One of the most important foundations of our shariah is justice. Allah SWT sent Prophets and books to humanity to show them the way to happiness in this life, and success in the hereafter.
The scholars of Islam, explain that the aim of Sharia is to promote human welfare. This is evident in the Qur’an, and teachings of the Prophet SAWS.
They explain that the welfare of humans is based on the fulfilment of necessities, needs, and comforts.
Necessities are matters that worldly and religious life depend upon. Their omission leads to unbearable hardship in this life, or punishment in the next. There are five necessities: preservation of religion, life, intellect, lineage, and wealth. These ensure individual and social welfare in this life and the hereafter.
One of these necessities is the subject of our reminder today. Unjust killing and murder is forbidden as it is in direct conflict with the first of the five necessities in life. However, we live in a time and a place where so much death and killing is heard of that we are almost desensitized to the occurrence of it.
However, we need to understand the consequences of such an act. The imam referenced the 93rd ayat of Sura Nisa which is translated to say:
But whoever kills a believer intentionally – his recompense is Hell, wherein he will abide eternally, and Allah has become angry with him and has cursed him and has prepared for him a great punishment.
Dear brothers and sisters, we hear so much of the love and the mercy of Allah SWT. We imagine Allah SWT to be a kind benevolent God and so when we hear of a verse of the Quran in which Allah SWT speaks of His anger then we ought to shudder in fear and contemplate the action that causes such a consequence for His creation.
This point is reiterated again in the 68th and 69th ayats of Sura Al-Furqan which is translated to say:
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 illicit relations. And whoever should do that will meet a penalty. Multiplied for him is the punishment on the Day of Resurrection, and he will abide therein humiliated
Dear brothers and sisters, our youth is in need of this reminder. We cannot escape the fact that knife crime is a real problem in this country. Although the peak of this is in London, we have problems with gangs in all towns and cities. Our youth needs to be educated on both the dangers of this in this world and the next.
The imam also spoke of ayat 32 of Sura Al-Maidah which translates to say:
Because of that, We decreed upon the Children of Israel that whoever kills a soul unless for a soul or for corruption [done] in the land – it is as if he had slain mankind entirely. And whoever saves one – it is as if he had saved mankind entirely. And our messengers had certainly come to them with clear proofs. Then indeed many of them, [even] after that, throughout the land, were transgressors.
Dear brothers and sisters, to kill one is to have killed all of mankind. Allah SWT sets out to illustrate the gravity of this sin. However, the very same ayat He flips it over to explain His divine mercy by explaining that whoever saves the life of one soul is as if he has saved the life of the whole of mankind. This is the level of mercy Allah SWT demonstrates to His creation.
Our beloved Prophet SAWS taught us on this topic also. The first hadith speaks of the signs of the last days approaching. It translates to say:
“The Hour (Last Day) will not be established until (religious) knowledge will be taken away (by the death of religious learned men), earthquakes will be very frequent, time will pass quickly, afflictions will appear, murders will increase and money will overflow amongst you.”
Alongside that the Prophet SAWS wanted of killing in this hadith which translated to say:
The Prophet (ﷺ) said, “Avoid the seven destructive things.” It was asked: (by those present): “What are they, O Messenger of Allah?” He replied, “Associating anyone or anything with Allah in worship; practising sorcery, killing of someone without a just cause whom Allah has forbidden, devouring the property of an orphan, eating of usury, fleeing from the battlefield and slandering chaste women who never even think of anything touching chastity and are good believers.”
Dear brothers and sisters, we live in a time and a place where we hear of atrocities occurring almost all the time. There is a complete disregard for this from so many that one can only be fearful of how close we are to The Hour.
However, we should take a lesson from this in that we make efforts to do our part. Saving a life is to save the life of all of mankind and so we can actively participate in this good deed. Whether it is objecting to atrocities happening overseas through positive activism or through the education of our youth to ensure they aren’t trapped into gangs and violent crime that results from them, the responsibility lies with us all as a community. Let’s use today’s reminder to be mindful of this and keep ourselves on the right side of this reminder.Read More
This week’s khutbah was focused on the ayats of Sura Al-Furqan, ayats 68-70 and the lessons within.
This section of the Quran is translated to say:
Those who never invoke any other deity beside God, nor take a life, which God has made sacred, except in the pursuit of justice, nor commit adultery.
