بِسۡمِ اللّٰہِ الرَّحۡمٰنِ الرَّحِیۡمِِ

Al Islam

The Official Website of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community
Muslims who believe in the Messiah,
Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian(as)Muslims who believe in the Messiah, Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad Qadiani (as), Love for All, Hatred for None.

Hazrat Muaz bin Jabal(ra)

A Badri Companion of the Holy Prophet(sa)

(Friday Sermon - October 30, 2020 )

Generosity of Hazrat Mu‘az(ra)

Hazrat Muaz(ra) was extremely charitable and used to generously spend on others. Owing to this he often had to take loans as well. When the people who had loaned him money pressured him to return the money, he hid in his home for a few days. Upon this, these individuals went to the Holy Prophet(sa) and requested him to ask Hazrat Muaz(ra) to pay back the loan. The Holy Prophet(sa) sent an individual to Hazrat Muaz(ra) and called for him. When the debt of Hazrat Muaz(ra) surpassed the value of his belongings, the Holy Prophet(sa) said that God would have mercy on the person who did not seek the repayment of the loan. Accordingly, some of them forgave his debt. However, some individuals still demanded for it to be paid back. Upon this, the Holy Prophet(sa) distributed his entire belongings among those individuals, but still there was some debt outstanding. The manner in which this debt was repaid was that each lender received a small portion of their money, but they demanded for the remaining amount to be paid back as well. Upon this, the Holy Prophet(sa) said to leave the matter for the time being as there was nothing more to give, therefore they ought to take that amount.

When Hazrat Muaz(ra) was left with nothing, the Holy Prophet(sa) sent him to Yemen and said that Allah will soon compensate his loss and enable him to pay off his debt. (Sheikh Shah Moinuddin Ahmad Nadvi, Siyar al-Sahabah, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Karachi, Pakistan: Dar al-Isha‘ah, 2004], 502) (Ali Ibn al-Athir, Usd al-Ghabah fi Ma‘rifat al-Sahabah, Vol. 5, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, 2003], 188) (Ibn Saad, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal… [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, 1990], 441)

On this occasion, the Holy Prophet(sa) also said to Hazrat Muaz(ra), “O Muaz! You have a lot of debt. Therefore, if you are presented with a gift, you may accept it. I permit you to do so.” (Siyar al-Sahabah, Vol. 5, p. 146, Dar al-Isha‘ah, Lahore)

The Holy Prophet(sa) said that he was permitted to accept gifts – under normal circumstances, there is nothing wrong in accepting gifts and it is said that giving each other gifts increases the love between people, and so one ought to give gifts. However, since Hazrat Muaz(ra) was sent as a representative of the Holy Prophet(sa), he specifically instructed him that if he was presented with any gifts in his capacity as a representative, then he was permitted to spend it on himself. The reason for this [special permission] was that these gifts were generally given for the treasury [Bait al-Maal], or for the Holy Prophet(sa).

Hazrat Muaz(ra) Sent to Yemen

Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal relates that when the Holy Prophet(sa) sent him to Yemen, the Holy Prophet(sa) walked outside with him in order to impart some advice. Hazrat Muaz(ra) was seated on his mount and the Holy Prophet(sa) walked alongside him. When the Holy Prophet(sa) completed what he had to say, he added, “O Muaz! It is possible that we may not meet in the coming year and it is also possible that you pass by my mosque and my grave.” Hearing this, Hazrat Muaz(ra) started to weep profusely because he was parting from the Holy Prophet(sa). Following this, the Holy Prophet(sa) turned his blessed face towards Medina and said, “The righteous from among my people are near and dear to me, whoever they may be and wherever they may be.” (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Muaz(ra) bin Jabal, Vol. 7, p. 359, Hadith 22402, Alam ul-Kutub, Beirut, 1998)

It is stated in one narration that on this occasion, the Holy Prophet(sa) said to Hazrat Muaz(ra), “Soon you shall go to those who are Ahl-e-Kitab [people of the book]. When you reach them, invite them to bear witness that there in none worthy of worship except Allah and that Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah. If they accept this, then inform them that Allah has prescribed for them the five daily prayers. If they accept this, then inform them that Allah has prescribed for them the giving of alms, which should be taken from their wealthy and given to their poor. If they accept this as well, then beware; do not take alms from their most valuable possessions, rather adopt the middle course with regard to taking from their wealth. And beware of the curse of the oppressed, for there is no barrier between them and Allah.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Kitab al-Maghazi, Bab Ba‘th Abi Musa wa Muazra ila Yaman…, Hadith 347)

The Holy Prophet(sa) specifically advised him to be cautious lest he became the object of the prayers of those who are oppressed as there is no barrier between their pleas and Allah.

