19 Safar 1441

HOLDING THE ROPE OF ALLAH

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Jul 1st, 2014
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Allah Azza wa Jal has ordered the Muslims to fear Him as He should be feared. The Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam used to inaugurate his speeches on Fridays and on Eid with this Aya’h of Surat A’al Imran as I have just recited.

And this is known as Khutba Al Hajar and this Aya’h and the Aya’h that follows have clear cut instructions for the Muslims who recite the Qur’an and who believe in Allah Azza wa Jal. Allah says, “O you who believe fear Allah as He should be feared and die not except in the state of Islam as Muslims.” And then Allah goes on to say in the second Aya’h, “And hold fast all of you together to the rope of Allah and be not divided among yourselves and remember Allah’s favor on you for you were enemies one towards the other but He joined your hearts together so that by the Grace of Allah you became brethren and you were on the brink of a pit of fire and He saved you from it.” In these beautiful two Aya’hs Allah Azza wa Jal tells us to fear Him as he should be feared.

When this Aya’h was revealed to the companions {may Allah be pleased with them} they used to pray night prayers till their feet were swollen because they thought that this was ‘Fearing Allah as He should be feared.’ Ibn Mas’ood {may Allah be pleased with him} says explaining how we should fear Allah Azza wa Jal: ‘To obey Him and not to disobey Him, to remember Him and not to forget Him and to be grateful to Him and to not show any kind of ungratefulness to Him.’

Now in the second Aya’h Allah tells us to be steadfast, to abide by the rope of Allah Azza wa Jal and to stay and remain steadfast on Islam until we die. And by Allah this is the most fearful thing that a true Muslim fears, he fears that Allah would turn his heart and he would die on Kufr {Wala’i Aauuz billah} and that is why Prophet salla Allahu alahi wa sallam used to often supplicate to Allah by saying: ‘O Turner of hearts, turn my heart to be steadfast on worshiping You!’ {Ya Muqallibul Quloob, sabbit qalbi al’a deenik} And the people used to ask him in astonishment if he feared that Allah would turn his heart elsewhere!! He said, “The hearts are between two fingers of Allah Azza wa Jall, Allah turns them how He wishes.” I pray to Allah that He make our hearts steadfast on Islam and that we die on Islam as it pleases Him. Allah Azza wa Jall ordered us to abide by the rope of Allah and what is the Tafseer of the ‘Rope of Allah?’ Some of the scholars interpret it as ‘Islam.’

So you abide by Islam. Others interpret it as the ‘Qur’an,’ because the book of Allah is what unites us and some others interpret it as the ‘Jama’h,’ the majority of the Muslims, this is what we should be abiding by and that is why Allah Azza wa Jal says to abide by the Rope of Allah and not to be divided. So you cannot have unity without abiding by the Rope of Allah and division is something that Allah Azza wa Jal hates, abhors, something that Allah doesn’t like and that is why our Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam told us that the Ummah will be divided into 73 sects, all of them are in hell except 1. Are you among this one, how would we know which one? The prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam said, “Whomsoever would follow me and my companions would be saved.” So if you are on the footsteps of the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam you are among the saved ones but if you have deviations, if you diverted from the straight path, if you have innovations, if you have different Aqeed’ah than the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam used to believe in, if you reject the Sunnah and say, “No, I will follow my forefathers, I will follow those whom I believe to be people of knowledge.” If you do not follow the Qur’an or the Sunnah then you have a problem.

And division is the result of the handy work of Satan! That is why if you read the Qur’an Allah forbids intoxicants and gambling and Allah describes it as ‘Filth’ and ‘Impurity’ from Satan who works hard to cause enmity and hatred through them! So division comes from Satan; anything that causes hatred and enmity in your heart, Islam forbids it. That is why if you look at the Hadith of the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, reported in Sahih Imam Muslim, he says, “Shaitan has given up hope on Muslims in Arabian peninsula to worship him!” Satan gave up hope; Khallas Muslims in Arabia will never worship the shaitan! But he did not give up hope in them by causing enmity and hatred.

