- Khilafat: Its Greatness and Blessings
- What is Khilafat?
- Need for Khilafat
- Prophethood and Khilafat
- The Election of Prophet and Khalifah
- The High Status of Khalifah
- Distinctive Features of Khilafat-e-Rashida
- Khilafat-e-Rashida I
- Points of Distinction
- In the Eyes of the West
- Khilafat-e-Rashida: A Continuous Blessing
- The Holy Qur’an
- The Hadith
- The Sayings
- The Middle Period
- Ahmadiyya Khilafat
- Khilafat for ever
- Khilafat-e-Rashida Re-instated
- What’s the proof?
- The Closing
by Maulana Ataul Mujeeb Rashed, Imam of the London Mosque
The institution of Khilafat is that blessed heavenly system of guidance, granted by Allah the Exalted, to a community of believers for their spiritual progress and development. The significance of this Divine bounty is like the ‘rope of Allah‘. Firmly holding onto it is a verification of their belief as well as a guarantee for their peace, security and spiritual advancement.
The blessed subject of Khilafat is indeed like a life line and a source of real inspiration. It brings with it a message of spiritual elevation which takes a believer closer and closer to Allah the Almighty and enables him to achieve the purpose of his creation. Without Khilafat there is no life, no joy and no spirituality. And, under the benign shade of Khilafat, we are able to enjoy all the blessings of this life with a sure guarantee of endless blessings in the Hereafter. Khilafat is, indeed, a bliss unspeakable. It is like a mine of bounties which can never be exhausted.
Khilafat: Its Greatness and Blessings
The subject of Khilafat is mentioned very comprehensively in Ayat-Istikhlaaf (The verse of Khilafat) in Chapter Al-Nur of the Holy Qur‘an is as follows. The wording is:
وَعَدَ اللَّهُ الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا مِنْكُمْ وَعَمِلُوا الصَّالِحَاتِ لَيَسْتَخْلِفَنَّهُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ كَمَا اسْتَخْلَفَ الَّذِينَ مِنْ قَبْلِهِمْ وَلَيُمَكِّنَنَّ لَهُمْ دِينَهُمُ الَّذِي ارْتَضَىٰ لَهُمْ وَلَيُبَدِّلَنَّهُمْ مِنْ بَعْدِ خَوْفِهِمْ أَمْنًا ۚ يَعْبُدُونَنِي لَا يُشْرِكُونَ بِي شَيْئًا ۚ وَمَنْ كَفَرَ بَعْدَ ذَٰلِكَ فَأُولَٰئِكَ هُمُ الْفَاسِقُونَ (24:56)
The translation reads:
‘Allah has promised to those among you (i.e. the followers of Hazrat Muhammad (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) who believe and do good works that He will surely make them Successors in the earth, as He made Successors from among those who were before them; and that He will surely establish for them their religion which He has chosen for them; and that He will surely give them in exchange security and peace after their fear: They will worship Me, and they will not associate anything with Me. Then whoso is ungrateful after that, they will be the rebellious.’ (Ch.24:V.56)
This verse contains most exquisite subject matters. In it Allah the Exalted has made a definite promise for the establishment of Khilafat for the community of believers and has made it conditional to belief and good works. Two grand blessings of Khilafat are cited; firm establishment of religion and the transformation of a state of fear into a state of peace. It is also mentioned that the lofty objectives and the sweet fruits of Khilafat are also two-fold; true establishment of worship of God and the Unity of God.
What is Khilafat?
The literal meanings of the word Khilafat are of vicegerancy and succession. The Holy Qur‘an has mentioned this term in four different categories. Owing to the subject of my speech, I will be concentrating on that category in which this word is used for the deputy of a prophet and his successor.
