By: Sayyed Muhammad Hussein Fadlullah (ra)
Translated by: Manal SamhatHow does Allah, The Most Exalted, want the Muslim community to act in life and what kind of relations does He want it to establish among its members? How does He want this community to open up on Him, constantly renewing its belief in Him and fear Him in a way that they will tremble if they mention Him?
At first, Allah, The Most Exalted, wants us to establish among the community of believers a covenant of faith. He wants every believer to feel in his heart and mind the brotherhood with all believers. He, the Most Exalted, says that all believers are but brothers. But such brotherhood is superior to that of linage, since it is based on the relationship with the creator of one's father and mother who created all people and not merely a blood relation with one's father or mother.
Such a brotherhood of faith starts first in the mind through believing in the oneness of Allah, and then in the heart through the love of Allah before it is demonstrated in life through obeying our creator.
The First responsibility this brotherhood initiates lies in that every believer should follow up the relations among believers, and whenever he sees a difference among two of them, whether a husband and wife or other believers, he has to set it right to restore the relationship of brotherhood among them and do not enable the differences to affect their life or the welfare of the community. This is true even with respect to Muslim groups (tribes, parties, sects and the like). He calls on us to and if two parties of the believers quarrel, make peace between them so that the Muslim community would maintain internal peace, lest the community will fall and be corrupted. Thus Allah, The Most Exalted, wants the believing community to open up on Him to be afraid from His wrath and punishment and obey all what He has commanded.
Allah emphasized this command in the Anfal Surah: “So fear Allah, and keep straight the relations between yourselves: Obey Allah and His Messenger, if ye do believe. Obey Allah in all what He commanded in His Books, as well as the Sunnah of His Messenger – since obeying the Messenger is obeying Allah If ye do love Allah, Follow me: Allah will love you and forgive you your sins” (3:13).
Who are the believers?
They only are the (true) believers whose hearts feel fear when Allah is mentioned, and when His revelations are recited unto them they increase their faith, and who trust in their Lord;
Wherewith Allah guides all who seek His good pleasure to ways of peace and safety, and leads them out of darkness, by His will, unto the light- guides them to a path that is straight.
When they are invited to Allah and His Messenger that he may judge between them is only to say: “We hear and we obey; and these it is that are the successful”.
It is such as obey Allah and His Messenger, and fear Allah and do right, that will win (in the end).
Not only their hearts became full of fear when Allah the creator of the Heavens and whom all glory belongs, but also they are the ones whom when they listen to Allah's verses their faith is consolidated, since these verses are but a light that illuminates their minds hearts and lives. Those whom if they fear the future and the unexpected challenges, they will rely on God to protect them.
Then Allah talks about the trails of these Muslims: “Those who keep up prayer and spend (benevolently) out of what We have given them. Such in truth are the believers: they have grades of dignity with their Lord, and forgiveness, and generous sustenance:For belief is not a word. It is in the mind that feels the glory of Allah and act accordingly in obeying Him and His Messenger.”
There is also another point that the Quran describes: It is the qualities of hypocrites who claim to believe but do not practice this belief. Those people say we believe in Allah and the Messenger, professing the two testimonies, and say that they are ready to obey; “They say: "We believe in Allah and in the messenger, and we obey" but even after that, some of them turn away: they are not (really) Believers.
But when their verbal expression is put into practice they will not act accordingly. And they say: We believe in Allah and in the Messenger and we obey; then a party of them turns back after this, and these are not believers. When they are summoned to Allah and His messenger, in order that He may judge between them, behold some of them decline (to come).
If they are called to accept the ruling of Allah to judge among them they will refuse, although Allah says in An-Nisa chapter that belief means that one should accept Allah's judgment.
But no, by the Lord, they can have no (real) Faith, until they make thee judge in all disputes between them, and find in their souls no resistance against Thy decisions, but accept them with the fullest conviction. Those people when they are called to Allah and His Messenger that he may judge between them, lo! a party of them turn aside.
They will not accept the judgment if it is not in their side .And they say they want to resort the state law. But when they find that the Shariah will rule in their favour they will accept its ruling: And if the truth be on their side, they come to him quickly, obedient.
Is it that there is a disease in their hearts? or do they doubt, or are they in fear, that Allah and His Messenger will deal unjustly with them? Nay, it is they themselves who do wrong
These are not the traits of the believers. On the contrary, the believers are those whomake thee judge in all disputes between them, and find in their souls no resistance against Thy decisions, but accept them with the fullest conviction
Lastly, there is an invitation that Allah has made to the believers who commit sins. He opened for them the door of true repentance in which one pledges not to go back to committing sins and disobey in Allah.
He says: O ye who believe! Turn to Allah with sincere repentance: In the hope that your Lord will remove from you your ills and admit you to Gardens beneath which Rivers flow,- the Day that Allah will not permit to be humiliated the Prophet and those who believe with him. Their Light will run forward before them and by their right hands, while they say, "Our Lord! Perfect our Light for us, and grant us Forgiveness: for Thou hast power over all things.
Thus Allah has opened for us the door of Repentance that is bigger than the distance between earth and the sky. He is the One that accepts repentance from His Servants and forgives sins: and He knows all that ye do.
* The aforementioned is an edited Friday sermon.