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Another Reason for the Delay in the Appearance of the Mahdi

Another reason mentioned in the traditions is reported in a hadith from Imam Sadiq in which the Imam said:

In the loins of disbelievers and hypocrites God has deposited a seed for believing persons. It was for this reason that Imam 'Ali b. Abi Talib refrained from killing the fathers of disbelievers so that believing children could be born of them. After that whenever he met them he would endeavor to kill them. Similarly, our Qa'im will not rise until God's trust from the loins of the disbelievers has been delivered. After that he will appear and will eliminate disbelievers.1

The program that will be followed by the twelfth Imam is that he will offer the religion of Islam to the non-believers. Anyone who accepts that call will be saved from being killed. All those who refuse to accept Islam will be killed. On the other hand, we know that history is replete with cases of believing children born of non-believing and hypocritical parents. Was it not the case of the early Muslims who were born of non-believing parents in the pre-Islamic age? If the Prophet had killed all the non-believers during the conquest of Mecca, the Muslims then born of their generation would never have come into existence. God's grace and benevolence necessitates that human beings should be left alone to their beliefs so that in time those believers among their children will be born. It is necessary that the earth should produce believing humans, in accordance with its potential and capability, and that God grants them life. As long as a human being procreates and brings forth a believer and worshipper of God, he or she should remain on earth. This situation will continue until people's understanding becomes receptive to God's unity and worship. At that time the Imam of the Age (peace be upon him) will appear. A large number of disbelievers will accept faith at his hands. Those who persist in their disbelief in those circumstances will be the people from whom there will be no believing offspring.
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1 Ithbat al-hudat, Vol. 7, p. 105.

Adopted from the book : "Al-Imam al-Mahdi (a.s.); the Just Leader of Humanity" by : "Ayatullah Ibrahim Amini"

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