The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) once stated: ‘Do not assume the party of Companions to be only those who passed away in earlier times. Rather, there is another group which Allah the Exalted has mentioned in the Holy Qur’an. They too are included in Companions and will be with the Baruz [re-advent by way of reflection] of Ahmad. Therefore it is stated: ‘And among others from among them who have not yet joined them…’ (62:4). That is, do not have a limited understanding of the party of Companions; on the contrary, the community of the time of the Promised Messiah will also be among Companions.’ Hudhur explained that Ahmad is also a name of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) and the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) is his Baruz.
The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) also stated: ‘Commentators have accepted that this verse [62:4] is about the community of the Promised Messiah. The word ‘Minhum’ connotes that [their] inner inclination and proclivity will be like that of the Companions.’ Hudhur explained that those who lived through the lifetime of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace), met him, took his Bai’at and had the blessing of his company, advanced in their faith and belief and that is the group of people which is referred to here. Hudhur added that most certainly they have a standing and each one of them is a model for us whose piety is worthy of emulating. It is our good fortune that some incidents of the lives of these companions have reached us and through these we have come to know of accounts of the assemblies that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) graced. Hudhur said Hudhur often gives discourses based on the accounts of these companions and will do so in today’s sermon. As a result of the Tarbiyyat of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace), and a result of the spiritual light that he had attained from his master, the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) the lives of these companions were transformed to the extent that each one of them had a distinct glory. This was regardless of their social status. Their trust in God had a wondrous glory, their passion to serve religion was selfless and uniquely glorious and they deeply loved the Holy Qur’an. God Himself taught them the Holy Qur’an and bestowed spiritual knowledge on them and this illustrates their special connection with God. God’s treatment of them in every other matter was also of the kind that God grants to those who are near to Him. The fact that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) taught them ways to solve problems and did their Tarbiyyat shows how fortunate were those companions that after 1400 years they found the time of the true and ardent devotee of the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him).
Hudhur chose the following accounts from the register of traditions of the companions of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace):
Hadhrat Maulwi Sufi Atta Muhammad sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He writes that he read in the paper that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) was going to visit the city of Jhelum. He became anxious about not getting leave from work to visit Jhelum. So, he told his family that as the next day was a Sunday he would try and visit Jhelum. The railway station was three miles away and the route leading to it was hilly which was difficult to cross even at day time and Maulwi sahib started his walk to the station at night with little time to catch the train. Putting his trust in God, he started walking. He writes that through the way, by chance someone with a light stayed ahead of him on the path and thus he crossed the route running. When he reached the station the train was ready to depart. He reached Jhelum and saw the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace). Someone present said it would be nice if Maulwi sahib would recite his poem that he wrote at the time of taking Bai’at. With the permission of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace), he stood up and recited the poem enthusiastically. He writes that when he had originally written the poem and sent it to the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) he had requested to be given a Wazifah (formulaic prayer). After verbally reciting the poem, he again requested the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) to give him a Wazifah and the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) gave him exactly the same Wazifah as he had done before. Maulwi sahib was astonished at the excellent memory of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) who had said to him that there was no need for any other Wazifah other than to say Durud in abundance, recite Surah Fatihah in abundance, say Istaghfar in abundance and read the Holy Qur’an while deliberating over it. He said this was the Wafizah for success. Hudhur said people often ask him similar question and he too gives similar response. In another place the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) wrote that the prayer ‘La Hawla wa la quwwata illa billa’ [There is no power to avoid sin or to do good except through Allah] should also be said.
Hadhrat Khalifa Nur uddin sahib (may Allah be pleased with him) Hudhur clarified that this was not an account of Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I (may Allah be pleased with him). Nur uddin sahib writes that once he stopped in a jungle on a long journey to offer Salat and said the prayer starting with ‘Allahumma inni a ‘uthu bika minal hummi wal huzni…’ [O Allah I seek Your protection against problems and anxieties…’] with the deepest of pathos and tenderness. He writes that after this incident God provided for him in such a way that in spite of having no regular trade he never faced adversity and God provided immensely for him from the unseen.
Hadhrat Maulwi Jalal Uddin sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): His son Mian Sharafat Ahmad sahib writes that Maulwi sahib used to say that God provided whatever he was in need of and he did not need to ask anyone for anything. When he was first employed by the Anjamun his allowance was meagre. Grain was very expensive in those days. His father worked under the person in-charge of the finances called Khan sahib. One day Khan sahib said to Maulwi sahib that he worked so assiduously because he received a wage. Maulwi sahib replied that he had not asked for a wage, in fact he had devoted his life and said that he would not take his wage any more. Khan sahib asked him would he continue to work in the same way or not? Maulwi sahib replied he would work even more diligently and with perfect obedience adding that work and obedience had no correlation with pay. Maulwi sahib then went on a Tabligh trip. As was routine in those day, he made the trip on foot. On the way he thought that the wage paid for all the necessities and as times were hard at that juncture, he wondered how he would make ends meet. He was thus wondering when suddenly he heard a thunderous sound which made him shudder. The voice asked him whether he had always received a wage and did he grow up on a wage? The moment he heard the sound all his anxieties vanished and he said in a most humble manner, ‘O Lord, what need do I have of this wage; this wage is nothing compared to You.’ Following this incident God took such care of him that his situation became better than before. Maulwi sahib said that Khan sahib was his old friend who had jokingly said those words to him which became a source of removing the shirk [associating partners with God] of wage from Maulwi sahib’s mind.
