Islam was spread with Sword.
In today’s world this topic is highly debated, that whether “Islam was spread with peace or Sword”. Is Islam a religion of terrorism or peace? Many Islamic scholars today claim Islam to be religion of peace, and Islam was spread with peace. They also say, that Muhammad fought no offensive fight. They (Muslim Scholars) add that all the fight in Islam were defensive. There was no use of sword or violence to spread Islam.
To answer these questions, and to separate the wheat from chaff, we will have to look in the Historical background, when Qur’an was revealed to Muhammad. As per Qur’an itself, the Arabs did not believed Qur’an to be revealed book, and Muhammad to be Messenger of God. We have many evidences that even his own tribe rejected his message and called him a Jinn Possessed, or a fraud. [Quran 25:4-5]
Some people even claimed Qur’an to be “Tales of Ancient”, and some added that he was Jinn possessed. [Qur'an 83:13] On top of all this, some of the Meccans even demanded him to show some Miracles, so they would believe his claims. But, Muhammad even denied to show any Miracle to them, and said that he was unable to perform any Miracle. [ Qur'an 17:90-93]
As per the above scenario, Meccans had no reason to embrace Islam, as they had no proof of Muhammad’s message authenticity. Then, how come after Hijrah the number of followers increased and in such a way that later even Meccans accepted Islam, with rest of Arabia? The obvious answer for this question would be that, in lack of evidence and reason to support his message, Muhammad resorted to violence to spread Islam. One of the Islamic site says this:-
Allaah has commanded us to prepare the means of fighting against the kuffaar and frightening them. He says (interpretation of the meaning):
“And make ready against them all you can of power, including steeds of war (tanks, planes, missiles, artillery) to threaten the enemy of Allaah and your enemy, and others besides whom, you may not know but whom Allaah does know”
If Islam was only spread by peaceful means, what would the kuffaar have to be afraid of? Of mere words spoken on the tongue? In al-Saheehayn it is narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “I have been supported with fear as far as a month’s journey.” Would the kuffaar be afraid of being told, “become Muslim, but if you do not then you are free to believe and do whatever you want”? or were they afraid of jihad and the imposition of the jizyah and being humiliated? That may make them enter Islam so that they may be spared this humiliation. [Source]
This question other so called peaceful Muslims should answer that, what would kuffar have to be afraid of? Did they (Non-Believers) converted to Islam, just by pleasing of Peaceful Muslims? Were the Non-Believers convinced with message of Muhammad? But, as we have seen above that, Meccans and other Arabs doubted the Message of Muhammad, and even considered him Lunatic, so some other strength must have been used. That power was use of sword and violence. Let’s see what the same site writes further.
Shaykh al-Islam Ibn Taymiyah said in Majmoo’ al-Fataawa, 28/263.
The purpose is that all religion should be for Allaah alone, and that the word of Allaah should be supreme. The word of Allaah is a comprehensive phrase that refers to His words that are contained in His Book. Hence Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“Indeed We have sent Our Messengers with clear proofs, and revealed with them the Scripture and the Balance (justice) that mankind may keep up justice”
The purpose behind sending the Messengers and revealing the Books was so that mankind might keep up justice with regard to the rights of Allaah and the rights of His creation. Then Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“And We brought forth iron wherein is mighty power (in matters of war), as well as many benefits for mankind, that Allaah may test who it is that will help Him (His religion) and His Messengers in the unseen”
So whoever deviates from the Book is to be brought back with iron, i.e. by force. Hence the soundness of the religion is based on the Qur’aan and the Sword. It was narrated that Jaabir ibn ‘Abd-Allaah (may Allaah be pleased with him) said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) commanded us to strike with this, meaning the sword, whoever turns away from this, meaning the Qur’aan.
Ibn al-Qayyim (may Allaah have mercy on him) said in al-Faroosiyyah (p.18):
Allaah sent him – meaning the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) – with the guiding Book and the conquering sword, ahead of the Hour, so that Allaah alone would be worshipped with no partner or associate, and his provision was placed beneath the shade of his sword and spear. Allaah has established the religion of Islam with proof and evidence, and with the sword and spear, both together and inseparable.
This is some of the evidence from the Qur’aan and Sunnah. The evidence clearly indicates that the sword is one of the most important means that led to the spread of Islam. [Source]
This is indeed very true, as we don’t find any other reason, because of which Non-Believers at the time Muhammad, would have excepted Islam. When they( Non-Believers), them self claimed Muhammad to be Charlatan, Fraud, Jinn possessed, and his Message to be “Fables of ancient”. The above mentioned reason is appropriate for the spread of Islam, even in early day. So, their is very little room to claim, Islam is a religion of peace, and it was spread with peace.
The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “I have been sent ahead of the Hour with the sword so that Allaah will be worshipped alone, and my provision has been placed in the shade of my spear, and humiliation has been decreed for those who go against my command, and whoever imitates a people is one of them.” Narrated by Ahmad, 4869; Saheeh al-Jaami’, 2831.
The fact that the sword and power were means of spreading Islam is not a sources of shame for Islam, rather it is one of its strengths and virtues, because that makes people adhere to that which will benefit them in this world and in the Hereafter. Many people are foolish and lacking in wisdom and knowledge, and if they are left to their own devices they will remain blinded to the truth, indulging in their whims and desires. So Allaah has prescribed jihad in order to bring them back to the truth and to that which will benefit them. Undoubtedly wisdom dictates that the fool should be prevented from doing that which will harm him, and should be forced to do that which will benefit him. [Source]
Well said, Why should Muslims be ashamed of mass murder, beheading, rape, sudden raid etc of Muhammad? After all he is the most Noble Human being whom Allah created till date , and Muslims have to follow and elevate him, next to Allah’s throne. This is what Allah has revealed for his servants to be the most Noble act, which will win them a Ticket of Jannat (Heaven). But, unfortunately it is the most heinous act for Non-Believers, and we are free to criticize such acts and such Prophet of God.