THE EXPEDITION OF ABDULLAH IBN JHASH: A ROOT CAUSE OF THE GREAT BATTLE OF BADR
Ibn Ibn Ishaq narrated that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) sent Abdullah Ibn Jahsh Ibn Ri’ab Al-Asdi in the month of Rajab on his return from the first Badr. He (peace be upon him) sent with him eight men from Al-Muhajreen.
Ibn Ishaq continued saying that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) wrote for Ibn Jahsh a letter and ordered him not to look at it until he had journeyed for two days, to carry out what he was ordered to do, and not to compel any one of his companions to do so. Having journeyed for two days, Ibn Jahsh opened the letter which said:
“When you read my letter proceed forward until you reach Nakhlah between Mecca and At-Ta’if so as to lie in wait there for Quraish and find out to us their news.”
When he read the letter he said, “I’m the one who listens (the orders of his leader) and obeys.” Then he told his companions what the letter said and declared, ” He - the Messenger of Allah - has forbidden me to force any on of you do so; thus if anyone wishes for the martyrdom, let him go back; as for me I’m going to carry out what the Messenger of Allah has ordered me”
He, subsequently, proceeded forward and so did all his companions. He journeyed along the Hijaz until at a mine called Bahran above Al-Furu, Sa’d Ibn Abi Waqqas and Utbah Ibn Ghazwan lost the camel which they were riding by turns, so they stayed behind to look for it, while Abdullah and the rest of his companions proceeded until they reached Nakhlah. A caravan of Quraish. in the meanwhile, passed by them. The Quraish men in that caravan were Amr Ibn Al-Hadrami, Uthman Ibn Abdullah Ibn Al- Makhzumi and his brother Naufal, and Al-Hakam Ibn Kaisan freedman of Hisham Ibn Al-Mughirah.
When the caravan saw them Ibn Jahsh and his companion they were afraid of them because they had camped near them. Akashah, however, appeared to them whit his shaved hair, and when they saw him they felt safe and Ammar said, ” They would cause you no harm he thought that they were pilgrims.”
On their part, they Companion took council among themselves, for this was the last day of Rajab, and they said, “If you leave them alone tonight they will get into the prohibited Area and will be safe from you; and if you kill them, you will kill them in the prohibited Month.” Consequently, they were hesitant and feared to attack them. Then, they encouraged each other and decided to kill as many as they could of them and take what they had. Waqid Ibn Abdullah shot Amr Ibn Al-Hadrami with an arrow which caused the letter to die” Uthman Ibn Abdullah and Al-Hakim Ibn Kisan were captured while Naufal Ibn Abdullah escaped.
Abdullah Ibn Jahsh and his companions proceeded back to Medina with the caravan and the two prisoners until they reached the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).
Someone of Abdullah’s family reported that he said to his companions, “A fifth of waht we have taken belongs to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him).’ This was before the revelation of the Qur’anic verse that decides the way of dividing the booty. Therefore, Abdullah set apart of the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), a fifth of the caravan, and divided the rest among his companions.
When the Qur’an came down with the way that should adhered to in dividing the booty, it was in agreement with what Abdullah Ibn Jahsh has done.
When they came to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), he said, “I have not command you to fight in the prohibited Month,” and he held the caravan and the two prisoners in suspense and refused to take anything from. When the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said this, the men were in despair and thought that they were doomed. Their Muslim brothers reproached them for what they had done. Quraish, likewise, said that Muhammad and his Companions have violated the Prohibited Month, shed blood therein, taken booty, and captured men. Muslims, who were in Mecca, defended them, saying, “They had done it in the month of Sha’ban.” The Jews turned this raid into an omen against the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) by saying that Amr Ibn Al-Hadrami whom waqid Ibn Abdullah had killed meant Amaratul-harb (War is present), and Waqid meant Waqadatul-harab (war is kindled).
Allah, Most High, turned this against them, not for them; and when there was much talk about it Allah sent down to his Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) the following Qur’nic verse,
“They ask thee concerning fighting in Prohibited Month. Say, ‘Fighting therein is a grave (offence). But graver is it in the sight of Allah to prevent access to the path of Allah, to deny Him, to Prevent access to the sacred Mosque, and drive out its members. Tumult and oppression is worse than slaughter. Nor will they cease fighting you until they turn you back from your faith if they can. (Al-Baqrah: 217) “
This Qur’anic verse means that if you have killed in the Prohibited Month, they have kept you back form the way of Allah with their unbelief in Him, and from the sacred mosque, and have driven you from it when you were its people. This is a more serious of them whom you have salin.
