Ancient Prophets for a Modern World, Jesus (P):Mary in the Furnace of Trials (Part 6)
Soon after the incident, Mary felt that she was pregnant and withdrew to a far off place away from people where she could be alone with her child. While she was away, the term prior to birth was completed.
“The pains of childbirth drove her to the trunk of a date palm.”
Mary was alone in the wilderness with no relatives or midwives around her, nor yet any food or water. She said to herself,
“Would that I had died before this and had been forgotten and out of sight.”
The anxiety of what was to follow this most unusual of births on the one hand, and the pains of labour on the other, overwhelmed her.
At the threshold of her trial, divine Mercy showered upon her. Suddenly, she heard a voice cry unto her from beneath her saying,
“Grieve you not! Your Lord has provided a water stream under you.”
The heavenly voice also asked her to look at the dried tree above her how it has turned into a fruit bearing date palm. The voice continued,
“And shake the trunk of the date palm towards you, it will let fall fresh ripe dates upon you. So eat and drink and be happy.”
As with regard to the social consequences of her childbirth the voice said that she did not need to talk rather that her child will defend himself.
“If you see any human being say (motion), verily I have vowed a fast unto the Most Gracious so I shall not speak to any human being on this day.” [19:23-26]
On seeing this beautiful child, foretold and gifted by the Almighty, Mary was pleased that she had become the mother of a Messenger of God. However, at the same time she was worried about the reaction of her people. "Who will believe me that no man has touched me?" thought this most virtuous of women. "How can I explain this to the Rabbis of the temple and even Zachariah and his wife? I have been, all my life known as the most chaste and modest lady. What if people accuse me of being unchaste?" Mary whispered to herself.
A TALKING NEW BORN
Mary wrapped him in swaddling clothes and finally returned to her people. Upon her arrival people were stunned to see her with an infant. Those who knew about her chastity and modesty were struck with awe and others who were jealous of her began to sneer. They said,
“O Mary, indeed you have brought a strange thing.”
It was customary among the Jews that when they wanted to praise the virtues of a person they would refer to them as the brother/sister of Aaron, therefore they addressed Mary,
“O sister of Aaron! Your father was not a man who used to commit adultery, nor was your mother an unchaste woman!”
Accusations and questions were thrown at her from all directions. She quietly pointed to her baby, meaning that the infant would explain himself. People were all the more outraged and assumed that she was mocking them, thus, with contempt they questioned, “How can we talk to one who is a child in the crib?” To everyone`s amazement the infant began to speak. He said,
“Verily, I am a slave of Allah. He has given me the Scripture and made me a Prophet. And He has made me blessed wheresoever I be, and has enjoined on me prayer and charity as long as I live. And dutiful to my mother and made me not arrogant, unblessed. And peace be upon me the day I was born, and the day I die, and the day I shall be raised alive. Such is Jesus son of Mary. It is a statement of truth about which they dispute.” [19:27-33]
Ancient Prophets: The True Story of Jesus-Part 1
Ancient Prophets for a Modern World - Jesus (P):Mary; the Mother of Jesus. (Part 2 )
Ancient Prophets for a Modern World - Jesus (P): The Virtues of Mary in Islam (Part 3)
Ancient Prophets for a Modern World - Jesus (P): Mary’s Biography (Part 4)