Prophet Shuaib(as) is also known as Jethro in Biblical literature, Prophet Shuaib(as) was sent as a prophet by ALLAH SWT to guide the people of Madyan toward a righteous path. Shuaib, meaning “the one who shows the right path” was an excellent preacher and proclaimed the teaching of Islam to the people of Madyan and told everyone to believe in one ALLAH leaving all their fraudulent habits. ALLAH SWT mentioned Shoaib(as) in Quran as:
“And to Madyan (We sent) their brother Shu’aib. He said: O my people! Serve Allah, you have no god other than Him; clear proof indeed has come to you from your Lord, therefore give full measure and weight and do not diminish to men their things, and do not make mischief in the land after its reform; this is better for you if you are believer”(Al-Quran7:85)
Prophet Shuaib(as) and People of Madyan
Madyan town that is located in Jordan now was full of disbelievers and robbers. People of Madyan used to pray a large tree (Al-Aykah) and were dishonest, did cheatings with customers in buying and selling, considered incorrect scales, collected huge taxes, and did everything that is forbidden in Islam. Prophet Shuaib (as) tried to convince and preach to them for a long time in the best possible ways to prohibit piracy, shirk, reducing dose and scales but people refused to listen to him and continued their dishonesty and disbelief. Prophet Shoaib(as) remained calm and steadfast making them realize the commandments of ALLAH SWT and HIS favors and graciousness. He forbade people saying “And do not lie in ambush by every path [of life] seeking to overawe or to hinder from the path of Allah those who believe, nor seek to make the path crooked. Remember, how you were once few, and then He multiplied you, and keep in mind what was the end of mischief-makers”. (Surah-Al-Araf:86)
Shuaib(as) continuously preached them and guided them towards and remained steadfast on his mission for the sake of ALLAH SWT with patience but only a few believed in him, while most of the people from Madyan refused to listen to him and led their life with robbery, injustice, and shirk. And some of the arrogant people used to reply Shoaib(as): “O Shu’aib! We will certainly expel you and your fellow believers from our land unless you return to our faith.”(Al-Quran 7:88)
Prophet Shuaib(as) told them “And if there are some among you who believe in the message that I bear while some do not believe, have patience till Allah shall judge between us. He is the best of those who judge”(7:87Al-Quran ).
Prophet Shuaib(as) has been firmly spreadings the teachings of Islam to the disbelievers but every time they had something to argue and refuse his teachings. They used to tell Shuaib(as): “O Shu’ayb! Does your Prayer enjoin upon you that we should forsake the deities whom our forefathers worshipped, or that we should give up using our wealth as we please? Do you fancy that you, and only you, are forbearing and right-directed?”(Al-Quran 11:87)
To this Prophet Shuaib(as) replied: “My people! What do you think? If I stand on clear evidence from my Lord, and He has also provided me a handsome provision from Himself (should I be ungrateful to Him and share your error and iniquity?) Nor do I desire to act contrary to what I admonish you. I desire nothing but to set things right as far as I can. My succor is only with Allah. In Him have I put my trust, and to Him do I always turn”. (Al-Quran 11:88)
Prophet Shuaib(as) explained to the people of Madyan and said:
“I am a trustworthy Messenger to you.” (Al-Quran 26:178)
“So fear ALLAH and obey me.”(Al-Quran26:179)
“I ask of you no reward for this. My reward is with none but the Lord of the Universe.” (Al-Quran 26:180)
“and do not deliver short, and do not go about creating mischief in the land” (Al-Quran 26:181)
Allah (swt) Punished People of Madyan
Despite all his teachings and preachings the people of Madyan remained ignorant and continued their practice except for a few of them who followed what Shuaib(as) told them. They took every belonging of Prophet Shoaib(as) and other righteous people that followed the Prophet(as) and sent them out of the city. Prophet Shoaib(as) then sought help from ALLAH SWT and ALLAH SWT granted him help immediately. ALLAH SWT punished the people of Madyan for their ignorance and disbelief towards him Prophet and exposed them to burning hot sun for several days until they were exhausted and it was unbearable for them. They all tried to cool down by pouring water over them but all vain. It was the decree of ALLAH SWT and they had to face it for their disobedience. They all ran here and there for escape when they saw a dark cloud gathering and thought of relief thinking it’s going to rain but the cloud burst and the earth under their feet trembling and they could not bear the thundering sound and heat. The thunderbolts fire fell over them, burning them dead altogether. Indeed they witnessed what they deserved and ALLAH knows best.
ALLAH SWT said: “The dwellers of Al Aiyka (near Midian, or Madyan) belied the Messengers. When Shu’aib said to them: ‘Will you not fear Allah and obey Him? I am a trustworthy Messenger to you. SO fear Allah, keep your duty to Him, and obey me. No reward do I ask of you for it (my Message of Islamic Monotheism), my reward is only from the Lord of the Alamin (mankind, jinn, and all that exists). Give full measure, and cause no loss to others. And weigh with the true and straight balance. Defraud not people by reducing their things nor do evil making corruption and mischief in the land. Fear Him Who created you and the generations of the men of old.‘”
They said: “You are only one of those bewitched! You are but a human being like us and verily, we think that you are one of the liars! So cause a piece of heaven to fall on us if you are of the truthful!“
He said: “My Lord is the Best Knower of what you do.“
But, they belied him, so the torment of the day of shadow (a gloomy cloud) seized them, indeed that was the torment of a Great Day. Verily, this is a sign yet most of them are not believers. And verily! Your Lord, He is indeed the All-Mighty, the Most Merciful.” (Ch 26:176-191 Quran).