In the Name of Allah, The Most Gracious, Most Merciful
- The battle of badr; hitory and lessons
1- The prophet (PBUH) talks to the killed disbelievers after the battle
''O people of the Qaleeb [a well wherein the noble Prophet (PBUH) bade his Companions to bury those who were killed of the people of Quraish in the battle of Bdr]! O ’Utba Ibn Rabi’a! O Shaiba Ibn Rabi’a! O Umaiya Ibn Khalaf! O Aba Jahl Ibn Hisham! Have you found that which your Lord promised you true? I have found that which Allah promised me true. You accused me of lying, but people believed me; you drove me out, but people sheltered me; and you fought me, but people supported me.” Then people said: “Do you talk to people who have died? He said: “You do not hear me more than they do, but they can not answer.”
What great words are those with which the Prophet (PBUH) addressed the killed people of Quraish whom he ordered to be buried in a well! That happened after the victory of the Muslims in the first battle between them and their enemies. They were victorious over their enemy though they were fewer in number and weaker, while their enemies were more numerous and stronger.
This decisive victory took place on the seventeenth of Ramadan in the second year after the Prophet’s Migration from Mecca to Medina. This battle was “The Great Battle of Badr”.
“Allah has helped you at Badr, when you were a contemptible little force”
2- The prophet's supplication to Allah at the night of the battle
The Prophet (PBUH) and his great Companions were desirous greatly to this victory which determined the fate of the new religion of Islam. If they had perished, Allah would have not been worshipped on earth after that.
One of the Prophet’s supplications to the Lord shortly before the clash between the two armies was:
“O Allah! If this group of people perishes, You will never be worshipped on earth after that.”
He raised his hands and supplicated eagerly:
“O my Lord! Achieve what You have promised me. O my Lord! I ask for Your supported Victory…” until his cloak fell off his honorable shoulders. So Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with him) came to put on his cloak for him and to console him; then he said to him: “O Messenger of Allah! Do not overdo in your beseeching your Lord, for He is sure to fulfill what He has promised you.”
3- Why did the prophet supplicate alot?
It might be asked: “Is it reasonable that the confidence of Abu Bakr in victory be stronger than that of the Prophet (PBUH)?” And it might be answered: “This eagerness and supplication on the part of the Prophet (PBUH) is because of his fear from negligence in preparing for the battle, then believers do not deserve victory and they do not attain it, for Allah’s Order for preparation is clear. He All Mighty says:
“Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power.”
4- The prophet checked the army before the battle
The number of fighters and the equipment of the Muslims in the battle of Badr were seemingly inadequate, for the Prophet’s Companions who went out with him were less than three hundred. But every one of them was equivalent to one thousand; and one thousand of their enemy were equivalent to nothing. Muslims loved death as much as their enemies loved life. The Prophet (PBUH) paraded his army, as what leaders do shortly before a battle, in order to find out their morale. Then he said:
“O people! – he meant Al-Ansar (the Helpers) for they were the majority – Counsel me.” Sa’ad Ibn Mu’ath said: “O Messenger of Allah! I think that you mean us.” He said: “yes.” Sa’ad said: “O Messenger of Allah! We have believed in you, we have testified that what you have brought is the Truth, and we have given you our pledges and covenants that we shall hearken and obey you. So proceed with us for what you want, for we are with you. I swear by Him Who has sent you with the Truth that if you ask us to wade into the sea with you, we shall do that, and none of us shall tarry or stay behind. We do not hate that you make us meet our enemy tomorrow. We are forbearing when in warfare, and veracious when meeting our enemies; so be on good terms with whomever you want, and forsake whomever you want; antagonize whomever you want, and make peace with whomever you want; take from our money whatever you want, and leave us whatever you want; and what you take from us is dearer to us than what you leave. May Allah let you see from us what makes you satisfied. So proceed with us with the blessing of Allah.”
This is one example of Muslim fighters on the night prior to the battle of Badr. They were ready to sacrifice everything, even their souls, for the sake of Truth, the Religion of Truth, and the Messenger of truth.
