Ivan Nassar / Al Najieb
Despite the available information that we use to formulate our facts, academic knowledge, and religious principles, knowledge has its limits for human creation.
The Angels said concerning Allah’s wisdom: “Glory to Thee, of knowledge we have none, save what Thou hast taught us. In Truth, it is Thou Perfect in knowledge and wisdom.”(Holy Al-Qur’an, Surat Al-Baqarah, ayat 32).
Prophet Muhammed (PBUH – Peace and Blessing Upon Him) has given us a divine awareness into the language of prophecies. A hadith translation of Sahih Bukhari as narrated by Salim bin “Abdullah, states: My father said, I heard Allah’s Apostle stated, the period of your stay as compared to the previous nations is like the period equal to the time between the ‘Asr prayer and sunset.”
The people of the Torah were given the Torah, and they acted (upon it) till midday. Then, they were exhausted and were given one Qirat (of gold) each. And then, the people of the Gospel were given the Gospel, and they acted (upon it) till the ‘Asr prayer. Then, they were exhausted and were given one Qirat each. “And then, we were given the Qur’an, and we acted (upon it) till sunset, and we were given two Qirats each. On that, the people of both the Scriptures said, ‘O our Lord! You have given them two Qirats and given us one Qirat, though we have worked more than they.’ “Allah said, ‘Have I usurped some of your rights?’ They said, “No.’ Allah said: ‘That is My blessing I bestow upon whomsoever I wish.” (Sahih al-Bukhari, Book 9, Hadith 34)
This interpretation presents the favor of Allah, The Most High, to the people of the Torah. They had the lengthiest time to work and propagate the message. In the divine chronology of time, they worked to the time between Fajr to Zuhr.
The people of the Injil received the honor to propel the spirit of truth. They worked to the time between Zuhr until ‘Asr, and afterward, they became fatigued and abandoned their labor.
The Muslims took up the divine challenge, and the Prophet (PBUH) prophesied that the Muslims would work to the time between ‘Asr until sunset (Maghrib), up till the time of judgment, the conclusion of things when the sun declines on this material world.
The time of ‘Asr signifies the last stage of the day during the height of commercial enterprises and movement. The offering of the Asr prayer is the most challenging prayer to make of all the five prayers. This analogy is to the Ummah of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH), who will have the most demanding task and given the shortest time to work. This also emphasized the seriousness of the time that we are living in, considering the divine chronology of time.