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The Battle ofBadr

Many people don't know that the Battle of Badr was mentioned in the Bible:

Isaiah 21:13-17
"" The burden upon Arabia. In the forest in Arabia shall ye lodge, O ye travelling companies of Dedanim.. The inhabitants of the land of Tema brought water to him that was thirsty, they prevented with their bread him that fled.. For they fled from the swords, from the drawn sword, and from the bent bow, and from the grievousness of war.. For thus hath the LORD said unto me, Within a year, according to the years of an hireling, and all the glory of Kedar shall fail:. And the residue of the number of archers, the mighty men of the children of Kedar, shall be diminished: for the LORD God of Israel hath spoken it.""

The Great Battle of Badr took place on the seventeenth ofRamadan, two years after the Hijra. This was the first battlethat the believers ever engaged in with the disbelievers, and itis, by far, the most famous and most renown, becuase of theseveral extraordinary events that occured during it. Rasoolullah(saws) had encouraged the Muslims to oppose the Quraish caravanwhich was returning to Mecca from Sham.

The Muslims went out with314 and some soldiers not intending to meet a caravan of about 40men, not intending to fight but only to overpower them. Thecaravan escaped, but Abu Sufyan had already sent word to Quraishto come and protect it. The Quraish marched with enormous army of950 men, six hundred wearing shields, 100 horses, and 700camels, and luxurious provisions to last for several days. Thedisbelievers wanted to make this a victory that would put fearinto the hearts of all the Arabs.

They wanted to crush theMuslims once and for all and the odds were overwhelmingly intheir favor. Imagine that the believers with their small army(including only 2 horses), going out with the intent of meeting amere 40 unarmed man and instead meeting a well- prepared army of*3 times* their size.... Rasoolullah (saws) could have easilyordered the believers to fight and they wouldn't have hesitatedto comply, but, he (saws) wanted to emphasize to his followersthat they should fight out of conviction and iman and to teach usa lesson in the process.

He gathered his followers to conductshura (consultation). Many of the muhajireen ( the Muslims whoemigrated from Mecca to Medinah) spoke up, using the mosteloquent of words to describe their dedication. But there was oneof the sahabah whom all the others envied for his statement toRasoolullah (saws). He, Miqdad ibn al Aswad, rose up in front ofthe crowd and said, 'Ya Rasoolullah! We will not say to you likeBani Israel said to Musa, 'Go you and your Lord and fight, we arehere sitting (waiting).' (surat al maa'idah). Go by Allah'sblessing and we are with you!" And so Rasoolullah (saws) wasvery pleased, but in his greeat wisdom, he waited silently, andsome among the Muslims knew what he intended.

So far only themuhajiroon had given their consent, but it was the Ansar (theMuslims who lived in Medinah and welcomed the Muslims into theircity) who had the most to loose in this stake and it was not apart of the pledge (that Rasoolullah had taken from the Ansar at‘Aqabah) for the Ansar to fight with the Muslims in foreignterritory. So, the great leader of the Ansar, Sa'd ibn Mu'adspoke up, "Ya Rasoolullah! Maybe you mean us."Rasoolullah (saws) responded in the affirmative.

Sa'd proceededto give a beautiful speech in which he said, among many things:"O Messenger of Allah, we have believed in you and webelieve that you are saying the truth. We give you, based onthat, our covenant to listen to and obey you.....By Allah, theOne Who sent you with the truth, if you were to enter the sea, wewould rush into it with you and not one of us would staybehind...May Allah show you in our actions what will satisfy youreyes. So march with us, putting our trust in Allah'sblessings." Rasoolullah (saws) was very pleased by this andsaid, “Forward and be of cheer, for Allah has promised meone of the two (the caravan or the battle), and by Allah, it isas if I now saw the enemy lying prostrate.” The Muslimsmarched forward and encamped at the nearest spring of Badr(closest to Medinah, which is north of Mecca).

