By Hesham Hassaballa
I had no idea that this gathering about drawing the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) even existed. That is, until news of the shootings surfaced. Now, authorities have identified the gunmen, Elton Simpson and his roommate Nadir Soofi. These “holy warriors” were killed by police as soon as they opened fire as the event was ending.
What continues to boggle the mind about the criminals who undertake such actions to “defend the Prophet (pbuh)” is how brazenly they neglect the Qur’an. This is not the first – and most certainly will not be the last – time that the Prophet (pbuh) has been insulted. In fact, because of an act such as this shooting, it will guarantee that other such events mocking the Prophet (pbuh) will be held in the future.
But, again, what does the Qur’an say about facing the mockery of the Prophet (pbuh)? Plenty, actually:
“And, indeed, He has enjoined upon you in this divine writ that whenever you hear people deny the truth of God’s messages and mock at them, you shall avoid their company until they begin to talk of other things – or else, verily, you will become like them. Behold, together with those who deny the truth God will gather in hell the hypocrites.” (4:140)
“Now, whenever thou meet such as indulge in [blasphemous] talk about Our messages, turn thy back upon them until they begin to talk of other things and if Satan should ever cause thee to forget [thyself], remain not, after recollection, in the company of such evildoing folk.” (6:68)
Two revelations, revealed years apart, saying the same thing: walk away from those who mock the signs of God. Nowhere does it say that these people should be attacked, harmed, or killed.
People will mock the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), just like other Prophets were mocked before. The Qur’an says so, in fact, multiple times:
“Mocked were (many) apostles before thee; but their scoffers were hemmed in by the thing that they mocked.” (6:10)
“Mocked were (many) apostles before thee: but I granted respite to the unbelievers, and finally I punished them: Then how (terrible) was my requital!” (13:32)
“Mocked were (many) apostle before thee; But their scoffers were hemmed in by the thing that they mocked.” (21:41)
Again, God said that He took care of those who mocked His Messengers, and no where does it say attack and kill those that mock. This is a satanic delusion of some criminals who are Muslim and think they are doing “good.” They are not doing good, but a tremendous evil.
What’s more, the Qur’an comforted the Prophet (pbuh) with regards to the mockery he faced:
“And well do We know that thy bosom is constricted by the [blasphemous] things that they say.” (15:97)
And what does the next verse say to do? Kill them? Attack them? Absolutely not:
“But extol thou thy Sustainer’s limitless glory and praise Him, and be of those who prostrate themselves [before Him] in adoration, and worship thy Lord till death comes to thee.” (15:98-99)
The Qur’an is clear: leave those who mock and malign, and God will take care of them, just like He has in the past.
That is why it is quite clear that people such as Simpson and Soofi have absolutely no knowledge of Islam and the Qur’an. If they did, they would have known better not to engage in acts of criminality that will only do harm to Islam, the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), and the larger Muslim community, which will certainly face an unjust and unjustifiable backlash.
Criminals such as Simpson and Soofi, like the criminals behind the attach on Charlie Hebdo, do not represent Islam, and they do not defend the Prophet in the way he should be defended, no matter how much those who hate Islam may say so.
Thank God that Simpson and Soofi were stopped before they could commit worse crimes, and may God protect us all from criminal deviants such as these from ever striking again.