The news that the Muslims were
living in peace reached Makkah and the Quraish could not accept
this. They decided to send Abdullah Ibn Abu Rabiáh and
Amr Ibn al As Ibn Wa'il with lavish gifts to bribe the Negus
and convince him to return the Muslims to them.
But, the Negus disliked forsaking
those who had sought his shelter. He said, "No, By Allah,
I will not surrender them." He summoned the Muslims to
his court and asked them to explain to him what their religion
was all about. Ja'far Radhi Allahu Anhu rose and explained :
"0 King, we were an unenlightened
people plunged in ignorance. We worshipped idols, we ate dead
animals and we committed abominations. We broke natural ties,
we ill-treated our neighbours and our strong oppressed our weak.
This is how we lived until Allah raised among us a prophet whose
noble birth, lineage, truthfulness, honesty and purity we knew.
He invited us to acknowledge the oneness of Allah, to worship
Him and to renounce the stones and idols we and our forefathers
used to respect. He enjoined us to speak the truth, to redeem
our pledges, to be kind and considerate to our family and neighbours.
He forbade us from every vice, bloodshed, shamelessness, lies
and deceit and asked us not to encroach upon the wealth of orphans
or to vilify chaste women. He commanded us to pay divine honours
to Allah alone and never associate partners with Him. He ordered
us to offer prayers, to pay the Zakaah and to fast.
We acknowledged his truth and believed
in him. We followed him in whatever he brought from Allah. We
worshipped only one Allah without associating partners with
Him. We treated as unlawful what he forbade and accepted what
he made lawful for us. For this our people persecuted us, they
tried to mislead us from our faith and forced us to return to
idol worship and the other evils we used to commit before.
When they tortured us, made us
suffer under their tyranny and stood between us and our religion,
we fled to your country having chosen you above others for taking
refuge. We have come here, 0 king, to your country seeking your
protection and we do hope that we shall not be dealt with unjustly."
When the Negus heard this he treated
the Muslims with honour and pledged his protection to them.
The next day the envoys of the Quraish hatched another plot
to convince the Negus. They said that the Prophet Sallallahu
Alaihi Wasallam and his followers blasphemed Jesus. The Negus
again asked Ja'far Radhi Allahu Anhu about this. Ja'far Radhi
Allahu Anhu replied by reciting the opening verses of Surah
Maryam. Negus wept until his beard was wet and the bishops wept
until their scrolls were wet with tears. The messengers of the
Quraish were forced to leave Abysinnia in shame. (1)
After a while the Quraish spread
a false rumour that they had all accepted Islam. The emigrants
thought it safe to return to Makkah. Only when they arrived
did they realise that this was another shrewd plot by their
enemies. They were again forced to flee for their lives. This
time eighty-three Muslims left for Abysinnia.