One of the famous and well known prophecies of Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas is the one regards to the false Prophet whose named was John Alexander Dowie. Many newspapers recorded the challenge of Ahmadas to Dowie and The Boston Herald gave a detailed issue on this on June 23, 1907. This newspaper stated:
“Great is Mirza Ghulam Ahmad, The Messiah Foretold Pathetic End of Dowie”
The story in the New York Commercial Advertiser stated:
“Far far away-India, comes a printed circular from Mirza Ghulam Ahmad who writes from Qadian in the Punjab. He has issued a challenge to Elijah III (Dowie) to make his prediction, but so far Zion City’s own and special Messiah has failed to reply. In support of his claim, the Indian Messiah declares that when the Lord saw how badly things were being managed on earth, He raised him in the land of Punjab for His works are wonderful.”
They also quoted a saying of the Promised Messiah who said:
“I am the true Messiah who was to come in the last ages. This has Almighty spoken to me. I do not claim to be the Promised Messiah by my own assertion, but Almighty God, who made the earth and heaven, has borne witness to the truth of my claim. The evidence of God has passed His grace on me in far greater abundance than upon the Messiah who has gone before me. In the looking glass of my person, the face of God is revealed to a far greater extent than in that of Jesus’ person. If these simply are my own words and there is no authority for them, then I am a liar; but Almighty God bears witness to my truth. No one can give lie to me. Thousands of times, I should say, times without number, has He borne witness to the truth of my claim. A sign of evidence of God in my favor will appear in the death of Mr. Piggot — the arrogant pretender to divinity, who shall be brought to destruction within my life time. Another sign will appear on Dr. Dowie’s acceptance of my challenge. If the pretender of Elijahship shows his willingness by any direct or indirect means to enter the lists against me, he shall leave the world before my eyes with great sorrow and torment. These two signs are for Europe and America.”
Furthermore in the editorial captioned The War of the Prophets, it was written:
“Dowie called Muhammad (Holy Prophet) as king of impostors. He not only prophesied that Islam will meet its destruction at the hands of Zion, but he used to pray daily that the crescent is wiped out from the surface of the earth. When the news of the prophecy reached the Indian Messiah, then he challenged the Elijah and invited him to join him in a prayer-duel that whosoever is the liar should die in the lifetime of the true Messiah.
Qadiani Messiah prophesied that if Dowie accepted the challenge, he would die in his (Ahmad’s) life time with great disgrace and adversity. And even if he did not accept his challenge, even then his end is drawing close and death will overtake him. His Zion City will meet a great fall. This indeed was a great prophecy that Zion will fall on bad days and Dowie will die in his lifetime. This was dangerous assertion on the part of the Promised Messiah that he should challenge the Elijah the second in the contest of a long age, especially when the challenger himself is about fifteen years older than Dowie and had many diseases”
This prophecy was indeed one of the greatest prophecies and a great sign for the Promised Messiah as well. John Alexander Dowie gained a lot of attention when he claimed to be Elijah on June 2, 101 in the city of Zion which is North of Chicago. Dowie himself was a great influence of many Christians who fell for his false claim and started to give him a lot of respect as well. It was written by Mr.Napes in the Independent New York which was published on August 1, 1901:
“When I left Church, my heart was full of respect for this prophet and his followers, for these people with dedication and sincerity are trying to follow the teachings of the Holy Book.”
Thousands were joining his movement and he was receiving a lot of attention as well. The Munsey’s magazine of September 6, 1902 stated:
“Alexander Dowie ranks with the outstanding personalities who founded a new city capable of housing a million people. A city, which its founder proposes to convert into a spiritual headquarters of the whole world.”
Dowie made many claims such as him being free from any type of disease and his ability to heal the dead and cure all of the diseases as he believed Jesus did. Dowie and his message was spreading fast, and this gave him certain ideas of establishing much more cities around the world like the City of Zion. Ahmadas decided to prove to the world the reality of who the Prophet of Allah was. In the Review of Religions of September 1902, he stated:
“Since Dr. Dowie is the messenger of the powerful deity who was crucified by the Jews, I would entreat him to refrain from destroying the whole body of Muhammadans living on the face of the earth. If they do not take the son of Mary for their God, the fault is not theirs. Where is the requisite proof of Jesus’ deity and how can they be convinced of the divinity of the one whose very tomb has been discovered in this very country. Nay, more than this, they have in their midst the Promised Messiah whose appearance is in accordance with the Prophetic promises, at the close of the sixth and on the commencement of the seventh thousand year and with a host of heavenly signs.”
