In my childhood, We were told in books that when the prophet reached the age of 40, that is the age when prophethood is revealed, the Angel Gabriel appeared to him in the Cave of Hira.

My question is, is there any evidence that 40 is the age of Risalaut? As an argument, I can say that Jesus did not wait till 40 to become prophet. Also Moses AFAIK did not receive revelation at 40. What is the story behind the ago of 40 as the age of Nabuwat or Risalut. I can further argue that if the prophet was declared at an early age, he would have more time preaching the religion and thus fulfilling Allah duties better since the person will be in better health and will have more time preaching the religion.

  • 1
    It is from the wisdom of the All-Wise that he made the revelation for certain people at a certain age. If one needs to argue, he may ask why Allah gave him 2 hands and 2 feet while giving the octopus 8. But that's absurd as the Allaah knows what's best for his creation.
    – itsols
    Commented Sep 29, 2013 at 2:10
  • is there any evidence that 40 is the age of prophethood? no proof AFAIK. God had granted his prophets their prophethood at whatever age he wanted to. There is no such specific age Commented Jun 28 at 23:48

4 Answers 4


I actually had never heard of the age of Nabuwat

Rasulullah Muhammad SAW was appointed as a prophet at the age of 40 years in the Cave of Hira and his first revelation was 'Iqra' (Surah Al-Alaq) It all is a provision of God and we should not suppose that Rasulullah SAW being a Prophet at a younger age because verily Allah knows best

Wallaahu a'lam


Many Prophets were, as you mentioned, Prophets before the age of 40. We can includes Isa (Jesus), etc. However, we know that different nations and humanity progressed differently, eg, the physical length of humans and so on - as well as the differences in the respective Shar'iah of different nations were slightly different in the details (eg, laws regarding food). In this respect, and in our Ummah, the age of 40 is the age of greatest strength and this is perhaps an important reason why this was the age chosen.

ووصينا الإنسان بوالديه إحسانا حملته أمه كرها ووضعته كرها وحمله وفصاله ثلاثون شهرا حتى إذا بلغ أشده وبلغ أربعين سنة قال رب أوزعني أن أشكر نعمتك التي أنعمت علي وعلى والدي وأن أعمل صالحا ترضاه وأصلح لي في ذريتي إني تبت إليك وإني من المسلمين - "And We have enjoined on man to be dutiful and kind to his parents. His mother bears him with hardship and she brings him forth with hardship, and the bearing of him, and the weaning of him is thirty (30) months, ➡ till when he attains full strength and reaches forty years, he says: "My Lord! Grant me the power and ability that I may be grateful for Your Favour which You have bestowed upon me and upon my parents, and that I may do righteous good deeds, such as please You, and make my off-spring good. Truly, I have turned to You in repentance, and truly, I am one of the Muslims (submitting to Your Will)"." (46:15)

Important note: Whenever we speak on such matters which are not explicitly mentioned in Qur'an and Sunnah (such as the current question of the reason behind the Prophethood of Muhammad starting at age 40), we have to always acknowledge that the truth may be different to what we are able to derive from the Qur'an and Sunnah.


40 number has many special meanings that lies with Allah SWT only. As per Rasulullah (pbuh) said all or most prophets are given prophethood at the age of 40. Muhammad (pbuh) was given first revelation few months less than the age of 40.

In other references from Quran and hadith, age 40 is the age of maturity. Rasulullah said in an hadith that a person's characteristic is mostly formed and completed at the age of 40, very little change can happen to one's characteristic after age 40. Allah knows best, but after studying Quran and Hadith, my learning about prophethood are - 1. it comes from Allah SWT only 2. Allah gives it to whom HE wishes to be 3. maturity and certain level of learning to acquire wisdom before prophethood is must 4. If Allah don't send revelation, no prophet can bring it from Allah SWT 5. Prophethood is majorly for - inviting people to one and only GOD (Allah SWT), bring changes in society, lead by example, etc.

to do all these, a person must acquire wisdom and then health. That is why age 40 is chosen by Allah SWT for giving prophethood. Allah knows best, and we know nothing. 40 is a very surprising number related in other areas as well, such as -

  1. a child's status in the womb is changed in every 40 days
  2. as per hadith to change one's habbit require repeating the action for 40 consecutive days or 6 weeks (science has just proved it after 1400+ years!!!)
  3. Musa/Moses (pbuh) was called for 40 days and nights to get TEN commandments
  4. When Musa/Moses (pbuh) requested to see Allah SWT, but couldn't see and become senseless before the reflection. He was sensless for 40 days
  5. Noah (pbuh) and his companions were floating in the ship (made by Allah's instruction) for 40 days
  6. Allah specially ordained all human being to take care of their parents at the age of 40 (when parents age reach at 40). Allah SWT said in the Quran to behave softly with them when they reach the age of 40
  7. etc. etc. many more

To answer your question in a line - "40 is the age of certain maturity or wisdom for prophethood, defined by Allah SWT, and HE knows best about the answer". As Allah said in the Quran that everything happens at its' precise and predestined timeline, not before the moment or after the moment.

Anything i have said wrong, i am mistaken myself and may Allah forgive me for that, amin. Allah is completely error-free, and we are full of errors, may Allah forgive us for that, amin.

May Allah bless you, amin.


A nabi is born nabi, the reason we are provided that He got his first wahi in age of 40 so he got nabuwat in the age of 40, this is not a valid reason. if it is valid then anyone can be nabi. As Adam was born nabi. before creating anyone Allah created Muhammad saww n Ale Muhammad & declared them nabi & Alulbeth

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .