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SHAHADAH (TESTIMONY OR WITNESS OR CREED)


The Shahadah is an Arabic word which means ‘to give witness’ or ‘to testify’ in the oneness of Allah and His last Messenger who was sent for the entire mankind. It is the basic creed of Islam that must be recited under oath with the specific statement. This testament is a foundation for all other beliefs and practices in Islam. The testimony or the creed (Shahadah or Shahadatan) consists of two parts i.e., Kalima-E-Tawheed (Allah’s Oneness) and Kalima-E-Risalat (Prophet Muhammad’s Messengerhood).

 

Table of Contents

 

Wordings of Shahadah

Kalima-E-Shahadah is the first pillar of Islam as mentioned in Sahih Al Bukhari Vol 1:8. There are actually two parts to the shahadah which when taken together is often called the Shahadatayn, meaning “two testimonies.” The Arabic transliteration of Shahadah are"Ashadu'an la ilaha illallah, wa ashadu anna Muhammadur rasulullah", its translation in English is "I bear witness that there is no Ilah(God) worthy of worship but Allah, and I bear witness that Muhammad is Allah’s Messenger." Non-Muslims wishing to revert to Islam are required to recite the creed.

 

The Importance of The Shahada In Islam

Definitely there could be no greater and more important a statement than 'Laa ilaaha illa Allah' (there is no deity worthy of worship but Allah).


It is the statement of declaration of belief in the Tawheed of Allah which is the dividing line between Imaan and kufr - It was the call of all of the previous Messengers and Prophets.
Allah (Glorified He be) Himself attested to the importance of this statement in the Quraan:
He (Glorified He be) said in the Quran: "...and know that Laa ilaaha ill Allah (that there is no deity worthy of worship but Allah)..." [Quran 47:19, 20:8, 3:18, 59:22-3]

As long as this statement is an obligation for an unbeliever to declare in order for him to become a Muslim, and also, since a person who pronounces it faithfully his property and life are safeguarded in this world, it becomes an obligation upon any Muslim who wants to understand the Deen of Islam to realize its meaning, merits, principles, conditions and its place in life.

Remembering Allah (Dhikr of Allah) is one of the most important commandments of Allah. This He Himself commanded in many verses of the Quraan, especially after the performance of important religious obligations: "...Then when you leave Arafat, remember Allah (by glorfying and praising Him) at the Mash`ar il-Haraam. And remember Allah (by invokingAllah for all good) as He has guided you..." [Quran 2:198]

"Then when you have accomplished your 'Manasik' (all the rights of Hajj); remember Allah as you remember your father with a strong remembrance..." [Quran 2:200]


He (Glorified He be) also said: "...and establish prayers for My remembrance." [Quran 20:14]

The best way to remember Allah is described to us in the Hadeeth of the Messenger (Peace be upon him), he said: "...and the best (supplication) I and the other prophets who were sent who were sent before me proclaimed was: There is no deity worthy of worship but Allah, He is Alone and has no partner. To Him belongs the Ownership (of everything), and to Him belongs all Praise, and He has total power over all things." [Laa ilaaha ill Allah, wah.dahu laa shareeka lahu, lahul mulku wa lahul hamdu wa huwa `alaa kulli shay'in Qadeer. [At-Tirmidhi]


The Messenger of Allah (Peace be upon him) also said: "The best remembrance of Allah is to say 'laa ilaaha ill Allah' (there is no deity worthy of worship except Allah)."

All of the above points highlight the importance of this 'kalima' which we will try to explain in some more detail so that a clearer understanding of it can be achieved. [a]

 

It is the same message (laa ilaha illallah) conveyed by Adam, Ibrahim (Abraham), Musa (Moses), ‘Eesa (Jesus) etc and finally to mankind until the Day of Resurrection by Muhammad (Peace and blessings of Allah be upon them all), Qur’an.Surah Anbiya 21:25. This testimony is the key to Paradise. But there is no key except that it has ridges. If you come with the key that has the right ridges, the door will be open for you. Otherwise, it will not open for you. In order to achieve Paradise through this testimony, one must fulfill certain conditions that constitute the “right ridges” for this key statement.

 

THE FIRST PART OF SHAHADAH

Pillars of LAA ILAHA ILLALLAH

It is the declaration that represents the belief in the oneness of Allah (Tawheed). It is composed of negation and confirmation phrases. The first part of testimony (laa ilaha illallah) comprises of two pillars: Pillar of Denial and Pillar of Affirmation.

