Abu Bakr Timeline

Abu Bakr Timeline

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  • 573 - 634

    Life of Abu Bakr, the first caliph of the Rashidun Caliphate.

  • 622

    Muhammad undertakes the Hegira (Hijra), the migration from Mecca to Medina, establishing the start of the Islamic calendar.

  • 625

    Battle of Uhud: Quraysh tribe defeats the Muslims.

  • 629

    Battle of Mu'tah: Muslims attempt to capture the village east of the Jordan River from the Byzantine Empire to show their expanding dominance, resulting in a Muslim defeat.

  • 632

    Muhammad dies in Medina, not clearly naming a successor to lead the Muslim people.

  • 632 - 634

    Abu Bakr becomes the first caliph (successor to Muhammad) of the Rashidun Caliphate.

  • 632 - 633

    Ridda Wars (Wars of Apostacy): re-unification of the Arabian Peninsula under the banner of Islam.

  • Dec 632

    Battle of Yamama: Musaylimah (the Arch Liar) is killed in battle.

  • 634

    Battle of Ajnadayn: Muslim invasion of Syria.

Abū Bakr

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Abū Bakr, also called al-Ṣiddīq (Arabic: “the Upright”), (born 573—died August 23, 634), Muhammad’s closest companion and adviser, who succeeded to the Prophet’s political and administrative functions, thereby initiating the office of the caliph.

Of a minor clan of the ruling merchant tribe of Quraysh at Mecca, Abū Bakr purportedly was the first male convert to Islam, but this view is doubted by a majority of Muslim historians. Abū Bakr’s prominence in the early Muslim community was clearly marked by Muhammad’s marriage to Abū Bakr’s young daughter ʿĀʾishah and again by Muhammad’s choosing Abū Bakr as his companion on the journey to Medina (the Hijrah, 622). In Medina he was Muhammad’s chief adviser (622–632) but functioned mainly in conducting the pilgrimage to Mecca in 631 and leading the public prayers in Medina during Muhammad’s last illness.

On Muhammad’s death (June 8, 632), the Muslims of Medina resolved the crisis of succession by accepting Abū Bakr as the first khalīfat rasūl Allāh (“deputy [or successor] of the Prophet of God,” or caliph). During his rule (632–634), he suppressed the tribal political and religious uprisings known as the riddah (“political rebellion,” sometimes translated as “apostasy”), thereby bringing central Arabia under Muslim control. Under his rule the Muslim conquests of Iraq and Syria began, although it is not clear whether he himself was aware of these military forays from the beginning.

The first written compilation of the Quʾrān is said to have taken place during Abū Bakr’s caliphate, after the deaths of several Quʾrān reciters in the Battle of Yamama raised the possibility that parts of the text could be lost and ʿUmar ibn al-Khaṭṭāb (Abū Bakr’s eventual successor as caliph) urged Abū Bakr to have the Quʾrān written down.

During his last illness, Abū Bakr was nursed by ʿĀʾishah. As he requested, he was buried in ʿĀʾishah’s apartment, close to where her husband, the Prophet Muhammad, had been buried in accordance with Muhammad’s reported utterance that a prophet should be buried where he dies.

This article was most recently revised and updated by Noah Tesch, Associate Editor.

Pedigree of Life Abu Bakr Ash Shiddiq

Abu Bakr came from the Bani Taim tribe. He has the real name Abdullah ibn Abi Quhafah. In another narration, Abu Bakr is said to have the original name Abdul Ka’bah which means servant of the Kaaba. However, the name was changed by Rasulullah when he converted to Islam.

Abu Bakr was born 2 years and 6 months after the Year of the Elephant. He was the son of Ustman bin Amir bin Amr, who was known by the nickname Abu Quhafah with Salma bint Shakhr bin Amr bin Ka’ab bin Sa’ad bin Taim, famous for the title Ummu al-Khair.

He is the father of Aisha ra. who is the wife of Rasulullah SAW. He became the first caliph after the death of the Prophet Muhammad after the incident at Saqifah bani Sa’idah.

