Ramadan 2009 / 1430: August 22 - September 20
"How Islam Split - Ali, Hassan and Hussein?
Wednesday, 9 September
"Loving Muslims Through Prayer"
Ali: Born in about AD 600 – died January AD 661
Ali was the cousin, adopted son and son-in-law of Mohammed. Disagreement over succession eventually split Islam into the Sunni and Shi’a branches. Ali encountered opposition and civil war during his reign. At about age 60 Ali suffered an assassination attempt while praying in the mosque of Kufa in Iraq - he died soon afterwards.
Hassan: Born in March AD 625 died March AD 670
Hassan (Hasan) was the grandson of Mohammed and the son of Ali and Mohammed’s daughter Fatima. Hassan’s succession to the Caliphate was contested. He retired to a quiet life in Medina till he died, poisoned by his wife, many years later. He is regarded by all Muslims as a martyr.
Hussein: Born January AD 626 at Medina in Saudi Arabia, died October AD 680 at Karbala in Iraq
Hussein, son of Ali, is revered as a martyr, having died in a struggle for the Caliphate. Hussein’s death was significant because it launched the Shi’a movement which is so prominent today in Iraq and Iran; they believe that Hussein should have been Caliph.
- There are literally millions of Muslim men around the world who are named Ali, Hassan and Hussein. Pray for them to encounter the living Messiah (Acts 7:56 and 9:1-5).
- Millions of Iranians and Iraqis commemorate the memory of Hussein’s death each year. Sometimes as many as 7-8 million pilgrims visit Karbala during that time. Many Shi’a men will cut and flail themselves, shedding blood in the memory of Hussein. A popular Shi’a saying tells us, “a single tear shed for Hussein washes away a hundred sins.”
- Pray that Shi’as of Iraq and Iran could see the value of the blood of Jesus (1 Peter 1:18-19).