Prophet's Tribe, Ahlal Bayt (Family) & Righteous Successors
Originally written on September 9, 2019 on Quora - Why is Abu Bakr called Siddiq?
After hearing the unbelievable experience of Prophet’s Isra Wa’al Mir’aj (night journey & ascension), many pagans of Quraysh increased in their disbelief. In fact they also took this as an opportunity to persuade some of the Prophet’s followers to disbelief. Unfortunately they succeeded in creating doubts in hearts of such of his followers who had weak faith. These weakhearted ones also began to think that the Prophet ﷺ was exaggerating. On the other hand majority of the Prophet's followers who were convinced in the message of Islam became stronger in their faith. This was a test that Allah ﷻ tested the believers with and separated the truthful ones from those who were in doubt. He reminds us about the test: (Al Quran 17:60) “We appointed not the vision (during night journey and ascension) which we showed you but as a test for mankind.” Allah ﷻ says that He tests because: (Al Quran 29:03) "most certainly will God mark out those who prove themselves true (sadaqu), and most certainly will He mark out those who are lying."
Abu Bakr (r.a) was the foremost among those who bore witness to the Prophet’s description of his journey and passed this test with the highest marks among all listeners when he said “As for me I bear witness that he spoke the truth (ana ashhadu annahu sadiqun).” As-Siddiq means "the one who bears witness to the truth" and this title was given to him when he bore witness to an unbelievable experience. The following incident recorded expresses three types of reactions shared by the audience after hearing the Prophet’s experience:
Abu Jahl, the Prophet’s enemy, said: “Tell your people what you just told me.” Allah’s Messenger ﷺ said: “I was enraptured last night.” They said: “To where?” The Prophet ﷺ replied: “To the Hallowed House.” They said: “Then you woke up here among us?” He replied: “Yes.” There was no one left except he clapped his hands, or held his head in amazement, or clamored and considered it an enormity. Al-Mutim ibn Adi (he died a disbeliever) said: “All of your affair before today was bearable, until what you said today. I bear witness that you are a liar (ana ashhadu annaka kadhibun). We strike the flanks of the she-camels for one month to reach the Hallowed House, then for another month to come back, and you claim that you went there in one night! By al-Lat, by al-Uzza (idols worshiped by pagans)! I do not believe you.” Abu Bakr (r.a) said: “O Mutim, what an evil thing you said to the son of your brother when you faced him thus and declared him a liar! As for me I bear witness that he spoke the truth (ana ashhadu annahu sadiqun).” The people said: “O Muhammad, describe the Hallowed House for us. How is it built, what does it look like, how near is it to the mountain.” There were some among them who had traveled there. He began to describe it for them: “Its structure is like this, its appearance like this, its proximity to the mountain is such-and-such,” and he did not stop describing it to them until he began to have doubt about the description. He was seized with an anxiety he had not felt before (was shown a vision), whereupon he was immediately brought to the mosque itself (in Jerusalem) and saw it in front of him. He was placed outside the gate of Aqil or Iqal. The people said: “How many gates does the mosque have?” He had not counted them before. He looked at the gates and began to count them one by one and to inform them. All the while Abu Bakr (r.a) was saying: “You have spoken the truth. You have spoken the truth. I bear witness that you are the Messenger of Allah (sadaqta sadaqta ashhadu annaka rasulullah).” The people said: “As for the description, then, by Allah, he is correct.” They turned to Abu Bakr (r.a) and said: “But do you believe what he said, that he went last night to the Hallowed House and came back before morning?” He replied: “Yes, and I do believe him regarding what is farther than that. I believe the news of heaven he brings, whether in the space of a morning or in that of an evening journey (na`am inni la usaddiquhu fima huwa ab`adu min dhalika usaddiqu bi khabari al-sama’i fi ghudwatin aw rawhatin).”
Because of this Abu Bakr (r.a) was named al-Siddiq: the Most Truthful, Loyal, the One Who Never Lies, Devoted. Hence his support of the Prophet ﷺ from early Islam gave him this title and he carried all these characteristics.
The Night Journey & Ascension - When Allah ﷻ Tested the Believers & the Disbelievers