Everything Happens For The Good

Date: 28th August 2015; 12th Dhu al-Qa’dah 1436

The season of Hajj is running and so this week’s Khutbah will be dedicated towards a discussion on the history of the Hajj, the importance of engaging in the pilgrimage and many other miscellaneous issues.

As we all know, the first man ever to be created by Allah (Subḥānahu Wa Ta’Ala), was Prophet Adam (Alayhi As-Salām). Having eaten the forbidden fruit our father was banished from the Paradise along with his wife. However, they were given another chance to replenish themselves. Now some of us may ask that Allah knows everything, so why did He have to go into making that fruit in Paradise and later on this costed Adam (Alayhi As-Salām) his position in Jannah. Everything that Allah does has its purposes. Adam (Alayhi As-Salām)’s departure from Jannah was already destined to him, the moment he was created because Allah wanted him to be the “Khalifah of this Dunya”. This is proven through this ayah:

And [mention, O Muhammad], when your Lord said to the angels, “Indeed, I will make upon the earth a successive authority.” They said, “Will You place upon it one who causes corruption therein and sheds blood, while we declare Your praise and sanctify You?” Allah said, “Indeed, I know that which you do not know.”

Surah Al-Baqarah, Ayah 30 (2:30) Translation: Sahih International

The destination of Adam (Alayhi As-Salām) was preordained on him, way before his creation. Now for the reason why Allah tested Adam (Alayhi As-Salām) with the forbidden fruit was to make him sin so that once he repented, Allah would forgive him. This may sound arbitrary but the very reason Allah made us is to engage in sins so that when we repent He forgives us. This is proven through this Hadith:

The Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) once mentioned, “If you were not to commit sins, Allah would sweep you out of existence and would replace you by other people who would commit sins, and then would ask forgiveness from Allah.”

Reference: Sahih Muslim, Book of Tawbah, Hadiths- 9, 10, 11

Surprising isn’t it? The very reason Allah created sins is for us to commit it and if we are sincere and exercise upon our Imaan, He will place a sense of guilt in our hearts- making us ask for His forgiveness and In Shaa Allah we will be forgiven. Even in the heavens, Prophet Musa (Alayhi As-Salām) once blamed Prophet Adam (Alayhi As-Salām) for eating the fruit and making us lose Jannah. Hadith states:

Abu Hurairah (Radi Allahu Anhu) narrated that the Messenger (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: “Adam and Moses argued with each other. Moses said to Adam: ‘Your sin expelled you from Paradise.’ Adam said: ‘ You are Moses whom Allah selected as His messenger and as the one to whom He spoke directly. Yet you blame me for a thing which had already been written in my fate before my Creation?” Allah’s Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said twice, “So Adam outclassed Moses.”

Reference: Sahih Bukhari

Funny isn’t it? Even Prophets can argue with one another in the heavens. Allah wanted this argument to proceed and also shared this incident with the Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) so that the Muslim Ummah can never argue about the fate which was placed upon the human race.

So why Allah would do all this? We could have even worshipped Him Jannah, right? The answer to this question lies with the qualities of Allah. Allah is known as “Ar-Rahman and Ar-Rahim” meaning “The Most Gracious and The Most Merciful”. In order to display the majesty of His name, Allah created beings like us and the jinn so that when we sin, Allah is ready to forgive us, that way these two names of Allah are glorified. That is why we were created so as to glorify the title of Ar-Rahman. If we just ruminate about this, we should be able to decipher the amount of honor Allah has given us as human beings. By being Muslims, we must protect this honor during our lifetime.

Now returning to the main discussion. One of the most important tasks Allah gave Prophet Adam (Alayhi As-Salām) was to build a House for worshipping Allah. And thus, the House of Kaaba was born. Allah taught Adam (Alayhi As-Salām) on how to make Tawbah to his Creator by making him sin and which gave rise to a beautiful dua.

Rabbana zalamna anfusina wa il lam taghfir lana wa tarhamna lana kunan minal-khasireen

Translation: They said, “Our Lord, we have wronged ourselves, and if You do not forgive us and have mercy upon us, we will surely be among the losers.”

Surah Al-A’raf, Ayah 23 (7:23) Translation: Sahih International

As the Sunnah of the first man to be ever created, we must recite this dua often so as to ask for forgiveness from our Lord. The House of Kaaba is a blessing from our Lord and Allah made Mecca in such a way so that even if millions of people congregate together, there won’t be deficiency from serving the Muslims. Allah says in the Quran:

Indeed, the first House [of worship] established for mankind was that at Makkah – blessed and a guidance for the worlds.