And look at the Muslims around you!! When we had Abu Bakr, Umar, Usman and Ali {may Allah be pleased with them} as Khalifs, when we had Abu Ummaiyah in the Umaiyat Khilafah, when we had the Abbasi Khilafah, when we had Ottomans; they were all united. All of the Muslim world was united and look at us now; we hate each other because we don’t carry the same passport, we need visas, we need this we need that: all this because of the division that Shaitan caused and the hatred and enmity in our hearts. Read the Shariy’ah, read Islam and you will find that our Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam forbids anything that causes hatred between you and me as brothers. The Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam says, “Do not give your back to one another.” If you need me I cannot give you my back, pretending that I did not see you, this is Haraam! You should not have any envy, you should not have any grudges, you should not even raise the price of a commodity you don’t want to buy so that you fool someone else into buying it; this is Haraam in Islam.

 

The Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam forbade you to cut in if 2 brothers are selling and buying and you cut in so that you could sell the same thing a little bit cheaper and you destroy the transaction of your brother, this is Haraam. The Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam forbade you to propose a woman, if you know that another brother has proposed to her and the family and she had already accepted; you can’t go like: “I am more worthy of her.” This is prohibited! It is prohibited in Islam to boast and be proud of your lineage: ‘I am a Syed, I am this; I come from this or that country!’ This is totally prohibited. Backbiting and gossiping is Haraam in Islam. He orders you to give way when you sit and to smile at your brother even if you don’t like him, because he wants to block the means for Shaitan; all of this is to cleanse our hearts. So when I meet my brother, I meet him with humility, with love, with compassion, not with hatred, not with arrogance, not with thinking that I know better than he does! Unity comes by abiding by the rope of Allah Azza wa Jall and this happens only if you abide by the Qur’an and by the Sunnah of the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam. Not by your understanding but by the understanding of the previous Salaf or predecessors, the companions of the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam, the Taba’een; they understood the Qur’an better than you and me and they understood the Sunnah better than you and me. So we understand what Allah has revealed through their understanding, because they are the chosen ones.

And the unity is to follow the Qur’an and the Sunnah. The Jama’ah is whoever follows the Qur’an and the Sunnah even if he’s the only as Ibn Mas’ood {may Allah be pleased with him} said. And that is why we have to go back to basics: To the Qur’an and the Sunnah with the proper understanding of the Salaf.

This unity does not mean that we do not differ because we are not angles, we are bound to differ. But the difference of opinions between us should not cause hatred or enmity; there are differences which are acceptable: When you recite the Qur’an you say Bismillah hir Rahman nir Raheem and you recite the Fateha in the prayer, I don’t follow this, does this mean that I don’t say Salam to you? If you are following the Madhab of Imam Abu Hanifa and you do not raise your hands whenever you bow down or raise up after Ru’ku, does this mean that I will say that you are an innovator and that you don’t love the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam and you are this and that?

Pointing fingers at people is not part of Islam because if you point one finger at a brother you are pointing the other three at yourself! So always be careful about what you do. Difference of opinion is normal, the companions themselves, the best people to walk the earth after the Messengers of Allah, they differed among themselves, but this difference of opinion did not cause any enmity. Ibn Mas’ood {may Allah be pleased with him} went to Hajj with Uthman {may Allah be pleased with him} Uthman got married in Makkah and he thought that it was ok to pray in Mina 4 rakah instead of shortening it to 2 as this is the Sunnah {because he was married in Makkah, so he is a resident} Ibn Mas’ood said, “No, this is completely wrong, this is against the Sunnah! The Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam did not do this!” And Ibn Mas’ood made an issue out of it. And when prayer time came he prayed behind Uthman 4 Rak’ahs! The companions said, “You had just made an issue out of it and you said that this is not the Sunnah!” He said, “Yes, this is not the Sunnah but division and difference of opinion is evil, so I aired my opinion but we do not divide, we do not differ.

And Imam Shafai’s {may Allah have mercy on his soul} friend Younus Us Sadafi was a scholar and he said, “I have never seen anyone wiser than Imam Ash Shafai. We disputed once over a particular issue in Islam and we debated, it got a little bit heated and then we departed. The following day Imam Ash Shafai came to me, took my hand and said, “Younus, cant we differ over something and still be brethren?” Younus said, “I have never seen anyone like him!”

