He was born after the Year of the Elephant, but the exact period is disputed by scholars.
Some state three years while others two and a half, but they all agree that it was within three years.
His full name was Abdullah ibn Uthman ibn Aamir ibn A’mr ibn Ka’b ibn Sa’d ibn Taym ibn Murrah ibn Ka’b ibn Lu’ay ibn Ghaalib al-Qurashi al-Taymi. His agnomen was Abu Bakr. Some of his titles were as-Siddeeq meaning the truthful, as-Saahid meaning the companion of Allah's messenger and al-Atqaa meaning the one most in awe of Allah.
He is described as being of medium height, fair in complexion and rather thin. His face was without much flesh; he had thin legs and a dyed beard and he has been described as being handsome man.
Few families could boast the honour of having four generations upon Islam within the lifetime of Allah’s Messenger (saw).
Abu Bakr (RA) was a nobleman, a businessman and a frequent traveler. He also had deep knowledge of the science of genealogy and the Prophet (PBUH) testified to this knowledge in the statement:
" Verily Abu-Bakr (RA) is the most knowledgeable of Quraish in genealogy."
The people of Makkah respected Abu-Bakr (RA) and acknowledged his virtue,
As Ibn al-Dughunna stated when he saw Abu-Bakr (RA) leaving Makkah on migration:
"A man like you should not leave, nor should he be turned out as you assist the poor, keep good relations with your kith and kin, help the disabled, honour your guests, and stand up for justice; I am your protector. So go back and worship your Lord at your home." Ibn-Hajr states after mentioning this narration that Abu-Bakr (RA) was attributed with the qualities attributed to the Prophet (SAW) by Umm al-Mu’mineen Khadija after the first revelation. He never bowed to an idol and was not attracted to shirk in its various forms. He was a soul awaiting the call of Islam. Abu-Bakr (RA) never tasted a drop of alcohol, neither in Jaahiliya nor during Islam.
When he was asked if he had ever drunk in Jaahiliya, Abu-Bakr (RA) replied:
“I used to protect my honour and dignity, and whoever drinks loses his honour and dignity.”
HIS JOURNEY TO ISLAM:
As-Suyuti and Mahmood Shaakir relate certain reports wherein Abu-Bakr (RA) had discussions with Waraqa ibn Nawfal and Buhaira the Monk about the advent of a Prophet and the true deen. - Tarikh al-Khulafa 52, al-Khulafa al-Raashidoon 34
These factors assisted him in accepting Islam when it was presented to him.
The Prophet (PBUH) said to his friend, “I am the Messenger of Allah (SWT) and His prophet, Allah (SWT) has sent me and He has no partners, and none besides Him should be worshipped, and allegiance is under His obedience...” Abu-Bakr (RA) accepted without hesitation and that is why later the Messenger (PBUH) said “…Allah (SWT) sent me to you and you said “he is lying” but Abu-Bakr (RA) said “he is speaking the truth”, and he aided me with himself and his wealth.” - Bukhari 3661
And thus Abu-Bakr (RA) was the first free man to accept Islam and the Messenger (PBUH) was extremely pleased with this.
AFFECT ON EARLY DAWAH:
Imaan reached deep into his heart and he realized that Islam is a deen of action, effort and work:
Say “Verily my salât [i.e. worship, prayer], my sacrifice, my living and my dying are [all] for Allâh [exclusively] the Lord of the 'Alamîn.” (al-An'aam (6): 162)
Through his efforts Zubair, Uthman, Talha, Sa’d, Uthman ibn Maz’oon, Abu-Ubaydah, Abdur-Rahman ibn Awf, Abu-Salama and Zaid b. al-Arqam embraced Islam. He made a concerted effort on his family and even Aamir ibn Fuhairah, his slave, embraced Islam. Abu-Bakr’s (RA) strong draw card was his character and mercy to his fellow man, as the Messenger (PBUH) said: “The most merciful of my ummah to my ummah is Abu- Bakr (RA).” - Sahih al-Jaami 8/2
TRIALS IN THE EARLY DAYS:
Trials and tribulations are a part of life: every Prophet went through them and everyone following in their footsteps will encounter them. Abu-Bakr (RA) was no different; although he was from a noble family and had a high standing in society he was still persecuted. Ayesha narrates that when the companions were thirty-eight men in number, Abu-Bakr (RA) began pleading with the Messenger (PBUH) to go out to the Ka'ba. “O Abu-Bakr, we are too few.” But Abu-Bakr (RA) persisted: the Messenger (PBUH) gave in: they headed for the Ka’ba and dispersed into small groups. Abu-Bakr (RA) stood up and began to call to Allah (SWT) and His Messenger (PBUH), so the mushriks came to him from all sides and began to beat him. U’tba ibn Rabee’ah beat him with a shoe severely on his face and he was hurt in his stomach. The mob continued until some people of Banu Taym came to his aid and took him away in a stretcher with no doubt in their minds that he was going to die. Banu Taym swore that if he died they would kill U’tba in retaliation. In the evening Abu-Bakr (RA) came round and his first words to his mother were, “How is the Messenger (PBUH)?” And so she accepted Islam. .- al-Bidaayah 30/3
Urwa ibn Zubair stated, “I asked Am’r ibn al A’as about the severest torments that the Messenger (PBUH) went through and he replied that once the Messenger (PBUH) was praying at the Ka’ba and Uqba ibn Abi-Mu’eet came and began to strangle the Messenger (PBUH); Abu- Bakr (RA) rushed to the rescue and recited: Would you kill a man because he says: “My Lord is Allâh”? (Ghafir (40):28) - Bukhari 3856
HIS JIHAD WITH WEALTH:
As the da’wah gained momentum so did the stance of the mushriks, especially against the weak and poor who had none to aid them. Bilal was a nobody in Makkah. He was there to be used, to serve and remain a slave. For him to have an idea, an opinion or even a thought of his own was a crime. So imagine when he decided on his own to embrace Islam how his master Umayyah ibn Khalaf must have reacted to this crime. He would refuse to feed Bilal for a while, and then take him out to the desert when the sun was intense, and make him lie on the sand with a huge rock on his chest with the hope that this torment would force him to renegade upon Islam, but Bilal would reply with conviction: “Ahad! Ahad!” Abu-Bakr (RA) went to Umayyah and said: “Fear Allah with regards to this weak one.”
