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The example of Muslims, Jews, and Christians

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This Hadith is setting an example for the people to whom Moses was sent to abide by the commands and prohibitions for the rest of their lives until Allah sent Jesus, peace be upon him, who commanded them to follow him but they refused and denied the legislation with which he came.

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Abu Musa, may Allah be pleased with him, narrated that the Prophet, peace be upon him, said: «The example of Muslims, Jews and Christians is like the example of a man who employed laborers to work for him from morning till night for specific wages. They worked till midday and then said: 'We do not need your money which you have fixed for us and let whatever we have done be annulled.' The man said to them: 'Do not quit the work, but complete the rest of it and take your full wages.' But they refused and went away. The man employed another batch after them and said to them: 'Complete the rest of the day and yours will be the wages I had fixed for the first batch.' So, they worked till the time of `Asr Salah. Then they said: "Let what we have done be annulled and keep the wages you have promised us for yourself.' The man said to them: 'Complete the rest of the work, as only a little of the day remains,' but they refused. Thereafter he employed another batch to work for the rest of the day and they worked for the rest of the day till the sunset, and they received the wages of the two former batches. So, that was the example of those people (Muslims) and the example of this light (guidance) which they have accepted willingly» (1).

 

In another narration: Ibn `Umar, may Allah be pleased with him, narrated that the Prophet, peace be upon him, said: «Your example and the example of the people of the two Scriptures (i.e., Jews and Christians) is like the example of a man who employed some laborers and asked them: 'Who will work for me from morning till midday for one Qirat?' The Jews accepted and carried out the work. He then asked, Who will work for me from midday up to the `Asr Salah for one Qirat?' The Christians accepted and fulfilled the work. He then said: 'Who will work for me from the `Asr till sunset for two Qirats?' You, Muslims have accepted the offer. The Jews and the Christians got angry and said: 'Why should we work more and get lesser wages?' (Allah) said: 'Have I withheld part of your right?' They replied in the negative. He said: 'It is My Blessing, I bestow upon whomever I wish» (2)

 

 

 

Explanation of vocabularies (3)

«The People of the Two Scriptures» are the Jews and the Christians.

«Like a man» i.e., your example with your prophet is like a man, and the example of the people of the Two Scriptures with their Prophets is like a man who hired... So, the example is set for the nation and their conditions with their Prophet.

«They received the wages of the two former batches» because when their work was annulled and their wages were not received, and Muslims completed the work for the rest of the day for two Qirats, it is as if they have taken the two Qirats from the first batch without giving the first batch anything. Therefore, Allah, Glory be to Him, says:

{يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا اتَّقُوا اللَّـهَ وَآمِنُوا بِرَ‌سُولِهِ يُؤْتِكُمْ كِفْلَيْنِ مِن رَّ‌حْمَتِهِ وَيَجْعَل لَّكُمْ نُورً‌ا تَمْشُونَ بِهِ وَيَغْفِرْ‌ لَكُمْ ۚ وَاللَّـهُ غَفُورٌ‌ رَّ‌حِيمٌ . لِّئَلَّا يَعْلَمَ أَهْلُ الْكِتَابِ أَلَّا يَقْدِرُ‌ونَ عَلَىٰ شَيْءٍ مِّن فَضْلِ اللَّـهِ ۙ وَأَنَّ الْفَضْلَ بِيَدِ اللَّـهِ يُؤْتِيهِ مَن يَشَاءُ ۚ وَاللَّـهُ ذُو الْفَضْلِ الْعَظِيمِ}

‘Translation’ {O you who believe [in Mûsâ (Moses) (i.e. Jews) and 'Isâ (Jesus) (i.e. Christians)]! Fear Allâh, and believe in His Messenger (Muhammad peace be upon him), He will give you a double portion of His Mercy, and He will give you a light by which you shall walk (straight). And He will forgive you. And Allâh is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful. * So that the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians) may know that they have no power whatsoever over the Grace of Allâh, and that (His) Grace is (entirely) in His Hand to bestow it on whomsoever He wills. And Allâh is the Owner of Great Bounty." [Al Hadid:28,29].

Therefore, Jews and Christians admitted that they were not oppressed and they have received their full wages.

«From morning till midday» i.e., from dawn to sunrise.

«Qirat» is part of Dianr.

 

Explanation of the Hadith:

It was said in `Umdat Al Qary: This Hadith is setting an example for the people to whom Moses was sent to abide by the commands and prohibitions for the rest of their lives until Allah sent Jesus, peace be upon him, who commanded them to follow him but they refused and denied the legislation with which he came. Other people have acted according to the legislation of Jesus, Peace be upon him, who commanded them to abide by these commands and prohibitions for the rest of their lives. So, they worked until Allah sent Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, who called them to abide by the commands and prohibitions which he came with but they refused and disobeyed. Thereupon, Allah, may He be Exalted, brought Muslims who have abided by these commands and prohibitions and will complete until the onset of the Hour, therefore they shall have the reward of obeying Allah for the rest of time i.e., that is the completion of world for the rest of daytime for which the first batch was hired.

 

As for the Hadith of Ibn `Umar, the Prophet estimated for them the period of the Jews' actions for which they shall receive reward until Allah, may He be Exalted, abrogated their Shari`ah by sending Jesus, peace be upon him. He said upon sending Jesus, Peace be upon him: Who would work during the duration of this Shari`ah and he shall receive the reward of a Qirat? The Christians worked until Allah, may He be Exalted, abrogated their Shari`ah with Muhammad, peace be upon him. Then He said out of His Bounty: Who would work for the rest of the day until night and he shall receive the reward of two Qirats? Muslims said: We shall work until the end of time. So, the Jews who worked until the coming of Jesus, believed in him, and abided by his Shari`ah shall receive double reward. Likewise the Christians who believed in Muhammad, peace be upon him, as was reported in the Hadith which reads: And a man who has believed in his Prophet then believed in me, such a person shall have a double reward. (4)

 

If you say that the Hadith of Abu Musa denoted that the two teams did not take any reward, whereas the Hadith of Ibn `Umar denoted that each one of them has taken one Qirat; I say: That is for the people who died before the abrogation of this ruling, but those who distorted or disbelieved the prophet whom was sent after the death of their own prophet shall take nothing. (5)

 

Lessons gained from the Hadith:

1- The Hadith is a proof for the Sunnis that the reward of Allah is out of His Bounty.

2- Giving preference to this nation and doubling its reward despite their little work. It also shows that this nation is the best of all and the most perfect because of its belief in its Messenger, peace be upon him, and in all Prophets before him. It is also the best nation because Allah favored them by sending them the Prophet, peace be upon him, in addition to the perfection of his Shari`ah, and their testimony over other nations before it..etc.

3- A Muslim should feel the greatness of Allah's Favor upon Muslims and the blessings which He gave us: We work little, but take a huge reward, so thanks due to Allah.

4- It was mentioned in the Hadith that whoever is hired to do some work then worked without completing it shall not deserve the wage.

5- In his saying: «as only a little of the day remains», it indicates the short period of Muslims in life in compare to the durations of other nations.

6- The permissibility of setting a wage for a certain work for a fixed period of time.

 

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(1) Sahih Al Bukhari No. (2271).

(2) Sahih Al Bukhari No. (2268).

(3) See: Fathul-Bary of Ibn Hajar 4/ 446.

(4) Reported by At-Tirmidhy 4/ 420, and Al Albany graded it as authentic. Sahih Sunan At-Tirmidhy 116/3.

(5) See: `Umdat Al Qary 5/ 54.


Source: Allsunnah Net

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