Stories Of The Prophets

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  • Stories Of The Prophets

  • Prophet Dawud (David)



    David Challenges Goliath


    When the two armies faced each other, Goliath
    challenged any soldier from King Saul's army to single combat, as was
    the custom of battle in those days. Goliath also wanted to show off his
    strength. The men were terrorized, and no one had enough courage to
    volunteer. The king offered the hand of his pretty daughter in marriage
    to the man who would fight Goliath, but even this tempting offer did
    not change the deadly silence among his soldiers.

    Then, to everyone's surprise, a youth stepped forward.
    A roar of laughter echoed from the enemy's side, and even Saul's men
    shook their heads.

    The young man was David (Dawud), from the city of
    Bethlehem. His elderly father had chosen three of his sons to join
    Saul's army. He had instructed the youngest one, David, not to take
    part in the fighting but to help the army in other ways and to report
    to his father daily on what was happening on the war front.

    Although Saul was very impressed by the youth's
    courage, he said: "I admire your courage, but you are no match for that
    mighty warrior. Let the strong men come forward." David, however, had
    already decided and was willing to meet the challenge. Proudly, he told
    the king that only the day before he had killed a lion which had
    threatened his father's sheep, and on another occasion he had killed a
    bear. He asked Saul not to judge him by his appearance, for he feared
    no man or wild beast. Saul, surprised by young David's brave stance,
    agreed: "My brave soldier, if you are willing, then may Allah guard you
    and grant you strength!"

    David and Goliath

    The king dressed David in battle armor and handed him a
    sword, but David was not used to wearing battle dress. He felt
    uncomfortable in it, and it obstructed his movements. He removed the
    armor, then collected a few pebbles and filled his leather pouch with
    them. He slung it over his shoulder next to his sling. With his wooden
    staff in hand, he began to walk towards the enemy. Saul was worried and
    asked him how on earth, with a sling and a couple of stones was he
    going to defend himself against the giant? David replied: "Allah Who
    protected me from the claws of the bear and the fangs of the lion will
    certainly protect me from this brute!"

    When Goliath set eyes on the lean young man who looked
    like a boy, he laughed loudly and roared: "Are you out to play war with
    one of your playmates, or are you tired of your life? I will simply cut
    off your head with one swipe of my sword!"

    David shouted back: "You may have armor, shield, and
    sword, but I face you in the name of Allah, the Lord of the Israelites,
    Whose laws you have mocked. Today you will see that it is not the sword
    that kills but the will and power of Allah!"

    So saying, he took his sling and placed in it a pebble
    from his pouch. He swung and aimed it at Goliath. The pebble shot from
    the whirling sling with the speed of an arrow and hit Goliath's head
    with great force. Blood gushed out, and Goliath thumped to the ground,
    lifeless, before he had a chance to draw his sword. When the rest of
    his men saw their mighty hero slain, they took to their heels. The
    Israelites followed in hot pursuit, taking revenge for their years of
    suffering at the hands of their enemy, killing every soldier they could
    lay hands on. In this battle the Israelites regained the glory and
    honor that had been lost for a long time.

    David became a hero overnight. Saul kept his word and
    married his daughter Michal (Miqel) to the young warrior and took him
    under his wing as one of his chief advisors.

    Allah Gives David the

    Almighty Allah declared:

    "So they routed them by
    Allah's Leave and David killed Goliath, and Allah gave him (David) the
    kingdom (after the death of Saul and Samuel) and wisdom, and taught him
    of that which He willed. And if Allah did not check one set of people
    by means of another, the earth would indeed be full of mischief. But
    Allah is full of Bounty to the Alamin (mankind, jinns and all that
    exist). (Ch 2:251 Quran).

    David Becomes a Prophet

    David became the most famous man among the Israelites.
    However, he was not inveigled by this; he was not a prisoner of fame or
    leadership but a prisoner of Allah's love.

    Therefore, after killing Goliath he went out into the
    desert in the company of nature, glorifying Almighty Allah and
    contemplating His favors.

    "Verily, We made the mountains to glorify
    Our Praises with him (David) in the Ashi (after the mid-day till
    sunset) and Ishraq (after the sunrise till mid-day). And (so did) the
    birds assembled: all with him (David) did turn (to Allah, glorified His
    Praises). We made his kingdom strong and gave him wisdom and sound
    judgment in speech and decision. (Ch 38:18-20 Quran)

    Creatures such as the plants, birds, beasts, and even
    the mountains responded to his voice glorifying Allah. Allah had chosen
    David to be a prophet and revealed the Psalms to him. As He the
    Almighty said: "And to David We gave the Psalms." (Ch 17:55 Quran).