The Promised Messiah (May peace be upon him) says:
‘The meaning of Khalifah is that of a successor who renews faith. Those who come in place of prophets to dispel the darkness that spreads after their era are called Khulafa. (Malfoozat Vol. 4, p.383)
Need for Khilafat
Regarding the necessity and the wisdom behind the institution of Khilafat the Promised Messiah (May peace be upon him) says:
‘A successor is called a Khalifah. The successor of a prophet in the real sense can only be the one who has the excellences of a prophet on a shadowlike basis…in fact a Khalifah is the shadow of a prophet. As no person can live forever, therefore Allah the Exalted willed to establish the beings of prophets, who are the most eminent and the best among all the beings of the world, on a shadowlike basis till the Day of Judgement. It is with this objective that Allah the Exalted chose Khilafat so that the world may never and at no time be deprived of the blessings of prophet-hood.’ (Shahadat-ul-Qur’an p.57 Ruhani Khaza’in vol. 6, p.353)
Prophethood and Khilafat
The well-established way of Allah, the Almighty for the guidance of mankind is that the seeds of the Divine message of guidance are sown by His chosen prophets and the stem of guidance begins to grow. The advent of these prophets is actually the first manifestation of Allah, the Almighty.
When the time of their departure from this world arrives, Allah once again demonstrates a wonder of His power for the completion of the somewhat incomplete work of the prophets; to continue to nurture and develop their works and to take it to the point of culmination. This is the sign of Allah‘s second manifestation in the form of Khilafat.
The Election of Prophet and Khalifah
It is worth remembering that both the institutions of prophethood and Khilafat are from God but there is a difference regarding their election. Allah the Exalted elects a prophet directly because at that time of oppression there is no existence of a community of believers, whereas after the advent of a prophet a community of believers is formed. A community that satisfactorily fulfils the criteria of belief and good works in the sight of Allah is given the opportunity, as a mark of honour, to express its opinion at the time of the election of a Khalifah. On the face of it, this appears to be an election but in reality it is a selection made by God. The pure hearts of the believers are, with the power and order of Allah the Exalted, inclined to choose that pure being which, in fact, is the choice of Allah, the Exalted.
It may be noted here that each Khalifah, who is the manifestation of the institution of Khilafat, is the Khalifah of the prophet who has passed away and is not the Khalifah of the Khalifah before him. That is why these Caliphs are always given the title of Khalifat-ur-Rasul, Successor to the Prophet. It is in accordance to this principle that each Khalifah in the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community is called Khalifatul Masih.
The High Status of Khalifah
God, through His complete authority, bestows the office of Khilafat to the Khalifah. God makes a Khalifah and none has the authority to dismiss him from this office. He is helped by God. God‘s help is with him at every moment. God becomes his Teacher and Guide. He acquires religious knowledge and discernment from God. God Himself generates love and affection for him in others‘ hearts and these circles of love and devotion continue to widen. Illumined by the Light of God he becomes the fountainhead of light and then he is bestowed the miracle of acceptance of prayers. Obeying him is actually obeying the Prophet whose Khalifah he is and this very obedience ultimately guarantees connecting that person with the obedience of God.
Distinctive Features of Khilafat-e-Rashida
Whenever Khilafat is established on the principles mentioned in the Holy Qur‘an it is always the truly guided Khilafat. Hazrat Khalifatul Masih II(ra) has listed the special features which distinguish Khilafat-e-Rashida from all other forms of government. I summarise his points here:
Allah says in the Holy Qur‘an:
إِنَّ اللَّهَ يَأْمُرُكُمْ أَنْ تُؤَدُّوا الْأَمَانَاتِ إِلَىٰ أَهْلِهَا
Verily Allah commands you to make over the trusts to those entitled to them… (Ch.4:V.59)
The Khilafat-e-Rashida is elective and Allah Almighty has left the method of election open to the believers.
A Khalifah is under the yoke of Shari’ah (law.) He can reject the counsel of his advisers but he cannot ignore the laws of Shari’ah. Thus, although he is a constitutional head, he is not absolutely free.
In addition to the control of Shari’ah, he is subject to consultation as well. In all important matters, the Khalifah is bound to consult his colleagues and to follow their advice as far as possible. Finally he takes the decision under Divine guidance.
Apart from the Shari’ah rules and the requirement of consultation, since a Khalifah is the religious head as well as the leader of the obligatory prayers, he is morally and subconsciously obliged to lead a righteous path but this situation does not apply to a political leader, whether elected or not.
