Islamic History Podcast 1-8: Three Queens Part III | Bilquis

Islamic History Podcast 1-8: Three Queens Part III | Bilquis

  • Queen and ruler of Sheba during period of Prophet Sulaiman’s rule of Israel 970 BC
  • Sheba is in modern day Yemen and the horn of Africa Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, Sudan
  • During ancient times, Sheba was a rich and powerful nation with amazing water irrigation technology
  • Yemen was also a popular trading port which connected Asia to Africa and the Middle East.
  • Sheba became wealthy due to frankinsense which is only in this area
  • Bilqis is mentioned in her dealings with Sulaiman in Surah Naml
  • Sulaiman was reviewing soldiers when he noticed hoopoe bird missing.
  • Bird returned to report on a land (Sheba) ruled by a woman
  • Queen Bilqis had all worldy needs and a magnificent throne, but she and her people worshiped the sun
  • Sulaiman sent the hoopoe back to Bilqis with a message inviting her to faith
  • She consulted with her ministers who said they would fight if asked but the decision was hers.
  • She instead decided to send Sulaiman a gift.
  • This as an example of her wisdom: She wanted to avoid war and also wanted to prove Sulaiman’s legitimacy
  • If he was just a king, he would accept the gift and perhaps impose tribute on Sheba, in which case they may choose to fight back.
  • But if he rejected the gift, it meant he was more than a king and it would be best to make peace with him.
  • He sent messengers back to her rejecting the gift and she decided to meet with him.
  • Instead Sulaiman had one of his religious men teleport her throne to Jerusalem.
  • Then Sulaiman had it altered slightly to test her wisdom and knowledge.
  • When she arrived, he showed it to her and she thought is was a replica.
  • When she entered his palace there was a glass for under which was water and she thought it was a pool of sorts
  • That was when she was convinced of Tawheed and she accepted Islam.
  • Most say she married Sulaiman then returned to Sheba.
  • Ethiopian legend says she had a son for him named Menelech whose descendents ruled Ethiopia up to the 20th century.
  • If true, the Negus of Prophet Muhammad’s time was a descendent of Bilqis and Solomon
  • Not sure if they followed her religion immediately but Sheba was blessed with abundant agriculture and water
  • Had a great dam that was twice as large as the Hoover Dam.
  • It collected water from the mountains then channeled it into canals that spread throughout the city.
  • They were warned to worship Allah but ultimately disbelieved and Allah punished them.
  • Two things brought about their downfall. First, trade shifted away from Yemen so they lost that income
  • Second, the dam burst and the land was flooded. Their crops were destroyed and irrigation tech was useless.

YouTube video about Sheba and Queen Bilquis

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