Dowie thinking way to high of himself, ignored this statement of the Promised Messiah, and continued to abuse and spread his false beliefs. His followers however told him about this and continued to bring his attention towards this statement of the Promised Messiahas. Dowie decided to reply and stated in December 27, 1902 in the Leaves of Healings:
“In India, there is a foolish Messiah who writes to me often telling me that the tomb of Jesus Christ is in Kashmir and the people sometimes say to me, why do you not reply to this and that or other things. Reply! Do you think, that I shall reply to these gnats and flies. If I put my foot on them, I would crush out their lives. I give them a chance to fly away and live.”
He further stated in a issue of the same month:
“My part is to bring out the people from the East and the West, from the North and the South and to settle them in the cities of Zion, until the time shall come, when all the Muhammadans are swept away.”
The Lion of Allah, Ahmadas replied once again stating:
“Whether the God of Muhammadans or the God of Dowie is the true God, may be settled without loss of millions of lives which Dr. Dowie’s prediction intended. The method is simple and plain. Without threatening the whole body of Muhammadans with destruction, he should choose me as his opponent and pray to God that of us two, whoever is the liar may perish first. I look upon the son of Mary as a weak human being, although I recognize him as a Prophet of God, while Dr. Dowie takes him as the Lord of the Universe. Which of us is on the right path is the real point at issue. If Dr. Dowie has the courage to accept the challenge, he will hereby open a way for all others to follow and accept the truth. Dowie fixes the appearance of the Promised Messiah within next twenty five years, while I give him the tidings that the Promised Messiah has already appeared. Let Dr. Dowie, like an honest gentleman, obtain permission from his Lord to accept the challenge and take his stand against me. I am an old man of 66 years and Dr. Dowie is eleven years younger (Age of Dowie was 55) therefore on grounds of age he need not have any apprehension. Moreover, I am suffering from various diseases and my life does not depend on health but upon the Will of God. If the self made deity of Dr. Dowie has any power, he shall certainly allow him to appear against me and procure my destruction in his lifetime, and he will have in his hand a clear manifestation of his mission.”
During this time, Ahmadas was not well known in America. Despite this, many American newspapers published this challenge which included:
Since Dowie was way to afraid to reply to the Promised Messiahas who was Sent by Allah, Ahmadas replied one more time stated on August 23, 1903:
“It should be borne in mind that Dr. Dowie has not given any reply to my challenge made in September last (1902) nor has he even so much as mentioned it in his paper (i.e., Leaves of Healings). For an answer to my challenge, I will wait for a further period of seven months from this day (i.e., August 23, 1903) if he accepts the challenge within this period and fulfills its conditions, as published by me, and makes an announcement to the effect in this paper, the World will soon see the end of this contest. I am about 66 years of age, while Dr. Dowie is about 55 years. Therefore, compared to me he is still young. Since the matter is not to be settled by age, I do not care for this great disparity in years. The whole matter rests in the Hands of Him, Who is the Lord of Heaven and Earth, and Judge over all the Judges and He will decide it in favor of the true claimant. But, if Dr. Dowie can not even now gather courage to appear in the contest against me, let both the continents bear witness that I shall be entitled to claim the same victory as in the case of his death in my life-time. If he accepts the challenge, the pretension of Dr. Dowie will be settled. Though he may try hard as he can to fly away from the death which awaits him, yet his flight from such a contest will be nothing less than a death to him and the calamity will certainly overtake him in Zion for he must face the consequences of either acceptance of the challenge or its refusal.”
Dowie wanted to continue to ignore this statement and spread his message even more. He decided to hold a huge rally in New York and this rally was marketted extremely well. On October 18, 1903 which was 57 days after the announcement of Ahmadas, this eent was to take place. The Madison Square Gardens was its venue and this venue is known well all around the world and is the most popular. During the day of the rally the entire venue was overflowing and thousands could not even come inside because of the event reaching its capacity. The people loved Dowie and loved his voice as well which was known to be his magic. His voice brought in many people to accept him and it was what attracted most people.
All of the followers of Dowie were extremely excited to hear him speak, but thi event did not go as planned and nor did his speech. His magic had left him and his speech was a disaster. He started horribly and then tried to make up for it but he stood there speechless. This was shocking to most as Dowie was known for his incredible speeches but words were not coming out of his mouth. The people who loved Dowie most began to leave him and people continued to leave in such large numbers that a stampede was formed. Thousands of people from New York were furious and they left the arena leaving Dowie in shame.