A Khalifah is equal to other fellow beings in human rights as prescribed in Islam. This is not the case of other rulers in the world. A Khalifah can secure his rights through the judicial system just as people can obtain their rights from him through the same process. A Khalifah is granted a lesser infallibility. As he is a component of the Divine mechanism, a Khalifah has been promised a limited providential infallibility from major mistakes liable to bring about disastrous consequences. In such situations, he is assured of God‘s succour and help against adversaries. He is the one who enjoys Divine assistance. This unique position is not available to any other type of leader.
The Khalifah is not aligned to any political party and his position is that of a father. It is not permissible, therefore, that he should incline towards any one party. Allah says:
وَإِذَا حَكَمْتُمْ بَيْنَ النَّاسِ أَنْ تَحْكُمُوا بِالْعَدْلِ
“When you judge between men, you judge with justice” (Ch.4:V.59)
That is, a person in the position of a Khalifah should exercise complete justice, leaning neither to an individual nor a party. (Al-Furqan, Khilafat Issue, July 1958)
Allah the Almighty has made a very clear and emphatic promise about the establishment of a spiritual system of leadership among the community of believers.
On the basis of this Divine promise, the Holy Prophets (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) further mentioned this everlasting principle:
مَاکَانَتْ نَبُوَّۃٌ قَطُّ اِلَّا تَبِعَتْھَا خِلَافۃ (کنزالعمال الفصل الاول فی بعض خصائص الانبیاء حدیث 3224)
‘The Prophethood is always followed by Khilafat’
He further elaborated by saying:
‘The Khilafat to be established after him will be based on the precept of Prophethood, upholding the same standard of values.’ (Musnad Ahmad, Mishkatul Masabih, kitaburriqaaq, baabul-indhar wat-tahdheer, p.1479, Hadith 5379)
The Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) further outlined the jobs to be performed by his successors. He said:
‘O my Allah, have mercy upon my successors who will come after me, relating my sayings and my practices and teaching the same to other people.’ (Jami As-saghir by Allamah Suyuti Vol. 1, p.60)
These two Ahadith elucidate the fundamental principle that Khilafat in essence is a continuation of the mission of the Prophet. The objectives and the aims of Khilafat and Prophethood remain the same.
The Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) further said that:
اَلْخِلَا فَۃُ ثَلَاثُوْنَ عَاماً
‘’The Khilafat to be established immediately after me shall continue for thirty years. ‘ (Mishkatul Masabih, Kitabul Fitan,Babul Malaham, p. 1484 Hadith 5395)
Emphasising the importance of this period, he further said:
عَلَیْکُمْ بِسُنَّتِیْ وَ سُنَّۃِ الْخُلَفَا ءِ الرَّاشِدِیْنَ الْمَھْدِیِّیْنَ
‘’Follow in my footsteps and the footsteps of Khulafa-e-Rashideen who would be fully guided to the right path.’‘ (Tirmazi, Kitabul Ilm, Babul Akhze Bissunnah)
These clear elucidations left absolutely no doubt that a system of Khilafat was going to be established after the demise of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and certain individuals would be there as the spiritual embodiment of this system.
This is exactly what happened. Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiq, Hazrat Umar bin Al-Khattab, Hazrat Uthman bin Affan and Hazrat Ali bin Abi Talib were chosen as Khalifah one after the other. Their total period of Khilafat was nearly thirty years. This period of Khilafat is generally known and described as Khilafat-e-Rashida, the rightly guided Khilafat.
Points of Distinction
It is interesting and inspiring to note that the first era of Khilafat-e-Rashida has several unique points of distinction. For example, it is a period closely connected with the blessed period of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). It started just after his sad demise and as such, it was the very first practical manifestation of the promise given in the Holy Qur‘an. (Ch.24:v.56) It is a period about which the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) made a precise prediction, even indicating the exact duration of it. Moreover, its name is derived from the wording of Khulafa-e-Rashideen used by the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), obedience to whom was strongly stressed by him, mentioning it along with his own traditions. Another distinction of this period is that all four Khulafa, who had this honour of being chosen as successors, were not only prominent companions of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) but also from among those who were given the glad tidings of paradise during their lifetime. Moreover, all four were closely related to the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). The first two were his fathers in law while the latter two were his sons in law. At least three out of four Khulafa also have the honour of being mentioned as his successors by the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) himself.
