According to Christians, we are in a festive season now with today being called Good Friday and this weekend being the celebration of Easter Sunday.
There are many muslims around the world that are taking part in these festivities. They will do this without really questioning what they are doing, without even asking themselves if, as muslims, they should be participating in this.
My brothers, it is important to equip ourselves with the knowledge of these days so that we can remain vigiliant and educate our children on the reality of these holidays and why, as muslims we do not celebrate these holidays.
Firstly, the modern inclusions of the Easter Bunny and the Easter Egg is something that doesn’t even belong to orthodox Christianity so it is not worth mentioning today. It is a much of an innovation on their faith as it is on ours.
Good Friday is remembered by Christians because they mark it in the calendar as the day in which Jesus or Eesa, peace be upon him, died as he was crucified on the cross.
The following Easter Sunday is then remembered by the Christians as the day in which he was resurrected and given rebirth.
My brothers, let’s compare this to our belief as muslims.
Firstly, we regard Jesus or Prophet Eesa, peace be upon him, in the highest regard. He is one of the most beloved Prophets to us and no muslim can call himself a muslim unless he believes in Jesus or Eesa, peace be upon him.
In Sura Maryam, his miraculous birth is described along with his miraculous declaration whilst still being in the cradle. Allah SWT says:
“Jesus said, “Indeed I am a servant of Allah. He has given me the scripture and made me a prophet.
And he has made me blessed wherever I am and has instructed upon me prayer and zakat as long as I remain alive.
And made me dutiful to my mother, and He has not made me a wretched tyrant.
And peace is on me the day I was born and the day I will die and the day I am raised alive.
After this, Allah SWT then continues to clarify to us the difference between what we believe and the Christian belief:
That is Jesus, the son of Mary – the word of truth about which they are in dispute.
It is not befitting for Allah to take a son. Glorified is He because when He decrees an affair, He only says to it “Be”, and it is.
These ayats in Sura Maryam clearly illustrate that we, as muslims, do not regard Prophet Eesa, peace be upon him, as the son of God.
Returning to the topic of Easter and Good Friday, Sura Nisa ayat 157 clearly informs us as to the events that took place:
And as for their saying: “Indeed we have killed the messiah, Jesus the son of Mary, the messenger of Allah.” And they did not kill him, nor did they crucify him; but another was made to resemble him to them. And indeed, those who differ over it are in doubt about it. They have no knowledge of it except the following of assumption. And they did not kill him, for certain.
The following ayat then states:
Rather, Allah raised him to Himself. And ever is Allah Exalted in Might and Wise.
So here we see that as muslims, we cannot commemorate such events as Good Friday nor Easter as we fundamentally disagree with Christians on them. For us, Prophet Eesa was neither killed through crucifixion nor was he given rebirth.
My brothers, these forthcoming events need to be observed with the knowledge of their faith and ours. As muslims, we must strike a balance between respecting the faith of others but being steadfast to our own.
Of course, sura Al-Kafiroon states that we vocalise respectfully that our religion is ours and there is theirs but equally so we need to be wary that we do not fall into the trap of imitating them as is stated in Sura Al-Qalam, ayat 8-9:
Then do not obey the deniers.
They wish that you would soften in your position, so they would soften towards you.
May Allah SWT keep us steadfast in our straight path. May Allah SWT protect us all from imitating those not of the true path. And May Allah SWT give us knowledge of our faith so that we can differentiate truth from falsehood.
Ameen wal hamdullilahi rabilalameen.