    David is Granted the Language of Animals

    David recited his scripture and glorified Allah while
    the mountains joined him praise and the birds rallied around him.
    Almighty Allah directed: Be patient (O Muhammad) of what they say,
    and remember Our slave David, endured with power. Verily, he was ever
    oft-returning in all matters and in repentance toward Allah. (Ch 38:17

    David's sincerity was not the only factor responsible
    for the birds and beasts joining with him in glorifying Allah, nor was
    the sweetness of his voice. IT was a miracle from Allah. This was not
    his only miracle, for Allah also endowed him with the faculty of
    understanding the languages of birds and animals.

    David's Fasting and

    David (pbuh) fasted every other day. Abdullah Ibn Amr
    Ibn Al-As narrated: Allah's Apostle (pbuh) said to me: "The most
    beloved fasting to Allah was the fasting of the Prophet David, who used
    to fast alternate days. And the most beloved prayer to Allah was the
    prayer of David, who used to sleep the first half of the night, and
    pray for one third of it and again sleep for a sixth of it.'" (Sahih

    Abdullah Ibn Amr Ibn Al-As also narrated: "The Prophet
    (pbuh) said to me: 'I have been informed that you pray all the nights
    and observe fast all the days; is this true?' I replied: 'Yes.' He
    said: 'If you do so, your eyes will be weak and you will get bored. So
    fast three days a month, for this will be the fasting of a whole year.
    (Or equal to the fasting of a whole year).' I said: 'I find myself able
    to fast more.' He said: 'Then fast like the fasting of (the Prophet)
    David (pbuh) who used to fast on alternate days and would not flee on
    facing the enemy.'" (Sahih Al-Bukhari)

    Iron Becomes Flexible
    for David

    Allah granted David great influence. His people had a
    great number of wars in their time, but they had a problem in that the
    iron armor was too heavy for the fighter to move and fight as he
    wished. It is said that David was sitting one day, contemplating this
    problem while toying with a piece of iron. Suddenly, he found his hand
    sinking in the iron. Almighty Allah had made it flexible for him:

    "And We made the iron soft for him." (Ch 34:10 Quran)

    Saul Becomes Jealous of David

    The people praised and loved David. However, the hearts
    of men are fickle and their memories short. Even great men can feel
    insecure and become petty-minded. One day David found Saul in a worried
    state. He sensed something strange in Saul's attitude towards him. That
    night, when he shared his feeling with his wife, she started to weep
    bitterly and said: "O David, I will never keep any secrets from you."
    She told him that her father had become jealous of his popularity and
    feared that he would lose his kingdom to him. She advised him to be on
    his guard.

    This information shocked David very much. He prayed and
    hoped that Saul's good nature would overcome the darker side of his
    character. The following day, Saul summoned David to inform him that
    Canaan had gathered its forces and would march on the kingdom. He
    ordered David to advance on them with the army and not to return unless
    victory was gained.

    David sensed that this was an excuse to get rid of him;
    either the enemy would kill him, or in the thick of battle, Saul's
    henchmen might stab him in the back. Yet he hastened with his troops to
    meet the army of Canaan. They fought the Canaanites brav, without
    thinking of their own safety. Allah granted them victory, and David
    lived to return to Saul.

    Saul Plots to Kill

    Unfortunately, this only increased Saul's fear, so he
    plotted to kill David. Such is jealousy that not even a daughter's
    well-being mattered. Michal learned of her father's plan and hurried to
    warn her husband. David gathered some food and things, mounted his
    camel and fled. He found a cave in which he remained hidden for many

    After a time, David's brothers and some citizens joined
    with him. Saul's position became very weak, for he began to rule with a
    heavy hand. He ill-treated the learned, tortured the reciters of the
    Talmud, and terrorized his soldiers. This worsened his position, and
    his subjects began to turn against him. He decided to go war against
    David. Hearing this news, David marched to confront Saul's army.

    David Forgives Saul

    The king's army had traveled a great distance and was
    overcome by fatigue, so they decided to rest in a valley, where they
    fell asleep. Quietly, David crept up to the sleeping Saul, removed his
    spear, and cut off a piece of his garment with the sword. David then
    awakened the king and told him: "Oh king, you come out seeking me, but
    I do not hate you, and I do not want to kill you. If I did, I would
    have killed you when you were asleep. Here is a piece of your garment.
    I could have hacked your neck instead, but I did not. My mission is
    that of love, not malice." The king realized his mistake and begged for

    David Becomes King

    Time passed and Saul was killed in a battle in which
    David did not take part.