“Tumult and oppression is worse then slaughter,”
means that the unbelievers used to seduce the Muslim in his religion until they made him return to unbelief after believing, and that is worse in the sight of Allah than killing. They used to persist in doing so without repentance. Allah, Most High, says,
“Nor will they cease fighting you until they turn you back from faith if they can.”
Ibn Ishaq continued, saying that when the Glorious Qur’an came down about that and Allah relieved that Muslims of their anxiety in the matter, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) took the caravan and the prisoners. Quraish sent to him redeem Uthman and Al-Hakam, and the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, ” We will not let you redeem until our two companions come, meaning Sa’d and Utbah, for we fear on them on your account. if you kill them, we will kill your friends. So, when Sa’d and Utbah turned up, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) let them redeem them.
As fir Al-Hakam, he became a good Muslim and stayed with the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) until he was killed a martyr at Bi’r Ma’unah. Uthman went back to Mecca and died there as unbeliever.
Ibn Ishaq added that when Abdullah and his companions were relieved of their anxiety when the Qur’an come down, they were anxious for reward and therefore asked the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) saying, ” Oh Messenger of Allah, can we hope that it will count as a raid for which we shell be given the reward of the Mujahideen?” Then, Allah, Most High, revealed the following Qur’anic verse,
“Those who believe and those who suffered exiles and fought ( and strove and struggled) in the path of Allah, they have the hope of the Mercy of Allah: and Allah is Oft-forgiving, Most Merciful. (Al-Baqrah:218)”
In the verse, Allah gave them the greatest hopes therein.
THE OCCASION OF THE BATTLE
In more than one Qur’aic veres, Allah, Most High, refers to the Battle of Bader. For example, He, Most High, says,
“And Allah had helped you at Badr, when ye were helpless: then fear Allah: thus may ye show your gratitude. (Al-Imran: 123) ”
“Just as thy lord ordered thee out of thy house in truth, even though a party among the believers disliked it, disputing with thee concerning the truth after it was made manifest, as if they were being driven to death while they see it. Behold! Allah promised you one of the two parties, that it should be yours: ye wished that the one unarmed should be yours, but Allah willed to establish the truth according to His words, and to cut off the roots of the unbelievers;- that He might establish Truth and prove Falsehood false, distasteful though it be to those in guilt (Al-Anfal: 5-8)”
The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) heard that Abu Sufyan Ibn Harb was coming from Syria with a large caravan of Quraish, containing their money and merchandise, accompanied by some thirty or forty men, of whom were Makhrammah Ibn Naoufal and Amr Ibn Al-Aas.
The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) summoned the Muslims and said,
“This is the caravan of Quraish which contains their money. Go out to attack it; perhaps Allah will give it as a prey”
People answered his call; some eagerly, others reluctantly, because they had out thought that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) would go to war.
When he got near Al-Hijaz, Abu Sufyan was seeking news, from the riders he met until he got news that Muhammad has called his Companions against him and his caravan. He took alarm at that and hired Damdam Ibn Amr Al-Ghafari to go to Mecca, ordering him to call out Quraish in defense of their property, and to tell them that Muhammad was laying in wait for it with his Companions. So Damdam left for Mecca at full speed.
On reaching Quraish, Damdam cried out “O Quraish, the transport camels, the transport camels! Muhammad and his Companions are lying in wait for your property, which is whit Abu Sufwan. I do not think that you will overtake it. Help! Help!”
Answering the call of Damdam, the Quraish men said, “DO Muhammad and his Companions think this is going to like the caravan of Ibn Hadrami.” Every man of them either went himself or sent someone in his place. So all went; not one of their nobles remained behind except Abu Lahab Ibn Abudul-Mutalib.
There were nine hundred and fifty men and two hundred horsed the women also went a long to cheer the men on with their singing.
On the other side, according to Ibn Ishaq, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) set out whit his followers. It was the month of Ramadan. Ibn Umm Maktum was ordered by the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) to lead the Muslims in prayer and Abu Lubabah was lead the Muslims in prayer and Abu Lubabah was appointed as the ruler of Medina until the return of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him). The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) gave the flag, which was a white flag, to Mus’ab Ibn Umair.