“You have put him in this problem so you save him!” was Umayyah’s reply.
“I give you my slave, who is stronger and upon your religion, in return for him.” - Ibn-Hishaam 394/1
Imaam al-Dhahabi states in another version that Abu-Bakr (RA) purchased him and that Umayyah said:“I would have sold him for even one uqiyah.”
Abu- Bakr (RA) replied:“I would have bought him for kaza wa kaza uqiyah.” - al-Siyar 352/1
After being rescued Bilal turned to Abu-Bakr (RA) and said:“If you bought me for yourself then keep me, but if you did so for Allah’s sake then let me go.” - Bukhari 3755
Aamir ibn Fuhairah was also purchased and set free by Abu-Bakr (RA), as well as Umm-U’bays, Zineerah, Nahdiyah, the Slave of Banu Mu’ammil and others.- Ibn-Hishaam 393/1
Abu-Qahaafah said to his son: “O son, I see you setting these weak ones free; why not free someone strong who can support you and protect you: would that not be better?”
“O father, I do this only for Allah’s sake.”
And Allah revealed:
“As for him who gives and keeps his duty to Allâh and fears Him…” (al-Lail (92): 5)
HIS FIRST HIJRAH:
When the persecution of the Muslims increased, Abu-Bakr (RA) decided to migrate to Abyssinia. When he reached a place called Barq al-Ghimaad outside Makkah, he met Ibn al-Dughunna, who asked him: “Where are you going, Abu-Bakr?”“My people have forced me out, so I want to move on the earth and worship my Lord” was the reply.Ibn al-Dughunna said: “A man like you should not leave, nor should he be turned out as you assist the poor, keep good relations with your kith and kin, help the disabled, honour your guests, and stand up for justice: I am your protector. So go back and worship your Lord at your home.”They both returned to Makkah and the mushriks honoured the protection of Ibn al-Dughunna with the condition that Abu-Bakr (RA) worship his Lord in his house and not in public, because they feared his influence on their women and children. Abu-Bakr (RA) continued like this for some time and then decided to build a porch in front of his house, where he would stand to perform salaah and recite the Qur'an. Women and children would listen to him, and watch him recite and weep.The Quraish sent word to Ibn al-Dughunna that Abu-Bakr (RA) had broken the agreement… -Bukhari 2297
PERMISSION TO MIGRATE:
At that time the Messenger (PBUH) was in Makkah, and he said to the Muslims, "In a dream I have been shown your migration place: a land of date-palm trees, between two mountains [and between] two rocky tracts." Abu-Bakr (RA)also prepared to leave for Madina, but Allah's Messenger (PBUH) said to him, "Wait for a while, because I hope that I will be allowed to migrate also."
Abu-Bakr (RA) said, "Do you indeed expect this? Let my father be sacrificed for you." The Prophet (PBUH) said, "Yes."
So Abu-Bakr (RA) did not migrate at once, in order to accompany him (SAW). He prepared two camels he possessed for four months. Once, while we were sitting at noon, someone said to Abu- Bakr (RA), "This is Allah's Messenger (PBUH) with his head covered, coming at a time at which he never used to visit us before." Abu-Bakr (RA) said, "May my parents be sacrificed for him. By Allah (SWT), he has not come at this hour except for a great necessity."
So Allah's Messenger (PBUH) came and asked permission to enter, and he was allowed to enter. When he entered, he said to Abu-Bakr (RA). "Tell everyone who is present with you to leave". Abu- Bakr (RA) replied, "They are none but your family. May my father be sacrificed for you, O Allah's Messenger (PBUH)."
The Prophet said, "I have been granted permission to migrate." Abu-Bakr (RA) said, “Shall I accompany you? May my father be sacrificed for you.” Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) said, "Yes."
Abu-Bakr (RA) said, "O Allah's Messenger (PBUH) may my father be sacrificed for you, take one of these two camels of mine." Allah's Messenger (PBUH) replied, "I accept it with payment." We prepared the baggage quickly and put some journey food in a leather bag for them. Asmaa cut a piece from her waist-belt and tied the mouth of the leather bag with it, and for that reason she was known as Dhat-un-Nitaqain (“she of the two girdles”).Then Allah's Messenger (PBUH) and Abu-Bakr (RA) reached a cave in the mountain of Thaur and stayed there for three nights.
HELPERS OF HIJRAH:
Abdullah ibn Abi-Bakr, who was intelligent and young, used to stay with them at night and leave before daybreak so that in the morning he would be with Quraish as if he had spent the night in Makkah. He would find out about any plot made against them, and when darkness fell would bring the news back to the cave.Aamir ibn Fuhairah would bring grazing sheep and goats to them after nightfall so that they always had fresh milk at night. He would then leave with the herd before daybreak, following the same routine for all three nights. The herd of animals would obscure the marks in the sand or dust that had been left by Ibn Abi-Bakr, so that no tracker could follow him and discover the men hiding in the cave. Allah's Messenger (PBUH) and Abu-Bakr (RA) had hired a man from the tribe of Banu al-Dail from the family of Banu Abd ibn Adi as a guide and he was on the religion of the infidels of Quraish. The Prophet (PBUH) and Abu-Bakr (RA) trusted him, gave him their two camels and took his promise to bring the two camels to the cave of Thaurin the morning after three nights.
