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Prophet Muhammad As Witness In Meaning of Hadhir Nazir Over Nations Earlier Prophets.

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Prophet Muhammad As Witness In Meaning of Hadhir Nazir Over Nations Earlier Prophets.

Introduction:

RasoolAllah (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) and his Ummah will be called to testify on day of judgment in defense of Prophets. Ummah would bear witness but will acknowledge its source of information is last/final Prophet of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala). Then Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) would testify against the disbelievers of previous nations.

1.1 - Prophets Sent To Every Nations To Warn And Deliver Good News:

Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) stated in Quran:
“O People of the Scripture, there has come to you Our Messenger to make clear to you [the religion] after a period [of suspension] of Messengers, lest you say: ‘There came not to us any bringer of good tidings or a warner.’ But there has come to you a bringer of good tidings and a warner. And Allah is over all things competent.” [Ref: 5:19] Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) also states mankind were sent Messengers to guide them and warn them: [We sent] Messengers as bringers of good tidings and warners so that mankind will have no argument against Allah after the messengers. And ever is Allah Exalted in Might and Wise.” [Ref: 4:165] Following verses also imply mankind and Jinn were sent Prophets: “It almost bursts up with fury. Every time a group is cast therein, its keeper will ask: "did no warner come to you?” [Ref: 67:8] "’O company of Jinn and mankind, did there not come to you Messengers from among you, relating to you My verses and warning you of the meeting of this Day of yours?’” [Ref: 6:130] The topic continues pointing out that the disbelievers would acknowledge Messengers came to them but due to being deluded they disbelieved in their teachings: “They will say: ‘We bear witness against ourselves.’ And the worldly life had deluded them, and they will bear witness against themselves that they were disbelievers. That is because your Lord would not destroy the cities for wrongdoing while their people were unaware.“ [Ref: 6:131] Ultimately the residents of hell and paradise would acknowledge the reality that Prophets came to them as established by following verses: “Do they await except its result? The Day its result comes those who had ignored it before will say: ‘The Messengers of our Lord had come with the truth, so are there [now] any intercessors to intercede for us or could we be sent back to do other than we used to do?’ They will have lost themselves, and lost from them is what they used to invent.” [Ref: 7:53] “And We will have removed whatever is within their breasts of resentment, [while] flowing beneath them are rivers. And they will say: ‘Praise to Allah, who has guided us to this; and we would never have been guided if Allah had not guided us. Certainly the messengers of our Lord had come with the truth.’ And they will be called, "This is Paradise, which you have been made to inherit for what you used to do." [Ref: 7:43]

1.2 - Prophets Delivered To Nations The Revelation Entrusted To Them:

Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) states Prophets; Nuh (alayhis salam), Hud (alayhis salam), Prophet Salih (alayhis salam), Prophet Shu’ayb (alayhis salam), conveyed the Wahi entrusted to them in following verses: [Prophet Nuh alayhis salam] said: "O my people, there is not error in me, but I am a Messenger from the Lord of the worlds. I convey to you the messages of my Lord and advise you; and I know from Allah what you do not know.” [Ref: 7:62/63] “And to the Aad [We sent] their brother Hud. He said: ‘O my people, worship Allah; you have no deity other than Him. Then will you not fear Him?’ Said the eminent ones who disbelieved among his people: ‘Indeed, we see you in foolishness, and indeed, we think you are of the liars.’ I convey to you the messages of my Lord, and I am to you a trustworthy adviser.” [Ref: 7:65/68] “But if they turn away [say]: ‘I have already conveyed that with which I was sent to you. My Lord will give succession to a people other than you, and you will not harm Him at all. Indeed my Lord is, over all things, Guardian.’" [Ref: 11:57] “So they hamstrung the she-camel and were insolent toward the command of their Lord and said: ‘O Salih, bring us what you promise us, if you should be from the Messengers.’ So the earthquake seized them, and they became within their home [corpses] fallen prone. And he turned away from them and said: ‘O my people, I had certainly conveyed to you the message of my Lord and advised you, but you do not like advisors.’” [Ref: 7:77/79] “Those who denied Shu'ayb - it was as though they had never resided there. Those who denied Shu'ayb - it was they who were the losers. And he turned away from them and said: ‘O my people, I had certainly conveyed to you the messages of my Lord and advised you, so how could I grieve for a disbelieving people?’" [Ref: 7:92/93]
In the following verse it is recorded that Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) protects all the Prophets until they have conveyed the message given to them. Implications of which is all Messengers get to convey the Wahi entrusted to them: "(He Alone is) the all-Knower of the Ghayb and He reveals to none His Ghayb. Except to a Messenger (from mankind) whom He has chosen and then He makes a band of watching guards to march before him and behind him (i.e. Allah protects the Messengers). Till He sees that they (the Messengers) have conveyed the Messages of their Lord. And He records all that which is with them, and He keeps count of all things.” [Ref: 72:26/28]

