Chapter 6: Muhammad's Death
The final days of Muhammad arrived. He had gained total control of the Arabian peninsula and made the Kaaba in Mecca the only holy shrine to be acknowledged, although there were many other Kaabas in Arabia.
In the tenth year after the Hijra, Muhammad made his farewell pilgrimage to Mecca. Soon after his return to Al-Madina, he fell ill. Two verses in the Quran refer to his death:
Muhammad is no more than a Messenger: many were the messengers that passed away before him. If he died or were slain, will ye then turn back on your heels? (Surat Al-Imran 3:144).
Say: I have no power over any good or harm ot myself except as Allah willeth. If I had knowledge of the unseen, I should have multiplied all good, and no evil should have touched me: I am but a warner.. (Surat Al-Araf 7:188).
Writing about Muhammad's death, Al-Baidawi, the great expositor of the Quran, said:
"If he should die or be slain, will you then turn back on your heels?" (refers to the incident in which) Abdallah Ibn Qami'a al-Harithi threw a rock at Allah's Messenger that broke four of his front teeth and gashed his face. Mus'ab Ibn Umair, who was the standard-bearer defended (Muhammad). So Ibn Qami'a killed (Mus'ab), assuming that he killed the Prophet. Then, as it is reported, he said "I killed Muhammad." Someone cried out, "Behold, Muhammad has been killed," and the people turned on their heels. Then the Messenger cried out, "Come to me, servants of Allah," Thirty of his followers joined him and protected him until they scattered the unbelievers. Some hypocrites said, "Had he been a prophet, he would not have been killed." Anas Ibn Nadr, the uncle of Anas Ibn Malak, said, "O, people, if Muhammad is slain, Muhammad's Lord is alive, and dies not; what shall you do if you live after him? So fight for what he fought for," and added "O Allah, I acquit myself of what they say and exonerate myself from it." He then clasped his sword firmly and fought till he was killed, and the verse was revealed.
When Khaybar was conquered, and the people felt secure, Zainab Bint al-Harith, Salam Ibn Mishkam's wife, went about asking which part of the lamb was Muhammad's favorite to eat. People told her, "It is the front leg, for it is the best part and the farthest from harm." So she took a lamb, slaughtered it, and cut it up. Then she took a deadly poison that kills instantly and poisoned the lamb, putting more poison in the leg and shoulder. When the sun set, Muhammad led the people in the evening prayer. When he finished he wanted to go, but she was sitting at his feet. He asked her, and she said, "O Abu al-Qasim, here is a gift I have for you." Muhammad ordered some of his friends to take it from her, and it was put before him in the presence of his friends, among whom was Bishr Ibn al-Bara' Ibn Ma'rur. Muhammad said, "Come near and be seated." Muhammad took the leg and ate, too. When Muhammad had swallowed his bite, Bishr swallowed his, and the rest of the people ate of it. Muhammad said, "Raise your hands; this leg and this shoulder tell me they are poisoned." Bishr said, "By the One who honored you, I found the same in my morsel, but nothing kept me from spitting it out except that I would spoil the pleasure of your food. When you ate that which was in your mouth, I did not desire my own soul more than yours, and wished that you had not swallowed it." (One opinion has it that) Bishr died then and there. A part of the lamb was thrown to a dog, and the dog died. Another opinion says that (Bishr's) color turned black and his pain lasted two years, after which he died. It was also said that Muhammad took a bite of the lamb, chewed it, and spit it out, whereas Bihr swallowed his morsel. Then Muhammad sent for this Jewess and asked her, "Have you poisoned this lamb?" She said, "You have acquired certain powers with which you judge those who are not loyal to you. You killed my father, my uncle and my brother. . . So I said, "If he is a king, then I would be relieving us of him, and if he is a prophet, he will be able to perceive.'" It was said that he pardoned her, while others say he commanded her to be put to death and crucified. When Muhammad fell ill just before his death, he said to Aisha, "Aisha, I still feel the effect of the poisoned food I ate; this is the time of my demise by that poison." When Bishr's sister entered his room during the time of his last sickness, he said to her, "This is the time of my demise by the meal I ate with your brother in Khaybar." (The above quotation is from the book Is The Quran Infallible by Abdallah Abd al-Fadi, pages 378- 381).
Finally on June 632 A.D., death came to Muhammad in the room of his wife Aisha as he rested on her lap. He was sixty-three years old. Aisha was only sixteen years old.
Muhammad's Death Compared to That of Moses [TOP]
It is said that a grave was dug in that very place, and in it the prophet of Islam was buried. Later a mosque was built and Muhammad's grave became a place of pilgrimage in Al-Madina.
Now, we realize a great difference between Muhammad's death and burial and Moses' death and burial. Moses died when he was one hundred and twenty years old. The Bible says:
Moses was a hundred and twenty years old when he died, yet his eyes were not weak nor his strength gone (Deuteronomy 34:7 NIV).
Muhammad died when he was sixty-three years old with four of his front teeth broken.
Moses died according to the word of the Lord. His funeral was and angelic funeral (Jude 9). The Lord himself buried him in Moab and no one knows where his grave is.
He buried him in Moab, in the valley opposite Beth Peor, but to this day no one knows where his grave is (Deuteronomy 34:5, 6 NIV).
Muhammad, poisoned by a woman whose father, uncle and brother had been killed by him, died on the lap of a woman. His grave is for pilgrims to visit in Al-Madina.
Concerning the Tomb of Jesus Christ, we read the words of the angel to Mary Magdalene and the other Mary who came with her to see the tomb:
He is not here; for He is risen as He said. Come see the place where the Lord lay (Matthew 28:6).
Here is the great difference between Jesus Christ, who died to save those who believe in Him and rose again, victorious over death, and Muhammad who was poisoned and defeated by death.
The Quran records the death of Muhammad and his followers:
Lo! thou wilt die, and lo! they will die (Surat Al-Zumar 39:30 MPT).
Jesus Christ says to His followers:
Because I live, you will live also (John 14:19 NKJ).
Christians believe in a living Savior.