SURAQAH IBN JU’SHAM:
The nephew of Suraqah ibn Ju'sham said that his (i.e. the nephew’s) father informed him that he heard Suraqah ibn Ju'sham saying, "The messengers of Quraish came to us declaring that they had assigned for the persons who would kill or arrest Allah's Messenger (PBUH) and Abu- Bakr (RA), a reward equal to their blood money”.
While I was sitting in one of the gatherings of my tribe, a man came to us and said, "O Suraqah! No doubt I have just seen some people far away and I think they are Muhammad and his companion."
Suraqah added, I too realized that it must have been them but I said, “No, it is not them; you have seen so-and-so and so-and-so, whom we saw set out earlier”.
I stayed in the gathering for a while and then got up and left for my home and ordered my slave-girl to get my horse ready for me...” - Bukhari 3696
Abu- Bakr (RA) said, “I was with the Prophet (PBUH) in the cave. When I raised my head, I saw the feet of the people and I said, "O Allah's Messenger (PBUH), if any of them should look down, they will see us." The Prophet (PBUH) said, "O Abu-Bakr, be quiet! [For we are] two and Allah is the Third with us.” - Bukhari 3653The Qur'an testifies to this: “Whether you help him [Muhammad] or not [it does not matter], for Allâh did indeed help him when the disbelievers drove him out, the second of two; when they [Muhammad and Abu-Bakr] were in the cave, and he [Allah’s messenger] said to his companion [Abu-Bakr] "Be not sad [nor afraid]; surely Allâh is with us." Then Allâh sent down His Sakînah upon him, and strengthened him with forces [angels] which you saw not, and made the word of those who disbelieved the lowermost, while the Word of Allâh became the uppermost; and Allâh is Almighty, All-Wise.” (At-Tauba (9): 40). Also it was narrated by Urwa ibn al-Zubair that Allah's Messenger (PBUH) met him in a caravan of Muslim merchants who were returning from Shaam. Al-Zubair gave Allah's Messenger (PBUH) and Abu- Bakr (RA) new white garments to wear.
When the Muslims of Madinah heard the news of the departure of Allah's Messenger (PBUH) from Makkah, they began going to the Harrah every morning. They would wait there for him until the heat of the noon forced them to return. One day, after waiting for a long while, they returned home; then a Jew on the roof of one of the forts of his people saw Allah's Messenger (PBUH) and his companion, dressed in white clothes, emerging out of the desert mirage.The Jew could not help shouting at the top of his voice, "O you Arabs! Here is your great man whom you have been waiting for." So all the Muslims rushed to welcome Allah's Messenger (PBUH) at the Harrah. Abu-Bakr (RA) stood up, receiving the people, while Allah's Messenger (PBUH) sat down and kept silent. Some of the Ansaar who came, who had not seen Allah's Messenger (PBUH) before, began to greet Abu-Bakr (RA), but when the sunlight fell on Allah's Messenger (PBUH) and Abu-Bakr (RA) came forward and shaded him with his sheet they realised which man was Allah's Messenger (PBUH). - Bukhari 3905
The masjid was built, the community was established, brotherhood between the Ansaar and Muhajiroon was implemented - Abu-Bakr (RA) and Khaarijah ibn Zaid, treaties with the Christian and Jewish tribes were entered into, and the Islamic State was established.
BATTLE OF BADR:
He participated in this battle and some events related to him are that:
BATTLE OF UHUD:
“Is Muhammed with you?” thrice, and the Prophet (PBUH) forbade them from answering; then Abu-Sufyaan screamed: “Is Ibn Abi-Quhaafah with you?” thrice, and when no answer was received he said to his aides, “they have been killed.” - Fath al-Baari 375/11
BANU NADHEER, BANU MUSTALIQ and BANU QURAIDHA:
The Messenger (PBUH) went to them seeking assistance in the payment of blood-money to Banu Aamir, two of whose tribesmen had been killed accidentally. Banu Nadheer plotted to assassinate the Messenger (PBUH) while he sat with Abu-Bakr (RA), Umar (RA) and Ali (RA) waiting for them. - Bukhari 3804
When news reached them that Banu Mustaliq were planning an attack, the Messenger (PBUH) pre-empted them with an attack and Abu-Bakr (RA) was given the standard of the Muhajiroon. - al-Bidaayah 157/4
BATTLE OF HUDAIBIYAH:
The Messenger (PBUH) went out with 1,400 companions to perform umrah in the sixth year after the hijra but they were prevented from doing so by the Quraish. A spy was sent out to bring news of the Quraish; he returned saying that Quraish would not allow the Messenger (PBUH) to enter Makkah. Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) consulted Abu-Bakr (RA), who said, “O Prophet of Allah (SWT), you left intending to visit the House of Allah, not wanting war nor the killing of anyone, so continue on your journey and if anyone prevents [us] then we will fight,” so the Messenger (PBUH) continued towards Makkah. - Abu-Bakr of Salaabi 66
They eventually reached Hudaybia where negotiations were held between the Quraish and the Muslims, Urwa ibn Masood said, “O Muhammad, you have gathered this scum of people and have come while the Quraish are ready, men, women, young and old – all have sworn that you shall not enter.” Abu-Bakr (RA) swiftly responded to him, “…of Laat, will we flee and desert him?” Urwa asked “who said that?” When he found out that it was Abu-Bakr (RA), he said, “[By the One] In whose hand my soul is, if it were not for your favour to me I would give you a fitting response.” - Bukhari 2732 When the agreement was reached between the Prophet (PBUH) and Suhail ibn Amr, Abu-Bakr (RA) accepted it without reservation but Umar (RA) had some reservations. - Ibn-Hishaam 346/3
BATTLE OF KHAIBAR:
Abu- Bakr (RA)was the first commander dispatched to some of the forts of the Jews.