2.1 - Questioning Disbelievers On Judgment If Messengers Conveyed Message:

Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) said: “Then We will surely question those to whom [a message] was sent, and We will surely question the messengers.“ [Ref: 7:6] The nations of Prophets will be asked how did they respond to the Messengers sent to guide them but they will unable to respond due to fear of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala): “And [mention] the Day He will call them and say: ‘What did you answer the Messengers?’ But the information will be unapparent to them that Day, so they will not [be able to] ask one another.” [Ref: 28:65/66] Prophets too will be questioned and due to fear of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and humility they will respond they have no knowledge: "On the Day when Allah will gather the Messengers together and say to them: 'What was the response you received?' They will say: 'We have no knowledge, verily, only You are the Knower of all that is unseen.'" [Ref: 5:109] Yet Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) makes it clear that Messengers will be supported by Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and not left to devices of disbelievers of their own nations: “Indeed, We will support Our Messengers and those who believe during the life of this world and on the Day when the witnesses will stand.” [Ref: 40:51]

2.2 - Prophets Will Say We Conveyed Message, Ummatis Would Deny It:

Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) states from every nation a Prophet will be brought forward to be witness against his nation [and after evidence against them will be gathered] Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) will say to disbelievers to produce your proof [of your claim that no Prophet was sent to you and you did not receive the message of Wahi]: “And We will extract from every nation a witness and say [to disbelievers of every nation]: ‘Produce your proof and they will know that the truth belongs to Allah, and lost from them is that which they used to invent.’“ [Ref: 28:75] It is recorded in many Ahadith, I will employ just one, that on judgment day Prophets will be called and asked if they delivered the Wahi entrusted to them? The Prophets would answer the question with yes but when their nations will be questioned if a Prophet came to them and delivered the Wahi they would reply in negative:
“A Prophet will come accompanied by two men, and a Prophet will come accompanied by three, and (some will come) with more or less than that. It will be said to him: ‘Did you convey the message to your people?’ And he will say: ‘Yes.’ Then his people will be called and it will be said: ‘Did he convey the message to you?’ They will say: ‘No!’” Then Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) will enquire from every Prophet; who will bear witness for you. and they would say Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) and his Ummah: “Then it will be said: ‘Who will bear witness for you?’ He will say: ‘Muhammad and his nation.’ So the nation of Muhammad will be called and it will be said: ‘Did this man convey the message?’ They will say: ‘Yes.’” Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) would then question about the source of information: “He [Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala] will say: ‘How did you know that?’ They will say: ‘Our Prophet told us that the Messengers had conveyed the message, and we believed him.’“[2] [Ref: Ibn Majah, B37, H4425] This establishes Muslims would testify because the Messenger informed the Muslims and its not their direct experience. This is testimony of faith like the companion testified on horse issue sale that Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is truthful in his claim that he sale was agreed. Or as we testify and profess with our tongue and heart; I bear witness none has the right to be worshipped except Allah and I bear witness Muhammad is Abd and Rasool of Allah. We are not actually witnessing Tawheed of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and that He alone has the right to be worshipped. Instead we are attesting to our actual belief and to which we’re witness upon.

2.3 - Prophet Muhammad And His Nation Would Testify Against Every Ummah:

The last/final Ummah will testify in defense of Prophets: So the nation of Muhammad will be called and it will be said: ‘Did this man convey the message?’ They will say: ‘Yes.’” The Hadith continues to establish Ummah is testifying after being informed by Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam): “He will say: ‘How did you know that?’ They will say: ‘Our Prophet told us that the Messengers had conveyed the message, and we believed him.’ This is what Allah says: “Thus We have made you, a just (and the best) nation, that you be witnesses over mankind and the Messenger be a witness over you.[1]’” [Ref: Ibn Majah, B37, H4425] Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) will be called to bear witness. Following verses of Quran alludes to this incident in Quran: "How then if We brought from each people a [Prophet sent as a] witness, and We brought you as a witness against these people!" [Ref: 4:41] “One day We shall raise from all peoples a witness against them, from amongst themselves: and We shall bring you as a witness against these (people): and We have sent down to thee the Book explaining all things, a Guide, a Mercy, and Glad Tidings to Muslims.” [Ref: 16:89] The verse is referring to last/final Ummah and Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) being witness against previous nations: "Thus, have We made of you an Ummat justly balanced, that ye might be witnesses over the nations, and the Messenger a witness over yourselves; ..." [Ref: 2:143] And when the witness bear witness against former nations then Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) will tell the disbelievers of former nations to produce their proof that no Prophet came to you to convey the Wahi of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala): “And We will extract from every nation a witness and say [to disbelievers of every nation]: ‘Produce your proof and they will know that the truth belongs to Allah, and lost from them is that which they used to invent.’“ [Ref: 28:75] And they will be unable to provide any proof in their defense.