Denial: Laa Ilaha – ‘There is no (true) god’, denies believe and worship for anything (except Allah).

Affirmation: Illallah ‘Except Allah’, affirms believe and worship for Allah alone.[1]

 

The Eight conditions of the Kalima-E-Tawheed

Seven critical conditions of the Kalima-E-Tawheed (Laa ilaha illallah) which is compulsory to know as a Muslim, without which it is considered to be meaningless, are as follows:

 

·         Al-`Ilm(العلم): Knowledge of the meaning of the Shahadah, its negation and affirmation and its opposite is ignorance.

 

·         Al-Yaqeen(اليقين): Certainty – perfect knowledge of it that counteracts suspicion and doubt.

 

·         Al-Ikhlaas(الإخلاص): Sincerity which negates shirk (Associating partners with Allah).

 

·         Al-Sidq(الصدق): Truthfulness that permits neither falsehood nor hypocrisy.

 

·         Al-Mahabbah(المحبة): Love of the Shahadah and its meaning, and being happy with it.

 

·         Al-Inqiad(الانقياد): Submission to its rightful requirements, which are the duties that must be performed with sincerity to Allah (alone) seeking His pleasure.

 

·         Al-Qubool(القبول): Acceptance that contradicts rejection.

 

·         To disbelieve in everything that is worshipped besides Allah

 

1. Knowledge (Al-'Ilm)

Knowledge of Allah and knowledge about the nature, concepts and methodology of worship are essential to the practice as well as the understanding of Islam. The beneficial knowledge is the one that leads to complete disassociation from false deities and to the devotion of intentions to Allah alone. Allah, the Most High, says:  “And know that none has the right to be worshipped but Allah and ask forgiveness for your sins, and also for the sin of believing men and believing women. And Allah knows well your moving about, and your place of rest in your home”Qur’an. Surah Muhammad, 47:19.

 

The Prophet Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) said: “He who died knowing (fully well) that there is no true God worthy of being worshipped except Allah entered al-Jannah (Paradise).” Sahih Al MuslimVol 1:39.

 

2. Certainty (Al-Yaqeen)

The testimony has to be made without any suspicion regarding its meaning. Allah, the Exalted, says: “Only those are the believers who have believed in Allah and His Messenger and never since doubted”. Qur’an, Surah al-Hujuraat, 49:15.

 

The Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace): “I bear witness that there is no true God worthy of being worshipped except Allah, and I am His Messenger. The slave of Allah who would meet Him without harboring any doubt about his (testimony) would enter al-Jannah (Paradise).” Sahih Al MuslimVol 1:40,41.

 

3. Purity and Sincerity (Al-Ikhlaas)

The intention of accepting Islam and performing all acts of worship must be purely devoted to Allah:“Say, (O Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)): Verily, I am commanded to worship Allah (alone) by obeying Him and doing religious deeds sincerely for Allah’s sake only and not to show off, and not to set up rivals with Allah in worship.” (Qur’an, Surah az-Zumar, 39:11). So, when one declares this testimony, he should be doing so solely for the sake of Allah, not for anyone else. Purity and sincerity is the opposite of Shirk (associating others in that which is due to Allah alone). The one who proclaims this Shahaadah (testimony) for any worldly gain has failed to meet this condition of Sincerity of woprship and has failed to meet Allah’s command, when He says: “Worship Allah, making the Religion pure and sincere for Him.”Qur’an, Surah az-Zumar, 39:14.

 

The Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) said: “Allah has forbidden the Fire upon one who says laa ilaaha illal-laah seeking by this the Face of Allah.”Sahih Al Bukhari Vol 8:431.

 

4. Truthfulness (As-Sidq)

Truthfulness paves the way for a meaningful understanding of this declaration. It strengthens the drive of man towards achieving knowledge about his Creator, Allah. The hypocrites utter the declaration, but they conceal rejection in their hearts:“They said with their tongues what is not in their Hearts.”Qur’an, Surah al-Fath, 48:11.

 

The heart is like the king and the limbs are the soldiers. The Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)said: “Truly there is a piece of flesh in the body if it become good (reformed) the whole body becomes good but if it gets spoilt the whole body becomes spoilt.”Sahih Al Muslim 1599, 3882 and Sahih Al Bukhari 1:49.