The Holy Prophet(sa) sent Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal to Yemen as a qazi. Hazrat Muaz(ra) would teach [the people of Yemen] the Holy Quran and matters of faith and would also settle their disputes. Those who collected Zakat in Yemen would send whatever they had collected to Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal. The Holy Prophet(sa) had entrusted five companions to oversee matters in Yemen; Hazrat Khalid(ra) bin Saeed, Hazrat Muhajir(ra) bin Umayyah, Hazrat Zaid(ra) bin Labid, Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal and Hazrat Abu Musa Ash‘ari(ra). (Ibn Abd al-Barr, Al-Isti‘ab fi Ma‘rifat al-Ashab, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Jil, 1992], 460)

According to this narration, the administering of matters in Yemen was entrusted to these five companions.

Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal relates that when the Holy Prophet(sa) sent him to Yemen, he instructed, ‘For every 30 cows, take a one-year-old calf as Zakat and for every 40 cows, take a two-year-old cow (the Holy Prophet(sa) was stipulating the prescribed rate of Zakat and the threshold on which Zakat becomes obligatory) and from every person who has reached the age of maturity, take one dinar or the equivalent in m‘afirah,’ which was the name of a Yemeni cloth. In fact, m‘afirah was the name of a tribe which made this cloth and thus the cloth was named after them. This narration is from Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal. (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Muaz(ra) bin Jabal, Vol. 7, p. 348, Hadith 22363, Alam ul-Kutub, Beirut, 1998) (Lughaat-ul-Hadith, Vol. 3, p. 142, Pir Muhammad Kutub Khana Aram Bagh, Karachi)

Allamah ibn Saad states that Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal had a slight limp. When he went to Yemen, he led the people in prayer and whilst doing so, he extended his leg – meaning he must have placed it before him or extended it to the right or to whichever side his foot was impaired – and [those following him in prayer] also extended their legs in the same manner. When he had finished leading the prayer, Hazrat Muaz(ra) said, “You have done well to follow exactly as I have done; however, you must abstain from doing so in the future. I am compelled to extend my leg owing to my condition.” (Ibn Saad, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal… [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, 1990], 439)

What he meant was that the obedience which they had shown by doing exactly what he did was indeed praiseworthy. This in fact was true obedience, as whatever the imam does should be followed precisely. However, he was compelled to act in this way [i.e. to extend his leg] and this was not the practice of the Holy Prophet(sa). Whoever is not compelled [by an ailment or injury] should offer their prayers according to the commandments, teachings and practice adopted by the Holy Prophet(sa).

Hazrat Muaz(ra) conducted business in Yemen using money from the bait-ul-mal [treasury] and repaid his debts with the profits he made. He was the first person to conduct business with the wealth given in the way of Allah Almighty and this was done with the permission from the Holy Prophet(sa). He also accepted gifts as a result of which he eventually had 30 livestock animals. (Sheikh Shah Moinuddin Ahmad Nadvi, Siyar al-Sahabah, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Karachi, Pakistan: Dar al-Isha‘ah, 2004], 505) (Ibn Abd al-Barr, Al-Isti‘ab fi Ma‘rifat al-Ashab, Vol. 3,  Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Jil, 1992], 1404)

Thus, he used this wealth according to the permission granted by the Holy Prophet(sa), which most certainly was for the purpose of repaying his debts. He conducted business only to the extent of using the profits to repay his debts. Or if he did not use the profits for this purpose, it is also possible he would retain it as remuneration for his work [for the bait-ul-mal]. The Holy Prophet(sa) had given him permission for this, which is why he took it and used it to repay his debts. This fact seems the most accurate in that he would take a certain amount from the profits made as remuneration. Nevertheless, his actions were in line with the permission granted by the Holy Prophet(sa).

