From the fourth year of the prophethood onwards, our Prophet (saw) openly began inviting the people of Mecca to embrace Islam. The period of the secret invitation came to an end with the revelation of the verse, “O Muhammad! Then declare what you are commanded and turn away from the polytheists.” (Hijr, 15:94). Prophet Muhammad initiated the open invitation by first focusing on his close relatives, in accordance with the verse, “And warn, (O Muhammad), your closest kindred.” (Shu’ara, 26:214) To fulfill this command, he arranged a feast for his relatives, consisting of about 40-50 people.

Following the feast, the Prophet invited them to Islam through a speech. However, his uncle Abu Lahab interrupted his speech, expressing disdain, and said, “I have never seen anyone bring anything worse to his tribe than what you have.” Upon hearing these words, the gathering dispersed, and our Prophet, who was distressed about the event, held another meeting a few days later and gave them a speech again. In this speech, after declaring that Allah is one, that He is inimitable, and that the Prophet believes and trusts in Him, he assured his guests that he would never deceive or lie to them. With these introductory remarks, the Prophet continued his speech with the following words: “I am a Messenger whom He has sent to you and all people. I swear by Allah that you will die just as you fall asleep, and you will be raised just as you wake up from sleep. You will be held accountable for your actions, and you will be rewarded or punished accordingly for your good and bad deeds. Both paradise and hell are everlasting. You are the first to whom I deliver this warning.”

Abu Talib, the Prophet’s uncle, expressed his admiration for these words and pledged his support to the Prophet as long as he would live. However, he mentioned his inability to abandon his ancestral religion. On the other hand, his other uncle, Abu Lahab, remained firm in his opposition to the Prophet. So our Prophet (saw) made the decision to openly invite the entire city of Mecca to Islam. Shortly after, our Prophet (saw) ascended to the top of the hill of al-Safa in order to extend the invitation further. From there, he called out to the people of Mecca, saying, “O people of Quraysh! Would you believe me if I said to you that behind this hill there is an enemy army?”