Title of the sermon: In the beginning of the life of the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him.
The name of the speaker: Mohammed Al-Saaleh Al-Uthaymeen.
Content of the Sermon (Khutbah)
In what is to follow:
O people: Fear Almighty Allah and thank him for what He bestowed on His servants, from sending the Apostles, sending down books and propagating the truth among the creation. The human mind cannot be self-guided to knowing the Creator in detail, and cannot worship Allah by means of that which he does not reach through acquisition, and he cannot treat others by way of truth and justice except through the revelation, by which Allah has shown clearly how a person is to know his Lord, how to worship Him and how to treat others. The Apostles, peace be upon them, were clarifiers of the worship of the Creator and achievers of high morals.
People conformed to one single way, the religion of their father Adam. When they grew in numbers, their word split and opinions differed. Allah sent to them His messengers so that people establish justice. Allah initiated the Message with Noah, peace be upon him, and sealed it with Mohammed. So, Mohammed is the seal of the Prophets and their best. Allah sent him following a break in Messengers; the message discontinued from the time of Jesus until the time of Mohammed. Allah created him from the line of Ismail bin Ibrahim, from the core of the Arab people. Thus, he was the noblest of people in lineage and their most honourable in birth. He was born in Makkah on Monday the second of the month of Rabiaa Al-Awwal, and it was said: on the eighth, ninth, tenth, twelfth, seventeenth, and even the twenty-second, in the year that Allah decimated the Companions of the Elephant, who wanted to demolish the Kaaba; so Allah did send down, in commemoration, a chapter of the Quran.
His mother Amina gave birth to him from his father Abdullah bin Abdul-Muttalib, and had seen before his birth that a light came out of her, lighting up the palaces of the Levant. His father passed away in Medina before he was born, and his mother died in Al-Abwa’ on the way leading to Medina, while he was aged six. His grandfather took care of him then died while the Messenger of Allah was eight. He was brought up deprived of parents and grandfather, but Almighty Allah received him; He is a Transcendent Patron and a Transcendent Helper. So, Allah has predestined to him his uncle Abu Talib, his father's sibling. He made him amongst his dependents, ensured his care and loved him strongly. Allah blessed him in his wealth and circumstance because of his care for the Prophet. He engaged in an occupation exerted by the Prophets previously. He worked in sheep herding, and there was no Prophet but herded sheep, so that he gets used to good patronage and governance in what he will be responsible for in the future, then worked in trade and was best known to people by his truth, trust and good treatment. When he reached his twenty-fifth year of age, he married Khadija, may Allah be pleased with her, who was forty years old and had been married to two men before him. She was, may Allah be pleased with her, of the noblest Arab women, described as minded, resolute and intelligent. Allah has given him two sons and four daughters from her. All his children were from her except Ibrahim; he was from the mother of his son, Maria the Coptic. All of them died during his lifetime apart from Fatimah. He did not marry another woman besides Khadija until she passed away, may Allah be pleased with her, in the tenth year of the mission, three years prior to migration. He then married Aisha after her.
He was venerated in his people, respected, attending with them important matters. He attended the Fudhul treaty, which they ratified to prevent aggressions and to restore the rights to their owners. He was an arbitrator in the Quraish at its dispute in putting the Black Stone in its place, when the Kaaba was destroyed. They quarrelled about who is to put the Black Stone back in its place. So, Allah predestined to them His Messenger; they made him judge and accepted his judgement. So, he held out his gown and put the stone therein, and said to four heads of the Quraish: let each one of you grab a side of this garment; so they held it until they brought it closer to its emplacement, he lifted it with his decent hand and put it in its place. He had gained, following this just judgement, a great honour and great news. He was, peace and blessings of Allah be upon him, protected from worshiping idols, drinking alcohol and gambling. And when he reached the age of forty, the revelation came to him from Allah. The first thing from the revelation with which he started was the veridical dreams. He seldom used to see dreams except that they manifested true like the crack of dawn. Then, Allah endeared to him retreat, which is a singularity from the anarchic community in his beliefs and worship. He used to retreat to the cave of Hira, a mountain on the right of the entrant to Mecca by way of Al-Sharai’, and meditate therein until the revelation descended on him there. Gabriel came and said: “Read”. He said: (I am no reader) – i.e: I am not good at reading – and in the third instance, Gabriel said to him: “Read in the name of your Lord Who created- Created man out of a clot of congealed blood. Read and your Lord is Most Bountiful- He Who taught by the pen- Taught man that which he knew not”. The Prophet went back to his family, his heart shivering because he saw a matter of great magnitude, to which he is not used to before. He walked in on Khadija and told her, breaking the news to her: (I was afraid for myself). She said: "Allah shall never subject you to any indignity..., for you always maintain your ties with those of your kin, and you are always generous in giving; you are diligent, and you seek what others regard as unattainable; you cool the eyes of your guest, and you lend your support to those who seek justice and redress”. She elucidated, may Allah be pleased with her, his beautiful deeds, in that the wisdom of Allah will not allow disgrace and shame to follow qualities like these. By the revelation of these verses to Mohammed, he became a Prophet. Almighty Allah then revealed: "O you wrapped up (in the cloak). Arise and deliver your warning. And your Lord do magnify. And your garments keep free from stain. And all abomination shun”.