This conference was extremely anticipated, so much so, that the Chicago Examiner had published that this rally would have over one hundred thousand converts from New York. The New York American newspaper, the next day, had a huge headline stating : “New York- The Waterloo of the Elijah” while the New York Times had a heading which stated: “Massive Gathering Deserts Elijah”. Within two months of the challenge of Ahmadas, Dowie was humiliated. Because of Dowie’s failure in New York, he decided to go on a world tour to Hawaii, Australia, New Zealand, France, Germany, Italy and also to England. Despite his plans to win converts in these countries, it was a great downfall for him. In Honolulu, he was found with many differing girls dressed in an inappropriate manner, while in Australia he was not given accomodation by any hotel. His main follower who would publish his articles also left him. When we went to Germany, the American Ambassador did not take him to be worthy enough of a meeting with William Kaiser. When he went to England he was disrespected in a shocking manner. No one istened to him, so much so that he had to leave England. There is no possible reason for all of this humiliation, except for the wrath of Allah and the challenge of Ahmadas.
Zion was also dying out and became a horrible place to live not just for the followers of Dowie spiritually, but also in financial matters. Dowie was nearing his end. Two years later in September 1905, Dowie tried to have one last performance. He held a meeting on Sunday in September 1905, and as he started his performance, and the participants were claiming that it was a historical night, untilDowie went to make his veldictoy remarks during the end of the program. Dowie shook his right hand as if something bit him many times and he continued to do this as his followers watched in awe. Then all of a sudden he fainted and collapsed because of paralysis and the tongue which he wanted to abuse Islam with, became quiet. Dowie again suffered from a attack of paralysis in the same year and became totally crippled. His wife and son decided to disown him and he was exposed to having relations with several women. His closets were full of wine despite him denouncing such substances in front of the people which proved he was a liar to many followers of his.
Ahmadas on February 20, 1907 stated:
“God has informed me: I will reveal a fresh sign which will be a great victory. This will be a sign for the whole world.” (i.e., its appearance will not be confined to India only) The sign will be at the Hand of God and everyone should wait for it. God will manifest this sign shortly. It will be an evidence of divine help. It will be in testimony of this humble being who is being abused by all. Blessed is he, who hearkens this sign.”
Within a fortnight of this statement of the Messiah, Alexander Dowie was destroyed by Allah and passed away. Everyone knew that this was only because of his disrespect to Islam and the Prophets of Allah.
Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmadas stated:
” Be it clear that the man whose name is mentioned in the title was a bitter enemy of Islam. He was also a false claimant to prophethood, and believed that Muhammadsaw—the Chief of Prophets, the Most Truthful of the true, the Best of Messengers, the Leader of the Pure, the Chosen One of God—was a liar and impostor. Out of his evil nature, he would use extremely foul and obscene language with regard to the Holy Prophetsaw, and, because of his malice towards Islam, extremely evil traits were found in him. Just as swine see no value in pearls, so did he view the Islamic [concept of] Divine Unity with contempt and wanted to destroy it. He believed Jesus to be God and had such a passion for spreading the doctrine of Trinity in the world, that though I have read hundreds of books by Christian clergymen, I have not seen such passion in anyone else…I subscribed to his newspaper Leaves of Healing, and was constantly aware of his foul and abusive language. When his insolence had reached the limit, I sent him a letter in English in which I invited him to a mubahala [prayer-duel] so that God may cause the liar among us to die during the lifetime of the one who is truthful. This invitation was sent to him twice, in 1902 and again in 1903, and was also published in some well-known newspapers in America…It is only by the grace of God that the editors of these American newspapers, despite being Christians and hostile to Islam, published my article about mubahala so widely and with such enthusiasm that it became widely known throughout America and Europe, and the news of it even reverberated back to India. The gist of my mubahala was that Islam is the true faith and the Christian doctrine is false; and I am the Messiah who is from God, and whose coming in the latter days was promised in the scriptures of the Prophets. I also wrote that Dr. Dowie was false in his claim of Prophethood, as well as in his doctrine of Trinity, and that if he accepted the challenge of mubahala he would die within my lifetime in great pain and misery. Even if he did not accept the challenge, he would still not be able to escape Divine punishment. In response to this, the ill-fated Dowie published the following lines sometime in December 1903, and also in the 26th September, 1903 issue of his newspaper:
“There is a foolish Mohammedan Messiah in India who keeps on writing to me that Jesus Christ lies buried in Kashmir. People ask me why do I not reply to him. Do you think that I should reply to these gnats and flies? If I were to put my foot on them, I would trample them to death.”