Abu Bakr Timeline - History

The start of Islam is marked in the year 610, following the first revelation to the prophet Muhammad at the age of 40. Muhammad and his followers spread the teachings of Islam throughout the Arabian peninsula. Soon after the death of the prophet Muhammad, there were military expeditions, called "futuhat," or literally "openings," into what is now Egypt and other parts of North Africa. In other parts of the world, Islam spread through trade and commerce. The following is a brief timeline that highlights some of the major occurrences in Islam's development, as well as the geographical spread of Islam to some of the countries featured in the film.

570 C.E. Muhammad is born in Mecca. He comes from a noble family and is well-known for his honesty and upright character.

610 C.E. According to Muslim belief, at the age of 40, Muhammad is visited by the angel Gabriel while on retreat in a cave near Mecca. The angel recites to him the first revelations of the Quran and informs him that he is God's prophet. Later, Muhammad is told to call his people to the worship of the one God, but they react with hostility and begin to persecute him and his followers.

622 C.E. After enduring persecution in Mecca, Muhammad and his followers migrate to the nearby town of Yathrib (later to be known as Medina), where the people there accepted Islam. This marks the "hijrah" or "emigration," and the beginning of the Islamic calendar. In Medina, Muhammad establishes an Islamic state based on the laws revealed in the Quran and the inspired guidance coming to him from God. Eventually he begins to invite other tribes and nations to Islam.

630 C.E. Muhammad returns to Mecca with a large number of his followers. He enters the city peacefully, and eventually all its citizens accept Islam. The prophet clears the idols and images out of the Kaaba and rededicates it to the worship of God alone.

633 C.E. Muhammad dies after a prolonged illness. The Muslim community elects his father-in-law and close associate, Abu Bakr, as caliph, or successor.

638 C.E. Muslims enter the area north of Arabia, known as "Sham," including Syria, Palestine, Lebanon and Iraq.

641 C.E. Muslims enter Egypt and rout the Byzantine army. Muslims consider their conquest as the liberation of subjugated people, since in most instances they were under oppressive rule.

655 C.E. Islam begins to spread throughout North Africa.

661 C.E. Imam Ali is killed, bringing to an end the rule of the four "righteous caliphs": Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman, and Ali. This also marks the beginning of the Umayyad rule.

711 C.E. Muslims enter Spain in the west and India in the east. Eventually almost the entire Iberian Peninsula is under Islamic control.

732 C.E. Muslims are defeated at Potiers in France by Charles Martel.

750 C.E. The Abbasids take over rule from the Umayyads, shifting the seat of power to Baghdad.

1000 C.E. Islam continues to spread through the continent of Africa, including Nigeria, which served as a trading liaison between the northern and central regions of Africa.

1099 C.E. European Crusaders take Jerusalem from the Muslims. Eventually Muslims defeat the Crusaders and regain control of the holy land.

1120 C.E. Islam continues to spread throughout Asia. Malaysian traders interact with Muslims who teach them about Islam.

1299 C.E. The earliest Ottoman state is formed in Anatolia, Turkey.

1453 C.E. Ottomans conquer the Byzantine seat of Constantinople and change its name to Istanbul.

Circa 1800 C.E. Approximately 30 percent of Africans forced into slavery in the United States are Muslim.

1870-1924 C.E. Muslim immigrants from the Arab world voluntarily come to the United States until the Asian Exclusion Act is passed in 1924.

World War I ends with the defeat and dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, which was the last of the Islamic empires. Many regions populated by Muslims in Africa and Asia are colonized by Europeans. Traditional religious ways of life are threatened and, in some cases, destroyed.

1930 C.E. The Nation of Islam is created in the U.S. by W. D. Fard. It is based on some Islamic ideas, but contains innovations, such as the appointment or declaration of Elijah Muhammad as a prophet.

1948 C.E. The state of Israel is created. Some Palestinian and Lebanese refugees flee to the United States, among them, Muslims and Christians.

1952 C.E. The McCarren-Walter Act relaxes the U.S. ban on Asian immigration. Muslim students come to the U.S. from many nations.

