Bestowal of Friday upon Muhammad’s Ummah
December 23 2021 10:43 PM
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Allah, The Exalted, endowed the Ummah of Muhammad sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam with distinct characteristics – in this worldly life and the Hereafter – that were not conferred upon any of the nations before it. Although it is the last nation to arise in this worldly life, it surpasses all preceding nations in status, for it is a witness over them all. Its divine law (Shari‘ah) and its divine book (the Qur’an) will not be abrogated unto the Day of Resurrection, and all previous nations were commanded to follow its religion, in addition to many other special merits.
It was narrated on the authority of Bahz ibn Hakeem, narrating from his father, from his grandfather, that the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam (may Allah exalt his mention), said: “On the Day of Resurrection, we will complete seventy nations, of whom we are the last and the best.” [Ibn Maajah, Al-Albaani: Hasan]
He, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, also said: “My nation was made the best of all nations.” [Ahmad, Al-Albaani: Hasan]
Moreover, it was narrated on the authority of Mu‘aawiyah ibn Haydah, may Allah be pleased with him, that he heard the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, say: “You are the completion of seventy nations, and you are the best of them and the most honourable of them in the Sight of Allah.” [Ibn Maajah, Al-Albaani: Hasan]
Despite existing after the past nations, the Muslim Ummah precedes them all in merit, and this is an honour for its Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, the master of mankind. Allah, The Exalted, Says (what means): {You are the best nation produced [as an example] for mankind.} [Qur’an 3:110]
Ibn Katheer, may Allah have mercy upon him, said: “The Muslim Ummah attained such unparalleled precedence in all aspects of goodness because of its Prophet, Muhammad, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, for he is the noblest of creation and the most honourable Messenger in the Sight of Allah, who sent him with the perfect and complete Shari‘ah that was never given to any Prophet or Messenger before him. By following his Sunnah, a few deeds thereof are more rewardable than the many deeds performed by other nations.”
It was narrated on the authority of Abu Hurairah, may Allah be pleased with him, that he heard the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, say: “We (Muslims) are the last (nation to arise) but (we will be) the foremost on the Day of Resurrection, though the former nations were given the Scriptures before us, and this (Friday) was their day, the celebration of which was made obligatory on them but they differed about it so Allah guided us to it, and the people came after us with regard to it: the Jews tomorrow (Saturday) and the Christians the day after tomorrow (Sunday).” [Muslim]
Ibn Hajar, may Allah have mercy upon him, said: “It means that this Ummah, even though it was the last nation to emerge, shall surpass all past nations in the Hereafter. Muslims will be the first people to be gathered on the Day of Resurrection, the first to be reckoned, the first to be judged among, and the first to enter Paradise.”
Al-Qaadhi ‘Iyaadh, may Allah have mercy upon him, said: “As for his saying, ‘We (Muslims) are the last (nation to arise) but (we will be) the foremost on the Day of Resurrection,’ it was said that the Muslim Ummah is the last nation in time but it exceeds all previous nations in merit, and Muslims shall be the first among whom Allah, The Exalted, will judge on the Day of Resurrection, and they will enter Paradise before all nations as well.”
Ibn al-Jawzi, may Allah have mercy upon him, said: “We are the last nation in time, but we shall be the first to enter Paradise. It was also said that since the Jews chose Saturday (Sabbath) and the Christians chose Sunday and Allah guided us to Friday, which precedes those two days, then we precede them in this worldly life and shall precede them in the Hereafter as well.”