The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was proceeded by two black flags, one with Ali Ibn Abi Talib called Al-Uqab, and the other with one of the Ansar. According to Ibn Hisham, the latter was Sa’d Ibn Mu’adh. The Muslim army had seventy camels on which men rode on turns. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) with Ali Ibn Abi Talib and Marthad Ibn Abi Marthab ride one camel in turns.
MUSLIM WENT OUT TO MEET THE CARAVAN
Al-Bukhari narrated on the authority of Ka’b Ibn Malik that K’ab said, “I never failed to join the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) in any of his battles except in Tabuk. However, I did not take part in the Battle of Badr, but none, who failed to take part in, was blamed, for the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) Quraish, but Allah caused them (i.e., Muslims) to meet their enemy unexpectedly (whit no pervious intention).
Ibn Ishaq said that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) took the read to Mecca by the upper route from Medina, then by Al-Aqiq Dhul-Hulaifah, and Ulat Al-Jaish. Then he (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) passed turban, Malal, Ghamisu l-Hamam, Sukhayratu ‘I-Yamam, As-sayalah, then by the ravine of Ar-rauha to Shunakah, which is the direct route, until at Irqu-I-Zabyah he met a nomad. The Companions asked him about the news. People, then, said to him. “Salute the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)”. The man asked, “Have you got the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) with you?” When they answered him that they had, he said, “If you are the Messenger of Allah, then tell me what is in the belly of my she-camel here”.
Salamah Ibn Salamah Ibn Waqsh said to the nomad: “Don’t question the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), but come to me and I will tell you about it. You have leapt upon her and she has in her belly a little goat from you!’ The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “Enough! You have spoken obscenely to the man.’ Then he turned away from Salamha. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) stopped at Sajsaj which is the well of Ar-Rauha’; then went on to Al-Munsaraf, leaving the Maccan road on the left and went to the right to Al-Naziyah making for Badr. Arrived in its neighbor hood, he crossed a valley called Ruhaqan between Al-Naziyah and the pass of Al-Safra’; Then along the pass; then he debauched from it until when near Zl-Safra’ he sent Basbas Ibn Amr Al-Juhani. an ally of Ibn Sa’idah, and Adi Ibn Az-Zughaba’ Al-Juhani, an ally of Ibn An-Najjar, to Badr to scout for news about Abu Sufyan and his caravan.
Ibn Ishaq continued, saying that having sent them on ahead, he moved off and when he got to Al-Safra’, which is a village between two mountains; he asked what their names were. He was told they were Muslih and Mukhir. He asked about their inhabitants and was told that they were Banul-Nar and Banul-Hruq, Two clans of Banul-Ghifar. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) drew ill omen from their names and so disliked them that he refused to pass between them, so he lift them and Al-Safra’ on his left and went to the right to a valley called Dhafiran which he crossed and then hatted. News come to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) that Quraish had set out to protect their caravan. Having delivered these news to his Companions, he (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) asked their advice. Abu Bakr and then Umar (may Allah be pleased with them) got up and spoke well. Then, Al-Miqdad got up and said, “O Messenger of Allah! Go where Allah orders you for we are with you. We will not say as the children of Israel said to Moses, “You and your Lord go and fight and we will stay at home,” but you and your Lord go and fight, and we will fight with you. By Allah! If you were to take us to Bark Al-Ghimad. we would fight resolutely with you against its defenders until you gained it.” The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) thanked him and prayed Allah on his behalf. Then, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “O people! Give me advice,” by which he meant the Ansar; this is because they formed the majority, and because when they had paid homage to him in Al-Aqabah they stipulated that they were not responsible for his safety until he entered their territory, and that when he was there they would protect him as they did their wives and children. So, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was afraid that the Ansar would not fell obliged to help him unless he was attacked by an enemy in Medina and that they would not fell it incumbent upon them to go with him against an enemy outside their territory.
Having heard this, Sa’d Ibn Mu’adh said, “It seems as if you mean us,’ and when he said that he did, Sa’d said ” We believe in you, we declare your truth, and we witness that what you have brought is the truth, and we have given you our word and agreement to hear and obey; so go where you wish, we are with you; and by Allah, if you were to ask us to cross this sea and you plunged into it, we would plunge into it with you, not a man would stay behind. We do not hate that you might order us to face your enemy tomorrow. We, in fact, are patient in war and trustworthy in combat. It may be that Allah will make you see what pleases you from us; so take us along with Allah’s blessing.”
