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Thursday, March 6, 2014

THE DUTIES OF MUSLIMS TOWARDS THE NOBLE QUR’AN

All praise is due to Allah, the lord of the worlds, and it suffices. He revealed the book as mercy, criterion, and guidance and as the strong rope. He who grips it succeeds in life and afterlife. He who turns away from it perishes till he will end up in the fire. May Allah save us from evil and obedience to desire. I bear witness that there is no deity worthy to be worship except Him alone, without partner. I equally bear witness that our leader and our master, Muhammad is his servant and messenger. O Allah shower your peace and blessing upon Muhammad (SAW), his wives- mothers of the faithful, his noble companions and those who follow them in righteous till the Day of Recompense. Thereafter, O servant of Allaah, I admonish you and myself to fear Allaah, following His injunction: “" ...وَتَزَوَّدُوا فَإِنَّ خَيْرَ الزَّادِ التَّقْوَى ..." (البقرة : 197 ) And take provisions, but indeed, the best provision is fear of Allah. . Q3:102 My brothers and sisters in faith, this is the first sermon in the month of Jumaadal-Ula and we shall be discussing “Duties of Muslims towards the Qur’an” having talked about the scientific miracles of the noble qur’an. Brothers in Islam, if we recognize the distinguishing qualities and uniqueness of the Qur’an what then is our duties towards the Qur’an? - We must love the Qur’an and accord it the maximum respect it deserve as being the word of Allah- the best and most truthful words. - We must read, recite and reflect over its verses and messages. - We must follow the legal provisions of the Qur’an including its laws and manners. ‘Aishah was asked about the character of the Prophet peace be upon him, and she replied: “His character is the Qur’an”. The hadith means that the Prophet is the practical representation of the laws of the Qur’an, he perfectly displayed complete obedience to the Qur’an, the exemplary model for everyone of us as said by Allah thus: {لَقَدْ كَانَ لَكُمْ فِي رَسُولِ اللَّهِ أُسْوَةٌ حَسَنَةٌ لِمَنْ كَانَ يَرْجُو اللَّهَ وَالْيَوْمَ الْآخِرَ وَذَكَرَ اللَّهَ كَثِيرًا} [الأحزاب: 21] . There has certainly been for you in the Messenger of Allah an excellent pattern for anyone whose hope is in Allah and the Last Day and [who] remembers Allah often.(33:21) Taking it from this point, we are duty bound towards this great book of Allah which has been qualified with several superlative qualities thus: " وَلَقَدْ آتَيْنَاكَ سَبْعًا مِنَ الْمَثَانِي وَالْقُرْآنَ الْعَظِيمَ " ( الحجر : 87 ) And We have certainly given you, [O Muhammad], seven of the often repeated [verses] and the great Qur'an. " إِنَّ الَّذِينَ كَفَرُوا بِالذِّكْرِ لَمَّا جَاءَهُمْ وَإِنَّهُ لَكِتَابٌ عَزِيزٌ " (فصِّلتْ : 41) Indeed, those who disbelieve in the message after it has come to them... And indeed, it is a mighty Book. (41: 41) " بَلْ هُوَ قُرْآنٌ مَجِيدٌ " ( البروج :21 ) But this is an honored Qur'an (85: 21) " إِنَّهُ لَقُرْآنٌ كَرِيمٌ ( الْواقعة : 77 ) Indeed, it is a noble Qur'an (56:77) Our duties to the noble qur’an: 1- Proper recitation and listening: The injunction over proper recitation is found in the Qur’an thus: “And recite the Qur'an in slow, measured rhythmic tones … “ ("... وَرَتِّلِ الْقُرْآنَ تَرْتِيلًا ( الْمُزَمِّل :4)) Recitation with steady calmness and clear pronunciation of every letter and diacritical marks as did the Prophet (pbuh) his companions and those who came after them. It is imperative that we perfect our ability to recite the qur’an by taking advantage of the pool of opportunities that surround us that can aid the recitation and take after any reciter of your choice through cassettes or CDs, radio stations devoted to quranic memorization or attend any of the quranic memorization schools around. We should learn, teach our children and students, because there is no excuse for any shortcoming in this regard. 