 

When the love of Allah fills the heart, truthfulness and honesty fill it too, but when desire gets to the heart, the way for corruption and hypocrisy becomes opened and man will utter what is not really in his heart. The whole and sound heart is the one free from:

 

a) Association of anyone /anything in the worship of Allah,

 

b) False pride and arrogance

 

c) Envy

 

d) Misery

 

e) Love for this life

 

f) Love for leadership and domination

 

g) Lust

 

h) Bid’ah

 

This is the kind of heart that fulfills the declaration of Shahaadah. This is known in the Qur’an as "Al-Qalb As-Saleem; the clean, sound, safe and whole heart,” and it is the thing that really counts on the Day of Reckoning :“The Day whereon neither wealth nor sons will avail except him who brings to Allah a clean heart[clean from Shirk (polytheism) and Nifâq (hypocrisy)].”(Qur’an, Surah ash-Shu’araa’, 26: 88-89).

 

5. Love (Al-Mahabah)

Love is:

a) To love Allah and His Messenger, Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace), more than all else,

 

b) To love what Allah and His Messenger (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) love

 

c) To hate or dislike what Allah and His Messenger (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) hate or dislike in all matters that are related to Islam. This is the true meaning of love in Islaam and these three elements form the foundations behind the concept of al-walaa wal-baraa.

 

The Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) said:  “Whoever possesses (the following) three qualities will relish the sweetness (delight) of Eemaan (Faith): The one to whom Allah and His Messenger becomes dearer than anything else; that he loves a person for Allah alone (i.e. to purely seek Allah and His Pleasure); that he hates to revert to Kufr (disbelief) after Allah has rescued him from it as he hates to be thrown into Hell.” Sahih Al Bhukari Vol 1:15 and Sahih Al Muslim 67.

 

The love of Allah and His Messenger Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) must be translated into following their orders. This negates the following innovators and/or their innovations. Those who introduce concepts and/or ways that are not according to Islamic teachings: like the mystics of Sufism and their so-called "Tareeqas(ways)" which have nothing to do with Islam. Their ideas originated from other religious concepts. They elevate their Sufi Sheikhs and leaders (Aqtab) to divine levels:"And of mankind are some who take (for worship) others besides Allah as rivals (to Allah). They love them as they love Allah. But those who believe love Allah more (than anything else)." Qur'an, Surah al-Baqarah, 2:165.

 

In the following narration, Abdullah bin Mas'ud (R) said: "The Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) said one statement and I said another. The Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) said: "Whoever dies while still invoking anything other than Allah as a rival to Allah, will enter Hell (Fire)." And I said, "Whoever dies without invoking anything as a rival to Allah, will enter Al-Jannah (Paradise)." Sahih Al Bukhar Vol 6:24.

 

The Love of Allah and His Message of Islam is related to the Knowledge of Him and of His Names and Attributes. The more the person knows of Allah, the love of Him becomes stronger. This makes the believer eager to meet Allah, see Him, and listen to His Words in the Hereafter. This becomes the goal and all the worldly attachment gets weaker and weaker. The spirit is lifted up. It aims high towards its Creator. It would not trap itself on any road that would lead to other than the submission to Allah alone. The person becomes motivated to comply with Allah's command to the best of his abilities. This produces the true happiness in this life and in the Hereafter.

 

6. Obedience (Al-Inqiyaad)

The testimony is fulfilled by obedience to Allah and His Messenger Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) and by safeguarding against what Allah forbids:“Whoever submits his face to Allah (i.e. follow Islam), while he is doing good (i.e. obey Allah and His Messenger Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) in all respects) has grasped the most trustworthy hand-hold” Qur’an, Surah Luqman 31:22.

 

The compliance to the declaration of the Shahaadah must be free of hesitation. Rather it is a matter of full submission. This is well illustrated in the saying of Allah: “It is not for a believer, man or woman, when Allah and his Messenger have decreed a matter that they should have any option in their decision. And whoever disobeys Allah and his Messenger, he has indeed strayed in a plain error.” Qur’an, Surah al-Ahzaab 33:36. The decrees of Allah and His Messenger are not subject to human evaluation. The Message is a Revelation. What it contains is for the benefit of man. Therefore, man’s submission in Islam is for his own good.

