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ISLAM A WORSHIP AND KINDNESS

IN THE NAME OF ALLAH, THE BENEFICIENT, THE MERCIFUL

BEING THE FOURTH KHUTBAH FOR THE MONTH OF MUHARRAM, DATED 24TH MUHARRAM 1445AH (11TH AUGUST, 2023CE)

TOPIC: ISLAM IS WORSHIP AND KINDNESS

THE FIRST SERMON

All Praises belong to Allah, Lord of the worlds, who sent His Messenger with guidance and the true religion to make it prevail over all religions, even if the polytheists hate it. And He is the One Who has perfected our religion for us, and He has completed His Favor on us and has choosen Islaam for us as the religion that He is pleased with. He says in His Perfect Revelation: (الْيَوْمَ أَكْمَلْتُ لَكُمْ دِينَكُمْ وَأَتْمَمْتُ عَلَيْكُمْ نِعْمَتِي وَرَضِيتُ لَكُمُ الْإِسْلَامَ دِينًا) “This day, I have perfected your religion for you, completed My Favour upon you, and have chosen for you Islam as your religion.” (Al-Maa’idah: 3). We praise Him, Glorified and Exalted He is, we thank Him we believe in Him and depend on, and put our trust in Him. I bear witness that there is no god worthy of worship except Allah. He has no partner. And I bear witness that our Master Muhammad is His servant and His Messenger. He delivered the message, he fulfilled the trust, he admonished the ummah, and Allah removed, through him, the confusion (of humanity), and he strived in the way of his Lord as he should until the Certainty (death) came to him. O Allah, may Your blessings and peace of be upon him, his family, his companions, and those who follow them in kindness until the Day of Judgment.

O servants of Allah! I advise you and myself to fear Allah Almighty, secretly and openly, and know that piety is the desired purpose of all acts of worship and good deeds according to His saying, Glory be to Him: (يَا أَيُّهَا النَّاسُ اعْبُدُوا رَبَّكُمُ الَّذِي خَلَقَكُمْ وَالَّذِينَ مِنْ قَبْلِكُمْ لَعَلَّكُمْ تَتَّقُونَ)  “O people, worship your Lord, who created you and those before you, so that you may attain piety” (Al-Baqarah: 21).

Dear Muslims! This is the fourth and last meeting in the month of Muharram, and the topic of our sermon today revolves around: Islam is worship and kindness.

The definition of Islaam

Brothers in Faith! You should know that Islaam – as defined by the martyr, Imam Hassan al-Banna, may Allah grant him abundant mercy – is a comprehensive system that deals with all aspects of life. It is a state and a homeland or a government and a nation, and it is moral character and strength or mercy and justice, and it is civilization and law, or knowledge and adjudication, and it is material and wealth or gain and wealth, it is jihaad and an invitation, or an army and an idea, just as it is a sincere belief and correct worship, all in equal measure. (From Majmuu’atur Rasaail of Imaam al-Banna).

The definition of worship:

Brothers in Islam! Lovers of the Prophet of the Adnan lineage, may Allah bless him and grant him peace, the concept of worship in Islaam is that it is a comprehensive name for everything that Allah Ta’alaa loves and is pleased with in words and actions, both outward and inward, and it involves religious abidance and love; It entails submission to Allah Ta’alaa in addition to love for Him, and this comprehensive meaning of worship in Islaam is the content of the call of the Messengers, peace be upon them all, and it is one of their consistent unchanging messages throughout history. There is not one messenger that did not instruct his people to worship Allah. Allah Ta’alaa says: (وَمَا أَرْسَلْنَا مِنْ قَبْلِكَ مِنْ رَسُولٍ إِلَّا نُوحِي إِلَيْهِ أَنَّهُ لَا إِلَهَ إِلَّا أَنَا فَاعْبُدُونِ) “And We did not send any Messenger before you (O Muhammad SAW) but We inspired him (saying): La ilaha illa Ana [none has the right to be worshipped but I (Allah)], so worship Me (Alone and none else).” (Al-Anbiyaa: 25).

Definition of kindness linguistically:

Dear listeners! The origin of the word kindness in the language is from good, and kindness is the opposite of wrong. It is said: A good man, a good doer. That is, he is very benevolent, and the Prophet – peace and blessings of Allah be upon him – explained the goodness in the well-known hadith narrated by Umar ibn Khattaab – may Allah be pleased with him – when Jibreel asked the Messenger of Allah – upon him be blessings and peace – about goodness, and he answered by saying: “To worship Allah as if you see Him. And if you do not If you see him, he sees you).

What is meant by goodness here is sincerity, and a person does not attain goodness unless he is a true Muslim, and that he believes in Allah with a sincere faith, and his heart is settled with faith. It is part of goodness to feel that Allah is watching one. If he wants to pray, he feels the watchfulness of Allah, so he prays with complete presence and humility.