Whoever does these things will face the penalties: their torment will be doubled on the Day of Resurrection, and they will remain in torment, disgraced, except those who repent, believe, and do good deeds
God will change the evil deeds of such people into good ones. He is most forgiving, most merciful.
Dear brothers and sisters, the lessons within the Quran are more than any of us can completely fathom and certainly the lessons from these ayats are more than the time permitted in this reminder but the imam attempts to summarize by speaking of the major points mentioned.
The first reminder is one about killing. Although this is primarily a reminder for those who are looking from the outside in on Islam, it is also a reminder for us all in the face of the misconceptions and the misinformation being spread from people claiming to follow the teachings of our faith.
As Muslims, the taking of any innocent life goes against the teaching of our faith. This is mentioned in the following hadith of our Prophet SAWS which is translated to say:
Whoever kills a non-combatant, innocent non-Muslims will not smell the scent of paradise
However, as we know from what we are seeing on the news, those who claim to be of our faith are killing other Muslims and this is specifically referenced in the Quran as reminded by the imam today.
In Sura An-Nisa, ayat 93 it is translated to say:
“And whoever kills a believer intentionally, his punishment is Hell; he shall abide in it, and Allah will send His wrath on him and curse him and prepare for him a painful chastisement.”
Dear brothers and sisters, this is serving as a reminder for us that what we are being led to believe via the media is simply not a true representation of our faith and it is our responsibility as Muslims living in this time and place to educate those around us to the truth of Islam.
Alongside, that the ayats remind us of Zina. This is both cheating on your spouse and having illicit relations outside of the sanctimony of marriage. Unfortunately, we are living in a time and a place where this is now considered a norm in our society.
We must remind ourselves that not only is this against the decree of Allah SWT but with all things that have been forbidden to us, there is a worldly reason for them to be forbidden. An example of this is the new health problems that exist today because of this activity.
Expanding upon the definition of Zina, the imam reminded us of Sura Al-Noor, ayats 30 and 31 which are translated to say:
Tell the believing men to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal acts). That is purer for them. Verily, Allaah is AllAware of what they do. And tell the believing women to lower their gaze (from looking at forbidden things), and protect their private parts (from illegal acts)”
Dear brothers and sisters, the first step in solving the ills of our society is to be able to be candid and open in communication about them. Especially with our youth, we cannot rely on their teachers or their friends to educate them on topics which are so prevalent in their lives. By befriending our children, we can be in a position where they approach us first with issues such as these and thus enable us to educate them on the ills of modern society.
And lastly, the ayats in today’s reminder demonstrate a taste of Allah’s mercy. This reminder told us of two sins mentioned by Allah SWT and they are no small matter. To kill another and to spread disharmony in society through Zina are acts that weigh heavy on the scales against the soul.
However, as with the theme of the whole Quran, Allah SWT ends this passage by illustrating that the book of Allah isn’t about fear-mongering as people who have misconceptions might believe. In fact, it’s quite the opposite because Allah SWT mentions that such acts can still be overturned
And what does this act be that causes such a great overturn towards reward for these grave sins?
Allah SWT sets out three criteria for this to happen. 1. We must believe in Allah SWT. 2. We must follow these sins with sorrow in our hearts for having committed them. 3. We must strive to readdress the balance in society by doing good deeds to make up for the bad ones.
And that is the conclusion to the lesson for today’s reminder. We are advised about the gravity of the sins that we may fall foul to. The specifics we touched on then was killing and illicit relations. But despite the warning from Allah SWT about those who do these sins, He still ends it with a get-out clause as if to remind us to not be in despair if you are of these people who fall into this category.
Dear brothers and sisters, one of the tactics of Shaitaan is to convince us that we are beyond redemption, that we cannot be saved and that whatever we are doing or may have done is surely too much for Allah SWT to forgive. This tactic is powerful because the individual becomes full of despair and thinks what is the point in being religious as they have done so much ill already.
This reminder to us all today demonstrates the scale of Allah’s mercy and that it can eclipse anything one may have done. All that is necessary is to return to Allah SWT with humility, remorse and with a view to righting the wrongs one has committed by becoming an equally positive member of society.
May Allah SWT enable us to remain clear of these ills in society. May Allah SWT protect us from feeling despair at our shortcomings and may Allah SWT reward us for our attempts to reimburse society for our sins.