 

7. Acceptance (al-Qubool)

It is not enough to recognize the greatness of Islam and that it is the Truth, but this recognition must be ascertained by humble acceptance and humility. The adherence to the meaning of this declaration safeguards the believer from false pride, arrogance and disdainfulness: “Truly when it was said to them: laa ilaha illallaah (None has the right to be worshipped but Allah), they puffed themselves up with pride (i.e. denied it)”.Qur’an, Surah as-Saafaat, 37:35. The Muslim must realize that this declaration stands against bigoted and blind imitation and calls for an acceptance of the teachings of Islam according to the understanding of those who followed the correct path. They are the companions and those who follow their footsteps until the day of resurrection. This path is knows as the Path of as-Salafus-Saalih(righteous predecessors).

 

The Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) gave amazing parables for those who accept and those who reject the guidance and teachings of Islam. He said: “The example of guidance and knowledge with which Allah has sent me is like abundant rain falling on the earth, some of which was fertile soil that absorbed rain water and brought forth vegetation and grass in abundance. (And) another portion of it was hard and held the rain water and Allah benefited the people with it and they utilized it for drinking, making their animals drink from it and for irrigation of the land for cultivation. (And) a portion of it was barren which could neither hold the water nor bring forth vegetation (then that land gave no benefit). The first is the example of the person who comprehends Allah’s religion and gets benefit (from knowledge) which ِAllah has revealed through me (the Prophet) and learns and then teaches others. The last example is that of a person who does not care for it and does not take Allah’s guidance revealed through me (he is like that barren land). Sahih Al Bukhari Vol 1:79.

 

8. To disbelieve in everything that is worshipped besides Allah

Allah says: “Whoever disbelieves in everything worshiped other than Allah, and believes in Allah, then he has grasped the most trustworthy handhold that will never break. And Allah is the All Hearer All Knower” Qur’an.Surah Al Baqarah 2: 256

 

‘Abdul ‘Azeez bin ‘Abdullah Bin Baaz (rahimahullah)also mentions this condition of La ilaha illAllah as being eighth in his book “Ad Duroosul Muhimmah Li ‘Aamatil Ummah.”

 

Virtues of Laa Ilaha Illallah

Abu Sa`eed al-Khudri(R) said, that the Messenger of Allah (S) said: "Moses (AS) said: O Lord! Teach me something that I can remember You with and I can supplicate You with. He (T) said: Say 'Laa ilaaha ill Allah', O Musaa. He (Musaa) said: All of your servants say this. He (T) said: If the seven Heavens and those who dwell in them other than Me and the seven Earths are put into one pan (of the scale) and 'Laa ilaaha ill Allaah' is put into the other; 'Laa ilaaha ill Allah' would be heavier." [Ibn Hibbaan and Haakim]

 

The Messenger of Allah (S) said: "The best Dhikr (remembrance) is 'Laa ilaaha ill Allah' (There is no deity worthy of worship but Allah)..."

 

The Messenger of Allah (S) said: "A person from my Ummah will be summoned in the presence of all creatures on the Day of Judgement. Ninety-nine records (of his deeds) would be unfolded, each extending as far as the range of the vision can stretch, then he would be asked: 'Do you deny any of these deeds?' He will reply: 'No, My Lord.' He will be asked: 'Do you have any excuse or any good deed?' The man who will be scared will say: 'No' It will be said to him: 'Yes you have some good deeds. No iniquity will befall you.'

 

A card wll then be shown to him, on it will be written: 'Laa ilaaha ill Allah, Muhammad Rasool Allah.' He will say: 'O Allah! What cards and records are these.' It will be said to him: 'No injustice shall befall you.' The (ninety-nine) records will then be placed in one pan of the scale and the card on the other. The card will then outweigh the records." [At-Tirmidhi and Al-Haakim]

 

All of These Merits of the 'Kalimah' Are Summarized by Ibn Rajab As Follows:

- Al-Jannah is its reward.

- Uttering it before death will cause one to be admitted to the Jannah.

- It is a refuge from the Fire of Hell.

- It is a cause for a Muslim to be forgiven.

- It is the best of good deeds.

- It wipes out sins.

- It traverses all bariers in order to be accepted by Allah, the Almighty

- It is a statement whose pronouncer will be accepted by Allah.

