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The Prophet (SAWS) made du’a, “O’ Allah, give Islam strength and power through the most beloved of the two men to you” The two men were ‘Umar ibn Hisham (Abu Jahl) and ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab (RA). Allah (SWT) chose ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab (RA)

Here are some incidents that took place before he (RA) became a Muslim:

‘Umar (RA) was a heavy drinker in the times of Jahiliyyah and he used to drink with his “drinking friends.” So, one night ‘Umar (RA) didn’t find anyone to drink with and he though that since there’s nothing better to do, why not go and do tawaf around Ka’bah. He went out and he saw a man praying alone at the Ka’bah. ‘Umar (RA) went closer and saw that it was Prophet (SAWS) therefore, he decided to somehow disturb the Prophet (SAWS). Then ‘Umar (RA) hid under the cover of the Ka’bah and slowly he came to the spot from where he could hear the Prophet (SAWS) reciting the Qur’an. Whilst ‘Umar (RA) was listening to the recitation of the Prophet (SAWS) , he was impressed by the Qur’an and thought that this might be the word of poet. At that very moment, the Prophet (SAWS) reached the part:
وَمَا هُوَ بِقَوْلِ شَاعِر قَلِيلًا مَا تُؤْمِنُونَ ٍ
It is not the word of a poet, little is that you believe!
{Noble Qur’an 69:41}

‘Umar (RA) was amazed at this so he thought that this might be the word of a soothsayer and then he heard this:

وَلَا بِقَوْلِ كَاهِنٍ قَلِيلًا مَا تَذَكَّرُونَ
Nor is it the word of a soothsayer (or a foreteller), little is that you remember! {Noble Qur’an 69:42}

‘Umar (RA) was now really stunned at this and finally he thought then this might be the Word of Allah (SWT).

One day, ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab (RA) saw a Sahabiyyah who was on her way to Abyssinia. He (RA) said, “Are you leaving?” She (RA) replied, “Yes, because you have oppressed us and persecuted us! We are going to travel in the land of Allah, in order we can practice our religion freely.” He (RA) said, “May Allah be with you!” This statement was contrary to the nature of ‘Umar (RA). ‘Umar (RA) showing compassion to a Muslim was not possible. When Nu’aym bin ‘AbduLlah (RA) came back, he was with the Sahabiyyah (RA), she told him what happened. He said, “It appears that you are hoping for ‘Umar to be a Muslim.” She said, “Yes.” He said, “Let me tell you, the donkey of his father would become a Muslim before he does.”

‘AbduLlah ibn ‘Umar (RA) narrated, “One day, a handsome man walked in front of us so my father looked at his face and said, ‘If my intuition is right, this man was a fortune teller for his people’.’ So we called the man and ‘Umar (RA) said, ‘Tell me about yourself.’ The man said, ‘Yes, I was the fortune teller of my people.’ So ’Umar (RA) asked him, “Tell me about the strangest thing your Jinn has told you about.” He said, “My Jinn came to me and he mentioned some rhyming words speaking about coming of a Prophet.” ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab (RA) said, ‘Yes, that’s true. One day when a man was sacrificing an animal for idols, I heard a very loud voice and this voice was saying something similar that there was a Prophet coming and then immediately after that Muhammad claimed to be the Prophet.’ ”(‘Abdullah ibn ‘Umar {RA} said, “Rarely would the intuition of my father would go wrong”)”

One day the Mushrikin were discussing the issue of Prophet (SAWS). They said, “Who’d want to volunteer in killing him?” ‘Umar (RA) said, “I will!” They said, “Yes, you are the man for it.” So ‘Umar (RA) carried his sword in the middle of a very hot day in Makkah and he was walking down the streets to Dar al-Arqam and you could see evil in his eyes. One of the companions who was practising Islam in secret, saw ‘Umar ibn al-Khattab (RA) and he realised that there was something wrong. So, he (RA) told ‘Umar (RA), “Where are you going?” He (RA) said, “To this man who has disunited our people and has made fools out of us and who has cursed our gods, I am going to kill him.” The Companion (RA) told him (RA), “It seems

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