It is not possible for me to go into the details of blessings and achievements of this period of Khilafat but I must say that during this period the whole world was able to witness that all the blessings, promised in the Holy Qur‘an were thoroughly enjoyed by the Muslims. During this blessed era Islam‘s glory was established not only in Arabia but also in other parts of the world.
It was an age of advancement and climax of Islam that even the colossal opponents were powerless to contend with. Such was the state of the grandeur of Islam and the awe of the Muslims that the great empires of kings and emperors would tremble at their name and would bow down to them. The truth is that during this golden era of the Rightly Guided Khilafat, Islam attained such glory and eminence that even today, when an impartial historian casts his eyes on this era, he is amazed. He fails to understand as to how the inhabitants of the desert of Arabia became the conquerors of the world. He does not realise that it was the fruit of Khilafat-e-Rashida; that Rightly Guided Khilafat with which the destiny of the triumph of Islam was linked.
In the Eyes of the West
The Khilafat-e-Rashida was indeed a golden period of the history of Islam. The teachings of Islam were faithfully followed and put into practice. The Khulafa through their unstinting loyalty to Islamic values, their personal nobility of character and exemplary adherence to the teachings and practices of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), served as role models for all. The nobility of the Khulafa and their moral excellence has been acknowledged even by non-Muslim writers. I quote here just two short statements from famous historians.
Lieutenant-General Sir John Glubb writes in his book: The Empire of the Arabs, p.26:
‘Both Abu Bakr and Umar had been close intimates of the Prophet and were utterly dedicated to the service of Islam. Like the Apostle himself, they were indifferent to money and continued when they had attained power to live simple peasant lives. Clad in patched garments made of coarse woollen material, they were not above milking their own goats as they had always done.’
Edward Gibbon writes in his book The History of the Decline and fall of the Roman Empire, p.869:
‘An historian who balances the four caliphs with a hand unshaken by superstition will calmly pronounce that their manners were alike pure and exemplary; that their zeal was fervent, and probably sincere; and that, in the midst of the riches and power, their lives were devoted to the practice of moral and religious duties.’
Khilafat-e-Rashida: A Continuous Blessing
It is of paramount importance to understand that the blessing of Khilafat-e-Rashida is a continuous blessing. This is clearly established from the verses of the Holy Qur‘an, the sayings of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and the explanations given by the Promised Messiah(as).
The Holy Qur’an
Let us look at the Holy Qur‘an first. In the famous verse of Khilafat (Ch.24:V.56), Allah, the Almighty has used the word yastakhlifanna. This means that Allah is definitely going to establish the Khulafa. Now the expression used here yastakhlifanna has a meaning of repetition and continuity in it. It refers to the present tense and also to the future. Therefore, it does contain a promise which is bound to continue in future as well. Furthermore the use of the suffix Noon-e-thaqeelah (نون ثقیلہ) makes it all the more emphatic and prophetic.
It is also important to note that the word minkum ( (منکمused here also clearly establishes the continuity of this blessing of Allah. The word literally means ―from among you‖ but it is wrong to take this reference only applicable to the Muslims present at the time of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). As a matter of fact, this is an ongoing glorious promise of Allah, the Almighty, to all such believers in Islam who truly fulfil the requirement of faith and good deeds till the end of time. It would be a great folly to restrict the application of this promise to a limited period of time.
In the Holy Qur‘an expression has been used no less than 82 times. Except on two or three occasions, where specific exceptional reference is made, it has always been used in a manner that is applicable to all the Muslims till the day of judgement.
Looking at the verse of Khilafat once again, Allah, the Almighty, has mentioned here an analogy, saying: ―as He made successors from among those who were before them. We know that the system of succession continued for nearly 1400 years after Hazrat Moses(as). How is it possible that in case of Islam it should be considered to be limited to only 30 years? The Muslims have been described in the Holy Qur‘an as:
كُنْتُمْ خَيْرَ أُمَّةٍ أُخْرِجَتْ لِلنَّاسِ
You are the best people raised for the good of mankind). (3:111)
Allah, the Almighty, says to the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him):
وَكَانَ فَضْلُ اللَّهِ عَلَيْكَ عَظِيمًا
great is Allah‘s Grace on you (4:114).
