Importance of Reading History of Prophet Muhammad

Reading the life history of the Prophet Muhammad is not limited to spelling out the names of events, places, dates and other formalist-textual things. But, there is a more substantive purpose and value than any past event, in which the Prophet (s) became his main figure.

The life history of the Prophet Muhammad or commonly termed as Sirah Nabawiyah, is a series of life stories of the Prophet Muhammad from the moment he was born until the end of age. In fact, some historians write long before the prophet’s birth.

what is the purpose of reading the life history of the Prophet? To know the full event name of the date and place? Or what?

reading history including the life history of the Prophet Muhammad, not limited to knowing the textual things above. Reading history can not be separated from the name of events, dates, places and other textual issues. But, behind the data, there are substantive things that we can quote.

In fiqh al-Sirah (pp. 21-22), Shaykh Sa’id Ramadhan al-Buthi (d. 2013 AD) explains the more basic objectives in studying the life history of the Prophet (s). He said, there are at least five purposes that we need to apply in reading Sirah Nabawiyah.

First, understanding the personality of Prophet Muhammad through the course of his life.

This is important because not only introduces the Messenger of Allah as a genius and respected figure among his people, but also knows the Prophet Muhammad as a messenger of God who is legitimized by revelations that come down directly from His Presence.

Second, by knowing the life story of the Muhammad, one will find a noble exemplary figure in all aspects of life.

Undoubtedly, all the deeds of life have been done by the Messenger of Allah. That is what Allah has asserted in the verses of the Qur’an which reads,

لَقَدْ كَانَ لَكُمْ فِي رَسُولِ اللَّهِ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ

It means, “Surely in the Messenger of Allah there is a good example for you.” Qs. Al-Ahzab [33]: 21)

Interpreting the verse above, Ibn Katheer explained that this verse is the most important basis in making the Messenger of Allah as a role model. Both in speech, deeds and all the twists and turns of life.

Therefore, Allah commands people to follow the Prophet (s) during the battle of Ahzab in terms of patience, firmness, alertness, and struggle, and still waiting for a way out of Allah swt. See Tafseer Ibn Katheer, juz’ 3, p. 483.

Third, make it easier to understand the Qur’an,

because most of the verses of the Qur’an have been explained by the hadiths of the Prophet. The story of Sa’ad ibn Hisham ibn Amir confirms this.

Sa’ad once asked Siti ‘Aisha about the prophet’s morals. Then Siti ‘Aisha replied,

كَانَ خُلُقُهُ الْقُرْآنَ أَمَا تَقْرَأُ الْقُرْآنَ قَوْلَ اللَّهِ عَزَّ وَجَلَّ (وَإِنَّكَ لَعَلَى خُلُقٍ عَظِيمٍ)

It means, “His morality is the Qur’an, do you not read the Qur’an, the Word of Allah Azza wa Jalla:  and indeed you are above the great ethics.” (HR. Ahmad)

Fourth, by studying the life story of the Prophet Muhammad, one will be able to see a complete exemplary portrait in Islamic teachings.

Whether it is a matter of religion, law, or morals. These three components are certainly in the Prophet (s).

History of Islam : The Birth of Prophet Muhammad

Fifth, an example for the da’i (preachers) in the life of the Messenger of Allah.

We know that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) was sent as a preacher among his people. The Prophet (pbuh) is the most successful da’i in history.

In fact, Shaykh Musthafa as-Shiba’i compiled a book of the history of the Prophet (s) that outlines the points of study that can be used as examples for preachers in the book entitled Sirah al-Nabawiyah Durus wa ‘Ibar.

Such are some important objectives that become a reference in studying the life story of the Prophet Muhammad saw. Reviewing Sirah Nabawiyah, means reviewing all the details of the life of the greatest figure with a complete example of life for each breath of life.

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