Goodness in upholding the rights of all creatures, and this type of goodness is achieved through kindness to parents, as well as upholding ties of kinship, kindness in honoring the guest, kindness in helping the poor, and kindness in this regard includes kindness to animals. It has been narrated from the noble prophet (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) that he said: “While a man was walking along a road and was very thirsty, he found a water spring and went down into it and drank. Then he came out and saw a panting dog eating dirt out of thirst. The man said, “This dog is overwhelmed by thirst like the one that had overwhelmed me.” He went down to the well, filled his shoe, then took the dog by its mouth and gave the it to drink. Then Allah appreciated him and forgave him. They said, “O Messenger of Allah.”so, we have a reward for animals? He said, “There is a reward in (doing good to) everything with a wet liver.”

Comprehensiveness of worship:

Brothers of Islam! When we talk about the comprehensivenessof worship, we focus on several areas, including:

The first area: The relationship between Allah Almighty and His servant

Brothers of Islaam! Allah Almighty has commanded us to perform many acts of worship, the greatest of which is the five pillars that Allah Ta’alaa made mandatory upon us: that we acknowledge Him, Glory be to Him, with Lordship and being the only One deserving of worship. It is Allah Ta’alaa that created all creatures just so that they worship and obey only Him. So, the command came in many verses: (وَاعْبُدُوا اللَّهَ وَلَا تُشْرِكُوا بِهِ شَيْئًا) “Worship Allah and join none with Him in worship”(An-Nisaa: 36). And He said, Glorified He is: (يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا ارْكَعُوا وَاسْجُدُوا وَاعْبُدُوا رَبَّكُمْ وَافْعَلُوا الْخَيْرَ لَعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ) “O you who have believed, bow down and prostrate and worship your Lord, and do good that you may be successful” (Al-Hajj: 77).

The second area is the relationship between you and your muslim brother:

Islaam is not only a sanctuary, but rather it is a religion and a debt, and know that the relationship between you and your muslim brother is one of the greatest means worship when you are sincere in it for Allah Almighty, so everything that is commanded by the Sharee’ah, whether it is from the recommended rites or from other human activities, if the one who does it seeks the face of Allah, Glory be to Him, then it is worship, whether the Lawgiver specifies a specific reward for it, or commanded it absolutely without specifying a reward. And this is part of Allah’s Favour and Mercy with His servants.

The third area is building the universe and striving to seek sustenance is worship:

There is no doubt that the worship of Allah is the origin and foundation, as the Almighty, the Most Glorified says: (وَمَا خَلَقْتُ الْجِنَّ وَالْإِنسَ إِلَّا لِيَعْبُدُونِ) “And I did not create the jinn and mankind except that they should worship Me” (Al-Dhaariyaat: 56). But the intended worship by virtue of the Qur’anic text is that the worshiping person must be a productive worker, considering that hard work is the way to make the individual and the jama’ah happy. Concerning this, Allah Ta’alaa, Glorified He is, says: (الَّذِينَ إِن مَّكَّنَّاهُمْ فِي الْأَرْضِ أَقَامُوا الصَّلَاةَ وَآتَوُا الزَّكَاةَ وَأَمَرُوا بِالْمَعْرُوفِ وَنَهَوْا عَنِ الْمُنكَرِ وَلِلَّهِ عَاقِبَةُ الْأُمُورِ) “Those (Muslim rulers) who, if We give them power in the land, (they) order for Iqamat-as-Salat. [i.e. to perform the five compulsory congregational Salat (prayers) (the males in mosques)], to pay the Zakat and they enjoin Al-Ma’ruf (i.e. Islamic Monotheism and all that Islam orders one to do), and forbid Al-Munkar (i.e. disbelief, polytheism and all that Islam has forbidden) [i.e. they make the Qur’an as the law of their country in all the spheres of life]. And with Allah rests the end of (all) matters (of creatures).” (Al-Hajj: 41).

He also says: (وَابْتَغِ فِيمَا آتَاكَ اللَّهُ الدَّارَ الْآخِرَةَ وَلَا تَنسَ نَصِيبَكَ مِنَ الدُّنْيَا وَأَحْسِن كَمَا أَحْسَنَ اللَّهُ إِلَيْكَ وَلَا تَبْغِ الْفَسَادَ فِي الْأَرْضِ إِنَّ اللَّهَ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُفْسِدِينَ) “But seek, with that (wealth) which Allah has bestowed on you, the home of the Hereafter, and forget not your portion of legal enjoyment in this world, and do good as Allah has been good to you, and seek not mischief in the land. Verily, Allah likes not the Mufsidun (those who commit great crimes and sins, oppressors, tyrants, mischief-makers, corrupts).” (Al-Qasas: 77). And He says, Glorified He is: (فَإِذَا قُضِيَتِ الصَّلَاةُ فَانتَشِرُوا فِي الْأَرْضِ وَابْتَغُوا مِن فَضْلِ اللَّهِ وَاذْكُرُوا اللَّهَ كَثِيرًا لَّعَلَّكُمْ تُفْلِحُونَ) ” Then when the (Jumu’ah) Salat (prayer) is finished, you may disperse through the land, and seek the Bounty of Allah (by working, etc.), and remember Allah much, that you may be successful.” (Al-Jumu’ah: 10).

