There were men around the Prophet (peace be upon him), and what great men they were! Everyone of them has a special merit besides other good qualities. Every one of them is obedient to the Prophet (peace be upon him). When you talk about them, you recall the description of the Prophet (peace be upon him): "If one of you had spent as much gold as the mountain of Uhud, he would not have reached the status of one of them or even half of it." So, may Allah be pleased with them all.
Our speech today is about a simple profile for one of the Prophet's Companions. He is a man of special missions. He never said “No” to a mission that was assigned to him by the Prophet (peace be upon him) and he always fulfilled his missions. The Prophet (peace be upon him) gave him a stick to be a manifest sign between him and the Prophet until the Day of Recompense, as was reported in "Al Rawd Al Anif" (vol. 4 / p. 401).
The Prophet gave a stick to Ibn Unays:
Then he stood up and let me in, gave me a stick, and said: "Keep this stick with you, O `Abdullah ibn Unays."
He said: I took it and came out to the people. When they saw it, they asked: What is this stick? I said: The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) gave it to me and commanded me to keep it. They said: Would go back to the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) and ask him why is that? He said: So, I came back to the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) and I said: O Messenger Allah, why did not you give me this stick? He said: It will be a sign between me and you on the Day of Recompense; the least people are those who lean to good deeds on that day."
He said: Therefore, `Abdullah ibn Unays correlated it with his sword and it remained with him until he died then commanded the people to bury it with him in his shroud and they were buried together. He was the man of special missions; he reported from the Prophet (peace be upon him) twenty four Hadiths as was reported in "Jawam` Al Sirah" (vol. 1 / p. 282).
As for the story of killing Sufyan ibn Khalid ibn Nubayh, I preferred to report it as was mentioned in "Subul Al Huda Wal Rashad" (vol. 6 / p. 36), but I recall that the distance that separated him from his goal (i.e., Sufyan ibn Khalid ibn Nubayh) was not short. It was the same distance which `Uthman ibn Talhah Al `Abdary walked to accompany the mother of the believers Um Salamah to her husband Abu Salamah in Al Madinah (Medina), the story which I mentioned in a special article.
Walking days and days by himself is something to be recorded to `Abdullah ibn Unays (may Allah be pleased with him) and here is the whole story:
`Abdullah ibn Unays got out from the Medina on Monday, 5 Al Muharram (the first month in the Islamic calendar) in the 3rd year AH.
Muhammad ibn `Umar said: It was reported to the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) that Sufyan ibn Khalid ibn Nubayh Al Hadhly Al Luhyany, who used to live in `Uranah with a group of his people, wanted to gather people and march to the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) and people came to him from all sides.
`Abdullah ibn Unays (may Allah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) called me and said: "It was reported to me that Sufyan ibn Khalid ibn Nubayh was gathering the people to fight me, and he is in Nakhlah or `Uranah, so go and kill him."
I said: O Messenger Allah, describe him to me so as to know him. He said: "The sign by which you shall know him is: when you see him, you fear him, flee of him, finds a shiver in your body, and you recall Satan."
`Abdullah said: I used not to fear men. I said: O Messenger Allah, I have never fled from anything. He said: "Yes, the sign between you and him is to find a shiver in your body when you see him."
He said: I sought the permission of the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) to say something, and he replied: "Say whatever you want."
He said: I am from the tribe of Khuza`ah. So, I took my sword and did not say anything else. I got out to lean to Khuza`ah until I was in the valley of `Uranah, when I saw him walking followed by Abyssinians.
When I saw him, I feared him and knew him by the description which the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) gave me. I said: Allah and Messenger have told the truth. It was the time of `Asr when I saw him, so I offered Salah gesturing with my head. When I drew near him, he said: Who is the man? I said: A man from Khuza`ah. I heard that you gather an army to fight Muhammad, so I came to join you. He said: Yes, I am going to gather an army to fight him (Prophet Muhammad). So, I walked with him and talked. He liked my speech, then I said to him: What Muhammad has done by bringing that new religion was horrible because he separated from the fathers and denounced their acts of worship. He said: Someone like me will be an equal to him. He was leaning on a stick striking it in the ground as he walked until he reached his tent and his followers separated from him to nearby houses that surrounded him.
He said: Come near, O brother from Khuza`ah. So, I approached him.
He said: Sit. So, I sat with him until people were few and he went to sleep, I killed him. In most narrations: He said: "So, I walked with him until I became able to kill him, I held my sword, killed him, and took off his head, then I mounted a mountain then entered a cave. Horsemen and soldiers started to go here and there searching for me while I was hiding in the cave after I had put the spider net on the cave mount.
A man came with his vessel, carrying his shoes in his hand and I was afraid. Then he put his vessel and shoes, and sat urinating near the cave mount, then he said to his fellows: There is no one in the cave. So, they returned. I got out, drank from the vessel, and wore the shoes."
I used to walk at night and take a rest in daytime until I reached the Medina. I found the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) in the masjid. When he saw me, he said: "May your face be brightened!"
I said: "May Allah brighten your face, O Messenger of Allah!" I put the head of the infidel before him and told him my story. Thereupon, he gave me the stick and said: "Lean on it because the people who lean on their good deeds are few in Paradise."
So, the stick remained with `Abdullah ibn Unays until he died and he commended his family to bury the stick with him in the shroud, and so they did. I need to mention that great and brave Companion was a knight and a poet.
It was reported in "Al Isti`ab Fy Ma`rifay Al Ashab" (vol. 1 / p. 261) about that great Companion of difficult and dangerous missions:
Al Kalby said: `Abdullah ibn Unays, the Companion of the Prophet (peace be upon him), was `Abdullah ibn Unays ibn As`ad ibn Haram ibn Habib ibn Malik ibn Ghanm ibn Ka`b Ibn Taym ibn Nafathah ibn Iyas ibn Yarbu` ibn Al Bark ibn Wabarah, the brother of Kalb ibn Wabarah, and Al Bark ibn Wabarah entered in Juhaynah.
Ibn Al Kalby said: `Abdullah ibn Unays was one of the emigrants, one of the Supporters, and one of those who witnessed the pledge of Al `Aqabah, the Battle of ` Uhud and the following battles, and was nicknamed by Abu Yahya.
Abu Yahya had other missions that were mentioned in the books of biography that were not less than the mission assigned to him by the Prophet (peace be upon him) which I may mention in separate article.
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