When the order to burn the date-palms of the Jews was given, Abu-Bakr (RA) went back to the Messenger (PBUH) and informed him that this would be a loss to the Muslims, so the Messenger (PBUH) accepted his alternative proposal.
Abu-Bakr (RA) was made the leader of the expedition to Banu Fazaarah and a female was taken prisoner and later exchanged for Muslim prisoners in the hands of Quraish. - Ahmed 16949
DHAAT AL SALAASIL:
Advice to Raafi’ ibn A’mr the guide. - Majma Al Zawaid 202/5
Obedience to Amr ibn al-A’as not to light fires. - al-Hakim 42/3
CONQUEST OF MAKKAH:
The treaty of Hudaybia was broken when Banu Bakr, the ally of Quraish, attacked Khuza’ah, the ally of the Muslims, with the aid of Quraish. - Ibn-Hishaam 44/4
The Quraish sent Abu-Sufyaan to renew and extend the treaty, but the Messenger (PBUH)refused. He then went to Abu-Bakr (RA).
Abu-Bakr (RA) entered the house of Ayesha and saw her preparing food for travel. He questioned her but she did not respond.
He stood firm with the Prophet (PBUH).
A siege was laid upon the city but it was unsuccessful. Abdullah ibn Abi-Bakr was struck by an arrow and passed away later in Madinah.
Preparation and sacrifice of wealth by Abu-Bakr (RA) (all) and Umar (RA) (half). Abu-Dawood 1680 He was given the standard during this expedition. The death and burial of Abdullah Dhul-Bajadayn and Abu-Bakr’s (RA)statement during his burial. - Musannaf Abdir-Razzaaq 497/3
READYING THE ARMY:
The Messenger (PBUH) returned from the final hajj and began to ready the army of Usaamah in the months of Muharram and Safar to face the Romans. There were certain comments from some of the sahaabah regarding Usaamah being the ameer, so HE (SAW) said to them, “You criticize his leadership as you did his father’s; verily his father was from among the most beloved to me and so is his son.” - Bukhari 4469
While the war preparations were in progress, the Messenger (PBUH) fell ill. During this period, he (SAW) gave an address: “Verily Allah (SWT) has given a slave the choice between this world and that which is with Allah (SWT), and the slave has chosen that which is with Allah (SWT).” - Bukhari 3654
Abu-Bakr (RA) began to cry and other companions were surprised by this. The reason for Abu-Bakr’s (RA) weeping was that he realised what Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) meant.
SICKNESS OF THE MESSENGER (SAW):
When the sickness increased, the Messenger (PBUH) ordered that Abu-Bakr (RA) should lead the Muslims in salaah. - Bukhari 712
The Messenger (PBUH) found some strength and with the help of two companions entered the masjid; he indicated that Abu-Bakr (RA) should remain where he was: the Messenger (PBUH) sat on Abu-Bakr’s (RA) left and led the salaah from there. During the fajr salaah on Monday, the Messenger (PBUH) looked into the masjid and saw the beautiful sight of the companions praying united behind Abu-Bakr (RA). He (SAW) signalled to them to continue their salaah and went back into his house. - Bukhari 4437
Abu-Bakr (RA)visited Ayesha, mentioned that it seemed that the sickness of the Messenger (PBUH)was declining, and then left for the house of one of his wives at the edge of town. A few hours later the sickness began to increase. Usaamah entered the room and the Messenger (PBUH) was not even able to speak. He lifted his hands, making du'a for Usaamah. Abdur-Rahman ibn Abi-Bakr entered the room and he had a siwaak in his hands… “...To the Higher-most Companion” were his final words, and then he left this temporary existence. - Bukhari 4449
The companions were in a state of shock; the greatest calamity had befallen them. Some just sat down; others were at a loss for words. Ali (RA) sat in his house; Umar (RA)denied that the Messenger (PBUH) had passed away. - al-Qawaasim 38
When Abu-Bakr (RA) heard the news, he came to the house of Ayesha, entered, went to the body of the Messenger (PBUH), uncovered his face, kissed him and wept. He then left, went to the people in the mosque, and told Umar (RA) to sit down, but Umar (RA) went on denying the Messenger’s (PBUH) death. Abu-Bakr (RA)then said in his famous address, after praising Allah:
“Whoever among you worshipped Muhammad, then verily Muhammad is dead, but whoever worshipped Allah, Allah is alive and will never die.” He then recited the following verses of the Qur'an: “Muhammad is nothing but a messenger of Allah; Messengers of God have passed away before him. What if he dies or is killed? Will you turn back upon your heels? And whosoever turns back upon his heels will by no means do harm to Allah, and Allah will reward the thankful.” (Aal-e Imran (3): 144). - Bukhari 3668
After the death of the Messenger (PBUH), the Ansaar gathered in the Saqeefa of Banu Saaidah to decide who the new Ameer should be. They rallied around the leader of the Khazraj, Sa'd ibn Ubaadah, but by this time the news of their gathering had reached the Muhajiroon.
UMAR LATER REALTED:
“After the death of the Prophet (PBUH) we were informed that the Ansaar were gathered in the shed of Banu Saaidah. I said to Abu-Bakr (RA), “Let us go to these Ansaari brothers of ours.” So we set out seeking them, and when we approached them, two pious men of theirs met us and said, “O group of Muhajiroon! Where are you going?” We replied, “We are going to these Ansaari brothers of ours.” They said to us, “You shouldn't go near them; carry out whatever you decide.” ‘I said, “By Allah, we will go to them.” And so we proceeded until we reached them at the shed of Banu Saaidah. There was a man sitting amongst them wrapped in something.
