Friday Sermon delivered by Hazrat Mirza Masroor Ahmadaba, Head of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community on 30th March 2018.
Hazrat Jabir bin Abdullah was a companion of the Holy Prophet (sa). He was the son of Hazrat Abdullah bin ‘Amr bin Haram. I narrated the incidence of martyrdom of Hazrat Abdullah bin ‘Amr bin Haram a Friday sermon a few weeks ago. Hazrat Jabir bin Abdullah was the son of a this great companion. He had performed Bai’at at the occasion of the Second Pledge at al-Aqabah while he was a child.
At the time of his martyrdom, Hazrat Abdullah bin ‘Amr bin Haram, said to his son, “The debt, which I owe to one of the Jews, sell the fruits from the orchard and settle my loan after my martyrdom.”
Either to settle this load, or at a later date, there is a narration by Hazrat Jabir bin Abdullah (ra). He borrowed some money from a Jew against his orchard; unfortunately, the yield of fruit was very low that year and Hazrat Jabir bin Abdullah (ra)was unable to settle the loan. The Jew refused to give Hazrat Jabir bin Abdullah (ra) any more time to settle the loan and it appeared that the orchard will be repossessed by the Jew. When, the Holy Prophet (sa) was informed about this incident, the Holy Prophet (sa), personally spoke to the Jew requesting some more time to settle the loan. However, the Jew said that ‘O Abu Qasim! I will not give him any respite’. (He addressed the Holy Prophet (sa) in this manner.) Observing this conduct of the Jew, the Holy Prophet (sa) walked around the date palms once. He returned and spoke to the Jew once again. However, he refused again.” He says that in the meantime, “I took some dates from the garden and presented them to the Holy Prophet (sa), which he ate. Following this, he said that Jabir, ‘where in this garden is the hut or place where you rest?’ I informed the Holy Prophet (sa) upon which he said that ‘spread for me a mat there so that I may rest there for a few moments’”. He says, “I acted in accordance with his guidance. The Holy Prophet (sa) fell asleep there. When he woke up, I once again brought to him a handful of dates. He ate some of them, stood up and spoke to the Jew once again. However, he again refused. The Holy Prophet (sa) once again walked around the garden and said to me that ‘Jabir, harvest the dates and pay off the loan taken from the Jew’. I started to harvest the fruit and, in the meantime, the Holy Prophet (sa) remained standing in the date palms.” He says, “I harvested the fruit, paid off the entire loan taken form the Jew and some dates were left over. I informed the Holy Prophet (sa) of this good news upon which he said that ‘I bear witness that I am the Messenger of Allah. This miracle, this extraordinary incident transpired as Allah the Almighty hears my prayers and blesses my endeavours.’”
Thus, where we observe in this incident the blessings of the fruit as a result of the kindness and the acceptance of the prayers of the Holy Prophet (sa), we also witness the anxiousness of the companions in relation to paying off their debts. Thus, this is the spirit, which should be the distinctive characteristic of a true believer. Once, a companion passed away while he was in debt by two Dinar and the Holy Prophet (sa) refused to personally offer his funeral prayer. Upon this, another companion took the responsibility of paying off his debt as a result of which the Holy Prophet (sa) led his funeral prayer. The following day, the Holy Prophet (sa) questioned the person who took this responsibility saying that “the responsibility of two Dinar, which you took upon yourself, have you paid it or not?” Hence, this is the importance of paying off debts and this is the concern one should have.
Then, another narration by Hazrat Jabir is found that the Holy Prophet (sa) said that if a believer leaves some wealth and property, it is received by his family and relatives. Furthermore, if he leaves a debt and his property and the wealth he leaves behind are not sufficient in order to pay off the debt, or in the case that he leaves behind children without any means of support, his orphaned children and the payment of the debt will be taken care of. In other words, the government and those in authority will take the responsibility for this. The upbringing of orphans and making arrangements for their expenditures have greatly been emphasised in the Holy Qur’an. For this very reason has the Holy Prophet (sa) said that this is the responsibility of the government.
May Allah Almighty elevate the status of these Companions. I often share various incidents such as these. May He enable us to continue in their virtues and apply them in our own lives.
