It was a few years after the 57th Hijri. In the streets of Medinah, walked slowly the last remaining Sahaabi (companion) of Rasulullah SAW. Having reached old age and not able to see any more, he was assisted by an escort. Foreseeing his longevity, Rasulullah SAW had entrusted him with a message, it was now time to deliver it. He was in search of the house of Imam Ali Zain-ul-Abedeen SA, when he heard a maid call out the name “Mohammed.” On enquiry, he discovered that the maid was indeed referring to Imam Mohammed-ul-Baqir SA, who at that time was an infant. Jabir-bin-Abdullah-Alansari entered the house and conveyed to Imam Mohammed-ul-Baqir SA Rasulullah’s SAW salaam and message instructing him to unearth knowledge.
Imam Mohammed-ul-Baqir SA was a prodigious scholar; even today he is considered as the most reliable source of knowledge. As Rasulullah SAW had predicated, he was bestowed with noor (illumination) and rehmat (mercy). Following the ordinance of his grandfather, he burst forth with the spread of knowledge in an unprecedented way. He was assisted in this endeavor by the relaxed political climate caused by the decaying of the Umayyad dynasty. Their days were numbered and the remaining Umayyeds were engrossed in sinful indulgence.
Imam Mohammed-ul-Baqir’s SA noor was such that nothing remained hidden from him. It is said that Jabir-ul-Jaafi once saw Rasulullah SAW in his dreams. Rasulullah SAW gave him a handful of dates. He counted twenty. Next morning, Jabir approached Imam Mohammed-ul-Baqir SA and saw that a plate containing dates was placed in front of him. Imam SA took a handful of dates and handed them to Jabir. Jabir counted twenty dates. Jabir implored the Imam SA to give him more. The Imam SA replied that had his grandfather given him more, he would have done so too.
Imam Mohammed-ul-Baqir’s SA rehmat (mercy) knew no bounds. Once when his small child fell from the maid’s hands and died, Imam SA accepted Allah’s fate by absolving the maid and expressing these words, “All thanks to Allah for what he gave and what he took back.” Immediately he ordered the terrified maid to be freed.
During his era, convoy after convoy of Shia journeyed to his hazrat to seek his blessings and wisdom. Imam SA showered upon them pearls of dua, wisdom and advice, urging them to be truthful, faithful and forbearing.