3.1 - Difference In Prophet Muhammad’s Witnessing And Witnessing Of His Nation:

Hadith records:
“He [Allah subhanahu wa ta’ala] will say: ‘How did you know that?’ They will say: ‘Our Prophet told us that the Messengers had conveyed the message, and we believed him.’“ [Ref: Ibn Majah, B37, H4425] Upon witnessing of Ummah Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) questioned what was the source of their information but when Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) testified in support of the Prophets there was no question about how Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) gained this knowledge. Note Ummah directly witnessing was negated and it was made clear that they were bearing witness because Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) had informed them. This establishes; testimony of Ummah of last/final Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is testimony/witnessing of their own faith in truthfulness and their trustworthiness of Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi aalihi was’sallam). And they are not bearing witness as first hand witnesses. If witnessing of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) was due to being informed by another, Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala), then this was perfect opportunity to negate his own direct witnessing of events. Absence of this negation is proof that his witnessing was direct; he actually witnessed all the events related to earlier Prophets. Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) negated direct witnessing of his Ummatis because to believe they are direct witnesses must have contravened with Islamic teaching. And to believe he directly witnessed the events was in line with Islamic teaching therefore he allowed this interpretation unchecked.[3] In a verse it is stated: "How then if We brought from each people a [Prophet sent as a] witness, and We brought you [O Prophet Muhammad] as a witness against these people!" [Ref: 4:41] A truthful witness is one who has seen/heard the events about which one bears witness about and it would be against the truthfulness of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) to testify without hearing/seeing. And it would be against justice of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) to accept a testimony of one who has not seen/heard the events about which he bears witness about. And there is no textual proof for Taweel; which would suggest prophetic testimony was of his faith in revelation of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) and therefore natural conclusion must be Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) will testify against the disbelievers of previous nations because he directly witnessed the events as they transpired.

3.2 – Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) Witnessed All:

Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) enquired from Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam); what the angels are disputing about? Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) replied that he is not aware and Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) made him aware of everything: "Then I saw Him put his palms between my shoulder blades till I felt the coldness of his fingers between the two sides of my chest. Then everything was illuminated for me and I recognized everything. He said: Muhammad! I said: At Thy service, my Lord. He said: What do these high angels contend about? I said: In regard to expiations. He said: What are these?" [Ref: Tirmadhi, Vol5, H3246, Tafsir Surah Sad] Hadith recorded Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) said: "Narrated Hakim Bin Nafi, Saeed Bin Sinan, narrated Abu Zahriyat, Kathir Bin Murra Abu Shajara al-Hadhrami, Ibn Umar said: Abdullah bin Umar (radi Allahu anhuma) that Sayyiduna Rasoolullah (sallallahu alayhi wasallam) said: "Indeed this entire world is in front of me so that I can observe everything in it. I can see everything in this world and everything that will take place till the Day of Qiyamah. I see the entire world as I see the palm of my hand". [Ref: Kitab al-Fitan, 1st Chapter, Hadith No. 2, by Hafidh Naeem Bin Hammad al-Marwazi]
"It is reported by Hazrat Abdullah bin Umar (radi Allahu anhuma) that Sayyiduna Rasoolullah (sallal laahu alaihi wasallam) said: "Indeed this entire world is in front of me so that I can observe everything in it. I can see everything in this world and everything that will take place till the Day of Qiyamah. I see the entire world as I see the palm of my hand". [Ref: Mawahib al-Laduniyyah bil-Manahi al-Muhammadiyyah, Vol7, Page204] Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) was seeing during his life all that was going to happen till the day of judgment and all that was happening during his life time. And if he could see the future he could see the past with permission and power granted to him by Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala). Another Hadith records Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) detailed all events that transpired from beginning of creation till judgment day: “Narrated Umar: One day the Prophet stood up amongst us for a long period and informed us about the beginning of creation (and talked about everything in detail) till he mentioned how the people of Paradise will enter their places and the people of Hell will enter their places. Some remembered what he had said, and some forgot it.” [Ref: Bukhari, B54, H414] He could only educate his companions what transpired so comprehensively if he witnessed the events and remembered. And many verses of Quran rhetorically imply Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) saw events which predate his birth. Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) has insinuated this: Have you not seen how your Lord dealt with Aad!” [Ref: 89:6] “Have you not seen how your Lord dealt with the companions/army of elephant!” [Ref: 105:1] Have you not seen those elders of the children of Israel after the time of Moses!” [Ref: 2:246]

Conclusion:

