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BATTLES OF THE PROPHET SERIES

(More on the Battle of Khaibar by ymsite.com)

 THE  BATTLE OF KHAIBAR



Excerpt from the book "The Battles Of The Prophet"
by Ibn Kathir as translated by Wa'il Abdul-Mut'aal Shihab

The author, Abu Al-Fida Imad Ad-Din Isma'il bin Umar bin Kathir Al-Qurashi Al-Busrawi was born in 1301 in Busra, Syria. Considered as one of the great Muslim scholars, Ibn Kathir wrote the famous Tafsir al-Quran al-Adhim, now popularly known as Tafsir Ibn Kathir. His other popular works include the 14-volume Al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah (The Beginning and the End) - considered one of the most authoritative sources on Islamic history, and Al-Sira An-Nabawiyyah (Life of the Prophet.) The book Battles of the Prophet is a part of Al-Bidayah wan-Nihayah. Ibn Kathir died in the year 774 AH (1373 CE).

 

According to ' Abdur-Ruhman Ibn Laylah, the following Qur'anic verse

And He rewarded them with a speedy victory,

(Al-Fath: 18)

 

refers to Khaibar. Some scholars of Siyrah say that the battle of Khaibar took place in the 6th year of Hijra but according to the majority of scholars it took place in the 7th year of Hijra.

Ibn Ishaq said when the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) marched from Madinah to Khaibar he went by way of Isr, and a mosque was built for him there; then by way of Al‑ Sahbih. Then he went forward with the army until he hatted in a valley called Al-Raji', halting between the men of Khaibar and Ghatafan so as to prevent

the latter reinforcing Khaibar, for they were on their side against the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). When Ghatafan heard about the Messenger's attack on Khaibar they gathered together and marched out to help the Jews against him; but after a day's journey, hearing a rumor about their property and families, they thought that they had been attacked during their absence, so they went back on their tracks and left the way to Khaibar open to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).

In his Sahih, Al-Bukhari narrated the following narrations that shed light on the battle of Khaibar:

Suwaid Ibn An-Nu' man narrated, "I went out in the company of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) in the year of Khaibar, and when we reached As-Sahba' which is the lower part of Khaibar, the Prophet offered the 'Asr Prayer and then asked the people to collect the journey food. Nothing was brought but Sawiq, which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) ordered to be moistened with water, and then he ate it and we also ate it. Then he got up to offer the Maghrib Prayer. He washed his mouth, and we too washed our mouths, and then he offered the Prayer without repeating his ablution."

Salama Ibn Al-Akwa' said, "We went out to Khaibar in the company of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). While we were proceeding at night, a man from the group said to 'Amir, '0 'Amir! Won't you let us hear your poetry?' 'Amir was a poet, so he got down and started reciting for the people poetry that kept pace with the camels' footsteps, saying:

 "0 Allah! Without You we would not have been guided On the right path. Neither would we have given in charity, nor would we have prayed. So please forgive us, what we have committed (i.e., our defects); let all of us be sacrificed for Your Cause and send Sakinah (i.e., calmness) upon us to make our feet firm when we meet our enemy, and if they will call us towards an unjust thing, we will refuse. The infidels have made a hue and cry to ask others' help against us.'

 The Prophet on that, asked, `Who is that (camel) driver (reciting poetry)?' The people said, 'He is Amir Ibn Al-Akwa' .' Then the Prophet said,

`May Allah. bestow His Mercy on him.'

 A man amongst the people said, '0 Allah's Prophet! Has (martyrdom) been granted to him'? Would that you let us enjoy his company longer.' Then we reached and besieged Khaibar until we were afflicted with severe hunger. Then Allah helped the Muslims conquer it (i.e., Khaibar). In the evening of the day of the conquest of the city, the Muslims made huge fires. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, 'What are these fires? For cooking what, are you making the fire?' The people replied, `(For cooking) meat.' He asked, 'What kind of meat?' They (i.e., people) said,`The meat of donkeys.' The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said,

 `Throw away the meat and break the pots!'