The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was delighted at Sa’d’s words which greatly encouraged him. Then he said,
” Go forward; I give you glad tiding that Allah has promised me one of the two good things: martyrdom or victory. By Allah, It is as though I see the place were the people (enemies) would be killed.“
Ibn Mas’ud commented in the above scene, saying, “I witnessed Al–Miqdad ibn AL-Aswad in a scene which would have been dearer to me than anything had I been the hero of that scene. He (i.e., Al-Miqdad) came to the prophet (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) while the prophet (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) was urging the Muslims to fight with the pagans. Al-Miqdad said, ‘We will not say as the people of Moses said: Go you and your Lord and fight you two. But we shell fight on your right and on your left and in front of you and behind you.’ I saw the face of the prophet (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) getting bright with happiness, for that saying delighted him.”
Afterwards, as Ibn Isaq reported, the prophet (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) journeyed from Dhafran and went over passes called Asafir. Then he dropped down from them to a town called Ad-Diyah and left Al-Hanan on the right. This was a sand-hill like a large mountain. Then he (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) stopped near Badr and he, and one of his Companions Ibn Hisham said this Companion was Abu Bakr until he stopped by an old man of the Bedouin and inquired about, Quraish and about Muhammad and his Companions. and what he had herd about them. The old man said, “I won’t tell you before you tell me which party you belong to.” The Messenger Of Allah (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) said, “If you tell us we will tell you.” The man said, “Should this be for that?” Yes, he replied. The man said, ” I have heard that Muhammad and his Companions went out on such-and-such a day. If that is true, today they are in such-and-such a place, referring to the place in which the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) actually was; and I heard that Quraish went out in such-and-such a day, and if this is true, today they are in such-and-such a place. ‘meaning the one in which they actually were. “When he had finished he said, “Of whom are you?’ the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) said, “We are from Ma.”
Then he left him, while the old man was saying, “What dose ‘from Ma’ mean? Is it from the water of Iraq? Ibn Hisham said, “This man was known as Sheikh Sufyan Ad-Dimiri.” The Messenger of Allah(peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) returned to his Companions: and when night fell he sent ” Ali Ibn Abi Talib, Az-zubair and Sa’d Ibn Abi Waqqas with a number of his Companions to the well at Badr in quest of news of both parties, according to what Ibn Ishaq narrated. Ibn Ishaq added that they fell in with some water-camels of Quraish, among whom were Aslam, a slave of Banu Al-Hajaj, and Arid Abu Yassar, a slave of Banu Al- Aas Ibn Sa’d and they brought them along and questioned them while the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) was standing praying.
They said, “We are the water-men of Quraish: they sent us to get them water.” The Companions were displeased at their report, for they hoped that they would belong to Abu Sufyan, so they beat them. When they had beaten them, the two men said, “We belong to Abu Sufyan: so the Companions let them go.
Having completed his Prayer, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) said, “When they told you the truth, you beat them: and when they lied you them alone. They told the truth; they do belong to Quraish. Tell me you two about Quraish!” The two men replied, “They are behind this hill which you see on the farthest side.” The hill was Al-Aqnaqal. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) asked them how many tehy were, and when they said, “Many,” he asked for the umber, but they did not know; so he asked them how many camels they slaughtered every day, and the said nine or ten, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) said, ‘The people are between nine hundred and a thousand.’ Then asked how many nobles of Quraish were among them. They said, Utbah, Shaybah, Al-Bukhtari Ibn Hisham, Hakim Ibn Hizam, Nawfal Ibn Khuwalid, Al-Harith Ibn Amir, Al-Nadr Ibn Al-Harith, Zam ‘ah Ibn Al-Aswad, Abu Jahl Ibn Hasham, Umaiyyah Ibn Khalaf, Nabih and Munabh, the two sons of Al-Haja, Sahil Ibn Amr and amr Ibn Wudd.”