I asked, “Who is that man?” They said, “He is Sa'd ibn Ubaadah.”I asked, “What is wrong with him?” They said, “He is sick.” After we had sat for a while, the Ansaar's speaker said, “None has the right to be worshipped but Allah, and praises unto Allah as He deserves”; then he added, “To proceed: we are Allah's Ansaar and the majority of the Muslim army, while you, the Muhajiroon, are a small group and some people from among you came with the intention of preventing us from this matter and depriving us of it.” When the speaker had finished, I intended to speak as I had prepared a speech which I liked and which I wanted to deliver in the presence of Abu-Bakr (RA). When I wanted to speak, Abu-Bakr (RA) said, “Wait a while.” I disliked making him angry. So Abu-Bakr (RA)himself made a speech, and he was wiser and more patient than I. By Allah,he never missed a sentence that I liked in my own prepared speech, but he said the like of it or better than it. After a pause he said, “O Ansaar, you deserve all [the qualities that you have attribute to yourselves], but this matter is only for the Quraish as they are the best of the Arabs, and I am pleased to suggest that you choose either of these two men, so give the oath of allegiance to either of them.” And then Abu-Bakr (RA) took my hand and that of Abu-Ubaydah ibn al-Jaraah, who was sitting amongst us. I hated nothing of what he had said except that proposal, for by Allah, I would rather have my neck chopped off than become the ruler of a nation, of one of whose citizens was Abu-Bakr (RA).
And then one of the Ansaar said, 'O Quraish, There should be one ruler from us and one from you.' Then there was a hue and cry among the gathering and their voices rose so that I was afraid there might be great disagreement, so I said, “O Abu-Bakr! Hold out your hand.” He held his hand out and I pledged allegiance to him, and then all the emigrants gave the pledge of allegiance and so did the Ansaar.- Bukhari 6380
IN THE NARRATION OF AHMAD:
Abu-Bakr (RA) spoke and mentioned the various virtues of the Ansaar, such as that:
“…you know the Messenger (PBUH)said that “if the people took a path and the Ansaar took a path, I would join the Ansaar on their path”, but Sa'd you do know that the Messenger (PBUH) also said “Quraish are the leaders in this affair…”
Sa’d said, “You have spoken the truth; we are the ministers and you the leaders.”
THE GENERAL PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE:
The day after the meeting at the Saqeefa of Banu Saaidah, Abu-Bakr (RA) sat on the mimbar and Umar (RA) addressed the people, saying “The affair is in the hands of the best of you, the companion and second one in the cave, so come and give the pledge of allegiance,” So the Muslims came forward and gave the general pledge.
ABU BAKR THEN GAVE A KHUTBAH:
“I have been given authority over you, and I am not the best of you. If I do well, help me; and if I do wrong, set me right. Truthfulness is a trust and lies are treachery. The weak among you shall be strong with me [i.e. in my sight] until I have secured his rights, if Allah wills; and the strong among you shall be weak with me until I have wrested from him the rights of others, if Allah wills.
No community gives up jihad except that Allah debases them, and never does immorality spread except that Allah sends down His punishment.
Obey me so long as I obey Allah and His Messenger, but if I disobey Allah and His Messenger you owe me no obedience. Arise for your prayer, may Allah have mercy upon you.” - al-Bidaayah 306/6
POINTS THAT CAN BE INFERRED FROM THE KHUTBAH:
THE ATTITUDE OF ALI, SA’D IBN ABDULLAH AND ZUBAIR TO HIS LEADERHSIP:
Many tales and fabrications have been concocted around the reactions of Ali, Sa'd and Zubair to the leadership of Abu-Bakr (RA). That they did not pledge allegiance and were voices of dissent, and the like. But the truth is that they did give the pledge at the masjid as Abu-Saeed al-Khudri narrates. - al-Bidaayah 249/5 And this narration is worth gold, as Ibn-Khuzaimah stated.
Some ulama are of the opinion that Ali (RA) renewed his pledge after six months when rumours began to spread. - al-Bidaayah 49/5
Ali (RA)was always at Abu-Bakr’s (RA) side and even prevented him from going out to fight the apostates himself because he feared for Abu-Bakr’s (RA) safety.
THE INHERITANCE ISSUE:
Much has been said about Faatimah seeking her share of inheritance from the estate of the Messenger (PBUH).
It has been claimed that Abu-Bakr (RA) denied Faatimah her share unjustly.
But the reality is that Abu-Bakr (RA) and the rest of the companions were following the words of the Messenger (PBUH) in this matter, as Prophet (PBUH) had said,
“We Prophets are not inherited from; whatever we leave is sadaqah.” - Bukhari 6725
Points to note:
INTERNAL AFFAIRS OF THE STATE:
The salary of Abu-Bakr (RA). - Riyaad an-Nudrah 291
At the service of the community:
Abu-Bakr (RA) did not remove anyone from a position given to him by the Messenger (PBUH) except to promote him to a higher position. His method of appointment was always shura. Their positions entailed:
The manner and method of Qadaa remained as it was during the time of the Messenger (PBUH). The incidents of judicial process were not numerous because the Muslims were occupied with the various battles and also because Abu-Bakr’s rule was short. Sources of Qadaa:
The Roman Empire had been invited to Islam by the Companion Dihya al-Kalbi to Hirqal. In the 7th year after the hijra: The Messenger (PBUH) sent out a force under Zaid ibn Haritha, who met with the Romans and Christian Arabs in battle; this battle was called the Battle of Mu’ta. In the 9th year after the hijra: The Messenger (PBUH) himself had gathered an army and gone out to Tabuk to face the Romans, but no fighting ensued. In the 11th year after the hijra: The Messenger (PBUH) readied the army of Usaamah to go out and face the Romans. Criticism of Usaamah’s leadership: There were some comments by some of the sahaabah about Usaamah being the ameer, and Allah’s Messenger (PBUH) had said to them:
“You criticize his leadership, as you did his father’s; verily his father was from among the most beloved to me and so is his son.” - Bukhari 4469
After death of Prophet (PBUH): The army was camped just outside the city at Jurf. After the death of the Messenger (PBUH) they returned to Madinah. On the third day after the death of the Messenger (PBUH), Abu-Bakr (RA) ordered the army to return to Jurf and prepare to march out. Many of the sahaabah felt that because of the news that many Arab tribes had apostatised, the army should remain in Madinah and not march out. Umar (RA) was sent by Usaamah to convince Abu-Bakr (RA), but Abu-Bakr (RA) was adamant that they march. A general meeting was held and Abu-Bakr (RA) said: “By him in whose hand the soul of Abu-Bakr is, even if I knew that a beast will tear me apart if I sent out the army, I would still dispatch it as the Messenger sall-Allahu alaihi wasallam ordered, and even if I were the only one [left] in the city I would still dispatch it.” - Tarikh at-Tabari 45/4
The army was dispatched and Abu-Bakr (RA) walked beside Usaamah, who was riding.