    David succeeded Saul, for the people
    remembered what he had done for them and elected him king. So it was
    that David the Prophet was also a king.

    Allah strengthened the dominion
    of David and made him victorious. His kingdom was strong and great; his
    enemies feared him without engaging in war with him.

    David's Son Solomon

    David had a son named Solomon (Sulaiman), who was
    intelligent and wise from childhood. When the following story took
    place, Solomon was eleven years old.

    One day David, was sitting, as usual, solving the
    problems of his people when two men, one of whom had a field, came to
    him. The owner of the field said: "O dear Prophet! This man's sheep
    came to my field at night and ate up the grapes and I have come to ask
    for compensation." David asked the owner of the sheep: "Is this true?"
    He said: "Yes, sir." David said: "I have decided that you give him your
    sheep in exchange for the field." Solomon, to whom Allah had given
    wisdom in addition to what he had inherited from his father, spoke up:
    "I have another opinion. The owner of the sheep should take the field
    to cultivate until the grapes grow, while the other man should take the
    sheep and make use of their wool and milk until his field is repaired.
    If the grapes grow, and the field returns to its former state, then the
    field owner should take his field and give back the sheep to their

    David responded: "This is a sound judgment. Praise be
    to Allah for gifting you with wisdom. You are truly Solomon the Wise."

    David as a Ruler

    Prophet David was a just and righteous ruler who
    brought peace and prosperity to his people, and whom Allah honored as a
    messenger. He delivered Allah's message to the people through the
    precious gift of his melodious voice. When he recited the Psalms
    (Zaboor), it was as if the rest of creation chanted with him; people
    listened as if in a trance. The messages David delivered are famous and
    well remembered. They are known in the Bible as the Psalms or Songs of

    David divided his working day into four parts: one to
    earn a living and to rest, one to pray to his Lord, one to listen to
    the complaints of his people, and the last part to deliver his sermons.
    He also appointed deputies to listen to his subjects' complaints so
    that in his absence people's problems might not be neglected.

    Although a king, he did not live on the income of his
    kingdom. Being well-experienced in the craft of weapon-making, he made
    and sold weapons and lived on that income.

    Angels Teach David
    About Fairness

    One day, as David was praying in his prayer niche, he
    ordered his guards not to allow anyone to interrupt him, but two men
    managed to enter and disturb him. "Who are you?" he asked. One of the
    men said: "Do not be frightened. We have a dispute and have come for
    your judgment." David said: "What is it?" The first man said: "This is
    my brother, has ninety nine sheep, and I have one. He gave it to me but
    took it back." David, without hearing from the other party said: "He
    did you wrong by taking the sheep back, and many partners oppress one
    another, except for those who are believers."

    The two men vanished like a cloud, and David realized
    that they were two angels sent to him to teach him a lesson. He should
    not have passed a judgment without hearing from the opposing party.

    Almighty Allah told us of this incident: And has
    the news of the litigants reached you? When they climbed over the wall
    into (his) Mihrab (a praying place or a private room). When they
    entered in upon David, he was terrified of them, they said: Fear not!
    (We are) two litigants, one of whom has wronged the other; therefore
    judge between us with truth, and treat us not with injustice, and guide
    us to the Right Way."

    "Verily, this is my brother (in religion) has ninety
    nine ewes, while I have only one ewe, and he says: 'Hand it over to
    me,' and he overpowered me in speech."

    David said immediately without listening to the
    opponent: "He has wronged you in demanding your ewe in addition to his
    ewes. And, verily, many partners oppress one another, except those who
    believe and do righteous good deeds, and they are few."

    And David guessed that We have tried him and he
    sought Forgiveness of his Lord, and he fell down prostrate and turned
    to Allah in repentance. So We forgave him that, and verily, for him is
    a near access to Us, and as good place of final return Paradise.

    O David! Verily! We have placed you as a successor
    on earth, so judge you between men in truth and justice. And follow not
    your desire for it will mislead you from the Path of Allah. Verily!
    Those who wander astray from the Path of Allah shall have a severe
    torment, because they forgot the Day of Reckoning. (Ch 38:21-26 Quran).

    The Death of Prophet David

    David worshipped Allah, glorified Him and sang His
    praise until he died. According to traditions, David died suddenly and
    was mourned by four thousand priests as well as thousands of people.

    was so hot that people suffered from the intensity of the sun. Solomon
    called the birds to protect David and the people from the sun, and they
    did so until he was buried. This was the first sign of his dominion to
    be witnessed by the people.


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