Jerusalem, Elia or Al-Quds all are the names of a blessed and holy city. It’s the city of most Prophets: Abraham, Lot, Ishmael, Issac, Jacob, Joseph, David, Solomon, Zechariah, John and Jesus. Furthermore, it is the ascension place of Prophet Muhammad from the earth to the heavens at the night of Isra and Miraj, where he prayed with all Prophets at the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
What is the story of Jerusalem? And Why all these struggles over it? That is what will we know in this article.
Bait Al-Maqdis (Al Aqsa Mosque) – The Secret Of Jerusalem:
The story of Jerusalem starts from the building of Bait Al-Maqdis, Al Aqsa mosque, the second mosque built on the earth after Kaaba. Bait Al-Maqdis was built so God alone would be worshiped and to become a center for spreading the Prophets’ message for people all over the world.
Abu Dharr said that he asked God’s Messenger Muhammad which mosque was set up first on the earth and was told that it was the sacred mosque (Kaaba). He asked which came next and was told that it was the Aqsa mosque. He asked how long a space of time separated their building, and the Prophet told him it was forty years, adding, then the earth is a mosque for you, so pray wherever you are at the time of prayer.” [Bukhari and Muslim] (1)
Who Firstly Built Bait Al Maqdis?
When Adam built the Kaaba, God commanded him to walk to Bait Al-Maqdis and to build it, so he built it and practiced rituals in it. (2)
Then, years after, the Prophet Abraham renewed the building of Kaaba and Bait Al-Maqdis, then Prophet Jacob and then Solomon. (3)
It was narrated from ‘Abdullah bin ‘Amr that the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) said:
When Sulaiman bin Dawud finished building Bait Al-Maqdis, he asked Allah for three things: Judgement that was in harmony with His judgement, and he was given that. And he asked Allah for a dominion that no one after him would have, and he was given that. And when he finished building the Masjid (mosque) he asked Allah, the Mighty and Sublime, that no one should come to it, intending only to pray there, but he would emerge free of sin as the day his mother bore him.” [hadith] (4)
Bait Al-Maqdis remained as Solomon built it until its invasion in the year 586 BC when the Babylonian king destroyed the city, demolishing it and demolishing the mosque, taking what was in its roofs and walls of gold, silver, pearls, sapphires and other jewels, and carried it to the house of his kingdom from the land of Iraq. From the foregoing, it becomes clear that what Solomon, peace be upon him, did in Bait Al-Maqdis is not building a temple, but rather a renovation of the blessed Al-Aqsa Mosque, as Abraham, peace be upon him, did in the Kaaba where he renewed the building of Adam peace be upon him. We thus see that Al-Aqsa Mosque existed before Solomon, Moses, Jacob and Abraham, peace be upon them.
The mosque was destroyed many times but rebuilt also many times after Prophet Solomon. The final shape of it now was built in the Umayyad covenant. However, it was renovated several times after.
Jerusalem And Jews
A. What Is The Origin Of Jews – Children Of Israel?
Israa’eel (Israel) – Ya’qoob ibn Is-haaq ibn Ibraaheem al-Khaleel (Jacob son of Isaac son of Abraham the Close Friend of Allah – peace be upon them all) – grew up and lived in the land of the Canaanites (Palestine) and had twelve sons who are the origin of the Israelite tribes.
Then comes the famous story of Joseph (Yoosuf – peace be upon him) with his brothers and their father Jacob (Ya’qoob – peace be upon him), whose sons and he moved to live in the land of Egypt. They were honored and respected under the auspices of Joseph (peace be upon him) there.
Children of Israel Situation in Egypt Changed
After the deaths of Jacob and Joseph (peace be upon them), with the passage of time and the succession of kings, the situation of the Children of Israel in Egypt changed from one of honor and respect to one of humiliation and ignominy, because the Pharaoh of Egypt persecuted and enslaved the Israelites.
Then Allah, may He be blessed and exalted, sent Moses and Aaron (peace be upon them), the two sons of Amram son of Kohath son of Levi son of Jacob (‘Imraan ibn Qahaat ibn Laawi ibn Ya’qoob – peace be upon him) to Pharaoh and his people, supported with miracles, to call them to believe in Allah alone, and to stop persecuting the Children of Israel. However, Pharaoh and his people rejected the message, disobeyed Allah and disbelieved in Him and his signs. Thus Allah commanded His Messenger Moses to depart from Egypt with the Children of Israel. Pharaoh pursued them with his troops, and Allah drowned them in the sea, but He delivered Moses and his people into the land of Sinai.
