Translated by: Jasim al-Rasheed
Sulayman (A. S.) died, many prophets came after him, but the Jews turned away from Allah's religion.
They loved gold and silver very much, turned to worship idols again, and distorted the Torah.
For this reason, their spirits became weak. The Jews were afraid of death and clung to life.
About 550 years before the birth of our prophet Jesus Christ (A. S.), there was an oppressive king called Bakht Nasr, who ruled Babylon.
Bakht Nasr attacked the Jews and occupied their capital Jerusalem. He killed the Jews, destroyed their country, and burnt their holy books such as the Torah. He also destroyed their temples.
When Bakht Nasr returned to Babylon, he brought the Jews with him as prisoners of war.
The Jews lived in Babylon for about a hundred years. Our prophet Uzayr was born in that period of time.
War broke out between Babylon and Persia. Korosh, the King of Persia, won a victory in the war and entered Babylon as a conqueror.
Korosh made friends with our prophet Uzayr and loved him because of his good manners. One day Uzayr went to Korosh and asked him to let the Jews return to their homeland and to permit him to rewrite the Torah which had been destroyed.
Thus, the Jews returned to their homeland, so they loved Uzayr very much.
Our prophet Uzayr spent many years in rewriting the Torah.
To the GardenOur prophet Uzayr had a garden outside the village. He worked with his own hand as the prophets did.
He worked on his farm, plowed his land, watered his plants, gathered fruit, watched his trees and trim their branches.
Our prophet Uzayr (A. S.) had a donkey. He used the donkey to go to the garden and to return home.
He grazed his animals and had mercy on them; he did not lash them with a whip or a stick. He loved people and was kind to them. He advised them, preached to them, and taught them religious law, the Torah and how to live their lives.
It was very hot when our prophet Uzayr rode his donkey and went to his farm. The farm was distant. When Uzayr went to his farm, he passed through the ruins of a forgotten city and ancient scattered cemeteries.
The donkey made its way through the green fields, and then it passed through the ruins of the forgotten city and the ancient graveyards.
The sun rose high in the sky and sent its hot rays to the earth. The ruins of the city appeared. The houses were mere ruins. The stones were scattered here and there. The cemetery was also ruins; some bones were scattered.
Our prophet Uzayr dismounted his donkey and sat in the shade of a wild tree. He was tired and hungry, so he brought out crumbs of bread and a bunch of grapes. He pressed the bunch of grapes into a small bowl; he plunged the crumbs of bread into it. He wanted to soften the crumbs of bread, so he could eat them easily.
Our prophet Uzayr considered carefully the graves, the ruins of the city, and the decayed bones.
Tens of years passed while the wind blew over those ruins and graves. The sun sent its hot rays to them in summer. The rain and snow destroyed them more in winter.
Our prophet 'Uzayr asked himself: "How will life return to those who died hundreds of years ago? How will Allah give them life after their death?"
Uzayr became sleepy and had closed his eyes before he ate his food.
The donkey also ate some grass and slept.
A wonderful thing happened. Uzayr did not wake. The evening came while he did not wake up. He died, his donkey also died!
The Days passedDays and weeks passed, but Uzayr did not return to his village. His sons went out to look for him, but they did not find him. Then went to the farm, but they also did not find him there.
As time advanced, the people forgot; no one remembered him. Months and years passed while Uzayr was at his place; he and his donkey were dead in the shade of the tree.
The donkey became a skeleton; the bones scattered and some of them turned in to earth.
The wonderful thing was that the grape juice was still as it was before; the passing of the years did not affect it.
Uzayr's sons died, and his grandsons grew up.
A hundred years passed after Uzayr's death.
No one of those who knew Uzayr remained alive except an old woman. When Uzayr disappeared, the woman was twenty years old. Now, she became one hundred and twenty years old.
Return of the SoulOne day the clouds gathered in the sky; lightning flashed; thunder boomed, and then it rained.
At a moment which Allah chose as mercy for His servants, the angel Jabrael came down from the sky and stood by the tree between the ruins of the forgotten city and the ancient graveyard.
The soul returned to Uzayr. He woke and began breathing after his death which lasted for one hundred years.
Uzayr woke from his sleeping. He found the place full of light and heard the voice of the angel asking him: "Uzayr, how long did you sleep?"
Uzayr rubbed his eyes and answered: "I slept for a day and part of a day."
The angel explained: "You slept for one hundred years."
"One hundred years?" asked Uzayr.
"Yes," replied the angel, "Allah wanted to bring back life to you; He wanted to make you a sign for the people who denied the raising of the dead. Uzayr, look at your food; it has not spoiled for a hundred years. Your body has not decayed for one hundred years; Allah has kept it."
Then the angel said to Uzayr: "Uzayr, look at your donkey."
Uzayr looked at his donkey that had become decayed, scattered bones.
Then the angel said to Uzayr: "Uzayr, look how Allah will give life to your donkey."
Uzayr looked with astonishment at what had happened. The decayed bones came together to form the skeleton of the donkey, flesh grew, and veins appeared.