Surah Al-Imran, Ayah 96 (3:96) Translation: Sahih International

The place at Mecca is blessed enough to sustain the huge population of the Muslim Ummah. It used to be once a desolate land but now Allah made it the main area of worship for those who are righteous. Allah continues by saying:

In it are clear signs [such as] the standing place of Abraham. And whoever enters it shall be safe. And [due] to Allah from the people is a pilgrimage to the House – for whoever is able to find thereto a way. But whoever disbelieves – then indeed, Allah is free from need of the worlds.

Surah Al-Imran, Ayah 97 (3:97) Translation: Sahih International

Another barqat from Allah in worshipping at Masjid-al-Haram is the amount of blessing we accumulate by perform just one rakah of Allah. Hadith informs:

Narrated from Jabir (Radi Allahu Anhu), that the Messenger of Allah (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: “One prayer in my mosque is better than one thousand prayers elsewhere, except al-Masjid al-Haram, and one prayer in al-Masjid al-Haram is better than one hundred thousand prayers elsewhere.”

References: Musnad of Imam Ahmad (Rahmatullah Allaih) & Sunan Ibn Majah, Hadith- 1406. This Hadith was classed as Sahih by al-Mundhiri (Rahmatullah Allaih) and al-Busayri (Rahmatullah Allaih). Al-Albani (Rahmatullah Allaih) said: Its Isnaad is Sahih according to the conditions of the two Shaykhs [Imam al-Bukhari & Imam Muslim]. End quote from Irwa’ al-Ghaleel (4/146).

The House of the Kaaba shows the direction to the entire Muslim community when it engages in Salah.

One of the clear signs in Mecca (as a verse in the Quran tells us) is the Maqam Ibrahim where Prophet Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām) stood. It has been narrated that when Prophet Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām) and his son Ismail (Alayhi As-Salām) were building the Kaaba, he couldn’t reach the top so he put a rock under his feet, and as a result of the pressure exerted from his feet on the stone, an imprint of his foot was left on it. There is also another narration that says that when Prophet Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām) visited his son Ismail (Alayhi As-Salām) Ismail’s wife asked him to bend down so she could shake off the dust from his head and face and wash his feet. He put his right foot on a rock for her to do so, leaving a footprint there.

Another miracle which took place during Prophet Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām)’s time was regarding how Mecca was built, let’s take a stroll back to the past.

One day, Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām) woke up and asked his wife Hajra to get her son and prepare for a long journey. In a few days Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām) started out with his wife Hajra and their son Ismail (Alayhi As-Salām). The child was still nursing and not yet weaned. Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām) walked through cultivated land, desert, and mountains until he reached the desert of the Arabian Peninsula and came to an uncultivated valley having no fruit, no trees, no food, and no water. The valley had no sign of life. After Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām) had helped his wife and child to dismount, he left them with a small amount of food and water which was hardly enough for 2 days. He turned around and walked away. He wife hurried after him asking: “Where are you going Ibrahim, leaving us in this barren valley?”

Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām) did not answer her, but continued walking. She repeated what she had said, but he remained silent. Finally she understood that he was not acting on his own initiative. She realized that Allah had commanded him to do this. She asked him: “Did Allah command you to do so?”

He replied: “Yes.” Then his great wife said: “We are not going to be lost, since Allah Who has commanded you is with us.”

After Prophet Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām) went past some distance, he looked back and found his family was nowhere to be found. He then made this amazing dua:

Our Lord, I have settled some of my descendants in an uncultivated valley near Your sacred House, our Lord, that they may establish prayer. So make hearts among the people incline toward them and provide for them from the fruits that they might be grateful.

Surah Ibrahim, Ayah 37 (14:37) Translation: Sahih International

This is how a Muslim man should be. When he thinks about his wives and children worshipping Allah, his heart should become tender and his eyes cool out of pleasure. The Quran reveals one amazing dua:

“Our Lord, Give us, from our spouses and our children, coolness of eyes and make us heads of the God-fearing.

Surah Al-Furqan, Ayah 74 (25:74) Translation: Mariful Quran

In context to this ayah, is the following Tafsir:

According to the explanation put forward by Hasan al-Basri (Rahmatullah Allaih) one can draw solace from his dear ones (wife and children) if they submit to the way of Allah. That is the true bliss for a man, and if the good health and well-being of the wife and children is also added to this, it is also in order.

