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Chapter 2

The Categories of the Prophets, the Messengers and the Imams (a.s.)

H 417, Ch. 2, h 1

Muhammad ibn Yahya has narrated from Ahmad ibn Muhammad from abu Yahya al-Wasiti from Hisham ibn Salim and Durust ibn abu Mansur from him the following.
"Abu ‘Abdallah (a.s.) has said that the prophets and the messengers are of four categories. There were prophets who were given Divine news in their souls just for their own-selves and for no one else. There were also prophets who were given Divine news in their dreams and would hear the voice but would not see anyone when awake and they were not sent to other people with such news. They had to follow and Imam just as it happened with Lot who followed Abraham.. There were prophets who would experience in their dreams, hear the voice and see the angel and were sent to a group of people small or large like Jonas (we sent him to a hundred thousand people or a few more). The Imam said that there were thirty thousand more people lead by an Imam. Those who saw in their dreams heard the voice and saw the angel when awake and were also Imams like ’Ulul ‘Azm ones, such as Abraham were prophets but not Imams until Allah said, "I want to appoint you as the Imam for people." He said, "Also please from my descendents, to which He said, ‘My covenant does not go to the unjust ones, those who have worshipped idols or statues will not become Imams."

H 418, Ch. 2, h 2

Muhammad ibn al-Hassan has narrated those whom he mentioned from Muhammad ibn Khalid from Muhammad ibn Sinan from Zayd al-Shahham who has said the following.
"I heard Imam abu ‘Abdallah saying, ‘Allah chose Abraham as a servant before choosing him as a prophet. Allah chose him as a prophet before choosing him as a messenger. Allah chose him as a messenger before choosing him as a friend of His. Allah chose him as a friend of His before choosing him as an Imam. When all of the above things were gathered in Abraham, Allah said, "I have certainly appointed you as the Imam for the people." Because to Abraham it was so great he asked, "Can this (Imamat, leadership) be in my descendents also?" Allah said, "The feeble-minded can become the leaders of the pious ones."

H 419, Ch. 2, h 3

A number of our people has narrated from Ahmad ibn Muhammad ibn Muhammad ibn Yahya al-Khath‘ami from Hisham from abu Ya‘qub who has said the following "I heard abu ‘Abdallah saying, ‘The leaders and masters of the prophets and the messengers are five who are called ’ulul ‘Azm (people with determination) among the messengers who have the central role. They are Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jesus and Muhammad (s.a.)."

H 420, Ch. 2, h 4

Ali ibn Muhammad has narrated from Sahl ibn Ziyad from Muhammad ibn al-Hassan from Ishaq ibn ‘Abd al-‘Aziz from abu al-Saffah from Jabir from abu Ja‘far (a.s.) has said the following.
"I heard the Imam saying, ‘Allah chose Abraham as a servant before He chose him as a prophet. He chose him as a prophet before He chose him as a messenger. He chose him as a messenger before He chose him as a friend of His. He chose him as a friend of His before He chose him as an Imam. When all of these things gathered in him (the Imam holding his hands said, "Allah said, ‘O Ibrahim I have appointed you as the Imam (leader) of the people." Because of the greatness of the position Abraham them asked, "O Lord, can it be in my descendants also?" The Lord said, ‘My covenant does not go to the unjust ones."

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