1965 C.E. Revisions of immigration law further open the doors for Muslim immigration.

1975 C.E. Wallace D. Muhammad, the son of Elijah Muhammad, takes over leadership of the Nation of Islam after his father's death and brings most of his followers into mainstream Islam. He later creates the Muslim American Society, which attracts many members, most of whom are African-American.

1979 C.E. The Iranian Revolution results in the establishment of the Islamic Republic of Iran, the first attempt at an Islamic state in the modern era.

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Abu Bakr

Abu Bakr (ca. 573-634) was the first caliph, or successor of Mohammed as ruler of the Arab state. He held together the political structure created by Mohammed at Medina, defeated separatist revolts, and initiated the expansion of Islam into Syria and Iraq.

Friend of Mohammed and three years younger, Abu Bakr was born in Mecca of the tribe of Quraysh and became a merchant. He was possibly the first mature man to accept Mohammed as the Prophet and to become a Moslem. After conversion he spent much of his wealth in buying and setting free Moslem slaves. However, his clan gave him little protection, and he suffered indignities from Mohammed's opponents. As Mohammed's closest friend and adviser, he alone accompanied him on his Hijra, the migration from Mecca to Medina in 622.

In Medina, Abu Bakr helped Mohammed in many unobtrusive ways, and his knowledge of the genealogies and intrigues of the numerous Arab tribes was a great asset. The two men were further bound together by Mohammed's marriage to Abu Bakr's daughter Aisha in 623 or 624. Abu Bakr did not command any important military expedition for Mohammed, but he was the leader of the pilgrimage to Mecca in 630 and was appointed to lead the public prayers during Mohammed's last illness. By signs as slight as these, he was marked out as caliph.

On Mohammed's death in June 632, the future of the state was uncertain, but the oratory of Omar (later the second caliph) persuaded the men of Medina to accept Abu Bakr as caliph. Much of his reign was occupied with quelling revolts. One had already broken out in Yemen, and soon there were about five others in different parts of Arabia. The leaders mostly claimed to be prophets, and the revolts are known as "the wars of the apostasy," though the underlying reasons were mainly political. The chief battle was that of Yamama in May 633, when Musaylima, the strongest insurgent leader, was defeated and killed by a Moslem army under Khalid ibn al-Walid.

Mohammed had foreseen the need for expeditions outside Arabia to absorb the energies of his Arab allies and prevent their fighting one another and Abu Bakr, despite the threatening situation after Mohammed's death, sent an expedition from Medina toward Syria. As Arabia was pacified after the revolts, other expeditions were sent to Iraq, then a part of the Persian Empire, and to Syria. Shortly before Abu Bakr's death in August 634, his general Khalid, following a celebrated desert march from Iraq to Damascus, defeated a large Byzantine army at Ajnadain in Palestine and gave the Arabs a foothold in that country. Thus, in the short reign of Abu Bakr the embryonic Islamic state was not only preserved intact but was launched on the movement of expansion which produced the Arab and the Islamic empires.

The Story of Abu Bakr from His Successor

Very little is known about the life of Abu Bakr, and the only known written account about him at present may be found in the work of al-Umari. It may be interesting to note that this account of Abu Bakr comes from the mouth of his successor, Musa, and seems to be an explanation of how the latter came to power. One English translation of al-Umari’s conversation with Musa is as follows,

“So Abubakar equipped 200 ships filled with men and the same number equipped with gold, water, and provisions, enough to last them for years…they departed and a long time passed before anyone came back. Then one ship returned and we asked the captain what news they brought.
He said, 'Yes, Oh Sultan, we travelled for a long time until there appeared in the open sea a river with a powerful current…the other ships went on ahead, but when they reached that place, they did not return and no more was seen of them…As for me, I went about at once and did not enter the river.'
The Sultan got ready 2,000 ships, 1,000 for himself and the men whom he took with him, and 1,000 for water and provisions. He left me to deputies for him and embarked on the Atlantic Ocean with his men. That was the last we saw of him and all those who were with him.
And so, I became king in my own right.”