His son further writes that Maulwi sahib saw a dream that Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I (may Allah be pleased with him) is gambling. He related the dream to the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) who answered, ‘Maulwi sahib, Maulwi sahib [Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I] indeed gambles, but with God. Just like gamblers put everything on the line, he too does not leave anything for himself. Likewise, Maulwi sahib puts everything on the line for God.’ Hudhur explained that we are indeed aware of the numerous times God provided for Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I in extraordinary ways.
Hadhrat Sufi Ghulam Muhammad sahib (may Allah be pleased with him) writes that in 1912 he did his BA from Punjab University and asked Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I (may Allah be pleased with him) if he should memorise the Qur’an or go on to take his MA. He was advised to memorise the Qur’an first. Sufi sahib did this in six months and when he informed Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I (may Allah be pleased with him) he offered a Sajda [posture of prostration] of gratefulness.
Hadhrat Syed Akhtar uddin Ahmad (may Allah be pleased with him): He writes that he is desperately eager to narrate about the perfect Baruz of our master the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) but is wary of his memory as a long time had elapsed when he had kept the blessed company at the age of twenty four. He writes that when he visited Qadian with a relative, they were offered special diet of rice for many months and the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) had instructed the workers to take special care of them. He also writes that during his student days he used to attend the Dars of Qur’an at Qadian given by Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I (may Allah be pleased with him) who was most affectionate. He writes that when his parents asked him to return home, owing to expenses, he expressed uncertainty about returning to Qadian to Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I (may Allah be pleased with him). Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I (may Allah be pleased with him) told him that when he was ready to come to Qadian he should let him know and he would send him travel expenses. He also recalls that once Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I (may Allah be pleased with him) told him that he had heard that he studied the Qur’an a lot from various teachers. He advised him, ‘adopt God’s Taqwa, He will teach you Himself.’
Hadhrat Khair uddin sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He took his Bai’at in 1906 and also saw the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) in the same year. He writes that one evening the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) stayed in the mosque after Maghrib Salat. Incidentally, there was no light in the mosque that evening. Someone asked a question that people say that Jesus (on whom be peace) used to create animals. The Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) replied, ‘Sheikh sahib, God is the Creator; is Jesus also a creator?’ He writes as it was dark he does not know who the Sheikh sahib was, but he did not speak again. He also writes that he was very keen to study the Qur’an further and once saw the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) in a dream saying to him, ‘come to Qadian, we will teach you the Qur’an ourselves.’ This was after the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) had passed away. Later, he saw another dream in which he saw that he had migrated to Qadian and is taking his luggage off in a field and is asking what the exact place is called. He is informed via heavenly signs that it is called ‘Ibrahimi Jungle.’ He writes that at the time of the dream he did not know that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) had said that God had given him the name of Ibrahim. Hudhur explained that God verified the names given to the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) through his followers.
Hadhrat Khair uddin sahib also writes that he does not say it out of humility, he really was a sinful person at the time and most certainly what he is about to relate he experienced through the spiritual light of Prophethood. Whoever connects to this light attains a measure of it in accordance with his capacity. He writes he had no idea what revelation was or what vision was or indeed what true dreams were. By connecting to the one sent by God not only did he gain knowledge of the three but personally experienced them all.
Hudhur explained that it is a well-known fact that people used to often ask Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I (may Allah be pleased with him) that when he met the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) he was already a very pious man, what did he gain after meeting him. His answer used to be that among other beneficences, previously he used to see the Holy Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) in dreams but after meeting the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) he did so with his eyes open, i.e. in visions.
Hadhrat Khair uddin goes on to write that he once received a revelation while in Masjid Mubarak that people of this community alone will be prosperous. He said he observes that ordinary people [of the community] are meeting good ends and they are doing good deeds and their prayers seem to have special effect. He writes that once he asked God to let him knows ways to gain Divine nearness. God informed him that there are two ways to gain His nearness; by paying chanda or doing Tabligh. He submitted to God that he was not very well –educated, how could he do Tabligh? In response God said that He had taught him the Qur’an. At that moment Khair uddin sahib was reminded of the verse: ‘And thou threwest not when thou didst throw, but it was Allah Who threw…’ (8:18) Hudhur explained this verse is about the Divine help to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be on him) during the battle of Badr. Khair uddin sahib writes when he was at his village he had seen the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) in his dream who had asked him to come over to him so that he would teach him the Qur’an. The promise was thus made by the Messiah (on whom be peace) but the answer was given by God.
