The Prophet (ﷺ), being as brave as he was, utterly fearless throughout his life, meant that not only was he truthful, but he was certain of his truthfulness.
Ali Ibn Abi Talib (RA) says that when the fighting (in Badr) would become severe, we would seek refuge around the Prophet (ﷺ).
It was narrated that ‘Ali (RA) said:
When the fighting grew intense on the day of Badr, we sought shelter by drawing close to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ), who was one of the strongest of the people, and no one was closer to the mushrikeen than him.
(Musnad Ahmad 1042: Book 5, Hadith 462)
Anas (RA) relates an incident that happened one night in Madinah.
One day in Madinah, people heard a loud commotion and did not know what was happening. So they came out of their houses wondering whether it was an enemy attack or if there was some beast out on the loose.
Narrated Anas (RA):
The Prophet (ﷺ) was the best among the people (both in shape and character) and was the most generous of them, and was the bravest of them. Once, during the night, the people of Medina got afraid (of a sound). So the people went towards that sound, but the Prophet (ﷺ) having gone to that sound before them, met them while he was saying, "Don't be afraid, don't be afraid." (At that time) he was riding a horse belonging to Abu Talha. It was naked without a saddle, and he was carrying a sword slung on his neck. The Prophet (ﷺ) said, "I found it (the horse) like a sea, or, it is the sea indeed."
(Sahih al-Bukhari 6033: Book 78, Hadith 63)
This shows the bravery of the Prophet (ﷺ). He hears the sound and is the first person to jump on a horse without even a saddle, take his sword, and rush to where the sound was coming from. Then he (ﷺ) gallops back to the people of Medina to let them know there is nothing to fear. Whatever it was, it was not anything for them to get worried about.
On another occasion at the end of his life when the ambush took place at the battle of Hunain and everyone scrambled in every direction, they asked Bara ibn Azib (RA) after that incident:
It has been narrated (through a different chain of transmitters) by Abu Ishiq that a person said to Bara' (b. 'Azib):
Abu Umara, did you flee on the Day of Hunain? He replied: The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) did not retreat. (What actually happened was that some hasty young men who were either inadequately armed or were unarmed met a group of men from Banu Hawazin and Banu Nadir who happened to be (excellent) archers. The latter shot at them a volley of arrows that did not miss. The people turned to the Messenger of Allah (ﷺ). Abu Sufyan b. Harith was leading his mule. So he got down, prayed and invoked God's help. He said: I am the Prophet. This is no untruth. I am the son of Abd al-Muttalib. O God, descend Thy help. Bara' continued: When the battle grew fierce. we, by God, would seek protection by his side, and the bravest among us was he who confronted the onslaught and it was the Prophet (ﷺ).
(Sahih Muslim 1776b : Book 32, Hadith 98)
As for his generosity, the Prophet (ﷺ) would never refuse any request. One of the Sahaba said that any little girl could go to the Prophet (ﷺ) and ask him to do something for her. If she needed him to carry something, she would have no fear to go and ask the Prophet (ﷺ) to help her out.
It is narrated that once the Prophet (ﷺ) was wearing a garment that had holes in it. It was not appropriate that the Prophet (ﷺ) was wearing a garment like this. So one of the Sahaba gifted him a very beautiful garment. He went home, wore that garment, and came outside. Another Sahaba immediately said, Ya Rasulullah, can you give me this garment as a gift? So the Prophet (ﷺ) turned to him and said, yes. So he went back home, wore the same clothes that he had just taken off, and gave him the new one.
The other Sahaba who were there were not happy with the Sahaba who asked for the new garment from the Prophet (ﷺ). After a while, when the Prophet (ﷺ) went back to his house, they rebuked him; how could you have asked the Prophet (ﷺ) the new garment he was wearing, you knew that he would never turn down a request. So he said, before you get angry at me, I am not doing this to wear. I want to use this as my kaffan (cloth to be buried in) to show the generosity of the Prophet (ﷺ) in front of Allah. So he had his reason for doing that.
Along with all of these, the Prophet (ﷺ) was also a person blessed with a great sense of humor. Having humor shows your humanity and that you are a down-to-earth person. There are many instances of the jokes of the Prophet (ﷺ) and they were always truthful. So even when he caused people to laugh, it was not based on a lie.
Al-Hasan Al-Basri (RA) narrates the story of the old lady asking the Prophet (ﷺ) to make dua for to enter Jannah:
Al-Hasan Al-Basri said:
"An old woman came to the Prophet (ﷺ) and said: 'O Messenger of Allah, beseech Allah to let me enter the Garden of Paradise!' He replied: 'O Mother of So-and-so, no old woman will enter the Garden of Paradise!' She turned away weeping, so he said: 'Tell her that she will not enter it as an old woman, for Allah says: ‘We have created them a new creation, and made them virgins, loving, equal in age
إِنَّآ أَنشَأْنَـٰهُنَّ إِنشَآءً
(Ash-Shama'il Al-Muhammadiyah 239: Book 35, Hadith 6)
When the old lady began crying, he (ﷺ) said, do not cry, old ladies cannot enter Jannah, because Allah will make them into a young, fair maiden, and then they will enter Jannah. He then recited the verses of the Qur'an, which means "for, behold, We shall have brought them into being in a life renewed, having resurrected them as virgins, full of love, well-matched."
