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In that difficult moment, Abu Bakr t lifted his head and saw the feet of the pursuers above their heads.
Pitying his companion and his sacred Message, he said to the Prophet (pbuh), “If any of them looked down his feet, he would certainly see us.”
The Prophet (pbuh) answered, “O Abu Bakr, what do you think of two when Allah is their third?”1
Indeed, Allah Almighty was with His Prophet (pbuh) all along the way. All material power was in the hands of his enemies, who beset him on all sides; but Almighty Allah, the Best of Supporters, was by his side.
To eternalize this great incident of Divine Support, glorious Ayat were revealed giving a vivid account of the two Companions in the cave, and the forces through which Allah made His Messenger triumph. Allah Almighty says:
(If you do not help him (Muhammad), Allah has already helped him when those who disbelieved had driven him out (of Makkah), the second of the two. When they were in the cave, and he said to his companion, “Do not grieve; indeed Allah is with us.” Then Allah sent down His Sakinah (calmness, tranquility, peace) 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 Allah that is the uppermost. And Allah is Exalted in Might, All-Wise.)
(At-Tawbah 9: 40)
Allah alone made Islam and Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) triumph. At the age of forty when Muhammad (pbuh) declared his mission from heaven, there was no political party, or royalty, and certainly no family or tribe to back him up. His people – the Arabs, immersed in idolatry and fetishism – were not by any means a docile people; they were no easy meat. They were a very volatile people, given to internecine and fratricidal wars, subject to all kinds of fierce sincerities.
For one man to singlehandedly wean such a people from idolatry and fetishism required nothing short of a miracle. A miracle did happen. Allah alone could have made Islam and Muhammad (pbuh) triumph with such flimsy, gossamer support.2
It was Divine Victory. It was Allah Almighty fulfilling His Promise:
(Verily, We will indeed make victorious Our Messengers.)
(Ghafir 40: 51)
- Narrated by Anas bin Malik: Sahih Al-Bukhary, Book of Al-Manaqib, Hadith no. 3380; similar versions of the Hadith are also reported by Al-Bukhary (3629, 4295), Muslim (4389), At-Tirmidhy (3021), and Ahmad (11).
- Adapted from Ahmad Deedat, Muhammad the Greatest.