In The Name Of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Your friend Muhammad's schoolbag is at your house. Someone knocks at your door and tells you, "Muhammad sent me to get his bag."
If you don't know him, what would you do? Would you trust him immediately and give him the schoolbag? How could you be sure? How can you find out if he was truly sent by Muhammad? Wouldn't you need some special sign in order to be able to know for sure?
You might say, "Describe the schoolbag and I'll give it to you."
Then he might describe it saying, "Muhammad said it was in the living room and has a math book, a blue notebook, and a small yellow pencil inside."
If his description was correct you would know that he was truly sent and trusted by Muhammad. You may also trust him and give him the schoolbag.
With this example in mind, how shall we know the Prophet? Do we need any special signs?
The Prophet (S.A.W.), sent by Allah, brought special signs from Allah with which to introduce himself so that people might recognize him and accept his invitation to Islam.
If the Prophet hadn't brought any special signs how would the people know him? How could they know that he was truly a Prophet and Messenger of Allah? If Allah does not provide some special signs for His messengers, how will the people recognize them? How can they know that they have a special relationship with Allah? How can they trust them and follow them? How can they accept their invitations?
The special signs of the prophets are called miracles. A miracle is something which cannot be done by man, something which can only be done by Allah or His special messengers.
When someone says, "I am a messenger of Allah and I have a special relationship with Him." and performs a miracle, seekers of truth may know that he is truly a prophet and messenger from Allah, and is trustworthy and trusted by Allah. Seekers of truth may trust him, believe in what he says, accept his invitation and leadership since he performs miracles (works of Allah), he is truly a messenger and has a special relationship with Allah.
All of the prophets of Allah performed miracles. Prophet Moses (A.S.) reached into his shirt, and when he brought his hand out it shone like a star. His walking stick- by Allah's will-turned into a dangerous snake. That same walking stick upon Allah's command, parted the ocean waters so that the bottom of the ocean was visible and the people were able to cross.
Allah has described these signs and miracles in the Glorious Qur'an. Regarding Jesus (A.S.) it is written that he healed the blind, with Allah's permission, and raised up the dead to live and breathe again. He shaped a bird out of clay and by the will of Allah breathed life into it and it flew away. Prophet Jesus (A.S.) knew of the unknown. For example, he could tell what a person ate in the privacy of his home or what he had hidden there, and when he was a newborn baby, he spoke from the cradle.
The fire of Namrod, by the will of Allah, did not harm prophet Abraham (A.S.).
Our exalted prophets performed many miracles. The greatest of which was the Glorious Qur'an. In the next chapter we will learn more about the miracles of the great prophets.
Now let us discuss:
Allah, with His ultimate power, can do whatever He wishes. Who, but Allah the Almighty can turn a stick of wood into a snake? Who, but Allah, could part the seas with ease, give sight to the blind, breathe life into a piece of clay creating beak, feather eye and ear? Who, but Allah has knowledge of the unknown?
True prophets through the power of Allah perform such works of wonder so that the righteous shall know of their special relationship with Allah, and that they are trustworthy and chosen by Allah to bring forth His message.
These works are called miracles. Miracles are happenings which no one but Allah and His special messengers can perform. When Allah sends a prophet, He gives him the power to perform a miracle as a sign by which he may be known. If the prophets of Allah did not perform miracles as divine signs how would people know that they were prophets? How would they know that they were truly the messengers of Allah?
1. Do we need a special sign to recognize a prophet? Why?
2. What are the signs of the prophets called?
3. Who granted the prophets this power?
4. Cite three examples of the miracles of Allah's messengers.
5. By witnessing miracles how shall the righteous know that he who performs them is truly a prophet sent by Allah?