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Stories Connected to Jesus

CHAPTER VII

STORIES CONNECTED WITH JESUS

   A., 10.--It is related that Jesus (God's blessings and peace be upon him!) went out to pray for rain, and when [the disciples] became bored, Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said to them, "Whoever of you has committed sin, let him return." Then they all returned, and only one man remained with him in the desert. Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said to him, "Have you never committed a sin?" He replied, "By God, I am aware of nothing except that one day when I was praying a woman passed me and I looked at her with this eye; but when she passed me I put my finger in my eye, plucked it out, and threw it after the woman." Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said to him, "Do you pray to God, that I may say Amen to your prayer!" So he prayed and the sky was covered with clouds, and the rain poured down and they were provided with water. [Cf. A., 201, p. 121.]

   A., 39.--`Omar, son of Sa`îd, said: Jesus (Peace be upon him!) passed a village, and lo! all its people were dead in the open spaces and the roads. Then he said, "O company of the p. 96 disciples, these people died because of [God's] anger, for if they had died from any other cause they would have buried one another." They said, "O Spirit of God, we should like to know what happened to them." So he asked God (Exalted is He!) and He revealed to him, "When night comes, call to them and they will answer you." When night came, he went up on a hill and called, "O people of the village!" Then one answered him, "At your service, O Spirit of God." He asked, "What is your condition, and what happened to you?" He replied, "At night we were in health and in the morning we were in hell." He said, "How did that come about?" He replied, "By our love of the world and our obedience to the people of disobediences." He said, "What kind of love had you for the world?" He replied, "The love of a boy for his mother; when it approached we rejoiced in it, and when it turned its back we grieved and wept for it." He said, "What is the matter with your companions that they have not replied to me?" He said, "Because they are bridled with bridles of fire in the hands of rough, mighty angels." He said, "Then how did you answer me from among them?" He replied, "Because I was among them but was not of them. Then when the punishment descended on them it smote me along with them, and I was suspended on the brink of Jahannam, p. 97 not knowing whether I should escape from it, or be overturned into it." Then the Messiah said to the disciples, "Verily the eating of barley bread with pounded salt, and the wearing of sackcloth, and sleeping on dunghills often accompanies health in this world and the next."

   A., 54.--The following is related on the authority of Jarîr, on the authority of Laith. A man accompanied Jesus, son of Mary (Peace be upon him!), and said, "I will be with you and will accompany you." So they set off and came to the bank of a river and sat down to breakfast; and they had three loaves. They ate two loaves, and a third loaf was left over. Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) rose up and went to the river and drank, after which he returned, but did not find the loaf; so he said to the man, "Who took the loaf?" He replied, "I do not know." Then he set off with his companion and saw a gazelle with two of her young. The narrator says, He called one of them and it came to him; then he cut its throat and roasted part of it, and he and that man ate. Then he said to the young gazelle, "Rise, by the permission of God." When it rose and went away, he said to the man, "I ask you by Him who has shown you this sign, Who took the loaf?" He replied, "I do not know." Afterwards they came to a wadi with water in it and Jesus took the man's hand and they walked on the water. Then when p. 98 they had crossed he said to him, "I ask you by Him who has shown you this sign, Who took the loaf?" He replied, "I do not know." Then they came to a desert and sat down, and Jesus (Peace be upon him!) began to collect earth and a heap of sand, after which he said, "Become gold, by the permission of God (Exalted is He!)." It became gold, and he divided it into three parts and said, "A third is for me, a third for you, and a third for him who took the loaf." Then he said, "I am the one who took the loaf." He said, "It is all yours." Jesus (Peace be upon him!) then left him and two men came to him in the desert while he had the wealth with him and wished to take it from him and kill him. He said, "It is among us in thirds; so send one of you to the village to buy food for us to eat." The narrator said: They sent one of them, and he who was sent said [to himself], "Why should I divide this wealth with these men? I shall put poison in this food and kill them and take the wealth myself." So he did so. And these two men said, "Why should we give this man a third of the wealth? When he returns we shall kill him, and divide the wealth between us." The narrator said: So when he returned they killed him and ate the food and died; and that wealth remained in the desert with those three men lying dead beside it. Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) p. 99 passed them in that condition and said to his companions, "This is the world; so beware of it."

   [In Asin's collection this is followed by three variations of the same story.]

   A., 67; M., 59.--It is related that a robber had been committing highway robbery among the Children of Israel for forty years. [One day] Jesus (Peace be upon him!) passed by followed by a pious man of the Children of Israel who was one of the disciples. Then the robber said to himself, "This is the prophet of God who is passing with his disciple beside him; if I went down, I should make a third with them." So he went down and began to make to approach the disciple, but he was despising himself out of respect for the disciple, and saying to himself, "The like of me cannot walk beside this pious man." [The narrator] said: The disciple noticed him and said to himself, "This man is walking beside me." So he drew himself together and went to Jesus (Blessing and peace be upon him!) and walked beside him, and the robber remained behind him. Then God (Exalted is He!) revealed to Jesus (Blessing and peace be upon him!), "Tell them to begin their works afresh, for I have nullified their past works. As regards the disciple, I have nullified his good deeds because of his self-conceit; and as regards the other, I have nullified his evil deeds because he despised himself." So [Jesus] informed them about that, p. 100 and joined the robber to himself in his wandering and made him one of his disciples. [Cf. A., 137, p. 109.]

