Bismillahir rahmanir raheem
After challenging his father and calling his people to Islam, Ibrahim (as) destroyed the idols while the people were away from the city at a festival. He destroyed all but one of them, the biggest, and hung the axe around its neck. When the people came back and accused Ibrahim (as) of destroying the idols, he lay the blame on the biggest who had the axe. Briefly, the people realised that their belief in the idols were deluded however, their arrogance and stubbornness prevented them from acknowledging this fully.
As a result they decided to avenge their idols by building a large fire to burn Ibrahim (as). The fire was so large, birds flying over it would drop down dead in the fire because the heat was overwhelming. A catapult had to be made to launch Ibrahim (as) into it because no human could withstand the heat to push him in. They bound his hands and feet so he couldn’t escape his punishment, strapped him to the catapult and launched.
Whilst he was flying through the air, getting closer and closer to the fire, the angel Jibril (as) came to him and asked “O Ibrahim! Do you wish for anything right now?” And Ibrahim (as) replied “No, nothing from you.”
Let us reflect on this. Ibrahim (as) could have asked for the help of Jibril (as) but he had so much faith in Allah swt, he needed no help except His. There would have been no sin on Ibrahim (as) to ask Jibril (as) for help but his imaan was strong and firm in the belief of Allah swt. How many times in our life have we ran to people seeking help without first seeking the help of Allah swt? We as an Ummah need to realise that Allah swt is the ultimate source of help. Unless He swt wills, even the people that we seek out for help cannot help us subhanAllah.
While Ibrahim (as) was still in the air, Allah swt commanded:
“O fire, be coolness and safety for Ibrahim.” [Surat al- Anbiya]
The wording here is often overlooked. Allah swt did not command the fire to be cold as that would have burnt Ibrahim (as) as well, instead he told the fire to be coolness and security. Not only did the fire not burn Ibrahim (as), it only burned the ropes that he was bound by. When Ibrahim (as) climbed out of the pit, the people were amazed that he survived without a scratch. After falling from such a height, we would expect something to be broken. But subhanAllah, Allah swt is the Protector and kept Ibrahim (as) from all harm, Allahu Akbar!
From this moment in the life of Ibrahim (as) we learn the importance of trusting in Allah swt even in the most difficult of times. The Prophet’s (as) knew this and relied on Allah swt throughout the delivery of their message. Throughout the whole of this experience, Ibrahim (as) had no support from his community and least of all from his father. If the father of Ibrahim (as) did not try to save his son from the fire, we should not expect our parents to shelter us from the wrath of those who do not try to understand or support our practice of Islam. It’s a hard message to take but suhanAllah, when you put your trust in Allah swt, you don’t need mankind to validate your beliefs.
Next we’ll be exploring the stories of Ibrahim (as) and his son Ismail (as). What lessons did you take away from Ibrahim (as) and the fire? Use #MyAnbiya to connect with me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.