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Family of the Prophets in the Holy Quran – Part 21

May 01, 2022

Musa AS Wife

Musa AS Kills an Egyptian
Allah had granted Musa AS good health, strength, knowledge, and wisdom. The weak and oppressed turned to him for protection and justice.

One day in the main city, he saw two men fighting. One was an Israelite, who was being beaten by the other, an Egyptian. On seeing Musa AS, the Israelite begged him for help. Musa AS became involved in the dispute and, in a state of anger, struck a heavy blow on the Egyptian, who died on the spot. Upon realizing that he had killed a human being, Musa AS’s heart was filled with deep sorrow, and immediately he begged Allah for forgiveness.

He had not intended to kill the man. He pleaded with Allah to forgive him, and he felt a sense of peace filling his whole being. Thereafter Musa AS began to show more patience and sympathy towards people.

The next day he saw the same Israelite involved in another fight. Musa AS went to him and said: ‘You seem to be a quarrelsome fellow. You have a new quarrel with one person or another each day.” Fearing that Musa AS might strike him, the Israelite warned Musa AS: “Would you kill me as you killed that wretch yesterday?”

The Egyptian with whom the Israelite was fighting overheard this remark and reported Musa AS to the authorities. Soon thereafter, as Musa AS was passing through the city, a man approached and alerted him: “0 Musa, the chiefs have taken counsel against you. You are to be tried and killed. I would advise you to escape.”

Musa AS Leaves Egypt
Musa AS left Egypt in a hurry without going to Pharaoh’s palace or changing his clothes. Nor was he prepared for traveling. He did not have a conveyance upon which to ride, and he was not in a caravan. Instead, he left as soon as the believer came and warned him of Pharaoh’s plans.

He travelled in the direction of the country of Midian, which was the nearest inhabited land between Syria and Egypt. His only companion in this hot desert was Allah, and his only provision was piety. There was not a single root to pick to lessen his hunger. The hot sand burned the soles of his feet. However, fearing pursuit by Pharaoh’s men, he forced himself to continue on.

Musa AS Helps Women Shepherds
He travelled for eight nights, hiding during the day. After crossing the main desert, he reached a watering hole outside Midian where shepherds were watering their flocks.

No sooner had Musa AS reached Midian than he threw himself under a tree to rest. He suffered from hunger and fatigue. The soles of his feet felt as if they were worn out from hard walking on sand and rocks and from the dust. He did not have any money to buy a new pair of sandals, nor to buy food or drink. Musa AS noticed a band of shepherds watering their sheep. He went to the spring, where he saw two young women preventing their sheep from mixing with the others.

Musa AS sensed that the women were in need of help. Forgetting his thirst, he drew nearer to them and asked if he could help them in any way.

The older sister said: “We are waiting until the shepherds finish watering their sheep, then we will water ours.”
Musa AS asked again: “Why are you waiting?”
The younger one said: “We cannot push men.”

Musa AS was surprised that women were shepherding, as only men were supposed to do it. It is hard and tiresome work, and one needs to be on the alert. Musa AS asked: “Why are you shepherding?”

The younger sister said: “Our father is an old man; his health is too poor for him to go outdoors for pasturing sheep.”

Musa AS said: “I will water the sheep for you.”

When Musa AS approached the water, he saw that the shepherds had put over the mouth of the spring an immense rock that could only be moved by ten men. Musa AS embraced the rock and lifted it out of the spring’s mouth. Musa AS was certainly strong. He watered their sheep and put the rock back in its place.

He returned to sit in the shade of the tree. At this moment he realized that he had forgotten to drink. His stomach was sunken because of hunger.

Musa AS Finds a Home among Shepherds
The young ladies returned home earlier than usual, which surprised their father. They related the incident at the spring which was the reason that they were back early. Their father sent one of his daughters to invite the stranger to his home. Bashfully, the woman approached Musa AS and delivered the message. “My father is grateful for what you have done for us. He invites you to our home so that he may thank you personally.”

Musa AS accepted this invitation and accompanied the maiden to her father. Musa AS could see that they lived comfortably as a happy and peaceful household. He introduced himself and told the old man about the misfortune that had befallen him and had compelled him to flee from Egypt. The old man comforted him: “Fear not, you have escaped from the wrongdoers.”
Musa AS’s gentle behaviour was noticed by the father and his daughters. The kind man invited him to stay with them. Musa AS felt at home with this happy household, for they were friendly and feared Allah.

Musa AS Becomes a Shepherd
One of the daughters suggested to her father that he employ Musa AS, as he was strong and trustworthy. They needed someone like him, especially at the water hole, which was visited by ruffians.

The father asked her how she could be sure of his trustworthiness in such a short time. She replied: “When I bade him to follow me to our home, he insisted that I walk behind him so he would not observe my form (to avoid sexual attraction).”
The old man was pleased to hear this. He approached Musa AS and said: “I wish to marry you to one of my daughters on condition that you agree to work for me for a period of eight years.”

This offer suited Musa AS well, for being a stranger in this country he would soon have to search for shelter and work. Musa AS married the Midianite’s daughter and looked after the old man’s animals for ten long years.

The Ten Years of Preparation
Time passed, and he lived in seclusion far from his family and his people. This period of ten years was of importance in his life. It was a period of major preparation. Certainly Musa AS’s mind was absorbed in the stars every night. He followed the sunrise and the sunset every day. He pondered on the plant and how it splits the soil and appears thereafter. He contemplated water and how the earth is revived by it and flourishes after its death.

Of course, he was immersed in the Glorious Book of Allah, open to the insight and heart. He was immersed in the existence of Allah. All these became latent within him. The religion of Musa AS was the same as that of Yaqub AS, which was Islamic monotheism.

In addition to physical preparation, there was a similar spiritual preparation. It was made in complete seclusion, in the middle of the desert and in the places of pasture. Silence was his way of life, and seclusion was his vehicle. Allah the Almighty prepared for His prophet the tools he would need later on to righteously bear the commands of Allah the Exalted.

Lesson to Learn:
Islam has given us the sacred union of marriage through which families are created and expanded. It is important that we maintain and observe all the laws of Allah even prior to marriage and not engage in Haram and illicit relationships. Musa AS did not flirt with these girls and maintained his high character, nor did these girls engage in any sin. Allah thus brought them together through nikah.

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