One of thecompanions, Al-Hubab ibn Mundhir, asked Rasoolullah (saws),“ Has Allah inspired you to choose this very spot or is itstratagem of war and the product of consultation?”Rasoolullah (saws) said, “It is the product of stratagem ofwar and consultation.” So Al-Hubab suggested that theMuslims encamp further south on the nearest water well, make abasin of water for themselves, and destroy the other wells tothereby restrict to Quraish’s access to the water.Rasoolullah (saws) approved of his plan and carried it out.[*]Then, Sa’d ibn Mu’adh suggested that a trellis or hutbe built for Rasoolullah (saws) as a protection for him and toserve as a headquarters for the army.

Rasoolullah (saws) and AbuBakr stayed in the hut while Sa’d ibn Mu’adh and agroup of his men guarded it. Rasoolullah (saws) spent the wholenigh preceeding the battle in prayer and supplication evn thoughthe (saws) knew that Allah (swt) had promised him victory. It wasout of his (saws) love for and worship and submission to Allah(swt) that he did this. And it was said that this is the highestform of ‘ibadah knowns as “‘ain al yaqeen”, astate of being completely dependant and submissive to Allah(swt), which distinguished him (in superiority) from Abu Bakr Assiddiq (ra) who only had “ ‘ilm al yaqeen”, thecertainty of the promise.

Unusally, that same night, the nightwhen tensions were mounting for one of the biggest events inhistory, the night before the battle that would signify theprogress or defeat of Islam, instead of being nervous, worriedand unable to sleep, the Muslim army enjoyed a sound andrefreshing sleep. That night was the night of the 17th ofRamadan, the year 2 A.H. This was a Divine favor which Allah(swt) mentioned in the Quran: “(Remember) when He coveredyou with a slumber as a security from Him, and He caused rain todescend on you from the sky, to clean you thereby and to removefrom you the Rijz (whispering, evil suggestions, etc.) of Satan,and to strengthen your hearts, and make your feet firmthereby.” [8:11] The seond favor from Allah (swt) mentionedin this verse is the rain that Allah (swt) sent upon thebelievers that very night.

The place where the Muslims were toencamp was made of sandy ground which was hard to walk on becuaseone’s feet could easily sink in it. Allah (swt) sent therain to make the ground firm under their feet and sent the sleepto make their hearts firm. The next morning, Rasoolullah (saw)was still asleep when Quraish was very closely approaching. AbuBakr (ra) was very hesitant to wake the noble Messenger (saws),but was forced to do so becuase Quraish were approahcing quickly.The Muslims were arranged in ranks. When the two partiesappoached closer and were visible to each other, Rasoolullah(saws) began supplicating, “O Allah! The conceited andhaughty Quraishites are already here and defying You and andbelying Your Messenger.

O Allah! I m waiting for Your victorywhich You have promised me. I beseech You Allah to defeatthem.” He (saws) then gave strict orders that his men wouldnot start fighting until he gave them his final word. Herecommended that they use their arrows sparingly [1] and neverresort to swords unless the enemies came too close. [2] TheQuraish were haught and arrogant and confident in their superiornumber, weapons, and provisions but it is Allah (swt) who woulddecide the matter: “(O disbelievers) if you ask for ajudgement, now has the judgement come unto you and if you cease(to do wrong) , it will be better for you, and If you return (tothe attack), so shall we return, and your forces will be of noavail to you, however numerous it be, and verily, Allah is withthe believers.” [8:19] The battle began with a confronationbetween three men from each side:

-- Hamza (Rasoolullah’s uncle)vs.‘Utbah ibn Rabi’a
-- Ali (Rasoolullah’s cousin)vs.Al-Waleed ibn ‘Utbah
-- ‘Ubaidah ibn al Harith vs. Shaybah ibn Rabi’a

In the former two cases, Hamza and Ali killed their opponents,but ‘Ubaidah (despite killing his opponent) was severelywounded and died about four or five days later. The fightingintensified, and many more duels broke out. In the midst of allof this, Rasoolullah (saws) continued to supplicate his Lord. He(saws) said, “O Allah! Should this group (of Muslims) bedefeated today, You will no longer be worshipped.”Abu Bakrwitnessed this incessant supplication so He said to Rasoolullah(saws), “O Rasoolullah, you have cried out enough to yourLord. He will surely fulfill what He has promised you.”