In his issue of 19th December, 1902, he wrote:
“My mission is to gather people from the East and West, North and South, and populate this town and other towns with Christians, until the day arrives when the Mohammedan faith is effaced from the earth. O Lord! show us that hour.”
In short this man became more and more impudent after the publication of my mubahala in Europe, America, here in India, and effectively in the whole world. For my part I only waited, for I was sure that God would decide between us as I had beseeched Him to do, and His decision would distinguish between the liar and the truthful one. I kept praying to God asking for the death of the liar. Hence God Almighty informed me a number of times that I would be victorious and the enemy would be destroyed. Just fifteen days before Dowie’s death, God Almighty once again informed me of my victory through His revelation…
Thus the sign of Dowie’s death (which has resulted in a great victory) can serve as a luminous sign for the people of Asia, America, Europe and India. The other signs which have appeared as a result of my prophecies have been limited to the Punjab and India, and nobody in America or Europe knew about them. But this sign, which emerged as a prophecy from the Punjab, reached all the way to America, and found fulfilment in a person known by everyone in Europe and America. And no sooner had he died, than the news of his death was conveyed to India through telegrams. The news was published by The Pioneer (published from Allahabad), on 11th March, 1907, and by The Civil and Military Gazette (published from Lahore), on 12th March, 1907, and by The Indian Daily Telegraph (published from Lucknow), on 12th March, 1907. Hence the news was published round the world.
Such was the worldly status of this man that he was honoured like lords and princes…But despite the prestige and fame he enjoyed in America and Europe, it so happened, by the grace of God, that my mubahala against him was published in the major daily newspapers of America and became well-known all over Europe and America. And, after it became so widely publicized, the prophecy of his death and destruction was fulfilled with such clarity, that it is impossible to conceive anything more obvious and irrefutable. Every aspect of his life was stricken with calamity. He was found to be an embezzler and drinker, although he had prohibited the use of liquor in his teachings. In a state of great despair he was driven out of Zion—the city which he had himself established at a cost of millions of rupees. He was also deprived of seventy million rupees which he possessed in cash. His wife and son turned against him and his father even announced that he was an misbegotten son, and it was established before the people that his birth was illegitimate. As for his claim that he miraculously cured the sick, all such bragging and boasting turned out to be false, and he suffered all sorts of humiliation. He was finally afflicted with paralysis and had to be carried about by men like a wooden plank. Soon afterwards he went mad due to his intense grief and sorrow. His claim that he had a long life ahead of him and that he was getting younger by the day, while others were getting old, turned out to be another lie. Finally, in the first week of March 1907, he died in a state of great distress, pain and sorrow. Can there be a greater miracle? My true mission is to break the Cross, and a great part of the Cross has been broken with his death. Since he was the world’s foremost defender of the Cross, and claimed to be a Messenger, and claimed that all Muslims would be destroyed by his prayers, and Islam would be destroyed, and the Kaaba would fall into ruins, God Almighty therefore caused him to perish at my hands. I also believe that the prophecy about the ‘slaying of the swine’ has been clearly fulfilled with his death, for who could be more dangerous than the one who makes a false claim of Prophethood and eats the filth of falsehood like a pig? He himself wrote that nearly a hundred thousand wealthy people had joined him.
The fact is that Musailma, the Impostor, and Aswad ‘Ansi were nothing as compared to him. Neither of them enjoyed the popularity he did, nor did they possess millions of rupees like him. So I can swear by God that he was the same ‘swine’ whose death at the hands of the Promised Messiah had been foretold by the Holy Prophetsaw. Had I not invited him to mubahala, or invoked curse on him, or published the prophecy regarding his ruin, his death would not have served as a testimony to the truth of Islam. But since I had published beforehand in hundreds of newspapers that he would die during my lifetime, and I wrote time and again that I am the Promised Messiah and Dowie is a liar, and that the proof of this would be that he would die in ignominy and despair within my lifetime, that is why he met his death during my life. Can there be a greater miracle that testifies to the truth of the prophecy of the Holy
Prophetsaw? Only he who is the enemy of truth will deny it.
[Peace be on him who follows the guidance].
Announced by: Mirza Ghulam Ahmad The Promised Messiah Qadian, District Gurdaspur, Punjab 7th April, 1907 (Haqiqatul Wahi, Ruhani Khazain, Volume 22, Pages 504-516)