   A., 84.--It is related that Jesus (Peace be upon him!) passed three people whose bodies were wasted and who were pale and said, "What has brought on you that which I see?" They replied, "Fear of hell." He said, "It is God's duty to render secure him who fears." Afterwards he passed from them and came to other three, and lo! they were in greater emaciation and paleness, so he said, "What has brought on you that which I see?" They replied, "Desire of Paradise." He said, "It is God's duty to give you what you hope for." After that he passed from them and came to other three, and lo! they were in still greater emaciation and paleness as though mirrors of light were over their faces, so he said, "What has brought on you that which I see?" They replied, "We love God (Great and glorious is He!)." He said, "You are those who are nearest to God; you are those who are nearest to God; you are those who are nearest to God."

   [This is followed in Asin's collection by a variant of the same story.]

   A., 84 ter.--It has reached us that Jesus, son of Mary (Peace be upon him!), passed four hundred thousand women who looked pale and who were wearing tunics of hair and wool. Jesus p. 101 (Peace be upon him!) said, "What has made you pale, O companies of women?" They replied, "The thought of hell has made us pale, O son of Mary; he who enters hell will not taste cold or drink."

   A., 88; M., 67.--It is related that Jesus (Peace be upon him!) passed a man who was blind, leprous, lame, paralysed on both sides, whose flesh was falling from elephantiasis, but who was saying, "Praise be to God who has kept me free from that with which He has afflicted many of His creatures!" Then Jesus said, "O man, what affliction do I see removed from you?" He replied, "O Spirit of God, I am better than he in whose heart God has not put the knowledge of Himself which He has put in my heart." He said to him, "You have spoken the truth; give me your hand." He gave him his hand, and lo! he became the most beautiful of men in face and the finest in figure, for God had removed from him what he was suffering from. So he accompanied Jesus (Peace be upon him!) and worshipped with him.

   A., 99.--It is said that while Jesus (Peace be upon him!) was sitting and an old man was working with a spade with which he was stirring up the ground, Jesus said, "O God, take away hope from him." Then the old man put away the spade and lay down and remained for a time. Jesus then said, "O God, restore hope to him," p. 102 and he got up and began to work. Jesus asked him about that and he said, "While I was working, lo! my soul said to me, 'How long are you going to work, for you are a very old man?' So I threw away the spade and lay down. Then my soul said to me, 'By God, you must have food as long as you remain;' so I arose to my spade."

   A., 102; M., 77.--It is related that Jesus (Peace be upon him!) passed by a skull and kicked it with his foot and said, "Speak, by the permission of God." It said, "O Spirit of God, I was a king at such and such a time. While I was sitting in my kingdom on my throne of state with my crown on my head and my troops and my suite around me, lo! the angel of death appeared to me. Then every limb of mine perished when he appeared, and my soul went out to him. So would that there had been abandonment with respect to those companies! And would that there had been solitude with respect to that society!"

   [This is followed in Asin's collection by four other accounts of the story of the skull. The following is the fourth and longest of them.]

