Today we will take a look at the second incident which transpired during the journey of Musa عليه السلام and Khadir and see what lessons we can derive from there.
So having disembarked from the boat the two servants of Allah were walking when Khadir approached a young boy and hit the boy causing the boy to die instantly. Musa عليه السلام was perturbed by this action of Khadir and immediately questioned him about it. Khadir later explained to Musa عليه السلام the reason why he did it.
وَأَمَّا الْغُلَامُ فَكَانَ أَبَوَاهُ مُؤْمِنَيْنِ فَخَشِينَا أَن يُرْهِقَهُمَا طُغْيَانًا وَكُفْرًا
“And as for that young man, his parents were [true] believers – whereas we had every reason to fear that he would bring bitter grief upon them by [his] wickedness and denial of all truth.” [Al Kahf 18: 80]
فَأَرَدْنَا أَن يُبْدِلَهُمَا رَبُّهُمَا خَيْرًا مِّنْهُ زَكَاةً وَأَقْرَبَ رُحْمًا
“And so we desired that their Sustainer grant them in his stead [a child] of greater purity than him, and closer [to them] in loving tenderness.” [Al Kahf 18: 81]
Almost every couple and parents dream is to have children, and many of them will confirm that children are from amongst the greatest bounties of Allah. However, it is important to understand that not every child is a blessing. A child can also be a means of distress, torment and sorrow for the parent, by being rebellious, disobedient, ungrateful and wicked, as the Holy Quraan describes them as (طُغْيَانًا وَكُفْرًا). This is especially true for the children Allah gives to disbelievers.
فَلَا تُعْجِبْكَ أَمْوَٰلُهُمْ وَلَآ أَوْلَـٰدُهُمْ ۚ إِنَّمَا يُرِيدُ ٱللَّهُ لِيُعَذِّبَهُم بِهَا فِى ٱلْحَيَوٰةِ ٱلدُّنْيَا وَتَزْهَقَ أَنفُسُهُمْ وَهُمْ كَـٰفِرُونَ
“Let not their wealth nor their children dazzle you: in reality Allah’s plan is to punish them with these things in this life, and that their souls may perish in their (very) denial of Allah.” [At Tauba 9: 55]
In the Noble Q uraan, Allah gives two examples of Prophets عليهما السلام who were tested through their children. The son of Nuh عليه السلام refused to believe in Allah, therefore Allah made him from among the disbelievers who drowned and Allah even commanded Nuh عليه السلام not to regard this rebellious son as part of his family.
قَالَ يَـٰنُوحُ إِنَّهُۥ لَيْسَ مِنْ أَهْلِكَ ۖ إِنَّهُۥ عَمَلٌ غَيْرُ صَـٰلِحٍ ۖ
Allah replied: “O Nuh! In fact he is not of your family; for he is not of righteous conduct. [Hud 11: 46]
The second example is the difficulties which the sons of Yacoob عليه السلام had put their father through.
A very painful experience that some parents have to go through, is losing a child. But Allah has a perfect reason for everything and by making a child die in his or her youth, it is highly probable that via this tragic demise, Allah is actually saving the parents of this child from an even bigger future torment, grief, or sorrow. Allah might also be intending to give to the parents another child who is purer in character, and more righteous (خَيْرًا مِّنْهُ زَكَاةً); who will be more merciful and kind towards them (أَقْرَبَ رُحْمًا) than the one who Allah took away.
The scholars have also written that from this there is a subtle lesson to the student of Deen that it is necessary to kill one’s unlawful desires, as well as the demonic and selfish influences that exist within him if one wishes to gain from the special knowledge which Allah only grants to his selected servants.