They were all a test

The torture, persecution, insults, difficulties, and obstacles that the first Muslims were afflicted with were also tests sent by Allah. For example, it did not just end by saying, “I have testified to faith.” The amount of loyalty, sincerity, and patience in faith had to be measured as well.

There had to be an excessive level of difficulty, persecution, and torture so that those who truly carried the desire of belief in their hearts would testify without paying attention to such inconveniences, whereas those who did not sincerely carry this desire would be separated from the true believers.

As a matter of fact, the following Quranic verse indicates this issue:

"We did test those before them, and Allah will certainly know those who are true from those who are false." (1)

Thus, the most important measure of one’s sincerity in faith is not bowing before the difficulties, torture, cruelty, and persecution that he/she may face.

Such unbearable persecution, torture, cruelty, and insults could not break the courage of those genuine Muslims who submitted to Allah and His Messenger (PBUH) in the truest sense. The polytheists could not hinder them from standing their ground in the circle of guidance or prevent others from running to that circle. The torture, persecution, and insults were like the wood that caused the fire of Islam to burn more strongly and to shine more brightly. As the polytheists continued with their acts of torture and persecution, the Islamic cause was developing at a greater speed, being spread, and continuing to reign with its light over hearts.

Undoubtedly, tyranny and violence have never been able to continuously overcome and suppress the truth in any era, nor have they been able to muffle or enslave it. On the contrary, the truth has been able to defeat tyranny, cruelty, and darkness and has annihilated them on many occasions.

The incomparable courage, immense patience, and magnificent amount of fortitude the Muslims showed against the persecution and cruelty during the Era of Bliss are full of lessons for today’s Muslims to learn from and they possess such a high level of sublimity that can bring those who truly possess prudence and a sense of justice to tears.

Even Leone Kaitano, an Italian writer, historian, and a staunch enemy of Islam, could not contain himself from making this confession:

“What is bewildering is that there was not even a single apostate among them!”

Actually, what is bewildering is that a writer who makes this type of confession can continue being hostile towards Islam instead of submitting his heart and pen in the way of Islam and continues to close his eyes amid broad daylight so as not to see the sun.

[1] Saba, 3.