Some man said, '0 Allah's Messenger! Shall we throw away the meat and wash the pots instead?' He said,

'(Yes, you can do) that too.'

 So when the army files were arranged in rows (for the clash), 'Amir's sword was short and he aimed at the leg of a Jew to strike it, but the sharp blade of the sword returned to him and injured his own knee, and that caused him to die. When they returned from the battle, Allah's Messenger saw me (in a sad mood). He took my hand and said, 'What is bothering you?' I replied, let my father and mother be sacrificed for you! The people say that the deeds of 'Amir are lost.' The Prophet said,

`Whoever says this, is mistaken, for Amir has got a double reward.'

The Prophet raised two fingers and added,

`He (i.e., `Amir) was a persevering struggler in the Cause of Allah and there are few 'Arabs who achieved the like of (good deeds) 'Amir had done. '"

 Anas narrated that Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) reached Khaibar at night and it was his habit that whenever he reached the enemy at night, he did not attack them until it was morning. When it was morning, the Jews came out with their spades and baskets, and when they saw him (i.e., the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), they said, "Muhammad! By Allah, Muhammad and his army!" The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said,

"Khaibar is destroyed, for whenever we approach a (hostile) nation (to fight), then evil will be the morning for those who have been warned."

 Anas Ibn Malik also said, "We reached Khaibar early in the morning and the inhabitants of Khaibar came out carrying their spades, and when they saw the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) they said, 'Muhammad! By Allah, Muhammad and his army!' The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said,

Allahu-Akbar! Khaibar is destroyed, for whenever we approach a (hostile) nation (to fight) then evil will be the morning for those who have been warned. '

 We then got the meat of donkeys (and intended to eat it), but an announcement was made by the announcer of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), 'Allah and His Messenger forbid you to eat the meat of donkeys as it is an impure thing.'"

 Moreover, Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) offered the Fajr Prayer near Khaibar when it was still dark and then said,

"Allahu-Akbar (Allah is the Greatest)! Khaibar is destroyed, for whenever we approach a (hostile) nation (to fight), then evil will be the morning for those who have been warned. "

Then the inhabitants of Khaibar came out running on the roads. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had their warriors killed, their offspring and woman taken as captives. Safiyah was amongst the captives. She first came in the share of Dahya Alkalbi but later on she belonged to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) made her manumission as her Mahr (dowry).

Salama Ibn Al-Akwa' narrated, "' Ali remained behind the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) during the Ghazwah of Khaibar as he was suffering from eye trouble. He then said, '(How can) I remain behind the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him),' and followed him. So when he slept on the night of the conquest of Khaibar, the Prophet said,

I will give the flag tomorrow, or tomorrow the flag will be taken by a man who is loved by Allah and His Messenger, and (Khaibar) will be conquered through him (with Allah's help).

While every one of us was hopeful to have the flag, it was said, 'Here is Ali', and the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) gave him the flag and Khaibar was conquered through him (with Allah's Help)."

Sahl Ibn Sa' d said that on the day of Khaibar Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said,

"Tomorrow I will give this flag to a man through whose hands Allah will give us victory. He loves Allah and His Messenger, and he is loved by Allah and His Messenger."

The people remained that night, wondering as to whom would be given it. In the morning, the people went to Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and everyone of them was hopeful to receive it (i.e., the flag). The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, "Where is ' All Ibn Abi Talib?" It was said, "He is suffering from eye trouble 0 Allah's Messenger." He said, "Send for him." ' Ali was brought and Allah's Messenger spat in his eye and invoked good upon him. So ' Ali was cured as if he never had any trouble. Then the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) gave him the flag. ' Ali said "0 Allah's Messenger! I will fight with them until they become like us." Allah's Messenger said,

"Proceed and do not hurry. When you enter their territory, call them to embrace Islam and inform them of Allah's Rights which they should observe, for by Allah, even if a single man is led on the right path (of Islam) by Allah through you, then that will be better for you than the red camels."