These three verses taken together clearly establish the Khilafat to be a continuous blessing for the true followers of Islam who will fulfil the two required conditions.
There is a very prophetic and explicit saying of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) narrated by Hazrat Hudhaifa, recorded in Musnad Ahmad. It reads:
‘Prophethood shall remain amongst you for as long as Allah wills. He will then cause it to end. Then a Khilafat will be established in the precepts of prophethood which will last for as long as Allah wills. He will then cause it to end. Oppressive kingship will follow [which will inflict great pain and misery on its subjects]. Its rule will last for as long as Allah wills. He will then cause it to end. After this, tyrannical monarchy will follow. Their rule will last for as long as Allah wills. Allah will then cause it to end. Khilafat will then be re-established in the precepts of Prophethood. Thereafter, the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) became silent [and added no more comments].’ (Musnad Ahmad, Mishkatul Masabih, kitaburriqaaq, baabul-indhar wat-tahdheer, p.1479, Hadith 5379)
This profound Hadith clearly states that after giving the glad tidings of the reestablishment of Khilafat in the latter days, the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) did not specify any time limit for it nor did he add any other comment. This is a clear indication of the continuity of this Khilafat without any break or gap in it.
The Promised Messiah(as) has also made it absolutely clear that the blessings of Khilafat to be established in the Muslim Ummah after the demise of the Holy Prophet of Islam (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was destined to be perpetuated.
‘’He (i.e. Allah) has established the institution of Khilafat so that the world should never remain without the blessings of prophethood. Therefore any person who believes in the Khilafat to last for only 30 years, totally ignores the very purpose of its establishment.‘ (Shahadatul Qur’an p.58)
‘Allah has given His promise that He will establish the system of Khilafat in this religion after the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and will extend it to the Day of Judgement. Just as there were Khulafa and Kings for a very long period in the dispensation of Moses, He will do it the same way here in Islam and will not let this system be obliterated. ‘ (Tabligh-e-Risalat Vol-3, p.60)
The Middle Period
This whole discussion makes it clear that the Khilafat, promised in the Holy Qur‘an, is basically a permanent blessing but it was made conditional to the right belief and good deeds. At the end of the first era of Khilafat, because of the degeneration and due to the absence of the required conditions, this blessing was, in a way, withdrawn from those people. But the history of Islam continued precisely in the same order as mentioned in the tradition of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) quoted above. Oppressive governments came and went; dynastic monarchies and Muslim empires were established and faded away.
Finally the time came for the promised revival of Islam. The second spiritual advent of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) took place in the person of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad of Qadian. He claimed to be the Imam of the age, the Promised Mahdi, and the awaited Messiah – a prophet of God, but in full subordination to the Prophet of Islam, Muhammad (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). He initiated the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at in 1889. His main objective and the purpose of his advent was to revive the pure teachings of Islam, to revive faith in one God and to unify the whole of mankind by bringing them all under the banner of the Holy Prophet of Islam (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), who is the final messenger of God for the whole of mankind with a perfect and everlasting message for all times.
After successfully accomplishing his mission and establishing a vibrant community of believers, he passed away in 1908. Before his demise, he wrote his famous book, The Will in which he made it absolutely clear that, in order to carry on his mission to its ultimate fulfilment, Allah the Almighty, following His own tradition, would show the second manifestation of His power. It was a clear reference to the promise of Allah, the Exalted, contained in the Holy Qur‘an, to bestow the blessing of Khilafat upon the community of true believers. Moreover, it was exactly in line with the prophetic statement of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) that Allah the Almighty was going to re-establish the Khilafat on the precept of prophethood.
A very interesting point is to be noted here. The Promised Messiah has used a particular terminology of Qudrat-e-Thaniyyah i.e. the second manifestation of God for the establishment of Khilafat. It is indeed most befitting from this aspect as well that the establishment of Khilafat on the precept of prophethood was actually happening for the second time in the history of the world.
