Gradual and Phased Revealment on the Promised Messiah in regard to his Nabuwwat
When all the writings of the Promised Messiah are kept carefully in view, the fact emerges clearly that his position, in regard to his Nabuwwat and his grandeur, did not dawn upon him in one sudden and swift revealment; it grew on him in a gradual comprehension, stage by stage, phase by phase. Before 1901, passages and portions, in his literature, where he was called a Nabi and Rasul, a Prophet, and an Apostle, in Revelations and Ilhams received from Allah, he interpreted generally to mean that he was a Mohaddath, a partial Nabi, the bearer of an incomplete Prophethood. In other words, in view of the generally prevailing definition of Nabuwwat, in which conception the bringing of a new Sharia or not to be an Ummati of an earlier Prophet were fundamental, essential requirements, he denied that he was a Nabi in the term. Words Nabi and Rasul in Ilhams and Revelations, he received from God, he took to mean that he was a Mohaddath appointed to a divine mission. Since Mohaddathiyat and Nabuwwat deeply resemble one another, the word Nabi had been used in regard to him, to intensify the importance of his mission. In subsequent writings, i.e., after 1901, however, he abandoned this interpretation of Nabuwwat, in the light of Ilhams and Revelations which could not be vested with the old traditional sense of Nabuwwat and came to realise that he was a Prophet. But he always took care to qualify his claim by saying he was a Nabi, from one angle, and an Ummati from another. After 1901 he never wrote that he was a partial Nabi or mere Mohaddath.
Mr. Faruqi has quoted passages from the writings of the Promised Messiah, of the period earlier than 1901, of which the following from Izala-i-Auham (page 349) is one:
Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Sahib, the Mojaddid of the 14th century (Hijrah) has written at page 349 of his book Izala-i-Auham : "The Promised Messiah has been called a follower of the Prophet Mohammad, as the tradition of `your Imam from amongst you ' indicates while the tradition that the learned religious savants from amongst my followers would be like unto the prophets of Israelites, points to the resemblance which the Promised Messiah will have to Jesus Christ. Since the word Nabi (Prophet) according to the Arabic lexicon, means one who receives tidings from Allah and announces the same, the Promised Messiah, being possessed of this attribute, could figuratively be called a `prophet.'" (Truth Triumphs, pages 15-16)
The second quotation is from Izala-i-Auham, page 575
"Here some doubts assail the mind of the reader. When Jesus, son of Mary, at the time of his `coming', would be one of the followers of the Holy Prophet Mohammad, how could he be a full-fledged Prophet as well, especially as Hazrat Mohammad is the last and final prophet! Albeit one from the followers of the Holy Prophet, who received communications from God, because of his spiritual attainments, can be considered (figuratively speaking) as a prophet whose other name is Mohaddath . Such persons are excluded from this restriction; as through their utter devotion to the Holy Prophet, they form a part of his `personality' like a portion (of a thing) forms a part of the whole (thing). (Truth Triumphs, page 17-18)
The third quotation on page 26 of Truth Triumphs is from Ishtiharat, Part 1, page 97:
"I beg to inform my Muslim readers, that wherever in my books, Fath-i-Islam, Taudih-i-Maram, any such words are used that Mohaddath in one sense is a `prophet' also, or that the rank of `Muhaddath ' implies a `partial prophethood' or `incomplete prophethood', then please understand that these words have not been used in their real sense, but only lexically or in a figurative sense. For God forbid, I do not claim to be a real and full-fledged prophet: but I mean that what I have written on page 137 of my book Izala-i-Auham that it is my faith that our Holy Prophet Mohammad is the last of the Prophets. So I request my brethren that if my use of these terms is repugnant to them, and has shocked them, then they may consider these `terms' as if they have been amended by me and substitute the word `Mohaddath ' instead. For at no price will I cause disunity amongst the Muslims, since from the very beginning, as God is my witness, I intended from the use of the word `Nabi ' only Mohaddath and not a real prophet. For about Mohaddath our Holy Prophet has explained that it means `one with whom God speaks' as the following tradition of his, as related by Abu Hurairah, makes it clear, (the wording of the Report being) "Verily before your time, amongst the Israelites there were such persons with whom God spoke, although they were not prophets. So amongst my followers if there is one such person he is Umar".
Without doubt, it appears from these passages that from the commencement of his claim, to a certain date, the Promised Messiah interpreted the word Nabi and Rasul, wherever in Ilhams and Revelations they occurred in regard to himself, as Mohaddath, part Prophet, or an incomplete Prophet, or that the word Nabi was applied to him in a figurative sense only and this was due to the incomplete current definition of Nabuwwat. But in his subsequent works, it is clear as daylight that there came a time, in view of a powerful stream of his Ilhams and Revelations, he was led to realise that he was in fact a Nabi, given the title of Nabi in the explicit words of God which now he no longer tried to water down in explanation that the term was applied to him in the sense af a Mohaddath, or a part Prophet, or an incomplete Prophethood. It has to be borne in mind, however, that even during the final phase of his new comprehension, he never took himself to be a Prophet with a new Law, a new Sharia . He never claimed to be an independent Prophet, insisting always that he was only a zilli or buruzi Nabi being perfect zill or image of his Master Prophet by devotedly following his Sharia and thereby gaining the title of Nabi through strong spiritual power of his Master Khatam-un-Nabiyyin.
He realised that being an Ummati is no longer a hindrance in the path of being a perfect Nabi as he used to think it so in the past.