   A., 102 quinquies.--The story of the skull. It is mentioned, but God knows best, that Jesus (Peace be upon him!) one day passed a wadi called the Wadi of the Resurrection, and lo! he saw a white skull whose bones were crumbling. Its whiteness astonished him, for its owner had p. 103 been dead for seventy-two years; so Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said, "O God, whom eye cannot see, or opinions disorder, or men describe, I ask Thee to permit this skull to tell me to what people it belonged." God revealed to him, "O Jesus, speak to it and it will speak to you by My power, for I am omnipotent." [The narrator] said: Then Jesus performed his ablutions, and having prayed two rek`as, approached it and said, "In the name of God, the Merciful, the Compassionate." Then the skull answered him with ready tongue, and it was saying, "O Spirit of God, you have named the best of the names." Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said to it, "I ask you by the mighty God, will you not tell me where are the beauty and the whiteness, and where are the flesh and the fat, and where are the bones and the spirit?" Then it replied to him, "O Spirit of God, as regards the beauty and the whiteness, the dust has changed them; and as regards the flesh and the fat, the worms have eaten them; and as regards the bones, they have crumbled; and as regards the spirit, it is to-day in hell in severe punishment." Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said to it, "I ask you by the mighty God, to what people did you belong?" It replied to him, "O Spirit of God, I belonged to a people with whom God was angry in the world." He asked it, "How was God angry with you in the world?" It replied to him, "O Spirit p. 104 of God, God sent us a prophet who brought us the truth, but we rejected him, and who commanded us to obey God, but we disobeyed Him; so God sent down on us rain and thunderbolts for seven years and seven months and seven days. Then one day some of the avenging angels alighted upon us, every one of whom had two whips, one of iron and one of fire; and an angel kept grasping my soul from joint to joint, and from vein to vein, till the soul reached the windpipe." The skull said: "After that the angel of death stretched out his hand and took out my soul." Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said to it, "I ask you by the mighty God, will you not describe to me the angel of death?" It replied to him, "O Spirit of God, he has a hand in the East and a hand in the West; his head is in the top of the seventh heaven and his feet are in the lowest borders of the seven [lit. seventh] earths; the world is between his knees and created things are before him." It continued, "O apostle of God, only an hour later two black and blue angels came to me with voices like resounding thunder and eyes like swift lightning and short, curly hair, who were piercing the earth with their nails. Then they asked me, 'Who is your Lord, and who is your prophet, and who is your imâm?' [leader in theology]. I was terrified at them, O Spirit of God, and said to them, 'I have no Lord, or prophet, or imâm but God.' They said p. 105 to me, 'You are lying, O enemy of God and of your soul;' and gave me a terrible blow with a sledge-hammer of iron, from the violence of which blow I felt my bones were broken and my chin rent; and they threw me into the depths of Jahannam where they punished me as God wills. While I was in that condition the two recording angels who write down what people do in the world came and said to me, 'O enemy of God, journey with us to the dwellings of the people of Paradise.'" It continued, "So I journeyed with them to the first of the gates of Paradise, and lo! Paradise had eight gates made of bricks of gold and silver; its earth is musk, its grass is saffron, its stones are pearls and jacinths, its rivers are milk and water and honey, its inhabitants have the neighbouring planets as friends restricted in tents, [The text at this point is not clear; the translation of this phrase is therefore a conjecture.--JR] the work of Him who possesses glory and honour. I rejoiced in it, O Spirit of God; then they said to me, 'O enemy of God and of yourself, you did not do good in the world that this might be yours; but journey with us to the dwellings of the people of hell.'" It went on, "Then I journeyed with them to the first of the gates of hell in which snakes and scorpions were whistling, and I asked them 'For whom is this punishment?' They replied to me, 'For you and for those who devour p. 106 the property of orphans by oppression.'" It continued, "Thereafter I journeyed with them to the second gate and lo! there were men suspended by their beards like dogs, with blood and pus before them for food. I asked them [the angels], 'For whom is this punishment?' They replied to me, 'For you, and for those who drink wine in the world and eat what is forbidden.'" It continued, "I then journeyed with them to the third gate, and lo! there were men with fire entering their mouths and coming out at their backs. I asked, 'For whom is this punishment?' They replied to me, 'For you, and for those who reproach virtuous women in the world.'" It went on, "I journeyed next with them to the fourth gate, and lo! there were Women hanging by their tongues with fire coming out of their mouths. I asked them [the angels], 'For whom is this punishment?' They replied to me, 'For you, and for those who neglect prayer in the world.'" It continued, "Afterwards I journeyed with them to the fifth gate, and lo! there were women suspended by their hair with fire above them. I asked them [the angels], 'For whom is this punishment?' They replied to me, 'For you, and for those who adorn themselves in the world for people who are not their spouses.'" It continued, "Then I journeyed with them to the sixth gate, and lo! there were women suspended by their hair and their p. 107 mouths. I asked them [the angels], 'For whom is this punishment?' They replied to me, 'For you, and for the women who go astray in the world.'" It went on, "Thereafter I journeyed with them to the seventh gate, and lo! there were men under whom was a well called Hell's Well into which I was thrown, O Spirit of God, and in which I have endured fierce punishment and seen many terrible things." Then Jesus (Peace be Upon him!) said, "O skull, if you wish, ask me for something, by the permission of God." It said, "O Spirit of God, pray God for me to send me back to the world." So he prayed to God for it, and He brought it to life for him and sent it back for him sound by the power of God (Praise be to Him!). It remained for twelve years worshipping God along with Jesus (Peace be Upon him!) until the inevitable, i.e. death, came to it. It then died in faith, and God in His mercy made it one of the people of Paradise.

   A., 106.--It is related concerning Jesus (Peace be upon him!) that he came on a fire which was kindled over a man in the desert. Jesus then took water to put it out, and the fire changed into a youth, and the man changed into fire. So Jesus (Peace be upon him!) wept and said, "O Lord, restore them to their former state that I may see what their sin was." Then that fire was removed from them, and lo! they were a man and a youth. The man said, "O Jesus, p. 108 I have been afflicted in the world by love of this youth, and desire urged me on until I sinned with him one Thursday night, after which I sinned with him another day. Then a man came upon us and said to us, 'Woe to you! Fear God!' I replied to him, 'I am not afraid, and I do not fear.' Then when I died, and the youth died, God (Great and glorious is He!) turned us into what you see. Sometimes he becomes fire and burns me, and sometimes I become fire and burn him. And this is our punishment until the Day of Resurrection."

