Who is our guide for the eternal salvation? What is eternal salvation?
The history of the prophets and the first page on the calendar of the prophets begins with the blessing of the first creation Nur Muhammadi, or the spiritual light of Prophet Muhammad (pbuh), to the first human being. The last page on this calendar ends with the arrival of the material being of Prophet Muhammad to this world. In this way, this prophetic light, which came down through – according to a narration – a chain of one hundred and twenty four thousand prophets, was passed to its rightful owner. In other words, this lofty light came down to Muhammad’s (pbuh) father, Abdullah, through a pure and honorable line and with the pregnancy of Muhammad’s (pbuh) mother, Aminah, it passed from Abdullah’s forehead to this fortunate lady. It finally passed from her to its original owner the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
The universe came into being from the spiritual light of the Messenger of Allah (pbuh). If a piece of earth from the essence of the Prophet Muhammad were not placed into the essence of Prophet Adam (pbuh), Adam’s (pbuh) repentance would not have been accepted, as it is stated in the following saying of the Prophet (pbuh):
“When Adam (pbuh) realized his mistake, which had caused him to be expelled from Paradise, he said:
“Dear Lord! I ask from You to forgive me for the sake of Muhammad (pbuh).”
Allah the Most High asked:
“O Adam! How do you know Muhammad even if I have not created him, yet?”
Adam (pbuh) replied:
“Dear Lord! When You created me and breathed into me from Your Spirit, I raised my head and saw that the following sentences had been written over the pillars of the heaven: “La ilaha illa Allah Muhammadun Rasulullah – There is no god save Allah and Muhammad is His Messenger.” Just then I realized that You would only attribute the most lovable of Your creation to Your name.”
Upon Adam’s (pbuh) respond, Allah the Almighty said:
“You are right O Adam! In fact for Me, he is the most loveable of all creation. Ask anything from Me for the sake of him; (Since you have already asked your forgiveness) then I forgave you. “If Muhammad had not existed, I would not have created you.”“ (Ḥakim, Mustadrak, II, 672)
Adam (pbuh) made the Messenger of Allah as mediator for his supplication and he was blessed with Divine forgiveness. The light of this honorable messenger was inherited by the descendants of Abraham (pbuh); Fire became cool and comfort for him. When this lofty pearl went into Ishmael’s (pbuh) nacre, a ram was sent down from heaven in his name.
As it is observed, even prophets were blessed by Divine mercy out of respect to him. There even existed prophets, such as Moses (pbuh), who wished to be one of his followers. In a way, every single one of the rings in the chain of the prophets (peace and blessings be upon them) were giving the good news of the arrival of the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh).
The long expected light finally honored this world just before dawn on the twelfth day of the month of Rabiul Awwal in the year 571 CE. With his light Allah’s Mercy filled this world. Day and night became different. Feelings were deepened and words, conversations, and everything gained different meanings. Idols fell down; the pillars and towers of the Chosroes’ palaces in the city of Madayin crashed down. The Sawah Lake dried up. Souls were filled with blessings and abundance.
These were manifestations of the first blessings of the Noble Being. The blessings soon encompassed the entire universe and all of time and space.
The life of Muhammad Mustafa (pbuh), the chief of the prophets, was like an endless sea and the lives of the rest of the prophets were like rivers flowing into that sea. He had all the more known and unknown distinguishing characteristics of a hundred and twenty four thousand prophets, which came before him, and he was the apex of all good manners and attributes. He was sent as the final messenger of Allah and had an exemplary personality, possessed both the advancements of human thinking achieved up to his time and the possible needs of humanity till the end of days.
In fact, the Messenger of Allah (pbuh) describes his high moral attributes as follows:
“I was sent to perfect good moral traits.” (Malik, Muwatta, Ḥusn al-Khuluq, 8)
 Cf. Qur’an Anbiya 21; 69
 Tabari, Tafsir, Ix, 87-88; Ibn Kathir, Tafsir, Ii, 259 (Part Of The Commentary On Chapter Seven (A’raf) Verse 154)
Source: An Excellent Exemplar, Osman Nuri Topbaş, Erkam Publications