The Golden Chain

Abu Bakr – Ali’s Speech about Him

Ali (may God be pleased with him) stood outside the house in which Abu Bakr, the second Saint in the Golden Chain (may God be pleased with him), had just died and made the following speech:

“O Abu Bakr, may God have Mercy upon you. You were the closest Companion and friend of the Messenger of God (peace and blessings upon him); you were a comfort to him; you were the one he trusted most. If he had a secret, he would tell it to you and if he needed to consult someone regarding a matter, he would consult you. You were the first of your people to embrace Islam and you were the most sincere in your faith. Your faith was stronger than any other person’s, as was the degree to which you feared God. And you were wealthier than anyone else in terms of what you acquired from the religion of God, the Possessor of Might and Majesty. You cared most for both the Messenger of God and Islam. Of all the people, you were the best Companion to the Messenger of God; you possessed the best qualities; you had the best past; you ranked highest; and you were closest to him. And of all the people, you resembled the Messenger of God the most in terms of his guidance and demeanor. Your ranking was higher than anyone else’s and the Prophet honoured you and held you in higher esteem than anyone else. On behalf of the Messenger of God and Islam, may God reward you with the best of rewards. When people disbelieved in the Messenger of God, you believed in him. Throughout his life you were both his eyes with which he saw and his ears with which he heard. God has named you the truthful in His book when He said,

‘It is the one who brings the truth and the one who accepts it as true who are mindful of God.’ (Qur’an 39:33)

When people were stingy in their support for the Messenger of God, you comforted him. And when people sat still, you stood side by side with the Messenger of God, facing the same hardships that he faced. In times of hardship, you were truly a noble Companion of his. You were the ‘second of the two’, his Companion in the Cave, and the one upon whom tranquility descended. You were his Companion during the migration and you were his successor regarding the religion of God and His nation. And a truly good successor you proved to be when the people apostatizes. You did what no other Caliph of a Prophet did before you. You stood up firmly and bravely when his other Companions lost their resolve and became soft. And when they became weak, you adhered to the methodology of the Messenger of God. You truly were as the Messenger of God said: weak in your body but strong regarding the commands of God; humble in yourself, but lofty in your ranking with God; well esteemed in the eyes of the people, honoured and great in their hearts. Not a single one of them had any reason to dislike you, to be suspicious of you, nor to hold you in contempt – the weak and humble you have always treated as strong and honourable , making sure you gave them what was rightfully theirs. And in this regard, you have always treated relatives and strangers equally. Of all people, you respect those who are the most obedient to God and who fear Him most. In your overall character, you embody truth and compassion. Your speech has always been characterized by the qualities of wisdom and decisiveness. And you have always struck a noble balance between gentleness and firmness. You have always based your decisions on knowledge, and once you have made your decisions, you have always kept a firm resolve to execute them – Verily to God do we belong and to Him is our return. We are pleased with and submit to God’s decree. And by God, other than the death of the Messenger of God, Muslims have never been afflicted with a greater calamity than the calamity of your death. You have always been a protector, a sanctuary, and source of honour for this religion. May God make you join the company of His Prophet Muhammad and may he not deprive us of your reward. And may He not lead us astray after you.”

 

From ‘The Biography of Abu Bakr as-Siddeeq’ by Dr Ali Muhammad Muhammad As-Sallaabee.