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Age Prophecy?

The anti Ahmadis raise two allegation against Hadhrat Ahmadas in regards to his age. Firstly, they claim that he said he was born in 1839 or 1840, and secondly they claim he did not fulfill his prophecy of living up to 80 years. I will answer both of the following allegations. Let us begin with the age of Hadhrat Ahmadas.

 

Firstly, Allah makes it clear in the Holy Qur’an that Prophets are mocked in similar ways:

 

مَا يُقَالُ لَكَ إِلَّا مَا قَدْ قِيلَ لِلرُّسُلِ مِنْ قَبْلِكَ ۚ إِنَّ رَبَّكَ لَذُو مَغْفِرَةٍ وَذُو عِقَابٍ أَلِيمٍ{44}

 

Nothing is said to thee but what was said to the Messengers before thee. Thy Lord is indeed the Master of forgiveness; and also the Master of painful chastisement. (Chapter 41 Verse 44)

 

We see that even in regards to the age of Hadhrat Muhammadsaw, there are many different ages given because even his birth date was not confirmed. In those days a person’s birth date was not written down. The following athaar narrated by Hadhrat Anas bin Malik states that the Prophet Muhammadsaw died at the age of sixty:

 

حَدَّثَنَا إِسْمَاعِيلُ، قَالَ حَدَّثَنِي مَالِكُ بْنُ أَنَسٍ، عَنْ رَبِيعَةَ بْنِ أَبِي عَبْدِ الرَّحْمَنِ، عَنْ أَنَسِ بْنِ مَالِكٍ ـ رضى الله عنه ـ أَنَّهُ سَمِعَهُ يَقُولُ كَانَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم لَيْسَ بِالطَّوِيلِ الْبَائِنِ، وَلاَ بِالْقَصِيرِ، وَلَيْسَ بِالأَبْيَضِ الأَمْهَقِ، وَلَيْسَ بِالآدَمِ، وَلَيْسَ بِالْجَعْدِ الْقَطَطِ، وَلاَ بِالسَّبْطِ، بَعَثَهُ اللَّهُ عَلَى رَأْسِ أَرْبَعِينَ سَنَةً، فَأَقَامَ بِمَكَّةَ عَشْرَ سِنِينَ، وَبِالْمَدِينَةِ عَشْرَ سِنِينَ، وَتَوَفَّاهُ اللَّهُ عَلَى رَأْسِ سِتِّينَ سَنَةً، وَلَيْسَ فِي رَأْسِهِ وَلِحْيَتِهِ عِشْرُونَ شَعَرَةً بَيْضَاءَ‏.‏

 

Narrated Anas bin Malik:The Prophet (ﷺ) was neither conspicuously tall, nor short; neither, very white, nor tawny. His hair was neither much curled, nor very straight. Allah sent him (as an Apostle) at the age of forty (and after that) he stayed for ten years in Mecca, and for ten more years in Medina. Allah took him unto Him at the age of sixty, and he scarcely had ten white hairs on his head and in his beard. (Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith 5900)

 

 

It is also narrated that the Prophet Muhammadsaw passed away at the age of sixty three:

 

حَدَّثَنَا مَطَرُ بْنُ الْفَضْلِ، حَدَّثَنَا رَوْحٌ، حَدَّثَنَا هِشَامٌ، حَدَّثَنَا عِكْرِمَةُ، عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ ـ رضى الله عنهما ـ قَالَ بُعِثَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم لأَرْبَعِينَ سَنَةً، فَمَكُثَ بِمَكَّةَ ثَلاَثَ عَشْرَةَ سَنَةً يُوحَى إِلَيْهِ، ثُمَّ أُمِرَ بِالْهِجْرَةِ فَهَاجَرَ عَشْرَ سِنِينَ، وَمَاتَ وَهُوَ ابْنُ ثَلاَثٍ وَسِتِّينَ‏.‏

 

Narrated Ibn `Abbas:

 

Allah’s Messenger (ﷺ) started receiving the Divine Inspiration at the age of forty. Then he stayed in Mecca for thirteen years, receiving the Divine Revelation. Then he was ordered to migrate and he lived as an Emigrant for ten years and then died at the age of sixty-three (years). (Sahih al Bukhari, Hadith #3902)

 

Another hadith mentions that Hadhrat Muhammadsaw passed away at the age of sixty five years:

 

