Hazrat Umar was a headstrong young man of great determination. He was brought up to venerate the Kabah and to cherish the unity of the Quraysh and their religion. That is why he saw Islam as a threat to the Quraysh and became most violent and unrestrained in his attacks on Muslims. He was one of the most rabid enemies of Islam and of Muhammad, the Messenger of God, and was a great tormentor of the Muslims. That is why conversion of hazrat umer to islam is very famous incident in Islamic history.
It was the sixth year of Holy Prophet’s mission when Quraish leaders called a meeting . in this meeting they discussed the current situation of tribe, the most prevailing one of which was the new emerging religion Islam. All the leaders greed upon the assassination of the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu ‘alaihi wa Sallam). Now problem was, who would perform that task. At one moment, all eyes turned towards this fearless man, who had come forth. They saw that he was Umar, the Son of khattab. The Qurayshis were confident that Umar bin khattab was more than capable. Umar bin khattab, being famous of his bravery , fearlessness and hatred for islam , was chosen for this job and everybody in the meeting exclaimed that he was the right person for it.
In sheer exasperation , he took out his sword and headed for the Prophet’s house. On his way he came face to face with a secret believer in the Prophet (Sa’d bin Abi Waqqas) who seeing Hazrat Umer’s grim expression asked him where he was going. “I am going to kill Muhammad…”. Hazrat Sa’d bin Abi Waqqas went cold all over upon hearing this dreadful decision and looked for ways to discourage him from his intension. “By God, you are embarking on a very difficult affair. Muhammad’s companions never leave his side for the slightest moment. It is very difficult to find a way. Let us say that you were able to find a way and killed him. Do you think that the Sons of Abd al-Manaf would allow you to roam freely on the face of the Earth?”
Umar bin khattab looked at his addressee sternly and asked “Or are you on his side as well?” However, he received an unexpected answer: “O Umar, forget about me; return to your family and community. Your brother-in-law and uncle’s son, Said bin Zayd and his wife, your sister, Fatima, have submitted to Muhammad’s religion. Go and deal with them first!” Hearing this Umar bin khattab changed his direction and went straight to his sister’s house.
Umar bin khattab came to the door (of the house of his sister) , he heard some voices of recitation coming from inside home .There he called out to her angrily as he approached. Khabbab ibn al-Aratt who often came to recite the Quran to Said and Fatimah was with them then, and they were reciting surah taha. Hearing the furious voice of her brother, she hide the holy Quran in home, mean while Umer bin khattab entered house.
Entering the house he asked “ what was that voice coming from house when I approached ?” They tried to assure him that it was only normal conversation that he had heard but he insisted: “Hear it I did,” he said, “and it is possible that you have both become renegades.” Hazrat Umar bin khattab exploded in wrath at what he believed to be a prevarication, and struck his sister in her face. The blow caused her mouth to bleed. He was going to strike again but the sight of blood made him pause. He suddenly appeared to relent, and then in a changed tone asked her to show him what she was reading. She sensed a change in him but said: “You are an unclean idolater, and I cannot allow you to touch the Word of God.” He washed his body and then read the quran. That was the beginning of Surah Ta Ha (Chapter 20 of the Holy Quran). When he came to the verse:
“Lo! I even I, am Allah, there is no god save Me. So serve Me and establish Salat for My remembrance”. (20:14)
Umar bin khattab exclaimed, “Surely this is the Word of Allah. Take me to Muhammad (Sallallahu ’alaihi wa Sallam)”.
Umar bin khattab then made his way to the house of al-Arqam. A watchman informed our Holy Prophet (PBUH) that Hazrat Umarbin khattab had come with a sword on his waist. An air of worry and nervousness beset upon everyone. At last, there was a knock heard on door . Prophet peace be upon him allowed to open the door , and the view of front after opening the door was very encouraging for muslims. Umar bin khattab, who was waiting in front of that door, entered with his imposing appearance and weapon. On seeing him, the Holy Prophet (Sallallahu ‘alaihi wa Sallam) asked him, “Umar! what brings you here”? He said, “I am here to accept Islam”. Hearing this the Muslims shouted with joy. In unison, they all recited the Takbir loudly: Allahu Akbar… Allahu Akbar! (Allah is Great, Allah is Great!) These sounds of Takbir that were heard on the streets of Mecca rang in the horizon and from there, rose to the skies as waves filled with light.
This incident holds a great importance in Islamic history, as muslims were now empowered with great strength after conversion of hazrat umer to islam. It was after hazrat umer embraced islam , that muslims started praying freely, and islam started speading readily.