Lawh-i-Ayyúb

One of the Tablets revealed in the Ridván Garden, was Lawh-i-Ayyub (Tablet of Job), also known as Suriy-i-Sabr (The Surah of Patience). This Tablet, which is about one-quarter of the length of the Kitab-i-Iqan, is addressed to Haji Muhammad-Taqiy-i-Nayrizi. He was “a man of wealth and culture, highly respected by his fellow citizens, who reposed such trust in him that they would deposit their savings with him and often exchange his receipts instead of money.” [1] Bahá’u’lláh honored him with the title of “Ayyub” (Job) and he was a survivor of the Nayriz upheaval.

“This Tablet, … had a tremendous effect upon the believers in that country. It prepared them for the days of test and trial which Bahá’u’lláh had been foreshadowing for some time. It also gave them faith and courage to bear the ordeal of separation from their Lord with a spirit of resignation and fortitude.”

 

“In the Súriy-i-Sabr Bahá’u’lláh describes the proclamation of the Faith by Vahíd and the circumstances which led to the upheaval in Nayríz. He recounts, at some length, the events which led to the incarceration of the believers and lauds their heroism, self-sacrifice, and eventual martyrdom. He portrays the agony and sufferings which were inflicted upon the survivors, mainly women and children, who were forced to accompany the heads of the martyrs which were carried aloft on lances to Shíráz and paraded in the streets and bazaars of that city. He severely condemns the perpetrators of such atrocities and warns them not to rejoice in their actions, but to fear the wrath of an almighty God who will justly, in the next world, punish them for the cruelties they have inflicted upon His loved ones.”

“In the Súriy-i-Sabr Bahá’u’lláh extols the station of Vahíd in words no pen can befittingly describe. He pays glowing tribute to the staunchness of his faith and the loftiness of his vision, declares that he had remained faithful to the Covenant of God and affirms that he had fulfilled his pledge to his Lord. He bids him rejoice among the ‘Concourse on high’* for being remembered in this Tablet, a Tablet so exalted that the Holy Books of the past had derived their essence from it.”

In the Súriy-i-Sabr, Bahá’u’lláh pays glowing tribute to Hájí Muhammad-Taqí. He recalls the major role he played in the upheaval of Nayríz, the material help he extended to Vahíd, the fortune he expended in defence of the fort and the sufferings he bore with resignation and self-sacrifice. When the believers took refuge in the fort of Khájih, their food and other necessities were provided by Hájí Muhammad-Taqí. Without his material aid, the Bábís would not have been able to defend themselves against the army. Hájí Muhammad-Taqí was one of the survivors of the siege. The Governor of Nayríz, knowing that he was one of the key figures responsible for the spread of the Faith in that town, confiscated all his properties and imprisoned him, intending to torture him to death, with a few others, including Siyyid Ja’far, the learned divine of Yazd, whom we mentioned earlier.

“In the Súriy-i-Sabr Bahá’u’lláh recounts in great detail the story of Job, one of the Prophets of Israel. He states that God conferred upon Job the mantle of prophethood. He was wealthy, owned a vast area of land, and lived with his wife and family in great luxury and comfort. Having been entrusted by God to guide the people to righteousness and truth, he dedicated his life to fulfilling this mission among his community. He summoned them all to the Cause of God, but they became jealous and accused him of insincerity, saying that his devotion to God was due solely to his wealth and material possessions.”

“Bahá’u’lláh asserts that Job was so patient and resigned to the will of God that his thankfulness and devotion to his Lord increased with his trials. At last, having proved his detachment from earthly possessions, God again bestowed upon Job all that was taken from him. His teachings spread and his words penetrated into the hearts of the sincere, enabling them to recognize and acknowledge his station.”

“With this story in the Súriy-i-Sabr Bahá’u’lláh throws light upon patience, one of the most important virtues which God has bestowed on man. He extols the station of those believers who endured hardships and calamities with patience and resignation. Through their fortitude and constancy, their forbearance and long-suffering, these souls attained to such a lofty position that the Concourse on high seek their companionship and long for their blessings.”

“Bahá’u’lláh urges the people of the Bayán to do likewise, counselling them to adorn their beings with the mantle of resignation, to be steadfast in the Cause of God, and never to be dismayed or disheartened by adversity. And He reminds them that, whereas God rewards every good deed in accordance with its merit, in the case of patience and long-suffering, as attested in the Qur’án, the recompense is limitless.”

“These virtues God bestowed upon His Manifestations in a covenant with each of Them, Bahá’u’lláh states. Man should follow Their example. First, he should be patient with himself and learn to withhold himself from passion and desire and from deeds which are forbidden by God. Secondly, he should endure with fortitude any suffering which is inflicted upon him in this life and be steadfast in the Cause of God. Finally, he should be forbearing and patient with the believers and, for the sake of God and His religion, bear any ordeal which they may bring upon him.”

 

The Tablet contains much more. For those interested, here is a provisional translation of the Tablet of Ayyub. For those interested, here is an article discussing this tablet in more detail.

The above excerpts are all from The Revelation of Bahá’u’lláh by Adib Taherzadeh found in Volume 1, chapter 16.

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