The Start of Children of Israel Movement & Their Reaction to Allah’s Instruction
When Moses (peace be upon him) went to meet his Lord and receive the Torah on Mount Sinai, they thought that he was taking too long to return to them. So they reverted to what they were familiar with of idolatry in Egypt, and they took the calf for worship.
Allah, may He be glorified and exalted, instructed them to enter the holy land (Bayt al-Maqdis – Jerusalem – and the land of goodness) and promised them victory. Prophet Moses asked his people to do that, but they refused. Allah, may He be glorified and exalted, punished them. Allah decreed that they should wander in the wilderness of Sinai for forty years, constantly traveling and not finding their way out of it, until that disobedient, careless generation, whom Moses had encountered indescribable offense and disobedience from, died.
How & When They Entered Jerusalem?
Aaron died, followed by Moses (peace be upon them both) in the wilderness, and Allah brought forth among the Children of Israel Yoosha’ ibn Noon (Joshua son of Nun), the servant of Moses (peace be upon them both), as a Prophet and successor to Moses (peace be upon him). When their sojourn in the wilderness ended, Joshua (peace be upon him) brought the Children of Israel out to Bayt al-Maqdis (Jerusalem), which they besieged and Allah granted them the conquest thereof. After they entered the holy land, Joshua (peace be upon him) began to complete the conquest thereof, and he divided the conquered lands among the twelve Israelite tribes.
Talut And David
After years, Cannanian’s tyrants exiled all children of Israel from the holy land Jerusalem. In that period, the children of Israel killed all the Prophets God sent to them, so they could not fight the Cannanians until God chose a king for them called Talut (Saul).
Talut (Saul) promised his soldiers that whoever was to kill Goliath, would marry his daughter and share with him the kingship.
Prophet David, one of Saul’s soldiers, entered with him the holy land and became its king after he killed the Cannanian’s tyrant king, Goliath. Allah gave him kingship and prophethood and taught him from that which Allah willed, and he married the daughter of Talut.
Prophet David was a pious Prophet and a just judge. He used to fast one day and break his fast another. Prophet David, peace be upon him, used to worship day and night, getting up to pray during the night and fasting during the day. He spent a large part of his day in the worship of God Almighty. God taught him the language of birds, and gave him iron, which was in his hands like dough, given he had the ability to twist it with his bare hands without the need for fire or a hammer. He used to make shields for his soldiers to protect them from enemies and to ward off the danger of war and battles.
He died at the age of 100, leaving behind a legacy as a person loved because he was a just man, a humble king and a pious Prophet.
The Era of Prophet Solomon
Solomon, also a very pious and humble king and Prophet, inherited David peace be upon them. Like his father, he had been taught the language of birds, and he had been given from all things.
Allah Almighty granted him with knowledge, wisdom, Prophethood, the ability to judge between people in the most correct manner, kingdom, lots and lots of wealth, the ability to communicate with the birds, animals and many other creatures, the power to control the wind, and, above that, Allah Almighty gave him the power to control all of the Jinn.
His Rebuild for Al Aqsa
Before Prophet Solomon died, he rebuilt the mosque of Al-Aqsa, then he devoted himself to worshiping in Jerusalem, leaning on his staff, until he died. He was in this state, and the demons did not know the news of Solomon’s death until when a demon entered through a window in Jerusalem and looked at Solomon – peace be upon him – and found him to have fallen dead after the termites had eaten his stick. Almighty said,
When We decreed Solomon’s death, nothing indicated to the ˹subjected˺ jinn that he was dead except the termites eating away his staff. So when he collapsed, the jinn realized that if they had ˹really˺ known the unseen, they would not have remained in ˹such˺ humiliating servitude.” [Quran 34:14] (5)
After the death of Solomon peace be upon him, his children differed, so his kingdom was divided into two kingdoms, with each kingdom having one of Solomon’s sons.
- The first is in the north and is called the “Kingdom of Israel”, or “The Kingdom of Samaria”, and its capital is Nablus.
- The second in the south is the “Kingdom of Judah”, and its capital is Jerusalem.
The northern kingdom “Israel” was destroyed and ended in 721 B.C. About 150 years later, the second kingdom, the “Kingdom of Judah”, was destroyed.
Destruction of Jerusalem
In 586 B.C. Jerusalem was destroyed and the Jews were captive to Babylon in what is known as Babylonian captivity or Babylonian exile. Many years after that, the Jews were allowed back to Jerusalem.