After this short sermon, I shall now speak about two sincere individuals. First is Respected Bilal Adalbi sahib from Syria. He got severely injured in a car accident which occurred a few days ago and passed away on 17 March 2018 at 1:30am during the night. The cause of death was heart failure. - ‘Surely, to Allah we belong and to Him shall we return’. Bilal sahib was born in 1978. When he was 17 years old, an Ahmadi brother found him some work in Doctor Musalim Mutrabi sahib’s company. There he was introduced to the Jama’at and Ahmadis and took the Oath of Allegiance a short while thereafter. Doctor sahib says: “ This year after returning from Qadian, I began to offer prayers with the group that would go to Bilal sahib’s house for prayers. Bilal sahib welcomed me with immense enthusiasm due to the fact that he had accepted Ahmadiyyat through me.’”
The local president writes about him: “Bilal sahib owned a sports garment store and would assist those brothers in need by offering them clothes. He would do so even to the extent if his store did not have any clothes, he would purchase from somewhere else in order to provide for others. He was a very honorable person. He would take great care of his children. He admitted them in the best schools.”
He further says:“We were offering prayers at his home two days prior to his demise. The finance secretary informed us that Bilal sahib had paid all due payments towards Wassiyat, Tehrik-e-Jadid and Waqfe-Jadid. In fact, he had purchased a new piece of land which he also included in his Wassiyat. He served others, took great care in his observance of prayers and worship and had a deep attachment with Khilafat. He would listen to every sermon.”
He leaves behind an eleven-year-old son and a twelve-year-old daughter. His elder brother is an Ahmadi and lives in Germany, but his other two brothers and a sister are not Ahmadis and therefore he faced a lot of opposition from them. However, God Almighty influenced them in such a way that at the time of the funeral prayer, his brother said that, “you Ahmadis can offer the funeral prayer and you can offer it inside our mosque – there is no restriction.” He (local president) states. “Thus, by the grace of God Almighty many people offered his funeral prayer behind us.”
The second person who I shall mention about is Salima Mir Sahiba, the former president of Lajna Imaillah Karachi. She was the wife of Abdul Qadir Dar Sahib. She also passed away on 17th March, 2018 at the age of 90. Her father was a companion (of the Promised Messiah (as)), Mir Ilahi Bakhsh Sahib from Sheikhupura, Gujrat. Salima Mir Sahiba got married in 1946 and after the partition of the sub-continent, she moved to Karachi. In 1961 they moved to Iran where there were a few Ahmadi household and they made arrangements for the Friday prayer and other gatherings. Her husband passed away in 1964 and she returned to Karachi and stayed with her brother, Mir Imanullah Sahib. While bringing up eight children, she also continued to pursue her studies and completed her studies up to bachelor level. Along with this she started to work in the Lajna office. In 1981 when the Muntizima Committee was formed, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih III (rh) appointed her as the president of the committee.
She started her work for Lajna in 1961 from Iran and then Pakistan. In 1986 when Lajna Karachi were re-joined with the central Lajna, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IV (rh) appointed her has the president of the Lajna for Karachi. She served as the president for Lajna Karahi from 1986 to 1997. During her tenure, a lot of work was done in regard to the publication of the books and 60 books were published and two magazines. The classes for Dai-illa’Allah, preaching, were started. Upon this Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IV (rh) expressed his great happiness and stated, “By the grace of God Almighty, you are doing an excellent job and prayers come from the heart for you. May God bless your long-life, health and happiness. And may He greatly reward those assisting you in this world and the next.”
There are many accounts in regards to her work and Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IV (rh) and Hazrat Khalifatul Masih III (rh) greatly admired her work. In one letter, Hazrat Khalifatul Masih IV rh) wrote: “I received your report for Lajna Karachi and your message of great devotion. I honour your expression of devotion and sincerity from the core of my heart. I am always praying to God Almighty for your success and may He cause those days to return with even greater glory the memories of which are very dear to me.”