Whilst the aim of this story was to explain the way in which Musa gained the throne of the Mali Empire, heralding the beginning of a new lineage of rulers, there seems to be much more focus in modern times on the actions of Abu Bakr.

If the words of Musa and al-Umari are to be taken as reliable (this tale is not found in any other African or Arabic source, with the exception, perhaps, of oral tradition), then the Mansa’s abdication and subsequent voyage into the Atlantic Ocean may be considered as events that actually took place.

Immigrating to Medina

The most significant event in the life of Abu Bakr in Mecca was his company with the Prophet (s) during immigration to Medina and hiding in the Cave of Thawr. ⎥] This event happened on the eve of Thursday, Rabi' I 1, 1 AH (14 years after the beginning of the Prophet's (s) mission, September 13, 622 CE). The famous report is that when the Prophet (s) became aware of the plot of his assassination through revelation, went out of Mecca with Abu Bakr who was already prepared for immigration, and went toward Yathrib through a detour until they arrived at the cave. ⎦]

After immigration to Medina, Abu Bakr resided in Sunkh, a neighborhood around Medina. ⎧] According to some sources, he was with the Prophet (s) everywhere in Medina, and eight months later that the Prophet (s) established brotherhood contract among the Muhajirun and Ansar, he (s) called Abu Bakr and Umar brothers ⎨] however, in Rafi' al-Din Hamadani's Persian translation of Sira Ibn Ishaq, it is mentioned that "Abu Bakr…became brother with Kharija b. (Zayd b. Abi) Zuhayr who was among Ansar." ⎩]

In Medina, Abu Bakr visited the Prophet (s) every other day and according to some reports, he was with the Prophet (s) in all battles. ⎪]

Abu Bakr as-Siddiq

Abu Bakr was always a very close Companion of the Holy Prophet, he knew him better than any other man. He knew how honest and upright the Prophet was. Such knowledge of the Prophet made Abu Bakr be the first man to follow the Message of Prophet Muhammad sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam. He was indeed the first adult male to accept Islam.

The Holy Prophet told Abu Bakr what had happened at Mount Hira', he told him that Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala had revealed to him and made him His Messenger. When Abu Bakr heard this from the Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam, he did not stop to think, he at once became a Muslim. He submitted to Islam with such determination that once the Holy Prophet himself remarked, "I called people to Islam, everybody thought over it, at least for a while, but this was not the case with Abu Bakr, the moment I put Islam before him, he accepted it without any hesitation." He was titled as-Siddiq by the Prophet because his faith was too strong to be shaken by anything.

In fact, Abu Bakr was more than a great believer, as soon as he became a Muslim, he immediately began to preach Islam to others. Among those who accepted Abu Bakr's invitation to Islam were 'Uthman, Az-Zubayr, Talhah, 'Abdur-Rahman ibn Awf, Sa'ad ibn Waqqas and others who later became the pillars of Islam.

Abu Bakr's love of the Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam was so great that he was willing to sacrifice his life for the sake of protecting and comforting the Prophet saw. Such love and sacrifice were demonstrated when one day the Holy Prophet was saying his prayers in the Ka'bah, while some of the chiefs of Makkah were sitting in the court yard of the Ka'bah. Seeing the Prophet praying, 'Uqbah ibn Abi Mu'it took a long piece of cloth and put it around the Prophet's neck and twisted it hard in an attempt to strangle the Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam to death. At that moment Abu Bakr happened to pass by from a distance, he saw 'Uqbah trying to strangle the Prophet to death. Immediately Abu Bakr ran to the help of the Prophet, he pushed 'Uqbah aside and took the cloth from aroundthe Prophet's neck. Thereupon the enemies of Islam came down upon Abu Bakr and beat him unmercifully, although Abu Bakr with faith like a rock did not care for his own suffering, he was glad that he was able to save the Prophet of Allah, even at the risk of his own life.

