• the • messenger • of • Allah • was • sent • with • four • swords •

Ali, may Allah have Mercy upon him, said:

“The Messenger of Allah was sent with four swords.

1) A sword for the mushrikeen (polythiests)

“Freedom from (all) obligations (is declared) from Allâh and His Messenger (SAW) to those of the Mushrikûn, with whom you made a treaty. So travel freely (O Mushrikûn) for four months (as you will) throughout the land, but know that you cannot escape (from the Punishment of) Allâh, and Allâh will disgrace the disbelievers. And a declaration from Allâh and His Messenger to mankind on the greatest day (the 10th of Dhul-Hijjah) that Allâh is free from (all) obligations to the Mushrikûn and so is His Messenger. So if you (Mushrikûn) repent, it is better for you, but if you turn away, then know that you cannot escape (from the Punishment of) Allâh. And give tidings (O Muhammad SAW) of a painful torment to those who disbelieve. Except those of the Mushrikûn with whom you have a treaty, and who have not subsequently failed you in aught, nor have supported anyone against you. So fulfill their treaty to them to the end of their term. Surely Allâh loves Al- Mattaqûn. Then when the Sacred Months have passed, then kill the Mushrikûn wherever you find them, and capture them and besiege them, and prepare for them each and every ambush. But if they repent and perform As-Salât, and give Zakât, then leave their way free. Verily, Allâh is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.”

[at-tawbah : 1-5]

2. A sword for the people of the book

“Fight against those who believe not in Allâh, nor in the Last Day, nor forbid that which has been forbidden by Allâh and His Messenger and those who acknowledge not the religion of truth (i.e. Islâm) among the people of the Scripture (Jews and Christians), until they pay the Jizyahwith willing submission, and feel themselves subdued”

[at-tawbah: 29]

3. A sword for the transgressors

“…But if one of them rebels against the other, then fight you (all) against the one that which rebels…”

[al-Hujuraat : 9]

4. A sword for the munaafiqeen (hypocrites)

“O Prophet! Strive hard against the disbelievers and the hypocrites, and be severe against them, their abode will be Hell, and worst indeed is that destination.”

[at-Tahreem : 9]

– Abu Qataadah’s Ma’aalim at-Taa’ifah al-Mansurah p. 11

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