M A R Y A M

Story of Zakariyya

Posted on: Friday, January 6, 2012

Allah reveals the story of Zakariyya in Surah Maryam, chapter 19 in the Holy Quran in verses 1-15. Allah reminds mankind of his mercy on his servant Zakariyya. It has been recorded in the Sahih Al-Bukhari that the prophet S.A.S said that Zakariyya was a carpenter who used to eat from what he earned with his own hand through his carpentry. Zakariyya was a really old man, weak and feeble in strength (19:4); the point being not to describe his physical appearance but to inform the extent of his old age and weakness. He had no heir to carry forward his mission and therefore he used to make his supplications secretly (which is more beloved to Allah), he feared his Mawali (relatives) since he was afraid that the generation that would succeed him would be a wicked generation. Thus, he used to ask Allah for a prophet after him, who would guide them with his prophethood and that which was revealed to him.

Allah responded to his supplications by giving him glad tidings of a son to be named Yahya as mentioned: ‘At that time Zakariyya invoked his Lord saying: ‘O my Lord! Grant me from You, a good offspring. You are indeed the All-Hearer of invocation.’ Then the angles called him, while he was standing in prayer in the Mihrab (a private place for worship) saying :’Allah gives you glad tidings of Yahya, confirming (believing in) the word of Allah, noble, keeping away from sexual relations with women, a prophet, from among the righteous (3:38-39). Zakariyya was truly amazed when his supplications was answered and he was given the good news of a son. This is particularly amazing since his wife was an old woman who was barren and had not given birth to any children in her entire life. Even Zakariyya himself had become feeble and thin, and had no potent semen or vigor for sexual intercourse. The following Ayat also informs of the birth of the son from the same barren wife and not any other woman, showing how simple and easy it is for Allah to do so and reminded him of how he and every human is created from nothing in a womb.

Zakriyya then asks Allah to give him a sign (19: 10) and a proof of the existence of that which You have promised me, so that my soul will be at rest and my heart will be at ease with Your promise. Allah replies by saying, ‘Your sign in that you shall not speak unto mankind for three nights, though having no bodily defect‘ (19:10). Meaning that his tongue was prevented from speaking for three nights while he was totally healthy and fit.

Allah in following verses mentions the birth of Yahya as per His promise to Zakariyya. Yahya was blessed with characteristics like knowledge, fortitude, diligence and zeal for good and pirsuit of good, even though he was very young. Then Allah mentions the reward oh Yahya for this, ‘And Salam be on him the day he was born and the day he dies and the day her will be raised up to life‘(16:15). This means that Yahya was granted security and safety in these three circumstances where a man is the loneliest. The first situation is on that day he was born, the second when he dies and he will not see nayone anymore and the third when he will be resurrected and he sees himself in a great gathering. Allah exclusively honors Yahya by granting him peace in these situations.

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2 Responses to "Story of Zakariyya"

Maryam, I’m very happy to read these posts, it improves my knowledge of Islam, please keep these kind of posts coming in, each time I check my mail to see if I have a post from you 🙂

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