Concerning the quality of the leadership which led the Muslims to gain victory, we shall present some of the narrations which are mentioned in books of Islamic history. The Muslim army were fewer in number and less adequate in equipment. In fact, the Prophet (PBUH) and his Companions had nothing more than seventy camels, though the distance between Medina and Badr was more than one hundred and sixty kilometers. So the Prophet (PBUH) bade that every three men should share one camel. He said:
“Ali, Abu Lubaba, and I will share one camel”. Imam Ahmad narrated that Abdullah Ibn Mas’oud (may Allah be pleased with him) said: “On the day of Badr, every three of us shared one camel in turns. Abu Lubaba and Ali Ibn Abi Talib were the partners of the Messenger of Allah (PBUH). So when it was the Prophet’s turn to walk, they said to him: “We shall walk instead of you.” But he said: “No! You are not stronger than I am in walking; and I am in need of reward no less than you are.” So the Prophet (PBUH) walked while his partners were riding.” The man who was walking while his partners were riding was the Messenger of Allah (PBUH), and the leader of the Muslim army…
5- The prophet as the good example for leaders
After all the above-mentioned, shall we be surprised by the Companions’ courage, sacrifice, and proceeding bravely towards death, after having equalized himself with them in every thing?!...And shall we be surprised of their affection towards him, and their great love for him, after he had been to them a merciful father, a loving mother, a warmhearted brother, as well as a Messenger and a Prophet?!...
Allah speaks the Truth when He says:
“And you (stand) on an exalted standard of character.”
6- Victory is from Allah
What is the secret of such a great victory at which all believers rejoice? Who makes it? And what are the decisive factors therein? Beyond a shadow of doubt, it is Allah, the All Mighty, for He says:
“And there is no victory except from Allah.”
He, Glory be to Him, also says:
“If Allah helps you, none can overcome you; and If he forsakes you, who is there, after that, that can help you?”
In other words, if Allah is with you, who will be against you?! And if Allah is against you, who will be with you?!
7- Conditions of vitory; faith and preparation
But does not this victory, which is all from Allah, have rules and prerequisites? Does not it have price?
All such rules, conditions, and price can be summed up in two words: belief and preparation…Allah says:
“And it is due from us to aid those who believe.”
He, Praise be to Him, also says:
“Against them make ready your strength to the utmost of your power.”
Hence, belief is necessary but not at all sufficient; and preparation is also necessary but not at all sufficient. However, the relation between belief and victory is constant and undisputable. It is manifested by the following Koranic ayah:
“O Prophet! Rouse the believers to the fight, if there are twenty amongst you, patient and persevering, they will vanquish two hundred; if a hundred, they will vanquish a thousand of the unbelievers, for those are a people without understanding. For the present, Allah has lightened your (task), for He knows that there is a weak spot in you, but (even so), if there are a hundred of you, patient and persevering, they will vanquish two hundred, and if a thousand, they will vanquish two thousand, with the leave of Allah, for Allah is with those who patiently persevere.”
From the above noble ayah it is quite clear that the possibility of victory where belief is strong is one to ten; and when belief is weak, it is one to two. But when there is no belief, victory will be to those who are stronger in number and equipment. This is because belief alters man’s nature and changes his values and morals and aspirations. It exalts his tendencies and desires, minimizes his difficulties and anxieties, enhances his hopes and expectations, and turns his grief into happiness, and his loss into gain.
Let’s consider Al-Khansa’a, whose brother Sakhr died before she embraced Islam, she cried and made sh3er cry until she became blind. But after she embraced Islam, her four children were martyred in the Battle of Al-Qadisiyah. She said:
“Praise be to Allah who honored me by their death, and I hope that He reunifies me with them under His Mercy.”
8- Importance of faith for victory
This fact is confirmed by the commandment which Omar Ibn Al-Khattab (may Allah be pleased with him) sent to Sa’d Ibn Abi Waqqas (may Allah be pleased with him):
“I order you and the soldiers who are under your command to fear Allah in all situations, for fearing Allah is the best equipment, and the strongest stratagem in warfare. I order you all to be more careful of committing sins than your enemy, for fighters’ sins are more dangerous to them than their enemy. Muslim are granted victory because of their enemy’s disobedience to Allah; were it not for that, we would never be stronger than they are, for we are fewer than they are in number and less adequate in equipment. Therefore, if we are equal to them in disobedience, they will have the advantage of power over us.”
Belief means that man should believe definitely that there is a certain definite time determined for his death; and when such time comes, he can not postpone it even for one single moment. Only this, belief which infixes in man courage, bravery, and a spirit of sacrifice and altruism….
This is what Khalid Ibn Al-Waleed said when he was dying:
“I have taken part in seventy battles, or near that number, and there is no a place in my body wherein there is a blow by a sword or a stab by a spear. But now, here I am, dying on my bed. Let not the eyes of the coward sleep!”
What confirms the relationship between belief and victory is that difficult circumstances, before which a non-believer weakens and is humbles, and which determine his fate, do not affect a true believer. They by no means frustrate or prevent him from proceeding in carrying out his work, nor do they determine his fate which his enemy planned for him. To this effect, Allah, the Almighty, says:
“How many of the Prophets fought (in Allah’s Way), and with them (fought) Large bands of godly men! But hey never lost heart if they met with disaster in Allah’s way, nor did they weaken (in will) nor give in, and Allah loves those who are firm and steadfast.”
