In this article we will try to distinguish between Abu Lahab and Abu Jahl, the two men who were worst enemies of Islam and Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). They showed the highest level of brutality, hostility and enemity towards the religion and messenger of Allah.
Who was Abu-Lahab and what was his relation to Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him)?
Abu-Lahab was direct paternal uncle of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him). He was the brother of Prophet Father. They belonged to the same father but their mothers were not same. His real name was ʾAbdul-ʾUzzā bin ʾAbdul-Muṭṭalib. His people (before Islam) called him Abū ʾUtbah, as ʾUtbah was his first son’s name. He was also called “Abū Lahab” (the father of flame) for his reddish complexion and hot, fiery temper.
Who was Abu-Jahl and what was his relation to the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him).
Abu Jahal was the cousin to the father of prophet Muhammad(peace be upon him). He was therefore his indirect paternal uncle.
His real name was ʾAmr Ibn Hishām. He used to be known as Abū al-Ḥakam (father of wisdom) until the Prophet ṣallā Allāhu ʾalaihi wa sallam replaced that with Abū Jahl (father of ignorance) for him. He was called so because he was intelligent, eloquent and wise. He was very influential across the city. It was because of his status tha prophet Muhammad(peace be upon him0 used to pray to Allah to make one of the Omars as Muslim, Omar- ibn –Khattab and Amr ibn Hisham. Omar ibs khattab happened to be the lucky guy and accepted islam. Amr ibn hisham on the other hand was titled Abu Jahl because of his ignorance towards Islam.
Who between the Two Got Mentioned in the Qur’an?
Abu Lahab was mentioned in Quran. The whole surah was dedicated (against) to him and his wife umm Jamil. It was because he was more daring and carried out open attacks on Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) than anyone else. Despite being the influential he used to be, Abū Jahl didn’t get mentioned (by name) in the Qurʿān, not even for the bad reason. Perhaps, this was because he was more a foxlike and would conspire the attacks against the Prophet, rather than carry them out personally.
A like of this man is the head of the hypocrites in Madīnah, ʾAbdullāh ibn Ubay ibn Salūl. He had a hand in every major conspiracy that transpired in Madīnah, but he left no physical race in all that. Such was the life of Abū Jahl. However, the last 10 verses of Sūrah al-ʾAlaq all refer to Abī Jahl. Their Honest Opinions About the Qur’an and the Prophet The hated Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him ) but knew and acknowledged that the prophet Muhammad 9peace be upon him) was the man of Honesty and trustworthiness. From this we understand that both the men were not against Islam because they found any bad in the conduct of moral of Prophet (peace be upon him) rather in the fact that the message was not revealed to or through them Had the message been revealed to them or to their sons, they would have accepted it.
They were jealous and waged a war against Islam and called out to people to reject the message of Muhammad(peace be upon him) the did everything to falsify his message. In other words, if Muhammad was a direct son to Abū Lahab or Abū Jahl, he would have not been treated the way they did. Unfortunately, because Allāh did what He willed, they staged unbearable evil against him, even more than outsiders could do. Abu Lahab ordered two of his sons, ʾUtbah, and ʾUtaibah, who were marrying two daughters of the Prophet, ṣallā Allāhu ʾalaihi wa sallam, to divorce them. This action was one of those that had great emotional impact on the Prophet, the Father. But later 3 of his 7 children, ʾUtbah (son), Muʾtab (son) and Durah (daughter), embraced Islam.
Abu-Lahab’s wife Umm Jamil used to carry thorns and wood pieces and scatter them on the way prophet (peace be upon him ) was likely to take. This type of work was only meant for slaves, the fact that she herself did this signify her hatred towards the Prophet(peace be upon him). The hatred and enmity this lady developed towards the Prophet didn’t stop her to disregard her pride in her high rank and do that. In the process of doing that, Ummu Jamīl took the delight in putting the rope of twisted palm fibre around her neck with which she carried thorns and wood on her back to use against the Prophet. As a reward, she shall be worn with a rope of twisted fibre around her neck, in the hellfire.
Abu jahl used to admire Quran because it matched his high taste of Arabic eloquence to such extent that despite the fact that he staged enemity to Prophet, he used to come undercover to listen to it. Two of his children, Ikrimah (son) and Juwairiyyah (daueghter) accepted Islam. And Allah knows best.