- It is the best proclamation ever uttered by the Prophets.

- It is the best celebration of His praises.

- It is the best of deeds and it multiplies into many good deeds.

- It is a protection against Satan.

- It is a safety from the darkness and the punishment of the graves and from the Day of Resurrection.

- The eight doors of Paradise will be accessible to its pronouncer.

- People who pronounce it will certain come out of the Fire of Hell, even after they have been cast into it for falling short of observing its obligations. [b]

 

The Second Part of the Shahaadah

Muhammadun Aabduhu wa rasuluh means Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) is Allah’s salve and His Messenger. This is the second part of the declaration of the Shahaadah. It is the belief that Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) is the final and last Messenger of Allah. The only way to worship Allah is through the guidance and example set by Muhammad (May Allah honour him and grant Him Peace). This means that:

 

  1. To obey Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) what He commands.
  2. To avoid whatever He forbade and prohibited.
  3. To worship Allah as taught by Muhammad(May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)
  4. To believe and testify to the truth of everything He has informed us of.
  5. To believe that He is a slave and worshipper of Allah and not one to be worshipped And Whatever Allah told us about Him must be followed.

 

1. To obey Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) what He commands.

Say (O Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)): "Obey Allah and the Messenger (Muhammad)." But if they turn away, then Allah does not like the disbelievers.” Qur’an. Surah Ale Imran 3:32.

 

The Sunnah is an Inspiration from Allah and is not the Prophet's idea, thought or desire:

"Nor does he [Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)] speak of (his own) desire. It is only an Inspiration that is inspired." Qur'an, Surah an-Najm, 53:3-4. So, in obeying the Prophet's Sunnah we are obeying Allah. There should be no resistance to the way of the Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace). He (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) must be taken as a judge in all disputes as Allah clearly commands: "But no, by your Rabb (Allah), they can have no Faith, until they make you (O Muhammad) judge in all disputes between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decisions, and accept (them) fully with submission." Qur'an, Surah an-Nisaa’, 4:65.

 

Warning from Allah for those who disobey Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace), "And let those who oppose the Messenger's commandment (i.e. his Sunnah, legal ways, orders, acts of worship, statements, etc.) (Among the sects) beware, lest some Fitnah (disbelief, trials, afflictions, earthquakes, killing, overpowered by a tyrant, etc.) befall them, or a painful torment be inflicted on them." Qur'an, Surah an-Noor 24:63.

 

The Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) said:"He who does an act which our matter (i.e. our religion) is not in agreement with, will have it rejected." Sahih Al Bukhari 2697 (Vol 3:861) and Sahih Al Muslim 1718. The Sunnah of the Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) is surely safeguarded as Allah promised to save the Message of Islam from any human corruption. The following of the Sunnah of the Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) is the manifestation of the Declaration: "MUHAMMAD IS THE MESSENGER OF ALLAH": Say (O Muhammad to all mankind): "If you (really) love Allah then follow me (i.e. what I was trusted with, the Qur'an and Sunnah), Allah will love you and forgive you your sins. And Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful." Qur'an, Surah Ale-Imraan, 3:31.

 

2. To avoid whatever He forbade and prohibited.

"And whatsoever the Messenger, Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) gives you, take it, and whatsoever he forbids you, abstain (from it) and Fear Allah. Verily Allah is severe in punishment." Qur’an.Surah Hashr 59 :7.

 

It is not for a believer, man or woman, when Allâh and His Messenger (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace), have decreed a matter that they should have any option in their decision. And whoever disobeys Allâh and His Messenger [sal-Allâhu 'alayhi wa sallam], he has indeed strayed into a plain error.Qur’an.Surah Ahzab 33 : 36.

 

3. To worship Allah as taught by Muhammad(May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)

"He who obeys the Messenger (Muhammad-(May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)), has indeed obeyed Allah, but he who turns away, then We have not sent you (O Muhammad) as a watcher over them."Qur'an, Surah an-Nisaa’, 4:80.

 

The Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) said: "Whoever obeys me, he obeys Allah, and whoever disobeys me, he disobeys Allah, and whoever obeys the ruler I appoint, he obeys me, and whoever disobeys him, he disobeys me." Sahih Al Bukahri Vol. 9 : 251,  Sunan Nasia Vol. 5 : 4198.

