Praise is due to Allah, Whom we praise and from Whom we ask help and forgiveness. We seek refuge in Allah from the evils of ourselves. He whom Allah guides has no one who can lead him astray, and he whom He leads astray has no one to guide him. I testify that there is nothing deserving of worship except Allah, and I testify that Muhammad is His slave and Messenger. (O you who have believed, fear Allah as He should be feared and do not die except as Muslims [in submission to Him].). (O mankind, fear your Lord, who created you from one soul and created from it its mate and dispersed from both of them many men and women. And fear Allah, through whomyou ask one another,and the wombs.Indeed Allah is ever,over you, an Observer.). (O you who have believed, fear Allah and speak words of appropriate justice. He will [then] amend for you your deeds and forgive you your sins. And whoever obeys Allah and His Messenger has certainly attained a great attainment.).
To proceed: The best discourse is God’s Book, the best guidance is that given by Muhammad, and the worst things are those which are novelties. Every innovation is error.
Brothers in belief, the biggest blessing is guidance to the straight path of Allah. A person is in need of Allah’s guidance to him. It’s the guidance that the prophet (PBUH) asked his Lord for and directed his companions to seek it. It’s the guidance that the performer of prayer asks his Lord in every rakaat! (Guide us to the straight path) [Al-Faatihah: 6]. Today we’ll talk about the steadfastness on the right path!
Yes! This is the messenger of Allah (PBUH) as his servant Anas Bin Malik (May Allah be pleased with him) reported about him along with Al-Nuwas Bin Sam’aan, Aaishah and Umm Salmah (May Allah be pleased with them). All of them reported that the prophet (PBUH) would frequently ask Allah for steadfastness! Anas reported that God’s messenger often said, “O Thou who turnest the hearts about, establish my heart in Thy religion.” Anas said, “Prophet of God, do you fear for us who believe in you and in your message?” He replied, “Yes. The hearts are between two of God’s fingers and He turns them about as He wills.” This hadith has been transmitted by Ahmad and Tirmidhi. Al-Albaani has declared it to be of Hasan grade.
The prophet (PBUH) sought refuge in Allah from loss after plenty.
Brothers in belief: that’s why the fear of deviation and stray after guidance was a source of anxiety in the hearts of the pious, rather those firm in belief! (But those firm in knowledge say, "We believe in it. All [of it] is from our Lord." And no one will be reminded except those of understanding. [Who say], "Our Lord, let not our hearts deviate after You have guided us and grant us from Yourself mercy. Indeed, You are the Bestower.) [Aal-Imran: 7-8].
The turmoils of doubts and lust had not spread -Allah knows better- in any period as they’ve spread in our times through print and audio-visual means from disbelievers, hypocrites, atheists, ignorant and whimsical persons!
Dear audience: turmoils are of two kinds: turmoils of lust and turmoils of doubts. The most numerous are the turmoils of lust and the most dangerous are the turmoils of doubts because they sometimes reach to atheism and disbelief. There are some turmoils of doubts which create doubts concerning the established facts of the Quran and the Hadith or undermine them. The weak interpretation of the texts which are done to match whims are also among them. Among the turmoils of the doubts are those which have crept in the nation, e.g., to declare someone a disbeliever unduly, to spread destruction, to be involved in bombing and to desecrate the protected blood.
The servants of the Most Merciful: the turmoils are different. Hudhaifa b. al-Yaman reported that I was present in the assembly in which the prophet (PBUH) had been describing the turmoil, and he especially made a mention of three turmoils which would not spare anything and amongst these there would be turmoils like storms in the hot season. Some of them would be violent and some of them would be comparatively mild.” This hadith has been transmitted by Muslim.
Brothers in Islam: the wisdom behind the turmoils is test and trial. (Alif, Lām, Meem. 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.) [Al-‘Ankabut: 1-3]. Allah, the Glorious further said: (O you who have believed, Allah will surely test you through something of the game that your hands and spears [can] reach, that Allah may make evident those who fear Him unseen. And whoever transgresses after that - for him is a painful punishment.) [Al-Maaidah: 94]. The conflict between truth and falsehood is old and continuous!
