The Life of the Muhammad in Madinah: Treaties, Conquests and his Death (Islam 1.11)

1.11 The Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) in Madinah

In the year 6AH (628CE) the Prophet Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) saw in a dream that he was performing the `Umrah pilgrimage. His Companions were overjoyed at the news, since the dreams of the Prophet were considered as divine inspiration. One thousand and five hundred in total went out and headed to Makkah, unarmed except for sheathed swords as they had no intention of fighting. When the Quraish heard that Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) and his Companions were headed to Makkah for the `Umrah, they decided to resist the Muslims from the pilgrimage at all costs. On the journey the Muslims stopped at a place called Hudaibiyah. Water was very scarce and when the Companions informed the Prophet of their thirst, he was blessed with a miracle whereby water gushed forth from between his fingers, which quenched the thirst of all one thousand and five hundred Muslims. It was here that the treaty of Hudaibiyah was negotiated and agreed upon. It was here also that the “Pledge of Ridwaan” (Qur’aan 48:18) took place after they feared that Quraish may have harmed the Companion `Uthmaan Ibn `Affaan (may Allah be pleased with him) who was sent to Makkah to speak to Quraish about the peaceful intention of the Muslims to perform `Umrah. The Quraish, however were adamant that the Muslims were not to enter Makkah or perform `Umrah, and `Uthmaan returned to the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him). Then an emissary of Quraish, Suhail Ibn `Amr, was sent to negotiate with the Muslims and the Prophet agreed a treaty of peace. The terms were as follows:

  1. The Muslims shall return home this year and come back the following year and not stay in Makkah for more than 3 days.
  2. The Muslims cannot enter armed but with short swords only sheathed in scabbards.
  3. Conflict and war will be suspended for ten years during which time both sides are to live in peace and full security, and neither shall raise the sword against the other.
  4. If any one of the Quraish was to become Muslim and go over to Muhammad without permission of the guardians would be sent back to Makkah (except for women who were not returned) – and should any of the Prophet’s followers return to Quraish, they would not be sent back.
  5. Whoever wishes to enter into a treaty with Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) is allowed to do so, and whoever wishes to enter into a treaty with Quraish is allowed to do so.

Whilst negotiations were taking place, Suhail Ibn `Amr’s son, Abu Jundal (who was a Muslim) appeared after escaping Makkah – he was chained, and was staggering and falling due to fatigue. Quraish refused to let him go over to the Muslims, and the Messenger was forced to send him back due to the conditions of the treaty. It was a very difficult and tense time for the Muslims since they knew Makkah was for Allah and they should not be prevented from the House of Allah, and further Abu Jundal was a Muslim, so how difficult it was for them to see him taken away in chains.

This treaty lays down for the Muslims the permissibility of entering into agreements with the non-Muslims such as the Jews, the Christians and others. Here the Prophet entered into negotiations over Makkah, then negotiations over other places is more viable if it is in the interests of the Muslims and their well-being in terms of religion and security. Shaikh Ibn Bāz (may Allah’s mercy be upon him) issued a ‘fatwa’ in the early 1990’s permitting the Muslim rulers to enter into negotiations of peace with the “State of Israel” if it was in the interests of the Muslims and if it would safeguard Muslim lives.

Nevertheless, the Hudaybiyah treaty was a victory for the Muslims because it meant they were free to travel and call the people to Islaam without hindrance from Quraish – and it meant that Quraish now officially recognized the validity of Muhammad as the leader of Madinah and the Muslims. After this event thousands more entered into Islam. Within two years, the Quraish had broken the treaty of Hudaibiyah by attacking the Banu Khuza’ah tribe which was allied to the Muslims. This led to the conquest of Makkah. With more than 10,000 Companions, the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) entered into Makkah. The city simply surrendered without a fight. Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) entered Makkah and demolished the idols in and around the Ka`bah, returning it back for the worship of Allah alone. The people of Makkah readily accepted Islaam without being compelled (since there is no forceful conversion in Islam). They finally awoke to what was occurring around them and were guided by God into Islam.

In the last two years of his life, the Prophet continued to spread the message of Islaam until all of Arabia either entered into Islaam or at the least accepted his rule.

In the 9th year after the Hijrah he performed the full pilgrimage (Hajj). It was at this time the following verse was revealed:

“This day I have perfected your religion for you and completed my favour upon you and I am pleased with Islaam as your religion.” (Qur’aan 5:10)

After this, verses were revealed but no new regulations were legislated. The Prophet Muhammad died after an illness lasting nearly two weeks in June 632CE (12th Rabee’ al-Awwal 11AH) at the age of 63. He was buried in a simple grave in Madinah in the house of his wife Aa`ishah, as it is the tradition of the Prophets that they are buried wherever they die.

Muhammad was the last of all the Prophets: “Muhammad is not the father of any man among you, but he is the Messenger of Allaah and the seal of the Prophets.” (Qur’aan 33:40) The seal here refers to the fact that he is the final Prophet, just as a seal is placed at the end of a document to show that it is completed. Through Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him), Almighty God (Allah) revealed everything that human beings are required to know about their Lord, how to worship Him and how to lead righteous lives that will lead them to the eternal Paradise. The Prophet said: “Indeed there is no Prophet to come after me.” (Bukhaaree and Muslim) He further stated: “I have left behind me two things. Were you to hold on to them you would never go astray: The Book of Allaah and my Sunnah.” (An authentic Hadeeth)

In the Shahaadah, Muslims do not say that Muhammad was the Messenger, but that he is the Messenger. This is because the message he brought is perfectly preserved in the Qur’aan and the Sunnah, which is a guiding example followed by Muslims all over the world. Allaah said: “You have in the Messenger of Allaah a beautiful pattern of conduct for anyone whose hope is in Allaah and in the Final Day.” (Qur’aan 33:21)

Muslims love, honour and respect all the Prophets of God, from the first of them to the last. In Islamic belief it is forbidden to speak ill or poke fun at any of the Prophets. Muhammad was the best of them and last of them. Muslims believe that the Revelation sent to Muhammad is the only one that is perfectly preserved.

Summary:

  • You should now know how Islaam was spread outside of Madinah.
  • You should know about the importance of Hudaibiyah.
  • You should know that it is permissible to make peace treaties with non-Muslims, even if they are the staunchest of enemies who want the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) dead.
  • You should know the importance of Tawheed since the Prophet destroyed the idols.
  • You should know the importance of Muhammad as the last Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him).
  • You should know the verses and hadeeth used in this chapter.

Questions:

  1. Complete the dateline with these new dates.
  2. How did the treaty of Hudaibiyah in 628H help the Muslims?
  3. Why did the Muslim army march on Makkah in 630H?
  4. What does “Seal of the Prophets” mean?
  5. How was Muhammad (peace and blessings be upon him) similar and different to other Prophets.

NOTE:

I initially compiled these worksheets for my students at the Redstone Academy (aged between 13 and 16 years), Moseley Road, Birmingham, UK who are working towards their General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE). I felt that others who do not attend the school can also benefit from these topics since they are presented in simple bitesize chapters. I have relied upon GCSE text books and adapted them for my classes.

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