It is clearly recorded in Quran; Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) sent Prophets to all the nations and they delivered the message of Wahi entrusted to them. On the day of judgment Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) would questions every Prophet and their nations of Prophets had come to them and if they conveyed the message. The disbelievers would deny receiving the message of Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) but the Prophets would affirm that they have delivered the message. Every Prophet would be asked who will testify on their behalf and they would say Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) and his Ummah. The last/final Ummah would be questioned if Prophets have delivered the message and they would answer yes. Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) would question them how they know this and they would say Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) informed them that Prophets delivered the message. It is unclear if Ummatis would be referring to Quranic verses, quoted in article, or Prophetic teaching found in Hadith. Whatever the case it establishes Ummah’s witnessing is based on trust in Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) and demonstration of their faith in his claim of Prophet-hood. This witnessing would be no different from how we the Muslims testify; ashadu al-la ilaha il-Allah, as means of demonstrating our Eman in Islam. And this testimony is not of actual witness who witnesses to truth of it with sight and hearing to reality of Shahadatayn. After the witnessing of Ummah then Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) will testify; Prophets delivered the message of Wahi, as a first hand witness. There is no evidence available to suggest and legitimize an alternative understanding of prophetic witnessing as is in the case of Ummah of RasoolAllah (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). The prophetic Takhsees made for witnessing of Ummah could easily have been turned inclusive for witnessing of Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) if he willed so. And absence of such Takhsees strengthens Islamic understanding that Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) allowed orthodox interpretation; Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) was first hand witness therefore Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) did not limit his witnessing to witnessing of his own Eman like he did for his Ummah.

Wama alayna ilal balaghul mubeen.
Muhammed Ali Razavi.

Footnotes:


- [1] “It was narrated from Abu Sa’eed that the Messenger of Allah said: “A Prophet will come accompanied by two men, and a Prophet will come accompanied by three, and (some will come) with more or less than that. It will be said to him: ‘Did you convey the message to your people?’ And he will say: ‘Yes.’ Then his people will be called and it will be said: ‘Did he convey the message to you?’ They will say: ‘No.’ Then it will be said: ‘Who will bear witness for you?’ He will say: ‘Muhammad and his nation.’ So the nation of Muhammad will be called and it will be said: ‘Did this man convey the message?’ They will say: ‘Yes.’ He will say: ‘How did you know that?’ They will say: ‘Our Prophet told us that the Messengers had conveyed the message, and we believed him.’ This is what Allah says: “Thus We have made you, a just (and the best) nation, that you be witnesses over mankind and the Messenger be a witness over you.’” [Ref: Ibn Majah, B37, H4425]

- [2] “... ‘Did this one convey the message to you?’ and they will say, ‘No.’ It will be said to him: ‘Did you convey the message to your people?’ and he will say: ‘Yes.’ It will be said to him: ‘Who will bear witness for you?’ He will say: ‘Muhammad and his Ummah.’ So Muhammad and his Ummah will be called, and it will be said to them: ‘Did this one convey the message to his people?’ They will say: ‘Yes.’ It will be said: ‘How did you know that?’ They will say: ‘Our Prophet came to us and told us that the Messengers had conveyed the message.’ That is the words of Allah: ‘Thus We have made you a just (and the best) nation.’ He said: Just, so that you will be witnesses over mankind and the Messenger will be a witness over you.’” [Ref: Musnad Imam Ahmad, Hadith 1164, Sunan Ibn Maajah, Hadith 4284]

- [3] Heretics will attempt to refute Hadhir Nazir by arguing: No because the natural implications was; Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) informed the Ummah and Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) informed the Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). Therefore there was no need to explicitly state; Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) didn’t see the events like his Ummah didn’t see. This belief of heretics is based on Qiyas, analogy, drawn between the ordinary Ummatis and Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam). This Qiyas is of those people who want people to believe Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) is an ordinary human being entrusted to deliver the message of Islam. And therefore they attempt to portray him as an ordinary human being by equating and drawing comparison of him with ordinary people. Even though negation of Ummatis being direct witnesses by default does not imply the same is also true for Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam); it would be best to address it from neutral point of view. PartA: There’re two possibilities; i)  Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) informed the Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) and he informed the Ummah, ii) Prophet Muhammad (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) directly witnessed as they transpired and he informed his Ummah i.e. he was Hadhir Nazir Noorani’an and Roohani'an. PartB: The two possibilities produce following results; i) Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) directly did not witness the events of former nations but Allah (subhanahu wa ta’ala) witnessed these events and informed Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) and he then informed his own Ummah. Therefore Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) was not an actual witness who saw and heard events himself. This is contradicted by the evidence quoted above. ii) Ummah was not direct witness because Hadith negates it but Prophet (sallallahu alayhi wa aalihi was’sallam) was direct witness. Meaning spiritually saw heard everything just as the events of former nations and their Prophets transpired. And this is established by circumstantial evidence of Ahadith quoted in section, 3.2.

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