Saturday, 23 March 2019

Did Ghulam Ahmad Claim Prophesy (Part 11)

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
والصلاة والسلام على اشرف الانبياء والمرسلين
والعاقبة للمتقين
Having introduced the text of Eik Ghalati Ka Izala written by Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian with the purpose of clarifying and elucidating once and for all the reality of his controversial claim of prophesy, we now continue with a careful analysis of the this text in order to demonstrate that he in fact did not put forward a claim to nubuwwa or risala. He writes:
سو اگر یہ کہا جاۓ کہ آنحضرتص تو خاتم النبیین ہیں۔ پھر آپ کے بعد اور نبی کس طرح آسکتا ہے۔ اس کا جواب یہی ہے کہ بیشک اس طرح سے تو کوئی نبی نیا ہو یا پرانا نہیں آسکتا۔ جس طرح سے آپ لوگ حضرت عیسی علیہ السلام کو آخری زمانہ میں اتارتے ہیں اور پھر اس حالت میں انکو نبی بھی مانتے ہیں۔ بلکہ چالیس برس تک سلسلہ وحی نبوت کا جاری رہنا اور زمانہ آنحضرت صلی اللہ علیہ وسلم سے بھی بڑھ جانا آپ لوگوں کا عقیدہ ہے۔ بیشک ایسا عقیدہ تو معصیت ہے اور آیت ولکن رسول اللہ وخاتم النبیین اور حدیث لا نبی بعدی اس عقیدہ کے کذب صریح ہونے پر کامل شہادت ہے۔ لیکن ہم اس قسم کے عقائد کے سخت مخالف ہیں۔ اور ہم اس آیت پر سچّا اور کامل ایمان رکھتے ہیں جو فرمایا کہ ولکن رسول اللہ وخاتم النبیین
“Thus if someone were to ask how it is possible for another Prophet to come after the Holy Prophetsa who is Khaatamun Nabiyyin, the simple answer is that no Prophet–new or old–can come in the manner in which you people seek the descent of Jesusas in the latter days, while you also believe that he will be a Prophet and that he will continue to receive Prophetic revelation for forty years, and will thus surpass the period of the Holy Prophet’ssa Prophethood. Such a belief is undoubtedly sinful. The verse ‘But he is the Messenger of Allah and the Seal of the Prophets’ and the Hadith ‘There is no Prophet after me’ categorically testify that this belief is totally false. I myself am strongly averse to such beliefs and I resolutely believe in the verse ‘But he is the Messenger of Allah and the Seal of the Prophets’.” (Eik Ghalati Ka Izala p.3):

The irony is that Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian had an even stricter belief in the finality of prophesy than the clerical forces of orthodoxy which have wrongly accused him of denying this fundamental doctrine of Islam. The very basis for his denying the idea that Jesus of Nazareth shall come down in the capacity of an actual prophet and receive divine revelation from Heaven for a period of forty years–exceeding the period of Prophet Muhammad’s prophesy–was his resolute conviction in the finality of prophesy. Otherwise, the apparent meaning of certain Hadith does give credence to the idea that the coming Messiah shall literally be a Prophet of God and receive the revelation of prophesy:

ثُمَّ يَأْتِي عِيسَى ابْنَ مَرْيَمَ قَوْمٌ قَدْ عَصَمَهُمُ اللَّهُ مِنْهُ فَيَمْسَحُ عَنْ وُجُوهِهِمْ وَيُحَدِّثُهُمْ بِدَرَجَاتِهِمْ فِي الْجَنَّةِ فَبَيْنَمَا هُوَ كَذَلِكَ إِذْ أَوْحَى اللَّهُ إِلَى عِيسَى إِنِّي قَدْ أَخْرَجْتُ عِبَادًا لِي لاَ يَدَانِ لأَحَدٍ بِقِتَالِهِمْ فَحَرِّزْ عِبَادِي إِلَى الطُّورِ
“Then a people whom Allah had protected would come to Jesus, son of Mary, and he would wipe their faces and would inform them of their ranks in Paradise and it would be under such conditions that Allah would reveal to Jesus these words: ‘I have brought forth from amongst My servants such people against whom none would be able to fight; you take these people safely to Tur’.”
(Sahih Muslim)

This authentic Hadith gives two clear examples of the promised Messiah receiving the divine revelation of prophesy. Firstly, he shall inform a people of their ranks in Paradise. This is a matter of the unseen, and as the Qur’an states, Allah only reveals the unseen to a Messenger (Sura 72:26-27). Secondly, Allah shall reveal direct speech to the coming Messiah, informing him of the imminent approach of Gog and Magog and instructing him to take his people to the mountain for safety. And here the words اذ أوحى الله إلى عيسى leave no room for misunderstanding that he shall indeed receive prophetic revelation from Allah. Thus, orthodoxy must at the very least admit that the window of prophetic revelation is still open after the death of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). The same Hadith refers to the promised, expected Jesus as نبي الله four times.

فَيَمْكُثُ فِي الأَرْضِ أَرْبَعِينَ سَنَةً ثُمَّ يُتَوَفَّى فَيُصَلِّي عَلَيْهِ الْمُسْلِمُونَ
“He (Jesus) will stay on the Earth for forty years then die*. The Muslims will pray over him.”
(Sunan Abi Dawud)

*Incidentally, the Prophet (peace be upon him) used the word يتوفي to mean death.
The reader should not be under the impression that Ghulam Ahmad outright rejected the Hadith in Sahih Muslim where the promised Jesus is named ‘Prophet of Allah’ and shall receive prophetic revelations. Instead, he interpreted the Hadith as referring to the figurative prophesy.
In summary, Mirza Ghulam Ahmad did not make a fresh claim to prophesy in 1901 with the publication of Eik Ghalati Ka Izala. Instead, he reaffirmed his belief in the finality of prophesy and simply explained that he has been named ‘prophet’ in divine inspirations. Whether one accepts that Ghulam Ahmad was a recipient of inspiration is not the point. My intention is only to clarify that this individual did not make a claim to prophesy in the real and technical sense, such a claim undoubtedly constituting rejection of Islam and Khatm un-Nubuwwa.

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