The Holy Prophet's Marriage with Hadrat Khadija
The Messenger of Allah (S) married Lady Khadija at the age of twenty?five, while Khadija herself was forty years old. Yet some historians allege that she was twenty?five, and still others claim that she was twenty?eight years old.
It is also said that she had two previous marriages before marrying the Prophet (S) some historians dispute this and indicate that she was a virgin when He (S) married her. This last claim is not common.
The Prophet's marriage to Khadija was not a usual one, it was a unique marriage because it was not initiated as a result of a love relationship, nor was there material or political motives behind it, which was commonplace among the elite classes. In fact, there was no correspondence between the Prophet's economical position and that of Khadija's. On one hand, the Messenger was sponsored by his poor uncle, Abu Talib and on the other hand, Khadija was the wealthiest lady in Mecca. Thus, there was an evident gap between them in this peculiarity.
Khadija heard that the Prophet had a bright and sacred future ahead of him?perhaps she heard this from her servant Maisarah, who informed her of what had happened to the Messenger during a commercial trip to Syria in which he had worked for her. Or perhaps he conveyed to her what the monk in Busra said about the future of the Prophet?upon learning this, Lady Khadija suggested that prophet Muhammad (S) marry her, and urged him to ask for her hand from her Father, Khuwaylid (according to some historians it was her uncle).
The Prophet, who preferred to marry a poor woman from his own economical class, apologized to Khadija and refused her request. But she, being a wise, reasonable, and honorable woman informed him that she was ready to grant him herself and that property was not a difficult thing to put at his disposal. So she once again urged him to send his uncles to ask for her hand from her Father, Khuwaylid.
The Prophet's uncles and aunts were astonished at this news; a very wealthy lady who sponsors hundreds of people, and tens of men work for her in her property and trade for her throughout the summer and winter seasons, between Yemen, Mecca and Syria; a great Lady whom the noblemen had asked to marry, but she had refused them all, giving herself to a poor Quraishan young man, sponsored by his poor uncle, Abu Talib!! Could she have been honest in doing so?! Could this news be true? Safiya bint Abdul Muttalib (the Prophet's aunt) rushed to Khadija's house to validate the news. She was warmly welcomed by Khadija who informed her of her earnest desire to do so.
LADY KHADIJA ON THE WAY TO A BLESSED LIFE
When Safiya returned home and informed her brothers (the Prophet's uncles) of the authenticity of the news, happiness mixed with amazement and astonishment overtook them.
Khadija who refused to marry the princes and lords of the Arabs, because she deemed them unworthy to marry, chose to be the wife of a poor man who owned nothing of the ephemeral things of this world, of even a foot of land!!
This was the wonder of wonders!!
The Prophet's uncles proceeded towards Khadija's house and asked for her hand from her father (or uncle) who at first rejected them but later agreed to the proposal.
Inevitably, an appropriate sum of money had to be presented to Khadija as her dowry; how could it be obtained? And who would donate it?
This was a difficult question at hand, until Khadija once again surprised everyone by giving four thousand dinars as a gift to the Prophet, and urged him to pay it to her father as her dowry. Although according to another historical finding, it was Abu Talib who paid the dowry from his own money.
Even though Khadija was a woman of high standards who sacrificed material gains to achieve honor, her father, Khuwaylid, possessed contradicting values. This difference between Khadija and her father is not rare between parents and their children; in fact, this ideological difference can also be found between various classes of people, brothers, spouses, and parents.
Khadija's payment of the dowry was a unique, amazing and unforeseen act; for the Arabs were not acquainted with women giving dowries to their husbands. Thus, it was not unexpected of Abu Jahel to incite an envious commotion and say:
"O people, we have thus seen men paying dowries to women; we are not used to women giving dowry to men” In answer to this, Abu Talib angrily replied:
"What is the matter with you? O you wicked man! Men like Muhammad are to be given gifts and grants, but your likes give gifts that people always reject."
or he said:
"If it was a man like my nephew then the greatest dowries are to be granted to him, but men like you cannot get married save by paying large sums of money."
The blessed wedding took place in the best possible way, the Messenger moved in with Lady Khadija who felt that she was going through the happiest period of her life, because she had reached her best wishes and sweetest dreams.
Khadija gave birth to several children of whom only four daughters survived: Zainab, Umme Kulthum, Ruqiya, and Fatima?Zahra who was the youngest and most exalted of them all.
There is a difference between historians regarding the first two daughters, for some claim that they were the Prophet's step-daughters; but the fact is that they were his direct daughters. This fact will be explained in the coming pages, if Allah wills.  The story of Khadija's marriage was summarized and carried on from Bihar Al?Anwar: v.6.
Fatima (A.S.) The Gracious
Abu Muhammad Ordoni