The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) went to the people and said,
“This Mecca has thrown to you the pieces of its liver!“
Basbab and Adi has gone on until they reached Badr, and halted on a hill near the water, then they took an old skin to fetch water while Majdi Ibn Amr Al-Juhani was by the water. Adi and Basbab heard two girls from the village discussing a debt, and one said to the other, ‘The caravan will come tomorrow or the day after and I will work for them and pay you what I owe you. ‘Majdi said, “You are right,” and he made arrangements whit them. Adi and Basbab overheard this and rode off to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessing of Allah be upon him) and told him what they had overheard. Ibn Ishaq continued saying that Abu Sufyan went forward to get in front of the caravan as a precautionary measure until he came down to the water and asked Majdi if he had noticed anything. He replied that he has seen nothing untoward: merely two riders had stopped on the hill and taken water away in a skin. Abu Sufyan came to the spot where has halted, picked up some camel dung and broke it in pieces and found that it containde date-stones. ‘By Allah,’ he said, ‘This is the fodder of Yathirb.’ He returned at once to his companions and changed the caravan’s direction from the road to the seashore leaving Badr of the left, traveling as quickly as possible. Quraish, on the other hand, advanced forward until Al-Juhafah. On his part, when Abu Sufyan saaw that he has saved his caravan he sent word to Quraish, “Since you come out to save your caravan, your men, and your property. And Allah has delivered them, go back.” Abu Jahl said, “By Allah, we will not go back until we have been to Badr - Badr was the site of one of the Arab fairs where they used to hold a market every year - for we will spend three days there, slaughter camels and feast and drink wine, and the girls shall play for us. The Arabs will hear that we have come and gathered together, and will respect us in future! So come on!”
However, Al-Akhnas Ibn Shuraiq Al-Thaqafi, an ally of Banu Zuhrah, refused to join Quraish in doing this since Allah had saved the caravan. Therefore, Banu Zuhrah returned with Al-Akhnas and these two tribes were not represented at all. Also, there was some discussion between Talib Ibn Abu Talib, who was with the army, and some of Quraish. The latter said, “We know, O Banu Hashim, that if you have come out with us your heart is with Muhammad.” So, Talib and some others returned to Mecca. Quraihs went on until they halted on the farther side of the valley behind Al-Aqanqal. The bad of valley - Yalyal - was between Badr and Al- Aqanqal, the hill behind which lay Quraish, while the wells at Badr were on the side of the valley bed nearest to Medina.
The Glorious Qur’an describes that situation, saying,
“Remember ye were on the hither side of the valley, and they on the farther side, and the caravan on the lower ground than ye. Even if ye had made it a mutual appointment of meet, ye would certainly have failed in the appointment. (Al-Anfal: 42) “
Allah, Most High, sent a rain which turned the soft sand of the valley into a compact surface which did not hinder the Messenger’s movements, but gravely restricted the movements of Quraish. The Qur’an speaks about that situation, saying,
“He caused rain to descend on you from heaven, to clean you therewith, to remove from you the stain of satan, to strengthen your hearts, and to plant your feet firmly therewith. (Al-Anfal: 11) “
Moreover, Allah, Most High, sent down victory upon them in his saying,
“Remember thy Lord inspired the angles (with the message): ‘I am with you: give firmness to the believers: I will instill terror into the hearts of the unbelievers: Smite ye above their necks and smite all their finger-tips of them. That is because they contended against Allah and His Messenger: If any contend Allah against Allah His Messenger. Allah is strict in punishment. (Al-Anfal: 12-13) “
This was on the night of Friday, 17th Ramadan, 2 AH. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) passed the whole night praying and invoking Allah in prostration saying mostly,
“O the living the Eternal.”
He (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) persisted in calling Allah with this Du’a.
Ibn Ishaq said that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) went forth to hasten his Companions to the water and when he got to the nearest water of Badr the halted. Al-Hubab Ibn Mundhir said, “O Messenger of Allah! Is this a place which Allah has ordered you to occupy, so that we can neither advance nor withdraw from it, or is it a matter of opinion and military tactics?”
When he replied that it was the latter he pointed out that it was not the place to stop but that they should go on to the water nearest to the enemy and halt there, stop up the wells beyond it, and construct a cistern so that they would have plenty of water; then they could fight their enemy who would have nothing to drink. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) agreed that this was an excellent plan and they acted accordingly.
Ibn Ishaq added that Sa’d Ibn Mu`ahd said, “O Prophet of Allah, let us make a booth (of palm branches) for you to occupy and have your riding camels standing by; then we will meet the enemy and if Allah give us the victory that is what we desire; if the worst occurs you can mount you camels and join our people who are left behind, for they are just as deeply attached to you as we are. Had they thought that you would be fighting they would not have stayed behind. Allah will protect you by them; they will give you camels and fight with you.”
