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Sunday 21 June 2015

Ramadan Reading Challenge 2015 Day 5: Prophet Musa (a) and Al Khidr

The challenge for today is to read the story of Prophet Musa (a) and Al Khidr from surah Al Kahf (18:60-81). Prophet Musa (a) was asked as to who was the most learned person and he answered that he was. Allah wanted to show him that he was not the most learned and that if he wanted to meet the one more learned than him then to go to where the two seas meet.

And (remember) when Musa (Moses) said to his boy-servant: "I will not give up (travelling) until I reach the junction of the two seas or (until) I spend years and years in travelling." 

But when they reached the junction of the two seas, they forgot their fish, and it took its way through the sea as in a tunnel. 

So when they had passed further on (beyond that fixed place), Musa (Moses) said to his boy-servant: "Bring us our morning meal; truly, we have suffered much fatigue in this, our journey." 

He said: "Do you remember when we betook ourselves to the rock? I indeed forgot the fish; none but Shaitan (Satan) made me forget to remember it. It took its course into the sea in a strange (way)!" 

[Musa (Moses)] said: "That is what we have been seeking." So they went back retracing their footsteps. 

Then they found one of Our slaves, on whom We had bestowed mercy from Us, and whom We had taught knowledge from Us. 

Musa (Moses) said to him (Khidr): "May I follow you so that you teach me something of that knowledge (guidance and true path) which you have been taught (by Allah)?" 

He (Khidr) said: "Verily you will not be able to have patience with me! 

"And how can you have patience about a thing which you know not?" 

Musa (Moses) said: "If Allah wills, you will find me patient, and I will not disobey you in aught." 

He (Khidr) said: "Then, if you follow me, ask me not about anything till I myself mention of it to you." 

So they both proceeded, till, when they embarked the ship, he (Khidr) scuttled it. Musa (Moses) said: "Have you scuttled it in order to drown its people? Verily, you have committed a thing "Imr" (a Munkar - evil, bad, dreadful thing)." 

He (Khidr) said: "Did I not tell you, that you would not be able to have patience with me?" 

[Musa (Moses)] said: "Call me not to account for what I forgot, and be not hard upon me for my affair (with you)." 

Then they both proceeded, till they met a boy, and he (Khidr) killed him. Musa (Moses) said: "Have you killed an innocent person who had killed none? Verily, you have committed a thing Nukr (a great Munkar - prohibited, evil, dreadful thing)!" 

(Khidr) said: "Did I not tell you that you can have no patience with me?" 

[Musa (Moses)] said: "If I ask you anything after this, keep me not in your company, you have received an excuse from me." 

Then they both proceeded, till, when they came to the people of a town, they asked them for food, but they refused to entertain them. Then they found therein a wall about to collapse and he (Khidr) set it up straight. [Musa (Moses)] said: If you had wished, surely, you could have taken wages for it!" 

(Khidr) said: "This is the parting between me and you, I will tell you the interpretation of (those) things over which you were unable to hold patience. 

"As for the ship, it belonged to Masakin (poor people) working in the sea. So I wished to make a defective damage in it, as there was a king behind them who seized every ship by force. 

"And as for the boy, his parents were believers, and we feared lest he should oppress them by rebellion and disbelief. 

"So we intended that their Lord should change him for them for one better in righteousness and nearer to mercy. 

"And as for the wall, it belonged to two orphan boys in the town; and there was under it a treasure belonging to them; and their father was a righteous man, and your Lord intended that they should attain their age of full strength and take out their treasure as a mercy from your Lord. And I did them not of my own accord. That is the interpretation of those (things) over which you could not hold patience."

You might like to read Ibn Kathir's commentary in Stories of the Qur'an. 

Lessons and Activities

This is one of my favourite stories because it shows that no matter how much knowledge you have, there's always someone with more. The other lesson is that you may think you know something but there's always another explanation - so don't be quick to judge people.

For activities, you can make up scenarios and ask your child what could be possible explanations for them. For example, if a Muslim doesn't say salam to you does that mean that she doesn't like you? What could be possible explanations? Maybe she's shy or maybe she didn't see you or hear you. This is a great exercise in making excuses for others and not judge them negatively.

This is just an idea for an activity. If you have any others then feel free to do them and share.

Comments Required

There are so many other lessons to learn. Can you think of any others? I'd love to hear them. Please write in the comment below.

At the end of this Ramadan Reading Challenge, if you or your children have participated then you will get a prize (not sure what yet - will keep you updated). To be eligible, please leave a comment on what lesson you have learnt from the reading of the story and include any activities that you did to extend it. Just a line or two would be fine (so that I can contact you).


  1. Assalamu Alaikum sister,

    We enjoyed this story so much. Actually my son already knows it well, as we read about it every Friday Alhamdoulilah. One of the great lessons that we took away was the importance of patience. As you mentioned we must not jump to conclusions about people or even situations that befall us. Allah knows all`and just because we don't understand why something is happening we must believe that in the end there is some good in it. Because it comes from Allah. My son was very eager to tell me and his little sister why Khidr did what he did. Even before I could explain it. Alhdoulilah.

    1. Wa alaykum salam. MashaAllah it's great to see your son's eagerness. I love it when children are excited by stories especially from the Qur'an.

  2. Asalamualaikum, al hamdolillah this time I went little dipper about the story of Moses and al Khidr and I am still working with my kids that they need to listen and think before they give their opinion and how important to be patient.


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