After the demise of the Holy Prophet(sa), when Hazrat Muaz(ra) went to perform Hajj, he met Hazrat Umar(ra), who had been appointed by Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra) to oversee matters pertaining to the Hajj. Hazrat Umar(ra) and Hazrat Muaz(ra) met on the day of tarwiyyah. They embraced each other and expressed their condolences to one another for the demise of the Holy Prophet(sa). Then they both sat on the ground and began conversing. (Ibn Saad, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal… [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, 1990], 441)

It is written in Al Isti‘ab, a book of history, that Hazrat Muaz(ra) was very generous and it was due to this generosity and benevolence that he fell into debt. He went to the Holy Prophet(sa) and requested him to ask those whom he owed to forgive his debt. This is the same incident mentioned earlier but from another source. The Holy Prophet(sa) made this request to those who he owed money to, but they refused to forgive the debt. Had they agreed to forgive the debts of Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal for anyone’s sake, it would have been for the sake of the Holy Prophet(sa), as his rank and status was the greatest. Thus, it could only have been for his sake that one would forgive the debts owed to them or would present financial sacrifices. However, as mentioned earlier, some people refused and said, “O Messenger(sa) of Allah, we will take the debt owed to us.” Then, in order to repay these debts, the Holy Prophet(sa) sold off the properties of Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal and he was left with no wealth or possessions.

In the same year as the Conquest of Mecca, the Holy Prophet(sa) sent Hazrat Muaz(ra) as a governor [amir] in one part of Yemen. Here it becomes clear that he was sent in the capacity of a governor; thus, any gifts he received in this capacity would have been considered as part of the treasury. He was the first person to conduct business from the treasury using the wealth given in the way of Allah. He remained in Yemen until the Holy Prophet’s(sa) demise, by which time he had become affluent. During this period, his business became profitable and whatever portion he would take led him to become well-off.

Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra) and Hazrat Umar(ra) honour the Holy Prophets(sa) Decision in regards to Muaz

Later, when he returned [to Medina], Hazrat Umar(ra) said to Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra), “He (i.e. Hazrat Muaz(ra)) should be summoned and aside from the necessities he requires, the rest of his wealth should be taken off him. The Holy Prophet(sa) only granted him permission for the sake of repaying his debts and now his debts have been repaid. He should keep the basic necessities he requires; however, he should not have accumulated wealth.”

This was the viewpoint of Hazrat Umar(ra) that he ought to keep what is required and return the rest of the wealth.  The matter was then presented before Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra). The degree of love which Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra) had for the Holy Prophet(sa) did not allow him to bear that he should make a decision contrary to something for which the Holy Prophet(sa) had granted permission. Thus, Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra) said, “The Holy Prophet(sa) sent him and I shall not take anything back from him”; he sent him off, saying that he had permission to conduct business and use the profit from it, “unless he wishes to return it to me himself, as I will not take anything from him. He went upon the instructions of the Holy Prophet(sa) and accepted gifts and other things with his permission. Unless he offers it to me himself, I shall not ask him to.”

Hazrat Umar(ra) then went to Hazrat Muaz(ra). Hazrat Umar(ra) was very resolute when it came to certain matters of principle, so he went to Hazrat Muaz(ra) and mentioned this all to him. Hazrat Muaz(ra) replied, “The Holy Prophet(sa) sent me so that I may fulfil my requirements, so I shall not give anything of it.” It is also established through the various accounts and the biographies of his life that if Hazrat Muaz(ra) ever did pass through times of prosperity, they would only last for a few days, as he would regularly distribute his wealth among the people. We shall see in the accounts later on just how he would distribute it.

Hazrat Muaz(ra) thereafter went to Hazrat Umar(ra) and said, “I accept what you said.” Previously, he said to Hazrat Umar(ra) that he would not give anything, but after some time, he went to Hazrat Umar(ra) and said he accepted and consented to what he had asked and would act according to what he said. This must have been after some time because there is a mention of a dream.

