Praise be to Allah who granted us faith, guided us to Islam, and made us from the followers of Muhammad peace be upon him, his family, his righteous Companions, and those who follow them until the day when Allah resurrects the creatures.
Honorable Muslims, in the previous lesson we spoke about the first right due for Muslims which is the right of Allah (Glory be to Him).
We knew that the right of Allah (Glory be to Him) is one of the greatest rights that a Muslim cannot ignore. One of the most important rights is: Unifying Him (may He be Glorified and Exalted) as we referred to His Oneness in lordship, Names and Attributes. In this lesson we shall continue the issues related to monotheism. Unification of divinity and worship which is the objective of creating jinn and humans as Allah (may He be Exalted) says: "And I (Allâh) created not the jinn and mankind except that they should worship Me (Alone)." Allah (He may be Glorified) says: "So worship Allâh (Alone) by doing religious deeds sincerely for Allâh’s sake only." Allah (He may be Glorified) says: "You (Alone) we worship, and You (Alone) we ask for help (for each and everything)." Allah (Exalted be He) says: "So worship Him (O Muhammad peace be upon him) and put your trust in Him." Allah (He may be Glorified) says: "O mankind! Worship your Lord (Allâh), Who created you and those who were before you so that you may become Al-Muttaqûn (the pious). * Who has made the earth a resting place for you, and the sky as a canopy, and sent down water (rain) from the sky and brought forth therewith fruits as a provision for you. Then do not set up rivals to Allâh (in worship) while you know (that He Alone has the right to be worshipped)." Allah (Exalted be He) says: "And verily, We have sent among every Ummah (community, nation) a Messenger (proclaiming): “Worship Allâh (Alone), and avoid (or keep away from) Tâghût (all false deities i.e. do not worship Tâghût besides Allâh).” Then of them were some whom Allâh guided, and of them were some upon whom the straying was justified. So travel through the land and see what was the end of those who denied (the truth)." Allah (Exalted be He) says: "And We did not send any Messenger before you (O Muhammad peace be upon him) but We revealed to him (saying): Lâ ilâha illa Ana [none has the right to be worshipped but I (Allâh)], so worship Me (Alone and none else)." Allah (Exalted be He) says: "Verily, I am Allâh! Lâ ilâha illa Ana (none has the right to be worshipped but I), so worship Me." Allah (May He be Exalted) says: "The Lord of the heavens and the earth, and all that is between them, so worship Him (Alone) and be constant and patient in His worship. Do you know of any who is similar to Him? (of course none is similar or co-equal or comparable to Him, and He has none as partner with Him). [There is nothing like Him and He is the All-Hearer, the All-Seer]." Allah (Exalted be He) says: "And worship your Lord until there comes to you the certainty (i.e. death)."
All these Ayahs confirm the right of Allah to be worshipped on earth and stating that man is legally competent to do so. Moreover messengers were not sent except for conveying this divinity as Allah (Exalted be He) says in the previous Ayah which reads: "And We did not send any Messenger before you (O Muhammad peace be upon him) but We revealed to him (saying): Lâ ilâha illa Ana [none has the right to be worshipped but I (Allâh)], so worship Me (Alone and none else)."
Allah (He may be Glorified) says about Noah (peace be upon him): "And indeed We sent Nûh (Noah) to his people, and he said: “O my people! Worship Allâh! You have no other Ilâh (God) but Him (Islâmic Monotheism). Will you not then be afraid (of Him i.e. of His punishment because of worshipping others besides Him)?" He also says to Hud (peace be upon him): "Worship Allâh! You have no other Ilâh (God) but Him (Islâmic Monotheism)." He also says to Salih (peace be upon him): "Worship Allâh! You have no other Ilâh (God) but Him (Islâmic Monotheism)." Jethro (peace be upon him) said to his people: "Worship Allâh! You have no other Ilâh (God) but Him (Islâmic Monotheism)." And Abraham (Ibrahim) (peace be upon him) said: "Verily, I have turned my face towards Him Who has created the heavens and the earth Hanîf, (Islâmic Monotheism, i.e. worshipping none but Allâh Alone), and I am not of the polytheists.”
Dear Muslim, this right was mentioned clearly in the Sunnah as was reported by Al Bukhari and Muslim in their Sahih (books of authentic Hadiths) on the authority of Mu`adh ibn Jabal (may Allah be pleased with him) who said: I was riding on a mount behind the Prophet (peace be upon him). Thereupon he said to me: “O Mu`adh, Do you know what Allah’s Right upon His servants is? and what the right of His Servants on Him is?” I said: Allah and His Messenger know best?
He said: "Allah's right on His Servants is that they should worship Him (Alone) and should not worship any besides Him. And servants’ right on Allah is that He shall never torture him who worships none besides Him." I said: O Messenger of Allah, Should I not inform the people of this good news? He said: "Do not inform them of it, lest they should depend on it (absolutely)."
Al Bukhari and Muslim reported on the authority of Ibn `Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) that when the Prophet (peace be upon him) sent Mu`adh to Yemen, he said to him: "You shall go to a group of people from the Scriptures, so when go to them, first of all invite them to the testimony of there is no god but Allah." In another narration: "Call them to the unity of Allah," and in another narration: "to worship Allah alone."
So, the right entailed to Allah (Exalted be He) is to worship Him as Shaykh Al Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah bestow mercy on his soul) defined: "Worship is a word that includes all things that Allah loves and things that please Him whether sayings or inward and outward actions).