Hadhrat Hafiz Nabi Buksh sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He met the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) before he made his claim. His son writes that his father had ardent love for the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) and when he was asked to narrate something about him, he said he did not trust his memory to be absolutely accurate and did not wish to attribute anything erroneously to the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace). He was employed in the department of waterways and as such had to walk long distances even in intense heat. He used to get exhausted but always woke up to offer Tahajjud and kept his fasts during Ramadan. He encouraged his children to keep fasts and to offer Salat and kept a strict eye on them in this regard. He personally taught the Qur’an to his children and when due to work he had no time during the day, he would teach them at night. His son writes that they were three brothers and the eldest passed away while he was a student. They had gone to meet the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) at the time when he was writing Braheen e Ahmadiyya and had taken the Bai’at very early on. He writes that his father submitted to the will of God at times of grief and demonstrated a most excellent example of this when his older brother passed away three days before his sister was to be married. The in-laws-to-be offered to postpone the wedding but Hafiz sahib said the death was God’s decree and decided to go ahead with the wedding. His son further writes that with the grace of God his father had no problem at the times of the first and the second Khilafat and had no hesitation in taking their Bai’ats and demonstrated a great example of obedience to Khilafat. His son, Hakeem Fazlul Rahman sahib writes that he was transferred to Africa twice for Tabligh for long periods of time. Both times his father told him not to show any kind of impatience under any circumstances, even in instances where if he had returned home, his son could have given him much needed support. Yet his father told him to only return when Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih ordered him back. Hudhur said a great-grandson of Hadhrat Hafiz Nabi Buksh sahib, Umair, was martyred during the 28 May 2010 incident in Model Town, Lahore. He leaves behind two young children, may God be their Protector and Helper. Hudhur said we should pray for the bereaved families of the young martyrs, may God facilitate marriages of the young widows.
Hadhrat Muhammad Yaqub sahib (may Allah be pleased with him): He took his Bai’at in 1900 and saw the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) in 1904. He writes that the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) used to hold little children most affectionately in his lap. He recalls that he would play in the lap of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) for long and gaze at his face which was light upon light. He writes that when the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) came to Lahore he would visit their house. Once the entire family was waiting for the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace). After he had arrived and gone inside the house, a crowd of villains started throwing stones at the house. His father and uncles consulted what to do. Yaqub sahib was young at the time so the servant who looked after him was asked to take him away. The adults then valiantly contended with the throng of villains until they went away. The Promised Messiah said, ‘let them go.’
He writes whenever he visited Qadian during his childhood he would go and see Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I (may Allah be pleased with him) at his clinic, who would take him in lap. He found Hadhrat Khalifatul Masih I often recited the Qur’an and taught it to children. He writes from the clinic he would go to Masjid Mubarak where he would see the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) who would sit him next to him. He writes Qadian was a very small place at the time and it could not be envisaged that the revelations of the Promised Messiah would be fulfilled in this [magnificent] manner.
Hudhur said such were the companions of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) who, after coming in his Bai’at brought about pious changes in themselves and forged a connection with God and became extremely strong in their bond with the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace). Their sense of honour for faith was reminiscent of the earlier Companions. They adhered to and had insight of the Promised Messiah’s (on whom be peace) words: ‘God has established this community and has demonstrated hundreds of signs in its corroboration. From this His objective is that this community becomes a community of companions and then the best age returns. As those who enter this community enter in the category of ‘… among others from among them…’ they should forsake the apparels of false pastimes and turn all their attention towards God.’ Hudhur said the companions of the Promised Messiah (on whom be peace) fulfilled this teaching and wish of his. May God also enable us to bring about pious changes in ourselves and to stay firm on them. Hudhur said from midnight tomorrow the New Year starts, may it be more blessed for our Community and may God restrain our enemies and may He enable them to recognise the Truth. May He immensely bless each Ahmadi in personal and communal capacity.
Next Hudhur announced that he would lead the funeral Prayer in absentia of Jamal uddin sahib who was auditor of the Anjuman. He was born in Qadian and had started his service to the Community at the age of eighteen. He was a Moosi whose service spanned fifty five years. He served in various departments and was appointed the auditor in 2003, a post he held till his death. He was a quiet person who led a simple life, he was a decent person and was most affectionate towards his workers. He was sympathetic towards everyone and was a brave man. He had ardent love for Khilafat and gave preference to Jama’at work over personal work. He carried out his work in true spirit of Waqf. May God elevate his station, grant steadfastness to his children and enable them to carry on his virtues.