2- Pondering over it and adopting humility: Beautiful recitation must be accompanied with reflection over the verses and high humility. Allah said: "كِتَابٌ أَنْزَلْنَاهُ إِلَيْكَ مُبَارَكٌ لِيَدَّبَّرُوا آيَاتِهِ وَلِيَتَذَكَّرَ أُولُو الْأَلْبَابِ " ( ص :29) [This is] a blessed Book which We have revealed to you, [O Muhammad], that they might reflect upon its verses and that those of understanding would be reminded. (38: 29) أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ الْقُرْآنَ وَلَوْ كَانَ مِنْ عِنْدِ غَيْرِ اللَّهِ لَوَجَدُوا فِيهِ اخْتِلَافًا كَثِيرًا" (النِّساء 82) Then do they not reflect upon the Qur'an? If it had been from [any] other than Allah, they would have found within it much contradiction. (4: 82) " أَفَلَا يَتَدَبَّرُونَ الْقُرْآنَ أَمْ عَلَى قُلُوبٍ أَقْفَالُهَا" (محمّد :24) Then do they not reflect upon the Qur'an, or are there locks upon [their] hearts? (47: 21) Thus, the heart and the mind must be devoted when we recite to achieve the reverence. Why not when Allah says " لَوْ أَنْزَلْنَا هَذَا الْقُرْآنَ عَلَى جَبَلٍ لَرَأَيْتَهُ خَاشِعًا مُتَصَدِّعًا مِنْ خَشْيَةِ اللَّهِ وَتِلْكَ الْأَمْثَالُ نَضْرِبُهَا لِلنَّاسِ لَعَلَّهُمْ يَتَفَكَّرُونَ " ( الحشر :21 ) If We had sent down this Qur'an upon a mountain, you would have seen it humbled and coming apart from fear of Allah. And these examples We present to the people that perhaps they will give thought. (59: 21) " أَلَمْ يَأْنِ لِلَّذِينَ آمَنُوا أَنْ تَخْشَعَ قُلُوبُهُمْ لِذِكْرِ اللَّهِ وَمَا نَزَلَ مِنَ الْحَقِّ وَلَا يَكُونُوا كَالَّذِينَ أُوتُوا الْكِتَابَ مِنْ قَبْلُ فَطَالَ عَلَيْهِمُ الْأَمَدُ فَقَسَتْ قُلُوبُهُمْ وَكَثِيرٌ مِنْهُمْ فَاسِقُونَ " (الحديد :16 Humility grants increased reward for recitation. Abdullah bn Mas’ud (R.A) said: “I heard the messenger of Allah (pbuh) saying: “He who recites a letter from the book of Allah gets a reward of a goodness for it, and the goodness is ten manifolds. I do not mean (Alif Lam Mim) is a letter, rather Alif is a letter, Lam is a letter and Mim is a letter. The Prophet said: “The Qur’an was revealed in grief thus when you recite it shed tears and if you could not then try to shed tears.” Unfortunately today we found people only listen to the qur’an for the sake of the rhythm without reflecting or revering the message being communicated even where the qur’an mentions the torturing of the inmate of hellfire, or the dreadful chastisement for consumers of the wealth of the orphan unjustly. It is our failure to reflect and comprehend the message of the qur’an, as did our predecessors, that gave even enemies of Islam- including the Jews, the audacity to transmit quranic recitation over their stations, because they are completely sure that the quran no more awakens the senses of Muslims today. It should be stated that reflecting over the qur’an and working by it is the required catalyst needed to bind the separated parts of the Ummah and restores her virility and strength. 3- Working by the Qur’an: The Qur’an was not revealed to be recited for the dead or kept in homes or structures but as a methodology of approach for individuals and nations. Allah said: "... وَنَزَّلْنَا عَلَيْكَ الْكِتَابَ تِبْيَانًا لِكُلِّ شَيْءٍ وَهُدًى وَرَحْمَةً وَبُشْرَى لِلْمُسْلِمِينَ " ( النَّحْل : 89) And We have sent down to you the Book as clarification for all things and as guidance and mercy and good tidings for the Muslims. (16: 89) " إِنَّ هَذَا الْقُرْآنَ يَهْدِي لِلَّتِي هِيَ أَقْوَمُ وَيُبَشِّرُ الْمُؤْمِنِينَ الَّذِينَ يَعْمَلُونَ الصَّالِحَاتِ أَنَّ لَهُمْ أَجْرًا كَبِيرًا " ( الإسراء :9 ) Indeed, this Qur'an guides to that which is most suitable and gives good tidings to the believers who do righteous deeds that they will have a great reward.(17:9) { وَهَذَا كِتَابٌ أَنْزَلْنَاهُ مُبَارَكٌ فَاتَّبِعُوهُ وَاتَّقُوا لَعَلَّكُمْ تُرْحَمُونَ} ( الأنعام :155) And this [Qur'an] is a Book We have revealed [which is] blessed, so follow it and fear Allah that you may receive mercy. When Muslims rise up to work by the Qur’an and implement its injunctions then will they become the best of nations as intended by Allah where all the worlds will submit to their supremacy peacefully without the mischievous sword story fabricated by the Orientalists. Islam came to Egypt on the hand of Amr bn Al-‘Aas with some thousands of army with the goal of displacing the Romans who occupied Egypt providing opportunity for anyone interested to join Islam. Muslims then related and accommodated the Coptic Christians