The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) thanked him and blessed him. Then a booth was constructed for the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and remained there. Quraish, having marched forth at daybreak, now come on. When The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) was them descending from the hill Aqanqal into the valley he cried,
“O Allah! He come Quraish in their vanity and pride contending with you and calling your Messenger a liar. O Allah! Grant the help, which you have promised me. Destroy them his morning!“
Before uttering these words he had seen among the enemy Utbah Ibn Rabi’ah mounted on a red camel of his, and said,
“If there is any good in any of them, it will be with the man on the red camel: if they obey him, they will take the right way.“
When Quraish encamped, some of them, Hakim Ibn Hizam was one of them, went to the cistern of the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) to drink. “Let them be!’ he said; and all men that drank of it on that day was killed, except Hakim, who afterwards become a good Muslim and used to say, when he was earnest in his oath, “Nay, by him who saved me on the day of Badr.” Regarding the number of Muslims at Badr, Al-Bakhari reported that Al-Bara’ said that the Companions of the Prophet Muhammad who took part in Badr, told me that their number was that of Saul’s (i.e.,Talut’s) companions who crossed the river of Jordan with him and they were over three-hundred and ten men. By Allah, none crossed the river with him but a believer.” Al-Bara’ also narrated that I and Ibn Umar were considered too young in the battle of Badr, and the number of the Al-Muhajirrun worriers were over sixty (men) and the Ansar were over 249.
About Badr, the Glorrous Qur’an speaks, saying,
“Remember in thy Allah Showed them to thee as few: if He had shown them to thee as many, ye would surely have disputed in (your) decision: but Allah saved (you): for He knoweth well the (secrets) of (all) hearts. And remember when ye met, He showed them to you as few in your eyes, and He made you appear as contemptible in their eyes: that Allah might accomplish a matter already decided. (Al-Anfal: 22-43) “
Al-Amaui commented on the first Qura’nic verse saying that on the night of Badr, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) slept and ordered his men not to fight until he permit them to do so. The Abu Bakr (my Allah be pleased with him) woke him up, saying, “They (Quraish) become so nears!” The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) got up after Allah had made him to see the army of Quraish in a vision. Out f divine wisdom, both parties saw the other a small in number. This is clear in the aforementioned Qura’nic verses.
According to Ibn Ishaq and other scholars of Siyrah, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) preferred the men to fight in ranks. As they prepared to march he noticed that someone had stepped out in front of the others; the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) prodded him in the side with an arrow, saying, “Stand in line!” The men, Sawad exclaimed, “you have hurt me, O Messenger of Allah! Allah has sent you to be just and good. “On his part, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) lifted his shirt and said, “Then do the same to me.” The man approached and kissed him on the spot instead, saying, “O Messenger of Allah, you see what is before us and I may not survive the battle. If this is my last time with you, I want the last thing I do in life to be this.” Shortly after he went into battle, Sawad died a martyr. Having examined the ranks, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) then went to the booth, Abu Bakr stayed with him, while Sa’d Ibn Mu’adh, with several of the Ansar, stood outside guarding the booth.
THE KINDLE OF WAR
According to the scholars of Siyrah, the battle began in a single combat when one of Quraish, Al-Aswad Ibn Abd Al-Asad Al-Makhzumi, swore that he would drink from the Muslims’ reservoir and then destroy it, or die in the attempt. Hamzah, the Prophet’s uncle, come forward to face him and killed him. Three of the most important of Quraish, Utbah Ibn Rabi’ah, his brother Shaibah and his son Al-Walid stepped forward and gave out a challenge for a single combat. Three men of the Ansar come out against them: Awf and Mu’adh the sone of Al-Harith, as well as Abdullah Ibn Rawahah. The Quraishi men said, “Who are you?” They answered “some of the Ansar,” whereupon the Quraishi men shouted, “O Muhammad! Send forth against us our peers of our tribe!” Therefore, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) sent out Ali, Hamzah and Ubaidah Ibn Al-Harith to face them. It was not long before Hamzah and Ali had killed their opponents. As for Ubaidah, he had wounded his enemy but was wounded himself, and so his two companions killed the Quraishi men and cried, Ubaidah back to the safety of the Muslim ranks.”
In this context, Al-Bukhari narrated on the authority of Abu Dharr who said, “The following Qur’ainc verse that reads,
“These two opponents (believers and unbelievers) dispute with each other about their Loed. (Al-Hajj: 19) “
was revealed concerning six men from Quraish, namely, Ali, Hamzah, Ubaidah Ibn Al-Harith; Shaibah Ibn Rabi’ah, Utbah Ibn Rabi’ah, and Al-Walid Ibn Utbah.”
