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Khalifa Ali bin Abu Talib - The Bani Qainuqa

Animosity of the Jews

The Holy Prophet followed with regard to the Jews the policy of 'live and let live'. He promulgated a charter of rights whereunder the Jews were guaranteed freedom to worship without any interference. It was undertaken that the two communities would live on terms of mutual friendship, in any attack on the Muslims, the Jews were to help the Muslims. When the Holy Prophet established a polity and the Muslims acquired strength, the Jews came to regard the growing strength of the Muslims as a menace to their influence. They accordingly launched a campaign of vilification against Islam. A Jewish lady Asma wrote pungent verses ridiculing and vilifying Islam and the Holy Prophet. She was warned by the Muslims to refrain from her nefarious activity, but when she persisted, a Muslim stabbed her to death. Abu Afaq another Jewish poet wrote venomous satires and lampoons ridiculing Islam. He met the same fate as Asma and was assassinated by a Muslim young man. The Jews perverted the verses of the Holy Quran and gave them ominous meanings. The Prophet enjoined the Muslims to spend in the way of Allah. The amounts thus were to be a loan against Allah who would repay it many times the original amount. Islam forbade the charging of interest. That adversely affected the interests of the Jews. Most of the Quraish emigrants who were traders in Makkah undertook trading activities in Madina as well. That broke the monopoly of the Jews in trade. Finhas a Jewish rabbi held out that the God of the Muslims was poor who asked of loan from the people, but the God of the Jews was rich Who needed no loan and who had made the Jews rich. He maintained that they did not need God, but God needed them. He observed that the dependence of God on the Jews was manifest from the fact that He had given interest to the Jews, but had denied it to the Muslims. The rabbi came across Abu Bakr who took him to task for his sacrilege. Abu Bakr slapped the rabbi on the face and said that were it not for the treaty between the Muslims and the Jews, he would have cut off the head of Finhas, the enemy of Allah. During this period many verses of the Holy Quran were revealed exposing the perfidy of the Jews. It was pointed out that the Jews had gone on rejecting the signs of God, and slaying His messengers, and they were transgressors.

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