Then in (132–135 CE) was the Bar Kokhba Revolt, also called Second Jewish Revolt, which was a Jewish rebellion against Roman rule. However, it was crushed when they were defeated by the emperor Hadrian and were totally banned from entering Jerusalem. Hardrian wiped the old city from history and built a new city called The City of Elia. This later changed with the Muslim conquest, namely the second caliph Umar Ibn Al Khattab. Umar changed the city’s name to Jerusalem or Al Quds.
Umar Pact to the People of Elia (Jerusalem)
And this is The Pact of Umar to the people of Elia (Jerusalem):
“In the name of Allah, the merciful Benefactor,
This is the assurance granted to the inhabitants of Elia by the servant of God, Umar; the commander of the Believers. He grants them safety for their persons, their goods, churches, crosses – be they in good or bad condition – and their worship in general.
- Their churches shall neither be turned over to dwellings nor pulled down; they and their dependents shall not be put to any prejudice and thus shall fare with their crosses and goods.
- No constraint shall be imposed upon them in matters of religion and no one among them shall be harmed. No Jew shall be authorized to live in Aelia with them.
- The inhabitants of Aelia must pay the jizya in the same way as the inhabitants of other towns. It is a must for them to expel from their cities the Romans (Byzantines) and the outlaws. The expelled shall be granted safe conduct till they reach a place of safety.
- Those who would stay shall be authorized to, on condition that they pay the same jizya as the inhabitants of Aelia.
- Those of the inhabitants of Aelia who wish to leave with the Romans, to carry away their goods, abandon their churches and Crosses, shall likewise have their own safe conduct for themselves and for their Crosses, till they reach their place of safety.
- Rural dwellers who were already in the town before the murder of such a one, may stay and pay the jizya by the same title as the people of Aelia. Or if they prefer, they may leave with the Romans or return to their families. Nothing shall be exacted from them.
Witnesses: Khaled Ibn Al-Walid, ‘Amr Ibn Al-As, ‘Abdar-Rahman Ibn ‘Awf, Muawiya Ibn Abi Sufyan, who wrote these words, here, in the year 15 A.H. (638 CE).
The Jews were displaced and scattered around the world till they came back in the twentieth century. The Jews claim they are waiting for the Anti-Christ as theirs. They say that they must build what is called “The Solomon Temple” first.
What Is The Story Of Solomon Temple At Jerusalem?
The Zionists claim that God used to walk with them in a tent because He needed a house to settle in. Thus, Prophet David — as they claim — wanted to build a house for God, out of David’s fornication. God ordered that David’s son, Soloman, build it. However, all of that is not true:
- Firstly, sanctifying the Temple is an ancient pagan belief that existed in the ancient pagan states of Iraq, Syria and Egypt. It’s believed that the gods reside in the heavens but if they wished to descend to Earth, their stay would only be in large houses [the Temple].
- Secondly, how would God choose a prophet from the people of a major sin and injustice, as they described Prophet David? That is a false creed as God chose Prophets who would set a good example for their nation.
- Thirdly, Prophet Solomon rebuilt Al-Aqsa mosque before his death and did not build a temple for himself as the Zionists claimed.
What’s The Story of Ain Dara Temple?
Additionally, historically there is no evidence that a temple was built in the place of Al Aqsa mosque; the nearest description for what the Zionists called the Solomon temple was found in a place in northern Syria known as ‘Ain Dara’. The accounts of the Phoenician ’Ain Dara temple and the temple described in the Bible are exactly similar. (**)
But this temple was built in1300 B.C. and remained in use for more than 550 years, until 740 B.C. Prophet Solomon died around 990 B.C. This shows that this temple was built before Prophet Solomon. Also, it’s evidence that what Solomon built before his death was the mosque of Al-Aqsa for worshiping God alone. Al Aqsa was neither a temple for God to settle in as the story that Zionists claim, nor what is found in the holy book written after Prophet Solomon in the period when Babylonians exiled them from Jerusalem.
Given that, the best explanation for the Solomon temple is that it is a fabricated story made up by the Jews exiled in that period to encourage future generations to return to Jerusalem again to build the temple on the premise of the holy Aqsa.
The Story Of Jerusalem In Islam
Glory be to the One Who took His servant ˹Muḥammad˺ by night from the Sacred Mosque to the Farthest Mosque whose surroundings We have blessed, so that We may show him some of Our signs. Indeed, He alone is the All-Hearing, All-Seeing.” [Quran 17:1] (6)
Jerusalem is the land of the Prophets of God. It is the land of Abraham, Isaac, Moses and Jesus. God was forging a link between his Holy House in Mecca and Al-Aqsa mosque in Jerusalem. He was also linking the so-called cradle of religion, the Holy Land around Jerusalem, with the land of Arabia, the birthplace of the religion designated by the Creator, for all of humanity – Islam.