   A., 120.--In one of the books which have been translated [it is said] that John and Simon were among the disciples. John never sat in any company without laughing and making those around him laugh; and Simon never sat in any company without weeping and making those around him weep. [Once] Simon said to John, "How often you laugh, as though you had ceased from your work!" John replied to him, "How often you weep, as though you had despaired of your Lord!" Then God revealed to the Messiah, "The more attractive of the two natures to Me is John's nature."

   A., 121.--In a book also [it is said] that Jesus, son of Mary, met John, son of Zechariah (Blessing and peace be upon them!) and John smiled to him. Then Jesus said to him, "Verily you smile the smile of a believer." John said to him, "Verily you frown the frown of a despondent p. 109 one." God then revealed to Jesus, "What John does is more attractive to me."

   [While the two preceding passages presumably come from the same source, it should be noted that in the Arabic there is no confusion between the two Johns. In 120 the name is Yuhannâ, and in 121 it is Yahyâ.]

   A., 131.--It is mentioned that Jesus (Peace be upon him!) used to raise the dead to life by the permission of God (Exalted is He!). Some unbelievers [once] said to him, "You have raised people who have died recently, and perhaps they were not dead; so raise for us one who died in the earliest times." He said to them, "Choose whom you will." They said, "Raise for us Shem, son of Noah." Then he came to his grave and prayed two rek`as and called on God (Exalted is He!), and God raised Shem, son of Noah, and lo! his head and beard had become white. But someone said, "What is this? There were no white hairs in your day." He replied, "I heard the summons, and I thought the Resurrection had come, so the hair of my head and beard became white from terror." Someone asked, "How long have you been dead?" He replied, "For four thousand years; but the agony of death has not left me yet."

   A., 137.--In the time of Jesus (Blessing and peace be upon him!) there was a man called Accursed for his avarice. One day a man who p. 110 wished to make a raid came to him and said, "O Accursed, give me some arms to help me in my raid, and by so doing you will be safe from hell"; but he turned away from him and gave him nothing. The man then turned back, but the accursed one repented and called to him and gave him his sword. The man returned, and Jesus (Peace be upon him!), accompanied by a pious man who had worshipped God for seventy years, met him and said to him, "Where have you come from with this sword?" He replied, "The accursed one gave me it." So Jesus rejoiced at his almsgiving. The accursed one was [one day] sitting at his door, and when Jesus (Peace be upon him!) passed him accompanied by the pious man, the accursed one said to himself, "I will arise and look at the face of Jesus and at the face of the pious man." So when he arose and looked at them the pious man said, "I shall fly and run from this accursed one before he burns me with his fire." Then God (Great and glorious is He!) revealed to Jesus (Peace be upon him!), "Say to My servant, I have forgiven this sinner because of his almsgiving with the sword and because of his love for you; and say to the pious man, Verily he will be your friend in Paradise." The pious man said, "By God, I do not wish Paradise in his company, neither do I wish a friend like him." So God (Great and glorious is He!) revealed to Jesus p. 111 (Peace be upon him!), "Say to My servant, Verily you were not pleased with My decree and you despised My servant, so I have made you accursed among the people of hell; I have changed your abodes in Paradise for his in hell, and have given your abodes in Paradise to My servant and his abodes in hell to you." [Cf. A., 67; M., 59, p. 99 ?].

   A., 138.--`Abdallah, son of Habân, al Bokhârî told us on the authority of Abû al Faraj al Azdî that Jesus, son of Mary (Peace be upon them!), passed by a village in which was a fuller. The people of the village said, "O Jesus, verily this fuller tears our clothes for us and keeps them; so pray to God that He should not let him come back with his bundle." So Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said, "O God, do not let him come back with his bundle." [The narrator] said: Then the fuller went away to clean the clothes, and he had three loaves with him. And one who was practising devotion in those hills came to the fuller and said to him, "Have you any bread to give me to eat, or to show me that I may smell its odour? For I have not eaten any bread for such and such a time." So he gave him a loaf, and he said, "O fuller, God forgive you your sin and purify your heart!" Then he gave him the second, and he said, "O fuller, God forgive you your past and your future sins!" So he gave him the third to eat, and he said, p. 112 "O fuller, God build you a palace in Paradise!" The fuller returned safe in the evening and the villagers said, "O Jesus, this fuller has come back." He said, "Call him." Then when he came to him he said, "O fuller, tell me what you did to-day." He replied, "One of the pilgrims of those hills came to me asking for food and I gave him three loaves to eat, and with every loaf I gave him he offered up prayers for me." Jesus (Blessing and Peace be upon him!) said, "Bring your bundle that I may look at it." He gave him it and he opened it, and lo! there was in it a black snake curbed with an iron curb. Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said, "O black one!" It replied, "At your service, O prophet of God!" He said, "Have you not been sent to this man?" It replied, "Yes, but a pilgrim from those hills came to him and asked him for food, and with every loaf he gave him to eat he offered up a prayer for him, and an angel was standing and saying 'Amen!' Then God (Exalted is He!) sent an angel to me and he curbed me with an iron curb." Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said, "O fuller, recommence your work, for God has forgiven you by the blessing of your almsgiving to Him." [Cf. A., 210, p. 126.]