Hazrat Muaz(ra) stated, “I saw in the dream that I am drowning in water and you [i.e. Hazrat Umar(ra)] rescued me.” Hazrat Muaz(ra) then went to Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra), related everything to him and vowed, “I shall not hide a single thing from you.” Meaning from where and how he received the money. Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra) said, “I shall not take a thing from you. Yes, you have related all of this to me and accounted for everything, but I shall take nothing from you and I have given it all to you as a gift.” Hazrat Umar(ra), who was also present, said, “This is the best solution.” (Ibn Abd al-Barr, Al-Isti‘ab fi Ma‘rifat al-Ashab, Vol. 3, Bab Harf al-Meem,  Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Jil, 1992], 461)

When he came to know of this that now the Khalifa of the time had made a decision even after Hazrat Muaz(ra) had offered all the money, Hazrat Umar(ra) accepted the decision with complete obedience. It did not matter to him as to why it was being taken; all that mattered was that after the demise of the Holy Prophet(sa), the decision should rest with the Khalifa of the time as to whether or not he could keep the wealth and spend out of it.

Prior to this, Hazrat Umar(ra) was insisting that the wealth should be taken from Hazrat Muaz(ra), but when Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra) made his decision that he would not take it from him and that he would give it all back to him as a gift, Hazrat Umar(ra) did not insist on the matter and stated, “Indeed, this is the best solution in relation to this matter.”

Here, there is further clarification that God Almighty did not draw Hazrat Muaz’s(ra) attention to this matter until his needs had been fulfilled. Furthermore, after the demise of the Holy Prophet(sa) and when Hazrat Muaz’s(ra) needs were also fulfilled, he was granted prosperity and his debts were paid off, only then did God Almighty draw Hazrat Muaz’s attention to this matter through a dream in which he was told that he should now suffice on his own property. In other words, he should no longer accept gifts in the capacity of being the governor, nor spend out of the treasury. He did not remain there for long after this, but in any case, this was a brief explanation.

Advices of the Holy Prophet(sa) to Muaz

Hazrat Muaz(ra) relates that when the Holy Prophet(sa) sent him towards Yemen, he asked, “How will you deal with a matter when it is brought before you?” He answered, “I shall decide in accordance with the Book of Allah.” The Holy Prophet(sa) then asked, “And if you do not find the command in the Book of Allah?” to which Hazrat Muaz(ra) replied, “I shall decide in accordance with the practice [sunnah] of Allah’s Messenger(sa).” The Holy Prophet(sa) then asked, “And if you do not find the instruction in the sunnah of the Messenger of Allah?” Hazrat Muaz(ra) answered, “I shall form my opinion according to my reasoning and shall not show any carelessness in this regard.” Hazrat Muaz(ra) states that when the Holy Prophet(sa) had listened to these three things, he placed his hand upon his chest and said, “All praise belongs to Allah, who has enabled the ambassador of the Messenger(sa) of Allah to become a source of joy for him.” (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Muaz(ra) bin Jabal, Vol. 7, p. 347, Hadith 22357, Alam ul-Kutub, Beirut, 1998)

Hazrat Muaz(ra) narrates that when the Holy Prophet(sa) sent him to Yemen he instructed him not to adopt a life of comfort and ease, because the servants of Allah do not live a life of worldly comforts. (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Muaz(ra) bin Jabal, Vol. 7, p. 375, Hadith 22456, Alam ul-Kutub, Beirut, 1998)

This further clarifies that the Holy Prophet(sa) was aware that Hazrat Muaz(ra) was very generous and that he would spend the wealth from gifts and trade to help those in need. Even so, after giving permission for this, the Holy Prophet(sa) advised him not to live a life of comfort; instead, it was merely to fulfil his [basic] needs. So he admonished him to refrain from this.