 

He (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) also said:"All of my followers will enter Paradise except those who refuse." They said: 'O Allah's Messenger! Who will refuse?' He said,"Whoever obeys me will enter Paradise and whoever disobeys me is the one who refuses (to enter it)."Sahih Al Bukahri Vol. 9: 384. The matters discussing worship of Allah, discipline, orders, advice, approvals, and recommendations as detailed by Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) are collectively known as Sunnah. The Sunnah is also meant to emphasize the correct way of understanding the Deen of Islam, in contrast with the ways of deviations and (or) innovations.

 

The obedience to Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) is an Order from Allah:"And whatsoever the Messenger (Muhammad-(May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)) gives you, take it, and whatsoever he forbids you, abstain (from it) and fear Allah. Verily, Allah is severe in punish-ment." Qur'an, Surah al-Hashr, 59:7.

 

The meaning of the above ayah (statement) is very well illustrated in the following narration:

 

Narrated 'Alqama(R): Abdullaah (bin Mas'ud) ® said, "Allah curses those ladies who practice tattooing and those who get themselves tattooed, and those ladies who remove the hair from their faces and those who make artificial spaces between their teeth to look more beautiful whereby they change Allah's creation. Sahih Al Bukahri Vol. 7: 826. "His saying reached a lady from Bani Asd called Um Ya'qub who came (to Abdullaah) and said: "I have come to know that you have cursed such-and-such (ladies)?" He replied: "Why should not I curse these whom Allah's Messenger cursed and who are cursed in Allah's Book!" Um Ya'qub said, "I have read the whole Qur'an and I have not found in it what you say." He said, "Verily if you have read it (i.e. the Qur'an), you have found it. Didn't you read: "And whatsoever the Messenger gives you, take it and whatsoever he forbids you, abstain (from it)." She replied, "Yes, I did." He said, "Verily, Allah's Messenger forbade these things." She said, "But I see your wife doing these things?" He said, "Go and watch her." She went and watched her but could not see anything in support of her statement. On that he said, "If my wife were as you thought, I would not keep her in my company (i.e. I would divorce her)." Sahih Al Bukahri Vol. 7: 822.

 

Two lessons must be taken from this: i) The Sunnah is also the Shari'ah ii) The hatred and disassociation shown to those who oppose the Sunnah. The Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) said: “He who does an act which our matter (i.e. our religion)is not in agreement with, will have I it rejected.” Sahih Al Bukahri Vol.  9: 449.

 

4. To believe and testify to the truth of everything He has informed us of.

In obeying the Prophet’s (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) Sunnah, we are obeying Allah.There should be no resistance to any of the teachings of the Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace). He (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) must be taken as a judge and final authority in all disputes, for Allah clearly commands: “But no, by your Rubb (Lord) they can have no faith, until they make you (O Muhammad)judge in all disputes between them, and find in themselves no resistance against your decisions, and accept (them) fully with submission.” Quran.Surah An-Nisa 4:65.

 

This Ayah proves that a person can have no faith (iman) until he/she submits unconditionally to the commands which includes rulings, orders, disciplines, advice, recommendations, approvals, and actions of Prophet Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace). Allah sets an example for us in the form of Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace): “Verily in the Messenger of Allah you have the best example for him who looks unto Allah and the Last Day and remembers Allah much.” Qur’an.Surah Al-Ahzab 33:21.

 

So Allah commands us to follow the Sunnah and this would be impossible unless the Sunnah had been preserved.

 

The Sunnah of Prophet (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) is surely safeguarded as Allah has promised to save the Message of Islam from any distortion. Allah says: “Verily, it is We who have sent down the Zikr(i.e. the Quran and the Sunnah)and surely, We are its Preservers.” Qur’an.Surah Al-Hijr 15:9.

 

'Zikr' in its general form stands for both the Quran and the Sunnah as the Quran uses this term to also mean Sunnah as proven by the following Ayah: “With clear signs and Books (We sent the Messengers). And We have also sent down unto you (O Muhammad)the Zikr [reminder and the advice(i.e. the Qur’an)],so that you may explain clearly to men that what has been sent down for them and so that they may give thought.” Qur’an.Surah An-Nahl 16:44.

 

This Ayah confirms that the Sunnah is preserved. Thus both the Quran and the Sunnah have been preserved.

 

5. To believe that He is a slave and worshipper of Allah and not one to be worshipped. And Whatever Allah told us about Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) must be followed.

