Story of Prophet Yahya (A.S.): We have described in full how Zakariya (AS)’s a genuine petition to Allah caused his wife to conceive Yahya AS in her elder years. We also discovered how Allah chose Yahya for him, a name that had never before been used in the history of mankind.
Zakariya AS, Yahya AS, Maryam AS, and Isa AS are all related to one another. Yahya AS would subsequently be linked to Isa AS, as his mother, the wife of Zakariya AS, was the maternal aunt of Maryam AS. According to some sources, the wife of Zakariya AS and Maryam AS were both expecting children at the same time, and she told Maryam AS that she had a vision that the one in her belly (Yahya AS) would one day prostrate to the one in Maryam AS’s AS belly (Isa AS). It was acceptable at this time to make prostrations to one another as a show of respect.
In this article, we will discuss the Story of Prophet Yahya in Islam (John the Baptist in Islam)
Meaning of “Yahya” Name
Because Yahya gave life to his mother’s barren womb, some Arabic scholars argue that the name Yahya is derived from the root word “Hayaa,” which means life. According to another tradition, the name was given to him by Allah because of how pious and faithful he was, and because of how well-guided he was as a messenger. Allah gave him several extraordinary qualities that no one had.
Story of Prophet Yahya
Yahya AS did not waste time on foolish things even when he was a little child. He once received an invitation to play from several young kids. He said that they weren’t created for play. This demonstrated that Yahya AS had a clear aim in life from an early age, which was to worship and serve Allah.
Yahya AS was taught the sacred texts from a young age, in contrast to the majority of other Prophets who received the revelation after they were forty. Yahya AS gained an advantage in religious knowledge and intelligence from an early age, which was reflected in his virtues:
(It was said to his son): “O Yahya! Hold fast the Scripture [the Taurat].” And We gave him wisdom while yet a child. (Al Qur’an 19:12)
The Personality of Prophet Yahya A.S.
To his society, Yahya AS represented the very best qualities: he was composed and genuinely kind to both people and animals. He had a profound affection for all of Allah’s creations and was merciful and gentle with everyone. He had a calm, pleasant demeanor and did not lose his temper often.
He had such a clean character and way of thinking that he believed all of his actions were in accordance with Allah. He did not even want the pleasure of a woman’s company, even though Prophets and Messengers are permitted to take wives because he did not want his heart or attention to be diverted from Allah to anybody else. He lived an entirely chaste life.
He avoided any transgression, and his conduct was so impeccable that no one in the community dared to rumor or even conjecture about him. Allah speaks about him:
And (made him) sympathetic to men as a mercy (or a grant) from Us, and pure from sins [i.e. Yahya] and he was righteous. (Al Qur’an 19:13)
Additionally, he was an obedient son who never defied his parents. Even as they grew very old, he served and honored them, showing kindness, patience, and generosity. In other words, his character was perfect; he never broke the law or displayed even the slightest hint of arrogance or disobedience.
And dutiful towards his parents, and he was neither an arrogant nor disobedient (to Allah or to his parents) . (Al Qur’an 19:14)
Imagine such a person, as well as the beautiful environment he grew up in: son of a Prophet and a virtuous lady, grandson of ‘Imran (whose family, as we have already established, was one of the best in Allah’s eyes throughout history), Maryam’s cousin, and Isa’s uncle.
His character was so honorable that Allah sent him or would send him salam at each of his life’s three stages—his birth, his death, and his resurrection:
“So Peace on him the day he was born the day that he dies and the day that he will be raised up to life (again)!” (Al Qur’an 19:15)
The Messenger of Allah SAW said: ‘Every son of Adam will come on the day of Resurrection and he will have sin against him except Yahya bin Zakariya.’ (Al-Hakam).
It is said that Yahya AS once walked alongside Isa AS. Yahya AS was better than he was, therefore Isa AS urged him to seek Allah to pardon him. Isa AS was to make dua for him instead since Isa AS was superior to him, Yahya AS replied.
“You are better than me, because I called peace on myself, but in your case, Allah sent His peace upon you.” Isa AS said in response. It alludes to the time when Isa AS spoke to his people while still a baby, saying: “And peace is on me the day I was born and the day I will die and the day I am raised alive. ” (Al Qur’an 19:33)
Even Isa AS acknowledged that Yahya AS was superior in some ways, demonstrating their mutual humility and respect for one other’s place in life.
Hadith claims that Yahya AS, Hasan RA, and Hussein RA shall lead the young people in paradise (the grandsons of Muhammad SAW through his daughter, Fatimah RA, and her husband Ali ibn Abi Talib RA).
Yahya AS used to cry a lot out of fear of Allah, to the point where the lines left by his tears were visible on his face. We are reminded of the following Hadith:
“Two eyes will not be touched by Hellfire: An eye that cries from the fear of Allah, and an eye that spent the night in a guard post in the path of Allah (Jihad) .” [Tirmidhi]
He shunned social interaction, preferring to spend his days alone. He also did not eat normally; instead, he preferred to consume leaves and spring water. He allegedly waited for the birds and animals to finish first, occasionally even eating their leftovers, out of fear of taking them away from them.