Ibn Rajab, may Allah have mercy upon, said: “His saying, ‘We (Muslims) are the last (nation to arise),’ means the last chronologically; the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, was the last Prophet of Allah and his Ummah is the last of all the nations. His saying, ‘but (will be) the foremost,’ means that it surpasses all nations in merit and honour in the Sight of Allah. Allah, The Exalted, Says (what means): {You are the best nation produced [as an example] for mankind.} [Qur’an 3:110]
Friday is the master of days and the best day upon which the sun rises. It is a day of celebration for Muslims that recurs every week. It was narrated on the authority of ‘Abdullah ibn ‘Abbaas, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallamsaid: “This is a day of ‘Eid (a day of celebration) which Allah has chosen for the Muslims. So whoever comes to the Friday prayer, let him perform Ghusl (ritual bath) and if he has perfume then let him apply some; and I urge you to use the Siwaak (tooth stick).” [Ibn Maajah, Al-Albaani: Hasan]
Allah, The Exalted, singled out the Muslim Ummah with the distinct bestowal of Friday and misguided the Jews and Christians from this honour, as they favoured instead Saturday and Sunday respectively. It was narrated on the authority of Abu Hurairah, may Allah be pleased with him, that he heard the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, say: “We are the last (nation to emerge) but the foremost on the Day of Resurrection, and are the first to enter Paradise, even though they were given the Book before us and we were given it after them. They disagreed and Allah guided us aright on whatever they disagreed regarding the truth. And it was this day of theirs about which they disagreed, but Allah guided us to it, and that is Friday. So today (Friday) is for us, tomorrow is for the Jews, and the day after tomorrow is for the Christians.” [Muslim]
An-Nawawi, may Allah have mercy upon him, said: “As for his saying, ‘it was this day of theirs about which they disagreed, but Allah guided us to it,’ Al-Qaadhi said, ‘It seems that the veneration of Friday was deemed obligatory on them without specification, and it was left to be determined by their Ijtihaad (scholarly reasoning) to perform their rituals on it, but they disagreed and Allah did not guide them to it while He ordained it upon this Ummah clearly and did not leave it to be determined by their Ijtihaad; accordingly, they [the Muslims] won the privilege of venerating Friday.”
Ibn Hajar, may Allah have mercy upon him, said: “The Hadith clearly underlines the merits of this Ummah that exceed the merits of the previous nations, may Allah bless it.”
Ibn al-Qayyim, may Allah have mercy upon him, said in the course of discussing Friday: “... It is superior to all days of the week because of the obligatory and recommended acts of worship that are especially performed on it ... In comparison to other days, Friday is like the month of Ramadan to other months. The hour in which supplication is answered on Friday is like Laylatul Al-Qadr (Night of Decree) in Ramadan. Therefore, whoever avails himself of Friday as due, will avail himself of his whole week; whoever avails himself of Ramadan as due, will avail himself of his whole year, and whoever avails himself of his Haj as due, will avail himself of his whole life span. This is because Friday is the standard of the week, Ramadan is the standard of the year, and Haj is the standard of the lifetime.”
There are many Ahaadith (pl. of Hadith) that highlighted the virtues and distinct characteristics of Friday, including the following ones:
lIt was narrated on the authority of Aws ibn Aws, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Among the most excellent of your days is Friday; on it Adam was created, on it he died, on it the Trumpet will be blown (to announce the Hour), and on it all creatures will swoon (sink into a fainting with horror), so invoke more blessings on me that day, for your prayers will be presented to me.” They said: “O Messenger of Allah, how will our prayers be presented to you when your body has decomposed?” He said: ‘Allah, The Exalted, has forbidden the earth from consuming the bodies of the Prophets.” [Abu Daawood, Al-Albaani: authentic]
It was narrated on the authority of Abu Hurairah, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “The best day the sun rises over is Friday; on it Adam was created; on it he was admitted to Paradise; and on it he was expelled from it.” [Muslim]
The author of Riyaadh Al-Afhaam fee Sharh ‘Umdat Al-Ahkaam said: “It seems that these specified events are not mentioned in the context of enumerating the virtues of Friday, because expelling Adam from Paradise and the occurrence of the Last Hour cannot be classified as virtues. Rather, it is a listing of significant events that happened or shall happen on that day (Friday) to urge the slave of Allah to be well-prepared for it by performing righteous deeds qualifying him to receive the mercy of Allah, The Exalted, or to be spared potential adversities.”