Yazid Ibn Abi ' Ubaid said I saw the trace of a wound in Salama's leg. I said to him, "0 Abu Muslim! What is this wound?" He said, "This was inflicted on me on the day of Khaibar and the people said, 'Salama has been wounded.' Then I went to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and he puffed his saliva in it (i.e. the wound) thrice, and since then I have not had any pain in it until this hour."

Sahl (may Allah be pleased with him) said that during one of his Ghazawat, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) encountered the pagans, and the two armies fought, and then each of them returned to their army camps. Amongst the (army of the) Muslims there was a man who would follow every pagan separated from the army and strike him with his sword. It was said, "0 Allah's Messenger! None has fought so satisfactorily as so‑ and-so (namely, that brave Muslim)." The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, "He is from the dwellers of the Hell-Fire." The people said, "Who amongst us will be of the dwellers of Paradise if this (man) is from the dwellers of the Hell-Fire?" Then a man from amongst the people said, "I will follow him and accompany him in his fast and slow movements." The (brave) man got wounded, and wanting to die at once, he put the handle of his sword on the ground and its tip in between his breasts, and then threw himself over it, committing suicide. Then the man (who had watched the deceased) returned to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and said, "I testify that you are Messenger of Allah." The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, "What is this?" The man told him the whole story. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said,

"A man may do what may seem to the people as the deeds of the dwellers of Paradise, but he is of the dwellers of the Hell-Fire and a man may do what may seem to the people as the deeds of the dwellers of the Hell-Fire, but he is from the dwellers of Paradise."

Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that we witnessed (the battle of) Khaibar. Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said about one of those who were with him and who claimed to be a Muslim, "This (man) is from the dwellers of the Hell-Fire." When the battle started, that fellow fought so violently and bravely that he received plenty of wounds. Some of the people were about to doubt (the Prophet's statement), but the man, feeling the pain of his wounds, put his hand into his quiver and took out of it, some arrows with which he slaughtered himself (i.e., committed suicide). Then some men amongst the Muslims came hurriedly and said, "0 Allah's Messenger! Allah has made your statement true so‑ and-so has committed suicide." The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said,

"0 so-and-so! Get up and make an announcement that none but a believer will enter Paradise and that Allah may support the religion with an unchaste (evil) wicked man."

The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), as Ibn Ishaq narrated, seized the property piece by piece and conquered the forts one by one as he came to them. The first to fall was of Na'im; then Al-Qamus the fort of Banu Al-Huqayq. The Messenger took captives from them among whom was Safiyah, daughter of Huyayy Ibn Aktab who had been the wife of Kinana Ibn Al-Rabi' Ibn Al-Huqayq, and two cousins of hers. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) chose Safiyah for himself.

According to Ibn Ishaq, the tribe of Sahm of Aslam came to the Messenger and complained that they had fought and got nothing and found nothing with the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) which he could give them. He said,

"0 God, you know their condition and that they have no strength, and I have nothing to give them, so conquer for them the wealthiest of the enemy's forts with the richest food."

The following day, Allah conquered the fort of b Ibn Mu' adh which contained the richest food in Khaibar.

When the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had conquered some of their forts and got possession of some of their property he came to their two forts Al-Watih and Al‑ Sulaim, the last to be taken, and the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) besieged them for some ten nights.

 

The Prophet Marries Safiyah Bint Huyayy

Anas (may Allah be pleased with him) reported that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) offered the Fajr Prayer near Khaibar when it was still dark and then said,

"Allahu-Akbar (Allah is the Greatest)! Khaibar is destroyed, for whenever we approach a (hostile) nation (to fight), then evil will be the morning for those who have been warned."

Then the inhabitants of Khaibar came out running on the roads. The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had their warriors killed, their offspring and woman taken as captives. Safiyah was amongst the captives. She first came in the share of Dahya Alkalbi but later on she belonged to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) made her manumission as her Mahr.