Also, in the battle of Mou`ta, Ja’far Ibn Abi Talib (may Allah be pleased with him) mounted his blond horse and held up the Muslim flag. He penetrated deeply with his sword into the Roman’s rows, until he was hit and his right hand was cut; so he held the flag by his left hand, which was also hit and cut. He held the flag by his chest and humeruses, until he was martyred. Allah speaks the Truth when He says:
“Truly man was created very impatient. Fretful when evil touches him, and niggardly when good reaches him. Not so are those devoted to prayer - those who remain steadfast to their prayer.”
9-Badr: a practical example of the relation between faith and victory
The practical application of the relationship between belief and victory was clearly manifested in the battle of Badr, for Muslims were only a weak few, while the polytheists were numerous and haughty. Muslims felt the need for Allah All Mighty and indeed turned to Him with sincere devotion; while the polytheists felt self-sufficient and powerful, turned away from Allah and displayed insolent arrogance to Him. Therefore, Muslims deserved victory because of their belief, their feeling of need, their supplication, and their good preparation. Allah, Praise be to Him, says:
“Allah has helped you at Badr, when you were a contemptible little force.”
In other words, Allah All High gave Muslims victory in the battle of Badr although they were weak and powerless. While in the battle of Hunain, Muslims were materially well prepared for victory. They enjoyed multitude of number and superiority of equipment; and they possessed all ostensible material elements of victory, as all Arabia was under their dominion. But they made a mistake when they put their trust in these reasons and elements, the thing which weakened their feeling of the need for Allah and their trust in Him. Therefore, they learned a painful lesson from Allah. In this context, Koranic ayahs go:
“And on the day of Hunain, behold! Your multitude elated you, but it availed you naught; and the land, for all that it is wide, did constrain you, and you turned back in retreat.”
10- We must prepare all kinds of available power
In the sight of Islam, preparation is also necessary but
not at all sufficient. It is a definitive Divine Order, for Allah says:
“Against them make ready of your strength to the utmost of your power, including steeds of war, to strike terror into (the hearts of) the enemies of Allah and your enemies.”
All believers are required to be well prepared in order to face the evil forces of infidels and aggressors. The phrase “to the utmost of your power” means sparing no efforts in doing that…not exerting only some efforts. The power which Muslims have to prepare includes all kinds of power that Muslims need for facing their enemies. These kinds of power include power of number, power of
equipment, power of training, power of planning, power of supply, power of supporting, a power of communication, power of information, power of defining targets, power of marksmanship, and power of mass media. Moreover, the word “of ” which comes before the word “strength” is mentioned in order that all kinds of powers be included. The phrase “steeds of war” is used as an example of strength in the general sense of the word. This preparation achieves its goals even if a confrontation might not take place. It is the horror of a strong one which is cast into the hearts of enemies, for Allah says:
“to strike terror into (the hearts of) the enemies of Allah and your enemies.”
Furthermore, the Prophet (PBUH) points out that power, all power, is represented in the precision of shooting and hitting targets. This is an everlasting criterion of power, and it is a decisive factor in achieving victory, whatever the arms and their specifications might be. The Prophet (PBUH) said:
“Verily, strength is in marksmanship, strength is in marksmanship, strength is in marksmanship! Because of one arrow, Allah enters three men into Paradise: its maker, its thrower, and its shooter.”
The above-mentioned facts, that are derived from the Quran, which is the system of life for believers, together with the detailed and illustrated instructions and directives extracted from the Tradition of our Prophet (PBUH) and his Sunna, and the most magnificent wise and moral attitudes of the Prophet (PBUH), who is our example, and those heroic attitudes of his noble Companions, who are the trustee of his Call, and the leaders of his armies, all these things are put before our Islamic nation, when it engages in warfare after another against its enemies, the enemies of Truth and Good.
In short, the noble Quran does not only give the word Jihad a unique, noble, and humanitarian connotation but also determines its sublime objectives, which are free from caprices, mundane interests as well as racial or personal aspirations. It also manifests its fundamentals, conditions and implementations.
 - See Sahih Al-Bukhari (5 \ 8), and Sahih Muslim (8 \ 1630).
 - It is agreed upon.
 - See “Sirat Ibn Hisham” (2 \ 194).
 - See “At-Tabakat Al-Kubra” by Ibn Sa’d.
 - See “Nihayat Al-Arab” by An-Nwairi (6 \ 168).
 - See “Siar Aa’lam An-Nubala” (1 \ 382).
 - It was narrated by Imam Ahmad in Al-Musnad (4 \ 146), and At-Termidhi (1637), and sh3er.