A Prayer of Jesus

Written by | Christianity, World Religions

Every year Muslims all over the world celebrate the end of Ramadan and memorialize the sacrifice of Abraham by celebrating the pilgrimage to Mecca about two months later. These two celebrations are known among Muslims variously as Eid or ‘Id, an Arabic word for a day that returns. As these two festivals return every year, they are known as Eids.

The word Eid occurs only once in the Holy Quran. It occurs not in relation to the celebration of these two festivals but in context of a prayer of Jesus that is related in chapter 5, verses 113-116:

“When the disciples said, ‘O Jesus, son of Mary, is thy Lord able to send down to us a table spread with food from heaven?’ he said, ‘Fear Allah, if you are believers.’

They said, ‘We desire that we may eat of it, and that our hearts be at rest and that we may know that thou hast spoken truth to us, and that we may be witnesses thereto.’

Said Jesus, son of Mary, ‘O Allah, our Lord, send down to us a table from heaven spread with food that it may be to us a festival (Eid), to the first of us and to the last of us, and a Sign from Thee; and provide sustenance for us, for Thou art the Best of sustainers.’

Allah said, ‘Surely, I will send it down to you, but whosoever of you disbelieves afterwards—I will surely punish them with a punishment wherewith I will not punish any other of the peoples.’”

It is evident from these verses that Jesus, may peace be upon him, prayed and God responded to his prayer and promised him that during the earlier days of Christianity and during the latter days, his people will be bestowed food bountifully making it a festival worth celebration. Followers of Jesus enjoyed this bounty during the time of its free spread during its earlier period and then now in latter days.

When we visit a local grocery store in the West, we see fruits and vegetables from all over the world beautifully displayed in large quantities reminding this verse of the Holy Quran how a prayer offered two thousand years ago is being fulfilled in our times. The fulfillment of the prophecy required that the west- ern nations invent ways to improve the quality of crops and their yield to make them available plentifully, that they invent

ways to store them like fresh over long periods so that they can be able to transport them fresh from far off places. Then it was necessary that transportation methods and vehicles are invented that could haul large quantities quickly to all parts of the world. Knowledge in agriculture had to be advanced to produce varieties that can withstand rigors of weather, envi- ronment and disease attacks. It is amazing how many inven- tions came together to fulfill this prayer that could not be easily imagined two thousand years ago except for a promise given to Jesus by his Master.

The Holy Quran mentioned this prayer and its acceptance when the second period of its fulfillment was still to come hundreds of years in advance. Seeing this manifest fulfillment of a prayer before our eyes, can we still be doubtful of the acceptance of prayers?

The fulfillment of this prayer shows us the need for continuous human effort to bring means together for the acceptance of a prayer. The human effort necessary to fulfill a prayer or a prophecy sometimes takes place under our own cognizance and we make all possible efforts for the fulfillment of a prayer. Sometimes the efforts necessary to fulfill a prayer or prophecy are forced upon us under the current of heavenly winds blowing towards the destined end.

Last modified: December 2021

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