God established Al-Aqsa as one of the three Holy Mosques in Islam: the Holy mosque (Kaaba) in Mecca, the Prophet Muhammad’s mosque, which was established in Medina at the beginning of the final message of Islam, and this mosque in the blessed neighborhood of Jerusalem. It is only to these three mosques that Muslims can travel for the purpose of worship.
In general, all prophets & messengers of God brought the same message:
Worship only God, and stop worshiping human beings, their ideas or worshiping any other creature. There is One God, One Message across all ages. All Prophets & Messengers of God were Muslims. So, those who follow All God’s Prophets & worship God with His last message revealed at their time, are Muslims.
Merits of Al Aqsa for The Muslims
One prayer in Al-Aqsa mosque is worth 500 prayers elsewhere, excluding the Prophet’s mosque where one prayer is the equivalent of 1,000 prayers and the Holy mosque in Mecca where one prayer contains the reward of 100,000 prayers. God emphasized the significance and sacredness of Al-Aqsa mosque, and for this reason it plays an important role in a Muslim’s life. Therefore, it is guarded and protected zealously.
Al-Aqsa mosque was the first qiblah (the direction in which a Muslim turns to pray) in Islam, but this direction was later changed to the Holy mosque (Kaaba) in Mecca.
What’s The Night Journey & Ascension?
The Night Journey and Ascension took place late in the Meccan period, while the qiblah changed to Mecca around 15 months after the Prophet’s migration to Medina. From this, we can infer that the Muslims faced Al-Aqsa mosque when praying for approximately three years before God changed the direction to Mecca. This by no means diminished the significance of Jerusalem or Al-Aqsa mosque. It merely represented another step in the establishment of the message for all of humanity. The Holy Mosque (Kaaba) in Mecca was fixed as the central point in Islam.
It was from the Holy city of Jerusalem, in the sacred precincts of Al-Aqsa mosque that Prophet Muhammad commenced the next stage of his miraculous Night Journey. Prophet Muhammad ascended to the lowest heaven from a rock. This rock can be found inside the Dome of the Rock, the most famous symbol of Jerusalem. It should not be confused with the actual mosque building, which is on the other side of the Al-Aqsa compound.
The entire precinct is the mosque, but many separate buildings exist there. It is important to remember that although the Dome of the Rock is inside the mosque compound, it is not Al-Aqsa mosque. From this rock, which is now covered by the familiar golden dome, Prophet Muhammad ascended to the lowest heaven in the company of Angel Gabriel at The Night Journey and Ascension.
Furthermore, the wall, which is located in the southern part of the western wall of The Holy Aqsa Campus, and in front of the Muslim neighborhood of Al-Mughrabi, which was demolished by the Zionist authorities who forcibly expelled its residents, is an integral part of Al-Aqsa Mosque. Al-Buraq Wall was named that because the Prophet Muhammad tied his animal, Al-Buraq, the beast which the Prophet rode on The Night Journey and Ascension, to it.
The claimed “The Wailing Wall” is of falsehood. Indeed, the authentic story is that “the Western Wall is a Jewish-Zionist claim that was launched against the Al-Buraq Wall with a desire of deception. Its promotion began after the issuance of the Balfour Declaration in 1917 to establish a national home for the Jews in Palestine, where it took The Jews, when visiting the Al-Buraq Wall, to perform their rituals in front of it, weeping and wailing over the destruction of their alleged temple”. Regardless, history, geography, international laws and norms, and Islamic and Arab rights, refuse for it to be anything but the Al-Buraq Wall.
Who Has The Right to Keep Jerusalem?
Allah will grant His righteous worshippers the holy land of Jerusalem. But when you are righteous, God is with you, and you will eventually win. This is exactly what Prophet Moses advised the Jews to do but they, as usual, did not.
Moses reassured his people, seek Allah’s help and be patient. Indeed, the earth belongs to Allah ˹alone˺. He grants it to whoever He chooses of His servants. The ultimate outcome belongs ˹only˺ to the righteous.” [Quran 7:128] (7)
To conclude, Islam is the religion of all Prophet’s as it is the submission to only One True God. All land is for Allah and He decrees that the righteous servants shall inherit the land. The victory will be for those who follow the true religion and believe in all the Messengers and Prophets of God.
Don’t you agree with me that:
– The ultimate truth is that we are created. So, we should be loving, glorifying & grateful to our Creator only.
– As He Created us, we should worship Him in the same exact way He ordered us to, according to His final message to all mankind.
Make sense, right?
(2) Ibn Hisham in His Book “El Tegan”
(3) Ibn Kather in His Book “The beginning and the End”