نصّ العهد النبوي لنصارى نجران
Yasin T. al-Jibouri



Following the agreement reached at the end of the Mubahala, the Prophet decided to write a covenant to regulate the relationship between the Muslims and the Christians so it would remain valid for all time to come. This covenant is very important because it reflects Islam’s respect for other religions, something which many Muslims nowadays need to learn, particularly the fanatical Wahhabis and Salafis of the world who are funded and supported by Saudi Arabia and all Gulf countries. These Wahhabis and Salafis have given the world the worst impression about Islam.

You can find this text Online if you copy and paste this Arabic text in your Browser’s Search engine:

نصّ العهد النبوي لنصارى نجران ملزم للمسلمين في كلّ مكان وزمان

It means “The Prophet’s Covenant to the Christians of Najran (Yemen) is binding on Muslims everywhere and at all time.” You can also find its Arabic mother sources in this book by Ali al-Ahmadi al-Mayanji:

مكاتيب الرسول

The footnote at the end of the Arabic text provides you with more information.

Here is the text of the covenant and my translation of it:

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

“هذا كتاب امان من الله ورسوله للذين اوتوا الكتاب من النصارى، من كان منهم على دين نجران، وان على شيء من نحل النصرانية، كتبه لهم محمد بن عبدالله، رسول الله الى الناس كافة؛ ذمة لهم من الله ورسوله.

“انه عهد عهده الى المسلمين من بعده. عليهم ان يعوه ويعرفوه ويؤمنوا به ويحفظوه لهم، ليس لاحد من الولاة، ولا لذي شيعة من السلطان وغيره نقضه، ولا تعديه الى غيره، ولا حمل مؤونة من المؤمنين، سوى الشروط المشروطة في هذا الكتاب . فمن حفظه ورعاه ووفى بما فيه، فهو على العهد المستقيم والوفاء بذمة رسول الله .ومن نكثه وخالفه الى غيره وبدله فعليه وزره؛ وقد خان امان الله، ونكث عهده وعصاه، وخالف رسوله، وهو عند الله من الكاذبين.

أولا، “ان احمي جانبهم – اي النصارى– وأذبّ عنهم وعن كنائسهم وبيعهم وبيوت صلواتهم ومواضع الرهبان ومواطن السياح، حيث كانوا من جبل او واد او مغار او عمران او سهل او رمل.”

ثانيا، “ان احرس دينهم وملتهم اين كانوا؛ من بر او بحر، شرقا وغرباً، بما احفظ به نفسي وخاصتي، واهل الاسلام من ملتي.”

ثالثا، “ان ادخلهم في ذمتي وميثاقي واماني، من كل اذى ومكروه او مؤونة او تبعة . وان اكون من ورائهم، ذابا عنهم كل عدو يريدني واياهم بسوء، بنفسي واعواني واتباعي واهل ملتي.”

رابعا، “ان اعزل عنهم الاذى في المؤن التي حملها اهل الجهاد من الغارة والخراج، الا ما طابت به انفسهم . وليس عليهم اجبار ولا اكراه على شيء من ذلك”.

خامسا، “لا تغيير لأسقف عن اسقفيته، ولا راهب عن رهبانيته، ولا سائح عن سياحته، ولا هدم بيت من بيوت بيعهم، ولا ادخال شيء من بنائهم في شيء من ابنية المساجد، ولا منازل المسلمين . فمن فعل ذلك فقد نكث عهد الله وخالف رسوله وحال عن ذمة الله”.

سادسا، “ان لا يحمل الرهبان والاساقفة، ولا من تعبد منهم، او لبس الصوف، او توحد في الجبال والمواضع المعتزلة عن الامصار شيئا من الجزية او الخراج”.

سابعا، “لا يجبر احد ممن كان على ملة النصرانية كرها على الاسلام، ويخفض لهم جناح الرحمة، ويكف عنهم اذى المكروه حيث كانوا، واين كانوا من البلاد”.

ثامنا، “ان اجرم واحد من النصارى او جنى جناية، فعلى المسلمين نصره والمنع والذب عنه والغرم عن جريرته، والدخول في الصلح بينه وبين من جنى عليه . فإما مُنّ عليه، او يفادي به”.

تاسعا، “لا يرفضوا ولا يخذلوا ولا يتركوا هملا، لأني اعطيتهم عهد الله على ان لهم ما للمسلمين وعليهم ما على المسلمين”.

عاشرا، “على المسلمين ما عليهم بالعهد الذي استوجبوا حق الذمام، والذب عن الحرمة، واستوجبوا ان يذب عنهم كل مكروه، حتى يكونوا للمسلمين شركاء فيما لهم، وفيما عليهم”.

حادي عشر، “لهم ان احتاجوا في مرمة – ترميم –بيعهم وصوامعهم، او شيء من مصالح امورهم ودينهم، الى رفد من المسلمين وتقوية لهم على مرمتها – ترميمها–، ان يرفدوا على ذلك ويعاونوا، ولا يكون ذلك دينا عليهم، بل تقوية لهم على مصلحة دينهم ووفاء بعهد رسول الله موهبة لهم ومنة لله ورسوله عليه.”[1]


In the Name of Allah, the most Gracious, the most Merciful

This is a security document from Allah and His Messenger to those who have been given the Book (Bible) from among the Christians, those who follow the creed of Najran and whoever follows the beliefs of Christianity written to them by Muhammed son of Abdullah, the Messenger of Allah to all people, a covenant to them from Allah and His Messenger.