Abu-Bakr (RA) gave Usaamah and his army 10 important pieces of advice: - Tarikh at Tabari 47/4
Then Abu-Bakr (RA) asked Usaamah’s permission for Umar (RA) to remain behind in Madinah.
LESSONS TO BE LEARNT:
THE EFFECT THIS DEPARTURE HAD ON THE ENEMIES OF ISLAM:
The Romans were shocked that the leader of the Muslims had died and yet they dispatched an army three days later. The Arab tribes feared the strength of the Muslims. Those who wanted to attack Madinah had to think twice.
REASONS AND TYPES OF APOSTATE:
ABU-BAKR'S (RA) DREAM:
During the life of the Messenger (PBUH) Abu-Bakr (RA) had had a dream and said:
“I saw around my wrists two bangles of gold, so I blew upon them and they were broken. I interpreted this to mean the two liars, one of Yemenand one of Yamaamah. - Bukhari 3621
ABU-BAKR'S (RA) STANCE TOWARDS THEM:
Abu-Bakr (RA) was firm in his resolve to fight them all until they submitted to the rule of Islam. But some of the sahaabah were not convinced that this was the best approach at that time.
Umar (RA) said to Abu-Bakr (RA):
“How can you fight them when the Messenger (PBUH) said, ‘I have been ordered to fight until they say Laa ilaha illa Allah, and whoever says it has his wealth and life protected’?”
Abu-Bakr (RA) replied:
“By Allah, I will fight the one who differentiates between salaah and zakaah; by Allah if they hold back a goat that they used to pay to the Messenger (PBUH) I will fight them [until they pay it].” - Bukhari 6924
Also when Umar (RA) asked him to be lenient with the people and try to win their hearts, he replied:
“Courageous in jaahiliya and a coward in Islam! Revelation has ceased, and the deen is complete; will the deen be debased while I am alive?” - Mishkaat al-Masaabih 6034
REFUSAL TO PAY ZAKAAH:
A group of those who refused to pay the zakaah arrived in Madinah for talks with Abu-Bakr (RA), to try to persuade him, but they met with an unshakeable Abu-Bakr (RA).
They returned knowing that Abu-Bakr (RA) would not waver, so they decided to attack Madinah. The Muslims were put on alert, patrols were set up around Madinah, and word was sent to outlying Muslim tribes for support. After three days the same delegation attacked Madinah, and some fighting occurred, but they soon retreated.
ALL-OUT ATTACK ON THE APOSTATES:
Letters were sent to all Muslim tribes living in areas of unrest, advising them to be firm. Letters were sent to all the apostatising tribes, telling them:
During the rule of Abu-Bakr (RA):
THE FITNA OF AL-ASWAD AL-ANSI:
His name was A’bhala ibn Ka’b and he was a sorcerer. When news reached him that the Prophet (PBUH) was sick, he announced that he was a prophet and called himself Rahmaan of Yemen. He claimed that two angels, Saheeq and Shaqeeq, visit him. He mustered a group of followers from various tribes, attacked San’aa and took it over. Shahr ibn Baazaan, the ruler of Yemen, was killed and his wife Aazad was made Aswad’s new wife. Aswad was severe in his torture of Muslims, as shown by the incident of Abu-Muslim al-Khawlaani. - Usd al-Ghaayah 304/6
Fayrooz, Aazad and Qays ibn Makshooh (head of Aswad’s army) came together in a plot to kill Aswad and succeeded. Although the leader had been killed, after the death of the Messenger (PBUH) apostasy reared its ugly head again but was crushed by Abu-Bakr (RA), who sent Muhaajir ibn Abi-Umayyah to the region: he was later joined by Ikramah ibn Abi-Jahl. During the reign of apostasy in Yemen there was a movement of prostitutes under Hir bint Yaaman al-Yahudiyah. They were delighted by the fall of Islamic rule in Yemenand spread their immorality. Two women were caught slandering the Messenger (PBUH); their hands were cut off and teeth pulled out, but this ruling of Muhaajir did not please Abu-Bakr (RA). - al-Tabari 157/4
Yemen was now united upon Islam.
FITNA OF TULAIHA:
His name was Tulaiha ibn Khuwailid ibn Nawfal al-Asadi. He had come to the Messenger (PBUH), proclaimed his Islam and pledged allegiance. Soon after his return he claimed prophethood. The Messenger (PBUH) sent Diraar ibn al-Azwar with an army to fight him, but they were unable to do so because of their few numbers and Tulaiha’s huge army. Khalid ibn Walid asked someone who was with Tulaiha and had accepted Islam to mention a few verses of Tulaiha’s supposed revelation, and found that it was ludicrous. - al-Bidaayah 350/6
Abu-Bakr (RA) sent Adi ibn Haatim and he spoke to them, but they said they would not obey Abal-Faseel; he said, “You will find him to be Abal-Fahl.” Abu-Bakr (RA) then sent Khalid to them. They met him in the Battle of Buzaagha. In battle Tulaiha’s followers were coming to him and asking has Jibreel come. They eventually deserted him and fled. - al-Bidaayah 322/6 Tulaiha also fled and later recanted and entered Islam, but was reluctant to face Abu-Bakr (RA); he gave Umar (RA) the pledge of allegiance during his caliphate.