   A., 143 bis.--The prophet--i.e. Mohammad--(God bless him and grant him peace!) said that God commanded John, son of Zechariah, five words according to which he was to act, and he p. 113 was to command the Children of Israel that they should act according to them, but he was on the point of delaying with them. So Jesus said, "Verily God has commanded you five words according to which you should act, and you must command the Children of Israel that they should act according to them; so either you must command them, or I will command them." John said, "I am afraid that if you precede me with them, I may be swallowed up or punished." Then he gathered the people tagether in Jerusalem, and the mosque was full and they sat on the pinnacles; and he said, "Verily God commanded me five words according to which I should act and should order you to act according to them. The first is that you should worship God and associate nothing with Him; for he who associates anything with God is like a man who buys a slave with all his property, in gold or documents, and says, 'This is my house and this is my work, so work and bring me profit,' then he works and brings profit for someone else. So which of you wishes to be like that? And verily God commands you to practise prayer; and when you pray, do not turn about, for God directs His face to His servant's face in his prayer so long as he does not turn about. And He commands you to observe fasting, for that is like a man in a company who has a purse in which is musk whose perfume pleases them all, or p. 114 pleases him; and verily the perfume of him who fasts is better in God's estimation than the perfume of musk. And He commands you to give alms; for that is like a man whom the enemy have taken captive and bound his hand to his neck and put him forward to execute him [lit. to strike his neck], who says, 'I will ransom it [his neck] from you by little or by much;' so he ransoms himself from them. And He commands you to glorify God; for that is like a man in pursuit of whom the enemy go out in haste until he comes to a strong fort and preserves himself from them. Similarly the worshipper preserves himself from the devil only by glorifying God."

   [Although this is attributed to John the Baptist, it is included because Jesus is said to have been prepared to say it if John did not.]

   A., 148.--It is related in the record that Jesus (Blessing and peace be upon him!) passed a village; and in that village there was a hill, and in the hill there was great weeping and wailing. He said to the villagers, "What is this weeping and this wailing in this hill?" They replied, "O Jesus, from the time we settled in this village we have been hearing this weeping and this wailing in this hill." Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said, "O Lord, permit this hill to speak to me." God gave the hill utterance and it said, "O Jesus, what do you p. 115 want from me?" He said, "Tell me the meaning of your weeping and wailing." It said, "O Jesus, I am the hill from which the idols were being hewn which men worship instead of God, and I am afraid lest God (Exalted is He!) should cast me into the fire of Jahannam, for I heard God saying, 'Fear hell whose fuel is men and stones.'" [Korân II, 22; LXVI, 6.] Then God revealed to Jesus (Blessing and peace be upon him!), "Say to the him, Be at peace, for I have protected it from Jahannam."

   A., 151.--Jesus, son of Mary (Peace be upon them!), passed a graveyard and called to a man in it. Then God (Exalted is He!) brought him to life, and [Jesus] said, "Who are you?" He replied, "I was a carrier, carrying things for people. One day I carried some firewood for a man and broke off a piece of it with which I was pierced; and I am being sued for it since my death."

   A., 152.--It is related that Jesus (Blessing and peace be upon him!) passed a grave and kicked it with his foot and said, "O you who are in the grave, arise by the permission of God (Exalted is He!)." Then a man arose from the grave and said, "O Spirit of God, what do you want with me? For I have been standing in judgment for seventy years till I heard the shout, 'Answer the Spirit of God.'" Jesus said, "O you, you have committed many faults and sins, so what did you do?" He replied, "O Spirit of God, p. 116 I was a seller of fuel who carried firewood on my head and ate what was allowable and gave alms." Jesus said, "Praise be to God! A seller of fuel who carried firewood on his head and ate what was allowable and gave alms, and he has been standing in judgment for seventy years!" Then Jesus asked him about what his Lord said to him in the judgment, and he said, "O Spirit of God, one of the rebukes of my Lord was that He said, 'Do you remember the day My servant, so and so, hired you to carry a bundle of firewood for him, and you took a piece of wood from it and were pierced with it and threw it away from its place in the bundle out of your despite for Me, although you knew that I am God who looks at your work and your intention?'"