Abu Bakr with the wealth he had, also had a major role in freeing some of the Muslim slaves, who were barbarically tortured by their heartless Mushrik masters to give up the faith and return to their masters' beliefs. The heartless monsters tried all kinds of torture: they made them lie all naked on the burning desert sand, putting big stones on their chest, as well as other kinds of torture. Here Abu Bakr's wealth came to the rescue, as he bought the poor helpless slaves from their inhuman masters and set them free, Bilal al-Habashi, the slave of 'Umayyah ibn Khalaf, was among those who were set free by Abu Bakr. Bilal became afterwards the mu'adhin at the Prophet's mosque.

Migration to Madinah

Islam was growing rapidly in Makkah, the enemies of Islam were getting frustrated by this rapid growth. The chiefs of Makkah found that it is necessary for them to get rid of the Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam before Islam can cause a real threat to them, so they planned to kill the Prophet. Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala revealed to his Prophet the intentions of the non-believers and ordered him to migrate to Madinah. So the Prophet quickly went to Abu Bakr's house who was among the few that were left in Makkah with the majority of Muslims having already migrated to Madinah.

The Prophet informed Abu Bakr that he was commanded to migrate to Madinah that night and that he has chosen him to have the honor of joining him on his migration. Abu Bakr's heart was full of joy, "I have been looking forward to this day for months," he exclaimed.

The Makkans were so eager to find the Prophet they were searching for him like mad hounds. Once they came to the mouth of the cave, Abu Bakr grew pale with fright, he feared not for himself, but for the life of the Holy Prophet. However, the Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam remained calm and said to Abu Bakr, "do not fear, certainly Allah is with us" . Such words quickly calmed down Abu Bakr and brought back tranquility to his heart.

Participation in Battles

Abu Bakr, being the closest of Companions to the Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam, took part in all the battles that Prophet Muhammad had fought.

At 'Uhud and Hunayn, some members of the Muslim army showed signs of weakness, however, Abu Bakr's faith never wavered, he always stood like a rock by the side of the Prophet.

Abu Bakr's faith and determination to raise the banner of Islam were so great that at Badr, one of his sons, who had not yet embraced Islam was fighting among the enemies, Abu Bakr was so eager to find his son in the battle that he was searching for him amongst the enemies in order to slay him.

Abu Bakr's great love of the Prophet was demonstrated when peace talks at Hudaibiya were held. During the negotiations, the spokesman of Quraysh was touching the beard of the Prophet every now and then. Abu Bakr's love for the Prophet was so great that he could bear no more, he took out his sword and looked angrily at the man saying, " . if that hand touches the beard of the Prophet again, it will not be allowed to go back."

Tabuk was the last expedition of the Holy Prophet. He was keen to make it a great success, he therefore asked people to help the expedition with whatever they could. This brought the best out of Abu Bakr who beat all records as he took all his money and household articles and heaped them at the Prophet's feet.

"Have you left anything for your children?" asked the Prophet. Abu Bakr then responded with great faith "Allah and his Messenger are enough for them." Companions standing around were stunned they realized that whatever they do they could not outdo Abu Bakr in the field of service to Islam.

The Successor of the Prophet

The first Hajj under Islam was in the ninth year of Hijrah. The Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam was too busy at Madinah to lead the Hajj, so he sent Abu Bakr as his agent, he was to lead the Hajj in place of the Prophet.

The Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam led the prayers himself ever since he arrived to Madinah. During his last illness, the Prophet could no longer lead the prayers, he was too weak to go to the mosque, he therefore had to choose someone to fill such high position after him. Abu Bakr was also the one who was honored to be chosen by the Prophet for such a task.

Thus in the lifetime of the Prophet, Abu Bakr came to fill the highest position under Islam (leading prayers). While one day Abu Bakr was away 'Umar was appointed by the Companions to lead the prayers in his absence. Realizing the change of voice, the Prophet said, "This is not Abu Bakr's voice, no one but he should lead prayers, he is the fittest person for this position."

When the news of the Prophet's death came out, many Muslims were confused and stunned. 'Umar himself was so overcome with emotions that he drew his sword and declared, "If anyone says that the Messenger of Allah is dead, I will cut off his head."

Muslims stayed in such state until Abu Bakr arrived and gave his famous address: "O People! If anyone among you worshipped Muhammad, let him know that Muhammad is dead. But those who worshipped Allah, let them know that He lives and will never die. Let all of us recall the words of the Qur'an. It says:

Suddenly Abu Bakr's words started to sink in, and in no time confusion was gone.