It is a covenant which is entrusted to the Muslims after him (after the Prophet’s demise) and which they must comprehend, recognize and safeguard for them. Neither a ruler nor any man who is strengthened by the authority of a ruler has the right to revoke it, nor to replace it with something else, nor to over-burden the believers (Muslims) with anything other than the terms stated in this document. Anyone who safeguards it, observes it and fulfills its contents is surely on the straightforward covenant and is loyal to his commitment to the Messenger of Allah. And anyone who reneges on it or changes it to something else or substitutes it with something else shall bear the burden of his sin, and he is one who betrays the trust of Allah, who reneges on his pledge, who disobeys Him and disobeys His Messenger, and he is counted by Allah among the liars:

FIRST: That I protect them—the Christians—and defend them, their churches, places of worship, places of their prayers, places of the monks, the (sacred) areas which they tour wherever they may be in a mountain or a valley or a cave or a city or a plain or a sandy track.

SECOND: That I guard their religion and their faith wherever they may be, on dry land or on a sea, east or west, with whatever I guard my own self and whatever belongs to me and the followers of Islam from my creed.

THIRD: That I include them in my trust, in my covenant, in my security against any harm or anything shunned or any burden or any responsibility, and that I shall be behind them to protect them from any enemy that intends to harm me and their own selves, to do so with my own self, with my supporters, with my followers, with the people who follow my creed.

FOURTH: That I keep away from them any harm of burdens which people who perform jihad bear, from any assault or khiraj (land tax) other than what they willingly pay without being forced or coerced into doing any such thing.

FIFTH: That I do not remove a bishop from his bishopric, nor a monk from his monastery, nor a pilgrim from his pilgrimage, nor demolish any of their churches, nor let any construction of a mosque infringe on their own buildings, nor should any house of the Muslims do so; anyone who does any of these things reneges from his covenant with Allah, disobeys His Messenger and swerves from the covenant of Allah.

SIXTH: Neither a monk nor a bishop, nor any of them who worships or wears woolen clothes or seeks solitude in the mountains or in areas that are isolated from cities should ever be required to pay any jizya (protection tax) or khiraj.

SEVENTH: Whoever follows the Christian faith must not be forced into becoming a Muslim; mercy must be spread for them and anything harmful must be kept away from them wherever they may be in the land.

EIGHTH: If any Christian commits a crime or a serious offense, the Muslims must help him, prevent harm from reaching him, protect him and not let him bear the brunt of what he commits; rather, reconciliation must be established between him and his victim: He must either be pardoned or ransom is paid on his behalf.

NINETH: They (Christians) must not be rejected, betrayed or neglected because I have given them Allah’s covenant that they should have what the Muslims have and be obligated to the Muslims’ obligations.

TENTH: Muslims must carry out their obligations towards the pact which the covenant obligates; they should protect sanctities, and they should keep away every harm from them (Christians) so they may become partners with the Muslims: They have what the Muslims have and are obligated to what the Muslims are obligated.

ELEVENTH: They may, if they need repairs to their churches and places of worship or anything related to their interests and creed, get assistance from the Muslims to make such repairs; they must be assisted, and this must not be regarded as a debt against them but as support in the interest of their religion and as the fulfillment of the covenant of the Messenger of Allah, as a gift to them and a boon from Allah and His Messenger to them.

This reflects how much tolerance has towards other creeds and belies those who advocate the killing of non-Muslims under this pretext or that. This text shows you the pristine beauty of Islam and the Prophet’s self-confidence and deep conviction. It is a charter of human rights the like of which is seldom found anywhere.

In Tabari’s Tarikh, it is stated that during the 10th year of Hijra (631 A.D.), the Prophet (P) sent Ali (a.s.) to Yemen. Prior to that, he had sent Khalid ibn al-Walid in order to call the people of Yemen to Islam, but nobody accepted it. Then the Prophet (P) sent Ali (a.s.) and authorized him that he might, if he so desired, dismiss Khalid or anyone else from his party. So, Ali (a.s.) went to Yemen and read the Prophet’s statement to the people there. As a result, in one day, all members of the clan of Hamadan were converted to Islam. Ali (a.s.) informed the Prophet (P) of this success whereupon the Prophet (P) said, “A Peace with the Hamdani­tes!” Thereafter, all Yemenites entered into the folds of Islam. Ali (a.s.) again informed the Prophet (P) of the progress which he had made. The Prophet (P) was so over-joyed, he offered a sajda (prostration) to thank Allah.

During this year, the Prophet (P) deputed Ali (a.s.) to go to receive the jizya from the Najranites. Ali obeyed the orders and joined the Prophet only during the Farewell Pilgrimage. It was on the 25th of Dhul-Qi`dah/February 25, 632 A.D. that the Prophet left Medina for hajj.

[1]Ali al-Ahmadi al-Mayanji, Makateeb al-Rasool (letters of the Prophet), Dar al- Hadith Press (Tehran, Iran), first ed., 1998, pp. 172-176. More details are compiled and provided by Muhammed Hameed-Allah in his collection of documents from the Prophet’s era and from that of the first four caliphs which Dar al-Nafa’is (house of precious items) in Beirut, Lebanon, published in 1987 (6th edition).