This article of faith addresses the belief that Allah has conveyed His message through selected human beings. These individuals, called prophets and messengers, were selected by 24 He meant specifically the four Caliphs who came after him. 25 That is, do not let go of it. 26 Hadith (hadeeth): the collected statements and actions of Prophet Muhammad (blessings and peace be upon him) that with the Qur’an form the basis of Islamic law Allah to be examples of how the scriptures were to be understood and implemented. Prophets have demonstrated practically, for their followers, how one should live by the law.
The way of the prophets is the only way to Allah, because it has been prescribed by Allah Himself. Hence, without prophets, people would not know Allah, His attributes or how to worship Him.
The role of the prophets can be summarized as follows:
1. Receive the message from Allah.
2. Deliver it to the people.
3. Advise people to fear Allah and abide by His commandments.
4. Advise people who have deviated, disobeyed Allah, or worshipped anything or anyone other than Him, to repent and obey and worship Him only.
5. Inform people about the fundamental aspects of faith.
6. Teach detailed religious and moral tenets to their followers.
7. Be a model for their people, and lead them to eternal paradise.
Allah has sent a prophet or prophets to every nation; their duty was to convey the message that He alone should be worshipped and anything worshipped along with Him or besides Him is false and unacceptable. The Qur’an has mentioned the names of twenty-five prophets (see diagram) while indicating that many others existed yet were not mentioned by name. The first of these prophets was Adam (peace be upon him) and the last was Muhammad (blessings and peace be upon him). May Allah’s mercy and peace be upon the prophets.
Every prophet was sent to a specific people for a specific era. Prophet Muhammad (blessings and peace be upon him) was an exception, who was sent as the last and final messenger until the hour of judgement. The proofs that Muhammad (blessings and peace be upon him) was a messenger of Allah are innumerable; all have been mentioned in his detailed biography.
The greatest proof is the miracle of the Qur’an, which could not have been written by any human; also, it could not have been conveyed except through a Messenger of Allah (blessings and peace be upon him).
Indeed, the books of the Bible mention the advent of Prophet Muhammad (blessings and peace be upon him), in spite of the changes which have been introduced in their content. The Qur’an and the sayings and practice of Prophet Muhammad (blessings and peace be upon him) relate, with reverence, the lives of many of these prophets. Prophet Muhammad (blessings and peace be upon him), the last prophet, has remained as the absolute example for his followers.
His teachings were further elucidated in practice by his Rightly- Guided successors. The Prophet (blessings and peace be upon him) encouraged his followers continuously to follow the prophets’ way, and warned against conflict over Islamic principles and values. This was to ensure that his followers would not deviate from the right path, as had happened to the followers of previous prophets.
Prophet Muhammad’s followers owe him two things: obedience and love.