إِنَّ أَوْلَى النَّاسِ بِالاْنْبِيَاءِ أَعْلَمُهُمْ بِمَا جَاؤُوا بِهِ، ثُمَّ تَلاَ (عليه السلام): (إِنَّ أَوْلَى النَّاسِ بِإِبْرَاهِيمَ لَلَّذِينَ اتَّبَعُوهُ وَهذَا النَّبِيُّ وَالَّذِينَ آمَنُوا واللهُ وَليُّ الْمُؤْمِنينَ)۔
The persons most attached to the prophets are those who know most what the prophets have brought. Then Amir al-mu'minin recited the verse: Verily, of men the nearest to Abraham are surely those who followed him and this (Our) Prophet (Muhammad) and those who believe (Qur'an, 3:68).
— Imam Ali a.s.
(Nahj al-Balagha — Peak of Eloquence: Hadith #96)
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful. All praise is due to Allah, the Lord of all the worlds. May peace and blessings be upon our beloved Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ), his pure progeny, and his noble companions.
In this profound Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ), he highlights the importance of knowledge and understanding in relation to the teachings of the prophets. He states that those who are most closely connected to the prophets are the ones who possess the greatest knowledge of what the prophets have brought to humanity.
Let us delve deeper into the words of this Hadith to gain a better understanding. The word (awla) "أَوْلَى" refers to those who are closest or most attached to someone. In this context, it signifies those who have a deep connection and understanding of the teachings of the prophets. The word (annas) "النَّاسِ" refers to people or individuals. Therefore, Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) is emphasizing that the individuals who possess the most knowledge of the prophets' teachings are the ones who are closest to them.
Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) further supports his statement by reciting a verse from the Quran, specifically Surah Al-Imran, verse 68:
Verily, of men the nearest to Abraham are surely those who followed him and this (Our) Prophet (Muhammad) and those who believe.
This verse highlights the significance of following the path of Prophet Abraham (Ibrahim) and Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ), as well as having faith in Allah. It emphasizes that those who are closest to Prophet Abraham are those who followed his teachings and the teachings of Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ), along with having firm belief in Allah.
To understand the wise message of this Hadith, we must reflect on the importance of knowledge and understanding in Islam. The prophets were chosen by Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) to guide humanity towards righteousness and to deliver His message. They brought divine knowledge and wisdom to enlighten the hearts and minds of people. Therefore, it is crucial for Muslims to seek knowledge and strive to understand the teachings of the prophets in order to be truly connected to them.
The knowledge of the prophets encompasses various aspects, including the understanding of the Quran, the implementation of their teachings in daily life, and the embodiment of their noble qualities. By acquiring this knowledge, Muslims can develop a deep connection with the prophets and truly follow in their footsteps.
The consequences of being closely attached to the prophets and possessing knowledge of their teachings are immense. It leads to spiritual growth, moral development, and a strong connection with Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ). It enables individuals to navigate through the challenges of life with wisdom and guidance, and to make decisions that are in line with the teachings of Islam. Moreover, it empowers Muslims to be ambassadors of peace, justice, and compassion in society, just as the prophets were.
In conclusion, this Hadith of Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) emphasizes the importance of knowledge and understanding in relation to the teachings of the prophets. It highlights that those who possess the greatest knowledge of what the prophets have brought are the ones who are closest to them. By reciting a verse from the Quran, Imam Ali (عَلَيْهِ ٱلسَّلَامُ) further reinforces this message. Muslims are encouraged to seek knowledge, understand the teachings of the prophets, and implement them in their lives. This will enable them to develop a deep connection with the prophets and strive towards righteousness and closeness to Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ). May Allah (سُبْحَانَهُ وَتَعَالَىٰ) grant us the ability to acquire knowledge and understanding, and to be among those who are closest to the prophets.
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