Dear audience: Do you know the wording of the oath that the prophet (PBUH) used to swear frequently? Ibn ‘Umar said the greatest oath the Prophet used was, “No, by Him who overturns the hearts.” This hadith has been transmitted by Bukahri. Nasai transmitted from Ibn Umar who said: "The oath by which the Messenger of Allah used to swear was: 'No, by the Controller of the hearts.'" How and this statement of Allah, the Glorious has been revealed on him. (And indeed, they were about to tempt you away from that which We revealed to you in order to [make] you invent about Us something else; and then they would have taken you as a friend. And if We had not strengthened you, you would have almost inclined to them a little. Then [if you had], We would have made you taste double [punishment in] life and double [after] death. Then you would not find for yourself against Us a helper.) [Al-Israa: 73-75].
O Allah, O Overturner of hearts, make my heart firm in Your deen. O God, I ask Thee for guidance, piety, self-control and a competence. ([Who say], "Our Lord, let not our hearts deviate after You have guided us and grant us from Yourself mercy. Indeed, You are the Bestower.) Seek the forgiveness of Allah. He’s the All-Forgiving, the Most Merciful.
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All praises are for Allah, the Protector, the Sufficer, the Responder, the Healer, the Aware, the Guide who said: (Allah keeps firm those who believe, with the firm word,in worldly life and in the Hereafter.) [Ibrahim: 27]. He further said: (And when they deviated, Allah caused their hearts to deviate.) [Al-Saff: 5]. May the blessings and peace of Allah be upon our pious prophet, the possessor of high honour and evident guidance, and on his family and companions. To proceed:
The servants of the Most Merciful: steadfastness on guidance is a blessing from Allah, the Glorious. It has some means which a person must adopt in order to get steadfastness on the guidance:
Among the means of the steadfastness provided by Allah is that a person should feel his poverty, weakness and needfulness to Allah and ask his Lord for steadfastness. What we mentioned just above is sufficient.
Among the means of steadfastness on straight path is to act on all the rules and laws of the religion! (But if they had done what they were instructed, it would have been better for them and a firmer position [for them in faith]. And then We would have given them from Us a great reward. And We would have guided them to a straight path.) [Al-Nisaa: 66-68].
(If they had done what they were instructed) implies that the important thing after listening to sermons is to act on them. It should not be merely for hearing! (O you who have believed, enter into Islām completely [and perfectly]) [Al-Baqarah: 208].
Among the means of steadfastness in the times of turmoil is to seek guidance from the holy Quran. Allah, the Exalted said: (Say, [O Muḥammad], "The Pure Spirit [i.e., Gabriel] has brought it down from your Lord in truth to make firm those who believe and as guidance and good tidings to the Muslims.") [Al-Nahl: 102].
Among the means of steadfastness during the storms of turmoils and lusts is to have the company of the pious persons and advise one another to truth and patience. (And keep yourself patient [by being] with those who call upon their Lord in the morning and the evening, seeking His face [i.e., acceptance]. And let not your eyes pass beyond them, desiring adornments of the worldly life, and do not obey one whose heart We have made heedless of Our remembrance and who follows his desire and whose affair is ever [in] neglect.) [Al-Kahf: 28].
Among the means of steadfastness on the right path is to wet the dryness of the soul by regularly reading the biography of the prophet (PBUH), the stories of the prophets, the biographies of the companions and the truthful personalities after them. (And each [story] We relate to you from the news of the messengers is that by which We make firm your heart.) [Hud: 120].
Among the means of steadfastness and salvation from turmoils is to stick to the sunnah of the prophet (PBUH). According to an authentic hadith: “For those of you who live after me will see great disagreement. You must then follow my sunnah and that of the rightly-guided caliphs. Hold to it and stick fast to it.” (This hadith has been transmitted by Ahmad, Abu Dawood, Tirmidhi. Ibn Hibban has declared it to be of Sahih grade.)
Among the means of steadfastness while the winds of lusts or doubts are blowing is to be away from the places of turmoils. According to an authentic hadith: “Let him who hears of the Dajjal (Antichrist) go far from him.” (Ahmad and Abu Dawood). The scholars said: the hadith implies that it’s prohibited to be present in the abodes and places of turmoils. It also makes it clear that one of the greatest means of salvation from turmoils is to be away from them and their places.
To conclude: one of the biggest means of steadfastness is the uprightness of the heart and sincerity to Allah, the Glorious. According to an authentic hadith: (A person performs deeds like the deeds of the people of Paradise apparently before people and he would be amongst the dwellers of Hell and a person acts apparently like the people of Hell, but (in fact) he would be among the dwellers of Paradise.); this hadith has been transmitted by Bukhari and Muslim. The words “as it appears to the people” indicate that the inner persona of a person is unlike his outer persona; so, the evil intention catches a person and deviates him from the guidance towards the misguidance.
Then, send out the blessings and peace…
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