The skin grew, and the hair returned. The donkey was dead some moments before, but its breath returned again.
Suddenly, the donkey rose, brayed loudly, and started looking for grass.
Thus, Uzayr said from the bottom of his heart: "Allah is Great! I know that Allah has power over all things! All things happened with Allah's order! Allah has power over all things!" Uzayr prayed to Allah and wept out of love and longing for Him.
Uzayr ate some of his food that remained fresh throughout those years; its taste did not change. Grape juice, which spoils within hours in the intense heat, resisted the changes of time for one whole century!
The ReturnOne day the clouds gathered in the sky; lightning flashed; thunder boomed, and then it rained. Uzayr rose, mounted his donkey, and went back to his village.
Without doubt, the donkey did not know what had happened, so it did not forget the way that led to the village.
Uzayr saw his village in the distance, but he thought that it was another village. The people's faces, clothes, and houses had changed.
Uzayr had no house to go to.
Uzayr had turned into a story which fathers related to sons: "Uzayr, the good person, the pious prophet, went to his farm on a hot day, but he did not return to his house. No one found him. Perhaps the earth has swallowed him up.
"Only Uzayr knew the Torah. The Torah had been lost, but it was he who re-gathered it. He had copies of the original Torah, which Allah revealed to Musa."
Uzayr stood in the middle of the village and called loudly: "People of my village, I am Uzayr! I am Uzayr who disappeared for one hundred years!"
The people of the village gathered around Uzayr. They saw his face blazing with light.
Some villagers said to each other: "This is a mad person. If Uzayr returned to life, he would be one hundred and fifty years old. As for this person, he is about fifty years old."
Uzayr said: "Show me my sons!"
One of the villagers said: "Uzayr's sons died many years ago."
Then Uzayr asked them: "What about my grandsons? Show me my grandsons!"
A villager, aged seventy, answered: "There is one of Uzayr's grandsons; he is about sixty years of age."
Uzayr said: "Take me to him."
Thus, the grandfather and the grandson met each other with astonishment.
"Are you my grandfather? You look younger than me in age!"
Uzayr replied: "It's Allah's miracle! He wanted to show people that He was able to give life to man after he has died."
Uzayr lived in grandson's house and related his moving story to his grandson. He said to him: "I went to a farm outside the village, filled my two baskets with grapes, went to the ruins of the ancient city, I pressed the grapes, and then I slept for a hundred years. I and my donkey died, then Allah raised me and my donkey from the dead to make us a sign for everyone."
In the meantime an old woman, aged one hundred and twenty, came to Uzayr. She was the only witness who knew Uzayr; she was twenty years of age then. She came leaning on a stick and saying: "Who has mentioned Uzayr the people have forgotten?"
She heard Uzayr speaking; she remembered his accent, but she did not see his face because she had lost her sight. She said: "If I could see, I would know this person."
Allah loved 'Uzayr, so Uzayr asked Allah to heal the old woman to bear witness for him.
Allah, the Glorified, healed the old woman and she opened her eyes. She saw Uzayr and said: "Oh! He is Uzayr; Uzayr who disappeared a hundred years ago!"
The grandson said: [My father said:] "We looked for the Torah everywhere, but we did not find it. Only Uzayr knew where it was."
Uzayr said: "I will show you where Musa's Book is; it is in the trunk of an olive-tree. let's go there."
They all went to the place; they saw an old olive-tree.
Many plants grew and covered the place, but Uzayr went to a place between the tree and the near by brook. He dug and dug till he found the wooden box.
The box was very decayed, but the copy of the Torah was still sound.
Everyone believed in the miracle. Uzayr himself came back after he had disappeared and turned into a story.
He died for a hundred years, and then Allah raised him from the dead to make him a sign for His servants.
Some people believed in the miracle; they knew that death was true, the raising of the dead was true, and Allah had power over all things.
However, some people said: "Uzayr is Allah's son."
Some people believed in that; some kept silent to show satisfaction.
Refusing this idea, Uzayr said: "I am Allah's servant and apostle!"
Nevertheless, the Jews went on saying: "Uzayr is Allah's son."
They said that because they wanted to worship something material.
Then Uzayr died; he departed from this world, but the Jews adopted the idea: "Uzayr is Allah's son."
Then Allah, the Glorified, appointed Mohammed (S. A. W.) a prophet and he announced the truth: "Uzayr died for a hundred years, and then Allah raised him from the dead."
Uzayr was one of Allah's prophets; Allah, the Glorified, raised him from the dead to make mankind believe in the Day of Judgment.
The Jews did not keep the Torah; they deviated from the right path; they deviated from faith. So their hearts became as sold as rocks.
In 161 B. C., Antokius, the ruler of Syria, attacked the land of the Jews and ordered the copies of the Torah to be burnt.
Thus, the real Torah, Musa's Torah, became lost. Uzayr had done his best to collect the Torah and to prevent the Jews from distorting it.
Peace be on Uzayr, Allah's prophet, apostle, and miracle!