Friday, June 14, 2013

The 25 Prophets: (9) Luut (AS) (Lot)


He is Luut bin Haaraan (AS) the son of Ibrahim’s brother; and his mother was Ibrahim’s maternal aunt. Taarikh and his son Haaraan married the two daughters of Laahij and was born Ibrahim bin Taarikh and Luut bin Haaraan (AS). Sarah, Ibrahim’s wife is Luut’s half sister from mother’s side. Luut (AS) has been mentioned in the Holy Quraan twenty seven times in fourteen Suras. His father died while he was very young and was brought up together with his paternal uncle Ibrahim (AS) by Taarikh.

As we have seen in the earlier chapter, Ibrahim (AS) left Egypt together with Luut (AS) and Sarah, as these were the only people who believed in Ibrahim’s preaching, and they all went to Palestine. Luut (AS) stayed with his uncle Ibrahim (AS), but later was asked by him to go to the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, east of the Dead Sea, also known as Al-Muutafika as mentioned in the Quraan. (There is a lake in the Dead Sea known as Lake Luut). He instructed him to go there and preach to the people of Sodom, as they were corrupt and profane. He wanted him to get these people to leave these bad habits and to worship God. Luut (AS) was not one of their own brethren, as in the case of Saleh and Shuayb (AS). But he looked upon his people as his brethren, as a man of God always does.

These people were the biggest rogues who used to rob people of their belongings. They used to commit lewdness and the biggest transgression no people in creation ever did before. They practised their lust on men in preference to women.

Luut (AS) advised these people to stop all the bad habits and the things they were doing and turn to their God for forgiveness. He tried very hard but without success, he told them that God was very angry with them and that if they did not stop then they should expect punishment from their Lord.
He told his people: “Will you not fear God? I am to you an Apostle worth of all trust, so fear God and obey me, I ask no reward from you for it, my reward is only from the Lord of the Worlds. Of all the creatures in the world, you approach males and leave those whom God has created for you to be your mates? No you are people transgressing all limits.”

These people rejected his call and their reply was the same as that of the people who came before. They said to him: “Bring us the wrath of God if you are telling us the truth.”
More or less the same words which the people of Nouh, Huud and those of Saleh (AS) said to their Prophets. They also said: “Drive him and his followers out of your city, these are indeed men who want to be clean and pure.”
See how insulting these people were, instead of being ashamed on account of the consciousness of their own guilt they attacked the pure ones with their sarcasm and did not even want to see pious people among themselves advising them.
When Luut (AS) saw his people like this, he prayed to his Lord: “O my Lord! Help me against these people who do mischief!” God heard Luut’s pleas and sent his Messengers to deal with these people who were polluting the earth with their crimes.

As we have seen in the story of Ibrahim (AS), the Angels went to give him and his wife the good tidings of their getting a child. After entertaining them he asked them what was their mission after this, and they said: “We have been sent to a people (deep) in sin; to bring on them, (a shower of) stones of clay (brimstones), marked as from the Lord for those who trespass beyond bounds.”

Here Ibrahim (AS) requested these Messengers to defer their mission, as may be the people of Luut (AS) would listen to his preaching and repent. But at the same time he was also afraid that his nephew might be among those destroyed when the punishment is sent down to destroy his people.
Without hesitation he said: “But there is Luut there.”
They said: “We know well who is there, we will certainly save him and his followers, except his wife she is one of those who will remain behind.”

The Messengers thus left Ibrahim (AS) and Went to Sodom and appeared as two very handsome youths. When they arrived there, before entering the town they saw a young woman in a garden watering the trees. They approached and requested her if they could be her guests. She immediately felt sorry for them, because she knew that if the people of Sodom came to know of them they would want to do to them the dirty act (sodomy). She therefore asked them to wait and rushed to her father.
She said to her father: “There are two youths that I have never seen before around here and they seem to be strangers, they want to be our guests. I am afraid if the people came to know they would throng around them.”

The father was Luut (AS) and the woman was his daughter. He was astonished to hear this. At first he hesitated and did not want to go and meet these people, but their Angelic call made him go and meet them. He therefore met them and took them to his house, but was afraid that the news of their coming would reach his people. As his wife was one of them, the news immediately got spread out, and in no time there was a throng of people outside his house. He got very scared and did not know what to do. He tried to advise them to go away and leave his guests alone. They just laughed and mocked at him, they said jokingly to him to let them take these beautiful youths to their homes. He ignored them and went inside the house and closed the door behind him.

He later came out again and said to them: “O my people! Here are my daughters they are purer for you (if you marry)! Now fear God, and do not cover me with shame about my guests! Is there not among you a single right-minded man?”
Here his words ‘my daughters’ was meant the young girls of the town among themselves, and does not imply that he is giving away his daughters to these men.

Luut (AS) tried very hard to talk to his people but they refused to listen and said: “Well you know well we have no need of your daughters, indeed you know quite well what we want.”
These men came in an uproar, assaulted his house, and tried to snatch away the two handsome men. Luut (AS) tried to prevent them, but was powerless, and he said: “Had I had power to suppress you or that I could betake myself to some powerful support.”

The guests said: “O Luut! We are Messengers from your Lord by no means shall they reach you! Now get out with your family while it is dark and do not let any of you look back. But your wife will remain behind, and will happen to her what will happen to the people; morning is their appointed time.”
So Luut (AS) was commanded to leave Sodom that night and take his family with him except his wife for she was one of the wicked ones who refused to believe.

Luut (AS) had been preaching to them for some time against their immorality. The crisis of their fate came when the two Angels came to him in the guise of young handsome men. Darkness (blindness) fell on their eyes, as the first stage in their punishment. Despite this they said that this was only sorcery, so they felt their way to their homes, and before next morning the cities of the wicked were buried under a shower of brimstone. A violent wind and noise accompanying the shower of brimstones possibly with some volcanic action overtook them before morning. The cities were utterly destroyed, and even their precise position cannot be identified, but the brimstone plain of the tract still exists, right on the way between Arabia and Syria. The remains can be seen as a (Sign and Warning) for those who disbelieve in God, in the sulphury plain around the Dead Sea, a scene of dismal desolation which truly suggests the awful punishment for unspeakable crimes.

Luut (AS) and his believing household were saved. As we have seen that Luut’s wife was among those wicked ones and was destroyed with the rest of the people. God says in verse 10 of
Surat AtTahrim (lxvi) (The Forbidden):

God set forth, for an example to the unbelievers, the wife of Nuuh and the wife of Luut. They were (respectively) under two of our righteous servants, but they were false to their (husbands), and they profited nothing before God on their account, but were told: “Enter ye the Fire along with (others) that enter!

Reference: The Twenty five Prophets (The Parable of the Apostles Mentioned in the Holy Quraan)", by Nassir ibn Issa ibn Said Al-Kindy. (p 59-63)

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