   A., 164.--It is related on the authority of Mohammad, son of Abû Mûsâ, concerning Jesus, son of Mary (Peace be upon him!), that he passed an afflicted man and treated him kindly and said, "O God, I beseech Thee to heal him." Then God (Exalted is He!) revealed to him, "How can I heal him from that with which I am healing him?" [Showing that bodily trouble may lead to spiritual advantage.]

   A., 170.--Jesus (Peace be upon him!) passed a young man watering a garden, and the young man said to Jesus, "Ask your Lord to provide me with an atom of His love." Jesus replied, "You are not able for an atom." So he said, p. 117 "Half an atom." Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said, "O Lord, provide him with half an atom of Thy love;" after which Jesus (Peace be upon him!) went away. A long time afterwards, when he passed that young man's place, he asked about him and the people said, "He became possessed and went to the mountains." Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) prayed God to show him to him, and he saw him among the mountains and found him standing on a high rock whose tip reached to the sky. Jesus (Peace be upon him!) saluted him, but he did not return the salutation; so he said, "I am Jesus." Then God (Exalted is He!) revealed to Jesus, "How can he in whose heart is half an atom of My love listen to the words of men? By My might and glory, if I were to cleave him with a saw, he would not be aware of that!" [Cf. A., 189, p. 120.]

   A., 171.--It is related in the stories that John [the Baptist] and Jesus (Peace be upon them!) were walking in the market when a woman knocked against them. Then John said, "I am not cognisant of that." Jesus said, "Praise be to God! Your body is with me, but where is your heart?" He replied, "O cousin, if my heart found rest in something other than God for the twinkling of an eye, I should think that I had not known God."

   A., 178.--Wahb, son of Munabbih, said: Jesus, son of Mary (Peace be upon him!), went out one p. 118 day with a company of his companions and when the day was advanced they passed a field where the corn was ready to be rubbed, and they said, "O prophet of God, verily we are hungry." Then God revealed to him, "Give them permission concerning their food." So he gave them permission, and they separated in the field rubbing and eating. But while they were doing that, the owner of the field came, and he was saying, "It is my field and my land which I inherited from my ancestors. By whose permission are you eating, you people?" [The narrator] said: Then Jesus prayed to his Lord, and God (Exalted is He!) raised up all who had possessed that land from the time of Adam till that time. Then lo! beside every ear, or what God wills, was a man or woman, all of them shouting, "It is my field and my land which I inherited from my ancestors." The man was terrified at them--and word of Jesus (Peace be upon him!) had reached him, but he had not recognised him--so when he recognised him, he said, "I apologise to you, O apostle of God. My field and my possessions are at your disposal." Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) wept and said, "Woe to you! All these have inherited this land and have peopled it, then have gone away from it; and you too will go away from it, and overtaking them, will have no land or possessions."

   A., 179.--Mâlik, son of Anas, said: It reached p. 119 me that two women came to Jesus (Peace be upon him!) and said, "O Spirit of God, pray to God for us to bring forth our father for us, for he perished and we are absent from him." He said, "Do you know his grave?" They replied, "Yes." So he went with them, and they came to a grave and said, "This is it." Then he prayed to God and one was brought forth to them, but lo! it was not he; so he prayed and he was sent back. Then they led him to another grave and he prayed that he should be brought forth, and he came forth, and lo! it was he. They clung to him and saluted him and said, "O prophet of God, O teacher of good, pray God to make him stay with us." He said, "How can I pray for him when no provision by which he may live has been left for him?" Then he sent him back and departed.

   A., 151.--Mâlik, son of Anas, said: It reached me that Jesus (Peace be upon him!) came to a village whose fortresses had fallen in ruins, whose streams were dried up, and whose trees were blighted. Then he called, "O ruin, where are your people?" But no one answered him. Again he called, "O ruin, where are your people?" But no one answered him. Then a voice cried, "Jesus, son of Mary, they perished and the earth swallowed them up, and their works returned as chains on their necks till the Day of Resurrection." So Jesus (Peace be upon him!) wept.

p. 120

   A., 183.--Joseph, son of Asbât, said: One of the disciples died and they grieved bitterly for him and complained of that to the Messiah (God bless him and grant him peace!). Then he stood over his grave and prayed, and God (Exalted is He!) brought him back to life; and he had on his feet sandals of fire. Jesus asked about that and he said, "By God, I was never disobedient, except that [once] I passed one who was wronged and did not help him, so I was shod with these sandals."