Upon the demise of the Promised Messiah, Hazrat Maulana Nurud Din was unanimously elected to be his first successor. He was entitled Khalifatul Masih to continue his mission. In 1914, Hazrat Mirza Bashirud Din Mahmood Ahmad(ra) was chosen as the second Khalifah. When he passed away in 1965, the third Khalifah was elected in the person of Hazrat Mirza Nasir Ahmad(rh) .Then at his demise in 1982, Hazrat Mirza Tahir Ahmad(rh) was elected to be the fourth Khalifatul Masih. The fifth Khalifa and the current supreme head of the Jama’at, Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmad (May Allah be his Helper) was chosen in 2003.
This is how, by the grace of Allah, the institution of Khilafat, on the precept of prophethood, was re-established, fulfilling all the prophecies contained in the Holy Qur‘an and the blessed sayings of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).
Khilafat for ever
Hazrat Promised Messiah has stated very categorically that now the Khilafat to be re-instated on the precept of prophethood, is bound to continue till the end of the time.
‘Its coming is better for you for it is permanent and will not be cut off till the day of judgement‘. (The Will, pp.6-7)
‘Once I have departed, God will bring about for you the second manifestation of His power (i.e. Khilafat) and it will remain with you forever. ‘ (The Will, p.10)
Moreover, all the five Khulafa of the Promised Messiah have also mentioned repeatedly that this blessing of Khilafat is everlasting and it will continue up to the day of judgement.
By the Grace of Allah, we know it for certain and believe it with profound conviction that this Khilafat which has been established in Jama’at Ahmadiyya is actually the second phase of the same Khilafat-e-Rashida which was established following the demise of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). It is truly the Khilafat-e-Rashida revived and re-instated in this age. It is, in fact, continuation of the same Khilafat-e-Rashida promised by Allah, the Almighty, to the community of believers if they truly believe and perform good deeds.
There has never been any shortage of such people or groups who aspired for Khilafat and even did their best to grab it. But all their hopes and efforts were unsuccessful and this blessing was bestowed by Allah the Almighty, upon this community which truly satisfied the required conditions in the sight of God. This, as such, is a proof of the fact that the only community fulfilling the required criteria is none other than the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at.
In the Hadith narrated by Hazrat Hudhaifa(ra), the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) referring to the Khilafat to be established following his demise named it as Khilafat-e-Rashida and also described the same as خلافۃ علی منہاج النبوۃ Caliphate on the precept of Prophethood (Musnad Ahmad V.4 P273) . Now it is very important that in the same Hadith, while mentioning the re-establishment of Khilafat after a long interval, the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) spoke for the second time exactly the same wording of ‘Khilafat on the precept of Prophethood’’ which is the other name of Khilafate-Rashida. So it is quite evident that this period of Khilafat in Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama‘at is definitely the continuation and revival of the same Khilafat -e-Rashida.
Secondly, the Promised Messiah while explaining the system of Khilafat to be established after him used the wording of Qudrat-e-Thaniyyah, the second manifestation of God. Elaborating it further, he cited the example of Hazrat Abu Bakr Siddiq(ra), the first Khalifa-e-Rashid of the Holy Prophet (May peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and I quote:
‘At that critical hour, Allah made Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra) stand firm and through him He once again showed a manifestation of His Power.’ (The Will, p.9)
This specific reference of Hazrat Abu Bakr(ra) makes it clear, beyond any shadow of doubt, that the current system of Khilafat in Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at is a replication of Khilafat-e-Rashida.
What’s the proof?
An outstanding proof of the fact that today, it is the Jama’at Ahmadiyya which has been blessed with the true form of Khilafat-e-Rashida is the practical testimony of Allah, the Exalted. All the blessings of Khilafat-e-Rashida, as mentioned in the Holy Qur‘an and Ahadith, are descending upon this Jama’at like a continuous heavy rain. Just to give you a taste of that I present briefly only three aspects.
The history of the Ahmadiyya Community is witness to the fact that under the guidance of the highly eminent personifications of His Second Manifestation, with the grace and blessings of Allah, the Community has acquired a distinguished and eminent global identity. The whole world is well aware of its efforts in the fields of propagation of Islam, education and its work for humanity. The Community is spreading the beautiful teachings of Islam as the vanguard of high values of love, peace and tolerance and for upholding the law of the land. It is held in esteem for publishing the Holy Qur‘an and other Islamic literature. Today, with the grace of God, this Community is well established in 210 countries of the world and its membership is in tens of millions and increasing day by day.