Hazrat Muaz(ra) relates, “When I placed my foot in the stirrup as I was about to depart to Yemen, the Holy Prophet(sa) gave me a final piece of advice, saying, ‘Meet people in a courteous manner, meet the people in a courteous manner.’” (Ibn Saad, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal… [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, 1990], 439)

When the Holy Prophet(sa) sent Hazrat Muaz(ra) as the governor of Yemen, he described his status in the following words:

اِنِّیْ بَعَثْتُ لَکُمْ خَیْرَ اَھْلِیْ

meaning, “Surely I send to you the best of my people.” (Sheikh Shah Moinuddin Ahmad Nadvi, Siyar al-Sahabah, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Karachi, Pakistan: Dar al-Isha‘ah, 2004], 502)

Ibn Abi Naji’ narrates that the Holy Prophet(sa) appointed Hazrat Muaz(ra) as the governor of Yemen, stating to the people of Yemen, “Indeed I have sent to you a governor who is the most knowledgeable of my people and the most well-versed in the matters of faith.” (Ibn Sa’d, Al-Tabaqat al-Kubra, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal… [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, 1990], 438-439)

In a Hadith of Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, it is mentioned that Hazrat Muaz(ra) related, “The Holy Prophet(sa) gave me 10 instructions, saying, ‘The first is to not associate any partners with Allah, even if you are killed or thrown into the fire. Secondly, to not disobey one’s parents, even if they deprive you of your share in the inheritance.’” One should not disobey their parents, no matter what happens, even if one received nothing from them. “‘The third advice is to not miss any obligatory prayer knowingly, for one who abandons an obligatory prayer on purpose deprives himself from the support and protection of God Almighty.’ The Holy Prophet(sa) then said, ‘Never consume alcohol, for this is the root of every indecency.’ He then stated, ‘Abstain from sin and disobedience, because sin draws the displeasure of God Almighty.’ He then said, ‘When facing the enemy in battle, you must not flee. If you are confronted by the enemy, then you should not run away out of fear, even if the people are killed.’ He then stated, ‘If the people are afflicted with an epidemic such as the plague, they should remain wherever they are.’”

If they reside in an area where there is an outbreak of the plague, then the Holy Prophet(sa) has instructed that one should remain where they are.

“The Holy Prophet(sa) further stated, ‘Spend on your family according to your means, fulfil their rights and do not show any negligence in their moral training, (even if one has to show a little strictness in their moral training then one should do so to ensure for a good upbringing), instil the fear of God in them.’”

These were the ten things the Holy Prophet(sa) advised him about. (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Muaz(ra) bin Jabal, Vol. 7, p. 366, Hadith 22425, Alam ul-Kutub, Beirut, 1998)

Hazrat Ibn Umar(ra) narrates that the Holy Prophet(sa) said to Hazrat Muaz(ra), “I shall grant you advice like a kind-hearted brother. I advise you to instil the fear of Allah in you, visit the sick, fulfil the needs of the widows and the elderly, comfort those who are in need, dispense justice, speak the truth and never allow your fear of being rebuked stop you in matters relating to God. This is the advice I give to you.” (Kanz al-Ummal, Vol. 15, Hadith 43555, Kitab al-Mawa‘idh…, Chapter 10, Mu‘assisah al-Risalah, Beirut, 1985)

Status of Hazrat Muaz(ra)

On one occasion, Hazrat Umar(ra) asked his companions to express their desire for something. One of them replied, “I wish this house be filled with gold, so I may spend it in the way of Allah as sadaqah.” Another stated, “I wish this house be filled with pearls and rubies, so I may spend it in the way of Allah as sadaqah.” How lofty were the aspirations of the companions(ra)! Hazrat Umar(ra) then asked them to further express what they desired. They submitted, “O Leader of the Faithful, we do not understand as to what it is that we should desire?” Hazrat Umar(ra) stated, “I wish that this house be filled with people like Hazrat Abu Ubaidah(ra) bin Jarah, Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal, Salim(ra), the freed slave of Abu Huzayfa(ra) and Hazrat Huzayfa(ra) bin Yaman.” (Al-Mustadrak Ala al-Sahihain, Vol. 3, p. 252, Hadith 5005, Kitab Marifat al-Sahabah, Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2002). I have mentioned this narration previously as well and this time it has been narrated with reference to Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal.