What is alluded here is that the righteous servants of God do not care about correcting themselves only, but also take care of the virtuous actions of their children and spouse, and keep trying for their improvement, and it is a part of their efforts that they pray Allah to make them take the right path. The second sentence of this verse says: “… and make us heads of the God-fearing.” Apparently this is a prayer for getting a high status and a source of pride, which is forbidden by other injunctions of the Holy Qur’an. The Qur’an says at another place: “As for that ultimate Abode (the Hereafter), We assign it to those who intend neither haughtiness on earth nor mischief (28:83). And the (best) end is for the God-fearing – 28:83”. Hence, some scholars have commented about this sentence of the verse that everyone is the head or Imam of his family. Thus, if his family members become God fearing, he will automatically be their head or Imam. Therefore, the final outcome is that prayer was not meant for personal aggrandizement, but for the family members to follow the right path.

Reference: Mariful Quran, Volume 6, Tafseer of Surah Al-Furqan, Ayah 74, pp. 518-519.

One of the duties of the parents is to ensure proper teachings of the Deen to their children. Otherwise the children have the right to intercede against their parents. Having a religious child in the family is a great blessing for the parents. When the parents die, the child will be engaged in worshipping Allah and will leave a legacy for his/her parents by praying for them. Many of us, especially in the Indian subcontinent when someone dies, we employ Imams to pray for our dead relatives, when someone dies, the children are the closest ones, they should be the ones to pray for their dead parents. Hadith claims:

Allah’s Apostle, (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: “Upon death, man’s deeds will (definitely) stop except for three deeds, namely: a continuous charitable fund, endowment or goodwill; knowledge left for people to benefit from; and pious righteous and God-fearing child who continuously prays Allah, the Almighty, for the soul of his parents.”

Reference: Sahih Muslim

The effect of Imams praying for someone else’s dead parent aren’t the same as the children praying themselves. One example can be given such that when we have a place which is itchy and we ask someone else to scratch that place for us, it won’t have much of an effect unless we scratch that place ourselves.

Ibrahim (Alayhi As-Salām) made a dua on our behalf so that we will able to conduct Hajj without any worry.

And [mention] when Abraham said, “My Lord, make this a secure city and provide its people with fruits – whoever of them believes in Allah and the Last Day.”

Surah Al-Baqarah, Ayah 126 (2:126) Translation: Sahih International

Now for the history of the Zam zam water:

Ismail (Alayhi As-Salām)’s mother went on suckling Ismail and drinking from the water (she had) when the water in the water skin had been used up, she became thirsty and her child also became thirsty, she started looking at him (Ismail) tossing in agony. She left him, for she could not endure looking at him, and found that the mountain of As-Safa was the nearest mountain to her on that land. She too on it and started looking at the valley keenly so that she might see somebody, but she could not see anybody. Then she descended for As Safa and when she reached the valley, she tucked up her robe and ran in the valley like a person in distress and trouble till she crossed the valley and reached the mountain of Al Marwa. There she stood and started looking expecting to see somebody, but she could not see anybody. She repeated that running between Safa and Marwa seven times.

The Prophet Muhammad (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) said: “This is the source of the tradition of the Sa’y (rituals of the hajj, pilgrimage) the going of people between them (As-Safa and Al-Marwa). When she reached Al Marwa (for the last time) she heard a voice and she asked herself to be quiet and listened attentively. She heard the voice again and said: “O whoever you maybe! You have made me hear your voice; have you got something to help me?” And behold! She saw an angel at the place of Zam zam, digging the earth with his heel (or his wing) till water flowed from that place. She started to make something like a basin around it, using her hand in this way, and started filling her water skin with water with her hands and the water was flowing out water she had scooped some of it.” The Prophet (Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam) added: “May Allah bestow mercy on Ismail’s mother! Had she let the Zam Zam flow without trying to control it, or had she not scooped from that water to fill her water skin, Zam zam would have been a stream flowing on the surface of the earth.”

It is Allah who fulfills the needs of the human beings, those who rely on Allah, Allah will provide him/her with the provision needed. Everything Allah does has more than one reasons whether we can figure them out or not but we need to believe whatever Allah does is for the best. With this, we are ending this week’s Khutbah.

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