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Chapter 29

The firm handle -- The Prophets (both Independent and Dependent/Lesser Prophets).

The firm handle, Baha'u'llah, the Independent Prophet.

They that judge with fairness testify that since the early days of the Cause this Wronged One hath arisen, unveiled and resplendent, before the faces of kings and commoners, before the rulers and the divines, and hath, in ringing tones, summoned all men unto the straight Path. He hath had no helper save His Pen, nor any succourer other than Himself.

Those who are ignorant or heedless of the motivating purpose of the Cause of God have rebelled against Him. Such men are the foreboders of evil, whom God hath mentioned in His Book and Tablets and against whose influence, clamour and deception He hath warned His people. Well is it with those who, in the face of the remembrance of the Lord of Eternity, regard the peoples of the world as utter nothingness, as a thing forgotten, and hold fast to the firm handle of God in such wise that neither doubts nor insinuations, nor swords, nor cannon could hold them back or deprive them of His presence. Blessed are the steadfast; blessed are they that stand firm in His Faith.
-- Bahá'u'lláh, Tablets of Bahá'u'lláh, p. 123

The firm handle, Abdu'l-Baha (the Branch).

O thou spiritual youth and merciful young man!

Consider the grace of thy Master; how He hath directed thee to the fountain of salvation, until thou hast drunk from the salsabil (i.e., clear water of life) of the guidance of God, in this holy and rich garden.

Cling to this firm handle and make thy feet steady in this path, so that the bounties of thy Supreme Lord may successively pour upon thee and make thee a sign of His mighty knowledge.
-- `Abdu'l-Bahá, Tablets of Abdu'l-Bahá, p. 256

"O Lord, I ask of Thee by the Supreme Word, whereat whosoever is in the earth and the heaven feareth save him who taketh hold of the `Most Firm Handle,' that Thou wilt not abandon Me amongst Thy creatures: lift Me up unto Thee, and make Me to enter in under the shadow of Thy mercy, and give Me to drink of the pure wine of Thy grace, that I may dwell under the canopy of Thy glory and the domes of Thy favors: verily Thou art powerful unto that Thou wishest, and verily Thou art the Protecting, the Self-Sufficing.
-- `Abdu'l-Bahá, A Traveler's Narrative, p. 76

The "most trustworthy hand-hold" [firm handle], the Holy Imams (Dependent Prophets of Muhammad); cited in "Introduction to Shi'i Islam" by Moojan Momen, p. 151-153.

2:256 Let there be no compulsion in religion: Truth stands out clear from Error: whoever rejects evil and believes in God hath grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold, that never breaks. And God heareth and knoweth all things.

2:257 God is the Protector of those who have faith: from the depths of darkness He will lead them forth into light. Of those who reject faith the patrons are the evil ones: from light they will lead them forth into the depths of darkness. They will be companions of the fire, to dwell therein (For ever).
-- Qur'an: 2 - AL-BAQARAH

31:21 When they are told to follow the (Revelation) that God has sent down, they say: "Nay, we shall follow the ways that we found our fathers (following). "What! even if it is Satan beckoning them to the Penalty of the (Blazing) Fire?

31:22 Whoever submits his whole self to God, and is a doer of good, has grasped indeed the most trustworthy hand-hold: and with God rests the End and Decision of (all) affairs.

31:23 But if any reject Faith, let not his rejection grieve thee: to Us is their return, and We shall tell them the truth of their deeds: for God knows well all that is in (men's) hearts.

31:24 We grant them their pleasure for a little while: in the end shall We drive them to a chastisement unrelenting.
-- Qur'an: 31 - LUQMAN.

My chosen servants [chosen ones], the Dependent Prophets of Baha'u'llah, who are also the Sure Handle [firm handle] and the Cord of God.

Assist ye, O My people, My chosen servants who have arisen to make mention of Me among My creatures and to exalt My Word throughout My realm. These, truly, are the stars of the heaven of My loving providence and the lamps of My guidance unto all mankind. But he whose words conflict with that which hath been sent down in My Holy Tablets is not of Me. Beware lest ye follow any impious pretender. These Tablets are embellished with the seal of Him Who causeth the dawn to appear, Who lifteth up His voice between the heavens and the earth. Lay hold on this Sure Handle and on the Cord of My mighty and unassailable Cause.
-- Baha'u'llah, The Kitab-i-Aqdas, p. 61

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