lThe forgiveness of sins and misdeeds committed between the two Fridays for those who attended the Friday prayer, as evidenced by a Hadith cited by Al-Bukhari. It was narrated on the authority of Salmaan al-Faarisi, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Any man who performs Ghusl on Friday, cleans himself as best as he can, oils his hair or applies whatever perfume available in his house, sets forth for the mosque, does not separate two people (to make a seat for himself), and offers the voluntary prayers he wishes to offer then listens attentively while the Imaam delivers the sermon, he will have all his sins between that time and the last Friday forgiven.” [Muslim]
The version cited by Muslim reads: “He who performed ablution well then came to the Friday prayer and listened attentively (to the Khutbah), his sins between that time and (the last) Friday would be forgiven with three days extra; and he who touched pebbles has committed Laghw (engaged in futile activity).”
lFriday includes an hour during which the supplications of a Muslim are definitely answered. Abu Hurairah, may Allah be pleased with him, narrated that the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “There is an hour on Friday during which if a Muslim is standing in prayer asking Allah for something good, Allah will give it to Him.” [Muslim]
lWhoever attends the Friday prayer from its start (the first hour) earns abundant rewards, as evidenced by the Hadith narrated on the authority of Abu Hurairah, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “The one who performs Ghusl (similar to the Ghusl) of Janaabah on Friday and then goes (to the mosque to perform the Friday prayer) is like one who offers a camel as a sacrifice, and the one who comes at the second hour is like one who offers a cow, and the one who comes at the third hour is like one who offers a horned ram, and the one who comes at the fourth hour is like one who offers a hen, and the one who comes at the fifth hour is like one who offers an egg. And when the Imaam comes out, the angels come and listen to the mention of Allah (the Khutbah).” [Al-Bukhari]
Since Allah, The Exalted, singled out the Muslim Ummah with Friday, the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, used to venerate it and perform special acts of worship and good deeds on that day in particular. One of the special acts of worship prescribed for that day is invoking peace and blessings on the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, abundantly (more than on other days of the week).
It was narrated on the authority of Aws ibn Aws, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Among the most excellent of your days is Friday, so invoke more blessings on me that day for your prayers will be presented to me.” [Abu Daawood, Al-Albaani: authentic] Moreover, it was narrated on the authority of Abu Ad-Dardaa’, may Allah be pleased with him, that the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Invoke blessings upon me abundantly on Friday, for it is a witnessed day; the angels witness it.” [Ibn Maajah and At-Tabaraani, Al-Albaani: Hasan]
Ibn al-Qayyim may Allah have mercy upon him, said: “The Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, is the master of all people, and Friday is the master of days, and therefore invoking peace and blessings on him on that day in particular is superior to invoking them on him on any other day. Another wisdom is that all the good bestowed on his Ummah in the worldly life and what will be conferred upon them in the Hereafter they received it at his hands. Allah, The Exalted, combined for his Ummah all good in this worldly life and the Hereafter, and the greatest honors bestowed upon them take place on Friday. On Friday, they will be resurrected and sent to their homes and palaces in Paradise, and it is the day when the believers will see their Lord after they enter Paradise. Moreover, it is an ‘Eid for them in this worldly life, a day on which Allah, The Exalted, grants them their requests, fulfils their needs, and does not turn down whoever invokes Him. All these virtues have been conferred upon them because of him and through his agency and the knowledge of which was conveyed to them by him, and therefore we should invoke peace and blessings upon him on Thursday night and throughout Friday to express our gratitude to him and fulfil some of his due rights over us. Allah, The Exalted, Says (what means): {Indeed, Allah confers blessing upon the Prophet, and His angels [ask Him to do so]. O you who have believed, ask [Allah to confer] blessing upon him and ask [Allah to grant him] peace.} [Qur’an 33:56]
Allah, The Exalted, favored Friday with many virtues and Ibn al-Qayyim, may Allah have mercy upon him, brilliantly listed and enumerated them in his book Zaad Al-Ma‘aad. Allah singled out the Muslim Ummah with this blessed day, and it is known that He favoured some days over others, some months over others, some places over others, just as He favoured some of His Prophets and Messengers over others. Allah, The Exalted, Says (what means): {Those messengers - some of them We caused to exceed others.} [Qur’an 2:253] Undoubtedly, there is a great wisdom behind it; He Says (what means): {He is not questioned about what He does, but they will be questioned.} [Qur’an 21:23]


Article source: http://www.islamweb.net/emainpage/


The virtues and rewards of prayer
The obligatory five daily prayers were prescribed during the night the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam (may Allah exalt his mention), ascended to the heavens, while the commands for the remaining acts of worship were revealed to the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, on earth. This indicates the special status and importance of prayer as an act of worship.