Hazrat Muaz(ra) lived in Yemen for two years, from 9 AH to 11 AH. (Sheikh Shah Moinuddin Ahmad Nadvi, Siyar al-Sahabah, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Karachi, Pakistan: Dar al-Isha‘ah, 2004], 505)

Selflessness of Hazrat Muaz(ra)

On one occasion, Hazrat Umar(ra) bin Khattab placed 400 dinars in a money pouch and told one of his emissaries to take it to Hazrat Abu Ubaidah(ra) bin Jarrah and remain there for a while and to take note of what he did with it. This account was mentioned in a previous sermon with reference to Hazrat Abu Ubaidah(ra) bin Jarrah, but I did not mention the entire account; however, I shall narrate the full account now. And so, the emissary went to Hazrat Abu Ubaidah(ra) bin Jarrah(ra) with the small pouch of money and said, “The Leader of the Faithful has given this to you and said you may use it to fulfil any need you may have with it.” Hazrat Abu Ubaidah(ra) replied, “May Allah bestow His mercy upon him.” He then called one of his maidservants and told her to give 7 dinars to such and such person, five to such and such, five to such and such and in this way, he distributed the entire amount.” In other words, he called his maidservant and asked her to distribute all the wealth to the various houses, who perhaps were in need of it. The emissary returned to Hazrat Umar(ra) and related the entire incident.

Hazrat Umar(ra) had prepared another pouch for Hazrat Muaz(ra) which contained the same amount of money that was sent to Hazrat Abu Ubaidah(ra). Hazrat Umar(ra) told the emissary to give the pouch to Hazrat Muaz(ra) and again instructed him to remain in his house for a while and observe what he did with it. And so, the emissary took the pouch and went to Hazrat Muaz(ra) and said, “The Leader of the Faithful(ra) has said that you may use this to fulfil whatever needs you may have.” Hazrat Muaz(ra) replied, “May Allah bestow His mercy upon him.” Hazrat Muaz(ra) then called his maidservant and told her to give a certain amount to such and such house and a certain amount to such and such house. Whilst Hazrat Muaz(ra) was distributing the wealth, his wife entered and said, “By God, we are also in need of it for there is nothing in the house. Please keep something for us as well.” (This narration further clarifies the earlier narration regarding making a profit and receiving gifts.) His wife stated that they had nothing at home and thus, they too were in need of it. By then, all the money had been distributed and only two dinars remained in the pouch which Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal handed over to his wife. The emissary returned to Hazrat Umar(ra) and related the entire incident. Hazrat Umar(ra) was extremely pleased by this and stated, “Indeed, Hazrat Ubaidah(ra) and Hazrat Muaz(ra) are like two brothers.” (Majma al-Zawa‘id wa Manba al-Fawa‘id, Kitab al-Zakah, Bab fi al-Infaq, Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, Beirut, 2001)

In other words, this attribute of spending [on others] was shared by both.

Is it narrated by Shuraih bin Ubaid, Rashid bin Saad, etc. that when Hazrat Umar(ra) reached Saragh, which is the name of a settlement situated near the valley of Tabuk, he was informed that there was a very severe outbreak of a plague in Syria. Subsequently, Hazrat Umar(ra) announced, “I have been informed that there is a very severe outbreak of the plague in Syria. Thus, if I am about to die and Abu Ubaidah(ra) is alive then I shall appoint him as the Khalifa. And if Allah the Almighty asks me as to why I appointed him as the Khalifah of the Muslim Ummah, I will submit that I heard His Messenger(sa) say that every prophet is granted a custodian [for his Ummah] and the custodian [of his Ummah] is Abu Ubaidah bin Jarrah.” This narration has been previously mentioned as well. However, people expressed their concern over this and enquired as to what would happen to the prominent members of the Quraish, i.e. the Banu Fehr. Hazrat Umar(ra) then stated, “If my demise is imminent and Abu Ubaidah bin Jarrah has also passed away, then I shall appoint Muaz(ra) bin Jabal as the Khalifa. If my Lord, the Glorious and Exalted were to ask me as to why I appointed him, I will submit that I heard His messenger(sa) say that on the Day of Judgment, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal will walk ahead of the scholars of faith.” (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad al-Khulafa al-Rashidin, Musnad Umar al-Khattab, Vol. 1, p. 109, Hadith 108, Alam al-Kutub, Beirut, 1998) (Yaqut Ibn Abd Allah al-Hamawi, Mu‘jam al-Buldan, Vol. 3 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar Ihya al-Turath al-Arabi], 239)

This was the lofty status Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal occupied in regard to his knowledge.

