Men of Excellence
After reciting the Tashahhud, Ta‘awwuz, and Surah Al-Fatihah, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih V(aba) continued his series of Sermons on the lives of the Badri companions of the Holy Prophet Muhammad(sa).
In today’s sermon, His Holiness(aba) narrated accounts in the life of Hazrat Mu`az bin Harithra who belonged to the Khazraj tribe of Banu Malik bin Najjar. His father’s name was Harith bin Rifa`a and his mother’s name was Afra’ bint `Ubaid. Hazrat Mu`awwiz(ra) and Hazrat `Auf(ra) were his brothers. Along with being recognized by their father’s name, all three brothers would also be recognized by their mother’s name, hence they were also known as Banu Afra’. All three brothers took part in the Battle of Badr. Hazat Mu`awwiz(ra) and Hazrat `Auf(ra) were martyred in this battle while Hazrat Mu`az would go on to take part in all subsequent battles alongside the Holy Prophet Muhammad(sa).
His Holiness(aba) mentioned that Hazrat Mu`az was one of the first Ansari companions to accept Islam in Mecca. He was of the 8 companions who took part in Bai`at-e-Aqabah Ula and also took part in Bai`at-e-Aqabah Thani.
His Holiness(aba) stated that although it has been mentioned before, it is important to recall the incident of Abu Jahl’s demise during the Battle of Badr in reference to Hazrat Mu’az. His Holiness(aba) read out the narration from Bukhari by Hazrat `Abdur Rahman bin `Auf(ra) detailing the incident in which two youngsters from the Ansar asked him to point out who Abu Jahl was, and as soon as he did, they both attacked him, causing him fatal injuries.
His Holiness(aba) also read the following narration by Hazrat Anas(ra):
‘The Prophet(sa) said, “Who will go and see what has happened to Abu Jahl?” Ibn Mas`ud went and found that the two sons of Afra’ had struck him fatally (and he was in his last breaths). `Abdullah bin Mas`ud said, “Are you Abu Jahl?” And took him by the beard. Abu Jahl said, “Can there be a man superior to one you have killed or one whom his own folk have killed?”’ (Bukhari Kitabul Maghazi)
His Holiness(aba) also clarified as to whether or not it was the two sons of Afra’ who attacked Abu Jahl or if there was only one. He presented various narrations wherein it has been mentioned that it was the two sons of Afra’ who attacked Abu Jahl, but also presented narrations wherein it is mentioned that Mu`az bin `Amr bin Jammu also attacked Abu Jahl. His Holiness(aba) mentioned that a narration of Hazrat Anas bin Malik(ra) would have to be deemed most accurate in which he says that there was one son Afra’ who attacked Abu Jahl, while Mu`az bin `Amr bin Jammu was mistaken to also be Mu`az bin Afra`. It could also have been that Mu`az bin `Amr bin Jammu was Mu`az bin Afra’’s brother in suckling. Hence Mu`az bin Afra’ and Mu`az bin `Amr bin Jammu were the two who attacked Abu Jahl.
With regards to the killing of Abu Jahl, His Holiness(aba) presented an excerpt from Hazrat Musleh Mau’ud(ra) in which he wrote that when Abu Jahl was born, scores of camels were slaughtered and drums were beat in merriment, yet his death was brought about by two youngsters, fifteen years of age. Even his last wish of being beheaded with his neck extended was not fulfilled, as `Abdullah bin Mas`ud(ra) beheaded him close to the chin.
Hazrat Mu`az bin Afra`(ra) had four wives and children from each. His Holiness(aba) presented varying accounts of his demise and commented that based on his marriages and his progeny it can be concluded that he lived a long life.
His Holiness(aba) then spoke about respected Rana Naeemuddin Sahib – a longstanding and sincere servant of the Jama`at – who passed away recently at the age of 86 years. ‘Surely to Allah do we belong and to Him shall we return.’
He was blessed with the opportunity of serving Hazrat Musleh Mau’ud(ra) as part of his security team and was part of the Amla Hifazat team here until his demise. When Hazrat Musleh Mau’ud(ra) travelled to Nakhla with regards to the writing of his exegesis on the Holy Qur’an (Tafsir-e-Kabir), respected Rana Sahib accompanied him and undertook the responsibility of the security arrangements.
He would later go on to become the caretaker of the Ahmadiyya mosque in Sahiwal. In 1984 he was on duty at the mosque when it was attacked. He retaliated in defense of the mosque and was apprehended by police as a result. Thus, he had the honor of being a prisoner in the way of Allah for about nine and a half years. During this time his case was referred to the military court, where he was sentenced to the death penalty, Later the decision was appealed at the High Court in Lahore where his release was ordered in 1994. After his release he moved to London where he served as part of the Amla Hifazat team.
While in prison, respected Rana sahib was subjected to grave brutalities and suffered many injuries, the effects of which he felt until his last days. His son Rana Waseem Sahib – a life-devotee serving in the Private Secretary Office – writes that one day as he was massaging his father’s legs, at one point he expressed some discomfort. Upon his son’s enquiry, he explained that he still felt pain from the injuries he had suffered in jail.
His Holiness(aba) read out various accounts of those who had written about respected Rana Sahib, all of whom unanimously attested to his love, utmost loyalty and obedience to Khilafat. They also mentioned his high level of patience which he exhibited throughout his life, especially during the time of his imprisonment. In fact, when he was told of his death sentence, even the jail warden expressed his astonishment upon the fact that his facial expressions did not change in the slightest. No matter the situation he was always steadfast and thanked Allah no matter the circumstances.
His Holiness(aba) mentioned the comments of a doctor, who upon seeing respected Rana Sahib’s file was astonished as to how he was able to still walk about and perform his duties. Even when he was ill he would insist on carrying out his duties. He would say that seeing the Khalifa would make him feel young again. He was a family-man, and took care of all his children with great love and affection. He treated his daughter-in-law with great love as if she were his own daughter.
His Holiness(aba) mentioned that he had known respected Rana Sahib since he was young and remembered him to always show kindness which increased manifold when he became Khalifa. His Holines(aba) also attested to respected Rana Sahib’s great love for Khilafat, saying that despite visiting the hospital many times, he would come for duty on the same day he would be discharged from hospital. Whenever His Holiness(aba) would inquire as to how he was feeling he would praise God Almighty and never complain. His Holiness(aba) prayed that may Allah treat respected Rana Sahib with the same love and affection in heaven.
His Holiness(aba) also mentioned with regards to the current state of the world, that some Ahmadis have fallen ill and asked the Jama’at to pray for their health. He prayed that may Allah enable us to tread the path of His pleasure, may we fulfill the rights of worship and our rights of service to humanity. May Allah the Almighty swiftly remove this illness and may the world turn to God and worship Him, recognizing the true Unity of God.
Summary prepared by The Review of Religions.