Allah has undoubtedly chosen Prophets and Messengers of God from among the sons of Adam (A.S) through the passage of time, as mentioned in Surah Ali ‘Imran. The calm and patient Nuh (A.S) was the first Prophet after Adam (A.S). Allah sent him as a beacon of hope to his people who had fallen prey to idol worship. We see this in the Story of Noah.
Amongst Adam’s descendants, it was the forefathers of Nuh’s people who kept straying from Allah’s path. Some righteous men among them would remind them of their duty to Allah SWT alone, with success. When these righteous men passed away, one after another, Shaytan came to the people and whispered evil ideas into their ears. They took heed of his suggestion that the correct way to honor the deceased righteous men, would be to make their statues and place them where they used to deliver sermons.
As stated in Sahih Al-Bukhari, after that group of people died, those who came after them were encouraged by Shaytan to worship the statues, which they did willingly. The names of those righteous men were assigned to different idols for worship. This was how the seed of idol worship was planted into the hearts of men of weak faith. It was in this era that the story of Prophet Nuh and the Great Flood begins.
Interesting Facts about Prophet Nuh A.S.
Indeed, the most unique aspect of Nuh A.S.’s life was that he preached to his people for a good 950 years, as outlined in Surah Al-‘Ankabut. Accordingly, it is said that he lived for over a thousand years.
He is thought to have been the first Prophet after Adam A.S. Reason being that humanity had remained steadfast on the path of monotheism until the people of Nuh planted the seed of idol worship. Allah tells us in Surah Hud that he sent him as a warner to his disbelieving people. He warned them of Allah’s Wrath and a painful doom.
The kind, patient, and gentle soul worked on his stubborn people day and night. He tried to appeal to their reason in secret and in public. Hushed or loudly as the situation demanded. He approached the rich and powerful disbelievers of his nation countless times, despite their insults and threats. The nine hundred and fifty long years of his struggle were a test of his unwavering grit and perseverance.
In Sahih Al-Bukhari, it is mentioned that the people will approach Noah on the Last Day. They will tell him he is the first of the Messengers on Earth and called a grateful servant by Allah.
Noah’s Call to His Disbelieving People
Nuh was a Prophet and the first of Allah’s Messengers sent to mankind. Every Messenger who brings God’s ordainment or a holy book is a Prophet, but not all Prophets are Messengers. Nuh AS also warned his people of a torment that awaited them if they did not abandon idol-worship.
All his warnings fell on deaf ears, and only a handful of weak and poor men took heed of them. He left no stone unturned in trying to help his people see reason, but they belittled and rejected all his efforts. In Surah Hud, we see that they even asked Nuh to desert the weak and poor people who had listened to him if he wanted them to join him.
He called them earnestly in public and in private, but this made them even more rebellious. They questioned what qualified him to be a Prophet of God, for they saw nothing exceptional in him. They also mocked the fact that he had only won the support and company of the meek and poverty-stricken amongst them.
In Surah Nuh, Allah shows us how Noah called his people to the straight path and how defiant they were, despite his persistence. They would even block their ears with their fingers. Ultimately a war of words began between the parties of truth and falsehood. The ingrates responded to Nuh A.S’s sincere advice by saying that they perceive him as being in the wrong, as we learn in Surah Al-A’raf.
Story of Noah’s ark – Noah’s Heartfelt Dua and Allah’s Command to Build an Ark
Noahh had come to realize that his quarrelsome people would only go on to spread corruption in the land. The thought of their offspring following in their crooked ways troubled him greatly. Such ugly possibilities could not have been left unattended. And it was for this reason that Noah pleaded with his Lord, as we see in Surah Nuh, to eradicate disbelievers from the earth to safeguard the faith of the believers.
Allah heard the noble supplicant’s cry and granted it. In Surah Hud, Allah tells us that he commanded Noah to build an ark under His close supervision. The disbelievers were undoubtedly doomed to destruction and despair, and their fate was sealed. The story of Noah in the Quran provides vivid details.
When Nuh began building the ark on a hilltop, the disbelievers were amused and mocked him. They called him a madman and burst into fits of laughter, utterly oblivious to Allah’s plans.
Once Nuh completed the ship, he waited patiently for Allah’s next command. When the command came, he boarded the ark with his family, the believers, and one male and female (pair) of every animal, insect, and bird. This baffled the idol-worshippers even more as they could not make sense of what they were witnessing.
Noah’s eldest son and one of his wives, both of whom were disbelievers, stayed behind. The son claimed that he would find refuge on a mountain top. It is estimated that the approximately 80 people boarded the ark that fateful day. As Allah informs us in Surah Hud, the ark kept them safe from waves that were similar to mountains.
Allah’s Punishment Descends
Soon after, and by Allah’s leave alone, water began to gush out of every crack in the earth, and the heavens exploded in rain showers such as had never been witnessed before.
The waves that resulted were taller than mountains, so Nuh’s son stood no chance. In Surah Hud, we see that upon seeing his son drowning, he pleaded with Allah for his son who was a part of his family. Allah reprimanded him, saying that a disbeliever cannot be considered a member of his family. Nuh asked to be forgiven for questioning Allah’s decisions, and Allah forgave him, as He forgives every sincere repenter.
Once every single disbeliever was removed from the face of the earth, Allah SWT commanded the earth and sky to normalize. Nuh A.S disembarked the ship with his family and companions. He set free all the animals, birds, and insects to roam the earth as they pleased. At that moment, not a single disbelieving soul remained on the ground. This is also the point at which the story of Noah (Prophet Nuh) and the great flood reaches its climax in the Noble Quran. The story of Nuh teaches us a number of lessons about the importance of obeying Allah and His Prophet(s).
The story of Nuh (A.S.) contains many lessons that Muslims can learn about and benefit from. Hence, we should learn about Nuh (A.S.), both in terms of reading the Quran as well as utilizing other resources. The story of Nuh teaches us all about the importance of obeying Allah and His Messenger.