Having shrugged off the shocking news of the Prophet's death, Muslims realized that they need someone to fill the position of leadership amongst them.

The two main groups amongst Muslims were Muhajirun (refugees from Makkah), and Ansar (the people of Madinah). The Ansar gathered at the Thaqifah Bani Saydah their meeting place. Sa'ad ibn Abadah, the Ansar leader, suggested that the Caliph should be from amongst them. Although many refused saying that the Muhajirun in right have a better claim to Khilafah. When the news reached Abu Bakr, he quickly went to their gathering, fearing that confusion might spread once again, and said, "Both Muhajirun and Ansar have done great service to Islam. But the former were the first to accept Islam, they were always very close to the Messenger of Allah. So, O Ansar, let the Caliph be from amongst them." After a short discussion, the Ansar agreed that they should choose the Caliph from amongst the Muhajirun, being from the tribe of Quraysh and being the first to accept Islam.

Abu Bakr then asked people to choose between 'Umar ibn al-Khattab and Abu 'Ubaydah ibn al-Jarrah. Hearing this, both men jumped to their feet and exclaimed "O Siddiq, how can that be? How can anyone else fill this position as long as you are among us? You are the top man amongst he Muhajirun. You were the Companion of the Prophet sallallahu 'alayhi wa sallam in the Thawr cave. You led prayers in his place, during his last illness. Prayer is the foremost thing in Islam. With all these qualifications you are the fittest person to be the successor of the Holy Prophet. Hold out your hand that we may pledge loyalty to you."

But Abu Bakr did not stretch out his hand. 'Umar saw that the delay might lead to the reopening of the disagreements so he himself took Abu Bakr's hand out and pledged loyalty to him. Others followed by example, and Abu Bakr became the first Caliph by general consent of the Muslims.

In the next day, Abu Bakr addressed the gathering of Muslims in the Prophet's mosque urging them to continue their path as true Muslims and to give him loyalty and support as long as he is obeying the Commands of Allah subhanahu wa ta'ala and His Messenger.

'Ali radiallahu 'anhu along with some of his relatives delayed their pledge of loyalty to Abu Bakr for six months after a difference of opinion with the Caliph due to the right of inheritance of the Prophet's land. Although both men respected each other, and 'Ali soon after the death of his wife Fatimah gave the pledge of loyalty to Abu Bakr.

Such was the quality of the humble and generous Companion who believed the Prophet in everything to the extent that he was called As-Siddiq, by the Prophet. His great personality and service to Islam and Muslims earned him the love and respect of all Muslims, so that he was chosen as the first Caliph after the death of the Prophet by all Muslims. Insha'Allah in the next issue we will talk about his qualities as a leader and his success as a Caliph.

Abu Bakr

Abu Bakr as-Siddiq (Abdullah ibn Abu Qahafa) (Arabic: عبد الله بن أبي قحافة) (Mecca, c. 573 - 634) was a friend, faithful ally, and father-in-law of the Muslim prophet Mohammed. His father's name was Uthman Abu Quhafa and his mother Salma Umm-ul-Khair. Abu Bakr had a total of six children with four women.

His birth name was Abdullah. He was named Abu Bakr (Bakr's father) after his conversion. Muhammad also gave him the nickname as-Siddiq, which means the true one.

Abu Bakr was a wealthy trader and one of the first to convert to Islam. He also played a role in the conversion of prominent Muhammad's companions, including Uthman ibn Affan, Abd al-Rahman ibn Awf, Sa`d ibn Abi Waqqas, Zubayr ibn al-Awwam, Talha ibn Ubydydullah, Abu Ubayda ibn al-Jarrah and the African slave Bilaal Ibn Rabaah', whom he had redeemed. After the emigration to Medina - the first wife of Mohammed, Khadija had died a year earlier - Abu Bakr offered his daughter Aisha to Mohammed as a wife.