Thus, he became a Prophet and Messenger to both Jinn and Mankind. He called to Allah, brought good tidings and warned exclusively and generally. He warned his close relatives, then the rest of creation, until Allah perfected through him the religion, completed his grace on the faithful, Proclaimed his religion and Helped it to prevail. He is the best to protect and the best to help. In this Allah Almighty says: “Allah did confer a great favour on the believers, when He sent among them an Apostle from among themselves, rehearsing unto them the Signs of Allah, sanctifying them, and instructing them in Scripture and Wisdom, while, before that, they had been in manifest error”.
May Allah grant you and me grace in the Glorious Quran, and benefit us from what is therein of verses and reminders. I say this and ask forgiveness from Allah for me and you from every sin, so ask forgiveness of Him, He is Oft-Forgiving, Oft-Merciful.
The Second Sermon
Praise be to Allah manifold, as He commanded, and I am grateful to Him. He caused to be declared to add more favors to those who are grateful, and I bear witness that there is no god but Allah, alone with no partner, even though they dislike it: those who join others in worship with Him and disbelieve. And I bear witness that Mohammed is His servant and Messenger, the leader of mankind, the intercessor and whose intercession is granted the Day of Gathering, may Allah send his peace and blessings upon him, his family, his Companions and those who follow them in truth.
In what is to follow:
O people, fear Allah the Almighty and know that: to achieve the testimony that there is no god but Allah, that the person be faithful to Allah in worship, and to achieve the testimony that Mohammed is the Messenger of Allah, that the person be diligent in following the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him. That is why some of our predecessors said that the human being on the day of Resurrection is asked why and how. He is asked why he did such and such, and how he did such and such. It is necessary to ask for the cause and the modality. A lot of Muslims, if we do not say most of them, during this month, hold on the twelfth night a ceremony they celebrate, claiming that it is the night of the birth of the Prophet, peace and blessings be upon him.
From my stance, I say, on the authority of Allah I say, and I seek help from Allah the Almighty for what I say, that we are required as an assembly of Muslims to analyze this habit, to which some or most of the Muslims have grown accustomed to. We analyze it from the historical and legal terms. From the historical perspective, it has not been confirmed that the birth of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, was on the twelfth night. These are history books in your hands, where Historians have disagreed over when the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, was born. Some say he was born on the second night of this month, some of them say he was born on the seventh night of it, some of them say that he was born on the ninth night of it, some of them say he was born on the tenth night of it, some of them say he was born on the twelfth night of it, some of them say he was born on the seventeenth night of it and some of them say he was born on the night of twenty-second of this month. These many conflicting claims indicate that those who claimed he was born on the twelfth night have no historical basis to refer to. That is why some modern astronomers confirmed that he was born on the night of the ninth of this month, a scientific investigation. Therefore, this negates that the night of the birth of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, is the twelfth night of this month. While on the legitimate side, we ask those who hold this tradition, do they do it in worship of Allah, sincerity to Him, to honor the Prophet, peace be upon him, adoration to him, celebrate it in memory of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, or in imitation of the Christians who took who took the birth of Jesus the son of Mary a feast. We ask them for what purposes did they hold it. If they say that they hold it in worship to Allah and glorification to Him, we then said: you affirmed that it was worship, which is of the religion of Allah, and that Allah has perfected His religion, when he revealed to Prophet, peace be upon him “this day have I perfected your religion for you” [Al-Ma’idah, 3]. If the religion of Allah was perfect, then show us this habit in the Book of Allah, or show it to us in the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, or it in the words of the righteous successors. If it were not in the Book of Allah, the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him or in the words of his righteous successors, then it is not of the religion of Allah in anything. Therefore, it is not befitting to be a worship of Allah the Almighty. And if you say we hold it in honor to the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, and adoration for him, we then say yes to what you intended. Yes, a person intending veneration for the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, and it is a duty to venerate the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, greater than venerating any other human being, even greater than his own parents, his sons and those who have rights on him, because there is no greater right on a human being than that of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, on his nation. But how is his veneration going to be, if not by paying respect to him, committing to his rulings and not put himself ahead of him. Is it out of politeness to instigate rulings in the religion of the Messenger of Allah, which he did not instigate? Is it out of reverence to the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, for someone to put himself forward in the sight of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him? While Allah says: “O you who believe! Put not yourselves forward before Allah and His Messenger, but fear Allah, for Allah is He Who hears and knows all things. O you who believe! Raise not your voices above the voice of the Prophet.” [Al-Hujurat, 2]. It is not befitting the reverence and politeness towards a Prophet for a person to resort to his rulings by that which is not within them. Rather, it is impoliteness and irreverence towards the Messenger of Allah. If they say: we are doing so to keep alive the memory of the Messenger of Allah, we say to them: keeping alive his memory for a purpose that is beloved to Allah, is beloved to every believer, but what