Friday, 29 January 2021

Had Ibrahim Lived He Would Have Been a Prophet

 بِسۡمِ اللّٰہِ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِیۡمِ

يَا ‌إِلَهَ ‌الْآلِهَةِ

The last son to be born to the beloved Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم was sayyidina Ibrahim عليه السلام who died in infancy. It is reported that upon his death the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم said:

لَوْ عَاشَ لَكَانَ صِدِّيقًا نَبِيًّا

Had he lived he would have been a truthful prophet”

(Sunan Ibn Majah)

However, this particular narration is weak due to the narrator Ibrahim b. Uthman al-’Absi who is matrūk al-hadīth ‘abandoned in Hadith’.

But Ibn Abi Awfa رضى الله عنه who saw the Prophet’s son Ibrahim عليهما السلام said about him:

وَلَوْ قُضِيَ أَنْ يَكُونَ بَعْدَ مُحَمَّدٍ صلى الله عليه وسلم نَبِيٌّ عَاشَ ابْنُهُ، وَلَكِنْ لاَ نَبِيَّ بَعْدَهُ

Had it been decreed that there be after Muhammad صلى الله عليه وسلم a prophet, his son would have lived, but there is no prophet after him” (Sahih al-Bukhari)

This is also the view of sayyidina Anas bin Malik رضى الله عنه who said:

لَوْ عَاشَ إِبْرَاهِيمُ ابْنُ النَّبِيِّ صَلَّى اللهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ، ‌لَكَانَ ‌صِدِّيقًا ‌نَبِيًّا

Had Ibrahim son of the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم lived he would have been a siddīq, a prophet” (Musnad Ahmad)

Both Shuaib Arnaut and Hamza Ahmad al-Zayn have declared this narration hasan (sound) in their checking of the Musnad:

Ibn Asakir brings out another narration in which it is reported that the Prophet صلى الله عليه وسلم placed his blessed hand in the grave of his son Ibrahim عليه السلام and said:

أَمَا وَاللَّهِ إِنَّهُ لِنَبِيٌّ ابْنُ نَبِيٍّ

by Allah, he is a prophet, son of a Prophet”

(Tarikh Dimashq v.4 p.615):

However, Ibn Asakir has mentioned that one of the narrators, a certain Isa who is actually a direct descendant of Amir al-Mu’minin, Ali bin Abi Talib كرم الله وجهه namely, Ibn Abd Allah b. Muhammad b. Umar b. Ali b. Abi Talib, is ليس بالقوى not strong’ a mild criticism to be sure.

I earlier quoted the explanation of Mulla Ali al-Qari رحمه الله of the narrations ‘had Ibrahim lived he would have been a prophet’ and ‘if there was a prophet after me it would be Umar’ in which he says that they would have been prophets while remaining under the obedience to the Prophet Muhammad صلى الله عليه وآله وسلم

And if we accept the narration “by Allah he [Ibrahim] is a prophet, son of a Prophet” then we believe he was an Ummati prophet. He had the potential of receiving revelation from Allah and prophesying while still being subject to the Shari’ah of his blessed father صلى الله عليهما وسلم

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