بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم
In the Name of Allah most Gracious most Merciful
سُبْحَانَ الَّذِي أَسْرَىٰ بِعَبْدِهِ لَيْلًا مِّنَ الْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ إِلَى الْمَسْجِدِ الْأَقْصَى الَّذِي بَارَكْنَا حَوْلَهُ
Exalted is He who took His Servant by night from al-Masjid al-Haram to al-Masjid al- Aqsa, whose surroundings We have blessed
The Blessed and Holy land of Palestine, a very ancient land, has a rich history of humanity. A history thousands if not millions of years before the birth of The Last Prophet of this world ﷺ. A history before Bani Isra’eel (the children of Isra’eel, also known as the Jews) entered the land. Among the peoples who lived on this land before the Jews were the people of Canaan, and later on the Amorite, and many other peoples.
After the downfall of the Bani Isra’eel, the land hosted the Persians and the Romans, and the defeat that came to them and their return:
الم * غُلِبَتِ الرُّومُ * فِي أَدْنَى الْأَرْضِ وَهُم مِّن بَعْدِ غَلَبِهِمْ سَيَغْلِبُونَ * فِي بِضْعِ سِنِينَ ۗ لِلَّهِ الْأَمْرُ مِن قَبْلُ وَمِن بَعْدُ ۚوَيَوْمَئِذٍ يَفْرَحُ الْمُؤْمِنُونَ
The Byzantines have been defeated * In the nearest land. But they, after their defeat, will overcome * Within three to nine years. To Allah belongs the command before and after. And that day the believers will rejoice
At the center of this land, Masjid al-Aqsa was the Muslims’ first Qibla. And to this land the Prophet ﷺ came to during the night Journey. This land has been ruled by almost all the khilafat, from the righteous Khulafa’, to the Abbasid, to the Umayyad, to the Salajaqa, to the Ottomans.
Palestine has, is, and will always be seen important to many nations on this earth. In the past, among those that desired it were the Crusaders and the Mongols, and currently the Israelis.
Like the Jews, this land is important and holy and part of Muslim creed. It is in Islam as important as Makkah and Madinah. As is known, Masjidul Aqsa in the Quds was our first Qibla before it was changed to the Ka’bah, meaning that even in Makkah when they were next to the Ka’bah they still had to face Al Aqsa, and this was to implant the realization of its greatness within the Muslims (and of course there are other reasons).
When the Prophet ﷺ went on the night journey, Allah did not take him from Makkah where the Ka’bah is, but from Masjidul Aqsa where what happened there is known then from there He took the Prophet ﷺ up. There are a number of wisdom and reasons behind this, among them was to show the oneness of what all the messengers came with, as well as to show its greatness and the land around it and raise its status in the hearts of the Muslims.
After the Qibla was changed, the status of Masjidul Aqsa did not change or become lowered, but the Prophet ﷺ tied it to Makkah and Madinah when he ﷺ said:
لاَ تَشُدُّوا الرِّحَالَ إِلاَّ إِلَى ثَلاَثَةِ مَسَاجِدَ مَسْجِدِي هَذَا وَالْمَسْجِدِ الْحَرَامِ وَالْمَسْجِدِ الأَقْصَى
Do not set out on a journey (for religious devotion) but for the three mosques-for this mosque of mine (at Medina) the Sacred Mosque (at Mecca), and the Mosque al-Aqsa (Bait al-Maqdis)
Many lessons can be learned by studying the history of this land which can be beneficial to Muslims today. History has been called the mirror of nations, it reflects its past and defines its future, and a nation which does not have a history does not exist, as a nation lives with the existence of history and dies without it (Source).
So what is going to be done from the next upcoming blog-post until the end of the series posts about history of Palestine, is tell the history from the time Bani Isra’eel entered Palestine until their political re-entry in 1948 and establishing of what is known today as the state of Israel. Of course to entirely recall the history of this land from one point to another requires the writing of an entire book, so what will be done is the posts will suffice with a moderate amount of details Insha’Allah.
سبحان رب العزة عما يصفون، و سلام على المرسلين و الحمد لله رب العالمين