The Test of The Grave

Following on from last week’s reminder, we are reminded this week of the test of the grave. Both in the Quran and in the teachings of the Prophet SAWS, we are reminded of the test of the grave.

And make no mistake, this is a test that is both coming for each and every one of us and it is something that we cannot take lightly.

Allah SWT warns us repeatedly of those who will suffer in their grave. The imam, for example, mentioned ayat 93 of Sura Al-An’am which is translated to say:

Who does more wrong than the one who fabricates lies against Allah or claims, “I have received revelations!”—although nothing was revealed to them—or the one who says, “I can reveal the like of Allah’s revelations!”? If you ˹O Prophet˺ could only see the wrongdoers in the throes of death while the angels are stretching out their hands ˹saying˺, “Give up your souls! Today you will be rewarded with the torment of disgrace for telling lies about Allah and for being arrogant towards His revelations!”

And Sura Al-Anfal, ayat 50 which is translated to say:

If only you could see when the angels take the souls of the disbelievers, beating their faces and backs, ˹saying,˺ “Taste the torment of burning!

Dear brothers, for those of us who have heard this reminder before, we are taught from the Prophet SAWS that we will be asked about our God, who we followed and to which faith did we belong by the angels when we are lying down in our graves. Just this point alone is harrowing to think about. Imagine how that will feel and only Allah SWT knows exactly how that will be for each of us.

And for those amongst us who are thinking that we know the answers to these questions, the reminder today is that this isn’t questioning like you have in an exam or test, it isn’t enough to just utter then answers to these questions.

Dear brothers, we need to live the answers to these questions. Ask yourself, is your conduct, your manners, your everyday behaviour an answer to these questions. Are you living by the teachings of the book of Allah SWT? Are you adhering to the sunnah of the Prophet SAWS?

We can all say that Allah is our God, the Prophet SAWS is our teacher and Islam is our deen but does our life reflect these answers? This is the reminder today and it is a reminder that each and every one of us should reflect upon consistently as none of us know when our time will come.

The Prophet SAWS is reported to have said:

“When you die, your place will be shown to you in the morning and the evening. If you are one of the people of the Garden, then you will be with the people of the Garden, and if you are one of the people of the Fire, then you will be with the people of the Fire. You will be told, ‘This is your place of waiting until Allah raises you on the day of rising.’ ” 

And so we need to take steps today to ensure that we are of those people who are shown the beauty of the afterlife in our graves. And we can all achieve this by simply living the life Allah SWT has instructed us to live, optimistic in the knowledge that one day we will return to Him who will be happy with how we lived our lives in this dunya.

May Allah SWT make us of the people of the Garden, may Allah SWT make our test in the grave an easy one and may Allah SWT enable us to live practically the answers to the questions of the grave.

Read More

Trials and Tribulations in Islam

Allah SWT says in the opening ayats of Sura Ankabut:

Do the people think that they will be left to say “we believe” and they will not be tried? But we have certainly tried those before them, and Allah will surely make evident those who are truthful, and he will surely make evident the liars.

Dear brothers, in this life we have issues that affect us all. We have problems that we have to deal with, either as an individual in our personal lives or as a community or Ummah, problems that affect every Muslim alive today.

When faced with such scenarios, it’s very easy to get caught up in the moment. These problems cause us difficulty and they seem to be overpowering at the time and begin to play on us.

Some can fall into the trap of thinking that there is no light at the end of the tunnel or that their problems are too severe or that their issues cannot be resolved.

This can then lead to a range of issues If not addressed through an Islamic framework of thinking, they can lead to depression, anxiety, fear, and a weakness in imaan.

So, what is this framework of thinking that we need to establish in order to avoid falling into this trap.

The first is the pondering and understanding of the opening ayat to this khutba. This opening ayat is explaining to us that we will be tested as life is about a great test. This is a hard thing to remember when people around us are not thinking this way.

More and more in this life and this society, we are faced with the underlying tone of those who are only living for this life.

Materialism is one of the biggest illnesses of our time. And when asked this question of what it means to be materialistic, the common answer is to talk of cars, houses and money.

But materialism is a wider problem then goods that we can purchase. The materialism that needs to be addressed is one of our faith.

Dear brothers, as Muslims we need to be aware that this materialism can span also to our perception of Islam.

This life is a test and to focus on making this life better for ourselves, our community and our Ummah is a great thought to have but it should not be the priority in our thinking.

Instead, as Muslims we must understand that Allah SWT tells us in the Quran that our living is not for this world. The materialism that is shown by those around us who don’t believe in His word is not a mode of thinking we should adopt.

Our living is for the next life. Our mode of operation should be for the next life. With hardship comes ease and that ease, for those of us who operate correctly in this life, will be everlasting in the next life. Only Allah SWT can change what is happening in this world and we need to accept that and focus on the next.

That first ayat explains to us that we should expect to face challenges in our personal lives and as a community. The ayat is explicit in stating that the declaration of belief is not enough for us as Allah SWT poses a question to us and then addresses it by reminding us of the tests that previous nations went through.

And Allah has said in Sura Al-Imran:

O you who have believed, fear Allah as He should be feared and do not die except as Muslims.

Dear brothers, this ayat is poignant if we ponder as Allah SWT is talking about the end of our test. When the exam is about to come to an end and all the hard work has been done, He reminds us to die as those who submitted their will to Him. Those who believed, accepted and coped in His will, His decree, His plan and His test for us.

None of know when that test is coming to an end. It will come at different times for us all. But we need to be mindful of the fact that it will come one day and we need to be ready for it in our minds and in our hearts.

So how do we practically apply this to our test? What is it that is needed practically to achieve the peace in our hearts and belief in our Lord?

This khutba ends with 2 things we can all begin to do today to achieve this:

  1. Increase in your supplication and remembrance of your Creator. This can range from starting every day tasks with Bismillah to duas from the heart when in sujood or after salat.
  2. Understand that the primary dunya or material connection we have to Allah SWT is the Quran. Take a few minutes a day to ponder of an Ayat of the Quran. Ayat means sign and there is a sign in each and every ayat revealed so begin the journey. And our website has resources to help you begin whatever level you are at so start today.

May Allah SWT give us ease in our trials. May Allah SWT enable us to cope with our trials and may Allah SWT reward us for coping with our trials

Ameen wal hamdullilahi rabilalameen.

Read More