In order to understand the status of Jerusalem in Islam, one must refer to the basic Islamic sources, namely the Holy Qur’an and the Sunnah (the sayings and/or actions by Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him), with their respective supporting text.
There are many verses in various chapters (surahs) that give an indication as to the status of Jerusalem in Islam, notably Surah Al-Isra', verse 1, wherein Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)
Moreover, the Prophet, peace be upon him, has said: “Saddles should not be prepared except for three mosques—Al-Haram Mosque (in Mecca), my mosque (in Medina) and Al-Aqsa Mosque (in Jerusalem).”
The Prophet, peace be upon him added: “Prayers in Al-Haram Mosque are equal to 100,000 prayers; in my mosque 1,000; and in Al-Aqsa 500.”
In another incident at the time of the Prophet, Abu Thar (may Allah be satisfied with him) asked Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, “Which mosque had been built first? The Prophet replied: Al-Haram, then Al-Aqsa was built 40 years later.”
In another Hadith, Abu Umama Al-Bahily said that Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him, said: “There are still a group of Muslims victorious by Right and superior to their foes until the Orders of Allah come. When asked where are they, the Prophet replied: In Jerusalem and its neighborhood.”
These aforementioned texts clearly show that Al-Aqsa Mosque is the location of the ascent of Prophet Muhammad, peace be upon him; the first kiblah for Muslims; one of the three holy mosques to be visited; the second mosque to be built on the globe; and a holy and sacred place where the reward for good deeds and actions are multiplied and sins are forgiven.
Muslims strongly believe that Jerusalem and its surrounding neighbourhood is holy land which can never be given up because it is a part of their faith. Muslims are the only people who believe in all the Prophets (peace be upon them all) from the time of Adam through to Prophet Muhammed (peace be upon him).
There is not even one statement in either the Qur’an or Sunna that attributes any sins or misdeeds committed by any of them. In addition, a Muslim’s faith will not be perfect unless they believe in all of the Prophets (Surat Al-Baqarah [The Cow], verses 136 and 285, as well as tens of verses in the Holy Qur’an which honour all of them because they have all brought the same message to mankind).
Thus, all Muslims are obligated to defend all religious places wherever they are because Muslims are the best and most honourable nation ever created for Mankind (Surat Al-Imran, verse 110; and Surat Al-Hajj, verse 78).
Actually, this a great responsibility compared with the Jews’ attitude toward the Prophets throughout history; they have been described in the Holy Qur’an, as well as in both the Old and New Testaments, as the murderers of Prophets, the Sons of Serpents, the Stray or Blind, and the Cursed and Condemned because of their disbelief in many of the Prophets. In this light, it is obvious that they would be unable to carry out this mission.
God said: “I will destroy Jerusalem and the Yahuda, and I will give them up for their enemy because they had bad conduct” (9 and 10), and “God has made this people blind to truth” (11). His guides went astray and became rude to the poor and orphans (12). It has been evidenced in the Bible that the Jews murdered several Prophets, namely Hezeqial, Esh’ia Bin Amous, Ermia, Zachariah, and his son Yahya (Jonah) (13). They tried to murder both Essa (Jesus) and Mohammed (peace be upon them both). Moreover, it is stated in the Bible that the Prophet Jacob (peace be upon him) decided to wipe out the Canaanites even though they believed in Judaism (14), but this is untrue because this would never be done by a Prophet. Then it has also been stated that all people are dogs and servants for the Jews who say that they did not occupy any land because it is their legacy which had been usurped by others (15). (**Refer the endnotes)
The Talmud states that all nations are cursed and condemned except the Jews, who are honourable and have the right to capture whatever the non-Jews have because they deserve to be murdered. As a result, how can such people be trusted to defend and protect the holy places and the human legacy (Surat Al-Baqarah, verse 61), and who has more right to do so, Muslims or Jews?
Muslims have always viewed Jerusalem as a holy place which must be defended because it is similar to Mecca in its holiness and has been for more than 14 centuries. These places must be protected given that Abraham, the Father of all Prophets (peace be upon them all), had built the Kaaba in Mecca and thereafter moved to Palestine where he passed away and was buried in Hebron near Jerusalem.
Muslims will never forget that they used to pray toward Jerusalem in the early stages of Islam before Allah ordered it to be changed to the Holy Shrine in Mecca. There is a mosque in Medina that still has the two directions (one pointing toward Jerusalem and one towards Mecca), namely Al-Qiblatain Mosque, as real evidence for this intimate connection between Jerusalem and Mecca.
On the other hand, Muslims still consider the places where God spoke to Moses; where David and Soloman repented to God and where the mountains and birds had been put in their service; where Issac asked his sons to bury him; and where Christ was born, spoke in the cradle, the banquet was descended from the Heavens, where he was raised to the Heavens and where Mariam passed away, as holy places to be guarded.
This is the real and sincere attitude of all Muslims toward Jerusalem, which shows their appreciation and respect for all Prophets and their holy places as an immense historical and religious responsibility. On the contrary to this honourable attitude, the Jews have been rude and aggressive toward all Prophets (peace be upon them all). They have changed and deformed all the real teachings and texts of the Bible. Muslims all over the world feel this responsibility because Muslims are ordered to defend and protect all of the Prophets’ legacy and heritage, and they must fight any Jewish attempt to deform and forge the truth and facts about these human issues.
9. Ibn Sa’ad, Al-Tabaqat Al-Kubra 7/406.
10. Dr. Rashad Al-Imam, Jerusalem in the Middle Ages, p. 62.
11. Find out about this fact in the verses 83-90 in Surat Al-An’am (The Cattle).
12. Kings II, 21:12-15.
13. Kings II, 21:16-17.
14. Esha’ia, 6:8-13.
15. Esha’ia, 9:13-17.
**Read full article here
**Also read "Dalil Isu Palestin Adalah Isu Umat Islam" article (For Malay readers)
Allahua'lam and peace be upon you. (^,~)v