   A., 189.--It is related that Jesus (Peace be upon him!) one day passed a hill in which he saw a cell. He drew near it and found in it a devotee whose back was bent, whoge body was wasted, and in whom austerity had reached its utmost limits. Jesus saluted him and wondered at his evidences [of devotion] which he saw. So Jesus said to him, "How long have you been in this place?" He replied, "For seventy years I have been asking Him for one thing which He has not granted me yet. Perhaps you, O Spirit of God, may intercede for me concerning it, then possibly it may be granted." Jesus said, "What is your requirement?" He replied, "I asked Him to let me taste the amount of an atom of His pure love." Jesus said to him, "I shall pray to God for you about that." So he prayed for him that night, and God (Exalted is He!) revealed to him, "I have accepted your p. 121intercession and granted your request." Jesus (Peace be upon him!) returned to him to the place after some days to see what the condition of the devotee was, and saw the cell had fallen down and a great fissure had appeared in the ground below it. Jesus (Peace be upon him!) went down into that fissure and went some leagues in it and saw the devotee in a cave under that him standing with his eyes staring and his mouth open. Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) saluted him, but he did not give him an answer. While Jesus was wondering at his condition someone shouted to him, "O Jesus, he has asked us for something like an atom of Our pure love, and We knew that he was not able for that, so We gave him a seventieth part of an atom, and he is bewildered in it thus; so what would it have been like if We had given him more than that?" [Cf. A., 170, p. 116.]

   A., 201.--It is related that Jesus, son of Mary, (Peace be upon him!) went out with the people to pray for rain; and God revealed to him, "Do not ask for rain while sinners are with you." Jesus told them of that and shouted among them, "Let him among us who belongs to those who have committed faults and sins depart." The narrator said: All the people departed except one man who had something wrong with his right eye. Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said to him, "Why did you not depart with the people?" p. 122 He replied, "O Spirit of God, I have never disobeyed God with the glance of an eye; but [once] I turned and looked unintentionally with this eye at a woman's foot, so I plucked it out; and if I had looked with the other eye, I would have plucked it out." [The narrator] said: Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) wept till his beard became wet with his tears, and said to him, "Do you pray to God for us!" He said, "God forbid that I should pray, when you are God's Spirit and Word!" Then Jesus (Peace be upon him!) raised his hands and said, "O God, verily Thou hast created us and hast stood security for our provisions; so send the sky raining copiously upon us." Jesus (Peace be upon him!) had not finished his prayer before the rain descended and covered the worshippers and the country. [Cf. A., 10, p. 95.]

   A., 202.--It is related that John [the Baptist] and Jesus (Blessing and peace be upon them!) went together on a journey, and John (Peace be upon him!) once slept during worship which Jesus (Peace be upon him!) performed. Jesus (Peace be upon him!) wished to waken him, but God (Exalted is He!) revealed to Jesus (Blessing and peace be upon him!), "O Jesus, verily John's spirit is with Me in My holy presence and his body is before Me in My earth; and I have made him excel in beauty the noble ones of My angels."

   A., 203.--The historians and biographers p. 123 mentioned that a man called Isaac, belonging to the Children of Israel, in the time of Jesus, son of Mary (Peace be upon them!), had a cousin who was one of the most beautiful people of her time to whom he was devoted. She died, and he attached himself to her grave and remained for a time visiting her regularly. One day Jesus passed him when he was weeping at her grave, and Jesus (Peace be upon him!) said to him, "What is making you weep, Isaac?" He replied, "O Spirit of God, I had a cousin who was my wife, whom I loved ardently; but she has died and this is her grave, and I am unable to be patient without her, for separation from her has killed me." Jesus said to him, "Would you like me to bring her to life for you by God's permission?" He said, "Yes, O Spirit of God." So Jesus stood over the grave and said, "Arise, you who are in this grave, by God's permission." Then the grave burst open and a black slave came out of it with fire issuing from his nostrils and eyes and the other openings of his face, and he was saying, "There is no God but God. Jesus is God's Spirit and Word, His servant and His apostle." Isaac said, "O Spirit and Word of God, this grave is not the one in which my wife is, this is it;" and he pointed to another grave. So Jesus said to the black one, "Return to the condition in which you were." He fell down dead and he hid him in his grave. Thereafter p. 124 he stood over the other grave and said, "Arise, you who are dwelling in this grave, by God's permission." Then the woman arose, and she was scattering the dust from her face. Jesus said, "Is this your wife?" He replied, "Yes, O Spirit of God." He said, "Take her by the hand and go away." He took her and went off, but he became sleepy and said to her, "Watchfulness at your grave has killed me, so I want to take some rest." She said, "Do so." Then he put his head in her lap and slept. While he was sleeping the king's son passed her; he was beautiful and good-looking, with lordly mien, and was riding on a fine horse. When she saw him she fell in love with him and rose up quickly to him; and when he saw her she affected his heart. Then she came to him and said, "Take me;" so he took her up behind him on his horse and went on. When her husband arose and looked and did not see her, he arose to search for her. He followed the traces of the horse and overtook them and said to the king's son, "Give me my wife who is my cousin." But she denied him and said, "I am the slavegirl of the king's son." He said, "No, you are my wife and my cousin." She said, "I do not know you; I am only the slavegirl of the king's son." Then the king's son said to him, "Do you want to corrupt my slavegirl?" He said, "By God, she is my wife, and Jesus, son of Mary, raised her for me p. 125 by God's permission after she had been dead." While they were disputing, Jesus (God bless him and grant him peace!) passed, and Isaac said, "O Spirit of God, is not this my wife whom you brought to life for me by God's permission?" He said, "Yes." She said, "O Spirit of God, he is lying, for I am the slavegirl of the king's son." And the king's son said, "This is my slavegirl." Jesus said, "Are you not she whom I raised to life by God's permission?" She said, "No, by God, O Spirit of God." He said, "Then restore to us what we gave you;" and she fell down dead. Then Jesus said, "Whoever wishes to look at a man whom God caused to die while he was an unbeliever, then brought him to life and caused him to die a Muslim, let him look at that black one; and whoever wishes to look at a woman whom God caused to die while she was a believer, then brought her to life and caused her to die an unbeliever, let him look at this woman." And Isaac, the Israelite, covenanted with God (Exalted is He!) that he would never marry; and he wandered aimlessly like a madman in the deserts, weeping.