 

“Is it a wonder for mankind that We have sent Our inspiration to a man from among themselves (Prophet Muhammad) (saying):”Warn mankind (of the coming torment in Hell) and give good news to those who believe (in the Oneness of Allaah & in His Prophet-r), that they shall have with their Rabb (Allaah) the rewards of their good deeds.”?  Qur’an, Surah Younus, 10: 2.

 

"Verily, there has come unto you a Messenger (Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)) from amongst yourselves (i.e. whom you know well). It grieves him that you should receive any injury or difficulty. He (Muhammad- (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)) is anxious over you (to be rightly guided, to repent to Allah, and beg Him to pardon and forgive your sins, in order that you may enter Paradise and be saved from the punishment of the Hell-Fire), for the believers (He-is) full of pity, kind, and Merciful."Qur'an, Surah at-Tawbah, 9: 128).

 

"O Prophet (Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace))! Verily, We have sent you as a witness, and a bearer of glad tidings and a warner, And as one who invites to Allah {i.e. to worship none but Allah} by His leave, and as a lamp spreading light (through your instructions from the Qur'an and Sunnah)."Qur'an, Surah al-Ahzaab, 33: 45-46.

 

Prophet Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) was a man as mentioned in the Qur’an: "Say (O Muhammad- (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)): "I am a man like you. It has been inspired to me that your Ilaah (God) is One Ilaah (i.e., Allah). So, whoever hopes for the meeting with his Rabb (Allah), let him work righteousness and associate none as a partner in the worship of his Rabb (Allah)." Qur'an, Surah al-Kahf 18:110.

 

Prophet Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) did not knew about the unseen as mentioned in the Qur’an: “Say (O Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace)) I possess no power of benefit or hurt to myself except as Allaah will. If I had the knowledge of the Ghaib(unseen), I should have secured for myself an abundance of wealth, and no evil should have touched me: I am but a warner, and a bringer of glad tidings unto people who be­lieve.” Qur’an, Surah al-A’raaf 7:188.

 

Prophet Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) was selected by Allah for special purpose of conveying His message: “O Messenger (Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace))! Proclaim (the Message) which has been sent down to you from your Lord. And if you do not, then you have not conveyed His Message. Allah will protect you from mankind. Verily, Allah guides not the people who disbelieve.”Qur’an, Surah al-Maidah 5:67.

 

Narrated 'Umar(R): I heard the Prophet Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) saying, "Do not exaggerate in praising me as the Christians praised the son of Mary, for I am only a Slave. So, call me the Slave of Allah and His Apostle."  Sahih Al Bukhari 4:654. [2]

 

SUMMARY

The declaration that Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) is the Messenger of Allah is an integral part of faith. Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) must be trusted in all that he informed us about Islam. He (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) must be obeyed in all that he had ordered and we must stay away from all that he forbade. The obedience to Muhammad (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) is an obedience to Allah. He left us with all that leads to Paradise and warned us from all that leads to Hell.

 

IS IT ENOUGH TO "SAY" Shahaadah?

 

The Belief in the Oneness and Uniqueness of Allah (Tawheed in Arabic) does not only mean to accept that there is no Creator but Allah, and that Allah is the Sovereign Rabb(Lord). But believing Allah by Muhammad’s (May Allah honour Him and grant Him Peace) way is also very important for every Muslim who wants to enter Heaven. Therefore, if a person was to say only one part of this declaration or not acknowledge or have belief in either part- then their belief is incomplete and is not incompliance with Islamic creed (Aqeedah). Therefore as a Muslim we should always Pray to Allah (Glory be to Him) "O believers, observe your duty to Allah with right observance, and die not except as Muslims [complete state of surrender, submission, obedience to Allah]" Qur’an.Surah Ale-Imran 3: 102 [3]

 

References

[a] [b] Dr. Saleh Al-Fouzan, http://www.protectedpearls.com/shahadah.htm

[1] Eeman made easy, Book of Muhammad al-Jibaly, Al-Kitab & as – Sunnah publishing.

[2] http://www.almuflihoon.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=64:the-conditions-of-laa-ilaaha-illallaah-muhammadun-rasoolullaah-&catid=34:aqeedah&Itemid=140

[3] http://ilmularabiyyah.wordpress.com/2012/03/16/sahadahsayit/

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