Aishah (RA) relates an incident that happened when the Prophet (ﷺ) was on his last illness. He has four or five days left to live. But, of course, the Sahaba did not know this, and they were hoping that this was just an illness and fever would go away.
It was narrated that ‘Aishah said:
“The Messenger of Allah (ﷺ) came back from Al-Baqi,’ and I had a headache and was saying: ‘O my head!’ He said: ‘Rather, I should say, O my head, O ‘Aishah!’ Then he said: ‘It will not matter if you were to die before me, for I will take care of you, wash you, shroud you, offer the funeral prayer for you and bury you.’”
(Sunan Ibn Majah 1465 : Book 6, Hadith 33)
It so happened that Aishah (RA) herself fell sick on one of the days with a severe headache. So she was crying out - O my head, O my head. So, to calm down Aishah (RA), the Prophet (ﷺ) said rather oh my head, I have a worse headache than you. The Prophet (ﷺ) had a premonition, and perhaps he even knew that he is about to die in a few days. So to calm her down, while he himself is ill, he says, O Aishah, what would you lose if you died right now, and the one to do Ghusl for you, bury you and pray your Janazah would be me. In other words, what a great honor. He is probably doing this to break the ice and bring up the topic of death. So he is saying, what would you lose? Aishah (RA) retorts back at him, saying, I am sure you would like that to happen because you would then be free to go to your other wives.
Scholars have derived Fiqh ruling from this; the permissibility to do ghusl for their spouse because he never spoke except the truth. As-Shaukani has a chapter concerning the permissibility of a husband giving his wife a bath/ghusl for burial and vice versa and mentions this Hadith as evidence.
Another remarkable story is reported in Tirmidhi by Anas Ibn Malik (RA) about the incident with a young man named Zahir (RA), whom the Prophet used to love a lot.
Anas ibn Malik said:
“There was a man among the people of the desert — his name was Zahir — and he used to bring the Prophet (ﷺ) a present from the desert, so the Prophet (ﷺ) would equip him when he wished to go out to battle. “The Prophet said (ﷺ): ‘Zahir is our desert, and we are his towns.' He (ﷺ) used to love him, though he was a homely man, so the Prophet (ﷺ) came to him one day while he was selling his wares, and embraced him from behind so that he could not see who it was. So he said: ‘Who is this? Let go of me!’ Then he turned around and recognized the Prophet (ﷺ). Once he recognized the Prophet (ﷺ), he kept his back pressed to the Prophet's chest, so the Prophet (ﷺ) proceeded to say: ‘Who will buy this slave?’ The man said: ‘O Messenger of Allah, in that case, by Allah, you will find me an unsellable commodity!’ The Prophet said (ﷺ): ‘But you are not an unsaleable commodity in the view of Allah,’ or he said: ‘You are precious to Allah!'”
(Ash-Shama'il Al-Muhammadiyah 238: Book 35, Hadith 5)
We do not know much about this person Zahir. But there was something about him that caused the Prophet (ﷺ) to love this man, and he would have an immense amount of affinity for him.
Prophet came quietly from behind, and he grabbed him. He is playing a practical joke on Zahir. When he saw it was none other than the Prophet (ﷺ), he immediately let his body touch as much of the chest of the Prophet (ﷺ) as possible to get the Baraka from his body.
Zahir was shouting to sell his merchandise. Now he's being held, and the Prophet (ﷺ) says, who will buy this Abd? In the marketplace those days, when you say who will buy the Abd, you mean the slave. Zahir was not an Abd to humanity but an Abd of Allah. So even in this joke, he (ﷺ) is not saying any lie. So Zahir says, Ya Rasulullah, in that case, you are going to get a terrible bargain. If you are going to sell me, it will not be very expensive. The Prophet said you are very expensive in the eyes of Allah. It is a beautiful story that shows us the humanity of the Prophet.
اللَّهُمَّ صَلِّ عَلَى مُحَمَّدٍ وَعَلَى آلِ مُحَمَّدٍ كَمَا صَلَّيْتَ عَلَى آلِ إِبْرَاهِيمَ إِنَّكَ حَمِيدٌ مَجِيدٌ
اللَّهُمَّ بَارِكْ عَلَى مُحَمَّدٍ وَعَلَى آلِ مُحَمَّدٍ كَمَا بَارَكْتَ عَلَى آلِ إِبْرَاهِيمَ إِنَّكَ حَمِيدٌ مَجِيدٌ
O Allaah, send prayers upon Muhammad (ﷺ) and upon the family of Muhammad (ﷺ) as You sent prayers upon the family of Ibraaheem (AS), and send blessings upon Muhammad (ﷺ) and upon the family of Muhammad (ﷺ), as You sent blessings upon the family of Ibraaheem (AS), You are indeed Worthy of Praise, Full of Glory.
The Seerah of Prophet Muhammad (ﷺ), the life and times of the greatest human being who ever lived and walked on the face of this earth, series is based on the lectures by Dr. Sh. Yasir Qadhi.