Salima Mir Sahiba became a widow at the age of 36. Her daughter says that she never heard any kind of words of impatience and ungratefulness expressed by her. She would remain grateful to God Almighty in all circumstances. She would always think positively and also wanted to see this in her children. Her daughter says: “when my husband was terminally ill, my mother i.e. Salima Mir Sahiba was with me and the first thing she gave me was a copy of the Promised Messiah’s book, Malfuzat. She then said, ‘after your father passed away, I have spent my life with this Malfuzat and left everything with God.’ She would also say that the love of God should be superior over all other relationships of love.” Her daughter says further says, “When my husband was nearing his last moments, the doctors asked me to sign but I could not control myself and began to cry and whilst crying my voice became louder. My mother also heard this and at the time I was extremely distressed.” She says, “when I was about to leave the hospital, I went to my mother (Salima Mir Sahiba) and in a very strong tone she said, ‘you are my daughter and my daughter cannot show such impatience and why did such a loud cry come from you?’ She then said that the patience displayed at the very first instance is true patience because everyone displays patience later on.” Her daughter further states, “she then told me that my husband belongs to God, He is the one who gave him to you and now has taken him back.”
Her children said that she would always give this advice in Punjabi that “never detach yourselves from the Khalifa and always hold fast to Khilafat”. She would pay great attention to observing purdah, veil. Wherever she would see a shortcoming in terms of purdah, she would explain in a wonderful manner that others would not be offended. One of her granddaughters had a driving test in London and the instructor was a man. So Salima Sahiba sat with her saying I will not allow you to go alone with a man. Others scoffed at this but she paid no attention to the world.
Whenever someone would get a headscarf or Niqab she would always say there is a book for Lajna in which there are all the instructions of the Khulafa (Caliphs), its name is: ‘Flowers for those who cover themselves’. So she would say that if you wish to buy a flower then you must also buy an Aurni - a garment used to cover oneself. The flower is for the one who covers up. One daughter, in fact her granddaughter says that when I was about to get married my grandmother handed me the book of Hazrat Nawab Mubaraka Begum Sahiba, underlining the advice in the chapter about ‘Sending off of Daughters’ and told me to read this again and again.
She says that my grandmother did not like unmarried women attending any function which ran till late night. Nowadays many women write to me saying they wish to spend the night at someone’s house. This is absolutely wrong, and our young women should avoid doing so. She says that if ever we missed the Fajr prayer, our grandmother would not speak to us the whole day and this was her biggest punishment for us.
Amtul Bari Nasri Sahiba says, “God Almighty enabled sister Salima Mir Sahiba to serve Lajna Karachi for a very long time. Though she no longer remains in this world but those who have been trained by her and are serving Lajna in various parts of the world will thus keep her name and works alive. Her name is associated with the example of doing excellent work. She would greatly oversee the work and would teach how to do the work. She was not concerned about her own praise for her name, rather she wanted to those working with her to be trained in how to do the work. She greatly encouraged her team when they were working for the publication of the books.
“She would deal with all matters rationally and quietly. If one would confide in her about something personal, one would never be afraid that it would be disclosed. She would keep matters a secret.” Amatul Bari Nasir Sahiba then writes that, “She managed to keep all the secrets to herself and this was a great attribute of hers.” This is something that is found less and less today even amongst men.
Amatul Noor Sahiba from Karachi writes: “Salima Mir Sahiba was an affectionate and selfless woman. She had a poised sense of character and would always keep herself in the background, and instead promote the works of others. She was always smiling and a cheerful person. Alongside a beautiful countenance, God Almighty bestowed her a beautiful and gentle heart.”
Every person who has written about her has said the same things, that she was a very honourable lady who always demonstrated a great resolve and patience. She was a model of excellent morals who had a strong connection with Khilafat and always encouraged others to also establish a connection with Khilafat. She would carry out virtuous deeds and advise others to do the same. She would advise everyone in the same manner, whether they were close associates or others. It was not the case that she would only advise her own children. She always guided her daughters in all matters and had firm belief in God Almighty. She was someone who was always content with the Will of God Almighty. May Allah the Almighty elevate her status and may He enable her children – i.e. her daughters – to further advance her virtuous deeds.
I will lead both of their funeral prayers after the Friday prayers.