Anas Ibn Malik also said, "We arrived at Khaibar, and when Allah helped His Messenger to open the fort, the beauty of Safiyah hint Huyayy Ibn Akhtab whose husband had been killed while she was a bride, was mentioned to Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) selected her for himself, and set out with her, and when we reached a place called Sidd-as-Sahba' ,Safiyah became clean from her menses then Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) married her. Hais (i.e., an 'Arabian dish) was prepared on a small leather mat. Then the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said to me, 'I invite the people around you.' So that was the marriage banquet of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and Safiyah. Then we proceeded towards Madinah, and I saw the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), making for her a kind of cushion with his cloak behind him (on his camel). He then sat beside his camel and put his knee for Safiyah to put her foot on, in order to ride (on the camel)."

Anas Ibn Malik said, "The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) stayed with Safiyah hint Huyayy for three days on the way of Khaibar where he consummated his marriage with her. Safiyah was amongst those who were ordered to use a veil."

In another narration, Anas said that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) stayed for three rights between Khaibar and Madinah and was married to Safiyah. I invited the Muslim to his marriage banquet and there was neither meat nor bread in that banquet but the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) ordered Bilal to spread the leather mats on which dates, dried yogurt and butter were put. The Muslims said amongst themselves, "Will she (i.e., Safiyah) be one of the mothers of the believers, i.e., one of the wives of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), or just (a lady captive) of what his right-hand possesses." Some of them said, "If the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) makes her observe the veil, then she will be one of the mothers of the believers (i.e., one of the Prophet's wives), and if he does not make her observe the veil, then she will be his lady slave. "So when he departed, he made a place for her behind him (on his mount) and made her observe the veil."

The Conquest of Khaibar's Forts

According to Ibn Ishaq, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) besieged the people of Khaibar in their two forts Al-Watih and Al-Sulaim until they could hold out no longer they asked him to let them go, and spare their lives, and he did so. Now, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had taken possession of all their property - Al-Shaqq, Nata, and Ak‑ Katibah and all their forts - except what appertained to these two.

When the people of Fadak heard of what had happened, they sent to the Messenger asking him to let them go and spare their lives and they would leave him their property, and he did so. The one who acted as intermediary was Muhqyisa Ibn Mas'ud, brother of Banu Harithah. When the people of Khaibar surrounded on these conditions they asked the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) to employ them on the property with half share in the produce, saying, "We know more about it than you and we are better farmers." The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) agreed to this arrangement on the condition that:

"If we wish to expel you we will expel you."

He made a similar arrangement with the men of Fadak.

The Division of the Booty

In his Sahih, AI-Bukhari reported the following narrations that explain how the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) divided the booty in Khaibar:

Jubair Ibn Mut' im said that 'Uthman Ibn ' Affan and I went to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and said, "You had given Banu Al-Muttalib from the fifth of Khaibar's booty and left us in spite of the fact that we and Banu Al‑Muttalib are similarly related to you." The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said,

"Banu Hashim and Banu Al-Muttalib only are one and the same."

So the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) did not give anything to Banu Abd Shams and Banu Nawfal.

Ibn ' Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) said that on the day of Khaibar, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) divided (the war booty of Khaibar) with the ratio of two shares for the horse and one-share for the foot soldier.

Nafi' explained this, saying, "If a man had a horse, he was given three shares and if he had no horse, then he was given one share."

Umar Ibn Al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) said, "By Him in Whose Hand my soul is, were I not afraid that the other Muslims might be left in poverty, I would divide (the land of) whatever village I may conquer (among the fighters), as the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) divided the land of Khaibar. But I prefer to leave it as a (source of) a common treasury for them to distribute its revenue amongst themselves."

Abu Sa' id Al-Khudri and Abu Hurairah (may Allah be pleased with them) narrated that Allah's Messenger appointed a man as the ruler of Khaibar who later brought some Janib (i.e., dates of good quality) to the Prophet. On that, Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said (to him), "Are all the dates of Khaibar like this'?" He said, "No, by Allah, 0 Allah's Messenger! But we take one Sa' of these (dates of good quality) for two or three Sa's of other dates (of inferior quality)." On that, Allah's Messenger said, "Do not do so, but first sell the inferior quality dates for money and then with that money, buy Janib."