is the way to immortalize the memory of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, while every believer must remember the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, in every act of worship he performs. That is because all acts of worship are based on two issues: sincerity to Allah peace and following the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him. If you evoke these two issues in your worship, this means that you are not worshiping Allah in words and actions unless you remember the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, and this is the good remembrance you are commanded, which is integral in the establishment of your religion. The remembrance is not to hold a celebration far away from the legislation, devoid of textual revelation pointing out to it. It is a crude remembrance, which one evokes in the heat of the moment then relegate it to the folds of neglect afterwards. The remembrance of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, is present in the heart of every believer when he performs any act of worship, because the one who instigated it and clarified it to people is the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him. You remember him in every act of worship; you remember that you are following him, that he is in front of you in the worship and that he is the link between you and the Almighty Allah, making clear the law of Allah. If they say: we do it in imitation of the Christians so that they do not think that we are not revering our Prophet, while they venerate the Prophet of Allah, Jesus the son of Mary, by immortalizing his birth anniversary through holding celebrations to this end. We say to them: what you have done is evil, for having as role models in this matter what the Christians instigated with regard to the Prophet Jesus, the son of Mary, peace be upon him. And since you were eager to imitate the Christians in all that they do with regard to the Prophet Jesus, peace be upon him, then say: we imitate them and say that Mohammed is the Son of Allah Almighty, Allah forbids. Christians said that Christ is the Son of Allah, is it possible for any Muslim to say that Mohammed is the Son of Allah? Nay! but we both say that we do not imitate the Christians is what is not prescribe by Allah and His Messenger in this wholesome message, the message of the Prophet, peace be upon him, and we disclaim the Christians in saying that Jesus, the son of Mary, is the Son of Allah. But, we say that Jesus, the son of Mary, is a creature among the Almighty Allah's creatures “The similitude of Jesus before Allah is as that of Adam; He created him from dust, then said to him: "Be". And he was.” [Al-Imran: 59]. The entire universe belongs to Allah, and Christ, the son of Mary, is part of this universe and is a Prophet of Allah, who foretold the coming of Mohammed, peace be upon him. He said to his people: "O Children of Israel! I am the apostle of Allah (sent) to you, confirming the Law (which came) before me, and giving Glad Tidings of a Messenger to come after me, whose name shall be Ahmad”, but the Christians did not accept this glad tiding and did not believe Jesus in it, therefore when Mohammed, peace be upon him, came to them with clear signs, they said this is but sorcery manifest.
Dear brothers, after these historical and legal analyses of the practice that most Muslims we grown accustomed to, we reach the conclusion that it is a fad among fads, because it has been taken as religion and everything taken as religion without proof of legitimacy from Allah and His Messenger, it is all heresy, for the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, says: "Beware of newly invented matters, for every innovation is misguidance and every misguidance in the hell fire". We discussed this, elaborated on it and talked at some length, because many of the people who come to this country from a country, where they are used to this innovation, may condemn and say why not do it in this country and perhaps they are in fact ignorant, from their part, about this innovation and we tell them that it is not done in this country; we are proud of it, cherish it and we thank Allah who has guided us to the Sunnah of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him. We ask Allah to guide our Muslim brothers to avoid this innovation and to bless them with the veneration of the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him, as he should be venerated and to be polite in his regard, so that they do not come forward between his hands and legislate in the law that which he did not prescribe. We hope that our brothers, who come to us from those countries, understand correctly that this innovation is not right, but it is astray as described by the Messenger of Allah, peace be upon him. But we expect from them, and charge them, with the responsibility to be advocates of reform and good to their people, when they go back to them so that Allah may benefit by them and to guide at their hands those who got involved in this innovation. Allah the Almighty is the one who guides whom He wills to a straight path. Whoever wants the truth with a sincere heart and good faith, and follow the wisdom, he be guided to them, Allah willing. I ask Allah the Almighty to guide us all to His straight Path, and bless us with sincerity to Him, with following His Messenger, and make us guided guides and reformer advocates. And I ask Him to show us the truth as such and help us to follow it, and show us the falsehood as such and help us to avoid it, and I ask Him to make us among those who favor the words of Allah and His Messenger over the words of everyone else. I ask Him to make us among those who arbitrate Allah and His Messenger, even over themselves, and I ask Him to make us neither from the fanatics to their own likings not the supporters of their own views without right. I ask him to guide all the Muslims all to that which is good and righteous; He is the Oft-Generous, Oft-Giving. O Muslims “Allah commands justice, the doing of good, and liberality to kith and kin, and He forbids all shameful deeds, and injustice and rebellion: He instructs you, that you may receive admonition. Fulfil the Covenant of Allah when you have entered into it, and break not your oaths after you have confirmed them; indeed you have made Allah your surety; for Allah knows all that you do.” [An-Nahl, 90, 91]. And remember Allah the Almighty, He will remember you and give grace to Him for His bounties, He will give you more, and remembrance of Allah is no doubt the greatest thing in life. And Allah knows the deeds that you do.