Immediate was the response of Allah (swt), Who sent down angelsfrom the heavens for the help and assistance of Rasoolullah (saw)and his companions. The Quran marks this miraculous occurance:“I will help you with a thousand of the angels each behindthe other (following one another) in succession.” Quran[8:9] Rasoolullah (saws), in his hut, dozed off a little and thenraised his head joyfully crying and said, “O Abu Bakr! gladtidings are there for you.


Allah’s victory has approached.By Allah, I can see Jibreel on his mare in the thick of asandstorm.” Then he came out of the hut and exclaimed:“sayuhzamul jam’u wa yuwwalloonad-dubur” Quran[54:45] (Their multitude will be put to flight, and they willshow their backs.) This is in fact one of the miracles of theQuran becuase this verse was revealed in Mecca before any ofthese events at Badr had taken place. Omar (ra), upon hearingRasoolullah (saws) proclaim this verse on this occasion said,“When this verse was first revealed, I asked Rasoolullahwhat it means. What multitude? What deafeat? And Rasoolullah(saws) didn’t answer me. But when I saw him recite it onthat occasion, I then understood.” Then Rasoolullah (saws)took a handful of dust and cast it at the enemy and said :Confusion seize their faces!” As he flung the dust, aviolent sandstorm blew like furnace blast into the eyes of theenemy.

About this, Allah says: “And you (i.e. Muhammad-saws) threw not when you did throw, but Allah threw.”[8:17] It was at this point that Rasoolullah (saws) gave ordersto launch a full counter-attack. He incited the believersreciting the following verse: “And be quick for forgivenessfrom your Lord, and for Paradise as wide as are the heavens andearth.” [3:133] The spirit of the Muslims was at it peak andthey fought with the untmost courage and bravery severly woundingthe Quraish army, killing many of their men and instilling fearin their hearts. The Muslims did not know that Allah’s helpwas about to descend upon them.

They only knew the odds that wereapparent to both sides: 100 against 300, 700 camels against 70camels, 100 horses against 2, enourmous provisions against none,an intent and preparation for war against an unprepared group ofbelievers. Still, despite all odds, they had trust in Allah (swt)and His Messenger and they were willing and even hoping to givetheir lives of this dunya for the ever-lasting abode of Jannah.Because of their devotion Allah (swt) sent His help and victory.

In addition to sending down angels, Allah (swt) also broughtanother miraculous occurence to ensure the Muslim victory. Allahsays: "“(And remember) When Allah showed them to you(Muhammad) as few in your dream, if He had shown them to you asmany, you would have surely have disputed in making a decision.But Allah saved (you). Certainly, He is the
AllKnower of what is in the breasts.'” [8:43] And indeed,Allah (swt) did fulfill His promise: “And (remember) whenyou met (the army of the disbelievers on the Day of the battle ofBadr), He showed them to you as few in your eyes and He made youappear as few in their eyes, so that Allah might accomplish amatter already ordained (in His Knowledge), and to Allah returnall matters (for decision).” [8:44] Many of the disbelieverswere killed in this battle, the most noteworthy of which was AbuJahl, the archenemy of Islam.

When Rasoolullah (saws) set out tolook at his corpse, he (saws) said, "“This is thePharaoh of this nation."” And so the Muslims defeatedthe disbelievers in a humiliating defeat by the Help of Allah(swt). Indeed Allah, again, fulfilled His promise,"“Their multitude will be put to flight, and they willshow their backs”" [54:45] The disbelievers, with alltheir might, turned their backs and ran away from the Muslims indisgrace and utter humiliation. Allahu Akbar wa lillah al Hamd.