Treachery Of Jewish Tribe Banu Nadir

Treachery Of Jewish Tribe Banu Nadir

Mohamad Mostafa Nassar


Shaykh Allamah Shibli Nomani


Amr Ibn Umayya had killed two men belonging to the tribe of Amir and their blood money had not so far been paid off.
A part of it, by virtue of a treaty, was to be paid by the Jews of the Bani Nadir. To demand this, the Prophet (p) himself went to the Bani Nadir. They agreed to pay, but secretly directed a man to reach the second storey and to throw from above a stone, on the Holy Prophet (p). A Jew, Amr Ibn Hajash by name, reached the upper storey with this intention. The Prophet was at that time standing at the foot of the wall below the upper storey. He senses the evil intention and returned to Medina.

As already mentioned, the Quraish had sent to the Jews of the Banu Nadir to kill Muhammad (p) or they would themselves be exterminated. The Banu Nadir being already hostile, this message from the Quraish served as an impetus. They invited the Prophet to come with thirty men to meet their religious scholars, promising that if on hearing him, the divines would declare him to be true, they would not hesitate to accept him as a Prophet.
As they had already planned a revolt, the Prophet (p) asked them to sign a bond before he could trust them. To this they did not agree.

Now the Prophet (p) visited the tribe of the Bani Quraiza and asked them to renew the treaty, which they readily did. But this example set by their co-religionists could not induce the Banu Nadir to come to terms. Again they asked the Prophet to come to them with three men, and they would also call three divines; and if these declared their faith in his Prophethood they would follow suit. The Prophet (p) agreed. But in the way he learnt from a reliable source that the Jews were waiting for him, girded with swords, to kill him as he arrived.

There were various causes for the rebellious attitude of the Bani Nadir. They were well-entrenched in strong forts which defied capture. Moreover, Abdullah Ibn Ubayy had encouraged them with a message telling them not to surrender, for the Banu Quraiza would join them and he too would be coming with 2,000 men for their help.
The Qur’an says:

‘Behold thou not those who dissemble saying unto their brethren who disbelieve among the people of the Book; If ye are driven forth we shall surely go forth with you, and we shall not ever obey any one in your respect, and if ye are attacked, we shall surely succour you. And Allah beareth witness that surely they are liars.’ – Quran 59:11

But the expectations of the Banu Nadir came to naught. The Banu Quraiza did not help them and the hypocrites could not openly come to their aid against the Muslims.

The Holy Prophet (p) besieged their forts for fifteen days. Some of the trees standing around their forts were cut down. Allama Suhaili, in Raud al-Anaf, says that the whole orchard was not cleared away, only the trees known as ‘Linah’ (a kind of date which is not eaten by the Arabs) were removed. The Qur’an says:

‘Whatsoever fine plams (Linah) ye cut down or left standing on roots thereof, it was by the leave of Allah, and in order that He might abase the transgressors.’ – Quran 59:4

It is possible that the trees were providing a hiding place to the enemy and so they were removed.

In the end the Jews of the Banu Nadir agreed to leave medina taking with them all the goods that they could carry on their camels. Accordingly all of them deserted their houses and rode off. Men of wealth and eminence like Sallam Ibn Huyayy Ibn Akhtab, went to Khaibar where they were received with great honour and were recognised as chiefs. This migration is to be remembered as it forms a prelude to the battle of Khaibar.

The Bani Nadir were leaving their homesteads, yet they marched off with such a paraphernalia of splendour that one would mistake them to be going in a festive procession. They rode their camels, to the accompaniment of song and beat of tom-tom by singing girls, including the wife of the famous poet Urwa Ibn al-ward Abasi, who had been purchased by the Jews.

The Medinites said they had never seen so grand a procession. The arms left by them numbered fifty coats of mail, fifty helmets and 340 swords. When the Jews left, there was the problem of the Ansari children who had embraced Judaism.

The Jews had intended to take them away on the ground that they were their co-religionists; but the Ansaris had not allowed it. On this occasion the following verse was revealed:

‘There is no compulsion in Religion.’ – Quran 2:256

Abu Dawud has given this account under the heading of Jihad in the chapter of ‘Compulsion upon the Prisoners’, on the authority of Abdullah Ibn Abbas. [1]

[Scholar, Shaykh Allamah Shibli Nomani provides further evidence in his footnotes for page 95 and 96 on Banu Nadir’s treachery.]

Footnote 1 & 2 for page 95:
1.The Prophet’s talk with Banu Nadir has been reported in two versions: One with the purport mentioned by the author, the other with the purport of ascertaining how the blood money was to be paid to Banu Amir and what has been their practice in this regard. Banu Nadir and the Amir being on friendly terms, the Prophet’s consultation with the Banu Nadir was quite likely. (Sira Halabiya, Vol. II. P. 227)

2. This version is mentioned in Ibn Hisham and other books. Zurqani from Musa Ibn Uqba’s most reliable work on Maghazi, quotes as follows:

‘These men (the Jews of the Bani Nadir) made wicked plans in collaboration with the Quraish, incited them to war and told them the secrets of the Muslims.’ Zurqani, Volume 2, page 83.

Footnote 2, page 96
2. In Fath al-Bari this report has been mentioned on the authority of Ibn Mirdoya and the compiler has declared it to be authentic. The reports in sahih al-Bukhari too show that the Jews of the Bani Nadir were contemplating false-play with the Prophet. The heading in the Bukhari is:

‘The departure of the Prophet towards the tribe of the Banu Nadir to settle the blood money of two men and their intention to do him harm.’


[1] Sirat -un- Nabi [Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam] By Shaykh Allamah Shibli Nomani (r.a) – volume 2, Page 94 – 98