lIt is the only pillar of Islam that is repeated five times each day, and is never waived except for the woman during her menstrual period and post-partum bleeding.
lIt is the one of the most virtuous deeds, and most beloved to Allah as the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Know that the best of your deeds are your prayers, and only a true believer maintains the state of ablution.” [Ahmad]
lIt is the backbone of one’s religion, and the coolness of the eyes of the righteous. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “The most important of all matters is Islam, its spinal cord is prayer and the highest rank is Jihaad for the sake of Allah.” [Ahmad]
lIt is an indication of Islam and belief, and preserves a person’s blood from being shed, Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {“But if they repent [by rejecting Shirk (polytheism) and accept Islamic Monotheism], perform Salah and give Zakat, then they are your brethren in religion”} [Qur’an, 9: 11].
lIt is a sign of honesty and frees a person from hypocrisy. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Whosoever prays 40 days with the congregation, attending the initial (Allahu Akbar) of the prayer, will be free of two things: Hell Fire and hypocrisy.” [Ahmad]
lIt is the best issue to be occupied with, the most profitable dealing, and the most likely amongst all acts of worship to cause the person to become humble and submissive. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Prayer is the best thing to be occupied with, so perform as much of it as you can.” [Ahmad]
lIt is a command from Allah The Almighty, Who Says (what means): {“Guard strictly (five obligatory) As-Salawaat (the prayers) especially the middle Salaat (i.e. the best prayer – ‘Asr). And stand before Allah with obedience [and do not speak to others during the Salaat (prayers)].”} [Qur’an, 2: 238].
lIt elevates a person’s ranks and expiates sins, as the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Tell me, if there is an overflowing river in front of the house of one of you in which he baths five times a day, will there remain any dirt on him? They said, ‘No dirt will remain on him’. He then said: “That is the example of the five daily obligatory prayers by which Allah erases sins.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
lIt rescues from Hell, protects against danger, and enables a person to win Paradise. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “The one who prays before sunrise (Fajr prayer) and before sunset (‘Asr prayer) will not enter Hell Fire.” [Muslim]
lIt is a sign of success and victory, and an indication of being accepted. Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {“Successful indeed are the believers. Those who offer their Salah (prayers) with all solemnity and full submissiveness.”} [Qur’an, 23: 1-2] and also {“And those who strictly guard their (five compulsory congregational) prayers (at their fixed stated hours). These are indeed the inheritors. Who shall inherit the Firdaws (Paradise). They shall dwell therein forever.”} [Qur’an, 23: 9-11]
lIt is the first thing for which the slave will be held accountable. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “The first thing for which the slave will be held accountable for on the day of Resurrection is his prayer; if it is good (by performing it properly and on time), then all his affairs will be good, and if it is ruined (by neglecting it), then all his affairs will be ruined.” [At-Tabaraani]
lIt is the provision on the way, relaxation for the soul, light for the heart, purification for the soul and a sign for salvation. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “O Bilaal! Call the Iqaamah in order for our hearts to relax.” [Ahmad and Abu Daawood].
lIt frustrates Satan and disbelievers. The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “When the son of Aadam recites a verse which recommends him to prostrate and he does, Satan starts crying, and says, woe to me, the son of Aadam was commanded and he did, and he will get Paradise as a reward, while I was commanded to prostrate and refused and will enter Hell.” [Muslim]
lIt is a form of expressing appreciation and gratitude, as well as being a treasure full of the exaltation of Allah The Almighty and glorification and praise to Him. When the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, was asked about the reason behind his excessive prayer, he said: “Should I not be a thankful slave?” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
lIt protects against following desires, evil sins and cures from sicknesses, as Allah The Almighty Says (what means): {“Verily, Salah prevents from Al-Fahshaa’ (i.e. great sins of every kind, unlawful sexual intercourse) and Al-Munkar (i.e. disbelief, polytheism, and every kind of evil wicked deed)”} [Qur’an, 29: 45].
The Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Pray the optional night prayer, because it is the way of righteous people before you, it brings you close to your Lord, prevents you from committing sins, expiates your sins and cures you from sicknesses.” [At-Tirmithi]


Article source: http://www.islamweb.net/emainpage/


Tips on safeguarding your prayer
The following is some advice to help you preserve and safeguard your prayer, and perform it in a proper manner, which makes it more likely to be accepted:
lPerform Wudhoo’ (ablution) properly because the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam (may Allah exalt his mention), said: “Allah made compulsory upon Himself to admit into Paradise any Muslim who properly performed Wudhoo’, then prays two Rak’ah with attentiveness and submissiveness.” [Muslim].
l Leave your house in the state of Wudhoo’ because the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “The one who leaves his house in a state of Wudhoo’ to perform an obligatory prayer will get the reward of pilgrimage.” [Ahmad].
l Be keen to perform it as soon as its time is due because the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “The best of deeds is performing prayer on its due time” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
l Be keen to perform it with the congregation because the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Prayer with the congregation is twentyseven multiples better than praying alone.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
l Be keen to reach before the Imam utters the initial Allahu Akbar because the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Whosoever prays forty days with the congregation, attending the initial (Allahu Akbar) of the prayer, will be free of two things: Hell Fire and hypocrisy.” [Ahmad]
l Be keen to walk to the mosque because the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “Give glad tidings to those who walk to the mosque during dark with complete light on the Day of Resurrection.” [Abu Dawood and At-Tirmithi]
l Be attentive with your heart while performing prayer.
l Wait in the mosque for the next prayer as often as you can because the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said when he mentioned the seven whom Allah The Almighty will protect under the shade of His throne: “A man whose heart is attached to mosques.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]
l Learn the rulings of prayer and the Sunnah (tradition) of the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam.
l Perform the regular optional prayers at home because the Prophet, sallallaahu ‘alaihi wa sallam, said: “The best prayer is the one performed at home except the obligatory prayer.” [At-Tabarani]
l Beware of staying up late at night because you are likely to miss the Fajr prayer.
l Beware of eating, drinking and laughing too much, because this makes performing prayer heavier on the heart.
l Set your alarm for Fajr or get someone to call you to wake up for prayer.
l Ponder upon the verses recited during the prayer.
l Read about the Salaf (righteous predecessors) and their ambition and keenness to guard prayer.
l Think about the glory of Allah The Almighty before you start praying.
l Always say the recommended supplications and remembrance after prayers, and do not leave the mosque before finishing them.
Ibn al-Qayyim, may Allah have mercy upon him, said:
‘There are five ranks of people in relation to prayer,
First, is he who transgresses against himself by neglecting parts of Wudhoo’, its timings and some of its conditions; and he will be punished.
Second, is he who maintains its timings and conditions, but his mind is occupied during prayer; and he will be questioned.
Third, is he who maintains its timings and conditions and all its rights and struggles against himself not to become busy thinking of something else; so he is in a state of Jihad while praying; and he will forgiven.
Fourth, is he whose heart is fully consumed by praying during his prayer, and his main concern is establishing it properly and perfectly, and he is in a state of servitude to his Lord; and he will be rewarded.
Fifth, is he who does as the fourth, but in addition he sets his heart in the Hands of his Lord, watchful of his Lord, glorifying and honouring Him as if he can see his Lord; his mind is concentrated on praying; and this type is far higher than any other rank; and he is close to his Lord and will have the pleasure of being close to his Lord in the Hereafter .’
Which one of these five ranks do you fit in? Hold yourself accountable and weigh it according to your performance of prayer, because it is an accurate scale.
Ways to glorify the status of prayer:
1. Perform it on time.
2. Perfect its conditions and compulsory acts.
3. Rush to perform it.
4. Feel sorrow if any portion was performed improperly, like the one who becomes saddened for not performing it with the congregation because he missed out on the twenty-seven multiples of reward; or if he was inattentive during prayer, for a prayer without complete submission is like a body without a soul.


Article source: http://www.islamweb.net/emainpage/



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