According to Islamic Traditions, Abu Bakr is one of the ten people who were testified that they were destined for Paradise. Abu Bakr also belongs to the so-called' Four Right-Guided Caliphs'.

It is said that Abu Bakr and Ali passed on the esoteric doctrine that was later called tasawoef or Sufism.

The name Abū Bakr (رضي الله عنه) is actually an appellation that is usually translated as "One with whom Allah is pleased." This name has become a frequent proper name throughout the Islamic world (with variations such as Bubker, Babacar, Boubacar, Ebubekir, etc.). As-Siddīq is also an appellation that means 'The Sincere', their descendants are called siddīqī. His original first name was 'Abd al-Ka'ba, this is' Servant of the Kaaba', which changed to' Abd Al•lāh ('Servant of God') after his conversion to Islam.

Mercader in Mecca and member of the tribe of Quraysh, was the first man outside the family, the new religion preached by Muhammad (صلى الله عليه وسلم), became whom he accompanied into exile (hijrah) in Medina. He became Muhammad's father-in-law (صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ) when Muhammad married his daughter Aisha (ض الله عنهما). When the prophet fell ill, he appointed (according to the Sunnis) Abū Bakr (رضي الله عنه) to lead the prayer instead, which was interpreted to Muhammad's death (صلی الله علیه و آله و سلم) as I wish that Abū Bakr (رضي الله عنه) be his successor. So, in 632 He became the first person who bore the title of caliph, that is, of 'successor of the Messenger of God' (خليفة رسول الله jalīfat Rasūl Allāh). His choice was answered by Ali ibn Abi Tálib (رضي الله عنه) (once again, according to the Sunni version), Muhammad's cousin and son-in-law (صَلَّى اللَّهُ عَلَيْهِ وَسَلَّمَ), who claimed the succession for himself. Ali (رضی الله عنه) finally abided by the election of Abū Bakr (رضی الله عنه), but this divergence would lead years later to the division of Muslims into three branches: Sunni, Shiite and Jaariyí.

The same year of his election, tribal revolts broke out in the regions of Hiyaz and Néyed, the first rejected Islam and the second was caused by the refusal to pay the zakat tax to the caliphate. The caliph stifled both revolts, although he had to face strong oppositions, the most important of which was led by Musailma. This was finally defeated by Jálid ibn al-Walid (رضی الله عنه) in the battle of Akraba, after which the Arabian Peninsula was definitely attached to the Islamic state. Having accomplished this, Abū Bakr (رضي الله عنه) directed his generals towards the conquest of other territories:Iraq was taken from the Sassanid Empire by Jálid ibn Walid (رضی الله عنه) in a single campaign.

During his rule, the first compilation of the Quran was made, which until then was only recited by heart.

Abu Bakr (رضي الله عنه) died on August 23 of 634 in Medina. Shortly before his death, attributed by some to poisoning and by others to natural causes, he named Umar ibn al-Jattab (رضي الله عنه) a successor, an election that was ratified by the community (according to the Bakris/Sunnis), again with the opposition of Ali (رضی الله عنه) and his supporters (according to Shiites), although without any serious incident. He is buried next to Muhammad (صلی الله علیه و آله و سلم) and Omar (رضي الله عنه) in the Mosque of the Prophet of Medina.

After the death of Mohammed

After the death of Mohammed in 632, Abu Bakr was almost unanimously voted by the prominent sahaba and by some of the ansar, but in haste, the first Caliph of the Muslim community. He became Caliph on June 8, 632. In the Islamic Traditions it is known that Omar ibn al-Chattab played an important and decisive role in the appointment of Abu Bakr to Caliph and he was also the first Muslim to swear by him. However, Muhammad's cousin and son-in-law Ali were not present. Ali's supporters did not agree with the designation of Abu Bakr, who they use as usurpatorsaw, to Caliph once. They believed that the Caliph could not be elected, but that the leadership naturally passes to a member of the family of Muhammad, in this case Ali. According to them, the caliph must therefore have a direct blood relationship with Mohammed. The Sunni Muslims reject this theology and believe that faith in God and in His messenger is completely independent of family or blood ties. The appointment of Abu Bakr as a caliph is confirmed by the Sunnis by the fact that Mohammed allowed Abu Bakr to pray in the mosque when he was sick.

