Hazrat Usman bin Affan (RA) was born seven years after the Holy Prophet(PBUH) and belonged to one of the wealthiest tribes of Mecca.
Hazrat Usman was among the few people who learnt to read and write at a young age. Even before he accepted Islam he was known for his truthfulness and integrity. He is critically important in Islamic history because his death marked the beginning of open religious and political conflicts within the Islamic community
Acceptance of Islam
Hazrat Usman (RA) was around 34 years of age when he had first heard of Islam. He related this to his good friend Hazrat Abu Bakr(RA) who then took the opportunity and began preaching to him the message of Islam. He said that if he wanted, he could meet with the Holy Prophet (PBUH).
Without any hesitation, Hazrat Usman accepted Islam and performed Bai‘at at the hand of the Holy Prophetsa. He thus became one of the earliest followers to accept Islam.
Service to Islam
Hazrat Usman committed his entire life in the service of Islam. Though his family was in command of the Quraish, he accepted Islam as he knew it to be right. His service to Islam is remembered even today all throughout history.
When the Muslims migrated to Medina, the first difficulty they faced was the scarcity of water.
There was only one well in Medina which belonged to a Jew who would sell the water to the poor inhabitants of Medina at a high price. Hazrat Usman (RA) decided to purchase the well and open it for the people of Medina. This was a means of easing the first difficulty that the Muslims faced.
On one occasion, the Holy Prophet (PBUH) said that Usman had served Islam to such an extent that now he could have whatsoever he wished and that God would not question him. This shows that he possessed so many good qualities that it was impossible for his actions to be against the teachings of Islam.
The status of Hazrat Usman (RA)
The Holy Prophetsa had immense respect for Hazrat Usman. On one occasion, the Holy Prophetsa was lying down in a room when suddenly Hazrat Uthmanra entered. The Holy Prophetsa instantly sat up and began adjusting his clothes. Later when Hazrat Aishara asked the Holy Prophetsa about this, he replied, “Should I not show modesty to one whom even the Angels show modesty.”
Even before accepting Islam, Hazrat Usman was known among the people as trustworthy, kind and generous. He was a rich merchant and used his wealth in the service of Islam. He was chosen as the third Khalifa of the Prophet (PBUH).
During the Khilafat of Hazrat Usman (RA), Islam had expanded a great deal with such efficiency that it spread all over the world into China. One of the major accomplishments was of the Holy Quran we see today which was compiled during his Khilafat and under his direct supervision. To date, the entire Muslim Umma benefits from this service.
The sad demise of Hazrat Usman (RA) was a sad day for the Muslim Umma. He was brutally murdered by the munafiqin. Even during that period where members of his household were under threat due to the invasion of his house, immediately prior to his martyrdom, he bore all those afflictions with great patience and loyalty to the cause of Islam. He was, indeed, a true servant of the Holy Prophet Muhammad (PBUH).