The Muslims are being attacked everywhere, without any exception, even in the lands of Islam, they are being attacked, either physically or through attacking their religion. And this is the rule and the Sunnah of Allah Azza wa Jal that we have to be tested in order to be rewarded; those who pass the test Allah would reward them. Allah said in the last Aya’h of Surat Ankaboot, “And those who strive in our cause, Allah would guide them.” And if you read Surat Al Baqara, you will find 2 or 3 Aya’hs in the beginning about the believers and 2 or 3 Aya’hs about the disbelievers, and a whole list of 10+ Aya’hs on the hypocrites, because the hypocrites are more dangerous than the disbelievers. If you see an enemy, a disbeliever, everyone is going to fight him, but the hypocrites; nobody fights them because they look like us, they speak like us, and they live among us, yet they try to change the religion of Allah Azza Wa Jall.

They try to get us away from worshipping Allah Alone and try to get us to worship others. And what is the best way to attack Islam? It is something that was used by the British Empire: ‘Divide and rule, Divide and conquer.’ And Muslims all over the world are divided, even among the practicing Muslims. I’m not talking about the sinners and those who go to night clubs, I’m talking about those who love Allah; they have divisions, they have lots of sects and parties: “This is Salafi, this is Ahle Hadees, this is Super Salafi and that is Minor Salafi, these are Taliqees, these are the Sufis, the Shiyas”, etc and all claim to want to be the true Servants of Allah Azza Wa Jall. Now I am lost! How can I find the unity, how can I achieve the unity that Allah Azza Wa Jall Ordered me in the Aya’hs that I have recited in the very beginning of the Khutbah? This is my objective. My objective is not Khilafah, my objective is not to conquer and to rule. My objective is to obey Allah’s Orders. What does Allah want from me? To unite, to abide by the Rope of Allah Azza Wa Jall. How can we reach this unity? Well, first of all, there can be no unity without abiding by the Qur’an. Can there? Can there be unity without following the Aqeedah?

 

Can I join hands in unity with someone who curses my Mother Aisha, Abu Bakr, Umar, Uthman, and the majority of the Companions, may Allah be pleased with them?! And if someone says that these Companions are in Hell and that they are Kafir, do I join hands with this person or do I put my foot on his neck? Do I join hands with someone who does not know Allah and who says awful things about my Lord? Do I join hands with someone who says that all other religions, whether Christianity or Judaism or any other religion, are all the same and who says that everyone of every religion will go to Paradise? What kind of a belief is this? How do I join hands with someone who does not believe in the Qur’an and who does not follow the Prophet’s (salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam) Sunnah? I claim to love Allah Azza Wa Jall, and to love the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam and that is why I follow him in every little detail. How can I join hands with someone who worships graves, and he says, “Help! Help! O you who is in the grave! {Whether it is Hussain or Hassan or even the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam} Bring me this and protect me from that!” How can I do this with someone who doesn’t worship Allah but worships the graves, and slaughters for them, and wipes the walls, asking for, ‘Barakah! Barakah!’ This cannot be.

Unity comes from abiding by the Qur’an, by reviving the sunnah of the Prophet salla Allahu alaihi wa sallam. So we have to be careful of those who are committing Bid’ah, but at the same time we have to give them Da’wah because they are still Muslims until their Bid’ah takes them out of the folds of Islam. The Muslims nowadays are divided into three types. Two of them are the extremes which are the right and the left paths and the third one is the middle path. May Allah make us amongst the people of the middle path! The people of far right are those who say, “We do not have any type of communication with anyone who differs with us, even on small matters.” So the Hanafis don’t raise their hands when they pray, so I don’t talk to them, they’re not my brothers and we have to have fights. What kind of Islam is this? This is totally unacceptable and wrong. And on the far left, people say that anyone who says, ‘La ilaha illa Allah’, he’s a Muslim, and we join hands with him, even if he’s a communist, even if he’s Nusairi, even if he’s Rafiqui, even if he’s a grave-worshipper, as long as he says, ‘La ilaha illa Allah’ it’s good enough! No, as Muslims we have to filter our lives and go through the Qur’an and the Sunnah.

We do not compromise with the foundations of Islam, with the foundations of Tawheed, of Aqeedah or of Sunnah. And at the same time, we don’t make small differences, something that makes it or breaks it. And by abiding by the Qur’an and the Sunnah, by filtering our lives, our customs, our work, our studies, our finance, our economy, our politics by looking at all of these through the Qur’an and the Sunnah, we will reach the level that Allah Azza Wa Jall told us to abide by and to die while being Muslims.

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