Abu Bakr, during his short but powerful leadership, conquered all opposition from rebellious Bedouin tribes in Arabia, thereby adding the entire Arabian Peninsula to the Caliphate. Under his leadership, the first major territories were conquered by the Muslims: Syria and Mesopotamia.

In 634, two years after the death of Mohammed, Abu Bakr ordered the collection of all Quranic verses revealed by Muhammad as a messenger. Many followers of Muhammad knew large parts of the Quran by heart and many were also written on parchment, tree bark and camel bone, but there was not yet a written standard version. Under Caliph Oethman, these collected texts were bundled together in the correct order and their copies were sent to all Islamic countries. The Quran is still authentic, that is, as revealed to Muhammad.

On his deathbed, Abu Bakr named Omar ibn al-Chattab as his successor. The Caliphate deed was recorded by Uthman ibn Affan.

Abu Bakr was called Khulafā ur Rasūlu-llah (Caliph of the Messenger) during his caliphate, while the Caliphs were named after him Amier-ul Mu'minien (Leader of the Believers).

Hadith about Abu Bakr

It has been reported within a Hadith that Mohammed ibn al-Hanafiyyah (the son of Ali ibn Abu Talib) said:

"I asked my father, Which of the people was the best after the Messenger of God (peace and blessings be upon him)?". He replied, "Abu Bakr." I asked, "Who next then Omar." I was afraid that he (then) Uthman would say, so I said, "Then are you?" he replied: "I am only one man among the Muslims." (Bukhari).

Also a Hadith is the following narrated by Jubair ibn Moet'im:

A woman came to the Prophet, he ordered her to return later. She said, "What if I come and would not you?" As if to say, "If I could find death?" The Prophet said, "If you would not find me, go to Abu Bakr." (Bukhari and Muslim)

After Muhammad's death

Islam as a political force

The political status of Islam, and the role Muhammad had given it as a political as well as a religious force, was reinforced in the military conquests.

A caliph such as Umar seems to have regarded himself, first and foremost, as the leader of the Arabs, and their monotheistic creed as the religious component of their new political identity.

Jonathan P. Berkey, The Formation of Islam: Religion and Society in the Near East, 600-1800, 2003

The conquest of Arabia

After the death of Muhammad in 632 CE, the young Muslim federation came under strain. Some of the tribes decided that as their loyalty to Islam had been primarily to Muhammad himself, his death allowed them to end their allegiance to Mecca and to Islam.

To make things more difficult, the Prophet had not left clear instructions as to who should lead the community after his death.

Fortunately the community immediately chose the Prophet's close companion and father-in-Law Abu Bakr, as his successor. Abu Bakr was known as the first caliph (from khalifa, the Arabic for successor).

Abu Bakr took swift military action against the communities that wanted to break away. These campaigns, known as the apostasy or ridda wars, effectively consolidated Arabia into a single country under Muslim control within two years.

Expansion in the Middle East

Abu Bakr died in 634 and was succeeded by Umar ibn al-Khattab, the second caliph, who ruled until 644. Umar found himself the ruler of a large unified state, with an organised army, and he used this as a tool to spread Islam further in the Middle East.

Umar's early campaigns were against the Byzantine Empire. Following the decisive Battle of Yarmouk in 636, the former Byzantine states of Syria, Palestine, and Lebanon were conquered by the Muslim armies.

Shortly afterwards the Muslim army attacked the Sassanid Empire in Iraq, gaining a massive victory in 637 at the Battle of Qadasiya, and gradually conquering more and more of Iraq over the next dozen years.

This conquest was made much easier by the weakness of the Sassanid Empire, which was wounded by internal conflicts and a lengthy war with the Byzantine Empire.

Within a few years the Muslims had also conquered parts of Egypt to the South and Anatolia and Armenia to the North.

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Christians and Muslims discuss the different traditions of mission, conversion and the expansion of religions worldwide. Does one religion have the monopoly on truth?