SUJAAH & MALIK IBN NUWAIRAH:
Banu Tameem had within them some who apostatised, some who paid the zakaah and some who were waiting to see what would happen. While this was happening Sujaah bint al-Haarith, who was of Christian Arab origin, passed by them on her way to fight Abu-Bakr (RA); she claimed to be a prophetess and they answered her call and rallied behind her with their leader, Malik ibn Nuwairah. Banu Tameem persuaded her to begin with Musailima and so they headed to Yamaamah, but there Sujaah and Musailima joined forces and she was married to Musailima. - al -Bidaayah 324/6 When she heard that Khalid ibn Walid was close, she decided to flee back to her land. When this occurred Malik ibn Nuwairah regretted his alliance with her and camped at a place called Butaah. He was captured by Khalid ibn Walid, and the Muslims differed about whether the adhaan had been given or not. It was announced, “Give the prisoners warmth”; some soldiers understood this to mean “kill the prisoner”, so Malik ibn Nuwairah was killed. - al -Bidaayah 326/6 Malik’s wife Umm-Tameem was taken by Khalid, as part of the spoils of war. - al-Bidaayah 326/6
APOSTASY IN OMAN:
Laqit ibn Maalik claimed prophethood but Ikramah was sent to him and his fitna was put to an end.
His name was Musailimah ibn Thumaamah ibn Kabeer al-Hanafi. He came with Banu Hanifa to Madinah in 9 AH and pledged his allegiance to the Messenger (PBUH). He would send people to listen to the Qur’an and then try to imitate it. Amr ibn al-A'as, before accepting Islam, told him, “Walaahi, you know that I know that you are a liar.” - Tafseer ibn-Kathir 547/4 His people would say, “We know he is a liar and that Muhammad is truthful, but a liar from Rabee'ah is dearer to us than a truthful one from Mudar.” In 10AH he wrote to the Messenger (PBUH): “From Musailima the Messenger to Muhammad the Messenger: for us is half the land and for the Quraish half, but the Quraish are not just in the matter.”
The Messenger (PBUH) wrote back to him,
“Bismillah ar-rahmaan ar-raheem. From Muhammad the Prophet to Musailima the liar: the earth belongs to Allah and He grants it to whoever from his servants He wishes; so safety to the muttaqeen and peace to those who follow the [true] guidance.” - al-Tabari 386/3
The messengers of Musailima were asked what they had to say; they said, “We say what our master says.” - Tarikh al-Tabari 386/3
The messenger of the Prophet (PBUH), Habeeb ibn Zaid al-Ansaari, was the messenger to Musailima; he was tortured and killed. - Usd al-Ghaayah 1049 Rajaal ibn Unfuwa was sent by the Messenger (PBUH) to Musailima and his followers to weaken their bond, but he joined Musailima’s ranks. Thumaamah ibn Uthaal from Banu Haneefah held firm upon Islam and his clan stuck to him. Khalid ibn Walid was sent with an army of 13,000 soldiers to face Musailima, who mustered an army of about 40,000. Majaa’ah and about forty of Musailima’s men advanced on a patrol but were captured by the Muslims. When the battle began, the kuffaar advanced until they reached Khalid's camp and entered it; they wanted to kill Umm-Tameem but Majaa’ah gave her protection. The battle was fierce and the Muslims pushed on and fought bravely. Thaabit ibn Qays dug a hole, planted his legs firm in it and carried the standard. Saalim mawlaa Abi-Hudhaifah was asked, “Do you fear that they will attack from your side?” He said, “Bi’sa haamil al-Qur’an ana izan.”
Musailima and his men fled to a shed, where they garrisoned themselves. The Muslims’ difficulty was how to penetrate the forts/sheds. Baraa ibn Malik said, “Throw me over the wall”; this was done and he managed to open the gates after sustaining more than 80 wounds. The Muslims then entered and fierce fighting took place within the fort. Wahshi saw Musailima trying to flee and hit him with a spear; Abu-Dujanah finished him off. - al-Bidaayah 30/6 This fort was a bloodbath; between six and seven hundred Muslims were martyred and over ten thousand disbelievers were killed. Abu-Dujanah was martyred; Zaid ibn al-Khattaab (Umar’s brother), Thaabit ibn Qays, Abaad ibn Bishr, Tufail ibn Amr were among the martyred. The total number of Muslim martyrs was 1,200 and the total number of disbelievers killed was 17, 000.
The deception of Majaa’ah. - al-Bidaayah 30/6
Abu-Bakr (RA) fell in prostration to Allah when he received news of the victory, but when he learnt of Majaa’ah’s deception and the marriage of Khalid to Majaa’ah’s daughter, he wrote Khalid a stern letter.
LESSONS FROM THE BATTLES OF APOSTASY:
Zaid ibn Thaabit narrated: “Abu-Bakr as-Siddeeq sent for me when the people of Yamaamah had been killed. I [went to him and] found Umar ibn al-Khattaab sitting with him. Abu-Bakr then said, "Umar has come to me and said: ‘Casualties were heavy among the Qurra'a of the Qur'an on the day of the Battle of Yamaamah, and I am afraid that more heavy casualties may take place among the Qurra’a on other battlefields, whereby a large part of the Qur'an may be lost. Therefore I suggest that you [Abu-Bakr] order that the Qur'an be collected.’ “I [Zaid] said to Umar, "How can I do something which Allah's Messenger did not do?" Umar said, "By Allah, that is a good deed.” Umar kept on urging me to accept his proposal until Allah opened my chest for it and I began to realize the good in the idea which Umar had realized. “Then Abu-Bakr said, “You are a wise young man and we do not have any bad suspicion about you, and you used to write the revelation for Allah's Messenger (PBUH), so you should search for the Qur'an and collect it in one book.”
