenger believes in that which has been revealed to him from his Lord and so do the believers. Each one believes in Allah and His angels and His books and His messengers.” (Al-Baqarah, 285)
This verse makes it abundantly clear that we must believe in all of Allah’s messengers without making a distinction between any of them. We must not, therefore, believe in some of them and reject some others, as did the Jews and the Christians.
Defining eemaan (faith), the Prophet ﷺ also said in this connection, “It is to believe in Allah, His angels, His books, His messengers and the Last Day, and to believe in the divine decree, both good and bad.” (Saheeh Muslim: 8)
What is Prophethood?
Prophets are distinguished people that Allah chooses among people. They inform people about His religion, that is, His commands and prohibitions. They give the glad tidings of reward both in the world and hereafter to those who believe and do good deeds; they warn unbelievers who do bad deeds of torture of hell…
The following is stated in the Quran:
“We send the Messengers only to give good news and to warn: so those who believe and mend (their lives)”. al-An’am, 48
Prophets are distinguished slaves of Allah. A person cannot be a prophet by working, trying hard and asking. Prophethood is an endowment of Allah.
Prophets are the leaders of the humankind. We are ordered in the Quran to accept them as models, to tread in their footsteps and to resemble them since they are in the highest level of servitude to Allah, away from acting in accordance with the desires of their souls and from committing sins:
“Those were the (prophets) who received Allah’s guidance: Follow the guidance they received.” al-An’am, 90
“Ye have indeed in the Messenger of Allah a beautiful pattern (of conduct) for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Final Day, and who engages much in the praise of Allah.” al-Ahzab, 21
In this dua (prayer), which Muslims recite in every salah (prayer),
“Show us the straight way. The way of those on whom Thou hast bestowed Thy Grace”, ‘prophets’ are in the first place among those that have been bestowed grace. Muslims accept prophets as models and follow their guidance. Prophets were chosen among human beings not among other beings because of being accepted as models. It is clear that the one that can serve as the best model for human beings can only be a human being.
People’s Need for a Divine Message
People need a divine message to show them Allah’s laws and guide them to the right path. Indeed, a divine message is the spirit, light and the very life of the world, without which the world would certainly be lifeless and man would be plunged into the darkness of ignorance and misguidance?
It is for this reason that Almighty Allah calls His message a spirit, for there is no life without a spirit, as the Qur’an says, “We have thus revealed a Spirit to you by Our command. You knew neither the Scripture nor the faith, but We made it a light, guiding with it whomever We will of Our servants. You are indeed guiding to the straight path.” (Ash-Shooraa, 52)
Even though the intellect can generally distinguish between right and wrong, it cannot possibly comprehend the details of such a distinction, nor carry out acts of worship in the right manner without the dictates of revelation and the divine message.
Therefore, success and happiness can only be attained by following the guidance of Allah’s messengers. Similarly, no accurate line of demarcation can be drawn between right and wrong without following in their footsteps. Thus, whoever rejects the divine message will definitely lead a miserable and wretched life depending on the extent of their rejection of it.