16- tai’ delegation: one of that group of delegates who came to meet the prophet [pbuh] was zaid al-khail. they talked to the prophet [pbuh] who urged them to embrace islam. they agreed and grew good muslims. about zaid, the messenger of allâh [pbuh] said: "the arabs are never exact at estimating people. they have never told me about the virtues of a man correctly; for when i see the man concerned i realize that they have overestimated him except zaid al-khail, when i met him i knew that they had underestimated him." then he named him ‘zaid al-khair’ (i.e. zaid, the bounteous).
the delegations arrived successively in madinah during the ninth and tenth of al-hijra. biographers and invasion-writers have written down about some of yemen delegations. they were al-azd; bani sa‘d hadheem from quda‘ah, bani ‘amir bin qais; bani asad, bahra’, khaulan, muharib, bani al-harith bin ka‘b, ghamid, bani al-muntafiq, salaman, bani ‘abs, muzainah, murad, zabid, kinda, dhi murrah, ghassan, bani ‘aish, and nakh‘ which were the last group of delegates. nakh‘ delegation comprised two hundred men and they arrived in the middle of muharram in the eleventh year of al-hijra. the majority of these groups of delegates arrived during the ninth and tenth years of al-hijra. the arrival of some of them tarried till the eleventh year of al-hijra.
the succession of these delegations indicated the great degree of the entire acceptance which the islamic call reached. it manifested its influence and domination on vast areas of arabia . the arabs observed al-madinah with such a great respect and estimation that they could do nothing but surrender and submit to it. al-madinah had become the headquarters of all arabia; so it was impossible to avoid it. we dare not say that all the arabians were possessed and enchanted by this religion. there were lots of hard-hearted bedouins — among the arabs — who surrendered (i.e. became muslims) only because their master did so. their souls were not sanctified yet. their tendency to raids had been deeply rooted in their souls. the teachings of islam had not crystallized their souls well yet. accounting some of them the qur’ân says:
"the bedouins are the worst in disbelief and hypocrisy, and more likely to be in ignorance of the limits (allâh’s commandments and his legal laws, etc.) which allâh has revealed to his messenger. and allâh is all-knower, all-wise. and of the bedouins there are some who look upon what they spend (in allâh’s cause) as a fine and watch for calamities for you, on them be the calamity of evil. and allâh is all-hearer, all-knower." [al-qur'an 9:97,98]
the qur’ân praised others saying:
"and of the bedouins there are some who believe in allâh and the last day, and look upon what they spend in allâh’s cause as approaches to allâh, and a cause of receiving the messenger’s invocations. indeed these are an approach for them. allâh will admit them to his mercy. certainly allâh is oft-forgiving, most merciful." [al-qur'an 9:99]
those of them who were present at makkah, madinah and thaqif and in many other areas of al-yemen and al-bahrain were different because islam had been firmly rooted in their souls. some of them were great companions and masters of muslims. [muhadarat tareekh al-umam al-islamiyah 1/44; sahih al-bukhari 1/13, 2/626-630; ibn hisham 2/501-503, 510-514, 537-542, 560-601; za'd al-ma'ad 3/26-60; fath al-bari 8/83-103; rahmat-ul-lil'alameen 1/184-217]