The Intrusive Guests

There is a humorous story in the Qur’an about how shy Muhammad was to tell his dinner guests that it was time to leave. So Allah does it for him!

Some friends had been invited for dinner at Muhammad’s house. A few of them turned up early, much to Muhammad’s chagrin, while dinner was still being prepared. And then, after dinner, they hung around to chit-chat. (Maybe they were thinking about enjoying a couple of after-dinner drinks with the prophet.) Muhammad, instead, was in a bad mood and ready for bed after a long day.

Some of his guests were even chatting up his wives, earning his ire. He had to keep a jealous eye on a couple of these desert Casanovas. They were getting on his frayed nerves, and Muhammad grew increasingly annoyed. But the shy guy prophet didn’t know how to get rid of his guests.

Guess what happened next. Suddenly, Muhammad received a revelation of perfect timing from Allah, the Creator of the universe. Muhammad could always count on Allah to intervene in his little domestic inconveniences. Divine revelation came down from the Almighty God, telling his dinner guest it was time for them to go home.

This verse is in the Qur’an 33:53. Can you fathom this has been written from eternity by Allah, just waiting for it to be revealed when Muhammad’s dinner guests misbehaved?

Was Muhammad simply making up “revelations” to get him out of a tight spot? Why is this inane account in the Qur’an anyway? How does it help a Muslim’s faith?

“O ye who believe! Enter not the Prophet’s houses,- until leave is given you,- for a meal, (and then) not (so early as) to wait for its preparation: but when ye are invited, enter; and when ye have taken your meal, disperse, without seeking familiar talk. Such (behaviour) annoys the Prophet: he is ashamed to dismiss you, but Allah is not ashamed (to tell you) the truth. And when ye ask (his ladies) for anything ye want, ask them from before a screen: that makes for greater purity for your hearts and for theirs. Nor is it right for you that ye should annoy Allah’s Messenger, or that ye should marry his widows after him at any time. Truly such a thing is in Allah’s sight an enormity.” (33:53)

Notice how very detailed and thorough Allah’s instructions were. The rules laid down by Muhammad’s Allah in the book that was his final and ultimate message to mankind:

1. Do not enter Muhammad’s houses unless you’re invited for a meal

2. Do not arrive too early when the meal is not even ready yet

3. After finishing your meal, disperse and go home quickly

4. Do not hang around to make small talk; we’re not interested

5. Do not speak to Muhammad’s wives directly; use a screen

6. For God’s sake, do not annoy Allah’s Messenger

7. Always remember that Muhammad is a very shy guy. He may be too timid to tell you off, but I, Allah, am not shy to tell you off.

8. Do not even think of marrying his wives after he is dead.

What a great role model for hospitality!

This is an excerpt from my book FAITH: MUHAMMAD OR JESUS
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