   A., 208.--I saw in a book that Jesus (Blessing and peace be upon him!) passed a man who was making donkey-saddles and saying in his worship, "O Lord, if I knew where Thine ass is on which Thou ridest, I would make a saddle for it and inlay it with jewels." Then the Messiah shook p. 126 him and said, "Woe to you! Has God (Exalted is He!) an ass?" Then God (Exalted is He!) revealed to Jesus (Blessing and peace be upon him!), "Leave the man alone, for he has glorified Me according to his ability."

   A., 210.--It is related that some people passed Jesus, son of Mary, and he said, "One of these will die to-day, if God will." Then they went away. In the evening they returned to him with bundles of firewood, and he said, "Put them down." Then he said to him of whom he said that he would die that day, "Loosen your firewood." He loosened it, and lo! there was a black snake in it. Jesus said, "What have you done to-day?" He replied, "I have done nothing." He said, "Consider what you have done." He said, "I have done nothing, except that I had a piece of bread in my hand, and a poor man passed me and begged from me and I gave him some of it." Then he said, "By it [death] was averted from you." [Cf. A., 138, p. 111.]

   The following saying about Jesus is attributed to Mohammad.

   A., 211.--Verily God (Exalted is He!) has sent me out of mercy to all men. Summon [them] in my name (God have mercy on you!) and do not disagree as the disciples disagreed with Jesus, for he summoned them to do something similar to that to which I summon you, and those who p. 127 were in his vicinity believed. It displeased him, and Jesus, son of Mary, complained of that to God; and in the morning every man of them was speaking the language of the people to which he went. Then Jesus said to them, "This is a matter upon which God is resolved for you; so go and accomplish it."

   A., 222.--It is related that Jesus (Peace be upon him!) one day passed a man standing between two graves, who was bowing and worshipping. He saluted him and said, "I see you between these two bowing and worshipping." He replied to him, "They are my parents who were kind and gentle to me; so when they died I took an oath on myself that I would worship God between their graves till I died." He asked him, "How long, sir, have you been doing this?" He replied, "Three hundred years." He said, "Has any news come to you from God (Exalted is He!) that He has forgiven you, or have you any request to Him, or have you prayed to Him about anything?" He replied, "No news has come to me; but I have had a request to Him: I prayed to Him that He should let me meet Jesus, but I do not know whether He has accepted my prayer or not." Then Jesus said to him, "Be of good cheer; He has accepted your prayer. I am Jesus." He said to him, "O Jesus, by Him who has accepted my prayer, would you not stretch out your leg that I might place my head p. 128 on it for an hour?" So Jesus (Peace be upon him!) stretched out his leg, and he put his head on it and lifted up his eyes to heaven and said, "O God, by the honour of this prophet with Thee, as Thou hast accepted my prayer and caused me to meet him, I beseech Thee to take my spirit in his bosom." He had not come to the end of his prayer before he died with his head in the lap of Jesus (Peace be upon him!). Then Jesus looked for something in which to shroud him, but found nothing for him except his worn cloak and a brick which he used to use when he wished to sleep. So Jesus said, "O Lord, when Thou hast gathered the first ones and the last ones, and askest them about what they have gained, about what wilt Thou ask this servant?" Then God revealed to him, "O Jesus, by My greatness and My majesty, I will ask him about this cloak, whence he acquired it, and about this brick, from what ground he made it, or from what wall he took it. Verily I have sworn by Myself, if an oppressor comes near Me, I will be an oppressor. By My greatness and My majesty, I will make him who mixes water with bricks separate the water from the bricks." Then Jesus prayed, "O God, forgive us by Thy mercy, and favour us with Thy kindness and Thy Paradise; and pardon us all and make us die Muslims and join us to the upright. And praise be to God, the Lord of the worlds!"