Therefore, it includes all sayings and actions of a person whether acts of the heart or acts of organs and whether these acts are inward or outward.
Worship in this concept is (the Oneness of Worship) which is the meaning of “La ilaha illa Allah” (there is no deity but Allah). This monotheism is the first ordinance due on a fully competent person as it is also the first act to embrace Islam, the last thing that a Muslim utters in the world, the message that was written in all Divine Books, and the message of all messengers as was mentioned in the previous Ayahs.
Each Surah in the Glorious Qur'an calls to oneness either frankly or implicitly. Shaykh Al Islam Ibn Taymiyah (may Allah bestow mercy on his soul) said: (So, the entire religion is included in worship)
This means: Every act must emerge from worshipping Allah and submission to Him. So, the ordinances of Allah (Exalted be He) should be fulfilled, what He prohibited should be avoided, and what He commanded you to believe in must be done whether these acts are minor or major. Thus, monotheism is built on directing all kinds of worship to Allah alone and showing sincerity to Him whether in beliefs, sayings, or actions.
These acts of worship trace back to four kinds; they are as follows:
1- The first kind is: Acts of worship related to the heart.
2- The second kind is: Verbal acts of worship related to the tongue.
3- The third kind is: Actual acts of worship related to the body organs.
4- The fourth kind is: Financial acts of worship related to money.
In the following, we shall handle these kinds with more details and examples:
1- The first kind is: Acts of worship related to the heart alone:
This kind is the most important of all as it is the basis for other kinds, for example:
1- Affection: It is meant for loving Allah, which is the highest kind of affection and the most beneficial. The faith of a servant is not valid without it and will not be correct except when a person follows that way. Allah (May He be Exalted) says: "And of mankind are some who take (for worship) others besides Allâh as rivals (to Allâh). They love them as they love Allâh." The Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said: "Whoever possesses the following three qualities will have the sweetness (delight) of faith: 1- The one to whom Allah and His Messenger becomes dearer than anything else. 2- Who loves a person and he loves him only for Allah's sake. 3- Who hates to revert to Atheism (disbelief) as he hates to be thrown into the fire."
The true affection is that pushes a person to act according to things that please his Lord (may He be Glorified and Exalted). A person who disagree with affection will be contradicting himself and sign of the truthfulness of this affection is to follow Muhammad (peace be upon him). Allah (May He be Exalted) says: "Say (O Muhammad peace be upon him to mankind): “If you (really) love Allâh then follow me (i.e. accept Islâmic Monotheism, follow the Qur’ân and the Sunnah), Allâh will love you and forgive you your sins.”
Hence, the faith of a person will not be complete until he practices this affection which has priority over all other kinds of affections, even though the love of one's parents, oneself, and the love for all people as was authentically reported in the Hadith of the Prophet (peace be upon him).
2- Fear: The meaning is to fear Allah (Glory be to Him): It is one of the most important acts of worship related to the heart. Allah (Exalted be He) says: "so fear them not, but fear Me, if you are (true) believers." Allah (Glory be to Him) says: "Do you fear them? Allâh has more right that you should fear Him." Allah (Glory be to Him) says: "Therefore fear not men but fear Me (O Jews) and sell not My Verses for a miserable price." Allah (Glory be to Him) says: "But for him who fears the standing before his Lord, there will be two Gardens (i.e. in Paradise)."
Among other Ayahs that indicate to that great act of worship which cannot be claimed only be tongue, but it is a feeling in the heart that makes a person watchful against what he fears. Therefore, who fears Allah will take a shield from Him, act to please Him, and stay away from things that may bring about His wrath and angry. Imam Ibn Al Qayyim (may Allah bestow mercy on his soul) said: (The praised sincere fear is the fear which makes a barrier between a person and the prohibitions of Allah (Glory be to Him).
3- Hope: which is looking forward to the mercy of Allah (Exalted be He), His Favor, Bounty, and His Generosity. It is of three kinds:
A- A hope from someone who obeys Allah, so he awaits the reward.
B- A hope from a person who had committed sins then repented of his sins, so he hopes for the pardon and forgiveness of Allah.
Those two kinds are laudable.
C- A hope from a person who exceeds the limits of Allah and commits sins; in this case he hopes for the Mercy of Allah (Exalted be He) without actions and this is a false hope. A true hope is not valid except it is accompanied by good deeds. Allah (Exalted be He) says: "So whoever hopes for the Meeting with his Lord, let him work righteousness and associate none as a partner in the worship of his Lord.” Allah (Glory be to Him) says: "Verily, those who have believed, and those who have emigrated (for Allâh’s Religion) and have striven hard in the Way of Allâh, all these hope for Allâh’s Mercy. And Allâh is Oft-Forgiving, Most-Merciful."
Dear Muslim brother: We have to feel these great meanings with our hearts, embody them in our practice, and their impact should be manifested in our organs, our movements, and silence, for the sake of Allah (Exalted be He), fearing of His Punishment, and hoping for His Mercy perhaps Allah (may He be Praised and Glorified) may make us from those about whom Allah says: "hope for His Mercy and fear His Torment."
I ask Allah (Exalted be He) to increase our lover for Him, fear of Him, and our obedience to Him for He is All Respondent and the only One who is sought for help. We shall continue our speech in the following lesson with the willing of Allah.