The scholar Abu Idris Al Khaulani reportedly said, “Shall I tell you who ate the finest food?” “Yahya bin Zakariya ate the cleanest food,” he subsequently said to the anticipating crowd. “He ate rather with animals than with me, because he loathed associating with people. ”
Yahya AS never had any wealth or possessions. Bani Israel was in reality accustomed to living in luxury and dressing elegantly during this period. Yahya AS, on the other hand, chose to use the skin and fur of animals, further displaying his submission to, humility toward, fear of, and love for Allah.
Every personality type among believers is described in the Qur’an; on one end of the spectrum, Sulaiman AS had all he desired, and on the other, Yahya AS had no possessions of the world. We should pause at this moment and consider our location. We constantly judge our position based on the sort of home we have, the clothes we wear, and the food we consume, but we don’t consider that we should live in accordance.
Several accounts claim that Yahya AS went missing once. His parents discovered him sobbing while sitting in the Jordan River. He clarified that despite experiencing Allah’s pleasure, those who reside in Jannah do not sleep. How therefore could he go to sleep right now without knowing whether he had won Allah’s favor?
Another report states that Yahya AS was discovered seated and sobbing in a grave he had dug for himself. Zakariya AS, his father, enquired as to what he was doing. “Oh, father!” Yahya AS exclaimed. ” Did you not say it to me yourself that there is only one bridge between Jannah and Hell, and the only way to cross it is with a weeper’s tears? Then Zakariya AS said, “Weep, my son.” then they both cried together.
Prophet Yahya (a.s.)’s message
The Bani Israel people immensely admired and revered Yahya AS, and his words had a profound effect on them.
According to Imam Ahmad, Allah gave Yahya AS five responsibilities to oversee Bani Israel. Yahya AS put off carrying out this directive for a while, so Isa AS reprimanded him and threatened to carry out his command on his own.
As a result, Yahya AS gathered the Israelites in Jerusalem and gave them the five commandments, one of which was to worship only Allah and not to associate Him with anyone else. This was because it was analogous to someone who had purchased a slave with the best of his silver or gold wealth, only for the slave to begin working for others.
The second was to make prayers to Allah and resist letting their attention wander to other things.
The third commandment is too fast, and it is compared to a man carrying a bag of musk around a large group of people, where everyone appreciates the scent.
The fourth was to give to charity since the parable is like a man who was abducted by an enemy, who then tried to behead him after tying his hand to his neck. At this point, the man would inquire of his foe, “Is it conceivable that I pay the ransom and release myself?” The man promised his captors he would pay the ransom with everything he had until they released him.
The fifth was the practice of remembering Allah often (zikr), which was compared to a man who had been driven from a fortified fortress by his adversary but had found it and entered it. When one remembers Allah, one is more shielded from the devil (Shaitan).
Prophet Yahya’s Death
Yahya AS’s death is the subject of conflicting accounts, even though their conclusions are consistent. One account claims that the King at the time was furious because Yahya was more well-liked by the populace than he was. Additionally, the King wanted a woman who was forbidden to him by Allah’s commandments because of their close blood ties, and he did not appreciate Yahya AS informing the populace of this restriction.
Enraged that Yahya AS was a hindrance to their marriage, the woman in issue continued to seduce the King. She persisted in luring and seducing him until the King, overcome with desire, vowed to give her anything she desired in exchange for her hand in marriage, despite the fact that such a union was forbidden in Islam. She was so perverse that she demanded to be served Yahya AS’s head on a platter. In response to her request, the King sent his army to Yahya’s AS mihrab (place of worship), where they beheaded him and brought the severed head to the monarch.
Another version is that Yahya AS was preaching when an extremely attractive prostitute expressed interest in him. She was enraged and plotting retribution when he turned down her approaches. The King at that time eventually developed a passion for her. She demanded that if the King wanted her, he would have to give her Yahya’s AS head as retaliation for earlier rejecting her. The same thing happened in this story’s ending—Yahya AS was brutally murdered out of spite for one woman, and his head was given to them. Think about how evil those people were to murder a Prophet and a Messenger while showing no dread of Allah.
Say: “Verily, there came to you Messengers before me, with clear signs and even with what you speak of; why then did you kill them, if you are truthful?” (Al Qur’an 3:183)
This was the Story of Prophet Yahya (A.S.), one of the most pious and revered servants of Allah.
Lessons learned from the Story of Prophet Yahya (A.S.)
Imran’s family serves as a beacon for all people. Their unmatched dedication to God and the way they interacted with one another serve as a reminder to us. Parents are more focused on their children’s future than they are on the pleasures of the present. Each youngster treats their parents and elders with the respect and devotion that God demands. These fortunate people served God with genuine devotion and upheld His precepts above everything else. God then said:
“So, as for those who believed (in the Oneness of God) and did deeds of righteousness, He will give their due rewards, and more, out of His Bounty. But as for those who refuse His worship and were proud, He will punish them with a painful torment. And they will not find for themselves, besides, God any protector or helper.” (Quran 4:173)
Prophet Yahya (John) wasn’t conceited or disobedient, Maryam (A.S.) (Mary) was one of the Truthful, Isa (AS.) (Jesus) was the Word of God, and Prophet Zakariya (A.S.) exalted his Lord. These descendants of Prophet David collectively comprise the blessed family of Imran, who serves as an inspiration to all people. By God’s Grace, we may be included in the righteous on the Day of Judgment if we persevere as they persevered, believe firmly as they believed, and serve God in total submission as they did.
May we learn something useful from the Story of Prophet Yahya (A.S.) and implement it in our lives and keep our iman strong.