وَحَدَّثَنِي ابْنُ مِنْهَالٍ الضَّرِيرُ، حَدَّثَنَا يَزِيدُ بْنُ زُرَيْعٍ، حَدَّثَنَا يُونُسُ بْنُ عُبَيْدٍ، عَنْ عَمَّارٍ، مَوْلَى بَنِي هَاشِمٍ قَالَ سَأَلْتُ ابْنَ عَبَّاسٍ كَمْ أَتَى لِرَسُولِ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم يَوْمَ مَاتَ فَقَالَ مَا كُنْتُ أَحْسِبُ مِثْلَكَ مِنْ قَوْمِهِ يَخْفَى عَلَيْهِ ذَاكَ – قَالَ – قُلْتُ إِنِّي قَدْ سَأَلْتُ النَّاسَ فَاخْتَلَفُوا عَلَىَّ فَأَحْبَبْتُ أَنْ أَعْلَمَ قَوْلَكَ فِيهِ ‏.‏ قَالَ أَتَحْسُبُ قَالَ قُلْتُ نَعَمْ ‏.‏ قَالَ أَمْسِكْ أَرْبَعِينَ بُعِثَ لَهَا خَمْسَ عَشْرَةَ بِمَكَّةَ يَأْمَنُ وَيَخَافُ وَعَشْرَ مِنْ مُهَاجَرِهِ إِلَى الْمَدِينَةِ ‏.‏

 

‘Ammar, the freed slave of Banu Hashim, reported:

I asked Ibn ‘Abbas how old was he when death overtook the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ). He said: I little know that such a thing is not known to a man like you who belong to his people. He said: I asked people about it but they differed with me, and I liked to know your opinion about it. He said: Do you know counting? He said: Yes. He then said: Bear this in mind very well that he was commissioned (as a Prophet) at the age of forty, and he stayed in Mecca for fifteen years; sometime in peace and sometime in dread, and (lived) for ten years after his migration to Medina. (Sahih Muslim Hadith #2353)

 

In regards to Hadhrat Ahmadas‘s date of birth, when all references are put together, the only date that would make sense is February 13, 1835. The non Ahmadi Muslims say that Hadhrat Ahmadas said he was born in around 1839 or 1840 but forget that this was merely an estimate which itself is shown by the word “or”. Secondly, we must look at all writings together to understand why there was ambiguity in regards to the age of Hadhrat Ahmadas.

 

It is important to make it clear that Hadhrat Ahmadas himself said that only Allah Knows his real age, which tells us right away that anywhere in his books where he has given his age, it is merely an estimation:

 

Meaning, Only Allah Knows my real age, but according to my knowledge, my age is near 70 years in this year of 1323 and Allah Knows Best (Ruhani Khazain Volume 21, Barahin-e- Ahmadiyya Volume 5, Page 325)

 

From this reference, the entire allegation is already answered. Hadhrat Ahmadas says only Allah knows his real age and according to his own knowledge his age is 70 years in the year of 1323 Hijri (1905) . According to this reference, Hadhrat Ahmadas was born in 1835, which is
exactly what we believe.

 

Secondly, In Tohfa Golarviya, Hadhrat Ahmadas states he was born on a  Friday 14th, of the Lunar Calendar:

 

 

When we read a beautiful seerat of Hadhrat Ahmadas called Zikre Habib, by Mufti Muhammad Sadiq sbra we find that it states:

 

 

It states that Hadhrat Ahmadas said that he was born on Friday the 14th in the month of Phaalgun (using Lunar Calendar). A Friday on the 14th during the day of a Lunar month, and the Indian month of Phaalgun occurs on 17 February 1832 and 13th February 1835. The latter is the date we believe in, which further proves that according to Hadhrat Ahmadas, he was born in 1835 (when all works are looked at together)

 

In Tiryaqul Qulub and the poetry of Hadhrat Ahmadas, he mentions that he got his first revelation at the age of 40 years. In Haqiqatul Wahi, heas makes it clear that his first revelation was in the year 1290, meaning he was born in 1835.

 

 

Hadhrat Ahmadas also stated that he was around 70 in the year of 1903.

 

 

According to this reference, Hadhrat Ahmadas lived to around 75 years and was born in 1833, which is also close to 1835 supporting our view.

 

If the opponents want to use the writing of Kitabul Bariyyah to suggest Hadhrat Ahmadas was born in 1839 or 1840 (which was an estimate), they must also look at these writings which further show Hadhrat Ahmadas was always giving a estimation.

 

In Majmua Ishtiharat Volume 2, Page 57-63 which was published in the year 1894, Hadhrat Ahmadas stated Mr.Atham is now sixty four and I am about sixty. According to this reference, Hadhrat Ahmadas was born in around 1834, and since he used the word “about ” sixty, we can conclude that even according to this writing, he was born in 1835.

 

Some opponents quote Lecture Ludhaiana as well, but even in this book it was a estimation that Hadhrat Ahmadas gave, and it does not support the claim of anti Ahmadis.

 

All of these references make it clear that Hadhrat Ahmadas always gave an estimation of his age. Even people living today, in the third world are unaware of their dates of birth. By the Grace of Allah, according to Hadhrat Mufti Muhammad Sadiq Sahibra ‘s works, we have come to the conclusion (supported by the words of Hadhrat Ahmadas) that he was born in the year of 1835.

 

Now we come to the allegation on the death of Hadhrat Ahmadas. The anti Ahmadis raise the false allegation that Hadhrat Ahmadas did not fulfill the prophecy of his age being 80 years.  Firstly, they misinterpret his revelation.

