Thursday, July 4, 2013

[2-149] What were the Words that Ibrahim was tested with

What were the Words that Ibrahim was tested with

There is a difference of opinion over the words that Allah tested Ibrahim with. There are several opinions attributed to Ibn `Abbas. For instance, `Abdur-Razzaq said that Ibn `Abbas said, "Allah tested him with the rituals (of Hajj).'' Abu Ishaq reported the same. `Abdur-Razzaq also narrated that Ibn `Abbas said that,

[وَإِذِ ابْتَلَى إِبْرَهِيمَ رَبُّهُ بِكَلِمَـتٍ]

(And (remember) when the Lord of Ibrahim (Abraham) (i.e., Allah) tried him with (certain) commands) means, "Allah tested him with Taharah (purity, ablution): five on the head and five on the body. As for the head, they are cutting the mustache, rinsing the mouth, inhaling and discarding water, using Siwak and parting the hair. As for the body, they are trimming the nails, shaving the pubic hair, circumcision and plucking under the arm and washing with water after answering the call of nature.'' Ibn Abi Hatim said, "A similar statement was also reported from Sa`id bin Al-Musayyib, Mujahid, Ash-Sha`bi, An-Nakha`i, Abu Salih, Abu Al-Jald, and so forth.''

There is a similar statement that Imam Muslim narrated from `A'ishah who said that Allah's Messenger said,

«عَشْرٌ مِنَ الْفِطْرَةِ: قَصُّ الشَّارِبِ وَإِعْفَاءُ اللِّحْيَةِ وَالسِّوَاكُ وَاسْتِنْشَاقُ الْمَاءِ وَقَصُّ الْأَظْفَارِ وَغَسْلُ الْبَرَاجِمِ وَنَتْفُ الْإِبْطِ وَحَلْقُ الْعَانَةِ وَانْتِقَاصُ الْمَاءِ وَنَسِيتُ الْعَاشِرَةَ إِلَّا أَنْ تَكُونَ الْمَضْمَضَة»

(Ten are among the Fitrah (instinct, natural constitution): trimming the mustache, growing the beard, using Siwak, inhaling and then exhaling water (in ablution), cutting the nails, washing between the fingers (in ablution), plucking the underarm hair, shaving the pubic hair, washing with water after answering the call of nature, (and I forgot the tenth, I think it was) rinsing the mouth (in ablution).)

The Two Sahihs recorded Abu Hurayrah saying that the Prophet said,

«الْفِطْرَةُ خَمْسٌ: الْخِتَانُ وَالْاسْتِحْدَادُ وَقَصُّ الشَّارِبِ وَتَقْلِيمُ الْأَظْفَارِ وَنَتْفُ الْإِبْط»

(Five are among the acts of Fitrah: circumcision, shaving the pubic hair, trimming the mustache, cutting the nails and plucking the underarm hair.) This is the wording with Muslim.

Muhammad bin Ishaq reportd that Ibn `Abbas said, "The words that Allah tested Ibrahim with, and that he implemented were: abandoning his (disbelieving) people when Allah commanded him to do so, disputing with Nimrod (king of Babylon) about Allah, being patient when he was thrown in the fire (although this was extremely traumatic) migrating from his homeland when Allah commanded him to do so, patience with the monetary and material demands of hosting guests by Allah's command, and Allah's order for him to slaughter his son. When Allah tested Ibrahim with these words, and he was ready for the major test, Allah said to him,

[أَسْلِمْ قَالَ أَسْلَمْتُ لِرَبِّ الْعَـلَمِينَ]

("Submit (be a Muslim)!'' He said, "I have submitted myself (as a Muslim) to the Lord of all that exists. '') (2:131) although this meant defying and being apart from the people.''

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