The first on of the Muslim army who died a martyr was Mahaj, the salve of Umar Ibn Al-Khattab; the second was Harithah Ibn Suraqah. Both Al-Bukhari and Muslim narrated on the authority of Anas that Harithah was martyred on the day of Badr, and he was a young boy then. His mother came to the Prophet and said, “O Messenger of Allah! You know hear Harithah is to me. If he is Paradise, I shall remain patient, and hope for reward from Allah, but if it is not so, then you shell see what I do?” He said,
“My Allah be merciful to you! Have you lost you senses? Do you think there is only one Paradise? There are many Paradise and your son is in the (most superior) Paradise of Al-Firdaus.“
Ibn Ishaq said that the two armies advanced and drew near to one another. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) ordered his Companions not to attack until he gave the word, and if the enemy should surround them, they were to keep them off with showers of arrows. Al-Bukhari narrated on the authority of Abu Usaid who said, “On the day of battle Badr, Allah’s Messenger (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, to us,
“When your enemy comes near to you (i.e., overcome you by sheer number), shoot at them but use your arrows sparingly.”
The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) remained in the hut with Abu Bakr praying earnestly to Allah to protect Muslims and grant them victory. In this context, Allah, Most High, says in the Glorious Qur’an,
“Remember ye implored the assistance of your Lord. And He answered you: ‘I will assist you with a thousand of the angels, ranks. Allah made it but a massage of hope, and an assurance to your hearts: (in any case) there is no help except from Allah: and Allah is Exalted in power, Wise. (Al-Anfal: 9-10)”
Al-Bukhari narrated on the authority of Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with them both) who said, “On the day of battle of Badr, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him)said,
“O Allah! I appeal to you (to fulfill) Your Covenant and Promise. O Allah! If your Will is that none should worship you (then give victory to the pagans)!“
Then Abu Bakr took hold of him by the hand and said, ‘ This is sufficient for you.’ The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) came out saying,
“Their multitude will be put to flight and they will show their backs. (Al-Qamar: 45)”
Ibn Ishaq said that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) persisted in praying to Allah to grant him victory, which He had promised to him and among his words, were these:
“Be of good cheer, O Abu Bakr. Allah’s help is coming to you. Here is Gabriel holding the rein of a horse and leading it. The dust is upon his front teeth.“
The the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) went froth to the people and incited them saying,
“By the One in Whose Hand is the soul of Muhammad, no man will be slain this day fighting against them with steadfast courage advancing not retreating but Allah will cause him to enter Paradise.“
Umair Ibn Al-Human was eating some dates, which he had in his hand. “Fine!’ fine!’ said he, “is their nothing between me and my entering Paradise save to be killed by these men?” He flung the dates from his hand, seized his sword and fought against them until he was slain.
At Badr, the angels participated in fighting Al-Bukhari narrated on the authority of Rafi Al-Zurqi who was on of the Badr warriors that Gabriel come to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and said,
“How do you look upon the warriors of Badr among yourselves?” The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “As the best of the Muslims.” Or said a similar statement. On that, Gabriel said,
“And so are the Angels who participated in the Badr.“
In this context, Ibn Ishaq reported that waqid Al-Laith said that I was pursuing a polytheist at Badr to smite him, when his head feel off before I could get at him with my sword and I knew that someone else had killed him. Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with them both) said that the angels did not fight in any battle but Badr. In the other battles they were there as reinforcements, but the did not fight.
Athough the Muslims were much fever in number, they gained a great victory, destroyed the army of Quraish and killed most of its leaders. Among the leading men of Quraish who killed were Abu Jahl and Umayyah Ibn Khalaf, who was killed by his former slave, Bilal.
Abu Talhah narrated that on the day of Badr, the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) ordered that the corpses of twenty-four leaders of Quraish should be thrown into one of the dirty dry wells of Badr. (It was habit of the Prophet, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, that whenever he conquered some people, he used to stay at the battlefield for three nights) So, on the third day of the battle of Badr, he ordered that his she-camel be saddled, the he set out, and his Companions followed him saying among themselves, ‘Definitely he (i.e., the Prophet) is proceeding for some great purpose.’ When he halted at the edge of the well, he addressed the corpses of the Quraishi infidels by their names and their fathers’ names, ‘O so-and-so, son of so-and -so and O so-and-so, son of so-and -so! Would it have pleased you if you had obeyed Allah and His Messenger? We have found true what your Lord promised us Have you too found true what your Lord promised you? Umar said, ‘O Allah’s Messenger! You are speaking to bodies that have no souls!’ The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, ‘By Him in Whose Hand Muhammad’s soul is, you do not hear, what I say batter than they do.’
