28 September 2006

History of Job's Tomb

Prophet Job's (Ayaub) Tomb

About this location: The tomb of Nabi Ayoub (o
r Job) is around 40 kilometres from Salalah on Jebal Ittin. There is a mosque and tomb where the remains of the Prophet, quite possibly Job from the Old Testament, are located.

There is a small garden to walk through to get to the tomb which is housed in a small building. Immediately next to the tomb are the walls of a small room used for prayer. The appearance is much like a mosque however the date of the life of the Prophet is pre-Islam. One section of the wall faces Jerusalem which is the direction the Prophet would face for prayer. Though his life is also pre-Judaism, even at that time he believed in the Oneness of God.

The story of Nabi Ayoub : the Prophet is from Syria and had two wives. He had become very sick and the illness spanned over 15 years. During that time the exterior of his body became infested with worms. Nabi Ayoub believed that his flesh was the food for these creatures of God and to show his devotion to God, he allowed the worms to eat of his flesh. If a worm would fall off, he would pick it back up and put it back on his flesh.
The sickness repulsed the people of Syria to the extent that he had to leave the area. Only one of his two wives chose to travel with him. The one who remained behind was as repulsed by his sickness and belief as were others who drove him away. The wife who remained with him was seemingly very supportive and accepting of his devotion to God. They left Syria and travelled to the mountain top where his remains now lie.
As stated, his sickness lasted over 15 years and at some point the worms began to eat inside his mouth. It was at this point that Nabi Ayoub realized his breaking point and finally asked God for mercy. In response to this request, aware of the years of devotion and hardship, it is believed that God instructed Nabi Ayoub to step out from his house and place his foot in a particular spot. When doing so a small hole in the ground opened up and from within the ground an outpouring of water occurred right next to his foot. God then instructed him to drink this water and upon doing so, he was not only cured of his sickness but his body, then at least 250 years old, was restored to the health of an 18 year old young man.
Nabi Ayoub would then live until the age of 92 when he finally died and was put to rest in the very spot he dwelled all these years after his departure from Syria. Until now, Nabi Ayoub's body remains in the same spot.
Just outside the entrance to the tomb is a small metal door on the ground. When opened you will find a footprint which has turned to stone. Measurements of the footprint we do not know but suffice it to say, it is quite large. This very footprint is believed to be the mark left on the ground when God instructed Nabi Ayoub to press his foot down. Just to the left of the footprint is a small hole in the ground where it is believed that the curing waters flowed from which he drank.

(Between the print of Nabi Ayoub's right foot and the water hole is also a print from a horse though a story about why the hoof print is there was not revealed. Perhaps upon your visit to the burial sight you could inquire yourself)

The water no longer flows from this hole next to the footprint. It is dry. Until now, however, the water source which fed this hole upon God's command is located 1 kilometer down the mountain and there are no visible water trails that lead to the top. Seemingly, the water flowed up hill and inside the mountain to the very spot where Nabi Ayoub pressed his foot.

When you view the grave itself you will immediately notice it's largeness. It is approximately 13 feet long or nearly 4 metres and over 1 1/2 meters wide. And yes, his body was indeed this large as you will witness when you view the footprint.
We asked the narrarator on our visit about the reality of the body of the Prophet being as large as his grave appears and were told that it has been written that all those thousands of years ago people were large enough that they could easily reach out to a palm tree and eat of its fruits. Given the size of the footprint, the size could not be disputed!

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