 

The revelation is as follows:

 

“As Allah the Almighty knew that my opponents would wish for my early demise that they might be able to proclaim that I had died early because I was false in my claims, He revealed to be aforetime:

 

ثَمَانِیْنَ حَوْلاً اَوْ قَرِیْباً مِّنْ ذَالِکَ۔ اَوْتَزِیْدُ عَلَیْہِ سِنِیْناً۔ وَتَرٰی نَسْلاً بَعِیْداً

That is [Arabic] Your age will be eighty years – a few years less or some years more; and you will live long enough to witness your distant progeny.” (Arbain, no.3 First edition, pg 29-30, Ruhani Khazain, Vol 17, Pg 418-419)

 

Some claim that Allah would not reveal a revelation which something like “thereabouts” but they forget that Allah States in the Qur’an:

وَإِمَّا نُرِيَنَّكَ بَعْضَ الَّذِي نَعِدُهُمْ أَوْ نَتَوَفَّيَنَّكَ فَإِلَيْنَا مَرْجِعُهُمْ ثُمَّ اللَّهُ شَهِيدٌ عَلَىٰ مَا يَفْعَلُونَ {47}

And if We show thee in thy lifetime the fulfillment of some of the things with which We have threatened them, thou wilt know it; or if We cause thee to die before that, then to Us is their return, and thou wilt see the fulfillment in the next world; and Allah is Witness to all that they do.(Chapter 10 verse 47)

 

Allah made is clear that heas would live 80 years, a few years less or some more. He himself explains this revelation by saying:

 

“Eighty years—four or five more, or four or five less. I shall bless you greatly, so much so that kings will seek blessings from your garments. My name has demonstrated its flash for your sake. I shall show fifty or sixty more Signs. Those who are accepted of God exhibit Signs and evidence of such acceptance. They are revered by kings and mighty ones and are called princes of peace. The drawn sword of angels is in front of you; but you have not recognized or seen or known the time. It is not good to oppose the Brahman Avatar.” [Haqiqatul-Wahi, pp. 70–108, Ruhani Khaza’in, vol. 22, pp. 73–111] (meaning he would live to around 74-86 Hijri years)

 

It is clear that Hadhrat Ahmadas was born on the 14th Shawal, 1250 (13th February 1835) and passed away on the 24th of Rabi-us-Sani 1326  (26th May 1908). Therefore, the age of Hadhrat Ahmadas was 75 years, 6 months and 10 days Hijri which is a beautiful fulfilment of the prophecy of his death.

 

Furthermore, the opponents of Ahmadas themselves were a witness to the prophecy of the age of the Messiah.

Maulvi Sanaullah States:

“Mirza Sahib has said that his demise would be near 80 years of age and perhaps he has fulfilled all those conditions” (Ahl-e-hadith 3rd May 1907 page 3 Column 2)

 

It is also important to notice that in 1907, Sanaullah was wondering as to why Ahmadas had not died since he believed his age had reached 80.

 

Again Sanaullah writes:

 

“A Person who is older than 70 years of age (as is Mirza Sahib himself)…” (Tafseer-e-Sanai Matbbooa 1899 Hashia 4 Under Ayah Inni Mutawaffaka)

 

Maulvi Hussain Batalvi wrote: “He’s already 63 years of old…” (Risala Isha’at-us-Sunnah, Volume 15, Page 19)

 

This was written in the year of 1893 which shows that according to one of Ahmadas’s greatest opponent this prophecy was even fulfilled.

 

It is also important to note that Ahmadas was receiving revelation in regards to his death. He was shown a dream which had two or three mouthfuls of water left and he himself said this means that he has around two or three years left which was narrated in 1905. Why would one who made a false prophecy of his age, receive true prophecies about his death? That would be contradictory and it is clear that in reality all of the prophecies were fulfilled but many are misinterpreted.

 

Here are some more revelations in regards to his passing away:

 

He will send down from heaven that which will please thee. A mercy from Our self and a matter that has been determined. That which you are being promised is near. I have issued my decree” (Al Hakam, vol 9, no. 44, 24thOctober 1905 pg 4)

“A sad piece of news has been received from Lahore” (Badr, Volume VI, no.27, July 4, 1907 page 7)

 

Then on the 14th of March during the year of 1907 Allah revealed:

 

“..have brought his dead body wrapped in a coffin”(Al Hakm)

 

A week before he passed away Allah told him “The time of departure is imminent and death is near” and then “An event on the 27th” also “Allah is the best and everlasting” (December 1907)

 

Then on may 20th 1908 Allah revealed “It is time to march; again, it is time to march and death is near” (Al Badr Vol 7 No. 22, June 2, 1908 page 3)

 

Just a day before he passed away Allah told him:“Do not trust the mortal age”

 

Even when we look at the ahadith in regards to the death of Isaas some say 120 years of age and some say 125 years of age from Holy Prophet Muhammadsaw. There is no more room left to bring such an allegation.