The life of Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) is full of countless examples that show his status as a role model for Muslim societies and individuals.
His life is one that was dominated by a superior morality, good habits, noble and gentle feelings and superior skills, all of which are characteristics that help prevent people from getting entangled in a web of sin.
The rich and the prosperous, the poor and the needy, the ruler and the ruled, the weak and the lonely, the teacher and the student, the merchant and the craftsman, the employer and the employee – in other words, every sort of person can find truths in Prophet Muhammad’s life that constitute an example for them to follow.
Allah SWT mentions our Prophe SAWS in Sura Al-ahzab, ayat 21:
“Verily in the messenger of Allah you have a good example for him who looks unto Allah and the Last Day, and remembers Allah much.”
A person who follows another person’s lead imitates that person; they follow their attitude and style. That is to say, they identify themselves with that person. In terms of Islamic faith, uswa, that is to say being an example or a role model, is an attribute that is found in those who possess goodness, beauty and righteousness.
The sunnah, are all the words, actions, teachings, characteristics, examples of the morality and personality of Prophet Muhammad SAWS.
This verse shows the importance of Prophet Muhammad’s sunnah in the lives of Muslims. As a matter of fact, the Quran clearly states that Prophet Muhammad SAWS has a superior character and demonstrates an exemplary life style.
When explaining the Islam to the disbelievers, often it has been said that the Quran is the theory and his Sunnah was the practical example of our faith. This further cements his status for each and every one of us.
In essence, his actions and his words, forms the face of Islam and gives it the characteristic features that we see all around the Islamic world.
Such is the status of our Prophet Muhammed SAWS that he is someone by whom Allah SWT Himself swears an oath:
By your life, they wandered blindly in their drunkenness.
Dear brothers and sisters, we previously did a khutba on oaths and the importance that Allah SWT placed in his Slaves not swearing an Oath on anything other than Allah SWT.
But through this verse of the Quran, Allah SWT is demonstrating to us the status that He places on Prophet Muhammed SAWS because he uses our messenger SAWSas the basis of the oath.
So what does this mean for us today? First of all, to know the status of our Leader and the best of all Mankind SAWS, is to justify the hurt we feel when his name, his memory is tarnished in the West.
In the current climate, it is not an easy topic to discuss with the non-believers, but if we begin to understand his status then we can begin to explain the worth he has in our hearts.
Secondly his status is something that should compel us to be more proactive in our lives as Muslims. If the Quran is the theory and the Prophet SAWS is the practice, then are we attempting to live by that template and those standards?
What effort have we made to imitate our Prophet SAWS teachings, sayings and actions?
The truth of the matter is that in this world, there are plenty of Role Models shown on the media, but only one matters.
We ought to be taking steps to follow our Prophet SAWS as a role model not just for ourselves but also for our youth to see and for our neighbours and co-workers to witness as a refutation to the image of Islam that is portrayed in the West.
And what are those steps? The khutba concludes with 3 steps we can all take to make this a practical part of our self-development:
- Learn about the life aka Seerah of the Prophet SAWS. There are some great writings on this crucial topic and we should all aim to read a book on it at some point.
- Download an app on Sunnah or Hadiths. There are dozens of these apps now on the Smart phone. Download one that has a daily reminder and you can benefit from increasing your knowledge through modern technology.
- Encourage one another to send salutations on the Prophet SAWS often. Remember that in our previous hadiths we have mentioned that our beloved Prophet SAWS, despite his status, has reserved his supplication to Allah SWT until the Day of Judgement upon which day he will request that his ummah, which includes us all today, are forgiven for all their sins.
Dear brothers and sisters, we are blessed to be a part of the best of creation’s community SAWS. Let’s not waste such a blessing and instead use it to propel ourselves to being of those who are referred to as his Ummah on the Day of Judgement.
May Allah SWT allow us to appreciate the status of Prophet Muhammed SAWS. May Allah SWT give us the drive to emulate him and may Allah SWT reward us for our efforts in doing this.
Ameen Walhamdullilahi Rabilalameen.