 

Abu Sa' id and Abu Hurairah said, "The Prophet (face and blessings of Allah be upon him) made the brother of Banu Adi from the Ansar as the ruler of Khaibar."

The Coming of Ja' far Ibn Abi Talib and Some Men from Yemen to Khaibar

Al-Bukhari reported on the authority of Abu Musa (may Allah be pleased with him) that the later said, "The news of the migration of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) - from Makkah to Medinah - reached us while we were in Yemen. So we set out as emigrants towards him. We were (three) I am and my two brothers. I was the youngest of them, and one of the two was Abu Burda, and the other, Abu Ruhm, and our total number was either 53 or 52 men from my people. We got on a boat and our boat took us to Negus in Ethiopia. There we met Ja' far Ibn Abi Talib and stayed with him. Then we all came (to Madinah) and met the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) at the time of the conquest of Khaibar.


 

Some of the people used to say to us, namely the people of the ship, 'We have migrated before you.'

Asma' bint 'Umais, who was one of those who had come with us, came as a visitor to Hafsah, the wife the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). She had migrated along with those other Muslims who migrated to Negus. ' Umar came to Hafsah while Asma' bint Umais was with her. Umar, on seeing Asma', said, 'Who is this'?' She said, 'Asma' bint ' Umais.' Umar said, 'Is she the Ethiopian'? Is she the sea-faring lady?' Asma' replied, 'Yes.' 'Umar said, 'We have migrated before you (people of the boat), so we have got more right than you over Allah's Messenger.' On that Asma' became angry and said, 'No, by Allah, while you were with Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) who was feeding the hungry ones amongst you, and advised the ignorant ones amongst you, we were in the far-off hated land of Ethiopia, and all that was for the sake of Allah and His Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). By Allah, I will neither eat any food nor drink anything until I inform Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) of all that you have said. There we were harmed and frightened. I will mention this to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and will not tell a lie or curtail your saying or add something to it.'

So, when the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) came, she said, '0 Allah's Prophet! ' Umar has said such-and-such.' He said (to Asma'), 'What did you say to him?' Asma' said, 'I told him such-and-such.' The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said,

'He (i. e., 'Umar) has not gotten more right than your people over me, as he and his companions have (the reward of) only one migration, and you, the people of the boat, have (the reward of) two migrations.'

Asma', later on, said, 'I saw Abu Musa and the other people of the boat coming to me in successive groups, asking me about this narration, and to them nothing in the world was more cheerful and greater than what the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) had said about them.'"

Abu Burda narrated that Asma' said, "I saw Abu Musa requesting me to repeat this narration again and again."

Abu Burda also narrated that Abu Musa said, "The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said,

'I recognize the voice of the group of Al‑ Ash' ariyun, when they recite the Qur'an, when they enter their homes at night, and I recognize their houses by (listening) to their voices when they are reciting the Qur'an at night although I have not seen their houses when they came to them during the daytime. Amongst them is Hakim who, on meeting the cavalry or the enemy, used to say to them (i.e., the enemy). 'My companions order you to wait for them.'"

Abu Musa reported, "We came upon the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) after he had conquered Khaibar. He then gave us a share (from the booty), but apart from us he did not give to anybody else who did not attend the Conquest."

A Poisoned Sheep Gifted to the Messenger

At Khaibar, the Jews cooked a sheep containing poison and presented it to the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).

In his Sahih, Al-Bukhari narrated Abu Hurairah's saying: When Khaibar was conquered, a (cooked) sheep containing poison was given as a present to Allah's Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).

'Aishah (may Allah be pleased with her) said, "The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) in his ailment in which he died, used to say,

'0, Aishah! I still feel the pain caused by the food I ate at Khaibar, and at this time, I feel as if my aorta is being cut from that poison.' "

Text Box: 149
Khalid Ibn Al-Walid (may Allah be pleased with him) said, "On the day (of the battle of) Mu'tah, nine swords were broken in my hand, and nothing was left in my hand except a Yemenite sword of mine."

 

 

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