Characteristics of Prophet Abraham's (pbuh) tribe
Historical sources record that Prophet Abraham lived in Mesopotamia. According to some Islamic sources, the Prophet Abraham’s father was from Harran, and it was there that the prophet was born. In the light of those parts of the Torah that describe the life of the Prophet Abraham, it appears more likely that his place of birth was not Ur of the Chaldeans, but the present-day Urfa in Turkey, after which he moved to Harran, and from there to Palestine.
The Qur’an informs us that he and his son, Prophet Ishmael (peace be upon him) built the Ka`bah. This confirms the historical accounts that Prophet Abraham did indeed live in the Middle East.
At his time, nearly all of the tribes in the Middle East held pagan beliefs. They either worshiped statues they made with their own hands, or else celestial bodies such as the Sun and the Moon.
Indeed, historical and archaeological discoveries prove that this region was a pagan land.
Archaeological excavations in the region have uncovered a great many remains of statues made from stone and clay, and used as idols.
Furthermore, in one of these digs, remains of the temples known as ziggurats were found. It has been proven with historical documents that the purpose behind these temples was to worship the Sun and the Moon.
This is the cave in which the Prophet Abraham is said to have been born. According to information in the works of Muslim historians, seers and soothsayers said that a child called Abraham who would be born that year would change the religion of the people and put an end to the rule of Nimrod. Another historical account says that Nimrod saw that his reign would be brought to an end by a male child due to enter the world and that he then had all pregnant women collected together in one place and commanded that all the male children to whom they gave birth be killed, and that husbands be kept apart from their wives. At this Azar, the father of the Prophet Abraham, took his wife to the city of Ur between Kufa and Basra (or to the place known as al Warqaa) and hid her in a cave there. The Prophet Abraham was then born in that cave.
The tribe of Prophet Abraham were also a pagan people. They made statues with their own hands, and then mindlessly worshiped them. They prayed to them, and although it was obvious that they could receive nothing from them, they begged them for help. They even feared these pieces of wood and stone, and hoped for assistance from them.
God revealed to Prophet Abraham that He was the Creator of everything in the universe and that those who believed otherwise were utterly mistaken. And He showed him proofs of His dominion over the heavens and Earth:
Because of that, We showed Abraham the dominions of the heavens and Earth so that he might be one of the people of certainty. (Qur’an, 6:75)
Prophet Abraham explained God’s existence to his tribe and called them to belief in Him. The people of the tribe, however, refused to accept the truths he told them because they had sought refuge in the supposed justification of abiding by the religion of their forefathers. Yet it was obvious that abiding by the superstitious religions of their ancestors could benefit them nothing, but would rather inflict great troubles upon them. God has revealed the position of those who ignorantly abide by the religion of their forefathers in the Qur’an:
When they are told:
“Follow what God has sent down to you,” they reply: “We are following what we found our fathers doing.”
What, even though their fathers did not understand a thing and were not guided! (Qur’an, 2:170)