May 25, 2024
Life of Prophet Essa

Prophet Isa (Jesus), peace be upon him, is one of the most revered and beloved figures in the Islamic faith. Muslims believe in his miraculous birth, his ministry as a prophet, and his ascension to heaven. The story of Isa is woven into the fabric of Islamic history and theology, and his teachings and actions continue to inspire Muslims to this day.

Early Life and Family:

Isa was born to the Virgin Maryam (Mary) in the town of Bethlehem in Palestine. His birth was miraculous, as Mary conceived him without a human father through the intervention of God’s spirit. This miracle is mentioned in the Quran, where God says, “And We made her [Mary] and her son [Jesus] a sign for the worlds” (Quran 21:91).

Isa’s birth was accompanied by a number of other miracles. When Mary went into labor, she retreated to a secluded place in the wilderness, where she gave birth to Isa alone. But when she returned to her people carrying her newborn son, they were shocked and confused. They accused her of committing an act of immorality, but Isa spoke up from his cradle and defended his mother, saying, “Indeed, I am the servant of Allah. He has given me the Scripture and made me a prophet. And He has made me blessed wherever I am and has enjoined upon me prayer and zakah [charity] as long as I remain alive” (Quran 19:30-31).

Isa’s childhood and early adulthood are not well-documented in Islamic sources. It is believed that he lived with his mother and worked as a carpenter, but little else is known about his life during this period.

Ministry and Miracles:

Isa’s prophetic mission began when he was around 30 years old. He was chosen by God to call the Children of Israel back to the worship of the One God and to preach a message of righteousness and compassion. His ministry was characterized by a number of miraculous events, which served as proof of his prophethood.

One of Isa’s most famous miracles was his ability to heal the sick and raise the dead. He would touch the eyes of the blind and they would regain their sight, and he would lay his hands on the sick and they would be cured. He also raised several people from the dead, including Lazarus, who had been buried for four days.

Another famous miracle associated with Isa is his ability to speak from infancy. According to Islamic tradition, when Mary brought her newborn son to her people, they asked her how she could have a child without a husband. But Isa spoke up and said, “Indeed, I am the servant of Allah. He has given me the Scripture and made me a prophet” (Quran 19:30).

Isa also performed a number of other miracles, such as feeding the hungry with a few loaves of bread and fish, calming a storm at sea, and creating a bird from clay and breathing life into it.

Teachings:

Isa’s message was one of monotheism and moral uprightness. He called on the Children of Israel to worship the One God and to follow the commandments given to them by God through Moses. He also emphasized the importance of compassion, forgiveness, and humility.

One of Isa’s most famous teachings is the Golden Rule, which states, “So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them” (Matthew 7:12). This principle of treating others with kindness and respect is also found in Islamic teachings, where it is known as the principle of reciprocity.

Isa also emphasized the importance of sincere worship and warned against hypocrisy. He said, “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people’s bones and all uncleanness. So you also outwardly appear righteous to others, but within you are full of hypocrisy and lawlessness” (Matthew 23:27-28).

Isa also taught about the coming of a final prophet who would complete the message of God and guide people to the truth. This prophet, known in Islamic tradition as Muhammad, peace be upon him, was foretold by Isa as a “spirit of truth” who would come after him.

Isa’s teachings were often met with resistance and opposition from the religious authorities of his time, who saw him as a threat to their power and influence. They eventually succeeded in having him arrested and brought before the Roman governor, who sentenced him to death by crucifixion.

Crucifixion and Ascension:

According to Islamic tradition, Isa was not actually crucified, but was instead raised up to heaven by God. The Quran states, “And [for] their saying, ‘Indeed, we have killed the Messiah, Jesus, the son of Mary, the messenger of Allah.’ And they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but [another] was made to resemble him to them. And indeed, those who differ over it are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge of it except the following of assumption. And they did not kill him, for certain” (Quran 4:157).

Muslims believe that Isa’s ascension to heaven was a physical and spiritual event, in which he was raised up to the heavens by God’s power. This event is known in Islamic tradition as the Isra’ and Mi’raj, and is celebrated annually by Muslims.

Legacy and Significance:

Isa’s legacy in Islamic history and theology is significant. Muslims revere him as a prophet and messenger of God, and believe in his miraculous birth, ministry, and ascension. His teachings on monotheism, compassion, and moral uprightness continue to inspire Muslims to this day.

In Islamic tradition, Isa is also seen as a precursor to the final prophet, Muhammad, peace be upon him. He foretold the coming of a “spirit of truth” who would complete the message of God, and Muslims believe that this prophecy was fulfilled by Muhammad.

Overall, Prophet Isa (Jesus) is a revered and beloved figure in the Islamic faith. His life and teachings continue to inspire Muslims to live a life of faith, compassion, and righteousness.

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