An Unexpected Visitor
The choosing of Muhammad to bring the Truth to the Arabs:
Sighing he sat down in the darkness of the cave waiting for the first glimmer of dawn’s early light wondering about the One True God spoken of by the Jews and the Christians. His heart stirred when as a child one of his male relatives recited from the Bible, “The Lord your God is One.” However, this particular morning his spirit was troubled as some of the teachings he had heard from the Christians and the Jews seemed contradictory. How can God have a son when their Scriptures taught there was only one God? The gods of the idol worshipers had sons and daughters, so surely this couldn’t be true. Some of the Christians taught that Jesus was God made human which would make Jesus a God. (“They blaspheme those who say: ‘Allah is Jesus, the son of Mary.’ But Christ said, ‘Children of Israel worship only Allah, my Lord and your Lord.’ Whoever joins other gods with Allah will not be allowed to enter the garden and his destination will be the Fire where he will receive no help.” (Al- Ma’idah 5:72)
His heart and soul sought understanding from Allah (God), the One True God, as he pleaded for a book to be provided for the Arabs in their own clear language so they might have better access to the Truth. He yearned to learn more, this man with good character such that when as a teenager he traveled with his Uncle, Abu Talib, a merchant who traded on various caravans even as far away as Syria, and had already formed an excellent reputation by the other merchants designation of him as El-Amin, the one you can trust.
The night was calm and peaceful and the sky was full of stars. His troubled heart and mind finally became stilled. Then there was a growing awareness of something moving towards him from the far dark horizon. He sensed a rising from the horizon that was not the sun, but was like the sun- only spiritual in nature. As his heart began pounding in anxiety and fear the Spirit stopped two bow lengths away from the entrance of the cave and commanded him forcefully to “read.” Every pain and frustration he had beginning in early childhood at not being allowed to study reading and writing entered into his heart. An orphan boy was used for the purpose of servanthood — to serve whichever relative who took him in which usually did not include learning other than the physical tasks assigned to him. However, the man sitting at the entrance to the cave was insightful, intuitive and intelligent. “Read!” the Archangel Gabriel ordered him again even more forcefully. Tears of frustration ran down Muhammad’s face as he again responded that he couldn’t read. He erroneously believed that he was being reprimanded by Allah for not learning to read. The Archangel Gabriel then enveloped him with love and compassion with such force that his chest hurt until he was able to understand that this was Allah’s great Mercy. He suddenly realized he was being told to recite and not read. With clarity he understood that he was to be Allah’s messenger to recite the words spoken to him in his Arabic language to bring knowledge of the One True God to the polytheistic tribes.
How could he have known that his cry to Allah for a book in their own Arabic language would come through him — an illiterate man? How could this possibly be? A Word sent from Allah to a man who couldn’t read? All praise be to Allah to bring the Word in the darkness of ignorance and to confirm what came before it as well as clarify the contradictions of some of the Jews and Christians misinterpretations of Scripture. The stream of Allah’s Truth now began running through a land of wilderness which once in darkness was soon to become a center of Light and Truth. The river of faith beginning with Abraham branching off from the Hebrew root through Ishmael to finally reach the Arabs. As the sun moves from the East to the West, as the Torah and the Gospel did, so did the Qur’an. Muhammad, moved and trembling, ran home to his wife, Khadija, to tell her and her Christian male relative what had happened which was confirmed by their joint belief that indeed Muhammad was visited by a Spirit of Allah and was chosen for a specific purpose — to bring the knowledge of the One True God to a land lost in idol worship, violence, and greed — alhamdullilah (all Praise be to God).