In the Battle of Yarmuk in 15 AH, Hazrat Abu Ubaidah(ra) and Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal were appointed commanders on the right flank of the army. The Christians attacked with such intensity that the right flank of the army broke away from the rest of the army and consequently the soldiers became dispersed. Upon witnessing these circumstances, Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal displayed great courage and remained resolute. He stepped down from his horse and said that he would now fight on foot and if there was anyone who could do justice by fighting on a horse, then his horse was at their service. Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal’s son was also present in the battlefield and he said, “I shall do justice to it because I can fight better on horse” And so, both father and son, penetrated into the Byzantine forces and fought so valiantly that the Muslims who had initially lost their footing were now able to regroup and thus by defeating the enemy, their state of fear was transformed into victory for the Muslims. (Sheikh Shah Moinuddin Ahmad Nadvi, Siyar al-Sahabah, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Karachi, Pakistan: Dar al-Isha‘ah, 2004], 508) (Feroz al-Lughat, p. 1332, zir Lafz Maimanah)

Abu Idrees Khaulani narrates, “When I entered into the mosque in Damascus, Syria, I saw a young man with bright shining teeth and people were sat around him. Whenever people had a difference of opinion on a matter, they would present the matter to him and would give precedence to his opinion on the matter. When I enquired about him, I was informed that he was Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal.

“The next day in the afternoon, I went again and saw that he was already there before me and was offering his prayers. I waited and when he finished his prayer, I went before him and conveyed the greetings of peace. I then said, ‘I swear by Allah, I love you for His sake.’ Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal asked, ‘Do you swear by Allah?’ I replied, ‘Yes, I swear by Allah.’ Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal again asked, ‘Do you swear by Allah?’ I again replied, ‘Yes, I swear by Allah.’ Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal then took hold of the corner of my cloak and pulled me towards himself and said, ‘Rejoice, for I have heard the Messenger(sa) of Allah say that Allah the Exalted has stated, “Those who show love to one another for My sake, those who sit with one another for My sake, those who meet one another for My sake and those who spend their wealth for one another for My sake, will most surely be granted My love.”’” In other words, Allah the Almighty’s love will become incumbent for them. (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Muaz(ra) bin Jabal, Vol. 7, p. 353-354, Hadith 22380, Alam al-Kutub, Beirut, 1998)

Family

In one of the narrations it states that Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal had two wives. When it would be the turn of one wife, he would not even take water to drink from the other wife’s house; such were his standards of justice. In another narration it states that Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal had two wives. When it would be the turn of one wife, he would not even perform the ablution in the house of the other. Both of his wives passed away in Syria owing to the plague and both were buried in one grave. Whilst they were being buried, Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal drew a lot to decide who would be lowered into the grave first. This was the level of justice he possessed. (Hilyat al-Auliya, Vol. 1, Ch. 1, p. 204; Translated by Muhammad Asghar Mughal, Dar al-Isha‘ah, Karachi, 2006)

Sickness from Plague and Demise

In another narration in Siyar Al-Sahaba, it states that Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal had two wives who passed away due to the Plague of Amwas and it is also reported that one of his sons, Abdur Rahman, who took part in the Battle of Yarmuk alongside Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal also passed away due to the Plague of Amwas – this was a plague that spread during that time. (Sheikh Shah Moinuddin Ahmad Nadvi, Siyar al-Sahabah, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Karachi, Pakistan: Dar al-Isha‘ah, 2004], 510-511)

When Hazrat Abu Ubaidah(ra) passed away due to the Plague of Amwas, Hazrat Umar(ra) appointed Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal as the governor of Syria. I previously mentioned the details in relation to Amwas which was the name of a settlement situated 7 miles from Ramla in the direction of Jerusalem. Hazrat Muaz(ra) also passed away due to the Plague of Amwas in the same year. (Ibn Abd al-Barr, Al-Isti‘ab fi Ma‘rifat al-Ashab, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Jil, 1992], 1405) (Yaqut Ibn Abd Allah al-Hamawi, Mu‘jam al-Buldan, Vol. 4 [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar Ihya al-Turath al-Arabi], 177-178)

