Night of Power
Surah Al-Qadr (Surah 97 – The Power) describes the Night of Power when the Qur’an was first revealed
We have indeed revealed this (Message) in the Night of Power:
And what will explain to thee what the night of power is?
The Night of Power is better than a thousand months.
Therein come down the angels and the Spirit by God’s permission, on every errand: Peace!…This until the rise of morn!(Surah Al-Qadr 97:1-5)
Surah Al-Qadr, though describing the Night of Power as ‘better than a thousand months’ still asks what the Night of Power was. What was the Spirit doing that made the Night of Power better than a thousand months?
Day of Glory
Surah Al-Layl (Surah 92 – The Night) has a very similar theme of Day and light follow the Night. The Day comes in Glory, and Allah guides because He knows everything from Beginning to End. Therefore He warns us of Fire at the End.
By the Night as it conceals (the light);
By the Day as it appears in glory;(Surah Al-Layl 92:1-2)
Verily We take upon Ourselves to guide,
And verily unto Us (belong) the End and the Beginning.
Therefore do I warn you of a Fire blazing fiercely;(Surah Al-Layl 92:12-14)
Compare Surah Al-Qadr and Surah Al-Layl with the following:
And we have the word of the prophets made more certain, and you will do well to pay attention to it, as to a light shining in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts.
Do you see similarities? When I read Surah Al-Qadr and Surah Al-Layl I thought of this quotation. It also declares a Day rising after a Night. During the night, revelation was given to prophets. It also warns us not to ignore the prophetic messages. Otherwise, we face severe consequences.
The Apostle Peter, the leading disciple and companion of the Prophet Isa al Masih (PBUH) wrote this. Surah As-Saf (Surah 61 – The Ranks) says about the disciples of Isa al Masih:
O ye who believe! Be ye helpers of God: As said Jesus the son of Mary to the Disciples, “Who will be my helpers to (the work of) God?” Said the disciples, “We are God’s helpers!” then a portion of the Children of Israel believed, and a portion disbelieved: But We gave power to those who believed, against their enemies, and they became the ones that prevailed.(Surah As-Saf 61:14)
Surah As-Saf declares that the disciples of Isa al Masih were ‘God’s helpers’. Those who believe the message of the disciples receive this power. As the leading disciple, Peter was the leader of the ones helping God. Though he was a disciple of the prophet Isa al Masih PBUH, witnessing his many miracles, hearing his many teachings, and seeing his authority exercised, Peter still declared above that the words of the prophets were even ‘more certain’. Why was he more certain of the prophets than what he himself witnessed? He continues:
Above all you must understand that no prophecy of scripture came about by the prophet’s own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit(2 Peter 1:20-21)
This tells us that the Holy Spirit of God ‘carried’ the prophets along, so that what they recited and then wrote down was ‘from God’. This is why a Night like this is better than a thousand months because it is rooted in the Holy Spirit rather than in ‘the will of man’. Surah As-Saf tells us that those who pay attention to Peter’s message will receive the Power that was exercised on the Night of Power and will prevail.
Word of the Prophets
Living in the time of the Prophet Isa al Masih, the ‘prophets’ that Peter wrote about were the prophets that are in what now is called the Old Testament – the Holy Books that came before the Injil. In the Taurat of Prophet Musa were the accounts from Adam, Qabil & Habil, Nouh, Lut and Ibrahim. As well it included the accounts of when Musa confronted Pharaoh and then received the Shariah Law, and also the sacrifices of his brother Harun, from which Surah Baqarah is named.
Following the close of Taurat came the Zabur where Dawud spoke of the coming Masih. Successive prophets then prophesied of the Masih coming from a Virgin, of the Kingdom of Allah being open for all, and also of great suffering for the coming Servant. Then the name of the Masih was prophesied, along with the time of his coming, as well as the Promise of the Preparer.
Many of us have not had the chance to read these writings for ourselves. Here, with these different links, is an opportunity. Surah Al-Layl warns of a coming Fire. Next, Surah Al-Qadr declares that the Spirit of God was at work in the Night of Power. Finally, Surah As-Saf promises Power to those who believe the message of the disciples. Peter, leader of these disciples, then advises us to ‘pay attention’ to the revelation of the earliest prophets, given in the Night, who looked forward to the Day. Would it not be wise to know their messages?