The tides of events, sometimes, foretell about the future developments in history. These prophecies get special importance if they are from the source of revelation. In such cases, we ought to receive such implications, and after pondering over them, we have to acknowledge them, and prepare for their occurrence. The appointment (Mab?ath) of the prophet (PBUH&HP) was among the subjects which were foretold from long before.
The Holy Quran explicitly states that ?the People of the Book read about him and his traits, and they are aware that their prophets have elucidated the appearance of such leader (1).
Therefore, the Jewish scholars, the Christian priests, and Arab geomancers knew about the emergence of the Prophet (PBUH&HP) from the clues in the Testaments.
Based on these prophecies, when the messenger of Allah (PBUH&HP), in the 7th A.H., wrote invitation letters to the powerful governors of the world, Cesar (ruler of Rome) showed a remarkable reaction, the story of which follows:
When the letter-carrier submitted the letter to Cesar (ruler of Rome), the wise king considered it possible that the letter was sent by the promised Mohammad in the Book. Therefore he ordered that detailed information about his life be gathered, and he ordered his relatives or people who knew to him to be brought to him in person.
By coincidence, at that time, Abu Sufyan and some businessmen from Quraysh were in Syria (Shaam) for trade. Although, due to his position, Abu Sufyan was a serious enemy of Islam, he knew the messenger of Allah (PBUH&HP) and hic characteristics very well. Therefore, Cesar?s agent reached them, and took them all to the palace of the king in Jerusalem.
The king ordered Abu-Sufyan to stand before him and answer his questions carefully, and the rest to stand behind him and follow his answers carefully, so that in case Abu-Sufyan lied, they would tip-off to the king. In that manner, the king started his questions, and Abu-Sufyan answered as follows:
Cesar: ?How is the lineage of Mohammad??
Abu Sufyan: ?He is from a noble family.?
Cesar: ?Has any of his fathers ruled people??
Abu Sufyan: ?No.?
Cesar: ?Did he use to avoid lying before his appointment or not??
Abu Sufyan: ?He was an honest person.?
Cesar: ?What classes of people mostly support him and accept his religion??
Abu Sufyan: ?The people of higher class are against him, and people of middle class and lower class support him.?
Cesar: ?Are his supporters increasing??
Abu Sufyan: ?Yes.?
Cesar: ?Is he victorious in wars with his enemies or is he defeated??
Abu Sufyan: ?Sometimes victorious and sometimes defeated.?
At this point, Cesar told his translator: ?Tell them, if what they say is right, he is definitely the Prophet of the end of time. I respect him, and honor him.?
Then, one of his courtiers tried tactfulness and said: ?In the letter, Mohammad has had his name prior to you.? Cesar replied angrily: ?The person who is attented by angel Gabriel surely deserves to have his name prior to mine.?
Then, Cesar replied the letter and wrote, ?I read your letter, and learned about your invitation. I knew a prophet was going to ride; however, I thought that he would ride from Syria (2).?
(Selection taken from, ?The Great Mystery of Appointment? by Ayatullah Jafar Subhani)
We congratulate you upon 27th Rajab, the day of appointment of the prophet of love and grace,
Prophet Muhammad Al-Mustafa (PBUH&HP)
Roshd Islamic Shia Website
1) The Holy Quran (2,146) - (7,157) - and (61,6) relate to this matter.
2) Tabary History, vol. 2, p. 290.