بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
In the third part of this series on the fateful and destructive end of the Prophet Muhammad’s ﷺ most implacable enemies, I will now discuss the story of the Sasanian Iranian emperor, Chosroes II, known by his title ‘Parvez’. The Prophet ﷺ sent an epistle to him, inviting him to Islam and to accept him as God’s Prophet, otherwise the misdeeds of the Magians would be upon him for refusing. However, Chosroes arrogantly tore up the letter, saying “He writes this to me while he is my subject!” When the Prophet was informed about how Chosroes has torn his letter in two, the Prophet ﷺ predicted “Likewise, his kingdom shall be torn up”.
Chosroes was so incensed by this letter, that he in fact sent instructions to his viceroy in Yemen, Bādhān, to have the Prophet ﷺ arrested and brought to him in Iran. Two envoys were then sent to find the Prophet ﷺ in Medina and inform him that he had to return with them, otherwise “he will destroy you, destroy your people, and lay waste to your lands”. When the Prophet ﷺ saw these two Iranian envoys, he was disgusted by their custom of shaving their beards while keeping unnecessarily large mustaches and so refused to look at them while speaking to them. The Prophet told them to return to him tomorrow when he would inform them of his decision. That night the Prophet received a revelation from Allah, so when the two envoys returned to him the next day, he said:
أَنَّ رَبِّي قَدْ قَتَلَ رَبَّهُ كِسْرَى فِي هَذِهِ اللَّيْلَةِ
“Tonight my Lord has killed your lord”
Dumbfounded, the two envoys returned to Yemen and informed Bādhān about their encounter with the Prophet Muhammad ﷺ.
Meanwhile, the same night the Prophet had received his revelation, Chosroes son, Shīrūya, known as Kavadh II, had murdered his father and seized the throne for himself. The new emperor immediately sent a letter to Bādhān informing him about the state of affairs and nullifying his father’s orders to arrest the Prophet ﷺ. Bādhān was then compelled to accept Islam, saying “Surely this man [Muhammad] is a Prophet”. (Tarikh al-Tabari)