“By Allah, if they had ordered me to shift one of the mountains, it would not have been heavier for me than this ordering me to collect the Qur'an. “Then I said to Abu-Bakr, "How can you do something which Allah's Messenger sall-Allahu alaihi wasallam did not do?" “Abu-Bakr replied, "By Allah, it is a good project." “Abu-Bakr kept on urging me to accept his idea until Allah opened my chest for what He had opened the chests of Abu-Bakr and Umar. So I started looking for the Qur'an and collecting it from palm-stalks, thin white stones and also from the men who knew it by heart. Then the complete manuscripts of the Qur'an remained with Abu-Bakr until he died, then with Umar till the end of his life, and then with Hafsa, the daughter of Umar.” - Bukhari 4986
During Abu-Bakr’s (RA) short rule of two and a half years he managed to fight and bring to submission the apostates and also open up fronts on Persian and Roman territory. The main motives for these conquests were the spread of the deen of Allah and the removal of oppression. Two armies were sent into Iraq from different points, one headed by Khalid ibn Walid, who was in Yamaamah at the time, and the other by Iyaad ibn Ghanam.
CONQUEST OF IRAQ:
Its name is derived from the fact that the Persians tied themselves to each other with chains as to make sure that no one could flee. Khalid and Hurmuz met in a duel; Khalid overpowered Hurmuz and killed him. The crown of Hurmuz was sent to Abu-Bakr (RA). - at-Tabari 165/4 The Muslims then ventured further into Persian territory and the battles of Mazaar, Waljah, Ulays and Heerah ensued. Khalid then wrote letters to the Persians; he said: “All Praise is due to Allah, Who created chaos in your system, slackened you and broke your unity. Had we not invaded your country it would have been disastrous for you. Now it is better for you to obey us. If you refuse to obey us, you will find us to be a people who love death as you love life.” These letters caused a stir in the Persian leadership; they rallied behind one leader against the Muslims and restored their unity. The battles of Anbaar, Dhaat-Uyoon, Ayn Tamr, Dawmatul Jandal, Husaid and Mussayig took place. During the battle of Firaad the Muslims faced a force made up of Persians, Romans and Arab tribes. They were all defeated. Khalid was by this time a legend. On the way back to Heerah from Firaad, Khalid decided to leave for hajj in secret. After hajj he returned to Heerah; Abu-Bakr (RA) sent him a letter reprimanding him for the manner of his hajj and ordering him to go to Shaam immediately and take command of the armies there.
CONQUEST OF SHAAM
A meeting was held with the Muslims with regards to a conquest into Roman territory and the decision was taken to advance. Four armies were sent into Shaam; the commanders were Yazeed ibn Abi-Sufyaan, Shurahbeel ibn Hasanah, Abu-Ubaydah ibn al-Jaraah and Amr ibn al-A’as. Many of them wrote back to Abu-Bakr (RA) stating that the Romans were too large a number and ready to fight. Khalid ibn Walid was sent to Shaam and the battle of Ajnaadain took place: the Muslims were victorious; the armies of the Muslims then gathered at Yarmouk to face the might of the Romans.
The Muslims numbered between 40 and 45 thousand under Khalid's command, while the Romans were 240,000 under Theodore. Khalid divided his army into about 36 to 40 squadrons. Maahaan, a Roman general, called to meet with Khalid. He said to him, “We know that it is only drought and hunger that have driven you out of your land; we will give each man 10 dinars, food and clothing: so go back and come and collect the same next year.”
Khalid replied to him, “It is not that which has driven us out, but the fact that we are a people who drink blood and we have heard that the tastiest blood is Roman blood. That is why we have come!” - al-Bidaayah 10/7 Commander George embraced Islam. The battle began in the morning and lasted the entire day. Abu-Sufyaan was the khateeb of the army, encouraging the Muslims to fight: “O helpers of Allah, come, be firm be firm.” Miqdaad recited Sura Anfaal to the soldiers. The Romans chained themselves to each other and this was eventually a disaster for them; about 80,000 fell off the cliffs. The total loss on the side of the Romans was around 120,000 and on the Muslims side were 3,000. This was a disastrous loss for the Romans; their empire in Shaam was severely weakened.
ABU-BAKR'S FOREIGN POLICY:
ILLNESS OF ABU BAKR (RA)
In Jumad al-Aakhir 13AH, Abu-Bakr (RA) fell very ill. He called the people and said to them, “my thoughts are that my end is near; I feel that I should choose a leader so as to avoid differing.” He made mashura with high-ranking Sahaabah and questioned them about Umar (RA). He then wrote a decree to be read to the people:
“This is a decree which I, Abu-Bakr, on my last hour in this world and first hour in the next, set forth, a time when even a disbeliever begins to believe, and a transgressor takes heed. I have appointed Umar ibn al-Khattaab as khalifah after me, so listen to him and obey him.”
Uthman read the decree to the people and the pledge of allegiance was given to Umar (RA) while Abu-Bakr (RA) was still alive. There was shura and ijma of all the companions in this matter. Abu-Bakr (RA)was ill for 15 days and then left this world for the next, his last words being: “Cause me to die as a Muslim and join me with the righteous” (Yusuf(12): 101) Asmaa bint Umais, his wife, did his ghusl and Umar (RA) led the funeral prayer over him. Uthman, Umar, Talha and his son Abdur-Rahman went down into his grave to lower his body. Abu-Bakr’s (RA)head was placed beside the shoulder of the Messenger (PBUH).
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