Commenting on this narration, Qatadah said, “Allah brought them to life (again) to let them hear him, to reprimand them and slight them and take revenge over them and caused them to feel remorseful and regretful.” Moreover 70 men of Quraish had been taken prisoner. On his part, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) consulted his Companions regarding the captives.
Muslim narrated on the authority of Umar Ibn Al-Khattab who said that when it was the day on which the Battle of Badr was fought, the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) cast of glance at the infidels, and they were one thousand while his own Companions were three hundred and nineteen. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) Turned towards the Qiblah (House of God). Then he stretched his hands and began his supplication to his Lord,
‘O Allah, accomplish for me what you have promised to me. O Allah, bring about what you have promised to me. O Allah, if this small band of Muslims is destroyed, You will not be worshiped on this earth.‘
He continued his supplication to his Lord, stretching his hands, facing the Qiblah, until his mantle slipped down form his shoulders. So Abu Bakr come to him, picked up his mantle and put it on his shoulders. Then he embraced him from behind and said. ‘O Prophet of Allah, This prayer of yours to your Lord will suffice you, and He will fulfil for you what He has promised you.’ So Allah, the Glorious and Exalted, revealed (the Qur’anic verse),
“Remember ye implored the assistance of your Lord. And He answered you: ‘I will assist you with a thousand of the Angels, ranks on ranks.’ So Allah helped him with angles. (Al-Anfal: 9) “
Abu Zumail said that this badith was narrated to him by Ibn Abbas (may Allah be pleased with them) who said that while on the day a Muslim was chasing a disbeliever who was going ahead of him, he heard over him the swishing of the whip and the voice of the rider saying: Go ahead, Haizi’m! He glanced at the polytheist who had (now) fallen down on his back. When he looked at him (carefully he found that there was a scar on his nose and his face was torn as if it had been lashed with a whip, and had turned green with its poison. An Ansari come to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) and related this (event) to him. He said,
‘You have told the truth, This was the help from the third heaven.’
The Muslims on that the day of battle Badr, killded seventy persons and captured seventy. The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said to Abu Bakr and Umar (may Allah be pleased with them both), “What is your opinion about these captives?” Abu Bakr said, “They are our kith and kin. I think you should release them after getting from them ransom. This will be a source of strength to us against the infidels. It is quite possible that Allah may guide them to Islam.” Then the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “What is you opinion, Ibn Khatab?” Umar said, “Messenger of Allah, I do not hold the same opinion as Abu Bakr. I am if the opinion that you should hand them over to us so that we may cut off heads. Hand over Aqil to Ali that he may cut of his head, and hand over such and such relative to me that I may cut if his head. They are leaders of the disbelievers and veterans among them.” The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) approved the opinion of Abu Bake and did not approve what I said. The next day when I come to the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), I found that both he and Abu Bakr were sitting shedding tears. I said, ‘Messenger of Allah, why are you and your Companion shedding tears? Tell me the reason. For I will weep too, if not, I will at least pretend to weep in sympathy with you.’ The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, ‘I weep for what has happened to your companions for taking ransom (form the prisoners). Iwas shown the torture t which they were subjected. It was brought to me as close as this tree (he pointed to a tree close to him).’ Then Allah revealed the Qur’anic verse:
“It is not fitting for a prophet that he should have prisoners of war until he hath subdued the land ……. but now enjoy what ye took in war, lawful and good. (AL-Anfal: 67-69) “
THE DIVISION OF THE SPOILS OF WARS
According to the sholars of Siyrah, Muslims who to took part in Badr, Muslims were three parties, namely, a group defended the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), a group fought and pursued the enemy and a group collected the spoils. Each group claimed that it had the right to take the booty. When they quarreled about the booty, Allah took it out of their hands and gave it the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), and he divided it equally among them.
In this context, Allah, Most High, says.
“They ask thee concerning (things taken as) spoils of war. Say: ‘(Such) spoils are at the sidposal of Allah and the Messenger: the relations between yourselves: Obey Allah and His Messenger, if ye do believe. (Al-Anfal: 1)”