Kathir bin Murrah relates that during the period of his illness, Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal told them, “I have heard the Holy Prophet(sa) say something which till now I have kept hidden from you. I heard the Holy Prophet(sa) say that entrance into Paradise will become incumbent for one who states, ‘There is none worthy of worship except Allah.’” (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Muaz(ra) bin Jabal, Vol. 7, p. 355, Hadith 22383, Alam al-Kutub, Beirut, 1998)

In another narration it states that Hazrat Muaz(ra) stated, “The only reason why I did not inform you of this hadith was lest you solely relied on this and abandoned all other good deeds.” (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Muaz(ra) bin Jabal, Vol. 7, p. 361, Hadith 22410, Alam al-Kutub, Beirut, 1998)

When the plague spread in Syria, Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal also became ill due to the plague and owing to his illness was overcome with a state of unconsciousness. When he regained consciousness, he stated, “O Allah, cause this affliction [i.e. the plague] to take over me. I swear by Your honour that indeed You are aware that I love You.” Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal again fell unconscious and when he regained consciousness, he again offered the same prayer.

Nearer to the time of his demise, Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal asked if it was morning and was informed that the daybreak had not occurred yet. When dawn broke, Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal was subsequently informed and he said, “I seek refuge in Allah from the night whose morning takes one to the hell-fire. I welcome death and to meet my beloved who comes after a long time. O Allah, You indeed know that I fear You, but today I am in hope. I do not love the world and seek a long life so that I can dig streams and plant trees, rather so that I may endure the intense thirst of midday and the difficulties of my circumstances and sit in the company of those scholars who remain occupied in Your remembrance.”

In another narration it is mentioned that when Hazrat Muaz(ra) was close to his demise, he began to cry. Some people asked him why he was crying as he was a companion of the Holy Prophet(sa). He replied, “I am not crying because I fear death, nor am I crying because I am departing this world. The reason why I am crying is that there are only two groups of people: those who are heaven-bound and those who are hell-bound, and I do not know from which of these two groups I will be raised up again after death. I only fear Allah the Almighty and that is why I am crying.” (Ali Ibn al-Athir, Usd al-Ghabah fi Ma‘rifat al-Sahabah, Vol. 5, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, 2003], 189)

In Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal there is a narration of Hazrat Muaz(ra) in which he states, “I heard the Holy Prophet(sa) say, ‘Very soon you will migrate to Syria and it will be conquered at your hands. But then you will suffer from an outbreak of a disease which will consist of boils and blisters or cause a sharping pain. It will appear below the navel region and Allah will grant martyrdom to some people through this and will purify their deeds.’ O Allah! If it is true that indeed Muaz bin Jabal heard these words from the Holy Prophet(sa), then grant me and my family a large share from it [i.e. from the prophecy about the plague].” Thus, they all [i.e. Hazrat Muaz(ra) and his household] suffered from this plague and not a single one of them survived.

When the boil of the plague became visible on Hazrat Muaz’s(ra) index finger, he would say that this pleased him greatly and that even if he were given red camels, it would not please him more. (Musnad Ahmad bin Hanbal, Musnad Muaz(ra) bin Jabal, Vol. 7, p. 371, Hadith 22439, Alam al-Kutub, Beirut, 1998) In Tabari it is stated that a boil developed in the palm of his hand. He would look at his boil and kiss the back of the same hand, saying, “There is nothing in this world that I would exchange for this.” (Ibn Jarir al-Tabari, Tarikh al-Tabari, Vol. 4, Khuruj Umar bin al-Khattab ila al-Sham [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Fikr, 1987], 238)

Hazrat Muaz(ra) bin Jabal passed away in 18 AH. There are varying opinions with regards to his age at the time of his demise. His age has been recorded as 33, 34 or 38 years old. (Ali Ibn al-Athir, Usd al-Ghabah fi Ma‘rifat al-Sahabah, Vol. 5, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Beirut, Lebanon: Dar al-Kutub al-Ilmiyyah, 2003], 190) There a total of 157 narrations by related by Hazrat Muaz(ra). Two of these hadith are such that are found in both Bukhari and Muslim. (Sheikh Shah Moinuddin Ahmad Nadvi, Siyar al-Sahabah, Vol. 3, Muaz(ra) bin Jabal [Lahore, Pakistan: Idarah Islamiyyah], 156)