Is it not enough proof that the blessing of consolidation of faith and its progress has been granted to the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at?
Secondly, whenever the community had to go through a period of trial, every time Divine help came to its rescue. For example, the Community went through critical phases of its history in 1908-1914- 1965-1982 and then in 2003. Today, each Ahmadi is a living testimony to the fact that how God changed each fear into peace through Khilafat-e-Ahmadiyya and how He granted dignity and stability to the religion of Islam. This is a great favour of Allah, the Exalted that the sun of Khilafat continues to shine upon us day and night.
Thirdly, the history of the Jama’at is studded with repeated attempts of suppressing the Jama’at. In the recent past, in 1974 the opponents tried their utmost to blot out the community, but as always, they were unsuccessful and were disgraced. Then in 1984 an all-out infamous ordinance was enforced against the Jama‟at and the opponents tried their level best to obstruct the advancement of Ahmadiyyat. But what happened?
Our Almighty, Powerful God blew to bits those who were impudent in their presumption to blot out Ahmadiyyat. Where is that tyrant who said that his power was very great and that he would ensure that the Ahmadis ended up with a beggar‘s bowl in their hands? Where is that despot, who, in the footsteps of the Pharaoh, had declared that he would erase the cancer of Ahmadiyyat? Observe, our God has obliterated these enemies of Islam from the face of the earth. One was seen on the hangman‘s scaffold and the other’s body was blown out into the skies, reduced to a heap of burnt dust and dispersed in the desert.
This magnificent and perfect spiritual system which has been vouchsafed to the world in the form of Khilafat-e-Ahmadiyya is no ordinary miracle. The Ahmadiyya Khilafat has successfully emerged as the leading force among Muslims to follow the precepts set by the Holy Prophet of Islam(saw). It is engaged in establishing faith in the Unity of God all over the world. It teaches the Holy Qur‘an, and promotes knowledge and wisdom. It is exerting to bring uniformity among the people belonging to various races and ethnic groups. It is promoting moral reformation of individuals, teaching mutual love and respect. Above all, the Ahmadiyya Khilafat is helping man to establish a living and loving relationship with God.
This is indeed a great bounty and favour of Allah the Almighty upon all of us that we have been able to witness and experience this golden period of the second phase of Khilafat-e-Rashida. It is our good fortune that we are present at this historic juncture when this Khilafat-e-Rashida has entered into its second century. Our hearts are filled with emotions and our whole being is in a state of total submission to Allah the Almighty, with sincere thanks and gratitude. One century laden with bounties of Allah has passed and we have entered into the second century with shining prospects of our ultimate victory knocking at the door. The whole of the last century of Khilafat-e-Rashida Ahmadiyya, rather each year of it, perhaps it is more true to say that each day of each year stands witness to the fact that Allah the Almighty continued to bestow His sublime blessings upon us.
It is Allah‘s sheer Grace and Mercy that we are basking in the sunshine of Khilafat. I tell you honestly that words cannot capture and express how fortunate we are to live and experience this blessed era of Khilafat-e-Rashida Ahmadiyya.
It is time for us to submit most sincerely to Allah. It is time to remind ourselves of the great pledge that all of us made on the historic day of 27th May 2008, when the whole world of Ahmadiyyat stood up at the call of their beloved Imam. It was a spectacle of a lifetime!
We all made a sincere pledge; we all entered into a solemn covenant, with flowing tears and throbbing hearts. Each and every word of this promise should remain permanently imprinted on our hearts and minds. Let us remember that day today and take stock of ourselves. Let us set up an exemplary standard of complete fidelity and faithfulness; of total submission and obedience; of dedicated sacrifices in the cause of Khilafat.
Let us not become slack and deficient in any way in discharging our responsibilities, so that the great bounty of Khilafat-e-Rashida granted to us should continue to remain with us and that we remain dedicatedly attached to it for ever and ever.
May Allah enable us to do so. Aameen