without compelling them to be Muslims. After a while Islam spread among Egyptian in multitudes without any sword or army …, but by practical application of the Qur’an as did the Prophet (pbuh) whereby ‘Aishah (R.A) described him thus: “his character is the qur’an.” For a bit of the character of the Prophet (pbuh) read the following: {وَعِبَادُ الرَّحْمَنِ الَّذِينَ يَمْشُونَ عَلَى الْأَرْضِ هَوْنًا وَإِذَا خَاطَبَهُمُ الْجَاهِلُونَ قَالُوا سَلَامًا (63) وَالَّذِينَ يَبِيتُونَ لِرَبِّهِمْ سُجَّدًا وَقِيَامًا (64) وَالَّذِينَ يَقُولُونَ رَبَّنَا اصْرِفْ عَنَّا عَذَابَ جَهَنَّمَ إِنَّ عَذَابَهَا كَانَ غَرَامًا (65) إِنَّهَا سَاءَتْ مُسْتَقَرًّا وَمُقَامًا (66) وَالَّذِينَ إِذَا أَنْفَقُوا لَمْ يُسْرِفُوا وَلَمْ يَقْتُرُوا وَكَانَ بَيْنَ ذَلِكَ قَوَامًا (67) وَالَّذِينَ لَا يَدْعُونَ مَعَ اللَّهِ إِلَهًا آخَرَ وَلَا يَقْتُلُونَ النَّفْسَ الَّتِي حَرَّمَ اللَّهُ إِلَّا بِالْحَقِّ وَلَا يَزْنُونَ وَمَنْ يَفْعَلْ ذَلِكَ يَلْقَ أَثَامًا (68) يُضَاعَفْ لَهُ الْعَذَابُ يَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ وَيَخْلُدْ فِيهِ مُهَانًا (69) إِلَّا مَنْ تَابَ وَآمَنَ وَعَمِلَ عَمَلًا صَالِحًا فَأُولَئِكَ يُبَدِّلُ اللَّهُ سَيِّئَاتِهِمْ حَسَنَاتٍ وَكَانَ اللَّهُ غَفُورًا رَحِيمًا (70) وَمَنْ تَابَ وَعَمِلَ صَالِحًا فَإِنَّهُ يَتُوبُ إِلَى اللَّهِ مَتَابًا (71) وَالَّذِينَ لَا يَشْهَدُونَ الزُّورَ وَإِذَا مَرُّوا بِاللَّغْوِ مَرُّوا كِرَامًا (72) وَالَّذِينَ إِذَا ذُكِّرُوا بِآيَاتِ رَبِّهِمْ لَمْ يَخِرُّوا عَلَيْهَا صُمًّا وَعُمْيَانًا (73) وَالَّذِينَ يَقُولُونَ رَبَّنَا هَبْ لَنَا مِنْ أَزْوَاجِنَا وَذُرِّيَّاتِنَا قُرَّةَ أَعْيُنٍ وَاجْعَلْنَا لِلْمُتَّقِينَ إِمَامًا (74) أُولَئِكَ يُجْزَوْنَ الْغُرْفَةَ بِمَا صَبَرُوا وَيُلَقَّوْنَ فِيهَا تَحِيَّةً وَسَلَامًا (75) خَالِدِينَ فِيهَا حَسُنَتْ مُسْتَقَرًّا وَمُقَامًا ( الفرقان :63- 76) } ( 63 ) And the servants of the Most Merciful are those who walk upon the earth easily, and when the ignorant address them [harshly], they say [words of] peace, ( 64 ) And those who spend [part of] the night to their Lord prostrating and standing [in prayer] ( 65 ) And those who say, "Our Lord, avert from us the punishment of Hell. Indeed, its punishment is ever adhering; ( 66 ) Indeed, it is evil as a settlement and residence." ( 67 ) And [they are] those who, when they spend, do so not excessively or sparingly but are ever, between that, [justly] moderate ( 68 ) And those who do not invoke with Allah another deity or kill the soul which Allah has forbidden [to be killed], except by right, and do not commit unlawful sexual intercourse. And whoever should do that will meet a penalty. ( 69 ) Multiplied for him is the punishment on the Day of Resurrection, and he will abide therein humiliated - ( 70 ) Except for those who repent, believe and do righteous work. For them Allah will replace their evil deeds with good. And ever is Allah Forgiving and Merciful. ( 71 ) And he who repents and does righteousness does indeed turn to Allah with [accepted] repentance. ( 72 ) And [they are] those who do not testify to falsehood, and when they pass near ill speech, they pass by with dignity. ( 73 ) And those who, when reminded of the verses of their Lord, do not fall upon them deaf and blind. ( 74 ) And those who say, "Our Lord, grant us from among our wives and offspring comfort to our eyes and make us an example for the righteous." ( 75 ) Those will be awarded the Chamber for what they patiently endured, and they will be received therein with greetings and [words of] peace. ( 76 ) Abiding eternally therein. Good is the settlement and residence. Further to that, the following verses could be consulted: (Q23: 1-10), (Q2: 3- 5), (Q8: 2- 4), (Q51: 16-19), (Q76: 5- 12). Hence it is our duty as Muslims individuals, groups and nations to live by the Qur’an. SECOND KHUTBAH All praises are due to Allah, Who says: " إِنَّمَا جَزَاءُ الَّذِينَ يُحَارِبُونَ اللَّهَ وَرَسُولَهُ وَيَسْعَوْنَ فِي الْأَرْضِ فَسَادًا أَنْ يُقَتَّلُوا أَوْ يُصَلَّبُوا أَوْ تُقَطَّعَ أَيْدِيهِمْ وَأَرْجُلُهُمْ مِنْ خِلَافٍ أَوْ يُنْفَوْا مِنَ الْأَرْضِ ذَلِكَ لَهُمْ خِزْيٌ فِي الدُّنْيَا وَلَهُمْ فِي الْآخِرَةِ عَذَابٌ عَظِيمٌ (33) إِلَّا الَّذِينَ تَابُوا مِنْ قَبْلِ أَنْ تَقْدِرُوا عَلَيْهِمْ فَاعْلَمُوا أَنَّ اللَّهَ غَفُورٌ رَحِيمٌ ( المائدة : 33- 34) ( 33 ) Indeed, the penalty for those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger and strive upon earth [to cause] corruption is none but that they be killed or crucified or that their hands and feet be cut off from opposite sides or that they be exiled from the land. That is for them a disgrace in this world; and for them in the Hereafter is a great punishment, ( 34 ) Except for those who return [repenting] before you apprehend them. And know that Allah is Forgiving and Merciful. ( 35 ) O you who have believed, fear Allah and seek the means [of nearness] to Him and strive in His cause that you may succeed. " (5:33-35) Peace and blessings be upon Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) raised to perfect good characters for men, his household, companions and those who follow them till the day of recompense. Thereafter, Some of the lessons derivable from above verses are as follow: The verses contained two judgements; the punishment for those who spread mischief and evil and the judgement for the repentant persons. The judgement in this world is to be killed, crucified and that their hands and feet be cut off from opposite sides and that they be exiled from the land by imprisonment or expulsion from his town to another town of at least a distance of about 89 km to his residential town. There is no dispute that the banditry kill carelessly even in situation where the slain is not equivalent to the killer. The punishment in the hereafter is severe torture in Jahannam- hellfire due to the magnitude of their crime. The two punishments had an addition of disgrace. It is deducible from the combination of the two penalties for the evil perpetrators that the Haddu- prescribed punishment for crime- does not cancel punishment in the hereafter. The Haddu- prescribed punishment for crime- only act as checks not as cleansers as clearly shown in the verses. This form the position of Hanafi school. The majority of scholars agree that Haddu- prescribed punishment for crime- acts as expiation as well- i.e, cleanses the sin, relying on the hadith: “He who commit any of these crimes, and is punished for it, that will be expiation for him. And he who commit any of these crimes, and Allah covers him, then his affair rest with Allah, if He wills, He pardons him; and if He wills, He punishes him.” (Muslim) The rule of a repentant criminal before he is apprehended is the same regarding all other criminals. He who kills will be killed in revenge. He who injures another will be injured in retribution or pay the legally prescribed financial compensation. He who steals will have his hand cut off. He who steals any property and returns it, the heir (family member) of the owner or the slain owns the right of pardon. Brothers in faith, the activities of the Boko Haram sect in Nigeria today is similar to the act of waging war against Allah described in the verses above. Islam is dissociated and innocent of them and all their evil perpetrations including the gruesome killing of the students of the federal government college, Yobe, the destruction of towns and villages, the sporadic shooting openly in markets, mosques and churches. In the view of Islam, Boko Haram are a destructive sect spreading corruption on earth. In addition, is the injustice of our rulers in Nigeria over the suffering unleashed on Nigeria over the problem of fuel scarcity, whereas Nigeria is an oil-producing state with exporting capability, adding to the ugly scenerio is the timely co-incidence of the experience with the centenary celebration of our country. What then is there to celebrate after a century of existence? Is it the gradeur failure of the power sector, or the sadnening security imbroglio, or the Boko Haram threat, or the collapse in the education system? So flee to Allah. Indeed, I am to you from Him a clear warner. (51: 50) Oh Allah descend peace; flowing with continuous tranquility and security upon Nigeria and all other Muslim nations. O Allah accept the worship of the pilgrims of hajj and Umrah, and grant us all Your pleasure, And the last of our call will be, "Praise to Allah, Lord of the worlds!"

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