Effort in seeking sustenance is an act of worship:

This viewpoint is evidenced by many hadiths, some of which we’ll mention: On the authority of Ka’b ibn ‘Ujrah – may Allah be pleased with him – he said: “A man passed by the Prophet (Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon him) and the companions of the Messenger of Allah (Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon him) noticed his stamina and vigor that amazing to them, so they said: “O Messenger of Allah, if only this was being done in the way of Allah!” The Messenger of Allah (Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “And is what is done in the way of Allah only those who fight? If he went out striving for the sake of his young child, then it is in the way of Allah, and if he went out striving for the sake of his two elderly parents, then he is in the way of Allah, and if he strives to provide for himself, then he is in the way of Allah, but if he goes out to show off and boast, then he is in the path of Shaytaan.

The fourth area is the comprehensiveness of worship in the treatment of non-Muslims:

And know, may Allah bless you, that (the manner of) interaction with non-muslims is an act of worship from the core of the Islamic creed, since it is based on the most binding bonds of faith – showing loyalty and cutting off for the sake of Allah. Loyalty and cutting off for Allah’s sake are the most binding bonds of faith, as it is narrated on the authority of Ibn Abbaas that he said: “The Messenger of Allah, Prophet (Peace and Blessings of Allah be upon him) said to Abu Dhar, “O Abu Dhar, which bonds of faith are the closest?” He said: Allah and His Messenger know best! He said: “The strongest bonds of faith: loyalty for the sake of Allah, and enmity for the sake of Allah, loving for the sake of Allah, and hatred for the sake of Allah Ta’alaa”.

Being kind to non-Muslims and not attacking them unjustly is worship:

Kindness to non-Muslims in Islamic societies is one of the important means of inviting them (to Islaam). Islaam has legislated good treatment for non-Muslims who are dhimmis and trustworthy. The Almighty said: (لا يَنْهَاكُمُ اللَّهُ عَنِ الَّذِينَ لَمْ يُقَاتِلُوكُمْ فِي الدِّينِ وَلَمْ يُخْرِجُوكُم مِّن دِيَارِكُمْ أَن تَبَرُّوهُمْ وَتُقْسِطُوا إِلَيْهِمْ إِنَّ اللَّهَ يُحِبُّ الْمُقْسِطِينَ) Allah does not forbid you from dealing kindly and fairly with those who have neither fought nor driven you out of your homes. Surely Allah loves those who are fair.” (Al-Mumtahanah : 8).

We’ll limit ourselves to this much due to the constraint of time and space. I say all these, I ask forgiveness from Allah Almighty for you and for me. So, seek His forgiveness and repent unto Him, for He is the Most-Forgiving, the Most-Merciful.

THE SECOND SERMON:

All Praises are due to Allah, and prayers of blessings and peace be upon the Messenger of Allah, his family, companions, and all those who followed him.

Thereafter,

Dear servants of Allah, the Almighty says in His magnificent Book: (كُلَّمَا أَوْقَدُوا نَارًا لِلْحَرْبِ أَطْفَأَهَا اللَّهُ وَيَسْعَوْنَ فِي الْأَرْضِ فَسَادًا وَاللَّهُ لَا يُحِبُّ الْمُفْسِدِينَ) Whenever they kindle the fire of war, Allah puts it out. And they strive to spread corruption in the land. And Allah does not like corruptors. [Al-Ma’idah: 64]. Based on the apparent meaning of this verse in addition to the linguistic meaning, that obviously does not require any exegetical commentary to understand its meaning, it appears clearly that Allah, the Almighty informs that He extinguishes the fire for war whenever the corruptors ignite it, and He clearly says that He does not like the corruptors who kindle the fire for war. Thus, within the scope of this noble verse and others like it in the Book of Allah, the Exalted, we hereby call upon the President of Nigeria, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who is currently the President of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), to address the issue of the military coup that took place in Niger last month, July 26, 2023, with wisdom, so that the issue does not lead to war in Africa. We have noted that ECOWAS is requesting the return of ousted President Mohamed Bazoum to power. That request may happen, Allah’s willing, but they should not take the path of violence and war because war is destructive and non-constructive. Look at what is happening between Russia and Ukraine presently. A whole year and some months have passed since the war. The war destroyed countless souls, and they corrupted the country and the lands to the extent that it’s not possible to fix what have been destroyed within the next fifty years. In Nigeria, we face many internal challenges economically, security wise, socially, educationally, and other internal problems that we have been suffering from for a long time and we do not want to add war to it.

In addition, directing our focus to Lagos State, where Muslims demand their legal and democratic rights from the Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Sanwo-olu and his deputy, Dr. Abdul-Qadir Hamzat, to reconsider the list of commissioners who will work with him for the next four years. Out of the 39 names for commissioners, only eight (8) are Muslims, a number which is not up to 20%. This is a clear injustice against Muslims and the Muslims of Lagos who are more than 60%. The Muslim scholars in Lagos State have held a press conference calling for this democratic legal right.

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